The seed thought suggested by the Tibetan in the Alice A. Bailey books for the Aquarius Festival is, "Water of life am I, poured forth for thirsty men." In this meditation we seek to emphasize the qualities of universality, group consciousness, brotherhood, service, and intuition. It is preeminently the sign of the new age and intuition, dispelling as it does, the illusion of time, closing the gap between past, present and future, bringing to life the truth of who we are now. In the words of the great Sufi poet Rumi, "The Logos is digging a channel for water to reach the next generation. During every generation there is one who brings the word of God; and yet the teachings of those who have come before are always helpful." The continuity of the teaching is not obstructed by time or place. It flows like the water of life, in us and through us. The Avatar of Aquarius is a group event, a lineage promise and a prophesy. In higher human development we honor and celebrate the progression to world server in Aquarius from "development of the individual consciousness [Leo] into world consciousness. Thus a man becomes a world server."
We also acknowledge the progression of history and the ages, as the sun enters the house of Aquarius and humanity enters the age of Aquarius. A new time and a new space are upon us, while the old passes away. "The at present dubious science of astrology has sidetracked the legitimate interest of humanity in the astronomical teaching and its spiritual interpretation of the passage through the signs of the zodiac." (The Reappearance of the Christ, p.79) Looking at the long view of history as a progression from one age of approximately 2100 years to the next reflects how long it takes the sun to transit one of the twelve constellations of the zodiac, the pathway that the sun makes across the sky. In the language of the astro-mythological view, this means we have historic memory of what we in the West call the age of Taurus, the golden bull, of Aries, the lamb, and of Pisces, the fishes, which is now ending as the sun enters the space/time of Aquarius, the sign of the water-carrier. The language of the ages is the language of myth as "History becomes legend and legend myth" (Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings). Much is hidden in myth that reveals history and human nature. The symbol of Aquarius is the water carrier, not as beast of burden, but as a human serving others. Many have associated this archetypal human with Christ in the West, and in the East, with Maitreya known as the Coming One. He is typically portrayed as holding a vessel or vase, not unlike the water carrier.
Buddha crowned Maitreya as the "bodhisattva who would succeed him in reigning and watching over earth's destiny". Part of how he works today is to represent the future, keeping humanity in the right evolutionary direction. Here is an energy embodied in a figure, ideal for the meditation in Aquarius, at a time when so many think we are heading in the wrong direction. Maitreya, like Christ, represents a future of compassion. Indeed, by today's standards, it could be called extreme compassion, or reverence for all of life and the precious opportunity it brings. He is known for having shrunk himself into a golden globe, a symbol of hope for the future in conditions of extreme adversity.(Thurman, The Central Philosophy of Tibet, pp. 18-21.) Maitreya is said to dwell in a heaven outside of time and space "surrounded by the great masters of earth's history." (Thurman p. 84) These are the world servers of all time who are in meditation on the new group of world servers of our time, a group that Alice Bailey and the Tibetan made a sociological category, perhaps, as Kirkegaard made the 'individual' a philosophical category. It takes the intuition of a world group to dispel world illusion (Glamour: A World Problem, p. 184). "To the extent that the world servers within the human kingdom can maintain their position within the stream of Aquarian energy, receiving, giving and living the power and the love available to them, so will they serve to irradiate and transform the whole human environment." In regard to the psychology of higher human development, Shelby Steele, on the Bill Moyers Journal, said "The challenge of the collective is to produce individuals," which he described as people who have identified the masks they are wearing and have taken them off. The challenge of individuals is to become world servers. The masks of ideology hide an identification that is false and based upon misknowledge. Those who aspire to be world thinkers and world servers are freeing themselves from the mask within the mask.
In the Buddhist tradition, two main branches of the great philosophical tree of knowledge are shown on either side of the Buddha, and represent the two primary means of liberation that the Buddha (or Christ or Self) and Buddha consciousness within us uses to bring about gnosis, spiritual enlightenment and salvation. On one side Maitreya's teaching serves as the basis of the Idealistic (vignanavada) school, or the Experientialist (Yogachara) school. He sits at the head of the lineage of "magnificent deeds," of compassion and universal love. He sits in a complementary position to the "profound view" of Manjushri, the wisdom side of Buddha, who joins these two ways, the way of compassion and the pondering stilpoint of wisdom, both representing different teachings and different stages of the path. The word Maitreya is derived from the words for mother, love and friend. This is because he will be born not in the warrior class, as Buddha Sakyamuni was--because by then the world will not be warlike--but in the spiritual/philosophical Brahmin tradition. The extreme of the 'compassion approach side' would lead to mysticism and sentimentalism; the extreme of the 'reason approach side' to the cold, skeptical and cynical. The two lineages, like an upward path winding right, then left, represent the use of both "critical reason and reasonable faith," (Thurman pp. 20-21) the union of the two most profound ways of looking at life and the world, and the split that now divides the world into warlike camps. In light of Aquarius, an air sign, the two hold promise of coming together, healing an artificial split, fragmented by ideologies and their masks. Is the Avatar of Aquarius, the Christ as world bodhisattva, likely to unite these two methods to heal a world divided?
The Tibetan's definition and description of intuition and the obstructing glamour of misknowledge is very similar to that of the great Tsong Khapa, founder of the Dalai Lama's lineage. Described by Buddhist scholar Robert Thurman, "Misconception and illogic are only overcome by rigorous critical knowledge. The 'intuitive wisdom' he [Tsong Khapa] recommends to terminate misknowledge is not uncultivated, naive intuition. Indeed, "the unphilosophical ordinary person" perceives intrinsic realities in what could be called instinctual or gut feeling non-rational intuition, which only confirms misknowledge. True intuition only finds in basis from pure reason, abstract mind, truth or wisdom. "Wisdom (prajna) is the critical investigation of facts", which only becomes "intuitive" when it has firmly reached its conclusion and transcended misleading thinking. The unwise, uncritical, naive type of intuition only leads to a wall of "experiential ratification of an alienated bondage in 'meaningless'" and '"thrown-ness in a closed world of unalterable suffering." To this is added that, "Wise intuition is the fruit of long philosophical cultivation of critical insight, developed in sustained contemplation of the profound nature of things, until reason transforms instinct and habit, and what one knows rationally to be the case is intuitively felt to be the case." (Thurman, p. 159) The transcendent way of the bodhisattvas integrates both wisdom and techniques of liberation (tantra).
The Tibetan taught that buddhi or intuition is both pure reason and universal love, a love having no relation to sentimentality or affection, but based upon identification with all beings, upon a universality that results in the experience of true compassion. The glamour of misknowledge and the veil of distortion are two factors prominent today obstructing both reason and compassion. Misknowledge is perpetrated by massive thoughtforms of illusion. Perhaps this is why the 5th ray of science is dominant in the 3rd initiation stage. To be transfigured means to see reality, to see life as it really is directly, freed from the veil of illusion to be rent. Prove it, the scientist says, requiring that we see things from the point of view of what is actual, what is here and now. This is the test of the 5th ray. Does it hold up to what is, or is it a thoughtform built on premises mistaken or outdated? Do we have the flexibility to begin an exploration, or a test of our truths, with either existence or essence, science or religion? Both are needed. Intelligence requires both. The academic world of today requires science. If we are to communicate and integrate anything of our teaching into the fields of service we must understand the intellectual basis of higher education. We can fall into the glamour of thinking that because we have a rare and high teaching that merely invoking the name of an authority is proof enough of truth. Holding up the Bible was proof of truth for centuries. Now we have scientific standards. The world is fractured over the ideologies that have collected around these two polarities. Political, social and economic effects are felt the world over causing fear and pressure to adhere to the ideology that has the most affect in your life.
Today many are saying that we need a new language, a new way of integrating experiential-ethical-spiritual-knowledge into a universal form that communicates. So much is lost in translation even within the same language. We pay tribute with Thurman to those heroes "of humankind's battle against misknowledge, and thank them for ensuring that the sunlight of the Victor's teaching still shines brightly in the minds of thoughtful people,"(Thurman, p. 33) Anchored in the greatest teachings humanity has, aided by intuitive ideas translated into ideals, and core doctrines interpreted non-dogmatically, and not in political ideologies, can we strive to find the language of universality that can reach any mind, heart and will? We have a great gift in the Great Invocation, which has the power to reach directly from the center to the periphery, from universal love and light to every individual heart and mind.
Wishing you a heart and mind that pour forth love, compassion and clarity to humans confused with misknowledge and thirsting for the teaching.