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Paul's book, seven keys

Dec 21, 1993 01:44 AM
by Jerry Hejka-Ekins

Paul Johnson

     I think your prospective book is needed.  You might look at
the material on Soobah Chetty that Michael Gomes recently
published.  Your book would have the greatest value as a
reference resource if you make it as a compilation.  But as I
read between the lines in your second communication, it is
obvious that this is not your intention.

     Regarding Leadbeater, Besant, Judge, and Krishnamurti, you
might keep in mind that the questions concerning the authenticity
of their contacts with the Masters is basically politically
motivated.  Personally, I see no reason to question that
Leadbeater's three 1884 letters from the Masters are genuine.
Nor do I see any reason to dispute the authenticity of the 1900
letter to Besant.  In fact, the recently revealed passages that
were censored by Jinarajadasa, very accurately warned her against
the very things that Blavatsky students have been for years
criticizing her for.

Brenda Tucker

     May I applaud your argument that H.P.B. never intended her
writings to be taken on blind faith.  As you have aptly shown,
she warns against this all through the SD.  The same warnings are
also found in ISIS UNVEILED, THE KEY TO THEOSOPHY, and scattered
all through her articles.

     I'm also glad you brought up Adam Warcup's CYCLIC EVOLUTION.
This is by far the best work I have ever seen on the subject, and
the only that I can think of that I believe to be correct in all
of its details.  It is a work that receives far less attention
than it deserves.

     Thank you for finding the quote for the "metrological key."
I had forgotten about her use of that word, but as Eldon and I
mentioned in the past, H.P.B. had more than one term for some of
the keys.  When I gave the list, I wasn't able to find my last
copy of the SD (I keep wearing them out), where I had a more
complete set of notes on the seven keys.  And as I said in my
Dec. 17th, communication, I was (and still am) in the middle of a
paper, and had no time to dig it up.

     "Metrology" is of course the science of weights and
measures.  In her phrase, the "metrological key of the symbolism
of the Hebrews" she is of course talking about the Geometric Key,
under its numerical aspect.  However, if you want to argue that
"Metrological" is a better term than "Geometric,"  then I would
consider this a matter of taste.

     I'm afraid that my intentions concerning my citations were
(understandably) misinterpreted.  My short explanations of the
keys were from the top of my head. I wrote them hours after I
should have been in bed.  They were intended to give a rough idea
of each key, and not a definitive explanation.  My explanations
had nothing to do with the page numbers I cited.  The page
numbers were just references where interested readers could look
up mentions of the keys for themselves (And this is a lesson for
me for staying up too late, as a couple of the citations were the
correct page, but wrong volume number).  Therefore, my notations
under the keys were not intended to be interpretations of those
pages I cited.  I did not bother to transcribe the pages I cited
for two reasons:

1. I didn't feel that the quotes would add anything to the

2. Anyone sufficiently interested in this discussion could look
the citations up for themselves.

     However, since you feel that it will help matters, here are
some citations, along with an amended list of alternative terms
she used for the seven keys in parentheses) .  Anything that is
not a direct transcription is in square brackets, and are
intended to put the quote in context, not to distort the meaning.
Volume and page citations are in parentheses:

0. General Mention of Keys

     As for the Hebrews, in all their writings they show no more
     than a thorough knowledge of the astronomical, geometrical
     and numerical systems of symbolizing all the human, and
     especially the physiological functions. They never had the
     higher keys (I 311).

     For the comprehension of the Occult Doctrine is based on
     that of the seven sciences; which sciences find their
     expression in the seven different applications of the secret
     records to the exoteric texts.  Thus we have to deal with
     seven modes of thought on seven entirely different planes of
     reality.  Every text relates to, and has to be rendered
     from, one of the following standpoints (II 335).

1. Theogonic (mystical):

     This interpretation of the "ark" symbolism does not in the
     least interfere with its astronomical, or even theogonic
     keys; nor with any of the other six meanings.  Nor does it
     seem less scientific that the modern theories about the
     origin of man  (II 291).

     [Referring to the Theogonic key applied to Genesis]: "This
     key explains that Noah, the deluge-Patriarch, is in one
     aspect the permutation of the Deity (the Universal Creative
     Law), for the purpose of the formation of our Earth, its
     population, and the propagation of life on it, in general"
     (II 595).

2. Anthropological (Human, anthroposophical):

     [Footnote referring to an interpretation of the ark
     symbolism in the allegory of the Vaivasvata Manu.  She says
     in the body of the text that: "the `Ark' (or again the
     vehicle) simply means man." ]  This is the meaning when the
     allegory and symbol are opened and read by means of the
     human key or the key to terrestrial anthroposophy. (II 291)

     [Commentary referring to a sloka in Stanza V.] Remember in
     this connection the ~Tabula smaradina~ of Hermes, the
     esoteric meaning of which has seven keys to it.  The Astro-
     Chemical is well known to students, the anthropological may
     be given now. The "one thing" mentioned in it is MAN.  It is
     said: "The Father of THAT ONE ONLY THING is the Sun; its
     Mother the Moon; the Wind carries it in its bosom, and its
     nurse is the Spirituous Earth."  In the occult rendering of
     the same its is added: "and spiritual Fire is its instructor
     (Guru)." (II 109)

3. Astro-Chemical

     [Commentary referring to a sloka in Stanza V.] Remember in
     this connection the ~Tabula smaradina~ of Hermes, the
     esoteric meaning of which has seven keys to it.  The Astro-
     Chemical is well known to students, the anthropological may
     be given now (II 109)

4. Numerical

     [Regarding a "cosmo-metaphysical interpretation of God
     revealing his back to Moses]  This is correct, and is the
     cosmo-metaphysical explanation.  And now speaks the other
     Kabalist, giving the numerical meaning (II: 539).

     It had been declared from the first and has been repeatedly
     asserted since that (1st) no Theosophist, not even as an
     accepted chela~let alone lay students~could expect to have
     the secret teachings explained to him thoroughly and
     completely, before he had irretrievably pledged himself to
     the Brotherhood and passed through at least one initiation,
     because no figures and numbers could be given to the public,
     for figures and numbers are the key to the esoteric system.
     (2.) That what was revealed was merely the esoteric lining
     of that which is contained in almost all the exoteric
     Scriptures of the world- religions~pre-eminently in the
     Brahm~nas, and the Upanishads of the Vedas and even in the
     Pur~nas. It was a small portion of what is divulged far more
     fully now in the present volumes;  and even this is very
     incomplete and fragmentary  (I 164).

5. Geometric (Metrological, Geometry)

     With them [Talmudic Jews], as now shown by the discovery of
     the key to the correct Bible reading--Geometry, the fifth
     divine science ("Fifth"--because it is the fifth key in the
     series of the Seven Keys to the Universal esoteric language
     and symbology) was desecrated, and by them applied to
     conceal the most terrestrial and grossly sexual mysteries,
     wherein both deity and religion were degraded (II 471).

     To the metrological key to the symbolism of the Hebrews
     which reveals numerically and geometrical relations to the
     Circle (All Deity) to the Square, Cube, Triangle, and all
     the integral emanations of the divine area, may be added the
     theogonic key (II 595)

6. Astronomical (Cosmo-Metaphysical)

     It is true that the nature of Michael depends upon that of
     his Creator and Master.  Who the latter is, one may find out
     by carefully studying the allegory of the "War in Heaven"
     with the Astronomical key (II 63).

     [Quoting from THE QABBALAH, by Issac Myer] "That is, I will
     show you `my back,' i.e., my visible universe, my lower
     manifestations, but, as a man still in the flesh, thou canst
     not see my invisible nature.  So proceeds the Qabbalah."
     This is correct, and is the cosmo-metaphysical explanation
     (II 539).

7. Physical (Matter) has only one key~the key of matter~to open the
     mysteries of nature withal, while occult philosophy has
     seven keys and explains that which science fails to see  (I
     155 fn).

     As I wrote before, there are more citations then I have
given here, but I don't have time to find them.  But we really
are getting away from the main point, which is that H.P.B. never
names a "psychological key," but as you pointed out, she does
mention a "psychological aspect" of interpretation.  What would a
psychological key be like anyway?  H.P.B.'s statements liking the
keys to language, is very evident (to me anyway).  Psychology in
the 1880's was associated with hypnotism, and was unknown in
ancient times, except as a form of magic.  But this aspect is
well covered in ISIS UNVEILED, which she calls the "physcial
key."  Brewer was the big name in the 1880's, with Freud studying
under him.  The "Id, Ego and Super-ego" of Freud's famous theory
had not yet been devised.  In fact Freud was yet to publish his
earlier version of "conscious, pre-conscious and unconscious."
This latter typology didn't come out until 1900 with the
publication of THE INTERPRETATION OF DREAMS.  H.P.B. may have had
a deeper understanding of psychology than the people of her time,
but she never spoke of it outside of the understanding of her
time.  Psychology today is a discipline (or science, if you would
rather) for the study of human behavior.  It is not a symbolic
language in the sense of the above keys, to which are attached
symbols, allegories and motifs.  I think the problem is that
psychology has become so much a part of our lives since the
1920's that it is very easy to think of it as a key: especially
since Freud drew so heavily from mythology for his theories.  For
instance the Oedipal Complex, named after Oedipus the King.  But
I cannot imagine how the language of a "psychological key" would
be constructed.  Would we take the various myths and interpret
them in terms of human drives and desires?   Jung, of course also
drew heavily from mythology and made psychological
interpretations of them.  So, in a since we do have
"psychological keys"  but they were created by the psychoanalytic
movement.  I don't think that H.P.B. would object in general to
these psychological interpretations, but I think they would more
properly fall in her scheme under psychological aspects of the
physical key, which H.P.B. says is the only one in the hands of
science.  Perhaps Jung's material relating to the Quest
mythologies would be related to the psychological aspect of the
anthrological key.

     The keys that H.P.B. has above are easy to recognize because
she gives examples for the use of these keys all through the SD.
If there is a "psychological key,"  why doesn't she give examples
for its use?  Why did she include it as an aspect of the physical
key in ISIS UNVEILED?  And which of the seven keys would it be
another name for?  Or, perhaps, which of the seven keys would it

Jerry Hejka-Ekins

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