Thou dost preserve the stars from wrong
And the most ancient heavens, through Thee are fresh and strong.
— Wordsworth: Ode to Duty
The wonders of the visible ocean of Space have been revealed by scientific observation and record — planets assembled in solar systems, solar systems in galaxies, myriads of them, and beyond these, super-galaxies composed of thousands of galaxies. Order and rhythm prevail in the movements and interrelations of these celestial bodies, indicating cosmic co-operation. Vast periods of time are needed to account for this majestic march of cosmic events. Contemplation of these wonders stimulates in a thinker the power to see in just proportion the affairs of any one small unit like our Earth. It also engenders profound conviction that in this ages-long weaving of the celestial pattern there is Cosmic Good Will.
For who can picture these vast systems without revering the power that holds these parts in place? What if they did not hold to their courses? What if great entities like these celestial bodies refused to be regulated in their movements? What prevents tragedies on a wholesale cosmic scale? What makes Space safe for the Celestial Commonwealth? The Theosophist answers, Cosmic Purpose and Cosmic Good Will.
We might ask concerning another wonder of the visible world. What has insured the evolutionary progress in form from the tiny amoeba to the complex, exquisite human body? Man, the Thinker, whose instrument on Earth that body is, man, who has reached his present development through no conscious effort of his own, is making urgent inquiry as to what part he is consciously to play in these vast systems of worlds that he is able with his intellect to contemplate. Can he discover and emulate in his human associations on Earth the principles of co-operation, the laws of life, according to which order and safety in solar systems and galaxies are maintained during the aeons of time it takes for the cosmic purpose to be consummated?
Theosophy answers, Man is of the stuff of stars and suns, both in his outer and his inner nature. One Hierarchy of his progenitors, the Builders, have directed the evolution of form, body, vehicle, for Man the offspring of Divinity. Another Hierarchy, that of Compassion, has in charge the advance of the inner man, whose ancestry is akin to the invisible Beings who use for body the great celestial sun and star systems. They have in hand the guidance and direction of that part of human destiny still to be unfolded, when man, abandoning "uncharted freedom," will become conscious of and obedient to, that infinite duty, which the poet intuits as Cosmic Protection and Good Will.
The most precious gift offered to the human race is the knowledge of that glorious destiny. Every year a whispering of it is heard in the human heart. Even in an age when the most material longings are in the ascendant, this divine murmur prompts towards giving. It is always linked with legends of the birth of the Great Teachers of the world, who are of the Hierarchy of Compassion. And comes when the Sun, the symbol of inner light as well as the giver of warmth and visible sunshine, is reborn and enters its northward course. Theosophy adds that it is the time when the Hierarchy of Compassion is increased by successful candidates for Initiation into conscious co-operation with the Good Will in the Cosmos.
A yearly reminder only from above? Emerson reverently notes:
If the stars should appear one night in a thousand years, how would men believe and adore, and preserve for many generations the remembrance of the city of God that had been shown! But every night come out these envoys of beauty, and light the universe with their admonishing smile.
Nightly the stars look down with their message of assurance that we have our home in a friendly universe, that we too, like the Great Beings whose visible forms are those "diamonds in the sky," may become conscious collaborators in Cosmic Purpose and Cosmic Good Will.
The Theosophical ForumTHEOSOPHICAL UNIVERSITY PRESS ONLINE