In many different ways and through many metaphors and Teachings, humanity has been taught since the dawn of time about the graded states of consciousness and the need for intentional striving in order to attain these higher levels of consciousness. As far back as 36,000 years ago, the Emerald Tablets of Thoth sought to inspire humanity to ascend the stairs of attainment and to climb the “mountain” towards the light. The Book of Genesis specifically refers to Jacob’s ladder, which at the very top, led to heaven wherein stood the Lord, flanked by angels descending and ascending the ladder. Additionally, in the Cave Allegory, Plato, the great Philosopher-Teacher presented the analogy of the strange prisoners living in an underground den who apprehended truth to be nothing but the shadows of the images that the fire casts on the walls of the cave.
Plato explains that if the prisoners [un-awakened humanity] are to be freed from the darkened cave, after seeing only the shadows, they would eventually develop the ability to see themselves and other objects as reflected in the water; later, they would be able to decipher the objects themselves. As these prisoners became accustomed to their growing sense of light, they would then be able to gaze upon the light of the moon and the stars. And, only lastly could they behold the light of the sun by day. Only lastly could they, in Plato’s words, turn “from the world of becoming into that of being, and learn by degrees to endure…the GOOD.” Plato affirms, “In the world of knowledge, the idea of good appears last of all” and it is seen only with great effort.2
This same truth is presented within chapter 13 of the first Epistle to the Corinthians wherein we are reminded that when the perfect comes, the partial will pass away; that although we now see in a mirror dimly, eventually, we shall see “face to face” and although now we may see in part, eventually, we shall know—as fully as we ourselves are known.
The Ageless Wisdom has long taught about a hierarchy of being, which like Jacob’s ladder leads from one state of consciousness to the next. Within this Wisdom three great planetary centers are recognized: Shamballa, the Hierarchy, and Humanity. As the individual awakens to the energy of Love-Wisdom, so he/she can recognize these “rungs of the ladder”: Love relates Humanity to the Hierarchy, and Wisdom relates the Hierarchy to Shamballa. Only when Humanity and the Hierarchy are working together in a practical synthesis, can the Shamballa energy be permitted complete inflow through the medium of the two other centres. The Good in its ultimate form is an attribute of Shamballa, which is why, as Plato understood, it is the last of the virtuous qualities to be known and to be “endured.”
In the book, Esoteric Astrology, the Tibetan Master, Djwhal Khul, further explains that the ultimate triumph of good is inevitable. It is a characteristic and consequence of the highest form of energy found on our planet—that of the synthesizing Spiritual Will.
However, as Plato teaches, the unenlightened personality cannot recognize the divine expression of the Good. The Soul therefore meets resistance and the immediate response is one of friction and conflict. Because of its failure to respond, the individual personality and concentrically, the group and humanity as a whole, again and again thwart the expression of the Good.
Nevertheless, we can take courage from the fact that the Good is ceaseless, undying and unconquerable. It eternally exists, waiting to be discovered, known and practiced. And, towards this end, the Agni Yoga wisdom encourages all to achieve: “The Thinker never tired of calling His disciples to perfecting the art of the Good. He said, ‘A field should be fertilized to produce good crops, and it is the same for the human soul.’”3 (Next)