RE: promulgation of theosophy
Aug 03, 2006 04:50 AM
by W.Dallas TenBroeck
8/3/2006 4:17 AM
RE: Promulgation Of Theosophy
Consider these ideas -- not as "final," but as something to work on.
FUNDAMENTAL THEOSOPHICAL IDEAS Or, are they universal?
Among many ideas brought forward through the theosophical movement there are
three which should never be lost sight of. Not speech, but thought, really
rules the world; so, if these three ideas are good let them be rescued again
and again from oblivion.
The first idea is, that there is a great Cause - in the sense of an
enterprise - called the Cause of Sublime Perfection and Human Brotherhood.
This rests upon the essential unity of the whole human family, and is a
possibility because sublimity in perfectness and actual realization of
brotherhood on every plane of being are one and the same thing. All efforts
by Rosicrucian, Mystic, Mason and Initiate are efforts toward the
convocation in the hearts and minds of men of the Order of Sublime
The second idea is, that man is a being who may be raised up to perfection,
to the stature of the Godhead, because he himself is God incarnate. This
noble doctrine was in the mind of Jesus, no doubt, when he said that we must
be perfect even as is the father in heaven. This is the idea of human
perfectibility. It will destroy the awful theory of inherent original sin
which has held and ground down the western Christian nations for centuries.
The third idea is the illustration, the proof, the high result of the
others. It is, that the Masters - those who have reached up to what
perfection this period of evolution and this solar system will allow - are
living, veritable facts, and not abstractions cold and distant. They are, as
our old H.P.B. [Helena Petrovna Blavatsky] so often said, living men. And
she said, too, that a shadow of woe would come to those who should say they
were not living facts, who should assert that "the Masters descend not to
this plane of ours." The Masters as living facts and high ideals will fill
the soul with hope, will themselves help all who wish to raise the human
Let us not forget these three great ideas.
William Q. Judge, [The IRISH THEOSOPHIST, Vol. III, Feb. 1895; p. 73]
SYMBOLISM OF UNITY IN DIVERSITY
In the BHAGAVAD GITA
[Krishna is the Wise Teacher, and represents Atma-Buddhi within everyone.
Arjuna is the Mind/soul, the pupil.]
The DIVINE FORM includes all FORMS
"The eternal God" is the Perceiver [the Higher Self] within the divine form;
the "face . . . turned in all directions" is the "divine form," which like a
spherical mirror reflects all things.
All differentiations of substance occur within the divine form, and each
differentiation necessitates its own peculiar modes of expression and
appearances, corresponding to "mouths," "eyes," and "wonderful forms."
It has been said of old that "the Deity geometrizes." All forms evolve from
>From the "point" whose center is everywhere and circumference nowhere, a
radiation equal in all directions begins, and establishes a circumference; a
sphere within which the activity of the "point" is particularly confined.
The "point" spreading out horizontally becomes a diameter dividing the
sphere into positive and negative hemispheres, forming a basis for action
A further extension of the point vertically to the circumference divides the
sphere into four parts, represented on a plane surface as a cross within the
circle. Remembering that these extensions of the "point," or center, are
lines of force proceeding from the center and tending to return to it, we
can conceive of the beginning of a revolution of the sphere whereby the ends
of the vertical and horizontal lines extend towards each other, forming at
first the ansated cross, and finally the square within the circle, in
reality, a cube or six-sided figure within the sphere.
The cube, if looked at from either side presents the appearance of four
angles, which, if we can conceive of them as being luminous points
equidistant from the bright center, would be seen as a four-pointed star,
the symbol and sign of the animal kingdom.
If we can imagine Arjuna as seeing within the "divine form" all living lines
of force and the forms produced by them, the four, the five, the six-pointed
star, and the many-sided figures, all in motion and of wonderful brilliancy
of light and of many colors, presenting the activities of all beings of
every grade in the universe, we may obtain some conception of the
descriptive parts of this chapter.
TIME and CYCLES
Krishna speaks: "I am Time matured, come hither for the destruction of all
"Time matured" means the completion of cycles; everything that begins in
time, ends in time; every action has its own cycle or period of return, or
re-action; it is action and actions that produce cycles, and these latter
range from those of momentary duration to those of a "great age," as they
are produced by separate entities, classes of beings, or the collectivity of
actions by all beings of every grade concerned in any particular stream of
IMPERMANENCE OF FORMS - MAYA - CHANGE - PROGRESS
The general reference here is to the impermanence of all forms or
combinations of them.
Change is necessitated by progress, for without change there would be
stagnation; hence the constant disintegration and re-integration of elements
in ever changing relation and form, all brought about by the requirements of
the Perceiver- the Real Man within-, who is the sole survivor through all
Arjuna says: "Thou art the one indivisible Being, and non-being, that which
This statement can only be understood by each one applying it to himself.
We know that we are not our bodies, for they constantly change, while we
remain the same identity through all the changes. We are not our "minds,"
for we change them whenever we find occasion to do so; if we were our minds
we could not change them, and further, it is apparent that "change" cannot
see "change ;" only that which is permanent can see change.
That permanency is the Real, the immortal Man, or, as the "Voice of the
Silence" states it, "the Man that was, that is, and will be, for whom the
hour shall never strike."
Each is the Self, the Perceiver; non-being, yet the cause and sustainer of
being; as the Gita states it in this chapter, "thou art the Knower and that
which is to be known ;" "thou art the final supreme receptacle of this
universe"-the garnerer of all experience when this universe is dissolved. At
the end of the Great Cycle [Kalpa], which includes all minor cycles, all
beings return to the primordial state, plus the experience gained. The next
great stream of evolution will proceed on the basis of the acquired
knowledge of all beings concerned.
from: GITA NOTES Ch. 10, ( Pp. 172 -6)
MANIFESTATION is EVOLUTION
A basis is needed.
If the real area of learning (and confusion) is in the (our) mind, then
we have two great alternatives:
1 the mind thoughts that are rigidly, honest, exact, true and
practises fairness and justice as MORALITY to all (therefore, is impersonal
and universal -- the realm of "brotherhood), and
2 the mind thoughts that are devious and twisted as to logic so as to
favor the personal self. This is selfishness, and it leads to "vice"
because it is incapable of carrying out the logic of such thoughts beyond
the LIFE of this PRESENT BODY.
If THEOSOPHY is correct, and if Karma (impersonal justice)
rules from the very beginning every aspect of the universe, and if
reincarnation is the method that Nature has traced for each immortal "Mind"
to progress, then any practice of MORALITY is something that endures. It
would form the basis for our character and our innate capacities.
The other way fades and disappears after creating a lot of trouble for all
so long as its effects are around. We may assume that reincarnation will
bring such a "mind" back to meet the results.
Which is better? To do good deliberately, or to do harm?
If we cannot escape the effects of "wrong doing" then why create evil
circumstances ? Why hurt or place anyone at a disadvantage ? It will return,
and we will be affected by that.
Lets assume there is
1. a single SOURCE for all things -- (some call it the
ABSOLUTE, the VOID, SPACE, the UNKNOWABLE, DEITY, etc... )
2. DURATION (or endless time) cyclically (under KARMA)
divides itself into periods of action and inaction (rest - nirvana, moksha,
etc....) - called symbolically "The Great Breath."
When there is an "out-breathing" of the life-energy we call it
evolution and the 'visible universe'." Measured TIME begins for a long
3. MOTION as a 3rd component resumes. Evolution and differentiation of
(vehicles of life) is an aspect of this on the physical plane. [Everything
is in constant motion -- causing the concept of "maya" or illusion). But
behind every such vortice there has to be a UNITY that supports and sustains
Here, THEOSOPHY says, a duality consisting of SPIRIT/MATTER (Monad) is
formed -- these are polar opposites yet bonded by consciousness : MIND .
4. The MIND has three great qualities involved in our concept of TIME:
remembers the past. it exists and lives in the present, and 3, it tries to
anticipate and prepare for the future.
This forms a trinity -- yet they are ONE.
Simultaneously throughout SPACE -- the boundless Universe are innumerable
MONADS, and each is as ancient as the first.
These are the centers of consciousness for every BEING, be it an atom, a
galaxy or a man. MONADS are indestructible. [Man as a mind-being is such an
We thus have the SOURCE and a trinity [ = 4 ] on the manifested plane that
serves as the ROOT of all BEING as well as of ALL BEINGS.
5. To "BE" (to me means) "I am conscious of."
6. To "progress" implies a growing comprehension of these basics, and
power by using our WILL to direct our own individual progress.
SEVEN-FOLD UNIVERSE---SEVEN-FOLD MAN
As the prime declaration of theosophy is that all these so-called bodies
and appearances are for the purpose of enabling the ONE--the Atma--to fully
comprehend nature and "bring about the aim of the soul," why not denominate
all that it uses for that purpose vehicles?... Or if greater clearness is
desired, let us say that there is one principle which acts through six
The scheme will then stand thus:
ATMA (spirit), one principle, indivisible
Is vehicles are
Buddhi . . .. Spiritual Soul
Manas . . .. Human Soul
Kama Rupa . .. .Animal Soul
Linga Sarira . .. Astral Body
Prana or Jiva . .. Vitality
Rupa . . .. .The Body "
WQJ Articles I 299
"Enquirer. But who is it that creates each time the Universe?
Theosophist. No one creates it. Science would call the process
evolution...we, Occultists and Theosophists, see in it the only universal
and eternal reality casting a periodical reflection of itself on the
infinite Spatial depths.
This reflection which you regard as the objective material universe, we
consider as a temporary illusion and nothing else.
That alone which is eternal is real...the universe passes out of its
homogeneous subjectivity on to the first pane of manifestation, of which
planes there are seven, we are taught.
With each plane it becomes more dense and material until it reaches this,
our plane...our Solar system (like every other such system in the millions
of others in
Cosmos) and even our Earth, has its own programme of manifestations
differing from the respective programmes of all others."
Key to Theosophy pp. 84-5
"Enquirer. I understand you describe our earth as forming a part of a
chain or earths?
Theosophist. We do. But the other six "earths" or "globes," are
the same plane of objectivity as our earth is; therefore we cannot see
It is only that their material density, weight, or fabric are entirely
different from those of our earth and the other known planets; but they are
(to us) on an entirely different layer of space, so to speak; a layer not
to be perceived or felt by our physical senses...
by "layer" is that plane of infinite space which by its nature cannot fall
under our ordinary waking perceptions, whether mental or physical; but
which exists in nature outside of our normal mentality or consciousness,
outside of our three dimensional space, and outside of our division of time.
Each of the seven fundamental planes (or layers) in space...has its own
objectivity and subjectivity, its own space and time, its own consciousness
and set of senses. [ Like a different set of sense used in our
Our philosophy teaches us that, as there are seven fundamental forces in
nature, and seven planes of being, so there are seven states of
consciousness in which man can live, think, remember and have his being...in
waking and dreaming [we have good proof of the fact]."
Key to Theosophy, pp. 88-90
"...the teaching about the Septenary constitution of the sidereal bodies and
of the macrocosm--from which the septenary division of the microcosm, or
Man--has until now been among the most esoteric. In olden times if used to
be divulged only at the Initiation and along with the most sacred figures of
the cycles...the key to their teaching is furnished by Atma-Vidya...for
outside of metaphysics no occult philosophy, no esotericism is possible."
SECRET DOCTRINE I 168-9
"The universe evolves from the unknown, into which no man or mind, however
high, can inquire, on seven planes or in seven ways or methods in all
worlds, and this seven-fold differentiation causes all the worlds of the
universe and the beings thereon to have a septenary constitution...the
little worlds and the great are copies of the whole, and the minutest insect
as well as the most highly developed being are replicas in little or in
great of the vast inclusive original.
The divisions of the sevenfold universe may be laid down roughly as:
The ABSOLUTE, [or Space--that which ever is and in which all manifestation
must take place...we can do no more than say It Is. None of the great
teachers of the School ascribe qualities to the Absolute although all
qualities exist in It.]
Spirit, Mind, Matter, Will, Akasa or AEther, [ Akasa is used in
place of AEther because English...has no word to properly designate that
tenuous state of matter], and Life.
Our knowledge begins with differentiation, and all manifested objects,
beings, or powers are only differentiations of the Great Unknown. The most
that can be said is that the Absolute periodically differentiates itself,
and periodically withdraws the differentiation into itself.
The first differentiation--speaking metaphorically as to time--is Spirit,
with which appears Matter and Mind.
Akasa is produced from Matter and Spirit.
Will is the force of spirit in action and Life is a resultant of the action
of Akasa moved by spirit, upon Matter. But the Matter here spoken of is not
that which is vulgarly known as such. It is the real Matter which is always
invisible, and has sometimes been called Primordial Matter...Mulaprakriti
[BUDDHI]...we see or perceive only the phenomena but not the essential
nature, body or being of matter.
Mind is the intelligent part of the Cosmos, and in the collection of seven
differentiations above roughly sketched.
This plan was brought over from a prior period of manifestation which added
to its ever increasing perfectness, and no limit can be set to its
evolutionary possibilities in perfectness. Because there was never any
beginning to the periodical manifestations of the Absolute, there will never
be any end, but forever the going forth and withdrawing into the Unknown
will go on." Ocean, pp. 14-15
Table from Secret Doctrine Vol. II, p. 596
Correspondence of the 7 Cosmic and 7 Human "principles."
Human aspects or Cosmic aspects or
TRIPLE ASPECT OF THE DEITY
1. Universal Spirit (Atma) The Unmanifested Logos
2. Spiritual Soul (Buddhi) Universal (latent) Ideation
(see Fnote p.
3. Human Soul, Mind (Manas) Universal (or Cosmic) active
SPIRIT OF THE EARTH
4. Animal Soul (Kama-Rupa) Cosmic Chaotic energy
5. Astral Body (Linga-Sarira) Astral Ideation, reflecting
6. Life Essence (Prana) Life Essence or Energy
7. Body (Sthula Sarira) The Earth.
Table From: Secret Doctrine I p. 157
Seven-fold Man and His Vehicles in States of Consciousness
Go to S D Vol. I TEXT PLEASE: S D I 157
"...Atma-Bodha or "Knowledge of Soul,"[a treatise by Shankaracharya]...
speaks distinctly of seven principles in man (see verse 14).
They are called therein the five sheaths (Panchakosha) in which is enclosed
the divine monad--the Atman and Buddhi, the seventh and sixth principles, or
the individual soul when made distinct...from the supreme soul--Parabrahman.
The first sheath, called Ananda-maya--the sheath of "supreme bliss"--is the
Manas of fifth principle of the Occultists, when united with Buddhi;
the second sheath is Vijnana-maya Kosha, the case or envelope of
"self-delusion," the Manas when self-deluded into the belief of the personal
"I" or Ego, with its vehicle.
The third is Mano-maya sheath, composed of illusionary "mind" associated
with the organs of action and will, is the Kama Rupa and the Linga Sharira
combined, producing an illusive "I" or Mayavi Rupa.
The fourth sheath is called Prana-maya, illusionary "life," our second life
principle or Jiva, wherein resides life, the "breathing" sheath.
The fifth Kosha is called Anna-maya, or the sheath supported by food--our
gross material body.
All these sheaths produce other smaller sheaths, or six attributes or
qualities each, the seventh being always the root-sheath; and the Atman or
spirit passing through all these subtle ethereal bodies like a thread, is
called the "thread-soul" or Sutratman."
- HPB Five Years of Theosophy p. 126
TABLE FROM: Key to Theosophy, pp 91-92
Sanskrit Exoteric Explanatory
a) Rupa or Physical Is the vehicle of all the other
Sthula-Sarira body "principles" during life.
b) Prana Life or Necessary only to a) c) d), and
Vital the functions of the lower
principle which embrace all those
the (physical) brain.
c) Linga- Astral body The Double, the phantom body.
d) Kama rupa The seat of This is the center of the animal
animal des- man, where lies the line of
ires and demarcation which separates
passions. mortal man from the immortal
THE UPPER IMPERISHABLE TRIAD
e) Manas --a Mind. In- The future state and the Karmic
dual prin- telligence: destiny of man depend on whether
ciple in which is the Manas gravitates more downward to
function higher human Kama-rupa, the seat of animal
mind, whose passions, or upwards to Buddhi,
light, or rad- the Spiritual Ego. In the
iation links case, the higher
the MONAD for the individual spiritual aspir-
the lifetime ations of mind (Manas),
to the mortal ating Buddhi, are absorbed
man. and form the Ego, which goes
f) Buddhi The The vehicle of pure universal
g) Atma Spirit One with the Absolute as its
[From: Key to Theosophy pp 91-2]
SD I pp. 242-5 gives the following analysis of seven-fold man:
1. The Upper Triad
1. Atma - pure Spirit Neschamah
2. Buddhi - Spiritual Soul Ruach
3. Manas - Mind, Plastic Mediator Nephesch
2. The Lower Quaternary
4. Kama - Passion & Animal Desire
5. Prana - Life - Mikael, Sun
6. Linga Sarira - Astral Body
Image of Man
7. Sthula Sarira Physical Body
"Nephesh is the breath of (animal) life...
Without Manas, "the reasoning Soul," or mind, Atma-Buddhi are irrational on
this plane and cannot act.
It is Buddhi which is the plastic mediator, not Manas, "the intelligent
medium between the upper Triad and the lower Quaternary."...]
SD I 241-2
"...Soul (or Ego)...is ATMA-BUDDHI-MANAS...(collectively as the upper Triad)
lives on three planes, besides its
fourth, the terrestrial sphere; and it exists eternally on the highest of
MANAS is immortal, because after every new incarnation it adds to
Atma-Buddhi something of itself, and thus assimilating itself to the Monad,
shares its immortality...
BUDDHI becomes conscious by the accretions it gets from Manas after every
new incarnation...Buddhi is the mould of Atma, because Atma is no body, or
shape, or anything, and because Buddhi is its vehicle only figuratively...
ATMA neither progresses, forgets, nor remembers. It does not belong to this
plane; it is but the ray of light eternal which shines upon and through the
darkness of matter--when the latter is willing...
The ASTRAL, through Kama (desire) is ever drawing Manas down into the sphere
of material passions and desires. But if the better man or Manas tries to
escape the fatal attraction and turns its aspirations to Atma--Spirit--then
Buddhi (Ruach) conquers, and carries Manas with it to the realm of eternal
The body follows the whims, good or bad, of Manas; Manas tries to follow
the light of Buddhi, but often fails.
The MONAD BECOMES A PERSONAL EGO when it incarnates; and
something remains of that personality through Manas, when the latter is
perfect enough to assimilate Buddhi." [Extracts from SD I 243-245 ]
"[There is a dual set of "principles:" the spiritual, or those which belong
to the imperishable Ego; and the material, or those principles which make
up the ever-changing bodies or the series of personalities of that Ego.
Let us fix permanent names to those, and say that:--
1. Atma, the "Higher Self," is neither your Spirit nor mine, but
like sunlight shines on all. It is the universally diffused "divine
principle," and is inseparable from its one and absolute Meta-Spirit, as the
sunbeam is inseparable from sunlight.
2. Buddhi (the spiritual soul) is only its vehicle. Neither each
separately, nor the two collectively, are of any more use to the body of
man, than sunlight and its beams are for a mass of granite buried in the
earth, unless the divine Duad is assimilated by, and reflected in, some
consciousness. Neither Atma nor Buddhi are ever reached by Karma, because
the former is the highest aspect of Karma, its universal working agent of
ITSELF in one aspect, and the other is unconscious on this plane. This
consciousness or mind is
3. Manas,(*) the derivation or product in a reflected form of
Ahamkara, "the conception of "I," or Ego-ship, and Taijasi (the radiant).
This is the real Individuality or the divine man. It is this Ego
which--having originally incarnated in the senseless human form animated by,
but unconscious (since it had no consciousness) of, the presence in itself
of the dual monad--made of that human-like form a real man. It is that Ego,
that "Causal Body," which overshadows every personality Karma forces it to
incarnate into; and this Ego which is held responsible for all the sins
committed through, and in, every new body or personality--the evanescent
masks which hide the true Individual through the long series of rebirths.
(*) MAHAT or the "UNIVERSAL MIND" is the source of Manas. The latter
is Manas, i.e., mind, in man. Manas is also called Kshetrajna, "embodied
spirit," because it is...the Manasa-putra, or "Sons of the Universal Mind,"
who created, or rather produced, the thinking man, "manu" by incarnating in
the third Race mankind [Lemurian] in our Round. It is Manasa, therefore,
which is the real incarnating and permanent Spiritual Ego, the
Individuality, and our various and numberless personalities only its
external masks." Key to Theosophy, pp. 135-6
"To avoid henceforth...misapprehensions, I propose to translate literally
from the Occult Eastern terms their equivalents in English, and offer these
for future use.
The HIGHER SELF is Atma, the inseparable ray of the Universal and ONE SELF.
It is the God above, more than within, us. Happy is the man who succeeds in
saturating his inner Ego with it!
The SPIRITUAL divine Ego is the Spiritual soul or Buddhi, in close union
with Manas, the mind-principle, without which it is no Ego at all, but only
the Atmic Vehicle.
The Inner, or Higher "Ego" is Manas, the "Fifth" Principle,...independently
of Buddhi. The Mind-Principle is only the Spiritual Ego when
merged into one with Buddhi,--no materialist being supposed to have in him
such an Ego, however great his intellectual capacities. It is the permanent
Individuality or the "Reincarnating Ego."
The Lower or Personal "Ego" is the physical man in conjunction with his
lower Self, i.e., animal instincts,
passions, desires, etc. It is called the "false personality," and consists
of the lower Manas combined with Kama-rupa, and operating through the
Physical body and its phantom or "double."
The remaining "Principle" "Prana," or "Life, is strictly speaking, the
radiating force or energy of Atma-- as
the Universal Life and the One Self,--Its lower or rather (in its effects)
more physical, because manifesting, aspect.
Prana, Life permeates the whole being of the objective Universe; and is
called a "principle: only because it is an indispensable factor and the deus
ex machina of the living man." Key to Theosophy pp. 175-6
Best wishes as always,
Sent: Wednesday, August 02, 2006
Subject: RE: PROMULGATION OF THEOSOPHY
Hi, I am fairly certain that this question has been raised previously
within this forum...I recall one response, involving phrases such as -
tendancies toward the personal, and/or leading toward dogmatic thinking.
It is one thing to have discussions and meetings with like-minded folks who
wish to learn more, [and stay on] the path of right thinking and right
But, it is another to solidify and crystallize ideas - which unfortunately
happens, even to those with the best intentions - and unbeknownst to the
sincerest, even the sheerest shade of unconscious bias can dim the bright
color of the truth expressed. Then what is promulgated? A theosphical
'church': It's definitely not an easy endeavour...
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