Causes initiated by Humanity itself
Slowly, step by step, humanity has created and intensified that glamorous condition of consciousness which we call the astral plane. All glamor is produced by the bringing together of one or more streams of energy which produce a temporary whirlpool of energies and, from the angle of man – the onlooker and participator – produce a condition of darkness, a state of bewilderment which makes clear choice and right discrimination difficult and, in the early stages, impossible. It creates an aura which is today of such a general nature and so all-enveloping that everybody is, figuratively speaking, immersed in it. This aura, in the infancy of the race, only surrounded the more advanced people. To understand what I mean by this statement, I would call your attention to the fact that very unintelligent people, those who are among the lowest human types, and those who are little more than active animals, governed primarily by the instincts, are apt to deal very simply and with complete directness with the facts of existence with which they are faced and which to them are of paramount or sole importance – the facts of hunger, of birth and death, of self-protection and perpetuation. There is little true glamor in their reaction to life and living, and their simplicity, like that of a child, saves and protects them from many of the subtler ills. Their emotions are not subtle, and their minds are unawakened. But, as humanity evolved and the higher levels of the racial consciousness became more subtle and the mind factor slowly became more active, then glamor and illusion developed very rapidly.
The first indications of glamor arose when the disciples and the aspirants of the Lemurian world (Whose problem was the right comprehension, correct functioning and control of the physical body) began to differentiate between themselves, as self-conscious beings, and physical and vital forces. That immediately set up a tremendous activity in the throat center which is the higher aspect of the sacral center (the sex center) and thus led to the initial glamor and to the first definite recognition and consideration of the sex impulse, of sex attraction, and – for the initiate of that period – of the necessary sex transmutation. This went hand in hand with the earliest Yoga, or the cult of the physical body with the objective of its control by the soul, and the consequent merging of the conscious and the subconscious.
Around the aspirants of that time could then be seen gathering the first clouds and fogs of glamor, though illusion was nowhere present. The first recognition of the plane of the emotions, of the astral plane, was evoked in the consciousness of the groups under preparation for the first initiation which was the highest initiation possible at that time. The reason for this slowly emerging astral consciousness in the physically polarized aspirant of that time, was due to the fact that one of the secrets of initiation consists in the right understanding and use of the consciousness which is aware and capable of functioning upon a plane higher than that on which humanity as a whole is, at any given time, living. Hence, in Lemurian times, the physically centered man who was on the verge of admission to the Path was aware of:
- The physical duality wherein his consciousness was accustomed to function normally and of the conflict between the physical body per se and the vital etheric body.
- A dimly sensed higher consciousness which was distinguished by quality and sentiency. This was all that he could at that time contact upon the most familiar plane today, the astral plane.
- A growing sense of self-identity which was the awakening soul or self, the Master who was to lead him out of the purely physical consciousness into the next divine stage, the astral consciousness. Forget not, through familiarity and fatigue of conflict, the divinity of each developing step.
Thus it will be apparent to you, if the above is a true statement of fact, that glamor arose from the recognition of these factors in consciousness and was the result of man’s reactions to the complexities of his own constitution and to the energy of his own soul.
As time went on, the entire human family became aware of the new emerging dualism existing between the physical constitution and the astral plane, plus the activity of the center within himself, which at this stage made its appearance as conscience and innate – and at that time unreasoning – realization of an urge to higher living or a tendency to lower activity. This nebulous conscience developed eventually into what we call the Voice of Conscience. When that took place, the intricacy and the difficulty of life was greatly increased and glamor was definitely established on Earth. It was that which enfolded and over-emphasized the lower at the expense of the higher, and served to distract the attention of the aspirant away from reality. May I again re-emphasize that, at this early stage, glamor was only evoked by and recognized by the highly evolved people of that period?
Then the Lemurian race slowly passed away and the Atlantean race came into existence. During the millions of years this race flourished on Earth there were vast numbers of people with the Lemurian consciousness flourishing at the same time, just as today in this modern Aryan race, there are many, many millions of people who express the Atlantean consciousness and are polarized in their astral bodies, the victims of emotion and of consequent glamor.
In the Atlantean race, the physical duality was then solved, and the physical body and the etheric body constituted a unity, and in the healthy person still do so. The sense of duality shifted then into a growing recognition of the conflict in the realm of quality and into the field of what we today call the “pairs of opposites” – good and evil, pain and pleasure, right and wrong, sense and nonsense, and the multiplicity of opposites by which the aspirant is today faced.
Each of these racial histories sees the establishing of a temporary sense of unity in the early stages, when the previous cleavage had been healed and the initial duality had been resolved into a unity. Then there comes a growing recognition of a fresh realm of choice, based upon the emergence of the higher values, and finally a period of conflict in the consciousness of the individual and of humanity as a whole, as the attempt is made to resolve this higher duality with which the man or the race is confronted.
This resolution is brought about when a higher aspect of the consciousness is dimly visioned and men become aware of themselves as mental beings. There is then a growing demand for that mind nature to be developed and brought into play in the effort to solve the problem in this category of opposites upon the astral plane.
At the same time the sense of self-identity or the consciousness that “I am,” is steadily growing, and the initiate of the day faces the effort to release himself from the thralldom of the senses upon the astral plane, from the dense glamor into which his sensory perception has thrown him, and to establish his freedom by a complete control of the astral body. This he eventually does by developing the power to pass between the pairs of opposites, unaffected by either, and thus leave them behind. He accomplishes this by using the mind as a distributor of the light which reveals the “middle way” and which dissipates the glamor with its brilliance and radiance.
This glamor has steadily deepened and intensified as more and more people have succeeded in resolving the initial physical cleavage and have become centered in the astral consciousness. Today such is the magnitude of this glamor and such the success of the evolutionary process, that humanity, as a whole, is wandering in the fogs and miasmas of the world of sentient consciousness. When I use the word “sentient” I do not refer to the sensory apparatus of the physical nervous system, but to the sentient awareness of the Self which is today so immersed in glamor that the mass of men are entirely identified with the world of feeling, of quality, of sentient interplay, and of emotional reactions, with their likes and dislikes, and their dominant self-pity. Self-pity is one of the major glamors of the advanced and sensitive man. It is the advanced people who contribute the most to the world glamor. The major glamor is the reaction of the aspirant to the truth, to reality when he first becomes aware of that which lies beyond the astral Plane. He interprets all that he there senses and sees in terms of glamor, of emotional understanding, of a sentient fanaticism. He forgets that truth lies beyond the world of feeling altogether, unaffected by it, and can only be sensed in its purity when feeling is transcended and transmuted. The second major glamor is self-pity.
The world today is divided into three groups, all of whom are subject to certain phases of glamor:
1. Those who are Atlantean in their consciousness and are, therefore, completely glimmered by:
- That which is material and to be desired.
- That which they feel in all relationships.
- That which they believe to be ideal, to be true or just, based on their reactions to the thinkers of the day, but which they themselves do not mentally understand.
- That which they demand of beauty, and of emotional comfort.
- That which brings to them spiritual comfort in the realm of religion and religious desire. Note the phrasing.
2. Those who are more definitely Aryan in their consciousness. This means that the mind factor is awakening and thus constituting a difficulty and that the illusions of the mental plane are now added to the glamors of the astral plane. These illusions are theoretical and intellectual in nature.
3. A group of people who are emerging out of those subject to glamor and illusion, and who are alive to the Voice of the Silence and to the demands of the soul.
The complexity of the modern psychological problem lies in the fact that our race and period sees the synthesis of all the glamors and the emergence of the illusions of the mental plane. Today we have aspirants at all stages of unfoldment, and find the masses recapitulating the different steps upon the evolutionary way, with the lowest layer of the human race definitely Lemurian in their consciousness, even though few in numbers relatively speaking.
Illusion is rapidly growing as the mental power of the race develops, for illusion is the succumbing to the powerful thought-forms which the thinkers of the time and of the immediately preceding age have formulated, and which at the time of their creation constituted the hope of the race. They embodied then the new and emerging ideas by means of which the race was intended to progress. These forms, when old and crystallized, become a menace and a hindrance to the expanding life. The realization of the problems of illusion lies centuries ahead when the race will have left glamor behind, when there will be few Atlantean minded people on the planet, and when there will be no people at all with the Lemurian consciousness. However, as evolution proceeds, things are greatly speeded up, and the time when humanity will be predominantly distinguished by the Aryan consciousness, is not as far ahead as might be generally supposed. I speak not in terms of the Aryan race as it is generally understood today or in its Nordic implications.