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Esoteric Psychology II - Chapter II - The Ray of Personality - Problems of Disciples and Mystics
1. Stimulation produces the awakening of the lower psychic powers if the incoming energy is directed to the solar plexus or to the throat center. It produces the intense activities of the centers and this can, in the early stages, [535] cause definite psychic trouble. In illustration of this I would like to indicate the general nature of the difficulties to which the mystic can be physically prone:
  1. The awakening of the head center can produce serious trouble if brought about prematurely and even lead at times to insanity. Inflammation of certain areas of the brain and certain forms of brain tumors can be induced by a too rapid inflow of the highest form of energy which a man can receive prior to initiation. This takes place, however, only in those cases where the man is a highly developed person and of a mental type. In other cases of premature soul inflow, the energy pours through the opening at the top of the head and finds its way to some one or other of the centers, according to the ray type or stage of unfoldment. Where the greatest attention of the man's consciousness and life force is focused (even if unconsciously) to that point the incoming energy will almost automatically flow.
  2. The awakening of the ajna center which is, as we have seen, primarily the result of the development of a man's personality to the point of integration, can (if the energies involved are not correctly controlled) lead to serious eye trouble, to many aural difficulties, to various forms of neuritis, headache, migraine, and nerve difficulties in various parts of the body. It can produce also many difficulties connected with the pituitary body and psychological trouble emanating from this important controlling gland as well as definite physical trouble.
  3. The awakening of the heart center (which is going on very rapidly at this time) is responsible for many [536] forms of heart trouble and for the various difficulties connected with the autonomic nervous system, particularly in relation to the vagus nerve. The prevalence of various forms of heart disease at this time, particularly among the intelligentsia, professional and financial classes, is due to the awakening of this center and to the discovery of an unrecognized capacity in humanity to become group conscious, and to undertake group service. The thymus gland, which controls in a peculiar manner the life aspect in man, is closely connected with the heart center, as might be expected. This gland must eventually become more active in the adult than is now the case, just as the pineal gland in the coming human races will no longer be an atrophied organism with its true functions not understood and comprehended, but it will be an active and important part of man's equipment. This will take place normally and naturally as man learns to function as a soul and not just as a personality.
  4. Again, much trouble among people is due at this time to the awakening of the throat center. This center governs and conditions the thyroid gland and the para-thyroids. It can produce, when unduly developed or prematurely awakened, hyperthyroidism with its attendant difficulties and its often dangerous effects upon the heart and upon the metabolism of the body. The psychological effects are well-known and recognized. These difficulties are increased and this higher creative center unduly stimulated and rendered a danger instead of an aid to expression by the enforced celibacy of many people, owing to the present unfortunate economic conditions. These conditions are such that people refrain from marriage and there is consequently [537] the lack of opportunity to use (or to misuse) the energy flowing through the sacral center. Mystics are likewise prone to this difficulty. The throat center is not used creatively nor is the sacral center turned to its proper uses. The sacral energy is carried prematurely to the throat where it produces an intense stimulation. The equipment of the man concerned has not yet reached the point where it can be turned to creative work in any field. There is no creative expression of any kind as the development of the man does not permit him to be creative in the higher sense. The Swiss people, though highly intelligent, are not creative in this sense. The energy flowing through the thyroid gland is not used in creative art, music or writing in any outstanding manner, and hence the prevalence of goiter and thyroid difficulty. There is much energy flowing through and to the thyroid gland and, as yet, but little use made of it.
  5. The increased activity and stimulation of the solar plexus center today is a most fruitful source of trouble. It produces a great deal of the nervous difficulties to which women are particularly prone, and many of the stomach ills and liver troubles of the time, as well as intestinal difficulties. One of the most powerful sources of cancer in various parts of the body (except in the head and face) can esoterically be traced to the congestion of the energy of the solar plexus center. This congestion has a general and widespread effect. Difficulties arising from the awakening of the heart center and the solar plexus center (for the two are closely allied and have a reciprocal action for a long time in the mystical experience) produce also a powerful effect upon the blood stream. They are connected with [538] the life principle which is ever "carried upon the waves of desire" (as the ancient writings put it) and this, when prevented from full expression, through lack of development or other causes, leads to cancerous areas in the body wherever there is a weakness in the bodily tissue.
  6. The awakening of the sacral center is of such ancient origin that it is not possible at this time to trace the true history of the development of the difficulties connected with sexual expression, nor is it desirable. I have dealt with the subject of sex in my other treatises, particularly in A Treatise on White Magic. I call attention to it only because in the course of the mystical life there is often a period of sexual difficulty if the mystic has not previously learnt sexual control and unless it has assumed balanced proportions to his other life activities and natural instincts in his consciousness. Else, as he touches the heights of spiritual contact and brings in the energy of his soul to the personality, that energy will pass straight down to the sacral center and not be arrested at the throat center, as it rightly should be. When this occurs, then perversions of the sex life may take place, or an undue importance may be attached to the sex activity, or the sexual imagination can be dangerously stimulated, leading to lack of control and to many of the difficulties known to physicians and psychologists. The result is ever an over-activity of the sex life in some form or another.
  7. The awakening of the center at the base of the spine during the final stages of the higher mystical experience carries with it its own dangers. These definitely affect the spine and consequently all the nerves which branch out in all directions from the spinal column. [539] The raising of the kundalini force - if brought about ignorantly and prematurely - may produce the rapid burning through of the protective web of etheric matter which separates the various areas of the body (controlled by the seven centers) from each other. This causes serious nervous trouble, inflammation of the tissues, spinal disease, and brain trouble.

I have here hinted at some of the difficulties in an effort to give you a general picture of the problem of the mystic.

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