Studies in Occult Philosophy — G. de Purucker

Questions and Answers  (part 16)

Formation of the Kama-Rupa

Please explain what Mr. Judge means by the statement in the Ocean p. 53, that the astral body, (i.e. linga-sarira) coalesces with the Kama-principle of the departed entity, and that it is this astral body which gives the kama its rupa, so to speak, and forms the kama-rupa?  How is this statement to be understood in the light of the other statement in various places, but notably by you on page 90 of your Occult Glossary, that the linga-sarira fades out pari passu with the physical corpse?

Here I believe there is a confusion in the questioner’s mind.  Mr. Judge on the page of his Ocean of Theosophy referred to, is using the term “astral body” in a rather loose way, and quite in the fashion or style of these earlier days, when a great deal of effort was made to explain our technical Sanskrit words, and when the simplest possible manner of speech was always sought for.  But it is clear, I believe, that what Mr. Judge means by the phrase “astral body” is the linga-sarira, although of course “astral body” could refer to any number of permanent or — temporary vehicles which the ego could use in the astral realms, such as the mayavi-rupa for instance, formed of the higher astral substance and therefore in a certain sense an “astral body,” which can be made visible on the physical plane by the adept.

Now I have often stated, following strictly in the line of H. P. B., that the linga-sarira disintegrates pari passu and almost molecule for molecule with the disintegration of the physical body or sthula-sarira; and this statement is a fact.  But the kama-rupa is formed of astral substance emanating mainly from the auric egg of the individual, originally during its life-time on earth and when freed from the physical corpse forming the kama-rupa after death; and as a large part of the lower or grosser portions of the kama-rupa is formed of astral life-atoms drawn from the decaying or decayed linga-sarira, we thus see that Mr. Judge is quite correct in stating in the general and rather vague way he does, that the dead man’s “astral body” and the principle of passion and desire “leave the physical in company and coalesce.”  Of course it is so — but very soon the kama-rupa frees itself from the linga-sarira with it, because these life-atoms are still strongly attracted to the desire principle in the kama-rupa.

Mr. Judge’s words are strictly correct and accurate.  It is, however, inaccurate to say that it is the “astral body which gives the kama its rupa, and thus forms the kama-rupa.  It is the unexpended vital energy of the man which, attracting astral atoms and life-atoms from the decaying linga-sarira and elsewhere, form a shape or rupa around the center of desire, and thus make the kama-rupa as it appears as a shape after death.  When the ego finally casts off the kama-rupa at the time of the Second Death, then the kama-rupa becomes just an empty shell — as much so as the linga-sarira and the sthula-sarira were at death and very shortly after death of the man on this plane.

To recapitulate: (a) The linga-sarira fades out pari passu with the physical corpse; (b) certain atoms or life-atoms are attracted from the linga-sarira by the desire-principle in addition to other astral atoms drawn from the astral light, and thus coalescing produce the shape or rupa of the kama-rupa; (c) at the Second Death, when the ego begins to enter the devachanic state, the kama-rupa is cast off and thereafter in the case of normal human individuals begins to disintegrate, to go to pieces, molecule for molecule and atom by atom, just as the physical corpse does when buried, or as the linga-sarira does. (d) Of course there are the instances of sorcerers, dugpas, whose gross passions and material desires keep them in the Astral Light and lead them to an immediate or a very quick reimbodiment in a physical body; and other sporadic cases like infants dying young, congenital idiots, and a few more.

The Sevenfold Kama-Rupic Moon

The moon, which is a kama-rupa, has seven globes.  Hence it is a sevenfold entity.  Reasoning analogically, is the kama-rupa of a man a sevenfold entity?

Yes, the kama-rupa of a man is sevenfold; so also is every principle, cosmic, or human.  The moon-chain as a whole is a kama-rupic entity, and every globe of the moon-chain is a kama-rupic entity.  In other words each moon — each globe of the earth-chain having its corresponding moon of the moon-chain — each moon is a kama-rupa to its corresponding earth-chain globe.  The seven kama-rupic globes of the moon-chain are on the four Cosmic Planes on which our earth-chain is.  These planes are named by H. P. B. in The Secret Doctrine , (I, 200) counting from the highest of the four to the lowest, as: (1) Archetypal, (2) Intellectual, (3) Astral formative, (4) Physical material.  The reason why we see the kama-rupa of Globe D of the moon-chain is that our Globe D of our earth-chain is on a sub-plane higher than Globe D of the moon-chain, and similarly all the globes of the earth-chain are each one on a sub-plane of their respective Cosmic Planes higher than the corresponding globes of the moon-chain.  Each one of the principles, as said, whether of a man or a globe, is sevenfold.

Worship of the Inner Divinity

What is the idea behind the portrayal in Egyptian hieroglyphs of the King worshiping or adoring himself?

We have here no self-adoration, as our Occidental Egyptologists wrongly state — no adoration of a person, no kingly individual worshiping himself as the figure-head of a civilized community.  That would be tawdry, paltry.  But we have the case of a man who looked upon himself as representing the divinity within him and as the vicegerent of his inner god on earth, and thereby clothed with spiritual dignity and power, with heavy responsibility in his hands — the guide and shepherd of his people.

The adoration and worship was paid symbolically to that divinity, as it were, like a species of prayer: “Not my will” — that of this feeble man, the King of Egypt — “be done, but thy will be done” — your Father in Heaven.  “Make me a full vessel of thy kingly majesty and power, that I in turn may do my duty to my people, my sheep, my brothers, my children.”  This at least was the original idea, however much it later may have degenerated.  It was a right royal and kingly thing, sublime in its priest-hood — the king-priest, the priest-king, as they existed in the far-distant ages of the past before Atlantis fell.

For during the Third Root-Race when self-consciousness came to men, they worshiped each one his own individual divinity, worshiped it as a bright and starry god to which he aspired: my Self, my god in heaven, my link with the Infinite; just as Jesus the Christ did in reference to his “Father in Heaven.”  And as time passed and the realization, the keen realization, of man’s oneness with the god within vanished, fell, disappeared, men began to worship themselves in the lower sense, the selfish self instead of the divine Self, even worshiped images of the human body which they put in their temples.  Not that they abandoned the old worship, they degraded it, turning the temple of the divine into places where hellions found their home.  The same thought must have been in the mind of the writer of the Christian New Testament where he represents the Avatara as going into the temple and cleaning out the money-changers and the gatherers of taxes.

Let me tell you that every Initiate, every Adept, knows his “Father in Heaven,” recognizes him and calls him “Father-Sun,” or “Father-Flame,” or “Father-Fire,” or “Father-Star,” and looks upon himself, the man himself, not only as an efflux flowing from this inner divinity, but as its child, its representative here on earth, laboring to imbody the mandates and the dictates of the god within.  And the ancient Initiates — and the Kings of Egypt in the days of Egypt’s glory were all such, were all Sons of the Sun — knew it even in those already degenerate days.

When I speak from a public platform and see my audience sitting before me and realize that behind those faces of flesh and those brightly shining eyes there are living gods, I put myself in that frame of mind and address myself — or try to — to that within them which I know will understand with a word.  Oh! if we could only realize, we men and women, the living reality of the god within each one of us, each one with his own “Father-Flame,” “Father-Fire,” “Father-Sun,” “Father-Star”!  This is the Silent Watcher of each of us.  When a man addresses it or aspires to it, he addresses, or aspires to, his own Silent Watcher — that bright and luminous divinity living with patience infinite through the entire solar manvantara, waiting, waiting, waiting, refusing to go on, waiting each one for his child — me, you: the Christ and the Christ-Child: adi-Buddha, Manushya-Buddha; primeval, primordial wisdom, love, compassion — the human representation thereof, the human Buddha.

That is the real meaning of the Egyptian King worshiping himself; and of course degeneration of such things could only take place when a man had fallen from his pristine estate of understanding, in which pristine state intuition was not beclouded by reason because reason had not yet grown up to be pure intellect.  It will in time, but it has not yet so grown.  Any one of you who has once felt the touch of the god within never is the same again.  Never can you be the same again.  Your life is changed; and you can have this awakening at any moment, any moment that you will take it.

The Lamaic Succession in Tibet

Is there any truth to the current idea that the Tashi Lama in Tibet is always a reincarnation of the Buddha?  Is this a real succession, or is it merely a tradition without meaning?

The Succession of the Tibetan Lamaic hierarchy since the time of Tsong-kha-pa in the Fourteenth Century is a real one and takes place through different individual men.  We must remember that the principle regarding this matter is comprised in that deeper Buddhism which really is Esoteric Buddhism — let our Western scholars say what they like.

Neither the Tashi Lama nor the Dalai Lama is a reincarnation or reimbodiment of the Bodhisattva Sakyamuni; but the Succession beginning with Tsong-kha-pa is a transmission of a ‘Ray’ in each individual case of the line of Tashi Lamas derivative from the spiritual Maha-Guru whom H. P. B. calls the Silent Watcher of this Globe.

There is an important distinction to be drawn between successive reincarnations of Gautama and the successive imbodiments of rays from an identic source in the Hierarchy of Compassion which I have just called the Maha-Guru.  It is just here that all Theosophists as well as all esotericists stumble and wander from the facts.

It is indeed a transmission in serial line of a ray from the ‘Buddha’; but the ‘Buddha’ in this case is not the Bodhisattva Gautama, even though he attained Buddhahood, which is a state, but the Dhyani-Buddha of whom the Bodhisattva Gautama himself was an incarnated ray and the noblest and most complete and the fullest since the beginning of our Fifth Root-Race.  This is why the Exalted One, Gautama, later attained Buddhahood.

Even the Tibetans of nearly all classes, with the possible exception of the Tashi and Dalai Lamas themselves, look upon this transmission in Succession or serial line through repetitive imbodiments of the ‘Buddha’ as being repeated incarnations of Gautama the Buddha in the two Head Lamas of the Tibetan Hierarchy.  But this is erroneous; and it is just the point where the stumbling hereinbefore referred to occurs.

The higher members of the Tibetan Hierarchy, including the Khutuktus, and, I sincerely believe, the Tashi Lama himself and in all probability the Dalai Lama, are as perfectly acquainted with the esoteric facts in this case as H. P. B. was; and they know perfectly well that these reincarnations of ‘Living Buddhas,’ as Westerners call them, are not, as said above, repetitive reimbodiments of Sakyamuni, but repeated reimbodiments of identic rays or of an identic ray inspiriting and enlightening one Tashi Lama after the other; and a similar ray in repeated imbodiments inspirits and enlightens one Dalai Lama after the other.  This has been the case since Tsong-kha-pa’s time.  It has been so up to the present and there seems no reasonable doubt that the Succession, as above described, will continue unless and until human vehicles are found which are too imperfect to continue this esoteric line of Succession.

If people only understood the true meaning of the teachings of Tibetan Buddhism regarding the Dhyani-Buddhas and their human representatives on earth, then they would have the key to this continuous mystery of the Succession of living Buddhic rays in the higher members of the Tibetan Hierarchy; and it is just this that H. P. B. spoke of when she wrote as openly as she dared then to do.

To put the matter in other words which will be consistent with facts and accordant with common-sense: Every Tashi Lama from Tsong-kha-pa’s time to the present has been the reimbodiment of an identic Buddhic ray, emanated from the Dhyani-Buddha of this Globe, in other words, the mysterious Individual or Personage, whom Esoteric Tradition states as living in Sambhala, concerning which mysterious land every Tibetan, high or low, has heard somewhat; yet these different Tashi Lamas have been men, seven-principled men, and therefore all have been distinct individuals, each different from his Predecessor and from his Successor, yet each has been the vehicle or channel of transmission of an identic Buddha-Force, which I have hereinbefore called the Ray from the Maha-Guru.

We have then the Succession of an identic spiritual Buddha-Individuality through a long serial line since Tsong-kha-pa’s time of different men who thus become recognized for what they are and who are appointed or raised to the position of Successors in the Hierarchy of the Tashi Lamas.

While this wondrous fact continues in Tibet even to this day, in former ages an identic Succession of true Teachers existed in other parts of the world and has formed the basis for the mysterious stories commonly current in the ancient literatures of Hierarchies of Initiates continued through the ages because of being linked with the Master-Adept whom H. P. B. in Isis Unveiled and elsewhere at times refers to as ‘Maha’ or ‘Maha-Guru.’

No Remission of Sins

What is the meaning of the following quotation from St. John, xx 23?

Whose soever sins ye remit, they are remitted unto them; and whose soever sins ye retain, they are retained.

These words are an ecclesiastical addition to the original theme of the gospel, made by heaven knows whom and heaven knows when.  They have no actual meaning whatever, but simply satisfy the priesthood that they have special God-given powers, and are therefore obviously inserted or originally written by someone with that point of view.  In their open construction they are utterly against the doctrine of Karma — that a man is responsible for his own good deeds and misdeeds.  Sins cannot be remitted by either God, demon, or human.  It is like saying that a man’s character can be remitted.  If you did so you would annihilate the man.

If they have any moral value at all, it is simply the injunction to forgive injury against one, and not to make them worse and carry them on by hatred and revenge.

We should understand that a great many things in the Christian gospels are not holy truth, or the laws of Nature, but the Christian gospels were written by no great initiates, and even after the first writers finished their work, interpolations occurred later on which are now recognized as such even by Christian scholars.  Therefore, one will find many things in the Christian gospels that do not need even pausing over, because they are often half-meaningless interpolations, even sometimes put in the manuscripts by fanatics who happened to have the upper hand: but there is a substratum of actual truth in all the gospels.

Hierarchies within Hierarchies

Not only has every individual his own Inner God, but these Inner Gods collectively form the body corporate through which a superior divinity works.  The superior divinity again in its turn is but one of a still more sublime army or host collected together under a godhead still more sublime; and so on ad infinitum.  Is this a correct conception?

Every individual entity is an expression of a Divine Monad, which is but another phrase for ‘an Inner God.’ Every Monad in its heart of hearts is an individualized divinity; therefore every human being, as well as every other entity, however high or low, is an expression of a Divine Seed which is an Inner God.

This vast cosmic aggregate of Inner Gods or Divine Monads forms the body corporate of a hierarchy, the hierarchy of the Cosmos; and for this hierarchy there is the supreme Hierarch in which all these hosts of Inner Gods are included, much as the body contains all the life-atoms which compose itself.  Such hierarchies being infinite in number in Boundless Space, there are, therefore, logically, an infinite number of cosmic hierarchies.

A further deduction from these premisses is, therefore, that not only is every being, such as a human being, an expression of an individualized divinity called his or its ‘Inner God,’ but all these ‘Inner Gods’ are under the sway of, and living in and forming part of, some superior divinity, which in its turn is but a divinity forming a part of a superior host collectively aggregated within the life-sphere of some divinity still more sublime; and so on ad infinitum.  So that at every step we may use the language of Paul of the Christians in saying that “In It, we live, and move and have our being.”

Theosophical University Press Online Edition