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The Yoga Sutras of Patanjali - Book 1 - The Problem of Union
26. Ishvara (the Gurudeva), being unlimited by time condition, is the teacher of the primeval Lords.

Since the conditions of time and space existed there have been those who have achieved omniscience, those whose germ of knowledge has been subjected to proper culture and thus developed, until it flowered forth into the full glory of the liberated soul. This condition became possible through certain factors:

  1. The identity of each individual soul with the Oversoul.
  2. The attractive force of that Oversoul as it drew the separated soul of all things gradually back into Itself. This is the force of evolution itself, the great attractive agent which recalls the outgoing points of divine Life, the units of consciousness, back to their source. It involves the response of the individual soul to cosmic soul force.
  3. The intensive training given towards the climax by the occult Hierarchy whereby souls receive a stimulation and vitalization which enables them to make more rapid progress.

The occult student must remember that this process has gone on in the wheels and cycles preceding our planet Earth. The primeval Lords, or Sages, are those great Adepts Who - having "tasted experience" under the Law of Rebirth, were initiated into the mysteries by the one Initiator, the representative in our planet of the [53] Oversoul. They in their turn became teachers and initiators into the mysteries.

The one Master is found within; it is the soul, the inner ruler, the thinker on his own plane. This one Master is a corporate part of the Whole, of the All-Soul. Each expansion of consciousness which a man undergoes fits him to be a Master to those who have not taken a similar expansion. Therefore - mastery being achieved - there is nothing (speaking in terms of the human kingdom) to be found except Masters who are likewise disciples. All are learners and all are teachers, differing only in degree of realization. For instance:

  1. Aspirants to the Path are disciples of lesser disciples,
  2. Probationers on the Path are disciples of higher ones,
  3. Accepted disciples are the disciples of an adept and of a Master,
  4. An adept is the disciple of a Master,
  5. A Master is the disciple of a Mahatma,
  6. The Mahatmas are the disciples of still higher initiates,
  7. These in turn are the disciples of the Christ or of that official who is at the head of the teaching department,
  8. The head of the teaching department is a disciple of the Lord of the World,
  9. The Lord of the World is the disciple of one of the three planetary spirits who represent the three major aspects, [54]
  10. These are again disciples of the solar Logos.

It will be apparent therefore to the careful student how interdependent all are and how the achievement of one will profoundly affect the entire body. Discipleship can be regarded as a generic term covering all those states or conditions of being in the fourth and fifth kingdoms (human and spiritual) wherein certain expansions of consciousness are brought about through specific training.

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