The Theosophical Forum – October 1948

A CHARGE AND A TRUST — James A. Long

We are in the midst of a conflicting people, of an obstinate, ignorant people seeking to know the truth, yet not able to find it for each seeks it only for his own private benefit and gratification, without giving one thought to others. — The Mahatma Letters, p. 252

Great events in the history of civilization are seldom recognized as such when they occur. More often than not generations must pass before their true significance is seen and felt. Nevertheless, the efforts of the pioneers of progress make their impress upon the screen of time for the permanent benefit of mankind.

Take our own H. P. B. Generations more are likely to pass before her true part in the progress of the race will be known by other than her few followers. Yet H. P. Blavatsky and her work are having more effect upon present civilization in all branches of thought than is commonly realized. Were one able to examine every library, for instance, and particularly those of universities, he would find her Secret Doctrine, its pages soiled, worn, and dog-eared with use, studied alike by scientists, philosophers, and progressive religionists, who adapt her works to their good advantage. This without credit; but who would rejoice more than H. P. B. herself. It is what she and Those who directed this work hoped for.

Others use her teachings, presenting them as their own, but not to so good an advantage. Their efforts, twisting whole truths into halves, and festooning them with fanciful but hollow words to attract the selfish, represent but the shadow of the light of the true message.

But "the gods cast no shadows"!

Now, at the end of fifty years of the new cycle (1898-1948), we find the world-stage set for another act in the drama of spiritual progress. That there has been "injustice in the world" and "a decline of virtue," none can doubt. Karma has drawn together the necessary combination of elements to produce a phase of that phenomenon which calls forth a portion of the Supreme — "for the preservation of the just, the destruction of the wicked, and the establishment of righteousness."

The recent publication of The Dialogues of G. de P. is signal evidence, and represents a major victory for Those we serve. What tribute to the pioneer efforts of H. P. B. and to Those whose agent she was, that the institution they founded should be the vehicle for the expression of this force. Need there be further vindication? Her adjuration to keep the link unbroken did not fall on deaf ears. Her strength of purpose and great sacrifice have borne fruit — not merely intellectual betterment, but spiritual sustenance to strengthen the hearts and minds of men through this dark age of Kali-yuga. Our civilization moves a step nearer its true goal.

Here again, the real significance of The Dialogues may not be recognized by the many for generations. But what of the few?

To use these Dialogues for the enlightenment of the individual student is important, but not primary. More significant, perhaps, will be the use of this new information by the scientist, the philosopher, and the religionist. It may stimulate them to a more active collaboration in their efforts for the advancement of the whole. Yet even this, although an encouraging outlook, is not of foremost importance. To F. T. S., however, the event is of paramount significance. For many it is merely the "esoteric become exoteric." But what does that mean? Is it only that now one can have more of the occult truth without the pledge "to do" — without the discipline, without the sacrifice? Or does it mean that the T. S., having earned a place in this world-drama, now offers its members the opportunity to seize their inheritance and become helpers in the genuine occult sense — worthy agents of Those whom we call the Guardians of humanity.

The insignia "F. T. S." takes on a more serious character when we consider the role of the T. S. on this greater human stage today. It imposes both a charge and a trust. Strong is the charge; and great is the responsibility that rests upon the shoulders of those who accept the trust.

The seriousness of this challenge to every member cannot be minimized. The time has arrived when a "label" on the lapel of one's consciousness, however self-satisfying, means nothing, whether he be F. T. S., a student of the esoteric school, or one of a so-called inner group. The event of The Dialogues is indication that henceforth all, karmically, have linked themselves with the grave task of preparing for the next major event in the life of the Movement. The purpose is plain. It is the story of the "Gita" all over again. But beware — those of us who take our responsibility lightly and work with ambition in our hearts.

In 1882 the Master M. wrote that the world had clouded the light of true knowledge, and that selfishness would not allow its resurrection. Today, selfishness of course is still rampant, but in spite of this the T. S. has won the right to share with the world a greater portion of that "true knowledge." Our gratitude for this privilege runs deep when we realize that in the same letter he said: "It is he alone who has the love of humanity at heart, who is capable of grasping thoroughly the idea of a regenerating practical Brotherhood who is entitled to the possession of our secrets. He alone, such a man — will never misuse his powers, as there will be no fear that he should turn them to selfish ends." (1)

And that is our TRUST.

To guard with jealous care our privilege to serve in Masters' Cause; to exemplify the trust placed in us as F. T. S.; to build stronger that wall of protection around Their work; to hold firmly the touchstone of selflessness that makes of us worthy instruments; to sacrifice our every action to the common good of all — thus will we help Them that They in turn shall be able, at the appointed time, to send forth another who will lead the way into the next century and on to a still closer realization of the Brotherhood of Man.

FOOTNOTE:

1. The Mahatma Letters, p. 252. (return to text)


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