Re: ASCETICISM , INITIATION, SECRECY
Aug 10, 2006 06:42 AM
by W.Dallas TenBroeck
8/10/2006 6:17 AM
Re: ASCETICISM, INITIATION, SECRECY
"Some students, as well as critics, have said that theosophy teaches a
running away from family and from the world, and that neither knowledge nor
salvation can be gained without a RIDICULOUS ASCETICISM which would upset
the natural order. This is wrong.
And when it is believed to be a fact» now asserted be me in confidence of
support from all real Theosophists »that the blessed Masters who ordered the
founding of are Society constantly read and inculcate the Bhagavad-Gita's
philosophy, we perceive that such assertions against the Society's aims are
In order to see more clearly the occasion for his insistence upon
performance of duty, we must remember that at the opening of the battle
Arjuna "threw down his bow and arrows."
This, in India, meant that he then resolved to desert the circumstances in
which karma had placed him and to become an ascetic, or, as has been
frequently proposed by Western students, he wished to get away from a state
of society which offered apparent obstruction to spiritual culture.
But Krishna refers him to his birth in the Kshatriya »or warrior »caste, and
to the natural duty of a Kshatriya, which is war.
My opinion is that the Kshatriya caste is the greatest.
The Brahmins, it is true, have always had more veneration paid them as being
spiritual teachers and thus representing the head of Brahma; but in some of
the Aryan sacrifices there is an occasion when the Kshatriya ranks the
The latter are more the conservators of true doctrine; but when the time
comes for the "gods to descend in order to establish a new harmony on
earth," they always begin with a warrior.
Osiris who educated and solidified the Egyptians was a warrior, and the
mysterious Melchizedek, who blessed Abraham, was prophet, priest, and king,
that is -- warrior. Then, too, the warrior caste could learn and speak the
Vedas as well as engage in war, whereas the Brahmin's only duty was that of
a teacher and not fighter.
The Kshatriya therefore stands in the position of mediator between the
action of the body of Brahma and the calm inaction of Brahma's head.
The natural caste of Arjuna might have been represented as that of merchant,
but wisely it was not, for this is the book of action, and only a warrior
fitly typifies action ; so his natural duty will stand for whatever be that
of any man.
We are not to shirk our karma; by abhorring it we only make new karma.
Our only true course is to "let the motive for action be in the action
itself, never in its reward; do not to be incited to action by the hope of
the result, nor yet indulge a propensity to inaction."
This advice and the direction to see the "One Spirit in all things and all
things in It" (ch. xiii) expresses the gist of the Bhagavad-Gita's teaching
as to the proper attitude to be assumed by those striving after salvation.
In verse 40 ( p. 15 in BHAGAVAD GITA) Krishna alludes to this system as
being one of initiation:
""Let, then, the motive for action be in the action itself, and not in the
event. Do not be incited to actions by the hope of their reward, nor let thy
life be spent in inaction.
Firmly persisting in Yoga, perform thy duty, O Dhananjaya,* and laying aside
all desire for any benefit to thyself from action, make the event equal to
thee, whether it be success or failure. Equal-mindedness is called Yoga.
"Yet the performance of works is by far inferior to mental devotion, O
despiser of wealth.
Seek an asylum, then, in this mental devotion, which is knowledge; for the
miserable and unhappy are those whose impulse to action is found in its
But he who by means of yoga is mentally devoted dismisses alike successful
and unsuccessful results, being beyond them; Yoga is skill in the
performance of actions: therefore do thou aspire to this devotion. For those
who are thus united to knowledge and devoted, who have renounced all reward
for their actions, meet no rebirth in this life, and go to that eternal
blissful abode which is free from all disease and untouched by troubles. "
"In this no initiation is lost, nor are there any evil consequences, and
even a little of this practice saves from great sin or danger; there is no
destruction of nor detriment to one's efforts. "
Although not proclaimed in the newspapers nor advertised here and there
through Secretaries, Delegates, and "Doors," this is the mother and the head
of all systems of initiation. It is the progenitor of the mystic
Rosicrucians, who have adopted the lotus and changed it into a rose, and all
the other hundreds of initiating occult societies are merely faint and
incomplete copies of this real one; but, unlike those, it has never
It is secret, because, founded in nature and having only real Hierophants at
the head, its privacy cannot be invaded without the real key. And that key,
in each degree, is the aspirant himself. Until that aspirant has become in
fact the sign and the key, he cannot enter the degree above him. As a whole
then, and in each degree, it is self-protective.
Thus including all other systems, it is the most difficult of all; but as at
some time, in this life or in a succeeding age, we must perforce enter this
Lodge, the attempt at entry might as well be made at once. -- extracts from
GITA NOTES pp. 47-9
Some useful ideas ?
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