Re: Theos-World Responses to Leon
May 11, 1999 02:25 AM
In a message dated 4/6/99 2:33:25 PM, firstname.lastname@example.org
>>>...your original arguments to defend the concept of enlightenment in
>one lifetime, regardless of the practices of previous lifetimes, as
>being the "only" possibility, and that all other views are wrong-...>>
>Dear Leon, if you want to denigrate what I say, that is your
>right, but please repeat what I said properly. I never said
>anything like "regardless of the practices of previous lifetimes" which
>would be impossible.
Why do you assume that disagreeing with what I thought you said, as a
denigration? I thought one could only denigrate character. Or, do you
always put a personal psychological twist on everything, in order to defend
your "wild" (your claim) statements? Besides, I was referring to your
statement of enlightenment in one lifetime being the "only possibility." To
me "enlightenment in one lifetime" means just that. From total ignorance to
total understanding--zero to all--between birth and death, as Milarepa was
supposed to have accomplished such a feat. So, how can there be any
"previous lifetimes of practice" in that scenario? Of course, I now
understand why you usually answer disagreements by taking them out of
context, or denying what you originally implied.
>>>you have not given any credible evidence >>
>There is no such thing for closed minds, and open minds
>don't need it.
Of course, by this, I assume that you are implying that your statements are
therefore, infallible, and that anyone with an open mind would have to
believe everything you say. To contradict this "wild" assertion, I would
assume that you presume that such "open minds" are really "empty" minds which
you would like to fill with your ideas, and, thus, avoid all further
argument. Additionally, I could assume that you actually believe that
"closed minds" can't be opened when faced with irrefutable evidence.
However, actually, I would rather believe that that remark was a personal
dig, and another attempt at psychologizing rather than arguing for your (in
my opinion) indefensible wrong "opinions".:-)
>>>One way to stop incarnating "forever" (and that includes through the
>eternality of Brahma) is to put out your spark of consciousness by
>separating yourself completely, in mind and spirit, from the flow of
>karma through continued, non redeemable acts of ultimate evil, or other
>means of spiritual "suicide". Such "isolation" is not the same as the
>"enlightenment" or "Nirvana" spoken of by Patanjali and other ancient
>and modern Masters. ">>
>Agreed. Except that nirvana implies no need for a return,
>while the avichi business implies a postponed need.
Just the reverse. Nirvana implies nothing of the kind, according to HPB and
the adept teachers--who consistently maintained that all nirvanic bliss must
eventually end since it only applies to that level of evolutionary
advancement that one can gain in the particular Kalpa in which said nirvanic
state was obtained. At the beginning of the next Kalpa, the nirvanee would
be forced to recommence evolution at the point left off... Usually, at a
stage far behind those who waited until the end of the previous Kalpa or had
no desire for Nirvana--bodhisattva or not. On the other hand, Avitchi, for
the "lost soul" whose "light" has gone out (as I described above),
constitutes a total dropping out of the mainstream of evolution--with no
further chance to get back in the flow.
>>>On the other hand, in the case of the enlightenment of a Bodhisattva,
>"reincarnating forever" is a natural and accepted concomitant.>>
>>>As for "Enlightenment in one lifetime," that may be quite possible for
>one who is a new soul .."
>I am not ready to believe in "new souls." I think that we have
>all reincarnated countless times.
Not necessarily. The universe is in continuous growth and life didn't all
appear on Earth in one fell swoop (or, are you really a creatonist at
heart?:-). How can you be so sure that all the "sparks" destined to be human
beings in this Kalpa have already incarnated? Also, since you believe ALL of
us have reincarnated "countless times"... How can anyone ever achieve
enlightenment in ANY lifetime? (So as not to be be misunderstood out of
context again, I hope you understand that I am speaking of HUMAN
Besides, countless is a meaningless term... (If Buddha said he could remember
all his incarnations, how could they have been countless? Why, I even have
no trouble counting all 7 [or maybe 10] of mine in this Kalpa.;-) And, there
certainly can be no reason to believe that "new souls" are not continuously
arriving on the Earth--since theosophy teaches us that all "lives" are
continually evolving... And, eventually, all sparks of animal "kingdom
consciousness" must eventually arrive at the stage of human "kingdom
consciousness." Didn't the Hebrew Cabbala teach that "first a stone, then a
plant, then an animal, then a man, then an angel, and finally, a god"?
So, what's to stop my wonderful friend and companion who was once my beloved
dog, "Beauty"--and who had more humanity, sensitivity, understanding and
compassion than many human's I know--from incarnating as the blank slate of
consciousness in a human baby one day? In fact, when Beauty died she was
already well on the way to learning how to speak--with an understood
vocabulary of at least 500 words, an understanding of sentence structure and
inflection, and about 6 to 8 words she could talk (even lacking a proper
human vocal box and mobile tongue). Surely, then, there can be no such thing
as ANY "permanent" level of consciousness, and (barring "Avitchi") all stages
of being eventually evolve (according to karmic laws) to a higher state of
So, its no longer a matter of "belief" or not. "New souls" (from the human
standpoint) must ALWAYS be appearing--just as other souls, gone irretrievably
wrong, are ALL WAYS disappearing. Also, how do we account for those born
with absolutely NO human instincts or qualities--such as the many human
"beasts" we occasionally come across (whom you, as an alleged PhD in
psychology, must have even more knowledge of)? How could such "animal" souls
have had "countless" human incarnations, let alone more than even a few? How
long could it take to get to Avitchi? If Milarepa could be enlightened in
one lifetime and could have gone to Nirvana if he had a mind to, why couldn't
one of these unredeemable human "animals" get to Avitchi just as fast? Hey,
what if Milarepa kept up his bad ways until he died? Mightn't he just as
well have gone to Avitchi as fast as he could have gotten to Nirvana?
>Is "Enlightenment in one lifetime" the same as "Liberation
>in one lifetime?" Depends on definitions. If we assume that
>they are, then Milarepa is one of many many such people.
>Glenn Mullin's Six Yogas of Naropa gives the name of
>some other yogis, etc. I prefer to think of them as being
>different, though. First comes enlightenment, and then
Liberation goes along with enlightenment, according to Patanjali. It stands
to reason that once one is enlightened, he is liberated from the bondage of
ignorance, and thus the world. At that moment, according to the teachings of
the Buddha and of HPB, one can choose either the Nirmanakaya, Sambogakaya or
Dharmakaya Robe. the choice of Nirvana, or continued incarnations, the number
of which would depend on one's Dharma, would then be no more than an instant
away. As Bodhisattvas, I'm sure that the "great ones" of us who are really
working at the forefronts of the theosophical movement, incarnate very few
times--only when they are needed. So except for a few more 'lifetimes"
during this transition period to check up on their work, I don't expect we'll
bump into HPB, Jesus, Buddha, or Krishna until the next great crisis in human
evolution. As for those of us (and I speak only of true theosophists who are
already bodhisattvas) who take the roles of planets and moons instead of
suns... Well, they might have to come back a little more often. (But,
definitely, not as many as can't be counted.;-)
>>>So, when we speak of enlightenment, we must remember that it covers
>all seven natures, and ranges between many degrees of acquired wisdom
>and knowledge from a mere Chela, through a full fledged Master, to an
>Avatar (who may have attained his
>Mastery in a previous Manvantara).>>
>I think everyone agrees with this. There are degrees of
Not anyone with any degree of true theosophical understanding. No, there are
not. There is only enlightenment itself--although there may be degrees of
understanding of fundamental truths. I didn't say that a Chela was
enlightened... Nor, did I say that an Adept was not as enlightened as a
Master. Enlightenment, means just that. A TRUE realization of the SELF and
a complete understanding of the ultimate moment of time, as well as a
comprehension of the fundamental LAWS of karma. That doesn't mean that one
doesn't still have to acquire the knowledge, adeptness, and Mastery so as to
be not "better," but fully "able to help and teach others." This gaining of
knowledge and skills, backed up by wisdom, does not constitute any further
"degree of enlightenment," but is simply a "training of the intellect" to be
able to act for and as the SELF of all--AFTER one has become fully
>>>What must rule in all these discussions, however, is, not reference to
>authorities, scriptures, or personal opinions, but the scientific, and
>impersonal laws of karma operating in accord with the fundamental laws
>of cycles and periodicity that are clearly stated as the basis of the
>2nd Fundamental Principle--(described in the Proem of the secret
>I just love the way you can say in one breath not to go to
>authorities, and then immediately say we have to depend
>on the authority of HPB and her Masters. And you don't
>even realize the inconsistency of your argument...
Now you are going too far... I love the way you can twist and reverse what
anyone says to suit your own purposes. That statement of mine was also taken
out of context. And. I'm sure you didn't like the inference that it was to
YOUR constant claims of being an "authority," referrals to Buddhists
scriptures, and "personal opinions" that was refuted--by pointing to
scientific truths that contradict most of your "wild" statements. I never
said that it was HPB's authority that gives credence to the LAWS of KARMA. I
said that they were based solely on the laws of CYCLES which are a Universal
TRUTH. And, that his truth was thoroughly described and explained by HPB in
her Proem for anyone to understand who has the ears to hear and the eyes to
see. (It was certainly clear enough for Einstein to base his entire theory
of relativity on--including the equation E=mc^2.) Apparently, you either
have not those eyes and ears, and must think that she dreamed up these ideas
and presented them as something out of the blue. Or, we might assume, then,
if you do have such eyes and ears, that you didn't read that Proem to the
Secret Doctrine--or if you did, had no understanding whatsoever of the
fundamental principles put forth as the BASIS of all that followed... Or,
perhaps you do not know that HPB renounced any authority for any part of the
Secret Doctrine she presented--"solely as a Messenger"--along with the
admonition that the Doctrine, itself, must rest solely on it own consistency
and reasonableness. Now, judging from that sneery and polemical statement
of yours, I'm sure, you don't realize the inconsistency of everything YOU
say. How can you in one breath claim to be a fellow theosophist and a
student of HPB, and in the other, completely contradict YOURSELF by showing
you have no understanding of the ancient teachings whatsoever? Is that all
you can do in these discussions, but counter disagreements of your "wild"
statements with polemics and clever rhetorical gimmicks?
>As far as I am concerned, what must rule is one's own
That's by far your wildest statement yet. What if your experiences are all a
figment of your own imagination? That's not thinking, but just reacting.
Being a mindless and reactionary skeptic, as your statement implies, may be
okay for you to base your "countless" lives on, but it will get you nowhere
in convincing us that you are any sort of authority in theosophical matters.
>Maybe you missed all the wild discussions we have been
>having here on karma? It is pretty clear to me that Karma
>is NOT "clear." Nor is there an "authoritative" rule anywhere.
>You are giving us your own personal opinion immediately after
>saying that we should avoid personal opinions, and you can't
>even see the discrepancy, prefering to project your anger onto
> >>.. and the many references made to the nature of karma by the
>Masters and their direct messengers (See W.Q.J's "Aphorisms on Karma"
>and HPB's teachings and comments on Karma) is enough "authority" for
>most theosophists. >>
>Except that it is obvious from our discussion on this list
>that we all have different interpretations of just what karma
>is. Or at least this is how I see it. You, on the other hand,
>apparently see yourself as "right" and everyone else as
>"wrong." Well, you are welcome to your opinions.
>>>Except for the special case of Milarepa and its mythic and "magical"
>Milarepa is no special case. He was a normal human being,
>and that is exactly why his life holds such fascination and hope.
Again I ask... Which mythic story about Milarepa have you read? Even if he
were a real person, he could not have achieved enlightenment in ONE lifetime,
unless he was already enlightened before he went totally bad. The whole
purposes of the legend was to teach that no matter how evil one is in one
life, he can always mitigate it and become enlightened in that SAME life,
before, going on as an eternal bodhisattva and as, possibly, a Tulku. That,
from my point of view holds far more fascination and hope. At least, the
"fallen angels" or those who are almost at the gates of Avitchi still have a
chance if they can follow in Milarepa's footsteps.
>>>--based on a clear understanding of fundamental laws of karma
>There is no such thing as a "clear understanding" of karma, at
>least by anyone on this list and I think that we are pretty
>representative of today's Theosophists.
Speak for yourself, Jerry... And, please refer to my statements properly. I
did NOT say, a "clear understanding of karma"--but, of the "fundamental LAWS
><<...which "immutably" rules over all action and reaction
>in the universe, from spirit to matter,>>
>Karma does not "rule over" action and reaction, it IS
>action and reaction. Or is this just my own misguided
>interpretation of what you see as clear?
Yes, it is. Again, you misinterpret what I said. I was still referring to
the LAWS of karma--as stated in the 2nd fundamental principle of
theosophy--if you don't already know. I really wish you would stop taking
what I say out of context. Or, are you using these feigned
misinterpretations just for the sake of argument, or as a basis for sarcasm
(either to put me down or to pump up your own ego?:-). In any event, you
should know better.
> >>no logical credibility can be given to "enlightenment in one
>If you see none, then give it none, and such a thing will
>indeed be unreal and impossible for you.
What has personal beliefs got to do with what I said? But, I suppose--since
you must believe it possible for you--that you are ready to become another
Milarepa. I can't wait to see it happen (although I wouldn't want to be one
of your victims in the early stages of the process.:-). However, you've got
me wrong again... I was still referring to "enlightenment in one lifetime"
(in the sense of Milarepa, as a special case--who supposedly went from black
magician to fully enlightened bodhisattva in ONE lifetime)--which you said
should be the "goal" for all us "self-defeating" theosophists. Fortunately,
I don't see too many 'black magicians' among us these days. Do you? Are
>Enlightenment in a single lifetime is the fruition of countless
>past lives. For Buddha. For Milarepa. For me. For you. For everyone. The
>doctine is not opposed to that of reincarnation
>but rather a slightly different way of looking at it. If we
>think enlightenment is impossible in this life, it will be.
But "enlightenment in ONE life" as you put it, by referencing Milarepa, is
not enlightenment in the LAST life--after more than one previous incarnations
on the path. Sure, we are just talking about two different things. I was
talking about Milarepas special case, and you are talking about anyone who
may be on his last lifetime of practice before enlightenment (in the sense of
a pratyeka or a bodhisattva Buddha choice). How many theosophist do you
think can be in a position to make Milarepa's choice? So, no one thinks that
enlightenment in THIS lifetime is impossible to obtain. But enlightenment
in ONE lifetime, as Milarepa did, may be a very remote possibility, if not
impossible for most of us. (Present company excepted, I'm sure.:~)
>Always a pleasure to discuss important topics with you, Leon.
I'm not so sure I agree with that.:-) For me it's been more like fun. (I
tried to give up thinking about pleasure and pain many lifetimes ago...
Although, sometimes, with not much success when I have a toothache.:-(
...Or, gasp at the "beauties of nature" (in their skimpy bikinis./:-)
It's been fun arguing with you (whoever you are--since I only know YOU by
what YOU say in these posts). As for the "real" you... No hard feelings
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