Seeking the Presence
IN YOGA teaching the causes of evil must be sought in the self-created universe where dwells the “I am.” Long has humanity sought to explain the why of evil by objective analysis. But the cause of a thing is not within the thing, and the cause of the underworld is to be found neither in the crime, nor in the underworld. Until man, the son of Manu, the Thinker, by contact with the Lord God of Truth within, has come to understand the cause of his affliction and sufferings, he can neither avoid, nor profit by them. He who seeks to know Truth and the cause of things, must avoid ceremonial and experimental magic as he aspires upward through the world of mind, the realm of memory, and the plane of conscious nature.
Starting upon this path man awakens to a consciousness of confusion within his own mind world. Sprightly and alert his thoughts refuse to concentrate, decline to contemplate, but wildly leap from bough to branch, until exhaustion welcomes sleep. As he presses on the seeker finds the agitation less, his wanton thoughts yield sequence to his will until, the borderland of memory reached, he knows and knows that he knows. The lower mind no longer blinks the lights, but now it grasps the thought like moving pictures cast upon a screen, and then man knows that Truth is what he sees. Tis thus he gains the plane of conscious nature and there perceives the cause of all those things he knows, yet not by the process of objective thinking, as in the outer world. In this realm within one sees himself an “It” in the apricot-colored atmosphere of conscious nature, teeming with other “Its,” all pinhead size, but devoid of body separation. This is a tremendous moment, for this is the presence of the Great Reality to which we aspire. Doubts fade, from the left surges the vibration of infinite love and from the right, a vibration of beauty indescribable. Suddenly he is in the Presence, and an intense and subtle joy surges through him. Henceforth nothing matters, but the attainment of this consciousness. Here he analyzes the vibration of Love, and discovers that it is the Law in all its majesty. He attunes himself to Beauty and, in its constant rhythm, he finds it is the mask of strength and gentleness. ‘Tis here he learns the cause of Law is love and wisdom; the cause of Beauty, strength and gentleness.
All Yoga training has the attainment of this consciousness for its aim and many books have thrown light upon this subject, yet the true secrets come to the pupil only from the lips of his teacher.
Once man has found, and been touched by the Presence, an atomic link always connects him in his everyday life. Within his self-created universe the quality has changed, and Law and Beauty stand as heavenly twins, expressing love and strength.
This is the thought expressed by a great soul, when asked regarding the reward of a true seeker, “To him who will seek, comes the knowledge of Truth and Beauty.”
It is on this plane of conscious nature that the student sees the cause of evil hid within the law, exemplifying love and wisdom. The three main causes of evil in this world are:
(1) Gratification of our animal passions and desires.
(2) The evil of the intermediate worlds (which the average person knows little about).
(3) Lack of devotion to Truth (the perfect attribute of God).
Only when man has gained experience in the underworld and, by aspiring, risen above it, can he find the plane of conscious nature. This may take many incarnations, perhaps not always in the body of a human. To the initiate the meaning or equivalent for reincarnation or rebirth is metempsychosis, or transmigration of souls. It signifies a passing of the conscious entity to higher, or to lower states of being. It is here that we find a clue to the cause of much of the evil of everyday existence. Born a man, one who has led an evil life, worked contrary to the law of his own environment, and given way to his animal nature, may reincarnate in a sub-human form with the animal nature. Thus karma states the debt, and the conscious entity gains experience in the world beneath our feet. An old saying of the East is, “The miser seeks to guard his hoard.” Therefore, when the natives see a cobra entering his hole they try to find his hiding place, in hope to find the miser’s treasure of a former life. The miser’s love carried over, although the treasure did not last. Thus, the underworld consists of the debris cast off from civilization. The underworld is the plane of consciousness where evil souls are reborn, where the law of the beast rules. Thus the human debris, while working out its karma in this submerged world, yet serves to stimulate the beast to higher living purpose. In this world dwells Pan and all his satyrs. They are principles of nature upon the lower, or underworld plane—and herein lies the danger of experimental and ceremonial magic by amateurs. A sincere aspiration for truth both ascends and descends. It rises into a higher and inner sphere of consciousness, and sinks into the depths of the submerged world beneath us. Thus is the magic evoked on the earth plane brought to the attention of the denizens of both spheres. Toward it they turn and if the student be unprepared the horrors of the lower plane so shock the senses that often several lives must pass before he can overcome the shock. The world little realizes the countless number of magicians who practice the darker side of magic. Neither does it realize the number of white magicians who spread their protection about those who seek union with the Lord God of Truth within, and urge them to aspire.
In every large city throughout the world some great soul dwells, whose mission is to stimulate youthful minds to search for Truth. Many people nowadays are becoming sensitive, and apprehend the thought atmosphere of others, be it good or evil. It is through this thought atmosphere that the occult students of the darker side, when extending their range of consciousness, seek to form groups. Thus, they gain power and substance to carry on their work, and easily gain their bread and butter. But no student of white magic will set a price on the things of the spirit.
It is through such extension of consciousness and sensitivity to thought atmosphere that certain undying immortals living in this world today seek to further its evolution.
This natural system of thought transference, among those sufficiently developed to respond to thought vibration, is one of the surprises of Yoga practice. America has a number of holy men living in seclusion, remote from the world, sometimes in etheric bodies, who watch over her destiny, and when an earnest student sincerely seeks truth, he is protected by these Elder Brothers. When the student is duly and truly prepared, and has been found to be worthy and well qualified, he is given his instruction. One student was watched over during seven years of preparation, by one of these Elder Brothers, before the instruction came which set his feet upon the upward path, which will lead him through conscious nature to the plane of heavenly peace—the presence of the Lord God of Truth within.
While the ordinary man’s vision can detect a living intelligence expressing through the flame, only the Yogi has come to realize that the elements of fire, air, water, and earth are inhabited by elemental intelligences of different degrees of development. In Persia the intelligence of fire is fervently and sacredly worshipped as the giver of all life. This intelligence, symbolized by the flame, is revered and there are altars in that land where the sacred flame has burned continuously for thousands of years.
The intelligences of air, water, and earth can likewise be seen. It is with these intelligences that the Yogi communicates, when in his practice he enters nature’s consciousness. In his search for the Presence, the Yogi links himself with nature’s will, which is in the plane of intuition. When this is reached man no longer “thinks,” he “knows.” He has tapped the knower consciousness and, as it works in nature, so will it function through him. Even in his present condition man has flashes of intuition where he knows, without thought. When he receives this guidance he should act upon it at once, for “He who hesitates is lost.” In a higher sense this intuition is a manipulation of nature’s will. The genius of Edison often so manifested that through him nature gave many wonderful gifts to man. But the average man has never learned to recognize an intelligence separate from the human body. Take the element of fire; it is a symbol of our sovereign sun. As an intelligence is found in fire, so from the sun flow those forces which have so much to do with the development of our earth. These forces which affect our earth, are manipulated by a great positive intelligence residing in the sun. There is also a great solar intelligence which manipulates the forces that activate the sun. Those solar beings, who work under the positive or right-hand intelligence of the sun, periodically make their presence known and they regularly appear in certain Zen temples. The representatives of the reigning houses of China and Japan are supposed to be descendants of these beings. The sun is an emblem for each of these countries, as it was also a symbol on the first American flag.
While China regularly worships the solar intelligence it also, at certain seasons of the year, worships the intelligences of fire, air, water, and earth. The Chinese recognized, and we must not forget, that our bodies are made up of these elements.
Through Yoga practice the student develops the higher vision, and man’s body resembles a gaseous figure with variously colored radiations quivering about his nerve centers. Thus, man’s limited physical vision is extended through Yoga by developing centers in his body seemingly atrophied by disuse, until his range of consciousness is greatly extended, and he sees with the knower consciousness.
The student comes to realize that there is a division in nature where the noble minds of the hierarchal devas dwell, and that these devas watch over different parts of the earth. This is a plane of vibration where the brooding of the spirit can be sensed. Beneath is a plane of action where nature acts as the Lords of the Law demand. Wind storms, torrents, and lightning are not whims, they are the instruments by which man is scourged into a recognition of his true place in conscious nature. When man, through selfish greed, destroys forests and vegetation, nature causes rain and floods to manifest, bringing death and destruction to many. When he destroys wheat and other food products, nature responds with wind and drought. Someday science will discover, as the Yogi has done, that nature is teeming with intelligences. This will come about, and is even now coming about, through the development of two types of clairvoyance, which extend the range of perception.
Behind the five senses there exists the higher counterpart, which can be seen by eyes that have come to harmonize themselves with vibrations which exist in the seven planes of consciousness, but the ordinary man can apprehend only the three lower ranges.
At the beginning the student is conscious of his physical body, which he has been accustomed to refer to as “I.” When, in his study, he thinks intensively, he shuts down upon the body’s activities and enters the world of mind. As he aspires and meditates more deeply he becomes conscious of the world of the spirit. After that, if he has one-pointedness of mind, and earnestly seeks the Lord God of Truth within, he slowly, and in this world and life, can enter the kingdom of heaven and there he finds peace and happiness. He has become an atom in a great unit and realizes that “I Am That.” But few people are interested to search for and find the Lord God of Truth within. The concern of most is with pleasure, sex, and their problems of living. They read only what interests them in the newspapers. Since they avoid all mental exertion, they think little, belong to the herd, and follow the dictates of those in power and position. As their physical forces decline some people will, perhaps, begin to question their future and review their experiences in life. Such are preparing to profit by their experiences. Someday science will test and measure people, not by their ability to memorize, but by their ability to learn by experience. It is what one learns from experience that really counts in his progress towards Truth.
It is by experience in this mundane world that man learns that the Kingdom of Heaven is within. So the student in Yoga learns of things which are happening in his own real universe within himself, by experience. When this stage is reached progress is rapid and active, for the student has found a vantage point from which to view things which are happening both within his self-creative universe, and in the objective world about him.
In the objective world man is a prisoner and is seldom able to see what is happening in his environment. When the student consciously enters the universe within, a broad expanse of energy confronts him, and he passes through many different divisions of activity in his quest for Truth.
On this earth, and in the objective plane locomotion is slow, but in the higher mental plane the student can travel with the speed and quickness of thought. He begins to realize that Time and Space are terms which man has created, and in this higher consciousness, time and space do not exist. Everything in the presence of the Truth, of the Reality, is and, from this different viewpoint, the student learns that he is of no race, creed, or epoch, but that his atoms are of all races and periods. Race and creed distinction disappear, for he is composed of all strata of all races through which he has migrated and, by research within, he finds there is no such thing as racial distinction, and thus he becomes a brother to all men—a brother of the White School.