Copyright © 1999 by Theosophical University Press. All rights reserved.
EDITORS’ NOTE: This online version of the Encyclopedic Theosophical Glossary is a work in progress. The manuscript, originally produced in the 1930s and ’40s, is currently being revised and expanded, and will be updated periodically. Comments, corrections, and suggestions are welcome; please send to firstname.lastname@example.org
For ease of searching, diacritical marks are omitted, with the exception of Hebrew and Sanskrit terms, where after the main head a current transliteration with accents is given.
Quick links: Aa-Adh | Adi-Ag | Ah-Al | Am-Ani | Anj-Arc | Ard-Asr | Ass-Atm | Ato-Az | Ba-Be | Bh-Bo | Br-Bz | Ca-Ce | Cha-Chy | Ci-Cz | Da-Der | Des-Dir | Dis-Dz | Ea-El | Em-Ez | F | Ga-Gl | Gn-Gz | Ha-Hh | Hi-Hz | I | J | Ka |Ke-Kz | La-Li | Lo-Lz | Ma-Mam | Man-Mar | Mas-Me | Mi-Mo | Mp-Mz | Na-Ne | Nf-Nz | O | Pa-Peq | Per-Pi | Pl-Pral | Pram-Prj | Pro-Pz | Q-Rec | Red-Roos | Root-Rz | Sa-Sal | Sam-Saq | Sar-Sec | Sed-Sez | Sh-Sir | Sis-Som | Son-Sq | Sr-Sum | Sun-Sz | Ta-Tel | Tem-Thn | Tho-Tre | Tri-Tz | U | Va-Vih | Vij-Vz | W-X | Y | Z
Michael (Hebrew) Mīkhā’ēl Who is as God; one of the seven archangels, in the Old Testament one of the chiefs of the heavenly host, regarded as the guardian angel or celestial patron of Israel. According to one legend, Michael was chief of the four or seven angels who surrounded the heavenly throne. The Roman Catholic Church regards Michael in much the same light, his festival, Michaelmas, being held on September 29. With the Gnostics, the first of the Aeons, called the savior. In the New Testament Michael leads the angelic host against the Apocalyptic Dragon, repeating the familiar tale of many ancient mythologies. Again, he is the chief opponent of Samael, the principal antagonist of the heavenly host. Originally, however, both Michael and Samael were as one, both proceeding from ruah (soul), neshamah (spirit), and nephesh (vitality) — as taught in the Qabbalah (in the Chaldean Book of Numbers). “Samael is the concealed (occult) Wisdom, and Michael the higher terrestrial Wisdom, both emanating from the same source but diverging after their issue from the mundane soul, which on Earth is Mahat (intellectual understanding), or Manas (the seat of Intellect). They diverge, because one (Michael) is influenced by Neschamah, while the other (Isamael) remains uninfluenced. This tenet was perverted by the dogmatic spirit of the Church; which . . . made of Samael-Satan (the most wise and spiritual spirit of all) — the adversary of its anthropomorphic God and sensual physical man, the devil!” (SD 2:378).
In Ezekiel’s vision of the Cherubim, or the four sacred animals, the angel with the face of the lion corresponds to Michael, as in the Ophite scheme.
Mico (Egyptian) Mico. Egg supported by tau cross.
Microbes. See BACTERIA
Microcosm [from Greek mikro little + kosmos world] A little world; applied to man or any other being considered as a miniature copy of the universe or macrocosm. The destiny and origin of man and the universe are said to be coeval, which is the key to understanding and the basis of practical occultism. Man, as a microcosm, is a storehouse of universal types, not merely as a whole, all parts of his constitution included, but any part of his constitution such as his physical body is itself a microcosm. The decad is applicable in each case, as also septenary and duodenary classification.
Microprosopus (Latin) [from Greek mikros small + prosopon face] Qabbalistic rendition of the Chaldean phrase Ze‘eyr ’Anpin (Short Face), which designates the nine smaller Sephiroth, in contradistinction from the Macroprosopus (Long Face). Microprosopus or the nine Sephiroth are the manifested universe or Third Logos unfolded in manifestation; whereas Macroprosopus (the Crown or Kether), the first and highest of the Sephiroth, is the First and Second Logoi considered as a unit, the purely spiritual universe and its roots. Hence the Microprosopus is the Logos manifested, and of such logoi there are many in boundless space. Naturally each such universe has its own Macroprosopus, Crown, or Kether, all these universes being united by their divine-spiritual roots in the Boundless.
Midgard, Midgardr (Icelandic) [from mid middle + gardr court] In Norse mythology, the central world where humanity lives. It is surrounded by the waters of space where is coiled Iormungandr, the Midgard serpent, one of Loki’s three dread offspring. It represents the equator, the plane of the ecliptic, or even the Milky Way, depending on the context. Midgards-veorr (the holy one of Midgard) is Thor, defender of the human world against the giants.
Midgard-serpent. See IORMUNGANDR
Midrash (Hebrew) Midrāsh [from dārash to search out, inquire] Any exegetical exposition, interpretation, or commentary treating of the Jewish scriptures; often used in the plural, Midrashim.
Also used for a certain body of Jewish expository literature, which is divided into two classes: Halachah, dealing with legal and ritual matters, flourishing particularly in the schools, where it often developed into casuistry; and Haggadah, writings on any other theme, generally dealing with traditions, stories, legends, allegories, and history.
Migmar (Tibetan) mig dmar [from mig eye + dmar red] The “red eye,” the planet Mars, whose symbol is an eye; corresponding to the Sanskrit mangala. Also Tuesday. The solar house of Mars is Aries, whose symbol is said to be written on the face in the eyebrows and nose. Mystical astrology states that there is a general correspondence among Mars, fire, and the human eye.
Mikael. See MICHAEL
Miles (Latin) Soldier; name given to the candidate who passed the third stage of initiation into the Mithraic Brotherhood.
Milky Way. See VIA STRAMINIS
Mimameid (Icelandic) [from Mimir a giant + meid tree] The Norse Tree of Knowledge, belonging to the “wise giant” Mimir, owner of the well of wisdom from which Odin, Allfather of gods and men, daily drinks. Mimir represents basic matter from which all worlds are formed, corresponding to Mulaprakriti.
Mimameid is said to spread its branches over the land where Menglad (the goddess Freya) dwells. None may know of what root it is sprung but it “falls not for fire or iron.” In its topmost branches perches a golden bird named Wideopener, and in the Underworld a magic brew is secreted in an iron caldron secured with nine strong locks and guarded by the dread hag Sinmara.
According to the tale of Svipdag, a postulant undertaking initiatory trials, he must wrest from Sinmara the magic potion which alone can give him access to the Wideopener but, in order to get the potion he must bring her a feather from the golden bird! This impossible task illustrates how thorough a familiarity with all aspects of the Tree of Knowledge is demanded of one seeking union with his higher self, represented by Menglad, the principle of spiritual intelligence.
Mimansa (Sanskrit) Mīmāṃsā [from the verbal root man to think] Profound thought, profound consideration; one of the six Darsanas or Hindu schools of philosophy. There are two Mimansas, the older or Purva-mimansa, founded by Jaimini, and the younger or Uttara-mimansa founded by Vyasa. The older is commonly known as the Mimansa, and the younger as the Vedanta.
While the Uttara-mimansa is usually considered by European Orientalists to be the later in time, it contains the philosophic key to the entire system and in other senses may be called the theosophy of the Vedas. The word vedanta itself means “end of the Veda,” in the sense of being its philosophical explication or completion.
Mimir, Mimer (Icelandic, Scandinavian) In Norse mythology, the foremost of giants representing space on nine levels of existence, of which our physical space is but one — the number nine may stand for an infinite continuum rather than a precise figure.
Mimir is owner of the well of wisdom (Mimisbrunnr), of which Odin, the living deity, drinks each day (life). For this privilege he had to forfeit one eye, which is kept at the bottom of the well. Symbolically Odin (divine consciousness) enters spheres of life in space and partakes of the waters of wisdom through experience. In doing so he “raises the runes (of wisdom) with song,” i.e., with motion, life, activity. At the same time the matter-giant Mimir partakes of Allfather’s forfeit (divine vision) as he quaffs the waters.
It is possible that the lost eye of Odin has reference to humanity’s third eye which, according to theosophic tradition, retreated into the skull a long time ago, though a vestigial remnant of it remains imbedded in the brain as the pineal gland. There it awaits future use as the organ of the intuition or sixth sense, which in the far future is due to become active again.
During the war in heaven between the Aesir and the Vanir (lower and higher gods), Mimir was slain by Njord (time) and his body cast into a swamp. Of his severed head Odin made the “moon shield” also called water divider. Odin consults Mimir’s head, gaining wisdom from it daily. In the realm of Night, Mimir judges the dead.
Mimir’s well is one of the three springs which water the Tree of Life, Yggdrasil, the other two being those of Hvergelmir and Urd. His tree, Mimameid, is the Tree of Knowledge, which spreads its branches over the heavenly abode of Menglad (Freya), the higher mind.
Mina (Sanskrit) Mīna Fish; the twelfth zodiacal sign, Pisces, which corresponds to the number 5, and thus also conveys the idea of the five elements — the usually accepted four plus the fifth or aether.
Mind The ancient wisdom taught that mind is one of the functions or innate attributes of the fundamental selfhood or consciousness of the monadic entity. There is the fundamental self, known from time immemorial as the atman, which in its self-unfolding or emanational activities produces the various attributes of itself, among which three almost indistinguishable attributes are what we call mind, intellect, and consciousness. When manifestation is ended, these various qualities are rolled back into themselves and gathered up into the fundamental monadic self, upon which the monad begins its periodic enjoyment — to use the Eastern term — of its own selfhood, unadulterate, noumenal, and unitary. Thus, in its widest sense, mind is an attribute of the spirit side of being, as contrasted with the matter side, which latter nevertheless is intrinsically unevolved or latent mind; hence we speak of cosmic mind, of which there are innumerable limited aspects in the manifested worlds.
A somewhat different definition is, “Mind is a name given to the sum of the states of Consciousness grouped under Thought, Will, and Feeling. During deep sleep, ideation ceases on the physical plane, and memory is in abeyance; thus for the time being ‘Mind is not,’ because the organ, through which the ego manifests ideation and memory on the material plane, has temporarily ceased to function. A noumenon can become a phenomenon on any plane of existence only by manifesting on that plane through an appropriate basis or vehicle; and during the long night of rest called Pralaya, when all existences are dissolved, the ‘Universal Mind’ remains as a permanent possibility of mental action, or as that abstract absolute thought, of which mind is the concrete manifestation” (SD 1:38). Here mind is consciousness in action, the phenomenon corresponding to a noumenon which, in the absence of vehicles for its expression, can only be described as mind in latency, or a possibility of mental action. The dhyani-chohans are the expressers of latent cosmic mind, who bring it into various degrees of manifestation. They are vehicles for the expression of divine thought and will, intelligent forces which give to nature its laws.
Mind-born Born of imagination and will — through kriyasakti, the power of thought and mind — not begotten or produced by any physical mode of procreation. It sometimes refers to sons of will and yoga, sons of wisdom, spiritual dhyanis, sons of the prajapatis, mind-born sons of Brahma, etc. They were the ancestors of the self-conscious human races first appearing numerously during the fourth round, and otherwise known as solar lhas, solar spirits, angishvattas, manasaputras, dhyani-chohans. They had been self-conscious men in a former embodiment of the earth-chain, and it was their lot to awaken self-conscious mind in the mankind of this round. They entered the early third root-race and awakened the intellectual fire in them. The manasas rejected some earlier subraces as unfit vehicles for themselves, hence as refusing to “create,” i.e., emanate mind from themselves to inform these unready or unevolved human vehicles. The mind-born sons of the early third root-race were the first themselves to arouse the fire of mind in the unself-conscious human vehicles, and were the highest and therefore the least affected by such lower contact. Retaining their self-consciousness in full and therefore not falling into oblivion, these were the first founders as fully self-conscious humans of the earliest groups of god-inspired men, the forerunners of what later became the ancient Mysteries. A branch of these entities has continued from immemorial time as the Great Lodge of the Masters of Wisdom and Compassion.
In Hebrew allegory the connection among the ideas associated with Jehovah is this same archaic verity which in Hebrew Qabbalistic thought is exemplified as ’Adam Qadmon; and the word transliterated as Jehovah in a collective sense refers to the Benei ’Elohim (sons of the gods).
The universe itself is, from the viewpoint of emanational evolution, the mind-born or -produced offspring or son of universal Mother Nature or the Second or Manifest-Unmanifest Logos, whose characteristics have been looked upon by mystics as feminine — generative or productive. Virtually all peoples of antiquity trace their origin to a spiritual root, which is this Second Logos or Mother Nature manifesting through its son or the Third Logos; and various other mythoi trace their ancestry likewise to divine beings who were considered during the course of evolution at one time to have been asexual like Christian angels, and at another stage to have been bipolar in nature, or what in its physical manifestation were called hermaphrodites or androgynes.
Mind-Cure. See FAITH HEALING
Mindless In theosophy most commonly applied to entities which are not yet endowed with human self-conscious mind; applied to the first, second, and first half of the third root-races, but especially to the humanity of the early part of the third root-race, in which mindless vehicles some of the manasaputras incarnated. The term also applies to those of the third root-race who begat by miscegenation with animals the earlier simians, from which later, and from another more or less mindless miscegenation, sprang the anthropoids. It is also applied to animals in general as contrasted with human beings, because animals have not yet developed self-conscious possession of mind, but only the germs of it.
Minerva (Latin) Roman goddess of intelligence, inventiveness, arts practiced by women, and of school children, physicians, poets, etc. Her oldest sanctuaries were in Rome, and her chief festival was the Quinquatrus, celebrated on March 19. Later identified with the Greek Pallas Athena. See also ATHENA
Minos (Greek) King and legislator of Crete, son of Zeus and Europa, afterwards one of the judges of the shades in Hades or the Underworld. Also, a grandson of this Minos, also king of Crete figuring in the story of the Labyrinth and the Minotaur.
Miocene. See GEOLOGICAL ERAS
Miolner. See MJOLNIR
Miracles [from Latin] Originally signifying some phenomenon in nature or human life which was considered highly noteworthy, extraordinarily remarkable, or a cause of wonderment; from this developed in Christian thought a conception regarding happenings originating in God Almighty, which were supposed to be contrary to or transcending the laws of nature. There are marvels enough in nature, and marvels that may be wrought in and upon nature by nature’s laws used by the developed wisdom and will power of the initiate or adept, to correspond to most, if not all, of the most extraordinary so-called miracles of Christian theology; but all such wondrous phenomena are wrought by means of a knowledge of the laws of nature, and it is nature and its laws which are behind them all, and actually prove them as realities. To suggest that anything can be contrary to nature is an absurdity. Thus miracles actually are unusual phenomena, produced by the use of natural means.
Mirku (Chaldean) Noble crown; the savior from death of the gods, regarded as the creator of the Dark Race (Zalmat-qaqadi). The class of intelligent beings in the universe who through evolution bring about progressive unfolding growth from within outwards of all beings and entities, who thus are at one stage of their evolution the Dark Race, because sunken in matter, but are saved by the germs of intelligence expanding into cosmic realization within themselves. Hence the describing of intellect or intelligence as noble crown.
Mirror The astral light is often referred to as a mirror, as all manifestations are reflected in it. The Logos is also referred to as a mirror, reflecting divine mind, “and the Universe is the mirror of the Logos, though the latter is the esse of that Universe. As the Logos reflects all in the Universe of Pleroma, so man reflects in himself all that he sees and finds in his Universe, the Earth” (SD 2:25).
The monads are also living mirrors of the universe, every monad reflecting every other one (SD 1:623), as Leibniz taught. “The Luminous Mirror, Aspaqularia nera, a Kabbalistic term, means the power of foresight and farsight, prophecy such as Moses had. Ordinary mortals have only the Aspaqularia della nera or Non Luminous Mirror, they see only in a glass darkly: a parallel symbolism is that of the conception of the Tree of Life, and that only of the Tree of Knowledge” (TG 215).
Mishnah or Mishneh (Hebrew) Mishnāh, Mishneh [from shānāh to do something a second time, repeat] That which has been done a second time, a repetition; hence that which is handed on by repetition, oral tradition.
Specifically, a part of the Talmud, consisting of an arrangement of the extant Oral Law, divided into six Orders (sedarim) dealing with seeds, festivals, women, damages, holy things, and purifications.
Missing Link On the theory that man has been produced by evolution from the anthropoid apes, a type which shall be intermediate between the anthropoid and man. A misleading term, implying that a chain of graduated types between animals and men has been completely established except for the lack of a single link or type which, when found, will make the chain complete. The existence of such a nearly complete chain has always been largely suppositious. The Darwinian theory requires that man evolved by successive stages of continually greater refinement, from an unknown beast ancestor, then from a primitive savage and almost bestial type, up to the man of today. The numerous degrees of human refinement found living today or evidenced by their remains, do not represent a progressive, unbroken serial time scale of evolution, but merely a complicated assortment of types which in all times known to science appear to have existed contemporaneously with each other. Moreover the so-called primitive types are now recessive, and have been so for ages, being themselves to us the remote descendants of far earlier races, once civilized, but now represented merely by these degenerate remnants.
The existing anthropoid apes, however, are truly the closest of the animals or semi-animals to the human stock, actually having originated from a miscegenation by very early, quasi-mindless humans (actually undeveloped savages of those far distant times) with what then were fairly evolved simian types. Thus the present-day anthropoids are a somewhat, if slightly, advanced stock over their earlier forefathers who were the original anthropoids produced by the “sin” of unevolved and savage Atlantean tribes with simians. Precisely because the anthropoids have some human ancestry they will attract to incarnation in the future human egos as yet in a low state of unfolded spiritual and intellectual powers and capacities, and who will thus, as the cycles roll on, finally evolve into a low type of thinking and sensitive human being.
In theosophy evolution is unfolding or emanational development from within outwards of the incarnating monads; and the bodies in which these monads incarnate are the least important part of the matter. The bodies slowly follow, in improving sensitivity and relatively continuous perfection of the nervous system, including the brain and spinal cord, the unfolding impulses from within, which thus guide these bodies to greater degrees of perfection. As the egos or monads unfold from themselves the latent powers of spirit and mind, as well as of the psychological nature, the bodies feel the inner and compelling urges and impulses, and very slowly through the ages conform to become vehicles fitted to express the inner fires.
Mistletoe, Mistilteinn (Icelandic) [from mistil + teinn twig] A parasitic plant held in high esteem among the Druids and Anglo-Saxon peoples as well as the Norse. The Druids are said to have used it as a medicinal herb. In Norse mythology it is instrumental in bringing about the death of Balder (the sun god) at the instigation of Loki, through the agency of Hoder, the blind god of darkness and ignorance.
The “death” of the sun god at the winter solstice marks the nadir of the cycle of the year before the rejuvenation of spring. One meaning of the story in the Edda is the inevitable withdrawal of the guiding gods from association with the early races of mankind, to enable humanity to become independent and to seek and find its own way back to its divine source.
Mitakshara (Sanskrit) Mitākṣarā Various concise commentaries, especially the celebrated commentary by Vijnanesvara on Yajnavalkya’s Dharmasastra.
Mithras (Greek) Mithra, Mitra (Avestan) [from Avestan Mithra from mith, myth light + ra subjective form] Ancient Persian deity; Yusti translates Mithra as the medium between the two lights: the invisible and the visible. Therefore, Mithra means the latent potential ability of understanding and the developing force in nature. It is the hidden beingness, the mysterious force of growth and the invisible light; philosophically, the latent power of cognition; astrologically, the source of the light of the heavens; and mystically, the creative force of love. Ahura-Mazda says: “I have created Mithra as worthy of sacrifice, as worthy of glorification, as I, Ahura-Mazda, am myself.” In late Persian times he became the god of the sun and of truth and faith. He punishes the Mithra-druj (he who lies to Mithra). He is represented as a judge in hell, in company with Rashnu (the true one, the god of truth) — who is an aspect of Mithra in his moral character. The Sanskrit Mitra in the Vedas is the god of light and friendship.
As known to the Greeks and Romans, Mithras was the god of the sun, of purity, moral goodness, and knowledge, whose worship spread over the Roman world, especially during the 2nd and 3rd centuries.
Mithraism The worship of Mithras, a remarkable and highly mystical religion which existed long before Zoroaster as the Society of the Magi (the Great Brotherhood of Man) giving its secret teachings to qualified candidates, the future initiates. Although supposedly a worship of the sun, originating in Persia, Mithraism was “really a religious philosophy based upon the Divine, Inner, and Invisible Sun, a vortex so to say of the Divine Spiritual Fire of the Universe, of the Heart of Things” (ET 609 3rd & rev ed). Mithraism spread throughout the Greco-Roman world, especially during the 2nd and 3rd centuries and for a time threatened to supersede Christianity. A number of the liturgical rites and ceremonies of Christianity are probably of Mithraic origin. For example, rites associated with Deo Soli Invicto Mithrae (to the Unconquered God-sun, Mithras), were held at the time of the winter solstice, especially the Night of Light — now Christmas — known as the birthday of Mithras, represented as having been born in a cave or grotto, hence often called the rock-born god. Exceedingly popular in the Roman armies as well as with the rulers of the Roman Empire, Mithraism was regularly established by Trajan about 100 AD in the Empire, and the Emperor Commodus was himself initiated into its mysteries. Sacred caves or grottoes were the principal places of worship, where the Mysteries for which Mithraism was famed were enacted.
The candidate for initiation into the Mithraic Mysteries had to undergo twelve “tortures” or labors, but the enumeration of the twelve or seven degrees is varied. One consisting of twelve grades is as follows: the candidate first underwent a long probation, with scourging, fasting, and ordeal of water, whereupon he became a soldier of Mithras. Before the soul of the initiant could leave the terrestrial region, it had to pass through the zodiacal grades of the Bull and the Lion, each involving further probation. Then it ascended through the region of the aether by means of the grades of the Vulture, the Ostrich, and the Crow. The soul then strove to pass into the realm of pure fire, through the stages of the Gryphon, the Perses, and the Sun. Finally the soul attained complete union with the divine nature through the grades of Father Eagle, Father Falcon, and Father of Fathers.
One of the principal tenets of Mithraism was that a struggle between good and evil is continually going on in the world, and that this dualistic interworking and intermingling of cosmic and terrestrial forces is also occurring within every man and woman; each one has the power to aid in this conflict so that the good shall ultimately triumph. This is achieved by means of self-sacrifice and probation, and Mithras is ever ready to make the mystic sacrifice whereby the good may triumph. “The Persian Mithra, he who drove out of heaven Ahriman, is a kind of Messiah who is expected to return as the judge of men, and is a sin-bearing god who atones for the iniquities of mankind. As such, however, he is directly connected with the highest Occultism, the tenets of which were expounded during the Mithraic Mysteries which thus bore his name” (TG 216). Origen refers to the Mithraic teaching of the seven heavens, each of which was ascended by means of a ladder — representing the different stages or planes of the heavens — over which ruled the highest or most spiritual realm of nature. Celsus mentions their teaching concerning the seven sacred planets.
Especially associated with Mithraism is a representation of Mithra as a handsome youth in Oriental garments, kneeling on a bull which is thrown to the ground, the youth being about to cut the throat of the bull with his dagger. The bull is at the same time attacked by a dog, a serpent, and a scorpion, followed by two birds. Here the bull is an emblem of strength and of creative or generative power; Mithra is the spiritual man or sun killing or subduing his animal passions. This ritualistic representation later became so anthropomorphic that it aroused Zoroaster to bring about certain reforms and replace Mithra with Ahura-Mazda, an abstract concept.
Mithuna (Sanskrit) Mithuna A couple; the third zodiacal sign, Gemini or the Twins; intended to represent the first androgyne, or the androgynous portion of third root-race humanity.
Mitra (Sanskrit) Mitra Friend; a Vedic deity of light and friendship associated with Varuna; also a name of the sun or a form of the sun; likewise an aditya.
Mizraim (Hebrew) Mitsrayim The Biblical name for Egypt, the word being in the dual signifying the two Egypts.
Mjolnir (Icelandic) [from mjoll meal, flour from mala, mola to grind, crush, mill] Also Miolnir. The hammer of Thor, the Thunderer in Norse mythology, a gift to the god from the dwarfs Brock (mineral kingdom) and Sindri (vegetation), sons of Ivaldi, the lunar life cycle. It is at once the instrument of creation and destruction, being the emblem of marriage on one hand and the weapon whereby the giants (cycles of material life) are destroyed. It is the magic mill which creates all things — gold, salt, happiness, peace, etc. — as well as grinding up all substance and recycling it for future use in worlds to come. Blavatsky likens the hammer of Thor to the fire weapon agneyastra of the Hindu Puranas and Mahabharata (TG 215).
Mjotudr (Icelandic) [from mjot measure + udr out of, exhausting] In Norse mythology, the dying phase of a Tree of Life, the second half of its existence when the energies are retreating from the material back toward the spiritual realm. Applies to any world tree, large or small. See also MJOTVIDR
Mjotvidr (Icelandic) [from mjot measure + vidr growing, expanding] In Norse myths, the first half of a life cycle of any Tree of Life, during which the energies are flowing into the material worlds and organizing forms for its component consciousnesses. See also MJOTUDR
Mlecchas. See MLECHCHHAS
Mlechchhas (Sanskrit) Mleccha-s [from the verbal root mlech to speak indistinctly; cf Greek barbaroi] Outcastes; Hindu name for all foreigners or non-Aryans.
Mnevis (Greek) Ur-mer (Egyptian) Ur-mer. The sacred bull of Heliopolis, described as the life of Ra, and connected with the sun. A bull with the disk of the sun and uraeus placed between his horns. Like Apis at Memphis, Mnevis was consecrated to Osiris — although the former was associated with the moon. The solar Mnevis, however, was often called the sun of Ptah whose animal symbol was a black bull. Thus Mnevis represents the “black,” i.e., the abstract, occult, or hid cosmic power guided by cosmic wisdom or Ptah, and therefore comprehending in its thought the inclusive secret and hid cosmic powers, behind and working through the visible universe; while Apis represents the detailed manifested ray working in and through the world of matter of which the moon stands as a type, although more or less filled with Osirian or spiritual powers.
Mobed (Persian) Magupat (Pahlavi) [from mogh, magus great] Also Maubed. The chief priest; the priest of Mazdeism and of the present-day Parsis. Mobeds are the middle class of priests, the highest class being the Dasturs. In ancient days the Maubedan Maubed was the chief high priest of Mazdeism, and today the chief high priest of the Parsis is also termed the High Mobed.
The priestly caste was hereditary; and a legend in the Bundahis tells of the Mobeds originating from King Minochihr — similarly the Brahmins attribute their origin to Brahma.
Mode (Icelandic) [from mod; cf English mood, German Muth wrath] Thor, Norse god of thunder and lightning, in his capacity as electromagnetism in the infinite reaches of space, has two sons: Mode and Magne. Both mean power, though Mode has the connotation of anger, suggesting a repelling force, whereas Magne connotes power that is granted one. These two sons of Thor may represent attraction and repulsion, or gravitation and radiation on the cosmic level.
Moha (Sanskrit) Moha Bewilderment, perplexity, folly, delusion, error. In philosophy, delusion of mind, preventing the discernment of truth and leading to the belief in the reality of unreal worldly objects; closely similar to maya, but with an emphasis placed on the activity of the deceiving mind.
With Buddhists, ignorance, one of the three roots of vice. In the Vishnu-Purana, infatuation personified as the offspring of Brahma.
Moira (Greek) Plural morai or morae. One’s allotted share; destiny. As a proper name, there was originally only one Moira, but later there were three: Lachesis, Clotho, and Atropos. Lachesis is from a root lach, as in lagchano “to obtain that which has already been determined or fixed”; she is depicted as a grave maiden holding a staff pointing to a horoscope, signifying that which man has built in the past is now unfolding. She was occultly connected with the earth. Clotho or Klotho is from a verb meaning “to spin,” and is represented as a woman holding a spindle, spinning thread which is man’s destiny, that which he is at present weaving for the future, and is connected with the future in that what we weave now determines what our future shall be. Thus it is linked with the psychological part of human nature, and connected occultly with the moon. Atropos is from a verb meaning “impossible to set aside or evade,” and therefore is translated as “inevitable, ineluctable.” It was often represented as a woman pointing to a sundial signifying that as the sun brings its light to the earth, so the future shall bring its destiny to man, as the flying hours unfold what comes to us out of the womb of time. Thus we have Lachesis representing the ineluctable destiny coming to us in our present life on earth from our past; Clotho, the present spinning of our future destiny because of the actions and reactions, mental and emotional, by which we are now weaving the web of fate which someday will become the present; and Atropos, the ineluctable and inescapable future represented as held in store, every thread of which has been woven by ourselves in past and present. Their respective functions are sometimes interchanged. Equivalent to the Latin Parcae and Fata, and the Scandinavian Norns.
It is only in this world that the action of fate seems extraneous to human will, for in reality we are the weaver of our own fates. The Morai are karmic agents or forces rather than karma, which is fundamentally the law governing universal equilibrium. In its essence the constant working of cosmic harmony, karma must of necessity manifest itself in multimyriad forms and manners — in and through multimyriad agents or forces. Karma being essentially the law of cosmic unity and concord, it is only the individuals which disturb this universal equilibrium who can feel the reaction therefrom, whether in one life or in a later one; but the karmic effects are by no means always identic with the originating causative action of the individual, because of the karmic agents of many kinds through which karma works. Thus, the gods, all human beings, the earth itself, and all its component forces and substances are karmic agents constantly interacting upon each other; so that while abstractly the action of karma is infallible and infinitely unerring and cannot ever be escaped or set aside, its reactions upon the individual who broke its laws may take place in diverse ways and usually through agents or instruments, since karma is no individual or cosmic god.
In the Pistis Sophia, Moira is enumerated as one of the principles of man, and called by Blavatsky the karmic ego (SD 2:605).
Moksha (Sanskrit) Mokṣa [from mokṣ to release, set free probably from the verbal root much] Freedom; freedom from sentient life for the reminder of a manvantara. Equivalent to nirvana, the absolute, mukti [from the verbal root much], the Palace of Love of the Zohar, the Gnostic Pleroma of Eternal Light, the Chinese nippang, and the Burmese neibban. “When a spirit, a monad, or a spiritual radical, has so grown in manifestation that it has first become a man, and is set free interiorly, inwardly, and from a man has become a planetary spirit or dhyan-chohan or lord of meditation, and has gone still higher to become interiorly a brahman, and from a brahman the Parabrahman for its hierarchy, then it is absolutely perfected, free, released: perfected for that great period of time which to us seems almost an eternity, so long is it, virtually incomputable by the human intellect. This is the Absolute: limited in comparison with things still more immense, still more sublime; but so far as we can think of it, ‘released’ or ‘freed’ from the chains or bonds of material existence” (Fund 183).
One thus released or freed is called a jivanmukta (freed monad), which is never again during that manvantara subject to the qualities of either matter or karma. But if these beings choose, for the sake of doing good in the world, they may incarnate on earth as nirmanakayas. See also ABSOLUTE
Moloch (Hebrew) Molekh Royal, king — another form of the more usual melekh; an idol of the Moabites and the Ammonites, also called Milcom, to which Jews after the time of Solomon are said to have sacrificed infants. Some scholars suggest that the Hebrews looked upon Moloch as the title of Yahweh or Yihweh (Jehovah). Even when occurring in the Bible the rendering is “the Molech,” and the idea is that of dedication — “to make one’s son or daughter pass through fire to (the) Molech” (2 King 23:10); and Jeremiah seems to indicate that immolation was practiced. Nothing of such a practice has been discovered in the ancient Assyrian or Babylonian empires, but ancient Greek writers have suggested that the Phoenicians had such a custom. Diodorus (19:14) mentions a Carthaginian idol made of brass into which children were placed, and compares it to the child-eating Kronos. Blavatsky suggests that the Moloch of the Ammonites was the King of the Hosts of Heaven, the sun (SD 1:397); and there was undoubtedly some such connection, yet antiquity has identified Kronos with the planet Saturn, which was held in reverence by all the ancient Shemitic peoples, the Jews included.
Moment of Choice The turning point in evolution, when the temporary balance between spirit and matter, or between upward and downward movements, has been reached. The evolving entity can then no longer remain neutral and undecided, but must choose definitely whether to continue upward or to enter upon a downward path. When the movement towards pralaya prevails, all the classes of evolving beings gravitate to their appropriate sphere: spirit to spirit, matter to matter, manas to mahat. But this dividing of the ways occurs for self-conscious entities at every step of the path, so that in this sense the moment of choice is continuous. Although this moment of choice is continuous for the individual, yet a point occurs in human evolution when the decision must definitely be made to follow the upward path or to follow the matter side of evolution. There is also the choice that must be made when the individual has reached the peak of human evolution on this globe, when the decision is finally to be made whether he will follow the path of the Buddhas of Compassion, or pursue the way of self and become a Pratyeka Buddha.
The human kingdom’s moment of choice is that point in the evolutionary cycle reached on this globe in the fifth round when the monads not ready to continue their upward evolutionary journey must perforce wait for a future manvantara. The evolutionary moment of choice for the animal kingdom was that point in the cycle when the door to the human kingdom was closed, after which no monads can enter the human life-wave until the next manvantara. This occurred at the midpoint of the fourth round on globe D of the earth-chain, during the fourth root-race.
Monad, Monas [from Greek monas a unit, individual, atom] A unit, a one; something nondivisible and which is therefore conceived of as real, in contradistinction to compound things which (as compounds) are not real.
In the Pythagorean system the Duad emanates from the higher and solitary Monas, which is thus the First Cause or First Logos, the Duad being the Second Cause or Logos; and from the second emanates the third stage of individuality, the Triad, Third Cause or Logos. In the human constitution the Monas signifies atman, the Duad buddhi, and the Triad signifies manas.
The term monad was adopted from Greek philosophy by Bruno, Leibniz, and others. According to Leibniz there can be but one ultimate cosmic reality or monad, the universe; but he recognizes an innumerable multiplicity of monads which pervade the universe, copies or reflections of the universal monad regarded as real except in their relation to the universal monad. He divides his derivative monads into three classes: rational souls; sentient but irrational monads; and material monads, or organic and inorganic bodies. As regards the material monads, while recognizing that corporeal matter is compound, and the attributes by which we perceive it unreal, unlike Berkeley, he does not deny its existence but regards it essentially as monadic. Thus his universe is an aggregate of individuals. The relations of these individuals to each other and to the universal is a supreme harmony, implying both individuality and coordination, thus reconciling the antinomy of bonds of law and freedom. The interrelations of various groups of monads is as a series of hierarchies. Theosophical usage is largely the same as that of Leibniz, as the focus or heart in any individual being, of all its divine, spiritual, and intellectual powers and attributes — the immortal part of its being. In The Secret Doctrine we find a triadic union of gods-monads-atoms, related to each other as spirit-soul-body (or more accurately spirit, spirit-soul, and spirit-soul-body). Monads and atoms are related to each other as the energic and the material side of manifestation, the atoms being the reflections, veils, or projections of and from the monads themselves.
Monads are the ultimate elements of the universe, spiritual-substantial entities, self-motivated, self-impelled, self-conscious, in infinitely varying degrees. They engender other monads, which in turn engender others, and thus springs up the host of living entities forming the immense variety and unity of the manifested world. As any monad descends into matter, it secretes from itself various veils or vehicles adapted for its self-expression on the various cosmic planes. Thus in man there is the divine monad, the spiritual monad, the higher human or chain monad, the lower human or globe monad, the animal monad, and the astral-physical monad. The following diagram shows the relations between the cosmic principles; the monads, egos and souls in the human being; and the human principles
The monad, as its name implies, is ever-enduring as an individual, although at the end of each manvantara it rises into a still higher or divine stage of perfect union with the boundless divine, only to re-issue forth again in due course as the monad it was before, thus beginning a new, immensely long time period of active individualized life as a spiritual consciousness-center. Thus it is that even the monads evolve, each on its own plane, for the hierarchies of the monads are innumerable and exist in all-various degrees at stages of evolutionary progression on the endless ladder of cosmic life.
Monadic Envelope. See AURIC EGG
Monadic Ray The monad, that divine-spiritual-intellectual seed or originant of each evolving being, does not itself descend into the planes of matter, but shoots forth from itself a multitude of rays. Each such ray forms the essential nature of the complex evolving being to which it pertains, and hence the monad is the primal or ultimate source of all that being’s life and characteristic attributes, the immortal part of the being, whether that being be human, animal, vegetable, mineral, or what not. In man it is his essential self; it persists throughout all the evolutionary transformations in the life cycle and gathers around itself the life-atoms at each new incarnation of the reincarnating ego.
Thus the monad in any person is his inner god, the celestial buddha of his own septenary constitution, or again his individual Immanent Christ.
The rays from the person’s individual monad which form the complex essential nature of his being, are the sources of the different centers in the human constitution, and in themselves are children monads, as it were, from their common source.
Monas. See MONAD
Monas Monadum In Leibniz’ system of monads, the supreme monad, which is infinite and upon which there depend three classes of finite monads. This supreme monad held the place of God, an infinite perfect spirit, a Person of absolute power, wisdom, and goodness. In this case, the supreme monad is cosmically more than a person — for etymologically person means a mask or vehicle through and from which issue the attributes and powers of something incomparably higher than itself. Equivalent to the summit of the human hierarchy.
Monera, Moneron [from Greek moneres single] Coined by Haeckel for a group of unicellular organisms, without nucleus and multiplying by fission. Supposed to be neither animal nor vegetable but the root of both, the point at which “organic” life first appears from the minerals. Some of Haeckel’s elementary organisms have since proved to be merely chemical.
Often used in the SD to denote a primordial particle of organic life, just as atom and molecule may be used for inorganic matter. Organic or inorganic do not signify living or nonliving, but merely entities or particles without organs even of the most primitive type. All matter, whether organized or in its so-called inorganic forms, is filled with life or vitality, each entity possessing life of its own type and therefore being as fully vitalized in its own sphere as are the most highly organized entities.
Monism A philosophy which derives all phenomena from a single origin: thus, making mind the result of matter; matter the result of mind; or again, mind and matter the result of some unitary essence prior to both. Far from being incompatible with dualism, monism is logically interdependent with it. Duality prevails everywhere, and everywhere dualities can be referred back to unities. The triad is the true number of manifestation and the key to the dispute between monists and dualists. See also DUALISM
Monkey Any simian, but often restricted to the smaller, long-tailed simians, in contradistinction to apes. These monkeys according to occult history are descended from the offspring of unawakened human beings of the third root-race, who united with certain animals. The larger anthropoid simians or apes were produced later by renewed intercourse between undeveloped Atlanteans and the then existing part-human, part-animal descendants of the creatures just described. Thus, in theosophical writings, a distinction is drawn between simians or true monkeys, and the anthropoids or true apes.
The earliest race of human beings on this earth, of the third root-race, presented an appearance which today would be called to a certain extent monkey-like, but not because they were monkeys or descended from simians, but because that was the appearance presented by early human bodies. The apes and monkeys being descended at different times from the human race as one side of their ancestry, naturally show somewhat of the physical characteristics of these early human parents of their own stock on one side. See also ANTHROPOIDS
Monkey God. See HANUMAN
Monogenes (Greek) Begotten alone; of the same parentage. Plutarch defines it as “only begetting,” in reference to the meaning of Persephone in the Mysteries. It is the reappearance of a monad after its period of cosmic repose and nirvanic absence from the plane of cosmic manifestation.
The common Christian significance of only begotten should be distinguished from the original Greek significance of “brought forth alone.” Monogenes has direct reference to the reappearance or reissuing forth of the monad from the bosom of the Boundless, the reappearing monad thus being envisaged as a spiritual individual appearing as such unity or individual “alone”; and because such reappearance is on a high spiritual plane, the term later became wrongly restricted only to the rebirth of the Logos, which is only one of its meanings, as the term applies equally well to the reissuing forth of any one of the hosts of monads on its own plane.
Monogenesis [from Greek monos single + genesis origin] The theory that all forms of life were developed from a single cell, or that all humanity is sprung from a single primitive stock or root; opposed to polygenesis. Monogenesis may also mean that any living stock of beings, such as the human, sprang from a single pair formerly living on some one part on the earth’s surface. Modern scientific theories of polygenesis are a far closer approximation to the theosophic view, which states that the earliest or primordial forms of the human stock on earth sprang more or less contemporaneously from seven different roots (imbodied groups of lunar monads) living more or less together in the regions surrounding what is now the north pole, which then enjoyed a tropic or semi-tropic climate. It was from the dispersion of these seven different root-stocks that later sprang the various human races known in legend, story, and history. In a cosmic sense it is possible to trace back all living forms to the original cosmic monad from which, as from a cosmic fountain, flowed forth into later manifestation the infinitely varied phenomena of the solar system. However, even this quasi-mongenetic origin of a solar system was brought about by polygenetic seeds of life cooperating to produce it.
Monotheism Belief in a single or supreme god; opposed to polytheism and pantheism, although all polytheistic forms of thought recognize a supreme divinity, of which all others were children or offspring; and pantheism itself, when properly understood, likewise includes all forms or varieties of polytheistic belief. The Hebrews are a notable example of a people following a very definite monotheism in their religious beliefs; subsequent to this were the systems of Christianity and Islam. If deity be regarded as periodic cosmic mind or intelligence incessantly evolving through its emanated hierarchies — the structure inner and outer of the universe — which is the abode of such divinity, governed in its operations by its own spirit-wisdom, far transcending the remotest shadow of the limitations we call personality, then in this sense theosophists might be called pantheists, polytheists, and even monotheists, all in one. But where deity is by human imagination endowed with human attributes, however sublimated, and with human limitations of personality, an unphilosophical, impossible, and unnatural monotheism results. Such a god — being the offspring of human imagination, a creature of human fancy — cannot be universal, and must submit to rivalry with the humanly imagined gods of other religions.
Moon The earth’s relatively little satellite is but a partial representative of the aggregate of occult influences or powers, of polar character, known among the ancients combinedly as Lunus-Luna, and its effect upon the earth includes much that is baneful as well as much that has been necessary in evolutionary development; but the moon is only a withered, decaying unit of a whole lunar planetary chain. The statement that sun and moon have existed through aeonic time periods, refers not to our decaying physical satellite which is but the dead body of now departed vital, spiritual, and intellectual essences, but to these essences themselves.
The moon that we see is the kama-rupa of one of the lunar chain’s seven or twelve globes, each one having its own kama-rupa, since the entire chain of globes is dead. The material of our kama-rupic moon, however, is on the same prakritic plane as that on which our senses operate, so that it is visible and appears to be the original physical body of the moon. Besides transmitting to us certain influences from the sun, the moon also absorbs from and sends back influences to the earth. Hence its effects upon gestation, physiological and mental cycles, the growth of vegetation, the periodic habits of many animals, and various other natural phenomena.
In theogonies, the moon is associated with the manifestation of the so-called feminine principle in universal nature on our cosmic plane, with especial relation to our earth; hence the moon is a minor form of the Great Mother, known by many names in various theogonies, and when applied to the moon in Mediterranean thought often called by the names Diana, Juna, Isis, and the like. Moon is spoken of as a triple deity, Diana-Hecate-Luna — Luna in occult corporeal influences as a dead planet, Diana in connection with its solar relations, and as Hecate manifesting occult lunar influences in the Underworld — these again often named Diva triformis, tergemina, triceps. Some cultures, such as the Hindu and Scandinavian, portray the lunar deity as masculine. All lunar deities have a twofold aspect, supernal and infernal, spiritual and material; and the astronomical moon has its light and dark phases, while the lunar crescent has its horns, which may point up or down, making the symbols of the dragon’s head and tail, which stand for the north and south nodes of the lunar orbit.
The moon is the giver of one form of life, as well as of lower forms of mind, to our earth and its inhabitants; while the sun is the giver of life in general to the planetary system, as well as of the higher forms or aspects of mind. Remembering the extremely occult character of both moon and sun, when they are spoken of as givers this in no sense implies that they give to those who have it not, but rather give in the sense of being transmitters, nurses of, and producers of what already exists in those to whom the gifts are thus given. Thus a father or mother may be said to be the giver of life to the children, although the children themselves are in and from themselves a vital fountain: giving here means transmitting, fostering, producing, but not creating and donating.
The sun, moon, and cross in some ancient mystical thought form a symbolic triad, closely connected with the other triads of spirit, soul, and body or of Father-Mother-Son. Lunar worship is often compared unfavorably with solar worship as referring to the material side of nature. Jehovah, for instance, is disparagingly spoken of as a lunar god. Terms such as lunar magic or the lunar path refer to other extremely important natural facts, connected with the moon in its lower occult aspect as the orb of night, of death as well as of lunar life, etc.; further, these terms are always mentioned in connection with psychic rather than spiritual powers. See also LUNAR CHAIN
Moon-colored Races Four principal racial colors are enumerated in the Stanzas of Dzyan: moon-colored (yellow-white), yellow like gold, red, and brown or black. The subraces of the fourth root-race had these colors in serial order, and every root-race repeats the sequence in its own time period. In one allegory, Siva as Svetalohita, a root-kumara, goes through these (and other unmentioned) transformations of color. The moon-colored race disappeared entirely when the present fifth root-race appeared.
Moon Gods. See LUNAR GODS
Morality, Morals. See ETHICS
Moriah (Hebrew) Moriyyāh In the Bible, the Mount in Jerusalem on which Solomon built the temple (2 Chron 3:1).
Morning Star Astronomically, any star which rises after midnight, although referring particularly to Jupiter and especially Venus as the herald of the morning sun. Occasionally used in theosophical literature as bearing upon the duality in nature, when associated with the evening star, with especial application to higher and lower human nature. See also LUCIFER
Mosaic Books. See PENTATEUCH
Mot (Phoenician) Also Mut. Equivalent to Ilus, original cosmic substance or stuff which, according to the cosmogony of Sanchoniathon, was produced by the embrace of Chaos and Wind, a name for cosmic spirit as the Greek pneuma or Latin spiritus means both spirit and wind. Out of Mot proceeded the monads of the hierarchies of universal manifestation, and consequently the emanation of the universe. Like the Sanskrit mahat, it alludes to the cosmic womb out of which emanated the universe.
Mother-Father. See LOGOS; SVABHAVAT
Mother Nature The productive and generative powers of cosmic spirit, considered from the human standpoint as a feminine agent in universal nature, and hence often called the Great Mother, the Immaculate Virgin, space, the cosmic deep, mula-maya or root-maya, etc. The first stage of manifestation is the representation of the plain or empty disk, cosmic infinitude; the second stage is the First Logos or the disk with the central point; and the third stage, to which Mother Nature refers, is the disk with the horizontal diameter, or the Second or Manifest-Unmanifest Logos.
Mother Space, Mother Water Names for Deva-matri, the cosmic matrix, Aditi, the Boundless, the Great Sea, the watery or feminine principle as contrasted with the fiery or masculine.
Motion The essential characteristic of abstract motion, whether in space, time, or consciousness, commonly manifesting as change. Absolute abstract motion is one of two aspects under which is symbolized Be-ness, the other being abstract space, yet these are and must be one in essence; it is also called the Great Breath. On the planes of manifestation, motion prevails as the positive pole, equivalent to jivatman, spirit, etc., according to which plane is meant. Consciousness and thought are manifestations of motion in the guise of active intelligence, and are necessarily connected with their appropriate forms of prakriti or mulaprakriti. The beginning of differentiation is spoken of as the beginning of change. Life manifests as motion, and its passing from plane to plane produces what is called birth and death. Absolute motion and what humans call absolute rest — really but another form of incessant motion — converge into one. The tendency of cosmic motion is ever toward the spiral; in kinematics, simple harmonic motion generates ellipses, of which the straight line and the circle are limiting cases.
Nineteenth-century science postulated matter and motion as two bases on which to build, but the attempt to define the nature or cause of motion within the limits of the science thus set up was futile. Motion was defined as an effect of force, force being itself expressed in terms of motion. To reach the cause of physical motion we must go outside of physics and refer it to spirit or some ultraphysical agency.
Motto of the Theosophical Society. Satyan nasti paro dharmah, usually translated: “There is no religion higher than truth” — adopted from the motto of the Maharaja of Benares.
Mount Atlas, Meru, Sinai, etc. See ATLAS, SINAI, MERU, ETC.
Mountains, Mundane or Holy Mountains in a generic sense mean high places, whether in the physical world, the kosmos, or in man; the meeting place of immortals and mortals, the former descending, the latter ascending. Moses went up Sinai to confer with Jehovah; on Parnassus, the home of Apollo and the Muses, the rites of Bacchus were celebrated. Olympus or Meru, Atlas or Sinai, may be actual mountains, but also signify much more. Sacred mountains are found in ancient cultures, for when there was less of artificial separation between the celestial and the material, between sacred and secular, the kinship between what is above and what is below was more than a mere analogy: it was a unity.
Many of the great mystical religions refer to mundane mountains or world-mountains, whether of cosmic or terrestrial character. These myths are always extremely recondite because connected with the spiritual and psychological forces continuously at work in the solar system. They are bound up with the teachings of the other globes of the earth planetary chain, and with the relations of such globes to the solar system. Also they refer to the north pole of the earth which was the situation of the first continent on our globe when manifestation began in the fourth round. This continent, the Sacred Imperishable Land, was likewise the seat of the first race of beings who through evolution became the human and superior races. It has been called sacred and imperishable because as a land mass or massif it endures from the beginning of the fourth round to its end, without finding a final watery grave as do succeeding continental massifs. The polar land does not remain unchanged, as there is constant change through the ages involving minor subsidences and elevations and inroads of the arctic seas into the land masses, so that there is a constant shifting in topographical outline. The meaning is that as a land mass, whatever its minor changes, it remains throughout the entire globe-manvantara.
Whereas temples or fanes of initiation were found among all peoples, as much on the plains as in the mountains, it was almost invariably the custom for centers of occult training, especially the higher branches, to be found on the lofty plateaus of mountain chains, and not solely because of the need of separation from the hurly-burly of human life as found in populated districts and their cities. An important reason why mountains or secluded spots are invariably chosen for secret training centers is that the currents and waves of the astral light become quieter and more peaceful the higher one ascends above the surface of the earth.
Mout, Mouth. See MUT
Moyst Principle In the Egyptian Hermetic book, the Divine Pymander, the Moist Principle is the great deep; in ancient literature often spoken of as the waters of space, the Great Mother, or essential Mother Nature, or again considered as a more developed manifestation of Father-Mother, the Second Logos, the latter producing the first actual spatial differentiation in the cosmos manifesting itself. In medieval European alchemy Mercury is the radical moist, primitive or elementary water, containing the seed of the universe, fecundated by the solar fires. In this system the symbol of Mercury is a cross, combining the horizontal and vertical lines.
BCW - H. P. Blavatsky: Collected Writings
BG - Bhagavad-Gita
BP - Bhagavata Purana
cf - confer
ChU - Chandogya Upanishad
Dial, Dialogues - The Dialogues of G. de Purucker, ed. A. L. Conger
Echoes - Echoes of the Orient, by William Q. Judge (comp. Dara Eklund)
ET - The Esoteric Tradition, by G. de Purucker
FSO - Fountain-Source of Occultism, by G. de Purucker
Fund - Fundamentals of the Esoteric Philosophy, by G. de Purucker
IU - Isis Unveiled, by H. P. Blavatsky
MB - Mahabharata
MIE - Man in Evolution, by G. de Purucker
ML - The Mahatma Letters to A. P. Sinnett, ed. A. Trevor Barker
MU - Mundaka Upanishad
N on BG - Notes on the Bhagavad Gita, by T. Subba Row
OG - Occult Glossary, by G. de Purucker
Rev - Revelations
RV - Rig Veda
SBE - Sacred Books of the East, ed. Max Müller
SD - The Secret Doctrine, by H. P. Blavatsky
SOPh - Studies in Occult Philosophy, by G. de Purucker
TBL - Transactions of the Blavatsky Lodge (Secret Doctrine Commentary), by H. P. Blavatsky
TG - Theosophical Glossary, by H. P. Blavatsky
Theos - The Theosophist (magazine)
VP - Vishnu Purana
VS - The Voice of the Silence, by H. P. Blavatsky
WG - Working Glossary, by William Q. Judge
ZA - Zend-Avesta