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Dane Rudhyar's Occult Preparations for a New Age. Image Copyright 2004 by Michael R. Meyer.

by Dane Rudhyar, 1975

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A Planetary Approach to Occultism amd Its Source

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To Michael R. Meyer
and Nancy Kleban
In warm appreciation
and friendship.

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This title was first published by Quest Books, 1975.

Cover for the online edition copyright © 2004
by Michael R. Meyer.

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Two Polarities of Spiritual Life - 4

The creative artist, who does not merely imitate and, with a relatively few superficial and personal modifications, reproduce the patterns which his culture and his teachers in school have impressed upon his mind, can be considered an avataric being at the sociocultural level. He is one insofar as a power transcending the ego-controlled field of his personality inspires or truly in-spirits him; and this means insofar as he exteriorizes in concrete forms-musical, plastic, or literary — what is actually needed at that particular time and place. These forms have to be acceptable at least to the most open minds and feeling-natures of his contemporaries or their progeny; and they are acceptable if they truly answer such a need, and when at least a few persons have become, or can be made to become, aware of what the need is. Nothing can be poured into a vessel totally full. Unless a group of individuals in a community have experienced some degree of inner emptiness, their collective consciousness cannot be filled with the power of a new aspect of the spirit. They must have been ploughed and harrowed by anxiety, loneliness, alienation, and deep suffering — even if such suffering has no apparent cause — in order to be able to receive the new seed.

There are creative artists whose mission it is to make concrete and give public form to a style of living, feeling, and thinking that through them, rather than in them, finds its perfect flowering. They indeed represent the flowering of a culture. They essentialize its fundamental character. They abstract its purest quality out of the perhaps heavily obscured or confused patterns of their society's way of life; they extract its meaning by selecting and emphasizing its most revealing features. They may be able to evoke the "soul" of the culture; and great art is always evocative rather than descriptive. Johann Sebastian Bach is an outstanding example of such a type of creative personality.

Only men of a lesser stature are content merely to faithfully depict in a quasi-photographic manner what is; they may be outstanding craftsmen, but they cannot be considered avataric beings, even though — or perhaps just because — they receive great and immediate applause. They may be outstanding personalities, but not transpersonal beings. In the same manner, a religious personage at the head or within the rank of an organized religious institution can be a great personality, a perfect exemplar of the ideal promoted by the religion, an excellent organizer; but this would not make him an avatar, unless he came in the midst of a widespread crisis, as one needed to restate the perverted ideal in its purity and to purify and reorganize a drastically shaken institution, whose cycle of validity is not yet exhausted. This would imply a transformation, but one that would specifically come under the category of "reform."

It is usually stated that the great Avatar is entirely self-taught and is born with an innate knowledge of his function and destiny; but a good deal of glamour and incomplete understanding may be involved in such a claim. The Avatar's mind, being widely open to the collective consciousness of the race of society which, at his birth, has reached the end of its cycle, is able to use whatever is required by the actions he is meant to perform. He does not know and learn simply for the sake of knowing of or achieving a social position. His actions "know" what they need to know in order to proceed according to the intrinsic rhythm of the Avatar's destiny. As an "emissary" of Manu or some cosmic spiritual Power beyond the field of the Earth, or even of the solar system — all that he needs is available, but not to him as a personal possession. It is available to the power that expresses itself through him. That knowledge may not be repeatable. It really does not involve memory, any more than does an animal's instinctual knowledge of how to build a nest or paralyze an insect which its progeny will require as food.

The believer in a personal kind of reincarnation process will say that any obviously inborn knowledge "proves" that the avataric person — including the child prodigy who is a born composer, mathematician, or chess player — had acquired in a past incarnation that knowledge and the ability effectively to use it. This is undoubtedly a way of explaining the phenomenon. Yet is it the only and the deeper way? It is a way which individualizes a process that most likely has its root in a special relationship between the abnormally knowledgeable youth and the one Mind of Man. In the life of any avataric being it is Man — or rather one of the many aspects of Man's multidimensional potentials of being — that acts, speaks or intones the keynote of a new cycle of the planetary evolution of humanity-as-a-whole.

It is also Manu — the particular aspect of Man that a particular race or emerging community of human beings needs for survival or expansion — that acts through the performer of great deeds, making of him a "hero" for generations yet to come. In the most general sense of the term, a hero is a man (or a woman) who, in a totally consistent and significant "style," performs the acts of destiny which, at the deepest level of his being (though most often not in his ego-consciousness) he has accepted and assumed. A heroic performance is at least relatively a "Perfect" (i.e. achieved through and through) act or series of acts. It is the performance of a role which releases the creative potentiality inherent in a specific moment in the great play of man's evolution. In this performance the performer, having totally identified himself with the role, is pouring his life-substance into the action. He is the action as well as the actor; and he is also, in a sense, that which is acted upon, because spiritually speaking the three are one. The need, the perfected adapted answer, and the answering constitute but one moment in the cyclic drama of existence, however large or small this cycle is conceived or realized to be.

Often the hero displays not only great courage, indomitable persistence in the face of ever renewed obstacles, and strength of character and magnanimity in victory, but also intense passions and what, in lesser men, would be called pride. Yet these seemingly negative or personal characteristics should be seen in somewhat different light than when present in ordinary human beings who are not open, as the true hero is, to relatively boundless horizons of power and, in some cases, knowledge. If there is pride in the performance that produced results of major collective significance, this pride may hide a profound humility before the inner Source whence flowed the energy that not only powered the deed, but steeled the stubborn resistance and loyalty to the envisioned goal. It is only in the more banal type of actors that the proud evaluation of the value of the performance spills upon the ego of the person playing the role. In any performer who realizes that he himself and his entire life are but a form or ritual mask through which a "god" (or focusing center for the universal Life force) operates, there can only be an exalted sense of vicarious glory — a feeling of participation in a sacred drama or rite, before whose greatness the small quasi-organic pride of work well done reverently bows.

Reverence is the very soul of true heroism; reverence before the supreme and always mysterious Source of the power and the intensity that makes the actor vibrate often seemingly far beyond any conceivable natural strength. The true hero, either at the moment of doing or in a deep, unexplainable but constant manner, is aware of a mystery within. He may not want to acknowledge before others what to him is the quintessence and sacred center of his whole being; but without such a deep awareness of that which, in him, is divine root strength, he would not be able to go on acting in a world which he knows he must transform and, to this end, in which he must ceaselessly fight the institutionalized inertia, so that a new life may surge on the ruins of prejudices and tradition-worshipping fears.

After his death, the hero's deeds, his life and his appearance may become immortalized into a style of behavior. He may remain an ever-inspiring example of revelatory thinking filled with the contagious fervor of living consecrated to an ideal or divine Presence. As this occurs the avataric being has become himself a Word of power, a mantram which millions of others may intone in moments of crisis, anguish, or uncontrollable despair. But while ordinary men glorify and perhaps worship the hero as a person, he himself has always known, by a kind of uncontrovertible knowing, that he is only a ritual mask, a personage, in the great lila of the universe, and a servant of cyclic purpose, an answer to a collective human need.

Avatars, heroes, creative geniuses, cannot be regarded as saints, even less as mystics; nor are they occultists or Masters in the usual sense of these much abused terms. They do not claim impersonality or the kind of purity that obeys the laws established for the sake of structuring a particular society or perpetuating institutions. They are not "fallen Angels" or gods in disguise. They are links between the divine and the human. They are channels of communication and transmission, and as such they are like the words of any language, the great symbols of any culture. They are utterances of destiny through human bodies and individual minds that — genetically as well as the end-result of a long line of incarnation — have the capacity to respond to a divine will and to form means of communication through which the human masses may be reached.

Theirs is the transpersonal way, the way through, the way of sacramental deeds and power-condensing utterances. It is also the way of compassion; for only the love of mankind can give them the warmth that fascinates others — unless they have fallen into the tragic and essentially desperate way of those magnificently dark egos whose cosmic destiny it is to destroy those that resist even the fascination radiated by the avatars and, unable to love, bind themselves to the divine by the power of absolute hatred.

Hate too is relatedness. Every release of potentiality has its dark aspect. But he that is rooted in love fulfills time and destiny, while time crushes whoever has repudiated love and refuses to acknowledge and revere the divine Source whence flow all noble deeds and beautiful loves.

By permission of Leyla Rudhyar Hill
Copyright © 1975 by Dane Rudhyar
All Rights Reserved.

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