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Out of the Darkness, Comes the Light

Joann S. Bakula
December 2009


This 10th meditation of the year is the second one in Capricorn this year, one having occurred last January. For many, it will occur on New Year's eve, the last day of '09, as well as of the decade, and entry into '10, a perfect number in Pythagoras' numerology. It lends itself to a review of the year and decade, to reviewing the cycle from different perspectives, such as world service, or world problems and world progress. The traditional themes for this meditation are initiation, the 3rd ray of Creative Intelligence, summiting the mountains of experience, peak experiences, the darkness of materialism, and the incredible lightness of light supernal. Saturn, the extra-planetary energy associated with this meditation, is called the sacred planet of the 3rd ray of Creative Intelligence, and is also said to be "one of the most potent of the four Lords of Karma and forces humanity to face up to its history. Such is the intention and purpose of karmic opportunity" (EA). It is also a time when the sun has turned northward, the depth of darkness has passed at the winter solstice, and the days are getting longer, in the northern hemisphere anyway, where the majority of the world's population lives. The time of the year is particularly symbolic of the times we live in, which many describe as deeply materialistic and dark. It is when the times are darkest and light seems lost, that the greatest light is invoked and seen. Then we know that the darkness leads to light, as death leads to life, in great unending cycles in a world without end.

Hercules at the 10th Gate
In the myth of Hercules, popular with secular meditators, the labor involves the deepest descent and test of compassion. As Hercules passes through the 10th gate he faces fearsome tests. He must cross the river Styx into the realm of the dead and rescue Prometheus. Charon, the ferryman--the story goes--was so shaken by seeing a grim-faced mortal crossing the river of death that he forgot to collect his fee! Hercules has to descend into Hades, meet the lord of the underworld, battle the three-headed dog Cerberus who guards the realm, and find Prometheus, the giver of fire to humankind, who is being tortured by the gods for having done so. Prometheus is chained to a rock where a bird of prey eats out his liver every day, only to have it grow back every night. He is a great hero for humanity, who has been punished through many eons for having come to the aid of humanity. Hercules must end Prometheus' suffering from torture and set him free. This Hercules does and becomes 'Hercules the initiate,' a world disciple whose circle of knowledge and wholeness has expanded. As initiate he can enter realms others cannot. His field of awareness is greater and his perspective more inclusive. Hercules has successfully entered the realm of the dead, like Christ did, and freed the hero who was imprisoned there. He demonstrated both compassion and power in reaching realms not open to ordinary consciousness, and performing tasks there. Greater freedom of esoteric fields become his through virtue of his courage and motivation. The circle of life and death, darkness and light ar

e both known to him and have become fields of service to humanity. This is the sign of an initiate.

When, at the third or enlightened transfiguration initiation, we are purified of what we think we want, free from the arrogance of supposed superior knowledge, having achieved undivided mental direction, intention and purification of motivation, "then with prepared bodies can the ability to see and hear on all the planes be granted and achieved, and the faculty of reading and comprehending the records be safely employed, for with fuller knowledge comes added power. The heart is now sufficiently pure and loving, and the intellect sufficiently stable to withstand the strain of knowing." (IHS)

The Dark World Orwell Foresaw
Home alone, in the privacy of your own living room, are you allowed to talk? This sounds funny to those who live in freedom, but in the Orwellian world of "1984", everyone was under permanent surveillance by untold numbers, and every sound was heard. There was no freedom of speech; indeed, there was no freedom of thought. Silence was imposed through fear. Words came to mean their opposite, called 'double-speak.' The ministry of love is where there was no darkness; here the lights were kept on at all times in order to sleep-deprive those being tortured. Some authors have noted uncomfortable similarities today to what George Orwell foresaw after WWII, and warn us that the use of fear has historically been used to deprive people of their freedoms and civil liberties. 'The price of freedom is eternal vigilance,' Thomas Jefferson said. We are responsible for what we do and what we allow to be done to us. Will world servers of the future see us as the generation who allowed the Orwellian world to externalize? In a review of what we have done and what we have failed to do, has fear caused us to betray our fundamental human rights? Many have asked these questions since 9/11, and even earlier, and will continue to do so.

By way of a personal/transpersonal review we can ask ourselves, how often are we preoccupied with personality, our own or-worse yet-other peoples'? Do we concern ourselves with talking about events, people, or ideas--the hierarchy of physical, emotional/social, or mental worlds? Is our focus always on humanity as a whole, or is it still shadow-boxing or searching through early childhood experiences in the Jungian and Freudian analytical exercises? These are necessary beginning steps that become obstacles if they are not left behind for the greater work of recognizing and actualizing our innate human potential for enlightenment, the 'greater alchemical work,' as Jung called it. Young disciples talk about themselves, their opinions and personalities, attractions and aversions, often indulging in appraisal of other disciples' personalities: this involves the lesser work of purification from glamour, as in Raja Yoga or the Yoga Sutras' yama and niyama. World servers are occupied with seeing world need and meeting it however they can in whatever field they have chosen. They seldom mention themselves or pass judgment on others whose focus is on humanity and the world of ideas. Their focus is steadily on the larger work of world integration, compassion, and the inclusive point of view.

The World of Light Supernal
Although each meditation is said to have its own quality of light, no keynote for meditation includes a more incredibly beautiful light than the synthesis of all the lights, called the "light supernal," an extra-planetary light of the atmic plane where "the Christ can and does function," composed of "the light of the seven Rays … blended with that of the Seventh Ray." Christ "will act as a lens through which the light can be focused and adapted to human need." The invocative cry "now mounting from humanity … originates upon the plane of emotions" because He is the "Desire of all Nations" and plans for activity "are being laid in the higher correspondence of that plane, the buddhic plane, or the plane of pure reason." All disciples and initiates provide the motivating power; "it is therefore a joint movement, qualified by the desire and the motivation of the united Hierarchy and Humanity" and enhanced by the planetary Logos whose energy brings spirit and matter together and consequently a re-organizing of human affairs. (DNA II)

The Wishing Tree
The practice of bringing a pine tree indoors, decorating it at Christmas time, and calling it a wishing tree, is unique to the European tradition, but the idea of a wishing tree is well known in yogic philosophy and practice in the chakra system as a small chakra called the kalpa tree or Peepal tree, an eight-petaled lotus named the anandakanda, just under the heart chakra. It is the etheric seat of Ista-deva or the 'personal god,' the internal link to Brahmam. Google 'wishing tree' and you'll find a colorful picture of it and its use in bhakti or devotional yoga. Exploring the meaning of symbols and myths from around the world can expand our appreciation and knowledge, leading to an intuitive understanding in service of an integrating world.

Wishing you and yours all of the joys and light of the season, and goodwill in the group consciousness of all world servers,

Joann S. Bakula
bakula@jeffnet.org

References
Alice A. Bailey, Discipleship in the New Age, Vol. II. NY: Lucis, pp. 370,426.
----Esoteric Astrology. NY: Lucis, p. 164.
----Initiation, Human and Solar. NY: Lucis, p. 88.
----The Labours of Hercules. NY: Lucis, Chapter 10.
Swami Vivekananda, Raja Yoga. NY: Ramakrishna-Vivekananda Center, pp. 140-147.