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Discipleship in the New Age I - Talks to Disciples - Part IV
We will leave now the consideration of this general picture and return to the subject of the specific work that this particular group of my disciples can do. You must avoid the idea that you are working in a unique way and alone. This is not so. There are many today working intelligently with our plans, often isolated and alone. The main requirement in the group work which I seek at this time to emphasize is the most difficult one of a true impersonality. On two points, disciples in the past have ever been emphatic. They have seen and felt the need for reticence, where there is any inner spiritual experience, and have felt that the relating or the discussion of the spiritual and the higher psychic events in their lives produced a sense of loss and was against the occult law. They have equally demanded reticence about their personality lives, about their mistakes and failings, and have demanded it more loudly than the permission to be silent about their soul life. Their demand has been based on a true recognition that the discussion of a spiritual happening with those who do not understand [34] has in it a great deal of danger - the danger of misinterpretation, of glamor and of illusion. The desire for reticence in the personality life is based usually on pride, on a fear of criticism, on terror of being derided, misunderstood and judged; these are all unworthy motives.

Among the disciples of the New Age groups and ever in a Master's inner Ashram, there is no need for this theory of reticence. You are co-disciples and co-workers. If any of you have in the past or may in the future become initiates, it will not affect your relation to your fellow-disciples in these groups. The knowledges of initiation cannot be passed on by word of mouth within the initiate ranks, for they are not communicated in speech or by letters. Only those who possess certain transcendental senses can take initiation and should they try to communicate the secrets and mysteries of initiation in symbol or form, you would fail to react to or to understand their meaning.

So, in this group of my disciples, let there be the recognition of unity of thought. Experience, thought, difficulties and problems can be shared, and the cultivation of a sympathetic understanding and of mutual aid in the spiritual life can be developed. Disciples are people of mature years from the standpoint of the soul, and, therefore, the pettiness of life and small frictional difficulties will not be shared by you with each other. There should be no temptation to waste each other's time in idle talk. It is the broad and general outline of the plan for the outer work of these groups of disciples which should engage your thoughts and communications with each other.

The groups planned will be of many different kinds and their work will be diversified and varied. I have for some time desired to write a little more fully about the groups which are forming in the world today, under direction of the Masters. They will gradually make their appearance in the world an fulfil their destined mission. Four of these groups are already formed or in process of forming and the others will gradually be created to meet advancing need.

It is essential that members of these groups have a wider vision than they now have; their membership in any of the [35] groups constitutes an act of service which they are rendering to the work which I and other members of the Hierarchy are carrying forward under the Plan. The individual disciple must not look upon his work as a marvelous opportunity for his own spiritual advancement. All true disciples are equally distinguished by a determination to make the groups successful and all are longing to get as much out of the group work as possible. All are genuinely animated by a desire to serve but also by a general satisfaction over the interest and opportunity offered by the group work. Along with these most normal and right reactions are to be found much ignorance as to the true significance of the work, a good deal of selfish pleasure and some ambition. This is natural, for no perfection is yet to be expected among disciples. If perfection existed, you would all be found working in a different relation to the Great White Lodge.

In order to clarify this group work which the Hierarchy plans and enable you to grasp the intent clearly, I will tell you something of the purpose which lies behind the groups and of the general plan into which it is desired that they fit. In the early stages of any hierarchical experiment, much difficulty is encountered, owing to the material with which the initiating agents (such as myself) have to work. Any new idea, especially if it embodies a purpose which can only materialize later when the Plan is further perfected, fails naturally to meet with full comprehension in the early stages.

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