The Human Soul

by John Nash

Reprinted from The Beacon, 2003

  Many people… have experienced at sometime or another an illumination, an unfoldment, an uplifting, and a beatitude which has convinced them that there is a state of consciousness so far removed from that normally experienced as to bring them into a new state of being and a new level of awareness. ( A Treatise on White Magic)  

Consciousness and Form-Building

The soul, the Tibetan tells us, is “that entity which is brought into being when the spirit aspect and the matter aspect are related to each other”. 1 It is an expression of the second aspect of Deity, the mediating principle between spirit and matter, the form-building aspect of that awesome process through which the Logos descends into manifestation.“Throughout the universe”, we learn, “it is the soul which is the conscious, sensitive theme of the divine plan*. 2 Everything has a soul: from a rock, tree, horse, and human being, all the way to the planet and beyond.At the most rudimentary level of the mineral kingdom, the soul is “the sentient factor in substance itself”; in the higher kingdoms it expresses consciousness, as we more commonly understand it.

The soul gives the form its special characteristics, so that the tree is different from the rock and the horse, and the oak tree is different from the elm.The tree soul ensures that the seed develops into a shoot, a sapling, and a mature tree capable of propagation; it ensures that the tree’s roots penetrate the soil and its branches reach up to the sky, bearing leaves and fruit.In every kingdom it is the soul:

  which brings the form into being, which enables it to develop and grow so as to house more adequately the indwelling life, and which drives all God's creatures forward along the path of evolution, through one kingdom after another, towards an eventual goal and a glorious consummation. 3  

We speak of mineral souls, vegetable souls, and animal souls that are responsible for building the forms of their respective kingdoms, giving them sentient awareness, and providing “that innate faculty… which produces the undeniable intelligent activity which all demonstrate”. 4 These souls are not individualised and they participate in the larger collective soul that informs the planet: “the anima mundi or the soul of the world, the subjective side of all forms in the three worlds, of all bodies in the four kingdoms of nature”. 5 The “three worlds” are the physical, emotional, and mental planes:the planes of objective, earthly existence.

As human beings in physical incarnation we share forms and their associated souls with the lower kingdoms. We also have, in potentia or in actuality, human souls whose mission is to build the more specialised forms needed to nurture our indwelling life, give us our distinctive qualities, and drive us forward along our own path of evolution. This human soul is of a higher order than its lower counterparts because of the special relationship between the human Monad and its forms.

Individualisation not only set the human evolutionary experience aside from that of the lower kingdoms, but it also conditioned the nature, role, and objectives of the human soul. Whereas the mineral, vegetable, or animal soul is an undifferentiated form-building principle, the human soul is differentiated and has the potential for autonomous existence as an entity, expressing not only consciousness but self-consciousness.

The human soul allows humanity to express the principle of manas, or mind; and we see the flowering of this principle as the soul approaches maturity. The soul becomes the “Thinker”, the “Son of Mind” mediating between the lower mind of the personality and the higher mind of the spiritual Triad. Mind, “the great dividing factor”, is transmuted into the embodiment of Unity and Love. But soul maturation is the end-product of a long process of evolution. We need to trace this evolutionary process to see where the human soul came from and what stimulates its development.

Embryonic Human Soul

The human soul was the product of Monadic individualisation, but it was not born, fully formed and operational, at the instant of individualisation. Manas, the very factor that would distinguish man from the animals, was slow to develop. Indeed, it was the unexpectedly—even disappointingly—slow development of mind that prompted the planetary Logos to call upon the solar Angels during the third root race to nurture infant humanity. The solar Angel is known, in various occult traditions, as the Soul or Ego (each capitalised), Angel of the Presence, Holy Guardian Angel, Higher Genius, or Manasaputra. The nature and role of the solar Angel is discussed elsewhere. 6

In the Lemurian epoch, the human soul existed only in a latent state, and the solar Angels were brought in as surrogates to perform the necessary form-building functions. For millions of years the Angels orchestrated their human charges’ long sequence of incarnations, paying attention to karmic constraints, evolutionary needs, and any significant bonds of relationship that had developed.

Meanwhile, the animal soul continued to exercise a dominant role, and human forms resembled those of the third kingdom in both appearance and capability. Man may have been individualised, but he was slow to manifest features that would distinguish him either from his animal forebears or from his fellows. Even in Atlantean times, the Tibetan tells us:

  The soul was not then so individualised as it is now. The animal soul controlled, and consequently full contact with the anima mundi was the dominant factor. As time elapsed, the soul became more individualised in each human being, and more and more separative, as the mind aspect… dominated. 7  

Successive incarnations provided the learning experiences necessary for the gradual development of manas and the associated expansion of consciousness. However, there was no continuity of consciousness from one incarnation to the next, and herein lay a problem: where could the accumulated experience from successive lifetimes be stored? The problem did not exist in the lower kingdoms because the plurality of physical forms, spawned by a single Monad, ensured that the link between spirit and matter remained unbroken. When one member of a species died, its experience passed into the group soul to leaven future members. But with only one human form in manifestation at a time, and the Monad not yet awakened, all could be lost when the form died.

The solution for individualised man lay in the permanent atoms, the small force centers, “strung like pearls upon the sutratma, or thread” attached to the causal body. 8 All forms below the causal body, which resides on the third mental subplane (counting from above), are destroyed at the end of an incarnation. But experiences from the individual’s life in the three worlds are distilled into the physical and astral permanent atoms, which lie on their respective first subplanes, and the mental unit, which lies on its fourth subplane. The causal body and its three force centres survive physical death, and the latter serve as the nuclei around which new physical, astral, and mental vehicles can be built at the start of the next incarnation. Around the mental unit, a human soul will also take shape, but before this can happen the individual must develop a well-defined personality and raise its vibration to a suitable level.

Personality and Soul

“Personality” is derived from the Latin word persona: the mask that identifies an actor’s role in a play. Correspondingly, our personality shows the world who we are or want to be, or possibly what others would have us be. The personality embraces attitudes, moods, behaviour, and interactions with others and gives us distinguishing characteristics, beyond purely physical ones. The personality develops during childhood and young adulthood and then, in “normal” individuals, remains fairly stable until old age.

In essence the personality is a thoughtform, overshadowing the three lower vehicles. It serves as an organising principle, integrating sensory data from the lower vehicles and giving us coherency of consciousness and relative stability of identity. The personality emerges as soon as the lower mind is awakened and attains some degree of control over the physical and emotional natures.

Unfortunately, a degree of mental control adequate to organise the personality may not be enough to give it an effective mental focus; that is why many people with strong personalities are physically or emotionally focused. Nevertheless, as control grows stronger, the focus of consciousness rises to the mental level.

The personality’s upward reach in consciousness may increase over time, but it is intrinsically limited; the consciousness cannot rise above the mental unit, and consequently it cannot survive withdrawal of the life-force from the lower vehicles at physical death. Also, by instinct, the personality is self-serving and separative; its concerns lie with the self, or at best with the family or immediate social group with whom the individual identifies.

This situation changes when the personality starts to respond to the call of the solar Angel. At first the response may lie below the individual’s threshold of awareness, manifesting in nothing more than discontent: a pervasive sense of “something missing” from life. Psychotherapist Thomas Moore lists typical symptoms as emptiness, meaninglessness, depression, disillusionment, loss of values, yearning for fulfillment, and hunger for spirituality. 9

After a period, literally, of “soul-searching”, the individual begins to see new meaning or purpose in life and experiences some kind of spiritual renewal. He or she may develop a desire for self-improvement and/or new appreciation of esthetics and altruism. The individual may pursue these ideals with considerable passion, probably expressing them through the lower vehicles; for instance, self-improvement may be expressed through fitness training, or the spiritual urge through religious emotionalism. But there will be a growing awareness that their point of origin lies elsewhere, on some higher, or deeper, level. The individual may develop a new sense of immortality: a conviction that something lives on after death, beyond memories and accomplishments and elsewhere than in a traditional Heaven or Hell. There may also be a sense that some part of the human entity existed before birth.

These various stirrings signal the emergence of the human soul, and the growing awareness of its existence can evoke great joy. Kahlil Gibran expresses it well:

  Before my soul became my counsel, I was dull, and weak of hearing, reflecting only upon the tumult and the cry. But, now, I can listen to silence with serenity and can hear in the silence the hymns of ages chanting exaltation to the sky and revealing the secrets of eternity. 10  

The human soul develops as the result of the individual’s own choices—a consideration that provides a remarkable example of humanity’s controls over its own evolution. The soul can unfold to the extent that the individual’s priorities shift from the lower separative nature and its needs toward the higher nature and a broader array of needs: those of the community, the nation, and even humanity as a whole. Concern may extend to the natural environment and eventually to the totality of Life.

The development of group consciousness is, perhaps, the single most important factor permitting emergence of the human soul. The long phase of separative individualism may have delayed the soul’s emergence, but it created necessary tension; and when group consciousness finally takes root, the soul can unfold comparatively rapidly.

Like the personality, the human soul is fundamentally a thought-form emerging from the individual’s own being, although in this case it is not one created solely or even primarily by the lower self. Again like the personality, it overshadows its vehicles and evolves as an organising principle providing coherence of consciousness and identity. But, whereas the personality is focused on narrow self-interest and is limited to the lower mental subplanes and to a single incarnation, the human soul is group conscious, has greater reach and power, and—in terms of any meaningful time frame—is eternal. Whereas the personality has both a dark and a light side, the soul is a light-being.

Emergence of the human soul is accompanied by changes in the permanent atoms. As consciousness is awakened on each plane, the corresponding permanent atom starts to radiate light—light which has lain dormant since the primeval descent of the Monadic spark into matter. First the physical atom begins to radiate, then the astral atom, and finally the mental unit on the fourth mental subplane. The radiating light attracts matter of a higher vibration to each permanent atom, refining the vehicles and making them more receptive to the higher consciousness. The light of the mental unit also attracts chitta, or mind-stuff, from which the human soul is built.

The human soul emerges as a result of choices made at the personality level, in response to the call of the solar Angel. But in turn the emerging soul seeks to exercise its form-building function by rebuilding the personality. The personality becomes more distinctive, more vital, and more capable of fulfilling its mission in the three worlds. As the human soul emerges, service ceases to be a burdensome obligation and becomes instinctive:

  Service is a life demonstration. It is a soul urge, and is as much an evolutionary impetus of the soul as the urge to self-preservation or to the reproduction of the species is a demonstration of the animal soul. This is a statement of importance. It is a soul instinct, if we may use such an inadequate expression and is, therefore, innate and peculiar to soul unfoldment. It is the outstanding characteristic of the soul, just as desire is the outstanding characteristic of the lower nature. 11  

Thus a close relationship develops between the human soul and personality, and we speak of the “soul-infused personality” or “personality-soul fusion”. Both refer to the influx of higher energy and impressions into the personality and to the associated transformation in consciousness and behaviour. The personality is both purified and empowered. In the Tibetan’s words:

  The soul-infused personality… proceeds to recreate his environment and to cooperate consciously with the creative work of the Hierarchy. 12  

This cooperation may extend to participation in the work of a Master’s ashram. The intensity and quality of the light that the disciple radiates provide important clues as to whether he or she is ready for ashramic work.

Construction of the Antahkarana

Closely linked with emergence of the human soul is construction of the antahkarana, or “consciousness thread”, bridging the chasm between the fourth and third mental subplanes. The antahkarana, also built from chitta, is the ladder enabling the human soul to access the higher reaches of the mental plane. Torkum Saraydarian goes so far as to say: “In a sense the Antahkarana is the evolving human soul.”[Emphasis added] 13

With the upward expansion of consciousness the individual glimpses the beauty and joy of the higher realms. He or she also comes into contact with members of the Hierarchy and the angelic kingdom and stands in awe of the Will, Love, and Intelligence they express. In turn the individual may feel a need to reproduce these experiences on the lower planes through the creation of harmony, beauty, and value in everyday life. He or she may be inspired to create works of arts, make scientific discoveries, build an organisation, or embark on a life of service. Bathed in light and love from above, the personality radiates these qualities to the world.

The expansion of consciousness, made possible by construction of the antahkarana, does not mean that the individual becomes simultaneously aware on every mental subplane; rather it means that he or she can focus awareness at any desired level. Importantly, the individual can observe life at the personality level from a higher vantage point. Acquiring this new perspective inevitably leads to changes in values; the individual realises that the higher self is more real, more permanent, and of greater worth than the lower.

Not surprisingly, such reevaluation can cause conflict, as the lower self rebels against its loss of priority. But in time a sense of detachment develops, the thrall of the lower planes lessens, and conquest of maya, glamour, and illusion becomes a real possibility. The dark side of the personality —and again we see evidence of the human soul’s the form-building capability— is gradually eliminated.

On the other hand, the enlightened individual does not despise the lower nature, composed as it is of sentient lives with their own destiny:

  The aggregate of lives which form the sheaths or bodies… are intelligent units on the involutionary arc of evolution, working towards self-expression.” 14  

The lower vehicles have served well, and continue to serve as the habitat of the indwelling life. The disciple feels a new reverence for life in all the kingdoms and accepts responsibility to oversee their redemption; harmlessness becomes instinctual. At the same time there is a desire to purify the lower vehicles and make them more perfect forms to accommodate the higher consciousness.

Eventually, the antahkarana extends to the first mental subplane, producing seamless continuity of consciousness throughout all seven mental subplanes. Extension to the first mental subplane is a development of the greatest significance because it brings the disciple into contact with the mental permanent atom and the spiritual Triad.

Relationship with the Solar Angel

When the call of the solar Angel evokes a response, the personality can enter into dialogue with the Angel. This dialogue can occur at any time, but it is facilitated by meditation, and the individual is likely to be drawn instinctively to some kind of meditation routine. In the process, the individual’s belief and trust in the higher reality are reinforced, and the human soul is propelled to further development. Dialogue with the solar Angel should not be confused with the conversations people have with “guides”, which can lead to dependency and shirking of personal responsibility. The Angel is not concerned with personality affairs, but it can provide invaluable guidance on larger matters dealing with spiritual development and service activities.

As soon as the antahkarana reaches the third mental subplane, the human soul comes into direct contact with the solar Angel, and the two are drawn together in a union that has been characterised as a “mystic marriage”. Accounts of this sacred union go back far in history; for example, the Gnostic Gospel of Philip describes the supreme sacrament of the Bridal Chamber in which the lower and higher aspects of man are united. By way of explanation, Christ is made to say: “I came to make the things below like the things above, and the things outside like those inside. I came to unite them….” 15 The human soul accepts the solar Angel as its role model and mentor, and for several lifetimes they may function almost as a single entity.

The human soul provides a mechanism for continuity of consciousness from one incarnation to the next, supplementing the scant data on the permanent atoms. When this continuity is well established, the soul can start to learn from the solar Angel how to manage the host entity’s evolutionary development. However, the soul cannot take over this responsibility until it also gains access to karmic records and divine Purpose. This stage is not reached until construction of the antahkarana is completed and the disciple is approaching the fourth initiation.

Meanwhile, the human soul may be the solar Angel’s “spouse” in the mystic marriage, but it is also serving an apprenticeship under the Angel’s supervision, and success is not yet guaranteed. Choices might be made at the personality level, or resistance might develop within the soul itself, to delay the soul’s progress. In an extreme case of deliberate resistance, the solar Angel could sever its link with the apprentice soul, leaving the latter to roam the mental plane as an evil, self-conscious entity. Since the soul’s link with the Monad would also be severed, it would gradually lose vitality; but demise might be quite slow, and the evil soul could live for a long time. Nevertheless, the life of the Monad itself will eventually manifest once more, and “a fresh cycle of becoming will again be offered”. 16

However, if appropriate choices are made and the human soul responds positively to the solar Angel’s mentoring, the apprenticeship will be completed successfully. When the disciple reaches the fourth initiation, the solar Angel’s long assignment is finally over, and the Angel departs to pursue its own higher evolution:

  By the time the fourth initiation has been reached… the solar angel returns to his own place, having performed his function, and the solar lives seek their point of emanation. The life within the form mounts up then in triumph to the bosom of its “Father in Heaven….” 17  

The human soul is approaching the full expression of its being and presents itself to the Monad as the mediator between spirit and form—a form nature which, by then, has become a living expression of Light, Love, and Power.

Soul and Identity

Primitive man identified strongly with the tribe or clan, a vestige of the animal herd instinct. In primitive cultures, the collective identity was—and in those that survive still is—reinforced by stories, art, and rituals emphasizing the common heritage and mutual security against external threats. But over time, tribal consciousness weakened and was replaced by a growing sense of individual selfhood, leading eventually to the aggressive, self-centered individualism that has shaped modern history. This rugged individualism allowed man to develop a secure individual identity, and today the lack of secure identity is considered pathological.

Individualistic man might identify with the physical body—or possibly one of the other lower vehicles—or, at a later stage of evolution, with the personality that overshadows all three. But in each case identity is sought for in form; and, since the lower vehicles and personality pass away, identity built on this shaky foundation is confined to a single incarnation. As noted earlier, the personality is the mask that tells the world what character we are playing in the drama of life. When the play is over the mask is discarded, and the character is no more than a memory.

Emergence of the human soul provides an opportunity for identity to expand further. Even before the individual enjoys definite recall of previous lives, unconscious memories add richness to the sense of selfhood. And as recall improves “I” begin to recognise myself, not just as a single personality living for a few score years at one period in history, but as a mosaic of personalities living at different periods, contributing to and drawing experience from each of them. “I” am not just the character in one play but the actor who has portrayed many different characters in a whole series of plays. Since our performances’ résumés are all different, each of us is unique.

Throughout history many individuals have passed beyond separative individualism into group consciousness. Now, the process is accelerating, and group consciousness is manifesting among increasing numbers of people. Perhaps individualism has largely run its course, even at a racial level, and group consciousness will soon become the norm for humanity as a whole. This will allow human souls to unfold on a large scale. However, there is no conflict between the notion of unique identity and group consciousness. Indeed it is because of the uniqueness of its constituents, that group consciousness is so far removed from primitive herd or tribal consciousness. With the expansion of group consciousness, identity can break out of its separative prison “I”, become a cell in that planetary form-building centre which we call the fifth kingdom, freely and joyously contributing to the collective Life what I am and can do.

The transfer of identity from the personality to the human soul represents a tremendous leap in significance and power: from identifying with form, the individual can identify with that which builds forms. “I” now have a degree of control over my own evolution and perhaps the power to make significant changes in the world. One further step remains to be taken. When contact is established with the Monad, identity can expand to include the indwelling life—indeed all Life. “The disciple knows… that he is…Life Itself.” 18

Transfer of identity to the human soul is a natural one, but, in an intermediate phase, the individual may identify with the solar Angel, whom the Tibetan even describes as the “real Self”.19 Because of the close relationship between the human soul and the Angel, the individual may find it hard to distinguish them. But this relationship comes to an end at the fourth initiation, and with it the basis of identity. In the Tibetan’s words:

  Then comes the awful “moment in time”, when pendant in Space he [the disciple] discovers that he is not the Soul. What then is he? 20  

At that awful moment, the disciple is forced to realise that he or she is now alone—but alone as a mature human soul in full control of form existence.

Triune Soul

The animal soul, human soul, and solar Angel form a triplicity, calling to mind the Triune God; the human trinity of personality, soul, and Monad; and indeed the essential threeness pervading the whole of reality.

Elements of the soul triplicity are discussed in academic philosophy and psychology. For example, the Solar Angel and human soul can be compared to the two depictions of the soul proposed by classical philosophy. The solar Angel resembles the Platonic archetype —eternal, perfect, and unchanging— overshadowing its copy, the lower nature, which is still imperfect and in a state of becoming. Plato explains that “the soul… partakes of reason and harmony, and being made by the best of intellectual and everlasting natures, is the best of things created.” 21

The human soul resembles the Aristotelian soul that emerges from the lower nature, reaching ever upward but retaining strong ties with its roots. Thomas Aquinas, who was strongly influenced by Aristotle, asserted that the soul was “connaturally related to the body” and incapable of permanent existence apart from it. 22 Modern schools of philosophy and psychology —with the notable exception of transpersonal psychology— hesitate to discuss the soul, and, to the extent that they do, tend to project onto it the characteristics of the animal soul.

These various depictions of the soul all have merit, but they are partial depictions. In order to build a complete picture of the human constitution, we must consider all three elements of the soul triplicity, together with their mutual interactions.

The Tibetan states that “‘the animal soul’… corresponds to the Holy Ghost aspect in the human microcosmic trinity”, adding that this aspect puts man in touch with the phenomenal world. 23 It is the seat of emotion and the lower psychism which we share with the animal kingdom. 24 Interestingly, the Tibetan tells us that pain and suffering are only possible while we identify with the animal soul. 25 The animal soul is anchored in the solar plexus centre, whereas the human soul is anchored in the throat center and the solar Angel in the head centre. 26

The human soul emerges, as a “middle principle” between the solar Angel and animal soul, in a manner directly corresponding to the emergence of “soul” from the descent of spirit into matter.

  The soul is the perceiving entity produced through the union of Father-Spirit and Mother-Matter…It is that in man which makes him aware of his environment and his group, which enables him to live his life in the three worlds of his normal evolution as the onlooker, the perceiver, the actor. This it is which enables him eventually to discover that this soul in him is dual and that part of him responds to the animal soul and part of him recognises his divine soul. 27  

However, the human soul is not just the passive outcome of the interaction of spirit and matter; like all souls, it is the form-building agency that gives the host entity its unique characteristics. As the human soul gains strength, its form-building power also increases, and the human entity is propelled ever more rapidly toward its destiny.

The human soul gradually acquires coherence and permanence. Coherence gives the soul definite form, with a measure of autonomy and the ability to express self-consciousness and identity. Bearing in mind that the human soul corresponds, in the soul triplicity, to the second aspect of Deity, it is interesting to note that coherence is a second aspect quality. Permanence enables the human soul to provide continuity of consciousness and identity from one incarnation to the next.

Saraydarian suggests that the human soul only acquires definite form at the first initiation. He explains: “It is at the time of the operation of the Rod of Initiation by Christ that the birth of the human soul takes place. That is why the first initiation is called ‘the birth.’” 28 By implication, the paths of aspiration and discipleship correspond to the soul’s gestation period, and the first initiation is the critical event in the soul’s emergence.

At the fourth initiation two momentous events occur in the entity’s evolution. As noted, the solar Angel departs; but also the lower nature is discarded, and the animal sentience falls below the threshold of awareness. The Tibetan explains:

  The solar angel hitherto contacted has withdrawn himself, and the form through which he functioned (the egoic or causal body) has gone, and naught is left but love-wisdom and that dynamic will which is the prime characteristic of Spirit. The lower self has served the purposes of the Ego, and has been discarded; the Ego likewise has served the purposes of the Monad, and is no longer required, and the initiate stands free of both, fully liberated and able to contact the Monad, as earlier he learned to contact the Ego. 29  

As a result, the triune soul is resolved into a unity: the exalted human soul. The latter continues its form-building function, but the forms serve a new role:

  Then [the individual] builds for himself a form such as he desires,—a new form that is no longer subject to shattering, but suffices for his need, to be discarded or used as occasion warrants. 30  

From then on, only one further step, the fifth initiation, remains before the entity has attained the goal of life on this planet. This final step may take only a few incarnations, perhaps only one.

Concluding Remarks

At every level of creation, “soul” is brought into being by the descent of spirit into matter and builds forms to express their mutual interaction. Soul is the “attractive energy, coherency, sentiency, aliveness, awareness or consciousness… the quality which every form manifests”. 31 Upon individualisation, each member of the human race was endowed with a human soul. For long eons it existed as no more than a seed awaiting germination and growth into a functioning, self-conscious entity; but in due course the human soul unfolds as a middle principle between the overshadowing solar Angel and the vestigial animal soul to complete the soul triplicity.

The human soul unfolds as a result of two factors: a shift in the individual’s priorities toward a higher reality and group consciousness, and the mentoring of the solar Angel. The soul develops a close relationship with the solar Angel that lasts until the Angel’s departure at the fourth initiation. The soul triplicity is resolved into Unity, and the human soul reigns supreme, a synthesised Whole serving as the sole mediator between the Monad and the world of forms.

Self-consciousness is closely linked to identity: the sense of selfhood, or the notion of “who we are”. Throughout history, humankind has sought a secure basis for identity and has explored various possibilities, including the tribe, the physical body, and the personality, but none of them offered reassuring permanence. Finally, the individual can identify with the ultimate, and lasting, expression of human consciousness: the human soul. However, it is not enough to accept the human soul as an intellectual construct; we must also experience it, embrace it, become it, and live its life.

There is a tendency to think that the personality is much more interesting than the soul—that souls are somehow all alike, like birds on an overhead wire. But nothing could be further from the truth; the human soul reflects the unique experience of innumerable lifetimes and the capabilities and interests gained from them. The soul is a “persona”, but instead of concealing who we really are, it reveals who we have become. Moreover, the human soul is full of life: a vibrant life immensely richer than that of personality existence. To discover that we are this intriguing, colourful character is a major realisation and a great step forward in human evolution.

Corresponding, as it does, to the second Aspect of Deity, the human soul is not just a centre of consciousness but also a center of Love and Wisdom. As the Tibetan points out:

  Love…is the soul of all things or of all forms, beginning with the anima mundi and reaching its highest point of expression in the human soul.…32  

As the human soul unfolds in more and more individuals, the Christ consciousness will be anchored ever-more firmly in the fabric of the planet. The collective effect will be powerful and far-reaching, moving large sections of humanity into the Kingdom of Souls, of which “the Hierarchy is the dynamic and living nucleus”. 32 We look forward, not to annihilation of individuality or submersion in a sea of sameness, but to emergence as magnificent units of consciousness sharing and serving joyously with equally magnificent units in this world of souls. The fifth kingdom, to use sociologist Lewis Mumford’s terms, is not a “unity of suppression” but a “unity of inclusion”. 34 And from there, ever-more perfect forms can be built to support the continued evolution of the human life-wave. From the centre which we call the race of men, the Plan of Love and Light can indeed work out.

1. Alice A. Bailey. A Treatise on White Magic, p. 35.
2. Alice A. Bailey. Esoteric Astrology, p. 295.
3. A Treatise on White Magic, p. 35.
4. Ibid., p. 33.
5. Alice A. Bailey. The Light of the Soul, p. 378.
6. John Nash. “ The Solar Angel.” The Beacon, July/August 2000.
7. The Light of the Soul, p. 306.
8. Alice A. Bailey. A Treatise on Cosmic Fire, p. 69.
9. Thomas Moore. Care of the Soul. Harper, 1992, p. xvi.
10. Kahlil Gibran. Mirrors of the Soul. Philosophical Library, 1965, foreword.
11. Alice A. Bailey. Esoteric Psychology, Vol. II, p. 125.
12. Alice A. Bailey. Discipleship in the New Age, Vol. II, p. 215.
13. Torkum Saraydarian. The Solar Angel. Saraydarian Institute, 1990, p. 153.
14. The Light of the Soul, p. 12.
15. Gospel of Philip. (Transl.: Wesley W. Isenberg)
16. The Light of the Soul, p. 391.
17. Alice A. Bailey. Initiation, Human and Solar, p. 137.
18. The Light of the Soul, p. 12.
19. Alice A. Bailey. Discipleship in the New Age, Vol. I, p. 390
20. Alice A. Bailey. The Rays and the Initiations, p. 107.
21. Plato. Timeus. (Trans.: Benjamin Jowett)
22. Thomas Aquinas. De Anima and De Spiritualibus Creatures. Disputations.
23. Alice A. Bailey. The Externalization of the Hierarchy, p. 8.
24. The Light of the Soul, pp. 308, 378.
25. Alice A. Bailey. Esoteric Healing, p. 346.
26. The Externalisation of the Hierarchy, p. 92.
27. A Treatise on White Magic, p. 37.
28. Torkum Saraydarian, op. cit., p. 144.
29. The Light of the Soul, p. 117.
30. A Treatise on White Magic, p. 265.
31. Ibid, p. 33.
32. Alice A. Bailey. Telepathy and the Etheric Vehicle, p. 130.
33. Alice A. Bailey. Destiny of the Nations, p. 117.
34. Lewis Mumford. The Culture of Cities. Harcourt Brace, 1938, pp. 300-315.