Blavatsky Collected Writings Volume 12 Page 654

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Members of the E.S.T. receiving this Instruction will understand from its receipt that they have passed out of the First Probationary Degree of the E. S. T. into the Second Probationary Degree. The students in the Second Degree must not discuss this Instruction with anyone still in the First Degree; they must remain absolutely silent upon it, except to such persons as may be notified to them as belonging to the Second or Third Degrees by Annie Besant or William Q. Judge. Any breach of this rule of silence will be an absolute bar to receiving any further Instructions.


The matter contained in this Instruction was delivered orally by H.P.B. in her Group Teaching of members of the Third Degree. It was thus given with a view of its being transmitted to members of the Second Degree, and was carefully written down by the students at the time, one of the number reporting it in shorthand. All the notes thus taken were compared, and a fair copy was made by the two Secretaries, Annie Besant and George R. S. Mead. This copy was again checked by questioning H.P.B. on any point that seemed obscure. By her direction the matter was rearranged under headings as given below. The information is often given in an extremely condensed form, and the student will need to meditate carefully over every sentence if he is not to miss the knowledge contained therein.

I have added within square brackets, so as to distinguish them from the text, some notes elucidating statements which seemed obscure, or adding interesting information: these are drawn from facts given by H.P.B. in conversation, or in answer to questions, but did not form part of the distinct teaching, written down at the time from her lips.

Chief Secretary of the Inner Group and Recorder of the Teachings.


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Strictly Private and Confidential

Not the Property of Any Member, and to be Returned on Demand to the Agent of the Heads of the E.S.T.





To give the merest outline of the States of Consciousness is the most difficult thing in the world, since the Universe is embodied Consciousness, and a knowledge of the States of Consciousness means a knowledge of the Planes of the Universe, and of all correspondences in the Kosmos, the Solar System and Man.

[NOTE:––“Kosmos” (spelt with a K) was used by H.P.B. in the sense of the Manvantaric manifestation as a whole; she often applies the adjective “cosmic” (with a c) to phenomena of the Solar System, and speaks of that system as the Cosmos, and the Universe. Let the student note the passage in The Secret Doctrine, Vol. I, p. 13: “The reader has to bear in mind,” etc,; and pp. 20, 21: “The history of cosmic evolution,” etc. Unfortunately, this distinction was constantly missed by proofreaders, and we meet the term Kosmos applied to the solar systems, where she would have written cosmos. Here we shall follow her rule, often expressed, and use the word KOSMOS only for the Whole. Macrocosmos will apply to the solar system, including its seven planes. The term Prakriti will cover the objective plane of the solar system,


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with its subdivisions. The term Microcosmos will be applied to man. The student is advised to clearly realize and bear in mind this nomenclature, as H.P.B. laid great stress on the definite adoption of terms, and their systematic use. At the best, the study of the States of Consciousness is exceedingly difficult, and its successful pursuit becomes impossible unless the nomenclature, at least, is clear.]



Figure A, Macrocosmic.––The student will observe that the study of the States of Consciousness is confined to Consciousness as manifesting in the solar system. Any attempt to figure Consciousness in KOSMOS would have deceived the student by inducing him to believe that such Kosmic Consciousness could be explained, whereas the whole of even the lowest plane of Kosmos transcends the highest Adept on earth. As to its explanation in material words, as well try to confine infinitude in a nutshell. One thing alone we know of Kosmic Consciousness, viz. that it is absolutely outside all terms of earth consciousness.
Figure A, therefore, must be taken to represent the seven planes of Consciousness in the solar system only. These may be figured as six within a seventh, which synthesizes all. Now it must always be borne in mind that diagrams can only show one aspect of a truth, and that they are only meant to help the student to an apprehension of the aspect symbolized. Let us remember we are dealing with Forces and States of Consciousness, and not with water-tight compartments. Thus Fohat, placed on the fourth plane, is, in reality, everywhere; it runs like a thread through all, and has its own seven divisions, each with its seven subdivisions; the Fohatic consciousness is a State of Consciousness everywhere: when consciousness passes into the Fohatic state it is “on the Fohatic plane.” Jîva, or the Jîvic State of Consciousness, is everywhere also, and so with all the other states. Consciousness is one: it has seven states, or aspects, or planes, and each of these is everywhere. The highest, seventh, or synthesizing, state is that of the Auric Envelope,* the Hiranyagarbha, containing the Âtmic elements and the Karma of the Manifesting Macrocosm.
This diagram represents the type of the solar system.
The three higher divisions of this plane are inconceivable to us, and are only reached by the highest Adept in Samâdhi. Esoterically, Samâdhi

* The student is reminded of the injunction to secrecy as to the Auric Egg. It has been broken by some Esotericists.


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* The Fourth Globe of every Planetary Chain.


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is the highest state on earth attainable while in the body. Beyond that the Initiate must become a Nirmânakâya. The highest Adept begins his Samâdhi on the fourth macrocosmic plane, and cannot pass out of the solar system. When such an Adept begins his Samâdhi, he is on a par with some of the Dhyâni-Chohans, but transcends them as he rises to the seventh plane, Nirvâna.
The “SILENT WATCHER” [see The Secret Doctrine, Vol. I, pp. 207, 208] is on the fourth plane.
The Pratyeka-Buddha, the Buddha of Selfishness*––called because of this spiritual selfishness “the rhinoceros,” the solitary animal––can never pass beyond the third plane, that of Jîva. Such a one has conquered, indeed, his material desires, but he has not yet freed himself from his mental and spiritual longings. It is the Buddha of Compassion only that can transcend this third macrocosmic plane.
Figure B, Prâkritic.––Prakriti, the lowest plane of macrocosmic consciousness, represents the “body” of the solar systems, with its own seven subdivisions, or the seven states of Prâkritic consciousness, each corresponding to a state of the macrocosmic consciousness.
[NOTE.––H.P.B. did not explain Prâkritic consciousness. She left the student to work it out by correspondences with the macrocosmic and microcosmic, merely pointing out that the Prâkritic consciousness, or that on the objective plane of the solar systems––objective as regards the systems, i.e., densest as to material––had its own seven stages, each such sub-stage forming one of the forty-nine sub-stages of the solar system. It must be remembered that the word “objective” is correlative to the observer; the Prâkritic astral plane is objective to clairvoyants and some animals; it needs development beyond that normal in the Fifth Race to reach the higher Prâkritic planes as objective; only the Adept can pass into the macrocosmic planes beyond the Prâkritic.]
Figure C, Microcosmic or Human.––This figure represents the human consciousness, which may be on any of the planes or sub-planes of Prakriti. The names represent the correspondences of the human principles, so called, with the Prâkritic and the macrocosmic States of Consciousness. The numbers in all the figures are added merely for convenience or reference, and for no other reason, as has been explained already so many times.
Special attention should be paid to the triangle with its apex in the Mânasic state and its base in the Kâma-Mânasic state. The apex is Manas, the Higher Ego, the Christos. This, on sending out its Ray, becomes “crucified between two thieves.” For the personal Ray is

* See The Voice of the Silence, Fragment II, p. 43, and Note 38.


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partly pure, partly impure, dragged down by Kâma on the one side and reaching up towards the Higher Manas on the other. It is the double-faced entity. One “thief,” the pure part of the Lower Manas, repents and goes with the Christos to Paradise, i.e., becomes the aroma of the personality, the consciousness of the Devachanic entity. The other, the impure part, clings to Kâma, and is dissipated with it in Kâma-Loka. Thus the reincarnating Ray may be separated, for convenience, into two portions; the lower Kâmic Ego is dissipated in Kâma-Loka; the Mânasic part accomplishes its cycle and returns to the Higher Ego. It is, in reality, this Higher Ego which is, so to speak, punished, which suffers, and this is the true crucifixion of the Christos, the most abstruse, but yet the most important mystery of Occultism, whereof more will be said hereafter.
Relating the lowest plane of Prakriti, or the terrestrial, to the human consciousness, we can divide it into seven sub-planes. To these the following names have been given:

7th sub-plane Âtmic Consciousness that of the Para-Ego.
6th sub-plane Buddhic Consciousness that of the Inner Ego.
5th sub-plane Mânasic Consciousness that of the Higher or Individual Ego.
4th sub-plane Kâma-Mânasic Consciousness that of the Personal Ego or Higher Psychic.
3rd sub-plane Prânic-Kâmic Consciousness or Psychic.
2nd sub-plane Astral Consciousness  
1st sub-plane Objective Consciousness  

The sub planes are again divisible each into seven, once again making up the forty-nine.
[NOTE.––The term Para-Ego was adopted by H.P.B., as descriptive of the seventh sub-plane of the lowest Prakriti, to signify that that plane was beyond individuality. She pointed out that “Âtma-Buddhi, on this Prâkritic plane, act more in the atoms of the body, and in such organisms as bacilli and microbes than in man as a whole.” Hence they are well-nigh senseless on this plane, what we call consciousness being very dull. “The Atom,” she said on another occasion, “is the Âtman of the lowest Prakriti.”]

We will now proceed to discuss the nature of the septenary consciousness on the two lowest planes of Prakriti, the Objective and the Astral, viz. the seven States of Consciousness on the Objective Terrestrial plane, that of globe D [in the diagram on p. 200, Vol. I of The Secret Doctrine]; and also the seven States of Consciousness on the Astral Prâkritic plane. First of all we must remember that perceptive life proper begins on the Astral sub-plane on every plane. It is not the physical, or objective, molecules which see, hear, etc.




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[NOTE.––The centres of sensation, or of internal action, that is of seeing, hearing, smelling, etc.––called Indriyas in Eastern systems––are located in the astral man, the physical molecules being only the necessary material agents for receiving impulses from without and transmitting them to the centres. The organs of action, or Karmendriyas (see Diagram V) are Indriyas, or centres acquired for Karma (external action, in this case). The true centres, which impel to action, are in the astral man, i.e., belong to Astral Consciousness.]

Self-consciousness proper only begins between Kâma and Manas.


The first of the seven sub-planes of the First, or Lowest, Prâkritic plane.
1. Objective Sensuous Consciousness.––The consciousness that pertains to the five physical senses in man and rules in animals, birds, fishes, some insects, etc. Here are the “Lives”; their consciousness is in Âtma-Buddhi; they are entirely without Manas.
2. Astral Instinctual Consciousness.––The consciousness of sensitive plants, of ants, spiders, and some night-flies (Indian), but not of bees. Among other animals the non-mammalian vertebrates are without this consciousness, but the placental mammals have all the potentialities of human consciousness, though of course dormant, or latent, at present. On this plane is the consciousness of idiots. The common phrase, “he has lost his mind,” is an occult truth; for when, through fright or other cause, the lower mind becomes paralyzed, then the consciousness acts on the astral plane. The study of lunacy will throw much light on this point. This may well be called the “nerve plane.” It is cognized by our “nervous senses,” of which, as yet, modern physiology knows nothing. Hence it is that a clairvoyant can read with the eyes bandaged, with the tips of the fingers, the pit of the stomach, etc. This consciousness is greatly developed in the deaf and dumb. On this plane everything is reversed, reflected upside down.
3. Kâma-Prânic, or Physiological-Emotional Consciousness.––This is the general life-consciousness which belongs to the objective world, even to the stone; for if the stones were not living they could not decay, crumble away, or emit a spark. Affinity between chemical elements is a manifestation of this, Kâma-Prânic consciousness. To this plane, also, belong the life-preservative instincts, as for instance that which prevents a kitten going into the water and getting drowned.
[A stone could not crumble unless there was life throughout it; for the crumbling is not due only to friction by water, air, etc., or the


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action of frost, but to the fact that every particle in the stone is in a state of active vibration, performing rhythmical motions, not in a state of inertia. These life-waves, pulsing in the stone, throw its molecules apart, thus enabling foreign matters and influences to enter between them, force them farther apart, and so cause crumbling away. Even this is not all: the vibratory action of the life itself, apart from any interference from without, tends to ultimately disrupt the combinations of molecules that make up the stone.]
4. Kâma-Mânasic, or Psychic, or Passional-Emotional Consciousness. ––In animals and idiots the instinctual consciousness on the lower planes of sensation is in this state; in man these are rationalized. For instance, if a dog is shut up in a room, it has the instinct to get out, but is unable to do so because this instinct is not sufficiently rationalized to take the means necessary for its liberation. A man at once takes in the situation, and lets himself out. The highest degrees of this Kâma-Mânasic consciousness are psychic, there being within this sub-plane, as with all others, seven degrees from the instinctual and psychic.
5. Mânasic or Mental-Emotional Consciousness.––From this plane Manas stretches up to Mahat.
6. Buddhic, or Spiritual Emotional Consciousness.––The plane of Buddhi or of the Auric Envelope. From this plane consciousness goes to the “Father in Heaven,” Âtman, reflecting all that is in the Auric Envelope. The Mânasic and Buddhic states cover the planes from the Noëtic to the Divine,* but it is impossible at this stage to define them intelligibly. Call the highest plane x if you will. You can’t understand it.


1. Objective Consciousness.––Everything seen on this plane must be reversed in translating it into terms of objective consciousness. For in. stance, numbers appear as though written backwards: 591 would appear as 195. The objective Astral corresponds in everything to the objective Terrestrial, or sensuous consciousness.
2. Astral Consciousness.––This second division corresponds to the second of the lower plane, but the objects here seen are of extreme tenuity, astralized astrals, so to say. This plane is the limit of the vision of the ordinary medium. To reach it a non-mediumistic person must be asleep, or in a trance, or under the influence of laughing-gas, or of some drug. In ordinary delirium the consciousness passes on to this plane.

* See Psychic and Noëtic Action,” Lucifer, Vol. VII, October and November, 1890. [Included in the present Volume.]


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3. Kâma-Prânic Consciousness.––This state is of an intensely vivid nature. The consciousness is on it in the delirium of high fever. In delirium tremens the drunkard passes to this plane, and may even go on to the next. Lunatics also are often in this state of consciousness, and see most terrible visions. This plane overlaps the next, the Kâma-Mânasic Consciousness.
4. Kâma-Mânasic Consciousness.––This is the worst of the Astral planes, Kâmic and terrible. Hence come the images that tempt: images of drunkards and libertines in Kâma-Loka, impelling their victims to drink and wanton; images of every lust and vice, inoculating men with the desire to commit crimes. People of weak and mediumistic natures imitate these images in a kind of monkeyish fashion, and so fall beneath their influence. Here are strewed the seeds of epidemics of vice, of cycles of disasters, and general catastrophes of all kinds that happen in groups––a series of murders, of earthquakes, of shipwrecks. In the most acute cases of delirium tremens the consciousness of the sufferer is on this plane.
5. Mânasic Consciousness.––This plane is that of premonitions in dreams, of reflections from the lower mentality, of glimpses into the past and future, the plane of things mental and not spiritual.
6. Buddhic Consciousness.––From this plane come all beautiful inspirations of art, poetry, and music, high types of dreams, flashes of genius. Here may be caught glimpses of past incarnations, although it may not be possible to locate or analyze them.
7. Auric Consciousness.––The consciousness is on this plane at the moment of death, or in exceptional visions. Here is the consciousness of the drowning man when he remembers all the past incidents of his life in a flash. The memory of this consciousness must be stored in the heart, “the seat of Buddhi.” Then it will remain there, but impressions from this Âtmic plane cannot be made on the physical brain.
These two Prâkritic planes are the only two used in Ha˜ha-Yoga, and no Ha˜ha-Yogi can pass beyond them.


Students ought to become familiar with the correct meaning of the Sanskrit terms used in Occultism, and should learn the occult symbology. To begin with, the correct esoteric classification and names of the fourteen (7 x 2) and seven (Sapta) Lokas, as found in exoteric text-books, should be learned. The Lokas are there given in a very confused way, and the description is full of “blinds.”


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[“Blinds,” as used in exoteric text-books, have the double value of concealing occult truths from those unprepared for their reception, and of conveying information to the initiated. An Esotericist, turning to such books, can gain a mass of knowledge which lies hidden from the untrained eye. A good lesson in the use of “blinds” may be learned by a careful study and comparison of the classifications and explanations given below.]
The three following classifications of Lokas, i.e., of worlds, places or states, may be taken as illustrations.
1. The General, Exoteric, Orthodox and Tântric Category.
The second seven are reflected.
2. The Sânkhya Category, and that of some Vedântins.
There is also an eighth, Pisâcha-Loka, the adobe of ghosts, imps, etc.
3. The Vedântic, the nearest approach to the Esoteric.
Talâ-Tala (or Kara-Tala).
These Talas––Tala means place, world, sphere––are defined as follows:
A-Tala: no place.
Vi-Tala: some change for the better. This “better” is from the point of view of matter, in that more matter enters into it, i.e., matter becomes more differentiated. This is an ancient occult term.


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Su-Tala: good, excellent place.
Kara-Tala: something that can be grasped or touched (from Kara, a hand): i.e., the state in which matter becomes tangible.
Rasâ-Tala: place of taste: a place that can be sensed by one of the organs of sense.
Mahâ-Tala: exoterically, great place. But esoterically, a place including all others; subjectively and potentially including all preceding it.
Pâ-Tala: something under the feet (from Pâda, a foot). The upâdhi, or basis, of anything. The antipodes, America, etc.

Taking this Vedântic classification, and following its correspondences in States of Consciousness, we have the following:
Atala.––The Âtmic or Auric state or locality. It radiates directly from the periodical manifestation in ABSOLUTENESS, and is the first something in the Universe. Its correspondence in Kosmos is the hierarchy of non-substantial primordial beings, in a place which is no state. This hierarchy contains the primordial plane, all that was, is, and will be, from the beginning to the end of the Mahâmanvantara; all is there. This statement should not, however, be taken to imply fatality, kismet: the latter is contrary to all the teachings of Occultism. Here are the hierarchies of the Dhyâni-Buddhas. Their state is that of Para-Samâdhi, of the Dharmakâya; a state where no progress is possible. The entities there may be said to be crystallized in purity, in homogeneity.
Vitala.––Here are the hierarchies of the celestial Buddhas or Bodhisattwas, who are said to emanate from the seven Dhyâni-Buddhas. It is related on earth to Samâdhi, to the Buddhic consciousness in man. No Adept, save one, can be higher than this and live: if he passes into the Âtmic or Dharmakâya state (Alaya) he can return to earth no more. These two states are purely hyper-metaphysical.
Sutala.––A differentiated state corresponding on earth with the Higher Manas, and therefore with Śabda (Sound), the Logos, our Higher Ego; and also to the Mânushya-Buddha state, like that of Gautama on earth. This is the third stage of Samâdhi (which is septenary). Here belong the hierarchies of the Kumâras––the Agnishwâttas, etc.
Karatala.––A state that corresponds with Sparúa (touch) and to the hierarchies of ethereal semi-objective Dhyâni Chohans of the astral nature of the Mânasa-Manas––or the pure Ray of Manas, that is, of the Lower Manas before it is mixed with Kâma (as in the young child). They are called Sparúa-Devas, the Devas endowed with touch. (These hierarchies are progressive; the first have one sense; the second two, and


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so on to seven, each containing all the senses potentially but not yet developed. Sparœa would be better rendered by affinity, contact.)
Rasâtala, or Rûpatala.––(Rasâtala is a blind within a blind, for Rasa, taste, belongs to the next Tala). This state corresponds to the hierarchies of Rupa or Sight Devas, possessed of three senses––sight, hearing and touch. These are Kâma-Mânasic entities, and the highest elementals. With the Rosicrucians, the Sylphs and Undines. It corresponds on earth with an artificial state of consciousness, such as that produced by hypnotism and drugs (morphine, etc.).
Mahâtala.––The state corresponding to the hierarchies of Rasa or Taste Devas, and including a state of consciousness embracing the lower five senses and emanations of life and being. It corresponds to Kâma and Prâna in man, and to Salamanders and Gnomes in nature.
Pâtâla.––The state that corresponds to the hierarchies of Gandha (smell) Devas; the underworld or antipodes; Myalba. The sphere of irrational animals, having no feeling save that of self-preservation and gratification of the senses; also of intensely selfish human beings, waking or sleeping. This is why Nârada is said to have visited Pâtâla when he was cursed to be reborn. He reported that life there was very pleasant for those “who had never left their birth-place”; they were very happy. It is the earthly state and corresponds with the sense of smell. Here are also animal dugpas, elementals of animals, and nature spirits.
Relating these Talas to the senses of man, we have:
Atala.––Auric, Âtmic, Alayic, sense of taste. One of full potentiality, but not of activity.
Vitala.––Buddhic; the sense of being one with the Universe, the impossibility of imaging oneself apart from it.
[A student here asked H.P.B. why the term Alayic should be given to the Âtmic instead of to the Buddhic state. ANS.––These classifications are not hard and fast divisions. A term may change places accordingly as the classification is exoteric, esoteric, or practical. As the student advances, he should endeavour to bring all things down to States of Consciousness. Buddhi is one and indivisible. It is a feeling within, absolutely inexpressible in words. All classification breaks down in an attempt to explain it.]
Sutala.––Śabdic, sense of hearing.
Karatala.––Sparœic, sense of touch.
Rasâtala, or Rûpatala.––The state of feeling oneself a body and perceiving it (rûpa––form).
Mahâtala.––Sense of taste.
Gandhic.––Sense of smell.


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Each and all of these Talas correspond esoterically both to the cosmic and Dhyâni-Chohanic Hierarchies and to the Human States of Consciousness with their forty-nine subdivisions. Each corresponds with and is transformed into five (exoterically) and seven (esoterically) states or Tattvas, for which there are no definite names. These Tattvas transform themselves into the whole universe. The seven Lokas or Talas by reflection become fourteen: above, below; within, without; subjective, objective; pure, impure; positive, negative; and so on.
[“Pairs of opposites” making up the universe.]
In order to understand how the Lokas and Talas correspond to the forty-nine fires of Human Consciousness it is necessary to classify these states into four main divisions: (1) Tanmâtras, or Rudiments; (2) Bhutas, or Elements; (3) Jñânendriyas, or organs of sense; (4) Karmendriyas, or organs of action.
All the cosmic and anthropic states and senses have their correspondences with our organs of sensation, or Jñânendriyas, the rudimentary for receiving knowledge through direct contact, as sight, hearing, etc. These are the faculties of Śarîra, through Netra (eyes), nose, speech, etc. They correspond also with the organs of action, Karmendriyas, hands, feet, etc.
Exoterically, then, we have five subdivisions of each of these four main divisions, or twenty, called facultative. To these are added five Buddhic, making twenty-five in all. Exoterically, Buddhi is said to perceive, and so its perceptions are added to the others. Esoterically, Buddhi reaches perception only through the Higher Manas, so only the twenty facultative are reckoned in the esoteric classification. But each of these twenty exists as a positive and a negative state, thus making forty in all. Further, there are two subjective states, answering to each division, hence eight in all. These, being subjective, cannot be doubled. Thus we reach 40 + 8 = 48 “cognitions of Buddhi.” These, with Mâyâ, which includes them all, make 49. Once that you have reached the cognition of Mâyâ, you are an Adept.
To summarize:

5 positive + 5 negative Tanmâtras + 2 subjective.
5 positive + 5 negative Bhûtas + 2 subjective.
5 positive + 5 negative Jñânendriyas + 2 subjective.
5 positive + 5 negative Karmendriyas + 2 subjective.
======= ================== =========
20 positive + 20 negative + 8 aubjective

20 + 20 + 8 + Mâyâ = 49.


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In their exoteric blinds the Brahmans count 14 Lokas (the earth included), of which 7 are objective though not apparent, and 7 subjective yet fully demonstrable to the inner man. These are:

1. Bhûrloka, the earth 1. Pâtâla, the earth.
2 Bhuvarloka, space between the earth and sun (Munis). 2. Mahâtala.
3. Svarloka, the space between the sun and the polestar (Yogis) 3. Rasâtala.
4. Maharloka, the space between the earth and the uttermost limit of the solar system.* 4. Talâtala (also Karatala).
5. Janarloka, beyond the solar system, the abode of the Kumâras who do not belong to this plane. 5. Sutala.
6. Taparloka, still beyond the Mahâtmic region; the dwelling of the Vairâja deities. 6. Vitala.
7. Satyaloka, the abode of the Nirvanîs. 7. Atala.†

Now, all these 14 are planes from without within, and states of consciousness through which man can pass and must pass, once he is determined to go through the seven paths and portals of Dhyâni. One need not be disembodied for this. All this is reached on earth in one or many of the incarnations.
See the order: the four lower ones (1, 2, 3, 4) are rûpa; i.e., they are performed by the inner man with the full concurrence of the diviner portion or elements of the Lower Manas, and consciously by the personal man. The three higher states cannot be reached and remembered by the latter, unless he is a fully initiated Adept. A Ha˜ha-Yogi will never pass beyond the Maharloka psychically, and the Talâtala (double or dual plane) psycho-mentally. To become a Râja-Yogi, a Chela has

* All these spaces denote the special magnetic currents, the planes of substance and the degrees of approach that the consciousness of the Yogi or Chela makes towards assimilation with the inhabitants of the Lokas,
† These the Brahmans read from the bottom.


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to ascend to the seventh portal, the Satyaloka. For such, the MASTER YOGIS tell us, is the fruition of Ijya or “sacrifice.” When the Bhur, Bhuvar and Swarga (States) are once passed, and the consciousness of the Yogi is in Maharloka, it is the last plane and state between entire identification of the Personal and the Higher Manas.
One thing must be remembered: while the “infernal” or terrestrial states are also the seven divisions of the earth, for planes or states, as much as they are Kosmic divisions, the divine Saptaloka are purely subjective, and begin with the psychic Astral Light plane, ending with the Satya, or Jivanmukta state. These fourteen Lokas, or spheres, form the extent of the whole Brahmânda (world). The four lower are transitory with all their dwellers, and the three higher eternal, i.e., the former states, planes and subjects to these, last only a Day of Brahmâ, changing with every Kalpa; the latter endure for an Age of Brahmâ.



The double line divides the Rupa from the Arûpa states.

Elements.––Elements have a regular order, but fire pervades them all.

Lokas and Talas.––The Divine and the Infernal (terrestrial) Lokas are reflections, the one of the other, so also are the hierarchies in each, in pairs of opposites, at the two poles of the sphere. Everywhere are such opposites––good and evil, light and darkness, male and female.


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[The student should carefully note the correspondences between the Lokas and Talas, i.e., as between Maharloka and Talâtala. Also the antithesis between higher and lower in the divine and infernal categories must be kept in mind; numbers are used to show correspondences, but only for this purpose; from Bhûrloka to Satyaloka the Chela is spiritually rising higher and higher; from Pâtâla to Atala the man is spiritually sinking lower and lower. The names of the Talas are the same as in the exoteric categories given above, but the esoteric meanings attached to them are wholly different. Let the student study side by side the exoteric “blinds” and the esoteric truths, and he will gain many hints on the reading of exoteric works in general.]

The Lokas and Talas represent planes of consciousness on this earth, through some of which all men must pass, and through all of which the Chela must pass on his way to Adeptship. Everyone passes through the lower Lokas, but not necessarily through the corresponding Talas. There are two poles in everything, seven states within every state. The Brahmins and Buddhists regard the Talas as hells, but the word should be taken figuratively. We are in hell whenever we suffer, are in misery, misfortune, and so on. The lower you go in the Talas the more intellectual you become and the less spiritual. You may be a morally good man but not spiritual. Intellect may remain very closely allied with Kâma. A man may be in one of the Lokas, i.e., on the plane of consciousness represented by that Loka, and may visit one or all the Talas, his condition in these depending on the Loka to which he belongs. Thus a man in Bhûrloka only may pass into the Talas, and may go to the devil. If he dwells in Bhuvarloka, he may visit the Talas and cannot become as bad. If he has reached the Satya state, he can go into any Tala without danger; buoyed up by his own purity he can never be engulfed. The Talas are the brain-intellect states, whereas the Lokas––or more accurately the three higher––are spiritual. Thus a Chela might be between Maharloka and Janarloka when spirituality was uppermost in him; between Talâtala and Sutala when intellectuality was supreme.

The consciousness cannot be entirely on two planes, in two Lokas, at once. The higher and lower states are not wholly incompatible, but if you are on the higher you will woolgather on the lower. In order to remember the higher state on returning to the lower, the memory must be carried upwards to the higher. An Adept may apparently enjoy a dual consciousness; when he desires not to see he can abstract himself;


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he may be in a higher state and yet return answers to questions addressed to him. But in this instance, he will momentarily return to the material plane, shooting up again to the higher. This is his only salvation under adverse conditions.
The student who is not naturally psychic should fix the fourfold consciousness on a higher plane and nail it there. Let him make a bundle of the four lower, and pin them to a higher state. He should centre on this higher, trying not to permit the body and intellect to draw him down and carry him away;* play ducks and drakes with the body, eating, drinking and sleeping, but living always in the ideal. Vacillating people drift from one state of consciousness to another, without self-direction or control.
[The student must not put on this the gloss that bodily vices, passions, etc., are of no importance. H.P.B. on many occasions denounced this gloss as most mischievous and as being totally opposed to Occultism. Purity is essential, as a first step, and remains essential throughout, if dugpaship is to be avoided. But the body is to be treated with indifference, its tastes disregarded and even opposed, until their voices are no longer heard as a distracting element.]


[For Lokas, etc., not mentioned hereunder, see diagram.]
Bhûrloka.––Bhûrloka is the waking state in which we normally live; it is the state in which also animals are, when they sense food, a danger, etc. It begins with the Lower Manas. Animals do not feel as do men. The dog thinks more of his master being angry than he does of the actual pain of the lash. The animal does not suffer in memory and imagination, feeling past and future as well as actual present pain, as does man.
Svarloka.––To be in Svarloka is to be completely abstracted on this plane, leaving only instinct to work, so that on the material plane you would behave as an animal. Yogis are known who have become crystallized in this state, and then they have to be nourished by others. A Yogi near Allâhâbâd has been for fifty-three years sitting on a stone, his Chelas plunge him into the river every night and then replace him. During the day his consciousness returns to Bhûrloka, and he talks and teaches. Another Yogi was found on an island near Calcutta, round whose limbs the roots of the trees had grown. He was cut out, and in the endeavour to awaken him so many outrages were inflicted on him that he died.

* [“Having fixed his mind at rest in the true Self, he should think of nothing else. To whatsoever object the inconstant mind goeth out he should subdue it, bring it back, and place it upon the Spirit.”––Bhagavad-Gîtâ, chap. VI, 25-26]


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Rasâtala.––Mother-love, as an instinct, is between Rasâtala and Talâtala.
Vitala.––Vitala represents a sublime as well as an infernal state. That state which for the mortal is a complete separation of the Ego from the personality is for a Buddha a mere temporary separation. For the Buddha it is a cosmic state.


“2.”––The elementals in the Astral Light are reflections. Everything on earth is reflected there. It is from these that photographs are sometimes obtained through mediums. The mediums unconsciously produce them as forms. The Adepts produce them consciously through Kriyâúakti, bringing them down by a process that may be compared to the focussing of rays of light by a burning glass.
“6.”––The Vairâjas belong to, are the fiery Egos of, other Manvantaras. They have already been purified in the fire of passions. It is they who refused to create. They have reached the Seventh Portal and have refused Nirvâna, remaining for succeeding Manvantaras.


Body, Astral, Kâma, Lower Manas, Higher Manas, Buddhi, and Âtmic Aura or Auric Egg, are given as the principles. Life is a Universal Kosmic Principle, and no more than Âtman does it belong to individuals. Prâna and the Auric Envelope are essentially the same, and again as Jîva it is the same as the Universal Deity. The seven steps of Antaskarana correspond with the Lokas.


Touch and Taste have no order. Every sense pervades every other, there being really only one sense acting through different organs of sensation. All senses are but differentiations of the one sense-consciousness. Hence we can feel colours and see sounds. There is no general order; that sense which is most developed being the first for that person.


[A question was asked why Blue, the colour of the Auric Envelope, should be given in the diagram as corresponding with the earth. H.P.B. only said in reply that Blue was a colour by itself, a primary; that Indigo also was a colour, not a shade of Blue; and that Violet was a colour.] Students should learn all the correspondences given in the diagram, so that any one Loka, sense, colour, etc., should at once recall without effort all its correspondences.


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[NOTE.––Students, whether studying alone or in a group, are requested to note down difficulties that arise in the course of their study. If, after careful consideration, they find such difficulties insuperable, they are requested to write them down carefully and plainly, in an intelligible form, and to forward the statement to Annie Besant or William Q. Judge, according to the country in which they reside. Such difficulty will, if possible, be solved, and the questions and answers forwarded to all Members of the Second Degree before the next Instruction goes out.]
LONDON, July, 1891.


Printed on the H. P. B. Press, London, and the Aryan Press, New York.