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Discipleship in the New Age II - Teachings on Initiation - Part IV
The first thing, therefore, that the disciple in preparation for initiation has to learn is the nature of ideas and their distinction from contacted thought-forms - to express it simply, and therefore, from the complexity of the subject, inadequately. The primary task of the Master is to aid the disciple to develop the intuition, and at the same time, keep the mental perception in an active and wholesome state. This is done, first of all, by enabling him to arrive at a right relation and correct evaluation between the abstract and the concrete realms of thought - those higher and lower aspects of the mind which are to the soul what the lower mind and the brain are to the personality. Think this out. A true recognition of this distinction produces a new focusing of the life force within the soul which will, in the earlier stages of discipleship, work through the abstract mind and the concrete mind. But the abstractions with which the disciple in training is then dealing are not in the nature of intuitions, and here is a point where confusion oft arises. They are merely the broad, general and universal perceptions and world inclusions which the gradually developing intelligence of mankind has registered and recognized and which the foremost thinkers of the race grasp with facility, but which seem so amazing to the neophyte. They appear to him of such magnitude and importance (as objects of his enhanced vision) that he confounds them with ideas and their intuitive perception. He has not learned to discriminate between abstract thoughts and intuitive ideas. Here lies the crux of his problem.

Ideas are other than this, as far as the initiate is concerned; they deal primarily with that which will eventually be, and are those formative new spiritual and creative impulses which will supersede the old and build the "new house" in which humanity will live; cycle after cycle and civilization after civilization, the fresh stream of inflowing ideas have conditioned the dwelling places of man and his mode of life and expression; through the medium of these ever-living and ever-appearing ideas, humanity passes on to [281] something better and greater and more appropriate to the life of the slowly manifesting divinity.

Ideas, when intuitively contacted by the disciple or initiate, via the antahkarana, must be brought consciously down to abstract levels of thinking where (expressing it symbolically) they form the blueprints, prior to the institution of the creative process which will give them phenomenal existence and being. I would have you, therefore, remember the three factors:

  1. The Intuition - which contacts and reveals new ideas.
  2. The Abstract World - in which they are given form and substance and which is to the thought-form eventually created what the etheric body is to the dense physical vehicle.
  3. Concrete Thought - producing the concretizing of the thought-form and thus making the idea available to mankind.

Here, in this simple summation, is expressed for you the process which the disciple will be able to follow when he is initiate; as each initiation is taken, the scope of the idea steadily increases, and its potency also, so that it might be said that the initiate - as he progresses upon the Path of Initiation - works first with the idea, then with ideas, then with the hierarchical Plan in a wide and general sense, and finally reaches the point where he comes under the influence of the purpose of Sanat Kumara. Then the will of the Lord of the World will stand revealed to him.

The work of the initiate is carried forward within the ring-pass-not of the Universal Mind; this is only a phrase expressive of the range of thought, planning and purpose which is that of a planetary or solar Logos. The quality of the approach which the initiate brings to the work is drawn, as pure energy, from the heart center of the planetary Logos; it is pure love with its inevitable corollaries, wisdom and [282] understanding. These give him insight into the plan. The power which he can bring to the task is drawn from his comprehension of the purpose of the planetary Logos and this expansive and all-inclusive work is entered into in graded sequences and carried forward under the influence of the initiate's expanding awareness and his growing sensitivity to impression.

I am seeking here to divorce your minds from the idée fixe that the initiate works because he knows. I would reverse the statement and say he knows because he works. There is no point of attainment at which the Initiator says to the initiate: Now you know, and therefore you can work. Rather it is: Now you serve and work, and in so doing you are embarked upon a new and difficult voyage of discovery; you will discover reality progressively and arrive at whole areas of expression, because you serve. Resulting from this service, certain powers and energies will manifest, and your ability to use them will indicate to you, to your fellow initiates and to the world that you are a worker, fully conscious upon the inner side of life.

The initiate works from his place upon that inner side. During the early stages of the initiatory process he works in the world of meaning. After the third initiation he works consciously in the world of causes, until such time as he is advanced enough to work in the world of being. The aspirant is endeavoring to grasp the purpose of the world of meaning and to apply the knowledge gained to his daily life with understanding. The disciple is endeavoring to comprehend the significance of the world of causes and to relate cause and effect in a practical manner. The initiate of higher degree utilizes the potencies of these three worlds of meaning, cause and being to implement the purpose of Sanat Kumara.

These differences are not hard and fast, with clear lines of demarcation; life is fluid and moving and the points of attainment are myriad in number and progressing forward all the time, but the general picture will serve to carry your thoughts away from the "trappings of initiation," from the coloring and the unimportant, so-called facts (actual and [283] imagined) which have been so much emphasized by the occult groups and leaders and which have been held out as inducements to would-be disciples. I would have this group which I am training forget the details about initiation as presented so oft by the mystery monger and the emotional person, and concentrate upon the far more factual realities of meaning, cause and being. The old and outworn presentations were the product of the concrete mind, and are therefore crystallizing in their effects and distorting in their results; they are also evocative of spiritual selfishness and isolation, as well as of astral curiosity. The new approach which I seek to indicate makes its appeal to the abstract mind and to the soul, whose values are sound, and eventually to the intuition; it is not so colorful an appeal as far as the personality is concerned, but it will produce more creative results and lead the neophyte along a safer road, with fewer disappointments and failures.

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