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SECTION THREE - TEACHINGS ON INITIATION - Part 6

It is for this reason that disciples in an Ashram are of no political persuasion and own to no nationalistic bias. This is not an easy thing for them to achieve at once, but the group consciousness gradually assumes control, and with it the disciple's ability to think and work with the group in terms of the Plan. He grasps eventually that in relation to humanity, the planning of the Hierarchy falls into certain definite phases of activity—all of them related and all of them tending towards the externalisation of the Plan in any particular century, cycle or world period. These phases are:

1. The phase of Purpose, originating in Shamballa and registered by the senior Members of the Hierarchy.

2. The stage of hierarchical Planning. This is the formulation of the Purpose in terms of possibility, immediacy, appropriateness and the availability of the disciples, plus the energies to implement the Plan.

3. Next comes Programme, wherein the Plan is taken up by the particular ashram involved in its implementation and is then reduced to the formative stages of human impression and direction, the conditions necessary to bring about its emergence, and the two phases of this conditioning. These are usually in two parts; i.e., the destruction of all hindrances and the presentation of the Plan.

4. The emergence of the hierarchical Pattern (based upon the recognition of purpose, careful planning and a detailed and carefully thought-out programme), both in the minds of the disciples in the Ashram who are involved in the implementation of the Plan, and among the intelligentsia on Earth. These two groups have the task—the first group consciously and the other unconsciously—of bringing the pattern of things to be into the mass consciousness, by no means an easy task, as the present state of world affairs demonstrates.

5. Then comes the final phase of Precipitation, when all the subjective work has been done on the basis of possibility, and when the pattern and a part of the programme are recognised by the world thinkers in every nation, either [362] favourably or with antagonism. The planning, having reached this final stage, then proceeds under its own momentum.

These are some of the ideas which lie behind the particular hint which I have given to you, as far as the disciple is concerned. According to his development and his point in evolution, so will be his emphasis; some disciples can aid the Master in the planning process because they are becoming sensitive to impression by Shamballa; others are engrossed in the formulation of the programme and in imparting some of its features to more limited disciples, thus setting them to work. A group of carefully chosen disciples are always held in the Hierarchy to work solely with the pattern; this is a most important phase of the work, requiring a spirit of synthesis and an ability to hold streams of hierarchical energy under control. Disciples who are not so advanced, and who are therefore closer to human thinking at the particular moment in history, undertake to supervise the precipitation of the Plan. Their work is necessarily far more exoteric, but is most responsible, because it is when the Plan has reached the stage of human implementation that error is apt to arise and mistakes can occur.

In every ashram are to be found those disciples whose task it is to make the needed readjustments of the pattern and the demanded changes in the programme as the process of precipitation goes forward. It is a law that human freedom may not be infringed. The staging of the Plan and its working out is, in the last analysis, an entirely human affair, once it has reached the stage of precipitation. It is dependent upon the responsiveness of human brains, and their recognition of need and its sources. This is a point which should be remembered.

The above short explanation of the implications of a hint, and particularly of Hint Two should show you how rich is the area or the atmosphere of a hint—if I may use such peculiar phrasing; it will show you also how hints are largely concerned with ashramic duty.

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THE FORMULAS

All that I have done hitherto in connection with the presented formulas has been to give you five of them and to indicate the nature of the sixth, which is not to be given. It is all that I can at this time do. I would, however, like to summarise here what I have already given, because of the major importance of the theme.

I gave you certain definitions of a formula which it is necessary to repeat. They are not many, but they indicate a phase of hierarchical working and of training in a certain definite esoteric technique which is essential for every worker in an Ashram to grasp. This, therefore, concerns you.

I also covered their description and significance in two ways: the first concerned their application to the disciple and to his ashramic life and service, and the second had reference to the more universal and general meaning. We can therefore sum up what has been given in a threefold manner and provide a closely integrated yet widely useful approach to these fundamental formulas. I am thus provided with the background of what I feel the need of saying to you on these formulas:

I. The Formulas Defined.

1. They are second ray presentations of soul ideas. Essentially, they are geometrical forms, lying behind all exoteric manifestations; even when presented as words or phrases they are susceptible of being reduced to definite forms. They are building patterns.

2. They express significance and intention. To the disciple and the initiate who employs them correctly and with understanding, they indicate energy direction as a definite part of the creative work which emanates constantly from the world of souls, from the Kingdom of God and from the Hierarchy. They are rightly oriented energy patterns.

3. They are related to the world of meaning and are the esoteric symbols to be found behind all exoteric [364] forms. They veil that which is in process of being revealed. They are revealing patterns.

4. They contain or veil the six prerequisites for initiation, and are therefore six in number. They indicate the six relationships or the six intermediate stages of consciousness to be found between initiations. They have unique reference to the pattern of the initiate-consciousness.

5. They are definitely formulas of integration, both universal and individual. They present certain great creative patterns connected with the integration of lesser forms into a greater whole.

6. They are related to the entire process of death. Death—from the angle of the formulas—is the integration of the essential being in all forms with the pattern which produced its exoteric manifestation. They concern the discovery of the pattern.

II. The Formulas from the angle of Discipleship.

Formula 1 . . . Concerns integration into the Ashram; it concerns the "revelation of group feeling." It is related to sensitivity and conditions the life of the Ashram.

Formula 2 . . . Concerns alignment in the three worlds with the soul. It is related primarily to the higher alignment between the Personality and the Spiritual Triad, via the antahkarana. It conditions the whole spiritual man.

Formula 3 . . . Concerns the soul and the egoic lotus. It is related to the transfer of soul energy into the antahkarana, producing conscious awareness of time and space in terms of the Eternal Now. Right interpretation of this formula gives insight into the past and into the Law of Cause and Effect; it also gives intelligent appreciation of present opportunity as well as an intuitive perception of [365] the future possibilities which confront the Hierarchy.

Formula 4 . . . Concerns dynamic energy and is the basis of the true Laya-Yoga; this yoga deals ever with the point within the circle and its relation to other points which condition the evolutionary process.

Formula 5 . . . Concerns the Will and is related to divine purpose. It conditions the establishing of all correct relationships.

Formula 6 . . . Concerns the processes of death which have a most definite effect upon already established relationships. It concerns life-transference and has relation to the presentation of opportunity.

III. The Formulas from the universal creative Aspect.

Formula 1 . . . The transition from darkness to Light. Creation in the Light.

Formula 2 . . . Transition from the unreal to the Real. The nature of reality. Creation in time and space as understood in the three worlds.

Formula 3 . . . Transition from death to Immortality. The nature of Life. The creative process and life energy.

Formula 4 . . . Transition from chaos to ordered Beauty. Relation of the world of effects and the world of meaning. Then relation to the world of causes. The nature of karma. Progressive evolutionary creation.

Formula 5 . . . Transition from the individual consciousness to the universal. Evolutionary processes from divine Purpose into plan and then into manifestation. The nature of individual renunciation. The one Life.

Formula 6 . . . Transition from cyclic living into life itself. The Purpose of cycles. Control of time-space consciousness.

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Two major ideas emerge from a careful study of these three tabulations: Pattern and Transition. It is upon these two that I would ask you to reflect constantly. In past years, I have frequently called your attention to the necessity of a vital and active programme, formulated by you and self-initiated by you, and therefore, in these tabulations, you have much that can throw light upon that necessity and upon the lines along which the programme should go; you must remember ever that the programme of a disciple and of an ordinary aspirant are not in any way identical.

Programme will—if followed with spiritual exactitude—reveal your soul-intended life pattern and this will be an expression of a life purpose. This summation of a disciple's life is also the summation of the life of the Lord of the World, Whose self-initiated programme, implemented by evolutionary energy and steadily revealing the "pattern of things to come" is increasingly known as an expression of the divine initial purpose.

The section upon formulas is perhaps the most exacting in the series of instructions I am now giving you, for it involves creative thinking, intuitive insight, and the use of the spiritual will; these three activities are relatively new to the aspirant and present as yet great difficulties. These you will have to think out for yourselves, and thus acquire the training which will enable you to see life in the process of producing great formulas of living which, in their turn, will produce the essential creative patterns.

There is nothing more that I need to say on this subject. Later teaching on the matter will be available next century. I have already given you more than you can understand, but not more than you can begin slowly to study and eventually to comprehend by direct programme-forming in your own life, and making it at the same time an essential part of the programme of the Ashram with which you find yourself affiliated. This you will have to do through self-devised formulas, thus producing a life-pattern which will be indicative to the watching Masters as to the point in evolution attained by the disciples.

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POINTS OF REVELATION

It might here be noted by you, as we consider this entire subject of revelation from the angle of the initiate, that (in the initiatory process where the disciple is concerned) revelation is simply one way of expressing the constantly recurring effects of pressure forward and of vision. Throughout the entire evolutionary process there is essentially nothing but a growing revelation. The two terms, Evolution and Revelation, go together. Any distinction lies within the field of revelation or—to word it otherwise—within the various planes of consciousness, and particularly that in which the revelation is taking place. Earlier I said that "the next sequential revelation will be that of creativity, of the world of thoughtforms which humanity as a whole has created and the setting in motion—by humanity and in relation to its own destiny—of the Law of Cause and Effect or Karma. This will take us back into the very night of time and demonstrate the hope of the present era."

Revelation is both formless and also within form, and the closer to realisation, the more subtle and devoid of form will be the revelation. This is, of course, a platitude of which you are well aware but it needs renewed recognition. Again, there is necessarily, in revelation, always the concept of Light and that which it reveals. Light on the physical plane produces the organ of vision, the eye through which revelation of physical areas of consciousness becomes possible; the same theme of light runs through the analogous process by means of synchronising instruments upon all planes; nevertheless the physical concept of instrument falls increasingly into the background, and other words take its place as we deal with higher areas of consciousness: Recognising Perception. Interpreting Perception. Spiritual Perception. Decisive Perception. These terms will suffice to convey to the disciple the nature of the recognitions which he renders to the revelation that unfolds before him, once he is an initiate within the Ashram and is changing his apparatus of perception from the tangible one of the three worlds (tangible because [368] within the world of forms) to the higher correspondences which he must use in the future.

It is at the sixth Initiation of Decision that Perception and Recognition of the revelation reach their heights for the initiate. After this, the subtler correspondences to the tangible senses of taste and smell begin definitely to demonstrate, but with them we shall not deal, for they are effects of revelation so far removed from the possible achievement of the majority of the Masters that they concern us not; they are more properly related to the unfolding consciousness of Those Who function in the Council Chamber of Shamballa. Human evolution or the human evolutionary process is entirely concentrated around the sense of sight, with its consequent effects and results of vision, recognition and perception—all of them constituting what we mean when we speak of revelation.

This revelation can be—as I said—either in form or formless; it can be a pictorial symbol or a subtle demonstration; it can be expressed only in words, or it can take the form of wordless recognition; it can be a goal or a future sensed possibility, but it can also be an incentive and the dynamic impulse of the initiate's life because it is not distant but is a real aspect of his divine equipment—I know not how else to express these possibilities to you, my brothers. It is with these aspects of revelation that we are here dealing, because they are strictly aspirational developments and are available as a result of ashramic training and of hierarchical initiation.

I would remind you that in all that I am giving you in this series of instructions I am dealing with hierarchical initiations and not with those advanced stages of unfoldment which are referred to when the subject of the Christ arises or of those times when He is spoken of as the Teacher of the Angels. Let us keep our thinking and its resultant aspiration in the realm of human possibilities. I would have you note the distinction that can be made between the aspiration which precedes thought and which presupposes an emotional orientation to light and revelation, and that which is the consequence of thought and which is the seed of an oriented perception [369] of that which lies permanently within the consciousness of the Hierarchy.

As we consider these revelations, I would like to take them up with you from a somewhat new angle; I would ask you to remember that the concept of Light must always be established by you mentally, alongside that of the revelation itself. I would ask you also to remember that I am dealing with revelations which are no longer true revelations, because they have been formulated by the initiates of today and made visible in words. Revelation is therefore, as far as you are concerned, of two kinds:

1. Those that have been recognised and perceived in the past and (consequently) have been "reduced to words"—using the phrase in its occult and limiting significance.

2. Those that are as yet unrevealed to any except those who have taken the fourth initiation. The three points of revelation (indicated by me) can usefully be related by you to the first three initiations, though they necessarily have an interpretation appropriate to all the initiations.

Let me express for you here—in their briefest form—the four points of Revelation already indicated, and then "in the Light" let us consider them as suggested earlier.

1. Energy follows thought and the eye directs the energy.

Involves the physical plane.

Relates to the first initiation.

Concerns the ajna centre and the so-called third eye.

2. The will is an expression of the Law of Sacrifice.

Involves the astral plane.

Relates to the second initiation.

Concerns the heart centre, the "advancing point of Light."

3. The Monad is to the planetary Logos what the third eye is to man.

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Involves the mental plane.

Relates to the third initiation.

Concerns the head centre, the light of Purpose.

4. Purpose itself is only an energy, released within the confines of the Council Chamber. There it must take shape.

Involves the buddhic or intuitional plane.

Relates to the fourth initiation.

Concerns the throat centre. Light upon the Path.

There follows next the fifth revelation, which is as follows:

5. When the light of the seven Rays is blended with that of the seventh Ray, then light supernal can be known.

Involves the atmic plane.

Relates to the fifth and sixth initiations.

Concerns the alta major centre. Extra-planetary light.

You will see therefore, brother of mine, how very abstruse these apparently simple statements anent revelation can be. As I have formulated them above, they indicate the revelation in its primary and initiatory individual recognition; the meaning is, however, far greater than appears, and is in reality related to the unfolding purpose of the planetary Logos, involving the planetary Council. All that I have here given you in connection with the seven centres (if brought into relation with all that I have given you in A Treatise on Cosmic Fire) will afford you some general idea of the various planetary significances. This I have personally no time to do, even if it were desirable, but it will be obvious that what I have indicated along the line of correspondences must be true, for the ancient truism "as above, so below" holds eternally good, and it is the task of the Hierarchy to demonstrate this. The relation of the microcosm to the macrocosm can never be broken, and that relationship is deeply involved in these five points of revelation.

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It has been occultly stated that:

"The five points of the five-pointed star are pyramids of ascension and, at the summit of each point—hidden within the emanating rays—lies a point of revelation, offsetting the radiation but preserving the deeply seated magnetism. Thus is there symbolised the going forth, the coming back and the point of peace, surrounded by activity."

I will endeavour (as we consider these points of revelation) to express as far as may be this relationship of the smaller to the great, of the part to the whole, and of the five points of spiritual contact upon the physical plane (outlets for the energy generated in the planetary centres) with the sum total of the means of expression. These centres are brought into expression—as far as the points of revelation are concerned—at their respective initiations:

1. The ajna centre.

2. The heart centre.

3. The head centre.

4. The throat centre.

5. The alta major centre.

I say not that these five exits for planetary energy are the planetary centres, for they are not; I say that they are the points through which the energy of a planetary centre is directed in the service of humanity at this particular time. The centres of the planetary Logos are necessarily directed in their inflow and outflow from Shamballa; they are expressions of the Purpose underlying the creative evolutionary process. The five corresponding exits are those which, in this cycle, disperse the energy—generated by the Hierarchy, under the inspiration of the divine Purpose and directed towards the carrying out of the Plan.

It is wise to remember that the Plan is as much of the divine Purpose as can be brought into expression upon the planet—under the Law of Evolution and the tension of this [372] planetary crisis through which we are passing at this time—or at any one time or particular epoch in time and space. Let us now consider these points of revelation so as to gain from them some real understanding:

The First Point of Revelation: Energy follows thought and the eye directs the energy.

We are not dealing here with the simple statement that thought power is an energy and that the process of thinking generates automatically an energy which produces objective forms, induces related action, and is the source therefore of all that appears or manifests. That is a platitude today, and humanity is increasingly aware of the subjective power of thought and of its consequences—objective realisation. We are to concern ourselves with that which lies behind the mental perception of the ordinary man and with the revelation which comes to the initiate disciple as he stands within the ashram and perceives—as a result of the initiatory process—the nature of the divine Plan, as it can be seen working out on various planes of our planetary existence. There are three things which the initiate notes as the new panorama unfolds in flashing light before him:

1. The point of tension which precedes revelation. There is much to be considered in relation to tension as the forerunner of initiation and its subsequent revelation.

2. The stillness by which the revealing vision is surrounded, if I may so inadequately express the idea. The revelation is given to the initiate as if there was nothing in all the world but himself (a point of tension) and a vortex of force which takes form before his eyes, revealing to him an inevitable but future activity.

3. The level upon which the revelation (apprehended at the highest possible point of consciousness for the initiate) must eventually be materialised or brought into being.

Initiation is always taken on levels of consciousness higher [373] than the mental, and the initiate must not only realise the significance of the revelation but must also know the sphere of activity of which it will be the inspiration. I would have you ponder on the wording of this last sentence.

Each of the five points of revelation indicates to the initiate: procedure, location and objective. Each is therefore susceptible of many and varied interpretations; these are dependent upon the initiatory status of the disciple. With these we cannot deal, because it would entail the writing of another complete treatise and this would also be largely incomprehensible to the uninitiated reader. I can, however, give you some ideas anent the five points of revelation which I have indicated, leaving your intuition to wrestle with their import—or leaving it to your imagination if the intuition is not yet creatively active; it must always be remembered that the imagination is the seed of the intuition, because that which is not existent somewhere within our apparently complex planetary system cannot be imagined.

In connection with the aphorism that energy follows thought, I would have you relate this concept to the Science of Impression, bearing ever in mind that the Masters of the Wisdom work in three ways as They endeavour to implement the divine Plan:

1. They formulate, deliberately and in line with Their fixed intention, those thoughtforms which must be "impressed" upon the substance of the level of consciousness desired.

2. These living forms of thought are then occultly energised and become centres of energy or reservoirs of energy, with the original thoughtform as the creative source at the centre. These thoughtforms and this generated energy are held steady within the aura of the Master or of a group of Masters.

3. The energy is then projected on to a particular plane or into the mind consciousness of those disciples who are en rapport with the Master, or of those groups of disciples or aspirants who are working in close association with some hierarchical group. If I say to you that the initiated disciple uses the ajna centre, I am only stating a partial [374] truth; many of the Masters work through no physical or etheric mechanism whatsoever, but utilise what might be termed "a point of projection" within the ashram; this is a point of sevenfold contact, available at all times for the use of all those initiates who have taken the third initiation. They work consequently from that high place within the Hierarchy and do not need to employ the ajna centre or any other centre within the etheric body. Writing as I am, for disciples and initiates who have not yet taken the third initiation and who are still "confined" within physical vehicles, the information that the "eye directs the energy" is sure and far more easily understood.

From the angle of our studies, the revelation accorded to the initiate relates to the carrying forward of the divine Plan upon the physical plane and to the implementation of the will of Shamballa, through the medium of disciples and aspirants and of advanced humanity, working—consciously or unconsciously—in our modern world.

Down upon the level of daily living, disciples are today learning three things: the Technique of Impression, the generating of energy, and the use of the ajna centre. Many are responsive to impression, but fail to recognise or use the energy of which the impression is simply the forerunner; others respond to the energy, but fail to register the Plan which it is intended to implement, and the energy then leads to great but fruitless activity. Still others are learning to use the centre between the eyebrows, standing as silent and poised recipients controlling the third eye, the directing agent of the received energy. It must be carefully borne in mind that the energy to be used is not the energy which the disciple himself generates or his own life force, but is something different, something which he has received from the Hierarchy and of which he is simply the agent or channel. He has therefore to learn to distinguish between the various energies he contacts. The initiate has to master the techniques of differentiating between:

1. His own energy or energies, which have been generated [375] as the result of his life experiences down the ages or centuries.

2. His ray energy which, rightly used, conditions his work with and for the Hierarchy.

3. The energy of the ashram of which he may avail himself in the process of carrying out activities—initiated by impression. In the early stages he calls this the energy of his Master, but learns later that it is—in reality—the energy generated by his Master's group, the ashram.

4. Hierarchical energy or the energy of certain associated ashrams or of the entire group of Ashrams, the Hierarchy itself. The use of this highly qualified and most potent energy can only be employed when the disciple has earned the right to certain privileges and can be trusted to use the potencies correctly.

5. The energy of the Head of the Hierarchy, or the Christ force, as it is sometimes called. This force imports into the usually available energies certain conditioning qualities which emanate from Shamballa, and are therefore related to the will aspect. This type of force has not hitherto been available to working disciples but is now available, having been released at the Wesak Festival of this year (1948). Even now it can be used only by highly trusted disciples, and usually by those only whose rays are the first Ray of Power or Will or the second Ray of Love-Wisdom. These will be the rays of one or other of the two major vehicles—that of the soul and that of the personality. There are naturally exceptions to this rule, and these exceptions will be increasingly numerous as time speeds by; but in the present time, first and second ray vehicles provide the line of least resistance.

The first Point of Revelation has necessarily an unique relation to the physical plane, to the hierarchical workers in physical bodies, and to those who consciously use the ajna centre. The number of those who can work with the energy of thought is now very great, because so many hundreds of thousands have taken the first initiation. This becomes clear when you realise the untold numbers of those who are definitely [376] oriented towards the light, who are spiritually motivated and are consciously trying to tread the Path or—to express the idea in Christian phraseology—to follow the footsteps of Christ. They may know nothing of the occult teaching or of esoteric techniques, but the discipline of their lives and their realised fixed intention and service bring them inevitably, eventually, on to the occult way. They are learning to think; they earnestly seek to know the right way for humanity, and desire to ascertain the will of God; they are therefore building thoughtforms and are developing the power to be impressed. At present, they appear to be putting the cart before the horse, and they need to learn to think after impression; but this the spread of the various meditative processes will eventually correct. Later, the directing potency of the ajna centre (the centre between the eyebrows) will attract their attention and the triple process of impression, thoughtform construction, and energy direction will be mastered by them, and the first point of revelation will no longer be a revelation; they will be committed to an intelligent implementing of the Plan upon the physical plane.

The Second Point of Revelation: The Will is an expression of the Law of Sacrifice.

The second Point of Revelation is of peculiar interest. It concerns the first contact of the initiated disciple with the energy emanating from Shamballa and transmitted to him via the Master of the Ashram with which he is at this time associated. He has not yet reached the stage wherein direct contact is permitted, but still needs the ashramic protection which the Master provides. At the indicated second initiation he receives a quality of stimulation which enables him to "see" the astral plane as it essentially is; with this revelation comes also the recognition of the basic human necessity to "make it holy" or to "render whole" that which provides the most disturbing element in the existence of mankind.

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I cannot here deal with psychic construction, with astral impulses or glamours, nor can I spend time referring to the usual astral conditions—so well known and so carefully followed by the mass of men. Each human being has eventually to make his own definite decision anent the astral plane and his release from its control, and has then to follow (for several lives) a policy of non-association with its phenomena. But the initiate-disciple receives an unique revelation and an applied conditioning which enable him to recognise it as a man-created whole or world or state of consciousness (whichever term you may care to employ) and therefore as something which must be transformed. Two things consequently emerge in his consciousness:

1. That the astral plane is not God-created, or divinely "inspired," but is the product of human desire, evinced at the very dawn of human intelligence; this desire has built thoughtforms which are in tune or allied to every phase of human desire from the lowest type of physical desire up to the spiritual aspiration of the man who is seeking liberation. What can the disciple, therefore, do to make the astral plane "holy" or "set apart" and segregated from the sum total which the Divine Thinker, Sanat Kumara, has created, and with which the desires of mankind—through the medium of the astral world—have, fortunately for the individual man, become entangled? At this point, he knows that he must, inevitably and eventually, contribute something. He realises that he must intelligently work towards the separation of the astral plane from the six planes of divine creation. I would ask you to remember, brother of mine, that the star of creation is the six-pointed star and not a seven-pointed star.

2. As the needed service which must be rendered takes possession of the heart and mind of the initiate, the method is simultaneously revealed to him. This method is the use of an "advancing point of light"; it is, however, a form of light which can only be implemented by the will; this will can only fully complete its task when all three [378] aspects of the will—as exemplified in the three points of the Spiritual Triad—have all been sequentially employed.

You can see, therefore, how different is the revelation which comes to the initiate than are those which the average aspirant and disciple regard as astounding revelations. Their sense of values is in error. There is a group service quality to the revelation with which we are dealing, and also about these five stages of revelation, which is unknown until the antahkarana has been created, thus linking the Spiritual Triad and the Personality. The energy then to be used is entirely related to the Will aspect of divinity. This does not demonstrate as it does with average advanced humanity, as applied goodwill, but it expresses itself as a dynamic destructive spiritual Will; it adds its quota of destroying energy to the task of destruction with which the Hierarchy is confronted in connection with the astral plane.

This Point of Revelation brings with it certain revelations of an unexpected nature and imparts to the initiate certain new and significant results which register as truths to the initiate-consciousness. He discovers that he must learn the divine nature of the destroying aspect of the Will; he learns that it is not related, when demonstrating as this particular aspect, to determination or fixed intention, but is a fluid energy which can be directed toward the plane of desire wherever and whenever contacted; he finds out also that, in order to combat this vast and vibrant astral world, an aspect of light must be employed, and that therefore he is being given his first opportunity to work with Light under the inspiration of the Will—as do all the Members of the Hierarchy; he realises, consequently, that he must employ this aspect of light under the action—definitely directed—of the Will, in order to bring about the disappearance of that world as a sentient conscious entity; he knows that he must primarily destroy the astral phenomena for which he is creatively responsible, and that (having done this) he must demonstrate his complete freedom from the phenomenal contact of the astral plane at the second, the third and the fourth initiations. [379] This he must do through the "advancing light" of lower mental substance, and the activity of the buddhic level of activity; then to this he adds the destroying power of the atmic level of activity. He has to take note, in this process, of a certain level of responsibility. Thus he can finally destroy (with the means of the advancing light of the atmic plane) a certain proportion of astral substance for which he is not individually responsible but which is nevertheless related to the group or to the nation with which he is by birth or inclination affiliated. It is the united and synthetic use of the three triadal expressions of energy which makes the work of the world servers effective.

You can see from this short résumé which I have given you about the results of the second point of revelation, how widely comprehensive is the entire theme of revelation as it implements, impulses and motivates hierarchical activity. Through those revelations the initiate-disciple becomes aware of the task which he must fulfil and the next immediate step which humanity must take—through one or other of its grouped masses. These revelations concern the use of the Will in implementing the evolutionary aspect of the divine purpose. In all these points of revelation the Spiritual Triad is involved, and every one of the revelations is—in a steady crescendo of illumination—the result of initiation.

All the five points of revelation are conveyed or make their impression at each initiation, but differ greatly according to the initiation taken. The use of the Will aspect in "making holy" or in "setting apart," is active not only at the second initiation, but in all of them and—in a peculiar sense—at the sixth Initiation of Decision; of this initiation the six-pointed star is the symbol. The decision there involved tests the initiate as to how free he is from all desire—a factor which impregnates the entire creative world. Freedom from that control indicates the recognition of the Will as an expression of the Law of Sacrifice.

The Christian interpretation of the Will of God and of the significance of sacrifice is based, in reality, on human revolt and on human refusal to see anything in the spiritual life but an unintelligent acceptance of the inscrutable divine [380] Will; it posits also the need for pain and the suffering of sacrifice in the sense of complete abnegation of all that might be regarded as good and useful, as desirable and joyful. This revolt has coloured the entire presentation of what Christian theologians regard as God's Will; this presentation involves the unavoidable imposition of the will of a transcendental Deity, and leads inevitably (though totally inconclusively) to the dreadful and symbolic death of the Christ upon the Cross and to the painful and sacrificial life of the spiritual man. There is much teaching given out by the church upon the necessity of the submission of the human will to the divine Will; however, little or no teaching is given of the joyous use of the Will of Christ, immanent in every form, and peculiarly active in the form of humanity, and therefore capable of joyous and understanding use. The idea that sacrifice signifies happiness and a joyful process of making desire "holy" is absent; theologians refuse to recognise that the releasing of the energy confined and imprisoned upon the astral plane, into "enlightened" service upon other planes, is neither comprehended nor in any way understood.

The concept of substance runs through all that is here given; the atrophying of the substance of the astral plane, the merging of "lightened" substance with that of other planes, the use of the substance of light as a medium of spiritual destruction, and the bringing in of the three types and qualities of the substance of the Spiritual Triad (in order to liberate humanity) is never noted. Nevertheless, these three types of substance (mental, buddhic and atmic) are all symbolised for us upon the Mount of Crucifixion. There are also far deeper meanings to the well-known Gospel symbolism than those which have been recognised or studied.

I have here, however, thrown some light upon this second point of revelation, and much upon which you could well ponder and reflect.

PART IX

You will find it of value, brother of mine, to summarise the mass of information which I have given anent Initiation; [381] I refer not only to that which is contained within these particular instructions but to that which is to be found within all the many books which I have written. Isolated statements and interesting details are really of no major importance. It is the entire general picture and the recognition of the place of initiation in the evolutionary scheme which should engage your attention. Earlier in these instructions I pointed out to you that meditation was a planetary technique; in the same way, initiation may be regarded as indicative of successive planetary consummations marking, for instance, the birth of each of the kingdoms in nature; initiation is, par excellence, a series of graded steps or awakenings which enable the human being to become eventually a member, or a point of light, in the Kingdom of God. When an adequate number of members of the fourth kingdom have undergone the process of initiation (technically understood), then the fifth kingdom will come into exoteric manifestation. The method of making this hitherto subjective kingdom a factual entity is rapidly nearing, and the proof of this is—for the first time in history—group initiation. This can now be undertaken, and it is for this that the Hierarchy is working today, where aspirants and disciples are concerned.

The problem of group initiation must be, I know, one of difficulty for you to consider. Many questions must naturally arise. Can, for instance, the faults of a disciple keep the group back from initiation? The answer is no. The result of the dominant shortcomings of the members of the group being prepared for initiation only serves to eliminate them from the group temporarily, but it does not thereby hold back the group. The group moves forward through the door when all the necessary eliminations have taken place, and also when the group has developed certain capacities—as a whole and mutually. Let me specify some of these capacities, but without going into detail:

1. The capacity to be outward looking and interested in the reactions of life and of events upon humanity.

2. The steady tendency towards decentralisation, so that the personal self is handled with a just sense of proportion [382] but is not regarded as the dominant factor in the daily life.

3. As a result of this decentralisation the aspirant grows increasingly towards a more complete fusion with the group. He knows himself to be an integral part of the group and with all that such a relationship involves.

4. He is becoming every day more integrated. This integration is a fourfold one:

a. His personality, in its various aspects, is integrated into one functioning whole.

b. He is achieving a pronounced relationship with the soul, and for this reason is becoming a soul-infused personality.

c. As a worker for humanity, he is blending always more closely with the group in training, and is becoming an integral part of it through similarity of aims, spiritual aspiration and trained techniques.

d. He is slowly being integrated into the very heart of humanity; this puts him in touch with the Heart of the Hierarchy and—through the Hierarchy—energies from the Heart of the Sun can reach him.

5. He indicates a growing sensitivity to all that is spiritually esoteric (forget not that there is an esotericism which is not spiritual, but which is strictly related to black magic); his inner hearing and his eye of vision are rapidly being brought into an occult focus.

These are simply some of the capacities unfolded by the individual aspirant and—if you study them with care—you will realise that they are of fundamental importance. It is the fusion of all these capacities in group work which enables the group to seek initiation and to be welcomed through the slowly opening door by Those Who are to be found upon the other side.

Another question which might well be asked is: Do all the members of the group have to be at the same point upon the Path of Discipleship, or can they be at many differing [383] stages of discipleship or initiation? What you really mean when you ask this question is: Is the group—composed as it is of individuals—taking the same initiation? Are all its members at exactly the same point in evolution? By no means. A group should be (and is) composed of individuals at varying points of development; some may be preparing for the second initiation; others may be in training for the third initiation, and a few may be ready for the fourth or the fifth initiation. The nature of the initiation to be undergone is known only to the disciple and his Master; it is of no interest to the group itself; the diversity of the initiations for which preparation is being made tends to enrich the group content; the more ray types which are found functioning in the group, the more valuable will be its service. It is the bringing together of groups in preparation for initiation which has led to the present basic change in the methods of the Hierarchy. A would-be-initiate does not, at first, work solely under the care of the Master of a particular Ashram. Certain of the Masters (usually Masters like myself who have only lately passed through the fifth initiation) have been chosen to train and instruct aspirants on all the rays until after the third Initiation of Transfiguration.

Then and only then does the disciple-initiate pass into the Ashram of the Master of his ray— one of the senior Masters in connection with the seven major Ashrams. If he is a disciple in the Ashram of a Master Who is on one of the Rays of Attribute, the task of that Master is to prepare him for transition on to one of the major Rays of Aspect. This shifting and interchange is taking place all the time. When, for instance, the Master R. assumed the task of Mahachohan or Lord of Civilisation, His Ashram was shifted from the seventh Ray of Ceremonial Order to the third Ray of Active Intelligence; the majority of those who have taken the second and the third initiations were transferred with Him under what might be called a "special dispensation"; the rest of the members of His Ashram remained for tuition and training in service under that Master Who took His place as the central point of the seventh ray Ashram.

Still another question could well be asked: What is the [384] attitude of the group during initiation if the individual members are undergoing different initiations? Is the group integrity imperiled? During the period of initiation, their attitude is one of focussed, concentrated and deep meditation in which the inner attitude is given solely to the concept of Hierarchy. The disciple is not, at this time, occupied with the Ashram of which he is a part or with any questionings as to the nature of the Ashram into which he is now entering as an initiate—either as an initiate of the Earth initiations or, in the senior grades, as an initiate of the Sirian regime. He is—during the first four initiations—entirely centred in consciousness upon the larger Whole wherein the Ashram to which he belongs is a part; he is attentive to the Christ, the Head of the Hierarchy, because He is the Initiator of the first two initiations which always seem to the neophyte of major importance. After the third initiation he is attentive to that "veiled Presence of awful Power Who tests his fitness for working in the will of God." I would ask you to note the peculiar phrasing "working in the will of God," and to remember that that Will, centred or focussed in Shamballa, is one of the great basic energies; the initiate has to learn to work in and through that Will. If, therefore, each initiate in the group is conscious of the initiation next to be taken, then subconsciously he eliminates all awareness of outer contacts and stands alone, and yet in group formation, before one or other of the two Initiators. The inflow of dynamic energy which comes to him through the application of the Rod of Initiation becomes a group inheritance and serves to galvanise, integrate and fuse the group into renewed activity and a deeper subjective union.