Pinned What Is Theosophy?

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    • What Is Theosophy?

      The reader must take into consideration that the original Theosophical Society, to which H.P. Blavatsky refers in this article, ceased to exist a few years after Blavatsky’s death in 1891, when Annie Besant provoked its division after abandoning ethics and the true esoteric philosophy. Today the theosophical movement has a considerable diversity from the organizational point of view. There are also several schools of theosophical thought. The Independent Lodge of Theosophists, ILT, was founded on 14 September 2016 and tries to work according to the original teachings of theosophy, which do not include the dead-letter approach of mere repetition. The small ILT says “The Mahatma Letters” and “The Letters from the Masters of the Wisdom” are among the most important works in the esoteric literature of all time, for they provide students with a key to study and understand universal literature.

      What is Theosophy?
      This question has been so often asked, and misconception so widely prevails, that the editors of a journal devoted to an exposition of the world’s Theosophy would be remiss were its first number issued without coming to a full understanding with their readers. But our heading involves two further queries: What is the Theosophical Society; and what are the Theosophists? To each an answer will be given.
      Stay soft. It looks beautiful on you.
    • In the early days of the Theosophical Movement in the United States, Mr. Judge was in intimate contact with American students, with whom he maintained a large correspondence. Letters That Have Helped Me is a compilation of his counsels. Mr. Judge’s wise and gentle words are a revelation of his understanding of the subtleties of human nature, and of the great depth and strength of heart he possessed as a teacher and a friend.
      Part II is comprised of letters to students and Theosophical groups, and various extracts. In this edition of Letters That Have Helped Me, issued 50 years after the passing of Mr. Judge, a third section presents additional material, including a group of allegorical stories contributed by Mr. Judge to the Path.

      Download Letters That Have Helped Me (PDF) >>
      Stay soft. It looks beautiful on you.
    • The Point and the Circle. The Equilibrium Between Open-Mindedness and One-Pointedness

      Superficial minds look for “new” topics. Deeper souls dwell on those that are important. Theosophy is true, or points to truth; pseudo-esotericism is “brilliant” and, to some, even “fascinating”.
      One might pose therefore these questions:
      “What is the difference between open-mindedness – and mental dispersion? Or between a broad mental horizon, and mere absence of a stable focus in consciousness?”

      And, on the other hand:
      “How can one see the difference between concentration and mere attachment to routine, between perseverance and lack of flexibility – or even stubbornness?”
      It all seems to depend on the level of consciousness, on the principles involved.

      In theosophy, open-mindedness and concentration must be combined. They are both needed, for they are two inseparable functions of the higher Self.
      In one’s individual world, the mental horizon must be broad enough to constitute a meeting point between the sky and the earth, the human and the divine, the finite and the infinite. Such a contrast allows us to have an accurate vision. It constitutes the perfect circle. It is essentially impersonal.

      On the other hand, the main focus in one’s consciousness corresponds to the point in the center of the abstract circle. Such a point implicitly contains the circle. It is the Sun in its system. It relates to aim and to action. It is the source of Will.[1] It is the Observer, and also the warrior in terms of the classical work “Light on the Path”. From the interaction between the point and the circle, the whirling wheel of life emerges, and from it life is inspired.
      How to combine then open-mindedness with one-pointedness? It is in Buddhi-Manas, the spiritual mind, or in a manasic (mental) area existing under the direct influence of Buddhi-Manas, that one better conciliates and combines a wide vision of life with a firm, stable purpose in action. One way to do that is to dwell on universal principles and ideas. The great truths of all time provide us both an unlimited horizon and a stable purpose. This leads to true contemplation exercised across night and day, in sleep and in awakening hours.

      Argentinian writer Jorge Luis Borges, who some consider to have been “too big a writer to get a Nobel Prize in Literature”, [2] lived in this sphere.
      His life and his writing process were a single and permanent meditation. In the Introduction to the University of Texas Press edition of his book “Other Inquisitions (1937-1952)”, one can read:
      “Borges’ entire work, filled with recurring variants of the same interlocking themes, is (….) a repeated approximation of archetypes…” (p. xiii).
      More than a few theosophists have followed the same path.

      They live in a 24 hours meditative dimension which both inspires and surrounds every aspect of their life. Human factors like imperfection and suffering are fully present. At the same time, these aspects of existence are transcended, as in a paradox. For they are situated and find their meaning in a much broader context: the unlimited, unfathomable line leading to the everlasting circle of unspeakable bliss.

      [1] We do not mention here the concept of Pascal’s circle, nor the central importance of the point-and-circle interaction in the cosmogony of theosophical philosophy. There is no need for that reference. It goes without saying.
      [2] The Nobel Prize in literature usually aims at revealing new authors, rather than at making homage to well-known thinkers.
      In September 2016, after a careful analysis of the state of the esoteric movement worldwide, a group of students decided to form the Independent Lodge of Theosophists, whose priorities include the building of a better future in the different dimensions of life.

      E-Theosophy e-group offers a regular study of the classic, intercultural theosophy taught by Helena P. Blavatsky (photo).
      Stay soft. It looks beautiful on you.
    • A Few Memories of Anita Atkins

      Publicado em 25/03/2018 por Emanuel Machado
      The Author Who Wrote Under the Pen Name of Sylvia Cranston
      Dara Eklund

      I first met Anita Atkins in New York, at the Centennial of the Theosophical Society on November 17, 1975. Boris de Zirkoff, a key speaker at the Convention, introduced Anita to me, along with Joseph Pope, co-author of her earlier books on Reincarnation.

      Under the pen names Joseph Head and S.L. (later Sylvia) Cranston, they collaborated on several titles. We met in the lounge, where I was struck by Anita’s poised and quiet dignity. A New York U.L.T. member, she never pushed herself forward, but in her own non-partisan way encouraged all genuine Theosophical efforts.

      Boris had shared numerous resources with Anita in his process of compiling and editing the “Blavatsky Collected Writings” series; she likewise shared her archival findings with him. In time, Anita was instrumental in opening up an archive of H.P.B.’s Letters which she had the Harvard University Andover Archivist send to me after Boris passing. She realized he would have wished it to become part of the Collected Letters series in the future.
      As our correspondence grew over the years, Anita became very supportive of my efforts to compile a chronological sequence of William Quan Judge’s writings. She helped verify dates for introductory notes and even sent me several rare photographs of Judge, which appeared in the third volume of Echoes of the Orient (Point Loma Pubs. 1987).
      In the Spring of 1978, she stayed with us while visiting California for an interview about her books on reincarnation with Tom Snyder of “The Tomorrow Show”. I remember her delight on a road trip through the wildflowers and Joshua trees in the high desert areas north of Los Angeles. She and her assistant, Caren Elin, also had several visits with Boris de Zirkoff, before he died on March 4th, 1981.
      Originally Joy Mills and I had hoped Anita might cooperate in completing the still unedited H.P.B. Letters which Boris de Zirkoff had willed to the T.S. of America (Wheaton) along with the remainder of his unpublished H.P.B. manuscripts, and archives. However, failing health plus a commitment to focus on her H.P.B. biography, caused her to relinquish the project. Later Joy, Anita and I responded to John Cooper’s interest in taking on the work which he proceeded with until his unexpected death on May 12, 1998 at the University of Sydney.

      Our closest contact with Anita was during the proofreading of “The Extraordinary Life and Influence of Helena Blavatsky, Founder of the Modern Theosophical Movement”, which came out in hardcover in 1993. Bob Atkins, Anita’s brother, and Caren Elin (her friend from New York U.L.T. days) began to assist in the arrangements, due to Anita’s failing health. Caren also saw into press a 2nd, as well as a more recent (1994) 3rd edition in paperback. “Reincarnation: the Phoenix Fire Mystery” came out in 1977 ( N.Y. Crown); published subsequently in paperback by Pasadena T.S. press (TUP) in 1994. With joint author, Carey Williams, Anita’s title “Reincarnation: a New Horizon in Science, Religion, and Society” came out in 1993 (Theosophical University Press, Pasadena, California).

      About this time Bob Atkins formed Path Publishing Company to help keep Anita’s titles in print. Bob Atkins also funded full-sized advertisements in the New York Times on H.P.B. and Anita’s works. Anita had developed Parkinson’s disease, although maintaining her clear thinking for a number of years. During these busy years of re-issues, Caren arranged to have Anita transferred to a very lovely nursing home in Santa Barbara, where she could help see to her proper care. During those last years we saw Anita there several times before her passing on June 20, 2000. She always seemed amiable and cheerful despite being in a wheelchair. Caren says she died peacefully, without much pain. A worthy soul to whom the world is indebted for the first full-scale, well-researched biography of Helena Petrovna Blavatsky.
      Stay soft. It looks beautiful on you.
    • The one characteristic of LIFE is that it unfolds. Ceaseless is that process. Consciousness reaches awareness of itself and attains self-consciousness in the human kingdom. From the state of self-consciousness man evolves into a Self-Conscious Being, the Adept retaining his individuality, untrammeled by the overpowering influence of Living Nature which produces sleep, death, pralaya. Within the conscious being are all powers of the whole of Nature. The Adept develops those latent powers by the power of his will; he subdues Nature by the self-same process which she uses to put us to sleep or to kill us, to dissolve one planet or myriads of stellar universes. Thus he attains immortality called Nirvana – the condition of profound awareness of one’s own existence, not apart from but as the whole of Nature.

      The one and only kingdom of Nature which is capable of perceiving and understanding the ceaseless perpetual motion of Nature’s Will is the human kingdom. In it consciousness has gained senses keen enough to observe her, intelligence necessary to understand her and compassion essential to master her. When man abrogates the use of these he runs the risk of ceasing to be man. Having gained the perception of their self-conscious state and the possibility of retaining it, daring souls enter upon the great adventure of conquering Nature. Invading her secret recesses, persevering in his quest, man succeeds in wresting from the deathless Mother her mighty magic and attains Mastery even over her by serving her.

      The Lodge of Adepts and aspirants to its membership are thus but natural products of evolution. In full knowledge the Lodge cooperates with Nature, its main task to enlighten the heart of every man. Wherever and whenever the grinding mill of evolution begets a living-form ready to be lighted up by the Fire of the Wisdom, there and then the Brothers of the Lodge are present in action. On our earth, the Lodge began its active operation some 18 million years ago. By the process described in the Secret Doctrine. It lighted up the living-forms of the human kingdom with the Light of Manas. The early frustrations of its noble efforts and the vicissitudes which followed when early humanities disregarded its guidance and directions are also narrated. It is all a matter of Record as to how the seeds of White and Black Magic were sown and how lying latent for some time they sprouted in the early period of our fifth race. The forces of Buddhic-Altruism and kamic-selfishness have fought each other in cycle after cycle, and eventful human history is but a record of that great struggle – even now in progress.
      In every age Theosophists are the instruments of the Lodge for Its continuous task of lighting up the Manas of the race in ever increasing measure. They are able to do this because they have kept their own heart-fires burning, feeding them with the fuel of study, practice and service. Theosophists (not members of any particular organization) from the front ranks of the race; thence the Lodge derives its new Members. The stage in the very long trail of evolution between men and Super-Men, between slaves and Masters of Nature, is that of Discipleship, while the Lodge may be said to be composed of two classes – Gurus and Chelas, both of varying degrees. Likewise the work of the Lodge falls into two divisions – (1) that of fecundating the mind of the race, or mass movement; and (2) the gaining new adherents and chelas to be trained as future members of the Lodge, or work with individuals. This work goes on in every cycle, and the existence of the Lodge and the Path to It are truths which every civilization has been taught.

      The qualifications and requirements, the rules of life and conduct, however differently arranged, enumerated, or explained, are the same. The exigencies of cycles are calculated by the Lodge. Rearrangements, recodification, re-formations of Teachings and Rules are the response to human aspirations, endeavors and achievements. Thus in historic times Gautama, the man who became Buddha, the Enlightened, was the reformer and codifier of the occult system; once again Sang-Ko-Pa [1] of Kokonor, in the fourteenth century, became the reformer of esoteric as well as of vulgar Lamaism. Among his commandments there is one that enjoins Those concerned to make an attempt to enlighten the world, including the “white barbarians” every century, at a certain specified period of the cycle. Ever since the fourteenth, every century has seen the dual attempt to change the manas of Western humanity and to draw from within its ranks those ready, however few, for the Path of Discipleship leading to Emancipation-Enlightenment. The attempts of earlier centuries were private, though their influence and the mark they have left behind are traceable by any intuitive student of history; but in pursuance of the fiat of this Tibetan World-Reformer, the Theosophic Movement of our era, fulfilling the requirement of the cyclic law, was launched on the stormy ocean of publicity. Time had come and the Benediction of the Chiefs sent H.P.B. to our world.

      By 1888, she had already accomplished the task of giving a death-blow to scientific materialism as well as to religious supernaturalism, to doubt and superstition alike. Man’s mind, was opened to enquiry of the hidden – the force behind form, the spirit behind matter. Her insistent proclamation about Living Wise Men whose knowledge transcended that of Science; whose philanthropy was rooted not in feeling but in knowledge; who had emancipated Themselves from the five fetters of sex, caste, creed, nation, race, by that knowledge; whose compassion led Them to impart it to all who were ready to receive it by a proper compliance with the rules of Their Science: all this had produced in the world and especially in the Theosophic Movement individuals fired by the intense desire to obtain that knowledge and know its Masters. Also it had produced false claimants, charlatans, adventurers eager to supply the demand her efforts had created. The time had come to organize into a band all those who were awakened.

      H.P.B. produced phenomena, talked about the Masters and the Lodge, trained individuals into Chelaship and proclaimed the fact of such training to the world, – all with a purpose. One of the prime objects of her mission was to open up communication between the world of men and that of Masters, and to create a suitable Embassy in the former domain through which the work of the Lodge could be carried on there.
      Chelaship as a process of unfoldment belongs to the metaphysical world. Chelas and chelaship belong to the world of the occult, wherein speech is silent, vision clear and action free of fetters. H.P.B.’s work was to create an organism in which human egos would be drawn by a natural attraction to its principles and rules and undertake the heavy labor of self-purification, self-education and self-attainment. This organism was meant to lead the successful students to direct chelaship under the great Gurus – the position, condition, rules and pledges whereof have always remained esoteric and always will. The efforts of the Lodge in the preceding centuries had succeeded in transforming the race-mind to such an extent that now, i.e., in 1888, there were sufficient people ready to receive a plan and programme of life which, carried out, would bring them to the Occult World.

      The creation of such an organism had been intended from the beginning. H.P.B. clearly refers to it in that epoch-marking article “Chelas and Lay-Chelas” (Theosophist-Supplement, July, 1883) in which she speaks of how and why “the rules of Chela Selection have become slightly relaxed in one respect.” That memorable pronouncement contains everything in plasmic-condition: the rules, regulations, difficulties, operations of and about Chelaship. This was followed in June, 1884, by “Are Chelas Mediums?” which told what chelas are not; what they are, as also the Masters, come next in sequence in July and October of the same year.

      All this was meant for those individuals who were aspiring and striving for Chelaship; they were not yet linked together in a formal way. The trials, failures and successes of neophytes followed and precipitated events which are matters of record in the Theosophical Movement. The churning of the ocean of discipleship led H.P.B. to write another epoch-making article – “The Theosophical Mahatmas” in The Path for December, 1886, wherein once again she traced the land-marks of the Ancient Path and the Narrow Way. Three other contributions from her sure pen remain to be cited. Having written for those concerned “Theosophical Mahatmas,” she waited for a year and on the eve of the formation of the organism for lay-chelas in 1888 she wrote in Lucifer “Practical Occultism” in April, “Occultism vs. the Occult Arts,” in May and “Lodges of Magic,” in October. This was followed by what may be called a warning-article to the newly formed E.S.T. – “Is Theosophy a Religion?” If her earlier articles were hints, suggestions, advice and instructions to individuals aspiring to be esotericists, the last named was to the corporate E.S.T.; the danger of making Theosophy a cult would be the natural temptation of an organized band of would-be esotericists.
      In the Western world, not even in the days of Pythagoras, had the effort been made to draw candidates for discipleship from the ranks of the public. Add to this the fact that the planet of occultism had been under obscuration since the first century of our era; that the persecution of knowledge had produced the reaction of disbelief in spiritual concepts of life – disbelief, the arrogant child of the fanatic mother blind-belief; that the methods of materialistic science arose out of the reversal of everything pertaining to soul-science that the orthodox creeds of the west in rejecting Gnosis brought to birth Agnosticism – and the reader will see what H.P.B. had to deal with.

      But she had proved exoteric religions to be in the wrong; modern science to be inexact, with no moral principles to guide man’s life; spiritualism to be devoid of philosophy. She had awakened the questioning mind and the yearning heart of many hundreds. She could not let these return to the churches or the temples, go stargazing in observatories or vivisecting in laboratories, or to astral grave-yards called séance-rooms; they had to be shown the upward way.

      From the very beginning her philanthropic mission was misunderstood – the philanthropic basis of her phenomena; the philanthropic basis of her philosophy; the philanthropic basis of the Path to her Masters which she showed as ready for treading. Men’s minds were bent on miracle-working, on intellectualism and personal growth. Western arrogance pooh-poohed the idea of tests and trials of chelaship; eastern traditional devotion relied on the good-weal of the Gurus to lift drowning souls from the ocean of samsara. What is there which I cannot do for myself? – said the former; what is there which a Mahatma cannot do for me? – said the latter. Neither heard the cry of H.P.B. and the Lodge – Who will sacrifice for the poor orphan humanity?

      Brotherhood and Service are the roots of the tree of Chelaship – not the gaining of powers or self-growth or emancipation: these are its flowers and fruits. Each Chela is as one newly born; the gaining of psychic and spiritual strength takes time; but quick results were looked for and the travails of birth and the growing pains were not given due consideration.
      H.P.B. reiterated the ancient teaching about Chelaship: the life of chelaship begins with a resolute pledge-vow; then comes the period of probation and test; and finally direct chelaship, accepted chelaship, the end of which in its turn is Initiation.
      What brings a man to the approach of the Sacred Path? The whisperings of Buddhi listened to by Manas. If we encourage them they will not fade away like the dissolving mirage in the Shamo desert, but grow stronger and stronger until one’s whole life becomes the expression and outward proof of the divine motive within. What brings a man to the notice of the Holy Ones? Like the light in the sombre valley seen by the mountaineer from his peaks every bright thought in mortal mind sparkles and attracts the attention of the Brothers of the Great Lodge. Thus They discover Their natural allies in the shadow-world of mortals. It is Their Law to approach every one if there be in him but the feeblest glimmer of the true Wisdom-Light.

      “Every step made by one in our direction will force us to make one toward him”[2], said a Master. When the inner development has gone far enough to bring to birth in the privacy of one’s heart the Desire to Serve and therefore the Will to Know how service can be rendered, the first step is taken. Each man, being immortal and divine in his inner nature, arrives at such a stage in the progress of time. The good in him impels him to be less selfish, to practice personal sacrifices in daily living. Between a good man and a spiritual one there is a gulf, the result of self-energizing intelligence.

      The Path of Chelaship is the path of intelligent service of human souls; but intelligent or otherwise the motive of service, altruism at the cost of personal sacrifices, is the ensouling power. Men possessing the courage of their convictions and serving the Truth they feel are more apt to enter the communion of Chelaship than those who dare not pursue their convictions so that action ensues. “He who damns himself in his own estimation and agreeably to the recognized and current code of honour to save a worthy cause may some day find out that he has reached thereby his loftiest aspirations.” Such self-sacrificing action rooted in altruistic motive purifies the man of his ignorance and brings him the necessary knowledge. The service of truth thus acquired by the process of life is to be rendered by the Individual life itself.
      Aspirants to Chelaship are candidates for living the ordinary life in an extraordinary way – by the use of a code of rules of conduct which is based on a profound realization of the workings of the laws of nature. These preliminary requirements H.P.B. reiterated for the candidates of the first decade; but the large majority regarded her advice and warning as “grandmother’s sermons.” They did not see the significance of “Time enough to discuss the terms of Chelaship when the aspirant has digested what has already been given out, and mastered his most palpable vices and weakness;” or “there are rules of conduct controlling chelas which cannot be departed from in the slightest degree;” they did not take the statements seriously.

      If the altruistic and philanthropic basis of chelaship was not appreciated, the psychological effects of obtaining occult knowledge were likewise disregarded when H.P.B. pointed them out. One set of students wanted to study Occultism as they would study one of the modern sciences – ask, get properly tabulated answers, and proceed with experimentation. Moral requirements were somewhat of a novelty to them – a physicist need not possess a character of moral excellence, why a super-physicist? Such was the line of reasoning. Observation of heavenly bodies which struck awe to the brains of the astronomer did not precipitate any “tests”; why should contact with Stars of the Occult Magnitude? Another set of students could not fathom why earnest devotion alone was not sufficient to make the mind duly receptive and ready to absorb every species of esoteric doctrine. “As the shower cannot fructify the rock, so the occult teaching has no effect upon the unreceptive mind; and as the water develops the heat of caustic lime so does the teaching bring into fierce action every unsuspected potentiality latent in him.” This puzzled and annoyed them.

      H.P.B. defined what lay-chelaship meant in “Chelas and Lay-Chelas.” The knowledge about the Ancient Path and its requirements were clearly portrayed by her and to the lay-aspirants she gave the broadest kind of a hint:
      “A Lay Chela is but a man of the world who affirms his desire to become wise in spiritual things. Virtually, every member of the Theosophical Society who subscribes to the second of our three ‘Declared Objects’ is such; for though not of the number of true Chelas, he has yet the possibility of becoming one, for he has stepped across the boundary-line which separated him from the Mahatmas, and has brought himself, as it were, under their notice.”

      Why the second of the three declared objects? The conditions for the treading of the old, old way were enumerated and explained in ancient lore; further, when an individual through study of ancient traditional presentations showed the discrimination of picking the gems of Theosophy therein, he developed within himself the conviction that there does exist an immemorial Wisdom-Religion, the source and fountain head of all knowledge. Many students do not perceive the import of H.P.B.’s prolonged and trying wanderings. Why did she roam the wide earth, wild in parts, seeking knowledge after she met the “Master of her dreams” in London in 1851? Was she sent to gain for her Russian brain the necessary conviction that a universal science of soul-growth was in existence?
      Again, the principle of self-energization was not grasped. Having come to recognize the existence of the Sacred Science and its Wise Masters, remains for the student the effort to realize in his own life those intellectual deductions. Says the Master:
      “To accept any man as a chela does not depend on my personal will. It can only be the result of one’s personal merit and exertions in that direction. Force any one of the ‘Masters’ you may happen to choose; do good works in his name and for the love of mankind; be pure and resolute in the path of righteousness (as laid out in our rules); be honest and unselfish; forget your self but to remember the good of other people – and you will have forced that ‘Master’ to accept you.” [3]

      A man puts himself on the probationary path and enters the circle of lay-chelaship; his own Higher Self becomes his own vital tester.
      “You ask me, ‘What rules I must observe during this time of probation, and how soon I might venture to hope that it could begin?’ I answer: You have the making of your own future in your own hands, and every day you may be weaving its woof. If I were to demand that you should do one thing or the other, instead of simply advising, I would be responsible for every effect that might flow from the step, and you acquire but a secondary merit. Think, and you will see that this is true. So cast the lot yourself into the lap of Justice, never fearing but that its response will be absolutely true. Chelaship is an educational as well as a probationary stage, and the chela alone can determine whether it shall end in adeptship or failure. Chelas, from a mistaken idea of our system, too often watch and wait for orders, wasting precious time which should be taken up with personal effort. Our cause needs missionaries, devotees, agents, even martyrs, perhaps. But it cannot demand of any man to make himself either.” [4]

      This is the first, the individualistic step. The Theosophical Movement of H.P.B. dealt with individuals during the first septenary cycle; then came the semi-esoteric group arrangement during the second cycle. Through much failure but also some success, the necessary experience accumulated and gathering force precipitated into being the E.S.T. in 1888. The candidate-members were distinctly told that its purpose was to prepare and fit the student for the study of Practical Occultism of the Kingly Science or Raja Yoga. Students in their efforts towards spiritual culture require that help which solidarity in the ranks can alone give them the right to ask – therefore they were called upon to practice brotherhood. H.P.B. assisted by Mr. Judge provided the necessary rules of daily living; admission by the taking of a Pledge aiming at self-improvement and service entitled the members to receive Instructions from H.P.B. as the mouth-piece of the Masters, and out of her heart’s generosity she shouldered the grave responsibility of teaching the esoteric principles. Very quickly the immutable law in the domain of the occult demonstrated itself.

      “The mass of human sin and frailty is distributed throughout the life of man who is content to remain an average mortal. It is gathered in and centred, so to say, within one period of the life of a chela – the period of probation. That, which is generally accumulating to find its legitimate issue only in the next rebirth of an ordinary man, is quickened and fanned into existence in the chela – especially in the presumptuous and selfish candidate who rushes in without having calculated his forces.” [5]

      The Pledge taken and repeated in the name of the Higher Self draws forth the dormant qualities. Latent vice begets active sins: latent virtue active sacrifices. Chelaship is not a matter of years but of lives. Mistakes made and blunders committed themselves become avenues for purification and growth. “If you would recover the lost ground do two things: make the amplest, most complete reparation and to the good of mankind devote your energies. Try to fill each day’s measure with pure thoughts, wise words, kindly deeds.” [6] “Like the ‘true man’ of Carlyle, who is not to be seduced by ease, ‘difficulty, abnegation, martyrdom, death are the allurements that act’ during the hours of trial on the heart of a true chela.”

      Among her several important missions H.P.B. had this task of testing the ranks of the students of the occult, of leading them on to the Path of Probation, of leaving them there armed with weapons to fight their own lower natures which the Path and Pledge brought fiercely to the front; and then – wait to welcome the triumphant souls at the Golden Gate of the Sacred City.
      Her recorded philosophy and instructions are as alive and inspiring today as ever; the Path as inviting and as full of pit-falls as ever; exist the same obstacles to be removed by the same methods for this generation as the preceding ones.

      [1] Sang-Ko-Pa; a name also spelled as Tsong-kha-pa.
      [2] “The Mahatma Letters”, TUP, Pasadena, California, Letter LXV, p. 366.
      [3] “Letters From the Masters of the Wisdom”, TPH, Adyar, 1973, first series, see Letter 7, p. 28.
      [4] “Letters From the Masters of the Wisdom”, TPH, Adyar, 1973, first series, see Letter 7, pp. 29-30.
      [5] “The Mahatma Letters”, TUP, Pasadena, California, Letter LXIV, pp. 359-360.
      [6] “Letters From the Masters of the Wisdom”, TPH, Adyar, 1973, first series, see Letter 24, p. 59.
      Stay soft. It looks beautiful on you.
    • "Всеки, който е готов винаги да пожертва собствените си удоволствия в полза на другите, и всеки, който обича Истината, Добротата и Мъдростта заради самите тях, а не заради облагите, които може да извлече от тях - е теософ."
      Е. П. Б.
      Stay soft. It looks beautiful on you.
    • If we knew ourselves we would know our own past, and have no need to be taught and retaught the Way, the Truth, and the Life. If we knew ourselves we would know our own future, and would have no need of guidance, would have no religion, no science, no philosophy, for we would be ourselves the embodiment of Perfection – Self-knowledge. What distinguishes Man from all the beings below the human? Self-consciousness. And what distinguishes the Masters of Wisdom from ourselves? Self-knowledge.
      (John Garrigues)

      From the article "The Key to Self-Knowledge":

      Stay soft. It looks beautiful on you.
    • How the Septenary Scale of States of Mind is Reflected in Our Hearts?

      Life has many a paradoxical aspect. In the first decades of the 20th century, while the main leaders of the Adyar Theosophical Society were dedicated to ritualistic farces and pseudo-clairvoyant nonsense, C. Jinarajadasa divided his time between supporting the delusions of his day and doing an active, serious research regarding the original teachings of theosophy.
      His numerous editorial contributions to the authentic literature – and to the true history of the theosophical effort – include the publication of unique documents by H.P.B. like “The Original Programme”, or “Why I Do Not Return to India”, and the 1900 Letter of a Master to A. Besant (of which he did not destroy the original copy, whose text was later published verbatim).

      The following article is one more example of Mr. C. Jinarajadasa’s help to real esoteric philosophy. It consists of an unfinished draft by H.P.B., and was first published by C. J. in “The Theosophist”, Adyar, August 1925, pp. 632-634. It was later included in the “Collected Writings” of H.P. Blavatsky, TPH, Volume XIII, pp. 288-289.

      In theosophical parlance, one can say that there is a buddhic sense of things. In the present article H. P. Blavatsky says that “every one of the five [physical] recognized senses was primarily a mental sense”. H.P.B. is not alone in that. Irish-Scottish philosopher Francis Hutcheson (1694-1747) investigated thehigher senses in human consciousness. Hutcheson wrote about the moral sense present in human consciousness, and the sense of an ethical beauty. The idea belongs to the theosophy of all time and to the platonic tradition.
      (Carlos Cardoso Aveline)

      Consciousness and Self-Consciousness
      Helena P. Blavatsky

      The cycle of consciousness. It is argued that there cannot be more than one object of perception at a time before the soul because soul is a unit. Occultism teaches that simultaneously our conscious[ness] could receive no less than seven distinct impressions, and even pass them into memory.
      This can be proved by striking at the same time seven keys of the scale of an instrument – say a piano. The 7 sounds will reach consciousness simultaneously; though the untrained consciousness may not be capable of registering them the first second, their prolonged vibrations will strike the ear in 7 distinct sounds one higher than the other in its pitch. All depends on training and attention. Thus the transference of a sensation from any organ to consciousness is almost instantaneous if your attention is fixed upon it; but if any noise distracts your attention it will take a number of seconds before it reaches consciousness.

      The Occultist should train himself to receive and transmit along the line of the seven scales of his consciousness every impression or impressions simultaneously. He who reduces the intervals of physical time the most, has made the most progress.
      The names and order of the 7 scales are:
      1. Sense-perception;
      2. Self-perception (or apperception);
      3. Psychic apperception – which carries it to
      4. Vital perception.

      These are the four lower scales and belong to the psychophysical man. The[n] come

      5. Manasic discernment;
      6. Will perception and
      7. Spiritual conscious apperception.

      The special organ of consciousness is of course the brain, and is located in the aura of the pineal gland in the living man. During the process of mind or thought manifesting to consciousness, constant vibrations of light take place. If one could see clairvoyantly in the brain of a living man one could almost count (see with the eye) the seven shades of the successive scales of light, from the dullest to the brightest.
      What consciousness is can never be defined psychologically. We can analyse and classify its work and effects – we cannot define it, unless we postulate an Ego distinct from the body. The septenary scale of states of consciousness is reflected in the heart, or rather its area [1], which vibrates and illumines theseven brains of the heart as it does the seven divisions or rays around the pineal gland.
      This consc[iousness] shows to us the difference between the nature and essence of, say, astral body and Ego. One molecular, invisible unless condensed, the other atomic-spiritual. (See example of smoker – ten cigarettes the smoke of each retaining its affinity.)
      [The] Idea of Ego [is] the only one compatible with the facts of physiological observation. [2]
      The mind or Ego, the subject of all and every state of consciousness is essentially a unity. The millions of various sub-states of consc[iousness] are a proof of the existence of this Ego. Even the brain cells furnish us with those states which affirm to us that there is an immortal soul etc.
      Every one of the five recognized senses was primarily a mental sense. A fish born in a cave is blind – let it out into a river and it will begin to feel it sees, until gradually the physical organ of sight evolves and it will see. A deaf and dumb man hears internally, in his own way. Knowing, feeling, willing, [are] not faculties of [the] mind – [they are] its colleagues. [3]
      [H. P. Blavatsky]

      [1] Word difficult to decipher; may be intended for “aura”, though it looks like “area”. (C. Jinarajadasa)
      [2] For an easier understanding, I have inserted the two words in italics in square brackets in this sentence, and kept the capital “I” in “Idea”. (CCA)
      [3] For an easier understanding, I have inserted in this last sentence the commas and the four words between square brackets, in italics. (CCA)
      On the future of mankind and the victory of truth over falsehood in the esoteric movement, see the book “The Fire and Light of Theosophical Literature”, by Carlos Cardoso Aveline.

      Published in 2013 by The Aquarian Theosophist, the volume has 255 pages and can be obtained through Amazon Books.
      Stay soft. It looks beautiful on you.