Blavatsky Collected Writings Volume 12 Page 691




The study of Consciousness has further to be pursued. We must therefore learn to understand more fully the Septenary Constitution of Man, and the workings of consciousness in every part thereof.
The student will, in this Instruction, address himself to the understanding of the Lower Quaternary, as defined in Diagram V, and to the workings of consciousness as manifested through that Lower Quaternary. The study of the Higher Triad pertains to further Instructions, and for the understanding of the Higher Triad it is needful that the Lower Quaternary shall be in some measure understood. And first let the student clearly realize that he cannot see things spiritual with the eyes of the flesh, and that in studying even the Body he must use the eyes of the Spiritual Intelligence, else will he fail and his study will be fruitless. For growth is from within outwards, and always the inner remains the more perfect. Even the development of a physical sense is always preceded by a mental feeling, which proceeds to evolve a physical sense. As said (p. 672) all senses are but differentiations of the one sense-consciousness, and become so differentiated on the Astral plane, where perceptive life proper begins (p. 660); from that the differentiation is continued on to the lowest sub-plane of the Prâkritic plane, to which the physical molecules of our Bodies belong. For instance, fishes living in dark subterranean waters are blind; but if they are taken and put into a pond, in a few generations they will develop eyes. Nevertheless, in their original state, though they had no organs of physical vision, they were yet endowed with a sense of sight. Otherwise, how could they, in the darkness, have found their prey and have avoided obstacles and dangers?
The fewer the coverings over the sense-consciousness, the clearer the vision, for each envelope adds something of illusion. Only when the true discerning or discriminating power is set free is illusion overcome, and the setting free of that power is the union of Manas with Buddhi––the attainment of Adeptship. That is why in Devachan the being is still under illusion, for there the mind is the mind of one who, while in the body, had not made the union so as to complete the Trinity. It


Page 692

is only when the union is completed in the living human being that delusion is at an end. Meanwhile, with each descent to a lower plane illusion is increased.
To render active the inner vision the student must purify his whole nature, moral, mental and physical. Purity of Mind is of greater importance than purity of Body. If the Upâdhi* be not perfectly pure, it cannot preserve recollections coming from a higher state. An act may be performed to which little or no attention is paid, and it is of comparatively small importance. But if thought of, dwelt on in the Mind, the effect is a thousand times greater. Therefore it is above all things of importance that the thoughts should be kept pure. Remember that you have, so to speak, to enclose the Square within the Triangle; in other words, you must so purify the Lower Quaternary that it shall vibrate in unison with the Upper Triad.
And this is no easy task. The flesh, the Body, the human being in his material part, is, on this plane, the most difficult thing to subject. The highest Adept, put into a new Body, has to struggle against and subdue it, and finds its subjugation difficult. But this is from the automatism of the Body; the original impulses have come from thought. What we call the desires of the Body have their origin in thought. Thought arises before desire. The thought acts on the Brain, the Lower Manas being the agent; the brain acts on the bodily organs, and then desire awakens. It is not the outer stimulus that arouses the bodily organs, but the Brain, impressed by a thought. Wrong thought must therefore be slain, ere desire can be extinguished. Desire is the outcome of separateness, aiming at the satisfaction of self in Matter. Now the flesh is a thing of habit; it will repeat mechanically a good impulse or a bad one, according to the impression made on it, and will continue to repeat it. It is thus not the flesh which is the original tempter, although it may repeat automatically motions imparted to it, and so bring back temptations; in nine cases out of ten it is the Lower Manas which, by its images, leads the flesh into temptations. Then the Body automatically sets up repetitions. That is why it is not true that a man steeped in evil can, by sudden conversion, become as powerful for good as he was before for evil. His vehicle is too defiled, and he can at best but neutralize the evil, balancing up the bad Karmic causes he has set in motion, at any rate for that incarnation. You cannot take a herring-barrel

* Upâdhi means that through which a force acts. The word “vehicle” is sometimes used to convey the same idea. If “force” be regarded as acting, "matter" is the upâdhi through which it acts. Thus the Lower Manas is the upâdhi through which the Higher can work; the Linga-Śarîra is the upâdhi through which Prâna can work. The Sthûla Śarîra is the upâdhi for all the principles acting on the physical plane.


Page 693

and use it for attar of roses; the wood is too soaked through with the herring-drippings. When evil tendencies and impulses have been thoroughly impressed on the physical nature, they cannot at once be reversed. The molecules of the Body have been set in a Kâmic direction, and––though they have sufficient intelligence to discern between things on their own plane, i.e., to avoid things harmful to themselves––they cannot understand a change of direction, the impulse to which comes from a higher plane. If they are too suddenly and too violently forced into a reverse action, disease, madness or death will result.
This automatism of the Body––spoken of sometimes as habit––renders it possible for us to have both good and evil experiences in dreams. This is another reason why we should be careful of the impressions we make on the Body, especially as to impressions in which Kâma takes part. In sense dreams the Lower Manas is asleep; the animal consciousness, when a sensual tendency has been impressed on it by desire, is more easily impressed by Kâma with pictures from the Astral Light, and thus the tendency of such sense-dreams is always towards the animal. We should therefore train ourselves to awaken directly we begin a dream that tends in the sense direction; and the instantaneous rejection of impure thoughts during the period of waking consciousness will tend to set up a habit of rejection which will act automatically in sleep. In dreams, and also whenever we calmly sit for any sort of meditation, one of the first things to happen is that the Elementals begin to present to our inner eyes pictures of all sorts, and the kind of picture presented will be the result of the prior thoughts and also of the state we are in both mentally and physically. For if we are disturbed or harassed in any way in thought, the pictures will be more and more confused in fact, though sometimes having no appearance on the surface of being in confusion.
The student must therefore guard his thoughts, regarding them as the generators of action. Five minutes’ thought may undo the work of five years. And although the five years’ work may be run through more rapidly the second time than it was the first, yet time is lost.
The student will find in what follows a variety of classifications and septenary divisions. He must bear in mind that every Principle in man has its seven aspects, and every cell and organ its seven components. A Principle may have an organ in the Body specially related to it, as the Spleen to the Linga-Śarîra; none the less will the Linga-Śarîra have its correspondence in every cell in the Body, as also in other great organs. Thus the Brain has its seven divisions, each corresponding to a Principle, though it corresponds as a whole to the Psycho-Intellectual Man. In this there is no contradiction, as the elementary student at first imagines, when he finds different correspondences


Page 694

given for the same Principle, but only an exemplification of the great truth that every molecule is a mirror of the universe, every microcosm the mirror of a macrocosm.
Man’s Physical Body has its seven aspects, each aspect representing a Principle; then each of these has its seven sub-divisions, each subdivision in its turn representing a Principle; and we have the “forty-nine fires” as seen in the Sthûla-Śarîra. It is because of this intricate correspondence, carried out in every detail, that man will ultimately be able to come into contact with every realm of being in the Universe. This, and this alone, makes Râja-Yoga possible.



The Body is not a Principle in strict Esoteric parlance; it is an upadhi rather than a Principle. But it is a vehicle of consciousness, and therefore must be considered in studying Consciousness. Apart from this, it can be regarded as merely a denser aspect of the Linga-Śarîra, for the Body and the Linga-Śarîra are both on the same plane, and the Linga- Śarîra is molecular in its constitution, like the Body. The Earth and its Astral Light are as closely related to each other as the Body and its Linga-Śarîra, the Earth being the upâdhi of the Astral Light. Our plane in its lowest division is the Earth; in its highest the Astral. The terrestrial Astral Light should of course not be confounded with the universal Astral Light.


The Consciousness which is merely the animal Consciousness is made up of the Consciousness of all the cells in the Body, except those of the Heart. For the Heart is the organ of the Spiritual Consciousness; it corresponds indeed to Prâna, but only because Prâna and the Auric Envelope are essentially the same, and because again as Jîva it is the same as the Universal Deity (p. 672). The Heart represents the Higher Triad, while the Liver and Spleen represent the Quaternary, taken as a whole. The heart is the abode of the Spiritual Man, whereas the Psycho-Intellectual Man dwells in the Head with its seven gateways. It has its seven brains, the upâdhis and symbols of the seven Hierarchies, and this is the exoterically four, but esoterically seven, leaved Lotus, the “Saptaparna,” the “Cave of Buddha” with its seven compartments.
The Heart is the king of the Body, its most important organ. Even if the Head be severed from the trunk, the Heart will continue to beat


Page 695

for half an hour. If wrapped in cotton wool, and put in a warm place, the pulsation will continue for some hours.
In the Heart is a spot which is the last to die, a spot marked by a tiny violet light; that is the seat of Life, the centre of all, Brahmâ; the first spot that lives in the foetus, and the last that dies. When a Yogi is buried in a trance, it is this spot that lives, though the rest of the Body be dead, and as long as this remains alive the Yogi can be resurrected. This spot contains potentially mind, life, energy and will. During life it radiates prismatic colors, fiery and opalescent.
The Heart is the centre of the Spiritual Consciousness, as the Brain is the centre of Intellectual Consciousness. But this Spiritual Consciousness cannot be guided by a person, nor can its energy be directed by him, until he is completely united with Buddhi-Manas. Until then, it guides him––if it can. That is, makes efforts to reach him, to impress the lower Consciousness, and those efforts are helped by his growth in purity. Hence the pangs of remorse for wrong done, the prickings of Conscience, reproaching for evil, inciting to good. These come from the Heart, not from the Head. In the Heart is the only manifested God; the other two are invisible. And it is this manifested God that represents the Triad, Âtma-Buddhi-Manas.
Anyone who can reach up to, and so receive at will, the promptings of this Spiritual Consciousness must be at one with Manas––that is must have attained Adeptship. But the Higher Manas cannot directly guide the ordinary man; it must act through the Lower Manas, and thus reach the lower Consciousness. The effort however should be continually made to centre the Consciousness in the Heart, and to listen for the promptings of the Spiritual Consciousness, for though success be far off, a beginning must be made, and the path opened up.
There are three principal centres in the Body of Man: the Heart, the Head, and the Navel; the Heart, as said, is the centre of the Spiritual Consciousness; the Head is the centre of the Psychic Consciousness; and the Navel is the centre of the Kâmic Consciousness. Any two of these may be positive and negative to each other, according to the relative predominance of the Principles and therefore of their organ for manifestation on this plane. The meaning of the words positive and negative in this relation is the same as is attached to them in electrical science. The current flows from the positive to the negative, or the impression is made by the positive on the negative.
For instance: the aura of the Pineal Gland vibrates during the activity of the Consciousness in the Brain, and shows the play of the seven colors. This septenary disturbance and play of light around the Pineal Gland are reflected in the Heart, or rather in the aura of the Heart, which is negative to the brain in the ordinary man. This aura


Page 696

then vibrates and illumines the seven brains of the Heart, as that of the Pineal Gland illumines the seven centres in the Brain. If the Heart could, in its turn, become positive and impress the Brain, the spiritual Consciousness would reach the lower Consciousness. The Spiritual Consciousness is active during deep sleep, and if the “dreams” that occur in so-called dreamless sleep could be impressed by the Heart on the Brain, your Consciousness would no longer be restricted within the bounds of your personal life. If you could remember your dreams in deep sleep, you would be able to remember all your past incarnations. This is the “memory of the Heart”; and the capacity to impress it on the Brain, so that it becomes part of its Consciousness, is the “opening of the Third Eye.” In deep sleep the Third Eye opens, but it does not remain open. Still, some impressions from the Spiritual Consciousness do reach the Brain more or less, thus making the Lower Ego responsible. And there are some of these which are received through the Brain, which do not belong to our previous personal experience. In the case of the Adept, the Brain is trained to retain these impressions.
The Eastern Secret School knows each minute portion of the Heart, and has a name for each portion. It calls them by the names of the Gods, as Brahma’s Hall, Vishnu’s Hall, and so on. Each of these corresponds with a part of the Brain. The student will now begin to understand why so much stress is laid on the Heart in connection with meditation, and why so many allusions are made in old Hindu literature to the Purusha in the Heart. And so with regard to concentration the Blessed MASTER Koot Hoomi ... writes:

Your best method is to concentrate on the Master as a Living Man within you. Make His image in your heart, and a focus of concentration, so as to lose all sense of bodily existence in the one thought.

So again He says:

The great difficulty to be overcome is the registration of the knowledge of the Higher Self on the physical plane. To accomplish this, the physical Brain must be made an entire blank to all but the Higher Consciousness.

When the Brain is thus rendered a blank, an impression from the Heart may reach it and be retained; and this is what is spoken of on p. 618, with regard to the Chela, who is able to hold only parts of the knowledge gained. The above-quoted letter says:

In acquiring the power of concentration the first step is one of blankness. Then follows by degrees consciousness, and finally the passage between the two states becomes so rapid and easy as to be almost unnoticed.


Page 697

He who can do this at will has become an Adept, and can “store the knowledge he thus gains in his physical memory.”
Such is the kingly function of the Heart in the human Body, and its relation to the Brain, which, as a whole, “is the vehicle of the Lower Manas, enthroned in Kâma-Rûpa.”


The Brain, taken as an organ of Consciousness, serves as the vehicle on the objective plane of the Lower Manas, which works upon its material molecules in a way hereafter to be explained. Its subdivisions correspond to, and are the organs of, the subdivisions of the Lower Manas, its convolutions are formed by thought, the activity of the thinking Principle building up more and more complicated convolutions.

There are seven cavities in the Brain which during life are empty, in the ordinary sense of the word. In reality, they are filled with Âkâúa, each cavity having its own color, according to the state of Consciousness in which you are. (The colors are only visible, of course, to the purified vision.) These cavities are called in Occultism the “Seven Harmonies,” the scale of the Divine Harmonies, and it is in these that visions must be reflected, if they are to remain in the Brain-memory. These are the parts of the Brain which receive impressions from the Heart, and enable the memory of the Heart to be impressed on the memory of the Brain.

The fourth of these cavities is the Pituitary Body, which corresponds with Manas-Antaskarana, the bridge to the Higher Intelligence; it contains various essences. The fifth cavity is the Third Ventricle, empty during life except for pulsating light, though filled with a liquid after death. The sixth cavity is the Pineal Gland, also hollow and empty during life; the granules are precipitated after death. The Pineal Gland corresponds with Manas until it is touched by the vibrating light of Kundalinî, which proceeds from Buddhi, and then it becomes Buddhi-Manas. When Manas is united to Buddhi, or when Buddhi––and therefore Âtman also––is centred in Manas, it acts in the three higher cavities, radiating and sending forth a halo of light, and this sometimes becomes visible in the case of very holy persons. The fires are always playing round the Pineal Gland; but when Kundalinî illuminates them for a brief instant, the whole universe is seen. This is what occurs occasionally in deep sleep when the third eye opens. And such opening is good for Manas, who profits by it, even though the


Page 698

Lower Man is not then reached and therefore cannot remember. The seventh cavity is the synthesis of all, the cavity of the skull itself, as filled with Âkâúa (see Diagram V). This corresponds with the Âtmic Aura, the sacred Auric Egg.

Perception, brain perception, is located in the aura of the Pineal Gland, while the Pineal Gland itself, illuminated, corresponds with Divine Thought. The Pituitary Body is the organ per se of the psychic plane. Pure psychic vision* is caused by the molecular motion of this body, which is directly connected with the optic nerve, and thus affects the sight, and gives rise to hallucinations. Its motion may readily cause flashes of light, seen within the head, similar to those that may be obtained on pressing the eyeballs, and so causing molecular motion in the optic nerve. When molecular action is set up in the Pituitary Body these flashes are seen, and further action gives psychic vision, as similar motion in the Pineal Gland gives Spiritual Clairvoyance. Drunkenness and fever cause disorderly motion in the Pituitary Body, and so produce illusions of sight, visions, hallucinations. This body is sometimes so affected by drunkenness that it is paralyzed, and the strict forbiddance of alcoholic liquids to all students of Occultism turns on this effect which alcohol produces on the Pituitary Body and Pineal Gland.
The Pineal Gland is the focus of the spiritual, hence inorganic, sensorium. Its action has nothing to do with the circulation of the Blood, but it is concerned with the spiritual fiery emanation that proceeds from the Blood. Further: the Pineal Gland, at the upper pole of the human body, corresponds with the Uterus (in the female and its analogue in the male) at the lower pole; the peduncles of the Pineal Gland corresponding with the Fallopian Tubes of the Uterus. The Pituitary Body is only the servant of the Pineal Gland, its torch-bearer, like the servants carrying torches that run before the carriage of a princess. Man is androgyne, so far as his head is concerned.

The Corpora Quadrigemina corresponds with Kâma-Manas, bringing Kâma thus within the Mânasic division of the human brain.

Kâma itself has for its correspondence the Cerebellum, which is the centre and storehouse of forces. The Cerebellum furnishes the materials for ideation. The frontal lobes of the Cerebrum are the finishers and polishers of the materials supplied by the Cerebellum, but they cannot create these materials for themselves.

The correspondence of Kâma in the lower part of the Body is the Liver, with the Stomach.
* Ordinary clairvoyance is not the use of this organ.


Page 699

To recapitulate, we have:

Kâma corresponds with Cerebellum
Kâma-Manas corresponds with Corpora Quadrigemina
Manas-Antaskarana corresponds with Pituitary Body
Manas corresponds with Pineal Gland
Manas-Buddhi corresponds with Pineal Gland when touched by Kundalinî
Auric Egg corresponds with Cavity of skull filled with Âkâúa

Thus the Brain, the vehicle of the Lower Manas with Kâma, as said, has its subdivisions corresponding with the subdivisions, or aspects, of Manas in activity, and has also the cavities related to the heart, rendering possible the making of impressions on the physical consciousness, and by the action within these cavities rendering possible the action of Buddhi-Manas on the physical plane, and the development of Spiritual Clairvoyance.


The Liver and Stomach, as said, are the correspondences of Kâma in the trunk of the Body, and with these must be classed the Navel and the Generative Organs. The Liver is closely connected with the Spleen, as is Kâma with the Linga-Śarîra, and both these have a share in generating the blood. The Liver is the General, the Spleen the Aide-decamp. All that the Liver does not accomplish is taken up and completed by the Spleen.


The Spleen corresponds to the Linga-Śarîra, and serves as its dwelling-place, in which it lies curled up. As the Linga-Śarîra is the reservoir of life for the Body, the medium and vehicle of Prâna, the Spleen acts as the centre of Prâna in the Body, from which the life is pumped out and circulated. It is consequently a very delicate organ, though the physical Spleen is only the cover for the real Spleen.


The circulation of Life, Prâna, through the Body is by way of the Blood. It is the vital Principle in us, Prânic rather than Prâna, and is closely allied to Kâma and to the Linga-Śarîra. The essence of the Blood is Kâma, penetrated by Prâna, which is universal on this plane. When Kâma leaves the Blood it congeals. So that the Blood may be regarded as Kâma-Rûpa, the “form of Kâma” in a sense. While Kâma


Page 700

is the essence of the Blood, its red corpuscles are drops of electrical fluid, the perspiration oozing out of every cell of the various organs, and caused to exude by electrical action. They are the progeny of the Fohatic principle.
Anatomists are beginning to find out new ramifications and new modifications in the human Body, and they sometimes get very near a truth without quite getting hold of it. For instance, they are in error as to the Spleen, when they call it the manufactory of the white corpuscles of the Blood, for, as said, it is really the vehicle of the Linga-Śarîra. But these same white corpuscles––which are the Devourers, the scavengers of the human body––are oozed out of the Linga-Śarîra and are of the same essence as itself. They come from the Spleen, not because the Spleen manufactures them, but because they are oozed out of the Linga-Śarîra, which, as said, is curled up in the Spleen. They are the Sweat-Born of the Chhâyâ.
The Blood thus serves as the physical upâdhi for Kâma, Prâna, and the Linga-Śarîra, and the student will understand why it plays so large a part in the animal economy. From the Spleen––enriched by the life-elements from Prâna, the corpuscles of the Linga-Śarîra serving as the vehicle of these Prânic elements, the Devourers, that build up and destroy the human body––it travels all over the body, distributing everywhere these Prânic carriers. The red corpuscles represent the Fohatic energy in the Body, closely allied to Kâma and Prâna, while the essence of the Blood is Kâma, present in every part of the Body.


The Sympathetic Cords take their rise from a sacred spot above the Medulla oblongata, called the Trideni. From this same spot start Idâ and Pingala, an upper junction of the sympathetic and cerebro-spinal axes being thus formed.
The Sympathetic Cords are only found after a certain stage of animal evolution, and are evolving in complexity to form a second Spinal Cord. At the end of the next Round, Humanity will become once more hermaphrodite, male-female, and then there will be two Spinal Cords in the human Body. In the Seventh Race, the two will merge into the one. The sexually creative power of man is not natural, or rather was not at the beginning. It was an abnormal diversion from the course of human or divine nature, and all tends to make away with it. Man in the end of the Sixth and Seventh Races will not have sexual organs. The evolution of the physical Body corresponds to the Races, and with the evolution of the Races the Sympathetic Cords will develop into a true Spinal Cord, the two Cords growing together and so forming one. We are returning up the arc, with self-consciousness added. The Sixth


Page 701

Race will correspond to the “Pudding Bags,” the First Root-Race, but will have the perfection of form with the highest intelligence and spirituality.
The Sympathetic System is connected with the Linga-Śarîra, Prâna and Kâma, more than with Manas. It is played on by the Tântrikas, who call it Śiva’s Vînâ (lute), or Kâlî’s Vînâ, and is used in Ha˜ha-Yoga. Its most important plexus, the Solar, is the brain of the stomach, and emotions are felt there, owing to the correspondence with Kâma. So psychic clairvoyant perception often acts at this region, as in the reading of letters, psychometrizing substances, etc.


The Spinal Column is called Brahmadanda, the rod or stick of Brahmâ, and it is this which is symbolized by the bamboo rod carried by ascetics, the seven-knotted wand of the Yogi. The seven knots are the seven Nâdîs along the spinal cord. The Yogis beyond the Himâlayas, who assemble regularly at Lake Mânasasarovara carry a triple-knotted bamboo stick and are called Tridandas. The three knots signify the three vital airs that play in the Spinal Column, symbolized also in the triple Brâhmanical thread. The triple cord has other meanings, it may be observed in passing; as, for instance, it symbolizes the three initiations of a Brâhmana. The first takes place at birth when he receives his mystery name––that a Hindu would die rather than reveal––from the family astrologer, who is supposed to have received it from the Devas. The child is thus said to be initiated by the Devas. The second initiation occurs when he is seven years old, and he then receives his thread. The third is the initiation into his caste, a ceremony that is performed when he is eleven or twelve years of age. But this by the way.
The seven physical Nâdîs extend up the vertebral column from the sacrum to the atlas. The superphysical are within the head, and of these the fourth is the Pituitary Body. The physical Nâdîs correspond to regions of the Spinal Cord known to anatomists. There are six or seven Nâdîs, or plexuses, along the Spinal Cord; but the term “Nâdîs” is not technical; it is used as descriptive of any knot, centre, ganglion, or similar body. The Sacred Nâdîs are those that are situated above Sushumna, along its length. Six of these are known to Science, while the seventh, near the atlas, is unknown. Even the Târaka Râja-Yogis speak only of six, and will not mention the sacred seventh.
Sushumna is the central passage, Idâ being on the left side of the Cord, and Pingala on the right. When the Sympathetic Cords grow together to form a new Spinal Cord, as said above, Idâ and Pingala


Page 702

will be joined with Sushumna and they will also become one. Thus the Sympathetic Cords, which are concerned so largely with the glandular system, developed more in the female than in the male, and the Cerebro-spinal Axis, connected with the muscular system, developed more in the male than in the female, will reach equality or equilibrium, and with this the Androgyne becomes the typical Humanity.
The pure Âkâúa passes up Sushumna; its two aspects pass up Idâ and Pingala. These play along the curved walls of the Cord in which is Sushumna. They are semi-material, one positive and one negative, one solar and the other lunar, and these two start into action the free and spiritual current of Sushumna. They have distinct paths of their own, otherwise they would radiate all over the body. By concentration on Idâ and Pingala is generated the “sacred Fire,” and these are the “sentries on either side” (p. 616), by the action of which alone the Sushumnic current can be roused into activity. [But this concentration cannot be done without details not yet given.]
Sushumna, Idâ, and Pingala, are the three vital airs, and are symbolized in the Brâhmanical thread. When these vital airs are active a circulation is set up which passes through the whole Body, originating in and returning to the central canal. This is why man has been represented by a tree, with its circulation rising up the inner, and descending along the outer, parts of the wood. Hence the use of trees in symbolism, and the representation of the Dhyâni-Chohanic Body as a tree.
The student may now learn why no one can properly or with safety enter on the study of Practical Occultism, in the real sense of the word, unless he or she is a celibate, and why any who get hold of some of the Ha˜ha-Yoga exercises, and who begin to practice them in the midst of an ordinary family life, or while living in a loose way sexually, must, if to any extent successful, bring upon themselves physical disease, and very likely madness. The Spinal Cord puts into connection the Brain and the Generative Organs, and this connection is further strengthened by the Sympathetic System. The Cord, however, gives an open passage, which opens into the important cavities of the Brain. Excitement of the Generative Organs sends up impulses and subtle essences to the Brain by way of the spinal canals. Now the three vital airs are ruled by the Will, and Will and Desire are the higher and lower aspects of one and the same thing. These airs, as said, play in the canals, and hence the importance of their absolute purity. For if they soil the vital airs energized by the Will, disease results at the best, Black Magic at the worst. Therefore all sexual intercourse is forbidden to the students of Practical Occultism.
For instruction in Practical Occultism it is necessary to have acquired power of concentration, and then to receive certain definite directions.


Page 703

The latter would be of little use to a student who has not already attained the power of concentrating his Mind and Will. This power should be cultivated and trained in the Lower Degrees, and it is to this end that the Rule ordering daily meditation was laid down. There is no other way of attaining the power of concentration, and without this power, largely developed, no progress can be made in Practical Occultism, no beginning even of it being possible.


The Sthûla-Śarîra is made up of molecules, informed and ensouled by Atoms. The molecule has in it the Seven Principles, in their Prâkritic manifestation. As man, as a whole, contains every element that is found in the universe, and as there is nothing in the Macrocosm that is not in the Microcosm; so every molecule is, in its turn, the mirror of its universe, Man. It is this which renders man alone capable of conceiving the universe on this plane of existence; he has in him the Macrocosm and the Microcosm.
The Atom, esoterically, contains the six Principles and dwells in the molecule, the molecule being the Body, or Sthûla-Śarîra of the Atom, as Âtma contains all and dwells in the material universe. In its highest aspect it is on the seventh sub-plane of the lowest Prâkritic plane, and is thus the Âtma of the objective Cosmos. It is thus spiritual, and is forever invisible on this plane, and in its first manifestations it remains atomic, as Âtma-Buddhi-Manas in the molecule. Thus, on the lowest Prâkritic sub-plane is afforded the material upâdhi through which the higher Principles can act in the Body. The Ego is atomic, spiritual, and so are the Atoms which form explicitly the three higher Principles of the molecules, as well as contain implicitly the lower. Molecules form round the Atom, and these molecules are related to Kâma-Manas, Kâma, Linga-Śarîra, and finally, as outer coating, appear as the molecules of the Sthûla-Śarîra. The Astral Bodies are molecular, however etherealized may be their composition, whereas the Ego is atomic. This is the difference between the nature and essence of the Astral Bodies and the Ego. These Atoms are the thirty-three crores of Gods met with in Hindu books. But with all this the actual nature of the Ego cannot be understood by finite mind. The student may now better understand the statement (p. 661) that the consciousness of the senses, being that of the molecules, is in Âtma-Buddhi and without Manas. The Mânasic upâdhi is not developed in the molecule, hence the Mânasic aspect of the sevenfold Âtma cannot manifest in it, and there is no self-consciousness in the molecule, or in the cell composed of molecules. Thus the cells of the legs or other parts are conscious, but they are slaves of an idea or volition


Page 704

sent to them and obey it. They are not self-conscious, and cannot originate an idea. When they are tired they can send to the brain an uneasy sensation, caused in them by exhaustion, by diminution of Prânic energy. Thus they give rise in the brain to the idea of fatigue, the Lower Manas translating the cell-Kâmic sensation of exhaustion into the idea of fatigue.
Rude physical health is a drawback to seership––as may be seen in the case of Swedenborg. It is an excess of Prâna setting up powerful molecular vibrations, and so drowning the Atomic.
The Linga-Śarîra, or ethereal double of the Body, is molecular in constitution, but of molecules invisible to the physical eyes. It is therefore not homogeneous. [The Astral Light is nothing but the shadow of the real Divine Light, and is not molecular.]



The Linga-Śarîra, as often said before, is the vehicle of Prâna, and supports life in the Body. It is the reservoir or sponge of life, gathering it up from all the natural kingdoms around, and it is the intermediary between the kingdoms of Prânic and physical life. Life cannot pass immediately and directly from the subjective to the objective, for nature passes gradually from sphere to sphere, overleaping none. The Linga-Śarîra serves as the intermediary between Prâna and Sthûla-Śarîra, drawing life from the ocean of Jîva, and pumping it in the physical Body as Prâna. For life is, in reality, Divinity, Parabrahman, the Universal Deity. But in order that it may manifest on the physical plane it must be assimilated to the matter of that plane; this cannot be done directly, as the purely physical is too gross, and thus it needs a vehicle––the Linga-Śarîra.
The Linga-Śarîra is in a sense the permanent seed for the Sthûla-Śarîra of man, and Weissmann, in his theory of the hereditary germ,* is not far from the truth. But it would be an error to say that there is one permanent seed oversouled by a single Ego in a series of incarnations. The Linga-Śarîra of one incarnation fades out, as the Sthula-Śarîra to which it belongs rots out; the Auric Egg furnishes the basis of the new Linga-Śarîra and the Tâòhic Elementals form it (p. 609) within the Auric Envelope, the continuity being thus preserved; it lies dormant in the foetal state, during the Devachan of the entity to whom it belongs, and enters, in due course, a woman’s womb. It is first in the womb, and then comes the germ that fructifies it, from the male
* The Secret Doctrine, Vol. I, 223, footnote.


Page 705

parent. It is the subjective image of the man that is to be, the model of the physical body in which the child is to be formed and developed. It is then clothed with matter, as were the Lunar Pitris, and is therefore often called the Chhâyâ. Up to the age of seven, it forms and moulds the Body; after that age, the Body forms the Linga-Śarîra. The Mind and the Linga-Śarîra mutually act and react on each other, and so is prepared a mould for the next incarnation. It is the perfect picture of the man, good or bad, according to his own nature. It cannot therefore be said that there is one permanent Linga-Śarîric seed in the incarnations of the Ego; it is a perpetual succession of destruction and reformation, the Manas by the Auric Egg affording the permanent seed; “it is Heaven and Earth kissing each other.”
During incarnation the germ, or life essence, of the Linga-Śarîra, is, as said, in the Spleen; the Chhâyâ lies curled up therein. And now let the student escape from much confusion by distinguishing between the various Astral Bodies and the true Astral. The Astral, par excellence, the Second Principle in Man, corresponding to the Second Principle in Cosmos, is the progeny of the Chhâyâ of the Lunar Pitris and the Auric Essence that absorbed it. (See p. 608.) This is the moulder of the infant’s Body, the model spoken of above. This has for its physical organ the Spleen, and during incarnation has its seat there. It affords the basis for all Astral Bodies, for the Linga-Śarîra proper, and the Mâyâvi-Rûpas used as vehicles for different Principles. Let us then now call it the Chhâyâ, in view of its origin. When an Astral Body is to be formed, the Chhâyâ evolves a shadowy, curling or gyrating essence like smoke, which gradually takes form as it emerges. In order that this essence may become visible, the Chhâyâ draws on the surrounding atmosphere, attracting to itself certain minute particles floating therein, and so the Linga-Śarîra, or other Astral vehicle is formed outside the physical Body. This process has often been observed at spiritualistic séances, at which materialization has occurred. An Esotericist has seen the Chhâyâ emerging from Eglinton’s left side,* and forming in the way here described.
This ethereal Body, built outside the Sthûla-Śarîra, is the Linga-Śarîra, properly so termed; it could not form in vacuo, it is built up temporarily, with the Chhâyâ as its foundation, and disperses when the Chhâyic foundation is withdrawn into the Body. This Linga-Śarîra is united to the physical Body by an umbilical cord, a material cord, and cannot therefore travel very far from it. It may be hurt by a sharp instrument, and would not face a sword or bayonet, although it can
* [William Eglinton (1857-1933), famous medium, concerning whom information may be found in Vol. III, pp. 503-05, of the Collected Writings.]


Page 706

easily pass through a table or other piece of furniture. When swords are struck at Shades, it is the sword itself, not its Linga-Śarîra, or Astral that cuts. Sharp instruments alone can penetrate such Astrals; thus, under water, a blow with a blunt object would not affect you so much as a cut would.

At spiritualistic séances the Linga-Śarîra of the medium materializes, the resemblance to deceased persons being mostly caused by the imagination, but sometimes by an Elemental throwing onto the Linga-Śarîra a reflection of a picture of the defunct in the Astral Light, thus producing the likeness. The clothing on such phantasms is formed from the living particles of the medium’s body, and is no real clothing, nor has it anything to do with the clothing of the medium. All the material clothing seen at materialization séances has been paid for. Materialized forms are to be for the present divided into two classes: (a) those with a definite form produced by the sub-conscious or other thought of the person to whom the form belongs, or as above stated, and, (b) those the form, or semblance, or appearing of which is due to the combined thought of the person to whom it belongs, and the person who sees it, so that the outer appearance is due to a process of thought or imagination exercised by the one or the other. The imagination and the thought in these cases take place or act at the same time with too small an interval to be noticed. It is these facts about Astral Bodies that account for the Arabian and Eastern tales about Jinns, bottle imps, etc. Dugpas are able to work on the Linga-Śarîras of other people. When a man visits another in his Astral Body, it is the Linga-Śarîra that goes, but this cannot happen at any great distance. So also it is the Linga-Śarîra that is seen in the neighborhood of persons as their “doubles.” And it is the Linga-Śarîra that is used to move objects without visible contact. A Linga-Śarîra can be formed by the escaping Chhâyâ without any knowledge of the person emanating it, and can wander about, but it is not then fully endowed with Consciousness. Such projection of the Astral Body should not be attempted.

A more important kind of Astral Body is the Mâyâvî-Rûpa, or illusionary Body, and this is of different degrees. All have the Chhâyâ as upâdhi, but they may be unconscious or conscious. If a man thinks intensely of another at a distance, his Mâyâvî-Rûpa may appear to that person, without the projector knowing anything about it. This Mâyâvi-Rûpa is formed by the unconscious use of Kriyâúakti, when the thought is at work with much intensity and concentration. It is formed without the idea of conscious projection, and it is itself unconscious, a thought body, but not a vehicle of Consciousness. But when a man consciously projects a Mâyâvi-Rûpa and uses it as a vehicle of Consciousness,


Page 707

he is an Adept. No two persons can be simultaneously conscious of one another’s presence, unless one of the two be an Adept.
In the formation of a Mâyâvi-Rûpa, as already said, the upâdhi is furnished by the Chhâyâ, the “basis of all forms.” When an Adept projects his Mâyâvi-Rûpa, the guiding intelligence that informs it comes from the Heart, the essence of Manas entering it; the attributes and qualities are drawn from the Auric Envelope. Nothing can hurt the Mâyâvi-Rûpa–no sharp instrument or weapon––since, as regards this plane, it is purely subjective. It has no material connection with the physical Body, no umbilical cord. It is spiritual and ethereal, and passes everywhere without let or hindrance. It thus entirely differs from the Linga-Śarîra, which, if injured, acts by repercussion on the physical Body. The Mâyâvi-Rûpa is a Manasic Body, and should not be confused with the Linga-Śarîra; its projection is always a Mânasic act, since it cannot be formed without the activity of Kriyâúakti. The Mâyâvi-Rûpa may be so strongly vitalized that it can go on to another plane, and can there unite with the beings of that plane, and so ensoul them. But this can only be done by an Adept. Dugpas and Sorcerers, the Adepts of the Left Hand Path, are able to create and use Mâyâvi-Rûpas of their own.
As said, the projection of the Linga-Śarîra should not be attempted, but the student should seek to exercise the power of Kriyâúakti in the conscious projection of the Mâyâvi-Rûpa.



Although the student can no longer look on Prâna as one of the Seven Principles, since it is the Universal Life, he must not forget that it vivifies all, as Prânic energy. Every Principle is a differentiation of Jîva, and the life-motion in each is Prâna, “the Breath of Life.” It is Nephesh: and Jîva becomes Prâna only when the child is born. Thus Kâma depends on Prâna, without which there would be no Kâma. Prâna wakes the Kâmic germs to life, and it makes all desires vital and living.
Prâna is not, it must be remembered, the production of the countless “lives” that make up the human Body, nor of the congeries of the cells and atoms of the Body. It is the parent of the “lives,” not their product. As an example, a sponge may be immersed in an ocean; the water in the sponge’s interior may be compared to Prâna; the water outside is Jîva. Prâna is the motor-principle in life. The Body leaves Prâna, Prâna does not leave it. Take out the sponge from the water, and it becomes dry––thus symbolizing death.


Page 708

The Kâma during life does not form a Body which can be separated from the physical Body. It is intermolecular, answering molecule for molecule to the physical Body, and inseparable from it molecularly. Thus it is a form yet not a form; a form within the physical Body, but incapable of being projected outward as a form. This is the Inner, or Astral Man, in whom are located the centres of sensation, the psychic senses, and on whose intermolecular rapport with the physical Body, all sensation and purposive action depend. At death, every cell and molecule gives out this essence, and from it, with the dregs of the Auric Envelope, is formed the separate Kâma-Rûpa; but this can never come during life. The Blood is a good symbol of Kâma-Rûpa, for while within the Body, filling every portion but confined in vessels, it takes the shape of the Body and has a form, though in itself formless. If the term Kâma-Rûpa be used to indicate this intermolecular structure which is the Psychic Man, then the post mortem separate form must be called the Kâma-Rûpa-Astral, or Astral of the Kâma-Rûpa.
During life the Lower Manas acts through this Kâma-Rûpa, and so comes into contact with the Sthûla-Śarîra; this is why the Lower Manas is said to be “enthroned in Kâma-Rûpa” (p. 635). After death it ensouls the Kâma-Rûpa for a time, until the Higher Triad, having reabsorbed the Lower Manas, or such portion of it as it can reabsorb, passes into Devachan. The normal period during which any part of the consciousness remains in Kâma-Loka, i.e., is connected with the Kâma-Rûpa, is one hundred and fifty years. The Kâma-Rûpa eventually breaks up, and leaving in Kâma-Loka the Tânhic Elementals (p. 609), its remaining portions go into animals, of which the red-blooded come from man. Cold-blooded animals are from the matter of the past.
We have already seen that, in the Body, Kâma is specially connected with the Blood, Liver, Stomach, Navel, and Generative Organs, leaving out now its organs in the Head, which are connected with its psychic rather than with its animal aspect. Connected so strongly with the organs that support and propagate life, the acme of Kâma is the sexual instinct. Idiots show such desires, and also appetites connected with food, etc., but nothing higher. Therefore, to get rid of Kâma, you must crush out all your material instincts––“crush out matter.” But at the same time you must remember that Kâma, while having as part of it bad passions and emotions, animal instincts, yet helps you to evolve, by giving also the desire and impulse necessary for rising. For in Kâma-Prâna are the physical elements which impel to growth both physically and psychically, and without these energetic and turbulent elements progress could not be made. The Sun has a physical as well as a mental effect on man, and this effect of the Sun on humanity is connected with Kâma-Prâna, with these most physical Kâmic elements, for from


Page 709

the Sun flows the Vital Principle which, falling on these, impels to growth. Hence the student must learn to dominate and purify Kâma, until only its energy is left as a motor power, and that energy directed wholly by the Mânasic Will.



The Lower Manas is, in many respects, most difficult to understand. There are enormous mysteries connected with it. We shall here consider it as a Principle, taking later the workings of Consciousness in the Quaternary, and in each member of it.
The important point to grasp is its relationship to the Higher Manas.
Manas is, as it were, a globe of pure, Divine Light, a Ray from the World Soul, a unit from a higher sphere, in which is no differentiation. Descending to a plane of differentiation it emanates a Ray which is itself, which it can only manifest through the personality already differentiated. This Ray is the Lower Manas, while the globe of Divine Light, a Kumâra on its own plane, is the Higher Ego, or Higher Manas, Manas proper. But it must never be forgotten that the Lower Manas is the same in its essence as the Higher.
This Higher Ego, at incarnation, shoots out the Ray, the Lower Ego. At every incarnation a new Ray is emitted, and yet in essence it is the same Ray, for the essence is always one, the same in you and in me and in everybody. Thus the Higher Ego incarnates in a thousand bodies. The Flame is eternal. From the Flame of the Higher Ego the Lower is lighted, and from this a lower vehicle, and so on. For this Ray can manifest on this Earth, sending out its Mâyâvi-Rûpa. The Higher Ego is the Sun, we may say, and the personal Manases are its Rays; the mission of the Higher Ego is to shoot out a Ray to be a soul in a child. Only thus can the Higher Ego manifest, for thus it manifests through its attributes. Only thus also can it gather experience; and the meaning of the passage in the Upanishads, where it says that the Gods feed upon men, is that the Higher Ego obtains its Earth experience through the Lower.
These relationships may be better conceived by a study of the following diagram:


Page 710

When the Ray is thus shot forth, it clothes itself in the highest degree of the Astral Light, and is then ready for incarnation; it has been spoken of at this stage as the Chhâyâ, or shadow, of the Higher Mind, as indeed it is. This clothing of itself in a lower form of Matter is necessary for action in the Body; for as an emanation of the Higher Manas and of the same nature, it cannot, in that nature, make any impression on this plane nor receive any. An archangel, having no experience, would be senseless on this plane, and could neither give nor receive impressions. Hence the Lower Manas clothes itself with the essence of the Astral Light, and this Astral Envelope shuts it out from its Parent, except through the Antaskarana. The Antaskarana is therefore that portion of the Lower Manas which is one with the Higher, the essence, that which retains its purity; on it are impressed all good and noble aspirations, and in it are the upward energies of the Lower Manas, the energies and tendencies which become its Devachanic experiences. The whole fate of an incarnation depends on whether this pure essence, Antaskarana, can restrain the Kâma-Manas or not. It is the only salvation. Break this and you become an animal.
But while the inner essence of the higher Ego is unsoilable, that part of it which may be spoken of as its outer garment, the portion of the Ray which takes up Astral Matter, may be soiled. This portion of it forms the downward energies of the Lower Manas, and these go


Page 711

towards Kâma, and this portion may, during life, so crystallize itself and become one with Kâma, that it will remain assimilated with Matter.
Thus the Lower Manas, taken as a whole, is, in each Earth-Life, what it makes itself. It is possible for it to act differently on different occasions, although surrounded each time by similar conditions, for it has Reason and self-conscious knowledge of Right and Wrong, of Good and Evil, given to it. It is, in fact, endowed with all the attributes of the Divine Soul, and one of these attributes is Will. In this the Ray is the Higher Manas. The part of the Essence is the Essence, but while it is out of itself, so to say, it can get soiled and polluted, as above explained. So also it can emanate itself, as said above, and can pass its essence into several vehicles, e.g., the Mâyâvî-Rûpa, the Kâma-Rûpa, etc., and even into Elementals, which it is able to ensoul, as the Rosicrucians taught.*
This unity of Essence with its Divine Parent renders possible its absorption into its source, both during Earth-Life and during the Devachanic interval.
There comes a moment, in the highest meditation, when the Lower Manas is withdrawn into the Triad, which thus becomes the Quaternary, the Tetraktys of Pythagoras, the highest, the most sacred, of all symbols. This upward withdrawal of the Lower Manas leaves what was the Quaternary as a Lower Triad, which is then reversed. The Upper Triad is reflected in the Lower Manas. The Higher Manas cannot reflect itself, but when the Green passes upward it becomes a mirror for the Higher; it is then no more Green, having passed from its associations. The Psyche, thus separated from Kâma, unites itself with the Higher Triad and becomes spiritual; the Triad is reflected in the Fourth, and the Tetraktys is formed. So long as you are not dead, there must be something in which the Higher Triad is to be reflected; for there must be something to bring back to the waking Consciousness the experiences passed through on the higher plane. The Lower Manas is a tablet, which retains the impressions made upon it during trance; thus serving as a carrier between the Higher Manas and the everyday Consciousness. This withdrawal of the Lower Manas from the Lower Quaternary, and the formation of the Tetraktys, is the Turîya state; it is entered on the Fourth Path, and is described in a note to The Voice of the Silence as a state of high spiritual consciousness, beyond the dreamless state.
* See Le Comte de Gabalis, by the Abbé de Montfaucon de Villars.


Page 712

As said, the effect of the Sun on man is connected with Kâma-Prâna; that of the Moon is chiefly Kâma-Mânasic, or psycho-physiological. It acts on the psychological brain, the brain-mind.
Taken from the matter left by H.P.B. ... for such use.


The workings of Consciousness in each member of the Quaternary and the question of the Skandhas will be dealt with in future Instructions.