Theosophy defines seven planes of existence within the cosmic physical plane, each with seven sub-planes. They are the logoic, monadic, atmic, buddhic, manasic/mental, astral, and etheric/physical. This sevenfold division is anchored in the seven rays and apparently reflected in a somewhat analogous manner, throughout our local universe. Here we have the seven Rishies of the Great Bear, the seven sisters of the Pleiades, seven holy planets, seven root races of humanity, seven days of the week, seven main chakras etc. Although Alice Bailey is controversial among some theosophists, I will stick to her contribution (1880-1949). In her many books, intuition is mentioned 614 times, and it refers primarily to the buddhic plane. Thus, before we turn to the notion intuition per se, it is instrumental to discuss briefly, the context and embedding of the buddhic plane, within the Spiritual Triad. As the adjudication committee is indeed familiar with Theosophy, I will not go on to define the many concepts therein, at any length. Nor will I doubt the authority of Bailey and the Tibetan master D.K. Hence, I rely on extensive quotations.
“The Ego/Soul, the reflection of the Monad, is in itself a triplicity, as is all else in nature, and reflects the three aspects of divinity, just as the Monad reflects on a higher plane the three aspects—will, love-wisdom, and active intelligence—of the Deity.” Thus, the Monad is the source of light, not only to the human family, but it is the receiver of light from the threefold Sun. In yet other words, the Monad is to the planetary Logos what the third eye is to man. It is the sum total of all the three aspects, and of the seven principles of man. The three aspects of divinity are summarized in an appendix. The Monad then, is reflected on its involutionary arc, in the Spiritual Triad of atma, buddhi, manas. Atma then, is the first or will aspect, buddhi the second or love-wisdom, and manas the third, active intelligence aspect. Being the second unifying aspect of the Triad, buddhi or intuition, is the expression of the threefold Spiritual Triad. It is a result of the life of the Monad—an energy which carries revelation of divine purpose. “The intuition is concerned with nothing whatsoever in the three worlds of human experience but only with the perceptions of the Spiritual Triad, with the world of ideas. The intuition is to the world of meaning what the mind is to the three worlds of experience.”
The radiation which comes from the plane of atma is further defined as “the emanatory expression of the capacity of the Master to enter into the Council at Shamballa, to register the purpose of God and to work with the Plan, which is the expression, in any given cycle, of the working out of the divine Will. This aspect of the Master's radiatory activity is of so high a nature that only the advanced initiate-chela can register it. It is transmitted into the physical consciousness of the disciple along the following lines; a) The atmic permanent atom or the focus of the spiritual will, the first aspect of the Spiritual Triad, b) The will/sacrifice petals of the egoic lotus, c) The etheric vehicle in its highest aspects, d) The head centre, e) The centre at the base of the spine, which is aroused into activity in response to the vibratory radiation of the other four points of transmission.” The first aspect and ray of will and power is transmitted through Aries, Leo and Capricorn. It is transfigured through Vulcan esoterically, and Pluto exoterically.
The radiation which comes from the plane of buddhi or intuition is further defined as “an expression of the love nature of the Master, and is that which enables Him to be in touch with the Heart of God.” Bailey also writes that the three radiations from atma, buddhi, manas thus are the factors which put the Master and the Ashram in contact with that which is occultly spoken of as the physical Sun, the heart of the Sun and the Central Spiritual Sun. With Plato’s words: “As thus illuminating and accounting for the rational aspect of the universe the Good is analogous to the Sun, which, as the source of light is the cause of vision and of visibility and also of all mortal existence.” The line along which the vibratory activity of the buddhic plane reaches the disciple is; a) The buddhic permanent atom, or the intuitional vehicle of the advanced disciple, b) The astral/love petals of the egoic lotus, c) The astral body in its highest aspect, d) The heart centre. The second aspect and ray of love-wisdom is transmitted through Gemini, Virgo and Pisces. It is transfigured through Jupiter esoterically and the Sun exoterically.
The radiation which comes from the higher levels of the mental plane, or from the lowest aspect of the Spiritual Triad, is further defined as an expression of the Mind of God. “It is this particular radiation which evokes a response from the embryonic abstract mind of the disciple when the antahkarana is being built and is the first kind of contact to which the neophyte responds in the later stages of the Probationary Path. A direct line of influential approach is made between the Master and the awakening disciple as follows; a) The manasic permanent atom of the disciple, b) The physical/knowledge petals of the egoic lotus, c) The lower concrete mind "held steady in the light", d) The throat centre, e) The brain of the disciple upon the physical plane.” The third aspect and ray of active intelligence is transmitted through Cancer, Libra and Capricorn. It is transfigured through Saturn esoterically and the Earth exoterically.
The Buddhic Plane and Intuition
Before we turn to a more detailed discussion of how intuition may function in the advanced individual, according to Theosophy, we will look a little bit closer at the buddhic and manasic planes. This may help us further in discriminating between intuition and analysis. The buddhic or fourth plane is ‘located’ in the middle among the seven planes. This is significant in many ways. We remember how continental philosophy and the Buddhist doctrine emphasize the coherent, unifying, balanced, non-discriminating, and integrating aspects of intuition. In Theosophy it is argued that when the fourth plane of harmony or of buddhi is achieved, then is consummation. That is, completion, perfection, fulfillment. What is the meaning of this? “When the work of the personality is completed, and when the sun of the microcosm, the Ego, pours unimpeded down into the personal life, then, comes fruition and harvest. The at-one-ment, or the harmonizing has been made, and the goal has been reached.”
Bailey also writes that: “When man begins in a small sense to co-ordinate the buddhic vehicle or, to express it otherwise, when he has developed the power to contact ever so slightly the buddhic plane, then he begins simultaneously and consciously to achieve the ability to escape from the etheric web on the physical plane. Later he escapes from its correspondence on the [fourth sub-plane of the] astral plane, and finally from [its] correspondence on the fourth subplane of the mental plane, this time via the mental unit. This leads eventually to causal functioning, or to the ability to dwell, and to be active in, the vehicle of the Ego, which is the embodiment of the love and wisdom aspect of the Monad.” Another result may be less conflict in these areas or subplanes. “Thus, in both the cosmic and solar physical planes, the plane of buddhi is ever the plane of at-one-ment, or the meeting ground of diversities, and of their blending—not into a fundamental unity—but into group unity. This is owing to the fact that the buddhic plane is pre-eminently the plane most concerned with the evolution of the Heavenly Men.” “The hierarchy, for instance, which is the essence of the intangible Life of Spirit, and principle of Buddhi, is the esoteric cause of the cosmic marriage of spirit and matter, based on the love and desire of the Logos.”
Hence, The Buddhic Plane is related to The fourth law of Magnetic Control, and it holds sway on the fourth subplane of each plane, in the fourth round, and in the fourth root-race specially, controlling sex manifestation on the physical plane, and inspired by astral desire, the reflection of the buddhic. Bailey thus gives us the following correspondences:
4th Law Magnetic Control.
4th Ray Harmony or beauty. Harmony through conflict. Taurus, Scorpio, Sagittarius.
4th Plane The buddhic. Colour yellow.
4th Subplane Buddhic Magnetic Control.
4th Round Dense Physical Magnetism.
4th Root-Race The Atlantean, in which the above qualities specially demonstrated.
The Buddhic Plane and fourth ray is also connected to the planet Mercury, which is called the first of the celestial Gods. “It is Hermes, to which God is attributed, the invention of, and the first initiation of men into Magic. Mercury is Budh, wisdom, enlightenment or `reawakening' in the divine science.” Interestingly, Mercury and the Sun is one, esoterically. This is of great importance to our inquiry. It indicates why Mercury is related to this plane of intuition, and at-one-ment, and how it facilitates and relates to the second aspect. The second aspect being transformed by the Sun and transmitted by the signs Gemini, Virgo and Pisces, the former two exoterically ruled by Mercury. The Tibetan gives us the following reason:
When we find that the power of Mercury is lessened in Sagittarius and Pisces, and that it finally "falls" in Pisces, what is the esoteric and spiritual meaning? “Simply, that after the stage of initiation in Capricorn, as the result of the reversal of the wheel and the consequent experiences, and after the triumph of Scorpio, the power of the mind lessens steadily till finally (like other aspects of form life in the three worlds) it comes to an end and its meaning and illuminating aspects between soul and physical brain are no longer required. The man, coming definitely into full soul consciousness, requires now no mediator but deals directly himself with his emanating source. Mercury is then met with again under another name, this time as the Sun, mediating between the higher aspects—soul and spirit—for Mercury and the Sun is One. Through Mercury, the mind is illumined and relation is established between personality and the soul. As Mercury, the Sun—the mediator—shifts to a still higher plane and is no longer mediator between two different stages in consciousness but between life and consciousness itself; this is a very different matter and effects the higher understanding.” When we also take into consideration that Mercury is the hierarchical ruler of Scorpio (fourth ray) we see how the intuitive wisdom of the Buddhic plane dispels the fogs and the mists of the world of glamour. The dual mind eventually becomes non-dual, that is, intuitive. This rationale explains many of the connotations attached to intuition, by philosophers.
The Manasic or Mental Plane – The Intellect
In order to grasp the fuller meaning of intuition, we may do well in considering the many talents and challenges, at the plane below it. The fifth plane is related to the Fifth law of Fixation and is primarily concerned with the fifth principle of mind or manas. Its four lower sub-planes are related to the concrete, analytical and discursive mind, the so called mental unit, which is elaborated in earlier sections. The upper section, where the causal body and twelve-petalled egoic lotus dwells, is related to the abstract mind and the manasic permanent atom. The link or bridge between them is termed antahkarana, and is threefold. Energy follows thought, thus we better train our intellect so that it willingly serves the soul. If not it may be both elusive and a main agent in the betrayal of our selves and a slayer of the real: “It is this principle which makes a human being what he is; it is this principle which makes him a prisoner within the form and upon the planet, and thus makes him vulnerable and open to attacks upon the form aspect; these constitute part of the age-long action of evil versus good. It is this fifth principle, when controlled and used by the Son of Mind, Who is a Son of God, which will enable the spiritual man to free himself from form of every kind, and therefore from disease and death.” Hence the upward pointing pentagram was applied as key emblem by the Pythagoreans. Also, rumors have it that we will face Armageddon in the fifth round of the sixth rootrace.
The lessons to be learned on this fifth plane are several according to Bailey. The disciple will learn effectively to decentralize himself. This means that he will ask nothing for the separated self. One can therefore easily see why aspirants are taught to pledge allegiance to their Higher Self, and to foreswear all claims of this separated self. His eyes are towards the light and not towards desire for contact with the Master. This, therefore, rules out that spiritual selfishness which has been expressed by the desire, innate and deep, for recognition by one of the Great Ones. He will have learnt to serve instinctively. He may, and usually does, need to learn to discriminate in his service. He will have learnt to use the mind in two directions, increasingly and at will, and instantaneously. That is; he can cast the search-light of the mind into the world of the soul, and know and recognize those truths which must, for him, become his experienced knowledge. He can also cast it into the world of illusion and dispel the glamour of the personal. When he can do that, then he begins to dispel the world glamour for he is nearing initiation. In these quotes we recognize the same emphasis upon the duality of mind that we have discussed in detail in earlier sections of this thesis. Pivotal questions then, are how the mind will behave, and what it will experience, when it soars into the fourth plane? We will return to them.
Much of the process going on at the fifth plane is captured in the sentence; I am that and that am I. When split into three divisions we have on the personality level, I am. Here there is discrimination between the I-consciousness, and that which is cognized in the external world. This is the ability to distinguish between oneself and all other forms extant. It is universally developed and has reached a fairly high stage of evolution. When soul infusion is strengthened, the individual claims; I am that. “Here there is discrimination between the Ego/soul and the Personality. This narrows the concept down to the sphere of a man's own consciousness, and enables him to differentiate between his subjective self or soul, and the bodies which hold that soul enshrined. (I have a physical, astral and mental body, but I am not these bodies.) This type of discrimination is not by any means so universally developed. Most men do not as yet distinguish with accuracy between themselves as the THINKER, persistent in time and space, and the vehicle through which they think, which is ephemeral and transient. The real recognition of this essential duality and the scientific appreciation of it can be seen in the mystics, the advanced thinkers of the race, the conscious aspirants, and those nearing the Portal of Initiation.”
Eventually at a more advanced stage there is further discrimination between soul and Spirit/ Monad, or the realization by the man that not only can he say, I am; not only can he realize that I am That; but that he can advance to a still further realization, and say, I am That, I am. In this latter statement, there is complete identification & alignment with the purpose of life. Where it is present, there is an immediate decentralization of the dramatic I, of that capacity always to relate all happenings, all phenomena, and group work to oneself as the centre. In all these expansions and appreciations the discriminative faculty of manas is utilized. This mantra is especially relevant to the fifth sign Leo, which is ruled by the physical Sun, the heart of the Sun/Neptun and the central spiritual Sun/Uranus, recapitulating this story.
We may also mention that manas is a principle of the Logos, and necessarily therefore is felt in all those evolutions which are a part of His nature but is allied especially to the throat and head centres. It is the active intelligent factor which enables a solar Logos, a planetary Logos or Heavenly Man, and a human being to use intelligently a form or vehicle, build faculty into the causal body, reap the benefit of experience, expand consciousness, make progress towards a specified goal, discriminate between the two poles, choose the direction in which his activity shall trend, perfect the form as well as use it, obtain control of active substance, and turn its forces into desired channels, co-ordinate the different grades of matter, and synthesize the utilized forms till each and all show a unanimous line of action and express simultaneously the will of the Indweller. Again we can list the following correspondences:
5th Law Fixation, of a fixed point in the Personality.
5th Ray Concrete Knowledge. Exoteric Science. Leo, Sagittarius, Aquarius.
5th Plane The Manasic/Mental.
5th Subplane Fixed mental.
5th Round Judgment.
5th Root-Race The Arian, in which we are now.
The manasic plane and fifth ray is also related to the planet Venus, and the Ajna center, in both average man and disciples. Venus rules Taurus, and Hercules teach us an important lesson when he captures the Cretan Bull. He tracks it down in a labyrinth and rides it over the sea, to the mainland. Here it is handed over to a 3-headed Kyklope, having one eye, representing the Ajna center. The story pictures how our enlightened mind is to be in charge of our threefold lower self, and in Taurus, particularly over the astral body. Venus is also a ruler in Libra, the sign where the turning on the wheel of life takes place. Mercury has as we have seen, a pivotal relation to the Sun, and Venus has a peculiar relation to our Earth. It is our older and more mature ‘sister’, in charge of parts of our ‘education’. We are told that Venus was responsible for the coming in of mind in the Earth chain. “The Venus scheme, being in the fifth round, had the fifth principle of manas co-ordinated and developed, the minor four manasic aspects had been synthesised, and the buddhic aspect was being provided with a means of expression through the medium of the perfected fifth.
That is, when the intellect functions properly, intuition may enter. This important event is described by Bailey in the following way: “The coming of the Lords of Flame to the Earth was all under law and not just an accidental and fortunate happening; it was a planetary matter which finds its correspondence in the connection between the mental unit and the manasic permanent atom. Again, as the antahkarana is built by individual man between these two points, so—again in a planetary sense—is a channel being built by collective man on this planet to its primary, Venus.”
Thus we start to glimpse why the subjective sign Gemini is ruled by Mercury exoterically, Venus esoterically and the Earth hierarchically, and why it is oriented towards Libra, which is ruled by Venus. Gemini establishes a connection between the highest and the lowest; spirit, soul and personality. Libra blends and harmonizes them. The polar opposite to Gemini, Sagittarius (fourth ray), relates to the buddhic plane and is ruled by the Earth esoterically, hence the connection is secured. Gemini and Sagittarius are the only two constellations ruled by the non-sacred planet Earth, “and this fact is of major significance, creating an unusual situation in the solar system and a unique relation. The cosmic line of force from Gemini to Sagittarius and the reverse is subjectively and esoterically related to our Earth, thus guaranteeing its soul development, the unfoldment of form as an expression of that soul, and leading our sorrowful humanity upon this woeful planet inevitably to the very gate of initiation in Capricorn.
In this statement and in the fact of the pain and sorrow which are distinguishing qualities of our planetary life lies hid a secret mystery. Through this relationship and through the medium of the potencies pouring into our planet, a situation is set up which might be expressed in the words of the Old Commentary: When the dual forces of the cosmic brothers (Gemini) become the energy of the one who rides towards the light (Sagittarius) [aided by Venus] then the fourth becomes the fifth. Humanity, the link, becomes the Hierarchy [the fifth kingdom], the bestower of all good. Then all the Sons of God rejoice.” In the human system then, the right eye corresponds with Buddhi and Mercury, and the left eye with Manas and Venus or Lucifer. The only astrological aspects that can be made between the two are the sextile, semisextile and conjunction, indicating that the key issue is harmonization, alignment and unification of the concrete, abstract and intuitive state of mind.
To summarize on buddhi & manas we can again refer to Bailey who writes that The Spirit employs manas in all that concerns matter, the electrical substance, or the active akasha. Thoughts are things as the Buddhists points out to us. The Spirit employs buddhi in all that relates to the psyche, all that relates to the soul of the world, to the soul of an individual, or to the soul of every form. The Spirit employs will or atma in all that relates to the essence of all, to itself, considering the essence and the Self as pure Spirit as distinguished from spirit-matter. In the first case, the distinctive quality of manas is discrimination which enables the Spirit to differentiate between: The Self and the not-Self, spirit and matter, the planes and the sub-planes. Manas is also electricity, cohesion, the key opening the door into the fifth kingdom, the synthetic vibration of five rays and the intelligent will or ordered purpose of an existence.
In the second case, the buddhic principle has for its distinctive quality love, and demonstrates as wisdom working through love and producing: Unity between all Selves, group coherence and effective work in connection with evolution. “In the third case the Spirit employs the will aspect or atma, which has, for its distinctive feature, that coherent force which keeps the purpose of the entity ever in view, working it out through love in substantial form.” Manas, then, is but the form through which a higher principle is making itself known. “Manas is, really will working itself out on the physical plane, and the truth of this will be seen when it is realized that all our planes form the cosmic physical plane, whereon an Entity, inconceivably greater than our Logos, is working out a set purpose through the Logos, through us, through all Spirit-substance that is included within His sphere of radiatory activity.”
Instinct Intellect and Intuition
Before we turn to intuition and its three main qualities expressing the Triad, we will briefly consider it in a somewhat wider evolutionary context. It is perhaps instrumental to relate instinct, intellect and intuition. Bailey writes; “Through analysis, correlation and synthesis, the thought power of man is developed and the abstract mind can be unified with the concrete. Through their work therefore that interesting sensitivity of man, with its three outstanding characteristics of instinct, intellect and intuition is brought to a condition of intelligent coordination. Instinct relates man to the animal world intellect unites him to his fellow men, whilst the intuition reveals to him the life of divinity. All these three are the subject matter of philosophical investigation, for the theme of the philosophers is the nature of reality and the means of knowledge.” This statement aligns very well with the philosophical account given in this thesis, throughout which, we have seen an emphasis on how intuition is the prerogative of the soul.
The soul is sometimes pictured as a twelve-petalled egoic lotus, or in wheels of life having twelve sections, which resembles the twelve zodiacal constellations. Plato himself pictured his model of the Demiurge, the twelve sided dodecahedron, with the zodiac. Bailey writes that it should be remembered that—from the angle of the final development of the twelve zodiacal potencies—the twelve opposites must become the blended six, and this is brought about by the fusion in consciousness of the polar opposites. The opposites eternally remain from the point of view of human reason, but to the initiate whose intuition is functioning they constitute but six great potencies, because he has achieved ‘the freedom of the two,’ as it is sometimes called. With regard to the path of evolution, discipleship and initiation we have;
1. Path of Evolution and Probation.
a. Unfoldment of intellect and of sensory perception.
b. Response to the centre called Humanity.
c. Manas or the mind takes control. Personality functions.
d. The physical sun.
2. Path of Discipleship.
a. Unfoldment of the love nature.
b. Achievement of illumination.
c. Response to the centre called the Hierarchy.
d. Buddhi or the intuition is in control. The soul functions.
e. The heart of the sun. The ascendant.
3. Path of Initiation.
a. Unfolding the will.
b. Achievement of synthesis.
c. Response to the centre called Shamballa.
d. Atma or dynamic purpose is in control. The will-to-good. The Monad functions.
e. The central spiritual sun.
Definition of Intuition
We have established the hypothesis that intuition is the synthetic perception which is the prerogative of the soul. It becomes possible when the soul, on its own level, is reaching in two directions, that is, towards the Monad, and towards the integrated personality. Second, it is on a higher turn of the spiral the expression of the threefold Spiritual Triad of atma, buddhi, manas. In the numerous pages written by the Tibetan and Alice Bailey, many aspects of intuition are revealed. I will somehow try to sort them out with reference to the threefold Spiritual triad:
1. The Atmic or Will Aspect of Intuition
Keywords: Reveals & Recognize Divine Laws, Purpose & Plan
2. The Buddhic or Love-Wisdom Aspect of Intuition
Keywords: Perceives & Identifies with Unity & Universal Oneness. Synthesis, Light, Illumination, Irradiation of the Way. Compassion.
3. The Manasic or Mind Aspect of Intuition
Keywords: Conceives & Offsets the Form Building Propensities of the Mind. Awareness.
1. The Atmic or Will Aspect of Intuition
“When the individual emerge from the world of glamour so that there can be a clear perception of the new vision; a new light is thrown upon old and well-known truths so that their significance is extraordinarily changed, and in that changing, the plan or purpose of Deity takes on an entirely fresh meaning. The inexperienced neophyte is constantly receiving revelations and recording what he regards as most unusual intuitions. All that is really happening, however, is that he is becoming aware of soul knowledge, whereas for the initiate the intuition is ever the revelation of the purpose of Shamballa and the working out, both from the short range and the long range angle, of the divine Plan. The revelation which is accorded at initiation is given to the soul, recorded by the ‘mind held steady in the light’ and then later—with greater or less rapidity—transferred to the brain.”
In yet other words: “The intuition is a function of the mind also and, when rightly used, it enables man to grasp reality with clarity and to see that reality free from glamour and the illusions of the three worlds. When the intuition functions in any human being, he is enabled to take direct and correct action for he is in touch with the Plan, with pure and unadulterated fact and undistorted ideas—free from illusion and coming direct from the divine or universal Mind. The unfoldment of this faculty will bring about a world recognition of the Plan and this is the greatest achievement of the intuition in this present world cycle.”
“The major point I would seek to make here is that the intuition is the source or the bestower of revelation. Through the intuition, progressive understanding of the ways of God in the world and on behalf of humanity are revealed; through the intuition, the transcendence and the immanence of God is sequentially grasped and man can enter into that pure knowledge, that inspired reason, which will enable him to comprehend not only the processes of nature in its fivefold divine expression but also the underlying causes of these processes, proving them effects and not initiatory events; through the intuition man arrives at the experience of the kingdom of God, and discovers the nature, the type of lives and of phenomena, and the characteristics of the Sons of God as They come into manifestation. Through the intuition, some of the plans and purposes working out through the manifested created worlds are brought to his attention, and he is shown in what way he and the rest of humanity can cooperate and hasten the divine purpose; through the intuition, the laws of the spiritual life, which are the laws governing God Himself, conditioning Shamballa, and guiding the Hierarchy, are brought to his notice progressively and as he proves capable of appreciating them and working them.” Hence, intuition is the applied power of transfiguration and it indicates future receptivity to dimly sensed truths and is allied with the entire phenomena of prevision, revealing the immediate future.
2. The Buddhic or Love-Wisdom Aspect of Intuition
“When the Plan is sensed, there comes the realization of the unity of all beings, of the synthesis of world evolution and of the unity of the divine objective. All life and all forms are seen then in their true perspective; a right sense of values and of time then eventuates.”The emphasis on time resonates very well with Bergson and his most original conclusion; that Absolute reality as revealed by intuition is the ever-rolling stream and duration of time. Kant as well emphasizes time as one of the two Forms of intuition.
Bailey states that; “Intuition is a comprehensive grip of the principle of universality, and when it is functioning there is, momentarily at least, a complete loss of the sense of separateness. At its highest point, it is known as that Universal Love which has no relation to sentiment or to the affectional reaction but is, predominantly, in the nature of identification with all beings. Then is true compassion known; then does criticism become impossible; then, only, is the divine germ seen as latent in all forms. Intuition is light itself, and when it is functioning, the world is seen as light and the light bodies of all forms become gradually apparent. This brings with it the ability to contact the light centre in all forms, and thus again an essential relationship is established and the sense of superiority and separateness recedes into the background.” In the book Glamour - A World Problem, Bailey attempts to close in on her definition of intuition, and lists three key words:
Illumination.And God said: Let there be light. And there was light. “By illumination I do not mean the light in the head. That is incidental and phenomenal, and many truly intuitive people are entirely unaware of this light. The light to which I refer is that which irradiates the Way. It is ‘the light of the intellect,’ which really means that which illumines the mind and which can reflect itself in that mental apparatus which is held ‘steady in the light.’ This is the ‘Light of the World,’ a Reality which is eternally existent, but which can be discovered only when the individual interior light is recognized as such. The intuition is therefore the recognition in oneself, not theoretically but as a fact in one’s experience, of one’s complete identification with the Universal Mind. That is of one’s constituting part of the great World Life, and of one’s participation in the eternal persisting Existence.”Plato’s One World Argument and emphasis upon a synoptical view, resembles this position.
Understanding/Withdrawal. “This must be appreciated in its literal sense as that which ‘stands under’ the totality of forms. It connotes the power of recession or the capacity to withdraw from one's age-long identification with form life. I would like to point out that this withdrawal is comparatively easy for those who have much of the first ray quality in them. The problem is to withdraw in the esoteric sense, but to avoid at the same time the sense of separateness, of isolation and of superiority. To have true understanding involves an increased ability to love all beings and yet, at the same time, to preserve personality detachment. This detachment can be so easily founded on an inability to love, in a selfish concern for one's own comfort—physical, mental or spiritual, and above all, emotional. Understanding involves contact with life as an integrated personality, plus egoic reaction to the group purposes and plans. It connotes personality-soul unification, wide experience, and a rapid activity of the indwelling Christ principle. Intuitional understanding is always spontaneous. Where the reasoning to an understanding enters, it is not the activity of the intuition.”
Love. “As earlier said, this is not affectionate sentiment, or the possession of a loving disposition; these two later aspects are incidental and sequential. When the intuition is developed, both affection and the possession of a spirit of loving outgo will, necessarily, in their pure form, be demonstrated, but that which produces these is something much more deep and comprehensive. It is that synthetic, inclusive grasp of the life and needs of all beings (I have chosen these two words with intent!) which it is the high prerogative of a divine Son of God to operate. It negates all that builds barriers, makes criticism, and produces separation. It sees no distinction, even when it appreciates need, and it produces in one who loves as a soul immediate identification with that which is loved, or the sense of universal Oneness.”
This view resembles to a degree the position of Bergson, that intuition can place itself within reality, and grasp it by means of intellectual sympathy.
3. The Manasic or Mind Aspect of Intuition
“When the Plan is truly intuited and at first hand, then constructive effort becomes inevitable and there is no lost motion. It is the partial realization of the Plan and its interpretation at second or third hand by the ignorant which is responsible for the wasted effort and the foolish impulses which characterize the present occult and world organizations. The power of intuition requires the unfolding of another faculty in man. The intuition is also a function of the mind.”“In any group which has for its objective the development of intuition, there must appear the concretizing faculty of the mind. This, intuition must both offset and at the same time use. The mind emphasizes form and the building of forms. The intuition is formless, and yet the ideas intuited must express themselves through form”
“From the human angle, ability to work with and in the cosmic etheric substance demonstrates first of all when the abstract mind awakens and begins to impress the concrete mind; an intuition is an idea clothed in etheric substance, and the moment a man becomes responsive to those ideas, he can begin to master the techniques of etheric control. All this is, in reality, an aspect of the great creative process: ideas, emanating from the buddhic levels of being must be clothed in matter of the abstract levels of the mental plane; then they must be clothed in matter of the concrete mental plane; later, with desire matter, and finally (if they live so long) they assume physical form.” The concrete mind is indeed concrete, and may be a barrier in this respect. It is also suggested that “the mind receives illumination from the soul, in the form of ideas thrown into it, or of intuitions which convey exact and direct knowledge, for the intuition is ever infallible.”
Bailey stresses that intuition is useless and inaccessible without a high-grade intelligence. The possession of the abstract mind is not sufficient. It is useful, in that it guarantees the ability of the aspirant to construct the antahkarana; it is nevertheless quite possible to possess a well developed abstract consciousness and yet to be quite devoid of all intuitive perception. Sound abstract thinkers are somewhat rare, being usually impractical idealists.
“In connection with the ‘seed-groups’ which are fusing and blending in humanity at this time, and which—in their totality—constitute the nucleus of the fifth kingdom, the distinguishing quality is the ability to respond intuitionally to higher impression and to present the mind to the light of the intuition and hence to illumination. This intuition is a blend of the two divine qualities of buddhi-manas, or intuitive spiritual understanding (involving interpretation and identification) and the higher abstract mind, which is essentially the power to comprehend that which is not concrete or tangible but which is, in reality, an innate recognition of the lower aspects of the divine Plan as it must affect life in the three worlds.”
Bailey refers to Patanjali and his Yoga Sutras. “The Lord of the mind, the perceiver is ever aware of the constantly active mind stuff. Because it can be seen or cognized, it is apparent, that the mind is not the source of illumination. When the spiritual intelligence which stands alone and freed from objects, reflects itself in the mind stuff, then comes awareness of the Self. Then the mind stuff, reflecting both the knower and the knowable, becomes omniscient. The mind then tends towards discrimination and increasing illumination. When the means to union have been steadily practiced, and when impurity has been overcome, enlightenment takes place, leading up to full illumination. The knowledge (or illumination) achieved is seven-fold and is attained progressively.” In that Light shall we see light…
“The intuition is in reality only the appreciation by the mind of some factor in creation, some law of manifestation and some aspect of truth, known by the soul, emanating from the world of ideas, and being of the nature of those energies which produce all that is known and seen. These truths are always present, and these laws are ever active, but only as the mind is trained and developed, focused, and open-minded can they be recognized, later understood, and finally adjusted to the needs and demands of the cycle and time. Those who have thus trained the mind in the art of clear thinking, the focusing of the attention, and consequent receptivity to truth have always been with us, but hitherto have been few and far between. The intuition which guides all advanced thinkers into the newer fields of learning is but the forerunner of that omniscience which characterizes the soul.”
“The ignorant and the wise meet on common ground as extremes always do. In between are those who are neither totally ignorant nor intuitively wise. They are the mass of the educated people who have knowledge but not understanding, and who have yet to learn the distinction between that which can be grasped by the rational mind, that which can be seen by the mind’s eye, and that which only the higher or abstract mind can formulate and know. This ultimately merges in the intuition, which is the ‘knowing faculty’ of the intelligent and practical mystic who—relegating the emotional and feeling nature to its own place—uses the mind as a focusing point and looks out through that lens upon the world of the soul.” “Through the use of the mind, humanity has become aware of the purposes and employment of the physical apparatus. Now through the use of a still higher faculty, which is a characteristic of the soul, he enters into voluntary and intelligent control of his instrument and learns to understand the purposes for which it exists. This higher faculty is the intuition.”
“Once man is impersonal and free from the reactions of the lower self, and his consciousness is illumined by the clear light of the intuition, then his ‘window of vision’ becomes clarified and his sight into reality is unimpeded. Obstructions (always erected by humanity itself) are removed and he sees all life and form in their true relation and can comprehend, and even occultly see, the passage of the energies.”
“Dr. Suzuki, Professor of Zen Buddhism at the Buddhist College at Kyoto, tells us that it was through supreme perfect knowledge that the Buddha arrived at the wisdom which changed him from a Bodhisattva into a Buddha. This knowledge is a faculty both intellectual and spiritual, through the operation of which the soul is enabled to break the fetters of intellection. The latter is always dualistic inasmuch as it cognizes subject and object, but in the Prajña which is exercised ‘in unison with one-thought-viewing’ there is no separation between knower and known, these are all viewed in one thought, and enlightenment is the outcome of this. Enlightenment we can thus see is an absolute state of mind in which no discrimination takes place, and it requires a great mental effort to realize this state of viewing all things in one thought. The Yogi contemplates all things as dwelling within himself in his own Self. Without any distinction of outer and inner, and thus, by the eye of knowledge, Jnána-chaksus, an expression which might be rendered fairly accurately as intellectual intuition, he perceives or rather conceives, not rationally or discursively, but by a direct awareness and an immediate assent that everything is Atma.”
What Intuition is not
Of particular interest to our inquiry are the sentences where Bailey defines to us, what intuition is not. “The intuition is not a welling forth of love to people and, therefore, an understanding of them. Much that is called intuition is recognition of similarities and the possession of a clear analytical mind. Intelligent people who have lived in the world for some time and who have experienced much and who have contacted many other people can usually sum up with facility the problems and dispositions of others, provided they are interested. This they must not, however, confound with the intuition.”
Furthermore: “The intuition has no relation to psychism, either higher or lower; the seeing of a vision, the hearing of the Voice of the Silence, a pleased reaction to teaching of any kind does not infer the functioning of the intuition. It is not only the seeing of symbols, for that is a special sort of perception and the capacity to tune in on the Universal Mind upon that layer of its activity which produces the pattern-forms on which all etheric bodies are based. It is not intelligent psychology, and a loving desire to help. That emanates from the interplay of a personality, governed by a strong soul orientation, and the group-conscious soul.” Disciples will reach a point in their development “where they will know whether they are reacting to the light of the soul or to the intuitional perception of the Triad. They will then come to the point where they will realize that intuitive perception—as they call it—is only the reaction of the illumined personality to the identification tendency of the Triad. But these concepts are beyond the grasp of the average man because fusion and identification are by no means the same.”
The difficulties in discriminating between instinct, intellect and intuition are also mentioned by Bailey. “The tapping of the sub-conscious, the enunciations of a worthy and high-grade mentality, will account for ninety-eight percent of the material now appearing. They indicate that man has achieved much, and that he is becoming coordinated. They do not indicate the functioning of the intuition, nor the activity of the faculty of spiritual telepathy. People need most carefully to distinguish between the intuition and instinct; between the intellect in its lower aspects and the higher or abstract mind. The line of demarcation must be preserved between the inspired utterances of a soul in touch with Reality, and with other souls, and the platitudes of a nice and cultured mentality.” “Initiation is never taken unless the intuition is becoming active. Spiritual instinct, the lowest aspect of the intuition, indicates readiness for the first initiation; an illumined mind and spiritual intelligence are the definite signs that a man can take the second initiation, whilst spiritual perception or intuitive instinct signifies preparedness for the Transfiguration, the third initiation.”
Methods for Awakening the Intuition
There are many ways in which the intuition can be drawn into activity, and one of the most useful and potent is the study and interpretation of symbols, according to Bailey. Symbols are the outer and visible forms of the inner spiritual realities, and when facility in discovering the reality behind any specific form has been gained, that very fact will indicate the awakening of the intuition. The study of symbols tends to bring this about and when carried out with faithfulness and diligence, will produce three effects: “It trains in the power to penetrate behind the form and to arrive at the subjective reality. It tends to bring about a close integration between soul-mind-brain, and when that is brought about, the inflow of the intuition and, consequently, of illumination and truth becomes more rapidly possible. It will put a strain upon certain un-awakened areas in the brain and arouse into activity the brain cells there found, and this is the first stage in the experience of the aspirant.” “The buddhic plane is the higher correspondence of the astral or emotional plane, the plane of sensitive awareness through a felt identification with the object of attention or attraction. It becomes evident therefore that if the intuitional faculty is to be brought into activity through the study of symbols, the student must feel with, or be in some way identified with, the qualitative nature of the symbol, with the nature of that reality which the symbolic form veils.”
Another useful method in awakening intuition is meditation. That which is the opposite pole of illusion is, the intuition, remembering that illusion imprisons a man upon the mental plane and surrounds him entirely with man-made thoughtforms “The intuition is that recognition of reality which becomes possible as glamour and illusion disappear. An intuitive reaction to truth will take place when—along a particular line of approach to truth—the disciple has succeeded in quieting the thought-form-making propensities of the mind, so that light can flow directly, and without any deviation, from the higher spiritual worlds. The intuition can begin to make its presence felt when glamour no longer grips the lower man, and a man's low or high desires, interpreted emotionally or self-centeredly, can no longer come between his brain consciousness and the soul. Fleeting moments of this high freedom come to all true aspirants at times, during their life struggle. They have then an intuitive flash of understanding.” “The flashes of intuition are at first simply vivid flashes of illumination, breaking forth into the mind consciousness and disappearing almost instantaneously. But they come with increasing frequency as the habit of meditation is cultivated and persist for increasingly long periods as stability of the mind is achieved. Gradually the light shines forth in a continuous stream until the aspirant walks in the full light of day.”
A question that may facilitate further understanding is how the Soul relates to the Spiritual Triad. As intuition is an intrinsic feature of both, this is of relevance. A section on intuition in Theosophy may then very well end with a quote from H. P. Blavatsky, which is not without intellectual sting. She opposes materialistic scientists, who can be fought solely with their own weapons - those of controversy and argument, and advocate Hermes: “We hold to Hermes and his Wisdom - in its universal character; they - to Aristotle as against intuition and the experience of the ages, fancying that Truth is the exclusive property of the Western world. Hence the disagreement. As Hermes says, Knowledge differs much from sense; for sense is of things that surmount it, but Knowledge (gyi) is the end of sense - i.e., of the illusion of our physical brain and its intellect; thus emphasizing the contrast between the laboriously acquired knowledge of the senses and mind (manas), and the intuitive omniscience of the Spiritual divine Soul - Buddhi.” Again, we can summarize our main findings in a table, which align with the findings in previous chapters.
|Plan & Purpose||‘Chaos’|
|Spiritual Triad & Soul||Personality|
|Light & Illumination||Shadow & Darkness|
|Negates Barriers||Build Barriers|
|Unifies, Includes & Identifies||Separates|
|Meaning & Wisdom||Knowledge|
|Pineal Gland||Pituitary Gland?|
|Sixth Rootrace||Fifth Rootrace|
|Direct and Correct Action||Indirect & Incorrect Action|
 As there are so many books, the titles, not the years, are included.
 Bailey, Initiation Human and Solar, p. 114.
 Bailey, Glamour: A World Problem, p. 195.
 Ibid. p. 194.
 Bailey, Discipleship in the New Age, vol. 1, p. 755-756.
 Cornford, 1955, p. 227.
 Bailey, Discipleship in the New Age, vol. 1, p. 755-756.
 Bailey, Letters on Occult Meditation, p. 215.
 Bailey, A Treatise on Cosmic Fire, p. 113.
 Ibid. p. 328.
 Ibid. p. 1200.
 Ibid. p. 574.
 Bailey, Esoteric Astrology, p. 663.
 Ibid. p. 132.
 Bailey, Esoteric Healing, p. 599.
 Bailey, Esoteric Psychology, Vol. 2, p. 177-178.
 Bailey, Cosmic Fire, p. 419.
 Ibid. p. 338. Leo is a first ray sign, eventually expressing the will of the indweller.
 Ibid. p. 389.
 Bailey, Esoteric Astrology, p. 517.
 Bailey, Cosmic Fire, p. 347, 376.
 Ibid. p. 298.
 Bailey, Esoteric Astrology, p. 356.
 Ibid. p. 663.
 Bailey, Cosmic Fire, p. 308, 339.
 Ibid. p. 339-340.
 Ibid. p. 353, 703.
 Bailey, White Magic, p. 411.
 Bailey, Esoteric Astrology, p. 348.
 Ibid. p. 614.
 Bailey, Glamour A World Problem, p. 195.
 Bailey, Discipleship in the New Age, Vol. 2, p. 258.
 Ibid. Vol. 1. p. 25.
 Bailey, Glamour – A World Problem, p. 136, 171.
 Bailey, The Rays and the Initiaitions, p. 131. See also Glamour, p. 135-136.
 Bailey, Discipleship in the New Age, p. 25.
 Bailey, Glamour – A World problem, p. 3.
 Ibid. p. 3-4.
 Ibid. p. 4-7.
 Bergson, 1949, p. 51.
 Bailey, Discipleship in the New Age, Vol. 1. p. 25.
 Bailey, Ibid. p. 279.
 Bailey, Telepathy and the Etheric Vehicle, p. 189.
 Bailey, From Intellect to Intuition, p. 164.
 Bailey, Externalization of the Hierarchy, p. 98.
 Bailey, From Intellect to Intuition, p. 151.
 Bailey, A Treatise on White Magic, p. 16-17.
 Ibid. p. 17-18.
 Ibid. p. 70, 167.
 Bailey, Esoteric Astrology, p. 422.
 Bailey, From Intellect to Intuition, p. 187-189.
 Bailey, Glamour – A World Problem, p. 2.
 Ibid. p. 195.
 Bailey, From Intellect to Intuition, p. 166.
 Bailey, Discipleship in the New Age, Vol. 2, p. 267.
 Bailey, Glamour – A World Problem, p. 7.
 Ibid. p. 9.
 Ibid. p. 67.
 Bailey, The Light of the Soul, p. 317.
 Blavtsky, The Secret Doctrine, Vol. 1. p. 279. Theosophical University Press Online Edition.