Tag Archives: animal welfare

Animal Souls, the Heart of Good

cow-and-girl

Cow and Girl Bonding

BETWEEN humanity and Nature, in a perfect world, mutual peace and harmony ought to always reign.

Mutual respect and universal compassion would be an accepted norm between humans and all beings in nature.

To those most mistreated of all, our helpless farm animals, this principle most urgently applies.

To this point, the keynote of Mme. H. P. Blavatsky’s worldview was the just and moral treatment of all beings in nature.

This principle was and is the First Object of the Theosophical  Movement, Universal Brotherhood.

Agreeably with Emerson, the foundational teaching of Theosophy as expressed in The Secret Doctrine, is “the fundamental identity of all Souls with the Universal Over-Soul.”  An acclaimed essay by Ralph Waldo Emerson “The Oversoul” was first published in 1841. With the human soul as its overriding subject, several general themes are treated:

“(1) the existence and nature of the human soul; (2) the relationship between the soul and the personal ego; (3) the relationship of one human soul to another; and (4) the relationship of the human soul to God.

Emerson

“Influence of Eastern religions, including Vedantism, is plainly evident, but the essay also develops ideas long present in the Western tradition, e.g., in the works of Plato, Plutarch, and Neoplatonists like Plotinus and Proclus – all of whose writings Emerson read extensively throughout his career.” (Wikipedia)

Plus, in The Secret Doctrine (Summing Up #5), the teaching that “everything in the Universe, throughout all its kingdoms, is conscious,” and endowed

with a consciousness of its own kind and on its own plane of perception.”

Mme. Blavatsky was adamant in opposing animal cruelty. She spoke out forcefully against sport hunting of foxes, birds and big game, and most strongly against vivisection, animals tortured in biological experiments. 

Animal-Testing

Cruel Animal Testing

Mme. Blavatsky’s words were penned over 70 years before the widespread animal testing in universities and commercial laboratories. Yet now, animal testing has been cited in impartial studies as being scientifically unnecessary.

“By 1996, ‘cruelty-free’ shopping had become popular, but it was also confusing, sometimes misleading, and ultimately frustrating,” according to the Coalition for Consumer Information on Cosmetics (CCIC) — eight national animal protection groups banded together.

“If these humble lines could [also] make a few readers seriously turn their thoughts to all the horrors of vivisection,” Blavatsky pleaded, “the writer would be content.”

vivisection

Animal Experiments

“Other permanent tortures, daily inflicted on the poor brutes, will” — Mme. Blavatsky predicted in her article Have Animals Souls? — “after calling forth an outburst from society generally, force all Governments to put an end to those barbarous and shameful practices.“

“Man is endowed with reason, the infant with instinct, and the young animal shows more of both than the child.”

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A Life Does Not Have to be Human to be Great

saving_lunaSAVING LUNA is an award-winning documentary produced by Mountainside Films, and directed by Michael Parfit and Suzanne Chisholm.

It tells the true story of a lone baby orca named Luna, who was separated from his family and tried to befriend people on the west coast of Vancouver Island.

SAVING LUNA is narrated as a personal story by co-director Michael Parfit. You could call it the director’s cut. Another version of the film, narrated by film star Ryan Reynolds (The Proposal, Green Lantern, and others), was released in selected theaters in the United States in late 2011.

SAVING LUNA has been shown on television around the world, but has not yet been shown on TV in the United States. The film will be made available to public television stations soon. If you think it should be on US television, click here and look on the list for a station near you to write and request that it be shown.

What does Theosophy say about
intelligence in Nature?

In her re-presentation of Theosophy, H. P. Blavatsky was not at all abstract when it came to standing up for the planet. In writing “help Nature and work on with her,” she was especially concerned with what she witnessed as widespread animal abuse and cruelty in her time.

Though not a strict vegan, Mme. Blavatsky was in sync with today’s new age ideas and unreservedly supported the healthful practices and spiritual values of a non-meat diet.  In her lengthy article “Have Animals Souls?”, Madame Blavatsky went further into some aspects of the matter than she did in her book “The Key to Theosophy.”

SavingLuna

Blavatsky’s radicalism reveals itself in her six-point “mission statement” in The Secret Doctrine (1:274), especially point number five in which she declared that “everything in the Universe, throughout all its kingdoms is conscious:

… endowed with a consciousness of its own kind and on its own plane of perception.”

Individual conscious awareness develops gradually throughout the kingdoms of nature, peaking in the human stage. Self-aware consciousness in some higher animals, Blavatsky writes in The Secret Doctrine (1:178), “comes almost to the point.”

dog and man

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Be Cruelty Free, with a Universal Compassion for Life

Compassionate-heartsTHE spiritual sun of consciousness manifests by degrees, not in humans alone, but the  legacy of all kingdoms of nature as befits the plan of their particular hierarchy — from atoms to stars.

Samhain, origin of Halloween, for example, is similar to the Gothic samana, and the Sanskrit sámana — the Hindu God Krishna — all symbols of man’s Higher Diviner Nature.

It is such universal spiritual forces that manifest cyclically during mankind’s darkest times. And the whole of nature, visible and invisible, benefits from such cycles, it is taught in esoteric cycles — wisely appointed beneficent spiritual impulses.

It is no less than in the Bhagavad-Gita (IV:31), where Krishna, the Higher Self of all human beings, assures his disciple Arjuna that he is continually reborn as a a world benefactor.

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It is only selfish Buddhas, the “Pratyekas”, he taught, who remain in the their selfish state of personal Nirvana and refuse to reach out to help others. Corresponding examples of such evil separateness can be found in all walks of life in every culture and clime.

“I produce myself among creatures whenever there is a decline of virtue and an insurrection of vice and injustice in the world,” says Krishna, “and thus  

I incarnate from age to age for the preservation of the just, the destruction of the wicked, and the establishment of righteousness.”

ξ

Our daily sleeping and waking cycles correspond to this universal impulse which daily transports us to our true home. Dreamless sleep is a state “in which even criminals commune through the higher nature with spiritual beings, and enter into the spiritual plane,” wrote W. Q. Judge in Three Planes of Human Life.

Animals have many dream states too, and dreamless states where they commune consciously or unconsciously in varying degrees, depending on the kingdom to which they belong, with the spiritual hierarchies of their particular degree.

“It is the great spiritual reservoir by means of which the tremendous momentum toward evil living is held in check. And because it is involuntary, it is constantly salutary in its effect.”

In an ideal world, perfect harmony and balance between man and nature would be the norm. Thus, the keynote of Mme. Blavatsky’s worldview was the just and moral treatment of all the beings in nature, the First Object of the Theosophical Society, Universal Brotherhood.

This foundational teaching of Theosophy is expressed in The Secret Doctrine, Summing Up #5, which states that “everything in the Universe, throughout all its kingdoms, is conscious,” and

“…endowed with a consciousness of its own kind and on its own plane of perception.”


Consequently, Mme. Blavatsky was adamant in opposing animal cruelty. She spoke out forcefully against sport hunting, foxes, birds and big game, and most strongly against vivisection — animals in biological experiments.

“If these humble lines could make a few readers seriously turn their thoughts to all the horrors of vivisection,” Blavatsky wished, “the writer would be content.”

Continue reading

Halloween: the Eternal Spiritual Fire

“THE Sun and Venus align themselves this week with the Pluto/Chiron sextile that is arranged in the background of our lives.”

“This alignment is in preparation for the Taurus Full Moon,” explains Lauren at Astrology by Lauren — a Theosophy inspired website — “which culminates on the 6th of November.” 

“Full Moons often bring things to a head, or unveils truths,” she writes: “this one also brings healing, or at least the tools to relieve ourselves of some serious baggage. It’s up to us to use them.” To read the full essay and next week’s horoscopes, visit the Articles and Horoscopes page.

Halloween, an annual holiday observed on October 31, primarily in the United States, Canada, Ireland, and the United Kingdom, is importantly in Theosophy understood as a harvest festival.

It is called “Samhain” (Summer’s End), and is rooted in Celtic polytheism. The word is also the Irish and Scottish Gaelic name for November. 

The Halloween time was the beginning of a “darker” season on Earth, with less sunlight and shorter days. But instead of the usual psychic horrors and scary costumes, we choose instead to reflect upon an inner spiritual sun, symbolized by a flaming candle placed inside a hollow pumpkin.

Candlelight Vigil to honor the departed in the BDR mutiny

Candlelight Vigil

“Today the season has morphed into a holiday celebrated with costumed children and treats, where children make their rounds like so many fairies and demons from beyond the veil,” Lauren writes:

“In ancient Ireland bonfires were lit in honor of the dying sun, and as a beacon to remind the Sun to return once more from the underworld, in order to light our days once again here in the North.

And so we continue to celebrate this most magical time of year with hope and anticipation of the returning light.”

Bonfire Dance

Bonfire Dance

The spiritual sun consciousness manifests, by degrees, and is the inheritance of all kingdoms of nature as befits the plan of their particular hierarchy — from an atom to a star — not humankind alone.

Samhain, origin of Halloween, is similar to the Gothic samana, and the Sanskrit sámana — which is the Hindu God Krishna, a symbol of the Higher Self, who incarnates cyclically at mankind’s darkest times.

“Even though myself unborn, of changeless essence, and the lord of all existence, yet in presiding over nature — which is mine,” Krishna says in Ch. 4 of the Bhagavad-Gita: “I produce myself among creatures…whenever there is a decline of virtue and an insurrection of vice and injustice in the world; and thus I incarnate from age to age for the preservation of the just, the destruction of the wicked, and the establishment of righteousness.”

In the Bhagavad-Gita (IV:31), Krishna assures his disciple Arjuna that as a world benefactor he is reborn to nature and humanity. It is only the selfish Buddhas, the “Pratyekas” who remain in the their selfish state of personal Nirvana and refuse to reach out to help others.

Our daily sleeping and waking cycles correspond to this universal impulse which daily transports us to our true home.

W. Q. Judge explains in The Three Planes of Human Life, that dreamless sleep is a state “in which even criminals commune through the higher nature with spiritual beings, and enter into the spiritual plane.” 

Animals have many dream states too, and dreamless states where they commune consciously or unconsciously in varying degrees, depending on the kingdom to which they belong, with the spiritual hierarchies of their particular degree. For humans

“… it is the great spiritual reservoir by means of which the tremendous momentum toward evil living is held in check. And because it is involuntary with them, it is constantly salutary in its effect.”

In an ideal world, perfect harmony and balance between man and nature would be recognized and practiced by all. Thus, the keynote of Mme. Blavatsky’s worldview was the just and moral treatment of all the beings in nature, the First Object of the Theosophical Society, Universal Brotherhood.

All Nature is Conscious

This foundational teaching of Theosophy is expressed in The Secret Doctrine, Summing Up #5, which states that “everything in the Universe, throughout all its kingdoms, is conscious,” and

“…endowed with a consciousness of its own kind and on its own plane of perception.”


Consequently, Mme. Blavatsky was adamant in opposing animal cruelty. She spoke out forcefully against sport hunting, foxes, birds and big game, and most strongly against vivisection — animals in biological experiments.

“If these humble lines could make a few readers seriously turn their thoughts to all the horrors of vivisection,” Blavatsky wished, “the writer would be content.”

Continue reading

Elephant Sanctuary: Stories of Joy and Sadness

FIRST is the story of Shirley and Jenny, two crippled elephants reunited at The Elephant Sanctuary in Tennessee after a 22-year separation.

The bonding was immediate, intense and unforgettable between the two former circus elephants.

Not a new story but worth watching again and again. So amazingly touching — but long after the cameras were turned off, the wondrous moments would continue…

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Lighted from Within

HALLOWEEN is an annual holiday observed on October 31, primarily in the United States, Canada, Ireland, and the United Kingdom.

Known also as a harvest festival, called Samhain (“Summer’s End”), it is rooted in Celtic polytheism. The word is also the Irish and Scottish Gaelic name for November.

It was the beginning of a “darker” season on Earth, with less sunlight and shorter days. In place of the usual psychic horrors and scary costumes, we chose instead to consider the symbol of an inner or spiritual sun, represented by a flaming candle placed inside the pumpkin.

Samhain is similar to the Gothic samana, and the Sanskrit sámana. The Hindu God Krishna, symbol of the Higher Self, notably incarnates cyclically at mankind’s darkest times.

Continue reading