THEOSOPHY, Vol. 19, No. 1, November, 1930
(Pages 1-3; Size: 8K)
IS Theosophy a Revelation to be believed, or Knowledge to be regained? Was H. P. Blavatsky a Teacher, or was she a Revealer, a Leader, an Authority, whether on her own ipse dixit or that of others?
These are fundamental questions, because they go at once to the heart of the questioner, and disclose to him his own attitude of mind, his own substratum of experience -- in short, they arouse his own latent power of discrimination, his Buddhi-Manas(1), or inherent capacity for direct perception.
If we think that these questions can be answered for us by another, or can be answered at all by anyone except for himself, then at once we have thrown ourselves outside the channel of Spiritual knowledge, and must of necessity rely on hearsay. We become by that mental act divorced from our power of direct perception, incapable of correct cognition, and substitute reliance on others for self-reliance. Mere testimony of this one or that one becomes our basis of judgment, our rule of conduct. Our principle of discrimination sinks into abeyance, because we have, in Spiritual fact, invoked an outside power and authority. Thenceforth we can cultivate our reason, our power to make inference, our faith in and reliance upon this or that, but all our efforts and all our sacrifices will carry us no higher than their source -- impressions received from others and the conclusions we base upon those impressions. All this is mere dependence on and cultivation of the Psychic, not the Spiritual, principles of our being. This may land a man either in religion or science, in materialism or in superstition -- lower Manas(2) at its best or at its worst, but it can never bring out Intuition and Self-reliance. The man can "do the best he knows," but he can never know what is best to be done, because he has denied his own Divinity. He can only be a leader or a follower of other men, a believer or a disbeliever in his own personal experiences in psychology, or in those of another -- tossed hither and yon by every passing wave of emotion, by every current of feeling, every tide of thought, every strong influence brought to bear upon him. How can it be otherwise if we act upon impressions, not upon fixed Principles?
If the teachings of H. P. Blavatsky and her Masters are true, then there was a time when we had the same knowledge as They, for we as well as They were upon the same plane of perception. They have retained or regained the Spiritual knowledge which once was common to us all alike. We cannot regain our lost Spiritual knowledge without taking into account the steps of our descent. The stairs by which we ascend are the same as those by which we fell, where They remained the Achyuta -- the unfallen. The difference lies in the direction taken by the Pilgrims, and that direction is determined by the motive, which is but to say, by the ruling Principles in us, whether Buddhi-Manas or Kama-Manas(3). The ruling principles in human nature, and therefore in human science and human religion, are the Lower, not the Higher Self. The Higher Principles apply to all alike, for they are universal and impersonal, not finite and personal.
If Theosophy is not Knowledge to be regained, then it is mere theory or revelation, no better if no worse than the various systems upon which the vast majority of men rely, to which they give their devotion and from which they receive their rewards -- wished for, unwished for, and mixed. If H. P. Blavatsky was in fact a Teacher of the history of Spiritual evolution, then the Movement inaugurated by her is one of Education, and rests, not upon her say-so but upon our capacity for direct perception, upon our finding in ourselves the Truth of her teachings. This is the first-hand evidence we all need to regard.
All men have the intuition of brotherhood: why should they permit that universal perception to be betrayed by selfish and partisan appeals to the selfish and partisan elements in themselves? This is the method of sectarianism, as rampant among Theosophists as among other men.
All men have the intuition of Self-reliance: why should they deceive themselves by dependence upon externalities, whether in men, things, or methods? This is the method of psychism.
All men have the intuition of virtue: why should they allow their Divine energies to be dissipated in forbidden or in unwise channels? This is the method of ignorance.
Where shall our Education begin, if not in the revision of our fundamental ideas of virtue, of self-reliance, of brotherhood, of Self?
COMPILER'S NOTE: The following is a separate item which followed the above article but was on the same page. I felt it was useful to include it here:
THE ETERNAL BASIS
The Work of Masters is the establishment of a "Brotherhood of Humanity, a real Universal Fraternity." Loyal to the Great Predecessors of all Time, They hold with absolute Devotion to the CAUSE of all Causes, which alone can bring about the amelioration of the condition of "the Great Orphan -- Humanity." They do not concern Themselves with the changing tide of Public Opinion. They have "the whole of Nature for Their Object."
They work with the mind of the race(4) as They find it. Their Method is the inculcation of True Ethics based Upon the Eternal Verities. Ethics that "sink into and take hold of the real man -- the reincarnating Ego," and the practice of which leads to the Goal, the realization of the Identity of all Life -- Universal Brotherhood.
Impersonality is Their key-note and Their watch-word. Their Aim, Purpose and Teaching is consistently held in the fore-ground; They remain in the back-ground. The Law of Nature -- the Law of Sacrifice -- forms Their Basis of Action; They need no temporal Rules and Regulations.
They make no distinction among Devotees. He who serves Humanity, serves Them. He who will live Their Life, will know Their Doctrine.
Going to School Again
FOUR (4) FOOTNOTES LISTED BELOW:
COMPILER'S NOTE: I added these footnotes; they were not in the article. If any of them don't paint an accurate enough picture, or are incorrect, I hope the Editors of THEOSOPHY magazine will spot them and point the inaccuracies out to me, so that I can make the necessary corrections.
(1) "Manas" means Mind; "Buddhi" means Intuition; "Buddhi-Manas" means Intuitional-Mind (Higher mind).
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(2) "Manas" means Mind.
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(3) "Buddhi-Manas" means Intuitional-Mind (Higher mind); "Kama-Manas" means Desire-Mind (lower mind).
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(4) "Race" means the whole Human Race here.
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