The yearly calendar of twelve meditations dedicated to serving humanity as a whole, and its relations, is a heuristic device for spiritual evolution. What is the next step ahead as we become aware of humanity as one living organism in a web of life, visible and invisible? What new energies, new expanded capabilities, whole new possibilities now exist just beyond concrete thought and language? In meditation we work in the space where language does not exist. The ineffable energies planetary plan and purpose will find their useful forms and expressions in due time, working out as projects and policies, for instance. Meditation raises consciousness to realms of reality that then have a chance to influence policy and practice with a more inclusive, holistic and far-reaching perspective.
The three meditations of Aries, Taurus and Gemini — often falling in March, April, May — represent the higher interlude of the spiritual year as one breath, one cycle of life in the larger whole. A high interlude between two major cycles is always a joyous occasion and so it is in this year of many changes, 2013. Working in the interlude signifies a new beginning, a new cycle of growth and a new exploration of what we hold in potential. With each coming new year or new spring the freedom to grow and to be what one is in essence, springs forth. To hope anew for freedom from the past and past constraints comes naturally as a new cycle of growth requires change and motion. The new will come, and what life qualities emerge from this new opportunity will create our work of art. That every pen, voice, brush and creative instrument has its limitation fades from emphasis as the joy of the new song rises and freedom brings its new known, its uplifting path ahead past obstacles.
'Resurrection is a process,' the recent Arcane School letter emphasizes, and this is reflected in the stages of transpersonal psychological growth of the individual as God immanent, using the stages that Jesus Christ enacted for us in his life. We each travel the path from conscious birth, to purification and refinement of desires and motives, to the transfiguration of the life as it realizes its full potential, to resurrection from death in some form as we knew it. What the archetypal Christ showed us is each individual's, group's and nation's path to immortality and that each must find by becoming a 'light onto ourselves and working out our own salvation,' as the Buddha said, within the synthesis of the whole or all in which each part has its existence.
Resurrection is also a term that may be heard in some hospitals these days. "Resurrection Man" is the title of an interview in New Scientist (March 9-15, 2013) of resuscitation specialist Sam Parnia who dismisses the argument that near-death experiences are hallucinations. For that, he says, you need a functioning brain. When you are dead, even momentarily, your brain is not functioning. Parnia says, "I don't believe that your consciousness is annihilated when you reach the point of death. How far does it continue? I don't know. But I do know that at least in the period of time in which we can bring people back to life that entity of the human mind has not been annihilated." Although there is nothing mystical about the brain, as 'super-brain' scientists say, higher consciousness or mind is rather more illusive and the group of scientists willing to be open-minded and therefore truly scientific is growing. Dr. Parnia continues to conduct experiments in NDEs. His new book is entitled Erasing Death in the U.S. by HarperOne.
As esotericists we view the world primarily in terms of energy, and although these twelve meditations are seen primarily in terms of energies and great planetary centers, the contributions of religions to the spiritual path and world service are also recognized, used and appreciated. The twelve meditations for world service are used in addition to the calendars of the world religions. Easter and Wesak are celebrated as the two major Christian and Buddhist occasions taking place in the higher interlude, followed by the festival of humanity itself as one world entity.
Easter is the culmination of the life of the Christ both as sacrifice/will and death/resurrection. Sacrifice and will are the beginning and end of the same process, as are birth and death, and death and resurrection. In a sense Christ plays the same role as Yamataka, the slayer of death in Buddhism. Finally "the magnetic link between the true man, and the vibratory sensitive substance of which his three world bodies are made" (Bailey, CF, p. 878) is broken. "The need for incarnation is no longer felt, the chains of karma are broken, and the man is liberated." Esoterically the story told here in this path of evolution is the sacrifice of the Monad or pure Spirit to earthly existence and its eventual release. "The reincarnating monads who are called the divine Sacrifices, Lords of Knowledge, Will and Sacrifice, … are ourselves" (Bailey, EA, p. 98). Ray I, as we know, is the energy of Will or Power. "This ray is outstandingly related to that aspect of will which conquers death." and yet it is also called the energy of the destroyer and the will to initiate (ibid., p. 597).
The Great Invocation
The resurrection of hope may also be seen working within the process of invocation/evocation and in the universality of the Great Invocation: every human has a mind, heart and will; why wouldn't the planet?. Actually, all animate creatures have some form of mind, heart and will or volition. This web of consciousness is as intricate and all-pervasive as the web of life. What humanity does with its consciousness affects not only its direction and activity but the entire field of consciousness extending far beyond the human to include the trans-human or Hierarchical and the animals and creatures of nature. Each has developed its own form of language or communication to connect it with the others — or to separate it!
Rewordings and reworkings of the Great Innovation are bound to occur subjectively as language accommodates to the changing world, with its gender-free and secular demands, and never changes the original wording of this great tool that Alice Bailey and the Tibetan gave to humanity and to the world — as its influence extends far beyond the human enterprise. In the spirit of the new possibilities, and overcoming the obstacles of language, many have found it useful when sharing with the interfaith world and the scientific/secular world to suggest the terms 'all' in the Great Invocation as a substitute for the word 'men,' and Kindness as a word for the Christ principle signifying the major quality of the Lord of Love. The energy and ideas behind the words and the universality of mind, heart and will are what unifies, and this is what is most important.As we know the Great Invocation is an English translation of an ancient language and the term Christ refers to an office.
Vital Forces in Each New Birth
The vital breath of life, as we know, is called prana in Sanskrit, Chi in Chinese and in tantra or Vajrayana Buddhism it is described as "a combination of life and 'heat' that consciousness enters to begin a new rebirth." This vital force is said to have five expressions, representing everywhere as all four directions plus the center. These five natural pathways link each birth to one of the five primordial spiritual originating impulses, called the five Dhyana Buddha families or Dhyana Chohans. Even in the subtle esoteric structure of the physical form there are five 'winds' in the etheric channels that link us back to our originating whole. One of these, the udana, is the upward-moving force, and is associated with fire and the Dhyana Buddha family of the West, Amitaba. The 'seat' of udana is said to be in the throat center and its function is to speak (Geshe Tashi Tsering, Tantra: The Foundations of Buddhist Thought, p. 123-4). With the marvelous and rich heritage we have in the Bailey books combining Christianity and Buddhism, especially Vajrayana Buddhism, we have a language that integrates not only East and Western traditions but God immanent and God transcendent, the macrocosm and the microcosm. This is a new birth.
Alice Bailey and the Wikipedia
Many of us were first attracted to the work of Alice Bailey because her approach was inclusive of Christ and Buddha, the Bible, the Bhagavad Gita and the Yoga Sutras of Pantanjali. Her intention was not to find an alternative to Christianity but to find a union in the spiritual disciplines of East and West, eliminating the competition and rancor so harmful to spiritual harmony. Writing from the end of WWI through the end of WWII, her principle message for disciples was to serve the world by addressing the problems that prevent right human relations. Therefore analysis of humanity's problems, such as racism, separateness, selfishness, aggression, glamour and illusion, and the other obstacles to humanity's integration is found throughout the 24 volumes of her work. The macrocosm has the same pattern of growth and stages of conscious awareness as the individual and these are each considered. Why this is so distorted by the writers of the Alice Bailey page in Wikipedia — generally a reliable and unbiased book — is a question that remains unanswered. At least it shows the public what Alice Bailey and her true friends have to contend with.
The Many Themes of Aries
"Creation — Being — Activity — Strife — Synthesis" (Bailey, EA, p. 93), these are other keywords and themes of Aries. "I come forth and from the plane of mind, I rule," is the seed thought suggested. "Aries is the zodiacal sign through which the first Ray of Will or Power reaches our planetary life," Bailey writes (ibid., p. 91). Elsewhere it is also said that 'as Aries may be equated with the Love of God coming forth as Hierarchy, Taurus with the Will of God in Shamballa, so Gemini anchors divine Intelligence within humanity itself' creating eventually a great interrelated circulating and expressing triangle of Will, Heart and Mind on Earth.
As we find the themes that most appeal to our groups and nations and United Nations, we join in a multifaceted, interleaved meditation inclusive of all fields of human endeavor, the creative work of all seven rays, and hopes and goodwill of all who seek to serve humanity through this meditation.
Joann S. Bakula
Arcane School, March 2013 letter. NY: Lucis Trust.
Bailey, Alice A. Esoteric Astrology. NY: Lucis Publishing Co.
—. A Treatise on Cosmic Fire. NY; Lucis Publishing Co.
Parnia, Sam. Erasing Death. San Francisco: HarperOne.
Teresi, Dick. "Resurrection Man," New Scientist. March 9, 2013, pp. 32-33.
Tsering, Geshe Tashi. Tantra: the Foundation of Buddhist Thought. Somerville, MA: Wisdom Publications.