If you have not already done so, I suggest you go back to Chapter Two in this book and review the section where a comparison between Bailey’s overall model and the earlier Theosophical models are made. That will help you have a general sense of how the models fit together. In regards to the Mental Plane (or Manasic Plane) as I mentioned also in that chapter, there are a lot of similarities between the models. To repeat what I said in Chapter Two, Higher Manas in the Theosophical model is essentially equivalent to what is known as the Plane of the Solar Angel in the Bailey model. And, what the Theosophical model calls the Human Soul, or “Higher Ego,” is equivalent to what the Bailey model calls Soul, Causal Body, Ego, or Egoic Lotus. In the Theosophical model you have Lower Manas, which is where the “present personality and lower ego” is placed. The “present personality” is the personality currently in incarnation. This is also similar to the Bailey model. If you look again at her overall model the “personality” covers eighteen subplanes, which include the seven subplanes of the Physical Plane, the seven subplanes of the Emotional Plane, and the four subplanes of the “Plane of the Lower Mind” on the Mental Plane. I have emphasized this for you in the her chart to the right where I have put the circle covering those subplanes and the words “Personality” in her chart. As we are seeing, however, even though the “personality” is in incarnation, it has not necessarily become conscious on all eighteen of these subplanes. Most human beings are not even conscious yet on Bailey’s Mental Plane.
What you need to keep in mind then, is that the “Personality” highlighted here is meant to show that until the person reaches a life time where he or she shifts the conscious focus into the Plane of the Solar Angel, he or she will act as a “Personality” and not as a “Soul.” That “Personality” is becoming an “Integrated Personality” on the upper subplanes of the Emotional Plane, and a “Soul-infused Personality” on the four lower subplanes (the Plane of the Lower Mind) on the Mental Plane, but is not yet a “Soul,” which only takes place on the Plane of the Solar Angel. There, on Bailey’s Plane of the Solar Angel, the “Higher Ego” (as Theosophy calls it), is associated with the “Permanent Reincarnating Individuality” that is the sum-total of numerous lives in incarnation, and not just the “present personality,” which is conscious of only the present life one is incarnated in. In the Bailey writings not much is said about this process of remembering previous incarnations, but as we continue through this book, I will do my best to address this especially as it is related to cleaning up your karma from life to life and learning to consciously create the Mayavirupa.
Having taken a little time to highlight the basic differences between the overall Theosophical model and Bailey’s version of it, I would like now to also draw from some comments that some Theosophical authors have made in regards to the Mental Plane, in particular Arthur. E. Powell and Annie Besant, whose writings, like Bailey’s, came after Blavatsky. As I go up the subplanes of the Mental Plane more specifically in this book I will be much more specific in regards to comparisons with what Arthur E. Powell and Annie Besant have to say in addition to Blavatsky’s writings. But, for now, I would like to mention a few things these two authors bring up in regards to the Mental Plane: the âkâshic records and something known as Devachan.
The Akashic Records
Over one hundred years ago Theosophists were speaking about something known as the “âkâshic records.” These are said to comprise an exact record of every thought, word, feeling and event that has every happened in all of human history in regards to every human being. And, this extensive record is said to be even beyond what takes place in the human family, including within it everything that actually takes place within the entire Universe. Though this may have seemed like a far out and fanciful notion to most educated human beings, one hundred years later with the arrival of the Internet in the 1990’s it does not seem so strange anymore. Now, we know that everything we have ever bothered to post on the Internet in social media or otherwise is in fact stored somewhere most likely for the rest of our lives. Where is it stored? In some tiny little piece of data stored on some computer chip that is most likely not even a millimeter long. In short, it is not too big of a stretch of the imagination anymore to think that maybe there is some cosmic record where all thoughts and events are recorded. Though Bailey does make mention of the âkâshic records in her writings (talking of them mostly as the “astral light”), I am going to draw from the more traditional Theosophists and what they had to say about the âkâshic records here. Over one hundred years ago Theosophists were speaking about something known as the “âkâshic records.” These are said to comprise an exact record of every thought, word, feeling and event that has every happened in all of human history in regards to every human being. And, this extensive record is said to be even beyond what takes place in the human family, including within it everything that actually takes place within the entire Universe. Though this may have seemed like a far out and fanciful notion to most educated human beings, one hundred years later with the arrival of the Internet in the 1990’s it does not seem so strange anymore. Now, we know that everything we have ever bothered to post on the Internet in social media or otherwise is in fact stored somewhere most likely for the rest of our lives. Where is it stored? In some tiny little piece of data stored on some computer chip that isn’t even most likely a millimeter long. In short, it is not too big of a stretch of the imagination now to think that maybe there is some cosmic record where all thoughts and events are stored. Bailey does make mention of the âkâshic records in her writings (talking of them mostly as the “astral light”). But, for now, I thought it might be helpful to look at what other Theosophists had to say about the âkâshic records.
Let’s begin with Arthur E. Powell who states, “The word âkâshic is somewhat of a misnomer, for, though the records read from the âkâsha, or matter of the mental plane, yet they do not really belong to that plane. A still worse name, which is often used in the earlier literature of the subject, was “records of the astral light,” for they lie far beyond the astral plane, only broken glimpses of them being found on the astral plane, as we shall see presently. The word âkâshic is suitable only because it is on the mental plane that we first come definitely into contact with the records and find it possible to do reliable work with them” (The Mental Plane, p. 238). Powell goes on to say that on the Mental Plane, “There the record is full and accurate; also it is impossible to make any mistake in the reading. That is to say, any number of clairvoyants, using mental sight, and examining a certain record, would all see precisely the same reflection, and each would acquire a correct impression from reading it” (The Mental Plane, p. 239—240). Finally, only when we get to the higher levels of the Mental Plane where the Causal Body (Egoic Lotus in Bailey’s system) is found, can we begin to read records that involve multiple lifetimes.
What I feel most interesting in reading the various literature about this topic is how again it implies that everything we do matters. That is why it is so important to make karmic adjustments in our travels up the Mental Plane and beyond through a process of consciously doing the alchemical work to change who we are. And, if Powell is right we can only begin to truly see and remember our thoughts, feelings, and behaviors that we have engaged in throughout this lifetime when we get to the Mental Plane. All of this fits in as well with the ideas that come from the yogic traditions where you learn to do a conscious review of your day before going to sleep and then set the intentions to use your sleep and dream time to learn about the changes you need to make to be a better person the next day.
Bailey also mentions Devachan, but much more is taught about this by other Theosophical writers. Powell states, “This is usually called by Theosophists Devachan, which means literally Shining Land; it is also termed in SanskritDevasthân, the land of the Gods; it is the Svarga of the Hindus, the Sukhâvati of the Buddhists, the Heaven of the Zorastrian, Christian and Mohammedan; it has been called also the “Nirvâna of the common people” (The Mental Plane, p. 171). Powell also goes on to say, “In the older books devachan is descried as a specially guarded part of the mental plane, where all sorrow and evil are excluded by the action of the great spiritual Intelligences who superintend human evolution. It is the blissful resting-place of man where he peacefully assimilates the fruits of his physical life” (The Mental Plane, p. 171). But, then Powell goes on to write at length about how this is not exactly the case as he perceives it. Rather he views Devachan as an after death place where the individual “shuts himself up in his own shell” and from there “reviews his store of experiences, the harvest of the earth-life just closed, separating and classifying them, assimilating what is capable of assimilation rejecting what is effete and useless” (The Mental Plane, p. 179). The purpose for all o fthis is so that “all that was valuable in the moral and mental experiences of the Thinker during the life just ended is worked out, meditated over, and gradually transmuted into definite moral and mental faculty, into powers which he will take with him to his next incarnation” (The Mental Plane, p. 178).
Powell goes on to talk about how many people experience Devachan as a place of bliss, and how in Devachan while we are in this “shell” we are reaping the rewards of only thoughts and feelings that have been unselfish. For this reason some people will experience a longer stay in Devachan than others (though time is not same as we know it at this level or the idea of a longer and shorter stay is not quite adequate languge to use). And, for those who are sufficiently developed spiritually, Devachan is said by Powell (and actually Bailey says a similar thing) to be renounced altogether because there really is no need for review and no desire to “reap rewards.” The experience of Devachan also appears to happen primarily on the 7th, 6th, and 5th subplanes of the Mental Plane, placing it within what Bailey calls the Plane of the Lower Mind. Obviously, there is no way to really prove any of the ideas about Devachan put forward by Theosophy. Having said this within the realm of those studying Near Death Experiences (NDE’s) we do see reported some things that parallel the ideas discussed regarding Devachan, including a life review and experiences of bliss. Because of these parallels it would be interesting to line up Near Death Experiences (NDE’s) with the various subplanes on both Bailey’s Emotional and Mental subplanes.
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