Written in Greek by Berosus, a priest of the temple of Belus, for Alexander the Great, from the astronomical and chronological records preserved by the priests of that temple, and covering a period of , years, it is now lost. In the first century B. Alexander Polyhistor made a series of extracts from it—also lost. Eusebius used these extracts in writing his Chronicon — A. And Socrates, a historian of the fifth century, and Syncellus, vice-patriarch of Constantinople eighth century , both denounce him as the most daring and desperate forger.
Is it likely, then, that he dealt more tenderly with the Chaldean records, which were already menacing the new religion, so rashly accepted? So that, with the exception of these more than doubtful fragments, the entire Chaldean sacred literature has disappeared from the eyes of the profane as completely as the lost Atlantis.
Why is this so? What do the scholars say of Buddhist literature? Have they got it in its completeness? Assuredly not. But who can be quite sure that they are likewise lost for Buddhists and Brahmins? One would imagine that, thanks to the numerous records of the Egyptian theogony and mysteries preserved in the classics, and in a number of ancient writers, the rites and dogmas of Pharaonic Egypt ought to be well understood at least; better, at any rate, than the too abstruse philosophies and Pantheism of India, of whose religion and language Europe had hardly any idea before the beginning of the present century.
Along the Nile and on the face of the whole country, there stand to this hour, exhumed yearly and daily, fresh relics which eloquently tell their own history. Still it is not so. II, p. On rolls of papyrus, which seem to defy the ravages of time, we have even fragments of what may be called the sacred books of the Egyptians; yet, though much has been deciphered in the ancient records of that mysterious race, the mainspring of the religion of Egypt and the original intention of its ceremonial worship are far from being fully disclosed to us.
Only a year or two since, one of that kind was discovered at Boulaq, Cairo. The mummy of what had been considered the wife of an unimportant Pharaoh, has turned out, thanks to an inscription found on an amulet hung on his neck, to be that of Sesostris—the greatest King of Egypt! The conflicting views on the subject of chronology, in the case of the Vedas, of the various eminent philologists and Orientalists, from Martin Haug down to Mr. For this is what all the Eastern Initiates and Pundits have been proclaiming to the world from time to time.
While a prominent Cinghalese priest assured the writer that it was well known that the most important Buddhist tracts belonging to the sacred canon were stored away in countries and places inaccessible to the European pundits, the late Swami Dayanand Sarasvati, the greatest Sanskritist of his day in India, assured some members of the Theosophical Society of the same fact with regard to ancient Brahmanical works.
His answer was suggestive. Moksh Mooller, as he pronounced the name, were a Brahmin, and came with me, I might take him to a gupta cave a secret crypt near Okhee Math, in the Himalayas, where he would soon find out that what crossed the Kalapani the black waters of the ocean from India to Europe were only the bits of rejected copies of some passages from our sacred books. This was at Meerut, in No doubt the mystification played, in the last century at Calcutta, by the Brahmins upon Colonel Wilford and Sir William Jones was a cruel one.
But it had been well deserved, and no one was more to be blamed. The former, on the testimony of Sir William Jones himself see Asiat. It made the Oriental scholars doubly cautious; but perchance it has also made some of them too shy, and caused, in its reaction, the pendulum of foregone conclusions to swing too much the other way. Wilford, do not at all interfere with the conclusions to which one who studies the Secret Doctrine must unavoidably come.
For, if the results show that neither the New nor even the Old Testament borrowed anything from the more ancient religion of the Brahmans and Buddhists, it does not follow that the Jews have not borrowed all they knew from the Chaldean records, the latter being mutilated later on by Eusebius. As to the Chaldeans, they assuredly got their primitive learning from the Brahmans, for Rawlinson shows an undeniably Vedic influence in the early mythology of Babylon; and Col.
Vans Kennedy has long since justly declared that Babylonia was, from her origin, the seat of Sanskrit and Brahman learning. But all such proofs must lose their value, in the presence of the latest theory worked out by Prof. What it is everyone knows. Wilford had heard from him about Adam and Abraham, Noah and his three sons, etc. Thus, while new discoveries are daily made of great arts and sciences having existed far back in the night of time, even the knowledge of writing is refused to some of the most ancient nations, and they are credited with barbarism instead of culture.
Yet the traces of an immense civilization, even in Central Asia, are still to be found. This civilization is undeniably prehistoric. And how can there be civilization without a literature, in some form, without annals or chronicles? Common sense alone ought to supplement the broken links in the history of departed nations. The Eastern and Central portions of those regions—the Nan-Schayn and the Altyne-taga—were once upon a time covered with cities that could well vie with Babylon. A whole geological period has swept over the land, since those cities breathed their last, as the mounds of shifting sand, and the sterile and now dead soil of the immense central plains of the basin of Tarim testify.
The borderlands alone are superficially known to the traveller. Within those table-lands of sand there is water, and fresh oases are found blooming there, wherein no European foot has ever yet ventured, or trodden the now treacherous soil. Among these verdant oases there are some which are entirely inaccessible even to the native profane traveller. Built deep in the bowels of the earth, the subterranean stores are secure; and as their entrances are concealed in such oases, there is little fear that anyone should discover them, even should several armies invade the sandy wastes where—.
There, some 3, human beings represent the relics of about a hundred extinct nations and races—the very names of which are now unknown to our ethnologists. An anthropologist would feel more than embarrassed to class, divide and subdivide them; the more so, as the respective descendants of all these antediluvian races and tribes known as little of their own forefathers themselves, as if they had fallen from the moon.
When questioned about their origin, they reply that they know not whence their fathers had come, but had heard that their first or earliest men were ruled by the great genii of these deserts. This may be put down to ignorance and superstition, yet in view of the teachings of the Secret Doctrine, the answer may be based upon primeval tradition. Alone, the tribe of Khoorassan claims to have come from what is now known as Afghanistan, long before the days of Alexander, and brings legendary lore to that effect as corroboration. The Russian traveller, Colonel now General Prjevalsky, found quite close to the oasis of Tchertchen, the ruins of two enormous cities, the oldest of which was, according to local tradition, ruined 3, years ago by a hero and giant; and the other by the Mongolians in the tenth century of our era.
The natives often find copper and gold coins, melted silver, ingots, diamonds, and turquoises, and what is the most remarkable—broken glass. The male mummies are all extremely tall powerfully built men with long waving hair. A vault was found with twelve dead men sitting in it. Another time, in a separate coffin, a young girl was discovered by us. Her eyes were closed with golden discs, and the jaws held firm by a golden circlet running from under the chin across the top of the head. To this, the famous traveller adds that all along their way on the river Tchertchen they heard legends about twenty-three towns buried ages ago by the shifting sands of the deserts.
The same tradition exists on the Lob-nor and in the oasis of Kerya. The traces of such civilization, and these and like traditions, give us the right to credit other legendary lore warranted by well educated and learned natives of India and Mongolia, when they speak of immense libraries reclaimed from the sand, together with various reliques of ancient MAGIC lore, which have all been safely stowed away.
To recapitulate. The Secret Doctrine was the universally diffused religion of the ancient and prehistoric world. Proofs of its diffusion, authentic records of its history, a complete chain of documents, showing its character and presence in every land, together with the teaching of all its great adepts, exist to this day in the secret crypts of libraries belonging to the Occult Fraternity. This statement is rendered more credible by a consideration of the following facts: the tradition of the thousands of ancient parchments saved when the Alexandrian library was destroyed; the thousands of Sanskrit works which disappeared in India in the reign of Akbar; the universal tradition in China and Japan that the true old texts with the commentaries, which alone make them comprehensible—amounting to many thousands of volumes—have long passed out of the reach of profane hands; the disappearance of the vast sacred and occult literature of Babylon; the loss of those keys which alone could solve the thousand riddles of the Egyptian hieroglyphic records; the tradition in India that the real secret commentaries which alone make the Veda intelligible, though no longer visible to profane eyes, still remain for the initiate, hidden in secret caves and crypts; and an identical belief among the Buddhists, with regard to their secret books.
There were portions of the Secret science that for incalculable ages had to remain concealed from the profane gaze. But this was because to impart to the unprepared multitude secrets of such tremendous importance, was equivalent to giving a child a lighted candle in a powder magazine. The answer to a question which has frequently arisen in the minds of students, when meeting with statements such as this, may be outlined here. Keely, of Philadelphia, but we cannot understand how any danger could arise from the revelation of such a purely philosophic doctrine, as, e.
So that any septenary division at once gives a clue to tremendous occult powers, the abuse of which would cause incalculable evil to humanity. A clue, which is, perhaps, no clue to the present generation—especially the Westerns—protected as they are by their very blindness and ignorant materialistic disbelief in the occult; but a clue which would, nevertheless, have been very real in the early centuries of the Christian era, to people fully convinced of the reality of occultism, and entering a cycle of degradation, which made them rife for abuse of occult powers and sorcery of the worst description.
The documents were concealed, it is true, but the knowledge itself and its actual existence had never been made a secret of by the Hierophants of the Temple, wherein M YSTERIES have ever been made a discipline and stimulus to virtue. This is very old news, and was repeatedly made known by the great adepts, from Pythagoras and Plato down to the Neoplatonists. It was the new religion of the Nazarenes that wrought a change for the worse—in the policy of centuries.
Moreover, there is a well-known fact, a very curious one, corroborated to the writer by a reverend gentleman attached for years to a Russian Embassy—namely, that there are several documents in the St. Imperial Libraries to show that, even so late as during the days when Freemasonry, and Secret Societies of Mystics flourished unimpeded in Russia, i. And more than one returned years later, with a rich store of such information as could never have been given him anywhere in Europe.
Several cases could be cited, and well-known names brought forward, but for the fact that such publicity might annoy the surviving relatives of the said late Initiates. Let any one look over the Annals and History of Freemasonry in the archives of the Russian metropolis, and he will assure himself of the fact stated. This is a corroboration of that which has been stated many times before, and, unfortunately, too indiscreetly. Instead of benefiting humanity, the virulent charges of deliberate invention and imposture with a purpose thrown at those who asserted but a truthful, if even a little known fact, have only generated bad Karma for the slanderers.
But now the mischief is done, and truth should no longer be denied, whatever the consequences. Is it a new religion, we are asked? By no means; it is not a religion, nor is its philosophy new; for, as already stated, it is as old as thinking man. Its tenets are not now published for the first time, but have been cautiously given out to, and taught by, more than one European Initiate—especially by the late Ragon. More than one great scholar has stated that there never was a religious founder, whether Aryan, Semitic or Turanian, who had invented a new religion, or revealed a new truth.
These founders were all transmitters, not original teachers. They were the authors of new forms and interpretations, while the truths upon which the latter were based were as old as mankind. Selecting one or more of those grand verities—actualities visible only to the eye of the real Sage and Seer—out of the many orally revealed to man in the beginning, preserved and perpetuated in the adyta of the temples through initiation, during the M YSTERIES and by personal transmission—they revealed these truths to the masses.
Thus every nation received in its turn some of the said truths, under the veil of its own local and special symbolism; which, as time went on, developed into a more or less philosophical cultus, a Pantheon in mythical disguise. Therefore is Confucius, a very ancient. I believe in the ancients and therefore I love them. The writer loves them too, and therefore believes in the ancients, and the modern heirs to their Wisdom. And believing in both, she now transmits that which she has received and learnt herself to all those who will accept it.
As to those who may reject her testimony,—i. Agreeably with the rules of critical scholarship, the Orientalist has to reject a priori whatever evidence he cannot fully verify for himself. And how can a Western scholar accept on hearsay that which he knows nothing about? Indeed, that which is given in these volumes is selected from oral, as much as from written teachings.
This first installment of the esoteric doctrines is based upon Stanzas, which are the records of a people unknown to ethnology; it is claimed that they are written in a tongue absent from the nomenclature of languages and dialects with which philology is acquainted; they are said to emanate from a source Occultism repudiated by science; and, finally, they are offered through an agency, incessantly discredited before the world by all those who hate unwelcome truths, or have some special hobby of their own to defend. Therefore, the rejection of these teachings may be expected, and must be accepted beforehand.
They will be derided and rejected a priori in this century; but only in this one. For in the twentieth century of our era scholars will begin to recognize that the Secret Doctrine has neither been invented nor exaggerated, but, on the contrary, simply outlined; and finally, that its teachings antedate the Vedas. Every century an attempt is being made to show the world that Occultism is no vain superstition. Once the door permitted to be kept a little ajar, it will be opened wider with every new century.
The times are ripe for a more serious knowledge than hitherto permitted, though still very limited, so far. About , Prof. The same will be said of the Secret Archaic Doctrine, when proofs are given of its undeniable existence and records. But it will take centuries before much more is given from it. We will give it but one turn, and thereby allow the profane one glimpse into the mystery.
Happy he, who understands the whole! In those days the writer hardly knew the language in which the work was written, and the disclosure of many things, freely spoken about now, was forbidden. In Century the Twentieth some disciple more informed, and far better fitted, may be sent by the Masters of Wisdom to give final and irrefutable proofs that there exists a Science called Gupta-Vidya; and that, like the once-mysterious sources of the Nile, the source of all religions and philosophies now known to the world has been for many ages forgotten and lost to men, but is at last found.
Such a work as this has to be introduced with no simple Preface, but with a volume rather; one that would give facts, not mere disquisitions, since the S ECRET D OCTRINE is not a treatise, or a series of vague theories, but contains all that can be given out to the world in this century.
It would be worse than useless to publish in these pages even those. Such statements as will now be made, have to be shown warranted by various authorities: those of ancient philosophers, classics and even certain learned Church Fathers, some of whom knew these doctrines because they had studied them, had seen and read works written upon them; and some of whom had even been personally initiated into the ancient Mysteries, during the performance of which the arcane doctrines were allegorically enacted.
The writer will have to give historical and trustworthy names, and to cite well-known authors, ancient and modern, of recognized ability, good judgment, and truthfulness, as also to name some of the famous proficients in the secret arts and science, along with the mysteries of the latter, as they are divulged, or, rather, partially presented before the public in their strange archaic form. How is this to be done? What is the best way for achieving such an object? To make our plan clearer, an illustration may be attempted.
When a tourist coming from a well-explored country, suddenly reaches the borderland of a terra incognita, hedged in, and shut out from view by a formidable barrier of impassable rocks, he may still refuse to acknowledge himself baffled in his exploratory plans. Ingress beyond is forbidden. But, if he cannot visit the mysterious region personally, he may still find a means of examining it from as short a distance as can be arrived at. Helped by his knowledge of landscapes left behind him, he can get a general and pretty correct idea of the transmural view, if he will only climb to the loftiest summit of the altitudes in front of him.
Once there, he can gaze at it, at his leisure, comparing that which he dimly perceives with that which he has just left below, now that he is, thanks to his efforts, beyond the line of the mists and the cloud-capped cliffs. Such a point of preliminary observation, for those who would like to get a more correct understanding of the mysteries of the pre-archaic periods given in the texts, cannot be offered to them in these two volumes. In that volume a brief recapitulation will be made of all the principal adepts known to history, and the downfall of the mysteries will be described; after which began the disappearance and final and systematic elimination from the memory of men of the real nature of initiation and the Sacred Science.
From that time its teachings became Occult, and Magic sailed but too often under the venerable but frequently misleading name of Hermetic philosophy. As real Occultism had been prevalent among the Mystics during the centuries that preceded our era, so Magic, or rather Sorcery, with its Occult Arts, followed the beginning of Christianity. However great and zealous the fanatical efforts, during those early centuries, to obliterate every trace of the mental and intellectual labour of the Pagans, it was a failure; but the same spirit of the dark demon of bigotry and intolerance has perverted systematically and ever since, every bright page written in the pre-Christian periods.
Even in her uncertain records, history has preserved enough of that which has survived to throw an impartial light upon the whole. Let, then, the reader tarry a little while with the writer, on the spot of observation selected. He is asked to give all his attention to that millennium which divided the pre-Christian and the post-Christian periods, by the year O NE of the Nativity. Truth can never be killed; hence the failure to sweep away entirely from the face of the earth every vestige of that ancient Wisdom, and to shackle and gag every witness who testified to it.
Let one only think of the thousands, and perhaps millions, of MSS. Both creeds have won their proselytes at the point of the sword; both have built their churches on heaven-kissing hecatombs of human victims. Over the gateway of Century I. Wise is he who holds to the golden mid-point, who believes in the eternal justice of things. On the day of resurrection both Muhammadans and Christians will see the vanity of their religious doctrines. Much of what was in I SIS could hardly be understood by theosophists in those days. The Secret Doctrine will now throw light on many a problem left unsolved in the first work, especially on the opening pages, which have never been understood.
Concerned simply with the philosophies within our historical times and the respective symbolism of the fallen nations, only a hurried glance could be thrown at the panorama of Occultism in the two volumes of Isis. In the present work, detailed Cosmogony and the evolution of the four races that preceded our Fifth race Humanity are given, and now two large volumes explain that which was stated on the first page of I SIS U NVEILED alone, and in a few allusions scattered hither and thither throughout that work.
Therefore, the present attempt to elucidate some mysteries of the Esoteric philosophy has, in truth, nothing to do with the earlier work. As an instance, the writer must be allowed to illustrate what is said. Volume I. It is the only original copy now in existence. The most ancient Hebrew document on occult learning—the Siphrah Dzeniouta—was compiled from it, and that at a time when the former was already considered in the light of a literary relic.
As it approaches nearer and nearer to our planet, the Emanation becomes more and more shadowy, until upon touching the ground it is as black as night. Tradition says, that it was taken down in Senzar, the secret sacerdotal tongue, from the words of the Divine Beings, who dictated it to the sons of Light, in Central Asia, at the very beginning of the 5th our race; for there was a time when its language the Sen-zar was known to the Initiates of every nation, when the forefathers of the Toltec understood it as easily as the inhabitants of the lost Atlantis, who inherited it, in their turn, from the sages of the 3rd Race, the Manushis, who learnt it direct from the Devas of the 2nd and 1st Races.
The illustration is symbolical, as every one can well understand, and covers the ground from the beginning. The old book, having described Cosmic Evolution and explained the origin of everything on earth, including physical man, after giving the true history of the races from the First down to the Fifth our race, goes no further. But there exists another book. Franck, quoting from the Babylonian Talmud, names two other thaumaturgists, Rabbis Chanina and Oshoi. In about nine years hence, the first cycle of the first five millenniums, that began with the great cycle of the Kali-Yuga, will end.
And then the last prophecy contained in that book the first volume of the prophetic record for the Black Age will be accomplished. We have not long to wait, and many of us will witness the Dawn of the New Cycle, at the end of which not a few accounts will be settled and squared between the races. Volume II. One more important point must be noticed, one that stands foremost in the series of proofs given of the existence of one primeval, universal Wisdom—at any rate for the Christian Kabalists and students. The teachings were, at least, partially known to several of the Fathers of the Church.
It is maintained, on purely historical grounds, that Origen, Synesius, and even Clemens Alexandrinus, had been themselves initiated into the mysteries before adding to the Neo-Platonism of the Alexandrian school, that of the Gnostics, under the Christian veil. More than this, some of the doctrines of the Secret schools—though by no means all—were preserved in the Vatican, and have since become part and parcel of the mysteries, in the shape of disfigured additions made to the original Christian programme by the Latin Church.
Such is the now materialised dogma of the Immaculate Conception. This accounts for the great persecutions set on foot by the Roman Catholic Church against Occultism, Masonry, and heterodox mysticism generally. The days of Constantine were the last turning-point in history, the period of the Supreme struggle that ended in the Western world throttling the old religions in favour of the new one, built on their bodies.
Every issue was blocked up, every record that hands could be laid upon, destroyed. Yet there remains enough, even among such mutilated records, to warrant us in saying that there is in them every possible evidence of the actual existence of a Parent Doctrine.
Fragments have survived geological and political cataclysms to tell the story; and every survival shows evidence that the now Secret Wisdom was once the. This accounts for the necessity under which the writer has laboured to be ever explaining the facts given from the hoariest Past by evidence gathered from the historical period.
No other means was at hand, at the risk even of being once more charged with a lack of method and system. The public must be made acquainted with the efforts of many World-adepts, of initiated poets, writers, and classics of every age, to preserve in the records of Humanity the Knowledge of the existence, at least, of such a philosophy, if not actually of its tenets. The Initiates of would indeed remain incomprehensible and ever a seemingly impossible myth, were not like Initiates shown to have lived in every other age of history. This could be done only by naming Chapter and Verse where may be found mention of these great characters, who were preceded and followed by a long and interminable line of other famous Antediluvian and Postdiluvian Masters in the arts.
Thus only could be shown, on semi-traditional and semi-historical authority, that knowledge of the Occult and the powers it confers on man, are not altogether fictions, but that they are as old as the world itself. Nor shall I condescend to notice those crack-brained slanderers—fortunately very few in number—who, hoping to attract public attention by throwing discredit on every writer whose name is better known than their own, foam and bark at their very shadows. You can only ignore them, and no more. We may close with a parting word concerning this Volume I.
Every reader will inevitably judge the statements made from the stand-point of his own knowledge, experience, and consciousness, based on what he has already learnt. This fact the writer is constantly obliged to bear in mind: hence, also the frequent references in this first Book to matters which, properly speaking, belong to a later part of the work, but which could not be passed by in silence, lest the reader should look down on this work as a fairy tale indeed—a fiction of some modern brain.
The errors of the day must be explained and swept away, yet it is more than probable—and in the present case it amounts to certitude—that once more the testimony of long ages and of history will fail to impress anyone but the very intuitional—which is equal to saying the very few.
But in this as in all like cases, the true and the faithful may console themselves by presenting the sceptical modern Sadducee with the mathematical proof and memorial of his obdurate obstinacy and bigotry. There still exists somewhere in the archives of the French Academy, the famous law of probabilities worked out by an algebraical process for the benefit of sceptics by certain mathematicians. It runs thus: If two persons give their evidence to. If three such evidences are joined together the certitude will become The Occultist may remain satisfied, and care for no more.
A N Archaic Manuscript — a collection of palm leaves made impermeable to water, fire, and air, by some specific unknown process — is before the writer's eye. On the first page is an immaculate white disk within a dull black ground. On the following page, the same disk, but with a central point. The first, the student knows to represent Kosmos in Eternity, before the re-awakening of still slumbering Energy, the emanation of the Word in later systems. The point in the hitherto immaculate Disk, Space and Eternity in Pralaya, denotes the dawn of differentiation.
The one circle is divine Unity, from which all proceeds, whither all returns. Its circumference — a forcibly limited symbol, in view of the limitation of the human mind — indicates the abstract, ever incognisable PRESENCE , and its plane, the Universal Soul, although the two are one. Only the face of the Disk being white and the ground all around black, shows clearly that its plane is the only knowledge, dim and hazy though it still is, that is attainable by man. The "Unconscious," according to von Hartmann, arrived at the vast creative, or rather Evolutionary Plan, "by a clairvoyant wisdom superior to all consciousness," which in the Vedantic language would mean absolute Wisdom.
Only those who realize how far Intuition soars above the tardy processes of ratiocinative thought can form the faintest conception of that absolute Wisdom which transcends the ideas of Time and Space. Mind, as we know it, is resolvable into states of consciousness, of varying duration, intensity, complexity, etc. Sensation, again, necessarily postulates limitation. The personal God of orthodox Theism perceives, thinks, and is affected by emotion; he repents and feels "fierce anger.
The conceptions of a Personal God as changeless and infinite are thus unpsychological and, what is worse, unphilosophical. It is the ONE LIFE , eternal, invisible, yet Omnipresent, without beginning or end, yet periodical in its regular manifestations, between which periods reigns the dark mystery of non-Being; unconscious, yet absolute Consciousness; unrealizable, yet the one self-existing reality; truly, "a chaos to the sense, a Kosmos to the reason. That which is motionless cannot be Divine. But then there is nothing in fact and reality absolutely motionless within the universal soul.
Almost five centuries B. Leucippus, the instructor of Democritus, maintained that Space was filled eternally with atoms actuated by a ceaseless motion, the latter generating in due course of time, when those atoms aggregated, rotatory motion, through mutual collisions producing lateral movements. Epicurus and Lucretius taught the same, only adding to the lateral motion of the atoms the idea of affinity — an occult teaching.
From the beginning of man's inheritance, from the first appearance of the architects of the globe he lives in, the unrevealed Deity was recognized and considered under its only philosophical aspect — universal motion, the thrill of the creative Breath in Nature. See Book II. It is only with reference to the intra-cosmic soul, the ideal Kosmos in the immutable Divine Thought, that we may say: "It never had a beginning nor will it have an end.
The latter is either "awake" or "asleep. Is it a substance? Then you are believers in a Personal God? This will be answered farther on, in the Addendum to this Book; meanwhile, we claim our rights of Conceptionalists as against Roscelini's materialistic views of Realism and Nominalism. See " Science and the Emotions. The former will allow of no other God than the personified secondary powers which have worked out the visible universe, and which became with them the anthropomorphic God of the Christians — the male Jehovah, roaring amid thunder and lightning.
If we take a one-sided view of the philosophy of the latter, our materialists may be right in their own way. The Buddhists maintained that there is no Creator, but an infinitude of creative powers, which collectively form the one eternal substance, the essence of which is inscrutable — hence not a subject for speculation for any true philosopher. Socrates invariably refused to argue upon the mystery of universal being, yet no one would ever have thought of charging him with atheism, except those who were bent upon his destruction.
Upon inaugurating an active period, says the Secret Doctrine, an expansion of this Divine essence from without inwardly and from within outwardly, occurs in obedience to eternal and immutable law, and the phenomenal or visible universe is the ultimate result of the long chain of cosmical forces thus progressively set in motion. In like manner, when the passive condition is resumed, a contraction of the Divine essence takes place, and the previous work of creation is gradually and progressively undone.
The visible universe becomes disintegrated, its material dispersed; and 'darkness' solitary and alone, broods once more over the face of the 'deep. This process has been going on from all eternity, and our present universe is but one of an infinite series, which had no beginning and will have no end.
This passage will be explained, as far as it is possible, in the present work. Though, as it now stands, it contains nothing new to the Orientalist, its esoteric interpretation may contain a good deal which has hitherto remained entirely unknown to the Western student. The first illustration being a plain disc the second one in the Archaic symbol shows , a disc with a point in it — the first differentiation in the periodical manifestations of the ever-eternal nature, sexless and infinite "Aditi in THAT " Rig Veda , the point in the disc, or potential Space within abstract Space. In its third stage the point is transformed into a diameter, thus It now symbolises a divine immaculate Mother-Nature within the all-embracing absolute Infinitude.
When the diameter line is crossed by a vertical one , it becomes the mundane cross. Humanity has reached its third root-race; it is the sign for the origin of human life to begin. When the circumference disappears and leaves only the it is a sign that the fall of man into matter is accomplished, and the FOURTH race begins. The Cross within a circle symbolises pure Pantheism; when the Cross was left uninscribed, it became phallic.
The Secret Doctrine
It had the same and yet other meanings as a TAU inscribed within a circle or as a "Thor's hammer," the Jaina cross, so-called, or simply Svastica within a circle. By the third symbol — the circle divided in two by the horizontal line of the diameter — the first manifestation of creative still passive, because feminine Nature was meant.
The first shadowy perception of man connected with procreation is feminine, because man knows his mother more than his father. Hence female deities were more sacred than the male. Nature is therefore feminine, and, to a degree, objective and tangible, and the spirit Principle which fructifies it is concealed.
It was the glyph of the third root-race to the day of its symbolical Fall — i. It is hoped that during the perusal of this work the erroneous ideas of the public in general with regard to Pantheism will be modified. It is wrong and unjust to regard the Buddhists and Advaitee Occultists as atheists. If not all of them philosophers, they are, at any rate, all logicians, their objections and arguments being based on strict reasoning. Indeed, if the Parabrahmam of the Hindus may be taken as a representative of the hidden and nameless deities of other nations, this absolute Principle will be found to be the prototype from which all the others were copied.
Parabrahm is not "God," because It is not a God. Parabrahm is simply, as a "Secondless Reality," the all-inclusive Kosmos — or, rather, the infinite Cosmic Space — in the highest spiritual sense, of course. Brahma neuter being the unchanging, pure, free, undecaying supreme Root, "the ONE true Existence, Paramarthika," and the absolute Chit and Chaitanya intelligence, consciousness cannot be a cognize, "for THAT can have no subject of cognition.
IT — is "the Spirit of the Fire," not fire itself; therefore, "the attributes of the latter, heat or flame, are not the attributes of the Spirit, but of that of which that Spirit is the unconscious cause. By certain Kabalistic transformations this name, androgynous in the first chapters of Genesis, becomes in its transformations entirely masculine, Cainite and phallic. The fact of choosing a deity among the pagan gods and making of it a special national God, to call upon it as the "One living God," the "God of Gods," and then proclaim this worship Monotheistic, does not change it into the ONE Principle whose "Unity admits not of multiplication, change, or form," especially in the case of a priapic deity, as Jehovah now demonstrated to be.
Therefore, when the Pantheists echo the Upanishads, which state, as in the Secret Doctrine, that "this" cannot create, they do not deny a Creator, or rather a collective aggregate of creators, but only refuse, very logically, to attribute "creation" and especially formation, something finite to an Infinite Principle. With them, Parabrahmam is a passive because an Absolute Cause, the unconditioned Mukta.
It is only limited Omniscience and Omnipotence that are refused to the latter, because these are still attributes as reflected in man's perceptions ; and because Parabrahm, being the "Supreme ALL ," the ever invisible spirit and Soul of Nature, changeless and eternal, can have no attributes; absoluteness very naturally precluding any idea of the finite or conditioned from being connected with it. And if the Vedantin postulates attributes as belonging simply to its emanation, calling it "Iswara plus Maya," and Avidya Agnosticism and Nescience rather than ignorance , it is difficult to find any Atheism in this conception.
Narayana moving on the abstract waters of Space, is transformed into the Waters of concrete substance moved by him, who now becomes the manifested WORD or Logos. Jacob; as also "The Aphorisms of S'andilya," translated by Cowell, p. For proof of this, see about Major Jacob's "Vedanta Sara. Yet, no philosopher among them will view this "death" in any other sense than as a temporary disappearance from the manifested plane of existence, or as a periodical rest. The Occultists are, therefore, at one with the Adwaita Vedantin philosophers as to the above tenet.
They say that Absolute Unity cannot pass to infinity; for infinity presupposes the limitless extension of something, and the duration of that "something"; and the One All is like Space — which is its only mental and physical representation on this Earth, or our plane of existence — neither an object of, nor a subject to, perception.
If one could suppose the Eternal Infinite All, the Omnipresent Unity, instead of being in Eternity, becoming through periodical manifestation a manifold Universe or a multiple personality, that Unity would cease to be one. Locke's idea that "pure Space is capable of neither resistance nor Motion" — is incorrect. For the root of one, Brahmam, or Brahm, is derived by some from the word Brih, "to grow" or "to expand" see Calcutta Review, vol.
It is not the One Unknown ever-present God in Nature, or Nature in abscondito, that is rejected, but the God of human dogma and his humanized "Word. Among many other works recently published, we would recommend one especially to students of theoretical Occultism who would not venture beyond the realm of our special human plane. It is full of esoteric dogmas and philosophy, the latter rather limited, in the concluding chapters, by what seems to be a spirit of conditioned positivism.
Nevertheless, what is said of Space as "the Unknown First Cause," merits quotation. And this incognisability has led to the error of supposing it to be a simple void, a mere receptive capacity. But, even viewed as an absolute void, space must be admitted to be either Self-existent, infinite, and eternal, or to have had a first cause outside, behind, and beyond itself. This is precisely what has been done by the believers in an anthropomorphic Creator, an extracosmic, instead of an intracosmic God.
Many — most of Mr. Pratt's subjects, we may say — are old Kabalistic ideas and theories which he presents in quite a new garb: "New Aspects" of the Occult in Nature, indeed. Still they are expressed very philosophically, and under many unusual aspects, in the work referred to. The oldest religions of the world — exoterically, for the esoteric root or foundation is one — are the Indian, the Mazdean, and the Egyptian.
Matter is dual in religious metaphysics, and septenary in esoteric teachings, like everything else in the universe.
As Mulaprakriti, it is undifferentiated and eternal; as Vyakta, it becomes differentiated and conditioned, according to Svetasvatara Upanishad , I. The author of the Four Lectures on the Bhagavad Gita, says, in speaking of Mulaprakriti: "From its the Logos' objective standpoint, Parabrahmam appears to it as Mulaprakriti. Of course this Mulaprakriti is material to it, as any material object is material to us.
Parabrahmam is an unconditioned and absolute reality, and Mulaprakriti is a sort of veil thrown over it. See Book III. Left in their symbolical disguise, they are a nursery tale, an ugly thorn in the side of science and logic, an evident effect of Karma. To have let them serve as a prologue to Christianity was a cruel revenge on the part of the Rabbis, who knew better what their Pentateuch meant. It was a silent protest against their spoliation, and the Jews have certainly now the better of their traditional persecutors. The above-named exoteric creeds will be explained in the light of the Universal doctrine as we proceed with it.
That which ever is is one, that which ever was is one, that which is ever being and becoming is also one: and this is Space. Light in darkness and darkness in light: the ' Breath which is eternal. The expression, therefore, "it proceeds from without inwardly, etc. Hence, whereas after an absolute pralaya, or when the pre-existing material consists but of ONE Element, and BREATH "is everywhere," the latter acts from without inwardly: after a minor pralaya, everything having remained in statu quo — in a refrigerated state, so to say, like the moon — at the first flutter of manvantara, the planet or planets begin their resurrection to life from within outwardly.
When it expands the mother diffuses and scatters; when it contracts, the mother draws back and ingathers. This produces the periods of Evolution and Dissolution, Manwantara and Pralaya. The Germ is invisible and fiery; the Root the plane of the circle is cool; but during Evolution and Manwantara her garment is cold and radiant. Hot Breath is the Father who devours the progeny of the many-faced Element heterogeneous ; and leaves the single-faced ones homogeneous. For clearer understanding on the part of the general reader, it must be stated that Occult Science recognizes Seven Cosmical Elements — four entirely physical, and the fifth Ether semi-material, as it will become visible in the air towards the end of our Fourth Round, to reign supreme over the others during the whole of the Fifth.
The remaining two are as yet absolutely beyond the range of human perception. These latter will, however, appear as presentments during the 6th and 7th Races of this Round, and will become known in the 6th and 7th Rounds respectively. Had Mr. Herbert Spencer read and studied ancient Hindu philosophers when he wrote a certain passage in his "First Principles" p. Apparently, the universally co-existent forces of attraction and repulsion which, as we have seen, necessitate rhythm in all minor changes throughout the Universe, also necessitate rhythm in the totality of its changes — produce now an immeasurable period during which the attracting forces predominating, cause universal concentration, and then an immeasurable period, during which the repulsive forces predominating, cause universal diffusion — alternate eras of Evolution and dissolution.
As Newton intuitionally says, "Nature is a perpetual circulatory worker, generating fluids out of solids, fixed things out of volatile, and volatile out of fixed, subtile out of gross, and gross out of subtile. Thus, perhaps, may all things be originated from Ether," Hypoth, The reader has to bear in mind that the Stanzas given treat only of the Cosmogony of our own planetary System and what is visible around it, after a Solar Pralaya. The secret teachings with regard to the Evolution of the Universal Kosmos cannot be given, since they could not be understood by the highest minds in this age, and there seem to be very few Initiates, even among the greatest, who are allowed to speculate upon this subject.
Moreover the Teachers say openly that not even the highest Dhyani-Chohans have ever penetrated the mysteries beyond those boundaries that separate the milliards of Solar systems from the "Central Sun," as it is called. Before the reader proceeds to the consideration of the Stanzas from the Book of Dzyan which form the basis of the present work, it is absolutely necessary that he should be made acquainted with the few fundamental conceptions which underlie and pervade the entire system of thought to which his attention is invited.
These basic ideas are few in number, and on their clear apprehension depends the understanding of all that follows; therefore no apology is required for asking the reader to make himself familiar with them first, before entering on the perusal of the work itself. In the former condition it is called the Sub-Root; and in conjunction with radiant heat, it recalls "dead worlds to life.
The Secret Doctrine establishes three fundamental propositions: —. It is beyond the range and reach of thought — in the words of Mandukya, "unthinkable and unspeakable. To render these ideas clearer to the general reader, let him set out with the postulate that there is one absolute Reality which antecedes all manifested, conditioned, being. This Infinite and Eternal Cause — dimly formulated in the "Unconscious" and "Unknowable" of current European philosophy — is the rootless root of "all that was, is, or ever shall be. It is "Be-ness" rather than Being in Sanskrit, Sat , and is beyond all thought or speculation.
This "Be-ness" is symbolised in the Secret Doctrine under two aspects. On the one hand, absolute abstract Space, representing bare subjectivity, the one thing which no human mind can either exclude from any conception, or conceive of by itself. On the other, absolute Abstract Motion representing Unconditioned Consciousness. Even our Western thinkers have shown that Consciousness is inconceivable to us apart from change, and motion best symbolises change, its essential characteristic. This latter aspect of the one Reality, is also symbolised by the term "The Great Breath," a symbol sufficiently graphic to need no further elucidation.
It may, however, assist the student if a few further explanations are given here. The "first" cannot be the absolute , for it is a manifestation. This advance on his part brings him very near to the esoteric and Vedantin tenet. But once that we pass in thought from this to us Absolute Negation, duality supervenes in the contrast of Spirit or consciousness and Matter, Subject and Object.
Spirit or Consciousness and Matter are, however, to be regarded, not as independent realities, but as the two facets or aspects of the Absolute Parabrahm , which constitute the basis of conditioned Being whether subjective or objective. Considering this metaphysical triad as the Root from which proceeds all manifestation, the great Breath assumes the character of precosmic Ideation.
It is the fons et origo of force and of all individual consciousness, and supplies the guiding intelligence in the vast scheme of cosmic Evolution. On the other hand, precosmic root-substance Mulaprakriti is that aspect of the Absolute which underlies all the objective planes of Nature.
Just as pre-Cosmic Ideation is the root of all individual consciousness, so pre-Cosmic Substance is the substratum of matter in the various grades of its differentiation. Hence it will be apparent that the contrast of these two aspects of the Absolute is essential to the existence of the "Manifested Universe. Again, apart from Cosmic Ideation, Cosmic Substance would remain an empty abstraction, and no emergence of consciousness could ensue.
The "Manifested Universe," therefore, is pervaded by duality, which is, as it were, the very essence of its EX -istence as "manifestation. But just as the opposite poles of subject and object, spirit and matter, are but aspects of the One Unity in which they are synthesized, so, in the manifested Universe, there is "that" which links spirit to matter, subject to object. This something, at present unknown to Western speculation, is called by the occultists Fohat.
It is the "bridge" by which the "Ideas" existing in the "Divine Thought" are impressed on Cosmic substance as the "laws of Nature.
The Project Gutenberg EBook of The Secret Doctrine, Vol. 1 of 4 by Helena Petrovna Blavatsky
Thus from Spirit, or Cosmic Ideation, comes our consciousness; from Cosmic Substance the several vehicles in which that consciousness is individualised and attains to self — or reflective — consciousness; while Fohat, in its various manifestations, is the mysterious link between Mind and Matter, the animating principle electrifying every atom into life. The first manifestation, the impersonal, and, in philosophy, unmanifested Logos, the precursor of the "manifested.
The Eternity of the Universe in toto as a boundless plane; periodically "the playground of numberless Universes incessantly manifesting and disappearing," called "the manifesting stars," and the "sparks of Eternity. It is the only immortal and eternal principle in us, being an indivisible part of the integral whole — the Universal Spirit, from which it emanates, and into which it is absorbed at the end of the cycle. When it is said to emanate from the one spirit, an awkward and incorrect expression has to be used, for lack of appropriate words in English.
Blavatsky presented some of the findings of the Occult Science, contrasting them with those of the science of her time. She questioned some fundamental scientific ideas such as the indivisibility of the atom, the understanding of gravity, the theories of the formation of the solar system, etc. As I have shown in a previous article The Theosophist , Nov. Thus, the SD showed how spirituality can be scientific, and how science can potentially embrace the non-physical. Today, the idea of a connection between science and spirituality, although still not prevalent, is accepted by many, and is a field in steady development.
In its attempt to understand life and the universe humanity has developed three approaches——the religious, the philosophical, and the scientific. In the distant past, the three were not sharply separated, but with the passing of time each became more and more specialized, progressively growing apart. Eventually, they became hostile toward one another. As a result of this, human understanding became fragmented and generated flawed views of life, either based on irrational faith, blind materialism, or sceptic intellectualism.
This synthetic view, however, cannot be attained through the mutually exclusive approaches of modern science, religion, and philosophy. Their common ground can be perceived only through a knowledge of the occult science, the wisdom-religion, and the esoteric philosophy; the three aspects of that single world view presented by Mme.
Blavatsky in the SD. This holistic system is not a syncretism; a mere agglomeration of different points of view, with a little religion here, some philosophy there, and a few scientific facts added. Just as water is not simply a mix of the gases oxygen and hydrogen, but a new compound with its own characteristics, this system is a new and radically different understanding.
Many of the teachings presented in the SD are of a spiritual nature; dealing with subjects that are the province of religion. However, they are not religious teachings, as we understand the term. To begin with, they are not offered as a revelation to be unquestioningly accepted. Even though these teachings relate to things that are beyond the normal perceptions of most people, they are meant to help the student develop a perception of truth of his own. As in philosophy, they must be cogent. But even an intellectual understanding of the teachings is not sufficient. As in science, the student must strive to verify them by his own experience, as far as it is possible for him at the present stage.
Although these teachings offer a particular world view and ethics, and expects the student to be able to approach them rationally; they do not constitute a philosophy in the modern conception of the word. Modern philosophy is the outcome of the intellectual and rational powers of the philosopher, who thinks out a certain explanation for some fundamental questions of life. The SD is not the outcome of Mme.
Scientific data is the outcome of the observation of a group of people the scientists especially trained for the task. The knowledge most people have about science is not direct, but rests on the authority of scientists. If a person wants to verify any scientific assertion he can undergo the proper training and develop the necessary knowledge and skills to become a scientist.
However, the methods of research of the occult science are not based on the use of physical instruments. They employ spiritual senses which, being still dormant in most people, makes this training far more difficult than the one needed to become a regular scientist. And here is where modern science differs from its occult counterpart. The world of ideas has changed since the time the SD was first published, and in many cases this change was in the direction pointed out by Mme.
This book can justly be regarded as a pioneer in several fields. But now the question may be asked, has the SD already accomplished its goals? What is its value today? In studying this book, it becomes clear that many of the references to the science of the time, as well as to thinkers, psychologists, and spiritualists that were relevant in the 19th century are now dated. Even the understanding of some religions and philosophies little known at the time has changed, rendering some portions of the SD irrelevant.
All this belongs to the transient aspect of the SD , the one that was produced specifically for its contemporary reader, but this book has also an enduring value, centred on the presentation of the Esoteric Philosophy. Here again, we must take into account that in the last years a number of Theosophical books have appeared offering a presentation of the main teachings of the Esoteric Philosophy.
Is it still valuable other than as a reference book? In examining the SD in relation to these aims, many agree that this is not the best Theosophical book for the beginner to try to acquire an ordered and coherent new perspective of life. Actually, HPB herself is reported to have said:. If one imagines that one is going to get a satisfactory picture of the constitution of the Universe from the SD one will get only confusion from its study. To be sure, once the student has a fairly good understanding of Theosophy he can find in the SD gems that will contribute to this understanding.
However, the Theosophical literature today offers works better fitted to provide a systematic and comprehensive exposition of the Theosophical world view. Something similar can be said of the second aim of study.
- “The Secret Doctrine” – Past and Future?
- Hamburger e miracoli: Sulle rive di Shell Beach (Italian Edition);
- Poverty Reduction and Changing Policy Regimes in Botswana (Developmental Pathways to Poverty Reduction).
- Isis Unveiled.
- Paroles déducateurs de prévention spécialisée (Educateurs et Préventions) (French Edition).
- Innovation: How Innovators Think, Act and Change Our World;
More direct and practical teachings as to how to tread the spiritual path can be found in other books and articles within the Theosophical tradition. Here again, the author of the SD wrote The Voice of the Silence , which is an important contribution in this field. It is when we come to the third aim listed above, that of study as a form of yoga, that the SD still stands unparalleled within the Theosophical literature.
Most books are written in a way that appeal to the intellect of the student—their main purpose being that of conveying certain information.