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The Rays and the Initiations - Part Two - Section Two - The Aspirant and the Major Initiations
On the buddhic or intuitional plane (the fourth level of the cosmic physical plane) the mind nature - even that of the higher mind or the level of abstract thought - loses its control over the initiate and is henceforth only useful in service. The intuition, the pure reason, complete knowledge illumined by the loving purpose of the divine Mind - to mention some of the names of this fourth level of awareness or of spiritual sensitivity - takes its place and the initiate lives henceforth in the light of correct or straight knowledge, expressing itself as wisdom in all affairs - hence the titles of Master of the Wisdom or Lord of Compassion given to Those Who have taken the fourth and the fifth initiations; these follow very closely upon each other. From the buddhic level of awareness, the Master works; on it, He lives His life, undertakes His service and furthers the Plan in the three worlds and for the four kingdoms in nature. Let this not be forgotten. Also, let it be remembered that this achievement of focus and this attained freedom are [701] not the result of a symbolic ceremony, but are the result of lives of suffering, of minor renunciations and of conscious experience. This conscious experience, leading to the fourth initiation, is a definitely planned undertaking, arrived at as true vision is gradually conferred, the divine Plan is sensed and receives cooperation, and intelligent aspiration takes the place of vague longings and sporadic efforts "to be good," as it is normally expressed by aspirants.

It will be clear to you, therefore, why this fourth initiation is ruled or governed by the fourth Ray of Harmony through Conflict. The harmonizing of the lower centers with the higher, the harmonizing or establishing of right relations between the three worlds of human evolution and the buddhic plane, the rapport gradually being brought about by each succeeding initiation, between humanity and the Hierarchy, plus the service of establishing right human relations among men - these are some of the results which you even now grasp theoretically; these you will also grasp practically and substantially one day in your own experience. It is with this ray energy that the initiate works as he makes the Great Renunciation and is transferred thereby to the Cardinal Cross of the Heavens. This is the energy which enables him to live in the Eternal Now and to renounce the bindings of time. Through the entire experience he fights against that which is material; under the law of our planet (and, if you only knew, under the law of our solar system) nothing is achieved except by struggle and conflict - struggle and conflict associated on our planet with pain and suffering but which, after this fourth initiation, is devoid of suffering. A hint as to the purpose for which our little planet exists and its unique position in the scheme of things can here be noted.

As I mentioned earlier, the initiate now works from "above downwards." This is only a symbolic mode of speech. Like his great Master, the Christ, when he seeks to serve humanity he "descends into hell" which is the hell of materialism and of physical plane life, and there labors for the furtherance of the Plan. We read in the Christian [702] teaching that "Christ descended into hell and taught the spirits which are in prison" for three days. This means that He worked with humanity in the three worlds (for time and the process of events are regarded by philosophers as synonymous in meaning) for a brief period of time, but was called (on account of His unique task of embodying for the first time in world history the love principle of divinity) to be the Head of the Hierarchy.

The same concept of working in the three worlds of physical plane existence (in the cosmic sense) is embodied for us in the phrase found in the New Testament that "the veil of the temple was rent in twain from the top to the bottom." This is the veil which, symbolically speaking, divides or shuts off humanity from participation in the kingdom of God. This was rent by the Christ - an unique service which He rendered both to humanity and to the spiritual Hierarchy; He made it easier for a much quicker communication to be set up between those two great centers, of divine life.

I would ask you to ponder this Initiation of Renunciation, remembering ever in your daily life that this process of renunciation, entailing the crucifixion of the lower self, is only made possible by the practice of detachment every day. The word "detachment" is only the Eastern term for our word "renunciation." That is the practical use of such information which I have here given to you. I would ask you also (curious as it may seem) to get used to crucifixion, if you care to use that word; to permit yourself to get accustomed to suffering with detachment, knowing that the soul suffers not at all, and that there is no pain or agony for the Master Who has attained liberation. The Masters have each and all renounced that which is material; They have been lifted out of the three worlds by Their Own effort; They have detached Themselves from all hindrances; They have left hell behind and the term "spirits that are in prison" no longer applies to Them. This They have done for no selfish purpose. In the early days of the Probationary Path, selfish aspiration is foremost in the consciousness [703] of the aspirant; however, as he treads the path, and likewise the Path of Discipleship, he leaves all such motives behind (a minor renunciation) and his one aim, in seeking liberation and freedom from the three worlds, is to aid and help humanity. This dedication to service is the mark of the Hierarchy.

You can see, therefore, how the Buddha prepared the way for the Initiation of Renunciation or of Crucifixion by His teaching and His emphasis upon detachment. Think on these things and study the great continuity of effort and cooperation which distinguishes the Members of the spiritual Hierarchy. My prayer and wish is that your goal may be clear to your vision and that the "strength of your heart" may be adequate to the undertaking.

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