Part V of V
Focus for the Sixth Month of Study
The two correlated Rules Six as a Whole
TWO Rules in Full: Synthetic Commentary
As in past times, this synthetic commentary will have a slightly different tone—more in the line of counsels and directives. Much of what could be said along a more analytical and academic line has been said, therefore the possible value of this different, twice-yearly approach.
Rule VI for Applicants
A. For Applicants: The purificatory fires burn dim and low when the third is sacrificed to the fourth. Therefore let the disciple refrain from taking life and let him nourish that which is lowest with the produce of the second.
Points to Consider in Relation to the Above Section
1. Purity means strength of contact with the higher energies, but we have to expand our conception of purity. It must apply to each of the personality vehicles and to the personality as a whole.
2. We are attempting to become truly living, vibratorily response beings. This means we must resonate to the vibratory levels of the higher worlds.
3. We are fire and we are that which burns. Probably, each of us has a choice about the intensity of the fire in which (and as which) we live.
4. Some of us are quite content to do a “slow burn”, and, indeed, this is the safest way—if the ‘safety’ of the personality is being considered. It is far from ‘safest’ for the imprisoned spirit.
5. Others of us may wish to force the issue, remembering that the process of initiation is a “forcing process”.
6. Probably we hear those words quite often—“forcing process”, but we can become inured to them and they may come to trouble our conscience very little, as we continue pursue our lives habitually. But if we once awaken to what it really means, we will take ourselves in hand and, under Vulcan and Mars, get ourselves into shape. Our undoubtedly wise and loving second ray Master has used the following disagreeable words (disagreeable to some)
“They are those well meaning people whose mental understanding outruns the power of their personalities to practice. They are those who are in touch with forces which they are not yet able to handle and control. They have done a great deal of the needed work of inner contact, but have not yet whipped the lower nature into shape. They are, therefore, unable to express that which they inwardly understand and somewhat realise.” (EP II 13-Underlining MDR)
7. Well, it all depends on the pressure to which we choose to subject ourselves—or rather, our not-selves. It comes down to the nature of our identification, does it not? If we think of ourselves as the personality, we will be little inclined to apply drastic purificatory measures (whipping ourselves into shape). If we are soul-identified, then we are simply dealing with the condition of our instrument which must be made fit for the task.
8. Probably, we are living in a time of what I would call ‘spirit rebellion’. This is stimulated by the recent series of Shamballa Impacts and by the time it is on our planet and in relation to still larger systemic and cosmic cycles. The spirit which suffers not has suffered long! Can this make sense to us?
9. In any case, the spirit is rising and insists on its right to express despite the disruption in comfort to the personality which this expression necessarily entails.
10.The “slow burn” and the “fast burn”—there are dangers in each. Probably it is well to strive for the “fast burn” yet watching the instrument closely as it does no good for the instrument to collapse under the pressure of an ambitious will.
11.The motive, really, cannot be ambition. Ambition is based upon identification as a personality. The motive must be higher and wider, resulting, ultimately, from a deep identification with and as humanity. When is the last time we tried successfully to identify as humanity?
12.We are as a world group facing a ‘crisis of will’. There seems to be no lack of will (however personally focussed) demonstrated by the representatives of the “forces of opposition”. The disciples of the world, however, are characterized far more by the second ray, which, almost habitually, responds “late in the day”. Witness the response of the Allied Forces in World Wars I and II—especially the American forces (asAmericais ruled by the second ray in the soul). The response came almost too late.
13.Individually and in our groups, we must think of this lesson. It is time for individuals and groups to be mobilized in a manner to which they are not accustomed. The energy is that of the non-sacred planet Mars, which has its valuable uses in the life of discipleship.
14.It is that same energy which helps one resolve to submit himself to the fires of purification so that the channels may be cleaned and cleared and the vitalizing energy flow.
15.Purification is a serious matter on all levels. We remember that it is mentioned as the first of the three Shamballic qualities/energies—Purification, Destruction, Organization.
16.We might say that purification is our obligation under the most recent Shamballa Impact.
17.The average disciple is physically tired, emotionally distressed, and perhaps, mentally clear—so the Tibetan tells us. So have we the strength to take purification seriously?
18.We are familiar with the idea that right diet and exercise and plenty of sunshine purify the physical etheric mechanism. But right thought and feeling are even greater purifiers. Love purifies the emotional vehicle, and illumined thought, the mental.
19.I guess what I am saying is that we will not begin to really live unless we can carry out the necessary purifications of our lower vehicles. These days, perhaps not too many are focussed on strictly physical purifications, but they do have their place, and it is absolutely surprising how many well-meaning disciples are filling their lungs with smoke and their bodies with poisons—habitually and with frequency. As if the indulgence in these destructive habits did not matter!
20.But the real focus of concentration must be on the mind and emotions—where the real pollution occurs.
21.Sometimes, disciples of the Tibetan’s Teaching (a great Teaching) have their “heads in the clouds”. The concepts offered are so inspiring and the higher vistas so attractive, the students are likely to overlook the obvious—the real condition of their instrument. Let us not be among those who do. The times are serious and real accomplishment is demanded—not simply the hope of expansion based upon theoretical knowledge.
22.I would suggest that when a disciple applies himself in earnest to purification, he will discover the nature and strength of his will. The lunar lords have their habits and they do not relinquish those habits without a fight. They are to be trained, and this requires sustained attention—especially to those one or two remaining habits in our nature which are really resistant. Each of us will know what they are, and really, they are no one’s business but our own.
23.Will we take care of them—essentially by thinking or doing the opposite until the pattern is altered? That is up to us. The work is hardly glamorous and hardly expansive in the usual Jupiterian sense. It is quite Saturnian and mundane, but absolutely necessary.
24.Probably it is some little thing that is holding us back from initiation. “The small lesson mastered (and many of you are finding it a hard lesson) leads inevitably to wider opportunity in Service.”(EP II 401)
25.Thus, real progress may come down to attending to a very small ‘space’—the actual condition of the personality—so easily overlooked.
26.Purification is, no doubt, a sacrifice—as the personality conceives it. One must use the power to envision the future to provide an incentive for this sacrifice. Love will provide an even greater incentive.
27.If purification were complete, we would no longer be aspirants and disciples—we would be initiate. We stand in our own way when we fail to take the necessary purificatory steps. But the matter is subtle, and the physical purifications are the least of the matter.
28.Let each of us plan how we might better apply light to the mind, love to the astral nature and spiritual will to the etheric physical mechanism. We will not be sorry.
29.The need for true servers is, at this time, very great. A true server has been through many drastic purifications. No one will do this for us. Do we want to be true servers?
Rule VI for Disciples and Initiates
B. For Disciples and Initiates: Let the group know that life is one and naught can ever take or touch that life. Let the group know the vivid, flaming, drenching Life that floods the fourth when the fifth is known. The fifth feeds on the fourth. Let then the group—merged in the fifth—be nourished by the sixth and seventh and realise that all the lesser rules are rules in time and space and cannot hold the group. It onward moves in life.
Points to Consider in Relation to the Above Section
1. Is the consciousness that “life is one” our habitual consciousness? Probably we fall from it rather frequently—so demanding are the immediate pressures and requirements. Perhaps, however, we can recover it quickly.
2. To know that “life is one” is far more than a thought; rather, it is a realization. And realizations involved the heart—not only the heart center but the heart within the head.
3. Our very first task in this more advanced Rule is actually to know that “life is one”. And not just to know this, but to realize the invulnerability of life—which should be a source of continuing joy.
4. So let us find a way (no doubt an individual way) to establish ourselves in the One Life, as the One Life. If “Life is One” remains for us but a platitude, we have not gone far enough, nor should we rest content if it remains merely a thought.
5. What will it take to penetrate into realization? Each must find her or her own way. The esoteric prescriptions are general; when they are used, the ‘way in’ becomes specific to the user.
6. Then, we are asked to know the fifth—in this case, the fifth kingdom of nature, the kingdom of souls. This is hardly possible, however, unless the Fifth Creative Hierarchy also means something real to us, and this requires that we commune with our Solar Angel.
7. How do we conceive the Solar Angel? The Solar Angel is a member of the Fifth Creative Hierarchy, and a growing and intensifying communion with the energy streams emanating from this Angel conditions our consciousness sufficiently to enter the fifth kingdom.
8. In an act of gratitude and acquiescence, therefore, we should take the Solar Angel seriously, and make sure that some rapport with this great being is established daily. Then, we have an opportunity to be flooded by the “vivid, flaming, drenching life”. We can ask, “Are we flooded in this way?” “How often?” “Under what circumstances?”
9. Perhaps in our moments of inspiration we experience the ‘fiery flood’. But how often are we inspired? I think we have to see to the level of our inspiration, which, of course, is related to the level of our purification. Inspiration cannot ‘flow down’ a clogged channel.
10. I think it is clear that we are being called upon to demonstrate an entirely higher level of living than will be habitual for the average, non-aspiring individual.
11. We are surely and soundly members of the fourth, but it is the fifth which must be on our minds and in our hearts. The fifth is never ‘far away’; we know the ‘modes of attunement’. Our task is not to forget the path into the fifth. Otherwise, how can we hope of any ‘nourishment’ by the sixth and seventh?
12. The reach of this Rule is very great. The fifth is a sufficient reach for most. Are we solidly established ‘residents’ of the fifth kingdom of nature?
13. Perhaps, we will begin to gather some idea of our ‘relative spiritual infancy’. The mind outruns accomplishment and, surrounded ever by the glorious words, we may imagine we are accomplishing. But the reality is something else.
14. Let it then be before the minds of the group members that we are to be “merged in the fifth”, and let this become a practical goal requiring daily assessment.
15. Theorization about the quality of the sixth and seventh kingdoms of nature is of course possible, but a firm basis of soul-infusion is required for these higher states to become even ‘hints of reality’.
16. The nourishment ‘descends’ when the mechanism is pure. We can all see the relation between purity and nourishment, can we not? Interestingly, these two terms have a Virgo association (Virgo being the sixth sign and this Rule being also the sixth).
17. It is interesting how much this advanced rule deals with the “life” aspect of divinity. Perhaps this should not be surprising, as the number six connects directly to the monad on the sixth systemic plane (counting from below). As well, on that plane, the sign Virgo rules, and we have already seen how this sign is connected to the Rule in question.
18. When one has a consciousness captivated by time and space, it is impossible to understand and apply a Rule meant for those who know something of the reality of the “life aspect”.
19. How then shall we disabuse ourselves of the illusions of time and space? This is a huge question and requires lives of endeavor for success. I wonder how often we wake up in the morning and remind ourselves of the illusory nature of the time-space world. Yet the great yogis do this constantly. If they do not, illusion grows over the consciousness as algae grows over the pond (the allusion comes from the writings of the great sage, Shankara).
20. Perhaps if we remind ourselves that all places are one place, and at the same time, no-place—we shall summon the necessary intuition to create a realization.
21. Perhaps, if we remind ourselves that all times are one time, and yet are no-time, we shall do the same.
22. The initiate consciousness must collapse time and space to a point. That point is everywhere (and, yet, nowhere in particular) and is accessible only now.
23. These are the fundamental metaphysical realizations that make the use of this more advanced rule possible. As long as we are trapped by time and space, the “lesser rules” are for us, and we should not fool ourselves into thinking otherwise.
24. But if life begins to mean something real to us, because we have abstracted sufficiently to disidentify with time and space and objective reality, we can (with those who have done likewise) “onward move in life”.
25. This is our challenge—to make these metaphysical abstractions real, our “daily fare”. They cannot remain remote, abstruse thoughts, barely attainable. Realization must accompany the reading of the words, and this happens (for people of our kind) largely through persistent meditation, during which we remind ourselves of the importance of such thoughts.
26. We can see that the thoughts in this Rule and the others come, essentially, from the realm of the spiritual triad. They do not concern the personality. They are not written for personalities.
27. The sooner we disidentify as personalities, the sooner we will be able to understand these Rules and use them as they should be used.
28. From time to time, we must remind ourselves that Master DK is writing for the soul-infused, triadally inspired consciousness. Only a rather liberated consciousness can understand what He is talking about.
29. It behooves us to bring ourselves to that state of relative liberation from concern with our fate in the lower three worlds. We attend to the lower worlds, of course, because we, like the Hierarchy, want to help the desperate situation which has developed in those worlds.
30. But we know that our real identity has little to do with those worlds—that essentially, though “in” those worlds, we are not “of” them.
31. I have been trying to present a ‘platform of requirements’ upon which one must stand if the higher Rules are to mean anything real.
32. Theory enlivens only for a short time. When it is realized how far most theory is from practice, depression may ensure. It is realization that truly enlivens, and we know that realization is something of an atmic quality, ‘resident’ upon the fifth subplane of the atmic plane.
33. We are reminding ourselves of the great ‘reach’ of what we are doing. That reminder should make us humble and realistic, and yet, still full of hope for individual and group accomplishment.
34. One becomes, if it may be said, the ‘sober enthusiast’. The Path is full of paradoxes, and their reconciliation is only possible to the experienced disciple.
Dear Friends, we are completing this round of study on Rule VI for Disciples and Initiates. Stefan and I have decided that we should take a month’s pause to review the first six Rules, at which time we can revisit Rule VI in relation to the five foregoing Rules. The astrological situation allows us to take this pause with ease. The lunar months are more than the solar months, and so we are ahead of ourselves—if we wish to maintain the Aquarius/Leo rhythm for endings and beginnings. In another two and a half years or so, we may do the same again—just before our final push towards ‘conclusion’—if one can speak of conclusion when studying the Rules which will be the main curriculum for the New Esoteric Schools in centuries to come.
Friends, let’s make these Rules as experientially real to us as possible. Application is the order of the day. Let us remind ourselves of the ‘spiritual height’ of our studies, and yet never become discouraged thereby; the possibility for significant application always exists.
In Light Love and Power,
Michael (and Stefan)