G. de P. — The meeting is open for questions.
Student — For a long time I have wanted definite information on this: when one looks into the atmosphere, not to look through it, but into it, one sees a number of what appear to be entities moving about apparently with a turning movement. Sometimes they are bright, and in stormy weather they appear dark and very much agitated. Are they elementals?
G. de P. — Do you mean the dancing motes?
Student — I do not mean the ordinary motes — I do not refer to them at all. What I refer to seem to be definite entities, very different from what is seen in objective vision.
G. de P. — Do you mean entities having definite shape?
Student — Very like animalculae, very small.
G. de P. — Flashing things?
Student — Very inconstant, moving about in semicircular motion.
G. de P. — If I understand you aright, I should say that they are the tribes of larger life-atoms. I suppose that everybody has seen these; and sometimes in a clear atmosphere on the top of a mountain, for instance, when looking into the atmosphere they present a wonderful sight. It is a beautiful picture: wonderful, flashing starry points, dashing in all directions. It is this to which you refer, I suppose?
Student — Yes, that is the idea.
G. de P. — They are the tribes of larger life-atoms. As a matter of fact, the entire world is full of life-atoms. There are many, many tribes and families and classes of them, some large, some small, some microscopical in size, some vastly larger; but all are moving, all dashing hither and yon, some slowly, some very rapidly, some very brilliant, some less brilliant, but all are in movement.
Everything is filled with life-atoms. In one sense of the word, they may be called the building bricks of the world. Is the answer responsive?
Student —Yes, thank you very much. It helps very much.
Student — I should like to ask if it is correct to think of the higher manas as a ray of the manasaputra, and of the lower manas as a ray of that ray?
G. de P. — The latter part of your question is correct. But I should say that the higher ego, or the higher manasic faculty in man, is the manasaputra itself. The manasaputra in the core of its being is a god, a monadic essence, but that essence is passing through the phase of its evolution when its self-consciousness is centered in the higher manasic part of its constitution. Consequently such a being is called a manasaputra. We human beings are passing through the phase of our spiritual-psychological evolution when our consciousness is self-centered — or our self-consciousness rather is centered — in the kama-manasic part of our constitution, and therefore we are humans.
Student — The reason I asked that question is because I understand that the manasaputra reincarnates; and I thought it might be a ray of the manasaputra, rather than the manasaputra itself.
G. de P. — As a matter of fact, the manasaputra does not reincarnate at all. It is far above the realms of physical flesh. It is a ray from the manasaputra which produces the astral monad which indeed incarnates. The manasaputra is so far above the physical flesh that it could not possibly affect that flesh at all unless there were the intermediate links of consciousness. We have, then, the manasaputra issuing forth from itself its ray, which is the true human being, the human soul, which in its turn issues forth from itself the astral monad working through the auric egg, and it is the astral monad which actually incarnates in flesh. Do you understand?
Student — I think so. Then that astral monad is really the higher ego?
G. de P. — Dear me, no! The astral monad is the end of the ray projected from the manasaputra. It is the tip or point of the ray, ultimately or originally issuing forth from the manasaputra, which contacts and thus enlivens and inspirits flesh — makes it alive, in fact really brings about the existence of living flesh.
The manasaputra does not incarnate. First, the monadic essence; then its child, the manasaputra; then the manasaputra's child, the human monad; then the human monad's child, the astral monad; then its child, the physical body — all these are connected by the stream of consciousness and vitality running through them all from the highest to the lowest. I repeat, the manasaputra does not incarnate.
Student — That is what I thought. It could not.
G. de P. — You are quite right. It sends forth from itself its ray, its child, which is the human soul; and even the human soul does not incarnate directly in the body, but sends forth from itself its child in turn, which is the astral monad, and this is sufficiently gross and material so that it can and does incarnate, become flesh in its lowest parts, flesh being its dregs or lees. You see, therefore, a series of steps, counting upwards, from the grossest to the ethereal, and in each one of which is a monad of its own kind. As I have told you before, there are many monads pertaining to the constitution of a human being: the divine monad, the spiritual monad, the manasic monad or manasaputra, the kama-manasic monad of a human being, the astral monad or elemental or astral-vital self. It is through this last that the other monadic elements can manifest or express themselves or work in the physical brain. They enliven or give some of their own effulgence to the physical brain, which the physical brain thereupon expresses as thought, as life, as sensitivity, and as physical consciousness.
Remember that man is a compounded entity. This fact is so supremely important that I suggest you dwell in thought upon it all the time when studying these matters. Man is a compounded entity, a pillar of light, extending from spirit to flesh: pure light in its highest or spiritual part, and growing gradually more dense and still more dense and darker and darker until it reaches or becomes flesh, which by comparison is as black as night. Do you understand this figure of speech?
Student — Thank you, yes.
G. de P. — All this process of condensation or materialization or thickening is done through and by means of the auric egg, which therefore exists on many planes. To put the same thought in equivalently accurate fashion, the auric egg has many planes of ethereality — or materiality which comes to the same thing — many planes, many layers, many degrees, many steps. The auric egg is not merely the astral atmosphere which surrounds the physical body, which is merely the lowest plane or layer or degree of the auric egg. The auric egg extends "inwards" and "upwards," directly to the divine spirit, the god within, which is surrounded by the most spiritual portion of the auric egg.
Student — We understand that previous to the time when humanity was endowed with manas it made no karma. In referring to this HPB in almost the same breath speaks of the sin of the mindless. Of course that expression aroused a question: is not the second race the karmic result of the first race?
G. de P. — Yes.
Student — If it is, then is it simply because it is the racial karma, and the karma spoken of when referring to the endowment of manas is the individual karma? Is that right?
G. de P. — Yes, your question is a very thoughtful one. The "mindless races" had no karmic moral responsibility; and HPB in the passage you refer to was alluding to ethical or moral responsibility, which is a very high kind of responsibility. But everything that is high or low or intermediate has its own natural karma, or series of natural consequences. Furthermore, these natural karmas of the different kinds are by no means all of an ethical type. The "mindless man," if ever his mindlessness put his body in danger, would necessarily and naturally have suffered pain as a consequence, which is physical karma, physical consequences. But there was no real ethical karma about it, because there was no awakened mind, no seeing, guiding mind in such case, which deliberately chose the wrong path — the path of evildoing. Do you understand?
Student — Then the sin of the mindless was not an ethical sin?
G. de P. — It was not an ethical sin, and could no more be so called than the acts of a beast today, or the acts of a little child before the child's mind has begun to manifest itself. A little child, if it falls into the fire, will be burned. This is physical karma, and of course it is karma — consequences. Karma therefore acts everywhere and always. A little child, who in a spirit of sportive play will lift a knife and perhaps stab its parent, or its brother, is not ethically responsible. There was no intent to commit murder in such case, but the consequences ensued just the same. The blow falls and the victim is injured. But, of course, on the other hand, the person who suffers, suffers because such is that person's karma.
Everything that is, is karma, but there are many kinds of karma: spiritual karma, intellectual karma, moral karma, psychical karma, astral karma, vital karma, physical karma. Along still another line of thought, there is personal or individual karma, and collective karma — as in the case of a body of people, let us say, meeting an accident or death in a sinking steamship. Again, there is family karma, national karma, racial karma, the karma of the globe — of the earth in which we are all involved — cosmic karma, universal karma. Do you now see? So HPB spoke with perfect propriety and accuracy.
To speak of karma, in the words of Mr. A. P. Sinnett, as "the law of ethical causation," is true enough as far as it goes, but it does not go far. Such karma is ethical karma. It exists, most emphatically. It is a high kind of karma; and so far as we human beings are concerned it touches us very close; but there are many other kinds of karma. Therefore karma should preferably be called the doctrine of consequences, meaning that an act anywhere, at any time, done by any being, will inevitably and naturally have its consequences. Such is karma when defined in a very general statement. Surely this ought to be clear. Is the answer responsive?
Student — Yes. And my thought then was right, that no race could succeed the previous race, except as the karma of the previous race.
G. de P. — Perfectly correct. Every succeeding race is the child of the preceding race, and is its karma, is its consequence, is its consequences. Hence the Atlantean karma still weighs heavily upon us of the fifth root-race, because we, from another standpoint again, are actually fourth-race egos, now evolved or now become fifth-race egos, and therefore manifesting and living and working in fifth-race bodies.
Student — In view of the fact of what you have said previously, I should like to ask: where is the pivotal point of the human constitution? Where is that part which the philosophers call "I am I"?
G. de P. — A very pertinent question. Here again we have an aspect of consciousness. As I have told you on other occasions, the words of the Lord Buddha are full of profound wisdom which has never been understood in the Occident, because we have not the key to one of the great Buddha's sayings: There is no immortal soul or self in man. The Occidental immediately misunderstands that statement. He thinks it means that the human being is mortal throughout. That is not the idea at all. In a compounded entity, an entity existing only by reason of its temporary composition: in that entity, as an entity, there is no immortality. If there were, then that compounded entity would last from infinity to infinity and it could never change. If it changed an iota, it would not be the same entity. Do you grasp the thought?
Many Voices — Yes, yes.
G. de P. — But change, or growth, or evolution, or progress — words which mean changing from instant to instant, growing into something better — if you catch that thought then you will see something of the inner meaning of what the Buddha called his heart-doctrine: a phrase not meaning the doctrine of the physical heart, but meaning the heart of the thing, the core of the teaching, the essential significance of the teaching; whereas the eye-doctrine is merely that which appears, the superficial part, the garment in which the heart-doctrine is hid. In other words, the heart-doctrine is the esoteric, and the eye-doctrine is the exoteric teaching.
The "I am I" resides in one of the centers of this compounded entity called man. It resides in one of the subordinate centers or component parts, which Occidentals call the human ego, in the ray of the manasaputra. You have your consciousness centered in this human ray of the manasaputra because you are passing through the kama-manasic phase of your evolution, and thus the manasaputra is the essential I am I. The manasaputra is the monad passing through the manasic phase.
Thinking along these lines on many other occasions I have told you that the human entity, being a compounded entity, is a microcosm, a little world. Every one of these components, which together make up the constitution of man, is a learning, growing, evolving monad, each one expressing itself in that particular phase of its evolutionary journey. The human soul or manasaputric ray will in future time become a manasaputra, and will then evolve in still future aeons to become a divine monad or god, by bringing out more and more what is locked up within it. But the inner god, or again the manasaputra, or again the human soul, or again the astral monad — not any one of these is the human being. The human being is the composition of all of them, all working together, and thus is a compounded entity and therefore is unstable, and hence as a compound is mortal. This seems very simple and clear. Do you or do you not understand it?
Many Voices — Yes.
G. de P. — Well, that is good! Consequently, the I am I is the human ego, that part of the composition which says "I am I," meaning not you, and not someone else, and not some other thing, but myself. This immediately shows the great heresy of separateness and hence it is not the highest element in man. There is something far higher in the human constitution than the I am I, and this higher element is the spiritual splendor of the loftier part of an individual's constitution, which splendor shines upon the human monad and stimulates its growth upwards to become like unto itself. This splendor is the manasaputra, and upon the manasaputra shines, in just the same way, the light of the god within the manasaputra's essence.
We are one and yet we are many — and it is so with every human being. The physical body is an instance in point. The physical body is also a compounded entity. It is composed of incalculable hosts of life-atoms. Each life-atom is a growing, learning, living, evolving entity, on its way to become a god in far distant aeons — just as we humans are, just as is the manasaputra. But the body, as compounded body, is not immortal. If it were immortal the body could never change. It could not even grow from childhood to adulthood. If a thing changes then immortality instantly vanishes, because immortality means fixity or crystallization, forever, without any change, always remaining just as it is. Do you understand?
Student — Thank you so much for the answer. There was, however, one point which I would appreciate your making clear about the manasaputra, and about the ray, the projection of the manasaputra; is that ray the human monad or not?
G. de P. — It is. I think I answered that it was.
Student — Then, what was it in the Buddha when he died that went through all his principles three times, as you have explained on a previous occasion? Was that the same thing, or was it the consciousness of the Buddha?
G. de P. — The consciousness of the Buddha is the buddhic splendor, which is the manushya-buddha or human buddha, in other words the pure unveiled manasaputra. Please remember that every entity is a compounded entity. I must repeat this, because evidently you have not fully understood. This compounded entity comprises a celestial buddha or inner god — two ways of saying the same thing. The Buddhist says the celestial buddha. Occidentals in their present age are accustomed to speak of it as the inner god. You may also call it the immanent christos, a third term for the same thing. A ray of this is the manushya-buddha. It is a growing, living entity. In the Buddha, the manushya-buddha manifests on account of the highly evolved constitution. But in average humanity this manushya-buddha is not yet manifest. Evolution has not gone far enough. In the case of average men again, the ray from the manushya-buddha is the human ego of the buddha. In the case of a buddha, this human ego is far evolved along the path. In average men, it is but slightly evolved.
Now therefore this passage of the consciousness of the Buddha, which is referred to in the Buddhist scriptures, has reference to the human ego of the Buddha. It ascended from the ordinary human consciousness when death ensued for the Buddha, upwards into the spiritual, and touched the divine. Then it came back again along the pathway of the inner constitution, and the Buddha then opened his eyes. He closed them again, and the same human consciousness ascended a second time through the interior stages, ever more high: touched or became at one with the celestial buddha for a few fugitive instants, and then descended again for the second time, and when the brain-mind was reached the Buddha opened his eyes. For the third time, the same thing happened, and after the third opening of the eyes, the Blessed One expired.
In other words, the celestial buddha entered into nirvana — or no, pardon me, I will withdraw that. The manushya-buddha then left the lowest principles of his being to fall apart at the death, and the manushya-buddha then remained in the astral realms with all parts of his constitution as a nirmanakaya, excepting only the physical body, the linga-sarira, and the gross animal vitality or prana. In other words, all the Buddha was there except the lowest compounded vehicle. Such is a nirmanakaya.
As a matter of fact, you may know that when even the average human being dies, what HPB refers to as the panorama which the physical brain sees passing — a rememorizing of everything that has taken place in the life just lived from the earliest record of memory until the last instant of individual consciousness — is merely a repeating of the process of dying that I have just spoken to you about as having occurred to the Buddha. In the case of the average human being, because he is not spiritual enough, his consciousness cannot follow it, for he is not conscious in the highest parts of his constitution. Hence the only element that remains conscious is the physical brain-mind, for a short time rememorizing all the events of the life that has closed. This consciousness gently and softly finally fades away; at a certain instant unconsciousness then supervenes, as quietly as the passing of a shadow — and this is death.
In the case of the Buddha, however, on account of his highly evolved inner constitution, there was this self-conscious ascent along the planes or layers of consciousness, up to the highest, and then down again; then up to the highest, and then down again; then up to the highest, and then down again for the third time. After this the body was cast off, or, as Westerners say, the body expired — the man died.
Now, referring to the question once more in order to clear up another point with regard to the "I am I," remember that this I am I is the egoic part of man's constitution, but it is not the fundamental consciousness. It is the atmic consciousness; and very few human beings are able to become "at one" with it, although actually it is the most familiar thing in human life. If you will examine yourself closely, you will find that this sheer consciousness, this pure consciousness without any color of individuality, or of personality, or of egoity, is the most fundamental thing in you; closer to you than hand or foot, because it is your essential Self; and your ego, your individuality, your personality, and your hands and feet, are but instruments. Even your ego is but its channel, or perhaps better expressed, a whirl or knot in the stream of fundamental consciousness.
Student — In the West, in religion and literature, this idea of immortality is one of the chief things thought of.
G. de P. — It is.
Student — Now, in spite of that, many persons have never desired it. They have never wanted to go to heaven. They have not felt that they would miss anything by not going to heaven, as was held up to them as a possibility or an impossibility.
Now is this condition of the desire for immortality and the dwelling upon it, as it has been dwelt on in the West, inevitable, as the real teaching has been lost? Is it one of the bogies that will be laid by the revival of the true teaching?
G. de P. — Yes, it is. Furthermore, this bogy of a longing for personal immortality is the most fecund, fertile, fruitful, womb of human misery and sin; because the desire for personal immortality is exactly the same thing as the desire for continuous, personal gratification. This bogy is an insatiate craving to continue, to get, to be, for yourself, instead of the consciousness of this fundamental reality, the impersonal life-consciousness, which is within you all the time, which never leaves you, which is eternal, and which actually is you. Personal immortality is a bogy, and really it is a devilish thing. It is the mother of sin, of human unhappiness, of misery, and of fear: of fear to die, of fear to lose, of fear not to achieve, of fear not to gain, of fear not to live. It belongs to the lower part of our constitution.
The man who truly knows himself, who knows the essential "I am" within him, the essential life, lives in the Everlasting — which means the ever-evolving. He lives with everything that is. He is at home anywhere. He has no fear. He has no worries. He knows that he is — I am! But the lower manifestation of the I am I of egoity is imperfect, and being an imperfect thing its vision is clouded. It is always hungry to be itself, to be more itself, to get things for itself. It fears it will lose. It does wrong acts to satisfy this wrong hunger; and, as I say, selfishness and sin and misery and pain are the children of this bogy.
It is at once obvious that far from being a doctrine of unreasoning pessimism, this teaching of the Buddha is a fountain of hope and of strength. I think that anyone is an arrant fool who wants to be personally immortal. It is against all nature's laws and processes, because nature's essential law is growth, change, progress, evolution, expanding consciousness. And therefore the Buddha said very truly, hitting at the root of the evil: "There is no unchanging soul or self in man." It is true, because everything is changing. Everything is growing.
Indeed, nature proclaims it on every side. Look at the child: born from a microscopic life-germ, he grows up a six-foot man, and then death ensues. Look at the tree springing from the seed; look at the flower; look at the opening bud; look at the nebula in space: everything is moving in change, in growth, in progress, becoming something else; and from the highest standpoint this means learning, a spiritual becoming. As Heraklitus, another much-misunderstood sage of Greece, expressed the same thought: panta rhei, everything flows; meaning everything is in movement.
Are there any other questions?
Student — As I understand it, in the first race of our round, the fourth, we did not have speech. I suppose we had no self-conscious thought. And then in the third race, after a great deal of effort, we finally developed a certain sort of speech. In the fourth we developed language; and in this present race we have the various languages that we now use. What I would like to know is this: In the next race, shall we have only one language; and in the seventh race shall we have none? Will it be simply mutually conscious thought, a perfect understanding without having to translate thought into physical carriers?
G. de P. — You are speaking of the fourth round, the present round, and of this earth, of course.
Student — Yes.
G. de P. — No, the sixth race will have languages, just as the fourth had them and the fifth has them, and so also will the seventh race; but there will be a constant tendency for languages to become more alike unto each other. In the seventh round, even on this fourth-plane globe, there will however be one language, and that language will be almost a voiceless speech. There will be transmission of thought along the etheric currents, a far greater and higher thing than mere thought-transference. Beings in those ages will know what is passing around them and in the minds of their fellow beings. We fell down very greatly indeed when as a race we acquired speech. Speech is not at all something to be proud of, and in the present state of the world it is often a positive pest! It is a feeble instrument of thought, and everybody knows how inadequate words are to convey thoughts.
The individuals of the first race did not need speech. They did not have it, because they did not need it. Therefore it had not come into existence. They had not descended far enough into matter. They had not lost their inner powers sufficiently to need the acquirement of the feeble substitute for voiceless intercommunication that men call speech. The first race was in a state in many ways much like that of a newborn child. A newborn child has no speech as such. It makes queer little noises and coo-coos, and expresses itself in a manner that everybody knows. Mentally speaking, the first race was in a daze, in a dream. It didn't talk. It did not want to talk, and in fact did not have anything to talk about.
The individuals of the second race were a little worse. From making occasional inarticulate noises, they finally began to utter more or less musical sounds, and also squeaks and grunts and groans, and a series of musical notes, but at first more or less unconsciously. Finally through habit these different sounds began to mean something to those who heard them. Certain noises began to signify danger. Certain other noises began to signify pleasure. It is the same with the beasts today. It is the same to a certain extent with the human child. Before the child learns speech the parents very readily understand the attempts of the child to express its wants by more or less musical or unmusical noises, or by cryings, and by strange sounds of various kinds.
In the early part of the third race these noises had become more or less — how may I express it? — not linguistically classified, but more or less systematized or formulated, and thus true speech began. Early speech in the third race was largely onomatopoetic, as linguists say, that is, sounds expressive of the thing itself — something which exists even today among us. We talk of the swish of water, or the booming of cannon or thunder, or of rattle and clap-trap. As you see the sounds convey the idea.
In the fourth race fully inflected speech was developed — a purely mental production. I shall be very glad when we can do without speech. Even today, although the speechless use of speech — if I may so express myself — is but poorly evolved, yet even today a great many human beings already begin to understand, at least sometimes, without words what others mean — by a gesture, a motion of the hand, or by a wink of the eye, a movement of the leg. Understanding is thus had of what the other person means. This is voiceless communication of intelligence, and it will go on developing and improving more and more through the ages and through the future races, until speech itself will finally vanish and men will communicate with each other without speech.
A time comes in esoteric training, in occult training, when the teacher has no longer need to meet his pupils in class or in a group. The teacher may be occupied in whatever he may be doing: sitting in his home, or perhaps traveling, or on horseback, or in an automobile, or in an airplane, and send out his messages by communication along the pathways of the ether by what people now call thought-transference; and his highest pupils will receive the messages instantly. The pupils themselves may be anywhere. The teacher may have a hundred pupils or more scattered all over the world; and yet they will all get the message, if awake, at the same time. Furthermore, the teacher has a means of calling the attention of his pupils to the fact that he is preparing to send a voiceless message along the etheric currents. HPB used to refer to this call as the astral bells. These bells have a silvery sound. It is hard to say whether this sound is heard only interiorly or by the physical ear, sometimes rarely by both, but mostly with the interior ear. The sound is like that made by the plucking of a silver cord, or by the sweet ringing of a silver bell, just a note or two. It means: Prepare! Ready! Attention!
Student — On one occasion in the Temple, in speaking of the inner rounds, you said that the reincarnating ego, after death, passes up the ascending arc, having at least one imbodiment on each of the ascending globes of this chain; and that at a later date the reincarnating ego again descends to this globe. How then can it be said that we belong to any one globe at the present time more than to another; and that we are now on globe D as part of the life-wave of globe D only?
G. de P. — Are you referring to what happens after death?
Student — Yes. You spoke of that in the Temple, saying that the reincarnating ego is imbodied in each of the other globes of this chain. Now therefore how can it be said that it belongs to any one globe alone?
G. de P. — It does not. It belongs to the planetary chain.
Student — Well, I do not quite understand the difference between that and the life-wave passing from one globe to another. Is the life-wave passing along all the time?
G. de P. — The life-wave passes from globe to globe of a planetary chain according to certain cyclical intervals. But while the life-wave does this as an aggregate body of evolving entities, nevertheless each one of such entities, distributively or individually, at death must, is obliged to, follow the lines of communication in the cosmos, which lines I have usually called the circulations of the universe. Is what I have said responsive to your question?
Student — Well, not altogether. May I put it in another way then? How do we know that those around us necessarily belong to this globe D at the present time? They may be only visitors from another globe to this globe?
G. de P. — They don't "belong" to this globe D. Every entity belongs to all the globes of the planetary chain. But we are here together as a life-wave on this globe D at the present time. We are here together because we belong to that life-wave. Do you understand that?
Student — Yes, I understand that.
G. de P. — Well, do you?
Student — Yes, I understand that as far as it goes.
But I don't understand the difference between this passing of the individual monads and the great passing of the life-wave. Is not the life-wave composed of the monads?
G. de P. — Certainly. Let me try to give you an analogy which may help you. A root-race, for instance, is a life-wave. But that root-race is composed of individuals. Now those individuals as human beings do not live, each one, for the several million years that a root-race endures. Those individuals reincarnate. Each individual comes back to reincarnation again and again. Do you understand now?
Student — Yes, it is clear to me now. Of course we understand "once a man, always a man." Then how can the reincarnating ego imbody itself on other planets where the humans are so very much higher than we are here? That would seem like taking a tremendous jump in evolution, and then coming back to our relatively lower evolved humans on this plane and globe.
G. de P. — The phrase once a man, always a man does not mean that you cannot at any time be temporarily higher than a man. It has specific reference to the so-called doctrine of transmigration as that doctrine is so badly misunderstood in the West. It is misunderstood to mean that the human soul reincarnates or occasionally reincarnates in the bodies of beasts; and in order to combat that idea the phrase became current among us, once a man, always a man, meaning only that once a human soul has unfolded itself as a human soul it cannot ever become a beast soul and therefore reincarnate in the bodies of beasts. But it does not mean, and it should not be construed to mean, that when you become a man you remain forever thereafter a man. That is absurd.
Student — Yes, of course. Thank you very much.
G. de P. — I don't know whether I have answered your question clearly?
Student — You have given me plenty to think about.
G. de P. — No, I am not satisfied yet. You are so kindly in your questions that probably you do not care to press your question further. I want to satisfy you fully, if I can.
Student — Well, you told us that the animals on some of the ascending globes, if that is the right phrase to use, are probably hundreds of times higher than men are here on earth. Therefore, how can a reincarnating ego imbody itself on those ascending globes in anything greater than an animal there? It must be a tremendous jump for us to imbody ourselves in anything so high.
G. de P. — It is not. Not only are the beasts, or what corresponds to the beasts on the globes of the ascending arc, hundreds of times more spiritual than we men are here, but they are perhaps even thousands of times more spiritual. Furthermore, the human ego does not imbody itself again in appropriate human encasements on the three globes of the ascending arc, because I have already told you that the human monad, when death ensues, is gathered into the bosom of the monad, and rests there in its devachan until its next reincarnation comes. What does go to these three globes of the ascending arc, and what imbodies itself, is not the human monad.
The difficulty in understanding the teaching regarding all this is largely because adequately descriptive terms or words are lacking, and therefore I can only say here that the human ego is an earth-child, whereas the higher ego or the root of the reincarnating ego is the manasaputra which does imbody itself in appropriate vehicles on the three higher globes of the ascending arc just as it does through the human ego on our fourth globe D or earth.
Please remember that the animal monad, or astral monad, could under no circumstance incarnate as a human ego before it has evolved forth from within itself that human ego. All this is very mystical, but very true; and I can only hint at it. You understand what I have said, do you not?
Student — Yes.
G. de P. — All right. Now, please try to keep the thought in your mind.
Student — I would like to ask a question about consciousness, which is difficult to express in words. You have often told us to look within us, and that then we should know all because all is there. But when you say this, obviously you do not mean merely within this human body; but do you not rather mean within the vast universal self that reaches to sun and stars, which is really our higher part but is not incarnated in human flesh because too high? I know that when I study, my feelings and my consciousness — when I am aspiring or inspired — these lofty incarnations or consciousness-reactions do not seem to be merely within the personal ME. They seem to be beyond or above me, and yet they seem to be a part of me; and thus I cannot quite understand it.
G. de P. — What you say is quite right. Of course, when I ask you to examine yourselves, to look within and to try to ally yourselves with the inner god, most emphatically I do not mean to ally yourself with the lower part of your consciousness. Ordinary psychological study of that kind, such as is pursued in our universities, often leads to morbidity, to morbid, unwholesome, unhealthy thoughts. On the contrary, my meaning is: look to the god within. Try to be at one with it. Be your highest always. Study the working within you of those splendid sublime aspirations of your spiritual soul, your higher ego. Try to make them real in your daily life. That in brief is what I mean; and it is the same as the teaching of all the great sages and seers. Be the god within, be self-forgetful, impersonal, loving.
The universal and impersonal self that you sense so clearly within you and which you distinguish so sharply from the higher part of your constitution is touching you with its buddhic splendor. This higher part of you is the cosmic part of your monadic essence, whereas your personal or lower selfhood is but the dim and distant reflection of the buddhic splendor concreted in and around the merely human ego, the earth-child.
The whole aim of evolution and the whole aim of initiation is to make the lower part become at one with this higher part, and when this at-one-ment is fully achieved the individual is a human god, a full-blown buddha. This higher consciousness is the I am, and the lower part or human ego is the I am I.
Student — We are taught that the influence of the moon is evil. I cannot understand this. You have said that the seventh and highest globe of the planetary chain and also the seventh root-race of any globe are both under the particular dominance and control of the moon, or rather of that secret planet for which the moon stands as a substitute. Is it because all the monads that enter the earth-chain have to come in through the particular life-current or channel from that secret planet, the moon, and that all, when leaving it — as in the seventh race — must go out by the same channels, leaving all that belongs to the Planet of Death in the moon? Is not that why the moon is called both a planet of birth and death? As you say, the seventh globe and the seventh race are the gates of life, and also the gates of death.
G. de P. — Now, just what is your question? You have asked some very interesting things, but I do not think that I quite understand your main question on account of the many details that you speak of. I want you to clarify your question and to make it brief, so that I can give a clear answer.
Student — My question is: owing to the seventh race and seventh globe being under the dominance of the moon, is it for that reason that in going up we pass through that channel, through the moon?
G. de P. — You have touched upon the idea in part, and in part you wander from the truth.
Student — I cannot express it very clearly.
G. de P. — That is unfortunate, because if your question is not clear, how can it be clearly understood? Please remember that it is a correspondence that you are referring to. You doubtless understand what a correspondence is. It does not mean an identity. The last globe of the earth-chain, and also the last race on any globe in any round, both correspond to the moon, because each is, mystically speaking, the death-planet or the death-race before the new thing ensues. Just so the moon was the death-planetary chain giving birth to the new planetary chain or earth-chain. Do you now understand a little better?
Student — Yes, thank you.
G. de P. — Your fundamental idea is in part correct, and I am not at all surprised that you are puzzled, because some of the intricacies of the teachings regarding the rounds and the races and the globes and the planets are very difficult to follow. I myself do not pretend to understand clearly all the details. In their higher reaches they are very difficult for me. I suppose that the great teachers themselves at times have difficulty in following out every detail with perfect clarity of thought. How can it be otherwise, when the gods themselves have their own studies, have their own problems!
Consider how vast nature is: limitless, not only in physical terms, but interiorly, boundless space filled with problems of which we human beings have no conception — and yet such facts of nature must be. Thus it is natural that any aspiring student should have difficulty in understanding an intricate problem like the rounds and races, and this is not at all to be wondered at. Hence I am glad that you had the intuition to catch a thought like yours. It shows that your mind is dwelling on these problems in the silence, and that you are gathering unconsciously the fruits of your thoughts. But always remember that correspondences are not identities.
Remember also that the seventh globe or the last globe is not our moon. Remember also that correspondentially the last race on any globe in any round is not wholly under lunar influences. The idea here is only that both the seventh globe and the last race on any globe correspond in type and in work to the moon, or rather to what the moon has been, to what the moon does even at present.
Student — Could you tell us something about the Voice Bath-Qol. I know the exoteric meaning, but could you tell us anything further?
G. de P. — Bath-Qol means the daughter of the voice. This is a matter which pertains more to the Hebrew Qabbalah, and I doubt if I could make my meaning clear in the few words that I have time to give to it now. It was a Voice, according to the legend, which was alleged to "speak from on high" to certain hearers or seers. This mystical voice, whether actually heard with the physical ear or heard interiorly, was supposed to emanate from divinity, and to it was given the curious name Bath-Qol. The Hebrews like other ancient peoples had their own types of the Mysteries, their own way of looking at nature's processes, and their own religious feelings; and each such people expressed in its own terms and manners these various matters.
The Bath-Qol you may perhaps look upon as a spiritual influence which in difficult times guides the great men of the race; because all races are led, are guided, by their great men. Is the answer responsive?
Student — Yes, thank you. May I have the Sanskrit term used for the word monad?
G. de P. — Jiva is perhaps the best word that corresponds to the Pythagorean term monas or monad. But here again I must utter a word of warning, because in the exoteric Indian literature the word jiva is employed in a variety of ways, but the original Upanishad meaning of jiva is pretty close to what the theosophist means when he speaks of the monadic essence. Jiva means a life center. A monad signifies also a life center, but you see how vague this expression is. The liberated or fully evolved monad is called in Sanskrit the jivanmukta, meaning the "freed jiva," the "freed monad." A liberated monad is a monad which has attained fully evolved and self-directed individuality, has become a self-conscious expression of the inner god. Or, to speak more accurately, since the inner god and the monad are the same, it means the entity who has cast off the limitations of personality, and who lives in the highest part of his constitution as a liberated monadic essence. Such is the jivanmukta — a compound Sanskrit word coming from jiva and mukta, mukta being the past participle passive of a verb which means "to free" — hence a freed Jiva, in other words a mahatma of the highest class, a buddha.
Student — About immortality: can it then be said that there is nothing eternal and indestructible except the boundless All, and that all separate existence must ultimately fade away?
G. de P. — That is essentially correct, because universes, supergods, gods, and all inferior beings, are all impermanent as entities because all are growing or evolving. The only thing that changes not, at least according to human conceptions, which lasts from eternity to eternity and throughout infinitude, is that triune essence which is consciousness-life-substance — three things which are one, but which human consciousness, reflecting the shadow of its own composition on the background of infinitude, divides into this triad. As H. P. Blavatsky expresses it, it is the cosmic life, the same thing as universal endless and beginningless motion, which is at the same time consciousness-substance.
Everything is impermanent. Everything changes. Everything grows. Everything evolves. Nothing is eternally the same. Just think of it! Once you get the idea, you will see boundless hope in this thought; and you will see such horror in the old-fashioned idea of an entity unchanging throughout eternity that it will lead your percipient faculty into wider fields of understanding.
You are essentially quite right. Everything, from gods in their universes to atoms, is impermanent, because all is in change, is in movement, is in growth, in progress. Consider the starry galaxy. Modern Occidental astronomers estimate, roughly of course, that the galaxy or Milky Way is composed of some thirty billion suns, and nobody knows how many solar systems may accompany these suns. All is impermanent because all is changing. In the Eye of Eternity, the entire life-term of the galaxy, of the Milky Way, which seems so permanent to us humans and lasts for such an incomputable number of human years, is but a momentary flash.
The heart of the heart, the core of the core, of every monad, which means every mathematical point throughout infinitude, is that infinitude itself. What a wonderful thought this is! The universe is therefore your boundless home. Hence, you are at home everywhere, for you are compact of all the principles and substances of which the universe is builded. And more, within these substances you are the cosmic life. How small and petty ordinary human affairs seem by contrast! Do you see how these thoughts wash out selfishness, wash out the desire to do evil, and destroy the sense of separate personality? Do you feel the sublimity of them? Do you not see how they clothe the essential man with ineffable dignity!