THEOSOPHY, Vol. 21, No. 3, January, 1933
(Pages 119-121; Size: 10K)
(Number 3 of a 36-part series)

STUDIES IN THE OCEAN OF THEOSOPHY

III

SINCE Life is a unity, the true teaching regarding Life is a synthesis. Whatever applies to the universal is applicable to the particular. What is true of the greatest is true of the least, in degree. "As was taught of old, the little worlds and the great are copies of the whole, and the minutest insect as well as the most highly developed being are replicas in little or in great of the vast inclusive original." For the Western student, accustomed to the analytical or splitting-off method, by which each phase of existence is viewed as separate and different from the rest, this unitary conception is difficult to grasp. It takes time and patience for him to firmly establish in his mind the infinite multiplicity of the One in the many; to view the Universe as the microcosm expanded; the microcosm as the macrocosm in small. It amounts to a mental revolution, to perceive the basic unity of all things and a moral revolution to discern the fact of Universal Brotherhood thus implied. For, just as the tiniest point reflecting the sun becomes itself a miniature sun, a center of radiating light, so does each least center of consciousness radiate the creative intelligence of All-Self.

Sevenfold is the inherent scheme of manifestation -- this in general and in particular, in infinite range of septenary gradation, down to the finest divisions of matter; the only difference anywhere being that of degree, not of kind. There is nothing but Life; and Life is undivided. All is Consciousness, expressing innate intelligence, cycle within cycle. Each system of worlds, like the mechanism of a clock, wheels through its self-destined course in perfect order and relationship among its own constituent units and with other systems throughout boundless space.

Accordingly, while the "teachings of Theosophy deal for the present chiefly with our earth," Theosophy's "purview extends to all the worlds, since no part of the manifested universe is outside the single body of laws which operate upon us." The primordial seven-fold divisions of all universes "may be laid down roughly as: The Absolute, Spirit, Mind, Matter, Will, Akasa or Æther, and Life. In place of 'the Absolute' we can use the word Space. For Space is that which ever is, and in which all manifestation must take place."

In endeavoring to reduce these highly metaphysical divisions to terms of consciousness, they might be considered as follows: Space as the potentiality of consciousness, the fathomless, unmanifested depth of the power to perceive resident in every being; spirit as the potency of consciousness, or the power to perceive itself; mind as the intelligence of consciousness; matter as its substance aspect, or eternal vehicle; will as its energy, active expression of the eternal ceaseless motion forever pulsing throughout boundless space, whether there be worlds or none; and Life as the movement of consciousness under the intelligent direction of will -- creative, preservative, destructive, and regenerative action. The life-light streaming downward "through the stairway of the seven worlds" constructs those worlds, energizes, preserves, and destroys them -- to again build new stairways on higher spirals at the dawn of other days.

"As to the Absolute we can do no more than say that IT IS. Our knowledge begins with differentiation, and all manifested objects, beings, or powers are only differentiations of the Great Unknown." The matter mentioned in the seven-fold classification and which forms the material base for all differentiation is that "Primordial Matter" symbolized in the Secret Doctrine as the "Ever Invisible Robes" of the "Eternal Parent," who, having "Slumbered Once Again for Seven Eternities," feels desire arise for new Self-expression. Then, from potentiality, potency is produced; matter is stimulated to self-formation; mind, containing "the plan of the Cosmos," becomes active; akasa, impressed with the record of previous evolutions, breathes forth into objectivity; and the life-forces resume their cyclic task of universe building -- all of which but pictures the awakening of the desire and will of beings seeking further experience and education through the fulfillment of natural duty. Never does the pulse of beinghood cease throughout the long night of non-manifestation when the receding of the "Great Breath" has caused all to "disappear into the original source."

"This is the waking and the sleeping of the Great Being: the Day and the Night of Brahma; the prototype of our waking days and sleeping nights as men, of our disappearance from the scene at the end of one little human life, and our return again to take up the unfinished work in another life, in a new day." Correspondence, as indicated, shows the unborn child as potential man, with heartbeat, but no breathing, sense-action, or awareness. With the indrawn breath at birth human potency dawns. The form, of matter, properly nourished, provides means for the functioning of mind. At seven years, the will-being is on the scene.

Again, consider our daily awakening: in sleep, thought is not acting on this plane; the resting form, low of pulse, shallow of breath, is but a potential man of affairs; with the first stir of awakening, however, he becomes a potency. The body responds to the influx of life-force; the mind becomes active, taking up the thread of yesterday and planning for the new day. With this coordination of spirit, mind, and matter, the will becomes focussed; and the man arises to pour his energies into the tasks awaiting him. Thus in the "jog-trot of daily existence," each morning finds Humanity rewriting the great epic of manifestation in its primal seven-fold divisions: "Space, Spirit, Mind, Matter, Will, Akasa or Æther, and Life" are omnipresent, not afar off or theoretical. They can be traced, by analogy and correspondence, in every motion of consciousness. They form the underlying basis for all thought, feeling, and action, from the least of human efforts to the mightiest issues of cosmic evolution.


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:

SEVEN PLANES IN NATURE

If no physical intellect is capable of counting the grains of sand covering a few miles of sea-shore; or to fathom the ultimate nature and essence of those grains, palpable and visible on the palm of the naturalist, how can any materialist limit the laws changing the conditions and being of the atoms in primordial chaos, or know anything certain about the capabilities and potency of their atoms and molecules before and after their formation into worlds? These changeless and eternal molecules -- far thicker in space than the grains on the ocean shore -- may differ in their constitution along the line of their planes of existence, as the soul-substance differs from its vehicle, the body. Each atom has seven planes of being or existence, we are taught; and each plane is governed by its specific laws of evolution and absorption. Ignorant of any, even approximate, chronological data from which to start in attempting to decide the age of our planet or the origin of the solar system, astronomers, geologists, and physicists are drifting with each new hypothesis farther and farther away from the shores of fact into the fathomless depths of speculative ontology. --S.D., I, 150.


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IV
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