THEOSOPHY, Vol. 22, No. 8, June, 1934
(Pages 337-340; Size: 12K)
[Compiler's Note: All 12 articles have the same name.]
THE FRIENDLY PHILOSOPHER(1)
[Part 8 of a 12-part series]
MANY members of the various theosophical societies will naturally demur to our conclusions and conduct, while sympathizing with our determination to adhere to Theosophy strictly as originally recorded. Others, the "old timers" who play the leading roles in these societies, will oppose us vigorously while themselves claiming to "revere" H.P.B. This cannot be avoided if we are to be true to our declared purposes, for those purposes would necessitate a radical change in attitude on the part of both leaders and followers in the different societies. But all those who are not so deeply committed that they will not or dare not consider philosophy, logic and facts on their merits -- all those who are or who may become to any extent open-minded, will make some investigation, will gain a better outlook to that degree, a better appreciation of the need for Unity on a philosophical basis. These impressions will be recalled when such theosophists themselves are forced by events within their own sphere of interest to a reconsideration. Let us, then, trust to recorded facts, recorded philosophy, and the consistent example set by the true Teachers, H.P.B. and W.Q.J.
It was natural that you should attend the Art Exhibit, but unfortunate that it detracted from the strength of the meeting by taking you away. Where there are so few, the absence of even one is felt by all. It weakens the current by division of interest for the time being; moreover, the tendency to repeat is easily established. This may seem like making a "jealous god" out of Theosophy, but it springs from experience, and is given for what it may be worth to you. It should not be taken as a stricture on any particular thing or person, but in general, as a guiding principle. I know that you are no lukewarm Theosophist, but I am thinking of the example set to younger students. It is so easy, and especially in the earlier stages, to lose enthusiasm for the Work itself through dissipation of energy in diversions harmless in themselves. It is better to take relaxation or to attend to "social" matters at other than meeting times, if our intention really is "to sacrifice to the Permanent the mutable."
A year ago at this time, what has since been done and what is in the air to be done, all seemed a long, long way off. U.L.T. has made quite a stride since it was formed, and already it is standing firmly on its own feet, and begins to make its voice heard in the land. Devotion did it, and has grown stronger through the efforts made; so there is every encouragement. A few have already grasped something of the spirit of this movement; there will be more as time goes on, and some of them will grow into real warriors. If we give our hearts to the Cause, all the rest will follow.
Many hear, but few heed the Message, and of those who heed, few are they who take to heart the warnings of the Teachers. Some think, evidently, that all warnings are a sort of scarecrow to test their courage. They forget or ignore that the real test is not of our courage but of our discrimination. If the philosophy is true and Masters are behind it, then what They say is meant. They have said other things besides warnings, and these also are meant, as fully and as truly as their warnings.
Theosophy is not in conflict with any form of religion, any society, any man, any opinion -- however much these may be in conflict with Theosophy. What Theosophy is engaged in, through those who believe in it, as we do, without any mental reservations whatsoever, is a battle for recognition. Theosophy serves to explain the hidden side, the real and inner meaning of all things, for it is a friend to understanding, an aid to knowledge. By it a man may come to know himself through and through. It is because of misunderstanding of the real Self that we have all these religions, sects, parties, dogmas, with all their vested interests and sustainers. It is the Karma of the race that meets us, so we will not cry out nor dodge it when it confronts us. What we might otherwise think is the worst, is the best thing that could come, if we meet it in the right spirit, clearing up our Karma as we go along, making ourselves better instruments for Them. We are not working because of our self-interest in the results, but for Masters and for Humanity. So, we will take cheerfully whatever comes, "enjoy or suffer whatever the Higher Self may have in store for us by way of experience or discipline." It is for us to go on without doubt or anxiety: both are hindrances which spring from the lower nature, not the Higher. We suffer, and must continue to suffer from the bodily and mental weaknesses of the race. We can cheerfully endure all this when we are working for a better time, better minds and bodies, better understanding for the whole of humanity.
There come times to everyone in his development when work seems useless and irksome. I think that the irksomeness of the work is the cleaning up of Karma and the clearing up of "the sheaths of the Soul." That which galls, that which hurts, is our personal desires unattained or feared to be unattainable. We can go through all, bear all, in thinking of the Self of all. It is by giving up self to Self that the White Adept has become what He is. We "know" all this very well, but it is the realization of it that we lack; hence we find the pressure hard many times. We have to keep on, and dwell as much as possible in the Self and on the Self; every effort brings the time of realization nearer.
It is by dwelling on our inherent perfectibility that we get rid of our imperfections. The last thing to doubt is the inherent perfectibility of all men. Here is an interesting statement by H.P.B.:"Every Ego has the Karma of past Manvantaras behind him. The Ego starts with Divine Consciousness -- no past, no future, no separation. It is long before realizing that it is itself. Only after many births does it begin to discern, by this collectivity of experience, that it is individual. At the end of its cycle of reincarnation it is still the same Divine Consciousness, but it has now become individualized Self-Consciousness."Without this sense of inherent perfection, there would be nothing worth living for: a few years of "pleasure and pain," and then it is all gone -- and what has been gained? Do what we will, we cannot escape Life, for we are Life -- all the time; most of us realize but a portion of its possibilities. Sometime we will learn what Life really means. We are working to that end, for others as well as ourselves -- mostly now for those others "who know still less than we," but we also are learning all the time. Is it not worth all that it costs? Men make greater sacrifices than we are called upon to make, and for infinitely less -- a few years of questionable happiness, and then oblivion as far as they know or can see. That we can see even a little of the purpose of life, is much; to feel it, is greater still; to realize it, is to Live. If Nietzsche's doctrine is right, then we have made a great mistake. Well, have we? There is no "if" about it; we have every certainty that we are doing right in following the Path of Masters, the lines laid by H.P.B. So what matters it if we suffer wounds in battling for Them and for all mankind. We have accomplished something, however small. We have done all that we could do and the fight is still on. It is a School of Life, and everything that comes to us contains a lesson for us. We should not forget that -- ever. What comes to us at any time contains in it the thing we need, whether it seems hard, troublesome or pleasant.
The Work makes up for the sacrifice. "Nothing is gained without sacrifice." Let us take to heart Judge's words: "And yet, at every moment, every hour of each day, these Masters are willing and anxious to meet those who are clear-eyed enough to see their own true destiny, and noble-hearted so as to work for 'the great orphan, Humanity'."--ROBERT CROSBIE.
COMPILER'S NOTE: The following is a separate item which followed the above article but was on the same page. I felt it was useful to include it here:
THE TRUE MODULUS
The multiplication of local centres should be a foremost consideration in your minds, and each man should strive to be a centre of work in himself. When his inner development has reached a certain point, he will naturally draw those with whom he is in contact under the same influence; a nucleus will be formed, round which other people will gather, forming a centre from which information and spiritual influence radiate, and towards which higher influences are directed. But let no man set up a popery instead of Theosophy, as this would be suicidal and has ever ended most fatally. We are all fellow-students, more or less advanced; but no one belonging to the Theosophical Society ought to count himself as more than, at best, a pupil-teacher -- one who has no right to dogmatize ... On the day when Theosophy will have accomplished its most holy and most important mission -- namely to unite firmly a body of men of all nations in brotherly love and bent on a pure altruistic work, not on a labor with selfish motives -- on that day only will Theosophy become higher than any nominal brotherhood of man.--H.P.B.
THE FRIENDLY PHILOSOPHER
[Part 9 of a 12-part series]
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GROUPING OF HUNDREDS OF "COLLATED ARTICLES"
Back to the full listing containing all of the
"Additional Categories of Articles".
ONE (1) FOOTNOTE LISTED BELOW:
(1) [Note: The Index that I selected this series from said that the 12 articles were "Collated from Robert Crosbie". Researching this, I found the collation to be made up of 12 of his many letters. On another note, "U.L.T." refers to "The United Lodge of Theosophists".--Compiler.]
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