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3. Spiritual Effects of the Zodiacal Constellations. - Part 10

3. Neptune—Mystical consciousness or that innate sensitivity which leads unerringly to the higher vision, to the recognition of the inter-relation involved in man's [307] essential duality during the process of manifestation, plus the activity of the mediator.

You have, therefore, the conscious, integrated Self, functioning with full occult knowledge and also with mystical perception when the influences of Leo, focussed through the Sun, Uranus and Neptune, have been carried adequately forward in the life of the advanced disciple. This is one of the reasons why Leo is a sign of such paramount importance and why the intelligent Leo subject can usually attain his goal, once he accurately perceives that objective.

This sign has frequently been described as the "battlefield of the Forces of Materialism and the Forces of Light." It is occultly regarded as one of the most material signs, in-as-much as selfish desire for possession of material objectives can be peculiarly present and the display of the possessive spirit can violently control; yet, at the same time, the advanced Leo person can function as the "inspired spiritual Sacrifice." He is then sensitive to world conditions and freed from personal desires.

Before individual man can achieve initiation, he must be fully self-conscious, mystically oriented and occultly developed. He must be aware of himself as he essentially is—a soul involved in form which is itself developed and unfolded through soul activity; he must be a developed mystic, capable of pure vision, motivated by spiritual intent and able to perceive the uses of inherent sensitivity; he must also be a trained occultist, mentally polarised and profoundly aware of the realities, forces and energies of existence and, therefore, free from the ordinary glamours and illusions which colour the reactions and life of the average man. He is then governed by the physical Sun, motivated by the energies pouring from "the heart of the Sun" (via [308] Neptune) and bringing about at-one-ment through the forces which are reaching him (via Uranus).

Beyond these two distant planets, lies another planet as yet undiscovered, though speculation is rife about it, owing to certain unexplained movements of the planet Neptune. It is through this planet that the Forces (as they are related to Leo and Aquarius) are focussed in one potent stream of force; these pour into our planetary life during the month of August, and distribute themselves, via Uranus and Neptune. You have, therefore, in this connection:

 

LEO   AND   AQUARIUS

The physical Sun

Heart of the Sun

Central spiritual Sun.

 

/

 

 

The undiscovered planet.

 

 

/

 

 

Uranus and Neptune.

 

 

/

 

 

The human Hierarchy.

 

 

/

 

 

The animal Kingdom.

 

 

Charts of the cosmic lines of directed forces such as the above can be given for all the energies of the constellations and planetary forces, but this is the only one I choose, at this time, to indicate, because it is of major importance to humanity; the others might prove misleading, given man's present point of intelligent understanding and influence.

I would here call to your attention that, through these directing planets, the following rays are controlling factors in the chart of the Leo subject:

1. The Sun—2nd ray—love-wisdom.

2. Uranus—7th ray—organisation or directed manifestation.

3. Neptune—6th ray—idealistic one-pointedness. Devotion to an objective.

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In the perfected Leo, the loving self-conscious soul (2nd ray) carries its power of expression straight through from its own plane to the plane of exterior manifestation, but preserves at the same time its interior control (Uranus) and from that point of achievement, proceeds to make its ideal objective (Neptune) a fact in consciousness, through sensitivity to the higher vibration and directed intelligent service of the Plan. Ponder on this summation.

When Uranus controls, the Leo person is significantly the true observer, detached from the material side of life, but utilising it as he pleases. His spiritual consciousness is capable of great expression and he can be (as has oft been pointed out by astrologers) both an electric, dynamic leader, a pioneer in new fields of endeavour and also a magnetic centre of a group whether the group is small, as in a home, or vast as in a nation. He is then polarised above the diaphragm, for the lower more material aspects of life have really no great appeal to him; he is then profoundly conscious of his own identity, and this makes him dwell definitely in a state of self-awareness, with its consequently abstracting powers. He is instantly aware, once he is spiritually awakened, of his motivating impulses, and this leads him to an imposed self-discipline—the thing the Leo subject sorely needs and which must always be self-imposed and self-applied for he brooks no disciplinary measures which others may seek to impose. Discipline imposed by people upon the Leo person leads invariably to revolt and rebellion and the expression of that which the discipline is intended to eradicate. Discipline imposed by himself leads to the perfection of which he is notably capable. It is this innate ability to control which frequently gives the Leo subject an apparently negative attitude to life; he inevitably believes that his destiny is determined and that all that he has to do [310] is simply to be; he refuses often then to change or to take action, and when this is carried too far it leads to an unexpectedly futile life. The "lion must emerge from its lair," and this injunction is badly needed by Leo aspirants. It will, when followed, lead the self-centred Leo consciousness into the decentralised, selfless Aquarian awareness. It will alter the self-service of Leo into the group service of its polar opposite, Aquarius. It might appropriately be added here that the prayer or voiced aspiration of the true Leo person can be expressed in the words of Christ, so well known to all of us: "Father, not my will but thine be done."

I would also call your attention to another interesting fact in connection with this sign. No planet falls in Leo and no planet is exalted in this sign, whilst the power of both Uranus and Saturn is somewhat lessened, except in the case of the initiate who responds powerfully to the esoteric influence of Uranus. The same basic teaching is here conveyed as was taught by the Sun ruling exoterically, esoterically and hierarchically. Leo in its consciousness is the dominant self-aware agent and has therefore the control and can—because of this—remain uninfluenced. This fact will be increasingly understood as the advanced Leo subject makes his appearance. He will be distinguished by his personal freedom from outside control. He knows innately that he is king of himself, the ruler of his own life and, therefore, no planet is exalted and likewise no planet falls. The power of the mind, as symbolised by Uranus, is lessened, for it is not the mind which in reality controls but the Self, or Soul, using and controlling the mind. The man is not then conditioned by his surroundings or life events but rules them with deliberation, bringing out of circumstances and environment that which he requires. Saturn, therefore, the Lord of Karma, has his power lessened in [311] this sign. It is for this reason that Sepharial is incorrect when he gives Saturn as the ruler of the first decanate. The three decanates are given by him as being ruled by Saturn, Jupiter and Mars. Alan Leo is, however, nearer the truth when he gives us the Sun, Jupiter and Mars.

Self-rule through initial conflict, carried to a successful issue and blessed by the beneficence of Jupiter, is the true history of the advanced Leo aspirant, and this thought and the objective result of this realisation is summed up for us in the two word mottoes of this sign:

1. And the Word said: Let other forms exist. I rule because I am.

2. I am That and That am I.

I Am—the Word of the self-conscious, selfish, individual Leo.

I Am That—the Word of the Leo subject who is rapidly gaining the higher consciousness and preparing for fresh and universal expression in Aquarius.

CANCER, THE CRAB

This sign is not an easy one for the average student to understand for it is the polar opposite—psychologically speaking—of the state of group consciousness towards which humanity is, at this time, tending. It is difficult for the casual student to distinguish accurately between mass consciousness and group consciousness. Human beings stand today at a midway point, generally speaking, between these two states of mind, though perhaps it might be more correct to say that a fairly large minority are becoming group conscious, whilst the majority are emerging out of the mass conscious stage and becoming self-conscious individuals. [312] This accounts for much of the present world difficulty and for the clash of idealisms. The two groups bring a different approach to the world problems as we now find them. We have, therefore, three signs which (from the angle of consciousness) are closely connected yet are widely separate and different in effect.

1. Cancer—mass consciousness—instinctual awareness.

2. Leo—self consciousness—intelligent awareness.

3. Aquarius—group consciousness—intuitional awareness.

With much of this we have already dealt and there is no need for repetition as we study the polar opposites of the signs already considered. I do not intend to refer unduly and in detail to points with which you are already familiar, save to bring to your attention the beautiful and synthetic unfolding of the divine Plan.

This sign is, as you already know, one of the two gates of the zodiac because through it souls pass into outer manifestation and to the appropriation of form, and subsequent identification with it for many long cycles. It is "the gate which stands wide open, broad and easy to pass through and yet it leads unto the place of death and to that long imprisonment which precedes the final revolt." It is allied with material nature, and with the mother of forms, just as the other gate, Capricorn, is allied with spirit, the father of all that IS.

In this sign lies hid the whole problem of the Law of Rebirth. Reincarnation is implicit in the manifested universe and is a basic and fundamental theme underlying systemic pulsation. There are certain things which I would like to make clear in connection with reincarnation.

This sign, Cancer, being concerned primarily with the world of causes, has about its inner meaning much indefiniteness [313] and an apparently vague subtlety which proves most elusive to the ordinary thinker. This also is true of all the signs which go to the forming of the Cardinal Cross of the Heavens. In the last analysis, it is only the initiated disciple who can fathom the true meaning of these zodiacal influences as they pulsate throughout the manifested universe, because they are primarily the expression of spirit or life more than of soul or body. Therefore, until after the third initiation—as you have oft been told—there is little to be known or said about that "mysterious essence which is divinity in motion." When you, for instance, read that the keynotes of this sign can be expressed in the Biblical phrase "the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters" does it, in reality, mean anything specific to you? You might reply by saying that it means, God moved in substance and produced by moving the outer tangible forms. But does that truly convey to you an intelligible truth? In Cancer, God breathed into man's nostrils the breath of life and man became a living soul. In these words, you have established the relation which exists in the mind of God between spirit (the breath of life) the soul (consciousness) and man (the form). However, does that statement convey an intelligible concept to your mind? I think not, because the synthesis of the final relation is beyond the average grasp and its `linking' or essential unity (lying as it does outside of consciousness and known reality) takes place first of all in this sign—one of the most ancient of the signs and one of the first to be recognised and established as an influencing factor by ancient humanity.

I state a basic truth—vaguely acknowledged by you—that in Aries the essential substance of manifestation awoke to renewed activity under the impact of divine desire, impelled by the divine Breath, by divine Life or Spirit. In [314] Cancer this living substance assumed a triple differentiated relationship to which we give the names of Life (Aries) of Consciousness (Taurus, the next sign to Aries) and manifested duality (Gemini, the sign preceding Cancer) and these three, blended together, came into outer manifestation in Cancer, thus completing an esoteric quaternary of great importance. Here the first major fusion, inchoate and unrealised, took place. In Libra, these reach a point of balance and of a somewhat static equilibrium (later to be disturbed in Scorpio), so that this essential triplicity appears clearly in relation to each other. In Capricorn, the sign of initiation, this basic triplicity begins to return to the earlier state of the "breath of spirit" but, this time, with full awareness and properly fulfilled organisation, so that form is a perfect expression of the soul and the soul is sensitive and responsive to the pulsations of the One Life, as that Life reveals, through its activity, the perfect will of the Logos.

The secret (so-called) of the Cardinal Cross is the secret of Life itself, just as that of the Fixed Cross is that of the soul or the mystery of self-conscious entity, whilst the Mutable Cross holds hid the mystery of form. In these words, you have the key to the secret of manifestation as a whole and to that mystery which was revealed to Christ at the final crucifixion and to which He testified His understanding reaction in the triumphant utterance recorded in The New Testament: "My God, My God, why hast Thou forsaken Me." He then left the Fixed Cross and the Identity which has hitherto been His and identified Himself with that which was then revealed. To these words, thus translated somewhat inaccurately in the Christian Bible, there are three meanings or true significances. The translation hinted at in The Secret Doctrine (S.D. II. 613), [315] "The robe, the robe, the beautiful robe of my strength no longer serves" expresses the inner revelation of the Mutable Cross, as it was revealed to the Saviour, looking at life from the angle of the soul. In the words quoted above "My God, My God, why hast Thou forsaken Me," the mystery of the Fixed Cross was shown to Him and the secret of the Cardinal Cross was, for the first time, held before His eyes. The words, embodying that central mystery, have never yet been given out. One of the factors which distinguished the Christ from all preceding world Saviours was the fact that He was the first of our humanity Who, having achieved divinity (and this many have done), was permitted to see the "golden thread of light and of living life which links the light within the centre of all the manifested Crosses"; He was allowed to know the meaning of life as it expressed itself in the Cosmic Crucifixion, which is an episode of cosmic life and not of death, as is generally supposed.

Hercules comprehended the true meaning of the Mutable Cross and, with full knowledge, mounted the Fixed Cross, with all its attendant difficulties and labours. The Buddha comprehended, through complete illumination, the meaning of both the Mutable and the Fixed Crosses, for the secret of revelation in Taurus was His, just as the secret of directed energy in Scorpio was the source of the strength of Hercules. But the Christ, knowing both the above secrets, also understood with a living comprehension, the mystery of the Cardinal Cross, because the light of the Transfiguration (undergone in Capricorn) revealed to Him the glory and transcendent mystery.

There are two words also which convey the purpose and intent of expression upon the Cardinal Cross. They give the reason why the two "Doors of the Zodiac" open [316] wide to the impulse and demand of the divine Spirit. One is the word "self-preservation" which leads to the impulse to incarnate in Cancer, which is the Door to the physical plane expression of spirit. This impulse (when the form is the prime object of the attention of the soul and that with which it primarily identifies itself) brings about the stage of static concretion in the earth sign Capricorn. The other word is "immortality" which is the divine aspect of self-preservation; it is the major conditioning factor in the creative process and leads to the whole revelation of evolution, to the recurrent appearance of life in form, and to the revelation of life in form. In Capricorn, at the third initiation, this life aspect assumes primary importance.

You will see, therefore, why the Cardinal Cross is so mysterious; also why both Cancer and Capricorn are so little understood by modern astrology and why, in the last analysis, only the initiated Sons of God can grasp the significance of the four signs which comprise the Cardinal Cross, or understand the relation which exists between the four major divine energies which—pouring through the four arms of this Cross—produce the vortex of force (a synthetic force) which constitutes that "pool of pure, fiery light" through which all those who take the higher initiations must eventually pass. Those taking the first two initiations must tread the Path as it passes through the Burning Ground. Those taking the higher initiations have to plunge into the sea or pool of fire which is essentially the fire of God as it has been cleansed from every aspect of the material form through the complete purification of desire.

The entire subject of rebirth is but little understood at present. Its modern presentation and the emphasis which has been laid so strongly on small and unimportant details have distorted and diverted the wide sweep of the subject [317] and ignored the true import of the process; the broad general lines of the incarnation process have been largely overlooked. In the debate as to the length of time a man is out of incarnation and in the consideration of foolish items of unproved and unprovable information, and in the puerile reconstruction of the past lives of theosophically inclined people (none of them based on any truth), the real truth and the real beauty of the theme have been lost to sight.

Cancer is one point of the watery triplicity, and the symbolism which underlies the three water signs is most interesting in one particular direction. You have, as you know, the Crab, the Scorpion and the Fish Goddesses of the sign Pisces. In ancient Lemuria, the symbol of Pisces was a woman with the tail of a fish, and of this symbol the legendary mermaid is the memory. It was only in late Atlantean times (when the conscious sense of duality was becoming present in the minds of the advanced humanity of the period) that the woman part of the symbol was dropped altogether and the two linked fishes took the place of the fish Goddesses. You have, therefore, the Crab, the Scorpion with the sting in its tail and the Fish. The slow moving Crab, identified with its dwelling place and carrying its house upon its back, lives upon the land (physical plane life) and also in the sea (the life of the emotions); the Scorpion is rapid in movement, deadly in its effect upon men around it and is a creature of the land; it is also the symbol of the transformed Crab and the result of the evolutionary process, and indicates the dangerous nature of the man who is not transformed and is therefore harmful and hurtful to others; the Fishes indicate the man from whom the symbol of materiality has been taken by the removal of half of the original symbol, thus indicating freedom from matter. The three water signs give us, therefore, a brief and symbolic [318] history of man's growth and true personality development. It is a picture of the law of cause and effect. These thoughts you can elaborate for yourself and thus arrive at the evident implications.

There is also a significant relationship between five signs which are deeply esoteric in their nature and their effects when swept into this particular interplay. They are only called into activity during the return half of the wheel of life or the "wheel of living action or of conscious undertaking" as it is called in the Old Commentary. This name is given to the wheel as it turns anti-clockwise from Aries to Pisces via Taurus. This fivefold relationship is only established upon the Path of Discipleship and is brought about by the esoteric linking of Cancer-Virgo-Scorpio-Capricorn-Pisces. In the future horoscopes of disciples, this significant interplay of forces will be recognised as dominating the chart at a particular and peculiar stage of discipleship. In this case, disciples will be born in one or other of these signs or with one of other of these signs rising.

You have two signs of water and earth (Cancer and Virgo) in the stage of sub-conscious emphasis wherein everything is latent and hidden. Human consciousness is only embryonic in Cancer, for it is the mass mind which dominates and not the individual mind. In Virgo, the Christ life or consciousness is hidden and the Christ Child is as yet embryonic in the womb of matter and of time, and during this stage, the emphasis is upon the form which veils and hides the reality. The human soul and the divine soul (the essential duality) are there but their presence is not easily detected. In Scorpio comes a point of transition, of change and of re-orientation. That which has been hitherto hidden appears and is brought to the surface by means of the experience, the tests, the trials and the "sting of life." In Capricorn—[319] as a result of the effects of the influences of Cancer, Virgo and Scorpio—the disciple begins to demonstrate the capacity to express the life of two kingdoms, at least in some measure, and is a developed human being and also a citizen of the kingdom of God. Therefore, for an initiate and for a period of three incarnations, the four signs of revelation (Cancer, Virgo, Scorpio and Capricorn) intensify their effect upon him, until in the fourth incarnation he begins to respond to the inner influence of Pisces. He thus demonstrates his ability to react to the Shamballa influence and, when this influence is established, he goes out to salvage and to save. He acts consciously as a world mediator. Therefore, it might be stated that:

1. In Cancer, the influence of the human Hierarchy begins to make its presence felt and to include the dualism of man. This emerges clearly in Virgo. Soul and body are closely related and knit together in one form. Man is a conscious personality, and this is a result of the Cancer experience, consummated in Virgo.

Such is the way of humanity. The human centre is active.

2. In Scorpio, the influence of the occult Hierarchy begins to set its seal on the human being, and his essential duality is put to the test. This is preparatory to a new and higher unity. He is at the miserable stage of being neither the soul nor the form—the stage of transition.

Such is the way of the disciple. The hierarchical centre is affecting him powerfully.

3. In Pisces, the influence of Shamballa claims the initiate as its field of activity and the dualism of soul and spirit emerges instead of that of soul and body which has hitherto been of major importance. The power of the [320] form to hold the soul in captivity has been negated and tests and trials of the initiate up to the third initiation are directed to this end.

Such is the way of the initiate.

You will note the interesting fact that you have here nine signs which carry a man from the stage of imprisonment in form to the freedom of the kingdom of God, from the state of embryonic consciousness to the full flower of divine knowledge, from the condition of human awareness to the conscious wisdom of the initiated disciple. These nine signs are strictly expressive of human unfoldment—conscious and superconscious, though beginning with the mass awareness of Cancer. There are three signs, preceding these, which provide the subtle or subjective realities of the will-to-be (Aries), the desire-to-know (Taurus) and the establishment of relationship (Gemini), and these constitute the triple incentive to the manifestation of man and of the human kingdom. They correspond cosmically to the logoic, the monadic and spiritual planes to which the higher initiate has access or when dealing with the entire concept on a lower turn of the spiral and in connection with ordinary man, they correspond to the mental, the astral and the etheric vehicles of man. They are, therefore, related to the highest and the lowest expression of human life. I have in the above ideas given you several hints of vital importance. One of the symbols of an initiate of a certain degree is that of the five-pointed star with a triangle in the centre; this is a reference to the energy of the watery triangle with which we have just been concerned and to the fivefold linking which has been established in the consciousness of the initiate.

We come now to a consideration of the rulers of this sign and to a study of the planets which act as focal points [321] and as distributing agents for certain cosmic energies. Much has been earlier indicated along this line, and a true understanding of the nature of these impacting energies can only be grasped as we continue with our studies and investigate these signs in the relation which they assume as we study them in connection with other signs, claiming the same planetary rulers. There is one point which I would like to make clear and that is that in the two rulers of this sign—the Moon and Neptune— you have the symbols of a close relationship between the Mother of all Forms and the God of the Waters, that is between the two planets. In this esoteric marriage, you have pictured for humanity a major synthesis of form and of desire-sensitivity and, consequently, a true statement of the stage of consciousness which we call Atlantean. There is much of this today and of this stage, mass sensitivity and mass identification with form and with forms is the significant indication and the outstanding characteristic of Cancer and its subjects. The Moon, however, relates Cancer to two other signs and these form a cosmic triangle. They are Cancer-Virgo-Aquarius. In this combination, you have the sign of mass-consciousness, the sign of the Christ-consciousness and the sign of universal consciousness very closely related to each other and all of them through the medium of the influence of Neptune, which the Moon veils.

Like Leo, which is ruled in all its three expressions (orthodox, esoteric and hierarchical) by the Sun, Cancer is the only other sign which is ruled by only one planet, though in orthodox astrology, the Moon is substituted for Neptune because it is the form nature which is dominant in the longest stage of human unfoldment, just as esoterically, it is the feeling-sensitive nature which dominates the average man; it is with this stable tendency that the disciple has to [322] wrestle.  In the mass mind (of which Cancer is the truest expression), it is fortunate that Neptune is veiled by the Moon and that the form fails to register or step down many of the impacts to which the true man is sensitive. Average humanity is not yet fully equipped to bear the full range of these impacts, to handle them constructively or to transmute them and interpret them accurately. Upon the Path of Discipleship and along the line of esoteric development, one of the major difficulties and great problems of the disciple is his extreme sensitivity to impacts from every side and his rapid ability to respond to contacts coming from "all points of the compass, from every angle of the zodiacal wheel and from that which is within as well as from that which is without, from that which lies above, below, and upon every hand," as the Old Commentary expresses it. It is also as difficult and hard for the average student of modern times to grasp the mass-consciousness of Cancer as it is for him to grasp the group-awareness or the universal consciousness of Aquarius and to this final development, humanity is hierarchically related by the Moon, veiling Neptune. The average human being is just beginning to grasp the stage of the individual Christ consciousness of Virgo to which he is related by the same planet.

The unveiled Neptune relates Cancer to no other constellation or sign, and this fact is of very great importance, because it indicates the fact that when a man is an initiate, he does not react to ordinary feeling, sentiment or to personality relations as they express themselves in pleasure or pain. All these are surmounted and eventually the watery life of emotional reaction is superseded by the life of true and of inclusive love. Soul control esoterically "obliterates" the Moon and all traces of Neptunian life. The initiate is no longer ruled by the Mother of Forms or by the God of [323] the Waters. When the "waters break and are carried away," the Mother gives birth to the Son and that individual spiritual entity then stands free. I would ask you to ponder upon this point.

These two—the Moon and Neptune—are, therefore, the direct influences which are brought to bear upon the Cancer subject and thus lead to the unfoldment of the form of life and of the emotional-astral body. The supreme usefulness of these aspects will be grasped if you will intelligently realise that without the form and without the ability to bear in mind the need to respond sensitively to the environing conditions and circumstance, the soul would never awaken to knowledge in the three worlds and, therefore, would never know God in manifestation.

Indirectly, and via the influences of the Cardinal Cross (of which Cancer is a part), the Cancerian subject is affected by or influenced by five other planets, which are Mars, Mercury, Uranus, Venus and Saturn. The Cancerian subject becomes responsive to the uses of conflict (Mars), to the functioning of the light of intuition (Mercury) and to the cosmic pull of Uranus, plus the intellect of Venus and the presentation of opportunity (Saturn). These, however, play subjectively upon the dweller in the form and are not consciously registered as potencies by the individual for many aeons of time and not until the life of the form and the reaction to sensitive emotion-feeling has played an active and an educational part in the awakening of the mind. Once that awakening of desire and its transmutation into the higher aspiration has taken place, then the Virgo influence comes in and the responsive soul—developed by the five indirect influences of the Cardinal Cross—begins its active conscious participation in the drama of life. Thus the direct and the indirect influences of the seven planets play their [324] varied parts in man's unfoldment, and students would find it of interest and of value to relate the effects of these seven planetary forces to the unfolding seven principles of man.

Let us now briefly consider for a few minutes the effect of the ray influences as they focus through the seven planets upon the man born in the sign Cancer.

It is here that there will be found certain basic indications as to the nature and the processes of the Law of Rebirth. It would appear that as yet only two rules are posited in connection with the return of an ego to physical incarnation. The first is that if perfection has not been achieved then the soul must return and continue the perfecting process upon the Earth. The second is that the impulse predisposing the ego to such action is some form of unsatisfied desire. Both these statements are true in part and generic in effect but they are only partial truths and incident to larger truths which have not yet been sensed or noted accurately by esotericists; they are secondary in nature and are expressed in terms of the three worlds of human evolution, of personality intent, and of time-space concepts. Basically, it is not desire which prompts return but will and knowledge of the plan. It is not the need for achieving an ultimate perfection which goads the ego on to experience in form, for the ego is already perfect. The main incentive is sacrifice and service to those lesser lives that are dependent upon the higher inspiration (which the spiritual soul can give) and the determination that they too may attain planetary status equivalent to that of the sacrificing soul. It is in order eventually to negate the space-time concept and to prove it an illusion that the door in Cancer opens to the sacrificing, serving soul. Bear this always in mind as you study the subject of rebirth. In themselves, rebirth and reincarnation are misleading [325] terms and "cyclic impulsion," "intelligent purposeful repetition" and "conscious in-breathing and out-breathing" would describe more accurately this cosmic process. It is, however, difficult for you to grasp this idea, for it necessitates the ability to identify oneself with the One Who thus breathes—the planetary Logos—and the entire theme must therefore remain relatively obscure until initiation has been taken. Esoterically speaking, the point of greatest interest lies in the fact that it is group rebirth which is taking place all the time and that the incarnation of the individual is only incidental to this greater happening. This has been largely ignored or forgotten because of the intense and selfish interest in personal experience and living, evidenced in the speculative details anent individual return given in the current so-called occult books, most of which are largely inaccurate and certainly unimportant.

An intelligent understanding of the Plan is needed before the real truth anent reincarnation can emerge with clarity in the public consciousness. Groups of souls come into incarnation cyclically and together in order to further the Plan and permit that interplay to proceed between spirit and matter which makes manifestation possible and which extends the working out of the divine ideas as they exist in the Mind of God. When the Plan (as the Hierarchy understands it) is more familiar in its objectives and its mode of functioning upon the outer plane of life, we shall see a complete change in the presentation of the teaching concerning the Law of Rebirth. We shall see more clearly the existent synthesis of:

1. The divine plan as it manifests in time.

2. The basic relations as they manifest in space.

3. The developing effects as they demonstrate in groups.

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4. The evolving understanding as intellect merges into the intuition.

5. The fivefold nature of the logoic expression as it unfolds itself through the five kingdoms.

and this, when correctly intuited, will produce a revelation, and a presentation of this abstruse theme beyond anything at this time sensed by man. It is one of the secrets of the first initiation and these secrets are today in process of externalisation.

It will be found that rebirth is, in truth, a magical and magnetic interplay between the form side of life and life itself. This interplay is consciously undertaken by the soul which is the product of the two related factors. The above statement is, in itself, complex and difficult and far from easy to grasp; it however expresses a significant fact which the Old Commentary phrases as follows:

"Those who are demanding to be saved have cried aloud. Their voices penetrate into the formless world and there evoke response.

"Those who in distant aeons have pledged themselves to save and serve respond. Their cry too rings forth and, ringing, penetrates into the dark and distant places within the worlds of form.

"And thus a vortex is established and kept alive by that constant dual sound. And then a touch is made and for a space and during time, the two are one—the Saving Souls and the Units to be served.

"Slowly the vision of the Saving One becomes a light which guides the Crying Ones into the place of light."

I would suggest to investigators that the entire theme of "cyclic impulse" be approached from the angle of the group, forgetting, as this is done, the glamour of the personality [327] impress. The sweep of known history will aid in this, indicating—as it does—the possibility of clarification and the usefulness of classifying and isolating group activity and character down the ages. When the major reincarnating groups are thus distinguished and their work for the fourth kingdom along many lines is more clearly seen then the whole subject will be better understood, evoking the play of the intuition. This demonstrates a second fact of importance, namely that, as yet, it will only be possible to trace the progress of advanced souls in incarnation and not trace, at this time, the cyclic appearing of the unevolved. They are the "material units" which have to be saved by the more advanced. The theme of service and sacrifice runs, unrecognised, through history. The key to the understanding of these reincarnating, saving factors lies in a coming intuitive ability to recognise the reincarnating groups, as groups and not individuals, through their ray qualities, and it was for this purpose that I gave in Destiny of the Nations a statement as to the rays governing certain nations. Groups are governed by the astrological signs and by the rays just as individuals are, and these rays affect them, via the ruling planets. I have here opened up to you a very wide field of research and I have indicated a most interesting new form of historical investigation and record. The history of the future will be the history of the evolving plans of God as they work out through the serving groups of egos who will come into physical incarnation under the influence of "divine duality" to carry forward the development of the lives which constitute the form through which divinity is seeking full expression. The relation of the fourth ray to the fourth kingdom in nature (which is the fourth Creative Hierarchy) is a predetermining influence in all world conflict up to date and is the cause which has produced the history [328] of war and conflict down the ages. The theme of that ray is "Harmony through Conflict" and it is the lower aspect of the ray energy, producing conflict which has hitherto controlled, and is climaxing now through the impetus of the new incoming Shamballa force. As it exhausts itself (and this is rapidly coming about) there will be a shift of direction and force to that major ray, the second Ray of Love-Wisdom, of which the fourth ray is an aspect. This second ray energy is very potently focussed through the constellation Gemini via the planet, Jupiter. We shall then have the inauguration of a long cycle of beneficent development in which the conflict essential to the interplay between the dualities will be stabilised upon the mental plane and—under the influence of the salvaging, serving egos of the fifth kingdom—entirely change world civilisation.

It is valuable also to remember that in the studying of the ray forces and their effects in Cancer, we must do so from the angle of the mass mind and the mass reaction and not from that of the individual. This is one of the signs of synthesis and of a relative fusion, but it is a fusion on the lower level of the spiral and connotes the fusion of the physical body and the soul but only in the embryonic stage and with the psychic stage still unindividualised. It is the stage of mass reaction to the incoming of the Sons of Light.

The entire theme of the zodiac can be approached from the angle of light and its unfolding and increasing radiance and of the gradual demonstration in what I have called elsewhere, "the glory of the One." The mode of the development of this inner light and of its externalisation must remain—from the standpoint of its cosmic effects—one of the secrets of initiation and this for a long time to come. It will, however, not be out of place if I were to give symbolically certain phrases and sentences which will indicate [329] (for each sign )this "growth of light in light," as it is esoterically called, bearing in mind that we are attempting to express conditions connected with the soul whose essential nature is light. This soul-light affects the form as evolution proceeds and produces sequentially the revelation of that form, and of the nature of space-time as well as of the goal.

1. Aries.—The Light of Life Itself. This is the dim point of light found at the centre of the cycle of manifestation, faint and flickering. It is the "searchlight of the Logos, seeking that which can be used" for divine expression.

2. Taurus.—The penetrating Light of the Path. This is a beam of light, streaming forth from the point in Aries, and revealing the area of light control.

3. Gemini.—The Light of Interplay. This is a line of light beams, revealing that which opposes or the basic duality of manifestation, the relationship of spirit and of form. It is the conscious light of that relationship.

4. Cancer.—The Light within the form. This is the diffused light of substance itself, the "dark light" of matter, referred to in The Secret Doctrine. It is the light awaiting the stimulation coming from the soul light.

5. Leo.—The Light of the Soul. A reflected point of light logoic, or divine. The light diffused in Cancer focusses and reveals eventually a point.

6. Virgo.—The blended dual Light. Two lights are seen—bright and strong, the light of form; one faint and dim, the light of God. This light is distinguished by a waxing of one and the waning of the other. It differs from the light in Gemini.

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7. Libra.—The Light that moves to rest. This is the light that oscillates until a point of balance is achieved. It is the light which is distinguished by a moving up and down.

8. Scorpio.—The Light of Day. This is the place where three lights meet—the light of form, the light of soul, and the light of life. They meet; they blend; they rise.

9. Sagittarius.—A beam of directed, focussed Light. In this the point of light becomes the beam, revealing a greater light ahead and illumining the way to the centre of the light.

10. Capricorn.—The Light of Initiation. This is the light which clears the way to the mountain top, and produces transfiguration, thus revealing the rising sun.

11. Aquarius.—The Light that shines on Earth, across the sea. This is the light which ever shines within the dark and cleansing with its healing rays that which must be purified until the dark has gone.

12. Pisces—The Light of the World. This is the light, revealing the light of life itself. It ends for ever the darkness of matter.

A study of the above thoughts will reveal the symbolic story of the irradiation of matter, of the growth of the light body within the macrocosm and the microcosm, and finally make clear the purpose of the Logos.

It is because—speaking in parables—the light of Cancer is only diffused, vague and inchoate that the influences of the first Ray of Focussed Intention and of purposeful Will and of the second Ray of Love-Wisdom (recognised duality and gained experience) are found to be missing. Their influences are not present, except in so far that love and purpose underlie all manifestation. But they are not focussed in this [331] sign. Only five rays play through this constellation which even at a relatively high point of development and upon the returning wheel preserves ever the mass relationship for the benefit of the incarnating individual and in order to guarantee the ultimate salvation of substance itself. Human beings, without initiated vision, are apt to interpret all the signs and their effects in terms of individual man, whereas the purpose of their coordinated influence is both planetary, solar and cosmic. The initiate who has taken the three lower initiations is occupied henceforth with the effects of the cosmic influences upon the planet and incidentally upon the fourth kingdom in nature and with the higher mental study of their effects as they produce basic and fundamental changes in the systemic life which, in its turn, affects our planet, its kingdoms in nature and incidentally human beings. You can see from this, therefore, that as the evolutionary changes are brought about and as human, planetary and solar consciousness progressively develops, the influences pouring from the constellations, via their intermediaries, the planets, will produce very diverse changes and significant happenings to which man will consciously or unconsciously respond according to his point of development. The response of the individual Cancer subject to the incoming influences and to his environment will be different to those of the disciple or initiate and these again will differ in every sign, thus rounding out human development. Here again is a point which astrologers will have later to take into consideration. I would here like to give you a tabulation which will indicate somewhat the nature of the response of the man during the three stages of his development—undeveloped, advanced and upon the Path—to the various influences to which he is subjected when he enters into physical plane existence through the open door of Cancer, and proceeds then through all the signs.