The Theosophical Forum – September 1939

TO INVESTIGATE THE POWERS INNATE IN MAN — A. Bonset

It looks so simple, this fifth Object of the T. S.: "To investigate the powers innate in man"; and yet, if we duly reflect upon the meaning of these words, a picture is woven before our mind's eye, so beautiful, so vast, that it moves our heart of hearts. Being Theosophists, and having the Theosophical books at our disposal, we can perhaps better understand the grand unity of the Universe, which we human beings are a part of, and with which our inmost nature connects us. It is just for this reason that everything is contained in us that the Cosmos contains, every force, every energy, every power. Hence all this is within our reach, but it does not mean that we are able to employ these powers and forces at present, for many of them are latent, and it depends solely upon our own evolution whether or not we shall discover these powers and allow them to affect us.

How can we better develop ourselves than by trying to understand our Higher Self more and more. Was not the injunction "Know thyself," which all Great Ones left to humanity, meant as a stimulus for men to develop the powers innate in them?

These simple words "Know Thyself," do not they strike us as if they were the key to solve a great mystery? And while striving for self-knowledge, we enter the Path that will lead us to all-embracing Love, to infinite compassion for all that is and lives.

We can make progress on that Path only if we drop our personality and become altogether impersonal. Develop the spiritual, divine forces and powers in us by becoming unselfish, self-forgetful, selfless; learn to forgive; love, love impersonally — this is constantly impressed upon us.

We all who stand at the beginning of the Path, have not we understood that these simple words: "Love impersonally and forgive," comprise the whole occult training? This training involves the incessant practice of the moral powers that we feel within us. All these powers are of a spiritual nature, they are Cosmic. They are present in anyone and will remain there forever.

Consider a child at school: he has to pass from one form to another in order that his sleeping intellect shall be developed, while it is essential that he should in the first place be taught the requisite knowledge, and secondly that, by means of his will, diligence and studiousness, he himself should assimilate this knowledge; and these very rules apply to the non-intellectual knowledge, the spiritual, Divine Wisdom, where adults are concerned. Just as children are taught simple subjects for the development of their intellects, similarly do we adults study the Theosophical teachings, teachings that have been preserved from time immemorial, truths that have always been known, although in times of spiritual decline it was only aspiring souls that were acquainted with them, men, who even in those dark ages, were searchers for Truth, and who received Wisdom in the ancient Mystery-Schools.

We, as fellows of the T. S., are able to receive this Wisdom and its doctrines: the Teachers place them at our disposal, but we ourselves must show the diligence, the studiousness and the wish to acquire this Divine Wisdom, these spiritual Truths.

If we reflect upon these teachings and are actually impersonal and loving in our thoughts and actions, we cannot help experiencing a certain feeling of bliss, a feeling of what I should like to call "extension of consciousness." And with extension of consciousness coincides an advance on the Path; veils fall off that prevented us from having a clear view into all these realms which, it is true, are open to us, and within our reach, but which remain hidden to us until we have made such progress on the Path that we can draw these veils aside.

Is not it a curious fact that all these powers are innate in any one of us, and that yet so few people are aware of them? Is not there an enormously vast field of activity lying before us?

For is it not through the Theosophical teachings that we became conscious, got the first glimpses at any rate, which made us understand who and what man really is? Was it not the Theosophical teachings which, from the moment that they took hold of us, led us to realms of consciousness which we had never dreamed to enter? And did not we give up ourselves to serve our fellow-men, to serve the Great Law, which teaches us to live in a selfless way, for the benefit of mankind?

As soon as a man begins to discover what great powers he possesses, and opens his soul to this endless wisdom, he enters the path that leads to true development; and mysteries, formerly concealed, are revealed to him. The attempt to develop these powers, which have been given to us in embryo, should in fact be the basis of all growth.

We must strive, with all the energy, power, and will we possess, to penetrate into our inmost nature, to turn to the Spiritual, Divine Light, which is present in anyone, to the Light that is the source of all that makes life worth living, and which can render it noble and grand. It is in this way that we can become Seers, and are allowed to look into the very Heart of Things.

And that these forces, mentioned in the fifth Object of the T. S., have nothing mysterious about them, may be demonstrated by what one of the Masters said to a chela: "You have a great love for the power of magic, but the greatest magic is the power of Love!"

Let us ever keep before us the last words of the Message H. P. B. sent to the American Convention in 1891, and which still hold good at the present moment:

"In your hands, brothers, is placed in trust the welfare of the coming century; and great as is the trust, so great is also the responsibility."


The Theosophical Forum

THEOSOPHICAL UNIVERSITY PRESS ONLINE