The Inner Government of the World

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The Inner Government of the World

By Annie Besant

Ishvara; the Builders of a Cosmos; The Hier­archy of our World; the Rulers; the Teachers; the Forces


I want to put before you, if I can in these three lectures, a certain view of the world, and of the way in which that world is guided and directed. As this meeting is a public meeting, there is one state¬ment I think that I ought to make, which it would not be necessary to make, if it were composed of members of the Theosophical Society. It is important to remember that in the Theosophical Society we have no authority on matters of opinion. Every member is free to work out his own theory of life, to choose his own line of thought, and no one has the smallest right to dictate to any member what he should choose or what he should think. In the Theosophical Society there is only one condition which binds a member, namely, the recognition of Universal Brotherhood. Outside that every member is absolutely free. He may belong to any religion, or he may belong to no religion at all. If he belongs to a religion, he is never asked to leave it, to change it, but only to try to live up to its teachings of spiritual life, recognising the unity of all, to live in harmony with people of his own faith and people of other faiths. When we speak of Theosophy, we may take the word in one of two senses. The first, what it should be to the individual. In that sense there is no difference between Theosophy and the ancient Brahmavidya of India, the Para Vidya, and the Gnosis of the Greek - no difference at all. It is the recognition that man can realise God. It is called, in the Upanishad “the knowledge of Him by whom all things are known”. It is a difficulty rather of our language that we speak in that sense of “knowledge”, because knowledge implies a duality, or indeed a triplicity - the Knower, the Known, and the Relation between them - whereas when the Spirit of man, who comes forth from Ishvara, realises his own nature, it is no longer a case of thinking or of knowing. It is a case of realising that identity. You know it is written again in the Upanishad: “He who says ‘I know’, he knows not,” because the very word knowledge is an error in this realisation. In that, we do not say, “I know”; we say, “I am”. This gives the primary meaning of the word “Theosophy”. Then it is also used in a secondary sense: a certain body of teachings. No one of these particular teachings is binding on any member. The whole of these teachings together are the teachings the Society is formed to put forward in the world, but it does not make them binding on its members. That policy rests on a very sure foundation. The foundation is that no man can really believe a truth, until he has grown to the extent which enables him to see it as truth for himself. A teaching is not really a part of your spiritual life; it comes within the mental life, into that part of your nature which is said to be knowledge, the intellect; and that is able to see that which is akin to itself. The truth in you recognises the truth outside you, when once the inner vision is open. Hence, in the Society, the study of the great fundamental truths of all religions is one of its objects. Members are not asked whether they believe in them or not. They are left to study them, in the full conviction that just as when the eyes are open the man who is not blind sees by the light of the sun, he is not asked to believe in the light, so is truth in the mental world. As soon as the eyes of the inner nature, the eyes of the intellect, are open, it is not a question of argument, but a question of sight. You recognise the truth because the faculty of truth in your own nature shows that it exists. You see by it, as you see by the light of the sun. As long as a man is blind, the sun to him as light is nothing. When the eyes are opened then no argument is necessary as to the existence of the light by which he sees. Truth is regarded in that way, and hence the student is left to study until for himself he knows the truth of any doc¬trine. The teachings which are spread by the Society are those which you find in every great religion. If, for instance, you take a book published by the Central Hindu College as a text-book for Hindu boys, and an Advanced Text-book for Hindu young men in the College, you will find in them certain truths. They are given in the Hindi form. If you take the Theosophical text-book, used for teaching in schools where all religions are taught, where there are boys whose parents hold particular religions, you have those truths given which are common to all religions. The only difference is that in the Theosophical text-book, the various Scriptures of the world in different religions are quoted in support of them, while in the Hindu text-book only the Hindu Scriptures are quoted. That is the only difference so far as the great ideas are con¬cerned; the ideas are identical.

You will understand that in all that I say now, I am dealing with things as they appear to me. They are not binding upon any particular member, for the duty of each is to think for himself. They do not commit the Society as a Society, because that only puts forward acceptance of Universal Brotherhood as a condition of admission. That which I say, I am responsible for. What I say is the result of my own study. It is for every one of you, Theosophists or non-Theosophists, member or non-member, to use your own intellect, your own judgment, your own conscience, in weighing every statement that I make. You ought not to take them ready-made as truth for you. Everyone must use his own thought, and not simply go by that of another. Especially is that so, because I am going to deal with abstruse subjects. Speaking of them as truths, I am speaking largely on my own knowledge and also, in addition to that, taking certain statements congruous with what I know, but applied to a much larger area of facts then I myself am yet able to reach. For I am going to say a few things about the larger Kosmos of the solar systems, which I am not able to examine for myself. I am only dealing with the subject before you as a whole, and will deal with that part briefly. But it is necessary, in order to give you as it were a fairly complete view, because there are many other solar systems about which I know nothing. Most of us speak about many facts of science which we have not been able to verify; for instance, I am unable in astronomy to verify the statements of great astronomers as regards the situation and the relations of our vast solar system. I have not studied astronomy. If I had studied, I could not have attained to the knowl¬edge of great experts in that particular science. But if I find them teaching on the solar system the facts that they have observed and collected by telescope and by the many other ways, like the spectroscope, that they have of examining the composition of planets other than our own, I should take this from them, if their new facts were, generally speaking, congruous with what we know as regards our own constitution, its relationship to certain other bodies mathematically worked out, and so on. We are exactly in a similar position in dealing with what are called occult state¬ments; namely, statements of facts as regards a partic¬ular order of existence, with some of which we can come into contact in our own world, the existence of which to some extent we can find out from the history of our own world; there are others as to which we  find ourselves unable to make discoveries, to gain first-hand knowledge; as to them, a large number of statements have been made about them by far more  highly developed persons than ourselves. It is as true of occult science as it is true of astronomy, that a large part of it is taken on trust from experts. Certain parts of it may be found out by ourselves, by our own study; other parts cannot. The conditions are similar to those in astronomy, or in any other science. We must give to the study a large amount of time. We must study along certain lines which have been verified over and over again. We must go on to first-hand knowledge, which is the best but the most laborious way of acquiring knowledge. This, however, demands, to begin with, a certain amount of faculty for the particular science. You may find, for instance, a man who could never become a great astronomer - no matter how long he studied; a man who is deficient in mathematical power could never become a really great astronomer, because the higher mathematics are wanted in much of the astro¬nomical study. If a man is by nature very stupid in that science, he could never become a great astro¬nomer. So it is also with occult study. There are a number of persons who have not got the faculty to begin with. It depends upon their past, upon the line of evolution along which they have come. Pro¬gress depends upon whether they have the faculty, how much time they are ready to give to the study, how far they are conforming to the rules laid down by experts for beginners in the study, and so on. But admitting that there is a great difference between the reception given to occult science and the reception given to astronomical statements made by experts, everybody, practically every educated person, is willing to receive the testimony of the greatest astronomers to facts which they are themselves unable to observe or to verify. It is not a matter of life and death if they are wrong. But when you come to deal with statements of occult science, some of which you find in the great Scriptures of the world, some of which you find in the ancient histories of the world, there is much unfair scepticism in modern thinkers. Histories are thrown aside as legendary and mythical. Scriptures are thrown aside as superstition, though they contain the ideas of ancient peoples, much more learned than ourselves. Hence the difficulty of Occultism in justi¬fying itself; a man must take it just on the lines I have put to you as to astronomical science. But the man of the day is ready to receive science which are based on apparatus. Where people make very elaborate apparatus, such as telescopes, spectroscopes, all kinds of things of extraordinary fineness and delicacy, they appeal to the mind of the day, especially in the West; they for the moment are most advanced, it is said, in ordinary sciences. That is the way the mind works. It looks out to the objects and builds up its theories by observation, comparison, classification, and so on. Anything that goes along that line easily justifies itself to the ordinary modern mind. They do not challenge. Occultism works in a different way. It works by the development of new organs which are within the man, instead of by the manufacture of apparatus which is outside the man. Now the development of the inner senses, the inner powers of observation, can only be done under certain rules, rules which affect the body and the conduct of the man. It is much easier to buy a telescope and look at the moon through it, than it is to develop your own nature along lines to which evolution has not as yet accustomed us. There lies the difficulty of occult study. A person will be willing to submit to a discipline, will not resent it, if it is carried on in the laboratory of science, but he does resent it if it comes to him with the authority of the great Knowers of the past. It is along the line of facts thus obtained that I am going to speak to you. Therefore you must take them from that standpoint, and understand that I am not asking you to believe a thing because I say it. I am only putting before you a theory of the Government of the World which has many facts to recommend it in his¬tory and in religion, but which may be challenged by those who do not accept ancient history, who do not accept the great Scriptures of the world of religion¬ - and some which I am going to add from my own study, I will begin with that which I am unable definitely to verify. I can only put to you certain reasons for accepting it. Now broadly stated they are these. We have a solar system consisting of certain planetary bodies revolving round the central sun. These bodies are studied, and said by ordinary science to be moving under certain definite forces, under certain definite laws of nature, as we call them, which by observation have been established and re-verified over and over again. According to that scientific view, our solar system is to a certain extent a self-contained body. The central sun in a sense controls the movements of the planetary bodies which circle round it. And outside the solar system you have space, practically empty space. But science tells us there are a great many solar systems. We are only one out of a group. It tells us that the solar systems are in groups; and that we belong to a group - the whole group circling round another sun far, far, far off in the depths of space; so that we are not wholly self-contained. We are under other influences and are moving in obedience, as a whole group system, to other laws. We do not trouble much about that because we have little opportunity of observation. Any part of the argument of science there is practically an induction from certain ascertained facts. You make a theory that if there were a body exercising certain powers of attraction and repulsion, if your partic¬ular part moves in a way which is not accounted for by anything you can discover, then there must be something as yet unknown to you causing these other move¬ments which you cannot trace to any force existing within our own solar system. I know very little about that, and do not want to say anything more about it.

I come down to our own solar system; which is quite difficult enough for us. We find there the sun and the planets. We know, so far, that the sun and these planets are composed of certain kinds of matter. It has been found out by science that the constitution of the matter of every planet contains substances which we find in our own. But they are in very different conditions. One or two may be man-bearing, may have humanity developing upon them. Others obviously cannot have anything like humanity such as we know it here. These vague statements are made as all that experts are able to give even about our own solar system. When we come to the great Scriptures of the world, we find a very definite assertion that all  these forms of matter, the globes in the planetary system, are emanated from a Mighty Being who goes by the name, among Hindus, of Ishvara, as we should say in English, the Lord, the Ruler. Indeed the Being, the existence of that Being, cannot be definitely proved except along the way that I have mentioned in the beginning - the gaining of knowledge of Him by finding Him in yourselves. Religion tells us that all things around us, visible and invisible, are forms in which One Life is found. As far as our own world is concerned, the proof of that becomes more and more accessible and valuable to us. We may almost guess, looking at other human beings, that the life in each is very much the same as the life in ourselves. We all think, we all feel, we all act, we have similar passions, similar emotions, similar divisions of thought, similar faculties and capacities of the mind, and so on, differing in degree but not differing in essentials. Now science begins to tell us that there is One Life in all things that science has recognised as being alive. That has been shown very largely in our own time. Science has long recognised that the nature of life in the animal is the same as the nature of life in the man. It has been recognised in the West only very lately that the life in the vegetable again differs in degree, but not in kind. That wonderful discovery is due, as you know, to an Indian, Sir Jagadish Chandra Bose, once a professor in the Calcutta University, groping after truth, and guided in his research by the Scriptures of the Hindus. Never forget that Jagadish Chandra Bose asserted this in his first great lecture in London on the life in plants, that it was identical with the life in animals and in man-he asserted it there in the face of the Royal Society; in the face of all the materialistic thinkers of England and through them of Europe, and he concluded that famous lecture with the sentence that he was only proving what his ancestors had sung on the banks of Ganga. That is literally true. There is One Life and people call it by many names. Over and over again in the Upanishads and in all that great literature of India, that profound truth is stated without hesitancy, without doubt, without questioning. It is so. Such is the language of the books. One great com¬mentator on the Vedas, Sayana, as you know, put this very thing about the One Life; he said: the One Life  manifests in the mineral as sat, existence, and the mineral shows out that much of the One Life. The same One Life manifests in the vegetable, and there it manifests as ichchha, desire. In the animal the  same One Life shows out much more strongly as ichchha and also as chit, thought; but the whole shows itself forth in man, who sees before and after and becomes self conscious. That has been there for hundreds of years, for centuries, for millennia, but not put in the scientific form that suits scientists of the twentieth century. Based on that, following that direction, accepting that great truth from the past Rshis, Jagadish Chandra Bose went to work and proved it on the physical plane, showed it by physical apparatus, showed experiments that demonstrated it beyond the possibility of doubt. It was not accepted at first; he was not believed. The world of science of the West was not prepared to say that an Indian scientist, moving on the lines of his own great Scriptures, had proved a thing that none of them had discovered, much less proved. But the day of his triumph arrived. His facts were accepted. His conclusions were shown to be true. As you know he is now a Fellow of the Royal Society - the highest recognition of scientific genius, that England has to give. That grew out of the Scriptures. These facts we may now take as scientifically proved, but it is not yet sufficiently worked out in minerals. Only a beginning of truth is there indicated. In the minerals, fatigue is found. When the mineral rests; the fatigue disappears. Your machine gets tired. The workman will tell you so. It does not want mending, it only wants rest. Then it recovers its elasticity and goes on again. The proof that it has life, and not only what they would call lifeless reaction, is not yet complete. Personally I am prepared to take it from the old teachings, and also from my own knowledge of the evolution of mineral life.

So far you are dealing with very large questions. As to the sun there is much discussion going on. Does the sun lose or gain energy? Does it lose it, by giving out continual heat to other things, or is that recuperated by things that fall upon the sun, and so build it up faster than it decays? We are ready to accept tem¬porarily the theory adopted by the astronomers on that. I believe the sun is the garment of a Great Being, is a centre of Life, a mighty Self-Conscious Life. So do Hindus. Generally Narayana is spoken of as the great Being in the Sun. The Sun in that sense is the manifestation, the body, of the Ishvara of the system. You find in Theosophical teachings, which go along the lines of these ancient faiths, the term Logos (Word) is used for the Deity, the Ishvara of the system. Many Theosophists, who have studied, accept this view regarding the Sun of our system as the body of our Logos, Ishvara, but no stress is laid on it, nor is it often mentioned. We speak sometimes of the Solar Logos, making that distinction, because we believe, as the Hindus believe, that there are many Ishvaras of higher and higher rank, culminating in One. Remember how the Bhagavata speaks about that, of the great ranks of Ishvaras rising one above the other. We confine ourselves for all practical purposes to the Ishvara of our own system, and, as you know, the great mantra of Gayatri is an appeal to God in the Sun. That is the reason, of course, why, in so many religions, people turn to the East in their prayers. It is not at all peculiar to the Hindus, the turning to the rising sun, worshipping, not the outer body as a sun, but God in the Sun. Everything in our solar system depends upon the Sun’s Life, heat and light. It is the fount of all the energy by which the solar system exists, and has in it the unfathomable energy of the Divine.

When you come to ask how the solar system originated, you will find that the occult teaching goes somewhat beyond the verbal teaching of the sacred books. Some of these use the word which signifies Ichchha, Desire. Sometimes you find the word Breath, Prana, which is a very accurate term. The Highest Ishvara emanates the root of matter. The Ishvara of our solar system working on what science calls that which is before the nebula, Ether, the Ether of Space, isolates a portion of that by a Ring He makes round it, and within that Ring-enclosed space our solar system is formed, His Breath going into this Ether forms the primary bubbles - there are no better words to express the action - and out of these the atoms of the solar system are formed by aggregation. I am only stating that fact because it has to some extent been verified by observation; that aggregations, which are pre-atomic aggregations, of these bubbles exist. We need not go further into it.
Who is it who, gathering up the material brought into existence by the Life-Breath of the Logos, the Life-Breath of Ishvara, builds it into aggregations? Primarily again the action of Ishvara Himself, in the Aspect of Brahma.

Now we come to the division of the divine Life into three great forms of manifestation, and it is Brahma who, taking this rough material, shapes it by several stages, which we call sub-planes, into what ultimately become chemical atoms. We come now quite down to our own world. After an immense amount of formed material is thus brought into existence by the thought of Brahma, we say that the Creative Activity is at work. Then there comes another great wave of Life which shapes the atoms into forms, not merely molecular forms, but forms like minerals, like vegetables, like animals, like savage, mindless men. All that goes on through ages, that building of the planes and their inhabitants by Those mentioned in the rough outline printed on the first page of this lecture, who are called the Builders of a Cosmos. Now these Builders of the system are the mighty Beings who come out of another, a previous Cosmos, and have been united to Ishvara, have gained moksha of the highest description, have entered as it were into the body of the Ishvara Himself, and become one with Him. All the first Builders of a Cosmos are those great and mighty Devas, who are brought over by the Ishvara of the Cosmos as Builders of His worlds. Here again we speak on the authority of the great Scriptures, and on other occult teachings.

I am for the moment concerned with our own solar system. Now, in the highest sense of the word, the Occult Hierarchy of the Cosmos would mean Ishvara and the great Builders of the whole system, the great Beings who rule and guide and sustain and direct the whole of our solar system. We cannot reach Them at all. We have to come down much lower. We have to come down to our own world. As soon as we come to our own world, we come to a manageable sphere of knowledge given in outline in the great books, and this is largely verifiable, by study, by those of us who have a turn of mind that way - just as we speak of a turn of mind in mathematics or geology - and who are willing to undergo the discipline which makes it possible to obtain first-hand information. So we come to the Occult Hierarchy of our own world, composed of the Rulers, the Teachers, and the Forces. You notice those triple divisions. They are related to the triple nature of Ishvara, which, in all the things which come forth from Him, appears in the life-side which animates the forms. You must always be on the look-out for that triplicity. You have it in yourself, in your own consciousness. You know very well it has three ways of working, no more, no less. You have Jnanam, Ichchha and Kriya. You have Aware¬ness, which recognises things outside itself, and evolves into Jnanam, Knowledge. Then Ichchha, Desire in the lower form, and Will, Power, in the higher. Then, Kriya, Activity. And only when these three are developed, do you find the self-conscious being. Thus he analyses his own consciousness. He finds in himself the triplicity which shows the presence of Ishvara in his own nature. That triplicity is recognised everywhere. Western science recognises it in its analysis of the mind. No one who has studied the subject can possibly deny it, whether in the ancient books or in the modern books of psychology. The West is rather more vague, because the western languages are not as adapted to the subtler forms of study as the Samskrt. You must remember that a language is built up by the thoughts of the people who use it. In the West, in dealing with the subtler side of science, they have to fall back upon other languages, and create new words for the new things they find out in psychology. So you get a long list of words which the psychologist who keeps himself level with the science of the day must know and understand. So the English language is becoming enriched. Many of the words in it are words adopted from Samskrt, and also from Greek and Latin, which are the classical languages of Europe. Let us then take what has been definitely proved ¬that there are three aspects, of life, that they exist in Ishvara or the Logos. Sat-Chit-Ananda they are called in the highest form. And in the Ishvara of a Cosmos they come out as Jnanam, Ichchha and Kriya. So also in man in a very much lower stage.

We thus come; down to our own world. Only one other point we have to notice in passing, because I spoke of only two great waves of Life - the one working on the material given by the Breath of the Logos, and the second which forms that material into the shapes of the forms which we find in our own world. The third great Life wave is that which in man, and in man alone; brings the higher and the lower together, the Spirit which is brought into direct contact with the matter of the lower sub-planes; this is the result of the third great impulse from Ishvara, in which the Spirit, which is a fragment of Himself, takes definite possession of the body through which it has to work, not only on the physical but on all the lower planes, the larger worlds within which our world exists. These are, as you know, the physical plane, the astral plane - I call it the emotional - and half of the mental plane, the worlds of the lower bodies. Then the higher mental world, or the world of the Intellect, the world of Buddhi, of self-realisation, of intuition, and that of Atma, the reproduction of the divine Spirit in ourselves, are the higher of the fivefold universe. That is the man in the perfection of his parts, the stages of his consciousness and the bodies in which they work. I need not dwell on this, but merely recall to you the well-known facts. You know the various categories of the bodies - the Sthula Sharira and the Sukshma Sharira, and then the Koshas, given in the Vedanta, the subdivisions of the bodies.

We are not concerned today with that organism of man, though you must bear it in mind, but with the existence on our globe of an Occult Hierarchy, showing out the three great groups. That Hierarchy came to us from elsewhere.

Here as I speak, I hesitate for a moment. I was going to say that I spoke from my own knowledge. But I had better explain. It is perfectly possible to develop a faculty of “looking backwards”, and to read what are called the “Occult Records” of the world far beyond ordinary history; going back to those, to that which science is beginning to call the “memory of the world”, it is beginning to recognise it as a reality that all events remain in that memory  of the world; science makes what seems at first the rather startling statement that if you could go out to a certain distance from our world to some other globe; you might there see the events which happened in our world thousands of years ago. It sounds a little startling if you happen to hear it for the first time. Sight depends on the travelling of light. But vision, as we know it, could not cross the huge spaces required. But if it could, a person on a distant globe would see events which had happened here long after they had happened. Why do you hear the sound of gun-fire an appreciable time after you see the flash, since flash and sound are simultaneous? Because sound travels more slowly than light. Light travels so swiftly that we do not appreciate the time between the gun-fire and its flash a mile or so away. Still light travels at a certain definite rate. A “light-year” is the distance in miles over which light travels during a year. Astronomical distances are so great that they are measured in light-years. Suppose you took a thousand light-years, and that you were able to see from the huge distance traversed into the state of the globe a thousand years ago, when the light left it, then looking at our world you would see what was happening a thousand years ago. To understand this you only want a little thought, a little imagination. It is quite plain and simple, if you think. The events are all there all the way along. But to see them at any point there must be an organ of vision. If you can only get that, then you can see the history of the world by, as it were, travelling back towards the world along the light-ray looking at the records in this light. That is, in effect, exactly what the Occultist does although it is not done in that way, but from a point by which the records pass like a cinematographic film. It is a clumsy analogy, but it will serve. The Occultist calls it the Akashic Record. Science groping after it says it must be there, but it cannot deal with it. Naturally. It can be dealt with only by the develop¬ment of certain faculties in man. In that way I speak of what I have “seen”. In that way I said that I knew that the Hierarchy came from elsewhere, because I have seen the coming to our world of those great Lords of Light; I am told They came from Shukra, Venus, which gave to our world the beginnings of its Occult Hierarchy. That is beyond my powers of research I saw only the arrival. There are certain traditions in some of your books which speak about the com¬ing of the great Lords. You read in them, for instance, of the four Kumaras. Where did They come from? Who were They? They came to the world from some-where. The Occult Records and Hindu books say of the great Ones that. They came from Shukra. They came to our world because our world was ready, was at a stage of the evolution of men capable of receiving that great wave of Life which made the intellect of man possible. And They came because, without guidance from higher Beings, the intellect would have gone wrong, plunged amid a world of passion and animal nature, with which it was filled, to the great destruction of the forward evolution of human beings.

Now in the Theosophical books that period of the Coming is called the middle of the Third Race. We are now in the Fifth Race, your own Root-Race. The Fourth Race, as you know, includes the Chinese, the Japanese, the Mongolians, and so on. Those belong to the Fourth Race, which exceeds the Third and Fifth in numbers. The Third Race people are dying out, save where they have intermarried with later Races. In ordinary ethnology they are spoken of as Lemurian. We use that word in the Theosophical books also. The Lemurians, the Third Race, went through the subdivisions, or sub-races, and in the middle of the evolution of that Race came the Sons of the Light, the Sons of the Fire, as They are called in some of the books. They founded the Occult Hierarchy of our world. The greatest of your Rshis belong to that Body. I just spoke of the Four Kumaras. They were of Those who originally came to our world for its helping, and who are still with us. Of Them it is that you read as living in the White Island, spoken of in your Puranas. That White Island is part of Central Asia, very carefully guarded from intrusion, but still existing. That is not the original cradle of our Race, but the nursery, as it were, in which it grew up. You remember that remarkable book of Mr. Tilak on The Arctic Home of the Aryan Race, where he came very, very near to the occult truth. The land, where the germs of the great Fifth Race were chosen for its evolution, was even before that. They were chosen by the Lord Vaivaswata Manu. On that we shall have to speak tomorrow. I only want to put before you now the great triple divisions seen in the Hierarchy. You have at first the Group of Rulers, the four Kumaras at the head of them, the Rulers of the world. They have to do with Nations, They have to do with Races, they have, to do, through the high Devas, with the configuration of the world as regards land and water, and the tremendous ca¬tastrophes and cataclysms, earthquakes and tidal waves, which change the whole surface of our world in the distribution of land and water. The times of those are their work. Therefore we give them the name Rulers. They are the true inner Rulers of our world.

Then we come to the great Group of the Teachers of mankind. In that you find all the Founders of the great religions, the Buddhas Religious, as you find the Manus in the first. We shall go more fully into that¬ - the Buddhas, the Founders of world-faiths, the Teachers. They all belong to that great Group. Then there comes the third Group which I have called here the Forces. The reason why I use that word is that each of these Groups uses a particular kind of force for its work. The Rulers use a particular kind of force, the Teachers use a particular kind of force, and the others comprise all, the remaining forces that carry on the activities of the world. The first great group of Rulers act by Will-Power. This, as I said, in the lower form is Ichchha, in the higher form, Will. Will or Power is the natural characteristic of the Rulers. It is that force, the force of the Will, by which the Rulers, the Occult Rulers, of the world work. Then when you come to the great teaching Group, there you find that they work by Jnanam, Knowledge. They, as Teachers, have the detailed knowledge of our world, so that just when a new religion is to begin, then we shall see a new type of man has been formed. When the new type is formed by the Rulers, the Teachers step in to teach that new type, and to help it to evolve. The third great Group, the Group of Kriya, Activity, which I shall simply call here the, Forces - for want of a better word perhaps - these bring about all the activities of our world, and they again are directed by a Group of great Beings, so that you may think of this Occult Government of the World as divided into three Groups according to the qualities, or the Aspects, of Ishvara Himself. The Groups are the same in their nature as you will see, or as you may see, in your Shastras; so that if you look at the names in the Hindu Shastras, you will see Mahadeva, in whom the characteristic is Ichchha (Will); then Vishnu, whose great characteristic is Jnanam (Wisdom); and then Brahma, whose great characteristic is Kriya (Action). You see how orderly the whole thing is - Ishvara at the centre of all with his triple manifestation; the copy of Saguna Brahman, the Sachchidananda Brahman, manifested in the totality of the universe. Then you come by a long descent, as it were, to the Ishvaras of systems, and there the great triplicity comes in of what you may call specialised forms, the Ishvaras there showing out the three Aspects in the three corresponding Gunas. It is the Government of a World in the system. Coming down much lower, there you will find these three again, separated for the work that is to be done. Thus we have the Rulers characterised by Will, the Teachers characterised by Wisdom, the Forces charac¬terised by Activity - all in perfect order of sequence, so that if you learn the arrangement of the inner world, you will be able to ascend step by step, and realise that the arrangement that you find in the great Scriptures of the world is the highest. There is then that in the lower, the lower being fashioned after the like¬ness of the higher, the Supreme reflecting Himself downwards and downwards, till you come to the single globe. The analogy is perfect. So it is written: “As above, so below”. We come thus to our own Occult Hierarchy, whom you think of as Rshis, the mighty Ones who appear from time to time in your Puranas and Itihasas, in the early days walking among men, consoling men, helping men, when each Race is being founded. Of course the lecture of tonight is one as to which, for most of you, verification is impos¬sible, but the sketch of these things is necessary in order that you may have a big picture, and then come down through that picture to our own little spot of world - quite an insignificant place in the enormous universe. Here we should be able to study more closely. Here we should be able to find out really what is going on, the Forces behind those who are apparently the rulers, the teachers and the actor in our world, the true Inner Government of the World, by Power, by Wisdom, by Activity, as manifested in the Occult Hierarchy of our world, with the Four Kumaras at its head.



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