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Constant Vigilance

By Tom Carney
March 2006

It may be a little hard to figure out, but this talk is about Pisces. It's about dying and living.

I am talking about disciples here. And in my view, disciples are where you find them. They exist in all walks of life, at all levels of the economic or social spectrum. Where one is in this spectrum has very little to do with one's discipleship or lack thereof. Think about reincarnation. Think about the many thousands of roles one has played in the many, many lives one has lived. The role matters very little, and we have all played them all. What one needs to transmute, transform, transfigure may be presented in any role.

It is my view and observation, that the still common conception that disciples need to put something called their personal lives aside in order to do discipling is part of the illusion of separation that was, and, as I said, still is prevalent in the devotional 6th Ray presentation of the Ageless Wisdom that dominated the world during the Piscean era. "True" disciples, the teaching went, were to put all their "worldly things" aside, read personal lives here, and move in various directions. In some cases these moves were actually into a monastery somewhere or a "Commune", but usually the move was into a local somebody's group.

I have seen this notion cause fathers and mothers to put the so called needs of the group in front of their children's needs for parenting, and their own needs for rest, recreation, education, employment focus and a couple of times for employment itself. "True" disciples were supposed to give unswerving and unquestioning loyalty to some one who was supposed to be their teacher or priest or guru or whatever.

The AAB release of D.K's. work sounded the death knell for all of that stuff, or should have. To get this, just read the "Extract From a Statement By The Tibetan" in the front of most of the "blue books". However, as most illusions or misinterpretations of the Teachings that are developed over the long reaches of an Age tend to do, the illusion of "turning one's back on the worldly life" in order to pursue some form of spiritual purity reached an apotheosis during the dwindling period of the age.


Anyone who was around and connected to the world esoteric community starting in the late fifties will remember the explosion of guru-mania that gripped people both in the inner and outer esoteric communities. Partly this mania was driven by the advent of marijuana, hashish, LSD and several other so called "mind altering" drugs, but it was also heavily influenced by a wave of mystical teachers and gurus from India the most widely known one being Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, who popularized meditation with his teachings called Transcendental Meditation.

This conception of discipleship-which was, and still is, I suspect, the way in the Eastern World-never really fit with the kind of individualism that was engendered by the mental focus and development of people in Western cultures. Thus, the phenomena of hankering after a guru and giving everything up, frequently to the guru, though still somewhat prevalent in the outer court, is beginning to fade, finally, from the inner esoteric scene. At least in the Western esoteric communities about which I have any knowledge, people are beginning to realize that that there really is no separate "personal life" which is somehow contrary to or in competition with the life of a disciple.

And what is more important and prevalent is that people are also beginning to understand what Ralph Waldo Emerson meant when, in 1836, he and other young thinkers founded the Transcendental Club, and, with his essay Nature, began to generate the spiritual vision which we call Transcendentalism. The touchstones of this teaching are embodied in phrases such as "Every person has his own pipeline to God." and "Trust thyself: every heart vibrates to that iron string."

Discipleship Circa 2000

Thus, the disciples of today are people like us, people who are living and moving and having their being in the PTA, in the working group at our jobs, in the market where we shop and the playground where we take our kids or grandkids to play and be with other kids. We live and move and have our discipleship within humanity. We drive the freeways. We use the ATM. We vote, I hope.

There is only the one Life, and we are realizing that we are responsible to no one except our own soul. This is the real Path. It is, as we have always been told, a razor edge. The challenge is to walk between the Two Great Lines of Force.

Frequently, when speaking with one another about discipleship, we get into this space where we consider disciples to be the well known people of the planet, great scientists, statesmen, teachers, doctors and so forth, people like Einstein or Jonas Salk, Margaret Sanger, Eleanor Roosevelt and a host of others about whom we all know. We think of these people as disciples because they made great contributions to humanity. Many of these people, Nelson Mandela for example, experienced great hardship and had to make great sacrifice to attain the insights and the "points of view" which enabled them to make their contributions. And, yes, a number of them like Martin King and Dag Hammarskjöld for example, paid for their work with their lives.

On the other hand, I know of, actually if we stop to think about it, we all know of many people who have gone through a period of refocusing or more accurately discovering their truth. It's like we have been looking at life through a pair of poorly focused binoculars. Only, because we had been taught or told so, we thought that that was the way it was supposed to look. Then something happens, the focus of the binoculars suddenly, or sometimes gradually, clears. The deeply held and understood point of view of our inner knowing springs into sight, and through this adjustment to the lens of our vision, we arrive eventually at a deeper understanding of what constitutes value.

The Burning Ground

Usually, as many of us know, this refocusing and deeper understanding is gained as a result of our passing through some extremely painful experiences in our lives. These are refocusing experiences. This is Life adjusting the lens on our binoculars. It is during the passage over these burning grounds that we learn, as did the great names of history, the meaning of relinquishment and sacrifice. We think of the contributions to the unfolding Plan made by the well known lights of our history as great, and in many respects they are. However, I think we need to re-visit what constitutes a "great contribution."

One, just one, example is of a woman and man about whom I know. This couple had several children. They were not unusual in anyway. They were your typical kinds of people and parents. They were focused pretty much on material living, and they did not pay that much attention to the children. One of the children was lost to them through some ugly event. This experience turned these people inside out.

Rather Ordinary People

I would like to focus for a moment on this part of the story. These two rather ordinary people, a husband and wife lost a child in an ugly accident. These two people had no social recognition. They were in no way shakers and movers on hardly any stage. It is very likely that you could Google these people and get zero hits. These people were, like you and me, basically, nobody. Now, having made that clear, who is to say that the experience these people went through was any less traumatic, any less painful and anguishing than the very similar experience that Al Gore and his wife Mary Elizabeth went through when one of their children had a serious accident.

We all know from Al Gore's testimony, how that experience refocused the Gore's lives and led to a deeper understanding of what constitutes value. We have seen the evidence of these new views and understandings spelled out in his book, Earth in the Balance and the positions he has been taking in regards to the present political situation in the world. As for Mary Elizabeth Gore, anyone can read the two books that she and her husband wrote and published in 2002, Joined at the Heart and Spirit of Family. We have seen the very considerable contributions that these two disciples have made to the unfolding Plan, and, friends, from these two, I will not be surprised by still further contributions of even greater impact.

But let me tell you about the couple that I know who had a very similar life experience to the Gores. Nothing outwardly changed for this couple. They did not move away. They did not withdraw from life. They sold nothing. They abdicated no responsibilities. After a few years, they both improved their positions in their respective jobs.

Outwardly, things remained the same; however, the inward focus the motivation for why they were living shifted. It shifted dramatically. As their story, and the way they behaved became known in the smallish community in which they lived, the level of their social standing in the community actually rose. They became quiet examples of loving and understanding individuals, respected and appreciated for their efforts in the community around child welfare and educational programs.

Significant Contributions

Thus, by bringing a high spiritual frequency into their lives and into their immediate communities, they ultimately made a significant contribution to the community in which they lived and moved and had their being. They planted the seeds of brotherhood. They modeled right human relations. This community was and is, after all, just a microcosm of the community we call humanity.

So, who is ready to say how the tendrils of brotherhood grow in a community into which they have been planted? What constitutes "significant"? The manifestation of an individual who becomes central to the unfolding cosmic Plan is the result of thousands upon thousands of such individual sacrifices made at personal and family levels. We are just one Humanity and the tiniest step into the Light and out of the darkness makes a significant difference in the "larger picture."

There is really only one picture. The notion that one's personal life is somehow in conflict with one's soul purpose and that one needs to give up or put aside one's personal obligations to family, companions, pledges, etcetera so that one can make a difference in the larger picture is in my view, just bunk. I have however, seen this argument used as an excuse for individuals to cop out on their responsibilities to their communities. When one truly dedicates one's life to the Great Salvage, one need not go anywhere or put aside any of one's personal responsibilities in any area of one's life. Usually what one is faced with is a shift in point of view. One pursues exactly the same life as before. However, one enters into what we intellectually call the stages of transmutation, transformation and eventually transfiguration. The only way to truly understand these intellectually tossed around concepts, of course, is to do the disciple thing.

As far as what I am trying to say here about Pisces goes, I think I am just trying to point out that since the advent of Aquarius, the direction of discipleship has changed. The mountain top is in the valley, and the door way into it is not to die but to live on the cross.

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