THE PATH OF WISDOM (by Eric McGough)
This article outlines the Soul’s pathway to wisdom. It describes how everything is an expression of the divine thought in the universal mind whilst outlining that we are an essential part of its ultimate purpose. The need for us to recognise the oneness of all life and to see ourselves as we truly are is emphasised. The writer outlines the complementary nature of the mystic and occult paths whilst describing how these merge as the aspirant approaches the more rarefied heights of spiritual awareness, treading the path of wisdom based upon selfless-service.
CHRIST IN THE HOUSE OF MARTHA AND MARY (by Alan Senior)
The painting by Jan Vermeer depicting Jesus in the Bethany house belonging to Martha is used as an illustration for this article as it displays the contrast between an active life and a contemplative one. The writer compares and outlines Vermeer’s symbolism of Martha’s incessant activity on behalf of her visitor, and Mary’s quietude at his feet. Mary is described as a recipient of the Inner Mysteries whilst Martha remains unaware of her essential nature.
HALCYON AND THE CITY OF LIGHT (by Alan Senior)
This article contains a description of the origin of The Temple of the People, inspired by three masters of the wisdom in 1898, and now based in Halcyon, California. The aims and objectives of the small American community based at the temple are outlined together with an illustration of the commonality between these and of other like-minded groups such as the Theosophists and Alice Bailey’s New Group of Word Servers.
HARRY POTTER AND THE ANCIENT WISDOM (by John Algeo)
The writer demonstrates how the myth, legend and magic contained within the tales of Harry Potter bears correspondence to the ideas of Theosophy. It is illustrated how the symbolism utilised by their author J.K. Rowling relates to the archetypal quest for self-discovery. The article adopts a comparative approach by outlining similarities in the themes contained within the Harry Potter books to those of classical myth; Lewis Carroll’s Alice in Wonderland and J.R.R. Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings. The writer discusses the ‘Hogwarts Lessons of Life’ and of how these symbolise various requirements related to the treading of the spiritual path.
OLCOTT AND BLAVATSKY: THEOSOPHICAL TWINS, AN ESSAY IN ARCHETYPES (by John Algeo)
The co-founders of the Theosophical Society are considered here as ‘archetypal twins’. The article offers an outline of the relationship between Jung’s concept of archetypes and the teachings of Theosophy “. It provides examples and explains the underlying symbolism related to various ‘archetypal twins’ including the Greek Dioscuri, the Hindu Ashvins, Cain and Abel and Gilgamesh and Enkidu. The writer suggests that the lives of the ‘Theosophical Twins’ Olcott and Blavatsky can inspire us towards following in their archetypal footsteps towards the conscious realization of the unity of all existence.
THEOSOPHY (by Annie Besant)
The article begins by considering the lineage of the great body of doctrine that constitutes Theosophy, its origins in antiquity and its transmission throughout the ages by those who may be described as ‘initiates’. An outline of the creation and structure of universe together with the constitution of Man is given together with the purpose of human evolution and the role which reincarnation and karma play in this process. The timeless spiritual truths discussed here form the basis, the justification, and the need for one to seek to realise, the primary objective of the Theosophical Society of ‘Universal Brotherhood’.
GODS IN EXILE - Ch. 1, pp. 3-5 (by J.J. Van Der Leeuw)
This extract, from the writer’s book 'Gods in Exile' considers us to be like the mythological figure of Prometheus, chained to the rock of matter until we become conscious of our spiritual heritage and of what we truly are. It is then that there is born that age-long struggle in which one tries to free themself from the entanglement with the worlds of matter as they know themself as two persons in one- a higher divine Self within, ever calling one back to their spiritual home; and a lower animal nature, which is one’s consciousness bound to and dominated by their lower nature.
SOUL-CENTRED ASTROLOGY AS A KEY TO THE MYSTERIES (by Gary Kidgell)
The writer describes how Esoteric or ‘Soul-Centred’ Astrology has been fashioned as a key to the mysteries for the 21st century. Following on from the pioneering work of Carl Jung and his concept of archetypes and their representation in the human psyche as symbols, Esoteric Astrology enables the Soul or Higher Self to offer guidance and direction to the personality as a means of it ascertaining and implementing its purpose. This is achieved by means of an astrological ‘language of symbols’ which offers a key which unlocks the door to the unconscious, the realm of archetypes and causation.
LEONARD’S LAST SUPPER (by Alan Senior)
There are diverse interpretations of the symbolism found within Leonardo’s famous painting ‘The Last Supper’. The writer considers the opinions of the famous art critic and connoisseur Brian Sewell, together with his own observations, as a means of addressing the contemporary interpretation of Dan Brown in ‘The Da Vinci Code’ who was influenced by Michael Baigent, Richard Leigh and Henry Lincoln’s Holy Blood and the Holy Grail and Lynne Picknett and Clive Prince’s The Templar Revelation.
MOUNTAINS AS SYMBOLS OF ASCENT (by Alan Senior)
This article illustrates the symbolism of mountains as representing an exalted state of consciousness. It describes how their ascent, and the efforts required here, may be held to symbolise the challenges towards achieving spiritual transformation as the pinnacle of human achievement. The writer offers many examples here such as David worshipping God on the mountain; Moses receiving the Ten Commandments on Mount Sinai; Christ delivering his teachings on the Mount whilst also describing the common symbolism of the Greek Olympus, the biblical Mount Sinai and the Buddhist Mount Meru.
SPIRITUAL ARCHERY (by Alan Senior)
Archery has often been called a ‘spiritual skill’ to express beauty and truth. This article demonstrates the prevalence of archery and its symbolic significance in various spiritual teachings and practices citing Arjuna’s bow in the Bhagavad Gita, the bows of Ulysses and Artemis in Greek myth and the Japanese act of Kyudo- the way of the bow. The writer outlines various interpretations of the spiritual goal symbolised by the releasing of the archer’s arrow towards its target.
WHAT IS TRUTH (by Alan Senior)
This article illustrates that ‘final knowledge is to be found only in ourselves; supreme illumination lies within’. The writer citesmaterial from H.P.B.’s Voice of the Silence and Shankara’s Viveka- Cudamani and the words of the Maha-Chohan as illustrations of how one may seek absolute truth. He describes how contemporary society, its strictures and the conditioning effects which it exerts are inimical towards the search for, and the realisation of, absolute truth and the importance of the esoteric teachings of Theosophy as a means of counteracting this.
WORLD OF ROERICH (by Alan Senior)
This excellent thirty six page article explores the work of Nicholas and Helena Roerich and particularly the paintings of Nicholas. At the end of the article there is a review of the book 'NICHOLAS ROERICH: A Quest and a Legacy', edited by Manju Kak.
THERE IS NO RELIGION HIGHER THAN TRUTH (by Wayne Gatfield)
This article considers the motto of the Theosophical Society and its implication as we seek spiritual development and growth. The writer draws on a vast array of sources including H.P. Blavatsky, the Mahatma Letters, the Bhagavad Gita, the Tao Te Ching, the writings of the Suif mystic Rumi and others.
WE ARE ALL GRAIL KNIGHTS (by Wayne Gatfield)
This transcript of a lecture given by Wayne considers the symbolism of the Grail legends in the light of the spiritual path and the classical esoteric teachings of Theosophy and of the Orient.