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SECTION ONE - TALKS TO DISCIPLES - Part 2

Make a most definite effort during these two days to step up your consciousness a little higher at each of the three spiritual points in each day: at the early morning meditation, at the noonday recollection, and at the sunset hour of contact. This means—if you follow instructions correctly—that you subject your subtle bodies to six equal points of spiritual stimulation and that you do it consciously. Then at some hour in the day of the full moon, but prior to the exact hour if that hour is not possible, follow the procedure outlined below:

1. Centre the consciousness in the head.

2. Imagine yourself as retreating even more consciously within towards that point of contact where personality-soul and the teacher in the world of souls can meet and become as one.

3. Then hold yourself as poised and steady as possible, preserving that detached poise as fully as may be during the following process which is carried forward silently by the creative activity of the imagination.

a. Imagine or visualise yourself as standing before a golden or ivory door.

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b. See that door slowly open, revealing a long low room with three windows—one looking east, one looking west and one looking north. Seated before the eastern window on a low carved chair (but looking towards you, and therefore sitting with his back to the window) you may visualise your Tibetan brother, in deep meditation, seeking to contact you and all for whom he is, as a teacher, responsible.

c. Then picture yourself as advancing slowly up the long room (which is his study and work room) and then standing before him. See also your group brothers standing with you. Then each of you can constitute himself, in imagination, as spokesman for his group and offer the group in service and deep consecration to the service of the Plan.

d. When you have accomplished this, imagine that you see me rising from my chair. Then as a group we face the East and say together the Great Invocation. Endeavour consciously to follow my lead as we say the words, and listen with care, using the imagination. This will involve intense concentration.

Do this until the time of the full moon of May, for it is a preparatory exercise in order to train you all in esoteric participation.

Make a careful analysis each month of your success or failure to carry out this discipline, and note with exactitude all reactions, results and phenomena. Success will depend upon your ability to achieve a strong mental reorientation and focus, to keep detached from brain activity, and yet at the same time to preserve the waking brain attentiveness. The resultant effects, reactions, and the registering of any realisation must be noted for the two days succeeding the time of the full moon, for the seeping through of information and knowledge is often a slow process, owing to the inadequate alignment of the bodies. The May full moon will inaugurate the first real united effort to synthesise subjectively [28] the present existing groups. This synthesis and corporate effort will become an annual endeavour as time goes on, and will take place regularly each Wesak Festival.

Of the original twenty-four members of the new (reorganised) seed group only eighteen now remain working on the physical plane. Two of them have passed into what we in Tibet call "the clear cold light"; they have gone over to the other side of the veil but are still actively cooperating with the group, and receiving the same instructions from me. I can, however, approach them more directly, as the limitations imposed by the physical brain no longer exist. P.D.W., though the latest to pass over, was held by the handicap of the astral body for an exceedingly brief time; he is now focussed and working in connection with my Ashram, upon the mental plane. C.D.P. is now in process of freeing herself from astral limitations, and by the time the sun moves northward she too will be working entirely mentally. They are both of them of real service to me at this time of world need, one owing to her understanding heart and utter selflessness, the other because of his outstanding wisdom.

Three of the original members (C.A.C., S.C.P., and W.O.I.) could not stand the spiritual pressure, and their personalities forced their withdrawal (probably for this incarnation) from the group work. The tests of discipleship are severe, as you well know, and only the pure heart, true love and mental activity can serve to pull the disciple through them; this is always possible, however, where these exist and where there is also a determined orientation towards the light. It is this determined orientation which has enabled W.D.S. to stand steady through his tests. There is a stage of discipleship which is described as that of "light fluctuation." The Stanzas for Disciples, which I have at times quoted to you, speak of this stage as follows:

"In and out of the light, as a moth around a candle, flicker the sparks. These sparks are men, awakened to the light, but men who know not that the greater Light puts out their little light and draws the sparks unto itself. They cannot face the light. They fear its utter truth. [29] They come; they go; again do they return, only again to leave."

Hold these brothers, who still remain your group brothers though temporarily in pralaya, warmly in your hearts. Hold them in love. Seek not to bring them aid or draw them back again within the circle of your service. They are at the point where their own souls alone and I, their Master, know the right timing of approach.

Finally, my brothers, one parting word as I close this instruction. The world tension increases and will increase; anxiety grows and there is no sign of its immediate lessening; the darkest hour of human life is upon us and it frequently brings to the earnest disciple the experience—terrible yet beautiful—to which has been given the name of the "dark night of the soul." This dark night takes different forms and different degrees of intensity, according to the ray, the type and the point in evolution of the disciple. From it you cannot escape. But one error emerges if careful thought is given to this dark night as pictured by the mystics down the ages. Their emphasis has, in the past, been laid upon the suffering which the personality experiences and the agony through which the personality goes. But in reality and from the angle of the facts, that is not the true dark night. The real "dark night" is that of the soul as it participates in the pain of humanity as a whole, in the agony of humanity's separation from God (a separation based upon illusion but not on actuality) and upon the desperation of humanity's reaching forth towards what appears to be an unresponsive God. Personality pain, agony and desperation are very different things and are not concerned with the totality of pain and suffering to which mankind is subjected.

I would therefore ask you to steel your souls to endurance, knowing that the Hierarchy Stands; I would ask you to love blindly and unchangingly in spite of all that may happen, knowing that Love Stands unmoved amid the wreckage of all around and eternally loves; I would ask you to put your hand into that of the Master and move forward with Him and in the strength of your group, irradiated by [30] the life and light of the Hierarchy; I would ask you to be a strong hand in the dark to your fellowmen because you are affiliated with the Hierarchy and the love and strength of the Hierarchy can flow through you, if you so permit.

I would remind you in this time of trial that I, your Master, love and guard you, for your soul and my soul are one soul. Be not unduly disturbed. There is no light or dark to the soul but only existence and love. Rest back on that. There is no separation but only identification with the heart of all love; the more you love the more love can reach out through you to others. The chains of love unite the world of men and the world of forms and they constitute the great chain of Hierarchy. The spiritual effort you are asked to make is that of developing yourself into a vibrant and powerful centre of that fundamental, universal Love.

September 1943

MY BROTHERS:

The New Seed Group has now been in existence for several years. During this time, I have only been in communication with you annually. Those who are in preparation for initiation must inevitably work alone. I would have you remember this. There are, as you know, three sources of inspiration which indicate to the disciple—struggling on the physical plane—his goal:

1. His own soul . . . . . . . .through direct contact, as the result of alignment.

2. The Master . . . . . . . . .through impression, as a result of sensitivity.

3. The Ashram group . . . through service, as a result of interplay.

Later, as the initiate-disciple makes progress and as he builds the antahkarana, the energy of the one Life, emanating from the Monad, brings in the fourth type of inspiration. To these spiritual sources of inspiration must be added lesser ones, such as mental impression, telepathically registered and coming [31] from a multitude of thinkers and minds. These work both as individuals and as members of a group. There is also emotional inspiration to which—in its most easily recognisable appearance—we give the name of aspiration. All these are, esoterically considered, evocative of desire, to be transmuted into will if (and only if) "the energy of the will-to-good is the emanating principle and the actuating result of the inspired impulse; it must constitute the motivating impulse at the centre of the disciple's being." Thus spoke one of the Masters not long ago to a disciple who sought to grasp the synthetic effect of inspiration. It is the Will and its immediate evocation which is the major need of this particular group of my disciples. The hierarchical Plan is the objective of that will; the purpose of Sanat Kumara is the revelation which comes to those who demonstrate that will, and it is the strength of the divine Power which makes that will possible. Strength is to Power what desire is to aspiration, or what the personality is to the soul. It is the revelation of quality.

I have started this communication with this note of Will because the use of that will (under instruction) is the objective of your next year's work; as we proceed with the various phases of our study which I have earlier outlined, my use of this theme will emerge clearly in your consciousness.

It has seemed to me necessary to open this instruction with a brief resume of the past teaching. The pressure of life these days is very great; everybody is tired; you will therefore approach this fresh addition to the teaching with renewed zest if the past teaching is clearly apprehended and is clearly illumined in your minds.

What is the task which confronts you, both as individuals and as a group? It is a fivefold task:

1. To confront and deal adequately with your own personal Dweller on the Threshold.

2. To share—as a group—in humanity's effort to confront the group Dweller on the Threshold; this "Dweller" is constructed of the evil desires of all mankind, of humanity's mistakes and weaknesses, thoughts, [32] distorted strengths and perverse motives. This confronting is one of the objectives of the present world war.

3. To arrive at that understanding which is the foundation of wisdom, which is the result of a developed intuition, and which is also an intelligent application of the truths apprehended.

4. To stand—as a group—before the Angel of the Presence.

5. To take initiation yourself, as an individual, and also as a coherent unit in the group effort towards initiation.

Other goals will emerge as you strive, study and serve; the simplicity, however, of the above statement will convey to you your immediate objectives. These objectives must be thought through together and their import must be grasped as a group. The contribution which each of you can make to the cause of clear thinking, ardent aspiration and determined application may sound easy and quite familiar. The moment, nevertheless, these goals become techniques and are expressed factually, their simplicity seems to vanish and the proposition appears extremely hard.

Since my last communication to you, certain changes have taken place in the personnel of the group. L.U.T. has been dropped (temporarily and for this particular incarnation) out of the group, and therefore out of my Ashram. The constant condition of irritation in which he lived was the result of the ceaseless conflict between his aspiring soul nature and his inert and essentially selfish personality; that is now over and for the rest of this life it can be assumed that he has reached his high water mark and is passing through a period—definitely temporary—of retrogression or of recession. Next life will see him pass triumphantly his present point of attainment, leaving him stabilised upon the Way. He remains, therefore, tenuously linked with the New Seed Group—a linking which is stronger upon the subjective side than upon the outer.

Three of your comrades in the earlier groups have rejoined [33] the group; the demand of their souls for reinstatement has been recognised by me and has evoked from me due response. Their linking with the group was not tenuous but was a strongly knit cable. H.S.D. has again taken her place among you, having learnt some measure of inner calm and mental poise. L.T.S-K., I felt, needed the protection of the group against his constantly recurring glamours and his innate glamour-making tendency; I, therefore, reinstated him for his own protection so that in a coming life he can start earlier, and move forward with greater precision. R.V.B., having learnt the lessons which an interlude of complete aloneness can give to the ardent disciple (who craves and rests back upon companionship) is now ready to prove what he essentially has ever been—a strength and a centre of poised peace to his group brothers. He is a definite asset in the group work and has reached a point in his unfoldment where it will not hurt him to know this.

So, my brothers, we face a new cycle of work and one in which C.D.P. and P.D.W.—working on the inner side of life—are definitely sharing. The latter has moved on into the Ashram of his Master, the Master Morya. He is now preoccupied with the work of breaking up—along with other trusted first ray disciples—the crystallisation which is the disastrous condition of France. His past incarnation in the French nation has well fitted him for this task; his heart of love and his very profound development will also enable him greatly to assist, thus offsetting the destructive tendencies of the first ray worker. He has never been destructive in his application of truth.

C.D.P. is working continuously with the children of the world (including those who died victims of the horrors of war), preserving inviolate her affiliation with my Ashram but working in a group composed of disciples upon all the rays and whose personalities—in their last incarnation—were upon all the many nationalities; they are doing what they can and must be done to salvage the consciousness of the children and to preserve them from complete disintegration.

K.E.S., who died prior to the reorganisation of the New Seed Group, is now subjectively affiliated with the group [34] and must be regarded by you as a fellow worker. His work is very largely with those who pass over to the inner side from the British and American Armed Forces; for this he is eminently well equipped, being English by birth but having spent long years in the United States; he has also worked for many years in the spiritualistic movement.

I am giving you information anent your group brothers who are not in physical bodies because I seek to have you realise the unity of all life, the identity of purpose and the close sense of relationship which characterises an Ashram. A Master's Ashram has people working both on the outer and on the inner planes and in this work, the Master sees no difference, being released from the concepts of time and space. This has relation to the "double life pattern of the disciple" to which I referred when I last communicated with you.

At that time, I gave you no explicit instruction or individual meditations. I gave each of you six statements upon which to ponder. Through the close consideration of these statements you can create fresh aspiration and a renewed tendency to creative living. Statements such as these are formulations of truth and are also voiced concepts of spiritual import. They are potent in their transforming effect, if rightly used. I have not been too satisfied with the results of my past requests to you. The pressure of life has been great these days; to that pressure many of you have succumbed. You might have carried through and been more effective had you given careful attention to your thought life.

One of the problems confronting disciples in times of world stress is that of the preservation of a right sense of proportion. This leads to right paralleling activity—the activity of the inner disciple and the work of the outer man. A perfect balance is the goal and this is not at all easy of achievement. In all times of world agony and catastrophe (such as we are at this time experiencing) a third and paralleling aspect of life appears and complicates the problem with which the disciple is faced and which he already regards as most difficult and challenging. There is (within the man) the inner disciple, oriented consciously towards the Hierarchy [35] and the life of the Kingdom of God; there is the busy outer man, preoccupied with various activities, playing the part of the intelligent citizen and seeking always to shoulder his share of national and group responsibility; there is also a suffering emotional human being, bewildered oft by world agony, reacting painfully to the sorrows and distresses of his fellowmen, horrified by the appalling psychological results of world war, by the psychological impacts and complexities, aghast at the present and overwhelmed by fear of the future. The greater his power to include, the greater his strain and pain; the further on he is upon the Way, the more keen are his reactions and the more he thinks and plans for the future, and the greater also the clarity with which he can view the imminent possibilities. I would not have it otherwise; this threefold position which inevitably you have to take and which you cannot avoid if you are true disciples, gives opportunity for planned integration and also proffers an invitation for you to shoulder an individual share of hierarchical responsibility and comprehension.

The only thing that I would ask is that you accept the implications of this triple situation and that you do not use it as an alibi; this, some of you have definitely done; you have regarded your complex problems as so strenuous and difficult that it makes your work in the group (which is a definite part of my Ashram) entirely out of the question. You have—many of you—not done the work which I requested; only a few—a very few—endeavoured to fulfil requirements. Had you managed to carry them out, you might have found your entire path in life more simple and easy and your service more effective.

Certain things anent the group aura, or rather anent its general characteristics, might prove of interest to you. A Master, when studying a group considers, first of all, the various lines of force which relate the individuals in the group to Him, to the inner Ashram and to each other. He looks for the constancy of the interplay, for the brilliance of the group light, as a whole, and for its emanatory influence, its radiation and its magnetic effect in the world. Changes constantly occur. In the past, the lines of force between the [36] group and myself were strong, and the relationship between the group members was definitely weak. Today, the lines of energy, carried by thought and directed towards me, are steady but not so brilliantly fluctuating; the lines between the group members are strengthened by mental determination, but not by emotional or embryonic love. This indicates, on the whole, improvement, because the tide of devotion, poured out to me was not something which guaranteed to me that the group had staying power. There is a more wholesome attitude. The relation between you as an individual and your co-disciples is one of a relative indifference, but of a mental recognition of your joint group affiliation. The magnetic radiation of the group is the weakest point in the entire presentation which you make to the world. As yet, from the angle of service, you do not count, for the group is doing nothing as a group. That is serious, my brothers. As individuals, many of you are serving in some way or another, but it is a detached and personal service and has no relation to a fused group endeavour.

You might here ask: What can we as a group accomplish? What is it that we can do? You can, for one thing, begin to work as an Ashram works, using the power of thought, originating pressures, directing thought currents along specified lines out into the world, creating thoughtforms which will make clear-cut contact with other minds and which will bring about definite changes in the consciousness of humanity. This you do not as yet do, nor have you evidenced any desire so to work. I have waited to see if the initiating impulse would come from you without any prompting by me. I have waited in vain.

I told you elsewhere that "an Ashram is an emanating source of hierarchical impression upon the world. Its `impulsive energies' and its inciting forces are directed towards the expansion of the human consciousness, through the magnetic lives of the group members as they carry on their duties, obligations and responsibilities in the outer world; it is aided also by the steady vibratory activity of the members of the Ashram who are not in physical incarnation and [37] by the united clear thinking and convinced awareness of the entire Ashram."

I have thus explained the need because you require clear understanding as we consider our first point, meditation, and begin to plan the work to be done by you during the coming year. Will you accept my words that you need a reorientation and a greatly lessened preoccupation with the Ashram, its Master, its personnel and its life? If you will do this, and thus mentally free yourselves, you can and will go on to a fuller life of service, with your eyes on human need and not upon your co-disciples, their activities, my plans and the purpose at this time of your preparation for initiation.

I would like now to try an experiment. Continue with your group work with me at the time of the full moon, exactly as outlined in your group instructions, but to that work I want to add another activity.

Each month I will speak three words, forming one consecutive sentence. Will you see if you can, in the silence of intensity, record these words? To help you in your task, I am giving a list from which I will choose each month a phrase. Send in what you think you registered each month on your full moon report. I will signify to A.A.B. the correctness, or otherwise, of your choice, by letting her know what I said.

This is the list from which I will choose:

1. Go in peace. 2. Faith, hope and charity.
3. God keep you. 4. God bless you.
5. Enter within thyself. 6. Love thy brother.
7. Stand in light. 8. Om Tat Sat.
9. Where art thou? 10. Tread the Path.
11. God guard thee. 12. Enter into peace.
13. Lift up thine eyes. 14. Speak low, brother.
15. Give love always. 16. The open gate.

The work to be done is now outlined and you enter upon a fresh period of study, of effort, and of training. May I, in order to stir you to fresh decisive living, remind you that:

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1. You are in training for initiation. Therefore, face the future with clearer vision.

2. You are pledged disciples, therefore take up your task and move forward.

3. You are members of the New Group of World Servers, and have therefore, no time to be idle.

4. You are not alone, but your group brothers stand with you, and I stand also by your side.

5. That there is no task which is insuperable, and no way that is too long for you to tread it. You are a soul with all the powers of the soul and—as you are linked with the Hierarchy—you are facing toward success.

As I earlier said, I at this time shall not deal with certain points connected with the growth of the human family and its stabilisation into a new civilisation. I shall begin to do so as soon as the war is over. When the needs of humanity are changed, and they will then be radically different to the conditions and demands prior to the war, then I will consider them. With the period of reconstruction, in which the New Group of World Servers will be active, we shall later deal in detail, and I will give two series of instructions which can act as a guide for all your reconstruction work. One instruction will be for my disciples, and through them for the New Group of World Servers, of which they are a part; another will be for the men and women of goodwill, and through them for the world of thinking men. However, I might state that the background or groundwork of all that you may be asked to do is the Triangle work. In the subjective work, the New Group of World Servers will be peculiarly active, creating the network of light; in the objective work, the men and women of goodwill will bestir themselves, creating the network of goodwill. The function of the New Group of World Servers is dynamically to "force" the energy of the will-to-good into the world; the average man and woman, responding unconsciously, will express goodwill. Disciples, such as you are, must perforce work in both fields, creating and building both types of network. This you can do now, and you can form thus the nucleus of that great interwoven [39] pattern of light and of goodwill which must underlie or "substand" all exoteric work of renovation, renewal, rehabilitation and reconstruction. I ask you and other disciples, therefore, again to work with renewed interest at the forming of triangles, reaching people who are already active, and seek to aid them in forming new triangles. This is a work of major importance and has the endorsement of the Hierarchy.

As regards our sixth subject, my personal instructions to each of you, you will find them as usual after this group instruction and after the teaching which I shall give you on the building of the antahkarana. [ii]* Your personal instructions are fuller this time and I would ask you to accept them as instructions to be followed. Constant reading and consciousness of instructions and teaching which are not carried through into action upon the outer plane, simply present a way of escape from reality. Unless a Master's instructions meet with an experimental response, they loosen the ashramic tie and eventually the disciple slips into an interlude (sometimes of great length and involving several lives) of drifting, of reading and thinking and not working, of the pleasure of attention without the pain of accomplishment. This has happened in the case of several who have been temporarily suspended from active work in my Ashram. See that it happens not to you.

May I remind you that your brothers' instructions may be interesting to you and should be read by you in an endeavour to understand him and work with him, but that they may convey to him a meaning which is not open to you at all and that, therefore, your conclusions may prove entirely erroneous. These personal instructions are, as you may realise, exoteric instructions within the field of esoteric relationships. They can be read and studied by all of you. However, I also deal with you in a purely esoteric and subjective manner, and this is a point upon which few of you, if any, ponder. Do you at any time register such teaching or recognise its source? You need to learn to make careful distinction between:

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1. Teaching which comes to you directly from your own soul, via your mind.

2. Instruction given by me to you in my inner Ashram, at which time you are also subjected to the stimulation of disciples senior to you.

3. Impression which comes to you from the great aggregate of all Ashrams, the Hierarchy.

Later I will give you some training on this matter, but you are not yet ready for it.

The final point, which concerns the externalising of the Ashrams, will be given to you when the Ashram of which you are a part is more real to you than it is at present.

I would have you remember that when the war ends two great conditions will emerge for which you must be prepared and for which you should now begin to prepare others. These are:

1. There will be a great settling back by mankind in an effort to find security, to obliterate the effects of war from their troubled minds, to forget that which has happened, to return to the familiar, and to re-establish the old ways of life. Human beings forget easily, and besides this ancient habit, humanity is very tired. Get ready to deal with this, for it must not happen if it can in any way be prevented.

2. There will also come the cessation of the "great sounds of the material aspects"—the sounds of war, the noise of explosion, and the cry of suffering humanity. This will create a curious false peace, but it will at the same time create a channel of approach for new spiritual forces and energies which—directed by the Hierarchy—will pour into the human family, causing spiritual stimulation, spiritual receptivity, spiritual aspiration and a great readiness for that which is new. You will therefore have two opposing conditions to consider, with which to deal, and you will need much wisdom. You will have to assist in the task of preventing the relapse of a tired humanity into the state of mind of [41] which inertia, a reverting to the old, and a demand for the ancient ways are characteristic. You will also have to aid in the directing of the registered spiritual energies into avenues and channels of usefulness where they can accomplish the greatest good. Ponder on this.

I have given you much in this instruction. I seek to make my Ashram useful at this time of crisis. We have had a great crisis of materialism and the powers of darkness have very nearly assumed control. But we are seeing the slow domination of the good. Humanity has been the battleground for a major conflict between the two great Lodges—the great White Lodge and the Black Lodge. The former is now gradually gaining control.

The withdrawal (quite imminent in time, my brothers) of the evil group will leave humanity relieved but bewildered, beaten to the ground, but with enough strength to rise to greater heights than ever before. For this withdrawal I ask you to prepare—with intelligence, wise understanding and deep love.

The work to be done by the world disciples, the world aspirants, the New Group of World Servers and the men and women of goodwill can be a determining factor in the New Age and can tip the scales between a static and retrogressive activity and a steadily planned moving forward into light. You can play your part in this determination, if you so will.

That you will do so, and that you will have the opened eye which will see the dawning light and the fading darkness is my earnest wish for you.

November 1944

TO MY GROUP OF AFFILIATED DISCIPLES:

It is more than a year since you received your last set of instructions from me—a year of momentous happenings upon earth and of significant changes in the hierarchical relation to humanity. There is, as a result of the war, a much closer rapport and spiritual confidence apparent between those pledged disciples who have been faithful to their assignments [42] and Those of Us Who are seeking to use them in the service of world betterment; there is a more definite recognition of emerging spiritual values among aspirants everywhere and a greater readiness to relinquish hindrances to service; the plans of the Christ for humanity's release are more matured for these had to wait until such time that the trend of human aspiration became more clearly emphatic; the new era, with its latent possibilities, can be seen upon the horizon, stripped of the veils of glamour and wishful thinking which obscured it ten years ago.

The significant spiritual effects of the war can now be clearly seen, and I can begin to consider with you (earlier than I had anticipated) some of the problems with which you—as potential servers of the race and pledged disciples—can now deal. I could wish, as far as the immediate present is concerned, that you were all younger and had availed yourselves more definitely of the teaching I have sought to give you these past years. Above everything else, I wish you were more courageous. Does that word surprise you, my brothers? In considering this year as a whole, I question not your devotion or your steadfastness; I have confidence in the depth of your aspiration and your desire for the will-to-good; I know that naught will turn you for any length of time from the pursuit of your goal.

I do, however, question your courage. It takes courage to make spiritual decisions and to abide by them; it takes courage to adjust your lives—daily and in all relations—to the need of the hour and to the service of mankind; it takes courage to demonstrate to those around you that the present world catastrophe is of more importance to you than the petty affairs of your individual lives and your humdrum contacts; it takes courage to discard the alibis which have prevented you from participating to date in the all-out effort which characterises today the activities of the Hierarchy; it takes courage to make sacrifices, to refuse time to nonessential activities and to deal with the physical body as if it were free from all impediments; it takes courage to ignore frailties which may be present, the tiredness incident to a long life, the physical tendencies which handicap and limit your [43] service, the sleeplessness which comes from world pressures or from a badly regulated life programme, and the nervousness and strain which are the common lot today; it takes courage to attack life on behalf of others, and to obliterate your own wishes in the emergency and need.

One of the points which disciples need to grasp more clearly is the well-recognised fact (and thus easily overlooked from very familiarity) that the assertion of one's determination to function as a server and as a disciple brings about a refocussing of all the forces of the personality and the soul (in unison); it is, symbolically speaking, a recurrence of the ancient event of individualisation upon a higher turn of the spiral, this time entered into with full conscious cooperation. This refocussing brings its own difficulties. It leads often to a distressing consciousness of one's own nature, one's aims, one's life theme, one's aspirations and one's handicaps, of one's equipment and experience, plus the various aspects and vehicles through which the soul has perforce to work. All this produces an intensification ofttimes of self-interest and of concentration upon one's self, always with the best of intentions and aspiration. One's limitations, physical or otherwise, look unduly large; one's faults are exaggerated in one's consciousness, though not so oft in expression; the extent of the service needed and demanded by the soul appears so great that the disciple at times refuses cooperation for fear of failure or from undue consciousness of himself; excuses for non-service or for only partial service are easily found and appropriated; postponement of all-out help today, plus complete dedication to human need, is easily condoned on the basis of health, time, home limitations, fear of one kind or another, age, or a belief that this life is preparatory to full service in the next; alibis are easy to discover, some of them even taking the form of believing that the demands of the Master and the programme of the Ashram with which the disciple is affiliated are unreasonable or—as is the case with two of you in this group—that the Oriental does not understand the demands upon the Occidental disciple.

I have for years endeavoured to arouse all of you, and through you the thousands you can as a group reach, to the [44] urgency of the times, but hitherto with only partial or temporary results and as yet (for some of you, though not for all) the work to be done in response to the demands of the Ashram is secondary to your daily life pattern, to the requirements of your business or your home or to what you believe to be the physical limitations, the emotional liabilities and the mental handicaps of your equipment.

My brothers, let me repeat: The disciple has to take himself as he is at any given time, with any given equipment, and under any given circumstances; then he proceeds to subordinate himself, his affairs and his time to the need of the hour, particularly during a phase of group, national or world crisis. When he does this within his own consciousness, and is therefore thinking along lines of the true values, he will discover that his own private affairs are taken care of, his capacities are increased and his limitations are forgotten.

Until this is your experience, a closer relation to my Ashram will not be possible because the heavy and lethargic quality of your group life would entail undue effort on the part of the other disciples in the Ashram (and particularly in the inner Ashram) in order to offset it. I am putting this to you with frankness as we together face the end of the war, and a period of renewed and different opportunity opens before all world servers. It is for you to decide whether your contribution during the war period measured up to your opportunity; it is for you to decide what part you will play, as individuals and as a group, in the coming cycle—a cycle wherein the new ideas and ideals must be stressed, and for which a fight must be made, wherein the wider plans must be understood, endorsed and preached, the new and clearer vision for human living must be grasped and finally brought into being, and a cycle wherein the effort of all members of the New Group of World Servers (and surely you are that!) must be given to the lifting of humanity's heavy load.

No definite assignments were given in the last instruction, as I felt I would like to see whether the rhythm of the past—reporting on the meditation work and on the Full Moon Approach which has been carried on now for many years—was so strongly established that, for the sake of the [45] group, it would be carried on, even if not specifically demanded. Only a few have kept the group meditation; the work of interpreting the Formula, as outlined earlier and not specifically discontinued by me, has received no attention, and the group is the loser thereby. I point out these factors because I would have you realise that this is group work, and that it is the group which is the teacher of the group, under inspiration from me, when you—as individuals—reach me, and under the inspiration of your own souls and of the Spiritual Triad when these contacts are made and utilised.

In my previous instruction I stressed three points to which I would like again to refer in the light of the emerging opportunity. My task is not to change you or to give you orders and commands. I have only one task, and that is to find and test out those who can serve the race under inspiration from the Ashrams of the Masters. I referred at that time to the loneliness which is one of the first things that indicates to a disciple that he is being prepared for initiation. It will be apparent, therefore, that the loneliness to which I refer is not that which is incident to those weaknesses of character which repel one's fellowmen, to an aloof or disagreeable nature, or to any form of self-interest which is so emphasised that it antagonises other people. There is much loneliness in a disciple's life which is entirely his own fault and which is subject to cure if he employs the right measure of self-discipline. With these he must deal himself, for they concern the personality, and with your personalities I have no affair. I refer to the loneliness which comes when the accepting disciple becomes the pledged disciple and steps out of a life of physical plane concentration, and of identification with the forms of existence in the three worlds, and finds himself in the midway place, between the world of outer affairs and the inner world of meaning. His first reaction then is that he is alone; he has broken with the past; he is hopeful but not sure of the future; the tangible world to which he is accustomed must, he knows, be superseded by the intangible world of values, involving a new sense of proportion, a new range of values and new responsibilities. This world he believes [46] exists, and he steps forward bravely and theoretically, but it remains for a while wholly intangible; he finds few who think and feel as he does and the mechanism of sure contact only exists within him in embryo. He is breaking loose from the mass consciousness with which he has been merged hitherto, but has not yet found his group, into which he will eventually be consciously absorbed. Therefore, he is lonely and feels deserted and bereft. Some of you feel this loneliness; few of you have, for instance, reached the point where you feel yourselves to be a definite, integral part of the group; only two or three of you realise—briefly and fleetingly at times—the close link with the Ashram; your attitude is largely one of hope, coupled with the idea that it is your physical limitations which prevent your realising all that truly is, in connection with your inner affiliations. But, my brothers, such a sense of loneliness is only another form of self-consciousness, of undue self-interest, and (as you make progress upon the Path) you will find it disappearing. If you therefore feel lonely, you must learn to look upon it as a glamour or illusion and as a limitation which must be overcome. You must begin to act as if it were not. If only more disciples would learn the value of acting "as if." There is no time for any of you to be lonely these days, for there is no time for you to think about yourselves.

The second point I made was the need for you to emphasise and develop the Will. Presumably, you have all been working at the task of building the antahkarana, the channel of communication between the brain and the spiritual will, or the Monad, working through the medium of the Spiritual Triad. If you have been successful, it will be beginning to dawn upon you that there is a great distinction between goodwill which the masses can and often do grasp, and the will-to-good which is the goal of the disciple. Goodwill is relatively simple of expression and all of you know much about it and express much of it. For that, no commendation is required, for it is a human attribute lying very near the surface of expression in all men. But the will-to-good is far more difficult to express, for it involves the ability not only to use the spiritual will, but to know somewhat the nature of [47] the "good." The will-to-good is the basic quality of divine purpose, involving planned activity and a definite goal to be achieved. It necessitates the ability to think in terms of the whole, an appreciation of the next step which humanity must take in the imminent Great Approach (for this must be a reciprocal Approach), an understanding of the lessons of the past and a vision, based—not on love or on soul-sight—but on a conviction as to the immediate purpose of Sanat Kumara, as He works it out through the Christ and the planetary Hierarchy. This conviction is based, as far as the Hierarchy is concerned, on pure reason; it is based, as far as humanity is concerned, through its disciples, on intuitive perception, implemented by love and expressed intelligently. Upon this I would ask you to ponder, and as you ponder, make the needed changes in your personal approach to the problem.

The third point grows out of the above. You are all pledged disciples, and as such your immediate personal problem (in which I may not and therefore cannot help you) is to overcome and destroy the hold which the Dweller on the Threshold may have upon you. We are back, therefore, to our starting point, and a question now arises in your minds: "How can I overcome this Dweller and yet at the same time refuse to concentrate upon myself and my problems? This I am told by you not to do, and yet the Dweller is the sum total of all personality holds and defects, all potencies—emotional, mental and physical—which limit my expression as a soul. What can I therefore do?"

My answer would be: You must first of all accept the fact of the Dweller, and then relegate that Dweller to its rightful place as part of the Great Illusion, the great phantasmagoria of existence and as an integral part of the life of the three worlds. You must then proceed upon your planned life service (What definite plan or plans have you, my brother?) and act as if the Dweller existed not, thus freeing yourself from all personality influence in due time and leaving your mind free for the task in hand. I could perhaps word it another way. When your interest in hierarchical work and the programme of the Ashram with which you are [48] connected is adequately strong, it will then dominate all your actions, and all your thoughts (waking or sleeping); you will then find that the grip of the Dweller will be broken, that its life has been destroyed by the force of attrition and its form destroyed in the fires of sacrifice. Such, briefly, is the story; I waste no time with elaborations, for there is much I seek to give you in this instruction.

I desire to give you the help you need for the coming year which faces you. Above all, however, I am endeavouring to make clear to future generations certain basic principles and certain aspects of hierarchical truth which must in the New Age govern those who seek to tread the Path of Discipleship and who are willing to be prepared for initiation. Changes in curriculum and in techniques are being made by the Hierarchy; the adaptation of old methods to modern needs and to more highly developed men is under way. I write not for you in reality. You have already had more than you have used. I write for the coming disciples and initiates of the next two generations.

It is essential that disciples in all Ashrams consider these days what humanity's problems are, what they mean and what their solution entails; they must know what the Masters of the Wisdom want done and then they must talk and write, act and live so that others too may understand.

Humanity has never really lived up to the teaching given to it. Spiritual impression, whether conveyed by the Christ, by Krishna or by Buddha (and passed on to the masses by Their disciples) has not yet been expressed as it was hoped. Men do not live up to what they already know; they fail to make practical their information; they short-circuit the light; they do not discipline themselves; greedy desire and unlawful ambition control and not the inner knowledge. To put it scientifically and from the esoteric angle: Spiritual impression has been interrupted and there has been interference with the divine circulatory flow. It is the task of the disciples of the world to restore this flow and to stop this interference. This is the major problem facing the Ashrams at this time.

This year, I will make clear to you what work is asked of the group in relation to the planned group work, the group [49] meditation and the group thinking; the rules then laid down will hold good for all future years, though their fulfilment is necessarily optional, as you are free disciples, working under the new rules, and are adult aspirants.

Your full moon work remains unchanged and I will again send a phrase chosen out of the set of phrases already given. I will change my technique somewhat and in speaking the phrase each month at our full moon contact, I will do it the day before, on the day of the full moon, and on the following day, and will also lay the emphasis upon the leading word in the phrases. If this leading word is recorded by you, the effort can be regarded as successful.