SOME BASIC ASSUMPTIONS
We are entering upon a course of study wherein the entire tendency will be to throw the student back upon himself, and thus upon that larger self which has only, in most cases, made its presence felt at rare and highly emotional intervals. When the self is known and not simply felt and, when the realisation is mental as well as sensory, then truly can the aspirant be prepared for initiation.
I would like to point out that I am basing my words upon certain basic assumptions, which for the sake of clarity, I want briefly to state.
Firstly, that the student is sincere in his aspiration, and is determined to go forward no matter what may be the reaction of and upon the lower self. Only those who can clearly differentiate between the two aspects of their nature, the real self and the illusory self, can work intelligently . . . (4 – 53),
Secondly, I am acting upon the assumption that all have lived long enough and battled sufficiently with deterrent forces of life, to have enabled them to develop a fairly true sense of values. . . . They are not to be kept back by any happenings to the personality or by the pressure of time and circumstance, by age or physical disability. They have wisely learnt that enthusiastic rushing forward, and a violent energetic progress has its drawbacks, and that a steady, regular, persistent endeavour will carry them further in the long run. Spasmodic spurts of effort and temporary pressure peter out into disappointment and a weighty sense of failure . . .
Thirdly, I assume that those who set themselves seriously to benefit by the instructions in this book, are prepared to carry out the simple requirements, to read what is written thoughtfully, to attempt to organise their minds, and adhere to their meditation work. The organising of the mind is an all-day affair, and the application of the mind to the thing in hand throughout the daily avocations, is the best way to make study and meditation periods fruitful, and bring about fitness for the vocation of the disciple.
With these assumptions clearly understood, my words are for those who are seeking to measure up to the need for trained servers. I say not, you note, those who measure up. Intention and effort are considered by us of prime importance, and are the two main requisites for all disciples, initiates and Masters, plus the power of persistence. (4 – 54). [Page 2]
FOOD FOR THOUGHT
(1) We have before us in this study, much food for thought. The subjects touched upon are deep, difficult to understand, and hard to grasp. Careful reading, however, quiet reflection, and a practical application of the sensed truth, and of the intuited idea, will gradually bring enlightenment and lead to acquiescence in the techniques of the soul, and the appropriation of the teaching. (15 – 289).
(2) It is not material whether the reader receive the message of these pages as a spiritual appeal in an idealistic setting, a presentation of alleged facts, or a theory evolved by one student and presented for the consideration of fellow students. To each it is offered for whatever of inner response it may evoke, for whatever of inspiration and of light it may bring.
In these days of the shattering of old form and the building of the new, adaptability is needed. We must avert the danger of crystallisation, through pliability and expansion. The "old order changeth", but primarily it is a change of dimension and aspect, and not of material or of foundation. The fundamentals have always been true. To each generation is given the part of conserving the essential features of the old and beloved form, but also of wisely expanding and enriching it. Each cycle must add the gain of further research and scientific endeavour, and subtract that which is worn out and of no value. Each age must build in the product and triumphs of its period, and abstract the accretions of the past that would dim and blur the outline. Above all, to each generation is given the joy of demonstrating the strength of the old foundations, and the opportunity to build upon these foundations a structure that will meet the needs of the inner evolving life. (1 – 2).
(3) Every religious faith holds out the promise that those who seek with earnestness shall find that which they are seeking; let us, therefore, seek. If by our search we find that all these statements are but visionary dreams, and profit not at all, leading us only into darkness, time will nevertheless not have been lost, for we shall have ascertained where not to look. If by our search, on the other hand, corroboration comes little by little, and the light shines ever more clearly, let us persist until that day dawns when the light which shineth in darkness will have illuminated the heart and the brain, and the seeker will awaken to the realisation that the whole trend of evolution has been to bring him this expansion of consciousness and this illumination, and that the attainment of the initiatory process, and the entrance into the fifth kingdom is no wild chimera or phantasm, but an [Page 3] established fact in the consciousness. This each man must ascertain for himself. Each soul … must find out within himself, remembering ever that the Kingdom of God is within, and that only those facts which are realised within the individual consciousness as truths are of any value. In the meantime, that which many know, and have ascertained within themselves to be truths of an incontrovertible nature for them, may be stated; to the intelligent reader will then arise the opportunity and the responsibility of ascertaining for himself their falsity or truth. .(1 – 26/7).
(4) Goodness and altruism grow out of realisation and service, and holiness of character is the outcome of those expansions of consciousness which a man brings about within himself through strenuous effort and endeavour. (1 – 93).
(5) The moment a man becomes consciously powerful on the mental plane, his power for good is a hundredfold increased. (1 – 172).
(6) In the use of words comes limitation, and a clouding of the idea; words literally veil or hide thoughts, detract from their clarity, and confuse them by expression. (3 – 150).
(7) The earth is an organism within a greater one, and this fact needs wider recognition. The sons of men upon this planet so often view the whole system as if the earth were in the position of the sun, the centre of the solar organism. (3 – 177).
(8) Most men do not as yet distinguish with accuracy between themselves as the thinker, persistent in time and space, and the vehicle through which they think, which is ephemeral and transient. (3 – 419).
(9) The problem of labour and capital has its roots in the subjective distinction between "equipped and unequipped" Egos, between those units of the human family on earth who have passed out of the Hall of Ignorance, and those who are yet groping in its dark and gloomy corridors. (3 – 826).
(10) If man can be brought to a realisation of the nature of his own being and of his constitution, and can be led to comprehend the rationale of that which can be seen occurring, and if the thinkers of the race can be shown the risks incident upon present happenings in the deva evolution, much danger may be averted. Hence the decision to extend the scope of this book to include more detailed information anent the deva evolution. (Footnote 3 – 908).
(11) No man is ever put into circumstances which are insurmountable, once he has reached the point where he has intelligently put himself on the side of evolution, or of God. Prior to that he may, and will, be driven by [Page 4] gales of circumstance; the press of group and racial karma will force him into situations necessary for the process of awakening him to his own innate possibilities. Once he becomes the conscious builder himself, seeking to control the forces and builders of his lower nature, and to construct the Temple of Solomon, then he is no longer subject to the earlier conditions. He becomes a ruler, a builder, and a transmitter, until the time comes when he is one with the solar Angels, and the work of human evolution is accomplished. (3 – 946).
(12) It takes a seer of vast wisdom and experience to state exactly the stage at which any particular unit of the human family may be. He that is wise always refrains from assertion until he knows. (3 – 968).
(13) Only he who is free can control and utilise those who are prisoners. (3 – 1023).
(14) Just as it is not possible for a man in an early incarnation to conceive of the effects of evolution upon him and to realise the nature of the man upon the Path, so it is not possible for even great systemic existences to conceive (except in the broadest and most general terms) of the nature of the solar Logos, and of the effect evolution will have on Him. (3 – 1152).
(15) Those who see a vision that is withheld from those lacking the necessary equipment for its apprehension, are regarded as fanciful, and unreliable. When many see the vision, its possibility is admitted, but when humanity itself has the awakened and open eye, the vision is no longer emphasised, but a fact is stated and a law enunciated. Such has been the history of the past and such will be the process in the future. (4 – 16).
(16) Every step of the way has to be carved out by a man himself, and there is no short or easy road out of darkness into light. (4 – 60).
(17) The whole secret of success in treading the occult path, depends upon an attitude of mind; when the attitude is one of concrete materialism, of concentration upon form, and a desire for the things of the present moment, little progress can be made in apprehending the higher esoteric truth. (4 – 84).
(18) Seek to equip your instrument, learn to function in quietness, fulfill your obligations and do your duty, develop restraint of speech and that calm poise that comes from an unselfish life motive, and forget the selfish satisfaction that might well up in the heart when recognition of faithfulness comes from the watching Hierarchy. (4 – 129).
(19) Nothing in heaven or hell, on earth or elsewhere, can prevent the progress of the man who has awakened to the illusion, who has glimpsed [Page 5] the reality beyond the glamour of the astral plane, and who has heard, even if only once, the clarion call of his own soul. (4 – 223).
(20) The outcome of good is inevitable. It is, however, a question of a slow or a rapid realisation and liberation from the great world illusion, and to this end every aspirant is begged to work strenuously and to lend his aid. Every man who liberates himself, who sees clearly, and who releases himself from the glamour of illusion, aids in the Great Work. (4 – 224).
(21) That the inner vision may be ours, the eye see clearly the glory of the Lord, and the voice speak only in benediction, and the hands be used only in helpfulness, may well be the prayer of each of us. (4 – 253).
(22) In an esoteric sense, all in the future will become lighter, more rarified and more etherealised. (4 – 390).
(23) Those who know and who sense the inner guiding hand of the Hierarchy, are aware that the heart of humanity is sound, and that out of the present chaos, and perhaps largely because of it, there will emerge those competent to deal with the situation and adequate to the task of unification and synthesis. (4 – 409).
(24) There is never anything static in the creative process; energy which is flowing forth in the pulsation of the one Life, and its rhythmic and cyclic activity – never ending and never resting – must be somewhere utilised, and must find its way in some direction, often (when man fails in his duty) with catastrophic results. (4 – 461).
(25) These intriguing pieces of information, which I at times convey, and which some of the students seem to regard as of vital importance, are of far less importance than the injunction to live kindly, speak words of gentleness and of wisdom, and practice self-forgetfulness. (4 – 466).
(26) Each field of awareness in its boundaries constitute a prison, and ... the objective of all work of liberation, is to release the consciousness, and expand its field of contacts. Where there are boundaries of any kind, where a field of influence is circumscribed, and where the radius of contact is limited, there you have a prison. Ponder on this statement for it holds much of truth. (4 – 535).
(27) Persist. Failure never prevents success. Difficulties develop the strength of the soul. The secret of success is ever to stand steady and to be impersonal. (4 – 559).
(28) All vaunted freedom or vaunted control, is but the temporary reaction of a humanity which is swept by ideas, controlled by ideals, impulsed by selfishness, impregnated by hates, and yet all the time is struggling to express the higher and better qualities, and to free itself from the thralldom [Page 6] of ancient evil, the slavery of ancient codes, and the curse of ancient habits of thought and living. It is what is happening behind the scenes of mankind as a whole which is of moment; it is the unfoldment of the human consciousness which counts with the Hierarchy. (9 – 25).
(29) The world problem is essentially a religious problem, and behind all strife in every department of world thought today is to be found the religious element. (9 – 35).
(30) The great and fundamental law that "energy follows thought", always holds good, and one of the conditions which is inducing the present stress and strain, is due to the fact that so many millions of people are beginning to think. (9 – 35).
(31) Peace will be the result of understanding and sharing, and not the origin of them, as the pacifists so often imply. (9 – 98).
(32) The peoples of the world are entering the wilderness experience, and will find in the wilderness how little is required for full living, true experience, and real happiness . . . Freedom from material things carries with it its own beauty and reward, its own joy and glory. Thus he is liberated to live the life of the mind.
The selfishness of the people who are desirous of being unselfish, is great. (10 – 75/6).
(33) "All men are equal" ... It is indeed a statement of fact, but when no allowance is
made for the equally important ideas of evolution, of racial attributes, and of national and religious characteristics, then the basic idea receives only limited application. (10 – 132).
(34) The cause of all sorrow and woes is desire – desire for that which is material. ... "No man liveth unto himself", and no nation either, and ... the goal of all human effort is loving understanding, prompted by a love for the whole. (10 – 166).
(35) As we have been told, there are sixty thousand million units of consciousness, or spirits in the evolving human hierarchy. (2 – 34).
(36) It takes a wise disciple always to discriminate between the voice of his real Teacher, and the false whispers of the masquerading one. (2 – 132).
(37) When the pupil recognises practically all the time, that he is not his vehicles, but is indeed the divine Dweller within them, then certain things will be imparted to him. (2 – 157).
(38) Two-thirds of humanity ... will stand upon the Path at the close of this age, and with that, one-third will be held over for later unfoldment. (14 – xviii).[Page 7]
(39) The majority of true esotericists are found outside, and not within, the bulk of the schools which call themselves esoteric. (14 – 183).
(40) In the West, a man has legally one wife, but through his promiscuity and his so-called "romantic" adventures, he really has as many as an African chieftain; and today, women are little better. (14 – 274).
(41) Man stands midway between heaven and earth, with his feet deep in the mud of material life, and his head in heaven. In the majority of cases his eyes are closed, and he sees not the beauty of the heavenly vision or they are open, but fixed upon the mud and slime with which his feet are covered. But when his open eyes are lifted for a brief moment, and see the world of reality, and of spiritual values, then the torn and distracted life of the aspirant begins. (14 – 312).
(42) One of the most difficult things with which the Masters are today confronted, is to prove to man that the old and recognised values, and the tangible world of phenomena (emotional and physical), must be relegated to their right place in the background of man's consciousness, and that the intangible realities, and the world of ideas and causes must be, for him, in the immediate future, the main centre of attraction. When man grasps this, and lives by this knowledge, then the glamour which now holds the world will disappear. (14 – 341).
(43) The standard of happenings varies in importance according to the angle of vision, and what (from the angle of our Earth's unfoldment in consciousness) may be a factor of prime importance, and of determining value, may (from the angle of the universe) be of trifling moment. The affairs of an individual are, to him, of momentous import; to humanity as a whole, they are of small concern. It all depends upon which unit holds the centre of the stage in the drama of life, and around which central factor the happenings, trivial or important, pursue their cyclic way. (14 – 395).
(44) A mystery only remains a mystery when ignorance and unbelief exist. There is no mystery where there is knowledge and faith. (15 – 280).
(45) Power selfishly used, exhausts its user, and evokes a display of power antagonistic to him; he is thereby destroyed, because he has destroyed. (15 – 353).
(46) Every step forward in evolution and, therefore, towards the spiritual goal, is always at a cost, and through the relinquishing of that which has hitherto been held dear. (15 – 582).
(47) Human beings are innately kind, when their minds are not distorted and their vision impaired by the false teaching of any selfish interest, political propaganda, and racial or religious difficulties. (15 – 655).
(48) Disease and death are essentially conditions inherent in substance; just as long as a man identifies himself with the form aspect, so will he be conditioned by the Law of Dissolution. This law is a fundamental and natural law governing the life of the form in all the kingdoms of nature. When the disciple or initiate is identifying himself with the soul, and when the antahkarana is built by means of the life principle, then the disciple passes out of the control of this universal, natural law, and uses or discards the body at will – at the demand of the spiritual will, or through recognition of the necessities of the Hierarchy or the purposes of Shamballa. (17 – 501).
(49) Release from the threefold form is ever regarded by the spiritual man as the greatest possible good, provided it comes to him under law, as the result of his spiritual destiny and of karmic decision; it must not come as an arbitrary act, or as an escape from life and its consequences upon the physical plane, or as self-imposed. (17 – 661).
(50) The habit of goodness, of right reaction, and of instinctual understanding, is distinctive of the trained initiate. He has no need to remember rules, theories, planes or activities. These are as much an established part of his nature as the instinct of self-preservation is an instinctive part of the equipment of a normal human being. Think this out, and endeavour to build up the right spiritual habits. In this way the Master wastes no time on soul or personal plans. He has the habit – based on divine instinctual memory – of right activity, right understanding, and right purpose. He needs not to recollect. (18 – 66).
(51) Can one take life? I think not. Life IS. Naught in heaven or on earth can touch or affect it. This is a point oft forgotten. Life cannot be taken in the spiritual sense. . . . Life is impregnable; it cannot be taken or destroyed but "passes on" from form to form, form experience to experience, until the perfect will of God is expressed through life. (18 – 125).
(52) The bulk of human beings are still too hungry, too devastated psychically, too bewildered and distressed, and too unsure of their future, their freedom and their security, to be in any condition to listen to Him. (8 – 110).
(53) We are passing through one of the great natural transitional periods at this time. We are laying the foundation for the emergence of a new species of human being – a more highly evolved unit within the human family – hence much of our problem, and much of the present failure to meet the demands of the race, and to measure up to human need for development. (12 – 14).
(54) Your vision is oft distorted by the pain and suffering to which the form is subjected (either your own or that of others, individually or en masse), so that you do not see clearly the purpose and the urgency of the life within the form. (12 – 111).
(55) Accidents to individuals are the result, usually, of an explosion of force, and these explosions are caused by the hatreds and the unkind thoughts and the critical words of those involved in the accident. (13 – 62).
(56) By holding, man loses; by relinquishing, he gains; by seeking to grasp that which he has, it must and will inevitably disappear. (13 – 83).
(57) Be content with your duty and the immediate service which will lead you a step further upon the way to which you are ordained, and this way you can travel rapidly and with eager feet, or slowly and with lagging steps. (13 – 93).
(58) A brief period of organised effort and, at the end, death, is of more vital usefulness today, than a futile doing of the things a man feels like doing in a leisurely way, and then meandering feebly down the years. (13 – 382).
(59) Good must ultimately triumph, but the Hierarchy does not know what the immediate future holds for humanity, because men determine their own destiny. (5 – 74).
(60) One of the first lessons which a disciple needs to learn, is that where he thinks he is strongest and where he finds the most satisfaction, is very frequently the point of greatest danger and of weakness. (5 – 77).
(61) I would remind you that the life of the disciple is ever a life of risks and of dangers, entered into willingly and deliberately in the cause of spiritual unfoldment, and the service of humanity. (5 – 88).
(62) That which appears is not always that which truly is; that which rends and disrupts the personality life is frequently the agent of release, if rightly apprehended; that which will emerge when the Forces of Light have penetrated the world darkness, will demonstrate the nature of the undying human spirit. (5 – 100).
(63) Go your own way with strength and silence, and do that which your soul demands. Let not the lesser voices of the loved and near deflect you from your progress upon the path of service. You belong now to the world, and not to a handful of your fellowmen. (5 – 140).
(64) The reactions of others are not your responsibility. It is your responsibility to give them strength and detachment. Shoulder not, therefore, responsibilities which are not yours. (5 – 405).
(65) How seldom do those who have the time and the leisure serve as do those who have no time or leisure. (5 – 543).
(66) Be not in any way discouraged, brother of old, if you find the upward way stiff and hard to climb. You are in good company and are not alone. (5 – 599).
(67) You have much to give, and I would urge you to give it, and in so doing I would also urge you not to become unduly aware of your efficient giving. (5 – 641).
(68) Learn to keep the things that concern yourself to yourself. (5 – 662).
(69) It is effort which counts. The results will be inevitable, and commensurate with the effort. (5 – 727).
(70) The cry of the neophyte is: "Tell me. Tell me. Then I will change. I will accept anything that is said, but tell me." The cry of the disciple is: "Aid the work. Forget yourself. The world needs you." (5 – 737).
(71) Let your horizon be wide, and your humility great. (6 – 3).
(72) To be truly effective, you must cultivate the attitude of being only a clear unobstructed channel, and you must not block that channel with your ideas, your plans and your physical plane activities. (6 – 443).
(73) Are you co-operating with the Plan, or in reality with your own plans? (6 – 448).
(74) At the centre of a great tornado is a point of peace. Thus does the story go. It can be found. And thus it is with all the storms of life. They lead to peace if you are not a leaf. (6 – 627).
(75) Be not afraid of loneliness. The soul that cannot stand alone has naught to give. (6 – 755).
(1) This treatise is, therefore, somewhat abstruse, and quite symbolical. It may appear difficult to comprehend, and it may mean little to some and nothing at all to others. If the disciples of the world are truly struggling, and if they are applying practically the teaching given, as far as in them lies, they will find as time elapses, and their reason and intuition awakens, that such symbolic and abstruse statements become clearer and clearer, serving to convey the intended teaching. When this happens, the Angel of the Presence approaches ever closer, and lights the disciple on his way. The[Page 11]sense of separateness diminishes until, at last, light penetrates the darkness, and the Angel dominates the life. (15 – 48/9).
(2) "Ponder on this." This is my frequent injunction, given because the activity of reflection is a potent means to revelation. (16 – 292).
(3) You might here ask, why I deal here with these abstractions? I would reply, that in your effort to understand and to grasp the truth which lies beyond your reason, (even when regarding it as a hypothesis hereto unproven), you are gradually developing an aspect of your mind which is much needed in the processes of realisation, and which must be called into effective service during initiation. Such an effort is needed, if true understanding is to occur; initiation is the demonstration of intuitive understanding put to practical expression. (16 – 391).
(4) Again, I have to repeat how vast is the subject with which we are dealing, and all these earlier instructions, and the answers which I give to the questions, only serve to show how abstruse the matter is. But if you will have patience and will be willing to learn by absorption more than by analysis, you will later discover that you know much – intuitively and discriminately. (17 – 308).
(5) Students should not be deceived by simplicity, and by the plain, direct statements. There is a tendency to regard esoteric teaching as necessarily abstruse and indirect, requiring always the use of the "esoteric sense" (whatever is meant by that) in order to arrive at understanding. Yet the more advanced the teaching, very frequently the more simply is it expressed. Abstruseness is related to the ignorance of the student – not to the mode of presentation of the teacher. (17 – 629).
(6) Much of what I have said above, will seem meaningless to you . . . but as I have earlier told you, I write for those disciples and initiates who are now coming into incarnation, and who will be in the full flower of their consciousness and service, at the latter end of this century. But the effort you make to understand, will have its effect, even if the brain registers it not. (18 – 34).
(7) The true understanding is, I realise, not possible for you, but much can be gained by your effort to comprehend. (18 – 304).
(8) As you can see, we are venturing into realms far beyond your comprehension; but the effort to grasp the unattainable, and to exercise the mind along the line of abstract thought, is ever of value. (18 – 646).
(9) I am quite aware that what I am here communicating may seem to you the veriest nonsense, and there is, of course, no possible way in which I can prove to you the factual nature of this inter-communicating system, or [Page 12] in which you can check and confirm what I say; hut then, my brothers, you have no way as yet of ascertaining the factual existence of Sanat Kumara, and yet, from the very night of time, His existence has been proclaimed by the Hierarchy, and accepted by millions. Every human being believes a great deal more than he can ever prove, or the validity of which he can establish, (11 – 164).