"METAPHYSICS: A Branch of Philosophy That Deals With 'First Cause' and 'The Nature of Being'"

……CURRENT FEATURE ARTICLE ……"THE PATH"

THE PATH
by Gary Barnhart
a student of Theosophy and the Teachings of H.P. Blavatsky



Fellow friends and students,

The Dali Lama, HP Blavatsky, Gautama Buddha, have stated various things about what we are calling "the path". These three, among others, have placed importance on the "message" or "dharma" and the importance of finding a trustworthy teacher.
To quote the Dalai Lama, "The importance of finding a trustworthy teacher cannot be overemphasized ....." In his little book, "The Way To Freedom", he devotes a whole chapter to the importance of an appropriate teacher and the characteristics of the appropriate teacher.

As we all surely know from experience as we progress in our education, in this case, what may simple be called philosophy or theosophy, or even dharma, we begin to recognize "levels" of teachers, just as we also become more aware of levels of students from their knowledge and experience and shared wisdom.
The "path" is a growth within ourselves. We learn from others as guides and mentors, that is we use their "testimony", their message, their flashlight of wisdom,....until...we become the experience of that wisdom.

Look closely and remember always the wisdom found in the "Yoga Sutras {verses] Of Patanjali" about the way we learn. This is such a powerful grouping of teaching. Part one,verse 5, "The valid means of judgment {read discernment] are direct perception, inference, and verbal testimony."

Regarding ones path, selecting a teacher is a selecting of who and what, another's verbal testimony, usually relayed by words. For many of us this is found in teachers writings, their messages left to us, our source material, the teachers testimony or teachings. As we progress on our paths we begin to discern, which teachers and what teaching, we can learn from. One of these teacher guides helps us along a part of the path, and as we reach another level, we usually find it necessary to seek help from a higher or more appropriate level teacher or guide.

Now...most of this may appear very obvious to each of us....but if it is....why is it not being said? Shall I repeat...Why is this not being acknowledged?

All of this goes to the crux of the matter about the focus, purpose, and teachings utilized within this discussion site. Simply put,
besides building bridges of friendship, networks, and ties between us, we are in a certain level of the library of life, of both learning from the testimony of others and from our own experiences.

An example, until a person experiences the recall or memory of prior lives, we learn from the testimony of others the meaning of re-embodiment or reincarnation. The former is a learning by direct experience or perception, whereas the latter is learning by both testimony and inference or reasoning.

Now, the more we learn, and then put into practice the great teachings, the more we find by our own experience the truth {or not], within teachings. This includes examining our own thinking abilities and our life relationships. As we progress, we come to more and more easily recognize higher level teachers ( or guides if you prefer), so much so, that we wish to narrow our focus to the best we can recognize. I call this, going to the highest "sources" we can recognize and find. Some of these "sources" are listed within the Blavatsky Net site in the form of their writings, their messages, their teachings.

Those sources get us within the same area, the same bookshelf or stack, within the library of great teachings. We also bring into our network, other great teachings and this is also recognized within our framework of discovery and sharing. Some of these added teachers and their messages are complimentary and some frankly, or boldly stated, may not fit our individual levels of learning and experience.
What becomes obvious over time is that we tend to find the best level of source which fits our individual needs.
As also obvious, one hopes, is that for many of us as we progress along the path, again and again we tend towards attempting to select the highest and best and closest to the deepest and/or highest truth "sources" we can find.

Once these "highest & best" truth sources are found, our function as students is in exploring them as best we can.
Do I want to go to another section of the library, when I have found the highest and best section and selection ?.... No thank you!

Now, is there another level of "sources"? That is, is there a level beyond the "teaching sources"? Yes, there is. This is the level of no longer relying on exterior teachings or sources. This is the level of direct experience and even moving our consciousness to a new level of learning. These new levels of consciousness and learning take place within us.
The Yoga Sutras {attributed to Patanjali] and The Voice of Silence come from those levels. These are even guides to accompany us on our journey within.

Those sources, along with The Bahagavad-Gita, are guide books for our inner exploration, and learning. There are other guide books as well, but these take additional time to find and explore, and some of these are simple not up to the level of those mentioned. Moving on,...eventual we reach the plateau of learning beyond what we normally think of as empirical knowledge.

At that newer level, the Teachings become proven, experienced, and verified by inner experience, which is in many cases is not provable to others except to students on their same level or even some even more advanced. This is also a level at which fellow chelas and helpers learn to keep their mouths shut about their experiences and just help those that want help and are not to full of themselves. Helpers at this level tend to seek to help those that can become childlike, become help-able.

Point is, theosophical students and chelas need to chose with careful discernment, which teachers and messages they wish to spend their precious lives with.

sincerely and in gratitude to HP Blavatsky and Judge and A few precious others,
Gary B

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