H.P. Blavatsky on Akasha
TRANSACTIONS OF THE BLAVATSKY LODGE, p. 94-96
Q. What is meant by prototypes existing in the Astral Light ? (*S.D., Vol. I, p. 63.)
A. Astral Light is here used as a convenient phrase for a term very little understood, viz: "the realm of AkÔsa, or primordial Light manifested through the divine Ideation." The latter must be accepted in this particular case as a generic term for the universal and divine mind reflected in the waters of Space or Chaos, which is the Astral Light proper, and a mirror reflecting and reversing a higher plane. In the ABSOLUTE or Divine Thought everything exists and there has been no time when it did not so exist; but Divine Ideation is limited by the Universal Manvantaras. The realm of AkÔsa is the undifferentiated noumenal and abstract Space which will be occupied by Chidakasam, the field of primordial consciousness. It has several degrees, however, in Occult philosophy; in fact, "seven fields." The first is the field of latent consciousness which is coeval with the duration of the first and second unmanifested Logoi. It is the "Light which shineth in darkness and the darkness comprehended it not" of St. John's Gospel. When the hour strikes for the Third Logos to appear, then from the latent potentiality there radiates a lower field of differentiated consciousness, which is Mahat, or the entire collectivity of those Dhyan Chohans of sentient life of which Fohat is the representative on the objective plane and the Manasaputras on the subjective. The Astral Light is that which mirrors the three higher planes of consciousness, and is above the lower, or terrestrial plane; therefore it does not extend beyond the fourth plane, where, one may say, the AkÔsa begins.
There is one great difference between the Astral Light and the AkÔsa which must be remembered. The latter is eternal, the former is periodic. The Astral Light changes not only with the Mahamanvantaras but also with every subperiod and planetary cycle or Round.
Q. Then do the prototypes exist on a plane higher than that of the Astral Light?
A. The prototypes or ideas of things exist first on the plane of Divine eternal Consciousness, and thence become reflected and reversed in the Astral Light, which also reflects on its lower individual plane the life of our Earth, recording it on its "tablets." Therefore, is the Astral Light called illusion. It is from this that we, in our turn, get our prototypes. Consequently unless the Clairvoyant or SEER can get beyond this plane of illusion, he can never see the Truth, but will be drowned in an ocean of self-deception and hallucinations.
Q. And what is the AkÔsa proper?
A. The AkÔsa is the eternal divine consciousness which cannot differentiate, have qualities, or act; action belongs to that which is reflected or mirrored from it. The unconditioned and infinite can have no relation with the finite and conditioned. The Astral Light is the Middle Heaven of the Gnostics, in which is Sophia Achamoth, the mother of the seven builders or Spirits of the Earth, which are not necessarily good, and among which the Gnostics placed Jehovah, whom they called Ildabaoth. (Sophia Achamoth must not be confounded with the divine Sophia.) We may compare the AkÔsa and the Astral Light, with regard to these prototypes, to the germ in the acorn. The latter, besides containing in itself the astral form of the future oak, conceals the germ from which grows a tree containing millions of forms. These forms are contained in the acorn potentially, yet the development of each particular acorn depends upon extraneous circumstances, physical forces, &c.
Q. But how does this account for the endless varieties of the Vegetable Kingdom?
A. The different variations of plants, &c., are the broken rays of one Ray. As the ray passes through the seven planes, it is broken on every plane into thousands and millions of rays down to the world of forms, every ray breaking into an intelligence on its own plane. So that we see every plant has an intelligence, or its own purpose of life, so to speak, and its own freewill, to a degree. This is how I,at any rate, understand it. A plant can be receptive or non-receptive, though every plant without an exception feels and has a consciousness of its own. But besides the latter, every plant--from the gigantic tree down to the minutest fern or blade of grass--has, Occultism teaches us, an Elemental entity of which it is the outward clothing on this plane. Hence, the Kabalists and the mediŠval Rosicrucians are always found talking of Elementals. According to them, everything possessed an Elemental sprite.