Vol. 68 No. 6 Toronto, Jan.-Feb. 1988
The Theosophical Society is not responsible for any statement in this Magazine, unless made in an official document.
RING OUT, WILD BELLS
Ring out, wild bells, to the wild sky,
The flying cloud, the frosty light:
The year is dying in the night;
Ring out, wild bells, and let him die.
Ring out the old, ring in the new,
Ring, happy bells, across the snow:
The year is going, let him go;
Ring out the false, ring in the true.
Ring out the grief that saps the mind,
For those that here we see no more;
Ring out the feud of rich and poor,
Ring in redress to all mankind.
Ring out a slowly dying cause,
And ancient forms of party strife;
Ring in the nobler modes of life,
With sweeter manners, purer laws.
Ring out the want, the care, the sin,
The faithless coldness of the times;
Ring out, ring out thy mournful rhymes,
But ring the fuller minstrel in.
Ring out false pride in place and blood,
The civic slander and the spite;
Ring in the love of truth and right,
Ring in the common love of good.
Ring out old shapes of foul disease;
Ring out the narrowing lust of gold;
Ring out the thousand wars of old,
Ring in the thousand years of peace.
Ring in the valiant man and free,
The larger heart, the kindlier hand;
Ring out the darkness of the land,
Ring in the Christ that is to be.
THE QUEST FOR THE HOLY GRAIL
- Joan Sutcliffe
(Concluded from page 101)
Earlier it was said that the search for the Holy Grail symbolizes the search for the knowledge of how to become aware of the Inner Self. What, then, is the Grail? In the legends the description is vague and veiled in mystery. Sometimes it is an ever-filled cup; sometimes a dish serving whatever food each desires. Only in the Christian version is it given a definite form, that of the chalice of the Last Supper. With Wolfram von Eschenbach, it appears as a stone flashing cryptic messages which then disappear. However, one feels that the outward object is only a focus on this plane of matter for the living spiritual power behind it.
In one sense the outer form of the Grail is the mystery teaching by which the Soul frees itself from the lower self and becomes fully conscious of itself as the Inner Man, the focus and container of the spiritual powers.
In a deeper vein, the Grail is the link with the Teachers of that Wisdom, the Nirmanakayas who form the "guardian wall" mentioned in The Voice of the Silence as protecting mankind from greater evils. Titurel symbolizes this noble body of great Souls. Titurel's race represents a wonderful period in the early history of the races, when men were ruled by initiated kings and taught the arts and sciences by semi-divine instructors. A finer race, called the "Children of the Fire Mist" in The Secret Doctrine, mingled with the young humanity of that period, newly developing the mental faculty, and left their example and inspiration.
The story of Amfortas is almost an allegory of the struggle between Higher and Lower Manas. Mind is a two-edged sword. Higher mind, illuminated by the radiation of the divine Spirit, is that which makes the fully self-conscious Ego, the higher evolving being. Too often, however, the lower mind falls completely under the will of the desire nature, and becomes merely the image maker for the desires, thus strengthening the intensity of them, and actually creating an entity, called in Theosophy the Kama-Manas. This Kama-Manas is the personal man, and what we accept for the most part as the self. It is what we identify our consciousness with when we think "I am I". This is the state of our present human race in general; and the infliction [[affliction?]] of the Grail king represents this sad state.
Amfortas, however, has kept the link with the Grail, just as we still have the link with the Higher Manas, and that link is what we speak of as the Inner Man - the part of our lower mind that is not entirely consumed by the desire nature, the part of us which responds to higher aspirations. It is this Inner Man to whom are addressed the instructions of The Voice of the Silence and Light on the Path. In one sense, therefore, the quest for the Holy Grail is the struggle to develop this Inner Man; in another sense the Inner Man is the knight in his idealized form.
In Parsifal we see the emergence of this awakening Soul in condensed form. His mother symbolizes the feminine aspect of cosmic manifestation, usually termed in Sanskrit, prakriti, matter. Therefore, in Parsifal's early childhood life of innocence in the woodlands, dominated only by his mother, we see depicted allegorically the birth of the spiritual Monad into matter; and the total
identification of the conscious ego with its earthly existence, in complete ignorance of its divine parentage. When Parsifal has entered the Grail castle the second time and understood the sacred meaning of the Grail, he discovers his lineage is from the Grail king. Similarly, in The Secret Doctrine H.P. Blavatsky tells us that at the final initiation the disciple discovers his own Father-Soul, the Dhyani Buddha whose ray he is.
The beginning of the awakening of the Inner Man occurs when Parsifal first learns of the Quest for the Holy Grail from the knights in the forest. Here is the glorious moment when the sacred wisdom first makes contact with the Silent Watcher within, and stirs it to active life. It may be a faltering response at first, with recurring failures, but the awakening has occurred. This inner consciousness may be touched by the study of esoteric philosophy; or from the company of a holy person; or meditation; or enlightened living. It is symbolized in the Egyptian teachings by Anubis, guardian of the hidden Mysteries, calling forth the Soul of the deceased. The personal man with his excitable vibrations must be stilled and bound like the mummy, before the inner promptings may be perceived.
After the initial wonderful period of discovery of a new plane of consciousness, of a deeper and more penetrating Self, and a whole fascinating field of metaphysical teaching based on finer laws of morality, the downtrodden personal man will break free of his bonds and react with violent outburst. This often bowls over the new aspirant, temporarily annihilating the Inner Man. It is the beginning of the Quest for the Grail, the beginning of the struggle with the lower self, the beginning of the adventures which each knight goes through.
The quest of each knight is the quest of each of us. The Holy Grail lies within oneself, and the quest for it is man's struggle with his self, i.e., his lower self. By his own efforts he must win. The adventures of the knights represent man's spiritual growth through failure and success. Man has within himself all that he needs for the ordeal.
We come again to the dual forces. The opposite force of the desire nature is the Will, and Occultism teaches that the Will is the magician's tool. It is by the concentrated Will that the Adepts hold the image that produces the phenomena of precipitated writing. However, the Will needs the direction of the Higher Mind, and this is why the ideals of knighthood were so important. Clingschor had also developed a very powerful Will, by means of which he turned himself into an evil magician. As Alice Leighton Cleather points out, however, in Parsifal we see the Will motivated by Compassion, and what a tremendously good ennobling power it had. Compassion is a quality of Buddhi, which is part of the divine spiritual Soul, and which is higher and deeper than the Inner Man we mention. Whereas all the other knights fell prey to the enticing magic of Clingschor, Parsifal kept his purity. Because he was so filled with compassion for the sick king, he had no vision for any side issues.
The ideals of chivalry upon which the orders of knighthood were founded are actually very mystical if we think of them in the symbolic sense. Isabel Cooper-Oakley tells us that these were given to us by the Arabs, and lists them as: "goodness, valour, courtesy, poetry, elegance of speech, strength, horsemanship, skill in the use of lance, sword and bow."
The sword, for example, is always associated in mystical literature with the Will. This essential tool is important, for the wild and chaotic forest into which the knight plunges
in his search for the Grail castle represents the chaotic state of his own psychological nature. This of course is what every candidate to the Mysteries must face. The wild beasts and subtle traps depicted in the Egyptian Amenti, and the tortuous visions of the Orphic Mysteries are the thought forms man has allowed to permeate his psychic nature. They remain there until they are driven out by non-identification. This is why in the Egyptian Mysteries the disciple must identify himself with the god, Osiris. Similarly, in our daily life, we undergo minor initiations from time to time, and the purpose of daily meditation is to learn to draw out and identify with the spark of the Divine source in us, and gradually to recede into the background the phenomenal world of the senses, and develop our own deeper powers.
In the celebration of the Eleusinian Mysteries the candidate first had to undergo preliminary training of purification. He then became one of the Mystae (the veiled), which meant that he was veiled against the exterior world of sensual impressions. He was no longer led astray by his own personal nature, and was able to pass through the initiatory rites without fear of his own lower nature. The ceremony of the Mystery enactment culminated in the Epoptea, which was the seeing of certain sacred objects; after which the candidate intuitively understood the secret meaning of the rites, and had knowledge of cosmic laws. He had become a seer. This enlightened state lasted for three days.
There seems to be a parallel here with the knight's vision of the Holy Grail. The Quest of the Grail is the attainment of a higher state of consciousness.
Similarly, if we take the quality of horsemanship: exoterically we see the importance of skillful mastering of the horse, as in the old days this was the knight's sole means of transport. However, esoterically there is a deeper meaning to the horse. In occult literature the horse has long been a symbol of man's lower nature. The Kathopanisad teaches: "Know the Self as the lord of the chariot, the body as only the car; know also the reason as driver, the reins as the impulses too. The senses they say are the horses, the objects for them are the roads; Self, senses and impulse united, the taster the wise ones have named."
The senses are our means of taking in the experiences that each incarnation offers. But the horses may run wild, and often do, unless restrained and guided by the reins of lower Manas firmly responding to higher Manas as driver: all blessed by the ray of the Divine Self.
In Astrology the sign of Sagittarius depicts the man astride the horse, aiming his arrows towards the stars. The man here is the awakening Soul, not the personality, which is the horse serving its right purpose as the vehicle for the inner disciple. The arrows are the upward strivings of the Inner Man to meditate on the divine spiritual ray within him.
"Fix thy Soul's gaze on the star whose ray thou art," teaches The Voice of the Silence. These arrows, too, are the ennobling thoughts and more spiritual endeavours of a lifetime, by means of which the Antaskarana is built - which is the link between the lower and the higher Manas. Who is the builder? He is the archer, i.e., the knight. Coincidentally, dexterity in the use of the bow was given as another of the qualities essential to knighthood.
The bow is the base from which the arrows are sprung, and to be effective it has to be both strong and pliable. The old Indians of North America used to select wood from the willow tree for making their bows, because of
the willow's property of durability and its easy capacity to bend smoothly in harmony with an exerted force. In one sense the bow is like the philosophy and moral teaching that serves as the root base for our actions and reactions in our path of life. With some it may be religious belief that stimulates the arrows of response; with others, scientific knowledge. And with a great many of us, it is too often pure self-interest.
The occult teachings given us by H.P.B. and her Masters is the ideal foundation from which the aspiring pupil may direct his thinking and his movements. It has all the firmness and stability of the finest bow, with the wonderful quality of suppleness in the user's hand, for it is a living body of knowledge accumulated from the living experience of countless initiates, tried and tested all along the way. It will give him all he needs to break through illusionary veil after veil until he becomes the actor for his highest Self.
We must remember, however, that the most sublime truth of the One Reality cannot be expressed in language cognizable by the finite mentality, and therefore our understanding of occult knowledge is always relative to the stage of intuitive development we have reached at the time. While the One Truth is ever stable and unchangeable, our interpretation of it must be free flowing and bendable like the willow. Sometimes, when we become too fixed upon one line of thinking, it then takes the intervention of Karma to bring up some seemingly unprecedented incident to shake us in our fixity. It often bowls us over completely and tears at the roots of our most sacred convictions. These aggravating and tormenting experiences may upset our balance for a while, and we may curse them angrily and fight them to the utmost; but they are our mentors. They show us the illusionary value of beliefs formed with the intellectual faculty; and they may leave us floundering hopelessly without a base for a while, but they are necessary to the process of our inner maturing. Ingratitude is a weakness despised by the Masters, and when the initial indignation has passed, we should bless our mentors for being the means of our growth. They are the adversaries that the knights meet in combat, and it was an important rule of chivalry that the knight should minister to the wounds of his defeated enemies.
Respect and gratitude for the help of others along the way is perhaps part of the virtue of humbleness so urgently requested of the neophyte in occultism. From the occult viewpoint the teaching of non-separateness runs deeper than is apparent on the surface; and Karma interweaves its immensely subtle threads intricately, interconnecting being and being, within Being; and cycle and cycle, within Cycle. Our dim vision only reveals to us a small portion of life at a time. How can we then know our responsibility from numerous past incarnations? Perhaps this is demonstrated in Parsifal when his mother dies of grief at his parting. Even though he is unaware of this fact at the time, and his leaving home for the Quest for the Grail is obviously his spiritually appointed Dharma, his mother's death is a stain on his character which karmically dogs him throughout the Quest, and is even given as the reason of his first failure.
As already established, the Quest of the Holy Grail is the building of the Antaskarana.
It is built from the highest ideals and most spiritual acts of the incarnation, from the loving and compassionate work for humanity, from the achievements of meditation, from the stern decisions to put aside personal yearnings in favour of altruistic beneficences. And who is the builder theosophically? He is the aspiring part of lower Manas that is not dominated by the Desire nature, but who is working as the conscious agent of the Father in heaven. This is the creating of the new Self-conscious continuing Ego.
Isabel Cooper-Oakley writes about it occultly:
"The vesture of the Self in its perfect glory is of a purity of transcendent perfection. No mortal stained with earthly passion can gaze upon that garment of the soul.
"And as the upward striving soul struggles to free itself from the bondage of the lower bodies and their subtle forces, and as it purifies one vehicle after another pertaining to the three lower planes of matter, finally it reaches that step on the Path whereof the substance is perfect purity, and the soul perceives that 'Light vesture' which is the garment - spoken of in Theosophic terms as the Buddhic body - veiling the divine mysterious Self.
"This is the great reality which is typified by the Holy Grail, the symbolic Cup or Chalice, the first container of the Holy Life of the Logos."
- Masonry and Medieval Mysticism, p. 191.
THE THEOSOPHICAL SOCIETY
The Theosophical Society is not intended for weak-minded people, but for people who can believe in and practise Universal Brotherhood. It takes a mind of some development to grasp the idea of brotherhood, and to accept the sinner (minus his sin) equally with the saint. Churches, creeds, dogmas, opinions, views, beliefs, race, caste, colour, sex, previous condition of servitude, hostility, enmity, black magicians and white, immature or advanced, lofty or lowly, all alike are part of the infinite Unity. Weaker brethren cannot grasp such an outlook. They want a brotherhood of those like minded with themselves, a survival of "orthodox'' ideals. But to love their enemies, to do good to those that hate them, to bless those that curse them, and to pray for those that despitefully use them is only given to those who are strong in the love of the Master, and know that in Him there is neither Jew nor Greek, neither male nor female, neither bond nor free. Hence it is that the Theosophical Society sets up the highest ideal upon earth today. It favours no personality, no sect, no clique. These come and go, but the great world movement, like a wave of the sea, rolls on through the centuries, bearing the wise ones on its crest, while those who fail fall into the trough to wait the coming of the next mighty tide.
- Albert E.S. Smythe
- The Canadian Theosophist, December, 1921
SECRET DOCTRINE QUESTION AND ANSWER SECTION
From 1964 to 1980, Geoffrey Barborka's "Secret Doctrine Question and Answer Section" was a regular and popular feature of this magazine, and there was widespread disappointment among the readers when he was no longer able to conduct it. There have been several suggestions that the series be published in book form, and many more requests than could be filled for back issues containing early instalments. To partially respond to this interest, we shall be reprinting selections from the "Q and A Section". To make the re-issue even more useful, the material has been compiled under subject headings. The originals are identified by Volume and number at the end of each answer. - Eds.
8. THE AFTER-DEATH STATES: - PART III
Question. Do we lose our identity when we die?
Answer. Here is a question which would be asked by a person attending a Theosophical lecture for the first time and the lecturer most likely referred to Reincarnation. To answer such an inquirer would not be easy simply because the answerer would have to inquire what was meant by "we." Is the physical body meant? Or is it the personality? The following passage covers the subject very well:
"The human soul (lower Manas) is the only and direct mediator between the personality and the divine Ego. That which goes to make up on this earth the personality (miscalled by us individuality) is the sum of all its mental, physical and spiritual characteristic traits, which, being impressed on the human soul, produces the man. Now, of all these characteristics it is the purified ideations alone which can be impressed on the higher immortal Ego. This is done by the "human soul" merging again, in its essence, into its parent source, commingling with its divine Ego during life, and reuniting itself entirely with it after the death of the physical man. Therefore unless Kama-Manas transmits to Buddhi-Manas such personal ideations, and such consciousness of its "I" as can be assimilated by the divine EGO, nothing of that "I" or personality can survive in the Eternal. Only that which is worthy of the immortal God within us, and identical in its nature with the divine quintessence, can survive; for in this case it is its own, the divine Ego's "shadows" or emanations which ascend to it and are indrawn by it into itself again, to become once more part of its own Essence. No noble thought, no grand aspiration, desire, or divine immortal love, can come into the brain of the man of clay and settle there, except as a direct emanation from the higher to, and through, the lower Ego; all the rest, intellectual as it may seem, proceeds from the "shadow," the lower mind, in its association and commingling with Kama, and passes away and disappears forever. But the mental and spiritual ideations of the personal "I" return to it, as parts of the Ego's essence, and can never fade
out. Thus of the personality that was, only its spiritual experiences, the memory of all that is good and noble, with the consciousness of its "I" blended with that of all the other personal "I's" that preceded it - survive and become immortal. There is no distinct or separate immortality for the men of earth outside of the EGO which informed them. That Higher Ego is the sole Bearer of all its alter Egos on earth and their sole representative in the mental state called Devachan. As the last disembodied personality, however, has a right to its own special state of bliss, unalloyed and free from the memories of all others, it is the last life only which is fully realistically vivid. Devachan is often compared to the happiest days in a series of many thousands of other 'days' in the life of a person. The intensity of its happiness makes the man forget entirely all others, his past becomes obliterated. This is what we call the Devachanic State ... " (H.P. Blavatsky Collected Writings XII, 626-7; S.D. V, 490-1 6-vol. ed.; III, 515 3rd ed.) - Vol. 53, No. 4
Question. Do we actually meet our loved ones in the "heaven world"?
Answer. Not in their physical bodies, just as we do not physically meet our loved ones in our dreams; although at times our loved ones appear to be more lovely and more "real" while dreaming than what we see in the physical world. Devachan is a state of consciousness, a blissful state, in which no sorrow enters to mar the picturization. There is a passage in The Mahatma Letters to A.P. Sinnett describing the after-death state:
"There are great varieties in the Devachan states ... as many varieties of bliss, as on earth there are shades of perception and of capability to appreciate such reward. It is an ideated paradise, in each case of the Ego's own making, and by him filled with the scenery, crowded with the incidents, and thronged with the people he would expect to find in such a sphere of compensative bliss." (p. 102; p. 100 3rd ed.)
"A mother from a savage tribe is not less happy than a mother from a regal palace, with her lost child in her arms; and although as actual Egos, children prematurely dying before the perfection of their septenary Entity do not find their way to Devachan, yet all the same the mother's loving fancy finds her children there, without once missing that her heart yearns for. Say - it is but a dream, but after all what is objective life itself but a panorama of vivid unrealities?" (p. 103; p. 100 3rd ed.) - Vol 54, No. 4
Question. To what extent, if any can the recently deceased discern or know anything of previous incarnations?
Answer. In the passage above quoted from The Secret Doctrine, the reason was given why only the life just lived remains vividly in the memory of the deceased. However, it depends upon the degree of evolutionary development attained by the deceased as to whether more than one life will be "visioned." To quote:
"Very good and holy men see, we are taught, not only the life they are leaving, but even several preceding lives in which were produced the causes that made them what they were in the life just closing. They recognise the law of Karma in all its majesty and justice." (The Key to Theosophy, p. 162)
Question. How long a time is there between incarnations on earth?
Answer. It all depends upon how a life on earth is lived. The importance of the daily life is the significant factor, as well as the "thought-life." To illustrate the point, a materialist will return to life on earth much faster than will a philosopher. Then, too, it will depend upon the length of life on earth. Those who die in childhood return to earthlife quickly. Mr. Sinnett asked the Mahatma in regard to the length of the interlude between lives in this matter. "And for how long? Does the state of spiritual beatitude endure for years? for decades? for centuries?" And the answer was given:
"For years, decades, centuries and millenniums. Oftentimes multiplied by something more. It all depends upon the duration of Karma. Fill with oil Den's little cup, and a city Reservoir of water, and lighting both see which burns the longer. The Ego is the wick and Karma the oil: the difference in the quantity of the latter (in the cup and the reservoir) suggesting to you the greatest difference in the duration of various Karmas. Every effect must be proportionate to the cause. And, as man's terms of incarnate existence bear but a small proportion to his periods of internatal existence in the manvantaric cycle, so the good thoughts, words, and deeds, of any one of these 'lives' on a globe are causative of effects, the working out of which requires far more time than the evolution of the causes occupied." (The Mahatma Letters to A.P. Sinnett, p. 106; 103-4 3rd ed.) - Vol. 53, No. 4
INDEPENDENT SPIRITUAL LIFE
"The Highest Form of Human Consciousness"
- William R. Laudahn
Strong souls, perhaps "old souls" who have been around a long time, seeing, experiencing and considering much, cherish the Spirit of Independence. They observe, however, only a few of like mind. Most are all too willing to forfeit freedom and be taken by the hand, led by glowing promises to who knows where and what. Hoping for the best, light hearts and heads march off in all directions.
Going against this mighty tide, some are willing and able to stand alone with a special inspiration. Here is the ancient birth and rebirth of Divine Wisdom, Theosophia, in human hearts and minds. Then, in the words of H.P. Blavatsky, they may "exalt their minds by the research and contemplation of ... Absolute Truth ..." in "one full and harmonious melody..." (1) Having then arrived at a fair vantage point - sometimes the hard way - they may relax temporarily, beholding the view from Eternity.
Looking around, others, brothers and sisters in freedom are seen, near or distantly. The Independent Truth-seekers may call one to another, some are recognized. The realization is spiritual, with no visible signs or passwords. Nor do they necessarily honour and obey exalted Leaders, granting that some, at least, are worthy of honour. Many
flocks are quietly left in the tender care of their numerous shepherds. Rigorous religious institutions and organizations are hardly prepared for the "free search for Truth," in the area of symbolic religious philosophy that Clement of Alexandria preached and occasionally practised.
Church, temple, mosque or synagogue seldom play a role in this drama, they mostly preach dogma. Independent seekers impatiently sweep mental-emotional webs aside, intoxicated only with God. Their exaltation arose with the spiritual Sun in the mystic East, with its pantheistic religious philosophies and esoteric theosophies.
Forerunners generally recognized in the West are Ammonius Saccas and his famed pupil Plotinus, founder of the "Eclectic Theosophical System," academically known as the Neo-Platonic school of Philosophy. This teaching greatly influenced Gnosticism, the Kabbalah, the Sufis, and some of the early Fathers of the Church, such as St. Augustine and Origen. Others in this line are Spinoza, Meister Eckhart and Boehme - the list goes on and on. A special inner strength stands all of them in good stead, for they are more often than not open to "the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune."
At awful times, the slings were of fire and brimstone, reserved for heretics and blasphemers, who perished by the thousands. While unaware of or ignoring all the sordid facts, not a few martyrs remained, in their own minds, well within the Fold of the Faith. The literal Creed made statements which were interpreted too broadly to suit the religious hierarchy. The free spirits, as was their wont, blithely overlooked this cruel fact. With the greatest goal in the world, they had to steel themselves. Wide vistas are the very stuff of theosophy.
Fortified and inspired by the All-One of Plotinus and mystical symbolism, sojourners in Truth aspire to be "alone with the Alone." Distinctions are set aside, as when God, or the Absolute-Freedom and Unity itself - is labeled "the Wholly Other." Martin Buber, theologian, amplified this when he noted that It is "also at the same time... the Wholly Near, the intimate." (2)
Crass preachments for the "Personal God, Father, Son, and Saviour" somehow show a degree of longing for Divine intimacy and individual uniqueness. Aside from radical "Otherness" applied to God, there is a hunger for Meaning deep in the personal interior. This amounts to spirituality within and beyond Personality. Usually not articulated well in common Faith, shallow words and surface emotions often dispose of the subject.
Where Faith stops, Truth begins. The magic-mystic Point and Source dividing and uniting Far and Near provides the food and drink of Symbolic Theosophy. Here is sustenance and Freedom. The heavenly fruit and brew of contemplation reveals several great perspectives.
God's alleged "Personality" and "Otherness" is not so much a noble perspective as, at best, a product of the creative imagination. Especially does it result from the misuse of the lower mind and lesser self - of which it is the image.
Lordly Personality, sermonized on the Sabbath, inhibits and stifles spiritual independence. In the freedom of theosophical Truth, the Higher Mind and Self advances to know Itself, the Inner God. The interrelationship enhances all. We go from the Person and other connections to the Absoluteness. In "creation," evolution and (Continued on page 140)
NOTES AND COMMENTS BY THE GENERAL SECRETARY
I have pleasure in welcoming into the fellowship of the Society Mrs. Eila H. Itkonen, of Burnaby, B.C. She joined through the Kalevala Study Centre.
At the Board of Directors Meeting held in Toronto on September 12, 1987, just ahead of the Annual General Meeting, your Board approved an increase in rates for membership dues to the Canadian Section of The Theosophical Society, as well as an increase in the subscription for this magazine, and an increase in the price of an individual copy.
The new membership dues amount to $14.00 per year, effective October, 1987, for new members, and June 30,1988 for renewal. This is the amount payable to the Section. Lodge dues, if any, are payable in addition to this amount. All Lodge Presidents and Treasurers, and the heads of Study Centres have already been notified of this increase and have been provided with the monthly pro-rata schedule of dues payable by new members.
The Canadian Theosophist magazine subscription is now $9.00 (Canadian) per year, or $1.50 a single copy.
There was some discussion with the Directors, commencing early in 1987, as to the advisability of an increase. All Directors agreed on an increase, and there were suggestions for it to be as high as $35.00. The amount settled is approximately the breakeven amount, perhaps just slightly subsidizing.
There has not been an increase for some time, yet costs slowly rise, as you have noticed, in all things. The magazine was, in 1987, costing us just over $9.00 to send the year's six issues to a Canadian member or subscriber, and more for offshore. Yet the amount we received was only $4.50. The actual cost varies a bit with each issue, depending on how much courier charges there are for sending proofs back and forth between editors and printer. Or shall we say the cost of each printing varies directly as the error rate in the proofs via courier charges.
As to the membership dues charged, by the method used before September 12, 1987, of the $7.50 dues - which included the magazine subscription - we actually netted only $1.87, after the fee applicable to Adyar was deducted. This amount covered only the cost of sending the usual and obligatory mailings to each member, viz., the notice of the Annual Meeting, and the membership card. Anything else, and our office expenses came out of donations (very few, but gratefully received) and investment income. A new member joining at any time except the first two months of our fiscal year was subsidized even in mailing to him/her the membership card.
These increases may seem as a jolt if computed from a percentage point of view, but are rather small from an actual dollar increase viewpoint. We have been subsidizing for years. Or, looking at it from another angle, perhaps we have even been bribing by paying so much of the cost ourselves from other revenues. It is hoped that our members and subscribers will stay with us and not object to paying the full cost, until the costs start increasing - like the January postal rate increase - and we end up in a subsidizing position again. As one Director said, perhaps we should review our rate structure each year, and see where we stand. This I shall do for 1988, and say if the "bare mini-
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mum" amount now charged, of $14.00, bears up to the reality of our expenses.
The School of the Wisdom is presenting weekly courses from January 18 to March 31, 1988, at the Theosophical Society, Adyar, India. If there are any members who are able and wish to attend these classes, I have a brochure that I can copy and send to you. Anyone who would attend must write for application forms from: The International Secretary, The Theosophical Society, Adyar, Madras 600 020 India.
The request must also have details of membership in the Society and a letter of recommendation from the General Secretary of the Section.
I grant that the above notice may be somewhat late for the planning that is needed to travel such a distance to attend these classes. However, most notices are received by me very late considering how much advance time is required to get these notices into print in this magazine. I have requested longer notice from my correspondents so that there might be a chance, with a good advance notice, of reaching those few who could and would attend if they are advised in time. - S.T.
THE THEOSOPHICAL SOCIETY IN CANADA ANNUAL REPORT 1986-87
There was no special project or enterprise this past year by the Canadian Section itself, so there is nothing to report in that direction.
The matter of membership decline is one of great concern to me, and should be to all members. The decline was particularly se-
vere this year, and mostly from one location. It looked like we would have had a slight net increase this year, until June when I finally got figures from one Lodge.
Membership in the West shows very slight growth, or holding their own over deaths and dropouts, both as to Lodges and members-at-large. A new Study Centre, the Dharma Study Centre was formed in Alberta earlier this year. The Western Lodges reflect vigour. I wish that I could report the same for the East. The East is a disaster area.
A Society or Lodge must put strong emphasis into its life aspect. Its life consists of a suitable place for members and also the public to meet and carry on the Society's activities. The public is the source of new members to replace the attrition, and a source and reason for outreach. The Society and/or Lodge having a suitable place to stand then provides a space for lectures and classes and the very important library of books; and in recent years, library of video and audio tapes. This is the minimum blueprint for a living Lodge and a living Theosophical Society. Of what value is a great sum of money, the materialistic size emphasized, if the Lodge/Society is in limbo, with no suitable place to perform its life aspect? One Eastern Lodge departed its quarters, with no positive undertaking in advance (that was ever disclosed to me) of obtaining a replacement place before the efforts for departure. Should not consideration of a replacement place of operations seem to be the priority before even considering leaving the old?
So it was a shock, but not a surprise, when I got the figures for that Lodge showing a drop in membership of almost fifty per cent from last year's figures.
Another Eastern lodge which has been declining slowly over the years, decided in March of 1986 to go Study Centre status in 1987, which they did, so we lost a Lodge in the East by this process.
At this rate of decline in the East, I predict that in two years' time, at the end of my first term in office, that there will be no Lodges east of the Alberta-Saskatchewan border. I have managed to survive my first year in office: will the Eastern Lodges survive to the end of my first term? I sincerely hope that a number of people, the more the better, will take certain constructive hints and constructive criticism given here, and make every effort to prove my prediction wrong. Much publicity, plus effort to full Lodge operation are needed to revitalize our Eastern Lodges and former Lodge.
I have discussed with the Board of Directors the idea of promoting and sponsoring more traveling lectures across the country. The lecturers would be from abroad and from our Canadian ranks. The Canadian Section would provide the plane fare, and local Lodges provide the place to speak, lodging and publicity. The Section could pay part of lodging and publicity for Lodges that could not afford the whole amount.
The Canadian Section of the world-wide Theosophical organization has the potential to lead a full life in bringing what is in essence the message of the Great White Lodge to people of intellect and to serve as an educational institution, due to our long time of establishment, and hopefully active centres. But this is possible only if each and every one of us actively participates in the group work, whether as leader and director or member in the ranks. A passive member, age and health excepted, is no member.
- S.L. Treloar
President and General Secretary Toronto, Ontario
September 12, 1987
Our regular S.D. Class continues. For our end-of-the-month meeting on November 25, Ted presented a paper on "Psychic Cycles".
On December 16, we held our Winter Solstice get-together, when members and friends contributed a short story, reading, or poem. Music applicable to the season was interspersed between these presentations.
At this meeting we were also happy to formally welcome into the Lodge, Vicky and Gary Lawrence. The Lawrences, along with their son Jason, have been attenders at a number of our meetings for over a year.
The evening concluded with refreshments and an opportunity for informal discussion on a variety of topics.
Meetings resume on January 6, and we look forward to another year of study and the sharing of those studies in our end-of-the-month presentations.
To all members worldwide we send our fraternal greetings in this one-hundredth anniversary year of the publication of The Secret Doctrine.
- Doris Davy, Secretary
In the week of September 24 to October 1, 1987, Edmonton Lodge was honoured with a visit by Jean Coulsting and Rex Dutta from Camberley, Surrey, England. Jean Coulsting is the founder and current editor, and Rex Dutta is co-founder and contributor to Viewpoint Aquarius, Britain's leading UFO magazine. These two most interesting people consented to present various lectures to the members of Edmonton Lodge.
Their talks, based on two main themes, were both enlightening and interrelated. The first theme centred on the Concentric Key method of study. Focusing on the Proem of The Secret Doctrine, Rex and Jean "got off English" and beyond the "nuts and bolts" into a universal language of Oneness and Timelessness. A one-day workshop on the Proem kept the members on a higher level of thought and discussion.
One evening featured a lecture by Jean on "Mind, the Spiritual Pivot." She stressed that although "Mind is the Slayer of the Real," the Higher Principles need the manas ego and terrestrial personality to cement the pivot of its experiences.
On the next evening, Rex enlightened us further speaking on "The Deeper Levels of Life" in which he quoted various passages from The Secret Doctrine, and expanded on the topic, "Life is Spirit in Matter." Both spoke on the following evening on "The Inner Rhythms of The Secret Doctrine." Many of the members were fascinated with the manner in which these talks were conducted, and how the various subjects were expanded upon.
The second theme was "Flying Saucers: Radical New Research." Discussions on this subject reached thousands of people by means of radio and television talk shows and interviews, in which our visitors participated. The public response was amazing. A public lecture presented by the Edmonton Lodge attracted some 400 very interested listeners. It was a most successful evening.
Needless to say, Jean Coulsting and Rex Dutta had no time to spare in Edmonton, and we are very grateful to them for agreeing to follow through with the schedule that had been arranged for their coming. A special "thank you" to Ernest and Rogelle Pelletier who so gracefully hosted our guests, and co-ordinated the events of the week. Thanks also to the other members of the "Dutta and
Coulsting Committee" for the numerous meetings they held in preparation for this visit.
A higher level of thought was no doubt the order of the week, and it is hoped that all in attendance at any of the lectures described above will try to maintain a level in their everyday lives. We can only hope that Jean and Rex will someday return to Edmonton to raise our thoughts and enlighten us further.
- Dolores Brisson
KROTONA WINTER - SPRING PROGRAM
The Krotona Winter-Spring Program commences January 10, 1988 and continues through May 13.
Two-week special training workshops will open and close the extended term. Conducted by Diana Dunningham and Nancy Whistler, and with several sessions led by Joy Mills, these will provide an opportunity for acquiring skills in branch and study centre work as well as for in-depth studies of the theosophical worldview.
Among the courses offered are: "Studies in The Secret Doctrine" and "The Secret Doctrine: One Hundred Years Later" - Joy Mills. "Re-Creation, Ritual and Radiance" - Carolyn Kay. "Remembering Who We Are" - Nancy Whistler. "The Fundamentals of Theosophy: Study Circle" - Diana Dunningham. "The I-Ching and You" - Stephan Hoeller. "The Bhagavad-Gita for Today" - John Algeo. "Teaching Tales: Old and New" - Beverley Noia. "Theosophy and American Transcendentalism" - Mary Jane Newcomb. "Ancient Wisdom - Modern Insight" - Shirley Nicholson. ''Light on the Crisis in Evolutionary Theory" - Patrick Milburn.
Special workshops and seminars include: "The Archetype of the Cosmic Shaman in Near Death and UFO Experiences: Implications for Human Evolution" - Kenneth Ring. "Therapeutic Touch" - Janet Macrae. "Creativity - Everyone's Tool for Self-Transformation" - Phyllis Roberts.
Further information from the Director, Krotona Institute School of Theosophy, 46 Krotona Hill, Ojai, CA 93023, U.S.A.
THIRD INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON THEOSOPHICAL HISTORY CALL FOR PAPERS
An International Conference on Theosophical History will be held July 15-17, 1988, Friday evening to Sunday, at 50 Gloucester Place, London the headquarters of the Theosophical Society in England. It is sponsored by the Theosophical History Centre, whence registration forms and other information can be obtained after January 1, 1988.
Any person may submit a paper for possible presentation at the Conference. Papers may be on any aspect of Theosophical History. Summaries of proposed papers should reach the Program Committee by February 28, 1988. They should be double-spaced, typed in black or blue-black, and should not exceed 200 words. Decisions on summaries accepted will be sent to authors in late March. Full papers will be presented in not more than 30 minutes, with discussion to follow.
Conference participants will be expected to make their own arrangements for accommodation in London and for meals, though light refreshments will be available between sessions.
All correspondence to Theosophical History Centre, c/o 12 Bury Place, London WC1A 2LE, England.
The Theosophical Crisis in Australia: The Story of the Breakup of the Theosophical Society in Sydney from 1913 until 1923. By A.J. Cooper. (Thesis submitted for the degree of Master of Arts in Religious Studies, The University of Sydney, 1986. 428 pp. typescript, double-spaced.)
Of all the crises experienced by the Theosophical Society in the turbulent first quarter of this century, the "split" in Sydney, Australia, nearly seventy years ago, was surely one of the more serious. Thanks to John Cooper's prodigious efforts, it is now also the best documented. His work, prepared as a scholarly thesis is so complete that he is surely justified in his claim that here... we have all the information that can now be found to tell the story of why the Theosophists, with their belief in universal brotherhood, should have fought so bitterly."
(Technically, therefore, this is not a book, although it would make a wonderful contribution to Theosophical history if it were published and made available to a wider public. Also, under the circumstances, this is more a notice than a review.)
It is not easy to sum up the Sydney T.S. conflict. Essentially, it is the struggle of a large Lodge to maintain its rightful autonomy. But the story is not as simple as that. It is interwoven with such questions as C.W. Leadbeater's morality, the activities of other organizations within the T.S., the Theosophy/Neo-Theosophy controversy, and the activities of several strong personalities (Besant, Jinarajadasa, Leadbeater, Wedgwood on the one hand, Martyn and Prentice on the other).
One might well ask, what is the relevance of the Australian crisis to Canada? Interestingly, back in the 1920s, it had a marked influence here. Attitudes of members, even Lodge policies were strongly affected - especially in Toronto. The events that were then taking place 12,000 miles away prompted a "protectionist" attitude which took a very long time to die out.
Cooper's thesis could serve as a model for any Theosophical history. He has gathered together all the available facts, and has been generous in presenting the opinions of all the parties in this bitter controversy. The reader is thus able to reach his own judgements. The author allows himself a mere nine pages to address the question, "What does it mean?" (pp. 388 - 396) and no doubt wisely sums it all up by quoting the well known passage from The Key To Theosophy (p. 305):
"Every such attempt as the Theosophical Society has hitherto ended in failure, because, sooner or later, it has degenerated into a sect, set up hard-and-fast dogmas of its own, and so lost by imperceptible degrees that vitality which living truth alone can impart."
If it is possible to learn from history, there are scores of valuable lessons for Theosophists to be found in the pages of Cooper's monumental thesis.
- Ted G. Davy
The Golden Dawn and the Esoteric Section, by R.A. Gilbert. London: Theosophical History Centre, 1987. 24 pp. Price incl. postage: $8.00 U.S.
This is another of the papers presented at the First International Conference on Theosophical History, 1986. The author, R.A. Gilbert, is a historian of the Golden Dawn; indeed, he ranks among the principal authorities on this subject.
This well researched paper touches on some of the squabbles that were among the growing, if not birthing, pains of the Golden Dawn. Probably to no little extent, the T.S. was fortunate that the other organization came into being. At least it helped divert the fury and eccentricities of some of the more excitable T.S. members.
Several prominent English members of the Theosophical Society and its Esoteric Section were also among the first members of the Golden Dawn, including Wm. A. Ayton, Isabel Cooper-Oakley, S.L. Macgregor-Mathers, T.H. Pattinson, Wm. W. Westcott and W.B. Yeats. Of these, Cooper-Oakley was among those admitted into Madame Blavatsky's "Inner Group" in 1890; Westcott was also invited to join but evidently refused to take the I.G. pledge, although he was an E.S. member.
Gilbert posits "that the Esoteric Section (of the T.S.) was created specifically to avert the loss of would-be practical occultists to the ranks of the Golden Dawn, and to prevent a complete split between the followers of the Eastern and those of the Western Path." (p.7) The first assertion strikes me as extremely doubtful. After all, the expulsion of the likes of Mabel Collins and W.B. Yeats hardly suggests that a numbers game was being played in the T.S. at that time.
The second assertion, however, refers to a potentially damaging polarity in the ranks of the T.S. in the 1880s, a situation that was not neutralized by the death of Anna Kingsford. Whether this situation contributed to the reasons for founding the E.S., is a question we shall probably never be able to answer with conviction, but we are in debt to Mr. Gilbert for drawing attention to the possibility. This crucial period in the history of the Society has received little serious attention to date and if this paper does nothing else, it will have served a useful purpose if it encourages further study.
Another of Gilbert's conclusions is that the Golden Dawn and the Esoteric Section "...represented not so much incompatible ways of occultism as parallel paths for quite incompatible personalities." But how could this be, when so many held dual membership? Also, not a few would argue that the paths were definitely not parallel. (This perspective was ably presented in an article by David Reigle, "Theosophy and the Golden Dawn" in The American Theosophist, June, 1978, reprinted in The Canadian Theosophist, Vol. 59, No. 4: Sep-Oct. 1978.)
The above disagreements should not be construed as a criticism of this paper as a whole. Well documented, it is a useful addition to the history of the T.S. in the years immediately preceding H.P. Blavatsky's death.
- Ted G. Davy
A READER'S NOTES
The 1988 Aquarian Almanac, maintains the high standard of previous editions. For each day, at least one quotation provides a key thought for contemplation; also given is essential astrological activity, moon phases, birth dates of important historical personalities, and other information. The complete week is spread over a two-page layout which also includes the calendar for the current and succeeding month. A theme for each week is also supported by a pertinent quotation.
The Almanac is available in two sizes: 28 x 17.2 cm for the desk; and 16.5 x 10 cm for the pocket. It is published by Concord Grove Press, P.O. Box 959, Santa Barbara, CA 93102 U.S.A.
The indefatigable John Robert Colombo has done it again. His latest, Colombo's New Canadian Quotations, is now in the bookstores. No, this isn't a supplement to the famous original Colombo's Canadian Quotations and other associated titles, but a brand new collection. It has been arranged alphabetically by subject - hours of happy browsing through such topics as Animal Rights, Philosophy, Religion and Science, all the way to Zodiac. Nothing under Occult, you ask? Well, if you accept Ghosts, Parapsychology and Spiritualism, yes.
The new collection is not only a compilation of quotations by Canadians: it also includes remarks by other nationals about Canada. Among these are such as Sir Edwin Arnold, Carl Jung, Voltaire and W.B. Yeats. Numbered among the fifteen hundred sources are at least four earlier members of the T.S. in Canada. Well over 4,000 quotations are here: they all add up to rewarding reading. This book probably tells more about the Canadian psyche than many a learned tome.
I was about to write that the number of books with John Robert Colombo's name on the title page must soon be approaching sixty. Then my eye hit a line on the dust cover that this is his seventy-seventh! Soon there'll have to be an anthology of Colombo quotations. In the meantime, I understand yet another major anthology is in the works, a large volume dealing with the "Mysterious" in Canada. Should be interesting reading.
Colombo's New Canadian Quotations, 480 pp., is published in hard cover by Hurtig Publishers, Edmonton. Price $29.95.
Earlier this year, Colombo brought out a new volume of "Poems and Effects": Off Earth, published by Hounslow Press. Once again the remarkable anthologizer proves he is his own master of words as well as a collector of other peoples'. There is more wit and genuine feeling for humanity in this little book than I have come across in a long time.
Here's an item that would be better described as "A Listener's Note."
The eminent Canadian composer Harry Somers was the guest on the "Music in My Life" feature of CBC Stereo's Arts National Friday Night on November 27. His reminiscences included mention of how an important step forward in his musical education came as a result of his piano playing on the platform of the Toronto Theosophical Society, where his mother, Ruth Somers, was an active member during the 1930's and 40's.
Still in his 'teens, he was playing one of his own compositions before the lecture one Sunday evening. (Probably during the summer of 1942, and of course it would have been in the old building at 52 Isabella Street.) The lecturer on this occasion was the artist Eric Aldwinkle, who was then about to depart for overseas as an official war artist. Eric was so impressed with what he heard that he telephoned his friend, the distinguished music teacher Reginald Golden, and told him he must hear this talented boy.
Godden was similarly struck with Harry Somers' potential talent, and took him on as a pupil. Later, he urged him to study composition seriously, and recommended "just the right person" for this, John Weinzweig. Thus Somers also came to study under this second famous teacher, to whom he gives much credit for his future success as a composer.
Eric Aldwinkle (1909-1980) a Toronto Lodge member, designed the special, symbolic cover for the November, 1950 issue of The Canadian Theosophist, celebrating the
75th Anniversary of the Theosophical Society. He is also remembered for Two Fables, which he wrote and published at his own expense that same year for the Toronto T.S.
Arthur J.O. Cooper, member and Treasurer of the Hermes Lodge of the Theosophical Society for many years, passed away suddenly on November 7, 1987. He was 84.
Arthur, who was born in Vancouver, was educated in England. He attended the University of British Columbia, and took part in the "Great Trek" of 1922. He was an ardent and expert mountaineer, and was well known for his superb rock climbing ability. He explored a great many peaks in the Province, and Mt. Cooper was named for him.
An accomplished pianist, Arthur entertained at Hermes Lodge public meetings for many years with his renditions of classical music. He was also an expert photographer and his nature pictures and time-lapse flower pictures were of professional quality.
Arthur had a great sense of humour, and was always cheerful and optimistic. He will be missed very much by his many friends and especially by the members of Hermes, Vancouver and Orpheus Lodges.
- Eva Sharp
"THE SLEEPING SPHERES"
Now available: "The Sleeping Spheres", by Jasper Niemand, with notes by Willem B. Roos. Price $2.00 including postage. Available from: The Canadian Theosophist, 2307 Sovereign Cres. S.W., Calgary, Alberta, Canada T3C 2M3
1988 EUROPEAN SCHOOL OF THEOSOPHY
Tekels Park, Camberley, England July 23 - 29, 1988
This 1988 European School of Theosophy will be held at Tekels Park during the week immediately preceding the European Congress. Transportation from Camberley to the Congress will be arranged.
Prospective students, including those from abroad, are advised that the two events are quite distinct. The School will offer an intensive 5-day study program, and admission will be by application on the appropriate forms. The Directors will as usual reserve the right of selection among applicants.
Program details, charges, etc., will be available in due course. Meanwhile, application forms and further information may be obtained from the Secretary of the European School of Theosophy, Mrs. Elise Probert, 21 Alfreda Road, Whitchurch, Cardiff CF4 2EH, Wales, U.K.
ARTS AND THEOSOPHY CONFERENCE
An Arts and Theosophy Conference and Workshop has been planned for August 14-21, 1988, at Camp Indralaya (Orcas Island, Washington). It is sponsored by the Orcas Island Foundation and the Theosophical Society in America, and is open to interested participants from any part of the Theosophical Movement. For details, write: Paul Meier, 2501 Trimble Street, Paducah, KY 42001 U.S.A.
INDEPENDENT SPIRITUAL LIFE (Continued from page 130)
emanation, one development leads gradually - or suddenly - to another. Each step on the ladder pre-exists in the Archetype. There is no loss or absence in the All-Inclusive, which will never cease in its pattern of Production, Change and Movement.
We see at a distance - and what is at hand. With boundless horizons, the reach of the Inner God is unlimited. For, it is none other than the Absolute. Idealist philosophers, mystics and theosophers have pointed out that Absoluteness becomes self-conscious in Mankind's lower mind. It becomes fully Self-Conscious in the Higher Mind. A strong hint is that the best form of worship would be to cultivate the soul of the Mind.
That golden apex known as the flowering of the Mind is Wisdom. It is celebrated by H.P.B. as "an emanation of the divine Principle... a single Supreme Consciousness, the One and All.. ." This Wisdom holds that "the Primeval Monad... which retires into darkness and is itself Darkness (for human intellect)," the "formless and Non-Existent," not otherwise comprehensible to us, is the bedrock of all things, all existence. (3)
Shadows in the Void. Phases of the Absolute arise and vanish, things appear and disappear. Not lost therein, the Spirit of Consciousness is the Cosmos. Conditioned Immortality for mortals is quite true. Minds (not personalities) incarnate and reincarnate. Eternal is the Divine Ground, Infinite Space. Spiritual Life magically captures the Eternal Moment, freezing it in Timelessness. Absorption in the Oneness of All, and the Allness of the One avoids mere annihilation - as the latter doesn't "exist"! What Is, Is, as the old Greek philosopher said. Limitless potentiality continually engulfs the world. Ultimate Freedom is from fixed versions of physical, astral and mental constructions and occurrences. Lives flourish in mystery in the One Life.
Expansion waits for no details or road maps. Unlike the believer's God in His Heaven, the philosophic Absolute cannot be pinpointed. Descriptions are neither possible, appropriate, or desirable. Those that abound, though made in all sincerity, are worthless. Independent minds do not waste precious time on diagrams of heaven. Such matters are unphilosophical and unscientific.
Mysticism has been described, somewhere, as "the Science of the Absolute." Evelyn Underhill, an authority, defined it as "the expression of the innate tendency of the human spirit towards complete harmony with the transcendental order" capturing "the whole field of consciousness..." While the Whole is greater than its parts, yet they are necessary, at least for the time being, in partially comprising the Totality. Knowing this, the balanced mystic performs his daily duties to the best of his ability.
The culmination is the "experience called 'mystic union'... Whether that end be called the God of Christianity, the World-soul of Pantheism, the Absolute of Philosophy... (it) represents the true line of development of the highest form of human consciousness." (4)
A new Awareness often overlooks mere forms, the better to realize the Formless. What is called "the naked Godhead" is the origin of all, binding "the Universe in love." It is true that some mystics, like St. Catherine of Genoa, were carried away in their declarations of love. She announced that "I desire not that which comes forth from Thee; but only I desire Thee...." (5)
Therefore it has been charged that the "exclusive" mystics deny appearances in proclaiming and adoring the Absolute Invisible One and Only. On the other hand, it is said that an "inclusive" mystic finds "the inward in the outward as well as the inward in the inward." (6) Assigned to the convent kitchen, one Saint found God in the pots and pans. And Madame Blavatsky explained that Theosophy's Idealism is objective, not subjective in the mind alone. (7) Totality is diffused, with no centre. At the same time, in true metaphysics, she featured the Doctrine of Maya, relative illusion.
Even Illusion is not final in Infinity and the Freedom of Absoluteness. To mortal minds, the cosmic power of Maya makes possible the whole of phenomenal existence. In turn, these appearances are derived from the Divine Abyss, the Depth of nothingness. The Theosophical Glossary states that eternal reality alone is changeless, all else (mayavic) is subject to differentiation, with beginnings and endings. (p. 211) Balanced views match and master, as much as possible, the cosmic polarity in the universal equilibrium.
Many, but not necessarily all, polarities, forms and appearances may be most valuable, if and when properly applied and employed. In the over-view, they do have their allotted time and place. The All-Inclusive Absoluteness is beyond relativity. To us, mere mortals, the form and features of time and place loom large, at least for the appropriate period of time. We must deal with this. While observing a person, an object, an idea, we see a passing phase of the Almighty. Let us appreciate what we may of Him, or It.
Is the wide view too much for too many? So it would seem. Mystics are in a minority, a condition that is part of the pattern. Those
who are ready, however, may find in Mystical, Symbolic Theosophy, the first, last and only Independent Spiritual Life.
1. H.P. Blavatsky Collected Writings (BCW) XI, 89.
2. Martin Buber, A Believing Humanism, p. 132.
3. BCW XI, 89-90.
4. Evelyn Underhill, Mysticism, p. xv.
5. ibid. p. 248.
6. ibid. p. x.
7. H.P. Blavatsky, The Secret Doctrine I, 631.
HOME STUDY COURSE
A Theosophical correspondence course is now available to Canadian residents only. It is offered to new students of Theosophy, especially those who are unable to participate in local study groups.
Further information may be obtained by writing: HOME STUDY, 57 Eleanor Crescent, Georgetown, Ont. L7G 2T7.
NOTICE TO SUBSCRIBERS Commencing with the NOV/DEC 1987 issue, the annual subscription to The Canadian Theosophist will be $9.00; individual issues $1.50 each. The increase will also be reflected in members' dues, which include a magazine subscription.
The change in rates is regretted, but it has been necessitated by rising printing and postage costs over the past several years.
INDEX - THE CANADIAN THEOSOPHIST, VOL. 68
Aengus and Iuchian.................................. 7
Aldwinkle, Eric ......................................138
After-Death States, The .............68, 89, 127
Annual Meeting ................................ 59, 107
Annual Report ....................................... 132
Arts and Theosophy Conference ..........139
Animals, Human Treatment of.............. 107
Barborka, Geoffrey A............. 20, 68, 89, 127
Barr, Dudley W. .................................55, 81
Beatrice Hastings and the "Defence of Madame Blavatsky......... 73, 113
Besant, Annie .........................................29
Blavatsky, H.P. ...........................26, 93, 112
Blavatsky, Helena Petrovna (Portrait)..... 25
Aquarian Almanac ............................. 137
Bibliography of H.P. Blavatsky ..........117
Colombo's New Canadian Quotations ......... 138
Off Earth ............................................ 138
Boyce, Colyn........................................... 93
Brisson, Dolores ...................................134
Burnier, Radha.......................................... 9
Buxey, D.J. ...........................................109
Calgary Lodge ..................... 37, 61, 109, 134
Capital Punishment ................................. 44
Centenary Histories ...........................65, 94
Chatwin, Doreen .....................................38
Christianity, Theosophy and ...................29
Colombo, John Robert .......................... 138
Computer and "Intelligence ..................... 12
Cooil, Beth ..............................................34
Davy, Doris ............................... 61, 109, 134
Davy, Ted G. .......................... 44, 65, 67, 92, 93, 94, 117, 136, 137
Dissemination of Theosophy Conference ........... 11, 46, 104
Drop of Water, A.....................................40
Edmonton Lodge .................13, 84, 110, 134
Elder,S......................................... 7, 56, 101
European School of Theosophy. 58, 84, 111
First and Last Secret ..............................49
Fortas, A.N......................................... 55, 80
Gomes, Michael ............................... 73, 113
Grail, Holy, The Quest for the.......... 97, 122
Guignette, Jean-Paul ................................5
Hamilton Lodge ....................................... 37
Harris, Lawren .......................................1, 4
Hastings, Beatrice ............................ 73, 113
Hermes Lodge .............................. 14, 61, 85
Holy Grail, The Quest for the........... 97, 122
Hope of the World, The ............................4
Hughes, Claude...................................... 41
Independent Spiritual Life .....................129
Eclectic Theosophist, The ...................67
Path, The............................................. 44 Protogonos........................................ 117
Star, The .............................................44
Theosophical History ........................... 93
Theosophical Sparks ......................... 104
Theosophy ........................................... 44
Theosophy in South Africa .................. 70
Viewpoint Aquarius ............................ 134
Justice in Human Life ...............................1
Krishnamurti's Changing Views on the T.S. ........19
Krotona Programs ............................ 64, 135
Laudahn, William R..................... 49, 80, 129
Law of Retribution, The ..........................70
Locks and Keys in the S.D................ 36, 45
MacPhail, Richard ................................... 37
Mitchell, Roy .........................................106
Music, Self-Transformation Through ....... 34
Notes and Comments .............. 11, 35, 59, 83, 107, 131
Barclay, Don........................................ 59
Carlaw, Gladys.................................... 35
Cooper, Arthur ............................ 107, 139
Ferguson, Andrew ............................... 11
Ladd, Herbert G. .................................59
Lorimer, Henry ...............................35, 39
Slater, V. Wallace ................................ 59
Smith, Elizabeth G. .............................83
Walker, Jessie..................................... 11
Webley, Evelyn............................... 35, 39
Olin, Phyllis ............................................. 44
Outer and Inner Worlds, The.................. 56
Pelletier, Rogelle......................... 13, 84, 110
Playle, Ruth Eva .....................................62
Power to Receive and to Reject ............. 41
Presidential Address, From the ................9
Presidential Election ...............................59
Proxies and Proxy Voting .......................59
Quest for the Holy Grail, The......... 97, 122
Reader's Notes, A........... 44, 67, 93, 117, 137
Retribution, The Law of (Poem).............. 70
Breath of the Invisible .........................44
Cyclic Evolution ................................... 92
Golden Dawn and the Esoteric Section, The ......136
100 years of Modern Occultism ..........65,
100 Years of Theosophy ..................... 65
Self-Transformation Through Music ....34
Theosophical Crisis in Australia, The .......... 136
Ring Out, Wild Bells (Poem)................. 121
Secret Doctrine Question and Answer Section ....... 20, 68, 89, 127
Self-Transformation Through Music ........ 34
Sharp, Eva............................... 14, 39, 61, 85
Sin Against Life ..................................... 112
Smythe, Albert E.S. ..............................126
Soil (Poem) ........................................86, 93
Solovyoff's Fraud .............................73, 113
Somers, Harry ....................................... 138
Sufi Connection .................................53, 80
Sutcliffe, Joan .............................39, 97, 122
Synthesis, The ......................................101
Theosophical History Conference .........135
Theosophical History, What Kind Of......... 5
Theosophical Society,The..................... 126
Theosophy and Christianity ....................29
Theosophy, Dissemination of.................. 11
Toronto Lodge ........................................62
Treloar, Stan .......11, 35, 59, 83, 107, 131, 133
Vancouver Lodge .................................... 38
van Hees, Laetitia................................... 37
Victoria Lodge ............................. 14, 63, 111
Weaver, Sheila M. .............................86, 93
Webb, Lorna ...........................................70
What Kind of Theosophical History ...5, 109
World Animal Day................................. 107
Yorke, Mollie.......................... 15, 40, 63, 111
BEACONSFIELD STUDY CENTRE: Secretary, Mrs. Suzanne Hassanein, 81 Heritage Rd., Beaconsfield, P.Q., H9W 3V2. (Phone 695-2618 or 697-8198).
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