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THE VOICE OF THE SILENCE

From the BOOK OF THE GOLDEN PRECEPTS

 
 

For the Daily Use of Lanoos (Disciples)

Dedicated to the Few

 
 

FRAGMENT III

THE SEVEN PORTALS

 
 

"UPADHYAYA,1 the choice is made, I thirst for Wisdom. Now hast thou rent the veil before the secret Path and taught the greater Yana.2 Thy servant here is ready for thy guidance."

"'Tis well, Shravaka.3 Prepare thyself, for thou wilt have to travel on alone. The Teacher can but point the way. The Path is one for all, the means to reach the goal must vary with the Pilgrims.


Footnote:
1Upadhyaya is a spiritual preceptor, a Guru. The Nothern Buddhists choose these generally among the Narjol, saintly men, learned in gotrabhu-jnana and jnana-darshana-shuddhi, teachers of the Secret Wisdom
2Yana - vehicle; thus Mahayana is the "Great Vehicle," and Illnayana, the "Lesser Vehicle", the names for two Schools of religious and philosophical learning in Northern Buddhism.
3Shravaka - a listener, or student who attends to the religious instructions. From the root Shru. When from theory he goes into practice or performance of asceticism, he becomes a Shramanas, "exerciser," from Shrama, action. As Hardy shows, the two appellations answer to the words akoustikoi and asketai of the Greeks.

Voice of the Silence, page 49


 
 

Which wilt thou choose, O thou of dauntless heart? The Samtan1 of "Eye Doctrine", fourfold Dhyana, or thread thy way through Paramitas,2 six in number, noble gates of virtue leading to Bodhi and to Pranja, seventh step of Wisdom?

The rugged Path of fourfold Dhyana winds on uphill. Thrice great is he who climbs the lofty top.

The Paramita heights are crossed by a still steeper path. Thou hast to fight thy way through portals seven, seven strongholds held by cruel crafty Powers - passions incarnate.

Be of good cheer, Disciple; bear in mind the golden rule. Once thou hast passed the gate Srotapatti,3 "he who the stream hath entered";


Footnote:
1Samtan (Tibetan), the same as the Sanskrit Dhyana, or the state of meditation, of which there are four degrees.
2Paramitas, the six transcendental virtues; for the priests there are ten.
3Srotapatti - (lit.) - "he who has entered the stream" that leads to the Nirvanic ocean. This name indicated the first Path. the name of the second is the Path of Sakridagamin, "he who will receive birth (only) once more." The third is called Anagamin, "he who will be reincarnated no more," unless he so desires in order to help mankind. The fourth Path is known as that of Rahat or Arhat. This is the highest. An Arhat sees Nirvana during his life. For him it is no post-mortem state, but Samadhi, during which he experiences all Nirvanic bliss.
NOTE. How little one can rely upon the Orientalists for the exact words and meaning, is instanced in the case of three alleged "authorities." Thus the four names just explained are given by R. Spence Hardy as: 1. Sowan; 2. Sakradagami; 3. Anagami and 4. Arya. By the Rev. J. Edkins they are given as: 1. Srotapanna; 2. Sagardagam; 3. Anaganim, and 4. Arhan. Schlagintweit again spells them differently, each, moreover, giving another and a new variation in the meaning of the term.

Voice of the Silence, page 50


 
 

once thy foot hath pressed the bed of the Nirvanic stream in this or any future life; thou hast but seven other births before thee, O thou of adamantine Will.

Look on. What seest thou before thine eye, O aspirant to God-like-Wisdom?

"The cloak of darkness is upon the deep of matter; within its folds I struggle. Beneath my gaze it deepens, Lord; it is dispelled beneath the waving of thy hand. A shadow moveth, creeping like the stretching serpent coils.... It grows, swells out, and disappears in darkness."

It is the shadow of thyself outside the PATH cast on the darkness of thy sins.

"Yea, Lord; I see the PATH; its foot in

Voice of the Silence, page 51


 
 

mire, its summit lost in glorious light Nirvanic. And now I see the ever narrowing Portals on the hard and thorny way to Jnana".1

Thou seest well, Lanoo. These portals lead the aspirant across the waters on "to the other shore".2 Each Portal hath a gloden key that openeth its gate; and these keys are:

1. DANA, the key of charity and love immortal.

2. SHILA, the key of Harmony in word and act, the key that counterbalances the cause and the effect, and leaves no further room for Karmic action.

3. KSHANTI, patience sweet, that nought can ruffle.

4. VIRAGA, indifference to pleasure and to pain, illusion conquered, truth alone perceived.

5. VIRYA, the dauntless energy that fights its


Footnote:
1Knowledge, Wisdom.
2"Arrival at the shore" is with the Northern Buddhists synonymous with reaching Nirvana through the exercise of the six and the ten Paramitas (virtues).

Voice of the Silence, page 52


 
 

way to the supernal TRUTH, out of the mire of lies terrestrial.

6. DHYANA, whose golden gate once opened leads the Narjol1 towards the realm of Sat eternal and its ceaseless contemplation.

7. PRAJNA, the key to which makes of a man a God, creating him a Bodhisattva, son of the Dhyanis.

Such to the Portals are the golden keys.

Before thou canst approach the last, O weaver of thy freeedom, thou hast to master these Paramitas of perfection - the virtues transcendental six and ten in number - along the weary Path.

For, O Disciple! before thou wert made fit to meet thy Teacher face to face, thy MASTER ligth to light, what wert thou told?

Before thou canst approach the foremost gate thou hast to learn to part thy body from thy mind, to dissipate the shadow, and to live in the


Footnote:
1A Saint, an Adept.

Voice of the Silence, page 53


 
 

eternal. For this, thou hast to live and breathe in all, as all thou perceivest breathes in thee; to feel thyself abiding in all things, all things in SELF.

Thou shalt not let thy senses make a playground of thy mind.

Thou shalt not separate thy being from BEING, and the rest, but merge the Ocean in the drop, the drop within the Ocean.

So shalt thou be in full accord with all that lives; bear love to men as though they were thy brother-pupils, disciples of one Teacher, the sons of one sweet mother.

Of teachers there are many; the MASTER-SOUL is one,1 Alaya, the Universal Soul. Live in that MASTER as ITS ray in thee. Live in thy fellows as they live in IT.

Before thou standest on the threshold of the Path; before thou crossest the foremost Gate, thou hast to merge the two into the One and


Footnote:
1The "MASTER-SOUL" is Alaya, the Universal Soul or Atma, each man having a ray of it in him and being supposed to be able to identify himself with and to merge himself into it.

Voice of the Silence, page 54


 
 

sacrifice the personal to SELF impersonal, and thus destroy the "path" between the two - Antaskarana.1

Thou hast to be prepared to answer Dharma, the stern law, whose voice will ask thee at thy first, at thy initial step:

"Hast thou complied with all the rules, O thou of lofty hopes?

"Hast thou attuned thy heart and mind to the great mind and heart of all mankind? For as the sacred River's roaring voice whereby all Nature-sounds are echoed back,2 so must the heart


Footnote:
1Antaskarana is the lower Manas, the Path of communication or cummunion between the personality and the higher Manas or human Soul. At death it is destroyed as a Path or medium of communication, and its remains survive in a form as the Kama-rupa - the "shell."
2The Northern Buddhists, and all Chinamen, in fact , find in the deep roar of some of the great and sacred rivers the key-note of Nature. Hence the simile. It is a well-known fact in Physical Science, as well as in Occultism, that the aggregate sound of Nature - such as is heard in the roar of great rivers, the noise produced by the waving tops of trees in large forests, or that of a city heard at a distance - is a definite single tone of quite an appreciable pitch. This is shown by physicists and musicians. Thus Prof. Rice (Chinese Music) shows that the Chinese recognize the fact thousands of years ago by saying that "the waters of the Hoang-ho rushing by, intoned the kung," called "the great tone" in Chinese music; and he shows this tone corresponding with the F, "considered by modern physicists to be the actual tonic of Nature." Professor B. Silliman mentions it, too, in his Principles of Physics, saying that "this tone is held to be the middle F of the piano; which may, therefore, be considered the key-note of Nature."

Voice of the Silence, page 55


 
 

of him 'who in the stream would enter', thrill in response to every sigh and thought of all that lives and breathes".

Disciples may be likened to the strings of the soul-echoing Vina; mankind, unto its sounding board; the hand that sweeps it to the tuneful breath of the GREAT WORLD-SOUL. The string that fails to answer 'neath the Master's touch in dulcet harmony with all the others, breaks - and is cast away. So the collective minds of Lanoo-Shravakas. They have to be attuned to the Upadhyaya's mind - one with the Over-Soul - break away.

Thus do the "Brothers of the Shadow" - the murderers of their Souls, the dread Dad-Dugpa clan.1


Footnote:
1The Bhons or Dugpas, the sect of the "Red Caps", are regarded as the most versed in sorcery. They inhabit Western and Little Tibet and Bhutan. They are all Tantrikas. It is quite ridiculous to find Orientalists who have visited the borderlands of Tibet, such as Schlagintweit and other, confusing the rites and disgusting practices of these with the religious beliefs of the Eastern Lamas, the "Yellow Caps," and their Narjols or holy men. As an instance, see page 59, footnote No. 1.

Voice of the Silence, page 56


 
 

Hast thou attuned thy being to Humanity's great pain, O candidate for light?

Thou hast? ....Thou mayest enter. Yet, ere thou settest foot upon the dreary Path of Sorrow, 'tis well thou should'st first learn the pitfalls on thy way.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Armed with the Keys of Charity, of love and tender mercy, thou art secure before the gate of Dana, the gate that standeth at the entrance of the PATH.

Behold, O happy Pilgrim! The portal that faceth thee is high and wide, seems easy of access. The road that leads there through is straight and smooth and green. 'Tis like a sunny glade in the dark forest depths, a spot on earth mirrored from Amitabha's paradise. There, nightingales of hope and birds of radiant plumage sing perched in green bowers, chanting success to fearless Pilgrims. They sing of Bodhisattvas; virtues five, the fivefold source of Bodhi power, and of the seven steps in Knowledge.

Voice of the Silence, page 57


 
 

Pass on! For thou has brought the key; thou art secure.

And to the second gate the way is verdant too. But it is steep and winds up hill; yea, to its rocky top. Grey mists will overhang its rough and stony height, and all be dark beyond. As on he goes, the song of hope soundeth more feeble in the pilgrim's heart. The thrill of doubt is now upon him; his step less steady grows.

Beware of this, O candidate! Beware of fear that spreadeth, like the black and soundless wings of midnight bat, between the moonlight of thy Soul and thy great goal that loometh in the distance far away.

Fear, O Disciple, kills the will and stays all action. If lacking in the Shila virtue - the pilgrim trips, and Karmic pebbles bruise his feet along the rocky path.

Be of sure foot, O Candidate. In Kshanti's1 essence bathe thy Soul; for now thou dost


Footnote:
1Kshanti, "patience"; vide supra the enumeration of the golden keys.

Voice of the Silence, page 58


 
 

approach the portal of that name, the gate of fortitude and patience.

Close not thine eyes, nor lose thy sight of Dorje1; Mara's arrows ever smite the man who has not reached Viraga.2

Beware of trembling. 'Neath the breath of fear the key of Kshanti rusty grows: the rusty key refuseth to unlock.

The more thou dost advance, the more thy feet pitfalls will meet. The Path that leadeth on, is lighted by one fire - the light of daring, burning in the heart. The more one dares, the more he shall obtain. The more he fears, the more that light shall pale - and that alone can guide.


Footnote:
1Dorje is the Sanskrit Varja, a weapon or instrument in the hands of some gods (The Tibetan Dragshed, the Devas who protect men), and is regarded as having the same Occult power of repelling evil influences by purifying the air as Ozone in chemistry. It is also a Mudra, a gesture and posture used in sitting for meditation. It is, in short, a symbol of power over invisible evil influences, whether as a posture or a talisman. The Bohns or Dugpas, however, having appropriated the symbol, misuse it for purposes of Black Magic. With the "Yellow Caps," or Gelugpas, it is a symbol of power, as the Cross is with the Christians, while it is in no way more "superstitious." With the Dugpas, it is, like the double triangle reversed, the sign of sorcery.
2Viraga is the feeling of absolute indefference to the objective universe, to pleasure and to pain. "Disgust" does not express its meaning, yet it is akin to it.

Voice of the Silence, page 59


 
 

For as the lingering sunbeam, that on the top of some tall mountain shines, is followed by black night when out it fades, so is heart-light. When out it goes, a dark and threatening shade will fall from thine own heart upon the Path and root thy feet in terror to the spot.

Beware, Disciple, of that lethal shade. No light that shines from Spirit can dispel the darkness of the nether Soul, unless all selfish thought has fled therefrom, and that the pilgrim saith: "I have renounced this passing frame; I have destroyed the cause; the shadows cast can, as effects no longer be". For now the last great fight, the final war between the Higher and the Lower Self, hath taken place. Behold the very battlefield is now engulfed in the great war, and is no more.

But once that thou has passed the gate of Kshanti step the third is taken. Thy body is thy slave. Now, for the fourth prepare, the Portal of temptations which do ensnare the inner man.

Ere thou canst near that goal, before thine

Voice of the Silence, page 60


 
 

hand is lifted to upraise the fourth gate's latch, thou must have mastered all the mental changes in thy Self, and slain the army of the thought sensations that, subtle and insidious, creep unasked within the Soul's bright shine.

If thou woulds't not be slain by them, then must thou harmless make thy own creation, the children of thy thoughts, unseen, impalpable, that swarm round humankind, the progeny and heirs to man and his terrestrial spoils. Thou hast to study the voidness of the seeming full, the fulness of the seeming void. O fearless Aspirant, look deep within the well of thine own heart, and answer. Knowest thou of Self the powers, O thou perceiver of external shadows?

If thou dost not - then art thou lost.

For, on Path fourth, the lightest breeze of passion or desire will stir the steady light upon the pure white walls of Soul. The smallest wave of longing or regret for Maya's gifts illusive, along Antaskarana - the path that lies between thy Spirit and thy self, the hightway of sensation,

Voice of the Silence, page 61


 
 

the rude arousers of Ahankara1 - a thought as fleeting as the lightning flash will make thee thy three prizes forfeit - the prizes thou hast won.

For know, that the ETERNAL knows no change.

"The eight dire miseries forsake for evermore; if not, to wisdom, sure, thou canst not come, nor yet to liberation", saith the great Lord, the Tathagata of perfection, "he who has followed in the footsteps of his predecessors".2

Stern and exacting is the virtue of Viragas. If thou its Path would'st master, thou must keep thy mind and thy perceptions far freer than before from killing action.

Thou hast to saturate thyself with pure Alaya, become as one with Nature's Soul-Thought. At one with it thou art invincible; in separation, thou becomest the playground of Samvritti,3 origin of all the world's delusions.


Footnote:
1Ashankara - the "I" or feeling of one's personality, the "I-amness."
2"One who walks in the steps of his predecessors" or "those who came before him," is the true meaning of the name Tathagata
3Samvritti is that one of the two truths which demonstrates the illusive character or emptiness of all things. It is relative truth in this case. The Mahayana school teaches the difference between these two truths -Paramarthasatya and Samvrittisatya (Satya "truth"). This is the bone of contention between the Madhyanmikas and the Yogacharyas, the former denying and the latter affirming that every object exists owing to a previous cause or by a concatenation. The Madhyamikas are the great Nihilists and Deniers, for whom everythig is parikalpita, an illusion and an error in the world of thought and the subjective, as much as in the objective universe. The Yogacharyas are the great spiritualists. Samvritti, therefore, as only relative truth, is the origin of all illusion.

Voice of the Silence, page 62


 
 

All is impermanent in man except the pure bright essence of Alaya. Man is it crystal ray; a beam of light immaculate within, a form of clay material upon the lower surface. That beam is thy life-guide and thy true Self, the Watcher and the silent Thinker, the victim of thy lower Self. Thy Soul cannot be hurt but through thy erring body; control and master both, and thou art safe when crossing to the nearing "Gate of Balance".

Be of good cheer, O daring pilgrim "to the other shore". Heed not the whisperings of Mara's hosts; wave off the tempters, those ill-natured Sprites, the jealous Lhamayin1 in endless space.


Footnote:
1Llamayin are elementals and evil spirits adverse to men, and their enemies.

Voice of the Silence, page 63


 
 

Hold firm! Thou nearest now the middle Portal, the gate of Woe, with its ten thousand snares.

Have mastery o'er thy thoughts, O striver for perfection, if thou would'st cross its threshold.

Have mastery o'er thy soul, O seeker after truths undying, if thou would'st reach the goal.

Thy Soul-gaze centre on the One Pure Light, the Light that is free from affection, and use thy golden Key. . . . . . .

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

The dreary task is done, thy labor well-nigh o'er. The wide abyss that gaped to swallow thee is almost spanned. . . . . . . . .

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Thou hast now crossed the moat that circles round the gate of human passions. Thou hast now conquered Mara and his furious host.

Thou hast removed pollution from thine heart and bled it from impure desire. But, O

Voice of the Silence, page 64


 
 

thou glorious combatant, thy task is not yet done. Build high, Lanoo, the wall that shall hedge in the Holy Isle,1 the dam that will protect thy mind from pride and satisfaction at thoughts of the great feat achieved.

A sense of pride would mar the work. Aye, build it strong, lest the fierce rush of battling waves, that mount and beat its shore from out the great World Maya's Ocean, swallow up the pilgrim and the isle - yea, even when the victory's achieved.

Thine "Isle" is the deer, thy thoughts the hounds that weary and pursue his progress to the stream of Life. Woe to the deer that is o'ertaken by the barking fiends before he reach the Vale of Refuge - Dhyana-Marga, "path of pure knowledge" named.

Ere thou canst settle in Dhyana-Marga2 and call it thine, thy Soul has to become as the ripe mango fruit: as soft and sweet as its bright


Footnote:
1The Higher Ego, or Thinking Self.
2Dhyana-Marga is the "Path of Dhyana," literally; or the Path of pure knowledge, of Paramartha or (Sanskrit) Svasamvedana, "the self-evident or self-analyzing reflection."

Voice of the Silence, page 65


 
 

golden pulp for others' woes, as hard as that fruit's stone for thine own throes and sorrows, O Conqueror of Weal and Woe.

Make hard thy Soul against the snares of Self; deserve for it the name of "Diamond-Soul".1

For, as the diamond buried deep within the throbbing heart of earth can never mirror back the earthly lights, so are thy mind and Soul; plunged in Dhyana-Marga, these must mirror nought of Maya's realm illusive.

When thou hast reached that state, the Portals that thou hast to conquer on the Path fling open wide their gates to let thee pass, and Nature's strongest mights possess no power to stay thy course. Thou wilt be master of the sevenfold Path; but not till then, O candidate for trials passing speech.

Till then, a task far harder still awaits thee: thou hast to feel thyself ALL-THOUGHT, and yet exile all thoughts from out thy Soul.


Footnote:
1See page 28, footnote No. 1. "Diamond-Soul" or Vajradhara presides over the Dhyani Buddhas.

Voice of the Silence, page 66


 
 

Thou hast to reach that fixity of mind in which no breeze, however strong, can waft an earthly thought within. Thus purified, the shrine must of all action, sound, or earthly light be void; e'en as the butterfly, o'ertaken by the frost, falls lifeless at the threshold - so must all earthly thoughts fall dead before the fane.

Behold it written:

"Ere the gold flame can burn with steady light, the lamp must stand well guarded in a spot free from all wind".1 Exposed to shifting breeze, the jet will flicker and the quivering flame cast shades deceptive, dark and ever-changing, on the Soul's white shrine.

And then, O thou pursuer of the truth, thy Mind-Soul will become as a mad elephant, that rages in the jungle. Mistaking forest trees for living foes, he perishes in his attempts to kill the ever-shifting shadows dancing on the wall of sunlit rocks.

Beware, lest in the care of Self thy Soul should lose her foothold on the soil of Deva-knowledge.


Footnote:
1Bhagavad-Gita

Voice of the Silence, page 67


 
 

Beware, lest in forgetting SELF, thy Soul lose o'er its trembling mind control, and forfeit thus the due fruition of its conquests.

Beware of change! For change is thy great foe. This change will fight thee off, and throw thee back, out of the Path thou treadest, deep into viscous swamps of doubt.

Prepare, and be forewarned in time. If thou hast tried and failed, O dauntless fighter, yet lose not courage: fight on, and to the charge return again and yet again.

The fearless warrior, his precious life-blood oozing from his wide and gaping wounds, will still attack the foe, drive him from out his stronghold, vanquish him, ere he himself expires. Act then, all ye who fail and suffer, act like him; and from the stronghold of your Soul chase all your foes away - ambition, anger, hatred, e'en to the shadow of desire - when even you have failed. . .

Remember, thou that fightest for man's

Voice of the Silence, page 68


 
 

liberation,1 each failure is success, and each sincere attempt wins its reward in time. The holy germs that sprout and grow unseen in the disciple's soul, their stalks wax strong at each new trial, they bend like reeds but never break, nor can they e'er be lost. But when the hour has struck they blossom forth.2

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

But if thou cams't prepared, then have no fear.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Henceforth thy way is clear right through the Virya gate, the fifth one of the Seven Portals.


Footnote:
1This is an allusion to a well-known belief in the East (as in the West, too, for the matter of that) that every additional Buddha or Saint is a new soldier in the army of those who work for the liberation or salvation of mankind. In Northern Buddhist countries, where the doctrine of Nirmanakayas - those Bodhisattvas who renounce well-earned Nirvana or the Dharmakaya vesture (both of which shut them out forever from the world of men) in order to invisibly assist mankind and lead it finally to Paranirvana - is taught, every new Bodhisattva or initiated great Adept, is called the "liberator of mankind." The statement made by Schlagintweit in his Buddhism in the Tibet to the effect that Prulpai Ku or Nirmanakaya is "the body in which the Buddhas or Bodhisattvas appear upon the earth to teach men" is absurdly inaccurate and explains nothing.
2A reference to human passions and sins which are slaughtered during the trials of the novitiate, and serve as well-fertilized soil in which "holy germs" or seeds of transcendental virtues may germinate. Pre-existing or innate virtues, talents or gifts are regarded as having been acquired in a previous birth. Genius is without exception a talent or aptitude brought from another birth.

Voice of the Silence, page 69


 
 

Thou art now on the way that leadeth to the Dhyana haven, the sixth, the Bodhi Portal.

The Dhyana gate is like an alabaster vase, white and transparent; within there burns a steady golden fire, the flame of Prajna that radiates from Atma.

Thou are that vase.

Thou hast estranged thyself from objects of the senses, travelled on the "Path of seeing", on the "Path of hearing", and standest in the light of Knowledge. Thou hast now reached Titiksha state.1

O Narjol, thou art safe.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Know, Conqueror of Sins, once that a Sowanee2 hath cross'd the seventh Portal, all Nature thrills with joyous awe and feels subdued. The


Footnote:
1Titiksha is the fifth state of Raja Yoga - one of the supreme indifference; submission if necessary, to what is called "pleasures and pains for all," but deriving neither pleasure nor pain from such submission - in short, the becoming physically, mentally, and morally indifferent and insensible to either pleasure or pain.
2Sowanee is one who practices Sowan, the first path in Dhyana, a Srotapatti.

Voice of the Silence, page 70


 
 

silver star now twinkles out the news to the night-blossoms, the streamlet to the pebbles ripples out the tale; dark ocean waves will roar it to the rocks surf-bound, scent-laden breezes sing it to the vales, and stately pines mysteriously whisper: "A Master has arisen, A MASTER OF THE DAY".1

He standeth now like a white pillar to the west, upon whose face the rising Sun of thought eternal poureth forth its first most glorious waves. His mind, like a becalmed and boundless ocean, spreadeth out in shoreless space. He holdeth life and death in his strong hand.

Yea, he is mighty. The living power made free in him, that power which is HIMSELF, can raise the tabernacle of illusion high above the Gods, above great Brahm and Indra. Now he shall surely reach his great reward!

Shall he not use the gifts which it confers for his own rest and bliss, his well-earn'd weal and glory - he, the subduer of the Great Delusion?


Footnote:
1"Day" means here a whole Manvantara, a period of incalculable duration.

Voice of the Silence, page 71


 
 

Nay, O thou candidate for Nature's hidden lore! If one would follow in the steps of holy Tathagata, those gifts and powers are not for Self.

Would'st thou thus dam the waters born on Sumeru?1 Shalt thou divert the stream for thine own sake, or send it back to its prime source along the crests of cycles?

If thou would'st have that stream of hard-earn'd knowledge, of Wisdom heaven-born, remain sweet running waters, thou should'st not leave it to become a stagnant pond.

Know, if of Amitabha, the "Boundless Age", thou would'st become co-workers, then must thou shed the light acquired, like to the Bodhisattvas twain,2 upon the span of all three worlds.3


Footnote:
1Mount Meru, the sacred mountain of the Gods.
2In the Northern Buddhist symbology, Amitabha or "Boundless Space" (Parabrahman) is said to have in his paradise two Boddhisattvas - Kwan-shi-yin and Tashishi - who ever radiate light over the three worlds, where they lived, including our own (vide footnote No. 3 below), in order to help with this light (of knowledge) in the instruction of Yogis, who will, in their turn, save men. Their exalted position in Amitabha's realm is due to deeds of mercy performed by the two, as such Yogis, when on earth, says the allegory.
3These three worlds are the three planes of being, the terrestrial, astral and the spiritual.

Voice of the Silence, page 72


 
 

Know that the stream of superhuman knowledge and the Deva-Wisdom thou hast won, must, from thyself, the channel of Alaya, be poured forth into another bed.

Know, O Narjol, thou of the Secret Path, its pure fresh waters must be used to sweeter make the Ocean's bitter waves - that mighty sea of sorrow formed of the tears of men.

Alas! when once thou hast become like the fix'd star in the highest heavens, that bright celestial orb must shine from out the spatial depths for all - save for itself; give light to all, but take from none.

Alas! when once thou hast become like the pure snow in mountain vales, cold and unfeeling to the touch, warm and protective to the seed that sleepeth deep beneath its bosom - 'tis now that snow which must receive the biting frost, the northern blasts, thus shielding from their sharp and cruel tooth the earth that holds the promised harvest, the harvest that will feed the hungry.

Voice of the Silence, page 73


 
 

Self-doomed to live through future Kalpas,1 unthanked and unperceived by men; wedged as a stone with countless other stones which form the "Guardian Wall",2 such is thy future if the seventh Gate thou passest. Built by the hands of many Masters of Compassion, raised by their tortures, by their blood cemented, it shields mankind, since man is man, protecting it from further and far greater misery and sorrow.

Withal man sees it not, will not perceive it, nor will he heed the word of Wisdom . . . for he knows it not.

But thou hast heard it, thou knowest all, O thou of eager, guileless Soul . . . and thou must choose. Then hearken yet again.

On Sowan's Path, O Srotapatti,3 thou art secure. Aye, on that Marga4 where nought but


Footnote:
1Cycles of ages.
2The "Guardian Wall" or the "Wall of Protection." It is taught that the accumulated efforts of long generations of Yogis, Saints and Adepts, especially of the Nirmanakayas, have created so to say, a wall of protection around mankind, which wall shields mankind invisibly from still worse evils.
3Sowan and Srotapatti are synomymous terms.
4Marga - "Path."

Voice of the Silence, page 74


 
 

darkness meets the weary pilgrim, where torn by thorns the hands drip blood, the feet are cut by sharp, unyielding flints, and Mara wields his strongest arms - there lies a great reward immediately beyond.

Calm and unmoved the Pilgrim glideth up the stream that to Nirvana leads. He knoweth that the more his feet will bleed, the whiter will himself be washed. He knoweth well that after seven short and fleeting births Nirvana will be his . . .

Such is the Dhyana Path, the haven of the Yogi, the blessed goal that Srotapattis crave.

Not so when he hath crossed and won the Aryahata Path.1

There Klesha2 is destroyed for ever, Tanha's3 roots torn out. But stay, Disciple . . . Yet one word. Canst thou destroy divine COMPASSION? Compassion is no attribute. It is the Law


Footnote:
1From the Sanskrit Arhat or Arhan.
2Klesha is the love of pleasure or of worldly enjoyment, evil or good.
3Tanha, the will to live, that which causes rebirth.

Voice of the Silence, page 75


 
 

of LAWS - eternal Harmony, Alaya's SELF; a shoreless universal essence, the light of everlasing Right, and fitness of all things, the law of Love eternal.

The more thou dost become at one with it, thy being melted in its BEING, the more thy Soul unites with that which IS, the more thou wilt become COMPASSION ABSOLUTE.1

Such is the Arya Path, Path of the Buddhas of perfection.

Withal, what mean the sacred scrolls which make thee say?

"OM! I believe it is not all the Arhats that get of the Nirvanic Path the sweet fruition".

"OM! I believe that the Nirvana-Dharma is entered not by all the Buddhas".2


Footnote:
1This "compassion" must not be regarded in the same light as "God, the divine love" of the Theists. Compassion stands here as an abstract, impersonal law, whose nature, being absolute Harmony is thrown into confusion by discord, suffering and sin.
2Thegpa Chenpoido "Mahayana Sutra," "Invocations to the Buddhas of Confession." Part I, iv. In the Northern Buddhist phraseology all the great Arhats, Adepts and Saints are called Buddhas.

Voice of the Silence, page 76


 
 

Yea; on the Arya Path thou art no more Srotapatti thou art a Bodhisattva.1 The stream is cross'd. 'Tis true thou hast a right to Dharmakaya vesture; but Sambhogakaya is greater than a Nirvanee, and greater still is a Nirmanakaya - the Buddha of Compassion.2


Footnote:
1A Bodhisattva is, in the hierarchy, less than a "perfect Buddha." In the exoteric parlance these two are very much confused. Yet the innate and right popular perception, owing to that self-sacrifice, has placed a Bodhisattva higher in its reverence than a Buddha.
2This same popular reverence calls "Buddhas of Compassion" those Bodhisattvas who, having reached the rank of an Arhat (i.e., have completed the fourth or seventh Path), refuse to pass into Nirvanic state or "don the Dharmakaya robe and cross to the other shore," as it would then become beyond their power to assist men even so little as Karma permits. They prefer to remain invisibly (in Spirit, so to speak) in the world, and contribute toward man's salvation by influencing them to follow the Good Law, i.e., lead them on the Path of Righteousness. It is the part of the exoteric Northern Buddhism to honor all such great characters as Saints, and to offer even prayers to them, as the Greeks and Catholics do to their Saints and Patrons; on the other hand, the Esoteric teachings countenance no such thing. There is a great difference between the two teachings. The exoteric layman hardly knows the real meaning of the word Nirmanakaya - hence the confusion and inadequate explanations of the Orientalists. for example, Schlagintweit believes that Nirmanakaya-body means the physical form assumed by the Buddhas when they incarnate on earth - "the least sublime of their earthly encumbrances" (vide Buddhism in Tibet) - and he proceeds to give an entirely false view on the subject. The real teaching is, however this:
The three Buddhic bodies or forms are styled:
1. Nirmanakaya
2. Sambhogakaya
3. Dharmakaya
The first is that ethereal form which one would assume when leaving his physical he would appear in his astral body - having in addition all the knowledge of an Adept. The Bodhisattva develops it in himself as he proceeds on the Path. Having reached the goal and refused its fruition, he remains on Earth, as an Adept; and when he dies, instead of going into Nirvana, he remains in that glorious body he has woven for himself, invisible to uninitiated mankind, to watch over and protect it.
Sambhogakaya is the same, but with the additional lustre of "three perfections," one of which is entire obliteration of all earthly concerns.
The Dharmakaya body is that of a complete Buddha, i.e., no body at all, but an ideal breath: Consciousness merged in the Universal Consciousness, or Soul devoid of every attribute. Once a Dharmakaya, an Adept or Buddha leaves behind every possible relation with, or thought for this earth. Thus, to be enabled to help humanity, an Adept who has won the right to Nirvana, "renounces the Dharmakaya body" in mystic parlance; keeps, of the Sambhogakaya, only the great and complete knowledge, and remains in his Nirmanakaya body. The Esoteric School teaches that Gautama Buddha, with several of his Arhats, is such a Nirmanakaya, higher than whom, on account of the great renunciation and sacrifice for mankind, there is none known.

Voice of the Silence, page 77


 
 

Now bend thy head and listen well, O Bodhisattva - Compassion speaks and saith: "Can there be bliss when all that lives must suffer? Shalt thou be saved and hear the whole world cry?"

Now thou hast heard that which was said.

Thou shalt attain the seventh step and cross the gate of final knowledge, but only to wed woe - if thou would'st be Tathagata, follow upon thy predecessor's steps, remain unselfish till the endless end.

Thou art enlightened - choose thy way.

Voice of the Silence, page 78


 
 

Behold, the mellow light that floods the Eastern sky. In signs of praise both heaven and earth unite. And from the four-fold manifested Powers a chant of love ariseth, both from the flaming Fire and flowing Water, and from sweet-smelling Earth and rushing Wind.

Hark! . . . from the deep unfathomable vortex of that golden light in which the Victor bathes, ALL NATURE'S wordless voice is thousand tones ariseth to proclaim:

JOY UNTO YE, O MEN OF MYALBA.1

A PILGRIM HATH RETURNED BACK "FROM THE OTHER SHORE".

A NEW ARHAN2 IS BORN.

PEACE TO ALL BEINGS.3


Footnote:
1Myalba is our earth - pertinently called "Hell," and the greatest of all Hells, by the Esoteric School. The Esoteric Doctrine knows of no hell, or place of punishment, other than a man-bearing planet or earth. Avitchi is a state, and not a locality.
2Meaning that a new and additional Saviour of mankind is born who will lead men to final Nirvana, i.e., after the end of the life-cycle.
3This is one of the variations of the formula that invariably follows every Treatise Invocation or Instruction. "Peace to all beings," "Blessings on all that lives," etc., etc.

Voice of the Silence, page 79

 

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