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Re: "Spirituaal culture" answering some inquiries

Oct 02, 1998 03:11 AM
by Dallas TenBroeck

October 2nd 1998

Dear Jerry:

May I insert comments in the body of your notes/answers/queries
below ?


> From: Jerry Schueler
> Sent:	Thursday, October 01, 1998 10:39 AM
> Subject: Re: "Spiritual culture" answering some inquiries

>All selfishness must be eliminated from the lower nature
>[personal mind] before its divine state of contemplation and
>impartiality can be reached.  So long as the smallest selfish or
>personal desire - even for spiritual attainment for one's own
>sake --  remains, so long will the desired result elude and be
>put off.
This sounds like the requirements for Crossing the Abyss.

AGREED  -- But what I am trying to say is that the SPIRITUAL RAY
(or MONAD) which is at the core of our being is indestructible,
and persists, since SPIRIT (as its sources) is equally


>The process of evolution up to a conscious and voluntary reunion
>with the Divine [ in understanding and thought - which does not
>erase the individual in any way ] includes a successive
>from rank to rank of power and usefulness.
Why do you think that the individual is not erased in any way?
What about the dew drop sinking into the sea? What about
Buddhist anatma?  I think our individuality is purely mayavic.


As said above:  if SPIRIT is ONE WITH the  ABSOLUTE as its
highest emanation, why should anything pertaining to the SPIRIT
(whether individual or as a "whole" be obliterated ?

If that were possible KARMA would not operate and the cause for
the reincarnation of Universes could not be.

I feel that we are missing something here.

To me the MONAD  (Atma-Buddhi) is a permanency - and "immortal
being" which persists before, during and after current

When the "dew drop" sinks into the shining Sea it becomes ONE
WITH  all the rest.  But because of the accretions left by MANAS
upon and within it, it retains its individuality.  I DON'T KNOW

Perhaps it is because we are limited in thought to the qualities
of this Universe only - but, logically for there to be any
"qualities" or Individuality centered in the MONAD there has to
be cause and precedent.  HPB writing "as an Occultist" states in
[THEOSOPHIST, January 1886 ] states:

 "...that though merged entirely into Parabrahm, man's spirit
while not individual per se, yet preserves its distinct
individuality in Paravirvana owing to the accumulation in it of
the aggregates, or skandhas that have survived after each death,
from the highest faculties of the Manas.  The most
spiritual -i.e., the highest and divinest aspirations of every
personality follow Buddhi and the Seventh Principle Into Devachan
(swarga) after the death of each personality along the line of
rebirths, and become part and parcel of the Monad."   [ HPB Art.
III, 265 ULT ]

>The most exalted beings still in the flesh are known as Sages,
>Magi, Rishis, Brothers, Master of Wisdom, Mahatmas, etc...  They
>are greatly concerned with the preservation at all times of the
>wisdom of the world, its evolution, its potential as regards the
>Whole, and, as regards every individual man or woman.  When
>cycles permit, this knowledge is extended and diffused so that
>its influence attracts the inquiring mind of those who aspire to
>know more of themselves - as a Divine Being -- their environment
>and their potentials.

I know that you got this HPB, but I think its more poetical than
There simply is no such grandiose organization.


HPB describes this in greater detail in one of her letters to Mr.
A.P.Sinnett  p. 242-3 of that book - Do you have it ?


In addition the whole of the SECRET DOCTRINE gives hints and
clues as to these great beings and the duties and
responsibilities that they assume in the formation and guidance
of our world and of humanity in so far as knowledge and wisdom
are concerned.

Would you object to the existence of the many hierarchies of
University and Academic kinds extant in our world ?


>When such a Union with one's own inner Divine is achieved all
>events and experiences of each incarnation will become known.

I don't believe this for a second. Such a "union" is called a
mystical experience, and it happens to millions of people
every year who don't have a clue what happened. The union
has to be fully assimilated first, and this can take many years.


I would refer you to Patanjali's Yoga Sutras which describes this
and other powers.  Most of Book III covers these.  Would you like
to have a copy in case you are not aware of this ?


>Regarding the process of spiritual development Theosophy
>1. that the essence of the process is securing supremacy in
>life to the Highest Nature that is already in our conscious
>awareness, and which some call vaguely "the spiritual element of
>man's nature."


>2. This is attainable along four lines:
> A Selfishness is to be eradicated in all forms and ideas, and a
>broad, generous, brotherly sympathy, is to be firmly rooted as
>the practice of doing active good for others.

How many of us have been able to do this, I wonder? I agree,
however, that this is the very first step on the Path as outlined
by HPB.


Quantitatively I have no idea, but in the eternity of the Past,
there must be quite a vast number, when we consider the multitude
of stars and worlds it would seem that each develops its own
hierarchies of Wise and Devoted Men-Minds which assist as the
Adepts and Masters of Wisdom do in this vast and ancient work.

I find it inspiring to know that we have such examples available
to us, in thought, if not in actual physical presence.  I would
also say that the body of the writings of HPB go far to
demonstrate this as a fact - if the coherency and reasonableness
go for anything among us.


> B The cultivation of the inner man by the use of meditation and
>seeking to commune with the Inner Divine, and the practice in
>personal life of the disciplines outlined in "Patanjali's Yoga
>Sutras" - "the incessant striving to live an ideal life."
This is the same as A.

> C Actively controlling the "fleshly appetites" and selfish,
>personal desires - all lower, material interests being
>deliberately subordinated to the needs of the "Higher, Spiritual
This is the same as A.

> D The careful and attentive performance of every duty of one's
>personal life, without any desire for a "reward."  Leaving any
>results out of the question as a motive for their doing - as
>suggested and urged by Krishna on his pupil Arjuna in the
>"Bhagavad Gita."
This is the same as A. You are saying the same thing in different

>3. While all the above is performable by any seriously disposed
>individual guided by a sense of duty and his Conscience, there
>yet a still higher plane of spiritual attainment.  History
>records in fragments, traces of specific courses in training,
>physical, intellectual and spiritual, by which the internal
>faculties of every man and woman can be aroused and then
>developed.  These are known in full to Theosophy which records
>them as part of the history of the development of humanity.

The only know "fragments" that I am aware of have all to do with
psychism and/or magic. If these are known "fully" to Theosophy,
where may I find them?  I thought that Theosophy was not supposed
to be a Hall of Magic (which is a valid discipline for spiritual
internal development).


The Masters in writing Sinnett stated that the THEOSOPHICAL
SOCIETY  was not established to be a "School of Magic."

>From the outset, HPB's first pubic article:  "A FEW QUESTIONS TO
HIRAF." And then continued through all she wrote to her final
article MY BOOKS  is a record of the knowledge that Theosophy
gives on the subject of the hidden laws and rules of Nature - and
that is "magic" or WISDOM.  So each one of us can draw on that to
the extent that he is able/


>The rationale of spiritual development then includes:
>1. The process takes place entirely within the individual.
>Within each individual are the motive, effort, and the results
>from making one's self increasingly close to one's interior
>Higher Self.  Results are all derived from this increasing
>closeness to the Higher Self along the lines of self-induced
>evolution guided by a self-enlightened mind.


>2 Howsoever personal and interior this process may be, it is not
>unaided, and in fact, is only possible because of the Higher
>[ the SPIRITUAL RAY ] resident in each person as the source of
>its Being.  Increasing communion during waking life is the
>supreme source of all strength of purpose.


>Concerning the degree of progress through successive
>it holds that:
>1. Even a mere intellectual acquaintance with Theosophic
>doctrines has great value in fitting an individual for a step
>upwards in the rest of this life, and, succeeding ones, as it
>gives impulse in that direction.

What about the so-called hundredth money effect? Doesn't
one person's study help others unconsciously?


I never heard of the "hundredth money effect"

But, I would agree with you that anything that we do
constructively and positively helps all the rest to some extent.


>2 Still more is to be gained by a career of duty, self-sacrifice
>and assistance to others - treating all as brothers in fact, and
>extending benevolence in one's daily life to all.

This is a tough one. You talk about the absolute importance
of selfishness and the lack of any reward, and then you bring in
"to be gained."  I have a real problem with this kind of


I think you mean "UNSELFISHNESS" ?

The "gaining" is as described by HPB in the first quote from her
article given above - the ADDITIONS and accretions to the MONAD.

It is not intended as "buying and selling" in the ordinary
way.-or working for some end-result and then, perhaps, relaxing.

As I understand it all we need to do is to learn and understand
what Nature intends for us to do and work at.

Consider with me that we are here (perhaps involuntarily) - and
many behave as though they had a right to be rebellious -
considering that they ought not to be bound by any of the laws of
brotherhood, cooperation, or inter-action.

Now if this were true, then none of us would be living or in this
kind of physical, psychic, and mental existence at all.  We would
all be flying off to our own little corner of isolation - and,
pushing this to a logical conclusion, if everything in Nature did
this, then Chaos would reign and nothing could live.  We depend
on air and water, and food, and the assistance of innumerable
known and unknown beings, men, animals, etc - the organization of
our body is stupendous - and we really have not lifted so much as
an occasional finger to assist - or do you think that Nature owes
us ingrates a special situation and condition ?  (and of course I
include myself among those in this designation - as you rightly
say, we are so customarily selfish, that we do not realize how
deep this is part of us.

Since we witness the contrary, and Nature allows us to live,
there is something to be said for cooperation and human
solidarity, as well as sharing.  We get a lot of things for
nothing, and we are debtors to the givers all the time.  If we
have a shred of gratitude, we would then be seeking the ways in
which we could carry our share and give in turn, assistance to

We are (most of us) so imbued with clannishness, with family,
with nation and race and religion, and with our own personal
make-up, that we find it difficult to extend our horizon of
companionship to all who approach us.  L think several of us in
the past have echoed these ideas.  Every great sage or prophet
has said the same.  Theosophy does the same, and adds the
important aspect of clear logic and reason, as well as history to
assist us in convincing ourselves of the reasonableness of the
First Object of the T S .

As I say, this is how I see it.


>3 Greater advance is achieved by practicing the several means
>suggested or outlined above in regard to spiritual culture and
>the process of regular consultation with one's HIGHER SELF - the
>SPIRITUAL BEING resident within.

Please be careful with such phrases as "greater advance." Who is


As far as I can understand, the MONAD (Atma-Buddhi_ working with
the Higher Mind ( Higher Manas) sends a "ray" into "matter" to
live and work there with the many undeveloped MONADS and drawing
them together frames in due time the "personalities" that we
use - our bodies (the lower quaternary) consisting of physical
and astral body, Life principle, and Kama (desire and passion -
which in the animals we call instinct).

The Lower Mind ( Lower Manas) using the physical brain then
serves as the operator in the personality.  The MONAD
(Atma-Buddhi) is our HIGHER SELF - and this is the eternal
Witness or Perceiver in us.  From it emanates the "Voice of
Conscience" and the "Intuition."

The Sutratma is the name given to the imperishable, eternal
MONAD, and the link between Higher and Lower Manas during each
incarnation has been named the Anaskarana - the bridge over which
flow IDEAS.

But I am sure you know this very well and the definitions are to
be found in the KEY TO THEOSOPHY and in the THEOSOPHICAL
GLOSSARY, both by HPB.


>4 In the process of general evolution, each individual and each
>"race" reaches a point called "the Moment of Choice" - it is a
>period when they decide for themselves by a deliberate and
>conscious choice between eternal life or death.  And that
>peculiar choice is the right of every free soul.  It cannot be
>exercised until the individual has realized the reality of the
>SOUL (Mind-being) within himself, and until that Soul has
>attained some measure of self-consciousness in the body.

I don't know what you are talking about here. You lost me.
I don't know what you mean by "a deliberate and
>conscious choice between eternal life or death?"  Who,
pray tell, would consciously chose death over life, if given
a choice?


I am summarizing the information that HPB gives to us in the

MOMENT OF CHOICE  (this relates to the "free-will" of each human
soul)  see  SD I 265, 247, 413, 639;  II 79, 300-4fn, 412, 420-1,
End of part I  (THEOSOPHIST, Oct. 1881) ,


> The "Moment of Choice" is not a fixed period in time, but it is
>made up of all choices made from moment to moment in one's daily
>living.  It cannot come unless all previous lives have led up to
I think this is a terrible idea, and one apparently intended to
young children. Where is the God of Love through all of this?


> Any individual can hasten this "moment of choice" under the law
>of the ripening of Karma.  Should one fail to choose right, one
>is not wholly condemned.  For the economy of Nature provides
>he shall again and again have the opportunity of choice, when
>moment arises for the mass of Egos, that make up a "race" as a
>whole, reaches the "moment of choice" for the whole.

I think you are taking HPB way way too literally in all this.

> After that the wave of reincarnation sweeps those Egos into
>fresh circumstances relative to their chosen progress.  The race
>having "blossomed" it now tends, as a physical "race," towards
>its dissolution.

I have asked this question before, and would like to hear your
answer. The question is:
Do we incarnate within a single race, or do we incarnate
between the races?
Which brings up: Is G de Purucker's "life-wave" identical to
HPB's "Root Race.?" I personally think not.
If Theosophy teaches that we are all stuck incarnating within
a single race or that we incarnate in only one race at a time,
then I will turn in my club card.


As far as I know we incarnate again and again in all the races,
sub-races, family-races in each Round and on each Globe - they
are periods of time, and areas of experience during which the
various faculties and qualities of perception sensation,
instinct, thought, ratiocination and intuition are developed,
studied, amalgamated, and refined for use by the indwelling MONAD
in each of us.

As I understand it, HPB employed the concept of the 7 Globes,
which all egos visit in turn (a 7-fold visit making a "Round")
and the 7 Root Races, within which there are the Sub-races,
Family-races etc... are more periods of time than any
physiological or ethnic link to any of our existing divisions
that are named today "races."  If you read the S D  I from p. 152
on  to p. 205, and consider also the diagram on p. 200 you will
be able to get what she desired to convey.

In the process the "lower Mind" and our "personality" become
refined, purer, and gradually become "spiritualized" each in
their turn.  I think we have to look on our proceeding through
the evolutionary process as one where we meld all these things
intelligently together.

HPB seems to speak and imply that the "life-wave" is a group of
similar egoic types which move and live together bound by certain
temporary qualities of similitude.  But as individual Karma is
made an operates, those bonds may be made stronger or relaxed and
in time other connections and bonds are made.  When you consider
the enormous amount of time consumed in this process (see SD II
68-70) there is ample time for all sorts and kinds of
relationships to form and change.

> A few individuals of it will have outstripped its average
>progress and attained Adeptship or Mahatmaship.  The main body
>having chosen aright pass into a subjective condition, there to
>await the return and influx of the life-wave into the next
>"globe" when they become the forerunners of the races to
>incarnate there.

This is a nice paraphrase of HPB, but I ask, is life-wave
the same as race? (I would have asked HPB herself if I
had been there)


> The deliberate choosers of evil, whose lives are passed in
>spiritual wickedness (for evil done for the sheer love of

Gack. I am sorry Dallas, but my stomach won't let me take any
of this kind of nonsense. No one, and I repeat not a single
person in this world, does "evil" for the pure love of it. What
do (their behaviors) is rationalized in their minds as "good"
just like
HItler thought that killing Jews was good for the planet. There
is no such thing as an evil person, but there are people who do
bad things. But they always have reasons (irrational, perhaps)
for what they do, and these do not include 'because I enjoy being
evil.'  Of course, I could be wrong. Maybe you can give me some
examples of people who are "deliberate choosers of evil?"  I
don't know any.


Jerry I am quoting - while I cannot say that I have met any such
dreadfully "evil" persons in this incarnation, I have met some
whom I would not care to meet again.

Theosophy does speak of black magicians and of those who conceive
of and plan evil - it seem reasonable to me - if only as a
contrast or polar opposite of those who live for and do "good."

I have no ready-made examples to offer.

Best wishes and thanks



Jerry S.

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