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Editorial 5

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 Theosophical Fields of Attention


 Theosophy has been called, on the title page of its core work, The Secret Doctrine, ‘the synthesis of science, religion and philosophy.’ This three terms almost include the totality of the human culture as far as the higher mind is concerned. Science, religion and philosophy are the three faculties of the human mind to approach the questions of reality, truth and the essence of being.

When a theosophist talks about science, he or she usually means Science in its widest sense. Not only the science of our universities, but also the science outside our established institutes of learning. Science not only of our times, nor science only of our modern culture. Science is rather an attitude, an approach of the mind than a strictly defined system with its rules, regulations and forbidden grounds. No doubt science, or at least inquiry, has existed since the beginning of human mind. Is has has its own history, even prehistory, its own evolution, its ups and downs, its discoveries and forgettings and rediscoveries. Great thinkers throughout the ages have, either because it was the nature of their inner desires to know and understand the world around and within, or for practical reasons, thought about how things work and what can be known about the objects of study. On this quest, medical sciences, astrological sciences, biologies, astronomies, agricultural sciences, ecologies, metaphysical, magic and occult sciences, alchemies and others have and are developed as well as their practical implications and applications. Just to mention some example of sciences which are mainly studied and practiced outside established scientific institutions are acupuncture, based on detailed knowledge of the energetic physiology of the human and other bodies by the Chinese, or the Ayurvedic health balance and healing system of India dating from a time of origin we can only guess, or the pre-Columbian astronomy of the Incas.

Most interesting is that scientists in the far past generally had a deeper feeling for the inner sides of nature, were closer to nature and had their methods of developing inner senses rather than having the necessity of external instruments. They had, of course, no access to our modern techniques and instruments, which, however refined, exclusively cover the world of physical phenomena. Also, science, philosophy and religion were not separate pursuits at odd with each other, because one had full confidence in seers, adepts and enlightened teachers who, by their ascetic and yogic practices, had gained insights above the levels of average perceptions and knowledge. These enlightened teachers themselves had followed the instructions given by the great cyclic preceptors of humankind, like Buddhas and Vedic seers. All this is within the theosophical field of attention and of full interest for today and the future development of our present culture. We will pay regular attention to such subjects, and moreover you can find hundreds of articles on them in the Theosophical magazines published the world over since 1875.

On this websites we also include articles concerning the α-sciences such as economy, sociology, and educational sciences as seen from Theosophical and various cultural backgrounds, because these sciences have great impact on general human well-being on earth. One of the purposes of Theosophy, is, together with Mahayana Buddhism – ‘to relieve and were possible prevent the suffering of all living beings.’ No doubt much external and psychological suffering as well as shabby ethics are due to weaknesses in our economic and educational philosophies and practices.

The second field of attention is that of religion and religions. Religion per se is beyond religions. It is the yearning of the human heart to unify with the cosmic essence, call it God or Truth or monadic essence or life-essence or by any other name, not partly, but in its completeness. The method of universal religion is what we all know within our heart: genuine ethics. Religions have developed many external methods and trainings and forms of meditation which can be very useful for the individual standing in the world, and to help people making distinctions between what is right and wrong, and to develop a sharp mind and intuition, and methods to communicate with divine beings, but essentially none of these is the real message directly from our own heart. Theosophy, together with many religions, teaches that the divine is in the heart of every living entity, and one with the universal, the infinite and the ever-being. All these individual essences, though seemingly separate, are together One Essence. The path we have to go therefore flows forth our heart, which is eternity and infinity and Truth itself. The path is ever present and ever whispered into us, into our consciousness – if we wish to pay attention and follow. Doctrines can help us to refine and ennoble our intuitive faculty (buddhi).

Religions have been founded by great teachers, and whatever their form they show to the people (even when apparently irreconcilable) they conceal the same inner Truths. Studying various religions and comparing their true teachings help to make the picture whole. One can take the beauty one needs out of every religion. True religions satisfy the still simple of heart as well as intellectuals and mystics, and point out a way of a sane worldly life as well as inner life and discovery, while true occultists and theosophists understand the teachings on the deepest levels possible at this moment. As you can see, we have included articles on Religion as well as on various religions – in which we we try to pay attention to the deepest essences.

Again not separate from the others is philosophy, in its true meaning of ‘love for wisdom.’ Philosophy has been important in the western culture especially since the great impulses initiated from ancient Greece. But philosophy is not-at-all confined to western culture. Indeed the West was pretty ‘late’ and even at this moment it still has to recognize or rediscover truths that have been formulated elsewhere thousands of years ago.

Science, religion and philosophy belong to the human species, and represent the eye (or senses), the heart and the higher mind respectively. All are ultimately one. All pursuits ultimately lead to the same. All three are perforated with pitfalls for the unwary – necessary to learn to clearly discriminate the true from the false. There is no short way to nirvana, as some half-baked religious preceptors tend to sell. The human quest has a purpose to which all higher human pursuits lead.

Not included in the above three was the term ‘Art.’ True artists give expression to their deepest understandings, their deepest heartfelt conceptions, and true artists are able to wrap their inner recognitions in such forms, colors and sounds, in such veils that they thus unveil deeper mystic truths or their own deeper cosmic understandings for those who are open and ready to receive them. Art can transfer truths and wisdom for which no prose is at hand. Thus artists can have the capacity to teach beyond the limitations of the reasoning mind. So can Nature. Nature and Art are one. Nature is the Art of the cosmic mind and of Cosmic love, or ‘God’ if you want. They tap from the same divine essence. Nature is the ultimate teacher of art. A true student of Nature, in his or her inner silence, can learn all there is for people to learn.