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Series 1:

WHITE MAGIC

Study Set 2:

Group Dynamics


Contents

Seed Thought
Reading Assignment
Recommended additional reading (optional)
Written Work to be Completed and E-mailed
Letter from Teaching Staff
Paper on Meditation.
Three Charts:
...1 - Science of Meditation
...2 - Cosmic Physical Plane
...3 - Cosmic Gaseous Sub-plane
Interrelation of Meditation, Group Consciousness and Service
Glossary of Terms


SEED THOUGHT for Meditation Work

Service is an inherent soul urge, a soul attitude.
And the soul is, by its very nature, group conscious. 

Service, then, is the spontaneous effect of soul contact and works out as right group relations (whether in the family, city, nation, or world community). 


READING ASSIGNMENT

A Treatise on White Magic 53 - 90

Recommended additional reading (optional):

A Treatise on White magic (Index references for "Group" 655)


WRITTEN WORK  

Please answer the following questions out of your own thinking, rather than searching through the book or study set for quotable answers. You are urged to give considerable thought to the written work. The more thought you give to it, the more spiritual help you will receive through your studies. These are quite searching questions. The effort you give to expressing your thinking about them is in itself a method of calling into activity hitherto unused parts of your mental equipment.

1.) Human consciousness evolves through the following stages:

Unconsciousness
Consciousness
Self-Consciousness
Group Consciousness -- and eventually
Super-Consciousness.

Which attitudes of mind and heart and which traits of character comprise Group Consciousness? What attitudes and traits would you expect to find in a group conscious person?

2.) Recognizing that different values prevail in personality affairs and in group work, which traits of' character are usually considered "virtues" in the development of the personality, but are detrimental to group progress? Phrasing this question a bit differently: Which traits of character are popularly considered PERSONALITY ASSETS, but in a group are recognized as GROUP LIABILITIES?

3.) If we in Arcana are training for true service, whom do we expect to serve? And how?

4.) What relationship do you see between WHITE MAGIC and GROUP DYNAMICS?

5.) State briefly four rules whereby the average aspirant can be of real service to his environment, whatever his personal situation may be.


Dear Fellow Server:

It is our hopeful expectation that this Study Set will enhance your sense of' relatedness with your environment.

We further hope that your steadiness in daily meditation is making real to you the kinship in consciousness between individual units in a meditating group.

The meditation work is carefully planned to produce certain results in the subtle bodies. Correct alignment of the vehicles scientifically reorganizes the etheric body. This inner reorganization in turn results in a re-arrangement of the whole life into a pattern most suitable to the full expression and pure spiritual intent of the inner god, the soul.

The soul, remember, is group conscious. The soul is an expert in group relations. The soul by its very nature responds readily, joyously and creatively to the "Way of Group Progress".

A human being, is, in his entirety, a group. He comprises a complex, highly organized system of a multitude of lives spreading through several planes of consciousness. Each department of himself puts him in relation with other lives outside himself. As his consciousness expands, normally within the normal evolution of the Larger Life of which he is a part, or more rapidly as a result of occult meditation, he finds that he inevitably becomes aware of being involved in more and more relationships. Partly, this is due to recognition of relations that had existed all along, of which he had been previously unaware. Partly, as our field of observation expands, we tend to enter into new relationships.

So, there is the inevitable stage of growth wherein we tend to spread ourselves too thin, when the exuberance of fellowship exceeds our ability to play our full part; when the desire to carry a full share of the load, in many efforts, strains our time schedule, our nerves, our disposition, and even strains relationships! What then?

Persistence in meditation offers automatic solution of many perplexing problems in human relations.

A steady inflow of soul energy will systematically integrate your personality, in turn making you more capable in whatever you undertake.

A strengthening cable of consciousness from the wise and loving soul to the waking awareness in the physical brain, will guide you to drop from your busy schedule those activities that can be left just as well to other hands, gradually releasing more of your thought and time and effort to urgent spiritual tasks that will not be done if you do not do them.

Occasionally, especially in the early stages of meditation, a student will find himself participating in two meditating groups. On this point, we must sound an emphatic warning. Attempting to follow more than one meditation program can only lead to trouble.

The Staff of ARCANA is prepared to safeguard meditative progress within the scope of any work we assign. We cannot reasonably be expected to guide and protect meditative practices not assigned by us, or pursued by the student without our knowledge.

Even with a cautiously planned, evenly paced, previously tested meditative program, the easiest thing to bring about is over-stimulation. Periodic episodes of over-stimulation are to be expected; dealing with normal and inevitable problems of over-stimulation is part and parcel of our training. This we are prepared to do; training in ARCANA will prepare you, too, to fully understand and safely deal with such problems. This is an important service we can render in a period of increasingly widespread interest in meditation.

We are not prepared to deal with problems caused by trying to mix and blend two systems of meditation. We will not be held responsible for any such eventuality.

For safety, we feel this should be mentioned once. For reassurance, we add that such over-eagerness seldom occurs at this stage of spiritual unfoldment. Should it occur, conscientious performance of all the group disciplines would, very soon, convince the thoughtful student that: If one system of occult meditation occupies your consciousness round-the-clock, two systems would be psychologically impossible - as well as superfluous. If one system reorganizes your etheric body, two systems would create inner chaos.

On a note of quiet confidence, and in loving appreciation of your fellowship in study and in growth,

Your steadfast friends,

The Staff of ARCANA.


NOTES ON MEDITATION (From the notebook of a member in a Meditation Workshop.)  
 

Daily meditation is an act of cooperation between personality and soul.

The wise student meditates as soon after waking as possible, and does his evening review as near to the end of the day as possible. That to which we give first serious attention in the morning, and last serious attention of the evening, governs the whole of our life. The purpose of meditation and the evening review is to bring the whole life under the rulership of the Soul.

If you fall asleep during the evening review, check your sleep habits and general health. Perhaps you are trying to do the review at too late an hour.

If you fall asleep during meditation, again check your sleep habits. Are you getting enough sleep for physical well-being? Perhaps you are trying to do the meditation too early in the morning or too soon after rising.

The wise server values regularity more than zeal. Fanaticism and excess of any kind have no rightful place in the radiant, rhythmic life of meditation and service. Going to the extreme in one direction is quite likely to lead to the extreme in the opposite direction, such as feverish intensity of effort leading to exhaustion and breakdown of progress. Swinging from one extreme to another indicates the emotional nature has gained the upper hand; extreme fluctuation is characteristic of the emotional plane of consciousness. The mental plane of consciousness, on the other hand, is steadier by nature. As the individual becomes more mentally focused, his life and affairs will be regulated better.

Regularity in daily meditation is very helpful in establishing a well regulated life. A well-regulated daily life provides the ideal atmosphere in which to unfold and develop the spiritual nature through meditation. The interrelation of the morning meditation and the remainder of the day is a most beneficent circle, eventually producing a well rounded out server on both subjective (soul) and outer levels.

Meditate before eating. Digestion of food draws the flow of blood into the area of stomach and intestines, which interferes with the lifting and focusing of the forces of all three bodies (physical, emotional and mental) into the head area during meditation.

Some students might wish to bathe and dress before meditating. In order to place meditation ahead of the day's activities, it is better to make the preparation for meditation brief: do only those things which will make the physical body comfortable enough not to be distracting.

When you sit down to meditate, stretch and wiggle to adjust the body and relieve any unnecessary physical tension. Sit comfortably but upright in a chair, with hands and feet crossed in an easy manner. Crossing the extremities helps to bring the etheric counterpart of the dense body into a posture of containment. It is very important to contain (etherically) the spiritual energies brought in during meditation, allowing time and opportunity for their proper assimilation even ' though you may not be aware in the physical brain that anything new did come in!

Digestion is an essential factor of nourishment on any level of life. Physically, food must be fully digested in order to energize the dense body. Mentally, the reader must digest what he leads. The thoughtful student will ponder over his studies in solitude; then he will patiently and experimentally apply each newly assimilated bit of knowledge to the important business of living. Spiritually, the poised, well contained meditator learns to hold within his consciousness the energies within his being until they have had time to permeate his consciousness, until the demands of increasing service responsibility call forth the new energies into practical constructive expression.

Conversely, the inexperienced meditator needs to be careful that he does not dissipate and waste the new energies by "talking the good life" instead of living it! The eager, enthusiastic reader of occult books needs to be careful lest he talk about his newly discovered knowledge before he really-understands it, thus confusing his own thinking about it and creating general confusion upon the plane of mind through which he moves, ever talking.
 

Chart 1: THE SCIENCE OF MEDITATION (Page 961 Cosmic Fire)

Chart 2: COSMIC PHYSICAL PLANE (Page 817 Cosmic Fire)

Chart 3: THE COSMIC GASEOUS SUBPLANE (Page 823 Cosmic Fire)


INTERRELATION OF MEDITATION, GROUP CONSCIOUSNESS AND SERVICE

The result of all contact achieved in meditation and the measure of our success, will be determined by the ensuing service of the race.

Service is a definite technique of atonement.

This Law of Service is something which may not be escaped. Evasion brings its penalties, if that evasion is conscious. Ability to serve marks a definite stage of advance upon the Path., and until that stage is reached, spontaneous service rendered in love and guided by wisdom, cannot be given. What is found up to that time is good intention, mixed motives, and oft fanaticism.

This law is the imposition upon the planetary rhythm of certain energies and impulses which emanate from that sign of the zodiac (Aquarius) into which we are steadily moving. Therefore, there is no escape.

This Law of Service was expressed for the first time fully by the Christ two thousand years ago. He was the forerunner of the Aquarian Age, and hence His constant emphasis upon the fact that He was the water of Life", the "living water" which men needed. Hence the esoteric name of this law is that of "water and the fishes". The Piscean age slowly, very slowly prepared the way for the divine expression of service, which will be the glory of the coming centuries. Today, we have a world which is steadily coming to the realization that "no man liveth unto himself", and that only as the love ' about which so much has been written and spoken, finds its outlet in service, can man begin to measure up to his innate capacity.

Service is usually interpreted as exceedingly desirable and it is seldom realized how very difficult service essentially is. It involves so much sacrifice of time and interest and of one's own ideas, it requires exceedingly hard work, because it necessitates deliberate effort ' conscious wisdom, and the ability to work without attachment. These qualities are not easy of attainment by the average aspirant, and yet today the tendency to serve is an attitude which is true of a vast majority of the people of the world. Such has been the success of the evolutionary process.

Service can be defined briefly as the spontaneous effect of soul contact.

It (service) will be a living flow, and a spontaneous giving forth, and the life, power and love demonstrated, being set forth from soul levels ' will have a potent, attractive force upon the group units with which the disciple may come in contact in the three worlds of soul expression. There are no other worlds wherein the soul may at this time thus express itself. Nothing can stop or arrest the potency of this life of natural, loving service, except in those cases wherein the personality gets in the way. Then service, as the Teachers on the inner side of life understand it, gets distorted and altered into busyness. It becomes changed into ambition, into an effort to make others serve as we think service should be rendered, and into a love of power which hinders true service instead of into love of our fellow men. There is a point of danger in every life when the theory of service is grasped, and the higher law is recognized; then the imitative quality of the personality, its monkey nature, and the eagerness of a high grade aspiration can easily mistake theory for reality, and mistake the outer gesture of a life of service for the natural, spontaneous flow of soul life through its mechanism of expression.

The need for an increasing subtlety of discrimination is constant, and all dedicated students are urged to take stock of themselves at this time. There must be an increasing emphasis upon the need for harmlessness. Harmlessness prepares the way for the inflow of life; harmlessness dissipates the obstructions to the free outpouring of love; harmlessness is the key to the release of the lower nature from the grip of the world illusion and from the power of phenomenal existence.

Service is, par excellence, the technique of correct group relations, whether it be the right guidance of an anti-social child in a family, the wise assimilation of a troublemaker in a group, the handling of anti-social groups in our big cities, the correct technique to be employed in child guidance in our educational centers or the relation between the religious and political parties, or between nation and nation. All of this is part of the new and growing Science of Service. The imposition of this soul law will eventually bring light into a distracted world, and release human energies in right directions.

The first effect of the inflowing force of the soul, which is the major factor leading to demonstrated service, is to integrate the personality, and to bring all the three lower aspects of the man into one serving whole.

The second thing which will occur will be a deepening of the life of meditation, and a more frequent illumining of the mind by the light of the soul.

An integrated, intelligent personality is adequate to deal with the working out of the server's part in the active work of the world, provided his vision is not blurred by personal ambition nor his activity such that it degenerates into a sense of rush and a display of busy feverishness. It takes the soul itself to reveal to the poised and peaceful mind the next step to be taken in the work of world evolution, through the impartation of ideas.

I call you to service, but would remind you that the service discussed here will only be possible when we have a clearer vision of the goal of meditation, and learn to preserve, during the day, the attitude of inner spiritual orientation. As we learn to obliterate and efface out of our consciousness ourselves as the central figure in our life drama, then and then only can we measure up to our real potentialities as servers of the Plan.
   
A Treatise on the Seven Rays, Vol. II

It might be wise here to elucidate somewhat the idea underlying ceremonial and ritual. There is so much revolt at this time against ceremonial, and so many good and well-meaning people regard themselves as having outgrown and transcended ritual. They pride themselves on having attained that so-called "liberation", forgetting that it is only the sense of individuality that permits this attitude, and that no group work is ever possible without some form of ritual. The refusal therefore to participate in uniformity of action is no sign of a liberated soul.

All service is governed by ritual.

One of the first lessons that humanity will learn under the potent influence of the seventh ray is that the soul controls its instrument, the personality, through ritual, or through the imposition of a regular rhythm, for rhythm is what really designates a ritual. When aspirants to discipleship impose a rhythm upon their lives they call it discipline, and they feel happy about it. What groups do who are gathered together for the performance of any ritual or ceremony whatsoever (Church, ritual, Masonic work, the drill of the army or navy, business organizations, the pro er functioning of a home., of a hospital, or of an entertainment, etc.) is of an analogous nature, for it imposes on the participants a simultaneous performance, an identical undertaking, or ritual. No one on this earth can evade ritual or ceremonial, for the rising and setting of the sun imposes a ritual, the cyclic passing of the years, the potent movements of the great centers of population, the coming and the going of trains, of ocean liners and of mails, and the regular broadcasting of the radio organizations, -- all of these impose a rhythm upon humanity, whether this is recognized or not.

There is no evading the process of ceremonial living. The Deity works with ritual and is subjected to the ceremonials of the universe. Thus is the temple of the Lord built by the ceremonial of the Builders. Every ant hill and every beehive is equally impelled by instinctive rituals and by rhythmic impulses. The new science of psychology could well be described as the science of the rituals and rhythms of the body, of the emotional nature and of the mental processes, or of those ceremonials (inherent, innate, or imposed by the self, by circumstances and by environment) which affect the mechanism through which the soul functions.

Through the scientific ritual of meditation this refocusing can be brought more rapidly about. Through the scientific culture of the ritual of service it can be still further developed. The ritual of the solar system is the result of the meditation of God and the act of divine service, carried on throughout the entire period of manifestation. The subordination of the lower life to the ritual of service is literally the tuning in of the individual to the rhythm of the life, heart and mind of God Himself. From that tuning-in, automatically a spiritual development follows.
    A Treatise on the Seven Rays, Vol. I

Rhythm is the progenitor of cooperation. From hoary antiquity people have understood the significance of rhythmic choirs, of musical movements; thus has the consciousness accumulated knowledge about the impelling force of collective labor. People knew long ago that rhythm kindled collective fires and helped in avoiding irritation and disunity. It affirmed identical aspiration, therefore music is the sign of unity before collective work. It is a pity that modern music is so often lacking in rhythm....... Lack of rhythm is disunity, but crude rhythm is stupor. Thus only a fiery (fire of spirit, M.R.) consciousness will prompt the refinement of rhythm. One may ponder over many things, but we shall always return to the fiery understanding. The abode of Agni (kingdom of heaven, M.R.) is opened not by reasoning but by the harmony of rhythm..... Only the true rhythm carries us forward and preserves us from delay. We know all the detrimental results of delay, as in movement, so also in spirit. It is inadmissible to have a broken rhythm, at times retarded and at other times accelerated. Thus an enormous and useless expenditure of energy takes place. He will not retreat who has begun to advance in fiery rhythm. Precisely this rhythm saves one from sorrowful ponderings and leads one forward in spirit; therefore let us not limit the effectiveness of the rhythm by external motion only, let us introduce it into spiritual life.
    from - Fiery World II, Agni Yoga Series

In the age into which we are now emerging, the Aquarian Age, work will reach a very high point of development, and the world will be saved and reconstructed by GROUPS far more than by individuals. In the past we have had world saviours -- Sons of God Who have given to men a message which brought an increase of light to the people. Now, in the fullness of time, and through the process of evolution, there is emerging a group who will bring salvation to the world and who (embodying group ideas and emphasizing the true meaning of the Church of Christ) will so stimulate and energize the minds and souls of men that the n w age will be ushered in by an outpouring of the Love, Knowledge and Harmony of God Himself, as well as by the reappearance of the Christ in Whom all these three faculties of divinity will be embodied.

Religions in the past have been founded by a great soul, by an Avatar, and by an outstanding spiritual personality. The stamp of their lives and words and teaching has been set upon the race and has persisted for many centuries. What will be the effect of the message of a group Avatar or world Savior? What will be the potency of the work of a group of Knowers of God, enunciating truth and banded together subjectively in the great work of saving the world? What will be the effect of the mission of a group of world Saviours, all Knowers of God in some degree, who supplement each other's efforts, reinforce each other's message, and constitute an organism through which the spiritual energy and principle of spiritual life can make their presence felt in the world, under the direction of the Christ in Visible Presence?

Such a body now exists, with its members in every land. Relatively they are few and far between, but steadily their numbers are increasing, and increasingly their message will be felt. In them is vested a spirit of construction; they are the builders of the new age; to them is given the work of preserving the spirit of truth, and the reorganizing of the thoughts of men so that the racial mind is controlled and brought in to that meditative and reflective condition which will permit it to reorganize the next unfoldment of divinity, which Christ will inaugurate.

The task before the New Group of World Servers is great, but it is not an impossible task. It is engrossing, but it constitutes an imposed life pattern, it can be worked out in every aspect of a man or woman's normal, daily life. Yet at the same time, we are called to abnormal living, and to the shouldering of a definite responsibility.

Souls incarnate in groups, cyclically, under law and in order to achieve right relation with God and with their fellow men.
    from - The Reappearance of the Christ

Basically, it is not desire which prompts the return of an ego to physical incarnation but will and knowledge of the Plan. It is not the need for achieving an ultimate perfection which goads the ego on to experience in form, for the ego is already perfect. The main incentive is sacrifice and service to the lesser lives that are dependent upon the higher inspiration (which the spiritual soul can give) and the determination that they too may attain planetary status equivalent to that of the sacrificing soul. BEAR THIS ALWAYS IN MIND AS YOU STUDY THE SUBJECT OF REBIRTH. In themselves, rebirth and reincarnation are misleading terms and "cyclic impulsion," "intelligent purposeful repetition" and "conscious in-breathing and out-breathing" would describe more accurately this cosmic process. It is, however, difficult for you to grasp this idea ' for it necessitates the ability to identify oneself with the One Who thus breathes -- the planetary Logos -- and the entire theme must therefore remain relatively obscure until initiation has been taken. Esoterically speaking, the point of greatest interest lies in the fact that it is GROUP REBIRTH which is taking place all the time and that the incarnation of the individual is only incidental to this greater happening. This has been largely ignored or forgotten because of the intense and selfish interest in personal experience and living, evidenced in the speculative details anent individual return given in the current so-called occult books, most of which are largely inaccurate and certainly unimportant.

An intelligent understanding of the Plan is needed before the real truth anent reincarnation can emerge with clarity in the public consciousness. Groups of souls come into incarnation cyclically and together in order to further the Plan and permit that interplay to proceed between spirit and matter which makes manifestation possible and which extends the working out of the divine ideas as they exist in the Mind of God. When the Plan (as the Hierarchy understands it) is more familiar in its objectives and its mode of functioning upon the outer plane of life, we shall see a complete change in the presentation of the teaching concerning the Law of Rebirth. We shall see more clearly the existent synthesis of:

1.The divine plan as it manifests in time.

2.The basic relations as they manifest in space.

3.The developing effects as they demonstrate in groups.

4.The evolving understanding as intellect merges into the intuition.

5.The fivefold nature of the logoic expression as it unfolds itself through the five kingdoms.

And this, when correctly intuited, will produce a revelation, and a presentation of this abstruse theme beyond anything at this time sensed by man. It is one of the secrets of the first initiation and these secrets are today in process of externalization.

It will be found that rebirth is, in truth, a magical and magnetic interplay between the form side of life and life itself.

I would suggest to investigators that the entire theme of "cyclic impulse" be approached FROM THE ANGLE OF THE GROUP, forgetting, as this is done, the glamour of the personality impress. The sweep of known history will aid in this, indicating -- as it does -- the possibility of clarification and the usefulness of classifying and isolating group activity and character down the ages. When the major reincarnating groups are thus distinguished and their work for the fourth kingdom along many lines is more clearly seen, then the whole subject will be better understood, evoking the play of the intuition. This demonstrates a second fact of importance, namely, that, as yet. it will only be possible to trace the progress of advanced souls incarnation and not trace, at this time, the cyclic appearing of the un-evolved. They are the material units" which have to be saved by the more advanced. The theme of service and sacrifice runs, unrecognized, through history. The key to the understanding of these reincarnating, saving factors lies in a coming intuitive ability to recognize the reincarnating groups, as groups and not as individuals, through their ray qualities, and it was for this purpose that I have in Destiny of the Nations a statement as to the rays governing certain nations. Groups are governed by the astrological signs and by the rays just as individuals are, and these rays affect them, via the ruling planets. I have here opened up to you a very wide field of research and I have indicated a most interesting new form of historical investigation and record. The history of the future will be the history of the evolving plans of God as they work out through the serving groups of egos.

Human beings, without initiated vision, are apt to interpret all the signs and their effects in terms of individual man, whereas the purpose of their coordinated influence is both planetary, solar and cosmic.
    A Treatise on the Seven Rays, Vol. III

One thing that is oft overlooked by the pupil when he enters upon the path of probation and starts meditation is that the goal ahead for him is not primarily the completion of his own development but his equipping for service to humanity. His own growth and development are necessarily incidental but are not the goal. His immediate environment and his close associates on the physical plane are his objective in service and if in the endeavor to attain certain qualifications and capacities he overlooks the groups to which he is affiliated and neglects to serve wisely and to spend himself loyally on their behalf he runs the danger of crystallization, falls under the spell of sinful pride, and mayhap even takes the first step toward the left-hand path. Unless inner growth finds expression in group service the man treads a dangerous road.

THREE TYPES OF AFFILIATED GROUPS.

Perhaps I could here give some indications of the groups on the various planes to which a man is assigned. These groups are many and diverse and at different periods of a man's life may change and differ, as he works out from under the obligating karma that governs the affiliation Let us remember too that as a man enlarges his capacity to serve he at the same time increases the size and number of the groups he contacts till he reaches a point in some later incarnation when the world itself is his sphere of service and the multitude those whom he assists. He has to serve in a threefold manner before he is permitted to change his line of action and pass on to other work, -- planetary, systemic or cosmic.

a. He serves first THROUGH ACTIVITY, through the use of his intelligence, using the high faculties of mind and the product of his genius to aid the sons of men. He builds slowly great powers of intellect and in the building overcomes the snare of pride. He takes, then, that active intelligence of his and lays it at the feet of collective humanity, giving of his best for the helping of the race.

b. He serves then THROUGH LOVE, becoming, as time elapses, one of the saviours of men, spending his life and giving of his all through perfect love of his brothers. A life then comes when the utmost sacrifice is made and in love he dies that others may live.

c. He serves then THROUGH POWER. Proved in the furnace to have no thoughts save the good of all around, he is trusted with the power that follows from active love intelligently applied. He works with the law, and bends all his will to make the power of the law felt in the threefold realms of death.

In all these three branches of service you will notice that the faculty of working with groups is one of paramount importance. These groups are diverse., as before I have said, and vary on different planes. Let us briefly enumerate them:

I.-- On the physical plane - The following groups will be found:

a. His family group to which he is usually affiliated for two reasons: one to work out karma and repay his debts; the second, to receive a certain type of physical vehicle that the Ego needs for adequate expression.

b. His associates and friends; the people his environment throws him with, his business associates, his church affiliations, his acquaintances and casual friends, and the people he touches for a brief period and then sees no more. His work with them is twofold again: first to repay an obligation should such a debt have been incurred; and secondly to test out his powers to influence for good those around him, to recognize responsibility and to direct or help. In doing thus, the Guides of the race find out the actions and reactions of a man, his capacity for service, and his response to any surrounding need.

c. His associated band of servers, the group under some Great One that is definitely united for work of an occult and spiritual nature. It may be either a band of' church workers among the orthodox (beginners are tried out here); it may be in social work such as in the labor movements or in the political arena; or it may be in the more definitely pioneer movements of the world, such as the Theosophical Society, the Christian Science movement, the New Thought workers and the Spiritualists. I would add to this, one branch of endeavor that may surprise you, -- I mean the movement of the Soviet in Russia and all the aggressive radical bodies that sincerely serve under their leaders (even when misguided and unbalanced) for the betterment of the condition of the masses.

Thus on the physical plane you have three groups to which a man belongs. He owes a duty to them and he must play his part. Now wherein could danger enter through meditation? Simply in this: that as long as a man's karma holds him to some particular group the thing that he must aim at is to play his part perfectly, so that he may work out from under karmic obligation and advance toward ultimate liberation; besides this he must carry on his group with him to greater heights of usefulness. Therefore, if through meditation of an unsuitable nature he neglects his proper obligation, he delays the purpose of his life, and in another incarnation he will have to play it out. If he builds into that group's causal body (the composite product of the several lines) aught that has not its place properly there, he aids not but hinders, and again that involves danger. Let me illustrate, for clarity is desired:- A student is affiliated with a group that has an over-preponderance of devotees and he has come in for the express purpose of balancing that quality with another factor, that of wise discrimination and mental balance. If he permits himself to be overcome by the group thought-form and becomes himself a devotee, following a devotional meditation and unwisely omitting to balance that group's causal body, he runs into a danger that hurts not only himself but the group to which he belongs.

II.-- On the emotional plane - Here he belongs to several groups such as:

a. His emotional plane family group, which is more thoroughly his own group than the family into which he happens to be born on the physical plane. You will see this demonstrated many times in life when members of an emotional plane family contact each other on the physical plane. Instant recognition ensues.

b. The class within the Hall of Learning to which he is assigned and in which he receives much instruction.

c. The band of Invisible Helpers with whom he may be working and the band of Servers.

All these groups involve obligation and work and all must be allowed for in studying the wise use of meditation. Meditation should increase a persons capacity to discharge his karmic debts, giving clear vision, wise judgment and a comprehension of the work of the immediate moment. Anything that militates against this is dangerous.

III.-- On the mental plane - The groups to be found there may be enumerated a-s follows:

a. The groups of pupils of some one Master to Whom he may be attached, and with Whom he may be working. This is usually only the case when the man is rapidly working out his karma and is nearing the entrance to the Path. His meditation, therefore should be directly under the guidance of his Master, and any formula followed that is not adjusted to a man's need carries with it elements of danger, for the vibrations set up on the mental plane and the forces engendered there are so much more potent than on the lower levels.

b. The egoic group to which he belongs. This is most important for it involves the consideration of the man's ray in the apportioning of meditation.

c. Groups for Specific Purposes.

Groups will later be formed for specific purposes.

Let me enumerate for you some of the aims groups will have in view when they form themselves, and by the use of the Sacred Word, coupled to the true occult meditation, achieve certain results. The time for this is not yet, and need arises not for detailed description, yet if things progress as desired, even YOU may see it somewhat worked out in your lifetime.

1--Groups for the purpose of working on the emotional body, with the object of development, of subjugation, and clarification.

2--Groups for the purpose of mental development, of strengthening equilibrium, and the contacting of higher mind.

3--Groups for the healing of the physical body.

4--Groups whose purpose is to effect alignment, and to clear the channel betwixt the higher and the lower.

5--Groups for the treatment of obsessions and mental diseases.

6--Groups whose work it will be to study reaction to the sounding of the Word, to record and tabulate the consequent geometrical forms, to note its effect on individuals in the groups, and to note the extraneous entities it draws by its attractive force. These must be rather advanced groups, capable of clairvoyant investigation.

7--Groups that definitely work at making contact with the devas, and collaborating with them under the law. During the seventh ray activity, this will be much facilitated.

8--Groups that are definitely and scientifically working on the laws of the rays, and studying color and sound, their individual and group effects, and their interrelation. This is necessarily a select group and only those of high spiritual attainment and those nearing Initiation will be permitted to take part. Forget not that these groups on the physical plane are but the inevitable working out into manifestation of the inner groups of aspirants, pupils, disciples and initiates.

9--Groups that are definitely working under some one Master, and conforming to certain procedure laid down by Him. The members of these groups will therefore be chosen by the Master.

10--Groups working specifically under one of the three great departments and seeking -- under expert guidance -- to influence politically and religiously the world of men., and to speed the processes of evolution as directed from the department of the Lord of Civilization. Some of these groups will work under the Church, others under Masonry, and others will work in connection with the Initiate heads of the great organizations. In considering this you need to remember that the whole world becomes ever more mental as time proceeds, hence the ever-increased scope of this type of work.

11--Other groups will work entirely in what might be termed preparatory work for the future colony (Sixth root race).

12--Problem groups, as they might be called, will be formed to deal with social, economic, political and religious problems as they arise, studying the effects of meditation, colour and sound.

13--Still other groups will deal with child culture, with the individual training of people, with the guidance of persons on the probationary path, and with the development of the higher faculties.

14--Later, when the Great Lord, the Christ, comes with His Masters, there will be a few very esoteric groups, gathered out of all the others, where the members (through graduation and karmic right) will be trained for discipleship and for the first Initiation. There will be seven such groups or centers formed for definite occult training....Only those whose vibratory capacity is adequate will find their way there.
    from - Letters on
Occult Meditation


GLOSSARY


INITIATE

One who is undergoing systematic and strenuous training to expand and illunine his consciousness, which in turn equips him for an inspired life of true service. The Path of Initiation is the final stage of human evolution. This Path is divided into five stages, marked by the five planetary initiations, and leads one out of the human kingdom, the fourth kingdom of nature, into the Kingdom of Souls, the fifth kingdom. Initiation is a forcing process, voluntarily undertaken, self-imposed, self-perpetuated, towards the goal of self-mastery; it admits the candidate into the fifth kingdom ahead of his fellows who are developing and progressing at the slower pace of being swept along in the general growth and unfoldment of All That Is.

MASTER

An initiate of the fifth degree. A citizen of the fifth, the Spiritual, kingdom of nature.

EGO, EGOIC

In the Tibetan's teachings you will find the term "Ego" used as a synonym for "Soul or Higher Self. In our work, Ego means almost the opposite of what it means to the exoteric psychologist, who uses Ego to refer to what we call the "Personality".

Please think this through carefully and do not become confused by it. The word "psychology" literally means knowledge of the soul; yet exoteric psychology does not yet recognize the fact of the- soul as distinct from the integrated personality.

So the psychologist uses the term egotistical to describe the self-centered, self-assertive attitudes of the selfish, separative personality at the stage of dramatic emphasis upon his sense of I-ness. Whereas our teachings will use the term Egoic when referring to whatever concerns, or relates to, the Soul, the Ego, the immortal Self embedded within the various enveloping layers of human nature. The immortal Ego knows itself to be one with all souls; it tends toward cooperation and sacrificial service; anything like separativeness and selfish competition are utterly foreign to its nature.

SUTRATMA

The Life-thread that links the Monad, the Spiritual Self, with the man in incarnation via the nuclei, the permanent atoms, of his various bodies.

SOLAR ANGELS

Spiritual entities of a very high order who planted a spark of mind in animal men, thus effecting the individualization of the human kingdom. The Solar Angel, sometimes called "THE, SOUL ON ITS OWN PLANE" is an initiate of the highest degrees and its involvement with the human kingdom is purely sacrificial and redemptive. The fragment of itself which was planted in animal man early in the history of our planet, is the "embedded aspect", sometimes called the "SOUL IN INCARNATION" and comprises the latent divinity, the potential godliness, in every man which can be developed and unfolded into a life irradiated by the qualities of spiritual will, spiritual love and spiritual activity.


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