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misc, third try

Nov 16, 1994 01:01 AM
by Jerry Hejka-Ekins

Jerry S.

JS>      I think the literature is pretty clear,
 though, that most people who have to lie or cheat
 in business and who sit in church and hear
 morality preached to them, will eventually have a
 mental breakdown at some point.  The psychological
 term is cognitive dissonance - we rationalize away
 impossible or immoral situations because of
 practical necessity.  Those who have a conscience
 will only be able to do this temporarily.

On the other hand, I've known people who managed to live their
whole lives under the protection of carefully constructed
cognitive dissonances.  Seems that they managed to drive everyone
else nuts.

JHE>>Since consciousness is an infinitely
 graded plane, it is traditionally defined by
 establishing poles (lokas and talas).  Since the
 division of anything that is infinitely graded
 must be arbitrary, the choosing of one possible
 division over another is done for the purpose of
 getting across one or another aspect of the
 teachings.  Thus one division will always be as
 good as another, depending upon what you want to
 get across.

JS>This comment is rather obscure, although I think I
 know what was intended.  I know that the early
 theosophical writers implied that consciousness
 can somehow move across the cosmic planes in a
 continuous manner (nature never makes abrupt
 moves, I think G de P says somewhere.  If
 consciousness can make motions that are
 continuous, so that we slowly gradually ease from
 one to the other (i.e., by ascending or descending
 subplanes) then divisions become relative, as
 Jerry implies. P.  was talking about the sub-planes in terms of
spirit-matter.  Subplanes change their nature (as everything is
in a state of change) by becoming more physical or less physical.
We can, from one point of view, describe this change as
"ascending or descending subplanes." Consciousness, on the other
hand is universal, therefore the concept of "motion" as we
understand it is meaningless.  Einstein calls attention to this
when he showed that "etheric motion" is not a measurable concept
since ether is universal.  On cannot step outside of the
universal to find a frame of reference from which motion could be

JS> However, I rather think that
 consciousness moves in jumps, much like quanta on
 the subatomic level.  We know today that nature
 does, in fact, move in jumps and is as
 discontinuous as it is continuous (e.g., quantum

That applies in quantum mechanics, but we are still dealing with
the physical.  Remember, HPB and GdeP define light as being on
the highest subplane of the physical, and the activity of
electrons making quantum leaps from shell to shell is part of the
phenomena of the emission of light.

JS>  Experience also tells us that our
 consciousness moves from plane to plane in jumps.
 This is further substantiated by looking a HPB's
 Gupta Vidya Model, in which all vertical paths
 between Globes are "laya centers" which HPB
 clearly points out are discontinuous leaps rather
 than paths.  In fact, it is just in this area
 where I have found the most discrepancy between
 her GV Model and the Qabalistic Tree of Life where
 the Sephiroth are all interconnected by 22
 pathways that can be explored by consciousness -
 thus the Tree is relatively continuous while the
 GV Model (using laya centers, which HPB says is
 the *only* way to cross through the planes) is
 not.  Anyone have some ideas on this?

I haven't found this implied in HPB.  the gradations of
consciousness from one sub-sub plane to another is continuous, so
that the exact distinction between one sub-sub plane to another
is arbitrary.

As for laya centers being the portals of "discontinuous leaps
rather than paths", we need to come to an understanding of what
we mean by "laya center." "Laya center" like "karma" is thought
of as a noun, when a verb would do better.  Like "karma," "laya
center" is more of a process than a "thing" which something
"moves through." Take an ice cube and throw it into a sauce pan
and put a fire under it.  In good time, the ice cube will "move
through" two laya centers as it changes from a solid to a liquid
to a gas.  If you want to call the change of an H2O molecule from
a solid to liquid to a gas "discontinuous leaps" comparable to
the leaps of electrons from shell to shell, then that is fine
with me, but we are back to physical phenomena, and cannot apply
to the non-physical.  It could apply to the theoretical tachyon
as "moving through a laya center" as it slows to the speed of
light.  But this is getting into speculating upon speculations.

 JS>In any case, it seems to me that consciousness
 jumps into the lokas and talas (which I believe
 correspond to the Globes of the GV Model) rather
 than eases into them through some kind of pathway.

Whatever is met by "correspondence." Actually everything
corresponds to everything is one manner or another.  Lokas and
talas correspond to globes, but so do colors, planets, metals,
sounds etc.  The trick is to identify the exact nature of the
correspondence.  HPB defines lokas and talas as "poles" or in
other words, extremes between arbitrarily chosen levels of
consciousness.  It is like measuring out time from duration.
Another statement HPB makes is that we are never in exactly the
same state of consciousness in any two instances.  Maybe a better
analogy to consciousness than quantum mechanics might be the old
stream analogy--you can't step into the same stream twice.

As far as the laya portals and the "paths" go, perhaps they are
metaphors for the same thing after all.


LD> I still wish we could think up some ways to counteract
 unethical business practices. I'm not working anymore. I can't
 lose my income. I've done a few small things in my time. One of
 them is trying to practice our belief in universal brotherhood.
 What bothers me is that this warps our whole way of life, almost
 all over the world. That means that it has an "unwholesome"
 influence on the world's Karma.

Yes.  We have to the end of the century to get our act together
says HPB if I understand her right.  Corporate corruption is
world wide and American Corporations became the role models for
the creation of much of it.  The sticky wicket is that there is a
payoff in supporting the corruption--E.g.  a job with cost of
living raises if you keep your mouth shut and play the game.
When wage earning is the only way one knows how to survive, this
becomes a strong incentive to deny or minimize what is going on.
The values that drive capitalism are selfishness and greed.  On
the other hand, capitalism has significantly raised the quality
of living for most of us, and for others, there is the hope that
it might.  It is hard to turn against a system that has done so
well for us.

Arthur Patterson,

      <If thou would'st cross the first hall safely, let not
      thy mind mistake the fires of lust that burns therein
      for the Sunlight. p 6.>

Interesting how different interpretations can come from any one
quote.  Interpretations are very influenced by the context by
which we view them.  My interpretation for this warning is that
the emotional/physical nature is still very much alive, and we
must learn to distinguish this from our spiritual nature.

      <Let thy Soul lend its ear to every cry of pain like the
      lotus bears its heart to drink the morning sun. Let not
      the fierce Sun dry one tear of pain before thyself hast
      wiped it from the sufferers eye. p. 13>

This is my favorite sloka.  Service to humanity--an altruistic
life is a duty.  It may be the karma of our neighbor to fall into
the gutter, but it is our karma to pull him out.

Martin Euser,

ME> Your plans for using my article in your study group sounds
 fine to me.

Thank you.

ME> -it may be a useful exercise for students to apply/learn to
 recognize the workings of the seven juwels of wisdom on their
 own thinking,etc.  Also they can be recognized in nature as a
 whole.  You may want to include my first article on the seven
 jewels and/or G de P's exposition of these in his fundamentals
 of esoteric wisdom.

We have been working on the seven principles for some time now.
My reason for wanting to introduce it is so that they would have
the opportunity to read the views of another student (you) who
raised some issues that this group really hasn't given sufficient
thought to yet.  We have covered the seven principles from a
psychological point of view some time ago, but your essay
represents a different approach than the one that we took.  So I
want them to see another view point and discuss it in light of
their own.

Thank you for reminding me of the seven jewels.  Please e- mail
me a copy of your article as we may be able to use that too.

ME>  Forgive me for elaborating a little bit here. I think it may
 be useful for students. I am greatly indebted to a Dutch
 theosophist, D.J.P. Kok, from whose work - non-copyrighted, and
 only partially published (for the general public)- I greatly
 borrowed, although adding my own insights and order in this

Are you a member of the late D.J.P.  Kok's group? I met Hermann
Vermuden when he was in California a few years ago, and was very

ME> I discovered a problem of nomenclature in G de P's work:
 In the fundamentals he gives the name 'Human ego' to the
 Bhutatman, while in his esoteric instructions he reserves the
 term Human ego for the personal ego, a ray from the human
 (personal) monad or reincarnating_ ego as G de P calls it on
 p.86 [see also p. 54] of his 11th esoteric instruction. The
 Bhutatman is a _reimbodying_ ego. So, I followed G de P's
 esoteric instructions's instead of his fundamentals in
 attributing the term 'human' and hence 'reincarnating' to the
 personal ego/monad.

There is a parallel problem in nomenclature in HPB's writings.
With HPB, there are historical reasons for this.  I wonder what
was behind GdeP's problem.  Any ideas?

JHE>>...issue of unconscious expression of thoughts..

ME> That's why real sincerity of mind is needed, in order not to
 fool ourselves. Practice makes perfect so to speak. We have to
 try it.

The problem is that our friend on the Griffith Park lawn may very
well have believed in his own sincerity.  It just goes to show
HPB's warning about taking pledges.  Any spiritual effort we make
also confronts us with new traps we had unknowingly set for
ourselves.  Each step has its own mini-dweller-on-the-threshold
of that step to challenge us.  But you are right--we have to try

Eldon Tucker,

ET> 1.       When you say that private schools "empty the
 schools of everyone but the minorities and the
 underprivileged" you're making a good argument for the
 voucher system, where the public dollars that minorities
 are entitled to can be used to "vote" which schools are
 best. Privatization has often produced reduced costs and
 increased benefits to the public in other areas, why not
 also in education? Has the existence of private
 universities like Stanford or Harvard hurt public
 universities like UC Berkeley or UCLA?

O.K.  Let's say that everyone gets enough money from the
Government to pay for a private education.  Now we can close down
all of the public schools and use the land for something else.
But now the private schools (unless they practice segregation),
in order to accommodate everyone is back to having a mixed
population of students again--which brings us exactly back to the
problem we started with.

ET> 2.       I agree when you say that ethical decision making
 has more to do with gaining insight into our own actions
 and decisions, as well as those of others. But I would
 also say that the important insight is the clarity of
 the moment as the decisions are made, and not merely one
 of retrospect.

Hopefully, that is what the practice of ethical decision making
will lead to.

ET> 3.       Your mention of the "return good for good, justice
 for evil" passage from the Mahatma Letters was good. The
 important thing with justice to remember is that it is
 what is right in the sense of the overall good, and not
 a pseudonym for personal vengeance.

Well said.

ET> 4.       Regarding focus groups and Pete Wilson, the idea of
 focus groups is not new. I learned about it as one of
 several empirical research methods when studying for my
 MBA in the early 1970's. The intent is to interview a
 small number of "typical" people in depth, as a group,
 to uncover information that you may not have thought of
 otherwise. When doing something like a questionnaire,
 you're limited to what questions you choose in advance,
 and there's not a lot of interaction with the people
 polled, even if you first do a trial questionnaire
 before the primary one. This technique is used in
 advertising, politics, and even, I'm sure, by defense

I realize that it isn't a new technique, but this use of it, I
believe, is new.  But more importantly, it is a subversion of its
power for personal ends.

ET> 5.       When you speak of the current inactivity of
 Theosophists as compared to its past, I think we first
 need to define what is theosophical activity, and where
 and how it is being done. Is there anything special or
 different that Theosophists should be doing, or are they
 just supposed to be "mysteriously wise" people doing
 ordinary activities of the day, including education,
 social reform, business, healing, science, etc.?

Any of the above (wisely or less wisely done) will do.  Anything
but sitting in an easy chair chanting OM with the "mysteriously
wise" belief that they are making things better.  There are a lot
of theosophists who think this way.  I just met a couple more

Jerry Hejka-Ekins

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