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The Rays and the Initiations - Part One - Fourteen Rules For Group Initiation
Blindness is therefore, esoterically speaking, the place of learning and is related to the eye, throat and heart doctrine. It is not related to the dim vision, the sensing of half truths and the groupings of the aspirant in the process of learning about himself, or as he visions the goal and seeks to walk the Path. That is a familiar condition and one to which all beginners are subjected and which they cannot avoid for it is inherent in their natures. Occult blindness is spiritually induced and "blacks out" the glory and the promised attainment and reward. The disciple is thrown back upon himself. All he can see is his problem, his tiny field of experience, and his - to him - feeble and limited equipment. It is to this stage that the prophet Isaiah refers when he speaks of giving to the struggling aspirant "the treasures of darkness." The beauty of the immediate, the glory of the present opportunity and the need to focus upon the task and service of the moment are the rewards of moving forward into the apparently impenetrable darkness. For the initiate, this blindness is still more esoteric; there remains for him absolutely no light whatsoever - no earth light nor any light within the three worlds at all. There is only blackness. To this the mystic has given the name "the dark night of the soul." The true dark night (of which the mystic's dark night is only a dim reflection, to speak paradoxically) marks a very exalted state of Being and stage of development. It was into the blackness and darkness that Christ penetrated as He over-shadowed one of His Masters, the Master Jesus upon the Cross. This will strike a new note for many, and can only now be revealed. It is concerned with the facility with which a Master participates in the experience, subjectively realized, of the disciples whom He has prepared for initiation. It relates also to the still higher identification of the Christ with those initiates who are taking the fourth and fifth initiations, such as the Master Jesus in the experience referred to above. Christ is no longer the Initiator, but stands to the initiate as the Master does to the disciple. It is a curious phase of "identical participation," which evokes no reaction from the Master or the [199] Master of the Masters, the Christ, except in so far as it enables the divine Participator Himself to face another area of darkness, veiling and hiding a still more supernal glory. The above paragraph is far beyond the comprehension of the average student, but will be comprehended by those whose eyes are open to be blinded.

Students must remember that the four veils upon the etheric plane are only the lower symbolic correspondences to certain great areas of divine expression, and that ever the glory must be approached through the darkness. Such is the Law. These higher veiling factors can be mentioned and enumerated, but more information concerning these mysteries, this separating darkness encountered by the initiate may not be given:

  • Veil I. That which faces the disciple as he wrestles with the Dweller on the Threshold and becomes conscious of the Angel of the Presence, though as yet he sees Him not.
  • Veil II. That which the initiate encounters at the fourth initiation and which forces him to cry out in his blindness: "My God, my God, why hast Thou forsaken me." The words uttered by the Christ at that time, and as the Participator, have been forgotten by the orthodox, though preserved by the esotericist. To them H.P.B. refers in The Secret Doctrine.
  • Veil III. That mysterious blindness which overwhelms the initiate when - as the Embodiment of all the forces of the Spiritual Triad - He faces the Monad and is impelled forward by the "devastating Will" of the first aspect. Of this I may not write. It concerns the sixth and seventh initiations.
  • Veil IV. That "unknown impenetrable Void, the utter darkness of negation" which Those Who are in the Council Chamber of the Lord of the World and Who are focused in Shamballa face when the time comes for Them to "negate" our planetary life-expression and experience altogether. They must then leave behind all the seven planes of spiritual and human experience [200] and pass onward and out into phases of Life and Being for which we have no words, and of which we have no conception. They leave through the fourth veil on the cosmic physical etheric levels (on the highest plane of our seven planes) and pass on to the cosmic astral plane. There They negate its existence as They have earlier negated the existence of the astral plane, so familiar an illusion to all of us. The initiate passes on to the cosmic astral plane and finds - What? Who knows? I do not.

Thus the veils serve their purpose; blindness nurtures and protects, provided it is innate and natural, soul-imposed or spiritually engendered. If it is willfully self-induced, if it provides an alibi for grasped knowledge, if it is assumed in order to avoid responsibility, then sin enters in and difficulty ensues. From this may all of you be protected.

Step by step, the Brothers of the Light and others who tread consciously the Lighted Way have removed Themselves from the lure of form; the Army of the Voice no longer can succeed in deflecting Their footsteps and the veils of illusion no longer block Their vision and Their moving forward. A relative freedom has been gained and the initiate stands free from much that has hitherto hindered his progress; the world of form, of glamor and of seduction has for him no further appeal.

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