With respect to the difference between Mystical Symbols and Allegory: Allegory often uses mystical symbols to convey higher realities of mind and spirit to the reader. The twelve signs of the zodiac uses symbolism to portray the Natural Laws (see The Laws Of Creation http://OuterDarkness.Nazirene.org#TheLawsOfCreation ) that exerts influence upon the consciousness of the people of this world. As the individual mind begins to develop -- and they begin to understand the Natural Laws -- having received the Law of God, they are then Portrayed in the Scriptures as Jews -- which can be defined as one who has received the Law of God, but interprets it externally in ritual and tradition. Israel at that level of the individual development, portrays their ability to interact with the 12 spheres of mind as explored in the article on the Tree of Life (see http://treeoflife.nazirene.org/ ). It is also important to recognize that in the allegorical symbolism, each of the 12 spheres are portrayed as "tribes" -- meaning, that the spheres of mind themselves remain in a divided state (see The Enigma Of The Segmented Mind http://OuterDarkness.Nazirene.org#SegmentedMind ). One of the most important differences in the Old and New Testaments, is the fact that the disciples are portrayed as being Singular -- in that the division of those spheres of mind have been overcome. Each of the disciples are themselves married -- meaning that the male/female division of each sphere of mind has been overcome -- which in and of itself is a necessary development in order to achieve oneness in each sphere of mind. The Church Father Origen wrote with respect to the allegorical nature of the scriptures: “But all the narrative portion, relating either to the marriages, or to the begetting of the children, or to battles of different kinds, or to any other histories whatever, what else can they be supposed to be, save the forms and figures of hidden and sacred things? As men, however, make little effort to exercise their intellect, or imagine that they possess knowledge before they really learn, the consequence is that they never begin to have knowledge". What this means is that the marriages that are portrayed in the scriptures has nothing to do with marriages of men and women -- but rather, the male/female opposites within each of the 12 spheres of the mind as personified in the Tree of Life. So too does what Origen portrays as the "...begetting of the children, or to battles of different kinds, or to any other histories whatever, what else can they be supposed to be, save the forms and figures of hidden and sacred things". Which means that what is being portrayed in the scriptures is not historical accounts -- but rather, an allegorical portrayal of the Forces and Laws of Consciousness. Origen then writes that "...As men, however, make little effort to exercise their intellect, or imagine that they possess knowledge before they really learn, the consequence is that they never begin to have knowledge". The scriptures are based upon the process of Anamnesis (see The Gospels Embody The Principles Of Anamnesishttp://GospelOfThomas.Nazirene.org#Anamnesis ), and it is these allegorical symbols that must be used to bring about the necessary expansion and deepening of the mind necessary to tap into the Inner Source portrayed in Origen's words: "...imagine that they possess knowledge before they really learn".
How can Origen write that a person Possess Knowledge even before they begin to learn? Our Soul or True-Self (see http://SoulSelf.org ) possesses all the Knowledge of all the lives that that Soul has lived (see Reincarnation - The Key To Christianityhttp://ChristianReincarnation.org#KeyToChristianity ). But is is our thinking, mindset and lifestyle that has inhibited and derailed our mental-development (see Arrested Mental Development http://AnInconvenientTruth.org#ArrestedMentalDevelopment ) which has caused our Spiritual Amnesia (see http://AnInconvenientTruth.org#SpiritualAmnesia ) -- and thus, has imprisoned us in abject self-ignorance. Much of which is caused by men not listening to women and women not listening or understand the men in their lives (see http://SoulSelf.org#IntuitiveVsLinear ). And that when Origen makes reference to the "marriages" portrayed in the scriptures, what is allegorically being portrayed is the overcoming of this condition of division -- with the re-merger on that level of the division of Adam and Eve into their original form of Adam/Eve.
It is the interaction of the male/female (Linear/Intuitive) spheres of mind as personified in the Tree of Life ( http://TreeOfLife.Nazirene.org ), that is necessary to develop the mind beyond the organic "animal-soul" level of human consciousness (see Animal-Soul http://AnInconvenientTruth.org#animal ). And when the scriptures are subject to the Linear (literal and historic) interpretation, the spiritual meaning is always lost to the reader -- as explained by the Apostle Peter when he stated: "...therefore great care is to be taken, that when the law of God is read, it be not read according to the understanding of our own mind. For there are many sayings in the divine Scriptures which can be drawn to that sense which every one has preconceived for himself; and this ought not to be done. For you ought not to seek a foreign and extraneous sense, which you have brought from without" Why should the scriptures not be read and understood in accord with "an extraneous sense, which you have brought from without"? Because the whole of the scriptures are an allegorical presentation using and employing catalysts that connect the outer physical consciousness with the pre-existing inner soul and spiritual consciousness -- which when rightly understood, is the very essence of the process of anamnesis. Therefore, when you attempt to teach the meaning of the scriptures, you negate the catalysts and symbols that are contained in the scriptural body, and you inhibit and atrophie the development of those areas of mind that must be developed in order to tap into this inner Source of Knowledge. Further, this is why Jesus commanded his disciples that they can only have ONE TEACHER -- the True Prophet or Logos -- that dwells within them at the very Core of their Consciousness (see The True Prophet http://OuterDarkness.Nazirene.org#TrueProphet ).
With respect to this ONE TEACHER that the followers of Jesus were commanded to seek out exclusively, Peter taught that he is "...within the mind of every one of us, but in those who have no desire of the knowledge of God and His righteousness, He is inoperative; but He works in those who seek after that which is profitable to their souls, and kindles in them the light of knowledge. Wherefore seek Him first of all; and if you do not find Him, expect not that you shall learn anything from any other."
In their abandonment of the Gospel First Principles and the One Source of the Truth of all Truths that is drawn out through the process of Anamnesis, the modern Christian world has virtually nothing in common with the purpose and objective of the Original Gospel Teachings (see The Original Teachings Have Nothing In Common With Church Dogma http://TheCall.Nazirene.org#OriginalTeachings ). But what this also means is that the more we learn in the traditional manner as embraced by academia, the more we suppress those innate resources of mind that have the ability to tap into this Inner Source of Ultimate Truth (see Academia And The Feminist Cultural War On Women http://TreeOfLife.Nazirene.org#AcademiaWarOnWomen ). And with respect to the true meaning of the scriptures: the more we study commentaries, attend Bible study groups, and the teachings of traditional religious institutions and authorities, the more we alienate ourselves from the True and Spiritual meaning of the Gospels. Instead of developing those areas of the mind that permit us to tap into and learn directly from the Source of all Knowledge and Truth, we turn instead to the (carnal) opinions of men -- which is outlawed in the New Testament (see The Rejection Of All Human Opinion: http://KeyOfKnowledge.org#HumanOpinion .
The condition of mind that is necessary to prevail, is portrayed in the name Jacob who prevails over the Laws -- thereby fulfilling the Law within himself -- which is the basis of the statement in the Gospel of Thomas: (12) The disciples said to Jesus, "We know that you will depart from us. Who is to be our leader? Jesus said to them, "Wherever you are, you are to go to Jacob (James) the righteous, for whose sake heaven and earth came into being." Quoting from http://gospelofthomas.nazirene.org/#James : "The name that is being portrayed in the Gospel teachings is Jacob -- and the reader is not being taught to seek out a man named Jacob -- but rather, when the Key of Knowledge is properly applied to the understanding of the scriptures, what is being commanded is for the believer to take on that condition of mind that is personified in the name Jacob." So, while the name Jacob is allegorical, it is not so much a mystical symbol. Yet, without bringing about that condition of mind personified as Jacob/James the Righteous, it will remain impossible to manifest that Condition and Reality of mind portrayed in the Name Jesus/Joshua/Yeshua. Further, unless you manifest this condition of Jacob being transformed into Spiritual Israel and the manifestation of all that is personified in the name Jesus, your meditation and other religious practices and observances will be greatly diminished.