This group discusses the practical applications of the theosophical philosophy and the therapeutics of the wisdom of the ages.
The art of living study group intends to discuss the relevance and connection of theosophical ideas to the challenges and hurdles of daily life. This group will focus on the ethical issues, psychological challenges and artistic applications of theosophy to the daily round and the common task. While the other three groups freely move back and forth between the universal and the particular, the theoretical and the practical, this group will make an attempt to stay focused on the practical side of the art of living equation.
Weekly Theme for Contemplation: Deity — Transcendent and Immanent
January 15, 2017 at 6:37 pm #4481
Theme for Contemplation:Deity — Transcendent and Immanent
“Wisdom is attainable only through love of the gods and recognition of their immanence within the human temple.” — Aquarian Almanac
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Weekly Theme for Contemplation: Deity — Transcendent and Immanent
ModeratorTN January 15, 2017 at 6:58 pm #4484
January 14, 2017 Theme for Contemplation: Deity — Transcendent and Immanent
If you affirm only His transcendence, you restrict Him,
And if you affirm only His immanence, you limit Him.
If you maintain both aspects, you are exempt from error,
An Imam and a master in the spiritual sciences.
— IBN AL-‘ARABI
Truth has no special time of its own. Its hour is
now — always. — ALBERT SCHWEITZER
ModeratorTN January 15, 2017 at 6:58 pm #4485
January 15, 2017 Theme for Contemplation: Deity – Transcendent and Immanent
I sense one Flame, O Gurudeva. I see countless undetached
sparks shining in it. — OCCULT CATECHISM
Faith is the opening of all sides and every level of one’s life
to the divine inflow. — MARTIN LUTHER KING, JR.
Ramprakash ML January 17, 2017 at 7:11 am #4513
Neither Immanence of Deity nor its transcendence can be demonstrated empirically to us even by the Enlightened One who know it. They can only give us the philosophy of it, the science of it, demonstrate it to our higher reason, and thus help us to dimly perceive the reality of it with the Eye of Reason and developing Intuition.
We can only, at our state of development, have to depend upon i. the credibility and trustworthiness of the Teacher who is imparting the truth to us, and ii. use of higher reason.
Higher reason, because, reason based on mere empiricism, though important, is insufficient. we have to develop and use Reason based on fundamental universal principles truth of which are self-evident. Example : the three fundamental propositions of the SD.
Of course, we may be accused of being dogmatic for adopting this approach, and speaking if it, whereas it is not so.
No teacher, however high, can give us–the beginners, the mere tyros as we are– more than this.
Ramprakash ML January 20, 2017 at 9:42 am #4573
Implication of Deity being both transcendent and immanent is this–as it seems to me–SELF. My and your true Self, which is ONE and not many, and yet many, many in One and One in many.
“I am” in all, as all are in “me,” not the bodily me, feeling me, the mind me, the knowledge me, the bliss me, but the “me” the Self” of which all these different “me’s” are specific manifestations in different planes–each the cause of the next more concrete. Yet these are all One. These septenary gradations of the One Self without a second is the Real Man, a graduated Unity.
So are you and every other. In truth and reality there is only ONE.
“As the single Sun illuminates the world, so does one Spirit illuminates all bodies.” (Bhagavadgita).
Though we see separateness from our personality perspective–a key-hole perspective–if and as we rise to our higher consciousness we see more and more vividly the Oneness of one-self with All-self. That’s the reality, separateness is illusion of ignorant lower self.
Hence universal Brotherhood, hence the absolutely just Law of Universal Harmony, called Karma, the Law of our true Being. This entails responsibility, since my actions, even thoughts, have instantaneous effect for good or ill on all mankind and all other beings, (especially the lower kingdoms of nature which depend on me (on mankind) for their evolution to higher stages), productive of good and evil results, which will come back to me for adjustment of disturbed harmony.
All pain and sorrow are the result of thought and action on the notion and belief that we are different and separate from others (Avidya) hence selfish action.
The one and only way to happiness, world peace and true progress of all, is Altruism, devotion to the World Ideal of Universal Brotherhood. Each lives for the good of all and all for each, true brotherhood and sisterhood.
However far the ideal may seem to us, nevertheless that is the reality towards which we are progressing.
ModeratorTN January 17, 2017 at 1:17 am #4507
January 16, 2017 Theme for Contemplation: Deity – Transcendent and Immanent
All that which is found upon the earth has its
spiritual counterpart on High. — ZOHAR
As above so it is below, as in heaven so on earth. — H. P. BLAVATSKY
MARTIN LUTHER KING, Jr. DAY
ModeratorTN January 17, 2017 at 1:18 am #4508
January 17, 2016 Theme for Contemplation: Deity – Transcendent and Immanent
The bird is beyond seeking.
Yet it is most clearly visible.
The Formless is in the midst of forms.
I sing the glory of forms.
The doors of wisdom are never shut. — BENJAMIN FRANKLIN
Benjamin Franklin 1706
Anton Chekhov 1860
Edict of Toleration, France 1562
Odin TownleyParticipantOdin Townley January 17, 2017 at 5:49 pm #4515
“Maya or illusion is an element which enters into all finite things, for everything that exists has only a relative, not an absolute, reality, since the appearance which the hidden noumenon assumes for any observer depends upon his power of cognition.”
“Whatever plane our consciousness may be acting in, both we and the things belonging to that plane are, for the time being, our only realities. As we rise in the scale of development we perceive that during the stages through which we have passed we mistook shadows for realities, and the upward progress of the Ego is a series of progressive awakenings, each advance bringing with it the idea that now, at last, we have reached ‘reality;’ but only when we shall have reached the absolute Consciousness, and blended our own with it, shall we be free from the delusions produced by Maya.”
ModeratorTN January 18, 2017 at 10:11 pm #4550
January 18, 2017 Theme for Contemplation: Deity – Transcendent and Immanent
Man should be a paradise in motion. — CLAUDE de ST.-MARTIN
Unity can only be reached when each person, not thinking about unity, thinks
only about fulfilling the law of life. Only this supreme law of love, alike for all
people, unites humankind. — LEO TOLSTOY
ModeratorTN January 18, 2017 at 10:12 pm #4551
January 19, 2017 Theme for Contemplation: Deity- Transcendental and Immanent
Thou art One, and Thy Unity is never diminished, never extended,
and cannot be changed. — SOLOMON ben-GABIROL
We walk about, amid the destinies of our world existence, encompassed by dim
but ever-present Memories of a Destiny more vast — very distant in the bygone
time, and infinitely awful. — EDGAR ALLEN POE
Nancy CokerParticipantNancy Coker January 27, 2017 at 4:20 pm #4744
One implication of Deity being both immanent and transcendent might be that it reminds us to be more inclusive; when we’re too focused on the outer to look within; if we’re too dismissive of bodily needs and wants, to relax our judgments. When we’re too reverent about our ideals, to widen our attention to our actions and attitudes. As we learn to accommodate competing narratives we grow — not all polarities are problems to be solved.
Pierre WoutersModeratorPierre Wouters January 27, 2017 at 8:38 pm #4745
That’s a good point Nancy,
although the external world is an illusion, the internal – up to a point – is also an illusion. We are responsible for our vehicles – representing evolution (thus consciousness) on lower and material planes – and they need our due attention as well. As HPB points out, give to Caesar what is Caesar’s. The essence of our individual vehicles are monads evolving on their own plane to which we have a duty and that includes the lower kingdoms as well. However, as we ascend to a closer association with unity, our “outer” responsibilities will fall more and more into place.
PeterModeratorPeter January 27, 2017 at 9:34 pm #4747
“All polarities are not problems to be solved.”
That’s a very wise statement, Nancy. You may already know that the psychologist, Carl Jung, wrote about what he called the transcendent function with polarities in mind. He believed this arose as a mediating force within the individual when the individual is able to bear the tension of the opposites within the psyche. Such a union of the opposites can result in a new attitude towards oneself and life at large – a deeper connection between the rational aspects of the mind and deeper ‘non-rational’ aspects of our being.
Ramprakash ML January 28, 2017 at 4:09 pm #4749
“The senses, moving to their apppropriate objects, are producers of heat and cold, pleasure and pain, which come and go and are brief and changeable; these do thou endure, O Son of Bharata. For the wise man, whom these disturb not and to whom pleasure and pain are the same, is fitted for immortality.” (Bhagavadgita, chapter 2)
Endurance of pain and the unpleasant without complaint or horror, or shirking, not to be elated when pleasure comes, but maintain equal-mindedness is a practice we all can attempt.
It is one of the tests of our fitness for initiation into Mysteries.
- This reply was modified 9 months, 3 weeks ago by Ramprakash ML.
Ramprakash ML February 6, 2017 at 5:02 pm #4805
That’s right Pavel.
And, of equal mindedness :
“And he is esteemed among all who, whether amongst his friends and companions, in the midst of enemies or those who stand aloof or remain neutral, with those who love and those who hate, and in the company of sinners or the righteous, is of equal mind.” (vi / 4)
The more one realizes the unreality (in the sense of ever-changing, non-permanent, lacking inherent eternal subsistence) of the aggregate called personality, and the emptiness of the world personality conceives in its mind, the more one becomes indifferent to the illusion of personal self. Truly a Maya !
“Thou has to study the voidness of the seeming full and fullness of the seeming void.”
“Knowest thou of the Self the powers, O thou perceiver of external shadows ? If thou dost not then art thous lost.” (Voice of the Silence)
Pavel Axentiev February 7, 2017 at 8:22 am #4809
Basing all his doctrines upon the presence of the Supreme Mind, Plato tought that the nous, spirit, or rational soul of man, being “generated by the Divine Father,” possessed a nature kindred, or even homogeneous, with the Divinity, and was capable of beholding the eternal realities. This faculty of contemplating reality in a direct and immediate manner belongs to God alone; the aspiration for this knowledge constitutes what is really meant by philosophy – the love of wisdom. The love of truth is inherently the love of good; and so predominating over every desire of the soul, purifying it and assimilating it to the divine, thus governing every act of the individual, it raises man to a participation and communion with the Divinity, and restores him to the likeness of God. “This flight,” says Plato in the Theaetetus, “consists in becoming like God, and this assimilation is the becoming just and holy with wisdom.”
– Isis, Before The Veil, p. xiii
PeterModeratorPeter February 9, 2017 at 4:37 pm #4844
The term transcendent has more than one meaning and use.
Sometimes it is used to refer to that which is beyond the phenomenal world or beyond the realm of duality. Transcendental experience as, say, a form of mystic experience would then refer to an experience of the noumenal realm or non-duality, just as transcendental wisdom would be the direct cognition of noumenon or non-duality & so on. Plato’s Ideal world and the knowledge of it by the Soul might well fit in with this definition.
On the other hand, sometimes the term transcendent is used to refer to that which can never be experienced or known. This is how Kant, for example, used the term. This is how Theosophy refers to The Absolute, and further states that the Absolute can have no relationship to that which is finite or relative. This also raises the question as to whether something can be both transcendent (in this meaning of the term) and immanent.