|As a lost mountain climber could find his way
again, sooner or later, by consulting his compass,
so also it helps to consult the hidden compass within
us, as we walk the Spiritual Path. Patrick Drysdale
writes in "Are You on a Spiritual Path?"
(The Times of India, July 6):
Finding a little bit of truth within is like
discovering a hidden compass in your own pocket.
Some find it sooner than others but when you
discover it, you no longer need to go around
asking other people to give you direction. How
do you make contact with this inner guide? You
have to do some digging in order to find it,
like searching for a treasure buried in your
own backyard. The treasure exists, but you need
to know some sensitive secrets about locating
Not wanting to change is one obstacle. An unwillingness
to forgive others and yourself, is a second.
And believing that you already have this treasure
and there's nothing more to experience, is the
third....Changing your reactions to external
events will set new causes in motion and these
new causes will inevitably produce new results.
When things change on the inside, they produce
a corresponding change on the outside....The
more you change, the more your world changes.
Release just one unproductive habit for a week
and see what happens. Let's take grumbling,
as an example. Don't grumble when something
goes wrong. This will feel strange at first,
but do it anyway. The issue here is to challenge
your everyday habits. When you don't go along
with your customary reactions, you're setting
into motion powerful forces that will change
you internally. This same energy will also attract
new conditions and new people into your life
who, likewise, will be less complaining.
Give yourself permission to experiment with
different ways of reacting. Don't shortchange
yourself by using the same emotional response
over and over again in every situation. Try
It's never too late to start. Once you start,
you'll feel a refreshing, new sense of self
starting to emerge and it won't be just another
rearrangement of your old mental furniture.
Discover your inner compass and go all the way.
What you've always wanted is already there,
waiting for you.
"As to the rationale of spiritual development,"
says Mr. Judge, "Theosophy asserts that the
process takes place entirely within the individual
himself...however personal and interior, this
process is not unaided, being possible, in fact,
only through close communion with the supreme
source of all strength." (An Epitome of Theosophy,
What is the cause of diseases?
It is being increasingly accepted that there is
a close relationship between our mind and our
well-being. Anjali Mukerjee has this to say:
Most of us find answers in a physical cause
as in a bacterial infection or wrong food, late
nights, lack of exercise, genetics, etc. But
these explanations seem inadequate when we see
people, who follow every rule in the book and
yet fall prey to diseases. Numerous studies
indicate that at least 25% of the people who
"can't cope" with the stressors in
their lives tend to develop disease more than
Researchers estimate that about 80% of all
major illnesses including cancer, skin disorders,
cardiovascular disease and even backache are
related to mind and behaviour. Stress is perceived
as a psychological problem but it has very real
The stress hormones (cortisone and cortisol)
suppress the immune system, making the body
an easy prey to cold, cough, fever, respiratory
infections etc. It accelerates the metabolism
of proteins, fats and carbohydrates, causing
the body to excrete amino acids, potassium,
magnesium, leading to leg cramps and muscle
fatigue. Furthermore in a disturbed state of
mind, your body cannot absorb nutrients from
the food that you eat. Eventually you become
overfed and undernourished....
Stress is an unavoidable part of life. It is
how we react to it that makes a difference to
our state of health. Some people handle stress
well. These remain calm and collected in most
situations and it has little impact on their
physical or emotional health. (Bombay Times,
A diseased body means that we have ignored our
inner nature and acted as though we were bodies.
Writes Mr. Judge in Letters That Have Helped Me:
"...a correct mental and moral position will
at last bring a sound body, but the process may,
and often does, involve sickness." According
to him, sickness may be looked upon as manifestation
on the physical plane of an inner sickness of
the inner being.
World reform begins with self-reform.
B.K. Jayanti writing from London speaks of fighting
the devils within (Purity, July 2003):
Change in the world begins when we first change
ourselves. It may seem a simplistic approach
to the problems of the world, but the simplest
answers sometimes make the most sense....
The cause of many of the world's problems today
has nothing to do with external causes but can
all be linked to man's ego, his inability to
control his anger and even his greed....
When we have clean hearts and clear minds and
lead by example, these will be manifested to
others in the form of "vibrations"
that we send out and these in turn will inspire
others to emulate the positive direction that
we have chosen, resulting in a wider net of
people looking inward to initiate change.
Let's say that I have love for honesty, it's
going to be that quality that others around
me will appreciate and they will be drawn to
me because of this quality. Although in the
physical dimension it's always opposites that
attract, in the spiritual dimension like attracts
The Law of consubstantiality is an occult law
which advises us to be watchful of our thoughts.
Writes Mr. Judge, in Letters That Have Helped
Thoughts are dynamic. Each one as it leaves
the mind has a vis viva of its own, proportionate
to the intensity with which it was propelled....
A thought, on its departure from the mind, is
said to associate itself with an elemental;
it is attracted wherever there is a similar
vibration, or, let us say, a suitable soil,
just as the winged thistle-seed floats off and
sows itself...in the soil of its natural selection.
Thus the man of virtue, by admitting a material
or sensual thought into his mind—even
though he expel it—sends it forth to swell
the evil impulses of the man of vice, from whom
he imagines himself separated by a wide gulf,
yet to whom he may have just given a fresh impulse
The tree is a graphic symbol
with many meanings. It is more than a beautiful
expression of Mother Nature's creativity. "It
has Shakti," writes Aruna Jethwani (The Times
of India, June 21):
It restores balance in the environment by its
positive force. A tree doesn't have a mind of
its own, only the cosmic heart of the universe.
It responds to human sentiments.
The pipal tree is sacred to Hindus and Buddhists—the
Buddha attained nirvana under this tree. In
the Bhagavad-Gita Krishna said: "I am as
strong as the pipal is among trees."....
Trees have soothing qualities and medicinal
properties. Like some animals, they have a sense
of empathy, too....
T. L. Vaswani said: "A tree is a lesson
in life. A tree has patience. It stands facing
the sun, rain and storm, uncomplaining. A tree
is symbolic of growth. It inspires me to spread
The Puranas exalt the tree, in economic terms
as wealth, as a great asset to mankind. A tree
is perhaps nature's best gift to mankind. It
balances our existence on earth; it provides
shade in summer and fuel in winter; it is economic
Tree worship links us with the Nature spirits.
Nature in all its moods and manifestations represents
harmony and joy. We should partake of it.
The tree is an important symbol, which affords
us an opportunity to study the Law of Correspondence
From the highest antiquity trees were connected
with the gods and mystical forces in nature.
Every nation had its sacred tree, with its peculiar
characteristics and attributes based on natural,
and also occasionally on occult properties,
as expounded in the esoteric teachings. (The
Theosophical Glossary, p. 337)
The Symbol for Sacred and Secret Knowledge
was universally in antiquity, a Tree, by which
a Scripture or a Record was also meant. (S.D.,
I, 128 fn.)
...the Asvattha, tree of Life and Being, whose
destruction alone leads to immortality, is said
in the Bhagavad-Gita to grow with its roots
above and its branches below (Ch. XV). The roots
represent the Supreme Being, or First Cause,
the Logos; but one has to go beyond those roots
to unite oneself with Krishna, who, says Arjuna
(Ch. XI), is "greater than Brahman, and
First Cause...the indestructible, that which
is, that which is not, and what is beyond them."
Its boughs are Hiranyagarbha, the highest Dhyan
Chohans or Devas. The Vedas are its leaves.
He only who goes beyond the roots shall never
return, i.e., shall reincarnate no more during
this age of Brahma. (S.D., I, 406)
All spiritual teachers, without
exception, have emphasized "Forgiveness."
Many psychologists are of the opinion that "Forgiveness"
does more good to the person who forgives than
the one forgiven. "Let go of grudges to calm
your soul and lengthen your life," writes
Line Abrahamian in Reader's Digest (April 2003,
Indian ed.). Many psychologists share this view:
"When you're treated unjustly by another,
anger is a natural response," says Robert
Enright, a professor of educational psychology....
But if these resentful feelings are not resolved,
a grudge will form. Victims may want to hold
a grudge because it gives them a regained sense
of control and superiority. However, when nursing
a grudge, you're essentially stuck in the victim
role and inviting anger to become a companion
in your everyday life—and a toxin to your
"Forgiveness," says Carl Thoresen,
principal investigator of the Stanford Forgiveness
Project in California, "is to experience
more moments of peace and to reframe how one
feels about the offence and those seen as responsible.
It is moving from continually replaying your
personal grievance story to revising it so that
you are no longer a victim of your past."...
Remember how grateful you were when someone
forgave you? Once you can empathize with your
offender, forgiveness becomes an act of grace.
Even if the person to whom you're offering
forgiveness doesn't seem to care or doesn't
admit to being wrong, you will feel healthier
and happier. "Forgiveness is a gift we
give ourselves," says Robin Casarjian,
director of a foundation in Boston that teaches
forgiveness in prisons.
"If we hold everyone up to our rigid expectations,
we're setting ourselves up for disappointment,"
says Kathleen Lawler, professor of psychology....
Start small by learning how to forgive minor
slights. And over time, you'll be able to forgive
"One forgiving act is the beginning,"
adds Enright. "As you continue offering
forgiveness, your identity will no longer be
that of a victim but of one who's powerful in
the face of adversity."
Buddha, the greatest psychologist of all time,
describes the inner state of the unforgiving man
"He reviled me, he beat me and conquered
and then plundered me," who express such
thoughts tie their mind with the intention of
retaliation. In them hatred will not cease.
(The Dhammapada, Verse 3)
Madame Blavatsky gives the rationale for practising
...we cannot recommend too strongly mercy,
charity, and forgiveness of mutual offences.
Resist not evil, and render good for evil, are
Buddhist precepts, and were first preached in
view of the implacability of Karmic law. For
man to take law into his own hands is anyhow
a sacrilegious presumption....a man who, believing
in Karma, still revenges himself and refuses
to forgive every injury, thereby rendering good
for evil, is a criminal and only hurts himself.
As Karma is sure to punish the man who wronged
him, by seeking to inflict an additional punishment
on his enemy, he, who instead of leaving that
punishment to the great Law adds to it his own
mite, only begets thereby a cause for the future
reward of his own enemy and a future punishment
for himself. (The Key to Theosophy, p. 198)
Men have always found that some events were
so inevitable that, for want of knowledge of
the law of Karma, they have said, "These
things were destined." But when we grasp
the meaning of Karma, we see that destiny is
only the working out in action of causes so
powerful that no act of ours and no other sort
of Karma could by any possibility either avert
or modify the result. This view does not conflict
with what some call the "immutable decrees
of Karma," because those decrees are the
resultant of numerous Karmic factors, the absence,
nullification, or postponement of any one of
which would change the supposable result. If,
however, we imagine that our life today is only
that due to post Karma from a previous incarnation,
we make the error leading to a belief in destiny
or fate. But as we are experiencing the effects
of Karma from this life as well as from many
previous ones, it follows that the events in
a man's life are due to the balancing of Karmic
—W. Q. Judge