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Guide to Advanced Yoga


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Guide to Advanced Yoga Techniques

Table of Contents
PART 1 .......................................................................... 3
THE FIRST LESSON - THE "I" ............................................................................................................... 3
THE SECOND LESSON - THE EGO'S MENTAL TOOLS ........................................................................ 13
THE THIRD LESSON - THE EXPANSION OF THE SELF ........................................................................ 23
THE FOURTH LESSON - MENTAL CONTROL ..................................................................................... 33
THE FIFTH LESSON - THE CULTIVATION OF ATTENTION.................................................................. 43
THE SIXTH LESSON - CULTIVATION OF PERCEPTION ....................................................................... 54
THE SEVENTH LESSON - THE UNFOLDMENT OF CONSCIOUSNESS.................................................. 64
THE EIGHTH LESSON - THE HIGHLANDS AND LOWLANDS OF MIND............................................... 74
THE NINTH LESSON - THE MENTAL PLANES .................................................................................... 85
THE TENTH LESSON - SUB-CONSCIOUSING ..................................................................................... 95
THE ELEVENTH LESSON - SUBCONSCIOUS CHARACTER BUILDING ............................................... 105
THE TWELFTH LESSON - SUB-CONSCIOUS INFLUENCES ................................................................ 115

PART 2 ...................................................................... 125
THE FIRST LESSON - THE ONE ........................................................................................................ 125
THE SECOND LESSON - OMNIPRESENT LIFE .................................................................................. 136
THE THIRD LESSON - THE CREATIVE WILL ..................................................................................... 146
THE FOURTH LESSON - THE UNITY OF LIFE ................................................................................... 156
THE FIFTH LESSON - THE ONE AND THE MANY ............................................................................. 167
THE SIXTH LESSON - WITHIN THE MIND OF THE ONE ................................................................... 178
THE SEVENTH LESSON - COSMIC EVOLUTION ............................................................................... 189
THE EIGHTH LESSON - THE ASCENT OF MAN ................................................................................ 199
THE NINTH LESSON - METEMPSYCHOSIS ...................................................................................... 210
THE TENTH LESSON - SPIRITUAL EVOLUTION................................................................................ 221
THE ELEVENTH LESSON - THE LAW OF KARMA ............................................................................. 231
THE TWELFTH LESSON - OCCULT MISCELLANY ............................................................................. 241

CONCLUSION ........................................................... 251 Page 2
Guide to Advanced Yoga Techniques

In India, the Candidates for Initiation into the science of "Raja Yoga," when they apply to the Yogi
Masters for instruction, are given a series of lessons designed to enlighten them regarding the
nature of the Real Self, and to instruct them in the secret knowledge whereby they may develop
the consciousness and realization of the real "I" within them. They are shown how they may cast
aside the erroneous or imperfect knowledge regarding their real identity.

Until the Candidate masters this instruction, or at least until the truth becomes fixed in his
consciousness, further instruction is denied him, for it is held that until he has awakened to a
conscious realization of his Actual Identity, he is not able to understand the source of his power,
and, moreover, is not able to feel within him the power of the Will, which power underlies the
entire teachings of "Raja Yoga."

The Yogi Masters are hot satisfied if the Candidate forms merely a clear intellectual conception of
this Actual Identity, but they insist that he must feel the truth of the same--must become aware of
the Real Self--must enter into a consciousness in which the realization becomes a part of his
everyday self--in which the realizing consciousness becomes the prevailing idea in his mind, around
which his entire thoughts and actions revolve.

To some Candidates, this realization comes like a lightning flash the moment the attention is
directed toward it, while in other cases the Candidates find it necessary to follow a rigorous course
of training before they acquire the realization in consciousness.

The Yogi Masters teach that there are two degrees of this awakening consciousness of the Real Self.
The first, which they call "the Consciousness of the 'I'," is the full consciousness of real existence
that comes to the Candidate, and which causes him to know that he is a real entity having a life not
depending upon the body--life that will go on in spite of the destruction of the body--real life, in
fact. The second degree, which they call "the Consciousness of the 'I AM'," is the consciousness of
one's identity with the Universal Life, and his relationship to, and "in-touchness" with all life,
expressed and unexpressed. These two degrees of consciousness come in time to all who seek "The
Path." To some it comes suddenly; to others it dawns gradually; to many it comes assisted by the
exercises and practical work of "Raja Yoga."

The first lesson of the Yogi Masters to the Candidates, leading up to the first degree, above
mentioned, is as follows: That the Supreme Intelligence of the Universe--the Absolute--has
manifested the being that we call Man--the highest manifestation on this planet. The Absolute has
manifested an infinitude of forms of life in the Universe, including distant worlds, suns, planets,
etc., many of these forms being unknown to us on this planet, and being impossible of conception
by the mind of the ordinary man. But these lessons have nothing to do with that part of the
philosophy which deals with these myriad forms of life, for our time will be taken up with the
unfoldment in the mind of man of his true nature and power. Before man attempts to solve the
secrets of the Universe without, he should master the Universe within--the Kingdom of the Self.
When he has accomplished this, then he may, and should, go forth to gain the outer knowledge as Page 3
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a Master demanding its secrets, rather than as a slave begging for the crumbs from the table of
knowledge. The first knowledge for the Candidate is the knowledge of the Self.

Man, the highest manifestation of the Absolute, as far as this planet is concerned, is a wonderfully
organized being--although the average man understands but little of his real nature. He comprises
within his physical, mental and spiritual make-up both the highest and the lowest, as we have
shown in our previous lessons (the "Fourteen Lessons" and the "Advanced Course"). In his bones he
manifests almost in the form of mineral life, in fact, in his bones, body and blood mineral
substances actually exist. The physical life of the body resembles the life of the plant. Many of the
physical desires and emotions are akin to those of the lower animals, and in the undeveloped man
these desires and emotions predominate and overpower the higher nature, which latter is scarcely
in evidence. Then Man has a set of mental characteristics that are his own, and which are not
possessed by the lower animals (See "Fourteen Lessons"). And in addition to the mental faculties
common to all men, or rather, that are in evidence in a greater or lesser degree among all men,
there are still higher faculties latent within Man, which when manifested and expressed render
Man more than ordinary Man. The unfoldment of these latent faculties is possible to all who have
reached the proper stage of development, and the desire and hunger of the student for this
instruction is caused by the pressure of these unfolding latent faculties, crying to be born into
consciousness. Then there is that wonderful thing, the Will, which is but faintly understood by
those ignorant of the Yogi Philosophy--the Power of the Ego--its birthright from the Absolute.

But while these mental and physical things belong to Man, they are not the Man himself. Before
the Man is able to master, control, and direct the things belonging to him--his tools and
instruments--he must awaken to a realization of Himself. He must be able to distinguish between
the "I" and the "Not I." And this is the first task before the Candidate.

That which is the Real Self of Man is the Divine Spark sent forth from the Sacred Flame. It is the
Child of the Divine Parent. It is Immortal--Eternal--Indestructible--Invincible. It possesses within
itself Power, Wisdom, and Reality. But like the infant that contains within itself the sometime Man,
the mind of Man is unaware of its latent and potential qualities, and does not know itself. As it
awakens and unfolds into the knowledge of its real nature, it manifests its qualities, and realizes
what the Absolute has given it. When the Real Self begins to awaken, it sets aside from itself those
things which are but appendages to it, but which it, in its half-waking state, had regarded as its Self.
Setting aside first this, and then that, it finally discards all of the "Not I," leaving the Real Self free
and delivered from its bondage to its appendages. Then it returns to the discarded appendages,
and makes use of them.

In considering the question: "What is the Real Self?" let us first stop to examine what man usually
means when he says "I."

The lower animals do not possess this "I" sense. They are conscious of the outer world; of their own
desires and animal cravings and feelings. But their consciousness has not reached the
Self-conscious stage. They are not able to think of themselves as separate entities, and to reflect
upon their thoughts. They are not possessed of a consciousness of the Divine Spark--the Ego--the
Real Self. The Divine Spark is hidden in the lower forms of life--even in the lower forms of human Page 4
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life--by many sheaths that shut out its light. But, nevertheless, it is there, always. It sleeps within
the mind of the savage--then, as he unfolds, it begins to throw out its light. In you, the Candidate, it
is fighting hard to have its beams pierce through the material coverings When the Real Self begins
to arouse itself from its sleep, its dreams vanish from it, and it begins to see the world as it is, and
to recognize itself in Reality and not as the distorted thing of its dreams.

The savage and barbarian are scarcely conscious of the "I." They are but a little above the animal in
point of consciousness, and their "I" is almost entirely a matter of the consciousness of the wants of
the body; the satisfaction of the appetites; the gratification of the passions; the securing of
personal comfort; the expression of lust, savage power, etc. In the savage the lower part of the
Instinctive Mind is the seat of the "I." (See "Fourteen Lessons" for explanation of the several mental
planes of man.) If the savage could analyze his thoughts he would say that the "I" was the physical
body, the said body having certain "feelings," "wants" and "desires." The "I" of such a man is a
physical "I," the body representing its form and substance. Not only is this true of the savage, but
even among so-called "civilized" men of to-day we find many in this stage. They have developed
powers of thinking and reasoning, but they do not "live in their minds" as do some of their
brothers. They use their thinking powers for the gratification of their bodily desires and cravings,
and really live on the plane of the Instinctive Mind. Such a person may speak of "my mind," or "my
soul," not from a high position where he looks upon these things from the standpoint of a Master
who realizes his Real Self, but from below, from the point-of-view of the man who lives on the
plane of the Instinctive Mind and who sees above himself the higher attributes. To such people the
body is the "I." Their "I" is bound up with the senses, and that which comes to them through the
senses. Of course, as Man advances in "culture" and "civilization," his senses become educated, and
are satisfied only with more refined things, while the less cultivated man is perfectly satisfied with
the more material and gross sense gratifications. Much that we call "cultivation" and "culture" is
naught but a cultivation of a more refined form of sense gratification, instead of a real advance in
consciousness and unfoldment. It is true that the advanced student and Master is possessed of
highly developed senses, often far surpassing those of the ordinary man, but in such cases the
senses have been cultivated under the mastery of the Will, and are made servants of the Ego
instead of things hindering the progress of the soul--they are made servants instead of masters.

As Man advances in the scale, he begins to have a somewhat higher conception of the "I." He
begins to use his mind and reason, and he passes on to the Mental Plane--his mind begins to
manifest upon the plane of Intellect. He finds that there is something within him that is higher than
the body. He finds that his mind seems more real to him than does the physical part of him, and in
times of deep thought and study he is able almost to forget the existence of the body.

In this second stage, Man soon becomes perplexed. He finds problems that demand an answer, but
as soon as he thinks he has answered them the problems present themselves in a new phase, and
he is called upon to "explain his explanation." The mind, even although not controlled and directed
by the Will, has a wonderful range, but, nevertheless, Man finds himself traveling around and
around in a circle, and realizes that he is confronted continually by the Unknown. This disturbs him,
and the higher the stage of "book learning" he attains, the more disturbed does he become. The
man of but little knowledge does not see the existence of many problems that force themselves Page 5
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before the attention of the man of more knowledge, and demand an explanation from him. The
tortures of the man who has attained the mental growth that enables him to see the new problems
and the impossibility of their answer, cannot be imagined by one who has not advanced to that

The man in this stage of consciousness thinks of his "I" as a mental thing, having a lower
companion, the body. He feels that he has advanced, but yet his "I" does not give him the answer
to the riddles and questions that perplex him. And he becomes most unhappy. Such men often
develop into Pessimists, and consider the whole of life as utterly evil and disappointing--a curse
rather than a blessing. Pessimism belongs to this plane, for neither the Physical Plane man or the
Spiritual Plane man have this curse of Pessimism. The former man has no such disquieting thoughts,
for he is almost entirely absorbed in gratifying his animal nature, while the latter man recognizes
his mind as an instrument of himself, rather than as himself, and knows it to be imperfect in its
present stage of growth. He knows that he has in himself the key to all knowledge--locked up in the
Ego--and which the trained mind, cultivated, developed and guided by the awakened Will, may
grasp as it unfolds. Knowing this the advanced man no longer despairs, and, recognizing his real
nature, and his possibilities, as he awakens into a consciousness of his powers and capabilities, he
laughs at the old despondent, pessimistic ideas, and discards them like a worn-out garment. Man
on the Mental Plane of consciousness is like a huge elephant who knows not his own strength. He
could break down barriers and assert himself over nearly any condition or environment, but in his
ignorance of his real condition and power he may be mastered by a puny driver, or frightened by
the rustling of a piece of paper.

When the Candidate becomes an Initiate--when he passes from the purely Mental Plane on to the
Spiritual Plane--he realizes that the "I," the Real Self--is something higher than either body or mind,
and that both of the latter may be used as tools and instruments by the Ego or "I." This knowledge
is not reached by purely intellectual reasoning, although such efforts of the mind are often
necessary to help in the unfoldment, and the Masters so use it. The real knowledge, however,
comes as a special form of consciousness. The Candidate becomes "aware" of the real "I," and this
consciousness being attained, he passes to the rank of the Initiates. When the Initiate passes the
second degree of consciousness, and begins to grow into a realization of his relationship to the
Whole--when he begins to manifest the Expansion of Self--then is he on the road to Mastership.

In the present lesson we shall endeavor to point out to the Candidate the methods of developing or
increasing the realization of this "I" consciousness--this first degree work. We give the following
exercises or development drills for the Candidate to practice. He will find that a careful and
conscientious following of these directions will tend to unfold in him a sufficient degree of the "I"
consciousness, to enable him to enter into higher stages of development and power. All that is
necessary is for the Candidate to feel within himself the dawn of the awakening consciousness, or
awareness of the Real Self. The higher stages of the "I" consciousness come gradually, for once on
the Path there is no retrogression or going backward. There may be pauses on the journey, but
there is no such thing as actually losing that which is once gained on The Path.

This "I" consciousness, even in its highest stages, is but a preliminary step toward what is called
"Illumination," and which signifies the awakening of the Initiate to a realization of his actual Page 6
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connection with and relation to the Whole. The full sight of the glory of the "I," is but a faint
reflected glow of "Illumination." The Candidate, once that he enters fully into the "I" consciousness,
becomes an "Initiate." And the Initiate who enters into the dawn of Illumination takes his first step
upon the road to Mastery. The Initiation is the awakening of the soul to a knowledge of its real
existence--the Illumination is the revelation of the real nature of the soul, and of its relationship
with the Whole. After the first dawn of the "I" consciousness has been attained, the Candidate is
more able to grasp the means of developing the consciousness to a still higher degree--is more able
to use the powers latent within him; to control his own mental states; to manifest a Centre of
Consciousness and Influence that will radiate into the outer world which is always striving and
hunting for such centres around which it may revolve.

Man must master himself before he can hope to exert an influence beyond himself. There is no
royal road to unfoldment and power--each step must be taken in turn, and each Candidate must
take the step himself, and by his own effort. But he may, and will, be aided by the helping hand of
the teachers who have traveled The Path before him, and who know just when that helping hand is
needed to lift the Candidate over the rough places.

We bid the Candidate to pay strict attention to the following instruction, as it is all important. Do
not slight any part of it, for we are giving you only what is necessary, and are stating it as briefly as
possible. Pay attention, and follow the instruction closely. This lesson must be mastered before you
progress. And it must be practiced not only now, but at many stages of the journey, until full
Initiation and Illumination is yours.


The first instruction along the line of Initiation is designed to awaken the mind to a full realization
and consciousness of the individuality of the "I." The Candidate is taught to relax his body, and to
calm his mind and to meditate upon the "I" until it is presented clearly and sharply before the
consciousness. We herewith give directions for producing the desired physical and mental
condition, in which meditation and concentration are more readily practiced. This state of
Meditation will be referred to in subsequent exercises, so the Candidate is advised to acquaint
himself thoroughly with it.

STATE OF MEDITATION. If possible, retire to a quiet place or room, where you do not fear
interruption, so that your mind may feel secure and at rest. Of course, the ideal condition cannot
always be obtained, in which case you must do the best you can. The idea is that you should be able
to abstract yourself, so far as is possible, from distracting impressions, and you should be alone
with yourself--in communion with your Real Self.

It is well to place yourself in an easy chair, or on a couch, so that you may relax the muscles and
free the tension of your nerves. You should be able to "let go" all over, allowing every muscle to
become limp, until a feeling of perfect peace and restful calm permeates every particle of your
being. Rest the body and calm the mind. This condition is best in the earlier stages of the practice,
although after the Candidate has acquired a degree of mastery he will be able to obtain the
physical relaxation and mental calm whenever and wherever he desires. Page 7
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But he must guard against acquiring a "dreamy" way of going around, wrapped in meditation when
he should be attending to the affairs of life. Remember this, the State of Meditation should be
entirely under the control of the Will, and should be entered into only deliberately and at the
proper times. The Will must be master of this, as well as of every other mental state. The Initiates
are not "day dreamers," but men and women having full control of themselves and their moods.
The "I" consciousness while developed by meditation and consciousness, soon becomes a fixed
item of consciousness, and does not have to be produced by meditation. In time of trial, doubt, or
trouble, the consciousness may be brightened by an effort of the Will (as we shall explain in
subsequent lessons) without going into the State of Meditation.

THE REALIZATION OF THE "I." The Candidate must first acquaint himself with the reality of the "I,"
before he will be able to learn its real nature. This is the first step. Let the Candidate place himself
in the State of Meditation, as heretofore described. Then let him concentrate his entire attention
upon his Individual Self, shutting out all thought of the outside world, and other persons. Let him
form in his mind the idea of himself as a real thing--an actual being--an individual entity--a Sun
around which revolves the world. He must see himself as the Centre around which the whole world
revolves. Let not a false modesty, or sense of depreciation interfere with this idea, for you are not
denying the right of others to also consider themselves centres. You are, in fact, a centre of
consciousness--made so by the Absolute--and you are awakening to the fact. Until the Ego
recognizes itself as a Centre of Thought, Influence and Power, it will not be able to manifest these
qualities. And in proportion as it recognizes its position as a centre, so will it be able to manifest its
qualities. It is not necessary that you should compare yourself with others, or imagine yourself
greater or higher than them. In fact, such comparisons are to be regretted, and are unworthy of the
advanced Ego, being a mark and indication of a lack of development, rather than the reverse. In the
Meditation simply ignore all consideration of the respective qualities of others, and endeavor to
realize the fact that YOU are a great Centre of Consciousness--a Centre of Power--a Centre of
Influence--a Centre of Thought. And that like the planets circling around the sun, so does your
world revolve around YOU who are its centre. It will not be necessary for you to argue out this
matter, or to convince yourself of its truth by intellectual reasoning. The knowledge does not come
in that way. It comes in the shape of a realization of the truth gradually dawning upon your
consciousness through meditation and concentration. Carry this thought of yourself as a "Centre of
Consciousness--Influence--Power" with you, for it is an occult truth, and in the proportion that you
are able, to realize it so will be your ability to manifest the qualities named.

No matter how humble may be your position--no matter how hard may be your lot--no matter how
deficient in educational advantages you may be--still you would not change your "I" with the most
fortunate, wisest and highest man or woman in the world. You may doubt this, but think for a
moment and you will see that we are right. When you say that you "would like to be" this person or
that, you really mean that you would like to have their degree of intelligence, power, wealth,
position, or what not. What you want is something that is theirs, or something akin to it. But you
would not for a moment wish to merge your identity with theirs, or to exchange selves. Think of
this for a moment To be the other person you would have to let yourself die, and instead of
yourself you would be the other person. The real you would be wiped out of existence, and you
would not be you at all, but would be he. Page 8
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If you can but grasp this idea you will see that not for a moment would you be willing for such an
exchange. Of course such an exchange is impossible. The "I" of you cannot be wiped out. It is
eternal, and will go on, and on, and on, to higher and higher states--but it always will be the same
"I." Just as you, although a far different sort of person from your childhood self, still you recognize
that the same "I" is there, and always has been there. And although you will attain knowledge,
experience, power and wisdom in the coming years, the same "I" will be there. The "I" is the Divine
Spark and cannot be extinguished.

The majority of people in the present stage of the race development have but a faint conception of
the reality of the "I." They accept the statement of its existence, and are conscious of themselves as
an eating, sleeping, living creature--something like a higher form of animal. But they have not
awakened to an "awareness" or realization of the "I," which must come to all who become real
centres of Influence and Power. Some men have stumbled into this consciousness, or a degree of it,
without understanding the matter. They have "felt" the truth of it, and they have stepped out from
the ranks of the commonplace people of the world, and have become powers for good or bad. This
is unfortunate to some extent, as this "awareness" without the knowledge that should accompany
it may bring pain to the individual and others.

The Candidate must meditate upon the "I," and recognize it--feel it--to be a Centre. This is his first
task. Impress upon your mind the word "I," in this sense and understanding, and let it sink deep
down into your consciousness, so that it will become a part of you. And when you say "I," you must
accompany the word with the picture of your Ego as a Centre of Consciousness, and Thought, and
Power, and Influence. See yourself thus, surrounded by your world. Wherever you go, there goes
the Centre of your world. YOU are the Centre, and all outside of you revolves around that Centre.
This is the first great lesson on the road to Initiation. Learn it!

The Yogi Masters teach the Candidates that their realization of the "I" as a Centre may be hastened
by going into the Silence, or State of Meditation, and repeating their first name over slowly,
deliberately and solemnly a number of times. This exercise tends to cause the mind to centre upon
the "I," and many cases of dawning Initiation have resulted from this practice. Many original
thinkers have stumbled upon this method, without having been taught it. A noted example is that
of Lord Tennyson, who has written that he attained a degree of Initiation in this way. He would
repeat his own name, over and over, and the same time meditating upon his identity, and he
reports that he would become conscious and "aware" of his reality and immortality--in short would
recognize himself as a real center of consciousness.

We think we have given you the key to the first stage of meditation and concentration. Before
passing on, let us quote from one of the old Hindu Masters. He says, regarding this matter: "When
the soul sees itself as a Centre surrounded by its circumference--when the Sun knows that it is a
Sun, and is surrounded by its whirling planets--then is it ready for the Wisdom and Power of the

themselves prevented from a full realization of the "I" (even after they have begun to grasp it) by
the confusing of the reality of the "I" with the sense of the physical body. This is a stumbling block Page 9
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that is easily overcome by meditation and concentration, the independence of the "I" often
becoming manifest to the Candidate in a flash, upon the proper thought being used as the subject
of meditation.

The exercise is given as follows: Place yourself in the State of Meditation, and think of
YOURSELF--the Real "I"--as being independent of the body, but using the body as a covering and an
instrument. Think of the body as you might of a suit of clothes. Realize that you are able to leave
the body, and still be the same "I." Picture yourself as doing this, and looking down upon your body.
Think of the body as a shell from which you may emerge without affecting your identity. Think of
yourself as mastering and controlling the body that you occupy, and using it to the best advantage,
making it healthy, strong and vigorous, but still being merely a shell or covering for the real "You."
Think of the body as composed of atoms and cells which are constantly changing, but which are
held together by the force of your Ego, and which you can improve at Will. Realize that you are
merely inhabiting the body, and using it for your convenience, just as you might use a house.

In meditating further, ignore the body entirely, and place your thought upon the Real "I" that you
are beginning to feel to be "you," and you will find that your identity--your "I"--is something
entirely apart from the body. You may now say "my body" with a new meaning. Divorce the idea of
your being a physical being, and realize that you are above body. But do not let this conception and
realization cause you to ignore the body. You must regard the body as the Temple of the Spirit, and
care for it, and make it a fit habitation for the "I." Do not be frightened if, during this meditation,
you happen to experience the sensation of being out of the body for a few moments, and of
returning to it when you are through with the exercise. The Ego is able (in the case of the advanced
Initiate) of soaring above the confines of the body, but it never severs its connection at such times.
It is merely as if one were to look out of the window of a room, seeing what was going on outside,
and drawing in his head when he wishes. He does not leave the room, although he may place his
head outside in order to observe what is doing in the street. We do not advise the Candidate to try
to cultivate this sensation--but if it comes naturally during meditation, do not fear.

the belief in the Immortality of the Soul, yet but few are aware that it may be demonstrated by the
soul itself. The Yogi Masters teach the Candidates this lesson, as follows: The Candidate places
himself in the State of Meditation, or at least in a thoughtful frame of mind, and then endeavors to
"imagine" himself as "dead"--that is, he tries to form a mental conception of himself as dead. This,
at first thought, appears a very easy thing to imagine, but as a matter of fact it is impossible to do
so, for the Ego refuses to entertain the proposition, and finds it impossible to imagine it. Try it for
yourself. You will find that you may be able to imagine your body as lying still and lifeless, but the
same thought finds that in so doing You are standing and looking at the body. So you see that You
are not dead at all, even in imagination, although the body may be. Or, if you refuse to disentangle
yourself from your body, in imagination, you may think of your body as dead but You who refuse to
leave it are still alive and recognize the dead body as a thing apart from your Real Self. No matter
how you may twist it you cannot imagine yourself as dead. The Ego insists upon being alive in any
of these thoughts, and thus finds that it has within itself the sense and assurance of Immortality. In
case of sleep or stupor resulting from a blow, or from narcotics or anaesthetics, the mind is Page 10
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apparently blank, but the "I" is conscious of a continuity of existence. And so one may imagine
himself as being in an unconscious state, or asleep, quite easily, and sees the possibility of such a
state, but when it comes to imagining the "I" as dead, the mind utterly refuses to do the work. This
wonderful fact that the soul carries within itself the evidence of its own immortality is a glorious
thing, but one must have reached a degree of unfoldment before he is able to grasp its full

The Candidate is advised to investigate the above statement for himself, by meditation and
concentration, for in order that the "I" may know its true nature and possibilities, it must realize
that it cannot be destroyed or killed. It must know what it is before it is able to manifest its nature.
So do not leave this part of the teaching until you have mastered it. And it is well occasionally to
return to it, in order that you may impress upon the mind the fact of your immortal and eternal
nature. The mere glimmering of this conception of truth will give you an increased sense of
strength and power, and you will find that your Self has expanded and grown, and that you are
more of a power and Centre than you have heretofore realized.

The following exercises are useful in bringing about a realization of the invincibility of the Ego--its
superiority to the elements.

Place yourself in the State of Meditation, and imagine the "I" as withdrawn from the body. See it
passing through the tests of air, fire and water unharmed. The body being out of the way, the soul
is seen to be able of passing through the air at will--of floating like a bird--of soaring--of traveling in
the ether. It may be seen as able to pass through fire without harm and without sensation, for the
elements affect only the physical body, not the Real "I." Likewise it may be seen as passing through
water without discomfort or danger or hurt.

This meditation will give you a sense of superiority and strength, and will show you something of
the nature of the real "I." It is true that you are confined in the body, and the body may be affected
by the elements, but the knowledge that the Real "I" is superior to the body--superior to the
elements that affect the body--and cannot be injured any more than it can be killed, is wonderful,
and tends to develop the full "I" consciousness within you. For You--the Real "I"--are not body. You
are Spirit. The Ego is Immortal and Invincible, and cannot be killed and harmed. When you enter
into this realization and consciousness, you will feel an influx of strength and power impossible to
describe. Fear will fall from you like a worn-out cloak, and you will feel that you are "born again."
An understanding of this thought, will show you that the things that we have been fearing cannot
affect the Real

"I," but must rest content with hurting the physical body. And they may be warded off from the
physical body by a proper understanding and application of the Will.

In our next lesson, you will be taught how to separate the "I" from the mechanism of the
mind--how you may realize your mastery of the mind, just as you now realize your independence of
the body. This knowledge must be imparted to you by degrees, and you must place your feet firmly
upon one round of the ladder before you take the next step. Page 11
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The watchword of this First Lesson is "I." And the Candidate must enter fully into its meaning
before he is able to progress. He must realize his real existence--independent of the body. He must
see himself as invincible and impervious to harm, hurt, or death. He must see himself as a great
Centre of Consciousness--a Sun around which his world revolves. Then will come to him a new
strength. He will feel a calm dignity and power, which will be apparent to those with whom he
comes in contact. He will be able to look the world in the face without flinching, and without fear,
for he will realize the nature and power of the "I." He will realize that he is a Centre of Power--of
Influence. He will realize that nothing can harm the "I," and that no matter how the storms of life
may dash upon the personality, the real "I"--the Individuality--is unharmed. Like a rock that stands
steadfast throughout the storm, so does the "I" stand through the tempests of the life of
personality. And he will know that as he grows in realization, he will be able to control these storms
and bid them be still.

In the words of one of the Yogi Masters: "The 'I' is eternal. It passes unharmed through the fire, the
air, the water. Sword and spear cannot kill or wound it. It cannot die. The trials of the physical life
are but as dreams to it. Resting secure in the knowledge of the 'I,' Man may smile at the worst the
world has to offer, and raising his hand he may bid them disappear into the mist from which they
emerged. Blessed is he who can say (understandingly) 'I'."

So dear Candidate, we leave you to master the First Lesson. Be not discouraged if your progress be
slow. Be not cast down if you slip back a step after having gained it. You will gain two at the next
step. Success and realization will be yours. Mastery is before. You will Attain. You will Accomplish.
Peace be with you.


"I" am a Centre. Around me revolves my world.

"I" am a Centre of Influence and Power.

"I" am a Centre of Thought and Consciousness. "I" am Independent of the Body. "I" am Immortal
and cannot be Destroyed. "I" am Invincible and cannot be Injured. [Illustration: "I"] Page 12
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In the First Lesson we gave instruction and exercises designed to awaken the consciousness of the
Candidate to a realization of the real "I." We confined our instructions to the preliminary teachings
of the reality of the "I," and the means whereby the Candidate might be brought to a realization of
his real Self, and its independence from the body and the things of the flesh. We tried to show you
how you might awaken to a consciousness of the reality of the "I"; its real nature; its independence
of the body; its immortality; its invincibility and invulnerability. How well we have succeeded may
be determined only by the experience of each Candidate, for we can but point out the way, and the
Candidate must do the real work himself.

But there is more to be said and done in this matter of awakening to a realization of the "I." So far,
we have but told you how to distinguish between the material coverings of the Ego and the "I"
itself. We have tried to show you that you had a real "I," and then to show you what it was, and
how it was independent of the material coverings, etc. But there is still another step in this self
analysis--a more difficult step. Even when the Candidate has awakened to a realization of his
independence of the body, and material coverings, he often confounds the "I" with the lower
principles of the mind. This is a mistake. The Mind, in its various phases and planes, is but a tool and
instrument of the "I," and is far from being the "I" itself. We shall try to bring out this fact in this
lesson and its accompanying exercises. We shall avoid, and pass by, the metaphysical features of
the case, and shall confine ourselves to the Yogi Psychology. We shall not touch upon theories, nor
attempt to explain the cause, nature and purpose of the Mind--the working tool of the Ego--but
instead shall attempt to point out a way whereby you may analyze the Mind and then determine
which is the "not I" and which is the real "I." It is useless to burden you with theories or
metaphysical talk, when the way to prove the thing is right within your own grasp. By using the
mind, you will be able to separate it into its parts, and force it to give you its own answer to the
questions touching itself.

In the second and third lessons of our "Fourteen Lessons," we pointed out to you the fact that man
had three Mental Principles, or subdivisions of mind, all of which were below the plane of Spirit.
The "I" is Spirit, but its mental principles are of a lower order. Without wishing to unduly repeat
ourselves, we think it better to run hastily over these three Principles in the mind of Man.

First, there is what is known as the Instinctive Mind, which man shares in common with the lower
animals. It is the first principle of mind that appears in the scale of evolution. In its lowest phases,
consciousness is but barely perceptible, and mere sensation is apparent. In its higher stages it
almost reaches the plane of Reason or Intellect, in fact, they overlap each other, or, rather, blend
into each other. The Instinctive Mind does valuable work in the direction of maintaining animal life
in our bodies, it having charge of this part of our being. It attends to the constant work of repair;
replacement; change; digestion; assimilation; elimination, etc., all of which work is performed
below the plane of consciousness.

But this is but a small part of the work of the Instinctive Mind. For this part of the mind has stored
up all the experiences of ourselves and ancestors in our evolution from the lower forms of animal
life into the present stage of evolution. All of the old animal instincts (which were all right in their Page 13
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place, and quite necessary for the well-being of the lower forms of life) have left traces in this part
of the mind, which traces are apt to come to the front under pressure of unusual circumstances,
even long after we think we have outgrown them. In this part of the mind are to be found traces of
the old fighting instinct of the animal; all the animal passions; all the hate, envy, jealousy, and the
rest of it, which are our inheritances from the past. The Instinctive Mind is also the "habit mind" in
which is stored up all the little, and great, habits of many lives, or rather such as have not been
entirely effaced by subsequent habits of a stronger nature. The Instinctive Mind is a queer
storehouse, containing quite a variety of objects, many of them very good in their way, but others
of which are the worst kind of old junk and rubbish.

This part of the mind also is the seat of the appetites; passions; desires; instincts; sensations;
feelings and emotions of the lower order, manifested in the lower animals; primitive man; the
barbarian; and the man of today, the difference being only in the degree of control over them that
has been gained by the higher parts of the mind. There are higher desires, aspirations, etc.,
belonging to a higher part of the mind, which we will describe in a few minutes, but the "animal
nature" belongs to the Instinctive Mind. To it also belong the "feelings" belonging to our emotional
and passional nature. All animal desires, such as hunger and thirst; sexual desires (on the physical
plane); all passions, such as physical love; hatred; envy; malice; jealousy; revenge, etc., are part of
this part of the mind. The desire for the physical (unless a means of reaching higher things) and the
longing for the material, belong to this region of the mind. The "lust of the flesh; the lust of the
eyes; the pride of life," belong to the Instinctive Mind.

Take note, however, that we are not condemning the things belonging to this plane of the mind. All
of them have their place--many were necessary in the past, and many are still necessary for the
continuance of physical life. All are right in their place, and to those in the particular plane of
development to which they belong, and are wrong only when one is mastered by them, or when he
returns to pick up an unworthy thing that has been cast off in the unfoldment of the individual. This
lesson has nothing to do with the right and wrong of these things (we have treated of that
elsewhere) and we mention this part of the mind that you may understand that you have such a
thing in your mental make-up, and that you may understand the thought, etc., coming from it,
when we start in to analyze the mind in the latter part of this lesson. All we will ask you to do at this
stage of the lesson is to realize that this part of the mind, while belonging to you, is not You,
yourself. It is not the "I" part of you.

Next in order, above the Instinctive Mind, is what we have called the Intellect, that part of the mind
that does our reasoning, analyzing; "thinking," etc. You are using it in the consideration of this
lesson. But note this: You are using it, but it is not You, any more than was the Instinctive Mind that
you considered a moment ago. You will begin to make the separation, if you will think but a
moment. We will not take up your time with a consideration of Intellect or Reason. You will find a
good description of this part of the mind in any good elementary work on Psychology. Our only idea
in mentioning it is that you may make the classification, and that we may afterward show you that
the Intellect is but a tool of the Ego, instead of being the real "I" itself, as so many seem to imagine.

The third, and highest, Mental Principle is what is called the Spiritual Mind, that part of the mind
which is almost unknown to many of the race, but which has developed into consciousness with Page 14
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nearly all who read this lesson, for the fact that the subject of this lesson attracts you is a proof that
this part of your mental nature is unfolding into consciousness. This region of the mind is the source
of that which we call "genius," "inspiration," "spirituality," and all that we consider the "highest" in
our mental make-up. All the great thoughts and ideas float into the field of consciousness from this
part of the mind. All the great unfoldment of the race comes from there. All the higher mental
ideas that have come to Man in his upward evolutionary journey, that tend in the direction of
nobility; true religious feeling; kindness; humanity; justice; unselfish love; mercy; sympathy, etc.,
have come to him through his slowly unfolding Spiritual Mind. His love of God and of his fellow man
have come in this way. His knowledge of the great occult truths reach him through this channel.
The mental realization of the "I," which we are endeavoring to teach in these lessons, must come to
him by way of the Spiritual Mind unfolding its ideas into his field of consciousness.

But even this great and wonderful part of the mind is but a tool--a highly finished one, it is true, but
still a tool--to the Ego, or "I."

We propose to give you a little mental drill work, toward the end that

you may be able more readily to distinguish the "I" from the mind, or mental states. In this
connection we would say that every part, plane, and function of the mind is good, and necessary,
and the student must not fall into the error of supposing that because we tell him to set aside first
this part of the mind and then that part, that we are undervaluing the mind, or that we regard it as
an encumbrance or hindrance. Far from this, we realize that it is by the use of the mind that Man is
enabled to arrive at a knowledge of his true nature and Self, and that his progress through many
stages yet will depend upon the unfolding of his mental faculties.

Man is now using but the lower and inferior parts of his mind, and he has within his mental world
great unexplored regions that far surpass anything of which the human mind has dreamed. In fact,
it is part of the business of "Raja Yoga" to aid in unfolding these higher faculties and mental regions.
And so far from decrying the Mind, the "Raja Yoga" teachers are chiefly concerned in recognizing
the Mind's power and possibilities, and directing the student to avail himself of the latent powers
that are inherent in his soul.

It is only by the mind that the teachings we are now giving you may be grasped and understood,
and used to your advantage and benefit. We are talking direct to your mind now, and are making
appeals to it, that it may be interested and may open itself to what is ready to come into it from its
own higher regions. We are appealing to the Intellect to direct its attention to this great matter,
that it may interpose less resistance to the truths that are waiting to be projected from the Spiritual
Mind, which knows the Truth.


Place yourself in a calm, restful condition, that you may be able to meditate upon the matters that
we shall place before you for consideration. Allow the matters presented to meet with a hospitable
reception from you, and hold a mental attitude of willingness to receive what may be waiting for
you in the higher regions of your mind. Page 15
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We wish to call your attention to several mental impressions or conditions, one after another, in
order that you may realize that they are merely something incident to you, and not YOU
yourself--that you may set them aside and consider them, just as you might anything that you have
been using. You cannot set the "I" aside and so consider it, but the various forms of the "not I" may
be so set aside and considered.

In the First Lesson you gained the perception of the "I" as independent from the body, the latter
merely being an instrument for use. You have now arrived at the stage when the "I" appears to you
to be a mental creature--a bundle of thoughts, feelings, moods, etc. But you must go farther. You
must be able to distinguish the "I" from these mental conditions, which are as much tools as is the
body and its parts.

Let us begin by considering the thoughts more closely connected with the body, and then work up
to the higher mental states.

The sensations of the body, such as hunger; thirst; pain; pleasurable sensations; physical desires,
etc., etc., are not apt to be mistaken for essential qualities of the "I" by many of the Candidates, for
they have passed beyond this stage, and have learned to set aside these sensations, to a greater or
lesser extent, by an effort of the Will, and are no longer slaves to them. Not that they do not
experience these sensations, but they have grown to regard them as incidents of the physical
life--good in their place--but useful to the advanced man only when he has mastered them to the
extent that he no longer regards them as close to the "I." And yet, to some people, these sensations
are so closely identified with their conception of the "I" that when they think of themselves they
think merely of a bundle of these sensations. They are not able to set them aside and consider
them as things apart, to be used when necessary and proper, but as things not fastened to the "I."
The more advanced a man becomes the farther off seem these sensations. Not that he does not
feel hungry, for instance. Not at all, for he recognizes hunger, and satisfies it within reason,
knowing that his physical body is making demands for attention, and that these demands should be
heeded. But--mark the difference--instead of feeling that the "I" is hungry the man feels that "my
body" is hungry, just as he might become conscious that his horse or dog was crying for food
insistently. Do you see what we mean? It is that the man no longer identifies himself--the "I"--with
the body, consequently the thoughts which are most closely allied to the physical life seem
comparatively "separate" from his "I" conception. Such a man thinks "my stomach, this," or "my
leg, that," or "my body, thus," instead of "'I,' this," or "'I' that." He is able, almost automatically, to
think of the body and its sensations as things of him, and belonging to him, which require attention
and care, rather than as real parts of the "I." He is able to form a conception of the "I" as existing
without any of these things--without the body and its sensations--and so he has taken the first step
in the realization of the "I."

Before going on, we ask the students to stop a few moments, and mentally run over these
sensations of the body. Form a mental image of them, and realize that they are merely incidents to
the present stage of growth and experience of the "I," and that they form no real part of it. They
may, and will be, left behind in the Ego's higher planes of advancement. You may have attained this
mental conception perfectly, long since, but we ask that to give yourself the mental drill at this
time, in order to fasten upon your mind this first step. Page 16
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In realizing that you are able to set aside, mentally, these sensations--that you are able to hold
them out at arm's length and "consider" them as an "outside" thing, you mentally determine that
they are "not I" things, and you set them down in the "not I" collection--the first to be placed there.
Let us try to make this still plainer, even at the risk of wearying you by repetitions (for you must get
this idea firmly fixed in your mind). To be able to say that a thing is "not I," you must realize that
there are two things in question (1) the "not I" thing, and (2) the "I" who is regarding the "not I"
thing just as the "I" regards a lump of sugar, or a mountain. Do you see what we mean? Keep at it
until you do.

Next, consider some of the emotions, such as anger; hate; love, in its ordinary forms; jealousy;
ambition; and the hundred and one other emotions that sweep through our brains. You will find
that you are able to set each one of these emotions or feelings aside and study it; dissect it; analyze
it; consider it. You will be able to understand the rise, progress and end of each of these feelings, as
they have come to you, and as you recall them in your memory or imagination, just as readily as
you would were you observing their occurrence in the mind of a friend. You will find them all stored
away in some parts of your mental make-up, and you may (to use a modern American slang phrase)
"make them trot before you, and show their paces." Don't you see that they are not "You"--that
they are merely something that you carry around with you in a mental bag. You can imagine
yourself as living without them, and still being "I," can you not?

And the very fact that you are able to set them aside and examine and consider them is a proof that
they are "not I" things--for there are two things in the matter (1) You who are examining and
considering them, and (2) the thing itself which is the object of the examination and consideration
at mental arm's length. So into the "not I" collection go these emotions, desirable and undesirable.
The collection is steadily growing, and will attain quite formidable proportions after a while.

Now, do not imagine that this is a lesson designed to teach you how to discard these emotions,
although if it enables you to get rid of the undesirable ones, so much the better. This is not our
object, for we bid you place the desirable (at this time) ones in with the opposite kind, the idea
being to bring you to a realization that the "I" is higher, above and independent of these mental
somethings, and then when you have realized the nature of the "I," you may return and use (as a
Master) the things that have been using you as a slave. So do not be afraid to throw these emotions
(good and bad) into the "not I" collection. You may go back to them, and use the good ones, after
the Mental Drill is over. No matter how much you may think that you are bound by any of these
emotions, you will realize, by careful analysis, that it is of the "not I" kind, for the "I" existed before
the emotion came into active play, and it will live long after the emotion has faded away. The
principal proof is that you are able to hold it out at arm's length and examine it--a proof that it is
"not I."

Run through the entire list of your feelings; emotions; moods; and what not, just as you would
those of a well-known friend or relative, and you will see that each one--every one--is a "not I"
thing, and you will lay it aside for the time, for the purpose of the scientific experiment, at least.

Then passing on to the Intellect, you will be able to hold out for examination each mental process
and principle. You don't believe it, you may say. Then read and study some good work on Page 17
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Psychology, and you will learn to dissect and analyze every intellectual process--and to classify it
and place it in the proper pigeon-hole. Study Psychology by means of some good text-book, and
you will find that one by one every intellectual process is classified, and talked about and labeled,
just as you would a collection of flowers. If that does not satisfy you, turn the leaves of some work
on Logic, and you will admit that you may hold these intellectual processes at arm's length and
examine them, and talk about them to others. So that these wonderful tools of Man--the
Intellectual powers may be placed in the "not I" collection, for the "I" is capable of standing aside
and viewing them--it is able to detach them from itself. The most remarkable thing about this is
that in admitting this fact, you realize that the "I" is using these very intellectual faculties to pass
upon themselves. Who is the Master that compels these faculties to do this to themselves? The
Master of the Mind--The "I."

And reaching the higher regions of the mind--even the Spiritual Mind, you will be compelled to
admit that the things that have come into consciousness from that region may be considered and
studied, just as may be any other mental thing, and so even these high things must be placed in the
"not I" collection. You may object that this does not prove that all the things in the Spiritual Mind
may be so treated--that there may be "I" things there that can not be so treated. We will not
discuss this question, for you know nothing about the Spiritual Mind except as it has revealed itself
to you, and the higher regions of that mind are like the mind of a God, when compared to what you
call mind. But the evidence of the Illumined--those in whom the Spiritual Mind has wonderfully
unfolded tell us that even in the highest forms of development, the Initiates, yea, even the Masters,
realize that above even their highest mental states there is always that eternal "I" brooding over
them, as the Sun over the lake; and that the highest conception of the "I" known even to advanced
souls, is but a faint reflection of the "I" filtering through the Spiritual Mind, although that Spiritual
Mind is as clear as the clearest crystal when compared with our comparatively opaque mental
states. And the highest mental state is but a tool or instrument of the "I," and is not the "I" itself.

And yet the "I" is to be found in the faintest forms of consciousness, and animates even the
unconscious life. The "I" is always the same, but its apparent growth is the result of the mental
unfoldment of the individual. As we described it in one of the lessons of the "Advanced Course" it is
like an electric lamp that is encased in many wrappings of cloth. As cloth after cloth is removed, the
light seems to grow brighter and stronger, and yet it has changed not, the change being in the
removal of the confining and bedimming coverings. We do not expect to make you realize the "I" in
all its fullness--that is far beyond the highest known to man of to-day--but we do hope to bring you
to a realization of the highest conception of the "I," possible to each of you in your present stage of
unfoldment, and in the process we expect to cause to drop from you some of the confining sheaths
that you have about outgrown. The sheaths are ready for dropping, and all that is required is the
touch of a friendly hand to cause them to fall fluttering from you. We wish to bring you to the
fullest possible (to you) realization of the "I," in order to make an Individual of you--in order that
you may understand, and have courage to take up the tools and instruments lying at your hand,
and do the work before you.

And now, back to the Mental Drill. After you have satisfied yourself that about everything that you
are capable of thinking about is a "not I" thing--a tool and instrument for your use--you will ask, Page 18
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"And now, what is there left that should not be thrown in the "not I" collection." To this question
we answer "THE 'I' ITSELF." And when you demand a proof we say, "Try to set aside the 'I' for
consideration!" You may try from now until the passing away of infinities of infinities, and you will
never be able to set aside the real "I" for consideration. You may think you can, but a little
reflection will show you that you are merely setting aside some of your mental qualities or
faculties. And in this process what is the "I" doing? Simply setting aside and considering things. Can
you not see that the "I" cannot be both the considerer and the thing considered--the examiner and
the thing examined? Can the sun shine upon itself by its own light? You may consider the "I" of
some other person, but it is your "I" that is considering. But you cannot, as an "I," stand aside and
see yourself as an "I." Then what evidence have we that there is an "I" to us? This: that you are
always conscious of being the considerer and examiner, instead of the considered and examined
thing--and then, you have the evidence of your consciousness. And what report does this
consciousness give us? Simply this, and nothing more: "I AM." That is all that the "I" is conscious of,
regarding its true self: "I AM," but that consciousness is worth all the rest, for the rest is but "not I"
tools that the "I" may reach out and use.

And so at the final analysis, you will find that there is something that refuses to be set aside and
examined by the "I." And that something is the "I" itself--that "I" eternal, unchangeable--that drop
of the Great Spirit Ocean--that spark from the Sacred Flame.

Just as you find it impossible to imagine the "I" as dead, so will you find it impossible to set aside
the "I" for consideration--all that comes to you is the testimony: "I AM."

If you were able to set aside the "I" for consideration, who would be the one to consider it? Who
could consider except the "I" itself, and if it be here, how could it be there? The "I" cannot be the
"not I" even in the wildest flights of the imagination--the imagination with all its boasted freedom
and power, confesses itself vanquished when asked to do this thing.

Oh, students, may you be brought to a realization of what you are. May you soon awaken to the
fact that you are sleeping gods--that you have within you the power of the Universe, awaiting your
word to manifest in action. Long ages have you toiled to get this far, and long must you travel
before you reach even the first Great Temple, but you are now entering into the conscious stage of
Spiritual Evolution. No longer will your eyes be closed as you walk the Path. From now on you will
begin to see clearer and clearer each step, in the dawning light of consciousness.

You are in touch with all of life, and the separation of your "I" from the great Universal "I" is but
apparent and temporary. We will tell you of these things in our Third Lesson, but before you can
grasp that you must develop the "I" consciousness within you. Do not lay aside this matter as one
of no importance. Do not dismiss our weak explanation as being "merely words, words, words," as
so many are inclined to do. We are pointing out a great truth to you. Why not follow the leadings of
the Spirit which even now--this moment while you read--is urging you to walk The Path of
Attainment? Consider the teachings of this lesson, and practice the Mental Drill until your mind has
grasped its significance, then let it sink deep down into your inner consciousness. Then will you be
ready for the next lessons, and those to follow. Page 19
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Practice this Mental Drill until you are fully assured of the reality of the "I" and the relativity of the
"not "I" in the mind. When you once grasp this truth, you will find that you will be able to use the
mind with far greater power and effect, for you will recognize that it is your tool and instrument,
fitted and intended to do your bidding. You will be able to master your moods, and emotions when
necessary, and will rise from the position of a slave to a Master.

Our words seem cheap and poor, when we consider the greatness of the truth that we are
endeavoring to convey by means of them. For who can find words to express the inexpressible? All
that we may hope to do is to awaken a keen interest and attention on your part, so that you will
practice the Mental Drill, and thus obtain the evidence of your own mentality to the truth. Truth is
not truth to you until you have proven it in your own experience, and once so proven you cannot
be robbed of it, nor can it be argued away from you.

You must realize that in every mental effort You--the "I"--are behind it. You bid the Mind work, and
it obeys your Will. You are the Master, and not the slave of your mind. You are the Driver, not the
driven. Shake yourself loose from the tyranny of the mind that has oppressed you for so long.
Assert yourself, and be free. We will help you in this direction during the course of these lessons,
but you must first assert yourself as a Master of your Mind. Sign the mental Declaration of
Independence from your moods, emotions, and uncontrolled thoughts, and assert your Dominion
over them. Enter into your Kingdom, thou manifestation of the Spirit!

While this lesson is intended primarily to bring clearly into your consciousness the fact that the "I"
is a reality, separate and distinct from its Mental Tools, and while the control of the mental faculties
by the Will forms a part of some of the future lessons, still, we think that this is a good place to
point out to you the advantages arising from a realization of the true nature of the "I" and the
relative aspect of the Mind.

Many of us have supposed that our minds were the masters of ourselves, and we have allowed
ourselves to be tormented and worried by thoughts "running away" with us, and presenting
themselves at inopportune moments. The Initiate is relieved from this annoyance, for he learns to
assert his mastery over the different parts of the mind, and controls and regulates his mental
processes, just as one would a fine piece of machinery. He is able to control his conscious thinking
faculties, and direct their work to the best advantage, and he also learns how to pass on orders to
the subconscious mental region and bid it work for him while he sleeps, or even when he is using
his conscious mind in other matters. These subjects will be considered by us in due time, during the
course of lessons.

In this connection it may be interesting to read what Edward Carpenter says of the power of the
individual to control his thought processes. In his book "From Adam's Peak to Eleplumta," in
describing his experience while visiting a Hindu Gnani Yogi, he says:

"And if we are unwilling to believe in this internal mastery over the body, we are perhaps almost
equally unaccustomed to the idea of mastery over our own inner thoughts and feelings. That a man
should be a prey to any thought that chances to take possession of his mind, is commonly among us
assumed as unavoidable. It may be a matter of regret that he should be kept awake all night from Page 20
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anxiety as to the issue of a lawsuit on the morrow, but that he should have the power of
determining whether he be kept awake or not seems an extravagant demand. The image of an
impending calamity is no doubt odious, but its very odiousness (we say) makes it haunt the mind all
the more pertinaciously and it is useless to try to expel it.

"Yet this is an absurd position--for man, the heir of all the ages: hag-ridden by the flimsy creatures
of his own brain. If a pebble in our boot torments us, we expel it. We take off the boot and shake it
out. And once the matter is fairly understood it is just as easy to expel an intruding and obnoxious
thought from the mind. About this there ought to be no mistake, no two opinions. The thing is
obvious, clear and unmistakable. It should be as easy to expel an obnoxious thought from your
mind as it is to shake a stone out of your shoe; and till a man can do that it is just nonsense to talk
about his ascendancy over Nature, and all the rest of it. He is a mere slave, and prey to the
bat-winged phantoms that flit through the corridors of his own brain.

"Yet the weary and careworn faces that we meet by thousands, even among the affluent classes of
civilization, testify only too clearly how seldom this mastery is obtained. How rare indeed to meet a
man! How common rather to discover a creature hounded on by tyrant thoughts (or cares or
desires), cowering, wincing under the lash--or perchance priding himself to run merrily in
obedience to a driver that rattles the reins and persuades him that he is free--whom we cannot
converse with in careless tete-a-tete because that alien presence is always there, on the watch.

"It is one of the most prominent doctrines of Raja Yoga that the power of expelling thoughts, or if
need be, killing them dead on the spot, must be attained. Naturally the art requires practice, but
like other arts, when once acquired there is no mystery or difficulty about it. And it is worth
practice. It may indeed fairly be said that life only begins when this art has been acquired. For
obviously when instead of being ruled by individual thoughts, the whole flock of them in their
immense multitude and variety and capacity is ours to direct and dispatch and employ where we
list ('for He maketh the winds his messengers and the flaming fire His minister'), life becomes a
thing so vast and grand compared with what it was before, that its former condition may well
appear almost antenatal.

"If you can kill a thought dead, for the time being, you can do anything else with it that you please.
And therefore it is that this power is so valuable. And it not only frees a man from mental torment
(which is nine-tenths at least of the torment of life), but it gives him a concentrated power of
handling mental work absolutely unknown to him before. The two things are co-relative to each
other. As already said this is one of the principles of Raja Yoga.

"While at work your thought is to be absolutely concentrated in it, undistracted by anything
whatever irrelevant to the matter in hand--pounding away like a great engine, with giant power
and perfect economy--no wear and tear of friction, or dislocation of parts owing to the working of
different forces at the same time. Then when the work is finished, if there is no more occasion for
the use of the machine, it must stop equally, absolutely--stop entirely--no worrying (as if a parcel of
boys were allowed to play their devilments with a locomotive as soon as it was in the shed)--and
the man must retire into that region of his consciousness where his true self dwells. Page 21
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"I say the power of the thought-machine itself is enormously increased by this faculty of letting it
alone on the one hand, and of using it singly and with concentration on the other. It becomes a true
tool, which a master-workman lays down when done with, but which only a bungler carries about
with him all the time to show that he is the possessor of it."

We ask the students to read carefully the above quotations from Mr. Carpenter's book, for they are
full of suggestions that may be taken up to advantage by those who are emancipating themselves
from their slavery to the unmastered mind, and who are now bringing the mind under control of
the Ego, by means of the Will.

Our next lesson will take up the subject of the relationship of the "I" to the Universal "I," and will be
called the "Expansion of the Self." It will deal with the subject, not from a theoretical standpoint,
but from the position of the teacher who is endeavoring to make his students actually aware in
their consciousness of the truth of the proposition. In this course we are not trying to make our
students past-masters of theory, but are endeavoring to place them in a position whereby they may
know for themselves, and actually experience the things of which we teach.

Therefore we urge upon you not to merely rest content with reading this lesson, but, instead, to
study and meditate upon the teachings mentioned under the head of "Mental Drill," until the
distinctions stand out clearly in your mind, and until you not only believe them to be true, but
actually are conscious of the "I" and its Mental Tools. Have patience and perseverance. The task
may be difficult, but the reward is great. To become conscious of the greatness, majesty, strength
and power of your real being is worth years of hard study. Do you not think so? Then study and
practice hopefully, diligently and earnestly.

Peace be with you.


"I" am an entity--my mind is my instrument of expression.

"I" exist independent of my mind, and am not dependent upon it for existence or being.

"I" am Master of my mind, not its slave.

"I" can set aside my sensations, emotions, passions, desires, intellectual faculties, and all the rest of
my mental collection of tools, as "not I" things--and still there remains something--and that
something is "I," which cannot be set aside by me, for it is my very self; my only self; my real
self--"I." That which remains after all that may be set aside is set aside is the "I"--Myself--eternal,
constant, unchangeable.

[Illustration: "I am"] Page 22
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In the first two lessons of this course we have endeavored to bring to the candidate a realization in
consciousness of the reality of the "I," and to enable him to distinguish between the Self and its
sheaths, physical and mental. In the present lesson we will call his attention to the relationship of
the "I" to the Universal "I," and will endeavor to give him an idea of a greater, grander Self,
transcending personality and the little self that we are so apt to regard as the "I."

The keynote of this lesson will be "The Oneness of All," and all of its teachings will be directed to
awakening a realization in consciousness of that great truth. But we wish to impress upon the mind
of the Candidate that we are not teaching him that he is the Absolute. We are not teaching the "I
Am God" belief, which we consider to be erroneous and misleading, and a perversion of the original
Yogi teachings. This false teaching has taken possession of many of the Hindu teachers and people,
and with its accompanying teaching of "Maya" or the complete illusion or non-existence of the
Universe, has reduced millions of people to a passive, negative mental condition which
undoubtedly is retarding their progress. Not only in India is this true, but the same facts may be
observed among the pupils of the Western teachers who have embraced this negative side of the
Oriental Philosophy. Such people confound the "Absolute" and "Relative" aspects of the One, and,
being unable to reconcile the facts of Life and the Universe with their theories of "I Am God," they
are driven to the desperate expedient of boldly denying the Universe, and declaring it to be all "an
illusion" or "Maya."

You will have no trouble in distinguishing the pupils of the teachers holding this view. They will be
found to exhibit the most negative mental condition--a natural result of absorbing the constant
suggestion of "nothingness"--the gospel of negation. In marked contrast to the mental condition of
the students, however, will be observed the mental attitude of the teachers, who are almost
uniformly examples of vital, positive, mental force, capable of hurling their teaching into the minds
of the pupils--of driving in their statements by the force of an awakened Will. The teacher, as a rule,
has awakened to a sense of the "I" consciousness, and really develops the same by his "I Am God"
attitude, because by holding this mental attitude he is enabled to throw off the influence of the
sheaths of the lower mental principles, and the light of the Self shows forth fiercely and strongly,
sometimes to such an extent that it fairly scorches the mentality of the less advanced pupil. But,
notwithstanding this awakened "I" consciousness, the teacher is handicapped by his intellectual
misconception and befogging metaphysics, and is unable to impart the "I" consciousness to his
pupils, and, instead of raising them up to shine with equal splendor with himself, he really forces
them into a shadow by reason of his teachings.

Our students, of course, will understand that the above is not written in the spirit of carping
criticism or fault-finding. We hold no such mental attitude, and indeed could not if we remain true
to our conception of Truth. We are mentioning these matters simply that the student may avoid
this "I Am God" pitfall which awaits the Candidate just as he has well started on the Path. It would
not be such a serious matter if it were merely a question of faulty metaphysics, for that would
straighten itself out in time. But it is far more serious than this, for the teaching inevitably leads to
the accompanying teaching that all is Illusion or Maya, and that Life is but a dream--a false thing--a
lie--a nightmare; that the journey along the Path is but an illusion; that everything is "nothing"; that Page 23
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there is no soul; that You are God in disguise, and that He is fooling Himself in making believe that
He is You; that Life is but a Divine masquerade or sleight-of-hand performance; that You are God,
but that You (God) are fooling Yourself (God) in order to amuse Yourself (God). Is not this horrible?
And yet it shows to what lengths the human mind will go before it will part with some pet theory of
metaphysics with which it has been hypnotized. Do you think that we have overdrawn the picture?
Then read some of the teachings of these schools of the Oriental Philosophy, or listen to some of
the more radical of the Western teachers preaching this philosophy. The majority of the latter lack
the courage of the Hindu teachers in carrying their theories to a logical conclusion, and,
consequently they veil their teachings with metaphysical subtlety. But a few of them are more
courageous, and come out into the open and preach their doctrine in full.

Some of the modern Western teachers of this philosophy explain matters by saying that "God is
masquerading as different forms of life, including Man, in order that he may gain the experience
resulting therefrom, for although He has Infinite and Absolute Wisdom and Knowledge, he lacks the
experience that comes only from actually living the life of the lowly forms, and therefore He
descend thus in order to gain the needed experience." Can you imagine the Absolute, possessed of
all possible Knowledge and Wisdom, feeling the need of such petty "experience," and living the life
of the lowly forms (including Man) in order "to gain experience?" To what Depths do these vain
theories of Man drive us? Another leading Western teacher, who has absorbed the teaching of
certain branches of the Oriental Philosophy, and who possesses the courage of his convictions,
boldly announces that "You, yourself, are the totality of being, and with your mind alone create,
preserve and destroy the universe, which is your own mental product." And again the last
mentioned teacher states: "the entire universe is a bagatelle illustration of your own creative
power, which you are now exhibiting for your own inspection." "By their fruits shall you know
them," is a safe rule to apply to all teachings. The philosophy that teaches that the Universe is an
illusion perpetrated by you (God) to amuse, entertain or fool yourself (God), can have but one
result, and that is the conclusion that "everything is nothing," and all that is necessary to do is to sit
down, fold your hands and enjoy the Divine exhibition of legerdemain that you are performing for
your own entertainment, and then, when the show is over, return to your state of conscious
Godhood and recall with smiles the pleasant memories of the "conjure show" that you created to
fool yourself with during several billions of ages. That is what it amounts to, and the result is that
those accepting this philosophy thrust upon them by forceful teachers, and knowing in their hearts
that they are not God, but absorbing the suggestions of "nothingness," are driven into a state of
mental apathy and negativeness, the soul sinking into a stupor from which it may not be roused for
a long period of time.

We wish you to avoid confounding our teaching with this just mentioned. We wish to teach you
that You are a real Being--not God Himself, but a manifestation of Him who is the Absolute. You are
a Child of the Absolute, if you prefer the term, possessed of the Divine Heritage, and whose mission
it is to unfold qualities which are your inheritances from your Parent. Do not make the great
mistake of confounding the Relative with the Absolute. Avoid this pitfall into which so many have
fallen. Do not allow yourself to fall into the "Slough of Despond," and wallow in the mud of
"nothingness," and to see no reality except in the person of some forceful teacher who takes the Page 24
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place of the Absolute in your mind. But raise your head and assert your Divine Parentage, and your
Heritage from the Absolute, and step out boldly on the Path, asserting the "I."

(We must refer the Candidate back to our "Advanced Course," for our teachings regarding the
Absolute and the Relative. The last three lessons of that course will throw light upon what we have
just said To repeat the teaching at this point would be to use space which is needed for the lesson
before us.)

And yet, while the "I" is not God, the Absolute, it is infinitely greater than we have imagined it to be
before the light dawned upon us. It extends itself far beyond what we had conceived to be its
limits. It touches the Universe at all its points, and is in the closest union with all of Life. It is in the
closest touch with all that has emanated from the Absolute--all the world of Relativity. And while it
faces the Relative Universe, it has its roots in the Absolute, and draws nourishment therefrom, just
as does the babe in the womb obtain nourishment from the mother. It is verily a manifestation of
God, and God's very essence is in it. Surely this is almost as "high" a statement as the "I Am God" of
the teachers just mentioned,--and yet how different. Let us consider the teaching in detail in this
lesson, and in portions of others to follow.

Let us begin with a consideration of the instruments of the Ego, and the material with which and
through which the Ego works. Let us realize that the physical body of man is identical in substance
with all other forms of matter, and that its atoms are continually changing and being replaced, the
material being drawn from the great storehouse of matter, and that there is a Oneness of matter
underlying all apparent differences of form and substance. And then let us realize that the vital
energy or Prana that man uses in his life work is but a portion of that great universal energy which
permeates everything and everywhere, the portion being used by us at any particular moment
being drawn from the universal supply, and again passing out from us into the great ocean of force
or energy. And then let us realize that even the mind, which is so close to the real Self that it is
often mistaken for it--even that wonderful thing Thought--is but a portion of the Universal Mind,
the highest emanation of the Absolute beneath the plane of Spirit, and that the Mind--substance or
Chitta that we are using this moment, is not ours separately and distinctly, but is simply a portion
from the great universal supply, which is constant and unchangeable. Let us then realize that even
this thing that we feel pulsing within us--that which is so closely bound up with the Spirit as to be
almost inseparable from it--that which we call Life--is but a bit of that Great Life Principle that
pervades the Universe, and which cannot be added to, nor subtracted from. When we have realized
these things, and have begun to feel our relation (in these particulars) to the One Great Emanation
of the Absolute, then we may begin to grasp the idea of the Oneness of Spirit, and the relation of
the "I" to every other "I," and the merging of the Self into the one great Self, which is not the
extinction of Individuality, as some have supposed, but the enlargement and extension of the
Individual Consciousness until it takes in the Whole.

In Lessons X and XI, of the "Advanced Course" we called your attention to the Yogi teachings
concerning Akasa or Matter, and showed you that all forms of what we know as Matter are but
different forms of manifestation of the principle called Akasa, or as the Western scientists call it,
"Ether." This Ether or Akasa is the finest, thinnest and most tenuous form of Matter, in fact it is
Matter in its ultimate or fundamental form, the different forms of what we call Matter being but Page 25
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manifestations of this Akasa or Ether, the apparent difference resulting from different rates of
vibration, etc. We mention this fact here merely to bring clearly before your mind the fact of the
Universality of Matter, to the end that you may realize that each and every particle of your physical
body is but a portion of this great principle of the Universe, fresh from the great store-house, and
just about returning to it again, for the atoms of the body are constantly changing. That which
appears as your flesh to-day, may have been part of a plant a few days before, and may be part of
some other living thing a few days hence. Constant change is going on, and what is yours to-day
was someone's else yesterday, and still another's to-morrow. You do not own one atom of matter
personally, it is all a part of the common supply, the stream flowing through you and through all
Life, on and on forever.

And so it is with the Vital Energy that you are using every moment of your life. You are constantly
drawing upon the great Universal supply of Prana, then using what is given you, allowing the force
to pass on to assume some other form. It is the property of all, and all you can do is to use what you
need, and allow it to pass on. There is but one Force or Energy, and that is to be found everywhere
at all times.

And even the great principle, Mind-substance, is under the same law. It is hard for us to realize this.
We are so apt to think of our mental operations as distinctively our own--something that belongs to
us personally--that it is difficult for us to realize that Mind-substance is a Universal principle just as
Matter or Energy, and that we are but drawing upon the Universal supply in our mental operations.
And more than this, the particular portion of Mind-substance that we are using, although separated
from the Mind-substance used by other individuals by a thin wall of the very finest kind of Matter,
is really in touch with the other apparently separated minds, and with the Universal Mind of which
it forms a part. Just as is the Matter of which our physical bodies are composed really in touch with
all Matter; and just as is the Vital Force used by us really in touch with all Energy; so is our
Mind-substance really in touch with all Mind-substance. It is as if the Ego in its progress were
moving through great oceans of Matter, Energy, or Mind-substance, making use of that of each
which it needed and which immediately surrounded it, and leaving each behind as it moved on
through the great volume of the ocean. This illustration is clumsy, but it may bring to your
consciousness a realization that the Ego is the only thing that is really Yours, unchangeable and
unaltered, and that all the rest is merely that portion of the Universal supply that you draw to
yourself for the wants of the moment. It may also bring more clearly before your mind the great
Unity of things--may enable you to see things as a Whole, rather than as separated parts.
Remember, You--the "I"--are the only Real thing about and around you--all that has
permanence--and Matter, Force and even Mind-substance, are but your instruments for use and
expression. There are great oceans of each surrounding the "I" as it moves along.

It is well for you also to bear in mind the Universality of Life. All of the Universe is alive, vibrating
and pulsating with life and energy and motion. There is nothing dead in the Universe. Life is
everywhere, and always accompanied by intelligence. There is no such thing as a dead,
unintelligent Universe. Instead of being atoms of Life floating in a sea of death, we are atoms of Life
surrounded by an ocean of Life, pulsating, moving, thinking, living. Every atom of what we call
Matter is alive. It has energy or force with it, and is always accompanied by intelligence and life. Page 26
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Look around us as we will--at the animal world--at the plant world--yes, even at the world of
minerals and we see life, life, life--all alive and having intelligence. When we are able to bring this
conception into the realm of actual consciousness--when we are able not only to intellectually
accept this fact, but to even go still further and feel and be conscious of this Universal Life on all
sides, then are we well on the road to attaining the Cosmic Consciousness.

But all these things are but steps leading up to the realization of the Oneness in Spirit, on the part
of the Individual. Gradually there dawns upon him the realization that there is a Unity in the
manifestation of Spirit from the Absolute--a unity with itself, and a Union with the Absolute. All this
manifestation of Spirit on the part of the Absolute--all this begetting of Divine Children--was in the
nature of a single act rather than as a series of acts, if we may be permitted to speak of the
manifestation as an act. Each Ego is a Centre of Consciousness in this great ocean of Spirit--each is a
Real Self, apparently separate from the others and from its source, but the separation is only
apparent in both cases, for there is the closest bond of union between the Egos of the Universe of
Universes--each is knit to the other in the closest bond of union, and each is still attached to the
Absolute by spiritual filaments, if we may use the term. In time we shall grow more conscious of
this mutual relationship, as the sheaths are outgrown and cast aside, and in the end we will be
withdrawn into the Absolute--shall return to the Mansion of the Father.

It is of the highest importance to the developing soul to unfold into a realization of this relationship
and unity, for when this conception is once fully established the soul is enabled to rise above
certain of the lower planes, and is free from the operation of certain laws that bind the
undeveloped soul. Therefore the Yogi teachers are constantly leading the Candidates toward this
goal. First by this path, and then by that one, giving them different glimpses of the desired point,
until finally the student finds a path best fitted for his feet, and he moves along straight to the
mark, and throwing aside the confining bonds that have proved so irksome, he cries aloud for joy at
his new found Freedom.

The following exercises and Mental Drills are intended to aid the Candidate in his work of growing
into a realization of his relationship with the Whole of Life and Being.


(1) Read over what we have said in the "Advanced Course" regarding the principle known as
Matter. Realize that all Matter is One at the last--that the real underlying substance of Matter is
Akasa or Ether, and that all the varying forms evident to our senses are but modifications and
grosser forms of that underlying principle. Realize that by known chemical processes all forms of
Matter known to us, or rather all combinations resulting in "forms," may be resolved into their
original elements, and that these elements are merely Akasa in different states of vibration. Let the
idea of the Oneness of the visible Universe sink deeply into your mind, until it becomes fixed there.
The erroneous conception of diversity in the material world must be replaced by the consciousness
of Unity--Oneness, at the last, in spite of the appearance of variety and manifold forms. You must
grow to see behind the world of forms of Matter, and see the great principle of Matter (Akasa or
Ether) back of, within, and under it all. You must grow to feel this, as well as to intellectually see it. Page 27
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(2) Meditate over the last mentioned truths, and then follow the matter still further. Read what we
have said in the "Advanced Course" (Lesson XI) about the last analysis of Matter showing it fading
away into Force or Energy until the dividing line is lost, and Matter merges into Energy or Force,
showing them both to be but the same thing, Matter being a grosser form of Energy or Force. This
idea should be impressed upon the understanding, in order that the complete edifice of the
Knowing of the Oneness may be complete in all of its parts.

(3) Then read in the "Advanced Lessons" about Energy or Force, in the oneness underlying its
various manifestations. Consider how one form of Energy may be transformed into another, and so
on around the circle, the one principle producing the entire chain of appearances. Realize that the
energy within you by which you move and act, is but one of the forms of this great Principle of
Energy with which the Universe is filled, and that you may draw to you the required Energy from
the great Universal supply. But above all endeavor to grasp the idea of the Oneness pervading the
world of Energy or Force, or Motion. See it in its entirety, rather than in its apparent separateness.
These steps may appear somewhat tedious and useless, but take our word for it, they are all helps
in fitting the mind to grasp the idea of the Oneness of All. Each step is important, and renders the
next higher one more easily attained. In this mental drill, it will be well to mentally picture the
Universe in perpetual motion--everything is in motion--all matter is moving and changing its forms,
and manifesting the Energy within it. Suns and worlds rush through space, their particles constantly
changing and moving. Chemical composition and decomposition is constant and unceasing,
everywhere the work of building up and breaking down is going on. New combinations of atoms
and worlds are constantly being formed and dissolved. And after considering this Oneness of the
principle of Energy, reflect that through all these changes of form the Ego--the Real
Self--YOU--stand unchanged and unharmed--Eternal, Invincible, Indestructible, Invulnerable, Real
and Constant among this changing world of forms and force. You are above it all, and it revolves
around and about you--Spirit.

(4) Read what we have said in the "Advanced Course" about Force or Energy, shading into
Mind-substance which is its parent. Realize that Mind is back of all this great exhibition of Energy
and Force that you have been considering. Then will you be ready to consider the Oneness of Mind.

(5) Read what we have said in the "Advanced Lessons" about Mind-substance. Realize that there is
a great world of Mind-substance, or an Universal Mind, which is at the disposal of the Ego. All
Thought is the product of the Ego's use of this Mind-substance, its tool and instrument. Realize that
this Ocean of Mind is entire and Whole, and that the Ego may draw freely from it. Realize that You
have this great ocean of Mind at your command, when you unfold sufficiently to use it. Realize that
Mind is back of and underneath all of the world of form and names and action, and that in that
sense: "All is Mind," although still higher in the scale than even Mind are You, the Real Self, the Ego,
the Manifestation of the Absolute.

(6) Realize your identity with and relationship to All of Life. Look around you at Life in all its forms,
from the lowest to the highest, all being exhibitions of the great principle of Life in operation along
different stages of The Path. Scorn not the humblest forms, but look behind the form and see the
reality--Life. Feel yourself a part of the great Universal Life. Let your thought sink to the depths of
the ocean, and realize your kinship with the Life back of the forms dwelling there. Do not confound Page 28
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the forms (often hideous from your personal point of view) with the principle behind them. Look at
the plant-life, and the animal life, and seek to see behind the veil of form into the real Life behind
and underneath the form. Learn to feel your Life throbbing and thrilling with the Life Principle in
these other forms, and in the forms of those of your own race. Gaze into the starry skies and see
there the numerous suns and worlds, all peopled with life in some of its myriad forms, and feel your
kinship to it. If you can grasp this thought and consciousness, you will find yourself at-one-ment
with those whirling worlds, and, instead of feeling small and insignificant by comparison, you will be
conscious of an expansion of Self, until you feel that in those circling worlds is a part of
yourself--that You are there also, while standing upon the Earth--that you are akin to all parts of the
Universe--nay, more, that they are as much your home as is the spot upon which you are standing.
You will find sweeping upon you a sense of consciousness that the Universe is your home--not
merely a part of it, as you had previously thought. You will experience a sense of greatness, and
broadness and grandness such as you have never dreamed of. You will begin to realize at least a
part of your Divine inheritance, and to know indeed that you are a Child of the Infinite, the very
essence of your Divine Parent being in the fibres of your being, At such times of realization one
becomes conscious of what lies before the soul in its upward path, and how small the greatest
prizes that Earth has to offer are when compared to some of these things before the soul, as seen
by the eyes of the Spiritual Mind in moments of clear vision.

You must not dispute with these visions of the greatness of the soul, but must treat them
hospitably, for they are your very own, coming to you from the regions of your Spiritual Mind which
are unfolding into consciousness.

(7) The highest step in this dawning consciousness of the Oneness of All, is the one in which is
realized that there is but One Reality, and at the same time the sense of consciousness that the "I"
is in that Reality. It is most difficult to express this thought in words for it is something that must be
felt, rather than seen by the Intellect. When the Soul realizes that the Spirit within it is, at the last,
the only real part of it, and that the Absolute and its manifestation as Spirit is the only real thing in
the Universe, a great step has been taken. But there is still one higher step to be taken before the
full sense of the Oneness and Reality comes to us. That step is the one in which we realize the
Identity of the "I" with the great "I" of the Universe. The mystery of the manifestation of the
Absolute in the form of the Spirit, is veiled from us--the mind confesses its inability to penetrate
behind the veil shielding the Absolute from view, although it will give us a report of its being
conscious of the presence of the Absolute just at the edge of the boundary line. But the highest
region of the Spiritual Mind, when explored by the advanced souls who are well along the Path,
reports that it sees beyond the apparent separation of Spirit from Spirit, and realizes that there is
but one Reality of Spirit, and that all the "I"'s are really but different views of that One--Centres of
Consciousness upon the surface of the One Great "I," the Centre of which is the Absolute Itself. This
certainly penetrates the whole region of the Spiritual Mind, and gives us all the message of Oneness
of the Spirit, just as the Intellect satisfies us with its message of the Oneness of Matter, Energy, and
Mind. The idea of Oneness permeates all planes of Life.

The sense of Reality of the "I" that is apparent to You in the moments of your clearest mental
vision, is really the reflection of the sense of Reality underlying the Whole--it is the consciousness of Page 29
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the Whole, manifesting through your point or Centre of Consciousness. The advanced student or
Initiate finds his consciousness gradually enlarging until it realizes its identity with the Whole. He
realizes that under all the forms and names of the visible world, there is to be found One Life--One
Force--One Substance--One Existence--One Reality--ONE. And, instead of his experiencing any
sense of the loss of identity or individuality, he becomes conscious of an enlargement of an
expansion of individuality or identity--instead of feeling himself absorbed in the Whole, he feels
that he is spreading out and embracing the Whole. This is most hard to express in words, for there
are no words to fit the conception, and all that we can hope to do is to start into motion, by means
of our words, the vibrations that will find a response in the minds of those who read the words, to
the end that they will experience the consciousness which will bring its own understanding. This
consciousness cannot be transmitted by words proceeding from the Intellect, but vibrations may be
set up that will prepare the mind to receive the message from its own higher planes.

Even in the early stages of this dawning consciousness, one is enabled to identify the real part of
himself with the real part of all the other forms of life that pass before his notice. In every other
man--in every animal--in every plant--in every mineral--he sees behind the sheath and form of
appearance, an evidence of the presence of the Spirit which is akin to his own Spirit--yea, more
than akin, for the two are One. He sees Himself in all forms of life, in all time in all places. He
realizes that the Real Self is everywhere present and everlasting, and that the Life within himself is
also within all the Universe--in everything, for there is nothing dead in the Universe, and all Life, in
all of its varying phases, is simply the One Life, held, used and enjoyed in common by all. Each Ego is
a Centre of Consciousness in this great ocean of Life, and while apparently separate and distinct, is
yet really in touch with the Whole, and with every apparent part.

It is not our intention, in this lesson, to go into the details of this great mystery of Life, or to recite
the comparatively little of the Truth that the most advanced teachers and Masters have handed
down. This is not the place for it--it belongs to the subject of Gnani Yoga rather than to Raja
Yoga--and we touch upon it here, not for the purpose of trying to explain the scientific side of it to
you, but merely in order that your minds may be led to take up the idea and gradually manifest it in
conscious realization. There is quite a difference between the scientific, intellectual teaching of
Gnani Yoga, whereby the metaphysical and scientific sides of the Yogi teachings are presented to
the minds of the students, in a logical, scientific manner, and the methods of Raja Yoga, in which
the Candidate is led by degrees to a consciousness (outside of mere intellectual belief) of his real
nature and powers. We are following the latter plan, for this course is a Course in Raja Yoga. We are
aiming to present the matter to the mind in such a manner that it may prepare the way for the
dawning consciousness, by brushing away the preconceived notions and prejudices, and allowing a
clean entrance for the new conception. Much that we have said in this lesson may appear, on the
one hand, like useless repetition, and, on the other hand, like an incomplete presentation of the
scientific side of the Yogi teachings. But it will be found, in time, that the effect has been that the
mind of the student has undergone a change from the absorbing of the idea of the Oneness of Life,
and the Expansion of the Self. The Candidate is urged not to be in too much of a hurry.
Development must not be forced. Read what we have written, and practice the Mental Drills we
have given, even if they may appear trifling and childish to some of you--we know what they will do
for you, and you will agree with us in time. Make haste slowly. You will find that the mind will work Page 30
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out the matter, even though you be engaged in your ordinary work, and have forgotten the subject
for the time. The greater portion of mental work is done in this way, while you are busy with
something else, or even asleep, for the sub-conscious portion of the mind works along the lines
pointed out for it, and performs its task.

As we have said, the purpose of this lesson is to bring you in the way of the unfoldment of
consciousness, rather than to teach you the details of the scientific side of the Yogi teachings.
Development is the keynote of Raja Yoga. And the reason that we wish to develop this sense of the
Reality of the "I," and the Expansion of the Self, at this place is that thereby you may assert your
Mastery over Matter, Energy and Mind. Before you may mount your throne as King, you must fully
realize in consciousness that you are the Reality in this world of appearances. You must realize that
you--the real You--are not only existent, and real, but that you are in touch with all else that is real,
and that the roots of your being are grounded in the Absolute itself. You must realize that instead
of being a separate atom of Reality, isolated and fixed in a narrow space, you are a Centre of
Consciousness in the Whole of Reality, and that the Universe of Universes is your home--that your
Centre of Consciousness might be moved on to a point trillions of miles from the Earth (which
distance would be as nothing in Space) and still you--the awakened soul--would be just as much at
home there as here--that even while you are here, your influence extends far out into space. Your
real state, which will be revealed to you, gradually, throughout the ages, is so great and grand, that
your mind in its present state of development cannot grasp even the faint reflection of that glory.

We wish you to try to form at least a faint idea of your Real State of Being, in order that you may
control the lower principles by the force of your awakened Will, which Will depends upon your
degree of consciousness of the Real Self.

As man grows in understanding and consciousness of the Real Self, so does his ability to use his Will
grow. Will is the attribute of the Real Self. It is well that this great realization of the Real Self brings
with it Love for all of Life, and Kindness, for, were it not so, the Will that comes to him who grows
into a realization of his real being could be used to the great hurt of those of the race who had not
progressed so far (their relative hurt, we mean, for in the end, and at the last, no soul is ever really
hurt). But the dawning power brings with it greater Love and Kindness, and the higher the soul
mounts the more is it filled with the higher ideals and the more does it throw from it the lower
animal attributes. It is true that some souls growing into a consciousness of their real nature,
without an understanding of what it all means, may commit the error of using the awakened Will
for selfish ends, as may be seen in the cases of the Black Magicians spoken of in the occult writings,
and also in the cases of well known characters in history and in modern life, who manifest an
enormous Will which they misuse. All of this class of people of great Will have stumbled or grown
blindly into a consciousness (or partial consciousness) of the real nature, but lack the restraining
influence of the higher teachings. But such misuse of the Will brings pain and unrest to the user,
and he is eventually driven into the right road.

We do not expect our students to grasp fully this idea of the Expansion of Self. Even the highest
grasp it only partially. But until you get a glimmering of the consciousness you will not be able to
progress far on the path of Raja Yoga. You must understand what you are, before you are able to
use the power that lies dormant within you. You must realize that you are the Master, before you Page 31
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can claim the powers of the Master, and expect to have your commands obeyed. So bear patiently
with us, your Teachers, while we set before you the lessons to be learned--the tasks to be
performed. The road is long, and is rough in places--the feet may become tired and bruised, but the
reward is great, and there are resting places along the path. Be not discouraged if your progress
seem slow, for the soul must unfold naturally as does the flower, without haste, without force.

And be not dismayed nor affrighted if you occasionally catch a glimpse of your higher self. As
"M.C." says, in her notes on "Light on the Path" (see "Advanced Course," page 95): "To have seen
thy soul in its bloom, is to have obtained a momentary glimpse in thyself of the transfiguration
which shall eventually make thee more than man; to recognize, is to achieve the great task of
gazing upon the blazing light without dropping the eyes, and not falling back in terror as though
before some ghastly phantom. This happens to some, and so, when the victory is all but won, it is

Peace be with thee.


There is but one ultimate form of Matter; one ultimate form of Energy; one ultimate form of Mind.
Matter proceeds from Energy, and Energy from Mind, and all are an emanation of the Absolute,
threefold in appearance but One in substance. There is but One Life, and that permeates the
Universe, manifesting in various forms, but being, at the last, but One. My body is one with
Universal Matter; My energy and vital force is one with the Universal Energy; My Mind is one with
the Universal Mind; My Life is one with the Universal Life. The Absolute has expressed and
manifested itself in Spirit, which is the real "I" overshadowing and embracing all the apparently
separate "I"s. "I" feel my identity with Spirit and realize the Oneness of All Reality. I feel my unity
with all Spirit, and my Union (through Spirit) with the Absolute. I realize that

"I" am an Expression and Manifestation of the Absolute, and that its very essence is within me. I am
filled with Divine Love. I am filled with Divine Power. I am filled with Divine Wisdom. I am conscious
of identity in spirit, in substance; and in nature; with the One Reality. Page 32
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In our first three lessons of this series, we have endeavored to bring into realization within your
mind (1) the consciousness of the "I"; its independence from the body; its immortality; its
invincibility and invulnerability; (2) the superiority of the "I" over the mind, as well as over the
body; the fact that the mind is not the "I," but is merely an instrument for the expression of the "I";
the fact that the "I" is master of the mind, as well as of the body; that the "I" is behind all thought;
that the "I" can set aside for consideration the sensations, emotions, passions, desires, and the rest
of the mental phenomena, and still realize that it, the "I," is apart from these mental
manifestations, and remains unchanged, real and fully existent; that the "I" can set aside any and all
of its mental tools and instruments, as "not I" things, and still consciously realize that after so
setting them aside there remains something--itself--the "I" which cannot be set aside or taken
from; that the "I" is the master of the mind, and not its slave; (3) that the "I" is a much greater thing
than the little personal "I" we have been considering it to be; that the "I" is a part of that great One
Reality which pervades all the Universe; that it is connected with all other forms of life by countless
ties, mental and spiritual filaments and relations; that the "I" is a Centre of Consciousness in that
great One Reality or Spirit, which is behind and back of all Life and Existence, the Centre of which
Reality or Existence, is the Absolute or God; that the sense of Reality that is inherent in the "I," is
really the reflection of the sense of Reality inherent in the Whole--the Great "I" of the Universe.

The underlying principle of these three lessons is the Reality of the "I," in itself, over and above all
Matter, Force, or Mind--positive to all of them, just as they are positive or negative to each
other--and negative only to the Centre of the One--the Absolute itself. And this is the position for
the Candidate or Initiate to take: "I am positive to Mind, Energy, and Matter, and control them all--I
am negative only to the Absolute, which is the Centre of Being, of which Being I Am. And, as I assert
my mastery over Mind, Energy, and Matter, and exercise my Will over them, so do I acknowledge
my subordination to the Absolute, and gladly open my soul to the inflow of the Divine Will, and
partake of its Power, Strength, and Wisdom."

In the present lesson, and those immediately following it, we shall endeavor to assist the Candidate
or Initiate in acquiring a mastery of the subordinate manifestations, Matter, Energy, and Mind. In
order to acquire and assert this mastery, one must acquaint himself with the nature of the thing to
be controlled.

In our "Advanced Course" we have endeavored to explain to you the nature of the Three Great
Manifestations, known as Chitta, or Mind-Substance; Prana, or Energy; and Akasa, or the Principle
of Matter. We also explained to you that the "I" of man is superior to these three, being what is
known as Atman or Spirit. Matter, Energy, and Mind, as we have explained, are manifestations of
the Absolute, and are relative things. The Yogi philosophy teaches that Matter is the grossest form
of manifested substance, being below Energy and Mind, and consequently negative to, and
subordinate to both. One stage higher than Matter, is Energy or Force, which is positive to, and has
authority over, Matter (Matter being a still grosser form of substance), but which is negative to and
subordinate to Mind, which is a still higher form of substance. Next in order comes the highest of
the three--Mind--the finest form of substance, and which dominates both Energy and Matter, being
positive to both. Mind, however is negative and subordinate to the "I," which is Spirit, and obeys Page 33
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the orders of the latter when firmly and intelligently given. The "I" itself is subordinate only to the
Absolute--the Centre of Being--the "I" being positive and dominant over the threefold
manifestation of Mind, Energy, and Matter.

The "I," which for the sake of the illustration must be regarded as a separate thing (although it is
really only a Centre of Consciousness in the great body of Spirit), finds itself surrounded by the
triple-ocean of Mind, Energy and Matter, which ocean extends into Infinity. The body is but a
physical form through which flows an unending stream of matter, for, as you know the particles
and atoms of the body are constantly changing; being renewed; replaced; thrown off, and
supplanted. One's body of a few years ago, or rather the particles composing that body, have
passed off and now form new combinations in the world of matter. And one's body of to-day is
passing away and being replaced by new particles. And one's body of next year is now occupying
some other portion of space, and its particles are now parts of countless other combinations, from
which space and combinations they will later come to combine and form the body of next year.
There is nothing permanent about the body--even the particles of the bones are being constantly
replaced by others. And so it is with the Vital Energy, Force, or Strength of the body (including that
of the brain). It is constantly being used up, and expended, a fresh supply taking its place. And even
the Mind of the person is changeable, and the Mind-substance or Chitta, is being used up and
replenished, the new supply coming from the great Ocean of Mind, into which the discarded
portion slips, just as is the case with the matter and energy.

While the majority of our students, who are more or less familiar with the current material
scientific conceptions, will readily accept the above idea of the ocean of Matter, and Energy, and
the fact that there is a continual using up and replenishing of one's store of both, they may have
more or less trouble in accepting the idea that Mind is a substance or principle amenable to the
same general laws as are the other two manifestations, or attributes of substance. One is so apt to
think of his Mind as "himself"--the "I." Notwithstanding the fact that in our Second Lesson of this
series we showed you that the "I" is superior to the mental states, and that it can set them aside
and regard and consider them as "not-I" things, yet the force of the habit of thought is very strong,
and it may take some of you considerable time before you "get into the way" of realizing that your
Mind is "something that you use," instead of being You--yourself. And yet, you must persevere in
attaining this realization, for in the degree that you realize your dominance over your mind, so will
be your control of it, and its amenability to that control. And, as is the degree of that dominance
and control, so will be the character, grade and extent of the work that your Mind will do for you.
So you see: Realization brings Control--and Control brings results. This statement lies at the base of
the science of Raja Yoga. And many of its first exercises are designed to acquaint the student with
that realization, and to develop the realization and control by habit and practice.

The Yogi Philosophy teaches that instead of Mind being the "I." it is the thing through and by means
of which the "I" thinks, at least so far as is concerned the knowledge concerning the phenomenal or
outward Universe--that is the Universe of Name and Form. There is a higher Knowledge locked up
in the innermost part of the "I," that far transcends any information that it may receive about or
from the outer world, but that is not before us for consideration at this time, and we must concern
ourselves with the "thinking" about the world of things. Page 34
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Mind-substance in Sanscrit is called "Chitta," and a wave in the Chitta (which wave is the
combination of Mind and Energy) is called "Vritta," which is akin to what we call a "thought." In
other words it is "mind in action," whereas Chitta is "mind in repose." Vritta, when literally
translated means "a whirlpool or eddy in the mind," which is exactly what a thought really is.

But we must call the attention of the student, at this point, to the fact that the word "Mind" is used
in two ways by the Yogis and other occultists, and the student is directed to form a clear conception
of each meaning, in order to avoid confusion, and that he may more clearly perceive the two
aspects of the things which the word is intended to express. In the first place the word "Mind" is
used as synonymous with Chitta, or Mind-substance, which is the Universal Mind Principle. From
this Chitta, Mind-substance, or Mind, all the material of the millions of personal minds is obtained.
The second meaning of the word "Mind" is that which we mean when we speak of the "mind" of
anyone, thereby meaning the mental faculties of that particular person--that which distinguishes
his mental personality from that of another. We have taught you that this "mind" in Man, functions
on three planes, and have called the respective manifestations (1) the Instinctive Mind; (2) the
Intellect; and (3) the Spiritual Mind. (See "Fourteen Lessons in Yogi Philosophy," etc.) These three
mental planes, taken together, make up the "mind" of the person, or to be more exact they,
clustered around the "I" form the "soul" of the individual. The word "soul" is often used as
synonymous with "spirit" but those who have followed us will distinguish the difference. The "soul"
is the Ego surrounded by its mental principles, while the Spirit is the "soul of the soul"--the "I," or
Real Self.

The Science of Raja Yoga, to which this series of lessons is devoted, teaches, as its basic principle,
the Control of the Mind. It holds that the first step toward Power consists in obtaining a control of
one's own mind. It holds that the internal world must be conquered before the outer world is
attacked. It holds that the "I" manifests itself in Will, and that that Will may be used to manipulate,
guide, govern and direct the mind of its owner, as well as the physical world. It aims to clear away
all mental rubbish, and encumbrances--to conduct a "mental house-cleaning," as it were, and to
secure a clear, clean, healthy mind. Then it proceeds to control that mind intelligently, and with
effect, saving all waste-power, and by means of concentration bringing the Mind in full harmony
with the Will, that it may be brought to a focus and its power greatly increased and its efficiency
fully secured. Concentration and Will-power are the means by which the Yogis obtain such
wonderful results, and by which they manage and direct their vigorous, healthy minds, and master
the material world, acting positively upon Energy and Matter. This control extends to all planes of
the Mind and the Yogis not only control the Instinctive Mind, holding in subjection its lower
qualities and making use of its other parts, but they also develop and enlarge the field of their
Intellect and obtain from it wonderful results. Even the Spiritual Mind is mastered, and aided in its
unfoldment, and urged to pass down into the field of consciousness some of the wonderful secrets
to be found within its area. By means of Raja Yoga many of the secrets of existence and
Being--many of the Riddles of the Universe--are answered and solved. And by it the latent powers
inherent in the constitution of Man are unfolded and brought into action. Those highly advanced in
the science are believed to have obtained such a wonderful degree of power and control over the
forces of the universe, that they are as gods compared with the ordinary man. Page 35
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Raja Yoga teaches that not only may power of this kind be secured, but that a wonderful field of
Knowledge is opened out through its practice. It holds that when the concentrated mind is focused
upon thing or subject, the true nature and inner meaning, of, and concerning, that thing or subject
will be brought to view. The concentrated mind passes through the object or subject just as the
X-Ray passes through a block of wood, and the thing is seen by the "I" as it is--in truth--and not as it
had appeared before, imperfectly and erroneously. Not only may the outside world be thus
explored, but the mental ray may be turned inward, and the secret places of the mind explored.
When it is remembered that the bit of mind that each man possesses, is like a drop of the ocean
which contains within its tiny compass all the elements that make up the ocean, and that to know
perfectly the drop is to know perfectly the ocean, then we begin to see what such a power really

Many in the Western world who have attained great results in the intellectual and scientific fields
of endeavor, have developed these powers more or less unconsciously. Many great inventors are
practical Yogis, although they do not realize the source of their power. Anyone who is familiar with
the personal mental characteristics of Edison, will see that he follows some of the Raja Yoga
methods, and that Concentration is one of his strongest weapons. And from all reports, Prof. Elmer
Gates, of Washington, D.C., whose mind has unfolded many wonderful discoveries and inventions,
is also a practical Yogi although he may repudiate the assertion vigorously, and may not have
familiarized himself with the principles of this science, which he has "dropped into" unconsciously.
Those who have reported upon Prof. Gates' methods, say that he fairly "digs out" the inventions
and discoveries from his mind, after going into seclusion and practicing concentration, and what is
known as the Mental Vision.

But we have given you enough of theory for one lesson, and must begin to give you directions
whereby you may aid yourself in developing these latent powers and unfolding these dormant
energies. You will notice that in this series we first tell you something about the theory, and then
proceed to give you "something to do." This is the true Yogi method as followed and practiced by
their best teachers. Too much theory is tiresome, and sings the mind to sleep, while too much
exercise tires one, and does not give the inquiring part of his mind the necessary food. To combine
both in suitable proportions is the better plan, and one that we aim to follow.


Before we can get the mind to do good work for us, we must first "tame" it, and bring it to
obedience to the Will of the "I." The mind, as a rule, has been allowed to run wild, and follow its
own sweet will and desires, without regard to anything else. Like a spoiled child or badly trained
domestic animal, it gets into much trouble, and is of very little pleasure, comfort or use. The minds
of many of us are like menageries of wild animals, each pursuing the bent of its own nature, and
going its own way. We have the whole menagerie within us--the tiger, the ape, the peacock, the
ass, the goose, the sheep the hyena, and all the rest. And we have been letting these animals rule
us. Even our Intellect is erratic, unstable, and like the quicksilver to which the ancient

occultists compared it, shifting and uncertain. If you will look around you you will see that those
men and women in the world who have really accomplished anything worth while have trained Page 36
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their minds to obedience. They have asserted the Will over their own minds, and learned Mastery
and Power in that way. The average mind chafes at the restraint of the Will, and is like a frisky
monkey that will not be "taught tricks." But taught it must be, if it wants to do good work. And
teach it you must if you expect to get any use from it--if you expect to use it, instead of having it
use you.

And this is the first thing to be learned in Raja Yoga--this control of the mind. Those who had hoped
for some royal road to mastery, may be disappointed, but there is only one way and that is to
master and control the mind by the Will. Otherwise it will run away when you most need it. And so
we shall give you some exercise designed to aid you in this direction.

The first exercise in Raja Yoga Is what is called Pratyahara or the art of making the mind
introspective or turned inward upon itself. It is the first step toward mental control. It aims to turn
the mind from going outward, and gradually turning it inward upon itself or inner nature. The
object is to gain control of it by the Will. The following exercises will aid in that direction:


(a) Place yourself in a comfortable position, and so far as possible free from outside disturbing
influences. Make no violent effort to control the mind, but rather allow it to run along for a while
and exhaust its efforts. It will take advantage of the opportunity, and will jump around like an
unchained monkey at first, until it gradually slows down and looks to you for orders. It may take
some time to tame down at first trial, but each time you try it will come around to you in shorter
time. The Yogis spend much time in acquiring this mental peace and calm, and consider themselves
well paid for it.

(b) When the mind is well calmed down, and peaceful, fix the thought on the "I Am," as taught in
our previous lessons. Picture the "I" as an entity independent of the body; deathless; invulnerable;
immortal; real. Then think of it as independent of the body, and able to exist without its fleshly
covering. Meditate upon this for a time, and then gradually direct the thought to the realization of
the "I" as independent and superior to the mind, and controlling same. Go over the general ideas of
the first two lessons, and endeavor to calmly reflect upon them and to see them in the "mind's
eye." You will find that your mind is gradually becoming more and more peaceful and calm, and
that the distracting thoughts of the outside world are farther and farther removed from you.

(c) Then let the mind pass on to a calm consideration of the Third Lesson, in which we have spoken
of the Oneness of All, and the relationship of the "I" to the One Life; Power; Intelligence; Being. You
will find that you are acquiring a mental control and calm heretofore unknown to you. The
exercises in the first three lessons will have prepared you for this.

(d) The following is the most difficult of the variations or degrees of this exercise, but the ability to
perform it will come gradually. The exercise consists in gradually shutting out all thought or
impression of the outside world; of the body; and of the thoughts themselves, the student
concentrating and meditating upon the word and idea "I AM," the idea being that he shall
concentrate upon the idea of mere "being" or "existence," symbolized by the words "I Am." Not "I
am this," or "I am that," or "I do this," or "I think that," but simply: "I AM." This exercise will focus Page 37
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the attention at the very centre of Being within oneself, and will gather in all the mental energies,
instead of allowing them to be scattered upon outside things. A feeling of Peace, Strength, and
Power will result, for the affirmation, and the thought back of it, is the most powerful and strongest
that one may make, for it is a statement of Actual Being, and a turning of the thought inward to
that truth. Let the mind first dwell upon the word "I," identifying it with the Self, and then let it pass
on to the word "AM," which signifies Reality, and Being. Then combine the two with the meanings
thereof, and the result a most powerful focusing of thought inward, and most potent Statement of

It is well to accompany the above exercises with a comfortable and easy physical attitude, so as to
prevent the distraction of the attention by the body. In order to do this one should assume an easy
attitude and then relax every muscle, and take the tension from every nerve, until a perfect sense
of ease, comfort and relaxation is obtained. You should practice this until you have fully acquired it.
It will be useful to you in many ways, besides rendering Concentration and Meditation easier. It will
act as a "rest cure" for tired body, nerves, and mind.


The second step in Raja Yoga is what is known as Dharana, or Concentration. This is a most
wonderful idea in the direction of focusing the mental forces, and may be cultivated to an almost
incredible degree, but all this requires work, time, and patience. But the student will be well repaid
for it. Concentration consists in the mind focusing upon a certain subject, or object, and being held
there for a time. This, at first thought seems very easy, but a little practice will show how difficult it
is to firmly fix the attention and hold it there. It will have a tendency to waver, and move to some
other object or subject, and much practice will be needed in order to hold it at the desired point.
But practice will accomplish wonders, as one may see by observing people who have acquired this
faculty, and who use it in their everyday life. But the following point should be remembered. Many
persons have acquired the faculty of concentrating their attention, but have allowed it to become
almost involuntary, and they become a slave to it, forgetting themselves and everything else, and
often neglecting necessary affairs. This is the ignorant way of concentrating, and those addicted to
it become slaves to their habits, instead of masters of their minds. They become day-dreamers, and
absent-minded people, instead of Masters. They are to be pitied as much as those who cannot
concentrate at all. The secret is in a mastery of the mind. The Yogis can concentrate at will, and
completely bury themselves in the subject before them, and extract from it every item of interest,
and can then pass the mind from the thing at will, the same control being used in both cases. They
do not allow fits of abstraction, or "absent-mindedness" to come upon them, nor are they
day-dreamers. On the contrary they are very wide awake individuals; close observers; clear
thinkers; correct reasoners. They are masters of their minds, not slaves to their moods. The
ignorant concentrator buries himself in the object or subject, and allows it to master and absorb
himself, while the trained Yogi thinker asserts the "I," and then directs his mind to concentrate
upon the subject or object, keeping it well under control and in view all the time. Do you see the
difference? Then heed the lesson.

The following exercises may be found useful in the first steps of Concentration: Page 38
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(a) Concentrate the attention upon some familiar object--a pencil, for instance. Hold the mind there
and consider the pencil to the exclusion of any other object. Consider its size; color; shape; kind of
wood. Consider its uses, and purposes; its materials; the process of its manufacture, etc., etc., etc.
In short think as many things about the pencil as possible allowing the mind to pursue any
associated by-paths, such as a consideration of the graphite of which the "lead" is made; the forest
from which came the wood used in making the pencil; the history of pencils, and other implements
used for writing, etc. In short exhaust the subject of "Pencils." In considering a subject under
concentration, the following plan of synopsis will be found useful. Think of the thing in question
from the following view-points:

(1) The thing itself.

(2) The place from whence it came.

(3) Its purpose or use.

(4) Its associations.

(5) Its probable end.

Do not let the apparently trivial nature of the inquiry discourage you, for the simplest form of
mental training is useful, and will help to develop your Will and Concentration. It is akin to the
process of developing a physical muscle by some simple exercise, and in both cases one loses sight
of the unimportance of the exercise itself, in view of the end to be gained.

(b) Concentrate the attention upon some part of the body--the hand for instance, and fixing your
entire attention upon it, shut off or inhibit all sensation from the other parts of the body. A little
practice will enable you to do this. In addition to the mental training, this exercise will stimulate the
part of the body concentrated upon, for reasons that will appear in future lessons. Change the parts
of the body concentrated upon, and thus give the mind a variety of exercises, and the body the
effect of a general stimulation.

(c) These exercises may be extended indefinitely upon familiar objects about you. Remember
always, that the thing in itself is of no importance, the whole idea being to train the mind to obey
the Will, so that when you really wish to use the mental forces upon some important object, you
may find them well trained and obedient. Do not be tempted to slight this part of the work because
it is "dry" and uninteresting, for it leads up to things that are most interesting, and opens a door to
a fascinating subject.

(d) Practice focusing the attention upon some abstract subject--that is upon some subject of
interest that may offer a field for mental exploration. Think about the subject in all its phases and
branches, following up one by-path, and then another, until you feel that you know all about the
subject that your mind has acquired. You will be surprised to find how much more you know about
any one thing or subject than you had believed possible. In hidden corners of your mind you will
find some useful or interesting information about the thing in question, and when you are through Page 39
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you will feel well posted upon it, and upon the things connected with it. This exercise will not only
help, to develop your intellectual powers, but will strengthen your memory, and broaden your
mind, and give you more confidence in yourself. And, in addition, you will have taken a valuable
exercise in Concentration or Dharana.

The Importance of Concentration.

Concentration is a focusing of the mind. And this focusing of the mind requires a focusing, or
bringing to a center, of the Will. The mind is concentrated because the Will is focused upon the
object. The mind flows into the mould made by the Will. The above exercises are designed not only
to accustom the mind to the obedience and direction of the Will, but also tend to accustom the Will
to command. We speak of strengthening the Will, when what we really mean is training the mind
to obey, and accustoming the Will to command. Our Will is strong enough, but we do not realize it.
The Will takes root in the very center of our being--in the "I," but our imperfectly developed mind
does not recognize this tact. We are like young elephants that do not recognize their own strength,
but allow themselves to be mastered by puny drivers, whom they could brush aside with a
movement. The Will is back of all action--all doing--mental and physical.

We shall have much to say touching the Will, in these lessons and the student should give the
matter his careful attention. Let him look around him, and he will see that the great difference
between the men who have stepped forward from the ranks, and those who remain huddled up in
the crowd, consists in Determination and Will. As Buxton has well said: "The longer I live, the more
certain I am that the great difference between men, the feeble and the powerful; the great and the
insignificant; is Energy and Invincible Determination." And he might have added that the thing
behind that "energy and invincible determination" was Will.

The writers and thinkers of all ages have recognized the wonderful and transcendent importance of
the Will. Tennyson sings: "O living Will thou shalt endure when all that seems shall suffer shock."
Oliver Wendell Holmes says: "The seat of the Will seems to vary with the organ through which it is
manifested; to transport itself to different parts of the brain, as we may wish to recall a picture, a
phrase, a melody; to throw its force on the muscles or the intellectual processes. Like the
general-in-chief, its place is everywhere in the field of action. It is the least like an instrument of any
of our faculties; the farthest removed from our conceptions of mechanism and matter, as we
commonly define them." Holmes was correct in his idea, but faulty in his details. The Will does not
change its seat, which is always in the center of the Ego, but the Will forces the mind to all parts,
and in all directions, and it directs the Prana or vital force likewise. The Will is indeed the
general-in-chief, but it does not rush to the various points of action, but sends its messengers and
couriers there to carry out its orders. Buxton has said: "The Will will do anything that can be done in
this world. And no talents, no circumstances, no opportunities will make a two-legged creature a
Man without it." Ik Marvel truly says: "Resolve is what makes a man manifest; not puny resolve, not
crude determinations, not errant purpose--but that strong and indefatigable Will which treads
down difficulties and danger, as a boy treads down the heaving frost-lands of winter; which kindles
his eye and brain with a proud pulse-beat toward the unattainable. Will makes men giants." Page 40
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The great obstacle to the proper use of the Will, in the case of the majority of people, is the lack of
ability to focus the attention. The Yogis clearly understand this point, and many of the Raja Yoga
exercises which are given to the students by the teachers, are designed to overcome this difficulty.
Attention is the outward evidence of the Will. As a French writer has said: "The attention is subject
to the superior authority of the Ego. I yield it, or I withhold it, as I please. I direct it in turn to several
points. I concentrate it upon each point as long as my Will can stand the effort." Prof. James has
said: "The essential achievement of the Will, when it is most voluntary, is to attend to a difficult
object, and hold it fast before the mind. Effort of Attention is the essential phenomenon of the
Will." And Prof. Halleck says: "The first step toward the development of Will lies in the exercise of
Attention. Ideas grow in distinctness and motor-power as we attend to them. If we take two ideas
of the same intensity and center the attention upon one, we shall notice how much it grows in
power." Prof. Sully says: "Attention may be roughly defined as the active self-direction of the mind
to any object which presents itself at the moment." The word "Attention" is derived from two Latin
words, ad tendere, meaning "to stretch towards," and this is just what the Yogis know it to be. By
means of their psychic or clairvoyant sight, they see the thought of the attentive person stretched
out toward the object attended to, like a sharp wedge, the point of which is focused upon the
object under consideration, the entire force of the thought being concentrated at that point. This is
true not only when the person is considering an object, but when he is earnestly impressing his
ideas upon another, or upon some task to be accomplished. Attention means reaching the mind out
to and focusing it upon something.

The trained Will exhibits itself in a tenacious Attention, and this Attention is one of the signs of the
trained Will. The student must not hastily conclude that this kind of Attention is a common faculty
among men. On the contrary it is quite rare, and is seen only among those of "strong" mentality.
Anyone may fasten his Attention upon some passing, pleasing thing, but it takes a trained will to
fasten it upon some unattractive thing, and hold it there. Of course the trained occultist is able to
throw interest into the most unattractive thing upon which it becomes advisable to focus his
Attention, but this, in itself, comes with the trained Will, and is not the possession of the average
man. Voluntary Attention is rare, and is found only among strong characters. But it may be
cultivated and grown, until he who has scarcely a shade of it to-day, in time may become a giant. It
is all a matter of practice, exercise, and Will.

It is difficult to say too much in favor of the development of the faculty of tenacious Attention. One
possessing this developed faculty is able to accomplish far more than even a much "brighter" man
who lacks it. And the best way to train the Attention, under the direction of the Will, is to practice
upon uninteresting objects, and ideas, holding them before the mind until they begin to assume an
Interest. This is difficult at first, but the task soon begins to take on a pleasant aspect, for one finds
that his Will-power and Attention are growing, and he feels himself acquiring a Force and Power
that were lacking before--he realizes that he is growing Stronger. Charles Dickens said that the
secret of his success consisted in his developing a faculty of throwing his entire Attention into
whatever he happened to be doing at the moment and then being able to turn that same degree of
Attention to the next thing coming before him for consideration. He was like a man behind a great
searchlight, which was successively turned upon point after point, illuminating each in turn. The "I"
is the man behind the light, and the Will is the reflector, the light being the Attention. Page 41
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This discussion of Will and Attention may seem somewhat "dry" to the student, but that is all the
more reason that he should attend to it. It is the secret that lies at the basis of the Science of Raja
Yoga, and the Yogi Masters have attained a degree of Concentrated Will and Attention that would
be inconceivable to the average "man on the street." By reason of this, they are able to direct the
mind here and there, outward or inward, with an enormous force. They are able to focus the mind
upon a small thing with remarkable intensity, just as the rays of the sun may be focused through a
"sun-glass" and caused to ignite linen, or, on the other hand, they are able to send forth the mind
with intense energy, illuminating whatever it rests upon, just as happens in the case of the strong
electric searchlight, with which many of us are familiar. By all means start in to cultivate the
Attention and Will. Practice on the unpleasant tasks--do the things that you have before you, and
from which you have been shrinking because they were unpleasant. Throw interest into them, and
the difficulty will vanish, and you will come out of it much stronger, and filled with a new sense of


"I" have a Will--it is my inalienable property and right. I determine to cultivate and develop it by
practice and exercise. My mind is obedient to my Will. I assert my Will over my Mind. I am Master
of my mind and body. I assert my Mastery. My Will is Dynamic--full of Force and Energy, and Power.
I feel my strength. I am Strong. I am Forceful. I am Vital. I am Center of Consciousness, Energy,
Strength, and Power, and I claim my birthright. Page 42
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In our last lesson we called your attention to the fact that the Yogis devote considerable time and
practice to the acquirement of Concentration. And we also had something to say regarding the
relation of Attention to the subject of Concentration. In this lesson we shall have more to say on
the subject of Attention, for it is one of the important things relating to the practice of Raja Yoga,
and the Yogis insist upon their students practicing systematically to develop and cultivate the
faculty. Attention lies at the base of Will-power, and the cultivation of one makes easy the exercise
of the other.

To explain why we lay so much importance to the cultivation of Attention, would necessitate our
anticipating future lessons of this series, which we do not deem advisable at this time. And so we
must ask our students to take our word for it, that all that we have to say regarding the importance
of the cultivation of Attention, is occasioned by the relation of that subject to the use of the mind in
certain directions as will appear fully later on.

In order to let you know that we are not advancing some peculiar theory of the Yogis, which may
not be in harmony with modern Western Science, we give you in this article a number of
quotations, from Western writers and thinkers, touching upon this important faculty of the mind,
so that you may see that the West and East agree upon this main point, however different may be
their explanations of the fact, or their use of the power gained by the cultivation of Attention.

As we said in our last lesson, the word Attention is derived from two Latin words "ad tendere,"
meaning "to stretch toward," which is really what Attention is. The "I" wills that the mind be
focused on some particular object or thing, and the mind obeys and "stretches toward" that object
or thing, focusing its entire energy upon it, observing every detail, dissecting, analyzing, consciously
and sub-consciously, drawing to itself every possible bit of information regarding it, both from
within and from without. We cannot lay too much stress upon the acquirement of this great
faculty, or rather, the development of it, for it is necessary for the intelligent study of Raja Yoga.

In order to bring out the importance of the subject, suppose we start in by actually giving our
Attention to the subject of Attention, and see how much more there is in it than we had thought.
We shall be well repaid for the amount of time and trouble expended upon it.

Attention has been defined as a focusing of consciousness, or, if one prefers the form of expression,
as "detention in consciousness." In the first case, we may liken it to the action of the sun-glass
through which the sun's rays are concentrated upon an object, the result being that the heat is
gathered together at a small given point, the intensity of the same being raised many degrees until
the heat is sufficient to burn a piece of wood, or evaporate water. If the rays were not focused, the
same rays and heat would have been scattered over a large surface, and the effect and power
lessened. And so it is with the mind. If it is allowed to scatter itself over the entire field of a subject,
it will exert but little power and the results will be weak. But if it is passed through the sun-glass of
attention, and focused first over one part, and then over another, and so on, the matter may be
mastered in detail, and a result accomplished that will seem little less than marvelous to those who
do not know the secret. Page 43
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Thompson has said: "The experiences most permanently impressed upon consciousness, are those
upon which the greatest amount of attention has been fixed."

Another writer upon the subject has said that "Attention is so essentially necessary to
understanding, that without some degree of it the ideas and perceptions that pass through the
mind seem to leave no trace behind them."

Hamilton has said: "An act of attention, that is, an act of concentration, seems thus necessary to
every exertion of consciousness, as a certain contraction of the pupil is requisite to every exertion
of vision. Attention then is to consciousness what the contraction of the pupil is to sight, or, to the
eye of the mind what the microscope or telescope is to the bodily eye. It constitutes the better half
of all intellectual power."

And Brodie adds, quite forcibly: "It is Attention much more than any difference in the abstract
power of reasoning, which constitutes the vast difference which exists between minds of different

Butler gives us this important testimony: "The most important intellectual habit I know of is the
habit of attending exclusively to the matter in hand. It is commonly said that genius cannot be
infused by education, yet this power of concentrated attention, which belongs as a part of his gift
to every great discoverer, is unquestionably capable of almost indefinite augmentation by resolute

And, concluding this review of opinions, and endorsements of that which the Yogis have so much to
say, and to which they attach so much importance, let us listen to the words of Beattie, who says:
"The force wherewith anything strikes the mind, is generally in proportion to the degree of
attention bestowed upon it. Moreover, the great art of memory is attention, and inattentive people
always have bad memories."

There are two general kinds of Attention. The first is the Attention directed within the mind upon
mental objects and concepts. The other is the Attention directed outward upon objects external to
ourselves. The same general rules and laws apply to both equally.

Likewise there may be drawn another distinction and division of attention into two classes, viz.,
Attenion attracted by some impression coming into consciousness without any conscious effort of
the Will--this is called Involuntary Attention, for the Attention and Interest is caught by the
attractiveness or novelty of the object. Attention directed to some object by an effort of the Will, is
called Voluntary Attention. Involuntary Attention is quite common, and requires no special training.
In fact, the lower animals, and young children seem to have a greater share of it than do adult men.
A great percentage of men and women never get beyond this stage to any marked degree. On the
other hand, Voluntary Attention requires effort, will, and determination--a certain mental training,
that is beyond the majority of people, for they will not "take the trouble" to direct their attention in
this way. Voluntary Attention is the mark of the student and other thoughtful men. They focus their
minds on objects that do not yield immediate interest or pleasure, in order that they may learn and
accomplish. The careless person will not thus fasten his Attention, at least not more than a moment
or so, for his Involuntary Attention is soon attracted by some passing object of no matter how Page 44
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trifling a nature, and the Voluntary Attention disappears and is forgotten. Voluntary Attention is
developed by practice and perseverance, and is well worth the trouble, for nothing in the mental
world is accomplished without its use.

The Attention does not readily fasten itself to uninteresting objects, and, unless interest can be
created it requires a considerable degree of Voluntary Attention in order that the mind may be
fastened upon such an object. And, more than this, even if the ordinary attention is attracted it will
soon waver, unless there is some interesting change in the aspect of the object, that will give the
attention a fresh hold of interest, or unless some new quality, characteristic or property manifests
itself in the object. This fact occurs because the mind mechanism has not been trained to bear
prolonged Voluntary Attention, and, in fact, the physical brain is not accustomed to the task,
although it may be so trained by patient practice.

It has been noticed by investigators that the Attention may be rested and freshened, either by
withdrawing the Voluntary Attention from the object, and allowing the Attention to manifest along
Involuntary lines toward passing objects, etc.; or, on the other hand, by directing the Voluntary
Attention into a new field of observation--toward some new object. Sometimes one plan will seem
to give the best results, and again the other will seem preferable.

We have called your attention to the fact that Interest develops Attention, and holds it fixed, while
an uninteresting object or subject requires a much greater effort and application. This fact is
apparent to anyone. A common illustration may be found in the matter of reading a book. Nearly
everyone will give his undivided attention to some bright, thrilling story, while but few are able to
use sufficient Voluntary Attention to master the pages of some scientific work. But, right here, we
wish to call your attention to the other side of the case, which is another example of the fact that
Truth is composed of paradoxes.

Just as Interest develops Attention, so it is a truth that Attention develops Interest. If one will take
the trouble to give a little Voluntary Attention to an object, he will soon find that a little
perseverance will bring to light points of Interest in the object. Things before unseen and
unsuspected, are quickly brought to light. And many new phases, and aspects of the subject or
object are seen, each one of which, in turn, becomes an object of Interest. This is a fact not so
generally known, and one that it will be well for you to remember, and to use in practice. Look for
the interesting features of an uninteresting thing, and they will appear to your view, and before
long the uninteresting object will have changed into a thing having many-sided interests.

Voluntary Attention is one of the signs of a developed Will. That is, of a mind that has been well
trained by the Will, for the Will is always strong, and it is the mind that has to be trained, not the
Will. And on the other hand, one of the best ways to train the mind by the Will, is by practice in
Voluntary Attention. So you see how the rule works both ways. Some Western psychologists have
even advanced theories that the Voluntary Attention is the only power of the Will, and that that
power is sufficient, for if the Attention be firmly fixed, and held upon an object the mind will "do
the rest." We do not agree with this school of philosophers, but merely mention the fact as an
illustration of the importance attributed by psychologists to this matter of Voluntary Attention. Page 45
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A man of a strongly developed Attention often accomplishes far more than some much brighter
man who lacks it. Voluntary Attention and Application is a very good substitute for Genius, and
often accomplishes far more in the long run.

Voluntary Attention is the fixing of the mind earnestly and intently upon some particular object, at
the same time shutting out from consciousness other objects pressing for entrance. Hamilton has
defined it as "consciousness voluntarily applied under its law of limitations to some determinate
object." The same writer goes on to state that "the greater the number of objects to which our
consciousness is simultaneously extended, the smaller is the intensity with which it is able to
consider each, and consequently the less vivid and distinct will be the information it contains of the
several objects. When our interest in any particular object is excited, and when we wish to obtain
all the knowledge concerning it in our power, it behooves us to limit our consideration to that
object to the exclusion of others."

The human mind has the power of attending to only one object at a time, although it is able to pass
from one object to another with a marvelous degree of speed, so rapidly, in fact, that some have
held that it could grasp several things at once. But the best authorities, Eastern and Western, hold
to the "single idea" theory as being correct. On this point we may quote a few authorities.

Jouffroy says that "It is established by experience that we cannot give our attention to two different
objects at the same time." And Holland states that "Two thoughts, however closely related to one
another, cannot be presumed to exist at the same time." And Lewes has told us that "The nature of
our organism prevents our having more than one aspect of an object at each instant presented to
consciousness." Whateley says: "The best philosophers are agreed that the mind cannot actually
attend to more than one thing at a time, but, when it appears to be doing so it is really shifting with
prodigious rapidity backward and forward from one to the other."

By giving a concentrated Voluntary Attention to an object, we not only are able to see and think
about it with the greatest possible degree of clearness, but the mind has a tendency, under such
circumstances, to bring into the field of consciousness all the different ideas associated in our
memory with that object or subject, and to build around the object or subject a mass of associated
facts and information. And at the same time the Attention given the subject makes more vivid and
clear all that we learn about the thing at the time, and, in fact, all that we may afterwards learn
about it. It seems to cut a channel, through which knowledge flows.

Attention magnifies and increases the powers of perception, and greatly aids the exercise of the
perceptive faculties. By "paying attention" to something seen or heard, one is enabled to observe
the details of the thing seen or heard, and where the inattentive mind acquires say three
impressions the attentive mind absorbs three times three, or perhaps three times "three times
three," or twenty-seven. And, as we have just said, Attention brings into play the powers of
association, and gives us the "loose end" of an almost infinite chain of associated facts, stored away
in our memory, forming new combinations of facts which we had never grouped together before,
and bring out into the field of consciousness all the many scraps of information regarding the thing
to which we are giving attention. The proof of this is within the experience of everyone. Page 46
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Where is the one who does not remember sitting down to some writing, painting, reading, etc.,
with interest and attention, and finding, much to his surprise, what a flow of facts regarding the
matter in hand was passing through his mind. Attention seems to focus all the knowledge of a thing
that you possess, and by bringing it to a point enables you to combine, associate, classify, etc., and
thus create new knowledge. Gibbon tells us that after he gave a brief glance and consideration to a
new subject, he suspended further work upon it, and allowed his mind (under concentrated
attention) to bring forth all his associated knowledge regarding the subject, after which he renewed
the task with increased power and efficiency.

The more one's attention is fixed upon a subject under consideration, the deeper is the impression
which the subject leaves upon the mind. And the easier will it be for him to afterwards pursue the
same train of thought and work.

Attention is a prerequisite of good memory, and in fact there can be no memory at all unless some
degree of attention is given. The degree of memory depends upon the degree of attention and
interest. And when it is considered that the work of today is made efficient by the memory of
things learned yesterday, the day before yesterday, and so on, it is seen that the degree of
attention given today regulates the quality of the work of tomorrow.

Some authorities have described Genius as the result of great powers of attention, or, at least, that
the two seem to run together. Some writer has said that "possibly the best definition of genius is
the power of concentrating upon some one given subject until its possibilities are exhausted and
absorbed." Simpson has said that "The power and habit of thinking closely and continuously upon
the subject at hand, to the exclusion, for the time, of all other subjects, is one of the principal, if,
indeed, not the principal, means of success." Sir Isaac Newton has told us his plan of absorbing
information and knowledge. He has stated that he would keep the subject under consideration
before him continually, and then would wait till the first dawning of perception gradually
brightened into a clear light, little by little. A mental sunrise, in fact.

That sage observer, Dr. Abercrombie, has written that he considered that he knew of no more
important rule for rising to eminence in any profession or occupation than the Ability to do one
thing at a time, avoiding all distracting and diverting objects or subjects, and keeping the leading
matter continually before the mind. And others have added that such a course will enable one to
observe relations between the subject and other things that will not be apparent to the careless
observer or student.

The degree of Attention cultivated by a man is the degree of his capacity for intellectual work. As
we have said, the "great" men of all walks of life have developed this faculty to a wonderful degree,
and many of them seem to get results "intuitively," whereas, in truth, they obtain them by reason
of their concentrated power of Attention, which enables them to see right into the center of a
subject or proposition--and all around it, back and front, and all sides, in a space of time incredible
to the man who has not cultivated this mighty power. Men who have devoted much attention to
some special line of work or research, are able to act almost as if they possessed "second sight,"
providing the subject is within their favorite field of endeavor. Attention quickens every one of the Page 47
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faculties--the reasoning faculties--the senses--the deriding qualities--the analytical faculties, and so
on, each being given a "fine edge" by their use under a concentrated Attention.

And, on the other hand, there is no surer indication of a weak mind than the deficiency in
Attention. This weakness may arise from illness or physical weakness reacting upon the brain, in
which case the trouble is but temporary. Or it may arise from a lack of mental development.
Imbeciles and idiots have little or no Attention. The great French psychologist, Luys, speaking of this
fact, says "Imbeciles and idiots see badly, hear badly, feel badly, and their sensorium is, in
consequence, in a similar condition of sensitive poverty. Its impressionability for the things of the
external world is at a minimum, its sensibility weak, and consequently, it is difficult to provoke the
physiological condition necessary for the absorption of the external impression."

In old age the Attention is the first faculty to show signs of decay. Some authorities have held that
the Memory was the first faculty to be affected by the approach of old age, but this is incorrect, for
it is a matter of common experience that the aged manifest a wonderfully clear memory of events
occurring in the far past. The reason that their memory of recent events is so poor is because their
failing powers of Attention has prevented them from receiving strong, clear mental impressions,
and as is the impression so is the memory. Their early impressions having been clear and strong,
are easily recalled, while their later ones, being weak, are recalled with difficulty. If the Memory
were at fault, it would be difficult for them to recall any impression, recent or far distant in time.

But we must stop quoting examples and authorities, and urging upon you the importance of the
faculty of Attention. If you do not now realize it, it is because you have not given the subject the
Attention that you should have exercised, and further repetition would not remedy matters.

Admitting the importance of Attention, from the psychological point of view, not to speak of the
occult side of the subject, is it not a matter of importance for you to start in to cultivate that
faculty? We think so. And the only way to cultivate any mental or physical part or faculty is to
Exercise it. Exercise "uses up" a muscle, or mental faculty, but the organism makes haste to rush to
the scene additional material--cell-stuff, nerve force, etc., to repair the waste, and it always sends a
little more than is needed. And this "little more," continually accruing and increasing, is what
increases the muscles and brain centers. And improved and strengthened brain centers give the
mind better instruments with which to work.

One of the first things to do in the cultivation of Attention is to learn to think of, and do, one thing
at a time. Acquiring the "knack" or habit of attending closely to the things before us, and then
passing on to the next and treating it in the same way, is most conducive to success, and its practice
is the best exercise for the cultivation of the faculty of Attention. And on the contrary, there is
nothing more harmful from the point of view of successful performance--and nothing that will do
more to destroy the power of giving Attention--than the habit of trying to do one thing while
thinking of another. The thinking part of the mind, and the acting part should work together, not in

Dr. Beattie, speaking of this subject, tells us "It is a matter of no small importance that we acquire
the habit of doing only one thing at a time; by which I mean that while attending to any one object, Page 48
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our thoughts ought not to wander to another." And Granville adds, "A frequent cause of failure in
the faculty of Attention is striving to think of more than one thing at a time." And Kay quotes,
approvingly, a writer who says: "She did things easily, because she attended to them in the doing.
When she made bread, she thought of the bread, and not of the fashion of her next dress, or of her
partner at the last dance." Lord Chesterfield said, "There is time enough for everything in the
course of the day, if you do but one thing at a time; but there is not time enough in the year if you
try to do two things at a time."

To attain the best results one should practice concentrating upon the task before him, shutting out,
so far as possible, every other idea or thought. One should even forget self--personality--in such
cases, as there is nothing more destructive of good thinking than to allow morbid
self-consciousness to intrude. One does best when he "forgets himself" in his work, and sinks his
personality in the creative work. The "earnest" man or woman is the one who sinks personality in
the desired result, or performance of the task undertaken. The actor, or preacher, or orator, or
writer, must lose sight of himself to get the best results. Keep the Attention fixed on the thing
before you, and let the self take care of itself.

In connection with the above, we may relate an anecdote of Whateley that may be interesting in
connection with the consideration of this subject of "losing one's self" in the task. He was asked for
a recipe for "bashfulness," and replied that the person was bashful simply because he was thinking
of himself and the impression he was making. His recipe was that the young man should think of
others--of the pleasure he could give them--and in that way he would forget all about himself. The
prescription is said to have effected the cure. The same authority has written, "Let both the
extemporary speaker, and the reader of his own compositions, study to avoid as far as possible all
thoughts of self, earnestly fixing the mind on the matter of what is delivered; and they will feel less
that embarrassment which arises from the thought of what opinion the hearers will form of them."

The same writer, Whateley, seems to have made quite a study of Attention and has given us some
interesting information on its details. The following may be read with interest, and if properly
understood may be employed to advantage. He says, "It is a fact, and a very curious one. that many
people find that they can best attend to any serious matter when they are occupied with something
else which requires a little, and but a little, attention, such as working with the needle, cutting open
paper leaves, or, for want of some such employment, fiddling anyhow with the fingers." He does
not give the reason for this, and at first sight it might seem like a contradiction of the "one thing at
a time" idea. But a closer examination will show us that the minor work (the cutting leaves, etc.) is
in the nature of an involuntary or automatic movement, inasmuch as it requires little or no
voluntary attention, and seems to "do itself." It does not take off the Attention from the main
subject, but perhaps acts to catch the "waste Attention" that often tries to divide the Attention
from some voluntary act to another. The habit mind may be doing one thing, while the Attention is
fixed on another. For instance, one may be writing with his attention firmly fixed upon the thought
he wishes to express, while at the time his hand is doing the writing, apparently with no attention
being given it. But, let a boy, or person unaccustomed to writing, try to express his thoughts in this
way, and you will find that he is hampered in the flow of his thoughts by the fact that he has to give
much attention to the mechanical act of writing. In the same way, the beginner on the typewriter Page 49
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finds it difficult to compose to the machine, while the experienced typist finds the mechanical
movements no hindrance whatever to the flow of thought and focusing of Attention; in fact, many
find that they can compose much better while using the typewriter than they can by dictating to a
stenographer. We think you will see the principle.

And now for a little Mental Drill in Attention, that you may be started on the road to cultivate this
important faculty.


Exercise I. Begin by taking some familiar object and placing it before you, try to get as many
impressions regarding it as is possible for you. Study its shape, its color, its size, and the thousand
and one little peculiarities about it that present themselves to your attention. In doing this, reduce
the thing to its simplest parts--analyze it as far as is possible--dissect it, mentally, and study its parts
in detail. The more simple and small the part to be considered, the more clearly will the impression
be received, and the more vividly will it be recalled. Reduce the thing to the smallest possible
proportions, and then examine each portion, and mastering that, then pass on to the next part, and
so on, until you have covered the entire field. Then, when you have exhausted the object, take a
pencil and paper and put down as nearly as possible all the things or details of the object examined.
When you have done this, compare the written description with the object itself, and see how
many things you have failed to note.

The next day take up the same object, and after re-examining it, write down the details and you will
find that you will have stored away a greater number of impressions regarding it, and, moreover,
you will have discovered many new details during your second examination. This exercise
strengthens the memory as well as the Attention, for the two are closely connected, the memory
depending largely upon the clearness and strength of the impressions received, while the
impressions depend upon the amount of attention given to the thing observed. Do not tire yourself
with this exercise, for a tired Attention is a poor Attention. Better try it by degrees, increasing the
task a little each time you try it. Make a game of it if you like, and you will find it quite interesting to
notice the steady but gradual improvement.

It will be interesting to practice this in connection with some friend, varying the exercise by both
examining the object, and writing down their impressions, separately, and then comparing results.
This adds interest to the task, and you will be surprised to see how rapidly both of you increase in
your powers of observation, which powers, of course, result from Attention.

Exercise II. This exercise is but a variation of the first one. It consists in entering a room, and taking
a hasty glance around, and then walking out, and afterward writing down the number of things that
you have observed, with a description of each. You will be surprised to observe how many things
you have missed at first sight, and how you will improve in observation by a little practice. This
exercise, also, may be improved by the assistance of a friend, as related in our last exercise. It is
astonishing how many details one may observe and remember, after a little practice. It is related of
Houdin, the French conjurer, that he improved and developed his faculty of Attention and Memory
by playing this game with a young relative. They would pass by a shop window, taking a hasty, Page 50
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attentive glance at its contents. Then they would go around the corner and compare notes. At first
they could remember only a few prominent articles--that is, their Attention could grasp only a few.
But as they developed by practice, they found that they could observe and remember a vast
number of things and objects in the window. And, at last, it is related that Houdin could pass rapidly
before any large shop window, bestowing upon it but one hasty glance, and then tell the names of,
and closely describe, nearly every object in plain sight in the window. The feat was accomplished by
the fact that the cultivated Attention enabled Houdin to fasten upon his mind a vivid mental image
of the window and its contents, and then he was able to describe the articles one by one from the
picture in his mind.

Houdin taught his son to develop Attention by a simple exercise which may be interesting and of
value to you. He would lay down a domino before the boy--a five-four, for example. He would
require the boy to tell him the combined number at once, without allowing him to stop to count
the spots, one by one. "Nine" the boy would answer after a moment's hesitation. Then another
domino, a three-four, would be added. "That makes sixteen," cried the boy. Two dominoes at a
time was the second day's task. The next day, three was the standard. The next day, four, and so
on, until the boy was able to handle twelve dominoes--that is to say, give instantaneously the total
number of spots on twelve dominoes, after a single glance. This was Attention, in earnest, and
shows what practice will do to develop a faculty. The result was shown by the wonderful powers of
observation, memory and attention, together with instantaneous mental action, that the boy
developed. Not only was he able to add dominoes instantaneously, but he had powers of
observation, etc., that seemed little short of miraculous. And yet it is related that he had poor
attention, and deficient memory to begin with.

If this seems incredible, let us remember how old whist players note and remember every card in
the pack, and can tell whether they have been played or not, and all the circumstances attending
upon them. The same is true of chess players, who observe every move and can relate the whole
game in detail long after it has been played. And remember, also, how one woman may pass
another woman on the street, and without seeming to give her more than a careless glance, may
be able to relate in detail every feature of the other woman's apparel, including its color, texture,
style of fashioning, probable price of the material, etc., etc. And a mere man would have noticed
scarcely anything about it--because he would not have given it any attention. But how soon would
that man learn to equal his sister in attention and observation of women's wearing apparel, if his
business success depended upon it, or if his speculative instinct was called into play by a wager with
some friend as to who could remember the most about a woman's clothing, seen in a passing
glance? You see it is all a matter of Interest and Attention.

But we forget that the Attention may be developed and cultivated, and we complain that we
"cannot remember things," or that we do not seem to be able to "take notice." A little practice will
do wonders in this direction.

Now, while the above exercises will develop your memory and powers of observation, still that is
not the main reason that we have given them to you. We have an ulterior object, that will appear in
time. We aim to develop your Will-power, and we know that Attention stands at the gate of
Will-power. In order to be able to use your Will, you must be able to focus the Attention forcibly Page 51
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and distinctly. And these childish exercises will help you to develop the mental muscles of the
Attention. If you could but realize the childish games the young Yogi students are required to play,
in order to develop the mental faculties, you would change your minds about the Yogi Adepts
whom you have been thinking about as mere dreamers, far removed from the practical. These
men, and their students, are intensely practical. They have gained the mastery of the Mind, and its
faculties, and are able to use them as sharp edged tools, while the untrained man finds that he has
but a dull, unsharpened blade that will do nothing but hack and hew roughly, instead of being able
to produce the finished product.

The Yogi believes in giving the "I" good tools with which to work, and he spends much time in
tempering and sharpening these tools. Oh, no, the Yogi are not idle dreamers. Their grasp of
"practical things" would surprise many a practical, matter-of-fact Western business man, if he could
but observe it.

And so, we ask you to practice "observing things." The two exercises we have given are but
indications of the general line. We could give you thousands, but you can prepare them yourselves
as well as could we. The little Hindu boy is taught Attention by being asked to note and remember
the number, color, character and other details of a number of colored stones, jewelry, etc., shown
for an instant in an open palm, the hand being closed the moment after. He is taught to note and
describe passing travelers, and their equipages--houses he sees on his journeys--and thousands of
other everyday objects. The results are almost marvelous. In this way he is prepared as a chela or
student, and he brings to his guru or teacher a brain well developed--a mind thoroughly trained to
obey the Will of the "I"--and with faculties quickened to perceive instantly that which others would
fail to see in a fortnight. It is true that he does not turn these faculties to "business" or other
so-called "practical" pursuits, but prefers to devote them to abstract studies and pursuits outside of
that which the Western man considers to be the end and aim of life. But remember that the two
civilizations are quite different--following different ideals--having different economic
conditions--living in different worlds, as it were. But that is all a matter of taste and ideals--the
faculty for the "practical life" of the West is possessed by the chela, if he saw fit to use it. But all
Hindu youths are not chelas, remember--nor are all Western youths "captains of industry," or


I am using my Attention to develop my mental faculties, so as to give the "I" a perfect instrument
with which to work. The mind is My instrument and I am bringing it to a state of capacity for perfect


There is but One Life--One Life Underlying. This Life is manifesting through ME, and through every
other shape, form, and thing. I am resting on the bosom of the Great Ocean of Life, and it is
supporting me, and will carry me safely, though the waves rise and fall--though the storms rage and
the tempests roar. I am safe on the Ocean of Life, and rejoice as I feel the sway of its motion.
Nothing can harm me--though changes may come and go, I am Safe. I am One with the All Life, and Page 52
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its Power, Knowledge, and Peace are behind, underneath, and within Me. O! One Life! express
Thyself through me--carry me now on the crest of the wave, now deep down in the trough of the
ocean--supported always by Thee--all is good to me, as I feel Thy life moving in and through me. I
am Alive, through thy life, and I open myself to thy full manifestation and inflow. Page 53
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Man gains his knowledge of the outside world through his senses. And, consequently, many of us
are in the habit of thinking of these senses as if they did the sensing, instead of being merely
carriers of the vibrations coming from the outside world, which are then presented to the Mind for
examination. We shall speak of this at greater length a little later on in this lesson. Just now we
wish to impress upon you the fact that it is the Mind that perceives, not the senses. And,
consequently, a development of Perception is really a development of the Mind.

The Yogis put their students through a very arduous course of practice and exercises designed to
develop their powers of perception. To many this would appear to be merely a development of the
Senses, which might appear odd in view of the fact that the Yogis are constantly preaching the folly
of being governed and ruled by the senses. But there is nothing paradoxical about all this, for the
Yogis, while preaching the folly of sense life, and manifesting the teaching in their lives,
nevertheless believe in any and all exercises calculated to "sharpen" the Mind, and develop it to a
keen state and condition.

They see a great difference between having a sharpened perception, on the one hand, and being a
slave to the senses on the other. For instance, what would be thought of a man who objected to
acquiring a keen eyesight, for fear it would lead him away from higher things, by reason of his
becoming attached to the beautiful things he might see. To realize the folly of this idea, one may
look at its logical conclusion, which would be that one would then be much better off if all their
senses were destroyed. The absurdity, not to say wickedness, of such an idea will be apparent to
everyone, after a minute's consideration.

The secret of the Yogi theory and teachings regarding the development of the Mental powers, lies
in the word "Mastery." The Yoga student accomplishes and attains this mastery in two ways. The
first way is by subordinating all the feelings, sense-impressions, etc., to the Mastery of the "I," or
Will, the Mastery being obtained in this way by the assertion of the dominancy of the "I" over the
faculties and emotions, etc. The second step, or way, lies in the Yogi, once having asserted the
mastery, beginning to develop and perfect the Mental instrument, so as to get better work and
returns from it. In this way he increases his kingdom and is Master over a much larger territory.

In order for one to gain knowledge, it is necessary to use to the best advantage the mental
instruments and tools that he finds at his disposal. And again, one must develop and improve such
tools--put a keen edge upon them, etc. Not only does one gain a great benefit from a
development of the faculties of perception, but he also acquires an additional benefit from the
training of the whole mind arising from the mental discipline and training resulting from the former
exercises, etc. In our previous lessons we have pointed out some of the means by which these
faculties might be greatly improved, and their efficiency increased. In this lesson we shall point out
certain directions in which the Perceptive faculties may be trained. We trust that the simplicity of
the idea may not cause any of our students to lose interest in the work. If they only knew just what
such development would lead to they would gladly follow our suggestions in the matter. Every one
of the ideas and exercises given by us are intended to lead up to the strengthening of the Mind, and Page 54
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the attainment of powers and the unfoldment of faculties. There is no royal road to Raja Yoga, but
the student will be well repaid for the work of climbing the hill of Attainment.

In view of the above, let us examine the question of The Senses. Through the doors of the senses
Man receives all his information regarding the outside world. If he keeps these doors but half open,
or crowded up with obstacles and rubbish, he may expect to receive but few messages from
outside. But if he keeps his doorways clear, and clean, he will obtain the best that is passing his

If one were born without sense-organs--no matter how good a Mind he might have--he would be
compelled to live his life in a dreamy plant-life stage of existence, with little or no consciousness.
The Mind would be like a seed in the earth, that for some reason was prevented from growing.

One may object that the highest ideas do not come to us through the senses, but the reply is that
the things obtained through the senses are the "raw material" upon which the mind works, and
fashions the beautiful things that it is able to produce in its highest stages. Just as is the body
dependent for growth upon the nourishment taken into it, so is the mind dependent for growth
upon the impressions received from the Universe--and these impressions come largely through the
senses. It may be objected to that we know many things that we have not received through our
senses. But, does the objector include the impressions that came through his senses in some
previous existence, and which have been impressed upon his instinctive mind, or soul-memory? It
is true that there are higher senses than those usually recognized, but Nature insists upon one
learning the lessons of the lower grades before attempting those of the higher.

Do not forget that all that we know we have "worked for." There is nothing that comes to the idler,
or shirker. What we know is merely the result of "stored-up accumulations of previous experience,"
as Lewes has so well said.

So it will be seen that the Yogi idea that one should develop all parts of the Mind is strictly correct,
if one will take the trouble to examine into the matter. A man sees and knows but very little of
what is going on about him. His limitations are great. His powers of vision report only a few
vibrations of light, while below and above the scale lie an infinity of vibrations unknown to him. The
same is true of the powers of hearing, for only a comparatively small portion of the sound-waves
reach the Mind of Man--even some of the animals hear more than he does.

If a man had only one sense he would obtain but a one-sense idea of the outside world. If another
sense is added his knowledge is doubled. And so on. The best proof of the relation between
increased sense perception and development is had in the study of the evolution of animal forms.
In the early stages of life the organism has only the sense of feeling--and very dim at that--and a
faint sense of taste. Then developed smell, hearing and sight, each marking a distinct advance in
the scale of life, for a new world has been opened out to the advancing forms of life. And, when
man develops new senses--and this is before the race--he will be a much wiser and greater being.

Carpenter, many years ago, voiced a thought that will be familiar to those who are acquainted with
the Yogi teachings regarding the unfoldment of new senses. He said: "It does not seem at all
improbable that there are properties of matter of which none of our senses can take immediate Page 55
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cognizance, and which other beings might be formed to perceive in the same manner as we are
sensible to light, sound, etc."

And Isaac Taylor said: "It may be that within the field observed by the visible and ponderable
universe there is existing and moving another element fraught with another species of
life--corporeal, indeed, and various in its orders, but not open to cognizance of those who are
confined to the conditions of animal organization. Is it to be thought that the eye of man is the
measure of the Creator's power?--and that He created nothing but that which he has exposed to
our present senses? The contrary seems much more than barely possible; ought we not to think it
almost certain?"

Another writer. Prof. Masson, has said: "If a new sense or two were added to the present normal
number, in man, that which is now the phenomenal world for all of us might, for all that we know,
burst into something amazingly different and wider, in consequence of the additional revelations of
these new senses."

But not only is this true, but Man may increase his powers of knowledge and experience if he will
but develop the senses he has to a higher degree of efficiency, instead of allowing them to remain
comparatively atrophied. And toward this end, this lesson is written.

The Mind obtains its impressions of objects of the outside world by means of the brain and sense
organs. The sensory organs are the instruments of the Mind, as is also the brain and the entire
nervous system. By means of the nerves, and the brain, the Mind makes use of the sensory organs
in order that it may obtain information regarding external objects.

The senses are usually said to consist of five different forms, viz., sight, hearing, smell, touch, and

The Yogis teach that there are higher senses, undeveloped, or comparatively so, in the majority of
the race, but toward the unfoldment of which the race is tending. But we shall not touch upon
these latent senses in this lesson, as they belong to another phase of the subject. In addition to the
five senses above enumerated, some physiologists and psychologists have held that there were
several others in evidence. For instance, the sense by which the inner organs revealed their
presence and condition, The muscular system reports to the mind through some sense that is not
that of "touch," although closely allied to it. And the feelings of hunger, thirst, etc., seem to come
to us through an unnamed sense.

Bernstein has distinguished between the five senses and the one just referred to as follows: "The
characteristic distinction between these common sensations and the sensations of the senses is
that by the latter we gain knowledge of the occurrences and objects which belong to the external
world (and which sensations we refer to external objects), whilst by the former we only feel
conditions of our own body."

A sensation is the internal, mental conception, resulting from an external object or fact exciting the
sense organs and nerves, and the brain, thus making the mind "aware" of the external object or Page 56
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fact. As Bain has said, it is the "mental impression, feeling, or conscious state, resulting from the
action of external things on some part of the body, called on that account, sensitive."

Each channel of sense impressions has an organ, or organs, peculiarly adapted for the excitation of
its substance by the particular kind of vibrations through which it receives impressions. The eye is
most cunningly and carefully designed to receive the light-waves; and sound-waves produce no
effect upon it. And, likewise, the delicate mechanism of the ear responds only to sound-waves;
light-waves failing to register upon it. Each set of sensations is entirely different, and the organs
and nerves designed to register each particular set are peculiarly adapted to their own special
work. The organs of sense, including their special nervous systems, may be compared to a delicate
instrument that the mind has fashioned for itself, that it may investigate, examine and obtain
reports from the outside world.

We have become so accustomed to the workings of the senses that we take them as a "matter of
course," and fail to recognize them as the delicate and wonderful instruments that they
are--designed and perfected by the mind for its own use. If we will think of the soul as designing,
manufacturing and using these instruments, we may begin to understand their true relations to our
lives, and, accordingly treat them with more respect and consideration.

We are in the habit of thinking that we are aware of all the sensations received by our mind. But
this is very far from being correct. The unconscious regions of the mind are incomparably larger
than the small conscious area that we generally think of when we say "my mind." In future lessons
we shall proceed to consider this wonderful area, and examine what is to be found there. Taine has
well said, "There is going on within us a subterranean process of infinite extent; its products alone
are known to us, and are only known to us in the mass. As to elements, and their elements,
consciousness does not attain to them. They are to sensations what secondary molecules and
primitive molecules are to bodies. We get a glance here and there at obscure and infinite worlds
extending beneath our distinct sensations. These are compounds and wholes. For their elements to
be perceptible to consciousness, it is necessary for them to be added together, and so to acquire a
certain bulk and to occupy a certain time, for if the group does not attain this bulk, and does not
last this time, we observe no changes in our state. Nevertheless, though it escapes us, there is one."

But we must postpone our consideration of this more than interesting phase of the subject, until
some future lesson, when we shall take a trip into the regions of Mind, under and above
Consciousness. And a most wonderful trip many of us will find it, too.

For the present, we must pay our attention to the channels by which the material for knowledge
and thought enter our minds. For these sense impressions, coming to us from without, are indeed
"material" upon which the mind works in order to manufacture the product called "Thought."

This material we obtain through the channels of the senses, and then store in that wonderful
storehouse, the Memory, from whence we bring out material from time to time, which we proceed
to weave into the fabric of Thought. The skill of the worker depends upon his training, and his
ability to select and combine the proper materials. And the acquiring of good materials to be stored
up is an important part of the work. Page 57
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A mind without stored-up material of impressions and experiences would be like a factory without
material. The machinery would have nothing upon which to work, and the shop would be idle. As
Helmholtz has said, "Apprehension by the senses supplies directly or indirectly, the material of all
human knowledge, or at least the stimulus necessary to develop every inborn faculty of the mind."
And Herbert Spencer, has this to say of this phase of the subject, "It is almost a truism to say that in
proportion to the numerousness of the objects that can be distinguished, and in proportion to the
variety of coexistences and sequences that can be severally responded to, must be the number and
rapidity and variety of the changes within the organism--must be the amount of vitality."

A little reflection upon this subject will show us that the greater degree of exercise and training
given the senses, the greater the degree of mental power and capability. As we store our mental
storehouse with the materials to be manufactured into thought, so is the quality and quantity of
the fabric produced.

It therefore behooves us to awaken from our "lazy" condition of mind, and to proceed to develop
our organs of sense, and their attendant mechanism, as by doing so we increase our capacity for
thought and knowledge.

Before passing to the exercises, however, it may be well to give a hasty passing glance at the
several senses, and their peculiarities.

The sense of Touch is the simplest and primal sense. Long before the lower forms of life had
developed the higher senses, they had evidenced the sense of Touch or Feeling. Without this sense
they would have been unable to have found their food, or to receive and respond to outside
impressions. In the early forms of life it was exercised equally by all parts of the body, although in
the higher forms this sense has become somewhat localized, as certain parts of the body are far
more sensitive than are others. The skin is the seat of the sense of Touch, and its nerves are
distributed over the entire area of the skin. The hand, and particularly the fingers, and their tips,
are the principal organs of this sense.

The acuteness of Touch varies materially in different parts of the body. Experiments have shown
that a pair of compasses would register impressions as a very slight distance apart when applied to
the tip of the tongue. The distance at which the two points could be distinguished from one point,
on the tip of the tongue, was called "one line." Using this "line" as a standard, it was found that the
palmar surface of the third finger registered 2 lines; the surface of the lips 4 lines, and the skin of
the back, and on the middle of the arm or thigh, as high as 60 lines The degree of sensitiveness to
Touch varies greatly with different individuals, some having a very fine sense of touch in their
fingers, while others manifested a very much lower degree.

In the same way, there is a great difference in the response of the fingers to weight--a great
difference in the ability to distinguish the difference of the weight of objects. It has been found that
some people can distinguish differences in weight down to very small fractions of an ounce. Fine
distinctions in the differences in temperature have also been noticed.

The sense of touch, and its development has meant much for Man. It is the one sense in which Man
surpasses the animals in the matter of degree and acuteness. The animal may have a keener smell, Page 58
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taste, hearing and sight, but its sense of Touch is far beneath that of Man. Anaxagoras is quoted as
saying that "if the animals had hands and fingers, they would be like men."

In developing the sense of Touch, the student must remember that Attention is the key to success.
The greater the amount of Attention the greater the degree of development possible in the case of
any sense. When the Attention is concentrated upon any particular sense, the latter becomes
quickened and more acute, and repeated exercise, under the stimulus of Attention, will work
wonders in the case of any particular sense. And on the other hand, the sense of touch may be
almost, or completely inhibited, by firmly fixing the Attention upon something else. As an extreme
proof of this latter fact, the student is asked to remember the fact that men have been known to
suffer excruciating torture, apparently without feeling, owing to the mind being intently riveted
upon some idea or thought. As Wyld has said, "The martyr borne above sensuous impressions, is
not only able to endure tortures, but is able to endure and quench them. The pinching and cutting
of the flesh only added energy to the death song of the American Indian, and even the slave under
the lash is sustained by the indignant sense of his wrongs."

In the cases of persons engaged in occupations requiring a fine degree of Touch, the development
is marvelous. The engraver passes his hand over the plate, and is able to distinguish the slightest
imperfection. And the handler of cloth and fabrics is able to distinguish the finest differences,
simply by the sense of touch. Wool sorters also exercise a wonderfully high degree of fineness of
touch. And the blind are able to make up for the loss of sight by their greatly increased sense of
Touch, cases being recorded where the blind have been able to distinguish color by the different
"feel" of the material.

The sense of Taste is closely allied to that of Touch--in fact some authorities have considered Taste
as a very highly developed sense of Touch in certain surfaces of the body, the tongue notably. It will
be remembered that the tongue has the finest sense of Touch, and it also has the sense of Taste
developed to perfection. In Taste and Touch the object must be brought in direct contact with the
organ of sense, which is not the case in Smell, Hearing, or Sight. And, be it remembered, that the
latter senses have special nerves, while Taste is compelled to fall back upon the ordinary nerves of
Touch. It is true that Taste is confined to a very small part of the surface of the body, while Touch is
general. But this only indicates a special development of the special area. The sense of Taste also
depends to a great extent upon the presence of fluids, and only substances that are soluble make
their presence known through the organs and sense of Taste.

Physiologists report that the sense of Taste in some persons is so acute that one part of strychnine
in one million parts of water has been distinguished. There are certain occupations, such as that of
wine-tasters, tea-tasters, etc., the followers of which manifest a degree of fineness of Taste almost

The sense of Smell is closely connected with the sense of Taste, and often acts in connection
therewith, as the tiny particles of the substance in the mouth arise to the organs of Smell, by means
of the opening or means of communication situated in the back part of the mouth. Besides which
the nose usually detects the odor of substances before they enter the mouth. The sense of Smell
operates by reason of the tiny particles or the object being carried to the mucous membrane of the Page 59
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interior of the nose, by means of the air. The membrane, being moist, seizes and holds these
particles for a moment, and the fine nervous organism reports differences and qualities and the
Mind is thus informed of the nature of the object.

The sense of Smell is very highly developed among animals, who are compelled to rely upon it to a
considerable extent. And many occupations among men require the development of this sense, for
instance, the tobacconist, the wine dealer, the perfumers, the chemist, etc. It is related that in the
cases of certain blind people, it has been observed that they could distinguish persons in this

The sense of Hearing is a more complex one than in the case of Taste, Touch and Smell. In the latter
three the objects to be sensed must be brought in close contact with the sense-organs, while in
Hearing the object may be far removed, the impressions being carried by the vibrations of the air,
which are caught up and reported upon by the nervous organism of the sense of Hearing. The
internal mechanism of the ear is most wonderfully intricate and complex, and excites to wonder
the person examining it. It cannot be described here for want of space, but the student is advised
to inquire into it if he has access to any library containing books on the subject. It is a wonderful
illustration of the work of the mind in building up for itself instruments with which to work--to
acquire knowledge.

The ear records vibrations in the air from 20 or 32 per second, the rate of the lowest audible note,
to those of 38,000 per second, the rate of the highest audible note. There is a great difference in
individuals in regard to the fineness of the sense of Hearing. But all may develop this sense by the
application of Attention. The animals and savages have wonderfully acute senses of Hearing
developed only along the lines of distinctness, however--on the other hand musicians have
developed the sense along different lines.

The sense of Sight is generally conceded to be the highest and most complex of all the senses of
Man. It deals with a far larger number of objects--at longer distances--and gives a far greater
variety of reports to the mind than any of its associate senses. It is the sense of Touch magnified
many times. As Wilson says of it, "Our sight may be considered as a more delicate and diffusive kind
of touch that spreads itself over an infinite number of bodies; comprehends the largest figures, and
brings into our reach some of the most remote parts of the universe."

The sense of Sight receives its impressions from the outside world by means of waves that travel
from body to body--from sun to earth, and from lamp to eye. These waves of light arise from
vibrations in substance, of an almost incredible degree of rapidity. The lowest light vibration is
about 450,000,000,000,000 per second, while the highest is about 750,000,000,000,000 per
second. These figures deal only with the vibrations recognizable by the eye as light. Above and
below these figures of the scale are countless other degrees invisible to the eye, although some of
them may be recorded by instruments. The different sensations of color, depend upon the rate of
the vibrations, red being the limit of the lowest, and violet the limit of the highest visible
vibrations--orange, yellow, green, blue, and indigo being the intermediate rates or colors. Page 60
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The cultivation of the sense of Sight, under the aid of Attention is most important to ail persons. By
being able to clearly see and distinguish the parts of an object, a degree of knowledge regarding it
is obtained that one may not acquire without the said exercise of the faculty. We have spoken of
this under the subject of Attention, in a previous lesson, to which lesson we again refer the student.
The fixing of the eye upon an object has the power of concentrating the thoughts and preventing
them from wandering. The eye has other properties and qualities that will be dwelt upon in future
lessons. It has other uses than seeing. The influence of the eye is a marvelous thing, and may be
cultivated and developed.

We trust that what we have said will bring the student to a realization of the importance of
developing the powers of Perception. The senses have been developed by the mind during a long
period of evolution and effort that surely would not have been given unless the object in view was
worth it all. The "I" insists upon obtaining knowledge of the Universe, and much of this knowledge
may be obtained only through the senses. The Yogi student must be "wide awake" and possessed
of developed senses and powers of Perception. The senses of Sight and Hearing, the two latest in
the scale of Evolutionary growth and unfoldment, must receive a particular degree of attention.
The student must make himself "aware" of what is going on about and around him, so that he may
"catch" the best vibrations.

It would surprise many Westerners if they could come in contact with a highly developed Yogi, and
witness the marvelously finely developed senses he possesses. He is able to distinguish the finest
differences in things, and his mind is so trained that, in thought, he may draw conclusions from
what he has perceived, in a manner that seems almost "second-sight" to the uninitiated. In fact, a
certain degree of second-sight is possible to one who develops his sense of Sight, under the urge of
Attention. A new world is opened out to such a person. One must learn to master the senses, not
only in the direction of being independent of and superior to their urgings, but also in the matter of
developing them to a high degree. The development of the physical senses, also has much to do
with the development of the "Astral Senses," of which we have spoken in our "Fourteen Lessons,"
and of which we may have more to say in the present series. The idea of Raja Yoga is to render the
student the possessor of a highly developed Mind, with highly developed instruments with which
the mind may work.

In our future lessons we shall give the student many illustrations, directions, and exercises
calculated to develop the different faculties of the mind--not only the ordinary faculties of everyday
use, but others hidden behind these familiar faculties and senses. Commencing with the next
lesson, we shall present a system of exercises, drills, etc., the purpose of which will be the above
mentioned development of the faculties of the Mind.

In this lesson we shall not attempt to give specific exercises, but will content ourselves with calling
the attention of the student to a few general rules underlying the development of Perception.


The first thing to remember in acquiring the art of Perception is that one should not attempt to
perceive the whole of a complex thing or object at the same time, or at once. One should consider Page 61
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the object in detail, and then, by grouping the details, he will find that he has considered the whole.
Let us take the face of a person as a familiar object. If one tries to perceive a face as a whole, he will
find that he will meet with a certain degree of failure, the impression being indistinct and cloudy, it
following, also, that the memory of that face will correspond with the original perception.

But let the observer consider the face in detail, first the eyes, then the nose, then the mouth, then
the chin, then the hair, then the outline of the face, the complexion, etc., and he will find that he
will have acquired a clear and distinct impression or perception of the whole face.

The same rule may be applied to any subject or object. Let us take another familiar illustration. You
wish to observe a building. If you simply get a general perception of the building as a whole, you
will be able to remember very little about it, except its general outlines, shape, size, color, etc. And
a description will prove to be very disappointing. But if you have noted, in detail, the material used,
the shape of the doors, chimney, roof, porches, decorations, trimmings, ornamentation, size and
number of the window-panes etc., etc., the shape and angles of the roof, etc., you will have an
intelligent idea of the building, in the place of a mere general outline or impression of such as might
be acquired by an animal in passing.

We will conclude this lesson with an anecdote of the methods of that famous naturalist Agassiz, in
his training of his pupils. His pupils became renowned for their close powers of observation and
perception, and their consequent ability to "think" about the things they had seen. Many of them
rose to eminent positions, and claimed that this was largely by reason of their careful training.

The tale runs that a new student presented himself to Agassiz one day, asking to be set to work.
The naturalist took a fish from a jar in which it had been preserved, and laying it before the young
student bade him observe it carefully, and be ready to report upon what he had noticed about the
fish. The student was then left alone with the fish. There was nothing especially interesting about
that fish--it was like many other fishes that he had seen before. He noticed that it had fins and
scales, and a mouth and eyes, yes, and a tail. In a half hour he felt certain that he had observed all
about that fish that there was to be perceived. But the naturalist remained away.

The time rolled on, and the youth, having nothing else to do, began to grow restless and weary. He
started out to hunt up the teacher, but he failed to find him, and so had to return and gaze again at
that wearisome fish. Several hours had passed, and he knew but little more about the fish than he
did in the first place.

He went out to lunch and when he returned it was still a case of watching the fish. He felt disgusted
and discouraged, and wished he had never come to Agassiz, whom, it seemed, was a stupid old
man after all,--one away behind the times. Then, in order to kill time, he began to count the scales.
This completed he counted the spines of the fins. Then he began to draw a picture of the fish. In
drawing the picture he noticed that the fish had no eyelids. He thus made the discovery that as his
teacher had expressed it often, in lectures, "a pencil is the best of eyes." Shortly after the teacher
returned, and after ascertaining what the youth had observed, he left rather disappointed, telling
the boy to keep on looking and maybe he would see something. Page 62
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This put the boy on his mettle, and he began to work with his pencil, putting down little details that
had escaped him before, but which now seemed very plain to him. He began to catch the secret of
observation. Little by little he brought to light new objects of interest about the fish. But this did
not suffice his teacher, who kept him at work on the same fish for three whole days. At the end of
that time the student really knew something about the fish, and, better than all, had acquired the
"knack" and habit of careful observation and perception in detail.

Years after, the student, then attained to eminence, is reported as saying: "That was the best
zoological lesson I ever had--a lesson whose influence has extended to the details of every
subsequent study; a legacy that the professor left to me, as he left to many others, of inestimable
value, which we could not buy, and with which we cannot part."

Apart from the value to the student of the particular information obtained, was the quickening of
the perceptive faculties that enabled him to observe the important points in a subject or object,
and, consequently to deduce important information from that which was observed. The Mind is
hungry for knowledge, and it has by years of weary evolution and effort built up a series of sense
systems in order to yield it that knowledge and it is still building. The men and women in the world
who have arrived at the point of success have availed themselves of these wonderful channels of
information, and by directing them under the guidance of Will and Attention, have attained
wonderful results. These things are of importance, and we beg of our students not to pass by this
portion of the subject as uninteresting. Cultivate a spirit of wide-awakeness and perception, and
the "knowing" that will come to you will surprise you.

No only do you develop the existing senses by such practice and use, but you help in the
unfoldment of the latent powers and senses that are striving for unfoldment. By using and
exercising the faculties that we have, we help to unfold those for the coming of which we have
been dreaming.


I am a Soul, possessed of channels of communication with the outer world. I will use these
channels, and thereby acquire the information and knowledge necessary for my mental
development. I will exercise and develop my organs of sense, knowing that in so doing I shall cause
to unfold the higher senses, of which they are but forerunners and symbols. I will be "wide-awake"
and open to the inflow of knowledge and information. The Universe is my Home--I will explore it. Page 63
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We have thought it well to make a slight change in the arrangement of these lessons--that is, in the
order in which they should appear. We had contemplated making this Seventh Lesson a series of
Mental Drills, intended to develop certain of the mental faculties, but we have decided to postpone
the same until a later lesson, believing that by so doing a more logical sequence or order of
arrangement will be preserved. In this lesson we will tell you of the unfoldment of consciousness in
Man, and in the next lesson, and probably in the one following it, we shall present to you a clear
statement regarding the states of mind, below and over consciousness--a most wonderful region,
we assure you, and one that has been greatly misunderstood and misinterpreted. This will lead up
to the subject of the cultivation of the various faculties--both conscious and outside of
consciousness, and the series will be concluded by three lessons going right to the heart of this part
of the subject, and giving certain rules and instruction calculated to develop Man's wonderful
"thought-machine" that will be of the greatest interest and importance to all of our students. When
the lessons are concluded you will see that the present arrangement is most logical and proper.

In this lesson we take up the subject of "The Unfoldment of Consciousness"--a most interesting
subject. Many of us have been in the habit of identifying "consciousness" with mind, but as we
proceed with this series of lessons we will see that that which is called "consciousness" is but a
small portion of the mind of the individual, and even that small part is constantly changing its
states, and unfolding new states undreamed of.

"Consciousness" is a word we use very often in considering the science of the Mind. Let us see what
it means. Webster defines it as one's "knowledge of sensations and mental operations, or of what
passes in one's own mind." Halleck defines it as "that undefinable characteristic of mental states
which causes one to be aware of them." But, as Halleck states, "Consciousness is incapable of
definition. To define anything we are obliged to describe it in terms of something else. And there is
nothing else in the world like consciousness, hence we can define it only in terms of itself, and that
is very much like trying to lift one's self by one's own boot straps. Consciousness is one of the
greatest mysteries that confronts us."

Before we can understand what Consciousness really is, we must know just what "Mind" really
is--and that knowledge is lacking, notwithstanding the many injenious theories evolved in order to
explain the mystery. The metaphysicians do not throw much light on the subject, and as for
materialistic science, listen to what Huxley says: "How it comes about that anything so remarkable
as a state of consciousness comes about by the result of irritating nervous tissue, is just as
unaccountable as the appearance of the genie when Aladdin rubbed his lamp."

To many persons the words "consciousness" and "mental process," or "thought" are regarded as
synonymous. And, in fact, psychologists so held until quite recently. But now it is generally
accepted as a fact that mental processes are not limited to the field of consciousness, and it is now
generally taught that the field of sub-consciousness (that is, "under" conscious) mentation, is of a
much greater extent than that of conscious mentation.

Not only is it true that the mind can hold in consciousness but one fact at any one instant, and that,
consequently, only a very small fraction of our knowledge can be in consciousness at any one Page 64
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moment, but it is also true that the consciousness plays but a very small part in the totality of
mental processes, or mentation. The mind is not conscious of the greater portion of its own
activities--Maudsley says that only ten per cent comes into the field of consciousness. Taine has
stated it in these words: "Of the world which makes up our being, we only perceive the highest
points--the lighted up peaks of a continent whose lower levels remain in the shade."

But it is not our intention to speak of this great subconscious region of the mind at this point, for
we shall have much to do with it later on. It is mentioned here in order to show that the
enlargement or development of consciousness is not so much a matter of "growth" as it is an
"unfoldment"--not a new creation or enlargement from outside, but rather an unfoldment outward
from within.

From the very beginning of Life--among the Particles of Inorganic Substance, may be found traces
of something like Sensation, and response thereto. Writers have not cared to give to this
phenomenon the name of "sensation," or "sensibility," as the terms savored too much of "senses,"
and "sense-organs." But Modern Science has not hesitated to bestow the names so long withheld.
The most advanced scientific writers do not hesitate to state that in reaction, chemical response,
etc., may be seen indications of rudimentary sensation. Haeckel says: "I cannot imagine the
simplest chemical and physical process without attributing the movement of the material particles
to unconscious sensation. The idea of Chemical Affinity consists in the fact that the various
chemical elements perceive the qualitative differences in other elements and experience 'pleasure'
or 'revulsion' at contacts with them, and execute their specific movements on this ground." He also
speaks of the sensitiveness of "plasm," or the substance of "living bodies," as being "only a superior
degree of the general irritability of substance."

Chemical reaction, between atoms, is spoken of by chemists as a "sensitive" reaction. Sensitiveness
is found even in the Particles of Inorganic Substance, and may be regarded as the first glimmerings
of thought. Science recognizes this when it speaks of the unconscious sensation of the Particles as
athesis or "feeling," and the unconscious Will that responds thereto, as tropesis, or "inclination."
Haeckel says of this that "Sensation perceives the different qualities of the stimuli, and feeling the
quantity," and also, "We may ascribe the feeling of pleasure and pain (in the contact with
qualitatively differing atoms) to all atoms, and so explain the elective affinity in chemistry
(attraction of loving atoms, inclination; repulsion of hating atoms, disinclination)."

It is impossible to form a clear or intelligent idea of the phenomenon of chemical affinity, etc.,
unless we attribute to the Atoms something akin to Sensation. It is likewise impossible to
understand the actions of the Molecules, unless we think of them as possessing something akin to
Sensation. The Law of Attraction is based upon Mental States in Substance. The response of
Inorganic Substance to Electricity and Magnetism is also another evidence of Sensation and the
response thereto.

In the movements and operations of crystal-life we obtain evidences of still a little higher forms of
Sensation and response thereto. The action of crystallization is very near akin to that of some low
forms of plasmic action. In fact, the "missing link" between plant life and the crystals is claimed to
have been found in some recent discoveries of Science, the connection being found in certain Page 65
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crystals in the interior of plants composed of carbon combinations, and resembling the inorganic
crystals in many ways.

Crystals grow along certain lines and forms up to a certain size. Then they begin to form
"baby-crystals" on their surfaces, which then take on the growth--the processes being almost
analogous to cell-life. Processes akin to fermentation have been detected among chemicals. In
many ways it may be seen that the beginning of Mental Life must be looked for among the Minerals
and Particles--the latter, be it remembered, composing not only inorganic, but also Organic

As we advance in the scale of life, we are met with constantly increasing unfoldment of mentation,
the simple giving place to the complex manifestations. Passing by the simple vital processes of the
monera, or single-celled "things," we notice the higher forms of cell life, with growing sensibility or
sensation. Then we come to the cell-groups, in which the individual cells manifest sensation of a
kind, coupled with a community-sensation. Food is distinguished, selected and captured, and
movements exercised in pursuit of the same. The living thing is beginning to manifest more
complex mental states. Then the stage of the lower plants is reached, and we notice the varied
phenomena of that region, evidencing an increased sensitiveness, although there are practically no
signs of special organs of sense. Then we pass on to the higher plant life, in which begin to manifest
certain "sensitive-cells," or groups of such cells, which are rudimentary sense organs. Then the
forms of animal life, and considered with rising degrees of sensations and growing sense apparatus,
or sense organs, gradually unfolding into something like nervous systems.

Among the lower animal forms there are varying degrees of mentation with accompanying nerve
centers and sense-organs, but little or no signs of consciousness, gradually ascending until we have
dawning consciousness in the reptile kingdom, etc., and fuller consciousness and a degree of
intelligent thought in the still higher forms, gradually increasing until we reach the plane of the
highest mammals, such as the horse, dog, elephant, ape, etc., which animals have complex nervous
systems, brains and well developed consciousness. We need not further consider the forms of
mentation in the forms of life below the Conscious stage, for that would carry us far from our

Among the higher forms of animal life, after a "dawn period" or semi-consciousness, we come to
forms of life among the lower animals possessing a well developed degree of mental action and
Consciousness, the latter being called by psychologists "Simple Consciousness," but which term we
consider too indefinite, and which we will term "Physical Consciousness," which will give a fair idea
of the thing itself. We use the word "Physical" in the double sense of "External," and "Relating to
the material structure of a living being," both of which definitions are found in the dictionaries. And
that is just what Physical Consciousness really is--an "awareness" in the mind, or a "consciousness"
of the "external" world as evidenced by the senses; and of the "body" of the animal or person. The
animal or person thinking on the plane of Physical Consciousness (all the higher animals do, and
many men seem unable to rise much higher) identifies itself with the physical body, and is
conscious only of thoughts of that body and the outside world. It "knows," but not being conscious
of mental operations, or of the existence of its mind, it does not "know that it knows." This form of
consciousness, while infinitely above the mentation of the nonconscious plane of "sansation," is like Page 66
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a different world of thought from the consciousness of the highly developed intellectual man of our
age and race.

It is difficult for a man to form an idea of the Physical Consciousness of the lower animals and
savages, particularly as he finds it difficult to understand his own consciousness except by the act of
being conscious. But observation and reason have given us a fair degree of understanding of what
this Physical Consciousness of the animal is like--or at least in what respect it differs from our own
consciousness. Let us take a favorite illustration. A horse standing out in the cold sleet and rain
undoubtedly feels the discomfort, and possibly pain, for we know by observation that animals feel
both. But he is not able to analyze his mental states and wonder when his master will come out to
him--think how cruel it is to keep him out of the warm stable--wonder whether he will be taken out
in the cold again tomorrow--feel envious of other horses who are indoors--wonder why he is
compelled to be out cold nights, etc., etc.,--in short, he does not think as would a reasoning man
under such circumstances. He is aware of the discomfort, just as would be the man--and he would
run home if he could just as would the man. But he is not able to pity himself, nor to think about his
personality as would the man, nor does he wonder whether such a life is worth living, after all. He
"knows," but is not able to think of himself as knowing--he does not "know that he knows," as we
do. He experiences the physical pain and discomfort, but is spared the mental discomfort and
concern arising from the physical, which man so often experiences.

The animal cannot shift its consciousness from the sensations of the outer world to the inner states
of being. It is not able to "know itself." The difference may be clumsily illustrated by the example of
a man feeling, seeing or hearing something that gives him a pleasurable sensation, or the reverse.
He is conscious of the feeling or sensation, and that it is pleasurable or otherwise. That is Physical
Consciousness, and the animal may share it with him. But it stops right there with the animal. But
the man may begin to wonder why the sensation is pleasurable and to associate it with other things
and persons; or speculate why he dislikes it, what will follow, and so on--that is Mental
Consciousness, because he recognizes an inward self, and is turning his attention inward. He may
see another man and experience a feeling or sensation of attraction or aversion--like or dislike. This
is Physical Consciousness, and an animal also may experience the sensation. But the man goes
further than the animal, and wonders just what there is about the man he likes or detests, and may
compare himself to the man and wonder whether the latter feels as he does, and so on--this is
Mental Consciousness.

In animals the mental gaze is freely directed outward, and never returns upon itself. In man the
mental gaze may be directed inward, or may return inward after its outward journey. The animal
"knows"--the man not only "knows," but he "knows that he knows," and is able to investigate that
"knowing" and speculate about it. We call this higher consciousness Mental Consciousness. The
operation of Physical Consciousness we call Instinct--the operation of Mental Consciousness we call

The Man who has Mental Consciousness not only "feels" or "senses" things, but he has words or
mental concepts of these feelings and sensations and may think of himself as experiencing them,
separating himself, the sensation or feeling, and the thing felt or sensed. The man is able to think: "I
feel; I hear; I see; I smell; I taste; I desire; I do," etc., etc. The very words indicate Mental Page 67
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Consciousness recognizing mental states and giving them names, and also recognizing something
called "I" that experiences the sensations. This latter fact has caused psychologists to speak of this
stage as "Self-consciousness," but we reserve this idea of the "I" consciousness for a higher stage.

The animal experiences something that gives it the impressions or feeling that we call "pain,"
"hurt," "pleasant," "sweet," "bitter," etc., all being forms of sensation, but it is unable to think of
them in words. The pain seems to be a part of itself, although possibly associated with some person
or thing that caused it. The study of the unfoldment of consciousness in a young baby will give one
a far better idea of the grades and distinctions than can be obtained from reading mere words.

Mental Consciousness is a growth. As Halleck says, "Many persons never have more than a misty
idea of such a mental attitude. They always take themselves for granted, and never turn the gaze
inward." It has been doubted whether the savages have developed Self-consciousness, and even
many men of our own race seem to be but little above the animals in intellect and consciousness.
They do not seem able to "know themselves" even slightly. To them the "I" seems to be a purely
physical thing--a body having desires and feeling but little more. They are able to feel an act, but
scarcely more. They are not able to set aside any physical "not--I," being utterly unable to think of
themselves as anything else but a Body. The "I" and the Body are one with them, and they seem
incapable of distinguishing between them.

Then comes another stage in which mental-consciousness proper sets in. The man begins to realize
that he has "a mind." He is able to "know himself" as a mental being, and to turn the gaze inward a
little. This period of development may be noticed in young children. For a time they speak of
themselves as a third person, until finally they begin to say "I." Then a little later comes the ability
to know their own mental states as such--they know that they have a mind, and are able to
distinguish between it and the body. It is related that some children experience a feeling of terror
when they pass into this stage. They exhibit signs of bashfulness and what is commonly termed
"self-consciousness" in that sense. Some tell us in after years that when they became aware of
themselves as an entity they were overcome with alarm, as if by a sense of loneliness and apartness
from the Universe. Young people often feel this way for several years. There seems to be a distinct
feeling that the Universe is antagonistic to and set apart from them.

And, although this feeling of separateness and apartness grows less acute as the man grows older,
yet it is always present to a greater or less degree until a still higher stage--the Ego-consciousness is
reached, when it disappears as we shall see. And this mental-conscious stage is a hard one for
many. They are entangled in a mass of mental states which the man thinks is "himself," and the
struggle between the real "I" and its confining sheaths is painful. And it becomes still more painful
as the end is neared, for as man advances in mental-consciousness and knowledge he feels more
keenly and suffers accordingly. Man eats the fruit of the Tree of Knowledge and begins to suffer,
and is driven out of the Garden of Eden of the child and primitive races, who live like the birds of
the air and concern themselves not about mental states and problems. But there is deliverance
ahead in the shape of a higher consciousness, although but few realize it and still fewer have gained
it. Perhaps this lesson may point out the way for you. Page 68
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With the birth of mental-consciousness comes the knowledge that there is a mind in others. Man is
able to speculate and reason about the mental states of other men, because he recognizes these
states within himself. As man advances in the Mental Consciousness he begins to develop a
constantly increasing degree and grade of Intellect, and accordingly he attaches the greatest
importance to that part of his nature. Some men worship Intellect as a God, ignoring its limitations
which other thinkers have pointed out. Such people are apt to reason that because the human
intellect (in its present state of development) reports that such a thing must be, or cannot possibly
be, that the matter is forever settled. They ignore the fact that it is possible that Man's Intellect, in
its present state of unfoldment, may be able to take cognizance of only a very small part of the
Universal Fact, and that there may be regions upon regions of Reality and Fact of which he cannot
even dream, so far are they removed from his experience. The unfoldment of a new sense would
open out a new world and might bring to light facts that would completely revolutionize our entire
world of conceptions by reason of the new information it would give us.

But, nevertheless, from this Mental Consciousness has come the wonderful work of Intellect, as
shown in the achievements of Man up to this time, and while we must recognize its limitations, we
gladly join in singing its praises. Reason is the tool with which Man is digging into the mine of Facts,
bringing to light new treasures every day. This stage of Mental Consciousness is bringing to Man
knowledge of himself--knowledge of the Universe--that is well worth the price he pays for it. For
Man does pay a price for entrance into this stage--and he pays an increasing price as he advances in
its territory, for the higher he advances the more keenly he feels and suffers, as well as enjoys.
Capacity for pain is the price Man pays for Attainment, up to a certain stage. His pain passes from
the Physical to the Mental consciousness, and he becomes aware of problems that he never dreamt
existed, and the lack of an intelligent answer produces mental suffering. And the mental suffering
that comes to him from unsatisfied longings, disappointment, the pain of others whom he loves,
etc., is far worse than any physical suffering.

The animal lives its animal life and is contented, for it knows no better. If it has enough to eat--a
place to sleep--a mate--it is happy. And some men are likewise. But others find themselves involved
in a world of mental discomfort. New wants arise, and the lack of satisfaction brings pain.
Civilization becomes more and more complex, and brings its new pains as well as new pleasures.
Man attaches himself to "things," and each day creates for himself artificial wants, which he must
labor to meet. His Intellect may not lead him upward, but instead may merely enable him to invent
new and subtle means and ways of gratifying his senses to a degree impossible to the animals.
Some men make a religion of the gratification of their sensuality--their appetites--and become
beasts magnified by the power of Intellect. Others become vain, conceited and puffed up with a
sense of the importance of their Personality (the false "I"). Others become morbidly introspective,
and spend their time analyzing and dissecting their moods, motives, feelings, etc. Others exhaust
their capacity for pleasure and happiness, but looking outside for it instead of within, and become
blase, bored, ennuied and an affliction to themselves We mention these things not in a spirit of
Pessimism but merely to show that even this great Mental Consciousness has a reverse and ugly
side as well as the bright face that has been ascribed to it. Page 69
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As man reaches the higher stages of this Mental Consciousness, and the next higher stage begins to
dawn upon him, he is apt to feel more keenly than ever the insufficiency of Life as it appears to
him. He is unable to understand Himself--his origin, destiny, purpose and nature--and he chafes
against the bars of the cage of Intellect in which he is confined. He asks himself the question,
"Whence come I--Whither go I--What is the object of my Existence?" He becomes dissatisfied with
the answers the world has to give him to these questions, and he cries aloud in despair--and but
the answer of his own voice comes back to him from the impassable walls with which he is
surrounded. He does not realize that his answer must come from Within--but so it is.

Psychology stops when it reaches the limits of Mental Consciousness, or as it calls it
"Self-Consciousness," and denies that there is anything beyond--any unexplored regions of the
Mind. It laughs at the reports that come from those who have penetrated farther within the
recesses of their being, and dismisses the reports as mere "dreams," "fantasies," "illusions,"
"ecstatic imaginings," "abnormal states," etc., etc. But, nevertheless, there are schools of thought
that teach of these higher states, and there are men of all ages and races that have entered them
and have reported concerning them. And we feel justified in asking you to take them into

There are two planes of Consciousness, of which we feel it proper to speak, for we have obtained
more or less information regarding them. There are still higher planes, but they belong to higher
phases of life than are dealt with here.

The first of these planes or states of Consciousness, above the "Self-Consciousness" of the
psychologists (which we have called "Mental Consciousness") may be called "Ego-consciousness,"
for it brings an "awareness" of the Reality of the Ego. This "awareness" is far above the
Self-consciousness of the man who is able to distinguish "I" from "You," and to give it a name. And
far above the consciousness that enables a man, as he rises in the scale, to distinguish the "I" from
faculty after faculty of the mind, which he is able to recognize as "not--I," until he finds left a mental
something that he cannot set aside, which he calls "I"--although this stage alone is very much
higher than that of the average of the race, and is a high degree of Attainment itself. It is akin to
this last stage, and yet still fuller and more complete. In the dawning of Ego Consciousness the "I"
recognizes itself still more clearly and, more than this, is fully imbued with a sense and "awareness"
of its own Reality, unknown to it before. This awareness is not a mere matter of reasoning--it is a
"consciousness," just as is Physical Consciousness and Mental Consciousness something different
from an "intellectual conviction." It is a Knowing, not a Thinking or Believing. The "I" knows that it is
Real--that it has its roots in the Supreme Reality underlying all the Universe, and partakes of its
Essence. It does not know what this Reality is, but it knows that it is Real, and something different
from anything in the world of name, form, number, time, space, cause and effect--something
Transcendental and surpassing all human experience. And knowing this, it knows that it cannot be
destroyed or hurt; cannot die, but is immortal; and that there is Something which is the very
essence of Good behind of, underneath and even in itself. And in this certainty and consciousness is
there Peace, Understanding and Power. When it fully bursts upon one, Doubt, Fear, Unrest and
Dissatisfaction drop from him like wornout garments and he finds himself clothed in the Faith that Page 70
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Knows; Fearlessness; Restfulness; Satisfaction. Then he is able to say understandingly and with
meaning "I AM."

This Ego Consciousness is coming to many as a dawning knowledge--the light is just rising from
behind the hills. To others it has come gradually and slowly, but fully, and they now live in the full
light of the consciousness. Others it has burst upon like a flash, or vision--like a light falling from the
clear sky, almost blinding them at first, but leaving them changed men and women, possessed of
that something that cannot be understood by or described to those who have not experienced it.
This last stage is called "Illumination" in one of its forms.

The man of the Ego Consciousness may not understand the Riddle of the Universe or be able to give
an answer to the great Questions of Life--but he has ceased to worry about them--they now disturb
him not. He may use his intellect upon them as before, but never with the feeling that in their
intellectual solution rests his happiness or peace of mind. He knows that he stands on solid rock,
and though the storms of the world of matter and force may beat upon him, he will not be hurt.
This and other things he knows. He cannot prove these things to others, for they are not
demonstrable by argument--he himself did not get them in that way. And so he says but little about
it--but lives his life as if he knew them not, so far as outward appearances go. But inwardly he is a
changed man--his life is different from that of his brothers, for while their souls are wrapped in
slumber or are tossing in troubled dreams, his Soul has awakened and is gazing upon the world with
bright and fearless eyes. There are, of course, different stages or degrees of this Consciousness, just
as there are in the lower planes of consciousness. Some have it to a slight degree, while others have
it fully. Perhaps this lesson will tell some of its readers just what is the thing that has "happened" to
them and which they hesitate to speak of to their closest friend or life companion. To others it may
open the way to a fuller realization. We sincerely trust so, for one does not begin to Live until he
knows the "I" as Reality.

There is a stage still higher than this last mentioned but it has come to but very few of the race.
Reports of it come from all times, races, countries. It has been called "Cosmic Consciousness," and
is described as an awareness of the Oneness of Life--that is, a consciousness that the Universe is
filled with One Life--an actual perception and "awareness" that the Universe is full of Life, Motion
and Mind, and that there is no such thing as Blind Force, or Dead Matter, but that All is alive,
vibrating and intelligent. That is, of course, that the Real Universe, which is the Essence or
background of the Universe of Matter, Energy and Mind, is as they describe. In fact, the description
of those who have had glimpses of this state would indicate that they see the Universe as All
Mind--that All is Mind at the last. This form of consciousness has been experienced by men here
and there--only a few--in moments of "Illumination," the period lasting but a very short space of
time, then fading away, leaving but a memory. In the moment of the "Illumination" there came to
those experiencing it a sense of "intouch-ness" with Universal Knowledge and Life, impossible to
describe, accompanied by a Joy beyond understanding.

Regarding this last, "Cosmic Consciousness," we would state that it means more than an intellectual
conviction, belief or realization of the facts as stated, for an actual vision and consciousness of
these things came in the moment of Illumination. Some others report that they have a deep abiding
sense of the reality of the facts described by the report of the Illumined, but have not experienced Page 71
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the "vision" or ecstasy referred to. These last people seem to have with them always the same
mental state as that possessed by those who had the "vision" and passed out of it, carrying with
them the remembrance and feeling, but not the actual consciousness attained at the moment.
They agree upon the essential particulars of the reports. Dr. Maurice Bucke, now passed out of this
plane of life, wrote a book entitled "Cosmic Consciousness," in which he describes a number of
these cases, including his own, Walt Whitman's and others, and in which he holds that this stage of
consciousness is before the race and will gradually come to it in the future. He holds that the
manifestation of it which has come to some few of the race, as above stated, is but the first beams
of the sun which are flashing upon us and which are but prophecies of the appearance of the great
body of light itself.

We shall not here consider at length the reports of certain great religious personages of the past,
who have left records that in moments of great spiritual exaltation they became conscious of
"being in the presence of the Absolute," or perhaps within the radius of "the light of Its
countenance." We have great respect for these reports, and have every reason for believing many
of them authentic, notwithstanding the conflicting reports that have been handed down to us by
those experiencing them. These reports are conflicting because of the fact that the minds of those
who had these glimpses of consciousness were not prepared or trained to fully understand the
nature of the phenomena. They found themselves in the spiritual presence of Something of awful
grandeur and spiritual rank, and were completely dazed and bewildered at the sight. They did not
understand the nature of the Absolute, and when they had sufficiently recovered they reported
that they had been in the "presence of God"--the word "God" meaning their particular conception
of Deity--that is, the one appearing as Deity in their own particular religious creed or school. They
saw nothing to cause them to identify this Something with their particular conception of Deity,
except that they thought that "it must be God," and knowing no other God except their own
particular conception, they naturally identifying the Something with "God" as they conceived Him
to be. And their reports naturally were along these lines.

Thus the reports of all religions are filled with accounts of the so-called miraculous occurrences.
The Catholic saint reports that he "saw of light of God's countenance," and the non-Catholic reports
likewise regarding God as he knows him. The Mohammedan reports that he caught a glimpse of the
face of Allah, and the Buddhist tells us that he saw Buddha under the tree. The Brahman has seen
the face of Brahma, and the various Hindu sects have men who give similar reports regarding their
own particular deities. The Persians have given similar reports, and even the ancient Egyptians have
left records of similar occurrences. These conflicting reports have led to the belief, on the part of
those who did not understand the nature of the phenomena, that these things were "all
imagination" and fancy, if indeed not rank falsehood and imposture. But the Yogis know better than
this. They know that underneath all these varying reports there is a common ground of truth, which
will be apparent to anyone investigating the matter. They know that all of these reports (except a
few based upon fraudulent imitation of the real phenomenon) are based upon truth and are but
the bewildered reports of the various observers. They know that these people were temporarily
lifted above the ordinary plane of consciousness and were made aware of the existence of a Being
or Beings higher than mortal. It does not follow that they saw "God" or the Absolute, for there are
many Beings of high spiritual growth and development that would appear to the ordinary mortal as Page 72
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a very God. The Catholic doctrine of Angels and Arch-angels is corroborated by those among the
Yogis who have been "behind the Veil," and they give us reports of the "Devas" and other advanced
Beings. So the Yogi accepts these reports of the various mystics, saints and inspired ones, and
accounts for them all by laws perfectly natural to the students of the Yogi Philosophy, but which
appear as supernatural to those who have not studied along these lines.

But we cannot speak further of this phase of the subject in this lesson, for a full discussion of it
would lead us far away from the phase of the general subject before us. But we wish to be
understood as saying that there are certain centers in the mental being of Man from which may
come light regarding the existence of the Absolute and higher order of Beings. In fact, from these
centers come to man that part of his mental "feelings" that he calls "the religious instinct or
intuition." Man does not arrive at that underlying consciousness of "Something Beyond" by means
of his Intellect--it is the glimmer of light coming from the higher centers of the Self. He notices
these gleams of light, but not understanding them, he proceeds to erect elaborate theological and
creedal structures to account for them, the work of the Intellect, however, always lacking that
"feeling" that the intuition itself possesses. True religion, no matter under what name it may
masquerade, comes from the "heart" and is not comforted or satisfied with these Intellectual
explanations, and hence comes that unrest and craving for satisfaction which comes to Man when
the light begins to break through.

But we must postpone a further discussion of this part of the subject for the present. We shall
consider it again in a future lesson in connection with other matters. As we have said, our next two
lessons will take upon the inquiry regarding the regions outside of the consciousness of the
ordinary man. You will find it a most fascinating and instructive inquiry and one that will open up
new fields of thought for many of you.


I Am a Being far greater and grander than I have as yet conceived. I am unfolding gradually but
surely into higher planes of consciousness. I am moving Forward and Upward constantly. My goal is
the Realization of the True Self, and I welcome each stage of Unfoldment that leads me toward my
aim. I am a manifestation of REALITY. I AM. Page 73
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The Self of each of us has a vehicle of expression which we call the Mind, but which vehicle is much
larger and far more complex than we are apt to realize. As a writer has said "Our Self is greater than
we know; it has peaks above, and lowlands below the plateau of our conscious experience." That
which we know as the "conscious mind" is not the Soul. The Soul is not a part of that which we
know in consciousness, but, on the contrary, that which we know in consciousness is but a small
part of the Soul--the conscious vehicle of a greater Self, or "I."

The Yogis have always taught that the mind has many planes of manifestation and action--and that
many of its planes operated above and below the plane of consciousness. Western science is
beginning to realize this fact, and its theories regarding same may be found in any of the later
works on psychology. But this is a matter of recent development in Western science. Until very
recently the text books held that Consciousness and Mind were synonymous, and that the Mind
was conscious of all of its activities, changes and modifications.

Liebnitz was one of the first Western philosophers to advance the idea that there were planes of
mental activity outside of the plane of consciousness, and since his time the leading thinkers have
slowly but surely moved forward to his position.

At the present time it is generally conceded that at least ninety per cent of our mental operations
take place in the out-of-conscious realm. Prof. Elmer Gates, the well known scientist, has said: "At
least ninety per cent of our mental life is sub-conscious. If you will analyze your mental operations
you will find that conscious thinking is never a continuous line of consciousness, but a series of
conscious data with great intervals of subconscious. We sit and try to solve a problem, and fail. We
walk around, try again, and fail. Suddenly an idea dawns that leads to the solution of the problem.
The subconscious processes were at work. We do not volitionally create our own thinking. It takes
place in us. We are more or less passive recipients. We cannot change the nature of a thought, or of
a truth, but we can, as it were, guide the ship by a moving of the helm. Our mentation is largely the
result of the great Cosmic Whole upon us."

Sir William Hamilton says that the sphere of our consciousness is only a small circle in the center of
a far wider sphere of action and thought, of which we are conscious through its effects.

Taine says: "Outside of a little luminous circle, lies a large ring of twilight, and beyond this an
indefinite night; but the events of this twilight and this night are as real as those within the
luminous circle."

Sir Oliver Lodge, the eminent English scientist, speaking of the planes of the mind, says: "Imagine an
iceberg glorying in its crisp solidity, and sparkling pinnacles, resenting attention paid to its
submerged self, or supporting region, or to the saline liquid out of which it arose, and into which in
due course it will some day return. Or, reversing the metaphor, we might liken our present state to
that of the hulls of ships submerged in a dim ocean among strange monsters, propelled in a blind
manner through space; proud perhaps of accumulating many barnacles as decoration; only
recognizing our destination by bumping against the dock-wall; and with no cognizance of the deck
and cabins above us, or the spars and sails--no thought of the sextant, and the compass, and the Page 74
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captain--no perception of the lookout on the mast--of the distant horizon. With no vision of objects
far ahead--dangers to be avoided--destinations to be reached--other ships to be spoken to by
means other than by bodily contact--a region of sunshine and cloud, of space, or perception, and of
intelligence utterly inaccessible to parts below the waterline."

We ask our students to read carefully the above expression of Sir Oliver Lodge, for it gives one of
the clearest and most accurate figures of the actual state of affairs concerning the mental planes
that we have seen in Western writings.

And other Western writers have noted and spoken of these out-of-conscious realms. Lewes has
said: "It is very certain that in every conscious volition--every act that is so characterized--the larger
part of it is quite unconscious. It is equally certain that in every perception there are unconscious
processes of reproduction and inference. There is a middle distance of sub-consciousness, and a
background of unconsciousness."

Taine has told us that: "Mental events imperceptible to consciousness are far more numerous than
the others, and of the world that makes up our being we only perceive the highest points--the
lighted-up peaks of a continent whose lower levels remain in the shade. Beneath ordinary
sensations are their components, that is to say, the elementary sensations, which must be
combined into groups to reach our consciousness."

Maudsley says: "Examine closely and without bias the ordinary mental operations of daily life, and
you will find that consciousness has not one-tenth part of the function therein which it is commonly
assumed to have. In every conscious state there are at work conscious, sub-conscious, and
infra-conscious energies, the last as indispensable as the first."

Oliver Wendall Holmes said: "There are thoughts that never emerge into consciousness, which yet
make their influence felt among the perceptible mental currents, just as the unseen planets sway
the movements of those that are watched and mapped by the astronomer."

Many other writers have given us examples and instances of the operation of the
out-of-consciousness planes of thought. One has written that when the solution of a problem he
had long vainly dealt with, flashed across his mind, he trembled as if in the presence of another
being who had communicated a secret to him. All of us have tried to remember a name or similar
thing without success, and have then dismissed the matter from our minds, only to have the
missing name or thought suddenly presented to our conscious mind a few minutes, or hours,
afterwards. Something in our mind was at work hunting up the missing word, and when it found it
it presented it to us.

A writer has mentioned what he called "unconscious rumination," which happened to him when he
read books presenting new points of view essentially opposed to his previous opinions. After days,
weeks, or months, he found that to his great astonishment the old opinions were entirely
rearranged, and new ones lodged there. Many examples of this unconscious mental digestion and
assimilation are mentioned in the books on the subject written during the past few years. Page 75
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It is related of Sir W. R. Hamilton that he discovered quarternions one day while walking with his
wife in the observatory at Dublin. He relates that he suddenly felt "the galvanic circle of thought"
close, and the sparks that fell from it was the fundamental mathematical relations of his problem,
which is now an important law in mathematics.

Dr. Thompson has written: "At times I have had a feeling of the uselessness of all voluntary effort,
and also that the matter was working itself clear in my mind. It has many times seemed to me that I
was really a passive instrument in the hands of a person not myself. In view of having to wait for
the results of these unconscious processes, I have proved the habit of getting together material in
advance, and then leaving the mass to digest itself till I am ready to write about it. I delayed for a
month the writing of my book 'System of Psychology,' but continued reading the authorities. I
would not try to think about the book. I would watch with interest the people passing the windows.
One evening when reading the paper, the substance of the missing part of the book flashed upon
my mind, and I began to write. This is only a sample of many such experiences."

Berthelot, the founder of Synthetic Chemistry has said that the experiments leading to his
wonderful discoveries have never been the result of carefully followed trains of thought--of pure
reasoning processes--but have come of themselves, so to speak, from the clear sky.

Mozart has written: "I cannot really say that I can account for my compositions. My ideas flow, and
I cannot say whence or how they come. I do not hear in my imagination the parts successively, but I
hear them, as it were, all at once. The rest is merely an attempt to reproduce what I have heard."

Dr. Thompson, above mentioned, has also said: "In writing this work I have been unable to arrange
my knowledge of a subject for days and weeks, until I experienced a clearing up of my mind, when I
took my pen and unhesitatingly wrote the result. I have best accomplished this by leading the
(conscious) mind as far away as possible from the subject upon which I was writing."

Prof. Barrett says: "The mysteriousness of our being is not confined to subtle physiological
processes which we have in common with all animal life. There are higher and more capacious
powers wrapped up in our human personality than are expressed even by what we know of
consciousness, will, or reason. There are supernormal and transcendental powers of which, at
present, we only catch occasional glimpses; and behind and beyond the supernormal there are
fathomless abysses, the Divine ground of the soul; the ultimate reality of which our consciousness
is but the reflection or faint perception. Into such lofty themes I do not propose to enter, they must
be forever beyond the scope of human inquiry; nor is it possible within the limits of this paper to
give any adequate conception of those mysterious regions of our complex personality, which are
open to, and beginning to be disclosed by, scientific investigation."

Rev. Dr. Andrew Murray has written: "Deeper down than where the soul with its consciousness can
enter there is spirit matter linking man with God; and deeper down than the mind and feelings or
will--in the unseen depths of the hidden life--there dwells the Spirit of God." This testimony is
remarkable, coming from that source, for it corroborates and reiterates the Yogi teachings of the
Indwelling Spirit Schofield has written: "Our conscious mind as compared with the unconscious
mind, has been likened to the visible spectrum of the sun's rays, as compared to the invisible part Page 76
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which stretches indefinitely on either side. We know now that the chief part of heat comes from
the ultra-red rays that show no light; and the main part of the chemical changes in the vegetable
world are the results of the ultra-violet rays at the other end of the spectrum, which are equally
invisible to the eye, and are recognized only by their potent effects. Indeed as these invisible rays
extend indefinitely on both sides of the visible spectrum, so we may say that the mind includes not
only the visible or conscious part, and what we have termed the sub-conscious, that which lies
below the red line, but the supraconscious mind that lies at the other end--all those regions of
higher soul and spirit life, of which we are only at times vaguely conscious, but which always exist,
and link us on to eternal verities, on the one side, as surely as the sub-conscious mind links us to
the body on the other."

We know that our students will appreciate the above testimony of Dr. Schofield, for it is directly in
the line of our teachings in the Yogi Philosophy regarding the Planes of the Mind (see "Fourteen

We feel justified in quoting further from Dr. Schofield, for he voices in the strongest manner that
which the Yogi Philosophy teaches as fundamental truths regarding the mind. Dr. Schofield is an
English writer on Psychology, and so far as we know has no tendency toward occultism, his views
having been arrived at by careful scientific study and investigation along the lines of Western
psychology, which renders his testimony all the more valuable, showing as it does, how the human
mind will instinctively find its way to the Truth, even if it has to blaze a new trail through the woods,
departing from the beaten tracks of other minds around it, which lack the courage or enterprise to
strike out for themselves.

Dr. Schofield writes: "The mind, indeed, reaches all the way, and while on the one hand it is
inspired by the Almighty, on the other it energizes the body, all whose purposive life it originates.
We may call the supra-conscious mind the sphere of the spirit life, the sub-conscious the sphere of
the body life, and the conscious mind the middle region where both meet."

Continuing, Dr. Schofield says: "The Spirit of God is said to dwell in believers, and yet, as we have
seen, His presence is not the subject of direct consciousness. We would include, therefore, in the
supra-conscious, all such spiritual ideas, together with conscience--the voice of God, as Max Muller
calls it--which is surely a half-conscious faculty. Moreover, the supra-conscious, like the
sub-conscious, is, as we have said, best apprehended when the conscious mind is not active.
Visions, meditations, prayers, and even dreams have been undoubtedly occasions of spiritual
revelations, and many instances may be adduced as illustrations of the workings of the Spirit apart
from the action of reason or mind. The truth apparently is that the mind as a whole is an
unconscious state, by that its middle registers, excluding the highest spiritual and lowest physical
manifestations, are fitfully illuminated in varying degree by consciousness; and that it is to this
illuminated part of the dial that the word "mind," which rightly appertains to the whole, has been

Oliver Wendell Holmes has said: "The automatic flow of thought is often singularly favored by the
fact of listening to a weak continuous discourse, with just enough ideas in it to keep the (conscious) Page 77
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mind busy. The induced current of thought is often rapid and brilliant in inverse ratio to the force of
the inducing current."

Wundt says: "The unconscious logical processes are carried on with a certainty and regularity which
would be impossible where there exists the possibility of error. Our mind is so happily designed
that it prepares for us the most important foundations of cognition, whilst we have not the
slightest apprehension of the modus operandi. This unconscious soul, like a benevolent stranger,
works and makes provisions for our benefit, pouring only the mature fruits into our laps."

A writer in an English magazine interestingly writes: "Intimations reach our consciousness from
unconsciousness, that the mind is ready to work, is fresh, is full of ideas." "The grounds of our
judgment are often knowledge so remote from consciousness that we cannot bring them to view."
"That the human mind includes an unconscious part; that unconscious events occurring in that part
are proximate causes of consciousness; that the greater part of human intuitional action is an effect
of an unconscious cause; the truth of these propositions is so deducible from ordinary mental
events, and is so near the surface that the failure of deduction to forestall induction in the
discerning of it may well excite wonder." "Our behavior is influenced by unconscious assumptions
respecting our own social and intellectual rank, and that of the one we are addressing. In company
we unconsciously assume a bearing quite different from that of the home circle. After being raised
to a higher rank the whole behavior subtly and unconsciously changes in accordance with it." And
Schofield adds to the last sentence: "This is also the case in a minor degree with different styles and
qualities of dress and different environments. Quite unconsciously we change our behavior,
carriage, and style, to suit the circumstance."

Jensen writes: "When we reflect on anything with the whole force of the mind, we may fall into a
state of entire unconsciousness, in which we not only forget the outer world, but also know nothing
at all of ourselves and the thoughts passing within us after a time. We then suddenly awake as from
a dream, and usually at the same moment the result of our meditations appears as distinctly in
consciousness without our knowing how we reached it."

Bascom says: "It is inexplicable how premises which lie below consciousness can sustain
conclusions in consciousness; how the mind can wittingly take up a mental movement at an
advanced stage, having missed its primary steps."

Hamilton and other writers have compared the mind's action to that of a row of billiard balls, of
which one is struck and the impetus transmitted throughout the entire row, the result being that
only the last ball actually moves, the others remaining in their places. The last ball represents the
conscious thought--the other stages in the unconscious mentation. Lewes, speaking of this
illustration, says: "Something like this, Hamilton says, seems often to occur in a train of thought,
one idea immediately suggesting another into consciousness--this suggestion passing through one
or more ideas which do not themselves rise into consciousness. This point, that we are not
conscious of the formation of groups, but only of a formed group, may throw light on the existence
of unconscious judgments, unconscious reasonings, and unconscious registrations of experience." Page 78
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Many writers have related the process by which the unconscious mentation emerges gradually into
the field of consciousness, and the discomfort attending the process. A few examples may prove
interesting and instructive.

Maudsley says: "It is surprising how uncomfortable a person may be made by the obscure idea of
something which he ought to have said or done, and which he cannot for the life of him remember.
There is an effort of the lost idea to get into consciousness, which is relieved directly the idea bursts
into consciousness."

Oliver Wendell Holmes said: "There are thoughts that never emerge into consciousness, and which
yet make their influence felt among the perceptive mental currents, just as the unseen planets
sway the movements of the known ones." The same writer also remarks: "I was told of a business
man in Boston who had given up thinking of an important question as too much for him. But he
continued so uneasy in his brain that he feared he was threatened with palsy. After some hours the
natural solution of the question came to him, worked out, as he believed, in that troubled interval."

Dr. Schofield mentions several instances of this phase of the workings of the unconscious planes of
the mind. We mention a couple that seem interesting and to the point:

"Last year," says Dr. Schofield, "I was driving to Phillmore Gardens to give some letters to a friend.
On the way, a vague uneasiness sprang up, and a voice seemed to say, 'I doubt if you have those
letters.' Conscious reason rebuked it, and said, 'Of course you have; you took them out of the
drawer specially.' The vague feeling was not satisfied, but could not reply. On arrival I found the
letters were in none of my pockets. On returning I found them on the hall table, where they had
been placed a moment putting on my gloves."

"The other day I had to go to see a patient in Folkestone, in Shakespeare Terrace. I got there very
late, and did not stay but drove down to the Pavilion for the night, it being dark and rainy. Next
morning at eleven I walked up to find the house, knowing the general direction, though never
having walked there before. I went up the main road, and, after passing a certain turning, began to
feel a vague uneasiness coming into consciousness, that I had passed the terrace. On asking the
way, I found it was so; and the turning was where the uneasiness began. The night before was pitch
dark, and very wet, and anything seen from a close carriage was quite unconsciously impressed on
my mind."

Prof. Kirchener says: "Our consciousness can only grasp one quite clear idea at once. All other ideas
are for the time somewhat obscure. They are really existing, but only potentially for consciousness,
i.e., they hover, as it were, on our horizon, or beneath the threshold of consciousness. The fact that
former ideas suddenly return to consciousness is simply explained by the fact that they have
continued psychic existence: and attention is sometimes voluntarily or involuntarily turned away
from the present, and the appearance of former ideas is thus made possible."

Oliver Wendell Holmes says: "Our different ideas are stepping-stones; how we get from one to
another we do not know; something carries us. We (our conscious selves) do not take the step. The
creating and informing spirit, which is within us and not of us, is recognized everywhere in real life. Page 79
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It comes to us as a voice that will be heard; it tells us what we must believe; it frames our sentences
and we wonder at this visitor who chooses our brain as his dwelling place."

Galton says: "I have desired to show how whole states of mental operation that have lapsed out of
ordinary consciousness, admit of being dragged into light."

Montgomery says: "We are constantly aware that feelings emerge unsolicited by any previous
mental state, directly from the dark womb of unconsciousness. Indeed all our most vivid feelings
are thus mystically derived. Suddenly a new irrelevant, unwilled, unlooked-for presence intrudes
itself into consciousness. Some inscrutable power causes it to rise and enter the mental presence as
a sensorial constituent. If this vivid dependence on unconscious forces has to be conjectured with
regard to the most vivid mental occurrences, how much more must such a sustaining foundation be
postulated for those faint revivals of previous sensations that so largely assist in making up our
complex mental presence!"

Sir Benjamin Brodie says: "It has often happened to me to have accumulated a store of facts, but to
have been able to proceed no further. Then after an interval of time, I have found the obscurity and
confusion to have cleared away: the facts to have settled in their right places, though I have not
been sensible of having made any effort for that purpose."

Wundt says: "The traditional opinion that consciousness is the entire field of the internal life cannot
be accepted. In consciousness, psychic acts are very distinct from one another, and observation
itself necessarily conducts to unity in psychology. But the agent of this unity is outside of
consciousness, which knows only the result of the work done in the unknown laboratory beneath it.
Suddenly a new thought springs into being. Ultimate analysis of psychic processes shows that the
unconscious is the theater of the most important mental phenomena. The conscious is always
conditional upon the unconscious."

Creighton says: "Our conscious life is the sum of these entrances and exits. Behind the scenes, as
we infer, there lies a vast reserve which we call 'the unconscious,' finding a name for it by the
simple device of prefixing the negative article. The basis of all that lies behind the scene is the mere
negative of consciousness."

Maudsley says: "The process of reasoning adds nothing to knowledge (in the reasoner). It only
displays what was there before, and brings to conscious possession what before was unconscious."
And again: "Mind can do its work without knowing it. Consciousness is the light that lightens the
process, not the agent that accomplishes it."

Walstein says: "It is through the sub-conscious self that Shakespeare must have perceived, without
effort, great truths which are hidden from the conscious mind of the student; that Phidias painted
marble and bronze; that Raphael painted Madonnas, and Beethoven composed symphonies."

Ribot says: "The mind receives from experience certain data, and elaborates them unconsciously by
laws peculiar to itself, and the result merges into consciousness." Page 80
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Newman says: "When the unaccustomed causes surprise, we do not perceive the thing and then
feel the surprise; but surprise comes first, and then we search out the cause; so the theory must
have acted on the unconscious mind to create the feeling, before being perceived in

A writer in an English magazine says: "Of what transcendent importance is the fact that the
unconscious part of the mind bears to the conscious part such a relation as the magic lantern bears
to the luminous disc which it projects; that the greater part of the intentional action, the whole
practical life of the vast majority of men, is an effect of events as remote from consciousness as the
motion of the planets."

Dr. Schofield says: "It is quite true that the range of the unconscious mind must necessarily remain
indefinite; none can say how high or low it may reach.... As to how far the unconscious powers of
life that, as has been said, can make eggs and feathers out of Indian corn, and milk and beef and
mutton out of grass, are to be considered within or beyond the lowest limits of unconscious mind,
we do not therefore here press. It is enough to establish the fact of its existence; to point out its
more important features; and to show that in all respects it is as worthy of being called mind as
that which works in consciousness. We therefore return to our first definition of Mind, as 'the sum
of psychic action in us, whether conscious or unconscious.'"

Hartmann calls our attention to a very important fact when he says: "The unconscious does not fall
ill, the unconscious does not grow weary, but all conscious mental activity becomes fatigued."

Kant says: "To have ideas and yet not be conscious of them--therein seems to lie a contradiction.
However, we may still be immediately aware of holding an idea, though we are not directly
conscious of it."

Maudsley says: "It may seem paradoxical to assert not merely that ideas may exist in the mind
without any consciousness of them, but that an idea, or a train of associated ideas, may be
quickened into action and actuate movements without itself being attended to. When an idea
disappears from consciousness it does not necessarily disappear entirely; it may remain latent
below the horizon of consciousness. Moreover it may produce an effect upon movement, or upon
other ideas, when thus active below the horizon of consciousness."

Liebnitz says: "It does not follow that because we do not perceive thought that it does not exist. It is
a great source of error to believe that there is no perception in the mind but that of which it is

Oliver Wendell Holmes says: "The more we examine the mechanism of thought the more we shall
see that anterior unconscious action of the mind that enters largely into all of its processes. People
who talk most do not always think most. I question whether persons who think most--that is who
have most conscious thought pass through their mind--necessarily do most mental work. Every new
idea planted in a real thinker's mind grows when he is least conscious of it."

Maudsley says: "It would go hard with mankind indeed, if they must act wittingly before they acted
at all. Men, without knowing why, follow a course for which good reasons exist. Nay, more. The Page 81
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practical instincts of mankind often work beneficially in actual contradiction to their professed

The same writer says: "The best thoughts of an author are the unwilled thoughts which surprise
himself; and the poet, under the influence of creative activity, is, so far as consciousness is
concerned, being dictated to."

A writer in an English magazine says: "When waiting on a pier for a steamer, I went on to the first,
which was the wrong one. I came back and waited, losing my boat, which was at another part of
the pier, on account of the unconscious assumption I had made, that this was the only place to wait
for the steamer. I saw a man enter a room, and leave by another door. Shortly after, I saw another
man exactly like him do the same. It was the same man; but I said it must be his twin brother, in the
unconscious assumption that there was no exit for the first man but by the way he came (that by

Maudsley says: "The firmest resolve or purpose sometimes vanishes issueless when it comes to the
brink of an act, while the true will, which determines perhaps a different act, springs up suddenly
out of the depths of the unconscious nature, surprising and overcoming the conscious."

Schofield says: "Our unconscious influence is the projection of our unconscious mind and
personality unconsciously over others. This acts unconsciously on their unconscious centers,
producing effects in character and conduct, recognized in consciousness. For instance, the entrance
of a good man into a room where foul language is used, will unconsciously modify and purify the
tone of the whole room. Our minds cast shadows of which we are as unconscious as those cast by
our bodies, but which affect for good or evil all who unconsciously pass within their range. This is a
matter of daily experience, and is common to all, though more noticeable with strong

Now we have given much time and space to the expressions of opinion of various Western writers
regarding this subject of there being a plane or planes of the mind outside of the field of
consciousness. We have given space to this valuable testimony, not alone because of its intrinsic
value and merit, but because we wished to impress upon the minds of our students that these
out-of-conscious planes of mind are now being recognized by the best authorities in the Western
world, although it has been only a few years back when the idea was laughed at as ridiculous, and
as a mere "dream of the Oriental teachers." Each writer quoted has brought out some interesting
and valuable point of the subject, and the student will find that his own experiences corroborate
the points cited by the several writers. In this way we think the matter will be made plainer, and
will become fixed in the mind of those who are studying this course of lessons.

But we must caution our students from hastily adopting the several theories of Western writers,
advanced during the past few years, regarding these out-of-conscious states. The trouble has been
that the Western writers dazzled by the view of the subconscious planes of mentation that
suddenly burst upon the Western thought, hastily adopted certain theories, which they felt would
account for all the phenomena known as "psychic," and which they thought would fully account for
all the problems of the subject. These writers while doing a most valuable work, which has helped Page 82
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thousands to form new ideas regarding the nature and workings of the mind, nevertheless did not
sufficiently explore the nature of the problem before them. A little study of the Oriental
philosophies might have saved them and their readers much confusion.

For instance, the majority of these writers hastily assumed that because there was an
out-of-conscious plane of mentation, therefore all the workings of the mind might be grouped
under the head of "conscious" and "sub-conscious," and that all the out-of-conscious phenomena
might be grouped under the head of "subconscious mind," "subjective mind," etc., ignoring the fact
that this class of mental phenomena embraced not only the highest but the lowest forms of
mentation In their newly found "mind" (which they called "subjective" or "sub-conscious"), they
placed the lowest traits and animal passions; insane impulses; delusions; bigotry; animal-like
intelligence, etc., etc., as well as the inspiration of the poet and musician, and the high spiritual
longings and feelings that one recognizes as having come from the higher regions of the soul.

This mistake was a natural one, and at first reading the Western world was taken by storm, and
accepted the new ideas and theories as Truth. But when reflection came, and analysis was applied
there arose a feeling of disappointment and dissatisfaction, and people began to feel that there
was something lacking. They intuitively recognized that their higher inspirations and intuitions
came from a different part of the mind than the lower emotions, passions, and other sub-conscious
feelings, and instincts.

A glance at the Oriental philosophies will give one the key to the problem at once. The Oriental
teachers have always held that the conscious mentation was but a small fraction of the entire
volume of thought, but they have always taught that just as there was a field of mentation below
consciousness, so was there a field of mentation above consciousness as much higher than Intellect
as the other was lower than it. The mere mention of this fact will prove a revelation to those who
have not heard it before, and who have become entangled with the several "dual-mind" theories of
the recent Western writers. The more one has read on this subject the more he will appreciate the
superiority of the Oriental theory over that of the Western writers. It is like the chemical which at
once clears the clouded liquid in the test-tube.

In our next lesson we shall go into this subject of the above-conscious planes, and the
below-conscious planes, bringing out the distinction clearly, and adding to what we have said on
the subject in previous books.

And all this is leading us toward the point where we may give you instruction regarding the training
and cultivation--the retraining and guidance of these out-of-conscious faculties. By retraining the
lower planes of mentation to their proper work, and by stimulating the higher ones, man may
"make himself over." mentally, and may acquire powers of which he but dreams now. This is why
we are leading you up to the understanding of this subject, step by step. We advise you to acquaint
yourself with each phase of the matter, that you may be able to apply the teachings and
instructions to follow in later lessons of the course.

Guide to Advanced Yoga Techniques

I recognize that my Self is greater than it seems--that above and below consciousness are planes of
mind--that just as there are lower planes of mind which belong to my past experience in ages past
and over which I must now assert my Mastery--so are there planes of mind into which I am
unfolding gradually, which will bring me wisdom, power, and joy. I Am Myself, in the midst of this
mental world--I am the Master of my Mind--I assert my control of its lower phases, and I demand of
its higher all that it has in store for me. Page 84
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In our last lesson we told you something about the operation of the mind outside of the field of
consciousness. In this lesson we will attempt to classify these out-of-consciousness planes, by
directing your attention to the several mental planes above and below the plane of consciousness.
As we stated in the last lesson, over 90 per cent of our mental operations are conducted outside of
the field of consciousness, so that the consideration of the planes is seen to be an important

Man is a Centre of Consciousness in the great One Life of the Universe. His soul has climbed a great
many steps before it reached its present position and stage of unfoldment. And it will pass through
many more steps until it is entirely free and delivered from the necessity of its swaddling clothes.

In his mental being man contains traces of all that has gone before--all the experiences of himself
and the great race movement of which he is a part. And, likewise, his mind contains faculties and
mental planes which have not as yet unfolded into consciousness, and of the existence of which he
is but imperfectly aware. All of these mental possessions, however, are useful and valuable to
him--even the lowest. The lowest may be used to advantage, under proper mastery, and are only
dangerous to the man who allows them to master him instead of serving him as they should,
considering his present stage of development.

In this consideration of the several mental planes we shall not confine ourselves to the technical
occult terms given to these several planes, but will place them in general groups and describe the
features and characteristics of each, rather than branch off into long explanations of the growth
and reason of the several planes, which would take us far away from the practical consideration of
the subject.

Beginning at the lowest point of the scale we see that man has a body. The body is composed of
minute cells of protoplasm. These cells are built up of countless molecules, atoms and particles of
matter--precisely the same matter that composes the rocks, trees, air, etc., around him. The Yogi
philosophy tells us that even the atoms of matter have life and an elementary manifestation of
mind, which causes them to group together according to the law of attraction, forming different
elements, combinations, etc. This law of attraction is a mental operation, and is the first evidence
of mental choice, action and response. Below this is Prana or Force, which, strictly speaking, is also
a manifestation of mind, although for convenience we designate it as a separate manifestation of
the Absolute.

And therefore we find that this law of attraction between the atoms and particles of matter is a
mental action, and that it belongs to man's mental kingdom, because he has a body and this mental
action is continually going on in his body. So therefore this is the lowest mental plane to be
considered in the make-up of the man. This plane is, of course, far sunken beneath the plane of
consciousness, and is scarcely identified with the personality of the man at all, but rather belongs to
the life of the whole, manifest in the rock as well as in the man.

But after these atoms have been grouped by the law of attraction and have formed molecules of
matter, they are taken possession of by a higher mental activity and built up into cells by the Page 85
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mental action of the plant. The life impulse of the plant begins by drawing to it certain particles of
inorganic matter--chemical elements--and then building them into a single cell. Oh, mystery of the
cell! The intellect of man is unable to duplicate this wonderful process. The Mind Principle on the
Vegetative Plane, however, knows exactly how to go to work to select and draw to itself just the
elements needed to build up the single cell. Then taking up its abode in that cell--using it as a basis
of operations, it proceeds to duplicate its previous performance, and so cell after cell is added, by
the simple reproductive process of division and subdivision--the primitive and elemental sex
process--until the mighty plant is built up. From the humblest vegetable organism up to the
greatest oak the process is the same.

And it does not stop there. The body of man is also built up in just this way, and he has this
vegetative mind also within him, below the plane of consciousness, of course. To many this thought
of a vegetative mind may be somewhat startling. But let us remember that every part of our body
has been built up from the vegetable cell. The unborn child starts with the coalition of two cells.
These cells begin to build up the new body for the occupancy of the child--that is, the mind
principle in the cells directs the work, of course--drawing upon the body of the mother for
nourishment and supplies. The nourishment in the mother's blood, which supplies the material for
the building up of the child's body, is obtained by the mother eating and assimilating the vegetable
cells of plants, directly or indirectly. If she eats fruit, nuts, vegetables, etc., she obtains the
nourishment of the plant life directly--if she eats meat she obtains it indirectly, for the animal from
which the meat was taken built up the meat from vegetables. There is no two ways about this--all
nourishment of the animal and human kingdom is obtained from the vegetable kingdom, directly or

And the cell action in the child is identical with the cell action in the plant. Cells constantly
reproducing themselves and building themselves up into bodily organs, parts, etc., under the
direction and guidance of the mind principle. The child grows in this way until the hour of birth. It is
born, and then the process is but slightly changed. The child begins to take nourishment either from
the mother's milk or from the milk of the cow, or other forms of food. And as it grows larger it
partakes of many different varieties of food. But always it obtains building material from the cell life
of the plants.

And this great building up process is intelligent, purposeful, to a wonderful degree. Man with his
boasted intellect cannot explain the real "thingness" of the process. A leading scientist who placed
the egg of a small lizard under microscopical examination and then watched it slowly develop has
said that it seemed as if some hand was tracing the outlines of the tiny vertebrae, and then building
up around it. Think for a moment of the development of the germ within the egg of the
humming-bird, or the ant, or the gnat, or the eagle. Every second a change may be noticed. The
germ cell draws to itself nourishment from the other part of the egg, and then it grows and
reproduces another cell. Then both cells divide--then subdivide until there are millions and millions
and millions of cells. And all the while the building up process continues, and the bird or insect
assumes shape and form, until at last the work is accomplished and the young bird emerges from
the egg. Page 86
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And the work thus commenced continues until the death of the animal. For there is a constant
using-up and breaking-down of cell and tissue, which the organism must replace. And so the
vegetative mind of the plant, or insect, or animal, or man, is constantly at work building up new
cells from the food, throwing out worn-out and used-up material from the system. Not only this,
but it attends to the circulation of the blood in order that the materials for the building up may be
carried to all parts of the system. It attends to the digestion and assimilation of the food--the
wonderful work of the organs of the body. It attends to the healing of wounds, the fight against
disease, the care of the physical body. And all this out of the plane of consciousness--in the infant
man the animal world, the vegetable kingdom--ever at work, untiring, intelligent, wonderful. And
this plane of mind is in man as well as in the plant, and it does its work without aid from the
conscious part of man, although man may interfere with it by adverse conscious thought, which
seems to paralyze its efforts. Mental Healing is merely the restoring of normal conditions, so that
this part of the body may do its work without the hindrance of adverse conscious thought.

On this plane of the mind is found all of the vital functions and operations. The work is done
out-of-consciousness, and the consciousness is aware of this part of the mind only when it makes
demands upon the conscious for food, etc. On this plane also resides the elementary instinct that
tends toward reproduction and sexual activity. The demand of this part of the mind is always
"increase and multiply," and according to the stage of growth of the individual is the mandate
carried out, as we shall see presently. The elementary impulses and desires that we find rising into
the field of consciousness come from this plane of the mind. Hunger, thirst and the reproductive
desires are its messages to the higher parts of the mind. And these messages are natural and free
from the abuses and prostitution often observed attached to them by the intellect of man in
connection with his unrestrained animal impulses. Gluttony and unnatural lust arise not from the
primitive demand of this plane of the mind--for the lower animals even are free from them to a
great extent--but it is reserved for man to so prostitute these primitive natural tendencies, in order
to gratify unnatural and artificial appetites, which serve to frustrate nature rather than to aid her.

As Life advanced in the scale and animal forms appeared on the scene new planes of mind were
unfolded, in accordance to the necessity of the living forms. The animal was compelled to hunt for
his food--to prey upon other forms, and to avoid being preyed upon by others. He was compelled
to struggle for the unfoldment of latent powers of his mind that would give him means to play his
part in the scheme of life. He was compelled to do certain things in order to live and reproduce his
kind. And he demanded not in vain. For there came to him slowly an unfolding knowledge of the
things necessary for the requirements of his life. We call this Instinct. But, pray remember, by
Instinct we do not mean the still higher something that is really rudimentary Intellect that we
notice in the higher animals. We are speaking now of the unreasoning instinct observed in the
lower animals, and to a certain degree in man. This Instinctive plane of mentality causes the bird to
build its nest before its eggs are laid, which instructs the animal mother how to care for its young
when born, and after birth; which teaches the bee to construct its cell and to store up its honey.
These and countless other things in animal life, and in the higher form of plant life, are
manifestations of Instinct--that great plane of the mind. In fact, the greater part of the life of the
animal is instinctive although the higher forms of animals have developed something like Page 87
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rudimentary Intellect or Reason, which enables them to meet new conditions where Intellect alone
fails them.

And man has this plane of mind within him, below consciousness. In fact the lower forms of human
life manifest but little Intellect, and live almost altogether according to their Instinctive impulses
and desires.

Every man has this Instinctive mental region within him and from it are constantly arising impulses
and desires to perplex and annoy him, as well as to serve him occasionally. The whole secret
consists in whether the man has Mastery of his lower self or not.

From this plane of the mind arise the hereditary impulses coming down from generations of
ancestors, reaching back to the cavemen, and still further back into the animal kingdom. A queer
storehouse is this. Animal instincts--passions, appetites, desires, feelings, sensations, emotions,
etc., are there. Hate, envy, jealousy, revenge, the lust of the animal seeking the gratification of his
sexual impulses, etc., etc., are there, and are constantly intruding upon our attention until we have
asserted our mastery. And often the failure to assert this mastery comes from an ignorance of the
nature of the desire, etc. We have been taught that these thoughts were "bad" without being told
why, and we have feared them and thought them the promptings of an impure nature, or a
depraved mind, etc. This is all wrong. These things are not "bad" of themselves--they came to us
honestly--they are our heritage from the past. They belong to the animal part of our nature, and
were necessary to the animal in his stage of development. We have the whole menagerie within us,
but that does not mean that we should turn the beasts loose upon ourselves or others. It was
necessary for the animal to be fierce, full of fight, passionate, regardless of the rights of others, etc.,
but we have outgrown that stage of development, and it is ignoble for us to return to it, or to allow
it to master us.

This lesson is not intended as a discourse upon Ethics or morals. We do not intend going into a
discussion of the details of "Right and Wrong," for we have touched upon that phase of the subject
in other works. But we feel justified in calling your attention to the fact that the human mind
intuitively recognizes the "Rightness" of the living up to that which comes to us from the highest
parts of the mind--the highest product of our unfoldment. And it likewise intuitively recognizes the
"Wrongness" of the falling back into that which belongs to the lower stages of our mentality--to the
animal part of us, that is our heritage from the past and that which has gone before.

While we may be puzzled about many details of morals and ethics and may not be able to "explain"
why we consider certain things right or wrong, we still intuitively feel that the highest "Right" of
which we are capable is the acting out of that which is coming to us from the highest pole of our
mental being, and that the lowest "Wrong" consists in doing that which carries us back to the life of
the lower animals, in so far as mentality is concerned. Not because there is anything absolutely
"Wrong" in the mental processes and consequent of the animals in themselves--they are all right
and perfectly natural in the animals--but we intuitively recognize that for us to fall back to the
animal stage is a "going backward" in the scale of evolution. We intuitively shrink at an exhibition of
brutality and animality on the part of a man or woman. We may not know just why, but a little Page 88
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reflection will show us that it is a sinking in the evolutionary scale, against which the spiritual part
of us revolts and protests.

But this must not be construed to mean that the advanced soul looks upon the animal world with
disgust or horror. On the contrary, there is nowhere to be found a higher respect for animal life and
being than among the Yogi and other advanced souls. They delight in watching the animals filling
their places in life--playing out their parts in the divine scheme of life. Their animal passions and
desires are actions viewed sympathetically and lovingly by the advanced soul, and nothing "Wrong"
or disgusting is seen there. And even the coarseness and brutality of the savage races are so
regarded by these advanced souls. They see everything as natural according to the grade and
degree of development of these people.

It is only when these advanced souls view the degeneracies of "civilized" life that they feel sorrow
and pain. For here they see instances of devolution instead of evolution--degeneration instead of
regeneration and advancement. And not only do they know this to be the fact, but the degenerate
specimens of mankind themselves feel and know it. Compare the expression of the animal or
savage going through their natural life actions and performances. See how free and natural are
their expressions, how utterly apart are evidences of wrong doing. They have not as yet found out
the fatal secret of Good and Evil--they have not as yet eaten the forbidden fruit. But, on the
contrary, look into the faces of the degenerates and fallen souls of our civilized life. See the furtive
glance and the self-consciousness of "Wrong" evident in every face. And this consciousness of
"Wrong" bears heavily upon these people--it is heavier than the punishments heaped upon them
That nameless something called "conscience" may be smothered for a while, but sooner or later it
comes to light and demands the pound of flesh from its victim.

And yet you will say that it seems hard to think that the same thing can be Right in one person and
Wrong in another. This seems like a hard saying and a dangerous doctrine, but it is the Truth. And
man instinctively recognizes it. He does not expect the same sense of moral responsibility in a
young child, or in a savage, that he does in a mature, developed, civilized man. He may restrain the
child and the savage, for self-protection and the welfare of all, but he realizes the distinction, or at
least should do so. And not only is this true, but as man advances in the scale he casts off many
ideas of "Wrong" that he once held, having outgrown the old ideas and having grown into new
conceptions. And the tendency is always upward and onward. The tendency is constantly from
Force and Restraint toward Love and Freedom. The ideal condition would be one in which there
were no laws and no necessity for them--a condition in which men had ceased to do wrong because
they had outgrown the desire rather than from fear or restraint or force. And while this condition
as yet seems afar off, there is constantly going on an unfoldment of higher planes and faculties of
the mind, which when once fully manifest in the race will work a complete revolution in ethics and
laws and government--and for the better, of course. In the meantime Mankind moves along, doing
the best it can, making a steady though slow progress.

There is another plane of the mind which is often called the "Instinct," but which is but a part of the
plane of the Intellect, although its operations are largely below the field of consciousness. We
allude to what may be called the "Habit Mind," in order to distinguish it from the Instinctive Plane.
The difference is this: The Instinctive plane of mind is made up of the ordinary operations of the Page 89
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mind below the plane of the Intellect, and yet above the plane of the Vegetative mind--and also of
the acquired experiences of the race, which have been transmitted by heredity, etc. But the "Habit
Mind" contains only that which has been placed there by the person himself and which he has
acquired by experience, habit, and observation, repeated so often until the mind knows it so well
that it is carried below the field of consciousness and becomes "second nature," and akin to

The text books upon psychology are filled with illustrations and examples of the habit phase or
plane of the mental operations, and we do not think it necessary to repeat instances of the same
kind here. Everyone is familiar with the fact that tasks which at first are learned only by
considerable work and time soon become fixed in some part of the mind until their repetition calls
for little or no exercise of conscious mental operation. In fact, some writers have claimed that no
one really "learns" how to perform a task until he can perform it almost automatically. The pupil
who in the early stages of piano playing finds it most difficult to control and manage his fingers,
after a time is able to forget all about his fingering and devote his entire attention to the pages of
his music, and after this he is able to apparently let his fingers play the entire piece of music by
themselves without a thought on his part. The best performers have told us that in the moments of
their highest efforts they are aware that the out-of-conscious portion of their mind is doing the
work for them, and they are practically standing aside and witnessing the work being done. So true
is this that in some cases it is related that if the performer's conscious mind attempts to take up the
work the quality is impaired and the musician and the audience notice the difference.

The same thing is true in the case of the woman learning to operate the sewing machine. It is quite
difficult at first, but gradually it grows to "run itself." Those who have mastered the typewriter have
had the same experience. At first each letter had to be picked out with care and effort. After a
gradual improvement the operator is enabled to devote her entire attention to the "copy" and let
the fingers pick out the keys for themselves. Many operators learn rapid typewriting by so training
the habit mind that it picks out the letter-keys by reason of their position, the letters being covered
over in order to force the mind to adapt itself to the new requirements. A similar state of affairs
exists wherever men or women have to use tools of any kind. The tool soon is recognized by the
mind and used as if it were a part of the body, and no more conscious thought is devoted to the
manipulation than we devote to the operation of walking, which, by the way, is learned by the child
only by the expenditure of time and labor. It is astonishing how many things we do "automatically"
in this way. Writers have called our attention to the fact that the average man cannot consciously
inform you how he puts on his coat in the morning--which arm goes in first, how the coat is held,
etc. But the habit mind knows--knows very well. Let the student stand up and put on his coat in the
regular way, following the leadings of the habit mind. Then, after removing it, let him attempt to
put it on by inserting the other arm first, for instance. He will be surprised to find out how awkward
it will be for him, and how completely he has been depending upon the habit mind. And tomorrow
morning let him find out which shoe the habit mind has been putting on him first and then try to
reverse the order and notice how flurried and disturbed the habit mind will become, and how
frantically it will signal to the conscious mind: "Something wrong up there!" Or try to button on
your collar, reversing the order in which the tabs are placed over the button--right before left, or
left before right, as the case may be, and notice the involuntary protest. Or, try to reverse the Page 90
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customary habit in walking and attempt to swing your right arm with the movement of your right
leg, and so on, and you will find it will require the exercise of great will power. Or, try to "change
hands" and use your knife and fork. But we must stop giving examples and illustrations. Their
number is countless.

Not only does the habit mind attend to physical actions, etc., but it also takes a hand in our mental
operations. We soon acquire the habit of ceasing to consciously consider certain things, and the
habit mind takes the matter for granted, and thereafter we will think automatically on those
particular questions, unless we are shaken out of the habit by a rude jolt from the mind of someone
else, or from the presentation of some conflicting idea occasioned by our own experience or
reasoning processes. And the habit mind hates to be disturbed and compelled to revise its ideas. It
fights against it, and rebels, and the result is that many of us are slaves to old outgrown ideas that
we realize are false and untrue, but which we find that we "cannot exactly get rid of." In our future
lessons we will give methods to get rid of these old outgrown ideas.

There are other planes of mind which have to do with the phenomena known as "psychic," by
which is meant the phases of psychic phenomena known as clairvoyance, psychometry, telepathy,
etc., but we shall not consider them in this lesson, for they belong to another part of the general
subject. We have spoken of them in a general way in our "Fourteen Lessons in Yogi Philosophy,

And now we come to the plane of mind known to us as Intellect or the Reasoning Faculties.
Webster defines the word Intellect as follows: The part or faculty of the human soul by which it
knows, as distinguished from the power to feel and to will; the thinking faculty; the understanding.
The same authority defines the word Reason as follows: "The faculty or capacity of the human mind
by which it is distinguished from the intelligence of the inferior animals." We shall not attempt to
go into a consideration of the conscious Intellect, for to do so we would be compelled to take up
the space of the remaining lessons of the course, and besides, the student may find extended
information on this subject in any of the text books on psychology. Instead we will consider other
faculties and planes of mind which the said text books pass by rapidly, or perhaps deny. And one of
these planes is that of Unconscious Reasoning, or Intellect. To many this term will seem
paradoxical, but students of the unconscious will understand just what is meant.

Reasoning is not necessarily conscious in its operations, in fact, a greater part of the reasoning
processes are performed below or above the conscious field. In our last lesson we have given a
number of examples proving this fact, but a few more remarks may not be out of place, nor without
interest to the student.

In our last lesson you will see many instances stated in which the sub-conscious field of the Intellect
worked out problems, and then after a time handed to the conscious reason the solution of the
matter. This has occurred to many of us, if not indeed to all of us. Who has not endeavored to solve
a problem or question of some sort and after "giving it up" has had it suddenly answered and
flashed into consciousness when least expected. The experience is common to the race. While the
majority of us have noticed these things, we have regarded them as exceptional and out of the
general rule. Not so, however, with students of the mental planes. The latter have recognized these Page 91
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planes of reason, and have availed themselves of their knowledge by setting these unconscious
faculties to work for them. In our next lesson we will give directions to our students regarding this
accomplishment, which may prove of the greatest importance to those who will take the trouble to
practice the directions given. It is a plan that is known to the majority of men who have "done
things" in the world, the majority of them, however, having discovered the plan for themselves as
the result of a need or demand upon the inner powers of mind.

The plane of mind immediately above that of Intellect is that known as Intuition. Intuition is defined
by Webster as follows: "Direct apprehension or cognition; immediate knowledge, as in perception
or consciousness, involving no reasoning process; quick or ready insight or apprehension." It is
difficult to explain just what is meant by Intuition, except to those who have experienced it--and
these people do not need the explanation. Intuition is just as real a mental faculty as is Intellect--or,
to be more exact, is just as much a collection of mental faculties. Intuition is above the field of
consciousness, and its messages are passed downward, though its processes are hidden. The race is
gradually unfolding into the plane of Intuition, and the race will some day pass into full
consciousness on that plane. In the meantime it gets but flashes and glimpses from the hidden
region. Many of the best things we have come from that region. Art, music, the love of the
beautiful and good poetry, the higher form of love, spiritual insight to a certain degree, intuitive
perception of truth, etc., etc., come from this region. These things are not reasoned out by the
intellect, but seem to spring full born from some unknown region of the mind.

In this wonderful region dwells Genius. Many, if not all of the great writers, poets, musicians, artists
and other examples of genius have felt that their power came to them from some higher source.
Many have thought that it emanated from some being kindly to them, who would inspire them
with power and wisdom. Some transcendent power seemed to have been called into operation,
and the worker would feel that his product or creation was not his handiwork, but that of some
outside intelligence. The Greeks recognized this something in man, and called it man's "Daemon."
Plutarch in his discourse on the daemon that guided Socrates speaks of the vision of Timarchus,
who, in the case of Trophonius, saw spirits which were partly attached to human bodies, and partly
over and above them, shining luminously over their heads. He was informed by the oracle that the
part of the spirit which was immersed in the body was called the "soul," but that the outer and
unimmersed portion was called the "daemon." The oracle also informed him that every man had
his daemon, whom he is bound to obey; those who implicitly follow that guidance are the prophetic
souls, the favorites of the gods. Goethe also spoke of the daemon as a power higher than the will,
and which inspired certain natures with miraculous energy.

We may smile at these conceptions, but they are really very close to the truth. The higher regions
of the mind, while belonging to the individual, and a part of himself, are so far above his ordinary
consciousness that to all intents and purposes messages from them are as orders from another and
higher soul. But still the voice is that of the "I," speaking through its sheaths as best it is able.

This power belongs to every one of us, although it manifests only in the degree that we are able to
respond to it. It grows by faith and confidence, and closes itself up, and withdraws into its recesses
when we doubt it and would question its veracity and reality. What we call "originality" comes from Page 92
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this region. The Intuitive faculties pass on to the conscious mind some perception of truth higher
than the Intellect has been able to work out for itself, and lo! it is called the work of genius.

The advanced occultist knows that in the higher regions of the mind are locked up intuitive
perceptions of all truth, and that he who can gain access to these regions will know everything
intuitively, and as a matter of clear sight, without reasoning or explanation. The race has not as yet
reached the heights of Intuition--it is just beginning to climb the foothills. But it is moving in the
right direction. It will be well for us if we will open ourselves to the higher inner guidance, and be
willing to be "led by the Spirit." This is a far different thing from being led by outside intelligence,
which may, or may not, be qualified to lead. But the Spirit within each of us has our interests at
heart and is desirous of our best good, and is not only ready but willing to take us by the hand and
lead us on. The Higher Self is doing the best it can for our development and welfare, but is
hampered by the confining sheaths. And alas, many of us glory in these sheaths and consider them
the highest part of ourselves. Do not be afraid to let the light of the Spirit pierce through these
confining sheaths and dissolve them. The Intuition, however, is not the Spirit, but is one of its
channels of communication to us. There are other and still higher planes of mind, but the Intuition
is the one next in the line of unfoldment, and we should open ourselves to its influence and
welcome its unfoldment.

Above the plane of Intuition is that of the Cosmic Knowing, upon which we will find the
consciousness of the Oneness of All. We have spoken of this plane in our lesson on the Unfoldment
of Consciousness. When one is able to "conscious" on this plane--this exalted plane of mind--he is
able to see fully, plainly and completely that there is One Great Life underlying all the countless
forms and shapes of manifestation. He is able to see that separateness is only "the working fiction
of the Universe." He is able to see that each Ego is but a Centre of Consciousness in the great Ocean
of Life--all in pursuance of the Divine Plan, and that he is moving forward toward higher and higher
planes of manifestation, power and individuality, in order to take a greater and grander part in the
Universal work and plans.

The Cosmic Knowing in its fulness has come to but few of the race, but many have had glimpses,
more or less clear, of its transcendent wonder, and others are on the borderland of this plane. The
race is unfolding gradually, slowly but surely, and those who have had this wonderful experience
are preparing others for a like experience. The seed is being sown, and the harvest will come later.
This and other phases of the higher forms of consciousness are before the race. The individuals who
read this lesson are perhaps nearer to it than they think; their interest in the lessons is an indication
of that hunger of the soul which is a prophecy of the satisfaction of the cry for spiritual bread. The
Law of Life heeds these cries for aid and nourishment and responds accordingly, but along the lines
of the highest wisdom and according to the real requirements of the individual.

Let us close this lesson with a quotation from "Light on the Path," which bears directly upon the
concluding thought. Read it carefully and let it sink down deep into your inner consciousness, and
you will feel the thrill of joy that comes to him who is nearing the goal.

"Look for the flower to bloom in the silence that follows the storm; not till then. Page 93
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"It shall grow, it will shoot up, it will make branches and leaves, and form buds while the storm
lasts. But not until the entire personality of the man is dissolved and melted--not until it is held by
the divine fragment which has created it, as a mere subject for grave experiment and
experience--not until the whole nature has yielded and become subject unto its higher self, can the
bloom open. Then will come a calm such as comes in a tropical country after the heavy rain, when
nature works so swiftly that one may see her action. Such a calm will come to the harassed spirit.
And in the deep silence the mysterious event will occur which will prove that the way has been
found. Call it by whatever name you will. It is a voice that speaks where there is none to speak, it is
a messenger that comes--a messenger without form or substance--or it is the flower of the soul
that has opened. It cannot be described by any metaphor. But it can be felt after, looked for, and
desired, even among the raging of the storm. The silence may last a moment of time, or it may last
a thousand years. But it will end. Yet you will carry its strength with you. Again and again the battle
must be fought and won. It is only for an interval that nature can be still."


The concluding three lessons of this series will be devoted to a practical course of instruction in the
development of the hidden planes of the mind, or rather, in the development of the power of the
individual to master the same and make use of them in his life. He will be taught to master the
lower principles, not only in the surmounting of them, but in the transmitting of the elemental
forces toward his higher ends. Power may be obtained from this part of the mind, under the
direction of the Will. And the student will be told how to set the unconscious Intellect to work for
him. And he will be told how to develop and train the Will. We have now passed the line between
the theoretical and the practical phases of the subject, and from now on it will be a case of train,
develop, cultivate and apply. Knowing what lies back of it all, the student is now prepared to
receive the instructions which he might have misused before. Peace be with thee all.


Guide to Advanced Yoga Techniques

In the Ninth Lesson we called your attention to the fact that Reasoning was not necessarily
conscious in its operations, and that, in fact, a large part of the rational processes of the mind are
performed below or above the field of consciousness. And in the Eighth Lesson we gave you a
number of examples illustrating this fact. We also gave you a number of cases in which the
sub-conscious field of the Intellect worked out problems, and then after a time passed on to the
conscious field of the Intellect the solution of the matter. In this lesson we purpose instructing you
in the methods by which this part of the Intellect may be set to work for you. Many have stumbled
upon bits of this truth for themselves, and, in fact, the majority of successful men and men who
have attained eminence in any walk of life have made more or less use of this truth, although they
seldom understand the reason of it.

Very few Western writers have recognized the work of this plane of the mind. They have given us
full and ingenious theories and examples of the workings of the Instinctive Mind, and in some cases
they have touched upon the workings and operations of the Intuitional planes, but in nearly every
case they have treated the Intellect as something entirely confined to the Conscious plane of
mentation. In this they have missed some of the most interesting and valuable manifestations of
sub-conscious mentation.

In this lesson we will take up this particular phase of mentation, and trust to be able to point out
the way to use it to the best advantage, giving some simple instructions that have been given by
the Hindu teachers to their students for centuries past, such instructions of course, being modified
by us to conform to the requirements and necessities of the Western student of today.

We have taken the liberty of bestowing a new title upon this phase of mentation--we have thought
it well to call it "Sub-consciousing." The word "Sub," of course means "under; below;" and the word
"Consciousing" is a favorite term employed by Prof. Elmer Gates, and means receiving impressions
from the mind. In a general way, "Sub-consciousing," as used in this lesson, may be understood to
mean "using the subconscious mind, under orders of the conscious mind."

By referring to our Eighth Lesson, we see mention made of the case of the man who indulged in
"unconscious rumination," which happened to him when he read books presenting new points of
view essentially opposed to his previous opinion. You will note that after days, weeks, or months,
he found that to his great astonishment the old opinions were entirely rearranged, and new ones
lodged there.

On the same page you will see mentioned the case of Sir William Hamilton, who discovered an
important law of mathematics while walking with his wife. In this case he had been previously
thinking of the missing link in his chain of reasoning, and the problem was worked out for him by
the sub-conscious plane of his Intellect.

On the same page, and the one following, is found the case of Dr. Thompson, who gives an
interesting account of the workings of this part of his mind, which caused him at times to
experience a feeling of the uselessness of all voluntary effort, coupled with a feeling that the matter
was working itself clear in his mind. He tells us that at times he seemed to be merely a passive Page 95
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instrument in the hands of some person other than himself, who compelled him to wait until the
work was performed for him by some hidden region of the mind. When the subconscious part of
the mind had completed its work, it would flash the message to his conscious mind, and he would
begin to write.

On page 76 mention is also made of the great French chemist Berthelot, who relates that some of
his best conceptions have flashed upon him as from the clear sky. In fact, the Eighth Lesson is
largely made up of examples of this kind, and we ask the student to re-read the same, in order to
refresh his mind with the truth of the workings of the sub-conscious mentality.

But you will notice in nearly all the cases mentioned, that those who related instances of the help
of the sub-conscious mind had merely stumbled upon the fact that there was a part of the mind
below consciousness that could and would work out problems for one, if it could somehow be set
in operation. And these people trusted to luck to start that part of the mind in operation. Or rather,
they would saturate their conscious mind with a mass of material, like stuffing the stomach with
food, and then bid the subconscious mind assort, separate, arrange and digest the mental food, just
as does the stomach and digestive apparatus digest the natural food--outside of the realm of
consciousness or volition. In none of the cases mentioned was the subconscious mind directed
specially to perform its wonderful work. It was simply hoped that it might digest the mental
material with which it had been stuffed--in pure self defense. But there is a much better way, and
we intend to tell you about it. The Hindu Yogis, or rather those who instruct their pupils in "Raja
Yoga," give their students directions whereby they may direct their sub-conscious minds to perform
mental tasks for them, just as one may direct another to perform a task. They teach them the
methods whereby, after having accumulated the necessary materials, they may bid the
sub-conscious mentality to sort it out, rearrange, analyze, and build up from it some bit of desired
knowledge. More than this, they instruct their pupils to direct and order the sub-conscious
mentality to search out and report to them certain information to be found only within the mind
itself--some question of philosophy or metaphysics. And when such art has been acquired, the
student or Yogi rests assured that the desired result will be forthcoming in due time, and
consequently dismisses the matter from his conscious mind, and busies himself with other matters,
knowing that day and night, incessantly, the sub-consciousing process is going on, and that the
sub-conscious mind is actively at work collecting the information, or working out the problem.

You will see at once the great superiority of this method over the old "hit-or-miss,"
"hope-it-will-work" plan pursued by those who have stumbled upon bits of the truth.

The Yogi teacher begins by impressing upon his students the fact that the mind is capable of
extending outward toward an object, material or mental, and by examining it by methods inherent
in itself, extracting knowledge regarding the object named. This is not a startling truth, because it is
so common, everyone employing it more or less every day. But the process by which the knowledge
is extracted is most wonderful, and really is performed below the plane of consciousness, the work
of the conscious mind being chiefly concerned in holding the Attention upon the object. We have
spoken of the importance of Attention in previous lessons, which it will be well for you to re-read,
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When the student is fully impressed with the details of the process of Attention, and the
subsequent unfoldment of knowledge, the Yogi proceeds to inform him that there are other means
of obtaining knowledge about an object, by the employment of which the Attention may be firmly
directed toward the object and then afterwards held there unconsciously--that is, a portion of the
Attention, or a sub-conscious phase of mentation, which will hold the sub-conscious mind firmly
upon the work until accomplished, leaving the conscious Attention and mentality free to employ
itself with other things.

The Yogis teach the students that this new form of Attention is far more intense and powerful than
is the conscious Attention, for it cannot be disturbed or shaken, or distracted from its object, and
that it will work away at its task for days, months, years, or a lifetime if necessary, according to the
difficulty of the task, and in fact carries its work over from one life to another, unless recalled by
the Will. They teach the student that in everyone's life there is going on a greater or less degree of
this sub-conscious work, carried on in obedience to a strong desire for knowledge manifested in
some former life, and bearing fruit only in the present existence. Many important discoveries have
been made in obedience to this law. But it is not of this phase of the matter that we wish to speak
in this lesson.

The Yogi theory is that the sub-conscious intellectual faculty may be set to work under the direction
of orders given by the Will. All of you know how the sub-conscious mentality will take up an order
of the Will, or a strong wish, that the person be awakened at a certain hour in order to catch a
train. Or, in the same way how the remembrance of a certain engagement at, say, four o'clock, will
flash into the mind when the hands of the clock approach the stated hour. Nearly every one can
recall instances of this sort in his own experience.

But the Yogis go much further than this. They claim that any and all faculties of the mind may be
"set going," or working on any problem, if ordered thereto by the Will. In fact, the Yogis, and their
advanced students have mastered this art to such a surprising extent that they find it unnecessary
to do the drudgery of thinking in the conscious field, and prefer to relegate such mental work to the
sub-conscious, reserving their conscious work for the consideration of digested information and
thought presented to them by the sub-conscious mind.

Their directions to their students cover a great deal of ground, and extend over a long period of
time, and many of the directions are quite complicated and full of detail. But we think that we can
give our students an abbreviated and condensed idea in a few pages of the lesson. And the
remaining lessons of the course will also throw additional light on the subject of sub-conscious
mental action, in connection with other subjects.

The Yogi takes the student when the latter is much bothered by a consideration of some knotty and
perplexing philosophical subject. He bids the student relax every muscle,--take the tension from
every nerve--throw aside all mental strain, and then wait a few moments. Then the student is
instructed to grasp the subject which he has had before his mind firmly and fixedly before his
mental vision, by means of concentration. Then he is instructed to pass it on to the sub-conscious
mentality by an effort of the Will, which effort is aided by forming a mental picture of the subject as
a material substance, or bundle of thought, which is being bodily lifted up and dropped down a Page 97
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mental hatch-way, or trap-door, in which it sinks from sight. The student is then instructed to say to
the sub-conscious mentality: "I wish this subject thoroughly analyzed, arranged, classified (and
whatever else is desired) and then the results handed back to me. Attend to this."

The student is taught to speak to the sub-conscious mentality just as if it were a separate entity of
being, which had been employed to do the work. He is also taught that confident expectation is an
important part of the process, and that the degree of success depends upon the degree of this
confident expectation.

In obstinate cases, the student is taught to use the Imagination freely, until he is able to make a
mental image or picture of the sub-conscious mind doing what is required of it. This process clears
away a mental path for the feet of the sub-conscious mind, which it will choose thereafter, as it
prefers to follow the line of least resistance.

Of course much depends upon practice--practice makes perfect, you know, in everything else, and
sub-consciousing is no exception to the rule.

The student gradually acquires a proficiency in the art of sub-consciousing, and thereafter devotes
his time to acquiring new facts for mental digestion, rather than bestowing it upon the mechanical
act of thinking.

But a very important point to be remembered is that the Will-power back of the transferred
thought-material, which Will-power is the cause of the subconscious action, depends very greatly
upon the attention and interest given to the acquired material. This mass of thought-material
which is to be digested, and threshed out by the sub-conscious mind, must be well saturated with
interest and attention, in order to obtain the best results. In fact interest and attention are such
important aids to the Will, that any consideration of the development and acquirement of
Will-power is practically a development and acquirement of attention and interest. The student is
referred to previous lessons in this course in which the importance of interest and attention is
explained and described.

In acquiring the mass of thought-material which is to be passed on to the sub-conscious digestion,
one must concentrate a great degree of interest and attention upon each item of thought-material
gathered up. The gathering of this thought-material is a matter of the greatest importance, and
must not be lightly passed by. One cannot hastily gather together all sorts of thought-material, and
then expect the subconscious mind to do its work properly--it will not, in fact, and the student
proceeding upon any such erroneous supposition is doomed to disappointment.

The proper way to proceed, is to take up each bit of thought-material in turn, and examine it with
the greatest possible interest, and consequently the greatest attention, and then after having fairly
saturated it with this interested attention, place it with the pile of material which, after a while, is
to be passed on to the sub-conscious mentality. Then take up the next bit of material, and after
giving it similar treatment, pass it along to the pile also. Then after a while when you have gathered
up the main facts of the case, proceed to consider the mass as a whole, with interest and attention,
giving it as it were a "general treatment." Then drop it down the trap-door into the sub-conscious Page 98
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mind, with a strong command, "Attend to this thought-material," coupled with a strong expectant
belief that your order will be obeyed.

The idea underlying this treatment of the thought-material with interest and attention is that by so
doing a strong "Mental Image" is created, which may be easily handled by the sub-conscious mind.
Remember that you are passing on "thoughts" for the sub-consciousness to act upon, and that the
more tangible and real these thoughts are, the better can they be handled. Therefore any plan that
will build these thoughts up into "real" things is the plan to pursue. And attention and interest
produce just this result.

If we may be pardoned for using a homely and commonplace illustration we would say that the
idea may be grasped by the illustration of boiling an egg, whereby the fluid "white" and "yolk"
becomes solid and real. Also the use of a shaving brush by a man, by which the thin lather is
gradually worked up into a rich, thick, creamy mass, is an illustration. Again, the churning of butter
is a favorite illustration of the Hindus, who thus call the attention of their students to the fact that
thought-material if worked upon with attention and interest become "thought-forms" that may be
handled by the mind just as the hands handle a material object. We ask you to think of these
illustrations, for when you once grasp the idea that we wish to convey to you, you will have the
secret of great thinking powers within your grasp.

And this power of sub-consciousing is not confined alone to the consideration of philosophical
questions. On the contrary it is applicable to every field of human thought, and may be properly
employed in any and all of them. It is useful in solving the problems of every-day life and work, as
well as to the higher flights of the human mind. And we wish every one of our students to realize
that in this simple lesson we are giving them the key to a great mental power.

To realize just what we are offering to you, we would remind you of the old fairy tales of all races,
in which there is to be found one or more tales telling of some poor cobbler, or tailor, or carpenter,
as the case may be, who had by his good deeds, gained favor with the "brownies" or good fairies,
who would come each night when the man and his family were asleep, and proceed to complete
the work that the artisan had laid out for the morrow. The pieces of leather would be made into
shoes; the cloth would be sewed into garments; the wood would be joined, and nailed together
into boxes, chairs, benches and what not. But in each case the rough materials were prepared by
the artisan himself during the day.

Well, that is just what we are trying to introduce to you. A clan of mental brownies, loving and
kindly disposed toward you, who are anxious and willing to help you in your work. All you have to
do is to give them the proper materials, and tell then what you want done, and they will do the
rest. But these mental brownies are a part of your own mentality, remember, and no alien and
foreign entities, as some have imagined.

A number of people who have accidentally discovered this power of the sub-conscious mind to
work out problems, and to render other valuable service to its owner, have been led to suppose
that the aid really came from some other entity or intelligence. Some have thought that the
messages came from friends in the spirit land, and others have believed that some high Page 99
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intelligence--God or his angels--was working in their behalf. Without discussing spirit
communication, or Divine messages, in both of which we believe (with certain provisional
reservations) we feel justified in saying that the majority of cases of this kind may be referred to the
sub-conscious workings of one's own mentality.

Each of us has "a friend" in our own mind--a score of them in fact, who delight in performing
services for us, if we will but allow them to do so. Not only have we a Higher Self to whom we may
turn for comfort and aid in times of deep distress and necessity, but we have these invisible mental
workers on the sub-conscious plane, who are very willing and glad to perform much of our mental
work for us, if we will but give them the material in proper shape.

It is very difficult to impart specific directions for obtaining these results, as each case must depend
to a great extent upon the peculiar circumstances surrounding it. But we may say that the main
thing needed is to "lick into shape" the material, and then pass it on to the sub-conscious mind in
the manner spoken of a few moments ago. Let us run over a few cases wherein this principle may
be applied.

Let us suppose that you are confronted with a problem consisting of an uncertainty as to which of
two or more courses to adopt in some affair of life. Each course seems to have advantages and
disadvantages, and you seem unable to pass upon the matter clearly and intelligently. The more
you try the more perplexed and worried do you become. Your mind seems to tire of the matter,
and manifests a state which may be called "mental nausea." This state will be apparent to any one
who has had much "thinking" to do. The average person, however, persists in going over the
matter, notwithstanding the tired condition of the mind, and its evident distaste for a further
consideration of the subject. They will keep on forcing it back to the mind for consideration, and
even at night time will keep thrashing away at the subject. Now this course is absurd. The mind
recognizes that the work should be done by another part of itself--its digestive region, in fact--and
naturally rebels at the finishing-up machinery being employed in work unsuited for it.

According to the Sub-consciousing plan, the best thing for the man to do would be for him first to
calm and quiet his mind. Then he should arrange the main features of the problem, together with
the minor details in their proper places. Then he should pass them slowly before him in review,
giving a strong interest and attention to each fact and detail, as it passes before him, but without
the slightest attempt to form a decision, or come to a conclusion. Then, having given the matter an
interested and attentive review, let him Will that it pass on to his sub-conscious mind, forming the
mental image of dropping it through the trap-door, and at the same time giving the command of
the Will, "Attend to this for me!"

Then dismiss the matter from your conscious mind, by an effort of command of the Will. If you find
it difficult to do this, you may soon acquire the mastery by a frequent assertion, "I have dismissed
this matter from my conscious mind, and my sub-conscious mind will attend to it for me." Then,
endeavor to create a mental feeling of perfect trust and confidence in the matter, and avoid all
worry or anxiety about it. This may be somewhat difficult at the first trial, but will become a natural
feeling after you have gained the confidence arising from successful results in several cases. The
matter is one of practice, and, like anything else that is new, must be acquired by perseverance and Page 100
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patience. It is well worth the time and trouble, and once acquired will be regarded as something in
the nature of a treasure discovered in an unexpected place. The sense of tranquillity and
content--of calm and confidence--that comes to one who has practiced this plan, will of itself be
worth all the trouble, not to speak of the main result. To one who has acquired this method, the old
worries, frettings, and general "stewed up" feeling, will seem like a relic of barbarism. The new way
opens up a world of new feelings and content.

In some cases the matter will be worked out by the sub-conscious mind in a very short time, and in
fact we have known cases in which the answer would be flashed back almost instantly, almost like
an inspiration. But in the majority of cases more or less time is required. The sub-conscious mind
works very rapidly, but it takes time to arrange the thought-material properly, and to shape it into
the desired forms. In the majority of cases it is well to let the matter rest until the next day--a fact
that gives us a clue to the old advice to "sleep over" an important proposition, before passing a
final decision.

If the matter does not present itself the following day, bring it up again before the conscious mind
for review. You will find that it has shaped itself up considerably, and is assuming definite form and
clearness. But right here--and this is important--do not make the mistake of again dissecting it, and
meddling with it, and trying to arrange it with your conscious mind. But, instead, give it attention
and interest in its new form, and then pass it back again to the sub-conscious mind for further
work. You will find an improvement each time you examine it. But, right here another word of
caution. Do not make the mistake of yielding to the impatience of the beginner, and keep on
repeatedly bringing up the matter to see what is being done. Give it time to have the work done on
it. Do not be like the boy who planted seeds, and who each day would pull them up to see whether
they had sprouted, and how much.

Sooner or later, the sub-conscious mind will, of its own choice, lift up the matter and present it to
you in its finished shape for the consideration of the conscious mind. The sub-conscious mind does
not insist that you shall adopt its views, or accept its work, but merely hands out to you the result
of its sorting, classifying and arranging. The choice and will still remains yours, but you will often
find that there is seen to be one plan or path that stands out clearly from the others, and you will
very likely adopt that one. The secret is that the sub-conscious mind with its wonderful patience
and care has analyzed the matter, and has separated things before apparently connected. It has
also found resemblances and has combined things heretofore considered opposed to each other. In
short it has done for you all that you could have done with the expenditure of great work and time,
and done it well. And then it lays the matter before you for your consideration and verdict.

Its whole work seems to have been in the nature of assorting, dissecting, analyzing, and arranging
the evidence, and then presenting it before you in a clear, systematic shape. It does not attempt to
exercise the judicial prerogative or function, but seems to recognize that its work ceases with the
presentation of the edited evidence, and that of the conscious mind begins at the same point.

Now, do not confuse this work with that of the Intuition, which is a very different mental phase or
plane. This sub-conscious working, just mentioned, plays an entirely different part. It is a good Page 101
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servant, and does not try to be more. The Intuition, on the contrary, is more like a higher friend--a
friend at court, as it were, who gives us warnings and advice.

In our directions we have told you how to make use of this part of the mind, consciously and
knowingly, so as to obtain the best results, and to get rid of worry and anxiety attendant upon
unsettled questions. But, in fact, every one of us makes more or less use of this part of the mind
unconsciously, and not realizing the important part it plays in our mental life. We are perplexed
about a matter and keep it "on our minds" until we are forced to lay it aside by reason of some
other demand, or when we sink to sleep. Often to our surprise we will find that when we next think
of it the matter has somehow cleared up and straightened itself out, and we seem to have learned
something about it that we did not know before. We do not understand it, and are apt to dismiss it
as "just one of those things." In these lessons we are attempting to explain some of "those things,"
and to enable you to use them consciously and understandingly, instead of by chance, instinctively,
and clumsily. We are teaching you Mastery of the Mind.

Now to apply the rule to another case. Suppose you wish to gather together all the information that
you possess relating to a certain subject. In the first place it is certain that you know a very great
deal more about any subject than you think you do. Stored away in the various recesses of the
mind, or memory if you prefer that term, are stray bits of information and knowledge concerning
almost any subject. But these bits of information are not associated with each other. You have
never attempted to think attentively upon the particular question before you, and the facts are not
correlated in the mind. It is just as if you had so many hundred pounds of anything scattered
throughout the space of a large warehouse, a tiny bit here, and a tiny bit there, mixed up with
thousands of other things.

You may prove this by sitting down some time and letting your thoughts run along the line of some
particular subject, and you will find emerging into the field of consciousness all sorts of information
that you had apparently forgotten, and each fitting itself into its proper place. Every person has had
experiences of this kind. But the work of gathering together the scattered scraps of knowledge is
more or less tedious for the conscious mind, and the sub-conscious mind will do the work equally
well with the wear and tear on the attention. In fact, it is the sub-conscious mind that always does
the work, even when you think it is the conscious mind. All the conscious mind does is to hold the
attention firmly upon the object before it, and then let the sub-consciousness pass the material
before it. But this holding the attention is tiresome work, and it is not necessary for it to expend its
energies upon the details of the task, for the work may be done in an easier and simpler way.

The best way is to follow a plan similar to the one mentioned a few pages back. That is, to fix the
interested attention firmly upon the question before you, until you manage to get a clear, vivid
impression of just what you want answered. Then pass the whole matter into the sub-conscious
mind with the command "Attend to this," and then leave it. Throw the whole matter off of your
mind, and let the sub-conscious work go on. If possible let the matter run along until the next
morning and then take it up for consideration, when, if you have proceeded properly you will find
the matter worked out, arranged in logical sequence, so that your conscious attention will be able
to clearly review the string of facts, examples, illustrations, experiences, etc., relating to the matter
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Now, many of you will say that you would like this plan to work in cases in which you have not the
time to sleep over it. In such cases we will say that it is possible to cultivate a rapid method of
sub-consciousing, and in fact many business men and men of affairs have stumbled upon a similar
plan, driven to the discovery by necessity. They will give a quick, comprehensive, strong flash of
attention upon the subject, getting right to the heart of it, and then will let it rest in the
sub-conscious mind for a moment or two, killing a minute or two of time n "preliminary
conversation," until the first flash of answer comes to them. After the first flash, and taking hold of
the first loose end of the subject that presents itself to them, they will unwind a string of
information and "talk" about the subject that will surprise even themselves. Many lawyers have
acquired this knowledge, and are what is known as "resourceful." Such men are often confronted
with questions of conditions utterly unsuspected by them a moment before. Practice has taught
them the folly of fear and loss of confidence at such moments, and has also impressed upon them
the truth that something within them will come to the rescue. So, presenting a confident air, they
will manage to say a few platitudes or commonplaces, while the sub-conscious mind is most rapidly
gathering its materials for the answer. In a moment an opening thought "flashes upon" the man,
and as he continues idea after idea passes before his conscious and eager attention, sometimes so
rapidly that it is almost impossible to utter them and lo! the danger is over, and a brilliant success is
often snatched from the jaws of an apparent failure and defeat. In such cases the mental demand
upon the sub-conscious mind is not voiced in words, but is the result of a strong mental need.
However, if one gives a quick verbal command "Attend to this," the result will be heightened.

We have known of cases of men prominent in the world's affairs who made a practice of smoking a
cigar during important business interviews, not because they particularly cared for tobacco, but
because they had learned to appreciate the value of a moment's time for the mind to "gather itself
together," as one man expressed it. A question would be asked, or a proposition advanced
suddenly, demanding an immediate answer. Under the watchful eyes of the other party the
questioned party tried not to show by his expression any indication of searching for an answer, for
obvious reasons. So, instead, he would take a long puff at the cigar, then a slow attentive look at
the ashes on its tip, and then another moment consumed in flicking the ash into the receptacle, and
then came the answer, slowly, "Well, as to that--" or some other words of that kind, prefacing the
real answer which had been rapidly framed by the sub-conscious mind in time to be uttered in its
proper place. The few moments of time gained had been sufficient for the sub-conscious mind to
gather up its materials, and the matter to be shaped properly, without any appearance of
hesitation on the part of the answerer. All of this required practice, of course, but the principle may
be seen through it all and in every similar case. The point is that the man, in such cases, sets some
hidden part of his mind to work for him, and when he begins to speak the matter is at least roughly
"licked into shape for him."

Our students will understand, of course, that this is not advice to smoke cigars during interviews of
importance, but is merely given to illustrate the principle. We have known other men to twirl a lead
pencil in their fingers in a lazy sort of fashion, and then drop it at the important moment. But we
must cease giving examples of this kind, lest we be accused of giving instructions in worldly
wisdom, instead of teaching the use of the mind. The impressive pause of the teacher, before
answering his pupil's question, is also an example of the workings of this law. One often says "stop, Page 103
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let me think a moment," and during his pause he does not really consciously think at all, but stares
ahead in a dreamy fashion, while his sub-conscious mind does the work for him, although he little
suspects the nature of the operation. One has but to look around him to realize the importance and
frequent application of this truth.

And not only may the sub-conscious mind be used in the directions indicated on preceding pages,
but in nearly every perplexity and problem of life may it be called upon for help. These little
sub-conscious brownies are ever at our disposal, and seem to be happy to be of service to us.

And so far from being apt to get us in a position of false dependence, it is calculated to make us
self-confident--for we are calling upon a part of ourselves, not upon some outside intelligence. If
those people who never feel satisfied unless they are getting "advice" from others would only
cultivate the acquaintance of this little "home adviser" within them, they would lose that
dependent attitude and frame of mind, and would grow self-confident and fearless. Just imagine
the confidence of one who feels that he has within him a source of knowledge equal to that of the
majority of those with whom he is likely to come in contact, and he feels less afraid to face them,
and look them fearlessly in the eyes. He feels that his "mind" is not confined to the little field of
consciousness, but is an area infinitely greater, containing a mass of information undreamed of.
Everything that the man has inherited, or brought with him from past lives--everything that he has
read, heard or seen, or experienced in this life, is hidden away there in some quarter of that great
sub-conscious mind, and, if he will but give the command, the "essence" of all that knowledge is
his. The details may not be presented to his consciousness (often it is not, for very good occult
reasons) by the result, or essence of the knowledge will pass before his attention, with sufficient
examples and illustrations, or arguments to enable him to make out "a good case" for himself.

In the next lesson we will call your attention to other features and qualities of this great field of
mind, showing you how you can put it to work, and Master it. Remember, always, the "I" is the
Master. And its Mastery must always be remembered and asserted over all phases and planes of
the mind. Do not be a slave to the sub-conscious, but be its MASTER.


I have within me a great area of Mind that is under my command, and subject to my Mastery. This
Mind is friendly to me, and is glad to do my bidding, and obey my orders. It will work for me when I
ask it, and is constant, untiring, and faithful. Knowing this I am no longer afraid, ignorant or
uninformed. The "I" is master of it all, and is asserting its authority. "I" am master over Body, Mind,
Consciousness, and Sub-consciousness. I am "I"--a Centre of Power, Strength, and Knowledge. I am
"I"--and "I" am Spirit, a fragment from the Divine Flame. Page 104
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In our last lesson (the Tenth Lesson) we called your attention to the wonderful work of the
sub-conscious regions of mentation in the direction of the performance of Intellectual work. Great
as are the possibilities of this field of mentation in the direction named, they are equaled by the
possibilities of building up character by similar methods.

Everyone realizes that one may change his character by a strenuous course of repression and
training, and nearly all who read these lines have modified their characteristics somewhat by
similar methods. But it is only of late years that the general public have become aware that
Character might be modified, changed, and sometimes completely altered by means of an
intelligent use of the sub-conscious faculties of the mind.

The word "Character" is derived from ancient terms meaning "to mark," "to engrave," etc., and
some authorities inform us that the term originally arose from the word used by the Babylonian
brickmakers to designate the trade mark impressed by them upon their bricks, each maker having
his own mark. This is interesting, in view of the recent theories regarding the cultivation of
characteristics which may be found in the current Western works on psychology. But these theories
are not new to the Yogi teachers of the East, who have employed similar methods for centuries
past in training their students and pupils. The Yogis have long taught that a man's character was,
practically, the crude character-stuff possessed by him at his birth, modified and shaped by outside
influences in the case of the ordinary man, and by deliberate self-training and shaping by the wise
man. Their pupils are examined regarding their characteristics, and then directed to repress the
undesirable traits, and to cultivate the desirable ones.

The Yogi practice of Character Building is based upon the knowledge of the wonderful powers of
the sub-conscious plane of the mind. The pupil is not required to pursue strenuous methods of
repression or cultivation, but, on the contrary, is taught that such methods are opposed to nature's
plans, and that the best way is to imitate nature and to gradually unfold the desired characteristics
by means of focusing the will-power and attention upon them. The weeding out of undesirable
characteristics is accomplished by the pupil cultivating the characteristics directly opposed to the
undesirable ones. For instance, if the pupil desires to overcome Fear, he is not instructed to
concentrate on Fear with the idea of killing it out, but, instead, is taught to mentally deny that he
has Fear, and then to concentrate his attention upon the ideal of Courage. When Courage is
developed, Fear is found to have faded away. The positive always overpowers the negative.

In the word "ideal" is found the secret of the Yogi method of sub-conscious character building. The
teachings are to the effect that "ideals" may be built up by the bestowal of attention upon them.
The student is given the example of a rose bush. He is taught that the plant will grow and flourish in
the measure that care and attention is bestowed upon it and vice versa. He is taught that the ideal
of some desired characteristic is a mental rosebush, and that by careful attention it will grow and
put forth leaves and flowers. He is then given some minor mental trait to develop, and is taught to
dwell upon it in thought--to exercise his imagination and to mentally "see" himself attaining the
desired quality. He is given mantrams or affirmation to repeat, for the purpose of giving him a
mental center around which to build an ideal. There is a mighty power in words, used in this way, Page 105
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providing that the user always thinks of the meaning of the words, and makes a mental picture of
the quality expressed by them, instead of merely repeating them parrot fashion.

The Yogi student is trained gradually, until he acquires the power of conscious direction of the
sub-conscious mind in the building up process, which power comes to anyone--Oriental or
Occidental--who will take the trouble to practice. In fact, nearly everyone possesses and actively
uses this power, although he may not be aware of it. One's character is largely the result of the
quality of thoughts held in the mind, and of the mental pictures or ideals entertained by the
person. The man who constantly sees and thinks of himself as unsuccessful and down-trodden is
very apt to grow ideals of thought forms of these things until his whole nature is dominated by
them, and his every act works toward the objectification of the thoughts. On the contrary, the man
who makes an ideal of success and accomplishment finds that his whole mental nature seems to
work toward that result--the objectification of the ideal. And so it is with every other ideal. The
person who builds up a mental ideal of Jealousy will be very apt to objectify the same, and to
unconsciously create condition that will give his Jealousy food upon which to feed. But this
particular phase of the subject, properly belongs to our next lesson. This Eleventh Lesson is
designed to point out the way by which people may mould their characters in any way they
desire--supplanting undesirable characteristics by desirable ones, and developing desirable ideals
into active characteristics. The mind is plastic to him who knows the secret of its manipulation.

The average person recognizes his strong and weak points of character, but is very apt to regard
them as fixed and unalterable, or practically so. He thinks that he "is just as the Lord made him,"
and that is the end of it. He fails to recognize that his character is being unconsciously modified
every day by association with others, whose suggestions are being absorbed and acted upon. And
he fails to see that he is moulding his own character by taking interest in certain things, and
allowing his mind to dwell upon them. He does not realize that he himself is really the maker of
himself, from the raw and crude material given him at his birth. He makes himself negatively or
positively. Negatively, if he allows himself to be moulded by the thoughts and ideals of others, and
positively, if he moulds himself. Everyone is doing one or the other--perhaps both. The weak man is
the one who allows himself to be made by others, and the strong man is the one who takes the
building process in his own hands.

The process of Character-building is so delightfully simple that its importance is apt to be
overlooked by the majority of persons who are made acquainted with it. It is only by actual practice
and the experiencing of results that its wonderful possibilities are borne home to one.

The Yogi student is early taught the lesson of the power and importance of character building by
some strong practical example. For instance, the student is found to have certain tastes of appetite,
such as a like for certain things, and a corresponding dislike for others. The Yogi teacher instructs
the student in the direction of cultivating a desire and taste for the disliked thing, and a dislike for
the liked thing. He teaches the student to fix his mind on the two things, but in the direction of
imagining that he likes the one thing and dislikes the other. The student is taught to make a mental
picture of the desired conditions, and to say, for instance, "I loathe candy--I dislike even the sight of
it," and, on the other hand, "I crave tart things--I revel in the taste of them," etc., etc., at the same
time trying to reproduce the taste of sweet things accompanied with a loathing, and a taste of tart Page 106
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things, accompanied with a feeling of delight. After a bit the student finds that his tastes are
actually changing in accordance with his thoughts, and in the end they have completely changed
places. The truth of the theory is then borne home to the student, and he never forgets the lesson.

In order to reassure readers who might object to having the student left in this condition of
reversed tastes, we may add that the Yogi teachers then teach him to get rid of the idea of the
disliked thing, and teach him to cultivate a liking for all wholesome things, their theory being that
the dislike of certain wholesome eatables has been caused by some suggestion in childhood, or by
some prenatal impression, as wholesome eatables are made attractive to the taste by Nature. The
idea of all this training, however, is not the cultivation of taste, but practice in mental training, and
the bringing home to the student the truth of the fact that his nature is plastic to his Ego, and that it
may be moulded at will, by concentration and intelligent practice. The reader of this lesson may
experiment upon himself along the lines of the elementary Yogi practice as above mentioned, if he
so desires. He will find it possible to entirely change his dislike for certain food, etc., by the methods
mentioned above. He may likewise acquire a liking for heretofore distasteful tasks and duties,
which he finds it necessary to perform.

The principle underlying the whole Yogi theory of Character Building by the sub-conscious Intellect,
is that the Ego is Master of the mind, and that the mind is plastic to the commands of the Ego. The
Ego or "I" of the individual is the one real, permanent, changeless principle of the individual, and
the mind, like the body, is constantly changing, moving, growing, and dying. Just as the body may
be developed and moulded by intelligent exercises, so may the mind be developed and shaped by
the Ego if intelligent methods are followed.

The majority of people consider that Character is a fixed something, belonging to a man, that
cannot be altered or changed. And yet they show by their everyday actions that at heart they do
not believe this to be a fact, for they endeavor to change and mould the characters of those around
them, by word of advice, counsel, praising or condemnation, etc.

It is not necessary to go into the matter of the consideration of the causes of character in this
lesson. We will content ourselves by saying that these causes may be summed up, roughly, as
follows: (1) Result of experiences in past lives; (2) Heredity; (3) Environment; (4) Suggestion from
others; and (5) Auto-suggestion. But no matter how one's character has been formed, it may be
modified, moulded, changed, and improved by the methods set forth in this lesson, which methods
are similar to what is called by Western writers, "Auto-suggestion."

The underlying idea of Auto-suggestion is the "willing" of the individual that the changes take place
in his mind, the willing being aided by intelligent and tried methods of creating the new ideal or
thought-form. The first requisite for the changed condition must be "desire" for the change. Unless
one really desires that the change take place, he is unable to bring his Will to bear on the task.
There is a very close connection between Desire and Will. Will is not usually brought to bear upon
anything unless it is inspired by Desire. Some people connect the word Desire with the lower
inclinations, but it is equally applicable to the higher. If one fights off a low inclination or Desire, it is
because he is possessed of a higher inclination or Desire. Many Desires are really compromises
between two or more conflicting Desires--a sort of average Desire, as it were. Page 107
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Unless one desires to change his character he will not make any move toward it. And in proportion
to the strength of the desire, so will be the amount of will-power that is put in the task. The first
thing for one to do in character building is to "want to do it." And if he finds that the "want" is not
sufficiently strong to enable him to manifest the perseverance and effort necessary to bring it to a
successful conclusion, then he should deliberately proceed to "build up the desire."

Desire may be built up by allowing the mind to dwell upon the subject until a desire is created. This
rule works both ways, as many people have found out to their sorrow and misery. Not only may
one build up a commendable desire in this way, but he may also build up a reprehensible one. A
little thought will show you the truth of this statement. A young man has no desire to indulge in the
excesses of a "fast" life. But after a while he hears, or reads something about others leading that
sort of life, and he begins to allow his mind to dwell upon the subject, turning it around and
examining it mentally, and going over it in his imagination. After a time he begins to find a desire
gradually sending forth roots and branches, and if he continues to water the thing in his
imagination, before long he will find within himself a blossoming inclination, which will try to insist
upon expression in action. There is a great truth behind the words of the poet:

"Vice is a monster of so frightful mien, That to be hated needs but to be seen. Yet seen too oft,
familiar with her face, We first endure, then pity, and then embrace."

And the follies and crimes of many a man have been due to the growing of desire within his mind,
through this plan of planting the seed, and then carefully watering and tending to it--this cultivation
of the growing desire. We have thought it well to give this word of warning because it will throw
light upon many things that may have perplexed you, and because it may serve to call your
attention to certain growing weeds of the mind that you have been nourishing.

But remember, always, that the force that leads downward may be transmuted and made to lead
upward. It is just as easy to plant and grow wholesome desires as the other kind. If you are
conscious of certain defects and deficiencies in your character (and who is not?) and yet find
yourself not possessed of a strong enough desire to make the changes necessary, then you should
commence by planting the desire seed and allowing it to grow by giving it constant care and
attention. You should picture to yourself the advantages of acquiring the desirable traits of
character of which you have thought. You should frequently go over and over them in your mind,
imaging yourself in imagination as possessing them. You will then find that the growing desire will
make headway and that you will gradually begin to "want to" possess that trait of character more
and more. And when you begin to "want to" hard enough, you will find arising in your
consciousness a feeling of the possession of sufficient Will-power to carry it through. Will follows
the Desire. Cultivate a Desire and you will find back of it the Will to carry it through. Under the
pressure of a very strong Desire men have accomplished feats akin to miracles.

If you find yourself in possession of desires that you feel are hurtful to you, you may rid yourself of
them by deliberately starving them to death, and at the same time growing opposite desires. By
refusing to think of the objectionable desires you refuse them the mental food upon which alone
they can thrive. Just as you starve a plant by refusing it nourishing soil and water, so may you starve
out an objectionable desire by refusing to give it mental food. Remember this, for it is most Page 108
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important. Refuse to allow the mind to dwell upon such desires, and resolutely turn aside the
attention, and, particularly, the imagination, from the subject. This may call for the manifestation of
a little will-power in the beginning, but it will become easier as you progress, and each victory will
give you renewed strength for the next fight. But do not temporize with the desire--do not
compromise with it--refuse to entertain the idea. In a fight of this kind each victory gives one added
strength, and each defeat weakens one.

And while you are refusing to entertain the objectionable guest you must be sure to grow a desire
of an entirely opposite nature--a desire directly opposed to the one you are starving to death.
Picture the opposite desire, and think of it often. Let your mind dwell upon it lovingly and let the
imagination help to build it up into form. Think of the advantages that will arise to you when you
fully possess it, and let the imagination picture you as in full possession of it, and acting out your
new part in life strong and vigorous in your new found power.

All this will gradually lead you to the point where you will "want to" possess this power. Then you
must be ready for the next step which is "Faith" or "Confident Expectation."

Now, faith or confident expectation is not made to order in most persons, and in such cases one
must acquire it gradually. Many of you who read these lines will have an understanding of the
subject that will give you this faith. But to those who lack it, we suggest that they practice on some
trivial phases of the mental make-up, some petty trait of character, in which the victory will be easy
and simple. From this stage they should work up to more difficult tasks, until at last they gain that
faith or confident expectation that comes from persevering practice.

The greater the degree of faith or confident expectation that one carries with him in this task of
character building, the greater will be his success. And this because of well established
psychological laws. Faith or confident expectation clears away the mental path and renders the
work easier, while doubt or lack of faith retards the work, and acts as obstacles and stumbling
blocks. Strong Desire, and Faith, or confident expectation are the first two steps. The third is

By Will-power we do not mean that strenuous, clenching-of-fist-and-frowning-brow thing that
many think of when they say "Will." Will is not manifested in this way. The true Will is called into
play by one realizing the "I" part of himself and speaking the word of command from that center of
power and strength. It is the voice of the "I." And it is needed in this work of character building.

So now you are ready for work, being possessed of (1) Strong Desire; (2) Faith or Confident
Expectation; and (3) Will-power. With such a triple-weapon nothing but Success is possible.

Then comes the actual work. The first thing to do is to lay the track for a new Character Habit.
"Habit?" you may ask in surprise. Yes, Habit! For that word gives the secret of the whole thing. Our
characters are made up of inherited or acquired habits. Think over this a little and you will see the
truth of it. You do certain things without a thought, because you have gotten into the habit of doing
them. You act in certain ways because you have established the habit. You are in the habit of being
truthful, honest, virtuous, because you have established the habit of being so. Do you doubt this?
Then look around you--or look within your own heart, and you will see that you have lost some of Page 109
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your old habits of action, and have acquired new ones. The building up of Character is the building
up of Habits. And the changing of Character is the changing of Habits. It will be well for you to settle
this fact in your own mind, for it will give you the secret of many things connected with the subject.

And, remember this, that Habit is almost entirely a matter of the sub-conscious mentality. It is true
that Habits originate in the conscious mind, but as they are established they sink down into the
depths of the sub-conscious mentality, and thereafter become "second nature," which, by the way,
is often more powerful than the original nature of the person. The Duke of Wellington said that
habit was as strong as ten natures, and he proceeded to drill habits into his army until they found it
natural to act in accordance with the habits pounded into them during the drills. Darwin relates an
interesting instance of the force of habit over the reason. He found that his habit of starting back at
the sudden approach of danger was so firmly established that no will-power could enable him to
keep his face pressed up against the cage of the cobra in the Zoological Gardens when the snake
struck at him, although he knew the glass was so thick that there could be no danger, and although
he exerted the full force of his will. But we venture to say that one could overcome even this
strongly ingrained habit, by gradually training the sub-conscious mentality and establishing a new
habit of thought and action.

It is not only during the actual process of "willing" the new habit that the work of making the new
mental path goes on. In fact, the Yogis believe that the principal part of the work goes on
sub-consciously between the intervals of commend, and that the real progress is made in that way,
just as the real work of solving the problem is performed sub-consciously, as related in our last
lesson. As an example, we may call your attention to some instances of the cultivation of physical
habits. A physical task learned in the evening is much easier to perform the following-morning than
it was the night before, and still easier the following Monday morning than it was on the Saturday
afternoon previous. The Germans have a saying that "we learn to skate in summer, and to swim in
winter," meaning that the impression passed on to the subconscious mentality deepens and
broadens during the interval of rest. The best plan is to make frequent, sharp impressions, and then
to allow reasonable periods of rest in order to give the sub-conscious mentality the opportunity to
do its work. By "sharp" impressions we mean impressions given under strong attention, as we have
mentioned in some of the earlier lessons of this series.

A writer has well said: "Sow an act, reap a habit; sow a habit, reap a character; sow a character,
reap a destiny," thus recognizing habit as the source of character. We recognize this truth in our
training of children, forming goods habits of character by constant repetition, by watchfulness, etc.
Habit acts as a motive when established, so that while we think we are acting without motive we
may be acting under the strong motive power of some well established habit. Herbert Spencer has
well said: "The habitually honest man does what is right, not consciously because he 'ought' but
with simple satisfaction; and is ill at ease till it is done." Some may object that this idea of Habit as a
basis of Character may do away with the idea of a developed moral conscientiousness, as for
instance, Josiah Royce who says: "The establishment of organized habit is never in itself enough to
ensure the growth of an enlightened moral conscientiousness" but to such we would say that one
must "want to" cultivate a high character before he will create the habits usual to the same, and
the "want to" is the sign of the "moral conscientiousness," rather than the habit. And the same is Page 110
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true of the "ought to" side of the subject. The "ought to" arises in the conscious mind in the
beginning, and inspires the cultivation of the habit, although the latter after a while becomes
automatic, a matter of the sub-conscious mentality, without any "ought to" attachment. It then
becomes a matter of "like to."

Thus we see that the moulding, modifying, changing, and building of Character is largely a matter of
the establishing of Habits. And what is the best way to establish Habits? becomes our next
question. The answer of the Yogi is: "Establish a Mental Image, and then build your Habit around
it." And in that sentence he has condensed a whole system.

Everything we see having a form is built around a mental image--either the mental image of some
man, some animal, or of the Absolute. This is the rule of the universe, and in the matter of
character-building we but follow a well established rule. When we wish to build a house, we first
think of "house" in a general way. Then we begin to think of "what kind" of a house. Then we go
into details. Then we consult an architect, and he makes us a plan, which plan is his mental image,
suggested by our mental image. Then, the plan once decided upon, we consult the builder, and at
last the house stands completed--an objectified Mental Image. And so it is with every created
thing--all manifestation of a Mental Image.

And so, when we wish to establish a trait of Character, we must form a clear, distinct Mental Image
of what we wish to be. This is an important step. Make your picture clear and distinct, and fasten it
in your mind. Then begin to build around it. Let your thoughts dwell upon the mental picture. Let
your imagination see yourself as possessed of the desired trait, and acting it out. Act it out in your
imagination, over and over again, as often as possible, persevering, and continuously, seeing
yourself manifesting the trait under a variety of circumstances and conditions. As you continue to
do this you will find that you will gradually begin to express the thought in action--to objectify the
subjective mental image. It will become "natural" for you to act more and more in accordance with
your mental image, until at last the new habit will become firmly fixed in your mind, and will
become your natural mode of action and expression.

This is no vague, visionary theory. It is a well known and proven psychological fact, and thousands
have worked marvelous changes in their character by its means.

Not only may one elevate his moral character in this way, but he may mould his "work-a-day" self
to better conform to the needs of his environment and occupation. If one lacks Perseverance, he
may attain it; if one is filled with Fear, he may supplant it with Fearlessness; if one lacks
Self-confidence, he may gain it. In fact, there is no trait that may not be developed in this way.
People have literally "made themselves over" by following this method of character-building. The
great trouble with the race has been that persons have not realized that they could do these things.
They have thought that they were doomed to remain just the creatures that they found themselves
to be. They did not realize that the work of creation was not ended, and that they had within
themselves a creative power adapted to the needs of their case. When man first realizes this truth,
and proves it by practice, he becomes another being. He finds himself superior to environment, and
training--he finds that he may ride over these things. He makes his own environment, and he trains
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In some of the larger schools in England and the United States, certain scholars who have
developed and manifested the ability to control themselves and their actions are placed on the roll
of a grade called the "Self-governed grade." Those in this grade act as if they had memorized the
following words of Herbert Spencer: "In the supremacy of self-control consists one of the
perfections of the ideal man. Not to be impulsive--not to be spurred hither and thither by each
desire--but to be self-restrained, self-balanced, governed by the just decision of the feelings in
council assembled * * * that it is which moral education strives to produce." And this is the desire
of the writer of this lesson--to place each student in the "Self-governed class."

We cannot attempt, in the short space of a single lesson, to map out a course of instruction in
Character Building adapted to the special needs of each individual. But we think that what we have
said on the subject should be sufficient to point out the method for each student to map out a
course for himself, following the general rules given above. As a help to the student, however, we
will give a brief course of instruction for the cultivation of one desirable trait of character. The
general plan of this course may be adapted to fit the requirements of any other case, if intelligence
is used by the student. The case we have selected is that of a student who has been suffering from
"a lack of Moral Courage--a lack of Self-Confidence--an inability to maintain my poise in the
presence of other people--an inability to say 'No!'--a feeling of Inferiority to those with whom I
come in contact." The brief outline of the course of practice given in this case is herewith given:

PRELIMINARY THOUGHT. You should fix firmly in your mind the fact that you are the Equal of any
and every man. You come from the same source. You are an expression of the same One Life. In the
eyes of the Absolute you are the equal of any man, even the highest in the land. Truth is "Things as
God sees them"--and in Truth you and the man are equal, and, at the last, One. All feelings of
Inferiority are illusions, errors, and lies, and have no existence in Truth. When in the company of
others remember this fact and realize that the Life Principle in you is talking to the Life Principle in
them. Let the Life Principle flow through you, and endeavor to forget your personal self. At the
same time, endeavor to see that same Life Principle, behind and beyond the personality of the
person in whose presence you are. He is by a personality hiding the Life Principle, just as you are.
Nothing more--nothing less! You are both One in Truth. Let the conscious of the "I" beam forth and
you will experience an uplift and sense of Courage, and the other will likewise feel it. You have
within you the Source of Courage, Moral and Physical, and you have naught to Fear--Fearlessness is
your Divine Heritage, avail yourself of it. You have Self-Conscience, for the Self is the "I" within you,
not the petty personality, and you must have confidence in that "I." Retreat within yourself until
you feel the presence of the "I," and then will you have a Self-Confidence that nothing can shake or
disturb. Once having attained the permanent consciousness of the "I," you will have poise. Once
having realized that you are a Center of Power, you will have no difficulty in saying "No!" when it is
right to do so. Once having realized your true nature--your Real Self--you will lose all sense of
Inferiority, and will know that you are a manifestation of the One Life and have behind you the
strength, power, and grandeur of the Cosmos.

Begin by realizing YOURSELF, and then proceed with the following methods of training the mind.

WORD IMAGES. It is difficult for the mind to build itself around an idea, unless that idea be
expressed in words. A word is the center of an idea, just as the idea is the center of the mental Page 112
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image, and the mental image the center of the growing mental habit. Therefore, the Yogis always
lay great stress upon the use of words in this way. In the particular case before us, we should
suggest the holding before you of a few words crystallizing the main thought. We suggest the
words "I Am"; Courage; Confidence; Poise; Firmness; Equality. Commit these words to memory, and
then endeavor to fix in your mind a clear conception of the meaning of each word, so that each
may stand for a Live Idea when you say it. Beware of parrot-like or phonographic repetition. Let
each word's meaning stand out clearly before you, so that when you repeat it you may feel its
meaning. Repeat the words over frequently, when opportunity presents itself, and you will soon
begin to notice that they act as a strong mental tonic upon you, producing a bracing, energizing
effect. And each time you repeat the words, understandingly, you have done something to clear
away the mental path over which you wish to travel.

PRACTICE. When you are at leisure, and are able to indulge in "day dreams" without injury to your
affairs of life, call your imagination into play and endeavor to picture yourself as being possessed of
the qualities indicated by the words named. Picture yourself under the most trying circumstances,
making use of the desired qualities, and manifesting them fully. Endeavor to picture yourself as
acting out your part well, and exhibiting the desired qualities. Do not be ashamed to indulge in
these day-dreams, for they are the prophecies of the things to follow, and you are but rehearsing
your part before the day of the performance. Practice makes perfect, and if you accustom yourself
to acting in a certain way in imagination, you will find it much easier to play your part when the real
performance occurs. This may seem childish to many of you, but if you have an actor among your
acquaintances, consult him about it, and you will find that he will heartily recommend it. He will tell
you what practice does for one in this direction, and how repeated practice and rehearsals may fix
a character so firmly in a man's mind that he may find it difficult to divest himself of it after a time.
Choose well the part you wish to play--the character you wish to be yours--and then after fixing it
well in your mind, practice, practice, practice. Keep your ideal constantly before you, and endeavor
to grow into it. And you will succeed, if you exercise patience and perseverance.

But, more than this. Do not confine your practice to mere private rehearsal. You need some "dress
rehearsals" as well--rehearsals in public. Therefore, after you get well started in your work, manage
to exercise your growing character-habits in your everyday life. Pick out the little cases first and "try
it on them."

You will find that you will be able to overcome conditions that formerly bothered you much. You
will become conscious of a growing strength and power coming from within, and you will recognize
that you are indeed a changed person. Let your thought express itself in action, whenever you get a
good chance. But do not try to force chances just to try your strength. Do not, for instance, try to
force people to ask for favors that you may say "No!" You will find plenty of genuine tests without
forcing any. Accustom yourself to looking people in the eye, and feeling the power that is back of
you, and within you. You will soon be able to see through their personality, and realize that it is just
one portion of the One Life gazing at another portion, and that therefore there is nothing to be
afraid of. A realization of your Real Self will enable you to maintain your poise under trying
circumstances, if you will but throw aside your false idea about your personality. Forget
yourself--your little personal self--for a while, and fix your mind on the Universal Self of which you Page 113
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are a part. All these things that have worried you are but incidents of the Personal Life, and are
seen to be illusions when viewed from the standpoint of the Universal Life.

Carry the Universal Life with you as much as possible into your everyday life. It belongs there as
much as anywhere, and will prove to be a tower of strength and refuge to you in the perplexing
situations of your busy life.

Remember always that the Ego is master of the mental states and habits, and that the Will is the
direct instrument of the Ego, and is always ready for its use. Let your soul be filled with the strong
Desire to cultivate those mental habits that will make you Strong. Nature's plan is to produce
Strong Individual expressions of herself, and she will be glad to give you her aid in becoming strong.
The man who wishes to strengthen himself will always find great forces back of him to aid him in
the work, for is he not carrying out one of Nature's pet plans, and one which she has been striving
for throughout the ages. Anything that tends to make you realize and express your Mastery, tends
to strengthen you, and places at your disposal Nature's aid. You may witness this in everyday
life--Nature seems to like strong individuals, and delights in pushing them ahead. By Mastery, we
mean mastery over your own lower nature, as well as over outside nature, of course. The "I" is
Master--forget it not, O student, and assert it constantly. Peace be with you.


I am the Master of my Mental Habits--I control my Character. I Will to be Strong, and summon the
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In this lesson we wish to touch upon a certain feature of sub-conscious mentation that has been
much dwelt upon by certain schools of western writers and students during the past twenty years,
but which has also been misunderstood, and, alas, too often misused, by some of those who have
been attracted to the subject. We allude to what has been called the "Power of Thought." While
this power is very real, and like any other of the forces of nature may be properly used and applied
in our every day life, still many students of the power of the Mind have misused it and have
stooped to practices worthy only of the followers of the schools of "Black Magic." We hear on all
sides of the use of "treatments" for selfish and often base ends, those following these practices
seeming to be in utter ignorance of the occult laws brought into operation, and the terrible reaction
inevitably falling to the lot of those practicing this negative form of mental influence. We have been
amazed at the prevailing ignorance concerning the nature and effects of this improper use of
mental force, and at the same time, at the common custom of such selfish, improper uses. This,
more particularly, when the true occultist knows that these things are not necessary, even to those
who seek "Success" by mental forces. There is a true method of the use of mental forces, as well as
an improper use, and we trust that in this lesson we may be able to bring the matter sharply and
clearly before the minds of our students.

In our first course (The Fourteen Lessons) in the several lessons entitled, respectively, "Thought
Dynamics," "Telepathy, etc.," and "Psychic Influence," we have given a general idea of the effect of
one mind upon other minds, and many other writers have called the attention of the Western
world to the same facts. There has been a general awakening of interest in this phase of the subject
among the Western people of late years, and many and wonderful are the theories that have been
advanced among the conflicting schools regarding the matter. But, notwithstanding the conflicting
theories, there is a general agreement upon the fundamental facts. They all agree that the mental
forces may be used to affect oneself and others, and many have started in to use these mental
forces for their own selfish ends and purposes, believing that they were fully justified in so doing,
and being unaware of the web of psychic causes and effects which they were weaving around them
by their practices.

Now, at the beginning, let us impress upon the minds of our students the fact that while it is
undoubtedly true that people who are unaware of the true sources of strength within them, may
be, and often are affected by mental force exerted by others, it is equally true that no one can be
adversely affected in this way providing he realizes the "I" within himself, which is the only Real
part of him, and which is an impregnable tower of strength against the assaults of others. There is
no cause for all of this fear that is being manifested by many Western students of thought-power,
who are in constant dread of being "treated" adversely by other people. The man or woman who
realizes the "I" within, may by the slightest exercise of the Will surround himself with a mental aura
which will repel adverse thought-waves emanating from the minds of others. Nay, more than
this--the habitual recognition of the "I," and a few moments' meditation upon it each day, will of
itself erect such an aura, and will charge this aura with a vitality that will turn back adverse thought,
and cause it to return to the source from which it came, where it will serve the good purpose of
bringing to the mistaken mind originating it, the conviction that such practices are hurtful and to be
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This realization of the "I," which we brought out in the first few lessons of the present series, is the
best and only real method of self-protection. This may be easily understood, when we remind you
that the whole phenomena of mental influencing belongs to the "illusion" side of existence--the
negative side--and that the Real and Positive side must of necessity be stronger. Nothing can affect
the Real in you--and the nearer you get to the Real, in realization and understanding, the stronger
do you become. This is the whole secret. Think it over.

But, there are comparatively few people who are able to rest firmly in the "I" consciousness all the
time and the others demand help while they are growing. To such, we would say "Creep as close
the Realization of the I, as possible, and rest your spiritual feet firmly upon the rock of the Real
Self." If you feel that people, circumstances, or things are influencing you unduly, stand up boldly,
and deny the influence. Say something like this, "I DENY the power or influence of persons,
circumstances, or things to adversely affect me. I ASSERT my Reality, Power and Dominion over
these things." These words may seem very simple, but when uttered with the consciousness of the
Truth underlying them, they become as a mighty force. You will understand, of course, that there is
no magic or virtue in the words themselves--that is, in the grouping of the letters forming the
words, or the sounds of the words--the virtue resting in the idea of which the words are the
expression. You will be surprised at the effect of this STATEMENT upon depressing, or adverse
influences surrounding you. If you--you who are reading these words now--feel yourself subject to
any adverse or depressing influences, will then stand up erect, throwing your shoulders back,
raising your head, and looking boldly and fearlessly ahead, and repeat these words firmly, and with
faith, you will feel the adverse influences disappearing. You will almost see the clouds falling back
from you. Try it now, before reading further, and you will become conscious of a new strength and

You are perfectly justified in thus denying adverse influence. You have a perfect right to drive back
threatening or depressing thought-clouds. You

have a perfect right to take your stand upon the Rock of Truth--your Real Self--and demand your
Freedom. These negative thoughts of the world in general, and of some people in particular, belong
to the dark side of life, and you have a right to demand freedom from them. You do not belong to
the same idea of life, and it is your privilege--yes, your duty--to repel them and bid them disappear
from your horizon. You are a Child of Light, and it is your right and duty to assert your freedom
from the things of darkness. You are merely asserting the Truth when you affirm your superiority
and dominion over these dark forces. And in the measure of your Recognition and Faith, will be the
power at your disposal. Faith and Recognition renders man a god. If we could but fully recognize
and realize just what we are, we could rise above this entire plane of negative, dark world of
thought. But we have become so blinded and stupefied with the race-thought of fear and
weakness, and so hypnotized with the suggestions of weakness that we hear on all sides of us, that
even the best of us find it hard to avoid occasionally sinking back into the lower depths of despair
and discouragement. But, let us remember this, brothers and sisters, that these periods of
"back-sliding" become less frequent, and last a shorter time, as we proceed. Bye-and-bye we shall
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Some may think that we are laying too much stress upon the negative side of the question, but we
feel that what we have said is timely, and much needed by many who read these lessons. There has
been so much said regarding this negative, adverse power of thought, that it is well that all should
be taught that it is in their power to rise above this thing-┬Čthat the weapon for its defeat is already
in their hand.

The most advanced student may occasionally forget that he is superior to the adverse influence of
the race-thought, and other clouds of thought influence that happen to be in his neighborhood.
When we think of how few there are who are sending forth the positive, hopeful, thought-waves,
and how many are sending forth continually the thoughts of discouragement, fear, and despair, it is
no wonder that at times there comes to us a feeling of discouragement, helplessness, and "what's
the use." But we must be ever alert, to stand up and deny these things out of existence so far as
our personal thought world is concerned. There is a wonderful occult truth in the last sentence. We
are the makers, preservers, and destroyers of our personal thought-world. We may bring into it
that which we desire to appear; we may keep there what we wish, cultivating, developing and
unfolding the thought-forms that we desire; we may destroy that which we wish to keep out. The
"I" is the master of its thought-world. Think over this great truth, O student! By Desire we call into
existence--by affirmation we preserve and encourage--by Denial we destroy. The Hindus in their
popular religious conceptions picture the One Being as a Trinity, composed of Brahma, the Creator;
Vishnu, the Preserver, and Siva, the Destroyer--not three gods, as is commonly supposed, but a
Trinity composed of three aspects of Deity or Being. This idea of the threefold Being is also
applicable to the Individual--"as above so below." The "I" is the Being of the Individual, and the
thought-world is its manifestation. It creates, preserves, and destroys--as it Will. Carry this idea
with you, and realize that your individual thought-world is your own field of manifestation. In it you
are constantly creating--constantly preserving--constantly destroying. And if you can destroy
anything in your own thought-world you remove it from its field of activity, so far as you are
concerned. And if you create anything in your own thought-world, you bring it into active being, so
far as you are concerned. And if you preserve anything, you keep it by you in effect and full
operation and influence in your life. This truth belongs to the higher phases of the subject, for its
explanation is inextricably bound up in the explanation of the "Thing-in-Itself"--the Absolute and Its
Manifestations. But even what we have said above, should give to the alert student sufficient
notice to cause him to grasp the facts of the case, and to apply the principles in his own life.

If one lives on the plane of the race-thought, he is subject to its laws, for the law of cause and effect
is in full operation on each plane of life. But when one raises himself above the race-thought, and
on to the plane of the Recognition of the Real Self--The "I"--then does he extricate himself from the
lower laws of cause and effect, and places himself on a higher plane of causation, in which he plays
a much higher part. And so we are constantly reminding you that your tower of strength and refuge
lies on the higher plane. But, nevertheless, we must deal with the things and laws of the lower
plane, because very few who read these lessons are able to rest entirely upon the higher plane. The
great majority of them have done no more than to lift themselves partially on to the higher plane,
and they are consequently living on both planes, partly in each, the consequence being that there is
a struggle between the conflicting laws of the two planes. The present stage is one of the hardest
on the Path of Attainment, and resembles the birth-pains of the physical body. But you are being Page 117
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born into a higher plane, and the pain after becoming the most acute will begin to ease, and in the
end will disappear, and then will come peace and calm. When the pain becomes the most acute,
then be cheered with the certainty that you have reached the crisis of your new spiritual birth, and
that you will soon gain peace. And then you will see that the peace and bliss will be worth all the
pain and struggle. Be brave, fellow followers of The Path--Deliverance is nigh. Soon will come the
Silence that follows the Storm. The pain that you are experiencing--ah, well do we know that you
are experiencing the pain--is not punishment, but is a necessary part of your growth. All Life follows
this plan--the pains of labor and birth ever precede the Deliverance. Such is Life--and Life is based
upon Truth--and all is well with the world. We did not intend to speak of these things in this lesson,
but as we write there comes to us a great cry for help and a word of encouragement and hope,
from the Class which is taking this course of lessons, and we feel bound to respond as we have
done. Peace be with you--one and all.

And, now we will begin our consideration of the laws governing what we have called
"Sub-conscious Influence."

All students of the Occult are aware of the fact that men may be, and are, largely influenced by the
thoughts of others. Not only is this the case in instances where thoughts are directed from the mind
of one person to the mind of another, but also when there is no special direction or intention in the
thought sent forth. The vibrations of thoughts linger in the astral atmosphere long after the effort
that sent forth the thought has passed. The astral atmosphere is charged with the vibrations of
thinkers of many years past, and still possesses sufficient vitality to affect those whose minds are
ready to receive them at this time. And we all attract to us thought vibrations corresponding in
nature with those which we are in the habit of entertaining. The Law of Attraction is in full
operation, and one who makes a study of the subject may see instances of it on all sides.

We invite to ourselves these thought vibrations by maintaining and entertaining thoughts along
certain lines. If we cultivate a habit of thinking along the lines of Cheerfulness, Brightness and
Optimism, we attract to ourselves similar thought vibrations of others and we will find that before
long we will find all sorts of cheerful thoughts pouring into our minds from all directions. And,
likewise, if we harbor thoughts of Gloom, Despair, Pessimism, we lay ourselves open to the influx of
similar thoughts which have emanated from the minds of others. Thoughts of Anger, Hate, or
Jealousy attract similar thoughts which serve to feed the flame and keep alive the fire of these low
emotions. Thoughts of Love tend to draw to ourselves the loving thoughts of others which tend to
fill us with a glow of loving emotion.

And not only are we affected in this way by the thoughts of others, but what is known as
"Suggestion" also plays an important part in this matter of sub-conscious influence. We find that
the mind has a tendency to reproduce the emotions, moods, shades of thought, and feelings of
other persons, as evidenced by their attitude, appearance, facial expression, or words. If we
associate with persons of a gloomy temperament, we run the risk of "catching" their mental trouble
by the law of suggestion, unless we understand this law and counteract it. In the same way we find
that cheerfulness is contagious, and if we keep in the company of cheerful people we are very apt
to take on their mental quality. The same rule applies to frequenting the company of unsuccessful
or successful people, as the case may be. If we allow ourselves to take up the suggestions Page 118
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constantly emanating from them, we will find that our minds will begin to reproduce the tones,
attitudes, characteristics, dispositions and traits of the other persons, and before long we will be
living on the same mental plane. As we have repeatedly said, these things are true only when we
allow ourselves to "take on" the impressions, but unless one has mastered the law of suggestion,
and understands its principles and operations he is more or less apt to be affected by it. All of you
readily recall the effect of certain persons upon others with whom they come in contact. One has a
faculty of inspiring with vigor and energy those in whose company he happens to be. Another
depresses those around him, and is avoided as a "human wet-blanket." Another will cause a feeling
of uneasiness in those around him, by reason of his prevailing attitude of distrust, suspicion, and
low cunning. Some carry an atmosphere of health around them, while others seem to be
surrounded with a sickly aura of disease, even when their physical condition does not seem to
indicate the lack of health. Mental states have a subtle way of impressing themselves upon us, and
the student who will take the trouble to closely observe those with whom he comes in contact will
receive a liberal education along these lines.

There is of course a great difference in the degree of suggestibility among different persons. There
are those who are almost immune, while at the other end of the line are to be found others who
are so constantly and strongly impressed by the suggestions of others, conscious or unconscious,
that they may be said to scarcely have any independent thought or will of their own. But nearly all
persons are suggestible to a greater or lesser degree.

It must not be supposed from what we have said that all suggestions are "bad," harmful, or
undesirable. Many suggestions are very good for us, and coming at the right time have aided us
much. But, nevertheless, it is well to always let your own mind pass upon these suggestions, before
allowing them to manifest in your sub-conscious mind. Let the final decision be your own--and not
the will of another--although you may have considered outside suggestions in connection with the

Remember always that YOU are an Individual, having a mind and Will of your own. Rest firmly upon
the base of your "I" consciousness, and you will find yourself able to manifest a wonderful strength
against the adverse suggestions of others. Be your own Suggestor--train and influence your
sub-conscious mind Yourself, and do not allow it to be tampered with by the suggestions of others.
Grow the sense of Individuality.

There has been much written of recent years in the Western world regarding the effect of the
Mental Attitude upon Success and attainment upon the material plane. While much of this is
nothing but the wildest imagining, still there remains a very firm and solid substratum of truth
underlying it all.

It is undoubtedly true that one's prevailing mental attitude is constantly manifesting and
objectifying itself in his life. Things, circumstances, people, plans, all seem to fit into the general
ideal of the strong mental attitude of a man. And this from the operation of mental law along a
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In the first place, the mind when directed toward a certain set of objects becomes very alert to
discover things concerning those objects--to seize upon things, opportunities, persons, ideas, and
facts tending to promote the objects thought of. The man who is looking for facts to prove certain
theories, invariably finds them, and is also quite likely to overlook facts tending to disprove his
theory. The Optimist and the Pessimist passing along the same streets, each sees thousands of
examples tending to fit in with his idea. As Kay says: "When one is engaged in seeking for a thing, if
he keep the image of it clearly before the mind, he will be very likely to find it, and that too,
probably, where it would otherwise have escaped his notice. So when one is engaged in thinking on
a subject, thoughts of things resembling it, or bearing upon it, and tending to illustrate it, come up
on every side. Truly, we may well say of the mind, as has been said of the eye, that 'it perceives only
what it brings within the power of perceiving.'" John Burroughs has well said regarding this that "No
one ever found the walking fern who did not have the walking fern in his mind. A person whose eye
is full of Indian relics picks them up in every field he walks through. They are quickly recognized
because the eye has been commissioned to find them."

When the mind is kept firmly fixed upon some ideal or aim, its whole and varied powers are bent
toward the realization and manifestation of that ideal. In thousands of ways the mind will operate
to objectify the subjective mental attitude, a great proportion of the mental effort being
accomplished along sub-conscious lines. It is of the greatest importance to one who wishes to
succeed in any undertaking, to keep before his mind's eye a clear mental image of that which he
desires. He should picture the thing desired, and himself as securing it, until it becomes almost real.
In this way he calls to his aid his entire mental force and power, along the sub-conscious lines, and,
as it were, makes a clear path over which he may walk to accomplishment. Bain says regarding this:
"By aiming at a new construction, we must clearly conceive what is aimed at. Where we have a very
distinct and intelligible model before us, we are in a fair way to succeed; in proportion as the ideal
is dim and wavering, we stagger or miscarry." Maudsley says: "We cannot do an act voluntarily
unless we know what we are going to do, and we cannot know exactly what we are going to do
until we have taught ourselves to do it." Carpenter says: "The continued concentration of attention
upon a certain idea gives it a dominant power, not only over the mind, but over the body." Muller
says: "The idea of our own strength gives strength to our movements. A person who is confident of
effecting anything by muscular efforts will do it more easily than one not so confident of his own
power." Tanner says: "To believe firmly is almost tantamount in the end to accomplishment.
Extraordinary instances are related showing the influence of the will over even the involuntary

Along the same lines, many Western writers have added their testimony to the Yogi principle of the
manifestation of thought into action. Kay has written: "A clear and accurate idea of what we wish
to do, and how it is to be effected, is of the utmost value and importance in all the affairs of life. A
man's conduct naturally shapes itself according to the ideas in his mind, and nothing contributes
more to success in life than having a high ideal and keeping it constantly in view. Where such is the
case one can hardly fail in attaining it. Numerous unexpected circumstances will be found to
conspire to bring it about, and even what seemed at first to be hostile may be converted into
means for its furtherance; while by having it constantly before the mind he will be ever ready to
take advantage of any favoring circumstances that may present themselves." Along the same lines, Page 120
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Foster has written these remarkable words: "It is wonderful how even the casualties of life seem to
bow to a spirit that will not bow to them, and yield to subserve a design which they may, in their
first apparent tendency, threaten to frustrate. When a firm, decisive spirit is recognized, it is curious
to see how the space clears around a man and leaves him room and freedom." Simpson has said: "A
passionate desire and an unwearied will can perform impossibilities, or what seem to be such to
the cold and feeble." And Maudsley gives to aspiring youth a great truth, when he says: "Thus it is
that aspirations are often prophecies, the harbingers of what a man shall be in a condition to
perform." And we may conclude the paragraph by quoting Lytton: "Dream, O youth, dream
manfully and nobly, and thy dreams shall be prophets."

This principle of the power of the Mental Image is strongly impressed upon the mind of the chela,
or student, by the Yogi teachers. The student is taught that just as the house is erected in
accordance with the plan of the architect, so is one's life built in accordance with the prevailing
Mental Image. The mind sub-consciously moulds itself around the prevailing mental image or
attitude, and then proceeds to draw upon the outer world for material with which to build in
accordance with the plan. Not only is one's character built in this way, but the circumstances and
incidents of his life follow the same rule. The Yogi student is instructed into the mysteries of the
power of the mind in this direction, not that he may make use of it to build up material success, or
to realize his personal desires--for he is taught to avoid these things--but he is fully instructed,
nevertheless, that he may understand the workings of the law around him. And it is a fact well
known to close students of the occult, that the few who have attained extraordinarily high degrees
of development, make use of this power in order to help the race. Many a world movement has
been directed by the mind, or minds, of some of these advanced souls who were able to see the
ideal of evolution ahead of the race, and by visualizing the same, and concentrating upon it in
meditation, actually hastened the progress of the evolutionary wave, and caused to actually
manifest that which they saw, and upon which they had meditated.

It is true that some occultists have used similar plans to further their own selfish personal
ends--often without fully realizing just what power they were employing--but this merely illustrates
the old fact that the forces of Nature may be used rightly and wrongly. And it is all the more reason
why those who are desirous of advancing the race--of assisting in the evolution of the
world--should make use of this mighty power in their work. Success is not reprehensible,
notwithstanding the fact that many have interpreted and applied the word in such a matter as to
make it appear as if it had no other meaning or application other than the crude, material selfish
one generally attributed to it, by reason of its misuse. The Western world is playing its part in the
evolution of the race, and its keynote is "Accomplishment." Those who have advanced so high that
they are able to view the world of men, as one sees a valley from a mountain peak, recognize what
this strenuous Western life means. They see mighty forces in operation--mighty principles being
worked out by those who little dream of the ultimate significance of that which they are doing.
Mighty things are before the Western world to-day--wonderful changes are going on--great things
are in the womb of time, and the hour of birth draws near. The men and women in the Western
world feel within them the mighty urge to "accomplish" something--to take an active part in the
great drama of life. And they are right in giving full expression to this urge, and are doing well in Page 121
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using every legitimate means in the line of expression. And this idea of the Mental Attitude, or the
Mental Image, is one of the greatest factors in this striving for Success.

In this lesson we do not purpose giving "Success Talks" for our students. These lessons are intended
to fill another field, and there are many other channels of information along the lines named. What
we wish to do is to point out to our students the meaning of all this strenuous striving of the age, in
the Western world, and the leading principle employed therein. The great achievements of the
material world are being accomplished by means of the Power of the Mind. Men are beginning to
understand that "Thought manifests itself in Action," and that Thought attracts to itself the things,
persons and circumstances in harmony with itself. The Power of Mind is becoming manifest in
hundreds of ways. The power of Desire, backed by Faith and Will, is beginning to be recognized as
one of the greatest of known dynamic forces. The life of the race is entering into a new and strange
stage of development and evolution, and in the years to come MIND will be seen, more clearly and
still more clearly, to be the great principle underlying the world of material things and happenings.
That "All is Mind" is more than a dreamy, metaphysical utterance, is being recognized by the
leaders in the world's thought.

As we have said, great changes are before the world and the race, and every year brings us nearer
to the beginning of them. In fact, the beginning is already upon us. Let any thinker stop and reflect
over the wonderful changes of the past six years--since the dawning of the Twentieth Century, and
he will be dull indeed if he sees not the trend of affairs. We are entering into a new Great Cycle of
the race, and the old is being prepared for being dropped off like an old worn out husk. Old
conventions, ideals, customs, laws, ethics, and things sociological, economical, theological,
philosophical, and metaphysical have been outgrown, and are about to be "shed" by the race. The
great cauldron of human thought is bubbling away fiercely, and many things are rising to its
surface. Like all great changes, the good will come only with much pain--all birth is with pain. The
race feels the pain and perpetual unrest, but knows not what is the disease nor the remedy. Many
false cases of diagnosis and prescription are even now noticeable, and will become still more in
evidence as the years roll by. Many self-styled saviours of the race--prescribers for the pain of the
soul and mind--will arise and fall. But out of it all will come that for which the race now waits.

The changes that are before us are as great as the changes in thought and life described in the late
novel by H. G. Wells, entitled "In the Days of the Comet." In fact, Mr. Wells has indicated in that
story some of the very changes that the advanced souls of the race have informed their students
are before the race--the prophetic insight of the writer named seems marvelous, until one realizes
that even that writer is being used as a part of the mental machinery of The Change itself. But the
change will not come about by reason of the new gas caused by the brushing of the earth's surface
by a passing comet. It will come from the unfolding of the race mind, the process being now under
way. Are not the signs of mental unrest and discomfort becoming more and more apparent as the
days go by? The pain is growing greater, and the race is beginning to fret and chafe, and moan. It
knows not what it wants, but it knows that it feels pain and wants something to relieve that pain.
The old things are beginning to totter and fall, and ideas rendered sacred by years of observance
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we may hear the straining and groaning of the ideas and principles that are striving to force their
way out on to the plane of manifestation.

Men are running hither and thither crying for a leader and a savior. They are trying this thing, and
that thing, but they find not that which they seek. They cry for Satisfaction, but it eludes them. And
yet all this search and disappointment is part of the Great Change, and is preparing the race for
That-which-must-Come. And yet the relief will not come from any Thing or Things. It will come from
Within. Just as when, in Well's story, things righted themselves when the vapor of the comet had
cleared men's minds, so will Things take their new places when the mind of the race becomes
cleared by the new unfoldment that is even now under way. Men are beginning to feel each other's
pains--they find themselves unsatisfied by the old rule of "every man for himself, and the devil take
the hindmost"--it used to content the successful, but now it doesn't seem to be so satisfying. The
man on top is becoming lonesome, and dissatisfied, and discontented--his success seems to appall
him, in some mysterious manner. And the man underneath feels stirring within himself strange
longings and desires, and dissatisfaction. And new frictions are arising, and new and startling ideas
are being suddenly advanced, supported and opposed.

And the relations between people seem to be unsatisfactory. The old rules, laws, and bonds are
proving irksome. New, strange, and wild thoughts are coming into the minds of people, which they
dare not utter to their friends--and yet these same friends are finding similar ideas within
themselves. And somehow, underneath it all is to be found a certain Honesty--yes, there is where
the trouble seems to come, the world is tiring of hypocrisy and dishonesty in all human relations,
and is crying aloud to be led back, someway, to Truth and Honesty in Thought and Action. But it
does not see the way out! And it will not see the way out, until the race-mind unfolds still further.
And the pain of the new unfoldment is stirring the race to its depths. From the deep recesses of the
race-mind are rising to the surface old passions, relics from the cave-dweller days, and all sorts of
ugly mental relics of the past. And they will continue to rise and show themselves until at last the
bubbling pot will begin to quiet down, and then will come a new peace, and the best will come to
the surface--the essence of all the experiences of the race.

To our students, we would say: During the struggle ahead of the race, play well your part, doing the
best you can, living each day by itself, meeting each new phase of life with confidence and courage.
Be not deluded by appearances, nor follow after strange prophets. Let the evolutionary processes
work themselves out, and do you fall in with the wave without struggling, and without overmuch
striving. The Law is working itself out well--of that be assured. Those who have entered into even a
partial understanding and recognition of the One Life underlying, will find that they will be as the
chosen people during the changes that are coming to the race. They have attained that which the
race is reaching toward in pain and travail. And the force behind the Law will carry them along, for
they will be the leaven that is to lighten the great mass of the race in the new dispensation. Not by
deed, or by action, but by Thought, will these people leaven the mass. The Thought is even now at
work, and all who read these words are playing a part in the work, although they may know it not.
If the race could realize this truth of the One Life underlying, to-day, the Change would occur in a
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race--this new consciousness--then will Things take their proper places, and the Lion and the Lamb
lie down together in peace.

We have thought it well to say these things in this the last lesson of this course. They are needed
words--they will serve to point out the way to those who are able to read. "Watch and wait for the
Silence that will follow the Storm."

In this series of lessons we have endeavored to give you a plain, practical presentation of some of
the more important features of "Raja Yoga." But this phase of the subject, as important and
interesting as it is, is not the highest phase of the great Yoga teachings. It is merely the preparation
of the soil of the mind for what comes afterward. The phase called "Gnani Yoga"--the Yoga of
Wisdom--is the highest of all the various phases of Yoga, although each of the lower steps is
important in itself. We find ourselves approaching the phase of our work for which we have long
wished. Those who have advised and directed this work have counseled us to deal with the less
advanced and simpler phases, in order to prepare the minds of those who might be interested, so
that they would be ready for the higher teachings. At times we have felt an impatience for the
coming of the day when we would be able to teach the highest that has come to us. And now the
time seems to have come. Following this course, we will begin a series of lessons in "GNANI
YOGA"--the Yoga of Wisdom--in which we will pass on to our students the highest teachings
regarding the Reality and its Manifestations--the One and the Many. The teachings that "All is
Mind" will be explained in such a manner as to be understood by all who have followed us so far.
We will be able to impart to you the higher truths about Spiritual Evolution, sometimes called
"Reincarnation," as well as Spiritual Cause and Effect, often called "Karma." The highest truths
about these important subjects are often obscured by popular misconceptions occasioned by
partial teaching. We trust that you--our students--will wish to follow us still higher--higher than we
have ventured so far, and we assure you that there is a Truth to be seen and known that is as much
higher than the other phases upon which we have touched, as those phases have been higher than
the current beliefs of the masses of the race. We trust that the Powers of Knowledge may guide
and direct us that we may be able to convey our message so that it may be accepted and
understood. We thank our students who have traveled thus far with us, and we assure them that
their loving sympathy has ever been a help and an inspiration to us.

Peace be with you. Page 124
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The Yogi Philosophy may be divided into several great branches, or fields. What is known as "Hatha
Yoga" deals with the physical body and its control; its welfare; its health; its preservation; its laws,
etc. What is known as "Raja Yoga" deals with the Mind; its control; its development; its unfoldment,
etc. What is known as "Bhakti Yoga" deals with the Love of the Absolute--God. What is known as
"Gnani Yoga" deals with the scientific and intellectual knowing of the great questions regarding Life
and what lies back of Life--the Riddle of the Universe.

Each branch of Yoga is but a path leading toward the one end--unfoldment, development, and
growth. He who wishes first to develop, control and strengthen his physical body so as to render it
a fit instrument of the Higher Self, follows the path of "Hatha Yoga." He who would develop his
will-power and mental faculties, unfolding the inner senses, and latent powers, follows the path of
"Raja Yoga." He who wishes to develop by "knowing"--by studying the fundamental principles, and
the wonderful truths underlying Life, follows the path of "Gnani Yoga." And he who wishes to grow
into a union with the One Life by the influence of Love, he follows the path of "Bhakti Yoga."

But it must not be supposed that the student must ally himself to only a single one of these paths
to power. In fact, very few do. The majority prefer to gain a rounded knowledge, and acquaint
themselves with the principles of the several branches, learning something of each, giving
preference of course to those branches that appeal to them more strongly, this attraction being the
indication of need, or requirement, and, therefore, being the hand pointing out the path.

It is well for every one to know something of "Hatha Yoga," in order that the body may be purified,
strengthened, and kept in health in order to become a more fitting instrument of the Higher Self. It
is well that each one should know something of "Raja Yoga," that he may understand the training
and control of the mind, and the use of the Will. It is well that every one should learn the wisdom of
"Gnani Yoga," that he may realize the wonderful truths underlying life--the science of Being. And,
most assuredly every one should know something of Bhakti Yogi, that he may understand the great
teachings regarding the Love underlying all life.

We have written a work on "Hatha Yoga," and a course on "Raja Yoga" which is now in book form.
We have told you something regarding "Gnani Yoga" in our Fourteen Lessons, and also in our
Advanced Course. We have written something regarding "Bhakti Yoga" in our Advanced Course,
and, we hope, have taught it also all through our other lessons, for we fail to see how one can teach
or study any of the branches of Yoga without being filled with a sense of Love and Union with the
Source of all Life. To know the Giver of Life, is to love him, and the more we know of him, the more
love will we manifest.

In this course of lessons, of which this is the first, we shall take up the subject of "Gnani Yoga"--the
Yoga of Wisdom, and will endeavor to make plain some of its most important and highest
teachings. And, we trust that in so doing, we shall be able to awaken in you a still higher realization
of your relationship with the One, and a corresponding Love for that in which you live, and move
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Let us begin by a consideration of what has been called the "Questions of Questions"--the question:
"What is Reality?" To understand the question we have but to take a look around us and view the
visible world. We see great masses of something that science has called "matter." We see in
operation a wonderful something called "force" or "energy" in its countless forms of
manifestations. We see things that we call "forms of life," varying in manifestation from the tiny
speck of slime that we call the Moneron, up to that form that we call Man.

But study this world of manifestations by means of science and research--and such study is of
greatest value--still we must find ourselves brought to a point where we cannot progress further.
Matter melts into mystery--Force resolves itself into something else--the secret of living-forms
subtly elude us--and mind is seen as but the manifestation of something even finer. But in losing
these things of appearance and manifestation, we find ourselves brought up face to face with a
Something Else that we see must underlie all these varying forms, shapes and manifestations. And
that Something Else, we call Reality, because it is Real, Permanent, Enduring. And although men
may differ, dispute, wrangle, and quarrel about this Reality, still there is one point upon which they
must agree, and that is that Reality is One--that underlying all forms and manifestations there must
be a One Reality from which all things flow. And this inquiry into this One Reality is indeed the
Question of Questions of the Universe.

The highest reason of Man--as well as his deepest intuition--has always recognized that this Reality
or Underlying Being must be but ONE, of which all Nature is but varying degrees of manifestation,
emanation, or expression. All have recognized that Life is a stream flowing from One great fount,
the nature and name of which is unknown--some have said unknowable. Differ as men do about
theories regarding the nature of this one, they all agree that it can be but One. It is only when men
begin to name and analyze this One, that confusion results.

Let us see what men have thought and said about this One--it may help us to understand the
nature of the problem.

The materialist claims that this one is a something called
Matter--self-existent--eternal--infinite--containing within itself the potentiality of Matter, Energy
and Mind. Another school, closely allied to the materialists, claim that this One is a something
called Energy, of which Matter and Mind are but modes of motion. The Idealists claim that the One
is a something called Mind, and that Matter and Force are but ideas in that One Mind. Theologians
claim that this One is a something called a personal God, to whom they attribute certain qualities,
characteristics, etc., the same varying with their creeds and dogmas. The Naturistic school claims
that this One is a something called Nature, which is constantly manifesting itself in countless forms.
The occultists, in their varying schools, Oriental and Occidental, have taught that the One was a
Being whose Life constituted the life of all living forms.

All philosophies, all science, all religions, inform us that this world of shapes, forms and names is
but a phenomenal or shadow world--a show-world--back of which rests Reality, called by some
name of the teacher. But remember this, all philosophy that counts is based upon some form of
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principle; a substance; an Energy, or Spirit. There is but One--there can be but One--such is the
inevitable conclusion of the highest human reason, intuition or faith.

And, likewise, the same reason informs us that this One Life must permeate all apparent forms of
life, and that all apparent material forms, forces, energies, and principles must be emanations from
that One, and, consequently "of" it. It may be objected to, that the creeds teaching a personal god
do not so hold, for they teach that their God is the creator of the Universe, which he has set aside
from himself as a workman sets aside his workmanship. But this objection avails naught, for where
could such a creator obtain the material for his universe, except from himself; and where the
energy, except from the same source; and where the Life, unless from his One Life. So in the end, it
is seen that there must be but One--not two, even if we prefer the terms God and his Universe, for
even in this case the Universe must have proceeded from God, and can only live, and move and act,
and think, by virtue of his Essence permeating it.

In passing by the conceptions of the various thinkers, we are struck by the fact that the various
schools seem to manifest a one-sidedness in their theories, seeing only that which fits in with their
theories, and ignoring the rest. The Materialist talks about Infinite and Eternal Matter, although the
latest scientific investigations have shown us

Matter fading into Nothingness--the Eternal Atom being split into countless particles called
Corpuscles or Electrons, which at the last seem to be nothing but a unit of Electricity, tied up in a
"knot in the Ether"--although just what the Ether is, Science does not dare to guess. And Energy,
also seems to be unthinkable except as operating through matter, and always seems to be acting
under the operation of Laws--and Laws without a Law giver, and a Law giver without mind or
something higher than Mind, is unthinkable. And Mind, as we know it, seems to be bound up with
matter and energy in a wonderful combination, and is seen to be subject to laws outside of itself,
and to be varying, inconstant, and changeable, which attributes cannot be conceived of as
belonging to the Absolute. Mind as we know it, as well as Matter and Energy, is held by the highest
occult teachers to be but an appearance and a relativity of something far more fundamental and
enduring, and we are compelled to fall back upon that old term which wise men have used in order
to describe that Something Else that lies back of, and under, Matter, Energy and Mind--and that
word is "Spirit."

We cannot tell just what is meant by the word "Spirit," for we have nothing with which to describe
it. But we can think of it as meaning the "essence" of Life and Being--the Reality underlying
Universal Life.

Of course no name can be given to this One, that will fitly describe it. But we have used the term
"The Absolute" in our previous lessons, and consider it advisable to continue its use, although the
student may substitute any other name that appeals to him more strongly. We do not use the word
God (except occasionally in order to bring out a shade of meaning) not because we object to it, but
because by doing so we would run the risk of identifying The Absolute with some idea of a personal
god with certain theological attributes. Nor does the word "Principle" appeal to us, for it seems to
imply a cold, unfeeling, abstract thing, while we conceive the Absolute Spirit or Being to be a warm,
vital, living, acting, feeling Reality. We do not use the word Nature, which many prefer, because of Page 127
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its materialistic meaning to the minds of many, although the word is very dear to us when referring
to the outward manifestation of the Absolute Life.

Of the real nature of The Absolute, of course, we can know practically nothing, because it
transcends all human experience and Man has nothing with which he can measure the Infinite.
Spinoza was right when he said that "to define God is to deny him," for any attempt to define, is, of
course an attempt to limit or make finite the Infinite. To define a thing is to identify it with
something else--and where is the something else with which to identify the Infinite? The Absolute
cannot be described in terms of the Relative. It is not Something, although it contains within itself
the reality underlying Everything. It cannot be said to have the qualities of any of its apparently
separated parts, for it is the ALL. It is all that really IS.

It is beyond Matter, Force, or Mind as we know it, and yet these things emanate from it, and must
be within its nature. For what is in the manifested must be in the manifestor--no stream can rise
higher than its source--the effect cannot be greater than the cause--you cannot get something out
of nothing.

But it is hard for the human mind to take hold of That which is beyond its experience--many
philosophers consider it impossible--and so we must think of the Absolute in the concepts and
terms of its highest manifestation. We find Mind higher in the scale than Matter or Energy, and so
we are justified in using the terms of Mind in speaking of the Absolute, rather than the terms of
Matter or Energy--so let us try to think of an Infinite Mind, whose powers and capacities are raised
to an infinite degree--a Mind of which Herbert Spencer said that it was "a mode of being as much
transcending intelligence and will, as these transcend mere mechanical motion."

While it is true (as all occultists know) that the best information regarding the Absolute come from
regions of the Self higher than Intellect, yet we are in duty bound to examine the reports of the
Intellect concerning its information regarding the One. The Intellect has been developed in us for
use--for the purpose of examining, considering, thinking--and it behooves us to employ it. By
turning it to this purpose, we not only strengthen and unfold it, but we also get certain information
that can reach us by no other channel. And moreover, by such use of the Intellect we are able to
discover many fallacies and errors that have crept into our minds from the opinions and dogmas of
others--as Kant said: "The chief, and perhaps the only, use of a philosophy of pure reason is a
negative one. It is not an organon for extending, but a discipline for limiting! Instead of discovering
truth, its modest function is to guard against error." Let us then listen to the report of the Intellect,
as well as of the higher fields of mentation.

One of the first reports of the Intellect, concerning the Absolute, is that it must have existed
forever, and must continue to exist forever. There is no escape from this conclusion, whether one
view the matter from the viewpoint of the materialist, philosopher, occultist, or theologian. The
Absolute could not have sprung from Nothing, and there was no other cause outside of itself from
which it could have emanated. And there can be no cause outside of itself which can terminate its
being. And we cannot conceive of Infinite Life, or Absolute Life, dying. So the Absolute must be
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This idea of the Eternal is practically unthinkable to the human mind, although it is forced to believe
that it must be a quality of the

Absolute. The trouble arises from the fact that the Intellect is compelled to see everything through
the veil of Time, and Cause and Effect. Now, Cause and Effect, and Time, are merely phenomena or
appearances of the relative world, and have no place in the Absolute and Real. Let us see if we can
understand this.

Reflection will show you that the only reason that you are unable to think of or picture a Causeless
Cause, is because everything that you have experienced in this relative world of the senses has had
a cause--something from which it sprung. You have seen Cause and Effect in full operation all about
you, and quite naturally your Intellect has taken it for granted that there can be nothing
uncaused--nothing without a preceding cause. And the Intellect is perfectly right, so far as Things
are concerned, for all Things are relative and are therefore caused. But back of the caused things
must lie THAT which is the Great Causer of Things, and which, not being a Thing itself, cannot have
been caused--cannot be the effect of a cause. Your minds reel when you try to form a mental image
of That which has had no cause, because you have had no experience in the sense world of such a
thing, and there fail to form the image. It is out of your experience, and you cannot form the
mental picture. But yet your mind is compelled to believe that there must have been an Original
One, that can have had no cause. This is a hard task for the Intellect, but in time it comes to see just
where the trouble lies, and ceases to interpose objections to the voice of the higher regions of the

And, the Intellect experiences a similar difficulty when it tries to think of an Eternal--a That which is
above and outside of Time. We see Time in operation everywhere, and take it for granted that Time
is a reality--an actual thing. But this is a mistake of the senses. There is no such thing as Time, in
reality. Time exists solely in our minds. It is merely a form of perception by which we express our
consciousness of the Change in Things.

We cannot think of Time except in connection with a succession of changes of things in our
consciousness--either things of the outer world, or the passing of thought-things through our mind.
A day is merely the consciousness of the passing of the sun--an hour or minute merely the
subdivision of the day, or else the consciousness of the movement of the hands of the
clock--merely the consciousness of the movement of Things--the symbols of changes in Things. In a
world without changes in Things, there would be no such thing as Time. Time is but a mental
invention. Such is the report of the Intellect.

And, besides the conclusions of pure abstract reasoning about Time, we may see many instances of
the relativity of Time in our everyday experiences. We all know that when we are interested Time
seems to pass rapidly, and when we are bored it drags along in a shameful manner. We know that
when we are happy, Time develops the speed of a meteor, while when we are unhappy it crawls
like a tortoise. When we are interested or happy our attention is largely diverted from the changes
occurring in things--because we do not notice the Things so closely. And while we are miserable or
bored, we notice the details in Things, and their changes, until the length of time seems
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reproduction, old age, and death, in a few minutes, and no doubt its life seems as full as does that
of the elephant with his hundred years. Why? Because so many things haze happened! When we
are conscious of many things happening, we get the impression and sensation of the length of time.
The greater the consciousness of things, the greater the sensation of Time. When we are so
interested in talking to a loved one that we forget all that is occurring about us, then the hours fly
by unheeded, while the same hours seem like days to one in the same place who is not interested
or occupied with some task.

Men have nodded, and in the second before awakening they have dreamed of events that seemed
to have required the passage of years. Many of you have had experiences of this kind, and many
such cases have been recorded by science. On the other hand, one may fall asleep and remain
unconscious, but without dreams, for hours, and upon awakening will insist that he has merely
nodded. Time belongs to the relative mind, and has no place in the Eternal or Absolute.

Next, the Intellect informs us that it must think of the Absolute as Infinite in Space--present
everywhere--Omnipresent. It cannot be limited, for there is nothing outside of itself to limit it.
There is no such place as Nowhere. Every place is in the Everywhere. And Everywhere is filled with
the All--the Infinite Reality--the Absolute.

And, just as was the case with the idea of Time, we find it most difficult--if not indeed
impossible--to form an idea of an Omnipresent--of That which occupies Infinite Space. This because
everything that our minds have experienced has had dimensions and limits. The secret lies in the
fact that Space, like Time, has no real existence outside of our perception of consciousness of the
relative position of Things--material objects. We see this thing here, and that thing there. Between
them is Nothingness. We take another object, say a yard-stick, and measure off this Nothingness
between the two objects, and we call this measure of Nothingness by the term Distance. And yet
we cannot have measured Nothingness--that is impossible. What have we really done? Simply this,
determined how many lengths of yard-stick could be laid between the other two objects.

We call this process measuring Space, but Space is Nothing, and we have merely determined the
relative position of objects. To "measure Space" we must have three Things or objects, i.e., (l) The
object from which we start the measure; (2) The object with which we measure; and (3) The object
with which we end our measurement. We are unable to conceive of Infinite Space, because we lack
the third object in the measuring process--the ending object. We may use ourselves as a starting
point, and the mental yard-stick is always at hand, but where is the object at the other side of
Infinity of Space by which the measurement may be ended? It is not there, and we cannot think of
the end without it.

Let us start with ourselves, and try to imagine a million million miles, and then multiply them by
another million million miles, a million million times. What have we done? Simply extended our
mental yard-stick a certain number of times to an imaginary point in the Nothingness that we call
Space. So far so good, but the mind intuitively recognizes that beyond that imaginary point at the
end of the last yard-stick, there is a capacity for an infinite extension of yard-sticks--an infinite
capacity for such extension. Extension of what? Space? No! Yard-sticks! Objects! Things! Without
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There is no such thing as Real Space. Space is merely an infinite capacity for extending objects.
Space itself is merely a name for Nothingness. If you can form an idea of an object swept out of
existence, and nothing to take its place, that Nothing would be called Space, the term implying the
possibility of placing something there without displacing anything else.

Size, of course, is but another form of speaking of Distance. And in this connection let us not forget
that just as one may think of Space being infinite in the direction of largeness, so may we think of it
as being infinite in the sense of smallness. No matter how small may be an object thought of, we
are still able to think of it as being capable of subdivision, and so on infinitely. There is no limit in
this direction either. As Jakob has said: "The conception of the infinitely minute is as little capable
of being grasped by us, as is that of the infinitely great. Despite this, the admission of the reality of
the infinitude, both in the direction of greatness and of minuteness, is inevitable."

And, as Radenhausen has said: "The idea of Space is only an unavoidable illusion of our
Consciousness, or of our finite nature, and does not exist outside of ourselves; the universe is
infinitely small and infinitely great."

The telescope has opened to us ideas of magnificent vastness and greatness, and the perfected
microscope has opened to us a world of magnificent smallness and minuteness. The latter has
shown us that a drop of water is a world of minute living forms who live, eat, fight, reproduce, and
die. The mind is capable of imagining a universe occupying no more space than one
million-millionth of the tiniest speck visible under the strongest microscope--and then imagining
such a universe containing millions of suns and worlds similar to our own, and inhabited by living
forms akin to ours--living, thinking men and women, identical in every respect to ourselves. Indeed,
as some philosophers have said, if our Universe were suddenly reduced to such a size--the relative
proportions of everything being preserved, of course--then we would not be conscious of any
change, and life would go on the same, and we would be of the same importance to ourselves and
to the Absolute as we are this moment. And the same would be true were the Universe suddenly
enlarged a million-million times. These changes would make no difference in reality. Compared
with each other, the tiniest speck and the largest sun are practically the same size when viewed
from the Absolute.

We have dwelt upon these things so that you would be able to better realize the relativity of Space
and Time, and perceive that they are merely symbols of Things used by the mind in dealing with
finite objects, and have no place in reality. When this is realized, then the idea of Infinity in Time
and Space is more readily grasped.

As Radenhausen says: "Beyond the range of human reason there is neither Space nor Time; they
are arbitrary conceptions of man, at which he has arrived by the comparison and arrangement of
different impressions which he has received from the outside world. The conception of Space arises
from the sequence of the various forms which fill Space, by which the external world appears to the
individual man. The conception of Time arises from the sequence of the various forms which
change in space (motion), by which the external world acts on the individual man, and so on. But
externally to ourselves, the distinction between repletion of Space and mutation of Space does not
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time--nothing is at a standstill," and to quote Ruckert: "The world has neither beginning nor end, in
space nor in time. Everywhere is center and turning-point, and in a moment is eternity."

Next, the Intellect informs us that we must think of the Absolute as containing within Itself all the
Power there is, because there can be no other source or reservoir of Power, and there can be no
Power outside of the All-Power. There can be no Power outside of the Absolute to limit, confine, or
conflict with It. Any laws of the Universe must have been imposed by It, for there is no other
law-giver, and every manifestation of Energy, Force, or Power, perceived or evident in Nature must
be a part of the Power of the Absolute working along lines laid down by it. In the Third Lesson,
which will be entitled The Will-to-Live, we shall see this Power manifesting along the lines of Life as
we know it.

Next, the Intellect informs us that it is compelled to think of the Absolute as containing within Itself
all possible Knowledge or Wisdom, because there can be no Knowledge or Wisdom outside of It,
and therefore all the Wisdom and Knowledge possible must be within It. We see Mind, Wisdom,
and Knowledge manifested by relative forms of Life, and such must emanate from the Absolute in
accordance with certain laws laid down by It, for otherwise there would be no such wisdom, etc.,
for there is nowhere outside of the All from whence it could come. The effect cannot be greater
than the cause. If there is anything unknown to the Absolute, then it will never be known to finite
minds. So, therefore, ALL KNOWLEDGE that Is, Has Been, or Can Be, must be NOW vested in the
One--the Absolute.

This does not mean that the Absolute thinks, in any such sense as does Man. The Absolute must
Know, without Thinking. It does not have to gather Knowledge by the process of Thinking, as does
Man--such an Idea would be ridiculous, for from whence could the Knowledge come outside of
itself. When man thinks he draws to himself Knowledge from the Universal source by the action of
the Mind, but the Absolute has only itself to draw on. So we cannot imagine the Absolute
compelled to Think as we do.

But, lest we be misunderstood regarding this phase of the subject, we may say here that the
highest occult teachings inform us that the Absolute does manifest a quality somewhat akin to
what we would call constructive thought, and that such "thoughts" manifest into objectivity and
manifestation, and become Creation. Created Things, according to the Occult teachings are
"Thoughts of God." Do not let this idea disturb you, and cause you to feel that you are nothing,
because you have been called into being by a Thought of the Infinite One. Even a Thought of that
One would be intensely real in the relative world--actually Real to all except the Absolute itself--and
even the Absolute knows that the Real part of its Creations must be a part of itself manifested
through its thought, for the Thought of the Infinite must be Real, and a part of Itself, for it cannot
be anything else, and to call it Nothing is merely to juggle with words. The faintest Thought of the
Infinite One would be far more real than anything man could create--as solid as the mountain--as
hard as steel--as durable as the diamond--for, verily, even these are emanations of the Mind of the
Infinite, and are things of but a day, while the higher Thoughts--the soul of Man--contains within
itself a spark from the Divine Flame itself--the Spirit of the Infinite. But these things will appear in
their own place, as we proceed with this series. We have merely given you a little food for thought
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So you see, good friends and students, that the Intellect in its highest efforts, informs us that it
finds itself compelled to report that the One--the Absolute--That which it is compelled to admit
really exists--must be a One possessed of a nature so far transcending human experience that the
human mind finds itself without the proper concepts, symbols, and words with which to think of It.
But none the less, the Intellect finds itself bound by its own laws to postulate the existence of such
an One.

It is the veriest folly to try to think of the One as It is "in Itself"--for we have nothing but human
attributes with which to measure it, and It so far transcends such measurements that the mental
yard-sticks run out into infinity and are lost sight of. The highest minds of the race inform us that
the most exalted efforts of their reason compels them to report that the One--in Itself--cannot be
spoken of as possessing attributes or qualities capable of being expressed in human words
employed to describe the Things of the relative world--and all of our words are such. All of our
words originate from such ideas, and all of our ideas arise from our experience, directly or
indirectly. So we are not equipped with words with which to think of or speak of that which
transcends experience, although our Intellect informs us that Reality lies back of our experience.

Philosophy finds itself unable to do anything better than to bring us face to face with high
paradoxes. Science in its pursuit of Truth finds it cunningly avoiding it, and ever escaping its net.
And we believe that the Absolute purposely causes this to be, that in the end Man may be
compelled to look for the Spirit within himself--the only place where he can come in touch with it.
This, we think, is the answer to the Riddle of the Sphinx--"Look Within for that which Thou

But while the Spirit may be discerned only by looking within ourselves, we find that once the mind
realizes that the Absolute Is, it will be able to see countless evidences of its action and presence by
observing manifested Life without. All Life is filled with the Life Power and Will of the Absolute.

To us Life is but One--the Universe is a living Unity, throbbing, thrilling and pulsating with the
Will-to-Live of the Absolute. Back of all apparent shapes, forms, names, forces, elements, principles
and substances, there is but One--One Life, present everywhere, and manifesting in an infinitude of
shapes, forms, and forces All individual lives are but centers of consciousness in the One Life
underlying, depending upon it for degree of unfoldment, expression and manifestation.

This may sound like Pantheism to some, but it is very different from the Pantheism of the schools
and cults. Pantheism is defined as "the doctrine that God consists in the combined forces and laws
manifested in the existing Universe," or that "the Universe taken or conceived as a whole is God."
These definitions do not fit the conception of the Absolute, of the Yogi Philosophy--they seem to
breathe but a refined materialism. The Absolute is not "the combined forces and laws manifested in
the universe," nor "the universe conceived as a whole." Instead, the Universe, its forces and laws,
even conceived as a whole, have no existence in themselves, but are mere manifestations of the
Absolute. Surely this is different from Pantheism.

We teach that the Absolute is immanent in, and abiding in all forms of Life in the Universe, as well
as in its forces and laws--all being but manifestations of the Will of the One. And we teach that this Page 133
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One is superior to all forms of manifestations, and that Its existence and being does not depend
upon the manifestations, which are but effects of the Cause.

The Pantheistic Universe--God is but a thing of phenomenal appearance, but the Absolute is the
very Spirit of Life--a Living, Existing Reality, and would be so even if every manifestation were
withdrawn from appearance and expression--drawn back into the source from which it emanated.
The Absolute is more than Mountain or Ocean--Electricity or Gravitation--Monad or Man--It is
SPIRIT--LIFE--BEING--REALITY--the ONE THAT IS. Omnipotent, Omnipresent; Omniscient; Eternal;
Infinite; Absolute; these are Man's greatest words, and yet they but feebly portray a shadow
thrown by the One Itself.

The Absolute is not a far-away Being directing our affairs at long range--not an absentee Deity--but
an Immanent Life in and about us all--manifesting in us and creating us into individual centers of
consciousness, in pursuance with some great law of being.

And, more than this, the Absolute instead of being an indifferent and unmoved spectator to its own
creation, is a thriving, longing, active, suffering, rejoicing, feeling Spirit, partaking of the feelings of
its manifestations, rather than callously witnessing them. It lives in us--with us--through us. Back of
all the pain in the world may be found a great feeling and suffering love. The pain of the world is
not punishment or evidence of divine wrath, but the incidents of the working out of some cosmic
plan, in which the Absolute is the Actor, through the forms of Its manifestations.

The message of the Absolute to some of the Illumined has been, "All is being done in the best and
only possible way--I am doing the best I can--all is well--and in the end will so appear."

The Absolute is no personal Deity--yet in itself it contains all that goes to make up all personality
and all human relations. Father, Mother, Child, Friend, is in It. All forms of human love and craving
for sympathy, understanding and companionship may find refuge in loving the Absolute.

The Absolute is constantly in evidence in our lives, and yet we have been seeking it here and there
in the outer world, asking it to show itself and prove Its existence. Well may it say to us: "Hast thou
been so long time with me, and hast thou not known me?" This is the great tragedy of Life, that the
Spirit comes to us--Its own--and we know It not. We fail to hear Its words: "Oh, ye who mourn, I
suffer with you and through you. Yea, it is I who grieve in you. Your pain is mine--to the last pang. I
suffer all pain through you--and yet I rejoice beyond you, for I know that through you, and with you,
I shall conquer."

And this is a faint idea of what we believe the Absolute to be. In the following lessons we shall see it
in operation in all forms of life, and in ourselves. We shall get close to the workings of Its mighty
Will--close to Its Heart of Love.

Carry with you the Central Thought of the Lesson: CENTRAL THOUGHT. There is but One Life in the
Universe. And underlying that One Life--Its Real Self--Its Essence--Its Spirit--is The Absolute, living,
feeling, suffering, rejoicing, longing, striving, in and through us. The Absolute is all that really Is, and
all the visible Universe and forms of Life is Its expression, through Its Will. We lack words adequate
to describe the nature of the Absolute, but we will use two words describing its inmost nature as Page 134
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best we see it. These two words are LIFE and LOVE, the one describing the outer, the other the
inner nature. Let us manifest both Life and Love as a token of our origin and inner nature. Peace be
with you. Page 135
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In our First Lesson of this series, we brought out the idea that the human mind was compelled to
report the fact that it could not think of The Absolute except as possessing the quality of
Omnipresence--Present-Everywhere. And, likewise, the human mind is compelled to think that all
there IS must be The Absolute, or of the Absolute. And if a thing is of the Absolute, then the
Absolute must be in it, in some way--must be the essence of it. Granting this, we must then think
that everything must be filled with the essence of Life, for Life must be one of the qualities of the
Absolute, or rather what we call Life must be the outward expression of the essential Being of the
Absolute. And if this be so, then it would follow that everything in the Universe must be Alive. The
mind cannot escape this conclusion. And if the facts do not bear out this conclusion then we must
be forced to admit that the entire basic theory of the Absolute and its emanations must fall, and be
considered as an error. No chain is stronger than its weakest link, and if this link be too weak to
bear the weight of the facts of the universe, then must the chain be discarded as imperfect and
useless, and another substituted. This fact is not generally mentioned by those speaking and writing
of All being One, or an emanation of the One, but it must be considered and met. If there is a single
thing in the Universe that is "dead"--non-living--lifeless--then the theory must fall. If a thing is
non-living, then the essence of the Absolute cannot be in it--it must be alien and foreign to the
Absolute, and in that case the Absolute cannot be Absolute for there is something outside of itself.
And so it becomes of the greatest importance to examine into the evidences of the presence of Life
in all things, organic or inorganic. The evidence is at hand--let us examine it.

The ancient occultists of all peoples always taught that the Universe was Alive--that there was Life
in everything--that there was nothing dead in Nature--that Death meant simply a change in form in
the material of the dead bodies. They taught that Life, in varying degrees of manifestation and
expression, was present in everything and object, even down to the hardest mineral form, and the
atoms composing that form.

Modern Science is now rapidly advancing to the same position, and each months investigations and
discoveries serve only to emphasize the teachings.

Burbank, that wonderful moulder of plant life, has well expressed this thought, when he says: "All
my investigations have led me away from the idea of a dead material universe tossed about by
various forces, to that of a universe which is absolutely all force, life, soul, thought, or whatever
name we may choose to call it. Every atom, molecule, plant, animal or planet, is only an
aggregation of organized unit forces, held in place by stronger forces, thus holding them for a time
latent, though teeming with inconceivable power. All life on our planet is, so to speak, just on the
outer fringe of this infinite ocean of force. The universe is not half dead, but all alive."

Science today is gazing upon a living universe. She has not yet realized the full significance of what
she has discovered, and her hands are raised as if to shade her eyes from the unaccustomed glare
that is bursting upon her. From the dark cavern of universal dead matter, she has stepped out into
the glare of the noon-day sun of a Universe All-Alive even to its smallest and apparently most inert
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Beginning at Man, the highest form of Life known to us, we may pass rapidly down the scale of
animal life, seeing life in full operation at each descending step. Passing from the animal to the
vegetable kingdom, we still see Life in full operation, although in lessened degrees of expression.
We shall not stop here to review the many manifestations of Life among the forms of plant-life, for
we shall have occasion to mention them in our next lesson, but it must be apparent to all that Life is
constantly manifesting in the sprouting of seeds; the putting forth of stalk, leaves, blossoms, fruit,
etc., and in the enormous manifestation of force and energy in such growth and development. One
may see the life force in the plant pressing forth for expression and manifestation, from the first
sprouting of the seed, until the last vital action on the part of the mature plant or tree.

Besides the vital action observable in the growth and development of plants, we know, of course,
that plants sicken and die, and manifest all other attributes of living forms. There is no room for
argument about the presence of life in the plant kingdom.

But there are other forms of life far below the scale of the plants. There is the world of the bacteria,
microbes, infusoria--the groups of cells with a common life--the single cell creatures, down to the
Monera, the creatures lower than the single cells--the Things of the slime of the ocean bed.

These tiny Things--living Things--present to the sight merely a tiny speck of jelly, without organs of
any kind. And yet they exercise all the functions of life--movement, nutrition, reproduction,
sensation, and dissolution. Some of these elementary forms are all stomach, that is they are all one
organ capable of performing all the functions necessary for the life of the animal. The creature has
no mouth, but when it wishes to devour an object it simply envelopes it--wraps itself around it like
a bit of glue around a gnat, and then absorbs the substance of its prey through its whole body.

Scientists have turned some of these tiny creatures inside out, and yet they have gone on with their
life functions undisturbed and untroubled. They have cut them up into still tinier bits, and yet each
bit lived on as a separate animal, performing all of its functions undisturbed. They are all the same
all over, and all the way through. They reproduce themselves by growing to a certain size, and then
separating into two, and so on. The rapidity of the increase is most remarkable.

Haekel says of the Monera: "The Monera are the simplest permanent cytods. Their entire body
consists of merely soft, structureless plasm. However thoroughly we may examine them with the
help of the most delicate reagents and the strongest optical instruments, we yet find that all the
parts are completely homogeneous. These Monera are therefore, in the strictest sense of the word,
'organisms without organs,' or even in a strict philosophical sense they might not even be called
organisms, since they possess no organs and since they are not composed of various particles. They
can only be called organisms in so far as they are capable of exercising the organic phenomena of
life, of nutrition, reproduction, sensation and movement."

Verworn records an interesting instance of life and mind among the Rhizopods, a very low form of
living thing. He relates that the Difflugia ampula, a creature occupying a tiny shell formed of minute
particles of sand, has a long projection of its substance, like a feeler or tendril, with which it
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for its offspring, which are born by division from the parent body. It grasps the particle of sand by
the feeler, and passes it into its body by enclosing it. Verworn removed the sand from the bottom
of the tank, replacing it by very minute particles of highly colored glass. Shortly afterward he
noticed a collection of these particles of glass in the body of the creature, and a little later he saw a
tiny speck of protoplasm emitted from the parent by separation. At the same time he noticed that
the bits of glass collected by the mother creature were passed out and placed around the body of
the new creature, and cemented together by a substance secreted by the body of the parent, thus
forming a shell and covering for the offspring. This proceeding showed the presence of a mental
something sufficient to cause the creature to prepare a shell for the offspring previous to its
birth--or rather to gather the material for such shell, to be afterward used; to distinguish the proper
material; to mould it into shape, and cement it. The scientist reported that a creature always
gathered just exactly enough sand for its purpose--never too little, and never an excess. And this in
a creature that is little more than a tiny drop of glue!

We may consider the life actions of the Moneron a little further, for it is the lowest form of
so-called "living matter"--the point at which living forms pass off into non-living forms (so-called).
This tiny speck of glue--an organism without organs--is endowed with the faculty called sensation.
It draws away from that which is likely to injure it, and toward that which it desires--all in response
to an elementary sensation. It has the instinct of self-preservation and self-protection. It seeks and
finds its prey, and then eats, digests and assimilates it. It is able to move about by "false-feet," or
bits of its body which it pushes forth at will from any part of its substance. It reproduces itself, as
we have seen, by separation and self-division.

The life of the bacteria and germs--the yeasty forms of life--are familiar to many of us. And yet
there are forms of life still below these. The line between living forms and non-living forms is being
set back further and further by science. Living creatures are now known that resemble the
non-living so closely that the line cannot be definitely drawn.

Living creatures are known that are capable of being dried and laid away for several years, and then
may be revived by the application of moisture. They resemble dust, but are full of life and function.
Certain forms of bacilli are known to Science that have been subjected to degrees of heat and cold
that are but terms to any but the scientific mind.

Low forms of life called Diatoms or "living crystals" are known. They are tiny geometrical forms.
They are composed of a tiny drop of plasm, resembling glue, covered by a thin shell of siliceous or
sandy material. They are visible only through the microscope, and are so small that thousands of
them might be gathered together on the head of a pin. They are so like chemical crystals that it
requires a shrewd and careful observer to distinguish them. And yet they are alive, and perform all
the functions of life.

Leaving these creatures, we enter the kingdom of the crystals, in our search for life. Yes, the
crystals manifest life, as strange as this statement may appear to those who have not followed the
march of Science. The crystals are born, grow, live, and may be killed by chemicals or electricity.
Science has added a new department called "Plasmology," the purpose of which is the study of
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rudimentary sex functioning among crystals. At any rate, crystals are born and grow like living
things. As a recent scientific writer has said: "Crystallization, as we are to learn now, is not a mere
mechanical grouping of dead atoms. It is a birth."

The crystal forms from the mother liquor, and its body is built up systematically, regularly, and
according to a well defined plan or pattern, just as are the body and bones of the animal form, and
the wood and bark of the tree. There is life at work in the growth of the crystal. And not only does
the crystal grow, but it also reproduces itself by separation or splitting-off, just as is the case with
the lower forms of life, just mentioned.

The principal point of difference between the growth and development of the crystals and that of
the lower forms of life referred to is that the crystal takes its nourishment from the outside, and
builds up from its outer surface, while the Monera absorbs its nourishment from within, and grows
outwardly from within. If the crystal had a soft center, and took its nourishment in that way, it
would be almost identical with the Diatom, or, if the Diatom grew from the outside, it would be but
a crystal. A very fine dividing line.

Crystals, like living forms, may be sterilized and rendered incapable of reproduction by chemical
process, or electrical discharges. They may also be "killed" and future growth prevented in this
manner. Surely this looks like "Life," does it not?

To realize the importance of this idea of life among the crystals, we must remember that our
hardest rocks and metals are composed of crystals, and that the dirt and earth upon which we grow
and live are but crumbled rock and miniature crystals. Therefore the very dust under our feet is
alive. There is nothing dead. There is no transformation of "dead matter" into live plant matter, and
then into live animal matter. The chemicals are alive, and from chemical to man's body there is but
a continuous change of shape and form of living matter. Any man's body, decomposing, is again
resolved into chemicals, and the chain begins over again. Merely changes in living forms--that's all,
so far as the bodies are concerned.

Nature furnishes us with many examples of this presence of life in the inorganic world. We have but
to look around to see the truth of the statement that All is Alive. There is that which is known as the
"fatigue of elasticity" in metals. Razors get tired, and require a rest. Tuning forks lose their powers
of vibration, to a degree, and have to be given a vacation. 'Machinery in mills and manufactories
needs an occasional day off. Metals are subject to disease and infection, and have been poisoned
and restored by antidotes. Window glass, especially stained glass, is subject to a disease spreading
from pane to pane.

Men accustomed to handling and using tools and machinery naturally drop into the habit of
speaking of these things as if they were alive. They seem to recognize the presence of "feeling" in
tools or machine, and to perceive in each a sort of "character" or personality, which must be
respected, humored, or coaxed in order to get the best results.

Perhaps the most valuable testimony along these lines, and which goes very far toward proving the
centuries-old theories of the Yogis regarding Omnipresent Life, comes from Prof. J. Chunder Bose,
of the Calcutta University, a Hindu educated in the English Universities, under the best teachers, Page 139
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and who is now a leading scientific authority in the western world, tie has given to the world some
very valuable scientific information along these lines in his book entitled "Response in the Living
and Non-living," which has caused the widest comment and created the greatest interest among
the highest scientific authorities. His experiments along the lines of the gathering of evidence of life
in the inorganic forms have revolutionized the theories of modern science, and have done much to
further the idea that life is present everywhere, and that there is no such thing as dead matter.

He bases his work upon the theory that the best and only true test for the presence of life in matter
is the response of matter to external stimulus. Proceeding from this fundamental theory he has
proven by in-numerable experiments that so-called inorganic matter, minerals, metals, etc., give a
response to such stimulus, which response is similar, if not identical, to the response of the matter
composing the bodies of plants, animals, men.

He devised delicate apparatus for the measurement of the response to the outside stimulus, the
degree, and other evidence being recorded in traces on a revolving cylinder. The tracings or curves
obtained from tin and other metals, when compared with those obtained from living muscle, were
found to be identical. He used a galvanometer, a very delicate and accurate scientific instrument, in
his experiments. This instrument is so finely adjusted that the faintest current will cause a
deflection of the registering needle, which is delicately swung on a tiny pivot. If the galvanometer
be attached to a human nerve, and the end of the nerve be irritated, the needle will register.

Prof. Bose found that when he attached the galvanometer to bars of various metals they gave a
similar response when struck or twisted. The greater the irritation applied to the metal, the greater
the response registered by the instrument. The analogy between the response of the metal and
that of the living muscle was startling. For instance, just as in the case of the living animal muscle or
nerve matter, the response becomes fatigued, so in the case of the metal the curve registered by
the needle became fainter and still fainter, as the bar became more and more fatigued by the
continued irritation. And again, just after such fatigue the muscle would become rested, and would
again respond actively, so would the metal when given a chance to recuperate.

Tetanus due to shocks constantly repeated, was caused and recovered. Metals recorded evidences
of fatigue. Drugs caused identical effects on metals and animals--some exciting; some depressing;
some killing. Some poisonous chemicals killed pieces of metal, rendering them immobile and
therefore incapable of registering records on the apparatus. In some cases antidotes were promptly
administered, and saved the life of the metal.

Prof. Bose also conducted experiments on plants in the same way. Pieces of vegetable matter were
found to be capable of stimulation, fatigue, excitement, depression, poison. Mrs. Annie Besant,
who witnessed some of these experiments in Calcutta, has written as follows regarding the
experiments on plant life: "There is something rather pathetic in seeing the way in which the tiny
spot of light which records the pulses in the plant, travels in ever weaker and weaker curves, when
the plant is under the influence of poison, then falls into a final despairing straight line, and--stops.
One feels as though a murder has been committed--as indeed it has." Page 140
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In one of Prof. Bose's public experiments he clearly demonstrated that a bar of iron was fully as
sensitive as the human body, and that it could be irritated and stimulated in the same way, and
finally could be poisoned and killed. "Among such phenomena," he asks, "how can we draw the line
of demarkation, and say, 'Here the physical ends, and there the physiological begins'? No such
barrier exists." According to his theory, which agrees with the oldest occult theories, by the way,
life is present in every object and form of Nature, and all forms respond to external stimulus, which
response is a proof of the presence of life in the form.

Prof. Bose's great book is full of the most startling results of experiments. He proves that the metals
manifest something like sleep; can be killed; exhibit torpor and sluggishness; get tired or lazy; wake
up; can be roused into activity; may be stimulated, strengthened, weakened; suffer from extreme
cold and heat; may be drugged or intoxicated, the different metals manifesting a different response
to certain drugs, just as different men and animals manifest a varying degree of similar resistance.
The response of a piece of steel subjected to the influence of a chemical poison shows a gradual
fluttering and weakening until it finally dies away, just as animal matter does when similarly
poisoned. When revived in time by an antidote, the recovery was similarly gradual in both metal
and muscle. A remarkable fact is noted by the scientist when he tells us that the very poisons that
kill the metals are themselves alive and may be killed, drugged, stimulated, etc., showing the same
response as in the case of the metals, proving the existence in them of the same life that is in the
metals and animal matter that they influence.

Of course when these metals are "killed" there is merely a killing of the metal as metal--the atoms
and principles of which the metal is composed remaining fully alive and active, just as is the case
with the atom of the human body after the soul passes out--the body is as much alive after death as
during the life of the person, the activity of the parts being along the lines of dissolution instead of
construction in that case.

We hear much of the claims of scientists who announce that they are on the eve of "creating life"
from non-living matter. This is all nonsense--life can come only from life. Life from non-life is an
absurdity. And all Life comes from the One Life underlying All. But it is true that Science has done, is
doing, and will do, something very much like "creating life," but of course this is merely changing
the form of Life into other forms--the lesser form into the higher--just as one produces a plant from
a seed, or a fruit from a plant. The Life is always there, and responds to the proper stimulus and

A number of scientists are working on the problem of generating living forms from inorganic
matter. The old idea of "spontaneous generation," for many years relegated to the scrap-pile of
Science, is again coming to the front. Although the theory of Evolution compels its adherents to
accept the idea that at one time in the past living forms sprung from the non-living (so-called), yet it
has been generally believed that the conditions which brought about this stage of evolution has
forever passed. But the indications now all point to the other view that this stage of evolution is,
and always has been, in operation, and that new forms of life are constantly evolving from the
inorganic forms. "Creation," so-called (although the word is an absurdity from the Yogi point of
view), is constantly being performed. Page 141
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Dr. Charlton Bastian, of London, Eng., has long been a prominent advocate of this theory of
continuous spontaneous generation. Laughed down and considered defeated by the leading
scientific minds of a generation ago, he still pluckily kept at work, and his recent books were like
bombshells in the orthodox scientific camp. He has taken more than five thousand
photo-micrographs, all showing most startling facts in connection with the origin of living forms
from the inorganic. He claims that the microscope reveals the development in a previously clear
liquid of very minute black spots, which gradually enlarge and transform into bacteria--living forms
of a very low order. Prof. Burke, of Cambridge, Eng., has demonstrated that he may produce in
sterilized boullion, subjected to the action of sterilized radium chloride, minute living bodies which
manifest growth and subdivision. Science is being gradually forced to the conclusion that living
forms are still arising in the world by natural processes, which is not at all remarkable when one
remembers that natural law is uniform and continuous. These recent discoveries go to swell the
already large list of modern scientific ideas which correspond with the centuries-old Yogi teachings.
When the Occult explanation that there is Life in everything, inorganic as well as organic, and that
evolution is constant, is heard, then may we see that these experiments simply prove that the
forms of life may be changed and developed--not that Life may be "created."

The chemical and mineral world furnish us with many instances of the growth and development of
forms closely resembling the forms of the vegetable world. What is known as "metallic vegetation,"
as shown in the "lead tree," gives us an interesting example of this phenomenon. The experiment is
performed by placing in a wide-necked bottle a clear acidulated solution of acetate of lead. The
bottle is corked, a piece of copper wire being fastened to the cork, from which wire is suspended a
piece of zinc, the latter hanging as nearly as possible in the center of the lead solution. When the
bottle is corked the copper wire immediately begins to surround itself with a growth of metallic
lead resembling fine moss. From this moss spring branches and limbs, which in turn manifest a
growth similar to foliage, until at last a miniature bush or tree is formed. Similar "metallic
vegetation" may be produced by other metallic solutions.

All of you have noticed how crystals of frost form on window panes in shapes of leaves, branches,
foliage, flowers, blossoms, etc. Saltpeter when subjected to the effect of polarized light assumes
forms closely resembling the forms of the orchid. Nature is full of these resemblances.

A German scientist recently performed a remarkable experiment with certain metallic salts. He
subjected the salts to the action of a galvanic current, when to his surprise the particles of the salts
grouped themselves around the negative pole of the battery, and then grew into a shape closely
resembling a miniature mushroom, with tiny stem and umbrella top. These metallic mushrooms at
first presented a transparent appearance, but gradually developed color, the top of the umbrella
being a bright red, with a faint rose shade on the under surface. The stems showed a pale straw
color. This was most interesting, but the important fact of the experiment consists in the discovery
that these mushrooms have fine veins or tubes running along the stems, through which the
nourishment, or additional material for growth, is transported, so that the growth is actually from
the inside, just as is the case with fungus life. To all intents and purposes, these inorganic metallic
growths were low forms of vegetable his. Page 142
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But the search for Life does not end with the forms of the mineral world as we know them. Science
has separated the material forms into smaller forms, and again still smaller. And if there is Life in
the form composed of countless particles, then must there be Life in the particles themselves. For
Life cannot come from non-Life, and if there be not Life in the particles, the theory of Omnipresent
Life must fan. So we must look beyond the form and shape of the mineral--mist separate it into its
constituent parts, and then examine the parts for indications of Life.

Science teaches us that all forms of matter are compiled of minute particles called molecules. A
molecule is the smallest particle of matter that is possible, unless the chemical atoms composing
the matter fly apart and the matter be resolved into its original elements. For instance, let us take
the familiar instance of a drop of water. Let us divide and subdivide the drop, until at last we get to
the smallest possible particle of water. That smallest possible particle would be a "molecule" of
water. We cannot subdivide this molecule without causing its atoms of hydrogen and oxygen to fly
apart--and then there would be no water at all. Well, these molecules manifest a something called
Attraction for each other. They attract other molecules of the same kind, and are likewise
attracted. The operation of this law of attraction results in the formation of masses of matter,
whether those masses be mountains of solid rock, or a drop of water, or a volume of gas. All
masses of matter are composed of aggregations of molecules, held together by the law of
attraction. This law of attraction is called Cohesion. This Cohesive Attraction is not a mere
mechanical force, as many suppose, but is an exhibition of Life action, manifesting in the presence
of the molecule of a "like" or "love" for the similar molecule. And when the Life energies begin to
manifest on a certain plane, and proceed to mould the molecules into crystals, so that we may see
the actual process under way, we begin to realize very clearly that there is "something at work" in
this building up.

But wonderful as this may seem to those unfamiliar with the idea, the manifestation of Life among
the atoms is still more so. The atom, you will remember, is the chemical unit which, uniting with
other atoms, makes up the molecule. For instance, if we take two atoms of the gas called hydrogen
and one atom of the gas called oxygen, and place them near each other, they will at once rush
toward each other and form a partnership, which is called a molecule of water. And so it is with all
atoms--they are continually forming partnerships, or dissolving them. Marriage and divorce is a part
of the life of the atoms. These evidences of attraction and repulsion among the atoms are receiving
much attention from careful thinkers, and some of the most advanced minds of the age see in this
phenomena the corroboration of the old Yogi idea that there is Life and vital action in the smallest
particles of matter.

The atoms manifest vital characteristics in their attractions and repulsions. They move along the
lines of their attractions and form marriages, and thus combining they form the substances with
which we are familiar. When they combine, remember, they do not lose their individuality and melt
into a permanent substance, but merely unite and yet remain distinct. If the combination be
destroyed by chemical action, electrical discharge, etc., the atoms fly apart, and again live their own
separate lives, until they come in contact with other atoms with which they have affinities, and
form a new union or partnership. In many chemical changes the atoms divorce themselves, each
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atom. The atoms manifest a fickleness and will always desert a lesser attraction for a greater one.
This is no mere bit of imagery, or scientific poetry. It is a scientific statement of the action of atoms
along the lines of vital manifestation.

The great German scientist, Haekel, has said: "I cannot imagine the simplest chemical and physical
processes without attributing the movement of the material particles to unconscious sensation.
The idea of Chemical Affinity consists in the fact that the various chemical elements perceive
differences in the qualities of other elements, and experience pleasure or revulsion at contact with
them, and execute their respective movements on this ground." He also says: "We may ascribe the
feeling of pleasure or pain (satisfaction or dissatisfaction) to all atoms, and thereby ascribe the
elective affinities of chemistry to the attraction between living atoms and repulsion between hating
atoms." He also says that "the sensations in animal and plant life are connected by a long series of
evolutionary stages with the simpler forms of sensation that we find in the inorganic elements, and
that reveal themselves in chemical affinity." Naegli says: "If the molecules possess something that is
related, however distantly, to sensation, it must be comfortable for them to be able to follow their
attractions and repulsions, and uncomfortable for them when they are forced to do otherwise."

We might fill page after page with quotations from eminent thinkers going to prove the correctness
of the old Yogi teachings that Life is Omnipresent. Modern Science is rapidly advancing to this
position, leaving behind her the old idea of "dead matter." Even the new theories of the
electron--the little particles of electrical energy which are now believed to constitute the base of
the atom--does not change this idea, for the electrons manifest attraction, and response thereto,
and form themselves into groups composing the atom. And even if we pass beyond matter into the
mystical Ether which Science assumes to be the material base of things, we must believe that there
is life there too, and that as Prof. Dolbear says: "The Ether has besides the function of energy and
motion, other inherent properties, out of which could emerge, under proper circumstances, other
phenomena, such as life, mind, or whatever may be in the substratum," and, that as Prof. Cope has
hinted, that the basis of Life lies back of the atoms and may be found in the Universal Ether.

Some scientists go even further, and assert that not only is Life present in everything, but that Mind
is present where Life is. Verily, the dreams of the Yogi fathers are coming true, and from the ranks
of the materialists are coming the material proofs of the spiritual teachings. Listen to these words
from Dr. Saleeby, in his recent valuable scientific work, "Evolution, the Master Key." He says:

"Life is potential in matter; life-energy is not a thing unique and created at a particular time in the
past. If evolution be true, living matter has been evolved by natural processes from matter which is,
apparently, not alive. But if life is potential in matter, it is a thousand times more evident that Mind
is potential in Life. The evolutionist is impelled to believe that Mind is potential in matter. (I adopt
that form of words for the moment, but not without future criticism.) The microscopic cell, a
minute speck of matter that is to become man, has in it the promise and the germ of mind. May we
not then draw the inference that the elements of mind are present in those chemical
elements--carbon, oxygen, hydrogen, nitrogen, sulphur, phosphorus, sodium, potassium,
chlorine--that are found in the cell. Not only must we do so, but we must go further, since we know
that each of these elements, and every other, is built up out of one invariable unit, the electron,
and we must therefore assert that Mind is potential in the unit of Matter--the electron itself... It is Page 144
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to assert the sublime truth first perceived by Spinoza, that Mind and Matter are the warp and woof
of what Goethe called 'the living garment of God.' Both are complementary expressions of the
Unknowable Reality which underlies both."

There is no such thing as non-vital attraction or repulsion. All inclinations for or against another
object, or thing, is an evidence of Life. Each thing has sufficient life energy to enable it to carry on
its work. And as each form advances by evolution into a higher form, it is able to have more of the
Life energy manifest through it. As its material machinery is built up, it becomes able to manifest a
greater and higher degree of Life. It is not that one thing has a low life, or another a high life--this
cannot be, for there is but One Life. It is like the current of electricity that is able to run the most
delicate machinery or manifest a light in the incandescent lamp. Give it the organ or machinery of
manifestation, and it manifests--give it a low form, and it will manifest a low degree--give it a high
form, and it will manifest a high degree. The same steam power runs the clumsy engine, or the
perfect apparatus which drives the most delicate mechanism. And so it is with the One Life--its
manifestations may seem low and clumsy, or high and perfect--but it all depends upon the material
or mental machinery through which it works. There is but One Life, manifesting in countless forms
and shapes, and degrees. One Life underlying All--in All.

From the highest forms of Life down through the animal, vegetable and mineral kingdoms, we see
Life everywhere present--Death an illusion. Back of all visible forms of material life there is still the
beginnings of manifested life pressing forward for expression and manifestation. And underneath
all is the Spirit of Life--longing, striving, feeling, acting.

In the mountain and the ocean--the flower and the tree--the sunset--the dawn--the suns--the
stars--all is Life--manifestations of the One Life. Everything is Alive, quick with living force, power,
action; thrilling with vitality; throbbing with feeling; filled with activity. All is from the One Life--and
all that is from the One Life is Alive. There is no dead substance in the Universe--there can be
none--for Life cannot Die. All is Alive. And Life is in All.

Carry with you this Central Thought of the Lesson:

CENTRAL THOUGHT: There is but One Life, and its manifestations comprise all the forms and shapes
of the Universe. From Life comes but Life--and Life can come only from Life. Therefore we have the
right to expect that all manifestations of the One Life should be Alive. And we are not mocked in
such belief. Not only do the highest Occult Teachings inform us that Everything is Alive, but Modern
Science has proven to us that Life is present everywhere--even in that which was formerly
considered dead matter. It now sees that even the atom, and what lies back of the atom, is charged
with Life Energy and Action. Forms and shapes may change, and do change--but Life remains
eternal and infinite. It cannot Die--for it is LIFE.

Peace be with thee. Page 145
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In our first lesson of this series, we stated that among the other qualities and attributes that we
were compelled, by the laws of our reason, to think that the Absolute possessed, was that of
Omnipotence or All-Power. In other words we are compelled to think of the One as being the
source and fount of all the Power there is, ever has been, or ever can be in the Universe. Not only,
as is generally supposed, that the Power of the One is greater than any other Power,--but more
than this, that there can be no other power, and that, therefore, each and every, any and all
manifestations or forms of Power, Force or Energy must be a part of the great one Energy which
emanates from the One.

There is no escape from this conclusion, as startling as it may appear to the mind unaccustomed to
it. If there is any power not from and of the One, from whence comes such power, for there is
nothing else outside of the One? Who or what exists outside of the One that can manifest even the
faintest degree of power of any kind? All power must come from the Absolute, and must in its
nature be but one.

Modern Science has recognized this truth, and one of its fundamental principles is the Unity of
Energy--the theory that all forms of Energy are, at the last, One. Science holds that all forms of
Energy are interchangeable, and from this idea comes the theory of the Conservation of Energy or
Correlation of Force.

Science teaches that every manifestation of energy, power, or force, from the operation of the law
of gravitation, up to the highest form of mental force is but the operation of the One Energy of the

Just what this Energy is, in its inner nature, Science does not know. It has many theories, but does
not advance any of them as a law. It speaks of the Infinite and Eternal Energy from which all things
proceed, but pronounces its nature to be unknowable. But some of the latter-day scientists are
veering around to the teachings of the occultists, and are now hinting that it is something more
than a mere mechanical energy. They are speaking of it in terms of mind. Wundt, the German
scientist, whose school of thought is called voluntarism, considers the motive-force of Energy to be
something that may be called Will. Crusius, as far back as 1744 said: "Will is the dominating force of
the world." And Schopenhauer based his fascinating but gloomy philosophy and metaphysics upon
the underlying principle of an active form of energy which he called the Will-to-Live, which he
considered to be the Thing-in-Itself, or the Absolute. Balzac, the novelist, considered a something
akin to Will, to be the moving force of the Universe. Bulwer advanced a similar theory, and made
mention of it in several of his novels.

This idea of an active, creative Will, at work in the Universe, building up; tearing down; replacing;
repairing; changing--always at work--ever active--has been entertained by numerous philosophers
and thinkers, under different names and styles. Some, like Schopenhauer have thought of this Will
as the final thing--that which took the place of God--the First Cause. But others have seen in this
Will an active living principle emanating from the Absolute or God, and working in accordance with
the laws impressed by Him upon it. In various forms, this latter idea is seen all through the history
of philosophical thought. Cudsworth, the English philosopher, evolved the idea of a something Page 146
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called the "Plastic Nature," which so closely approaches the Yogi idea of the Creative Will, that we
feel justified in quoting a passage from his book. He says:

"It seems not so agreeable to reason that Nature, as a distinct thing from the Deity, should be quite
superseded or made to signify nothing, God Himself doing all things immediately and miraculously;
from whence it would follow also that they are all done either forcibly and violently, or else
artificially only, and none of them by any inward principle of their own.

"This opinion is further confuted by that slow and gradual process that in the generation of things,
which would seem to be but a vain and idle pomp or a trifling formality if the moving power were
omnipotent; as also by those errors and bungles which are committed where the matter is inept
and contumacious; which argue that the moving power be not irresistible, and that Nature is such a
thing as is not altogether incapable (as well as human art) of being sometimes frustrated and
disappointed by the indisposition of matter. Whereas an omnipotent moving power, as it could
dispatch its work in a moment, so would it always do it infallibly and irresistibly, no ineptitude and
stubbornness of matter being ever able to hinder such a one, or make him bungle or fumble in

"Wherefore, since neither all things are produced fortuitously, or by the unguided mechanism of
matter, nor God himself may be reasonably thought to do all things immediately and miraculously,
it may well be concluded that there is a Plastic Nature under him, which, as an inferior and
subordinate instrument, doth drudgingly execute that part of his providence which consists in the
regular and orderly motion of matter; yet so as there is also besides this a higher providence to be
acknowledged, which, presiding over it, doth often supply the defects of it, and sometimes
overrules it, forasmuch as the Plastic Nature cannot act electively nor with discretion."

The Yogi Philosophy teaches of the existence of a Universal Creative Will, emanating from the
Absolute--infilled with the power of the Absolute and acting under established natural laws, which
performs the active work of creation in the world, similar to that performed by "Cudsworth's Plastic
Nature," just mentioned. This Creative Will is not Schopenhauer's Will-to-Live. It is not a
Thing-in-itself, but a vehicle or instrument of the Absolute. It is an emanation of the mind of the
Absolute--a manifestation in action of its Will--a mental product rather than a physical, and, of
course, saturated with the life-energy of its projector.

This Creative Will is not a mere blind, mechanical energy or force--it is far more than this. We can
explain it only by referring you to the manifestation of the Will in yourself. You wish to move your
arm, and it moves. The immediate force may seem to be a mechanical force, but what is back of
that force--what is the essence of the force? The Will! All manifestations of energy--all the causes of
motion--all forces--are forms of the action of the Will of the One--the Creative Will--acting under
natural laws established by the One, ever moving, acting, forcing, urging, driving, leading. We do
not mean that every little act is a thought of the moment on the part of the Absolute, and a
reaching out of the Will in obedience to that thought. On the contrary, we mean that the One set
the Will into operation as a whole, conceiving of laws and limitations in its action, the Will
constantly operating in obedience to that conception, the results manifesting in what we call
natural law; natural forces, etc. Besides this, the Absolute is believed to manifest its Will specially Page 147
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upon occasions; and moreover permits its Will to be applied and used by the individual wills of
individual Egos, under the general Law and laws, and plan of the One.

But you must not suppose that the Will is manifested only in the form of mechanical forces,
cohesion, chemical attraction, electricity, gravitation, etc.

It does more than this. It is in full operation in all forms of life, and living things. It is present
everywhere. Back of all forms of movement and action, we find a moving cause--usually a Pressure.
This is true of that which we have been calling mechanical forces, and of all forms of that which we
call Life Energy. Now, note this, this great Pressure that you will observe in all Life Action, is the
Creative Will--the Will Principle of the One--bending toward the carrying out of the Great Plan of

Look where we will, on living forms, and we may begin to recognize the presence of a certain
creative energy at work--building up; moulding, directing; tearing down; replacing, etc.--always
active in its efforts to create, preserve and conserve life. This visible creative energy is what the
Yogi Philosophy calls "the Creative Will," and which forms the subject of this lesson. The Creative
Will is that striving, longing, pressing forward, unfolding, progressing evolutionary effort, that all
thoughtful people see in operation in all forms of life--throughout all Nature. From the lowest to
the highest forms of life, the Effort, Energy, Pressure, may be recognized in action, creating,
preserving, nourishing, and improving its forms. It is that Something that we recognize when we
speak of "Nature's Forces" at work in plant growth and animal functioning. If you will but keep the
word and idea--"NATURE"--before you, you will be able to more clearly form the mental concept of
the Creative Will. The Creative Will is that which you have been calling "Nature at Work" in the
growth of the plant; the sprouting of the seed; the curling and reaching of the tendril; the
fertilization of the blossoms, etc. You have seen this Will at work, if you have watched growing

We call this energy "the Creative Will," because it is the objective manifestation of the Creative
Energy of the Absolute--Its visible Will manifested in the direction of physical life. It is as much Will
in action, as the Will that causes your arm to move in response to its power. It is no mere chance
thing, or mechanical law--it is life action in operation.

This Creative Will not only causes movement in completed life, but all movement and action in life
independent of the personal will of its individual forms. All the phenomena of the so-called
Unconscious belong to it. It causes the body to grow; attends to the details of nourishment,
assimilation, digestion, elimination, and all of the rest. It builds up bodies, organs, and parts, and
keeps them in operation and function.

The Creative Will is directed to the outward expression of Life--to the objectification of Life. You
may call this energy the "Universal Life Energy" if you wish, but, to those who know it, it is a
Will--an active, living Will, in full operation and power, pressing forward toward the manifestation
of objective life.

The Creative Will seems to be filled with a strong Desire to manifest. It longs to express itself, and
to give birth to forms of activity. Desire lies under and in all forms of its manifestations. The ever Page 148
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present Desire of the Creative Will causes lower forms to be succeeded by higher forms--and is the
moving cause of evolution--it is the Evolutionary Urge itself, which ever cries to its manifestations,
"Move on; move upward."

In the Hindu classic, the "Mahabarata," Brahma created the most beautiful female being ever
known, and called her Tillotama. He presented her in turn to all the gods, in order to witness their
wonder and admiration. Siva's desire to behold her was so great that it developed in him four faces,
in succession, as she made the tour of the assembly; and Indra's longing was so intense that his
body became all eyes. In this myth may be seen exemplified the effect of Desire and Will in the
forms of life, function and shape--all following Desire and Need, as in the case of the long neck of
the giraffe which enables him to reach for the high branches of the trees in his native land; and in
the long neck and high legs of the fisher birds, the crane, stork, ibis, etc.

The Creative Will finds within itself a desire to create suns, and they are formed. It desired planets
to revolve around the suns, and they were thrown off in obedience to the law. It desired plant life,
and plant life appeared, working from higher to lower form. Then came animal life, from nomad to
man. Some of the animal forms yielded to the desire to fly, and wings appeared gradually, and we
called it bird-life. Some felt a desire to burrow in the ground, and lo! came the moles, gophers, etc.
It wanted a thinking creature, and Man with his wonderful brain was evolved. Evolution is more
than a mere survival of the fittest; natural selection, etc. Although it uses these laws as tools and
instruments, still back of them is that insistent urge--that ever-impelling desire--that ever-active
Creative Will. Lamark was nearer right than Darwin when he claimed that Desire was back of it all,
and preceded function and form. Desire wanted form and function, and produced them by the
activity of the Creative Will.

This Creative Will acts like a living force--and so it is indeed--but it does not act as a reasoning,
intellectual Something, in one sense--instead it manifests rather the "feeling," wanting, longing,
instinctive phase of mind, akin to those "feelings" and resulting actions that we find within our
natures. The Will acts on the Instinctive Plane.

Evolution shows us Life constantly pressing forward toward higher and still higher forms of
expression. The urge is constantly upward and onward. It is true that some species sink out of sight
their work in the world having been done, but they are succeeded by other species more in
harmony with their environment and the needs of their times. Some races of men decay, but others
build on their foundations, and reach still greater heights.

The Creative Will is something different from Reason or Intellect. But it underlies these. In the
lower forms of life, in which mind is in but small evidence, the Will is in active operation,
manifesting in Instinct and Automatic Life Action, so called. It does not depend upon brains for
manifestation--for these lowly forms of life have no brains--but is in operation through every part
of the body of the living thing.

Evidences of the existence of the Creative Will acting independently of the brains of animal and
plant life may be had in overwhelming quantity if we will but examine the life action in the lower
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The testimony of the investigators along the lines of the Evolutionary school of thought, show us
that the Life Principle was in active operation in lowly animal and plant life millions of years before
brains capable of manifesting Thought were produced. Haekel informs us that during more than
half of the enormous time that has elapsed since organic life first became evident, no animal
sufficiently advanced to have a brain was in existence. Brains were evolved according to the law of
desire or necessity, in accordance with the Great Plan, but they were not needed for carrying on
the wonderful work of the creation and preservation of the living forms. And they are not today.
The tiny infant, and the senseless idiot are not able to think intelligently, but still their life functions
go on regularly and according to law, in spite of the absence of thinking brains. And the life work of
the plants, and of the lowly forms of animal life, is carried on likewise. This wonderful thing that we
call Instinct is but another name for the manifestation of the Creative Will which flows from the
One Life, or the Absolute.

Even as far down the scale of life as the Monera, we may see the Creative Will in action. The
Monera are but tiny bits of slimy, jelly-like substances--mere specks of glue without organs of any
kind, and yet they exercise the organic phenomena of life, such as nutrition, reproduction,
sensation and movement, all of which are usually associated with an organized structure. These
creatures are incapable of thought in themselves, and the phenomenon is due to the action of the
Will through them. This Instinctive impulse and action is seen everywhere, manifesting upon Higher
and still higher lines, as higher forms of organisms are built up.

Scientists have used the term, "Appetency," defining it as, "the instinctive tendency of living
organisms to perform certain actions; the tendency of an unorganized body to seek that which
satisfies the wants of its organism." Now what is this tendency? It cannot be an effort of reason, for
the low form of life has nothing with which to reason. And it is impossible to think of "purposive
tendency" without assuming the existence of mental power of some kind. And where can such a
power be located if not in the form itself? When we consider that the Will is acting in and through
all forms of Life, from highest to lowest--from Moneron to Man--we can at once recognize the
source of the power and activity. It is the Great Life Principle--the Creative Will, manifesting itself.

We can perhaps better form an idea of the Creative Will, by reference to its outward and visible
forms of activity. We cannot see the Will itself--the Pressure and the Urge--but we can see its action
through living forms. Just as we cannot see a man behind a curtain, and yet may practically see him
by watching the movements of his form as he presses up against the curtain, so may we see the
Will by watching it as it presses up against the living curtain of the forms of life. There was a play
presented on the American stage a few years ago, in which one of the scenes pictured the place of
departed spirits according to the Japanese belief. The audience could not see the actors
representing the spirits, but they could see their movements as they pressed up close to a thin silky
curtain stretched across the stage, and their motions as they moved to and fro behind the curtain
were plainly recognized. The deception was perfect, and the effect was startling. One almost
believed that he saw the forms of formless creatures. And this is what we may do in viewing the
operation of the Creative Will--we may take a look at the moving form of the Will behind the
curtain of the forms of the manifestation of life. We may see it pressing and urging here, and
bending there--building up here, and changing there--always acting, always moving, striving, doing, Page 150
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in response to that insatiable urge and craving, and longing of its inner desire. Let us take a few
peeps at the Will moving behind the curtain!

Commencing with the cases of the forming of the crystals, as spoken of in our last lesson, we may
pass on to plant life. But before doing so, it may be well for us to take a parting look at the Will
manifesting crystal forms. One of the latest scientific works makes mention of the experiments of a
scientist who has been devoting much attention to the formation of crystals, and reports that he
has noticed that certain crystals of organic compounds, instead of being built up symmetrically, as
is usual with crystals, were "enation-morphic," that is, opposed to each other, in rights and lefts,
like hands or gloves, or shoes, etc. These crystals are never found alone, but always form in pairs.
Can you not see the Will behind the curtain here?

Let us look for the Will in plant-life. Passing rapidly over the wonderful evidences in the cases of the
fertilization of plants by insects, the plant shaping its blossom so as to admit the entrance of the
particular insect that acts as the carrier of its pollen, think for a moment how the distribution of the
seed is provided for. Fruit trees and plants surround the seed with a sweet covering, that it may be
eaten by insect and animal, and the seed distributed. Others have a hard covering to protect the
seed or nut from the winter frosts, but which covering rots with the spring rains and allows the
germ to sprout. Others surround the seed with a fleecy substance, so that the wind may carry it
here and there and give it a chance to find a home where it is not so crowded. Another tree has a
little pop-gun arrangement, by means of which it pops its seed to a distance of several feet.

Other plants have seeds that are covered with a burr or "sticky" bristles, which enables them to
attach themselves to the wool of sheep and other animals, and thus be carried about and finally
dropped in some spot far away from the parent plant, and thus the scattering of the species be
accomplished. Some plants show the most wonderful plans and arrangements for this scattering of
the seed in new homes where there is a better opportunity for growth and development, the
arrangements for this purpose displaying something very much akin to what we would call
"ingenuity" if it were the work of a reasoning mind. There are plants called cockle-burs whose
seed-pods are provided with stickers in every direction, so that anything brushing against them is
sure to pick them up. At the end of each sticker is a very tiny hook, and these hooks fasten
themselves tightly into anything that brushes against it, animal wool, hair, or clothing, etc. Some of
these seeds have been known to have been carried to other quarters of the globe in wool, etc.,
there to find new homes and a wider field.

Other plants, like the thistle, provide their seed with downy wings, by which the wind carries them
afar to other fields. Other seeds have a faculty of tumbling and rolling along the ground to great
distances, owing to their peculiar shape and formation. The maple provides its seed with a peculiar
arrangement something like a propeller screw, which when the wind strikes the trees and looses
the seed, whirls the latter through the air to a distance of a hundred yards or more. Other seeds are
provided with floating apparatus, which enables them to travel many miles by stream or river, or
rain washes. Some of these not only float, but actually swim, having spider-like filaments, which
wriggle like legs, and actually propel the tiny seed along to its new home. A recent writer says of
these seeds that "so curiously lifelike are their movements that it is almost impossible to believe
that these tiny objects, making good progress through the water, are really seeds, and not insects." Page 151
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The leaves of the Venus' Fly-trap fold upon each other and enclose the insect which is attracted by
the sweet juice on the leaf, three extremely sensitive bristles or hairs giving the plant notice that
the insect is touching them. A recent writer gives the following description of a peculiar plant. He
says: "On the shores of Lake Nicaragua is to be found an uncanny product of the vegetable kingdom
known among the natives by the expressive name of 'the Devil's Noose.' Dunstan, the naturalist,
discovered it long ago while wandering on the shores of the lake. Attracted by the cries of pain and
terror from his dog, he found the animal held by black sticky bands which had chafed the skin to
bleeding point. These bands were branches of a newly-discovered carnivorous plant which had
been aptly named the 'land octopus.' The branches are flexible, black, polished and without leaves,
and secrete a viscid fluid."

You have seen flowers that closed when you touched them. You remember the Golden Poppy that
closes when the sun goes down. Another plant, a variety of orchid, has a long, slender, flat stem, or
tube, about one-eighth of an inch thick, with an opening at the extreme end, and a series of fine
tubes where it joins the plant. Ordinarily this tube remains coiled up into a spiral, but when the
plant needs water (it usually grows upon the trunks of trees overhanging swampy places) it slowly
uncoils the little tube and bends it over until it dips into the water, when it proceeds to suck up the
water until it is filled, when it slowly coils around and discharges the water directly upon the plant,
or its roots. Then it repeats the process until the plant is satisfied. When the water is absent from
under the plant the tube moves this way and that way until it finds what it wants--just like the trunk
of an elephant. If one touches the tube or trunk of the plant while it is extended for water, it shows
a great sensitiveness and rapidly coils itself up. Now what causes this life action? The plant has no
brains, and cannot have reasoned out this process, nor even have acted upon them by reasoning
processes. It has nothing to think with to such a high degree. It is the Will behind the curtain,
moving this way and that way, and doing things.

There was once a French scientist named Duhamel. He planted some beans in a
cylinder--something like a long tomato can lying on its side. He waited until the beans began to
sprout, and send forth roots downward, and shoots upward, according to nature's invariable rule.
Then he moved the cylinder a little--rolled it over an inch or two. The next day he rolled it over a
little more. And so on each day, rolling it over a little each time. Well, after a time Duhamel shook
the dirt and growing beans out of the cylinder, and what did he find? This, that the beans in their
endeavor to grow their roots downward had kept on bending each day downward; and in their
endeavor to send shoots upward, had kept on bending upward a little each day, until at last there
had been formed two complete spirals--the one spiral being the roots ever turning downward, and
the other the shoots ever bending upward. How did the plant know direction? What was the
moving power. The Creative Will behind the curtain again, you see!

Potatoes in dark cellars have sent out roots or sprouts twenty and thirty feet to reach light. Plants
will send out roots many feet to reach water. They know where the water and light are, and where
to reach them. The tendrils of a plant know where the stake or cord is, and they reach out for it and
twine themselves around it. Unwind them, and the next day they are found again twined around it.
Move the stake or cord, and the tendril moves after it. The insect-eating plants are able to
distinguish between nitrogenous and non-nitrogenous food, accepting the one and rejecting the Page 152
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other. They recognize that cheese has the same nourishing properties as the insect, and they
accept it, although it is far different in feeling, taste, appearance and every other characteristic
from their accustomed food.

Case after case might be mentioned and cited to show the operation of the Will in plant-life. But
wonderful as are many of these cases, the mere action of the Will as shown in the growing of the
plant is just as wonderful. Just imagine a tiny seed, and see it sprout and draw to itself the
nourishment from water, air, light and soil, then upward until it becomes a great tree with bark,
limbs, branches, leaves, blossoms, fruit and all. Think of this miracle, and consider what must be the
power and nature of that Will that causes it.

The growing plant manifests sufficient strength to crack great stones, and lift great slabs of
pavement, as may be noticed by examining the sidewalks of suburban towns and parks. An English
paper prints a report of four enormous mushrooms having lifted a huge slab of paving stone in a
crowded street overnight. Think of this exhibition of Energy and Power. This wonderful faculty of
exerting force and motion and energy is fundamental in the Will, for indeed every physical change
and growth is the result of motion, and motion arises only from force and pressure. Whose force,
energy, power and motion? The Will's!

On all sides of us we may see this constant and steady urge and pressure behind living forces, and
inorganic forms as well--always a manifestation of Energy and Power. And all this Power is in the
Will--and the Will is but the manifestation of the All-Power--the Absolute. Remember this.

And this power manifests itself not only in the matter of growth and ordinary movements, but also
in some other ways that seem quite mysterious to even modern Science. How is it that certain birds
are able to fly directly against a strong wind, without visible movement of their wings? How do the
buzzards float in the air, and make speed without a motion of the wing? What is the explanation of
the movements of certain microscopic creatures who lack organs of movement? Listen to this
instance related by the scientist Benet. He states that the Polycystids have a most peculiar manner
of moving--a sort of sliding motion, to the right or left, upward, backward, sideways, stopping and
starting, fast or slow, as it wills. It has no locomotive organs, and no movement can be seen to take
place in the body from within or without. It simply slides. How?

Passing on to the higher animal life--how do eggs grow into chickens? What is the power in the
germ of the egg? Can the germ think, and plan, and move, and grow into a chicken? Or is the Will at
work there? And what is true in this case, is true of the birth and growth of all animal life--all animal
life develops from a single germ cell. How, and Why?

There is a mental energy resident in the germ cell--of this there can be no doubt. And that mental
energy is the Creative Will ever manifesting. Listen to these words from Huxley, the eminent
scientist. He says:

"The student of Nature wonders the more and is astonished the less, the more conversant he
becomes with her operations; but of all the perennial miracles she offers to his inspection, perhaps
the most worthy of his admiration is the development of a plant or of an animal from its embryo.
Examine the recently laid egg of some common animal, such as a salamander or a newt. It is a Page 153
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minute spheroid in which the best microscope will reveal nothing but a structureless sac, enclosing
a glairy fluid, holding granules in suspension. But strange possibilities lie dormant in that semi-fluid
globule. Let a moderate supply of warmth reach its watery cradle, and the plastic matter undergoes
changes so rapid, and so purposelike in their succession, that one can only compare them to those
operated by a skilled modeller upon a formless lump of clay. As with an invisible trowel, the mass is
divided and subdivided into smaller and smaller portions, until it is reduced to an aggregation of
granules not too large to build withal the finest fabrics of the nascent organism. And, then, it is as if
a delicate finger traced out the line to be occupied by the spinal column, and moulded the contour
of the body; pinching up the head at one end, the tail at the other, and fashioning flank and limb
into due salamanderine proportions, in so artistic a way that, after watching the process hour by
hour, one is almost involuntarily possessed by the notion that some more subtle aid to vision than
the achromatic lens would show the hidden artist, with his plan before him, striving with skilful
manipulation to perfect his work.

"As life advances and the young amphibian ranges the waters, the terror of his insect
contemporaries, not only are the nutritious particles supplied by its prey (by the addition of which
to its frame growth takes place) laid down, each in its proper spot, and in due proportion to the
rest, as to reproduce the form, the color, and the size, characteristic of the parental stock; but even
the wonderful powers of reproducing lost parts possessed by these animals are controlled by the
same governing tendency. Cut off the legs, the tail, the jaws, separately or all together, and as
Spallanzani showed long ago, these parts not only grow again, but the new limb is formed on the
same type as those which were lost. The new jaw, or leg, is a newt's, and never by any accident
more like that of a frog's."

In this passage from Huxley one may see the actual working of the Creative Will of the
Universe,--moving behind the curtain--and a very thin curtain at that. And this wonderful work is
going on all around us, all the time. Miracles are being accomplished every second--they are so
common that we fail to regard them.

And in our bodies is the Will at work? Most certainly. What built you up from single cell to
maturity? Did you do it with your intellect? Has not every bit of it been done without your
conscious knowledge? It is only when things go wrong, owing to the violation of some law, that you
become aware of your internal organs. And, yet, stomach and liver, and heart and the rest have
been performing their work steadily--working away day and night, building up, repairing,
nourishing, growing you into a man or woman, and keeping you sound and strong. Are you doing
this with your reason or with your personal will? No, it is the great Creative Will of the Universe,
Universe,--the expression of the purpose and power of the One, working in and through you. It is
the One Life manifesting in you through its Creative Will.

And not only is this all. The Creative Will is all around us in every force, energy and principle. The
force that we call mental power is the principle of the Will directed by our individual minds. In this
statement we have a hint of the great mystery of Mental Force and Power, and the so-called
Psychic Phenomena. It also gives us a key to Mental Healing. This is not the place to go into detail
regarding these phases--but think over it a bit. This Will Power of the Universe, in all of its forms
and phases, from Electricity to Thought-power, is always at the disposal of Man, within limits, and Page 154
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subject always to the laws of the Creative Will of the Universe. Those who acquire an
understanding of the laws of any force may use it. And any force may be used or misused.

And the nearer in understanding and consciousness that we get to the One Life and Power, the
greater will be our possible power, for we are thus getting closer and closer to the source of All
Power. In these lessons we hope to be able to tell you how you may come into closer touch with
this One Life of which you and all living things are but forms, shapes and channels of expression,
under the operation of the Creative Will.

We trust that this lesson may have brought to your minds the realization of the Oneness of All--the
fact that we are all parts of the one encircling unity, the heart-throbs and pulsations of which are to
be felt even to the outer edge of the circle of life--in Man, in Monad, in Crystal, in Atom. Try to feel
that inner essence of Creative Will that is within yourselves, and endeavor to realize your complete
inner unity in it, with all other forms of life. Try to realize, as some recent writer has expressed it,
"that all the living world is but mankind in the making, and that we are but part of the All." And also
remember that splendid vistas of future unfoldment spread themselves out before the gaze of the
awakened soul, until the mind fails to grasp the wondrous sight.

We will now close this lesson by calling your attention to its


There is but One Power in the Universe--One Energy--One Force. And that Power, Energy and Force
is a manifestation of the One Life. There can be no other Power, for there is none other than the
One from whom Power may come. And there can be no manifestation of Power that is not the
Power of the One, for no other Power can be in existence. The Power of the One is visible in its
manifestations to us in the natural laws and forces of Nature--which we call the Creative Will. This
Creative Will is the inner moving power, urge and pressure behind all forms and shapes of Life. In
atom, and molecule; in monad, in cell, in plant, in fish, in animal, in man,--the Life Principle or
Creative Will is constantly in action, creating, preserving, and carrying on life in its functions. We
may call this Instinct or Nature, but it is the Creative Will in action. This Will is back of all Power,
Energy, or Force--be it physical, mechanical or mental force. And all Force that we use, consciously
or unconsciously, comes from the One Great Source of Power. If we could but see clearly, we would
know that back of us is the Power of the Universe, awaiting our intelligent uses, under the control
of the Will of the All. There is nothing to be afraid of, for we are manifestations of the One Life,
from which all Power proceeds, and the Real Self is above the effect, for it is part of the Cause. But
over and above--under and behind--all forms of Being, Matter, Energy, Force and Power, is the
ABSOLUTE--ever Calm; ever Peaceful; ever Content. In knowing this it becomes us to manifest that
spirit of absolute Trust, Faith and Confidence in the Goodness and Ultimate Justice of That which is
the only Reality there is.

Peace be with you. Page 155
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In our First Lesson of this series we spoke of the One Reality underlying all Life. This One Reality was
stated to be higher than mind or matter, the nearest term that can be applied to it being "Spirit."
We told you that it was impossible to explain just what "Spirit" is, for we have nothing else with
which to compare or describe it, and it can be expressed only in its own terms, and not in the terms
applicable to its emanations or manifestations. But, as we said in our First Lesson, we may think of
"Spirit" as meaning the "essence" of Life and Being--the Reality underlying Universal Life, and from
which the latter emanates.

In the Second Lesson we stated that this "Spirit," which we called "The Absolute," expressed itself
in the Universal Life, which Universal Life manifested itself in countless forms of life and activity. In
the same lesson we showed you that the Universe is alive--that there is not a single dead thing in
it--that there can be no such thing as a dead object in the Universe, else the theory and truth of the
One underlying Life must fall and be rejected. In that lesson we also showed you that even in the
world of inorganic things there was ever manifest life--in every atom and particle of inorganic
matter there is the universal life energy manifesting itself, and in constant activity.

In the Third Lesson, we went still further into this phase of the general subject, and showed you
that the Creative Will--that active principle of the Universal Life--was ever at work, building up new
forms, shapes and combinations, and then tearing them down for the purpose of rebuilding the
material into new forms, shapes, and combinations. The Creative Will is ever at work in its threefold
function of creating, preserving and destroying forms--the change, however, being merely in the
shape and form or combination, the real substance remaining unchanged in its inner aspect,
notwithstanding the countless apparent changes in its objective forms. Like the great ocean the
depths of which remain calm and undisturbed, and the real nature of which is unchanged in spite of
the waves, and billows of surface manifestation, so does the great ocean of the Universal Life
remain unchanged and unaltered in spite of the constant play of the Creative Will upon the surface.
In the same lesson we gave you many examples of the Will in action--of its wondrous workings in
the various forms of life and activity--all of which went to show you that the One Power was at
work everywhere and at all times.

In our next lesson--the Fifth Lesson--we shall endeavor to make plain to you the highest teachings
of the Yogi Philosophy regarding the One Reality and the Many Manifestations--the One and the
Many--how the One apparently becomes Many--that great question and problem which lies at the
bottom of the well of truth. In that lesson we shall present for your consideration some
fundamental and startling truths, but before we reach that point in our teachings, we must fasten
upon your mind the basic truth that all the various manifestations of Life that we see on all hands in
the Universe are but forms of manifestation of One Universal Life which is itself an emanation of
the Absolute.

Speaking generally, we would say to you that the emanation of the Absolute is in the form of a
grand manifestation of One Universal Life, in which the various apparent separate forms of Life are
but centers of Energy or Consciousness, the separation being more apparent than real, there being
a bond of unity and connection underlying all the apparently separated forms. Unless the student Page 156
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gets this idea firmly fixed in his mind and consciousness, he will find it difficult to grasp the higher
truths of the Yogi Philosophy. That all Life is One, at the last,--that all forms of manifestation of Life
are in harmonious Unity, underlying--is one of the great basic truths of the Yogi Teaching, and all
the students of that philosophy must make this basic truth their own before they may progress
further. This grasping of the truth is more than a mere matter of intellectual conception, for the
intellect reports that all forms of Life are separate and distinct from each other, and that there can
be no unity amidst such diversity. But from the higher parts of the mind comes the message of an
underlying Unity, in spite of all apparent diversity, and if one will meditate upon this idea he will
soon begin to realize the truth, and will feel that he, himself, is but a center of consciousness in a
great ocean of Life--that he and all other centers are connected by countless spiritual and mental
filaments--and that all emerge from the One. He will find that the illusion of separateness is but "a
working fiction of the Universe," as one writer has so aptly described it--and that All is One, at the
last, and underlying all is One.

Some of our students may feel that we are taking too long a path to lead up to the great basic
truths of our philosophy, but we who have traveled The Path, and know its rocky places and its
sharp turns, feel justified in insisting that the student be led to the truth gradually and surely,
instead of attempting to make short cuts across dangerous ravines and canyons. We must insist
upon presenting our teachings in our own way--for this way has been tested and found good. We
know that every student will come to realize that our plan is a wise one, and that he will thank us
for giving him this gradual and easy approach to the wondrous and awful truth which is before us.
By this gradual process, the mind becomes accustomed to the line of thought and the underlying
principles, and also gradually discards wornout mental sheaths which have served their purposes,
and which must be discarded because they begin to weigh heavily upon the mind as it reaches the
higher altitudes of The Path of Attainment. Therefore, we must ask you to consider with us, in this
lesson, some further teachings regarding the Unity of Life.

All the schools of the higher Oriental thought, as well as many of the great philosophical minds of
the Western world, have agreed upon the conception of the Unity of Life--the Oneness of All Life.
The Western thinkers, and many of the Eastern philosophers arrived at this conclusion by means of
their Intellectual powers, greatly heightened and stimulated by concentration and meditation,
which latter process liberated the faculties of the Spiritual Mind so that it passed down knowledge
to the Intellect, which then seized upon the higher knowledge which it found within itself, and
amplified and theorized upon the same. But among the Eastern Masters there are other sources of
information open, and from these sources come the same report--the Oneness and Unity of
Universal Life. These higher sources of information to which we have alluded, consist of the
knowledge coming from those Beings who have passed on to higher planes of Life than ours, and
whose awakened spiritual faculties and senses enable them to see things quite plainly which are
quite dark to us. And from these sources, also, comes the message of the Oneness of Life--of the
existence of a wonderful Universal Life including all forms of life as we know it, and many forms and
phases unknown to us--many centers in the great Ocean of Life. No matter how high the source of
inquiry, the answer is the same--"All Life is One." And this One Life includes Beings as much higher
than ourselves, as we are higher than the creatures in the slime of the ocean-bed. Included in it are
beings who would seem as archangels or gods to us, and they inform that beyond them are still Page 157
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higher and more radiant creatures, and so on to infinity of infinities. And yet all are but centers of
Being in the One Life--all but a part of the great Universal Life, which itself is but an emanation of
The Absolute.

The mind of man shrinks back appalled from the contemplation of such wonders, and yet there are
men who dare to attempt to speak authoritatively of the attributes and qualities of "God," as if He,
the Absolute, were but a magnified man. Verily, indeed, "fools rush in where angels fear to tread,"
as the poet hath said.

Those who will read our next lesson and thus gain an idea of the sublime conception of the
Absolute held by the Yogi teachers may shudder at the presumption of those mortals who dare to
think of the Absolute as possessing "attributes" and "qualities" like unto the meanest of things in
this his emanated Universe. But even these spiritual infants are doing well--that is, they are
beginning to think, and when man begins to think and question, he begins to progress. It is not the
fact of these people's immature ideas that has caused these remarks on our part, but rather their
tendency to set up their puny conceptions as the absolute truth, and then insisting upon forcing
these views upon the outer world of men, whom they consider "poor ignorant heathen." Permit
each man to think according to his light--and help him by offering to share with him the best that
you possess--but do not attempt to force upon him your own views as absolute truth to be
swallowed by him under threat of damnation or eternal punishment. Who are you that dares to
speak of punishment and damnation, when the smell of the smoke of the hell of materialism is still
upon your robes. When you realize just what spiritual infants you still are--the best of you--you will
blush at these things. Hold fast to the best that you know--be generous to others who seem to wish
to share your knowledge--but give without blame or feeling of superiority--for those whom you
teach today may be your teachers tomorrow--there are many surprises of this kind along The Path.
Be brave and confident, but when you begin to feel puffed up by your acquirement of some new bit
of knowledge, let your prayer--our prayer, for we too are infants--be, "Lord, be merciful unto me, a

The above words are for us, the students of the Yogi Philosophy--the teachers of the same--for
human nature is the same in spite of names, and we must avoid the "vanity of vanities"--Spiritual
Pride and Arrogance--that fault which has sent many a soul tumbling headlong from a high position
on The Path, and compelled it to again begin the journey, chastened and bruised. The fall of Lucifer
has many correspondences upon the occult plane, and is, indeed, in itself an allegorical illustration
of just this law. Remember, always, that you are but a Centre in the Ocean of Life, and that all
others are Centres in the same ocean, and that underlying both and all of you is the same calm bed
of Life and Knowledge, the property of all. The highest and the lowest are part of the same One
Life--each of you has the same life blood flowing through your veins--you are connected with every
other form of life, high or low, with invisible bonds, and none is separate from another. We are
speaking, of course, to the personalities of the various students who are reading these words. The
Real Self of each is above the need of such advice and caution, and those who are able to reach the
Real Self in consciousness have no need for these words, for they have outlived this stage of error.
To many, the consciousness of the One Life--the Universal Life--in which all are centres of
consciousness and being--has come gradually as a final step of a long series of thought and Page 158
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reasoning, aided by flashes of truth from the higher regions of the mind. To others it has come as a
great illumination, or flash of Truth, in which all things are seen in their proper relations and
positions to each other, and all as phases of being in the One. The term "Cosmic Consciousness,"
which has been used in the previous series of these lessons, and by other writers, means this
sudden flash of "knowing" in which all the illusionary dividing lines between persons and things are
broken down and the Universal Life is seen to be actually existent as One Life. To those who have
reached this consciousness by either route just mentioned--or by other routes--there is no sense of
loss of individuality or power or strength. On the contrary there is always a new sense of increased
power and strength and knowing--instead of losing Individuality, there is a sense of having found it.
One feels that he has the whole Universe at his back, or within him, rather than that he has lost his
identity in the great Ocean of Life.

While we are speaking of this phase of the subject, we should like to ask you if you have ever
investigated and inquired into the real meaning of the much-used word "Individuality?" Have you
ever looked up its origin and real meaning, as given by the standard authorities? We are sure that
many of you have no real idea of the actual meaning of the term, as strange as this statement may
appear to you at first glance. Stop now, and define the word to yourself, as you have been
accustomed to think of it. Ninety-five people of a hundred will tell you that it means something like
"a strong personality." Let us see about this.

Webster defines the word "Individual" as follows: "Not divided, or not to be divided; existing as one
distinct being or object; single; one." The same authority informs us that the word arises from the
Latin word individuus, meaning "indivisible; not divisible." Does not this help you to gain a clearer
idea of the Individuality that knows itself to be a Centre of Consciousness in the One Life, rather
than a separate, puny, insignificant thing apart from all other centres or forms of Life, or the source
of Life? We think it will help to clear your mind of some of the fog that has not as yet lifted itself.

And while we are on the subject of definitions, let us take a little look at the word "Personality,"
that is generally believed to be a synonym of "Individuality," and is often so used. Webster tells us
that the word "Person" originated from the Latin word persona, meaning "a mask used by actors,"
which word in turn arose from two other words, per, meaning "through," and sonare, meaning "to
sound," the two combined words meaning "to sound through." The same authority informs us that
the archaic meaning of the word was "a character or part, as in a play; an assumed character." If
you will think of Personality as "a mask used by an actor," or as "a part in a play," or as something
used to "sound through" or to speak through, by the real Individual behind the mask of Personality,
then perhaps you will see a little further into the Mystery of Personality and Individuality.

Oh, dear students, be not deceived by the mask of Personality which you may happen to be
wearing at this moment, or by the masks which are worn by those around you. Realize that back of
your mask is the great Individual--the Indivisible--the Universal Life, in which you are a centre of
consciousness and activity. This does not wipe out your identity--instead it gives you a greater and
grander identity. Instead of your sinking into a Nirvana of extinction of consciousness, your
consciousness so enlarges as you unfold, that you will in the end feel your identity to be the identity
of the Universe. Instead of your gaining Nothingness, you gain Allness. All spiritual growth and
unfoldment gives you a constantly increasing sense of relationship with, and agreement with, the Page 159
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All. You grow into Allness as you unfold. Be not deceived by this chatter about Nothingness, and
loss of Individuality, in the Oriental thought, although some of the presentations of its teachings
may so seem to mean at first reading. Remember always that Personality is the mask, and
Individuality the Real One.

You have often heard persons, claiming to be acquainted with the teachings of Theosophy and
other expositions of the Oriental Wisdom Religion (including our own presentation), asserting that
the Oriental mind was ever bent upon attaining a final stage of Nothingness or Extinction in
Nirvana. In addition to what we have said, and to what we shall say on this subject, let us quote
from the inspired writer of the "Secret Doctrine" (a standard Theosophical work) when she says, in
that work on page 286, Vol. I: "Is this annihilation, as some think? ... To see in Nirvana annihilation,
amounts to saying of a man plunged in a sound, dreamless sleep--one that leaves no impression on
the physical memory and brain, because the sleeper's Higher Self is in its original state of absolute
consciousness during these hours--that he too is annihilated. The latter simile answers only to one
side of the question--the most material; since reabsorption is by no means such a dreamless sleep,
but, on the contrary, absolute existence, an unconditional unity, or a state, to describe which
human language is absolutely and hopelessly inadequate... Nor is the individuality--nor even the
essence of the personality, if any be left behind--lost because re-absorbed." As J. Wm. Lloyd says, in
connection with the above quotation, "This seems conclusive proof that Theosophy does not regard
Nirvana as annihilation, but as an infinite enlargement of consciousness." And we would add that
this is true not only as regards the Nirvana of the Theosophist, but also of the consciousness of the
Unity of Life--the Universal Life. This too is not annihilation of individual consciousness, but an
"infinite enlargement of consciousness" as this Western writer Lloyd has so well expressed it.

The very consciousness of Life that every man feels within him, comes not from something
belonging exclusively to himself as a separate or personal thing. On the contrary, it belongs to his
Individuality, not to his Personality, and is a phase of his consciousness or "awareness" of his
relation to the One Universal Life which underlies his existence, and in which he is a center of
consciousness. Do you grasp this idea? If not, meditate and concentrate upon it, for it is important.
You must learn to feel the Life within you, and to know that it is the Life of the great Ocean of
Universal Life upon the bosom of which you are borne as a centre of consciousness and energy. In
this thought there is Power, Strength, Calm, Peace, and Wisdom. Acquire it, if you are wise. It is
indeed a Gift from the Gods.

In this lesson we are not attempting to build up your idea of the Unity of Life by a series of
arguments taken from a world of phenomena in which separateness and non-Unity is apparent. No
such arguments would suffice, for it would be like trying to prove the existence and laws of color to
a man born blind, by arguments taken from his world of darkness. On the contrary we are
appealing to that region of the mind in which is stored the capacity for intuitively apprehending
truth. We are endeavoring to speak in tones which will awaken a similar vibration in that part of
your mentality, and if these vibrations be started into being, then will you be able to feel and know
the truth, and then will your Intellect eagerly seize upon the new idea that it finds within itself, and
will proceed to apply the same to the various problems that have been bothering you in the past. Page 160
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This consciousness of Unity must come from the higher regions of the mind, for the Intellect alone
knows it not,--it is out of its field. Just as one may not know that the earth is round by means of his
senses which report quite the contrary, but may and does know this truth by abstract reasoning
and higher intellectual effort; so may one know the truth that All Life is indeed One, at the last, and
underlying, by the higher faculties of the mind, although his senses and ordinary intellectual
processes fail to so inform him. The senses cannot inform man that the earth is round, because
they cannot see it as a whole, but only in part--while the higher reasoning faculties are able to
visualize the earth as a whole, and know it must be round. And the Intellect, in its ordinary field can
see only separateness, and cannot report Oneness, but the Higher Mind sees Life as a Whole, and
knows it to be One. And it is the Higher Mind that we are trying to bring into the field of
consciousness in the appeal to you in this lesson. We trust that we may be successful--in fact we
know that we shall be so, in many cases, for we know that the field is ready for the sowing of the
seed--and that the call has been heard, and the message passed on to us to answer the call--else
these words would not have been written.

The consciousness of the Unity of Life is something that must be experienced before the truth may
be realized. It is not necessary for one to wait until he acquire full Cosmic Consciousness before he
may realize, at least partially, the Oneness of All Life, for he may unfold gradually into the Cosmic
Knowing, experiencing at each stage a fuller conception of the underlying Unity of Life, in which he
is a centre of consciousness and manifestation. But there must be at least a partial unfoldment
before one is able to feel the sense of Unity. To those who have not unfolded sufficiently to gain at
least a glimmering of the truth, everything appears separate from every other thing, and there is no
Unity of All. It is as if every leaf on a mighty tree were to consider itself a being separate and
distinct from everything else in the world, failing to perceive its connection with the branch or limb,
and tree, and its unity in being with every other leaf on the tree. After a bit the unfolding
consciousness of the leaf enables it to perceive the stem that connects it with the twig. Then it
begins to realize certain relationships, and feels its vital connection with the twig and the few other
leaves attached to the same twig. Later on, it unfolds sufficiently to perceive that certain other
leaf-bearing twigs are connected with the same branch, and it learns to feel its relationship with all
twigs and leaves springing from that branch. Then again, a little later on, it begins to realize that
other branches spring from the same limb as its branch, and the sense of relationship and dawning
Unity begins to widen still further. And so it goes on, until at last, the tiny leaflet realizes that the
life of the tree is the life of all of its parts--limbs, branches, twigs, leaves, blossoms, fruit, seed, etc.,
and that it, itself, is but a centre of expression in the One Life of the tree. Does the leaf feel less
important and real from this discovery? We should say assuredly not, for it must feel that behind its
tiny form and limited strength is the strength and vitality of the entire organism of the tree. It must
know that the tree is ever at work extracting nourishment from the earth, air, and water, and
transmitting that nourishment to its every part, including our little friend the leaflet. It knows that
the sap will rise in the Spring to renew the manifestations of life, and it knows that although its
leafy form may wither and die, still the essence of its life--its real Life--does not die but remains
ever active and strong awaiting its chance for future expression and re-embodiment. Of course this
figure of the leaf and the tree fails us if we attempt to carry it very far, but it will give us at least a
partial idea of the relationship between the life of the person, and the One Life. Page 161
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Some of the Oriental teachers have illustrated this idea to their students by various familiar
examples and figures of speech. Some bid the student hold up his hand, and then point out to him
that each finger is apparently separate and distinct if one does not look down to where it joins the
hand. Each finger, if it had consciousness, might well argue that it was a separate individual, having
no relationship with any other finger. It might prove this to its own satisfaction, and to that of its
listeners, by showing that it could move itself without stirring the other fingers. And so long as its
consciousness was confined to its upper two joints it would remain under the illusion of
separateness. But when its consciousness at last permeated the depths of its being, it would find
that it emerged from the same hand from which also sprung the other fingers, and that its real life
and power was vested in the hand rather than in itself, and that although apparently separate and
independent, it was really but a part of the hand. And when its consciousness, through the
consciousness of the hand, broadened and widened, it would perceive its relationship with, and
interdependence with, the whole body, and would also recognize the power of the brain, and its
mighty Will.

Another favorite illustration of the Eastern teachers is the stream of water flowing over a rocky
bed. They point to the stream before it comes to a rocky place, and show the chela (student) that it
is One. Then they will move a little way down the stream and show him how the rocks and stones
divide the stream into countless little streams, each of which might imagine itself a separate and
distinct stream, until later on it again joins the main united stream, and finds that it was but a form
of expression of the One.

Another illustration that is frequently used by the teachers, is that which bids the student consider
himself as a minute cell, or "little-life" as the Hindus call it, in a body. It may be a cell in the blood
performing the office of a carrier or messenger, or it may be a working cell in one of the organs of
the body; or it may be a thinking cell in the brain. At any rate, the cell manifests capacity for
thought, action and memory--and a number of secondary attributes quite wonderful in the way.
(See "Hatha Yoga," Chapter XVIII.) Each cell might well consider itself as a separate individual--in a
certain sense it does. It has a certain degree of something akin to consciousness, enabling it to
perform its work correctly and properly, and is called upon at times to manifest something like
judgment. It may well be excused for thinking of itself as a "person" having a separate life. The
analogy between its illusions and that of the man when seen by a Master, is very close. But we
know that the life of the cell is merely a centre of expression of the life of the body--that its
consciousness is merely a part of the consciousness of the mind animating the body. The cell will
die and apparently perish, but the essence of it will remain in the life of the person whose body it
occupied, and nothing really dies or perishes. Would the cell feel any less real if it knew that behind
its Personality as a cell, there was the Individuality of the Man--that its Real Self was the Man, not
the cell? Of course, even this figure of speech can be carried only so far, and then must stop, for the
personality of the man, when it is dissolved, leaves behind it an essence which is called Character,
which becomes the property of the Ego and which accompanies it into after life according to the
Law of Karma, of which we shall speak in future lessons. But back even of these attributes of
Personality, is the Ego which exists in spite of Personality, and lives on and on throughout many
Personalities, and yet learning the lessons of each, until at last it rises above Personality and enters
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Still another favorite illustration of the Hindu teachers is that of the sun beating down upon the
ocean and causing a portion of the water to rise in the form of vapor. This vapor forms clouds
which spread all over the earth, and which eventually condense in the form of rain drops, dew, etc.
This rain and dew form streams, rivers, etc., and sooner or later every drop finds its way back to
Mother Ocean which is its Real Self. Separate though the dewdrop be, yet it is a part of the Ocean,
no matter how far distant it may be, and the attraction of the Ocean will surely, and without fail,
draw it back to its bosom. And the dewdrop, if it could know the truth, would be so much happier
and stronger, and braver if it could know that it was superior to accident, time and space, and that
it could not escape its own good, and that nothing could prevent its final triumph and victory when
at last "the dewdrop glides into the shining sea." How cheerfully it could have met its many changes
of form. and the incidents of its journey, if it could have gotten rid of the illusion of separateness,
and knew that instead of being a tiny insignificant dewdrop it was a part of the Mighty Ocean--in
fact that its Real Self was that Ocean itself--and that the Ocean was continually drawing it toward it,
and that the many changes, up and down, were in response to that mighty power of attraction
which was slowly but irresistibly drawing it back Home to Rest, Peace, and Power.

As valuable as are all these illustrations, examples, and figures of speech, still all must of necessity
fall short of the truth in the case of the Soul of Man--that wondrous something which has been
built up by the Absolute after aeons and aeons of time, and which is destined to play an important
part in the great Cosmic Drama which it has pleased the Absolute to think into existence. Drawing
its Life from the Universal Life, it has the roots of its being still further back in the Absolute itself, as
we shall see in the next lesson. Great and wonderful is it all, and our minds are but illy fitted to
receive the truth, and must be gradually accustomed to the glare of the Sun. But it will come to
all--none can escape his glorious destiny.

The Oriental writings are full of allusions to the underlying Oneness, in fact the entire Oriental
philosophies rest upon it. You may find it everywhere if you will but look for it. The experience of
Cosmic Consciousness, which is naught but a sudden or gradual "awareness" of the underlying
Unity of Life, is evidenced everywhere in the Upanishads, that wonderful series of teachings in the
Hindu classics. Every writer in the collection gives his evidence regarding this awareness of Unity
and Oneness, and the experiences and mental characteristics arising from the same. The following
quotations will give an idea of the prevalence of this thought:

"He that beholds all beings in the Self, and the Self in all things, he never turns away from it."

"When to a man who understands, the Self has become all things, what sorrow, what trouble, can
there be to him who once beheld that unity."

The Hindu father explains to his son that the One Life is in all forms and shapes, points out object
after object, saying to the boy: "Tat tuam asi, Thou art that; That thou art."

And the Mystics have added their testimony to that of others who have experienced this
consciousness. Plotinus said: "Knowledge has three degrees: opinion, science, and illumination. The
last is absolute knowledge founded upon the identity of the knowing mind with the known object." Page 163
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And Eckhardt, the German mystic, has told his pupils that: "God is the soul of all things. He is the
light that shines in us when the veil is rent."

And Tennyson, in his wonderful verse describing the temporary lifting of the veil for him, has
described a phase of Cosmic Consciousness in the following words:

"For knowledge is the swallow on the lake

That sees and stirs the surface-shadow there,

But never yet hath dippt into the abysm,

The Abysm of all Abysms, beneath, within

The blue of sky and sea, the green of earth,

And in the million-millionth of a grain

Which cleft and cleft again for evermore

And ever vanishing, never vanishes. . .

And more, my son, for more than once when I

Sat all alone, revolving in myself

That word which is the symbol of myself,

The mortal symbol of the Self was loosed,

And past into the Nameless, as a cloud

Melts into Heaven. I touched my limbs, the limbs

Were strange, not mine--and yet no shadow of doubt,

But utter clearness, and through loss of Self

The gain of such large life as matched with ours

Were Sun to spark, unshadowable in words,

Themselves but shadows of a shadow-world."

And not only among the mystics and poets is this universal truth experienced and expressed, but
among the great philosophers of all ages may we find this teaching of the Unity of Life originally
voiced in the Upanishads. The Grecian thinkers have expressed the thought; the Chinese
philosophers have added their testimony; the modern philosophers, Spinoza, Berkeley, Kant, Hegel,
Schopenhauer, Hartman, Ferrier, Royce, although differing widely in their theories, all have
expressed as a fundamental truth the Unity of Life--a One Life underlying. The basic teachings of
the Vedas are receiving confirmation at the hands of Modern Science, which while calling itself Page 164
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Rationalistic and inclining to a Materialistic conception of the Universe, still finds itself compelled to
say, "At the last, All is One."

And in nearly every human soul there is a secret chamber in which the text of this knowledge lies
hidden, and in the rare moments in which the chamber door is opened in response to poetry,
music, art, deep religious feeling, or those unaccountable waves of uplift that come to all, the truth
is recognized for the moment and the soul feels at peace and is content in the feeling that it is at
harmony with the All. The sense of Beauty, however expressed, when keenly experienced, has a
tendency to lift us out of our consciousness of separateness into another plane of mind in which
the keynote is Unity. The higher the human feeling, the nearer is the conscious realization of the
underlying Unity.

This realization of the Unity of Life--the Oneness of Life--the Great Life--even when but faintly
experienced, renders Life quite a different thing to the person. He feels no longer that he is a mere
"part" of something that may be destroyed--or that he is a tiny personal something, separate from
and opposed to all the rest of the Universe--but that he is, instead, a Unit of Expression--a Centre of
Consciousness--in the Great One Life. He realizes that he has the Power, and Strength, and Life, and
Wisdom of the Whole back of him, upon which he may learn to draw as he unfolds. He realizes that
he is at Home, and that he cannot be thrust out, for there is no outside of the All. He feels within
himself the certainty of infinite Life and being, for his Life is the all Life, and that cannot die. The
petty cares, and worries, and griefs, and pains of everyday personal life are seen for what they are,
and they cease to threaten and dominate him as of old. He sees the things of personality as merely
the costume and trappings of the part in the play of life that he is acting out, and he knows that
when he discards them he will still be "I."

When one really feels the consciousness of the One Life underlying, he acquires a confident trust
and faith, and a new sense of freedom and strength comes to him, for is he not indeed delivered
from the bondage of fear that has haunted him in his world of separateness. He feels within him
the spiritual pulse of the Universal Life, and at once he thrills with a sense of new-found power and
being. He becomes reconciled with Life in all its phases, for he knows these things as but temporary
phases in the working out of some great Universal plan, instead of things permanent and fixed and
beyond remedy. He begins to feel the assurance of Ultimate Justice and God, and the old ideas of
Injustice and Evil begin to fade from him. He who enters into the consciousness of the Universal
Life, indeed enters into a present realization of the Life Everlasting. All fear of being "lost" or
"eternally damned" fades away, and one instinctively realizes that he is "saved" because he is of the
One Life and cannot be lost. All the fear of being lost arises from the sense of illusion of
separateness or apartness from the One Life. Once the consciousness of Unity is gained, fear drops
from the soul like a wornout garment.

When the idea and consciousness of the Unity takes possession of one, he feels a new sense of
cheerfulness and optimism entirely different from any other feeling that he has ever experienced.
He loses that distrust and hardness which seems to cling to so many in this age who have arrived at
the Intellectual stage of development, and have been unable to progress further. A new sense of
peace and harmony comes to one, and illuminates his entire character and life. The bitterness
engendered by the illusion of separateness is neutralized by the sweetness of the sense of Unity. Page 165
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When one enters into this consciousness he finds that he has the key to many a riddle of life that
has heretofore perplexed him. Many dark corners are illuminated--many hard sayings are made
clear. Paradoxes become understandable truths, and the pairs of opposites that dwell in all
advanced intellectual conceptions, seem to bend around their ends and form themselves into a

To the one who understands the Unity, all Nature seems akin and friendly. There is no sense of
antagonism or opposition--everything is seen to fit into its place, and work out its appointed task in
the Universal plan. All Nature is seen to be friendly, when properly understood, and Man regains
that sense of harmonious environment and at-home-ness that he lost when he entered the stage of
self-consciousness. The lower animal and the children feel this Unity, in their poor imperfect way,
but Man lost this Paradise when he discovered Good and Evil. But Paradise Lost becomes Paradise
Regained when Man enters into this new stage of consciousness. But unlike the animal or child,
which instinctively feels the Unity, the awakened soul of man possesses the Unity consciousness,
coupled with intelligent comprehension, and unfolding spiritual power. He has found that which he
lost, together with the accumulated interest of the ages. This new kingdom of Consciousness is
before the race. All must enter into it in time--all will enter into it--many are entering into it now, by
gradual stages. This dawning sense of Unity is that which is causing the spiritual unrest which is
now agitating the world, and Which in time will bring the race to a realization of the Fatherhood of
God and the Brotherhood of Man, and his kinship to Every Living Thing. We are entering into this
new cycle of human unfoldment, and the greatest changes are before the race. Ye who read these
words are in the foremost ranks of the new dispensation, else you would not be interested in this
subject. You are the leaven which is designed to lighten the heavy mass of the world-mind. Play
well your parts. You are not alone. Mighty forces and great Intelligences are behind you in the
work. Be worthy of them. Peace be with you.

Carry with you the Central Thought of this lesson:

CENTRAL THOUGHT. There is but One Life--a Universal Life--in the world. This One Life is an
emanation from the Absolute. It infills all forms, shapes and manifestations of Life, and is the Real
Life that each imagines to be his personal property. There is but One--and you are centres of
consciousness and expression in that One. There is a Unity and Harmony which becomes apparent
to those who enter into the consciousness of the One Life. There is Peace and Calm in the thought.
There is Strength and Power in the knowledge. Enter ye into your Kingdom of Power--possess
yourselves of your Birthright of Knowledge. In the very center of your being you will find a holy of
holies in which dwells the Consciousness of the One Life, underlying. Enter into the Silence of the
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As we have stated in previous Lessons, all philosophies which thinkers have considered worthy of
respect, find their final expression of Truth in the fundamental thought that there is but One
Reality, underlying all the manifold manifestations of shape and form. It is true that the
philosophers have differed widely in their conception of that One, but, nevertheless, they have all
agreed upon the logical necessity of the fundamental conception that there is, at least, but One
Reality, underlying All.

Even the Materialists have conceded this conclusion, and they speak and think of a something
called "Matter," as the One--holding that, inherent in Matter, is the potentiality of all Life. The
school of Energists, holding that Matter in itself is non-existent, and that it is merely a mode of
manifestation of a something called "Energy," asserts that this something called Energy is One,
fundamental, real, and self-sufficient.

The various forms of Western religious thought, which hold to the various conceptions of a
Personal Deity, also hold to a Oneness, inasmuch as they teach that in the beginning there was
God, only, and that all the Universe has been created by Him. They do not go into details regarding
this creation, and, unlike the Oriental teachers, they fail to distinguish between the conception of
the creation of shape and form, on the one hand; and the creation of the substance of these shapes
and forms, on the other hand. But, even accepting the premises of these people who hold to the
Personal Deity conception, it will be seen that the Reason requires the acceptance of one or two
ideas, viz., (1) That the Deity created the substance of these shapes and forms from Nothing; or else
(2) that he created them out of his own substance--out of Himself, in fact. Let us consider, briefly,
these two conceptions.

In the first conception, i.e., Creation from Nothing, we are brought face to face with an
impregnable obstacle, inasmuch as the human reason positively refuses to think of Anything
coming from Nothing. While it is perfectly true that the finite human mind cannot undertake to
limit the powers of the Infinite; or to insist that the possibilities of the Divine Power must be
measured and limited by the finite power of Man--still it must hearken to the report of its own
highest faculties, and say "I cannot Think it," or else blindly accept the teachings of other finite
minds which are equally unable to "Think it," and which have no superior sources of information.
The Infinite Power has endowed us with reasoning faculties, and evidently expects us to use them
to their full capacity--else the gift were a mockery. And in the absence of information from higher
sources than the Reason, we must use the Reason in thinking of this matter, or else refuse to think
of it at all.

In view of the above thought, let us then consider the report of the Reason, regarding this matter,
And then, after having done so, let us apply the test of this report of the Reason, to the highest
teaching of the Yogi Philosophy, and see how the latter stands the test. And, after having done this,
we will apply the test of the Higher Consciousness to the same teachings. Remember this always,
that while there is knowledge that transcends Reason--that is knowledge that comes from the
Higher Regions of the Mind--still even such information of the Spiritual Mind does not run contrary Page 167
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to Reason, although it goes beyond it. There is harmony between the Spiritual Mind and the
Highest Reason.

Returning to the consideration of the matter of Creation of Substance from Nothing, we again
assert that the Reason is unable to think of the creation of Something from Nothing. It finds the
statement unthinkable, and contrary to all the laws of thought. It is true that the Reason is
compelled to accept as a final truth, many things that it cannot understand by reason of its
finitude--but this is not one of them. There is no logical necessity for the Reason to accept any such
conception as this--there is no warrant in the Reason for any such theory, idea or conclusion. Let us
stop here, for a moment, and examine into this difference--it may help us to think clearer,

We find it impossible to understand the fact of the Infinite Being having always existed--and Being
without Cause. We find it impossible to conceive of the nature of an Eternal, Causeless, and Infinite
Being--to conceive the nature of, such a Being, remember.

But, while this is so, still our Reason, by its own laws, compels us to think that there must be such a
Being, so long as we think at all. For, if we think at all, we must think of there being a Fundamental
Reality--and we must think of that Reality as being without Cause (because there can be no Cause
for the First Cause); and we must think of that Reality as being Eternal (because It could not have
sprung into Being from Nothing, and therefore must have always been); and we must think of that
Reality as Infinite (because there is nothing outside of Itself to limit It). Think over this statement for
a moment--until you grasp it fully.

But there is no such necessity, or compulsion, in the case of the question of Creation from
Nothingness. On the contrary, the necessity and compulsion is all the other way. Not only is the
Reason unable to think of Creation from Nothing--not only does all its laws forbid it to hold such a
conception--but, more than this, it finds within itself a conception, full-grown and potent, which
contradicts this idea. It finds within itself the strong certainty that Whatever Really Is has Always
Been, and that all transient and finite shapes, forms, and manifestations, must proceed from that
which is Real, Infinite, Causeless, and Infinite--and moreover must be composed of the substance of
that Reality, for there is nothing else Real from which they could have been composed; and their
composition from Nothing is unthinkable, for Nothing is Nothing, and always will be Nothing.
"Nothing" is merely a name of denial of existence--an absolute denial of substantiality of any
degree, kind or form--an absolute denial of Reality. And from such could come only Nothing--from
Nothing, Nothing comes.

Therefore, finding within itself the positive report that All, and Anything There Is, must be
composed of the Substance of the Reality, the Reason is compelled to think that the Universe is
composed of the Substance of the One Reality--whether we call that One Reality, by the name of
The Absolute; or whether we call it God. We must believe that from this Absolute-God all things in
the Universe have flown out, or been emanated, rather than created--begotten, rather than
"made." Page 168
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This does not mean the Pantheistic idea that the Universe is God--but rather that God, while
existing separate and apart from His Universe, in his Essence, and Being, is nevertheless in His
Universe, and His Universe in Him. And this, no matter what conception of God or Deity is had--or
whether one thinks of The Absolute as Principle. The Truth is the same--Truth no matter by what
names it is called, or by what misconception it is surrounded. The Truth is that One is in All, and All
is in One--such is the report of the highest Reason of Man--such is the report of the Illumined--such
is the Highest Teachings that have come down to the race from the great souls that have trodden
The Path of Attainment.

And now let us submit the Yogi Philosophy to these conceptions, and reports of the Reason. And let
us discover just what more the Yogi Philosophy has to say concerning the nature of the Substance
of the Divine, which infills all Life--and how it solves the Riddle of the Sphinx, concerning the One in
All; and All in One. We hope to show you that the Riddle is capable of solution, and that the old
Yogi teachers have long ago grasped that for which the human mind has ever sought. This phase of
the Teachings is the highest, and it is usually hinted at, rather than expressed, in the writings on the
subject--owing to danger of confusion and misconception. But in these Lessons we shall speak the
Truth plainly, and without fear--for such is the Message which has been given us to deliver to our
students--and we will perform the Right action, leaving the Result, or Fruits of the Action, where it
belongs, according to the higher teachings found in the "Bhagavad Gita," and in the Higher
Teachings of the Yogi Philosophy.

The fundamental Truth embedded in the Wisdom-Philosophies of the East--the Higher Yogi
Teachings--is the impregnable doctrine of the One Self in the many selves--the many selves in the
One Self. This fundamental Truth underlies all the Oriental Philosophies which are esoteric in their

Notwithstanding the crude and often repulsive conceptions and practices of the masses of the
people who represent the exoteric, or popular, phase of the teachings (and these two phases are to
be found in all regions) still there is always this Inner Doctrine of the One Self, to be found to those
who look for it.

Not only is this true among the Hindus; but even among the Mahommedans, of all countries, there
is an Inner Circle of Mystics, known as the Sufis, holding to this Truth. And the inner teachings of
the philosophies of all ages and races, have held likewise. And the highest thought of the
philosophers of the Western races, has found refuge in this idea of the Over-soul, or Universal Self.
But, it is only among the Yogis that we find an attempt made to explain the real nature of the
manifestation of the One in Many--the holding of the Many forms in the One Self.

Before proceeding to the consideration of how the One becomes as Many, as expounded by the
Higher Yogi Teachings, it becomes necessary to speak of a matter upon which there has been much
confusion and misunderstanding, not only on the part of the students of various Oriental
Philosophies, but also upon the part of some of the teachers themselves. We allude to the
connection between THE ONE--THE ABSOLUTE--in Its ESSENCE--and that which has been called the
One Life; the Universal Life, etc. Page 169
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Many writers have spoken of the Universal Life, and The One, as being identical--but such is a
grievous error, finding no warrant in the Highest Yogi Teachings. It is true that all living forms dwell
in, and are infilled with the Universal Life--that All Life is One. We have taught this truth, and it is
indeed Truth, without qualification. But there is still a Higher Truth--the Highest Truth, in fact--and
that is, that even this Universal Life is not the One, but, instead, is in itself a manifestation of, and
emanation from, THE ONE. There is a great difference here---see that you perceive and understand
it, before proceeding further.

THE ONE--THE ABSOLUTE--according to the Highest Teachings, is Pure Spirit, and not Life, Mind, or
Being as we understand them in our finite and mortal expressions. But, still all Life, Mind, and
Being, as we understand them, spring from, flow from, and emanate from, the One--and more than
this, may be spoken of as reflections of the Life, Mind, and Being of The One, if we may be
permitted to apply the names of finite manifestations to the Infinite Reality.

So, the Highest Teaching is that the Universal Life infilling all living things, is not, in itself, the Being
and Life of THE ONE--but is rather a great fundamental emanation of The One, the manner and
nature of which will be spoken of as we proceed. Remember this, please.

Leading up to the Supreme Idea of the One in All--All in One--let us examine into the report of the
Reason upon the nature of the Substance--the Divine Substance--from which all living forms are
shaped; and from which all that we know as Finite Mind is likewise composed. How can these
imperfect and finite forms be composed of a Divine and Perfect Substance? This is the question
that must occur to the minds of those who are capable of deep thought on the subject--and it is a
question that must be answered. And it can be answered--and is answered in the Higher Yogi
Philosophy. Let us examine the reports of the Reason, a little further--then shall we be ready for the

Of what can the Substance of the Infinite be composed? Can it be Matter? Yes, if you are satisfied
with the reasoning of the Materialists, and cannot see further into the Truth! These teach that
Matter is God, and that God is Matter. But if you be among those who reject the Materialistic
teachings, you will not be satisfied with this answer. Even if you incline toward a Non-mental
Infinite, still if you are familiar with the results of modern scientific investigation, and know that
Science has seen Matter resolve itself into something like Electric Energy, you will know that the
Truth must lie behind and beyond Matter.

Then is it Pure Energy? you may ask. Pure Energy? what's that? Can you think of Energy apart from
material manifestation? Have you ever known of such a thing? Do you not know that even the
Electron Theory, which is attracting the attention of advanced Modern Science, and which holds
that all things are composed of minute particles of Electric Energy, called Electrons, from which the
Atoms are built--do you not know that even this theory recognizes the necessity of a "something
like Matter, only infinitely finer," which they call the Ether, to enfold the Electric Energy as a
unit--to give it a body, as it were? And can you escape from the fact that the most advanced
scientific minds find confronting them--the fact that in all Energy, and governing its actions, there 'is
manifested "something like Mind"? Page 170
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And does not all this teach thinkers that just as Energy creates from itself, that which is called
Matter, and then uses it as a vehicle of expression and action--so does this "Something like Mind"
create from itself that which we call Energy, and proceeds to use it, with its accompanying phase of
Matter, for its expression? Does not all advanced research show us that in all Matter and Energy
there are evidences of the operation of this "Something like Mind"? And if this be so, are we not
justified as regarding Matter and Energy as mere Effects--and to look to this "Something like Mind"
as the more fundamental Substance? We think so--and Science is beginning to think so, too. And
soon will Science be regarding with the most profound respect, the Metaphysical axiom that "All is

You will see by reference to our "Advanced Course in Yogi Philosophy, etc.," the general Yogi
teachings regarding the Emanation of the One, known respectively as Mind, Energy, and Matter.
You will see that the Yogis teach that Mind, Energy, and Matter comprise a threefold emanation of
the Absolute. You will also see that it is taught that Mind was the Parent-Emanation--the Universal
Mind; and that the Universal Energy was the Second-Emanation (proceeding from Mind); and that
the Universal Matter was the Third Emanation (proceeding from Energy) In the same book you will
find that the Teaching is that above Matter, Energy, and Mind, is the Essence of the Absolute, which
is called Spirit--the nature of which is non-understandable to the mind of Man, the highest
conception of which is the highest manifestation of itself--Mind. But as we cannot comprehend
spirit otherwise, we are justified in thinking of it as Something like Infinite Mind--Something as
much higher than Finite Mind as that is higher than mere energy.

Now, then--we have seen the folly of thinking of the Divine Substance as Matter or Energy. And we
have come to know it as Spirit, something like Mind, only infinitely higher, but which still may be
thought of in terms of Infinite Mind, for we can have no higher terms in our thinking operations. So
we may then assume that this Divine Nature or substance is SPIRIT, which we will think of as Infinite
Mind, for want of a better form of conception.

We have seen the folly of thinking of the Divine Essential Substance as the Body of God. We have
likewise seen the folly of thinking of it as the Vital Energy of God. And we have found that we could
not escape thinking of it as the Spirit, or infinite Mind of God. Beyond this we cannot think

But do you not see that all this exercise of the Reason has brought us to the point where we must
think that this Divine Substance, which the Absolute-God uses in the manifestation of Universal
Life; the Universe; and all the forms, and shapes, and manifestations of life and things in the
Universe--this Divine Substance which must be in All Things--and in which All Things must rest, even
as the bubble rests on the Ocean--that this can be nothing less than Spirit, and that this Spirit can
be thought of only as Infinite Mind?

And, if this be so, then indeed must All be Mind, and Mind be

All--meaning, of course, the Infinite Mind, not the finite manifestation that we call Mind.

Then, if this reasoning has been correct, then must we think that All Life--all the
Universe--Everything except the Absolute itself--must be held in the Infinite Mind of the Absolute! Page 171
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And, so, by the exercise of our Reason--by listening to, and examining its reports, we have been
brought face to face--eye to eye--heart to heart--with the Teaching of the Illumined Ones, which
has come down to us as the Highest Teaching of the Yogi Philosophy! For this, indeed, is the highest
conception of Truth in the Yogi Teachings--this, that ALL MANIFESTATIONS AND EMANATIONS OF
Real Thing about Man is THE SPIRIT involved in the Thought-Form, the rest is mere Personality,
which changes and ceases to be. The Spirit in the Soul of Man, is the SOUL OF THE SOUL, which is
never born; never changeth; never dieth--this is The Real Self of Man, in which, indeed, he is "One
with the Father."

This is the point where the Reasoning Mind of Man has come to a sense of Agreement with the
Highest Yogi Teachings. Let us now pass on to the Teachings themselves--let us listen to The
Message of Truth.

In this consideration of the Highest Yogi Philosophy, and its teaching, we would again say to our
students, that which we said to them in "The Advanced Course"--that we do not attempt to teach
the "why" of the Manifestation of The Absolute, but rest content with delivering the Message of
the Yogi Sages, which deals with the "how." As we stated in the lessons referred to, we incline to
that school of the Higher Teachings, which holds that the "Why" of the Infinite Manifestation must,
of necessity, rest with the Infinite alone, and that the finite mind cannot hope to answer the
question. We hold that in all the Universal Mind, or in any of its Mind Manifestations, there is to be
found no answer to this question! Wrapped in the Essence of the Absolute Spirit, alone, is this Final

The Sages, and Masters, from their high spiritual points of observation, possess many truths
regarding the "how" side of the question that would appear almost like Infinite Wisdom itself,
compared with our puny knowledge. But even these great souls report that they do not possess the
answer to the Final Question--the "Why" of the Infinite Manifestation. And so we may be excused
from attempting to answer it--and without shame or sense of shortcoming do we still say, to this
question, "We do not know!"

In order that the Final Question may be fully understood let us consider it for a moment. We find
the Question arising from the following condition:

The human Reason is compelled to admit that there is an Infinite, Eternal, Causeless REALITY
underlying all forms of manifestation in the phenomenal world. It is likewise compelled to admit
that this REALITY must comprise All that Really Is--and that there can be nothing Real outside of
Itself. Arising from this is the Truth, that all forms of phenomenal manifestation, must emanate
from the One Reality, for there is nothing else Real from which they could emanate. And the
twin-Truth that these forms of manifestation, must also be in the Being of the One Reality, for there
is nowhere outside of the All wherein they might find a place. So this One Reality is seen to be "That
from which All Things flow"; and "That in which All Things live, and move and have their being." Page 172
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Therefore All Things emanate from, and are contained in the One Reality. We shall consider "just
how" later on, but the question which confronts us, and which has been called the "Final
Question"--and that which we pronounce unanswerable--is this: "Why has the Infinite manifested
and emanated Finite forms of being?" You will see the nature of the question when you stop to
consider: (1) The Infinite cannot have Desire, for that is a Finite quality; (2) It cannot lack anything,
for that would take away from its Infinity; (3) and even if it did lack anything, from whence could it
expect to acquire it; for there is nothing outside of itself--if It lacks anything, it must continue to
always lack it, for there is no outside source from which It could obtain anything which it does not
already possess. And Desire would be, of course, a wanting for something which it lacked--so It
could not Desire unless it Lacked--and it would know that Desire would be hopeless, even if indeed
it did Lack.

So you see that if we regard the Infinite Reality as Perfect, we must drop all ideas of It Desiring or
Lacking--and of it Growing or Improving--or of it obtaining more Power, or Knowledge. These ideas
are ridiculous, for an Absolute, Infinite Reality, must possess All-Knowledge; All-Power;
All-Presence, else it is not Absolute and Infinite. And, if It does not possess these attributes of
Being, then It can never hope to acquire them, for there is Nowhere from whence they could be
acquired--there is no Source outside of the All-Source. A Finite Thing, may lack, and desire, and
improve and develop, for there is the Universal Source from which it may draw. But the Infinite has
no Universal Source, for it is Its own Source. Do you see the nature of the Final Question? If not we
will again state it--it is this:

"Why should the Infinite Reality, which possesses all that may be possessed, and which in itself is
the only Source of Things--WHY should It Desire to manifest a Universe from and within Itself?"

A little consideration will show you that there is no intelligent answer to the "Why," either in your
own minds, or in the writings and teachings of the greatest minds. The matter is important, to
those who are confronted every day with some of the many attempts to answer this Final
Question--it is well that our students inform them regarding the futility of such questioning. And
with this end in view, we shall herein give a few of the wise "guesses" at the answer, and our
reasons for considering them inadequate. We ask the student to consider carefully these remarks,
for by so doing he will post himself, and will be saved much tedious and perplexing wandering
along the dangerous places in the Swamp of Metaphysics, following the will-o'-the-wisp of Finite
Mind masquerading as the Infinite Wisdom! Beware of the False Lights! They lead to the quagmire
and quicksands of thought!

Let us now consider some of these "guesses" at the answer to the Final Question. Some thinkers
have held that the Absolute was bound by a Divine Necessity to manifest itself as Many. The
answer to this is that the Absolute could not be bound by anything, inner or outer, else it would not
be Absolute and Infinite, but would be Relative and Finite. Another set of thinkers have held that
the Absolute found within itself a Desire to Manifest as Many. From whence could come such an
action-causing Desire? The Absolute could lack nothing, and there would be nothing for it to desire
to gain, other than that which It already possessed. One does not desire things one already has, but
only what he lacks. Page 173
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Another school would tell us that the Infinite wished to Express itself in the phenomenal world.
Why? Such a phenomenal world could only be reflection of Its power, witnessed only by Itself, and
could contain nothing that was not already contained in the All. To what end would such a wish
tend? What would be accomplished or gained? The Infinite All could not become anything more
than It already was--so why the wish for expression? Some say that the whole phenomenal world is
but Maya, or Illusion, and does not exist at all. Then who else than the Infinite caused the Illusion,
and why the necessity? This answer only removes the question back one point, and does not really
answer it. Some would say that the Universe is the "dream of the Infinite." Can we conceive the
Infinite Being as exercising the finite faculty of "dreaming"--is not this childish?

Others would have us believe that the Absolute is indulging in a "game" or "play," when he makes
Universes, and those inhabiting them. Can anyone really believe this of The Absolute--playing like a
child, with men and women, worlds and suns, as Its blocks and tin-soldiers? Why should the Infinite
"play"?--does It need amusement and "fun" like a child? Poor Man, with his attempts to read the
Riddle of the Infinite!

We know of teachers who gravely instruct their pupils in the idea that the Absolute and Infinite One
manifests Universes and Universal Life, and all that flows from them, because It wishes to "gain
experience" through objective existence. This idea, in many forms has been so frequently advanced
that it is worth while to consider its absurdity. In the first place, what "experience" could be gained
by the Absolute and Infinite One? What could It expect to gain and learn, that it did not already
know and possess? One can gain experience only from others, and outside things--not from oneself
entirely separated from the outside world of things. And there would be no "outside" for the
Infinite. These people would have us believe that The Absolute emanated a Universe from
Itself--which could contain nothing except that which was obtained from Itself--and then proceeded
to gain experience from it. Having no "outside" from which it could obtain experiences and
sentences and sensations, it proceeded to make (from Itself) an imitation one--that is what this
answer amounts to. Can you accept it?

The whole trouble in all of these answers, or attempted answers, is that the answerer first
conceives of the Absolute-Infinite Being, as a Relative-Finite Man, and then proceeds to explain
what this Big Man would do. This is but an exaggerated form of anthropomorphism--the conception
of God as a Man raised to great proportions. It is but an extension of the idea which gave birth to
the savage conceptions of Deity as a cruel chief or mighty warrior, with human passions, hates, and
revenge; love, passions, and desires.

Arising from the same cause, and akin to the theories advanced above are similar ones, which hold
that the Absolute cannot dwell alone, but must forever bring forth souls from Itself--this was the
idea of Plotinus, the Greek philosopher. Others have thought that the Infinite was possessed of
such a consuming love, that It manifested objects upon which it could bestow Its affections. Others
have thought that It was lonesome, and desired companionship. Some have spoken of the Absolute
as "sacrificing" itself, in becoming Many, instead of remaining One. Others have taught that the
Infinite somehow has become entangled in Its Manifestations, and had lost the knowledge of Its
Oneness--hence their teachings of "I Am God." Others, holding to a similar idea, tell us that the
Infinite is deliberately "masquerading" as the Many, in order to fool and mystify Itself--a show of Page 174
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Itself; by Itself, and for Itself! Is not this Speculative Metaphysics run wild? Can one in calm thought
so regard the Infinite and Absolute.

Being--All-Wise--Causeless--All-Powerful--All-Present--All-Possessing--Lacking Nothing--Perfect
One--as acting and performing thus, and from these motives? Is not this as childish as the
childishness of the savage, and barbarians, in their Mumbo-Jumbo conceptions? Let us leave this
phase of the subject.

The Higher Yogi Teachings hold to no such ideas or theories. It holds that the Answer to the Secret
is vested in the Infinite alone, and that finite "guesses" regarding the "Why" are futile and pitiful. It
holds that while one should use the Reason to the full, still there are phases of Being that can be
considered only in Love, Faith, and Confidence in THAT from which All Things flow, and in which we
live and move and have our being. It recognizes that the things of the Spirit, are known by the
Mind. It explores the regions of the Universal Mind to its utmost limits, fearlessly--but it pauses
before the Closed Door of The Spirit, reverently and lovingly.

But, remember this--that while the Higher Yogi Teachings contain no "guess," or speculative theory,
regarding the "Why" of the Divine Manifestation, still they do not deny the existence of a "Why". In
fact, they expressly hold that the Absolute Manifestation of the Many is in pursuance of some
wondrous Divine Plan, and that the Unfoldment of the Plan proceeds along well-established and
orderly lines, and according to Law. They trust in the Wisdom and Love of the Absolute Being, and
manifest a perfect Confidence, Trust and Peaceful Patience in the Ultimate Justice, and Final Victory
of the Divine Plan. No doubt disturbs this idea--it pays no attention to the apparent contradictions
in the finite phenomenal world, but sees that all things are proceeding toward some far-away goal,
and that "All is Well with the Universe".

But they do not think for a moment, or teach in the slightest degree, that all this Unfoldment, and
Plan of the Universe, has for its object any advantage, benefit or gain to the Absolute--such a
thought would be folly, for the Absolute is already Perfect, and Its Perfection cannot be added to,
or taken away from. But they do positively teach that there is a great beneficial purpose in all the
Plan, accruing in the end to the developed souls that have evolved through the workings of the
plan. These souls do not possess the qualities of the Infinite--they are Finite, and thus are capable
of receiving benefits; of growing, developing, unfolding, attaining. And, therefore, the Yogis teach
that this building up of Great Souls seems to be the idea of the Infinite, so far as may be gained
from an observation of the Workings of the Plan. The Absolute cannot need these Great Souls for
Its own pleasure, and therefore their building-up must be for their own advantage, happiness and

The Yogis teach, on this subject, that there can be only ONE Real Perfect Being--Perfect without
experience--Perfect from the Beginning--but only ONE! In other words, they teach that there can be
no such thing as Absolute Perfection, outside of the Absolute Itself--and that not even the Absolute
Being can create another Absolute Being, for in that case there would be no Absolute Being at all,
but only two Relative Beings. Page 175
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Think over this for a moment, and you will see its truth. The ABSOLUTE must always be "the One
without a Second", as the Yogis express it--there cannot be two Perfect ones. And so, all Finite
Beings, being Finite, must work their way up toward the plane of Perfection by The Path of Life,
with all of its lessons, tasks, cares, pains, and strivings. This is the only way open to them--and even
the Absolute cannot have it otherwise, and still be the Absolute. There is a fine point here--the
Absolute is All-Powerful, but even that All-Power is not sufficient to enable It to destroy Its
Absolute Being. And so, you who have wondered, perhaps you may now understand our words in
the First Lesson of this series, in which we said that the message of the Absolute to some of the
Illumined has been: "All is being done in the best and only possible way--I am doing the best I
can--all is well--and in the end will so appear."

And, as we also said in that First Lesson: "The Absolute, instead of being an indifferent and
unmoved spectator to its own creation, is a striving, longing, active, suffering, rejoicing, feeling
Spirit, partaking of the feelings of Its manifestations, rather than callously witnessing them. It lives
in us--with us--through us. Back of all the pain in the world, may be found a great feeling and
suffering love." And in this thought there is comfort to the doubting soul--peace to the troubled

In the Sixth Lesson, we shall proceed to deliver to you the further Message of Truth, concerning
"how" the One Absolute manifests Its Mental Images as Universe; Universal Life; and Forms and
Shapes; and Individualities, and Personalities. We had hoped to include the whole Message in this
Fifth Lesson, but now find that we have merely laid the steps by which the student may reach the
Essential Truth.

But, lest the student may be left in an uncertain state of mind, awaiting the conclusion of the
consideration of the subject--and lest he may think that we intend teaching him that the Universe,
and all in it, including himself are "Dreams," because we have said that All Things are
Thought-Forms in the Mind of the Absolute--lest this misunderstanding may arise, we wish to add a
few parting words to what we have said.

We wish to impress upon the mind of the student that though all Things are but Thought-Forms in
the Mind of the Absolute Being, and that while it is true that the entire Universe of Universes is
simply a Thought-Form held in the Mind of the Absolute--still this fact does not mean that all Things
are "illusions" or "dreams." Remember this, now and forever, O Student--that that which is held in
the Absolute Mind as a Thought-Form IS, and is all there IS, outside of the Absolute Itself. When the
Absolute forms a Thought-Form, It forms it out of Its own mental substance--when the Absolute
"holds anything in Its Mind," It holds it in Itself--for the Absolute is ALL-MIND.

The Absolute is not a material Being, from which Material Beings are created. It is a Spiritual
Being--a Being whose Substance is akin to that which we call "Mind," only raised to Infinity and
Absolute Perfection and Power. And this is the only way it can "create"--by creating a
Thought-Form in Its Mental, or Spiritual Substance. The faintest "Thought" of the Absolute is more
real and durable than anything that man can create--in fact, man can "create" nothing, for all the
hard and real material he uses in his "creations," such as steel, diamonds, granite, are but some of
the minor Forms, "thought" into being by the Absolute. Page 176
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And also remember this, that the Absolute cannot "think" of anything, without putting Itself in that
thing, as its Essence. Just as a man's Mental Images are not only in his mind, but his mind is in them,

Why, you doubting and timorous ones, does not even the finite "thinking" of Man manifest itself in
physical and material changes of form and shape?--does not a man's every thought actually
"create" physical forms and shapes, in his brain-cells and physical tissue? You who are reading
these words--yea, while you are reading these words--are "creating" changes of form and shape in
your brain-cells, and physical organism. Your mind is constantly at work, also, in building up your
physical body, along the lines of the Instinctive Mind (see previous series of lessons)--you are
mentally creating in a miniature universe, every moment of your life. And yet, the idea of the
Absolute "creating" a Universe by pure Thought, in Its own Mind, and thereafter causing the work
of the Universe to proceed according to Law, by simply "Willing" it so, causes you to wonder, and
perhaps to doubt.

O, ye of little faith, you would deny to the Absolute even the power you possess yourself. You plan
things in your mind every day, and then proceed to cause them to appear in material
manifestation, and yet you doubt the ability of the Absolute to do likewise. Why even the poets, or
writers of fiction, create characters in their minds--and these seem so real, that even you imagine
them to be actual entities, and you weep over their pains, and smile at their joys--and yet all this is
on the finite plane. Why, even the "imaginations" of your petty finite, undeveloped minds, have
sufficient power to make your physical bodies sick, or well, or even to cause you to "die," from
some imagined ailment. And yet you doubt the power of the Absolute, to "think" things into being!
You tiny students in the great Kindergarten of Life--you must learn better lessons from your little
blocks and games. And you will--this is the Law.

And you who are filled with the sense of your smallness, and "unreality"--know you that so long as
you are "held in the Mind of God," then so long are you "remembered" by Him. And so long as you
are remembered by Him, no real harm can befall you, and your Reality is second only to His own.
Even though you pass out of your mortal frame--doth he remember you in His Mind, and keeping
you there, he holds you safe and unharmed. The greatest satisfaction that can come to one, is to be
able to fully realize that he, or she, is held firmly IN THE MIND OF THE INFINITE BEING. To such
comes the knowledge that in THAT LIFE there can be NO DEATH.

Peace be with you in this Realization. May you make it your own! Page 177
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In our last lesson we gave you the Inner Teachings of the Yogi Philosophy, relating to the real
nature of the Universe, and all that is therein contained. We trust that you have pondered well and
carefully the statements contained in that lesson, for in them is to be found the essence of the
highest Yogi teachings. While we have endeavored to present these high truths to you in the
simplest possible form, yet unless your minds have been trained to grasp the thought, you may
have trouble in fully assimilating the essence of the teachings. But, be not discouraged, for your
mind will gradually unfold like the flower, and the Sun of Truth will reach into its inmost recesses.
Do not be troubled if your comprehension seems dull, or your progress slow, for all things will come
to you in time. You cannot escape the Truth, nor can the Truth escape you. And it will not come to
you one moment sooner than you are ready to receive it, nor will it be delayed one moment in its
coming, when you are ready for it. Such is the Law, and none can escape it, nor alter it, nor modify
it. All is Well, and All is Under the Law--nothing ever "happens."

To many, the thought that the Universe and all that is therein contained, are simply "Thought
Forms" in the Infinite Mind--Mental Creations of the Absolute, may seem startling, and a sense of
unreality may pervade one. This is inevitable, but the reaction will come. To some who have
grasped this mighty truth there has come a feeling that "All is Nothing," which idea is embodied in
their teachings and writings. But this is merely the Negative Phase of the Truth--there is a Positive
Phase which comes as one advances.

The Negative Phase shows us that all that we have considered as real and permanent--the
foundations of the Universe itself--is but a mental image in the mind of the Absolute, and therefore
lacks the fundamental reality that we had previously associated with it. And realizing this, we are at
first apt to feel that, indeed "all is nothing," and to fall into a state of apathy, and lack of desire to
play our part in the world. But, then, happily the reaction sets in, sooner or later, and we begin to
see the Positive Phase of the Truth. This Positive Phase shows us that while all the forms, shapes,
and phenomena of the Universe are but parts of a great show-world, still the essence of all must be
Reality, itself, else there would not be even the "appearance" of a Universe. Before a thing can be a
Mental Image, there must be a Mind to hold that Mental Image, and a BEING to possess that Mind.
And, the very essence of that BEING must pervade and be immanent in every Image in that Mind.
Just as You are really in your Mental Images, as well as they in You, so must the Absolute be in Its
Mental Images, or Creations, or Thought Forms, as truly as they are in the Mind of the

Absolute. Do you see this plainly? Think well over it--ponder it well--for in it lies the Truth.

And so, this Positive Phase of the Truth, is far from depressing--it is the most stimulating conception
one can hold, if he but grasps it in its entirety and fulness. Even if it be true that all these shapes,
and forms, and appearances, and phenomena, and personalities, be but illusion as compared to the
inner Reality--what of it? Are you not then assured that the Spirit within Yourself is the Spirit of the
Absolute--that the Reality within You is the Reality of the Absolute--that you ARE, because the
Absolute IS, and cannot be otherwise? Does not the Peace, and Calm, and Security, and Bliss that
comes to you with this Realization, far more than counterbalance the petty nothings that you have Page 178
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discarded? We think that there can be but one answer to this, when you have fully Realized the

What gives you the greatest Satisfaction and Content in Life? Let us see. Well, there is the
Satisfaction of Immortality. The human mind instinctively craves this. Well, what that even the
highest finite conceptions of Future Life have given you, can compare with the assurance of Actual
Being, in and of the Absolute? What are your petty conceptions of "heavens," "paradises,"
"happy-hunting-grounds," "divine regions of the blessed," and the other ideas of the various
religious sects, when compared with the conceptions of your Infinite and Eternal Existence in
Spirit--your relation with The One--that conception of Infinite Wisdom, Being, and Bliss? When you
grasp this truth, you will see that you are "in Eternity right Now," and are Immortal even this
moment, as you have always been.

Now, what we have said above is not intended to deny the "heaven-worlds," or planes. On the
contrary, you will find much in the teachings regarding these, which the Yogis enter into with much
detail. But, we mean that back of all the "heavens" and "celestial planes," there is a still higher state
of being being--the "Absolute Being." Even the "heavens," and "heaven-worlds," and regions of the
Devas, or Archangels, are but relative states--there is a state higher than even these exalted relative
states, and that is the State of the Conscious Unity and Identity with the One. When one enters into
that State, he becomes more than Man--more than gods--he is then "in the bosom of the Father."

And now, before proceeding to a consideration of the phenomenal manifestation of the
Absolute--the evolving of the Universe in the Infinite Mind--we will again call your attention to the
fact that underlies all the Universe of forms, shapes and appearances, and that is, as we stated in
our last lesson:

All Manifestations and Emanations of the Absolute are Mental Creations of the
Absolute--Thought-Forms held in the Infinite Mind--the Infinite Spirit in them--and they in the
Infinite Spirit. And, the only Real Thing about Man is the Spirit involved in the Thought-Form--the
rest is mere Personality, which changes and ceases to be. The Spirit in the Soul of Man, is the Soul
of the Soul, which is never born; never changeth; never dieth--this is The Real Self of Man, in which,
indeed, he is "One with the Father."

And, now let us consider the Yogi Teachings regarding the creation of the Universe, and the
evolution of the living forms thereon. We shall endeavor to give you the story as plainly as may be,
holding fast to the main thought, and avoiding the side-paths of details, etc., so far as is possible.

In the first place, we must imagine ourselves back to the beginning of a "Day of Brahm,"--the first
dawn of that Day, which is breaking from the darkness of a "Night of Brahm." Before we proceed
further, we must tell you something about these "Days and Nights of Brahm," of which you have
seen much mention in the Oriental writings.

The Yogi Teachings contain much regarding the "Days and Nights of Brahm;" the "In-breathing and
Out-breathing of the Creative Principle;" the periods of "Manvantara," and the periods of "Pralaya."
This thought runs through all the Oriental thought, although in different forms, and with various
interpretations. The thought refers to the occult truth that there is in Cosmic Nature alternate Page 179
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periods of Activity and Inactivity--Days and Nights--In-breathings and Out-breathings--Wakefulness
and Sleep. This fundamental law manifests in all Nature, from Universes to Atoms. Let us see it now
in its application to Universes.

At this point we would call the attention of the student that in many of the presentations of the
Hindu Teachings the writers speak as if the Absolute, Itself, were subject to this law of Rhythm, and
had Its Periods of Rest and Work, like Its manifestations. This is incorrect. The highest teachings do
not so hold, although at first glance it would so appear. The teaching really is that while the
Creative Principle manifests this rhythm, still even this principle, great though it be, is a
manifestation of the Absolute, and not the Absolute itself. The highest Hindu teachings are firm and
unmistakable about this point.

And, another point, in which there is much mistaken teaching. In the periods of Creative Inactivity
in a Universe it must not be supposed that there is no Activity anywhere. On the contrary, there is
never a cessation of Activity on the part of the Absolute. While it is Creative Night in one Universe,
or System of Universes, there is intense activity of Mid-Day in others. When we say "The Universe"
we mean the Universe of Solar Systems--millions of such systems--that compose the particular
universe of which we have any knowledge. The highest teachings tell us that this Universe is but
one of a System of Universes, millions in number--and that this System is but one, in a higher
System, and so on and on, to infinity. As one Hindu Sage hath said: "Well do we know that the
Absolute is constantly creating Universes in Its Infinite Mind--and constantly destroying them--and,
though millions upon millions of aeons intervene between creation and destruction, yet doth it
seem less than the twinkle of an eye to The Absolute One."

And so the "Day and Night of Brahm" means only the statement of the alternating periods of
Activity and Inactivity in some one particular Universe, amidst the Infinite Universality. You will find
a mention of these periods of Activity and Inactivity in the "Bhagavad Gita," the great Hindu epic.
The following quotations, and page references, relate to the edition published by the Yogi
Publication Society, which was compiled and adapted by the writer of these lessons. In that edition
of the "Bhagavad Gita," on page 77, you will find these words attributed to Krishna, the Absolute
One in human incarnation:

"The worlds and universes--yea, even the world of Brahm, a single day of which is like unto a
thousand Yugas (four billion years of the earth), and his night as much--these worlds must come
and go... The Days of Brahm are succeeded by the Nights of Brahm. In these Brahmic Days all things
emerge from invisibility, and become visible. And, on the coming of the Brahmic Night, all visible
things again melt into invisibility. The Universe having once existed, melteth away; and lo! is again

And, in the same edition, on page 80, we find these words, attributed to the same speaker:

"At the end of a Kalpa--a Day of Brahm--a period of Creative Activity--I withdraw into my nature, all
things and beings. And, at the beginning of another Kalpa, I emanate all things and beings, and
re-perform my creative act." Page 180
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We may say here, in passing, that Modern Science now holds to the theory of periods of Rhythmic
Change; of Rise and Fall; of Evolution and Dissolution.

It holds that, beginning at some time in the past aeons of time, there was the beginning of an
upward or evolutionary movement, which is now under way; and that, according to the law of
Nature, there must come a time when the highest point will be reached, and then will come the
beginning of the downward path, which in time must come to an end, being succeeded by a long
period of inactivity, which will then be followed by the beginning of a new period of Creative
Activity and

Evolution--"a Day of Brahm."

This thought of this law of Rhythm, in its Universal form, has been entertained by the thinkers of all
times and races. Herbert Spencer expressly held to it in his "First Principles," expressing it in many
ways akin to this: "Evolution must come to a close in complete equilibrium or rest;" and again, "It is
not inferable from the general progress towards equilibrium, that a state of universal quiescence or
death will be reached; but that if a process of reasoning ends in that conclusion, a further process
of reasoning points to renewals of activity and life;" and again, "Rhythm in the totality of
changes--alternate eras of evolution and dissolution." The Ancient Western Philosophers also
indulged in this idea. Heraclitus taught that the universe manifested itself in cycles, and the Stoics
taught that "the world moves in an endless cycle, through the same stages." The followers of
Pythagoras went even further, and claimed that "the succeeding worlds resemble each other, down
to the minutest detail," this latter idea, however--the idea of the "Eternal Recurrence"--while held
by a number of thinkers, is not held by the Yogi teachers, who teach infinite progression--an
Evolution of Evolution, as it were. The Yogi teachings, in this last mentioned particular, are
resembled more by the line of Lotze's thinking, as expressed in this sentence from his
Micro-cosmos: "The series of Cosmic Periods, ... each link of which is bound together with every
other; ... the successive order of these sections shall compose the unity of an onward-advancing
melody." And, so through the pages of Heraclitus, the Stoics, the Pythagoreans, Empedocles, Virgil,
down to the present time, in Nietzsche, and his followers, we find this thought of Universal
Rhythm--that fundamental conception of the ancient Yogi Philosophy.

And, now, returning to the main path of our thought--let us stand here at the beginning of the
dawn of a Day of Brahm. It is verily a beginning, for there is nothing to be seen--there is nothing but
Space. No trace of Matter, Force or Mind, as we know these terms. In that portion of Infinite
Space--that is, of course, in that "portion" of the Infinite Mind of the Absolute One, for even Space
is a "conception" of that Mind, there is "Nothing." This is "the darkest moment, just before the

Then comes the breaking of the dawn of the Brahmic Day. The Absolute begins the "creation" of a
Universe. And, how does It create? There can be no creation of something out of nothing. And
except the Absolute Itself there is but Nothing.

Therefore The Absolute must create the Universe out of Its own "substance," if we can use the
word "substance" in this connection. "Substance" means, literally, "that which stands under," being Page 181
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derived from the two Latin words, sub, meaning "under," and stare, meaning "to stand." The
English word "understand" means, literally, "to stand under"--the two words really meaning the
same. This is more than a coincidence.

So the Absolute must create the Universe from its own substance, we have seen. Well, what is this
"substance" of the Absolute? Is it Matter? No! for Matter we know to be, in itself, merely a
manifestation of Force, or Energy. Then, is it Force or Energy? No! because Force and Energy, in
itself, cannot possess Mind, and we must think of the Absolute as possessing Mind, for it manifests
Mind, and what is manifested must be in the Manifestor, or Manifesting Agent. Then this
"substance" must be Mind? Well, yes, in a way--and yet not Mind as we know it, finite and
imperfect. But something like Mind, only Infinite in degree and nature--something sufficiently
greater than Mind as we know it, to admit of it being the Cause of Mind. But, we are compelled to
think of it as "Infinite Mind," for our finite Minds can hold no higher conception. So we are content
to say that this "substance" from which the Absolute must create the Universe is a something that
we will call Infinite Mind. Fix this in your mind, please, as the first step in our conception.

But, how can the Infinite Mind be used to create finite minds, shapes, forms, and things, without it
being lessened in quantity--how can you take something from something, and still have the original
something left? An impossibility! And, we cannot think of the Absolute as "dividing Itself up" into
two or more portions--for if such were the case, there would be two or more Absolutes, or else
None. There cannot be two Absolutes, for if the Absolute were to divide itself so there would be no
Absolute, but only two Relatives--two Finites instead of One Infinite. Do you see the absurdity?

Then how can this work of Creation be accomplished, in view of these difficulties which are
apparent even to our finite minds? You may thresh this question over and over again in your
minds--men have done so in all times--and you will not find the answer except in the fundamental
Idea of the Yogi Teachings. And this Fundamental Idea is that the creation is purely a Mental
Creation, and the Universe is the Mental Image, or Thought-Form, in the Mind of the Absolute--in
the Infinite Mind, itself. No other "creation" is possible. And so this, say the Yogi Masters, this is the
Secret of Universal Creation. The Universe is of, and in, the Infinite Mind, and this is the only way it
could be so. So, fix in your mind this second step in our conception.

But then, you ask us, from whence comes Force, Matter, and Finite Mind? Well asked, good
student--your answer shall be forthcoming. Here it is.

Finite Mind; Force or Energy; and Matter; in themselves have no existence. They are merely Mental
Images, or Thought-Forms in the Infinite Mind of the Absolute. Their whole existence and
appearance depends upon their Mental Conception and Retention in the Infinite Mind. In It they
have their birth, rise, growth, decline and death.

Then what is Real about ME, you may ask--surely I have a vivid consciousness of Reality--is this
merely an illusion, or shadow? No, not so! that sense of Reality which you possess and which every
creature or thing possesses--that sense of "I Am"--is the perception by the Mental Image of the
Reality of its Essence--and that Essence is the Spirit. And that Spirit is the SUBSTANCE OF THE
ABSOLUTE embodied in Its conception, the Mental Image. It is the perception by the Finite, of its Page 182
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Infinite Essence. Or, the perception by the Relative of its Absolute Essence. Or, the perception by
You, or I, or any other man or woman, of the Real Self, which underlies all the sham self or
Personality. It is the reflection of the Sun, in the dew-drop, and thousands of dew-drops--seemingly
thousands of Suns, and yet but One. And yet, that reflection of the Sun in the dewdrop is more than
a "reflection," for it is the substance of the Sun itself--and yet the Sun shines on high, one and
undivided, yet manifesting in millions of dew-drops. It is only by figures of speech that we can
speak of the Unspeakable Reality.

To make it perhaps plainer to some of you, let us remind you that even in your finite Mental Images
there is evident many forms of life. You may think of a moving army of thousands of men. And yet
the only "I" in these men is your own "I." These characters in your mind move and live and have
their being, and yet there is nothing in them except "You!" The characters of Shakespeare, Dickens,
Thackeray, Balzac, and the rest, were such strong Mental Images that not only their creators were
carried away by their power, and apparent ability, but even you who read of them, many years
after, perhaps, feel the apparent reality, and weep, or smile, or grow angry over their actions. And,
yet there was no Hamlet, outside of Shakespeare's mind; no Micawber outside of Dickens; no Pere
Goriot outside of Balzac.

These illustrations are but finite examples of the Infinite, but still they will give you an idea of the
truth that we are trying to unfold in your mind. But you must not imagine that You and I, and all
others, and things, are but mere "imaginations," like our created characters--that would be a most
unhappy belief. The mental creations held by You and I, and other finite minds, are but finite
creations of finite minds, while WE, ourselves, are the finite creations of an INFINITE MIND. While
our, and Dickens', and Balzac's, and Shakespeare's creations live and move and have their being,
they have no other "I" than our Finite Minds, while we, the characters in the Divine Drama, Story,
or Epic, have for our "I"--our Real Self--the ABSOLUTE REALITY. They have merely a background of
our finite personalities, and minds, before which they may desport themselves. until, alas! the very
background fades away to dust, and both background and shadows disappear. But, we have behind
our personalities the Eternal Background of Reality, which changeth not, neither doth it Disappear.
Shadows on a screen though our Personalities may be, yet the Screen is Real and Eternal. Take
away the finite screen and the shadows disappear--but our Screen remains forever.

We are Mental Images in the Infinite Mind--the Infinite Mind holds us safe--we cannot be lost--we
cannot be hurt--we can never disappear, unless we be absorbed in the Infinite Mind itself, and then
we STILL ARE! The Infinite Mind never forgets--it never can overlook us--it is aware of our presence,
and being, always. We are safe--we are secure--we ARE! Just as we could not be created from
Nothing--so we cannot be converted into Nothing. We are in the All--and there is no outside.

At the dawn of the Brahmic Day, The Absolute begins the creation of a new Universe, or the
recreation of one, just as you may care to state it. The highest Yogi Teachings inform us that the
information relating to this event (which is, of course, beyond the personal knowledge of man as
we know him) has been passed down to the race from teachers, who have received it from still
higher teachers, and so on, and on and on, higher and higher, until it is believed to have originated
with some of those wonderfully developed souls which have visited the earth from higher planes of
Being, of which there are many. In these lessons we are making no claims of this sort, but pass on Page 183
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the teachings to you, believing that their truth will appeal to those who are ready for them, without
any attempt to attribute to them an authority such as just mentioned. Our reference to this high
source of the teachings was made because of its general acceptance in the Eastern countries, and
by occultists generally.

The Yogi teachings inform us that, in the Beginning, The Absolute formed a Mental Image, or
Thought-Form, of an Universal Mind--that is, of an Universal Principle of Mind. And here the
distinction is made between this Universal Mind Principle, or Universal Mind-Stuff, as some have
called it, and the Infinite Mind itself. The Infinite Mind is something infinitely above this creation of
the Universal Mind Principle, the latter being as much an "emanation" as is Matter. Let there be no
mistake about this. The Infinite Mind is Spirit--the Universal Mind Principle is "Mind-Stuff" of which
all Finite Mind is a part. This Universal Mind Principle was the first conception of The Absolute, in
the process of the creation of the Universe. It was the "Stuff" from which all Finite Mind forms, and
is formed. It is the Universal Mental Energy. Know it as such--but do not confound it with Spirit,
which we have called Infinite Mind, because we had no other term. There is a subtle difference
here, which is most important to a careful understanding of the subject.

The Yogi teachings inform us that from this Mental Principle there was developed the Universal
Principle of Force or Energy. And that from this Universal Force Principle there developed the
Universal Principle of Matter. The Sanscrit terms for these Three Principles are as follows: Chitta, or
the Universal Mind Substance, or Principle; Prana, or the Universal Energy Principle; and Akasa, or
the Universal Principle of Matter. We have spoken of these Three Principles, or Three Great
Manifestations, in our "Advanced Course" of lessons, which followed our "Fourteen Lessons,"
several years ago, but it becomes necessary for us to refer to them again at this place in connection
with the present presentation of the subject. As was stated in the lessons just mentioned, these
Three Manifestations, or Principles, are really one, and shade into each other. This matter has been
fully touched upon in the concluding lessons of the aforesaid "Advanced Course," to which we must
refer you for further details, in order to avoid repetition here. You will find a wonderful
correspondence between these centuries-old Yogi teachings, and the latest conceptions of Modern

Well, to return to the main path once more, the Teachings inform us that The Absolute "thought"
into being--that is, held the Mental Image, or Thought-Form, of--Chitta, or Universal Mind Principle.
This Chitta was finite, of course, and was bound and governed by the Laws of Finite Mind, imposed
upon it by the Will of The Absolute. Everything that is Finite is governed by Laws imposed by the
great LAW which we call The Absolute. Then began the Great INVOLUTION which was necessary
before Evolution was possible. The word "Involve," you know, means "to wrap up; to cover; to hide;
etc.;" and the word "Evolve" means "to unwrap; to unfold; to un-roll; etc." Before a thing can be
"evolved," or "unfolded," it must first have been "involved" or "folded-in, or wrapped up, etc."
Everything must be "involved" before it can be "evolved;" remember this, please--it is true on all
planes, mental, physical, and spiritual. A thing must be "put in" before it may be "taken out." This
truth, if remembered and applied to metaphysical problems, will throw the clearest light upon the
darkest problems. Make it your own. Page 184
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Therefore before the process of Evolution from the gross forms of Matter up to the higher, and
then on to the Mental, from higher to higher, and then on the Spiritual plane--that Evolution which
we see being performed before our sight today--before that Evolution became possible there was a
necessary Involution, or "wrapping-up." The Spirit of the Absolute first "involved" itself in its Mental
Image; Thought-Form, or Creation, of the Mind Principle, just as you may "involve" yourself in an
earnest thought in deep meditation. Did you never "lose yourself" in thought, or "forget yourself"
in an idea? Have you not spoken of yourself as having been "wrapped in thought?" Well, then you
can see something of what is here meant, at least so far as the process of "involution" is concerned.
You involve yourself in your meditations--the Absolute involves Itself in Its Mental Creations--but,
remember the one is Finite, and the other Infinite, and the results are correspondingly weak or

Obeying the laws imposed upon it, the Mental Principle then involved itself in the Energy Principle,
or Prana, and the Universal Energy sprang into existence. Then, in obedience to the same Laws, the
Prana involved itself in the Akasa, or Universal Matter Principle. Of course each "involving"
practically "created" the "wrapper," "sheath" of the lower Principle. Do you see this? Each,
therefore, depends upon the Principle higher than itself, which becomes its "Parent Principle," as
the Yogis express it. And in this process of Involution the extreme form of Matter was reached
before the process of Evolution became possible. The extreme form of gross Matter is not known to
us today, on this planet, for we have passed beyond it. But the teachings inform us that such forms
were as much grosser that the grossest Matter that we know today, as the latter is gross in
comparison with the most ethereal vapors known to Modern Science. The human mind cannot
grasp this extreme of the scale, any more than it can the extreme high degree of manifestation.

At this point we must call your attention to certain occult teachings, widely disseminated, which the
highest Yogi teachers discountenance, and contradict. We allude to the teaching that in the process
of Involution there was a "degeneration" or "devolution" from higher to lower forms of life, until
the gross state of Matter was reached. Such a teaching is horrible, when considered in detail. It
would mean that The Absolute deliberately created high forms of life, arch-angels, and higher than
these--gods in fact--and then caused them to "devolve" until the lowest state was reached. This
would mean the exact opposite of Evolution, and would mean a "going down" in accordance with
the Divine Will, just as Evolution is a "going up" in accordance with the Divine Will.

This is contrary to man's best instincts, and the advanced Yogi teachings inform us that it is but an
illusion or error that men have created by endeavoring to solve spiritual mysteries by purely
intellectual processes. The true teaching is that the process of Involution was accomplished by a
Principle involving itself in the lower Principle created within itself, and so on until the lowest plane
was reached. Note the difference--"Principles as Principles" did this, and not as Individual Forms of
Life or Being. There was no more a "devolution" in this process than there was in The Absolute
involving itself in the Mental Image of the Mind Principle. There was no "devolution" or "going
down"--only an "involution" or "wrapping up," of Principle, within Principle--the Individual Life not
having as yet appeared, and not being possible of appearance until the Evolutionary process began.

We trust that we have made this point clear to you, for it is an important matter. If the Absolute
first made higher beings, and then caused them to "devolute" into lower and lower forms, then the Page 185
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whole process would be a cruel, purposeless thing, worthy only of some of the base conceptions of
Deity conceived of by men in their ignorance. No! the whole effort of the Divine Will seems to be in
the direction of "raising up" Individual Egos to higher and still higher forms. And in order to produce
such Egos the process of "Involution" of Principles seems to have been caused, and the subsequent
wonderful Evolutionary process instituted. What that "Reason" is, is Unknowable, as we have said
over and over again. We cannot pry into the Infinite Mind of the Absolute, but we may form certain
conclusions by observing and studying the Laws of the Universe, which seem to be moving in
certain directions. From the manifested Will of the Divine One, we may at least hazard an idea as to
its purposes. And these purposes seem to be always in an "upward" lifting and evolution. Even the
coming of the "Night of Brahm" is no exception to this statement, as we shall see in future lessons.

From the starting of the process of Involution from the Mental Principle, down to the extreme
downward point of the grossest Manifestation of Matter, there were many stages. From the
highest degree of the Finite Mind, down to lower and still lower degrees; then on to the plane of
Force and Energy, from higher to lower degrees of Principle within Principle; then on to the plane
of Matter, the Involutionary urge proceeded to work. When the plane of Matter was reached, it, of
course, showed its highest degree of manifested Matter--the most subtle form of Ether, or Akasa.
Then down, down, down, went the degrees of Matter, until the grossest possible form was
reached, and then there was a moment's pause, before the Evolutionary process, or
upward-movement, began. The impulse of the Original Will, or Thought, had exhausted its
downward urge, and now began the upward urge or tendency. But here was manifested a new

This new feature was "The Tendency toward Individualization." During the downward trend the
movement was en masse, that is, by Principle as Principle, without any "splitting up" into portions,
or centers. But with the first upward movement there was evidenced a tendency toward creating
Centers of Energy, or Units of activity, which then manifested itself, as the evolutionary movement
continued, from electrons to atoms; from atoms to man. The gross matter was used as material for
the formation of finer and more complex forms; and these in turn combined, and formed higher,
and so on, and on. And the forms of Energy operated in the same way. And the manifestations of
centers of Mind or consciousness in the same way. But all in connection. Matter, Energy and Mind
formed a Trinity of Principles, and worked in connection. And the work was always in the direction
of causing higher and higher "forms" to arise--higher and higher Units--higher and higher Centers.
But in every form, center or unit, there was manifested the Three Principles, Mind, Energy, and
Matter. And within each was the ever present Spirit. For Spirit must be in All--just as All must be in

And, so this Evolutionary process has continued ever since, and must continue for aeons yet. The
Absolute is raising itself up into Itself higher and higher Egos, and is providing them with higher and
higher sheaths in which to manifest. And, as we shall see in these lessons, as we progress, this
evolution is not only along the physical lines, but also along the mental. And it concerns itself not
only with "bodies," but with "souls," which also evolve, from time to time, and bodies are given
these souls in order that they may work out their evolution. And the whole end and aim of it all
seems to be that Egos may reach the stage where they are conscious of the Real Self--of the Spirit Page 186
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within them, and its relation to the Spirit of the Absolute, and then go on and on and on, to planes
of life and being, and activities of which even the most advanced of the race may only dream.

As some of the Ancient Yogi Teachers have said: "Men are evolving into super-men; and super-men
into gods; and gods into super-gods; and super-gods into Something still higher; until from the
lowest bit of matter enclosing life, unto the highest being--yea, even unto The Absolute--there is an
Infinite Ladder of Being--and yet the One Spirit pervades all; is in all, as the all is in It."

The Creative Will, of which we have spoken in these lessons, is in full operation all through Life. The
Natural Laws are laws of Life imposed by The Absolute in his Mental Image. They are the Natural
Laws of this Universe, just as other Universes have other Laws. But The Absolute Itself has no Laws
affecting It--It, in Itself is LAW.

And these Laws of Life, and Nature, along its varying planes, Material, of Energy; and Mental; are
also, in the Divine Mind, else they would not be at all, even in appearance. And when they are
transcended, or apparently defied by some man of advanced development, it is only because such a
man is able to rise above the plane upon which such laws are operative. But even this transcending
is, in itself, in accordance with some higher law.

And so, we see that All, high and low--good and bad--simple or complex--all are contained Within
the Mind of the One. Gods, angels, adepts, sages, heavens, planes,--all, everything--is within the
Universe, and the Universe is Within the Mind of the One. And all is proceeding in accordance with
Law. And all is moving upward and onward, along the lines of Evolution. All is Well. We are held
firmly in The Mind of the One.

And, just as the tendency was from the general Principle toward the particular Individual Soul, so is
there a Reconciliation later on, for the Individual soul, as it develops and unfolds, loses its sense of
Separateness, and begins to feel its identity with the One Spirit, and moves along the lines of
unfoldment, until it becomes in Conscious Union with God. Spiritual Evolution does not mean the
"growth of the Spirit," for the Spirit cannot grow--it is already Perfect. The term means the
unfoldment of the Individual Mind, until it can recognize the Spirit Within. Let us close this lesson
with the


There is but ONE. That ONE is Spirit. In the Infinite Mind of that ONE SPIRIT there arose the Mental
Image or Thought-Form of this Universe. Beginning with the Thought of the Principle in Mind; and
passing on to the Principle of Energy; and then on to the Principle of Matter; proceeded the
Involutionary Process of Creation. Then, upward began the Evolutionary Process, and Individual
Centers or Units were formed. And the tendency, and evolutionary urge is ever in the direction of
"unfolding" within the Ego of the Realization of the Indwelling Spirit. As we throw off sheath after
sheath, we approach nearer and nearer to the SPIRIT within us, which is the One Spirit pervading all
things. This is the Meaning of Life--the Secret of Evolution. All the Universe is contained Within the
Mind of The One. There is Nothing outside of that Infinite Mind. There is no Outside, for the One is
All in All; Space, Time, and Laws, being but Mental Images in that Mind, as are likewise all shapes
and forms, and phenomena. And as the Ego unfolds into a realization of Itself--Its Real Self--so does Page 187
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its Wisdom and Power expand. It thus enters into a greater and greater degree of its Inheritance.
Within the Mind of the One, is All there is. And I, and Thou, and All Things are HERE within that
Infinite Mind. We are always "held in Mind" by The Absolute--are always safe here. There is nothing
to harm us, in Reality, for our Real Self is the Real Self of the Infinite Mind. All is Within the Mind of
the One. Even the tiniest atom is under the Law, and protected by the Law. And the LAW is All there
Is. And in that Law we may rest Content and Unafraid. May this Realization be YOURS.

Guide to Advanced Yoga Techniques

We have now reached a most interesting point in this course of lessons, and a period of fascinating
study lies before us from now until the close of the course. We have acquainted ourselves with the
fundamental principles, and will now proceed to witness these principles in active operation. We
have studied the Yogi Teachings concerning the Truth underlying all things, and shall now pass on
to a consideration of the process of Cosmic Evolution; the Cyclic Laws; the Law of Spiritual
Evolution, or Reincarnation; the Law of Spiritual Cause and Effect, or Karma; etc. In this lesson we
begin the story of the upward progress of the Universe, and its forms, shapes, and forces, from the
point of the "moment's pause" following the ceasing of the process of Involution--the point at
which Cosmic Evolution begins. Our progress is now steadily upward, so far as the evolution of
Individual Centres is concerned. We shall see the principles returning to the Principle--the centres
returning to the great Centre from which they emanated during the process of Involution. We shall
study the long, gradual, but steady ascent of Man, in his journey toward god-hood. We shall see the
Building of an Universe, and the Growth of the Soul.

In our last lesson we have seen that at the dawn of a Brahmic Day, the Absolute begins the creation
of a new Universe. The Teachings inform us that in the beginning, the Absolute forms a Mental
Image, or Thought-Form of an Universal Mind Principle, or Universal Mind-Stuff, as some of the
teachers express it. Then this Universal Mind Principle creates within itself the Universal Energy
Principle. Then this Universal Energy Principle creates within itself the Universal Matter Principle.
Thus, Energy is a product of Mind; and Matter a product of Energy.

The Teachings then further inform us that from the rare, tenuous, subtle form of Matter in which
the Universal Matter Principle first appeared, there was produced forms of Matter less rare; and so
by easy stages, and degrees, there appeared grosser and still grosser forms of matter, until finally
there could be no further involution into grosser forms, and the Involutionary Process ceased. Then
ensued the "moment's pause" of which the Yogi teachers tell us. At that point Matter existed as
much grosser that the grossest form of Matter now known to us, as the latter is when compared to
the most subtle vapors known to science. It is impossible to describe these lower forms of matter,
for they have ages since disappeared from view, and we would have no words with which to
describe them. We can understand the situation only by comparisons similar to the above.

Succeeding the moment's pause, there began the Evolutionary Process, or

Cosmic Evolution, which has gone on ever since, and which will go on for ages to come. From the
grossest forms of Matter there evolved forms a little more refined, and so on and on. From the
simple elementarv forms, evolved more complex and intricate forms. And from these forms
combinations began to be formed. And the urge was ever upward.

But remember this, that all of this Evolutionary Process is but a Returning Home. It is the Ascent
after the Descent. It is not a Creation but an Unfoldment. The Descent was made by principles as
principles--the Ascent is being made by Individualized Centres evolved from the principles. Matter
manifests finer and finer forms, and exhibits a greater and greater subservience to Energy or Force.
And Energy or Force shows a greater and greater degree of "mind" in it. But, remember this, that Page 189
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there is Mind in even the grossest form of Matter. This must be so, for what springs from a thing
must contain the elements of its cause.

And the Cosmic Evolution continues, and must continue for aeons of time. Higher and higher forms
of Mind are being manifested, and still higher and higher forms will appear in the scale, as the
process continues. The evolution is not only along material lines, but has passed on to the mental
planes, and is now operating along the spiritual lines as well. And the end, and aim seems to be that
each Ego, after the experiences of many lives, may unfold and develop to a point where it may
become conscious of its Real Self, and realize its identity with the One Life, and the Spirit.

At this point we may be confronted with the objection of the student of material science, who will
ask why we begin our consideration of Cosmic Evolution at a point in which matter has reached the
limit of its lowest vibrations, manifesting in the grossest possible form of matter. These students
may point to the fact that Science begins its consideration of evolution with the nebulae, or faint
cloudlike, vaporous matter, from which the planets were formed. But there is only an apparent
contradiction here. The nebulae were part of the Process of Involution, and Science is right when it
holds that the gross forms were produced from the finer. But the process of change from finer to
grosser was Involution, not Evolution. Do you see the difference? Evolution begins at the point
when the stage of Unfoldment commenced. When the gross forms begin to yield to the new
upward urge, and unfold into finer forms--then begins Evolution.

We shall pass over the period of Evolution in which Matter was evolving into finer and still finer
forms, until at last it reached a degree of vibration capable of supporting that which we call "life."
Of course there is "life" in all matter--even in the atom, as we have shown in previous lessons. But
when we speak of "life," as we now do, we mean what are generally called "living forms." The Yogi
Teachings inform us that the lowest forms of what we call "life" were evolved from forms of high
crystal life, which indeed they very much resemble. We have spoken of this resemblance, in the
previous lessons of this series. And, so we shall begin at the point where "living forms" began.

Speaking now of our own planet, the Earth, we find matter emerging from the molten state in
which it manifested for ages. Gradually cooling and stratifying, the Earth contained none of those
forms that we call living forms. The temperature of the Earth in that period is estimated at about
15,000 times hotter than boiling water, which would, of course, render impossible the existence of
any of the present known forms of life. But the Yogi Teachings inform us that even in the molten
mass there were elementary forms that were to become the ancestral forms of the later living
forms. These elementary forms were composed of a vaporous, peculiar form of matter, of minute
size,--little more than the atoms, in fact, and yet, just a little more advanced. From these
elementary forms, there gradually evolved, as the Earth cooled and solidified, other forms, and so
on until at last the first "living form" manifested.

As the globe cooled at the poles, there was gradually created a tropical climate, in which the
temperature was sufficiently cool to support certain rudimentary forms of life. In the rocks in the
far northern latitudes, there are found abundant traces of fossils, which goes to prove the
correctness of the Yogi Teachings of the origin of life at the north pole, from which the living forms
gradually spread south toward the equator, as the Earth's surface cooled. Page 190
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The elementary evolving life forms were of a very simple structure, and were but a degree above
the crystals. They were composed of identically the same substance as the crystals, the only
difference being that they displayed a greater degree of mind. For that matter, even the highest
physical form known to us today is composed of simple chemical materials. And these chemical
materials are obtained, either directly or indirectly, from the air, water, or earth. The principal
materials composing the physical bodies of plants, animals, and man, are oxygen, carbon,
hydrogen, nitrogen, with a still smaller proportion of sulphur and phosphorus, and traces of a few
other elements. The material part of all living things is alike--the difference lies in the degree of
Mind controlling the matter in which it is embodied.

Of these physical materials, carbon is the most important to the living forms. It seems to possess
properties capable of drawing to it the other elements, and forcing them into service. From carbon
proceeds what is called "protoplasm," the material of which the cells of animal and vegetable life is
composed. From protoplasm the almost infinite varieties of living forms have been built up by the
process of Evolution, working gradually and by easy stages. Every living form is made up, or
composed, of a multitude of single cells, and their combinations. And every form originates in a
single cell which rapidly multiplies and reproduces itself until the form of the amoeba; the plant;
the animal; the man, is completed. All living forms are but a single cell multiplied. And every cell is
composed of protoplasm. Therefore we must look for the beginning of life in the grade of matter
called protoplasm. In this both modern Science and the Yogi Teachings agree fully.

In investigating protoplasm we are made to realize the wonderful qualities of its principal
constituent--Carbon. Carbon is the wonder worker of the elements. Manifesting in various forms,
as the diamond, graphite, coal, protoplasm--is it not entitled to respect? The Yogi Teachings inform
vis that in Carbon we have that form of matter which was evolved as the physical basis of life. If any
of you doubt that inorganic matter may be transformed into living forms, let us refer you to the
plant life, in which you may see the plants building up cells every day from the inorganic, chemical
or mineral substances, in the earth, air, and water. Nature performs every day the miracle of
transforming chemicals and minerals into living plant cells. And when animal or man eats these
plant cells, so produced, they become transformed into animal cells of which the body is built up.
What it took Nature ages to do in the beginning, is now performed in a few hours, or minutes.

The Yogi Teachings, again on all-fours with modern Science, inform us that living forms had their
beginning in water. In the slimy bed of the polar seas the simple cell-forms appeared, having their
origin in the transitional stages before mentioned. The first living forms were a lowly form of plant
life, consisting of a single cell. From these forms were evolved forms composed of groups of cells,
and so proceeded the work of evolution, from the lower form to the higher, ever in an upward

As we have said, the single cell is the physical centre, or parent, of every living form. It contains
what is known as the nucleus, or kernel, which seems to be more highly organized than the rest of
the material of the cell--it may be considered as the "brain" of the cell, if you wish to use your
imagination a little. The single cell reproduces itself by growth and division, or separation. Each cell
manifests the functions of life, whether it be a single-celled creature, or a cell which with billions of
others, goes to make up a higher form. It feels, feeds, grows, and reproduces itself. In the Page 191
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single-celled creature, the one cell performs all of the functions, of course. But as the forms
become more complex, the many cells composing a form perform certain functions which are
allotted to it, the division of labor resulting in a higher manifestation. This is true not only in the
case of animal forms, but also in the case of plant forms. The cells in the bone, muscle, nerve-tissue
and blood of the animal differ according to their offices; and the same is true in the cells in the sap,
stem, root, leaf, seed and flower of the plant.

As we have said, the cells multiply by division, after a period of growth. The cell grows by material
taken into its substance, as food. When sufficient food has been partaken, and enough new
material accumulated to cause the cell to attain a certain size, then it divides, or separates into two
cells, the division being equal, and the point of cleavage being at the kernel or nucleus. As the two
parts separate, the protoplasm of each groups itself around its nucleus, and two living forms exist
where there was but one a moment before. And then each of the two cells proceed to grow rapidly,
and then separate, and so on to the end, each cell multiplying into millions, as time passes.

Ascending in the scale, we next find the living forms composed of cell-groups. These cell-groups are
formed by single cells dividing, and then subdividing, but instead of passing on their way they group
themselves in clusters, or masses. There are millions of forms of these cell-group creatures, among
which we find the sponges, polyps, etc.

In the early forms of life it is difficult to distinguish between the animal and the plant forms, in fact
the early forms partake of the qualities of both. But as we advance in the scale a little there is seen
a decided "branching out," and one large branch is formed of the evolving plant forms, and the
other of the evolving animal forms. The plant-branch begins with the sea-weeds, and passes on to
the fungi, lichens, mosses, ferns, pines and palm-ferns, grasses, etc., then to the trees, shrubs and
herbs. The animal-branch begins with the monera, or single-cell forms, which are little more than a
drop of sticky, glue-like protoplasm. Then it passes on to the amoebae, which begins to show a
slight difference in its parts. Then on the foraminifera, which secretes a shell of lime from the
water. Then on a step higher to the polycystina, which secretes a shell, or skeleton of flint-like
material from the water. Then come the sponges. Then the coral-animals, anemones and jelly-fish.
Then come the sea-lilies, star-fish, etc. Then the various families of worms. Then the crabs, spiders,
centipedes, insects. Then come the mollusca, which include the oysters, clams and other shell-fish;
snails, cuttle-fish, sea-squirts, etc. All of the above families of animal-forms are what are known as
"invertebrates," that is, without a backbone.

Then we come to the "vertebrates," or animals having a backbone. First we see the fish family with
its thousands of forms. Then come the amphibia, which include the toads, frogs, etc. Then come
the reptiles, which include the serpents, lizards, crocodiles, turtles, etc. Then come the great family
of birds, with its wonderful variety of forms, sizes, and characteristics. Then come the mammals,
the name of which comes from the Latin word meaning "the breast," the characteristic of which
group comes from the fact that they nourish their young by milk, or similar fluid, secreted by the
mother. The mammals are the highest form of the vertebrates.

First among the mammals we find the aplacentals, or those which bring forth immature young,
which are grouped into two divisions, i.e., (1) the monotremes, or one-vented animals, in which Page 192
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group belong the duck-bills, spiny ant-eaters, etc.; and (2) the marsupials, or pouched animals, in
which group belong the kangaroo, opossum, etc.

The next highest form among the mammals are known as the placentals, or those which bring forth
mature young. In this class are found the ant-eaters, sloth, manatee, the whale and porpoise, the
horse, cow, sheep, and other hoofed animals; the elephant, seal, the dog, wolf, lion, tiger, and all
flesh eating animals; the hares, rats, mice, and ail other gnawing animals; the bats, moles, and
other insect-feeders; then come the great family of apes, from the small monkeys up to the
orang-outang, chimpanzee, and other forms nearly approaching man. And then comes the highest,
Man, from the Kaffir, Bush-man, Cave-man, and Digger Indian, up through the many stages until the
highest forms of our own race are reached.

From the Monera to Man is a long path, containing many stages, but it is a path including all the
intermediate forms. The Yogi Teachings hold to the theory of evolution, as maintained by modern
Science, but it goes still further, for it holds not only that the physical forms are subject to the
evolutionary process, but that also the "souls" embodied in these forms are subject to the
evolutionary process. In other words the Yogi Teachings hold that there is a twin-process of
evolution under way, the main object of which is to develop "souls," but which also finds it
necessary to evolve higher and higher forms of physical bodies for these constantly advancing souls
to occupy.

Let us take a hasty glance at the ascending forms of animal life, as they rise in the evolutionary
scale. By so doing we can witness the growth of the soul, within them, as manifested by the higher
and higher physical forms which are used as channels of expression by the souls within. Let us first
study soul-evolution from the outer viewpoint, before we proceed to examine it from the inner. By
so doing we will have a fuller idea of the process than if we ignored the outer and proceed at once
to the inner. Despise not the outer form, for it has always been, and is now, the Temple of the Soul,
which the latter is remodelling and rebuilding in order to accommodate its constantly increasing
needs and demands.

Let us begin with the Protozoa, or one-celled forms--the lowest form of animal life. The lowest form
of this lowest class is that remarkable creature that we have mentioned in previous lessons--the
Moneron. This creature lives in water, the natural element in which organic life is believed to have
had its beginning. It is a very tiny, shapeless, colorless, slimy, sticky mass--something like a tiny drop
of glue--alike all over and in its mass, and without organs or parts of any kind. Some have claimed
that below the field of the microscope there may be something like elementary organs in the
Moneron, but so far as the human eye may discover there is no evidence of anything of the kind. It
has no organs or parts with which to perform particular functions, as is the case with the higher
forms of life. These functions, as you know, may be classed into three groups, i.e., nutrition,
reproduction, and relation--that is, the function of feeding, the function of reproducing its kind, and
the function of receiving and responding to the impressions of the outside world. All of these three
classes of functions the Moneron performs--but with any part of its body, or with all of it.

Every part, or the whole, of the Moneron absorbs food and oxygen--it is all mouth and lungs. Every
part, or the whole, digests the food--it is all stomach. Every part, or the whole, performs the Page 193
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reproductive function--it is all reproductive organism. Every part of it senses the impressions from
outside, and responds to it--it is all organs of sense, and organs of motion. It envelops its prey as a
drop of glue surrounds a particle of sand, and then absorbs the substance of the prey into its own
substance. It moves by prolonging any part of itself outward in a sort of tail-like appendage, which
it uses as a "foot," or "finger" with which to propel itself; draw itself to, or push itself away from an
object. This prolongation is called a pseudopod, or "false-foot." When it gets through using the
"false-foot" for the particular purpose, it simply draws back into itself that portion which had been
protruded for the purpose.

It performs the functions of digestion, assimilation, elimination, etc., perfectly, just as the higher
forms of life--but it has no organs for the functions, and performs them severally, and collectively
with any, or all parts of its body. What the higher animals perform with intricate organs and
parts--heart, stomach, lungs, liver, kidneys, etc., etc.--this tiny creature performs without organs,
and with its entire body, or any part thereof. The function of reproduction is startlingly simple in
the case of the Moneron. It simply divides itself in two parts, and that is all there is to it. There is no
male or female sex in its case--it combines both within itself. The reproductive process is even far
more simple than the "budding" of plants. You may turn one of these wonderful creatures inside
out, and still it goes on the even tenor of its way, in no manner disturbed or affected. It is simply a
"living drop of glue," which eats, digests, receives impressions and responds thereto, and
reproduces itself. This tiny glue-drop performs virtually the same life functions as do the higher
complex forms of living things. Which is the greater "miracle"--the Moneron or Man?

A slight step upward from the Moneron brings us to the Amoeba. The name of this new creature is
derived from the Greek word meaning "change," and has been bestowed because the creature is
constantly changing its shape. This continual change of shape is caused by a continuous
prolongation and drawing-in of its pseudopods, or "false-feet," which also gives the creature the
appearance of a "many-fingered" organism. This creature shows the first step toward "parts," for it
has something like a membrane or "skin" at its surface, and a "nucleus" at its centre, and also an
expanding and contracting cavity within its substance, which it uses for holding, digesting and
distributing its food, and also for storing and distributing its oxygen--an elementary combination of
stomach and lungs! So you see that the amoeba has taken a step upward from the moneron, and is
beginning to appreciate the convenience of parts and organs. It is interesting to note, in this
connection, that while the ordinary cells of the higher animal body resemble the monera in many
ways, still the white corpuscles in the blood of man and the animals bear a startling resemblance to
the amoebae so far as regards size, general structure, and movements, and are in fact known to
Science as "amoeboids." The white corpuscles change their shape, take in food in an intelligent
manner, and live a comparatively independent life, their movements showing independent
"thought" and "will."

Some of the amoebae (the diatoms, for instance) secrete solid matter from the water, and build
there from shells or houses, which serve to protect them from their enemies. These shells are full
of tiny holes, through which the pseudopods are extended in their search for food, and for
purposes of movement. Some of these shells are composed of secreted lime, and others of a flinty
substance, the "selection" of these substances from the ether mineral particles in the water, Page 194
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evidencing a degree of "thought," and mind, even in these lowly creatures. The skeletons of these
tiny creatures form vast deposits of chalk and similar substances.

Next higher in the scale are the Infusoria. These creatures differ from the amoebae inasmuch as
instead of pseudopods, they have developed tiny vibrating filaments, or thread-like appendages,
which are used for drawing in their prey and for moving about. These filaments are permanent, and
are not temporary like the pseudopods of the monera or amoebae--they are the first signs of
permanent hands and feet. These creatures have also discovered the possibilities of organs and
parts, to a still greater degree than have their cousins the amoebae, and have evolved something
like a mouth-opening (very rudimentary) and also a short gullet through which they pass their food
and oxygen--they have developed the first signs of a throat, wind-pipe and food-passage.

Next come the family of Sponges, the soft skeletons of which form the useful article of everyday
use. There are many forms who weave a home of far more delicacy and beauty than their more
familiar and homely brothers. The sponge creature itself is a slimy, soft creature, which fills in the
spaces in its spongy skeleton. It is fastened to one spot, and gathers in its food from the water
around it (and oxygen as well), by means of numerous whip-like filaments called cilia, which flash
through the water driving in the food and oxygen to the inner positions of its body. The water thus
drawn in, as well as the refuse from the food, is then driven out in the same manner. It is
interesting to note that in the organisms of the higher animals, including man, there are numerous
cilia performing offices in connection with nutrition, etc. When Nature perfects an instrument, it is
very apt to retain it, even in the higher forms, although in the latter its importance may be dwarfed
by higher ones.

The next step in the ascending scale of life-forms is occupied by the polyps, which are found in
water, fastened to floating matter. The polyps fasten themselves to this floating matter, with their
mouths downward, from the latter dangling certain tentacles, or thin, long arms. These tentacles
contain small thread-like coils in contact with a poisonous fluid, and enclosed in a cell. When the
tentacles come in contact with the prey of the creature, or with anything that is sensed as a
possible enemy, they contract around the object and the little cells burst and the tiny thread-like
coils are released and twist themselves like a loop around the object, poisoning it with the secreted
fluid. Some of the polyps secrete flint-like tubes, which they inhabit, and from the ends of which
they emerge like flowers. From these parent polyps emerge clusters of young, resembling buds.
These bud-like young afterwards become what are known as jelly-fishes, etc., which in turn
reproduce themselves--but here is a wonder--the jelly-fish lay eggs, which when hatched produce
stationary polyps like their grandparent, and not moving creatures like their parents. The
jelly-fishes have a comparatively complex organism. They have an intricate system of canal-like
passages with which to convey their food and oxygen to the various parts. They also have
something like muscles, which contract and enable the creature to "swim." They also possess a
"nervous system," and, most wonderful of all, they have rudimentary eyes and ears. Their
tentacles, like those of the parent-polyp, secrete the poisonous fluid which is discharged into prey
or enemy.

Akin to the polyps are the sea-anemones, with their beautiful colors, and still more complex
structure and organism, the tentacles of which resemble the petals of a flower. Varying slightly Page 195
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from these are the coral-creatures, which form in colonies and the skeletons of which form the
coral trees and branches, and other forms, with which we are familiar.

Passing on to the next highest family of life-forms, we see the spiny-bodied sea-creatures, such as
the sea-urchin, star-fish, etc., which possess a thick, hard skin, covered by spines or prickly
projections. These creatures abound in numerous species. The star-fish has rays projecting from a
common centre, which gives it its name, while the sea-urchin resembles a ball. The sea-lilies, with
their stems and flowers (so-called) belong to this family, as do also the sea-cucumbers, whose
name is obtained from their shape and general appearance, but which are animals possessing a
comparatively complex organism, one of the features of which is a stomach which may be
discarded at will and replaced by a new one. These creatures have a well defined nervous system,
and have eyes, and some of them even rudimentary eyelids.

Ascending the scale of life-forms, we next observe the great family of the Annulosa, or jointed
creatures, which comprises the various families of the worm, the crab, the spider, the ant, etc. In
this great family are grouped nearly four-fifths of the known life-forms. Their bodies are well
formed and they have nervous systems running along the body and consisting of two thin threads,
knotted at different points into ganglia or masses of nerve cells similar to those possessed by the
higher animals. They possess eyes and other sense organs, in some cases highly developed. They
possess organs, corresponding to the heart, and have a well-developed digestive apparatus. Note
this advance in the nutritive organism: the moneron takes its food at any point of its body; the
amoeba takes its food by means of its "false-feet," and drives it through its body by a rhythmic
movement of its substance; the polyp distributes its food to its various parts by means of the water
which it absorbs with the food; the sea-urchin and star-fish distribute their food by canals in their
bodies which open directly into the water; in the higher forms of the annulosa, the food is
distributed by a fluid resembling blood, which carries the nourishment to every part and organ, and
which carries away the waste matter, the blood being propelled through the body by a rudimentary
heart. The oxygen is distributed by each of these forms in a corresponding way, the higher forms
having rudimentary lungs and respiratory organs. Step by step the life-forms are perfected, and the
organs necessary to perform certain definite functions are evolved from rudimentary to perfected

The families of worms are the humblest members of the great family of the Annulosa. Next come
the creatures called Rotifers, which are very minute. Then come the Crustacea, so called from their
crustlike shell. This group includes the crabs, lobsters, etc., and closely resembles the insects. In
fact, some of the best authorities believe that the insects and the crustacea spring from the same
parent form, and some of the Yogi authorities hold to this belief, while others do not attempt to
pass upon it, deeming it immaterial, inasmuch as all life-forms have a common origin. The western
scientists pay great attention to outward details, while the Oriental mind is apt to pass over these
details as of slight importance, preferring to seek the cause back of the outward form. On one point
both the Yogi teachers and the scientists absolutely agree, and that is that the family of insect life
had its origin in some aquatic creature. Both hold that the wings of the insect have been evolved
from organs primarily used for breathing purposes by the ancestor when it took short aerial flights,
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wings. There need be no more wonder expressed at this change than in the case of the
transformation of the insect from grub to chrysalis, and then to insect. In fact this process is a
reproduction of the stages through which the life-form passed during the long ages between
sea-creature and land-insect.

We need not take up much of your time in speaking of the wonderful complex organism of some of
the insect family, which are next on the scale above the crustacea. The wonders of spider-life--the
almost human life of the ants--the spirit of the beehive--and all the rest of the wonders of insect life
are familiar to all of our readers. A study of some good book on the life of the higher forms of the
insect family will prove of value to anyone, for it will open his or her eyes to the wonderful
manifestation of life and mind among these creatures. Remember the remark of Darwin, that the
brain of the ant, although not much larger than a pin point, "is one of the most marvelous atoms of
matter in the world, perhaps more so than the brain of man."

Closely allied to the crustacea is the sub-family of the mollusca, which includes the oyster, clams,
and similar creatures; also the snails, cuttle-fish, slugs, nautilus, sea-squirts, etc., etc. Some are
protected by a hard shell, while others have a gristly outer skin, serving as an armor, while others
still are naked. Those having shells secrete the material for their construction from the water. Some
of them are fixed to rocks, etc., while others roam at will. Strange as it may appear at first sight,
some of the higher forms of the mollusca show signs of a rudimentary vertebra, and science has
hazarded the opinion that the sea-squirts and similar creatures were descended from some
ancestor from whom also descended the vertebrate animals, of which man is the highest form
known today on this planet. We shall mention this connection in our next lesson, where we will
take up the story of "The Ascent of Man" from the lowly vertebrate forms.

And now, in closing this lesson, we must remind the reader that we are not teaching Evolution as it
is conceived by modern science. We are viewing it from the opposite viewpoint of the Yogi
Teaching. Modern Science teaches that Mind is a by-product of the evolving material forms--while
the Yogi Teachings hold that there was Mind involved in the lowest form, and that that Mind
constantly pressing forward for unfoldment compelled the gradual evolution, or unfoldment of the
slowly advancing degrees of organization and function. Science teaches that "function precedes
organization," that is, that a form performs certain functions, imperfectly and crudely, before it
evolves the organs suitable for the functioning. For instance the lower forms digested food before
they evolved stomachs--the latter coming to meet the need. But the Yogi Teachings go further and
claim that "desire precedes function," that is, that the lowly life form "desires" to have digestive
apparatus, in order to proceed in the evolutionary scale, before it begins the functioning that brings
about the more complex organism. There is ever the "urge" of the Mind which craves unfoldment,
and which the creature feels as a dim desire, which grows stronger and stronger as time goes on.
Some yield more readily to the urge, and such become the parents of possible higher forms. "Many
are called, but few are chosen," and so matters move along slowly from generation to generation, a
few forms serving to carry on the evolutionary urge to their descendants. But is always the
Evolutionary Urge of the imprisoned Mind striving to cast aside its sheaths and to have more
perfect machinery with which, and through which, to manifest and express itself? This is the
difference between the "Evolution" of Modern Science and the "Unfoldment" of the Yogi Page 197
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Teachings. The one is all material, with mind as a mere by-product, while the other is all Mind, with
matter as a tool and instrument of expression and manifestation.

As we have said in this lesson--and as we shall point out to you in detail in future
lessons--accompanying this evolution of bodies there is an evolution of "souls" producing the
former. This evolution of souls is a basic principle of the Yogi Teachings, but it is first necessary that
you acquaint yourselves with the evolution of bodies and forms, before you may fully grasp the
higher teachings.

Our next lesson will be entitled "The Ascent of Man," in which the rise of man--that is, his
body--from the lowly forms of the vertebrates is shown. In the same lesson we shall begin our
consideration of the "evolution of souls." We trust that the students are carefully studying the
details of each lesson, for every lesson has its part in the grand whole of the Teachings. Page 198
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In our last lesson we led you by successive steps from the beginnings of Life in living forms up to the
creatures closely resembling the family of vertebrates--the highest family of living forms on this
planet. In this present lesson we take up the story of the "Ascent of Man" from the lowly vertebrate

The large sub-family of forms called "The Vertebrates" are distinguished from the Invertebrates by
reason of the former possessing an internal bony skeleton, the most important feature of which is
the vertebra or spinal column. The vertebrates, be it remembered, possess practically the same
organs as the lower forms of life, but differ from them most materially by the possession of the
internal skeleton, the lower forms having an external or outside skeleton, which latter is merely a
hardening of the skin.

The flexibility of the vertebra creates a wonderful strength of structure, combined with an ease of
movement peculiar to the vertebrates, and which renders them the natural forms of life capable of
rapid development and evolution. By means of this strength, and ease, these forms are enabled to
move rapidly in pursuit of their prey, and away from their pursuers, and also to resist outside
pressure or attack. They are protected in a way similar to the invertebrates having shells, and yet
have the additional advantage of easy movement. Differing in shape and appearance as do the
numerous members of the sub-family of vertebrates, still their structure is easily seen to spring
from a single form--all are modifications of some common pattern, the differences arising from the
necessities of the life of the animal, as manifested through the desire and necessities of the species.

Science shows the direct relationship between the Vertebrates, and the Invertebrates by means of
several connecting-links, the most noticeable of which is the Lancelot, a creature resembling the
fish-form, and yet also closely resembling the lower (invertebrate) forms of life. This creature has
no head, and but one eye. It is semi-transparent, and possesses cilia for forcing in the water
containing its food. It has something like gills, and a gullet like the lower forms. It has no heart, the
blood being circulated by means of contracting vessels or parts. Strictly speaking, it has no
back-bone, or vertebra, but still Science has been compelled to class it among the vertebrates
because is has a gristly cartilage where the back-bone is found in the higher forms. This gristle may
be called an "elementary spine." It has a nervous system consisting of a single cord which spreads
into a broadened end near the creature's mouth, and which may therefore be regarded as
"something like a brain." This creature is really a developed form of Invertebrate, shaped like a
Vertebrate, and showing signs of a rudimentary spine and nervous system of the latter. It is a

The lowest forms of the true Vertebrates are the great families of Fishes. These Fish families include
fishes of high and low degree, some of the higher forms being as different from the lowest as they
(the highest) are different from the Reptile family. It is not necessary to go into detail regarding the
nature of the fish families, for every student is more or less familiar with them.

Some peculiar forms of fish show a shading into the Reptile family, in fact they seem to belong
nearly as much to the latter as to their own general family. Some species of fish known as the
Dipnoi or "double-breathers," have a remarkable dual system of breathing. That is, they have gills Page 199
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for breathing while in the water, and also have a primitive or elementary "lung" in the shape of an
air-bladder, or "sound," which they use for breathing on land. The Mud-fish of South America, and
also other forms in Australia and other places, have a modification of fins which are practically
"limbs," which they actually use for traveling on land from pond to pond. Some of these fish have
been known to travel enormous distances in search of new pools of water, or new streams, having
been driven from their original homes by droughts, or perhaps by instincts similar to the migrating
instinct of birds. Eels are fish (although many commonly forget this fact) and many of their species
are able to leave the water and travel on land from pond to pond, their breathing being performed
by a peculiar modification of the gills. The climbing perch of India are able to live out of water, and
have modified gills for breathing purposes, and modified fins for climbing and walking. So you see
that without leaving the fish family proper, we have examples of land living creatures which are
akin to "connecting links."

But there are real "connecting-links"' between the Fish and the Reptiles. Passing over the many
queer forms which serve as links between the two families, we have but to consider our common
frog's history for a striking example. The Tadpole has gills, has no limbs, uses its tail like a fish's fin,
eats plants, etc. Passing through several interesting stages the Tadpole reaches a stage in which it is
a frog with a tail--then it sheds its tail and is a full fledged Frog, with four legs; web-feet; no tail; and
feeding on animals. The Frog is amphibious, that is, able to live on land or in water--and yet it is
compelled to come to the surface of the water for air to supply its lungs. Some of the amphibious
animals possess both lungs and gills, even when matured; but the higher vertebrates living in the
water breathe through lungs which are evolved from the air-bladder of fishes, which in turn have
been evolved from the primitive gullet of the lower forms. There are fishes known which are
warm-blooded. Students will kindly remember that the Whale is not a fish, but an aquatic animal--a
mammal, in fact, bringing forth its young alive, and suckling it from its breasts.

So we readily see that it is but a step, and a short step at that, between the land-traveling and
climbing fishes and the lower forms of Reptiles. The Frog shows us the process of evolution
between the two families, its life history reproducing the gradual evolution which may have
required ages to perfect in the case of the species. You will remember that the embryo stages of all
creatures reproduce the various stages of evolution through which the species has passed--this is
true in Man as well as in the Frog.

We need not tarry long in considering the Reptile family of living forms. In its varieties of serpents,
lizards, crocodiles, turtles, etc., we have studied and observed its forms. We see the limbless
snakes; the lizards with active limbs; the huge, clumsy, slow crocodiles and alligators--the
armor-bearing turtles and tortoises--all belonging to the one great family of Reptiles, and nearly all
of them being degenerate descendants of the mighty Reptile forms of the geological Age of
Reptiles, in which flourished the mighty forms of the giant reptiles--the monsters of land and water.
Amidst the dense vegetation of that pre-historic age, surrounded by the most favorable conditions,
these mighty creatures flourished and lived, their fossilized skeleton forms evidencing to us how far
their descendants have fallen, owing to less favorable conditions, and the development of other
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Next comes the great family of Birds. The Birds ascended from the Reptiles. This is the Eastern
Teaching, and this is the teaching of Western Science It was formerly taught in the text-books that
the line of ascent was along the family of winged reptiles which existed in the Age of Reptiles, in the
early days of the Earth. But the later writers on the subject, in the Western world, have
contradicted this. It is now taught that these ancient winged-reptiles were featherless, and more
closely resembled the Bat family than birds. (You will remember that a Bat is neither a reptile nor a
bird--it is a mammal, bringing forth its young alive, and suckling them at its breast. The Bat is more
like a mouse, and its wings are simply membrane stretched between its fingers, its feet, and its tail.)

The line of ascent from Reptile to Bird was along the forms of the Reptiles that walked on land.
There are close anatomical and physiological relations and correspondences between the two
families (Reptiles and Birds) which we need not refer to here. And, of course, many modifications
have occurred since the "branching-out." The scales of the reptiles, and the feathers of the birds,
are known to be but modifications of the original outer skin, as are also the hair, claws, hoofs, nails,
etc., of all animals. Even teeth arose in this way, strange as it may now seem--they are all secreted
from the skin. What a wonderful field for thought--this gradual evolution from the filmy outer
covering of the lowest living forms to the beautiful feathers, beaks, and claws of the bird!

The evolving of wings meant much to the ascending forms of life. The Reptiles were compelled to
live in a narrow circle of territory, while the Birds were able to travel over the earth in wide flights.
And travel always develops the faculties of observation, memory, etc., and cultivates the senses of
seeing, hearing, etc. And the creature is compelled to exercise its evolving "thinking" faculties to a
greater extent. And so the Birds were compelled by necessity of their travels to develop a greater
degree of thinking organism. The result is that among birds we find many instances of intelligent
thought, which cannot be dismissed as "mere instinct." Naturalists place the Crow at the head of
the family of Birds, in point of intelligence, and those who have watched these creatures and
studied the mental processes, will agree that this is a just decision. It has been proven that Crows
are capable of counting up to several figures, and in other ways they display a wonderful degree of
almost human sagacity.

Next above the Bird family comes the highest form of all--the Mammals. But before we begin our
consideration of these high forms, let us take a hasty glance at the "connecting-links" between the
Birds and the Mammals. The lowest forms of the Mammals resemble Birds in many ways. Some of
them are toothless, and many of them have the same primitive intestinal arrangements possessed
by the birds, from which arises their name, Monotremes. These Monotremes may be called
half-bird and half-mammal. One of the most characteristic of their family is the Ornithorhynchus, or
Duck-bill, which the early naturalists first thought was a fraud of the taxidermists, or bird-stuffers,
and then, when finally convinced, deemed it a "freak-of-nature." But it is not a freak creature, but a
"connecting-link" between the two great families of creatures. This animal presents a startling
appearance to the observer who witnesses it for the first time. It resembles a beaver, having a soft
furry coat, but also has a horny, flat bill like a duck, its feet being webbed, but also furnished with
claws projecting over the edge of the web-foot. It lays eggs in an underground nest--two eggs at a
time, which are like the eggs of birds, inasmuch as they contain not only the protoplasm from which
the embryo is formed, but also the "yolk." on which the embryo feeds until hatched. After the Page 201
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young Duck-bill is hatched, it feeds from teatless glands in the mother's body, the milk being
furnished by the mother by a peculiar process. Consider this miracle--an animal which lays eggs and
then when her young are hatched nourishes them with milk. The milk-glands in the mother are
elementary "breasts."

The above-mentioned animal is found in Australia, the land of many strange forms and
"connecting-links," which have survived there while in other parts of the globe they have vanished
gradually from existence, crowded out by the more perfectly evolved forms. Darwin has called
these surviving forms "living fossils." In that same land is also found the Echidna or spiny ant-eater,
which lays an egg and then hatches it in her pouch, after which she nourishes it on milk, in a
manner similar to that of the Duck-bill. This animal, like the Duck-bill, is a Monotreme.

Scientists are divided in theories as to whether the Monotremes are actually descended directly
from the Reptiles or Birds, or whether there was a common ancestor from which Reptiles and Birds
and Mammals branched off. But this is not important, for the relationship between Reptiles, Birds
and Mammals is clearly proven. And the Monotremes are certainly one of the surviving forms of
the intermediate stages.

The next higher step in the ascent of Mammal life above the Monotreme is occupied by the
Marsupials, or milk-giving, pouched animals, of which family the opossum and kangaroo are well
known members. The characteristic feature of this family of creatures is the possession of an
external pouch in the female, in which the young are kept and nourished until they can take care of
themselves as the young of other animals are able to do. The young of the Marsupials are brought
forth, or born, in an imperfect condition, and undeveloped in size and strength. There are fossil
remains of Marsupials showing that in past ages creatures of this kind existed which were as large
as elephants.

In the more common form of Mammals the young are brought forth fully formed, they having
received "nourishment, before birth, from the mother's body, through the placenta, the appendage
which connects the fetus with the parent. The Placental Mammals were the best equipped of all
the life-forms for survival and development, for the reason that the young were nourished during
their critical period, and the care that the mammal must of necessity give to her young operated in
the direction of affording a special protection far superior to that of the other forms. This and other
causes acted to place the Placentals in the "Royal line" from which Man was evolved.

The following families of Placental Mammals are recognized by Science, each having its own
structural peculiarities:

The Edentata, or Toothless creatures, among which are the sloths, ant-eaters, armadillos, etc.
These animals seem to be closer to the Monotremes than they are to the Marsupials;

The Sirenia, so called by reason of their fanciful resemblance to the sirens of mythology, among
which are the sea-cows, manatees, dugongs, etc., which are fish-like in structure and appearance,
the fore-limbs being shaped like paddles, or fins, and the hind-limbs being absent or rudimentary; Page 202
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The Cetacea, or Whale Family, including whales, Porpoises, dolphins, etc., which are quite fish-like
in appearance and structure, their forms being adapted for life in the sea, although they are, of
course, Mammals, bringing forth matured young which are suckled at the breast;

The Ungulata, or Hoofed Animals, which comprise many varied forms, such as the horse, the tapir,
the rhinoceros, the swine, the hippopotamus, the camel, the deer, the sheep, the cow, etc., etc.;

The Hyracoidea, which is a small family, the principal member of which is the coney, or rock rabbit,
which has teeth resembling those of the hoofed animals, in some ways, and those of the gnawing
animals in the others.

The Proboscidea, or Trunked Animals, which family is represented in this age only by the families of
elephants, which have a peculiar appendage called a "trunk," which they use as an additional limb;

The Carnivora, or Flesh-eaters, represented by numerous and various forms, such as the seal, the
bear, the weasel, the wolf, the dog, the lion, the tiger, the leopard, etc. The wolf and similar forms
belong to the sub-family of dogs; while the lion, tiger, etc., belong to the sub-family of cats;

The Rodentia, or Gnawers, comprising the rat, the hare, the beaver, the squirrel, the mouse, etc.,

The Insectivora, or Insect Feeders, comprising the mole, the shrew, the hedgehog, etc.;

The Chiroptera, or Finger-Winged Animals, comprising the great family of Bats, etc., which are very
highly developed animals;

The Lemuroidea, or Lemurs, the name of which is derived from the Latin word meaning a "ghost,"
by reason of the Lemur's habits of roaming about at night. The Lemur is a nocturnal animal,
somewhat resembling the Monkey in general appearance, but with a long, bushy tail and sharp
muzzle like a fox. It is akin to a small fox having hands and feet like a monkey, the feet being used to
grasp like a hand, as is the case with the true Monkey family. These creatures are classed by some
naturalists among the Monkeys by reason of being "four-handed," while others are disposed to
consider as still more important their marked relationship with, and affinity to, the marsupials,
gnawers and insect-feeders. On the whole, these creatures are strangely organized and come very
near to being a "connecting-link" between other forms. One of the Lemurs is what is known as the
colugo, or "flying lemur," which resembles a squirrel in many particulars, and yet has a
membranous web extending from its hands, which enables it to make flying leaps over great
distances. This last named variety seems to furnish a link between the insect-feeders and the

The Primates, which is a large family comprising the various forms of monkeys, baboons, man-apes,
such as the gibbon, gorilla, chimpanzee, orang-outang, etc., all of which have big jaws, small brains,
and a stooping posture. This family also includes MAN, with his big brain and erect posture, and his
many races depending upon shape of skull, color of skin, character of hair, etc.

In considering the Ascent of Man (physical) from the lowly forms of the Monera, etc., up to his
present high position, the student is struck with the continuity of the ascent, development and Page 203
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unfoldment. While there are many "missing-links," owing to the disappearance of the forms which
formed the connection, still there is sufficient proof left in the existing forms to satisfy the
fair-minded inquirer. The facts of embryology alone are sufficient proof of the ascent of Man from
the lowly forms. Each and every man today has passed through all the forms of the ascent within a
few months, from single cell to the new-born, fully formed infant.

Embryology teaches us that the eggs from which all animal forms evolve are all practically alike so
far as one can ascertain by microscopic examination, no matter how diverse may be the forms
which will evolve from them, and this resemblance is maintained even when the embryo of the
higher forms begins to manifest traces of its future form. Von Baer, the German scientist, was the
first to note this remarkable and suggestive fact. He stated it in the following words: "In my
possession are two little embryos, preserved in alcohol, whose names I have omitted to attach, and
at present I am unable to state to what class they belong. They may be lizards, or small birds, or
very young mammals, so complete is the similarity in the mode of the formation of the head and
trunk in these animals. The extremities, however, are still absent in these embryos. But even if they
had existed in the earliest stage of their development, we should learn nothing, for the feet of
lizards and mammals, the wings and feet of birds, no less than the hands and feet of man, all arise
from the same fundamental form."

As has been said by Prof. Clodd, "the embryos of all living creatures epitomize during development
the series of changes through which the ancestral forms passed if their ascent from the simple to
the complex; the higher structures passing through the same stages as the lower structures up to
the point when they are marked off from them, yet never becoming in detail the form which they
represent for the time being. For example, the embryo of man has at the outset gill-like slits on
each side of the neck, like a fish. These give place to a membrane like that which supersedes gills in
the development of birds and reptiles; the heart is at first a simple pulsating chamber like that in
worms; the backbone is prolonged into a movable tail; the great toe is extended, or opposable, like
our thumbs, and like the toes of apes; the body three months before birth is covered all over with
hair except on the palms and soles. At birth the head is relatively larger, and the arms and legs
relatively longer than in the adult; the nose is bridgeless; both features, with others which need not
be detailed, being distinctly ape-like. Thus does the egg from which man springs, a structure only
one hundred and twenty-fifth of an inch in size, compress into a few weeks the results of millions of
years, and set before us the history of his development from fish-like and reptilian forms, and of his
more immediate descent from a hairy, tailed quadruped. That which is individual or peculiar to him,
the physical and mental character inherited, is left to the slower development which follows birth."

This, then, in brief is the Western theory of Evolution--the Physical Ascent of Man. We have given it
as fully as might be in the small space at our disposal in these lessons on the Yogi Philosophy. Why?
Because we wish to prove to the Western mind, in the Western way, that Western Science
corroborates the Ancient Yogi Teachings of the Unfoldment of Living Forms, from Monad to Man.
The Eastern teachers scorn to "prove" anything to their pupils, who sit at the feet of teachers and
accept as truth that which is taught them, and which has been handed down from the dim ages
long past. But this method will never do for the Western student--he must have it "proven" to him
by physical facts and instances, not by keen, subtle, intellectual reasoning alone. The Eastern Page 204
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student wishes to be "told"--the Western student wishes to be "shown." Herein lies the racial
differences of method of imparting knowledge. And so we have recognized this fact and have
heaped up proof after proof from the pages of Western Science, in order to prove to you the
reasonableness, from the Western point of view, of the doctrine of Physical Unfoldment as taught
for ages past by the Yogi gurus to their chelas. You have now the Eastern Teachings on the subject,
together with the testimony of Western Science to the reasonableness of the idea.

But, alas! Western Science, while performing a marvelous work in piling up fact after fact to
support its newly-discovered theory of Evolution, in a way utterly unknown to the Oriental thinker
who seeks after principles by mental concentration--within rather than without--while actually
proving by physical facts the mental conceptions of the Oriental Teachings, still misses the vital
point of the subject-thought. In its materialistic tendencies it has failed to recognize the mental
cause of the physical unfoldment. It is true that Lamark, the real Western discoverer of Evolution,
taught that Desire and Mental Craving, was the real force behind Evolution, but his ideas were
jeered at by his contemporaries, and are not regarded seriously by the majority of Evolutionists
even today. And yet he was nearer to the truth than Darwin or any other Western Evolutionist. And
time will show that Science has overlooked his genius, which alone throws the true light upon the

In order to see just this difference between the Darwinian school and the Yogi Teachings let us
examine into what causes the Western Evolutionists give for the fact of Evolution itself. We shall do
this briefly.

The Darwinians start out to explain the causes of the "Origin of Species," with the statement that
"no two individuals of the same species are exactly alike; each tends to vary." This is a self-evident
fact, and is very properly used as a starting point for Variation. The next step is then stated as
"variations are transmitted, and therefore tend to become permanent," which also is self-evident,
and tends to prove the reasonableness of the gradual evolution of species. The next step in the
argument is "as man produces new species and forms, by breeding, culture, etc., so has Nature in a
longer time produced the same effect, in the same way." This also is reasonable, although it tends
to personify Nature, and to give it a mind before the evolutionists admit "mind" was evolved.

It will be as well to quote Darwin himself on this point. He says; "As man can produce, and certainly
has produced, a great result by his methodical and unconscious means of selection, what may not
natural selection effect? Man can act only on external and visible characters, while Nature, if I may
be allowed to personify the natural preservation or survival of the fittest, cares nothing for
appearances except in so far as they are useful to any being. She can act on every internal organ, on
every shade of constitutional difference, on the whole machinery of life. Man selects only for his
own good; Nature only for the good of the being which she tends. Every selected character is fully
exercised by her, as is implied by the fact of their selection. Man keeps the natives of many climates
in the same country; he seldom exercises each selected character in some peculiar and fitting
manner; he feeds a long-beaked and a short-beaked pigeon on the same food; he does not exercise
a long-backed or long-legged quadruped in any peculiar manner; he exposes sheep with long hair
and short wool in the same climate. He does not allow the most vigorous males to struggle for the
females. He does not rigidly destroy all inferior animals, but protects during each varying season, so Page 205
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far as lies in his power, all his productions. He often begins his selection by some half-monstrous
form, or at least by some modification prominent enough to catch the eye or to be plainly useful to
him. Under Nature the slightest differences of structure or constitution may- well turn the nicely
balanced scale in the struggle for life, and so be preserved. How fleeting are the wishes and efforts
of man! how short his time! and consequently how poor will be his results, compared with those
accumulated by nature during whole geological periods! Can we wonder, then, that Nature's
productions should be far 'truer' in character than man's productions; that they should be infinitely
better adapted to the most complex conditions of life, and should plainly bear the stamp of far
higher workmanship?"

Darwin's theory of survival of the fittest is begun by the statement of the fact that the number of
organisms that survive are very small compared with the number that are born. To quote his own
words, "There is no exception to the rule that every organic being naturally increases at so high a
rate that, if not destroyed, the earth would soon be covered by the progeny of a single pair. Even
slow-breeding man has doubled in twenty-five years, and at this rate in less than a thousand years
there would literally not be standing room for the progeny." It has been computed that if the
offspring of the elephant, which is believed to be the slowest breeding animal known, were to
survive, there would be about 20,000,000 elephants on the earth in 750 years. The roe of a single
cod contains eight or nine millions of eggs, and if each egg were to hatch, and the fish survive, the
sea would shortly become a solid mass of codfish. The house fly is said to have 20,000,000
descendants in a season, counting several generations of progeny, from its several broods. And
some scientist has computed that the aphis, or plant-louse, breeds so rapidly, and in such
enormous quantity, that the tenth generation of one set of parents would be so large that it would
contain more ponderable animal matter than would the population of China, which is estimated at
500,000,000! And this without counting the progeny preceding the tenth generation!

The result of the above conditions is very plain. There must ensue a Struggle for Existence, which
necessitates the Survival of the Fittest. The weak are crushed out by the strong; the swift
out-distance the slow. The individual forms or species best adapted to their environment and best
equipped for the struggle, be the equipment physical or mental, survive those less well equipped or
less well adapted to environment. Animals evolving variations in structure that give them even a
slight advantage over others not so favored, naturally have a better chance to survive. And this,
briefly, is what Evolutionists call "The Survival of the Fittest."

As appertaining to the Struggle for Existence, color and mimicry are important factors. Grant Allen,
in his work on Darwin, says concerning this, and also as illustrating "Natural Selection": "In the
desert with its monotonous sandy coloring, a black insect or a white insect, still more a red insect or
a blue insect, would be immediately detected and devoured by its natural enemies, the birds and
the lizards. But any greyish or yellowish insects would be less likely to attract attention at first sight,
and would be overlooked as long as there were any more conspicuous individuals of their own kind
about for the birds and lizards to feed on. Hence, in a very short time the desert would be
depopulated of all but the greyest and yellowest insects; and among these the birds would pick out
those which differed most markedly in hue and shade from the sand around them. But those which
happened to vary most in the direction of a sandy or spotty color would be more likely to survive, Page 206
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and to become the parents of future generations. Thus, in the course of long ages, all the insects
which inhabit deserts have become sand-colored, because the less sandy were perpetually picked
out for destruction by their ever-watchful foes, while the most sandy escaped, and multiplied and
replenished the earth with their own likes."

Prof. Clodd, remarking upon this fact, adds: "Thus, then, is explained the tawny color of the larger
animals that inhabit the desert; the stripes upon the tiger, which parallel with the vertical stems of
bamboo, conceal him as he stealthily nears his prey; the brilliant green of tropical birds; the
leaf-like form and colors of certain insects; the dried, twig-like form of many caterpillars; the
bark-like appearance of tree-frogs; the harmony of the ptarmigan's summer plumage with the
lichen-colored stones upon which it sits; the dusky color of creatures that haunt the night; the
bluish transparency of animals which live on the surface of the sea; the gravel-like color of flat-fish
that live at the bottom; and the gorgeous tints of those that swim among the coral reefs."

All this does not run contrary to the Yogi Philosophy, although the latter would regard these things
as but the secondary cause for the variation and survival of species, etc. The Oriental teachings are
that it is the desire of the animal that causes it to assume the colors and shapes in accordance with
its environment, the desire of course operating along sub-conscious lines of physical manifestation.
The mental influence, which is the real cause of the phenomena, and which is taught as such by the
Yogis, is almost lost sight of by the Western Evolutionists, who are apt to regard Mind as a
"by-product" of matter. On the contrary, the Yogis regard Matter as the product of Mind. But there
is no conflict here as far as regards the law of the Survival of the Fittest. The insects that most
desired to become sand-colored became so, and were thus protected, while their less "desireful"
brethren were exterminated. The Western scientist explains the outward phenomena, but does not
look for the cause behind it, which is taught by the Oriental sages.

The doctrine of "Sexual Selection" is another of the leading tenets of the Darwinists. Briefly, it may
be expressed as the theory that in the rivalry and struggle of the males for the females the
strongest males win the day, and thus transmit their particular qualities to their offspring. Along the
same lines is that of the attraction exerted by bright colors in the plumage of the males of birds,
etc., which give them an advantage in the eyes of the females, and thus, naturally, the bright colors
are perpetuated.

This, then, is the brief outline of the Story of Man's Physical Evolution, as stated by Western
Science, and compared with the Yogi Teachings. The student should compare the two ideas, that he
may harmonize and reconcile them. It must be remembered, however, that Darwin did not teach
that Man descended from the monkeys, or apes, as we know them now. The teaching of Western
Evolution is that the apes, and higher forms of monkey life descended from some common
ancestral form, which same ancestor was also the ancestor of Man. In other words, Man and Apes
are the different branches that emerged from the common trunk ages ago. Other forms doubtless
emerged from the same trunk, and perished because less adapted to their environments. The Apes
were best adapted to their own environments, and Man was best adapted to his. The weaker
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One must remember that the most savage races known to us today are practically as far different
from the highest American, European or Hindu types of Man as from the highest Apes. Indeed, it
would seem far easier for a high Ape to evolve into a Kaffir, Hottentot, or Digger Indian, than for
the latter to evolve into an Emerson, Shakespeare, or Hindu Sage. As Huxley has shown, the
brain-structure of Man compared with that of the Chimpanzee shows differences but slight when
compared with the difference between that of the Chimpanzee and that of the Lemur. The same
authority informs us that in the important feature of the deeper brain furrows, and intricate
convolutions, the chasm between the highest civilized man and the lowest savage is far greater
than between the lowest savage and the highest man-like ape. Darwin, describing the Fuegians,
who are among the very lowest forms of savages, says: "Their very signs and expressions are less
intelligible to us than those of the domesticated animal. They are men who do not possess the
instinct of those animals, nor yet appear to boast of human reason, or at least of arts consequent
upon that reason."

Professor Clodd, in describing the "primitive man," says: "Doubtless he was lower than the lowest
of the savages of today--a powerful, cunning biped, with keen sense organs always sharper, in
virtue of constant exercise, in the savage than in the civilized man (who supplements them by
science), strong instincts, uncontrolled and fitful emotions, small faculty of wonder, and nascent
reasoning power; unable to forecast tomorrow, or to comprehend yesterday, living from hand to
mouth on the wild products of Nature, clothed in skin and bark, or daubed with clay, and finding
shelter in trees and caves; ignorant of the simplest arts, save to chip a stone missile, and perhaps to
produce fire; strong in his needs of life and vague sense of right to it and to what he could get, but
slowly impelled by common perils and passions to form ties, loose and haphazard at the outset,
with his kind, the power of combination with them depending on sounds, signs and gestures."

Such was the ancestral man. Those who are interested in him are referred to the two wonderful
tales of the cave-man written in the form of stories by two great modern novelists. The books
referred to are (1) "The Story of Ab," by Stanley Waterloo, and (2) "Before Adam," by Jack London.
They may be obtained from any bookseller. Both are works of fiction, with the scientific facts
cleverly interwoven into them.

And now in conclusion before we pass on the subject of "Spiritual Evolution," which will form the
subject of our next lesson, we would again call your attention to the vital difference between the
Western and the Eastern Teachings. The Western holds to a mechanical theory of life, which works
without the necessity of antecedent Mind, the latter appearing as a "product" at a certain stage.
The Eastern holds that Mind is back of, under, and antecedent to all the work of Evolution--the
cause, not the effect or product. The Western claims that Mind was produced by the struggle of
Matter to produce higher forms of itself. The Eastern claims that the whole process of Evolution is
caused by Mind striving, struggling and pressing forward toward expressing itself more fully--to
liberate itself from the confining and retarding Matter--the struggle resulting in an Unfoldment
which causes sheath after sheath of the confining material bonds to be thrown off and discarded, in
the effort to release the confined Spirit which is behind even the Mind. The Yogi Teachings are that
the Evolutionary Urge is the pressure of the confined Spirit striving to free itself from the fetters
and bonds which sorely oppress it. Page 208
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The struggle and pain of Evolution is the parturition-pangs of the Spiritual deliverance from the
womb of Matter. Like all birth it is attended by pain and suffering, but the end justifies it all. And as
the human mother forgets her past suffering in the joy of witnessing the face, and form, and life, of
her loved child, so will the soul forget the pain of the Spiritual birth by reason of the beauty and
nobility of that which will be born to and from it.

Let us study well the story of Physical Evolution, but let us not lose ourselves in it, for it is but the
preliminary to the story of the Unfoldment of the Soul.

Let us not despise the tale of the Body of Man--for it is the story of the Temple of the Spirit which
has been built up from the most humble beginnings, until it has reached the present high stage.
And yet even this is but the beginning, for the work will go on, and on, and on, in the spirit of those
beautiful lines of Holmes:

"Build thee more stately mansions, oh, my soul!

As the swift seasons roll!

Leave thy low-vaulted past!

Let each new temple, nobler than the last,

Shut thee from heaven with a dome more vast,

Till thou at last art free,

Leaving thine outgrown shell by life's unresting sea." Page 209
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As we have said in our last lesson, while the Yogi Teachings throw an important light upon the
Western theory of Evolution, still there is a vital difference between the Western scientific
teachings on the subject and the Eastern theories and teachings. The Western idea is that the
process is a mechanical, material one, and that "mind" is a "by-product" of Matter in its evolution.
But the Eastern Teachings hold that Mind is under, back of, and antecedent to all the work of
Evolution, and that Matter is a "by-product" of Mind, rather than the reverse.

The Eastern Teachings hold that Evolution is caused by Mind striving, struggling, and pressing
forward toward fuller and fuller expression, using Matter as a material, and yet always struggling to
free itself from the confining and retarding influence of the latter. The struggle results in an
Unfoldment, causing sheath after sheath of the confining material bonds to be thrown off and
discarded, as the Spirit presses upon the Mind, and the Mind moulds and shapes the Matter.
Evolution is but the process of birth of the Individualized Spirit, from the web of Matter in which it
has been confined. And the pains and struggles are but incidents of the spiritual parturition.

In this and following lessons we shall consider the "Spiritual Evolution, of the race--that is the
Unfoldment of Individualized Spirit--just as we did the subject Physical Evolution in the last two

We have seen that preceding Spiritual Evolution, there was a Spiritual Involution. The Yogi
Philosophy holds that in the Beginning, the Absolute meditated upon the subject of Creation, and
formed a Mental Image, or Thought-Form, of an Universal Mind--that is, of an Universal Principle of
Mind. This Universal Principle of Mind is the Great Ocean of "Mind-Stuff" from which all the
phenomenal Universe is evolved. From this Universal Principle of Mind, proceeded the Universal
Principle of Force or Energy. And from the latter, proceeded the Universal Principle of Matter.

The Universal Principle of Mind was bound by Laws imposed upon it by the mental-conception of
the Absolute--the Cosmic Laws of Nature. And these laws were the compelling causes of the Great
Involution. For before Evolution was possible, Involution was necessary. We have explained that
the word "involve" means "to wrap up; to cover; to hide, etc." Before a thing can be "evolved," that
is "unfolded," it must first be "involved," that is "wrapped up." A thing must be put in, before it may
be taken out.

Following the laws of Involution imposed upon it, the Universal Mental Principle involved itself in
the Universal Energy Principle; and then in obedience to the same laws, the latter involved itself in
the Universal Material Principle. Each stage of Involution, or wrapping-up, created for itself (out of
the higher principle which in being involved) the wrapper or sheath which is to be used to wrap-up
the higher principle. And the higher forms of the Material Principle formed sheaths of lower forms,
until forms of Matter were produced far more gross than any known to us now, for they have
disappeared in the Evolutionary ascent. Down, down, down went the process of Involution, until
the lowest point was reached. Then ensued a moment's pause, preceding the beginning of the
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Then began the Great Evolution. But, as we have told you, the Upward movement was
distinguished by the "Tendency toward Individualization." That is, while the Involuntary Process
was accomplished by Principles as Principles, the Upward Movement was begun by a tendency
toward "splitting up," and the creation of "individual forms," and the effort to perfect them and
build upon them higher and still higher succeeding forms, until a stage was reached in which the
Temple of the Spirit was worthy of being occupied by Man, the self-conscious expression of the
Spirit. For the coming of Man was the first step of a higher form of Evolution--the Spiritual
Evolution. Up to this time there had been simply an Evolution of Bodies, but now there came the
Evolution of Souls.

And this Evolution of Souls becomes possible only by the process of Metempsychosis (pronounced
me-temp-si-ko-sis) which is more commonly known as Reincarnation, or Re-embodiment.

It becomes necessary at this point to call your attention to the general subject of Metempsychosis,
for the reason that the public mind is most confused regarding this important subject. It has the
most vague ideas regarding the true teachings, and has somehow acquired the impression that the
teachings are that human souls are re-born into the bodies of dogs, and other animals. The wildest
ideas on this subject are held by some people. And, not only is this so, but even a number of those
who hold to the doctrine of Reincarnation, in some of its forms, hold that their individual souls
were once the individual souls of animals, from which state they have evolved to the present
condition. This last is a perversion of the highest Yogi Teachings, and we trust to make same plain in
these lessons. But, first we must take a look at the general subject of Metempsychosis, that we may
see the important part it has played in the field of human thought and belief.

While to many the idea of Metempsychosis may seem new and unfamiliar, still it is one of the
oldest conceptions of the race, and in ages past was the accepted belief of the whole of the civilized
race of man of the period. And even today, it is accepted as Truth by the majority of the race

The almost universal acceptance of the idea by the East with its teeming life, counterbalances its
comparative non-reception by the Western people of the day. From the early days of written or
legendary history, Metempsychosis has been the accepted belief of many of the most intelligent of
the race. It is found underlying the magnificent civilization of ancient Egypt, and from thence it
traveled to the Western world being held as the highest truth by such teachers as Pythagoras,
Empedocles, Plato, Virgil and Ovid. Plato's Dialogues are full of this teaching. The Hindus have
always held to it. The Persians, inspired by their learned Magi, accepted it implicitly. The ancient
Druids, and Priests of Gaul, as well as the ancient inhabitants of Germany, held to it. Traces of it
may be found in the remains of the Aztec, Peruvian and Mexican civilizations.

The Eleusinian Mysteries of Greece, the Roman Mysteries, and the Inner Doctrines of the Cabbala
of the Hebrews all taught the Truths of Metempsychosis. The early Christian Fathers; the Gnostic
and Manichaeans and other sects of the Early Christian people, all held to the doctrine. The modern
German philosophers have treated it with the greatest respect, if indeed they did not at least
partially accept it. Many modern writers have considered it gravely, and with respect. The following
quotations will give an idea of "how the wind is blowing" in the West: Page 211
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"Of all the theories respecting the origin of the soul, Metempsychosis seems to me the most
plausible and therefore the one most likely to throw light on the question of a life to
come."--Frederick H. Hedge.

"It would be curious if we should find science and philosophy taking up again the old theory of
metempsychosis, remodelling' it to suit our present modes of religious and scientific thought, and
launching it again on the wide ocean of human belief. But stranger things have happened in the
history of human opinions."--James Freeman Clarke.

"If we could legitimately determine any question of belief by the number of its adherents, the ----
would apply to metempsychosis more fitly than to any other. I think it is quite as likely to be revived
and to come to the front as any rival theory."--Prof. Wm. Knight.

"It seems to me, a firm and well-grounded faith in the doctrine of Christian metempsychosis might
help to regenerate the world. For it would be a faith not hedged around with many of the
difficulties and objections which beset other forms of doctrine, and it offers distinct and pungent
motives for trying to lead a more Christian life, and for loving and helping our brother-man."--Prof.
Francis Bowen.

"The doctrine of Metempsychosis may almost claim to be a natural or innate belief in the human
mind, if we may judge from its wide diffusion among the nations of the earth, and its prevalence
throughout the historical ages."--Prof. Francis Bowen.

"When Christianity first swept over Europe, the inner thought of its leaders was deeply tinctured
with this truth. The Church tried ineffectually to eradicate it, but in various sects it kept sprouting
forth beyond the time of Erigina and Bonaventura, its mediaeval advocates. Every great intuitional
soul, as Paracelsus, Boehme, and Swedenborg, has adhered to it. The Italian luminaries, Giordano
Bruno and Campanella. embraced it. The best of German philosophy is enriched by it. In
Schopenhauer, Lessing, Hegel, Leibnitz, Herder, and Fichte, the younger, it is earnestly advocated.
The anthropological systems of Kant and Schelling furnish points of contact with it. The younger
Helmont, in De Revolutione Animarum, adduces in two hundred problems all the arguments which
may be urged in favor of the return of souls into human bodies according to Jewish ideas. Of English
thinkers, the Cambridge Platonists defended it with much learning and acuteness, most
conspicuously Henry More; and in Cudsworth and Hume it ranks as the most rational theory of
immortality. Glanvil's Lux Orientalis devotes a curious treatise to it. It captivated the minds of
Fourier and Leroux. Andre Pezzani's book on The Plurality of the Soul's Lives works out the system
on the Roman Catholic idea of expiation."--E.D. WALKER, in "Re-Incarnation, a Study of Forgotten

And in the latter part of the Nineteenth Century, and this the early part of the Twentieth Century,
the general public has been made familiar with the idea of Metempsychosis, under the name of
Re-incarnation, by means of the great volume of literature issued by The Theosophical Society and
its allied following. No longer is the thought a novelty to the Western thinker, and many have found
within themselves a corroborative sense of its truth. In fact, to many the mere mention of the idea
has been sufficient to awaken faint shadowy memories of past lives, and, to such, many heretofore Page 212
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unaccountable traits of character, tastes, inclinations, sympathies, dislikes, etc., have been

The Western world has been made familiar with the idea of the re-birth of souls into new bodies,
under the term of "Re-incarnation," which means "a re-entry into flesh," the word "incarnate"
being derived from the words "in," and "carnis," meaning flesh--the English word meaning "to
clothe with flesh," etc. The word Metempsychosis, which we use in this lesson, is concerned rather
with the "passage of the soul" from one tenement to another, the "fleshly" idea being merely

The doctrine of Metempsychosis, or Re-incarnation, together with its accompanying doctrine,
Karma, or Spiritual Cause and Effect, is one of the great foundation stones of the Yogi Philosophy,
as indeed it is of the entire system of systems of Oriental Philosophy and Thought. Unless one
understands Metempsychosis he will never be able to understand the Eastern Teachings, for he will
be without the Key. You who have read the Bhagavad Gita, that wonderful Hindu Epic, will
remember how the thread of Re-Birth runs through it all. You remember the words of Krishna to
Arjuna: "As the soul, wearing this material body, experienceth the stages of infancy, youth,
manhood, and old age, even so shall it, in due time, pass on to another body, and in other
incarnations shall it again live, and move and play its part." "These bodies, which act as enveloping
coverings for the souls occupying them, are but finite things--things of the moment--and not the
Real Man at all. They perish as all finite things perish--let them perish." "As a man throweth away
his old garments, replacing them with new and brighter ones, even so the Dweller of the body,
having quitted its old mortal frame, entereth into others which are new and freshly prepared for it.
Weapons pierce not the Real Man, nor doth the fire burn him; the water affecteth him not, nor the
wind drieth him nor bloweth him away. For he is impregnable and impervious to these things of the
world of change--he is eternal, permanent, unchangeable, and unalterable--Real."

This view of life gives to the one who holds to it, an entirely different mental attitude. He no longer
identifies himself with the particular body that he may be occupying, nor with any other body for
that matter. He learns to regard his body just as he would a garment which he is wearing, useful to
him for certain purposes, but which will in time be discarded and thrown aside for a better one, and
one better adapted to his new requirements and needs. So firmly is this idea embedded in the
consciousness of the Hindus, that they will often say "My body is tired," or "My body is hungry," or
"My body is full of energy," rather than that "I am" this or that thing. And this consciousness, once
attained, gives to one a sense of strength, security and power unknown to him who regards his
body as himself. The first step for the student who wishes to grasp the idea of Metempsychosis,
and who wishes to awaken in his consciousness a certainty of its truth, is to familiarize himself with
the idea of his "I" being a thing independent and a part from his body, although using the latter as
an abiding place and a useful shelter and instrument for the time being.

Many writers on the subject of Metempsychosis have devoted much time, labor and argument to
prove the reasonableness of the doctrine upon purely speculative, philosophical, or metaphysical
grounds. And while we believe that such efforts are praiseworthy for the reason that many persons
must be first convinced in that way, still we feel that one must really feel the truth of the doctrine
from something within his own consciousness, before he will really believe it to be truth. One may Page 213
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convince himself of the logical necessity of the doctrine of Metempsychosis, but at the same time
he may drop the matter with a shrug of the shoulders and a "still, who knows?" But when one
begins to feel within himself the awakening consciousness of a "something in the past," not to
speak of the flashes of memory, and feeling of former acquaintance with the subject, then, and
then only, does he begin to believe.

Many people have had "peculiar experiences" that are accountable only upon the hypothesis of
Metempsychosis. Who has not experienced the consciousness of having felt the thing
before--having thought it some time in the dim past? Who has not witnessed new scenes that
appear old, very old? Who has not met persons for the first time, whose presence awakened
memories of a past lying far back in the misty ages of long ago? Who has not been seized at times
with the consciousness of a mighty "oldness" of soul? Who has not heard music, often entirely new
compositions, which somehow awakens memories of similar strains, scenes, places, faces, voices,
lands, associations and events, sounding dimly on the strings of memory as the breezes of the
harmony floats over them? Who has not gazed at some old painting, or piece of statuary, with the
sense of having seen it all before? Who has not lived through events, which brought with them a
certainty of being merely a repetition of some shadowy occurrences away back in lives lived long
ago? Who has not felt the influence of the mountain, the sea, the desert, coming to them when
they are far from such scenes--coming so vividly as to cause the actual scene of the present to fade
into comparative unreality. Who has not had these experiences--we ask?

Writers, poets, and others who carry messages to the world, have testified to these things--and
nearly every man or woman who hears the message recognizes it as something having
correspondence in his or her own life. Sir Walter Scott tells us in his diary: "I cannot, I am sure, tell if
it is worth marking down, that yesterday, at dinner time, I was strangely haunted by what I would
call the sense of preexistence, viz., a confused idea that nothing that passed was said for the first
time; that the same topics had been discussed and the same persons had stated the same opinions
on them. The sensation was so strong as to resemble what is called the mirage in the desert and a
calenture on board ship." The same writer, in one of his novels, "Guy Mannering," makes one of his
characters say: "Why is it that some scenes awaken thoughts which belong as it were, to dreams of
early and shadowy recollections, such as old Brahmin moonshine would have ascribed to a state of
previous existence. How often do we find ourselves in society which we have never before met, and
yet feel impressed with a mysterious and ill-defined consciousness that neither the scene nor the
speakers nor the subject are entirely new; nay, feel as if we could anticipate that part of the
conversation which has not yet taken place."

Bulwer speaks of "that strange kind of inner and spiritual memory which so often recalls to us
places and persons we have never seen before, and which Platonists would resolve to be the
unquenched consciousness of a former life." And again, he says: "How strange is it that at times a
feeling comes over us as we gaze upon certain places, which associates the scene either with some
dim remembered and dreamlike images of the Past, or with a prophetic and fearful omen of the
Future. Every one has known a similar strange and indistinct feeling at certain times and places, and
with a similar inability to trace the cause." Poe has written these words on the subject: "We walk
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of a Destiny more vast--very distant in the bygone time and infinitely awful. We live out a youth
peculiarly haunted by such dreams, yet never mistaking them for dreams. As memories we know
them. During our youth the distinctness is too clear to deceive us even for a moment. But the doubt
of manhood dispels these feelings as illusions."

Home relates an interesting incident in his life, which had a marked effect upon his beliefs,
thereafter. He relates that upon an occasion when he visited a strange house in London he was
shown into a room to wait. He says: "On looking around, to my astonishment everything appeared
perfectly familiar to me. I seemed to recognize every object. I said to myself, 'What is this? I have
never been here before, and yet I have seen all this, and if so, then there must be a very peculiar
knot in that shutter.'" He proceeded to examine the shutter, and much to his amazement the knot
was there.

We have recently heard of a similar case, told by an old lady who formerly lived in the far West of
the United States. She states that upon one occasion a party was wandering on the desert in her
part of the country, and found themselves out of water. As that part of the desert was unfamiliar
even to the guides, the prospect for water looked very poor indeed. After a fruitless search of
several hours, one of the party, a perfect stranger to that part of the country, suddenly pressed his
hand to his head, and acted in a dazed manner, crying out "I know that a water-hole is over to the
right--this way," and away he started with the party after him. After a half-hour's journey they
reached an old hidden water-hole that was unknown even to the oldest man in the party. The
stranger said that he did not understand the matter, but that he had somehow experienced a
sensation of having been there before, and knowing just where the water-hole was located. An old
Indian who was questioned about the matter, afterward, stated that the place had been well
known to his people who formerly travelled much on that part of the desert; and that they had
legends relating to the "hidden water-hole," running back for many generations. In this case, it was
remarked that the water-hole was situated in such a peculiar and unusual manner, as to render it
almost undiscoverable even to people familiar with the characteristics of that part of the country.
The old lady who related the story, had it direct from the lips of one of the party, who regarded it
as "something queer," but who had never even heard of Metempsychosis.

A correspondent of an English magazine writes as follows: "A gentleman of high intellectual
attainments, now deceased, once told me that he had dreamed of being in a strange city, so vividly
that he remembered the streets, houses and public buildings as distinctly as those of any place he
ever visited. A few weeks later he was induced to visit a panorama in Leicester Square, when he
was startled by seeing the city of which he had dreamed. The likeness was perfect, except that one
additional church appeared in the picture. He was so struck by the circumstance that he spoke to
the exhibitor, assuming for the purpose the air of a traveller acquainted with the place, when he
was informed that the church was a recent erection." The fact of the addition of the church, seems
to place the incident within the rule of awakened memories of scenes known in a past life, for
clairvoyance, astral travel, etc., would show the scene as it was at the time of the dream, not as it
had been years before.

Charles Dickens mentions a remarkable impression in his work "Pictures from Italy." "In the
foreground was a group of silent peasant girls, leaning over the parapet of the little bridge, looking Page 215
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now up at the sky, now down into the water; in the distance a deep dell; the shadow of an
approaching night on everything. If I had been murdered there in some former life I could not have
seemed to remember the place more thoroughly, or with more emphatic chilling of the blood; and
the real remembrance of it acquired in that minute is so strengthened by the imaginary recollection
that I hardly think I could forget it."

We have recently met two people in America who had very vivid memories of incidents in their past
life. One of these, a lady, has a perfect horror of large bodies of water, such as the Great Lakes, or
the Ocean, although she was born and has lived the greater part of her life inland, far removed
from any great body of water, She has a distinct recollection of falling from a large canoe-shape
vessel, of peculiar lines, and drowning. She was quite overcome upon her first visit to the Field
Museum in Chicago, where there were exhibited a number of models of queer vessels used by
primitive people. She pointed out one similar in shape, and lines, to the one she remembers as
having fallen from in some past life.

The second case mentioned is that of a married couple who met each other in a country foreign to
both, on their travels. They fell in love with each other, and both have felt that their marriage was a
reunion rather than a new attachment. The husband one day shortly after their marriage told his
wife in a rather shamed-faced way that he had occasional flashes of memory of having held in his
arms, in the dim past, a woman whose face he could not recall, but who wore a strange necklace,
he describing the details of the latter. The wife said nothing, but after her husband had left for his
office, she went to the attic and unpacked an old trunk containing some odds and ends, relics,
heirlooms, etc., and drew from it an old necklace of peculiar pattern that her grandfather had
brought back from India, where he had lived in his younger days, and which had been in the family
ever since. She laid the necklace on the table, so that her husband would see it upon his return. The
moment his eyes fell upon it, he turned white as death, and gasped "My God! that's the necklace!"

A writer in a Western journal gives the following story of a Southern woman. "When I was in
Heidelberg, Germany, attending a convention of Mystics, in company with some friends I paid my
first visit to the ruined Heidelberg Castle. As I approached it I was impressed with the existence of a
peculiar room in an inaccessible portion of the building. A paper and pencil were provided me, and I
drew a diagram of the room even to its peculiar floor. My diagram and description were perfect,
when we afterwards visited the room. In some way, not yet clear to me, I have been connected
with that apartment. Still another impression came to me with regard to a book, which I was made
to feel was in the old library of the Heidelberg University. I not only knew what the book was, but
even felt that a certain name of an old German professor would be found written in it.
Communicating this feeling to one of the Mystics at the convention, a search was made for the
volume, but it was not found. Still the impression clung to me, and another effort was made to find
the book; this time we were rewarded for our pains. Sure enough, there on the margin of one of
the leaves was the very name I had been given in such a strange manner. Other things at the same
time went to convince me that I was in possession of the soul of a person who had known
Heidelberg two or three centuries ago."

A contributor to an old magazine relates, among other instances, the following regarding a friend
who remembers having died in India during the youth of some former life. He states: "He sees the Page 216
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bronzed attendants gathered about his cradle in their white dresses: they are fanning him. And as
they gaze he passes into unconsciousness. Much of his description concerned points of which he
knew nothing from any other source, but all was true to the life, and enabled me to fix on India as
the scene which he recalled."

While comparatively few among the Western races are able to remember more than fragments of
their past lives, in India it is quite common for a man well developed spiritually to clearly remember
the incidents and details of former incarnations, and the evidence of the awakening of such power
causes little more than passing interest among his people. There is, as we shall see later, a
movement toward conscious Metempsychosis, and many of the race are just moving on to that
plane. In India the highly developed individuals grow into a clear recollection of their past lives
when they reach the age of puberty, and when their brains are developed sufficiently to grasp the
knowledge locked up in the depths of the soul. In the meantime the individual's memory of the past
is locked away in the recesses of his mind, just as are many facts and incidents of his present life so
locked away, to be remembered only when some one mentions the subject, or some circumstance
serves to supply the associative link to the apparently forgotten matter.

Regarding the faculty of memory in our present lives, we would quote the following from the pen
of Prof. William Knight, printed in the Fortnightly Review. He says: "Memory of the details of the
past is absolutely impossible. The power of the conservative faculty, though relatively great, is
extremely limited. We forget the larger portion of experience soon after we have passed through it,
and we should be able to recall the particulars of our past years, filling all the missing links of
consciousness since we entered on the present life, before we were in a position to remember our
ante-natal experience. Birth must necessarily be preceded by crossing the river of oblivion, while
the capacity for fresh acquisition survives, and the garnered wealth of old experience determines
the amount and character of the new."

Another startling evidence of the proof of Metempsychosis is afforded us in the cases of "infant
prodigies," etc., which defy any other explanation. Take the cases of the manifestation of musical
talent in certain children at an early age, for instance. Take the case of Mozart who at the age of
four was able to not only perform difficult pieces on the piano, but actually composed original
works of merit. Not only did he manifest the highest faculty of sound and note, but also an
instinctive ability to compose and arrange music, which ability was superior to that of many men
who had devoted years of their life to study and practice. The laws of harmony--the science of
commingling tones, was to him not the work of years, but a faculty born in him. There are many
similar cases of record.

Heredity does not explain these instances of genius, for in many of the recorded cases, none of the
ancestors manifested any talent or ability. From whom did Shakespeare inherit his genius? From
whom did Plato derive his wonderful thought? From what ancestor did Abraham Lincoln inherit his
character--coming from a line of plain, poor, hard-working people, and possessing all of the physical
attributes and characteristics of his ancestry, he, nevertheless, manifested a mind which placed him
among the foremost of his race. Does not Page 217
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Metempsychosis give us the only possible key? Is it not reasonable to suppose that the abilities
displayed by the infant genius, and the talent of the men who spring from obscure origin, have their
root in the experiences of a previous life?

Then take the cases of children at school. Children of even the same family manifest different
degrees of receptivity to certain studies. Some "take to" one thing, and some to another. Some find
arithmetic so easy that they almost absorb it intuitively, while grammar is a hard task for them;
while their brothers and sisters find the exact reverse to be true. How many have found that when
they would take up some new study, it is almost like recalling something already learned. Do you
student, who are now reading these lines take your own case. Does not all this Teaching seem to
you like the repetition of some lesson learned long ago? Is it not like remembering something
already learned, rather than the learning of some new truth? Were you not attracted to these
studies, in the first place, by a feeling that you had known it all before, somewhere, somehow?
Does not your mind leap ahead of the lesson, and see what is coming next, long before you have
turned the pages? These inward evidences of the fact of pre-existence are so strong that they
outweigh the most skillful appeal to the intellect.

This intuitive knowledge of the truth of Metempsychosis explains why the belief in it is sweeping
over the Western world at such a rapid rate. The mere mention of the idea, to many people who
have never before heard of it, is sufficient to cause them to recognize its truth. And though they
may not understand the laws of its operation, yet deep down in their consciousness they find a
something that convinces them of its truth. In spite of the objections that are urged against the
teaching, it is making steady headway and progress.

The progress of the belief in Metempsychosis however has been greatly retarded by the many
theories and dogmas attached to it by some of the teachers. Not to speak of the degrading ideas of
re-birth into the bodies of animals, etc., which have polluted the spring of Truth, there are to be
found many other features of teaching and theory which repel people, and cause them to try to kill
out of the minds the glimmer of Truth that they find there. The human soul instinctively revolts
against the teaching that it is bound to the wheel or re-birth, willy-nilly, compulsorily, without
choice--compelled to live in body after body until great cycles are past. The soul, perhaps already
sick of earth-life, and longing to pass on to higher planes of existence, fights against such teaching.
And it does well to so fight, for the truth is nearer to its hearts desire. There is no soul longing that
does not carry with it the prophecy of its own fulfillment, and so it is in this case. It is true that the
soul of one filled with earthly desires, and craving for material things, will by the very force of those
desires be drawn back to earthly re-birth in a body best suited for the gratification of the longings,
desires and cravings that it finds within itself. But it is likewise true that the earth-sick soul is not
compiled to return unless its own desires bring it back. Desire is the key note of Metempsychosis,
although up to a certain stage it may operate unconsciously. The sum of the desires of a soul
regulate its re-birth. Those who have become sickened of all that earth has for them at this stage of
its evolution, may, and do, rest in states of existence far removed from earth scenes, until the race
progresses far enough to afford the resting soul the opportunities and environments that it so
earnestly craves. Page 218
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And more than this, when Man reaches a certain stage, the process of Metempsychosis no longer
remains unconscious, but he enters into a conscious knowing, willing passage from one life to
another. And when that stage is reached a full memory of the past lives is unfolded, and life to such
a soul becomes as the life of a day, succeeded by a night, and then the awakening into another day
with full knowledge and recollection of the events of the day before. We are in merely the
babyhood of the race now, and the fuller life of the conscious soul lies before us. Yea, even now it is
being entered into by the few of the race that have progressed sufficiently far on the Path. And you,
student, who feel within you that craving for conscious re-birth and future spiritual evolution, and
the distaste for, and horror of, a further blind, unconscious re-plunge into the earth-life--know you,
that this longing on your part is but an indication of what lies before you. It is the strange, subtle,
awakening of the nature within you, which betokens the higher state. Just as the young person
feels within his or her body strange emotions, longings and stirrings, which betoken the passage
from the child state into that of manhood or womanhood, so do these spiritual longings, desires
and cravings betoken the passage from unconscious re-birth into conscious knowing
Metempsychosis, when you have passed from the scene of your present labors.

In our next lesson we shall consider the history of the race as its souls passed on from the savage
tribes to the man of to-day. It is the history of the race--the history of the individual--your own
history, student--the record of that through which you have passed to become that which you now
are. And as you have climbed step after step up the arduous path, so will you, hereafter climb still
higher paths, but no longer in unconsciousness, but with your spiritual eyes wide open to the Rays
of Truth pouring forth from the great Central Sun--the Absolute.

Concluding this lesson, we would quote two selections from the American poet, Whitman, whose
strange genius was undoubtedly the result of vague memories springing from a previous life, and
which burst into utterances often not more than half understood by the mind that gave them birth.
Whitman says:

"Facing West from California's shores, Inquiring, tireless, seeking what is yet unfound, A, a child,
very old, over waves, toward the house of

maternity, the land of migrations, look afar, Look off the shores of my Western sea, the circle
almost circled: For starting Westward from Hindustan, from the vales of Kashmere, From Asia, from
the north, from God, the sage, and the hero, From the south, from the flowery peninsulas and spice
islands, Long having wandered since, round the earth having wandered, Now I face home again,
very pleased and joyous. (But where is what I started for so long ago? And why is it yet unfound?)"


"I know I am deathless.

I know that this orbit of mine cannot be swept by a carpenter's compass; And whether I come to
my own to-day, or in ten thousand or ten million years,

I can cheerfully take it now or with equal cheerfulness can wait." Page 219
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"As to you, Life, I reckon you are the leavings of many deaths. No doubt I have died myself ten
thousand times before."


"Births have brought us richness and variety, and other births have brought us richness and


And this quotation from the American poet N.P. Willis:

"But what a mystery this erring mind?

It wakes within a frame of various powers A stranger in a new and wondrous world. It brings an
instinct from some other sphere, For its fine senses are familiar all, And with the unconscious habit
of a dream It calls and they obey. The priceless sight Springs to its curious organ, and the ear Learns
strangely to detect the articulate air In its unseen divisions, and the tongue Gets its miraculous
lesson with the rest, And in the midst of an obedient throng Of well trained ministers, the mind
goes forth To search the secrets of its new found home." Page 220
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One of the things that repel many persons who have had their attention directed to the subject of
Metempsychosis for the first time, is the idea that they have evolved as a soul from individual lowly
forms, for instance that they have at one time been an individual plant, and then an individual
animal form, and then an individual higher animal form, and so on until now they are the particular
individual human form contemplating the subject. This idea, which has been taught by many
teachers, is repellent to the average mind, for obvious reasons, and naturally so, for it has no
foundation in truth.

While this lesson is principally concerned with the subject of the Spiritual Evolution of the human
soul, since it became a human soul, still it may be as well to mention the previous phase of
evolution, briefly, in order to prevent misconception, and to dispel previously acquired error.

The atom, although it possesses life and a certain degree of mind, and acts as an individual
temporarily, has no permanent individuality that reincarnates. When the atom is evolved it
becomes a centre of energy in the great atomic principle, and when it is finally dissolved it resolves
itself back into its original state, and its life as an individual atom ceases, although the experience it
has gained becomes the property of the entire principle. It is as if a body of water were to be
resolved into millions of tiny dew-drops for a time, and each dew-drop was then to acquire certain
outside material in solution. In that case, each dew-drop when it again returned to the body of
water, would carry with it its foreign material, which would become the property of the whole. And
subsequently formed dew-drops would carry in their substance a particle of the foreign matter
brought back home by the previous generation of dewdrops, and would thus be a little different
from their predecessors. And this process, continuing for many generations of dew-drops, would
ultimately cause the greatest changes in the composition of the successive generations.

This, in short, is the story of the change and improving forms of life. From the atoms into the
elements; from the lower elements into those forming protoplasm; from the protoplasm to the
lower forms of animal life; from these lower forms on to higher forms--this is the story. But it is all a
counterpart of the dew-drop and the body of water, until the human soul is evolved.

The plants and the lower forms of animal life are not permanent individual souls, but each family is
a group-soul corresponding to the body of water from which the dew-drop arose. From these
family group-souls gradually break off minor groups, representing species, and so on into
sub-species. At last when the forms reach the plane of man, the group-soul breaks itself up into
permanent individual souls, and true Metempsychosis begins. That is, each individual human soul
becomes a permanent individual entity, destined to evolve and perfect itself along the lines of
spiritual evolution.

And from this point begins our story of Spiritual Evolution.

The story of Man, the Individual, begins amidst humble surroundings. Primitive man, but little
above the level of the lower animals in point of intelligence, has nevertheless that distinguishing
mark of Individuality--"Self-Consciousness," which is the demarkation between Beast and Man. And
even the lowest of the lowest races had at least a "trace" of this Self-Consciousness, which made of Page 221
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them individuals, and caused the fragment of the race-soul to separate itself from the general
principle animating the race, and to fasten its "I" conscious upon itself, rather than upon the
underlying race-soul, along instinctive lines. Do you know just what this Self-Consciousness is, and
how it differs from the Physical Consciousness of the lower animals? Perhaps we had better pause a
moment to consider it at this place.

The lower animals are of course conscious of the bodies, and their wants, feelings, emotions,
desires, etc., and their actions are in response to the animating impulses coming from this plane of
consciousness. But it stops there. They "know," but they do not "know that they know"; that is,
they have not yet arrived at a state in which they can think of themselves as "I," and to reason upon
their thoughts and mental operations. It is like the consciousness of a very young child, which feels
and knows its sensations and wants, but is unable to think of itself as "I," and to turn the mental
gaze inward. In another book of these series we have used the illustration of the horse which has
been left standing out in the cold sleet and rain, and which undoubtedly feels and knows the
unpleasant sensations arising therefrom, and longs to get away from the unpleasant environment.
But, still, he is unable to analyze his mental states and wonder whether his master will come out to
him soon, or think how cruel it is to keep him out of his warm comfortable stable; or wonder
whether he will be taken out in the cold rain again tomorrow; or feel envious of other horses who
are indoors; or wonder why he is kept out cold nights, etc., etc. In short, the horse is unable to think
as would a reasoning man under just the same circumstances. He is aware of the discomfort, just as
would be the man; and he would run away home, if he were able, just as would the man. But he is
not able to pity himself, nor to think about his personality, as would a man--he is not able to
wonder whether life is worth the living, etc., as would a man. He "knows" but is not able to reflect
upon the "knowing."

In the above illustration, the principal point is that the horse does not "know himself" as an entity,
while even the most primitive man is able to so recognize himself as an "I." If the horse were able
to think in words, he would think "feel," "cold," "hurt," etc., but he would be unable to think "I feel;
I am cold; I am hurt," etc. The thought "I" would be missing.

It is true that the "I" consciousness of the primitive man was slight, and was but a degree above the
Physical Consciousness of the higher apes, but nevertheless it had sprung into being, never again to
be lost. The primitive man was like a child a few years old--he was able to say "I," and to think "I."
He had become an individual soul.

And this individual soul inhabited and animated a body but little removed from that of an ape. But
this new consciousness began to mould that rude body and the ascent was begun. Each generation
showed a physical improvement over that of the preceding one, according to the lines of physical
evolution, and as the developing soul demanded more perfect and developed bodies the bodies
were evolved to meet the demand, for the mental demand has ever been the cause of the physical

The soul of the primitive man reincarnated almost immediately after the death of the physical
body, because the experiences gained were mostly along the lines of the physical, the mental
planes being scarcely brought into play, while the higher and spiritual faculties were almost entirely Page 222
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obscured from sight. Life after life the soul of the primitive man lived out in rapid succession. But in
each new embodiment there was a slight advance over that of the previous one. Experience, or
rather the result of experiences, were carried over, and profited by. New lessons were learned and
unlearned, improved upon or discarded. And the race grew and unfolded.

After a time the number of advancing souls which had outstripped their fellows in progress became
sufficiently large for sub-races to be formed, and so the branching off process began. In this way
the various races and types were formed, and the progress of Mankind gained headway. At this
point we may as well consider the history of the Races of Mankind, that we may see how the great
tide-wave of Soul has ever pressed onward, marking higher and still higher stages of progress, and
also how the various minor waves of the great wave pushed in and then receded, only to be
followed by still higher waves. The story is most interesting.

The Yogi Teachings inform us that the Grand Cycle of Man's Life on the Earth is composed of Seven
Cycles, of which we are now living in the third-seventh part of the Fifth Cycle. These Cycles may be
spoken of as the Great Earth Periods, separated from each other by some great natural cataclysm
which destroyed the works of the previous races of men, and which started afresh the progress
called "civilization," which, as all students know, manifests a rise and fall like unto that of the tides.

Man in the First Cycle emerged from a gross animal-like state into a condition somewhat advanced.
It was a slow progress, but nevertheless a distinct series of advances were made by the more
progressive souls who passed over on to the Second Cycle, embodying themselves as the ruling
races in the same, their less progressive brothers incarnating in the lower tribes of the Second
Cycle. It must be remembered that the souls which do not advance during a Cycle reincarnate in
the next Cycle among the lower races. So that even in this Fifth Cycle we have remnants of the
previous cycles, the lives of the members of which give us an idea of what life in the earlier cycles
must have been.

The Yogi Teachings give us but little information regarding the people of the First and Second
Cycles, because of the low state of these ages. The tale, if told, would be the story of the
Cave-dweller, and Stone-age people; the Fire-peoples, and all the rest of savage, barbarian crew;
there was but little trace of anything like that which we call "civilization," although in the latter
periods of the Second Cycle the foundations for the coming civilizations were firmly laid.

After the cataclysm which destroyed the works of Man of the Second Cycle, and left the survivors
scattered or disorganized, awaiting the touch of the organizing urge which followed shortly
afterward, there dawned the first period of the Third Cycle. The scene of the life of the Third Cycle
was laid in what is known to Occultists as Lemuria. Lemuria was a mighty continent situated in what
is now known as the Pacific Ocean, and parts of the Indian Ocean. It included Australia, Australasia,
and other portions of the Pacific islands, which are in fact surviving portions of the great continent
of Lemuria, its highest points, the lower portion having sunk beneath the seas ages and ages ago.

Life in Lemuria is described as being principally concerned with the physical senses, and sensual
enjoyment, only a few developed souls having broken through the fetters of materiality and
reached the beginnings of the mental and spiritual planes of life. Some few indeed made great Page 223
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progress and were saved from the general wreck, in order to become the leaven which would
lighten the mass of mankind during the next Cycle. These developed souls were the teachers of the
new races, and were looked upon by the latter as gods and supernatural beings, and legends and
traditions concerning them are still existent among the ancient peoples of our present day. Many of
the myths of the ancient peoples arose in this way.

The Yogi traditions hold that just prior to the great cataclysm which destroyed the races of the
Second Cycle, there was a body of the Chosen Ones which migrated from Lemuria to certain islands
of the sea which are now part of the main land of India. These people formed the nucleus of the
Occult Teachings of the Lemurians, and developed into the Fount of Truth which has been flowing
ever since throughout the successive periods and cycles.

When Lemuria passed away, there arose from the depths of the ocean the continent which was to
be the scene of the life and civilization of the Fourth Cycle--the continent of Atlantis. Atlantis was
situated in a portion of what is now known as the Atlantic Ocean, beginning at what is now known
as the Caribbean Sea and extending over to the region of what is now known as Africa. What are
now known as Cuba and the West Indies were among the highest points of the continent, and now
stand like monuments to its departed greatness.

The civilization of Atlantis was remarkable, and its people attained heights which seem almost
incredible to even those who are familiar with the highest achievements of man in our own times.
The Chosen Ones preserved from the cataclysm which destroyed Lemuria, and who lived to a
remarkably old age, had stored up within their minds the wisdom and learning of the races that had
been destroyed, and they thus gave the Atlanteans an enormous starting-advantage. They soon
attained great advancement along all the lines of human endeavor. They perfected mechanical
inventions and appliances, reaching far ahead of even our present attainments. In the field of
electricity especially they reached the stages that our present races will reach in about two or three
hundred years from now. Along the lines of Occult Attainment their progress was far beyond the
dreams of the average man of our own race, and in fact from this arose one of the causes of their
downfall, for they prostituted the power to base and selfish uses, and Black Magic.

And, so the decline of Atlantis began. But the end did not come at once, or suddenly, but gradually.
The continent, and its surrounding islands gradually sank beneath the waves of the Atlantic Ocean,
the process occupying over 10,000 years. The Greeks and Romans of our own Cycle had traditions
regarding the sinking of the continent, but their knowledge referred only to the disappearance of
the small remainder--certain islands--the continent itself having disappeared thousands of years
before their time. It is recorded that the Egyptian priests had traditions that the continent itself had
disappeared nine thousand years before their time. As was the case with the Chosen Ones of
Lemuria, so was it with the Elect of Atlantis, who were taken away from the doomed land some
time prior to its destruction. The few advanced people left their homes and migrated to portions of
what are now South America and Central America, but which were then islands of the sea. These
people have left their traces of their civilization and works, which our antiquaries are discovering
to-day. Page 224
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When the Fifth Cycle dawned (our own cycle, remember) these brave and advanced souls acted as
the race-teachers and became as "gods" to those who came afterward. The races were very prolific,
and multiplied very rapidly under the most favorable conditions. The souls of the Atlanteans were
pressing forward for embodiment, and human forms were born to supply the demand. And now
begins the history of our own Cycle--the Fifth Cycle.

But before we begin a consideration of the Fifth Cycle, let us consider for a moment a few points
about the laws operating to cause these great changes.

In the first place, each Cycle has a different theatre for its work and action. The continent of
Lemuria was not in existence during the Second Cycle, and arose from the ocean bed only when its
appointed time came. And, likewise the continent of Atlantis reposed beneath the waves while the
Lemurian races manifested during the Third Cycle, rising by means of a convulsion of the earth's
surface to play its part during its own period--the Fourth Cycle--only to sink again beneath the
waves to make way for the birth of the Fifth Cycle with its races. By means of these cataclysms the
races of each Cycle were wiped out when the time came, the few Elect or Chosen ones, that is
those who have manifested the right to live on, being carried away to some favorable environment
where they became as leaven to the mass--as "gods" to the new races that quickly appear.

It must be remembered, however, that these Chosen Ones are not the only ones saved from the
destruction that overtakes the majority of the race. On the contrary a few survivors are preserved,
although driven away from their former homes, and reduced to "first principles of living" in order to
become the parents of the new races. The new races springing from the fittest of these survivors
quickly form sub-races, being composed of the better adapted souls seeking reincarnation, while
the less fit sink into barbarism, and show evidences of decay, although a remnant drags on for
thousands of years, being composed of the souls of those who have not advanced sufficiently to
take a part in the life of the new races. These "left-overs" are in evidence in our own times in the
cases of the Australian savages, and some of the African tribes, as well as among the Digger Indians
and others of similar grade of intelligence.

In order to understand the advance of each race it must be remembered that the more advanced
souls, after passing out of the body, have a much longer period of rest in the higher planes, and
consequently do not present themselves for reincarnation until a period quite late when compared
with the hasty reincarnation of the less advanced souls who are hurried back to rebirth by reason of
the strong earthly attachments and desires. In this way it happens that the earlier races of each
Cycle are more primitive folk than those who follow them as the years roll by. The soul of an
earth-bound person reincarnates in a few years, and sometimes in a few days, while the soul of an
advanced man may repose and rest on the higher planes for centuries--nay, even for thousands of
years, until the earth has reached a stage in which the appropriate environment may be afforded it.

Observers, unconnected with Occultism, have noted certain laws which seem to regulate the rise
and fall of nations--the procession of ruling races. They do not understand the law of
Metempsychosis that alone gives the key to the problem, but nevertheless they have not failed to
record the existence of the laws themselves. In order to show that these laws are recognized by Page 225
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persons who are not at all influenced by the Occult Teachings, we take the liberty of quoting from
Draper's "History of the Intellectual Development of Europe."

Dr. Draper writes as follows: "We are, as we often say, the creatures of circumstances. In that
expression there is a higher philosophy than might at first appear. From this more accurate point of
view we should therefore consider the course of these events, recognizing the principle that the
affairs of men pass forward in a determinate way, expanding and unfolding themselves. And hence
we see that the things of which we have spoken as if they were matters of choice, were in reality
forced upon their apparent authors by the necessity of the times. But in truth they should be
considered as the presentation of a certain phase of life which nations in their onward course
sooner or later assume. To the individual, how well we know that a sober moderation of action, an
appropriate gravity of demeanor, belonging to the mature period of life, change from the wanton
willfulness of youth, which may be ushered in, or its beginnings marked by many accidental
incidents; in one perhaps by domestic bereavements, in another by the loss of fortune, in a third by
ill-health. We are correct enough in imputing to such trials the change of character; but we never
deceive ourselves by supposing that it would have failed to take place had these incidents not
occurred. There runs an irresistible destiny in the midst of these vicissitudes. There are analogies
between the life of a nation, and that of an individual, who, though he may be in one respect the
maker of his own fortunes, for happiness or for misery, for good or for evil, though he remains here
or goes there as his inclinations prompt, though he does this or abstains from that as he chooses, is
nevertheless held fast by an inexorable fate--a fate which brought him into the world involuntarily,
so far as he was concerned, which presses him forward through a definite career, the stages of
which are absolutely invariable,--infancy, childhood, youth, maturity, old age, with all

their characteristic actions and passions,--and which removes him from the scene at the appointed
time, in most cases against his will. So also is it with nations; the voluntary is only the outward
semblance, covering but hardly hiding the predetermined. Over the events of life we may have
control, but none whatever over the law of its progress. There is a geometry that applies to nations
an equation of their curve of advance. That no mortal man can touch."

This remarkable passage, just quoted, shows how the close observers of history note the rise and
fall of the tides of human race progress, although ignorant of the real underlying causing energy or
force. A study of the Occult Teachings alone gives one the hidden secret of human actions and
throws the bright light of Truth upon the dark corners of phenomena.

At the beginning of the Fifth Cycle (which is the present one), there were not only the beginnings of
the new races which always spring up at the beginning of each new cycle and which are the
foundations for the coming races which take advantage of the fresh conditions and opportunities
for growth and development--but there were also the descendants of the Elect Saved from the
destruction of Atlantis by having been led away and colonized far from the scene of danger. The
new races were the descendant of the scattered survivors of the Atlantean peoples, that is, the
common run of people of the time. But the Elect few were very superior people, and imparted to
their descendants their knowledge and wisdom. So that we see at the beginning of the Fifth Cycle
hordes of new, primitive people in certain lands, and in other places advanced nations like the
ancestors of the Ancient Egyptians, Persians, Chaldeans, Hindus, etc. Page 226
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These advanced races were old souls--advanced souls--the progressed and developed souls of
Ancient Lemuria and Atlantis, who lived their lives and who are now either on higher planes of life,
or else are among us to-day taking a leading part in the world's affairs, striving mightily to save the
present races from the misfortunes which overtook their predecessors.

The descendants of the people were the Assyrians and Babylonians. In due time the primitive new
races developed and the great Roman, Grecian, and Carthaginian peoples appeared. Then came the
rise of other peoples and nations down to the present time. Each race or nation has its rise, its
height of attainment, and its decline. When a nation begins to decline it is because its more
advanced souls have passed on, and only the less progressive souls are left. The history of all
nations show the truth of the Occult the term. Men are forsaking old ideals, creeds and dogmas,
and are running hither and thither seeking something they feel to be necessary, but of the nature
of which they know nothing. They are feeling the hunger for Peace--the thirst for

Knowledge--and they are seeking satisfaction in all directions.

This is not only the inevitable working of the Law of Evolution, but is also a manifestation of the
power and love of the great souls that have passed on to higher planes of existence, and who have
become as angels and arch-angels. These beings are filled with the love of the race, and are setting
into motion influences that are being manifest in many directions, the tendency of which are to
bring the race to a realization of its higher power, faculties, and destiny.

As we have said in other places, one of the greatest difficulties in the way of the seeker after Truth
in his consideration of the question of Spiritual Evolution is the feeling that rebirth is being forced
upon him, without any say on his part, and against his desires. But this is far from being correct. It is
true that the whole process is according to the Great Law, but that Law operates through the force
of Desire and Attraction. The soul is attracted toward rebirth by reason of its desire or rather the
essence of its desires. It is reborn only because it has within itself the desire for further experience,
and opportunity for unfoldment. And it is reborn into certain environments solely because it has
within itself unsatisfied desires for those environments, etc. The process is just as regular and
scientific as is the attraction of one atom of matter for another.

Each soul has within itself certain elements of desire and attraction, and it attracts to itself certain
conditions and experiences, and is in turn attracted by these things. This is the law of life, in the
body and out of it. And there is no injustice in the law it is the essence of justice itself, for it gives to
each just what is required to fill the indwelling desires, or else the conditions and experiences
designed to burn out the desires which are holding one back, and the destruction of which will
make possible future advancement.

For instance, if one is bound by the inordinate desire for material wealth, the Law of Karma will
attract him to a rebirth in conditions in which he will be surrounded by wealth and luxury until he
becomes sickened with them and will find his heart filled with the desire to flee from them and
toward higher and more satisfying things. Of course the Law of Karma acts in other ways, as we
shall see in our next lesson--it deals with one's debts and obligations, also. The Law of Karma is Page 227
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closely connected with Metempsychosis, and one must be considered in connection with the other,

Not only is it true that man's rebirths are in strict accordance with the law of Attraction and Desire,
but it is also true that after he attains a certain stage of spiritual unfoldment he enters into the
conscious stage of rebirth, and thereafter he is reborn consciously and with full foreknowledge.
Many are now entering into this stage of development, and have a partial consciousness of their
past lives, which also implies that they have had at least a partial consciousness of approaching
rebirth, for the two phases of consciousness run together.

Those individuals of a race who have outstripped their fellows in spiritual unfoldment, are still
bound by the Karma of the particular race to which they belong, up to a certain point. And as the
entire race, or at least a large proportion of it, must move forward as a whole, such individuals
must needs wait also. But they are not compelled to suffer a tiresome round of continued rebirths
amid environments and conditions which they have outgrown. On the contrary, the advanced
individual soul is allowed to wait until the race reaches its own stage of advancement, when it again
joins in the upward movement, in full consciousness, however. In the interim he may pass his well
earned rest either on some of the higher planes of rest, or else in conscious temporary sojourn in
other material spheres helping in the great work as a Teacher and worker for Good and Spiritual
Evolution among those who need such help. In fact there are in the world to-day, individual souls
which have reached similar stages on other planets, and who are spending their rest period here
amidst the comparatively lower Earth conditions, striving to lift up the Earth souls to greater

So long as people allow themselves to become attached to material objects, so long will they be
reborn in conditions in which these objects bind them fast. It is only when the soul frees itself from
these entangling obstructions that it is born in conditions of freedom. Some outgrow these material
attachments by right thinking and reasoning, while others seem to be compelled to live them out,
and thus outlive them, before they are free. At last when the soul realizes that these things are
merely incidents of the lower personality, and have naught to do with the real individuality, then,
and then only, do they fall from it like a wornout cloak, and are left behind while it bounds forward
on The Path fresh from the lighter weight being carried.

The Yogi Philosophy teaches that Man will live forever, ascending from higher to higher planes, and
then on and on and on. Death is but the physical symbol of a period of Soul Rest, similar to sleep of
the tired body, and is just as much to be welcomed and greeted with thanks. Life is continuous, and
its object is development, unfoldment and growth. We are in Eternity now as much as we ever shall
be. Our souls may exist out of the body as well as in it, although bodily incarnation is necessary at
this stage of our development. As we progress on to higher planes of life, we shall incarnate in
bodies far more ethereal than those now used by us, just as in the past we used bodies almost
incredibly grosser and coarser than those we call our own to-day. Life is far more than a thing of
three-score and ten years--it is really a succession of such lives, on an ascending scale, that which
we call our personal self to-day being merely the essence of the experiences of countless lives in
the past. Page 228
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The Soul is working steadily upward, from higher to higher, from gross to finer forms and
manifestations. And it will steadily work for ages to come, always progressing, always advancing,
always unfolding. The Universe contains many worlds for the Soul to inhabit, and then after it has
passed on to other Universes, there will still be Infinitude before it. The destiny of the Soul of Man
is of wondrous promise and possibilities--the mind to-day cannot begin to even dream of what is
before the Soul. Those who have already advanced many steps beyond you--those Elder
Brethren--are constantly extending to you aid in many directions. They are extending to you the
Unseen Hand, which lifts you over many a hard place and dangerous crossing--but you recognize it
not except in a vague way. There are now in existence, on planes infinitely higher than your own,
intelligences of transcendent glory and magnificence--but they were once Men even as you are
to-day. They have so far progressed upon the Path that they have become as angels and archangels
when compared with you. And, blessed thought, even as these exalted ones were once even as
you, so shall you, in due course of Spiritual Evolution, become even as these mighty ones.

The Yogi Philosophy teaches that You who are reading these lines have lived many lives previous to
the present one. You have lived in the lower forms, and have worked your way arduously along the
Path until now you are reaching the stage of Spiritual Consciousness in which the past and future
will begin to appear plain to you for the first time. You have lived as the cave-man--the
cliff-dweller--the savage--the barbarian. You have been the warrior--the priest--the Medieval
scholar and occultist--the prince--the pauper. You have lived in Lemuria--in Atlantis--in India--in
Persia--in Egypt--in ancient Rome and Greece--and are now playing your part in the Western
civilization, associating with many with whom you have had relations in your past lives.

In closing this lesson, let us quote from a previous writing from the same pen that writes this

"Toward what goal is all this Spiritual Evolution tending? What does it all mean? From the low
planes of life to the highest--all are on The Path. To what state or place does The Path lead? Let us
attempt to answer by asking you to imagine a series of millions of circles, one within the other.
Each circle means a stage of Life. The outer circles are filled with life in its lowest and most material
stages--each circle nearer the Centre holds higher and higher forms--until Men (or what were once
Men) become as gods. Still on, and on, and on. does the form of life grow higher, until the human
mind cannot grasp the idea.

But what is the Centre? The MIND of the entire Spiritual Body--the ABSOLUTE! And we are traveling
toward that Centre!"

And again from the same source:

"But beyond your plane, and beyond mine, are plane after plane, connected with our earth, the
splendors of which man cannot conceive. And there are likewise many planes around the other
planets of our chain--and there are millions of other worlds--and there are chains of universes just
as there are chains of planets--and then greater groups of these chains--and so on greater and
grander beyond the power of man to imagine--on and on and on and on--higher and higher--to
inconceivable heights. An infinity of infinities of worlds are before us. Our world and our planetary Page 229
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system and our system of suns, and our system of solar systems, are but as grains of sand on the
beach of the mighty ocean. But then you cry, 'But what am I--poor mortal thing--lost among all this
inconceivable greatness?' The answer comes that You are that most precious thing--a living soul.
And if you were destroyed the whole system of universes would crumble, for you are as necessary
as the greatest part of it--it cannot do without you--you cannot be lost or destroyed--you are a part
of it all, and are eternal. 'But,' you ask, 'beyond all of this of which you have told me, what is
there--what is the Centre of it All?' Your Teacher's face takes on a rapt expression--a light not of
earth beams forth from his countenance. 'THE ABSOLUTE!' he replies. Page 230
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"Karma" is a Sanscrit term for that great Law known to Western thinkers as Spiritual Cause and
Effect, or Causation. It relates to the complicated affinities for either good or evil that have been
acquired by the soul throughout its many incarnations. These affinities manifest as characteristics
enduring from one incarnation to another, being added to here, softened or altered there, but
always pressing forward for expression and manifestation. And, so, it follows that what each one of
us is in this life depends upon is what we have been and how we have acted in our past lives.

Throughout the operations of the Law of Karma the manifestation of Perfect Justice is apparent.
We are not punished for our sins, as the current beliefs have it, but instead we are punished by our
sins. We are not rewarded for our good acts, but we received our reward through and by
characteristics, qualities, affinities, etc., acquired by reason of our having performed these good
acts in previous lives. We are our own judges and executioners. In our present lives we are storing
up good or bad Karma which will stick to us closely, and which will demand expression and
manifestation in lives to come. When we fasten around ourselves the evil of bad Karma, we have
taken to shelter a monster which will gnaw into our very vitals until we shake him off by developing
opposite qualities. And when we draw to ourselves the good Karma of Duty well performed,
kindness well expressed, and Good Deeds freely performed without hope of reward, then do we
weave for ourselves the beautiful garments which we are destined to wear upon the occasion of
our future lives.

The Yogi Teachings relating to the Law of Karma do not teach us that Sin is an offense against the
Power which brought us into being, so much as it is an offense against ourselves. We cannot injure
the Absolute, nor harm It in any way. But we may harm each other, and in so doing harm ourselves.
The Yogis teach that Sin is largely a matter of ignorance and misunderstanding of our true nature,
and that the lesson must be well learned until we are able to see the folly and error of our former
course, and thus are able to remedy our past errors and to avoid their recurrence. By Karma the
effects arising from our sins cling to us, until we become sick and weary of them, and seek their
cause in our hearts. When we have discovered the evil cause of these effects, we learn to hate it
and tear it from us as a foul thing, and are thence evermore relieved of it.

The Yogis view the sinning soul as the parent does the child who will persist in playing with
forbidden things. The parent cautions the child against playing with the stove, but still the child
persists in its disobedience, and sooner or later receives a burn for its meddling. The burn is not a
punishment for the disobedience (although it may seem so to it) but comes in obedience to a
natural law which is invariable. To child finds out that stoves and burns are connected, and begins
to see some sense and reason in the admonitions of the parent. The love of the parent sought to
save the child the pain of the burn, and yet the child-nature persisted in experimenting, and was
taught the lesson. But the lesson once thoroughly learned, it is not necessary to forbid the child the
stove, for it has learned the danger for itself and thereafter avoids it.

And thus it is with the human soul passing on from one life to another. It learns new lessons,
gathers new experiences, and learns to recognize the pain that invariably comes from Wrong Page 231
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Action, and the Happiness that invariably comes from Right Action. As it progresses it learns how
hurtful certain courses of action are, and like the burnt child it avoids them thereafter.

If we will but stop to consider for a moment the relative degrees of temptation to us and to others,
we may see the operations of past Karma in former lives. Why is it that this thing is "no temptation"
to you, while it is the greatest temptation to another. Why is it that certain things do not seem to
have any attraction for him, and yet they attract you so much that you have to use all of your will
power to resist them? It is because of the Karma in your past lives. The things that do not now
tempt you, have been outlived in some former life, and you have profited by your own experiences,
or those of others, or else through some teaching given you by one who had been attracted to you
by your unfolding consciousness of Truth.

We are profiting to-day by the lessons of our past lives. If we have learned them well we are
receiving the benefit, while if we have turned our backs on the words of wisdom offered us, or have
refused to learn the lesson perfectly, we are compelled to sit on the same old school-benches and
hear the same old lesson repeated until it is fairly driven into our consciousness. We wonder why it
is that other persons can perform certain evil acts that seem so repulsive to us, and are apt to pride
ourselves upon our superior virtue. But those who know, realize that their unfortunate brethren
have not paid sufficient attention to the lesson of the past, and are having it repeated to them in a
more drastic form this time. They know that the virtuous ones are simply reaping the benefit of
their own application in the past, but that their lesson is not over, and that unless they advance and
hold fast to that which they have attained, as well, they will be outstripped by many of those whose
failure they are now viewing with wonder and scorn.

It is hard for us to fully realize that we are what we are because of our past experiences. It is
difficult for us to value the experiences that we are now going through, because we do not fully
appreciate the value of bitter experiences once lived out and outlived. Let us look back over the
experiences of this present life, for instance. How many bitter episodes are there which we wish
had never happened, and how we wish we could tear them out of our consciousness. But we do
not realize that from these same bitter experiences came knowledge and wisdom that we would
not part with under any circumstances. And yet if we were to tear away from us the cause of these
benefits, we would tear away the benefits also, and would find ourselves back just where we were
before the experience happened to us. What we would like to do is to hold on to the benefits that
came from the experience---the knowledge and wisdom that were picked from the tree of pain. But
we cannot separate the effect from the cause in this way, and must learn to look back upon these
bitter experiences as the causes from which our present knowledge, wisdom and attainment
proceeded. Then may we cease to hate these things, and to see that good may come from evil,
under the workings of the Law.

And when we are able to do this, we shall be able to regard the painful experiences of our present
day as the inevitable outcome of causes away back in our past, but which will work surely toward
increased knowledge, wisdom and attainment, if we will but see the Good underlying the working
of the Law. When we fall in with the working of the Law of Karma we recognize its pain not as an
injustice or punishment, but as the beneficent operation of a Law which, although apparently
working Evil, has for its end and aim Ultimate Good. Page 232
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Many object to the teachings of the Law of Karma by saying that the experiences of each life not
being remembered, must be useless and without value. This is a very foolish position to take
concerning the matter. These experiences although not fully remembered, are not lost to us at
all--they are made a part of the material of which our minds are composed. They exist in the form
of feelings, characteristics, inclinations, likes and dislikes, affinities, attractions, repulsions, etc.,
etc., and are as much in evidence as are the experiences of yesterday which are fresh in our
memory. Look back over your present life, and try to remember the experiences of the past years.
You will find that you remember but few of the events of your life. The pressing and constant
experiences of each of the days that you have lived have been, for the most part, forgotten. Though
these experiences may have seemed very vivid and real to you when they occurred, still they have
faded into nothingness now, and they are to all intents and purposes lost to you. But are they lost?
Not at all. You are what you are because of the results of these experiences. Your character has
been moulded and shaped, little by little, by these apparently forgotten pains, pleasures, sorrows
and happinesses. This trial strengthened you along certain lines; that one changed your point of
view and made you see things with a broader sweep of vision. This grief caused you to feel the pain
of others; that disappointment spurred you on to new endeavors. And each and every one of them
left a permanent mark upon your personality--upon your character. All men are what they are by
reason of what they have lived through and out. And though these happenings, scenes,
circumstances, occurrences, experiences, have faded from the memory, their effects are indelibly
imprinted upon the fabric of the character, and the man of to-day is different from what he would
have been had the happening or experience not entered into his life.

And this same rule applies to the characteristics brought over from past incarnations. You have not
the memory of the experiences, but you have the fruit in the shape of "characteristics," tastes,
inclinations, etc. You have a tendency toward certain things, and a distaste for others. Certain
things attract, while others repel you. All of these things are the result of your experiences in
former incarnations. Your very taste and inclination toward occult studies which has caused you to
read these lessons is your legacy from some former life in which some one spoke a word or two to
you regarding the subject, and attracted your interest and desire. You learned some little about the
subject then--perhaps much--and developed a desire for more knowledge along these lines, which
manifesting in your present life has brought you in contact with further instruction. The same
inclination will lead to further advancement in this life, and still greater opportunities in future
incarnations. Nearly every one who reads these lines has felt that much of this occult instruction
imparted is but a "re-learning" of something previously known, although many of the things taught
have never been heard before in this life. You pick up a book and read something, and know at
once that it is so, because in some vague way you have a consciousness of having studied and
worked out the problem in some past period of your lives. All this is the working of the Law of
Karma, which caused you to attract that for which you have an affinity, and which also causes
others to be attracted to you.

Many are the reunions of people who have been related to each other in previous lives. The old
loves, and old hates work out their Karmic results in our lives. We are bound to those whom we
have loved, and also to those whom we may have injured. The story must be worked out to the
end, although a knowledge of the Law undoubtedly relieves one of many entangling attachments Page 233
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and Karmic relationships, by pointing out the nature of the relation, and enabling one to free
himself mentally from the bond, which process tends to dissolve much of the Karmic

Life is a great school for the learning of lessons. It has many grades, many classes, many scales of
progress. And the lessons must be learned whether we will or no. If we refuse or neglect to learn
the lesson we are sent back to accomplish the task, again and again, until the lesson is finally
learned. Nothing once learned is ever forgotten entirely. There is an indelible imprint of the lesson
in our character, which manifests as predispositions, tastes, inclinations, etc. All that goes to make
up that which we call "Character" is the workings of the Law of Karma. There is no such thing as
Chance. Nothing ever "happens." All is regulated by the Law of Cause and Effect or Karma. As a man
sows so shall he reap, in a literal sense. You are what you are to-day, by reason of what you were in
your last life. And in your next life you will be what you are making of yourself to-day. You are your
own judge, and executioner--your own bestower of rewards. But the Love of the Absolute is ever
working to lead you upward to the Light, and to open your soul to that knowledge that, in the
words of the Yogis, "burns up Karma," and enables you to throw off the burden of Cause and Effect
that you have been carrying around with you, and which has weighted you down.

In the Fourteen Lessons we quoted from Mr. Berry Benson, a writer in the Century Magazine for
May, 1894. The quotation fits so beautifully into this place, that we venture to reproduce it here
once more, with your permission. It reads as follows:

"A little boy went to school. He was very little. All that he knew he had drawn in with his mother's
milk. His teacher (who was God) placed him in the lowest class, and gave him these lessons to
learn: Thou shalt not kill. Thou shalt do no hurt to any living thing. Thou shalt not steal. So the man
did not kill; but he was cruel, and he stole. At the end of the day (when his beard was gray--when
the night was come) his teacher (who was God) said: Thou hast learned not to kill, but the other
lessons thou hast not learned. Come back tomorrow.

"On the morrow he came back a little boy. And his teacher (who was God) put him in a class a little
higher, and gave him these lessons to learn: Thou shalt do no hurt to any living thing. Thou shalt
not steal. Thou shalt not cheat. So the man did no hurt to any living thing; but he stole and cheated.
And at the end of the day (when his beard was gray--when the night was come) his teacher (who
was God) said: Thou hast learned to be merciful. But the other lessons thou hast not learned. Come
back tomorrow.

"Again, on the morrow, he came back, a little boy. And his teacher (who was God) put him in a class
yet a little higher, and gave him these lessons to learn: Thou shalt not steal. Thou shalt not cheat.
Thou shalt not covet. So the man did not steal; but he cheated and he coveted. And at the end of
the day (when his beard was gray--when the night was come) his teacher (who was God) said: Thou
hast learned not to steal. But the other lessons thou hast not learned. Come back, my child,

"This is what I have read in the faces of men and women, in the book of the world, and in the scroll
of the heavens, which is writ with stars." Page 234
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Under the operation of the Law of Karma every man is master of his own destiny--he rewards
himself--he punishes himself--he builds, tears down and develops his character, always, however,
under the brooding influence of the Absolute which is Love Infinite and which is constantly exerting
the upward spiritual urge, which is drawing the soul toward its ultimate haven of rest. Man must,
and does, work out his own salvation and destiny, but the upward urge is always there--never
tiring--never despairing--knowing always that Ultimate Victory belongs to the soul.

Under the Law of Karma every action, yea, every thought as well, has its Karmic effect upon the
future incarnations of the soul. And, not exactly in the nature of punishment or rewards, in the
general acceptation of the term, but as the invariable operation of the Law of Cause and Effect. The
thoughts of a person are like seeds which seek to press forward into growth, bud, blossom and
fruit. Some spring into growth in this life, while others are carried over into future lives. The actions
of this life may represent only the partial growth of the thought seed, and future lives may be
necessary for its full blossoming and fruition. Of course, the individual who understands the Truth,
and who has mentally divorced himself from the fruits of his actions--who has robbed material
Desire of its vital force by seeing it as it is, and not as a part of his Real Self--his seed-thoughts do
not spring into blossom and fruit in future lives, for he has killed their germ. The Yogis express this
thought by the illustration of the baked-seeds. They show their pupils that while ordinary seeds
sprout, blossom and bear fruit, still if one bakes the seeds their vitality is gone, and while they may
serve the purposes of a nourishing meal still they can never cause sprout, blossom or fruit. Then the
pupil is instructed in the nature of Desire, and shown how desires invariably spring into plant,
blossom and fruit, the life of the person being the soil in which they flourish. But Desires
understood, and set off from the Real Man, are akin to baked-seeds--they have been subjected to
the heat of spiritual wisdom and are thus robbed of their vitality, and are unable to bear fruit. In
this way the understood and mastered Desire bears no Karmic fruit of future action.

The Yogis teach that there are two great principles at work in the matter of Karmic Law affecting
the conditions of rebirth. The first principle is that whereby the prevailing desires, aspirations, likes,
and dislikes, loves and hates, attractions and repulsions, etc., press the soul into conditions in which
these characteristics may have a favorable and congenial soil for development. The second
principle is that which may be spoken of as the urge of the unfolding Spirit, which is always urging
forward toward fuller expression, and the breaking down of confining sheaths, and which thus
exerts a pressure upon the soul awaiting reincarnation which causes it to seek higher environments
and conditions than its desires and aspiration, as well as its general characteristics, would demand.
These two apparently conflicting (and yet actually harmonious) principles acting and reacting upon
each other, determine the conditions of rebirth, and have a very material effect upon the Karmic
Law. One's life is largely a conflict between these two forces, the one tending to hold the soul to
the present conditions resulting from past lives, and the other ever at work seeking to uplift and
elevate it to greater heights.

The desires and characteristics brought over from the past lives, of course, seek fuller expression
and manifestation upon the lines of the past lives. These tendencies simply wish to be let alone and
to grow according to their own laws of development and manifestation. But the unfolding Spirit,
knowing that the soul's best interests are along the lines of spiritual unfoldment and growth, brings Page 235
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a steady pressure to bear, life after life, upon the soul, causing it to gradually kill out the lower
desires and characteristics, and to develop qualities which tend to lead it upward instead of
allowing it to remain on its present level, there to bring to blossom and fruit many low thoughts
and desires. Absolute Justice reigns over the operations of the Law of Karma, but back of that and
superior even to its might is found the Infinite Love of the absolute which tends to Redeem the
race. It is that love that is back of all the upward tendencies of the soul, and which we all feel within
our inner selves in our best moments. The light of the Spirit (Love) is ever there.

Our relationship to others in past lives has its effect upon the working of the Law of Karma. If in the
past we have formed attachments for other individuals, either through love or hate; either by
kindness or cruelty; these attachments manifest in our present life, for these persons are bound to
us, and we to them, by the bonds of Karma, until the attachment is worn out. Such people will in
the present life have certain relationships to us, the object of which is the working out of the
problems in which we are mutually concerned, the adjustment of relationship, the "squaring up" of
accounts, the development of both. We are apt to be placed in a position to receive hurts from
those whom we have hurt in past lives, and this not through the idea of revenge, but by the
inexorable working out of the Law of Compensation in Karmic adjustments. And when we are
helped, comforted and receive favors from those who we helped in past lives, it is not merely a
reward, but the operation of the same law of Justice. The person who hurts us in this way may have
no desire to do so, and may even be distressed because he is used as an instrument in this way, but
the Karmic Law places him in a position where he unwittingly and without desire acts so that you
receive pain through him. Have you not felt yourselves hurting another, although you had no desire
and intention of so doing, and, in fact, were sorely distressed because you could not prevent the
pain? This Is the operation of Karma. Have you not found yourself placed where you unexpectedly
were made the bestower of favors upon some almost unknown persons? This is Karma. The Wheel
turns slowly, but it makes the complete circle.

Karma is the companion law to Metempsychosis. The two are inextricably connected, and their
operations are closely interwoven. Constant and unvarying in operation, Karma manifests upon and
in worlds, planets, races, nations, families and persons Everywhere in space is the great law in
operation in some form. The so-called mechanical operations called Causation are as much a phase
of Karma as is the highest phases manifest on the higher planes of life, far beyond our own. And
through it all is ever the urge toward perfection--the upward movement of all life. The Yogi
teachings regard the Universe as a mighty whole, and the Law of Karma as the one great law
operating and manifesting through that whole.

How different is the workings of this mighty Law from the many ideas advanced by man to account
for the happenings of life. Mere Chance is no explanation, for the careful thinker must inevitably
come to the conclusion that in an Universe governed by law, there can be no room for Chance. And
to suppose that all rewards and punishments are bestowed by a personal deity, in answer to
prayers, supplications, good behavior, offerings, etc., is to fall back into the childhood stage of the
race thought. The Yogis teach that the sorrow, suffering and affliction witnessed on all sides of us,
as well as the joy, happiness and blessings also in evidence, are not caused by the will or whim of
some capricious deity to reward his friends and punish his enemies--but by the working of an Page 236
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invariable Law which metes out to each his measure of good and ill according to his Karmic
attachments and relationships.

Those who are suffering, and who see no cause for their pain, are apt to complain and rebel when
they see others of no apparent merit enjoying the good things of life which have been denied their
apparently more worthy brethren. The churches have no answer except "It is God'