A Living Philosophy For Humanity

Volume XXXV
No. 4 (158) - Spring 1979

[Cover photo: Katherine Tingley.]


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.
Subscriptions: $3.00 a year (four issues), single copy 75 cents. Send all subscriptions, renewals and correspondence to: 634 South Gramercy Place, #301, Los Angeles, California 90005. Make checks and money orders payable to "Theosophia".

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.



In respect to the animals, [man] may be regarded as the accepted ruler in their kingdom.  Most of them are willingly his slaves; those who are not, he contrives to subjugate sooner or later, by his superior skill and inventiveness ... Men justify their sin against the animals by supposing that they have no soul ... The student of occultism is aware that that which is himself, and that which is called the Master, and that which is the worm beneath his foot, are all one and the same. When the sense of separateness loosens its stifling grip upon him, he knows that this is so. He knows that not only his spirit, and that which animates the worm and gives it life, is Divine, but also the body in which his soul dwells, and that lesser one which forms the little temple for the worm ... We have permitted the idea of discovery to excuse those who find pleasure in the sin of vivisection, in the hideous laboratories of physiological experiment. This is a blot on our history which will necessitate ages of expiation, retribution, compensation ... The cost of this useless experimentation is that which none who do not belong to the army of Hate and Evil dare think of, or can think of, and remain sane.  Torture, suffering ... the absolute and shameless abuse of power; the betrayal of confidence, the disregard of all laws of pity, affection, and duty ... How is this wrong ... to be made right? ... There is but one way of attacking a great wrong which stains the whole human race ... Pledge yourself to use your own strength against it unflinchingly and unceasingly, as long as your life lasts and to draw all whom you can touch or influence in any way into the same position ... - Mabel Collins, Pleasure and Pain, (1896), pp. 22-27. [3]


Boris de Zirkoff

July 11, 1979, will mark the fiftieth anniversary of Katherine Tingley's "passing into Light ..." after a long life dedicated to the service of humanity.

As is often the case with unusual people, her stature grows as her image recedes into the distant past, Misunderstood by some, violently opposed by others, misjudged by those whose materialism and ignorant conceit were challenged by her spiritual outlook on life, Katherine Ting-ley is slowly being recognized as an inspired leader of thought, and a witness to the undreamt of possibilities of the hidden powers in man.

The Point Loma Theosophical Center which she founded on the eve of the twentieth century, and of which she was the driving force and the inspirer, was another "witness," in the age-old meaning of this mystical expression, to the redeeming and spiritually-constructive power of human brotherhood, Apart from being the Headquarters of a world-wide organization, it was intended to be a nucleus of a mystery-school built on the traditional lines of ancient temple-schools, in which men and women who were ready in this incarnation were taught how to unlock from within themselves their inborn spiritual capacities, and how to put them into practice on lines of devoted service and unselfish endeavor within the structure of a cooperative effort in the cause of the Ancient-Wisdom.

Such an effort can be successfully started and harmoniously conducted only by an initiated disciple of esoteric knowledge, in touch with the Custodians of that knowledge, and laboring under their tutelage. Such an initiated disciple Katherine Tingley undoubtedly was, and I take this occasion to declare this as my own irrefutable conviction.

She vas a powerful character, with an immense driving force, an unquenchable inspiration, a total dedication to the highest spiritual ideals, an inspiring outlook on life, on the potencies of every human being, and a disregard of the negative aspects of those whose positive qualities she incessantly fostered, and whose dormant capabilities she constantly urged into action.

She was a person of kindly and sympathetic attitude wherever these were required, and a person of great moral strength and dynamic force when such were needed. Some of her actions and plans showed rather plainly that she was able to use a power of foreknowledge not ordinarily common among men, and to rely on a thorough acquaintance with human nature gathered in previous lives. These made it possible for her to blend into concerted action the lives of a many-sided community made up of a large number of men and women from the four quarters of the globe. This, if nothing else, was a clear evidence of spiritual leadership, as a genuine leader is a man or woman who can [4] sense the aspirations and higher desires of others and release them to action in harmonious unity. It is relatively easy to try and impose one's own will upon ignorant followers who happen to love authority where they see it. It is far more difficult to guide the potencies of other peoples' wills into constructive spiritual and ethical channels, and to lead them into forceful and sustained action in a great and impersonal Cause. Katherine Tingley was able to do that throughout her career.

Some have attempted to convince others that she was a medium and that she was occasionally engaged in mediumistic pursuits of a kind. Only ignorant people can hold this view, those unacquainted with Katherine Tingley's character and her opinion upon such matters. In all my association with her, never once have I seen the slightest tendency towards mediumism or anything commonly associated with it. She was adamant on psychic matters, warning against the development of any psychic powers, or abnormal psychic tendencies unregulated by reason and a sound intellectual understanding. However, it is understandable that some of her spiritual qualities of foreknowledge, direct perception of certain truths, and developed spiritual intuition, would appear as akin to mediumism, to those whose knowledge about such things is almost nil, and whose information is usually distorted by other channels through which it had to pass before reaching them.

Neither the personality of Katherine Tingley nor the nature and objectives of her work can ever be adequately understood and justly appraised without taking into consideration the fact that she was an initiated disciple of one of the Teachers and was often acting as a direct agent instructed to perform a certain task in the world, to leave a specific message for future generations of men, and to carry out a certain mandate better known to those under whose directions she worked. Unless this is taken into careful advisement, there will be misunderstandings and misjudgments as a natural result of wrong premises and distorted views.

As other direct agents of the Brotherhood of Teachers, Katherine Tingley exhibited upon occasion somewhat conflicting tendencies and characteristics which cannot be adequately explained without at least some knowledge of occult matters. This is almost invariably the case with such agents, and this fact alone, if nothing else, makes it very difficult to appraise their work, judge their actions and assess their worth in proper relation to their surrounding and their karmic circumstances.

Agents of the Brotherhood are not mediums in the usual meaning of that term, which, as a rule, is connected in peoples' minds with one or another condition of trance. Such agents are mediators, in the sense of being channels - self-consciously aware - through whom some specific teaching or work is to be conveyed, and these are [5] sometimes different from the personal characteristics of the disciple and may be conveyed only partially or with slight modifications. Any careful study of the life of H.P.B. or of W.Q. Judge will show this with considerable clarity. They were also mediators of their own type and kind. As a matter of fact, the Theosophical Movement - using this term in a worldwide meaning, and without relation to any specific age or era of history - has had a number of mediators who worked, and work even today, under the general guidance of the Brotherhood, to the extent to which they are able to channel that guidance through their own personal natures.

One of the major achievements of Katherine Tingley, and a crowning victory of her work and training, was the fact that she was able to hand over her Torch of Light to another direct agent of the Brotherhood - Gottfried de Purucker - who in his own quality of mediator formulated and outlined further installments of the Esoteric Philosophy from the same ageless source of Wisdom.

Now, fifty years after Katherine Tingley's departure from our scene of action, let this brief account stand as a declaration of trust and deep appreciation from the present writer for the inestimable privilege of having been led to knowing her personally, and for the karmic opportunity of having been for some years a pupil under her tutelage and guidance. The Center which she founded and led will some day be recognized as an integral part of the Mystery-Schools, which arise and disappear temporarily, on the shifting scenes of history, as links in an endless chain of similar efforts. They stand as Witnesses to the never-dying Wisdom of Those who guide the faltering steps of the human race through the stages of its immaturity and its search for the Light that can illumine all life, the Present and the Past, and throw its shining beam upon the Future.


[Excerpts front the recently published book, The Wisdom of the Heart,
embodying pronouncements by Katherine Tingley on many vital aspects. See page 16 of the present issue for full particulars.]

The secret of human life in its fullness is self-directed effort. Let man take the first step boldly in honest self-examination, with a daring that stops before nothing that may impede his path, and he will find very soon that he has the key to wisdom and to the power which redeems. Discovered through his own efforts, by the law of self-directed evolution, this key will open before him the chambers of the Self.

Dare to be yourself, your greater Self! Dare to leap forward and be something you never before knew it was in you to be! Dare to move out and upward in the strength of your soul and find something new in your make-up. It is a critical time for everyone who aspires, for many things are in the balance. The need is for energy, aspiration, trust, [6] and the power of the Spiritual Will. "The more one dares, the more he shall obtain."

The true doctrine is secret, hidden; not by the teacher, but in the very nature of the teaching itself, and to gain it, the student must enter by the only door which gives entrance, which is the living of the life.

Wisdom comes not from the multiplication of spoken or written instruction; what you have is enough to last you a thousand years. Wisdom comes from the performance of duty and in the Silence, and only the Silence expresses it.

Fear nothing, for every renewed effort raises all former failures into lessons, all sins into experiences. Understand me when I say that in the light of renewed effort the karma of all your past alters; it no longer threatens; it passes from the plane of penalty before the soul's eye up to that of tuition. It stands as a monument, a reminder of past weakness and a warning against future failure.

There is but one true and legitimate battlefield - the Mind of man, where the duality of our nature keeps us constantly at war, the only rightful war there is, the war of the god in us against the lower self. The kingdom of heaven is within, and no one is so far front the light and the truth that he cannot turn tomorrow and find it.

Universal Brotherhood has no creeds or dogmas. It is built on the basis of common sense. It teaches that man is divine, that the soul of man is imperishable, and that Brotherhood is a fact in Nature, and consequently takes in all humanity.

Let it be remembered that the Teacher's work, the real work, has naught to do with words written or spoken. In the past, when vibratory forces were still understood, words were never used or looked for in the conveyance of the higher teachings ... Harmony is the key to all occult advance, and it is a knowledge of its laws and the relations of sound, number and color as applied and directed by the pupils that enables the Teacher to strike the higher tones and awake the spiritual vision.

The mystic is one who lives ever in the consciousness of his Divinity. He senses intuitively the divine life in all things. He sees within the outer, which is fleeting and perishable, an Inner which is imperishable and eternal. The path of the mystic is a secret path, in a sense, and a silent and wonderful path. Yet it is open to all, and is so simple and so near at hand that many who long to tread it yet turn away front it thinking it to be something else. He in whom the soul is ever active, ever urging to compassionate thought and deed, he is the true mystic, and to him Theosophy is no system of sterile thought but a light, a teacher, a companion, ever calling to compassionate action, ever urging to higher things.* (* [We also recommend Katherine Tingley's earlier work, entitled Theosophy: The Path of the Mystic, compiled by Grace Knoche in 1922. Third and Revised edition, Theosophical University Press, Pasadena, Calif., 1977.]) [7]


W. Emmett Small

Tennyson wrote in his poem In Memoriam (liv):

Behold, we know not anything;
I can but trust that good shall fall
At last - far off - at last, to all,
And every winter change to spring.

So runs my dream; but what am I,
An infant crying in the night.
An infant crying for the light:
And with no language but a cry.

I was musing on these lines as I stepped out into the gentling light this December day. The sun had set. The new moon's sickle touched the top of the California redwood across the lane. The early winter air was fast cooling. "We know not anything," but yet we trust - in what? In all essential goodness at the heart of things that somehow will make things right - "at last, far off!" It is the lament, honest and melancholy, of millions on this globe, a dream, a cry, but yet a hope. But tree, moon, still, we may ask, what really are they? And what is man? And what the thoughts of man on this atom whirling in the infinity of space?

It is perhaps not enough to say that Theosophy has the answers, and points to a universe meshed with purpose and to human beings who in the long, long run will learn to be in harmony with that enduring purpose. Those who have come upon Theosophy, especially in their early years and had a lifetime to reflect on what it unfolds, will have their own inner ever-growing understandings. But for the inquirer, one karmically not yet "knowing," what can one say reassuring and telling enough to make him feel that life really has meaning, that there does exist a Gupta-Vidya, a wisdom-knowledge, that provides a guiding Ariadne's thread that can lead the searcher confidently through the labyrinth of life?

In response to this, a thought, very old and well known but yet somehow ever-new, hovers in my own consciousness. It is this: within the simple is the complex, within that which is nearest us, if we regard it carefully, is the secret of what is far away, within our very selves - if we learn to know ourselves - are the keys to understanding the universes. In ages past the ancient Hermetic maxim expressed it: As above so below, as below so above.

There is a way, it seems to me, of visioning, of really seeing. Seeking to explain this to a class I conducted over some years in Creative Writing, I would put it this way. Put your thumb and forefinger together to make a circle. Catch that spider-web low in the honeysuckle hedge over there. Throw that branch of Torrey pine overtopping the canyon cliff against the flame of sunset. Don't try to imprison the vast horizon. If you do, you get a flat panoramic view, but you don't get a picture you can live with and study and love. So you select. You choose. You capture only what is in your circle. Then you love it into perfection. And you find that [8] within that circle you now see more than you first saw. Within it is tile vast horizon; within it are the heavens; within it is the story of Man.

Now this illustration may not be inapplicable to theosophic study. What, we may ask, is the difference between what some may consider, on the one hand, the abstruse or technical or the "far away," and on the other, what is the simple, the near, and at first easily grasped? The latter, we find, are as deeply significant as the former; and also for the one who "knows," the abstruse is as clear as the seeming simple. What, for example, is karma? Oh, everyone knows what karma is! Do we? Karma, said H. P. Blavatsky, is the ultimate law. What do we know of that ultimate? Is it not clear then that what is exoteric to One, to another is esoteric? The difference lies in the mind of the individual, in one's particular self-made "ring-pass-not," in the ability to see or not to see, to understand or not to understand? Within the circle of finger-and-thumb for one, is the a-b-c of dawning knowledge; for another, the architecture of universes.

But here we should add (parenthetically because it verges on another deeper though not unrelated subject) that in the truly esoteric schools of old, where strict training in discipleship prevailed, there was a distinction between what was "exoteric" and "esoteric," and the Teacher teaching the deeper truths of the universe did so under rules of stringently enforced silence -and for the simple reason that such teaching, which becomes more explicit and specific as the pupil advances, gave direct keys, and therefore power, which could be dangerously misused by those unprepared and unready. A vigilant silence was therefore essential.

Returning now, however, to the thought that impressed us as we stepped out into the evening air, of that wondrous simplicity at the heart of all complexity. Why does it come with such compelling insistence each time the year is dying and the new year is about to be born? Is it a whisper, if only that, of what is the very heart-essence of all religions? Within each one of us, it seems to say, is the sleeping Christ, the unawakened Buddha, the Divine Sun, waiting to be reborn. Tat twam asi. That, the Divine, O learner, O disciple, O child of life, thou, even at this moment, art.

Why is this thought of such immense importance? Because it banishes fear and replaces it with understanding and vision. Fear of alienation or expulsion from the universe haunts man in his early questioning years, preys on his thoughts during life, and becomes an almost unbearable horror as he approaches death. But there is no fear when you know you are a part of the Universe, inseparable from it forever. This is Theosophy's central theme, and like the fugues of the great Bach, its notes can be traced throughout all true theosophical literature. It is the golden thread that binds the multicolored tapestry of all esoteric writing: [9] deep, intricate in scientific and philosophic exposition, but goldenly simple and clear because of this sutratma-pattern: man's essential unity with Nature. What inspiration in moments of darkness this one thought alone gives to the soul faced with the awful sufferings and problems of this land of Myalba! With it, how sustained by courage and brightened by faith become his actions! How filled with inner light, and, at times, spiritual exultation becomes his inner life! And yet a child can in degree understand it; and a Sage remain engrossed by the endless convolutions of thought it offers.

"But what am I?" An infant crying for the light? Nay, the ancient call is: Aham asmi Parabrahman, I am the Boundless, I am the Beyond-Brahman. And that Divine Mystery is in your heart, and at the heart of every being and every point of space. What is the Simple in Nature and what is the Complex? Shall we leave it a question for each to ponder?


[Originally published anonymously in the first issue of Lucifer, London, Vol. 1, September 15, 1887, pp. 46-48.)]

The inner light which guides men to greatness, and makes them noble, is a mystery through all time and must remain so while Time lasts for us; but there come moments, even in the midst of ordinary life, when Time has no hold upon us, and then all the circumstance of outward existence falls away, and we find ourselves face to face with the mystery beyond. In great trouble, in great joy, in keen excitement, in serious illness, these moments come. Afterwards they seem very wonderful, looking back upon them.

What is this mystery, and why is it so veiled, are the burning questions for anyone who has begun to realise its existence. Trouble most often rouses men to the consciousness of it, and forces them to ask these questions when those, whom one has loved better than oneself, are taken away into the formless abyss of the unknown by death, or are changed, by the experiences of life, till they are no longer recognizable as the same; then comes the wild hunger for knowledge. Why is it so? What is it, that surrounds us with a great dim cloud into which all loved things plunge in time and are lost to us, obliterated, utterly taken from us? It is this which makes life so unbearable to the emotional natures, and which develops selfishness in narrow hearts. If there is no certainty and no permanence in life, then it seems to the Egotist, that there is no reasonable course but to attend to one's own affairs, and be content with the happiness of the first person singular. There are many persons sufficiently generous in temperament to wish others were happy also, and who, if [10] they saw any way to do it, would gladly redress some of the existing ills - the misery of the poor, the social evil, the sufferings of the diseased, the sorrow of those made desolate by death - these things the sentimental philanthropist shudders to think of. He does not act because he can do so little. Shall he take one miserable child and give it comfort when millions will be enduring the same fate when that one is dead? The inexorable cruelty of life continues on its giant course, and those who are born rich and healthy live in pleasant places, afraid to think of the horrors life holds within it. Loss, despair, unutterable pain, comes at last, and the one who has hitherto been fortunate is on a level with those to whom misery has been familiarized by a lifetime of experience. For trouble bites hardest when it springs on a new victim. Of course, there are profoundly selfish natures which do not suffer in this sense, which look only for personal comfort and are content with the small horizon visible to one person's sight; for these, there is but little trouble in the world, there is none of the passionate pain which exists in sensitive and poetic natures. The born artist is aware of pain as soon as he is aware of pleasure; he recognizes sadness as a part of human life before it has touched on his own. He has an innate consciousness of the mystery of the ages, that thing stirring within man's soul and which enables him to outlive pain and become great, which leads him on the road to the divine life. This gives him enthusiasm, a superb heroism indifferent to calamity; if he is a poet he will write his heart out, even for a generation that has no eyes or ears for him; if he desires to help others personally, he is capable of giving his very life to save one wretched child from out a million of miserable ones. For it is not his puny personal effort in the world that he considers - not his little show of labour done; what he is conscious of is the over-mastering desire to work with the beneficent forces of super-nature, to become one with the divine mystery, and when he can forget time and circumstances, he is face to face with that mystery. Many have fancied they must reach it by death; but none have come back to tell us that this is so. We have no proof that man is not as blind beyond the grave as he is on this side of it. Has he entered the eternal thought? If not, the mystery is a mystery still.

To one who is entering occultism in earnest, all the trouble of the world seems suddenly apparent. There is a point of experience when father and mother, wife and child, become indistinguishable, and when they seem no more familiar or friendly than a company pf strangers. The one dearest of all may be close at hand and unchanged, and yet is as far as if death had come between. Then all distinction between pleasure and pain, love and hate, have vanished. A melancholy, keener than that felt by a man in his first fierce experience of grief, overshadows the soul. It is the pain of the struggle to break the shell in which man has prisoned himself. Once broken then there is no more [11] pain; all ties are severed, all personal demands are silenced forever. The man has forced himself to face the great mystery, which is now a mystery no longer, for he has become part of it. It is essentially the mystery of the ages, and these have no longer any meaning for him to whom time and space and all other limitations are but passing experiences. It has become to him a reality, profound, indeed, because it is bottomless, wide, indeed, because it is limitless. He has touched on the greatness of life, which is sublime in its impartiality and effortless generosity. He is friend and lover to all those living beings that come within his consciousness, not to the one or two chosen ones only - which is indeed only an enlarged selfishness. While a man retains his humanity, it is certain that one or two chosen ones will give him more pleasure by contact, than all the rest of the beings in the Universe and all the heavenly host; but he has to remember and recognize what this preference is. It is not a selfish thing which has to be crushed out, if the love is the love that gives; freedom from attachments is not a meritorious condition in itself. The freedom needed is not from those who cling to you, but from those to whom you cling. The familiar phrase of the lover "I cannot live without you" must be words which cannot be uttered, to the occultist. If he has but one anchor, the great tides will sweep him away into nothingness. But the natural preference which must exist in every man for a few persons is one form of the lessons of Life. By contact with these other souls he has other channels by which to penetrate to the great mystery. For every soul touches it, even the darkest. Solitude is a great teacher, but society is even greater. It is so hard to find and take the highest part of those we love, that in the very difficulty of the search there is a serious education. We realize when making that effort, far more clearly what it is that creates the mystery in which we live, and makes us so ignorant. It is the swaying, vibrating, never-resting desires of the animal soul in man. The life of this part of man's nature is so vigorous and strongly developed from the ages during which he has dwelt in it, that it is impossible to still it so as to obtain contact with the noble spirit. This constant and confusing life, this ceaseless occupation with the trifles of the hour, this readiness in surface emotion, this quickness to be pleased, amused or distressed, is what baffles our sight and dulls our inner senses. Till we can use these the mystery remains in its Sphinx-like silence. [12]


Montague A. Machell

"To them thus devoted to me, who worship me with love, I give that mental devotion by which they come to me. For them do I, out of my compassion, standing within their hearts, destroy the darkness which springs from ignorance by the brilliant light of spiritual discernment." - Bhagavad-Gita.

In the interest of rewarding Theosophical analysis, a definite distinction must be made between the terms "EXISTENCE" and "LIFE," because, for the Theosophist, Existence has to do with encounters with material and temporal phenomena, mostly visible, tangible and definable. Life, on the other hand, is the unseen flowering of an invisible, intangible, undefinable Spirit, an aspect of Universal Spirit, or THE ONE. Existence is dependent on material phenomena manifesting in Time and Space, in whose presence alone it can operate. Life is the invisible, unchanging Reality that slowly refines the material phenomena of Existence.

Existence is a state inaugurated at birth and terminated by death. Life antedates birth and is untouched by death. The "progress" of Existence proceeds against the unchanging background of Life. That progress takes place in the environments of Time and Matter, utilizing them variously, now actively, now subjectively, yet ever for a purpose above and beyond Existence. The limitations of merely bodily Existence are innate in it, and must manifest so long as the personality accepts them. Only upon the conscious assertion of the immortal SELF in Life can these limitations begin to be transcended. In this sense Life is release from the imprisonment of Existence. To the extent that the incarnating individuality demands the release of Life in place of the imprisonment of Existence, the latter gives place to the former.

The summation of success in any incarnation is dependent upon the degree to which a man insists upon Life, disdaining mere Existence. Where Life is singly and uncompromisingly chosen, all limitations can be overcome since Life is universal and eternal, to be experienced alone by the universal, immortal SELF. In this sense Life is a rejection of Existence; the ultimate object of Life is to outgrow Existence. The spiritual Reality that is man, is a native of Life, fulfilling a program of growth completely independent of Existence; how completely alive he is may he measured by his degree of independence.

Clearly then, Living is related to Existence largely in terms of rejection of the latter. Once having discovered the limitations of Existence, a man's destiny is a progressive transcendence of them. To say "I LIVE" is to say "I have cast off Existence! I have perceived that [13] when entering upon Existence as a mortal personality, I exchanged universality for temporality, thereby becoming a lesser self." My object on earth in Time is to affirm that native universality of Life through which the limitations of Existence can be done away with. The extent to which I embody Life is accurately expressed in terms of my transcendence. I am alive to the extent that I have regained the universality native to me upon entering Existence. Accepted mortality is accepted diminution; Life is a fearless affirmation of native universality. It is my right and privilege, if not my actual obligation, to unfold limitlessly in terms of Life. Only so far as I glimpse and demand limitlessness am I worthy of Life, and actually experiencing it. Existence is the trap set for the SELF on earth, escape from which is in Life alone. The alternative to that escape is death, however apparently "alive" a man may be. It is to be feared that this earth holds multitudes of "walking dead"; they are "dead," but they won't lie down!

Out of the unheard music of universal unfoldment, timeless, selfless, immaterial, was born this incarnating entity. Life is a conscious return to that mystical realm of untrammeled universality wherein alone man's Reality manifests, Existence being the play-acting of the temporal, material personality of a single incarnation. In the deepest sense Life is not an escape from Existence. Rather is it a grim, uncompromising overcoming of its limitations by an uninterrupted affirmation of the Timeless reality of the SELF. Existence is the portal through which man passes to a mastery of his own spiritual reality.

Confronted with the gross crudities of Existence, Life reveals itself as an eternal mystery with its own sacred geometry and rationality, a rationality that only Buddhi-Manas (Soul-Reason) in man can master. To define and measure Life in terms of Existence alone is to reject rationality completely. Man is only "alive" so far as the eye of Spirit has achieved vision capable of penetrating beyond the limits of Time. He is here on earth that he may employ Existence as a means of liberation. His goal is to TRANSCEND!

His greatest peril is to allow the idea of compromise to taint his thinking. Life is an uncompromising rejection of the puppetry of Existence. It is conscious, uninterrupted growth in Reality, a growth in which the SELF creates the conditions and the program. "I and my Father are one," i.e., I and Reality (everlasting) are one. Because the essential nature of man (his Individuality) survives incarnation after incarnation, and is in that sense deathless, it is natural that in the inmost heart of him there should arise a yearning for inexhaustible love, inexhaustible beauty, inexhaustible joy. And, since there is in man this eternal seed of yearning, so there must be in his spiritual destiny on the plane of Life, an actually discoverable and attainable bliss such as the heart hungers for.

It is purely a matter of choice, clear and uncompromising: which [14] shall it be, Existence in Time, or Life in Eternity? To every man comes, sooner or later, the choice between the passional prerequisites of mortal Existence and the inexhaustible bliss of Spiritual Realization. Each of us is eventually called upon to settle for the one or the other. We cannot have both. In its final analysis this is a choice between life and death; for the "lesser" spells involvement in a lifeless puppetry, fragmentary and inconstant, whilst the "greater" is timelessly realized REALITY!

That which ties us to Existence is the personality of Time, which thinks, reasons and reckons in intervals of duration. Because those intervals are fragmentary, man seeks to intensify each illusory moment to the utmost, that it may appropriate that inexhaustible experience his heart yearns for. But, because in this compromise the puppet self is subjecting mortality to tensions this earth-body was never designed to undergo, its vulnerability manifests to the extent that normal physical existence is undermined and the bodily incarnation is needlessly curtailed ... and nothing gained! He who would experience infinitely must give himself up to the Infinite - choose Life in place of Existence.

This can be a sublime choice of sublime values. It can reveal to man a new aspect of Freedom - release from all limitations - Life inexhaustibly triumphant!


L. Gordon Plummer

Tornados tear across the southern states; raging blizzards paralyze the Midwest. Earthquakes demolish cities in Japan, Turkey, South America. Floods sweep away homes; fires raze hotels, warehouses and schools.

Wars threaten the stability of Africa, the Middle East, Asia; strikes threaten to paralyze entire nations; political unrest is everywhere. Between devastation from national causes and the danger of global disruption brought on by man - where will it all lead? Will it ever end?

Consider first the natural disasters. Are the tornados, the crippling winters, the earthquakes and the floods, are all of these in the process of changing the Earth itself, terrible as these things are? Not at all. Even a superficial understanding of geology makes clear to us that it is the exceedingly slow processes of nature that cause the real and lasting changes in the makeup of the Earth. Consider the strange and fantastic shapes of the buttes on the deserts of Arizona and New Mexico. These were formed through the processes of erosion, the work of which is to be measured in only fractions of an inch in each century. Slowly, incredibly slowly, the particles of wind-blown sand eat [15] away at the rocky formations, until we have today these natural wonders. Consider the gradual motions of the continental plates as we are learning in the study of tectonics. If present researches lead to the truth, we learn that through hundreds of thousands of years great land masses have shifted, and by the inexorable pressures that they exert upon one another, great mountain ranges have been formed. Again, by the never-ending work of wind and water, mountains once stood upon vast areas which are now flat tablelands. The vast landscapes now occupied by the Grand Canyon and the surrounding countryside were once under the waters of all inland sea. All of these changes have gone on heedless of the sudden violent storms and earthquakes that are essentially, by comparison, temporary local disturbances. Is it not a source of wonder when we come to realize that it is just those gradual processes of Nature, which go entirely unfelt by us, that are the basic causes of the changes which mark the slow growth of the planet?

And so it leads us into another line of thought. Is it possible then, by contrast with the inner growth of man, which extends through the cycles of incarnation after incarnation, from the forgotten past on to the unpredictable future, that the wars, the famines, the strikes and the unrest are temporary crises? They are terrible indeed in terms of human woe, but temporary nonetheless when viewed from the vantage point of the great cycles we study, in the teachings about the Globe Chains and the Circulations of the Cosmos.

Then, from the racial, let us move on to the individual. Each human life has its joys and its sorrows. We all make mistakes, and we have our minor victories over our limitations. These are critical in the span of one life, and each lifetime is important when viewed in the larger context, for each is a link in a chain of lives through which slowly - ever so slowly, perhaps, the inner man is learning and growing. Does it not give us reason to hope, when we learn that it is just this slow life by life growth that is the real and permanent criterion, even though we may be totally unaware of it? And what grander hope can be offered to humanity than the knowledge that we are not at the beck and call of fate, but that in keeping with compassionate Nature's laws we cannot hold back our ultimate progress. Quite the reverse, we have control over it. The lives of the greatest members of the human race, whom we regard as our Teachers, prove to us that what they have accomplished, we also can accomplish in time. It seems that there are three major keys to our growth - Self-Knowledge, Spiritual Will and all ever growing sense of oneness with all life. For just as in Divine Nature, so it is in the highest part of ourselves, compassion is the essence of the Inner God.

Indeed, still waters run deep. [16]


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.

Following are the chapter titles:
I. Nature the Mighty Mother (Beyond the Veil of Visible Things. A Knowledge Evoked from Within. The Silence and its Song).
II. Recollections (On the Banks of the Merrimac. The Civil War. East Side New York. India and the Teacher's Words. Egypt and the Tomb of the Pharaohs).
Ill. Peace and the Fallacy of War.
IV. To the Student: Keynotes on the path.
- 1 (First Thoughts Upon Waking. Practical Steps on the Way. Self-Directed Effort. The Middle Way. Last Thoughts Before Retiring).
V. To the Student: Keynotes on the Path - 2 (The Sacredness of the Moment and the Day. The Beaming Thought. The Teacher's Work. The Mystic Path).
VI. Why I am a Theosophist (What is Theosophy? A Broader Conception of Deity. The Teaching of Reincarnation -Another Chance. Right Thoughts about Karma. Death and Rebirth).
VII. Basic Principles of True Education (The Perfect Balance of All the Faculties. Music - and the Harmony Within. Drama, its Rightful Place: The Mystery-Drama).
VIII. Foreshadowings.
IX. Invocation.
Appendices: Theosophy and Some of the Vital Problems of the Day. Letters from Egypt. Chronology.

Order from Point Loma Publications, Inc.,P.O. Box 9966, San Diego, CA 92109.
Softbound, 168 pages, $6.75.