Month: February 2017

Dynastic Egypt Mystery Schools-2.2

First, esoteric knowledge is explored using the full capacities of the human brain, both conscious and unconscious, analytical and intuitive. Rather than directing our attention and awareness to sensory information arising from our physical surroundings, we direct our attention inwardly so to explore and discover answers to questions such as these:

(1) What is the nature of the connection between my body-brain and my inner mind?

(2) What are the capabilities of the unconscious mind and how does it function?

(3) What are the capabilities of the conscious mind and how does it function?

(4) What is the proper method for utilizing these two minds in the esoteric exploration of our inner worlds?

(5) What are effective methods for teaching people how to communicate meaningfully with each other about these inner experiences?

(6) What does it mean when we experience interactions with personalized deities or powers?

(7) Are inner, esoteric experiences totally unique to each and every person (secondary to cultural biases and personal life-experiences) making comparisons impossible or are such experiences essentially universal phenomena (similar brain function) arising from observing and experiencing the actuality of a common nonphysical and spiritual universe?

Second, even though the areas of explorations differ between students of a mystery school and students of mundane science (one being introspective and subjective, the other extrospective and objective), the techniques applied for gathering, organizing and analyzing data, using this data for constructing models and hypotheses are quite similar. This concurrence should not come as a surprise, since the scientific method of asking and answering questions actually arose (and was taught and guarded) within the early Egyptian mystery schools, later being introduced into the mundane world during the birth of modern science in the Renaissance.

Another major difference between mundane scientific and esoteric studies concerns how each area deals with the subject of infinities, limitless quantities. As we saw before, modern science deals solely with components and component-interactions limited to existence within the boundaries of physical matter and energy. By physical matter and energy, I am referring only to those quantities which can be measured and quantified using instruments constructed out of the same physical components. Energies which are beyond the capabilities of measurement by any physical instrument, such as the energies of spirituality, are excluded by default.

Therefore, science operates within the world of finite objects, as is the case with most branches of mathematics, making its advances in technology and understanding by adding sequential rungs to a ladder leading high into the heavens. Each advance is simply another rung upon the ladder–a ladder not leading anywhere in particular.

Esotericism operates within the inner world of multilayered sets of infinite objects and concepts. For example, in kabbalah creation can be described by a tree composed of ten distinct levels or worlds interconnected in a specific manner. Each of these levels represent unique, spiritual forces or powers established by the Creator so to help the souls of mankind return from materiality to the Creator. Since each of these levels arise from and reflect a portion of the absolute infinity of the Creator, by necessity, each is infinite. Moreover, it is a property that movement between a lower infinity to a higher infinity is impossible using only the elements comprising the lower infinity. We saw this before when we discussed the fact that it is impossible for us to reach an infinity using discrete number theory. For example, we can never count to the end of all the integers existing on the number line since no matter how long we count, we can also count one more. Consequently, though our number continues to enlarge with each additional integer, we will never reach the end state, for the end state is not a number but a collection or set containing all integers. This infinity or infinite set was called aleph zero by the father of modern set theory, George Cantor. The numbers contained within this set are its elements, but no one element is equivalent to the set itself. Therefore, it is not quite correct to say that infinity is a real number which is so large that to matter what we do to it, its size does not change. Aleph zero is a whole onto itself which only appears limited on viewing it from our material perspective.

Dynastic Egypt Mystery Schools-2.1

Today, we are continuing our introductory discussion of the history, purpose and outer activities of the Egyptian mystery schools of antiquity. The first question to be answered today is:

Question 8: How do esoteric or mystery schools differ from modern scientific schools?

Answer 8: Mystery schools share both similarities and differences with modern schools of science. For example, worldly, mundane knowledge is concerned solely with finding suitable, objective explanations for the nature and operation of the physical, material universe and the creatures which have evolved within. The nature and extent of these investigations into the physical world of inanimate and animate entities are typified by the activities of both the hard (physics, chemistry and biology) and the soft sciences (anthropology, history, sociology, psychology and so on). In answering questions arising from our experiences relating to the physical universe and the laws underlying its deterministic operation (not withstanding chaos theory), we need to utilize only two qualities or properties inherent in our mechanically-evolved central nervous systems.

First, we direct our conscious attention and awareness onto events transpiring in our external surroundings. Second, we sample our surroundings employing one or more of our biologically-limited channels of physical sensation (sight, hearing, touch, taste or smell) using measuring devices and data transformation so to extend the bandwidth of our sensory apparatuses beyond our biological limitations (infrared telescopes, electron microscopes, medical scanning devices and so on). Third, we utilize analytical thought so to rearrange our sensory data, looking for possible, recurring patterns of activity or energy exchange suggestive of underlying physical (or psychological) laws or relations defining how objects interact within our observational system (using simplification and idealization). Fourth, we create testable hypotheses as to how these physical systems operate. Fifth, our hypotheses are refined through designing new experiments so to test the robustness of the model. Investigations of the external world using the rigors of scientific method–observation, analysis, modeling, prediction, testing and observation… are never complete nor absolutely definitive. Science is a finite process very similar in operation to the mathematical concepts of finding the limit of a particular function–a limit which can be specified, but never actually reached in practice.

The search for esoteric knowledge shares both similarities and differences to the search for worldly knowledge. Investigations entering into the sphere of esoteric knowledge are not concerned with uncovering the rules of how the physical universe and its creatures operate on a day-to-day mundane schedule, but in uncovering the structure and operation of the inner realms of the human mind (as to personal and universal purpose) commonly denoted as exploration within the nonphysical or spiritual existence.

Real Knowledge and Esoteric Schools-7

Question 7: Are the inner Teachings of today’s Great School the same ancient Teachings as those promulgated thousands of years ago?

Answer 7: The teaching methods of the exoteric branches of the Great School are always pragmatic in nature, being continuously readapted to the cultural and intellectual needs of the times. Therefore, the teachings being presented now cannot be expected to be exactly similar to those presented to past generations of seekers.

Often, both teachers and students populating existing exoteric schools attempt to restrict their studies to the theoretical and philosophical formulas and diagrams created hundreds and thousands of years previously by earlier seekers. While the information contained within such documents may remain completely accurate, modern understanding will fail since modern students lack sufficient familiarity with the ancient languages, idioms and metaphors assumed by the original seekers. The proper method for utilizing ancient formulas and diagrams begins by studying the basic elements, definitions and cultural underpinning of the language of the creators of these documents and images. Once a seeker has familiarized himself or herself with the language, symbols and important historical events surrounding the formulation of the ancient teaching aids, he or she can attempt to understand and apply the ancient knowledge.

Exoteric schools are more than repositories for sacred knowledge. These schools are important and necessary experimental crucibles for retesting and expanding the application of ancient formulas and doctrines by assuring that they are consistent with new scientific and mathematical discoveries. The Initiates are well aware of the fact that many of their previous discoveries and speculations arose from deep explorations into the inner mind, explorations beyond the processing abilities of the serial conscious awareness. They are also aware that secondary verification of some of their findings about the material world would have to await better measuring instruments and mathematics.

Also, the Order and School recognize that many occurrences now called psychic will someday be shown to arise out of the operation of physical matter. The Great School teaches that ‘knowledge to be useful, must remain fluid and expansive.’

However, this should not be taken to mean that the majority of the knowledge possessed by the Great School is incomplete. The basic principles operating within life were established thousands of years ago and continue unchanged to this day. The truths that have been taught for many thousands of years, especially the details and efforts which are necessary to take during one’s travels upon the ancient path for attaining conscious evolution and spiritual growth, remain just as vibrant and meaningful today as they were 40,000 years ago.

This brings us to the close of this month’s lesson. As always, my promise to each of you is: ‘give me an hour of your time each week and I promise you a fuller and more remarkable life.’ Next month we continue with this series, “Dynastic Egypt and Its Mystery Schools.”
Hopefully, you are beginning to see that attaining to the first stages of “making a soul” requires concerted efforts to hear, absorb and process knowledge about the Work. Being sloppy in speech and mind is unacceptable. For us to generate mutual and pragmatic understanding of the Work requires agreement in the proper employment of specific words and phrases. This is why it is important to listen or read new material with what the ancients called, “silent mind.”

If you listen as a mundane person does all day and all night that is with “monkey chatter mind,” you will make no progress in the Work; but will remain within you own biased and imaginary world of “waking sleep.” As the old Zen Master demonstrated to the student during a Tea Ceremony . . . your cup of knowledge, or mind, can only be filled with Work Ideas after emptying it of imaginary and unverified thoughts and feelings.
To aid you in such endeavors, you would be well advised to begin to construct a glossary of terms defining common words. By diligent studying of such, in the context of how they are utilized within the Work, you will can study and determine exactly how such definitions apply to the Work. We will send you written supplements that you can add to your glossary as the lessons progress.

Real Knowledge and Esoteric School-6

Question 6: How can I contact a representative or legate of the Great School?
Answer 6: The earthly work of the Great School has always been and remains focused upon locating those persons capable of hearing and awakening to the Voice of God Within. In modern terms, the goal of the Great School is providing Teachings and Encouragement useful for awakening the conscious awareness of a seeker sufficiently so he or she can begin to build a ladder and successfully cross the Great Abyss separating mechanical evolution and conscious evolution. No seeker nor tyro (candidate for initiation in an exoteric school under the sponsorship of the Great School) can initiate nor establish direct and personal contact with the Great School by his or her own efforts, regardless of sincerity. All preliminary contact must be made through the representatives of earthy, exoteric schools. The leaders of all legitimate and serious exoteric schools will have physical communication with an incarnating legate of the Great School, though who this person is may well be hidden to all those involved in the day-to-day operation of the preparatory school. It is particularly auspicious for the members of any school when they are interacting with a physically incarnating Initiate. When appropriate, communication between an Initiate of the Great School and those legitimately involved within a sponsored school or path, teacher or student, will occur through the higher cognitive and affective centers functioning through the human brain.

Direct contact between the Great School and an individual student is initiated by the Great School and only occurs after the student is properly prepared by active and serious involvement and participation in one or more of the exoteric or worldly schools currently extant. Direct contact is not physical, but only occurs through those centers of the human brain called ‘psychic’ by the commonality of humanity.

Question 7: Are the inner Teachings of today’s Great School the same ancient Teachings as those promulgated thousands of years ago?

 

Real Knowledge and Esoteric Schools-5

Question 4: How do I know I have made contact with a genuine Teacher? Are there levels of instruction or levels of Teachers?

Answer 4: Establishing contact with a genuine Teacher of an exoteric school sponsored by the Great School is dependent upon many factors. For example, the place of birth or upbringing may or may not be conducive to locating a compatible school; inappropriate spiritual training after birth may serve to neutralize the magnetic center carried over from a prior birth; contacting a false school may cause unnecessary hardships to occur and terminate further searches for enlightenment and so on. As the Russian Teacher Gurdjieff was fond of saying, “being lucky helps.”

Potential seekers should remember that the levels of the school they are attracted toward will depend upon their intentionality, sincerity and ability to apply effort toward embarking upon the path of conscious evolution. Early students should only expect to contact early schools; one must graduate primary school before attempting secondary school or university. However, I can assure you that if you study with full intent, further opportunities for study and service will ‘miraculously’ be presented at the proper time and place.

After contacting a school and applying for admittance, it is critical that you observe how the school and its teachers operate. Observe and ask questions continuously: Does the school seem to benefit only a few people? Are you promised wealth, happiness and success without the necessity for super-efforts on your part? Will moneys buy you health, happiness and enlightenment? Who are members of the school? Are they people you would expect to see in an exoteric school? Does the school desire to attract celebrities so to help the school attract media idolators? Does the school sell products carrying claims of having lifesaving properties, such as special waters, amulets and books?
The answers to these and similar questions will be appropriate whenever you are involved with a genuine exoteric school. Observe the Teacher, for the actions of the Teacher are the windows to the soul of the school.

Question 5: Does the Great School endorse any particular religion or social order?

Answer 5: The Initiates of the Great School and its exoteric offshoots do not today, nor have they ever did so in the past, endorsed any particular religion or social order. The Work of the Great School has nothing to do with the goals or activities of professed religions, except in so far as the teachings of such organizations aid in the general and personal welfare of mankind. No legitimate exoteric school has ever directly involved itself in the furtherance of any revolutionary political or religious matter. The earthly brotherhood of legitimate exoteric schools is not religious in nature nor intent and is not a cult. The only indirect involvements permitted by the Initiates of the Great School in the mundane affairs of the world are in situations of drastic proportions when it becomes necessary to act so to prevent the complete destruction of the human race through self-inflicted wars and persecutions.

Real Knowledge and Esoteric Schools-4

Question 2: Is there more than one esoteric school in our universe?

Answer 2: Contrary to the incomplete thoughts and selfish desires of many persons seeking aggrandizement, careful considerations upon the question lead to only one, simple and rationale answer–no. Each universe can contain no more than one Great Esoteric School; for it is a cosmic principle that all genuine spiritual paths eventually lead to the same realization concerning the necessity of careful harvesting of human potentialities for adequate completion of the universal process of natural and conscious evolution. Successful completion of this task is not a guarantee given by some eternal God to one man or group of men (as taught by many exoteric religious and metaphysical schools); if secured, mankind would have found the meaning and purpose he has so long sought so to justify his necessary and unnecessary suffering.

Moreover, since all conscious beings born into and awakening within our universe have trod the same path (though it might appear different to those who are blind), doing so through right choice and effort; there are no remaining differences of opinion nor directed effort. The Initiates of the Great School exist in a state where individuality functions as conjoined and unified “will and intention.”

Question 3: What is the connection between the Great School and persons and organizations claiming to be exoteric, or incarnate, representatives?

Answer 3: Generally, people claiming that their authority comes from either the Great School or they are Initiates are actually only attempts to propagate personal beliefs among the ignorant masses. Such ‘teachers’ are far removed from the Great School and its intentions for mankind. The best evidence as to the truth of the situation is that the organizations created by such persons work primarily for the material and psychological advantage of the founders rather than for the inner growth of the students. Oftentimes, you will hear stories from former students as to how their savings have been taken in the promise of obtaining sacred knowledge or better fortune. Associating with a worldly school is one place where the student must heed the timeless warning: Buyer Beware!

Sometimes, a self-proclaimed teacher was actually a student of a genuine school, but he or she left prematurely and so did not crystallize his or her connection (that is obtain permanence of the “I” so to survive mortal death) with the Great School. Usually the teachings presented by such schools are infected with wrong information and personal desires, serving as poor vehicles for the Great Light.

Occasionally, a teacher who obtained initiation in a past incarnation appears within the sphere of a legitimate exoteric school and is recognized as an Avatar or Corrector who has reincarnated so to inspire the search for light among those of the masses who have ‘but only a mite of dust blinding their vision’. If the teachers of the exoteric school are attuned sufficiently with the spirit of the Great School so to bring the reincarnating Master into their organization; then he or she will be able to be physically reintroduced to the current state of the world and its understanding of sacred knowledge. Even though, each Avatar or Corrector is born into physical existence with an unbroken attunement with the other Initiates of the Great School; his or her knowledge of the mundane world, science, philosophy and spirituality must be laboriously relearned by the new brain. Probably the best examples of this are found in the Tibetan Buddhist stories of the search for and training of a new lama who is the reincarnation of the previous spiritual head.

Real Knowledge and Esoteric Schools-3

As universal education became the norm within Europe and America, the demand for reading material increased and printing prospered. By the end of the 19th century, radio was made available, followed by television in 1950. The information explosion increased exponentially and education flourished. The introduction of personal computers in the 1980 and the growth of the world-wide-web has created immense data bases holding untold facts which can be used for educational purposes. At no prior time, have so many tools been available for influencing the development of mankind–for better or worse.

Therefore, for the next few weeks or months, we will be given the opportunity to study the history and Teachings of the Great School so to gather just a hint of understanding concerning the immensity of the Great Work of Conscious Humanity so to answer onto the inner calling of those seekers ready for contacting a worldly school suitable for guiding their first tenuous steps onto the Path of Conscious Evolution. To avoid unnecessary confusion, additional information, beyond that conveyed in our introduction to this series of lectures, will be through a question and answer format.

Question 1: When I look around, I observe a plethora of different religions, philosophies, metaphysical schools and persons claiming to be legitimate Teachers and Guides to ‘treading the Ancient and Sure Path’. Why?

Answer 1: There are a number of reasons why the mundane world contains so many different religions, teachings and philosophies–many subscribing too opposite viewpoints as to God and Creation. Firstly, archaeological and anthropological studies demonstrate that a religious belief systems, most likely animism, appeared within our Cro Magnon ancestors after migrating from Africa into the Middle East and Europe. Funerary goods, including flowers, food and weapons, have been found in conjunction with Cro Magnon (and maybe Neanderthal) burial sites dating to 50,000 years ago. Cave art suggestive of hunting and fertility rituals has been found in France and other areas originating from 12,000 to 34,000 years ago. In addition to artefactual evidence, all early cultures (including modern hunter-gatherers) seem to have had access to and utilized vast, complex and imaginative creation mythologies so to provide explanations for natural events, the existence of dreams, insanity, cultural goals, illness and the transience of human existence. These early attempts to understand life and human purposes demonstrate that deep within the human psyche is the need to ask questions and explore answers.

Secondly, many persons throughout the ages, still fettered to egotism and the false personality or self, have convinced themselves, without proper study nor contact with the Great School, that they are special agents from God–agents unto whom the ‘Final Truths’ have been revealed as to mankind’s place in the universe and his relation to the Godhead defined by the prophet involved. Many of the religions created by mankind have been born from such endeavors. Although such religions have little to do with conscious evolution, they often do contain tidbits of esoteric knowledge, usually added surreptitiously by students of legitimate exoteric schools so to help encourage the general followers to implement precepts for right living.

Thirdly, in ancient times, functioning exoteric schools, such as those of dynastic Egypt and India, sent forth into the world students having completed their training with instructions to establish new schools suitable for the cultural tastes and backgrounds of the indigenous persons. Usually, these students’ teachers are chosen from persons attending the mystery schools who originally came from the geocultural areas of interest.

Fourthly, in order to assure the survival of mankind from one age to another; and hence, sources from which to attract additional persons who can be readied to receive the Great Light, incarnating Initiates are actively involved in all aspects of mankind’s cultural existence. They often encourage the formation of new exoteric schools, mystical organizations and philosophical schools appealing to and attracting many potential students.