Commentary on Letter IX
Future Schools of Meditation
Letters on Occult Meditation
FUTURE SCHOOLS OF MEDITATION.
1. The one fundamental school.
2. Its national subdivisions.
3. The location, personnel, and buildings of the school.
4. The grades and classes.
2. These four themes are the four major subject areas in this study. When these subjects are more fully developed, we shall know enough to strengthen our effective participation (even now) in the process of preparing the way for the development of the future schools of occultism.
FUTURE SCHOOLS OF MEDITATION.
We take up today another of the series of letters on occult meditation, that dealing with "Future Schools of Meditation".
In this letter I shall attempt somewhat to show how the training and development indicated in the other letters will be applied and I shall deal somewhat with prophecy, pointing out what will some day be possible and present, and not what is as yet in any way approachable.
Always it is necessary to have high ideals, and ever the human mind leaps forward to some appointed goal.
If I here outline what may seem a visionary impossibility it is but that I seek to hold up such an ideal, and to give to the race an objective well worth their highest endeavour.
Let us pause a moment and lay down certain postulates anent the present that will (so to speak) clear the ground for future action.
The value of meditation is becoming everywhere admitted. Schools for concentration and methods of mental development are commonly advertised in the daily papers.
True meditation is as yet little understood. Concentration is but the foundation upon which the future work is to be based.
As yet the future structure cannot be raised, due to two causes primarily:—
a. The inherent inability of mind at this juncture to attain the causal level and the consciousness of the causal level.
b. The absence of a Master in personal presence, able and equipped to teach the true scientific development which is the aim of true meditation.
The troubled condition of the world at present is sufficient barrier to any general acceptation of training, and of the scientific development of the vehicles.
These two facts, of time and of high vibration, result in that stability of rhythm which facilitates occult work, and offer a quiet field for mantric and ceremonial enterprise.
These conditions are not to be found in the West, where constant change in every branch of life is found, where [Page 79] frequent rapid shifting of the scene of action causes wide areas of disturbance which militate against any work of a magic nature. The amount of force required to effect certain results does not warrant their use, and time has been allowed to elapse in an effort to produce an equilibrising effect. (TWM 78-79)
These premises are laid down here as a starting point. That some individuals here and there achieve the goal, that some people do master the system of Occult Meditation and make the desired progress is undeniable,
but they are only few in number and those numbers are inappreciable when set against the vast bulk of human beings in incarnation at the same time.
They achieve by right of age-long effort, and because in previous lives they trod the Path or neared the portal of initiation.
But even the average man of intelligence of today—the product, for instance, of western civilisation—is far from being ready for occult training.
Experiments are being made now, unknown oft to the subjects themselves, to see how quickly a man may be pushed through experience and a general hastening of the evolutionary process into a position where it will be safe to train him further.
People in many civilised countries are under supervision, and a method of stimulation and intensification is being applied which will bring to the knowledge of the Great Ones Themselves a mass of information that may serve as a guide to Their future efforts for the race.
Especially are people in
Future Schools of Meditation
In handling this matter we might, as is our usual custom, divide the subject matter under different heads:—
1. The one fundamental School.
2. Its national subdivisions.
3. The location, personnel, and buildings of the School.
4. The grades and classes.
Now I would emphatically point out to you the fact that all that I now impart is a portion of a tentative plan, which has in view the hastening of the evolution of the higher mind, and the bringing under control of the bodies of men, through the power of the God within.
This plan has been drawn up in view of the crying need of a world in which the mental equipment of men is increasing out of all proportion to their emotional balance and to their physical equipment.
RAY V — This ray has been in manifestation for nearly seventy years. It will pass out (by special and unique arrangement) in another fifty years, thus breaking into its own normal cycle, because it is deemed that the needed special impulse has been adequate and that the impetus given to the human "spirit of discovery" has served its purpose. Any further intensification of the mental processes just now (except through the general pervasive effect of the third ray) might prove disastrous. The ray cycles are usually set and determined, but, in collaboration with each other and because of the imminent spiritual Crisis of Approach, the Lord of the Fifth Ray and the Lord of the World have decided temporarily to withdraw this type of force. It will take about fifty years to do this. (DON 143)
The rapid advance of knowledge, the spreading of the educational system which brings the product of many minds into the environment of the very poor, the ability of all to read and write in such a country as America or among the other Anglo-Saxon races, has been the cause of a very real (I might almost say an unexpected) problem arising to confront the Great Ones.
Mental development when paralleled by emotional stability and a strong healthy body is the aim for all.
53. In this aim we have stated one of the objectives of the new esoteric schools.
But now you have mental development paralleled by an unstable astral and a weak, underfed, badly raised physical.
55. Has this undesirable condition been produced exclusively by man’s response to the potency of the fifth ray? Or is his lack of heart response also to blame?
Hence disorder, lack of balance, the clouding of the vision and disproportionate discussion.
56. The thought of “disproportionate discussion” is interesting. There is intended to be a balance between the ability to act and the tendency to think about acting.
58. As well, the production of many thoughtforms can cloud the vision.
Lower mind, instead of being a means to an end and a weapon for use, is in fair [Page 300] way of being a ruler and a tyrant, preventing the play of the intuition and shutting out the abstract mind.
59. We are told that the mind makes a good servant but a poor master.
60. It is interesting to not that not only does lower mind shut out the intuition but the abstract mind as well. The functioning of the abstract mind requires the mental ability to “stand back” or prescind from a plethora of concrete details. Excessive mental activity can prevent this long-range view.
Hence the Masters, if it can in any way be accomplished, purpose a movement that has in view the harnessing of the lower mind through the instrumentality of the people themselves.
61. The new esoteric schools are for the “people”. The problem of excessive mental stimulation is within the “people” and it is they who must participate in the remediation of the problem.
62. Thus, we see that this harnessing of the lower mind will not be imposed by Hierarchy.
63. It is interesting, is it not, to understand the degree to which Hierarchy views the unharnessed concrete mind as a critical problem?
With this object in view They plan to utilise the incoming Ray of Ceremonial Law or Organisation, and the period immediately co-incident or following the coming of the Great Lord, to start these schools (in a small inconspicuous way at first) and bring to the consciousness of men everywhere the following four fundamentals:—
64. This section of text offers us important hints.
65. The seventh ray of Ceremonial Law or Organisation can be used to harness the concrete mind. This is interesting in light of the fact that these two rays (and their representatives) so often work closely together.
66. When will the schools be founded? We are told they will be started during a period—
a. Immediately coincident with the coming of the Great Lord
b. Or following the coming of the Great Lord.
67. Elsewhere, we are told that their founding may even precede His Coming.
68. Apparently, the manifesting power of the incoming seventh ray is needed to bring the new esoteric schools into manifestation.
69. We note that the Hierarchy, itself, is involved in the starting of the schools. In what ways are They involved? Through executive action upon the physical plane? Through inspiring Their disciples to start the schools?
70. As far as incipient beginnings are concerned, the latter method is, I think, more likely.
71. Below are four fundamentals which are to be brought into the consciousness of human beings everywhere?
a. The evolutionary history of man from the mental side.
72. In relation to this fundamental, the history of man’s mental unfoldment will be studied. Man is, after all, manas, and it was the coming of the Lords of the Flame (implanting as They did the spark of mind) that created the human kingdom. It is man’s self-conscious mentality which makes him uniquely man.
b. The septenary constitution of the macrocosm and the microcosm.
73. In occultism we cannot escape the cataloguing of all life forms in relation to the number seven.
74. There can be no clear interpretation of life-processes without reference to the fundamental position of the septenate. For instance, in relation to man, there are seven psychological types.
c. The laws governing man's being.
75. We may consider these the laws relating to man’s personality and its vehicles, and other, higher laws which relate to his soul and even his Spirit.
d. The method of occult development.
76. This is the hierarchical method of developing the latent potentialities of man leading eventually to the portal of initiation.
A beginning has already been made........through the various schools at present extant.......All these are the beginnings of the plan.
77. These are encouraging thoughts. Even in 1920 a beginning had been made in the starting of the schools or, at least, in a process leading to the starting of the schools.
78. It may be inferred that such schools were the Esoteric Section of the Theosophical Society, certain experiments in Masonry such as Co-Masonry, and certain Rosicrucian Orders. Perhaps there were others.
When they are firmly grounded, when they are working smoothly and with public recognition, and when the world of men is being somewhat coloured by them and their subjective emphasis, when they are producing scholars and workers, politicians and scientists and educational leaders who make their impress on their environment, then mayhap will come the time for the founding in exoteric fashion of the true occult school.
79. We see that much was expected of these early schools and their continuing development in our time. Let us tabulate:
a. They had to become firmly grounded
b. They had to work smoothly and with public recognition
c. The world of men had to be colored by them and especially by their subjective emphasis
d. These schools were to produce scholars and workers, politicians and scientists and educational leaders.
e. Those emerging from the schools were to set their impress upon the environment.
80. It can be questioned whether all this has happened. Certain of these requirements have been fulfilled to a certain extent. It may be questioned whether humanity perceives that politicians and scientists and educational leaders have emerged specifically from such schools.
81. In any case, DK expects much of present esoteric and occult schools (i.e., of the “bridging schools”) before true occult schools can emerge exoterically.
82. We do remember that true occult schools have always existed on the inner side.
By that I mean that if the earlier schools and colleges do their work satisfactorily they will have demonstrated to the world of men that the subjective is the true reality and that the lower is but the stepping stone to the higher.
83. This is the work of modern bridging schools in the fields of occultism and esotericism.
84. We are still very much in the ‘day of the bridging schools’ and it will be up to us and disciples like ourselves to ensure that they fulfill the kinds of requirements listed above.
85. There are now (it seems fair to say) millions of men and women everywhere who believe that “the subjective is the true reality”. Perhaps, to an extent, contemporary esoteric and occult schools have achieved something of this purpose.
86. Even though none of us is a member of a true “future occult school”, we have much important, foundational work to accomplish.
This subjective reality being universally admitted will, therefore, permit of the founding of a chain of inner schools [Page 301] ...that will be publicly recognised.
87. Perhaps, however, we are not quite a far as we should be in the influencing of human consciousness along these lines. We can hardly say that the subjective reality is, today, universally admitted.
88. Our spiritual propaganda work has not yet been entirely successful. Some eighteen years remain until 2025—the conclusion of the Period of the Forerunner. During this time, the necessary spiritual propaganda work must be both extensive and intensive so that the subjective reality may come to be more universally admitted, thus paving the way for the founding of a chain of inner schools which may slowly gain public recognition.
89. DK is presenting us with work to be done. It hardly makes sense to say that we cannot undertake at least this kind of work in the long-term development of the esoteric schools. And when we do the kind of work indicated, it is important to realize that it is, indeed, work in preparation for the externalization of the future schools of occultism. Work done now (and rightly done) is intimately related to the future success of what we might call the ‘New Esoteric Schools Initiative’.
This will never at any time obviate the necessity for always having an esoteric and secret section, for always there will be certain truths and facts of dangerous import to the uninitiated;
90. DK is speaking even of modern esoteric schools (i.e., the bridging schools)—they must always have their esoteric or secret section. This was true of the Theosophical Society and it true of a number of esoteric schools today.
91. When it comes to the esoteric schools of the future, the advanced schools will be those which house an esoteric and secret section.
92. There is an implication here that those associated with an esoteric or secret section will be initiates or, at least, treading the Path of Initiation. One begins to treat the Path of Initiation before the first planetary initiation, but the intensity of one’s initiate status changes at the second degree which marks the beginning of an entirely new section of that Path.
but what I seek to point out is that the mysteries will eventually be admitted as facts for universal recognition and for universal aim and goal.
93. DK is speaking of nothing less than the popularization of the fact that the Path of Initiation exists and that human beings may and should prepare themselves for entry into the Mysteries.
94. It is up to us to popularize the idea and do so in a sane and responsible manner. This is part of the “spiritual propaganda” effort which is of such importance leading up to the year 2025 when the “Period of the Forerunner” comes to a close.
95. Setting a good example for others to follow is one of the best means leading to a wider recognition of the reality of the Path.
They will be prepared for and entered from schools that definitely undertake, under expert guidance, to train novitiates for the mysteries.
96. We are being told that the new esoteric schools are definitely schools which prepare their students to enter the Mysteries. The Mysteries are, in fact, the Mysteries of Initiation.
97. One can begin to sense the tremendous responsibility involved in preparing the way of the new schools. This responsibility will only intensify when the schools actually become training grounds for entry into the Mysteries.
Such schools have existed before and in the turning of the wheel again they will be in manifestation.
98. Of which cycle are we speaking when referring to the “turning of the wheel”? A large cycle to be sure.
99. Schools of the Mysteries have existed in Atlantean Times, but it is well to remember that the Aryan Race has been extant for over a millions years; perhaps its faint beginning originated two or three millions years ago. During the vast period which separates us from the origin of the fifth root race, schools of the Mysteries have emerged and fulfilled their function.
100. It would seem that before long (relatively speaking) humanity on a large scale will be in a position to benefit from the emergence of the new esoteric schools. This has never been the case. At least we may expect a far wider participation of humanity in the new esoteric school process than has ever before been possible. A much wider public recognition and support of these schools may soon be a reality—so it is anticipated.
101. This does not mean that the masses of humanity will understand or appreciate the nature of these schools. There will be many, we are told, who will not recognize the Christ when He comes. But there will be a significant number of more highly cultivated people for whom these schools and what they promise will be a definite reality. Our efforts to spread the concept of these schools among intelligent men and women of goodwill will lead to their relatively broad acceptance.
You ask, when? That depends on humanity itself and on all of you who work with faith and aspiration at the beginnings of the plan.
102. Here we have a declarative statement. The emergence of the true future “Schools of Meditation” is not something that will simply happen on its own. We, humanity, have to prepare for this emergence—and prepare now.
103. We know somewhat the meaning of the “beginnings of the plan” and it is our task to work (“with faith and aspiration”) to ensure that those beginnings unfold.
104. We are to work now. The work we do now will condition the date of emergence for the true and future, new esoteric schools.
H. P. B. laid the foundation stone of the first school in this particular lesser cycle (which is nevertheless a relatively important one, being an outgrowth of the fifth root-race, the efflorescence of the fifth principle). This is the keystone.
105. In one way we may consider this school the.
106. In another way, the entire work of HPB may be considered the keystone.
107. We are still working largely within the fifth subrace of the fifth root race. Our focus, as well, lies within the fifth branch-race of the fifth subrace.
108. The efflorescence of the fifth principle is expected during the next five hundred years.
Synthesis. We have seen that during the coming races and subraces certain very definite development may be looked for in connection with manasic unfoldment; and it is worth while to note particularly that as far as the evolution of manas in this round is concerned its highest efflorescence may be looked for during the next five hundred years. (TCF 498)
109. The power of manas is very important in these new efforts. The concrete mind must not be dominant but it must be well-stocked and well trained.
The work proceeds in the founding, as aforesaid, of the various schools, and mental science also has its place.
110. DK is still speaking of the schools which precede the true, new schools of occultism.
It will go forward as desired if each one who is now under occult training strains every nerve and bends every effort to the work in hand.
111. This statement is further confirmation that at least some of the work to be done in connection with the new schools is to be undertaken now.
112. Of course the “work in hand” may be also considered more broadly. The work of occult training (as it now exists) is to be pursued with utmost vigor.
113. DK’s call to labor is rather uncompromising: we are to “strain every nerve” and “bend…every effort”. This is hardly the note of the often permissive “New Age”.
114. If we reflect honestly, can it be said that we are fulfilling these two requirements?
If all that is possible is done, when the Great Lord comes with His Masters the work will receive a still further impetus, and will gradually expand and grow till it becomes a power in the world.
115. So much preparatory work is to be done now, and this work will be further impulsed with the coming of the Great Lord and His Masters.
116. Such occult work cannot yet become “a power in the world”; a more immediate and quite direct hierarchical ‘touch’ will be required before that is possible.
Then will come the day of the occult schools that will definitely train men for initiation.
117. Before that time there will, indeed, be “occult schools”, but they will not “definitely train men for initiation”. As a result of their efforts some men may become trained for initiation, but it will not be because the schools which pre-exist the true schools of occultism are organized specifically for the purpose of this training.
We must today take up our first point for it is only as we lay the foundation aright that the superstructure measures up to requirements.
118. DK is carefully building the foundation for correct work in relation to preparation for the advent of the new esoteric schools.
1. The one fundamental School.
It is therefore very essential that the emphasis is laid on the fact that no matter what the offshoots, the basic school of occultism is that one which has its root in the sacred centre of the planet, Shamballa.
119. This is a profoundly important statement. Unless we were otherwise instructed, we might tend to think that Hierarchy, per se, would be responsible for occult education upon our planet, but that which is to be conveyed is the “Light of Life” of which Shamballa is the Repository.
120. We also remember that the true “occultist” is found upon the first ray of which Shamballa is the foremost expression on our planet.
At that place, directly under the eyes of the One Initiator Himself, Who is—as is seldom realised—the highest expression of the Teaching Ray upon the earth, is found what might be termed the central office for the educational disciplinary training work of the Hierarchy.
121. Sanat Kumara is not entirely a Being upon the first ray. His role as “The Great Sacrifice” and as “the highest expression of the Teaching Ray upon the earth” connects Him directly with the second ray.
122. We remember that Sanat Kumara is a direct Disciple of the Solar Logos, and that the Solar Logos is primarily upon the second ray, the teaching ray. Certainly the Solar Logos is the major source of illumination within the solar system—physically, mentally and spiritually.
Let us observe how the work undertaken under the inspiration of
Shamballa is described: it is “educational disciplinary training work”. It is
not simply the world of education as
education is usually understood. With this type of education come a strenuous
application of the will and also the
training work of the seventh ray. Immediately apparent is the idea that
whatever is learned must be applied. The power of Saturn is very
evident in the kind of education which emanates from the
124. Although Shamballa is the central inspiration for this work, we note that the work is undertaken by the Hierarchy. Of course, we can, in the larger sense, consider both Shamballa and Hierarchy as included in that which we usually call “the Spiritual Hierarchy of our planet”.
125. Incidentally, we note that the One Initiator has “eyes”. This may be both a metaphorical and literal statement.
There will be found the Chohan Who is directly responsible for the various endeavours, and to Whom the Masters Who take pupils, and the Heads of the various occult schools are directly responsible. All proceeds under law and order.
126. We may suppose that this Chohan is Master Morya Who is the “head of all esoteric schools in the world at this time”.
127. This is so because that which true esoteric schools attempt to convey is closely associated with the mystery of will.
128. It is also suggested that there are some Masters who do not take pupils.
The type of education emanating from the
One point that it will here be necessary to emphasise is that the Brotherhood of Light, as represented by the Himalayan Masters, has its other representatives elsewhere who all carry out specific work under proper and adequate supervision.
130. DK is presenting a thought akin to the thought of the Christ when He said: “Other sheep have I, which are not of this fold”.
Too apt are the Theosophists to think that they alone are the repositories of the wisdom religion. Not so is the fact.
131. We are to widen our point of view. Of course, since the time this instruction was given, the Tibetan’s statement has certainly been confirmed in the eyes of most serious thinkers in the field of esotericism.
At this particular moment (with the aim in view of the development and tendering of opportunity to the fifth subrace) the Himalayan Brotherhood is the main channel of effort, power and light.
132. It would seem that the Himalayan Brotherhood is specifically connected with the fifth root race. It is important to realize this in relation to present efforts. We must balance this realization by the realization that the sixth root race (preceded by the sixth subrace of the fifth root race) is rapidly taking shape.
But the work with other races proceeds simultaneously and numerous other projects, all emanating from the central office at Shamballa, are paralleling the Himalayan work.
133. The term “central office at Shamballa” suggests a center for organizing the work. We are to realize that organization is one of the principal qualities emanating from Shamballa along with purification and destruction.
Get this clearly in mind, for the point is
134. This is an uncompromising statement. It is especially important that we (who are students in the West) grasp the main point as modern communications networks have made available to us so many diverse streams of teaching.
When we study AAB and Theosophy, we are studying directly in line
136. DK is telling us that we must conform to the requirements of this School or Lodge and follow its procedures.
It brooks no rival nor contemporary work with its pupils, not for the [Page 303] sake of its own teachers but to ensure the safety of its pupils.
137. DK drives the point home. The approach is uncompromising.
138. He is clear that the proscription is not for the sake of the teachers but for the safety of the students.
139. The word “contemporary” as used here means simultaneous. If one is working with the Himalayan Lodge one cannot be simultaneously working with another stream of the Teaching.
Danger lurks in the path of the occult student and the Himalayan adepts know adequately how to protect their pupils, provided those pupils stay within the periphery of Their united auras, and wander not out to other schools.
140. We see that it is, indeed, possible to wander outside the sphere of protection, and this with all good intentions.
DK is not speaking of the aura of one particular Master but of the “united
auras” of those Masters Who are representatives of the
142. We may wonder concerning the relationship of other Masters (representing other Traditions) to the hierarchical structure as we have been given to understand it.
All true occult schools demand this of their pupils, and all true Masters expect Their pupils to refrain from taking other occult instructions at the same time as they are receiving it from Them. They say not: "Our method is the only right and true method." They say: "When receiving instructions from Us it is the part of wisdom and the line of safety to refrain from occult training in another school or under another Master."
143. Master Morya speaks of the danger of crosscurrents. The empowering energies set to the same chela by different Masters could interfere with each other and, thus, endanger that student who (in attempting to serve more than one Master) would simultaneously receive diverse and potentially conflicting energies. The results, Master Morya tells us, could be catastrophic.
144. Other dangers are less dire—confusion of methods and, hence, non-accomplishment or delay.
Should a pupil desire so to do he is perfectly free to seek out other schools and teachers, but he must first break his connection with the old.
145. The principle of free will is never violated, but the student must be honest in his approach.
146. Often the motive for pursuing two different lines of esoteric training simultaneously is spiritual acquisitiveness or ambition.
147. When a student wishes to receive practical occult instruction from more than one teacher at a time, that student should question his motives. As for a theoretical or academic approach, there is no real danger. It is frequently of value to learn about the many esoteric traditions and their relationships.
The one fundamental school may be recognised by certain outstanding characteristics:—
148. If we are to adhere to the foundational teaching we must learn to recognize it.
By the basic character of the truths taught as embodied in the following postulates:—
a. The unity of all life.
149. This postulate is one of the greatest of spiritual platitudes found in the kind of esoteric teaching with which we are most familiar. DK calls it “so customary and trite an unrealised truth” (R&I 124)
b. The graded steps of development as recognised in man, and by the graded steps of its curriculum, which lead a man from one expansion of consciousness to another until he has reached that which we call perfection.
150. A progress in spiritual occultism is both graded and gradual.
c. The relationship between the microcosm and the macrocosm and its sevenfold application.
151. In Trans-Himalayan Occultism one will never escape an emphasis upon septenates.
d. The method of this development and the place of the microcosm within the macrocosm as revealed through the study of the periodicity of all manifestation and the basic law of cause and effect.
152. A study of the Law of Periodicity and the Law of Karma go hand in hand. All karmic processes work out through the agency of periodical incarnations.
By the emphasis laid on character building and spiritual development as a foundation for the development of [Page 304] all the faculties inherent in the microcosm.
153. Spiritual occultism is not to be undertaken by those whose lunar lords are still out of control.
By the requirement, demanded of all affiliated pupils without exception, that the life of inner unfoldment and development should be paralleled by a life of exoteric service.
154. Service to humanity is a requirement which is indispensable. This approach eventually ensures that one’s approach to occultism is not tainted by selfishness.
By the graded expansions of consciousness that are the result of the imparted training; these lead a man on from step to step till he contacts his higher self, his Master, his egoic group, the First Initiator, the One Paramount Initiator, until he has contacted the Lord of his Ray and has entered into the bosom of his "Father Which is in Heaven".
155. Here is described the process of initiation so characteristic of the Teaching of the Himalayan Lodge.
156. It is important to note the sequence of expansions:
a. Contact with the higher self
b. Contact with the Master
c. Contact with one’s egoic group
d. Contact with the First Initiator
Contact with the One
157. We note that Sanat Kumara is called here by the unusual name the “One Paramount Initiator” and the Christ by the term, the “First Initiator”.
a. The Lord of one’s Ray may be considered, minimally, a Shamballic Being Who works in closest consultation with the Lord of the World. The Lord of one’s Ray may, more broadly, be considered a Heavenly Man or Planetary Logos expressive of a particular Ray.
158. Let us tabulate the postulates just given for the sake of clarity:
a. The postulate positing the unity of all life
b. The postulate that progress through graded steps of development
c. The postulate that the microcosm and macrocosm are intimately interrelated and that the relationship is based primarily upon the principle of the septenate.
d. The postulate that there is a Law of Periodicity and a Law of Karma, both of which are intimately related to spiritual development. Occult development further involves:
i. Character building and spiritual development before inherent powers are unfolded
ii. A life of exoteric service to humanity which parallels interior spiritual development
iii. The system of progressive initiation leading to various graded expansions of consciousness
These are the outstanding features that are descriptive of the one true fundamental School.
This fundamental school has three main branches and a fourth that is in process of forming and which will make the four branches of this fourth round. These branches are as follows:—
1. The trans-Himalayan Branch.
159. This is the Branch to which our allegiance (as students in the West) is due.
2. The southern India Branch. (these are Aryan Branches)
160. The entire fifth root race is usually called the “Aryan Race” and so it is, perhaps, unusual to note that the term “Aryan” is reserved for the “southern India Branch”.
161. The Himalayan Branch also works with students who are members of the fifth root race.
162. We note the word “Branches” (plural), indicating the divisions within the “southern India Branch”.
3. A Branch that works with the fourth root-race and has two fourth root-race adepts at its head.
Of this Branch we are told little except that the schools to be
164. Regarding the two “fourth root-race adepts”—one is upon the Ray of Power and the other upon the Teaching Ray.
4. A Branch in process of forming that will have its headquarters in the Occident at some place not yet disclosed.
We may infer that this place will be somewhere in
It has for its main object the instructing of those connected with the coming sixth root-race.
166. The sixth root race (to be established in the relatively near future) will last some ten million years, we are told.
167. May we anticipate that steps towards the founding of this fourth Branch will take place during the emergence of the sixth sub-ray of the fifth root race?
These branches are and will be closely inter-allied and will work in the closest co-operation, being all focused and under the control of the Chohan at Shamballa. The heads of each of the four branches communicate with each other frequently and are really like the faculty of one stupendous university, the four schools being like the [Page 305] various major departments of the foundations—like subsidiary colleges.
168. The ideal is here given. We are to learn to work as the Masters now work.
Master Morya (if our hypothesis is correct) will be the Chohan
controlling the process. We are well aware that the Himalayan Adepts are
related to Him as are the Adepts concerned with the founding of the Fourth
Branch. The implication is that the two Adepts Who are responsible for the
second and third Branches are also closely connected to Him. We do remember the
great influence wielded in
170. The thought of “one stupendous university” is inspiring and sets the archetype for all university life developed by the human race.
The aim of all is the evolution of the race, the object of all is to lead all to the point of standing before the One Initiator, the methods employed are fundamentally the same, though varying in detail, due to the racial characteristics of the races and types dealt with, and the fact that certain schools work paramountly with one ray and others with another.
171. Each of the four Branches is fundamentally concerned with the evolution of the human race and with preparing their students for initiation.
172. We can well understand why there must be a diversity of approaches; racial types vary greatly as do the nations and civilizations with which they are most closely associated. Ray differences also come into play. We recall that the various schools are largely and practically ray schools. Probably all seven rays will necessarily be represented within each of the schools and yet one ray will have prominence.
173. When it comes to apportioning the rays among the schools proposed, the matter is not entirely easy and assignment must remain speculative.
174. It may also be wondered whether a particular ray is shared by the pairs of related preparatory and advanced schools. The implications to this question are important.
The trans-Himalayan school has its adepts as known to you, and others Whose Names are not known.
Even within the
176. When a Master releases His Name to the public, it is done at great cost (we are told) and, one would imagine, inconvenience.
The southern Indian school has special work with the deva evolution, and with the second and third sub-races of the Aryan race.
The Himalayan school works with the first, fourth and fifth sub-races.
177. This sub-race focus of the these two schools is interesting. Work with the deva evolution is the specific province of the Southern Indian School serving the second and third sub-races. This is particularly interesting when we realize that the third and second rays are those which are most correlated with the deva kingdom.
178. What may be the “special work with the deva evolution” we do not know. To a degree, all advancing disciples are (during the New Age) intended to achieve a closer contact with the deva kingdom. The kind of interplay taught by the Southern Indian Branch must be particular.
There is an interesting implication to the idea that the southern
Indian school works the second and third subraces of the fifth root race. It
means that many of those who currently live in
180. Of course this school will serve those in many other countries, including the Persian and Arabic groupings.
The fourth root-race branch works
under the Manu of that race and his brother of the Teaching Ray. Their headquarters are in
181. We realize that Manus of two root races are now functioning on Earth.
The Manu of the fourth root race and His brother on the Teaching
Ray are the two “adepts” mentioned earlier in the text as guiding the fourth
rootrace Branch of the
These instructions were written in 1920.
184. We note that the first and second rays work in closest cooperation. In this respect we think of Masters Morya and Koot-Hoomi Who will, respectively, serve as the future Manu and future Bodhisattva, probably following the Age of Aquarius.
185. Will the sixth root race have begun by the time the Age of Aquarius is concluded? Perhaps, for the Christ’s term of office lasts no longer than the end of that Age and Master KH (Who will be the Bodhisattva of the sixth root race succeeds the Christ in that office).
186. We cannot say Master M. and KH will form an indissoluble unit during the sixth root race because the term of a Manu is so much longer than the term of a Bodhisattva (which is usually, we are told, only 2500 years).
The Master R.— and one of the English Masters are concerning Themselves with the gradual founding of the fourth branch of the school, with the assistance of the Master Hilarion. Ponder on these imparted facts, for the significance is of profound importance.
187. Here we have a triangle of Masters Who will be responsible for work in relation to the Fourth Branch.
188. The monadic and soul rays of Master R. are proposed as three and seven, respectively. Those of Master H. as one and five respectively. We might imagine that the second ray would have to enter the equation and will perhaps do so through the English Master. A few English Masters are mentioned in the books, and they are upon either the second or the third ray.
Even though the work of these three Masters relates to occult
education during the sixth root race, we may suppose that They are,
nevertheless, closely related to the founding of the intended European esoteric
We remember that the location of the school for the sixth root race
is not specified, but it is not too much of a stretch to imagine that that
location would have to be Europe or America (since America along with Australia
and New Zealand) is closely associated with the development of the sixth root
race. However, the Masters concerned (R., H., and an English Master are all of
particularly associated with Europe—although Master R. is also the Regent of
Tomorrow we will deal with the future. Today I have but imparted facts in present manifestation.
191. The correct development of future possibilities is based upon proper developments in the present. As students interested in the development of the new esoteric schools, we are concerned mostly with the correct development of present possibilities. Thus we are laying the foundation for that which the Masters hope to see materialize eventually.
Today our second point comes up for consideration, and we shall in the elucidation of it enter into the realms of prophecy. I would here point out to you that the thing which is indicated as existing in the future may not always work out in detail as foreseen. I but seek to lay before you the big general plan in its outline.
192. This is a point not to be forgotten. Prophecy has its definite value but must not be approached rigidly. There are too many variables. Guidelines have been given to us and we may, with profit, follow them, ever alert to possible changes in the detail of eventual manifestation.
The working out in the future will depend upon the intuition or high [Page 306] perception of the thinkers of the race and upon the ability of the incarnating jivas to seize upon the opportunities and fulfil their destiny.
193. Let us tabulate those factors upon which a future outworking depends:
a. The intuition of the thinkers of the race
b. The high perception of the thinkers of the race
c. The ability of the incarnating jivas to seize upon opportunities
d. The ability of the incarnating jivas to fulfill their destiny
194. We have gathered that that which DK foresees is considered ideal. How closely humanity can approximate the ideal remains to be seen.
195. The project is (on a human scale) vast. Many centuries will be required to see its complete fulfillment and who can foretell how it shall develop during subsequent precessional ages.
We touched yesterday upon the one fundamental school with its four branches. Today I would take up:—
2. The National subdivisions of the one school.
At the outset I would point out to you that not every nation in the world will have its occult school.
196. It may be possible, however, as concepts surrounding the nature of spiritual education advance and understanding of spiritual occultism grows, for various nations (unlisted among the nations intended to develop the future “Schools of Meditation”) to have at least their own esoterically-tending schools, even if these schools are not the hierarchically supervised future schools of occultism.
Only as the causal body of the national group has reached a certain rate of vibration will it be possible to found and institute these schools.
197. If there is a parallel between the unfoldment of the individual and national causal body, then some unfoldment of the sacrifice petals of the egoic lotus would be required. If a nation does not understand the value of purposeful sacrifice (the quality associated with the third tier of petals) we may infer that it will not yet be ripe for the appearance of a true school of occultism.
198. The technicalities concerning the rate of vibration of the individual or national causal body are, of course, among the secrets of initiation.
199. In practical language, only a nation possessed of many causally-stored virtues and capacities will be suitable for the development and sustainment of the kinds of occult schools we are discussing.
Only as the educational work of the nation has reached a certain height will it be possible to use the mental equipment of the nation as a stepping stone for further expansion, and to use it as a basis for the occult school.
200. We can see that only in those nations where modern education is widely-spread and of sufficient quality (and apparently not in all of them) will the emergence of a true occult school be possible.
201. The cultivation of the concrete mind is definitely a stepping stone for occult training. It is the over-cultivation of the concrete mind that presents a danger.
DK has cited
And, curiously enough, only those nations which originally had a training school for the mysteries (with three exceptions) will be again, during the earlier stages, permitted national schools. The exceptions are:—
203. We might question the meaning of the phrase “during the earlier stages”. Does this mean that in later stages, and as humanity progresses, nations other than those mentioned in this instruction will be permitted to have occult schools?
204. It is clear that Master DK is laying out for us only a kind of relatively imminent development of occult education. Many precessional ages lie ahead, and we cannot imagine that the presence of such schools will die out. Probably they will take forms which either cannot be foreseen or which it is not profitable to discuss at this time. Thus, all that He is now saying relates to what He calls “the earlier stages”.
And even these exceptions might be
considered only one, the case of
Significant facts emerge. Both
207. Additionally, the other locations where the new esoteric schools are to be founded are not mentioned in relation to Atlantis, and so, if may be presumed that they had occult schools during the Aryan Period (a span covering minimally a million years or so and possibly up to four million, if the Aryan Race is considered to have begun before the Atlantean Race had completely run its course).
To think of
209. Another fact is suggested—namely that schools of initiation did, indeed, exist in Atlantean days. We will not be speaking of early Atlantis which may have overlapped Lemurian times, but of a later Atlantean period. Indeed, we are told that the door of initiation was opened during Atlantean times.
3. In Atlantis, the door of initiation opened, and forced initiation became the objective of the best of the human family. Those who could or can thus become initiate are the "lights which ever radiate." In Lemurian days it was the "lights which ever burn" that came into being. (EP II 209)
In the turning of the wheel, earth itself reincarnates;
210. We are speaking of the various incarnations of the Planetary Logos of the Earth-scheme. The vehicle called the Earth-globe does not disappear between such incarnations; rather the principal focus of the Planetary Logos ‘moves’ from one point to another.
places pass into pralaya and emerge into manifestation,
211. We see that the cycles of emergence, flourishing and abstraction refer to places on the Earth as well as to globes, chains and schemes.
holding within them the seeds that will eventuate in similar vibration, and bring into being again similar modes of expression, and similar forms.
212. Seeds hold the key to the form and quality which developed in the past. Seeds are stored over time. From seeds, newly sprouting, emerge that which was stored in the seed—the harvest of a previous cycle.
213. DK seems to be telling us that in a number of the “places” slated to support a new esoteric school, vibrations similar to past vibrations will emerge and perhaps forms similar to ancient forms will also emerge—at least initially.
It will be found later on, when the Occult Schools are founded, that they will be situated where some of the old magnetism yet lingers, and where in some cases certain [Page 307] old talismans have been kept by the Brotherhood with just this aim in view.
214. Such talismans have not been planted in all places in which new occult schools are to emerge—only in some, and which ones are not specified. Such knowledge will emerge as new school development progresses.
215. On the other hand, some modern, spiritually-inclined people are quite good at detecting the magnetic quality of various “sacred sites”. Perhaps, some of those whose task it is to found new esoteric schools will be endowed with sensitivity to such old, lingering magnetism.
Branches, affiliated with one of the four central divisions of the one occult foundation, will be found in the following countries:
216. We note that even though the Fourth Branch of the One Fundamental School of Occultism in Shamballa is only in process of formation (because the sixth root race is only faintly in process of emergence), schools which may eventually be associated with it are included.
These schools will, as we have suggested, be found in Europe or
218. The “inner grades” suggest the ranks within the Spiritual Hierarchy of our Planet.
The rays reasonably associated with
220. It has been suggested by the occult historian Phillip Lindsay that the second root race was largely Egyptian in character (or at least that the ancient Egyptians were offshoots of the original members of the second root race of the Aryan root race).
221. One would suspect that the future Egyptian school will have a powerfully first ray coloring.
In order to determine the extent to which this asymmetry may
prevail, we would have to ascertain whether the pairs of preparatory and
advanced schools would both be ruled
by the same ray.
224. When one thinks of the United States one can easily conceive of the sixth ray (its personality ray) This would be especially so in relation to the preparatory school in the southern part of the Middle West, which even now is strongly characterized by the sixth ray.
When one thinks of
We note the particular way in which the advanced school in
227. When we study the nature of the advanced schools we see that they are small and supervised by only a triangle of ‘teachers’ who, really, are more advisers and inner workers than teachers.
How, then, does the idea of such a small student body and teaching
staff correlate with the thought of “an extensive occult college”? When we
consider the power of the Internet (even as presently constituted) we may
imagine ways in which the
This school will be one of the first started when the Great Lord begins His earthly career,
230. The Great Lord is the Christ. What is His “earthly career”? Is it marked by His physical plane emergence? Probably so. The words “earthly career”, however, might also refer to His work upon the etheric plane, which, in a way, has already begun.
231. We should note that we are speaking of an advanced school and, yet, it is to be “one of the first started”. Given the spiritually progressive nature of Californian culture, this seems more than possible.
232. We gather (when comparing certain of the pairs of schools—preparatory and advanced) that in some cases the emergence of the advanced school will occur almost simultaneously with the emergence of its preparatory school. In other cases the emergence of the advanced school will be significantly separated from the emergence of the preparatory school.
233. It should be borne in mind that when these instructions were written, it was anticipated that the Great Lord would probably emerge into physical manifestation before the end of the twentieth century. The discovery of atomic energy and its application to weapons of war may have necessitated a change in these plans.
Certain facts concerning these Masters, and Their work in the present and in the future, may be in place here. First, the work of training Their pupils and disciples to fit them to be of use in two great events, one, the [Page 61] coming of the World Teacher towards the middle or close of this present century, and the other, the training of them to be of use in the founding of the new sixth sub-race and in the reconstruction of the present world conditions. (IHS 60-61)
and during the next five years the seeds of it may be laid if students rightly apprehend the work to be done.
Let us attempt to get our chronology straight. The instruction is
given during the last third of 1920. The First World War had just ended. The
Second World War was not strongly anticipated—by humanity at least. DK is
enjoining students of these instructions to rightly apprehend the work to be
done to that they may plant the seeds for the new
235. From all appearances, it would seem that much that was intended has been delayed.
236. Now it is some ninety years after the instructions were written. Can we begin to lay the seeds for the emergence of the new esoteric schools at this time? Although humanity (and our planet) faces many dire problems, it would seem that we can do so—slowly, cautiously and in all humility.
3. There will be one school for the Latin countries, probably in Italy or Southern France, but much depends on the political and educational work of the next ten years.
We may expect that the schools here mentioned may express the third
ray (and, in the case of
Later in the text we are told of an advanced school in
The list of fourteen schools shows a school for both Southern France and
Since the advanced school to be founded in
Much, as He said, would be dependent on political and educational
work undertaken during the next ten years—i.e., in this context 1920-1930. We
Here again we have a choice of two possible locations. The other
choice of two is between
244. Another possible ray-design for preparatory and advanced schools would see the preparatory schools expressing the Rays of Attribute and the advanced schools the Rays of Aspect. This could be a convincing solution in some cases but not in others.
From DK’s mention of “magnetized spots” we might infer that
After it has been in existence for a few years and has proved the effectiveness of its training,
246. This is one of those instances in which the advanced school is intended to follow the preparatory school in relatively short order. The requirement is, after all, that the preparatory school be in existence “for a few years”. What may be a “few”? Seemingly under ten, but who can judge how the Masters judge time?
Yet there is the caveat that the preparatory school in
248. We find that Master DK is very careful about the manner in which He speaks of time. He does not wish to become too concrete lest rigidity enter into the thinking of those who undertake the preparation of these schools.
and after troubled
What is needed in relation to
We do notice that “troubled
a school for the more
advanced grades, and for definite preparation for the mysteries will be started
Not only is there magnetisation in
The term “magnetism” seems
especially related to the two-four-six line of force. DK associates magnetism
with the astral rather than etheric body. One thinks in this regard of the
The school started in
255. We see, however, that “definite preparation for the mysteries” (presumably, the Mysteries of Initiation) will be taught.
This school will be very definitely a school where preparation for a major initiation may be taken, and will be under the eye of the Bodhisattva, preparing the pupil for initiation upon the second ray.
256. When DK speaks of major initiations, He usually means the third, fourth or fifth.
Given the ray quality of
Whereas other schools might be under the supervision of this Master
or that, the advanced school is
259. When it comes to ray emphasis, the emphasis of the Irish advanced school is definitely a second ray emphasis.
The first school in
This statement is of interest as there will undoubtedly be those in
the Orient as well who take initiation on the first ray line. May it be that
the school in first ray
We note that the school in
262. When we study the list of schools on LOM 308 (immediately ahead) we could wonder whether the order in which the schools are listed expresses their ray emphasis. This may be so in some cases, but hardly seems likely in others.
264. At some point China and Japan must be inserted, but the rays of these two countries are far from similar (China, the first ray soul and third ray personality, and Japan the fourth ray soul and sixth ray personality).
265. The exact ray emphasis of each school is not easy to determine and no particular pattern of presentation in the instructions seems to elucidate it entirely—though hints are to be discerned.
Those who take initiation on the
line of the Mahachohan, or on the third ray, will take it at the advanced
occult school in
266. The Master R. is now the Mahachohan, though at the time these instructions were written He may not have been. In any case His monadic ray is almost certainly the third and hence the ray most associated with the Mahachohan is the third.
One thinks however of certain Renaissance scholars and
mathematicians who expressed in
Some traditions concerning the upbringing of Master R. (born, so we
told, to the Hungarian Rakoczi, family) say that he was sent to
270. In Italian Renaissance days, when the Medici truly flourished, they were said to have sponsored intensive educational processes in which Hermetic Occultism was studied by the brilliant minds there gathered—and protected by the power of the Medici.
In this way the Occident will have its centre where active instruction may be given according to the three lines of approach, and which will give preparation in the inner mysteries.
271. Three ray methods of instruction are given for the Occident:
272. What of second and third ray instruction in the Orient? This is not clearly suggested.
273. The “inner mysteries” are mysteries as they begin with the third initiation. We may then consider the ‘outer mysteries’ to relate to the probationary initiations—the first and second initiation.
274. Perhaps the these premier advanced schools will offer preparation for the third initiation (and, we cannot be sure, even the fourth, as was suggested in relation to the school which the Bodhisattva supervises).
275. Could it be that the other four advanced schools could be involved in offering preparation for the second degree, as well as the third degree? There is some ambiguity concerning whether preparation for the second degree will be the province of advanced schools or preparatory schools.
5. A preparatory occult school will be found, too, in Sweden, for those of the northern and German races who seek the Path, and when it has been extant for some time Russia may then be in a position to house the headquarters for the more advanced school affiliated to the preparatory one in Sweden.
We notice an important difference concerning the time interval
between the Swedish and Russian school and the interval between the
Scotland/Wales and Irish schools. In the latter case, the preparatory school
must only have been in successful expression for a “few years”, whereas the
Swedish school must have been “extant for some time” before
There is much of the seventh ray in the Scandinavian countries and
those in which Germanic languages are spoken. Further the mental vehicle of
these people tends towards the fifth ray. In addition the soul ray of
In connection with the Egyptian advanced
school will be a preparatory one in
We know that there will be much first ray demonstrating through the
Egyptian advanced school. It would be hard to conceive of a Greek school
demonstrating the first ray but perhaps this could be so for
280. We recall that we do not know whether the pairs of schools are also paired in relation to the rays they principally are to demonstrate. It would seem likely and almost necessary, but it is not certain. Further, the idea of complementary rays should be taken into consideration. It is possible that the paired schools could function on complementary rays—the advanced school on a Ray of Aspect and its paired preparatory school on a complementary Ray of Attribute.
You have, therefore, the following schools as planned, and must bear in mind that the schools wherein the preparatory work and earlier grades are found will be first in order of time,
281. Although the preparatory schools will be first founded before the advanced schools, we have already seen that in some cases their founding will be close to simultaneous—i.e., separated by only a few years.
282. Interestingly, in relation to the schools to be found in the United States, the advanced and extensive occult college” to be founded in California is mentioned as one of the first schools to emerge when the Great Lord begins his earthly career, but the time of emergence of the preparatory school in the Middle West of the United States is not given. The ‘feel’ of the matter would suggest that their founding will also be very close in time. Could their founding even be simultaneous?
and are in process of founding now, or will be founded during the period immediately preceding the Coming of the Great Lord.
283. This is a most important statement concerning the preparatory schools. The instructions were written in 1920 and yet we are told that some of the preparatory schools “are in process of founding now”. The founding of yet other schools does not have to wait until the Great Lord actually “comes”, but will occult in the period immediately preceding His Coming.
284. We, therefore, have four time periods mentioned in various portions of these instructions:
b. “The period immediately preceding the Coming of the Great Lord”
c. The period concurrent with the Coming of the Great Lord.
d. The period following the Coming of the Great Lord.
285. We remember that His Coming was expected as early as the middle of the 20th century, or perhaps a bit later, towards the close the century.
Given that the
287. We can also be assured that if some of the new preparatory schools were “in process of founding now” (written 1920) they certainly can be considered “in process of founding now”—some ninety years after the instruction was written.
288. If this is not the case, then the changes in hierarchical planning during and following WWII must have been drastic indeed.
289. If in 2025 “the date in all probability will be set for the first stage of the externalisation of the Hierarchy” (EXH 530), we are in a stage immediately preceding that determination. This takes us (we could argue) to a similar point in relation to the initial states of the externalisation of the Hierarchy as the year 1920 stood in relation to the earlier plans of the externalisation of the Hierarchy (and externalization which, from all appearances, was scheduled for the 20th century).
290. In any case, we may judge it wise to proceed “as if” at least some of the preparatory schools “are in process of founding now”.
291. This means that although the entiretous fulfillment of the dharma of these schools will have to await the presence in physical incarnation of the Masters of the Wisdom (and especially of those associated with the schools), a beginning can now definitely be made.
The founding of others will be definitely the outcome of His work, and that of His Masters, and will depend upon Their decision as to the success of the earlier endeavour.
292. By “the founding of others” is probably meant the founding of the advanced schools, as least certain ones of them—such as the Egyptian and Irish schools. We can see that the founding of the advanced schools (in general) is much dependent upon the presence of the Great Lord and His Masters.
293. An “earlier endeavor” must however occur, and in relation to that endeavor, members of the present day esoteric community can certainly be involved.
294. Given the list below, some hypothetical ray proposals may be made:
a. The pairs cannot easily be shown to express the same ray.
b. Further, in this fourth round, it may be that not all rays are in full expression.
c. The ray proposals given will suggest movement from a Ray of Attribute for the preparatory school to a Ray of Aspect (in most cases) for the advanced school.
Preparatory Grades Advanced School
295. From the fourth ray to the first. Or from the third ray to the first.
296. From the sixth ray to the second
3. Southern France
297. From the fifth ray to the third
298. From the fourth ray to the second
From the seventh ray to the seventh. This would be an exception,
but considering the importance of the seventh ray during the coming Aquarian
Age and the soul ray of
300. From the seventh ray and second rays to the second.
301. Rays of Aspect may also be found expressing through some preparatory schools. No hard and fast rule may be laid down.
302. While we cannot yet ascertain which rays will express through which schools, we can gather some ideas as points of departure.
There is also planned a preparatory school for the advanced egos of the fourth root-race.
303. No one can think of entering either a preparatory or advanced school unless such an individual is, technically, an “advanced ego”.
304. One becomes an “advanced ego” in the period preceding the first planetary initiation.
This will be under the Manu of that race and
will be situated in
Did Master DK foresee that
It is not easy to assign rays to this fourth-rootrace school, but a
movement from the fourth ray of
We note that whereas the European and fourth-rootrace Branches of
the One Fundamental School of Occultism in Shamballa are included in the
enumeration, there are no schools given associated with the Southern Indian
School. This cannot be accidental. Time will reveal the reason for this
apparent omission. Certainly, there will be schools which convey the teaching
of this Branch of the
It is not purposed as yet to have
branches in Southern Africa or
What does DK mean by “the next cycle”? He may or may not mean the
sixth root race. The future European Branch (or American Branch—since both
Master R. and H. are associated with occult developments in
May it be that the growth for
310. Or we could defer the emergence of occult schools in these two locations until the next round? This, however, would seem unlikely, as the identity of continents and countries would likely not survive the change of rounds.
Now, I would earnestly call to your attention that the schools will make but small beginnings and will be launched in a way that will appear at first as too unimportant to be noticeable.
311. The Tibetan saves would-be founders from the glamorous error of self-importance.
312. Small beginnings are possible. Proceeding in relative quiet, they will not attract to themselves the energy of interference, and, thus, they will have a chance of success.
313. DK seems to make this statement in relation to all the schools—both preparatory and advanced.
A beginning will be made with members of the different occult schools, such as the esoteric sections of the Theosophical movement, and others.
314. Those who are members of the present occult schools will be those who will make the effort to quietly launch the new occult schools/colleges.
315. It is clear that one need not wait for the presence of a Master to inaugurate such schools.
316. Students of the AAB books (and all the various present day occult schools which presently study these books) will probably be among those who will attempt to launch these schools.
work in Britain, America and Australia is
already in process of inception, whilst that in
317. DK seems to point to ‘present day’ developments (1920!) which will contribute to the launching of at least the preparatory schools.
We notice, however, that
This is an important rebuttal to those who will say that one cannot
at this time prepare the field for
the emergence of the advanced schools. Work to prepare the field for the
advanced schools in
We have seen much Theosophical activity in all the countries listed
Presumably the schools to follow at a slightly later date (and
presumably we are speaking mostly of preparatory schools) will be the schools
323. Much we remember depends upon the quality of intuitive response and the ability to seize opportunity when presented.
This much of the plan has been permitted publication as an incentive to all of you to study with greater aspiration and to work with more strenuous application. Each and all has his place in the plan would he but qualify by doing the necessary work.
324. The Tibetan is attempting to inspire us.
325. For one thing we are to “study with greater aspiration”. For another we are to work with more strenuous application.
326. There is an important difference between simply studying and studying with aspiration. The intuition is more easily engaged if aspiration is present.
327. That which is proposed is, indeed, possible, and even, in its broad outlines, inevitable. Each of us can have his place in this inspiring plan if we will but qualify ourselves.
328. Again, the point to be gathered—we may begin to work now and should not be dissuaded by the inevitable opposition of nay-sayers.
That work should be:—
329. The work we are to undertaken is as follows:
An endeavour to recognise the Divine within each one. In this manner the true occult obedience, which is an essential in all occult training, will be fostered and developed, being not based, as is so oft seen, on personality, but on that instinctive realisation of a Master, and the willing following that comes from the recognition of His powers, the purity of His life and aims, and the profundity of His knowledge.
330. The suggestion is if that we attempt to recognise the Divine within each human being we will be led to the recognition of the Master. Recognizing the Master, we will be inclined to submit ourselves to “true occult obedience”—obedience to the soul and to that which the Master represents through His divine powers, his purity and the profundity of His knowledge.
331. The closer our contact with the Master, the more able we are to carry forward the program suggested for the founding and development of the new schools of occultism.
An endeavour to think in group terms and clearly for oneself, not depending upon the word of others for clarification.
332. We must climb the mountain of vision for ourselves. DK has asked us if we have actually done this.
333. The curricula of the new schools in both grades (but especially the advanced grades) require the student to think and act in terms of the group. The new esoteric schools are not training grounds for those still limited by individualism.
An endeavour to purify and refine all the bodies and make them more reliable servants.
334. We recall how DK told us that the concrete mind of modern man is outstripping the stabilization and development of his astral and physical bodies. Powerful spiritual energies are now descending and only vehicles of a refined nature can receive, contain and express such energies. Otherwise overstimulation and destruction of vehicular coherence will result.
335. The requirement to purify is thus of obvious value.
An endeavour to equip throughout the mental vehicle and to store within it the facts upon which extended knowledge may be based.
336. The development of the concrete mind is of great value as a basis for its extension into abstract and intuitive thinking.
337. A balanced approach to mental cultivation is needed; it must be strenuous but not excessive.
338. Let us tabulate with brevity what DK calls “the necessary work”:
a. An endeavor to recognize the Divine within each one.
b. An endeavor to think in group terms and clearly for oneself.
c. An endeavor to purify and refine the bodies
d. An endeavor to equip the mental vehicle.
339. If this work is followed, we will prepare ourselves more rapidly to participate in the founding of the new esoteric schools of the future.
If these things are done great will be the day of opportunity.
340. DK continues to elaborate what is required of us if we would participate in the founding of these schools.
341. Note below His use of the word “rigid”. It can be compared to His use of the word “strain” as in, “strain every nerve”. His is not a moderate or compromising approach to achievement.
In the rigid disciplining of yourself comes eventual perfection. To the disciple nought is too small to undertake, for in the rigid adjustment of the details of the lower world life comes, at the end, attainment of the goal.
342. The attitude required is a wilful one. The lunar lords are not allowed to control. Circumstances cannot be allowed to dictate policy. Rather, the will controls circumstances and in the most minute detail.
343. The attitude is also one of humility. When the disciple achieves the necessary “adjusted sense of right proportion”, then even relatively small endeavors are not considered insignificant simply because they are apparently small. As Master Morya has stated, the tiniest grain of sand can stop the largest wheel.
344. So our work in preparation for the schools of the future entails rigid disciplining and rigid adjustment of detail to the willed objective.
The life of the disciple becomes not easier as the Gate is neared, but ever the watch must be more thorough, ever right action must be taken with no regard to result, and ever each body in all its aggregate of detail must be wrestled with and subjugated.
345. The requirements sound strenuous. This is wholesome. Modern students of esotericism often delude themselves by thinking that it is relatively easy to tread the Path.
346. Not only are the requirements strenuous but they are exacting. No lack of adjustment can be overlooked or deemed inconsequential.
Only in the thorough comprehension of the axiom "Know thyself" will come that understanding that enables man to wield the law and know the inner working of the system from the centre to the periphery.
347. We might say that the curricula of the future schools of occultism are very much aimed at fulfilling this ancient Delphic Injunction—“Know Thyself”.
348. The preparatory schools confer microcosmic Self-knowledge. The advanced schools widen and deepen the concept of the Self. Through identification, the applicant to the portal of initiation realizes that he is the larger whole.
Struggle, strive, discipline, and rejoicingly serve with no reward save the misunderstanding and the abuse of those who follow after—this is the role of the disciple.
349. This is a fine mantram and should be memorized by all those who seek to labor on behalf of humanity and the Great Ones.
350. Such abuse seems almost inevitable. There is no use complaining about it. Those who depart from the fourth kingdom and enter the fifth must expect to be treated in this manner. “He was despised and rejected among men.”
Today we will deal with our third point.
3. The Location, personnel, and building of the occult school.
Here at the outset I would remind you that much which might be said by me on this matter must remain unsaid for lack of the ability to comprehend.
351. Rather than confuse us, the Tibetan will leave unsaid what He otherwise might say were our comprehension adequate for the correct reception of His thoughts.
I might lay down certain approximate rules, and make certain fundamental suggestions that may find their place in the [Page 311] final working out. I can lay down no rule that must be kept. Such is not the occult law.
352. Suggestions are offered but the students who will engage in the founding of the future occult schools cannot be shackled to rigid rules.
353. Occult law always respects the free will of those who are intended to follow the law.
In the establishment of these occult schools in their two divisions, preparatory and advanced, in the different designated centres under one of the four branches of the one fundamental School of Occultism, the work will begin in an inconspicuous manner, and those pupils and advanced egos whose work it is to make the necessary beginning must find out for themselves the method, place and manner.
354. This is a summary paragraph which offers an invitation.
355. Do we number ourselves among “those advanced egos whose work it is to make the necessary beginning”? Do we respond to the idea that, if we are those whose dharma it is to begin, it will be necessary for us to find out for ourselves “the method, place and manner”?
356. It is clear that much experimentation will be required even when the intuition has been contacted and the will-to-serve is adequately present.
357. It is also clear that the Masters are not the Ones who start the schools—at least not on the physical plane.
All must be wrought out in the furnace of endeavour and experiment, and the price paid will be high, but only that which is thus wrought out provides the residue or nucleus upon which the further work may be based.
358. We have been told that mistakes will be made. This is inevitable given such a large undertaking meant to span centuries in its development.
359. Sacrifice ensures the strength of that which has been prepared. DK seeks the creation of a solid nucleus upon which further work can be based.
360. The cost will be distinctive in each case and one can be assured that much that the personality holds dear will be relinquished so that the goal may be achieved.
361. Above all, let those who would seek to prepare the field realize that they are submitting themselves to a “test of time”. The proposed project will take centuries to mature. More than one life will have to be given to ensuring the correct development of the future schools of occultism.
362. Let all who would undertake this work take note of the cost.
Mistakes matter not; nought but the fleeting personalities suffer.
363. Workers in this field must work as souls. From the soul perspective, personalities are fleeting entities—instruments rather than ends in themselves.
What does matter is lack of aspiration, inability to attempt, and incapacity to learn the lesson that failure teaches.
364. We question ourselves: Are we equipped with sufficient aspiration, sufficient initiative, and with the ability to learn from our mistakes?
365. Perhaps we should focus on the phrase “inability to attempt”. We are sailing on uncharted waters. We are creating paths through the wilderness. We are attempting what many will call “impossible”. In the face of these odds, will we nevertheless make the attempt? Much of our usefulness will depend upon our answer. Further, the manifestation of that which the Masters propose will also rest upon the answer (collectively considered).
When failures are regarded as valuable lessons, when a mistake is deemed but a warning signal that averts from disaster, and when no time is ever lost by a disciple in vain despair and useless self depreciation, then the watching Teachers of the race know that the work the Ego seeks to do through each expression on the lower plane goes forward as desired, and that success must inevitably eventuate.
366. We have been given the correct way to face mistakes and failure.
367. To learn valuable lessons from failures, to heed the warnings of mistakes made, to avoid lamentations and despair over our mistakes and failures—these require a strong measure of decentralization. A self-centered personality will not respond correctly.
368. So let us attempt to see the larger picture and to stand back from our personality vicissitudes. Success will be ours if we persist intelligently, with a loving heart and a determination to follow that which the spiritual will reveals.
We will here take each detail of our subject, as enumerated above, by itself.
369. It becomes clear that Master DK expects His books to last far into the future—a time when the work for the real occult schools can be undertaken with anticipation of full success.
The Location. This is a matter of very real importance but differs according to the need of finding a situation whereon to found a preparatory or an advanced school.
370. Each school will have its own requirements and, in general, the requirements for preparatory schools differ from those of the advanced schools.
Generally speaking (for national requirements vary much), the school for the preparatory work will be situated within reasonable distance of some big centre or city, whilst the school for the advanced grades will be more isolated, and not so easily accessible.
371. In the matter of location, this is the major difference between preparatory and advanced schools.
372. The life led in the preparatory school is more recognizably “normal” than that led in the advanced school.
373. A big centre or city offers many educational and cultural possibilities which are important for the development of the kinds of students who seek spiritual development in the preparatory schools.
374. Of course—and we will return to this point—the incredibly rapid development of the telecommunications network and of the Internet (perhaps unforeseen even by Master DK in 1920) has introduced entirely new possibilities for access to all manner of information and to cultural events.
375. As we look at the requirements for each type of school, we will use the color green (third ray) for the preparatory schools and blue (second ray) for the advanced schools.
Let us look into this for a moment. One of the fundamental things that the novitiate has to learn is to find his [Page 312] centre within himself, independent of surrounding circumstances, and preferably in spite of surrounding circumstances. The centre must be found to a considerable degree before he can pass on to the more advanced grades and work in the second school.
376. The novice has to learn to find and sustain his center in the midst of relatively normal life. Premature isolation will not foster this strengthening of a sense of center.
377. Each student of occultism must find that ‘place of interior resort’ which is his soul nature. This centered attitude must be sustainable despite all manner of apparent interruptions.
The preparatory school above all things concentrates on the development of the threefold lower man, and his training in service.
378. We can see that the preparatory school submits the student to personality purification and development. As well, he must learn the real meaning of service and, in fact, serve.
379. The preparatory school curriculum is largely microcosmically focussed.
380. Let us tabulate the concerns of the preparatory school:
a. The development of the threefold man
b. The development of the threefold man in service
The advanced school definitely prepares for Initiation, and is concerned with occult lore, with the impartation of cosmic truth, with the abstract development of the pupil, and with work on causal levels.
381. Let us tabulate the functions of the advanced school:
a. It definitely prepares for initiation
b. It is concerned with occult lore
c. It is concerned with the impartation of cosmic truth
d. It is concerned with the abstract development of the pupil
e. It is concerned with work upon the causal levels.
382. We can see that the work in an advanced school is more complex (though more subjective) than the work within the preparatory school.
383. Are we to say that the preparatory school does not prepare the student for initiation? The word “definitely” should be noted. It may be that the preparatory school in some cases prepares the student for initiation, but perhaps this is not necessarily and definitely the case.
384. It has been proposed by students of the new school process that the preparatory schools prepare the student of the second initiation and the advanced school for the third initiation. Whether this assumption is completely substantiated by what the Tibetan has given must be explored.
385. We may have to differentiate between preparation for “Initiation” and preparation for probationary initiations. The initiate of the first and second degree is seen by the Masters as a “probationary initiate”. Only the initiate of the third degree (and beyond) is seen as a true initiate.
One can be best accomplished in the world of men and through contact with the world;
386. We are speaking of the finding of one’s center despite apparent distractions. The student in the preparatory must learn to serve and, normally, this requires contact with the world. Also the development of his threefold personality is furthered by the refining interplay which contact with others affords.
the other demands necessarily an environment of comparative seclusion and freedom from interruption.
387. We do not speak of complete seclusion but only of “comparative seclusion”.
388. Definite preparation for initiation and prolonged meditation of the deeper kind (with a causal or abstract focus) must be pursued relatively free of interruption.
express it thus:—the preparatory grades
deal with the
389. We might call this the discovery of the nature of the soul and the spiritual kingdom in which the soul expresses.
the advanced school expands that training into one which includes the
390. The work of the advanced student is based upon an established knowledge of the soul and its kingdom. It deals with the many and extensive ways in which “God” manifests—the understanding of “God in all things”. A degree of ‘divine inclusivity’ is built into the consciousness.
Therefore the first will be situated amongst the working sons of men, so that by his reactions and interactions in association with them, in service and struggle, the pupil may learn to know himself.
391. Often, we learn who we are by comparing ourselves to others. In the resulting contrasts (as well as in discovered similitudes) lies revelation.
392. We note the emphasis upon the “working sons of men”. The work that all men do must be seen for what it really is and valued. Ever the disciple’s relationship is with humanity. It is important from the outset to avoid the development of any kind of separatism or elitism.
The other will be for those who have somewhat mastered these things, and are ready to learn more of other evolutions and of the cosmos.
393. The curriculum in the advanced school advances far beyond the microcosm.
394. Knowledge is made available not only concerning the deva evolution but of the different orders of evolving “men” (which, as we know, includes Globe Lords, Chain Lords, Heavenly Men and even the Logoi of various stars and stellar systems. The chart on p. 844 or TCF reveals some of various orders of life which the more advanced student will be obliged to study.
395. Simply put, the advanced school cultivates the deeper and wider points of view—deeper and wider both objectively and subjectively.
Until a man is master of himself to a considerable degree he may not safely work, for instance, with the deva or angel evolution.
396. This is a foundational statement. The devas of the lower eighteen sub-planes are to be controlled for beneficent purposes. The exertion of this control is not possible until a man has learned to control the devic substance and patterns within his personality vehicles.
In the preparatory school he learns this mastery;
397. The Fourteen Rules for Applicants to Initiation deal with this preliminary form of mastery.
I would call to your attention that in the Fourteen Rules for Applicants and in the Fourteen Rules for Disciples and Initiates you have the two great foundational courses of the coming Schools of the Mysteries, for which I have prepared the world in Letters on Occult Meditation. (R&I 262)
398. In the preparatory school the student must not only learn to know himself but, preliminarily, to master his lower self.
399. Self-knowledge and self-control are both required.
in the more advanced school he can thus be trusted to make other contacts than the human.
400. Once he has entered the advanced school it can be presumed that he is sufficiently in control of his lower nature to learn to make contact with the deva kingdom. His own potential personal reactions no longer present an impediment or a danger.
In both these schools, the basic instruction is meditation in all its grades.
401. The new schools of occultism are, we must always remember, “Schools of Meditation”.
402. This focus on meditation particularly distinguishes the future schools of occultism from modern colleges and universities.
Why? Because in occult schools information, clear instructions, or a conglomerate of facts are never given, nor are the exoteric textbook methods ever employed.
403. This seems a very sweeping statement, because the Tibetan does, Himself, use the text-book approach on occasion (for instance, as He stated regarding the mode of presentation in A Treatise on Cosmic Fire).
404. What he seems to be saying is that instruction in true occult schools is never limited to such presentations. Always a deeper dimension is implied and the intuition is evoked wherever possible.
405. The concrete mind is useful and is cultivated when learning necessary occult knowledge, but it is never allowed to become a sphere unto itself. Always, it is related to more abstract considerations and principles.
406. We must also remember the occult technique of conveying hints which, quite naturally, invoke the intuition and increase illumination.
The whole aim is only to put the student in the way of finding out for himself the needed knowledge. [Page 313] How? By developing the intuition through meditation, and by the attainment of that measure of mental control that will permit the wisdom of the Triad to pour down into the physical brain, via the causal.
407. DK states succinctly the approach to be used in the new esoteric schools.
408. We are to extract the following:
a. Meditation develops the intuition
b. The wisdom of the Triad can pour down into the physical brain if there is the correct kind of mental control
409. The student cannot be allowed to rest content with knowledge which he may acquire. That knowledge must be extended and its broader and deeper implications understood. This is why “exoteric textbook methods” are never sufficient.
410. There are, however, what might be called ‘esoteric text-book methods’. A certain grounding in facts is offered and the student is enjoined to extend that knowledge in his own way.
Therefore, in the preparatory school emphasis will he laid on the meditation that concerns the mind, and the teaching embodied in this book will be applied.
411. There are many forms of meditation. The type of meditation which concerns the mind is the kind cultivated in the preparatory schools.
412. Along with mental empowerment comes the necessity for practical application. Knowledge gathered must never remain strictly academic. Methods must be found for its application in service.
This necessitates an environment wherein many and varied human contacts will he made, and where the concrete knowledge of the world of men will be easily available (music, libraries, and lectures), for in the preparation of true occult training the astral and mental equipping of the student will be one of the first considerations.
413. There is much building work lying before the student in the preparatory school. He must go a fair way towards knowing what men have known. Upon the basis of the knowledge accumulated, he may enter the Hall of Wisdom rather than remain preoccupied with activities within the Hall of Learning.
414. When we seek to determine the degree of our usefulness to the Masters and Their projects, we have to determine (in all sincerity and practicality) how well equipped we may be (spiritually) and where our deficiencies may lie.
415. We see that in the preparatory school we are definitely concerned with building the causal body.
416. It is curious to see music linked with concrete knowledge. There is concrete knowledge associated with the art of music, but music is also an abstract language which can admit the consciousness to higher realms of energy—both the abstract mind and buddhi.
When this has been somewhat accomplished, and when the clairvoyant head of the school sees that the rounding out of the lower auric egg approaches the desired point,
417. We see that there is nothing arbitrary about passing into the more advanced school. The student makes this passage only when truly ready.
418. It seems fairly certain that the Head of the preparatory school must, himself, be clairvoyant. Elsewhere in these instructions it is suggested that the Head of the school is to work in cooperation with a clairvoyant who is part of the main teaching group. Here we see that the Head, himself, must possess a sufficient degree of clairvoyant capacity.
419. That which is to be achieved is a certain “rounding out”. This is generally true of causal development and especially true for those who can be allowed to pass into the advanced school.
420. DK mentions the “lower auric egg”. This is interesting. From another perspective, He may not be speaking of the causal body at all, but of the degree to which the personality becomes rounded out.
421. From yet another perspective, the vehicles of the spiritual triad can be considered the higher auric egg, and the causal body and its vehicles of expression, the personality vehicles (and their auric envelopes) can be considered the “lower auric egg”.
422. From a practical perspective, the rounding out of the causal body and the ability of the personality to express this rounding out (and thus, itself, to be considered more rounded out) are both of importance.
then the pupil will pass into the more advanced school, and will be taught how from his stable centre to contact the cosmic centre, and from the point within himself to expand his consciousness till it touches the periphery of the system macrocosmic, and embraces all that lives—lives in an occult sense.
423. The type of expansion here discussed is considerable. In the preparatory school the student has acquired a “stable center”. Can he achieve a cosmic expansion in the advanced school, or is a trend simply indicated?
424. The “system macrocosmic” is usually considered the solar system—as the etheric-physical aspect of the Solar Logos. The term might mean here mean, however, the system of the Planetary Logos. This might be somewhat possible for the advanced student.
425. In any case, the orientation towards the embrace of all living things can be cultivated. The sense of inclusivity of an advanced student will definitely grow and even though his consciousness (in any real practical sense) cannot become fully solar systemic, and, even less, cosmic, his consciousness can be greatly expanded in the direction of the inclusions which later will become possible.
This necessitates, during the period of training, comparative seclusion, and this the advanced school will provide.
426. We can understand that a student focussing on very subtle levels of consciousness must, for many hours, remain undisturbed by more mundane considerations and especially from the kinds of interruptions which invariably seem to accompany the normal processes of living among men.
Therefore the preparatory school will be located near some large city, preferably near the sea or some large expanse of water, but never within the city; it will be on the confines of the centres of learning within the city and will be readily accessible.
427. The large city will provide the necessary access to all that is culturally and intellectually enhancing. As previously stated, however, the Internet has brought about a revolutionary access to a vast amount of information and cultural enrichment. We will have to wonder whether the locational requirements here given for preparatory schools will have to be followed as rigorously as proposed by the Tibetan.
428. There is, however, a certain immediacy of interactive and living-contact which, perhaps, the Internet cannot entirely provide, and so the type of location proposed for preparatory schools may still be quite important.
429. We note that we are not speaking of location near a ‘small’ expanse of water such as a pond or river. The vision of a large expanse is important.
The advanced school will be far from the crowded places of the earth and preferably in a mountainous region,
430. Increasingly, it is difficult to find locations which are truly remote.
for the mountains have a direct effect on the occultist and impart to him that quality of strength and steadfastness that is their predominant characteristic and must be that too of the occultist.
431. We see the important suggestive value of the environment. Our surroundings are always (even subliminally) instilling in us certain qualities.
432. The advanced school is training occultists—those who are actually potential candidates for initiation. For such individuals, strength and steadfastness are indispensable.
433. Perhaps we have already noticed how, in the presence of majestic mountains, we tend to become imbued with such qualities.
The sea or expanse of water close to a preparatory school will convey to his [Page 314] mind a constant reminder of the purification which is his paramount work,
434. The words “constant reminder” are important. Environment conveys a constant reminder of certain qualities—valuable, indifferent or inhibitory of purpose.
435. The thought of purification is ever to be held before the consciousness of the student in the preparatory school.
436. The second initiation is often called the “Baptism”. A high degree of spiritual purity must be demonstrated by the time this initiation becomes possible. May we infer then that preparation for the second initiation is one of the possibilities for at least some students attending the preparatory schools?
437. These schools do not definitely prepare for initiation, but with their emphasis upon purification, the inference that such preparation is possible (for the second degree, at least) cannot be overlooked.
438. It may be inferred that students will not be allowed to enter even the preparatory schools unless it can be ascertained that the first degree has been taken or that there exists a strong possibility that it may be taken in the present incarnation.
whilst the mountains will imbue the advanced student with cosmic strength and will hold steadily before him the thought of the Mount of Initiation which he aims soon to tread.
439. I do not think it is reasonable to think that the first initiation (the Birth of the Christ in the Heart) is an objective for those whose major work lies within the advanced school. Technically, however, to take even the first initiation, is to climb the Mount of Initiation—albeit a probationary initiation.
440. To take the second and third degree, of course, is definitely to climb the Mount of Initiation. While the second initiation is still a probationary initiation, it is fundamentally different from the first initiation, and often succeeds it by many lives.
441. The term “Mount of Initiation” is, however, most associated with the third initiation, which many have assumed is the main objective for students in the advanced school
442. If the purification successfully undergone in the preparatory school is, in effect, the second initiation, then the third degree as the principal objective for the students in the advanced school is a reasonable conjecture. This is not to say that some students in the advanced schools may not also be candidates for the second degree.
443. We have to establish whether the curriculum for the advanced school is specifically suited for preparation for the third degree or for both the second and third degrees.
444. Some entering the preparatory schools (those with less spiritual experience) will not be capable of taking the second degree in the current incarnation. Others, it would seem will have taken the first degree in another life and may have lived through a number of lives following the taking of the first degree, and will thus be in a position to continue their purification and to take the second degree.
445. We have to determine whether, under such circumstances, that second degree is likely to be taken during the time of association with a preparatory school or whether they must wait until they are associated with an advanced school.
446. Those who enter an advanced school should, however, be largely purified.
Tomorrow we will take the important factor of the personnel and faculty of the school and the types of building.
We deal today with that portion of our third point in the letter on "Future Schools of Meditation," which deals with the Personnel of the School.
This term includes both those who supervise and those who are under supervision, and the subject is necessarily large.
447. Who are to be the students? Who are to be the ‘teachers’? These matters are of considerable importance if the future schools of occultism are to fulfill their destiny. Among the mistakes that can be made (and perhaps, will be made) those concerning the choice of teachers and students can be the most delaying or even damaging.
As said in the earlier parts of this letter, the schools will be in two divisions wherever situated:—
a. A preparatory school for the earlier grades in occult instruction, and situated preferably near some large expanse of water and near some central city.
448. What do we actually mean by “the earlier grades”? Perhaps those who are in the first stage of discipleship (“Little Chelas”) are definitely in the earlier grades. Perhaps this is also true of some of those who are “Chelas in the Light”.
449. By the time one is an “accepted disciples” technically understood, one has moved or is poised to move beyond the “earlier grades”.
450. Will it be so that every student in an advanced school will be an accepted disciple? If the work in the advanced school is a form of preparation of the third initiation, the probability is high. If preparation for the second initiation is also part of the work of the advanced school, then, perhaps, not all need be accepted disciples. It may be reasonable, however (though not certain) to think that most members of an advanced school will be accepted disciples.
451. In relation to this thought we must remember (as is indicated later in this instruction) that the Head of the preparatory school need only be an accepted disciple and that the two subsidiary heads of an advanced school are, also, to be accepted disciples. If this is the case, it may reduce the likelihood that members of the advanced school must (initially, at least) be accepted disciples.
b. An advanced school for the later grades, which will definitely prepare the way for initiation, and train pupils in occult lore.
452. Some exposure to “occult lore” is already to be given in the preparatory schools, but there are many kinds of occult lore and of varying depth.
453. “Occult lore” may also be associated with what we call “oral tradition”—i.e., that which cannot be communicated in written form because it must not fall into the hands of those who are unprepared. It is reasonable to think that the students of the advanced school will have greater access to ‘occult oral instruction’ than will those in the preparatory school.
As you will consequently see, the personnel of both schools will necessarily differ, as will the curriculum.
454. Let us try to be clear about the distinctions. In that we can avoid falling into misunderstanding, error, and either over- or under-estimation.
We will deal with each type of school separately, and lay down certain fundamentals which must be looked for in instructors and instructed.
455. Because there are many and varied kinds of classes and because intellectual discipline is strenuous, the similarity with an ordinary college may be noted.
The differences will not be recognisable at first to the man of the world,
456. Later the “man of the world” will come to recognize the differences.
though the differences will be there,
457. The strong meditative content of the curriculum is one of the key differences.
and will demonstrate themselves in the school work,
458. That which is provided by soul-perception will be part of this school work.
459. Obviously, the school work will be quite esoteric and will deal with the inner worlds as if they were realities—which they are.
to the pupils,
460. The pupils, some of whom may have been to other colleges, will recognize the differences.
and on the inner planes.
461. Work on the inner planes is part of the curriculum and some of the teachers, at least, must be adept at instructing along this line.
462. Those with clairvoyant vision will of course see the differences in relation to the results achieved on the inner planes.
The fundamentals as regards the instructors are as follows:—
The Head of the school will be an accepted disciple; it is essential that the Master, Who is back of the work of any particular school, should be able at all times to tap the consciousness of that school as focussed through the disciple.
463. An “accepted disciple” is generally a chela who has stands at least midway between the first and second initiation and has the second initiation esoterically ‘in sight’, or a chela who has already achieved the second initiation. We are speaking here of “planetary” initiations and not of solar initiations.
464. We are given an important hint: the consciousness of an accepted disciple is at all times accessible to the Master.
465. We note that it is the consciousness of the entire school which is focussed through a particular school-head. Will the Head consciously contain the “consciousness of the school” in its entirety, or will the Master simply be able to access that consciousness through His access to the consciousness of His disciple who is Head of the school?
466. We also note the role of the Master. He is “back of the work of any particular school”. The future schools of occultism are distinguished from other more exoteric schools and colleges by the very fact that a Master does stand as the ultimate supervisor of these schools.
This Head will be able to act as a medium of communication between the students and the Master and as a focal point for His force to flow through to them.
467. We see that the Head of the school (as an accepted disciple) has a mediating role between his students and his Master.
468. The Head conveys to the students not only his own energy and force but that of his Master.
469. Obviously the purity and consecration of the Head are paramount to success in this endeavor.
He must be consciously able to function on the astral plane at night and to bring the knowledge through to the physical brain, for part of his work will be with students on the astral plane, guiding them to the Master's ashram at certain intervals for specialized work.
470. Thus, a degree of continuity of consciousness is required of the Head of a preparatory school. It would seem that those who have taken the second degree are in a position to have this type of continuity.
471. Obviously, the Head will have to be trustworthy upon the astral plane and this requires, so it would seem, the passing of the second degree. One can be an initiate of the second degree and an accepted disciple at the same time. Further, if there is the possibility that some in the preparatory school may take the second degree (the degree of true astral purification), then it would certainly be necessary for the Head to have taken that degree.
472. A Master’s Ashram is, these days, found upon the buddhic plane, but DK is suggesting that there are astral plane reflections of the Ashram. In some of the Theosophical literature and also in the Autobiography of AAB, ashramic events of this nature are discussed—entry into the Ashram of a certain Master—upon the astral plane, so it would seem.
473. We can see that the students of a preparatory school are trained at night and that the Master and His Ashram are involved in this training.
474. We remember that spiritual/academic instruction is offered to students of spirituality between the hours of and . Some of what we are here discussing comes under this category of inner instruction and training.
He will have to train them too in this conscious functioning.
475. There are certain techniques which allow for this type of functioning. The Head of the school, having mastered these methods, must instruct his chelas accordingly.
476. This is an important requirement if we are speaking of true future schools of occultism and not merely of bridging schools—which, too, are important in their own right, especially during our immediate period of history.
Under him will work six instructors, of whom one at least must be a conscious clairvoyant, and able to assist the Head with his information as to the auric development of the students;
477. These instructors, from what we read below, are all men. One of them is consciously clairvoyant and so is the Head of the school.
478. Generically, the male human being is more related to the concrete mind and the female to the intuitive and astral sensitivities. Obviously, there are many exceptions.
479. Discussion between the Head and the assisting clairvoyant will tend to confirm the accuracy of what either one of them ‘sees’.
480. The aura is multifold and development in all areas—etheric, astral, mental and causal—is considered important. This development is not simply left to chance or to supposition. Development is carefully observed so that the passing of a student to a higher grade may actually be scientifically justified.
he must be able to gauge the colors and expansion of the students' vehicles, and co-operate with the Head in the work of expanding and attuning those vehicles.
481. We have three processes which must occur:
a. Gauging the colors and expansion of a student’s aura
b. Expanding the vehicles
c. Attuning the vehicles
482. We see that the Head and the clairvoyant instructor who assists him are not only observers of the aura, but understand the methods of enhancing it—widening its scope and attuning the vehicles to each other and to higher energy centers such as the soul or the triad.
These instructors must be on the Probationary Path and earnestly devoted to the work of assisting evolution and devoted to the service of some one Master.
483. We begin to see that an instructor in a preparatory school could become a student in an advanced school. Work in a preparatory school, in fact, might be one of the modes of service of those in the advanced school. If so, the time equation would have to be judiciously handled.
484. To say that the instructors must be on the Probationary Path means, probably, that each of them has taken the first initiation.
485. It is curious to note that the main instructors in a preps are not necessarily accepted disciples. One might think they would have to be.
486. The instructors, it would seem, need not all be devoted to the service of the same Master, but as the schools are practically ray schools this may well happen.
487. One who treads the Probationary Path (so its seems) is one who is “earnestly devoted”. We would imagine that such individuals are minimally “pledged disciples”.
488. Can pledged disciples still be treading the Path of Probation; it would seem so. Their status as probationary disciples changes once they become, technically, accepted disciples.
489. It is certainly possible that as they pursue their service within a preparatory school, they could become accepted disciples. We remember however, that even those pursuing their education in an advanced school do not necessary enter as accepted disciples. It is only stipulated that the two assistant teachers of the advanced school must be accepted disciples.
They must and will be carefully chosen so as to supplement and complement each other,
490. The success of a disciple’s work often stands or falls on the wisdom of his choice of co-workers.
491. Not only must students be carefully chosen, but so much the instructors within the school.
492. We are talking about the ideal of true group work, thus balance must be preserved. The faculty cannot be or become one-sided and thus the various faculty members must make up for each other’s deficiencies.
493. The instructors will be primarily upon the same or complementary rays, so the higher aspects of supplementation should be fairly easy to achieve. As for providing ray energies on the other line of force (hard-line for a soft-line school and soft-line, for a hard-line school) the rays of the personalities and the personality vehicles will have to be drawn in.
and in the school will form a miniature hierarchy, showing on the physical plane a tiny replica of the occult prototype.
494. Here we have a direct reference to Rule XI (cf. R&I 213). The third point of preparation for the execution of Rule XI is the development of the ability to work as a “miniature hierarchy”.
495. Those who are to be members of the faculty of a preparatory school will find the entire chapter on Rule XI indispensable reading.
As their work will be largely to develop the lower mind of the pupil and to link it up with the higher consciousness,
496. This is initially academic work and eventually the antahkarana work.
and as the focal point of their endeavour will be the rapid building-in the causal body,
497. This is especially important for the students of a preparatory school. To build the causal body is foundational to success in the antahkarana work.
they will be men of erudition,
498. DK literally means “men”—i.e., males. Will this stipulation regarding the sex of seven of the main instructors hold or will it be one of those presented details not to emerge in manifestation exactly as presented?
499. “Men of erudition” are learned men.
and of knowledge, grounded in the knowledge of the Hall of Learning,
500. The work of even a preparatory school focuses within the Hall of Wisdom (entry into which Hall begins with the first initiation).
501. It is expected however, that in both teachers and students, significant accomplishment will exist in relation to the Hall of Learning.
and able to teach and to compete with the trained teachers of the world universities.
502. This is very important for the advancement of the future occult schools. They cannot be looked upon as only spiritually focussed and, hence, academically inferior. Such schools must have at least what the world universities have (in terms of the quality of their instructors) and then more—in fact, much more.
In every college the work of these trained seven men will be aided by that of three women chosen for their capacity to teach, for their intuitive development and for the spiritual and devotional touch they will bring to the lives of the students.
503. Some may think that, presenting this requirement as He does, the Tibetan is stereotyping. They might argue that there are women or erudition and men whose strongest point is their intuitive development and the spiritual and devotional touch they are equipped to bring to the students. They would be correct in their argument.
504. Of course, He may have very definite occult reasons for specifying the personnel of the instructors as He does. His reasons may become clearer to us as the externalization of the Hierarchy proceeds.
505. It must nevertheless be noted that in the Theosophical and AAB groups as presently constituted, the women outnumber the men rather significantly. Did Master DK foresee this? Would His requirements still be the same in light of the present ‘occult demographics’?
506. As well, the great founders of the modern Ageless Wisdom presentations to the West have all been women—Helena Petrovna Blavatsky, Alice A. Bailey and Helena Roerich (Agni Yoga)
507. For the time being, however, it seems best to trust what He has said and inquire of Him further when opportunity presents.
To these ten teachers will be entrusted the work of grounding the students in the important essentials, in superintending the acquirement of the rudiments of occult lore and science, and their development in the higher psychism.
508. Let us tabulate for the sake of clarity and emphasis the requirements which fall to the ten “teachers” or major instructions:
a. Grounding the students in important essentials
b. Superintending the acquirement of the rudiments of occult lore and science. (We remember that the assimilation of “occult lore” became really focal in the advanced school.)
c. The development of the higher psychism.
These ten must be profound students of meditation, and able to superintend and teach the pupils the rudiment of occult meditation, as taught, for instance, in this book.
509. If we put two and two together, we shall see that it is possible to be one who treads the Path of Probation and still be a profound student of meditation for all of these teachers must be minimally treading the Path of Probation.
510. DK is also telling us that Letters on Occult Meditation contains only the “rudiment of occult meditation”. This should give us pause as certain practices suggested in this book are very deep.
Occult facts will be imparted to these pupils by them
511. So indeed the impartation of “facts” is of importance. The tendency among modern students of spirituality to discount the value of the concrete mind must, itself, be discounted.
and the basic laws that—in the advanced school—will be the subject of definite practice by the would-be initiate.
512. In the preparatory school the students will learn of and learn that which they must learn to practice and apply in the advanced school.
513. Again is it suggested that those in the advanced school are “would be initiate(s)”. Is one who is an initiate only so if he or she has taken the third degree? This must be investigated further.
514. Those in the preparatory school, so it seems, are not (by the fact that they are there) “would-be-initiate(s)”, but those in the advanced schools, necessarily are.
Exercises in telepathy, causal communication, reminiscence of work undertaken during the hours of sleep, and the recovering of the memory of past lives, through certain mental processes, will be taught by them,—themselves proficient in these arts.
515. Here are further examples of those arts in which the ten major teachers in a preparatory school must be proficient:
b. Causal communication
c. Reminiscence of work on subtler planes undertaken during the hours of sleep
d. The memory of past lives
516. We note that past lives are recoverable through certain mental processes. Perhaps such processes involve the mental unit.
517. It is important to note that the mind must be involved in this type of recovery. It is not strictly an astral process; were it so, there might enter much distortion as is presently the case with many of those who claim to remember past lives or to teach others how to do so.
518. In order for such recovery to be successful, however, the astral body must be pure.
As you will see here, all these teachers will be devoted to the definite training and inner development of the threefold man.
519. In the last few text entries we have seen the kind of training for which the ten teachers are responsible. We see that the “training and inner development of the threefold man” is a somewhat technical matter. Good intentions on the part of the teachers are not enough; definite types of occult proficiency are required.
Under these will work various other teachers, who will superintend other departments of the pupils' lives.
520. We do not know how many, but probably there will be more of these various “other teachers” than of the major ten. All areas of the proposed curriculum for the preparatory school must be adequately covered.
Exoteric science will be taught and practised by proficient teachers,
521. We recall that every preparatory school will have associated with its faculty a teacher upon the fifth ray; whether the fifth ray will be the soul ray or the personality ray of such a teacher is not given.
522. The additional faculty is very much responsible for the development of the lower mind. However, in the general discussion concerning the schools, we have been warned of the dangers of the overdevelopment of the concrete mind.
523. Because the ten principal teachers are profound students of meditation, they will be in a position to keep the concrete mind in check.
524. Their task of supervision or oversight is largely concerned with ensuring the balanced development of the students.
and the lower mind will be developed as much as possible, and kept in check by the other ten teachers who watch over the proportional development, and the aptitude for correct meditation of the student.
525. If the adjunct faculty (let us call them that) are largely responsible for the development of the concrete mind of the students, the ten supervisory teachers have the following responsibilities:
a. Ensuring the proportional development of the students
b. Ensuring the development of the aptitude for correct meditation amongst the students.
526. We can see something of the structure of the “miniature hierarchy”.
a. The Master, behind the scenes and really the Head of the entire process
b. The Head of the preparatory school
c. The nine teachers who with the Head form the ten principal faculty members and who teach the more occult subjects and approaches.
d. The adjunct faculty or additional teachers largely responsible for developing the concrete mind of the students as much as may be possible
Along with all this will be the life of world-service, rigidly demanded of each and every pupil.
527. We note again the use of the idea of “rigidity”. The life of service is “rigidly demanded of each and every pupil”. There is no evading this requirement. The danger of spiritual selfishness and elitism is too great and world need too appalling.
This life of service will be carefully watched and recorded.
528. The Tibetan has often told us that it is not easy truly to serve. The supervisors will watch for the quality of service but the serving student must also watch and evaluate his output in service and his progress.
529. There is a ‘Science of Service’ and in this science the student must become adept.
530. The teachers are, it would seem, serving largely by being teachers in these schools.
One thing to be noted here is that in this there will be no compulsion.
531. In relation to the Science of Spiritual Occultism, the freewill may not be violated. The supervisors of any school must count on the relative spiritual maturity of the students. If this is sufficient, the students will practice occult obedience and carry out that which is expected of them—by the supervisors and by their own soul and Master.
The pupil will know what is expected of him and what he [Page 317] must do if he is to pass on to the more advanced schools,
532. While the requirements are clear, not all the subtleties may be clear to the students, many of whom will not be naturally clairvoyant.
and the school's charts (recording the condition of his vehicles, and his progress and his capacity to serve) will all be available for his personal inspection, though to no one else.
533. There will be an entirely conscious approach. The student will not be manipulated. He will see for himself.
534. Two factors stand out as of the greatest important:
a. The student’s actual progress as reflected in the school’s charts. The condition of his vehicles will demonstrate whether there has actually been spiritual progress and whether the progress is sufficient to warrant his passage to the advanced school
b. His capacity to serve. Has this capacity grown and is it sufficient to warrant his passage to the advanced school?
535. We may remember that there are some technical requirements related to the factor of service. We must remember that no one can become a member of the New Group of World Servers unless his heart center is linked up with the heart centers of at least eight other people.
He must have the heart centre awakened, and be so outgoing in his "behaviour" that the heart is rapidly linked up with the heart centres of at least eight other people. Groups of nine awakened aspirants can then be occultly absorbed in the heart centre of the planetary Logos. Through it, His life can flow and the group members can contribute their quota of energy to the life influences circulating throughout His body. The above piece of information is only of interest to those who are spiritually awakened, and will mean little or nothing to those who are asleep. (EP II 197)
He will know clearly where he stands, what he must do and what remains to be done, and it rests then with him to aid the work by the closest co-operation.
536. Students in the preparatory schools tread the conscious way. It is their responsibility to fulfill the clearly presented requirements and to take action in relation to the spiritual condition in which they find themselves.
A certain amount of care will be taken in the admittance of pupils to the school, and this will obviate the necessity of later removal for inability or lack of interest, but this I will deal with later, when taking up the grades and classes.
537. Caution is needed in relation to all occult undertakings.
538. We might think that while inability might be found in certain students who present themselves for participation in a preparatory school, “lack of interest” would not be one of their liabilities.
539. However, even among the Tibetan’s groups of nine and the later New Seed Group of twenty-four, insufficient interest was demonstrated by a number of His chelas, and so it is a very real consideration.
You have, therefore, ten superintending teachers, composed of seven men and three women, including a Head who is an accepted disciple.
540. Here is a summary statement concerning the constitution of the personnel of the main teaching faculty of the preparatory schools.
541. Is only the Head of the school an “accepted disciple” technically understood? It need not necessarily be the case, but at least the Head must be an accepted disciple for the reasons already elaborated.
Under them will work a set of instructors who will deal largely with the lower mind and in the emotional, physical and mental equipping of the pupil,
542. The adjunct faculty contributes to the threefold equipping—mental, emotional and physical. Without their efforts, the growth of the student’s causal body would not proceed as rapidly.
and his passing into the advanced school in a condition to profit by the instructions there to be imparted.
543. The implication is that unless the causal body of the student is in a certain condition and equipped to a certain degree, he or she cannot profit from the kind of instruction to be imparted in the advanced school.
544. A nation cannot have an occult school of the new kind unless the causal body of the nation is in a certain effective condition. A student cannot profit from deeply occult instruction unless his causal body is sufficiently equipped.
545. The lesson to all of us is to proceed intently with the equipping of our causal bodies so that we may be ready not only to make the needed individual progress but to assist our nation in reaching a degree of development necessary to support an esoteric school or to contribute actively to the support of an esoteric school in a nation which is destined to have one.
Here I would point out that I have planned out the ideal, and pictured for you the school as it is hoped it will eventually be.
546. The ideal is indeed given. We may question whether (from the Master’s perspective) that ideal has changed due to the many changes which have arisen over the last ninety or so years since these instructions were written. However, it may be wise to credit the Master with a certain amount of foresight and with the ability to put forth the outlines of an ideal structure which may abide despite numerous environmental and developmental vicissitudes in the human condition.
But as in all occult development, the beginning will be small and of little apparent importance.
547. DK emphasizes the humble beginning of the schools over and again. Perhaps He hopes that we will recognize these humble beginnings for what they are (probably because the “esoteric sense” is sufficiently developed within us) and also that we will not lose faith if our destiny is to participate in the creation of an esoteric school (the unfoldment of which will probably proceed quite slowly).
Tomorrow we will take up the rules governing the admission of students and the personnel of the more advanced school.
548. We might wonder whether such information could be of immediate concern to us, but as we have seen, work on even the advanced schools was scheduled to begin long before the present day.
......Today we will take up:—
The personnel of the advanced school, and the rules of admission to both the preparatory and advanced. This latter part will be largely technical.
549. There are “rules of admission”. Whether they will be completely fulfilled in the early stages of the development of the school-process remains to be seen. Certainly, once the true and future schools of occultism appear, the rules will, I suspect, demand rigid adherence.
550. We should realize that although Master DK is a second ray Master, there is much in His nature relating to the first ray (it is triadal He has told us), and in many respects He is necessarily uncompromising.
The first point I seek to make here is that these advanced schools will be numerically small, and this for a very long time to come, and the personnel will be correspondingly [Page 318] small....
551. Probably in the original text there was some elaboration of this point, not available to us at this time.
552. We are speaking not of the number of advanced esoteric schools, which is pre-determined as seven, but of the size of the faculty and student body.
553. Strict figures for the student body are not given, but the diagram on p. 323, seems to indicate the number twenty-four—the number of Shamballa.
At the head of the school will always be found an Initiate of the first or second degree, the aim of the school being to prepare pupils for the first initiation.
554. A close study of this statement will indicate that it probably should not be taken at face value. In the Teaching, the third initiation is often called the first, and thus, by inference, the second degree becomes the fourth.
555. An “accepted disciple” is always (with only one exception to be found throughout the books) an initiate of the first degree and usually relatively close to the second.
556. If there is to be a distinction between the Head of the preparatory school (who is necessarily an “accepted disciple”) and the Head of the advanced school who is an “Initiate” (and please note the capitalization of the word which may contain a hint), then the initiatory rank of the Head of the advanced school must be greater than that of the preparatory Head.
557. It would seem that Master DK is being purposely ambiguous to avoid engaging the crystallizing and categorizing tendency of the concrete mind.
558. The curriculum of the preparatory school is far too advanced to focus on those who are not minimally aspirants on the Probationary Path. The curriculum of the advanced school is really far too advanced to focus on those who are only preparing for the Birth of the Christ in the Heart—the planetary first degree.
559. The quite “cosmic” embrace of the advanced school curriculum and the degree of independence expected of an advanced school student belie the likelihood that they are being trained for the planetary first degree.
This necessarily requires an Initiate head.
560. The “Initiate Head” is almost certainly an Initiate (note the capitalization) of the third degree or even, perhaps in some of the schools with a highly occult emphasis, of the fourth degree.
561. He is, I contend, a true Initiate, and not just a probationary Initiate.
This Initiate head will be definitely appointed by the Master Who has the school in charge,
562. Not only is the Initiate Head an accepted disciple; He is more. He is not only “on the thread”, but, so it would seem “in the aura” of the Master and can be consciously addressed by the Master through an “interview”—whether on the inner planes or (when the Externalization is well in process) on the physical plane.
563. It is clear that there is a definite line of conversation and exchange proceeding between the Master and the potential Head of an advanced school. Thus, again, that such a Head would be merely an initiate of the first degree (conventionally considered) seems highly unlikely.
and he will be—within the confines of the school—sole judge and autocrat.
564. The term “autocrat” is hardly popular in these “politically correct” days, yet this is the word used by the Tibetan. All forms of government have their virtues: Democracy, Communism, Monarchy, Meritocracy, and Autocracy.
565. The advanced school will be run, so it seems, as an autocracy.
566. The spiritual development of the Head of such a school must be considerable and irrefutably established in the eyes of the students and the world. He will be what he must be and no less. Wishful thinking will not make him into such a leader. He will be a proven Initiate of the third or fourth degree and there will be no question of his rank or capability.
The risks of occult training are too great to permit of trifling, and what the Head demands must be obeyed.
567. The Head is the direct representative of the Master so this section of text basically tells us that what the Master demands (through His representative) must be obeyed.
568. Certainly we are not dealing with normal democratic procedures. The principal of hierarchy is solidly at work. This will require that occult obedience be virtually a spiritual-reflex in those who hope to participate as chelas in such a school.
But this obedience will not be compulsory but voluntary, for each pupil will realise the necessity and will render obedience from spiritual recognition.
569. Again, the importance of free will is emphasized.
570. Pupils must have their consciousness sufficiently deepened and expanded so that they will see for themselves the need to obey the Head. No one can be passed into the advanced school unless this scope and depth of consciousness is well established in them. Hence the critical nature of the choice regarding who can move forward from a preparatory school into an advanced school and who cannot.
As aforesaid, these different occult schools will be practically ray schools, and will have for their personnel teachers on some one ray or its complementary ray, with pupils on the same ray or complementary ray.
571. There is a certain uniformity in all this. There will be schools along the two-four-six line and those along the one-three-five-seven line.
572. No matter what the primary ray quality of the school, however, all rays will be to a degree represented.
573. This will mean that if students from a certain country wish to go to the school associated with that country, their major ray will have to fit with the ray of the school (either being identical or a complementary ray). If this is not the case, and they are worthy to attend a preparatory or advanced school, they may have to attend the schools associated with a country other than their own. The implications of this will have to be investigated.
For instance, if the school is a second ray
school—such as the one in
574. It is not said that no student or teacher on a ray other than the major ray of the school (or one of its complementary rays) can be found within that school, but it seems very clear that the overwhelming tendency will be for the teachers and students in a particular school to be on the ray of the school (or on one of its complementary rays). We are speaking of the soul rays of the teachers and students.
At least one fifth ray teacher will be found in every school of occultism.
575. This is a critical statement. We may remember that via the fifth ray, individuals can transfer from the Path of Mysticism to the Path of Occultism. In some of the schools, the student body will have many who have been on the Path of Mysticism.
576. In addition, simply for the sake of clear thinking, it is necessary to have a teacher on the fifth ray. We are probably speaking of a teacher with a fifth ray soul, but this cannot at this time be confirmed. Perhaps an adequately scientific approach can be generated by a teacher with a fifth ray personality and, perhaps, a fifth ray mind.
If a first ray school, the personnel and pupils will be first, third and seventh ray, with again a fifth ray teacher among the others.
577. The fifth ray is also one of the primary rays of the occultist. The true occultist is found on the first ray, and those with fifth ray souls transfer most frequently (when refocussing on a different soul ray) to the first ray.
Ray I — Force — Energy — Action — The Occultist.
Ray II — Consciousness — Expansion — Initiation — The true Psychic.
Ray III — Adaptation — Development Evolution — The Magician.
Ray IV — Vibration — Response — Expression — The Artist.
Ray V — Mentation — Knowledge — Science — The Scientist.
Ray VI — Devotion — Abstraction — Idealism — The Devotee.
Ray VII — Incantation — Magic — Ritual — The Ritualist. (DON 145)
578. Because the schools are paired, it would seem to be a frequent occurrence that a student attending a certain preparatory school would transfer to the advanced school that is paired with it.
579. If this is the case, then a certain clarifying principle is introduced when seeking to understand which rays are to be associated with the different schools.
It would, for instance, be unlikely, that a preparatory school on
the hard line would be associated with an advanced school on the soft-line. The
Under the initiate Head will be two other teachers who will be accepted disciples, and every pupil under them must have passed through the preparatory school, and graduated from all the lower grades.
581. The “initiate Head” will have two major associates. One may deal primarily with internal affairs and the other with external affairs. This is one explanation of the threefold structure which is often found in the directorate of esoteric organizations.
The importance of understanding the function of triangles is a prime necessity. A hint lies here for students in the political realm, where every country, under differing names, has its chosen ruler, and its ministers responsible for home affairs (or interior relations), and its foreign secretary, responsible for exoteric relationships. (R&I 271)
582. Who, then, are the confirmed “accepted disciples” associated with these schools:
a. The Head of the preparatory school
b. The two subsidiary Heads of the advanced school
583. This, though, tends to confirm the thought that the initiatory status of the Head of the advanced school is as an Initiate of the third degree.
584. Technically, once a disciple has attained to the third degree (having been before this point an “accepted disciple”), he is no longer (technically considered) an accepted disciple. Instead, he is called an “Initiate”.
Probably these three will comprise the entire teaching staff, for the pupils under them will he relatively few in number and the work of the teachers is supervisory more than didactic, for the occultist is always esoterically self-taught.
585. The advanced school (emphasizing the will as well as love) is a school for the training of occultists.
586. The true occultist is “esoterically self-taught”. This means that would-be-occultists (really, would-be-initiates) are Self-taught—taught by the soul within in them and through access to the spiritual triad. Note the thought behind the word “intuition”—‘in—tuition’—teaching (or tuition) from within.
587. What is the difference between supervisory and didactic teaching? Didactic teaching has more to do with the impartation of facts and knowledge, per se. Already DK has emphasized the lack of emphasis in this direction—even for the preparatory school. Yet, elsewhere, He emphasizes the importance of the training of the mind and of the acquisition of knowledge. The right approach is the balanced approach.
588. The model seems to call for a teaching staff of three persons and a student body perhaps numbering no more than twenty-four.
589. The type of education proceeding within an advanced school will be intensive and highly individual, although the Rules for Group Progress will undoubtedly be of major importance in such a school—as the Tibetan states.
Much of the work done by these three will be on the inner planes, and they will work more in the seclusion of their own rooms than in class room with the students [Page 319] themselves.
590. It is clear that the attainment of the three teachers will be considerable, otherwise they could not work in the way suggested.
591. We can see that in the method of instruction offered in an advanced school, there is a certain transcendence of speech as usually considered.
592. The whole process demanded is highly subjective and occult.
593. If these three will not work so much in classrooms, will there actually be much class room activity? Perhaps not, when comparison is made to the preparatory school.
594. If graduates of the preparatory school will, towards the end of their novitiate, be able to pursue a meditation schedule lasting some five hours a day, this ability is definitely well within the capacity of the Head of the advanced school and his two assistants.
The pupils are—it will be presumed—ready to work for themselves and to find the way to the portal of initiation alone.
595. This is ever the way in. Just as the building of the antahkarana is pursued (in its later stages) without specific instruction, so is the treading of the final section of the Path leading to the third initiation and to initiations beyond.
The work of the teachers will be advisory, and they will be available to answer questions and to superintend work initiated by the pupil himself, and not compelled by the teacher.
596. Since the students in an advanced school are working increasingly with the aspect of will, they will obviously have to be capable of initiating their own spiritual process and projects.
597. Such students will be “enquiring the Way” and will, in this process, answer many difficult questions for themselves, but there is always need for expert supervision and the answering of some questions (where permitted) by a party who has more knowledge and experience than the student.
598. We see that a great deal of spiritual Self-reliance will characterize the students in the advanced school. They are guided but they are not directed or compelled. Direction, as ever, comes from within the student himself.
Stimulating vibration, aligning the bodies, superintending the work on inner planes, and the pouring in of force with the shielding from danger by occult methods, will be the work, in part, of the Teachers, added to the supervision of definite and strenuous meditation.
599. These are such important lines of work and we should tabulate them for clarity.
600. The work of the “Teachers” in an advanced school is as follows:
a. Stimulating vibration
b. Assisting in the alignment of the bodies of the students
c. Superintending the work on the inner planes. We can see that continuity of consciousness will be a definite requirement for the three Teachers of the advanced school. Even the Head of the preparatory school had to have some of this type of ability.
d. The pouring in of force
e. The shielding from danger (through the utilization of occult methods)
f. The supervision of definite and strenuous meditation. If the concluding meditative work within the preparatory school required five hours of meditation daily, the “strenuous” work pursued within an advanced school must be (if this can be imagined) even more demanding.
g. Conducting the pupils to the Master (presumably in out-of-body states). This was also a requirement of the Head of the preparatory school.
h. Advise (presumably, the Master) regarding the passing into the different grades of disciples—Accepted Discipleship, Chela on the Thread, Chela within the Aura, etc.
i. Assist in building the buddhic vehicle.
j. Report at intervals on the quality of the students’ service
k. Superintend the working of theory into practice in relation to the deva kingdom
l. Watch over the manipulation of matter by the student.
m. Watch over the student’s demonstration of the “laws of construction”
n. Teach students to wield the law
o. Teach students to “transcend karma”.
p. Safeguard the student when contacting sub-human and super-human kingdoms. We remember that two of these teachers are only “accepted disciples”, yet much is required of them.
q. Instruct in the ability to recover the knowledge of past lives
r. Instruct in the ability to read the akashic records
601. The requirements are considerable and demanding.
602. Some of the many requirements have been given in one complete list above, yet a few more things may be said about them.
At intervals they will conduct the pupils to the Master, advise as to their passing into the different grades of discipleship,
603. Given the kinds of students likely to be found in the advanced schools, the relevant grades of discipleship will be:
a. Accepted Discipleship
b. Chela on the Thread
c. It would be rare for a disciple to be instructed concerning the state of “Chela in the Aura” as this would require that the disciple be already an Initiate of the third degree. Were that the case, he would probably not be found in an advanced school, unless he was simply in the process of recapitulating previous stages of attainment.
604. We note that all three of the Teachers in an advanced school seem to have the ability to conduct the pupils to the Master. This is not unreasonable as the Head of the preparatory school (who is also minimally an accepted disciple) had the same ability.
report at intervals on the quality of their life service
605. Success in the life of service is always paramount and there must be objective criteria related to the degree of success
and assist them in building their buddhic vehicle, which has to be in an embryonic condition when the First initiation is taken.
606. Here is a very important point and one not easy to interpret. Must the buddhic vehicle be in an embryonic condition when the first planetary initiation is taken or when the third initiation is taken?
607. Since all five of the usual initiations involve the growth of the buddhic faculty, it is not unreasonable to think that even at the first planetary initiation the buddhic vehicle must be in, at least, an embryonic condition.
608. Yet the following statements suggests that the buddhic vehicle is really coordinated following the third initiation, and the requirement for the third degree (called “intuitive instinct”) further corroborates this idea.
609. The first of these quotations occurs in a section which describes work undertaken after the third initiation and before the fourth. The second quotation speaks for itself.
He begins rapidly to co-ordinate the buddhic vehicle, and in its co-ordination he develops the power of synthesis, at first in small measure, and gradually in fuller detail. (IHS 89)
After the third initiation a corresponding stimulation takes place in the permanent atoms of the Triad, leading to a co-ordination of the buddhic vehicle, and the transference of the lower polarisation into the higher. (IHS 139, TCF 208)
610. It would seem from these references, that the “First initiation” of which we are speaking in the text above is, indeed, the third initiation. Again, note the capitalization of the word “First”, which is not always the case when the first initiation is discussed and may indicate a hint.
The teachers likewise superintend the working out in practice of the theories anent the other evolution, the deva evolution, laid down in the preparatory schools;
611. From theory to practice. The occultist is ever a practical individual. We could call Capricorn the sign of the true occultist and we may remember the ability of those born in this sign to reach towards and attain spiritual heights even as they plumb the depths of matter.
they watch over the manipulation of matter by the pupil and his demonstration of the laws of construction;
612. This is definite work with the deva kingdom and is not merely theoretical learning concerning it.
613. Students of this kind (in the advanced schools) are in a fair way becoming white magicians.
they safeguard him as far as may be in his contact with sub-human and super-human evolutions, and teach him to wield the law
614. Workers with the Divine Will are becoming wielders of the law.
and to transcend karma.
615. The one who obeys the law and wields the law releases himself from ordinary human karma. Even the Solar Logos, however, has not transcended karma in the larger sense, and so with all greater Beings.
616. The method of releasing oneself from generated karma is a scientific method requiring information gained by clairvoyant means. It is here that the council of the clairvoyant Head of the advanced school and his capable assistants is of such value.
617. The approach in the case of each student is highly individual.
They enable him, through their instructions, to recover the knowledge of past lives and to read the akashic records,
618. He may begin to see for himself the karma which must be transcended and how he may do so.
619. We must understand that strict vegetarianism (for ten years) will be required of such students or they could not read the akashic records with accuracy.
but as you will see, the pupil is the one in this school who initiates and does the work, superintended and guarded by the teachers, and his progress and the length of his residence within the school depend upon his own effort and initiatory powers.
620. Here is a summary statement. The roles of both the teachers and students are defined—the teachers superintending and guarding, and the students initiating their own work.
621. The stay of students in the preparatory school may be up to seven years and in some cases more. We are not (in this section) told how long the stay in the advanced schools will last.
622. It the duration of the stay depends upon the students “effort and initiatory powers”, then that stay may last until the student has taken the third initiation. At least, this seems to be the goal.
623. If this is the case, the “initiatory powers” coming from the student are those which determine his possibility for taking the third initiation.
The rules of admission into the preparatory school will be somewhat as follows, but I only indicate probabilities and not ascertained and fixed facts:—
624. The Tibetan leaves room for flexibility. To dictate how things must be is to rob the school-founders of free will and to open the door to well-meaning but obviously counterproductive methods involving dogmatic enforcement.
1. The pupil must be free from obligatory karma and able to take the course without neglecting his other duties and family ties.
625. First things first. One cannot build occult attainment on the neglect of one’s duties.
626. Of course it will be necessary to determine which obligations and duties are authentic and which may only seem to be duties and obligations. A keen discrimination will be needed.
627. Perhaps the hope of joining a true occult school will encourage prospective students to work off their inhibitory karma as rapidly as possible.
2. There will be no fees or money charged, and no money transaction.
628. This principle ensures the operation of meritocracy. If money were to be charged for school attendance, some otherwise worthy students might be excluded and this is not permissible according to occult law.
The pupil must be somewhat self-supporting and able to earn the means of livelihood whilst in the school.
629. This ensures his continuing relation to the outer world of working men and women. It also necessitates that the student determine how much he really needs rather than how much he may want. The choice is given to the student.
630. It is interesting to remember that Jesus was a carpenter and that Paul of Tarsus made tents to support himself—at least before his mission came fully into expression.
The schools in both their divisions will be supported through the voluntary contributions of people,
631. This requirement necessitates that the school and its value be convincingly and magnetically presented to the general public. It is of value for those who are responsible for the school’s perpetuation to prove the relevance of school processes to those whom the school is intended to serve and to society in general.
632. Again, through “voluntary contributions” the principle of free will rather than compulsion is emphasized.
and through a knowledge of the laws of supply and demand occultly interpreted.
633. This is actually quite an occult statement. What are the schools supplying? Certainly something quite intangible yet highly valuable. It will be for the perpetuators of the school process to learn what they have to offer and to recognize the demand for this offering. It will also be up to them to cultivate the latent demand for spiritual truth.
634. They must learn to modify, qualify and adapt the Plan to the actualities of the present moment. This will call for skill-in-action on their part. They will learn much from the process.
3. The pupil must be able to measure up to the average educational standards of his day and generation and must show aptitude for some line of thought.
635. Students cannot simply be average individuals. They must be distinguished not only by intellectual/academic ability, but by particular spiritual/academic strengths.
636. It is important that the occult schools not be dismissed in the minds of the intelligent as intellectually weak. They must be respected and the students within them must be intellectually respectable—even though intellect alone is not enough to render a student worthy of attending such schools.
637. Within the occult schools the students are to distinguish themselves and to make a valuable contribution (along some line) to the welfare of humanity. They are not in such a school simply to receive, but to enhance their abilities to give.
4. He must be seen clairvoyantly to have a certain amount of co-ordination and alignment and the causal body must be of a certain grade or quality before he is admitted.
638. DK is leaving the specifics out of the discussion. These specifics are known by the supervising Master and will be communicated to the clairvoyant Head of both schools and to their clairvoyant assistants—some of them, at least, are to be clairvoyant.
639. In this requirement, we may be speaking of “petal development”. If students in even the preparatory school are to be approaching the period of the first initiation or to have taken it, this will be seen in the condition of the causal body and by, at least, the organization and initial unfoldment of sacrifice tier of petals.
640. The implication of what is said above is that coordination and alignment of the causal body with the lower vehicles can be seen as can the quality of matter of the causal body—presumably by its color and the frequency and intensity of its vibration. Or perhaps for clairaudient investigators, the tone or tones of the causal body in relation to the tone or tones of the personality vehicles will reveal the degree of coordination or alignment.
Teachers of occultism waste not time on those not ready.
641. The Law of Economy must be respected for the sake of the welfare of the whole.
Only when the inner light shines forth, only when the causal body is of a certain capacity can the pupil profit by the curriculum.
642. When we speak of the inner light shining forth, we may presume that the light of the soul must be somewhat visible within the mental body and that the causal body must be animated by the presence and influence of the Solar Angel.
643. Perhaps, on the eve of or following the first initiation, there will be a peculiar light demonstration within the causal body itself.
644. We can see that entry into such schools is not based only upon aspiration or upon one’s ability to pay one’s way. Definitely occult requirements must be met. Whether these requirements actually have been met can only be ascertained by clairvoyants who work under expert supervision.
645. We can see that this type of investigation, if it is to produce accurate results, is not easy of attainment.
Therefore, with the Head of the school will the final verdict lie as to whether a pupil may enter or not.
646. Again, the autocratic approach, but it is a beneficent autocracy.
That word will be final, and will be passed after due inspection of the pupil by the Head of the school through clairvoyant and causal vision, and after reference to the man's own Master.
647. Who is involved in deciding whether a prospective student—even for a preparatory school—can become an actual student?
a. The Head of the preparatory school in consultation with a clairvoyant faculty member
b. The Master Who works through the Head of the preparatory school
c. The Master of the student who is seeking admission. Not all students in the same esoteric school need be chelas of the same Master, though the rays of the Masters concerned will be, in all probability, identical or complementary.
5. He must have demonstrated, by a previous period of service, his ability to work in group formation and to think in terms of others.
648. Those who apply must be proven servers. It is not that they learn to serve within the preparatory school. They are already proven servers whose service is enhanced by the instruction they receive in the preparatory school.
649. Anything said about service in relation to the preparatory school is only intensified in relation to the advanced school.
650. Entering students are fundamentally altruistic.
a. They have group experience and have somewhat succeeded in this type of experience
b. They think in terms of others. In other words, they have begun to fulfill the very first Rule presented in the Fourteen Rules for Applicants to Initiation.
6. His past incarnations must be somewhat looked up, and the indications given through their study will guide the Head in his final decision.
651. This is a most occult requirement. The looking up need not be exhaustive, but recent lives relevant to the present incarnational period and its karma will have to be referenced.
Naught can then be hidden and at each turn a man must face himself.” (Rules of the Road).
7. The pupil must he over twenty-one and under forty-two years of age.
652. The number forty-two is exactly twice twenty-one. One can only think that there must be specific occult reasons for this stipulation. It may have something to do with chakric development. By the time an individual is twenty one his etheric body is more or less in the same condition developmentally as it was when his previous life ended. Also, at twenty-one he has reached his “majority”. Three of his five vehicles are relatively coordinated—his physical, emotional and mental vehicles. The full integration of the personality yet remains (archetypally at twenty-eight) as does soul infusion (archetypally at thirty-five).
653. As for the ceiling at forty-two, by the time a disciple is forty-nine years old he must be in the correct place engaged in the correct line of service.
By the time a disciple reaches the age of forty-nine his pathway of life service should be clearly defined. (DINA II 742)
654. Entry at the age of forty-two at least gives a few years in which to establish this line of service. The usual maximum stay in the preparatory school is seven years.
8. His etheric body must be in good condition and be a good transmitter of prana, and there must be no physical disease or handicapping physical deformity.
655. This has something to do with his karmic readiness to undertake the necessary work.
656. Obviously, the school group must be protected from physical disease. If diseased conditions exist as evidences of karma the karma must work itself out under the normal conditions of living.
657. We also see that only healthy students will be allowed to enter. The work of occult training is strenuous and is doomed to failure if the vitality is insufficient (i.e., if the etheric body is not in good condition and is a poor transmitter of prana).
658. We note that a student is not excluded for reasons of physical deformity but only if the physical deformity is “handicapping”—i.e., it would prevent him from properly fulfilling the school requirements.
These are the fundamental rules which it is at present possible to give. There will be others and the problem of selection may pass through some vicissitudes in solving.
659. We see that nothing is completely “cut and dried”. As always, there will be room for interpretation and certain cases may be difficult to solve, requiring much discerning judgment.
660. There may be “ups and downs” in learning to select students wisely, but at length stable understanding will be attained.
The rules for admission into the advanced school are far more esoteric and fewer in number.
661. We remember that in all cases the students selected for the advanced school will have passed through at least some time in a preparatory school.
The pupils will be chosen from out of the preparatory school, after having passed through the graded courses.
662. There is no privileged and immediate entry into an advanced school without passing through the earlier school—even if rapidly (in the case of highly developed individuals).
But selection will depend not on the mental development and the assimilation of concrete knowledge, but upon the inner comprehension and the occult understanding of the student, upon the quality of the tone of his life as it sounds forth in the inner world, upon the brilliance of the indwelling light, and upon his power in service.
663. Again, these criteria are so important that we will gain from tabulation.
664. Selection of students for the advanced school will be based upon:
a. The student’s inner comprehension
b. The student’s occult understanding (an not simply on mental development)
c. The quality of the tone of the student’s life as it sounds forth in the inner worlds
d. The brilliance of the indwelling light
e. The student’s power in service.
665. Again, clairvoyant investigation and confirmation will definitely be required.
666. There is no way to simply pass an academic examination and, then, pass to a higher grade. The right to pass is very much subjective though based upon exacting subjective criteria.
This suffices for today; tomorrow we will deal with the final division of this third point, the buildings of the school.
667. Each one of these little instructions is to be assimilated. The Tibetan is offering much information in a quite condensed manner. It is our task to elaborate as necessary that which He presents.
In dealing today with the subject of the buildings of the two types of occult schools, little can be said and only a general outline can be given. Climatic conditions and the desired size of the schools will greatly vary and the consequent plant will vary likewise......
668. There is room for the exercise of the creativity and intelligence of those concerned.
669. The Tibetan is faced with the difficulty of giving accurate indications without shackling the creativity and imagination of those responsible for the initial founding of the esoteric schools.
The buildings for the preparatory school will differ not so much from those of an ordinary college in the exoteric [Page 322] world.
670. Here we see a great deal of freedom possible. When it comes to the structure of the buildings for the advanced schools, more occult rigor may be required.
One rule only will be laid down—each student must of necessity have his own separated chamber.
671. Occult development is a very individual process. There can be no unwarranted mixing of energies and magnetisms. Each student is deeply responsible for his own progress. He must not complicate his always taxing problem by too close or intimate an association with the energies and forces of others.
The type of building matters not, provided these conditions are fulfilled. Each room must be non-communicating, save with the central corridor,
672. What occurs within the school must be evident to all. There can be no subterfuge or hidden contacts.
1. The Road is trodden in the full light of day, thrown upon the Path by Those Who know and lead. Naught can then be hidden, and at each turn upon that Road a man must face himself. (DINA I 583-584)
and must be in three divisions, necessarily small yet distinct.
673. In occultism, the factor of the trinity is always preserved.
One division will be given up to the student's life and study; another to the bath and the third will be the place for meditation containing the pictures of the Great Ones duly curtained.
674. The three divisions correlate with the three aspect of divinity:
a. The “place for meditation” corresponds to the first ray
b. The division “given up to the student’s life and study” corresponds to the second aspect
c. The bath, with its emphasis upon the purification of the physical vehicle, corresponds to the third aspect.
This third division is kept for the sole purpose of meditation and will contain little save the mat on which the student sits, a couch on which he will repose his physical vehicle during certain stated exercises and a small stool in front of the Master's pictures, on which will be found the incensor and a vase for floral tributes.
675. Let us tabulate the divisions within the third division:
a. The mat on which the student sits
b. A couch on which he will repose his physical vehicle
c. A small stool in front of the Master’s pictures. On the stool, there will be an incensor and a vase for floral tributes.
676. There is, thus ,a provision for the more normal types of meditation.
677. The method of purifying the chamber is given by means of the incensor.
678. The devotional faculties of the student are allowed expression through the vase for “floral tributes”. The “floral tribute” (perhaps utilizing the type of flowers associated with a particular Master or Masters), may be considered a method of attuning with the Master and invoking His presence.
679. It is also clear that provision is made for out-of-body experiences during which the physical body must be safely and comfortably in repose.
680. We see that the needs to sustain the inner life are few but distinct.
The resident teachers will reside with the students, the women taking charge of the women students, and the men residing with the male students.
681. The design is somewhat monastic and seems to ensure the segregation of the sexes. This was, we are told, the approach of the Buddha to His male monks and female nuns.
682. There seems to be a strict method of chaperoning. How many modern students of spirituality would submit to this?
683. We are speaking of the preparatory school. From the use of the words “resident teachers” we may assume that some of the teachers may not be residents of the school. These would be, one would think, adjunct faculty members.
684. In any case, if a teacher is a resident teacher, he or she will reside with the students of the same sex.
The Head of the school will reside alone in a detached house which will contain—besides the rooms in which he will live his private life—a reception room of small proportions for his work with individuals, and a larger room for joint concourses, besides a shrine room for the meeting of the united body of pupils.
685. Only the Head of the school resides alone. Presumably this gives him the necessary detachment to gain the perspective which he must have and allows him the necessary privacy for the intensive occult work he must perform.
686. His more official quarters are divided into three parts just as are the quarters of the students:
a. A reception room of small proportions for his work with individuals
b. A larger room for joint discourses
c. A shrine room for the meeting of the united body of pupils. This will have to be a relatively large room if it is to house all pupils simultaneously, for the student body of a preparatory school may be relatively large.
687. Again, the three rooms can be considered related to the three aspects, with the reception room correlating with the third ray, the room for joint discourses with the second and the shrine room with the first ray.
The buildings for the advanced schools, even though they concern us not intimately as yet, provide in their construction much of occult significance for those who have eyes to see.
688. The construction for the buildings of the advanced school is to be far more rigorously designed.
689. DK suggests that their symbolism may not be obvious.
690. The diagram below clarifies the following description.
The main feature in the occult advanced school will be the central temple of circular shape
691. The circle is the symbol of completeness and of synthesis, towards which the curriculum of the advanced school tends.
providing for each of the pupils (and you must remember that numerically they will not be large), a private shrine entered from the rear by a closed door and having a curtain between it and the large central shrine where the group meetings will be held.
692. We are not now speaking of the living quarters of the students in the advanced school, but of their individual, private shrine.
693. The only thing that separates the private shrines from the large central shrine room is a curtain, so although private, that which occurs within the private shines must not disturb any activity (or energetic ‘atmosphere’) within the larger shrine room.
This large central shrine will have a pavement whereon will be traced the triangle, and within the triangle the group will sit,
694. The triangle is the symbol of the soul and its consciousness. Fittingly, the true soul is the spiritual triad, direct contact with which is the objective of the more advanced students.
the three spaces outside the triangle having tables whereon will be found various symbols and a few of the fundamental books on symbols and some large parchments whereon the cosmic symbols will be portrayed.
695. The students are surrounded by documents which remind them of the macrocosm with which they are to be achieving some degree of direct contact.
696. We may wonder why, in this day and age, “parchments” are to be used. Perhaps the term “parchment” simply indicates a paper-like surface of larger than average dimensions on which important relations may be depicted in chart form.
697. The tables are largely given to texts on symbolism and to the depiction of cosmic symbols. We are reminded that meditation on symbols is one of the best ways of stimulating the intuition (i.e., accessing the buddhic plane).
698. We note from a study of the diagram that the numbers three, four, nine, twenty-four and twenty-seven and even twenty-eight are emphasized.
699. Three-ness suggests the soul, triad and threefold Monad.
700. Four suggests the fourfold personality which must be subdued and transformed; more occultly, the four suggests the four gates to Shamballa. Four also suggests the ancient problem of the “squaring of the circle” which may suggest the relationship between the four higher or Shamballic ethers and the spherical causal body.
701. Nine is the number of completion and suggests nine initiations which are possible to the human being. The human Creative Hierarchy is also, by one method of reckoning, the ninth, and so we are reminded of that family of Monads of which we, as human beings, are all a part.
702. Twenty-four is the number of Shamballa, and represents, among other things, the twenty-four hours of the day as well as the combination of the greater and lesser zodiacs. It would not be surprising if some enumeration concerning the head center also involved the number twenty-four. There are places for twenty four students depicted in the diagram and there are twenty-four private shrines.
As for the number twenty-seven, when the three teachers are added
to the twenty-four students, we arrive at this number. In the tenth of the ten
Seed Groups, twenty-seven is the requisite number. Twenty-seven is the
penultimate number found before twenty-eight, the number of the
704. We arrive at twenty-eight by adding the higher (and smaller) triangle to the number of smaller circles. The triangle above the three circles (standing for the Teachers) is as the threefold Monad hovering above the spiritual triad.
705. Twenty-eight represents the Master at the heart of the entire effort. It sums to the number ten (the perfect number) which is a one numerologically.
The advanced school is a
The colour of this shrine will be dependent on the ray which it represents.
707. Are we speaking of the large central shine or of the private student shrines?
708. Will the large central shrine have a particular, major color depending upon the principal ray of the school? Perhaps.
The curtains which separate will be in the ray colour also and each individual shrine curtain will carry the sign of the pupil's nativity—his sign, rising sign, and controlling planets.
709. We must proceed cautiously here. If the large central shrine has one particular color, the implication is that the curtains which separate the central shrine from the large central shrine will all be in that same color.
710. If in the section above we have been speaking of the private shrines, then the colors of the separating curtains could depend upon the soul ray of the student.
711. Perhaps we now can realize the very great importance of the rays and esoteric astrology in the process of spiritual development as conceived in relation to the future schools of occultism. Students are to be conceived not so much as personalities but as energy units. This is the impersonal way of viewing them; it their relationship to the larger whole that counts and this relationship can be understood by understanding their conditioning energies.
712. The curtains are obviously visible from the large central, circular shrine. The colors of the curtains will be, by one (and probably the most accurate) method of interpretation, all of the same color—the color of the major color expressed in the shrine room.
713. By another method of interpretation, the curtains would be of the colors of the soul rays of the students. Obviously, these will have to be ascertained and confirmed by the clairvoyant heads of the school. In fact, they will have been ascertained during a student’s tenure in a preparatory school.
714. When attempting to resolve this issue, we should think of Rule IX for Applicants which says: “Let but one colour blend them and their unity appear.” The probability is that all twenty-four separating curtains will be of the same colour as the colour of the central shrine. This would be the one blending colour.
715. With his rayological and astrological information constantly displayed, the student will be constantly be reminded of his potentials in the present incarnation and also in his liabilities—the tendencies which he must overcome.
716. Since the soul rays of the students in a particular school will be identical or complementary, we expect that the colors will be identical or complementary to the major color displayed on the curtains.
717. If the colors of the curtains reflected the student’s soul ray, there would be an interesting colour display seen from the central chamber, but this is less likely the case than that the color of all curtains would be identical.
718. It is interesting that the soul ray and personality ray of the students is not visible on the separating curtain, yet they are factors with which students must certainly deal. Yet the problem is solved by the symbolism upon his meditation mat.
719. The whole idea of a curtain rather than a door is of importance. A curtain suggests a veil (of identification) which must be transcended in order to reach the central shrine. “Let the group know there is no colour, only light and then let darkness take the place of light, hiding all difference, blotting out all form.”
720. It is clear that, symbolically, each student must penetrate a “veil” if he is to make his way into the central shrine.
These curtains will be the [Page 324] property of the pupil, as will the mat within the shrine which will carry the symbol of his ray, egoic and personality.
721. We see that the astrological factors are depicted on the separating curtain and the ray factors are found on the mat. They, thus, are, as it were, at right angles to each other.
722. We note that the astrological symbols are missing from the mat and the symbols for the soul and personality rays from the separating, colored curtain.
723. Certainly, achieving the correct relation between his soul and personality rays is the very foundation of his spiritual practice. The mat, so we may interpret, relates to this foundation.
724. If this is a meditation mat, it tells us something about the position in which students in such schools are expected to meditate. Today, some people meditate in chairs and find it sufficient. Apparently, this will not be the case in the advanced schools.
On the wall of the great circular passage will be found the signs of the zodiac, the four entrances standing for the four Maharajas.
725. These are major macrocosmic symbols. The zodiacal signs are not only individually important but important for all that transpires upon our planet and within our solar system.
726. As for the “four Maharajas” They are the great Agents of karma in our solar system. They connect our system to the Sirian Lipika Lords. The Purpose of the larger system (and the rules under which it and all beings within it function) is thus held ever before the eye of the students.
727. When we think of the four entrances to the major shrine we also think of the “Four Gates to Shamballa”. These is much head-center emphasis in this entire design.
A square wall will surround the whole, enclosing a garden which will be the care of the pupils themselves.
728. The unsolved mathematical problem—“the squaring of the circle”—is suggested; also, the position of Spirit within the square of the lower worlds and of personality.
729. The circle within the square is one way of representing the relationship between the Sun and the Moon—the solar and the lunar life through which the solar life must express. Obviously, the Sun is represented by the circle and the Moon by the square.
730. The garden suggests the students’ relationship to the plant kingdom and to the devas which are so instrumental in relation to that kingdom.
731. To work in the garden is also an act of ‘grounding’ the higher spiritual energies contacted and of contacting and assimilating both solar and planetary prana.
732. As well, the vegetable kingdom is ruled by Venus, which is a planet sacred to all students of occult meditation and development. We notice that the students do not have animals in proximity to the central shrine.
733. Whereas the plant kingdom is ruled by the sacred planet Venus, the animal kingdom is ruled by the non-sacred planet, Mars.
There will be but one entrance through this wall on the north side.
734. The one entrance in the north suggests the relationship to the opening at the top of the head through which spiritual energies flow into the energy system of the human being.
735. The North is highly sacred and mysterious and represents, fundamentally, Shamballa.
Outside will lie small buildings to house not more than three pupils, and a house wherein will reside the three instructors.
736. The structure of triangles is constantly emphasized. The students to share a particular house may be specifically chosen for the quality of interaction which will result. Perhaps some karmic relations will also be worked-through in this choice.
737. This time the instructors do not live with and supervise the students, who, by this time, can be trusted to supervise themselves.
738. The vital interplay of the three ‘Teachers’ of an advanced school is emphasized by the fact that they are to live together.
The Initiate Head will likewise have his private residence distinguished by a domed tower at one side.
739. The Initiate Head is further sequestered. It seems that, in one sense, He resides with the two other instructors and yet he also has his own private residence emphasizing his relation to both the three and to the one.
740. The domed tower represents the vault of heaven—the macrocosm--to which the Initiate Head, the instructors and all students must come into meaningful relationship.
This domed tower serves two purposes:—It is the place for astronomical and astrological instruction and will have the latest appliances of science for the study of the planets and of microcosmic life, and will also serve as a secure shelter for those pupils who can consciously leave their physical bodies and function elsewhere on the physical plane.
741. In the advanced school there is a strong macrocosmic emphasis. Astronomy (probably a very different thing in future centuries to what it is now) and astrology will be understood as intimately related. To study this relationship is to gain the clearest view of the relationship of man to the macrocosm—not only the solar macrocosm but the cosmic macrocosm.
742. We see that in the advanced school, it will be a matter of course to leave one’s body for various sanctioned purposes. We note the interesting idea that the one leaving his body is not functioning so much on the astral plane but on the physical plane. Will this signify etheric participation in world service? As well, one may leave one’s body not only to serve but to learn. In any case, protection is needed and it is provided.
743. Symbolically, those who leave the body purposefully and for any length of time are under the protection of the Initiate Head of the school, because the bodies are secured in a place related to his private residence.
This is all I can give as yet. Record, watch and await the hour when the ideal will materialize.
744. For whom is Master DK writing? If for students who were the first to read these instructions, He seems to be saying that some materialization of the ideas in relation to the advanced school could occur in their life time.
745. Or He could be writing for later readers such as ourselves or for those who will follow us, or for those who will be the reincarnated aspects of ourselves.
746. In any case, He is demanding of us a high state of alertness. It is as if the precipitating ideal can be noticed in the process of precipitation. Also, His injunction suggests that the matter of the materialization of the ideal is, to an extent, in hands greater than our own.
Our fourth point comes up for consideration today, and in its discussion I will give you somewhat concerning the preparatory occult school but little concerning the advanced.
747. There is so much interior work in the advanced school. It is both difficult to describe and intimately related to the individual process of the advanced students.
748. Again, that which is laid down must be considered general in nature. The nature of knowledge is constantly evolving and so that which students must know will also change and evolve as the centuries pass.
This fourth point is one anent the grades and classes.
4. The Grades and Classes.
We have, in an earlier letter, touched upon the curriculum of the preparatory schools and have seen that that curriculum deals much with the development of lower [Page 325] mind,
749. The cultivation of the lower mind, we remember, is not seen as an end in itself but as a foundation for the cultivation of the abstract mind and the intuition.
with the laying of the foundations upon which to build the later work, and with the formulation, the study, and the memorising of the theories and occult laws upon which the true occultist will later base his practical work.
750. Let us, for a moment, place emphasis upon the word “memorizing”. It is vital that students (especially in the preparatory school) know certain theories, laws, rules and mantrams “by heart”. They have a much better chance to assimilate the needed knowledge and transmute it into understanding if they memorise the necessary “theories and occult laws”.
751. While it sometimes seems “old fashioned” to use the memory in this way, it is strongly advised.
752. We are reminded that work in the preparatory school is, to a degree, theoretical. Work in the advanced school is work in the field of practical occultism.
We saw also that much that was taught was necessarily closely allied with the exoteric teaching of the world, and necessitated the school being in close touch with the centres of modern thought.
753. DK is reviewing for us the main points previously imparted.
754. The points reviewed are:
a. The cultivation of the concrete mind in the preparatory school
b. The laying of foundations in the preparatory school
c. The formulation, studying and memorizing of occult laws and theories in the preparatory school
d. And the necessity that the preparatory school be located near a center of modern thought, thus ensuring that what is taught in such a school is closely allied with the exoteric teaching of the world.
Today I seek to point out certain things that will be seen in the scheme of the student's work and to show the method whereby he is gradually led on until he is fit to pass on into the more advanced college.
755. Passage into the advanced college only occurs when there is fitness to do so. Passage is not based on “good luck” or caprice. The student must have proven his worthiness to pass on.
756. We note, again, the use of the word “college”, also in reference to the advanced school. Both these types of schools are colleges—harmonious gatherings of like-minded individuals pursuing a mutual purpose in common.
We will as usual divide our subject into three heads:—
a. The times of study.
b. The types of work.
c. The transformation of potential faculty into active powers through practice.
a. The times of study.
All the work of the school will be based upon an occult knowledge of times and seasons,
757. The seventh ray will be asserting itself with increasing potency as the Aquarian Age progresses. The schools which we are discussing are due to arise during the Aquarian Age.
758. In all truly esoteric training, a knowledge of esoteric cycles is of paramount importance. Increasingly, as the disciple approaches the Ashram, his life will come under law and order—occultly understood.
and two things will be carefully adhered to:—l. The school year will be divided into two halves, one half wherein the pupils are strenuously acquiring knowledge, that period being that in which the sun moves northward or the earlier half of the year, and a second half—separated from the earlier by an interval of six weeks—wherein he assimilates and puts into practice that which earlier was imparted.
759. The rhythm is sensible—acquisition and assimilation, with an intervening interlude for rest.
760. The Sun’s move northward is symbolically a movement into objectivity. The southward move suggests subjectivity, interiority and the opportunity to integrate and assimilate the knowledge acquired.
761. For schools in the Southern Hemisphere, it has been questioned whether the rhythm should be reversed, as the Sun’s move northward coincides with the winter months and the southward move with the summer (and hence, greater objectivity). From a planetary perspective however, it would seem that the northward and southward movements should be considered just as the Tibetan suggests. The two schools to be located in the Southern Hemisphere will have to work out their relation to the twofold rhythm of the school year.
During the earlier months of the year he goes through a drastic system of reception, of learning, of hard study, of accumulation of facts and of concrete knowledge.
The pace, even in the preparatory school, is intensive. The use of the word “drastic” tells much. The period of
reception is lived at a
He attends lectures, he wades through many books, he studies in the laboratory, and with the aid of the microscope and of the [Page 326] telescope he widens the range of his vision, and builds into his mental body a vast store of scientific data.
763. There is, we see, a strong emphasis upon the fifth ray. Given the idea of a “vast store”, we can see a planetary emphasis upon Jupiter as well as Mercury. The rigors of the task are supplied by Saturn and the experimental approach by Uranus.
764. The use of the words “microscope” and “telescope” have to be considered symbolic of the student’s approach to both the very small and the very large. Scientific apparatus has become extremely sophisticated and will be even moreso as the centuries pass. If the preparatory schools are to be well-equipped (by future standards) the equipment available to the students will far transcend our conventional ideas about “microscope” and “telescope”.
During the six weeks' vacation he is recommended to rest entirely from all mental effort save that associated with the practice of the imparted occult meditation.
765. We can see that refraining from all mental effort comes as a recommendation but not a demand or a requirement.
766. We all know that it is possible to overtax the brain cells. The very first set of letters in DINA I dealt with an individual (BSD) who entered the Tibetan’s group in a condition of brain fatigue. DK had to take this condition into consideration and refrained from assigning a rigorous program of meditation for BSD.
767. The best progress is made if the rhythms of the life process are understood and respected.
768. We can see that, though there is a rest period of six weeks, it is not really a long time. It is simply sufficient to provide the appropriate transition to the more subjective phase of the work.
769. We note that though there is a resting from all mental effort the “practice of the imparted occult meditation” continues as the meditative approach is paramount and no reduction in the quality of alignment can be permitted.
He mentally follows the cycle and goes into pralaya temporarily.
770. From the macrocosmic perspective, what is the function of pralaya? We can generalize from the “pralaya” suggested for students. Pralaya is an end and yet a beginning. It is an opportunity for the reception of a fresh subjective impulse as a prelude to renewed activity.
At the end of six weeks he returns to his work with the object in view of systematising the mass of information, of perfecting his comprehension of the facts earlier studied, of practicing that part of the occult lore permissible, with the object in view of becoming proficient and to discover his weak points.
771. Again, let us tabulate for the sake of clarity. When the student of the preparatory school returns after his vacation:
a. He systematizes the mass of information he has received during the earlier half of the year
b. He perfects his comprehension of the facts earlier studied
c. He practices that part of the occult lore permissible. We remember that in the advanced school great attention is paid to “occult lore”—i.e., presumably to the oral tradition which cannot be communicated in writing.
d. He becomes proficient in that which he practices
e. He attempts to discover his weak points
772. We might say that the really creative work begins with the second half of the year. The student has to do something of value with that which has been previously acquired.
773. We can compare this period of the year to the later lives in the total incarnational cycle when something of creative value must be done with all that has informed the human being during earlier cycles.
He writes during the "dark period" of the year the themes and essays, the books and pamphlets that will embody the product of the assimilated information.
774. This is work involving the throat center. This is an act of creative service. It is a law of life that we must always do something useful with that which we have received.
The best of these books will be published yearly by the college, for the use of the public. In this way he serves his time and generation and educates the race in the higher knowledge.
775. The use of the phrase, “serves his time”, is interesting. Often, this phrase is associated with being incarcerated—“serving time” in prison. In general, it can indicate a period of servitude under higher authority.
776. We gather that the “dark” part of the year is meant to see the use of time for service, and sharing knowledge is one of the principal ways that aspirants and disciples serve.
777. We can see that as the colleges publish themes, essays, books and pamphlets of value, the reputation of the colleges will be enhanced and, through the resultant increase in magnetism, the work will be assisted and will grow. The colleges will, in worldly terms and to the average citizen, prove their worth.
2. In exactly the same way his studies each month will be so arranged that the harder part (dealing with the higher mind) will be undertaken during the part of the month which is called the bright half, whilst the work of the dark half will be more given over to the things concerning lower mind and to an effort to hold the gain of the earlier weeks.
778. The pattern of procedure is clear. Penetration is achieved during the bright half of the month, along with the attempt to hold the ‘altitude’ of that penetration. Precipitation is the result, and during the “dark half” of the month, that which is precipitated is formalized—fixed and held in the lower mind.
779. We will recognize that this is antahkarana work on a monthly scale. The rhythm also relates for the fourfold meditation process: inhalation, higher interlude, exhalation, lower interlude.
Each day will be likewise divided into set times, the earlier hours being those in which the more abstract and occult data will be given, the latter part of the day being given over to a more practical type of work.
780. Even now we can follow the kind of rhythm suggested: penetrate in the early hours and deal practically (later in the day) with that which precipitates as a result of the polarized (i.e., held) penetration.
The basis of all occult growth is meditation, or those periods of silent gestation in which the soul grows in the silence.
781. Here is an excellent and thought-provoking definition of meditation.
782. To say that “the soul grows in silence” is the same as saying that consciousness and sensitivity grow in silence. Meditation is the primary means of nurturing the growth of consciousness.
Therefore, during the day there will be for every pupil in the school three periods of meditation—at sunrise, at , and at sunset.
783. These three could be called the three cardinal points of the day. The hour is another such cardinal point.
During the earlier part of the pupil's attendance at the school these periods will be for [Page 327] thirty minutes each. Later he will give one hour to the practice of occult meditation three times a day and during his final year he will be expected to give five hours a day to meditation.
784. We are not told for how many years a student practices meditation in thirty minute periods, hour-long periods or still longer periods. There must be flexibility in this matter. Those in charge must understand the student’s meditational needs and determine the length of meditation periods accordingly.
785. Five hours of meditation per day is not a small amount of time, yet it is small, perhaps, in comparison with the length of meditation which will be practiced in the advanced schools.
786. There may be occult significance to the number five. It is obviously associated with the fifth kingdom (of souls) and the planet Venus. Five is also a number deeply significant in relation to the initiation process.
When he can do this and get results he will be able to pass on into the advanced school. It is the great test and mark of readiness.
787. The student passes into the advanced school not on the basis of some conventional examination, but on the basis of the results he is achieving in meditation.
788. It will not be sufficient for the student simply to report on his results; the results must be seen clairvoyantly.
789. This requirement should be borne in mind by all those who contribute to the founding of the preparatory schools. The meditation demands become increasingly stringent and practical results are expected.
The hours of the school will begin with sunrise and end with sunset.
The geographical latitude of the schools will make the length of
days variable. In
791. In other areas, the seasonal changes in the length of days are much more moderate.
After the sun sets, and for one hour after each of the other two periods of meditation, the pupil is permitted to relax, take his meals and recreate himself.
792. Notice the strict disciplining. We are talking about permission.
Meditation occurs at a
All pupils will be required to retire to rest at night by ten o 'clock,
794. We recall that classes are held on the inner planes between the hours of and . It would seem that students will necessarily be involved in these inner plane classes.
after thirty minutes of careful revision of the day's work and the filling in of certain charts that go to the completion of his record.
795. The evening review is of considerable length, which says something of its importance.
796. We do not know about the nature of these “certain charts”, but we can imagine that they have to do with the student’s ability to notice signs of improvement or back-sliding. They may also document certain inner events, impressions and sensed stimulations.
The length of a pupil's stay in the school depends entirely upon the progress made, the inner powers of assimilation and the outer life of service.
797. The program is flexible and ‘graduation’ depends upon merit. It is impossible to create a rigid system of progression however much rigid discipline may be necessary under most circumstances.
798. It is clear that (given the rigors of the school process and the length of time which may be necessary for completion) any student entering a preparatory school must be very highly motivated or the necessary persistence may be lacking.
799. Perhaps we are gathering a sense of the very great responsibility which rests upon the faculties of both kinds of schools. They are meant to be spiritual guides of a very high order and so much of the students’ spiritual welfare depends upon their discernment and their skill-in-action.
It depends therefore upon the point in evolution at which he enters the school. Those just entering the Path of Probation will be there for five to seven years and on occasion even longer;
800. These are students who may enter—
a. Before having taken the first initiation
b. Or before the midway point between the first and second initiation, after which point the stage of Accepted Discipleship is more likely.
801. When does the Path of Probation occur? There are different ways to answer this question, but one way is to consider the period immediately before the first initiation and following it, until the stage of Accepted Discipleship is reached.
802. If a student must stay somewhat longer than seven years, then how much longer; we do not know. Nine years? Eleven years?
803. The, at least, approximate point in evolution of those entering the schools will certainly be accurately assessed.
804. Once a disciple becomes a pledged disciple, he enters a new phase on the Path of Probation, and accepted disciples are still considered pledged disciples.
those who are old disciples and those who have taken initiation in earlier lives will be there but a brief time, pushing rapidly through the curriculum and simply learning to produce for use the knowledge earlier stored.
805. Spiritual rank must be carefully assessed without any falling into normal unenlightened reactions such as envy or jealousy.
806. What does DK mean when He speaks of those “who have taken initiation in earlier lives”? He will not mean the third initiation. Does He mean only the first or can He be referring to both the first and second initiations? The latter option is the likelihood.
807. If we think carefully, it would take a fairly experienced disciple to push “rapidly through the curriculum”—perhaps a person who has lived a few lives of discipleship after having taking the first initiation or one who has actually taken the second degree.
808. We learn that knowledge stored must be “produced for use”. This is one of the functions of the work undertaken during the dark half of the year. It is also the function of the preparatory school in relation to those disciples who have stored up a great deal of esoteric knowledge in earlier incarnations.
809. If we read carefully, we seem to have been given the hint that not all those who enter the preparatory school have taken the first initiation, even though they may hover around that point.
810. Yet it would seem (judging from the requirements for entry) that everyone who enters a preparatory school will have fulfilled the following requirements which suggest the achievement of the first initiation:
a. They will love their fellow human beings, and this they will have proven by the service rendered even before applying to the school
b. They will seek to discipline their lives to create greater beauty in their life expression.