Monthly Archives: March 2013

Rebirth of Ostara

ostara1SPRING Equinox is the mid-point of a rising tide, the nights and days are balanced, and Western culture declares it the first day of Spring.

The spark of light that was born at the Winter Solstice has reached maturity, and from this point forward, the days grow longer than the nights.

Ēoestre or Ostara is an old pagan seasonal festival, and is the origin of the word Easter. She is the goddess who symbolized the dawn, the warm Spring sun, and much more.

Without the cyclic journey of the sun there would be no glorious bursting forth of nature at Easter-time. The Sun-cycle ushers springtime into the world above the equator, and the ancients regarded this as the re-incarnation season of the year.

“Just as there is a real Christmas—the time of winter solstice, explains the Theosophy School text, The Eternal Verities—”so there is a real Easter, a Sun-cycle, the time of the Vernal Equinox, on March 21st.”

In the legend, when the beautiful Goddess saw all this wonderful work of hers, she said: “Hereafter, every year I will have one day called Easter, after me. That day, all shall celebrate the awakening of Life from its winter sleep.

“Then shall all people be joyous and glad and give each other eggs as gifts, for the Egg shall be my symbol. So it is fitting, for all Life is first within the egg.”

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The Edge of Uncertainty

X-StreamNON-SEPARATENESS is the leading fundamental principle in the philosophy of Theosophy.

The illusion and “heresy of separateness” is a force that hinders our progress along the spiritual path. To win the struggle this influence must be eliminated from our daily lives.

“Close fast thy senses against the great dire heresy of separateness” The Voice of the Silence instructs the disciples.

A fundamental truth in Theosophy is that the “separateness we feel between ourselves and the world of living beings around us is an illusion […] In truth, all men are one, not in a feeling of sentimental gush and hysterical enthusiasm, but in sober earnest.”

“As all Eastern philosophy teaches, there is but ONE SELF in all the infinite Universe. “What we humans call ‘self,'” H. P. Blavatsky wrote, “is but the illusionary reflection of the ONE SELF, in the heaving waters of earth.”

The Ethics of Theosophy are the most important of all its teachings, writes Mme. Blavatsky: “The Ethics sink into and take hold of the real man — the reincarnating Ego. We are outwardly creatures of but a day; within we are eternal. Learn, then, well the doctrines of Karma and Reincarnation, and teach, practice, promulgate that system of life and thought which alone can save the coming races.”

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Dramatizing this lesson we chose a dance production conceived, directed and choreographed by theosophist Antonia Katrandjieva called “X-Stream” — described as “a ‘kinetic zoom’ of dance, video and theater that views the transience of the human experience through the lives of nine contemporary women living on the edge of uncertainty.” (Tickets: http://www.bam.org/dance/2013/x-stream)

“Shaken by a ‘Frankenstorm’ and sheltered in a toy house, they recycle their dreams in a mutual game of ‘heart-storming.'”

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“Victimized by ecological insanity and mass consumption they lose their senses and shut off from the outside world,” says Ms. Katrandjieva, “only to rediscover they are a link in the chain between self and other.”

“Destroy the sense of separateness under every form” says Krishna. “The Mind (Manas) which follows the rambling senses, makes the Soul (Buddhi) as helpless as the boat which the wind leads astray upon the waters” (Voice of the Silence.)

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The Rise of Modern Mysticism

global-consciousnessTHEOSOPHY was not brought back to the world solely for the advancement of an elite few. The ancient wisdom aims to help re-catalyze the spiritual progress of the whole of humanity.

The Theosophical Society’s most important mission according to the American Section founder William Q. Judge (Letters, p. 71), was to uplift the hearts and minds of all, free from dogma.

“The dance between change and continuity has been at play throughout history,” notes the Journal of Consciousness Studies. “Today, we see a rapid rate of change that is calling on people to consider their worldview, and to develop different identities and ways of engaging with the world.”

“Among those skills most essential for success in this new era of global connectivity will be greater cognitive flexibility [….] and a capacity for discernment that relies equally on intellect and intuition.”

“These skills don’t spring as much from what we know, but instead from how we know it, and how we view the world.”

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“It is clear that navigating life in the twenty-first century will require not simply the acquisition of new skills, but also the intentional cultivation of novel states of mind.”

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“The pupil must regain the child-state he has lost.”

But there are powerful barriers to inner change, all of our own making. They are our physical senses, habits, emotions, thought sensations, embedded worldviews. They compete for our time and attention, keeping us glued to the outer surface of an ever-whirling wheel.

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Rewiring the Brain with Love

STUDENTS of metaphysics and Theosophy are sometimes called to task for being too ‘intellectual.’

Some prefer the force of thought to hammer out truth, dismissing feelings and emotions as emanating from the ‘lower nature.’

But as W. Q. Judge wrote in the Ocean of Theosophy, “intellect alone is cold, heartless and selfish.” This is shown today by studies of neurological correlates in the brain.

Materialistic, intellectual data are stored in the brain, but do not stimulate areas such as the pineal gland — known by occultists to host spiritual impulses like feelings of compassion.

We are spiritual beings at our core, but our behaviors on this physical plane — just like the actions of rider and horse — are solely governed by how we have entrained our psychic and physical instrument.

“There are persons,” H. P. Blavatsky writes, “who never think with the higher faculties of their minds at all.”

“This is why it is so very difficult for a materialist — the metaphysical portion of whose brain is almost atrophied — to raise himself,”

“Or for one who is naturally spiritually-minded to descend to the level of the matter-of-fact vulgar thought,” she wrote. “Optimism and pessimism depend on it also in a great measure.”

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Heart of Light and Love

being-lightSPIRITUAL visions are usually the result of  long and toilsome discipline, cleaning up one’s mental, emotional, psychological and physical defects.

Krishna urges on his disciple Arjuna to the task, assuring him that “he who conquers himself is greater than the conquerors of worlds.”

But everyone agrees its no easy job. Entrenched habits notoriously put up a fuss when challenged. “If one directs himself to eliminating all old Karma,” wrote Mme. Blavatsky’s colleague W. Q. Judge, “the struggle very often becomes tremendous.”

 “The whole load of ancient sin rushes to the front on a man,” Judge warns in Letters That Have Helped Me (p. 20), “and the events succeed each other rapidly.”

Is getting to the bottom things always so difficult? After all, some people experience sudden ‘aha’ moments, intuitive flash awakenings that reveal to them instantly all their karmic threads, and even the future. An profound event like a near-death-experience, can result in immediate self-awakening, even physical healing.

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During the natural dying process occult teachings describe a lengthy (twelve hours or more) internal review of the life last lived. Knowledge is also gained during natural sleep, and the ancient Brihad Aranyaka Upanishad warns that a person in a deep sleep state should not be violently disturbed. “Let none awake him that sleeps,” it says:

… for he is hard to heal if the
soul returns not to him.”

Judge confirms that with karmic cleansing “the strain is terrific, and the whole life fabric groans and rocks,” but added: “it is said in the East, you may go through the appointed course in 700 births, in seven years, or in seven minutes.” If so, could enlightenment also occur for a person in the blink of an eye? Many near-death experiencers report that it does.

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