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The Externalization of the Hierarchy - Section II - The General World Picture
Blame not the personalities involved or the men who produce these events before which we stand today bewildered and appalled. They are only the product of the past and the victims of the present. At the same time, they are the agents of destiny, the creators of the new order and the initiators of the new civilization; they are the destroyers of what must be destroyed before humanity can go forward along the Lighted Way. They are the embodiment of the personality of humanity. Blame yourselves, therefore, for what is today transpiring and seek not to evade responsibility by placing it upon the shoulders of spectacular men or any statesmen, dictator or upon any group. Look not to one person or to one group of persons and accuse them of causing the present world condition. Look not also to any one person or group to bring liberation or to find a solution of the world problem. That is for humanity itself to do. Humanity must take action and will do so, when the right time comes. To recognize joint responsibility, joint mistakes, ancient errors of judgment, wrong attitudes and habits of thought, worldwide selfish purpose and intent, a universal spirit of aggression which, down the ages, has [136] influenced first one nation and then another, the tendency last century to crystallize and become static, the reactionary forces on every hand - these are universal qualities and no nation and no race is free of guilt or has entirely clean hands. Also, no one national group is purely wrong and evil or purely good and unselfish. There are mixed motives everywhere. Nationalism, aggression, selfishness and cruelty in all countries face a desire for world understanding, peaceful relations, and an unselfish and beneficent spirit also in all countries. The Forces of Light find their adherents and their workers in every country though some are subjected to greater handicaps in expression than others. So also do the Forces of Materialism. And in between these two great groups stand the masses - waiting for the emergence of fresh opportunity and new revelations.

It is the universality of these conditions and the clear-cut issues that have made this period one of planetary opportunity and planetary initiation. Initiation is essentially a moving out from under ancient controls into the control of more spiritual and increasingly higher values. Initiation is an expansion of consciousness which leads to a growing recognition of the inner realities. It is equally the recognition of a renewed sense of the need for change and the wise engineering of these needed changes so that real progress can be made; the consciousness is expanded and becomes more generously and divinely inclusive and there is a fresh and more potent control by the soul as it assumes increasingly the direction of the life of the individual, of a nation and of the world.

In the last analysis, and from the standpoint of the Hierarchy, the present conflict between the personality of humanity (expressing the material values as the dominating factor in life experience) and the soul of humanity (expressing the spiritual values as the dominating factor in human affairs) is identical with the conflict which takes place within a human being's consciousness when he has reached the stage of discipleship and is faced with the problem of the pairs of opposites. This conflict is expressed in many [137] ways according to the point of view and the background of thought. It can be called the conflict between Christ and Antichrist but not as those who usually employ those phrases understand them. No one nation is expressive of the spirit of Antichrist, just as no one nation expresses the spirit of Christ. Christ and Antichrist are the dualities of spirituality and materialism, both in the individual and in humanity as a whole. Or you can speak of God and the Devil with the same basic implications. For what is man himself but an expression of divinity (God) in a material form (the Devil), and what is matter but the medium through which divinity must eventually manifest in all its glory? But when that takes place, matter will no longer be a controlling factor but simply a medium of expression.

The battle is therefore on between the form side of life and the soul. The Dweller on the Threshold (the threshold of divinity, my brothers) is humanity itself with its ancient habits of thought, its selfishness and greed. Humanity today stands face to face with the Angel of the Presence - the Soul Whose nature is love and light and inclusive understanding. The great problem today is which of these two will emerge the victor out of the conflict, and which of these two great agencies of life will determine humanity's future and indicate the way which humanity will decide to go.

The issues at stake are clear to all right-thinking people. Intolerance and an intense national pride and self-satisfaction can blind men to the facts of the case today, but there are enough people thinking clearly to make the future of right decision more probable than at any previous time in the history of the race.

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