JULY 2012

The Science of Life and the Art of Living

Theosophy has been described as the accumulated wisdom of the ages. This prompts students and devotees of this wisdom to ask themselves some important questions: If we are fortunate enough to be able to study Theosophy, what can we do with that opportunity, responsibility and privilege, to improve the condition of the world and the circumstances of the human family, as we find it today? What good is having wisdom if it can't be used to reduce suffering in the world, or at least make it bearable and productive? Can we discover the living power of these ideas that elevates the heart and mind so that the true transformation of individuals, societies, and nations will occur naturally and peacefully?

There are many rooms in this mansion of wisdom called Theosophy. The room that may contain the answers to these questions has the following sign over its door: "The Science of Life and The Art of Living."

According to Theosophy, life is much more than biological beings. The universe in its totality is alive since it is embodied consciousness. Therefore this science of life includes the invisible and the visible laws, forces and dynamics of nature. It is really the occult science of life. The instruments for checking, testing and verifying these laws are not just the ones used by modern science, but include those that exist within the mental, psychic, and spiritual principles of the human being. While these laws may be self-evident, they are also verifiable when checked with the independent observations of others. Theosophy provides a portion of the accumulated experience and investigations of countless generations of wise human beings who have perfected their inner instruments to the highest possible degree. A portion of their knowledge lies within this room in the mansion. Let us take what we can and apply it for the benefit of others as it has been freely given to us for that purpose.

Theosophy is also the art of living. Every artistic discipline includes the artist, the instruments and medium for expression, and the materials. Every artistic discipline includes knowledge of the science of light, color, rhythm, movement, sound, and vibration in varying degrees. Yet within each discipline there are an infinite variety of styles, interpretations, methods, and stances according to the creativity and skill of the individual artist.

In this case, the artist is the thinker, who is continuously acting. The instrument is the physical body and its organs of sensation and action. The medium is the relationship between the thinker and other sentient beings. The materials are the thoughts, words and deeds of the artist. The particular style, interpretation, method and artistic stance of each thinker is either determined by the passions and desires, or the inspiration and guidance of the higher spiritual principles. In other words, human beings are already artists of life.

Although the art of living is entirely up to the individual, the more one understands the dynamic relationship between the Thinker, nature, and other sentient beings; the more one realizes the influence of thoughts, words, and deeds; the more one is familiar with the occult operations of the psychological and physiological instruments that must be used in living the life; the better artist one can become and the proportionately more beautiful will be the life others.

An individual can choose to remain an incapable or even a bad artist. The first important lesson to take from this room called "The Science of Life and The Art of Living" is that there needs to be an inner reaction in the moral nature of the artist (the Thinker) that will help inspire a choice to be a wise and good artist. The dynamics of the Theosophical doctrines of universal unity, reincarnation, karma and the perfectibility of Man are particularly suited to accomplish this transformation. They belong to and appeal to the plane of the Higher Mind. These doctrines can produce the lasting peace of the philosophical mind that can be acquired by an individual at any age, in any condition pleasurable or painful, and in any country regardless of its outer state of turmoil, chaos, and conflict.

We are well past learning as a race that prosperity, wealth, and health are no guarantees for happiness or peace. In fact, the lack of these or the threat of their loss is often a stimulus for change and a wake up call for virtue. Humanity is long past the need to experience suffering in order to evolve. What is needed is a Theosophical education, a practical introduction to the masses of thinkers of the meaning, value, and power of these ideas. This will bring out the true human character and generate solutions to the significant problems of our times.

"Thoreau pointed out that there are artists in life, persons who can change the colour of a day and make it beautiful to those with whom they come in contact. We claim that there are adepts, masters in life who make it divine, as in all other arts.” - H. P. Blavatsky

   “Theosophical Independence”  is produced monthly by Associates of The United Lodge of Theosophists in Philadelphia located at 1917 Walnut Street,   Philadelphia, PA  19103.
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