Commentary on Rule I for Applicants


Rule I:

Let the disciple search within the heart's deep cave.  If there the fire burns bright, warming his brother yet heating not himself, the hour has come for making application to stand before the door.

The sentences:

A.                 Let the disciple search within the heart's deep cave.

1.                  In the largest sense, the “heart’s deep cave” is the sum-total of one’s reincarnational past.

2.                  It is the disciple’s entire contents of consciousness, including not only contents which are recent and, therefore, more easily accessible, but contents which are long forgotten, separated from the disciple’s conscious mind by Lethe, “the river of forgetfulness”.

3.                  The search within the “heart’s deep cave” demands an exploration of that which the three lower permanent atoms (physical and astral permanent atoms and mental-unit) have stored over many life cycles.

4.                  The Buddha, immediately before his enlightenment, and under the Bodhi Tree, conducted a most thorough search, and the contents of all his previous human lives (hundreds, according to legend, and a few others in the animal kingdom) were revealed to Him sequentially, like pearls on a string.

5.                  The greater part of these memories are inaccessible to the average disciple as the details of previous incarnations cannot be accurately recalled. Often, when there is recollection, it is inaccurate and amplified by contents from the imagination and astral body. Psychism, in this respect, and at this present time, is notoriously unreliable.

6.                  For practical purposes, the contents of this “cave” consist of all recollectable memories and present motivations.

7.                  For practical purposes, the disciple is being asked to examine the nature of his gross and subtle energy-system—its patterns, tendencies and impulses.

8.                  Especially, he is being asked to see into the nature of his desires—to see whether these are still selfish or, increasingly, tending towards selflessness.

9.                  From another perspective, we might say that the “heart’s deep cave” is the united influence of two chakras—the solar plexus and the heart chakras, and the dimensions of the human energy system to which they give entrance.

10.              The solar plexus is a symbol for the entire personality nature. It is ruled by Mars, Neptune and has a strong relation to the Moon.

11.              The heart chakra is a symbol for the soul. It is ruled by the Sun, Jupiter and is solar in its nature.

12.              Not only is personality negativity discovered in this search, but that which is deeply and intrinsically positive.

13.              The heart center is twelvefold, having twelve petals or energy vortices.

14.              The deepest “desires of the heart” are rooted in the soul and ultimately in the spirit—both of which are as higher heart centers. The so-called “soul body” (the egoic lotus) is, from the “petal” perspective, twelvefold, and there is reason for thinking that the monad (spirit) located on the sixth or second plane of our systemic planes (depending on the way of counting) is also related to the number twelve, since it is has its “home” within the Sun—a great heart center.

15.              When looking within the “heart’s deep cave”, one is searching, ultimately, for the root of Love, and the search will take us through our heart to the soul/Egoic Lotus/Solar Angel, to the monad, to the planetary heart center (Hierarchy), to the Christ (the Heart of Hierarchy), to Shamballa, and onward to the solar heart center and beyond. (cf. Esoteric Astrology, 47 for some hints)

16.              The “heart’s deep cave”, therefore, has passages which lead downward to the depths of material impulse, and upward, endlessly, along a line of solar ‘hearts’ to the very “Heart of the Sun”, itself—the soul nature of the Solar Logos (our solar systemic god).

17.              Practically speaking, one simply discovers the flow of Love.

18.              Only a disciple, focussed in the mind “held steady in the light” and, thus, inspired by the light of the soul, will have the persistence to conduct a thorough search. He will diligently (and with subtle perception of his own internal states of consciousness) discover what he really desires, and will bring to light (via Pluto—a good planetary companion for this search) hidden motivations which may not be in line with the impulses of the loving soul.

19.              He will also discover that Love is a great impersonal energy, which is not at all rooted in the personal life.

20.              This first sentence is another way of introducing the injunction of the Delphic Oracle—“Know thyself”.


B.                 If there the fire burns bright, warming his brother yet heating not himself,

1.                  Many fires are burning within the energy system of the human being.

2.                  Fire and motion are synonymous terms.

3.                  The various “fires” are different patterns of motion, characterized by different frequencies and varying dynamic relationships between the ‘moving parts’ of any system.

4.                  The fires (motions), which in their aggregate constitute the lower personal self are called in the Tibetan’s Teaching, “Fire by Friction”.

5.                  Fire by Friction is what might be called the most “external” fire.

6.                  It arises through the abrasive contact of peripheries.

7.                  In the Teaching, Fire by Friction is associated with “heat” rather than “warmth”—though, naturally, there is no hard and fast line between these two. They are both forms of excitation.

8.                  “Heat”, from one perspective, is vibratory stimulation—an increase in frequency without, necessarily, an enhancement of relationship.

9.                  Warmth (considered occultly) is not only an increase in frequency, but an enhancement and harmonization of relationship.

10.              “Heat” (as here considered) stimulates that which is eternal to the entity—its “lunar” instrument.

11.              “Warmth” draws forth the interior nature (soul) within the entity, and brings an entity into enhanced relationship with another entity or with many such.

12.              When a disciple or aspirant is over-stimulated, it is as a result of too much “heat”.

13.              When that disciple is experiencing an enhancement of soul-infusion, the “warmth” of Solar Fire is at work. This is especially the case for those whose soul or monadic nature is upon the second Ray of Love Wisdom, but since the soul is love, it is more or less true for all ray types.

14.              The “fire” which is to burn bright—“there” in the heart chakra—is Solar Fire, and not Fire by Friction.

15.              The Rule asks us to discover if our heart center is being animated by the “warmth” of Solar Fire. The word “animated” is important, because “anima” means the soul.

16.              If this animation by warmth is in process, it would mean that a degree of soul-infusion had occurred; that heart energy was superceding the desirous energy of the solar plexus center.

17.              If the “fire” of the heart is “burning bright”, it is not an intermittent flame. This Solar Fire would burn with relative consistency, becoming always, with greater soul infusion, ever more consistent.

18.              The disciple, however, often realizes, “Sometimes I love; sometimes I do not”. This is caused by the inconsistency of the fire of the heart. That higher fire must supercede the lower fire of the solar plexus.

19.              For a long time these two centers are at war, each seeking a greater share of the available energy. The disciple passing through this phase of energy-contention is often distressed both physically and psychologically by incessant fluctuation—there is no “firm ground”

20.              At length the heart chakra triumphs, which is to say that the soul triumphs ‘over’ (and through) the personality, and the disciple becomes the compassionate one instead of the passionate one. In general terms, the second Ray of Love-Wisdom supersedes the sixth Ray of Idealism and Devotion.

21.              This simple requirement (that the “fire burns bright”) is the basis of all truly spiritual growth.

22.              The Hierarchy is the “Hierarchy of Love”, and there is no way into that Hierarchy except through real and impersonal/supra-personal Love (for they are the same).

23.              When one warms one’s brother, one draws forth all that is good in him. Warming evokes the soul.

24.              When one heats oneself, one is really heating one’s not-self. One is stimulating, and probably over-stimulating, one’s “lunar” nature—consisting of the physical, astral and mental elemental lives—the “Lunar Lords” within us.

25.              If these Lunar Lords become too agitated (which is what they seem to ‘want’ to do), they “kill the flickering impulses of the soul”; they occultly repulse the higher soul vibration. A cloud appears before the “Sun”.

26.              Many aspirants and disciples get overexcited in the personal sense. They are amazed by the new knowledge available to them, so their mental elemental becomes over-stimulated.

27.              They burn with desire or aspiration to reach a higher state, and fail to consider the welfare of those around them. Their astral/emotional elemental becomes over-stimulated.

28.              Various fires are racing through their etheric-physical mechanism, which gets “high’ on its own intensity and occultly rejects the energies of the soul.

29.              Thus, in this “heating” of themselves, they fall victim to illusion (mental), glamor (emotional) and maya (etheric-physical).

30.              This can happen to groups as well as to individuals; the analogy holds good. If fact, many disciples, individually, have overcome illusion-glamor-maya, but the groups to which they belong have not, and their behavior within groups does not measure up to as high a standard as when they function outside the group context. Thus, an area for growth is indicated.

31.              This “heating” is in the nature of a disturbance to the process of soul-infusion. The ‘heated one’ is often very pleased with himself, and thinks he is making spiritual progress. But, in fact, he is simply preoccupied with lunar energies, and is occultly deflecting, through an intensity of lower vibration, the higher and subtler vibrations which could draw the personality nearer the Solar Source (the supervising Solar Angel)

32.              It is also possible to heat one’s brother instead of warming him.

33.              Every time we stimulate a brother’s outer nature—just his body, just his emotions, just his mind, or just all three—we heat him and fail to reach his soul.

“Rule I.  Enter thy brother's heart and see his woe.  Then speak.  Let the words spoken convey to him the potent force he needs to loose his chains.  Yet loose them not thyself.  Thine is the work to speak with understanding.  The force received by him will aid him in his work.

Rule II.  Enter thy brother's mind and read his thoughts, but only when thy thoughts are pure.  Then think.  Let the thoughts thus created enter thy brother's mind and blend with his.  Yet keep detached thyself, for none have the right to sway a brother's mind.  The only right there is, will make him say:  "He loves.  He standeth by.  He knows.  He thinks with me and I am strong to do the right."  Learn thus to speak.  Learn thus to think.

Rule III.  Blend with thy brother's soul and know him as he is.  Only upon the plane of soul can this be done.  Elsewhere the blending feeds the fuel of his lower life.  Then focus on the plan.  Thus will he see the part that he and you and all men play.  Thus will he enter into life and know the work accomplished.”
(TWM 320)

34.              We have to be careful to think towards our brother, feel towards our brother, act towards our brother and speak to our brother in such a way that our energy travels “across the desert, over all the seas and through the fires which separate [him] from the veiled and hidden door” (Rules III for Applicants. Thus, we reach his soul (which, in effect, is our soul, and, in fact, the soul)

35.              This is not easy, and often for reasons of our own, we wish to stimulate one part or another of our brother, and not reach him as a soul. Our own personal nature wants this, because when we stimulate the personality of our brother, our own personality elementals are stimulated—and this they relish.

36.              If we warm our brothers with the outflow of soul energy, through the heart, especially, and also through other chakras (especially those above the diaphragm), we will, by reflex, find ourselves “warmed”.

37.              If we heat our brothers, before long we will in our outer natures, likewise, be heated. In fact, we could not heat our brother if we were not, ourselves heated. With this exception, however—that sometimes soul energy flowing towards a brother is intercepted by his lunar nature, and thus, temporarily, causes heat. Thus the Masters, Themselves, have to be careful not to come to close to the unprepared, lest the lesser ones become damaged by an ‘excess of benevolent proximity’. However, this temporary misappropriation of soul energy will be overcome by persistent warming. “Love conquers all”.


C.                 …the hour has come for making application to stand before the door

  1.      That “hour” is a period of time reached after many lives of preparation.

2.                  The “hour” represents a inner state of patterned energy-relationship, or “point of tension” achieved and sustained.

3.                  The “hour” has not arrived if we simply, now and then, touch a certain high point of tension which we cannot sustain.

4.                  A “point of tension” is called by the Tibetan, “focussed immovable will”

5.                  “The esoteric significance of tension (as far as I can explain it by limiting words) is ‘focussed immovable Will.’  Right tension is the identification of brain and soul with the will aspect, and the preservation of that identification—unchanged and immovable—no matter what the circumstances and the difficulties.” (Rays and the Initiations—R&I-45)

6.                  “Application” is not a formal request or a demand for the accolade of initiation. “Application” is a serious intention to achieve the required energy-pattern within one’s personality.

7.                  The “application” (as intention) may be registered by the inner watching disciple who, from the inner planes, guides the disciple upon the outer plane. The “application” will, also be registered by the Master—when it is of sufficient intensity and constancy.

8.                  Thus, application is not accepted until the required energy-pattern is not only sustained, but tested for its sustainability.

9.                  A triple personality in a sufficiently high state of frequency and of inner-harmony is, in itself, an application. Thus, in our personality vehicles, we become a living, sustained application to higher energy contacts. We become in fact, an invocation—not by what we say, but by what we are.

10.              To “stand” before the door of initiation, is not the same thing as to “sit” before the door—though to a degree, it depends on ray types. First ray types are more given to standing. Second ray types “sit for enlightenment” as did the Buddha under the Bodhi Tree.

11.              Nevertheless, all of us, regardless of ray type must learn to take our stand. By standing we align ourselves with spiritual will—to some extent at least, for true spiritual will is profound and emanates from sources even higher than the normal soul focus.

12.              We learn to “stand on principle” and will not be moved from off the place whereon we stand.

13.              We also “stand and wait”, for we cannot break through the door of initiation until our energy system is synchronized with that frequency which lies on the other side of the door.

14.              The “door” itself, as we will study in the more advanced Rules, is a subtle  electrical field which does not allow the passage through of that which is not harmonious, attuned and very similar to that which lies beyond the door.

15.              The standing before the door, shows that we can willfully and willingly sustain the point of tension achieved before being admitted.

16.              By standing in the right spiritual posture, we are submitting ourselves to the “test of time” (Saturn). No one can enter who does not abide in the correct energy state for the requisite amount of time. What that amount is, is probably different in the case of each individual, and much will depend upon the astrological configurations of the applicant. If the astrology is not right, he cannot pass. Thus it is, that many are, technically, initiate before they are initiated.

17.              So, perhaps, one has to be willing to remain an applicant for a long time. As long as it takes to prove oneself as fit for the expansion of consciousness and the heightening of energy which lies beyond the repelling energy-field we call the “Door of Initiation”.


D.                 When love for all beings, irrespective of who they may be, is beginning to be a realised fact in the heart of a disciple, and yet nevertheless love for himself exists not, then comes the indication that he is nearing the Portal of Initiation, and may make the necessary preliminary pledges.

1.                  Right here, we can see that this Rule does not only apply to the first initiation (the Birth of the Christ in the Heart) but even to the third (the real first initiation), the Transfiguration.

2.                  The only word that makes this Rule applicable to the first initiation is the word “beginning”.

3.                  “Love for all beings irrespective of who they may be” will never come from the personality itself—the personality with all its likes and dislikes, its affinities and disinclinations.

4.                  One can see how very demanding is this very first Rule, and how “Christ like” one must be to fulfill it completely—so that love for all beings is a realized fact in the heart of the disciples. So far, however, we are only asked for a beginning, which, for most of us, is more attainable.

5.                  To have such love, we must have transcended kama-manas (desire-mind). Our love becomes an impersonal love or a supra-personal love. It has nothing to do with the evident qualities of the one who is loved. To achieve such love constitutes an important test for all of us.

6.                  I will love you, not because of what you are or who you are, but for the very reason that you are. You are worthy of being loved simply because you exist.

7.                  Please note how inclusive is the word “all”—“all beings”. It means, “with no exceptions”. This includes persons and beings who, according to their qualities, may be repulsive. We note, in this respect, that St. Francis, who was clearly an arhat, renunciant, initiate of the fourth degree, embraced the leper, doing , for the sake of soul, that his personality found repugnant.

8.                  The leper symbolizes all that is “untouchable” With this word, we are reminded of the Indian Caste System, classifying some human beings as “untouchable” This lowest class is the fourth caste, and when an initiate strives for the fourth initiation, he must meet with love all that is “untouchable”, until he, in a profound occult reversal, becomes untouchable himself. He cannot be touched by the lunar worlds and no longer needs to incarnate. “Let the group know that life is one, and naught can ever take or touch that Life” (Rule VI for Disciples and Initiates)

9.                  This love must become a “realized fact”. Theory will not do. The disciple must know for himself, and see for himself, factually, that such love is alive within his heart. No one can tell you it is so. Each must discover it for himself.

10.              We become, then, a “living heart”. We achieve “heart realization”. We are then aligned with the “Doctrine of the Heart” and not only with the “Doctrine of the Eye”. The first of these is related to unitive consciousness. The second is still dualistic.

11.              We realize through the sentence above that the true portal of initiation is only approached through love. We may think we are approaching that portal through intensified personal will or through aspiration, or through much self-discipline (all of these, good at the right time and place), but only through love is the approach real. This we must get through our sometimes thick heads!

12.              St. Paul said it, and I will simply paraphrase: “If we don’t have love, it doesn’t make any difference what other abilities, qualities and powers we have—for they are as nothing compared to love” Again, this is an experience we must have (and I am sure that many, if not all of us, have at times gathered the sense of this in our hearts—at our highest moments). Love is the key to abundant life. Love, and love alone, opens the door. In this solar system, all other qualities (though indispensable in their own way) are secondary.

13.              Thus, the initiate of the Great White Lodge, no matter what his ray type, loves. The other lodge can be approached through intellect and separatism, but who want to?

14.              If, however, love for myself exists not, do I hate myself, do I despise myself? No. We have to understand carefully what is meant here. What is really being said is that ‘love for my not-self exists not’. This means that I do not inordinately love my lunar vehicles. Yes, I respect them. I have gratitude for them. And in a larger way, I do, indeed, love them in their proper place and function, but I place the love of the true Self, the soul/spirit, first.

15.              So many of us, at times, love our personality too much and put its demands before the demands of the soul. This is natural in the course of evolution, but one day we have to outgrow this ancient habit of loving the lesser more than the greater.

16.              When one is harmless (having “perfect poise, a completed point of view and divine understanding”), all things are seen in right proportion, illusion, glamor and maya disappear, and first things come first.

17.              Under the Law of Repulse (the Fourth Law of the Soul) we must learn to repulse the personality for the sake of the love of the soul, but then, in the full flow of soul love, we regather the repulsed personality, and bring it into the sphere of soul influence so that it becomes an excellent instrument of the soul.

18.              We cannot reach this point, however, if “love for himself” is initially too strong. This is what the text is suggesting. We put the Self/Soul/Spirit first, , loving it most, and the “not-Self” (so often wrongly called the “Self”) second.

19.              A selfish man is one who loves the not-Self more than the true Self/Soul/Spirit, mistakenly thinking that the not-Self is the Self.

20.              A pledge is a promise, above all, to ‘ones-Self’; to the Solar Angel, and ultimately to the Master.

21.              We live in a world of fluctuation; it is a lunar world of inconstancy. Principle is not easily sustained.

22.              But we are trying to become as “Suns”—centers of sustained radiance.

23.              Pledges, promises, vows, oaths, commitments—keep us constant. We begin to imitate the Sun (in its sustained, rhythmic pulsations). It is said that the “Sun always shines”. We attempt to emulate this state.

24.              Initiation is not for those who will weaken and give way at the first test. The lunar wheel is turning in the opposite direction to the wheel of love and life. One must be able to withstand this rending friction.

25.              Through the pledge we strengthen ourselves so we can, indeed, withstand the counterforce. And the counterforce will become stronger, in our experience, the moment we take our stand and make our pledge.

26.              In a group of this nature, all should be what is called “accepting disciples” moving towards making a significant pledge to the soul, the group soul, to the Master and to the Hierarchy as a whole with Christ at its heart.

27.              We are in process of becoming “pledged disciples”. Some already are, but if you are, you will know. It is not the business of others.

28.              No one can pass through the portal of initiation who has not “made his pledge” and kept it.

29.              What will be the nature of your pledge? That will be up to you and your Solar Angel. No one can tell you what it should be. But all pledges have in them the intention of unwavering commitment to the higher values and energies.

30.              There is Solar Principle in life and a Lunar Principle. Both are indispensable. We are, however, reaching the point in our development when we are learning about the Solar Principle and how to live according to its nature. Only thus can the Lunar Principle be, at length, fulfilled.

31.              The preliminary pledges are a kind of “warm-up” or rehearsal for the far more demanding vows and oaths that one must keep after initiation.


E.                  These are necessitated before his Master hands in his name as a candidate for initiation.

1.                  All progress through the ranks of Hierarchy is supervised.

2.                  The soul/Solar Angel has ‘us’ (the little, imbedded human soul) under supervision for many life-times (though not for all lifetimes—not until we become, shall we say, ‘spiritually interesting’ to that Angel.)

3.                  The Master, through the agency of His inner assistants—advanced disciples working on the inner planes—keeps the aspirant/disciple under supervision.

4.                  The Master, too, may look in now and then. We have been told—and it should humble us a bit—once every three hundred years or so.

“The ‘cycles of interest,’ or those periods in which the Masters pay close attention to the quality aspect of mankind, are also being speeded up; the "gauging" process will take place now every three hundred years, instead of every one thousand years, as has been the case until 1575 A.D.” (DINA II, 335)

5.                  What are the criteria which the Master uses to gauge our readiness? Well, some of them have been given in this Rule and its explanatory text. Also, we must not forget our own usefulness. The Master does not recommend an elevation of our spiritual frequency which initiation will confer, unless we can be spiritually useful in service to our fellow human beings. This should give us pause, as we ask ourselves, “In what ways, and to whom, am I really spiritually useful”?

6.                  If one proceeds in cultivating the necessary trinity of Meditation, Study and Service, one will become, increasingly, spiritually useful.


F.                  If he cares not for the suffering and pain of the lower self,….

1.                  There are four “D’s” we all must learn and apply: Discipline, Dispassion, Detachment, Decentralization. Some might add Discrimination.

2.                  Perhaps each of these first four could be assigned to all vehicles of the personality and to the personality itself, but one way of reasonable arrangement is as follows: a) Discipline, for the etheric-physical nature; b) Dispassion, for the emotional nature; c) Detachment and Discrimination for the mental nature; and d) Decentralization, for the personality as a whole.

3.                  In order to carry out the implications of this phrase, the human soul must dis-identify from the not-self (the lunar vehicles) and be strongly identified with and even as the Soul/Spirit.

4.                  One then has achieved what might be called ‘spiritual objectivity’. The not-Self is treated as what it really is—not the Self. It becomes one’s instrument, and one becomes willing to use that instrument in order to achieve whatever must be achieved.

5.                  The instrument should be kept in good shape, yes, but if the instrument undergoes stress, strain and even destruction, the true Self is not, essentially, touched thereby.

6.                  If one is to “care not for the suffering and pain of the lower self” there must be something else about which one cares very much, extremely much.

7.                  The intensity of caring for and about the spiritual and divine, will neutralizes the usual, habitual caring about the not-Self.

8.                  The secret to this intensified higher caring is the achievement of an even-heightening point of tension.

9.                  Perhaps every day we should remind ourselves of who we really are. It is so easy to forget and to fall back into the numbness of habitual consciousness.

10.              Sankaracarya said that the moss grows over the surface of the pond every day, unless, with a stick, we push it back—every day. You can interpret the analogy in terms of the Self, consciousness and the Great Maya to which consciousness falls victim—unless unusual caution and attentiveness is exerted.

11.              Thus, daily, we remind ourselves that we are not the body, not the emotional states, and not the mind. What is left is what we are—the Observer. Ultimately, with even further dis-identifications, we find that the Observer is really the indestructible Spirit.

12.              In summary, in order not to care, one does not struggle not to care; one strives, through substitution, to care about something higher, even more than one cares about the very familiar not-Self.


G.                 …if it is immaterial to him whether happiness comes his way or not,

1.                  How do you define happiness for yourself?

2.                  Happiness, in the large sense, is highly desirable, but analysis and discrimination are needed.

3.                  In occultism, the specialized definition of happiness is the satisfaction and contentment of the lower personal self.

4.                  Joy is the natural state of the soul.

5.                  Bliss is the natural state of the spirit.

6.                  The happiness discussed in the text of this Rule refers to the satisfaction and contentment of the threefold personality nature.

7.                  An advancing disciple could find himself ‘happy’ in his personality nature, yet profoundly ‘unhappy’ spiritually. The reverse is also true.

8.                  The advancing disciple (now a candidate for initiation) does not desire the usual satisfactions and contentments more than the higher joys of soul life.

9.                  The wheel turns in two directions—the wheel of form and the wheel of soul. The disciple is torn by these two motions, yet is able to hold his soul-joy or ‘happiness’ in the face of what would normally be called the unhappiness of the personality. I think the Dalai Lama is most adept at this dual consciousness.

10.              Note the word “immaterial”—“if it is immaterial to him whether happiness comes his way or not”. The candidate has realized the insubstantiality of the world of form and its satisfactions. These lower worlds are no longer real to him in the usual sense. He does not expend his precious desire energy on lesser things.

11.              He has achieved impersonality with respect to his personality.

“Impersonality is possible only to the disciple who knows truly how to love, and to him who sees life and its phantasmagoria (including all associated persons) in the light of the Spiritual Triad.” (R&I, 209)

12.              The greatest sages of the world want humanity to be “happy”, but by this term, they understand something entirely different than what is usually understood. They promote the integrated “happiness” of all three periodical vehicles—Personality, Soul and Spirit—the union of happiness, joy and bliss.

13.              The only way to this integrated happiness is by the temporary renunciation of conventional approaches to happiness. This is achieved through disidentification followed by re-identification. It demands a big change in who we think we are.


H.                 …if the sole purpose of his life is to serve and save the world,…

1.                  Again a demanding phrase. It is eliminative of all lesser purposes.

2.                  Note the phonic identity of “sole” and “soul”—the isolatedly unitive solar principle is here indicated.

3.                  This phrase within the text aims precisely at developing the qualities of the last two signs of the zodiac—Aquarius, producing the World Server, and Pisces, producing the World Savior.

4.                  This kind of (sole) purpose cannot be imposed upon oneself. It arises only after one has discovered, through long reincarnational experience and travail, that all other purposes are worthless—relatively.

5.                  Such a purpose is what motivates and animates the members of the Spiritual Hierarchy of our planet. In cultivating this purpose, until it becomes dominating and eventually “sole”, we are emulating our elder Brothers and Sisters.

6.                  So, then, let us subject our desires and “purposes” to scrutiny. Is our “sole purpose” to serve and save the world? Within our nature, what other purposes compete with this great purpose? How do we eliminate the lesser purposes, so that this admirable “sole purpose” remains? Each will have to answer for himself or herself.

7.                  Of course, we are not here enjoined to develop a morbid “savior complex”—exalting ourselves and our own importance as we run around trying to “serve” and “save” everyone, whether or not they want to be served and saved. Almost certainly we would do more damage than good, feeding nothing but a false and prideful image of ourselves, cloaked by false humility. The “Messiah Complex” in the field of religions is a great second ray glamor. The “Messiah Complex” in the field of politics is, equally, a glamor of the first ray.

8.                  No, a real skill in action is required if one wants to be a true server and savior. The Law of Service in Esoteric Psychology Vol. II (p. 118), is definitely worth re-reading, or reading for the first time. It sets things straight, tearing away the veils of illusion with which we comfort our own little egos as we, earnestly and diligently serve no one but ourselves.

9.                  Perhaps the creative imagination can come to our aid as we seek to develop this “sole motivation”. The glory of the Divine Plan can be envisioned, and the attempt to do so will cause lesser purposes (which do not lead to that consummate glory) to drop away.

10.              If we wish to stop desiring the lesser, we must see, with clarity, the possibility of the greater—and feel its presence by faith. “Faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things unseen”. St. Paul (a very intellectual man) knew what he was talking about here, as he made the transition into the realm of Love at the third degree.


I.                    …and if his brother’s need is for him of greater moment than his own,

1.                  Venus, Jupiter, and Neptune have done their work. We should not forget Saturn, Uranus and Pluto.

2.                  The ring-pass-not has expanded.

3.                  When asked, “Who am I”, it becomes impossible to give a personal answer. The ring-pass-not no longer confines the sense of being.

4.                  Who is my brother? Surely, not another. My brother is my very Self. At least such is the realization that comes when the heart opens and the usual egoism falls away. The planets Venus, Jupiter and Neptune are particularly associated with the heart center. Reasons can be found for this. Can you find them?

5.                  We have just passed through the Pisces Full Moon. In Pisces, the “Me first” of Aries is at last, and irrevocably changed, into “You first”. Self-effacement is achieved—an interesting term. The “face” reveals one’s identity. What is one’s identity when on no longer has a “face”—in the personal sense?

6.                  Who is a friend? Pythagoras answered that a “friend is another self”. This is a high Geminian perception.

7.                  If one realizes that one is one’s brother, it becomes possible to fulfill this phrase.

8.                  It is the heart that must feel that one is one’s brother.


J.                   …then the fire of love is irradiating his being and the world can warm itself at his feet.

1.                  This is the radiation which we seek, with is inevitably accompanying magnetism. Whoever radiates in this manner, is inevitably magnetic in the soul sense, and can wield the Law of Magnetic Impulse (the Second Law of the Soul) (see EP II)

2.                  One becomes a “Sun-Heart”.

3.                  This state of being calls to the soul in others and uplifts them.

4.                  What are the “feet”? The “feet” represent the lowest level of accomplishment of the one towards whom we aspire.

5.                  In the Gayatri—as we salute the Sun/Solar Logos, we journey to His “sacred feet”. Perhaps we achieve this, to some small extent, at the third initiation—the first solar initiation. And as we progress, we work our way up through the various chakras of the Great Being.

6.                  The Solar Angel is an initiate of all degrees. Long ago Solar Angels were human—in another kalpa altogether. We seek to become as they are now, and to reach the place whereon they stand. We are, in a sense, journeying to the “feet” of the Solar Angel Who for so many millions of years has supervised our progress (the progress of the human soul) in form.

7.                  All progress is made this way. There are some who are journeying to our feet. “Some move ahead, he follows after. Some move behind; he sets the pace” (Rules of the Road III)

8.                  Again, we have the word “warm”—such an important word in this first Rule, and in general for all who would radiate the light and love of the soul.

9.                  In a way, the candidate has become a representative of the Solar Angel and of the Solar Force. The energy of “warmth” flows through him. He becomes the warming, cheerful fire dancing in the hearth—warming the traveler who has come in from the dark and the cold. Do we want to be this for other people? If we fulfill these Rules, this is what we will become.


K.                This love has to be a practical, tested manifestation, and not just a theory, nor simply an impractical ideal and a pleasing sentiment.

1.                  Esotericism is not just for the head. To read and read, and learn and learn, is a big trap—and one that can entertain one for many years.

2.                  There is a lot of talk about love. The throat center thinks it knows what love is. But it is difficult to arrive at love through the mind alone—though it can help.

3.                  The mind can spend many years theorizing about love, and the emotions can aspire to love. And kama-manas (desire mind) can catch the dim reflection of love (which we call sentiment) and take it for the real thing. The word “pleasing” is very interesting, and suggests that the lower self is pleased with itself when it feels that dim kama-manasic reflection. This reflection, however, is a pleasing little glow, while the real Love is an all-consuming fire. If we think of some of the great mystics—St. Francis, St. John of the Cross, St. Theresa—it was no mild force which had seized them. Their whole personality was being consumed by real Love (as real as we can experience when not yet liberated Masters).

4.                  Yes, love is something other than all these lesser states—theories, ideals, sentiments. It is not worked up from below, but is evoked from ‘within’, or descends from ‘above’.

5.                  Perhaps we have to be surprised by love. It comes unbidden, and cannot be compelled.

6.                  The “scales fall from the eyes” and one is truly surprised that so many millennia could have been spent in a loveless state.

7.                  Fortunately, our whole solar system and all its lives, are being driven into the “Consuming Fire of Love” by the Solar Logos, who is a “Heart of Fiery Love”—a great heart center in a Super-Cosmic Logos (expressing through seven suns). All that is cosmology, and very interesting in its own way, but it makes the point. Our God is Love, and one day, we get seized by that Love and forever afterwards are a “prisoner of Love” (Sounds Piscean, doesn’t it? Let’s not forget that Pisces (the second cosmic decanate) may be, from one perspective, the most important sign of all the twelve for our Solar Logos. This needs pondering.


L.                  It is something that has grown in the trials and tests of life, so that the primary impulse of the life is towards self-sacrifice and the immolation of the lower nature.

1.                  The Fourth Purpose of Sanat Kumara calls for pain as a necessity.

2.                  It is called “The mysterious purpose which has necessitated the calling into activity the Principle of Pain.” (R&I 242)

3.                  All this pain has a purpose on our laggard planet—for we are told that we, Earth, should now be as advanced as the planet Venus is!

4.                  Pain, the cross, the renunciation of matter—these are the methods by which we grow into the Divine Love which is our planetary birthright.

5.                  Our planet is, in this solar system, essentially a planet of Love. It has a ray two soul and a ray three personality. These two rays are very unlike, and much adjustment is required before they harmonize. In this harmonization comes pain. The cross must be encircled, and we are in the process of it right now, as the Lord of the World, Sanat Kumara, is said to be undergoing His fourth initiation—the Crucifixion.

6.                  We are told that love will grow in the trials and tests of life. We think of the tests to which the Lords of Karma submit all forms of life on our planet, and we realize that Their purpose is the “revelation of love”

7.                  The Divine Plan is very simple in one way. It calls for the “Illumination of the Mind; the Revelation of Love; and the Evocation of the Will”

8.                  Have we seen in our own lives that “trials and tests’ reveal love? From the Mantram of Unification (DINA I, 790) we read, “Let pain bring due reward of light and love”. It seems to be the way things operate on this planet. If you can think of instances in your present life when love was revealed through your own personal hardship or those close to you, you will have a practical example of what for our planet must be, virtually, a law. “Suffering reveals Love”.

9.                  We on Earth are now on the “fast path” because we have so much catching up to do. All this is hidden in the “Mystery of the Moon Chain” about which you can read in A Treatise on Cosmic Fire. Suffice it to say, that our evolution is now being forced. Humanity is under immense pressure to make the transition into the Kingdom of Souls. All this does not come without pain to the personal self, but the reward is so great that we are supposed to count this pain and suffering as naught, and keep our minds and hearts focussed upon the imminent unfoldment.

10.              Perhaps the idea of “self-sacrifice” and the “immolation (burning up) of the lower nature” do not evoke very pleasant images—a bit too much like martyrdom (which, incidentally, Master Morya calls the “fast path”). Now we are entering a seventh ray age, and sixth ray terminology is rather out of fashion and seems a bit overdone. All this is true, to an extent.

11.              Yet there is no way, ultimately, to escape the liberating fire—no matter what may be the Age through which we are passing, and what the ray which is in power.

12.              Immolation is not the special prerogative of only those upon the sixth ray. The destruction “so as by fire” one day awaits us all—even though the fire be an internal one, consuming a hidden temple upon the higher mental plane.

13.              Perhaps we are to get used to the idea of this imminent fiery liberation by allowing the lower nature to be immolated in the Fire of Love—for that is what love will do—it will burn up the lower, personal self. And when real love is radiating in power, we will be happy (nay, joyful, blissful) about that burning.

14.              So, what then is the primary impulse of our life? Is it towards self-sacrifice and self-immolation? Can we accept these terms without becoming overly dramatic? One day all this has to go in favor of THAT.

We have, in Rule I for Applicants, been presented with some of the initial requirements upon the Path of Initiation. In fact these Rules are now more applicable to disciples and to discipleship groups, so the requirements of initiation are still more demanding.

But there is no harm and much good in being realistic. The “road winds uphill all the way”. Initiation is a hard job and the cost is “not less than everything”. So often along the Path, and in various lives, we may have become faint of heart, and preferred the easier way, to which the natural course of evolution will eventually bring us. This, too, is a legitimate way. But initiation (as presently presented to humanity) is, indeed, a forcing process, impelled by the intensive concentration of the Solar Angel, and propelled by the recent decisions of the Spiritual Hierarchy and of Shamballa.

When we study these Rules, we are putting ourselves into that fiery stream. Of course, we must remain practical, not lose our heads, and help each other along the Way—but it is a strenuous and demanding Way—and this we must realize. Yet, the “compensations are adequate” as Master D.K. has said in one of His most understated humorous remarks.

I find in Master DK great powers of inspiration. If ever we wonder whether great exertions of personality and soul are worth the effort, we have only to read some of His exhortations to His groups of disciples in the first part of the last century. There was a great war raging at that time, and circumstances were very dangerous for humanity. Now it is easier? Or is it? Do we really think that the 25 years or so, before the Hierarchical Conclave of 2025 will be a slow and easy drift towards a more enlightened condition of humanity. I think not. DK has told us that the “last ditch stand of materialism” will be fought with unusual ferocity. I am sure that we will have to earn our way into the promised Light through “blood, sweat, toil and tears”. This is why strong groups of illumined disciples are needed during the coming years which complete the Cycle of the Forerunner.

The planets Vulcan and Pluto are powerful before the first initiation of the individual disciple. Now we are facing, on a large scale, the first initiation of humanity, and Vulcan and Pluto will surely play their parts—two first ray planets, bringing that which the personality cannot consider pleasant.

I hope we all can realize that humanity is in a crisis situation, and that we are not studying just for ourselves alone, but to offer most necessary aid to a humanity whose distress will only deepen before the Great Light breaks forth.

Perhaps the stirring words of Master DK, at the end of the first section Volume I of Discipleship in the New Age, can be applied to our present times. I will take the liberty of offering this lengthy quotation, because it has meant so much to me, personally, and because I have returned to it time and time again if ever I have felt my aspiration or commitment flagging. Perhaps knowing this quote (if you do not already know and use it) will be useful to you too.

“Above all, I would say: Seek to recover the fervour of your earlier, spiritual aspiration and self-discipline. If you have never lost it (though many disciples have) seek to force that energy of inspiration to work out in an effective display of [Page 100] definite action upon the physical plane. How, you ask, my brothers? By increasing the radiance of your light in the world through love and meditation, so that others may turn to you as to a beacon light in the dark night of life which seems in this century to have descended upon humanity; seek to love more than you have ever believed was possible, so that others—frozen and chilled by life circumstance and the present horror of human existence—may turn to you for warmth and comforting. What I and all who are affiliated with the Hierarchy seek to do at this time of desperate crisis is to find those who are dependable points of living energy and through them pour out the love, the strength and the light which the world needs and must have if this storm is to be weathered. I ask you to render this service to me and to humanity. I ask nothing spectacular; it will, however, require a strenuous effort of your souls if you are to respond adequately; I ask nothing impossible; I would remind you that the apathy of the physical body and brain, the inertia of the feeling nature and the sense of futility of the mind when confronted with large issues will seem to hinder you.

Again I point the Way to you and again I wait. Will you intensify your inner life and achieve the power which will enable you to live simultaneously as an efficient human being and a living, loving soul? It is the establishing of the continuity of this dual process which is your main need at this time; it will lead to fusion, personality coordination and a greatly increased efficiency. Many disciples are not young and the settled habit of thought and of the feeling life is not easy to disrupt. They must, however, be disrupted and you must feel no resentment. The rhythms of the personality are stabilised and constitute your line of least resistance. You must cut athwart these, thus forming the cross of life and existence will then take on added difficulty. The results will be new rhythms of beauty.

To those who are standing in the blaze of pain (and their numbers are Legion), of agony, anxiety and distress—seeing it on every hand and attempting to stand steady in the midst of it all—I say: That which appears is not always that which truly is; that which rends and disrupts the personality life is frequently the agent of release, if rightly apprehended; that which will emerge when the Forces of Light have penetrated the world darkness will demonstrate the nature of the undying human [Page 101] spirit. To all of you I say: My love surrounds you and the aura of the Ashram of which I am the centre stands like a great defending wall around you and around all who are battling for the right. See that you battle. You can then, if you will, sense this loving protection. Each day, if you will, you can put yourself en rapport with your Master. We are not blind or uncaring. We know, however, that there are worse evils than death and pain. We know that this is the hour of humanity's greatest opportunity and that if men can pass triumphantly through this and (by the strength of their own souls) surmount this very present evil, then the evolution of humanity will be hastened beyond all that was believed possible. It will constitute a release, self-achieved and self-initiated. This means as much in the life of mankind as it means in the life of the individual disciple. That chance and that opportunity must not be taken from man; the gained spiritual and eternal values are of far greater importance than his temporary agony.

Little as you may realise it as you think of Us in Our so-called safe retreats, the capacity of identification with all that is involved in world pain today and the sensitivity of Those connected with the Hierarchy to the unhappy condition of humanity makes Their task of standing-by one of supreme spiritual agony. They understand the depths of the reaction of humanity; they comprehend and understand, for They are one with all men. This involves a far greater comprehension than you can grasp and one which can only be adequately expressed in the word "identification." They need the staunch support of all Their disciples, the steadfast love, the loyal attitude, the unquestioning response to human need which will enable Them to carry more easily the heavy burden which human karma has laid upon Them and which They carry voluntarily.

Will you give this? Will you aid Our work in every possible way, both as personalities, dedicated to service, and as souls who walk the lighted Way? The need of humanity for love and light, the need of the Hierarchy for channels and for those who will work under direction upon the earth can call forth all that you have to give and can evoke your soul (the only true reward that the disciple seeks) in power and love. This will happen to you, if you will forget the little self.

That your knowledge may be transmuted into wisdom and the eye of vision control your living processes and all your undertakings is the desire (deep within my heart) for each and all of you.

Your Master, Friend and Teacher,



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