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Esoteric Psychology II - Chapter I - The Egoic Ray - The Growth of Soul Influence
In our consideration of the second part of the statement in this treatise, which deals with the relationship of the soul to its instrument - the mechanism whereby or wherewith it expresses quality, activity and eventually divinity (whatever that vague word may mean) - we have to approach the subject in two ways: [60]
  • First, we must consider the utilization of the mechanism on the Path of Outgoing.
  • Second, the utilization of the mechanism upon the Path of Return.

In the first case, we are dearing with what might be regarded as the physiological aspect, for it is in the physical nature that the consciousness is primarily focused; in the second case, we are concerned with the purely mental apparatus, though the word "apparatus" is basically unsuitable.

It might be well to interrupt here for a moment and deal with the idea of mechanism and divinity, for these are apt to be a materializing of the idea of divinity, particularly in the West. The divinity of Christ, for instance, is frequently illustrated by reference to His miracles, and to those supernormal powers which He so often evidenced. Supernormal powers are, of themselves, no evidence of divinity at all. Great exponents of evil can perform the same miracles and demonstrate the same capacity to create and to transcend the normal faculties of man. These powers are inherent in the creative aspect of Divinity, the third or matter aspect, and are linked to an intelligent understanding of matter and to the power of the mind to dominate substance. This power is, therefore, neither divine nor non-divine. It is a demonstration of the capacity of the mind, and can be used with equal facility by an incarnated Son of God, functioning as a World Savior or Christ, and by those Beings who are on the path of destruction, and who are called (by those who know no better) Black Magicians, Evil Forces and Devils.

Divinity (using the word in its separative sense) connotes the expression of the qualities of the second or building aspect of God, - magnetism, love, inclusiveness, non-separativeness, sacrifice for the good of the world, unselfishness, intuitive understanding, cooperation with the Plan of God, and many [61] other such qualitative phrases. Mechanism, after all, implies the creation of a form out of matter and the infusing of that form with a life principle which will show itself in the power to grow, to reproduce, to preserve identity of some kind, to flower forth into certain instinctual reactions, and to preserve its own specific qualitative nature. Life resembles the fuel which, in conjunction with the mechanism, provides the motivating principle and makes activity and the needed movement possible. But there is more to manifestation than forms which possess a life principle. There is a diversity running through nature and a qualifying principle which differentiates the mechanisms; there is a general synthesis and purpose which defies the powers of man to emulate it creatively, and which is outstandingly the major characteristic of divinity. It expresses itself through color and beauty, through reason and love, through idealism and wisdom, and through those many qualities and that purpose which, for instance, animate the aspirant. This is - briefly and inadequately expressed - Divinity. It is, however, a relative expression of Divinity. When each of us stands where stand the Masters and the Christ, we will regard this whole question from another point of view. The developing of virtues, the cultivation of understanding, the demonstration of good character and high aims, and the expression of an ethical and moral point of view are all necessary fundamentals, preceding certain definite experiences which usher the soul into worlds of realization which are so far removed from our present point of view that any definition of them would be meaningless. What we are engaged in is the development of those qualities and virtues which will "clear our vision", because they produce the purification of the vehicles so that the real significance of divinity can begin to emerge in our consciousness. [62]

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