RE: Origin of Evil --- On Devotion -- Some Ideas and Thoughts.
Jul 10, 2006 05:12 PM
by W.Dallas TenBroeck
7/10/2006 5:08 PM
Dear Mel and Friends:
To answer each point might prove repetitive. Allow me to offer that which I
found was taught by THEOSOPHY as a basis for such answers -- so you might
On Devotion -- Some Ideas and Thoughts.
In the Bhagavad Gita, Krishna speaks at the beginning of the third chapter
of devotion and of the two schools of philosophy that consider it. There
is, he says, the Sankhya, the contemplative and speculative School; and, as
a contrast, the Yoga School wherein devotion is performed through action.
Krishna states that no being in the Universe is ever totally inactive.
Wisdom, or right thought, ought to govern and produce righteous acts. The
whole of Nature is composed of three cooperative and interactive qualities,
and, to be devoted, one has to understand and then control these. These
three are truth or purity, action or desire, and indifference or inertia.
The Spirit of Life, Light and Truth stands at one end, and matter or form
animated by the power of desire is at the other. These two are united
centrally by intelligence. This intelligence or understanding has, by way of
a contrast to which its is intimately joined: desire and passion. We
however note that there is in us a power of perception which is always
detached and separate from either of these extremes. It sees them both as
objective to it.
In every human there is seen to reside a "Perceiver," or, a "Witness." It,
detached, sees these contrasts, and remains as a Spectator, unmoved by the
action of either of these. Devotion is the employment of right motive,
which is based on a knowledge of Nature's laws and program. The wise
individual is never hopeful of any specific result arising from his
unselfish acts. Therefore devotion is that thought and action which is
directed at providing for the needs of others. It is unselfishness and
benevolence. It is also a knowledge of those laws that apply at that time
at that place and to the specific individuals involved.
Mr. Judge on p. 64 of Notes on the Bhagavad Gita advises Arjuna "to become
In his "Letters That Have Helped Me," p. 111, we find him writing:
" Devotion and aspiration will...help to bring about a proper attitude of
mind, and to raise the student to a higher plane; also they secure...help
which is unseen by him, for devotion and aspiration put the student into a
condition in which aid can be given to him, though he may, as yet, be
unconscious of it." WQJ Letters, p. 111
[ see also Judge Letters, p. 38, on devotion ]
This hints at a matter of attention: to consider more carefully events
In our lives, is there any evidence that such "aid" already being received ?
Are others being helped ? Are we able to help them ?
In 1888, from Ostende, HPB sent to some of her students in London, a letter
in which is a hint on this matter. She indicates there that Adept influence
and presence could be noticed by those attentive to unusual coincidences,
and curious, or subtle events in the students' life and being.
Mr. Judge draws our attention to the relationship between heedlessness and
attention in strong words. He says "I call freedom from heedlessness
This "attention" can be developed so as to remain aware and attentive
regardless of the condition of the physical body, whether it is "awake," or
"asleep." It is a condition of continuous consciousness ( page 77, Notes on
the Bhagavad Gita). Later on (p. 98-100), he uses the phrase "the One
Consciousness." And, quoting from an ancient text, he adds "it pierces up
and down through all the states or planes of Being, and serves to uphold the
memory--whether complete or incomplete--of each state's experiences."
Bringing these two ideas together, we find that HPB wrote in The Secret
"...the evolution of Spirit into matter could never have been achieved; nor
would it have received its first impulse, had not the bright Spirits
sacrificed their own respective super-ethereal essences to animate the man
of clay, by endowing each of his inner principles with a portion, or rather
a reflection of that essence." SD II 273
[ additional suggestive references: SD I 210,
SD II 79-80, 281,
Transactions of the Blavatsky Lodge, pp. 23-4 ]
These concepts may also serve as a key to the understanding of the Gayatri
" Unveil, O Pushan, the face of the True Sun, now concealed in a golden
vase, that I may see my whole duty on my way back to the Sacred Seat." (
WQJ Articles, I. 583) and, perhaps, thereby, grasp with greater certainty
the concept of the "god (Atman, the Higher Self) within."
It is but a step, to perceive that every one of our fellows, and in fact all
beings have the same animating "ray" from the one spirit at the core of
their being. They too, are innately "bright Spirits." Thence, we may
further extend our vision, to secure and exercise clear vision (true
clairvoyance). This is shielded from our use at present by the gross matter
of our physical bodies, and the focus of our waking consciousness being
continually and voluntarily fixed on the separateness of our psycho-physical
It may be for this reason that Mr. Judge indicates that the true "Yogi" acts
on behalf of his brother when he sees in his mind the need for actions that
are necessary to be done. True clairvoyance provides for this. The power
of the need brings forth (under the laws of Karma) right assistance.
We are told that the Spirit--Atman-- needs as "vehicle," Buddhi--wisdom--in
order to act through Manas--Higher Mind. HPB states in The Secret Doctrine,
Vol. II, p. 79-80, that some of the Egos now working through humanity are
"returning Nirvanees" from earlier Manvantaras. These are exemplars of the
higher, the moral Mind in action, that which lives and works with karma.
It has, because of its vow to assist all beings, to live, work and view
life's efforts through the agency of the embodied mind, the "Lower Manas."
Thus we have before us a key to th mystery of the "two Egos" in man. The
immortal God and the developing "god."
When operating through the psychic nature, this mind faculty is sometimes
referred to as Kama-Manas, when it allows itself to become involved in the
toils of passion and desire. It then becomes clear that for the perception
of any spiritual truth, the lower Manas needs to thoroughly understand all
motives, and be an honest "interpreter." In Isis Unveiled, Vol. I, H.P.B.
speaks of the "PTR" or "petroma" as the nature of such an "interpreter" in
the Mysteries--between the Hierophant and the aspirant. There she indicates
that this condition prevails everywhere in Nature where the more advanced
serve the lesser as instructors, and assist them in their developing of
their own self-consciousness. [Isis I, xxxiii, II 92-3, 392.]
Mr. Judge discusses the Bhakti-path of devotion--which in the outer world is
pursued by many with a heart entirely devoted to righteousness, but without
much thought. Such a pure inner urge will eventually lead to the great
In our way of life, do we not find that the use of the devotional "Path" to
the "Goal" may abridge the time to reach the goal of "perfection," as we add
the active mental faculty of purified understanding and attention to our
Further, should these not be augmented by discrimination tutored by
spiritual intuition ? Is this not one of the reasons why a sincere student
may spend some time daily, in examining his nature, his capacities, the
action of the "three qualities" within himself; and finally, his own
Universal and spiritual ideas, as Krishna observes, can then be seen
springing up spontaneously from within, when we act to quiet the lower mind
and the "thousand chords of desire."
Should this not be considered a further proof of the indivisible fundamental
Self within? If we have the capacity to se examine our minds, our hearts,
our feelings and desires, then we are none of those. We are, basically,
the unmoved Spectator, the Perceiver, the Examiner, and all the rest are our
perceptions and inclinations. We observe them and can decide to alter and
change them. It is this individual spiritual power, the will, that enables
us to progress.
Certain "ceremonies," "rites" and "rules" were at one time designed and
instituted to assist those who became aware of the nature and power of their
true spiritual selves. These were originally designed to take advantage of
the "power of the vow," of the devotional method, which kept the vision of
the aspirant focused on the Supreme Self of all creatures, the "Krishna"
within himself, and the law of the cycles whereby the impressions of his
early thoughts and actions (karma) returned to him.
Could the results produced not depend on the quality of the motive? Cyclic
energies would seem to play a part in this. And, this is what organized,
and authoritarian sects take advantage of as they depend on most of their
adherents not inquiring too closely into the real nature of their own being
and inquiring into the timing of these facts.
If we view the "Three Qualities" [Sattva, Rajas and Tamas] and consider them
to be each polarized, or dual, then we have the 6 + 1 = 7 "principles" of
Nature and see that the Real Man--the One Consciousness--being the 7th,
unites all together (Gita Notes, p. 98-100). The physical body is based on
the astral body. Prana, the life principle, serves as a basis for the Kamic
nature, the passions and desires, that flow through us. The Manas serves as
a base for wisdom: Buddhi; and Atman, the "ray" of and one with the Spirit
presides over all. In reality it is the only "principle," and the rest are
its various vehicles. [ WQJ Art. I, p. 299 ]
Over these 7, which constitute the actor in the field of matter, may we not
see brooding the primal Trinity, the "One-in-Three" reflection of the
ABSOLUTE ONE. The totality is thus 10, the "perfect number" of Pythagoras.
[The "3 Qualities," are detailed in Gita, pp 100-4, 115-118.] Applying the
principles that are able to refine every aspect of the lower nature, we find
in the 18th Chapter (p. 129) Krishna states: "abandoning egotism,
arrogance, violence, vanity, desire, anger, pride and possession, with
calmness ever present, a man is fitted to be the Supreme Being."
Should we not understand from these words that "Krishna" means: a Mahatma,
a purified individuality--a "Great Soul," which, as a being-unit, is for
ever a conscious and responsibly active part of the ONE UNIVERSAL BEING ?
This implies that there are further stages of growth and responsibility for
all Mahatmas in the general progressive and infinite scheme of development.
Historically, HPB writes of the period when, from Central Asia the early
Aryans invaded India (about a million years ago: S D I 270; S D II 768
), and those became the pupils of the Raja-Rishis, the Kingly-Sages,
individuals who ruled as wise, and spiritual Kshatriyas. Of these Janaka
was one, and Krishna belonged to this lineage.
Our "mind" is not the ultimate "we." The "power of mind and the real
meaning of meditation" are to be understood (p. 65-6) and used if we are to
rediscover "the real root of [our] being." If we use the mind to meditate,
we are other than the mind.
Should we not say that we use as a primary correlation, the will?. We set
it in motion and direct its work, to direct the tools of this plane of
living. This includes the "brain-mind" which is able to effect this work
for and within its own nature--that which we call our personality.
This work seems ideally designed, to assist those "tools" of our psychic,
mental and physical nature in widening and deepening their intelligence and
perception. This sensitivity leads us to perceive the true nature of
brotherhood. Mr. Judge gives us a wide and complete view of this in his
Ocean of Theosophy, p. 60.
Aspiring to improve our understanding, and approaching this from the point
of view of embodied experience, the highest outpost of which is in our lower
Manas (embodied mind), would this not be what Krishna means by asking Arjuna
to invoke the "mysterious power of meditation" (p. 66), which, when first
seen in operation, is often assumed, passively, to be the power of the Karma
of our past ? Is it not this that we are to work in and on, so that we may
adjust and purify it ? If we are able to direct it, then we are on the
"path" to become, eventually, a "Master of Mediation and of Devotion."
This cannot be done without strain and reaction generated by the habits set
up us in the past of this life and of earlier lives: "...for the whole load
of ancient sin rushes to the front and the events succeed each other
rapidly; the strain is terrific, and the whole life fabric groans and
rocks." ( Letters That Have helped Me, p. 21. ) This situation is that
which enables us to clear up the old karma of "unfinished business." It is
natural that in our embodied mind consciousness we find we become fearful,
and may seek to avoid the trials and changes needed. But if these are not
met and mastered, it is only natural to anticipate that they may return
later in a more terrible form. We cannot escape our choices and the effects
we started. But we can balance and adjust them.
Most of this past Karma cannot be adjusted in one life, so there is a
"hold-over" to the next, when the bodily apparatus is reformed in which much
of that which has been lying in wait can be balanced. This involves for us,
the need to develop and exercise patience, calmness and a willingness to
accept all that comes with a minimum of strain or anxiety--these are ideas
Mr. Judge develops in many places in Letters That Have Helped Me.
To withstand this assault (which comes in the form of a battle from his own
"lower nature"), Krishna advises Arjuna to practice dispassion,
non-attachment, and never to be anxious, or hope for a reward. As we
progress, have we not noticed that we have been helped by old
companionships, and we often assist one another, or find ourselves assisted
with ideas and views, sometimes "in mysterious ways" that evoke an increased
appreciation of their worth ?
If abnegation (a surrender of self-interest) is difficult to understand,
some thought and meditation on these concepts may make it easier. It is the
embodied mind, us as kama-manasic natures, that have by reasoning to assure
ourselves of our continuity and base in immortality.
The next concept to grasp and hold is brotherhood. Every being in the
universe around us, supports us--our food, the air and water, the earth, our
friends and the whole environment is part of this support, which is often
unrecognized. Life and living are evidence of the cooperative nature of all
Nature and Life. No one can be "an island unto himself," since without this
cooperation we could not exist in a body. Is this realization not part of
our "life's meditation ?" This is universal brotherhood in action. Is this
the universal significance of devotion?
From: Mel Woods
Sent: Sunday, July 09, 2006 12:31 AM
Subject: RE: Origin of Evil
After thinking on the subject "Origen of Evil", evil
being the polar opposite of good and only differing in degree, I first
thought the answer was obvious and that was at the moment humans evolved to
the level of conscience choice. But was I close to the truth and if so
when was that moment?
Was it evil for a cave-man to take a woman or food?
At what point were we as humans responsible for our actions?
Was there an apple involved? Was Judas evil?
It seems the answer isn't as obvious to myself as I had thought and maybe
the doctor that had introduced me to this life with a sharp spank wasn't as
evil as I had thought and it was only
Karma saying "welcome back". As for myself I can only say I am where I am
at because that's where I went!
grace to all
[Back to Top]
Dedicated to the Theosophical Philosophy and its Practical Application