The Teaching Autobiography, Contents: Chapter 1 Chapter 2 Chapter 3 Chapter 4 Chapter 5 Chapter 6 Chapter 7 Chapter 8 Chapter 9 Chapter 10 Chapter 11 Chapter 12 Chapter 13 Chapter 14 Chapter 15 Chapter 16 Chapter 17 Photo 1 Photo 2 Photo 3 Photo 4
What does the Teaching mean to me? To me it is the reason why I was born, the pattern of my life. Until it began I always had the feeling of an event lying in the future which was of more importance to me than anything that had yet happened. When it did start, I was not conscious of that feeling changing but it did pass.
Once a man who was interested in the Summary of the Teaching asked me if I had considered what Jung would have had to say about the scheme? I replied to him: "I have read very little on these subjects and not any of Jung's works." In the first fifteen years Dr Bodley was anxious to keep from me any books that might influence me, that I might be free from other theories. It is only in recent years, when the Teaching was complete and the first version of the Summary written, that I have started to read such books. I feel that sometimes certain books were brought into my pattern such as those of Charles Morgan and Laurens Van der Post and it gave me much pleasure to find some of my own ideas shared. There is, I am, sure one book I was certainly meant to read and that was General Smut's book "Holism and Evolution" although I first obtained it to discover what was the philosophy of a man who was a friend of my husband and myself. This book did help me with the seventh chapter of the Summary to link what is known of evolution on earth with what I learnt in the Thought World but nothing else I have read has affected the Teaching and it is curious when I first asked for that book, it was not obtainable but when I was writing the Summary I got it.
So I feel it is of no importance to me whether what I have brought back, ties up with Jung or not, although I do see it could be of interest to others. This rough analogy explains what I mean. I am in the position of visiting the moon but am only equipped with an ordinary brain and with that have to bring back what information I can. Jung and others with exceptional brains are all trying to build up from facts and from amassed knowledge and ideas of conditions there. I recognise it is of equal importance that this approach through reason should be made. But it is not an easy task for me to translate into words what I discover there. So I think it would be hopelessly stupid on my part, if I were to try and fit in the knowledge I obtain with the theories of anyone else. This satisfied my questioner.
This Teaching came through 'remembrance' and for me 'remembrance' came in this manner. All the material and knowledge necessary for the Teaching was given to me in one 'remembrance'. In that vision I gained as clear a conception of the 'Light' as it is possible for my Conscious Mind to receive. I used to call that approach 'going up'. In the first part of my training, when I had to translate something I had seen in the Thought World, back into words, the first thing I wrote was an attempt to translate this 'going up'.
"From the great deep down, where time is one with space
And the sunset and the dawn but veils before the face,
To the uttermost height where sound and sight are one,
And silence is alone, The Will is done."
When I used the word 'gained' in connection with this vision, I find it needs an explanation. Before the Conscious Mind can receive 'remembrance' in the body, knowledge of what is to be remembered is acquired by the Conscious Mind when it is in the Thought World. This does not apply only to me. A work of art, or indeed any original conception is a translation of something apprehended in the Thought World first. The realities are there, our translations are an attempt to reproduce that reality in terms of a Conscious Mind on earth.
The Conscious Mind can move in the Thought World independently of the Supra-conscious Mind. I know there were various instances when my Conscious Mind was alone in the Thought World. For example, when I received that first vision, during my initiation, when I saw the answer to that question from Nicholas and whenever I wandered in time.
'Remembrance' of this vision revived in rather a strange way. One of the persistent peculiarities of its return was that it came in bits and pieces and these were not even consecutive. This fact, since no bit ever contradicted another bit, even when separated by years in reproduction, carried conviction to those members of our group who are governed by their reason, for it was known to be beyond the power of my normal mind. For not only was no bit contradicted, but like a piece of a jigsaw puzzle, somewhere at some time each bit fitted into a pattern that after many years produced a complete picture, finally collected in the form of the Summary.
There is a second and for me sometimes a painful condition of 'remembrance'. It must come in a personal form, something read or discussed, some thought or experience woven into my life, will bring a 'remembrance' into being but I must receive that personal experience as a prelude to gaining a general truth.
I have already given one example of 'remembrance'. This example illustrates a more complex case. I was told that Nicholas and I were Unity Conscious Minds. At the time it puzzled me, there should be this link between us, I should have expected it to be between him and his wife. I had called her 'the Brushwood Girl' because their relationship bore a resemblance to that tale of Kipling. This problem set me searching and I discovered that she and Nicholas were Special Contacts, a link that up to then we had not known of. It is a relationship as important as that of Unities and for Conscious Minds it is a closer link. With that discovery came the knowledge of groups, the reason for them, their formation and much else; a block of knowledge of much value that could not have come through without my being told that Nicholas and I were Unity Conscious Minds.
It is this second condition, of personal 'remembrance' preceding the truth it is to illustrate, which contains the reason as well as the excuse for what in here may not appear in good taste. This story had to fulfil that second condition, the personal truth or nothing.
Before I had that vision and 'remembrance' began, my life was I think a suitable prelude to this experience, for it was a normal life with a changing environment that kept me detached. In it I acquired a mildly agnostic frame of mind that left me unburdened with religious dogmas, or any background set of assumptions which this 'remembrance' would have had to overcome.
It was after writing the Summary here in this present peaceful harbour, that I remembered and pondered over much of what follows in this chapter. Whilst I was living my active life into which was woven these 'remembrances' from which the Teaching was formed, I did not stop to think of it objectively. Now, with old age, much has become plain that was bewildering and painful to live. I can see now that those experiences were necessary for a pattern I can now look back on, accept and put aside and this has given me freedom to think over many things.
To read this chapter with understanding and a minimum of irritation, the reader must accept that my standpoint is a peculiar one. The really vital difference between these conclusions and other theories is, that as soon as I had that first vision and 'remembrance' began, no idea or conclusion starts from earth to work outwards. All issue from the Thought World and are born from its ordered existence and purpose. The reader may not be able to accept the truth of my conclusions but he must accept that standpoint. To me earth people and things must fit in with the Thought World, not the Thought World with what is known here. If the reader is so constituted that he cannot accept mind and thought as creative power, nothing I say here will make sense.
To begin with, I never thought of Azrael as Christ, or Arrantees as the Holy Spirit. I knew them as Ruler and Director of the Thought World, representing the Light in personality. I knew They were the only Eternal Minds yet capable of uniting into one personality and thus going beyond the Third Progression into contact with the Light, yet retaining Their power of returning to the Thought World and resuming Their separate personality. My mildly agnostic point of view had no interest in Jesus and it was long after 'remembrance' began that a question of John sent me searching. He asked me to find out if Christ was in the Thought World and if so, what position He held. It was asking this question in the Thought World that led to my recognition that Azrael was Christ and had lived on earth as Jesus and later still, that Arrantees had lived Her life as the Virgin Mary. That personal 'remembrance' brought back all the knowledge connected with the Sphere of the Mind and the Sphere of the Heart.
I was aware from the beginning that the Absolute or the Light, although outside the complete comprehension of my or any other Conscious Mind, is Mind and Purpose in the Universe. For although the earth and the Thought World were created to meet a particular crisis in the development of Progressive Creative Personality, they are within the Absolute and are a part and I think a very small part, of Universal Purpose. So that all things, whether concrete or not concrete, evolve from mind or thought.
In the early days of my training, when I became aware that I was back in my earth existence again, my first reactions were unhappy. I was uneasily aware that I had returned to an unreal existence. It was earth that was by comparison shadowy, a distorted reflection and people on earth were not as I had hitherto thought a unity or whole but were ragged with queer holes and spaces. It was the world I had left that held reality. Its existence had the order, love and beauty that earth wants but cannot hold. There are reflections of these things on earth but how often obscured or distorted. Therefore if existence in the Thought World is only a development of Progressive Creative Personality, then earth is only a corollary to the Thought World. Bounded by time and space, earth is finite but progress is not and extends beyond the Thought World until personality returns to its source.
I have always been aware of that, although the Teaching has had to concentrate mainly on the purpose and relationship between the Thought World and earth and to build a bridge across the gap between the ideas of the East and those of the West; to show that Conscious Minds and their lives on earth are not to be evaded, or regarded as an illusion. Conscious Minds can be the vehicle in which reality is experienced, therefore there should not be an evasion of that vehicle. I think even when reality has been experienced by a Conscious Mind, that Conscious Mind might be willing to accept further earth lives, because the Way of Service has been proved to be an equal Way to that of Truth or Beauty.
Personality cannot be a separation from the Light but it could be a division, for a division can remain within, whereas separation implies being cut off. What was it in me that 'went up' in the Thought World, that suffered in my initiation, that can wander in time? It is that part of me that held its integrity in that initiation by that final "I AM", that has existed ever since my Conscious Mind was split from my Eternal Mind. It is a spark from the Light. This spark is a part of every individual, lost to a Conscious Mind only if his book is unfinished, for then that Conscious Mind has ceased in its search for the Light. A spark which now for the moment, because in this sense the sixty odd years of my life are a moment, exists in my physical body, together with the permanent characteristics inherited from my Eternal Mind who is on the Way of Truth, also my temporary hereditary traits from my parents, plus what was needed for this particular life and so drawn from the storehouse of my Supra-conscious Mind, all of which make up the personality which is me now. I am not a single person but component parts centred round that spark which is the nucleus. It is the work and purpose of every life to integrate these parts.
This being so, what is a Conscious Mind? You cannot confine it to the body and brain it inhabits, because there is evidence that there is a part of this mind that can have experience out of the body. I would liken the brain, which is mortal like the body, merely to a switchboard into which the various leads that form a personality are plugged and the mind, that spark with its expanding awareness, to the distributing center for all the leads. One lead, which also has its source in eternity and so is a permanent characteristic in each life of the Conscious Mind, is the inheritance each Conscious Mind has from its own Eternal Mind, differing mainly as to whether that Eternal Mind belonged to Truth, Beauty, or Service. Then there is the lead that carries those things that are drawn from the Supra-conscious Mind for the need of each life; also the lead for the temporary hereditary traits, which though derived through the genes, have also a source in the Thought World, because they can be strengthened or weakened by the way in which they are used in that life. There must also be a lead that carries a race instinct, I think a fading consciousness from the time of animal man, then unaware of the spark which was to be the centre of the whole personality of the Conscious Mind.
It seems to me as if each life we live is like a sum. We are given different combinations of figures, two being constant, the spark from the Light and our inheritance from our Eternal Mind and we have to work out the answer. Since each life brings to us a little more idea of the purpose of the Light, to work out each sum is worth while. For I do not see this question of living as a matter of doing right or wrong but rather in terms of gain and loss, these having their source in the experiences of that life, how such are met, accepted, or avoided.
The values a Conscious Mind holds, may be influenced by the set background values of his environment and by the age in which he lives, but they should develop and change through his state of growing awareness, by the way in which he integrates these figures in his sum with the nucleus or spark, which is the centre of his being. We are meant to think, to work out our own values, which will give us an inner integrity to govern our conduct, being careful not to force our own values on others, for that might upset their own different standards. But since even our own Eternal Minds could not solve the problems of their existence by pure thought, it is still less likely that we can. So experiences are given us, sometimes bitter ones, to illumine a truth that we should not otherwise accept. Then, when we make a decision in our lives based on thought and it is not in accordance with our given pattern, one that some codes of morality might call wrong, the experiences that follow that choice (the effect which may last over years) will, if fully lived and accepted, produce a change in our values that will bring us to the point of understanding or progress that we would not have reached, had we taken the other alternative choice. Consequently, to me, there is nothing wrong or right in itself, although if it seems wrong or right by your values it becomes so, until experience has caused you to alter those values. Likewise there is no personal merit in doing right but the effect, to borrow another's phrase, is an 'expanding awareness'.
In writing the Summary it was necessary to whittle it down to the essentials, so I feel it is rather the skeleton of the Teaching. This then is an attempt to add some of the flesh but it has not the same authority as the Summary, for that was given and this is a mixture of what was given and what my Conscious Mind has thought about it.
For instance we learn in the Summary that the only part of a Conscious Mind that survives death, can be summed up as the love and hate that has been acquired during that lifetime. Love? That would include any interests, all appreciation, affection and understanding attained in that life. But what about hate? These must also persist until they are dispersed in some future life. They are, I think, caused by either ignorance or fear of some sort and with greater understanding can be dispelled. They may range from small uncomfortable things, like a horror of some insect, or fear of some unpleasant form of death, to a more primitive habit or way of behaviour that reappearing later in some more civilised pattern we are ashamed of. But if we can accept them for what they are, the dark half from some previous life, instead of turning our back on them and trying to ignore or suppress them, they will be dispersed. But the really unjust prejudices and dislikes, I think these were probably created during a deviation from the pattern of the life in which they were formed, either through self will, or more likely through a missed opportunity. They will have to be worked out in some future life and if they were part of a major deviation, they may entail an extra life with the necessary contacts and an opportunity to change.
Then there is the effect on a Conscious Mind of the period and race into which he has been born. For although it is true that the History of Mankind is derived from the mass sum of individual lives, there is again a reaction from that whole background to the individual Conscious Mind, the influence of the set standards of his environment. The less adult the Conscious Mind is, the greater this influence. For behind the individual with his book of lives and its theme, is the overall pattern of the History of Mankind. As the individual has a pattern that, with the perfect exercise of his free will could be attained, so there is a blue print for each race existing in a particular civilisation, a blueprint for that civilisation; and what is as certain, there is a time limit to it, so that when that time limit has been reached, that civilisation will begin to decline. No civilisation reaches the perfection of its own blue print, since it is dependant on the response of the individual to the use of his free will but no civilisation fails to attain some part of its design, some more, some less. I think, during the rise of a civilisation or race, there will be a greater proportion of lives whose patterns are designed to lead and during the decline, the mass of the individual level will be raised. Hardships such as wars, pestilence and famine can be the means to raise this general level.
I have felt for many years that this present Western civilisation has reached that point in time when it is disintegrating. I look back in wonder to my youth when I believed civilised man had reached a standard of values and conduct that precluded the idea of another Dark Age. I think now the next civilisation will rise from China, her second with India and the lands North of India taking part and perhaps Africa and South America providing the stress that parts of Europe did to this one. But I am afraid there will first be a disrupting period stemming from Russia and the United States before the new civilisation can get going. I do not feel either of those races will be the sources of a civilisation.
To me there is no idea to which the following analogy cannot be applied. There is a ridge of perfection, which is the given pattern of individuals and the blue print of races. If we climbed to the top of that ridge and stayed there, perfection would be attained. But we don't. The very impetus that sometimes enables us to reach the top will create an excess that carries us down the other side. Take, for example, the concept of the Self. To claim that the Conscious Mind is itself complete and that it endures eternally is never to have reached that ridge of truth but to pursue the loss of self so far as to reject any continuous personality, is to leave that ridge and descend the other side. The same analogy can be applied to civilisations. They decline from the excess of the acquired characteristics that carried them to the top. Therefore an adult individual born into a declining civilisation will have to keep his integrity free from that excess, for unless he can do so, he will feel born out of time and place.
I see this present Western civilisation as having passed through three stages. The first, when might ruled, founding a society on arms, by which power and possessions were gained, held or lost. Then wealth, fed by machines, moved into the place of power, destroying the old aristocracy based on arms and hereditary possessions and became in turn the envied goal. Now, and probably the most dangerous of the three to the freedom and integrity of the individual, ideologies are gaining the ascendancy. Of course the three overlap and none entirely supplants the other. Not evil in themselves, they yet provide the most fertile ground for selfishness and exploitation to flourish and enslave their followers.
How very much the Thought World dominates my whole attitude towards both life and death! It is the base from which all my speculations arise. I have often wondered where it is. Is it in an interpenetration of states, so that our life on earth is like the life of an antheap where we are concentrated and confined to earth by time and space divided, unaware of the variety of states or life outside the environment of the antheap? Or has use been made of the whole solar system of our sun. I am at times inclined to this idea, because it seems to eliminate waste. It seems logical to me that the necessity that caused the creation of the Thought World and the earth for its solution, should all be contained in the same system. It might easily be that the other planets are used for the 'School', the 'Outside', the 'Darkness' and the six active 'Planes'. It has always puzzled me, why men when questioning the possibility of life on some other plane, must make their main consideration whether there are conditions there that could support this human kind of physical life. That to me is the mistake that comes from concentrating on the body rather than on the mind.
In the question of religions, I see that all are a development of Conscious Minds in their search for the Light. But from a personal point of view, they cannot contain truth for me in this life because of my inner knowledge. Direct approach to Azrael and Arrantees leaves church services lacking. Yet this lack of communication through the church troubled me, especially in the Communion Service, which surely should provide an approach, until finally I obtained this answer. The truth of my puzzle was sustained but I saw that perhaps in some future life in which personal progress and not my theme could be the main object, this present 'gift of remembrance' with its own approach might be withheld. So that if I now slam the door on all that the church stands for, I create a barrier in thought towards the church which might have to be overcome in the future. Whereas if I accept that it is an approach, the door through which in some future life I may be glad to enter, will not be jammed. I have accepted that, although it sometimes seems to me as if the church will have to change a lot if that is to be so. Or is the need in myself?
From a general point of view 'remembrance' seemed to show that in the future the three religions Buddhism, Christianity and the Muslim Religion will unite. I do not mean that their dogmas will survive the coming chaos and merge. What will continue is the essential truth from which each sprang. All religions have their origins in the Plane of Evolution of Mind and are a part of the History of Mankind but these three especially illumine three different aspects. I saw that Buddhism held the clearest conception of the Light, freed from the anthropomorphic attributes of the Jewish Jehovah which still persists in many forms of Christianity and which make the personality of Azrael and Arrantees a work of supererogation. Then the Muslim belief with its emphasis on prayer, its wisdom in not confining spiritual experience to mosques, lays stress on the necessity of individual communication with the Light. Christianity from the foundation of the earth lives of Azrael and Arrantees, illumines the truth that the life of the Conscious Mind on earth, is not waste or illusion but a definite part of the purpose of the whole and while his search for the Light is his objective, contains that spark that makes man himself also a part of the whole, teaching him that the Way of Service is an equal Way to that of Truth and Beauty and that all three lead to the Light.
Then there is love and its curious human attractions. Love at first sight may not be the experience of all of us but most have witnessed cases of it. It is a compulsion so strong that it will make a man, who hitherto had no thought of marriage, enter that state almost as soon as he meets one particular woman. This does not always ensure a happy marriage. It is more likely they have been brought together to share experiences which may have to be attained without consideration of their happiness. Then again there are cases of attraction which seem to their friends incongruous, yet are as likely to reach success as others which seem well arranged. I do not know how psychology deals with these attractions but if you start with these relationships from the viewpoint of the Thought World, there are no difficulties, for attractions have their foundations in the given patterns. A Unity Conscious Mind or a Special Contact would always, I think, be attracted towards each other, although if it is not their pattern to be together I have known it to be only a passing recognition. In addition to the many relationships which have their origins in the Thought World is the attraction of those who have lived and met on earth before and have already attained some level of affection in that past life.
It is possible, I think, for two individuals to meet, whose Conscious Minds have never met before, but even in such cases the Eternal Minds of those Conscious Minds would have contact. Groups are not isolated but are closely linked with many other groups in their work, and the Conscious Minds of such groups are likely to be drawn together in their earth lives; for the work of such groups is often interwoven, and in interest and love all groups have some contact.
There are perhaps three levels of love, the physical, the mental and the spiritual. As for human love, there are some who think physical love is the only reality and there are those who go to the other extreme by trying to ignore that side, or of almost being ashamed of it. Then there is the mental level of love which may or may not grow out of the physical. This mental love between a man and a woman is difficult to maintain because of their different approaches of reason and feeling. When love between a man and a woman is raised to this level the man is sometimes aware of a warm protective tenderness towards the woman and her response is a feeling of happiness and security. Her heart is encompassed by this love and she is at rest. There is a mental recognition of the need of the one for the other. I suppose it must be rare and intermittent on earth but I do not think there is any greater happiness than when it is attained. This is the level of love that can reach perfection in the relationship between two Supra-conscious Minds, this higher level of human love. Between such it is sometimes shot through with adventures and humour. The Unity link is perhaps at its strongest between Supra-conscious Minds. As you know Unity Conscious Minds meet seldom on earth and the level of love between Eternal Minds is higher and somewhat different but Supra-conscious Minds often reach an enchanting companionship. These lines, written to Nicholas trying to wake him up to some remembrance of the fun shared between our Supra-conscious Minds, illustrates something of this aspect although they are only symbolic.
Riding the wind, between the stars, we shouted at the follies of mankind
Don't you remember Zoph!
Creating dreams for them, to fit the labour of their day.
At times, because our other selves had not yet wholly mastered us
Occasioned nightmares, which our laughter exploded in its breath.
Companions on our way from sleep, during its tiny span our minds were free for play
Can't you remember Zoph?
The level reached by Eternal Minds is more difficult for us to understand but the mystic approaches it. For Eternal Minds it is a reflection from their own vision of the Third Progression in which the division of heart and mind is no more. It is where Unity Eternal Minds and their groups rest in the perfect completed love of a united heart and mind.
On earth it seems as if these three aspects of love are somehow set apart, almost as if they were opposed. With the knowledge of the power of love in the Thought World, where there would be no possible progress without it, it seems to me the height of absurdity for us to try and box it up in compartments. I think it is a good thing for us to recognise the importance of physical love, apart from it being the means of procreation, because of the warm freedom and happiness it can establish between two individuals. After all it was made a part of our creation, so I think, the only way to make it a part of the whole is to accept it simply with gaiety. Like the different components of our personality, surely the aim should be to arrive at a state of living in which these different aspects of love exist in harmony. It has always seemed to me as if division leads away from the Light and union leads back.
So to me love is life. Without love there would be no life, either of the body, the mind, or the spirit.