3rd lecture of the General Occult Class, March 9, 1922, Thursday, Sofia.
(Praise, O, my soul, God the Lord, sung very quietly)
Silent prayer. 7:10 p.m.
Good order, system, and discipline are expected of all of you, yet I don't wish to impose my trill, I want every one of you, himself, to apply discipline in his feelings and thoughts. If you cannot discipline yourselves, it would be better not to come to class. And if someone takes the liberty of coming without being able to discipline himself, I do not accept responsibility for him. I expect absolute harmony! Outside the class you may criticize me, yet here in the classroom if someone does so, I will not be responsible for the consequences. If someone enters a church he must realize that it is God’s shrine. When he comes to school he must keep in mind that it is a school. If you come here to compare your knowledge, to prove how much you know, it would be better for you not come at all. I believe that that we all want to have a friendly relationship. We can be friends only if we obey the laws of absolute love, absolute wisdom, and absolute righteousness. These laws apply equally to all. In this respect the law is absolute. There exists absolute as well as relative love; absolute and relative wisdom; absolute and relative truth; absolute and relative righteousness; absolute and relative good. We are guided by the absolute and not by the relative. The relative exists in the world. We must realize that in the absolute exists only one opinion, in the relative exist many different opinions. You must know that only this way we may receive the help of heaven. Heaven is a place of order, system and discipline. In heaven there are no laws or policemen such as one finds on earth. Everyone has the law written in himself - in his heart, his mind, or his spirit, according to the degree of development of the particular being.
My desire is to free you from the unnecessary sufferings and difficulties. If a pupil has a corn or any other sore on his foot or if his stomach bothers him, can he be attentive in class and learn his less well? He must be free. If the pupil is hungry, if for three or four days he has not had a piece of bread, would it be possible for him to study? He must have food, clothing, he must have everything which he needs. Therefore, if you come here with your worries you are not welcome. This is not an orphanage, nor is it a place of salvation, when you come here on Sundays it may be considered a home for salvation, but now it is a school and we need only healthy students. He who is sick should stay away; he who is healthy may come. All of you may be healthy. If you are sick you may be excused, yet those who are sick should stay outside. In a school of the occult the students can become sick by themselves and they can become healthy by themselves. Now I will phrase a question in this way: when you came from God were you sick? You were healthy. Therefore, whose fault is it that you are sick? Your own.
When you came from God, were you ignorant or were you learned? You were learned and not ignorant. Your present lack of knowledge indicates that you have wasted all that which you had. This way, you have become poor on the physical plane.
Now we will enter the positive life. We will forget the distant past and the distant future and become acquainted with the present. When a writer decides to write a novel or a short story, he must have two objects, two heroes - a man and a woman. These heroes are the center and around them he arranges all the other characters, and, in this way, his story becomes interesting. How I ask: why does he need these two heroes? The hero man implies the hero woman, and the hero woman implies the hero man. If you do away with one of the heroes, the other automatically disappears. Man, too, has two heroes in himself. Who are they? I will tell you: the first hero is the mind, and the second, the heart. Around these heroes the author, the spirit, arranges the remaining characters. The spirit chooses his two heroes, the mind and the heart, and upon them he builds up the whole story, around them are arranged all other characters. The author determines where the heroism of the hero and the heroine lies and assigns to them certain moral qualities. For example, he attributes to the hero power, boldness, and resolution, so that he may succeed. He ascribes to the heroine great sufferings so that she may endure. He makes her face the greatest temptations, and she resists them. He casts for a negative role. Well, now, what should be the qualities of your mind? Your mind must be strong, bold, and fearless! If the mind says, "this is not for me", it deprives itself of heroism. If your mind seeks only for the easy ways in life, you can become only a sea star or a sponge, nothing more! If an angel descends from heaven to observe people, he recognizes them according to their minds, who is seeking for what. If a pupil who enters the school seeks only the easiest way, nothing will become of him. If when he reaches difficult problems he walks around them and has someone else solve them for him, and then enters the class with someone else's solutions, we already know what becomes of such a pupil. All those who rule in the world at present have come from a school where they had to solve only easy problems.
What must be the qualities of the heart of the heroine? Her mind must be powerful, bold, and fearless, and her heart must possess plasticity, endurance, and patience. These are qualities which the disciple must acquire. No one is born with these qualities; one must acquire them. There are favorable conditions for this, and you must acquire the qualities so that you can understand the great nature.
If a hero has wavered five or six times, if he has turned away from his vocation, what do you think will happen to him? He has lost benevolence of the heroine forever, and everything is finished for him. The same is true if the heroine wavers from her principles, from her vocation, she too loses her heroism. One cannot rely on mercy. This would be a different question. In mathematics you can solve a problem only one way: there are no exceptions. It may that only one mistake, only one number is wrong. In a large number which is repeated many times in the calculations, this mistake may cause great harm.
When you contemplate upon your hero (your mind) and your heroine (your heart), you will arrive at the question: what about the human will? In my opinion the human will is the child of the human mind and the human heart. Therefore if a man has will power it means that the mind and the heart are productive, that they have worked according to God's law. If will exists this indicates that the mind and the heart have walked on the new path. If there exists no will it indicates that they are sterile, that these people have lived a sinful life. This is the answer, for in the spiritual world a man without will is considered degenerate. This is the definition of the human will. It does not correspond to the definition in contemporary philosophy.
To be able to understand your mind and your heart as well as your will, you need to be acquainted with four elements. These are the so-called temperaments. There exist the nervous or intellectual temperament which belongs to the brain; the sanguine temperament, which belongs to the lungs, to the respiratory system; the choleric temperament, which belongs to the muscular and bone systems; and the phlegmatic temperament, which belongs to the stomach.
When the nervous or intellectual temperament is excellent, the thoughts are fluent, the mind is highly productive. There is no darkness in the mind; it works quick and is deep. This is the case only when the temperament is first class. There are three qualities in each temperament; first class, middles class, and low class. If the temperament of the mind is of a low class, the person needs to work for a long time. Because in this temperament the brain and the nerves have the main role, the person will need to learn to regulate his electricity. The brain is the location of electricity. Sometimes we can make an experiment. This is a very broad field. The different parts of the brain accumulate different kinds of energies. For example, an experiment can be made by which particular energies can be given or taken away, and the mental state of the person will change immediately. If a person suffers from anxiety, is afraid to stay alone at home, has the urge to run away, and a person who is stronger and has much courage places his hand on a certain part of the head, where the center of fear is located, this person will experience fear. This indicates that you may become faint-hearted or courageous. These are currents inside the brain. When we come in contact with these currents, a certain movement is produced in the respective centers and then an excitement comes about in the consciousness which is accompanied by the feeling of fear. For example: a person may be compassionate or kind-hearted. This energy is located again in a certain place in the brain. If he has decided to perform a good deed and a person with negative qualities who is not compassionate, comes and places his hand on the head of the first person on the place where the canter of compassion is, this person will lose the desire to do the good dead. The opposite is also true, if a person does not want to give alms, and another who is very compassionate places his hand where the center of compassion is, the desire to give will be born in that person.
If someone says that he does not feel like doing something, I ask him whether this reluctance is his own idea. You should know whether a thought is your own or someone else’s. Someone says, "I am not well disposed." This notion is untrue. The indisposition may be foreign to you. If every day you experience someone else's indisposition, what kind of experience will you gain? Ho, you must keep only that which is inside of you, only that which is yours, only that which has passed through your mind, has been approved by your heart and applied by your will. Only with this can you work. I want that which you study in this school to pass through your mind, your heart, and your will. I have no intention of merely persuading you. This thought is far from my mind. In this great school of the occult, experience has the greatest importance. The food recommends itself. I will not recommend it. I say, try out this food, you may judge the food by its affect. I want you yourselves to make up your mind whether the teaching is good.
The first temperament, the intellectual, I call "dynamic". Therefore the head is dangerous, it is a dynamo. It is like a weapon. He who has a strong head but is not a good person may cause great harm if he uses this weapon.
The second temperament, the sanguine, which I also call "gaseous", has the property to expand. Because it involves expansiveness of his dynamic power, the form of the head of a man who has this temperament must become larger. This temperament, too, can be developed and breathing is used as a means for its development. Those whose breathing is feeble, who have a narrow chest or whose lungs are not well developed, have narrow veins, and in such people this temperament is of low quality As a result their intellect does not function well either. You must attempt to develop your lungs and thus your nervous system. The sanguine temperament involves the lungs and the blood circulation.
After the first two types comes the phlegmatic temperament, which some people call the "vital" temperament. I describe it as cumulative, that compresses. It is the temperament of the stomach. When a person has a normal stomach, eating is moderate. Therefore, this temperament is necessary to accumulate energy. Those who are deprived of the vital temperament often become dry like flowers who have not enough soil around their roots. It is not good for man to be fat, but it is also not good for the stomach to be too small. In this temperament, the size of the stomach is of less importance than its formation, on which depends the ability to eat properly. In order to improve your stomach, you must eat slowly and you must never overeat.
Last of all comes the choleric temperament — the temperament of the muscular and the bone systems, or the temperament of the physical man. I call it also the "executive". It carries out the executive part of the human life. Everything that has to be done in the world gets done through this temperament. People in whom this temperament dominates have strong muscles and bones which are massive and slightly crude. Their tongues are slightly intemperate; they cannot argue only with words, but their hands and feet participate too.
Each temperament has its field of action. When the choleric temperament dominates in a man, the respective centers in the brain develop in this case around the ears. Each external center has a counterpart in the brain and there these parts become developed. In the sanguine temperament the upper part of the brain, the imagination, is well developed. In the phlegmatic temperament the temples are developed, and when such a person smells food, the pleasant wish to eat arises in him. When the intellectual system dominates, the formation of the forehead is very pretty.
You must begin to study the temperaments and to develop them. If you are not able to build a certain temperament, to implant in it the respective qualities, you will be incomplete. A patient person is one who has a vital or phlegmatic temperament. Even a well developed person cannot be patient of he loses the qualities of the vital temperament. He cannot be quick if the sanguine temperament is not developed in him. His thought, too, is not alert, cannot grasp things quickly if the nervous temperament is not well developed. Before anything else, you must begin to cultivate your temperaments.
In relation to the temperaments, there are certain measures. Yet if I tell you these measures and you are not well informed about the respective laws, you may confuse the concepts. For example, the width of the lower part of the nose and the region about the temples indicates how far your vital temperament is developed. Between all parts exists correspondences. The width of the nostrils corresponds to the width of the hand, as well as to the face. Your fingers are formed according to the formation of your stomach; the way your lungs are developed will correspond to your hand and to the soft parts of the fingers, which represent the lungs. He who understands this will know what condition his stomach is in when ha looks at the different parts of your fingers. He will know everything. In this respect, nothing is hidden. And you as pupils have very serious work to accomplish.
Now, I want to point out that in this school you will use only your excess time for work. I do not want you to neglect your homes. How much time can you spare? One hour, half an hour, or more? At least one hour. If you could spare more than an hour that is better, but you should not neglect your other work and run into difficulties. A diligent disciple, a talented disciple, does not need much time. You remember the story about the frog and the rabbit. The rabbit ran very fast yet at many places fell asleep; the frog went slowly yet did not stop to rest and thus arrived earlier at his destination. Quick people often arrive with greater delay than slow people. The following is also true: the most talented pupils in a school, those who are most promising, often contribute the least to life. This is not because they cannot give but because they become spoiled by praise. Many people expect to be praised. This is very dangerous. It is especially dangerous to praise a man; it is also dangerous to reproach a person. You may not reproach anyone. The second is as dangerous as the first. Both impulses are based on egotism, We praise a person when we want to bribe him; we do not think he is kind, but we want to bribe him. Sometimes we tell some one that he is very bad. This way we want to influence him. He answers "I am not that bad". In the school of the occult none of these ways are applied.
In every one of us there are many faculties. All the faculties must be developed. In some of us the chances are better than in others. At the present condition all people cannot be equal, and their achievements cannot be the same. Even among ten people one or two are more talented, can wake greater achievements; only they are the heroes, and the others must stay in second place. If we cannot have great achievements in the present life, we may have better chances in the next life. It is important not to become discouraged. When your turn comes, you will be ready. This is the correct attitude of the disciple. You must make the best of the present because of the great future aims of His creation. One day we will receive an invitation to play our part. If you are ready you will play it well.
Thus in order to be able to develop your intellectual and nervous temperaments you must learn to master your thoughts. Much has been said about self-possession. It is a true art for the disciple. Worries and suffering will come. They are natural. Yet when all these disturbances come and out of them you manage to extract the blessing which they hide, you are able to master your thoughts. Every one must have a notebook. Sometimes when you fall into a temptation or you get upset, mark down how many minutes you need to calm down. Your anger begins. You notes "At 10:30 a great storm raged in me." and after 5, 10, 15 minutes or half an hour you note exactly when the storm passed, it may be that this anger will pass by itself. This is possible but it may bring about great damage. In such a case, it is dangerous. It is not bad that anger comes but if it causes great damage then it is dangerous. You must use such energy for work. On the other hand a good thought may come about. You should note down how long it took you to realize it. You should not note down every thought. It is enough if you take note of one thought a day. If it was negative, observe how long it took you to transform your condition and restore your good disposition. You will write down the time and then you will write: "I thank you; I have learned my lesson well." This will mean that you solve your problems alone. It is remarkable that as soon as someone starts on the spiritual path sufferings and difficulties come. Observe your children. They were happy and calm when they were little but as soon as they started school the teacher started to disturb their lives. When they come back from school they can no longer play freely but begin to think about their school work and you think, "My poor children, how much they must study!" The mother worries that her child studies too much. But there is nothing dangerous about this.
Now, you may think that this is an easy thing. No, it is a very basic matter. Tolstoy wrote a story, of which I will only repeat a part now, which explains my idea. It is the following: a man wished to become clairvoyant, thinking that he would be able to make use of the power. In actuality, one such moment was given to him. He saw that a thief was entering the house of a rich man with the intention of stealing his money. He thought that he would do a good deed by advising the rich man to go and find the thief. The rich man goy up and killed the thief. Another instance: the clairvoyant saw that a young couple loved each other. On one occasion another young man approached the young girl. He went to the young man to tell him to save his beloved. The young man hurriedly went to find his beloved with the other man. The two had a fight and killed one another. The clairvoyant had intended to help straighten out their lives. A third instances he saw that someone was stealing sheaves in a field. He knew that the field belonged to a very poor man, and he told him about this theft. The owner went and found the thief. They became involved in a fight and killed each other. This is not true knowledge. It is said in the scripture: "If someone goes to steal, let him steal. If someone goes to do a crime, let him do it." The disciple must stand aside and go his way. I like very much the story of Jean-Valjean in the novel of Victor Hugo's "Les Miserables," where he was found with the silver candlesticks and brought to the bishop. The bishop said: "He did not steal them; I gave them to him." This is a kind example! The mistake of all disciples of the occult is that you occupy yourselves with the small short-comings of others and say: "Why should he act this way?" We do not occupy ourselves with others’ mistakes.
In a school of the occult one cannot become occupied with the negative characteristics of others. If someone complains that he has been, take from your pocket and pay him. Say, "How much did he take from you? "A hundred dollars." You answer, "I will pay." And thus the problem is resolved. I expect the pupils of this school to correct the mistakes of others in this way. "I should correct the mistakes of other! How can I correct them?" How? When you do not acknowledge negative qualities. Never think about the mistakes of others. If you wish to ennoble yourself, never be concerned with the criticism of others. This applies to disciples in this school, and not for the external world. For the world the rule is different, He who wants to become a disciple of the school of Christ, should never tarry over the mistakes of others. Mistakes will occur, but you must not delay over them. Even God does not tarry over our mistakes. Every day he creates something new. There are many people who stop over the mistakes of others, and ask: "Is this right or not?" In Absolute Right, there exists only one rule. I wish that all of you would apply this rule: bring into yourself every day something new, something good. You cannot become perfect disciples at once: I do not expect this of you; but you must know how to solve your problems, to be accurate. According to this rule, accept everything that is given to you, never procrastinate, never linger. Do not have a bad opinion of yourself. Think about yourself the way God thinks about you. If you say, "I am bad", this implies that God has made you such, has created you as sinful. And if you think that you are lazy, this is another matter. Say, "I can do this. I am capable."
How, you will work upon your temperaments; upon the temperament of your head — the nervous, upon the sanguine temperament, the phlegmatic, and the executive. Always distribute your energies equally. In this way your face will begin to acquire perfect features. In those whose temperaments have been neglected, a certain asymmetry will: the fingers, hands, lags, or feet will become crooked. A disharmony occurs in the manifestation of the elements.
And thus the mind, the heart, and the will, have four elements with which you must work. In each thought you will implant dynamism (electricity); after that broadness; then density (weight), and lastly power of movement, or as I call it, growth. If your temperaments function this way, you will be able to accomplish everything. It is not enough only to plant these things; they must also, sprout, grow, and bear fruit. Some writers write well because they have applied these qualities to their mind.
The mind is the hero, the heart is the heroine, and the child who is born to these heroes takes after the father and the mother. When I speak about the will, I mean the child of the mind and the heart. I have often noticed that after I have given a very good Sunday lecture two people will start an argument and will quarrel; and I say, "This is how they understood my lecture." The one is offended and the other also, and when they say it’s a marvellous lecture and I do not quarrel, they have understood it well, but if both quarrel then the lecture was not good.
The path on which you proceed is a path of labor and perseverance. Now, I will connect the two lectures. The previous one was about sleeping, eating, and work; and this lecture is about your mind, your heart, and your will, about the temperaments.
I will give you an assignment. Each one of you will write ten lines of the following theme: which is the best mind? Everyone will write what he thinks is correct. Then I will leave you to criticize them. There will be one or two meetings in which the disciples will criticize what they have written. We have compared the mind to a hero. You will describe the mind the way an author describes the main qualities of his hero. The mind and the hero are similar. From what you write we will take the essence and we will come to some conclusions about how the mind can be improved. You will not sign your name, and one of you will write down the essence of all these thoughts and will make a resume of the best mind.