What is this grand majestic sound (1) risen so suddenly in the sweet and tender morning hour?
The first rays of the Sun have touched the Memnon's statue. (2)
The Lords of the Immortal Wisdom came down to dwell in human souls, as far as those were ready.
The lunar beauty of the twilight skies and its selenic image are now flooded with the ubiquitous singing light of the Sun, which breaks the barriers of the night, and takes the moon, the skies, the earth, the waters as so many tints and shining notes of the one joy of Brotherhood Eternal, which awoke with daylight from out the Immortal Regions and brought the warmth of heart, the inner heat of action by the indwelling everlasting Right, the new Ideal ever-present, the beatific glory, which dissolved the lunar sighs and longings into perpetual heart-notes of its song, whose choral strain embraces the whole human kind.
This happened when humanity reached the middle of the Third Race and had gathered enough of power and intensity of aspiration to respond in the terms of consciousness known to it and in synchronous vibrations to the consciousness of the Immortal Egos, so that two might become one.
The Secret Doctrine (3) gives many hints as to the nature of these Celestial Beings. Descriptions it could not give, as no description will avail, because our earthly terms of expression are all pertaining to the world of separateness, of the square divided and subdivided into smaller squares, where no amount of classification will give unity, — not that unity of being included in the large square, but the real conscious inner unity of the higher world, which is symbolized by the triangle. Even when we say that the Divine Hosts and Hierarchies of the Triangle are divided and undivided at the same time — "the undetached sparks" in the One Flame, as the Secret Doctrine expresses it — the phrase should be understood mystically, and not as an objective vision. This great truth is spoken only in symbols, poetical, for mystic natures, and purposely crude for the crowd, which hangs to the literal sense.
Let us then turn our eyes to the great pyramid of Egypt, which was constructed by the Teachers to commemorate the important event of their presence, and even more, of the presence of that Divine Triangle as touching with its lower line the square of earthly life and knowledge. Little can we say, but in our contemplative silence there springs the upward fire and then we can see how the Pyramid reminds one of "the Root that never dies; the Three-tongued Flame of the Four Wicks. The Wicks are the Sparks, that draw from the Three-tongued Flame shot out by the Seven — their Flame — the Beams and Sparks of one Moon reflected in the running Waves of all the Rivers of the Earth." (4)
The fiery Pyramid on the watery base; the Eternal on the passing; Changeless Truth, giving its Rays to the reflections of its Moon, and then withdrawing them back, gathering them into itself, reflections, light and all; — who can understand the mystery, who has it in himself? Perhaps that Sphinx, so deeply meditating in the still vastness of the desert.
The Sphinx has a human face. Surely it will speak. Yet its lips do not move, its eyes do not even look upon us. Set and immovable is its face, as if the light of Eternity, on which it gazes, had enraptured it above all earthly visions. No speech proceeds from its lips, unless that divinely human face is that speech itself, silent, spiritual, merged into the divine, conscious of naught save the harmony of silence, of which all ages speak and cease and speak and cease again. Can we understand this Voice of the Silence? Though it is above all understanding, yet each one of us has a Sphinx-like Inner Face, which, after its outer visage has been cheated by passing joys and torn by illusions and woes, — draws all its light inside, and arisen and immortal, as it feels itself alone, becomes silent and rises above itself. And though we return again into the world, that one grand moment, which is above all moments and outside their revolving sphere, ever remains with us, giving deep hue to the blue skies, a divinely-golden glow and the radiance of the immortal glory of the soul to all unselfish earthly loves, which it gathers into One Love, all sparks and reflections it gathers into another higher Moon, which is now the face of the divine and manvantaric Sphinx, through which we all shall gaze into the Fount itself of all our Unity and Brotherhood, into the mystery sublime of the Eternity's Great Breath.
And yet this Sphinx has not lost itself in that mystery; the Root of its life, wisdom and bliss is there above all play of Maya and above all woe, but its branches and leaves descend from its head to all its body. Not for himself alone has man risen even above himself, but for all nature, of which his body is a symbol. He pours his light from the mysterious selfless heights upon the millions of selves and lives in them. In pure, life-giving streams his light feeds all men and creatures of the earth, — and this is why the Sphinx is often sculptured with a woman's breasts, — a holy symbol of sacrifice. The lion-body of the Sphinx symbolizes the natural forces in man, and all lower selves and their heaving plane of interchange of forces in humankind. (5) They are also the smaller centres of evolution, led upwards, ordered, ruled, helped on their ascending path. The Sphinx's serpent tail (6) emerging from the primeval genetic sea of evolution, from the first boiling chaotic depths, symbolizes those lower and incipient kingdoms of nature which necessarily must follow and depend on the superior kingdoms. This dependence arises from an organic unity, perfectly regulated, and not any occasional interchange. Thus stands this lonely sentinel of the Pralaya of his country. By whom was it reared, by whom understood?
He alone knows what the Great Pyramid is, who is but another expression of that secret himself; his enraptured face and his silence suggest how the questioner must search for the answer. His heterogeneous body is only a symbol of what will happen after the mystery is found. Explaining the different parts of his body will avail nothing. True unity is not on the lower planes of existence.
And yet we have a germ of this true unity in our souls, even in our special and exceptional sub-race of our modern times. What then, it was when the first self-conscious men at the close of the Third Race were as "the towering giants of godly strength and beauty" — when the descent of the Divine Mind from the Celestial Hierarchies produced undreamt- of civilizations, when the higher senses were active and the soul was not buried, as it is now, in a living casket of flesh and bones, where it has got in by long and long thoughts of identification, no matter what led to it, desire, hatred, anger, fear or doubt? No poet has depicted those times satisfactorily yet, and if we wish to read the story, perhaps in children's gleaming eyes we get the flashes of the past, or in some martyr's open gaze, when he renounces his bodily existence and his soul starts off like some great winged bird freed from torture. Poor indeed is the modern age; what avails that so many deeds were done, words said, and thoughts considered, if they entrap the man in their wide and streaming net, instead of leading him, where he really is that which he so much does and speaks and thinks? But in those past ages men knew that they were a million times more than what they can do, say or even think. Their souls were as self-luminous, limpid lakes of inner truth and inner bliss, which at every touch they were too glad to distribute to those who needed, and to give them part of their life, their blood (in the sense spoken of by Jesus), their joy and thus live in them, without losing themselves in the least. And indeed as they were in others, others were in them, whether it was a day, or a glorious night, when all the stars came upon the skies and none was lacking. The soul-presence was not limited by a thought, it was not limited even by a myriad of thoughts and systems, passing and flickering as they were, when they floated, like clouds light or dense, in the soul's bright sky. It was best and clearest, when there were no such clouds in soul's bright shrine, for the real immortal soul of man is the presence of All-thought of the whole present great cycle of a monad and embraces past, present and future within the cycle's limits all at once. It is comparatively omniscient and omnipotent on its own plane, and it cannot contact a limited personality, but through mind. Now Mind, doing so, can take rightly all objects as shadows of the soul ideally as parts of itself, externalized only for a time and desirous to return, or it can in its blindness seek to identify the soul with the objects and run after them. Therefore mind is called higher or lower. With the help of the higher mind, the soul even on this plane sees nothing but its eternal essence, which is knowledge. All things for it appear from the standpoint of ideas. They are its ideas, its joy, its love, its sorrow. It is its self-assertion of hardness, which stones manifest in their inertia of velocity of revolving atoms; it is its sunny fragrance in the small lives of plants, its shadow forms and reflected fires in animals. "It is my sphinx-like shape in my brother men," says the soul, my objects of perception and my essence of knowledge, the earth and skies and myself are there.
"All this is mine; aye, all this is 'I,' for without seeing this I could not see myself; I should be blank and void and my heart would be cold if I had none to love, my knowledge would be dark, if I had none to know, my immortality would be lost, if I had no immortal friends; greeting to you, my brother men, ye imperishable stars enlightening my lonely star, and revealing to me this grand eternal flaming space, which without you would not be more than naught. If it is destined to me to become one with it, it is because there is a hope, that I shall be one with you and one with all. Infinity of Life in the final consummation of Brotherhood Eternal and the mystery which is in its inner depth." Thus speaks the human soul to the host of stars, reflecting them in its sweet, placid, shoreless waters, full of the bliss of contemplation, that if there is a reflection of the All, there must be the real All, and the great day: "BE WITH US" must come at last.
(To be continued.)
1. Sound corresponds in Indian philosophy to Akasha, through which act the forces of Angelic Mind, which is different from mortal mind of men, and superior to it, just as sound is superior to other senses, being more within, perfectly void of opacity, ubiquitous, each note being complementary to another and founded on the Unity expressed in the keynote. (return to text)
2. The colossal statue of Memnori in Egypt greeted the sunrise with a melodious strain, produced by vibrations of molecules of the stone in the first rays of the solar heat. (return to text)
3. By H. P. Blavatsky. (return to text)
4. S, D. I. p. 65, third ed. (return to text)
5. According as we take the narrower or wider meaning of the Sphinx. (return to text)
6. On some sculptures. (return to text)
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