Copyright © 1977 by Theosophical University Press. All rights reserved.
The spiritual being that is the real man plays on the physical body as the master musician plays on a wondrous lute or harp. The strings of this instrument, this marvelously constructed physical frame, run from the coarsest catgut, which can produce heavy, sensual sounds, to the silver and gold, and finally to the intangible strings of the spirit; and the musician plays on these strings with masterly sweep of will when we allow it. Mostly we human beings refrain from playing on the nobler and higher strings, and play on the coarse catgut only.
As a matter of fact, this body of ours is one of the marvels of the universe. We at present have no realization of what it contains, of its powers to be developed in the future as evolving time will bring them forth, but which we can hasten in their growth now. These powers of the human being function through the seven main centers of energies in the body: seven organs or glands, sometimes called chakras. (Strictly speaking, the chakras are the astral organs or functions, and their specific allocations to physical organs are surrounded in exoteric literature with mystery and uncertainty. They have been known and studied, however, in certain schools since time immemorial.) To enumerate these generally, from the lowest up: the genital, the liver and spleen, the cardiac, the brain as a whole, the pituitary gland and the pineal gland. There are others subordinate to these, but the above are the most important. And strangely enough, they are as it were paired: the heart and the brain; the pineal and the pituitary; the liver and spleen; and the pair of the lowest couple, as a matter of fact, is the solar plexus — but this is a story by itself.
Every one of these organs or glands has its own appropriate function, activity, purpose, and work in the human frame. By our will, by proper study, by living the life, we can make the higher, the incomparably more powerful ones within us, active far more than they presently are, and thus become gods among men. Most of us do not do that. We live in the world below the human diaphragm as it were. And yet, despite our worst efforts to kill the god within us, to destroy its holy work, the pineal gland and the pituitary gland, and the heart, continue functioning just the same. We are protected against our own foolishness.
The lowest of these chakras can be made one of the noblest by changing its functional direction for creative spirituality. Waste brings loss; that particular organ in the human frame can be made the organ for the production of the mightiest and noblest works of genius. It has a spiritual as well as a physical side, as all these organs and glands have. But how many remember the holiness of spiritual creation, so to say?
The liver is the seat of the personal man, the kama-manasic individual; and the spleen, the lieutenant of the former, is the seat of the astral body, the linga-sarira. Even at seances — which I would not advise anyone to frequent unless he goes there knowing more than the average man does — it has been shown how the astral body of the medium oozes out, first as a slender thread, and then becomes, when the manifestation is genuine, what is now called "ectoplasm," really thickened astral stuff; and it is from the spleen that this astral body comes forth.
Then the heart, the organ of the god within us, of the divine-spiritual: here in the physical heart considered now as a spiritual organ — and not merely as a vital pump, which it is also — is the god within; not in person, but its ray touches the heart and fills it as it were with its auric presence — a holy of holies. Out of the heart come all the great issues of life. Here is where conscience abides, and love and peace and perfect self-confidence, and hope, and divine wisdom. Their seat is in the mystic heart of which the physical organ is the physical vital instrument.
The brain as a whole is the organ of the brain-mind, the field of activity of our ordinary reasoning, ratiocinative mentation by which we think ordinary and even higher thoughts, and by which also we go about our daily tasks. But connected with the brain are the two wonderful glands, the pineal and the pituitary, already mentioned. The pineal gland is as a casement opening out into infinite seas and horizons of light, for it is the organ that in us receives the direct mahatic ray, the ray direct from the cosmic intellect or mahat. It is the organ of inspiration, of intuition, of vision.
The heart is higher, because it is the organ of the individual's spiritual nature, including the higher manas or spiritual intellect. When the heart inflames the pineal gland and sets it vibrating rapidly, then so strong is the inflow of spiritual force that the man experiencing this has his very body clothed in an aureole of glory. A nimbus is behind his head, for as the pineal gland vibrates rapidly the inner eye is opened and sees infinity; and the aureole or nimbus is the energic outflow from this activity of the pineal gland.
The pituitary gland is the lieutenant of the pineal. It is the organ of will and hence also of automatic growth; the organ of will and urge and growth and impulse. But when the pineal sets the pituitary vibrating in synchrony with its own vibration, we have a god-man, for there is the intellect envisaging infinity. Then the divinity in the heart speaks and vibrates synchronously with the pineal gland, and the pituitary thus inspired to action of will, works through the other chakras or organs and makes the entire man a harmony of higher energies — relatively godlike!
All great spiritual leaders and teachers the world over, the great men-gods of the human race, have told us how to increase the vibration of the pineal gland in the skull. The first rule is to live as a true man. It is as simple as that. Do everything you have to do, and do it in accordance with your best. Your ideas of what is best will grow and improve. The next rule is to cultivate specifically as units the higher qualities which will make you superiorly human as contrasted with inferiorly human. Be just, be gentle, be forgiving, be compassionate and pitiful. Learn the wondrous beauty of self-sacrifice for others; there is something grandly heroic about it. Keep these things in your heart; believe that you have intuition; live in your higher being. When this can be kept up continuously so that it becomes your life, habitual to you, then the time approaches when you will become a man made perfect, a glorious Buddha. You will manifest the Immanent Christ within you, you will imbody it. There is the spiritual physiology of the whole matter.
The pineal gland was in earliest mankind an exterior organ of physical vision, and of spiritual and psychic sight. But due to the evolutionary course that the human frame followed, as time passed on and our present two optics began to show themselves, the pineal gland or the "third eye," the "Eye of Siva," the "Eye of Dangma," began to recede within the skull, which latter finally covered it with bone and hair. It then lost its function as an organ of physical vision, but has never ceased to continue its functions even now as an organ of spiritual sight and insight. When a man has a hunch, the pineal gland is commencing to vibrate gently. When a man has an intuition, or an inspiration, or a sudden flash of understanding, the pineal gland is beginning to vibrate still more strongly, albeit softly, gently. It functions still, and can be cultivated to function more, if we believe in ourselves and in our innate spiritual power.
As a matter of fact the pineal gland is connected with what will in time come to be our seventh sense. There are, according to the ancient wisdom, two more senses to be developed, making seven in all. It is a difficult thing to describe just what these senses will be, because as they are not yet existent and working in and through us as manifested activities, we have no names for these virtually nonexistent powers. The sixth sense might be described as psychic or psycho-spiritual sensitivity; just as touch is sensitivity of the skin. This psychic sensitivity does not mean knowing what everyone is thinking. It means impressionability, being subject to psychic impressions of many and various kinds, a sense therefore which can be very valuable, but likewise very treacherous and clothed with peril unless we be eternally on guard.
I think it is due to the infinite kindness of the gods above us that the sixth sense has not yet been developed. It is coming even now slowly into activity, very feebly as yet, but beginning to show itself; and this accounts for the large number of so-called psychics in the world, who are as a rule, because of the lack of common human moral development, unsteady people. Thus, if that sense were to come to us now in its fullness, it would be a gift such as that given to Hercules. It might burn us to death like the robe of the centaur Nessus. We are not yet sufficiently developed ethically to carry a sense like that with safety to us, to our sanity, to our health, and highest of all, to our duty to our fellow human beings.
The seventh sense I would call the development of interior, instant, spiritual cognition, intuition, as far as it can be developed in us human beings in this round on this globe. Its organ, the Eye of Siva, or "third eye," should more correctly be called the "first eye," because it preceded the other two, and should not be spoken of as though it came in as a lame and limping third. It is, as said, even today partially functional, but it has very hard going, mainly due to the work of the two eyes which overcame it. As time passes the two eyes will grow slowly more perfect in function, but will recede in importance; and the "first eye" will come again into its own. It did function in other rounds, during the third and even the second, weakly during the first; because during the first round the monads which we call egos now were then spiritual and semi-spiritual beings, as it were in a samadhic condition on this plane, practically unconscious; but — strange paradox — because of the functioning of this direct consciousness from within in those earliest beings, they had thoughts which embraced infinitude, with scarcely any exterior consciousness of the outside world. This same condition of the first round was repeated in the first race of this fourth round.
It is this Eye of Siva which will function again one day as the organ of our seventh and highest sense. And when that time comes to pass it will unite in function with the heart; and when these two unite their fluids and energies, we have a perfected man.
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