RE: Animals and Humans
Feb 01, 2006 05:54 PM
by W.Dallas TenBroeck
2/1/2006 5:12 PM
1 A "form" or "adaptation" does not always signify the level of a
resident CONSCIOUSNESS or the INTELLIGENCE that has organized such a form.
2. Atoms, molecules, anatomic and physiological structures are
interchangeable over long or short periods. What are the laws that oversee
3. What defines the INTELLIGENCE which employs a formative
life-energy to devise a "form" for its use ?
4. Are there possibly several levels of evolution?
1 Purpose of EVOLUTION as a whole? A "GRAND PLAN ?"
2 The over-all INTELLIGENCE. [Successive "days and
nights" of manifestation ?]
3 Classes of cooperative and interactive INTELLIGENCES
4 A DESIGNER -- which may also be a PERCEIVER.
5 Formative (design. plan) of electro-magnetic ? or of
"life" force ?
6 Intelligence of cooperative but radically different
cells to form "ORGANS?"
7 " of each collaborating cell-form.
8 " of each "
9 " " atom
10 What happens to the result [sum-total] of any one
evolutionary period ?
From: Michael Forster
Sent: Tuesday, January 31, 2006 11:52 PM
Subject: Re: Animals and Humans
Hi G and Others,
This is a topic I have given much thought to, so I would like to share those
Creating a heirarchy going from minerals-plants-animals-humans-and so on
comes across as a 19th Century classification system 19th Century thinkers
could grasp. However it seems as though it was a classification system that
should not be taken literally - which many thinkers have since done. On the
surface it would seem obvious that a rock is "lower" than a plant, which in
turn is lower than an animal etc etc. But if we look at the relative role
each physical element plays they are each beautifully adapted and "evolved"
to their purpose. The best example I know of this relativity, and something
derived from my own personal experience, is the attitude taken towards
placental and marsupial mammals. It has been a long held view that marsupial
mammals are "lower" on the evolution scale than placental mammals - this
view is held mainly due to the fact that placentals seem more intelligent
than marsupials. But the fact is to maintain a brain - that is to have
intelligence to hunt and avoid being hunted - is biologically very
expensive. Marsupials exist in an extremely nutrient and resource poor
environment and therefore evolution has selected for organisms that can
conserve energy, not expend it. So we find in the fossil record that way
back when marsupials and placentals co-existed in a resource poor
enviornment, however marsupials won out and placentals became extinct - the
placentals were evolutionary "inferior".
So this heirarchical concept that exists in theosophy - particularly when it
is used with human races - I believe was created to convey a complex idea
and their was no initial conceit. However, the literal interpretation of the
heirarchy does suggest that humans are being conceitful (or more
specifically, Anglo-Saxon humans are being particularly conceitful).
Gerald Schueler wrote:
The following quotes were in a recent post by Dallas, I presume that they
are by W Q Judge:
"Only the perfected animal can cross the threshold of the next higher, or
the human plane, and as he does so there shines upon him the ray from the
suprahuman plane. Therefore, as the dawn of humanity illumines the animal
plane, and as a guiding star lures the Monad to higher consciousness, so
the dawn of divinity illumines the  human plane, luring the monad to
the supra-human plane of consciousness. "
Comment: First of all, I do not believe for one moment that living beings
are "perfected" in any way. This kind of word usage is based on the
assumption of evolutionary development as observed and interpreted by
human beings. In fact, the suggestion that humans are "higher" than animals
is itself an unwarrented predjudice. Humans have a more developed manas,
but thats about the only real difference.
Why does Theosophy suggest that only human beings are lured to higher
planes of consciousness? I see this as conceit, a conceit that was
especially strong in the atmosphere of HPB's time but that is weak today.
"This is neither more nor less than the philosophical and metaphysical
aspect of the law of evolution."
Comment: The "law of evolution" is a mayavic illusion. It is a conventional
reality based on the observations and interpretations of human beings.
Evolution does not exist conditionally or ultimately, so where is this
"law" that we keep talking about but in our own human mind?
"Man has not one principle more than the tiniest insect; he is, however,
"the vehicle of a fully developed Monad, self-conscious and deliberately
following its own line of progress, whereas in the insect, and even the
higher animal, the higher triad of principles is absolutely dormant." The
original Monad has, therefore, locked within it the potentiality of
I see the above as a human predjudice that is based on human
conceit. The notion of man's supremacy over animals was commonplace
knowledge in HPB's day, and she ran with it as she did with LaPlacian
thinking. The suggestion that the higher three principles are dormant in
animals and not in humans is such a conceit that I have a hard time
discussing it without getting emotional. Atma-buddhi is no more dormant in
animals than in people. Manas is more dormant in animals than people, and
this fact is the only real difference between an animal and a human being.
Lets face it, the three higher principles are just as dormant in Joe
Sixpack as they are in most animals.
Tibetan Buddhism separates living beings into six realms and orders/ranks
them from the "lowest" to the "highest" as hell beings, pretas or hungry
ghosts, animals, humans, asauras, amd devas. In this sense animals are
separate from humans, and humans are "higher" than animals, and I am sure
that this is where HPB got the idea. But this same occult source also
teaches that we can reincarnate into any one of these six realms at any
time. The "door" that closes to the animal kingdom that HPB talks about is
not found anywhere in eastern occultism or magic.
It is not a stretch to see where HPB got her "devachan" from. Most human
beings after death enter the deva relam as a god and remain there for
thousands of years. But some enter the other realms as well. Theosophists
tend to think that we all go to devachan and nowhere else. Not so.
Just some thoughts.
PS My comments here are following Tibetan Buddhism, which HPB borrowed and
then added her own elaborations. This shows, I think, the nature of how we
make assumptions and interpretations. Whatever the truth of the matter,
evolution is a conventional reality and exists only in the minds of human
HPB in the SECRET DOCTRINE (1888) explains from the first that the book:
'ESOTERIC BUDHISM' was not popular Buddhism, nor was it limited to the
esoteric teachings of Gautama Buddha's Occult Metaphysics (this would
include Mahayana Buddhism).
As grand as the latter where, they were only a part of a much larger and
more ancient philosophy called the WISDOM RELIGION which dates back through
the "uninterrupted record covering thousands of generations of Seers" to the
Divine Instructors in the Third Root Race. (SECRET DOCTRINE, I 272-3)
" the records we mean to place before the reader embrace the esoteric tenets
of the whole world since the beginning of our humanity, and Buddhistic
occultism occupies therein only its legitimate place, and no more. Indeed,
the secret portions of the "Dan" or Jan-na" ("Dhyan") of Gautama's
metaphysics -- grand as they appear to one unacquainted with the tenets of
the Wisdom Religion of antiquity -- are but a very small portion of the
whole." SD I xx
HPB's views and those of the Masters on what they meant by "Buddhist" and
"Buddhism" (Budhi-ism) when applied to themselves and the WISDOM RELIGION
are consistent throughout all their writings. Thus what we find in THE
SECRET DOCTRINE, and the KEY TO THEOSOPHY is identical to what she wrote in
her first great work -- ISIS UNVEILED. (1877) It is also what the Mahatma
states in his letters to Mr. A P. Sinnett. In ISIS, HPB says:
"We can assert, with entire plausibility, that there is not one of all these
sects -- Kabalism, Judaism, and our present Christianity included - but
sprung from the two main branches of that one mother-trunk, the once
universal religion, which antedated the Vedaic ages -- we speak of that
prehistoric Buddhism which merged later into Brahmanism." ISIS II
"When we use the term Buddhists, we do not mean to imply by it either the
exoteric Buddhism instituted by the followers of Gautama-Buddha, nor the
modern Buddhistic religion, but the secret philosophy of Sakyamuni, which in
its essence is certainly identical with the ancient wisdom-religion of the
sanctuary, the pre-Vedic Brahmanism." (ISIS II 142)
This is repeated in the MAHATMA LETTERS to Mr. A. P. SINNETT:
"Many prefer to call themselves Buddhists not because the word attaches
itself to the ecclesiastical system built upon the basic ideas of our Lord
Gautama Buddha's philosophy, but because of the Sanskrit word "Buddhi" --
wisdom, enlightenment; and as a silent protest to the vain rituals and empty
ceremonials, which have in too many cases been productive of the greatest
calamities." (Mahatma Letter, No 85, -- Barker Ed., p. 298)
Brahmanism is far older than the Buddhist Religion of Gautama Buddha. HPB
refers to some Brahmans dating the Vedas at 2100 BC. In the SECRET DOCTRINE
she states the Rig Veda is tens of thousands of years earlier than Greek
Literature, the 'unwritten Vedas' are even earlier.
".the Veda of the earliest Aryans, before it was written, went forth into
every nation of the Atlanto-Lemurians, and sowed the first seeds of all the
now existing old religions." (SD II 483)
So it is not the Buddhist Religion founded around 500 B C that she is
referring to in her passage above - that Buddhism "which merged later into
Brahmanism", "which antedated the Vedaic ages". She is referring again to
the WISDOM RELIGION.
As for the term "Buddhist" which is often misunderstood and misused in
relation to HPB and the Masters, she wrote in 1877 in ISIS that emphasis on
the Sanskrit word "Buddhi" meaning "wisdom, enlightenment" is the key to
understanding what HPB and the Masters are referring to.
By Buddhism, therefore, we mean that religion signifying literally THE
DOCTRINE OF WISDOM, and which by many ages antedates the metaphysical
philosophy of Siddhartha Sakyamuni. And, it is identical to what HPB
restated some years later in the SECRET DOCTRINE, namely that we need to
"...the difference between "Buddhism" -- the religious system of ethics
preached by the Lord Gautama, and named after his title of Buddha, "the
Enlightened" -- and Budha, "Wisdom," or knowledge (Vidya), the faculty of
cognizing, from the Sanskrit root "Budh," to know." (SD I xviii)
Unfortunately those people who state that HPB and the Masters were Buddhists
tend to conveniently ignore those qualifying statements by HPB and the
Master himself. Some say HPB must have been a follower of Buddha's
ecclesiastical system because she and Olcott took Pansil. But what Olcott
says to qualify this event is entirely in agreement with HPB's above
published views. DTB
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