Salvation from Death

We come now to the second phase of our study of the final words of Rule XI. We have dealt with salvation from the dangers incident to the creation of thought-forms by a human being who has learnt, or is learning, to create on the mental plane. Much could have been said from the standpoint of the inability of the majority of students to think with clarity. Clear thinking involves capacity to dissociate oneself, temporarily at least, from all reactions and activities of an emotional nature. As long as the astral body is in a state of restless movement, and its moods and feelings, its desires and emotions are powerful enough to attract attention, positive pure thought processes are not possible. Until the time comes when there is a more general appreciation of the value of concentration and of meditation, and until the nature of the mind and its modifications are more universally understood, any further teaching on the subject would be futile.

In these Instructions I have sought to give an indication of the first steps in esoteric psychology, and have dealt primarily with the nature and mode of training of the astral body. Later on in this century, the psychology of the mind, its nature and modifications may be handled in more detail. But the time is not yet.

Our subject now is salvation from the body nature through the process of death.

Two things must be borne in mind as we seek to study the means of this salvation:

  • First, by the body nature I mean the integrated personality, or the human equipment of physical body, vital or etheric vehicle, the matter (or mode of being) of the desire nature, and the mind stuff. These constitute the sheaths or outer forms of the incarnated soul. The consciousness aspect is sometimes focused in one and sometimes in another, or is identified with the form or with the soul. The average man works with facility and self-consciousness in the physical and astral bodies. The intelligent and highly evolved man has added to these two the conscious control of his mental apparatus, though only in certain of its aspects, such as the memorizing or analyzing faculties. He has also, in some cases, succeeded in unifying these three into a consciously functioning personality. The aspirant is beginning to understand something of the principle of life which is animating the personality, whilst the disciple is utilizing all three, because he has coordinated or aligned the soul, the mind, and the brain and is therefore beginning to work with his subjective apparatus or energy aspects.
  • Secondly, this salvation is brought about through a right understanding of the mystical experience we call death. This is to be our theme, and the subject is so immense that I can only indicate certain lines along which the aspirant may think, and posit certain premises which he can later elaborate. We shall confine ourselves also primarily to the death of the physical body.

Let us first of all define this mysterious process to which all forms are subject and which is frequently only the dreaded end – dreaded because it is not understood. The mind of man is so little developed that fear of the unknown, terror of the unfamiliar, and attachment to form have brought about a situation where one of the most beneficent occurrences in the life cycle of an incarnating Son of God is looked upon as something to be avoided and postponed for as long a time as possible.

Death, if we could but realize it, is one of our most practiced activities. We have died many times and shall die again and again. Death is essentially a matter of consciousness. We are conscious one moment on the physical plane, and a moment later we have withdrawn onto another plane and are actively conscious there. Just as long as our consciousness is identified with the form aspect, death will hold for us its ancient terror. Just as soon as we know ourselves to be souls, and find that we are capable of focusing our consciousness or sense of awareness in any form or on any plane at will, or in any direction within the form of God, we shall no longer know death.

Death for the average man is the cataclysmic end, involving the termination of all human relations, the cessation of all physical activity, the severing of all signs of love and of affection, and the passage (unwilling and protesting) into the unknown and the dreaded. It is analogous to leaving a lighted and a warmed room, friendly and familiar, where our loved ones are assembled, and going out into the cold and dark night, alone and terror stricken, hoping for the best and sure of nothing.

But people are apt to forget that every night, in the hours of sleep, we die to the physical plane and are alive and functioning elsewhere. They forget that they have already achieved facility in leaving the physical body; because they cannot as yet bring back into the physical brain consciousness the recollection of that passing out, and of the subsequent interval of active living, they fail to relate death and sleep. Death, after all, is only a longer interval in the life of physical plane functioning; one has only “gone abroad” for a longer period. But the process of daily sleep and the process of occasional dying are identical, with the one difference that in sleep the magnetic thread or current of energy along which the life force streams is preserved intact, and constitutes the path of return to the body. In death, this life thread is broken or snapped. When this has happened, the conscious entity cannot return to the dense physical body and that body, lacking the principle of coherence, then disintegrates.

It should be remembered that the purpose and will of the soul, the spiritual determination to be and to do, utilizes the thread soul, the sutratma, the life current, as its means of expression in form. This life current differentiates into two currents or two threads when it reaches the body, and is “anchored”, if I might so express it, in two locations in that body. This is symbolic of the differentiations of Atma, or Spirit, into its two reflections, soul and body. The soul, or consciousness aspect, that which makes a human being a rational, thinking entity, is “anchored” by one aspect of this thread soul to a “seat” in the brain, found in the region of the pineal gland. The other aspect of the life which animates every atom of the body and which constitutes the principle of coherence or of integration, finds its way to the heart and is focused or “anchored” there. From these two points, the spiritual man seeks to control the mechanism. Thus functioning on the physical plane becomes possible, and objective existence becomes a temporary mode of expression. The soul, seated in the brain, makes man an intelligent rational entity, self-conscious and self-directing; he is aware in varying degree of the world in which he lives, according to the point in evolution and the consequent development of the mechanism. That mechanism is triple in expression. There are first of all the nadis and the seven centers of force; then the nervous system in its three divisions: cerebro-spinal, sympathetic, and peripheral; and then there is the endocrine system, which might be regarded as the densest aspect or externalization of the other two.

The soul, seated in the heart, is the life principle, the principle of self-determination, the central nucleus of positive energy by means of which all the atoms of the body are held in their right place and subordinated to the “will-to-be” of the soul. This principle of life utilizes the blood stream as its mode of expression and as its controlling agency, and through the close relation of the endocrine system to the blood stream, we have the two aspects of soul activity brought together in order to make man a living, conscious, functioning entity, governed by the soul, and expressing the purpose of the soul in all the activities of daily living.

Death, therefore, is literally the withdrawal from the heart and from the head of these two streams of energy, producing consequently, complete loss of consciousness and disintegration of the body. Death differs from sleep in that both streams of energy are withdrawn. In sleep only the thread of energy, which is anchored in the brain is withdrawn, and when this happens the man becomes unconscious. By this we mean that his consciousness or sense of awareness is focused elsewhere. His attention is no longer directed towards things tangible and physical but is turned upon another world of being and becomes centered in another apparatus or mechanism. In death, both the threads are withdrawn or unified in the life thread. Vitality ceases to penetrate through the medium of the blood stream and the heart fails to function just as the brain fails to record, and thus silence settles down.The house is empty. Activity ceases except that amazing and immediate activity which is the prerogative of matter itself and which expresses itself in the process of decomposition. From certain aspects, therefore, that process indicates man’s unity with everything that is material; it demonstrates that he is part of nature itself and by nature we mean the body of the one life in whom “we live and move and have our being”. In those three words – living, moving and being – we have the entire story.

  • Being is awareness, self-consciousness and self-expression and of this man’s head and brain are the exoteric symbols.
  • Living is energy, desire in form, coherence and adhesion to an idea and of this the heart and the blood are the exoteric symbols.
  • Moving indicates the integration and response of the existing, aware, living entity into the universal activity, and of this the stomach, pancreas and liver are the symbols.

It is interesting, though incidental to our subject, to bear in mind that in cases of imbecility and idiocy and in that stage of old age which we call senile decay, the thread which is anchored in the brain is withdrawn, whilst that which conveys the life impulse or urge remains still anchored in the heart. There is life but no intelligent awareness; there is movement but no intelligent direction; in the case of senile decay, when there has been a high grade apparatus utilized in life, there may be the appearance of intelligent functioning but that is an illusion due to old habit and to old established rhythm but not to coordinated coherent purpose.

It must be noted also that death is, therefore, undertaken at the direction of the ego, {soul} no matter how unaware a human being may be of that direction. The process works automatically with the majority, for when the soul withdraws its attention the inevitable reaction on the physical plane is death, either by the abstraction of the dual threads of life and reason energy, or by the abstraction of the thread of energy which is qualified by mentality, leaving the life stream still functioning through the heart but no intelligent awareness. The soul is engaged elsewhere and occupied on its own plane with its own affairs.

In the case of highly developed human beings we often find a sense of prevision as to the death period; this is incident upon egoic contact and awareness of the wishes of the ego. It involves sometimes a knowledge of the very day of death, coupled to a preservation of self-determination up to the final moment of withdrawal. In the case of initiates there is much more than this. There is an intelligent understanding of the laws of abstraction and this enables the one who is making the transition to withdraw consciously and in full waking awareness out of the physical body and so to function on the astral plane. This involves the preservation of continuity of consciousness so that no hiatus occurs between the sense of awareness on the physical plane and that of the after death state. The man knows himself to be as he was before, though without an apparatus whereby he can contact the physical plane. He remains aware of the states of feeling and of the thoughts of those he loves, though he cannot perceive or contact the dense physical vehicle. He can communicate with them on the astral plane or telepathically through the mind if they and he are en rapport, but communication that involves the use of the five physical senses of perception lies necessarily out of his reach. It is useful to remember, however, that astrally and mentally the interplay can be closer and more sensitive than ever before for he is freed of the handicap of the physical body. Two things, however, militate against this interplay: one is the grief and violent emotional upset of those left behind and, in the case of the average human being, the other is the man’s own ignorance and bewilderment as he stands faced by what are to him new conditions, though they are really old conditions, if he could but realize it. Once men have lost the fear of death and have established an understanding of the after death world which is not based on hallucination and hysteria or on the conclusions (oft unintelligent) of the average medium, who speaks under the control of his own thought-form (built by himself and the circle of sitters), we shall have the process of death properly controlled. The condition of those left behind will be carefully handled so that there is no loss of relationship and no false expenditure of energy.

There is a big difference now between the scientific method of bringing people into incarnation and the perfectly blind and oft frightened and surely ignorant way in which we usher them out of incarnation. I seek today to open the door in the occident to a newer and more scientific method of handling the process of dying, and let me make myself perfectly clear. What I have to say in no way abrogates modern medical science with its palliatives and skill. All I plead for is a sane approach to death; all I seek to make is a suggestion that when pain has worn itself out and weakness has supervened, the dying person be permitted to prepare himself, even if apparently unconscious, for the great transition. Forget not that it takes strength and a strong hold on the nervous apparatus to produce pain. Is it impossible to conceive of a time when the act of dying will be a triumphant finale of life? Is it impossible to vision the time when the hours spent on the death bed may be but a glorious prelude to a conscious exit? When the fact that the man is to discard the handicap of the physical sheath may be for him and those around him the long waited for and joyous consummation? Can you not visualize the time when instead of tears and fear and the refusal to recognize the inevitable, the dying person and his friends would mutually agree on the hour and that nothing but happiness would characterize the passing? That in the minds of those left behind the thought of sorrow will not enter and death beds will be regarded as happier occasions than births and marriages? I tell you, that before so very long this will be deeply so for the intelligent of the race, and little by little for all.

You say there are as yet only beliefs as to immortality and no sure evidences. In the accumulation of testimony, in the inner assurances of the human heart, in the fact of belief in eternal persistence as an idea in the minds of men lies sure indication. But indication will give place to conviction and knowledge before another hundred years has elapsed, for an event will take place and a revelation be given to the race which will turn hope into certainty and belief into knowledge. In the meantime, let a new attitude to death be cultivated and a new science of death be inaugurated. Let it cease to be the one thing we cannot control and which inevitably defeats us and let us begin to control our passing over to the other side, and to understand somewhat the technique of transition.

Before I take up this subject in greater detail I would like to make reference to the “web in the brain”, which is intact for the majority but is non-existent for the illumined seer.

In the human body, as you know, we have an underlying, interpenetrating vital body which is the counterpart of the physical, which is larger than the physical and which we call the etheric body or double. It is an energy body and is composed of force centers and nadis or force threads. These underlie or are the counterparts of the nervous apparatus – the nerves and the nerve ganglia. In two places in the human vital body there are orifices of exit for the life force. One opening is in the solar plexus and the other is in the brain at the topof the head. Protecting both is a closely woven web of etheric matter, composed of interlacing strands of life energy.

{This is elsewhere referred to as the luminous cocoon}

During the process of death, the pressure of the life energy beating against the web produces eventually a puncturing or opening. Out of this the life force pours as the potency of the abstracting influence of the soul increases. In the case of animals, of infants and of men and women who are polarized entirely in the physical and astral bodies, the door of exit is the solar plexus and it is that web which is punctured, thus permitting the passing out. In the case of mental types, of the more highly evolved human units, it is the web at the top of the head in the region of the fontanel which is ruptured, thus again permitting the exit of the thinking rational being.

In psychics and in the case of mediums and lower seers (clairvoyant and clairaudient people) the solar plexus web is permanently ruptured early in life and easily therefore they pass in or out of the body, going into trance, as it is called, and functioning on the astral plane. But for these types there is no continuity of consciousness and there seems no relation between their physical plane existence and the happenings which they relate whilst in trance and of which they usually remain totally unaware in the waking consciousness. The whole performance is below the diaphragm and is related primarily to animal sentient life. In the case of conscious clairvoyance and in the work of the higher psychics and seers there is no trance, obsession or mediumship. It is the web in the brain which is punctured and the opening in that region permits the inflow of light, information and inspiration; it confers also the power to pass into the state of Samadhi which is the spiritual correspondence to the trance condition of the animal nature.

In the process of death these are, therefore, the two main exits: the solar plexus for the astrally polarized, physically biased human being and therefore of the vast majority, and the head center for the mentally polarized and spiritually oriented human being. This is the first and most important fact to remember and it will easily be seen how the trend of a life tendency and the focus of the life attention determine the mode of exit at death. It can be seen also that an effort to control the astral life and the emotional nature and to orient one’s self to the mental world and to spiritual things has a momentous effect upon the phenomenal aspects of the death process.

If the student is thinking clearly, it will be apparent to him that one exit concerns the spiritual and highly evolved man, whilst the other concerns the low grade human being who has scarcely advanced beyond the animal stage. What then of the average man? A third exit is now in temporary use; just below the apex of the heart another etheric web is found covering an orifice of exit. We have, therefore, the following situation:

  1. The exit in the head, used by the intellectual type, by the disciples and initiates of the world.
  2. The exit in the heart, used by the kindly, well-meaning man or woman who is a good citizen, an intelligent friend and a philanthropic worker.
  3. The exit in the region of the solar plexus, used by the emotional, unintelligent, unthinking man and by those whose animal nature is strong.

This is the first point in the new information which will slowly become common knowledge in the West during the next century. Much of it is already known by thinkers in the East and is in the nature of a first step towards a rational understanding of the death process.

The second point to be grasped is that there can be a technique of dying and a training given during life which will lead up to the utilization of that technique.

As regards the training to which a man can submit himself I will give a few hints which will be found to convey a new meaning to much work now being done by all aspirants. The Elder Brothers of the race who have guided humanity through long centuries, are now busy preparing people for the next great step to be taken. This step will bring in a continuity of consciousness which will do away with all fear of death and link the physical and astral planes in such a close relation that they will in reality constitute one plane. Just as an at-one-ment has to be brought about between the various aspects of man, so a similar unification has to take place in connection with the various aspects of the planetary life. The planes have to be at-one-ed as well as soul and body. This has already been largely accomplished between the etheric plane and the dense physical plane. Now it is being rapidly carried forward between the physical and the astral.

In the work being done by seekers in all departments of human thought and life, this unification is proceeding and in the training now suggested to earnest and sincere aspirants, there are other objectives than just the one of producing soul and body at-one-ment. No emphasis, however, is laid upon them, owing to the ability of man unduly to emphasize the wrong objectives. It might well be asked if it is possible to give a simple set of rules that could be followed now by all who seek to establish such a rhythm that life itself is not only organized and constructive, but when the moment for vacating the outer sheath arrives, there will be no problem nor difficulty. I will therefore, give you four simple rules that link up with much that all students are now doing:

  1. Learn to keep focused in the head through visualization and meditation and through the steady practice of concentration; develop the capacity to live increasingly as the king seated on the throne between the eyebrows. This is a rule that can be applied to the every day affairs of life.
  2. Learn to render heart service and not an emotional insistence on activity directed towards handling the affairs of others. This involves, prior to all such activity, the answering of two questions: – Am I rendering this service to an individual as an individual, or am I rendering it as a member of a group to a group? Is my motive an egoic impulse, or am I prompted by emotion, ambition to shine and love of being loved or admired? These two activities will result in the focusing of the life energies above the diaphragm and so negate the attractive power of the solar plexus. Hence, that center will become increasingly inactive and there will not be so much danger of puncturing the web in that locality.
  3. Learn, as you go to sleep, to withdraw the consciousness to the head. This should be practiced as a definite exercise as one falls to sleep. One should not permit oneself to drift off to sleep, but should endeavor to preserve the consciousness intact until there is a conscious passing out onto the astral plane. Relaxation, close attention, and a steady drawing upwards to the center in the head should be attempted, for until the aspirant has learned to be steadily aware of all processes in going to sleep and to preserve at the same time his positivity, there is danger in this work. The first steps must be taken with intelligence and followed for many years until facility in the work of abstraction is achieved.
  4. Record and watch all phenomena connected with the withdrawing process, whether followed in the meditation work or in going to sleep. It will be found, for instance, that many people wake with an almost painful start just as they have dropped asleep. This is due to the slipping out of the consciousness through a web which is not adequately clear and through an orifice which is partially closed. Others may hear an intensely loud snap in the region of the head. This is caused by the vital airs in the head of which we are not usually aware and is produced by an inner aural sensitivity which causes awareness of sounds always present but not usually registered. Others will see light as they fall asleep, or clouds of color, or banners and streamers of violet, all of which are etheric phenomena. These phenomena which are of no real moment, are all related to the vital body, to pranic emanations, and to the web of light.

The carrying on of this practice and the following of these four rules over a period of years will do much to facilitate the technique of the death bed, for the man who has learned to handle his body as he falls asleep, has an advantage over the man who never pays any attention to the process.

In relation to the technique of dying it is only possible for me at this time to make one or two suggestions. I deal not here with the attitude of the attendant watchers, I deal only with those points which will make for an easier passing over of the transient soul.

First, let there be silence in the chamber. This is, of course, frequently the case. It must be remembered that the dying person may usually be unconscious. This unconsciousness is apparent but not real. In nine hundred cases out of a thousand the brain awareness is there, with a full consciousness of happenings, but there is a complete paralysis of the will to express and complete inability to generate the energy which will indicate aliveness. When silence and understanding rule the sick room, the departing soul can hold possession of its instrument with clarity until the last minute and can make due preparation.

Later, when more anent color is known, only orange lights will be permitted in the sick room of a dying person, and these will only be installed with due ceremony when there is assuredly no possibility of recovery. Orange aids the focusing in the head, just as red stimulates the solar plexus and green has a definite effect upon the heart and life streams.

Certain types of music will be used when more in connection with sound is understood, but there is no music as yet which will facilitate the work of the soul in abstracting itself from the body, though certain notes on the organ will be found effective. At the exact moment of death, if a person’s own note is sounded, it will coordinate the two streams of energy and eventually rupture the life thread, but the knowledge of this is too dangerous to transmit yet and can only later be given. I would indicate the future and the lines along which future occult study will run.

It will be found also that pressure on certain nerve centers and on certain arteries will facilitate the work. (This science of dying is held in custody, as many students know, in Tibet.) Pressure on the jugular vein and on certain big nerves in the region of the head and on a particular spot in the medulla oblongata will be found helpful and effective. A definite science of death will inevitably later be elaborated, but only when the fact of the soul is recognized and its relation to the body has been scientifically demonstrated.

Mantric phrases will also be employed and definitely built into the consciousness of the dying person by those around him, or employed deliberately and mentally by himself. The Christ demonstrated their use when be cried aloud, “Father, into Thy hands I commend my spirit.” And we have another instance in the words, “Lord, now lettest Thou Thy servant depart in peace.” The steady use of the Sacred Word chanted in an undertone or on a particular key (to which the dying man will be found to respond) may later constitute also a part of the ritual of transition accompanied by the anointing with oil, as preserved in the Catholic Church. Extreme unction has an occult, scientific basis. The top of the  head of the dying man should also symbolically point towards the East and the feet and the hands should be crossed. Sandalwood only should be burned in the room and no incense of any other kind permitted, for sandalwood is the incense of the first or destroyer ray and the soul is in process of destroying its habitation.

This is all I can at this time communicate on the subject of death for the consideration of the general public. But I conjure all of you to push the study of death and its technique as far as possible and to carry forward occult investigation of this matter.

Excerpted from “A Treatise on White Magic – Rule Eleven – Salvation from Death”

By Alice Bailey & Djwhal Kuhl

The Sequence of Events at Death

I feel that the best that I can do, in order to clarify this subject more completely, is to describe the sequence of events which happens at a death bed, reminding you that the points of final abstraction are three in number:

  • the head for disciples and initiates and also for advanced mental types;
  • the heart for aspirants, for men of goodwill, and for all those who have achieved a measure of personality integrity and are attempting to fulfil, as far as in them lies, the law of love;
  • and the solar plexus for the undeveloped and emotionally polarized persons.

All I can do is to tabulate the stages of the process, leaving you to accept them as an interesting and possible hypothesis awaiting verification; to believe them unquestioningly because you have confidence in my knowledge, or to reject them as fantastic, unverifiable and of no moment anyway. I recommend the first of the three, for it will enable you to preserve your mental integrity, it will indicate an open mind, and at the same time it will protect you from gullibility and from narrow-mindedness. These stages, therefore, are:

1. The soul sounds forth a “word of withdrawal” from its own plane, and immediately an interior processing and reaction is evoked within the man upon the physical plane.

  • Certain physiological events take place at the seat of the disease, in connection with the heart, and affecting also the three great systems which so potently condition the physical man: the blood stream, the nervous system in its various expressions, and the endocrine system. With these effects I shall not deal. The pathology of death is well known and has received much study exoterically; much still remains to be discovered and will later be discovered. I am concerned, first of all, with the subjective reactions which (in the last analysis) bring about the pathological predisposition to death.
  • A vibration runs along the nadis. The nadis are, as you well know, the etheric counterpart of the entire nervous system, and they underlie every single nerve in the entire physical body. They are the agents par excellence of the directing impulses of the soul, reacting to the vibratory activity which emanates from the etheric counterpart of the brain. They respond to the directing Word, react to the “pull” of the soul, and then organize themselves for abstraction.
  • The blood stream becomes affected in a peculiarly occult manner. The “blood is the life,” we are told; it is interiorly changed as a result of the two previous stages, but primarily as the result of an activity hitherto undiscovered by modern science, for which the glandular system is responsible. The glands, in response to the call of death, inject into the blood stream a substance which in turn affects the heart. There the life thread is anchored, and this substance in the blood is regarded as “death-dealing” and is one of the basic causes of coma and of loss of consciousness. It evokes a reflex action in the brain. This substance and its effect will be questioned as yet by orthodox medicine, but its presence will later be recognized.
  • A psychic tremor is established which has the effect of loosening or breaking the connection between the nadis and the nervous system; the etheric body is thereby detached from its dense sheath, though still interpenetrating every part of it.

2. There is frequently a pause at this point of a shorter or longer period of time. This is allowed in order to carry forward the loosening process as smoothly and as painlessly as possible. This loosening of the nadis starts in the eyes. This process of detachment often shows itself in the relaxation and lack of fear which dying persons so often show; they evidence a condition of peace, and a willingness to go, plus an inability to make a mental effort. It is as if the dying person, still preserving his consciousness, gathers his resources together for the final abstraction. This is the stage in which – the fear of death once and for all removed from the racial mind – the friends and relatives of the departing person will “make a festival” for him and will rejoice with him because he is relinquishing the body. At present this is not possible. Distress rules, and the stage passes unrecognized and is not utilized, as it will some day be.

3. Next, the organized etheric body, loosened from all nervous relationship through the action of the nadis, begins to gather itself together for the final departure. It withdraws from the extremities towards the required “door of exit” and focuses itself in the area around that door for the final “pull” of the directing soul. All has been proceeding under the Law of Attraction up to this point – the magnetic, attractive will of the soul. Now another “pull” or attractive impulse makes itself felt. The dense physical body, the sumtotal of organs, cells and atoms, is steadily being released from the integrating potency of the vital body by the action of the nadis; it begins to respond to the attractive pull of matter itself. This has been called the “earth” pull and is exerted by that mysterious entity whom we call the “spirit of the earth”; this entity is on the involutionary arc, and is to our planet what the physical elemental is to the physical body of man. This physical plane life force is essentially the life and light of atomic substance – the matter of which all forms are made. It is to this reservoir of involutionary and material life that the substance of all forms is restored. Restitution of the commandeered matter of the form occupied by the soul during a life cycle consists in returning to this “Caesar” of the involutionary world what is his, whilst the soul returns to the God Who sent it forth.

It will therefore be apparent that a dual attractive process is at this stage going on:

  • The vital body is being prepared for exit.
  • The physical body is responding to dissolution.

It might be added that a third activity is also present. It is that of the conscious man, withdrawing his consciousness, steadily and gradually, into the astral and mental vehicles, preparatory to the complete abstraction of the etheric body when the right time comes. The man is becoming less and less attached to the physical plane and more withdrawn within himself. In the case of an advanced person, this process is consciously undertaken, and the man retains his vital interests and his awareness of relationship to others even whilst losing his grip on physical existence. In old age this detachment can be more easily noted than in death through disease, and frequently the soul or the living, interested, inner man can be seen losing his grip on physical and, therefore, illusory reality.

4. Again a pause ensues. This isthe point where the physical elemental can at times regain its hold upon the etheric body, if that is deemed desirable by the soul, if death is not part of the inner plan, or if the physical elemental is so powerful that it can prolong the process of dying. This elemental life will sometimes fight a battle lasting for days and weeks. When, however, death is inevitable, the pause at this point will be exceedingly brief, sometimes only for a matter of seconds. The physical elemental has lost its hold, and the etheric body awaits the final “tug” from the soul, acting under the Law of Attraction.

5. The etheric body emerges from the dense physical body in gradual stages and at the chosen point of exit. When this emergence is complete, the vital body then assumes the vague outline of the form that it energized, and this under the influence of the thought-form of himself which the man has built up over the years. This thought-form exists in the case of every human being, and must be destroyed before the second stage of elimination is finally complete. We will touch upon this later. Though freed from the prison of the physical body, the etheric body is not yet freed from its influence. There is still a slight rapport between the two, and this keeps the spiritual man still close to the body just vacated. That is why clairvoyants often claim to see the etheric body hovering around the death bed or the coffin. Still interpenetrating the etheric body are the integrated energies which we call the astral body and the mental vehicle, and at the center there is a point of light which indicates the presence of the soul.

6. The etheric body is gradually dispersed as the energies of which it is composed are reorganized and withdrawn, leaving only the pranic substance which is identified with the etheric vehicle of the planet itself. This process of dispersal is, as I have earlier said, greatly aided by cremation. In the case of the undeveloped person, the etheric body can linger for a long time in the neighborhood of its outer disintegrating shell because the pull of the soul is not potent and the material aspect is. Where the person is advanced, and therefore detached in his thinking from the physical plane, the dissolution of the vital body can be exceedingly rapid. Once it is accomplished, the process of restitution is over; the man is freed, temporarily at least, from all reaction to the attractive pull of physical matter; he stands in his subtle bodies, ready for the great act to which I have given the name “The Art of Elimination.”

One thought emerges as we conclude this inadequate consideration of the death of the physical body in its two aspects: that thought is the integrity of the inner man. He remains himself. He is untouched and untrammelled; he is a free agent as far as the physical plane is concerned, and is responsive now to only three predisposing factors:

  1. The quality of his astral-emotional equipment.
  2. The mental condition in which he habitually lives.
  3. The voice of the soul, often unfamiliar but sometimes well known and loved.

Individuality is not lost; the same person is still present upon the planet. Only that has disappeared which was an integral part of the tangible appearance of our planet. That which has been loved or hated, which has been useful to humanity or a liability, which has served the race or been an ineffectual member of it, still persists, is still in touch with the qualitative and mental processes of existence, and will forever remain – individual, qualified by ray type, part of the kingdom of souls, and a high initiate in his own right.


Excerpted From “Esoteric Healing – Chapter V – The Process of Restitution”

By Alice Bailey& Djwhal Kuhl

Three Dreaming Segments 29-9-21

These came the morning after we had our first social encounter in over a year, a Breton language class. After near two hours of listening to French at high muzzle velocity and Breton I was a little shell shocked.

The first segment is set in Bern and was largely in German hoch-deutsch. I am with a group of people, and we are having German lessons in a building near the centre of Bern and hence the bahnhof. We are discussing how one might get to Manchester by a certain time the next day and looking at both flight and train schedules. The people there are suggesting that one could get a train to Zurich airport fly to London and then get a train to Manchester. They do not appreciate that to get from any of the London airports to the train station to Manchester is not as simple as it would be in Switzerland. UK transport is not so well configured. I suggest that the better way might be to get a train to Zurich and then a flight to another airport like Amsterdam Schiphol and then catch a flight from there. They think that this would be too expensive. I suggest to them that they are unfamiliar with UK train prices which are high…

Dream fades.

I am with P and J and J’s children. J’s children are much younger than they would be now. With them is a dog, an Alsatian. The Alsatian is a bit nervous. I go over to it and inspect it. I notice that is has a wound on its tail which is open and seeping. I say that it needs to see a vet. There are some small white worms in the wound. In the meantime, I dress the wound with some light-coloured clay. I then start phoning around for a vet. Although the dog is unwell J’s children will not leave it alone and continue to play with it in a noisy and energetic manner. I say for them to leave it alone. Apparently, it is vital for the dog to get fixed because P paid £21,000 for it. They both share the dog, P&J. I continue to phone around and find that the nearest vet is a long way away.

Dream fades.

I am in my house and there is a need for me to go to pick up a mattress the following day. I call C and ask him if he would help, he says yes. I say that I will drop by to his house on the way. The next morning, I awake, and C and S are at the door of the house. The house is very much like the one we used to share in Kingsbury as Ph.D. students. I cannot easily get to the door because there is a large puddle of brown floodwater in the hallway. I edge to the door on the shallow side, open it and beckon them in. We shake hands.  I say that I am surprised to see them. They are anxious to get going but I suggest a coffee first. I go into the slightly messy kitchen find a cafetiere and put the kettle on.  As I do this, I suggest that they take a look around the house. S does this and comments that it is a nice house. In the dream I know that it a bit odd for theme to be appearing in my dream, whilst the segment about language classes seems quite natural.

Dream ends.

Present Attitudes to Death

I undertook to take up with you the processes of dying and to consider a little more fully the factor of death – the most familiar experience (could the physical brain but recall it and realize it) in the life of the reincarnating entity or soul. Let me make some comments as to the attitude of man to the experience of “restitution.” This is a peculiarly occult word, largely used by the initiate when speaking of death. The outstanding attitude associated with death is one of fear. This fear is based upon the – at present – mental uncertainty as to the fact of immortality. Beyond the proven fact of some form of survival, established by the psychical research groups, immortality or the permanent existence of what we usually mean when we speak of the “I” remains as yet in the realm of wishful thinking or of belief. This belief can be founded on Christian premises, upon religious affirmation based on rationalizing the matter, and on the more scientific approach which argues that economic necessity requires that that which has been so long in evolving and which is the culminating result of the evolutionary process cannot be lost. It is interesting to note that there is no evidence upon our planet of any higher evolutionary product than that of the human kingdom; even for the materialistic thinker, the uniqueness of man is to be found in his various stages of consciousness and in his capacity to present for investigation all stages of consciousness, from that of the illiterate savage, through all the intermediate stages of mental effectiveness up to the most advanced thinkers and geniuses, capable of creative art, scientific discovery and spiritual perception.

Putting it very simply, the question which the theme of death arouses is: Where is the “I,” the occupying tenant of the body, when that body is relinquished and disintegrates? Is there, in the last analysis, an occupying tenant?

Human history records the endless search for assurance upon this subject; this search culminates today in the numerous societies which are occupying themselves with the attempt to prove immortality and to penetrate into those fastnesses of the spirit which apparently give sanctuary to that “I” which has been the actor on the physical plane and which has hitherto baffled the most earnest seeker. The incentive of fear lies behind this frantic search; it is an unfortunate fact that the majority of the people (apart from a few enlightened scientists and similar intelligent seekers) who engage in the usually questionable techniques of the seance room, are emotional types, easily convinced and only too ready to accept as evidence that which the more intelligent seeker would immediately repudiate.

Let me here make my position clear as regards the great spiritualistic movement which has done so much in the past to prove the fact of survival, and which has also, in certain of its phases, done so much to mislead and deceive mankind. Under this general term, I class also the various psychical research groups and exempt all sincere scientific work. None of these groups has as yet proven their case. The mystery and the foolishness of the average seance room, and the work of the mediums, have nevertheless demonstrated the presence of an inexplicable factor; the laboratories of the scientific research worker have scarcely proved even that. For every case of the definitely acceptable appearance of a discarnate person there are thousands of cases which can be explained upon the grounds of gullibility, telepathic rapport (with the bereaved person, but not with anyone who has passed over), the seeing of thought-forms by the clairvoyant and the hearing of voices by the clairaudient, and also by trickery. Note that I refer to “acceptable appearances” of a returning spirit. There is enough evidence to warrant belief in survival and to prove its factual nature. Upon the grounds of the inexplicable phenomena of contact with the supposedly dead which have been noted, investigated and proven, and upon the character of the men who testify to the fact of these phenomena, we can affirm that something, survives the “restitution” of the material body to the eternal reservoir of substance. It is on this premise that we proceed.

Today the phenomenon of death is becoming increasingly familiar. The world war has launched millions of men and women – civilians and those in the various branches of the armed forces of all the nations – into that unknown world which receives all those who discard the physical form. Conditions are at this time such that in spite of the ancient and deep seated fear of death, there is emerging in the consciousness of mankind the realization that there are many worse things than death; men have come to know that starvation, mutilation, permanent physical incapacity, mental disability as the result of war and the strain of war, the observation of pain and agony which cannot be relieved, are indeed worse than death; also, many know and believe (for such is the glory of the human spirit) that the relinquishing of the values for which men have fought and died down the ages and which are deemed essential to the life of the free human spirit is of greater significance than the process of death. This attitude, characteristic of the sensitive and the right thinking people at this time, is now emerging upon a large scale. This means the recognition, alongside of the ancient fear, of an unconquerable hope of better conditions to be found elsewhere, and this need not necessarily be wishful thinking but an indication of a latent subjective knowledge, slowly coming to the surface. Something is on its way as a result of human distress and human thinking; this is today sensed; this fact will be later demonstrated. Opposing this inner confidence and subjective realization are old habits of thought, the developed materialistic attitude of the present, the fear of deception, and the antagonism of both the scientist and the religious man or churchman. The former rightly refuses to believe that which remains still unproven and seems also not to be susceptible of proof, whilst religious groups and organizations have no confidence in any presentation of truth which they have not formulated in their own terms. This lays an undue emphasis upon belief and thus stultifies all enthusiastic investigation. The discovery of the fact of immortality will come from the people; it will eventually then be accepted by the churches and proven by science, but this not until the aftermath of the war is over and this planetary disturbance has subsided.

The problem of death, needless to say, is founded upon the love of life which is the deepest instinct in human nature. The determination that nothing is lost under divine law is a recognition of science; eternal persistence in some form or another is universally held to be a truth. Out of the welter of theories, three major solutions have been proposed; these are well known to all thinking people. They are:

  1. The strictly materialistic solution, which posits the experience and expression of conscious life as long as the physical, tangible form exists and persists, but also teaches that after death and the subsequent disintegration of the body there is no longer any conscious, functioning, self-identified person. The sense of the “I,” the awareness of a personality in contradistinction to all other personalities, vanishes with the disappearance of the form; personality is believed to be only the sumtotal of the consciousness of the cells in the body. This theory relegates man to the same state as any of the other forms in the three other kingdoms in nature; it is based on the non-sensitivity of the average human being to life, withdrawn from a tangible vehicle; it ignores all evidence to the contrary and says that because we cannot see (visually) and prove (tangibly) the persistence of the “I” or the immortal entity after death, it is non-existent. This theory is not held by so many as it was in earlier years, particularly during the materialistic Victorian age.
  2. The theory of conditional immortality. This theory is still held by certain fundamentalist and theologically narrow schools of thought and also by a few of the intelligentsia, primarily those of egoistic tendency. It posits that only those who reach a particular stage of spiritual awareness, or who accept a peculiar set of theological pronouncements, can receive the gift of personal immortality. The highly intellectual also argue at times that the crowning gift to humanity is a developed and cultured mind, and that those who possess this gift are likewise endowed with eternal persistence. One school dismisses those who are what they regard as spiritually recalcitrant or negative to the imposition of their particular theological certainties, either to complete annihilation as in the materialistic solution, or to a process of eternal punishment, thus at the same time arguing for a form of immortality. Owing to the innate kindness of the human heart, very few are vindictive or unthinking enough to regard this presentation as acceptable, and of course among those we must class the unthinking people who escape from mental responsibility into a blind belief in theological pronouncements. The Christian interpretation as given by the orthodox and the fundamentalist schools proves untenable when submitted to clear reasoning; among the arguments which negate its accuracy lies the fact that Christianity posits a long future but no past; it is likewise a future entirely dependent upon the activities of this present life episode and accounts in no way for the distinctions and differences which distinguish humanity. It is only tenable upon the theory of an anthropomorphic Deity Whose will – as it works out in practice – gives a present that has no past but only a future; the injustice of this is widely recognized, but the inscrutable will of God must not be questioned. Millions still hold this belief, but it is not so strongly held as it was one hundred years ago.
  3. The theory of reincarnation, so familiar to all my readers, is becoming increasingly popular in the Occident; it has always been accepted (though with many foolish additions and interpretations) in the Orient. This teaching has been as much distorted as have the teachings of the Christ or the Buddha or Shri Krishna by their narrow-minded and mentally limited theologians. The basic facts of a spiritual origin, of a descent into matter, of an ascent through the medium of constant incarnations in form until those forms are perfect expressions of the indwelling spiritual consciousness, and of a series of initiations at the close of the cycle of incarnation, are being more readily accepted and acknowledged than ever before.

Such are the major solutions of the problems of immortality and of the persistence of the human soul; they aim to answer the eternal questioning of the human heart as to Whence, Why, Whither and Where? Only the last of these proposed solutions offers a truly rational reply to all of them. Its acceptance has been delayed because, ever since the time of H. P. Blavatsky, who formulated this ancient truth for the modern world in the last quarter of the nineteenth century, it has been so unintelligently presented; it has been handicapped owing to the fact that the Eastern races have always held it, and – from the Western angle – they are heathen and the heathen “in their blindness bow down to wood and stone,” to quote one of your fundamentalist hymns. How curious it is to realize that, to the man from Eastern countries, the religious people in the West do likewise, and can be seen on their knees before the Christian altars bearing statues of the Christ, of the Virgin Mary and of the Apostles.

The occultists of the world, through the theosophical societies and other occult bodies, so-called, have greatly damaged the presentation of the truth anent reincarnation through the unnecessary, unimportant, inaccurate and purely speculative details which they give out as truths anent the processes of death and the circumstances of man after death. These details are largely dependent upon the clairvoyant vision of astral psychics of prominence in the Theosophical Society. Yet in the Scriptures of the world these details are not given, and H.P.B. in The Secret Doctrine gave none. An instance of this inaccurate and foolish attempt to throw light upon the theory of rebirth can be seen in the time limits imposed upon departed human souls between incarnations on the physical plane and the return to physical rebirth – so many years of absence are proclaimed, dependent upon the age of the departed soul and its place upon the ladder of evolution. If, we are told, the soul is very advanced, absence from the physical plane is prolonged, whereas the reverse is the case. Advanced souls and those whose intellectual capacity is rapidly developing come back with great rapidity, owing to their sensitive response to the pull of obligations, interests and responsibilities already established, upon the physical plane. People are apt to forget that time is the sequence of events and of states of consciousness as registered by the physical brain. Where no physical brain exists, what humanity understands by time is non-existent. The removal of the barriers of the form, stage by stage, brings an increasing realization of the Eternal Now. In the case of those who have passed through the door of death and who still continue to think in terms of time, it is due to glamor and to the persistence of a powerful thought-form. It indicates polarization upon the astral plane; this is the plane upon which leading Theosophical writers and psychics have worked, and upon which they have based their writings. They are quite sincere in what they say, but omit to recognize the illusory nature of all findings based on astral clairvoyance. The recognition of a pronounced time factor, and the constant emphasis laid upon timing, are characteristic of all highly developed people in incarnation and of those whose lower, concrete minds are powerful in caliber. Children and child-races on the one hand, and those highly advanced people whose abstract minds are functioning (through the medium of the interpretive lower mind), usually have no sense of time. The initiate uses the time factor in his relations and his dealings with those living upon the physical plane, but is detached within himself from all recognition of it elsewhere in the universe.

Therefore the use of the term “immortality” infers timelessness and teaches that this timelessness exists for that which is not perishable or conditioned by time. This is a statement requiring careful consideration. Man reincarnates under no time urge. He incarnates under the demands of karmic liability, under the pull of that which he, as a soul, has initiated, and because of a sensed need to fulfil instituted obligations; he incarnates also from a sense of responsibility and to meet requirements which an earlier breaking of the laws governing right human relations have imposed upon him. When these requirements, soul necessities, experiences and responsibilities have all been met, he enters permanently “into the clear cold light of love and life” and no longer needs (as far as he himself is concerned) the nursery stage of soul experience on earth. He is free from karmic impositions in the three worlds, but is still under the impulse of karmic necessity which exacts from him the last possible ounce of service that he is in a position to render to those still under the Law of Karmic Liability. You have, therefore, three aspects of the Law of Karma, as it affects the principle of rebirth:

  1. The Law of Karmic Liability, governing life in the three worlds of human evolution, and which is ended altogether at the fourth initiation.
  2. The Law of Karmic Necessity. This governs the life of the advanced disciple and the initiate from the time of the second initiation until a certain initiation higher than the fourth; these initiations enable him to pass on to the Way of the Higher Evolution.
  3. The Law of Karmic Transformation, a mysterious phrase governing the processes undergone upon the Higher Way. These fit the initiate to pass off the cosmic physical plane altogether, and to function upon the cosmic mental plane. It is concerned with the release of those like Sanat Kumara, and His Associates in the Council Chamber at Shamballa, from the imposition of cosmic desire which demonstrates upon our cosmic physical plane as spiritual will. This should be to you an arresting thought. It will be obvious, however, that there is little that I can say upon this subject. The knowledge involved is not yet mine.

To turn now to another aspect of our theme. There are, speaking in the larger sense, three major death episodes.

There is, first of all, the constant recurrence of the fact of physical death. This is familiar to all of us through its extreme frequency, could we but realize it. This recognition would rapidly eliminate the present fear of death. There is then the “second death” spoken of in the Bible, which is in this present planetary cycle associated with the death of all astral control over the human being. In the larger sense, this second death is consummated at the fourth initiation, when even spiritual aspiration dies, being no more needed; the Will of the initiate is now fixed and immovable, and astral sensitivity is no longer required.

There is a curious counterpart to this experience upon a much lower level in the death of all astral emotion which takes place for the individual aspirant at the time of the second initiation. It is then a complete episode and is consciously registered. Between the second and the third initiations, the disciple has to demonstrate a continuity of non-response to astralism and emotionalism. The second death, to which I am here referring, has to do with the death or the disappearance of the causal body at the time of the fourth initiation; this marks the completion of the building of the antahkarana and the institution of direct, unimpeded continuity of relationship between the Monad and the personality.

The third death takes place when the initiate leaves behind him, finally and with no prospect of return, all relation with the cosmic physical plane. This death, necessarily, lies far ahead for all in the Hierarchy and is at present only possible and permissible for a few in the Council Chamber at Shamballa. It is not, however, a process through which Sanat Kumara will pass. He underwent this “transformation” many aeons ago, during the great cataclysm which inaugurated the Lemurian Age, and which was induced by His cosmic experience and the need for an inflow of energy from extra-planetary Beings.

I have given these brief summations so as to enlarge your general understanding of what the Masters call “the extension of death in space.” Nevertheless, in the following pages we shall confine ourselves to the theme of the death of the physical body and of the subtler bodies in the three worlds; we shall deal also with the processes which bring about the reabsorption of the human soul into the spiritual soul upon its own plane, the higher mental plane; we shall consider the reassimilation of substance and the appropriation of matter in order again to reincarnate.


Excerpted from: Esoteric Healing – Chapter IV – The Basic Requirements for Healing

By Alice Bailey& Djwhal Khul

Risk Adjusted Life Expectancy 62.23 years…

– otherwise, it is about 82 according to an internet-based calculator. I am currently 56.75 years old.

We have just been up to town for the wife to pick up her glasses. As is common the length of arm decreases with age. I sat in the car waiting outside the vampire shop, where they do blood tests. I saw a continuous stream of white-haired people pop into the shop to pick up their results. The life expectancy in France is one of the highest but I am an import so to speak. People around here are not so prone to hair dyeing as they are say in Surrey. It is OK to be grey or white. The average physique is small and wiry built for stamina as opposed to front row rugby forward. By colouring I blend by physique less so.

I was contemplating that if everything stays as it is, I will be making two to three visits a year to the vampire shop, just like the others. It is my local one. The doctors here like their lab work done on a regular basis. I got to wondering how many visits I have left. In a few years’ time would there be another man in a right-hand drive car watching me go in and pick up my results? If I follow Harry, my maternal grandfather, I’ll keep a splash of darkness in my hair until clog popping time comes along. I am not following my own father as I still have hair.

{That reminds me I need to remind the G.P. about the carcinoembryonic antigen test next time we visit.}

I sat there and in the ~ 40 minutes wait I saw seven non Brittany registered cars drive by. Looks like the anti-plague migration is still happening we are down to 56 cases per 100,000 now. That means that there is a 0.056 per cent chance of meeting an infected person in a naïve reckoning. I don’t meet many at all so the risk of covid mortality is low as we live in isolation. Vaccinate or not? I am still pretty ambivalent.

I have no plans to do anything other than garden, DIY, blog, cook, go for walkies etc. So, it looks very much that everything will stay the same and I will be joining the vampire shop visitors list for the foreseeable future. How many visits left is an unanswerable question.


Death Quotes

To be idle is a short road to death and to be diligent is a way of life; foolish people are idle, wise people are diligent.


Death is no more than passing from one room into another. But there’s a difference for me, you know. Because in that other room, I shall be able to see.

Helen Keller

What we have done for ourselves alone dies with us; what we have done for others and the world remains and is immortal.

Albert Pike

The fear of death follows from the fear of life. A man who lives fully is prepared to die at any time.

Mark Twain

I am become death, the destroyer of worlds.

J. Robert Oppenheimer

While I thought that I was learning how to live, I have been learning how to die.

Leonardo da Vinci

The day which we fear as our last is but the birthday of eternity.

Lucius Annaeus Seneca

For death is no more than a turning of us over from time to eternity.

William Penn

Dying is easy, it’s living that scares me to death.

Annie Lennox

I had seen birth and death but had thought they were different.

T. S. Eliot

Millions long for immortality who don’t know what to do with themselves on a rainy Sunday afternoon.

Susan Ertz

The idea is to die young as late as possible.

Ashley Montagu

The timing of death, like the ending of a story, gives a changed meaning to what preceded it.

Mary Catherine Bateson

Death is not an end, but a transition-crisis. All the forms of decay are but masks of regeneration–the secret alembics of vitality.

E. H. Chapin

Death is a great revealer of what is in a man, and in its solemn shadow appear the naked lineaments of the soul.

E. H. Chapin

Death ends at last the fear of it.

Edward Counsel

With death comes honesty.

Salman Rushdie

Death is a natural part of life. Rejoice for those around you who transform into the Force.


Activities Immediately After Death

Immediately after death, and particularly if cremation has taken place, the man, in his kama-manasic body, is as much aware and alert to his environment as he was upon the physical plane when alive. This phrasing permits latitude as to the extent of the awareness and of observation, for a similar latitude must be allowed for those on the physical plane. People are not all equally awake or equally conscious of circumstances or immediate experience. However, as most people are more conscious emotionally than they are physically, and live to a great extent focused in their astral vehicles, the man is quite familiar with the state of consciousness in which he finds himself. Forget not that a plane is essentially a state of consciousness and not a locality, as so many esotericism seem to think. It is recognized by the focused reaction of the self-conscious person who – constantly and distinctly aware of himself – is sentient to the theme of his environment and of his outgoing desires, or (where advanced people are concerned, functioning upon the more advanced levels of the astral plane) sentient of outgoing love and aspiration; the man is engrossed with what engrossed his attention and involved the kamic principle during his incarnated experience. May I again remind you that there is now no physical brain to respond to impacts generated by the inner man, and also that sex, as it is physically understood, is non-existent. Spiritualists would do well to remember this and so grasp the foolishness as well as the impossibility of those spiritual marriages which certain schools of thought in the movement teach and practice. The man, in his astral body, is now free from the strictly animal impulses which, upon the physical plane, are both normal and right, but which now have no meaning to him in his kamic body.

Therefore, taking the average man, what are his first reactions and activities after the restitution of the physical body to the universal reservoir of substance? Let me enumerate some of these reactions:

  1. He becomes consciously aware of himself. This involves a clarity of perception unknown to the average man whilst in physical incarnation.
  2. Time (being the succession of events as registered by the physical brain) is now non-existent as we understand the term, and – as the man turns his attention to his more clearly defined emotional self – there ensues invariably a moment of direct soul contact. This is due to the fact that even in the case of the most ignorant and undeveloped man, the moment of complete restitution does not pass unnoticed by the soul. It has a definite soul effect, something like a long and strong pull at a bell rope, if I might use so simple a simile. For a brief second the soul responds, and the nature of the response is such that the man, standing in his astral body, or rather in his kama-manasic vehicle, sees the experience of the past incarnation spread before him like a map. He records a sense of timelessness.
  3. As a result of the recognition of these experiences, the man isolates those three which were the three major conditioning factors in the life which has gone and which also hold the keys to his future incarnation which he will next initiate. All else is forgotten, and all the lesser experiences fade out of his memory, leaving nothing in his consciousness but what are esoterically called “the three seeds or germs of the future”. These three seeds are in a peculiar manner related to the permanent physical and astral atoms, and thus produce the fivefold force which will create the forms later to appear. It might be said that:
    • Seed One determines later the nature of the physical environment in which the returning man will find his place. It is related to the quality of that future environment and thus conditions the needed field or area of contact.
    • Seed Two determines the quality of the etheric body as a vehicle through which the ray forces can make contact with the dense physical body. It delimits the etheric structure or vital web along which the incoming energies will circulate and is related in particular to the special one of the seven centers which will be the most active and alive during the coming incarnation.
    • Seed Three gives the key to the astral vehicle in which the man will be polarized in the next incarnation. Forget not, I am dealing here with the average man and not with the advanced human being, disciple or initiate. It is this seed which – through the forces it attracts – brings the man again into relation with those he previously loved or with whom he had close contact. It can be accepted as a fact that the group idea governs subjectively all incarnations, and that reincarnated man is brought into incarnation not only through his own desire for physical plane experience, but also under group impulse and in line with the group karma as well as with his own. This is a point which should receive more emphasis. Once this is truly grasped and understood, a great deal of the fear engendered by the thought of death would disappear. The familiar and the loved will still remain the familiar and the loved, because the relation has been closely established over many incarnations and – as the Old Commentary expresses it:

“These seeds of determining recognition are not unique to me and you, but also for the group; within the group they relate one to the other in time and space. Only in the lower three shall those related find their true existence. When soul knows soul and in the meeting-place within the Master’s call, these seeds shall disappear.”

It will be apparent, therefore, how necessary it is to train children to recognize and profit by experience, for this, once learnt, will greatly facilitate this third activity upon the astral plane after death.

  1. Having completed this “isolating of experience,” the man will then seek and automatically find those whom the third seed influence indicates as possessing a constant part in the group experience of which he is an element, consciously or unconsciously. The relation once again established (if those sought have not yet eliminated the physical body), the man acts as he would on earth in the company of his intimates and according to his temperament and point in evolution. If those who are closest to him and whom he deeply loves or hates are still in physical incarnation, he will also seek them out and – just again as he did on earth – he will remain in their neighborhood, aware of their activities, though (unless highly evolved) they will not be aware of his. I can give no detail as to reciprocal give and take or to the modes and methods of contact. Each person differs; each temperament is largely unique. I only seek to make clear certain basic lines of behavior pursued by man prior to the act or acts of elimination.

These four activities cover varying periods of time – from the angle of “those who live below,” though there is no time recognized on the part of the man on the astral plane. Gradually the lure and glamor (of a low or high order) wears off, and the man enters into the stage where he knows – because the mind is now more incisive and dominating – that he is ready for the second death and for the entire elimination of the kamic body or of the kama-manasic vehicle.

One of the things to remember here is that once restitution of the physical in its two aspects has taken place, the inner man is, as I have earlier said, fully conscious. The physical brain and the swirl of etheric forces (mostly somewhat disorganized in the case of the majority of men) are no longer present. These are the two factors which have led students to believe that the experiences of the man on the inner planes of the three worlds are those of a vague drifting, of a semi-conscious experience, or indicate a repetitive life, except in the case of very advanced people or disciples and initiates. But this is not the case. A man on the inner planes is not only as conscious of himself as an individual – with his own plans, life and affairs – as he was on the physical plane, but he is also conscious in the same manner of the surrounding states of consciousness. He may be glamored by astral existence or subject to the telepathic impression of the varying thought currents emanating from the mental plane, but he is also conscious of himself and of his mind (or of the measure of manasic life developed) in a far more potent manner than when he had to work through the medium of the physical brain, when the focus of his consciousness was that of the aspirant, but anchored in the brain. His experience is far richer and fuller than he ever knew when in incarnation. If you will think this out for a little, you will realize that this necessarily would be so.

It may therefore be assumed that the Art of Elimination is practiced more definitely and more effectively than was the restitution of the physical vehicle. Another point must also be considered. On the inner side, men know that the Law of Rebirth governs the experience-process of physical plane living, and they realize then that, prior to the elimination of the kamic, kama-manasic or manasic bodies, they are only passing through an interlude between incarnations and that they consequently face two great experiences:

  1. A moment (long or short, according to the attained point in evolution) wherein contact will be made with the soul or with the solar angel.
  2. After that contact, a relatively violent reorientation to earth life takes place, leading to what is called “the process of descent and calling,” wherein the man:
    • Prepares for physical incarnation again.
    • Sounds his own true note into the substance of the three worlds.
    • Revitalizes the permanent atoms, which form a triangle of force within the causal body.
    • Gathers together the needed substance to form his future bodies of manifestation.
    • Colors them with the qualities and characteristics he has already achieved through life-experience.
    • On the etheric plane arranges the substance of his vital body so that the seven centers take shape and can become the recipients of the inner forces.
    • Makes a deliberate choice of those who will provide him with the needed dense physical covering, and then awaits the moment of incarnation. Esoteric students would do well to remember that parents only donate the dense physical body. They contribute naught else save a body of a particular quality and nature which will provide the needed vehicle of contact with the environment demanded by the incarnating soul. They may also provide a measure of group relationship, where the soul experience is long and a true group relation has been established.

These two critical moments are consciously faced by the discarnate man and he knows what he is doing within the limits set by his point in evolution.


 Excerpted from “Esoteric Healing – Chapter VI – The Art of Elimination”

By Alice Bailey & Djwhal Khul

A Visitation?

In the early hours of this morning, I had an experience which was a bit like a dream but not a dream.

It is to an extent continuing now. There is a presence.

A came to visit, I have spoken to her once in 12 years and that was when she rang me out of the blue to say that someone else, J, had died.

The sense is that A has passed away and fairly recently so. She has come visit to apologise for the part she played in some kind of pact over a decade ago. She has brought J with her though he is much fainter having passed longer.

Through her I can see a meeting in which she and J are sat with two other people I know / knew. In that meeting shenanigans are afoot.

This is not the first time I have had “visits” like this.

My grandfather came to check out how I was doing, no sense of guilt in him only curiosity.

Theoretically it is not the reincarnating Ego or Soul that visits, it is the remnants of one of the lower vehicles still tenuously connected to the Soul and imbued by it. The more form obsessed a being is the longer it lingers in the in between.

At death we cut the crap and see all our BS and wrongdoings for what they are so that we can “plan” our next birth. The Soul wants to work off karma even if the personality does not.

I’ll look out for an obituary to see if this experience has any reality to it.

Hmm  weird start to the day.