Monthly Archives: December 2009

What We Believe

BUDDHA never had any intention of establishing a religion 2500 years ago, at least not our sectarian kind.

Nonetheless, followers across Asia and India soon split his teachings into separate branches and sects, ruled by numerous lamas and monks.

The same today in Hinduism, dominated by a priestly caste of Brahmins at the top, convinced of their right to rule.

Buddha’s life and teachings showed humanity the way to conscious enlightenment through personal merit and compassion sans intermediaries. Humans were inspired to rediscover their inner spiritual natures, without regard to caste or creed.

The Buddha’s teaching of individual responsibility, and primacy of personal will should have saved the world from priestly dogmatism, but it did not.

Similarly, Christian religious dogmatism, with its god and invented savior, cleverly situate4d beyond our mere earthly domain. And this ‘son of God’ still has a very strong a hold on humanity.

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A Solar Puzzle

TODAY marks the Winter Solstice in the northern hemisphere, and the return of an ancient solar festival.

Significantly there will also be a total lunar eclipse, lending additional power and importance to this cycle.

The Earth, Moon and Sun will be lined up together with the Earth in the middle — say, between a rock and a hot place? ;)

“With Mercury Retrograde, and Pluto thrown into the mix,” astrologer Lauren counsels, “we have a lot of healing, renewing, and rebuilding energy.”

“It’s time to throw out the old and make way for the new,” she says.

It is both the Sun, Theosophy teaches, and our hearts, that are the great renewers. Each continuously radiates a mysterious force — indissolubly connected, they both have a similar physical and a spiritual function.

Occult astrology and astronomy identify many ancient temples, chambers and pyramids around the world as being connected to sun and moon symbology. Such sites and mounds are usually considered mere burial tombs by archeologists ignorant of the occult traditions.

Please note: This post has been updated and republished at:

Wake-up Time

The Mystic Power

THE oral teachings of Buddha were transcribed forming The Dhammapada, which means “the path of Dharma,” or Duty. Not meant to be a new religion, these were practical teachings anyone could understand and follow. In his first commentary Buddha emphasized that our thoughts have real creative power:

“ALL that we are is the result of what we have thought: all that we are is founded on our thoughts and formed of our thoughts.”

Depending on their source and intention, thoughts could also have destructive power, and the ability to deceive.  They could either be directed to service and harmony, or cause confusion and harm — both emanating from conflicting aspects of the mind. This is why the mind, with its companion desire, is sometimes thought of as a ‘two edged sword.’ Continue reading

Never Ending Life

LOOKING past our relatively short physical lives on Earth, Theosophy views the soul as eternal. Further, we don’t just ‘have’ a soul, we are souls, the wisdom tradition teaches.

There are many human beings who live to a ripe old age, and according to Wikipedia, the United Nations estimated in 2009 there were 455,000 living centenarians worldwide.

Methuselah is mentioned in the Bible as living 969 years. “But I have never heard of mortal man, layman, or Adept,”  H. P. Blavatsky says in The Key to Theosophy, “who could live even half the years allotted to Methuselah.”

“Some Adepts do exceed, by a good deal, what you would call the ordinary age — yet there is nothing miraculous in it, and very few of them care to live very long.”

She refers here to the Earthly body, not the Spiritual Body that high adepts have learned to occupy and control, thereby achieving self-conscious immortality — albeit invisible to uninitiated mankind.

Gautama, the Buddha, after reaching the goal of enlightenment, refused its fruition and remained on earth as a Teacher-Reformer, it is explained, and esoteric tradition teaches that he still remains in the world, invisibly watching over and protecting mankind.

Not only Gautama, but a “Wall of Protection” is built by the “accumulated efforts of long generations of Yogis, Saints and Adepts,those Buddhas of Compassion

who have woven for themselves glorious bodies in which they remain invisibly in the world, contributing towards man’s salvation.”

They do this “by influencing him to follow the Good Law and to tread the Path of Righteousness. Silently they impress the invisible atmosphere of our earth with their Ideation, thus keeping the balance on the side of right.”

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Astral Eyes

STUDIES have shown that many of us are so preoccupied with future expectations, we fail to see what’s right in front of us.

A well known attention experiment at Harvard showed that many people missed seeing a 200-pound gorilla walking through a small group of basketball players.

Not so for a clinically blind man, who clearly saw what he should not have seen. A surprised science writer, Andrea Gawrylewski, reporting in The Scientist, described the experiment and wondered:

“How much can you see with a non-functioning visual cortex?”

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“With lesions on both sides of his visual cortex,” reports a paper published in Current Biology, “he was able to flawlessly navigate an obstacle course.”

Biologists and neurologists are still searching for the hardware (neurons) responsible for this seeming impossibility.

This post has been updated and republished at:

Seeing and Believing