THE ETHERIC BODY
The Aquarian Age has arrived. Man gains the experience of etheric existence. Consequently he also gains the etheric body. It unveils the truth of deathlessness - meaning immortality. The Masters of Wisdom inaugurated the Yoga relating to it a hundred years ago through H.P.B. and A.A.B.
Master CVV, the Master of Nilgiri, gave out the technique relating to the Yoga of Immortality, which is part of the Ancient Wisdom.
This book contains the practical steps towards attaining immortality. The training involves working with Saturn initially and Venus subsequently.
Sri K. Parvathi Kumar, a disciple in the Yoga path of Master CVV gave out the technique to the seekers of truth.
The purpose of building the etheric body is to function effectively as a disciple. The purpose of discipleship is in turn accomplished when the etheric body is built. A well built etheric body is the means for translation of intangible spiritual Principles into tangible acts of goodwill. It enables the manifestation of the Divine Plan. It elevates the individual to the state of immortality. One overcomes death and continues with his identity as a soul fulfilling the plan of the Higher ones. Such is the state of the Masters of Wisdom.
The spiritual practice belongs to the soul and it continues through series of births and deaths. Each incarnation carries with it the programme of the soul as also the programme of the personality. The programme of the personality commences and concludes in each incarnations, to recommence in the next birth on the basis of the individual karma. Such individual karma is carried until the doctrine of action (Karma Yoga) is practices and realized. As long as the karma conditioning continues, every death washes off one's memories.
The programme of the soul too continues through spiritual practices during all these series of births and deaths as seed tendencies. There is a hidden continuity of its work as part of one's consciousness.
The spiritual part of the one has one name through all incarnations as the code-name. Through this code-name one is known and is identified. The personality part of the one also is given a name for every incarnation, but it keeps changing from incarnation to incarnation.
Linking up the two layers of consciousness enables man to realize his original identity and his purpose in life. Such link-up is possible when the etheric body is built. Strengthened, vitalized and made magnetic. It is a process of initiation, meaning inner work. Such inner work is possible only for those who have fairly accomplished a natural and normal temperament in the outer world. One the etheric body is built up to the required vibration, man becomes semi-divine and semi-human. It becomes the divine-human as contrary to the human-animal. He becomes a bridge between the divine and the material worlds - a messenger of God upon Earth as per the scriptures.
WHAT IS ETHERIC BODY
The etheric body is the body of light formed of the four higher sub - planes (of the seven sub-planes) of the physical plane matter. The physical body of the human being is a composite body formed of two parts, the dense physical and the subtle physical. The dense physical if formed of the matter of the lowest three sub-planes of the physical plane. The etheric part is formed of the four higher sub-planes which are subtle in matter, enabling radiation of light. The etheric part of the human body, being formed of subtle, transparent matter, enables transmission of spiritual energies viz. Light, Love and Will.
The dense physical body corresponds to the planet Earth. The etheric body corresponds to the planet Venus. The esoteric astrology tells us that Venus is the higher counterpart (elder sister) to our Earth. It also tells us that Venus is the guardian angel of our Earth. In the involutionary process, the descent of the physical man as we now know, is from the etheric state. Hence, the etheric form of the human being forms the basis for the dense physical human form. In the evolutionary process (the spiritual pursuit) the human being once again gains the etheric state. The Aquarian Age is suitable for gaining such subtle state of existence.
All the spiritual practice is aimed at shifting the emphasis from the gross to the subtle, from the dense physical to the subtle physical, form the darkness to the light, from ignorance to knowledge and from a gross and material-conditioned existence to a subtle, spiritual and liberated existence.
CHIEF FUNCTION OF THE ETHERIC BODY
The etheric body functions as a link between the emotional body and the physical body on one hand, and as a link between the vital body and the physical body on the other hand.
Thus the etheric body is the transmitter of life force through the vital body, or of emotions through the emotional body. When the etheric transmits the latter, you have the animal-man at rage. When it transmits the former, you have the complete human, as also the divine-human, at work.
THE IMMEDIATE WORK
The immediate task of the disciple is therefore, to build the etheric body, strengthen it, vitalise it and magnetise it to enable it to transmit the forces of life and light and simultaneously de link it from the emotional body. Such should be the understanding of all Yoga practice. It is thus a two-pronged attack to achieve the desired state. One is to work with the elimination of selfish / impure mental, emotional and physical activity. The other is to build up the etheric body through specific practices. One related to the work in the objectivity - the outer work. The other relates to the subjectivity - the inner work. Both should be picked up and worked out simultaneously, for the entanglement with the outer world disables practising in the inner world.
WORK - OBJECTIVE
(Square up the Square)
It involves purification of the three lower sub-planes of the physical plane, consisting of the physical, emotional and the lower mental.
The purification of the physical body involves cleanliness of the surroundings, cleanliness in all physical aspects, pure food, timely sleep, adequate exposure to sunlight, fresh air and water.
The purification of the emotional body involves constant watching of desires, motives, wishes, aversions, anger, hatred, possessiveness, fear and other negative forces at play. These emotional can be overcome by setting oneself upon a noble aspiration. An ideal need to be set in terms of service to the surrounding life and keep working on it incessantly to focus all emotion and burn it in the fire of aspiration. Service as part of discipleship is thus an inevitable programme in the evolutionary path.
"A man in fog is a blind traveller", says Master D.K., A man in confused thought is a man in fog. Clear thinking through constant introspection leads to visualization. A conscious effort should be made to build thoughts of goodwill, strengthen such thought forms and gradually manifest them for the welfare of the beings. Self-analysis, self-introspection, self-searching and self-review of daily life, are important tools in this context.
In fact, all religious preach these principle (and many more) for harmonious outer living. It is this exoteric work that precedes all real occult work.
Karma means action. Karma is divine. The creational process is the divine karma. The law relating to karma is that "all action shall be welfare-oriented". One working for the welfare of the other. It is summed as "not doing unto others what one expects not be done by others unto oneself". Goodwill is the intended basis of all action (karma). In creation, karma is a sequential action. But when the basis of goodwill or welfare is replaces by selfishness, the sequential actions become consequential, giving birth to the conditioning of the beings. The karma that conditions one through selfishness is the binding karma called "individual karma". The selfish one weaves his own sheet of cause and effect within the creational wheel. He becomes accountable to his own actions. His selfish actions give birth to selfish thoughts and the selfish thoughts push him to selfish actions. He thus weaves around him a web of karma and gets imprisoned therein.
In Nature, if we observe, there is a mutuality - one working for the other. The mineral works for the plant, the plant works for the animal, the human and animal work for the plant and the human and the Devas work for all the four kingdoms. The human too need to work thus. "Work as an offering is divine karma and work for oneself is individual karma". Says the Bhagavad Gita.
Work as an offering involves a spirit of sacrifice. Doing for oneself has the motive in the doer, and therefore turns back to him in the shape of consequences. "Be sequential but not consequential", says Master E.K.
THE TRIPLE ASPECT OF KARMA
Out of ignorance, man does act in selfishness and binds himself with such actions. The tendency to be selfish exists as seeds in him. They sprout in every appropriate situation, in spite of his own theoretical knowledge of their ill-effect. This is called "Sanchita Karma", the karma that distorts the present thought and action.
Conditioning thus, the individual is driven to selfish actions binding him further through the present. That is called "Prarabdha Karma". The present lays the foundation for the future, just as the past laid the foundations for the present. Man is bound by his own nature, even into the future. That is called "Agami Karma". Driven by fate, man moves cyclically through births and deaths for series of incarnations, moved by the cause and effect of individual karma.
The doctrine of discipleship therefore suggests exercise of good will to break this imprisoning wheel of individual karma. When man realizes the futility of selfish-seeking, he starts learning and working for others. In the beginning "working for others" is only a good intention. One will not be able to manifest his intention without obstacles, for his own settled, past tendencies distort his intentions. It is in this context exercise of strong will need to be inculcated. Association with men of goodwill becomes necessary to gain the necessary strength.
As one learns to hold on to good will in thought, he ceased to create future karma through the present action and thus provides for a free tomorrow. Nevertheless, past karma remains the surfaces in the present.
The disciple is expected to be tolerant to meet the adverse situations and all injustice done to him, with the conscious understanding that his own past is turning back upon him and that he needs to dispassionately handle it - lest it could create consequences. It is in this stage we see Initiates being dispassionate to personal injustice done to them.
All obligatory karma is under stood at this stage as the debt arising out of the past karma. The obligations to the family, the spouse and the society, are nothing but past karma surfacing and seeking discharge. "A disciple should walk out of obligatory karma through proper discharge", says Master D.K. All action therefore becomes voluntary, playful and bestows bliss of existence on the doer.
"There is nothing that I have to do in all the three worlds (…) Yet I engage Myself in doing My lot", says Lord Krishna (Bhagavad Gita III, 22).
THE SQUARE - SQUARED UP
"One needs to square up the four to walk into the temple of the Triangle", says Pythagoras. The four or the square in the esoteric sense, refers to the objectivity. Squaring up the objectivity requires responsible attendance to the objective world through the four aspects, namely purification of the three bodies and neutralization of the individual karma. One should remember that this is a gradual work to be accomplished, but not an overnight turnout. According to Master Morya, it extends to 12 incarnations for a sincere aspirant. It was so even for Master D.K.! The last three of the twelve incarnations worked out speedier than the first three incarnations - for in three incarnations the seeker in into the direct service of the Plan. "make haste slowly", is the relevant mantra here, given by Master D.K.
As the objective life grows less and less obligatory and more and more voluntary, proportionate eligibility is gained for subjective practice and subjective growth. A man bound head to foot by the objective world cannot even dream of entering into the subtle subjective world. How can the one that has not learnt to handle the gross, think of handling the subtle forces? Hence, building the etheric body demand discipline (as summarized above) relating to objectivity. But one does not abstain to work with subjectivity until the objective obligation is fully cleared. As much as one gains release form the objectivity, so much one is eligible for subjective pursuit. The subjective work and objective work and complementary.
The subjective work chiefly involves working with colour, sound and respiration. The three form the golden triangle of the Temple work to be carried within. It is simply meditational work to be carried out silently in secrecy and in utter simplicity. Remember the triple 'S' (Secrecy, Silence, Simplicity) while we are in the Temple work.
To supply the deficiency to fill the needed gap, and to manipulate the matter to build the etheric body, normalizaion of one's own respiration is the first step. We do not breath as we should. Affected by emotions and perverted intellect, we reduce our breathing to sub normalcy. The free flowing currents or respiration are frequently attacked by the emotional onslaughts. The rhythm is distributed. Consequently the flow of Prana (the life force is distorted. This is the cause of disease, decay and death.
We should therefore attempt to normalize our breathing. This involves consciously for about 24 minutes during the sunrise time and gain for the same duration during the sunset time. It has a surprisingly healthy effect on bringing in life force via the vital body, to strengthen the etheric body which would gradually develop resistance to the attacks of the emotional body.
We let out breathing be conscious, slow, soft, deep and uniform. Conscious breathing helps alignment of mind with respiration. It with objectivity and link with the source of respiration, which is located in the heart centre. The other four qualities of breathing make respiration complete and the practitioner gradually respires less number of times per minute, calming down the whole system within. In 24 minutes one would respire 27 times. Such effort to respire, when done daily twice at the appointed hours, helps to build a strong, resistant, vibrant and vitalized etheric web.
The agitated mind agitates the respiration and latter disturbs the ever-flowing life currents. Hence, neutraization of respiration through the above technique helps substantially in the process of building the etheric body. When mind and respiration are consciously united, man, in the advanced stages of the practice, realizes that they are the two outflowing channels of consciousness, which he is in reality. He finds that he himself is bifurcated to function as thread of awareness and also as thread of life, and the meeting point for the two is the heart centre. He further realizes that the two currents are complementary to each other when aligned, and are detrimental to each other when not aligned.
Having practised thus, we allow time to bring about the remainder of the work. The practice of breathing as stated above would also train the mind to reach the cave of the heart on a daily basis. "To turn within" is gained through regular practice, which would, in later advanced stages, help the student to reach the higher (subtler) realms of his own being.
SOUND - ITS USE
The worlds are effect of sound. Sound is the creating intermediary. It is the agent of the great Entity as the sacred word. In relation to the lower vehicles, sound manifests as electricity, prana (life force) and the magnetic fluid.
Invocation of the sacred work OM daily enables the attraction of finer matter and the dispelling of coarser matter to one's body. Invocation of the sacred word also repudiated thoughts of a lower vibration and attracts thought forms of a finer nature. It causes the alignment of the lower bodies with the higher (subtler) ones. Utter the sacred word either 3, 5 or 7 times, having done the breathing as explained earlier. Locate the source of emergence of the sound in the heart. The first step of respiration already leads one's mind upto the heart centre. The utterance of the sacred word brings into manifestation a fresh dosage of electrical energy of the spirit, magnetic fluid of the soul and prana itself. Engage in the muse of the heart beat which conducts itself as resonance of the unuttered sound - Anahata. The music of the sound emerging from the pulsation of the heart is a double sound. This music of the double sound is the heart principle that conducts the heartbeat. It is called the double winged swan Hamsa, conduction the double sound SOHAM.
The heart principle is called Hridaam is Sanskrit. Hridyam means "Here I Am". The student locates himself thus in the heart principle and gradually realizes himself as the pulsating principle. He locates himself in the heart principle and listens to the music of the soul, "SOHAM". Soham is a double sound - Saha + Aham, meaning "That I Am". Regular contemplation upon the heart principle for a duration of 24 minutes is the second step, while conscious breathing for 24 minutes to reach the heart region is the first step. The student at this stage is said to have entered into "the cave of the heart" to listen to and engross in the "the Music of the Soul". He locates himself and is at the portal to gain his identity.
As the student stabilizes himself in the cave of the heart, he is advised to visulize his won image - an etheric one, about the size of one's won thumb, in a white/violet electric hew. Proceed to visualize with due and elaborate care and build the etheric form with minute care, with the help on one's own focused imagination and loving effort. Work daily on the etheric figure of the size of the thumb (some scriptures say that the figure's size is that of one's own index finger) to picture it vividly towards the close of the meditation. This is the third and final step of the meditation, which is also expected to last for the third set of 24 minutes. In all, the total inner work or meditational work is expected to last 72 minutes.
When worked daily as stated above, the etheric figure becomes real and there comes a day where the student realizes that the figure built is not the puppet he imagined but himself verily as distinct from his dense physical body! He realizes himself to be in etheric form while he find his dense physical body as a gross envelope around him. He stand out and sees his physical sheath objectively when he becomes conscious of his etheric form. Lo! He finds his gross physical sheath. It is a magnified dense replica of his micro-etheric form in all respects! He further finds that his etheric (light) forms moves, so dies the dense physical. The emphasis then gets shifted to the etheric portion of his body from the dense physical portion. The work is thus fulfilled.
Does it look fictional? What did happen? Identifying himself with the etheric figure within the heart, making a conscious channel between the heart and the head centre (due to the vivification in building the etheric figure) he links up the head and the heart centre. By doing so he purifies the corresponding part of the physical brain. In turn, the brain responds to the higher vibration and records or registers the vibration.
This is the work of Venus as principle. Venus governs the colour sense in man. Colour is the base form in the etheric plane (while sound is the bas of the higher etheric plane). The whole world itself is conception of the Logos that produces colour and sound vibrations before the origin of light. "Colour brings light down to objectivity". "Venus thus steals light from heavens to Earth" (Master E.K., "Spiritual Astrology").
When meditation upon one's own gross form or on any form of beauty, man is raised from the gross form to the mental form. The mental form is only the etheric part of the gross physical form. AT that meditative state, the gross physical form drops off and the mental form remains within. The gross physical form is absent and consequently man is freed from the bondage of gross matter. Man in the beginning requires gross moulds (forms) of beauty to contemplate. He slowly conceives the beauty of the form, eliminating the substance of the out mould. He thus raises himself to the etheric levels,, The images of Gods serve this purpose initially. The temple worships have come up on this basis to elevate man from the initial stages of matter.
One the mental forms are set, Venus accelerates the realization at higher levels. Remember that the creation is from the thought form to the dense matter to the subtler matter. This is the sacred mission of Venus in the involutionary and evolutionary process.
SOME HINTS RELATING TO COLOUR
The orange colour stimulates the etheric body and helps building up that body a great deal. The students are initially recommended to meditate upon the orange of the sky during the sunrise and the sunset hours. Remember, all mendicants in India wear orange robes as a principle. This enables them to absorb the colour through mental engagement on the colour. They also wear an orange brow-mark on their forehead. Orange dispels the negative energies of emotions; it removes congestion and enables the free flow of life currents. Worship of Lord Hanuman, the monkey God, in orange colour is used popularly till date in India as the sixth ray key to overcome the dominance of the emotional body. Tuesday and the sixth phase of the moon are also linked to the orange colour.
The Rose colour is worshipped through the beautiful form of the goddesses, for the rose colour transquilizes, eliminates depression and arrests devitalization. "It improves the will to live", says Master E.K.
Contemplation upon brilliant colour tightens the etheric web and strengthens the etheric body, thus it shuts the door to the entry of the emotional feeling through the emotional body. When cleavages exist in the etheric web, the stimulants of the objective world activate the emotional body and permit the entry through the relaxed elasticity of the entities from the emotional plane. Gradually the physical body turns sick. Disease, Decay and death thus occur to the physical body when the etheric web is week. May we seal the door where evil dwells", instructs Master D.K.
"Master, please, let us receive the influx of Thy "Plenty of Prana" into our systems, so that we may transcend disease, decay and death, realize the highest Truth, the pure Love and the Bliss of existence and serve humanity according to Thy Plan", is the daily prayer suggested by Master C.V.V.
The chief work of Master C.V.V is to strengthen, develop, vitalize and magnetize the etheric body of the humans, through invocation of Prana and conduct of transference of such Prana into the physical body, thereby de-linking the physical form the emotional body. He there by aims at two things: one is to build a strong and healthy physical body and systematically develop the etheric body to its natural electric and magnetic power, so that it survives the physical; meaning, surviving death!
It should be remembered that the primary expression of the etheric body is through the colour violet. Violet precedes the dense physical state. Violet again is reflective of the blue - the higher counterpart. Blue stand for synthesis in the higher worlds, while violet stands for such synthesis in the manifest world. Violet links the Deva kingdom to the visible kingdom and is therefore the medium that unties the human to the Devas. It is the bridge between the visible and the semi-visible and leads to the realization of the invisible.
Esoterically, violet is white and white is violet. So also, blue is white and white is blue. Venus represents all the three shades of Light. Lord Krishna, the blue boy, is said to have descended upon Earth via Venus!
Gayatri, the Light of the three worlds, is one of the chief keys of meditation followed by the Himalayan Aryans from the ancient most times. Contemplation upon Gayatri is a "Sound and Light technique" given by the ancient Seers for realization of one's own etheric form. It is interesting to note that the five faces of Gayatri carry the five aspects of the colour, namely solar light, the lunar light and the colours blue, red and golden yellow. In recent times, Master E.K. is believed to have realized his etheric state of existence through contemplation upon Gayatri. Consequently he stood as an outpost in initiation aspirants in the Gayatri mantra.
THE ETHERIC BODY AND HEALING
When the emotional body's impact is neutralize and the physical body is firmly linked to the etheric, healing becomes effortless. Pranic healing is possible for those who develop their etheric vehicle as per the instruction given in this book. It is for this reason all Initiates are natural healers. The secret of esoteric healing lies in the truth that the emotion should give way to pranic flow. It requires a disciplined approach to the subject until emotions and selfish intellect are sacrificed in the altar of the systematic esoteric practice enumerated in this chapter, as otherwise, all healing work remains a feeling work; that's all. Healing is the clear mental work achieved with the help of a vibrant etheric body that is capable of transmitting pranic force.
Let not the etheric body be confused with the body of the soul. The soul itself is the vehicle of the Spirit. The casual body is the vehicle of the soul, which is radiant white in colour. The etheric body is the vehicle of Prana. It is a body of golden light - flame coloured, which is the subtle form that holds the dense physical body.
One of the principal and immediate objects of endeavour on the part of the Masters of Wisdom during the present time, is to stimulate, purify and build the etheric body of the humans, which shall be the first step towards immortality.
When the etheric body is at function in the occultist, one stands midway the pineal gland and the pituitary body at the centre of the forehead. That centre is the magnetic field of the soul, which is referred to as "the light in the head" or the third eye. All magical work on the physical plane is carried out by the occultist by focusing in the third eye.
The substratum of energy that functions through the etheric body is air. Breath handled through the science of pranayama builds and strengthens the etheric body.
VENUS - ANTAHKARANA
Venus in Libra is the ruler for the disciple when he is in the process of building the Antahkarana. Saturn in Libra helps transformation of the chakras into lotuses for sustained effort to build the Antahkarana. Saturn helps to transcend the pairs of opposites and to complete the building of the Antahkarana. From the stage of formation of lotuses, Venus, once again, becomes the ruler of Libra to realize and manifest pure Love, which is no different from pure Will.
VENUS - PISCES
Venus, the Lord of Taurus and the ruler of Libra for the disciple, finds its fullest expression in Pisces. Through look and through expression, a disciple can elevate the beings into spiritual awareness when Venus in Pieces is realized. Such disciples are called "Truth Bearers".
The World Teacher Temple / Dhanishta
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