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The Four Consciences

Master’s Twenty-sixth Lecture

Delivered at the Youth Esoteric Class

on 25 April 1923 – Sofia

Only the light path

of Wisdom leads to Truth.

It cheers up all the time.


Summaries of lecture eleven and twelve from year one were read.

The Topic the Difference between Sub-Conscience and Super-Conscience was read.

What will you obtain when you add the following numbers?

-1 –2 –3 –4 –5 –6 –7 –8 –9


+1 +2 +3 +4 +5 +6 +7 +8 +9


0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0

When these numbers are added they will balance themselves or in other words one will obtain ‘0’ as a result. The zero stands for the real world out of which the phenomenal world was generated. If you add up two positive values, will you obtain the real world? Or if you subtract one value from another will you obtain the real world? What does subtraction mean? Taking out? One takes out roots from the ground when they are withered. Along these lines, subtraction shows that when something stops existing it inevitably has to be taken out or subtracted. A person takes out an idea from one’s head when it is no longer useful.

Examining these issues I would like to make you think and reflect properly. You, for example, believe that you can solve all problems at once. This is impossible. There is no such process in Nature. Once you have eaten to your heart’s content, have you solved your eating problem forever? Even if you keep eating your entire life, or for several lives running, you still will not be in a position to solve the eating problem, as this is an insoluble issue. One cannot solve the issue of eating by eating or not eating. Having eaten, one does not think about eating, but when hungry, one keeps thinking only of eating, one is aware that something is missing.

Human beings cannot solve the issue of eating and at the same time, they cannot answer many other questions. For example, one does not have a clear idea what conscience, self-conscience, sub-conscience, and super-conscience are. The word conscience is not compounded by adding the Latin prefix con-, meaning with to the Latin stem of the word meaning science. This word conscience also means life – it’s a derivative of the Greek word zoy, meaning life. Hence, sub-conscience means something covered below or under Life. Therefore, sub-conscience means a storing room where all sorts of things can be kept. Movement in sub-conscience is circular, which shows that things do not get out of it. But whenever one wants, one can take things out of this storing room – from the sub-conscience, just like one takes water out of a well: one drops the bucket into the well, fills it with water and takes it out. The sub-conscience keeps many virtues in store, but it also keeps many mistakes from the past. When one least expects one will take out a mistake or virtue from the sub-conscience and one wonders where these might have been hiding within oneself. Sometimes you go to the closet of your house where you have kept old clothes for years, clothes already out of fashion, and you wonder where these have been for such a long time. Where have you hidden them? In your sub-conscience. So if you compare sub-conscience to super-conscience, you will find that they are absolutely opposite items. Sub-conscience stores old things, while super-conscience stores new things. In the life of super-conscience, human beings will take wool from sheep, will spin yarn, will weave cloth and will sew new clean clothes. Sub-conscience stores old ideas, while super-conscience adopts and applies new ideas. However, both sub-conscience and super-conscience are elements, poles of Life.

Christ said, "I am the Way, the Truth and the Life." These are three elements of the same principle. Which of the three elements is most important? Some may say that Life is the most important one. But how can you get to Life if there is no Path for you? Others might say that Path is the most important. But how can you get to the Path if you do not have Truth and Light within? Therefore, Life cannot do without Path and Truth; neither can Path do without Life and Truth or Truth without Life and Path. Path, Truth, and Life represent three equally important and needed variables for the overall Life. The situation is similar with the four types of consciences – these are inseparably connected variables: sub-conscience stands for past lives, which encompasses the lives of minerals, plants, animals, human beings, and Angels; conscience stands for the lives of minerals, plants, and animals; self-conscience stands for the life of human beings; super-conscience stands for the life of Angels. Thus, conscience and sub-conscience represent the foundation of human life, while super-conscience is beyond this life – it has nothing to do with human life. Sub-conscience and super-conscience are two lives absolutely independent of each other; these are two poles moving in opposite directions. Sub-conscience generates conscience, self-conscience is, however, closer to super-conscience. Indeed, human life is closer to Angels’ life, rather than to the life of minerals, plants, and animals. Conscience is like a canvass, upon which nature paints various objects like a skilful artist, which in time it processes.

I will now tell you an old esoteric story, which has not been told so far. A thousand years before Christ, there lived a poor artist in Egypt – Bar-Edin-Bu. One day he decided to draw a picture of the rising Sun, but he had no money to buy the canvass for the picture. It dawned upon him to go and ask one well-known canvass maker to give him a large canvass for the picture under the condition that the canvass would be paid for after the picture was sold. The weaver agreed but was thinking, ‘I will take the picture from the artist when it is ready’. The artist took the canvass and started thinking where he could get paints and brushes from, as he had no money for them either. He went to a shop selling such items and asked if they could give him paints and brushes so that he could paint the rising Sun, under the condition that he would pay it back after he sold the picture. The master of the shop had all the artist needed but thought to himself, ‘I will take the picture from the artist when it is ready’. The artist also needed a frame for the picture, so he went to a shop and asked, “Please, can you give me a frame, I am poor and have no money. I want to draw a picture – I will pay you back when I sell the picture.'’ The trader gave him a frame but thought to himself, ‘I will take the picture for myself when it is ready’. The artist started painting the picture and after a while it was finished. He put an advertisement in the newspapers that an artist had painted a picture of the rising Sun and wanted to sell it. The picture was on display in the house of the artist; many people wanted to see the picture and were captivated with it – the picture was breathtaking. The first to appear before the artist was the weaver, the trader in brushes and paints, and the trader in frames. The weaver said, "The picture is mine, because I gave you the canvass. How could you have painted a picture if you had no canvass?" The trader in brushes and paints said, "The picture is mine, because I gave you the brushes and paints. How could you have painted a picture if you had no brushes or paints?" The trader in frames said, "The picture is mine, because I gave you the frame. How could you have painted a picture without a frame?" Whose picture is it? You will say that the picture belongs to the artist. What proof do you have to this effect? The canvass belongs to the weaver, the paints and brushes belong to the trader, the frame belongs to the other trader – these are proofs all right. What proof is there that the picture belongs to the artist? You will say that the proof in favour of the artist lays in the making, in the idea that he put into it… At last there was a lawsuit and it was up to the court to decide who the picture belonged to. The claimants each had an argument – one provided the canvass, the other one – the brushes and paints, the third one – the frame. What does the artist have in his favour? Nothing. So, the reality itself is not available; it is absent. Does the canvass prove that the picture belongs to the artist? No, it does not. Does the frame prove that the picture belongs to the artists? No, it does not. Only the paints prove to some extent that the artist has placed the paints at certain places as we see them, but this however, is indirect proof. I am now asking you – can the picture belong to one person only? No, it cannot. Therefore, the weaver has the right to take the canvass only, the first trader can take only the paints, and the third trader can take the frame only. What if the weaver wants his canvass clean – can a clean canvass be returned to him? Or what if the first trader wants his paints back. Can this be done? Can the frame be given back to the second trader?

Let us now translate what canvass, paints, and frames stand for in Life. The frame stands for the physical body of the person, the canvass stands for the heart, while the brushes and paints stand for the mind. Just like, while watching a picture, one sees the canvass, the paints and the frame, but the real substance you do not see. Hence, the real substance is what cannot be seen. Reality is always invisible – what the artist has put on canvass, is invisible, this is the idea. Only those who can relate to the artist’s mind can see the idea of the artist. Otherwise, whoever else sees the picture will not understand anything about it. What can a fly, a bird, or a dog understand from a picture of a genius? They will understand nothing.

Well now, how will you resolve the issue of who owns the picture? Who has the strongest right over the picture? The artist? The weaver? The first or the second trader? What gives the artist the right to sell the picture alone? The canvass, brushes, paints, and the frame are not his. In doing a favour to the artist, the weaver, the first, and the second traders, told themselves that they would take the picture only after the artist finished it. And after this, the artist who painted the picture says that the picture is his.

I shall now leave you to think over the story. The issue can be solved in four different ways. A solution can be reached from the point of view of conscience, self-conscience, sub-conscience, and super-conscience. Bar-Edin-Bu is the artist who had four real things available on hand1 – a canvass, paints and brushes, a frame, and a picture. Each one, in lending something to the artist, claims ownership over the picture. And you say that the picture belongs to the artist – you are biased. Does the weaver not have any share in the picture? He also worked and laboured until he wove the canvass. The paint maker also invested labour in producing the paints. The one who made the frame also worked in the forest looking for trees to make frames. If you compare the work done by the artist with the work done by the weaver and by the traders, who lent items to the artist, you will find that the artist invested the least physical work. Artist’s work is more ideal than physical. The artist takes the brushes, splashes paints here and there, and paints. Painting does not constitute much in the form of physical labour. Which is to say that when trying to solve the problem of whose picture it is and who has rights over the picture, you have to take into consideration all those who have taken any part in its painting. Otherwise, any teacher drawing upon the blackboard will say that he or she has a right over the blackboard too. No, teachers have no right over the blackboard. As soon as a teachers draws something on the blackboard, the picture is shortly afterwards deleted. So think over the issue of whose picture it is and who has the biggest right over it. The weaver has a material proof that he has invested something material in the picture; the same is true for the traders. What is, however, the proof that the artist has invested something material in the picture? Taking a philosophical point of view, you can refute many philosophical statements from contemporary philosophy. Contemporary philosophers argue that anything, which can be touched, seen, heard, and tasted is real; if something cannot be touched, seen, heard, or tasted it is not real. If so, what is the material substance that the artist invested in the picture? If it boils down to the artist’s idea, it cannot2 be touched, seen, heard, or tasted.

I shall now clarify this point with the following example: if I touch the G string of my violin with my finger and if I hear this tone, is it me who put the tone in the string? Equally you may take any tone, is it you who put the tones in the violin? Do tones exist in Nature? Say, you meet someone and you say that his name is Stoyan. Is he indeed Stoyan? What is Stoyan? Just a name. Why was this person given this name? To make it easy to tell him apart from the rest. Names are arbitrarily created and assigned to persons. Not only names, many other things are also arbitrarily created. Therefore, you should be able to tell the difference between things arbitrarily created, the non-real things, and things which Nature has created and stated in its list. In Nature, there are vibrations, but no tones. Nature does not know what the tones of the octaves do re mi fa sol la si (C D E F G A B) mean. We use tones as an auxiliary system in music, as major points of departure, whereupon we can express what we feel and experience.

Now that you are reflecting upon various issues, looking for a way to solve your problems, keep in mind the following rule: each problem, properly solved by you, generates a Light in your mind, which in turn makes you Cheerful. When the solving of a problem is not accompanied by Light generation, the solution is not the right one. This rule is valid everywhere – in life, in science. For example, there are many principles in contemporary mechanics, according to which whole machines or machine parts can be constructed. A wheel in motion has to be inserted in a machine. To this effect a number of calculations are carried out based on a certain principle, the calculations are applied to the wheel, but still the wheel does not move. One, two, three, four, ten experiments were made, until at last the wheel starts moving. As soon as a small Light shines in your mind and you cheer up, you can be certain that you have arrived at the right solution of the issue. This is to say that whenever you need to know if3 you have solved the problem correctly, you have to make sure that your wheel is in motion. Some say that certain issues are vague in their conscience.

What is your understanding of the word conscience? To Nature, conscience is just a word. Do you see certain Light in your mind on pronouncing the word conscience? When you pronounce the words hungry or thirsty, you relate to the sensation these words generate within you. What feeling or sensation does the word conscience generate within you? For the time being the word conscience is just a philosophical term, it has not yet engulfed human conscience. As of now, you still do not understand what conscience is. Conscience is something divine. The moment you grasp what conscience means, your Life will change fundamentally. How will your Life change? Imagine you are in a big dark room and that you do not know where you are, where the entrance or exit is, you can’t find your way around and you wonder what to do. You have a candle and a box of matches in your pocket, but you have forgotten about them. Suddenly it comes to mind that you have a candle and box of matches. You immediately strike a match and light the candle, the room is lit and you can find your way around – you can see what there is in the room, where the exit is, where it leads etc., the whole situation in the room looks completely different now. You freely open the door and go out into the open, in the sunshine.

So, one should not only live with the concept of conscience, but with conscience as reality. As long as one lives with the concept of conscience, one is in a dark room, candle and matches in hand, but candle unlit, and one is bumping into the walls of the room. As soon as one is engulfed by conscience as a reality, where one lives, one is already in a new situation in Life, one is facing a New Life. In this new Life, one always has a lit candle in hand. This is to say that the lit candle stands for the conscience of human beings – which burns forever without ever burning out – it shows the right path in Life. You can read everything in the light of this candle; you will find your way even in the thickest darkness with this candle in hand. Once you have this candle, all other issues such as; what is the wick of the candle, how many vibrations the light of the candle makes in a second, how burning takes place, how much air it takes etc., are of secondary significance.

You are now aiming at achieving simplicity, clarity in your understanding of Life. Everything in Life and Nature is clear, simple, and understandable – Nature tolerates no ambiguity, no duplicity. It says, "If you do not understand simple things, you will not understand complex things either; if you do understand simple things, you will understand complex things as well." This is what Christ meant in the following line, "If you can’t understand Earthly things, how can you understand heavenly things?" You should make it a point to understand the simple things in Life, so that you can understand the simple manifestations of conscience. Once you understand the simple manifestations of conscience, you will understand its complex manifestations as well, i.e. you will understand the other forms of conscience as well.

When you write your compositions, keep writing and re-writing until you like them. If the topic you write on is ordinary, the longer it stays with you, the less you will like it. If it is something good, ideal, you will like it better in time – you will not like it a lot at first, but the longer it stays with you, the more you will like it. What does this indicate? This indicates that ordinary things are nice in the beginning, while in the end they start looking worse and more foolish. Conversely, the unusual, valuable things look foolish in the beginning, but with time, they start looking better and better.

Being students you are required to be precise in the use of words – in form, content, and sense. As to word forms, we say good, better, best. This is one word in various forms or degrees. By content, these words imply that someone is good in general, as compared to people at large, better – in respect of some people, and best – again in comparison with certain people. The comparison is between people. Such an understanding of things, however, is not correct; there is no point comparing one person to another, as no one can be taken as an authentic model to all. And finally words can be used by meaning: we say good, better, best, or a very good person. Compared to what is this person good? Compared to the principles of Live Nature. Human beings also change in respect of these principles, as one is constantly growing, and becomes good, better, and then very good. In such circumstances, Nature is an authentic basis against which to compare the Good in human beings – it measures and determines human beings. Reliable can only be the rules, measures and principles of intelligent Life as well as of Live Nature. When you come into contact with Live Nature, tell yourselves, "I am good in my aspirations. I accept all measures, all methods Nature uses to work upon me. I will do my best to be as unselfish as Nature is. I will love as God loves."

Esoteric students should comply with the principles of Live Nature – these have to be considered indisputable. No philosopher can be considered authentic in comparison with Nature. Philosophers can be considered reliable by human beings, but inasmuch as philosophers can strengthen and support the views and understanding of human beings. If one does not think properly, no philosopher can prove anything to such a person. If a student does not have a musical ear, nobody can teach such a student to play an instrument. If a student has a musical ear, the teacher can teach the student to play, the teacher will impart his or her talent to the student so that whatever Nature has implanted in such a student can develop. It is important for human beings to know what Nature has imparted to them. Therefore, human beings have to work upon themselves to develop what Nature has invested in them in respect of gifts and abilities. Provided you work conscientiously upon yourselves, you will resolve your problems properly. It is only a matter of time: some may resolve their problems within one day only, others may take one or several months, still others may take a year, still others – ten years, still others – a lifetime, and still others – several life times. This depends on the person. For ordinary people it may take a long time, for talented people – less time, for genii – least time of all. Genii resolve their problems on the spur of the moment. But all are required to be patient.

Only the light path of Wisdom leads to Truth.

It cheers up all the time.

1 Translator’s notes – compare on hand : in present possession or readily available; with to hand 1 : into possession 2 : within reach – what’s the point of substitution the one with the other

2 Translator’s note – same point as in footnote 2 - there is no difference in meaning between the original ‘can neither … nor’ and ‘cannot…. Or’ – both equally grammatically legitimate - why the change then?

3 Translator’s note – same point as in footnotes 2, 3 – ‘whether’ & ‘if’ as conjunctions have the same meaning – what’s the point of substituting the one for the other?








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