One Reason I Now Limit My Theosophical Audiences

Several decades ago I was asked to speak at a Theosophical summer convention held in Wheaton, Illinois. My message then (as it continues to be now) was that at least some of H.P. Blavatsky's [1831-1891] "esoteric" teachings (e.g., "Rounds," "Root-Races," "Sub-Races," etc.) could have been speculatively produced by making as-below-so-Above ANALOGIES out of the six varieties of psychological consciousnesses which ancient/modern sages, yogis, and perhaps even Blavatsky herself, may or may not have introspectively observed while meditating.

I surmised then, and still surmise now, that the more important, down-to-earth value of such an exercise might actually come from reversing the process: that is, using the more familiar one-half of the Hermetic Emerald Tablet axiom, the as-Above-so-below, to help identify the psychological "Levels"—the belows—which were used to analogically produce Blavatsky's grand transcendental Cosmogenetic and Anthropogenetic teachings—the Aboves.

For some reason I thought that this pragmatic type of esotericism would be of enormous interest to the Theosophists attending my talk that summer. After all, the psychological Levels of consciousness I was outlining are where the myriad of "tainted I-am's" of every flavor (animating, physical, emotional, and mental) not only show-up, but also screw-up, most people's chance for complete Adept management of their normal waking lives. Such temporary identity-mistakes continually arise, pass away, and then either re-arise or are immediately replaced by other identity-mistakes—the churning mishmash thereby perhaps qualifying, right after everyone's inevitable death, as the second-most basic "human condition" of all. . . .

Nevertheless, I suppose I should have realized that I could not present this in anything even close to entertainment-grade form. Of course, it also did not help that I could not resist several times catechistically reciting all six categories of false-ego-creating differentiated consciousnesses—animating, physical/sensory, desire-feeling, desire-mental, mental, Spirit-mental—and then follow each with a salt-rub of its Eastern equivalent—pranamaya, annamaya, kamamaya, kama-manomaya, manomaya, Buddhi-manomaya.

Finally, maybe predictable as well, I suppose, should have been the powerful, long-lasting result my talk would have: specifically, that even to this day I have never again been asked to speak from a national Theosophical podium. . . .

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Comment by Richard Ihle on May 10, 2018 at 9:17am

Greetings and good wishes, Dewald.

Re your question: "Offering advice on 'complete Adept management of their normal waking lives' seems a lofty goal. Is there any reason one should turn to you as a guide?"

Answer: No. That Is Another Reason I Now Limit My Theosophical Audiences.

Comment by Dewald Bester on May 10, 2018 at 4:16am

Hi Richard, 

I think you make an interesting point on 'reversing' the analogy. But, to really assess its value you would need to present a reasoned study. It is a shame that the TS did not produce public forums for speculations of these sorts. Any idea must earn its place.

If I've understood you, and this is not certain.

I see no problem with temporary identity mistakes. We are on an infinite evolutionary journey with stages. If completing a stage is an identity mistake for you, I am not sure I am worried about this criticism.

I grimaced at this statement of yours:

After all, the psychological Levels of consciousness I was outlining are where the myriad of "tainted I-am's" of every flavor (animating, physical, emotional, and mental) not only show-up, but also screw-up, most people's chance for complete Adept management of their normal waking lives.

Offering advice on 'complete Adept management of their normal waking lives' seems a lofty goal. Is there any reason one should turn to you as a guide?

But, my real point on your article is this.

Your seeming exclusion from being invited to speak at TS events, Lodges, whatever the case may be. I think this was/is a pity. You clearly know the TS vocabulary and have engaged with the concepts. This is precisely what the TS needs - people to creatively engage. Not that everyone or anyone need agree with you, but, if you could arouse interest in focused TS meetings that may be fruitful.

Manipulating or reworking the TS presentation shouldnt, perhaps, be engaged in in public forums. It creates confusion amongst peoples who know nothing about the TS. Your type of more sophisticated engagement belongs in restricted TS groups where they could be engaged with and assessed. But, the only real assessment is in the fruit. And the fruit is your life which, if imbued with compassion and helpfulness towards general humanity, would show some value in your perspectives. Though value could never be limited to one take on any issue.

Basically, the TS (I am thinking specifically of Adyar here) became a church and became afraid of conversation, heresy, doctrinal disputes, differences of opinion and the like. I think these are all healthy parts of a vibrant community.

It is a pity that the TS or a specific Lodge could not incorporate a space for you.

As the TS is seemingly collapsing, now is the time to re-engage and re-build. That is how I see the present situation.

Dewald

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