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[9/14/2013 6:08:51 PM] Thuan Thi Do: http://blavatskyarchives.com/inner/innerno2.htm
[9/14/2013 6:09:13 PM] Thuan Thi Do: http://blavatskyarchives.com/inner/innerno3.htm
[9/14/2013 6:11:02 PM] Van Atman: http://thongthienhoc.net/truongbigiao/DaiCuongTiengVoThinh3.htm


THIS book will have been compiled in vain if the student has not become impressed with the necessity, first, of controlling the astral body: secondly, of gradually training it into a vehicle of consciousness, completely subservient to the will of the real man, the ego: and thirdly, in due time, of steadily developing and perfecting its various powers. The average worldly person knows little and cares less about such matters: but to the student of occultism it is clearly of fundamental importance that he should attain full mastery over all his vehicles — physical, astral and mental. And although for purposes of analysis and study it is necessary to separate these three bodies and study them individually, yet, in practical life, it will be found that to a great extent the training of all of them can be carried on simultaneously, any
power gained in one helping to some extent in the training of the other two. We have already seen (page 64) the desirability of purifying the physical body, by means of food, drink, hygiene, etc., in order to make slightly less difficult the control of the astral body. The same principle applies with even greater force to the mental body, for it is in the last analysis only by the use of mind and will that the desires, emotions and passions of the astral body can be brought into perfect subjection. For many temperaments, at least, a careful study of the psychology of emotion is of very great assistance, as it is clearly much easier to bring under control a force the genesis and nature of which is thoroughly understood. For this purpose, the present writer very strongly recommends a thorough study of the principles laid [Page 216] down in that masterly treatise The Science of the Emotions, by Bhagavan Das. (An admirable epitome of this work has been written by Miss K. Browning, M.A., under the title An Epitome of the Science of the Emotions.) The main thesis may be very briefly set out as follows. All manifested existence may be analysed into the Self, the Not-Self, and the Relationship between these two. That Relationship may be divided into (1) Cognition (Gnyânam): (2) Desire (Ichchâ): (3) Action (Kriyâ). To know, to desire, and to endeavour or act — those three comprise the whole of conscious life. Feeling or emotion is of two kinds — pleasurable or painful. Pleasure, fundamentally a sense of moreness, produces attraction, love (ragâ): pain, fundamentally a sense of lessness, produces repulsion, hate (dvesha). From attraction proceed all love-emotions: from repulsion proceed all hate-emotions. All emotions arise from love or hate, or from both, in varying degrees of intensity. The precise nature of a particular emotion is also determined by the relationship between the one who experiences the emotion and the object which is the occasion of the emotion. The one who experiences the emotion may be, so far as the circumstances connected with the particular emotion are concerned, (1) Greater than: (2) Equal to: or (3) Less than the object. Pursuing this analysis, we arrive at the six possible types of emotion-elements given in column three of the table appended. Column four gives sub-divisions of the primary elements in varying degrees of intensity, the strongest being at the head and the weakest at the foot of each group. All human emotions consist of one of these six emotion-elements, or, more frequently, of two or more of them combined together. The student must now be referred to the treatise mentioned above for a detailed elaboration of the fundamental principles set forth above. His labour will be amply rewarded.[Page 217]

Another valuable line of study, for the student who is aiming at self-knowledge in order to attain self-mastery, is that of collective or crowd-consciousness. By far the best book, with which the present writer is acquainted, on this interesting subject is The Crowd in Peace and War, by Sir Martin Conway. [Page 218] With wonderful lucidity and richness of illustration - Sir Martin demonstrates the following fundamental facts. (1) The great majority of men are brought up in, and all their lives belong to, certain psychological “crowds”, i.e., groups of people who think, and above all, feel similarly. Such crowds are those of the home, friends and associates, schools and universities, professions, religious sects, political parties, schools of thought, nations, races, and so on. Even those who read the same newspapers or belong to the same club form a psychological “crowd”. (2) Such crowds are in the main formed by, nourished on, and dominated by feeling or emotion — not by thought. A crowd has all the emotions, but no intellect: it can feel, but it cannot think. The opinions of crowds are seldom or never reached by reason, but are merely infectious passions which sweep through the whole body like an electric current, these frequently originating from a single brain. Once caught up in the crowd, the individual rapidly loses his power of individual thought and feeling, and becomes one with the crowd, sharing its life, its opinions, its attitudes, prejudices, and the like. (3) Very few ever have the courage or the strength to break away from the various crowds to which they belong; the vast majority remain all their lives under the sway of the crowds which have absorbed them. Our author then proceeds to enumerate and describe the various crowd virtues and to show that they differ from the virtues of the individual, being on the whole at a much lower and more primitive level. Every crowd, being unable to lead itself, needs and finds a leader. Of such leaders there are three main types. (angel) The Crowd-Compeller. He is one who dominates and leads the crowd by imposing upon it his own ideas by the sheer force of his own personality. Examples of this type are Napoleon, Disraeli, Caesar, Charlemagne. [Page 219] (devil) The Crowd-Exponent. This type, totally distinct from the Crowd-Compeller, is one which feels by natural sensitiveness what the crowd feels, or is going to feel, and which expresses in clear and usually graphic language the emotions of the crowd, which on its own account is inarticulate. Such men seldom think out problems for themselves and then proclaim their gospel. Rather they wait for the emotions of the crowd to take form: then they plunge into the thick of the fray and say with eloquence, power and enthusiasm that which people about them are dimly and vaguely feeling. Examples of this type are very common, especially in the field of politics, (coffee) The Crowd-Representative. Crowd leaders of this type are picturesque figureheads rather than individual forces. Typical examples are a constitutional king, a consul, an ambassador, a judge (at any rate in England). These men are merely the people, “public opinion”, personified: they speak with the voice of the people, act for them, and stand for them in the sight of the world. They must suppress or conceal their own individual opinions, and appear to feel as the
public feels, to act in conformity with the public wishes and sentiments. The above is the merest sketch of the leading principles enunciated in the extremely able book mentioned, and the student is urged to make a careful study of that work for himself. It will help him not only to appreciate more justly the forces by which “the public” is swayed, but also to assess at their true value many of his own beliefs, opinions and attitudes towards many questions of the day. It is clearly of the utmost importance that, in all his feelings and thoughts, the student of occultism should act deliberately and consciously. The Greek saying Gnothi seauton, Know Thyself, is a fine piece of advice, for self-knowledge is absolutely necessary to any candidate for progress. The student should not allow himself to be swept off his feet by becoming; submerged in a collective emotion — or thought-form, [Page...
[9/14/2013 6:06:45 PM] Thuan Thi Do: [Page 220] which forms a kind of atmosphere through which every thing is seen and by which everything is coloured, and which so manifestly dominates and sways the many crowds amongst which he moves. It is no easy matter to stand against a strong popular bias, owing to the ceaseless beating upon us of the thought-forms and currents of thought which fill the atmosphere: yet the student of occultism must learn to do so. He should, moreover, be able to recognise the various types of crowd-leaders and to refuse to allow himself to be dominated, persuaded or cajoled into accepting ideas or following lines of action unless he does so quite deliberately, and with all his own faculties alert. The influence of psychological crowds and crowd-leaders in the world today, as well probably as in every age, is very great indeed, and the forces they wield subtle and far-reaching, so that the student who aims at self-mastery and who wishes to lead his own emotional and intellectual life, must be continuously on his guard against these insidious influences. The present writer is of opinion that a study of The Science of the Emotions and The Crowd in Peace and War is an invaluable preliminary to the task of training and developing the astral body till it becomes a useful and obedient servant of the sovereign will of the ego.
One other line of study is also strongly urged upon the student, viz., that of the sub-conscious mind, today often called the “unconscious” For this purpose, as an introduction to the subject, The Law of Psychic Phenomena by T. J. Hudson, is recommended. In studying this book, the student should recollect that it was written in 1892. In the light of present day knowledge it is not necessary to subscribe wholly to Hudson's analysis, classification, or terminology. Moreover, in the opinion of the present writer, Hudson builds a great deal too much on his premises, straining his theories far beyond breaking-point. Nevertheless, the book is still of great
value, first as encouraging a healthy scientific scepticism towards accepting too readily plausible and glib explanations of many psychic [Page 221] phenomena, and secondly, in bringing home with great force the tremendous potentialities latent in the subconscious part of man's nature, which may be utilised by the careful and discreet student to considerable effect in bringing his own astral nature under control and, in general, purifying and building up his own character. There are, of course, hosts of other and more modern books which will also help towards this end. Briefly, Hudson states:— (1) That the mentality of man is clearly divisible into two parts, each with its own separate powers and functions. These he calls the objective and the subjective minds. (2) That the objective mind is that which takes cognisance of the objective world, using as its medium of observation the physical senses, and having as its highest function the reason. (3) That the subjective mind takes cognisance of its environment by means independent of the physical senses. It is the seat of the emotions and the storehouse of memory. It performs its highest functions when the objective senses are in abeyance, e.g., in a state of hypnotism or somnambulism. Many of the other faculties attributed by Hudson to the subjective mind are clearly those of the astral body, e.g., the ability to travel to distant places, to read thoughts, etc. Furthermore, whilst the objective mind is not controllable by “suggestion”. against reason, positive knowledge, or the evidence of the senses, the subjective mind is constantly amenable to the power of suggestion, whether from other people, or from the objective mind of its owner. With the help of modern knowledge regarding our astral and mental bodies, and the nature and use of thought and emotion forms, the student will recognise here many interesting and independent confirmations of what he has learnt from Theosophical authorities, and, as already said, he will be better able to realise that virtually limitless powers latent in his own psychological [Page 222] make-up, which he may proceed to use along lines laid down by occultists of repute: such as that of meditation, for example. He will also, perhaps, realise rather more vividly than before the way in which kâma, or desire, and manas, or mind, are entangled, and how they may be disentangled, to the great benefit and strengthening of both. It must ever be remembered that it is by thought that desire can be changed, and finally mastered. As mind learns to assert control, desire becomes transmuted into will, the governance then not being by external objects that attract or repel, but by the spirit of the man, the ego, the inner ruler. We shall now return to our more specific “Theosophical” authorities, and proceed
to consider certain other factors in the development and training of the astral body. It is obvious that the student should aim at mastering and eliminating certain minor defects, such as emotional weaknesses or vices. In this task it is important to recollect that such a vice as irritability, for example, which has become a habit through repeated indulgence, is stored up, not in the ego as an inherent quality, but in the astral permanent atom (see page 207). However great the force that is there piled up, it is a scientific certainty that perseverance will in due time lead to victory. On the side of the ego, there is the force of his own will, and behind that the infinite force of the Logos Himself, because progress by means of evolution is His will. A grasp of the idea of unity thus gives the man an adequate motive for the undoubtedly hard, and at times distasteful, work of character-building. However great the struggle, the forces of infinity being on his side, he is bound ultimately to overcome the finite forces for evil which he has stored up in his past lives. A man who seeks to kill out desire, in order to balance his karma perfectly and so obtain liberation for himself, may achieve his object. He cannot, however, escape from the law of evolution, and sooner or [Page 223] later he will be swept forward again into the stream by its resistless pressure, and so be forced into re-birth. Killing out desire is not the path of the true occultist. Personal loves are not to be killed out, but are to be expanded till they become universal: loves are to be levelled up, not down. The failure to realise this, and the tremendous difficulty of the task, when realised, have led in some cases to the stifling of love instead of its growth. But overflowing love, not lovelessness, will save the world. The Mahâtmâ is the Ocean of Compassion: not an iceberg. To try to kill out love is the way of the left-hand path. It is, however, necessary to kill out completely the lower and coarser desires; the remainder must be purified and transmuted into aspirations, and resolution. It is waste of force to desire or wish: the occultist wills instead. Will is a higher aspect of desire. It has also been said that we should slay the “lunar form”, i.e., the astral body. This does not mean that all feelings and emotions should be destroyed, but rather that the astral body should be completely under control, that we should be able to slay the lunar form at will. As the man develops, he makes his will one with the will of the Logos, and the Logos wills evolution. Needless to say, such an at-one-ment ipso facto eliminates such desires as ambition, desire for progress, and the like. The Voice of the Silence warns us that beneath each flower in the astral world, however beautiful it may be, lies coiled the serpent of desire. In the case of affection, for example, everything of a grasping nature must be altogether
transcended: but high, pure and unselfish affection can never be transcended, since it is a characteristic of the Logos Himself, and is a necessary qualification for progress upon the Path which leads to th...
[9/14/2013 6:07:34 PM] Thuan Thi Do: leads to the Masters and to Initiation. [Page 224]
[9/14/2013 8:21:56 PM] Thuan Thi Do: http://dieunhan.net/
[9/14/2013 8:25:16 PM] Thuan Thi Do: http://www.worldteachertrust.org/bk/ethericbody/
[9/14/2013 8:52:06 PM] *** Call ended, duration 2:49:26 ***