This is a transcription of an audio lecture from The Secret Path of Initiation, originally given live at the Gnostic Academy of Chicago.
So throughout history, divinity has expressed itself to humanity in a variety of forms. We see the world’s great religions. We also hear about many spiritual movements that have taken place across time. And as humanity changes, as languages change, as people migrate to new places, we often lose touch with the old forms, but that light of divinity remains active and alive, and moving. And at different points in time, this light of divinity can become more active in certain places, in certain cultures. Now, that is not to mean that it does not exist in other cultures. It just moves its activity depending on certain contexts.
What we know is that God or divinity, however we like to conceive it in our mind, is a very living force. It is a universal force. It is a force of life, and love, and wisdom, and truth.
In our Gnostic teachings, we often use the commonly known word of Christ as the title of that universal force. But Christ is not just one individual, Jesus Christ for example, but it is actually the wisdom, and the love, and the intelligence that can express itself through a human being who is properly prepared. And we call these human beings masters or prophets, buddhas, Christs: these titles for an individual who has reached that level of self-realization—to be able to express more purely at their own degree, the love and the wisdom of divinity, the teachings to help humanity.
So in the gnostic teachings we have to understand that the light of divinity that touches each one of us, and that reaches out to each one of us is beyond any one form, any school or doctrine. These schools, these movements and these spiritual groups, and religions can be the vehicle through which God can express in multiple times and places. But if we just attend a school and we do not ourselves enter personally into contact and connection with our own inner connection to divinity, we do not experience what we call initiation.
The Definition of Initiation
Initiation is the beginning. To initiate means to start. And when we enter into initiation, we enter into a new birth, a spiritual birth, a spiritual growth. And this is something that does not have anything to do with schools, or titles that are given to you, or sold by different movements. But it is something that is deeply within ourselves. It is a profound growth and evolution of the human soul.
And, when we experience that, we change as a person. Not just externally, by acting in a different way, or hanging out with different kinds of people, but actually by our quality of presence, by the wisdom and love that we are able to express, by the way that we encounter situations and respond to them. We will notice that we are deeply changing because we do not force it, but naturally, we are evolving, we are growing as a soul, as a being. In a deeper way than to just externally achieve a kind of social rank, or spiritual title from a given community.
Contacting and Experiencing Divinity
How do we come into contact with that universal light of divinity? All of us at one point of time have experienced this. Maybe it has been as simple as going outside to a beautiful, natural scene and feeling that awe and that beauty within that is spontaneous to the human soul. Or perhaps is when we truly loved someone, purely and from the deepest part of our heart.
That is a form of experience that changes a person. And sometimes this can be little ways that we are changing. And sometimes it can be a more profound spiritual awakening, an experience where we really feel that connection to our inner divinity. Or maybe we have a mystical experience, an out-of-body experience for example, a near death experience, as we hear many people talk about. And that will change people in a profound level.
When we experience that, we are actually using a type of sense unrelated to our physical senses. So, we have five physical senses through which we experience the world as gateways that energy can come through and be processed. But there is also a sense within us, a spiritual sense: our imagination, our soul, our intuition, our ability to perceive something divine. And the more we awaken those spiritual faculties, the more that we are able to perceive things that are beyond just the physical level, that are beyond just physical nature, in a more energetic, more spiritual, more subtle and refined levels of nature.
These are still material in a sense, but not in the gross, physical material that we are used to experiencing with our physical touch. And so, as we awaken on deeper levels, we can even awaken out of our body. When we go to sleep physically, we can remain awake in the dream state with full consciousness, able to control what we do and where we go.
And all these kinds of spiritual gifts are often what people associate with initiation: to be able to awaken spiritual powers like telepathy or clairvoyance or prophecy, to be able to see the future, or to hear the word of divinity within us, so that we can share that light with others or to see what steps we need to take in our own life, to become better people.
So, if we want these types of powers, we often go to different schools and different places that promise us that they will enroll us in a certain course, and we will advance through degree to degree to degree, and be initiated and become masters, or become self-realized.
But as I mentioned previously, what we really want is the external validation from any other person, but that inner experience, that inner knowledge, that connection with divinity through which we know we are really growing as a soul and that we are really understanding life in a more profound way that decreases our suffering, and decreases the suffering of people around us. So we have the ability to understand other people and to help them. And most importantly is to begin by helping ourselves and understanding ourselves, to touch the truth of who we are.
The Practicality of Aquarian Gnosis
In this time, we have these Gnostic teachings as taught by Samael Aun Weor and the instructors and students of his tradition, which we call the Fifth Gospel [which explains the significance and secret meanings of the Four Gospels from the conservative Piscean Era]. This is the same light that has expressed itself throughout humanity’s history through many religions and that is why in this teaching, we discuss various religions and we talk about how their essence is the same. And how their essence is a practical teaching that each of us must strive to experience for ourselves. Not merely to learn it intellectually, or to take it as a belief, but to actually, practically experience it by using those spiritual faculties which awaken when we feel love, or awe for nature, or that genuine intuition within our divinity.
That’s why this Fifth Gospel is a very practical teaching. And if we really want to experience initiation, we have to be well prepared. Throughout history, when the ancient mystery schools in Egypt or Greece, or all around the world, in ancient Tibet as well, were going to take an aspirant into the secret teachings, they would prepare them rigorously for decades, to make sure that this person had purity of heart. They had worked to eliminate their vices and to practice virtue, and were skillful in meditation, awakening their concentration and awareness to be able to go deep within.
Now, the Age of Aquarius has brought this new doctrine which openly gives the secret teachings, or at least a degree of them, so that anyone can enter into these practices immediately, and that is because all of us are well aware that the state of our world is becoming more chaotic. The crises that are impacting humanity are greater than ever. And there is just not enough time for all of us to go often to the mountains for twenty or thirty years in order to become really prepared.
But that puts the burden on all of us: to decide if we are truly going to commit to our spiritual growth. If this is truly something that we want to take seriously, then we have to take serious steps. It is not a practice that can be entered into at a whim. It is a very serious commitment of the soul, which has ramifications whether for good or for bad. So, if we make this decision, we have to work on our own level in order to progress, but constantly being progressing in the direction of improvement of virtue, of getting closer to divinity, and further away from the selfishness and the vice which has characterized much of humanity, and as all of us are well aware, characterizes much of our own lives.
The Conservation of Energy and Spiritual Awakening
And so, when we talk about initiation, as I mentioned, we are talking about an essential change, a change in the quality of our soul, and the birth of our soul is only possible when we are working with our own energy.
Each day we expend a tremendous amount of energy: emotionally, intellectually, physically and even consciously, our willpower. So, when take the step to become aware of our actions each day, and to meditate or reflect, in the evenings, on what we have done that day, how we are living our lives: are we living ethically, or are we really getting caught up in superfluous things that will pass away and not have much value to us in the future?
We can evaluate how we are using our energy. If we want to awaken spiritually, we have to really conserve our energy.
The reason that all the great religions taught ethical principles, or commandments, or rules for us to follow, is not because, arbitrarily, we need to do what someone else tells us to do, but because these principles, these ways of living an upright life actually change our energetic quality of being. If you have ever been around an angry person whether they are talking or not, you can feel that quality of their being. And if you have ever been around somebody who is truly loving, maybe they are expressing love to you, you felt that power of their being.
This is a spiritual energy that we are trying to cultivate. When we work with principles of honesty, selflessness, charity, chastity, and humility, we are actually cultivating a level of being that conserves energy and transforms it inwardly, to awaken our consciousness.
But when we engage in anger and envy, and all these other vices that have to with a false self, a false sense of self that needs to be defended at any cost, but which is just a figment of our own mind, that is when we lose our energy. We compromise our inner values. And we in essence forfeit our soul and our integrity for temporary gains, for that false self.
The Role of Kundalini, Initiation, and Spiritual Knowledge
Nāgārjuna was a Buddhist teacher and a great master, a great initiate. And we can tell as we look at this image of Nāgārjuna here that he is an initiate. Does anyone know why we can see in this image he is a master? There is a symbolism to this image.
Yes, the serpents. So, behind his head we see seven serpents. I am going to talk a little bit later about the structure of initiation. But simply put these seven serpents represent that he has mastered the seven initiations of Major Mysteries. This is a very high level of development. Raising the serpents.
Has anyone heard about Kundalini before? So, Kundalini is symbolized as a serpent rising up our spine. And this is because, as an initiate, we learn to work with that energy that we are conserving, to transform that energy up the spine into the brain, into the pineal gland, in particular, to awaken our consciousness. This awakens our spiritual faculties which are innate in all of us. But for many of us have become a bit atrophied over time.
This awakens our ability to become wiser, more compassionate to human beings, and to perceive our reality beyond the shell of our mind, and our false self.
As Nāgārjuna point out to us here, he stated that:
"All philosophies are mental fabrications. There has never been a single doctrine by which one could enter the true essence of things." —Nāgārjuna
Sometimes people say that this type of statement means, “I don’t need any spiritual teachings. I don’t need to read any books. I can achieve awakening by myself.” And this is true that there are some masters who are illiterate, but for many of us we can actually benefit from practical teachings that guide us and that help us to realize where we may be imbalanced, or which techniques we may be able to use to gain some energy, to gain some strength, to then do our spiritual work, to then enter into the essence of things.
But if we just read books or if we go to a church or a temple, and we go through the motions of prayer or spiritual practice, but we ourselves never feel that connection, that power, that inner spark of divinity calling to us, then we are not truly growing internally.
We may externally receive some amount of recognition. But when we go to the end of our life, and we evaluate the quality of our quality of being, we may feel empty. We may feel that we have created as Christ said, the whitened sepulcher, which on the outside looks beautiful and holy, but in the inside is dead.
And so, what we want is the spiritual birth. We want to enter into the true essence of things, the true essence of ourselves, the true essence of nature and reality, and the true essence of divinity. All of which are essentially one and the same.
Conscience, Discernment and Internal Judgment of the Soul
Another great master, Swami Sivananda gave us this practical teaching:
“The intelligent or wise one has to discriminate within and advance by himself towards his own goal, his own self, while also searching for the emancipation of others.” —Swami Sivananda
It is not about following anyone who claims to be a master, but truly studying in an effort to awaken your own inner discrimination, to find the teachings that resonate with you, that call to you and that awaken your own inner judgment.
Many of us have been in situations where we feel a pang of conscience, when we are about to tell a lie and a part of us says: “Mmm… maybe I should just tell the truth!” But then our mind begins to rationalize and to say: “Why? Well, but I’m lying for a good reason. I have a good intention for doing this unethical thing. In the end, I might be able to work things out and brush it over and get away with it.”
For some of us, maybe it has been many years since we felt that pang of conscience. But we all have some direct experience of our inner judgment, that discernment. And this is really important as we try to prepare ourselves for initiation. Because, as I mentioned, it is not about any external master saying to you that you are ready. It is about your Internal God, your own inner divinity teaching you, and awakening you, and helping you to grow as a father and mother would a young child.
And as a soul, we need to be behaving in a certain kind of way through which we demonstrate the maturity within ourselves to our own inner divinity, that we are willing to learn, that we are humble to learn and to change as people.
That is something that only each of us can know. We have guidelines, we have general principles in all the world religions that we are all familiar with and which we can use as a great starting place to gain our bearings, to begin living more ethically. But it is really when we are in a situation and we are observant of ourselves, in the quality of our action, and we act on a vice, and we see the effect of that, and we see how that affects other people and affects us, and create problems in our life. Versus when we do something virtuous, and we see how that ripples towards other people and changes our own quality of being and gives us a sense of peace with ourselves.
So, as we begin to evaluate ourselves, regardless of what other people’s judgments about us may be, we have to be very severe with ourselves, and very honest with ourselves. We have to really see in our life: “What are the places where I have compromised myself? And maybe at that time, I did it for what I thought were good reasons. But now I realize that it was really a mistake and that I am missing something of value to me, part of my own soul that I want to reclaim. And what steps can I begin to take to gradually put my life back in order, to get myself back to the place where I feel that I am a person that I can respect, an individual with character that is noble or virtuous?”
Or at least striving to that point, because of course, we know this is not something that just happens magically overnight, but it is an effort of the soul that takes tremendous super efforts, day to day, to be continually honest with ourselves and to see where we have shortcomings, where we have anger, greed, gluttony or lust, that is creating problems, that is actually creating suffering. And not because someone else tells us this is creating suffering for us, but because we repeated these behaviors again and again and again and we know that they lead us to the same unfortunate places.
When we truly begin to work towards ourselves and understand deeply our own suffering, we begin to see how other people that we love and cherish around us are also suffering. That many people are controlled by their anger or their greed, or their fear, their insecurity and that they live their lives completely controlled by these negative states of mind and they do not understand how to access the power within themselves, to begin to take control over their lives and to access a higher state of being: a state of being that is within the spirit, that has faith not as a mere belief or good intention but truly by directly knowing that what we are doing will produce peace and happiness for themselves.
And so this come even more crucial for us as we search for the emancipation of others from their suffering, that we really work to liberate ourselves from our own negativity and our own problematic behaviors and delusional states of mind.
Identity, Illusion, and Conflicts with Reality
When I say a delusional state of mind, I mean the mental cage within which we often imprison ourselves. We hold to one belief so strongly. Maybe it is a belief about ourselves. Maybe we believe we are a certain type of person and if someone comes across us who shows us otherwise, who disagrees with us, or who insults us. We cannot help but suffer and be upset and argue or fight, or react in some strong way to that situation.
That is all because we have a belief. We have an idea in our mind about who we are. And when we notice challenges, we do not want to see reality. We want to refute reality. We want to argue with reality and observe that this idea that “What I believe is the truth and everyone else is wrong!”
And we just do not have ideas about ourselves, but many ideas about how other people are. Maybe many grudges against other people that “Well, you’re always this way. This is just the way that you’re gonna be!” Or ideas about life and maybe some of them are more cynical ideas that really good people don’t make it out in the end. “Maybe it’s only the bad people that really get what they want in life.” Or maybe we have nice beliefs, but that don’t actually produce fruit in our life.
So, we have to evaluate our beliefs and we do not necessarily have to throw all them all out right away, but we have to see them for what they are. We must have this discrimination. We must identify how beliefs in our life are a filter through which we are not able to perfectly perceive the reality beyond our mind.
Meditation, Introspection, and Inner Discrimination
Anybody who has tried to meditate and silence the mind knows that in the beginning the mind is very chaotic and that is often hard to actually achieve that stability and that quiet of mind through which we can hear any inner voice of the silence as many call that spiritual wisdom.
Much of this has to do with how we behave in our physical life. If we are constantly distracted in our physical life for behaving unethically, we are producing imbalances energetically in our mind and in our consciousness. They make it nearly impossible for us to be able to meditate. And we may develop a high degree of concentration, but we may not feel that we are accessing that inner wisdom, because we do not have that balance. We are not vibrating at that level in which we can be in tune with that.
It’s really essential for us that we try to not only meditate daily or regular—to an amount that is reasonable for us where we are at—but also that we try to behave ethically and become aware of the way that our mind acts during the day, ad how we become distracted.
These are the beginning steps to develop inner discrimination. To be able to see, first of all, our own mind for what it is, and to question our own mind. To separate our own consciousness from the mind. To know that we are not these thoughts, but that we are the perceiver of these thoughts. We are not these emotions, but we are the perceiver of these emotions, and the perceiver of our physical life. And that we have the power to free ourselves from the negative thoughts, and negative emotions, even to have the power to free ourselves from the suffering of our negative life experiences by changing our conscious attitude towards it, and by behaving in new ways that are inspired by our inner wisdom, rather than inspired by our fear or our envy, or anger or greed.
Exercise to Awaken Inner Judgment
When we need to awaken this type of judgment, when we realize that we lost the ability to discriminate within ourselves, we have a special practice in the Gnostic teachings that comes from The Magic of the Runes by Samael Aun Weor. But I wanted to read this excerpt for you about the Rune Rita which can you see pictured here, on the slide.
“The present runic practice has the power of liberating internal judgment. We need to convert ourselves into judges of consciousness. To awaken the Buddhata (the seed of our own Buddha nature), the soul, is urgent. This rune has the power of awakening the consciousness of the judges. Let us remember what is called remorse, which certainly is the accusing voice of the consciousness.” —Samael Aun Weor, The Magic of the Runes
So, a lot of us have an accusing voice of self-criticism or we are evaluating ourselves according to standards of how others may view us. But this is very different from the genuine remorse of the soul, and the conscience, which tell us right from wrong, which in the moment when we are about to lie tugs at us and say: “Can you behave in a better way? Can you just tell the truth and put this bad behavior aside?” Or whatever that might be. Maybe it is not a lie. Maybe it is something else.
But we know that in some cases, what is the right behavior would be the wrong behavior in another circumstance. And that is why is so important to just not blanket a code of conduct, but to really develop our awakened sense of what is right and wrong. To re-awaken it, I should say, because as children I think many of us are more in touch with this. But the more that we act on bad behaviors—and our mind justifies it or gives a really great reason for why we should continue in this route—the further away we get from our inner conscience.
That is why we want to work with this runic practice, to work with this energy of nature, the energy of our own internal judge, our own inner divinity, which can help us to remember remorse. To remember the part of us that has a great spiritual value, and which suffers tremendously when we compromise it for things which, spiritually, are not of value. Whether that is money or recognition, or relationships, or social status, or a worldly success.
It is not that these things are bad in themselves, but if we have to compromise what we believe as right in order to get these things, we are losing a part of our soul. And that part of our soul we may have to work much harder and later on to reclaim. Each of us has to make the decision for ourselves on where we strike that balance of meeting our worldly needs, but doing so in a way that we feel is contributing for something good or a value to the rest of humanity. Or in whatever way we have a particular talent.
When we begin to steer off that course, and when we begin to take those steps into a different, which causes us suffering, that we feel that remorse, in order to re-evaluate: “Is this the path that I want to take or are there a variety of other responses that I can bring up, and think of, to this situation, some of which may help me to feel more peace with myself?”
And Samael Aun Weor goes on to describe this rune:
“Those who never feel remorse are truly very far from their interior judge. Commonly, they are lost cases. People like that must work very intensely with the Rune Rita, thus they will liberate their interior judgement. We need with urgency to learn to be guided by the voice of the silence, that is to say, by the innermost judge.” —Samael Aun Weor, The Magic of the Runes
Within each of us, we have an individualized connection to that universal force of divinity, which as I mentioned earlier, we call the universal consciousness of Christ in this particular tradition. Each of us has our inner spirit, our Innermost God that is our Father or our Mother that is helping us to grow as a soul.
When we hear the voice of the silence, we are hearing that powerful, direct experience of our own inner judgment, of our own inner wisdom, which is guiding us in our life. What we need to do next to continue to learn and grow and flourish as a soul, what we need to do is to perhaps make up for the error of our ways.
And now, this particular rune, we are going to practice—as I mentioned, if you stick around from the meditation afterwards—we will just try it three times. But simply put, you will stand with your left hand on your hip, and your left leg out to make the shape of an “R.” And then you will repeat:
Another Instructor: The mantras RA, RE, RI, RO, RU.
Instructor: Each time you pronounce the mantras RA, RE, RI, RO, RU, each of those vowels you are going to hold them for one long breath. What is important is not so much to focus on the vocalization, but to feel that energy, that current within in us, in the spine vibrating throughout our whole body and awakening our consciousness, giving strength to the consciousness, to the soul.
Working with this type of energy transforms the forces in nature, takes them into our own body and helps our consciousness to awaken and have more strength.
So, we will talk more about his later, but I felt his very important in relationship to preparation for initiation because, frankly, if we do not have our conscience awake, if we do not have to ability to discriminate by ourselves, it is easy to become lost in the sea of life—and in the multitude of spiritual movements and masters, and to no longer have that sight of our inner compass that guide us in our own growth, in our inner development. So, that is why it is truly urgent to awaken that.
Additionally, when we do awaken this, we have to act on it. We have to really follow our inner judge, our Inner God, because that will help us to achieve sanctity of our mind and heart.
The Sanctity of Mind and Heart
The purity of the mind and heart is a prerequisite for spiritual initiation. Now, what we are talking about is an initiation in Christ, in which, degree by degree, we begin to incarnate our own inner spirit more and more, and to express according to our level of development, divinity as it manifests in us. And if we do not have a temple in mind, heart, and body in which divinity can rest, because we are vibrating at an antithetical level of being, then we cannot enter into initiation.
Many people are able to develop spiritual powers, to awaken out of their bodies, to work with energy or concentration and all these practices, but they are awakening in a very egotistical way. In a way that strengthens the mind and that strengthens our desires, and many of these desires are desires to overpower other people, to make other people see things the way we want them to be. To gain more influence, to make people like us more or to have more success in our worldly affairs, but not necessarily for good reasons—not to want to have success in our worldly affairs to truly help people, even if that is what we tell ourselves. But maybe our intention on a deeper level is more selfish.
And so, that is why each one of us can really determine if we are awakening in a positive way towards God, if we are lessening the sense of our false self and we are really awakening more wisdom and compassion. Or if we are strengthening our sense of self and our sense of pride as an individual, and we are only wanting to accumulate more power and more knowledge in order to gain our selfish ends.
And that is why Samael Aun Weor teaches in the book The Major Mysteries:
“We need to have the mind of a child in order to enter into the Major Mysteries. We need to be like children in our minds and hearts. We need to be perfect as our Father who is in the heaven is perfect. The great mysteries are not achievable through vain intellectualisms; the Major Mysteries are achievable with the heart of a child.” —Samael Aun Weor, The Major Mysteries
I know a lot people, a lot spiritual friends who spend much time, whether on the internet or with books, reading and studying about these things. And I myself of course am a very curious person and have read quite a bit about these things, but what is really important is that we can set aside the mental concepts, the intellectual concepts, and we can approach reality as it is, as it presents to us.
In order to do that, we do need a purity of mind. As a child, they can see many things which adults have forgotten how to see. If a child is in a room where his or her parents are fighting, they can see that situation and the pain of that situation in a way in which the parents, who may be identified with their particular perspective, are not able to see anymore. Because now they are caught up in the mind, caught up in the sense of self in the tallies of who did what and “What you have done wrong to me,” and “What I deserve,” and all of these ideas about ourselves that we have developed and strengthened into adulthood.
And so, we become more aware as adults of the many manipulations and complications of adult life, of our modern world, our society. But oftentimes, we are so caught up in this that we confuse them for reality.
Unfortunately, we need to be aware of this in order to navigate society, but society does not have much to do with reality of nature and its existence, and divinity, which is a natural experience that the soul can witness.
So, when I talk about simplicity of mind, we have to be able to not totally give up intellectualism, but to set it aside, to put it in his place. To have the mind become the servant of our spiritual goals, rather than to fortify the mind in order to serve the selfish goals of our desires.
Really, initiation is achieved by the quality of our heart. It is through the merits of our heart that we raise the Kundalini up each vertebrae of the spinal column and it is through the merits of our heart that our own inner Divine Mother, and our Innermost Father and spirit, judge us and determine whether or not we are worthy of genuine spiritual wisdom, powers and abilities and those types of things.
We cultivate this childlike quality the more that we are virtuous and act upon the genuine ideal that we have for ourselves, a spiritual ideal. If you remember as a child what you thought made up a good person, you may be interested in money or those types of things, but really there is a certain character that you might have strived for. And that is the ideal that we want to re-awaken: the best part of us from our childhood, but now with the wisdom of an adult, with the power of an adult, with the choice of an adult, to be able to actually give birth to that.
Psychological Death: The Initiatic Path of Life
Also, we have to die in many ways in order to give birth to that inner child.
I mentioned about our false beliefs, our false ideas about ourselves, the mental prison in which we live and suffer which causes suffering for us, because we cannot understand reality, we cannot understand other people or ourselves.
This is the part that we have to be willing to let go of. That we have to be willing to change. Maybe it is our addictions, which are not necessarily alcohol or drugs, but our addictions to certain behaviors or ways of thinking and living that we know create suffering for us, but that we just cannot seem to break out of.
If we really want to come a more enlightened person, if we really want to work toward the level of development that saints and prophets and masters were able to achieve through their own direct efforts, and through the grace of divinity, then we have to be willing to die to who we are today.
You cannot live in both heaven and hell at the same time. This is about our own psychological state of being. We have to be willing to let go of the way that we have lived, the person that we have been when our inner judgment tells us. That that is not taking us anywhere, but into pain. Then we have to be brave and to take those steps courageously into what we believe as right, in order to really have life. To have that inner power and inner life that gives us real meaning and peace.
So, Samael Aun Weor writes:
“When one enters into gnosis (direct experience of divinity), one has to die in order to live; however, proud intellectual people who have the habit of thinking in accordance to their own whims, vanities and prejudices are not good for these gnostic studies; this is a very difficult enterprise for intellectual people because they only want to stuff their minds with these gnostic studies, and the reality is that gnosis is a very deep functionalism of the consciousness. What we have to do with the mind is to kill it, and thereafter to resurrect it, totally transformed.” —Samael Aun Weor, The Major Mysteries
We want a new quality of mind. For many of us, mind is out of control. It is going in the same directions day after day, repeating the same thoughts, the same worries, the same problems, seeking the same desires day after day just on repeat.
We want to get rid of this old mind, to really fight against it in those moments when we feel that pain of conscience, to not let our mind continue to justify and hypnotize us, but to break free and to allow something new to be born. Because with this new quality of mind, this totally transformed quality of mind, we will have that bright awareness of our experience of life, the quality of mind that can see the best in other people. That can enjoy other people and love other people spontaneously and naturally. That has a wisdom to penetrate into the heart of a situation and to really see its spiritual value, not just its value according to society.
Kundalini Yoga or Sexual Alchemy
In order to do this, we do need to work with a very powerful energy, in a very powerful practice. And in our tradition, we call this sexual alchemy.
Just as with the practice of the Rune Rita, we are working with our creative energies. We recognize that creativity is born of our sexual energy. And that is why the Kundalini rises from the bottom of the spine where our sexual organs are, and whether male or female, we have physical, sexual seed, sperm or ovum. But we also have an energy within that physical seed which can be transformed, which can be raised into the pineal gland, which will awaken the spiritual nature of our soul which will awaken consciousness, which is beyond the mind and beyond the body.
Now, as a single person we have the practices which we can use to awaken sparks of that Kundalini energy. We call these pranayamas, generally speaking, and we can talk more about them [see Gnostic Meditation: Pranayama and Sexual Transmutation], but the one that I primarily teach is just to sit, to focus on that energy, to sit in a meditative comfortable pose, in which the spine is straight or you can lie down if that is more comfortable and to just breathe deeply in trough the nostrils and out through the mouth. And as you are breathing in, visualize that energy as light coming up through the spine into the head, saturating our mind and our pineal gland with that energy, that light, and then breathing out, visualizing that energy moving to the heart.
As simple as that, we can harness the breath, we can harness the energy that is within the breath, and within our body and within nature, and begin to strengthen our consciousness that way.
But as Samael Aun Weor points out here in his quote, we need sexual alchemy in order to really create the bodies of the soul. This is because nothing in nature, whether physical or spiritual, is born without the union of masculine and feminine principles, the activity of masculine and feminine forces. He writes:
“The only objective of the [first] five initiations of Major Mysteries is the fabrication of the solar bodies [the vehicles of the soul]. In Gnosticism and esotericism, one understands that the fabrication of the solar bodies and the incarnation of the Being are known as the Second Birth.” —Samael Aun Weor, Practical Astrology: The Esoteric Treatise of Hermetic Astrology
If we truly want to incarnate the force of our inner spirit, of our internal Christ, that is a frequency which is very, very powerful. We have within us currently astral bodies and mental bodies that can transform mental, emotional, and spiritual energies to a degree. But these are relatively weak and dirty vessels and through which the light of divinity struggles to shine.
Now through the cooperation of male and female, retaining that energy in the body, we are able to create spiritual bodies, spiritual vehicles: a solar physical body, a solar vital body, a solar astral body, a solar mental body, a solar causal body through which divinity can express on all levels.
Now what is important is when we talk about sexual alchemy, we have to retain the sexual, so seed whether male or female, we have to refrain from orgasm, and to transmute that energy upwards. We know that when we let that physical energy out of the body, we produce a physical body. But to harness this energy and to move it inward into the soul, into the consciousness, we can create a spiritual body, a spiritual vessel which is talked about in the Bible as the terrestrial man and the celestial man. We want to create a new type of individual, and so we work with this very powerful energy.
The warning here is that we talked about white initiations, which are initiations into divinity, into the light of Christ, and black initiations through which we awaken in ego. We become demons.
Now, we may be convinced that we have good intentions, and that we are awakening power because we are really becoming great people. But we have to trust our inner judge to determine if we are walking on an egotistical path or the path of light. When we practice White Sexual Alchemy, we are trying to come into connection with our Inner Christ, our inner divinity. And we are working with a very powerful energy.
The outcome of this type of practice is either an angel or demon. So, we will either awaken our own spiritual potential and give birth to our soul, or we will awaken powers, but powers that are demonic, that are entirely engaged in the prison of our false self which grows, and grows, and grows in intensity and increases the suffering of us as an individual and also in others. So we have to really be prepared and really establish our own ethical center before we step into initiation.
So, we will be talking a lot more about sexual alchemy and what is involved with that in the rest of the course, which will be talked about by the other instructors.
The Structure of Initiation
But simply put, to give you an outline, for what initiation is—as we teach it here—this outline is just a framework. Of course, the experience of it is something internal, which is experience in our daily life. In fact, Samael Aun Weor says that “Initiation is life itself intensely lived with rectitude and with love.” It is an inner experience, the development of the hero within our own heart, within our soul. But it is something that we create by the way that we face the ordeals presented to us in physical life.
Sometimes in astral experiences, in our dream state, we may experience ordeals, symbolic ordeals that strengthen us. But many times these are conflicts that we are having in our physical life, or problems which challenge us, exactly in the way that we talked about before, in which we are very tempted to go in a behavior, which we have repeated many times, but which we have the opportunity now to face ourselves, to understand ourselves, to understand why we have gone in wrong direction before, and to take a step in a more positive direction as we see fit.
The Guardian of the Threshold
I separated this chart into four levels or four parts to enter the Major Mysteries. The first is the Guardian of the Threshold. Now, this is described in many traditions as a terrifying beast, which we know in our tradition is the form of our own inner defects. If we looked at ourselves as we truly are, we would see there is a monstrous beast in the mental plane or the astral plane, that we have many vices and many problems, and a lot of suffering within us that we cultivated in and fed our creative energy to throughout this lifetime and even previous lifetimes.
And so, when we face our own ego, we face the Guardian of the Threshold, we are actually breaking our ties with all of the vices that we carry within. Sometimes, this is described, as in Hinduism, as going to battle with our own beloved relatives. Because our vices and our defects are part of ourselves that we very much cling to. And that feels very comfortable for us that we like a lot. And in Hinduism, Arjuna has to go to battle with his own family members who are doing wrong behaviors. And Krishna, which is in Hinduism the representation of Christ, comes to him an says: “You must do your duty. You must go to battle here.”
When we face the Guardian of the Threshold, when we begin to enter into initiation, we begin by breaking all of our ties to the Black Lodge, the Black Lodge being a representation of the black path of initiation, which is the path of vice and selfishness.
And we make a commitment to really go against ourselves because we are own worst enemy. So, this is about taking on and battling ourselves. And if we defeat the inner guardian, we have not fully destroyed, but if we defeat it, then we become the master of our energy. We begin to be able to have more power, more self-control in situations.
But if we fail in this ordeal, then the Guardian of the Threshold becomes our master and our ego dictates how we will live our life, and creates more suffering for us.
Of course, we can battle again, and again, and again. So, we have to be persistent if we fail.
The Four Ordeals of the Elements
The next step is the four ordeals of the elements: air, fire, water and earth.
These elements come to us through many situations in our life.
Air is often associated with instability, with the loss of what one loves, maybe the loss of the job, in which we face a total uncertainty in life and this forces us to develop a quality of consciousness which is unattached, which is able to continue on even in spite of losing stability. We have a lot of movement. And this develops and helps us to balance our consciousness in that area.
And the next area in which we need to balance our consciousness or our state of being will be fire, which causes in the ordeals an emotional pain. Criticism from others is often a common ordeal of fire in which we have to respond with the right temperature. Sweetness in many cases is hard to develop in the face of criticism. And so, after we balance our nature to be firm when we must be firm. And to be soft, and gentle, and sweet when we must be. And to not be completely controlled by how other people behave or what the external situation is, but to really have a level of being in ourselves in which we have control over our response.
The next area in which we balance the consciousness is water, which is often a very emotional ordeal in that we feel overwhelmed. We are thrown into social circumstances in life, which overwhelm us or force to adapt. Or radically adapt: maybe after moving to a new place, and really radically being able to adapt to a new situation.
And finally earth, which helps us to develop the stability and the perseverance of the soul in response to obstacles and difficulties in our life.
The Initiations of Minor Mysteries
After we have made the commitment to the path, and the Guardian of the Threshold in that battle, and then we balance our own consciousness in the four ordeals of the elements, then we begin the initiations of the Minor Mysteries.
Now, there are nine initiations of the Minor Mysteries which relate with nine spheres of the Kabbalistic Tree of Life, if you are familiar with Judaic mysticism.
But what is important is to understand that these Minor Mysteries are different ordeals in our physical life, which may have these qualities of the different elements, but which ultimately test our ability to persevere and to remain true to our spiritual goal, in spite of many temptations and challenges which call us off of the path.
It is often called the probationary path because we must pass this before we truly enter into the initiations of the Major Mysteries in which we are giving birth to the soul.
Now, a single person can progress through all of three of these parts of the initiatic path [the Guardian of the Threshold, the four ordeals of the elements, and the Minor Mysteries]: the entrance into the initiatic path. But in order to enter into the initiations of the Major Mysteries, in which we give birth to the solar bodies, the solar vehicles, we must be married. We must be working with our spouse in Sexual Alchemy.
As I mentioned, we are going to talk a lot more about that, and all of these different faces of initiation in future lectures.
What I really want to emphasize and summarize in this preparation for initiation is that is completely up to us to enter into initiation. Each person, regardless of their culture or their religious background, or their upbringing, or their current physical situation in life, has within the main connection to their inner divinity—has a spark of conscience which can be fed and strengthened. And each of us has within us an inner Father and Mother that want us to grow spiritually.
The whole purpose of our existence physically is for us to realize a certain spiritual truth about ourselves: to have an understanding of nature, and reality, and divinity, and ourselves. And oftentimes we are so distracted and hypnotized by the many things that we must keep up with in society, that we forget about the real reason why we are alive.
So, to take the time to really assess our current situation in life in meditation, and to really evaluate the different areas of our life that we spend most of our time and energy and to see where we have compromised our values, and to begin to take steps back to where we really believe we are leaving our spiritual dignity and integrity as a person—that is the preparation for initiation.
And when we couple that with preservation and the purity of our sexual energy through transmutation, then we are really knocking on the door to enter into initiation. And our inner divinity, and all of these masters—that we have talked about in religions, which still exist in the spiritual nature of our reality—will come. The masters of the White Lodge, the prophets, you know, whichever spiritual master that you resonate with can help you, can aid you in this journey because it is very difficult, but that will come from within.
We can be in spiritual groups and we can be in spiritual schools, and we can read spiritual books. And these can be of help to us if we are awakening our own inner discernment. But we must be careful not to get caught up in the politics of many religions. And to not get caught up in problems that will distract us from the real growth of the soul, and from cultivating within us that type of being and spiritual potential that we are really capable of.
Does anyone have questions?
Questions and Answers
Question: How do when we know when you have created solar bodies?
Instructor: Some people have created solar bodies in previous lifetimes, although this is pretty rare, speaking for humanity. And so, if that is the case you would know because you will be awakened in the astral plane, in the mental plane, in the causal plane, depending on which solar bodies were used, and not just a moment of awakening which every person can experience, but continuous awakening and being able to consciously project oneself out of the body and travel at will.
Now, if one has created these bodies in past lives and but then fell, for example, lost their sexual energy or behaved very unethically and lost that level of development, the spirit still maintains that degree of initiation. The initiations never belong to the human person, but always belong to the inner spirit. And so, that spirit can never fall, but the soul can fall. So, the soul will have to recapitulate and re-go through all of these steps of initiation in order to re-gain access to those solar vehicles.
Question: When the Kundalini rises according to degrees…
Instructor: According to the vertebrae…
Question: If it doesn’t do that, it just rises?
Instructor: We can have sparks. We can have very vivid experiences in which all at once you now feel this fire, this illumination. But if that experience passes, and we’re back with the same problems that we always have in life, if we haven’t fundamentally shifted as a person in our quality of being, the essence of who we are hasn’t really grown and developed.
That was just an experience meant to help us and to teach us that we actually have to do the hard work. Just as physical body is important in a day and develops over many months, so with our soul do we have to go through the pains of labor, so to speak, and develop those growing pains of the soul, in which we struggle against ourselves in order to become upright individuals.
Question: So that’s almost better though?
Instructor: Well, nature doesn’t take leaps. So, naturally speaking, there are certain people who say you can pay us twenty thousand dollars and we’ll awaken your Kundalini and they will produce some sort of energetic experience for you, but that’s very different from what we’re talking about initiations into the Christic Path, actually incarnating our own Being happens degree by degree.
Question: Kind of going back to the topic of Kundalini. So, you’re saying that in the Minor Mysteries, the Probationary Path, that’s when you’re moving up the Tree of Life, correct?
Instructor: You are actually cleaning out the parts of you that are submerged in the inferior Tree of Life. So the Tree of Life has a shadow in the hell realms. And we actually have each time to clean out the parts of us that are trapped there.
Question: So at that point you’re starting off from Malkuth (the Kingdom)?
Instructor: Sure, actually, I guess it would be the inverted Yesod. Not much is written about the Minor Mysteries. Experientially, you are experiencing parts of yourself that are very rigid, psychologically speaking, that are very hard to work against. Perhaps you have an answer to this if you start in the inverted Kether or if you start in the inverted Yesod.
Another Instructor: So Dante talks about the nine inverted hell realms, spheres of Klipoth, which is the Hebrew term meaing, “shells” or the world of ego, which exists as they mentioned within the interior of the Earth. If you physically go into the terrestrial crust, you will find caves or caverns, but not people, because the infraconscious dimensions are in the astral plane, but inverted. And as part of the Minor Mysteries, we need to transform ourselves. So, we start to perceive internally experiences about our own inner hell. Because the White Lodge, the Christic Lodge is showing us what you need to work on in order to change.
So, yes, to go up you first will go down. Every ascension is preceded by a descent. This is why in every cosmogony or epic the hero has to enter the hell realms first, which is why Aeneas, from The Aeneid by Virgil, has to descend in order to find the truth that is hidden in those realms. Because our soul is trapped. Part of our consciousness is conditioned in ego, which belongs to those dense regions of nature.
Then, if you want to go up, to ascend the Tree of Life, you progressively must go down, to see and investigate parts of yourself: your anger, pride, lust, fear, laziness, ego. So that by working on those false and understanding them, we can extract light. So, first as Dante depicted in The Divine Comedy, you want to go to Paradiso, Paradise. He states that if you first descend Inferno, relating to initiation, because every type of exaltation in divinity, every type of progress is stipulated upon what we have worked on eliminate the Guardian. Maybe in that way, you get started into higher stages of the path, such as Purgatory, and then, at the end to experience all the bliss.
Unfortunately humanity, whenever people enter religion, or spiritual studies of this type, we all want to go the Paradise first. But the truth is, if you enter the Major Mysteries, you will have astral experiences where the masters of the White Lodge will come to you and will show you: “you need to descend first.”
Personally, when I first started this teaching, I had an experience in which I was being attacked by a demon in the astral plane. And so, I was of course, in the beginning, terrified. Then, a master came up to me from the White Lodge and said, “Descend into the Earth!” He started to conjure this demon and kept him away from me. So, I obeyed these orders and went down through many layers within this internal dimension.
And then finally I came to a cavern where found sepulchers, tomb with the bones, debris. I intuitively got that I had to go out of that cave and in that experience I eventually found myself in Egypt in the astral plane, where I saw the temple of Giza, which physically is an ancient piece of architecture, which is a cadaver.
But in the internal planes the temple of Giza is active. And that temple was, I remember looking at the three pyramids and seeing the light of Christ there. And the Egyptian masters opened the doorway and let me in. And I remember having many other teachings they gave me related to this process. But the simple reality is that they were showing me: “You want to enter this temple, like the great masters before in antiquity, but first go into your Earth, descend down into your own mind. Confront yourself!” And the term descent simply means to face the results of our previous actions, our mistakes.
So, you can have experiences like that, that show you what the Minor Mysteries are. And there are many other ways to verify where you are at through symbols, which is why we study the Kabbalah, which is Jewish mysticism, the language of the internal planes.
Every religion has its symbolism. The cross of Christianity or Jainism, many traditions have the same symbols, which is why we balance the study the different religious traditions and accompany them with our meditation, so that we can verify and understand: “This is where I am at.” First, you have to face that which conditions us first, and when you free consciousness then, they say, “Enter our temple, and let us help you.”
In the beginning we get a lot of help, because, as we are now, we need light. And sometimes those masters will come to you and awaken your consciousness with the [snaps fingers] spark, when you are working with energy exercises, such as pranayama, mantras, runes, sacred rites of rejuvenation, which we have available in books, but also on the websites.
When you start to spark that energy in yourselves, the sexual energy, conserving it, transforming it, you start to have the fire that is going to empower your soul. And that is the beginning, to initiate. So, you can awaken sparks of Kundalini; it does not rise immediately, but you are, so to speak, fanning the flames. The coal is heated, so you have a spark, so you could have ecstasies, experiences, but to do that you need to descend, not only to the Earth, but literally into your physical life. Because Malkuth in Kabbalah, the bottom sphere of the Tree of Life, is our body.
In the internal planes or in the cavern so to speak, you have to discriminate what is happening physically, in our jobs, in our homes, in our bedroom, looking at our behaviors. Because if we act egotistically, we are wasting energy. And then, if you have no energy, you cannot see. I mean if physically you waste energy or expend energies, you feel tired. The consciousness also goes to sleep if we have no force, which is why in the beginning of religion: ethics. If you want to enter the Minor Mysteries, train your mind. Save your energy. And when you build that up, and you are changing your physical life, your behaviors, and no longer performing actions that harm yourself or others, then you have a reservoir [of energy] which you can start to see.
Instructor: So, as you can tell, that is why we will be continuing with this course because there is much to say on each of these different parts. And even more beyond this. This is just the beginning. There are initiations of fire and initiations of light. Many things are already written on the books, so this will be an ongoing course in which we have a lot more to say.
This is a transcription of an audio lecture from Introduction to Gnostic Studies, originally given live at the Gnostic Academy of Chicago.
We start with the quote from the Oracle of Delphi:
“Man, know thyself and you shalt know the universe and its Gods!”
For most of us, we do not have a deep understanding of ourselves. We have a superficial understanding of ourselves―our name, our race, our job―maybe what we like and dislike. When it comes to a deeper understanding, we ask: what does it mean to be a human being? Does it mean we have a soul?
We might have ideas about it, and we might have beliefs, but how does one come to know themselves? How does one know themselves so profoundly that they then experience, directly, the universe, the gods, our own inner divinity, our connection with all the rest of life?
It’s important to ask ourselves where we seek knowledge. For seeking knowledge externally, in classes, in documentaries, scientific studies, or books, that knowledge might help us to survive in the world, and man’s struggle has often been a struggle for survival.
But once we have those basic needs met, and we find ourselves feeling purposeless or aimless, we have to ask ourselves a deeper question, which is: why do we exist?―not just the search for survival, but the search for meaning.
To really understand that, we have to start by knowing ourselves.
So, we have to ask ourselves what we want from life. And if we want from life just a bunch of money in a bank, a nice car, a good job, well, then we’d probably never be here in a group like this. We want something more. We want to really understand directly the truth, something that is beyond pleasure, entertainment, or comfort.
We want to know: what is the meaning of all of this? Why is everything like this? Why do I exist? What am I supposed to be doing with my life? What is the purpose of it all?
Then we have to evaluate how we have been using our time and our energy. If all of our time and our energy is caught up in the struggle for material success, beyond just covering our material needs, but to really investing our whole life into entertainment, pursuits of pleasure, money, and comfort, and investing no time in our spiritual search, our own spiritual development, then we will never come to cultivate the self-knowledge that we are looking for―the knowledge that can go so deep that it can show us the root of our own existence.
We talked a lot about consciousness, and that is what we are seeking to understand: where does our consciousness come from?
Some very materialistic scientists will tell us that consciousness is just an epiphenomenon of the brain. We are all just walking chemical reactions. But in these teachings, we believe that consciousness is actually the root of our experience of all life. It’s only through consciousness that we can experience thoughts, or emotions, or physical sensations. So, that is what we are going to work with.
The Purpose of Studying Gnosis
So, we need to know why we are here. Of course, in a deeper sense of why we exist. But also why we are here studying spiritual teachings. And so the founder of the modern Gnostic movement, Samael Aun Weor has a quote about this. It is very meaningful to me, and it says very directly:
Obviously, we need to know our purpose in gathering ourselves here, in these studies, and for what. If curiosity is the simple motive that moves you, listen: there are many things to be curious about, i.e. in city entertainment centers, in cinemas, the bulls in the arena, etc. Yet, to enter in these studies is something very serious [...] Indeed, to emancipate the Essence (which we’ve talked about before is our own consciousness), to disassemble the mind and will (from our conditioning), is not an easy task. ―Samael Aun Weor, Cosmic Ships
The Gnostic work, to really get that deep into the Gnostic work, to really experience our true nature, is difficult. When we’ve talked in the past few months about different barriers that we have, we’ve talked before about how we need to struggle to awaken our own consciousness. Most of time our consciousness is asleep, and we are going around in our mechanical habits: same thoughts that we thought many times before; feeling the same emotions that we cannot seem stop feeling, even if they are negative, even if it is sadness or anger. We cannot seem to get out of it―our same habits, our same routines. If we really want to wake up, and experience life in a new way, experience life in a more profound way, we have to overcome certain barriers.
Balancing the Three Brains
So, one of the first things we talked about was the three brains: that we have an intellectual center, an emotional center, and a motor-instinctive-sexual center―that we need to work with our physical energies, our emotional energies, and our intellectual energies in a balanced way. By balancing, and achieving that equilibrium in ourselves, in this moment, but also in our daily lives, then we can begin to awaken consciousness.
When we awaken consciousness and work with self-observation, and we are truly observing not only our external life but also our internal states, our states of mind, our emotional states, then we begin to see what is false in us.
We distinguish between consciousness as pure perception in each moment, and then the egotistical filter that prevents us from seeing situations as they are―seeing situations with equanimity and serenity. Instead, we become very upset, angry, or unhappy, or displeased with many situations in life because our own egotism.
Once we finally established a basis of equilibrium to an extent (we have to begin where we are) and we’ve begun to absorb what is false in us―how do we move beyond that and begin to have those higher experiences of the truth? Today, we are going to talk about this: the experiences of our consciousness free from any delusional, egotistical ideas we may have about ourselves.
But to truly understand our own nature, we are going to talk about how we can form our foundation to those types of higher experiences today.
So, do we spend most time observing reality? I gave some examples last time about how, maybe you meet somebody, and the first time you meet them, you think they are a really nice person. Then later on, you find out that was not the case. Or vice versa: you think somebody is a jerk and then later on, you may find out they are a great person and one of your best friends.
But if we extend this little problem, we see that filtered perception extends to our whole life. How much of the time do we spend actually directly perceiving the situation as it is?
So, I already have been talking for a few minutes and probably most people's minds have drifted, begun thinking about other things. We can do that at many points in our life: when we are sitting there in a meeting, or at work, or we are sitting with our family, having a conversation, doing some task. How rarely are we actually focused on that task? Are we actually present and engaged with it, attentive to that conversation without some kind of mental filter, without many other distractions of what we should be doing or what we wish was happening instead, or what we have to do later, but to just be present and enjoy our lives?
If we spend most of our time in that state that I had mentioned, of mind wandering, then how much are we really living? How are we going to understand the true nature of the reality and ourselves if we are never there, consciously speaking? We are asleep. If we are hypnotized by our own ideas about life, our own perceptions that are not true, then how do we begin to see reality?
So, take an average day, today. How long do you think you spent worrying about things, or fantasizing about things, daydreaming? I see this in myself a lot when I am driving. I am not really focused on driving. I’m thinking about all the other stuff that I have going on.
It is not to condemn mind-wandering, but to say that if we are really seeking to wake up, consciously, to begin to perceive life in a profound way, in a new way, in an alert way, then we can’t be always seeing life according to our habits.
Many of us have somebody in our life―I think this happens a lot with family members―where we already know how they are going to act, and what buttons they are going to push. You might go to see somebody. For example: you might go to see your brother and you already have this idea: "Oh, my brother always gets on my nerves in these particular ways.” So, even when you are walking in the room, in the first few minutes of talking to him, you already have in your mind “This is going to be an unpleasant encounter.” It is going to go the same way it always goes.
Comment: You’ve already analyzed it and tried to come to a solution.
Instructor: Right. So you are not giving each situation a new chance, and what happens, interestingly enough, we see this in psychology as well, is that when we have our own preconceptions about somebody, we end up treating them in a way that causes them to continue responding to us in the same way.
These types of cycles can happen in our relationships. They can happen in our jobs. “Oh! I am already dreading going to work today and it is going to be a terrible day!” And then you show up having that kind of attitude and it ends up being a terrible day.
So there can be some feedback loop there. It is very important to check ourselves up a little bit, psychologically―to perceive each day, and each moment, and each person in a new way―to really see the reality of that. To do that we need to be awakening our consciousness.
The Key of Sol and Self-Observation
And so, one way we can awaken consciousness is self-observation. We talked about that before, that there is a specific technique that we use in Gnosticism called the Key of SOL. As taught by Samael Aun Weor:
Gnostic students must learn to divide attention into three parts: subject (which is us), object (which is whatever we are focusing on, in this moment, in the external world), and location (which is where we are right now). ―Samael Aun Weor, Esoteric Treatise of Hermetic Astrology
So we can go ahead and do this right now:
Subject: to not fall into the forgetting of oneself before any representation. ―Samael Aun Weor, Esoteric Treatise of Hermetic Astrology
Whoever has watched a movie or a TV show, and you get so sucked into it that somebody can be talking to you in another room and walking behind you, and you do not even hear them, because you have completely lost focus.
So, we forget about our physical bodies. We forget about our emotional states, and our intellectual states. We just go along with things and the next thing you know, you’ve gotten so caught up in your anger, that you are shouting at somebody before you have even been able to catch yourself and realize: "I am getting angry!"
It can happen. We are not aware of ourselves. So, right now, if we become aware of ourselves, we can use the tree brains as a point of reference that we talked about before.
So, physically, “How am I feeling?” In my physical body. This is not an intellectual process, but just to consciously observe it, to feel your body.
Emotionally: "How am I feeling?" So, even if you do not have a label for your emotional state, become aware of it.
"What am I thinking?" Become aware of your thoughts, and that creates a space of separation from ourselves, from which we can observe ourselves in a more balanced way. So, after we become aware of ourselves, we need to also be aware of the object of our attention. So, Samael Aun Weor says:
Object: To observe every representation, every fact, every event, no matter how insignificant the latter may seem, in detail, without forgetting oneself. ―Samael Aun Weor, Esoteric Treatise of Hermetic Astrology
So maintaining awareness of ourselves is to be aware of the person we are talking to, or the thing we are listening to, or the task we are engaged in, no matter how meaningless it seems. Maybe we have a job in a factory where all you do is to push a button all day. So, no matter how meaningless it seems to be awake to that moment, to be alert to it, to be perceiving this as new, and not allowing your mind to drift off into autopilot―but to wake yourself up. The more we work with them, the muscle of self-awareness, the muscle of consciousness, the more we begin to perceive even more of reality.
And then also being aware of our location:
Location: The rigorous observation of the place where we may be, and to ask ourselves: "What place is this? Why am I here?" ―Samael Aun Weor, Esoteric Treatise of Hermetic Astrology
So, for most of us we walked into this room. We have not looked at it. We found a chair. Since then we have forgotten about the room we are in. So, what we want is not the tunnel vision of consciousness where we are only perceive a speck of our experience. We want to expand that consciousness out. The way to do that is to work with consciousness―to wake yourself up.
Throughout the day I try to catch myself. If I am at the computer, working away, and then suddenly I am: "Oh, I am not self-observing!”―to catch myself, to work with a practice like the key of SOL, to make myself aware of myself, aware of what I am doing, where I am―and gradually your consciousness begins to expand so that you can be aware.
I have a walk to work where I walk across a really beautiful green space. Usually I am there in my tunnel vision and I am really focused: “Ok, I have got to get to work. These are the things I am going to do,” but I will wake myself up like this and I use to practice like this. Suddenly my experience of life becomes much fresher, much more profound. I notice the people walking by. I can hear the birds. I can smell the freshly cut grass, or whatever might be.
So, if we really want to have a really dynamic and living experience of life and not sleeping like robots, then we can work with this type of practice. It’s a spiritual practice, a spiritual exercise working with our own consciousness, our own perception.
That is distinct from an intellectual understanding. It is not: "Oh, I hear the birds. I smell the grass." It is not in the mind. It is just being aware of it. Just being alive to it.
Samael Aun Weor also wrote about that:
“Whosoever wants to awaken consciousness must work here and now. We have the consciousness incarnated and that is why we must work with it here and now (in our body, in our daily lives, not to be off fantasizing about other things, but to be working right here, in this moment, in every moment of our lives, with our own consciousness). Whosoever awakens consciousness here in this physical world awakens in all the suprasensible worlds.
“The one who awakens consciousness in this three-dimensional world awakens in the fourth, fifth, sixth, and seventh dimensions.
“The one who wants to live consciously in the superior worlds must awaken here and now.” ―Samael Aun Weor, Esoteric Treatise of Hermetic Astrology
The Tree of Life: A Map of the Superior Worlds
We are going to talk a little bit about what the superior worlds are, but I want to point out: what is the foundation for having higher experiences, for experiencing the truth, our true nature, the root of our existence, our inner divinity?
The basis for this is: pointing out, to begin working with our consciousness here and now. If we want to sit in meditation and to really awaken in higher states of being, we have to begin by awakening in our daily life, all the time, moment to moment.
We can use this diagram of the Tree of Life―which is also in your handouts, if it is easy to see at there―to perceive what we are. We talked about the bottom part of this before, the bottom sphere of this diagram, Malkuth, our physical body. So, if we are aware, conscious of our physical body, we can know that part of our consciousness is here, acting in the physical body.
We have also to talk about having an energetic body, the vital body. And that is the energy that moves and circulates blood and air and keeps us alive allows us to move around. Without the energetic body, we would not be able to exist, physically. So, we have an aspect of our consciousness that we may not be conscious of from moment to moment, but we do have an aspect of our consciousness that is animating our body, keeping us alive.
We also have what is called an astral body, related here with the sphere of Hod. The astral body is all the emotional energies that move through us and keep us functioning in the emotional plane.
And then, we have a mental body here in Netzach that transforms all of our thoughts.
Finally, the human soul, or for us, the essence of the human soul, which is related with the sphere of Tiphereth.
There are higher spheres on the Tree of Life as well related with our divine soul and Geburah, and our Innermost Spirit as Chesed.
And so, those are the things that we want to start experiencing.
We may have a sense of our physical body, a sense of the energy moving in our body. We may be familiar with our emotional states and our mental states. We may even feel a little bit conscious of our own willpower. How do we become conscious of our divine soul? Of our Inner Spirit? Or even higher in this Tree of Life?
We have these three top sephiroth that are related with the tree primary forces that in Christianity we call them the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. In order to be aware of those, we have to awaken here and now.
Also, I want to point out that there are lower dimensions. So, if this is the Tree of Life, so we can consider these spheres at the bottom are an inverted Tree of Life, the shadow of the Tree of Life. Last time we talked about the ego, that we have many delusional states that we get caught in. Perhaps walking to a room and we are very afraid of everybody is going to hate us in that room. Even if that has nothing to do with reality, even if you are walking in the room, people do not even notice you are there, you can have your own psychological state about it―that would be experiencing a lower state of consciousness, a state of consciousness that is not free, that is not experiencing reality, but is conditioned by our own psychological habits.
In order to ascend to higher states, we need to become aware of these lower states.
In talking little bit about the Tree of Life, there is a quote from the gnosticteachings.org website:
“The primary symbol of the Tree of Life is a structure of ten spheres called sephiroth in Hebrew. These spheres have many levels of meaning. Macrocosmically, they represent dimensions or worlds. Psychologically, they represent aspects of our consciousness [...] The ten spheres are but a simplification of a much more sophisticated and complex rendering of the many dimensions found in existence and non-existence.” ―A Gnostic Instructor, Glorian Publishing
Just this can represent psychological states or aspects of our consciousness, they can also represent higher, superior levels of nature, in which nature becomes more rarified, more divine, more pure and sacred. If we want to experience higher dimensions, what might be called heavens in some religions or Nirvana―in order to do that, we have to awaken―we have to liberate ourselves from lower states of being.
You can think of the consciousness as a seed that has been planted in physical matter. We actually have a teaching about the ray of the creation in Gnosticism. But up here, we have the Ain which is the Nothingness. And from the Ain emerges the Ain Soph, which is the Limitless.
Another Instructor: Ain is the Nothingness, while the Ain Soph means “No limit” because Ain means “No” or negation and Soph means “end.”
Instructor: From Ain Soph emerges the Ain Soph Aur, which is the “limitless light,” the light of the Christ. As that is the light that descends through these different dimensions, these different levels of nature, it is gradually is going to be planted here in our physical body.
Whatever we choose to do here and now with our consciousness, with that little seed, will determine if we are going to grow as a Tree of Life or going to descend into lower states or being.
It is very important to learn about our consciousness, to work with it, to understand it, to meditate, to self-observe. And as we work with that energy, to be able to begin understanding higher dimensions as well.
If we have already got all the elements that we need, how can we experience those higher states of consciousness? Just, in that analogy of planting a seed, a seed needs certain conditions in order to be able to grow, right? A seed needs water, light, air. So, we already have the seed planted in the earth. But do we have the light? Do we have the teachings and the doctrine that help us, the scriptures, the Word of God, whether it is the Bible, the Bhagavad Gita, the Buddhist scriptures as well?
Do we have that type of nourishment coming into our life? Or are we feeding our hearts and minds with lots of garbage, other junk food that is not nourishing the soul?
And do we have the water, the water of the life, the energies that we need? Because in order to self-observe, all day and all night, to be awake in the dream state, as well, you need a lot energy.
Awakening and the Conservation of Energy
We have to talk about the conservation of energy. And it begins by just observing yourself and see how you are using your energy.
If observe yourself through the day:
How do you use your physical energy?
How do you use your vital energy, emotional, or mental energy?
Volitional energy is the energy of the willpower.
The energy of your consciousness, your spiritual energy. How do you use all of that in a given day?
Do you use it wisely?
Do you over-exert the mind, the heart, or the physical body out of balance with the other centers?
Much of this is building off what we have already talked about.
But in order to conserve it, we have to first see how we are using it and where we are wasting it. So, if I am spending ten hours a week, out in bars, drinking a bunch, and laughing with my friends and doing that stuff all the time―is that ten hours of energy that I am conserving for my spiritual practice or is that ten hours of energy that I just kind of binged on and it is gone? It is never coming back.
Comment: It got spent elsewhere.
Instructor: Right! If we want to use this life wisely, we really want to ask ourselves: “What do we want from life?” And if what we want from life is something more than just entertainment, something more than pleasure and money in our bank accounts, but we really want to know divinity, we have to start being serious about looking how we use our life.
If we are using our life in ways that do not achieve that type of outcome, then we can’t be surprised. Everything in nature works on the basis of cause and effect. If every cause that we are putting into motion is creating effects that are wasting our energy, well, then we are going to get to the end of our life and we should not be surprised that point that we have not cultivated our soul, because we have not put the causes into effect that would have created the awakening of consciousness.
We have a really valuable opportunity that we have teachings like this. Now we have access to all the world scriptures, access to a variety of teachings, especially here in the United States. Many of us have more time to study religion than has ever existed in the past, but how are we using that time and how are using this precious lifetime? We have a chance now to really know ourselves, and to know divinity directly. If we do not take that seriously, no one will be to blame but us.
An important piece of conserving energy is ethics. A lot of time people talk about morality, and morality can change depending where you are, what country you are live in, the time period.
For example: I was living in South Korea and many of the morals of Korea are different from the morals that we have here in America. Who is to say which moral is better or worse?
But when it comes to ethics, this is really something personal. Yes, in the Ten Commandments or in the ethical foundations of Buddhism, or in yoga: Yama and Niyama, that we are going to talk about―in all of those teachings we are getting a sense of ethics, but truly we have to go deeper than just doing something because “Somebody told me to do it. Because my priest says so, or my teachers, or whoever told me to do it.”
We have to find the ethics in our own heart, in our own conscience. So, we know when we are doing something that is wasting our time. We know when we are doing something that is harming others or harming ourselves. And if we choose to ignore that and waste our energy, like I said, we are the ones who will have to deal with the consequences.
Ethics is not about following some strict dogma that has been imposed upon us, but ethics is about really working with the energies of nature, and the energies of our own consciousness, and the energies of our soul. It is the reason that we have a conscience that knows wrong from right. It is because we are longing to awaken to something more. But if we do not set the right foundation, if we do not have the causes that help us to awaken in higher dimensions, then we will not be able to do it.
So, another quote from the Gnostic Teachings website is:
“Ethics are not just mechanical laws that some external authority is trying to impose upon us. These rules, commandments, or vows have a very specific function, which must be clearly grasped, and that is this: If you perform actions that are harmful, you create disharmony not only in your environment but in your mind. Yet if you follow these (ethical) "observances," or positive practices, you create positive energy, not only into your environment, but in your mind. So the purpose of Yama and Niyama or the Commandments of Moses is to stabilize our psychology so that we are no longer vibrating with so much negative emotion.” ―Gnostic Instructor: Meditation without Exertion: Ethics
In every religion, if someone is going to become a practitioner, like a monk or a nun, they have to take certain vows, ethical vows, renouncing harmful behaviors, and this is not just because somebody wrote a rule book and said that you have to do it.
This is because when we work with spiritual energies, we need to be aware that disharmony will create an inability to see the truth.
If you go and are lying to people all the time, eventually, you yourself become unable to perceive the truth yourself. Many people justify…
Comment: Because you told so many lies that you don’t know it anymore!
Instructor: In your own mind you become confused. People justify that. I have heard many people say: "Well, everybody lies. It is no big deal!" But if you really make an effort to be honest, you begin to see things in a very different way.
When we lie, we actually come to hate ourselves. We come to feel that we have no integrity as a person. We become confused in our own mind about who we are, because we said so many different things to so many different people that we do not even know anymore, “Who am I?” And lying is just one little example of ethics, right? There are much more profound types of unethical behaviors that we can give in to.
It is serious in this work. If we want to experience directly divinity, and higher states of consciousness, then we cannot just skip this step. People want to jump right into the highest levels of Tantric Buddhism, and all of those high aspects without establishing their own ethics.
So, people get very confused. They start working with energetic practices and they create more harm for themselves and for others.
What we need to do is to cultivate stability of mind, in which then divinity can express to us very directly, because the mind becomes like a serene lake. But each time that we are doing things that in our conscience we do not feel right about, we come to disintegrate ourselves so that we do not have even a good sense of our character.
Well then, how can we go and sit in mediation and prayer and bare our souls to God and expect that God’s going to show up? We do not have that sincerity with ourselves in those cases.
Ethics in Patanjali’s Yoga Sutras
To highlight just one example of ethics from Patanjali's Yoga Sutras: the first two steps of Yoga in the Yoga Sutras are Yama and Niyama, which are “to-do” and “not to-do.”
So, certain behaviors that we should be doing that are harmonious with other people, harmonious with ourselves, harmonious with divinity and our environment and that generate a good energy, a positive energy that can help us to awaken.
Then there are actions to avoid, because when you do those types of actions, it is like throwing big rocks in a lake, and so of course, you have to wait for those effects to dissipate.
Under Yama we see:
I am going to point out that these are not just physical actions. It is really good to avoid physically being violent, to physically say the truth, not to steal, to be chaste: to conserve our sexual and vital energy as well, and not to be greedy, or jealous. But in our mind, we can also do that, in our heart.
So, I may be angry at my friend and I say: "Ok, well, I am catching myself. I can see this anger. I should not be violent. So, I am not going to punch my friend.” But in my mind, I am sitting there, criticizing my friend, and in my heart, am I hating my friend, this person who I should love, who I should feel compassion for?
It is not just to get caught in the physical actions. That is where we need to begin, checking out, “What I am doing with my physical actions, with my daily life?” But then, as we are working with self-observation and we are going into those deeper states and truly seeing ourselves, we will discover many states in ourselves that are unpleasant, that we do not like to see, that we do have hatred in our hearts even for our family members, or the people that we are supposed to love. There are moments when we truly hate them, when maybe we think we want to kill them. It is terrible, but we have those thoughts. We have those feelings, and we need to observe them. We need to become aware of them, meditate on them so that we can change, so, we can pray and get the help of divinity to become better people.
Because every time we are acting on it, we are fueling our envy: "Oh, I just hate that guy. I really hope he loses his job!” Every time we are feeding our energy into those types of thinking, in that type of emotion, we are creating more disharmony in ourselves, and more unhappiness. We cannot be calm, and we cannot be able to experience higher states, higher emotional states of compassion and truth, love, and serenity. We cannot feel that as long as we pour our energy into those negative states.
Here in the other column we have Niyama:
Saucha: freedom from egotistical desire, desire of I want and I do not care who has to suffer for me to get what I want.
Comment: Or wanting to be on top!
Instructor: Yes, entitlement as well. So we need to let that go, to not be so consumed with "I wish that reality was a different way! I wish that my life was a different way! I wish these people treated me differently than how they are treating me!" Because that is making us very unhappy. We need to learn to accept reality, and to let go of our own egotistical wishes to change everything because that is a cause of our misery.
We talked about Noble Truths of Buddhism and that suffering is caused by desire. So, if we want to stop suffering, we have to let that go. We need to have contentment with what one has.
Also, work with austerities or spiritual practices, so we can begin with prayer and meditation. Or as I mentioned, self-observation. We have many other spiritual practices, in this tradition that we can work with as well.
Study of scriptures and continual remembrance of God. There is that light that we need. To nourish our soul, to awaken.
By continually remembering God, we can avoid actions that we do not feel are truly ethical. Because if we really remember in each moment, divinity is here in my heart, in this temple, then, how can you continue to be cruel to your neighbor, and to hate the people around you? To be filled with all kinds of defects. You want to change. You feel remorse.
You can test this. I have had many times in my life where, rather than trying to change an unpleasant situation, I just start tried to change myself. So, I will be honest with you, guys: I have had a bad attitude about many jobs that I had in the past. Realizing like, as I said, that there is a cycle there. I am going to work with this attitude: "Oh, these coworkers are going to annoy me, and my boss is going to be a jerk! I am going to have these problems with customers!” And so, rather than trying to always run from one job to the next job, to the next job, and finding ourselves again in an unhappy situation, in our new job…
Comment: It follows you everywhere you go!
Instructor: Your problems follow you exactly.
Because the problem, most of time, is with you, not with your external circumstances!―even if the external circumstances are very bad. I mean, some people have very difficult lives, very challenging external circumstances. Sometimes the only thing that we have control over and power to change is ourselves.
I work with this, and I try really hard: "Oh, I am catching myself. I am not going to lie, even though right now my boss may be mad at me if I tell the truth. I am going to catch myself,” and forcing myself to do it. It is difficult. It is a challenging work. But if you put it into motion and test it out, you will see the results and you are going to see in your meditation and your practices as well, then you will have that faith from your own experience that putting ethics in motion really work, and really helps you to awaken and decreases your suffering. It puts you in harmony with the people around you and harmony with yourself. Then, you do not need anybody warding over you or telling you what to do.
You want to do what is right because you know that it brings is your happiness. You see the link there between cause and effect. But, because most of time we are totally, psychologically asleep, and we are not aware about what we are doing, or what effects are coming from what we are doing, then we go around with an attitude of entitlement. "Oh, why are not things the way I want them to be?" And we do not accept responsibility. And we do not see that we are putting the very causes into motion.
Comment: Yes, doing things my way instead of your way.
Instructor: Yes. We do not see that our own thinking is flawed. That we think that reality should succumb to our will, our wishes. And our ideas about reality, rather than being conscious of: "OK, reality functions on a basis of cause and effect, and it is found by working putting the right causes in motion, then there is no way I am going to have positive effects.”
You go around and you hate people, and you are mean to people, and you lie, steal, murder, cheat, and all of those things, you are going to have an unhappy life.
But, sometimes we do one good thing, and then we feel: “Well, how come I did one good thing, and I am not getting all these results?” We ignore that the other ninety-nine percent of the time we are doing a lot of harmful things.
We need to be really sincere with ourselves―a radical kind of sincerity with ourselves. Moment to moment, what kind of causes am I putting into effect? Slowly, tip the scale back, so, that you are putting more positive actions into place: turning the other cheek. I mean, do not endure abuse. Have common sense, but if somebody insults you, not getting into a huge fight with them, forgiving them, having compassion. Maybe they are having a really bad day. Whatever the situation may be, putting positive causes into motion every moment, and we then gradually start to see the effects.
And so, another quote from Galatians, in the Bible:
“Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap.” ―Galatians 6:7
Instructor: Yes. It is karma. Cause and effect. Karma means action and consequence, cause and effect.
So, sometimes we think we can trick God into having mercy on us: “I’ll just wait and I am on my deathbed and then I’ll beg for forgiveness and I will just be fine!”
Comment: The problem is, you never know when you are going to die! You can get killed in a second in a car accident…
Instructor: Exactly! And we do not know how much time we have. That each moment in life is valuable. And God is always watching you, even if you forget God, he does not forget you.
Divinity is very alive, very intelligent. That the law of action and consequence is an intelligent law. It is not mechanical. Laws of nature might be mechanical, but the superior laws, the laws of divinity, are laws that have a balance of severity and mercy.
If you are acting in ways that you know in your consciousness that are wrong, that law is going to be severe on you for your own good, so that you see that you need to listen to your heart, your inner divinity, to do what is right. But if you express sincere remorse, if you want to change, if you want to become a better person for your own benefit and also for the benefit of everyone around you, then the law of mercy can help you, can elevate you into those higher states that we saw in the Tree of Life.
We do not want to be like the Pharisee, going around and telling everybody: "Look how great I am! I am such a poor person! I am so noble. I do all of these great things"―and then in our own mind be full of impurity, be full hatred, be full of envy, and greed and lust.
We want to really be sincere with ourselves and humble to see ourselves as we are.
There is another quote from the Bible, one of my favorites, from the first book of Samuel that says:
For the Lord sees not as man sees: man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks on the heart. ―1 Samuel 16:7
When we look in ourselves, we take such good care of our appearance how I am going to look? How are people going to perceive us? What kind of job do I have? What kind of car do I drive? These types of outward things. When we are really working spiritually, we want to develop our own spiritual growth, our own soul, we need to look on our heart, the way that God does, to weigh our heart in a scale and to see, “I really used today wisely,” that “I really used today in a way that I feel good about," that “I feel that I was trying to become a better person.”
In the beginning, it is not to strive for perfection, that is unrealistic, but to just to be sincere, “Did I take the next step that I was able to take?” Sometimes we see things that we didn’t, that we missed opportunities. That is OK, as long as we are learning from them and we are trying to change, asking for help from our inner divinity to be able to change.
That is gradually working with self-observation, working with meditation, seeing these things in ourselves, and being sincere, that we can begin to ascend into higher states of consciousness and come out of those states of suffering, and even have experiences directly with divinity.
The Four Principles of Karma
When we work with action and consequence, with this law of karma, there are four rules that we should remember and keep in mind [as taught by Tsong Khapa in Great Treatise on the Stages of the Path to Enlightenment].
The first is that:
1. Action produces related consequences.
So, it means that whatever you are doing is going to have a consequence. There is no action that is not going to produce a consequence. To not think as some people do, to not fool ourselves as: "Oh, I can cheat and get my way through this! And nobody will find out. None of this will have a consequence."
Even if you are lucky and you get away with whatever it was that you did, physically, internally you did not get away with that―and internally, in your own conscience, know, you are going to think less of yourself as a person for having done that.
But the thing is not only physical consequences, but they also have emotional consequences, energetic consequences. Consequences in our mind.
I gave the example of lying. Lying does not just have the consequence of hurting the people that you lie to. It also imbalances your mind. It creates disharmony and confusion in your own mind.
If you really work to tell the truth from moment to moment, you begin to see how much clearer your mind becomes.
The second rule is that:
2. The consequences are greater than the actions.
You might say one word, just one word, even if it is a hateful word. It is cruel word. It is a loving word. The effects of that word can be much greater. We see them in people that have written a book. Or somebody tweets a wrong thing. Twitter is pretty popular right now. So, somebody just tweets the wrong thing and the consequences can be enormous, that they can lose their job. They can lose their entire reputation, in an instant, right?
Being aware that the consequences are greater than the actions is important. It is not to delude ourselves: "Oh, this is just a little thing!” But you know that little things are going to produce much greater consequences.
This can work in our favor. When we work with positive actions, when we work with ethical actions, sacrifice for others, compassion, good behaviors, virtuous deeds, then the consequences as well are great. We will be rewarded in our work, in our life. People will like you more if you are kind to them. (I don’t know guys if you have figured that out). Usually, if you are jerk to people, they are not going to be nice to you. They are not going to want to work with you. If you are kind to people, then you can get along better with people.
Comment: Then they can get cooperation from you.
Instructor: Right, and people will want to cooperate with you because you are a nice person. Even on a superficial level, we can see that, that the actions have effects. But when we are talking in a more profound level, on the spiritual effects of our life, then this becomes even more important to us.
How am I using my emotions, my mind?
Am I using them in a way that is in accordance with what God wants from me?―you know, with this loving neighbor, loving God―or am I using them to hurt people? This stuff that we should not be doing.
The third rule is that:
3. You cannot receive the consequence without committing its correspondent action.
If you want to experience higher dimensions, or heavenly dimensions, talking with divinity or angels, you can expect that if you have committed the actions that allow that to happen, since nothing is given for free.
You sacrifice and you help others, you perform virtuous deeds, you do in your daily life what your own conscience your inner divinity is guiding you to do, then you will be able to have those higher mystical experiences. But you cannot just expect to go with the flow and continue on in bad behaviors and then suddenly your life changes in an instant. We may have a fantasy about that, but that cannot happen, unless we begin to work.
4. Once an action is performed, the consequences cannot be erased.
After you said some really cruel thing to someone that you love, you cannot ever take it away. That is an example of this.
However [There is a fifth principle of karma that has not been taught until the writings of Samael Aun Weor]:
5. A superior law always overcomes an inferior one.
So, if are sincerely remorseful, you may be able to go and apologize to that person and they may forgive you.
Comment: And then maybe the law of mercy will want to take over instead.
Instructor: In that merciful exchange, you might be able to repair the damage from the bad behavior, but you can’t erase the consequences of actions that have put in motion. However, we work with superior laws here. We work with the law of sacrifice, of doing kind things for others without expecting anything in return. That is what Jesus has modeled for us. He gave everything with his life―a beautiful, a perfect example of love as sacrifice.
If in our own little way, in our own interactions with others, our daily life, our work, whatever our situation may be, if we are working to turn that into a service, to do good for others―not because we want everybody to like us, and to praise us and think we are great, but just genuinely out of love for others―we can overcome our defects. We can overcome the consequences of the mistakes we have made, because we sometimes, being very much asleep, just say stupid things, which can be discouraging to see in ourselves, but as long as you are conscious, you are trying to use that to do good things.
The effects can be more powerful. We have talked before when we do things consciously, whether positive or negative, the effects of those actions are going to be more powerful. So, we want to make sure that we are awakening consciousness, conserving our energy, putting positive, virtuous, harmonious actions into motion so that we have positive effects.
The Training and Work of Initiation
Finally, we are going to finish with a long quote from Dion Fortune. In many esoteric schools, they talk about initiates and imitates are people who enter into the mysteries of divinity, the secret teachings.
Now, in this tradition, many secret teachings are openly taught, so we do not have to wait other person to come and to initiate us. But we ourselves are the initiators. We ourselves have to take these teachings in our own daily lives, in our own spiritual practice and work with them. So then we are able to enter into higher aspects of consciousness, in our own meditation, in our own experience.
We have to initiate something new, create new circumstances for ourselves by working with our own consciousness. When the consciousness is free, when the mind is free of conditioning, when the will is free of conditioning, then we have freedom in our life to see things in a totally new way, to make choices. As long as we are caught in that, the cycle repetition, sleeping mechanical consciousness, then we do not have any power to change.
As we start to wake up, we have to master equanimity and equilibrium in our circumstances, because life is going to bring hard, challenging circumstances in your way. Many of us are experiencing this right now. We are here in these type of studies is because we are suffering, and because we are trying to find a way that transcends the suffering. In order to do that, first we have to begin by accepting suffering, not in a way that is passive or complicit with evil, but in a way of the integrity of the soul.
In this quote Dion Fortune says:
“The initiate may accept his lot with a calmness which amazes men whose impulse it is to curse or pray according to their nature, but his acceptance does not necessarily imply passivity. To accept one's fate without murmuring does not pledge one to make no effort to better it. Knowing the power of concentrated thought, the initiate makes use of it in all the problems of life (that concentrated thought is our conscious awareness). His method, however, is not that of direct attack in which he "wills" the change of the unpleasant condition, but is directed to bring about certain changes in his own consciousness, for he knows that it is his own temperament which is the real instrument of karma. It is only through those factors in his own nature which react that karma can affect him. He knows that certain conditions come to him in order that they may provoke certain reactions in his own nature, and according to his handling of these reactions will be his karma, even in the present life. When he has harmonised these reactions, he has worked out his karma.” ―Dion Fortune, The Training and Work of an Initiate
If we break that down a little bit, it is everything that we have been talking about. It is about establishing a really deep sincerity, a deep ethic in yourself then no matter what everybody does you, you are going to be a good person. You are going to be a person that can feel dignity with yourself, integrity, because you know you try to do what is right, by your own conscience.
No matter what circumstances throws at you, your reactions to the circumstances is going to determine what happens next. So, if you respond positively, with virtuous actions, sacrificing and helping others, then your life can slowly, gradually ascend into better circumstances. If you respond to life with negativity and make things worse, getting into arguments with people, hurt people, then little by little you are going to increase your problems, and descend to lower states of being.
So, she goes on talking about the initiate:
“He knows, therefore that although he cannot determine the conditions under which his life must be lived, he can determine his reaction to those conditions. It is this fact which he bears constantly in mind in all his dealings. It is this realisation which enables him to raise his head above a sea of troubles and view them from the standpoint of cosmic law and spiritual principles. Although he cannot command the conditions to which he awakens from the sleep of birth, he is nevertheless the master of his fate, for he can manipulate those conditions in such a way that they shall bear him whithersoever he will, just as a ship can tack against a head-wind; and the worse the conditions and the stronger the wind, the swifter his progress.” ―Dion Fortune, The Training and Work of an Initiate
In this teaching we are trying to transform our life by using it in a superior way, by using life as a school for our spiritual development. That is very different from a common mindset: "Oh, well, I can’t control anything in life! Life just happens to me,” and so. “No, if life is terrible, there is nothing that I can do about that. I do not have any power to make it better!"
We accept responsibility for our life, and we work with higher principles, with spiritual principles, not with the laws, the worldly, common sense of average people. When we are working with the spiritual laws and with that by working with our own consciousness, we realize that the worse the conditions of life, the better for us. Because we are able to define ourselves, to develop ourselves, to see new things about ourselves, to become stronger in our own soul.
The soul is like a warrior, and as a soul, without any battles, cannot train, cannot develop itself. Then look at the ultimate example of this: Jesus Christ, right? Or we can look at saints or buddhas. People who endured terrible persecution, and Jesus was crucified.
If that is our ultimate goal, if someday we would like to gradually ascend towards becoming better people, with equanimity, truly spiritual types of people that can endure suffering and still love others, still have great compassion and serenity with our circumstances, then we have to begin by looking at our own life and in our ability to tolerate the little unpleasant things in our life.
If Jesus could handle being crucified, can I take an insult from our neighbor and respond with love? And that is where we have to begin. Little things that right now in our life are training us so that we come to handle bigger things.
So, there is one more quote I am going to end with by Dion Fortune:
“The discipline of the path cannot be learned from books. It is experience alone which brings realization. Let us therefore accept our karma as the first initiation. Let us strive for a mastery of ourselves in our circumstances which shall give us serenity under all conditions. What cannot be cured must be endured. This is the first lesson which karma teaches us. The adept is a man of unruffled serenity. For he is a man of perfect self-control. Let us strive for mastery of the inner astral kingdom of the emotions (having serenity of the emotions); once we have acquired this, we have the key of the astral plane in our hands ready for the time when the initiator shall bring us to the door.” ―Dion Fortune, The Training and Work of the Initiate
So, if we seek those higher experiences, we need to establish the causes here in our own emotional states of being, our mind, our heart, our body. So that we’re ready, that when the moment comes, we’re given key to enter into higher states of being, we have the necessary preparation.
This is a transcription of an audio lecture from The Eternal Tarot of Alchemy and Kabbalah, originally given live at the Gnostic Academy of Chicago.
The Emperor, the fourth arcanum of the tarot, indicates to us our innermost divinity, our inner Being, our innermost God, and as we have been discussing throughout this course, the Kabbalah, we have been speaking about the Tree of Life, which is a representation of our psyche, a map of consciousness.
In this image, we see that the fourth sephirah, or sphere, from the top of the Tree of Life is our Spirit, חסד Chesed, the Innermost. The previous three arcana, laws, cards of the tarot that we discussed, indicated with the exactitude the law of three above. The trinity, Father, Son, Holy Spirit, which in Kabbalah is known as כתר Kether, חכמה Chokmah, בינה Binah. These three forces in nature create, give life, and from this top trinity emerges the Spirit, Chesed, the topic of our discussion today.
Chesed amongst the kabbalists has been associated in different ways, but astrologically speaking, it relates to Jupiter, and also relates to Mars. Our inner Being is the one who must conquer our inner psyche, who must control the elements: earth, air, fire, water, that exist within our interior. The inner Emperor, our inner Spirit, Chesed, “Mercy” in Kabbalah, is our innermost divinity who is Martian in nature. He needs to fight within our soul to liberate our soul, to liberate our consciousness.
He does it primarily through controlling the four elements and as we have been discussing, the number four, as well as the other arcana, are intuitive principles. These are laws in nature which are eternal, represented by Torah, the law, or tarot in Hebrew and in the Egyptian traditions.
We also discussed how in order to receive help from our inner divinity, we must learn to become practical magicians in relation to the first card. We are initiating a new way of life, a practice, a discipline, by introspecting into our psyche and learning to understand the elements they are in. Likewise, with the arcanum two, we are working with the feminine principle, the Divine Mother, the priestess.
For every priest has his priestess, in terms of magical ceremony, in relation with the three forms of magic, which are elemental magic, ceremonial magic, and sexual magic, in relation to the lower three sephiroth, or lower trinity of the Tree of Life
Mind, נצח Netzach; הוד Hod, emotions; יְסוֹד Yesod, vitality, in their respective order. A magician is a being that knows how to work with those three types of sciences in depth. He does so through his priestess, the Divine Mother, the divine feminine. With the unification of those two forces, we have the third force which is the Empress of the tarot. She is the Christified soul, a soul that is fully illuminated, divine, perfected.
That number three relates to creation, and from those three forces of man and woman, husband and wife, we generate our spiritual force. We generate the development of the Emperor within us.
The Emperor is our inner Spirit, our Being, our divine spark that emanates from the top trinity of the Tree of Life. We, in our internal constitution, are represented by the Hebrew letter ד Daleth, on the top right corner of the image of the card.
We spoke previously about how ג Gimel, the third Hebrew letter, represents a rich person, a rich man, a noble etc. ד Daleth is the opposite, signifying a poor person, which is where we get words such as darvish, dervish, symbolic of a poor person, a fakir.
We are ד Daleth. We are the poor person seeking the riches of divinity through meditation and through the three forms of magic we discussed: elemental magic, which is precisely the work with plants, working with the soul and creatures of nature through certain rituals and practices in which we command those souls to work for us. Likewise, ceremonial magic teaches us the Eucharist. To receive the forces of transubstantiation of the Christic force in the world of Hod. The previous form of magic, elemental magic, relates to Netzach, the mind. Hod to ceremonial magic and Yesod, the vital force relates to creative sexual magic between husband and wife.
So, we are the poor person. We are destitute―if we are honest and examine our psyche, what we carry within our mind, our heart, our body.
“What is our level of being?” we ask ourselves frequently. Who are we in a given instant? Do we know divinity directly? If we are sincere, we analyze that we do not have divinity developed inside. We are poor, and this is why Jesus said, “Blessed are the poor in spirit for they shall enter the kingdom of heaven” (Matthew 5:3).
It is necessary to be humble to receive knowledge. “Be humble in order to obtain enlightenment, and upon obtaining enlightenment, be humble still.”
To access the Spirit itself, we work with from certain forms of magic. We work with meditation, as we discussed in the first arcanum of the tarot, the Magician. But here with the Emperor, we are talking about a Spirit that is in full command of His lower elements, the lower parts of Himself.
For the Tree of Life teaches us that we are in Malkuth, this physical body, the bottom of the Tree of Life.
The Spirit is the seventh sephirah from the bottom to the top.
From Him enfolds Geburah, which is consciousness, the divine part of our soul that is feminine, that never mixes with impurity.
We are a part of Tiphereth, a fraction of will that has emanated and descended down these different levels of modalities of energy, consciousness and experience.
We have mind of which we are familiar with, our thoughts, concepts, etc.
We have Hod, our feelings, our sentiments, our emotions.
We Yesod, our vitality, and we have Malkuth, our physical body.
We are in this physical plane in Malkuth which means kingdom. We can also say it means “empire.” The Emperor above, the Spirit, Chesed, must learn to control through His consciousness exerting itself upon will, and that will power must obey divinity. It must learn to control thought, feeling, instinct, sensation, impulse, and our physical body.
He must conquer this lower kingdom in order to become an Emperor. Being in full mastery of Himself. And by Spirit, to be absolutely clear, we mean God, divinity, who never mixes with any type of fault, who is perfect in Himself, but He wishes to acquire more knowledge of Himself by commanding these lower sephiroth, spheres.
We as a soul in Malkuth, in order to ascend, we must first learn to descend, to comprehend our errors, to change them, to eliminate them, our defects, etc. For as the Book of Isaiah 40:4 states:
"Every valley shall be exalted and every mountain and hill be made low and the crooked shall be made straight and the rough places plain." ―Isaiah 40:4
Our Spirit precisely has all the qualities of richness, of beatitude, of peace, of wisdom, of knowledge, and experience Whom we seek to fully develop in us through practical works.
In this card, we see that the Emperor sits upon a cubic stone. Our Spirit sits upon this perfected stone known as Yesod in the Kabbalah, the foundation of our spiritual temple.
Within that stone we find a cat. A cat is a lunar creature. We know that cats like to prowl about at night. They are most active in the nocturnal hours. And therefore, this cat represents the creative energies of Yesod, because Yesod in Kabbalah is related to the moon. This power represented by a cat is the creative sexual energy, which the Emperor, the real Being within us, sits upon.
That stone is cubic, perfected, chiseled; meaning that energy has been fully refined in the work of sexual alchemy between husband and wife.
He sits with a hat that resembles an alchemical furnace from the medieval tradition with a still represented above, with that curvature of His hat, His bonnet. The base represents the Chakra Muladhara amongst the Hindus, which is where the sacred fire of Devi Kundalini rests in sleep and waits to be awakened between husband and wife.
We have the curvature of the hat representing the furnace in which the fire of the creative energy rises and it is a symbol of our body as a chimney, as a temple that contains within it the sacred fire, which can be elevated from sex, up to the brain into a distillery, which in alchemical traditions, is the laboratory of the alchemist. A distillery represents the brain in which that refined element, that purified metal, that purified substance, illuminates the mind. The brain is the distillery in which it receives the creative sexual potential.
The four corners of his bonnet represent the four elements, and in order for an Emperor to be seated upon His throne within our psyche, which is our spinal column, the Emperor must be in command of our air, our fire, our water, and our earth, which we are going to be explaining in depth today.
Of course, to do that, we must become poor in spirit, humble. To be humble means to acknowledge our defects: how we use the elements of God in an impure fashion. How we use the air of our mind, for projects and plans, which are really empty of any spiritual end. Thoughts, concepts, ideas, which really have no actuality or foundation in reality. Negative thoughts. Wishing ill of others.
Likewise, our fires of our heart. Emotions of anger, resentment, etc., inflame us and burn away our potential for genuine development.
In the waters of our vitality, our creative energies, are usually wasted, expelled through futile efforts or futile engagements. We waste energy in many ways.
Then physically, we must take care of this body, this earth.
All those four elements relate to Malkuth, which is our kingdom. Our physical body is Malkuth, but we need to become kings of our earth. We need to be in control of these elements.
The four corners of the bonnet also refer to not only the four elements, but the four gospels. Each of the gospels relate to the four elements of alchemy. They also relate to the four Vedas in the Hindu tradition.
He carries a staff of power in his right hand, a symbol of the spine, and as we have explained extensively in this course, the spine is the seat of will power, the seat of our Spirit. Our inner Spirit can work through our spinal column if we know how to channel forces correctly from sex to the brain, and then likewise submitting it to the heart.
That spinal column is the staff of life, the Tree of Life. We could not live and exist if it were not for our spinal column. Spiritually speaking, it is the same. We cannot exist spiritually. We cannot know divinity unless we awaken the creative fires and raise them up the spine. This is the power known as Kundalini or as alchemists state, אזות Azoth, which we will also explain in depth today.
We also see the staff represented in the waters of the card, the bottom third, a symbol of the staff of the shepherds. The shepherd is a representation of anyone who is following the path to Christ. Who is working to teach the sheep, lead the sheep through the doorway, ד Daleth, that leads to genuine knowledge, genuine experience. We will talk about that at the end of this lecture today.
We find some other interesting symbols in this glyph. We find the sign of Aquarius in the bottom right, which symbolically or etymologically hides Aqua / Aries. Aqua meaning “water.” Aries, signifying the God of War, Samael, who is the regent of Mars, the power of the fire of creative energy within sex.
So Aquarius hides the symbol of aqua / Aries, water and fire. We know that the water represents our seminal matter, our semen: whether it be in a man or a woman. Aries is the creative fire that rests in that sexual power, that sexual element. But Aqua-Aries can also refer to aqua / aeris, meaning “air.”
We find the sign of Aquarius, the sign of the water bearer, particularly pertinent to the study of this card. It is through the water and the fire of creation in which we give birth to our Spirit within us. We give birth to our development, psychologically speaking.
Genesis: The Path of Initiation
The Book of Genesis, Bereshit, is a teaching of initiation. If we wish to enter the higher dimensions, we need to learn to be initiated, but it doesn't mean to follow any physical group, but to perform specific psychological works. We do so by working with the water and the fire, the waters of sex, transforming that energy through specific practices, especially through a matrimony; conserving that water and raising that fire within or within oneself, inward and upward to the brain. Then likewise submitting it to the heart.
This is the hidden teaching within Genesis.
בְּרֵאשִׁית בָּרָא אֱלֹהִים אֵת הַשָּׁמַיִם וְאֵת הָאָֽרֶץ
Bereshit Bara Elohim At Hashamayim Vay’at Ha’aretz
בְּרֵאשִׁית Bereshit is typically translated, "In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth." What are this heavens that the Lord is creating? It is not physical. It is not literally a history. It is a symbol of initiation.
“In wisdom,” sometimes the Zohar translates of the Book of Genesis, "in wisdom Elohim creates."
בְּרֵאשִׁית Bereshit can also refer to ברית אש Berit Esh. Berit means “covenant, pact.” אש Esh means “fire.” בְּרֵאשִׁית Bereshit is an interesting word. It can be really dissected in many ways. But in the way that I am giving it to you today, בְּרֵאשִׁית Bereshit can be acrostically, ברית אש Berit Esh: “pact of fire.”
“The pact of fire created Elohim,” created the Gods, created the initiates, the spiritual illuminated masters. אש Esh means “fire” and a pact is a covenant.
The sacred ark, arcanum, law of the covenant of God to humanity, is sexual alchemy. A husband and wife, by learning to conserve the waters of sex and transform it, can become Gods, Elohim. So:
בְּרֵאשִׁית בָּרָא אֱלֹהִים
Bereshit Bara Elohim, or:
ברית אש אֱלֹהִים
Berit Esh Elohim
“The pact of fire created the gods, the initiates.”
אֵ Alelph ת Tav is אֵת At and signifies all the principles of God: the first and the twenty second letter of the Hebrew alphabet. The first and last letters, Alpha Omega. As Christ said, “I am” in the Book of Revelations, “(Α) Alpha and (Ω) Omega.”
All the principles of God are manifested in that person who is working with the pact of fire―all the Hebrew letters themselves.
שָּׁמַיִם Shamayim means “heavens,” literally translated. But if you say שָּׁמַיִם Sha-mayim, and break down the Hebrew letters, you find מַיִם mayim, which means “water,” and ש Shin, which means “fire.” It literally translates as “fiery waters.”
“By the pact of fire, Elohim was created” through all the principles of God, אֵת At: Aleph Tav, “and the fiery waters,” the heavenly matter, the spiritual work.
What are these fiery waters? They relate to the science of דעת Da’ath in Kabbalah, the teachings of the Tree of Life, the hidden sephirah that is implied in the throat, because through the speech, we create.
Husband and wife, through mantras and sexual alchemy, by pronouncing sacred vowels, create something spiritually within them. They work with the fiery waters. Those waters that are inoculated with flame is precisely when a man and wife are connected.
Question: Wouldn't the fiery water relate to the semen itself?
Instructor: It is the semen that has been inoculated in the sexual act.
Yesod is our vital waters, which contain the fire, ש Shin, but when husband and wife are working in tantrism and pronouncing mantras, they are raising that fiery water up the spine through the power of דעת Da’ath. This is the heavenly waters, sometimes known as Akash, in eastern traditions.
But we find that the spirit of God is the one who was hovering over the face of the waters, the רוח אלוהים Ruach Elohim mentioned in Genesis. He is the one in our spinal column who controls that energy and learns to circulate it within us.
אֵת הַשָּׁמַיִם וְאֵת הָאָֽרֶץ
(He created) the heavens and the earth.
What is this earth? It is our body Malkuth, which contains all the archetypes of divinity which we need to work with and command. To obey the divine orders of our inner Spirit through the work of chastity within alchemy, so that we can enter as a humble person. As a darvish, dervish, a poor initiate, recognizing our misery and wanting to acquire more―that knowledge of more. That treasure is known in the Hadith Qudsi amongst the Muslims:
"I was a hidden treasure and I wished to be known, so I created creation, mankind, then made Myself known to them, and they recognized Me." ―Hadith Qudsi
This is the meaning of Allah speaking to humanity, who is a symbol of our Spirit, our Emperor. We can call him יהוה Jehovah, or better said אל El.
It is better if we say his name is אל El in Kabbalah, which means God. He is that wisdom and treasure we seek, who we contain within our body and whom we need to work with and transform, as represented by the serpent that is raised above the middle of his eyebrow, on His bonnet.
That is the raising serpent Kundalini, the power of אזות Azoth, that is fully manifested up the spine, because the spine is precisely the staff of power in which a master commands. When that spinal column is illuminated with אזות Azoth, with the creative fire, one is a master. One who has raised that serpent Kundalini.
On the left-hand side, we see the symbol of Uranus, and it is a Chaldean word. Ur means light, or fire. Anas means water. Uranus is a planet associated with Chokmah, Christ, but Ur-anas is precisely the fire and water of Christ that we carry within in our sexual matter.
As the waters of Genesis that we work with, the Spirit works with, notice that Aqua-Aries, the water and breath, the wind, is the power of divinity that we work with in alchemy. When a husband and wife are connected, they learn to control the breath, to pronounce mantras, to love each other in a divine and pure sense, without any lust, but to be connected sexually and to enjoy the delights of love in complete harmony and unity with each other.
So they work with breath, Aeris, the God Aeolus the amongst the Greeks, god of the wind―the prana, the א Aleph, as we talked about in our first lecture in this course, in order to dominate the waters. רוח אלוהים Ruach Elohim is the Spirit of God and Ruach, as we explained in our previous lecture, relates to breath as well. The breath of God, who hovers over the face of the waters, is precisely our Spirit who commands and raises the energies up our spine within us.
The Kabbalistic Significance of Four
Some other interesting correlations is that the number four relates to four ages within any race or humanity, such as the golden age, the silver age, the copper, and iron age, the latter in which we are in presently. We also study the four pillars of gnosis: science, mysticism, art, philosophy, of which we give a course and you can access on our website [Fundamentals of Gnosticism].
Now in order to become an initiate, we work with the four elements. The waters, the fire, the air within our earth, our body. Meaning, our air which is our mind. The fire within our heart. The waters within our sexual organs, and our physicality our earth.
The number four, psychologically, building off this alchemical and kabbalistic analysis, relates to the four ways. Or the Fourth Way, better said, by the teachings of Gurdjieff and Ouspensky. Ouspensky spoke abundantly about four paths of spirituality. There is the fakir, there is the monk, there is the yogi, and then there is the path of the gnostic, the balanced human being.
Our Emperor learns to conquer our inner kingdom precisely through the fourth path mentioned by Ouspensky and by Gurdjieff.
The Four Spiritual Paths
In the first path, the fakir only develops willpower in relation to dominating instinct. Fakirs are people who learn to endure heat and cold living out in the in the open, sleeping on beds of nails, performing very severe austerities, in order to develop will to command the physical body.
They develop willpower, but they don't develop conscious willpower. They have a certain dominance over the instincts of the physicality, but it doesn't mean that they are awakening their consciousness in a spiritual sense, in a most objective sense. That is a type of severity or extreme practice that we don't recommend, and which, being educated, according to Ouspensky, we obviously see the pitfalls of that type of thinking that way.
A monk solely develops their emotional center, their heart through prayer. They don't necessarily develop will or consciousness, but they develop a sense of sentiment and connection with divinity based on their heart.
A yogi studies the mind through scripture and through meditation and develops powers relating with the intellect.
Each of these former three paths relate to the three mother letters of Kabbalah. Aleph relates with the air, the mind, the breath, because our thoughts our aerial in nature. They are like clouds. They constantly shift, fluctuate, appear, and disappear. If you awaken your consciousness in the astral plane and invoke a master to ask them, "What is my level of being? What is the nature of my mind like?" They will show you the sky, because in the astral plane, that dimension is symbolic. They will teach you things relating to your psyche that manifest within the landscape.
The mind relates to the air, א Aleph. ש Shin, the fire, relates to the heart, our emotions. As I said before, we can be inflamed with love or hatred. It is a fiery element. The monks develop the fires of the heart, but exclusively only that center. They don't necessarily develop their intellect in balance. Normally they don’t work with מ Mem, water, מים mayim and מ mem relates again to our third center, related to sexuality, the creative energies, the semen.
A fakir develops willpower to control הָאָֽרֶץ ha’aretz, the earth, our physicality. The monk develops the heart, emotional sentiment, (ש Shin, fire). The yogi develops the mind (א Aleph, air).
But these three paths are not balanced. They are extreme. They only develop one center over the other. We have the intellectual brain, the emotional brain, and the motor-instinctive sexual brain. The intellectual brain is the center of our thought, or manifests our thought. Our emotional brain manifests our emotions and feelings, and our motor-instinctive-sexual brain is a conglomeration of intelligences, physical and psychological, that process our movement, our instincts, our impulses, and our sexuality.
The path of the Gnostic is much more comprehensive, symbolized by this cross of the Rosicrucians. Within the cross, the Fourth Way, we work in sexual alchemy (the sexual waters, מ Mem). The cross is a symbol of a matrimony. The vertical beam is a symbol of the phallus. The horizontal beam is a symbol of the uterus. Within the crossing of man and woman, we work with all the twenty-two archetypes of God.
Notice here that we have the twenty-two letters of the Hebrew alphabet and that these twenty-two letters each represent a principle of nature. A law of nature. An arcanum. So, these are the twenty-two arcana of the tarot, the Torah, the law, upon which the Book of Genesis and the whole Old Testament is composed.
And "the heavens…” ―Genesis 1:1
When men and women are performing ברית אש Berit Esh, the pack of fire, they are working with those twenty-two archetypes mentioned in the cross of the Rosicrucians.
אֵת הַשָּׁמַיִם At Shamayim: The twenty-two letters, the twenty-two principles of God, the twenty-two arcana of the tarot―we are creating and working with the fiery waters of sex, of דעת Da’ath, of γνῶσις Gnosis.
The Kundalini and the Kundabuffer
Ouspensky and Gurdjieff knew these teachings, but they didn't give it openly and they made certain mistakes in relation to confusing the Kundalini with Kundabuffer. Kundabuffer is the tale of Satan, for when the energy of sex is expelled, the body assimilates, the mind assimilates, negative forces, atoms, energies, relating to the inferior aspect of the Tree of Life called Klipoth, which are the hell realms, and then that energy, instead of ascending up the spine, it descends. It forms the tail of the demons in the astral body.
But the Kundalini is worked with through husband and wife exclusively.
We enter initiation precisely through working with the cross. Through the cross we work with the three mother letters of Kabbalah. The other letters have a lesser role we could say, but important to the organization of the different worlds of Kabbalah, the Tree of Life, etc. The Fourth Way teaching of Gurdjieff and Ouspensky is about balancing the elements, becoming equilibrated psychologically speaking. This is how we enter initiation.
As Samael Aun Weor states, "Initiation is your own life, lived intensely, with rectitude and with love."
Wisdom and love, two pillars of the Tree of Life: Jakin and Boaz, that hold up our temple.
Initiation doesn't necessarily refer to becoming part of a group, but learning to behave and comprehend how to live like an angel. A holy creature. A Chaioth Ha-Kadosh in Hebrew.
We find that the three elements relate to our psyche, as we have been explaining, and in order to become a balanced human being, we have to comprehend our thinking, our feeling, and our ways of acting. Our three brains: mind, heart, body. How they exist physically, but more importantly, how do we exist psychologically in this body? This is the path of self-observation, of analysis, of understanding ourselves.
The Law of Seven and the Balanced Human Being
This is important. We will be talking about this in the Arcanum Seven. The number seven is the law of organization, but I like to refer to Gurdjieff's and Ouspensky’s teaching about the seven types of human beings, especially in relation to the fourth type of human being, which is the topic of our lecture.
He refers to human beings being divided and organized in seven types in relation to the musical scale. From the lowest DO, to the highest TI. DO RE MI FA SO LA TI.
That scale represents classifications of human beings and we'll talk about the fourth one in particular.
The note DO relates to instinctive human beings. People who are only constantly on the move, don't rationalize, don't think. People in war are instinctive. They don't reason. They move, and if we are familiar with Alice in Wonderland, composed by someone who knew this path very well, the instinctive type of person is the White Rabbit. “I am late! I am late for a very important date!” He is always running around and has no control or understanding of him or herself. He is constantly on the move.
You have the emotional type of person related to the note RE, which relates to the Queen of Hearts who is always angry, "Off with his head!"
Then you have the third note, MI: the intellectual type of person who is related to the Mad Hatter. He has no coherence in his thoughts. His intellectual center is mad, insane, and the whole planet is full of them, even though they may seem like very reasonable people. But anybody who does not have the Spirit inside is a madman, a lunatic. Someone who follows the moon, mechanicity, habits, etc.
These three lower types of people, the instinctive, the emotional, and intellectual relate to the lower three paths we discussed: fakir, monk, and yogi, but, there is a superior type related to the note FA, which is the psychologically equilibrated human being. A person who is fully in control of his empire. That does not get identified with thought, the air. That does not get identified with emotions, the heart. That does not get identified with sex, with lust, desire, the waters.
In our exercises of yoga, we practice what we call runes, which are positions where we place our body in certain postures in association with the Nordic alphabet. It is a very famous practice we do, or well known within the Gnostic Tradition.
The Rune Fah in which we praise the sun, the Solar Logos, the Christ energy within nature and beg that force to enter the chakras of our palms through the different nadis of our centers, entering our body and Illuminating us with light.
We do mantras associated with that posture that looks like the letter F. The mantras FA, FE, FI, FO, FU. Those mantras help to activate the chakras and provide it with Christic energy. FA, as a musical note, is very important. It is the awakening of the consciousness, as we say in the Runic prayer, "Marvelous forces of love, revive my sacred fires [my sexual energy], so that my consciousness will awaken!" A balanced human being works with the Christic energy, who uses his willpower to obey the Spirit, so that he becomes an Emperor in command of himself.
Question: Fah raises what?
Instructor: The Rune Fa transmutes the energies of sex, because all the runes are practices we use to transmute energy, alchemy. Again, that science of transmuting base material into refine materials: how we transform our semen, the brute matter of the sexual matter into fire and light.
Ur-anas, or the sign of Aqua-Aries, Aquarius, is again the sign of the water carrier, which is a symbol of the dissemination of knowledge in an open fashion, but it also refers to how we carry our own waters. How we transmute them, transform them.
A balanced human being is someone who knows this Fourth Way, who is chaste, who does not fornicate and does not waste the energies and does not expel them and has a full balance of the waters, the fire, and the air of the psyche.
There are other types of human beings which are associated with the scale of seven notes. SOL, which is someone related to having created a solar astral body. LA associated with someone who created a solar mental body. TI associated with someone who created a solar causal body. If you are familiar with Kabbalah, you find that the Tree of Life explains this very well.
We talked about giving birth to the soul. Jesus said, "You must be born again of water and spirit." מ Mem and ש Shin. To be born is precisely through the womb of the Divine Mother, which in Hebrew is the letter associated with ה Hei. ה Hei can also be pronounced as a mantra, as in the mantra HUM, which is the symbol of the breath, the Spirit, Chesed.
Jesus said you must be born again of water and spirit. מ Mem and ש Shin. To be born again is precisely through the breath, because when a child is born, the first moment of their life, they inhale the air and they cry. These are the three elements manifesting in the physical body, of the birth of a child, but this is something symbolic too.
To be born of water and spirit is to be born in a matrimony, spiritually, because that which is born of flesh through the normal sexual act, that is flesh, and that which is born of Spirit in the same sexual act, but through certain procedures, is Spirit.
The Tree of Life, Initiation, and the Internal Bodies
We talk extensively in these studies that we need to create the soul or solar bodies.
Right now we have our physical body of which we are aware.
We may have some sense of energy, of having certain level of vitality which relates to Yesod.
We may become aware of our emotions or mood at certain points in time more than others, the heart, which is Hod, the astral emotional body.
We may become partially aware or be constantly subjected to our thinking, thoughts, ideas, which churn and fluctuate within our psyche. That is mind.
These lower four ספירת sephiroth [emanations or] spheres are called the lower four bodies of sin.
Again, it is important to note that this map expresses consciousness in different levels of manifestation. We obviously have the more material bodies or vehicles at the bottom, and the most refined energies at the top, represented by the trinity.
So, in the dream world, when we physically go to sleep, we leave our body and enter the astral world, Hod, the emotional plane. We may also exist in the mental plane, Netzach, the mind, in order to experience what we call dreams.
Those are bodies or vehicles that belong to nature typically. Most people don't have what are called solar bodies. We tend to exist in those dimensions during sleep in vehicles that belong to nature. They are lunar, mechanical.
If you awaken consciousness, you can see that the lunar bodies have a spectral ghost-like appearance, very dark, but solar bodies are luminous, light. A master has those bodies, meaning, by working with a spouse in Malkuth, the kingdom, they learn to conquer their empire.
They raise the Kundalini power up the physical spine to the brain. Next, after reaching the height of that scale, the seven notes, the seven chakras of the spine, illuminating all those centers, one takes that energy and raises it to a higher octave, relating to the vital body Yesod. But raising the Kundalini up the spine of that material body, that is in the fourth dimension, which penetrates our physical body, we then achieve that initiation.
Again, these are initiations relating to alchemy, marriage.
The first initiation of fire of the Kundalini we achieve in Malkuth.
When we raise the fire of sex up the spine of the vital body, we attain the second initiation of fire.
With the third initiation of fire, we are working with Hod, the astral body which in us is lunar, but when we raise the fire of Kundalini up the spine, up that body, we create a solar body in that vehicle.
Consider it like how a bird hatches from an egg. We don't see it from the outside, but psychologically, internally, it is gestating, giving birth to those vehicles in which one can travel consciously with awareness and full cognizance of oneself.
When we raise the fire of the Kundalini up the spine of the mental body, the world of the mind, we attain the fourth initiation of fire. We give birth to the solar mind. A mind that the only knows how to follow the will of Christ, that is not an animal mind, a mind full of defects, vices, errors, etc.
Lastly, by raising the Kundalini of the causal world, the causal body relating to Tiphereth, willpower, we create what is called the solar causal body, and these bodies are like a light bulb. If you want to transmit light, which is the Christic energy, fully and completely, you need to create these vehicles so that your mind, your heart, and your will can express Christ.
Someone who has created these bodies, who has reached the fifth initiation of fire in Tiphereth, can be called a twice born: someone who is born again.
So people in the Christianity who say, "I believe in Jesus and therefore I'm saved," who say, "I am born again" are ignorant, because you cannot be born except through sex, as Jesus taught. This is someone who has conquered their empire at the beginning levels, we could say. When we reach the fifth initiation of fire, we learn to obey our divine consciousness and our Spirit. One becomes a master, a מלך Melech, a king. Or, if one is a woman, a מלכה Melcah, a queen. But of course, the Spirit is the one who does all this work inside of us when we obey the orders of our divinity.
We want to work with the fire in the water of creative energy to give birth to the soul. The solar bodies internally, when we see them, are filled with light, beauty. When you invoke a master of the higher dimensions, when you are in the dream state, you see that they can appear to you with their solar vehicles, and they emanate power and beauty that is really indescribable, impossible to define.
When we work in initiation, we want to become like that. We want to conquer the empire of light, for as the gospels teach us or the New Testament, teaches us (paraphrased), “Heaven is taken by force, and only the violent take it by force.” [Matthew 11:12]
Heaven is taken by force by working with initiation. When we look at the three letters of Kabbalah: א Aleph, ש Shin, מ Mem, you can also say that א Aleph relates with ה Hei, an H sound, the breath. So you combine those three letters together ה Hei, ש Shin, מ Mem, and you spell השם Hashem which means the name. בורך השם אדון Baruch Hashem Adonai: “Blessed be the Name of the Lord,” say the kabbalists.
You spell Hashem backwards, you spell משה Moshe, Moses. Moses is a symbol of a master who was taken from the waters, because Moshe literally means “Born of fire and water,” because ה Hei refers to the womb. If you look at the sacred name of יהוה Jehovah, י Iod ה Hei ו Vau ה Hei, the letter ה H looks like a womb from which a child is gestated.
We know from the stories of the Old Testament that Moses was taken from the waters, from a basket or an ark you could say. A little ship. A minor arcanum or, better if we say, major arcanum, or the great arcanum, the great law, which is the teachings of alchemy according to Samael Aun Weor.
Moses is represented as the body of willpower and all the other bodies we created through alchemy, through marriage. Hidden within the name יהוה Iod-Havah, Jehovah, we also find the three elements of nature, as well as the earth. Better if we say the four elements. יהוה Iod-Havah in Hebrew is the holy name of God, which inappropriately, many Jews pronounce as אדון Adonai. Not the same meaning.
The sacred name of God and Chokmah in the Kabbalah is יהוה Iod-Havah. אדון Adonai is a sacred name of God in Malkuth. Each of the sephiroth of the Tree of Life have sacred names associated with God in the world of Atziluth, the world of archetypes, principles. So when we say יהוה Jehovah we referring to Christ amongst the kabbalists. Chokmah means wisdom and Christ is the energy of Chokmah. The wisdom of Chokmah, the insight of the Lord. You can also take this word יהוה Iod-Havah and break it down further. י Iod is masculine. הוה Havah is feminine. You could say Adam-Eve, man-woman. יהוה Iod-Havah is an acrostic which entails the teachings of alchemy, of a marriage.
Question: Just getting back to השם Hashem. Wouldn’t that be Ashem?
Instructor: You can say השם Hashem because the השם Hashem is the breath, the Spirit, which we pronounce in alchemy, but within ה Hei is the womb, is how the child is born, and then they take the first breath in order to live in that moment.
But Jehovah also relates to the four elements. We find that if we take this name and pronounce it in Latin, we hear the vowels IAO, another sacred name. It is important to step back and point out that יהוה Jehovah is a Tetragrammaton, a sacred four letter name of God. In many religions or certain religions, there are four letter names of divinity. Amongst the Jews it is יהוה Iod-Havah, Jehovah. Amongst the Muslims it is الله Allah, four letters.
Tetra means four. Gram means letter. Any four-lettered name of divinity in an any religion refers to Christ, Chokmah, but even if you pronounce that name Tetragrammaton in the astral plane, you can invoke divinity in that way. Any master of any particular interest you want to investigate.
A very sacred word. When you say Tetragrammaton, the angels look down at you and you can see them directly in the astral plane, and you can invoke whomever you want to speak with. But יהוה Jehovah, Iod-Havah is man-woman. י Iod, man. ה Hei: woman. The ו Vav represents the spine. It also can represent the phallus. ה Hei represents woman or water, we could say, and represents the uterus.
Within IAO, we find: igneous, aqua, origo―fire, water, and spirit. When we work in alchemy, the supreme mantra is IAO, according to Samael Aun Weor, the founder of the modern Gnostic Tradition. Within these three letters IAO are contained within the last ה Hei, because if you take the י Iod, ה Hei, ו Vau, and translate into Latin, you have IAO.
The ו Vav, the letter V, can be translated as Vau and sometimes it is used as a Vau sound in Hebrew. So it can be an “O.” י Iod, ה Hei, ו Vau is IAO. Those three elements are contained within the earth, ה Hei, the body.
The Elements of Alchemy
Alchemy teaches this tradition also very extensively too within Europe. In order to become an Emperor, we work with these elements. We work with the mantras IAO in sexual connection, with our wife, partner. Alchemy speaks abundantly about these principles.
The fire of sexuality, they [the medieval alchemists] refer to it as Sulfur. The water of sexuality the refer to as Mercury. And the Spirit, Origo, is the breath, the wind.
As Samael Aun Weor states in Alchemy and Kabbalah in the Tarot, he synthesizes for us the elements of alchemy, which are Salt, Mercury, Sulfur and Azoth.
The salt is the matter, meaning the brute entity of our semen, the physical waters, literally.
The mercury is the Ens Seminis. I believe is the term used by Paracelsus to refer to the entity of semen, the energies contained within those waters.
Then Azoth is the mysterious ray of the Kundalini.
Azoth is the Kundalini in the alchemical tradition. When you spell זֹאתה Hazoth you spell it with ה Hei, ז Zayn, א Aleph, ת Tav. ה Hei relates to the breath, the wind, the womb of the Divine Mother. ז Zayin, the seventh letter of Kabbalah, we will talk about in the seventh arcanum, represents a sword, looks like a sword, with a Z sound. ז Zayin, looks like ו Vav, but has an extended top and represents a sword, the kundalini that rises up the spine in order to aid the initiates in their battle against their defects. א Aleph again is the wind and ת Tav is the final letter, representing as the seal or covenant upon which one is initiated: the twenty-second letter of the Hebrew alphabet, the twenty-second arcanum.
We work with the four elements with our practices of meditation, but especially in a matrimony. The fire, water, and air represent aspects of our psyche, but also our body that we need to work with, and when we learn to work with these alchemical principles in ourselves, we are working with the secret teachings of the four gospels.
The Four Gospels and the Mystery of the Sphynx
The four elements relate to the four gospels themselves. The four gospels, or the better said, the four elements, relate to the animals of alchemy. The Chaioth Ha-Kadosh: the holy creatures mentioned in the Book of Ezekiel, which are before the Lord of God, symbolize the elements that we are mastering in ourselves. The fire represents the lion. The lion, the fire, and is the gospel of Mark. The water, the mercury, represented by a man is the Book of Matthew.
Question: Excuse me, water is man? It’s amazing how, you know, in all the other teachings, relate man to the air in traditional decks.
Instructor: We say it relates to man because a real human being, a Hum-Man, a mind made into the image of Hum, the Spirit, is born from the waters like Moses or any master.
The eagle represents the air, the Book of John. Lastly, we have the Book of Luke representing the earth and the bull.
These four animals are synthesized in what we call the Sphinx, which is a mythical creature associated with Egypt, which Oedipus the King answered his riddle in order to save Thebes in the famous play.
That riddle that the sphinx asks any initiate or any poor person trying to enter initiation is, “How do you become a human being? How do you answer my riddle, my form?” Which is: the wings of an eagle, the hooves of a bull or an ox, the paws of a lion, and the face of a man.
So how one become a real human being is by working with those elements in alchemy.
Oedipus became king because he answered the riddle, so he became a master at that point. But of course, there is more work to be achieved by any Emperor or any master who is perfecting him or herself.
The Elementals of Fire, Air, Water, and Earth
The salamanders, in correspondence with the elements, relate to the fire. There are elemental creatures in nature that exist and permeate all the elements, and any alchemist, any master, learns to work with those elementals in themselves and also outside.
As I said to you previously, a real magician is somebody who works with elemental magic, ceremonial magic, and sexual magic. Relating to Netzach, the mind; Hod, the emotions; and Yesod, vitality.
The salamanders are the creatures that live in the fire, whether in the candle or in our sexual energy. They are innocent creatures of nature. They don't have any defect. They simply obey the commandments of the divine forces or intelligences that govern all the cosmos. The salamanders are the creatures of fire we have in the fire of sex which we enliven through husband and wife.
The undines or the nereids relate to the water. They govern our sexual waters themselves.
Then we have the gnomes that govern the earth, who live within the stones, but also within our physical body. Our physical body cannot exist without the help of those intelligences known as the gnomes that help to transfer certain substances in the body.
Then we have the air, the sylphs or sylphids relate to the wind, the breath. In our breathing, our lungs, we work with them all the time but there is a way to work consciously with these elements, with a certain discipline.
We need the four elements or elementals to work for us in order to become an Emperor.
The nereids: we need them to be docile and tame the waters in our body; they have to be controlled, especially when one is sexually connected, because if one also builds up too much fire, one will lose the energy, lose the waters and the earth will become depleted, our physicality.
The salamanders help us for heat. When a husband and wife unite and they are inflamed with divine love, the sexual fire is what gives them life or attraction, magnetism. Those are the salamanders at work.
And when we say that the gnomes themselves, when we are working in a matrimony, are the ones that transform the lead of our personality into the gold of the spirit. The gnomes are the ones who learn to take the gold that is within the semen itself and transfer it up the spine, up the mountain range of the spinal column.
In esotericism, a mountain represents the spine which we have to climb in the path of initiation.
The winds must be controlled the sylphs. If we are breathing too quickly when we are connected sexually, the energy is not going to go inward and upward, but instead inward and out. People who are inflamed or too excited sexually with their breath, breathe too quickly. Their exhalations are more pronounced, meaning that the energy is going from in to out, not out to in. That is why they lose their energy very quickly. So, the breath has to be controlled. The sylphs have to work upon the waters of our sex through mantra, through prayer, and through full awareness about what one is doing.
If we listen to the undines, meaning our lust that is enmeshed with in the waters themselves, we will be tempted and we will shipwreck ourselves like Odysseus was nearly shipwrecked in The Odyssey. He was riding a ship back to Ithaca after the battle of Troy and that is a beautiful alchemical teaching of how through the ship, the arcanum, the ark, he was traveling island to island, which is chakra to chakra up the spine, across the Mediterranean, symbol of our waters of sex, in order to return to Ithaca, return that energy back to the crown, which is the kingdom that he originates from.
But of course, Odysseus made certain mistakes, such as letting himself be tempted by the sirens. He commanded his shipmates to tie him to a staff, or better said to a mast and when they passed the certain area of the sea in which the sirens were well known, he heard their calls and was ranting and raving to be allowed to go overboard, and to take the ship over to them. That is how lust works.
Question: But I recall, correct me if I am wrong, where he was tempted was off the shore of Naples, but that he had time to make it right. They had tied him to a mast… that part of Greek mythology, geographically I remember.
Instructor: Geography is used psychologically. It is a representation of certain alchemical teachings. The Red Sea mentioned in the Old Testament is the waters of sex, which the Egyptians are drowned in, meaning our defects, our egos.
But when Odysseus hears the sirens, he wants to go overboard, or better said, he wants to take the ship and go over to them. Meaning, he wants to shipwreck and that is the teaching of how lust, the "I,” tempts the mind and the heart in order to abandon the ark. The arcanum, the law, the teachings of chastity, of sexual purity.
In the epic poem The Odyssey, Odysseus’ shipmates had beeswax in their ears so they couldn't hear the sirens themselves. But Odysseus was tied to his mast, meaning his spinal column. The only thing that kept him from going overboard was his willpower, his spine, and the help of divinity in the ship, the shipmates to get him out of there, to get past the temptation.
So, the undines relate to the waters, and we need to work with those elements didactically.
Let us talk a little bit more about the ד Daleth. Psalm 119 speaks or begins with the letter ד Daleth through its verses 25 to 32, and synthesizes many of the things that we have been talking about and the path that is required for any initiate in order to enter into the higher mysteries, to become an Emperor.
“My soul (Nephesh) is reduced to dust. Give me life according to your Word.
“I have confessed my ways and you responded to me. Teach me your statutes” (meaning: your laws, your commandments, the arcana, the twenty-two Hebrew letters of Kabbalah, and the twenty-two arcana of the tarot).
“Make me understand the path of your precepts and I will meditate on your wonders.
“My soul (Nephesh) drops with grief. Strengthen me according to your Word (Chokmah, Christ).
“Remove me from the path of lying and favor me with your law (your arcanum, which is the pact of fire, ברית אש Berit-Esh, the law of divinity works through sexual alchemy. That is the law, the arcanum, the teaching, which is now being made public).
“I have chosen the path of truth (which we can say is ת Tav in Hebrew, the last letter of the kabbalistic alphabet, the seal of truth); “I have held the level of your judgments.
"I have clung to your testimonies. O Jehovah (יהוה Iod-Havah). Do not put me to shame.
"I will walk on the path of your commands; thus you enlarge my heart."
ד Daleth is very significant. It literally means door and relates to דעת Da’ath, which we have been explaining in depth today, the science of alchemy, sexual knowledge, conscious knowledge or experience of divinity.
It relates to darvish, dervish, a poor person and as we seek to enter initiation, we must become poor in spirit, humble. To recognize that only divinity matters.
The letter ד Daleth is also hidden within the word שדי Shaddai or שדי אל חי Shaddai El Chai, which means “Almighty Living God.” It is a sacred name of God associated with Yesod in Kabbalah, because the word שדה Shadeh means “field” and the field is precisely where gestates the vegetation, life, which we also find the most subtle of all creatures: the serpent mentioned in the bible.
“The serpent that was the most subtlest of all is within the field,” שדה Shadeh, signifying the power of שדי אל חי Shaddai El Chai, the Almighty Living God, which is the creative potential, again, sexuality.
On the doorposts of Jewish homes, and also institutions, they have the word written אל שדי El Shaddai, and they often times will kiss the lips and touch the symbol as they enter and exit out of the rooms. The door represents the door to enter Eden, into initiation, which is the narrow door of sex. A difficult path to control one's lust and to fully extirpate it. That door is the power of שדי Shaddai, the field, the serpent.
Question: Is this why it said be as wise as serpents?
Instructor: Yes, be wise as serpents with that energy, in control, and as harmless as doves, meaning the Holy Spirit, which is to be chaste, to be pure.
ד Daleth also relates to סוד Sod or סודי Sodi, which you can translate backwards if you had י Iod at the end of סודי Sodi, you spell יסוד Yesod. סודי Sodi means “secret.”
This is the secret teaching that was hidden for millennia, which is now made public in the era of Aquarius.
The Symbol of David in the Old Testament
Lastly, we have דוד David, דוד David who is the king of the Old Testament, and his name literally means “boiler” in Hebrew. David killed Goliath with a stone, which is a size of one's hand. A sling and a stone and his faith in God.
Goliath is represented as his lust, his desires, his defects, and through the stone of Yesod, the secret teachings of alchemy, he conquered his inner beast, and became king of Israel.
דוד David is a symbol of ד Daleth, ו Vav, ד Daleth. ד Daleth can signify דעת Da’ath acrostically. ו Vav, the sixth letter, relates to the sixth sephirah of the Tree of Life, which is תפארת Tiphereth and then יסוד Yesod ending in ד Daleth is hidden in also in the last letter of דוד David's name, and it literally means “boiler.”
To boil alchemically the impurities of the psyche within the sexual matrass. The word crucible, crux, cross in alchemical terms, is where we get the word cross. Crucible is a metallurgical element or machine in which you melt impure substances in order to get pure substances. So that the fire of the sexual act, one can remove the impurities of the psyche, of the soul. Likewise, it is on the mattress, the bed, where the couple forges the soul, working in the alchemical matrass to destroy impurities and awaken Kundalini.
דעת Da’ath in this image of the Tree of Life relates to the first letter of David. ו Vav, תפארת Tiphereth, willpower, is the work of the spinal column. Through the work of the spine and with knowledge gained from alchemy, we learn to control יסוד Yesod, the final ד Daleth. That is how David conquered Goliath, his inner beast.
To conclude will leave off with a beautiful teaching from the Book of John (1-18) with some Gnostic exegesis explaining the alchemical and kabbalistic significance of this passage, which relates to what we have been discussing.
Jesus speaks to His disciples:
1. Verily, verily, I say unto you, he that entereth not by the door (of שדי אל חי Shaddai El Chai, the power of God Yesod into the sheepfold of Malkuth) but climbs up some other way, the same is a thief and a robber.
2. But he (Chokmah the Christ) that entered by the door (of שדי אל חי Shaddai El Chai, this foundation stone of the temple) is the shepherd of the sheep (meaning: those people who are seeking to enter into initiation).
3. To him, (Chokmah) the porter (the initiates of שדי אל חי Shaddai El Chai) opens and the sheep (the souls of Malkuth who seek to become initiates) hear his voice and he calls his own sheep (or souls) by name, and lead them (out into the higher sephiroth).
4. And when He (Chokmah) puts forth his own sheep (meaning: the masters or shepherds of initiation who lead the flocks to the higher dimensions), he goes before them, and the sheep (the spiritual masters) follow him for they know His voice (meaning that Word has been made flesh in them through initiation).
5. And a stranger (meaning the ego, the black magicians, the fornicators) will they not follow, but flee from Him, for they know not the (fornicating) voice (or fornicator voice) of strangers (the strange ones are, of course, the demons of Klipoth, strangers to God).
6. This (kabbalistic) parable spoke Jesus (our Inner Christ) unto them, but they understood not what things which he spoke unto them.
7. Then said Jesus (the Intimate Christ) unto them again: Verily, verily I say unto you, I (Chokmah Christ, through the power of שדי אל חי Shaddai El Chai), am the door (the door into entering the higher sephiroth of the Tree of Life) of the sheep (or souls, Nephesh, who are still animalistic, imprisoned in Assiah, the world of matter, of Malkuth and of hell, Klipoth).
8. “All that ever came before me are thieves and robbers (meaning those false prophets and demons and black magicians who teach one to be an animal in the sexual act) but the sheep (the souls who are trapped in Assiah and Klipoth, Malkuth, in hell) did not hear them.
9. I (Chokmah Christ through Shaddai El Chai) am the door, by me if any humble person, (poor person, a darvish, through initiation) enters in, he shall be saved, and shall go out (and in through the door of שדי אל חי Shaddai El Chai) and find pasture.
Again pasture relates to field, שדה Shadeh. Someone who has found pasture for the sheep is in the heavenly realms, through the power of שדי Shaddai.
10. “The thief (meaning the Ba’alim in Hebrew, the black magicians, the devils or fornicators) come not but for to steal ,and to kill, and to destroy (the soul): I (Chokmah Christ through שדי אל חי Shaddai El Chai) have come that they (parts of the soul) may have life and that they may have it more abundantly.
11. “I (Chokmah Christ through שדי אל חי Shaddai El Chai) am the good shepherd: the good shepherd (meaning through the initiations of the Tree of Life, through alchemy) gives his life for the sheep.
12. But he (the soul) that is a hireling (someone who only works selfishly) and not the shepherd (meaning a master of Major Mysteries) whose own sheep are not, he sees the wolf (meaning the black magicians) coming and leaves the sheep and flees: and the wolf catches them and scatters the sheep (into hell).
13. The hireling who only works (selfishly) flees because he is a hireling (who only works for himself) and he cares not for the sheep (or souls who are in Assiah or in Klipoth).
14. “I (Chokmah Christ through שדי אל חי Shaddai El Chai) am the good shepherd and know my sheep and am known of mine.
15. As the Father (Kether) knows me (through Da’ath, alchemy) even so I, the Father: and I (through the initiation of Tiphereth) lay down my life for the sheep.
16. And other sheep (souls) I have, which are not of this fold (of initiates), them also I must bring and they shall hear my voice, and there should be one fold of masters and one shepherd (which is Christ).
17. Therefore as my Father (Kether) loves me because I (Chokmah as the Son of Man, the power through שדי אל חי Shaddai El Chai) lay down my life that I may take it again.
18. No (selfish) man takes it from me but I (according to my initiation in Tiphereth) lay it down of myself, I have power to lay it down and (if the master chooses the fall) I have power to take it again. This commandment have I received of my Father (Kether)." ―John 10:1-18
In every lecture we give certain practices in order to help you digest and apply the principles we teach. To become an Emperor, we learn to work with conjurations and prayers, as well as the four exorcisms of the elements. There are exorcisms or prayers we perform which will be doing today at the end of this lecture in order to invoke divinity and control the elements. The exorcisms are related to fire, air, water, and earth which we will be explaining after the lecture.
Questions and Answers
Question: It's amazing when you mention Alice in Wonderland and I thought about The Wizard of Oz and the spine may mean the...
Instructor: Wizard of Oz, עץ החיים Otz Chaim, Wizard of the Tree of Life. And of course that the movie does a very good job of this; it shows the three coils at the beginning of the road that leads to the Emerald City, which is Ithaca for Odysseus, the crown chakra, the kingdom of the Wizard of Oz, the Magician, or the priests of Oz.
Question: The Scarecrow as you think, and the Tin Man, as you feel....
Instructor: The Magician is the only one who is going to give Dorothy, the soul, or better said, the Tin Man, a new heart, a solar astral body. The Scarecrow, a solar mental body, a new mind. The Lion, representing will power, a new causal body. The Magician is the one who is going to create the solar bodies by walking up the path, the golden path of the spine that leads to the City of Emeralds: the Church of the Saints.
Question: That being said, all of this allegory, you were mentioning the mythology and there was mention that Shakespeare was an occultist. Is there anyone in our present time that is an occultist that is giving out information, whether it be Lord of the Rings?...
Instructor: Lord of the Rings. Even Tolkien stated as a preface to one of his books, specifically, and “People think that there is some type of hidden meaning to my stories.” He said, “I just wrote to entertain people.” But he was a very good philologist, a philosopher of language. So, there are certain things that he imitated that were very accurate.
Question: Kind of like Star Wars, did they do the same thing?
Instructor: Actually, Lucas' films were based off the teachings from The Hero with a Thousand Faces by Joseph Campbell. Those were works of imitations, those are works of imi-ta-tus, the one who imitates, but to find works of initiates, one has to become an initiate and to understand it from experience.
Question: Why do you think like Carlos Castaneda... why do you think they use allegory? Obviously, this information if of the utmost importance, why isn't it just thrown at us and say, “Hey look... we have to figure things out...”
Instructor: Many writers of the Piscean era were marked by conservatism. So the Age of Pisces, which ended at the beginning of the Era of Aquarius, in the 60’s, was an era where this type of knowledge was meant to be hidden, not given openly.
The sign of the water carrier of Aquarius, of how to become an Emperor, by following the work of Aqua-Aries, was only given just recently in the writings of, specifically, Samael Aun Weor.
There are other writers who knew this teaching very well and talk about it in an implicit manner, because they weren't authorized by the White Lodge to give it openly. So it is good to read those writers like Ouspensky, Gurdjieff, Alice in Wonderland, many Piscean teachings, with the Aquarian doctrine, which we are teaching now openly so that you can see that there is really a whole teaching here. There is nothing separate that this knowledge was given many times, but in a veiled form, because they weren't authorized to teach openly.
Question: How come they weren't authorized?
Instructor: They weren't authorized by the White Lodge because this knowledge is powerful. You either create an angel or a demon, based on what you do with your work. So, it's a matter of will.
Comment: We are creating a lot of demons...
Instructor: No, have faith. Have faith in Jehovah, as David did, because David, through the power of Yesod, and his will, killed Goliath. Killed the giant, and many of the myths of great heroes killing the beast was very prominent, and so they are teaching that it is very possible, and you will do it if you learn to become humble, to enter that doorway. To be humble like a dervish or a fakir, a poor person, to enter that narrow door. It is difficult, but if you want it, you will do it. If your Being wants you to do it, you will do it no matter what the cost will be.
Question: Relating to postures, you mentioned the Runes and yoga postures, and feet on the wall [the Viparita Karani Mudra], will that help with bringing the Pranic force down the spinal column into the brain and reciting a mantra at the same time?
Instructor: Yes, when you work with the Viparita Karani Mudra, which, for those not familiar with this exercise, you place your legs against a wall and lay your back on the floor. You can simply concentrate and visualize certain energies in fluctuation, such as the practice of the Holy Eight, which we teach in the book called Sacred Rites of Rejuvenation, or you can pronounce mantras or transmute in order to continue the circulation of energies. You can work with exercises like Ham-Sah as well when you are lying on your back.
So I invite you to reflect. At the end of this lecture we will do the exorcisms of the elements. But learn to become poor in spirit by analyzing the elements of the psyche. Our thoughts, our feelings, our body, our impulses, because that is the entrance way to enter through a matrimony, especially, but we begin this path by learning to control the elements, as we taught in the Magician card.
Question: I know we’ve talked about this last week, but the Catholic Church, obviously the priests practice abstinence and this and that, why is it that they are having those defects of, you know… because they know that they are not supposed to spill the semen…
Instructor: Because if you conserve the water, but don't transform it, there is no Genesis there.
Question: But aren't they transforming through prayer and meditation?
Instructor: They are not, obviously, if you look at the results. By their by their fruits you will know them. Certain people, they like to pray and like I said, with the path of the monk, they can develop certain qualities of heart, but it doesn't mean that they are transmuting. It doesn't mean that they are eliminating their defects.
Question: So, they could be drinking and doing stuff...
Instructor: I really don't know what they are doing, but I know that in my encounters with certain priests, they are very degenerate. Not all of them, of course. But people who abstain from sex and don't circulate that energy inward and upward, become homosexual, or they degenerate. They lose their soul, you could say.
Abstention is not enough. You have to learn how to create with that force because if the waters accumulate, obviously the energy, the fire has to go somewhere. If it is not being directed up the spine and just being contained, that fire becomes pestilent. It ferments and develops what we call in esotericism poisoniooskirian vibrations [the forces of extreme fanaticism and sexual perversion], which I believe is the term that Gurdjieff used. It is an objective language. But the thing is abstinence is not enough. You have to circulate the forces because fire has to act. If you don't control the fire, you'll be burned by it.
Question: But that could also be through physical activities, or music or acting? That is the creative energy.
Instructor: There are many ways to channel that energy. Transmutation is the most important, but we can learn to transmute by listening to good music, like the classical compositions, the Operas of Wagner, works of Puccini, Tchaikovsky; initiates who knew this teaching and were teaching how to elevate the soul from Malkuth to the Spirit. So their music conveys that path and can teach your consciousness something valuable [See the course: The Secret Teachings of Opera]. It also elevates the heart and you can learn to transmute energy while listening in ecstasy to Beethoven, especially.
Question: The downside of that, you talk about the accumulation, how energy builds up. You talk about the clergy and books talk about certain monasteries in Europe where there were outbreaks of sensuality [homosexual behavior]. I am wondering if this could have been one of the causes of it, this energy that is building up…
Instructor: If that fire is expelled then it is expelled, but if it is conserved and not transformed, it will develop a lot of problems. But there is no harm in transmuting, and actually, transmutation is the natural way for the body to exist. It is abnormal for us to have the energy expelled in a manner that it is common for animals. Animals procreate in that manner, but angels don't. So if you want to follow the path of an angel, you have to learn to engage with sex as an angel would.
Comment: The problem is even my friend, or I try to mention this to other people, then they automatically call you, “Oh! You’re racist or discriminative against gays!” This is all new to me, since I used to say, “Oh, this is how they were born.” No one ever has this knowledge that such behavior is degenerative. It’s not evil, just animal-based…
Instructor: We don't judge anybody here, because if we point the finger at someone, we have our thumb pointing to God saying, “Look at me,” and I have three fingers pointing at me for my own faults. Homosexuality is condemned in all religions. It is not something that you can practice if you want to unite with your inner Spirit, your inner Christ. Because man and woman, Jah-Havah works in a matrimony. So members of the same sex can't create a life. Same thing physically and spiritually. It is a matter of: as above so below.
Comment: Just to add to that, I think with Dion , and Gareth Knight, who was a prominent occultist, he wrote that the polarities are the same. It’s like a charge; it repels. It not’s natural, really. You need a positive and a feminine.
Comment: No, I agree. But now with the liberal movement, it’s like “Do as thou wilt,” so long as you don’t harm anyone.
Instructor: They have their beliefs and it's their way of thinking. What can you do?
Question: I am really learning stuff that I never knew, which I always thought, like the seven deadly sins and running amok in all of it. Just pure self-indulgence. The point is really what's ruining. It's not politics. It's not this and not that it's really that what happened in the sixties and what's happening now; pride is what's ruining the world and now you explain to people and suddenly they are like, “Oh, now you're in the religion now” all of a sudden.
Instructor: People only have their concepts, preconceived notions of what spirituality is, and they may have certain traumas associated with a certain upbringing that make them repulse to esotericism, specifically, but we always respect the will of others, such as Prophet Muhammad taught in the Qur’an. He said that there is no coercion in religion. If you want to offer someone this knowledge, you can. If they don't accept, that it's their business.
Don't worry about it. Mohammed was very concerned about the black magicians. He was trying to teach in Arabia at that time and the Lord, his inner Being said to him, "You are not a watcher over them. You give the knowledge and if they work with it, great, if not, it's their business." That is what the Qur’an teaches, and the Quran is very beautiful. It says, “Don't worry about people who are not believers,” المؤمنين Al-Muminin in Arabic. مؤمن Mumin, מים mayim, people who work with the waters, and the symbol of Islam, to submit to God, to enter that narrow doorway that leads to heaven is to submit through Islam, which is where you get the word peace Salam.
So you find peace, through submission to God, by working with the moon, the crescent moon of Yesod and the star of Venus, love, which is a matrimony. A symbol of the alchemical teaching.
You can give the knowledge and if they benefit, great. If they don't, it is their business. You know don't have to concern yourself with people who don't want to change. If they don't want to, it's on them.
So, in an ancient time, when this knowledge was given only secretly, there was certain excuses made that, well, they didn't know any better. But now we are in the Era of Aquarius, you can look on our websites: gnosticteachings.org and chicagognosis.ors as well, and you find the knowledge is given openly. People have access to this teaching now in a way that is unprecedented. So there is no excuse anymore, but you do what you can and don't fret over them.
Question: I have one about transmutation. Recently I sealed myself back up, but I find that I’m having a hard time transmuting. It’s almost like I’m using energy to become other faults, internal faults. Is that a bad thing?
Instructor: Well the energy, when you transmute it, that fire gives you light, and the best and the most reliable way to know that you are transmuting is if you are gaining not physical quality, but psychological. You have more insight into your anger, your fear, your pride, lust, desire, etc., and you are seeing your mind as it is, because when you work with that fire and that water, you create light and life. You start to become more sensitive. You understand how certain habits are negative, not just physical, but psychological, and you can gain a better sense of equanimity and compassion too.
Question: What I have been learning is that every little thing counts. Like what you pay attention to. Every little thing, what you watch on TV, what you listen to, what you read, what you pay attention to on the internet. There is not only one thing, it's every tiny moment...
Instructor: You feed your soul with the impressions you give it. Whether in books, movies, television, and practice especially. So feed your mind and your heart with good impression, such as good music that is from masters, specifically. Especially the European classical tradition has a lot, but you can find a lot of indigenous music, too, from Tibet which is very common and popular now, which you can listen to as well. Aztecs, Mayan, etc.
But the best way to feed your soul is in meditation [see the courses on Gnostic Meditation and Sufi Principles of Meditation]. Learn what you are feeding your consciousness with and reflect on your own psyche every day.
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