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Glamor - A World Problem - The Causes of Glamor
c. The Contrast between Maya and Inspiration

Here we come definitely into the realm of material substance. This is essentially and in a peculiar manner the realm of force. Maya is predominantly (for the individual) the aggregate of the forces which control his septenary force centers to the exclusion, I would emphasize, of the controlling energy of the soul. Therefore, you will see that the bulk of humanity, until a man stands upon the Probationary Path, are under the control of maya, for a man succumbs to maya when he is controlled by any other force or forces than those energies which come direct from the soul, conditioning and controlling the lesser forces of the personality as they eventually and inevitably must and will.

When a man is under the control of physical, astral and mental forces, he is convinced at the time that they are, for him, right forces. Herein lies the problem of maya. Such forces, however, when they control a man, determine him in a separative attitude and produce an effect which feeds and stimulates the personality and does not bring in the energy of the soul, the true Individuality. This analysis should prove illuminating to you. If men and [149] women would bring their lives under a closer scrutiny by the true inner or spiritual man and could thus determine what combination of energies conditions their life activity, they would not continue to function - as they do now - so blindly, so inadequately and so ineffectually.

It is for this reason that the study and understanding of motives is of such value and importance, for such a study determines intellectually (if properly investigated) what factor or factors inspires the daily life. This is a statement worth careful consideration. I would ask you: What is your major actuating motive? For, whatever it may be, it conditions and determines your predominant life tendency.

Many people, particularly the unintelligent masses, are solely inspired by desire - material, physical and temporary. Animal desire for the satisfaction of the animal appetites, material desire for possession and for the luxuries of existence, the longing for "things," for comforts and for security - economic, social and religious - control the majority. The man is under the influence of the densest form of maya, and the forces of his nature are concentrated in the sacral center. Others are motivated by some form of aspiration or ambition - aspiration towards some material heaven (and most religions portray heaven in this manner), ambitions for power, desire for the satisfaction of the emotional or aesthetic appetites and for the possession of the more subtle realities, and the longing for emotional comfort, for mental stability and assurance that the higher desires will meet with gratification. All this is maya in its emotional form, and it is not the same thing as glamor. In the case of glamor, the forces of a man's nature are seated in the solar plexus. In the case of maya, they are seated in the sacral center. Glamor is subtle and emotional. Maya is tangible and etheric. [150]

Such are the forces of maya which actuate, motivate and energize the life of the ordinary man. Under their influence he is helpless for they inspire all his thinking, all his aspiration and his desire, and all his activity on the physical plane. His problem is twofold:

  1. To bring all his centers under the inspiration of the soul.
  2. To transfer or transmute the forces of the lower centers, which control the personality, into the energies of the centers above the diaphragm, which respond automatically to the inspiration of the soul.

It is in this thought that the potency and the symbolic value of breathing exercises consists. The motive is soul control, and though the methods employed are (in many cases) definitely undesirable yet the developing tendency of the life thought will prove inevitably determining and conditioning. The methods used may not save the unprepared physical body from certain evil and disastrous results yet, in the long run and in the last analysis, they may condition the future experience (probably in another life) in such a manner that the aspirant will find himself more able to function as a soul than might otherwise have been the case.

Before I close this particular instruction upon glamor, I would like to call the attention of the group to the occult sentences which I gave to D.L.R. prior to his leaving the group. They have a definite relation to the group work and I would like you to give them careful consideration and study. The Old Commentary, in speaking of the work of those whose dharma it is to dissipate world glamor, uses the following illuminating sentences:

"They come and stand. Within the midst of whirling forms - some of beauty rare and some of [151] horror and despair - they stand. They look not here or there but, with their faces turned towards the light, they stand. Thus through their minds the pure light streams to dissipate the fogs.

"They come and rest. They cease their outer labors, pausing to do a different work. Within their hearts is rest. They run not here and there, but constitute a point of peace and rest. That which upon the surface veils and hides the real begins to disappear and from the heart at rest a beam of dissipating force projects, blends with the shining light and then the mists of man's creation disappear.

"They come and they observe. They own the eye of vision; likewise they own the right direction of the needed force. They see the glamor of the world, and seeing, they note behind it all the true, the beautiful, the real. Thus through the eye of Buddhi comes the power to drive away the veiling, swirling glamors of that glamorous world.

"They stand, they rest, and they observe. Such are their lives and such the service that they render to the souls of men."

I would commend these lines to your careful thought. They convey to you not only the field of your group service but also the desired attitude of the personal life of every member of the group.

I would also like, at this point, to touch upon a factor of real importance in this work and to repeat my earlier warning: Will you remember that the effort to free yourselves from irritation or from what is called in Agni Yoga "imperil" (a peculiar yet satisfying word, my brothers) is particularly essential for this group? Irritation is exceedingly prevalent these days of nervous tension and it most [152] definitely imperils progress and retards the steps of the disciple upon the Way. It can produce dangerous group tension if present in any of you, and this induced group tension can interfere with the free play of the power and light which you are supposed to use, even when the other group members remain unconscious of the emanating source. Irritation definitely generates a poison which locates itself in the region of the stomach and of the solar plexus. Irritation is a disease, if I might use that word, of the solar plexus center and it is definitely contagious to an almost alarming extent. So, my brothers, watch yourselves with care and remember that just in so far as you can live in the head and in the heart, you will end the disease of imperil and aid in the transference of the forces of the solar plexus into the heart center.

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