THEOSOPHY, Vol. 16, No. 6, April, 1928
(Pages 248-249; Size: 7K)
[Part 6 of a 12-part series]
WHEN our own internal determination is to know the truth, for the sake of truth, we have taken a step. It signifies for each one that his own real Self is, by his trend of thought, finding a channel for expression. This will grow.
Do not let the conditions which surround you, contrasted with what you can see, weigh upon you. All that is necessary is for each one to do his duty by every duty. None is small and unimportant.
Duty is not what other people think we ought to do. Duty is what we ourselves see to do. To fulfil that is the great desideratum.
Attachment to things or results comes by thinking about them. We can have no attachment for a thing we don't think about; nor any like or dislike. While doing the best we know by every act and present duty, we need not attach ourselves to any particular form of result. Leave results to the Law: they will surely come in accordance with it.
Having done our duty as we see it, we should resign all personal interest in the results. Whatever the results, each can take them as that which his true Self desired.
It is motive alone that marks the line between black and white. But what is needed in the world is knowledge. Good motive may save moral character, but it does not ensure those thoughts and acts which make for the highest good of humanity.
Theosophy is the path of knowledge. It was given out in order, among other things, that good motive and wisdom might go hand in hand.
If it is remembered that the purpose of life is to learn, and that life is all made up of learning, the ordinary duties of everyday existence are seen to be the means by which we learn many things.
A mental bias cannot be changed even by one so wise and powerful as a Master. If the one in error cannot see his fault, nothing can be done. Another life in a humbler station, the lesson may be learned. As I understand it, Masters cannot interfere with Karma.
It is not what we go through that counts; it is what we learn from it. No one can know anything for another; each has to know for himself. No vicarious atonement, no vicarious transmission of knowledge, is possible.
But the direction in which knowledge lies may be pointed out; the steps which will lead us in that direction may be shown. That only can be done by Those who have passed that way before. It is exactly what is being done.
They say that one phase of the path is the cheerful and effective performance of small, plain duties.
The thing to do is to meet anything and everything exactly as it comes. We need not take the position of providing for a "rainy day," which is just figuring for ourselves. Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof. Take care of today. Never mind the next hour. Take care of this one. Take care of every moment, every hour as it comes along, fearing nothing, doubting nothing, in full confidence, relying on the Law of our own natures. That is duty.
COMPILER'S NOTE: The following is a separate item which followed the above article but was on the same page. I felt it was useful to include it here:
WHAT IS THE "DAILY INITIATION"?
It is supposed by some that initiation is always and in every case a set and solemn occasion for which the candidate is prepared and notified of in advance. While there are some initiations surrounded by such solemnities as these, the daily one, without success in which no aspirant will ever have the chance to try for those that are higher, comes to the disciple with almost each moment. It is met in our relations with our fellows, and in the effects upon us of all the circumstances of life. And if we fail in these, we never get to the point where greater ones are offered. If we cannot bear momentary defeat, or if a chance word that strikes our self-love finds us unprepared, or if we give way to the desire to harshly judge others, or if we remain in ignorance of some of our most apparent faults, we do not build up that knowledge and strength imperatively demanded from whoever is to be master of nature.
It is in the life of every one to have a moment of choice, but that moment is not set for any particular day. It is the sum total of all days; and it may be put off until the day of death, and then it is beyond our power, for the choice has then been fixed by all the acts and thoughts of the lifetime. We are self-doomed at that hour to just the sort of life, body, environment, and tendencies which will best carry out our karma. This is a thing solemn enough, and one that makes the "daily initiation" of the very greatest importance to each earnest student. But all of this has been said before, and it is a pity that students persist in ignoring the good advice they receive.
Do you think that if a Master accepted you He would put you to some strange test? No, He would not, but simply permitting the small events of your life to have their course, the result would determine your standing. It may be a child's school, but it takes a man to go through it.
--William Q. Judge
[Part 7 of a 12-part series]
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