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Discipleship in the New Age II - Personal Instructions to Disciples - R.S.W.
August 1940


I would ask you whether the implications as to the relationship between your soul and personality rays to the rays of your astral and physical vehicles interests you in any way? The two lower rays are the same as the two higher and in between stands the ray which is, par excellence, that which provides the battleground for the disciple in training. Twelve of the group members have the fourth Ray of Harmony through Conflict controlling the mental body, hence consequent conflict and proffered opportunity, plus an expressed ambition for the achievement of psychic harmony between the soul of form and the soul itself. It is through the conflict between these two that harmony becomes possible. This is the ray of testing, the energy which brings about trial. People struggle with ideas, with attaining the goal of their current idealism and are driven by longing to find peace, joy and divine assurance. After the cycle of lives in which the mental ray varies from life to life, there arrives an incarnation wherein the ray of harmony through conflict dominates; then the disciple is specifically put to the proof and is tested and tried in order to demonstrate to him the gain or the non-gain of the past cycle of living experience. Such a proposition faces many in this group today as it, in its turn, faces humanity, one of whose controlling rays is the fourth.

You can, therefore, expect to have to face up to a life of testing and of change. This is not to posit that the testing and change and battle will be of a physical nature or on the physical plane or will involve physical plane decisions. This ray produces the "harmonizing" strain and stress on any of the planes (using these words technically) and for the majority of you it is pre-eminently active upon the astral plane. [736] There the tests will come, with repercussions - if I may use such a phrase - upon the buddhic or intuitional plane.

You are facing changes in your life. I would here point out to you that changes in the life of a pledged disciple can be due to two main causes: the working out of karma which is unavoidable but which presents opportunity, or it can be due to the free choice and free decision, involving direct initiating activity on the part of the disciple; these decisions can be carried out or avoided according to his own planning. This line of activity has, therefore, little to do with precipitating karma but is concerned with intelligent initiating of new karma which will, in its turn, produce its inevitable effects later. I call this to your attention, my brother, because you are reaching the point in your career as a soul where you can consciously engineer situations and conditions which are not effects or results but are the commencement of new cycles. It is a momentous time in the soul's progress when conscious decisions can be made with due appreciation of consequences.

I am also referring to this because you are meditating steps (are you not, my brother?) which will produce effective change. I seek to have you ponder upon the responsibility involved and know with clarity your motive. Lives of indecision come wherein the man balances back and forth between decision and indecision, arriving apparently at no action. They are lives of apparent futility but nevertheless of great value. Needless to point out that such incarnations are frequently lived under the sun-sign of Libra or have Libra as the rising sign. Prior to that particular life, the man has had little difficulty. He is conditioned by precipitating karma and at the same time experiences little difficulty in arriving at decisions, because his choices and aims will be motivated by the personality and determined by the lower self. Later, after a life or lives of balancing, the die is cast and the period of inactivity and of indecision ends and the soul begins to determine action; karma then comes under the processes of conscious transmutation. Motives become purified [737] and objectives shift from those of personality ambition to the spiritual goals of humanity.

Such a life is upon you now, my brother, and I am therefore seeking to make the issues clear to you. Personality decisions are not for you; and for you, likewise, the period of indecision must end and it will end when you see soul purpose more clearly. You might here ask: In what way can I know? How can I arrive at right decision? First of all by eliminating selfishness and arriving at that unconcern as to the happiness or the experience of the personality; secondly, by refusing to move hurriedly. The disciple has to learn that when he has arrived at right - and therefore for him irrevocable decision - that this very motive and decision starts energy working along the indicated lines and that, having decided, he now moves slowly in the wake of that energy. There are deep significances in what I am here telling you and I beg you to strive to understand my meaning.

I would ask you (in order to help you to see clearly and so be of greater service to others) to make a study this winter of the Law of Karma. Read the books upon the subject but take not too seriously their deductions. Gather out of that which I have written all the information you can find concerning this theme. And, my brother, having done so, you will then arrange that material in its right and spiritual order and significance, and at the same time reduce your ideas to written form for your own clarification and the helping of your brothers. This teaching has a group significance.

I am not referring more clearly to your life decisions and plans. They are your own concern. I have sought to widen the "spread" of your consciousness so that you can bring to any planned life of service a reasoned judgment and a seasoned experience. These two phrases should express the personality quality of the trained disciple. For your personal meditation I suggest the following:

Take ten minutes twice a day for deep reflection on one of the themes listed below, viewing them in two ways: the individual interpretation and, secondly, that interpretation which concerns humanity as a whole. If you will do this [738] regularly, you will build the bridge between the part and the whole.

  1. The dharma of the individual in the home.
  2. The duty of the individual in the group.
  3. The obligation of the individual to humanity.
  4. The responsibility of the individual to life.
  5. The reaction of the individual to karma, personal and human.
  6. The relation of the individual to the Hierarchy.

You have there six months' work in meditation. It will involve the practical relation of man to karma, individual life to the mass life as its flows through him, and life also as it actuates the group to life and as it expresses itself through nations and through humanity as a whole.

The blessing of the soul rests upon you, my brother - your soul, my soul and the soul of all.

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