June 2012 Newsletter

The following articles are reproduced from the June 2012 Newsletter to members. Non-members may or may not be able to relate to the contents.  


Adventures in Theosophy


Excerpts from Adventures in Theosophy by Dr George S. Arundale, President of the Theosophical Society from 1934 to 1945.

Reprinted from the February 2012 edition of The Theosophist 




Expand through the Kingdoms of Nature

No member of the Theosophical Society is ready for deeper study until, and unless, he has Theosophical knowledge of the kingdoms of Nature. He must amplify and fulfill the First Object of the Theosophical Society by bringing within his ken a realization of what is the brotherhood of the mineral kingdom, the vegetable kingdom, the animal kingdom, the human kingdom. He must know something definite about these kingdoms, not merely from the standpoint of actual information conveyed in Theosophical literature, but also through his own individual expansion of consciousness into the kingdom concerned.


We must be able to sit down by the sea or by the side of a mountain, or near rocks, stones and earth, and be able to project our spirit into them so that, little by little, after many a trial and effort and failure, we are able to enter into the spirit of the rock, the sea, the earth, the mountain. Thus, apart from our Theosophical knowledge (which is a very good introduction to this expansion of consciousness), in addition to it, in fulfillment of it, we unify our consciousness by a series of experiments with the particular kingdom with which we happen to be for the moment concerned.


Contact the Kings of Each Kingdom  

Especially should we seek to expand our consciousness so that we enter into the spirit of the kings of each kingdom. For example, we can enter into the spirit of the jewels of the mineral kingdom — the ruby, sapphire, diamond, opal, emerald, any precious stone which especially appeals to us. There is nothing more delicate, nothing more unfolding and expanding, than to hold a precious jewel in the hand, especially if the jewel has not been tampered with by man by being put in some incongruous setting. If we can lose ourselves in some jewel we hold in the palm of the hand, we can enter into the spirit of the kingship of that kingdom, because we are contacting a very king of the kingdom itself.


It is the same with the vegetable kingdom. Take our Banyan tree, which is far more spiritually evolved than any other Banyan tree. This is natural when we think of those great personages who have gathered in its atmosphere. We can enter into the spirit of the vegetable kingdom through that tree as we can enter into the spirit of the mineral kingdom through a jewel. The jewel, the tree, are an Open Sesame to the kingdoms to which they belong. We can do the same with the animal kingdom.


Commune with the Voice of the Silence  

But that is not all. It is not enough for the student during his earlier years in Theosophy to have these communions with the various kingdoms of Nature, and obviously with the human kingdom no less. He ought also to have communion with the voice of the Silence. If only we could commune with the voice of the Silence of growth, as it can be heard everywhere, though perhaps better at particular times or in particular moods! I am very much afraid, especially in India, where without exception everybody has been brought up in the Western system of education or has been subordinated to the whole of the Western system in his professional career, that there are very few who can really commune with Nature, who can understand what nature is, and can hear the voice of the Silence of her growth.


We do not know much about the science of Silence, for we are always so busy doing something. We are occupied the whole day long in rushing hither and thither, in going from this place to that place, in reading this or that, there is not enough time left for being. However much we may read or know with the mind, that is little as compared with being, with the building of the Realities of Life into the Eternal Self which we never lose, even when we enter into the heaven world. When we pass through the valley of the shadow of death, the physical body disintegrates, and the etheric body, the astral body and the mind body disintegrate sooner or later. Even the higher mind body may disintegrate and, if the Theosophical student has penetrated, during his life, into the depths of Theosophy and has not been content merely with superficialities, he will live in a heaven world beyond even the higher regions of the mind. The mind, the emotions, the physical body will have gone. It is the Eternal body we must learn to build with the aid of mind, emotions and physical body, but only with their aid.


I sometimes wonder how many members of the Theosophical Society are building with the matter of the Eternal their own eternal vehicles. We may have a member who knows a great deal of Theosophy, can quote from the whole range of our classic literature, and yet his actual spiritual growth may be comparatively small.



About The Invisible Helpers

By C. W. Leadbeater


It is one of the most beautiful characteristics of Theosophy that it gives back to people in a more rational form everything which was really useful and helpful to them in the religions which they have outgrown. Many who have broken through the chrysalis of blind faith, and mounted on the wings of reason and intuition to the freer, nobler mental life of more exalted levels, nevertheless feel that in the process of this glorious gain a something has been lost—that in giving up the beliefs of their childhood they have also cast aside much of the beauty and the poetry of life.


If, however, their lives in the past have been sufficiently good to earn for them the opportunity of coming under the benign influence of Theosophy, they very soon discover that even in this particular there has been no loss at all, but an exceeding great gain—that the glory and the beauty and the poetry are there in fuller measure than they had ever hoped before, and no longer as a mere pleasant dream from which the cold light of common sense may at any time rudely awaken them, but as truths of nature which will bear investigation—which become only brighter, fuller and more perfect as they are more accurately understood.


A marked instance of this beneficent action of Theosophy is the way in which the invisible world (which, before the great wave of materialism engulfed us, used to be regarded as the source of all living help) has been restored by it to modern life. All the charming folk-lore of the elf, the brownie and the gnome, of the spirits of air and water, of the forest, the mountain and the mine, is shown by it to be no mere meaningless superstition, but to have a basis of actual and scientific fact behind it. Its answer to the great fundamental question: “If a man dies, shall he live again?” is equally definite and scientific, and its teaching on the nature and conditions of the life after death throws a flood of light upon much that, for the Western world at least, was previously wrapped in impenetrable darkness.


It cannot be too often repeated that in this teaching as to the immortality of the soul and the life after death, Theosophy stands in a position totally different from that of ordinary religion. It does not put forward these great truths merely on the authority of some sacred book of long ago; in speaking of these subjects it is not dealing with pious opinions, or metaphysical speculations, but with solid, definite facts, as real and as close to us as the air we breathe or the houses in which we live—facts of which many among us have constant experience—facts among which lies the daily work of some of our students, as will presently be seen. I who now write these words am telling you of things which have been familiar to me for more than forty years, which are now much more real and important to me than the matters of the physical plane.


I take it that most of my readers are already acquainted with the general Theosophical conception of the world beyond the grave—that it is not far away or intrinsically different from this world, but on the contrary that it is really a mere continuation of it, a life without the drawback of a physical body—a life which for those who are in any way intellectual or artistic is quite infinitely superior to this, although it may sometimes seem monotonous to those who have neither spiritual, intellectual nor artistic development.


In that life, as in this, there are many people who need assistance, and we should be ready to try to give it in any way that we can, for there is a vast amount to be done, and that along many different lines. The idea of helping in that world is not confined to Theosophists, but I do not think that, until the Theosophical Society propounded it, it was ever taken up in a scientific, definite and organized way. Still, by no means all the helpers are members of our Society. The dead have always aided the dead, and they have often tried to comfort the living, but until the Theosophical line of study opened before us, I think that comparatively few living people worked directly in the astral world. A great number of living people have always worked indirectly, as for example by prayers for the dead; but such effort is generally somewhat vague, because those who make it do not usually know much of the real state of affairs on the other side of the grave. But in the great Roman Catholic Church men have always prayed for those who have departed this life in God’s faith and fear, and that prayer is by no means an empty form.


The above is an excerpt from The Invisible Helpers



A Study In Consciousness Study Class


On 19 June 2012 we shall commence our main study class this year on A Study in Consciousness, one of the greatest works of Annie Besant.


We expect to take 20 or more sessions to complete our study of the book. The Study Class will be conducted weekly on Tuesday evenings from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m.

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