A round means a going once around the seven globes of the earth-chain. It was also called a "ring." Some have confused it with incarnating in the seven races on any one planet. The seven races have to go seven times around the seven globes of this chain, developing in each the characteristics of each, which cannot be obtained in any other way.
There are seven globes in the chain, of which the earth is one. The other six are not visible to us, as they are made of matter in a different state, and on a different plane from matter as we know it and see it. The first race began on Globe No. 1 and carried on evolution there, and then went to Globe No. 2, and so on all around the seven. This it did seven times. Race No. 2 proceeded similarly, having in its possession all that was gained by No.1. We are now the Fifth Race engaged in going round the whole chain; hence we are called those of the Fourth Round, but are the Fifth Race. We must go round the whole chain of 7 planets 3 times more before as a race we are perfected.
When the Seventh Round is finished, as well as the halt for rest that
follows, we begin again as a Sixth Race and go through Seven Rounds as such.
When that is concluded we begin as the Seventh Race and repeat the process
of Seven Rounds through the chain, thus bringing the grand evolution for
this chain to a perfect end. After that we pass on upon a higher plane,
the possessors of all the knowledge and development acquired during that
sevenfold progress. This is the outline of the grand scheme, and, as you
see, includes the whole series of seven planets.
It is now plain that ring and round do not mean the process
of going through the race in its process of formation on any planet, as
its beginnings come on and are finally replaced by its finished product,
but that these words refer to the grand march around the whole chain of
globes, of which this earth is the fourth.
New material forms may come, but they are not prototypes. The latter are not material, therefore no confusion between the two can exist. There is evolution of material forms, but prototypes remain unaffected. This is a question which requires the questioner to look up exact meanings of the words used by him. It is not substantial. Fix the true meanings and the confusion will vanish.
It is the order of nature. All the atoms have to grow used to their work before they can do it well and quickly. At first as astral atoms only, they do it over and over again until all the atoms acquire the habit of doing it without fail. They then go on to other work. This having been the way for ages, the human body is now gestated in nine months, whereas at earlier periods such gestation took years, later on fewer years, and finally as now. In future times the process will be finished more quickly, and then the embryo will pass through all these old states almost instantaneously. The reason, therefore, is that the physical human molecules of this period of evolution have only acquired the ability to pass through the series in nine months, as a result of millions of years of prior slow work. For nature goes by steps, one at a time. The embryo exhibits these phases because there are still left in the matter used the old impressions, and racial evolution is gradually wiping them out by transforming them into new organs, by eliminating those not useful and by condemning others. When the work is fully understood by every atom so that it acts with unerring, machine-like precision, it will be possible to bring out a body in a very short space of time.
Path, July, 1892