As one candle-flame will light many others while remaining itself undiminished, so was man's mentality mystically enkindled by our more advanced divine Brothers. Symbolically we can regard the prepared animal-physical vehicle of man as the candle, and this aggregated host of higher Beings as a great Spiritual Flame. Descending to earth, this host of divine Beings who had once been men brought mystically to the waiting vehicles the flame of Divine Mind. The latent faculties of the animal-man were kindled into the first feeble spark of intellect.
— Reincarnation, A Lost Chord in Modern Thought
The Theosophical ForumTHEOSOPHICAL UNIVERSITY PRESS ONLINE