Category Archives: Education

From God Who is Our Home

Buddha in the SnowKRISHNA assures an uncertain Arjuna that he has in fact lived many lives on Earth.

“Both I and thou have passed through many births,” the Master tells his disciple (The Bhagavad-Gita, Ch. 4:31). Adding: “mine are known unto me, but thou knowest not of thine.”

“It’s hard to believe,” writes the Blavatsky Theosophy Group UK, in an article titled “A Right Understanding of Reincarnation,” that until 130 years ago hardly anyone in the Western world had heard of reincarnation or knew anything about it.”

One reason for the ignorance around this teaching is that most people can’t remember every having a past life. This is because, in simple pragmatic terms, the immortal soul enters and uses a new body, new astral body, new personality, and a new physical brain. In the case of a new brain obviously it’s difficult to ‘remember’ a previous life never being there to witness it. 

Handed an empty photo album is a challenge to the incoming soul, hindering it finding a conscious connection to prior experiences and knowledge. “The new ‘personality,'” Blavatsky wrote (Key to Theosophy, Ch. 8), “is no better than a fresh suit of clothes.”

lineofsnowbuddhas

Even so, by a mysterious process, “the record or reflection of all the past lives must survive,” H. P. Blavatsky wrote: “for when Prince Siddhartha became Buddha the full sequence of His previous births were seen by Him.” In such a state he was able, she says, “to retrospectively trace the lines of all his lives.”

“This proves to you that the undying qualities of the personality — such as love, goodness, charity, etc., attach themselves to the immortal Ego, photographing on it, so to speak, a permanent image of the divine aspect of the man who was.”

The mind doesn’t fully incarnate until age seven, (Key to Theosophy Section 9). Thus, a child doesn’t feel the full weight of life and karma right away. As such, they are like karma-less “little Buddhas.” If not pressured to conform by parents and society, it is possible for them to express memories of their former life (s), i.e. experience “intimations of immortality” for an extended period.

KONICA MINOLTA DIGITAL CAMERA

“Spirit got itself entangled with gross matter,” Blavatsky wrote in The Theosophist, “for the same reason that life gets entangled with the foetus matter. It followed a law, and therefore could not help the entanglement occurring.”

It was Plotinus who said that “our body is the true river of Lethe, for ‘souls plunged into it forget all’ — our terrestrial body is like Lethe” (the “river of forgetfulness” in the Hades of Greek mythology.) Using a modern analogy, a new computer cannot be expected to recall the data stored on the discarded one, unless the old data is preserved and reinstalled in the new machine.

snowchildren

But this is what sometimes happens with children who die at an early age from accidents or illness, if they had created no basis for a prolonged after-death dream state. Nature is never wasteful, and the still viable astral pattern body is not disintegrated as with normal death.

The still vital and alive astral matrix is attracted back into the soul’s new body, with all its memories preserved intact.Thus in many cases such children are said to be born with two astral bodies, one new, the other old.

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Who is Malala?

Malala YousafzaiFROM earliest times, among all but modern western people, the teacher was accorded the greatest reverence.

Pupils were taught from an early age to look upon their teachers as second only to father and mother in dignity.

“It was a great sin, a thing that did one actual harm in his moral being,” explains William Q. Judge in Letter 12 of Letters That Have Helped Me, “to be disrespectful to his teacher even in thought.”

“The reason for this,” he says, “lies in the fact that a long chain of influence extends from the highest spiritual guide who may belong to any man, down through vast numbers of spiritual chiefs, ending at last even in the mere teacher of our youth.

“A chain extends up from our teacher or preceptors to the highest spiritual chief in whose ray or descending line one may happen to be. And it makes no difference whatever, in this occult relation, that neither pupil nor final guide may be aware, or admit, that this is the case.”

guruparampara2

Guruparampara

“Nor again does it matter that a child has a teacher who evidently gives him a bad system. This is his Karma, and by his reverent and diligent attitude he works it out, and transcends that erstwhile teacher. This chain of influence is called the Guruparampara chain.

“Thus it happens that a child who holds his teacher in reverence and diligently applies himself accordingly with faith, does no violence to this intangible but mighty chain, and is benefited accordingly, whether he knows it or not.”

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Kids, Cows and Hens: a Common Core

kids_big-bookWHAT is the real object of modern education, Mme. Blavatsky asked: “to cultivate and develop the mind in the right direction.

“To teach the disinherited and hapless to carry with fortitude the burdens of life?

“To strengthen their will — to inculcate in them the love of one’s neighbour and the feeling of mutual interdependence and brotherhood —  and thus to train and form the character for practical life? Not a bit of it.”

“And yet, these are undeniably the objects of all true education,” she insisted. “No one denies it — all your educationalists admit it, and talk very big indeed on the subject. But what is the practical result of their action? Every young man and boy, nay, every one of the younger generation of schoolmasters will answer:

“‘The object of modern education is to pass examinations’ … and thus train them for a life of ferocious selfishness and struggle for honours and emoluments instead of kindly feeling.

“And what are these examinations — the terror of modern youth? They are simply a method of classification by which the results of your school teaching are tabulated. In other words, they form the practical application of the modern science method to the genus homo, qua intellection.

remote-control-child

“Now ‘science’ teaches that intellect is a result of the mechanical interaction of the brain-stuff — therefore it is only logical that modern education should be almost entirely mechanical — a sort of automatic machine for the fabrication of intellect by the ton.

“Very little experience of examinations is enough to show that the education they produce is simply a training of the physical memory, and, sooner or later,” Blavatsky warned, “all your schools will sink to this level. As to any real, sound cultivation of the thinking and reasoning power, it is simply impossible while everything has to be judged by the results as tested by competitive examinations.”

When Education Goes Wrong

Full Title: “When Education Goes Wrong: Taking Creativity and Play Out of Learning.” Dr. Nancy Carlsson-Paige, professor emerita of Lesley University, writes frequently about the impact of media and other social influences on children’s lives and development.

Apostles-Learning-Center

Education Gone Right

She is also co-founder of Defending the Early Years, a nonprofit project whose purpose is to encourage educators to speak out about current policies that are affecting the education of young children.

In this talk, Nancy speaks about how educational institutions, in their attempts to meet the bureaucratic limitations of “Race to the Top” and “No Child Left Behind” policies, have eliminated creative play from early childhood education — resulting in the loss of problem-solving and critical-thinking skills in later years.

Child’s Play?

“Again, school training is of the very greatest importance in forming character, especially in its moral bearing. Now, from first to last, your modern system is based on the so-called scientific revelations:

‘The struggle for existence’ and the ‘survival of the fittest.’ All through his early life, everyone has these driven into them by practical example and experience, as well as by direct teaching, till it is impossible to eradicate from his mind the idea that “self,” the lower, personal self, is the end-all, and be-all, of life.

“Here you get the great source of all the after-misery, crime, and heartless selfishness … which as said over and over again, is the curse of humanity, and the prolific parent of all the evils and crimes in this life; and it is your schools which are the hot-beds of such selfishness.

defending-the-early-years

“The energies generated by the brain molecules of its adherents are all concentrated on one point, and are, therefore, to some extent, an organized army of educated and speculative intellects of the minority of men, trained against the … masses doomed to be vampirised, lived and sat upon by their intellectually stronger brethren.

“Result: The direct outcome of this branch of education is an overflooding of the market with money-making machines, with heartless selfish men — animals — who have been most carefully trained to prey on their fellows and take advantage of the ignorance of their weaker brethren!”

The Story of an Egg | PBS Online Film Festival 2013

“Eggs, as well as the chickens they come from, are both healthful sources of protein but ONLY if raised the way nature intended… Unfortunately, as illustrated in the video below, today’s agricultural model of factory farming has complicated what used to be a simple affair.” (Mercola.com)

Caging Kids

“All this is owing to the perniciousness of a system which turns out goods to order, irrespective of the natural proclivities and talents of the youth. The poor little candidate for this progressive paradise of learning, comes almost straight from the nursery to the treadmill…

“Here he is immediately seized upon by the workmen of the materio-intellectual factory … so that if he have any natural genius it is rapidly squeezed out of him… He will attain only sufficient knowledge of his own particular nation to fit him with a steel armour of prejudice against all other peoples [.]

“A proper and sane system of education should produce the most vigorous and liberal mind, strictly trained in logical and accurate thought, and not in blind faith.”

Happy Cowz

 

Inner Sensibility

Children should above all be taught self-reliance, love for all men, altruism, mutual charity, and more than anything else, to think and reason for themselves. We would reduce the purely mechanical work of the memory to an absolute minimum, and devote the time to the development and training of the inner senses, faculties and latent capacities.

kidsplaying

“We would endeavour to deal with each child as a unit, and to educate it so as to produce the most harmonious and equal unfoldment of its powers, in order that its special aptitudes should find their full natural development.

“We should aim at creating free men and women, free intellectually, free morally, unprejudiced in all respects, and above all things, unselfish. And we believe that much if not all of this could be obtained by proper and truly theosophical education.

– H. P. Blavatsky
Edited excerpts from:
The Key to Theosophy, Section 13

River of Lethe

Buddha in the SnowKRISHNA assures an uncertain Arjuna that he has lived many lives on Earth.

“Both I and thou have passed through many births,” the Master tells his disciple (Bhagavad-Gita, Ch. 4:31):

“Mine are known unto me, but thou knowest not of thine.”

The fact is most people don’t recall their past lives, because in every rebirth the immortal soul must endure a new body and astral body, a new personality and a new physical brain. 

Being handed an empty photo album is a challenge to the incoming soul, hindering it finding a conscious connection to prior experiences and knowledge. Thus “the new ‘personality,'” Blavatsky wrote (Key to Theosophy, Ch. 8), “is no better than a fresh suit of clothes.”

Being so, yet “the record or reflection of all the past lives must survive,” H. P. Blavatsky continues, “for when Prince Siddhartha became Buddha the full sequence of His previous births were seen by Him.” In such a state he was able, she says, “to retrospectively trace the lines of all his lives.”

lineofsnowbuddhas

“This proves to you that the undying qualities of the personality — such as love, goodness, charity, etc., attach themselves to the immortal Ego, photographing on it, so to speak, a permanent image of the divine aspect of the man who was.”

The mind doesn’t fully incarnate until age seven, (Key to Theosophy Section 9). Thus, a child doesn’t feel the full weight of life and karma right away. As such, they are like karma-less “little Buddhas.” If not pressured to conform by parents and society, it is possible for them to express memories of their former life (s), i.e. experience “intimations of immortality” for an extended period.

KONICA MINOLTA DIGITAL CAMERA

“Spirit got itself entangled with gross matter,” Blavatsky wrote in The Theosophist, “for the same reason that life gets entangled with the foetus matter. It followed a law, and therefore could not help the entanglement occurring.”

It was Plotinus who said that “our body is the true river of Lethe, for ‘souls plunged into it forget all’ — our terrestrial body is like Lethe” (the “river of forgetfulness” in the Hades of Greek mythology.) Using a modern analogy, a new computer cannot be expected to recall the data stored on the discarded one, unless the old data is preserved and reinstalled in the new machine.

snowchildren

But this is what sometimes happens with children who die at an early age from accidents or illness, if they had created no basis for a prolonged after-death dream state. Nature is never wasteful, and the still viable astral pattern body is not disintegrated as with normal death.

The still vital and alive astral matrix is attracted back into the soul’s new body, with all its memories preserved intact.Thus in many cases such children are said to be born with two astral bodies, one new, the other old.

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2012 in review

The WordPress.com stats helpers prepared a 2012 annual report for Theosophy Watch.

Here’s an excerpt:

19,000 people fit into the new Barclays Center to see Jay-Z perform. Theosophy Watch was viewed about 96,000 times in 2012. If it were a concert at the Barclays Center, it would take about 5 sold-out performances for that many people to see it.

Click here to see the complete report.

Life without Limits

Jennifer Stuczynski and Pole

HAVING the right tools for a job is essential, just ask any electrician, plumber or carpenter.

Equally important, is that the tools being used are dependable and in good working condition.

Just ask any parachutist, race car driver, mountain climber, or pole vaulter.

On the spiritual level, the purity or impurity of our bodily instrument and senses determine, for better or worse, our soul’s ability to express its unique genius.

Krishna explains this very simply to his disciple, the soul warrior Arjuna, in the 2nd Chapter of The Bhagavad-Gita where he says: “he who hath his senses and organs in control possesses spiritual knowledge.”

Likewise, the quality and adequacy of “the brain and body to transmit and give expression” to the immortal spirit, H. P. Blavatsky wrote in her article Genius, is “the result of Karma.” And offers an analogy:

“… the physical is the musical instrument, and the Ego, the performing artist.”

No skill of the soul she wrote, “can awaken faultless harmony out of a broken or badly made instrument.”  The physical “may be a priceless Stradivarius or a cheap and cracked fiddle,” she says.

Zoe Bloomfield with her cracked $7000 violin. Photo: Nick Moir

But sometimes physical limitations can be successfully overridden. The genius of Paganini, for instance, even burdened by a “cracked fiddle,” would still produce more perfect music from a damaged instrument, than could a lesser musician.

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One Tree

THERE was, during the youth of mankind, one language, one knowledge, one universal religion.

There were no churches, no creeds or sects, but every man was a priest unto himself.

No one can study ancient philosophies seriously without perceiving the striking similitude of conception between all.

Their exoteric form very often, in their hidden spirit invariably — is the result of no mere coincidence, but of a concurrent design.

Already in those ages, which are shut out from our sight by the exuberant growth of tradition, human religious thought developed in uniform sympathy in every portion of the globe.

The fragments of the systems that have now reached us are rejected as absurd fables. Nevertheless, occult Science survived even the great Flood that submersed the antediluvian giants and with them their very memory.

The Secret Doctrine, the Bible and other Scriptures — still hold the Key to all the world problems.

Let us apply that Key to the rare fragments of long-forgotten cosmogonies and try by their scattered parts to re-establish the once Universal Cosmogony of the Secret Doctrine.

One Key
fits them all.

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