TREE OF LIFE The greatest error that can be made at this point is to interpret this diagram as an arbitrarily created conceptual or theoretical explanation of the ordering system underlying physical reality. It represents the nine emanations [note: spheres 0 and 10 represent different realities outside of the nine emanations discussed here --editor] that are the shaping factors of all physical structures and events. They underlie, direct, and integrate all physical realities, from the subtlest sub-electronic forces, to the complex galaxies, to the organ systems making up the physical body of Man.... from the most primitive instinct of a slime mold to the most divine manifestation of the spirit of Man. They are what the Kamitians call the Neteru; Yorubas call the Orishas, and Westerners have translated as dieties, Archangels, angels, etc. It is very important to understand, that contrary to popular opinion, cosmology does not attempt to explain how physical things, on the atomic and molecular levels, come into being. It concentrates on the coming into being of the metaphysical factors that will function as the vehicles through which the physical things will come into existence, as well as the means of regulating their structural and functional components, hence external behavior. In other words, a cosmogony deals with the "generation" (from "gonus") of a “system”. Properly understood, the terms "System" and "Cosmos" are synonymous; an assemblage, or combination of things or parts, working in unity, as a whole, cooperating to carry out the same function, to achieve the same goal, etc. It was said that the emanations, one to nine, are parts of a “system” through which Subjective Being, represented by zero (the absence of things, but not of Being) creates and administrates physical reality; “10”. These nine “DEITIES” – the PAUT NETERU – compose the “organs systems” making up the spiritual bodies of all physical things. They link them with their source of being and subsistence, and direct their functions. African religion, better comprehended as a Way of Life, is based on the understanding of the functioning of these nine metaphysical vessels of creation and administration. As they are shaping and governing functions, their activities carry the force of law. For example, you wouldn’t attempt to feed on hay because the functions that govern your digestive mechanism can't digest it. It is in this manner that the attributes of the Deities (Neteru, Orishas, etc.) represent the laws governing our lives on Earth. Observance of these laws allows them to fully bring forth their powers through our being. According to our chronological age, state of health, and level of spiritual development, the manifestation of these “powers” will range from our basest urges, to the commonly evolved “mental abilities”, to the psychical abilities held by a few, to the attainment of divine perfection, i.e., Man-Godhood on Earth.