Annie Besant





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The Secret Doctrine by H P Blavatsky


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INTRODUCTION . . . . . . 9










. . . ^ . 92

INDEX * .93




THEOSOPHY is derived from two Greek words Theos,

God; Sophia, Wisdom and is therefore God-Wisdom,

Divine Wisdom. Any dictionary will give as its mean

ing : "A claim to a direct knowledge of God and of

Spirits," a definition which is not inaccurate, though it

is scanty and affords but a small idea of all that is

covered by the word, either historically or practically.

The obtaining of " a direct knowledge of God "

is as

we shall see in dealing with the religious aspect of

Theosophy the ultimate object of all Theosophy, as

it is the very heart and life of all true Religion ; this is

" the highest knowledge, the knowledge of Him by

whom all else is known "

; but the lower knowledge,

that of the knowable " all else " and the methods of

knowing it, bulk largely in Theosophical study. This

is natural enough, for the supreme knowledge must be

gained by each for himself, and little can be done by

another, save by pointing to the way, by inspiring to

the effort, by setting the example ; whereas the lower

knowledge may be taught in books, in lectures, in con

versation, is transmissible from mouth to ear.


This inner, or esoteric, side of religion is found in all

the great faiths of the world, more or less explicitly

declared, but always existing as the heart of the religion,


beyond all the dogmas which form the exoteric side.

Where the exoteric side propounds a dogma to the in

tellect, the esoteric offers a truth to the Spirit ; the one

is seen and defended by reason, the other is grasped

by intuition that faculty

" beyond the reason " after

which the philosophy of the West is now groping. In

the religions that have passed away it was taught in

the "

Mysteries," in the only way in which it can be

taught by giving instruction how to pursue the methods

which unfold the life of the Spirit more rapidly than that

life unfolds in natural and unassisted evolution ; we

learn from classical writers that in the Mysteries the

fear of death was removed, and that the object aimed

at was not the making of a good man only the

man who was already good was admissible but the

transforming of the good man into a God. Such

Mysteries existed as the heart of the religions of

antiquity, and only gradually disappeared from Europe

from the fourth to the eighth centuries, when they

ceased for want of pupils. We find many traces of

the Christian Mysteries in the early Christian writers,

especially in the works of S. Clement of Alexandria and

of Origen, under the name of " The Mysteries of Jesus ".

The condition of high morality was made here, as in the

Greek Mysteries :

" Those who for a long time have

been conscious of no transgression ... let them draw

near." Indications of their origin and existence are

found in the New Testament, in which the Christ is

said to have taught His disciples secretly

" Unto you

it is given to know the mysteries of the Kingdom of

God, but to others in parables

" and these teachings,

Origen maintains, were handed down in the Mysteries

of Jesus ; S. Paul also declares that " we speak

1 wisdom among them that are perfect

" two

terms used in the Mysteries. Islam has its secret

teachings said to have been derived from Ali, the

son-in-law of the Prophet Muhammad to be found

by meditation and a discipline of life, methods taught

among the Sufis. Buddhism has its Sangha, within


which, again by meditation and a discipline of life, the

inner truth is to be found. Hinduism, both in its

scriptures and its current beliefs, asserts the existence

of the supreme and the lower knowledge, the latter to

be gained by instruction, the former, once more, by

meditation and a discipline of life. It is this which makes

the supreme knowledge

" esoteric "

; it is not deliber

ately veiled and hidden away, but it cannot be imparted ;

it can only be gained by the unfolding of a faculty, of

a power to know, of a mode of consciousness, latent in

all men, but not yet developed in the course of normal

evolution. This shows itself sporadically in the Mystic,

often in erratic fashion, often accompanied with

hysteria, but, even then, is none the less an indication

for the clear-sighted and unprejudiced of a new de

parture in the long evolution of human consciousness.

It is brought to the surface sometimes by exceptional

purity :

" the pure in heart . . . shall see God."

Startling irruptions of it into ordinary life are seen in

such cases of " sudden conversion " as are recorded by

Prof. James.1 The spiritual consciousness is a reality;

its witness is found in all religions, and it is stirring in

many to-day, as it has stirred in all ages. Its evolution

in the individual can only be gently and deliberately

forced, ahead of normal evolution, by the meditation

and the discipline of life alluded to above. For esotericism

in religion is not a teaching, but a stage of

consciousness ; it is not an instruction, but a life.

Hence the complaint made by many, that it is elusive,

indefinite ; it is so to those who have not experienced it,

for only that which has been experienced in consciousness

can be known to consciousness. Esoteric methods can be

taught, but the esoteric- knowledge to which they lead,

when successfully followed and lived, must be won by

each for himself. We may help to remove obstacles to

vision, but a man can only see with his own eyes.

1 Varieties of Religious Experience.



Theosophy is this direct knowledge of God ; the

search after this is the Mysticism, or Esotericism, com

mon to all religions, thrown by Theosophy into a scien

tific form, as in Hinduism, Buddhism, Roman Catholic

Christianity and Sufism. Like these, it teaches in a

quite clear and definite way the methods of reaching

first-hand knowledge by unfolding the spiritual con

sciousness, and by evolving the organs through which

that consciousness can function on our earth once

more, the methods of meditation and of a discipline of

life. Hence it is the same as the Science of the Self,


the Science of the Eternal,2 which is the core of Hinduism;

it is

" the Knowledge of God which is Eternal Life "

which is the essence of Christianity. It is not a new

thing, but is in all religions, and hence we find the late

eminent Orientalist, Max Miiller, writing his well-known

work on Theosophy, or Psychological Religion.


Theosophy, in a secondary sense the above being

the primary is the body of doctrine, obtained by

separating the beliefs common to all religions from the

peculiarities, specialities, rites, ceremonies and customs

which mark off one religion from another ; it presents

these common truths as a consensus of world-beliefs,

forming, in their entirety, the Wisdom-Religion, or the

Universal Religion, the source from which all separate

religions spring, the trunk of the Tree of Life from which

they all branch forth.

The name Theosophy, which, as we have said, is

Greek, was first used by Ammonius Saccas, in the third

century after Christ, and has remained ever since in

the history of religion in the West, denoting not only

Mysticism, but also an eclectic system, which accepts

1 Atma-vidya. 2 Brahma-vidys.


truth wherever it is to be found, and cares little for its

outer trappings. It appeared in its present form in

America and Europe in 1875, at the time when Compara

tive Mythology was being used as an effective weapon

against Christianity, and, by transforming it into

Comparative Religion, it built the researches and dis

coveries of archaeologists and antiquarians into bul

warks of defence for the friends of religion, instead of

leaving them as missiles of attack for its enemies


The unburying of ancient cities, the opening of old

tombs, the translation of archaic manuscripts of both

dead and living religions, proved to demonstration the

fact that all the great religions which existed and

had existed resembled each other in their most salient

features. Their chief doctrines, the outlines of their

morality, the stories which clustered round their

founders, their symbols, their ceremonies, closely

resembled each other. The facts were undeniable, for

they were carved on ancient temples, written down in

ancient books ; the further research was carried, the

bulkier grew the evidence. Even among the most de

graded tribes of savages, traces were found of similar

teachings, traditions of sacred truths overlaid by the

crudities of animism and fetishism. How to explain

such similarities ? what their bearing on Christianity ?

" Evolution " was then the "

open sesame " of Science,

and the answer to these questions was not long delayed.

Religion had evolved ; from the dark ignorance of prime

val savages, who personified the powers of the Nature

they feared, had evolved the inspiring religions and the

splendid philosophies which had enthralled and civilised

mankind. The medicine-men of savages had been

glorified into Founders of religions ; the teachings of

Saints and Prophets were the refining of the hysterical

babblings of half-epileptic visionaries; the synthesis

of natural forces a synthesis wrought out by man s


splendid intellect had been emotionalised into God.

Such was the answer of Comparative Mythology to the

alarmed questionings of men and women who found

their houses of faith crumbling into pieces around them,

leaving them exposed to the icy winds of doubt. At

the same time Immortality was threatened, and though

intuition whispered: "Not all of me shall die," physi

ology had captured psychology, and was showing the

brain as the creator of thought thought, which was

born with the brain, grew with it, was diseased with it,

decayed with it ; did it not finally die with it ? Agnos

ticism grew and flourished ; what could man know,

beyond what his senses could discover, beyond what

his intellect could grasp ? Such was the condition of

educated thought in the last quarter of the nineteenth

century. The younger generation can scarcely realise

that veritable "

eclipse of faith ".


Into that Europe Theosophy suddenly came, assert

ing the Gnosis as against Agnosticism, Comparative

Religion against Comparative Mythology. It declared

that man had not exhausted his powers in using his

senses and his intellect, for that beyond these there

were the intuition and the sure witness of the Spirit ;

that the existence of these powers was a demonstrable

fact ; that the testimony of the spiritual consciousness

was as indubitable as that of the intellectual and the

sensuous. It admitted all the facts discovered by

archaeologists and antiquarians, but asserted that they

were susceptible of quite other explanation than that

given by the enemies of religion, and that while the

facts were facts the explanation was only a hypothesis.

It set over against this hypothesis another, equally

explanatory of the facts that the community of re

ligious teachings, ethics, stories, symbols, ceremonies,

and even the traces of these among savages, arose from

the derivation of all religions from a common centre,


from a Brotherhood of Divine Men, which sent out one

of its members into the world from time to time to

found a new religion, containing the same essential

verities as its predecessors, but varying in form with

the needs of the time, and with the capacities of the

people to whom the Messenger was sent. It was obvious

that either hypothesis would explain the admitted facts.

How should a decision between them be reached ?

Theosophy appealed to history : it pointed out that the

palmy days of each religion were its early days, and that

the teachings of the Messenger were never improved

on by the later adherents of the faith, whereas the

contrary must have been the case if the religion had

been produced by evolution ; the Hindus founded them

selves on their Upanishads,

1 the Zoroastrians on the

teachings of their Prophet, the Buddhists on the sayings

of the Lord Buddha, the Hebrews on Moses and the

Prophets, the Christians on the teachings of the Lord

Christ, the Muhammadans on those of their great

Prophet. Later religious literature consisted of com

mentaries, dissertations, arguments, not of new depar

tures, more inspiring than the original. Inspiration is

ever sought in later days in the sayings of the Founder,

and in the teachings of His immediate disciples. Manu,

Vyasa, Zarathushtra, the Buddha, the Christ these

Figures tower above humanity, and command the love

and reverence of mankind, generation after generation.

These are the Messengers, the religions are their messages.

Theosophy points to all these as the proofs that its

hypothesis is the true explanation of the facts, is no

longer a hypothesis, indeed, but is a truth affirmed by

history. Against this splendid array of Messengers with

their messages, Comparative Mythology cannot bring

one single proof from history of a religion that has

evolved from savagery into spirituality and philosophy ;

its hypothesis is disproved by history.

The Theosophical view is now so widely accepted that

people do not realise how triumphant was the opposing

1 Their most ancient literature, a part of the Vedas.


theory, when Theosophy again rode into the arena oi

the world s thought in 1875, mounted on its new steed,

the Theosophical Society. But any who would realise

the conditions then existing should turn to the literature

of Comparative Mythology, published during the pre

ceding century, from the voluminous works of Dulaurr

and Dupuis,1 through Higgins


Anacalypsis, to the

books of Hargrave Jennings, Forlong, and a dozen

others, speaking with a positiveness that led the reader

to believe that the statements made were based on facts,

which no educated person could deny. Those who

plunged into that labyrinth of discussions in their youth,

who lost themselves in its endless and intricate windings,

who saw their faith devoured by the Minotaur of Com

parative Mythology, they know and only they can

know in its fullness the intensity of the relief when

the modern Ariadne the much misunderstood and

much maligned Helena Petrovna Blavatsky gave them

a clue which guided them through the mazes of the

labyrinth, and armed them with the sword of the

" Secret Doctrine" 2 with which to slay the monster.

It may be interesting to note, in passing, that olafashioned

Christianity which believed that all mankind

had descended from Adam, created 4004 B.C. had

preserved a tradition of a primeval revelation, given to

Adam and carried by his posterity to all parts of the

world ; man, inheriting original sin from his ancestor,

had corrupted this, but traces of it were to be found in

the grains of truth hidden by the husks of " heathen "

religions. This view, however, despite the germ of

truth it contained, was quite out of court with educated

people, who knew that the human race had existed for

hundreds of thousands of years, at least, instead of for

a span of six thousand.

1 On phallic and sun worships.

2 Mme. Blavatsky s monumental work, published in 1889.






- The outcome of the whole position is that the fact of

* the community of religious belief is destructive to any

< religion which claims for itself a unique and isolated

position ; in such a position it is exposed to attack from

all sides, and its claim is easily disproved. But this

same fact is a defence, when all religions stand together,

when they present themselves as a Brotherhood, chil

dren of one ancestor, the Divine Wisdom.

This view becomes the more satisfactory as we notice

that each religion has its own special note, makes its

own special contribution to the forces working for the

evolution of man. As we notice their differences, in

addition to their similarities, we feel that they reveal a

plan of human education, just as when we hear a splendid

chord we feel that a master-musician has combined

the notes, with a full knowledge of the value of each.

Hinduism proclaims the One Immanent Life in every

thing, and hence the solidarity of all, the duty of each

to each, enshrined in the untranslatable word Dharma.1

Zoroastrianism strikes the note of Purity purity of

surroundings, of body, of mind. Hebraism sounds out

Righteousness. Egypt makes Science its word of power.

Buddhism asserts Right Knowledge. Greece breathes

of Beauty. Rome tells of Law. Christianity teaches

the value of the Individual and exalts Self-Sacrifice.

Islam peals out the Unity of God. Surely the world

is the richer for each, and we cannot spare one jewel

from our chaplet of the world s religions. Out of the fair

spectacle of their varied beauty and the spiritual value

of the variety, grows in our minds the sense of the

reality of the great Brotherhood, and its work in the

1 Dharma, translated as religion, duty, obligation, is more than

these. It indicates the sum of a man s past evolution all that

has made him what he is and the next steps which he must take

in order to ensure his further evolution with the least possible

delay and difficulty.



gurcrance of spiritual evolution. So deep a unity, so

exquisite and fruitful a diversity, cannot be mere chance,

mere coincidence, but must be the result of a plan

deliberately adopted and strongly carried out.


As the Theosophical system of thought is an immense,

an all-inclusive, synthesis of truths, as it deals with God,

the Universe, and Man, and their relations to each other,

it will be best to divide its presentation under four heads,

corresponding to a very obvious and rational view of

Man. Man may be regarded as having a physical body,

an emotional nature, and an intellect ; and through these

he, an eternal Spirit, manifests himself in this mortal

world. These three departments of human nature,

as we may call them, correspond to his great activities :

Science, Ethics and ^Esthetics, Philosophy.

(1) Through his senses Man observes the phenomena

around him, and verifies his observations by experi

ments ; through his brain he records and arranges his

observations, makes inductions, frames hypotheses,

tests his hypotheses by devising crucial experiments,

and arrives at knowledge of Nature and understanding

of her laws : thus he constructs sciences, the splendid

results of the intelligent use of the organs of the physical

body on the physical world. We must study Theosophy


(2) Man s emotional nature shows feelings and desires

feelings caused by contacts with the outside, contacts

which give pleasure or pain ; these arouse in him desires

cravings to re-experience the pleasure, to avoid the

recurrence of the pain. We shall see, when we come to

deal with these, that the deep-rooted yearning for

Happiness, planted in every sentient creature, spurs

him to place himself at last in harmony with law, that

is, to do the Right, to refuse to do the Wrong. The

expression of this harmony in life, in our relations with


others and in the building of ourselves, is Right Con

duct. The expression of this same harmony in matter

is Right Form, or Beauty. We must study Theosophy


(3) Man s intellect demands that his surroundings,

both as regards life and matter, shall be intelligible to

him ; it demands order, rationality, logical explanation.

It cannot live in a chaos without suffering; it must

know and understand, if it is to exist in peace. We

must study Theosophy as PHILOSOPHY.

(4) But these three, Science, Morality-Art, Philosophy,

do not perfectly satisfy our nature. The religious

consciousness persistently obtrudes itself in all nations,

all climes, all ages. It refuses to be silenced, and will

feed on the husks of superstition if denied the bread of

Truth. The Spirit who is Man will not cease his search

for the universal Spirit who is God, and God s answers

partial but with the promise of more are religions. We must study Theosophy as RELIGION.

Under these four heads all the Theosophical teachings

most important to human life and conduct may be pre

sented. There remain : a few indications of the practi

cal application of these to social problems, and a mere

statement for within the brief compass of this little

book no more is possible of the larger vistas of the

past and the future opened up to us by Theosophy.

All divisions which seek to divide the really indivisible

Spirit the spark from the universal Fire are unsatis

factory, and tend to veil from us the unity of the con

sciousness which is our Self. Senses, emotions, intellect,

are but facets of the one diamond, aspects of the one

Spirit. Spiritual life, Religion, should be a synthesis of

Science, Morality-Art, and Philosophy they are but

facets of Religion. Religion should permeate all studies,

as Spirit permeates all forms. Our Self is one, not

multiple, albeit his overflowing life expresses itself hi

multitudinous ways. So although, for the sake of

clarity, I divide my subject into parts, I would pray

my reader to remember that classification is a means


and not an end ; that classifications are many, while

consciousness is one ; and that while, for lucid ex

planation, we may avoid confusing the persons, we

should ever bear in mind that we must also avoid,

dividing the substance.



THE old way of study was to state universals, and to

descend from them to particulars, and it remains the

best way for serious and philosophic students. The

modern way is to begin with particulars, and to ascend

from them to universals ; for the modern reader, who

has not yet made up his mind to a serious study of a

subject, this is the easier road, for it keeps the most

difficult part for the last. As this little book is meant

for the general reader, I follow this way.

Theosophy accepts the method of Science observa

tion, experiment, arrangement of ascertained facts,

induction, hypothesis, deduction, verification, assertion

of the discovered truth but immensely increases its

area. It sees the sum of existence as containing but

two factors, Life and Form, or, as some call them, Spirit

and Matter, others Time and Space, for Spirit is God s

motion, while Matter is His stillness ; both find their

union in Him, since the Root of Spirit is His Life, and

the Root of Matter is the universal ^Ether, the two

aspects of the One Eternal, out of Space and Time.1

While ordinary science confines Matter to the tangible,

Theosophical science extends it through many grades,

intangible to the physical, but tangible to the superphysical,

senses. It has observed that the condition

of knowing the physical universe is the possession of a

physical body, of which certain parts have been evolved

into organs of sense, eyes, ears, etc., through which

1 See Section III., p. 54.



perception of outside objects is possible, and other

parts have been evolved into organs of action, hands,

feet, and the rest, through which contact with outside

objects can be obtained. It sees that, in the past,

physical evolution has been brought about by the efforts

of life to use its nascent powers, and that the struggle

to exercise an inborn faculty has slowly shaped matter

into an organ through which that faculty can be more

fully exercised. To reverse Biichner s statement : We

do not walk because we have legs ; we have legs because

we wanted to move. We can trace the growth of legs

from the temporary pseudopodia of the amoeba, through

the development of permanent protrusions from bodies,

up to the legs of man, and they were all gradually formed

by the efforts of the living creature to move. As

W. K. Clifford said of the huge saurians of a past age :

" Some wanted to fly, and they became birds." The

" Will to live " that is, to desire, to think, to act

lies behind all evolution.

The Theosophist carries on the same principle into

higher realms, if such exist ; and if consciousness is to

know any other sphere

l than the physical, it must have

a body of matter belonging to the sphere it wants to

investigate, and the body must have senses, developed

by the same want of the Life to see, to hear, etc. That

there should be other spheres, and other bodies through

which those spheres can be known, is no more inherently

incredible than that there is a physical sphere, and that

there are physical bodies through which we know it.

The Occultist the student of the workings of the

divine Mind in Nature asserts that there are such

spheres, and that he has and uses such bodies. The

following statements with one exception which will

1 I use the word " sphere

" to indicate the whole extent of

matter belonging to a definite type, i.e. built of atoms of one

sort. See under "Atoms" in Section VI. There may be several

worlds in a sphere ; thus the heaven-world is in the mental sphere.

The word plane has been used in this sense, but it is found that

people do not readily grasp its meaning.


be noted in its place are made as results of investiga

tions carried on in such spheres by the use of such bodies

by the writer and other Occultists ; we all received the

outline from highly developed members of our humanity,

and have proved it true step by step, and have filled in

many gaps, by our own researches. We, therefore, feel

that we have the right to affirm, on our own first-hand

experience stretching over a period of twenty-three

years in one case, and twenty-five in another that

super-physical research is practicable, and is as trust

worthy as physical research, and should be carried on

in similar ways ; that investigators are subject to errors,

both in physical and super-physical spheres, and for

similar reasons, and that these errors should lead to

closer research and not to its discontinuance.


The following table presents a view of the spheres

related to and including our earth, of the bodies used in

investigating them, and of the states of consciousness

manifested through them by their owner, the Man.

The Eternal Man, a fragment of the Life of God, is

called the Monad, a " oneness "


l he is verily a Son of

God, made in His image, and expressing his life in three

ways : by the aspect of Will, the aspect of Wisdom,

the aspect of Creative Activity. He lives in his own

sphere, a spark in the divine Fire, and sends down a

ray, a current of his life, which embodies itself in the

five spheres of manifestation. This ray, appropriating

an atom of matter from each of the three higher of these

spheres, appears as the human Spirit, reproducing the

1 This is the statement, including what is said farther on about

the Monad, noted above, as not having been verified by the writer s

own observation. This highest Self is only made manifest to such

as we are on rare occasions in a great downflow of dazzling light :

in his own nature, in his own world, he is beyond the reach of

any vision yet attained by any of us. Yet what we call our life

is his, since he is the highest Self in each of us, "the hidden

God "as the Egyptians used to say.


three aspects of the Monad, of Will, Wisdom, and

Creative Activity, and reveals himself, at a certain

stage of evolution, as the human ego, the individualised

Self ; he begins his long journey as a mere seed of life,

and, never losing his identity, moves through that long

journey, unfolding all the powers of the Monad, that

lie hidden within him, as the tree in the seed. As he

conquers his kingdom of matter, his Parent-Monad

pours down into him more and more life, and draws from

him more and more knowledge of the worlds in which he

lives. But the passing into the three highest mani

fested spheres is not enough for gaining full knowledge

and full power in our Solar System ; two yet remain,

and the process of dipping down into matter goes on.

The Spirit strengthens himself for his work by appro

priating a molecule of the coarser matter of the lowest

sphere he has so far entered, and links on to this an

atom from the fourth manifested sphere of denser

matter, and one from the fifth, the lowest, our physical

sphere. He is to obtain bodies, formed round these

permanently appropriated particles of matter, by which

he may be able to know and act upon the five manifested

spheres. We shall see that his lower bodies, forming

what is called his Personality, are cast off at and after

what we call death, and are renewed for each suc

cessive birth, while the higher, forming his Individuality,

remain through his long pilgrimage an important fact

as bearing on the possibility of remembering the past.

The above facts are tabulated opposite (see p. 25).

It may be asked :

" What is the object of this descent

into matter ? What does the Monad gain by it ?


Omniscient in his own sphere, he is blinded by matter

in the spheres of manifestation, being unable to respond

to their vibrations. As a man who cannot swim, flung

into deep water, is drowned, but can learn to move

freely in it, so with the Monad. At the end of his

pilgrimage, he will be free of the Solar System, able to

function in any part of it, to create at will, to move at

pleasure. Every power that he unfolds through denser


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matter, he retains for ever under all conditions ; the

implicit has become explicit, the potential the actual.

It is his own Will to live in all spheres, and not only in

one, that draws him into manifestation.


The actual unfolding of consciousness is best traced

from below, for the physical body is the one which is

first organised as its instrument for knowledge, and it

unfolds itself by this in the physical world we know.

The emotional nature stimulates the glands and gaaglia

of the physical body, and the mental enthrones itself

over the cerebro-spinal system, and these proceed with

their evolution in the invisible spheres through the

stimulus obtained from the physical. We need not

dwell on the evolution of the dense physical body, as

that may be studied as physical science. Human

consciousness is here automatic, the Man having no

longer need to direct physical processes ; they go on

by habit, the result of long pressure from consciousness.

The finer part of the physical body, the etheric double,

permeates the dense, and extends a little beyond it

over the whole surface ; its proper sense-organs are

vortices on its own surface, situated opposite (1) the

top of the head, (2) the point between the eyebrows,

(3) the throat, (4) the heart, (5) the spleen, (6) the solar

plexus, (7) the base of the spine, (8, 9, 10) in the lower

part of the pelvic basin ; these last are not used, except

in Black Magic. These vortices technically called

chakrams, wheels, from their appearance are aroused

into activity in the course of occult training, and form

a bridge between the physical and astral spheres, so

that the latter comes to be included within the activity

of the waking consciousness. The health of its dense

partner depends on the Vitality in the etheric double,

which draws its energy directly from the Sun, and, in

the part in contact with the spleen, divides this energy

into streams, which it conveys to the different organs


of the dense body ; the surplusage radiates outwards

and energises all living creatures within its range. The

very neighbourhood of a vigorously healthy person

vitalises, while a weak body draws on all around it

for Vitality, often seriously depleting those near to it.

Physical magnetism, the power of healing, etc., are

ways in which this surplus Vitality may be usefully


Etheric vision physical vision keener than the normal

may be used for examining minute objects, such as

chemical atoms, or the wave-forms of electrical and

other forces, or for studying such of the nature-spirits

as use etheric matter for their lowest bodies fairies,

gnomes, brownies, and creatures of that ilk. Very

slightly increased tenseness of the nerves, caused by

excitement, ill-health, drugs, alcohol, may bring these

within sight.

The etheric part of the brain plays an active part in

dreams, especially in those caused by impressions from

outside, or from any internal pressure from the cere

bral vessels. Its dreams are usually dramatic, and

may embroider any memory of past events, objects, or



In normal healthy persons the etheric part of the

physical body does not separate from the dense, but

the greater part of it may be driven out by anaesthetics,

and slips out easily in the case of persons who are

mediumistic, often serving as the basis for materialisa

tions. Death is its complete withdrawal from its dense

counterpart, in conjunction with the consciousness in

the higher bodies ; it remains with these for a varying

interval usually about thirty-six hours after death

and then is thrown off by the Man as of no further use ;

it decays away pari passu with the dense corpse.

1 See the many cases given in Du Prel s Philosophy of Mysticism.




The astral sphere connected with our earth contains

two globes with which we need not here concern our

selves, also the astral world and its inhabitants, and

the intermediate or desire world, a part of the astral,

the inhabitants of which are normally under special

conditions. The whole sphere belongs to the state of

consciousness which shows itself as feelings, desires, and

emotions ; these changes in consciousness are accom

panied with vibrations in astral matter, and as astral

matter is fine and very rapid in its vibratory motions,

the vibrations are visible to astral sight as colours.

The passion of anger causes vibrations that yield a

flash of scarlet, while a feeling of devotion or love

suffuses the astral body with a blue or rosy hue. Each

feeling has its appropriate colour, because each is accom

panied by its own invariable set of vibrations.

The human astral body is, of course, composed of

astral matter, and, when accompanying the physical

body, which it permeates and beyond which it extends,

it appears as a cloud, or as a denned oval, according as

its owner is little or much developed. Clearness and

brightness of the more delicate colours, increased definiteness

of form and increase of size mark the higher

evolution. When the Man in his higher bodies draws

away from the physical as he does every night in

sleep then the astral body assumes the likeness of the

physical. Astral matter being very plastic under the

influence of thought, a man appears in the astral world

in the likeness of himself, as he sees himself, wearing

the clothes of which he thinks. A soldier, slain in

battle, and appearing in his astral body to a distant

friend, will bear his wounds ; a drowned man will

appear in dripping clothes. While human beings in the

astral world normally wear human forms, the in

habitants of that world who have not had physical


bodies higher fairies, nature-spirits connected with

the evolution of plant and animal life, and the like

wear bodies that are constantly changing their outlines

and sizes. Sportive elementals as nature-spirits are

often called will sometimes take advantage of this

plasticity of astral matter to swell themselves up into

huge and terrible shapes for the sake of terrifying un

trained intruders into their world. Some drugs, such

as hashish, bhang, opium, and extreme alcoholic poison

ing, so affect the physical nerves as to render them

susceptible to astral vibrations, and then the patients

catch glimpses of some inhabitants of the astral world.

The horrors which torment a man suffering from de

lirium tremens are largely due to the sight of the loath

some elementals that gather round places where liquor

is sold, and feed on its exhalations, and are attracted

round him by the effluvia of his own drink-sodden


All feelings of pleasure and pain in the physical body

are due to the presence of the interpenetrating astral,

and, if this be driven out by anaesthetics or mesmerism,

feeling disappears from the physical body. In sleep

during which the etheric double does not leave its dense

counterpart the astral can be very quickly recalled by

any disturbance of the physical body ; but where much

of the etheric matter has also been driven out, the bridge

of communication is broken, and trance is produced ;

under these conditions the dense body can be seriously

mutilated without pain supervening. Pain will, how

ever, show itself as soon as the astral body slips again

into the physical, and " consciousness returns ". It

may be said, in passing, that the normal centre of

human consciousness at the present stage of evolution

is in the astral body, from which it works on the physical.


Physical consciousness "

is now sub-conscious if such

a bull may be permitted to an Irishwoman.

The condition of a person during sleep varies with his

stage of evolution. The undeveloped man, in his higher

bodies, leaving the physical body, hovers round the


places with which he is familiar ; the average man

drifts towards persons to whom he is attracted, but his

attention is turned inwards, and he communes with his

friends mentally only ; at a stage a little higher, his

mind is very active and receptive, and can work out

problems presented to it more easily than in the physical

body, as witness the common sayings :


sleep brings


" better sleep on it," and the like. A problem

quietly placed in the mind on going to sleep will gener

ally be found answered in the morning. All these

people do not work consciously in the astral world ; for

this it is necessary that the attention should be turned

outwards, not inwards. Where a man is pure and selfcontrolled,

and shows


in the physical world,

he is often " awakened " in the astral world by a more

advanced person. The process consists merely in in

ducing him to attend to what is going on around him,

instead of remaining immersed in thought ; his astral

body has evolved and has become organised by his

mental and moral activities, and he has only to wake

up to his astral surroundings. His helper explains

matters to him, and for a time keeps him near him ;

he shows him that astral matter obeys his thought, that

he can move at will and at whatever speed he wishes,

that he can walk through rocks, dive into seas, pass

through raging fires, step over a precipice and hover in

air, always provided that he is fearless and confident ;

if he loses courage, and only then, he is in danger, and

the imagined injury may "

repercuss," i.e. show itself

on the physical body as a bruise, a scratch, a wound, etc.

When he has learned these preliminary lessons, and can

see and hear correctly in the astral world, he is set to

work to help the "


" and the "

dead" ; he is then

what we call " an invisible helper," and spends his

night in succouring those in trouble, teaching the

ignorant, guiding those who have newly arrived in the

astral world through the gateway of death. To these

last we must now turn.



This is the part of the astral world in which conditions

are specialised for discarnate human beings, who, unless

they have knowledge, are not free in the astral world,

but are " the spirits in prison


spoken of by S. Peter.

They are held prisoners by their desires, and hence the

name of desire world is given to their abode.

We have seen that, at death, the Man, clothed in his

finer bodies, draws himself out of the physical garment

worn during earth-life, the " coat of skin " with which

" the first man " was clothed after his " fall " into

matter, caused by his seizure of "

knowledge ".

" Which

things are an allegory," as S. Paul says of the story of

Abraham, Sarah, and Hagar. Having cast off his coat

of skin, the Man is himself, just as he wras while clothed

with it, and he "

goes to his own place

" in the astral

world, the place for which he has fitted himself. A re

arrangement of the matter of his astral body takes place

automatically, unless he has knowledge enough to

present it. During the life of the physical body, the

astral particles from all the seven astral subdivisions

of matter move freely about among themselves, and

some of all kinds are always on the surface of the astral

body ; sight of the whole astral world depends on the

presence on the surface of the astral body of particles

drawn from all the seven subdivisions, which answer

to our solids, liquids, gases, and the four states of ether.

These particles are not gathered together and fashioned

into an organ of vision, like the physical eye ; when

the Man turns his attention outwards he sees "

all over

him," through all these particles, or through such of

them as are in the direction of the object towards which

his attention is turned.1 If the rearrangement of the


1 New-comers in the astral world always look through the astral

simulacra of eyes, because accustomed to turn their attention out

wards in that way, just as they move their legs for walking.

Both are unnecessary.


matter of the astral body takes place, the matter of each

subdivision is gathered together, and a series of con

centric shells is formed, the densest being outside.

Hence the Man can only see the subdivision of the

astral world to which the outermost shell belongs ;

the amount of each kind of matter depends on the kind

of desires and emotions he has cultivated on earth.

If these have been of a low order, the densest astral

matter will be very strongly vitalised, and this outer

most shell, placing him in touch with the lowest division

of the astral world only, will last for a long time ; it

disintegrates by slow starvation, i.e. by the deprivation

of its accustomed satisfactions. Hence a drunkard, a

glutton, a sensualist, a man of violent and brutal pas

sions, having strongly vitalised by physical indulgence

the densest and coarsest combinations of astral matter,

can only be conscious of his surroundings through these,

and sees only people like himself, and the worst qualities

of those who are of better types ; his raging passions

can find no satisfaction, because he has lost the physical

organs by which he erstwhile gratified them ; moreover,

these passions are much more violent than before, for

during his physical life most of the force of the astral

vibrations was used up in merely setting in motion the

heavy physical particles of matter, and only what was

left over was felt as pleasure or pain ; hence all passions

are pale and weak on earth compared with their violence

in the astral world, where, after easily setting in motion

the light astral particles, they show the whole remainder

of their force as pleasure or pain, as a rapture or an

agony inconceivable on earth. This last is what religions

call " hell " and a veritable hell, as to suffering, it is,

created by the man for his own dwelling-place. But

it is only temporary, and might more fitly therefore,

for orthodox Christians and Musalmans, be called


purgatory ".

1 The thick layer of densest matter

1 Both these religions, while ordinarily speaking of hell as

everlasting, have passages in their Scriptures which contradict the


wears away, and the man loses sight of this sphere of

astral life and begins to perceive the next, having learned,

by the sad lesson of bitter suffering, that the pleasures

he valued on earth are verily

" wombs of pain".

The average man does not experience this unfortunate

after-death condition, not having drawn into his astral

body while on earth much of the densest matter, and

such of it as he has is not strongly vitalised, and it

cannot hold him. If his interests on earth have all

been trivial a round of office or household drudgery

or manual labour, alternating with low, though not

vicious, forms of amusement and he has cared nothing

for larger interests, those of the community and the

nation, he will find himself shelled in by matter of the

sixth subdivision of the astral world, and will be sur

rounded by the astral counterparts of physical objects,

without the power to affect them or to take part in the

earth-life led among them ; he will, therefore, to use a

colloquialism, find himself very much bored, and be a

prey to an intolerable sense of ennui. It may be said

that this is hard, as most people have to spend their

lives in drudgery of some kind ; are they to be bored

after death, having drudged before it ? True ; but a

little knowledge will prevent this, and for this very

reason Theosophy is being spread far and wide. The

work which carries on the world need not be drudgery,

and to deeply religious people is not drudgery even now ;

for all useful work is part of the divine Activity, and all

workers are organs of that Activity, the Hands wherewith

the divine Worker accomplishes His work. Production

and distribution agriculture, mining, manufactures,

commerce, the pettiest trade are God s ways of nourish

ing humanity, and are the means of evolution. When a

man, a woman, see their little daily tasks as integral

portions of the one great work, they are no longer

idea. The New Testament speaks of a time when "God shall be

all in all," and Al Quran declares :

" All things shall perish save

His Face."



drudges but co-workers with God.1 As George Herbert


" A servant in this cause

Makes drudgery divine ;

Who sweeps a room as for Thy laws

Makes that and th action fine."

Those who thus work will find no boredom after death,

but fresh and joyous activity. For the rest, they

gradually adapt themselves to the new conditions, and

are helped to do so, and they find that they are rid of

many of the discomforts of earth, and may lead a quite

pleasant life ; they are in touch with their friends on

earth, and find that these are quite companionable

during earth s nights, though provokingly indifferent

during its days ; as Mr. Leadbeater pithily says :

" The

dead are never for a moment under the impression that

they have lost the living," however much the latter

lament the loss of the dead they loved. The man passes

on through the sixth, fifth, and fourth subdivisions, en

joying more and more association with those he loves,

until he passes into the higher subdivisions the material

heavens of the less instructed religionists of all faiths,

the region for art, literature, science, philanthropy, and

the large interests of life, followed on earth with some

selfishness, and here pursued along the habitual physical

lines and with the use of astral reproductions of physical

means and apparatus. These same pursuits, carried

on for unselfish motives, lift the Man into the heavenworld,

their proper home, and thither also those who

followed them more selfishly pass, for when they weary

of them in the astral world they fall asleep, to wake in


The astral body has been cast off, shell after shell,

and in due time goes back to its elements, like the physi

cal. Some pure and lofty souls pass through the astral

world without attending to it, their minds set upon

higher things. Others, fully awake, do not allow the

1 See Application ofTheosophy to Social Problems, Section V., p. 77.


matter of their astral bodies to be rearranged, but

retain their freedom and perform useful service. Omit

ting this last class, whose stay in the astral world will

depend on other causes, the general rule is that the

astral after-death life is long for the undeveloped and

short for the well-developed, while the heavenly is long

for the latter and short for the former.



The mental sphere connected with our earth contains

two globes with which we are not now concerned. It

contains also two worlds, the higher and the lower, each

with its inhabitants, and a part of the lower is placed

under special conditions, for the use of discarnate

human beings ; this is the heaven-world. The whole

sphere belongs to the state of consciousness denominated

thought, or mental activity, and its matter answers to

the changes in consciousness that are caused by thinking ;

its seven subdivisions, though so much finer, again

correspond to those of the physical and astral worlds.

And the mental world is, like the physical, divided into

two, a lower and an upper, the former consistingof the four

denser sub-divisions and the latter of the three subtler ;

two bodies belong to it : the mental, composed of com

binations of the denser, and the causal, composed of

those of the finer. This world is of peculiar interest,

not only because Man spends here nearly all his time,

after the mind is fairly developed, only dipping down

into the physical world for brief snatches of mortal life

as a bird dives into the sea after a fish, but because it is

the meeting-place of the higher and the lower conscious

nesses. The immortal Individuality, descending from

above after the Monad has formed the Spirit by send

ing out his ray waits in high heaven, while the lower

bodies are being formed round the atoms attached to

him, brooding over them through long ages of slow

evolution ; when they are sufficiently evolved, he flashes


down and takes possession of them, to use them for his

own evolution. The habitat of the Spirit as Intellect

of him " whose nature is knowledge

" is the causal

world, the three higher levels of the mental sphere;

these give him his body, the causal, the body which

remains, ever evolving, throughout his long series of

incarnations in denser matter. This world and body

are so named because all the causes, the effects of which

are seen in the lower worlds, reside in them. The causal

body begins, with the above-named flashing down, as

a mere film of matter, egg-shaped, like a shell round the

lower bodies, formed within it, as the chick in the egg.

A delicate network radiates from the permanent atom

of the causal body to all parts of this egg-like film, the

atom glowing like a brilliant nucleus ; with it are as

sociated the permanent atoms of the physical and astral

bodies and the permanent molecule-unit of the mental.

During life, it encloses the whole bodies, and at the death

of each it preserves this permanent germ of each, with

all the vibratory powers enshrined within it, the " seed

of life

" for each successive body. For ages it is little

more than this subtle network and surface, for it can only

grow by the higher human activities, by such as arouse

in its subtle matter a faint vibratory response ; as the

personality grows more thoughtful, more unselfish, more

engaged in right activities, its harvest for its owner

grows richer and richer. The personalities are like the

leaves put forth by a tree ; they draw in material from

outside, transform it into useful substances, send it down

the tree as crude sap, drop off and wither ; the sap is

changed into tree-food, and nourishes the tree, which sends

out new leaves, to repeat the same cycle. The conscious

ness, in the mental, astral, and physical bodies, gathers

experience ; casting off the physical and astral bodies,

as dead leaves, it transmutes these experiences into

qualities in the mental body, during its heavenly life ;

it is indrawn into the causal body with its harvest,

casting away the mental body, like the others, and ia

blended with the Spirit, who put it forth, enriching him


with its harvest ; it has served the Spirit as a hand, put

forth to take food. The enriched Spirit, the Man, forms,

round the old permanent atoms, another mental and

astral body, capable of manifesting his enhanced quali

ties ; the physical permanent atom is planted through

the father in the body of the mother who is to provide

the physical body required by the changeless law of

cause and effect, and these three lower bodies are

nourished and coloured by her corresponding bodies ;

the new personality is thus launched into the mortal


While Intellect has, as its vehicle, the causal body, its

copy in denser matter, the Mind, has the mental body

as its instrument ; the one has abstract thinking as its

activity, the other concrete. The Mind acquires know

ledge by utilising the senses for observations, its percepts,

and by working on these and building them into con

cepts ; its powers are attention, memory, reasoning by

induction and deduction, imagination, and the like.

The Intellect knows, by the assonance of the outside

world with its own nature, and its power is Creation,

the arrangement of matter into bodies for its own natural

products, Ideas. When it sends a flash into the lower

Mind, illuminating its concepts and inspiring its imagina

tion, we call the flash Genius.

Both the causal and mental bodies expand enormously

in the later stages of evolution, and manifest the most

gorgeous radiance of many-coloured lights, glowing

with intense splendour when comparatively at rest,

and sending forth the most dazzling coruscations when

in high activity. Both interpenetrate the lower bodies

and extend beyond their surface, as has already been

stated with regard to the etheric double and the astral

body. The parts of all these bodies of finer matter

which are outside the dense physical body form col

lectively the " aura " of the human being, the luminous

coloured cloud surrounding his dense body. The

etheric portion of the aura can be seen by Dr. Kilner s

1 The reader is advised to refer to the table on p. 25.


apparatus ; an ordinary clairvoyant usually sees this

and the astral portion ; a clairvoyant more highly

developed sees the etheric, astral, and mental portions.

Few are able to see the portion consisting of the causal

body, and fewer still the rare beauty of the intuitional,

and the dazzling light of the spiritual, vehicles.

The clarity, delicacy, and brilliance of the auric colours,

or their opacity, coarseness, and dullness, show the

general stage of advancement of the owner. Changes

of emotion suffuse the astral portion with transitory

colours, as with the rose of love, the blue of devotion,

the grey of fear, the brown of brutality, the sickly

green of jealousy. The pure yellow of intelligence, the

orange of pride, the brilliant green of mental sympathy

and alertness, are equally familiar. Striations, bands,

streaks, flashes, etc., give a multiplicity of forms for

study, all expressive of certain qualities in the mental

and moral character. The child s aura, again, differs

much from that of the adult. But we must pass on,

as space is limited.

The Mind, working in the mental body, produces re

sults thoughts in the astral and physical bodies, in

the latter by using as its instrument the cerebro-spinal

system. In its own world it sends out definite "


quot; thoughts embodied in mental matter, which go

forth into the mental world and may incorporate them

selves in other mental bodies ; its own vibrations, also,

send out undulations in all directions, that cause similar

vibrations in others. Comparatively few people, at

the present stage of evolution, can function freely in

the mental world, clothed only in the higher and the

mental bodies, separated from the physical and astral.

But those who can do so can tell about its phenomena

an important matter, since heaven l is a part of the

mental world, guarded from all unpleasant intrusions.

The inhabitants of the world are the higher ranks of

nature-spirits, called in the East Devas, or Shining

Ones, and by Christians, Hebrews, and Muhammadans

1 Called in the older Theosophical books Devachan, or Sukhavati.


Aogels the lowest Order of the angelic Intelligences.

These are glowing forms with changing shades of ex

quisite colours, whose language is colour, whose motion

is melody.


The heaven-portion of the mental world is filled with

disearnate human beings, who work out into mental and

moral powers the good experiences they have garnered in

their earthly lives. Here the religious devotee is seen,

rapt in adoring contemplation of the Divine Form he

loved on earth, for God reveals Himself in any form dear

to the human heart ; here the musician fills the air with

melodious sounds, cultivating his capacity into higher

power ; here all that love are in close touch with their

beloved, and love gains new strength and depth by

fullest expression ; here the artists of form and colour

work out splendid conceptions in plastic material, re

sponsive to their thought ; here philanthropists shape

great schemes for human helping, architects of plans

to be wrought out when they return to earth. Every

high activity followed on earth, every noble thought and

aspiration, here grow into flowers, flowers which contain

within themselves the seeds which shall later be sown

on earth.. Knowing this, men may in this world prepare

the seeds of experience which shall flower in heaven.

The cultivation of every literary and artistic faculty,

of patient and steadfast love, of unselfish service to

man, of devotion to God, make a full and rich and

fruitful heaven. Those who sow sparingly reap spar

ingly ; while everyone s cup of happiness will be filled

to overflowing, we make our cups large or small here.

The length of our heaven depends on the materials we

can carry through death, and these materials are good

thoughts and pure emotions. It may stretch to fifteen

hundred or two thousand years ; it may be but a few

centuries ; hi the very little developed even less.

When the whole of the experience has been worked


up into faculty, the Man casts off his mental body, and

is then truly himself, living in the causal and the two

higher bodies. If highly developed, he may live awhile

in the higher levels of the mental worlds ; generally his

stay there is very brief, only sufficient to allow him

to see his whole past and to glance over his coming

life, and he quickly begins to put himself down again,

driven by hunger for more experience. The germs of

the developed mental faculties are planted in mental

matter, to form a new mental body ; those of the de

veloped emotional and moral faculties in astral matter,

to form a new astral body, and these are the " innate

faculties," the "

character," which a child brings with

him into the world.


The two higher spheres, the intuitional, in which the

Christ-nature unfolds in the Man, and the spiritual,

cannot be here fully described. The Intuition, the

clear insight into the nature of things that sees the

one Self in all and destroys the sense of separateness

is the faculty of the Wisdom-nature, the supreme

spiritual vision, for which " Nature has no veil in all her

kingdoms". The spiritual sphere, in which the unity

of the human will with the divine is realised, is the last

and highest in the at present manifested system the

monadic and the divine spheres being, as yet, unmanifested.

The wheel of normal human evolution revolves

in three worlds the physical, the intermediate, and

the heavenly : in the first we gather experience ; in the

second we suffer and enjoy according to our life in the

first; in the third we enjoy unalloyed happiness, and

transmute experience into faculty, past suffering into

power. These we bring back, and thus we grow and

evolve, age after age.

Each stage of this seonian evolution may be studied

by quickening the unfolding of the consciousness, and

the growth of the bodies belonging to the different


worlds. No statement made in this Section need be

taken on trust save that about the Monad but the

study which enables verification to be fully made is as

arduous as that of the highest mathematics or astro

nomy. A slight development beyond the normal will,

however, enable etheric and astral facts to be examined,

and such experience may encourage the student to

pursue the further task.


A great service rendered by Theosophy as Science to

the various religions is the explanation it offers of their

several ceremonies and rites. These were originally

planned out by great Occultists in order to convey to

the devoted and the good the influences of the higher

spheres. A " sacrament "

is well defined in the Cate

chism of the Church of England as " the outward and

visible sign of an inward and spiritual grace," and it is

not only a sign that the grace is present, but a means

whereby it may be conveyed to the worshipper. By

the old rules there must be for a sacrament an outer

physical Object, a Sign of Power, and a Word of Power,

and there must also be an Officiant duly qualified ac

cording to the laws of the religion. Thus, in Christian

Baptism., Water is the physical Object, the Sign of

Power is the Cross, the Word of Power is the baptismal

formula : "I baptize thee in the Name of the Father,

and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost" ; the Officiant

is the duly ordained minister. The inward spiritual

grace is the blessing poured out on the child by the

surrounding Angels, his admission to the community of

Christians in this and other worlds, and the welcome

extended to him by the invisible and visible Christian

Church. In the Holy Communion the same principle

is followed, and any clairvoyant, watching the ceremony,

will see a blazing out of light, following the words of

consecration, the light flashing out through the church

and bathing the worshipper, and being appropriated


and drawn in by the really devoted ; it is because of the

tradition of this " real Presence " that the Host is

preserved in Roman Catholic churches, and from it, as

a matter of fact, radiates a constant blessing. Cere

monies performed to help those who have passed on,

the so-called "

dead," are all based on a knowledge of

the facts of the intermediate world, though the persons

who take part in them to-day know very little of their

real bearing on the one for whom they are done. The

daily prayer and meditation, incumbent on every pious

Hindu, are intended to draw down and spread abroad

gracious spiritual influences, attracting the Devas

" the ministry of Angels

" to shed their blessings on

the neighbourhood, on its human, animal, and vegetable


All these things are looked on as "


" by

the ordinary, modern man of the world. Yet, since the

visible world is interpenetrated and surrounded by the

invisible, it is not irrational that the influence of the

latter should play on the former. It was regarded

as a superstition at the close of the eighteenth century

to believe that there was a force which made frogs

legs move when hanging on a wire ; Galvani was much

laughed at for watching them dance as they awaited

the frying-pan, and was called " the frogs dancingmaster

". None the less has the galvanic current linked

continents together. Many a "




the way to the discovery of forces unknown to the

ordinary man. The wise will observe and investigate,

and will study before they reject.



MORALITY has been well defined as " the science of

harmonious relations " l between all living things.

Moral laws are as much laws of Nature as are any laws

affecting physical phenomena, are to be sought in the

same laborious way, and established by the same

methods. As physical hygiene was laid down by ancient

legislators as part of religion,

2 so did they lay down

moral hygiene ; both have been accepted as part of

" revelation " by their followers, but both are based

on the facts of Nature known to these highly developed

men, though not to their people.


We have seen that the teaching of one omnipresent

Life is part of Theosophy; on this Morality is based.

To injure another is to injure yourself, for each is part

of a single whole. The body as a whole is poisoned, if

poison be introduced into any part of it, and all living

things are harmed by harm which is done to one. This

one Life expresses itself in everything by seeking for

Happiness ; everywhere and always, without exception,

Life seeks Happiness, and no suffering is ever volun

tarily borne except as a road to a deeper and more

lasting joy. None seeks aimless suffering, for the mere

sake of suffering ; it is endured only as means to an

end. All religions recognise God as infinite Bliss, and

1 Sandtana Dharma Text-Book, Part III. : Ethics.

8 As in the laws of Manu and of Moses.



union with God, i.e. with perfect Bliss, is sought by all

of them. Man s nature, since he is divine, is also

fundamentally blissful, and he therefore accepts all

happiness as natural, and its coming to him is taken as

needing no justification ; he never asks :

" Why do I

enjoy ?

" But his nature revolts against pain as un

natural, and as needing justification, and he instinctively

demands :

" Why do I suffer ?


Deep, unalloyed,

enduring Bliss is the goal of Life ; the perfect satisfac

tion of evfery part of the being. The fleeting will-o -thewisp

of earthly pleasure is often mistaken for the glow

of the Sun of Bliss, and then man suffers and learns.

" For God has a plan, and that plan is evolution."


If the part sets itself against the whole, it must suffer,

and all the sufferings of men are due to their ignorance

of their own nature, and to their disregard, also due to

ignorance, of the laws of the Nature in the midst of

which they live.


If evolution is God s plan, then we can gain a definite

criterion of Right and Wrong. The scientist will say :

That which helps forward evolution is Right ; that

which hinders it is Wrong. The religionist will say :

That which is according to the divine Will is Right ;

that which is against it is Wrong. Both are expressing

exactly the same idea, for the divine Will is evolution.

By studying evolution we find that its first half has been

developing an ever greater and greater separation the

aim has been the production of the Individual ; we find

that now, beginning the second half, we are moving

towards the integration of individuals into a Unity.

The Hindus call these processes the Path of Forthgoing

and the Path of Return, and there are no more ex

pressive names. Man s deepest instincts, showing

themselves in the foremost of his race and instinct

1 At the Feet of the Master, by J. Krishnamurti (Alcyone) p. 7.


is the Voice of Life are now seeking for Brotherhood,

beyond which lies Unity, the building of many parts

into a perfect whole. Hence all that makes for unity

is Right ; all that makes against it is Wrong.


The next step is that Happiness is essentially a

feeling ; it is due to a sense of the increase of life in us ;

we are happy when our life expands, when it becomes

more ; we suffer when our life diminishes, when it be

comes less.1 Love brings about union, and thus moreness

; hate causes separation, and hence lessness. We

have here the two Root Emotions, Love and Hate, both

expressions of Desire the manifestation of the aspect

of Will which is seen throughout the manifested worlds

as Attraction and Repulsion, the Builder and the

Destroyer of universes, systems, and worlds, as well as

of states, families, and individuals. Out of these two

Root Emotions spring all Virtues and Vices ; every

Virtue is an expression of Love, universalised, and

established by right reason as a permanent mode of

consciousness ; every Vice is an expression of Hate,

universalised, and established by wrong reason as a

permanent mode of consciousness ;



" and


wrong " have already been defined. This will at once

be understood by an illustration drawn from the family,

and we may premise that each of us, in Society as in the

family, is surrounded by three, and only three, classes

his superiors, his equals, his inferiors, with each of

which he has relations. In a happy family, Love unites

all the members ; Love, looking upwards to the heads

of the household, is the emotion of reverence ; Love,

looking round the circle of brothers and sisters, is the

emotion of affection ; Love, looking downwards on the

group of dependents, is the emotion of beneficence.

1 On the whole of this subject there is no better book than

The Science of the Emotions, by Bhagavan Das, a well-known Theosophical



These emotions spring up spontaneously in the "



family, the family where "



feeling rules, and

" love is the fulfilling of the law ". Where love rules,

laws are not needed. Outside the family, when men

enter into relations with the general public, the attitude

taken spontaneously in the family by Love must be

reproduced outside deliberately by Virtue. Looking

upwards as to God, the King, the Aged the emotion

of Love as reverence becomes the Virtues of Reverence,

Obedience, Loyalty, Respect, and the like, all fixed

attitudes of mind, or permanent modes of conscious

ness, towards the persons, whoever they may be, who

are recognised as superiors, spiritually, intellectually,

morally, socially, physically. Looking around on our

equals, the emotion of Love as affection becomes the

Virtues of Honour, Courtesy, Fairness, Friendliness,

Helpfulness, and the like, fixed attitudes of mind to

wards all, as before. To our inferiors, the emotion of

Love as beneficence becomes the Virtues of Protection,

Kindness, Courtesy, Readiness to assist, to share with,

and the like. The principle once grasped, the student

can work out its myriad applications ; Hate, with its

three main divisions of Fear, Pride, and Scorn, may be

similarly treated.

Every human being, living in Society, is related in

evitably, by the mere fact of his being there, to all around

him, and this makes him the centre of a web of obliga

tions, of duties ; to give to each related person his due

is to be a "


" man, and a source of social unity ;

to refuse to any his due is to be a " bad " man, and a

source of social disunity. Hence to know Duty and to

do it is goodness ; to know it intuitively and to do it

spontaneously is perfection.

While Life showing itself emotionally is Love, seen

intellectually it is Truth. For lack of understanding this,

controversies have arisen as to whether Love or Truth

should be the foundation of Morality. But they are one

essentially, as Life is one. Bhishma, a Master of Duty,

said that virtues are "forms of Truth," and that is

indubitably so ; Truth is the very basis of intellectual


character, as is Love of moral character ; as Love de

mands the presence of others for its expression while

Truth does not, it naturally rules the science of our

harmonious relations with others, and thus flowers into

virtues. " God is Love," says the Christian ;

" Brah

man is Truth," says the Hindu. Both speak the fact ;

seen from below, Love and Truth may look different ;

seen from above, they are one.


The great Teachers of humanity have formulated

certain universal ethical precepts, such as :

" To do

good to another is right ; to injure another is wrong."

" Do to others as you would that they should do to you ;

do not to others as you would not that they should

do to you."

" Love one another."

" What doth the

Lord thy God require of thee, but to do justly, and to

love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God ?

" x

All moral teachings inspired by this spirit are parts of

the Divine Wisdom, of Theosophy. They need no

justification to the mind, for they obviously tend to

promote Happiness.

But much light is thrown on the rationale of less

obvious precepts by Theosophy ; thus to return good

for evil is not, at first glance, reasonable. " How then

will you recompense good ?

" asked Confucius. But

it is right. We have seen that changes in consciousness

are accompanied by vibrations of matter, and that such

vibrations are sympathetically reproduced by neigh

bouring bodies. If a man is feeling angry, or depressed,

or revengeful, his astral body will vibrate in assonance

with his mood. The astral body of anyone coming near

him will be impinged on by these vibrations, and will

begin to vibrate in unison with them, these vibrations

then producing in the second person a feeling of anger,

or depression, or revenge, as the case may be. He will

1 A large number of extracts from the Scriptures of great re

ligions may be found in the Universal Text-Boole of Religion and

Morals, Part II.


thus strengthen the vibrations produced in his astral

body and will return them reinforced, strengthening

those of the first, and this fatal interchange will go on,

increasing the evil. But if the second person, under

standing the law, grips his astral body with his will,

prevents it from reproducing the vibrations which strike

on it, and imposes on it a contrary set of vibrations,

those which accompany a feeling of gentleness, cheer

fulness, or forgiveness, he will quiet down the vibrations

caused by evil emotion, and presently change them to

their opposite. Therefore the Lord Buddha taught :

" Hatred ceaseth not by hatred at any time ; hatred

ceaseth by love." This is as certain as that a red ray

of light will quench a green ray,

and leave stillness

absence of light vibrations. It is a law of Nature, and

one that can readily be verified by experiment. To

follow this law is to substitute a harmonious relation for

an inharmonious, i.e. to be moral.

Theosophy asserts as an ethical code the universal pre

cepts of the great Teachers, and studies their rationale

scientifically, as above, and historically, in their effects

on human evolution and human happiness. It sees

then1 verification in the disasters that follow the neglect

of these precepts, as much as in the security and

comfort which follow their observance, even though

that observance has never been more than partial,

except in the example set by the great Teachers Them

selves. Its morality is therefore eclectic ; in the garden

of the world it culls the fairest and most fragrant

flowers, planted by the great Teachers, and binding

these into one exquisite bouquet, it names it

" Theosophy

as Morality ".


In order to inspire moral conduct in Theosophists, it

points to the great Teachers as Examples, and inculcates

the forming of a moral Ideal and the practice of medita

tion thereon. An ideal is a synthesis of true fixed ideas,

intended to be an object of attentive and sustained

thought, and thus to influence conduct. By the laws


of thought to be treated in Section III. the effect

of such thought is to transform the thinker into the

likeness of his ideal, and thus to build up a noble char

acter. Along this line of moral evolution Theosophists

seek to guide all aspirants, trusting

" not to the law of

a carnal commandment, but to the power of an endless

life ". We fix our gaze on the World-Teachers, and seek

so to live that some ray of Their moral splendour may

take embodiment in us, and that we also may, in our

humble measure, lighten the darkness of the world.


In the older world the Beautiful was placed on a level

with the Good and the True, and the cult of Beauty

made fair the common lives of men. Pythagoras spoke

of the Arts as making " the difference between the

barbarian and the man,"

x and Art and pure Literature

are the means of culture ; they polish the stone, after

Science and Philosophy have hewn the rough product

of the quarry into shape. Further East than Greece,

Beauty held a similar place in civilisation, as it did also

in Egypt and in the great Atlantean civilisations in the

Americas. In fact no civilisation that the world has

ever known, until that of the nineteenth century, has

set the Beautiful aside as a luxury for the wealthy,

instead of spreading it far and wide over the whole mass

of the population as one of the ordinary necessities for

decent human life. In nearly every European country

the arts and crafts of the peasantry are almost killed

out ; their old dress, suitable and comely, is being

disused, and replaced by miserable copies of grotesque

fashions set in Paris and London. The result is that

the manual labouring class has been entirely vulgarised,

has lost its inborn sense of Beauty to which its crafts

taken up for pastime in leisure hours in the past so

eloquently testify and, in the losing, has become

piteously coarse and ill-mannered. The spread of

civilised ugliness is threatening the Beauty which still

1 See Section V.,-p. 74.


remains to the world in the common life of the further

East, and the destructive change may be summed up

in a single fact, that the disused kerosene oil-tin is

taking the place of the admirably wrought brass or clay

vessel for bringing water from the well to the house.

When the village girl, who now carries this tin atrocity

on her head, drops her graceful sari with its exquisite

vegetable dye, and puts on the ugly aniline-dyed skirt and

blouse of the West, she will have completed her own

vulgarisation, and the triumph of western civilisation.


From the standpoint of Theosophy, the sense of the

Beautiful is a priceless part of the emotional nature,

and is to it what Truth is to the Intellect and Goodness

to the Intuition. It sees Beauty as the Law of Mani

festation, to which all objects should conform. Ugliness

is against Nature, unnatural, intolerable. Nature is

ever striving to hide it away in order to transform it.

She covers all that is ugly with her wealth of Beauty ;

over a disused slag-heap she trails her creepers ; a broken

wall she festoons with her honeysuckle-bines, and tosses

over it a wreath of pink-faced roses ; she plants the

wayside ditch with fragrant violets, and draws a sheet

of anemones and wild hyacinths over the neglected spaces

of the woods. With her myriad voices she preaches

that Beauty is the essential condition of divine, and

therefore of all perfect, work.

Religion has ever been the foster-mother of Art ; the

Egyptian faith gave Philse to the world ;

l Hinduism

gave the mighty fanes of Madura and Chidambaran ;

Greece gave the Parthenon and many another gem ;

Islam gave the Alhambra, the Pearl Mosque, and the

Taj Mahal ; Christianity the noble Gothic cathedrals

to say nothing of the music, painting, sculpture,

oratory, that have glorified the life of man. Art is un

thinkable without Religion ; the most exquisite archi

tecture has been devised for temples, and on them

1 Modern civilisation has drowned it 1


other buildings have been modelled. If it has decayed,

it is because Religion has passed so much out of ordinary

life, and with the lack of its inspiration Art has become

imitative instead of creative. The new Theosophic

impulse will bring about a new blossoming of Art, and

already its fragrance is borne on the breeze blowing

from the future.


Imitation, however perfect and enjoyable, is not the

highest Art, from the Theosophical standpoint. Forms

are built by nature-spirits and lower Angels out of the

matter penetrated with the Life of the LOGOS ; they

built round His thought-forms, materialising His ideas.

Looking at an exquisite flower, we, who are human, can

see a little more of the divine thought in it than the

less developed nature-spirit could see and embody.

But the Artist he can see far more than we ; he sees

the many-sided thought of which the flower-form is only

a facet ; he sees the ideal, and it is that which we ask

him to show us. Rafaelle painted a woman with a

child in her arms ; we have seen many women carrying

their infant sons. But the painter of the San Sisto

Madonna saw the ideal Mother and the ideal Child,

infinite tenderness and protection in the Mother, ex

quisite sweetness and candid simplicity in the Child.

He saw not only mother and child, but Motherhood and

Childhood, the eternal perfection of the Idea, and he

painted it for the wonder and the love of every succeed

ing generation. And we blind ones can now see the

Madonna and the Babe in every mother and child, and

the whole world is fairer because Rafaelle lived and saw.

Unless Theosophy can give a new inspiration to Art,

it will have failed in part of its purpose ; for Beauty is

one of the most potent instruments for quickening

evolution, and harmony, without which life cannot be

happy, finds its natural expression in Art. Perfection in

form must accompany Perfection in thought.



PHILOSOPHY is an explanation of Life, constructed by

the Mind and accepted as true by the Intellect. Without

an explanation which satisfies the reason, a man remains

restless and discontented. The unintelligibility of life

is torture to the thoughtful ; one cannot rest in the

midst of a whirl of forces and of events, a seething

chaos, which throws up fragments which cannot be

fitted into a rational whole. The Mind imperatively

demands order, succession, causal connections, the

stately rhythm of purposeful movements, the relation

of past to present, of present to future. To understand

is the deepest instinct in the Mind of Man, and it can

never rest satisfied until this understanding is obtained.

Man can suffer patiently, struggle perseveringly, endure

heroically, if he feels within rum a purpose, sees before

him a goal. But if he cannot see his way, does not

know his end, is baffled by causes he does not understand,

and buffeted by forces which whirl out at him from

darkness, strike him, and then whirl into darkness once

more, he is apt to break out into wild revolt, into savage

rebellion, and to waste his strength in aimless blows.

Ajax, fighting in the dark with his frantic appeal to the

Gods :

" If our fate be death,

Give light, and let us die,"

is a symbol of humanity, struggling in the night of

ignorance and passionately crying out to " whatever

Gods there be " to send him light, even though light

mean death.




Men have striven to understand the mysteries of

existence by approaching them from one of three

mutually opposed view-points :

(1) All comes forth from Matter, the One Existence,

and this, from its own inherent energy, produces all

forms, and gives birth through them to life ; as Professor

Tyndall said in his famous Belfast address, we must

" see in matter the promise and potency of every form

of life ". Thought is the result of the activity of certain

arrangements of matter :

" The brain produces thought,"

said Karl Vogt,

" as the liver produces bile ". With the

dissolution of the form the life vanishes, and it is as idle

to ask where " it


is, as to ask where the flame is when

the candle burns out. The flame was only the result

of combustion, and with the ceasing of combustion the

flame necessarily ceases also. All materialistic philo

sophies are built on this basis.

(2) All comes forth from Spirit, pure mind, the One

Existence, and matter is merely a creation of the Spirit

engaged in thought. There is really no matter ; it is

an illusion, and if the Spirit rises above this illusion he

is free, self-sufficing, omnipotent. He imagines himself

separate, and is separate ; he imagines objects, and is

surrounded by them ; he imagines pain, and he suffers ;

he imagines pleasure, and he enjoys. Let him sink into

himself, and all the universe will fade away as a dream,

and " leave not a wrack behind ". All idealistic philo

sophies are built on this basis, with more or less thorough

ness in carrying it out.

(3) Spirit and Matter are two aspects of One Exist

ence, the All, coming forth from the One together,

united as inseparably during manifestation as the back

and front of the same object, merging into Oneness

again at the close of a period of manifestation. In the

All exist simultaneously all that has been, all that is,

all that can be. in one Eternal Present. In this fullness

arises a VOICE which is a WORD, a LOGOS, God making


Himself manifest. That WORD separates out, from the

All, such Ideas as He selects for His future universe, and

arranges them within Himself according to His Will ;

He limits Himself by His own thought, thus creating

the "


" of the universe-to-be whether

Solar System, congery of Solar Systems, congery of

congeries, etc. Within this Ring are the Ideas, everbegotten

eternally of the ceaseless Motion, which is the

One Life, within the Stillness which is its opposite and

supports all. The Motion is the Root of Spirit, which

will, when manifest, be Time, or changes in consciousness ;

the stillness is the Root of Matter, the omnipresent


^Ether," immobile, all-sustaining, all-pervading, which

will, when manifest, be Space. All Theosophic phil

osophies are built on this basis, Spirit and Matter

being regarded as two manifested aspects of the One,

the Absolute, out of Time and Space.1

The method of putting these truths will differ much

with different thinkers. H. P. Blavatsky has presented

them with great force, but with some obscurity of

language, hi the beginning of The Secret Doctrine.

Bhagavan Das makes a singularly profound and lucid

statement of them in his Science of Peace, where he

postulates the Self, the Not-Self or Spirit and Matter

and the Relation between them, as the great Trinity,

the Ultimate^ of Thought, collapsing into the One.


The LOGOS shows Himself in His universe or system

under three aspects the "Persons" of the Christian

Trinity those of Will, Wisdom (or Knowledge-Love),

and Creativeness (or Activity). The human Monad is a

fragment of his divine Parent, and reproduces these three

aspects in Himself, manifesting them in Man as Spirit.

Hence the human spiritual Will, being part of the one Will,

is irresistible Power, when the Spirit realises his unity

1 See for the further working out of this, Section VI., "A few

Details about Systems and Worlds ".


with the LOGOS. Hence to the human spiritual Wisdom

nothing in Nature can be veiled. Hence by the human

spiritual Creativeness all can be achieved.

It is this last aspect in the human Trinity which can

build up all that Wisdom can conceive and that Will can

determine. As Intellect in the subtler worlds and as

Mind in the lower, it stretches out into the cosmos, to

know, to understand. By this, whose " nature is

knowledge," Man becomes aware of all which is outside

himself, the " Not Self," in the Hindu phrase. We have

seen that by the use of bodies Man may know the outer

universe, and consciousness may become aware of its en

vironment ; beginning to borrow Myers terminology

with the knowledge of its own earth, as the planet

ary consciousness, it may stretch out to a knowledge

of its universe, as the cosmic consciousness. The reason

demands this as a necessary truth, not because it is

testified to by the giants of spiritual genius, but because

there are growths in the planetary consciousness which

are unintelligible, causeless, and useless unless there is

a cosmic consciousness which they adumbrate, and

towards which they strive. Religion, Art, unselfish

self-sacrificing Love are, as they have been called,

bye-products and follies, if we are but gnats of a day,

dancing in sunshine, scattered in storm ; if we build

civilisations with infinite toil and suffering only that

they may perish ; if all that will be left as blurred

record of humanity shall be a frozen planet whirling

in space till shattered, the weary purposeless labour to

be ever renewed, and its results ever destroyed. To

the Theosophic philosophy Man is an eternal spiritual

Intelligence, whose root is in God, and his countless

activities develop his own inherent powers, which none

can annihilate unless he himself casts any away as of

no further use to him, and even then they remain in the

Eternal Memory. To such a Being, universes are but

instructive toys, serving his education, and they may

crash into splinters without disturbing his serene

equanimity, for they are only means to an end. The


universe as a treadmill, grinding out nothing, makes

existence a burden, life a perpetual punishment, leaving

us not even an Imposer of the burden whose pity we

might move, or a Judge to whose clemency we might

appeal to mitigate the punishment. Theosophy sees

Man as an unfolding Power, going from strength to

strength, erring only that he may learn, suffering only

that he may grow strong, a radiant, rejoicing, vic

torious Life, whose "

growth and splendour have no


Philosophically considered, Man, like all else, is com

posed of but two factors, Spirit and Matter. The various

bodies which occult Science describes are, from the

philosophical view-point, his material sheath. They

are, in their totality, merely his Body. Man is a spiritual

Intelligence in a Body. The constituents which go to

form this Body physical, emotional, mental, intel

lectual, intuitional, spiritual forms of matter are no

more germane to the study than are the solids, liquids,

gases, and ethers that compose the physical body of



Thought being the manifestation of Creativeness,

the third aspect of the human triplicity, Theosophic

philosophy applies it to quicken human evolution.

The application of the general laws of the evolution of

mind to this quickening of the evolution of a particular

consciousness is called in the East yoga. The word

means "

union," and is used to indicate the conscious

union of the particular with the universal Self, and all

the efforts leading to that consummation. The method

of yoga is purely scientific, the knowledge of the laws

of mental and intellectual evolution having been gained

by observation and established by experiment. It has

been proved, and can ever be re-proved, that thought,

concentrating itself attentively on any idea, builds that

idea into the character of the thinker, and a man may


thus create in himself any desirable quality by sus

tained and attentive thinking meditation.

The careless play of Thought on undesirable ideas

and qualities is an active danger, creating a tendency

towards such undesirable things, and leading to actions

embodying them. " Action "

is a triplicity ; desire

conceives it, thought plans it, and the final act is the

embodiment of both. Hence that final act is often pre

cipitated by favourable circumstances when desire has

grown strong, and thought has completely sketched the

carrying out ; the mental action precedes the physical,

and when a man has dallied in thought with the idea

of a good or of an evil action, he may find himself per

forming it in the outer world even before he realises

what he is doing ; when the gate of opportunity has

swung open, the mental action rushes out into the


Concentrated mental activity may be directed to the

mental, emotional, and physical bodies, recreating them

to an extent proportional to the energy, perseverance,

and concentration employed. All schools of healing

Christian Science, Mental Science utilise this powerful

agency in obtaining their results, and their utility

depends on the knowledge of the practitioner as to the

force which he is employing, and as to the environment

in which he is using it the environment consisting

largely of the bodies of his patient. Innumerable

successes prove the existence of the force that is wielded,

and failures do not show that the force is non-existent,

but only that the manipulation of it was not skilful,

or could not evoke sufficient of it for the task in hand.

Thought-power being recognised in Theosophic phil

osophy as the one Creator, it is seen as working in

Evolution, and as having planned for the evolution of

the human consciousness the admirable method of

Reincarnation, under the Law of Action and Reaction,

called in the East Karma.



The object of Man s assumption of bodies Incarna

tion has already been explained ; we have seen that

his three higher bodies form his permanent clothing,

and that they grow and increase with the unfolding of

his consciousness. We have seen also that the three

lower bodies are temporary, existing through a definite

life-cycle, spent by him in three worlds the earth, the

intermediate world, and heaven ; with his return to

the earth he assumes new bodies, and this is Reincarna

tion. The necessity for this lies in the comparative

density of the matter of which the lower worlds are

composed ; the bodies made of this can only grow and

expand within certain limits, far narrower than those

which belong to the subtler bodies ; stretched beyond

these, by the constant unfolding of consciousness, the}?-

lose their elasticity, and can no longer be used ; more

over, they grow old by this constant stretching, and

wear out. When the consciousness, at the end of a

cycle of growth, has definitely established itself in its

new stage of evolution, it needs new bodies shaped for

the expression of its enhanced powers. If this were not

arranged for in the Plan we should be like children

enclosed in iron armour, and stunted in their growth

by its non-expansiveness. Children " grow out of their

clothes," and we give them new ones ; we grow out of

our bodies, and are given new ones by our Father, the


The method is simple enough ; a seed of divine con

sciousness is sown in the soil of human life ; nourished

by that soil, which is experience, stimulated by the

sunshine of joy, expanded by the rain of sorrow, it

swells and burgeons out into plant, flower, and fruit,

until it attains the likeness of the parent tree.

Put without metaphor : a human Spirit, a germinal

life, enters the babe of a savage ; he has scarcely any

intelligence, no moral sense; he lives there for



forty or fifty years, dominated by desires, robs, murders.


finally is murdered. He passes into the intermediate

world, meets many old enemies, suffers, sees dimly that

his body was murdered as a result of murdering others,

comes to a vague conclusion unfavourable to murder ;

this is very faintly impressed on his consciousness ; he

enjoys the results of any dawning love he may have

felt ; he comes back a trifle more "



than at his first birth. This is repeated over and over

again, till he has gradually but definitely arrived at

conclusions that murder and theft and other such

actions cause unhappiness, and love and kindness cause

happiness ; he has thus acquired a conscience, though

there is not much of it, and it is easily overborne by any

strong desire. The interval between births is at first

very short, but it gradually lengthens, as his thoughtpower

increases, until the regular round of the three

worlds is established ; in the first he gathers experience ;

in the second he suffers for his mistakes ; in the third

he enjoys the outcome of his good thoughts and emo

tions, and here also he works the whole of his good

mental and moral experiences into mental and moral

faculties ; in this heavenly world, further, he studies

his past life, and his sufferings, due to his mistakes,

bring him knowledge, and thus power.

" Every pain

that I suffered in one body became a power which I

wielded in the next."

l His stay in the third world

increases in length and richness of yield as he progresses.

At last he approaches the term of his long pilgrimage ;

he enters the Path, passes through the great Initiations,

and reaches human perfection.

2 For him, Reincarna

tion is over, for he has spiritualised matter for his own

use, and while he may wear it, it cannot blind or rule him.

Looking at this long-turning wheel of Births and

Deaths, a man may feel a sense of weariness. But it

must be remembered that each life-period is new to the

one living through it ; by a wise arrangement, a man

1 Edward Carpenter, Towards Democracy, " The Struggle of Man

with Satan."

2 See Section IV., " The Pat>> *n Perfection and Divine Men."


down here forgets his past, at least until he is strong

enough to bear its weight, and as Goethe said rejoicingly,

we " return bathed " and fresh. There is no sense of

weariness in the child, joyously springing out to meet his

new life, but a sense of glad vitality, of eager enjoyment,

of ever-fresh delights. A wayworn soul, entering into

a child s body, weighed down by the memory of past

struggles and blunders, of love and hates, would be a

poor exchange for the gladness of healthy childhood.

Every life is a new opportunity, and if we have wasted

one life, we have always

" another chance ". Re

incarnation is essentially a Gospel, good news, for it

makes an end of despair, encourages effort, cheers with

the proclamation of final success, and ensures the per

manence of every fragment, every seed, of good in us,

and time enough for the least evolved to flower into


Its value as an explanation of life is untold. The

criminal, the lowest and vilest, the poorest, foulest speci

men of our race, is only a baby-soul, coming into a

savage body, and thrown into a civilisation for which

he is unfit if left to follow his own instincts, but which

will provide for him a field of rapid evolution if his elders

take him in hand and guide him firmly and gently. He

is now at the stage at which the average commonplace

men were standing a million or so years ago, and he will

evolve in the future as they have evolved in the past.

There is no partiality shown to those who are situated

differently from him; there is only difference of age.

The inborn inequality in men need no longer distress us

the inequality between the splendidly shaped and the

cripple, the healthy and the diseased, the genius and the

fool, the saint and the criminal, the hero and the coward.

True, they are born thus, and bring with them into the

world these inequalities which they cannot transcend.

But they are either much younger in experience, or

have built themselves as they are under the laws of

nature ; every weakness will disappear in time, oppor

tunity after opportunity will come to them, every height


is open to them to climb with the strength necessary

for its scaling.

The knowledge of Reincarnation guides us, as we shall

see in Section V., in dealing with social problems. It

shows us also how the social instincts have evolved,

why self-sacrifice is the law of evolution for man, how

we may plan out our own future evolution under natural

laws. It teaches us that qualities evolved from earthly

experience are returned to earth for the service of man,

and how every effort brings its full result under unerring

law. By giving him sufficient time, it puts into man s

hands the power to make his destiny as he wills, and to

create himself after his ideals. It points to a future of

ever-growing power and wisdom, and rationalises our

hope of immortality. It makes the body the instrument

of the Spirit instead of his owner, and removes the fear

that as the Spirit required a physical body in order to

come into existence at birth, he is likely to perish when

deprived of that body by death. As Hume said, it is

the only theory of immortality that the philosopher

can look at.

Memory of past lives has its seat in the Intellect not

in the Mind, in the permanent individual not in the

mortal person. We saw in Section I. that the lower

bodies perished at and after death, and that new ones

were built wherewith to enter on the new life-period.

These have not passed through the experiences of past

lives ; how, then, should the memory of these abide

in them ? The man who would remember his past

must become conscious in the causal body, wherein the

means of memory reside, and learn further to send down

the memories garnered therein into his consciousness

working in the brain. Through the practice of yoga

this may be done, and he can then unroll and read the

imperishable scroll of the past.

We are in the habit of regarding Reincarnation from

the view-point of the mortal nature of man, and thus

seeing a succession of lives, which we describe as "re

incarnations". But it might sometimes be well to


consider the question from the view-point of the Eternal

Man, the Monad manifesting as the triple Spirit. Thus

looked at Reincarnation disappears, unless we say that

a tree reincarnates with each spring when it puts out a

new crop of leaves, or a man reincarnates when he puts

on a new coat. This personality, which looms so large

down here, is only a new set of leaves, or a new coat.

The Man knows himself &s one Man all through, with an

unbroken continuity of consciousness, with a single

identity, and an uninterrupted memory. The days of

his mortal life have for him no more weariness than the

long succession of mortal days have for our consciousness

working in the physical body ; we rise in the morning

and go forth to interests ever renewed, and each new

day brings its own pleasures and pains which we live

through with zest. The fact that our physical body is

always changing does not trouble us a bit ; we are the

same, inside it. And so, in the larger life, we are the

same, the ever-living, ever-working Spirits. When we

realise this, pain and weariness drop away, for we see

them as belonging to that which is not ourselves. To

stand in the fixed centre, and to look at the whirling

wheel from there, is very refreshing and very useful.

If any of my readers feel tired, I would invite them to

seek for awhile this Place of Peace.


Reincarnation is carried on under the Law of Action

and Reaction Karma. The word karma means action,

and we have seen above that every action is a triplicity.

The Hindu, who has studied psychology for thousands

of years, analyses action as made up of three factors :

thought, stimulated by desire, plans out and shapes it ;

will (or desire) draws the mental energies together and

directs them towards accomplishment ; the act itself takes

form in the mental world. It is then ready for mani

festation, and is, as it were, pressing outwards towards

embodiment ; it is thrown out into the physical world,


when the thinker can create an opportunity by his will

power, or when an opportunity presents itself. It is

then precipitated as a visible act. The whole process is

regarded by the Hindu as a triple unity, and he calls it


Karma," action. The clear understanding of this is

needed for the grasping of the three subsidiary laws

which affect our future destiny.

But first it is necessary to realise that karma is a law

of nature, and not an arbitrary enactment which may

be changed at will, and that it brings about results,

but does not reward or punish. A law of nature is not

a command, but a relation, an invariable sequence.

It does not reward or punish, but yields invariable, and

therefore foreseeable, results.

It may be stated generally as follows : Where A and

B are in a certain relation to each other, C will follow.

Suppose we object to C ; we must keep A and B out

of that relation. Nature does not say :

" You must

have C." You must have it, if A and B are in a certain

relation to each other ; but if you can keep A and B

out of that relation by any device by the interposition

of some force, some obstacle C will not appear. Hence

the better we understand Nature, the more can we have

our own way in the midst of her laws ; every law of

Nature is an enabling force to the man of understanding,

though a compelling force to the ignorant ; we are

perfectly free to balance these forces against each other,

to neutralise those which are against our purpose

while we leave free to act those only which will accom

plish it. It was truly said :

" Nature is conquered by

obedience." The ignorant man is her slave and her

plaything ; the man of knowledge is her conqueror

and her king.

Karma is a Law of Nature ; it compels the ignorant,

but it gives freedom to the wise. The three subsidiary

expressions of it that bear most on our destiny are :

" Thought builds character "


" Desire attracts its

object, and creates opportunity for grasping it



"Action causes a favourable or unfavourable environ64


ment according as it has brought happiness or unhappiness

to others." (1) We have already seen the

first, in dealing with thought-power ; anyone who

chooses to spend five minutes regularly every morning

in steady thought on any virtue which he does not

possess will find that virtue after a time the length of

which depends on the steadiness and strength of his

thought showing itself forth in his character. (2) A

strong and firm wish brings about its own accomplish

ment ; this is very often seen within the limits of a

single Ufe ; a review of several successive lives places

the existence of the law beyond doubt. (3) Those who

make others happy, reap happiness for themselves ;

happiness is found by not seeking it, and ever eludes

those who grasp at it most passionately. Most strongly

does this, again, come out in reviewing a succession of

lives ; the man who has caused widespread happiness

is born into prosperous circumstances, while the man

who has caused unhappiness appears in an unfortunate

environment. But so exactly does the law work

" Thought builds character " that if he has caused the

happiness from a selfish motive his selfishness will

result in a nature which is itself miserable, even when

surrounded by all that should make life pleasant :

" Though the mills of God grind slowly yet they grind exceeding

small ;

Though He stands and waits with patience, with exactness

grinds He all."

Karma being the result, at any given time, of all the

thoughts, desires, and actions of the past, manifested

in our character, our opportunities, and our environment,

it limits our present : If we are mentally dull, we cannot

suddenly become brilliant ; if we have few opportunities,

we cannot always create them ; if we are crippled, we

cannot be hale. But as we created, so can we change it ;

and our present thoughts, desires, and actions are chang

ing our future Karma day by day. Moreover, it is well

to remember, especially if we are facing a coming disaster,


that the Karma behind us is as mixed as our present

thoughts, desires, and actions. A review of any day

will show that it contains some good thoughts and some

bad, some noble desires and some base, some kindly

actions and some unkindly. Each kind has its full

effect, the good making good Karma and the bad making

bad. Hence when we face misfortune we have behind

us a stream of force which will aid us in turning it aside,

and another which weakens us. One of these may be

overwhelmingly strong, helping or hindering us ; if so,

our present effort will play but a small part in the

result ; but very often the two forces are fairly equally

balanced, and a strong present effort will turn the scale.

A knowledge of Karma should thus strengthen effort,

not paralyse it as unfortunately is sometimes the case

with those whose knowledge is very small. It must

never be forgotten that Karma, being a law of Nature,

leaves us just as much freedom as we are able to take.

To talk of "

interfering with Karma "

is to talk nonsense,

except in the sense that one may talk of interfering with

gravitation. In that sense we may interfere with both

just as much as we can. If our muscles are weak from

fever, we may be unable to walk upstairs against gravi

tation ; but if they are strong, we can run up gaily,

defying gravitation to keep us in the hall below. So

with Karma. Once more, Nature does not command

anyone to do one thing or another ; she lays down in

variable conditions under which things can, or cannot,

be done. It is for us to find out the conditions which

will enable us to succeed, and then all her forces work

with us and accomplish our desires. " Yoke your

waggon on to a star," said Emerson, and then the force

of the star will draw your waggon to the place where

you would have it.

One other practical point is of grave importance. We

may in the past have made some special karmic force

for evil so strong that we are unable to overbear it by

any force we can bring to bear against it to-day. Under

such circumstances we are driven to do wrong, even



when we wish to do right, and we feel ourselves to be as

helpless as a straw driven before the wind.

Never mind. We have still resources. When the

temptation to evil comes, we may meet it in one of two

ways. Feeling that we must yield, we may yield supinely,

and thus forge another link in the deadly chain of evil

habit. But the knower of Karma says : "I have

created this hateful weakness by countless yieldings to

low desire ; I set against it the higher form of desire,

my Will, and I refuse to yield." Battling against the

temptation, the man is forced surely back, step by step,

until he falls over the precipice, and yields in act, though

not in Will. To the eye of the world, he has fallen, a

helpless victim in a hopeless slavery. To the eye of the

knower of Karma, he has, by his gallant struggle, filed

away much of the chain that is still round his limbs ;

a few more such "

failures," and the chain will snap,

and he will be free. A habit made by many wrong

desires cannot be destroyed by one effort of right desire,

except in those rare cases in which the God within

awakes, and with one touch of the fiery spiritual Will

burns up the chains. Such cases of " conversion " are

on record, but most men tread a longer path.

The more we understand Karma, the more it becomes

a power in our hands, instead of a power, which binds

them. Here, perhaps more than in anything else,


knowledge is power ".



WE have seen that Spirit, as Man, has three aspects,

manifesting himself as Will, Intuition, and Intellect,

in the three subtlest bodies. But the word is also used

in a narrower sense, denoting the first of the three

aspects, that which is manifested in the highest world

of our fivefold system the spiritual, or nirvanic, world,

where his manifestation is Will, or Power. Often, also,

the word is used to denote the two higher aspects by

being made to include Intuition, and no objection can

be raised to this. The two aspects indeed represent

the "

spiritual nature " of the human being, as Intellect

and Mind represent his Intelligence, the Emotions his

Feelings, and the Body his instrument of Action. We

have seen that as this diversion marks out the four

great departments of human thought the scientific, the

ethico-artistic, the philosophical, and the religious it

is therefore a convenient one. But for the sake of

perfect clearness I shall use the word "


" to denote

the Monad clothed in an atom of the highest manifested

world, and the word " Intuition " to denote him clothed

in an additional atom of the next lower one.

The word "


" covers Man s search for God

and God s answer to the searching. God s answer is

His Self-revelation to the seeking Spirit who is Man.

As the atmosphere surrounds us and interpenetrates us,

but we remain unconscious of its presence though our

very life depends on it, so the Universal Spirit surrounds

and interpenetrates the particularised Spirit, and the

latter knows not Him on whom his life depends :

" Closer is He than breathing, nearer than hanr>s and feet."



"To know God "

is, then, the essence of Religion, as

we have seen that all religions testify ;

l all else is sub

ordinate, and the man who thus knows is the Mystic,

the Gnostic, the Theosophist. The names are indeed

borne by many, but only

" those who know " can wear

them in their full significance.

" God is immanent in



is the statement of the truth in. Nature

which makes such knowledge possible.

" God is all and

in all "

is the Christian way of putting the same truth ;

though S. Paul puts it in the future, the Mystic puts it

in the present. What does it mean ?


It means that the essence of Religion is this recogni

tion of God everywhere. The true Theosophist sees in

each a portion of the divine Splendour. In the stability of

mountains, in the might of crashing billows, in the rush

of whirling winds, he sees His Strength. In the starstrewn

depths of space, in the wide stretchings of deserts,

he sees His Immensity. In the colours of flowerspangled

meadows, in the rippling laughter of brooklets,

in the green depths of forest shades, in the gleaming

expanse of snowy mountain peaks, in the waving of the

golden corn in the sunshine, in the silver of wavelets in

the moonlight, he sees His Beauty. In the sweet shy

smile of the maiden wooed in her dawning, in the eager

kiss of the lover who claims her as bride, in the tender


of the wife as they rest on the husband, in the answering

glance of the husband caressing the wife, in the laughing

lips of the child JOJ

TOUS in play, in the warm protecting

care of the father and mother, in the steadfast devotion

of friend to friend, in the leal fidelity of comrade to

comrade, he sees His Love. This is the " recollectedness

" of the Mystic, and is the true meaning of the

word mistranslated " fear " which "

is the beginning of

Wisdom". To realise this, and thus to know oneself

1 See " Introduction ".


to be one with God, is the aim of Theosophy, as of all

true Religion. All else is means to this end.


The common doctrines of religions, that which has been

believed everywhere, at all times, and by everyone,

form the body of doctrines promulgated by Theosophy.

These are : The One Existence the One God mani

fested hi the universe under three Aspects (" Persons,"

from persona, a mask) ; the hierarchies of superhuman

Beings Devas, Angels, and Archangels ; the Incarna

tion of Spirit in matter, of which Reincarnation is the

human phase ; the Law of Action and Reaction,

" as a

man sows, so shall he reap


; the existence of the Path

to Perfection, and of divine Men ; the three worlds

physical, intermediate, and heavenly and the higher

heavens ; the Brotherhood of humanity. These are

the leading doctrines of Universal Religion. They can

all be proved to be true by the wider Science which

investigates the manifested worlds, excluding none from

its study so far as its instruments can reach. Hence

Theosophy is everywhere the defender and helper of

religions, serving each in its own domain, pointing out

to each man the sufficiency of his own faith, and urging

him to deepen and spiritualise his beliefs rather than to

attack the forms preferred by others. It is thus a peace

maker among conflicting creeds, a carrier of goodwill,

amity, and tolerance wherever it goes. Knowing that

all religions come from one source, the White Brother

hood, it discourages bitterness of feeling among re

ligionists and all virulent attacks by one on another.

And hence we say of the Theosophical Society, its

vehicle :

" Peace is its watchword, as Truth is its aim."


This is a teaching which, though found in all religions,

has dropped much out of sight hi modern days, till


reproclaimed in Theosophy, and may therefore be fitly

sketched here. It is very fully described in Hinduism,

Buddhism, Roman Catholic Christianity, and Sufism

(mystic Muhammadanism), and its main features are

identical in all. The man who would enter the Path

must recognise Unity as his aim, and this is to be reached

by profound devotion to God and unwearying service

of Man. The first stage is named Purification in the

Christian books, the Probationary or Preparatory Path

in the others. The Christian name gives the negative

side, the getting rid of weaknesses ; the non-Christian the

positive side, the acquirement of four "

Qualifications" ;

these are : (1) Discrimination between the Real and the

Unreal ; (2) Dispassion, or Desirelessness as regards the

Unreal ; (3) the Six Jewels, or Good Conduct, comprising

Self-control in Thought, Self-control in Action, Toler

ance, Endurance, Confidence in the God within, and

Equanimity or Balance ; (4) Desire for Union, or Love.

The partial but definite acquirement of these by the

candidate brings him to the entrance of the Path of

Illumination, to use the Christian term, of the Path of

Holiness, or "the Path," to use the non-Christian.

Theosophy follows the older nomenclature, which divides

this Path into four stages, each entered by an " Initia

tion". Initiation is a definite ceremony, conducted by

the Perfected Members of the White Brotherhood,

under the sanction of its Head ; it gives to the new

Initiate an expansion of consciousness, and admits him

to a definite rank in the Brotherhood ; he is pledged to

Service, and is what is technically called " safe for ever "


that is, he cannot drop even temporarily out of evolution

during its period of activity.

Each successive Initiation carries with it certain

definite obligations, which must be fully discharged

before the next step can be taken. The fifth Initiation



" the Man, closing his human evolution. By

that He becomes a liberated Spirit ; He has " reached

the further shore ". Some of These remain on our earth,

to watch over and forward human evolution ; others


depart to fill the various offices needed for the helping

of our own and other planets, and for the general

guidance of the Solar System. Those we call " Masters "

are among Those who remain on our earth, and They

form the fifth grade of the White Brotherhood ; other

ranks rise above Them, until the head of the whole

Hierarchy is reached.


The world is divided into areas, each of which has a

Master at its head, and He guides its activities, selects

some men as His instruments, uses them, lays them

quietly aside when useless, seeking ever to inspire, to

guide, to attract, to check, but never to dominate the

human will. The Great Plan must be carried out, but

it is carried out by utilising free agents, who pursue

certain aims which attract them, power, fame, wealth,

and the rest. Where a man s aims, if carried out, will

forward the Plan, opportunities to rise are placed in his

way, and he obtains what he wants, ignorantly accom

plishing a little bit of the Plan. " All the world s a stage,

and all the men and women merely players


; but the

Drama is written by the divine Playwright ; men can

only choose their parts, limited in their choice by the

Karma they have created in their past, that includes

their capacities.

Further, there are great departments in the govern

ment of the world, that includes the whole planet.

The administrative department, that rules seismic

changes, the raising and submerging of continents, the

evolution of races, sub-races, and nations, and the like,

has among its leading officials the Manus ; a Manu is a

typical Man, and each root-race has its Manu, embody

ing its type in its highest perfection.

1 The teaching

department is headed by the Bodhisattva, or Christ,

the Supreme Teacher of Gods and Men ; He founds

1 See Section VI., " Some Details about Systems and Worlds,"

pp. 87, 88.



religions directly or through His messengers, and places

each under the protection of a Master, He Himself

superintending and blessing all. When He becomes a

Buddha, He leaves the earth, and is succeeded by

another as Bodhisattva.

These Mighty Beings are the vicegerents on our earth

of the Supreme Lord, the LOGOS, or manifested God.

They are "ministers of His, that do His pleasure".

Thus it comes to pass that His world is guided, pro

tected, assisted, as it slowly rolls upwards, by the long

road of evolution, to His Feet.



IT may help the reader to understand the value of

Theosophy in its bearing on Life, if we consider how it

may be applied to the resolution of some of the more

painful problems which confront us in the present state

of Society. Many suggestions may be drawn from

civilisations founded and ruled in the past by members

of the White Brotherhood, although, under the greatly

changed conditions now prevailing, new applications

.of the fundamental principles must be devised. The

foundation of a stable Society must be Brotherhood ;

the need of every human being is for happiness and for

conditions favourable to his evolution, and the duty of

Society is to supply an environment which yields these.

The birth of a human being into an organised Society

gives to him a claim, and to Society a duty the claim

of a child on its parents, the duty of the parents to the

child. It is this natural and proper claim of the younger

on the elder that has been perverted into the aggressive

doctrine of "



; animals, children, the sick, the

ignorant, the helpless, all these have rights the right

to be kindly used, protected, nursed, taught, shielded ;

the strong, the grown-up, have only duties.

Organised Society exists for the happiness and the

welfare of its members, and where it fails to secure these

it stands ipso facto condemned. " Government exists

only for the good of the governed." So said Pythagoras,

preaching on the hill at Tauromenion, and the phrase

has echoed down the centuries, and has become the

watchword of those who are seeking the betterment of



social conditions. Only when the good of the governed

is sought and secured does the State deserve the eloquent

description with which the great Greek Teacher closed

one of his lectures to the Greek colony of Naxos, whose

citizens were gathered round him on the hill : .


Listen, my children, to what the State should be to

the good citizen. It is more than father or mother, it

is more than husband or wife, it is more than child or

friend. The State is the father and mother of all, is

the wife of the husband, and the husband of the wife.

The family is good, and good is the joy of the man in

wife and in son. But greater is the State, which is the

Protector of all, without which the home would be

ravaged and destroyed. Dear to the good man is the

honour of the woman who bore him, dear the honour of

the wife whose children cling to his knees ; but dearer

should be the honour of the State that keeps safe the

wife and the child. It is the State from which comes

all that makes your life prosperous, and gives you

beauty and safety. Within the State are built up the

Arts, which make the difference between the barbarian

and the man. If the brave man dies gladly for the

hearthstone, far more gladly should he die for the


Pythagoras has become the Master K. H., well known

in connection with the Theosophical Society, and he

speaks out the Theosophical ideal of the State the

father-mother of its citizens, the Protector of all.

The duty of the State, of organised Society, is to secure

to every one of its members at least the minimum of welfare

of food, clothing, shelter, education, leisure which

will enable each to develop to the full the faculties which

he brought with him into the world. There is no necessity

for the existence of starvation and poverty, of overwork

and absence of leisure, of lack of comfort and the means

of enjoyment. Human brains are quite clever enough

to plan out a social system in which every citizen should

have enough for happy life ; the only obstacles are

selfishness and want of will. It was done long ago


under the King-Initiates who ruled in the City of the

Golden Gate and in Peru. It was done in the time of

King Ramachandra, as may be read in the Rdmdyana.

It was done when the Manu ruled in the City of the


1 But it must be planned out by wisdom, not

by ignorance, and brought about by the love and

sacrifice of the higher, and not by the uprising of the

lower. Mobs can make revolutions ; but they cannot

build a State.


Basing itself on the study of the past, Theosophy can

lay down certain principles, to be worked out into

details by the highly educated and experienced. The

principles are : that Government should be in the

hands of the Elders, i.e. the wisest, the most experienced,

and the morally best ; that the possession of ability and

of power imposes the duty of service ; that freedom

brings happiness only to the educated and self-con

trolled, and that no one, so long as he is ignorant and

unself-controlled, should have any share in the govern

ing of others, and should only have such freedom as is

consistent with the welfare of the community ; that the

life of such a one should be rendered as happy and useful

as possible, under discipline until he is fit to " run alone,"

so that his evolution may be quickened ; that co-opera

tion, mutual aid, should be substituted for competition,

mutual struggle ; that the fewer resources a man has **

within himself, the more means of outer enjoyment

should be placed within his reach by Society.


The suggestions which follow are the results of my

own study of what has been done in the past, and of my

own thought on present conditions. They are only

1 Much of interest and value may be found on the Manu s policy

in Bhagavan Das Science of Social Organisation,


suggestions, and many Theosophists might disagree

with them. My only wish is to indicate a line of change

consonant with Theosophical ideas. Brotherhood im

peratively demands fundamental social changes, and

the rapid growth of unrest, justified by the conditions

of the classes that live by manual labour, will force a

change ere long. The only question is whether the

change shall be brought about by open-eyed wisdom

or by blind suffering. At present, Society is engaged in

trying the latter plan.

The land of a country should be used to support :

(1) the Ruler, his Councillors, Officials of every grade,

the administration of Justice, the maintenance of in

ternal Order and of National Defence ; (2) Religion,

Education, Amusement, Pensions, and the care of the

Sick ; (3) all who are not included under (1) and (2),

and who gain their livelihood by manual labour in pro

duction and distribution.

Education, free and universal, should be the only work

of the period between seven and twenty-one years of

age, so that the youths of both sexes should, on reach

ing manhood and womanhood, be ready to become

dutiful and useful citizens, with their faculties well

developed, so that they would be capable of leading an

honourable, self-supporting and self-respecting life.

The working life and all should work in one of the

three above-named divisions should last from twentyone

to fifty years of age, unless a shorter term should be

found sufficient for the support of the nation. During

the remainder of the life, the citizen should be hi receipt

of a pension, the result of the accumulated surplus of

his working years, and therefore a repayment, not a gift ;

he should be free to devote himself to any pursuit he


Production and distribution should be organised by

such men as make the huge fortunes now becoming so

numerous, and after full provision for all concerned in

the producing and distributing, the surplus profits

should go to (1) and (2), chiefly to the latter. The


organisation of industry should be governed by the idea

that labour should be rendered as little burdensome as

possible by healthy conditions and by the substitution

of machinery for human beings in all unpleasant and

dangerous work mining, drainage, and the like ; where

unpleasant forms of human labour are necessary for the

welfare of the community, the hours of labour should be

shortened in proportion to the disagreeableness of the

task, without any diminution of pay. If the scavenger,

for instance, is to lead a human life, as much of his work

as can be done by machinery should be thus performed ;

for the rest, his hours should be very short, his pay good

since the health of the community depends on him

and recreation, some refining and educative, some

purely amusing, should be readily available within his

reach. He is an active hand of Nature, helping her ii\

her constant task of transforming the foul and the

dangerous into the nourishment of new life and new

beauty. He should be regarded, as said on p. 34. not

as a drudge but as a co-worker with God. Is it said that

he is coarse, repellent ? So much the more shame for

us, the refined and attractive, who profit by his work,

and have made him what he is by our selfishness, our

indifference, and our neglect.

The doctrine of Reincarnation, applied to education,

leads us to see in the child an ego who t as come into our

care during the time of the growth of his body, to be

helped in training it for the purpose for which he has

returned to the earth. Recognising that in the ego

himself are enshrined all the powe.s accumulated in

past lives, and that the germs of tliese are planted in

the new mental body, we feel the full force of Plato s

famous phrase, that " All knowledge is reminiscence,"

and seek to draw out of the ego that which he knows,

that he may stimulate the germinal mental faculties,

and so impress the plastic brain. We do not regard the

child-body as belonging to us, parents or teachers, but

as belonging to the ego, and we see it to be our duty to

help him in gaming full possession of it, to work from


outside while he works from within, and to follow out

any indication given by him as to the best line of study,

the easiest road of progress. We give to the child the

greatest liberty compatible with his physical, moral, and

mental safety, and in everything try to understand and

to help, not to coerce. The detailed application of these

principles may be read in an admirable little book on

Education and Service, by Alcyone.

Reincarnation, applied to the treatment of criminals

and of the undeveloped class which is ever on the verge

of crime, suggests a policy wholly different from that of

our present Society, which gives them complete liberty

to do as they like, punishes them when they commit a

legal offence, restores them to liberty after a varying

term of gaol, and so gives them a life of alternating

freedom and imprisonment, transforming them into

ha.bitual criminals, and handing them over finally to

" the divine mercy," man having failed to do any good

with them.1 In the light of Reincarnation I suggest

that the congenital criminal is a savage, come to us as to

a school, and that it is our business to treat him as the

intellectual and moral baby which he is, and to restrain

the wild beast in him from doing harm. These people,

and the almost criminal class above them, are recog

nisable from birth, and they should be segregated in

small special schools, given such elementary education

as they can assimilate, be treated kindly and firmly,

have many games, and be taught a rough form of manual

laboui. The teachers in these schools should be volun

teers from the higier social classes, willing to teach and

play with the boys, and capable of arousing in them a

feeling of admiration, attachment, and loyalty, which

would evoke ^bcdience. They must be with those who

are obviously their superiors if this is to be done. From

these schools they should be drafted into small colonies,

bright, pleasant villages, with shops, playground, musichall,

and restaurant, ruled by men of the same type as

1 That which follows is the immediate treatment of the criminal

as he is. We hope, later, to eliminate the type.


before ; they should have everything to make life

pleasant, except freedom to make it mischievous and

miserable ; these colonies would supply gangs of

labourers for all the rougher kinds of work, mining,

road-making, porterage, scavengering, etc., leaving the

decent people now employed in these free for higher

tasks. Some, the true congenital criminal, the raw

savage, would remain under this kindly restraint for

life, but they would go out of life far less of savages

than they were when they came into it. Some would

respond to the treatment, and would acquire sufficient

industry and self-control to be ultimately set free. The

chief difficulties would be innate rowdyism and idleness,

for the criminal is a loafer, incapable of steady industry.

The school would do something to improve him, and to

do right would be made pleasant, while to be rowdy

and idle would be made unpleasant ; "he that will not

work neither shall he eat "

is a sound maxim, for food

is made by work, and he who, being able, refuses to

make it has no claim to it. Checks might be given

for each hour s work, exchangeable at the shops and

restaurant for the necessaries of life, and the man could

do as much or as little as he liked ; the equivalent in

necessaries and luxuries would be at his own choice.

It is only possible here to indicate the broad lines of

the solution of this problem, and similar methods would

be employed, mutatis mutandis, with girls and women

of the corresponding type.

Karma, applied to the slums, would see in them

magnets for the lowest types of incarnating Spirits ; it

would be our wisdom, as it is our duty, to get rid of

these foul spots, attractive only to the most undesirable

of the incoming crowd. In the light of Theosophy, it

is the duty of the elders to plan out, and gradually to

construct, towns of decent dwellings with sufficient

interspaces, to which should be transplanted the dwellers

in the slums ; these poison-spots must be pulled down,

and the soil, sodden with the filth of generations, should

be turned into gardens ; the filth will then be changed


into trees and flowers, whereas to build new houses on

such soil is to invite disease. Moreover, Beauty must

be sought, for, as said in Section II., it is a necessity of

life for all, not a luxury for the few. Beauty refines and

cultivates, and reproduces itself in the forms and

manners of those who live under its influences. Beauty

in dress, in the home, in the town, is a crying need as an

evolutionary force. It is not without significance that

before the present age of machinery, when people were

more surrounded by natural beauty than they are now,

the clothes of the people of every class were beautiful,

as they still are in the East ; it is natural to man to

seek to express himself in Beauty ; it is only as he be

comes far removed from Nature, that he accepts with

indifference ugliness in clothes and surroundings. Con

trast the clothes seen in our slums with those seen in an

Indian village.

Volumes might be written on this theme of the

application of Theosophy to life, but within our present

limits the above must suffice.



IN Section III. the basic principle of the relation between

Spirit and Matter was given. It may be interesting to

consider some of its details.

It is possible to see that the universal ^Ether within

our Solar System and presumably elsewhere, since there

are many such Systems contains innumerable bubbles,

exactly similar in appearance to bubbles arising within

water, empty spaces, walled in only by the surrounding

water. A soap-bubble floating in the air is a tiny portion

of air within a surrounding film of soapy water ; but

the bubbles in water are tiny portions of air within a

mass of water, and have no limiting film ; they are kept

as bubbles by the pressure of the water containing them.

So these bubbles are kept as bubbles by the pressure

of the surrounding ^Ether, and as they cannot escape

from this, they can only remain bubbles. They are

" holes in ^Ether," or, as H. P. Blavatsky called them

long ago,

" holes in Space," and she said that they were

made by "

Fohat," the power of the Supreme LOGOS.

Ancient books similarly speak of " the great Breath "

as their cause ; the analogy is obvious, since bubbles

may be produced by breathing into water. A French

scientist, quoted by Mr. Leadbeater,1

says :

** There

is no matter ; there are nothing but holes in the ether."

But out of the aggregations of these holes, all that we

call matter is built up.

1 A Text-Boole of Theosophy, p. 27

81 w



The LOGOS of a Solar System encloses a huge frag

ment of the universal ^Ether, thus bubble-filled, within

His before-mentioned Ring-Pass-Not. The bubbles are

visible to the sight of the third or spiritual sphere, and

one can see that He sets up a great whirl of force, which

sweeps the bubbles together into a huge mass ; the

Third Aspect of the LOGOS is the Creative, and through

this He sends forth the first Life-Wave, as it is called,

which builds the bubbles into atoms, later aggregates

atoms into molecules, and finally builds these into the

six familiar sets of combinations, which in the physical

world are called sub-atomic, super-etheric, etheric,

gaseous, liquid, and solid.

These original separate bubbles form the matter of

the divine sphere, while that of the monadic sphere is

made of groupings of the bubbles into atoms, these

being formed by an impulse of the Life-Wave of Creative

Thought, causing minute vortices, each of which draws

in 49 bubbles ; thus two interpenetrating worlds are

formed, the divine and the monadic, the first of free

bubbles, the second of some of these combined into

atoms, each atom consisting of 49 bubbles. The second

impulse from the Life-Wave separates out a quantity

of these 49-atom-bubbles, dissociates them, and recombines

them in vortices, each of which contains 492

bubbles, the atoms of the spiritual world. A third

impulse separates a mass of these from the remainder,

dissociates them, and recombines them in vortices,

each of which contains 49s bubbles, the atoms of the

intuitional world. A fourth impulse in similar fashion

yields atoms of the mental world, containing 494

bubbles. A fifth yields atoms of the astral world,

containing 495 bubbles, and a sixth builds the atoms of

the physical world, each composed of 496 bubbles.

Thus are formed the interpenetrating spheres of seven

types of matter, each type being the atomic basis of a


world composed entirely of combinations of its own

particular atom. When this series of atoms was com

plete, the seventh impulse was sent forth, and this built

aggregations of atoms, a vast number of different

combinations ; these again entered into further com

binations with each other, in the process of many ages,

a period of inconceivable length ; during this time the

glowing nebula gradually cooled, ultimately being broken

up into a central Sun, with various planets revolving

round him as centre. This is the vast work of the

Creative Aspect of the Solar LOGOS, the "

Spirit of God "

who " moved upon the face of the waters " of ^Ether,

the axis of the whirling mountain which churned up the

ocean, so that out of it living things might arise.


There is one point of great interest in the formation of

atoms that ought not to be omitted. The Life of the

LOGOS is the whirling force within the atom, that holds

its component parts together. This Life gives to the

atom its distinctive quality, its essential nature, which

is a particular mode of the divine Consciousness ; the

Hindu calls this the "

tattva," literally the " Thatness "





That," is a reverent expression for the Divine

Being, and Thatness indicates "

Godness," or " Godnature&

quot;. Each atom has thus its "Godness". The

measure of the vibration of the atom, imposed upon it

by the Will of the LOGOS, is the "

tanmatra," the

" measure of That "

; this is the axes of the atom,1

lines of the thought-force of the LOGOS, the angular

divergence of which, within the fixed limits of vibration,

determines its surface form. Each type of atom has

its own peculiar work, for the states of consciousness

manifested by the LOGOS within His universe what

He is outside it none, save His peers, can tell are

1 Like the axes of crystals. They are " imaginary

" lines ; but

imagination is the creative power, and these lines govern the

form of the crystal, though they are * non-existent ".


identical in quality, though not in quantity, with the

states of consciousness in Man, the faint image of His

glory. It is thus His consciousness within the atom

which answers to our consciousness, stage by stage, the

material of the atom faithfully reflecting each stage in

the wave-lengths of its vibrations. Thus the atom of

the spiritual world vibrates in answer to the modes of

Spirit Spirit being its life ; that of the intuitional

world to the modes of Intuition for a like reason ;

that of the mental world to the modes of Intellect ; that

of the emotional world to the modes of Emotion and

Passion ; that of the physical world to the modes of

Vitality all for like reasons. Each change in conscious

ness in any of these states is at once answered by a change

of vibration in the corresponding matter ; any vibra

tion set up in matter is at once answered by a change

in the corresponding state of consciousness. For in

stance, all the matter of the emotional, or astral, sphere

is composed of atoms, the Life in which is Emotion, and

the measure of vibration of which is correlated to

emotion, to express and respond to it. The whole huge

gamut of emotions, passions, desires, is played by con

sciousness on this matter, and pure passion and desire

on this matter only ; as emotion is a mingling of passion

and thought, some mingling of thought-matter enters

into the expression of emotion. The matter of the

mental sphere is made of atoms similarly connected

with thought ; the Life is Mentality, the measure of

vibration is correlated to thought, to express and

respond to it. As definitely as in the physical world

the range of sounds lies within certain vibration-numbers,

and the range of colours within others, so can thoughts

and passions only be expressed by matter which vibrates

within certain limits.


When this part of the work has proceeded sufficiently

far for planets to be possible within the Solar System,


a series of six globes composed of the matter of the

spheres of varying densities is formed in connection with

each planet seven globes, including the planet. Such

a series is called a Chain, and during its period of evolu

tion it passes through seven stages, or lives ; there is

thus a succession of seven Chains, and this complete

series is termed a Scheme of Evolution, and is under the

charge of a mighty spiritual Intelligence, called by

Theosophists a " Ruler of seven Chains ".

1 There are

ten of these in our Solar System, but only seven are

in manifestation, ruled by the " seven Spirits before

the throne of God," mentioned in the " Revelation of

S. John". They are at different stages of evolution,

marked by the sphere of matter in which their lowest

globes exist. Thus the Neptunian and the Terrene

Chains have each three globes in the physical sphere,

for these are both at their deepest point of descent into

matter, in their middle, or fourth, life. The seven

globes of the Earth Chain include Mars, the Earth, and

Mercury ; those of the Neptunian, Neptune and his

two satellites.

Those who are interested in this part of Theosophical

study must pursue it in larger books, for it is naturally

very complicated.


Let us consider our own Chain. Evolution circles

round a Chain seven times, and each of these cycles is

appropriately called a Round. The evolutionary force

is called the Second Life-Wave, and it is the Life which

is sent out by the LOGOS through His second Aspect of

Wisdom, the dual Aspect, Knowledge-Love. Speaking

generally, this Life-Wave descends through the spheres

of matter, causing ever-increasing differentiation, and

then returns, causing reintegration into unity. Its

first work is to give to matter certain qualities, fitting it

to be materials for bodies ; it pours itself into the three

1 Called also a Planetary Logos, but the name causes confusion.


finer kinds of matter which form the higher mental

sphere ; matter thus infused with the second Life-Wave

is called, when atomic,

" Monadic Essence," because it

has become fit to be used to supply permanent atoms

to Monads ;

1 when non-atomic, i.e. molecular, matter

is used, it is called " Elemental Essence " a name

borrowed from the writings of mediaeval Occultists ;

it was bestowed by them on the matter of which the

bodies of nature-spirits were composed, for they spoke

of these as "

Elementals," dividing them into classes

belonging to the " Elements " of Air, Mre, Water, and

Earth. The three higher levels of the mental sphere

are, regarded as mental Elemental Essence, the " first

Elemental Kingdom". All abstract "thought-forms"

made of this, and a large and splendid host of Angels

Bodiless Devas have bodies composed of this matter.

The four lower levels of the mental sphere, suffused by

the second Life-Wave, form the " second Elemental

Kingdom "

; of this are made the bodies of the lower

Angels Form Devas. When the Life-Wave enters the

astral world, the atomic matter becomes astral Monadic

Essence, and the molecular matter astral Elemental

Essence, the " third Elemental Kingdom "

; the bodies

of the lowest Angels Passion Devas and of very many

nature-spirits are composed of this. The Life-Wave passes

on into the physical world, and performs its accustomed

task ; the bodies of the lower nature-spirits, fairies,

gnomes, and the like, are made of the etheric matter

thus suffused. The Mineral Kingdom is the turningpoint

of density ; there the second half of the work of

the Life-Wave proceeds, the building up of the bodies,

plants, animals, and men, now on the ascending arc;

the astral and mental bodies are also built of the

Elemental Essence on this ascending arc. Hence the

conflict that often arises between the life of the man

and the life in the matter of his bodies. The latter is

pressing downwards, seeking grosser and grosser em

bodiment and sharper differentiation ; the former is

1 See Section I., p. 24.


aspiring upwards, and is seeking unity. S. Paul natur

ally exclaims as to this conflict : "I find another law

in my members, warring against the law of my mind,

and bringing me into captivity to the law of sin which

is in my members." The Man must bring

" the flesh "

into subjection, for its life is evolutionarily downwards,

on the descending arc, and his is evolutionarily upwards,

on the ascending arc, taking its way to the realisation of



The point at which Man definitely



is when the Monad and his Ray Spirit, Intuition, and

Intellect who had been brooding over the evolving

forms carried in the bosom of the second Life-Wave,

flashes downwards to meet the evolving embodied life,

and the causal body is formed of the matter of the first

Elemental Kingdom, on the higher levels of the mental

sphere. The human Monads are also ^orne on a divine

current, the " third Life-Wave," coming forth from the

LOGOS through His first Aspect. We see, then, that the

LOGOS sends forth three mighty waves of His Life,

through His three Aspects in succession : the first

shapes and ensouls matter ; the second imparts quali

ties and builds forms ; the third carries down the human

Monad to unite with the forms prepared by the second.


We must now narrow our attention to our own world.

Three times has evolution swept round the series of

globes of which our earth is the densest three Rounds

Be behind us. The fourth sweep has come as far as our

earth, which is now evolving under its influence.

Minerals, plants, animals, men, all evolve together, but

we may confine ourselves to men. Seven root-types

of men evolve on our earth during this stage of its life.

Theosophists call these types Root-Races, and each has


its own special


continent," or configuration of land.

The first two Root-Races have disappeared. Of the

third, the Lemurian, which flourished on the continent

of Lemuria, now beneath the Pacific Ocean for the

most part, scarcely a pure specimen remains ; the

negroes are its descendants from mixed marriages.

The fourth, the Atlantean, spread over the earth from

the continent of Atlantis, which united western Europe

and Africa with eastern America ; it built some of the

mightiest civilisations the world has known, and the

greater part of the world s inhabitants still belong to it.

The fifth, the Aryan, leads humanity to-day. The sixth

is in the womb of the future, but its continent is beginning

its formation, and will occupy, roughly, the Lemurian

site ; the islands now being thrown up in the northern

Pacific are the indications of the commencement of a

work which will demand hundreds of thousands of years

for its accomplishment. The seventh lies far, far ahead.

Each Root-Race divides into seven sub-races ; we

have the fourth Root-Race divided into the Rmoahal,

Tlavatli, Toltec, Turanian, Semitic, Akkadian, and

Mongolian sub-races. The fifth Root-Race has, so far,

produced five sub-races : the Hindu, Arabian, Iranian,

Keltic, and Teutonic ; the sixth sub-race is beginning

to show itself in the United States.

Each Root-Race has, as the shaper of its type and the

guardian of its evolution, a Great Being called a " Manu "


the name is derived from man, to think, the root of






mann," etc. The Manu is The

Man, the type-Man of a Root-Race. The great racial

types may be realised by putting side by side a Negro,

a Mongol, an Aryan. The sub-race differences are

shown by a German and an Italian.

It will be seen that immense subjects of study are

here opened up, profoundly interesting, though not

bearing immediately on human happiness and human




THE Theosophical Society was founded in 1875 by a

Russian, Helena Petrovna Blavatsky, and an American,

Henry Steele Olcott. The first brought to it her vast

occult knowledge and entire self-sacrifice she belonged

to a wealthy family of the Russian nobility ; the second

brought extraordinary organising ability, already proved

in his service to his country in the purification of its

military department during the Civil War. At first,

on their reassertion of the Ancient Wisdom in the

modern world, they met a whirlwind of ridicule and

contempt. Now tke ideas have spread into every

civilised country, and it may be said, without fear of

contradiction, that it is to-day influencing the whole

world of thought.

The basis of the Society is a little peculiar ; only one

thing is binding on every member the acceptance of

Universal Brotherhood.

Its objects are :

First. To form a nucleus of the Universal Brother

hood of Humanity, without distinction of race, creed,

sex, caste, or colour.

Second. To encourage the study of comparative

religion, philosophy, and science.

Third. To investigate the unexplained laws of Nature

and the powers latent in man.

It will be seen that no member is asked either to

believe or to spread Theosophical teachings. Every

member is left absolutely free to study exactly as he

chooses ; he may accept or reject any Theosophical

teaching ; he remains in his own religion, Hindu, Parsi,

Buddhist, Hebrew, Christian, Muhammadan, and his

religion, if he holds to it strongly, will colour all his

ideas. If he accepts Theosophical teachings, a strong


believer in any special form of religion will present them

in his own form, and is absolutely free to do so. But

he must not insist on his own form of them being accepted

by others.

The experiment of forming a profoundly religious

body open to members of all religions equally is a unique

one, but it is gradually succeeding, with many difficulties,

occasional friction between members holding strongly

to opposing views, and plenty of discussion as to details.

The main policy of perfect tolerance, and the reason

for the policy, have been, formulated as follows by my

self, and have been objected to by no member. It may,

therefore, be presented as stating the general view.

No person s religious opinions are asked upon his joining,

nor is interference with them permitted, but everyone is re

quired to show to the religion of his fellow-members the same

respect as he claims for his own.

The Society has no dogmas, and therefore no heretics. It

does not shut any man out because he does not believe the

Theosophical teachings. A man may deny every one of them,

save that of human Brotherhood, and claim his place and his

right within its ranks.

Theosophists realise that just because the intellect can only

do its best work in its own atmosphere of freedom, truth can

best be seen when no conditions are laid down as to the right

of investigation, as to the methods of research. To them Truth

is so supreme a thing, that


do not desire to bind any man

with conditions as to how, or where, or why he shall seek it.

The future of the Society depends on the fact that it should

include a vast variety of opinions on all questions on which

differences of opinion exist ; it is not desirable that there should

be within it only one school of thought, and it is the duty of

every member to guard this liberty for himself and for others.

The Theosophical Society is the servant of the Divine Wisdom,

and its motto is :

" There is no Eeligion higher than Truth ".

It seeks in every error for the heart of truth whereby it lives,

and whereby it attaches to itself human minds.

Every religion, every philosophy, every science, every activity,

draws what it has of truth and beauty from the Divine Wisdom,

but cannot claim it as exclusively its own, or as against others.

Theosophy does not belong to the Theosophical Society ; the

Theosophical Society belongs to Theosophy.


The Theosophical Society is composed of students, belonging

to any religion in the world or to none, who are united by their

approval of the above objects, by their wish to remove religious

antagonisms and to draw together men of goodwill, whatsoever

their religious opinions, and by their desire to study religious

truths and to share the results of their studies with others.

Their bond of union is not the profession of a common belief,

but a common search and aspiration for Truth. They hold

that Truth should be sought by study, by reflection, by purity

of life, by devotion to high ideals, and they regard Truth as

a prize to be striven for, not as a dogma to be imposed by

authority. They consider that belief should be the result of

individual study or intuition, and not its antecedent, and

should rest on knowledge, not on assertion. They extend

tolerance to all, even to the intolerant, not as a privilege they

bestow but as a duty they perform, and they seek to remove

ignorance, not to punish it. They see every religion as a partial

expression of the Divine Wisdom, and prefer its study to its

condemnation, and its practice to proselytism. Peace is their

watchword, as Truth is their aim.

Theosophy is the body of truths which forms the basis of all

religions, and which cannot be claimed as the exclusive posses

sion of any. Members of the Theosophical Society study these

truths, and Theosophists endeavour to live them. Everyone

willing to study, to be tolerant, to aim high, and to work perseveringly,

is welcomed as a member, and it rests with the

member to become a true Theosophist.

I may add that most of us regard the Theosophical

Society as the result of a spiritual impulse, sent out by

the White Brotherhood, in order to save the world from

sinking into Materialism, and to prepare the minds of

men for the restoration of the esoteric teachings of

religion. It is to us the latest of many such impulses,

the earlier ones being embodied in separate religions,

while this seeks to draw the existing religions into

united friendly co-operation. We regard H. P.

Blavatsky as a Messenger of the White Brotherhood,

and many of us, I myself among the number, feel to

her the deepest gratitude, because she opened to us, in

this life, the gateway through which we ha-^e passed

into the presence of Those who sent her.


H. P. Blavatsky, The Secret Doctrine.

The Key to Theosophy.

The Voice of the Silence.

A. P. Sinnett, Esoteric Buddhism.

The Occult World.

The Growth of the Soul

Annie Besant, The Ancient Wisdom.

A Study in Consciousness.


An Introduction to Yoga.

Esoteric Christianity.

The Laws of the Higher Life.

In the Outer Court.

The Path of Discipleship.

Initiation, the Perfecting of Man.

The Three Paths and Dharma.

Universal Text-Book of Religion and Morals.

Annie Besant and C. W. Leadbeater, Thought-Forms.

Occult Chemistry.

Man : Whence, How, Whither.

C. "W. Leadbeater, Man Visible and Invisible.

The Other Side of Death.

Some Glimpses of Occultism.

The Inner Life, 2 vols.

Invisible Helpers.


A Text-Book of Theosophy.

J. Krishnamurti, At the Feet of the Master.

Education as Service.

Bhagavan Das, The Science of the Emotions.

The Science of Peace.

The Science of Social Organisation.

Mabel Collins, Light on the Path.

H. S. Olcott, Old Diary Leavest a History of the Theosophical



ACTION, 57, 62, 63, 67

reaction, 57, 62-66, 69

Activity (creativeness), 25, 33,

54, 55, 57

Agnosticism, 14

Angels, 39, 42, 51, 69, 86

Art, 19, 49-51,55

Astral sphere, 28-35

awakening, 30

Atoms and consciousness, 83, 84

Atoms, permanent, 24, 36, 37

Aura, 37

Auric colours, 28, 38

BEAUTY, 49, 50, 80

Blavatsky, H. P., 16, 81, 89, 91

Bodhisattva, 71, 72

Body, astral, 28-35, 36, 37, 38,

40, 47, 86

causal, 36, 37, 61, 87

mental, 36, 37, 61, 86

physical, 18, 25, 26, 27, 36,

37, 38, 56

Brotherhood of masters, 15. 17,

47, 48, 49, 69-72, 73, 91

Building of atoms, 82, 83

of forms, 85

CEREMONIES and rites, 41

Chains, 84, 85

Chakrams, 26

Comparative religion, 13, 14

mythology, 13, 14, 15, 16

Creation (creativeness), 25, 37,

56, 82, 83

DESIRE, 45, 58, 59, 62, 63, 66

Desire-world, 31-35

Devas, 38, 42, 69, 86

Duty of State, 74

EDUCATION, 76, 77, 78

Emotion, 84

Emotions and virtues, 4547

Essence, monadic, 86

elemental, 86

Ethical code, 48

Etheric double, 25, 26, 29, 37

vision, 27

GENIUS, 37, 55

Government of world, 71, 72

HATE and vice, 45, 46

Heaven-world, 35, 39, 40, 59

Hell, 32

IDEALS, 48, 49, 51, 61

Individuality, 24, 25, 35

Initiation, 59, 70

Intellect, 25, 36, 37, 55, 61, 67,

84, 87

Intuition, 25, 40, 67, 84, 87

Intuitional sphere, 40

KARMA, 57, 62-66, 69; 71, 79

Knowledge of God, 1

esoteric, 13

LAWS, 43, 44, 48, 56, 57, 60, 63-


Love and virtue, 45, 46, 47

Life-wave, first, 82

second, 85, 87

.third, 87


Meaning of Theosophy, 9, 12


Memory of past, 60, 61

Mental sphere, 35-40, 86

Method of study, 18

Mind, 25, 37, 38, 52, 55, 56, 61,


Monad, 23, 24, 25, 35, 41, 54,

62, 67, 86, 87

Morality, 19, 43-49

Motion-time, 21, 54

Mysteries, the, 9, 10

Mythology, comparative, 13, 14,

15, 16

NATURE-SPIRITS, 27, 29, 51, 86

OLCOTT, H. S., 89

One existence, 53, 69

One life,


17, 19, 42, 54, 68

Organisation of industry, 76,


PATH, 59, 69-71

Personality, 24, 25, 36, 37, 62

Philosophy, 19, 52, 55, 90

three bases for, 53, 54

Plan, the great, 44, 71

Principles of New Order, 75

Purgatory, 31-34, 59

Pythagoras, 73, 74

RATIONALE of moral precepts,

47, 48

Reincarnation, 58-62, 69, 77-


Religion, 19, 55, 67, 90

Right and wrong, 44, 45

Root-races, 87, 88


Science, 18, 21, 90

Slums, 79, 80|

Spirit as intellect, 25, 36, 37

as intuition, 25, 40

as will, 25, 40

Spiritual sphere, 40

Stillness-space, 21, 54

Suggestions on New Order, 75-


Superstitions, 42

TABLE of correspondences, 23,


Theosophical teachings, 69

Society, 16, 69

Thought-forms, 38, 51

Thought-power, 56, 57, 64, 86

Triplicity, 54, 55, 57, ;

Truth and morality, 46, 47

UNITY of religions, 12, 17

VIKTUES and love, 45, 46

and truth, 26

Vitality, 26, 27, 84

WILL, 25, 40, 45, 48, 54, 55, 66,


Wisdom, 25, 40, 54, 55, 85

Working life, 76

YOGA, 56, 61









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