Prepare men for the reappearance of the Christ. This is your first and greatest duty. The most important part of that work is teaching men—on a large scale—to use the Invocation so that it becomes a world prayer and focusses the invocative demand of humanity (The Externalisation of the Hierarchy, p. 641).
“The rendering of "seven ancient word-forms" into modern language was the supreme achievement of Alice A. Bailey and the Tibetan, Djwhal Khul’s 30 years of work together. Since it was first received in 1945 the Great Invocation has been sounded throughout the world and translated into over 70 languages and dialects. As a result of its worldwide use over the years, the energies invoked by the Great Invocation can now be said to be deeply anchored in human consciousness.
The Great Invocation was always intended by the Tibetan, Djwhal Khul, to be given mass distribution and to become a world prayer. In an increasingly pluralistic and multicultural world, the need is to continue to make the Great Invocation accessible to as many people as possible. Language is a living, changing means of expression, in keeping with changes in human consciousness. Therefore, the international Board of Trustees of the Lucis Trust concluded that the mass distribution of the Great Invocation—which is intended to be Christ’s own mantram for the Aquarian age—must be allowed to accommodate slight modifications of language without changing its meaning. The aim is to enable larger numbers of people to work with the Great Invocation in a slightly adapted form, and to nurture the transformation of consciousness so necessary in this period of planetary crisis.
We believe that the original wording of the GI, as it was given in English, is not only unassailably inclusive to those who truly understand its meaning, but that the careful choice of words and mantric cadence contains great spiritual teaching in and of itself. However, we also recognise that the tremendous changes which have taken place since the Great Invocation was first given out and which are leading to greater recognition of women’s contribution to society and to a growing appreciation for the traditions of the world’s faiths, especially those of the East such as Buddhism and Hinduism, have created a mental climate in which even the appearance of exclusivity, narrowness of doctrine, or bias is intolerable. This period of preparation for the externalisation of the Hierarchy and the reappearance of the Christ, the World Teacher, is one in which the worldwide appeal generated by the Great Invocation is our most important means of cooperation. We therefore believe that any lingering barriers of resistance to the wording of the Great Invocation must not be allowed to stand in the way of its widespread use and distribution.
We also realise that the Invocation is built upon "seven ancient word-forms" and that the Tibetan himself seemed to encourage the slight adaptation of certain terms when introducing the Great Invocation to specific groups. There have always been objections to the wording of the Great Invocation, which is probably understandable given its great potency as a mantram; however, two words in particular—"men" and "Christ"—have evoked greater misunderstanding than the rest. The word "man" comes from Sanskrit and means "one who thinks", but in the modern mind this word is viewed as sexist and exclusive. "Christ", unfortunately, too often is viewed as the sole province of Christianity and not relevant to people of other religions or of no particular religion. These two points we think can be modified, if deemed necessary, without compromising the unparalleled spiritual value of the Great Invocation in the version which follows.
From the point of Light within the Mind of God
Let light stream forth into human minds.
Let Light descend on Earth.
From the point of Love within the Heart of God
Let love stream forth into human hearts.
May the Coming One return to Earth.
From the centre where the Will of God is known
Let purpose guide all little human wills—
The purpose which the Masters know and serve.
From the centre which we call the human race
Let the Plan of Love and Light work out
And may it seal the door where evil dwells.
Let Light, and Love, and Power restore the Plan on Earth.
This slightly adapted version is now available as a card suitable for personal use and public distribution by co-workers, and is also available as a poster suitable for display for World Invocation Day.
We will continue to work with the original Great Invocation in our meetings and conferences, and we know that many co-workers will too. However our hope is that, whether one works with the original version or the adapted wording given above, its use will contribute to the transformation of consciousness that will enable one to penetrate beyond the words to the true meaning and significance of this great world prayer.