Terminology & Concepts from Blavatsky's The Secret Doctrine

This collection is gathered from a work of much greater proportions, The Secret Doctrine, set like a gem in the more than 14 volumes of H.P. Blavatsky's Collected Writings.   The Secret Doctrine is meant to be unlocked with at least seven terminological and classificational keys — not to speak of dimensions opened up by conceptual or intuitive insight.   It should be kept in mind that these quotes are wrested from longer passages treating the same or similar topic;   they are not intentionally wrenched out of context.
Feel free to read the original.2

All references to H.B. Blavatsky's Secret Doctrine are to the Theosophical Publishing House's 1988 Centennial facsimile ed.   All emphases (underlined) are the compiler's, as are comments (sometimes correlating A.A. Bailey's terminology) found in standard ([...]) brackets.
This compilation is part of a series available to members of the Theosophical Society in Boston (Besant Lodge), Inc., meant for the use of our weekly study groups, and representing both the insights and limitations of its compiler. If it is used outside these immediate groups, he requests that you please exercise discernment. Thank you for this consideration.

STANZA VII.7   "This is thy present Wheel" — said the Flame to the Spark.
(a)   The Day when the Spark will re-become the Flame, when Man will merge into his Dhyan Chohan [both an individual unit and a group; not a Dhyani-Buddha per se — P.K.].... [SDI.265]

In the Catechism, the Master is made to ask the pupil:
  "Lift thy head, O Lanoo; dost thou see one, or countless lights above thee, burning in the dark midnight sky?"
  "I sense one Flame, O Gurudeva, I see countless undetached sparks shining in it." [SDI.120]
  What is that "Spark" which "hangs from the flame?"   It is JIVA, the MONAD in conjunction with MANAS, or rather its aroma – that which remains from each personality, when worthy, and hangs from Atma-Buddhi, the Flame, by the thread of life.   In whatever way interpreted, and into whatever number of principles the human being is divided, it may easily be shown that this doctrine is supported by all the ancient religions... [SDI.238]

... Thus in man alone the Jiva is complete.   As to his seventh principle, it is but one of the Beams of the Universal Sun. [SDI.224]

Some years ago we remarked* that "the Esoteric Doctrine may well be called the 'thread-doctrine,' since, like Sutrâtman, in the Vedanta philosophy,† it passes through and strings together all the ancient philosophical religious systems, and reconciles and explains them all."
  * "The Septenary Principle," art. in "Five Years of Theosophy," p. 197.
  † The Atman or Spirit (the Spiritual SELF) passing like a thread through the five subtle bodies (or principles, Koshas) is called "thread-soul," or Sutrâtman in Vedantic philosophy. [SDI.610]


... For the Monad, or Jîva, per se, cannot be called even Spirit:   it is a Ray, a Breath of the Absolute, or the ABSOLUTENESS rather;   and the Absolute Homogeneity, having no relations with the conditioned and relative finiteness, is unconscious on our plane.... [SDI.246-7]
PROEM III.   The fundamental identity of all Souls with the Universal Over-Soul, the latter being itself an aspect of the Unknown Root; and the obligatory pilgrimage for every Soul — a spark of the former — through the Cycle of Incarnation...   ...In other words, no purely spiritual Buddhi (Divine Soul) can have an independent conscious existence before the spark which issued from the pure Essence of the Universal Sixth Principle — or the OVER-SOUL — has (a) passed through every elemental form of the phenomenal world of the Manvantara, and (b) acquired individuality...   ...The pivotal doctrine of the Esoteric Philosophy admits no privileges or special gifts in man, save those won by his own Ego through personal effort and merit throughout a long series of metempsychoses and reincarnations.
[Note:] * "Pilgrim" is the appellation given to our Monad (the Two in one) during its cycle of incarnations. [SDI.17]

... And from this Duad proceeded all the Scintillas of the three Upper and the four Lower Worlds or Planes — which are in constant interaction and correspondence. [SDI.618]

Three distinct representations of the Universe, in its three distinct aspects, are impressed upon our thoughts by the Esoteric Philosophy: the Pre-existing, evolved from the Ever-existing, and the Phenomenal — the world of illusion, the reflection, and shadow thereof.   ...In the former countries [India, Chaldea, China, Greece] these three Universes were allegorized, in exoteric teachings, by the three Trinities, emanating from the central eternal Germ, and forming with it a Supreme Unity:   the initial, the manifested, and the creative Triad, or the Three in One.   The last is but the symbol, in its concrete expression, of the first ideal two. [SDI.278]

"Svabhavat" is the mystic Essence, the plastic Root of physical Nature ...   ...The name is of Buddhist use and a synonym for the four-fold Anima Mundi [Higher Quarternary], the Kabalistic Archetypal World, from whence proceed the Creative, Formative, and Material Worlds;   and the Scintillae or Sparks — the various other worlds contained in the last three. [SDI.98-9]

... And from this Duad proceeded all the Scintillas of the three upper and the four lower worlds or planes — which are in constant interaction and correspondence. [SDI.618]

... Thus saith Idra Suta (in the "Zohar," iii., 292, c.):   "There were old worlds which perished as soon as they came into existence;   worlds with and without form called Scintillas — for they were like the sparks under the smith's hammer, flying in all directions.   Some were the primordial worlds which could not continue long, because the 'aged' — his name be sanctified — had not as yet assumed his form,* the workman was not yet the 'Heavenly man.'"†
  * The form of Tikkun or the Protogonos, the "first-born," i.e., the universal form and idea, had not yet been mirrored in Chaos.
  † The "Heavenly man" is Adam Kadmon — the synthesis of the Sephiroth, as "Manu Swayambhűva" is the synthesis of the Prajâpatis. [SDII.704]

... Out of this Duad, when united in one basic line of the triangle on the lower plane (the upper Triangle of the Sephirothal Tree), emerge the Elohim, or Deity in Cosmic Nature, with the true Kabalists the lowest designation, translated in the Bible "God" (see the same work and page).*   Out of these issue the Scintillas.
  * ... We do not war against the IDEAL REALITY, but the hideous theological Shadow.

The Scintillas are the "Souls," and these Souls appear in the three-fold form of Monads (Units), Atoms and Gods — according to our Teaching.
God, Monad, and Atom are the correspondences of Spirit, Mind, and Body [Atma, Manas, and Sthula Sharira] in man.
... The Monads [Jivas] are the Souls of the Atoms; ...
This relates to cosmic and sub-planetary Monads, not to the super-cosmic Monas, the Pythagorean Monad, as it is called...
...The Monads of the present dissertation are treated, from the standpoint of their individuality, as Atomic Souls, before these Atoms descend into pure terrestrial form. [SDI.619]

As to the "elemental atoms," so called, the Occultists refer to them by that name with a meaning analogous to that which is given by the Hindu to Brahmâ when he calls him ANU, the "Atom."   ...Every elemental atom ... a SOUL; not necessarily a disembodied soul, but a jiva ... a centre of POTENTIAL VITALITY, with latent intelligence in it....   ... All those atom-Souls are differentiations from the ONE, and in the same relation to it as the divine soul — the Buddhi — to its informing and inseparable Spirit, or Atman. [SDI.567]

... Atoms and Souls having been synonymous in the language of the Initiates....   The passage of the SOUL-ATOM "through the Seven Planetary Chambers" had the same metaphysical and also physical meaning. [SDI.568]

... For atoms and Monads, associated or dissociated, simple or complex, are, from the moment of the first differentiation, but the principles, corporeal, psychic, and Spiritual, of the "Gods," [Recall spiritual "Gods," mental "Monads" {Mahat, not Manas}, physical "Atoms," as above {SDI.619}] — themselves the Radiations of primordial nature.   Thus, to the eye of the Seer, the higher Planetary Powers appear under two aspects: the subjective — as influences, and the objective — as mystic FORMS, which, under Karmic law, become a Presence, Spirit and Matter being One, as repeatedly stated.   Spirit is matter on the seventh plane;   matter is Spirit — on the lowest point of its cyclic activity;   and both — are MAYA. [SDI.633]

[on the 5th hierarchy of Creative Powers:]   ... Sebakh or Sevekh "or seventh," as Mr. Gerald Massey says, showing it as having been the type of intelligence, is a dragon in reality, not a crocodile.   He is the "Dragon of Wisdom" or Manas, the "Human Soul," Mind, the Intelligent principle, called in our esoteric philosophy the "Fifth" principle.... [SDI.219]

... For Se-khen is the residence or loka of the god Khem (Horus-Osiris, or Father and Son), hence the "Devachan" of Atma-Buddhi....
It is in Sekhem that lies concealed "the Mysterious Face," or the real man concealed under the false personality, the triple-crocodile of Egypt, the symbol of the higher Trinity or human Triad, Atma, Buddhi and Manas.*   In all the ancient papyri the crocodile is called Sebek (Seventh), while the water is the fifth principle esoterically;   and, as already stated, Mr. Gerald Massey shows that the crocodile was "the Seventh Soul, the supreme one of seven — the Seer unseen." ... [SDI.220]

STANZA VII.7  (b)   The "Watchers" reign over men during the whole period of Satya Yuga and the smaller subsequent Yugas, down to the beginning of the Third Root Race;...
... And that [Secret] Doctrine says that the Dhyani-Buddhas of the two higher Groups, namely, the Watchers or the Architects, furnished the many and various races with divine kings and leaders.   It is the latter who taught humanity their arts and sciences, and the former [Watchers] who revealed to the incarnated Monads that had just shaken off their Vehicles of the lower Kingdoms, and who had, therefore, lost every recollection of their divine origin, the great spiritual truths of the transcendental Worlds.
Thus, as expressed in the Stanza, the Watchers "descend on radiant Earth and reign over men, who are themselves."   The reigning Kings had finished their cycle on Earth and other Worlds, in the preceding Rounds.   ...The next great Manvantara will witness the men of our own Life-Cycle becoming the instructors and guides of a Mankind whose Monads may now be still imprisoned — semi-conscious — in the most intellectual of the animal kingdom, while their lower principles may be animating, perhaps, the highest specimens of the vegetable world.
Thus proceed the cycles of the septenary evolution in Septennial {Seven-fold} {N}nature; ... [SDI.265-7]

... On our nascent Globe, things proceed differently.   The Monad or Jîva, as said in Isis Unveiled [I.302] is, first of all, shot down by the Law of Evolution into the lowest form of matter — the mineral.   After a sevenfold gyration encased in the stone, or that which will become mineral and stone in the Fourth Round, it creeps out of it, say, as a lichen....   All this, up to the Third Round, is formless, as matter, and senseless, as consciousness.   For the Monad, or Jîva, per se, cannot be called even Spirit:   it is a Ray, a Breath of the Absolute, or the ABSOLUTENESS rather;   and the Absolute Homogeneity, having no relations with the conditioned and relative finiteness, is unconscious on our plane.... [SDI.246-7]

This Stanza [IV.16] we shall see is very suggestive. It explains the mystery of, and fills the gap between, the Informing Principle in man — the Higher Self or Human Monad — and the Animal Monad, both one and the same, although the former is endowed with divine intelligence, the latter with instinctual faculty alone....
... It is owing to this rebellion of intellectual life against the morbid inactivity of pure spirit, that we are what we are — self-conscious, thinking men, with the capabilities and attributes of Gods in us, for good as much as for evil. Hence the Rebels are our Saviours. Let the Philosopher ponder well over this, and more than one mystery will become clear to him. It is only by the attractive force of the contrasts that the two opposites — Spirit and Matter — can be cemented together on Earth, and, smelted in the fire of self-conscious experience and suffering, find themselves wedded in Eternity. This will reveal the meaning of many hitherto incomprehensible allegories, foolishly called "fables." [SDII.102-3]

It is the symbolical representation of the great struggle between Divine Wisdom, nous, and its Earthly Reflection, Psuche, or between Spirit and Soul, in Heaven and on Earth. In Heaven — because the divine MONAD had voluntarily exiled itself therefrom, to descend, for incarnating purposes, to a lower plane and thus transform the animal of clay into an immortal God. [SDII.377]

The monad — a truly "indivisible thing," ... — is here rendered as the Atma in conjunction with Buddhi and the higher Manas. This trinity is one and eternal, the latter being absorbed in the former at the termination of all conditioned and illusive life. The monad, then, can be traced through the course of its pilgrimage and its changes of transitory vehicles only from the incipient stage of the manifested Universe. In Pralaya, or the intermediate period between two manvantaras, it loses its name, as it loses it when the real ONE self of man merges into Brahm in cases of high Samadhi.... Atma alone is the one real and eternal substratum of all.... It is called in the Esoteric philosophy "the One Witness," and, while it rests in Devachan, is referred to as "the Three Witnesses to Karma."
Atma (our seventh principle) being identical with the universal Spirit, and man being one with it in his essence, what is then the Monad proper? It is that homogeneous spark which radiates in millions of rays from the primeval "Seven;" — of which seven further on. It is the EMANATING spark from the UNCREATED Ray — a mystery. In the esoteric, and even exoteric Buddhism of the North, Adi Buddha (Chogi dangpoi sangye), the One unknown, without beginning or end, identical with Parabrahm and Ain-Soph, emits a bright ray from its darkness.
This is the Logos (the first), or Vajradhara, the Supreme Buddha (also called Dorjechang). As the Lord of all Mysteries he cannot manifest, but sends into the world of manifestation his heart — the "diamond heart," Vajrasattva (Dorjesempa). This is the second logos of creation, from whom emanate the seven (in the exoteric blind the five) Dhyani Buddhas, called the Anupadaka, "the parentless." These Buddhas are the primeval monads from the world of incorporeal being, the Arupa world, wherein the Intelligences (on that plane only) have neither shape nor name, in the exoteric system, but have their distinct seven names in esoteric philosophy. These Dhyani Buddhas emanate, or create from themselves, by virtue of Dhyana, celestial Selves — the super-human Bodhisattvas. These incarnating at the beginning of every human cycle on earth as mortal men, become occasionally, owing to their personal merit, Bodhisattvas among the Sons of Humanity, after which they may re-appear as Manushi (human) Buddhas. The Anupadaka (or Dhyani-Buddhas) are thus identical with the Brahminical Manasaputra, "mind-born sons" — whether of Brahmâ or either of the other two Trimurtian Hypostases, hence identical also with the Rishis and Prajâpatis.... [SDI.570-1]

... In the Northern Buddhist system, or the popular exoteric religion, it is taught that every Buddha, while preaching the good law on earth, manifests himself simultaneously in three worlds: in the formless, as Dhyani Buddha, in the World of forms, as a Bodhisattva, and in the world of desire, the lowest (or our world) as a man. Esoterically the teaching differs: The divine, purely Adi-Buddhic monad manifests as the universal Buddhi (the Mahâ-buddhi or Mahat in Hindu philosophies) the spiritual, omniscient and omnipotent root of divine intelligence, the highest anima mundi [cosmic psychic, or Vishnu, Aspect] or the Logos. This descends "like a flame spreading from the eternal Fire, immoveable, without increase or decrease, ever the same to the end" of the cycle of existence, and becomes universal life on the Mundane Plane. From this Plane of conscious Life shoot out, like seven fiery tongues, the Sons of Light, still themselves, to whom may be applied the Brahmanical mystic phrase: "Thou art `THAT' — Brahm." It is from these Dhyani-Buddhas that emanate their chhayas (Shadows) the Bodhisattvas of the celestial realms, the prototypes of the super-terrestrial Bodhisattvas, and of the terrestrial Buddhas, and finally of men. The "Seven Sons of Light" are also called "Stars."
The star under which a human Entity is born, says the Occult teaching, will remain for ever its star, throughout the whole cycle of its incarnations in one Manvantara [planetary, not solar mahamanvantaric, cycle]. But this is not his astrological star. The latter is concerned and connected with the personality, the former with the INDIVIDUALITY. The "Angel of that Star, or the Dhyani-Buddha will be either the guiding or simply the presiding "Angel," so to say, in every new rebirth of the monad, which is part of his own essence, through [sic] his vehicle, man, may remain for ever ignorant of this fact. The adepts have each their Dhyani-Buddha....
... There are seven chief groups of such Dhyan Chohans, which groups will be found and recognised in every religion, for they are the primeval SEVEN Rays. Humanity, occultism teaches us, is divided into seven distinct groups and their sub-divisions, mental, spiritual, and physical.* (* Hence the seven chief planets, the spheres of the indwelling seven spirits, under each of which is born one of the human groups which is guided and influenced thereby....) The monad, then, viewed as ONE, is above the seventh principle (in Kosmos and man), and as a triad, it is the direct radiant progeny of the said compound UNIT, not the breath (and special creation out of nihil) of "God," as that unit is called; for such an idea is quite unphilosophical, and degrades Deity, dragging it down to a finite, attributive condition. As well expressed by the translator of the "Crest-Jewel of Wisdom" — though Iswara [the Brahmâ Aspect only — SDI.451] is "God" "unchanged in the profoundest depths of pralayas and in the intensest activity of the manvantaras"..., still "beyond (him) is `ATMA,' round whose pavilion is the darkness of eternal MAYA." [SDI.572-4]

... as seven distinct rays radiate from the 'Central Spiritual Sun,' [Sirius and the Sirian System of Seven Suns, reflected into the Heart of the Sun] all adepts and Dhyan Chohans are divisible into seven classes, each of which is guided, controlled, and overshadowed by one of the seven forms or manifestations of the divine Wisdom." (T. Subba Row, Theosophist, August 1886)
It is then the "Seven Sons of Light" — called after their planets and (by the rabble) often identified with them — namely Saturn, Jupiter, Mercury, Mars, Venus, and — presumably for the modern critic, who goes no deeper than the surface of old religions* — the Sun and Moon, which are, according to the Occult teachings, our heavenly Parents, or "Father," synthetically. Hence, as already remarked, polytheism is really more philosophical and correct, as to fact and nature, than anthropomorphic monotheism. Saturn, Jupiter, Mercury, and Venus, the four exoteric planets, and the three others, which must remain unnamed, were the heavenly bodies in direct astral and psychic communication with the Earth, its Guides, and Watchers — morally and physically; the visible orbs furnishing our Humanity with its outward and inward characteristics, and their "Regents" or Rectors [Logoi as Flames or 7 Spirits Before the Throne] with our Monads and spiritual faculties.
This subject will, of course, be considered mere vagary by all those who confuse the universal order of being with their own systems of classification.... [SDI.574]

There are Seven Classes of Pitris, as shown below, three Incorporeal and four Corporeal; and two kinds, the Agnishvâtta and the Barhishad. And we may add that, as there are two kinds of Pitris, so there is a double and a triple set of Barhishad and Agnishvâtta. The former, having given birth to their Astral Doubles, are reborn as Sons of Atri, and are the "Pitris of the Demons," or Corporeal Beings, on the authority of Manu [Mânava-Dharma Shâstra, iii.196]; while the Agnishvâtta are reborn as Sons of Marîchi, a Son of Brahmâ, and are the "Pitris of the Gods." [Matsya and Padma Purânas and Kullűka on the Mânava-Dharma Shâstra, iii.195] [SDII.89]

This Stanza [IV.16] we shall see is very suggestive. It explains the mystery of, and fills the gap between, the Informing Principle in man — the Higher Self or Human Monad — and the Animal Monad, both one and the same, although the former is endowed with divine intelligence, the latter with instinctual faculty alone.... [SDII.102-3]

... It is "the same and the other," as the great Initiate-Philosopher [Plato] once said; for the Ego — the "Higher Self" when merged with and in the Divine Monad — is Man, and yet the same as the "other"; the Angel in him incarnated is the same with the Universal Mahat. [SDII.88]

The student will now be better prepared to see that between the three Upadhis of the Raja Yoga and its Atma, and our three Upadhis, Atma, and the additional three divisions, there is in reality but very little difference. Moreover, as every adept in cis-Himalayan or trans-Himalayan India, of the Patanjali, the Aryasanga or the Mahayana schools, has to become a Raja Yogi, he must, therefore, accept the Taraka Raja classification in principle and theory whatever classification he resorts to for practical and occult purposes. Thus, it matters very little whether one speaks of the three Upadhis with their three aspects and Atma, the eternal and immortal synthesis, or calls them the "seven principles." [SDI.158]

The same for the Septenary Division of Kosmos and human principles. ... First of all, the mundane Egg which contained Brahmâ, or the Universe, "was externally invested with seven natural elements...; ... then the "World" is said to be "encompassed on every side" by seven elements, also within the egg... ... We answer that there are, in fact, only six principles in man; since his body is no principle, but the covering, the shell thereof. [This is also the case with the 7th or outer ring or shell of iron in the Hindu and Buddhist Chakravala cosmological unit, the Mt. Meru holographic loka system unit.] So with the planetary chain;... The language of occultism is varied.... Evidently there must be an occult meaning in the statement under consideration.... [SDI.616]

It now becomes plain that there exists in Nature a triple evolutionary scheme, for the formation of the three periodical Upâdhis; or rather three separate schemes of evolution, which in our system are inextricably interwoven and interblended at every point. These are the Monadic (or spiritual), the intellectual, and the physical evolutions. These three are the finite aspects, or the reflections on the field of Cosmic Illusion, of ATMA, the seventh, the ONE REALITY.
1. The Monadic is, as the name implies, concerned with the growth and development into still higher phases of activity of the Monads, in conjunction with:—
2. The Intellectual, represented by the Manasa-Dhyanis (the Solar Devas, or the Agnishwatta Pitris), the "givers of intelligence and consciousness" to man, and:
3. The Physical, represented by the Chhayas of the Lunar Pitris, round which Nature has concreted the present physical body. This body serves as the vehicle for the "growth," to use a misleading word, and the transformations through Manas and — owing to the accumulation of experiences — of the finite into the INFINITE, of the transient into the Eternal and Absolute. [SDI.181]

1. The First Race, the "Self-born," which are the (astral) shadows of their Progenitors. The body was devoid of all understanding (mind, intelligence, and will). The inner being (the higher self, or Monad), though within the earthly frame, was unconnected with it. The link, the Manas, was not there as yet. [SDII.164]

[H.A. Bjerregaard in New York, on Leibnitz] ... And the lecturer proceeds to show that to Leibnitz atoms and elements are centres of force, or rather "spiritual beings whose very nature is to act,".... Leibnitz's monads, adds the lecturer, "differ from atoms in the following particulars.... Atoms are not distinguished from each other, they are qualitatively alike; but one monad differs from every other monad qualitatively; and every one is a peculiar world to itself....* (* Leibnitz was an absolute Idealist in maintaining that "material atoms are contrary to reason" ... For him matter was a simple representation of the monad, whether human or atomic....) ... Every monad reflects ever other. Every monad is a living mirror of the Universe within its own sphere.... ... in mirroring the world, the monads are not mere passive reflective agents, but spontaneously self-active; they produce the images spontaneously, as the soul does a dream. In every monad, therefore, the adept may read anything, even the future. Every monad or Elemental is a looking-glass that can speak..." [HPB:] It is at this point that Leibnitz's philosophy breaks down. ... [SDI.630-1]

... Esoteric Philosophy, teaching an objective Idealism — though it regards the objective Universe and all in it as Mâyâ, Temporary Illusion — draws a practical distinction between Collective Illusion, Mahâmâyâ, from the purely metaphysical standpoint, and the objective relations in it between various conscious egos {Egos} so long as this Illusion lasts. The Adept, therefore, may read the future in an Elemental Monad, but he has to draw together for this object a great number of them, as each Monad represents only a portion of the Kingdom it belongs to. [SDI.631] [2nd Anupadaka plane latent "atomic soul" or monad? {SDI.570-1} The spark "issuing from the Universal 6th Principle"? {SDI.17}]

But what say the Occult Sciences to this, and what do they add?
They say that what is called collectively Monads by Leibnitz [...†] may be separated into three distinct Hosts, which, counted from the highest planes, are, firstly, "gods," or conscious, spiritual Egos; the intelligent architects, who work after the plan in the Divine Mind. Then come the Elementals, or Monads, who form collectively and unconsciously the grand Universal Mirrors of everything connected with their respective realms. Lastly, the atoms, or material molecules, which are informed in their turn by their apperceptive monads, just as every cell in a human body is so informed. ... There are shoals of such informed atoms which, in their turn, inform the molecules; an infinitude of monads, or Elementals proper, and countless spiritual Forces — Monadless, for they are pure incorporealities,†† ...
† These three "rough divisions" correspond to spirit, mind (or soul), and body, in the human constitution.
†† Brother C.H.A. Bjerregaard, in his lecture ... warns his audience not to regard the Sephiroth too much as individualities, but to avoid at the same time seeing in them abstractions. "We shall never arrive at the truth," he says, "much less the power of associating with those celestials, until we return to the simplicity and fearlessness of the primitive ages, when men mixed freely with the gods, and the gods descended among men and guided them in truth and holiness" (No. 10, Path). . . . "There are several designations for 'angels' in the Bible which clearly show that beings like the Elementals of the Kabala and the monads of Leibnitz, must be understood by that term rather than that which is commonly understood. They are called 'morning stars,' 'flaming fires,' 'the mighty ones,' and St. Paul sees them in his cosmogonic visions as 'Principalities and Powers.' Such names as these preclude the idea of personality, and we find ourselves compelled to think of them as impersonal Existences . . . as an influence, a spiritual substance, or conscious Force." (Path, No. 11, p. 322.)
... The Formless ("Arupa") Radiations, existing in the harmony of Universal Will, and being what we term the collective or the aggregate of Cosmic Will on the plane of the subjective Universe, unite together an infinitude of monads — each the mirror of its own Universe — and thus individualize for the time being an independent mind, omniscient and universal; and by the same process of magnetic aggregation they create for themselves objective, visible bodies, out of the interstellar atoms. For atoms and Monads, associated or dissociated, simple or complex, are, from the moment of the first differentiation, but the principles, corporeal, psychic and Spiritual, of the "Gods," — themselves the Radiations of primordial nature. [SDI.632-3]

... Hence only a few of the doctrines were revealed in their broad outlines, while details were constantly withheld,... ... Of the four Vidyâs, out of the seven branches of Knowledge mentioned in the Puranas — namely, Yajna Vidyâ, the performance of religious rites... ...Mahâ Vidyâ, the great (magic) knowledge... ...Guhya Vidyâ, the science of Mantras... Âtmâ Vidyâ, or the true spiritual and divine Wisdom — it is only the last which can throw final and absolute light upon the teachings of the three first named....
Then, again, another [5th Vidyâ] great perplexity was created in the minds of students by the incomplete exposition of the doctrine of the evolution of the Monads. To be fully realized, both this process and that of the birth of the Globes must be examined far more from their metaphysical aspect, than from what one might call a statistical standpoint... [SDI.168-9]

[Note:] ... Metaphysically speaking, it is of course an absurdity to talk of the "development" of a Monad, or to say that it becomes "man." But any attempt to preserve metaphysical accuracy of language, in the use of such a tongue as the English, would necessitate at least three extra volumes of this work... [it took 5 or 6 of AAB's!] ... It stands to reason that a Monad cannot either progress or develop, or even be affected by the changes of state it passes through. It is not of this world or plane, and may only be compared to an indestructible star of divine light and fire, thrown down on to our Earth, as a plank of salvation for the Personalities in which it indwells. It is for the latter to cling to it; and thus partaking of its divine nature, obtain immortality. Left to itself the Monad will cling to no one; but, like the plank, be drifted away to another incarnation, by the unresting current of evolution. [SDI.174-5]

... The Zeroana Akerne is also the "Boundless Circle of the Unknown Time," from which Circle issues the radiant light — the Universal SUN, or Ormazd† — and the latter is identical with Kronos, in his Ćolian form, that of a Circle. For the circle is Sar, and Saros, or cycle, and was the Babylonian god whose circular horizon was the visible symbol of the invisible, while the sun was the ONE Circle from which proceeded the Cosmic orbs, and of which he was considered the leader. Zero-ana, is the Chackra or circle of Vishnu,... [SDI.113-4]
† Ormazd is the Logos, the "First Born" and the Sun.

Now the evolution of the external form, or body, round the astral, is produced by the terrestrial forces, just as in the case of the lower kingdoms; but the evolution of the internal, or real Man is purely spiritual. It is now no more a passage of the impersonal Monad through many and various forms of matter — endowed at best with instinct and consciousness on quite a different plane — as in the case of external evolution, but a journey of the "Pilgrim-Soul" through various states of not only matter, but of self-consciousness and self-perception, or of perception from apperception.
The Monad emerges from its state of spiritual and intellectual unconsciousness; and, skipping the first two planes — too near the Absolute to permit of any correlation with anything on a lower plane — it gets directly into the plane of Mentality. [Is this HPB's use of "Higher Manas" for Âtmâ on the 3rd plane?] But there is no plane in the whole universe with a broader margin, or a wider field of action, in its almost endless gradations of perceptive and apperceptive qualities, than this plane, which has in its turn an appropriate smaller plane for every "form," from the Mineral Monad up to the time when that Monad blossoms forth by evolution into the Divine Monad. But all the time it is still one and the same Monad, differing only in its incarnations, throughout its ever succeeding cycles of partial or total obscuration of spirit, or partial or total obscuration of matter — two polar antitheses — as it ascends into the realms of mental spirituality, or descends into the depths of materiality. [SDI.174-5]

A Dhyâni has to be an Âtmâ-Buddhi; once the Buddhi-Manas breaks loose from the immortal Âtmâ, of which it (Buddhi) is the vehicle, Âtman passes into Non-Being, which is Absolute Being. [SDI.193]

2. The Dhyânis, [Pitris] are those who have evolved their Bhűta [Doubles] from themselves, which Rűpa [Form] has become the vehicle of Monads [Seventh and Sixth principles] that had completed their cycle of transmigration in the three preceding Kalpas [Rounds]. Then, they [the Astral Doubles] became the men of the first Human Race of the Round. But they were not complete, and were senseless. [Are these principles the 6th and 7th counting UP or DOWN?]
... Meanwhile man — or rather his Monad — has existed on Earth from the very beginning of this Round.
3. ... The human foetus follows now in its transformations all the forms that the physical frame of man assumed, throughout the three Kalpas [Rounds], during the tentative efforts at plastic formation around the Monad, by senseless, because imperfect, matter, in her blind wanderings....
But this "man" belongs to the Fourth Round. As shown, the Monad had passed through, journeyed and been imprisoned in, every transitional form, throughout every kingdom of nature, during the three preceding Rounds. But the Monad which becomes human, is not the Man. In this Round ... no units of any of the kingdoms are animated any longer by Monads destined to become human in their next stage, but only by the lower elementals of their respective realms. These "elementals" will become human Monads, in their turn, only at the next great planetary Manvantara. [SDI.183-4]

Esoteric cosmogony in general, and the evolution of the human Monad especially, differ so essentially in these two books (Esoteric Buddhism; Man), and in other Theosophical works written independently by beginners, that it becomes impossible to proceed with the present work without special mention of these two earlier volumes....
... the first perplexities and misconceptions. One of such has reference to the "Fifth-" and even "Sixth-Rounders."... ... [Some] could not understand the "fallacy" of talking about "Fifth and Sixth-Rounders" in our Fourth Round.... ... But they [the Masters] were simply allowing the speculations to go on, in order to teach a lesson which the Western mind sorely needs. In their conceit and arrogance, and in their habit of materializing every metaphysical conception and term, without allowing any margin for Eastern metaphor and allegory, the Orientalists had made a jumble of the Hindű exoteric philosophy, and the Theosophists were now doing the same with regard to Esoteric teachings. To this day it is evident that the latter have utterly failed to understand the meaning of the term "Fifth and Sixth-Rounders." But it is simply this: every Round brings about a new development, and even an entire change, in the mental, psychic, spiritual and physical constitution of man; all these principles evolving on an ever ascending scale. Hence it follows that those persons who, like Confucius and Plato, belonged psychically, mentally and spiritually to the higher planes of evolution, were in our Fourth Round as the average man will be in the Fifth Round, whose mankind is destined to find itself, on this scale of evolution, immensely higher than is our present humanity.... [SDI.161-2]

And here, we must be allowed a last remark. No true Theosophist, from the most ignorant up to the most learned, ought to claim infallibility for anything he may say or write upon Occult matters. The chief point is to admit that, in many a way, in the classification of either cosmic or human principles, in addition to mistakes in the order of evolution, and especially on metaphysical questions, those of us who pretend to teach others more ignorant than ourselves — all are liable to err.
... Our chief point in the present subject, however, was to show that the Septenary doctrine, or division of the constitution of man, was a very ancient one, and was not invented by us. — This has been successfully done ... [SDII.640]

SOURCE: H.P. Blavatsky, The Secret Doctrine, Centennial facsimile ed.Los Angeles: Theosophical University Press, 1988.
SOURCE: A.A. Bailey, A Treatise on Cosmic Fire. NY: Lucis Publishing Co., 1925, 1962 ed., 1982 pr.

AWE @ HTU / TS in Boston 1992, Compilation Draft 4/93, Loaded to Webpage 11/25/98.