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Esoteric Psychology II - Chapter II - The Ray of Personality - The Appropriation of the Bodies
  1. At the stage of discipleship, when the individuality and the personality are beginning to merge,
    1. The two head centers are becoming increasingly active.
    2. The petals are all vibrant, and the dynamic life of the soul is beginning to sweep the center of the lotus into activity.
    3. The light of the petals in the centers below the diaphragm is beginning to dim, but the center of the lotus is becoming more and more brilliant and living.

All the above process takes much time, and it includes the Path of Probation or Purification and the Path of Discipleship.

  1. At the stage of initiation when complete at-one-ment is established.
    1. The four centers above the diaphragm become dominantly active.
    2. The center at the base of the spine comes into awakened activity and the three fires of the matter aspect, of the soul, and of the spirit (fire by friction, solar fire, and electric fire) merge and blend.
    3. All the centers in the body of the initiate can be intensified electrically at will and used simultaneously, or one at a time, according to the demand and the need which must be met by the initiate.

All the above takes place progressively upon the Path of Initiation. This same truth can also be expressed in terms of the rays:

At the stage of Individualization, the rays governing the physical and emotional bodies are dominant. The soul ray is scarcely felt and only flickers with a dim light at the heart of each lotus.

At the stage of Intellection, the ray of the mental body [3o8] comes into activity. This second process is itself divided into two stages:

  1. That in which the lower concrete mind is developing.
  2. That in which the man becomes an integrated, coordinated person.

At each of these latter two stages, the rays of the lower nature become increasingly powerful. Self-consciousness is developed, and then the personality becomes clearer and clearer, and the three elementals of the lower nature, the force of the so-called "three lunar Lords" (the triple energies of the integrated personality) come steadily under the control of the ray of the personality. At this stage, therefore, four rays are active in the man, four streams of energy make him what he is and the ray of the soul is beginning, though very faintly, to make its presence felt, producing the conflict which all thinkers recognize.

At the stage of Discipleship, the soul ray comes into increased conflict with the personality ray and the great battle of the pairs of opposites begins. The soul ray or energy slowly dominates the personality ray, as it in its turn has dominated the rays of the three lower bodies.

At the stage of Initiation, the domination continues and at the third initiation the highest kind of energy which a man can express in this solar system - that of the monad, begins to control.

At the stage of individualization, a man comes into being; he begins to exist. At the stage of intellection, the personality emerges with clarity and becomes naturally expressive. At the stage of discipleship, he becomes magnetic. At the stage of initiation, he becomes dynamic.

In reference to the pairs of opposites and their conflict, it might be of interest to note the following facts: [309]

Students would do well to bear in mind that there are several pairs of opposites with which they have sequentially to deal. This is a point oft forgotten. Emphasis is usually laid upon the pairs of opposites to be found upon the astral plane, whilst those to be found upon the physical plane and the mental levels are omitted from the recognition of the aspirant. Yet it is essential that these other pairs of opposites receive due recognition.

Etheric energy, focused in an individual etheric body, passes through two stages prior to the period of discipleship:

  1. The stage wherein it assimilates the force latent in the dense physical form - the energy of atomic substance, thus producing a definite fusing and blending. This causes the animal nature to conform entirely to the inner impulses - emanating from the world of pranic influence, where the entirely undeveloped man is concerned, and from the lower astral world where the more developed or the average man is concerned. It is this truth which lies behind the statement frequently made that the dense physical body is an automaton.
  2. The moment, however, that an inner orientation towards the world of higher values takes place, then the etheric or vital force is brought into conflict with the lowest aspect of man, the dense physical body, and the battle of the lower pair of opposites takes place.

It is interesting to note that it is during this stage that the emphasis is laid upon physical disciplines, upon such controlling factors as total abstinence, celibacy and vegetarianism, and upon physical hygienes and exercises. Through these, the control of the life by the form, the lowest expression of the third aspect of divinity, can be offset and the man set free for the true battle of the pairs of opposites. [310]

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