28 Rules Group

Commentary on Rule IX Part II

R&I (172-174)

(All Highlighting, Bolding and Underlining—MDR)



Rule IX

Let the group know there are no other selves.  Let the group know there is no colour, only light; and then let [Page 172] darkness take the place of light, hiding all difference, blotting out all form.  Then—at the place of tension, and at that darkest point—let the group see a point of clear cold fire, and in the fire (right at its very heart) let the One Initiator appear Whose star shone forth when first the Door was passed.


1.                  The analysis of each of these sentences will come during the particular months of study during which each is the focus of group attention.

2.                  As I ponder the substance of the commentary below, I am aware of how many great thoughts the Tibetan has included within this section. We could certainly expand our consideration of these jewels.

3.                  The entirety of the Rules suggests the initiation into being and monadic realization. There is reason to believe that the Rule can refer to the fifth initiation.


The greatest problem facing aspirants and disciples prior to the third initiation is that of comprehending the nature of identification.  This concerns (in the first instance) the relation of the self to the Self and of all selves to the all-inclusive SELF.  It involves the mystery of duality with which they are occupied, and the very moment that theory as to essential unity becomes definite realisation, then the realm of synthesis is entered.  For that type of realisation, language as we now have it has no words, and it is therefore impossible to formulate concepts to interpret the consequent and resultant state of being.  "Identification with" is the phrase which approaches the closest to the initial idea, and until man has grasped his identical at-one-ness with even one human being, it is not possible for him even to think about it in any truly constructive manner.  The complete fusion of the negative and the positive aspects in marriage, at the moment that life is transmitted and transferred, is the only tangible though unsatisfactory symbol of this life-sharing process which takes place when an individual or a group knows actually and not simply theoretically that "there are no other selves."


4.                  Another profound paragraph. Notice how identification is a theme which engages the effort of the second degree initiate prior to the third initiation. “Mental illumination” is characteristic of the initiate of the second degree “whilst spiritual perception or intuitive instinct signifies preparedness for the Transfiguration, the third initiation.” (DINA II, 267)

5.                  It is, therefore, possible to relate the growth in the power to identify with the development of “spiritual perception” and “intuitive instinct”—qualities associated with the third degree. The “illumined mind” and “spiritual intelligence”, necessary at the second degree, prepare the way for entry into the state of identification.

6.                  What is being said here is that the intuition reveals the truth of identification. Intuition is far more than a “psychic hunch” (as the Tibetan has informed us). Intuition deals with whole and wholeness. Identification with the part leads, progressively, to identification with the whole.

7.                  We are told that identification “concerns (in the first instance) the relation of the self to the Self and of all selves to the all-inclusive SELF.” Three levels of selfhood are here referenced—the personal self, the self as soul, and the self as the one and only Universal Self—i.e., SELF (to which identification as the Monad gives entrée).

8.                  Realistically, this process of identifying with and as the SELF cannot be said to achieve its fullest intensity with the tiny human being. The great Logoi—planetary, solar, constellational, and super-constellational are all progressively identifying with the “Universal Self”, and Their capacity to do so is so much greater than that of the human being, that it is impossible for us to conceive what identification means for Them.

9.                  Pause for a moment to consider the words, “with” and “as”. Identification “with” the Self or SELF still suggests duality—one thing linked to another. Identification as the Self or Self, eliminates the duality and suggests fusion and merging—the emergence of only one identity whereas before there were two.

10.              Why should duality be a “mystery”? Fundamentally, because the fact of unity contradicts appearance. In that World of Appearance all is dualistic. This deluding illusion must be solved by the inner consciousness, and how the solution comes is fundamentally mysterious. There is not a set formula for converting the illusion of duality into the realization of unity and oneness.

11.              Perhaps we might call the solution and gradual wearing away or dissolution of boundaries.

12.              Mind, as ordinarily used, is not very good at dissolving boundaries, but the heart is very good. We can see how the combined potencies of Pisces, Neptune, Jupiter, the first and second rays all enter into the task—for these are the subtle energies which destroy, dissolve, wear away boundaries. We note that Neptune and Jupiter and both active at the second initiation after which the art and science of identification become important to the advancing disciple.

13.              At least one should know the instruments through which to create the state of identification (which, by the way, inwardly, already exists, because it is the natural state of awareness of Spirit). As well, one should know the energies with which one can work. The process itself is not strictly rational—i.e., it transcends reason, and in a way, it transcends even pure reason. We might say that the state of identification lies on the further side of pure reason. On the plane of atma it begins to be real. On the plane of the Monad, it is real. I am speaking here of identification that transcends the identification of personality with soul.

14.              Almost every sentence in this paragraph is like a jewel of wisdom. DK says the following: “the very moment that theory as to essential unity becomes definite realisation, then the realm of synthesis is entered.” All of us must begin with theory; it is a first step. We seek a clear mental understanding of the state we would achieve. We learn the words related to this state, and thoughts about it begin to form. These thoughts grow ever clearer until we are able to describe the state with accuracy. We are, however, still not within the state to be achieved. We are as an accurate observer of outer evidence. Intimate participation in the state is still missing. Once, however, that the theory as to essential unity becomes a definite realization, there is a fundamental change. In a way we “own” the state; it becomes our own (although the dualism of the language just used is obvious).

15.              The important thing to realize is that we cannot enter the realm of synthesis until definite realization is ours. We can talk about (third aspect) synthesis (first aspect), but we are not inside it. The second aspect (love) is much closer, and a more reliable door into synthesis than the third aspect. We can love our way into synthesis. This could be called the ‘Way of the Christ’.

16.              Synthesis is the world’s most intimate experience. Love is more intimate than thought, and identification/synthesis is still more intimate.

17.              Although we have no language to describe the state of identification, the attempt to formulate such language will bring us closer to the realization of that state.

18.              The Tibetan offers us an arresting thought: “until man has grasped his identical at-one-ness with even one human being, it is not possible for him even to think about it [identification] in any truly constructive manner.” Probably, when on is “in love”, one begins to think about oneness with the one whom one loves. This oneness certainly has to transcend the fusion of personalities (though that, too, may eventuate at times). One is reaching into the soul of another and discovering harmony, unity and, only then, identicalness.

19.              But one need not be “in love” in any conventional sense to practice sensing oneness with individual others. One can generalize the “in love” experience to other human beings that one does not even know personally. When this can be done, one begins to wield love freely.

20.              No personal factor in another will be the trigger for sensed oneness. Something far more subtle—beyond any quality possessed by another—is required. The content-less aspect of oneself is reaching towards the content-less aspect of the other. Being loves being. Being is being. Spirit seeks and merges with Spirit—though, again, this is dualistic language, for how can that which already is another, merge with another?

21.              In the lower worlds opposites attract. In the world Spirit, ‘identicals’ attract.

22.              He closes the paragraph with an amazing sentence:

“The complete fusion of the negative and the positive aspects in marriage, at the moment that life is transmitted and transferred, is the only tangible though unsatisfactory symbol of this life-sharing process which takes place when an individual or a group knows actually and not simply theoretically that ‘there are no other selves’.”

This sentence is written as if from a great distance—from triadal consciousness. It is a sentence which reflects Divine Law, for the word “marriage” is used. He is obviously talking about the consummation of the sex act, but putting it in terms of the life aspect. He gives us, in a simple sentence, the reason for the sex act (the “transfer of life”), and its function as a symbol of the highest unitive state of awareness. Thus, in this sentence “The Highest and the Lowest Meet”; physical sex and ‘Identification in Oneness’ are unforgettably related.

I do not think He is suggesting that in order to feel oneness with another it is necessary to engage is physical sex. Great souls like the Christ live in a state of oneness with all human beings, and, probably, with all aspects of Creation.

23.              Perhaps it is not such an easy matter to know that “there are no other selves” though many glibly speak of it.

24.              The initiate of the third degree is to reveal oneness. The inner curriculum prior to the third degree provides the learning that makes this possible.

Identification (to use the only word available for our purpose) is connected with dynamic life, with conscious enhancement, with completion and with creative sharing, plus process.  It is a process of participation—consciously and constructively undertaken—in the life actions and reactions of the One in Whom we live and move and have our being; it is related to the network of life channels which keep the form aspect of the planetary Logos functioning as a "Divine Representation."  Note that wording.  It is connected with the circulation of that "life more abundantly" to which the Christ referred when dealing with the true nature of His [Page 173] mission.  It might be said that as He uttered this phrase this mission dawned on Him and He made a preliminary effort to serve Shamballa, instead of the Hierarchy of which He was even then the Head.  Later, He enunciated as best He could the extent of this realisation, in the words so familiar to Christians, "I and the Father are One."  This He also attempted to elucidate in the seventeenth chapter of St. John's Gospel.  There is no other passage in the literature of the world which has exactly the same quality.  Oneness, unity, synthesis and identification exist today as words related to consciousness and as expressing what is at present unattainable to the mass of men.  This manifesto or declaration of the Christ constitutes the first attempt to convey reaction to contact with Shamballa, and can be correctly interpreted only by initiates of some standing and experience.  A concept of unity, leading to cooperation, to impersonality, to group work and to realisation, plus a growing absorption in the Plan are some of the terms which can be used to express soul awareness in relation to the Hierarchy.  These reactions to the united Ashrams which constitute the Hierarchy are steadily increasing and are beneficently conditioning the consciousness of the leading members of the forefront of the human wave at present in process of evolution.


25.              One of the best definitions of “identification” follows. “Identification (to use the only word available for our purpose) is connected with dynamic life, with conscious enhancement, with completion and with creative sharing, plus process.” In the state of identification, the great, dynamic power of Life is sensed, overriding in its Presence any of its forms or qualities of expression; the consciousness (though in a way transcended) is sensitized, “enhanced”; the sense of consummation, and completed wholeness emerges in that enhanced consciousness; the creative flow of life-augmenting energies is registered; and one participates in the process which engages the whole and not just the part. Well might we “ponder on this”!

26.              Identification “is a process of participation—consciously and constructively undertaken—in the life actions and reactions of the One in Whom we live and move and have our being”. Who are we when we are in the state of identification? Just a tiny unit (in a way), but mysteriously the same as that which ‘contains’ us. We take part—not just a fragmentary part, but an organic and totally integrated part in the life processes of the whole in which we are included. We know exactly what we are doing, and we do it constructively—not just as our tiny selves, but as if the great ‘containing Being’ were acting through us. This “One in Whom…” can be the Planetary Logos or the Solar Logos, but always it will be a “Logos”—an ‘intelligent, loving, willing Entity Who is an authentic Pattern within the Divine Whole’.

27.              Further, identification “is related to the network of life channels which keep the form aspect of the planetary Logos functioning as a ‘Divine Representation’.” This sentence tells us that the condition of the etheric body supports the state of identification. Identification is a state of synthetic realization. Synthesis prevails and archetypal flows of all kinds are unimpeded. Identification is, thus, an unobstructed, unfettered state. When the many parts within the whole are in unimpeded relation to each other, the sense of relation is transcended and the sense of identicalness supervenes. When energy flows between all parts are complete (as archetypally intended) then the Whole becomes more impressive and present to consciousness than the many ideally related parts.

28.              A principle is here to be recognized. The only way to achieve liberation into the next higher state of realization, is to perfect the pattern of the lower state which serves as the foundation to the higher state. For instance, to enter triadal awareness fully, the state of soul awareness must be perfected—which it is at the fourth initiation.

29.              What is a “Divine Representation”? It is a faithful likeness, a true symbol of the higher state it represents. Etheric flows sustain the form aspect of the Planetary Logos. When flows are perfect, health is perfect, and the ‘Divine Representation’ is truly representative. When, however, there is blockage and obstruction, there is no true representation.

30.              Note that the Tibetan is trying to do what He said could not be done—He is seeking to find language which will convey to us something of that intangible state of identification which anticipates the “Isolated Unity” of the Master. Is He succeeding with us, do you think?

31.              Further, identification “is connected with the circulation of that ‘life more abundantly’ to which the Christ referred when dealing with the true nature of His mission.” Identification is an experience of ‘great fulness’ and abundance. The sense of lack (Saturn) characterizes all lesser states of consciousness. But all that is lacking in lower states of realization is abundantly restored in the state of identification. The blockages to Shamballic Life are removed, and the abundance of Shamballa flows unimpeded through the energy conduits of all aspects of the human energy system.

32.              We must be grateful to the Tibetan for presenting us with an understanding of the Christ’s mission which far transcends the usual story. The Tibetan is saying that when Christ said, “I am come that they may have Life more Abundantly”, He was realizing the nature of Shamballa and His relation to it.

33.              Human beings interpret the Christ’s mission in relation to themselves, but it is clear that as a candidate for the sixth initiation, the Christ was simultaneously approaching Shamballa, even as He was serving humanity in the most tangible ways.

34.              Note that the Christ, even then, was Head of the Spiritual Hierarchy—a post which, in modern times, can only be taken by a Master of the Wisdom. Surely then, He was, in Palestine, a fifth degree initiate. It is likely that the Christ became a Master no later than the Enlightenment of the Buddha (when the Christ assumed the role of World Teacher). It may be (we cannot know with certainty) that the Christ passed through the fifth degree even before that Enlightenment.

35.              The Christ has said “I and the Father are One”—expressing His developing identification with Shamballa and with Sanat Kumara

36.              The statements on oneness recorded in the Gospel of St. John are, according to the Tibetan, unique. The Tibetan has something unusual to say about this passage:

“I advise all disciples who seek to cooperate with the impending activity of the Hierarchy to study with care the seventeenth chapter of the Gospel of St. John; this was written by that disciple of love, under the influence of the energy emanating from the buddhic vehicle of the Christ, which is also—as you have been told—identical with the buddhic vehicle of the Buddha. The identity of the two vehicles is symbolic of the entire teaching anent "isolated unity" and divine participation, which the Masters in Their Ashrams are teaching Their disciples of all grades, these days, as the first step toward the externalisation of Their activities.” (EXH, 687)

Is this not profound? An amazing occult process is here explained. The Buddha’s “vestures” have long been available to His Brother, the Christ. There is an effective fusion between these two great Brothers—a fusion so unsuspected by the majority of Their followers.

Notice that the themes of “isolated unity” and “divine participation” with which we have been dealing are part of a very necessary teaching for the success of the process of externalization.

37.              Although the fulness of identification (let us say, as the Christ experiences it) transcends the realizations of the buddhic plane), it was under the inspiration of the buddhic vehicle of the Christ that perhaps the major world statement on identification was written. It becomes clear that the Masters are attempting to instill something of buddhic realization in the consciousness of their disciples. Effectively, buddhic realization is Love-Wisdom.

38.              What we should register, I think, is that both the manifesto, “I and the Father are One” and the seventeenth chapter of the Gospel of St. John are Shamballic statements, in which the Christ was attempting to convey His contact with Shamballa. It is so simple a statement. We cannot fathom it, however, unless some measure of real monadic awareness is dawning in our consciousness. It is a profound seed thought for those who seek to enter into the state of identification, isolated unity, realization of oneness and synthesis.

39.              As well, if one seeks to know what the Divine Will really is, is this not an excellent seed thought? “I and my Father are One” and “Not my Will Father, but Thine be done” are companion mantrams.

40.              In this paragraph we have contrasted the Way of Shamballa and the Way of the Hierarchy. “Unity, leading to cooperation, to impersonality, to group work and to realisation, plus a growing absorption in the Plan are some of the terms which can be used to express soul awareness in relation to the Hierarchy”. “Oneness, unity, synthesis and identification” are expressive of Shamballa.

41.              To what degree then is our consciousness aligned with Hierarchy? To what degree is our awareness capable of impression from Shamballa?


Beyond this state of awareness there lies a state of being which is as far removed from the consciousness of Members of the Hierarchy as that is, in its turn, removed from the consciousness of the mass of men.  Endeavour to grasp this, even if your brain and your power to formulate thought rejects the possibility of this exalted livingness.  Be not discouraged at this inability to understand; remember that this state of being embraces the goal towards which the Masters strive, and which the Christ Himself is only now attaining.


42.              The state far removed the consciousness of Hierarchy is the Shamballic state of being. An analogy is given, showing that just as we strive towards the state of consciousness characteristic of the Hierarchy (a state which for us is both ideal and remote) so the members of Hierarchy, similarly, have a state of being which for Them is equally ideal and remote and towards which They strive.

43.              The stage of attainment of the Christ is hinted; He is really just attaining Shamballic consciousness. In His incarnation in Palestine, He was reaching out towards it and endeavoring to express it. The Masters are striving towards Shamballa, attempting to make it a reality in Their awareness. We are just beginning to learn something about it, and can, in group form, under intense stimulation, and at high points of the spiritual year, receive, perhaps, just a mediated touch of this planetarily supreme energy.

44.              We can see how the Tibetan’s work is producing a sense of proportion and co-measurement in the group mind of the esoteric community. It is so easy to measure wrongly—to overestimate or underestimate ourselves—but, mostly, overestimate. Of course we are eager to get on with the real reason for living, and we wish to have freedom over that which has enslaved us for ages. But added to this aspiration must be the keenest sense of humility and right proportion. Only thus can we avoid deluding ourselves and wasting precious (though illusory) time as a result. Though “time is an illusion”, time is also “of the essence”.


It is for this reason that the symbolism of light and darkness is used in the words:  Let the group know there is no colour, only light; and then let darkness take the place of light.


Just as the individual has to pass through the stage wherein all "colour" goes out of life as he emerges out of [Page 174] the glamour which conditions the astral plane, so groups in preparation for initiation must go through the same devastating process.  Glamour disappears, and for the first time the group (as is the case with the individual) walks in the light.  As the group thus walks, unitedly its units learn a lesson (one clearly enunciated by modern science) that light and substance are synonymous terms; the true nature of substance as a field and medium of activity becomes clear to the initiate-members of the group.  To this H.P.B. referred when he said that the true occultist works entirely in the field of forces and energies.


45.              Perhaps we wish to live a “colorful” life, full of variety, interest and contrast. Perhaps, above all, we wish to live an illumined life, in which (color or no color!) we will to understand. Perhaps we wish to live a life in which the highest form of ‘spiritual darkness’ prevails. This would be the Shamballic life, but are we, temporarily at least, willing to relinquish color and light (as usually understood by students of spirituality)?

46.              So there is an evolutionary progression—from color, to light, to darkness.

47.              When we say, “Let the group know there is no color”, it is rather like saying, ‘let the group know there are no opposites, no contrasts’. Some are delighted by the colorful life full of change and contrast. Others find it destabilizing to the illumination of consciousness. Perhaps changes in color are related to changes within the astral body. Some seek to transcend such astral changes. But much depends upon the ray type.

48.              What is it like for all color to go out of life? It can indicate a developmental stage or it can indicate one who simply doesn’t know how to live. Some, due to ray type or conditioning, have become non-responsive to the beautiful variety of life. Either they just don’t care or are too inhibited due to bad experience or poor conditioning. Their appreciation for that which God has made is lacking. Venus (the planet of appreciation) does not function well—at least its influence is not well received and expressed. When one thinks that even the metaphysical construction of souls, planets, and stars is based upon the pattern of the flower, one has the sense that God not only loves Beauty but is Beauty. So the inability to appreciate color can indicate limitation of consciousness and even a pathological rejection of life’s possibilities.

49.              If color temporarily goes out of life because of passage through a certain developmental phase, it is another matter. And it is temporary for, after all, Sanat Kumara is the Master Artist, Musician and Ritualist. His very being lives in Beauty, and all the rich color and sound upon and within the planet are generated and sustained by Him as He acts through His “Daily Ritual”

Yet there can be phases, governed by the fifth ray as it separates itself from the emotional volatility of the sixth, when the usual colorful responses and responses to color, must be superseded by the realization of increasing light. Thus variety is forsaken for the sake of clarity.

The astral body loves its spontaneous, unpredictable, colorful responses. These make life ‘interesting’ and never very quiet for long. This type of stimulation masquerades as the sense of “being alive”.

Those who have retreated into the “attitude of the Observer” respond less and see more. They are disengaging from colorful volatility. They wish to know all and understand all, and so they quiet the enthusiasms of the astral nature, and focus exclusively in the mental nature—though eventually beyond.

This focusing can, at first and at times, become dry and lifeless. The usual and lower ‘happinesses’ have been relinquished, and the higher joys have not taken their place. “How oft we sicken thing o’er with the pale cast of thought”. Life loses it vibrancy and the man loses his power to respond and to be spontaneous. Other say to him, “You think too much; live a little”. But it is too late. What other consider living, he now considers glamor.

The Tibetan calls the leaving behind of the astral body and its glamors a “devastating process”. From the joys of sentiency one must transition to the joys of the illumined mind; but detachment comes first and illumination later.

50.              The word, “colour” can mean “veil” as well as ‘qualitative contrast’. If colour is a veil, then light itself represents an unveiling. Colour is a limitation upon light. “Life, like a dome of many colored glass stains the white radiance of eternity.” (Shelley).

51.              Thus, one comes closer to reality when one leaves colour for the sake of light. But somewhere in the transition is the sense of passing through a lifeless desert.

52.              The lesson to be learned in light is “that light and substance are synonymous terms”. All quality is precipitated from the “Ocean of Light”. This, the individual initiate and the initiate group come to know.

53.              As they achieve initiate consciousness and begin to realize the equivalency of light/energy/substance/matter, the door is open to them to become creative in the world of differentiation and contrast—i.e., the world of colour.

54.              There is much the Master can create through the imaginative power of Kriyashakti from the world of light—His “mayavirupa” (or thought-created body) is one. Our planetary God is a creator with a powerful imagination and a control over light-substance: thus, our worlds come to be.

55.              The Kabala tells us of the “boundless light” from which all matter and form are precipitated. “Bright space” is the son of “dark space” (SD, Stanza III, Sloka 7), and from it the universe (as we know it) is emanated.

56.              The individual or group that temporarily leaves colour behind is stepping towards reality and the world of causation. Light is causative of colour. But “dark space” (intensively spiritual light) is causative of light.

57.              The colorful world is rich, vibrant, “heated”, and engaging. The world of light can seem remote, cold and detached. The second ray is very much the ‘ray of light’. Some types upon the second ray can develop the following unfortunate characteristics:

“This is called the ray of wisdom from its characteristic desire for pure knowledge and for absolute truth—cold and selfish, if without love, and inactive without power.” (EP I, 203)

There is a stage in the pursuit of light, when “warmth” has not yet been achieved. Have we met students of spirituality who seemed cold and illumined, distant and detached? I would say, “all the time”. It is phase which must be endured.

The sequence is as follows: colorful astral responsiveness; mental illumination (often cold and dry); buddhic livingness, intuitively reclaiming and harmonizing of color and sound.

58.              But the lesson must be learned; the world is crystallized light, densified light. Light, in its purity, lies behind all the rich variety of form.

59.              This same transition of which we are speaking can be viewed as the transition from the mystical consciousness to the occult consciousness. We remember however that the true initiate is both occultist and mystic!—responsive and unresponsive, detached and engaged, “in the world yet not of the world”. These are some of the occult paradoxes, among which is the preservation of colour while abandoning it. It takes a while, however, before the ‘simultaneous containment of the opposites’ becomes possible, and along the way, the arid period ensues.

The next lesson which the group unitedly apprehends is the significance of the words that "darkness is pure spirit."  This recognition, realisation, apprehensive, comprehensive (call it what you will) is so overwhelming and all-embracing that distinctions and differences disappear.  The disciple realises that they are only the result of the activity of substance in its form-making capacity and are consequently illusion and non-existent, from the angle of the spirit at rest in its own centre.  The only realisation left is that of pure Being Itself.


60.              Usually, “darkness” is considered empty, indicative of lack or of evil, and ‘darkening’ indicative of a reduction of vibration. But so limited is humanity’s range of registration, that whatever vibrations cannot make their impact upon the human mechanism of reception are relegated to the realm of darkness. As there are some sounds which are either too high or too low for the human ear to hear, they are relegated to the realm of silence (even though there is no real silence—within the Universe). Similarly, for the vibrations usually registered as light—those too high or too low are relegated to the realm of darkness (even though there is no absolute darkness—within the Universe). Organs of perception equipped to register those very high or low vibrations would register them as light of some kind.

61.              There is a principle here: that which exists is light of some kind. Absolute Darkness, Absolute Silence and Absolute Non-Being are equivalent.

62.              Is there “pure spirit” on the cosmic physical plane? We call it pure but, relatively, it is still veiled (just as every expression on the cosmic physical plane is veiled), and would be less veiled on each progressively ‘higher’ plane.

63.              Nevertheless, such spirit is sufficiently “pure” to be so “overwhelming and all-embracing that distinction and differences disappear”—at least to the human consciousness.

64.              Light is required to ‘see’ distinctions in fields of ‘lesser light’. When the light is too great however, it obliterates the distinctions which light of less intensity would reveal. We have all had the experience of coming from a relatively dark room into the bright sunlight and finding ourselves temporarily blinded (“overwhelmed” by greater light). Conversely, we have experienced coming from a brightly lit room into the relative darkness, and also being unable for a time, to see. I remember once long ago looking at a television, and suddenly seeing the image completely disappear; a photographer had turned on “flood lights” in the room in order to take moving pictures. The ‘greater light’ had completely obliterated the ‘lesser light’ (the television images), blotting out all form. As well, we remember that St. Paul was blinded for three days, when during one phase of the process of the third initiation he was impacted by the light of the Monad.

65.              In these realizations connected with spirit, the reality of form is negated. Form is revealed as the illusory, impermanent effect of the activity of substance.

66.              Therefore, does form exist or does it not? It exists in a way, just the way every perceived illusion exists in consciousness, but it does not really exist “from the angle of the spirit at rest in its own centre”.

67.              In this case the word “exist” refers not to whether we perceive a thing or not: it relates to the essentiality of a thing, and its fundamental permanence or impermanence. The forms generated within the field of substance are so ‘insubstantial’ and fleeting that, relative, to “spirit at rest in its own center”, they are considered not to exist in any fundamental sense—even though they are registered.

68.              A most suggestive phrase is “spirit at rest in its own centre”. In a way, that which moves is unreal. That which is still is real. “Be still and know that I am God”; movement conceals the essence of God. The phrase, “spirit at rest in its own centre” is suggestive of the first ray.

69.              Time, space and movement are the three aspects of the Great Illusion which is our manifested universe. When time, space and motion exist, there is no absolute rest or stillness. These are deep philosophical themes, but where one begins to talk about spirit as “darkness”, such themes must be brought forward if there is to be reasonably deep understanding.

70.              When all movement stops, “pure Being” is revealed. We may remember that this cessation of movement is exactly what the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali attempt to accomplish—the subduing and quieting of the chitta (mind-stuff) so that reality may be reflected in the chitta.

71.              From these ideas we can begin to generalize: motion is illusion. There is no vibration, light, sound, color without motion. All these are the fabric of illusion. When they cease, illusion ceases. Illusion, however, is relative, and does not cease until the universe ceases, which it periodically does—according to the Secret Doctrine. As for myself, I cannot remember when it last did. Can you?