by Fr. E.S.Q.S.
NOTE: Seeing as the article is too big to fit in one post, I will append the second part as a comment once the first part has been posted.
What I’d like to discuss today is a little thing called, “Temptation”. Of course, I will need to explain just what I mean by the word, “Temptation” and put it into a more complete esoteric context. The word, “Temptation” is defined as follows:
“A desire to do something, especially something wrong or unwise” (Google Dictionary).
Of all the definitions available, I find this one to be the most clear and concise. “Temptation” most certainly is a matter of desire, and especially a desire to do something wrong or unwise. To put it into a more complete esoteric context, “Temptation” is a desire to knowingly and deliberately break a law of life – generally, the law of freedom and/or the law of unity. Thus, it is fair to say that very few people as of yet truly know the meaning of the word, “Temptation” – truly understand the immense suffering it entails - for they are, as of yet, still as many babes in a nursery: they commit crimes against life only because they do not know any better. They are innocent. It is an entirely different matter for those who know, those who have studied the laws and, yet, flaunt them still – despite knowing of them and the consequences that must follow. These are the ones who know the meaning of the word, “Temptation”: these who feel the destructive urge pulling and nagging at them, who see its reprehensible madness – but also its seductive allure. It is this matter that I would like to address today; more importantly, I’d like to implore my fellow brethren to work on the development of their character as the very necessary safeguard to such temptation. In time, we are all tempted by the very devil of our own design: our ill-considered thought-forms, our destructive impulses and bad habits, our subconscious, and the consciousness of the envelopes themselves – all of which is our own work. As it has been said, time and again:
“We are our own worst enemy”.
And I am a man speaking from my own personal experiences, your dear old Fr. E.S.Q.S. Take care, oh wanderer on the way, for even the least of your weaknesses can become your Achilles’ heel. Make haste. Do not tarry. Strengthen your love of unity; strengthen your love of all that is good, right, and just. Build up your character. Address your weaknesses now, err the fight has truly begun. Put on your armor and gird yourself in steel. Polish your shield and be ready: for the enemy is relentless. Love, my fellow – love will be your savior.
The Reality of Temptation
Though very few people who will read this short article will, as of yet, understand the severity of the words I am communicating, it really must be said: temptation (to do wrong) is a reality, one we will all have to face at some time or another. In the beginning, this probably seems like it is a problem that belongs to some far off distant life; however, that is not so: the aspirant, as he grows in power – his powers of concentration, his grip on the energies of the first self (47:4-49:7), his ability to influence others, etc. – he is tempted, at every turn, to abuse those very powers for his own, selfish ends; in other words, he is tempted to indulge in black magic. Admittedly, the beginner is (relatively) safe due to his ignorance and inability; as of yet, he is incapable of wielding the forces of the first self (47:4-49:7). But there will come a time when he, as all others before him, will be able to do so. Then, and only then, will he begin to understand the reality of temptation. And what is this, “Temptation”? It is the temptation to do what is wrong: to knowingly and deliberately break the laws – and it is rooted in our selfish desires, and not least of all the lust for power. In truth, it is utter madness: it is the work of purposelessness and chaos. But it is seductive and alluring – hence, the name, “Temptation”. We are enticed, by the force of our selfish desires, to work evil. Thus, once more: I implore my fellow brethren to take care. This is no laughing matter. I am not writing this in jest; rather, I am writing this to offer whatever help I can before it is too late.
The Development of your Character
The greatest safeguard to the very temptation we all must face some time is in the development of your character. You must be able to resist the urge to abuse your newfound powers - and the only way to do that is to become a “good man”; a lawful man, an upright man. You must become incorruptible. Remember the laws! Remember unity! Build those ideas into you and make them the very guiding lights of your life:
“Unity is my lodestar, always and ever guiding me aright”.
Study the laws of life – and especially the laws of freedom and unity. Try to understand their importance for yourself, for your brethren, and for all life. Study the laws and become a living embodiment of the laws. Study harmony, law, order, and justice and become a representative of those very ideals. Do it now, not later. Do it now, not tomorrow. There is no time to waste.
Ennoble your feelings!
Strive for the development of your character: ennoble your feelings! Work on the ability to love! Try, as you might, to touch – even for but a moment – the very community of all life (i.e.: essential consciousness, at least 46:7). Let that sense of community remain with you, always. You will need it when the devil comes calling, for – in those moments of temptation - you must remember all life. You must remember unity. You do not live in a vacuum by yourself, but you live in a world full of life: every thought, every feeling, every word, and every deed has its effect.
Sharpen up your thinking!
Strive for the development of your character: sharpen up your thinking! You need to see that the temptation is irrational and insensible, as alluring as it all may be! It is nothing but a false promise; more than this, it can only beget suffering and misery for it flies in the very face of all that is good, right, and just. It is easy to fall into the pit, but it is very difficult to get out: the stronger our impulses become, and the more “powerful” we become, the more we are, ourselves, enslaved by our selfish desires. It is a lie! You will need a sharp mind to catch it! Those who stand against the tide of cosmic forces governed by law, like those who would stand in the way of an impending tsunami, will inevitably be washed away.
Learn to forget yourself! That “little self”, with its selfish desires, is a very big part of the problem. Probably it does not seem very threatening now, this “little self”, this little personality, but – when it becomes threatened by your growth and development - it will gather its forces and fight back! And it is far stronger than you’d think! Why does it fight back? Well, because your growth and development - as an evolutionary monad, as a potential causal self (47:1-3) – in many ways, entails its destruction. That isn’t to say that this “little self” is purposefully evil – it is not, but it is certainly motivated, to a large degree, by less than pure impulses! You must work to forget yourself; you must work to remember yourself! You must strive to be awake, to be present, and in control.
END OF PART I