Esoteric Psychology is one of the four branches of that great body of teachings called the Ancient Wisdom. It describes the nature of Manís Soul and Personality and the relationship between them, and how one can adapt the Personality to best express the specific intent and purpose of the Soul. Esoteric Psychology is also referred to as the Psychology of the Soul, the Psychology of the Seven Rays and the Science of the Antakarana.
The Psychology of the Soul
By definition, psychology is the science of the soul - psyche is the soul, and -ology is science, but in practice it has all but completely ignored any existence of an indwelling soul. Instead, psychology had focused almost exclusively on the outermost manifestation of an individual: on the behaviour. Mainstream psychology says that the human personality is the product of its heredity and environment or, to put it into an equation:
P = H x E
There are branches within psychology that have broadened this equation, such as the existential approach of by Maslow, Frankl, Jung, Assigioli and others -- all of whom have made substantial and significant contributions to their field; and yet our schools and universities continue to downplay their work and disregard, if not outright deny, the existence of an indwelling, spiritually motivating entity called the Soul. Esoteric Psychology embraces this entity and includes it in the Personality equation, which now becomes:
P = H x E x S
The Soul, far from being some fictional idea, is a very real and vibrant Being. throughout the history of mankind the existence of the Soul has been the basis of all the major religions and initiate teachings, and its nature has been Ė often perilously Ė recorded and taught in the Ancient Wisdom. Esoteric Psychology proposes that the Soul is an entity that, like Man himself, is evolving. Indeed, Esoteric Psychology stands on the proposition that Man is the outward representative of a twin evolution: the evolution of the Personality of humanity on a physical planet in a planetary scheme, linked to the evolution of a human soul in schemes that exist in much rarer and subtler substances than that a physical planet. This is not such a difficult concept to grasp if we realize that even the grossest living physical structures have subtle, visible parts to them. The hard wood of the hickory, ebony and walnut trees is comprised of living cells, and each piece of wood has living protoplasm, amino acids and filaments of the most ethereal nature. We, as human Personalities, are the outermost, dense structure of a complex Being whose subtle part lies in the stream of evolution in Atma, Buddhi and Manas.
In order for the Soul to evolve, it has to incarnate in matter, because the basic law of evolution necessitates involution. The purpose of incarnation in matter is to learn to dominate the material world and to add this quality to the spark within us. As the physical, emotional and mental bodies of the human Personality undergo the welter of experience in matter they slowly become repolarized over many lives and their higher counterparts in the Soul of Atma, Buddhi and Manas superimpose them. This occurs when the Personality begins to release itself from the bonds of the material world and, hearing the inner call of the Monad, begins the journey back to the Fatherís home.
Psychology of the Seven Rays
The Psychology of the Seven Rays is a study of the nature of the Soul as it resonates and manifests itself according to the qualities of the Seven Rays. The Seven Rays can best begin to be described by Postulate Five of the Seven Basic Postulates of Ancient Wisdom:
"Postulate Five: Our solar system has a septenary nature: it is constructed out of energies which resonate to seven qualities."
Just as the structure of an organism is related to the chromosomes of the nuclei of its cells, so our solar system is activated, constructed and maintained by the output of seven divine chromosomes of Seven Ray Lords. There is nothing in our solar system, at whatever stage of evolution it may stand, which does not belong or respond to the Seven Rays. The Seven Rays are the embodiments of seven types of force which demonstrate to us the seven qualities of deity, whether these be in the form of sound, colour, shape, human Personality, Soul or in the host of other manifestations. The Seven Rays or qualities of the One Life pervade the whole universe and yet remain individual and undiminished. The Sound or Word of each Ray passes down through the heavens, reaching into every solar or planetary sphere on that Ray note right down into ourselves and into the myriad of lesser entities who make us up. The Rays are the builders of the entire human entity; of all its subtle bodies. The Rays cycle in and out of manifestation and every human being is swept into incarnation on the impulse of some Ray, the quality of which colours the Life and Form. The same applies to every animal, plant and mineral.
The Psychology of the Seven Rays arose from the records made from observations of Manís behaviour over a period of some 18 million years on this planet. It is valid for individuals of all races, creeds, castes, sex and colour. It represents the essence of a divine wisdom or Gnosis won by the blood and sweat of some of the foremost leaders of the human race during their struggles through many lives against the planetary environment and the forces of involution. The Psychology of the Seven Rays analyses the anatomy and function of those units of spiritual energy which constitute the vehicle of expression of Manís Soul and which constantly stimulate or moderate the elements of Manís Personality from within and which he comes to recognize as a spiritual conscience. The teachings on the Seven Rays are a key to the true nature of Man, embracing all scientific, occult and mystical knowledge, and provides a framework for understanding Godís plan for atom, cell, plant, galaxy and humanity itself.
The Seven Rays are:
Ray I Will & Power Ray II Love Wisdom Ray III Active Intelligence Ray IV Art & Harmony Through Conflict Ray V Concrete Knowledge & Analytical Science Ray VI Devotion & Idealism Ray VII Ceremonial, Order, Ritual and Magic
Science of the Antakarana
The Hindu word Antakarana does not have a direct English translation, but it is most accurately described as a bridge or channel for communication between the Personality and Soul. It is often referred to as the Rainbow Bridge. Its existence has been known to Man through the centuries, and cultures have described it in ways pertinent to their own mythologies, telling how a gross Personality structure is linked to an ethereal counterpart evolving according to its own laws in a subtle realm. It is through the Antakarana, linking the higher and lower evolutions together, that what is of value in our lives must pass to the Higher Self. The Soul is stirred by such impressions, by unusual energy inputs from the Personality like courage, will, service to humanity, etc. The soul needs this, as it requires part of itself (the Personality) to be down in the objective world. We, as Personalities, receive down the Antakarana glorious energies from the Soul, especially through meditation which is the science of bringing those energies and meaning down. The Soul would always like to be flooding us with two things: Meaning and Energy. These two qualities comprise the real ME Ė the two things that give us the wherewithal to live fulfilling and purposeful lives.
The Personality and Soul are often described as triads of energy, as each is composed of three principle qualities. The Personality, or Lower Triad, is represented by an inverted triangle symbolizing the Physical Body, the Astral (Emotional) Body, and the Lower Mental Body. The Soul or Higher Triad is represented by an upright triangle which symbolizes the corresponding, spiritual qualities of Atma, Buddhi and Manas, respectively. The two triads are connected to each other by the Antakarana. Under the processing of the Seven Rays, the consciousness pervading the Physical Body is shifted to its higher counterpart, the Atmic Body. The pervading consciousness of the Astral Body is transferred to the Buddhic Body, and in the same way the Lower Mental Body is replaced in function by the Manasic Body. The channel between the Lower and Higher Mental Bodies is the pathway or Antakarana through which these major transfers of consciousness are achieved.
One of the most practical applications of the Ray Psychology is in the field of Ray Analysis. Here, one is able to assess the Rays governing the five principle vehicles of expression -- the Soul, the Personality, the Mental Body, the Astral Body and the Physical Body Ė and to learn how to change and integrate them in order to allow the Soul to best express itís purpose. It is a vast and fascinating subject, and the technique for Ray Analysis will be given in detail in future instalments.
Copyright ©2007, Douglas Baker. All Rights Reserved.