LIGHT and shadow always appear together, and this is clearly as it must be. Our perception of everyday objects is dependent on those ubiquitously persistent, often paradoxical twins.
This point-counterpoint dance rules our everyday awareness. Shift one of the duo on life’s canvas, and the other balances with a corresponding change. Shadows lengthen as the sun sets, and stars shine as the heavens darken.
This phenomenon occurs because at the moment of manifestation the universe is pervaded by duality according to Theosophical cosmogenesis (SD1:15) — which explains why “duality supervenes in the contrast of Spirit (or consciousness) and Matter, Subject and Object,” as H. P. Blavatsky wrote.
Spirit on its own, like a horseless rider, is helpless on Earth say these metaphysical axioms, and a riderless horse similarly lacks purpose, direction, and love. “Though one and the same thing in their origin, Spirit and Matter,” say the teachings (SD 1:247), “begin each of them their evolutionary progress in contrary directions —
“Spirit falling gradually into matter, and the latter ascending to its original condition, that of a pure spiritual substance.”
“Both are inseparable, yet ever separated,” Blavatsky wrote. “Two like poles will always repel each other, while the negative and the positive are mutually attracted, so do Spirit and Matter stand to each other — the two poles of the same homogeneous substance, the root-principle of the universe.”
“On almost every page of the Bhagavad-Gita we are instructed only to direct our love to that which is eternal in every form,” as Blavatsky wrote in LOVE WITH AN OBJECT:
“… and let the form itself be a matter of secondary consideration.“
We must rise above the pairs of opposites, seeking to unite with their essence, the Source. Love and compassion are the keys that extricate our minds and hearts from external forms, from the myriad illusions on the lower planes of consciousness.
Time and space are also paradoxical principles. Pain extends our perception of passing time, for example, and the invisible air, gravity, and electromagnetic radiations fill the seemingly empty space around us.
Because we see through it, we believe that space is empty. Yet a fundamental principle in The Secret Doctrine (1:289), states: “there is not one finger’s breath (angula) of void Space in the whole Boundless (Universe).”
For example, we couldn’t see the words without this background page, nor could we see them if the words and page were the same color.
According to today’s scientific worldview “no energy at all is allowed to come out of your eye,” Psychiatrist Colin A. Ross, MD, author of a paper examining human energy fields says. Western science is “absolutely locked down on this,” and says that in science “no energy of any kind is allowed to come out of your eye.” Dr. Ross explains:
Although our concepts of time and space are grand illusions — “everything is relative in this Universe, everything is an illusion” Mme. Blavatsky wrote in The Secret Doctrine (1:295) — they are necessary paradoxes in our daily lives. Albert Einstein, who reportedly was familiar with Secret Doctrine teachings, agreed. His use of humor, compassion, and everyday analogies to illustrate the complex ideas of modern physics is legendary:
“The rocks and rivers around us are real from the stand-point of a physicist, though unreal illusions of sense from that of the metaphysician,” Mme. Blavatsky continues in The Secret Doctrine (1:329): “It would be an error to say, or even conceive such a thing. Yet from the stand-point of even the highest metaphysics,
“the whole Universe, gods included, is an illusion — but the illusion of him who is in himself an illusion differs on every plane of consciousness.”
If all we know are personal mental states, the contrast of Subject and Object will continue she wrote: “So long as we enjoy our five senses and no more, and do not know how to divorce our all-perceiving Ego (the Higher Self) from the thraldom of these senses — so long will it be impossible for the personal Ego to break through the barrier which separates it from a knowledge of things in themselves.”
Douglas Wallace is the author of “Everything Will Be All Right,” a gripping memoir of his growing up in abject poverty in the hills of Tennessee. In this clip, Wallace tells the story of how, at the age of 12, something mysterious and extraordinary happened to him while walking in the woods one day with his older brother.
Q & A
Light and darkness are often used as metaphors in philosophy to distinguish in our minds the ideas of ‘spirit’ and ‘matter.’ The twins are also represented on the reverse of the United States’ dollar bill, a pyramid with its capstone removed, replacing the cold stone of matter with an eye of blazing light.
Ironically, without money or adequate means, millions of human beings still suffer and starve, and an ingrained selfish materialism is wreaking havoc on our planet’s ecosystems. The symbol of the “All Seeing Eye” wisely placed there by our country’s Founders, lies fallow and forgotten on the reverse side of the Great Seal.
In a truly compassionate society hunger would be unthinkable. “Compassion is no attribute,” the Book of the Golden Precepts (Fragment III) declares: “It is the Law of Laws, Eternal Harmony —
“a shoreless universal essence, the light of everlasting Right, and fitness of all things — the law of love eternal.”
While it is true that developing countries account for 98% of hunger, right now millions of Americans are also struggling with hunger, the Feeding America website reports. “These are often hard-working adults, children and seniors who simply cannot make ends meet and are forced to go without food for several meals, or even days.”
Charter for Compassion
“It seems like only yesterday, but it has been ten years since the United Nations put forth the Universal Declaration on Cultural Diversity and made May 21 the annual celebration of diversity and dialogue,” the Charter for Compassion website reminds us:
“Article 4 – Human rights as guarantees of cultural diversity The defense of cultural diversity is an ethical imperative, inseparable from respect for human dignity. It implies a commitment to human rights and fundamental freedoms, in particular the rights of persons belonging to minorities and those of indigenous peoples.”
Societies become selfish because people don’t use their spiritual eyes, and money as ‘the root of all evil’ becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy. The motto “In God We Trust” becomes the ultimate betrayal — emblematic of our collective failure to assume responsibility for the consequences of our actions — then expecting a fictitious Almighty to fix it.
By refusing to recognize the inseparability of spirit and matter, fueled by reductionist science and religion, the ‘soul of things’ remains hidden.
This limited worldview determines what we believe and think about the world and therefore affects our moral values and behavior. It is not a pretty view so long as the front runner, the combative Eagle with its razor claws, determines our beliefs and decisions.
The current issues of the world, from human rights to climate change, confirms that choosing selfish material values, and ignoring conscience, leaves us trapped in perpetual cycles of crisis − terrorism, war, oil spills and climate change.
Go back to that dollar bill and turn it over. The Great Seal of the United States appears on the back, an ever-present reminder, as was said, of our dual human nature. The capstone on the pyramid is also known to occultist students as the spiritual “third eye.” It is also the old Egyptian “eye of Horus,” a symbol of power, protection and love.
We live in an industrialized, materialistic culture today. Yet individuals of enlightened nations also profess to stand for higher values — justice, freedom, equality and brotherhood.
Perhaps for the first time in recorded history we may be witnessing a shift to the nucleus of a universal brotherhood and sisterhood. A true new order of ages gradually arising to confront the challenge of separateness. For that, our hands must unclench, our arms unfold, and work together in harmony with our hearts. Here’s hoping…
With Open Arms
“Love can exist without form,
but no form can exist without love.”
– H. P. Blavatsky
LOVE WITH AN OBJECT