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Discipleship in the New Age I - Talks to Disciples - Part IX
It is essential that one thing be grasped by all of you, prior to undertaking work with me. It is that in a group of disciples such as this, the large majority have already taken the first initiation and are being prepared for one of the later initiations. There is nothing surprising in this statement or any particular cause for elation or for pleasure. An immense number of the world aspirants evidence - through their aliveness to the spiritual issues, through the intensity of their aspiration and through their struggles to be good, self-sacrificing and wise - that the life of the indwelling Christ is most definitely moving in them and is present in their hearts. The initiation of "spiritual fixation upon the physical plane" (as the birth at Bethlehem, the first initiation, is sometimes called) has already been undergone by thousands, and they are sincerely and definitely moving forward upon the Way. I would remind you here that many, many lives can elapse between the first initiation and the second - long, long interludes of silent and almost unapparent [95] growth. You are in no way unique or far ahead of the senior world aspirants. In that lies cause for encouragement and humility. It is naturally not my intention to state who is being prepared for any particular initiation. That is a matter for each of you to discover for himself. It is a matter of interior orientation and not a matter of outside information.

One point anent the taking of the first three major initiations, I would like to refer to at this point. It is that they have always to be taken when in a physical body and upon the physical plane, thus demonstrating initiate consciousness through both mind and brain. This is a point not oft emphasized and sometimes contradicted.

I would like also to point out with all the clarity and power at my disposal, the very deep necessity for humility and its constantly recurring expression. I refer not to an inferiority complex but to that adjusted sense of right proportion which equips its possessor with a balanced point of view as to himself, his responsibilities and his life work. This, when present, will enable him to view himself dispassionately and his presented opportunities with equal dispassion. Undoubtedly all disciples, you among them, have speculated upon your status and standing upon the Path and upon the status of your co-disciples. That is, after all, both natural and human. Some of you are too humble in the personal sense and not in the sense of true humility. By that I mean that you are so afraid of pride and bombast and an over-estimation of your capacities that you are untrue to the realities and belittle the power of your souls. R.S.U. is a case in point and needs to walk humbly in the spiritual life which involves a correct recognition of place and opportunity and not this constant emphasis upon her inability to measure up. She owes it to my group of disciples and to me to see herself as she truly is - a disciple in preparation for a certain initiation and with much wisdom at her disposal. W.D.S. suffers from an inferiority complex which drives him to an exterior enforcement of his personality upon others and expresses itself in a subtle, spiritual jealousy of those who impress themselves upon his consciousness as his spiritual superiors. He needs to accept himself as he is, to be glad that there are those who guarantee to him the possibility of future [96] unfoldment, because they have already achieved more than he has, and then to forget about himself as he accepts discipleship and finds himself so busy in true service that he has no time for ceaseless comparisons with others.

True humility is based on fact, on vision and on time pressures. Here I give you a hint and would ask you to think deeply on these three foundations of a major personality attitude which must be held and demonstrated before each initiation. I would remind you that there must always be humility in the presence of true vision.

This experiment which I am undertaking has its dangers. The disciples in a Master's Ashram upon the inner planes know somewhat the status of their co-disciples, but they do not always carry this knowledge through into the brain consciousness. This is very largely a protective factor because they could not be trusted to handle the knowledge correctly upon the physical plane. They might be super-critical of a fellow disciple who was, temporarily, not living up to his initiation objective; they might be subtly jealous or unduly self-depreciative; they might treat the disciple who is ahead of them upon the Path of Initiation as someone superior and set apart and thereby complicate his problem and his effort; they might lose a sense of proportion as to initiation itself, as to its processes and its states, and this through too close an approach to, or a misunderstanding of, another struggling initiate-disciple. The pitfalls are many and I tell you to beware. Attend to your own life and your own business. Speculate not as to the status of the other disciples in my group who are your close cooperators and co-sharers in my experiment. Cultivate the humility which is based on understanding and vision and so serve the world, your fellow disciples and serve me also - as the major point of your contact with the Hierarchy.

I have often pointed out that a disciple is known by his influence upon his environment, and an initiate by the wide scope of his world service. How does it happen then that a few of you (not all) are not distinguished by such service and are of relatively small importance in world affairs? Several things could explain this. First of all, a disciple may be called to work off certain karmic relationships, to fulfil certain obligations [97] of very ancient origin and thus "clear the decks" for more complete and uninterrupted service to humanity at a later date. This occurs quite frequently between the first and second initiations. Sometimes a disciple may be doing effective service upon the inner planes and on a large scale and yet there may be no evidence of this upon the physical plane, except in the beauty of a life lived. Others may be learning certain techniques of psychological relationships and of energy distribution and may have dedicated some particular life to the acquiring of these esoteric sciences. One life is but a short moment in the long cycle of the soul. The true disciple will never fall back on the reasons given above as alibis for lack of effort. I would remind you that world influence alone does not always imply discipleship. There are many groups - well known and magnetic - which have at their center some dominant personality who is not necessarily a disciple.

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