THEOSOPHY, Vol. 53, No. 3, January, 1965
(Pages 76-77; Size: 9K)

THE PERSONAL GOD IDEA

THE present cycle in human evolution, embracing a relatively short period of time, is the only one, according to Theosophy, in which the personal-God idea exists; for it is the only cycle in which men are so personally centered -- focusing upon the persona, or mask. In the majority, the feeling of Self, or of "I," which should have its roots in the Soul, or collective Humanity, has been shifted to the body and lower mind, producing ineach man a false conception of separateness, the notion that men are their warring personalities. From this false idea have arisen numberless delusions to which present-day mankind is heir -- chief among these being the belief that God, like man, is a person, separate and beyond man and all life. But the early races of mankind entertained no such delusions. Their universal view is also truly contemporary, and may be expressed in this way:

The whole Kosmos is guided, controlled and animated by almost endless series of Hierarchies of sentient Beings ... They vary infinitely in their respective degrees of consciousness and intelligence ... and differ morally from the terrestrial human beings on their higher (less material) spheres, only in that they are devoid of the feeling of personality and of the human emotional nature -- two purely earthly characteristics.... the term [personality] cannot of course be applied to non-human entities; but, as a fact insisted upon by generations of Seers, none of these Beings, high or low, have either individuality or personality as separate Entities, i.e., they have no individuality in the sense in which a man says, "I am myself and no one else"; in other words, they are conscious of no such distinct separateness as men and things have on earth. Individuality is the characteristic of their respective hierarchies, not of their units;..." (The Secret Doctrine I, 274-5.)
The Adept, or Mahatma, is a being who has overcome the chief delusion of separateness in personality. When the Christ or Buddha thinks "I," he thinks, not of the personality or mask he is temporarily using on earth, but of Divine Humanity, of which he feels himself to be an inseparable part. What else could Jesus have meant when he said, "I and my Father are one"? What could the Master have had in mind when he said, "Inasmuch as ye did it not to one of the least of these, ye did it not to me," except that he had succeeded in merging his consciousness with the Hierarchy to which he belongs, and felt himself to be Humanity? In The Secret Doctrine I, 276, it is stated that--
"... by paralyzing his lower personality, and arriving thereby at the full knowledge of the non-separateness of his higher SELF from the One absolute SELF, man can, even during his terrestrial life, become as "One of Us." Thus it is, by eating of the fruit of knowledge which dispels ignorance, that man becomes like one of the Elohim or the Dhyanis(1); and once on their plane the Spirit of Solidarity and perfect Harmony, which reigns in every Hierarchy, must extend over him and protect him in every particular.
The time must come, states The Secret Doctrine, when the men of our race(2) will have outgrown the feeling of personality, rendered all the wiser and happier for the transformation. Then, like the free spirits, visible and invisible, inhabiting the three regions of the Universe -- the elementals(3), animals, angels and gods -- who know no separateness and have no psychological complexes, so of man. Freed from the delusion of personality and the personal-God idea, man will need no churches, dogmas, or rituals; for every thought and act will be a spontaneous and natural worship of the one true God in all. Walt Whitman seems to have felt this universal kinship when he wrote:
I think I could turn and live with animals,
        they are so placid and self-contained,
I stand and look at them long and long.

They do not sweat and whine about
        their condition,
They do not lie awake in the dark and weep
        for their sins,
They do not make me sick discussing their
        duty to God,
Not one is dissatisfied, not one is demented
        with the mania of owning things,
Not one kneels to another, nor to his kind
        that lived thousands of years ago,
Not one is respectable or unhappy over the
        whole earth. 


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THREE (3) FOOTNOTES LISTED BELOW:

COMPILER'S NOTE: I added these footnotes; they were not in the article. If any of them don't paint an accurate enough picture, or are incorrect, I hope the Editors of THEOSOPHY magazine will spot them and point the inaccuracies out to me, so that I can make the necessary corrections.

(1) "Dhyanis" are those "Dhyan Chohans" (or Mahatmas, Great Souls, Great Adepts, Dragons of Wisdom, Gods, Angels, Heavenly Men, etc., etc.) who have become what they are through self-induced and self-devised efforts, just as we all can, during prior Manvantaras (very long cyclic periods of humanity's and of the Earth's evolution). They are in perfect harmony with their Higher Nature and the Divine Forces and Laws of the universe, and they know how to use and guide these Forces. They are the Teachers of humanity as well as of those of us who are developing into Adepts, and into their ranks, during this present Manvantara. They are one of the prototypes of the Roman Catholic "Seven Spirits" or Angels with Michael as chief, or the "Celestial Host"; the "Seven Angels of the Presence". They are the Builders, Cosmocratores, of the Gnostics and identical with the Seven Prajapatis, the Sephiroth, etc. They are "The Lords of Light". The highest gods, answering to the Roman Catholic Archangels. The divine Intelligences charged with the supervision of Kosmos.
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(2) "Race" means the whole Human Race here.
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(3) "Elementals" -- Elemental "lives" make up the "Substance" or the atomic and sub-atomic kingdoms of every plane in the cosmos, visible and invisible, which substances are really all forms, no matter how subtle or how gross. This means that the Elemental lives make up all of the Forces of Nature. They make up the Electro-Magnetic (or Astral) spectrum at every level, including the highest levels which we call the Spiritual. They make up all of the forms in the mineral, vegetable, animal, and human kingdoms. They make up the air, earth, fire and water. Elementals are instantly impressed by human thought, words and deeds and run up into forms accordingly. All this might make clear the statement in the Teaching that "The universe is embodied consciousness". Every Elemental "life" is also known as an eternal evolving "Monad", from the lowest possible level to the highest Perceiving and Thinking. There are an almost infinite gradation of Hierarchies of Elementals (or Monads) naturally grouped together. We, humanity, are naturally responsible for the "impress" that we give to these "lives" -- we either advance or retard their journey, through infinite varieties of experiences in forms, on their way through these hierarchies, to Self-consciousness. And all along the way they magnetically feed back to us, by natural impulse or instinct, what we programmed them with -- for example, the wild and furious and destructive "Forces" we call violent weather, and the types of "Thoughts", "Dreams", and "Visions" that come to us.
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