23 February 2017

The Aquarian Theosophist, February 2017

 


The opening thought of our February edition says:      

He who leaves aside desire is able to have a real purpose in life.

On page one the reader sees a few lines on “The Energy of the Sun in Pisces”. Page two presents “The Lord of the Seas” and “A Dialogue in Every Soul”.

The Power of Voluntary Simplicity” is on page three. On page four, “Is Family Life a Duty? A Door to the Secret Wisdom of Theosophy”.  The note “The Territory of Peace” starts on page five. On page six, “The Theosophy of Numbers”. The note “The Light of Wisdom in Human Soul” is on page seven.  

The February 2017 edition includes these topics:  

* Getting Closer to the Divine World: A Choice Before the Student; 

* A Mahatma, On the Real Task Of the Theosophical Movement;

* Thoughts Along the Road; 

* Our Planetary Life - Atma and the North Pole;

* Blind Belief Loses Strength;

* Self-Discipline and Perseverance; and

* ILT or the Paradox of Independence.

The 15 pp. edition includes the List of New Texts in our associated websites.  


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You can find the entire collection of The Aquarian” at our associated websites.

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E-Theosophy e-group offers a regular study of the classic, intercultural theosophy taught by Helena P. Blavatsky (photo).

  
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20 February 2017

Suicide Is Not Death

Respect for Life Constitutes an Inevitable
Duty; Self-Knowledge is the Only Liberation

William Q. Judge
  

There is no escape from life, or from the law of
Karma. Each one must attain Wisdom and Responsibility.




As a student of Theosophy and human nature I have been interested in the discussion of the subject of self-murder to which The World has given a place in its columns. The eloquent agnostic, Col. Ingersoll, planted his views in the ground with the roots of them in the grave, giving the poor felo de se [1] nothing beyond the cold earth to cheer him in his act, save perhaps the cowardly chance of escape, from responsibility or pain. Those who, as Nym Crinkle says, occupy themselves with replying to Col. Ingersoll fall back on the mere assertion that it is a sin to kill the body in which the Lord saw fit to confine a man. Neither of these views is either satisfactory or scientific.

If suicide is to be approved it can only be on the ground that the man is only a body, which, being a clod, may well be put out of its sufferings. From this it would be an easy step to justify the killing of other bodies that may be in the way, or old, or insane, or decrepit, or vicious. For if the mass of clay called body is all that we are, if man is not a spirit unborn and changeless in essence, then what wrong can there be in destroying it when you own it, or are it, and how easy to find good and sufficient reason for disposing similarly of others? The priest condemns suicide, but one may be a Christian and yet hold the opinion that a quick release from earth brings possible heaven several years nearer. The Christian is not deterred from suicide by any good reasons advanced in his religion, but rather from cowardice. Death, whenever natural or forced has become a terror, is named “The King of Terrors”. This is because, although a vague heaven is offered on the other side, life and death are so little understood that men had rather bear the ills they know than fly to others which are feared through ignorance of what those are.

Suicide, like any other murder is a sin because it is a sudden disturbance of the harmony of the world. It is a sin because it defeats nature. Nature exists for the sake of the soul and for no other reason, it has the design, so to say, of giving the soul experience and self-consciousness. These can only be had by means of a body through which the soul comes in contact with nature, and to violently sever the connection before the natural time defeats the aim of nature, for the present compelling her, by her own slow processes, to restore the task left unfinished. And as those processes must go on through the soul that permitted the murder, more pain and suffering must follow.

And the disturbance of the general harmony is a greater sin than most men think. They consider themselves alone, as separate, as not connected with others. But they are connected throughout the whole world with all other souls and minds. A subtle, actual, powerful band links them all together, and the instant one of all these millions disturbs the link the whole mass feels it by reaction through soul and mind, and can only return to a normal state through a painful adjustment. This adjustment is on the unseen, but all-important, planes of being in which the real man exists. Thus each murderer of self or of another imposes on entire humanity an unjustifiable burden. From this injustice he cannot escape, for his body’s death does not cut him off from the rest; it only places him, deprived of nature’s instruments, in the clutch of laws that are powerful and implacable, ceaseless in their operation and compulsory in their demands.

Suicide is a huge folly, because it places the committer of it in an infinitely worse position than he was in under the conditions from which he foolishly hoped to escape. It is not death. It is only a leaving of one well-known house in familiar surroundings to go into a new place where terror and despair alone have place. It is but a preliminary death done to the clay, which is put in the “cold embrace of the grave”, leaving the man himself naked and alive, but out of mortal life and not in either heaven or hell.

The Theosophist sees that man is a complex being full of forces and faculties, which he uses in a body on earth. The body is only a part of his clothing; he himself lives also in other places. In sleep he lives in one, awakes in another, in thought in another. He is a threefold being of body, soul and spirit. And this trinity can be divided again into its necessary seven constituents. And just as he is threefold, so also is nature - material, psychical or astral, and spiritual. The material part of nature governs the body, the psychical affects the soul and the spirit lives in the spiritual, all being bound together. Were we but bodies, we might well commit them to material nature and the grave, but if we rush out of the material we must project ourselves into the psychical or astral. And as all nature proceeds with regularity under the government of law, we know that each combination has its own term of life before a natural and easy separation of the component parts can take place. A tree or a mineral or a man is a combination of elements or parts, and each must have its projected life term. If we violently and prematurely cut them off one from the other, certain consequences must ensue. Each constituent requires its own time for dissolution. And suicide being a violent destruction of the first element - body - the other two, of soul and spirit, are left without their natural instrument. The man then is but half dead, and is compelled by the law of his own being to wait until the natural term is reached.

The fate of the suicide is horrible in general. He has cut himself off from his body by using mechanical means that affect the body, but cannot touch the real man. He then is projected into the astral world, for he has to live somewhere. There the remorseless law, which acts really for his good, compels him to wait until he can properly die. Naturally he must wait, half dead, the months or years which, in the order of nature, would have rolled over him before body and soul and spirit could rightly separate. He becomes a shade; he lives in purgatory, so to say, called by the Theosophist the “place of desire and passion”, or “Kama Loka”. He exists in the astral realm entirely, eaten up by his own thoughts. Continually repeating in vivid thoughts the act by which he tried to stop his life’s pilgrimage, he at the same time sees the people and the place he left, but is not able to communicate with anyone except, now and then, with some poor sensitive, who often is frightened by the visit. And often he fills the minds of living persons who may be sensitive to his thoughts with the picture of his own taking off, occasionally leading them to commit upon themselves the act of which he was guilty.

To put it theosophically, the suicide has cut himself off on one side from the body and life which were necessary for his experience and evolution, and on the other from his spirit, his guide and “Father in heaven”. He is composed now of astral body, which is of great tensile strength, informed and inflamed by his passions and desires. But a portion of his mind, called manas, is with him. He can think and perceive, but, ignorant of how to use the forces of that realm, he is swept hither and thither, unable to guide himself. His whole nature is in distress, and with it to a certain degree the whole of humanity, for through the spirit all are united. Thus he goes on, until the law of nature acting on his astral body, that begins to die, and then he falls into a sleep from which he awakens in time for a season of rest before beginning once more a life on earth. In his next reincarnation he may, if he sees fit, retrieve or compensate or suffer over again.

There is no escape from responsibility. The “sweet embrace of the wet clay” is a delusion. It is better to bravely accept the inevitable, since it must be due to our errors in other older lives, and fill every duty, try to improve all opportunity. To teach suicide is a sin, for it leads some to commit it. To prohibit it without reason is useless, for our minds must have reasons for doing or not doing. And if we literally construe the words of the Bible, then there we find it says no murderer has a place but in hell. Such constructions satisfy but few in an age of critical investigation and hard analysis. But give men the key to their own natures, show them how law governs both here and beyond the grave, and their good sense will do the rest. An illogical nepenthe of the grave is as foolish as an illogical heaven for nothing.


NOTE:

[1] Felo de se, Latin for “felon of himself”, is an archaic legal term meaning “suicide”. Early English common law considered suicide a crime. (Wikipedia) 

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Suicide is Not Death” is reproduced from “Theosophical Articles”, William Q. Judge, Theosophy Company, Los Angeles, vol. II, p. 366-370. The article is based on the teachings of Helena Blavatsky and the Masters of the Wisdom. See for instance “Collected Writings”, H. P. Blavatsky, TPH, volume IV, pp. 257-261.

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In September 2016, after a careful analysis of the state of the esoteric movement worldwide, a group of students decided to form the Independent Lodge of Theosophists, whose priorities include the building of a better future in the different dimensions of life.  

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E-Theosophy e-group offers a regular study of the classic, intercultural theosophy taught by Helena P. Blavatsky (photo).

  
Those who want to join E-Theosophy e-group at YahooGroups can do that by visiting https://groups.yahoo.com/neo/groups/E-Theosophy/info.


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18 February 2017

Profile of the Independent Lodge

Ten Fundamental Points that Define the ILT

Carlos Cardoso Aveline





The Independent Lodge of Theosophists has some specific characteristics which make it distinct from other organizations.  

Resulting from the centennial experience of the theosophical movement, the structure of the ILT started working approximately one decade before its formal independence, which took place in September 2016.

Since 2009 the association worked as part of the United Lodge of Theosophists. The experience was positive: the work produced fruits and gained strength. At the right moment, however, it became clear that more autonomy was needed.

The method used by the future ILT had been firm from the beginning of its work as a lodge of the ULT.  Once the independence of the Lodge was declared and its own name was adopted, its profile became easier to see and to understand.  One can summarize it in ten points, as we shall see.

1) Small yet International

Although numerically small, the Independent Lodge of Theosophists is an international organization. It works in various languages and has thousands of readers in dozens of countries.

2) The Mahatma Letters as an Inspiration

The ILT is the only theosophical organization which adopts the Letters received from Masters of the Wisdom as its highest bibliographical priority and main guide for action.

The Lodge sees a marked difference in level between the letters from the teachers and the rest of the Esoteric Literature in any time or age.

Of course, it is necessary to know how to study the Letters. The student must expand his inner affinity with the Pedagogy of the Masters and Helena P. Blavatsky. Their method of work   is stated in the Letters and has been carefully examined in our associated websites. The teachings of HPB and of the Mahatmas offer a key to interpretation which enables the student to better understand the philosophies of every nation and all time, revealing their essential aspects.

3) WQJ, a Humble Disciple of HPB

Unlike many associates of the United Lodge of Theosophists, the Independent Lodge does not place William Q. Judge on the same level of knowledge as HPB. For the ILT, Judge was her disciple, and a student who made mistakes.[1] On the other hand, the ILT has a sincere admiration  for the life and work of  William Judge, and highlights the fact that he  was one of the main founders of the movement in September 1875.  

4) The Theosophical Effort as a Field of Tests

The ILT sees the theosophical movement as a probatory field. It states that the true movement is in the periphery of discipleship and subject to intense tests.  To deny, therefore, the existence of difficulties is deluding oneself and deceiving others. It means failing before starting. This sort of defeat results from a naive Pedagogy. The ILT speaks the truth to people: the fire of Truth burns ignorance in the life of each pilgrim who persists. There is suffering while the healing unfolds in one’s soul.

5) A Community of Researchers  

The ILT does not work with blind faith; it relies on research, instead. According to the lodge, the act of studying is not limited to memorizing. It consists in testing the knowledge in the daily life, taking notes and actively looking for information in legitimate sources, besides preserving in one’s memory what is studied.  The ILT sees the movement as a community of researchers.  

6) Rejecting Whatever is False

It is wise to remember that there are illusions in the Esoteric world. The Lodge investigates and shows to the public the methods of pseudo-theosophy.

The independence of the ILT as an association is historically linked to the preparation, publication and distribution of the book “The Fire and Light of Theosophical Literature”.[2]  While the volume was printed in 2013, the mission that led to it started in 2005: its challenge involves the active defense of Helena Blavatsky. It began surrounded by a number of obstacles, some of which have been removed already.

Through its various lines of action, the ILT preserves and highlights that which is authentic in the movement, calmly unmasking active frauds and harmful forms of quietism.

7) Ethics and Discipleship  

Through a number of articles, the ILT observes and defines the direct relation between sincerity and the search for Discipleship.[3]

The importance of the ethical duty seems to have been forgotten by the big political corporations and bureaucracies of the movement, a fact which provokes a certain paralysis in them.

8) No Blind Attachment to Routine  

The Independent Lodge has no attachment to outward forms belonging to the past. It avoids mere repetition and works for the future of mankind, aiming at the year 2075 and beyond.

9) Accuracy Regarding Bibliographical Sources

As a rule, the publications authored by associates of the Lodge quote from books and magazines in paper which belong to its physical, intercontinental library, or are otherwise easy to verify. Many of the originals used are available in PDF and also belong to the ILT library. Granting the legitimacy of its sources of information is a top priority for the Lodge. It offers the exact references of texts and authors it quotes from, while publishing an article. It welcomes messages from readers pointing to possible mistakes.

10) Intense Action in the Online World

Although the ILT promotes physical meetings and actions and sees their importance, it works fundamentally on the subtle level of the online world.

Most of the above points are seen as resulting from the continuous study of the Mahatma Letters and the writings of HPB.

For the pilgrim who perseveres, the original teachings unfold in levels of consciousness that gradually expand before their vision. For this reason one of the mottos of the ILT is: “First deserve, then desire”.  

NOTES:

[1] For evidence on this topic, see in our associated websites the article “The Main Founder of the Movement”.

[2] More on that can be seen in the text “The Making of the ‘Fire and Light’ ”, which is available at our websites.

[3] See for instance in our websites the articles “Finding the Light on the Path” and “M.C.’s Text on Karma, Annotated”. A remarkable text from a Mahatma on this topic is “Two Schools of Occultism”.

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On the role of the esoteric movement in the ethical awakening of mankind during the 21st century, see the book “The Fire and Light of Theosophical Literature”, by Carlos Cardoso Aveline.  

  
Published in 2013 by The Aquarian Theosophist, the volume has 255 pages and can be obtained through Amazon Books.

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17 February 2017

A Controversial Letter

Adyar Leaders Denied the Veracity
of the ‘Prayag Letter’ from a Mahatma

Jean Overton Fuller


Ms. Jean Overton Fuller (photo) was born on 7 March 1915 and lived up to 2009



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A 2017 Editorial Note:

The following text reproduces chapter 37 in
the book “Blavatsky and Her Teachers”, by
Jean Overton Fuller (East-West Publications,
in Association with TPH-London, 1988, 270
pp., see p. 86). Here Jean O. Fuller discusses
the Letter from a Mahatma of the Himalayas
which is published in our associated websites
under the title “Faith in God Is a Superstition”.
It corresponds to Letter 134 or CXXXIV, in the 
non-Chronological Editions of “The Mahatma Letters”,
and to Letter 30, in the Chronological Edition (Philippines).

(Carlos Cardoso Aveline)

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There had been formed at Allahabad an all-Brahmin Lodge, the only Lodge of the Theosophical Society to omit from its objects the following: ‘To form a nucleus of the Universal Brotherhood of Mankind’, presumably because a Brahmin, unable even to sit at table with a non-Brahmin, could not call a non-Brahmin ‘brother’.

Now they had protested to Sinnett that they had not received messages from the Masters and did not understand why not, seeing that ‘beef-eating, wine-drinking Englishmen’ had been so favoured. It was in these circumstances that Madame Blavatsky wrote to Sinnett from ‘Dehra Dun. Friday 14th’ (no year) [1], ‘Saw at last M. and showed him your last… I wrote this under his dictation and now copy it’.

Morya announced, somewhat roughly, that because Koot Hoomi and he had opened a correspondence with two men it did not give everybody else a claim to hear from them, especially such as had ‘never given up caste… their exclusive selfishness’, and none of that group would hear from them. H.P.B.’s letter continues: [2]

“…Unless he is prepared to do as D. Mavalankar did, - give up entirely caste, his old superstitions and show himself a true reformer - (especially in the case of child marriage)… It is useless for a member to argue ‘I am one of a pure life, I am a total teetotaller and an abstainer from meat and vice…’ There are 100 of thousands of Fakhirs, Sannyasis and Saddhus leading the most pure lives, and yet being as they are, on the path of error, never having had an opportunity to meet, see or even hear from us… Mr Sinnett and Hume are exceptions. Their beliefs are no barriers to us for they have none. They may have had influence around them, bad magnetic emanations the result of drink, Society and promiscuous physical associations (resulting even from shaking hands with impure men)… which with a little effort we could counteract… Not so with the magnetism… proceeding from erroneous and sincere beliefs. Faith in the Gods and God and other superstitions attracts millions of foreign influences, living entities… we would have to use more than ordinary exercise of power to drive them away… unprogressed planetaries who delight in personating gods. There are… ‘Chohans of Darkness’, who have never been born on this or any other sphere…”

There seems to be a warning here that the polytheistic religions, unless their symbols are kept very pure, risk degenerating into the cult of nameless entities which, when not indeed demons, can, by inhabiting the thought-forms engendered, form distracting company. I knew a Catholic lady once, who was convinced that all hits at religion in the Mahatma Letters, including it seemed this one, were at the Christian Church. Well, if the cap is felt to fit there may be no harm in anybody’s wearing it, but it was not for her Church this was intended. Perhaps the Muslims, who forbid all personifications of deity, keep to the safe side. [3]

After Madame Blavatsky’s death, G.N. Chakravarti, who had influence with Annie Besant, complained about this letter and she, and Olcott (to whom she passed the complaint although he did not see the letter), averred that it could not be genuine. [4] Yet it is now in the British Museum and it is in Madame Blavatsky’s handwriting. Annie Besant and Olcott misunderstood the letter to be an attack on the Hindus, whereas it was the Brahmins’ contempt for others that called forth the Master’s rebuke. In any case, neither seems to have taken the point that the Moryas or Mauryas were the historic and legendary enemies of the Brahmin caste.

Damodar had, by breaking caste in sitting at table with Theosophists, forfeited his inheritance; his father made an alteration to his will. [5]

NOTES:

[1] “The Theosophical Movement”, Anon. - i.e. Robert Crosbie and other members of the United Lodge of Theosophists (Dutton, New York, 1925), pp. 624-625.

[2] British Museum, Additional MSS.45286, CXXXIV: “Mahatma Letters”, pp. 461-462.

[3] Note from the Editor: At this point J. Overton Fuller got the facts wrong. Islam is probably the most aggressive and fanatic of all monotheisms. She probably was thinking of the Sufis. (CCA)

[4] Crosbie, ibid., pp. 627-628.

[5] Here lies the origin of an erroneous footnote by Jinarajadasa to “The Early Teachings of the Masters”, p. 65, that “the Disinherited” was Damodar K. Mavalankar - which error has generated passages of scorn from the Hare brothers in their book “Who Wrote the Mahatma Letters?”. They accuse the Mahatmas, where they refer to Damodar and the Disinherited as being in correspondence with each other, as trying to make two persons out of Damodar. But Damodar and the Disinherited are two persons. Damodar is a Maratha of Brahmin caste living in Bombay, disinherited by his father. The Disinherited (whose real name we never learn) was disinherited by his grandfather long before our story opens, and lives in Tibet, as is evident from his giving to Koot Hoomi a stock of note-paper he had no occasion to use, and from his suffering a nasty accident on a path above a ravine through setting foot on a magnetised rag set by Dugpas. Damodar had not at that date been to Tibet.   

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In September 2016, after a careful analysis of the state of the esoteric movement worldwide, a group of students decided to form the Independent Lodge of Theosophists, whose priorities include the building of a better future in the different dimensions of life.  

000 

E-Theosophy e-group offers a regular study of the classic, intercultural theosophy taught by Helena P. Blavatsky (photo).

  
Those who want to join E-Theosophy e-group at YahooGroups can do that by visiting https://groups.yahoo.com/neo/groups/E-Theosophy/info.

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