WHEN WE IDENTIFY AND STRUGGLE with the problems of the personal self we cannot see a way out of our loneliness and suffering because we are looking in the wrong direction! Should we forget this most important principle of life, we need only recall to mind the existence and example of our sun, which constantly demonstrates a fundamental divine law.
As above, so below. The sun is the crown chakra of the body of our solar system, and the solar system itself is a great deity “in which we live and move and have our being”, as the old adage affirms. The solar deity is a macrocosmic example of the human microcosm, with its mental, emotional and physical vehicles of expression. Similarly, an atom is the microcosmic reflection of the human being and, in its turn, the sun is but a microcosmic expression of something far greater, and so it goes on unto Infinity. Through the cosmic evolutionary process, every atom is destined to become a sun and more, as the One Universal Being – God – expands eternally.
Returning to our local solar system, the same essential laws apply to both the sun and the soul of man. In observing our physical sun we might regard with due awe its natural ability to draw power from an evidently limitless source, and to subsequently bestow light, heat and other life-giving energies continually upon all creatures and forms of life within its boundaries, its body. The same applies to the human microcosm, and through the soul of man flow the vital energies that nourish and sustain all the bodily processes – subtle and physical – providing the life-force and intelligence of each cell and every single atom that constitutes the human being; thus the soul – or personal deity – informs and animates the very consciousness of man.
Now, the sun shines! It does not try to shine; it does not perform rituals, resound prayers or practise any kind of spiritual technique in order to gain something or to better itself, and it certainly does not struggle with countless personal problems, desires and fears as does humanity, and this not doing is the secret of its success. Conversely, in man’s personalstruggle for freedom, in his antagonistic efforts to gain happiness for the separate self, in his self-imposed separation from the true and inclusive life of the Spirit, and in his ignorant and exclusive self-regard, he is actually contravening one of life’s greatest laws, and so he must pay the price. Self-orientation contracts consciousness, and in thus obstructing the light of his very own soul from irradiating and expanding his awareness, man prevents his liberation from the darkness, suffering and struggle that have been his lot for ages upon Earth.
The Law of Cause and Effect is insuperable. People become unhappy, get sick and die because in focussing upon the little self – one microscopic mote in a veritable cosmic ocean of like particles – they lose sight of the greater whole of which they, as a personality, are an intrinsic and inseparable element. Man is generally so busy in habitually transgressing universal law that he fails to look, to see, and to therefore take benefit from his macrocosmic exemplar and master: the sun. What is focussed upon grows, and in the constricting focus that man chooses to maintain, he consummates his own “eternal damnation” as he separates himself indefinitely from the rest of Creation: his very own Greater Self. Thus, as long as man chooses to remain wallowing in the primeval mire of his selfish and fearful self, then his separation from God, the Fall from Grace and Lucifer’s (mankind’s) banishment from Paradise will be perpetuated.
Unhappiness, discord and disease are unnatural phenomena. They do not constitute part of the Universal Harmony and are not a design of the Divine Plan of Perfection. They are mankind’s creations, as are all problems on Earth. With a little imagination it is not difficult to ascertain what would transpire if our sun were to follow man’s example! And if every sun throughout the Cosmos were to do the same, then all the stars in the firmament would grow dim, flicker and die; the universe would be no more and God would expire! Today, Mother Earth is painfully close to just such a fate, and she, along with all humanity, bears testimony to the world-disharmony that we, as a race, have perpetrated in our forgetfulness of universal law. Yet the sun still shines, as it will indefinitely, just as long as it maintains its selfless focus and continues to surrender to the great Law of Love. And in recalling to mind the sun’s perfect example whenever we find ourselves feeling any lack of vitality or inspiration, we may begin to reverse our downward-spiralling course into darkness by looking past the little self and into Life, by helping others, by giving to the world and by living for the greater good, just like the sun. Thus, we, too, will shine forever.
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In selflessly serving the One Spirit in all – starting perhaps with our immediate friends, family, associates or our group – we shall find that our own highest needs are met by way of such service. Once the spiritual heart is thus kindled and set aflame in loving service to others, all personal problems resume their correct perspective and begin to dissolve effortlessly. For example, during times of great misfortune or disaster, the soul of humanity naturally responds to the greater needs, and thus in finding purpose through crisis our own personal problems lose their immediacy and may even cease to figure in our awareness altogether. At this present stage of human development on Earth the clarion call of the New Spirit is sounding urgently forth and is entreating every heart to willingly give up the futile search for personal gain – material or spiritual – and to look toward the greater needs of the world. It seeks to elucidate and evoke within us all the wisdom in joining hands together as one, for the sake of the realisation of a larger and brighter vision for the whole planet.
The grace of the times may only be received by the virtuous, and in thus becoming illumined by the liberating Aquarian energies, an awareness of the many previously concealed yet vital lessons in life may be appreciated. When we are able to really see, everyone and everything becomes a reliable tutor, the Book of Nature is opened and its secrets are revealed, divine-contact is established and, therefore, intuition is awakened. True intuition always impels one to do the greatest good for the largest number of people, for if one is attuned to the Spirit via one’s own soul, then one is also aligned to some degree with the Divine Plan, and the Divine Plan is, in turn, designed for the benefit of everyone. Intuition, therefore, being ever unselfish, may be rightfully regarded as group-perception, that is, vision afforded by attunement to divine law for the good of all. Selflessness is the golden key that will avail each person today of the greatest blessing in the world, which is given in order to be shared with others, and when the door of present opportunity is unlocked, opened and the threshold crossed, sincere aspirants will find themselves upon the Path of progressive spiritual liberation in service to their fellows.
Service may be rendered at many different levels, of course, but in order to offer true, spiritual counsel, a sound occult knowledge is essential. The greatest purpose of knowledge, once attained, is its practical application in life, for only through experience is wisdom gained. Furthermore, knowledge cannot be fully realised if kept to oneself; knowledge is for sharing. The person of knowledge who lacks a good heart is like the bee without honey, and it is a fact that the knowledge which is not shared with others eventually becomes a poison to the one who clings to it for self. However, it is an infallible universal law that when we give selflessly we receive more spiritually in return. There is a wonderful divine premium to be had in the experience of lovingly sharing higher knowledge openly with others for their good, and this is just one of the rewards found upon the Path of Service. By forgetting this simple yet foremost and eternal spiritual principle of giving, we allow ourselves to remain in the illusion of our lonely selfhood, the forces of which shall keep us deluded, maintaining our segregation and struggle for as long as we abide in our forgetfulness of our inseparable relationship to the greater whole.
The erroneous yet popular idea that a man cannot serve others adequately until he has reached a greater level of spiritual attainment – perhaps through meditation or some other discipline – is a pretext of the ego, which has always and will ever attempt to retard real progress, and is especially devious and deleterious today due to its intensified battle upon Earth with the Forces of Liberation. The ego is a seasoned liar and is exceedingly resourceful in supplying false, even if seemingly logical arguments to the conscious mind in order to hamper a person from moving forward onto the liberating Path of Service. It should be remembered that the ego always seeks to protract its own separate and selfish existence, and will do its utmost to prevent a person from effecting its dissolution by becoming selfless. Conversely, and in demanding the attention of the Spirit, loving service is the great nemesis of the ego, for it threatens its very existence, an existence that is painful because it guarantees separation and therefore suffering. Selfless service, then, is the quickest and most effective way to dissolve the illusion of the separate ego, and to consequently unite with the All.
It should ever be born in mind that there is no life activity, no vocational calling, no mental occupation, and no condition which does not provide the key with that each man may unlock the next appropriate door for himself; the door that shall usher him forth into a brighter reality and serve to lead him towards the mountain top from where a wider horizon can be seen and a larger spiritual vision attained. The key is opportunity to serve, and when this truth is seen it becomes clear that absolutely everyone can begin serving humbly as they are able by starting from right where they are, as all the great saints and spiritual masters have done. It all began for them with one kind thought, and these eminent benefactors of the race proceeded from there to clearly and repeatedly demonstrate to humanity that for every single flower of love and charity a person plants in their neighbour’s garden, an undesirable and troublesome weed shall disappear from his own.
It has been repeatedly averred by all the religious teachings and enunciations of the great spiritual leaders throughout mankind’s history that individuality is really one with the whole; it has been clearly pointed out that the belief in the illusion of a separate self and the consequent indulging thereof is the cause of all segregation and suffering. Furthermore, should we pause to reflect upon the obvious fact that an infinitely larger portion of the Cosmos exists apart from the little self, then we are likely to appreciate the relative insignificance of that self as well as the enormously greater substance, magnitude and import with regard to all that is not of the self. With this in mind the seemingly separate individual would do well to consider the wisdom of never having any interests that are opposed to the universal laws that guide and govern all Creation. Of course, the selfishness of egotism is diametrically opposed to one such law: the sacred Law of Love, and so, like one’s shadow, trouble will necessarily follow the transgressor of that law. Yet the plain truth is that in helping others lies our own greatest good, and spiritual aspirants are most truly progressing when they assist the progress of their fellows.
Ancient wisdom states that the divine Helpers of the race can do little more for men than they would do for other men. The Law of Love is paradoxical to the grasping self, for Love must be given in order to be received. If we would not lose that which we have gained, then we must give it away. Loving hearts will most readily be able to enter the New World, and so all who possess real spiritual understanding today will be naturally disposed toward embarking upon the path of active service. It may be observed that genuine servers generally demonstrate a happiness and joyful spirit that is ever absent amongst all self-seeking minds. They know well that in true service the garden of the gods – humanity – unfolds and blossoms into a truer, more divine expression, and so they happily demonstrate that the path of spiritual service is the most splendid, noble and holy way; it is the Royal Road for which all other disciplines are but preparatory. This may be easily verified by noting how all the great spiritual teachers and leaders throughout history have trodden the path of selfless service. If there ever was one solution to absolutely every problem throughout mankind’s history, all the way up to the present and on into Eternity, it must surely be . . . serve, and keep serving; give, and never stop giving.
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For many people today there is some confusion as to who to serve and how. The solution is, however, exquisitely simple. The divine essence of all human beings, without exception, loves the Truth. Virtually every single person in the world has a divine spark in the heart, and if that indwelling life can be contacted, roused and drawn forth through the personality, then a most worthy spiritual service will have been rendered. Therefore, our spiritual service may be offered to virtually everyone we meet. Due to humanity’s current need, opportunity and present stage of development, the question of how to serve is also very straightforward indeed, and the answer lies in your hands. Generally, the most valuable service that may be given today in this unique period is to spread the vital truth of the times and so present others with the choice that they must make in these last days of the cycle. Soon after this process is commenced by one who has recognised and understood that truth for themselves, and so is confident in reaching out to others with sincerity and altruistic motive, the Spirit will take over as divine-contact is established. “Have no fear for what ye shall say, for the Holy Breath will speak through you.” – Jesus. Thus, when right understanding allows us to forget the personal self in informed consecration to the furtherance of the Divine Plan upon Earth, service upon the Path of Love becomes as effortless as it is joyful.
In devoted service our awareness of the wondrous adventure of life grows ever brighter, each moment becoming more meaningful, expansive, joyous and liberating as we are progressively illumined by the light of the Spirit. Thereafter we have little other sane choice than to continue reaching out to humanity with our emancipating inner realisations, and in thus serving others, we shall be tacitly inviting all those who would accompany us upon our return journey back to the divine Kingdom. Certain very beneficent results are always assured by genuine devotion expressed in service. These include vitality, healing, expanded awareness, joy, spiritual unfoldment, and so much more. It must be so because service is love in action, and is therefore governed by a supreme divine law: the Law of Love. The effects of positive causes created by selfless service are far-reaching indeed. Unlike the temporary and self-effacing results of all selfish deeds, the favourable effects of Love endure eternally, for the substance of Love constitutes the quintessence of the Universe.
When we cease in our seeking for ourselves alone, and so in knowing greater freedom from the burdens created by personal desire we are able to demonstrate compassion and goodwill to others, we open a channel for the Love of Spirit to flow through us. Love for all beings is known only upon the one True Road that leads back to Unity. Through service to mankind we shall allow that divine Love to manifest; such is the Way of the Higher Evolution, and such is the sure and only way to lasting spiritual fulfilment and happiness.
A Parable of Heaven and Hell
There once was a devoted priest who wished to see both heaven and hell, and God gave way to his pleading.
The priest found himself before a door which bore no name. He trembled as he saw it open before him into a large room where all was prepared for a feast. There was a table, and at its centre a great dish of steaming food. The smell and the aroma inflamed the appetite.
Diners sat around the table with great spoons in their hands, yet they were shrieking with hunger in that terrible place. They tried to feed themselves, and gave up, cursing God, for the spoons that God had provided were so long that they could not reach their faces and get the food to their tongues. So they starved, while their dish of plenty lay amongst them. The priest knew their screams were the cries of hell, and as this understanding came, the door closed before him.
He shut his eyes in prayer and begged God to take him away from that terrible place. When he opened them again, he despaired, for the same door stood before him, the door that bore no name. Again it opened, and it gave onto the same room. Nothing had changed, and he was about to cry in horror. There was the table, and at its centre the steaming dish, and around it were the same people, and in their hands the same spoons.
Yet the shrieking had gone, and the cries and the curses had changed to blessings; and nothing had changed, yet everything. For with the same long spoons they reached to each other’s mouths and fed one another, and they gave thanks to God.
And as the priest heard the blessings, the door closed. He fell to his knees, and he too blessed God who had shown him the nature of heaven and hell, and the chasm – a hair’s breadth wide – that divides them.
Next: Keys to Awakening