Susceptibility to Temptation

The dark jewel Temptation has the number 25 which means in effect minus seven or unwillingness to take any guidance. This is a seven year. If the planet offers us guidance in terms of ecological disaster we could listen, pay attention and try to find a solution. Or we could be tempted to do bugger all and carry on with our excessive luxury and consumption.

As a boomer I can say with a fair degree of likelihood that I will be dead by 2050. No male in my family has made it past 80 and I used to smoke like a chimney. I won’t be here to see the failed climate targets but I will experience the deterioration before I pop my clogs.

I believe the word “hack” is common parlance for finding a shortcut to at least temporarily “solve” a problem. They are good clickbait. Unfortunately, there is no hack, no shortcut for liberation and reduction in attachment.

In terms of life difficulties I am very sceptical about short cuts, am not interested in having advantage over others nor do I seek the lazy man’s way out. Very often the Elastoplast or sticking plaster “solution” whilst apparently expedient causes larger problems in the long term. Quick fix is an oxymoron.

There are some people who like, if possible, to find a low effort path. As a younger person I helped a number of people write their Ph.D. theses more than was perhaps appropriate. I was not in fact doing them a favour. They saw it as a quick fix and it was easier for me to help than to go thorough endless rewrites with them. Once you have written one thesis it is pretty easy to do others, especially in physical sciences.

There are others who instead of taking responsibility for their actions succumb to many excuses, the blame game and finger pointing. They imagine the world is against them and have a truly massive victim chip on their shoulders. “It is not fair mummy…”

Whilst is might seem expedient to succumb to the temptation of blaming others it rarely solves the character deficit such blame is meant to conceal.

Many people are very tempted by money, promised kudos and being all Kool and the Gang. If you look carefully, just like in cartoons, you can actually see $ signs rolling in their eyes in some cases.

The mutual backscratching, nod, nod, wink, wink, culture is seen as good business but it can mean yielding to temptation and evil.

“Go on old chap. You know that we are the best people to fulfil the PPE contract. After all we went to the same school as each other. I’ll return the favour in due course.”

The moral compass shatters when wanting to do a “favour” for a pal.

Temptation starts as the thin end of the wedge and in time it becomes normal practice. People can forget and grow ever more accustomed to doing dodgy stuff. People can become inured and tolerant of borderline illegal behaviours. They can find a whole host of reasons and justifications as to why it is kosher. The culture can become “infected” much quicker than many imagine. Academic bullying has been in the press. Is one supposed to take on the chin like a good little pleb? Cultural norms can be very unethical, tax evasion is OK provided that when you get caught you pay your fine, apparently.

Sleaze can become the “acceptable” norm.

I’ll make a postulate.

Anyone who is interested in power and power over is susceptible to temptation.

The type of mentality which seeks shortcuts and cuts corners can be easily tempted and swayed.

Those who are willing to put in a full and impeccable shift are less susceptible to temptation.

—-

Are you susceptible to temptation?

Mode of Approach Toward Externalization

(August 1946)

One of the most important things emerging from the theme of this amazing and imminent event (the reappearance of the Hierarchy on the physical plane) is the factor of the developments and the adjustments going on within the Hierarchy Itself in preparation for this happening. Incidentally, I would here point out that what will take place, and what is already tentatively taking place, is the externalization of the Ashrams. The great official departments, such as the teaching department or that of emerging civilizations, will not at this time reappear. Their activities will still, for a long time, be retained within the Hierarchy upon Its own plane. The first step is the appearance of certain Ashrams, controlled by certain Masters, upon the physical plane, evoking general recognition and guaranteeing to the public the fact of the Hierarchy and the restoration of the Mysteries. Later, if these steps prove successful, other and more important reappearances will be possible, beginning with the return of the Christ.

But in the meantime, great and momentous happenings are taking place within the Hierarchy and in relation to Its Membership. Disciples upon the periphery of any Ashram are apt to be unobservant of the training and attitudes of Those Who are senior to them in an Ashram; they frequently overlook the fact that They too – from the Christ down to the humblest initiate – are in process of steady and increasing hierarchical discipline, training and instruction. Because the senior disciples and initiates have reached a goal which has seemed for long quite unattainable to the average aspirant, it is assumed that they have attained; the fact that they have only passed a milestone upon the endless Way of Bliss is entirely forgotten. But, owing to the impulsion of life itself, progress ever continues; knowledge must ever be transmuted into wisdom; love must ever be accompanied by divine will; planning must ever give way to divine purpose; light must ever be succeeded by life; from the Hierarchy, the initiate must pass to Shamballa, and from Shamballa he will follow one or other of the seven Paths; the Path of Evolution gives place to the Way of the Higher Evolution; planetary recognitions eventually expand into solar contacts; the Christ-consciousness eventually unfolds into something so all-inclusive that we have as yet no word for it or any need of words; recognition of the Father and of monadic being causes all lesser recognitions to fade out, and soul-consciousness and progressive life in form are no longer goals but are left far behind.

In spite of all this, it is necessary to remember that the gain of all experience for ever persists, nothing is ever lost; that which life in form has conferred is still in the possession of the immortal spiritual entity; that which the soul-consciousness has enfolded and included is still the rich endowment of Being, centered now in the Monad; hierarchical experience is merged into the purposes of the Council Chamber at Shamballa, but ability to work in the Hierarchy ever lasts because the hierarchical constitution and institution condition all manifestation – for what reason this is so, no one knows, but so is the divine Will.

In synthesis and in the all-inclusive awareness of the great Life which enfolds all that is, everything (except what we know as evil) is persistent and for ever endures.

You will have noted (if you are true students of what I have given out to the world) that information anent the Hierarchy has fallen into three major categories:

  1. The work of the Hierarchy in relation to man and to the three worlds of human evolution.
  2. The interior constitution of the Hierarchy and its internal activity.
  3. Its superior relation to Shamballa and to extra-planetary livingness.

A great deal that has been conveyed to you in the two final categories has been merged by you into an interested but totally impractical realization that the Hierarchy apparently has a life of its own which proceeds independently of humanity and that it also has its own goals and objectives which are no concern of yours. These deductions are dependent upon your domination by the separative mind, for in reality the work and the activity proceeding in all three centers – Shamballa, the Hierarchy and Humanity – are merged, fused and interdependent; they are all mutually evocative and invocative.

The fact, for instance, that the Hierarchy is approaching closer to humanity and will eventually make an appearance upon the physical plane is due, not only to hierarchical intent, but to the demand of mankind and to the strong vibration and note which humanity has set up. To that extent, humanity controls some of the activities of the Hierarchy and thus precipitates action. At the same time, all that is happening can be traced to Shamballa, is inherent in divine purpose and is impulsed and impelled by Shamballa energy, distributed throughout the planet, via the Hierarchy in the majority of cases. Both the Hierarchy and Humanity are brought under the influence of extra-planetary forces which make their impact upon the planet, via Shamballa. Therefore, a great interdependence emerges, of which the head, heart and solar plexus centers in the individual man’s etheric body are symbols; their unified relation keeps the man functioning and demonstrating as a coherent whole at a particular level of consciousness. It is essential that students endeavor to grasp this, and so develop within themselves at least the rudiments of this synthetic unified grasp of living conditions and of a vital situation.

These instructions can aid all earnest aspirants and disciples to develop this type of understanding with as much speed and accuracy as possible. It is distinctive of the hierarchical type of mind: concerned with itself as a divine group, conscious of the pull and evocative power of the highest center, Shamballa, responsive to the demands of humanity, and sensitive to the “call” of that third major center through which the life of the planetary Logos expresses itself. The consciousness of the Master is therefore preoccupied with three main lines of responsibility, but only one of them is innate within the living organism of which He is a part; that aspect of His life is invocative in two directions: towards Shamballa and towards Humanity; to Him, the other two centers are evocative.

Today, human beings as a whole are so loudly invocative that the entire trend of the life of the Hierarchy and Its plans to date have been subjected to change, to postponement as far as certain interior and purely hierarchical determinations are concerned, and to a hastening of certain plans which were slated (if I may use such a word) to take place several centuries later than this but which – owing to the unexpected preparedness of humanity – can take place, not prematurely really, but securely and in the fullness of time; this fullness of time, as regards the particular planning with which we are dealing, is from now until the year 2025 A.D. – brief period of time indeed in which to see the consummation of the larger purpose of the planetary Logos, working through the three major centers within His body of manifestation. This purpose was threefold in nature:

  1. It involved the ability of Those in the Council Chamber at Shamballa to react to and absorb certain extra-planetary energies and to use them in an intra-planetary sense. It had not been anticipated by the Directing Agents of these forces that our planetary Logos would achieve a certain goal so early in time and space as He has.
  2. It involved a great expansion, numerically and in the consciousness of the Hierarchy. This predicates a great influx of initiates and disciples and a tremendous inflow of what is esoterically called “angelic essence” from the deva kingdom, under the direction of certain great Devas who have affiliated during the past two hundred years with the Hierarchy. This again had not been expected so early. The result of this happening has been that the door of initiation through which mankind passes stands wider open (symbolically speaking) than ever before, and at the same time, the Masters are passing with greater rapidity on to the Way of the Higher Evolution; this is due to the fact that initiates are fitting themselves so rapidly to take Their places, and disciples are moving on into initiate position so fast, that a great pressing forward has become legitimate.
  3. It involved, finally, a great awakening in the human family and a major spiritual reorientation. This again had been believed possible of accomplishment when the sun passed into Capricorn about 2300 years hence. But – it has already taken place and necessarily has brought about a basic adjustment in the plans of the Hierarchy and a renewed emphasis upon the purpose, as registered in Shamballa.

This, being factual, and the time ripe for decision, has caused an intra-planetary ferment and great activity in the three major centers. In the last analysis (and this is the factor of supreme importance) this development – this unexpected right absorption of spiritual energy, and this seizing of spiritual opportunity – is due to humanity itself; above everything else, it is the readiness of mankind for that which is new, and humanity’s determination to create a new and better world, adapted more adequately to their “renewed” spiritual nature, that is responsible for all the activity.

In this section of our training themes (if I may call them so) we shall deal primarily with the response and the subsequent activity of the Hierarchy in relation to humanity. This will take the form of a new Approach and a reappearance exoterically.

It would be wise, therefore, to keep the following ideas constantly in mind; I will enumerate them sequentially and for the sake of clarity:

1. The work of the Hierarchy, throughout the ages, has been fundamentally threefold in nature:

  1. A constant effort to set up a closer and more understanding relation with Shamballa. This involves:
    An unfoldment of the will aspect in conjunction with a full use of intelligent love.
    A constant adaptation of the developing Plan to the emerging, energizing Purpose.
    An increasing ability to transmit energy from Shamballa to the three worlds, from the cosmic etheric levels to the cosmic dense physical planes.
  2. To unfold – within the periphery of the hierarchical center – a life, a plan and a technique which will train all who find their way into an Ashram, which is in itself an aspect of the life of the Hierarchy. This ancient and intelligent effort has created and conditioned what you know as the Hierarchy. However, it is constantly subject to change in response to new situations and developments.
  3. To represent, finally, within the Hierarchy, the qualities of all the seven Rays, through the medium of the seven major Ashrams and their allied and subsidiary Ashrams.

There are many other aspects of the hierarchical constitution and objectives, but these three are the ones with which we are at this time the most concerned.

2. Today, the relation of Shamballa to the Hierarchy is closer than at any previous time, owing to the following factors:

  1. The one-pointed work and plan – pursued by the three great departments in the Hierarchy (the department of the Manu, that of the Christ, and that of the Lord of Civilization) – in which the three Leaders have unitedly acted as a Triangle of transmission between the Council Chamber of the Lord of the World and the Hierarchy. They are, all three, Members of the Council, though none of Them is yet working at the very center of affairs; in order to be of greater service in Their own sphere, They have taken Their stand upon the periphery of the Council’s influence.
  2. The invocative work carried out both consciously and unconsciously by humanity itself, which has been of such a potency that it has penetrated beyond the ring-pass-not (symbolically understood) of the Hierarchy to Shamballa itself, and has evoked response. This invocative work reached a high point of potency as a result of the world war (1914-1945) and its note and appeal are still persistent.
  3. The rapid development of integration among advanced people, which has forced many on to the Path of Discipleship, and therefore into certain of the Ashrams, and has likewise enabled many disciples to take initiation.

3. The recognition by a very much larger number of the general public of the fact of the Hierarchy; this has established a new type of relation between the Hierarchy and humanity. Hitherto the relation was dependent upon recognition, by advanced aspirants, of the nature of their position in relation to the Hierarchy; today, the recognition of thousands who are not in any way advanced aspirants or in any sense prepared for affiliation with the Hierarchy has created a new type of problem; it connotes to the Hierarchy a promising development, though at the same time an embarrassing one, requiring as it does a different mode of adjustment to human demands than that entailed by the admittance of disciples to Their Ashrams; it requires the attention of certain disciples and initiates in all the Ashrams and the ability of the Hierarchy to penetrate and dissipate the thick cloud of inchoate thought-forms which the bewildered, interested and curious public have created anent Them.

4. The use by the Hierarchy of the destroyer aspect of divinity, the first Ray, in such a manner that it is in fact a creative factor and one which, in the last analysis, not only releases the life from its previous limitations, but also calls in – under the Law of Balance – the building activity of the second Ray. The work of destruction is now practically accomplished and over, and the work of the Builders is beginning.

5. The new group of world servers has been created as an intermediate body between the Hierarchy and the general public. This group is divided into two lesser groups:

  1. Those disciples and workers who are already integrated into some one of the Ashrams.
  2. Intelligent and humanitarian aspirants and workers in world affairs and in all departments.

These two groups unitedly form a transmitting agency through which the Hierarchy can reach the mass of men with the new concepts, the techniques of the new civilization and the basic propositions under which humanity will move forward into greater light.

6. The recognition by humanity of its major problems, and the increasing ability of the general public to view these problems in terms of One Humanity, of the whole. This ability indicates to the Hierarchy the position of Humanity upon the Path at this time and the readiness of mankind for the new revelation – to be followed later by the restoration of the Mysteries.

7. The new orientation of the human family within itself to the concept of the One Humanity and the intensely alert spiritual demand which is today distinctive of mankind everywhere, and which has forced the Hierarchy to come to certain basic decisions and to readjust Itself to a much closer cooperation with the human center of life and purpose.

It is interesting to note (though it is of no immediate moment) that the work of destruction initiated by the Hierarchy during the past one hundred and seventy-five years (therefore since the year 1775) has in it the seeds – as yet a very long way from any germination – of the final act of destruction which will take place when the Hierarchy will be so completely fused and blended with Humanity that the hierarchical form will no longer be required. The three major centers will then become the two, and the Hierarchy will disappear and only Shamballa and Humanity will remain, only spirit or life, and substance as an expression of intelligent love will be left. This corresponds to the experience of the individual initiate at the fourth initiation, when the causal body, the soul body, disappears and only the monad and its expression, the personality (a fusion of soul and form) are left. This event of final dissolution will take place only at the close of our planetary existence, when the door to individualization is finally closed for a pralayic period and the Way of the Higher Evolution will be more closely trodden than the Path of Initiation.

Therefore, my brothers, the closer relation of the Hierarchy to Shamballa, the stimulation of its own interior life, and the readiness of humanity for revelation and for certain unexpected development, will condition the cycle into which we are now entering. This is, therefore, the most amazing period in the history of humanity. Added to this, it must be borne in mind that we are entering another greater round of the Zodiac, and this coincides with the lesser zodiacal activity because Aquarius governs the greater immediate cycle of 25,000 years and is also the sign into which the sun is now moving for a period of 2300 years – a most amazing happening and full of import in our planetary history; it is a coincidence of which our planetary Logos is well aware and of which He is making full and intelligent use. It is a cycle also wherein, for the first time, the three major planetary centers – Shamballa, Hierarchy and Humanity – are in direct and unimpeded relation, for today the alignment is correct and adjusted for the first time in planetary history. Even if this be only temporarily so, something has been initiated, the effects of which will never be lost. It is a cycle also in which the planetary Logos, having successfully taken initiation and thus affected His entire planetary life, has also established certain extra-planetary relationships which are necessarily incomprehensible to you and of no moment whatsoever to the individual human being, but which will eventually create a situation in which our planet will become a sacred planet. This process, as it unfolds and develops, will have a potent subjective and deeply spiritual effect upon every kingdom in nature and in the realm also of super nature.

Let us now proceed with our consideration of our theme, after our study of these basic premises.

————–

Excerpted from “The Externalization of the Hierarchy – Section IV – Stages in the Externalization”.

By Alice Bailey and Djwhal Kuhl

The Karma of Secrets

The first thing to say abouts secrets is that they all in some way itch, they itch at being. The second thing to say is that secrets bind. Secrets also have a tendency to infect and cause fear in their purveyors. They nearly always generate new Karma to be worked with and sometimes, though not always, have a habit of surfacing at the most inconvenient of times. Some secrets are carried to the grave. Organisations, governments and people use secrets when they think it expedient. Avoiding a problem today often stores it up for tomorrow.

People are fascinated by secrets. Fascination binds.

This fascination is by way of a glamour and an attachment. Because most know that secrets are “naughty” they come with a certain salaciousness and a sense of privilege. Some how the possessors and purveyors of secrets are better than others, they are in the know, others are in the dark.

Exactly who is in the dark and who is in the light, is a moot point, often unconsidered.

From a point of liberation what is most germane is their binding conspiratorial nature. If you share a secret, you share the breath of that secret, you conspire and breathe it together. Whispers in the dark, keep you in the dark, for fear of light.

The two major cause of secrets are lack of impeccability and lack of courage. If you are impeccable there is never any need for secrets.

Anything, any act, which binds you, is not good for liberation.

I suspect that there is not a being alive who has never lied nor never held a secret, at some stage or another. It is the Karma, the Dharma, of holding a secret that needs learned from. There is nothing quite like real life experience to teach.

The cure for secrets is impeccability.

It is as simple as this. If you are utterly impeccable you will never feel the need to lie or hold secrets. You may not feel the urge to spill the beans on everything you know, yet if the time to speak on it comes, there is no secret, no attachment.

People are attached to secrets. Beings often cannot move past a secret. They are log jams in evolution.

Often the secret, held deep and hidden, is no way near as bad as people have built it up to be. Its revelation seldom causes a tsunami nor the explosion of the sun. Some secrets are bad and these eat and itch at the being all of their lives.

Secrets cause suffering!

It is a matter for each individual as to which secrets they keep. One could try airing a few of these to see if God strikes you down. Theory has it He knows in any case. Much of the suffering associated with secrets is SELF generated for the SELF is what keeps or shares secrets, so as to bolster its SELF IMAGE.

As I have mentioned before, Karma is for learning by and from.

Have I ever kept a secret? Have I shared secrets about others? What have I learned through this? What am I still learning from this?

Karma and Punishment

It is a peculiar fascination of humanity, punishment. Where exactly this fascination has come from is difficult to say, yet it stretches back a very long way. People want to see misdemeanour punished and often severely so. This fascination is crowd pleasing and public punishment, a popular spectator sport. The concept of punishment ranges from the gruesome and capital down to the petty and malicious. The more public someone’s punishment, the better. Humans seem to like to humiliate each other.

Punishment can be corporeal, financial, sexual and psychological. Rarely is it motivated solely to educate. More often than not the motivation is wrathful and vengeful. Humans want to “teach someone a lesson!”. They want to get even and go one better for any imagined slight. People hold grudges for very long times and often wait to strike. Festering thus, they do not live.

So precious are some that even a hint of disagreement or differing opinion, calls forth punitive reactions. People are punished as a deterrent to relating, the hot oil is poured from the ramparts. They are punished for not doing exactly what someone wants. They are punished for doing exactly what someone wants. Some people simply punish life because they are pissed off about ever being born. Punishment takes on a myriad of forms, its basis is to hurt or wound another being. How this makes the world a better place, I do not understand.

The world has a big hang up about punishment.

Perhaps this harkens back to the Old Testament and wrathful Jehovah, but I suspect it predates that. Some people like to get punished because it then allows them to justify wrong doing. Some people enjoy being punished! People are odd…

Because people enjoy punishing others they project their fascination upon others. They think that others want to punish too. They cannot believe that other people do not act from the same orientation as them. Perhaps they project their punishment hang up onto God and even Karma.

Karma does not punish it simply shows cause and effect.

The emotional colouration that Karma is punishing people for past deeds, is a human invention. There is simply cause and effect. The universe is not an emotional punitive thing. It does not hold grudges, nor does it sulk.

Strangely being punished can cause a sense of camaraderie amongst the “victims” of punishment. It can bind people together against the “punisher”. People can bemoan that the universe, luck or fortune, has it in for them. They could also try to understand how they caused their present circumstance.

Many who are “punished” seek to pass this on. Punishment can cause more punitive behaviour. This is a part of the Karma of punishing, it is cyclic.

If one does not engage in tit-for-tat cycles of punishment this can cause bewilderment and an escalation of “punishment” until retribution is triggered. Bonkers!!

Justice, I hear you cry. Killing a murderer is a tad hypocritical.

I am not going to get drawn into social methods of government and law. What I wish to point at are the motives for punishment. People justify punishing yet this hides some pretty murky, often base and cruel, motivations. Behind the facade there is nasty stuff motivated by ire and bitterness. In order to be free people need to address and transcend this suffering which they have inside. That way they will cease to want to propagate it.

In many cases the punishment rebounds upon the punisher in some way or other. This is due to the intent behind punishment.

This is because the universe works via intent. If you intend harm with malignant motive, it reflects back. This way the universe balances itself. The universe is more often than not, simply a mirror. It does not colour what impinges upon it, it simply reflects it. The universe and Karma do not punish. The being, in effect, punishes itself.

In all journeys towards liberation, understanding motive, whether pleasant or otherwise, is a key to progress. If you can unpick and transform malignant motive, the world will be a better place and you will suffer less.

Do I like to punish others? What are my motives for that? In reality what have I ever learned through punishing?

When the Fruit of Karma Ripens

King Cnut allegedly tried to deter the tide and the waves. He was by legend unsuccessful in his endeavour.

When the fruit of karma ripens it can do so over a protracted period or very quickly. The fruit of karma can turn sour and maggot filled rather quickly. Its taste can be perceived as being bitter.

Karma is often symmetric. In that the time taken to build the karma may be reflected in the time of its ripening. Karma built up over years can unwind slowly, inexorably, and painfully.

Sometimes karma unravels the clever and cunning plans of mankind over a very short time leading to an apparent crisis in the lives around which the karma is wrapped and wound. The ripening karma can move like a rip tide through the lives of those who seek to ward off the ripening. Those who try to get away with it can find karma unsympathetic to their desires.

The only sure thing is that when the fruit of karma starts to ripen, it is an irreversible process…time’s arrow only goes one way…

Karmeleon – Vis Viva Chapter 7

For a heterosexual man there are two things that can cause great fear and strike blows to the core, they are linked to his ability to function sexually. Those are to question his sexual orientation and the parentage of his children. These things strike deep at something in him, because perceived masculinity is so often linked to sexual performance.

In one sense one’s children are one’s legacy of sexual activity on the physical plane; in a more metaphorical sense when a man is being creative he fertilises the world through his actions hopefully sowing seeds of positive endeavour, his accomplishments.

The challenge for the cuckold to his sense of masculinity is immense particularly so if he discovers this many years down the line. He has in effect and affect been living a lie for most of his adult life. The statistics suggest that as many as one man in ten is unknowingly raising someone else’s child; in these days of multiple divorce and remarriage the raising of another man’s child is overt as well as covert.

In another sense a child can metaphorically re-present a man’s purpose and its nurturing. Eric reckons that a man nurtures with his heart, it is male love and male warmth which gives a child security to grow and to test the boundaries. He says that this is so important and the absence of this is what causes harm, unfortunately though this lack is self-propagating in that the sins of the fathers are visited on the sons, cold insecure men raise cold insecure boys.

Eric reckons that this phrase has other meanings than the genealogical sense and that it relates to fate and karma. He says that we should be careful about using the concept of fate and karma because these words have been bandied about by so many on the dharma trails from Katmandu to Goa and back again. He does believe that the quotation below from the works of Alice Bailey is a particularly good springboard from which to do a double twisting back somersault into the topic though.

The Cup of Karma

There is a cup held to the lips of those who drink, by four great Lords of Karma. The draught within that cup must all be drained, down to the nethermost drop, e’er it is possible to fill the cup with a purer, sweeter one. The seven Lords of cosmic Love await the hour of filling.

The cup is naught. The draught within distils forth drop by drop. It will not all be drained until the final hour wherein the Pilgrim takes the cup. He lifts it from the hand of those Who, bending, hold it to his lips. Until that day the cup is held, and in inner blind dismay the Pilgrim drinks. After that hour he lifts his head; he sees the light beyond; he takes the cup and, with a radiant joy, drains to the very dregs.

The contents of the cup are changed; the bitter now becomes the sweet; the fiery essence then is lost in cool, life-giving streams. The fire absorbed within has burned and scarred and seared. The draught now taken soothes the burns; it heals the scars and permeates the whole.

The Four bend down and see the work. They release the cup of Karma. The tender Lords of Cosmic Love then mix another draught, and – when the cup is empty seen (emptied by conscious will) – they pour within that which is needed now for broader, larger living. Until the cup has once been used, filled, drained, and seen as naught, it cannot safely hold within that which is later given.

But when to utter emptiness the Pilgrim drains the cup then to the world in torment now he turns. With cup in hand (drained once, filled again, and refused to selfish need) he tends the need of struggling men who tread the way with him. The draught of love, of sacred fire, of cool, health-giving stream he lifts not towards himself but holds it forth to others. Upon the road of weary man he becomes a Lord of Power – power gained through work accomplished, power reached through conscious will. Through the cup of Karma drained he gains the right to serve.

Look on, O Pilgrim, to the goal. See shining far ahead the glory that envelops and the light that naught can dim. Seize on the cup and swiftly drain, delay not for the pain. The empty cup, the steady hand, the firm and strong endeavour, lead to a moment’s agony and thence to radiant life.


Alice Bailey; “The Rays and The Initiations” Page 762, Lucis Publishing Company, New York. ISBN 0-85330-122-0

The vis viva then picks an aspect of awareness to animate, from time to time this awareness incarnates and the power within has the chance to eke out a physical plane existence and face the challenges therein. Because of the deeds and actions in previous incarnations the awareness of the power within has evolved and it chooses a circumstance, a fleeting moment in the evolution of space-time to incarnate such that it can live out the challenges as a fate, within the context of an overall destiny. Eric finds it interesting that the etymology of sin may have a root that is of the verb to be or être, that as a consequence of being in carnation sins result.

He also notes that fate has an air of fatality about it, a sense of death. Sin and Fate are together. They are existence and death, being and not-being and he reminds me that death is both the end of physical plane carnation and more generally transformation through death of the old. Here in the sense of old perceptions and ways of being.

He says that he doesn’t like these two words ( fate and karma) much and that challenges are better, because these are much less judgmental and finger pointy, they have less baggage. The power within sets things up for it to experience whilst in the form side of life, it chooses the circumstance of birth, the country of birth and the potential capacities and abilities. As a direct result there will be sin, or being, as the aspiration and intent of the power within seeks to further develop its awareness through the process of life. He says that a Warrior treats his death as an advisor because by keeping death present it encourages one to live in what he calls the eternal now and to act to the best of ones capacity and ability at any given time, he says that this is impeccability. So in this sense death is his fate and it is to transmute, transform and transfigure.

This transmutation then is when the power within recognises that it has gaps in its knowledge and goes about finding this missing knowledge, it sets itself up with challenges in order to learn. In a very simple sense, the first acts of transmutation are to find out what those challenges are and then welcome them, to literally live them bearing in mind that they are gifts and not tortures.

The next stage is transformation, which is changing the shape of a life so that finally the power within has the island of existence in roughly the shape it originally intended so as to live out its fate for a given lifetime. He reckons that most people have forgotten what it is that they are meant to be doing and live in a dream. All one has to do is to wake up in the dream and then get busy.

The Greek word hamartia (ἁμαρτία) is often translated as sin, this means miss the mark. If one is missing the mark in living out a life that is not in accord with fate then that is a sin, or transgression against the purpose of the vis viva and one’s own power within.

The nature of one’s challenges called forth in a given lifetime, are karma, there is no such thing as good karma or bad karma, only karma. There is not a direct and linear cause and effect here, karma is more cyclical than that, though there are sequences and when mixed with others con-sequence. Eric sees karma as much more of a pattern woven together with challenge threads and themes running through a life, the circumstance for which may be set up over a number of lifetimes, there are many twists and turns in this as the vis viva goes about its business of evolving awareness as a whole. It is difficult to account for the hubris of mankind against the backdrop of cosmic Manvantaras and Kalpas outlined in the Vedic scriptures.

If then as an aspirant for self discovery one drains the cup of Karma, one is actively taking part in the act of transformation by conscious will, by grasping the challenges in a life one makes way for a wider living both in a current life and those that follow.

Eric says that his fate must encompass things that challenge his sense of masculinity to the core and that in overcoming these he will be exploring masculinity. He says that by choosing a father who was emotionally distant and later physically distant during a traumatic period of his life; he had no one to learn from. In a very real sense then he was making it up as he went along. The ability to cope with extended periods of bullying has given him a sense of determination and self reliance which he can draw on in times of trouble. It is his opinion that if one looks back at the sort of challenges and themes that appear relatively early on in a life you can get a picture of some of the scope of a fate.

Eric says that I should now talk in first person about the events of my second year in boarding school; I am a little hesitant to provide full details. A boy asked me to do something and I guess it was and is not, that unusual a thing to ask, but we were caught in the act. He had asked me to play with his balls. We were hauled up in front of the housemaster and asked to account for ourselves. The other boy was quite clearly nervous because it was he that had asked. He asked me to cover for him and make something up so that he came out of it looking better. I could see that he was in trouble. So I took the blame for something that wasn’t really all that bad; though at the time it was catastrophe.

The whole school soon knew about it and so, “Ali-homo” was born. Can you imagine how young boys might chant that at each other and how after not very long a time this began to wear a little thin? As it happens I was put up a dorm in my second year and there the taunting continued en masse. So I waited and waited, in the end I ended up setting things up so that I fought with each boy in turn, when I had them on their own. This strategy seemed to work.

Ultimately, I got Morris, alone, and actually messed him up to such an extent that the housemaster warned me about exclusion. How strange to be bullied and then punished for fighting back. Needless to say I did not want to discuss this bullying with my parents, most especially my dad.

“How is school?”

“Just fine. Did you know I might be playing rugby for Colts next year?”

Later that year we were on a family holiday in the Kafue national park, this is a game reserve in Zambia. We were staying in some rondavels that were quite luxurious, close by the Kafue River. The Kafue River at Kwafala camp is very broad with some fast flowing water and many large islands. It was great. I could go fishing. We did various game drives and I got to go fishing in small boat with one of the guides. They liked doing this as, should we be lucky, they had some food for their families too. I can’t even remember his name but he was a small man and my parents have a picture of him somewhere.

We worked our way upstream across the fast flowing part to an area of more gentle flow going along the sides of a large island across an open expanse of water to the big reed bed. There we started fishing with spinners in search of bream and pike. Together we caught four bream and five pike. It was fantastic my best ever days fishing. The bream he caught were good sized around four pounds each and would be great to eat. As we rowed back he pointed to the signs of hippos making progress underwater, small rings of bubbles and said that is best to watch out for them. We got back and showed off our spoils, the other guides were excited as was my sister and the son of other guests at the camp. A trip was planned for the next day.

Then we had bream, fresh from the brai, magic, true magic.

The next day we set off, my sister, this other slightly younger boy, myself and three guides, the short man, Richard and a taller older man. The boat was quite full with all of us, the fishing tackle and the big slab of concrete that acted as anchor. We rowed across the fast flowing section and then to the more open space of water heading towards the fishing fields near the reeds.

As I am remembering all this, I stepped outside our house and a squadron of nine biplanes flew over head, making quite a noise. They are probably from the nearby RAF base and practising for an air show, harkening back to a time of white silk scarves and handlebar moustaches, crying tally-ho and let’s get after the Hun. Quite a contrast the English countryside to the depths of the African bush!

Then it happened, we saw the edges of some of those bubble rings and the edges of one by the side of the boat. Next thing we were all in the water and the boat had overturned. I was a good swimmer then but only eleven years old. The older man was close to me and he tried to get hold of me, I pushed him away. He tried again and I swam away. I saw him drift off in the current. He was drowning. Calling this back to memory is hard, because after the event I was wracked with guilt that perhaps I could have saved him, I had a bronze medallion life saving badge after all!!

I am crying slightly now at the thought of it all. Seeing someone drift away is not easy. We all swam to the boat; there were now five of us. Together we tried to right the boat and got it about halfway, it then bounced back and I was hit on the head. This made me a little dizzy. We tried again but that anchor was now holding the boat in place. I said to the guides that we weren’t really helping and that if we swam to the nearby island we would wait there whilst they tried righting the boat without hindrance. They sort of agreed but it was difficult to know who was in charge. So we swam towards the island. I remember thinking it strange that swimming was a lot harder in my new Clark’s Attackers, but that I might need my shoes later. As we neared the shore my sister and the other boy headed for a different landing point than mine. We got to the shore and hauled ourselves up onto land and into the bush.

We watched as they tried to right the boat a number of times, the sun now lowering across the water. They were getting tired. They gave up and came to join us on the island. Richard was the stronger swimmer of the two and headed towards where my sister had landed. The shorter man followed, my shorter route, splashing quite a lot as he swam. All of a sudden he was pulled under the water, he started thrashing about a little more wildly, surfaced once and then the water was silent. I knew what had happened; there are crocodiles in these parts. He had followed the path that I had taken just a few moments earlier. The four of us stood dumbstruck looking west at the empty river with the upturned boat and the now setting sun.

For an eternity we stood and stared. Richard seemed to be very, very far away. I said that we needed to do something because they could not hear us back at camp from here. We needed to let them know and that we must get moving soon as it would soon be dark. The only way was to make our way between the islands until such time as we were close enough to shout for help. So we began. Some of the islands were separated by shallow water, some were waist deep and others we had to swim a little in between.

So we did it, each entrance into the water tinged by the memory of what had just happened and the fear. I don’t to this day know whether the two other children knew what had happened, they were just glad to be on the move. We got to a small uncovered island about two hundred metres from camp, nearby the fast flowing section. We reckoned that there wouldn’t be hippos or crocs there and shouted across to the camp for help. We told them what had happened and it began; the ululation of an African woman at the loss of her man; such a haunting sound to accompany the swift and velvet fall of an African dusk.

There we were, then, cold and wet, in complete darkness on a small island in the middle of a game park, stranded. There was no other boat at the camp. The bush is alive at night. All we had for comfort was each other and the lights of the camp distant across the water and that terrible ululation. We heard that my father was going to drive to one of the other camps in search of a boat and that they would try to get to us, they had heard of a canoe and transporter some distance away.

I think soon after mid-night my father and the other boy’s father got in the canoe and made their way towards our shouts across the water to us with some food and clothing. It wasn’t an easy trip but it was with the current. It would not be wise to go back at night. They landed and we ate. We had a gun now. I remember that dawn very well, the mist rising off the river and that grey, grey stretching your arms and legs, yawning beginning to the day. We saw the canoe and were not quite as reassured as we once were. In the past a hippo had taken a bite out of it. We were ferried across and boy, were we glad. They took the thorn out of my sister’s foot and we were soon to leave. For some reason my mother was no longer keen on game parks. We would have to report the incident to the police and as we would reach the game park borders first, it was down to us to do that.

We got to the gate and went in to explain what had happened to the African policeman there. The dry mud brick hut was both gate house for the game park and police station. I had to give a statement. As I began to talk it was noticeable that the man could not really write. So I gave my first statement to the police in my scruffy handwriting all the while thinking that they might lock me up for not saving that man and thinking that it was weird that here I was writing, what were the grown ups doing why weren’t they doing all this? It was down to me I had to do it. Like a good public school boy I owned up. Nothing happened to me.

When we got back to Kabwe the story quickly did the rounds of the expat community and filtered down to the children. For a while we were quite famous locally, the grown ups though all had a shudder when they thought of it.

Eric says that it was my fate to be in that place at that time and to see that males who are the masculine expression of the vis viva cannot always be relied on and that I as a proto male would have to take charge from time to time. This was a part of my karma which left me with a great fear of swimming in open water and the sense that something unseen and terrible was lurking there. He reminds me that I nearly had a heart attack when that small fish followed me in Italy and that it took nearly twenty years before I could swim out of my depth in tropical waters.

He says that the burden of guilt for letting that man drown stayed with me for many years, unspoken, leaving me with a sense that I could have and should have, done more to save him.

Soon it was time to go back to school and I was dropped back into my original dorm. It was much better here and there was less bullying and conflict.

Trying to Get Away with It and Karma

In the past the Roman Catholic Church and the Pope in particular had a nice little side hustle. This was to sell indulgences to rich people who were filling their pants at the prospect of purgatory and hell because they had not adhered to creed and had been naughty boys and girls. The logic was pay some money and get away with your sins, have a better time in the afterlife for quite a few quid. Nowhere in scripture is a papal get out of jail free card mentioned. It certainly showed some business acumen. The geezer who bought the indulgence could not exactly come back and complain asking for his money back.

This “trying to get away with it” mentality is pervasive in our times. Whilst we may not be held to account by other humans and thereby appear to have gotten away with it {phew}. Have we fooled the universe, have we outsmarted karma? Trying to outsmart karma is like raising one’s middle finger to karma and saying, “look at me I am way cleverer than you are, you imaginary thing. You, karma, do not exist. Only brown people, Asians and hippies believe in you! I can have life on my own terms. I am in control of this life!”

We each of us place our bets as to which world model applies. When the croupier calls time and death taps us on the shoulder pointing at his diary to the slot with our name on it, we get to find out if we backed the right horse.

In our times passing the buck and pointing the finger of blame are ways of trying to refuse responsibility for our own actions. Trouble is if that works once, it becomes habitual, and  we sink deeper into the mire of excuse. Our spine shrivels and we can no longer walk tall. Excuse never changes deed, even if we pull the wool over the eyes of our fellow humans. Shabby remains shabby in the all seeing eyes of karma and the universe. There can be desperation as the onion layers of excuse start to unravel. Moral compasses these days are not as reliable as they once were.

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Do you own and take responsibility for your own words and deeds?

Or do you have a trying to get away with it mentality?

Dharma of the Day

self importance is a root cause of suffering

both for the self

and the others you inflict it upon

your self image is a pack of lies

insistence upon its reality

causes suffering and impedes evolution

if you are sure you are not being separative

then in your conviction

you most certainly are

unless omniscience is a quality you own

behaving as if you have the consciousness of a God

is inconsistent with reality

the wisdom of humanity

is an oxymoron

in nearly every case

pride and arrogance are also

root causes of suffering

they stem from the same germ

the desire for and enactment of revenge

not only causes dual suffering

it is one of the most karmically damaging things a being can do

clinging in all its forms suffocates

better to release a dove from a cage

than to watch it wither and die

living a redemptive life

not only eases suffering

but gains karmic merit

whilst karmic debt persists

enlightenment is not possible

and rebirth consequently inevitable

power over another being is an illusion

such illusory power is corporeal

and therefore has no reality

at the level of the dreamer there is no such thing

the primal root of all suffering

is individuating identity upon carnation

all beings resent this

few have sufficient knowledge to see this

emptying the cup of karma removes all suffering

this is the way to Bodhi mind

and eventual liberation

actions beget karma

redemptive action works this off

there is no other way

Resentment and a Moment of Clarity

“Why was he born so beautiful
Why was he born at all
He’s no bloody use to anyone
He’s no bloody use at all”

I think it reasonable to say that there is a great deal of resentment in the world today and much of that can be found amongst those who have little, in reality, to resent. Resentment can come from thwarted ambition and when life does not fulfil the conditions which we impose upon it. It can walk hand in hand with a “It is not fair mummy” mentality. It can stem from unmet expectations when a sense of entitlement is not sufficiently fulfilled. It can arise in envy and jealousy. People can resent having to put some effort in, some work and this can cause resentment.

For example, I published six academic articles during my Ph.D. That was from only around nine months actual experimental time. I used to party a lot {vast amount} and it appeared to others that it was all too easy for me. I know that some resented me for this. “He smokes weed and gets pissed it is not fair that he is publishing and I am not.”

Resentment is an astral-emotional thing, it emits negative thoughts and energies at the object of resentment and that is in many cases a fellow human being. Some people are born with a metaphorical chip on their shoulder and resent the entire world, others are spoiled rotten and when they do not get their way they fall into resentful sulking.

For most of my young life, I was pretty good at most things, though never top of the class. I put in enough effort and willingly so but never really excelled. In school I captained the rugby second fifteen and played either hooker or open side flanker. My friend captained the first fifteen as hooker. He played for South-east England at that position and even had an England trial. He was head boy. I used to help him with his homework {he was not a scholar} and many lunch times we would squat 100kg together inter alia. {Maybe this is why I now have osteo-arthritis.} When there was a crunch match, I would be drafted in to the first team as flanker. I was fast and could give the wings a good run for their money, but not beat them.

I never really resented much in life. Do your best and see what happens without obsessing was pretty much my way of looking at things. I have never really been jealous beyond a hint. That is perhaps because most things came relatively easy to me, all I had to do was concentrate and put the effort in. At university I put in a good shift in my final year so as to remain a student. If Sue Tollerfield had not gotten one more mark out of a thousand than me, the trajectory of my life would have been entirely different. On such little things a fate hangs.

If one accepts life as it is rather than how we imagine it should be or ought to be, there is no resentment. The universe does not give one hoot about the conditions we impose upon it in our “minds” and “emotions”. Our made up imaginary conditions are the cause of our own resentment; the universe is not to blame and it is not my fault if you resent me.

One fine day I was contemplating the above rugby song. I had a moment of clarity.  The one thing that I resented the most was being born. “Oh shit, not into that meat again. Do I have to?” It was a very real sensation I resented my own in-carn-ation. In that moment much fell off my shoulders and I was as crystal clear as can be, reincarnation happens.

I’ll posit something, on one level we each have a resentment about having to take on a meaty vehicle again and again and face all the challenges inherent with being corporeal. We may not be sufficiently aware to feel this.

It not my fault that you incarnated in this lifetime, you are the one responsible for that!!  

It is not my fault if you reincarnate again with accumulated and accrued karma in a few hundred years or so.

If you have failed to acquire some karmic merit as opposed acquiring to material things, I have not advised you that this is a good thing to do.

If you want to blame someone for your next meaty sojourn, look in a mirror.

Blame and resentment are cut from the same cloth and are in many ways cousins…they are both toxic emotions which “poison” those who hold them close and imagine themselves justified in the expression of these unpleasant forms.

Resentment can be full of bile, blame full of ire. Neither makes the world a better more harmonious place.

“Do your best and see what happens without obsessing…”