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An Outline of Theosophy

By

Charles Webster Leadbeater

 

 

Charles Webster Leadbeater

1858? - 1934

 

 

The Wider Outlook

 

 

A little thought will soon show us what a radical change is introduced into the life of the man who realises that his physical life is nothing but a day at school, and that his physical body is merely a temporary vesture assumed for the purpose of learning through it. He sees at once that this purpose of “learning the lesson” is the only one of any importance, and that the man who allows himself to be diverted from that purpose by any consideration is acting with inconceivable stupidity.

 

To him who knows the truth, the life of the ordinary person devoted exclusively to physical objects, to the pursuit of wealth and fame, appears the merest child’s play – a senseless sacrifice of all that is really worth having for a few moments gratification of the lower parts of man’s nature.

 

The student “sets his affection on things above, and not on things of the earth”, not only because he sees this to be a right course of action, but because he realises very clearly the valuelessness of these things of earth.

 

He always tries to take the higher point of view, for he sees that the lower is utterly unreliable – that the lower desires and feelings gather round him like a dense fog, and make it impossible for him to see anything clearly from that level.

 

Yet even when he is thoroughly convinced that the higher course is always the right one, and when he is fully determined to follow it, he will nevertheless sometimes encounter very strong temptations to take the lower course, and will be sensible of a great struggle within him. He will discover that there is “a law of the members warring against the law of the mind”, as St. Paul says, so that “those things that I would, I do not, and the thing which I would not, that I do”.

 

Now good religious people often make the most serious mistakes about this interior struggle which we have all felt to a greater or less extent. They usually accept one or two theories on the subject.

 

Either they suppose that the lower promptings come from exterior tempting demons, or else they mourn over the terrible wickedness and blackness of their hearts, in that such fathomless evil still exists within them. Indeed, many of the best men and women go through a vast amount of totally unnecessary suffering on this account.

 

The first point to have clearly in mind if one wishes to understand this matter is that the lower desire is not in truth our desire at all.  Nor is it the work of some demon trying to destroy our souls. It is true that there sometimes are evil entities which are attracted by the base thought in man, and intensify it by their action; but such entities are man-made, everyone of them, and impermanent. 

 

They are merely artificial forms called into existence by the thought of other evil men, and they have a period of what seems almost like life, proportioned to the strength of the thought that created them.But the undesirable prompting within us usually comes from quite another source.

 

It has been mentioned how man draws round him vestures of matter at different levels, in order that he may descend into incarnation. But this matter is not dead matter (indeed, occult science teaches us that there is no such thing as dead matter anywhere), but it is instinct with life; though it is life at a stage of evolution much earlier than our own – so much earlier that it is still moving on a downward course into lower matter, instead of rising again out of lower matter into higher.

 

Consequently its tendency is always to press downwards towards the grosser material and the coarser vibrations which mean progress for it, but retrogression for us; and so it happens that the interest of the true man sometimes comes into collision with that of the living matter in some of his vehicles.

 

That is a very rough outline of the explanation of the curious internal strife that we sometimes feel – a strife which has suggested to the poetic minds the idea of good and evil angels in conflict over the soul of man. A more detailed account will be found in The Astral Plane, p. 40. 

 

But in the meantime it is important that the man should realise that he is the higher force, always moving towards and battling for good, while this lower force is not he at all, but only an uncontrolled fragment of one of his lower vehicles.

 

He must learn to control it, to dominate it absolutely, and to keep it in order; but he should not therefore, think of it as evil, but as an outpouring of the Divine power moving on its orderly course, though that course in this instance happens to be downwards into matter, instead of upwards and away from it, as ours is.

 

 

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Ten Benefits of Studying the Blavatskyan Theosophical Teachings

 

Studying the Blavatskyan Theosophical teachings offers numerous benefits that can greatly enrich one's understanding of spirituality, philosophy, and the nature of reality.  Theosophy, as defined by the writings of Helena Petrovna Blavatsky, has had a profound impact on the spiritual and philosophical landscape of the modern world. Blavatsky's teachings draw from a wide range of religious and philosophical traditions, including Hinduism, Buddhism, and Western esotericism, and present a comprehensive worldview that addresses fundamental questions about existence, consciousness, and the cosmos.

 

Here are ten benefits of studying the Blavatskyan Theosophical Teachings

 

1. Exploration of Esoteric Wisdom

One of the primary benefits of studying the Blavatskyan Theosophical teachings is the opportunity to explore esoteric wisdom that is often not readily accessible in mainstream religious or philosophical traditions. Blavatsky's writings delve into the esoteric teachings of ancient cultures and mystery schools, shedding light on profound spiritual truths that have been passed down through the ages. By delving into these esoteric teachings, students of Theosophy can gain insights into the nature of consciousness, the structure of the cosmos, and the evolution of the soul or immortal self.

 

2. Synthesis of Eastern and Western Philosophy

Blavatsky's Theosophical teachings synthesize elements of Eastern and Western philosophy, offering a comprehensive framework that integrates concepts from diverse cultural and religious traditions. This synthesis provides students with a broader perspective on philosophical and spiritual thought, allowing them to see the underlying unity of seemingly disparate belief systems. By studying Theosophy, individuals can gain a deeper appreciation for the universal principles that underlie all wisdom traditions, fostering a sense of unity and interconnectedness with the world's spiritual heritage.

 

3. Understanding of Universal Brotherhood

Central to Blavatsky's Theosophical teachings is the principle of universal brotherhood, which emphasizes the essential unity of all beings and the interconnectedness of life. By studying Theosophy, individuals can develop a profound understanding of the interconnected nature of existence, recognizing that all living beings are fundamentally linked and that compassion and empathy are essential for the evolution of humanity. This understanding can lead to a greater sense of empathy, kindness, and social responsibility, fostering a more harmonious and compassionate society.

 

4. Insight into the Nature of Reality

The Blavatskyan Theosophical teachings offer profound insights into the nature of reality, consciousness, and the unseen dimensions of existence. Through the study of Theosophy, individuals can explore concepts such as the multi-dimensional nature of the universe, the existence of subtle energy realms, and the interconnectedness of the material and spiritual planes. This exploration can lead to a deeper understanding of the nature of reality beyond the limitations of the physical senses, opening up new vistas of perception and understanding.

 

5. Personal Spiritual Growth

Studying the Theosophical teachings can be a transformative journey that facilitates personal spiritual growth and self-discovery. Blavatsky's writings offer practical guidance for inner development, including meditation practices, ethical principles, and the cultivation of spiritual virtues. By applying these teachings to their lives, individuals can experience profound personal transformation, leading to greater self-awareness, inner peace, and a sense of purpose and meaning.

 

6. Ethical and Moral Guidance

The Theosophical teachings provide a comprehensive ethical and moral framework that can guide individuals in their personal and social interactions. Blavatsky emphasizes the importance of ethical conduct, altruism, and the pursuit of wisdom, offering practical guidance for leading a virtuous and meaningful life. By studying Theosophy, individuals can gain clarity on moral issues, cultivate a sense of ethical responsibility, and contribute to the greater good of humanity.

 

7. Appreciation of Comparative Religion

The study of Theosophy encourages an appreciation of comparative religion and the underlying unity of religious and spiritual traditions. Blavatsky's writings explore the common threads that run through the world's religions, highlighting universal spiritual principles that transcend cultural and historical boundaries. By gaining a deeper understanding of comparative religion through Theosophy, individuals can develop a more inclusive and pluralistic perspective, fostering interfaith harmony and mutual respect.

 

8. Intellectual Stimulation

The Theosophical teachings offer a rich and intellectually stimulating framework for exploring profound philosophical and metaphysical concepts. Blavatsky's writings encompass a wide range of subjects, including cosmology, metaphysics, ancient wisdom, and the evolution of consciousness, providing ample material for intellectual inquiry and contemplation. By engaging with these teachings, individuals can expand their intellectual horizons, develop critical thinking skills, and gain a deeper understanding of the fundamental questions that have intrigued philosophers and mystics throughout history.

 

9. Healing and Reconciliation

The Theosophical teachings offer insights into the nature of healing and reconciliation, both on a personal and collective level. Blavatsky's writings delve into the esoteric principles of healing, the nature of disease, and the interconnectedness of mind, body, and spirit. By studying Theosophy, individuals can gain a deeper understanding of holistic healing modalities, the power of the mind in influencing health, and the potential for spiritual transformation through the healing process. Furthermore, the Theosophical emphasis on universal brotherhood and compassion can contribute to the reconciliation of divisions and conflicts within society, fostering a more harmonious and peaceful world.

 

10. Contribution to Global Transformation

Finally, studying the Blavatskyan Theosophical teachings can empower individuals to contribute to the ongoing global transformation towards a more enlightened and compassionate world. Blavatsky's vision of a spiritually awakened humanity, working towards the betterment of all beings, inspires individuals to engage in positive action and service to humanity. By embodying the principles of Theosophy in their lives, individuals can become agents of positive change, working towards the realization of a more just, peaceful, and sustainable world.

 

In summary, the study of the Blavatskyan Theosophical teachings offers a wide range of benefits, ranging from personal spiritual growth to the potential for global transformation. By delving into the esoteric wisdom, ethical principles, and philosophical insights of Theosophy, individuals can expand their understanding of the nature of reality, cultivate compassion and empathy, and contribute to the evolution of humanity towards a more harmonious and enlightened future. As the Theosophical teachings continue to inspire and guide seekers of truth and wisdom, their profound impact on individuals and society is likely to endure for generations to come.

 

 

 

 

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