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THEOSOPHY WORLD ---------------------------------- November, 2000
An Internet Magazine Dedicated to the Theosophical Philosophy
And its Practical Application in the Modern World
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(Please note that the materials presented in THEOSOPHY WORLD are
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be reposted or otherwise republished without prior permission.)
"Dicipline and Culture," by B.P. Wadia
"The Actual Objects of the Theosophical Society,"
by Katinka Hesselink
"Conference on Theosophical Work," by Eldon Tucker
"The Tempest," by Kenneth Morris
"Animal Monads," by G. de Purucker
"The Principles of Spiritual Teaching," by Richard Heinemann
"A Vision," by Victor Endersby
"A Reminiscence," by Gertrude W. van Pelt
"Exploring Karma," by Boris de Zirkoff
"The Occult Law of Correspondence and Analogy,"
by A. Trevor Barker
> When we begin to delineate it and define it, we endow the Divine
> with our merely human figments of thought, imperfect, limited,
> because we are imperfect; and therefore it is that we
> Theosophists always speak of this wondrous, ineffable Mystery by
> the one word THAT. This is infinitely more reverential than to
> begin to label the Divine or to ticket it or to qualify it with
> the imperfect attributes of our human existence.
> -- G. de Purucker, STUDIES IN OCCULT PHILOSOPHY, 482.
DISCIPLINE AND CULTURE
by B.P. Wadia
[From THUS HAVE I HEARD, pages 213-14.]
There is great activity all over the world to further the ideals
of freedom, of peace, and of culture. It is not difficult to
understand that these three great ideals are intertwined; there
cannot be peace of the right kind when the citizens of a state
are slaves or savages.
There are people who think that freedom is of primary value, who
look upon peace as a distant goal and regard culture as means to
further national ends. This causes great confusion, and it would
be worth our while to consider the interrelationship of the
ideals of culture, peace, and freedom.
The present clash of ideologies -- turning upon whether the state
is for the citizen or the citizen is but a cog in the great
machinery of the state -- has to be resolved if the world is to
free itself from the nightmare threat of another great war. For
this, what order of importance shall we give to freedom, peace,
and culture, we who are lovers of our fellow men, who have no
political bias, national or international, who neither consider
Soviet Russia a republic of free men, nor look upon the Western
nations as true democracies of men with peace in their own
We have to reorient our thinking; an individual revolution ought
to take place in every educated mind. If a man has not real
culture, he cannot be at peace with his fellow men; he cannot
tolerate, far less appreciate, a point of view other than his
own. It is, therefore, real culture enshrined in the soul of
man, the real man, which will resolve the friction of conflicting
True culture will reveal not only that the citizen must not be
looked upon as a slave of the state but also that the state is
properly a playground for the full development of its citizens.
The citizen has, however, reciprocal obligations which culture
will also reveal. The man of culture will not take his stand
upon the all-importance of his rights but will acknowledge the
duties of man as the citizen of the state.
Such culture cannot come out of a view of life that is
materialistic and mechanistic, maintaining that might is right.
A man of real culture will recognize that humanity is one,
diversified into groupings called nations, communities, races,
and that culture alone will enable him and the group to which he
belongs to live at peace with all other men and all other groups.
Therefore, if war is to be banished and peace made permanent it
cannot be by any other way than by a large number of people,
especially among the leaders of the world, undergoing
self-discipline and self-training to make themselves men of
culture. Those leaders and their followers will then be able to
adapt themselves to viewpoints different from theirs, because
within those viewpoints they will find something of value of
Then only can liberty of the individual as a citizen come to
birth. Therefore the triad of culture, peace, and freedom ought
to be properly understood, and it should be recognized that
culture is the apex; from it alone can come peace for the many
nations of the world and freedom for all men and citizens.
THE ACTUAL OBJECTS OF THE THEOSOPHICAL SOCIETY
by Katinka Hesselink
It seems the Theosophical Society is continually asking itself
what its objects are for. I tend to think that this
preoccupation is in part due to the fact that we do not really
practice these objects. The first has become so common an ideal,
that to actually say it out loud seems an anomaly to many. The
second object has the disadvantage of talking about religion,
philosophy, and science in general, instead of theosophy
specifically. The third is so far off general practice in the
Theosophical Society that it seems irrelevant.
But let me start by reminding the reader of the three objects as
formulated by the Theosophical Society, Adyar. The objects of
the other theosophical organizations do not vary much from this
theme, except that the third object is often left out and the
second split in two.
1. To form a nucleus of the Universal Brotherhood of Humanity,
without distinction of race, creed, sex, caste, or color.
2. To encourage the study of Comparative Religion, Philosophy,
3. To investigate unexplained laws of Nature and the powers
latent in Man.
In talking about the Theosophical Society, the first object has
been stressed most. I think this is right. Brotherhood (or
sisterhood) is the most important ideal we could aspire to. All
our talk about ethics is based on this object and all our
aspirations about practising these ethics are also based on this
object. Still, even if this object seems as an ideal obsolete,
as a practice it is very far away. Wars all over the globe point
to the relevance of trying to live brotherly with those we
disagree with, or look different from us, etc.
The second object was added (historically) latest to the three
objects. In fact it was the current third object that the
Theosophical Society started with. At the time the aim of the
Theosophical Society was formulated as follows:
> The objects of the Society are, to collect and diffuse a
> knowledge of the laws which govern the universe.
> -- C. Jinarajadasa, THE GOLDEN BOOK OF THE THEOSOPHICAL
> SOCIETY (1875-1925), 243-50
At the time it was probably assumed that this would include,
perhaps mainly, the laws governing the spiritistic phenomena.
Still, all anyone seems to be doing on this score is reading up
on earlier work from within the Theosophical Movement, without
considering the work done outside the Theosophical Movement.
The second object was for me personally the main reason of
joining the Theosophical Society. I have always been fascinated
with religion and philosophy and it seemed to me that this group
of people were actually open to different points of view,
guaranteeing free research. Now that I have been a member of the
Theosophical Society for some years it seems to me that this is
not entirely true. First of all (as often stressed) the
Theosophical Society is in fact simply a group of people and
while it (as a group) aspires to such tolerance and free
research, its group-dynamics and the individual shortcomings of
its members make actual tolerance difficult, though not
It seems to me that in this strange and fortunate moment in time
when literature from people all over the world are so easily
accessible, the Theosophical Society could be the place where
people with different backgrounds and philosophical or spiritual
preference could join hands and compare notes. Or otherwise put,
they could learn to see that their own tradition is not the only
one relevant to spiritual living. If we actually practiced that,
we might really be a force towards religious tolerance and free
The same goes for the third object. If we actually studied (in
practice, not just in books) the different techniques of
meditation and healing practised in the "new age" world, and
combined this with a knowledge of what Blavatsky and other
theosophical writers have said about these and similar subjects,
the Theosophical Society might help moderate some of the excesses
of New Age.
I started this article in saying that we do not really practice
the three objects of our society. What we do, and what many
people seem to believe is the object of the Theosophical Society
could be summed up thus:
1. To form a nucleus of the Universal Brotherhood of Humanity,
without distinction of race, creed, sex, caste, or color.
2. To study the literature which originated with the
Theosophical Movement and to compare this privately in each
individual home with other spiritual and scientific
3. To condemn any use of spiritual powers and abilities because
these automatically (it is thought) lead to black magic.
I think this is wrong, stupid and contrary to what H.P.
Blavatsky, Olcott, Judge, Damodar and Subba Row were trying to
do. To end this discussion on a positive note, I think the hope
for free research lies exactly in the way we tend to think of the
second object: to study different philosophies and sciences in
the privacy of our own homes. The fact that this does happen
means that in fact the Theosophical Society does practice the
second object, though this might be strengthened by lodges and
study-groups taking on the study of some book not published from
a theosophical press.
CONFERENCE ON THEOSOPHICAL WORK
by Eldon Tucker
The American Section of the Theosophical Society [Pasadena] had a
three-day gathering July 7-9, 2000. It was a working conference
for members, where everyone had a chance to share the
theosophical work that they were doing. The conference had been
in planning for over a year. It covered topics of interest to
workers of any theosophical group.
Unlike many conventions where the emphasis was on making public
presentations of the Teachings, this gathering was focused on the
networking of theosophical workers within the T.S. The hope was
that the weekend would help make the T.S. more visible and
understandable to members, so that they feel part of it.
Following are some brief impressions and assorted information on
the conference. Everyone's experience was different. We met
people we may have only known before on the Internet. Some
familiar faces we might have seen were not present,
unfortunately, as the conference was for members only, and they
may not have been invited.
The conference was held in a large meeting hall at Pasadena City
College. There were speakers, panels, computer displays
(projected on a screen), and general discussions among all the
attendees. The conference covered, excluding breaks and
discussion periods, the following topics:
* Welcome and Overview by National Secretary
* Objectives of the Theosophical Society
* Structure of the T.S. by the Chairman of the Cabinet
* The Theosophical Correspondence Course by TCC Director
* Who are We?
* Theosophical Library Center by TLC Research Assistant
* SUNRISE MAGAZINE by Sunrise Editor
* Theosophical University Press by TUP Manager
* Support: Theosophical Society, American Section, Branches,
* Study Group Panel: Altadena, Claremont, San Louis Obispo,
Venice Beach, CA; New York, NY; Tucson, AZ
* Branch Formation, Operation, and Activities: San Diego,
Northwest, Great Lakes
* Old and New Projects: Email Discussions; Pamphlets; Public
Library Contributions; Science Conference; Southern California
Gathering; Web Pages Presentation: The Theosophical Society,
Theosophical University Press, American Section, Branches
* Future Community Programs, Public Presentations: Internet;
Newspapers; Schools; Study Groups; Workshops & Lectures
* Tours: Headquarters; Theosophical Library Center; Theosophical
* Special Outings: JPL, The Getty Museum
There is now an effort to open branches and study groups. More
than one branch in a large geographic area might be needed, each
a hub with satellite study groups. A theme common to all
theosophical efforts emerged: the need for more activities that
are public and the involvement of young people.
Regarding lodge work, it's important to keep the ideas out there.
It is important to have somebody to talk to, a human touch, and
not just the impersonal printed word. Efforts such as online
mailing lists, and as the online directory of Blavatsky Net help
In the Pasadena T.S., it only takes three members to form a
lodge. (Seven are required in the Adyar T.S.) A lodge is
expected to have its own phone and address, and provide a public
presence and outreach effort.
There are no dues. Everything is paid for via donations and
volunteer help. One can donate to the Theosophical Endowment
Corporation, the Theosophical Society, one's National Section, or
the local branch.
The Theosophical Society is a registered association, so it
cannot own property. The Theosophical Endowment Corporation (dba
Theosophical University Press) gets properties other than small
donations that exceed the limit that the IRS allows, like title
to real estate. The American Section is a California non-profit
organization with very specific tax rules.
Some aspects of public outreach include a greater accessibility
on the Internet and in public libraries of the theosophical
literature. All the titles of Theosophical University Press are
online, and 750 theosophical articles, and a massive consolidated
set of theosophical glossaries. There is also a search engine
that allows for finding materials of interest to the online
The library in Altadena has over 35,000 books. There was a
six-year project to color code all the books, coded by category
and subcategory. Materials are organized by a system developed
by the T.S. library to better organize materials by geography,
religion, and philosophy.
A series of correspondence courses are offered by both regular
mail and email:
The printing press is highly important too; most people meet and
learn about Theosophy by way of books.
Besides books, various leaflets and pamphlets have been produced,
including biographical sketches of Blavatsky, Olcott, Judge,
Tingley, Purucker, and Conger, and an instructional leaflet on
"Forming a Theosophical Reading Group."
Lodges have their own newsletters:
http://www.centurytel.net/theosophy (THE KALI YUGA RAG)
http://www.theosophy-nw.org/theosnw (THEOSOPHY NORTHWEST VIEW)
http://www.greenheart.com/amsec (THE THEOSOPHIC LINK)
In addition, the Society has a general interest theosophical
Another effective means of publicity is press releases. Good
results have come from sending them to religious editors, sending
both email and hardcopy.
Theosophical mailing lists are also effective, but full-sized
public lists have not been tried to this point. What has been
tried are "email discussion circles," where two or three
long-time students and three-or-four enquirers privately exchange
emails in their group discussions. A "reply-to-all" is used in
individual emails, rather than formal mailing list software.
Eight-week classes on special topics are offered, which repeat
periodically. The idea of short topic-focused classes is a
useful tool that various branches and isolated individuals might
at times consider.
The objects of the Theosophical Society are:
* To diffuse among men a knowledge of the laws inherent in the
* To promulgate the knowledge of the essential unity of all that
is, and to demonstrate that this unity is fundamental in
* To form an active brotherhood among men,
* To study ancient and modern religion, science, and philosophy,
* To investigate the powers innate in man.
The objects are like a mission statement. A mission statement
says why a group exists, what it is trying to do. Various points
came up in a general discussion of these objects.
We endeavor to form a sangha or community of fellow seekers. We
study, teach, and promote the philosophy. We also study other
areas of thought and self-improvement. We encourage creative
self-expression, including the spiritual, intellectual,
heart-life, and artistic leading to self-enrichment and a
brightening of the world.
Theosophical work is often person-to-person, with whomever we
meet. We find out what people are asking for and seeking. We do
not recruit members. If someone writes in and wants to join the
Society, we want to know something of them, of their interests
and backgrounds, before they actually become members.
It is important to listen to the views of others. It is ok for
different organizations and expressions of Theosophy to exist in
the world. There can be lodges and groups with their own
specialties. Someone asked if it is possible that there could be
a theosophical heretic. A member joked -- Can we be drummed out
for our beliefs? While this might be possible of any group, a
better question might be: Where are we at home in doing our
theosophical work? We can tell, if we listen within, if we are in
the right place and doing the right work or not. If we are out
of place, it is our karma that we move elsewhere, seeking out our
homecircle. It is best that we observe and act on our inner
feelings, rather that waiting for life to act for us -- from
without -- making us go places and do things that we should have
realized were right and done under our own initiative!
By Kenneth Morris
[From THE THEOSOPHICAL PATH, May 1926, as reprinted in THE
THEOSOPHICAL FORUM, July 1947, pages 410-20.]
THE TEMPEST, with CYMBELINE, PERICLES, and THE WINTER'S TALE,
belongs to the fourth and last group of Shakespeare's plays. Its
first recorded performance was at Whitehall before King James on
November 1,1611; probably it had already been acted at his own
Globe Theater in Southwark earlier in the same year. It is
probably not the last play he wrote; but almost certainly, when
he wrote it he intended it to be the last, and was consciously
giving in it his farewell message to the world. "When I have
required some heavenly music (which even now I do)," says
Prospero, who is Shakespeare:
> I'll break my [magician's] staff,
> Bury it certain fathoms in the earth,
> And deeper than did ever plummet sound
> I will drown my book [of magic].
It is the last of the plays in which he records his own spiritual
life and adventures; in this respect following HAMLET, the
representative or central play of the third period, as this is of
The crux of both is that a king, a rightful king, has been ousted
from his throne by foul means: a wrong has been done that must be
righted. This is a reflection, or a symbol, of the whole
wrongness of life -- the evil in the world and in man. When he
wrote HAMLET, say in 1602, Shakespeare saw no means of righting
this wrong except through disastrous expiations -- deaths and
deaths and deaths: by 1610, when he wrote THE TEMPEST, he had
discovered that there was another means. Man was not the
helpless creature of fortune, doomed to ruin by his own weakness,
or to be saved only by sacrifice; instead, there was in him a
magician, a being of power, who can command his destiny. So for
Hamlet, the "hesitating Dane," we have Prospero the Master of the
Elements; and for the old redemption by sacrifice, we have
redemption by power and peace: a power and a peace that Prospero
has found within himself and imposes upon his surroundings,
natural, elemental, and human.
Externally, the play was suggested by certain current events;
there was much in it of topical interest. In 1609, Sir George
Somers sailed with nine ships for Virginia; the fleet was
scattered by a storm; some of the ships reached their
destination; others returned to England with news of the probable
loss of the admiral's ship, the SEA-VENTURE. It had, however,
really been driven to the Bermudas, and found its safety there.
In the following year, a pamphlet was published in London giving
an account of the whole affair. The SEA-VENTURE had sprung a
leak; the sailors, exhausted with working the pumps, had given up
all hope, taken leave of each other, and fallen asleep at their
work: to wake in calm seas, under salubrious skies, within a
stone's throw of land. The ship had been jammed between two
rocks close inshore; and all hands were brought off with perfect
ease, onto an island uninhabited but delightful, with air mild
and delicious, and soil teemingly fruitful.
The title of the pamphlet is indicative: THE DISCOVERY OR BERMUDA
OR DEVIL'S ISLAND. The Bermudas had been supposed to be
enchanted; Sir Walter Raleigh in 1596 had given them a bad name
because of the storms that infested them; Shakespeare in this
same play alludes to the "still-vext Bermoothes." Here then he
found his material nexus, his external suggestion: here was a
tempest; an enchanted island; a ship despaired of and wrecked,
and as if by magic unharmed after all; and a part of the fleet
(or crew) returned home lamenting the supposed loss of their
leader. All of the incidents we find reproduced in the play. He
used them as scaffolding for, or a means of setting forth, in its
final perfection, his profound philosophy of life.
Through a number of plays, he had been haunted by the duality of
Nature, human and otherwise. He sensed constantly a Hidden
Divinity: at his very bitterest; and he did fall to great
bitterness. He would have gone to the stake for it that this God
in Man did exist, or had existed, or ought to exist. But he also
saw clearly that it was in defeat and retirement, obscured by the
forces of evil, which in this world have it mainly their own way.
In his late thirties, realization of these things had begun to
oppress him; and grew through seven years or so, creating an
internal agony in whose white heat the grand tragedies were
forged. Undoubtedly his understanding of the matter -- which was
intense, burning-clear, and personal -- came of the fact that he
could watch the contest primarily in his own life; in which,
somewhere about 1600, some dark shadow seems to have loomed up to
be conquered or to destroy him. That he did conquer it: that he
arrived at a perfect serenity of wisdom, a clear insight at last,
THE TEMPEST is there to prove.
It was in about his thirty-eighth year, when he wrote JULIUS
CAESAR, that he began to notice this usurpation by evil of the
sovereignty of good. He was not at first greatly troubled by it.
He shared the general view of his age: which saw in the king the
head and heart of the nation, a kind of link between it and the
Divine Ruling of the universe, and so the symbol of Good always
as opposed to evil. In JULIUS CAESAR, it is Caesar himself, of
course, who holds this symbolic position; we see certain of the
lower human elements, and particularly envy (impersonated as
Cassius) rise against him, involving in their conspiracy the not
ignoble qualities that are in Brutus; but we feel that
Shakespeare has no doubt of the issue. The conspirators might
kill Caesar, but they were powerless against Caesarism: Octavian
is Caesar as soon as Julius is dead, and his return and triumph
are inevitable as fate. Shakespeare had not yet realized the
power of evil.
Next came HAMLET; and here the result is far more uncertain.
Octavian is sweeping to his revenge. We have Hamlet groping and
hesitating after it. When we remember that these two characters
have to play the same part, it becomes clear to us how far more
deeply Shakespeare had become involved in the struggle with evil
in the latter than in the former play, though probably not a year
had passed between the writing of them. Still he foresees a
final righting of the great wrong: the usurping evil (King
Claudius) is to be killed; the murdered good (King Hamlet) is to
be avenged; there will be peace at last, he is assured -- but at
what cost! All is doubt and uncertainty. He was himself his
model for Hamlet, and Hamlet's dead father, and Claudius; he
foresaw that, before the atonement could be made, Hamlet -- his
own superb intelligence -- would be sacrificed.
MEASURE FOR MEASURE, OTHELLO, MACBETH, and KING LEAR followed:
each gloomier than the last. In each, he struggles towards the
righting of the great wrong, the undoing of the great usurpation.
In each, he foresees atonement, but the price to be paid for it
is always greater. Until in KING LEAR, it is Cordelia, the
divine Soul in man itself, which must be immolated. It is as if
he had said, "To undo the evil that humanity is, humanity, with
the god in its heart and all, must be blotted out and a new race
created." Then came two bitter scourgings of the falsity of
women, TROILUS AND CRESSIDA and ANTONY AND CLEOPATRA. Then came
the savage TIMON OF ATHENS, in which the tortured soul of
Shakespeare proclaims its disgust with and despair of mankind.
Then, seven years after JULIUS CAESAR, he reached the lowest
depths he ever did reach in PERICLES; and there, in deep hell,
turned, looked upward, and once more saw the light.
If he did not write the parts we dislike of PERICLES -- and very
likely, he did not -- still it is noteworthy. It is still
indicative of his inward history, that he should have turned from
the bitterness of TROILUS and TIMON to take a play by another
man, far fouler and bitterer than either, and redeem it into
sweet serenity; -- come so quickly from the creation of Cressida
and Cleopatra, to that of Marina. What is positive is this: a
new day had dawned for him; a new sun shone; the bitterness is
gone; the tortured soul is at peace; he believes in the divine
within himself again, and consequently he believes in the divine
in humanity; where a year before he was hating, now he is pitying
Then came THE TEMPEST. Here the Dethroned Divinity holds all the
power in his hands. A glance at the story will serve to show
what a marvelous change had taken place in Shakespeare's outlook.
Prospero, Duke of Milan, in order to get time for his studies,
principally of magic, had committed the charge of his duchy into
the hands of his brother Antonio. Antonio grew ambitious, and at
the price of making Milan tributary to her traditional enemy,
Alonso King of Naples, called in the latter's aid; and with it,
dethroned Prospero and set him adrift with his infant daughter
Miranda in a crazy boat in mid-sea. But fortune or Prospero's
art guided the boat safely to an island, where reigning through
his magic over a world of spirits, he brought up Miranda and
bided his time.
The play opens twelve years later; when, all his enemies being
upon a voyage in those parts, Prospero raises a storm, which
produces on them the illusion of shipwreck, and all are cast
ashore on the island. There the heir of Naples, Ferdinand,
Alonso's son, separated from the rest, falls in with Prospero and
in love with Miranda, as her father intended he should. Alonso,
imagining Ferdinand lost, and despondent on that account, is
prepared upon the denouement to restore to Prospero his dukedom.
Ferdinand and Miranda are betrothed. It transpires that the ship
is in perfectly sound condition after all. The entire party
returns in it to Italy. Prospero thus out of the whole adventure
having won for his daughter not only his own Milan, but queenship
in Naples as well.
Here then Shakespeare sees the fearful struggle, which has been
life-wreck, ruin, and desolation in the previous plays, as but an
illusionary storm raised by the great dethroned magician -- the
Divine Soul in man, really -- in order to bring all the factors
in the drama of life, all the principles represented, into his
power. Prospero does this not for revenge's sake, but that the
universal wrong may be righted: that "earthly things made even"
may "atone together"; that the hereditary antagonism, Naples
versus Milan, may vanish changed into union; that Miranda may be
queen in both.
He had tried the same theme years before in ROMEO AND JULIET; but
then, without philosophy, with no deep truth in mind to tell, he
had found no solution to his problem except that of conventional
tragedy. Montagues and Capulets had stood for nothing: they had
been, simply, two Italian houses at feud. But Milan and Naples
in THE TEMPEST proclaim themselves the eternal duality of
evolution: matter that rises, spirit that descends and informs;
and when the child of Milan weds the heir of Naples, that
atonement takes place which Shakespeare groped after so often
half-blindly in the early plays; which had taken place in himself
when he wrote THE TEMPEST; which he had always sensed as a
far-off bright event, the most tremendous in the history of a
human soul. Ferdinand, the heir of Naples, is the highest point
of material evolution upwards; that is to say, he is the
intellectualized animal-man. Miranda, heiress of Milan, who weds
or redeems him, is the ultimate expression of descending spirit,
the point of it, so to say, that contacts matter and becomes the
redeemer of human life.
This then is the core and last word of Shakespearean philosophy:
Miranda -- the principle she represents -- is to be mistress of
both worlds; the whole epopee has taken place: Prospero lost
Milan at first: that she might possess not only Milan, but Naples
too. That accomplished, Prospero will lay by his powers and turn
his face graveward. What then, in plain human terms, is Miranda?
Shakespeare leaves you in no doubt. The first words she utters
tell you: she is pity, compassion, the will to serve and save,
and the refusal to ever condemn or to allow a harsh solution for
any problem. Miranda is the knowledge that you have solved
nothing when you have hanged the criminal; that you have gained
nothing by your victory at war; that he who condemns another is
himself condemned -- self-condemned. It is the last word of
human wisdom, said Shakespeare; and certainly, Jesus thought so
The mushy-minded and thought shirking, or thought-incapable,
delight to call this sentimentalism; they will have none of it at
any price. When a man is down and out morally, it is easier to
hang him than to cure him; because to cure him calls for stiff
fundamental brainwork, and illuminated brainwork at that; but to
condemn him, we need but to be befuddled. In just the same way,
it is much easier in case of plague and epidemic, to parade your
fetish in galatoggery through town and incense your Mumbo-jumbo
and the like, than to attend to sanitation and science.
Shakespeare, however, by this time knew life inside and out,
clearly, sanely, and wholly. He leaves this as the sum and
finality of his doctrine, his last message to the ages that
should follow him. That message is that all this grand
agonization, life, (he says), exists solely to teach us -- even
the silliest advocate of brute-force and legalized murder among
us -- that compassion which will not and cannot turn away in
condemnation from any living being. This is the compassion which
is the most supreme wisdom and enlightenment that can come to
man, because it is recognition of the unity of all life.
At this point one might take a glance at the Bacon theory,
because all this does so forcibly, violently indeed, NOT remind
one of Bacon. The uncritical and ignorant of human nature are
fond of arguing that Bacon wrote the plays; it could as easily be
true that Disraeli wrote Dickens. Men are naturally divided, it
has been reasonably said, into Platonists and Aristotelians:
Bacon out-Aristotled Aristotle, and by much; but Shakespeare in
the Elysium sitteth on the right hand of Plato himself. Or Mr.
Shaw somewhere divides minds into those that look into the past
and say, "Why?" And those that look into the future and say, "Why
not?" Of that latter diviner group is the man that wrote the
plays; his lasso was always whizzing about the neck of
Perfection; it is a wonder it has not more been noticed, how
passionately he asserted the Divine in Man. But Bacon ...
No ... Oh dear me no!
No two minds could be more unlike. Indeed, though Shakespeare
was the very child of his age, and will fit into no niche in
European history, except his own niche in Elizabeth's England,
there is no other Elizabethan, among the known names, whom we
could think of as the author of the plays. Fletcher, perhaps,
was the likeliest man; but I think Fletcher took Shakespeare
consciously for his model; and at that was spiritually and
intellectually a frightfully poor imitation. So, if William
Shakespeare of Stratford-on-Avon and the Globe in Southwark was
not the man, it must have been someone else still more obscure,
and much less probable.
Bacon's was a very great mind: strong, daring, and ambitious. He
seems to have nourished ambitions towards the throne itself;
there was a good deal of the paranoiac in him; it is said, I am
not sure on what authority, he thought himself the great Queen's
son. He never doubted himself or his powers. His weaknesses --
ambition, avarice, and a proneness to peculation -- he never
recognized as weaknesses at all; and when the downfall came, and
he was convicted of bribe-taking, he took it all with a sort of
solemn grandeur, as "scorning" (says Ben Jonson) "to go out in a
snuff." Pride made him strong against the world. An intellectual
giant, spiritually he was a kind of embryo -- he had not rightly
begun to be.
But Shakespeare knew HIS weaknesses very well. He suffered
terribly from them, being of the type that scourges itself
unmercifully for every slip. He was highly-strung, sensitive;
where Bacon was all masculinity, he had very much, in a good
sense, of the woman in him: it has been said that he never drew a
heroic man; but he certainly did draw many ideal women. He
fought his way to a divine self-realization, through boundless
elations and limitless despairs. Bacon, the strong man, would
probably have despised him utterly. Ben, who was something
Baconian in masculinity of intellect, but who had -- as Bacon had
not -- a great heart as well -- loved Shakespeare "this side of
idolatry" as much as any man: loved him really nobly, and could
appreciate his genius as well: but even in Ben's admiration for
him there was a garlic-soupcon of affectionate contempt.
Shakespeare's life came near to being a tragedy: he saw the
depths: he descended into hell: but THE TEMPEST is there to tell
us that, having escaped final tragedy by a hair's breadth, he
reached serene undreamable spiritual success. The man who wrote
the plays had done that by 1608: Bacon was a peculator until
1621. Bacon's life, proceeding from achievement to achievement
statelily, came near topping the last heights of mundane triumph;
and missing them by a narrow margin, toppled into infamy and
ruin. -- But to return to THE TEMPEST:
Prospero's power in the island comes of his control of non-human
beings; and chiefly of the monster Caliban and the delicate
spirit Ariel, both of whom were there when he came. Indeed,
Caliban must be called half-human: though his maker is at pains
to tell us he is soul-less -- incapable of soul -- without that
inward divinity which makes one a man. He is the
animal-elemental in man. Prospero holds him strictly enslaved;
keeps him busy as hewer of wood and drawer of water: and therein
Shakespeare the Life-Teacher tells us what to do with those baser
parts of our minds which make all our trouble for us. Put them,
he says, to work; keep them concentrated on the common duty of
the moment and the day; thus they are in your power, under your
control; otherwise they will be attempting wrong against the
divinity within you -- as Caliban did against Miranda at first,
and does in the play against Prospero.
Yet there is this curious thing to note about Caliban: he speaks
no line of prose, as all Shakespeare's clowns do. Every word he
says is in verse. Much of it is uncommonly beautiful. The
reason is that he is a part of the great Nature: the inchoate,
rudimentary, undeveloped part. The human mind does not work in
him at all; and it is a truth that has many times been repeated,
that poetry and rhythm are the language of Nature, as prose is of
that only part of Nature which is so to say exiled from Nature
and unnatural -- our human brain-consciousness.
Held down as a slave, Caliban is useful enough. He becomes
dangerous when you lend him a share of your human mind. He falls
in, in the play, with a couple of drunken sailors: vulgarians,
beside whom he is a kind of gentleman in the comparison;
nevertheless they are human beings -- and instantly Caliban
becomes dangerous; he plots with them against the life of his
master. He plots in vain, of course, because Prospero is the
lord-enchanter of the island, and nothing can succeed against his
magical powers. But even Prospero, in the midst of his magic, is
perturbed by this revolt, and must take quick action.
Through Ariel, of course, his other chief servant; and here again
profundities of wisdom are concealed. Ariel is one of the Life
Master's most wonderful creations: an intelligence unhuman and
immaculate; that craves human love as a child craves the love of
its parents, and yet whose own place, always longed for, is the
sunlit solitudes of Nature. He is the principle agent of
Prospero's power; there is nothing but beauty, delight, and
wonder in him; and yet he must be controlled as firmly as Caliban
must; to him, as to Caliban, Prospero seems wholly a tyrant --
though to him a tyrant beloved.
Ariel's songs are little miracles of poetry. There is no human
cerebration in them, no more so than in the drowsing of a
dumbledar on a summer's noon from blossom to blossom, or in the
whisper of a distant lazy sea. They do not make any sense at
all, as we say; and yet they have perhaps as much as any lyric in
the language that supreme power of poetry which is its ability to
lead our human consciousness out of itself and into the great
consciousness of Nature. This power of suggesting infinity is
the highest magic there is in art.
By Ariel, then, Shakespeare means the imagination that sees out
beyond self into the vast magical universe of non-self: this is
the instrument of the universal Prospero's triumph -- the means
whereby the hidden divinity in man may come into its own and
reign. SYMPATHY is one word of it, or the first letter of it; it
is the power to step into other people's shoes, as we say; and
not into PEOPLE'S merely, but THINGS' as well.
Ariel may be contrasted with the jolly merry mischievous Puck of
A MIDSUMMER NIGHT'S DREAM; whose business there is chiefly to try
confusions with the clowns. So here is Ariel's with Caliban and
the drunken sailors. But all to a much more serious end, so that
we feel that the writing of the earlier play was mere practice
for the writing of this. Invisible Ariel is to upset their
conspiracies. To do so, he needs but negate their ill
suggestions with the sharp denial "Thou liest!" And this too is
practical wisdom, which who hath ears to hear, let him hear! The
truth and beauty of Nature, says Shakespeare, are a magical power
that can give the lie decisively to every prompting of the beast
Speaking of A MIDSUMMER NIGHT'S DREAM -- that of course is the
play with which THE TEMPEST most instantly challenges comparison.
These are the two in which the Life-teacher leads us into the
realms of Faerie. Hazlitt says that the former is the greater
poem, the later the greater play; but this judgment, especially
the second dictum of it, is very disputable. MIDSUMMER NIGHT is
the fresh adventure of the Boy-Poet into fairyland (near
Athens-on-Avon in Warwickshire); he riots there irresponsible in
company with a pack of hempen homespuns whose antics keep his
sides gloriously shaking -- but THE TEMPEST is the stately voyage
of mellow perfection and maturity, through magical seas beyond
the sunset. For irresponsibility, you have a grave and tender
wisdom; and the fairies, which were before but petulant poetic
children, are now right fairies: lovely apparitions
incomprehensible, beneficent and exquisite spirits of the vasty
There are perhaps, as Hazlitt argues, fewer quotable passages of
exiguous beauty; but that is because the whole play is such a
passage. In none other is there so glowing, jewel-like,
rainbow-like, an effect of color. In MIDSUMMER NIGHT, the hues
are the flickering greens and browns of an English woodside,
blue-flecked above with sky-glimpses -- or the staidness of an
English dusk, faintly rippled through with elf-lights. Or in
ROMEO AND JULIET we have the burning color of human passion; so
too in ANTONY AND CLEOPATRA, but there with the pomp and
magnificent opulence of imperial Rome and Egypt added.
But through THE TEMPEST, one senses an effect of subtropical
sunsets: the splendors and sapphires of a Mediterranean or
Caribbean evening, the cloud-capped towers and gorgeous palaces
of the Islands of the Blessed. Like the dying dolphin of
mythology, Shakespeare would go out in a glory of color; but
there is no riot or wild disordered excess in it: he is all
serene Prospero here: a master enchanter -- lord of every hue and
shadow. It is as if the grandest sweetest music of Nature
herself were the accompaniment played to his exit, because he had
achieved perfection and majestic harmony at the last, and went
out her peer.
By G. de Purucker
[This paper was written September 25, 1942, just days before he
died. It appeared THE DIALOGUES OF G. DE PURUCKER, III, pages
The matter of the animal monads entering the human kingdom sounds
complicated; I suppose it is, yet the principles are simple
enough. Suppose we abandon the details and just turn our minds
for a few moments to fundamental principles, and then perhaps we
can get the Ariadne's thread that will make it easy. Details are
important always, but they confuse minds.
Now then, the general principles by which any life-wave or
kingdom of beings moves into the next higher kingdom are the same
for the entire ladder of life, the same in analogical outline,
not necessarily the same in details. This is the first point to
remember, and it will be illustrated by the manner in which
humans move into the lowest of the three Dhyan-Chohanic kingdoms
just above our own.
The next point to remember is that it is the migrating,
peregrinating monads, which are the important things to keep in
mind. If they have attained self-conscious individuality, you
might call them even higher egos. If they have not attained
self-conscious individuality, the term monad is better. Thus, we
speak of the monads of mineral, vegetable, and even animal
kingdoms, although the highest animals, the very highest, are
beginning to become egoic. In other words, the monad is
sufficiently experienced in these low planes to have built around
itself an egoic sheath of consciousness.
The third point to remember is that monads cannot enter into the
next higher kingdom until it is itself ready to receive the
incoming monads from the next lower kingdom. The next higher
kingdom must have very lowest ranges of beings providing bodies
for the monads from the kingdom below, and these monads from the
kingdom below are always the highest from that kingdom, otherwise
they would not be ready to move into the bodies of the lowest of
the next kingdom above.
Thus, the highest of all animals are the anthropoid apes, which
are the most evolved as regards a feeble glimmering of egoity.
During the Fourth Round the egos -- or infant-egos or monads --
of the apes will gradually begin to incarnate into the very
lowest, most savage, and least evolved of the humans of the Sixth
Root-Race. Please remember this has nothing to do with the
BODIES of the apes. The apes as apes will die out during the
Sixth Root-Race, thus freeing the apes to enter into the very
lowest human bodies of the Sixth Root-Race.
The bulk of the animal kingdom will also die out, and go into the
animal Nirvana where they must wait for the next earth embodiment
before they can have their chance to become humans. The reason
is that the bulk of the animals are not yet ready to follow the
Ascending Arc, but the anthropoid apes will be able to do this
and will become in the manner explained very low humans by the
end of the Sixth Root-Race. The opening of the Seventh Root-Race
in this Fourth Round will see anthropoid bodies no more at all.
They will have died out, and their baby egos will be then the
lowest humans. Some animals, many indeed, will have appeared for
a brief while during the Fifth Round on our Fourth globe, but
they will not last long, and will die out more quickly than they
will in the future die out in this Fourth Round. Then indeed,
they will have entered their Nirvana permanently for the
remainder of the Seven Rounds in which our Chain is now working.
All these sidelines of thought are parts of the explanation and
therefore must be brought into the picture.
Thus, the lower kingdom by evolving gradually rises towards the
kingdom immediately above it, and the monads in many manners and
in many ways seek to enter the higher kingdom, just as we humans
seek to become Dhyani-Chohans by evolving more. We can enter the
Dhyan-Chohanic kingdom by several ways. The beasts can enter the
human kingdom by several ways. Please remember I am speaking of
MONADS, not of bodies. No beast body ever becomes a human body.
No human body ever becomes a Dhyan-Chohanic body.
Now with regard to the so-called Animal Monads in the human
kingdom, these animal monads in the human kingdom are the highest
of all possible animal monads, and are the first to become
genuine humans in a new or future Manvantara. They are monads at
one time belonging to the animal kingdom below the human.
Because of karmic links of destiny with a monad, they pass into
the human kingdom as a human animal monad. This happens when
that animal monad out of the animal kingdom has reached what
might be called a semi-human stage, the dawn of egoity, the
beginning of semi-human consciousness, but yet of an animal type.
It is what might be called an animal human, and not a human
human, as human beings are.
Carry out the same line of thought on how human monads enter the
lowest Dhyan-Chohanic kingdom, and you will perhaps understand it
better. Just above I have spoken of the ape monads, or ape baby
egos, entering the lowest stages of the human kingdom during the
Sixth Root-Race. Now what does this mean? It means that an ego
called X of an ape, when it has finished with the animal kingdom
and is seeking embodiment, does not again reincarnate in the
animal kingdom because it is finished with all possible evolution
there. Its tendencies are upward, and it is as it were caught by
a human monad, which will incarnate in one of the lowest races of
the human kingdom.
Thus, this ape, X, when the apes die out towards the end of the
Sixth Root-Race will on its last ape-embodiment be semi-human, or
a little more. Its egoity is beginning to function, and it will
reincarnate as part of the constitution called the animal monad
of a low human being during the Sixth Root-Race, and will become
the human animal monad of that low human of the Sixth Root-Race.
That is what has been happening in the past and provides us human
beings with what we now call our animal monads. They are
graduated animals from the animal kingdom, caught by karmic links
of destiny in the incarnation of a human monad, providing that
human being with his human animal monad.
Now then, at the next Chain-Manvantara, the next embodiment of
our globe, we humans, or human monads, will become the low,
lowest Dhyan-Chohans of that future chain-embodiment when our
earth will be the moon of the new chain. What are now our human
animal monads will then be the distinct human humans of the human
kingdom of that new chain. I hope all this is clear. I am being
much more explicit than I have ever been before, because I think
sufficient time has elapsed for the puzzled minds of our students
to have pretty nearly grasped the truth by their own efforts, and
thus they will not forget that truth.
Let us recapitulate. Animals enter the human kingdom by any
method nature permits. There are several such methods, but they
all reduce to a few general facts. No animal can enter the human
kingdom until that animal's baby ego has become ready to do so,
in other words more or less human. It then enters the human
kingdom by attaching itself because of karmic links of the
spiritual past with an embodying human at some stage in that
human being's destiny, and thus becomes the animal monad of that
human. It is thus that the graduated animal egos become
distinctly humanized, by being for long periods a part of the
constitution of a human being. They finally become fully human,
and are then independent human human beings, or human monads when
the age arrives. Please understand that there are always
exceptions to every rule. But even to touch upon the exceptions
would, I fear, bring about intolerable confusion, for the
teaching is so contrary to anything the West has known for ages
-- contrary to its religion and to its science, and even to its
philosophy, nevertheless, intuitively perceived by poets
sometimes or other uninitiated people who get flashes or glimpses
of the truth.
With the exceptions referred to, it is my belief that no animal
monad can pass directly from the animal kingdom into the human
kingdom as a human being, for there are intermediate stages of
mental and psychical growth that must be passed through before an
animal monad by unfolding itself can become a true human. These
intermediate stages are found in the animal monads in human
beings. I hope these many repetitions are not tiresome, but I
have discovered that unless I repeat and keep repeating thoughts
do not sink home.
Numerous questions in the minds of students are bound to arise,
mainly because they ask questions before they have tried to solve
these questions themselves by careful meditation and brooding
over the matter. So students should not be anxious if questions
arise in their minds about this new raising of a corner of the
veil. Students should themselves endeavor to reconcile what I
have here stated with what they already know before rushing into
questions and expecting to have them answered. The only way of
learning a thing thoroughly is by solving it yourself, and that
is what a true teacher always does. He tries to stimulate
curiosity, to arouse the student's own intuitive perception, and
even will not answer a question plainly, but will insist that the
student answer his own questions. Only when the student is too
confused to get a clear answer from his own mind will the teacher
give another bit of help.
THE PRINCIPLES OF SPIRITUAL TEACHING
By Richard Heinemann
[From THE THEOSOPHICAL FORUM, October 1946, pages 487-91.]
No course of action can so quickly antagonize people, or bring
their worst qualities so explosively to the surface, as merely
keeping your head while they are losing theirs. Since people in
masses "think" emotionally (we call this "crowd psychology"), any
challenge to the conclusions they have reached seems to them an
attack on the worth of their own persons or personalities. Still
more to the point: emotional thinking is so self-centered and
self-satisfied that a sudden awareness of the mere existence of
an opposing idea comes with the wrenching force of an emotional
shock. Especially is this true when the opposing idea lies on
higher mental or spiritual levels than the one it challenges, for
mind and spirit are the great enemies of emotional smugness.
A Jesus always will be crucified, a Socrates always will be
sentenced to drink poison, a Christian always will be thrown to
lions or crocodiles: that is the natural price one pays for being
a Jesus or a Socrates or a Christian. Such persons, by merely
standing for the higher truths of being, attract to themselves
the resentment of all crystallized minds. Apparently, it is
necessary for most men to defeat a superior opponent by material
force, as a sop to their own egotism, before they can consider
his ideas. They must crucify, or at least satisfactorily
persecute their savior before they can recognize him.
In the process of learning, it is necessary first for an idea to
be presented to the consciousness -- that is, it must be able to
get a hearing. This does not mean only that the person must be
told of the idea (for how many thoughts go in one ear and out the
other); it means he must become aware of the idea. In this
process of awakening awareness, sometimes the idea is accepted;
much more often, it stands as a point of irritation in the
consciousness. When an irritation disturbs our physical body,
our first impulse is to scratch it. When the irritation is
emotional, the impulse also is to scratch, and we attempt to do
this by scratching out of existence the person or thing that
In order to "scratch" the annoying idea, we must turn our
attention squarely upon it. This furnishes it the golden
opportunity to sink a few roots into our consciousness. However
we may abuse the unfortunate person who brings it to us,
nonetheless the idea has been planted as a seed in the very heart
of our being. Under proper conditions, it may grow -- and all
learning is entirely a matter of growth. Every happening that in
any way touches the idea from that time on will force us to make
unconscious comparisons, and on these, the seed within us grows.
In the course of time, as we destroy one after another form the
idea takes in the world outside of us, we become vaguely uneasy.
Within us is a stirring; the old, long crystallized ideas
gradually become hollow and undermined, till they may be
shattered by the next challenge from the outside world -- perhaps
by the next savior that we stone to death. Then the miracle
happens, and like Saul of old we hear a voice that cries (within
us): "I am Jesus, whom thou persecutest."
That is why real teachers and real saviors are not concerned
about the way people treat them. In their hearts is the
knowledge that whether they are well received or cast out,
whether they are praised or persecuted, the people nonetheless
must learn from them. A real teacher measures his progress, not
by how easily the people seem to learn, but by how well they
One of the most worthwhile speakers in America today, Sadhu
Grewal, paused at the climax of one of his finest lectures to
explain: "But lectures like this are not teaching!" His audience,
under the illusion that they were actually learning the
information being presented to them, did not understand this deep
point of psychology. However, if you were to ask those people
today what they learned at that lecture (delivered only a few
months ago), you would find that they remember practically none
of it. Scientific figures show that people remember only three
percent of the things they hear at a lecture. Even of this three
percent, it is questionable how much is really learned, and how
much remains as mere "information."
It is only when there is some point in our own experience that we
can use to picture to ourselves the ideas a speaker is trying to
present, that we can even begin to understand them. These points
of experience are the "fertile" spots in our consciousness, on
which ideas may land and begin to grow. In other ideas we may
have a cold, intellectual interest, but they do not become a part
of us -- we do not actually learn them. They may remain in our
minds until some experience opens a "fertile" spot for them, but
until that time we only imagine we understand them. It is here,
indeed, that we may realize why the same statement or idea will
mean different things to the various members of an audience, for
each approaches the statement from his particular background of
experience, and can understand it only on the basis of his
particular points of comparison.
Some teachers have a habit of asking, "Can any one of you give an
example to illustrate this point?" This practice is of doubtful
value. Not only are the "examples" likely to be far-fetched, but
also if the student must consciously search for them, they are
apt to be nothing but intellectual comparisons. Real points of
experience are the ones that leap out and seize hold of an idea
as soon as it is grasped by the brain-mind. Such examples
certainly should be discussed, but the best practice is to
encourage the students to present them spontaneously, just as
they come to mind.
Another criticism of the plan of asking for examples is that it
keeps the students in a tensed state of mind that psychologists
call "voluntary attention." This makes learning difficult, on the
same principle that the person who watches his feet is not a good
dancer, or the person who keeps his muscles tensed is a poor
automobile driver. What is more desirable is "involuntary
attention": the kind that is given because the student simply
becomes lost in the subject. The mind under these conditions is
most receptive; it is absorbed in the learning process, without
any sense of strain. In a classroom, such conditions can be
created only when the relationship between teacher and pupils is
entirely natural and spontaneous, and the students can simply
forget they are in a classroom.
The spiritual leader, who sees all the world as a school and its
men and women as the pupils he must teach, puts all his reliance
on the involuntary kind of attention. Where it is not present,
he creates it. Those who come to him for instruction he very
often drives away, knowing that the more sincere and earnest of
them will return again, and that this delay in the instruction
will sharpen the attention and arouse an eagerness that will
produce something very much like a "fertile spot" in the pupil's
consciousness. The eagerness with which a pupil learns has much
to do with his ability to absorb a lesson into the actual habits
of his thinking.
The true teacher cares nothing for the motives that bring a pupil
to him, but is ready to bless any motive that can arouse the kind
of attention the pupil must have to make him receptive for the
lesson. If a man feels contempt for him, this teacher is not
displeased, for he understands that even the contempt may be a
tool with which he can drive home a lesson in the man's
consciousness. The bishop in LES MISERABLES was a true teacher
when he made something near to a saint of Jean Valjean by
allowing him to steal, and then go unpunished with his "victim's"
blessing, and the stolen goods as a gift. Jesus left some lesson
with every person who came near Him, though in many cases it may
have taken years for such "pupils" to begin to understand the
lessons. What is most important is that Jesus very seldom taught
these lessons by words or preaching, but rather by allowing men
to observe the ordinary conduct of His life -- and compare it
with their own.
The true teacher sets an example, but does not go out of his way
to call attention to it. Least of all does he insist that others
follow it. He allows everyone to draw his own conclusions, for
he knows it is better for a man to do his own thinking, however
badly, than to accept without thinking the judgments even of a
Hate, fear, enmity, contempt, doubt, distrust, or self-seeking
may be negative emotions, but they do center the attention of the
one who feels them on his victim -- and if the "victim" happens
to be a teacher or holy man, he can use that attention to drive
home a lesson. Jesus taught the men who crucified Him. Perhaps
of all His disciples none learned more, or had the lessons driven
home more vividly than the one who betrayed Him. Indeed, in no
other case did Jesus so prove His worth as a teacher as in taking
Judas for a disciple and allowing Himself to be betrayed -- for
He must have known that Judas could learn his particular lesson
only by the experience of trying to live with his own soul after
More often than not, the lessons are not learned from one single
experience. Knowledge and understanding are results of growth,
and are developed by long series of experiences and comparisons.
Whether the actions of a teacher will complete the growth and
bring the knowledge to full flower, or will merely plant the
seed, or perhaps only help to cultivate a seed someone else has
planted, must depend on the circumstances and the "pupil's"
degree of preparation. The true teacher, understanding this,
never grows impatient, and never feels there is any wasting of
Very often, the finest teachers do not call themselves teachers,
or assume any titles that might seem to set them apart. It is
told of Socrates that when men asked him to recommend a
philosopher to them, be would recommend philosophers, without
mentioning himself, so easily did he bear being overlooked.
Epictetus taught his followers that when they were among men who
were discussing philosophic ideas, they should "remain for the
most part silent." He desired them to digest the things they
studied, and express them outwardly through the effect on their
way of life.
Such is true teaching. All else is oratory.
By Victor Endersby
[CHRONICLES ON THE PATH, Part I. This 18-part series appeared in
THEOSOPHICAL NOTES from September 1951 through November 1954.]
All day long a traveler had followed the foothills, his eyes
longingly turning to the snow-capped peaks which all his life
he had yearned to make his home, forgetful of the bawling and
recriminations of the race of men. From this he was banished by
hard duties without foreseeable end, willingly undertaken, but
bitter. At nightfall, he found himself lodged in a poor place
surrounded by the scarring and debris of those to whom a mountain
is only a mountain, a tree only a tree, and sadly composed him to
In that state between sleep and waking, where universes merge and
wisdom comes to those who seek it, folly to others, he saw rise
before him another mountain range, in a land, it seemed, that was
yet to be. From giant rolling buttresses clothed with green
unmarked, unbroken, without smoke, cleft with deep ravines of
mysterious darkness and somber beauty, rose a fairy mass of white
peaks, line upon line and height upon height, merging into the
sky above breathable air, and untrodden by living foot.
Before this stood a crystalline city, whose slender soaring
towers and spirals, magnificent to man but only a symbol, not a
rival of the heights beyond, attested to the aspiration of this
race. Beautiful of color, glittering like jewels was this city.
Its approach was through no garbage heaps, no sordid abodes, no
roaring, wearing highways; but up a vast width of rose-colored
steps traversed by a colorful crowd, whose gay raiment matched
the happy distant murmur of its voices.
By a means unknown, he approached the place and passed through
it, observing, listening, and sensing. It was not such a city,
as he had known. People were not strangers to each other there,
even though met for the first time. Man greeted maid without
hidden design, and maid responded without fear or calculation. A
passerby interested by a word heard from a group, joined that
group without insolence, and was received without affront. All
doors stood open, but when closed for thought and quiet, all
understood, and none were offended. Children played at their own
devising aside from the stern eyes of preceptors, and none took
hurt or received injustice. In the streets, no man carried a
monitory weapon or scanned the crowd for disorder.
The elder did not show dislike for the youth, nor did the youth
show contempt and disdain for elder. The child greeted the
patriarch with a smile, admiring a task of living nearly
finished, that he himself had just begun; gray beard beneath
broad unfurrowed brow parted to show white shining teeth in
return. No sick were there; men came to their term and passed
quietly in the night.
Man and wife passed by without shrill dispute, or growl of
criticism, mate against mate. It was one woman for one man, one
man for one woman, for by sacrifice and service in past lives,
man and maid had long set foot in those paths that crossed at the
proper time and place; and no animal experiments were called upon
to find companions for a lifetime.
Men were busy everywhere, happily and in concert, at tasks
complex and incomprehensible to the Traveler; but no overseeing
power or center of government could he find. One sad place alone
there was: the great museum and library where were kept the
records and relics of elder races. Here men went to study, and
passed again into the bright streets with faces shadowed for a
It struck the Traveler as strange that this sky was laced with no
paths of cacophonous monsters, that the outward roads were filled
with no roaring machinery, but quietly faded out into the fields
and woods ere the horizon was reached; that there were no rushing
incomers and outgoers.
"But this," he thought, "is clear enough. This is Ultima Thule;
within foot-reach lies all of the world that a man could ever
desire. If there is need for this folk to travel, it is on inner
paths of Soul and Self, not on roads of sky or plain."
Glory of city and grandeur of mountain faded, merged with the
lowly room in which his body lay; he knew not for a time upon
which he was truly gazing, and hastened, before the vision was
lost, to question that which was himself but somewhat more than
self; the Voice that sometimes responded in times of high
"Is this to be?" he said. "Or is it fantasy, a fragment of
Devachan born untimely from my sadness and the grime of my daily
"What a man can see, even one man, is what shall be -- in due
time and place."
"How soon? How many dreary ages stretch before, how many
"Ask not how soon. Ask how many. The one determines the other."
"I seem alone."
"Not alone by millions. The Vision is broken, the shards are
misshapen, the substance scattered from pole to pole. Yet in man
as a whole, is the thing complete, even today. The very sins of
man are often his misguided efforts to bring the Vision to life."
"Why then does it not live?"
"Because of fear. Risk is equal to gain, and the path to Heaven
skirts the abyss of hell. Man fears the bliss that he cannot
understand, and clings to the agony that he knows. Men fear one
another; they fear loneliness; they fear themselves; they fear
death, and they fear life."
"How shall I teach them -- I, who fear so many things?"
"Is your fear for self, or others? Has fear ever turned you back
from a duty?"
"For others in the main, I truly believe. To the other question:
No! This I may say."
"Then are you fit to speak of courage. The man who has never
known fear is only a fool. The greater the terror facing one,
the greater the merit of one who turns not from it. Go -- try to
give men COURAGE! When their courage matches what they already
know -- give them more knowledge!"
The sagging wings of Sight folded; the Traveler passed on into
Sleep, happier than for many months. Later came the light of
gray dawn through dingy panes, to replace the Glory, but it would
never wholly fade.
By Gertrude W. van Pelt
[From THE THEOSOPHICAL FORUM, July 1947, page 391.]
When this Theosophical Society had its Headquarters at Point
Loma, it owned in the early part of this century, a large piece
of property on the opposite side of the road, known as Tent
Village. It was so called because of the many tents placed there
by members who could not be accommodated at Headquarters. Later
there was a large building added, which housed members who were
old and weak or chronically ill. Dr. Ross was put in charge of
this department, and for a long time I went there every afternoon
to read to Madame Peterson -- an old member. Madame Tingley, in
driving by, often stopped for a little talk, seeking to inspire
and encourage those who lived there. I remember one occasion
when she spoke very earnestly about Kindness. She said that
probably few could look back over their lives and review their
dealings with others without longing in some instances for
another chance to do better, to act more wisely, with greater
kindness, consideration, and understanding. But these
opportunities have passed and perhaps the actors in them are no
longer here. Yet who, she said, can be sure that he is not daily
meeting similar opportunities -- "another chance" to right an
ancient wrong, to restore a balance disturbed in other lives.
By Boris de Zirkoff
[From a tape recording entitled "Karma, Soul and Ego," made of
a private class held on August 4, 1954.]
At our last meeting, friends, we went rather carefully into the
subject of Karma, into the derivation of the word and the various
ideas which flow from it. At that time, I asked whether two of
our students would prepare a paper on that subject. Jay Mendez
is not here today, but she probably will have her paper next
time. We just have Nancy. I would like to ask her to give us
what she wrote.
> ON KARMA
> I found that the more I thought about it, the more difficult it
> became to write about karma.
> The most comforting, practical, and universal truth, to me, is
> the doctrine of Karma. It is timeless, infinite, and inherent in
> all that is or ever was, for nothing dies. It is painfully
> simple and yet extremely difficult to grasp. It can be easily
> taught to a child, but its many ramifications are beyond the
> reach of the most erudite. All religions, all philosophies of
> any lasting value have taught it.
> What is Karma? The English language is inadequate in defining it.
> Karma could be called "The law of cause and effect," "Action and
> reaction," perhaps even "Retribution." The Bible chooses "As you
> sow, so shall you reap." This saying is, in its utter simplicity,
> as apt a way of explaining the doctrine of Karma as any.
> Absolutely nothing in nature in embodied form is free of this
> universal truth. No action is without a reaction. The action
> immediately and simultaneously brings about a reaction, in direct
> proportion to the action.
> No thought can emanate from an embodied consciousness without its
> result. A thought cannot die. It cannot float at random. It
> cannot lie fallow. It has its impact upon nature, and that
> impact is in perfect balance with the energy expended upon it.
> Nothing can be put into motion without nature feeling the motion
> and understanding it for exactly what it is. Therefore, the
> motion continues in nature and is transformed, so to speak, into
> a resultant motion that will in time justly and inevitably
> boomerang upon the thing that set the motion going in the first
> Karma cannot be called good or bad. It just is. Any deed
> performed because of a desire to help, to share without thought
> of recompense, any deed unselfishly performed is in time going to
> elevate and thus enlighten the individual who performed the deed.
> The motive behind any deed or thought is of immense importance,
> for nature has woven into its fabric basic, fundamental truths.
> Throughout nature, there are the immortal qualities of love,
> self-sacrifice, yearning, faith, humility, and a striving for
> perfection. Thus, it is, and shall always be.
> Man is his own architect. He is the builder of the temple, which
> contains the divine spark. By exercising his free will, by his
> own choosing and making, his temple may be gray and wretched,
> with a shaky foundation, or it may be shining and golden,
> impervious to storms, inaccessible to the unworthy and with
> spires like arms outstretched to the constant stars.
> Things are what they choose to be. They are where they deserve
> to exist. Only they are capable of altering their circumstances.
> The blame or the reward is theirs and theirs alone. This is the
> doctrine of Karma -- ever watchful, ever just, and forever.
> -- Nancy
Thank you. It is an excellent production. It is clear, simple,
and quite to the point. I think we all benefit by this type of
self-expression. We also learn our own inadequacies of
understanding when we try to express our ideas in writing.
Certain thoughts come to a focus, as it were, when we try to
express them. We see the subject in a greater perspective, quite
apart from the fact that our own expression of our understanding
At this particular point, I would like to ask if anybody here
would like to say anything on this, or resume our former
discussion on Karma. Maybe the writer herself would like to say
> I am surprised that nobody else wants to say anything. I brought
> up something in my paper that I am not sure is correct.
Well, and what is the point you have in mind?
> The idea I wonder about regards things set in motion. Anything
> started or thought is concrete. It is a motion that goes off
> somewhere and comes back like a boomerang to where it started.
> Actually, karma is just a transformation. You spoke about how an
> action, once started, simultaneously starts a reaction. Dr. de
> Purucker says so. I thought that out. I could not see how you
> could have a reaction from an action unless it were alike a state
> of motion. It goes out into space somewhere, gradually is
> transformed the way it should be, and comes back as it should. I
> was just wondering about that idea.
Yes, I think it is approximately that way, although I have
considerable uncertainties in my own mind as to the workings of
it. There is no doubt that thought, action, and emotion
originates a train or chain of causation. That chain of
causation moves out, to use our own human terms, into space, but
somehow or other comes back. It is a mysterious subject. We
say, for instance, that individual human beings live, die, go out
on a journey of consciousness, and return to Earth. This is a
simple idea. It becomes metaphysical, and less understandable,
but equally true, if you say that certain ideas originated by us
move out into space, endure somewhere, somehow -- not in any
embodied condition that we know of -- and as the cycles roll
around, these ideas are back with us and manifest themselves
I am not speaking of human beings. I am speaking of ideas,
thoughts, thought forms, currents of thoughts, and emotions.
There is definitely a cyclic return, not only of beings but also
of ideas. To be true, ideas are living things. They are not
abstractions. Still, what kind of gyrations they perform, and
where, before they are back, is anybody's guess. I certainly do
not venture the slightest idea on that subject, although I think
that what has been said so far is relatively correct.
You have there a combination of different ideas, thoughts.
Action and reaction are simultaneous in the world of the
metaphysical, in a world beyond time. This is apparently a fact.
In the world of time and space as understood by us, they are not
simultaneous. That is somehow or other somewhat of an illusion.
The last word on it I am afraid is far beyond our present
understanding. I would not venture any particular idea beyond
that which has already been expressed.
> Did Dr. de Purucker use the word "instantaneous" in this text?
> To me that word says it is an illusion that there is time between
> the cause and the effect. When he says it is "instantaneous," he
> means that one follows the other immediately. In our living in
> the dimension that we do, there is time that elapses between the
> two. In the cosmic timetable, there is no time at all.
> Purucker is correct in that sense. Cause and effect are so
> interblended that there is no separation between the cause and
> the effect. They are simultaneous. The point is this: our brain
> cannot encompass events except in succession, which we measure as
> time. The whole universe -- whether we talk of the matter that
> affects our senses, the mind part, or the emotional aspect -- is
> not a "thing," but a process that has neither beginning nor end.
> It is a process in motion. That process in motion is also a
> totality. It only appears to us as parts.
A school of Buddhism has defined that as the inter-diffusion of
the parts in the whole. In other words, what to us appear to be
separated things are not separated. They say, for instance, that
a chair and a horse are the same thing, and are parts of the
whole, and the whole is the chair and the horse. That is what
they call the inter-diffusion of things. Consequently, in the
time that separates cause and effect, or in you might say
"volume" or "expanse," we can consider things simultaneously.
Our mind takes only one small facet of that totality at the time.
We see things in time, whereas they might happen simultaneously.
The whole process of evolution and the whole Manvantara may be
just a single thought of the Logos, which forms the universe out
of its own substance.
Yes. That is a terrific trend of ideas there. It is true.
Curiously enough, this whole subject of time is little understood
in the Occident. It is only now that the scientific aspect of
our Occidental thought is beginning to occupy itself with the
problem of time. Yet, suppose we put it this way: It is of
course true to say that your previous incarnations are removed
from this one by a certain number of years. It does not matter,
for our argument, whether it is 200 or 2000 years. You had an
incarnation some years ago and you have one now. Is not the
totality of your past lives present in its total result in what
you are now? This is obviously so. Your past does not exist in
any other form than as you are today. You are the complete and
final product of that so-called past.
That in itself is geared to the subject of Karma because from
that angle, Karma is you. You are at any one particular moment
the sum total of all your actions in the past and of all their
reactions. Ask the question from that angle, in such terms as
"What is your Karma?" If you ask it not in terms of events but in
terms of results, your only answer would be: "My Karma is I, as I
am at this particular moment." My Karma will be different ten
minutes from now, because I will have altered in various ways.
Ten minutes later, it will be another result. My totality will
have altered to that extent. That will be my Karma. It will be
I at that time, ten minutes later.
> You have Swabhava, which says that ten minutes from now, you are
> not going to be anything that is not already in you. You are
> right back where you started!
Yes. You will have brought forth somewhat more for what you were
within, with all of its corresponding results and reactions.
I would like to remind us of one thing. It seems to be a
weakness in the trend of human thinking. I have often noticed
among students of Theosophy that when the subject of Karma comes
up, and illustrations and examples of it are brought up for
discussion, it is always the painful, the sorrowful, and the
cataclysmic that is brought up. It is rare when students mention
great happiness, joy, and good fortune as illustration of karmic
results. There are wonderful opportunities to serve and to be a
force for good in the world. There are karmic results of great
growth, or opportunities for renewed work or study, or excellent
health, or any of the things that are on the positive side of the
ledger. When the subject of Karma comes up, one usually thinks
of the negative side of a karmic record. I do not know why it is
so. True enough, the negative side is prevalent in the world of
today. The positive side has its marked and notable cases too.
Then a curious confusion exists between what is called "good" and
"bad" by the ordinary human being. There is no such thing as
"good karma" or "bad karma." That is a human conception and an
illusory one. Some of the worst cases of karmic retribution,
which we can see before our eyes, are probably exceedingly good
from the standpoint of the soul. The soul finds an opportunity,
and learns and grows thereby.
We might mistakenly classify some cases as excellent karma.
Happiness, pleasure, wealth, and great opportunities for all
sorts of things may well be unfortunate. The soul may gradually
fall asleep spiritually, through a trend of affairs in which it
identifies itself with its material concerns. It forgets its
spiritual birthright, only to have it brought back, perhaps
forced out of that condition in some future incarnation by a
Karma should not be considered as good or bad. These human
conceptions do not enter into the operation of karmic law or
function. It is simply the adjustment and re-adjustment of
equilibrium, through both what the human being calls or miscalls
good, and through what he miscalls evil.
Get away from man-made conceptions, from man-made appraisals of
situations. Look at the world against the background of its own
functions, irrespective of human ideas. Then you will glimpse
the actual operation of natural forces, which are completely
unaware of human appraisal of what is good and what is bad.
Even our own intellectual conceptions should show us with great
ease, if we pause and think it over, that what is good for one is
evil for another, that what is evil for one is good for another.
What seems most unpleasant comes out later as having been a
portal to the light. The reverse is true too. This shows how
relative human conceptions are. It shows how little bearing
concepts have upon the impersonal functioning of natural forces.
These forces are activated behind the scenes by spiritual
intelligences, whose views are cosmic, and whose conception of
justice is universal.
THE OCCULT LAW OF CORRESPONDENCE AND ANALOGY
By A. Trevor Barker
[From THE HILL OF DISCERNMENT, Theosophical University Press,
1941, pages 180-88.]
What is the Theosophical conception of the doctrine of
Correspondence and Analogy wholly based upon? It must have a
basis. One of the most ancient axioms upon which it is founded
is the Hermetic one, which goes something like this: True without
error, certain most true: that which is above is as that which is
below, and that which is below is as that which is above, for
performing the marvels of the Cosmos.
"For performing the marvels of the Cosmos" -- that is a strange
phrase, is it not? The key to it you will find in that very
remarkable twelfth chapter of ISIS UNVEILED, II, 635, where HPB
states that "The trinity of nature is the lock of magic and the
trinity in man is the key that fits it." This threefold nature of
man, or if you like to call it sevenfold nature of man, fits the
threefold, sevenfold, or tenfold lock of magic of Nature and the
It is possible by knowledge of these principles of correspondence
to perform the marvels that are recorded as achieved by all the
Great Sages and Magicians of past ages. They all use the same
method: the sovereign will of the illuminated Adept acts through
his unified sevenfold nature upon the corresponding part of that
aspect of matter or Prakriti wherein he desires to produce his
phenomenal results. In other words every one of our sevenfold
principles or vehicles of consciousness is necessarily built of
These principles, or the matter of which they are composed,
necessarily relate us to the corresponding plane of matter in the
vast Universe. Our body relates us to the planet Earth on which
we live. Our Linga-Sharira, our astral body, relates us to the
corresponding principle of the Globe. This continues right
through all the different planes of Nature and being.
Once the Adept is freed so that he can mount at will the stairway
of his own inner being, changing the level at which his
consciousness at any one time is polarized either in his material
physical brain; in the Mayavi-Rupa; in the thought-world. In the
principle of direct knowledge and cognition which we call the
intuition, or Buddhic principle -- aye, even Atman itself once he
can do that -- which is necessarily a very advanced state of
being -- he is freed of all the planes in the Universe; and by a
knowledge of the principles of Nature he can call upon and
utilize any of the sevenfold principles, which contain all the
forces and energies in the Cosmos, and do literally what he
wants, because he is a self-conscious being. This is one aspect
of what is called liberation. He is being free to roam through
the spaces of space -- outer and inner -- on this planet and the
other Sacred Planets of our Solar System. Continuing from the
twelfth chapter of ISIS UNVEILED, Volume II, pages 587-8:
> Nature is triune. There is a visible, objective nature; an
> invisible, indwelling, energizing nature, the exact model of the
> other, and its vital principle; and, above these two, SPIRIT,
> source of all forces, alone eternal, and indestructible. The
> lower two constantly change: the higher third does not.
Immediately now we get an example of correspondence:
> Man is also triune: he has his objective, physical body; his
> vitalizing astral body (or soul), the real man; and these two are
> brooded over and illuminated by the third -- the sovereign, the
> immortal spirit. When the real man succeeds in merging himself
> with the latter, he becomes an immortal entity.
Only an Immortal entity is free of the planes of Nature in the
sense that I have tried to express to you.
I will try to show by analogy, and by direct reference to parts
of the teaching that are well known to you just how this law of
correspondence works. If those axiomatic propositions that I
have just read to you are true, then you will find that you can
understand the first Fundamental Proposition of THE SECRET
DOCTRINE by knowledge of these principles.
You have the threefold principles in operation in the very
highest metaphysical triad that you can think of: the Boundless,
the Absolute, That upon which no speculation is possible,
symbolized in THE SECRET DOCTRINE under the aspect of Eternal
Duration. You also have the abstract idea of Space, and the
abstract idea of Motion. Come down a stage in your thought, and
apply the same rule of correspondence, and you find in the
manifested Universe the whole of Nature pervaded by duality.
What does this corresponding to? It corresponds to motion and to
space. You find it reflected in Spirit and Matter, in your own
consciousness, and in the elements and principles of which the
Cosmos is composed.
Where is the third mysterious, connecting link between Spirit and
Matter that HPB speaks of in this first Fundamental Proposition?
Obviously, that mysterious force that unites Spirit and Matter is
in the nature of man supplied by the bridge that in THE VOICE OF
THE SILENCE is called "antahkarana." It is the power of upward
aspiring thought that connects your lower, personal soul or
perishable self with the Immortal and indestructible Divine Ego.
Note that this mysterious bridge or link on the scale of
correspondence that I am now speaking of depends upon upward
aspiring thought and nothing else. If it is a low kind of
thought, identified with matter, there is no bridge between the
lower part of the man and the higher; and such a man in such a
state of consciousness is unable to use this threefold key which
fits the lock of magic. He can never become a magician; he can
never become an Adept or a disciple, let alone a Master of
Space -- the seven-skinned Mother -- a curious phrase: the
seven-skinned Mother. It means the differentiated matter,
material, or substance of which our Solar system or our Universe
is composed. The most usual way of thinking about the planes of
being, or the substance of which they are composed, is by
reference to the elements and principles. Now, is there any
difference between the principles and elements? The elements you
are probably familiar with under the names of Aether or Akasha,
earth, air, fire, water.
These may not mean a great deal to you, but the principles which
or rather without which these elements would not exist, are
possibly more familiar to you, for they are the sevenfold
dynamic, spiritual and Cosmic energies which course through our
own consciousness, and which keep the planets in rotation and
being. In fact, they are an expression of what the Brahmins
called the Tattwas. What are the Tattwas? They are the forces
that are distributed to us through the Seven Sacred Planets, and
to use the Brahmanical phraseology they are: Adi-tattwa, the
highest, most spiritual one, Anupapadaka-tattwa, Akasha-tattwa,
Vayu-tattwa, Taijasa-tattwa, Apas-tattwa, and Prithivi-tattwa.
Beginning at the bottom the forces come to us: -- Prithivi from
Mercury, Apas from Venus, Taijasa from Mars (that is why it is
red in color), Vayu from Jupiter, and Akasha from Saturn. The
highest spiritual Tattwas come from the two Sacred Planets
connected with the Sun and Moon, and when I say connected with
the Sun and Moon I mean that intra-mercurial planet which some
modern astronomers christened Vulcan, and that mysterious body
which lies behind the Moon -- very close to the Moon, but which
is actually a planet.
There is a planet situated just behind the Moon, and you will say
to me "Well, if there is why don't we see it?" If we had the eyes
to see it we should see it, but there are many more planets than
are ever suspected by astronomers in our Solar system, who now
only recognize seven. We cannot see this particular one, simply
because it is on a plane of matter which is a little bit higher
than our ordinary physical sight will enable us to perceive. It
is, though, the explanation, I believe you will find, as to why
the Moon is called one of the Sacred Planets, which otherwise it
is not, because it is a dead planet. Nevertheless, the Moon is
the transmitter to us of some of the highest spiritual energies
that we receive, as well as the transmitter of some influences
that are distinctly evil.
I will try to elucidate just a little further these tattwic
forces. They are not so mysterious as you think, because each
one of our sevenfold principles is directly related to one of
these planets, and is the particular vehicle of that planet with
which it has a direct correspondence. All these spiritual
energies play through all the principles, because every principle
is sevenfold in its turn, and seven times seven make up the
forty-nine fires spoken of in THE SECRET DOCTRINE.
On page 153, Volume I, THE SECRET DOCTRINE, the correspondence
between the human principles and the seven Globes of the
planetary chain is very clearly set out if you refer to the
diagram. "These invisible companions" (i.e., the invisible
companion Globes of the planet -- our Earth, HPB says)
"correspond curiously to that which we call 'the principles in
Man.'" Rather an odd phrase -- "correspond curiously." One might
be led to suppose that the seven Globes of the Planetary Chain
are actually the higher principles of the planet. Now the
question is, are they, or are they not? This word "curiously"
seems to suggest there is a snag somewhere, so I just point it
out to you.
Here is another passage from THE SECRET DOCTRINE, Volume I, pp.
> It is said that the planetary chains have their "Days" and their
> "Nights" - i.e., periods of activity or life, and of inertia or
> death -- and behave in heaven as do men on Earth: they generate
> their likes, get old, and become personally extinct, their
> spiritual principles only living in their progeny as a survival
> of themselves.
Do you not see the master-hand in that paragraph?
It reminds one of another statement in THE SECRET DOCTRINE, Vol.
I, pp. 203-4, in reference to the birth of a comet:
> A laya center is lighted and awakened into life by the fires of
> another "pilgrim," after which the new "center" rushes into space
> and becomes a comet. It is only after losing its velocity, and
> hence its fiery tail, that the "Fiery Dragon" settles down into
> quiet and steady life as a regular respectable citizen of the
> sidereal family ...
> And what is there so impossible that a laya center -- a lump of
> cosmic protoplasm, homogeneous and latent, when suddenly animated
> or fired up -- should rush from its bed in Space and whirl
> throughout the abysmal depths in order to strengthen its
> homogeneous organism by an accumulation and addition of
> differentiated elements? Why should not such a comet settle in
> life, live, and become an inhabited globe!
We have here some analogy and correspondence.
Bearing in mind that other phrase that the invisible Globes of
the Planetary Chain "correspond curiously" with the principles in
Man, listen to this from p. 159, Vol. I, THE SECRET DOCTRINE:
> Our Earth, as the visible representative of its invisible
> superior fellow globes -- its "lords" or "principles" -- has to
> live, as have the others, through seven Rounds.
That looks as if the higher principles of the Planetary Chain are
the seven principles. I wander how we can resolve the
difficulty. I suggest a reference to THE MAHATMA LETTERS. I am
going to read to you several passages because they are
extraordinarily apropos. Master M is describing the birth of a
Globe. We quote verbatim from pages 70-1, filling in words
missing in the original manuscript:
> Nothing in nature springs into existence suddenly all being
> subjected to the same law of gradual evolution. Realize but once
> the process of the "maha" cycle, of one sphere and you have
> realized them all. One man is born like another man. One race
> evolves, develops, and declines like another and all other races.
> Nature follows the same groove from the "creation" of a universe
> down to that of a mosquito.
In studying esoteric cosmogony, keep a spiritual eye upon the
physiological process of human birth; proceed from cause to
effect establishing as you go along, analogies between the birth
of a man and that of a world. In our doctrine you will find
necessary the synthetic method; you will have to embrace the
whole universe -- that is to say to blend the MACROCOSM and the
microcosm together -- before you are enabled to study the parts
separately or analyze them with profit to your understanding.
Cosmology is the physiology of the universe spiritualized, for
there is but one law.
You notice we are to "keep a spiritual eye upon the physiological
process of human birth." Why? Because it gives the key to what
happens in the inner worlds. We have discussed the relation or
correspondence between the birth of a little child and its
rebirth in the after life in the state of Devachan, and you have
here an exactly analogical process.
The birth of a child is preceded by a gestation period, in which
the child is unconscious, and the birth of a man in the spiritual
world after death is preceded by a gestation period in which he
is unconscious. Then when he is reborn he begins his spiritual
meditation at that point where his first conscious spiritual
memories of his last earth life began, and then working them out,
corresponding exactly to the course of the man on earth.
We all experience this. We know that we are born on this planet;
we know that we must die; and we can reason from this, by this
occult law of analogy and correspondence that because it happens
to man therefore it must happen to planets, and it must happen to
solar systems. All wake and sleep, sleep and wake; there is day
and night, there are the seasons of the year, the rising and
falling of the tides, the sun and the moon -- all these things
reflecting the law of analogy and correspondence in themselves --
showing the marvelous interdependence of every part of the
Universe and its perfect harmony.
Let us turn to another passage describing the birth of a world
(THE MAHATMA LETTERS TO A.P. SINNETT, p. 94):
> Now the life impulse reaches "A" or rather that which is destined
> to become "A" and which so far is but cosmic dust. A center is
> formed in the nebulous matter of the condensation of the solar
> dust disseminated through space and a series of three evolutions
> invisible to the eye of flesh occur in succession, viz., three
> kingdoms of elementals or nature forces are evoluted: in other
> words the animal soul of the future world is formed; or as a
> Kabbalist will express it, the gnomes, the salamanders, and the
> undines are created. The correspondence between a mother-globe
> and her child-man may be thus worked out. Both have their seven
Those seven must necessarily correspond with the seven planetary
types. This is important. Please note it because there are in
everything in nature, these sevenfold Cosmic energies showing
themselves, so that there are seven main types or classes of
minerals, -- or may I put it this way: that every mineral will
fall into one of the seven tattwic and therefore planetary
groups. The same is true in the vegetable world. Look how
important this is from a physiological point of view, in the cure
of disease, for example.
The occult therapist of ancient days knew the Cosmic relation and
correspondence between planets, minerals, plants, animals and
man, and was therefore enabled to select the particular mineral
or herb which corresponded to the nature of the patient, and so
cured him: this is what we have to rediscover.
The homeopaths have got on to this principle, knowingly or
unknowingly. Possibly Hahnemann, the originator of the system,
knew. He seems to have been a man with occult knowledge of some
kind. In homeopathy, it is possible to find for each individual
what is called his constitutional remedy, which always seems to
benefit that person, and is therefore worth a very great deal to
the patient when once it is discovered. I think it will be found
that the plant or mineral from which the medicine was made
belonged to the same planetary essence as the patient, and thus
gives more satisfactory results, being so to speak in harmony
with his own nature.
Now to continue the quotation from page 94 of THE MAHATMA
> In the Globe, the elementals (of which there are in all seven
> species) form (a) a gross body, (b) her fluidic double
> (Linga-Sharira), (c) her life principle (Jiva); (d) her fourth
> principle kamarupa is formed by her creative impulse working from
> center to circumference; (e) her fifth principle (animal soul or
> Manas, physical intelligence) is embodied in the vegetable (in
> germ) and animal kingdoms; (f) her sixth principle (or spiritual
> soul, Buddhi) is man (g) and her seventh principle (Atma) is in a
> film of spiritualized Akasha that surrounds her.
There we have the basis for understanding what is meant by the
seven principles of the Globe. Man is actually the Buddhic
principle of the planet on which he lives. Relate that to the
occult hierarchy -- the Buddhas, the Bodhisattvas, the
Dhyan-Chohans, the Wondrous Being, and the Silent Watcher -- and
you can understand something of what is meant by man being the
sixth or Buddhic principle of the Globe on which he lives.
Dedicated to the Theosophical Philosophy and its Practical Application