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A Treatise on Cosmic Fire - Section Two - Division D - Thought Elementals and Fire Elementals
The working out of karmic law in a man's own life might be broadly divided into three divisions, in each of which a different type of energy is demonstrating, producing effects upon the lower and higher bodies of a definite nature.

In the very early stages, when man is scarcely more than an animal, the vibratory activity of the atoms of his three sheaths (and of the lowest primarily) governs all actions on his part. He is the victim of the vibratory activity of physical substance, and much that occurs is the [805] consequence of the interaction between the Ego and its lowest manifestation, the physical sheath. The center of attention is the physical body and only faintly are the two subtler bodies responding. The egoic impulse is slow and heavy, and the vibration is directed to producing response between the egoic consciousness and the atoms of the physical body. The physical permanent atom is more active than the other two. It is the aspect of "fire by friction" which is fanned by the egoic breath, with a triple object in view:

  1. Coordinating the physical body.
  2. Increasing the resistance of the etheric web, a work which was only carried to the desired point by the middle of the Atlantean root-race.
  3. Bringing certain of the lower centers to the necessary stage of expression.

The heat of the atoms in the bodies is increased during this stage, and their atomic life coordinated, while the triangle between the three permanent atoms becomes a demonstrable fact and not a faint indication.

During the second stage, the law of karma or karmic influence (through the inevitable reflex action produced by the increased activity of the sheaths) turns its attention to the working out of desire, and its transmutation into the higher aspiration. Through experience, the pairs of opposites are recognized by the Thinker, and he becomes no longer the victim of the vibratory impulses of his physical body; the factor of intelligent choice becomes apparent. The man begins to discriminate between the pairs of opposites, choosing ever in the early stages that which appeals most to his lower nature and that which he believes will bring him pleasure. The center of the attention of the Ego is the astral body, and it becomes so closely coordinated with the physical body that the two form one united expression of desire. The mental body [806] remains comparatively inactive at this stage. The love nature of the Ego is in process of being developed, and this stage is the longest of the three. It deals with the evolution of the petals of the egoic lotus, and with the blending of solar fire and of fire by friction. Reflex action between the lower and the higher during this middle period produces three effects, which will be seen, if carefully studied to convey much information anent the working out of the law of Karma. These three effects are:

  1. The development of the astral permanent atom with a concurrent stimulation of the physical permanent atom, and thus the growth and evolution of the two sheaths concerned.
  2. The coordination of the threefold man through the innate vitality of the astral body and its effect upon the mental and the physical. This is the kama-manasic period, and as this body is the only complete sphere in the threefold lower man, it is the most powerful body inherently for it embodies (as does the solar system) the heart aspect, or embryonic love nature, which it is the object of macrocosmic and microcosmic evolution to develop.
  3. Finally the unfoldment of the nine egoic petals in three stages.

In the working out of the law we must therefore note that man is first of all the victim of the impulses of dense substance or of the brahma aspect, and thus repeats rapidly the evolutionary process of the preceding solar system; in the second stage he is the victim of desire, or of his own love nature.

In the third stage, the law of karma works through a man's mental nature, and awakens in him recognition of the law, and an intellectual apprehension of cause and of effect. This is the shortest stage but is also the most powerful; it concerns the evolution of the three inner [807] petals shielding the "jewel," and their ability to disclose at the right moment that which lies hidden. It covers the period of the evolution of advanced man, and of the man upon the Path. In connection with the human family it covers the first half of the next round, prior to the great separation. Electric fire is beginning to make its radiations felt, and the will or purpose of the Ego is now consciously realized upon the physical plane. The three permanent atoms form a triangle of light, and the petals of the lotus are rapidly unfolding. When the will and purpose of the Ego are realized by man in his waking consciousness in the physical brain, then the law of karma in the three worlds is becoming neutralized, and man is on the verge of liberation. He has exhausted the initial vibration, and there is no response within his sheaths to the threefold vibration of the three worlds; he stands freed from the three kingdoms and the fourth.

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