Self-pity: A Compilation

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.

Source: Glamor – A World Problem



Self-pity. To this all disciples are prone. Their lives are necessarily difficult and they are more sensitive than the average. They are also being constantly tried and tested in this particular direction. Self-pity is a powerful and deluding force; it exaggerates every condition and isolates a person in the center of his own life and the dramatic situations evoked in his own thoughts. It permits two kinds of glamour to enter: First of all, the glamour of special training wherein the disciple overestimates his importance in ratio to the testing applied and his reaction to it. This is not one of your failings. Your sane humility is a great asset, provided you do not give way to self-deprecation. The second is the glamour produced by such a deep self-interest that the disciple is isolated in a cloud of his own thoughts so that the light of his soul is shut out; he sees things in wrong proportion and the glamour of his isolation in his trouble, and sometimes a fixed idea of persecution descends upon him.

Source: Discipleship in the New Age I



Speak not of self. Pity not thy fate. The thoughts of self and of thy lower destiny prevent the inner voice of thine own soul from striking upon thine ear. Speak of the soul; enlarge upon the plan; forget thyself in building for the world. Thus is the law of form offset. Thus can the rule of love enter upon that world.

Source: A Treatise on White Magic



I am going to ask you to study for six months the words “a trained indifference” and each morning to do the Review on Indifference, prior to assuming the duties of the day. For you, indifference holds the key to release – release from personality control and reactions, release from self-pity, release from physical and emotional limitations. Your problem is not to get rid of difficulties but simply to be indifferent as to whether they exist or not.

Source: Discipleship in the New Age I



Until aspirants grasp this essential fact and happily settle down to a life of service and of giving lovingly in their own homes, they can make no progress. Until the path of life is trodden, happily, silently and with no self-pity in the home circle, no other lesson or opportunity will be given. Many very well-meaning aspirants need also to understand that they themselves are responsible for many of the difficulties which they encounter. Puzzled as to why they seem to evoke so much antagonism from those around them, they complain of meeting with no sympathetic response as they attempt to lead the spiritual life, to study, read and think. The reason can usually be found in the fact of their spiritual selfishness. They talk too much about their aspirations, and about themselves. Because they fail in their first responsibility, they find no understanding reaction to their demand for time to meditate. It must be recognized that they are meditating. The house must be quiet; they must not be disturbed; no one must break in on them. None of these difficulties would arise if aspirants would remember two things: First, that meditation is a process carried on secretly, silently and regularly in the secret temple of a man’s own mind. Secondly, that much can be done if people would not talk so much about what they are doing. We need to walk silently with God, to keep ourselves, as personalities, in the background; to organize our lives in such a way that we can live as souls, giving due time to the culture of our souls, yet at the same time preserving a sense of proportion, retaining the affection of those around us, and fulfilling perfectly our responsibilities and obligations. Self-pity and too much talk are the rocks on which many an aspirant temporarily founders.

Source: From Bethlehem to Calvary



What […] is the cause of your condition? What lies at the root of your malaise (as the Latins call it)? What leads to your sense of physical ill and to the gloom and depression with which you greet the world? Just the glamour of pre-occupation – an intense pre-occupation with yourself. If I should call this attitude “self-pity,” will you accept it and use your intelligent mind to reason yourself out of your impasse?


Disciples need to learn discrimination in the use of the instruments which they should use to free themselves from limitations and liabilities. There is too much loose talking re “calling in the soul” or similar terms. Yet it is not the soul which must be called in; for you, the use of the mental processes (which you possess in full measure for your need) will clarify the issue. Reason out the causes of your sense of frustration and of blocking – both materially and spiritually. Specify to yourself the nature of your grievances against life and place before yourself your paralleling sources of content. Cultivate a sense of the relative values, comparing your life of adequate possibility of expression, your wherewithal to provide the three necessities of life (a roof, food and warmth) and your environing conditions with those which today face countless millions and in which and through which they must triumph. Where is your triumph, my brother? Initiation is a process of graded triumphs and I seek to aid you towards that process.

Source: Discipleship in the New Age I



Self-pity, so prevalent a trouble, leads to acute indigestion, to intestinal trouble, to catarrh and head colds in the average person, whilst in the more advanced man it leads to chronic bronchial difficulties, gastric ulcers and unhealthy conditions connected with the teeth and the ears.

Source: Esoteric Healing



It is through acquiescence that the astral aspect of the personality is brought into line with the divine purpose of the indwelling soul. This is not, a negative, weak submission, or a sad, sweet acceptance, so-called, of the will of God, but it is a positive, dynamic assumption of a certain position or attitude upon the battlefield of life. This attitude recognizes rightly, as did Arjuna, the demands of both armies (the army of the Lord and the army of the Personality) and whilst acquiescing in the facts of the case, the disciple stands up and fights as best he may for the privilege of right understanding and right activity. Just as the soul in far off days acquiesced, and gave the touch of acquiescence in the obligation assumed when the approach of appropriation took place and the demands of the personality upon the soul became steadily more definite, so now the personality reverses the process, and recognizes the demands of the soul. This marks, as may well be seen, a very definite stage in the life of the aspirant, and is the cause of that unhappy sense of duality which produces distress and sorrow in the life of all disciples. It is at this point upon the Way that many very well-meaning disciples fall. Instead of standing in spiritual being and taking a firm position upon the middle way between the pairs of opposites, and thus intensifying the touch of appropriation and endeavoring to make the approach of acquiescence, they fall into the illusions of self-pity. These prevent the process of appropriation. A furious conflict then ensues in the endeavor to change the theme of their lives, and the disciples forget that that theme is the embodiment of the Word of their souls in any particular incarnation, and that no theme – calling as it does, particular conditions into being – could provide the right and needed circumstances for full and complete development. They become so occupied with the theme that they forget the composer of that theme.

Source: Esoteric Psychology II



As we consider these happenings, the particular test which Christ now encountered becomes clear in our minds. It was again a threefold test, as was that after the Baptism initiation; but this time it was of a far subtler nature. He was faced with the test as to whether He could endure and handle worldly success, and pass along the triumphant way of His entry into the Holy City, without deviating from His purpose, without being attracted by material achievement and by being acclaimed King of the Jews. Success constitutes a far more drastic disciplining, and produces many more opportunities to forget God and reality than do failure and neglect. Self-pity, a sense of martyrdom, and resignation are potent and effective ways of handling one’s failure. But to rise upon the crest of the wave, to be accorded public recognition, and to seem to have achieved the earthly goal are far more difficult factors to face. These Christ did face, and He faced them with spiritual poise and with that farsighted wisdom which produces a correct sense of values and a proper sense of proportion.

Source: From Bethlehem to Calvary



I tell you also assuredly that – for you – the cultivation of harmlessness is the guarantee of a constructive outcome to your crisis this coming spring. In my last instruction I urged you to eliminate self-pity and this would then produce a harmless handling of the personality. The elimination of criticism will render you harmless where others are concerned and the refusal to be suspicious will dispel your particular glamour, which amounts almost to hallucination. So you see, my brother, that I am only re-emphasizing my earlier teaching to you. Of its value, I know you are assured and in voicing the expression of your need, I am only voicing your own deepest wish.

Source:  Discipleship in the New Age I



In the last analysis, my brother, we bring about the correct distribution of force, leading to harmonious relations, when we seek to live selflessly. For the probationer, this means an imposed selfless activity upon the physical plane. For the accepted disciple, it involves a life free from all selfish, self-centered emotion, and of these self-pity and self-dramatization are outstanding examples; for the initiate it means a mental attitude which is devoid of selfish thought, and free from the dramatizations in thought of the ego.

Source:  Esoteric Healing



Silence, serenity and loving service to all, without exception and without thought of self – these should be the keynotes of your life during the coming months. Restlessness and resentment, self-pity and suspicion are your present problems. Substitute love for these and all will be well.

Source: Discipleship in the New Age  I



I have stated that the first requirement is sensitivity. What exactly is this? It does not mean primarily that you are a “sensitive soul” – the connotation of which usually means that you are thin-skinned, self-centered and always on the defensive! Rather do I refer to the capacity whereby you are enabled to expand your consciousness so that you become aware of ever-widening ranges of contact. I refer to the ability to be alive, alert, keen to recognize relationships, quick to react to need, mentally, emotionally and physically attentive to life and rapidly developing the power to observe upon all three planes in the three worlds simultaneously. I am not interested in your personal relations where they concern your wrong personality sensitivity to depression, to self-pity, your defenses, your so-called sensitivity to slights, to misunderstandings, your dislike of your environing conditions, your hurt pride and qualities of this kind. These all cause you bewilderment and let loose in you the floodgates of compassion for yourself. But you do not need me to deal with them; of them you are well aware and can handle them if you choose. These faults are interesting only in so far as they affect the life of your group; they must be handled by you with care and with the open eye that senses danger from afar and seeks to avoid it. The sensitivity which I want to see developed is alertness to soul contact, impression-ability to the “voice of the Teacher,” an aliveness to the impact of new ideas and to the delicacy of intuitional responsiveness. These are ever the hallmark of the true disciple. It is spiritual sensitivity which must be cultivated; this is only truly possible when you learn to work through the centers above the diaphragm and to transmute solar plexus activity (which is so dominant in the average person) , turning it into heart activity and the service of your fellow men.

Source: Discipleship in the New Age I



Let the plan itself mould your life and its activities and let discipline produce the instrument which is needed for the work to be done. Groups of disciples today are being trained in telepathic work and are rendering telepathic service to the world – a tiny replica of the work which the Hierarchy is ever doing with the minds of men. Thus, when you start to do this, you can work to change conditions and to affect certain lives. This work will not be truly possible where criticism, self-pity or wrong speech exist, for one person could block the outflow of the group thought.

Source: Discipleship in the New Age I



Temper, which is so characteristic of the Bull, must give place to directed spiritual energy, for temper is but energy run wild in the interests of the personality; blindness (for the Bull is blind for much of its career) must give place to vision and the right focus of the sight and this will finally dispel the self-engendered illusions and glamors of the aspirant; self-pity, which is the effect of a constant concentration on the frustration of desire in the personality life, must be succeeded by compassion for all humanity, and this must be developed into the selfless service of the salvaging initiate.

Source: Esoteric Astrology



Eliminate self-pity. All that comes to you is the working of the law and offers opportunity. Cultivate happiness through understanding. I mean not jocoseness and jollity.

Source: Discipleship in the New Age I



Steady care and control of the emotional body. This is the most difficult of the vehicles to tend, as is well known. No excessive emotion is permitted, though strong currents of love for all that breathe are allowed to sweep through. Love, being the law of the system, is constructive and stabilizing, and carries all on in line with the law. No fear or worry or care shake the emotional body of the aspiring servant of all. He cultivates serenity, stability, and a sense of secure dependence on God’s law. A joyous confidence characterizes his habitual attitude. He harbors no jealousy, no cloudy grey depression, and no greed or self-pity, but – realizing that all men are brothers and that all that is exists for all – he proceeds calmly on his way.

Source: Letters on Occult Meditation



The adept speaks no word which can hurt, harm or wound. Therefore he has had to learn the meaning of speech in the midst of life’s turmoil. He wastes no time in self pity or self justification for he knows the law has placed him where he is, and where he best can serve, and has learnt that difficulties are ever of a man’s own making and the result of his own mental attitude. If the incentive to justify himself occurs he recognizes it as a temptation to be avoided. He realizes that each word spoken, each deed undertaken and every look and thought has its effect for good or for evil upon the group.

Source: A Treatise on White Magic



The thing that can wreck the building work, which your group is intended to do, is the violence of your reactions and vibrations when you are emotionally upset (and this is of frequent occurrence) and the furious self-assertion whereby you endeavor to justify such violence, and your dramatic self-pity. Unless you can learn to decentralize yourself, and cease this constant self-thought and self-commiseration under all circumstances, and stop visualizing yourself at all times as in the center – yourself as the worker, yourself as the group member, yourself as the sufferer from others’ misunderstandings and mistakes, yourself as of importance – and learn to see yourself as you truly are, you can and do hinder the work and imperil the future constructive work of the group.

Source: Discipleship in the New Age I

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