When our Soul (mind) evokes a thought, the representative sign of that thought is self-engraved upon the astral fluid, which is the receptacle and, so to say, the mirror of all the manifestations of being.
 The sign expresses the thing: the thing is the (hidden or occult) virtue of the sign.
 To pronounce a word is to evoke a thought, and make it present: the magnetic potency of the human speech is the commencement of every manifestation in the Occult World. To utter a Name is not only to define a Being (an Entity), but to place it under and condemn it through the emission of the Word (Verbum), to the influence of one or more Occult potencies. Things are, for every one of us, that which it (the Word) makes them while naming them. The Word (Verbum) or the speech of every man is, quite unconsciously to himself, a
BLESSING or a CURSE; this is why our present ignorance about the properties or attributes of the IDEA as well as about the attributes and properties of MATTER, is often fatal to us.
 Yes, names (and words) are either
BENEFICENT or MALEFICENT; they are, in a certain sense, either venomous or health-giving, according to the hidden influences attached by Supreme Wisdom to their elements, that is to say, to the LETTERS which compose them, and the NUMBERS correlative to these letters.

The Secret Doctrine, i 93-94

 Those who have had the resplendent karma of receiving this sacred teaching should move rapidly from the state of irresponsibility into the realm of responsibility in the gestation of sound associated with thought. This is a practical teaching that can be used even if one has yet to acquire a detailed knowledge of the hidden properties of matter on subtle planes of existence. Anyone may make a true beginning by trying to conserve speech-energy, by becoming more deliberate and careful in the choice of thoughts and words. Calmly sitting down in the privacy of one's own solitude to read aloud The Voice of the Silence, or excerpts from The Secret Doctrine, one can make a radical change in one's magnetic field. Infusing this endeavour with a profound sense of the sacred, a vital depth is touched in one's daily awareness of the invisible centres of consciousness and in one's capacity to direct benevolently different groupings of life-atoms, to purify and render them worthy of the divine temple of the human form in which there burns the flame of self-consciousness kindled by the Sons of Fire. The priceless gift of noetic self-awareness can be brought to bear upon each of the different centres of consciousness. Even though in its spiritual essence Manas is entirely disconnected from the discordant sensorium, it effectively can, through the pristine radiation of its own potent light, magnetize, consecrate and intensify as well as make precise and benevolent the organs of perception. Those who value this immense privilege seriously enough to carry out a series of initial experiments with truth within themselves will gain a greater awareness through deliberation of the dignity and the divinity of being human. They will discover what it means to reverse the current of negative thought, centered upon the sense of futility of the personal self, and they will lighten the load of dead-weight elementals impressed with past pretences, desperation and despair.

 The orbit of the sacred is revolutionary; it is subversive to the status quo of one's previous somnambulic existence. Lest one cultivate the fatal craft of becoming schizoid, one must assiduously practise the arcane teaching of the Verbum by consciously choosing and assuming full responsibility for one's thought-currents. Instead of excusing one's passive tendencies, one must learn to direct one's attention to what one deliberately intends, to sublime themes that elevate the mind, to daily exercises in spiritual alchemy. Individuals must think to the core the quintessential prerogative of being human. Rather than irresponsibly pretending that the whole of life is episodic, they must acknowledge that days make up weeks, weeks make up months, months make up years, years make up decades in a lifetime, and each incarnation is an integral part of a long series of lives. In a universe where sowing and reaping are inextricably interwoven, human beings have to do what agriculturists know and gardeners practise, preparing the soil, pulling out weeds, planting at the right time and patiently cooperating with the seasons and cycles of nature. If some are afraid to do this, it is because they mistakenly believe that they are infallible experts on the subject of themselves. This is a fundamental error. When a person gains glimpses of self-knowledge, a sure sign of growth is the increased willingness to breathe the refreshing air of agnosticism. One is ready to recognize that there is a profound mystery to every human being, that the last person one knows is oneself. Not until the bonds of personality are loosened can that self be truly known. The soul abides in the Silence, and when the restless mind ceases from thoughts and words, it may be merged into the inmost shrine of the heart, so that when one opens the eyes and utters a sound, one feels it is a sacred privilege to breathe as the votary of the Logos, of Brahma Vach.

 If a person ventured to make daily experiments with truth, it would be helpful to formulate some working rules which make due allowance for the plastic potency of one's own vestures. After all, different people have different propensities. Some are very vocal on worldly matters but they are utterly unable to speak about the spiritual. Others speak endlessly about the spiritual until words lose all meaning. Still others speak as if they already know what they have only remotely glimpsed. Others mix vibrations, speaking of the sacred and then lapsing into the profane. Sacred language cannot be properly enunciated if one inserts into it a sense of the separative "I" because the kamamanasic "I" has to vacate its false authority within the human being so that the immortal individuality may affirm spiritual truths through an invulnerable personality. The metaphysical basis of this process lies in the fact that the more indivisible the mental energy involved in universal, abstract, impersonal ideas, the more rarefied and homogeneous is the matter within which these ideas clothe themselves. As divine ideation draws the mind to a still centre, through deep meditation upon boundless duration, abstract space and pure being, one approaches a plane of consciousness where matter is radically different from what is normally understood. Matter becomes light-energy. It is cool Akashic fire which has a distinctive texture, a peculiar tensility and volatility, ethereal properties for which there are no adequate analogues on the physical plane.

 A person sitting for long hours by a log fire may start to see behind and around the flames a noumenal light and may begin to have an inkling of the invisible fire behind the veil of the visible. It is possible for any person to arouse the subtler senses by reaching towards universal ideas, and through intense ideation one may become conscious of noumenal matter. This arcane teaching rests upon the presupposition that what is called knowing or interacting is an imperfect experience of consubstantiality. One only knows what is on the grosser planes through the grossness in oneself. Any suggestion that it is outside is misleading, for if it were not in oneself it could not be seen. A highly evolved being may be able to take the most mundane of subjects and see it from the standpoint of the subtlest abstraction, thus elevating the entire field. On the other hand, most human beings only too often do the opposite. They may even take a sublime conception and drag it down to the densest plane of sensory awareness.

 Control of thought and speech is an essential ingredient of soul etiquette and spiritual discrimination. It represents good taste at the highest level, where one may enrich a spontaneous longing for Brahma Vach, the Agathon, the Ineffable Good. Out of repeated meditation one must gain such a strong, lively and self-perpetuating sense of the Ineffable Good at the core of the Divine Darkness behind the shimmering veils of the universe, that one is securely anchored in that state of spiritual awareness. And therefore, as Plato suggested in the Allegory of the Cave, when seemingly descending into the world of heterogeneity, one is able to use wisely one's eyes and ears and above all, one's tongue, so that one is acutely conscious of every available opportunity to give a forward impulse to human evolution. Where one encounters anything meretricious on the lower planes, it will roll off like water off a duck's back. It simply will not inhere because of the intense activation and vigilant preservation of one's noetic awareness. The importance of this mental discipline will soon become evident to those who are courageous enough to become steadfast in its practice, not for their protection, but for the sake of universal enlightenment. Not only can they begin to discharge their debt to the sacred Teaching by converting it into what they could use, but they could actively contribute to the generation of the magnetic field in which spiritual instruction could be integrated into new modes of secular monasticism.

 It is the responsibility of those who have received the Teaching to test themselves by experiments and exercises, by resolutions and by vows, for the sake of other human beings who have not been so privileged, and therefore cannot understand how they are constantly harming themselves by the sounds emitted through their tongues and vocal chords. They have created recurrent karma even through a single violent outburst. Given the mathematics of the process, it takes a long time to create a strong field of refined vibrations. Destruction takes very little time, and through violence masses of life-atoms have stamped on them some memory of revenge. As W.Q. Judge explains in The Persian Student's Doctrine", at some point they will return and take their toll for the abuse given to them. Many people are self-alienated because they have misused too many life-atoms for too long and therefore fear that something like nemesis is coming to them. This supposedly malign fate is nothing other than what they themselves have summoned, but unless they grasp the logic of karma and reincarnation, there is little they can do to mitigate their own misery.

 If one has been so fortunate as to encounter these teachings, then instead of vainly brooding over what one might have done ten lives ago, one should right now release the strongest vibration of which one is capable. One will be doing so in a magnetic field in which there are unknown but tougher beings than oneself who are also doing it in their own consciousness. One will have the benefit of that collective current as well as the inestimable benediction of Initiates. If one attempts this earnestly, one will begin to feel worthy of inhabiting the human form, with its far-ranging faculties of perception and action, which myriads of ancestors and their spiritual instructors have produced and perfected over aeons. The golden opportunity is open to all to correct the persisting mistakes of the past and to insert the strongest current into the immediate future, and that means one has to get to the root-cause which is the immovable mind. Just as one can sense the depths of the ocean or the idea of bare space, one can make the mind immovable and inconceivably strong. One may associate it with an inward posture and meditate upon its potential fixity, analogous to the snowy pillars of Amarnath. As Robert Crosbie suggests, one should meditate upon the idea of steadiness itself. One might think of familiar examples of what is fixed, from the pole-star to the unthanked lamp that lights a city street for stragglers in the night. Above all, if one would learn steadfastness in maintaining the highest spiritual vibration, one must meditate upon the Bodhisattvas and Mahatmas, and Shiva, the patron and paradigm of true ascetics.

 The initiation of any sacred sound-vibration, when based upon exact spiritual knowledge, will set the keynote of an entire epoch. In that Avataric tradition, when Krishna struck a keynote, as with Buddha, Shankara and Pythagoras, the highest karma of a cycle was determined. This has a bearing upon the classes of souls drawn into incarnation as well as the pressures that vacate souls unable to keep pace with the current, and also upon all the invisible forces and energies that have been rearranged and affected. At all times there are people who may be contemporaneous with the sounding of such a keynote, but apart from a vague sense that something is going on, they may not be able to participate in it because, as the Buddha said in the Dhammapada, the ladle of a soup bowl, even though it serves the most delicious soup over the lifetime of that bowl, will never become the taste of the soup. Mere physical proximity makes no difference to consciousness. Spiritual teachers think and speak in terms of millennia and of millions of beings, and in many a Buddhist text it is said that the Buddha taught all three worlds. In these worlds there are those who, by self-conscious awareness of what is seminal, can receive the reverberation of the keynote and become capable of benefiting by its translation into uses that may be exemplary and helpful to other beings. There would be no survival for the human race over eighteen million years but for the continuous compassion of the Brotherhood of Bodhisattvas.

 The karma of the earth is much better than the karma of most of the beings who inhabit it, and it is the sacred reservoir of the sacrificial ideation of holy beings that sustains humanity. These are the invisible potencies and guardians that protect the human race and provide the forward impulse behind human evolution. Even though whole groups of entities, by receiving the accumulated karma of their own perverse acts, may vacate the scene of history, Humanity moves onward. This is because the power of spiritual continuity is much stronger in the universe than the discordant discontinuities of fragmented consciousness. All discontinuities must very quickly produce disconnections, and when there are disconnections between the centres, this is rather like a wireless set that does not work anymore or a car that has broken down. But in regard to the astral, breakdown is not a matter which can be mechanically adjusted. It is a function of tropism, whole classes of life-atoms and elementals which develop destructive tendencies that become cumulative and cataclysmic. The practical implication lies in the inexorable fact that whatever karma any human being generates between the age of twenty-one and thirty-five must be properly adjusted between the age of thirty-five and forty-nine. These twenty-eight critical years out of a human being's average of seventy are more intense than the period before twenty-one, despite the extenuating theories of those who want to blame heredity or environment or childhood. The middle period is crucial because the power of thought is activated in a manner that has a vital bearing upon the twenty-one years that complete the average span. There is a cyclical rhythm in every human life which is related to the mystery of numbers and the mathematics of collective cycles. To be able to work with these laws and cycles is what has always been valued as wisdom throughout the history of the human race. Wisdom always works with the processes of life and its continuities through generations that are understood by all peoples. Anything that is not based upon this organic pattern is unnatural and a sign of ignorance, of cutting oneself off from what it is to be human, from the whole of life, from the laws of nature and from the historical currents that move towards righteousness, enlightenment and growth.

 These forward currents have their ultimate origin in the manifesting power of the Verbum, which through its cyclic descent establishes the manvantaric world – "the one "Whirlwind" (or motion) finally giving the impulse to the form, and the initial motion, regulated and sustained by the never-resting Breaths – the Dhyan Chohans". These are, in turn, the ancestors and archetypes of the Buddhas of Ceaseless Contemplation, who exemplify to mankind dhyana paramita. They seem distant to human beings, and seem to represent an impossible ideal of fixity and continuity only because human beings have mistakenly identified themselves with those elements in themselves that are discontinuous. On this basis, immortality itself becomes impossible to understand because that composite mind which is discontinuous is meant to disintegrate. It is ceaselessly involved in the flux, it is essentially unreal, it is rather like the interplay of light and shadow upon a screen wherein is reflected at a great distance an image projected from a magic lantern. The immortal individuality of every human being inhabits a luminous sphere or noumenal field which is saturated with the highest creative reverberations. Through sushupti and meditation each person may come closer to the great galaxy of perfected minds and hearts which are engaged in ceaseless contemplation, and also to the Dhyan Chohans who preside over the whole of manifestation.

 The Dhyanis are at the apex of complex hierarchies which are difficult to understand because the entire teaching about spiritual hierarchies is numerological, mystical and shrouded in a secret cipher. These exalted intelligences are intimately involved, as daimons, with every single human being. This is closely related to what happens at the moment of death, when every person comes into contact with a being of light. That is the true Father-spirit, the Dhyani overbrooding each human being. Even if a person, for lack of contemplation and meditation or due to misidentification with the body and the persona (namarupa), never really thought of the overbrooding Dhyani, at the moment of death the presence of the Dhyani is essential to enable a smooth separation of the higher Triad from the lower quaternary. The spiritually wise have taught in all times and cultures that the individual who consciously chooses during waking life to think of that which happens involuntarily to the mind in sleep, and of that which comes as a gift at the moment of death, is able to maintain a ceaseless current of benevolent ideation. Only such a person is truly able to live, which is why The Voice of the Silence enjoins: "Give up thy life, if thou would'st live." Without dying unto the world, without dying as a separative self, without relinquishing the petty personal concerns which are mostly muddled and confused through a fundamental ignorance of causality, conscious immortality is impossible. The blustering tyrant, kama manas, must cast off all pretensions and invoke the immortal sovereign spirit to descend and enter the temple, don the vestures and assume its sovereignty over its kingdom so that the soul's true mission may be fulfilled. This is what is meant by inviting Krishna to become the charioteer, transforming Kurukshetra into Dharmakshetra, the field of triumphant righteousness.

 Shankara transmitted the wisdom of Initiates and taught that "Fire is beyond time – that is the highest guru." There is a Father-fire in the Spiritual Sun which is formless and invisible and which is triune, but which on the reflected plane is a sevenfold fire that participates in the manifested world. If the typical human being is sevenfold as a differentiated being, though strictly unitary, that person can become an integrated being, intact within and living from within without. By meditating in the lower vestures upon the higher Triad, one can get closer and closer to the cosmic Triad until there is a permanent reversal of polarity. Then there is a continual awareness of the ubiquitous reality of the primordial Triad of Agni, Vayu and Surya, of Fire, Breath and the Spiritual Sun. When these are seen as one, and when this becomes the subject as well as object of meditation, it is possible to make a revolutionary difference in the internal relations between life-atoms in one's subtlest vestures. Then one is able to control at will the lower principles while seemingly participating in the world of differentiated forms which is mayavic and unreal. The secret life of the soul is constant, continuous and replete with the pure joy of effortless attunement to the whole, to the music of the spheres, to the rhythms of invisible Nature. This is the blessed privilege accessible to every human being, to become capable of entering into the pristine current of the Dhyani, to become self-consciously aware upon every plane of the inaudible hum in the heart, the ceaseless vibration that comes from the Soundless Sound.

 The sacred teachings concerning the Spiritual Sun, the Verbum and the Dhyanis cannot be understood unless they are used daily, and this is inconceivable unless one is inherently capable of apprehending and experiencing them. There is a self-validating nature to Divine Wisdom. When one finds a seminal idea, a mantramic phrase which truly sparks off some light in the head and in the heart, and one feels impelled to use it, then by reflecting upon it and by remaining in that current and using it one can transform the magnetic field of awareness, which in turn can draw the mind further onward. Those who engage in regular meditation upon OM TAT SAT will find that their attention is again and again taken back to Hiranyagarbha, the golden egg, and to that which is beyond it and is represented by the Spiritual Sun. If one is always reaching out to the Source, then one can take the teachings concerning entire classes of seminal energies and gain some sense of how these work, usually when one is very still, in a state of deep silence, and when one has brought to a point one's whole consciousness and then expanded it while staying within that current. If one really touched the core and experienced joy, one would naturally want to return to it again and again. It is really important to touch that realm which is so overwhelmingly joyous and profoundly illuminating that one's whole being wants to go in that direction as often as possible. This can produce a line of life's meditation. When that truly happens, the sadhaka or seeker begins to live in the current of Divine Wisdom and then many discoveries are possible, so that when one hears about the Kumaras, our spiritual progenitors, one can resonate in the different centres of one's being.

 A simple but crucial exercise is not to go to bed and not to wake up without deliberately giving oneself a chance to dissociate, saying, "I am not the body, I am not the astral form, I am not my likes and dislikes, I am not this name." As one comes closer to the recognition that one is THAT which is beginningless and endless, not just in words but in thought, one will begin to centre oneself in the spiritual heart of one's being. Most of what is called living is off-centre, and therefore one is alienated from the inmost depths of one's being. If one practised a regular exercise before going into sleep and on waking, and then tried to link these two points through a third point during the day, one would establish a triad through which the mind is firmly brought back to the same central theme of true selfhood. By making connections between points in consciousness, one begins to initiate a current in which one can stay continuously. Then it becomes natural to familiarize oneself with the different classes of obstructions and obstacles that deflect one from the current. One naturally welcomes every opportunity through reading and thinking and through listening, where one can be brought back to the main current which then becomes the living power of Divine Wisdom. In the course of time there is a progressive incarnation of the higher principles and therefore a natural evacuation of those classes of tendencies which cannot really occupy the same space in which the diviner energies are operating. To realize the beneficent and purifying power of the Verbum on a sustained and regular basis is the great purpose of all invocations of Brahma Vach, so that as many as possible may enter the current of divine ideation which is the guiding force of cosmic and human evolution.

Hermes, June 1980
by Raghavan Iyer