First Edition copyright ©1944; Second Revised Edition copyright ©1984 by Theosophical University Press (print version also available). Electronic version ISBN 1-55700-128-6. All rights reserved. This edition may be downloaded for off-line viewing without charge. No part of this publication may be reproduced for commercial or other use in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording, or otherwise, without permission of Theosophical University Press. For ease of searching, no diacritical marks appear in this electronic version of the text.
"THE WIND OF THE SPIRIT that is blowing over the world, tumultuous, cold and biting as it seems to our sensitive lives, is nevertheless the wind of the spirit" — this is the theme of an address given by Gottfried de Purucker in 1940 and used as the title and opening chapter of the present book. He urges us to penetrate appearances and discern the eternal beyond the temporal, for behind and within the current turmoil there is "power, spiritual power."
In the near-half century since these words were spoken the winds of destiny have been blowing hard, at times with gale force. Certainly not a nation or race, not a single human being, not Mother Earth herself with her families of lives, has been untouched by karmic change. Yet out of the pain and disruption a new worldview and a new and grander vision of humanity's role in the cosmic drama are coming into focus. Despite the prevailing self-seeking in subtle and gross forms, the practice of altruism is on the rise as the counter-impulse toward spirit gains momentum.
During his leadership of the Theosophical Society (1929-1942) Dr. de Purucker lectured constantly on the manifold aspects of theosophy, both in Europe and in the United States, and these addresses form the basis of his larger works. Wind of the Spirit is different. In this seemingly random collection of remarks made spontaneously at public and private gatherings and drawn from letters and notes to students, we rediscover how immensely practical theosophy is. Of course there is teaching aplenty — it could scarcely be otherwise, so profound was his knowledge of the world's spiritual and literary heritage; but it is de Purucker's lucid and direct response to human need that constitutes the book's appeal: always compassionate of human frailty yet ever challenging the nobility within each of us to shine forth. Understandably, when Wind of the Spirit first came out in 1944, within two years of the author's death, it was an instant favorite.
In the present edition the eight formal lectures included in the first edition are omitted as the subject matter is amply treated elsewhere by the author. Outside of this, only minor editing of the text has been done so as to preserve the vitality of the spoken word; and, as an aid to the reader, an index and glossary of philosophical terms, prepared by Ingrid Van Mater, have been added.
Wind of the Spirit concludes with the talk given by Dr. de Purucker a week before he died: "Aham Asmi Parabrahma" — I am Parabrahma, the Boundless. This was the alpha and omega of his teaching mission: to remind us again and again that at the core of every human being, indeed of every atom in the cosmos, is a living divinity. "Think if every man and woman on earth were thoroughly convinced of the utter reality of this cosmic truth! Never again would the hand of man be raised against man. Always it would be the extended hands of succor and brotherhood. For I am my brother — in our inmost we are one."
GRACE F. KNOCHE
June 21, 1984
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