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A Treatise on White Magic - Rule Fifteen - The Esoteric Sense

The fires approach the shadow, yet burn it not. The fire sheath is completed. Let the magician chant the words that blend the fire and water.

The Esoteric Sense

We come now to the consideration of the last rule for magic. As we cast our minds back over this long series of instructions certain basic lines of teaching stand out with exceptional clarity, casting lesser lines of instruction into the shade. Students would do well to remember that in the reading of any basic textbook (and this one is so regarded) a definite procedure should be adopted. The student should first of all read the textbook as a whole, in order to grasp its outstanding points, its main lines of teaching, and the three or four propositions upon which its entire structure is founded. Having grasped these, he can then begin to deal with, and to isolate, those subsidiary points which serve to elucidate and clarify the main essentials. After that, he can successfully deal with the details. Students therefore would find it of interest to review these instructions, and gather out of them the major points; then they can proceed to fill in the secondary teachings, and finally arrange the detailed data under the various heads which have emerged. This, when completed would constitute a synopsis of the book and would fix the knowledge it contains firmly in the student's memory.

One of the main teachings which can be seen most clearly in all instructions of a truly esoteric character concerns the attitude of the student of the occult. He is supposed to be dealing with things subjective and esoteric; he aims to be a worker in white magic. As such, he must assume and consistently hold the position of the Observer, detached from the mechanism of observation [602] and contact; he must recognize himself as essentially a spiritual entity, different in nature, objectives and methods of working from the bodies which he considers it wise to occupy temporarily and to employ. He must realize his unity and lines of contact with all similar workers and thus arrive at a conscious awareness of his position in the spiritual hierarchy of Beings. So much misinformation has been spread abroad and so much emphasis has been unwisely laid upon status and position in the so-called hierarchy of souls, that sane and balanced disciples now seek to turn their thoughts elsewhere and to eliminate as far as may be all thought of grades and spheres of activity. It is possible, in the swing of the pendulum, to swing too far in the opposite direction and to discount these stages of activity. Do not misunderstand me however; I do not suggest that an attempt be made to place people and to decide where they stand upon the evolutionary ladder. This has been most foolishly done in the past, with much dishonor to the subject, so much so that, in the minds of the public, the whole matter has fallen into disrepute. If these stages are regarded sanely for what they are - states of extended consciousness, and grades of responsibility - then the danger of personality reaction to the terms "accepted disciple, initiate, adept, master" would be negligible and much trouble would be eliminated. It must ever be remembered that individual status is rigidly kept to oneself, and the point of evolution (which may be truthfully recognized as lying ahead of that of the average citizen) will be demonstrated by a life of active unselfish service and by the manifestation of an illumined vision which is ahead of the racial idea.

In the gathering together in the world at this time of the new Group of World Workers, true caution must be preserved. Each worker is responsible for himself and his service and for no one else. It is wise to gauge and [603] approximate the evolutionary status, not upon claims made, but upon work accomplished and the love and wisdom shown. Judgment should be based upon an evidenced knowledge of the plan as it works out in the wise formulation of the next step ahead for the human race; upon a manifested esoteric sense, and upon an influence or an auric power which is wide, constructive and inclusive.

You ask me to define more clearly what I mean by the words "esoteric sense". I mean essentially the power to live and to function subjectively, to possess a constant inner contact with the soul and the world in which it is found, and this must work out subjectively through love, actively shown; through wisdom, steadily outpoured; and through that capacity to include and to identify oneself with all that breathes and feels which is the outstanding characteristic of all truly functioning sons of God. I mean, therefore, an interiorly held attitude of mind which can orient itself at will in any direction. It can govern and control the emotional sensitiveness, not only of the disciple himself, but of all whom he may contact. By the strength of his silent thought, he can bring light and peace to all. Through that mental power, he can tune in on the world thought, and upon the realm of ideas and can discriminate between and choose those mental agencies and those concepts which will enable him, as a worker under the plan, to influence his environment and to clothe the new ideals in that thought matter which will enable them to be more easily recognized in the world of ordinary everyday thinking and living. This attitude of mind will enable the disciple also to orient himself to the world of souls and in that high place of inspiration and of light, discover his fellow-workers, communicate with them and - in union with them - collaborate in the working out of divine intentions.

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