I would like to say a few words about this ‘door’ into the human kingdom. Of course it is not a door. That is just a way of speaking. Thus the door into a profession means graduation of the student. When the animal graduates interiorly, in other words has brought forth from within, the human qualities, it has graduated into the human kingdom; that is its door.
Now, the difference between the beasts, the plants, the stones, the men, the elementals, and the Dhyan-Chohans, the difference as amongst these, or between any two of them, is one not only of potentiality, but of developing ability. Thus the human child is potentially a man or woman, but not yet so, and will not have the adult ability until he is fully grown. The potentiality is there, but the ability lacks. It is not yet brought forth from within. It will come as the child grows. Just so with the beast. The potentiality of humanhood is there, but the beast is not yet human because it has not yet brought forth from within itself human qualities, attributes, power of thought, power of feeling, self respect, all the qualities that make us men men.
Why was there a door into the human kingdom which closed at the bottom point of the present manvantara? It simply means that the animals at that point had not as yet brought forth from within themselves those spiritual, mental attributes, which would enable them to climb up towards the next kingdom, which happens to be the human. They could not make the grade. They did not want to; they did not know anything about it because they were not yet awakened within themselves. The humans did. Consequently there was no door for the humans. They came down the Arc of Descent, passed the critical point, and began to climb up the Arc of Ascent; and we humans shall continue to climb until the end of the Seventh Round.
Here is a very interesting thing to note: There will be a door for us humans at the mid-point of the Fifth Round, and those humans who do not pass through that door, in other words who cannot then and there begin the grade upwards and enter into the lowest dhyan-chohanic kingdom in the Sixth Round, will be by the fact ‘failures,’ and will gradually die out, and will have to wait until the next Planetary imbodiment. But those humans who will make the grade, in other words who will make the upwards choice — when the great moment of upwards choice comes — they will continue to ascend the arc.
How does this all arise? There are ten or even twelve classes of monads. We may describe them thus: the three dhyan-chohanic classes above the human, that is the highest dhyan-chohanic, the intermediate, and the lowest of the dhyan-chohanic; then comes the human, then the beast, then the plant, then the stone, then come the three elemental kingdoms. Thus we have three elemental kingdoms on one hand, three dhyan-chohanic kingdoms on the other, and four intermediate kingdoms, human, beast, plant and stone, making ten distinct classes of monads; which merely means again, monads divisible into these ten classes because the individuals of each class have brought forth the qualities, attributes, in other words the type, attracting such monads to aggregate together in kingdoms or classes.
When any individual, any one of these ten classes, through evolutionary development brings out latent powers, attributes, faculties, within itself, it gradually rises and passes through the door into the next kingdom, graduating from the lower into the higher, and we call that a door. All the individuals congregate together who are like each other. All the X’s are attracted together, all the Y’s, all the Z’s — in other words, to use the old proverb, “Birds of a feather flock together.”
As regards the beasts: they will all show a tendency to die out in this manvantara, and it is a peculiar process which that one statement doesn’t really cover, but it gives you a key. As for instance, all the beasts that were on earth in this Fourth Round will reappear again on this globe earth in the Fifth Round, but will have a shorter time here. In other words, they will come and disappear more quickly; in the Sixth Round still more quickly; whereas in the Seventh Round it is probable that only the very highest of the beasts, the apes and perhaps a few more, will remain. The others will have died out. The reason is they could not “make the grade” in any way. It is my own opinion, subject to correction by those who know vastly more than I do, that probably the next Round, the Fifth, will see almost the last of the great majority of the beasts.
As regards the apes, there is an exceptional case. They are not human, but they are over-shadowed by humanhood. Humanhood is just beginning, as it were, to cast its rays into the ape’s brain. If they can “make the grade,” they will become men of a very low and degenerate type. No, the word is wrongly chosen — of a very low and undeveloped type during the next Round.
These classes are all monads, just as man is a monad. He makes his body to improve as he himself evolves. But when men’s bodies become too gross for them, the bodies die out, the human monads won’t have anything more to do with them, they are cast aside. “These are not fit rupas for us,” they will say, and the bodies will vanish in that way. We shall then bring forth bodies approaching the type of dhyan-chohanic vehicles, that is bodies fit for dhyan-chohanic entities, which we shall have become during the Sixth and Seventh Rounds; and some humans more advanced than others even during the end of the Fifth Round.
So you see, all these ten classes of monads have the same potentialities, but do not rank alike, for they are exactly like human children in different grades in a school, from the little ones up to the graduate young folk leaving the university. The potentialities are the same, but the different degrees of development vary greatly, and it is these differences of evolutionary development which actually are the ten monadic classes.
But I want to remind you once again that even we humans during the next Round shall have an opportunity to enter the open door into the lowest of the three dhyan-chohanic kingdoms; and this open door has been hinted at by H. P. B. and the Masters under the term “the moment of choice,” or the time of choice. It means this: that when we shall have reached the middle point of the Fifth Round, more explicitly, the middle point of the Fourth Root-Race on the Fourth Globe during the Fifth Round, shall we be ready? Shall we have evolved to the point where we see the beyond and desire to go onwards towards it? If we have, we shall then pass through the door of choice. We shall then begin to approach the place that the lowest dhyan-chohanic kingdom now holds, and that kingdom will have gone a step higher. The dhyan-chohanic kingdoms are simply monads who have passed through the human stage, and they are ascending to the god-stage. They will become gods if they are successful. So we shall become Dhyan-Chohans if we “make the grade.”
I will just say this: There is absolutely no time to lose, life is so rapid. We humans learn so slowly, and time is as fleeting in a single incarnation really as it is in a manvantara. There is no time to lose to make up your mind to succeed. And it does not require any abnormal asceticism or martyrdom or anything of the sort. It simply means being more human, so that by continuously becoming more truly human, you become more dhyan-chohanic. It doesn’t mean only intellectual growth. It means moral growth, intellectual growth, psychical growth, but above everything else moral and spiritual growth.
Who are these Dhyan-Chohans we have been speaking of? If you can imagine the very grandest kind of a human being that your loftiest flights of fancy can picturate, you will come somewhere near, perhaps. They are just like we are, thinking, feeling, evolving beings, above us as we are above the beasts. They have their representatives on this earth called sishtas, remainders.
As a matter of fact, and turning for a moment to the subject of Rounds, it is interesting to note that the third dhyan-chohanic kingdom will enter this earth when we as a life-wave shall have gone on to Globe E. They are the higher class coming on the Round behind us, not in evolution, because they are higher than we, but merely so far as serial appearance is concerned; and these Dhyan-Chohans are now evolving on Globe C.
Referring now to our former topic: I have often thought what a world of warning lies in the words of the Master in the Mahatma Letters, “How many millions will perish?” It does not mean that they will be annihilated, it means that they will lose the remainder of this manvantara because they have been malingering before the moment of choice comes, unwilling to see, therefore too weak to go on, too indifferent to climb, lacking in spiritual and intellectual imagination to wish to become stronger and better and finer and nobler. Therefore these will not “make the grade.” The truth is they just don’t want to.
I have been deeply interested in what I have heard here this evening, and I am sure that all present have been equally interested. There is one point which it is very important, I think, to call to your attention. I have often noticed what has seemed to me to be a confusion of ideas as regards the different classes of the Dhyan-Chohans. Some students seem to think that those Dhyan-Chohans which are spoken of as having the ‘creative fire’ are the highest, and they are misled, of course, by the word ‘creative’ in the phrase ‘creative fire.’
As a matter of fact, these Dhyan-Chohans are among the lowest in the Dhyan-Chohanic Hierarchy. The reason of this is obvious. Pure Spirit per se cannot work in matter at all, because pure Spirit is so far above physical being. Spirit is; it does not directly bring forth or govern shape and form in the lower worlds. Between spirit and these lower worlds there are the other classes of the Dhyan-Chohanic Hierarchy which are the links between the two, and which transmit the spiritual energies and powers into the lower world. It is only thus that spirit can act on matter: indirectly by transmission, but not directly upon physical being. It is those entities of the lower degrees which work in the realms of matter which have and use the forces appropriate to those realms of matter; and one of these forces is the astral-physical ‘creative fire.’
The Lunar Pitris, who are one class of the Dhyan-Chohans — one of the four material classes — have this ‘creative fire’; and who are the Lunar Pitris? They are those entities who, when the Lunar Chain had finished its evolution, had not reached the higher Dhyan-Chohanhood, and who, consequently, entered the new chain, the child of the Moon, and who in time became the humanity of that new chain — our Earth planetary chain.
Such are the Lunar Pitris, and remember that they belong to the four lower classes of the Dhyan-Chohanic Hierarchy.
The Agnishvatta-Pitris, on the contrary, are those Dhyan-Chohans which have not the physical ‘creative fire,’ because they belong to a much superior sphere of being; but they have all the fires of the spiritual-intellectual realms. The Agnishvatta-Pitris are they who had, in preceding manvantaras, completed their evolution in the realms of physical matter, and who, when evolution of the lower had brought about the proper time, came to the rescue of those who had only the physical ‘creative fire,’ thus inspiring and enlightening these lower Pitris with spiritual and intellectual energies or ‘fires.’
The Agnishvattas are the spiritual-intellectual parts of us, and therefore are our inner Teachers. The Lunar Pitris, on the other hand, are the incomplete Dhyan-Chohans, incompletely evolved from the spiritual-intellectual standpoint when they left the lunar chain, and who imbodied themselves on our earth; and we as human beings are they — as human beings, I say, which means human feelers, human instinctuals— and who therefore obviously do not pertain to the higher part of our constitution.
Clearly, therefore, they do not occupy a very high rank in the Dhyan-Chohanic Hierarchy.
The Lunar Pitris, in other words, are the part of the human constitution which feels humanly, which feels instinctually, and which possesses the physical brain-mind mentality. The Agnishvatta-Pitris are higher parts of our constitution than these, because the Agnishvatta-Pitris are the elements in our constitution which contain spiritual-intellectual light, therefore ‘fire.’
When this earth’s planetary chain shall have reached the end of its Seventh Round, we, as then having completed the evolutionary course for this planetary chain, will leave this planetary chain as Dhyan-Chohans, Agnishvattas; but the others now trailing along behind us — the present beasts — will be, if I may use the same term as before, the Lunar Pitris of the next planetary chain to come; and this term, future Lunar Pitris, is well chosen, because the present planetary earth-chain will then be the sevenfold moon of that new chain.
I will briefly review what I have said: Those entities having the ‘creative fire’ belong to the four lower classes of the Dhyan-Chohanic Hierarchy; and those which have not the physical ‘creative fire,’ (which means the creative fire of material worlds) are they which are too high for immediate or direct work in physical matter, and therefore have no direct connection at all with these material realms. These latter are the Agnishvattas. They are gods, and they are our Higher Egos. They were, in their turn, Lunar Pitris in a by-gone manvantara. Now they have become Agnishvatta-Pitris.
Thus you see how it is that every class of entities in each new manvantara goes to the next higher step on the Ladder of Evolution.
Here is a question I would like to ask: You have spoken of the different Buddhas. You have referred to — at least you have inferred — the existence in man of different egos. We have heard on other occasions of the Divine Monad, the Spiritual Monad, the Human Monad, the Astral Monad, and the Physical Monad. Now here is my question. Just what, then, is man? How many mans — if I may so coin a plural, I won’t say men, but how many mans — are there in a man? Is each one of these monads an entity by itself, united with the other entities, all together forming man’s constitution; and if so, are there several mans in man, or is it just one single unitary being to which different names — I mean divided into portions to which different names — are given as we pass down the scale? Now that is a question well worth studying, and I would now like to suggest an answer.
It is not a mere figure of speech when we speak of man as having in his constitution different monads. A monad means an indivisible center of life-consciousness-substance, a spiritual ego. Therefore man, in addition to being a stream of consciousness as he is as a constitution, has within him a Divinity, a Buddha or Christ, a Manasaputra, a human being, an astral entity; and he is housed in the human beast — the astral-vital-physical body. All these collectively constitute man’s constitution. Hence I have so often said to you: Remember in all your studies, never forget it, that man is a composite entity, which means an entity formed of other entities, other beings. Therefore did I choose the words in asking my question: How many mans — not men but mans — are there in what we call man? All through any one such constitution there is the sutratman or thread-self from the inmost of the inmost, the core of the core, the heart of the Universe — through all these different monads, from the highest till it touches the physical brain of man. Thus man is both legion and unit. The Silent Watcher in him is the Dhyani-Buddha, an actual, entitative, living ego of divine type. Man is but a copy, a microcosm, of what the solar system is, the Macrocosm. He is no different, he is the same: powers, substances, faculties, essences, everything, only in the minute scale. What you see in the solar system, you should find in mankind. If you want to know what the solar system consists of, study yourself. You simply copy the Great.
Now, then, the human ego which is I, which is any one of you, is one of those particular monads as yet relatively unevolved. Above it there is the Spiritual Monad, and above the latter there is the Divine Monad. For karmic reasons very intricate, difficult to understand but existent, any one of us happens to be a certain stream of consciousness, a sutratman; yet you or I as human individuals are the human monad. I am a human monad, each one of you is; so that, as a human being you are only in the intermediate part of that stream of consciousness which is your constitution, and the upper part of it makes your link with infinity, and the lower part of it enables you to learn on this plane.
Thus you are both one and legion. Thus the divinity in the solar system is both one and an army. We are component parts of that army. The god of the solar system has a life-consciousness-substance, energy, being, which flows through all of us, and is the substantial, conscious background in which we live and move and have our being; and all that particular range of monads or egos which forms any one of us, and forms his stream of consciousness, is spiritually housed in this solar Divinity in whom we live and move and have our being. It is really very simple, and it is so beautiful, because in understanding this seemingly intricate but really very simple thought, you have the key to so many of our deepest doctrines.
Now then, a last thought: Any one of these monads or spiritual egos which form the constitution of a man is evolving — you are, I am, the god within me also, the god within you also, each one on its own plane, each one following its own pathway, and each one in time going a plane higher, and then a plane higher still. When our monad shall have brought out from within itself its latent powers, its unevolved, undeveloped powers, it will become a Spiritual monad, and we shall all be Buddhas, and we shall then work through what is now the animal nature in us, which then will be human. Each monad will have stepped up a degree, and be more highly evolved. Keep this thought in your mind of your utter oneness with the Divinity; and one of the best ways of recognising the utter unity of everyone of us with Infinity, is remembering that we are composite, not by fastening our minds on the fact that we are just an ego different from other egos. Therein is the heresy of separateness. The differences are illusory, yet they exist. Illusory does not mean that they do not exist, it means that it is not the real Real, the realest Real, the fundamental Reality.
Take Father-Sun. We see only his body, and yet his vitality infills the solar system in which the planets are bathed, and all the beings on the planets, and the invisible planets. Then the innumerable armies and multitudes and hosts of life-atoms building my body, your body, the bodies of the earth, the bodies of the sun, the bodies of the gods — each one of these life-atoms is a growing, learning entity, ensouled by a monad, which is likewise a stream of consciousness.
Man is a unit when you take a particular portion of the constitution which is the human ego, which is evolving. It will become a spiritual ego, and afterwards a divine ego; and yet at the same time shot through and through with forces streaming down into him from egos superior to himself, of which he is the child. This is the esoteric basis for the old saying, that at the flame of a candle you can light all the fires of the world, and the flame of the candle is undiminished. Consciousness is just like that. You cannot exhaust it.
Question — May we have more light as to the real meaning of the statement in the Stanzas of Dzyan about Darkness: “Darkness alone filled the boundless all”? Strictly these words mean that naught but Darkness was. Question: What is this Darkness, and what is Light?
E. D. W. — As I understand it, Darkness is the condition of the Universe during Pralaya or before the Dawn; and Light occurs when the Rays from Mahat or Universal Intelligence issue forth into manifestation. Just as a sunbeam shows as light on reaching the Earth-plane, so every ray of the Monadic Essence becomes light on whatever plane of manifestation it imbodies itself.
G. de P. — I do think the point is an extremely important one. I am reminded of the passage in the opening verses of Genesis: “Darkness is upon the surface of the deep.” ‘Darkness’ is the parent of day. That ‘Darkness’ means something more subtil, as well as more essential, that goes deeper into the substance of things. ‘Light’ can only occur, is it not true, when there is manifestation and differentiation — for ‘Light’ is these. When there is differentiation it means contrast of shadows, which is a variety of light. Therefore, ‘Darkness’ means in this connection absolute Spirit, which to our inept and imperfect human intellects is what we may otherwise call Absolute Light; but to our ordinary consciousness it is darkness. I am reminded again of the Pythagorean saying about the Cosmic Monad which withdraws into ‘Darkness’ and ‘Night,’ i.e. into the deep abyss of Cosmic Spirit. I bring out this point because I think it will be helpful to many younger students who may misconstrue these words by taking them at their face-value, imagining that it is something like ordinary night, a night after a day — lack of daylight; but even we know that what we call ‘night’ is simply shot through with radiations of many kinds, one octave of which we humans call light.
O. T. — I venture a suggestion that darkness as it is used in the Stanzas means undirected consciousness, consciousness from which intelligence is withdrawn. We must remember that consciousness is pure light. Consciousness has two aspects: spirit and matter, which are its two poles. The spiritual aspect is the space-aspect, the material aspect is the motion-aspect; but there can be no action until these two are united, and that requires intelligence — and intelligence is asleep, therefore there is darkness.
H. T. E. — I got this idea. You take the analogy of temperature. Temperature is divided into heat and cold, and when we speak of temperature we think of either heat or cold. Now what are light and darkness? They are different aspects — of what?
H. A. W. — It reminds me of the methods of physicists in splitting atoms and studying the electrons and protons and what not by the tracks made by their light in passing over a very sensitive photographic plate. These scientists theorize that matter is concreted electric charges. We are told in our Theosophical studies that light is etherealized matter; or, we may say, matter is concreted light. We find, I think in Fundamentals, the statement that what we see as the sun is not the sun but its photosphere, which is a higher grade of matter which we see as light. Light seems to be matter and matter seems to be light. Even if we say, adopting the modern scientific theory, that matter is electrical charges, nevertheless the corona or light sometimes present around high voltage wires, sparks, lightning, and even the Aurora Borealis or magnetic lights seems to indicate that electricity is the intermediate stage between material and light. It would seem to me then that manifestation can be looked upon as light. Pure spirit therefore can be looked upon as pure darkness. Light seems to be in everything and everywhere, and darkness is the absence of physical manifestation. I believe that this may be the idea behind the statement in the Stanzas.
G. K. — Could we think of darkness as the pralaya of light, or as that unmanifested something which, passing through the laya-center at its appointed time, becomes light?
G. L. D. — We can have no light until we get something to reflect it, and the matter side of things is the reflecting side. When spirit and matter, light and darkness, work together there is differentiation.
O. T. — I think there is a misunderstanding about the relation of light to darkness. We consider them opposites just as most people do life and death; but life and death are not opposites. Birth and death are opposites. Life is nothing but life. Life exists always. Life itself doesn’t go to sleep; and darkness is the absence of that which produces light; and that which produces light is action; and when there is action there are light, heat, and sound, all three at the same time, which are three aspects of action. Light stands in the same relation to action as time does. Light, heat, and sound, physically speaking, are three characteristics appearing as magnitudes in physical nature. Light is not a thing. That is where modern science is so terribly mistaken.
E. D. W. — The Secret Doctrine defines time as a line of consciousness in infinite duration. Perhaps we could equally say that light is a line of consciousness in infinite darkness, because we read in this Stanza of the ‘Awakening,’ that vibration thrills through the darkness. Now vibration in one of its rates gives us light, in another of its rates gives us sound, which is spoken of as the Word, the Logos, and in one of our Scriptures we hear of the Word being made light; and perhaps that might give a clear idea of darkness as eternally existent just as duration is.
A. B. C. — To us as limited beings the only thing that we can comprehend is something else that is manifested, that falls within our particular range of manifestation. Anything that is beyond our range of perception, anything that is beyond the plane of manifestation on which we are, is to us unmanifested. That which is within our perception is light. That which is beyond our perception or comprehension is, to us, darkness. These words used in the Stanzas are largely figurative — used as a means of assisting us to comprehend what is beyond the limitations of our brain-mind. To our intellect that fundamental principle back of the manifested solar system is not comprehensible, hence it is called Darkness. But to our intuition, which rises above intellectual limitations, it is Absolute Light. To the ‘opened eye of the Dangma,’ which means fully illuminated or awakened human intuitive perception, it is Absolute Spiritual Light.
G. de P. — I always feel when I listen to your discussions as though I were learning things; but one thought struck me, Companions, a general background of thought as it were appeared in my mind after listening to this discussion, and it is this: I think there is a misunderstanding possibly amongst us all, of what we mean when we speak of Light. I would call this to your attention with some emphasis. Many people seem to think that Light is illumination, on account of the fact that whenever we turn a knob or press a switch, light springs forth and gives us illumination. Now, illumination is reflected radiation lying within such wave-lengths as our eyes have been evolved to sense. That is only one octave of light, so to speak, or possibly two or three octaves. But that is not Light truly, that is merely illumination brought about by light.
Light is invisible; light per se is darkness. Light is radiation, an energy, a force; and we do not see radiation until it is reflected from things and becomes illumination. Take the light, the radiation, streaming out from the Sun, that glorious sphere. As it passes through space, it illuminates only when its rays strike an object which reflects the radiation; and we call that reflection illumination, or more popularly light. The light of the Sun is invisible, per se. It is darkness. Is that thought clear? It is only when the radiation is reflected from some object that we can see the light as luminosity, and only then when the reflection is vibrational within a certain very small reach along the gamut of radiational vibrations, a very small part; and this is why H. P. B. spoke of Absolute Light, radiation per se, or the substance of radiation, as ‘Darkness.’ They are the same.
For instance, if there were no planets, or planetoids, or meteors, or moons, or comets, or any other reflecting body, in the solar system, and by some wonderful magic a celestial magician could suddenly put some reflecting object in the solar system, anywhere; then a perceiving eye would suddenly see a flash, if indeed that eye were capable of catching the radiations and transmitting them to the perceiving mind, and interpreting them.
We see the light of the sun as luminosity; we see the light of the electric current because it is transmitted to us in a certain way, and strikes objects, and is reflected back to the eye. That is illumination; we see illumination; but light per se is radiation, an energy, a force invisible, a vibration. And consequently illumination stands for matter, because you can only have illumination when there is radiation reflected from thing to thing, differentiation among things.
Therefore the essential meaning of ‘Darkness’ in the Stanzas in the S. D., is homogeneity of substance or essence. Illumination springs forth when there is heterogeneity or differentiation. Illumination dazzles, often is blinding, is deceptive. There are many kinds of light, different shades or grades of light: sunlight and moonlight and star-light, and lamp-light, and the light of the glow-worm, and the light of an electric globe, and fire-light — many kinds of light. But all these kinds are that form of light which we call luminosity or illumination. Radiation per se, which is Absolute Light, is invisible.
Homogeneity of substance, therefore, is of the essential meaning of Darkness in the Stanzas; and it is the same thing as Spirit, following the way in which these Stanzas have been written. Whatever returns to Spirit re-becomes homogeneous, absolute; and whatever issues forth from homogeneity into heterogeneity differentiates and produces luminosity, illumination, reflected light. It is very beautiful because all being is beautiful; it is all the magic work of Spirit, and if we could see the wonderful mystery and marvel behind what the Christians ignorantly allude to as the Christ, we should be in continual awe; but all the same it is the evolved or unfolded spirit-side of the Universe, which is all-permeant, the heterogeneous side, differentiated into many beings and things, which produces ‘Light’ as it is used in mystical writings. Essential Light, therefore, or radiation per se, to use a modern scientific term, is the cause; illumination or reflection or again passage of energy from being or thing to being or thing, is the effects. Consequently, we have a paradox here: Mystical Darkness is Absolute Light; differentiated light or illumination is the shadow or darkness, really, of Absolute Light.
I. D. — In Fundamentals of the Esoteric Philosophy, p. 467, it is stated in regard to our position in the scale of Lokas and Talas that as we are in the Fourth Globe of our Chain we are in the fourth loka and fourth tala, Mahar-loka and Rasatala. “But, again, we are in the fourth round of our planetary chain. Therefore we have this bipolar principle emphasized by the fourth round quality, i.e., mahar-loka and rasatala again. We are, furthermore, in the fifth root-race of the fourth globe on the fourth round. Therefore our root-race, though evolving on that fourth globe and in that fourth round, is represented by the fifth of each column: svar-loka and talatala.” [See Column below] Now I would like to ask: If we are in the Fifth Root-Race, why is it that in the scale of the Races we should be in a lower loka and tala (i.e., Svar-loka and Talatala) rather than the one superior to the Fourth-Round loka and tala; i.e., why are we not in Janar-loka and Sutala?
G. de P. — Lokas and Talas should always be considered as twins, that is to say, one loka should always be considered with its corresponding tala, as for instance, Satya-loka and Atala. These are inseparable and represent the positive and the negative, the high and the low, the spiritual and the material — on any plane; and so on down the scale with increasing increments of unfolding; first, pure spirituality in the arupa-worlds. Now catch this thought: The highest twins, Satya-loka and Atala, represent as so placed a cosmic plane, that is to say each set of twins represents a cosmic plane: from spirit to physical matter. There is the answer to your question.
If you will look at the diagram of the seven globes of our planetary chain as given by H. P. B. in The Secret Doctrine, you will see that Globe D is represented as being in the seventh cosmic plane. That is why we are in Bhur-loka and Patala: on the lowest of the seven manifested cosmic planes. We are, however, in the Fourth Round, on the fourth globe counting by sevens; but in the Fifth Race. Now then, make your adjustments. Just as in the seven principles, so in the cosmic planes: each cosmic plane is sevenfold, tenfold, or twelvefold, according to the way you look at the matter. Satya-loka-Atala is sevenfold, which means that this cosmic plane (plane one on the diagram) has all the other lokas and talas but in the Satya-loka-Atala condition: they are all represented in the highest cosmic plane, held there in seed, not yet unfolded.
Satya-loka - 1 - Atala
Tapar-loka - 2 - Vitala
Janar-loka - 3 - Sutala
Mahar-loka - 4 - Rasatala
Swar-loka - 5 - Talatala
Bhuvar-loka - 6 - Mahatala
Bhur-loka - 7 - Patala
This gives the picture of a universe unfolded, in cosmic planes; otherwise called lokas and talas, two by two — or twins.
Bhur-loka and Patala: this twin is sevenfold also; therefore Bhur-loka-Patala has its subordinate or sub-seven lokas and talas: it is the same all down (or up) the scale. We are in Mahar-loka-Rasatala because we are in the Fourth Round; but in the scale of the Races we are in Svar-loka-Talatala because we are in the Fifth Race.
I. D. — When the Seventh Round is over, by that time shall we have developed the whole possibility of evolution — shall we have unfolded all within us?
G. de P. — We shall have unfolded everything within us and in due order as far as this completed evolution permits. I hope you will get this idea: it will save a great deal of mental work. The highest loka contains its Bhur-loka-Patala because each twin is sevenfold. So this series of double-column worlds represents not only the seven cosmic planes, but the seven degrees of evolutionary unfoldment.
Man is not fully complete until he has unrolled everything within him: in other words, every quality, force, energy, substance, power, attribute that he has locked up. That is the answer to that part of your question. And it is a marvelous study. I don’t blame anyone for being simply mixed up, because it is indeed ‘wheels within wheels,” but yet it is such a wonderful study. The great key is analogical reasoning: hold to that firmly and it will guide you out of the maze.
I might add in conclusion that I would not fasten the attention too rigidly — with too much literalism — upon these lokas and talas as applied to the globes. Emphatically they do apply; but be careful. Now for instance, if you have the picture of the seven globes of a chain as H. P. B. gives them — Globes A, B, C, D, E, F, G and then say Globe A is Satya-loka-Atala, Globe D — the fourth — Mahar-loka-Rasatala, then from this we shall have to say that Bhur-loka-Patala is Globe G. That is not so; for, as a matter of fact, there are twelve globes. I would suggest to you to ponder over this thought for a while as a question to be answered by and by.
Remember first then: seven cosmic planes, in due order, each one unrolled from its preceding one and preceding ones: thus Satya-loka-Atala unrolled from themselves the next and succeeding twins — Tapar-loka-Vitala; and these two unrolled the third twins Janar-loka-Sutala; the three unrolled the next twins — Mahar-Loka-Rasatala: and so on down the seven.
Bhur-loka-Patala has all the qualities of those that went before: it contains them all relatively unrolled, and relatively unfolded, as a flower unfolds from the seed. Thus also does a man through evolution become perfect by bringing out what is within these principles. Complete man, spiritual man, will be living in spiritual Bhur-loka-Patala or Satya-loka-Atala, but as a cosmic plane.
C. J. R. — But the difficulty is that we are in the Fifth Race, and we are more divine; and yet we seem to be farther down than up!
G. de P. — I see where the difficulty comes: you are confusing evolutionary unfoldment per se with cosmic planes per se. Consider these different cosmic planes [indicating diagrams] as the septenary degrees in world-evolution and world-building. They also figurate the septenary degrees in evolutionary unfolding of the entities peregrinating in and through these planes. Yet the two classes of ideas, while interlocked in significance, and interblending in activity, must be kept separate in the mind as distinct things.
Now, particularly with regard to your question: we as a class of peregrinating entities have reached our individual evolutionary stage of unfoldment in what we call the Fifth Root-Race on this Globe D, the fourth according to H. P. B.’s reckoning in our Planetary Chain. Thus it is that we are using this present loka and tala, which we call this aspect of our Earth, but yet we as traveling entities are in our fifth racial stage of unfolding in this particular couple of lokas and talas. Hence, as a racial consciousness, we have attained the fifth in the series, i.e. Svar-loka-Talatala, although the Globe Earth being on the lowest or seventh cosmic plane, is itself a manifestation of Bhur-loka-Patala.
Connected with this last idea we must likewise remember that our Earth itself is only in its fourth stage or Round of development, and thus we have it also manifesting the qualities of the fourth in the above series, to wit, Mahar-loka-Rasatala.
Now all this will be easily explained if you will kindly remember that each of these couples is itself sevenfold, so that for instance, the Bhur-loka-Patala has all the same seven series of couples, from Satya-loka-Atala down to Bhur-loka-Patala in itself.
Thus it is with reference to my remark concerning the stage of the Earth, we have it manifesting Bhur-loka-Patala, because it is in the seventh cosmic plane; yet it is manifesting likewise the Mahar-loka-Rasatala as subordinate planes of the Bhur-loka-Patala.
I will confess that it was with some reluctance that I allowed these thoughts on the lokas and talas to be printed in one or more of my books. It has let me in for a lot of trouble, and I have been explaining ever since! But it has been good, in a way, and therefore I do not really regret it.
I do not know — and yet I am glad to see that the fact I speak of is so — why people are so much interested in knowing what conscience is and where it is located in the human constitution and how you can make it function. We know that while man is a stream of consciousness, he is a septenary stream, and each aspect of the septenate again has its divisions, which is one reason why men differ amongst themselves so greatly and so widely; and it is a pity that this is not better understood. Men would differ more but quarrel less. Quarrels are stupid; kindly “scraps” make firm friends — if they are kindly!
Now, as I understand the matter, our conscience to which we all too infrequently pay heed, to our loss, is that friendly, warm-hearted whispering from above, which we feel as showing us the right and the wrong, and it comes from the stored up ethical wisdom in our being. It is not in the disputatious brain-mind: it is in the heart. It is the highest part of the human ego, the treasury of ethical experience, the accumulated wisdom of past lives, garnered and treasured in our higher parts; and as far as it goes its voice is infallible and powerful; but it does not go far enough to make its voice in our soul an infallible guide, because we have not had past human lives throughout eternity and we are not infinite beings, humanly speaking.
One man’s conscience is strong; another man’s conscience is weaker. Two reasons why: the one may be more evolved and may have learned to hearken more attentively to the inner monitor. Therefore its voice is familiar, strong, and steady, and as we say, warm and sweet. We love that, and one reason why we love it is because it is so personal to ourselves. It is the highest part of each one of us as a human being, whispering to us admonitions of right, and denying to us the ways of wrong-doing. It is the buddhi-manas part of the human being, garnering experience of past ages of births and rebirths, the echo of past sufferings and heartaches from which we have gleaned wisdom and treasured it on the tablets of the Self. That is the conscience.
But higher than conscience is intuition: Intuition is infallible. Its voice is immeasurably infallible, because it is the whispering within us as it were of the truths of the Cosmic Spirit. It is a ray direct from the Divine Spirit in our hearts. Our conscience won’t tell us the truth about a fact of Nature, nor whisper into our minds guidance along the paths of scientific or religious or philosophical discovery, because it is the garnered ethical wisdom familiar to the soul of each one of us. But the intuition will tell us instantly, it has instant vision of truth. Its voice is neither familiar nor unfamiliar. It is utterly impersonal. Its atmosphere is neither “hot” nor “cold.” It is neutral in this respect; and it is the voice of the atma-buddhi-manas within us, the Monad as H. P. B. called it.
Do you get the distinction? The conscience is our own treasury of spiritual-ethical wisdom. It is infallible as far as it goes, as far as we can hear its voice; and we can hear it ever more by practice, by training, by hearkening to it, by just recognising it and following it. But because it is only our own gathered treasury, it is not infinite, and therefore not in the true sense always infallible. But so far as concerns each one of you as individuals, when your conscience whispers to you, follow it, because it will whisper only when you are in danger, or when you are seeking to do aright: whereas the voice of the intuition is the voice of the Spirit within us, and it is infallible. It has no frontiers. It is, so to speak, a ray direct from the Mahabuddhi of the Universe; and we can allow intuition to become ever stronger within us, enlightening our minds and opening our hearts, by not being afraid of it, afraid of having hunches, by not being afraid of following our conscience, and our intuitions when they come to us. They are coming to us all the time.
Most men are ashamed to act intuitively. They don’t want to make mistakes. Prudential, yes! But it is only prudence, and uncommendable, cowardly and weak, and small, if it is merely because you don’t want to begin to make a fool of yourself until you have learned more. The strong man is not afraid of making a fool of himself occasionally, because he knows that that very fact will stimulate him, awaken him, make him think; and after awhile he will not make a fool of himself. He will learn to trust his inner powers. That is the way to cultivate the intuition, by cultivating it; not being afraid of what is within you. Suppose you do make mistakes — what of it? By practice in its exercise the mistakes will grow fewer and fewer.
Make a companion of your conscience. The man or woman who has not heard the voice of conscience whispering in his soul, who has never felt its presence, is not truly human. You know what I mean by that companionship: we call it a voice which whispers to us. It is a light which lives within you always and which tells you what is right — and to follow it; what is wrong — and to abandon it. Make a companion of your conscience, stimulate it, open your hearts and your minds to it. Your lives will be beautified, strengthened, made happier than now they are, because you will be following the voice within which is the accumulated Wisdom of the Ages.
Furthermore, just in proportion as you learn to know your conscience which is your own self, the higher part of you, and trust it and follow it, the more will intuition brighten your lives, bringing you knowledge direct, knowledge infallible.