Hi again, and a few questions
Oct 25, 1995 04:55 AM
by William Parrette
It's been a while (since last May!) since I've been active on
the theos-l list. I've had an ISP for several months now but
they're running Linux and I've been taking my time trying to get
used to the absence of some tools and the look-alikes available
for others. The "water looks warm and inviting" so I thought I'd
at least start to "stick my toes back in" and get active in some
mailing lists again. First stop -- theos-l!
Some of you may remember me from some of my posts about the
Cincinnati Study Center (with which I am involved) and my
thoughts on the need for some revamping of theosophical educa-
tional materials. Well, it just so happens that a small group of
us have been getting together in Cincinnati on a monthly basis
and we have decided to start studying the booklet published by
the TS called _Introductory_Study_Course_in_Theosophy_ (Part I).
We got through Lesson 1 just fine -- no problems -- and, in fact,
had some interesting discussions.
However, when Lesson 2 came up for discussion ...
Lesson 2 is entitled "The Plan and Purpose of Life" and deals
in general with the three "aspects" and their "outpourings" or
"life impulses" as well as with the journey of the Monad through
the planes into dense physical forms and then back to join the
Logos. Now, the text didn't seem to bother anybody in our group
and most seemed to at least feel that they understood most of it
(most being the operative word here ;-) ). However when we tried
to correlate the text with two diagrams at the end of the lesson,
all kinds of confusion and questions broke loose!
Diagram 1 (page 23, if you have a copy) is a "graph" that
shows the "planes of existence" on its vertical axis and a circu-
lar "pipeline" that starts with three symbols at the top labelled
first aspect, second aspect, and third aspect. The second aspect
descends through the planes in what is labelled as the first out-
pouring before it hits the physical plane and ascends back into
the first aspect in what is labelled as the third outpouring.
The "pipeline" has a dashed line that flows through it which gets
thicker as it descends into the physical and then thinner as it
heads back out. this line stops at another symbol in the thrid
outpouring at the mental plane. This circular "pipeline" is bi-
sected in the middle by another "pipeline" that starts with a
symbol labelled as the third aspect and is itself labelled as the
first outpouring. This "pipeline" has a solid line that flows
through it that gets thicker as it descends into the physical.
Diagram 2 (page 24) is entitled "Evolution of the soul" and
seems to be another circular "graph" of the Monad's travel from
the Logos through the planes into the mineral, vegatable, animal,
and human realms before it starts its ascent back up through the
planes to return to the Logos. There seems to be some connection
between the two diagrams with their circular nature and some of
their labels. On this diagram, Atma seems to correspond to the
Adi, Monadic, and Nirvanic planes; Buddhi seems to correspond to
the Buddhic plane; Manas seems to correspond to the mental and
astral plane; while Minerals, Vegetables, Animals, and Individu-
alization seem to correspond to the Physical plane.
Once we started comparing the text of the Lesson to these two
diagrams, confusion set in and all kinds of questions started to
emerge. For example:
* What is the correlation between the symbols and the termi-
nology used in Diagram 1? That is to say do the circular
symbols used at the top have some meaning with respect to
the terms related to the aspects and does the pipeline con-
taining the flowing line have some meaning with respect to
the terms related to the outpourings. And, is there any
meaning to the symbol that appears in the mental plane of
the third outpouring.
* What is the meaning of the joining of the three outpourings
in the physical plane?
* Is there any meaning to the dashed versus the solid lines
contained within the outpourings? One goes from nadir to
zenith and then starts back up only to stop in the mental.
The other seems to only go in one direction and stops.
* Is there any specific meaning behind the three symbols used
at the top of the diagram which are labelled as the aspects?
* Is there any correlation between Diagram 1 and Diagram 2?
* What about all of the symbolism used in Diagram 2? The
flames? ... The sparks? ... The upside down solid triangle
(physical matter?) ... The right-side up hollow triangle?
I hope that some of you more experienced Theosophists out
there have a copy of this "course material," can look at the text
and the diagrams, and give us a little help. I told the group
that I would post these questions, gather any responses, and
print them out for our next meeting (November 14). So any and
all help will be sincerely appreciated.
(BTW, I hope you'll excuse any spelling errors in this post -- I
haven't found the spelling checker yet! :-( )
Thanks, in advance, for your thoughts and responses. And, as I am
often wont to say in closing, may you always grok in fullness ...
William A. (Bill) Parrette
New personal signature work in progress ...
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