A Living Philosophy For Humanity

Volume XXXV
No. 3 (157) - Winter 1978-1979

[Cover photo: The Sleep of Winter and the Strength of Growth.]


A Living Philosophy for Humanity

Published every Three Months. Sponsored by an International Group of Theosophists.
Objectives: To uphold and promote the Original Principles of the modern Theosophical Movement, and to disseminate the teachings of the Esoteric Philosophy as set forth by H.P. Blavatsky and her Teachers.
Editor: Boris de Zirkoff.
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None of the organized Theosophical Societies, as such, are responsible for any ideas expressed in this magazine, unless contained in an official document. The Editor is responsible for unsigned articles only.



"To the occultist who is in earnest I say again beware of separateness, of that self which will meet you on every side. Open yourself to the pain and pleasure of the world; laugh with the children, listen to the birds, learn from music and from all beautiful things. Go to the bedside of those who die in hospitals, uncared-for, unknown, perhaps victims of scientific experiments; go into the dark alleys of the city and do not merely give, but get to know what poverty means; go into the laboratories of vivisectors, and into the places where animals are killed for food, and realize that the torture of the innocent is an actual fact; face it all and feel it all, and recognize that the sin and the shame of it are yours unless you fight against them ceaselessly. Then go back into the silence and the quiet of your room and shut yourself away front the world for a space and look for the light that is within you." - Mabel Collins, Pleasure and Pain, p. 34.

"Now we are the children of the earth; in eternity we are the children of the whole universe. Do I not feel in my own soul that I constitute a part of this mighty harmonious whole? Do I not have the consciousness that in this enormous, innumerable collection of beings in which Godhead is manifest - Supreme Force, if you prefer the term - that I constitute one link, one step between the lower orders of creation and the higher ones? If I see, clearly see, this ladder which rises from the plant to man, then why should I suppose that it stops at me, and does not lead higher and ever higher? I know that just as nothing is ever annihilated in the universe, so I can never perish but shall always exist, and always have existed. I know that besides myself spiritual beings must exist above me, and that truth is in this universe." - Count Lev Nikolayevich Tolstoy, in War and Peace (Quoted in Sunrise, December, 1978.). [3]




From America to India

Towards the end of 1878, the residence of H.P.B. and of Col. H. S. Olcott in the United States was drawing to its close, as plans were being made to go to India.

On October 22nd, orders were received from one of the Adept-Brothers, known as Serapis, to complete everything by the first days of December. November 14th, these orders were somewhat amended, and the dates between December 15th and 20th at the latest were assigned. On November 21st, the dates for actual sailing were stated to be December 7th or 17th.

As H.P.B. had become an American citizen on July 8th, 1878, she had no difficulties in securing a passport. Col. Olcott received from the President of the United States an autographed letter of recommendation to all U.S. Ministers and Consuls, and a diplomatic passport. He made brief business trips to Providence, Philadelphia and Washington in the early days of December, to set his own affairs in order.

A brief note in Col. Olcott's Diary, written in H.P.B.'s hand, states that she went on December 9th, very early in the morning, to meet one of the Brothers at the "Battery," a point in New York harbor.

On December 9th, an auction was held at H.P.B.'s residence, to dispose of the furniture and of various things not needed any longer. There is also a record of Col. Olcott having gone to see Edison at Menlo Park about his phonograph, but no further information about this is available.

December 17th was the last day for the travelers on American soil. H.P.B.'s entry in Col. Olcott's Diary, where she frequently wrote when Olcott was absent on business trips, says:

"Great day! Olcott packed up ... What next? All dark - but tranquil. COSUMMATUM EST.

"Olcott returned at 7 with three tickets for the British steamboat the 'Canada.' Wrote letters till 11 1/2. Curtis and Judge passed the evening. Maynard took H.P.B. to dinner to his house [the writer often speaking of herself in the third person]. She returned home at 9. Maynard made a present of a tobacco pouch. Charles [the big cat] lost! At nearly 12 H.S.O. and H.P.B. took leave of the chandelier and drove off in a carriage to the steamer ...

The following day, December 18th, at about 2:30 P.M., the steamer left the harbor, but lost the tide and to drop anchor off Coney Island. On December 18th, soon after noon, the pilot took the steamer across the Sandy Hook Bar, and the crossing of the Atlantic became a fact. The most authentic account of the voyage may be found in Col. Olcott's Old Diary [4] Leaves (Series II, Chapter 1.), from which we quote the following passages:

There were but ten of us passengers aboard; our three - H.P.B., Wimbridge, and myself; a Church of England clergyman and wife; a jolly, red-faced young Yorkshire squire; an Anglo-Indian army captain and wife; and another lady and gentleman. Can anyone fancy what that wretched clergyman passed through, what with sea-sickness, the biting, damp cold, and daily wrangles with H.P.B.! And yet, although she gave him unreservedly her opinion of his profession, enforced at times with expressions fit to curdle his blood, he had the breadth of mind to see her nobler qualities, and at parting almost wept for losing her. He actually sent her his photograph and begged hers in exchange.

We had fine weather for only three full days. On the 22nd it changed, and - as H.P.B. records it - "Wind and gale. Rain and fog came pouring into the saloon skylarks (sic). Everybody sea-sick except Mrs. Wise and H.P.B.; Moloney (myself) sang songs." The next morning was fine again, but a terrific gale burst on us in the afternoon, and the Captain was "telling fearful stories of shipwreck and drowning the whole evening. Mrs. - and Mr. - frightened out of their wits." After that the storm-fiends pursued us as if they were in the service of the opponents of our T.S. It seemed as though all the winds that Aeolus tied up in paper bags for Ulysses had broken loose and gone on the rampage. One entry of mine runs through the pages for 20th, 21st, 22nd, 23rd, 24th, 25th, 26th, 27th, 29th, 30th and 31st December, viz., "Here follow a train of days and nights of ennui, turmoil, and distress. By night, tossed about like a shuttle-cock between battledores. By day, the hours hanging so heavily as to seem whole days each. A small company of incongruous passengers, tiring of the sight of each others' faces." H.P.B. writes on one day's page: "Night of tossing and rolling; H.S.O. sick abed; monotonous, stupid, wearisome. On for the Land! On for India and HOME!" We sat out the Old Year and welcomed the New. The ship's bells rang Eight-bells twice, and down in the engine-room, agreeably to custom, there was a charivari of bells, pans, steel bars, and other sonorous objects. On New Year Day, 1879, we entered the British Channel in a sea of fog, typical of our as yet unmanifested future. Steaming very carefully and shaving by a number of vessels, we took the pilot, a very old, moss-grown sort of man, at 2:30 P.M., and at 5:30 had to anchor off Deal. As the Captain discovered later, his vision had become so impaired that he could not properly distinguish a red from a green light, and we would certainly have come to grief but for the unflagging vigilance of Captain Sumner - a splendid fellow, an ornament to the British merchant service. If the [5] pilot had not become blear-eyed with age, he would have taken our ship straight through to Thames Haven, and so saved us a full day's misery in the Channel.

As it was, a dense fog closed in upon us, and we felt our way along so cautiously that we had to anchor again the second night, and only reached Gravesend the following morning, where we took train to London, and so finished the first stage of our long voyage. We were received with charming hospitality by Dr. and Mrs. Billing at their suburban house at Norwood Park, which became the rallying centre of all our London friends and correspondents; among them Stanton Moses, Massey, Dr. Wyld, Rev. and Mrs. Aytoun, Henry Hood, Palmer Thomas, the Ellises, A. R. Wallace, several Hindu law and medical students, Mrs. Knowles, and other ladies and gentlemen. On the 5th January I presided at a meeting of the British T.S. at which there was an election of officers.

Our time in London was completely filled with odds and ends of Society business, receipts of callers and the paying of visits to the British Museum and elsewhere; the whole spiced with phenomena by H.P.B. and seances with Mrs. Hollis-Billing's spirit guide, "Ski," whose name is known throughout the whole world of spiritualists.

The most striking incident of our stay in London was the meeting of a Master by three of us as we were walking down Cannon Street. There was a fog that morning so dense that one could hardly see across the street, and London appeared at its worst. The two who were with me saw him first, as I was next to the kerb, and just then my eyes were otherwise occupied. But when they uttered an exclamation, I turned my head quickly and met the glance of the Master as he looked back at me over his shoulder. I did not recognize him for an acquaintance, but I recognized the face as that of an Exalted One; for that type once seen can never be mistaken. As there is one glory of the sun and another glory of the moon, so there is one brightness of the average good man or woman's face, and another, a transcendent one, of the face of an Adept: through the clay lamp of the body, as the learned Maimonides calls it, the inner light of the awakened spirit shines effulgently. We three friends kept together in the City and went together back to Dr. Billings's house, yet on entering we were told by both Mrs. Billings and H.P.B. that the Brother had been there and mentioned that he had met us three - naming us - in the City. Mrs. Billing's story was interesting. She said that the front door was locked and bolted as usual, so that nobody could enter without ringing. Yet as she left her sitting room to go to H.P.B.'s room through the hall, she almost ran up against a tall stranger who was standing between the [6] hall-door and H.P.B.'s room. She described him as a very tall and handsome Hindu, with a peculiarly piercing eye which seemed to look her through. For the moment she was so staggered that she could not say a word, but the stranger said, "I wish to see Madame Blavatsky," and moved towards the door of the room where she sat. Mrs Billing opened it for him and bade him enter. He did so, and walked straight towards H.P.B., made her an Oriental salutation, and began speaking to her in a tongue the sounds of which were totally unfamiliar to Mrs. Billing; although her long practice as a public medium had brought her into momentary contact with people of many different nations. Mrs. B. naturally rose to leave the room, but H.P.B. bade her stay and not to mind their speaking in a strange language together, as they had some occult business to transact.

Whether or not this dark and mysterious Hindu caller brought H.P.B. a reinforcement of her psychical power or not I cannot say, but at the dinner-table that evening she gladdened her hostess's heart by bringing up for her, from under the edge of the table, a Japanese teapot of exceeding lightness; I think at her request, though I will not be sure about that ...

The next evening, after dinner, H.P.B. explained to ourselves and two visitors the duality of her personality and the law which it illustrated. She admitted without qualification that it was a fact that she was one person at one moment and another the next. She gave us all astounding bit of proof in support of her assertion. As we sat chatting in the gloaming, she silent near the window with her two hands resting on her knees, she presently called us and looked down at her hands. One of them was as white, as sculpturesque as usual; but the other was the longer hand of a man, covered with the brown skin of the Hindu; and, on looking wonderingly into her face, we saw that her hair and eyebrows had also changed colour, and from fair brown had become jetty black! Say it was a hypnotic Maya, yet what a fine one it was: produced without the utterance of a word by way of suggestion! It may have been a Maya, for I recollect that the next morning her hair was still much darker than naturally, and her eyebrows quite black. She noticed this herself on looking into the mirror in the drawing-room, and remarking, to me that she had forgotten to remove all traces of the change, she turned away, passed her hands over her face and hair two or three times, and, facing me again, she was her natural self once more.

On the 15th January we sent our heavy baggage to Liverpool; oil the 17th I issued an Executive Notice appointing, ad interim, Major-General A. Doubleday, U.S.A., F.T.S., Acting President of the [7] T. S.; Mr. David A. Curtis, Acting Corresponding Secretary; and Mr. G. V. Maynard, Treasurer: W. Q. Judge was already elected Recording Secretary. This arrangement was for the purpose of carrying on the work at the New York Headquarters until the future disposal of the Society should have been decided upon, according to what should happen after we had settled at Bombay. The same evening, at 9:40, we left from Euston for Liverpool, after a delightful stay of a fortnight with and among our kind friends and colleagues. Many were there to see us off, and I remember, as if it had happened but yesterday, walking to and fro the vast waiting-room with Dr. George Wyld, and exchanging views upon religious matters. The next day we passed at the Great Western Hotel, Liverpool, and at 5 P.M. embarked on the "Speke Hall" in a downpour of rain. The vessel was dirty and disagreeable to see; and what with that, and the falling of the rain, the smell of damp tapestries and carpets in the saloon and cabins, and the forlorn faces of our forty fellow-passengers, all equally disgusted as ourselves, it was a wretched omen of our long voyage out to India...

We lay at anchor in the Mersey all the night of the 18th, but got away by the next dawn. My Diary shows how it looked to us: "On board everything is in a pitiable plight. The vessel is loaded almost to the water's edge - it would seem - with railway iron. There is a rough sea and nearly every wave comes aboard of us. Wimbridge and I are quartered in a cabin forward on the main deck, and are cut off from communication with the saloon aft. It is as much as a landsman's life is worth to attempt the transit. How sad it is for seafaring stewards is shown in the fact that we got nothing to eat until 3 P.M." The same misery went on the next day, and but for a basket of bread and butter that had been given us in London, and that by good luck had been put into our cabin, we should have gone hungry enough. Meanwhile H.P.B. was making it lively for the servants and her fellow-passengers who, with one or two exceptions, were shocked by her ironclad language, outraged by her religious heterodoxy, and unanimously voted her a nuisance. The ship being struck by a tremendous sea, H.P.B. was pitched against a leg of the dining-table and got her knee badly bruised. The third day we two got her peremptory command to come aft and show ourselves; so we rolled our trousers up to our knees, took our shoes and stocking in our hands, and made rushes through the slip-sloppy water on deck, between the rolls of the ship. We found the saloon in confusion, the carpets up, water and wet things everywhere, and smells that one might expect after a ship's cabin had been shut up for two or three days. H.P.B. laid up in her cabin with her lame knee, and through the confined space of the small cabins her strong [8] voice would ring out the name of the stewardess, "Meeses Yetz" (Mrs. Yates), in stentorian tone. O, Bay of Biscay, under what an un-alluring aspect wert thou presented to us, poor, sea-sick wretches!

Cape Finisterre was passed on the night of 23rd January, and so were we delivered from the raging Bay. 13tth we got no observation of the sun that day, and the passing from our cabin to the saloon was as like wading through a wet ditch or a mill flume. The next day the weather broke and we had an azure sky and a sapphire sea. The air was balmy and spring-like, and our bedraggled passengers crawled out to bask in the brightness of the day. The rose-and-opal tinted shores of Africa, seen through a pearly haze, rose like fairy cliffs out of the sea. At the rate of 250 to 300 miles a day, we sailed up the Mediterranean, past Gibraltar, past Algiers, on to Malta, where we anchored for the night on the 28th January, and filled the coal-bunkers. We went ashore and viewed the picturesque fortress and town, so famed in history for the deeds of heroism done by its besiegers and defenders. Off again the next morning, with the ship besmeared with coal-dust in its every nook and cranny; and, as if in keeping, we encountered bad weather almost as soon as we left port. The wretched ship rolled and pitched like mad, shipping seas that would not have been even noticed on a vessel less deeply laden. All brightness fled, of course, from the faces of the passengers, and we were miserably sea-sick; our only compensation being that H.P.B. herself, who had been ridiculing us for our weakness of will and holding herself up for a pattern, was overtaken by Karma and was sick also. It was our turn to jibe and jeer, and we paid her back in kind.

Port Said was reached on 21nd February, visited by us all, and then came the blessed rest for the storm-tossed ones, of two days and nights in the Suez Canal. This, it is to be remembered, was in the days before the use of electric search-light made night passages possible through the Canal. The "Speke Hall" entered it at 10:30 A.M. on the 2nd; tied up that night opposite the Arab village of Khandara - where, at an Arab coffee-house, we had genuine black coffee and some smokes of narguilchs; the next night, we tied up at a station five miles from Suez, where l passed a merry evening at the station-master's house, in company with two Corsican pilots who talked French fluently; and at last, in the early dawn, emerged into the Red Sea and began the third and final stage of our sea-pilgrimage to the Land of Desire. Letters met us at Suez from some of our Hindu friends, which quickened our feverish anxiety to get to our destination as soon as possible. That night the moon paved with silver the waters of the Gulf of Suez, and we felt as if we were sailing on a dream-sea. Nothing of moment happened until the 12th, [9] when a flue burst in the boiler, and we had to stop for repairs. Patched up, it burst again the next day, and there were two long waits, and many precious hours lost and much irritation felt by us, to be checked thus when we ought to be close to the Bombay lights. On the 15th, at noon, we were but 160 miles away from them, and the next morning entered Bombay Harbour. I had sat up on deck until I o’clock in the morning, looking at the majesty of the Indian sky, and straining my gaze at the first glimpse of the Bombay light ...

The ship's anchor was hardly dropped before we were boarded by three Hindu gentlemen in search of us. All seemed strangers to us, but when they pronounced their names I opened my arms and pressed them to my breast. They were Mooljee Thackersey, Pandit Shyamji Krishnavarma, and Mr. Ballajee Sitaram - all holders of our Society's diplomas. No wonder I did not recognize Mooljee, clad as he was in the artistic dress of his Bhattia caste, the dhoti and top coat of white muslin and the red turban with its quaint helmet-like shape and horn pointing forward about the brow. When he and I crossed the Atlantic together in 1870, he wore European dress throughout, and did not in the least resemble his present self. Shyamji's name has since become famous throughout Europe as a learned pandit coaching Professor Monier Williams; and H.P.B. and I felt for him from first to last a sort of paternal affection. Our three friends had passed the night on board a "bunderboat," waiting for us, and were as joyful for our arrival as we were to come ...

The party was taken to Hurrychund Chintamon's own house on Girgaum Road, adjoining his glass-roofed photographic studio. The very next day a reception was held there to which some 300 persons were invited. Very soon, however, various difficulties arose with Hurrychund and the party began to look for another bungalow to move into. They moved on March 5th or 7th to 108 Girgaum Back Road which Col. Olcott speaks of as a "rustic bungalow at Rupees 33 per month."

On March 2nd, their friend, Mooljee, found a servant for H.P.B., a Gujerati boy of fifteen called Babula, who spoke several languages. When H.P.B. passed away, Babula wrote a beautiful tribute to her which appeared in the Indian Mirror of May 13th, 1891. It was reprinted in Lucifer, Vol VIII, July, 1891, pp. 288-89.

According to Col. Olcott's Diaries, a letter from Alfred Percy Sinnett was received by him on February 25th, 1879 - the first letter expressing desire to become acquainted with him and H.P.B.

Such was the beginning of the experiences which the Founders went through during their stay in India. [10]


Vonda Urban

"The Self of matter and the SELF of Spirit can never meet! One of the twain must disappear; there is no place for both." (The Voice of The Silence, p. 12.) In graphic clarity, these lines point out the duality of our human nature with unmistakable definition of the highest and lowest reaches of our human-hood. We see the poles of self-consciousness that can soar to the heights of sublime spiritual aspiration - or fall to the depths of moral degradation; the motivation of impersonal love that can expand to universal selflessness - or self-love that can constrict into a stifling tomb of utter selfishness. The choice is ours all the way to either end; each choice we make marking the overall direction that will one day illuminate the way to Chelaship, and eventually on to Mahatmaship - or sink ever deeper in the mire of matter - on downward to annihilation. Our evolution through the human kingdom of life is consciously self-directed. We must awaken and unfold the Spiritual Principle in the Personal Ego; for the Kama-Manasic animal-man is unconditionally mortal unless the personal Ego identifies with its parent, Higher Manas. This determination is the path upward; the path of noble motives, altruism, spiritual ethics, selfless service to humanity. On this path, we lose the Self to find the SELF; or, if we choose the downward path, we identify completely with the Self, ultimately to lose the SELF by severing the link between them; for the personal Ego survives only by grafting itself onto the higher Human Soul, the Reincarnating EGO.

A careful study of the Septenary Law of Universal Nature, particularly of man's sevenfold constitution, will give the knowledge to understand why our baby-human-hood is groping its tormented way through the "no man's land" where spirit and matter meet. This technical teaching of man's composite nature is the key to self-knowledge, bringing with it the responsibility to direct our actions with reasoned judgement rather than by the whims of our emotional desires and compulsions. The Seven Principles of man can be grouped in various ways and his manifold being studied from many different aspects; but in this analysis the commonly held three-fold division of Spirit, Mind and Body arrange the human septenary constitution into the following parts: an Upper Duad of Atman and Buddhi which is the Divine-Spiritual Monad, the core of the core of our essential SELF; then an Intermediate Duad of Manas and Kama which is the Human Soul or Psyche. This is the seat of ordinary human consciousness in its duality, consisting of Higher Manas - the Reincarnating EGO, made up of Lower Manas and Kama. The Lower Triad, composed of Prana, Linga Sarira and Sthula Sarira, is the Vital-Astral-Physical Body, the temple we [11] live in. Here then are the three bases in the human constitution carrying three separate forces of energy working together in man's evolution; the Divine-Spiritual (Spirit, the Heart-Life), the Psycho-Mental (Mind, the Thought-Life) and the Vital-Astral-Physical (Body, the Desire-Life). Self-consciousness inheres in the Psycho-Mental line of evolution, functioning through the dual aspect of Mind, with the lower portion focused in the physical brain which is overshadowed by the Spiritual Radiance flowing from the Higher Self. Thus we can readily see how the brain, the organ of intellection through which we choose, is either ensouled or coarsened by the predominance of spiritual or gross thoughts and motives; and likewise, the sense perception of the physical vehicle is refined or animalized in keeping with the mental-Spiritual or mental-animal qualities imprinted on it.

In the telling excerpt quoted here from Fundamentals of the Esoteric Philosophy (pp 227), Dr. G. de Purucker warns of the seriousness of our self-conscious responsibility:

We have spoken before of the "lost soul" as being at one pole, and the Master it the other pole, of consciousness. It is between the higher human soul and the human soul (or man proper), that lies the psychological frontier over which one must pass forwards or upwards; backwards or downwards; into regeneration or degeneration. If you go "upwards" and continue to go "upwards" or rather "inwards" ... it is quality that we are speaking of, the refining of the human ego; the penetrating, the breaking into, as it were, of the final sheaths of our inner being that makes the distinction - if we continue to go "upwards" or "inwards," we attain finally to Masterhood. But, contrariwise, if we go "downwards," if our egoic soul-quality deteriorates ... is given over to full attraction or gravitation towards matter, the momentum increases with time and use, and, through attrition as it were, that part of us where our egoic consciousness then resides, called "soul," is worn away and finally vanishes. We lose the ego-center, the soul-center, which divorced from its upper life-thread, is dissipated, and, as said, is at last annihilated. There is the cause of a "lost soul" at one pole of consciousness; and of the Master at the other pole. When mortality becomes Immortality; when the corruptible becomes Incorruptible, then do we attain to full and complete conscious Masterhood - a Lord of Life.

Spiritual unfoldment is processed through a vast "lost and found" clearing house in our psychological nature where we must sort out the complex negative cross-currents in our character by disciplining the choices that will help us to lose the I am I personality to find the I am Individuality; lose egotism to find altruism; lose the instinct for self-preservation to find the motive for [12] self-sacrifice; lose the "poor me" sensitivity to find compassion; lose fear to find strength; lose favoritism to find fairness, expediency to find integrity, competition to find cooperation; lose the desire to take, to find the way to give; lose the heresy of separateness, to find Brotherhood ... But let us not delude ourselves into imagining that we travel the high road of Occultism at the same time that we hunger for the taste of the world in pursuing the Desire-Life rooted in our ambitions, vanities, possessions or pleasures. The "lust for life" and Spiritual aspiration lie in opposite directions; and our anchorage in one or the other camp is expressed primarily through our inter-relationships with others - EVERYONE - showing exactly where the poles of our self-consciousness are weighed in the simple test of whether we live to help others or use them to help ourselves; for whatever we do that, in the very least, takes advantage of another is human usurpation, even though the practice of "upmanship" is considered very smart by worldly standards.

Yet, when we are disenchanted with the emptiness of material values; disheartened by taking advantage of our fellow man; we begin to intuit our self-conscious responsibility and seek a way out of the "dark labyrinth of illusion." The Teachings of the Ancient Wisdom lead us to the Heart-Life, show us the Path - an austere Path of self-discipline, self-denial, self-effacement, self-forgetfulness and self-abnegation practiced within a stringent code of Spiritual ethics and DUTY. The degree to which we live up to the rules marks the strength of our Spiritual Aspiration. The seriousness of the Path of Chelaship is discussed with great significance in the remarkable Mahatma Letters. The following random citations make the point:

"... in our view the highest aspirations for the welfare of humanity become tainted with selfishness if, in the mind of the philanthropist, there lurks the shadow of desire for self benefit or a tendency to do injustice, even when these exist unconsciously to himself ..." (Letter No. 2, p. 8).

"... We never whine over the inevitable but try to make the best of the worst. And though we neither push nor draw into the mysterious domain of occult nature those who are unwilling; never shrink from expressing our opinions freely and fearlessly, yet we are ever as ready to assist those who come to us ..." (Letter No. 4, pp. 16-17.)

"... if you value the word of honor of one who never - never during his whole life polluted his lips with an untruth, then do not forget the words I once wrote to you ...of those who engage themselves in the occult sciences; he who does it must either reach the goal or perish. Once fairly started on the way to the great Knowledge, to doubt is to risk insanity; to come to a dead stop is to fall; to recede is to tumble backward, heading into an abyss' ..." (Letter No. 8, p. 31.)[13]

"... he who is desirous to learn how to benefit humanity, and believes himself able to read the characters of other people, must begin first of all, to learn to know himself, to appreciate his own character at its true value ... and remember that the first requisite in even a simple fakir, is that he should have trained himself to remain as indifferent to moral pain as to physical suffering. Nothing can give us personal pain or pleasure ..." (Letter No. 29, pp. 219, 221.)

"... we seek to bring men to sacrifice their personality - a passing flash - for the welfare of the whole humanity, hence for their own immortal Egos, a part of the latter, as humanity is a fraction of the integral whole, that it will one day become ... no one ought to be expecting thanks, for doing his duty by humanity and the cause of truth, - since, after all, he who labours for others, labours but for himself ..." (Letter No. 30, pp. 228-9, 236.)

"... We have one word for all aspirants: TRY" (Letter No. 35, p. 244.).

"... I have only given you a glimpse into the hell of this lost soul, to show you what disaster may come upon the 'lay-chela' who snatches at forbidden power before his moral nature is developed to the point of fitness for its exercise ... We have no favorites, break no rules ... You know our motto, and that its practical application has erased the word 'impossible' from the occultist's vocabulary. If he wearies not of trying, he may discover that most noble of all facts, his true SELF..." (Letter No. 59, pp. 335-6.)

"... beware of Pride and Egoism, two of the worst snares for the feet of him who aspires to climb the high paths of Knowledge and Spirituality. ... UNSELFISHNESS, and an eager readiness for self-sacrifice for the good of others; what a 'multitude of sins' does not this cover! It is a truism, yet I say it, that in adversity alone can we discover the real man ... One who would have higher instruction given to him has to be a true theosophist in heart and soul, not merely in appearance ..." (Letter No. 66, pp. 363-4.)

"... Few men know their inherent capacities - only the ordeal of crude chelaship develops them. (Remember these words: they have a deep meaning.)" (Letter No. 67, p. 365.)

Isn't it amazing! All the wealth, the power, the ambition and the pleasure that we grasp for in "living the good life" are absolutely worthless on the Path of Occultism; they are merely the avenues through which the self-seeking, self-indulgent I am I egotism reaches out for the approval and adulation of the world - as if to make up for the lack of SELF-approval in a spiritually starving soul ... But when we begin to think about our self-conscious responsibility and consider the options and alternatives of our [14] predominating interests in life; when we no longer cling to the tarnished trophies of the Desire-Life; no longer have to prove to the world how great we are; when we no longer wish to moulder in the mortuary of mortality - it is because we are beginning to listen to the Spiritual promptings of the Heart-Life, teaching us that "when we no longer need to feed on the love of others, we learn to give abundantly."


Dara Eklund

One of our few modern textbooks of Theosophy, appealing to scientists as well as to occultists, is Gordon Plummer's text: The Mathematics of the Cosmic Mind. A seasoned Theosophist may dip into this study believing he will retrieve the harmonic ratios of the ancient Greeks, even amidst the confusion of our current times. Suddenly he is forced to swim in large astronomical ground swells such as "the levels of space," within the Boundless. He may find his fellow scientist more equipped to handle such concepts than he is, though he ponder deeply the abstract teachings of The Secret Doctrine on Space, Time, Motion or Consciousness. Today's scientists are beginning to accept the abstract idea of consciousness as Motion, although they still place limits to Space.

Interpreting Plato in a series for students* [* Plato, p. 137 (Twayne Publishers, 1977.).] William and Mabel Sahakian have written: "Time is the sphere of Becoming ... the moving image or copy of eternity. ... While the Pattern of time exists from all eternity, time, a creation or phenomenon, strives toward perfection by seeking to press on toward ... immortality."

G. de Purucker handles this question more delicately, for what is pressing on towards immortality? As he writes, any universe or even the smallest entity within it, is a "God embodied" - in man himself are all the "invisible ranges of his constitution."* [* Fountain-Source of Occultism, p. 75.] These are the "Spaces of Space" ... the "frontierless fields" within the vaster Cosmos enclosing all.

If a man sees himself only as he is now, rather than as the sum total of all his states of consciousness, he will say: "I am young" or "I am old," and freely believe it. Immortality will only be realizable to him when he can see himself as the Whole of all he has ever been or will be, and Space as his corollary, Space as more than a mere container of things. The "permeability" of Space becomes known to him as his "timelessness." He becomes assimilated in Durability. Space has become both substantial and filled with Consciousness. His range for "ranging" has plunged inward, and [15] he is free to become a "Sky Walker."

A Sky Walker cannot be envisioned tied to some umbilical cord such as our space men are attached with to their space crafts. A Sky Walker strides instead through inner worlds, with Mercury's winged feet. Free of earthly fetters he regains omniscience. Wherever in the world's work he may be needed, he is there instantly.

Attachment to our private emotional eddies and self-made involvements is what keeps us from our spatial destinies. If, like a phoenix, we could build a pyre of all those clingings and attachments, and, fusing them with a single spark, resolve them into a flame, we might be free. Yet the legend of the phoenix foreordains its freedom only every five hundred years.

It is within our lesser spatial worlds, within the temple of our human bodies that we can restore our vital principle. Every thought, so teach the sutras of the Chan Buddhist School, takes us up or down the scale. By a single thought, the world can be saved. The quest is to make our being so Universal in scope that the woe of the world is wholly encompassed in our thinking.

Only then will a single thought of unbounded compassion be strong enough visibly to change the outer scene. Until that time we may reduce the flood-tide of karmic sorrow by the quiet and continued expansion into our inward Spaces of Space.


Maguel E. Machell

"The way to final freedom is within thy SELF." - The Voice of the Silence, p. 39.

The story of Life is a story of Relationships. My Relation to life determines all my thinking and doing. It can be a superficial relationship, an objective relationship, a subjective relationship, a receptive relationship, a repelling relationship, a temporal relationship, an eternal relationship, a materialistic relationship or a spiritual relationship. Whatever it be, it is more than a mere attitude or appraisal. It is how I deeply feel and react to the world and life around me,

It is important, I believe, from time to time to consider this relationship. If it can be considered as sound, healthy and rewarding, then it is a good idea to ponder it deeply with an eye to strengthening and enriching it.

On the basis of spiritual immortality, a man is justified in seeing his relationship to Life as one rooted in incalculable aeons of time. However "new," "modern" or "progressive" the era or environment in which he finds himself, he is justified in reminding himself again and again that this Here and Now constitute but a passing phenomenon, momentary and unimpressive [16] against the horizon of Eternity. Let him further remind himself that he brings to the contemplation of these momentary impressions a subconsciousness (or super-consciousness) literally steeped in memories, impressions, vibrations brought over from an infinitude of past environments, conditions and experiences, which inevitably color and influence his relation to this momentary life experience.

Insofar, as he is able to compel his immortality to be his Chamber of Observation on this Here and Now, it is likely to guarantee to him a far more impersonal, rational and uninvolved evaluation than that of a man to whom this is the first, last and greatest experience vouchsafed to him. This same Immortal Perspective will further remind him that here, as elsewhere and else when, what he perceives with these senses is never more than a material disguise of an unseen Spiritual Reality which ever was and ever will be.

Life, insofar as it is to hold any enduring value, must be geared to that Reality. This is the Supreme Relationship demanding the disciple's untiring contemplation and devotion. One of the unearthly delights of this Relationship is its power to unveil an infinite horizon. Here is no end, no finish. Today, Tomorrow, this Incarnation - all are windows opening upon Eternal Life. This today, this here and now can never be commonplace when viewed as stepping-stones to Infinite Attainment. The disciple's "common place" moments are those in which he severs the relationship of the Here and Now with Universality and Immortality - moments in which he allows his gaze to fall from the Infinite Horizon to Today's grubby sidewalk. And yet, with gaze joyously fixed upon the sunlit distances of Infinite Unfoldment, this same sidewalk becomes a radiant Pathway to Realization, treading which can lead to splendors transcending mortal imagination.

Deeply and clearly enough perceived, man's Relation to Life is a Fabulous Relation, based on his own conscious Immortality. In the consciousness of that Immortality, this moment is drenched with the miraculous essences of ALL TIME!


THE WISDOM OF THE HEART: Katherine Tingley Speaks.
In this little volume, just off the Press, Katherine Tingley speaks for herself. We learn of the motives that inspired her. We sense that her message is universal, overlapping barriers so often created by the dogmas in religions or the speculative limits of philosophies. Hers is an appeal to the wisdom of the heart. A more extensive notice will appear in our next issue.
Order from Point Loma Publications, Inc., P.O. Box 9966, San Diego, CA 92109. - $5.75.