From ancient times, a body of spiritual* teaching known as the Ageless Wisdom has been handed down from generation to generation. A systematic and comprehensive account of the evolution of consciousness in man and nature, it describes how the universe came to exist, how it operates, and man’s place within it.
The Ageless Wisdom has provided the inspiration for the arts and sciences throughout the ages and is also the common foundation of all the world’s religions. ‘Esotericism’, as it is sometimes called, is also the art of working with those energies which emanate from the highest spiritual sources.
As humanity matures, further aspects of this previously hidden knowledge are released in a wider, more open manner. Throughout the last 100 years, the Ageless Wisdom Teachings have been communicated through individuals such as Helena Blavatsky, founder of the Theosophical Society, and later by Alice A. Bailey and Helena Roerich.
God and man
Esotericism defines God as the sum total of all the Laws, and all the energies governed by these Laws which make up everything in the manifested and unmanifested universe – all that we see and cannot see. God is also the great Cosmic Being Who ensouls this planet.
Man, in turn, is a ‘Spark of God’, a spiritual being expressing itself through a physical body. Each one of us is essentially divine but, compared to the great achievers throughout history in all religions and fields of human endeavor, most individuals recognize and demonstrate this divinity only to a limited degree.
The Law of Rebirth
The process by which we gradually manifest more of this divinity is rebirth or reincarnation. Like children entering the school system at kindergarten, we begin at a very basic level of human expression, not realizing our true spiritual heritage. Through the experiences of countless lifetimes lived in many countries, with different cultural and religious upbringings, in both male and female bodies of many different racial types and ethnic groups, we learn many lessons through successes and failures, and move forward on our evolutionary journey back to our Source. The gains in each lifetime are carried over to the next.
The Law of Cause and Effect
The ‘method’ used in this educational system is the Law of Cause and Effect (or, in Eastern terms, the Law of Karma) which the Bible would express as: “As you sow, so shall you reap.” In terms of physics, the Law of Cause and Effect could be summarized as: “For every action there is an equal and opposite reaction.” Every thought and deed sets up a cause that inevitably leads to certain effects, for better or worse. By understanding and working within this impersonal Law, we learn to make better choices and gradually take control of our own destiny. Through experiencing all that life in this world has to offer, we ultimately acquire total mastery over ourselves and become perfected beings – Masters of Wisdom – fully manifesting the divinity that dwells in each of us.
The Spiritual Hierarchy
The Masters of Wisdom, together forming the Spiritual Hierarchy, are those members of the human family who have completed the evolutionary journey on this planet and have perfected themselves. As custodians of the Divine Plan, They have inspired all the great human achievements, working from behind the scenes through Their disciples in every field of endeavor. The Masters guide and teach, but it is humanity itself, responding of its own free will to Their stimulus, which creates each new civilization. Today, the Masters are returning to the outer world as a group for the first time in countless millennia.
The continuity of teaching
Throughout history, when humanity has reached a major point of crisis, the Spiritual Hierarchy has sent a Teacher to show the way forward. The best known of these divine messengers in recent times are Krishna, Buddha, Confucius, Jesus and Mohammed. In each case, their teachings have given birth to a new religion.
Virtually every spiritual tradition now expects the return of their revered Teacher to validate the past and to carry on the teaching. Christians await the Christ; Jews, the Messiah; Muslims, the Imam Mahdi or Messiah; Buddhists, the Fifth Buddha; and Hindus, the Lord Krishna. In the esoteric tradition, one individual – the World Teacher – is seen as the fulfillment of all these expectations.
The World Teacher for the current time is Maitreya, the ‘eldest brother’ in the human family and head of the Spiritual Hierarchy. Preferring to be known simply as the Teacher, Maitreya has not come to found a new religion, but to act as a guide and counselor for all humanity – regardless of religious affiliation.
Having perfected and fully manifested within himself the Divine Will, Love, Wisdom and Intelligence of God, Maitreya will reveal a new aspect of God. He will lead us to the recognition of our own divinity and our true identity as souls. Out of this greater spiritual understanding and creative power will come a new livingness, harmony and joy.
The term ‘spiritual’, usually associated with some form of religion or religious practice, actually has a much broader meaning: “All activity which drives the human being forward towards some form of development – physical, emotional, intuitional, social – if it is in advance of his present state, is essentially spiritual in nature.” [the Tibetan Master Djwhal Khul] By this definition, every word, thought and action is potentially spiritual and capable of improving the human condition.