By C. W. Leadbeater

WHAT THEOSOPHY IS "There is a college of philosophy nonetheless in lifestyles of which smooth tradition has misplaced sight." In those phrases Mr. A.P. Sinnett all started his publication, The Occult international, the 1st well known exposition of Theosophy, released thirty years in the past. [Namely in 1881.] throughout the years that experience handed because then, many hundreds of thousands have discovered knowledge in that faculty, but to the bulk its teachings are nonetheless unknown, and so they may give basically the vaguest of replies to the question, "What is Theosophy?" books exist already which solution that query: Mr. Sinnett's Esoteric Buddhism and Dr. Besant's the traditional knowledge. i've got no considered moving into festival with these ordinary works; what I wish is to give a press release, as transparent and easy as i will make it, that may be considered as introductory to them.

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Some men succeed in shaking themselves free of this etheric envelope in a few moments; others rest within it for hours, days or even weeks. Nor is it certain that, when the man is free from this, he will at once become conscious of the astral world. For there is in him a good deal of the lowest kind of astral matter, so that a shell of this may be made around him. But he may be quite unable to use that matter. If he has lived a reasonably decent life he is little in the habit of employing it or responding to its vibrations, and he cannot instantly acquire this habit.

LEADBEATER A TEXTBOOK OF THEOSOPHY The dead man has the astral body of his living friend obviously before him, so he cannot think of him as lost; but while the friend is awake, the dead man will not be able to make any impression upon him, for the consciousness of the friend is then in the physical world, and his astral body is being used only as a bridge. The dead man cannot therefore communicate with his friend, nor can he read his friend’s higher thoughts; but he will see by the change in colour in the astral body any emotion which that friend may feel, and with a little practice and observation he may easily learn to read all those thoughts of his friend which have in them anything of self or of desire.

If the man yields himself to them, such promptings grow stronger and stronger until at last he feels as though he could not resist them, and identifies himself with them—which is exactly what this curious half-life in the particles of the astral body wants him to do. At the death of the physical body this vague astral consciousness is alarmed. It realizes that its existence as a separated mass is menaced, and it takes instinctive steps to defend itself and to maintain its position as long as possible.

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A Textbook of Theosophy by C. W. Leadbeater


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