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William Meader

We are grateful to William Meader for allowing us to publish articles from his Emergent Light blog.

 

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William Meader is an author, teacher and counselor. Much of his work is focused on the subjects of Spiritual Creativity, the Evolution of Consciousness and the Art of Meditation. At present he is teaching in the United States, Canada, Europe, Australia and New Zealand. He resides in Oregon, and can be contacted through his website at meader.org.

 

 

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The Planetary Heart

 

The planetary heart center is the heart chakra to the Being that ensouls the fullness of the earth. Occultly referred to as the Planetary Logos, this divine entity is constitutionally the same as that of a human being, in that it too has a higher and lower nature, and it too is struggling to transform its personality so that it becomes the rightful servant to its soulful nature. Just as with a human being, the life force of the Planetary Logos expresses and evolves through seven major chakras, and it is one of these that is the topic of our discussion—the planetary heart center.

When viewing chakras from a global perspective, it is important to realize that the heart center of our Planetary Logos is the abode of the Masters of Wisdom—those liberated souls that have perfected themselves and are now transcendent to the struggles and challenges of human existence. The loving radiation coming forth from the Planetary Logos finds its outlet of expression through the collective vibration of these Masters, and through the Christ as their directive head. Indeed, they are the repository for the love vibration of our planetary god. It is therefore no wonder that love is considered the most essential energy in support of human evolution.

There is an important relationship between the planetary heart center and the disciple on the journey toward enlightenment. The Path is one that leads directly toward this planetary focal point of love, deep within. Each step upon the Upward Way draws the seeker into greater intimacy with the loving radiation of the Masters, and therefore with the heart of the Planetary Logos. As this approach continues, this divine energy precipitates into the heart and mind of the disciple, and with heightened sensitivity at each step trodden. Indeed, the measure of where one stands upon the Path of Evolution is partially determined by one’s growing sensitivity to this subtle source of divine love.

 

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White Magic

~ Lightening the Tint of Gray ~

Within our everyday vernacular, magic is a term used to describe the illusionary art of prestidigitation or the wielding of genuine supernatural powers, either for the good or the ill. Yet, when viewed through the eyes of Esotericism, both of these perspectives are woefully inaccurate. True magic has nothing to do with the manipulation of appearances through sleight of hand, nor is it the exercise of supernatural forces by a select few. Rather, magic is simply the art of thoughtform building, and is an inescapable feature of life in the human kingdom.

One of the defining features of human consciousness is the advent and development of individualized thought. It is the capacity to generate thoughtforms free from the tendencies of the more instinctual aspects of mind—attributes of consciousness developed when living life in the animal domain so long ago. For a human being, the evolution of consciousness has much to do with engaging the mind to generate individualized ideations. The origin point of the process can be the personality or the soul. In either case, the thoughts generated are constructions of intelligent mental substance. Essentially, thoughts represent the assemblage of a myriad of living mental particles (elementals), and this is true whether they are initiated by the soul or its outer garment, the personality.

When thought is generated by the personality, the substance contained within the lower subplanes of the mental plane act as the building blocks for the emergent idea. Yet when the soul initiates a creative impulse, it is the higher mind that responds to its intuitive vibratory note. The emergence of progressive, loving and wise ideations then crest upon the shores of the human thought. Herein is the true distinction between white and black forms of magic. For white magic is that which is impulsed by the creative urge of the soul, while black magic is simply the thoughts generated by the comparatively separative and self-serving nature of the personality. For those who have come to the point of partial soul-personality fusion (the disciple) it is perhaps best to understand that we are gray magicians, and that the evolution of consciousness is to gradually lighten the tint of that gray.

 

 

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Principle of Fusion

 

When one consciously steps upon the Path, the Principle of Fusion becomes increasingly operative in life. To commit oneself to the spiritual journey suggests that the aspirant is starting to awaken to his or her internal duality. By this is meant that such an individual is beginning to sense, deep within, a higher and lower dimension to his or her thoughts, feelings and physical inclinations. Essentially, the contrast between the soul and personality is becoming delineated. And, the more this internal dichotomy is sensed, the more the aspirant strives to transform the lower (personality) into a willing servant on behalf of the higher (soul). This then stages the next phase in the evolution of human consciousness—the fusion of soul and personality.

Efforts at soul-personality fusion represent the hallmark of a disciple’s transformation journey. As more of the personality is purified, the soul is increasingly able to infuse its love, wisdom and creative intention into the mind of the lower-self. This is the primary goal of all who are consciously walking upon the Path. It is to transform the personality so that it willingly becomes (through the process of infusion) the soul’s outer agent in service to a needy world.

The process of soul-personality fusion normally requires several incarnations to fully achieve. For countless lifetimes, personality has been the dominating and guiding agency of our thoughts and actions. As such, it does not easily yield to the soul’s guiding persuasions. Invariably, there will be times when the personality rebels, reasserting its authority and control. A battle thus ensues. Essentially, it is a struggle for control between the higher and lower division of one’s consciousness.

In some incarnation, the Principle of Fusion will have been fully and successful wielded by the soul, thus indicating that the personality has fully surrendered to the soul’s authority and wise promptings. Discipleship indicates partial infusion, while initiate life commences when full infusion has been achieved. For we who are on the Path of Discipleship, it is therefore best to accept the fact that, until full infusion has been achieved, the Path is a hill and valley experience of sorts. The swings between soulful alignment and the reclaiming authority of the personality are unavoidable. Indeed, prior to enlightenment, even the Buddha and the Christ would have dealt with it, for it is built into the fabric of human evolution itself.

 

 

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Mind

~ The Organizing Principle ~

What is mind? It is a question that has intrigued philosophers and scientists for centuries. When viewed from the human perspective, mind has historically been allied with an individual’s sense of identity. We need only recall René Descartes most famous proclamation, cogito ergo sum (I think therefore I am), to see the association of the human mind with the principle of self. Esoterically, there is much truth to this concept, in that the soul is intimately related to mind, particular the higher mind. Yet mind is occultly understood far beyond the bounds of human consideration. All categories of life, whether subhuman or superhuman, are agents of mind, at least in the most fundamental sense. For mind is the organizing principle underlying consciousness itself.

Mind is that which organizes impressions coming from without and from within. It is that which organizes the information delivered to us via the five senses. By so doing, it brings order and structure to our perceptions. It facilitates the construction of ideations that are ultimately registered as thoughts within human consciousness. It is also that which organizes mental substance into thoughtforms in response to the intuitive promptings emitted by the soul. Herein is highlighted the bidirectional nature of the mind. On behalf of the personality, it organizes sensed impressions coming from without (the outer world) as a prerequisite to the construction of thoughtforms. Yet is also organizes the impressions coming from within (from the soul) into new and progressive ideations.

When studying the subject of mind, it is crucial to remember that there is a distinction between mind and the content of mind. Mind is the organizing principle underlying all dimensions of consciousness, while the content of mind refers to that which the mind has constructed. The first is a process foundational to consciousness itself, while the latter is best understood as an effect. And though these comments have been largely applied to the human mind, it is also true when considering the organizing principle that gives rise to a type of plant, a species of animal or the consciousness of the being that ensouls the entire solar system, the Solar Logos. In truth, there is no place where mind is not.

 

 

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The Hierarchy of Love

 

Rooted in the Law of Attraction, love is the energy that underpins the evolution of all kingdoms of nature upon this remarkable planet of ours. Indeed, love is the most fundamental energy being developed by the Solar Logos—the divine entity that is manifesting in and as our solar system. In many ways, the Solar Logos is God to us, and if its evolutionary intention is to cultivate and express love, it stands to reason that love is an energy that must permeate and facilitate the evolution of all forms of life upon the earth.

At its most dense point of expression, the mineral kingdom, love is recognized through various chemical affinities; in the plant kingdom it is evidenced in the dance of the bee as it gathers nectar from the flower; and within the animal domain, it shows itself through herd instinct and the impulse to nurture. Love is therefore touched and used in differing ways according the evolutionary needs of the kingdom of nature it animates and enriches.

Within the human kingdom, love manifests on many levels. At its most base expression, it reveals itself as animal magnetism and personal desire, while at its height it has a more impersonal feel, usually recognized as a profound love of humanity and its oneness. When this lofty love is sensed, it indicates sure evidence that the love emitted by the planetary heart center has been inwardly touched. In this light it can be seen that love is pervasive and also hierarchical.

 

 

 

 

Group Progress

 

The Law of Group Endeavor

 

Because the soul is simply an agent in support of the inner ashram, its work in the world is always done in group formation. Such an understanding is crucial when we begin to consider The Law of Group Endeavor. Always the soul works within the context of an inner group (or several groups) coming forth from the ashram found upon the buddhic plane. Though members of the inner ashram may establish collaborative initiatives in their outer service, it is nonetheless important to realize that the group is a subjective fusion of souls. The objective dimension of cooperative work is important, but is still secondary to the inner group. Whether or not the disciple is serving in physical isolation or is outwardly engaged in a collaborative initiative, he or she is therefore never alone.

The Law of Group Endeavor is becoming increasingly active and influential in the life of the serving disciple. It is coming into prominence due to the fact that humanity is inching its way into the Aquarian dispensation with its emphasis upon group consciousness and collective action. The energy streaming forth from Aquarius seeks to shape in human minds a sense of the value of group effort and cooperative enterprise. And as we are only at the front edge of entrance into the Aquarian Age, the tendency toward group endeavor will likewise grow.

As this sacred principle increasingly begins to take hold within the consciousness of humanity, more and more people will realize that no one sees the truth, but everyone sees a piece of it.

 

 

The Principle of Essential Divinity

 

The Esoteric Philosophy has long held the view that, in the ultimate sense, all that exists is sacred and divine. For reasons that we (as human beings) are not able to fathom, the One Life manifests itself in and as Cosmos. It is the One becoming the many. All things in Creation are therefore elements of the One Life incarnate within the vast diversity of forms evident in both the seen and unseen dimensions of the universe. Herein is found the core truth behind one of the many edicts that give foundation to spiritual service— the Principle of Essential Divinity.

The Principle of Essential Divinity states that at the level of pure essence, every human being is divine. Indeed, we are each gods in the making, and spiritual service is rooted in this understanding and conviction. All past divine revelations have led humanity to the recognition of this unfolding truth. Over the course of countless centuries, humanity has been inspired by means of prayer and worship to find relationship with God, only to now enter into an era where we are awakening to the next great revelation—that we are the divinity we seek.

 

 

Silence

 

Voice of the Silence

 

The evolution of human consciousness can be recognized in one’s growing intimacy with the soul, deep within. Indeed, it has been said that the spiritual path represents an inner journey to the soul and its guiding influence. And though there are several means by which we can recognize the soul’s promptings in our lives, none are more important than the ability to hear the Voice of the Silence as it gently caresses the fringes of the mind.

Within the nomenclature of esotericism, the Voice of the Silence refers to the communications of the soul toward its outer vehicle, the personality. In short, it represents the voice of the soul. The use of the word “silence” within its title provides a clue to understanding the soul’s communicative approach. For the soul speaks to the higher mind, and does so though faint intuitive whispers. This voice is wordless while profoundly informing to the mind at the same time. The Voice of the Silence emerges as a soundless sound and a voiceless voice—a paradox, to be sure.

When on the Path, and over the course of many incarnations, there are actually two types of spiritual listening that are destined to unfold. When an individual first steps onto the probationary path, it is the “still small voice” that is inwardly heard. This type of hearing is evidenced through an emerging social conscience resulting in the development of good character. Yet further along, when on the path of discipleship, the Voice of the Silence begins to be heard. Beyond conscience, this inner (yet silent) voice is revealed in one’s growing recognition of the soul’s creative purpose, intuitively sensed.

 

 

Waters

 

 

White Magic

~ The Condition of the Waters ~

 

One of the steps in the soul’s creative process requires that the magician assess the condition of the waters. As water is ever the symbol for the emotional dimension of life, there is a need to ascertain the state of the one’s astral body to determine its readiness for adding an essential emotional ingredient to the new idea being urged by the soul.

It must be remembered that adding a feeling tone to an idea is essential in order to give the soul’s descending thoughtform the quality of magnetic appeal. It is also through emotion that added vitality is imbued within the thoughtform, thus facilitating its emergence into the light of day. Yet it is at this stage in the process where the greatest potential for glamour (distortion) can also arise. Exaggerated emotion can easily make a mountain out of a molehill (to use an old adage). Assessing the condition of the waters before emotionally charging the thoughtform is therefore well advised.

It may be asked, what is to be looked for when examining one’s emotional condition? The answer relates to the degree of agitation present within the emotional body of the personality. When one is feeling negative emotions, it is obviously not the time to be adding emotion to one’s new and creative ideations. Yet, the same is true with considering strongly positive emotion, such as enthusiasm, passion or zeal. These too give indication that the waters are agitated, even though they may be prized by the personality. Ideally, the best time to consciously add a feeling tone is when the astral body is calm, as if it were a limpid pond.

While in a state of inner calm, the waters of emotion will then rightly saturate one’s soul inspired idea. Thus will the thoughtform be rendered attractive and vital, yet without the exaggerations and distortions created by untempered emotion.

 

 

Sharing

 

 

Principle of Sharing

 

Though there are many spiritual laws and principles foundational to the emerging Aquarian Age, there is none more essential than the Principle of Sharing. Given the nature and scope of the crises humanity now faces, it is not difficult to see why this spiritual axiom plays such a pivotal role in our future. Indeed, as a kingdom in nature our survival may well depend upon it.

Today the resources of the world are largely being hoarded by the privileged few and, as a consequence, the disparity between the rich and poor is ever widening. This is true whether we examine it from an individual perspective or when contrasting the wealth of nations. Indeed, the crises humanity now faces are largely rooted in a sense of injustice, recognizing that our relationship to each other is wrongly oriented. Yet the urge to share is what is required in order to create right relationship between individuals and nations. Given this, the growth and maturation of the Principle of Sharing is the hope of the future.

Paralleling this is the fact that we are collectively beginning to awaken to the soul within ourselves. The soul is the dimension of consciousness that helps us to sense humanity’s oneness. Behind our vastly diverse outer lives we are inwardly one. Initially, this awakening emerges as the recognition that we are one in kind, and later it evolves into a realization that we are one in essence. This awakening is important, in that it propels us to find ways of living that can ensure the sustenance of all things, and it is from this soulful awareness that the Principle of Sharing can arise. For if we are truly one, then concern for the welfare of humanity as a whole will gradually supersede our tendency toward separative perception. Sharing then emerges, not simply out of philanthropic response, but as a general attitude toward life.

It should here be noted that the Principle of Sharing does not only pertain to economic fairness and resource allocation, for when the soul becomes increasingly fused into the fabric of human thought, the application of sharing is broadened. The sharing of knowledge and time is also important, as well as an empathic ear. These too are resources worthy of wise and compassionate distribution.

 

 

Libra

 

 

Libra

 

~ In Search of Right Relationship ~

 

In addition to its association with balance and harmony, Libra has long been recognized as the zodiacal sign most concomitant with relationship. Sometimes called the sign of partnership, Libra conditions one’s consciousness with a heightened sensitivity to all forms of interpersonal relationships. Yet when the Libran individual is consciously on the Path, the nature of this conditioning influence widens. Not only is such a person interested in seeking peaceful and harmonic relations with others, the search for right relationship with all things becomes the fundamental matrix of his or her thoughts and desires.

Either consciously or unconsciously, the Libran disciple is asking him/herself, what is the right relationship to have with everything I interface with in my life? Questions as to what is the right relationship to have with one’s career, friendships, government or even the natural environment are just a few of the many arenas where attention to relational balance and congruency is sought. This also can be directed toward psychological dualities, such as the harmonization of the mind and heart, the masculine and feminine, or even the soul and the personality. Essentially, Libra is the sign that supports the harmonization of all dualities as a function of truly living a soulful life.

In many ways, the urge to find right relationship is the theme underlying much of the crises we witness in our world today. Whether considering the environmental crisis, the atrocities now being witnessed in the Middle East, or the financial inequities evident in today’s world, our yearning to find remedy to such things is growing. Herein we see the influence of Libra as it shapes our vision of reality on a collective scale.

Finding right relationship is always preceded by casting light upon wrong relationship, and from its contrast, crisis predictably arises. Over the last few years, for example, we have become increasingly aware of our natural environment, and humanity’s wrongful relationship to it. By exposing this, the environmental movement took root as a rectifying force in support of right relationship. The battle between the environmental activists and the status quo thus ensued. Libra is doing its work. Though the emphasis of positive change is the promise of the Aquarian Age, it will only be fulfilled through the influence of Libra upon the minds and hearts of humanity.

 

 

Goodwill

 

Principle of Goodwill

 

In every country and corner of the globe, distrust and conflict seems to be the order of the day. Each generation wishes that their children will live in a more peaceful and joyous world, yet, as a consequence of the crises we collectively face, such hope seems to be fading as well. When considering the enormity of the many problems facing humanity, it is clear that our survival may largely depend upon the humanity’s capacity to cultivate and integrate the spirit of goodwill. Indeed, the Principle of Goodwill is one of the most essential tenets foundational to the new and dawning age.

When goodwill is part and parcel of an individual’s way of being in the world, it gives clear evidence that the soul has stepped forward. As a lofty dimension of consciousness, the soul gives pattern and shape to our thoughts, and from this the perception of goodwill arises. It is interesting to consider the fact that goodwill is a compound of two words—good and will. Herein is a clue to understanding the soul’s relationship to goodwill and its expression in the outer world. That which is spiritually good is ever the prerogative of the soul, yet it requires the will of the personality to outwardly direct it in service to others. When the soul and its outer instrument of service (the personality) establish cooperative rapport, the experience of goodwill is sure.

Inferred by this is a simple yet profound truth—goodwill is the foundation from which soulful service shines forth. It is a force that not only heals and uplifts, but also carries the note of unity upon its wings. It mends wounds, and brings peace where there is pain and strife. Through the kindness of goodwill, enemies eventually unite as friends. This is why goodwill is truly the antidote to much of humanity’s plight. We live in an era when the separative tendencies of human consciousness have come to the fore, and it is the uplifting and unifying power of goodwill that moves love into action, resulting in a better world.

 

 

Seed

 

Meditation with Seed

 

It would be an understatement to say that meditation is an important spiritual discipline. Indeed, it is one of the three pillars of spiritual development (the other two being “study” and “service”). And while there are many forms of meditation available to those upon the Path, it is meditation with seed that is advocated, particularly at this transitional time in human history.

Meditation with seed has also been called contemplative meditation. At its foundation is the notion that the soul seeks to convey its wisdom, guidance and understanding into the mind of the personality, and a seed thought is used to facilitate this. Meditation with seed suggests that once the disciple has deeply entered into the inner place of soulful stillness, then s/he deliberately introduces a preselected seed thought into the mind. This seed may be in the form of a word, an image, a sentence or a geometric form of some kind. Contemplation upon this seed thought then ensues. For a time, the meditator is fully engaged in pondering his or her chosen seed thought. By so doing, particles of mental substance become activated and charged around its theme.

There next comes the phase of deep quieting of the mind, placing the meditator into a condition of poised receptivity. It is a movement from mental activity to inner stillness. Yet the condition of the mind is now different from the quieting that took place at the beginning of the meditative effort. For now the mind has been enlivened by a variety of thoughtforms that have arisen through the introduction of the chosen seed thought. And because of this, the stage of illumination has been set.

The meditator has guided his or her consciousness from a condition of profound inner stillness to a place of active contemplation, then back to the depths of silence once again. The mind is then held steady, knowing that the previously charged ideations engaged by the mind will now act as an anchor point for the downflow of the soul’s light and understanding.

This type of meditation is not based upon the mystical approach of attempting to empty the mind. In truth, it is more occult than mystical for it utilizes intervals of loving inner stillness followed by mental activity, and is practiced in a remarkably purposeful way. Through it, the mind becomes illuminated with new understandings specifically related to the mental theme that was selected. And, as a consequence, the meditator is better equipped to utilize the gained insights in service to human betterment. Such is the nature of meditation with seed.

 

 

onelife

 

The One Life

 

~ An Assurance of Immortality ~

 

In the ancient Esoteric Philosophy the whole of Creation is understood as the out-pictured existence of a single living force—a Cosmic Being. For some this hidden presence is referred to as God while, for others, Brahman, Allah or Universal Intelligence are titles often bestowed. Call it what you will, this Living Singularity underpins and infuses itself into all that exists. It is the livingness underlying the diversity of life that we witness upon our planet, as well the animating energy behind the countless constellations and galaxies that seemingly extend into infinite space. Within the nomenclature of esotericism, this Universal Being is simply referred to as The One Life.

This great singularity of life is not only the Creator of the universe and all that it contains, but is also Creation itself—a paradox to be sure. It is not God and Creation that is the foundational matrix for existence, but God as Creation. As human beings, we are not simply the product of God’s creative endeavor. In essence, we are each an aspect of God in extension—a ray of life emitted by The One Life. Given this, the entire evolutionary process of a human being is to increasingly come into the likeness of The One Life.

In truth, this understanding offers added light to the ancient truism that we are made in the image of God. When human life is perceived in this way, our understanding of death takes on a new and reassuring quality. For if God is an immortal Being, then so must we be. If we, as pure spirit (monads) are living extensions of The One Life, then our immortality must likewise be assured.

 

 

death

 

 

Death

 

~ A Perceptual Inversion ~

 

Of the many enigmas of human existence, the mystery of death reigns supreme. For some, it is a topic that invokes fear, while for others it is viewed with a sense of joyous anticipation. To unravel this mystery, we must first consider the occult axiom known as the Principle of Opposites. This principle highlights the fact that human consciousness tends to understand and interpret events in contrast to their opposites. For example, the notion of “up” is meaningless if we do not understand “down,” and happiness can only be grasped when paired to its opposite, “sadness.” Indeed, when it comes to our perception of death, we instinctually contrast it with life. Yet from an esoteric perspective this is a great misperception, for the opposite of life is not death, but birth.

This proclamation may initially seem confusing, but it is only so when considered from the point of view of the lower-self, the personality. From the vantage point of the soul, the process of incarnation is an act of self-imposed imprisonment within form. On its own level, the soul (causal body) is found upon the higher mental plane, which is relatively formless when compared to the denseness of the physical world. Therefore birth into a physical form is, to the soul, a profoundly restrictive event. In its eyes, incarnation into a physical body is a type of death.

From this it can be seen that humanity’s perception of death is a great illusion based upon a perceptual inversion. What we perceive as death does not indicate the end of life, but is rather a liberation into life. In truth, it is death unto Life.

 

 

 

Causal body

 

 

The Causal Body

~ A Treasury of Priceless Value ~

 

 

There is nothing more valuable than that which is contained within the causal body. In addition to being a hidden sanctuary deep within (as discussed in a previous posting), the causal body is the repository of wisdom that an individual has earned through the lessons learnt over countless incarnations. Often without realizing it, when making reference to “soul consciousness” we are actually speaking of the content of the causal body. Given this, it can be seen that this container of soulful wisdom is truly a treasury of priceless value.

We are given to understand that the emergence of the human kingdom took place millions of years ago during the Lemurian epoch. At that distant time, nascent man arose out of the animal domain, and a new kingdom of nature began to take form—the human kingdom. You may ask, what was the underlying reason for humanity’s birth? The answer relates us to the topic at hand, namely, the emergence of the causal body.

Out of the collective consciousness of the highest animal types, individual causal bodies began to form during that distant time. This is referred to as the period of individualization, and marks the commencement of the fourth kingdom in nature—the human. Deep within animal man, this new instrument of awareness and perception took shape. And, through its influence, early human beings began the journey toward developing their individual minds beyond animal instinct.

At the time of individualization, the causal body was akin to a newly constructed library without any books on its shelves. Yet through the struggle to survive in those early days, mental understanding and wisdom was slowly developed and stored in this hidden container, deep within. Thus, over countless millennia, this inner treasury has been accumulating its divine wealth. For those who are today consciously walking the Path, the wisdom and experience stored within their causal bodies is vast and continues to accrue. Indeed, the measure of precious content contained within it defines where one stands upon the Path to Enlightenment.

 

 

 

 

magical triangle

 

 

The Magical Triangle

~ A Series on White Magic ~

 

 

As an energy field underlying the physical dimension of life, the etheric body is the interface between the soul’s consciousness and the physical dimension of life. It is the instrument that translates impulses coming from the mind and heart into neurological and glandular responses. Indeed, no intuition, thought, or emotion can be registered within the brain without the translating influence of the etheric vehicle and the chakras contained within it. Why this is important is that there are three particular chakras that most facilitate the creative intention of the soul. They are; the ajna, heart, and throat chakras—sometimes called the magical triangle.

When properly aligned, each of the points of this etheric triangle provides the soul with an essential ingredient in support of its creative endeavor. As the representative of the third eye, the ajna center provides the soul with a sense of creative direction. Through it, the soul gazes outward. By so doing, it recognizes when, where, and how to bring forth its creative ideations. The throat chakra facilitates the construction of the new and progressive ideas that the soul seeks to express in the outer world, while the heart ensures that love pervades the entire creative effort.

It is therefore well to consider the magical triangle when preparing to initiate a soulful project into the world. When beginning your daily meditation, I would suggest that you briefly focus on these three chakras, imagining them as being linked together by strands of living light. In this way, you are helping to galvanize them in support of the soul’s creative urge. It assists the soul to utilize the magical triangle as its primary outlet for its magical intention, particularly when done with regularity.

 

 

 

 

Gemini

 

 

Gemini

~ Recognizing the Soul’s Faint Whisper ~

 

 

As the third sign upon the zodiacal wheel of life, Gemini has long been associated with the theme of communications. Having relevance to both written and verbal expression, all manner and forms of communications are energetically shaped by this astrological source. It is not surprising, therefore, that many teachers and writers come forth from the Twins. And, when looked at from a higher perch, it is an essential force when walking the Path. This is due to the fact that Gemini governs the communications between the soul and the personality as well.

When on the Path, the soul ever seeks to creatively express itself into the receptive mind of the personality. Yet this is by no means an easy task. The soul speaks via the intuition which requires that the mind be held in a state of quietened stillness to ensure right registration of the soul’s formless intuitions. Indeed, this is a fundamental theme pertaining to the higher influence of Gemini. For most of us, however, the taming of the prolific and unbridled mind can be difficult. Indeed, this is why meditation is such an important discipline to cultivate. Through the ability to meditatively hold the mind steady in the light, the soul’s intuitive gaze can then be softly sensed.

When considering Gemini and its influence upon the mind, there is an interesting paradox worthy of note. Because it is a mutable air sign, the mind of the individual born under its influence will normally be active, versatile and seemingly inexhaustible. In truth, this is a great developmental gift that Gemini bestows upon the mind of the personality. Yet ironically, when beginning to live from a more soulful orientation, it is this same mental tendency that becomes an obstacle to recognizing the soul’s faint whispers as they caress the fringes of the mind. As is often the case when trying to live a spiritually transformative life, that which is a gift to the personality can later become a hindrance to further soul expression.

 

 

 

 

Law of synthetis

 

 

Law of Synthesis

~ An Introduction ~

 

 

Within the Esoteric Philosophy, there are a variety of spiritual laws and principles that serve as its foundation and underpinning. Precepts such as the Law of Attraction, the Principle of Right Relationship, and the Law of Economy serve as guiding parameters on the long road to enlightenment. Yet of the many laws governing the spiritual journey, there is perhaps no greater dictum than the Law of Synthesis.

To understand the spiritual significance of synthesis, we must first distinguish it from unity, for often these two terms are confused with each other. Esoterically understood, unity is the energy that impels all parts within a living system to find their rightful place within that system. When we say, for instance, that the personality is learning to be subservient to soul, we are really stating that it is finding its right relationship to the soul in unity. The soul in each of us is driven by the urge to unite, first with the personality, then with the larger life that it is contained within. However, synthesis transcends unity while at the same time standing upon its shoulders.

When all parts within a living system rightly unite, synthesis emerges as a transcendent realization. It is a field of perception where all is recognized as truly and profoundly One. When the personality has completely yielded to the soul’s guiding influence, unity is achieved and the outer edges of synthesis can then be dimly sensed.

Once the personality has completely conformed to the wishes of the soul (at the third initiation) the monad is then consciously sensed for the first time. While the soul is governed by the Law of Attraction leading to unitive awareness, the monad is guided by the Law of Synthesis, thus revealing the field of universality. Indeed, unity is the portal that leads to synthesis, but does not create it. Unity must be earned through the crucible of soulful transformation, while synthesis IS.

 

 

 

 

ahamkara

 

Ahamkara

 

~ A Tendency to be Eventually Overcome ~

 

Prior to the awakening, the goal of evolution is to develop the personality into an effective ego within the outer world. When this is achieved, it indicates that the three aspects of the personality are unified, and effectively work well together. The mental, emotional and physical dimensions of the lower self are no longer at odds with each other. Instead, the personality now works as a coordinated whole. Though selfishly oriented, such a personality is a powerful force in the world. Within the Esoteric Philosophy, this is referred to as an integrated personality, and its crowning tendency is prideful self-reference. In Sanskrit, this is inclination is called ahamkara.

The destiny of the integrated personality is to be the soul’s outer garment and act as its creative agent. Essentially, the soul needs the mental body of the personality in order to generate thoughtforms on its behalf; it needs a healthy and balanced emotional body to give warmth and magnetic appeal to them; and it requires a physical body that can intelligently give outer expression to such creative ideations.

Yet herein is found a dilemma that the soul must face when working through the personality. While the threefold personality acts as an instrument through which the soul expresses, its ahamkara tendency will often distort that which is created. The removal of ahamkara is therefore an essential objective when walking the Path. Ever so slowly, the soul must convince the personality to take its eyes off itself. This is accomplished when the personality finally realizes that it is not an independent entity enlisted by the soul, but instead is merely the soul’s outer appendage.

 

 

 

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Cancer

~ A Home of a Larger Kind ~

 

For long the astrological sign of Cancer has been associated with the Mother Principle and the nest building instinct. As the cardinal representative of water, it is a zodiacal force that tends to cultivate the urge to nurture and to create a maternal place of security for those in need. Often called the ruler of the home, Cancer instinctually inclines human consciousness toward building a tangible place of safety in support of the growth and development of others. Yet when the Cancerian native is consciously walking the Path, this notion is expanded beyond the four walls within which s/he lives. For when the soul seeks to express itself in the outer life, it is not the literal home of the personality that is its field of expression. Instead, the entirety of the outer life is the soul’s abode and field of compassionate service. In this regard, the fullness of life is best understood as a home of a larger kind.

Because the mental, emotional and physical bodies of every human being are susceptible to distorted perception (sometimes called glamour), astrological forces are often ill shaped as they pattern the consciousness of the personality. In the case of Cancer, this tendency inclines an individual to see the home as a tangible assembly of bricks and mortar providing shelter, comfort and safety from the demanding forces of the larger society. Timidity, undue hesitancy and fear are common glamours which are associated with the Cancerian, and these are transformed as the soul becomes more operative in his/her life.

As the soul’s radiation increasingly becomes integrated into the Cancerian’s consciousness, the glamours of the personality gradually and steadily give way. The many departments of life are then perceived in newly expansive and enlightened ways. The interpersonal, professional and social inclinations of life (to name just a few of the many departments of human living) are now recognized as larger rooms contained with a larger home—the abode of life itself.

As the disciple transcends the inhibitions of the Cancerian glamours, the urge to nurture is likewise transformed. The soul slowly decentralizes and extends the influence of the compassionate heart.  By so doing, the urge to love, nurture and safeguard are greatly widened. The protective mother of the home becomes the wise and inclusive Mother of the World. Such are the remarkable transformations that occur when consciousness evolves under the guidance of this, the fourth zodiacal sign.

 

 

 

 

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Creative Breathing

~ The Soul’s Gesture of Upliftment ~

 

Spiritual creativity comes into being through the dynamic process of breathing. As an act of service, the soul yearns to breathe forth new and creative ideas in support of human betterment. Yet this respiratory process must not be interpreted in a conventional sense. For it is not one’s physical breathing to which we refer. Rather, it is the breath of consciousness through which the soul magically expresses its creative intention.

Human consciousness has a rhythmic or cyclic motion to it. This can be recognized in one’s meditative life. While in meditation, an individual seeks to draw him/herself into the causal body, the abode of the soul. This interior motion is the inhalation of consciousness and is the first step in the process. It is to draw one’s awareness to a deep and subtle place within—the acme point of the mind. When in the stillness of this elevated state, the soul fecundates consciousness with an intuitive seed in hopes that it will germinate into a fully realized idea or insight within the disciple’s mind.   Success in this process is assured to the extent that one can hold the mind steady in the light.

Most often the soul’s insights are experienced as nebulous and vague, at least initially. Yet through meditative contemplation, more clarity and detail begins to take shape within the mind. The broad patterns of the emerging thoughtform come into view, and the disciple begins to actively build more detail and texture into this sensed revelation. As more understanding emerges, emotional conviction is then added to the constructed thoughtform, thus charging it with heightened vitality and appeal.

Finally, the new and vitalized thoughtform is expressed in the outer world as an act of soulful service. This is the exhalation process used by the soul. It breathes forth its wisdom and love as a force that uplifts. This is the soul’s gesture of upliftment.

 

 

 

 

spiritual principles

 

 

Spiritual Principles

 

~ Projections from the Greater Life ~

 

Underpinning the Path is found an array of profound principles and governing laws. As the bedrock from which all of Creation arises, spiritual principles represent emergent patterns of truth. They guide the human soul in its capacity to express its love and wisdom in the outer world. Whether considering the Principle of Unanimity, the Law of Attraction, or the Principle of Essential Divinity (to name just a few) they are the archetypes that will lead each of us to eventually cross enlightenment’s threshold.

It must be remembered that Life is essentially hylozoistic, in that every category of life is nested as a cell of consciousness within a vaster entity. So it is with human beings. As a kingdom of nature, humanity is understood as a layer of consciousness found within the body of the Planetary Logos—the entity that ensouls the Earth itself. And, it is from this that the root and source of spiritual principles can be understood. The principles that govern the evolution of the soul are simply projections of divine thought arising from our Planetary Logos as It seeks to evolve an aspect of Itself through the human domain. It can be rather humbling to realize that the most essential laws that govern human evolution are merely the out-pictured thoughts of the planetary god within which we reside. Yet so it is.

Much can be said about the logoic principles that guide and condition the Path. They set the parameters for all of human evolution, and give directional impulse to the body of the soul (causal body) in its march toward perfection. Indeed, they shape the subtle patterns that serve as the very foundation of our spiritual lives. A deep inquiry into several of these spiritual principles will prove enriching, and will therefore be forthcoming.

 

 

 

 

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White Magic 

~ Adding the Emotional Ingredient ~

 

White magic is sometimes referred to as the art of thoughtform-building. The goal of this ancient practice is to translate divine intuition (as impulse by the soul) into a set of progressive thoughtforms that can advance humanity in some fashion. Yet this is really only the beginning of the magical process. After the magician has mentally constructed a soul-inspired thoughtform, an emotional sheath must be added as a necessary ingredient.

Though the emotional body of the personality can, at times, be quite challenging, its role is nonetheless crucial in the magical work. When wisely integrated into the process, emotions can offer the descending thoughtform two essential ingredients, each of which is needed to assist in its manifestation. Firstly, imbuing a new idea with a measure of emotion adds living vitality to it. Indeed, one is much more likely to manifest a new idea if there is a degree of emotional conviction associated with it. Upon honest examination of our own experience at conveying ideas to others, most of us can see the truth in this notion.

Secondly, emotions can add magnetic appeal to the progressive idea(s) that the magician seeks to bring forth into the outer world. Through his or her emotional body, the agent of the soul (personality) is able to establish rapport with the Law of Attraction. In this way, the thoughtform can become appealing and lovingly magnetic. This is an enormously valuable role of emotions as utilized in the magical process. It ensures that underlying one’s creative endeavor the quality of attractive love is pervasively present.

Though there are many challenges related to bathing one’s creative ideas with emotion, these will be discussed in a further posting. For now, my intention is to simply lay out the essential role of emotions in the magical process. In this regard, successful magic is heightened when we remember that the emotional body is an instrument used by the soul in support of its efforts to manifest its divine ideations. We must learn to wisely use the emotional body, rather than being used by it.

 

 

 

 

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Unanimity 

~ A Hallmark Principle of the Dawning Age ~

 

As humanity gradually enters into the Aquarian Era, a variety of laws and principles become increasingly operative within an individual’s life.   Such things as the Principle of Goodwill, the Law of Attraction, and the Principle of Right Human Relations, are just a few of the many spiritual dictums that will become increasingly influential within one’s perceptions and patterns of living. This is particularly true for those who have awoken to the soul within. These governing principles will have a profound evolutionary effect upon human consciousness over the next several centuries.   Yet of the many emerging precepts likely to unfold, it is the Principle of Unanimity that will, perhaps, have the greatest effect upon the collective consciousness of humanity.

One of the hallmarks of the Aquarian Age is its emphasis on unitive consciousness and group endeavor. Yet spiritually based collaborations can only truly exist if the Principle of Unanimity is having a shaping effect upon the minds and hearts of those involved. This not only suggests that group members recognize their commonality of interest, but that they palpably sense the sacred soul within each other. Collaborative initiatives are usually driven by common purpose, which is well and good. However, when a feeling of soulful unity is likewise felt, then group work (on behalf of the inner ashram) can truly commence.

As with all spiritual principles, the impurities of human form can have a distorting effect upon them. Given this, the most common distortion of unanimity is uniformity. The root of unanimity is the word “anima” which is synonymous with soul. Unanimity can therefore be defined as unity of soul, while uniformity represents unity of form. When viewed individually, a rigidly held insistence as to how things must be done is an indication that this aberration is occurring. Societally considered, such distortion can be recognized in the manifestation of totalitarian regimes, inflexible adherence to historical tradition, or legislative tendencies that are repressive and gratuitously restrictive.

The Principle of Unanimity is one that will help humanity to slowly and surely realize its oneness. In truth, the awakening of this sacred principle can be recognized in our capacity to see ourselves, not just as one in kind, but as one in essence. And, it is this that is the hope of the future for the human kingdom. For only through our ability to inwardly feel ourselves as united souls will we begin to rightly shape our actions in support of humanity’s collective betterment.

 

 

 

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Leo

~ Discerning the Double Lion ~

 

Leo is the zodiacal force most associated with the question of identity and the search for the self. It tends to condition human consciousness with a yearning to discover who we individually are. The desire for self-realization has relevance to all zodiacal signs, but none more so than the Sign of the Lion. The lion is the symbol of the self, and the importance of living from the place of personal power and self-confidence. Yet it is not often recognized that there are two lions related to the sign of Leo, not one. And, it is in the rightful discernment of the one from the other that true progress upon the Path is made possible.

It must be remembered that the self is essentially dual, and this is what is meant by the double lion. There is the self as personality, as well as the Self as soul. The great challenge of the Leo individual is to discern the difference within, and strive to identify with the higher lion (soul) while taming the unbridled and selfish tendencies of the lower lion (personality). This is not an easy task for any of us (whether born in Leo or not), in that ahamkara is a subtle power within each of us. Ahamkara (also called the egoic principle) represents the tendency to self-reference. Either overt or subtle, it is the attitude of I-ness and it has a shaping effect on our perceptions and actions. Though relevant within every human being, it is particularly accented in the Leo personality.

Herein is found a clue to the distinction between the lower and higher lions.   The lower lion stands in his or her personal power, is usually egotistical (though sometimes well disguised), and often yearns to be the center of attention.   The higher lion also stands in power and integrity, but without the need for accolades or recognition from the outside world. When one can meditatively find his or her inner center and spiritual identity, the higher lion then comes into view. When this occurs, the inclination toward ego inflation or self-aggrandizement begins to vanish. The lower lion becomes placid and tamed, while the higher lion stands firmly centered and altruistically oriented. In short, the lower lion is self-centered, which the higher lion is centered in the Self.

 

 

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Service

~ A Point of Clarification ~

Service to humanity is the hallmark of life when the soul is sensed deep within. Experienced as an inner call or prompting, availing oneself in service is an inescapable necessity when walking the spiritual path. This is particularly true as the personality (ego) becomes increasingly infused with the soul’s uplifting urge. However, it is important that we understand the meaning of service (as conveyed in the Esoteric Philosophy), for there is a misconception about it that is worthy of our consideration.

Often we think that service is an activity, or an outward action of sorts. Though this is an understandable perspective, it nonetheless puts the cart before the horse, so to speak. Too often we believe that the basis of service involves an act of doing, yet it is actually rooted in the Principle of Being. To BE the soul is to attitudinally imbue a sense of service and upliftment into every dimension of day-to-day life. In the truest sense, soulful service is not a function of doing, but rather of being. It is to hold an inner alignment with the soul then allow the personality to spontaneously respond to its wise perspective. When it comes to the question of service, doing is therefore best understood as an effect that arises out of being. Spiritually considered, it is crucial that a sense of soulful being precede doing.

Why this distinction is important has to do with motivation. When seeing suffering in the world, it will invoke measures of emotional tension and discomfort within us, thus motivating us to give remedy to that particular need. When the alignment with the beingness of the soul is present, then such interventions will surely be wholesome and uplifting. Yet when the personality is operating on its own, the hidden motive behind service is to alleviate the emotional discomfort we feel. As such, the hidden motive is unwholesome, in that its purpose is to assuage us from the emotional pain or angst that we feel. When rendering service, assessing our true motives is therefore well advised.

 

 

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The Point of Light Emerges

~ A Series on White Magic ~

As mentioned in an earlier post, inherent within the soul is a desire to creatively serve. Essentially, it is an urge to generate creative ideations within the human mind—as an initial step toward the manifestation of that which will uplift. To be successful, the personality (ego) must be meditatively oriented toward the soul and its intuitive gaze. When such is the case, right alignment and creative readiness has been established, and a point of light then emerges within the personality’s receptive mind. The soul’s magical endeavor thus begins.

Faintly flickering within the mind of the magician, the point of light is not yet a thought. Rather, it is best understood, not as an actual light, but as the intuitive seed of a thought to be. It is the matrix from which a soul inspired idea is given birth within the disciple’s mind. If consciously experienced (most often it isn’t), this intuitive light is recognized as something vague and nebulous and inwardly churning, yet at the same time there are no words to describe it. And, it is from this that a new and progressive thoughtform will eventually emerge.

In the esoteric literature we are given to understand that the point of light has certain qualities associated with it. Specifically, it irradiates the mind with a note, a color or a unique vibration. Living mental substance (mental elementals) is then magnetically attracted to these qualities—drawn toward the point of light like moths to a flame. They then begin to build an edifice of substance around its glowing warmth. In this way, the elementals give form to the soul’s formless intuitive seed. A thoughtform is thus born. Indeed, as understood in the Esoteric Philosophy, a thoughtform is an assemblage of a myriad of little lives (mental elementals) that come together in cooperative rapport to create a thoughtform within the mind. Not surprisingly, it is for this reason that white magic has sometimes been called the Art of Thoughtform Building.

 

 

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Glamour

~ The Enemy of the Soul ~

 

Service to humanity is the hallmark of life when the soul is sensed deep within. Experienced as an inner call or prompting, availing oneself in service is an inescapable necessity when walking the spiritual path. This is particularly true as the personality (ego) becomes increasingly infused with the soul’s uplifting urge. However, it is important that we understand the meaning of service (as conveyed in the Esoteric Philosophy), for there is a misconception about it that is worthy of our consideration.

Often we think that service is an activity, or an outward action of sorts. Though this is an understandable perspective, it nonetheless puts the cart before the horse, so to speak. Too often we believe that the basis of service involves an act of doing, yet it is actually rooted in the Principle of Being. To BE the soul is to attitudinally imbue a sense of service and upliftment into every dimension of day-to-day life. In the truest sense, soulful service is not a function of doing, but rather of being. It is to hold an inner alignment with the soul then allow the personality to spontaneously respond to its wise perspective. When it comes to the question of service, doing is therefore best understood as an effect that arises out of being. Spiritually considered, it is crucial that a sense of soulful being precede doing.

Why this distinction is important has to do with motivation. When seeing suffering in the world, it will invoke measures of emotional tension and discomfort within us, thus motivating us to give remedy to that particular need. When the alignment with the beingness of the soul is present, then such interventions will surely be wholesome and uplifting. Yet when the personality is operating on its own, the hidden motive behind service is to alleviate the emotional discomfort we feel. As such, the hidden motive is unwholesome, in that its purpose is to assuage us from the emotional pain or angst that we feel. When rendering service, assessing our true motives is therefore well advised.

 

 

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The Three Pillars

It has been said that there is no stronger form than an equilateral triangle. Though normally viewed physically, this also has profound application when considering the spiritual dimension of life. There are many triplicities that contribute to our spiritual growth and development. Yet, none are more essential to human evolution than that of Meditation–Study–Service. Sometimes called The Three Pillars, they are the means that will lead each of us toward the gate of enlightenment and its accompanying joy.

As the first pillar, meditation is the means to transcend personality consciousness, and to thereby discover a dimension of existence beyond form. It serves another purpose as well, in that it is the technique, par excellence, for supporting the soul’s creative agenda. Inherent in the soul’s nature is a desire to seed the mind with new and progressive thoughtforms that have the power to uplift. Please keep in mind—the soul’s influence is subtle, in that it speaks by way of faint intuitive whispers. Yet when rightly practiced, meditation helps refine human consciousness with a heightened sensitivity to these whispers.

The reason study is consider one of the three stalwart pillars, is that it pertains to the development of the higher mind. Though most of society’s educational systems can assist people in the growth of lower mind (concrete mind), they do little to help in the maturation of one’s higher mental faculties (abstract mind). The higher mind is the layer of consciousness where broadly patterned ideas and truths are realized. For most of us, this is a dimension of consciousness in need of further development. Given the fact that the causal body (vehicle for soul consciousness) is located on the higher mental plane, it is not surprising that the cultivation of abstract thought is essential. To think abstractly is to internally position oneself in the neighborhood of the soul.

The final pillar is that of service. We are given to understand that the nature of the soul is to serve in support of humanity’s betterment. Indeed, this is a primary impulse governing the soul’s creative urge. Commitment to heartfelt service greatly assists in the alignment of the personality with the soul. It has been said that, of the three pillars, service is the most important, particularly when it is performed with selfless intent.

 

 

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Pisces

~ The Sign of the Saving Force ~

 

Pisces is the zodiacal sign through which the compassionate nature of the One Life (God) finds its greatest outlet of expression. As the conveyor of pristine love, Pisces is a wellspring of empathetic warmth. To those for whom its energy holds sway, it conditions the heart with a profound sensitivity to the sufferings found within society. From this emerges a compelling urge to find remedy to such pain. Indeed, the spiritual call of the Piscean disciple is often to bring love and light into dark places—those societal circumstances where human despair, helplessness and hopelessness reign. It is therefore no wonder that Pisces has sometimes been called the Sign of the Saving Force.

When viewed through the lens of Esotericism, love is a living energy that is qualitatively different according to the sign it radiates through. For example, in Cancer it reveals itself as the urge to nurture, while in Libra it is best recognized as harmonizing love. Yet, in Pisces, this divine energy most often reveals itself as sacrificial love. The Piscean disciple will normally have a deep and profound love for humanity and will sacrifice much of his or her personal needs in order to lend aid, particularly on behalf of those most victimized by the imperfections of human civilization. They therefore commit their lives to providing lovely assistance to those entrapped within humanity’s underbelly and its plight.

Because humanity is in the transitional period between Pisces and the dawn of the Aquarian Age, some will say that Piscean consciousness must now give way. Though there is a measure of truth to this notion, it is wayward to be overly sweeping in this claim. It is true that Aquarius could herald the emergence of a golden age, but only if the best and highest expressions of Pisces are integrated into it. The mental development cultivated by Aquarius must be fused with the saving force that Pisces has given to us. Sadly, if such is not the case, the Aquarian Age will merely be synonymous with a dark age.

 

 

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Aquarius

 
~ Conveyor of Universality ~

 

As a force that subtly shapes human consciousness, Aquarius brings the perception of humanity’s oneness to those most receptive to its influence. Commonly, this zodiacal force is believed to foster the development of group consciousness, which is most certainly true. Yet it is not only in the context of human groupings that this applies. Aquarius helps us to recognize that all forms of life on Earth are inwardly united. In this light, Aquarius is not only the sign that gives nurturance to group awareness, as its greater mission is to convey the Principle of Universality.

It must be realized that the oneness Aquarius cultivates is not based upon the simple notion that humanity is one in kind. In truth, it is a more profound notion than this. Instead Aquarius promotes a subtle recognition that we are one in essence. The Soul of the World (anima mundi) is deeply felt through the gifts of Aquarius, and it is this that shapes the perceptions of those under the Water Bearer’s purview. It is a deeply felt oneness, based not upon our sameness, but through the richness found in the variability of life. Oneness through diversity is indeed the clarion call that Aquarius sounds forth.

Given the fact that humanity is slowly moving into the Age of Aquarius, it is true to say that each of us can be enriched by this zodiacal light. As a whole, humanity is facing unparalleled challenges, and crises are found in every quarter of the planet. Yet when we closely consider the global issues we face, it can be seen that underlying it all is a calling for humanity to truly be one—both with itself and with all of the other kingdoms in nature. Again, it is through an honoring of diversity that true oneness can emerge. We are therefore blessed in the knowledge that the astrological sign related to this is on our horizon. Needless to say, such synchronicities are never accidental.

 

 

Image of an Antahkarana, as depicted by Francis Donald

Antahkarana, by Francis Donald

 

Antahkarana

– The Three Threads –

In a previous post we discussed the nature of the Antahkarana and its role within human consciousness. As a bridge of substance that spans the gap between the higher and lower divisions of consciousness, it is something that is slowly developed and built over the course of many incarnations. Yet it is important to understand that the Antahkarana has a fundamental triplicity to its constitution, and it is this that I would like to address.

The Antahkarana is composed of three strands of substance, and each plays an essential role in leading us to the threshold of enlightened awareness. The first is called the consciousness thread, and it anchors itself in the center of the etheric head in the region of the pineal gland. This thread is the inner structure that facilitates the experience of consciousness itself, and has two divisions to it—a lower and a higher. The lower is the section of the thread that is built through the day-to-day experiences of the personality, while the higher division is constructed of subtler mental substance and only begins to be built when one is consciously and meditatively committed to the Path.

The second essential filament of the Antahkarana is called the life thread (also called the sutratma). Essentially, this thread is the conveyer of the Life Principle and it finds its terminus in the human heart chakra. Through it travels Life Itself.

Unlike the other filaments, the life thread doesn’t need to be developed. When in incarnation, it is always present. This thread carries the animating force behind every thought, feeling and physical activity or sensation. Biblically it is referred to as the silver cord, and when it is withdrawn death is an inevitable effect.

The creative thread is the last to be mentioned, and it finds its anchor point in the human throat chakra. Through it, the soul’s creative ideations find their outlet of expression. Increasingly, this strand of the Antahkarana is built and used as an individual develops his/her sensitivity to the soul’s creative intention. When all three threads are completely constructed, enlightenment is then at hand.

 

 

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Capricorn

~ The Dual Mountains of Human Life ~

Capricorn is the astrological sign that initiates humanity into each calendar year. As an earth sign, it encourages us to give grounded expression to the wisest aspects of ourselves. Remarkably, it is a zodiacal force that also impulses us to inwardly reach toward the subtle and lofty dimensions of awareness—the apex of consciousness. Capricorn is therefore a paradoxical sign. It emphasizes both the heights and the depths of human existence. It impels us to live a practical outer life while simultaneously holding an elevated state of consciousness.

Capricorn is symbolized by a mountain upon which a goat arduously climbs. Yet it is important to realize that there are two mountains pertaining to Capricorn, not just one. The mountain most emphasized in traditional astrology is referred to as the Mount of Ambition. When climbing it, personality motivation is the force that guides one’s outer life. Indeed, this is at the heart of many of the traditional astrological perspectives and assumptions about Capricorn. Essentially it is the mountain that shapes and influences those who have not yet awakened to the soul and its lofty promptings.

However, to the disciple it is the other mountain that he or she must ascend. Called the Mount of Spirit, it represents the mountain of consciousness. When on the Path, each of us is inwardly trying to climb an inner mountain, in that we are striving to polarize our consciousness at a subtler and wiser perch, deep within. This is the influential effect that Capricorn has in the life of the disciple. It emphasizes the essential need to live a grounded spiritual life while simultaneously extending ourselves to the mountaintop of consciousness—the place whereon form comes to an end and spiritual liberation is sure reward.

 

 

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The First Initiation 

~ Assuming the Burden of the Future ~

 

Having completed the long journey upon the probationary path, the aspirant has come to a place of readiness for the first initiation. As the first of five, it is said that this initial initiation is as monumental to the soul’s journey as when humankind began to rise out of the animal kingdom millions of years ago. It demarks a time when a human being takes the first of several initiatory steps into the fifth kingdom in nature—the Kingdom of the Soul. Though full entrance will not occur until the fourth initiation, it nonetheless denotes that the aspirant has come to a place of initial readiness to move toward this stupendous transition.

 

There are essentially two characteristics giving evidence that an individual has entered the antechamber to the first initiation. The first is that his/her heart has widened enormously. A deep and abiding love of humanity has become an experiential fact within consciousness. It is therefore no wonder that the ancient esoteric literature refers to this initiation as The Birth of the Christ within the Heart, for the soul is a natural carrier of the Christ Principle (love). Because the heart has swelled to embrace the whole of humanity, such a person feels a strong desire to render service in support of its advancement. He or she begins to assume the burden of the future, in that there is a sense of taking responsibility to contributing to humanity’s betterment, and this with a multi-generational perspective in mind.

 

Each initiation not only gives indication that a major expansion of consciousness has been achieved, but that the soul has demonstrated a measure of mastery over the lower self—the personality. In the case of the first initiation, it is the physical dimension that the soul has taken dominion over. No longer do the independent appetites of the physical body hold undue sway. The soul is now able to effectively be the observer of the cravings of the physical body, and through detached observation can demonstrate regulatory oversight over them. As a consequence, the physical body becomes increasingly subservient to the soul’s intention. This is the goal and hallmark of the first initiation.

 

 

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The Second Initiation 

~ Rising above One’s Cherished Ideals ~

 

Many incarnations pass between the first and second initiations. It is a period when the disciple feels inwardly called to spiritually render service to humanity, though certainty as to the soul’s purpose is only partially sensed. Nonetheless, the fullness of his/her commitment to soulfully live and serve continues to mount. During this period, much of the developmental work is directed toward transforming the emotional body so that it can rightly support the creative intention of the soul.

The second initiation is considered one of the most arduous and difficult. Much of the challenge pertains to the question of emotional desire and its directive power in the disciple’s life. There is a growing recognition that one’s desires have become psychological barriers that have a distorting effect upon the soul’s downward gaze. This pertains to all personality desire, though particularly those associated with one’s cherished ideals. In their own right, ideals are sacred. Yet, when a strong emotional investment accompanies them, our prized ideals become a hindrance. The solution always involves detachment from such desires, but without an ounce of repression in the process. Rather than pushing away the personality’s desirous urges they must be transformed into spiritual will.

Essentially, the second initiation requires that the soul become masterful of the watery sheath of the personality—the emotional body. Viewed metaphorically, at this initiation the disciple must be able to “walk on water.” That is to say that the candidate must demonstrate the capacity to inwardly hold him/herself above the watery dimension of the personality (emotional body) and no longer drown within it. When this is the case, the indwelling-self (soul) then has the ability to use emotion and no longer be used by it. The second initiation does not give rise to this ability, but is the consequence of it. Initiation marks a point of attainment but does not bring it about.

 

 

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The Third Initiation

~ Entrance into Initiate Life ~

 

The fusion of the soul and personality earns one the right to enter through the third initiatory gate. Occultly called the Transfiguration, this initiation is a significant milestone on the long journey toward enlightenment. It indicates that the mind is now free from the subtlety of illusory thought, and that the soul is able to express its creative intention without personality encumberment. After countless incarnations the personality fully and finally understands its reason for being—to act as an outer garment through which the soul can express its divine intention. And it is because of this that one’s capacity to render uplifting service to human betterment increases tremendously.

The third initiation is a rite of passage that admits one into an entirely new realm of spiritual awareness and understanding. The so-called “heresy of separateness” finally comes to an end, and the Monad becomes a consciously sensed reality for the first time. It is a glimpse of Life beyond the soul and the promise of a future state of perfected being. Because of this, the transfigured disciple is given a new title, the initiate. For such an individual has been initiated into the regime of Life—an inner domain that extends beyond the soul into the realm of pure spirit.

Because the higher and lower selves are now fused as one, the initiate is given unimpeded insight as to his/her spiritual role within the Ashram. In truth, prior to initiate life, certainty of the soul’s purpose is tentative at best. As long as there are dimensions of the personality still unredeemed by the soul, there will always be a measure of distorted perception in this regard. Yet the Transfiguration indicates that this is no longer so, for the personality is now completely subservient to the soul’s directive gaze, and clarity of purpose then shines forth unencumbered.

 


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The Fourth Initiation

~ Enlightenment and the Great Renunciation ~

 

The Fourth Initiation marks a moment of spiritual triumph. When considering the countless incarnations that an individual will live, this initiatory opportunity can only occur when all personally generated karma has been fully redeemed. The necessity of returning to incarnated life then finally ends and enlightenment is thus achieved.

Broadly considered, karma represents dissonant vibration held by the soul and stored within the causal body. Because of its presence, it inevitably forces the individual to return to incarnate life. Yet at the Fourth Initiation karmic dissonance no longer remains, for it has been entirely transformed and harmonized. Freedom from incarnation is then the soul’s sure reward.

The keynote of all initiations is renunciation. At the first initiation the disciple renounces his/her attachment to the powerful urges of the physical body; at the second, the desires of the emotion vehicle give way; and at the third the ungoverned aspects of the mind are forfeited through mental mastery. Yet when compared to the Fourth Initiation, these relinquishments are considered merely preparatory. For it is at this initiation that the causal body itself is repudiated. It is no wonder, therefore, that this initiation has been called the Great Renunciation.

Given this, it may well be asked—why would the causal body, which has acted as the storehouse of wisdom for countless lives, be destroyed? The answer to this mystifying question is found when we consider the evolutionary developments taking place as the Fourth Initiation is approached. During this time, the wisdom contained within the causal body is rapidly being synthesized into the fabric of the initiate’s beingness. Because of this, the container that has historically held the soul’s wisdom (causal body) is no longer needed. The wisdom it stored is now a part of his/her divine essence, and will be so for eternity.

 

 

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The Probationary Path

~Becoming a Useful Instrument to the Soul ~

 

There comes a time in the long evolutionary journey when an individual awakens to the faint promptings of the soul. This is a stupendous moment in the soul’s evolutionary trek, in that internally the personality is introduced to the soul for the first time. Because of this, he or she is no longer exclusively reliant on faith as the foundation for spiritual living. Now an experiential aspect of the divine has been inwardly felt and, from that point forward, life will never be the same.

The awakening marks the beginning of the Probationary Path, and is a crucial segment when on the journey to enlightenment. Though with some variability, it is a period that quite often will continue for a few incarnations. The function of the probationary path is primarily to develop the personality into a fit and useful instrument through which the soul can creatively express itself. It is a period where there emerges a growing commitment to know thyself, build good character, and to transform the unwholesome tendencies of the personality.

It is no wonder, therefore, that the probationary path has also been called the Path of Purification. The individual walking upon it will often become preoccupied with purifying the physical body by adopting comparatively strict dietary habits and/or committing to a serious physical fitness regime, sometimes fanatically so. All of this is based on a growing belief (consciously or unconsciously realized) that the physical body is the temple of the lord (soul) and that it must be treated as such. At this point of spiritual development, the physical dimension of life is central to the aspirant’s view toward spiritual development. Yet, as the individual approaches the end of the probationary journey this perspective widens into an understanding that the emotional and mental bodies likewise act as the abode of the soul, and are therefore part of the lord’s temple as well.

The probationary path is consummated at the First Initiation, which marks the time when the soul is then able to infuse itself into the physical body. This I will discuss in the next blog entry. For now realize that the probationary path is best understood as preparatory, and will eventually lead the aspirant onto the Path of Discipleship and the initiations that accompany it.

 

thepath

 
The Path

~ An Outer Reflection of an Inner Condition ~

  

For those who seek to live a spiritually meaningful life, a passionate yearning to understand the Path often becomes a centerpiece of interest. What is the Path, and how does it become known to us? These are essential questions for those learning to be disciples of their own souls, and yet the answers are not easily found. Too often we are inclined to see the spiritual Path as a trajectory of defined and recognizable service in the outer world. Yet in truth, this is not the Path, but instead is an effect that arises from it.

It has been said that to find the path one must become the path. Herein is a profoundly important principle to live by. It suggests that the true path is internal, and that the path of being must be traveled as a prerequisite to the outer path of doing. Essentially the truest and highest goal or purpose for any of us is to inwardly lift the sense of self to a deeper and higher dimension of ourselves. It is to draw one’s sense of identity into that soulfully wise place, deep within. This is what is meant by the notion of becoming the path.

What then is the relationship between this inner Path and the outer path of purposeful service? The answer comes when we realize that the more we internally hold ourselves at the level of the soul, the more the world begins to shape circumstance to reveal the outer path to follow. When we can hold ourselves at the heights of consciousness, doors begin to open that we didn’t realize existed and needed people come into our lives at precisely the right time. Most often it is through such synchronicities that the outer way comes into view. The external path is therefore not something to strive toward. Instead, it finds you through the circumstantial messages it conveys. It does this, not in its fullness, but only as an indication of the next step to be taken. The outer way must not, therefore, be perceived as a destination but as an unfolding revelation over time.

The outer path is simply a reflection of the state of consciousness that naturally arises when the inner Path is faithfully followed and held. This requires that you strive to be the highest and wisest aspect of yourself. And, when this inner alignment can be held with a measure of constancy, the outer path unfolds as a natural reflection and directional beacon to be followed.

 

 

 

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The Inner Ashram

~ The Eternal Home of the Soul ~

Traditionally, an ashram is viewed as a religious retreat where people gather for spiritual enrichment whilst among likeminded seekers. Within the nomenclature of the Esoteric Philosophy this term is used as well, yet connotes something quite different. Though it is true that an ashram is a place of spiritual guidance and support, esotericism doesn’t define it as having an external location. Instead, it is understood as a subjective place found deep within. Located beyond the realms of higher consciousness, the ashram is the place from which one’s soul comes forth. In this light, the ashram is best understood as the eternal abode of the soul.

As noted in my previous writings, there are seven type of souls existing within the human family. And, because every human soul emerges from an ashram, there are predictably seven great ashrams found within the inner realms. It is the ashram that is the source of one’s spiritual calling and purpose. Wise it is to remember, therefore, that the role of the soul is to act as an outer agent on behalf of the purpose of the ashram. In short, its purpose is your purpose.


The Three Aspects


The Sacred Trinity

As many world religions proclaim, behind all that exists is found a triplicity of sacred energies, and each is considered a dimension of the divine.  We see this espoused in the Christian faith with its emphasis on the holy trinity, while in Hinduism the same notion is embraced via three fundamental deities—Shiva-Vishnu-Brahma. Yet a more generic description is used to describe this sacred trinity within esoteric nomenclature.  Called the Three Aspects, these energies are understood as living states of consciousness (divine and human) and pertain to the energies of Will-Love-Intelligence.  They represent the three primary qualities of life that emerge from the One Life and are imbued (in differing proportions) within all things.

First Aspect – Will
 (Corresponding to the Father and Shiva)

Will is the initiating energy within creation.  It is the purposeful force behind the One Life as it manifests in and as cosmos.  Stepped down to the mundane level of human existence, the first aspect is the energy behind the willful nature of the personality as it selfishly initiates activity in support of its ambitions.  Yet on a higher level it emerges as the purposeful promptings of the soul as it seeks to initiate actions that have uplifting effect upon others.

Second Aspect – Love 
(Corresponding to the Son and Vishnu)

Love is the unitive force in creation and is governed by the Law of Attraction.  Cosmically considered, it is the force that ensures that all things are sensed as a part of a living singularity—the One Life.  On a human level, the second aspect arises in the personality as desire and/or the experience of personal love.  At the level of the soul it is recognized as a feeling of impersonal love for humanity, and a desire to express that love as a function of service.

Third Aspect – Intelligence
 (Corresponding to the Holy Spirit and Brahma)

Universally considered, intelligence represents the knowingness of the One Life and is found at the core of all things….large or small.  Within the human domain, the third aspect manifests as the intelligence of the personality as it seeks to manipulate thoughts, feelings and outer circumstance in support of its egotistical agenda.  When working through the soul, the third aspect provides the disciple with the knowledge that supports intelligent activity in service to human betterment.

Discernment of the three aspects is an important skill to be developed as we journey along the spiritual path. This involves learning to witness this sacred trinity playing out within the circumstances of our lives, as well as the dynamic nature of our thoughts and perceptions. To know the three aspects, in the truest sense, requires that we each discover them within the immediacy of our inner and outer lives.


1st aspect

The Initiating Will

~ The First Aspect ~

 

The first aspect is equivalent to the Father Principle, but should not be understood as primary because it is first. All three aspects are equal, though their effects in the world are quite different. The first aspect gives impulse to action, and is therefore related to the experience of will and purpose. It is the driving force behind creation, and is the energy that propels all things into existence. This dimension of divinity is dynamic and forceful, and has application at every level of creation.

When you decide to get a project moving, for example, this is indication that you are wielding the first aspect. Though its expression may be either wise or ill-considered, it is nonetheless the first aspect in action. Every one of us utilizes the first aspect within the day-to-day fabric of our lives. It is what gives rise to the motivational urge within us. In an animal, it is the energy behind the survival instinct, and in the plant kingdom the first aspect can be seen in the persistence of its perennials.

At the level of the human soul, it is the first aspect that initiated the urge to return to physical form to begin an incarnational journey in support of continued evolution toward enlightenment. Conversely, this same energy also facilitates the soul’s withdrawal from the body at the time of death—and is thus expressed as the “will to abstract”.

When walking the spiritual Path, an alert attitude to the three aspects can be quite fruitful. Such a discipline can provide much insight into the nature of consciousness as well as the experience of outer events. Even within one’s thought life we see the first, second and third aspects operative. The first aspect is the thinker, and this engages the second aspect, thinking, and the resultant effect is an intelligent thought—the third aspect.


The Unitive Power in Creation


~ The Second Aspect ~


All that exists is the One Life manifesting as the many. At its most fundamental level, the second aspect represents the ancient memory of this all-embracing oneness. Whether considering a beautiful pine tree imbued with consciousness, a human being striving toward enlightenment, or the entity that ensouls the Earth itself, all units of life contain within them the memory of the original condition of oneness. Importantly, it is not oneness itself to which the second aspect holds claim, but the residual vibration of that oneness as it pervasively infuses the fabric of creation.

The second aspect prompts life toward increasing states of unity—which it why it is associated with love and the cooperative urge. It bridges and unifies spirit with matter, purpose with activity, and Life to outer appearance. Indeed, if there were one word that best conveys the essence of the second aspect it would be the word relationship. Always the second aspect facilitates the relationship between things, human or otherwise. We witness its presence in the romantic dance between men and women, the legislative relationship between a society and its citizenry, and the loving exchange between a flower and the bee gathering its nectar. Essentially, the second aspect is the relational force between all things.

This sacred energy provides sentiency to our human experience—in that it acts as the divine matrix from which the human soul arises. For the soul emerges through the unitive interplay between the monad (spirit) and personality (form). This is why the human soul is often called the middle principle. It is the bridge between the god within us (monad, first aspect) and the outer realms of thought, feeling and physical sensation (personality, third aspect). In truth, a Master of Wisdom is one who is fully conscious of the three aspects playing out within his/her consciousness—and this, without waiver. For the disciple, attention to the three aspects is therefore well advised.

 

 

3rd aspect

 

The Manifestation of Intelligent Activity

~ The Third Aspect ~


When viewing the appearance of things, it is the third aspect that is beheld. This divine energy produces the outer garment of creation. In the broadest sense, it is the intelligence behind the design of the universe. Yet on a minute level, it is the intelligence inherent in every atom of substance contained within the universe. Essentially, the third aspect is the knowingness of the One Life imbued within (and as) the substance of creation.

The third aspect is therefore most associated with form. When, for example, we contemplate the full extension of a human being (monad, soul and personality) the personality is the rightful representative of the third aspect. However, when narrowing our gaze to exclusively focus on the threefold personality (mental, emotional and physical) the physical body then holds that title. Given this, when learning to recognize the three aspects it is crucial that it be contextually framed.

The third aspect is present in all that we do in our lives. It governs the generation of thoughts within the mind; it is the dynamic energy behind our emotions; and it is the genetic information contained within every cell of the body. And, beyond this, the third aspect is the coordinating intelligence behind all of our actions. So much of day-to-day life is shaped and conditioned by this aspect of the holy trinity.

We would all do well to be more alert to this innate intelligence as it arises within the immediacy of our lives. By so doing, we can begin to more effectively blend the second and third aspects within. This is the basis of soul/personality fusion, and is a function of walking the path to enlightenment. It is to fuse the love of the soul (second aspect) with the intelligent substance that gives form to the personality (third aspect).

 

Dark Night of the Soul

 

A Misnomer and Friend

 

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The Dark Night of the Soul (DNS) is an experience that spiritually minded people know well.  We all have had periods when we feel spiritually bereft of God’s countenance and grace.   As a notion first put forward in the 16th century by St. John of the Cross, the DNS causes us to feel abandoned by the Greater Life that has previously given us inspiration and guidance.  Essentially, the cause of the DNS stems from the inherent battle waged between the demands of the personality and the higher prompting of the soul.  Given this understanding, there are only two conditions where freedom from the DNS can occur—either when one is a young soul and not yet on the Path, or someone who has reached true enlightenment.  Indeed, it is part and parcel of life consciously evolving through the human domain.

 

It is interesting to realize that the common view of the DNS is a bit of a misnomer.  With one exception (the fourth initiation), it is actually not something experienced by the soul.  The soul isn’t feeling spiritually forsaken, but instead it is the lower self, the personality that suffers in this way.   Indeed, most often it is the soul that imposes the blindness upon the personality, not as punishment, but as a test. It is a burning ground of uncertainty and adjustment.  The DNS frequently comes forth in order to arrest the hastening personality.  Every step upon the Path must be earned through the crucible of personality crisis and consequential change.  The DNS forces the personality to face an aspect of itself in need of transformation.  Given this, it is more appropriate to called it a dark night of the personality experience.

 

When walking the Path, it is wise to view the DNS as a developmental friend, rather than foe.  It facilitates an unfolding of consciousness through an undoing, and is built into the fabric of the journey itself.  Whether considering the crisis period experienced by Jesus in the Garden of Gethsemane, Prometheus chained to a rock, or the isolative and brooding experience of the Buddha under the Bodhi Tree, all of us will experience the DNS, many times over.  As such, when those moments of spiritual darkness and doubt seem to invade the mind, remember that you are in good company, and that “this too shall pass.”

 

 

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The Downward Gazing Soul

Meditation is an essential discipline as one strives to spiritualize his or her consciousness. Adopting a meditative regime facilitates the alignment of the ego (personality) with the directive promptings of the soul. Over time, such a practice orients the personality so that it can rightly register the soul’s intuitive whispers as they softly crest upon the shores of the human mind. Rhythmically applying a meditation practice in one’s life is therefore well advised. Yet it is often not realized that, quite separate from one’s daily meditative practice, the soul itself is in meditation deep throughout the entire incarnation.

As a layer of consciousness evolving over aeons of time, the soul is developing its capacity to meditate, and does so in three directions. There are times when it is meditating upwards and by so doing develops rapport with the greater life within which it is a mere cell. At other times its meditation is horizontally engaged upon the plane of abstract mind. In this way, it reaffirms its relationship with the inner group(s) to which it has purposeful and/or karmic affiliation.  Still, on other occasions, the soul’s meditative attention descends toward the personality.  These represent the moments when the soul is attempting to inspire the personality with creative ideations that have the power to uplift. This is often referred to as the downward gazing soul.

To be prized are those moments when one’s outer meditations coincide with the soul’s downward gaze. Such times represent a creative opportunity between the higher and lower aspects of consciousness, for the soul is downwardly focused while the personality is vertically aligned and acutely receptive. Truly, these are moments of magical opportunity. Though such synchronized alignments occur rarely, their frequency increases proportionately as consciousness evolves and one’s outer meditation practice deepens. In this regard, consistency of effort will most certainly yield sure results.

Aries

– The Will to Initiate –
As the first sign of the zodiac, Aries is the astrological force that supports the beginning of all things.  It inclines the disciple, born under its influence, to sense the new paradigms on humanity’s horizon, and become a driving force in support of their manifestation into the outer world.  Such people naturally have a pioneering spirit, and recognize that to give form to new and progressive ideas facilitates the next step in humanity’s evolution.
Invariably, every sign of the zodiac seeks to influence evolutionary change within human consciousness.  For instance, the developmental challenge offered by Aries centers around the type of energy used when seeking to propel new ideas toward manifestation.  Prior to stepping onto the Path, the force of emotional passion is the energy primarily used in this regard.  Mars is the traditional ruler of this sign and, as such, its passionate influence is the most natural and comfortable fuel used to assert a newly conceived idea.  Yet with this comes risk, for when such is the case there emerges a tendency to blindly rush forward causing undue disruption in the wake of the Arian individual’s creative assertions.  The remedy to this is Mercury.
Mercury is the more spiritual representative of Aries.  As its esoteric ruler, this sacred planet is the equivalent to Hermes, the messenger of the gods in Greek mythology.  When the Arian disciple is inwardly aligned with the soul, then Mercury conveys its intuitive gifts, thus shining the light of divine intelligence within the mind.  From this, the power inherent within these intuitive ideations becomes the propelling force that fuels their manifestation into form.  Thus, the blind and unregulated force of Mars is forfeited as the will of Mercury’s lighted wisdom takes its place.
No other zodiacal sign is more related to the magical process than is Aries.  With the help of Mercury as its agent, all progressive ideations find entrance into the human domain.  When considering the descriptive language of esotericism, it is not surprising therefore that Aries is said to give rise to the Will to Initiate.

 

The Soul’s Creative Urge 

Every human soul is destined to be a creative agent, for the evolution of consciousness demands that this be so.  Within each of us the soul yearns to express its inherent love and wisdom in support of the betterment of something. Indeed, this notion is central to its incarnational intention.  In the esoteric nomenclature, the soul’s creative urge is referred to as white magic.  And though every human being will eventually (in some incarnation) be magically effective, a wise and intelligent understanding of the process will be helpful when seeking to more effectively serve.
The soul’s creative work is considered top-down magic, in that it begins from a subtle place located at the apex of consciousness.  Here the soul sounds its creative note, and thus precipitates its intuitive wisdom downward into the receptive mind of the personality in hopes that it will take shape as a newly realized insight or progressive thoughtform.  If successful, this soul-inspired idea is then deliberately bathed in emotion so that it may be energized as a prelude to moving the idea into the outer world.  Finally, the art of externalizing this uplifting thoughtform commences with particular attention to the spiritual indicators that reveal right timing.
Given this, it’s not surprising that this creative process has also been called the Art of Thoughtform Building.  To appreciate the implications of this title bear in mind that the causal body (the container of the soul) is located on the higher mental plane.  As such, it has the ability to launch trends of intuitively inspired thoughts and innovative ideations that have the power to serve and uplift.  The soul speaks via intuitive whispers, and when rightly aligned, the mind of the lower-self (personality) will registered these intuitive promptings and build thoughts around them.  This is the foundation for the soul’s creative process.  It is to radiate its intuitional intention into the receptive mind as a preliminary step toward its externalization.
Yet as the soul downwardly directs its creative ideations, there are certain challenges along the way.  Often the personality will begin to subtly take ownership of the soul-inspired idea, and when this happens, distortion of the idea is sure to occur.  It is for this reason that one must be mindful of the entire process, and be alert to when the personality may unduly interfere.  These points of danger are well known.  In truth, the study of the magical art is as much a process of learning when personality interference is likely as it is to learn how to successful externalize the soul’s creative wisdom.
In future entries I will go into these points with greater detail and fullness.  For now, suffice it to say that this subject is central to living a meaningful spiritual life.  The destiny of the soul residing within each of us is to be creatively effective.  In truth, when the soul’s magical work is expressed with perfection, enlightenment is surely at hand.
  

The Cradle of Love

A Memory of the Original Condition of Oneness  
Whether considering the attraction we have toward those who are dear to us, the feelings we experience when offering aid to others, or the warmth that softly wells up when a baby grasps our hand, love manifests in many forms.  Yet what is this mysterious energy that can so powerfully sway us—urging us to rise above our separative tendencies so that we may feel the richness and joy of union? Esoterically understood, love is a living energy inherent in all things, and the memory of the original condition of Oneness is its cradle and source.
To fully appreciate this, it must be remembered that the entire universe is viewed as One Life (God) outwardly manifesting itself in (and as) cosmos—the One becoming the many.  Sometimes called the chain-of-life, the extension of Oneness into multiplicity is the reason for the seemingly infinite complexity and diversity of forms found on earth and throughout the universe.  Yet, inherent within every particulate form is seeded a subtle memory of the original unitive state.  Whether we are considering our planetary logos (the entity that ensouls the earth), a human being, a majestic redwood tree or even an atom of matter—all innately carry this vibrational memory.  In the highest and truest sense, this is love. It is a pervasive energy that underlies the warp and woof of Creation itself.
This universal energy is often referred to as a cosmic law—the Law of Attraction, and manifests itself in countless ways.  It is evidenced in the romantic allure that draws two people together, in the attraction a honey bee has to a flower as it gathers its sweet nectar, and in the desire of countries to cooperatively come together in the formation of the United Nations.  Each gives testament to this sacred law in action.  As the force holding us fast to the earth, even gravity is a manifestation of the Law of Attraction.  It too is therefore a demonstration of love.  When understanding the cradle of love in this way, it can truly be said that there is no place where love is not.
 

Monad

A Spark from the One Flame
Often it is believed that the consciousness of the soul is what we are striving to become. In many ways, this is true. The goal is to lift one’s perceptions to a loftier perch and, by so doing, become the consciousness of the higher-self—the soul. Yet this only pertains to human evolution. Once there is relative permanence in our capacity to hold consciousness at the level of the soul, a great initiation (the transfiguration) then occurs and entrance into a trans-human realm of evolution begins. Through this process, the monad (divine-self) is discovered, hidden behind the abode of the soul (causal body). What was thought to be one’s eternal sanctuary is then realized as merely a veil to be lifted….behind which the powerful radiance of the monad boldly comes into view.
The monad is a dimension of identity that is transcendent to all categories of consciousness, even the wisdom and love of the soul. And if the entire universe is the outer manifestation of the Fiery Will of God, as esotericism suggests, then the human monad can be best understood as a divine spark arising from this universal conflagration.
In truth, to live the life of the monad is the earned prerogative of an enlightened master. Nonetheless, as a structure of identity it secretly resides within the depths of each of us.  The monad represents our unrealized god-self, further accenting the notion that we are the divinity we seek. Unless enlightenment’s gate is near, the monad will not be seen, though one day it surely will be. For recognizing the monad, as a prelude to becoming it, is the abiding promise of the future.
 

The Dawn of Practical Mysticism

 Whether viewed from a spiritual or secular perspective, it is abundantly evident that humanity is in the throes of a major transition.  In every country and societal institution upheaval seems to be the order of the day, and with it much pain and suffering ensues.  This transitional period can be interpreted in a variety of ways. For some it is symptomatic of our movement from the Age of Pisces to that of Aquarius.  For those of Christian fundamentalist persuasion, the current plight of humanity gives fatalistic confirmation that the end-time draws near.  Yet in the eyes of the esotericist it is believed that we are witnessing the dawning of the Age of Practical Mysticism.
Historically, the mystical approach to God has been based upon a yearning heart and a belief in God transcendent.  Within this mindset, God is not discovered in the midst of societal activity, but in places of isolation from “the world, the flesh and the devil.”  In large measure, this is what has given birth to the Church’s long held bias toward a cloistered way of living, and the widespread existence of convents and monasteries.  The mystical way is one that rejects the sacredness of society, believing it to be a worldly distraction from establishing intimacy with the divine.
Conversely, practical mysticism recognizes that societal systems are spiritually alive.  And, just as with a human being, they too have a soul and a personality. Indeed the crises we now collectively face are rooted in a battle being waged between the soul and personality of our social institutions.  It is a clash between their higher and lower natures.  The physics governing the evolution of society is precisely the same as with an individual.  We (as well as society and its institutions) must each transform our lower nature so that it becomes a cooperative agent on behalf of the higher.  From the practical mystic’s point of view, this can only be done when we learn to inwardly reach for the stars while keeping our feet firmly grounded.
To be a practical mystic requires that we see all things as incrementally evolving from a lower to a higher order of existence.  This must be done by inwardly maintaining a mystical relationship to the divinity within, while simultaneously demonstrating a practical perspective when serving humanity.  Metaphorically speaking, escape into the safety of the forest will no longer suffice.  God is not simply understood as love (as the mystic maintains) but is recognized as a triune of purpose and love applied practically via intelligent activity.
  

Karma

The Law of Opportunity 
Often we think of karma as an evolutionary curse arising from wayward actions in the past.  As a result, it seems to limit our capacity to manifest the fullness of our spiritual potential within the fabric of daily living. Viewed in this way, karma surely has a binding effect. Yet, there is a less recognized aspect of karma that must not be overlooked. For within the circumstances of life, karma provides the necessary tension needed to facilitate spiritual growth. It is not surprising, therefore, that the Law of Karma has sometimes been called by another name—the Law of Opportunity.
It has been said that the human soul is inherently of fixed design. Indeed, the soul is a divine archetype and its destiny is to manifest its archetypal pattern through its lower instrument, the personality. Essentially, karma reveals the facets of consciousness that tend to inhibit the full expression of this archetype.  In this regard, karma can be seen as an agent of opportunity. It invites us to recognize the next step to be taken in order to more fully live the soul’s archetypal wisdom.
With this understanding, the struggles and challenges of life take on new meaning and relevance. No longer is karmic restraint viewed as a burdensome obstacle on the path of evolution.  Instead it acts as a roadmap leading to the soul’s perfected expression. The specific karmic circumstances we individually face are best understood as stepping stones leading to a heightened state of existence. In the truest sense, the inescapability of karma is a paradoxical blessing of sorts. While it certainly can initiate painful adjustments and lessons, it also bestows new opportunity once the adjustments are made. Karma does not prevent us from arriving at enlightenment’s gate. Instead, it provides the personalized steps that developmentally lead us to its threshold.
 

The Seven Rays

A Septenary Manifestation of Divinity
As is well known within the Esoteric Tradition, all of Creation comes into being through the expression of seven unique qualities of divinity.  Customarily referred to as the Seven Rays, these emanations arise from the One Life (God), and are living streams of ITS nature manifesting in and as Cosmos.  In their infinite intermixing and blending, the diversity of all that we see and know arises.  Perhaps most important is the realization that every human soul is found upon one of these Rays.  Given this, to recognize the soul ray, deep within, is to discover one’s spiritual purpose in life—one’s Raison d’être.
Though I will write much about the Seven Rays in future blog entries, as an introduction it may be helpful if I were to simply name them so that you have the opportunity to sense meditatively which of these titles resonates inwardly.  In and of itself, such an affinity is not infallible evidence of the soul ray, but it is nonetheless a beginning point in one’s search for it.  Though there are many appellations available (both ancient and contemporary), below are the names most frequently used for each of the Rays:
 
First Ray: Will and Power

Second Ray: Love and Wisdom
Third Ray: Active Intelligence and Adaptability

Fourth Ray: Harmony through Conflict

Fifth Ray: Concrete Knowledge and Science

Sixth Ray: Idealism and Devotion

Seventh Ray: Ceremonial Order and Magic.
 
It is important, particularly when new to this subject, to understand that the numbering of the rays is not indicative of sequentiality or ranking.  Essentially, the Rays are equal but different.  Each of them is a manifestation of a category or type of divine consciousness evolving through space and over the vastness of time.
Though the Seven Rays define the nature and parameters that characterize human soul types, this is not the only influence they have in the shaping of the human experience.  For example, the Seven Rays represent the energetic source that facilitates the differentiation and evolution of the various kingdoms in nature; the emergence of cultural tendencies within a nation; and they govern the emergence of the societal institutions we live within.
The Rays represent the septenary manifestation of Divinity, and are the most fundamental and universal archetypes underpinning all that is.  When looked at beyond their immediate application to humanity, they have correlation to the seven archangels noted in the Abrahamic religions, as well as the seven Rishi Lords revered in Hinduism.  They are involved in the livingness inherent in various constellations of stars, the life force animating the planets within our solar system, and the underlying impulse that gives rise to the great astrological ages.  From this it can be seen that the Seven Rays are universally pervasive, for there is no place or circumstance where they are not found.
  

The First Ray

The Lord of the Burning Ground
 The first ray is the divine energy that gives impulse to the evolutionary movement of all things. As the carrier of Divine Will, this ray is the force that drives Life to eventually manifest its archetypal purpose and destiny. Within each of us, it is that which pushes consciousness to take its next step in development, even if this involves pain and suffering along the way.
There are times in life when we know that we need to stand unwaveringly strong in order to overcome various external and internal obstacles that prevent forward movement in our lives. It is therefore no wonder that, in ancient lore, this living ray has been called The Lord of the Burning Ground. It forces each of us to walk across the hot coals of crisis—and this as a prelude to heightened soulful living.
Though each of the Seven Rays finds expression within every human being, there is great variability to this. For those well-endowed with the first ray, a variety of characteristics are likely to be witnessed in their way of being in the world. Such individuals often have a strong sense of will and drive, and also have a natural ability to govern and direct people and events. They tend to view the world from a big-picture perspective, and have a deep understanding of principles and priorities.
As the Ray of Will and Power, this sacred energy is essential to every human being, particularly to those who are walking the spiritual path. The long journey to enlightenment often entails going against the norms and expectations of others, as well as the whole of society. The first ray, when wisely and rightly accessed, provides each of us with the means to break through such barriers and, by so doing, allows the soul to more radiantly shine forth.
 

The Second Ray

The Lord of Eternal Love
 As an emanation arising from the One Life, this ray has a magnetic and attractive quality to it. In the largest sense, it is the ray that holds the memory of the original condition of Oneness within the entirety of Creation. Yet on a human level it manifests as compassion, empathy, and loving wisdom. In the arcane nomenclature of esotericism, this living energy has sometimes been called the Lord of Eternal Love and is closely associated with the Law of Attraction. Its energy helps us sense that behind the diversity of outer life there exists an abiding oneness. This is the great gift that the second ray conveys.
Though all of the Seven Rays are equal in their contribution to human evolution, this particular ray holds a unique position and influence within this divine septenary. For we are told, in the ancient esoteric literature, that our Solar Logos (the deity that ensouls our solar system) is a second ray being. With this in mind, there is much truth in the old adage that “God is Love.” When considering our local god (solar logos), this is most certainly true. And if we, as human beings, are merely atoms of consciousness with the beingness of the Solar Logos, then we too are radiations of love and wisdom. Such is the blessed nature of our solar systemic existence.
In addition to being pervasively present, there are many human beings whose soul or personality is uniquely conditioned by this ray of love and wisdom. When expressed wisely, such people demonstrate a profound sensitivity toward others, are deeply intuitive and often have a natural ability to teach and illumine. In this regard, it is not surprising that the second ray underlies the urge to teach, and is also central to the healing arts.
  

The Third Ray

The Universal Mind
Each of the Seven Rays represents an aspect or attribute of the One Life (God) as it manifests throughout the Cosmos. Often referred to as the Ray of Active Intelligence and Adaptability, this sacred radiation represents the mind and creative potential of the One Life. It is the form-building force inherent in Creation and, through its work, the intelligent manifestation of the One Life comes into being.  As such, the third ray can best be understood as the Universal Mind.
As the representative of divine intelligence, this living ray is responsible for all that we externally see and know. Occultly considered, the entire universe can be understood as the out-pictured thoughtform of the One Life as it thinks itself into manifestation. By way of analogy, this is identical to the means used by soul as it initiates its incarnation into human form. The mind of the soul is what produces the incarnation and the circumstances through which rebirth will occur.
When viewed in a purely human context, the third ray is the archetypal force that gives rise to the phenomenon of consciousness itself. It is intimately related to the Law of Activity, and its inherent motion is what stimulates the construction of human thought, feeling and physical experiences. Here again we see the form-building role of this hallowed ray.
Though every human being has a natural relationship with the third ray, there are some whose soul or personality is largely conditioned by it. Such people are normally versatile and creative thinkers, have a faculty for language and vocabulary, and tend toward constant activity—both outwardly or inwardly considered. When clearly on the path of discipleship, people well-endowed with the third ray can be viewed as the forerunners to the light of God.
 

The Fourth Ray

The Divine Intermediary
It has been said that the spiritual path is a journey from duality to Oneness. Not surprising, therefore, the fourth ray holds notable importance for humanity. As the living energy most associated with duality and its resolution, the fourth ray is the foundation upon which the human kingdom evolves. It is responsible for the balancing and integrating of the soul with the human personality. This ray largely governs the play of the opposites evident within our thoughts, feelings and the conflicting demands of physical existence. Not surprisingly, this sacred energy has sometimes been given the appellation of Divine Intermediary.
As energy radiating from the One Life, the nature of the fourth ray is to drive evolution toward increasing degrees of balance and synthesis. This it surely does, but not without struggle. Often called the Ray of Harmony through Conflict, it forces the disciple to recognize and transform the many conflicting dualities woven within the warp and woof of consciousness.
Whether considering the dualistic drama between personal desire and selfless aspiration, the striving for happiness and the avoidance of sorrow, or the clash between separative versus unitive thinking….each will eventually become a battleground within the fabric of human consciousness. Resolution comes, but only when the individual can rise above the warring dualities. This requires that he or she find a place deep within, a lofty perch, where every conflicting duality can be synthesized as one.
Because humanity is the fourth kingdom in nature, it has a numerological affinity with the fourth ray. Indeed, in the ancient Esoteric Philosophy we are told that the Soul of Humanity itself is governed by this divine radiation. As such, we are all subject to its evolutionary influence. Beyond this, people whose personality is conditioned by the fourth ray will demonstrate predictable character tendencies. They usually prize spontaneity, are dramatic, and have an ability to invoke conflict. Yet as natural intermediaries, they are frequently gifted with the capacity to facilitate resolution and harmonization of crisis. Such people have an exquisite sensitivity to beauty, and frequently are able to create it as well.  Indeed, artists are usually well endowed with the gifts and liabilities of the fourth ray.

 

The Fifth Ray

The Dividing Sword
If there is one term that best describes the fifth ray’s influence, it would be the word precision. Essentially, the fifth ray is the great clarifier of truth. As a divine radiation, one of its influences pertains to the mind and the nature of human perception. It helps humanity mentally discern that which is true from that which only appears to be true. Through its emphasis on razor sharp discernment, it slowly conditions our perceptions with the capacity to wisely differentiate truth from pseudo-truth. Given this, its ancient description as a dividing sword seems well suited.
When considered from an historical perspective, the fifth ray is the root energy that gave impulse to the scientific and industrial revolutions. Commonly referred to as the Ray of Concrete Knowledge and Science, its influence has led to most of humanity’s scientific and technological advances during the last two centuries. The degree of mental acuity and investigative aptitude in today’s world is unparalleled in human history. By and large, this is due to the growing presence of this divine energy. Given the fact that it is the background radiation for the sign of Aquarius, it is reasonable to assume that the fifth ray will have a major shaping effect in human affairs for some time to come.
As an inherent part of their psychological constitution, fifth ray people are likely to demonstrate certain tendencies within their character. Having a well-developed capacity to separate fact from fiction, such people see things from a realistic and common-sense perspective. They are analytical, inventive and discriminating. At times, such people can be quite skeptical (sometimes to a fault), preferring investigation over speculative inquiry. Nonetheless, when on the path they are great dispensers of spiritual knowledge.

 

The Sixth Ray

The Devotee of Life

As a major shaping force in human consciousness, devotion to all that is sacred is the essential effect of this Ray. With an accompanying sense of sacrifice and submission, the sixth ray inclines the human heart to demonstrate reverence to that which is deemed good, true and beautiful. As an emergent and living radiation from the Divine, it’s not surprising that one of its ancient appellations is The Devotee of Life. Within each of us, the sixth ray is the force that propels us to mystically yearn for loving relationship with the One Life—God.

In addition to its devotional effects, the sixth ray gives rise to idealism.  People well endowed with it tend to believe that their beloved ideals represent central truths to live by, whether considered from a secular or spiritual point of view.  As a consequence, such people tend to be extremely loyal and are profoundly self sacrificing in support of their cherished ideals. As with all the rays, the effect the sixth ray has on human consciousness is dual. It can lift us to spiritual heights where we feel mystically aligned with the Divine. Yet it can also be distorted by the impurities of our lower natures, leading to rigid idealism and blind devotion.

Comparatively, over the last several centuries the sixth ray has had a dominating effect on humanity. This is due to the fact that, zodiacally, this Ray of Idealism and Devotion is a foundational energy inherent in the sign of Pisces. Given that we are now transitioning away from The Fishes, many of the global crises we now face can be traced to humanity’s sixth ray habits in conflict with the more mentally creative, and less idealistic, influence of the incoming sign of Aquarius—the Water Bearer.

 

Seventh Ray

– The Keeper of the Magical Word –
Bringing heaven to earth is the fundamental urge evoked by the Seventh Ray. As the governing energy underlying the physical plane, this beam of light inclines us to ground the love and wisdom we inwardly sense. Because of this, the Seventh Ray has been closely tied to practical mysticism. It conditions an individual to meditatively touch the subtle heights of consciousness while simultaneously keeping his or her feet firmly planted on the ground.  
The Seventh Ray is also the divine force supporting the art of white magic. Using the nomenclature of esotericism, magic is simply the term used to denote the process of bringing intuitively realized ideas into outer tangible expression. Indeed, it is the art of creative manifestation and the Seventh Ray is the energy that facilitates this. Though spiritual creativity comes in many forms, it is the creative use of language that is the most powerful. The consciousness of humanity evolves via the ideations communicated through the spoken and written word. Generally speaking, seventh ray disciples are naturally adept in this regard. Is it any wonder, therefore, that one of the ancient names for this sacred ray is The Keeper of the Magical Word?
Because this energy has an intimate connection to the sign of Aquarius, it is true to say that humanity is entering into a great seventh ray era. As a building ray, it is helping us to realize new and practical ideas that support the restructuring of civilization and human interaction. Globally considered, the Seventh Ray is responsible for humanity’s awakening to our intimate relationship to Mother Earth and our growing commitment toward environmental protection. It is the energy that underpins the development of those economic, political and social structures that will help humanity to establish right relationship with the larger living systems of which we, individually and collectively, are constituent parts.

 

The Dance of Life Itself 

Evolution represents a drama of unfolding potential. This is true whether we are discussing the evolution of a blade of grass, an animal living within the wild, or a human being. All categories of life are states of consciousness evolving through form toward some higher state of existence. Indeed, evolution is rooted in the spirit’s yearning to actualize the potential inherent within its nature. The life of every human being is truly a dance between one’s innate potential and the actualization of that potential within the crucible of outer living. It is the dance of life itself.
Traditionally, when we consider dance, we think of its many forms and the cultures that have created them. Today we honor and participate in a wide variety of dance expressions. Yet, whether we are considering the many forms of dance, such as Latin, ballet, or modern (to name just a few), we actually are witnessing the out-picturing of various states of consciousness. Dancing is an attempt by an individual (or a culture) to recognize and express some aspect of consciousness. The type of dance a person finds attractive can reveal much about his/her inner life, and what consciousness is seeking to express in the outer world. From the esoteric perspective, that which is built into the fabric of consciousness will always seek outer expression in some form. The art of dance is an example of this. However, more broadly considered, any aspect of life represents the same thing –a facet of consciousness seeking an expressive outlet.
When considering this idea, we must not presume that what is expressed via dance is always evolutionary. As stated earlier, dance is the outer manifestation of an inner condition. This is a notion that is woven into the nature of existence itself, and is therefore good. Yet dance can either be progressive (and therefore supportive of the soul’s evolution needs), or it can hold the soul back from further growth and development. The determining factor has to do with the source that gives impulse to the desire to dance. When using the word “source,” I am speaking of the “self-construct” within each of us. Every human being is dual, in that we each recognize our base nature as well as a lofty part of ourselves. These two parts each have the potential for defining our individual sense of identity. They are both, therefore, centers for the emergence of the self-construct; the person we believe ourselves to be at any given moment. One is the personality, and it indicates the state of consciousness that has been achieved over countless incarnations. The other is indicative of the soul itself. When the soul gives impulse toward a particular form of dance, it will be supportive of one’s spiritual growth. Conversely, when the personality governs the desire to dance, spiritual growth does not occur, for the past is being favored over the future. The impulses coming from the soul will always point to future growth, while those of the personality tend to favor the selfish and/or animal yearnings of the past.
A person’s attraction to music can come in two forms. Either s/he will be drawn to it because of the emotional reaction that it evokes, or through a deep affinity it has to the heart. It is important to realize that feeling states are quite different from experiences coming forth through the heart, though they are often confused for each other. Feelings are governed by the solar plexus chakra and are always self-referencing at their core. Genuine experiences of the heart, on the other hand, are comparatively selfless. When the heart is truly touched, the experience puts a person en rapport with the oneness of all things. Spiritually considered, authentic love is the most impersonal force in creation. It is that which makes it possible for each of us to know and realize that inwardly we are all one. Emotions cannot provide this insight because they are too self-referencing. When the emotions are driving one’s desire to dance, then it is likely that the personality is giving birth to the impulse. It does this by stimulating the solar plexus center. However, when the soul is guiding one’s musical attractions, it utilizes the heart as the chakra of choice. When such is the case, the sense of music and dance will be uplifting and decentralizing at the same time. It is to feel joy while simultaneously “taking the eyes off oneself.” The soul is governed by the principle of selfless love and the essential oneness of life. Conversely, the personality is governed by the principle of individuality and self-engrossment. Herein is a clue to discerning whether the soul or personality is the “director on the stool” in the musical drama of life.
In the ancient esoteric literature we are given to understand that the divine function of music and dance is to lift the spirit toward a higher state of awareness. It might be said that music and dance are gates into the deeper mysteries of existence itself, just as are science, religion and philosophy. When dance is able to give to an individual a deeper sense of spiritual Beingness, its expression is extremely helpful. Such realization through movement is needed in order for a new and emerging aspect of the soul to be realized and integrated into one’s life. This is the nature of evolution. That which is subjective seeks to ground itself in objective expression. Potential demands actualization through form, and this, as a function of evolution itself. Yet, when the personality gives the impulse toward movement and dance, then the evolutionary needs of the soul are not being met. Instead, the personality’s historical desires dominate one’s perception leading to forms of dance that may be satisfying but not spiritually uplifting.
To understand the drama between the soul and personality we must realize that the personality (ego) has had supremacy over the soul for most of a person’s incarnational history. Only toward the later phase of human evolution does the soul become inwardly recognized. Up until this realization, personality consciousness (which is the consciousness inherent in concrete thoughts, feelings and physical sensations) is the focus of development. This is as it should be, in that the soul needs a well-developed personality to work through, or shall I say – dance with? Paradoxically, when the personality has evolved to the point that it is finally able to sense the soul within, it tends to resist the search for it. This is because a fully evolved personality is one that functions in the world quite successfully on its own (seemingly). It therefore tends to resist looking for the soul because it realizes that to find it is to stage an eventual transfer of power and authority to it; an event the personality views as an act of self-diminishment. Even so, the personality must one day realize that it is merely the servant to the eternal soul seated behind the scenes. When this begins to occur, an individual is said to have “stepped onto the Path,” and the journey to enlightenment and liberation is then consciously pursued. No longer does mere faith govern the life. An inner experience of the soul is authentically known, and commitment to it becomes the all-encompassing motive for living life. Indeed, the nature of the dance radically changes. By analogy, when two people dance one will usually lead while the other follows that lead. Metaphorically, this is true when we consider the dance between the soul and personality. For countless ages the personality has led the dance while the soul quietly follows. Yet, when one enters the Path the soul begins to lead and the personality discovers the value of following. The personality gives the dance over the soul, for it now knows that the guiding steps of the soul will reveal more beauty. Movement that gives inspiration, meaning and beauty to life is precisely what occurs when the soul is given the opportunity to lead the dance.
When we consider the subject of dance from a cosmic perspective, the mythologies of the East offer much insight. In particular, the nature of Lord Shiva conveyed within the Hindu Tradition. Shiva represents the dynamic god of fire and power. This cosmic being is a part of the Hindu pantheon, and is roughly equivalent to the Father archetype held by the Trinitarians of the Christian faith. It is the masculine force manifesting throughout all of Creation, and is the dynamic energy of all movement, change and dissolution. As such, this deity is related to the subject at hand, for dance is the manifestation of all movement within form. The universe, with its seemingly endless and complex motion, is evidence of Shiva’s presence. Esoterically considered, evolution is a dance of divine Will (Shiva) interacting with intelligence substance (Divine Mother), leading to the manifestation and evolution of all things. The Hindu notion of the “dance of Shiva” is indicative of this idea. Through His rhythmic motions, consciousness itself emerges and time and space are realized. Dance is therefore a rhythmic art form that symbolizes the act of creation itself. It is therefore not surprising to learn that dance is considered an essential aspect to many magic systems of thought. It is the dance of fiery energy taking form. This is the essential meaning behind the dancing flames that encircle many of the images of Shiva found in Hindu art.  It is the One Life manifesting within (and as) the universe and all that is contained within it.
Of practical value is the understanding that every aspect of life is a dance of sorts. Whether considering one’s career interests, friendships, or belief systems, all are dramas of consciousness playing upon the stage of life experience. In each department of life, the question must always be asked – am I living this part of my life according to the rhythm I sense deep within myself? The dance of life in defined by how we live it. The more that we sense the sacred tones and rhythms within the depths of consciousness, the more we are dancing to the soul’s song. In truth, to live life in step with the cadence of the soul is to experience the joy that it confers. Without a doubt, the measure of joy is the litmus test that should be used, for it is unfailingly accurate. When joy is authentically touched, the soul is surely directing the music of one’s life at the moment it is felt. The dance of life is then in harmony with the soul’s expressive intention. When joy spontaneously emerges through life circumstance, there is a sense of knowing (consciously or unconsciously) that a gate leading into the chamber of the soul has been entered.
In this discussion we have considered the art of dance from several perspectives. We have seen that its divine role is to uplift the spirit, and to assist in the actualization of the soul’s inherent potential. When the soul has been completely actualized, its radiant beauty and wisdom are fully expressed within one’s outer life, and this, without encumberment. When able to evoke a reaction within the heart, all forms of art facilitate the evolution of consciousness in this way.  Evolution is a dance with meaning and purpose behind it. Indeed, every person’s destiny lies in his/her ability to realize that the soul is seeking to impose its subtle rhythm upon the personality. When the personality begins to conform to the cadence of the soul, the dance becomes anew. The spiritual dance is then known, and life itself is understood as the ballroom for its performance.
© 2004  William Meader