The Inner Life, v. II/Sixth Section/IV
THE MONADS FROM THE MOON
Those who have studied the Theosophical system are aware that we divide humanity into various classes according to the age of the ego, and the degree of his development. Transaction No. 26 of the London Lodge gives this arrangement very clearly, and it is also to be found in Chapter XII of The Ancient Wisdom; but our students will see that the author of the last-named work has altered the numbering of the classes so as to bring it more nearly into agreement with that adopted in The Secret Doctrine.
Mrs. Besant separates from the rest those entities to which the London Lodge Transaction had given the titles of the first and second classes, and calls them solar monads, so that she begins her list of the lunar monads with those that the Transaction had called the third class, and to it she gives the name of the first class; consequently in The Ancient Wisdom the fourth class of the Transaction is called the second and the fifth becomes the third. Madame Blavatsky's fourth class covers Mr. Sinnett's sixth and seventh, while the remainder of her classes includes entities which he did not take into account at all. His classification dealt only with members of the lunar animal kingdom, which would become human on our earth-chain; hers took in everything which passed over from the lunar chain to this. Her fifth class represents the vegetable kingdom of the moon, and her sixth class its mineral kingdom, while her seventh includes all three of its elemental kingdoms.
Since the writing of The Ancient Wisdom and The Pedigree of Man, Mrs. Besant has thought it advisable to adopt clearly descriptive English names in place of those which have previously been used. To those who fully succeeded upon the moon-chain, and attained the arhat level prescribed for them, she gives the title of Lords of the Moon. Those whom she had previously called solar monads (whom Mr. Sinnett had described as first and second class pitris) are now to be called moon-men of the first and second orders respectively. The first order of moon-men has many sub-divisions, as we shall see directly. What she previously called the first-class monads (Mr. Sinnett's third class) are now described as lunar animal-men. Her second, third and fourth classes (corresponding, as above stated, to Mr. Sinnett's fourth, fifth, sixth and seventh) are now described as the first, second and third divisions of the lunar animals. This completes the list of the entities constituting our present humanity, as Madame Blavatsky's lower classes (of which Mr. Sinnett took no account) will not attain the human level in the present chain.
These classes are arranged in the order of their advancement, and they differ not only in appearance but also in the methods by which that advancement is attained. Among other points there is great difference in the length of the intervals between successive incarnations, and in the way in which these intervals are spent; but this part of the subject will be treated in the section on reincarnation.
To understand how these classes are distinguished we must remember that for each chain of worlds a definite level of attainment is laid down, and to reach that is to gain full success. In our present chain of worlds the level assigned is that of the asekha adept, but in the moon-chain it was the fourth step of the Path, that of the arhat. Those who fully attained that on the lunar chain had achieved the purpose of the LOGOS, and so were free to take one or other of the seven paths which always open before the perfected humanity of each chain.
Below them were people standing at many different stages, whom we must to some extent attempt to classify. Broadly speaking, the animal kingdom of one chain makes the humanity of the next. Our present humanity is composed of the successful portion of the animal kingdom of the moon-chain, plus those members of the lunar humanity who failed to reach the required level.
We have already attempted to show into what classes men must inevitably distribute themselves at the end of evolution upon our own earth-chain. A similar arrangement existed at the end of the lunar chain.
Those who had attained the arhat level were the full successes, and they passed off along one or other of their seven paths. We do not certainly know that these are the same as the seven which open before our own adepts, but at least one of them shows decided resemblance; for just as some of our adepts will remain in close touch with the next chain and incarnate on it in order to help its inhabitants in their evolution, so one of the seven classes of the Lords of the Moon stayed to help us in our chain. The members of this class are those called in The Secret Doctrine the Barhishads.
Moon-men (first order). Next below this level comes a large and diversified group to which we are at present giving the title of moon-men (first order), though for convenience in following out the several destinies of its subdivisions it will probably be found necessary presently to assign separate names to them. It includes some who, though they had not succeeded in reaching the arhat level, were on some of the lower steps of the Path; others who had not yet gained that Path, though they were approaching it; the failures who had dropped out of the lunar humanity (corresponding to the two-fifths of our humanity who will drop out in our fifth round) ; and the most advanced representatives of the lunar animal kingdom, who had succeeded in fully developing the causal body. We may later give distinctive names to these subdivisions, but for the present we will merely number them.
1. Those who, although they had not attained arhatship, were already upon one or other of the various steps of the Path. These also, like the Lords of the Moon, have long ere this attained adeptship and passed away altogether from the field of our consideration.
2. Those of the lunar-chain animal kingdom who attained individualisation in the fourth round of the moon-chain. All these also have by this time attained adeptship. The Masters best known to us in connection with Theosophical work belong to this class, and in it we may also include the majority of those who became arhats under the influence of the preaching of the Lord Buddha.
3. Those who attained individualisation in the fifth round of the moon-chain. These are now the distinguished people of the world — not by any means only those whom the world calls distinguished, but those who, along one line or another, are considerably in advance of their fellows. In our Theosophical ranks this means those who are either already on the Path or approaching it; in the outer world it means men who are either great saints or of specially high intellectual or artistic development.
4. Those who attained individualisation in the sixth round of the moon-chain. We have here a fairly large class of people, distinctly gentlemen, persons of refined feeling, with a high sense of honour, and rather above the average in their goodness, intellect, or religious feelings. Typical instances of this class are our country gentlemen and professional men, our clergy or our officers in the army and navy. They have strength, but they are by no means free from the possibility of using their power wrongly. They may not do at all what people around them think they ought to do, and therefore they may often not be considered respectable; but at least they will do nothing low or mean.
5. Those who attained individualisation in the seventh round of the moon-chain. The members of this class do not differ greatly from those of the last, except that they are somewhat nearer the average in goodness or intellectual development or religious feeling. They turn their intelligence to rather more material ends, as city merchants perhaps. They represent the great division which we commonly call the upper middle class — gentlemen still, yet with a life slightly less elevated than that of the professional man.
All these classes which have been mentioned are in reality subdivisions of one class — the first order of the moon-men — and all the way through they melt into one another by almost indistinguishable gradations, so that the lowest ego of any one of them differs but little from the highest ego of the next class below. Not only are the lines between them thus not clearly marked, but there is even a good deal of interpenetration. Egos belonging by right to the mercantile class get astray among the professions, while those of the higher type find themselves forced into business. As they say in India: “In these days castes are mixed.”
I have divided them according to the round of the lunar chain in which they became human. When that happens in any of the earlier rounds it usually means that the newly-formed ego proceeded to take human incarnations in the next following round. For example, those who were individualised in the fourth round of the moon-chain came into human incarnation in the middle of the fifth, and continued to incarnate through the remainder of the fifth, the whole of the sixth, and half of the seventh. In the same way those individualised in the fifth round took up their series of human incarnations in the middle of the sixth; and those individualised in the sixth took birth in the seventh. Those individualised in the seventh round had their first experience of human life on the earth-chain, and of course had to be correspondingly primitive on their arrival here.
Moon-men (second order). Below this huge class comes the second order of the moon-men, whose members, having been individualised at a somewhat earlier stage in their animal life, had not yet fully developed a causal body, but had already what might be described as the skeleton of such a vehicle — a number of interlacing streams of force which indicated the outline of the ovoid that was yet to come. These egos had consequently a somewhat curious appearance, almost as though they were enclosed in a kind of basket-work of the higher mental matter.
At the present day these are represented by the great mass of the bourgeoisie; what is usually called the lower middle class, a typical specimen of whom would be the small shop-keeper or shop-assistant. This class may be described as on the whole well-intentioned, but usually narrow, conventional and dull. They often make a fetish of what they call respectability. A man who is deadly respectable usually does nothing whatever that counts, either for good or for ill. He may go on at a dead level of monotony for many lives, guiding himself always by the canon of what he supposes other people will think of him.
We may sometimes see a bourgeois soul even in the higher classes, and when such souls attain power in any country, it indicates that that country is engaged in expiating its evil karma. The reign of such a king as George III in England was the karma of the murder of king Charles I and of the other horrors of puritanism; and the result was the division between England and America, which is only now being healed. Since people of this level cannot learn the lesson of any particular sub-race as rapidly as the higher classes, they usually take many incarnations in each before passing on to the next.
Lunar Animal-men. The next group we call the lunar animal-men — those egos who had individualised from the earliest stage of the animal kingdom at which individualisation was possible. They consequently commenced their human life without anything which could properly be called a causal body, but with the monad floating above a personality to which it was linked only by certain threads of nirvanic matter. It was they who in the first round filled the forms made by the Lords of the Moon, and thus did pioneer work for all the kingdoms.
In considering them we come at last to what are called the working-classes, who make the enormous majority of humanity in every country. Why they alone should receive the honourable title of workers is not clear, for they would assuredly rebel with promptitude and vigour if they were called upon to work as many hours a day as does any successful man of the higher classes; but it is usually taken to signify those who work with their hands rather than with their heads. The particular type with which we are dealing at the moment — those who were animal-men on the moon — may be said to work with both, for they are the skilled workmen of the world — belonging to the proletariat, but representing the best class of it; men of determination and good character, self-respecting and reliable.
Below that again we have three classes, whose members had not yet succeeded in breaking away from their group-souls, and were consequently not then individualities, though they had every prospect of becoming so during our present earth-chain. These are still labelled as animals.
First-class Moon-animal. These attained humanity during the second round of the earth-chain, and are at the present day represented by the vast mass of unskilled labour, on the whole well-meaning but usually careless and improvident. Along with them we must group the higher types of savages — men like the Zulus and some of the better kinds of American Indians and negroes.
Second-class Moon-animals. This is a lower type which gained individuality only in the third round the earth-chain. We see it exemplified now in savages of comparatively mild type, in some of the hill-tribes of India, and among ourselves in the wastrels, the unemployable, the drunkards, and many of the slum-dwellers of our great towns.
Third-class Moon-animals. These are the lowest specimens of humanity, but little removed even now from the animal kingdom, which they left only during the earlier world-periods of this present round, or even in the earlier races on this earth. It is represented now by the lowest and most brutal of savages, and among ourselves by habitual criminals, by bomb-throwers and wife- and child-beaters. To this group also may be added a few of those who at various stages were individualised through hatred or fear.
Below all these come the three classes which furnish our present lower kingdoms; the lunar vegetable kingdom, which is now our animal; the lunar mineral, which is now our vegetable; and the lunar elemental kingdoms, the most advanced of which has become our mineral kingdom.
It is to those whom we have called the animal-men that the pioneer work on the earth-chain was assigned. Although on the moon they broke away from the animal kingdom, and must therefore be considered as potentially human, on the first globe of the first round of our earth-chain they entered into evolution not at the human level but at that of the first elemental kingdom. They passed rapidly from that into the second and third, and then successively through the mineral, vegetable and animal kingdoms until they reached the human.
In each of these kingdoms they established the forms, taking the idea of them from the minds of the Lords of the Moon, who, on behalf of the LOGOS, were directing the evolution of that globe. We might rather say, perhaps, that these primitive entities flowed into the moulds made by the instructors, and materialised these moulds for the use of those who followed them; for close behind them all the time was pressing the next class of monads — the highest of those who had not yet in the lunar chain broken away from the group-souls. And behind them in turn came all the rest.
When our animal-men had completed this work on the first globe in that first round, they moved on to the second globe and repeated exactly the same process there in denser matter; when that was finished they passed to the third, and then to the fourth, and so on, running again through the tedious evolution from the first elemental kingdom up to the human in each of the globes, in order that the forms might be duly prepared for those that followed. At the end of the first round their task was over, and they entered the first globe of the second round at the level of primitive humanity, though it was so primitive that the advantage is scarcely a perceptible one.
In the course of that second round the first class of the lunar animals had reached the human level, and the same thing happened in the third round to the second class of lunar animals; but here a fresh complication is introduced by the entry in the middle of the third round of the second order of moon-men, who had succeeded on the moon-chain in setting up a kind of framework for the causal body. Coming in at this stage, they soon pushed themselves to the front and took the lead.
Students will remember that the fourth world-period of the fourth round differs from all the rest in that it is to some extent a recapitulation of all the earlier stages. A large number of entities appear to have been on the brink of individualisation, but could not quite attain it in the ordinary course of evolution before that middle point of the fourth round when the door was to be shut. A special opportunity was therefore given to them, and the conditions of the first, second and third rounds were reproduced in miniature in the first, second and third root-races of this present world-period.
If we examine humanity as it appeared on Mars in this fourth round, we find that it did not differ radically in appearance from that of the present day; and this is true of all its root-races from the first to the seventh. But if we look at the humanity of the first root-race on our own globe in this present round, we shall see that its members are utterly unlike any kind of men that we know. They are mere drifting masses of cloud — just the men of the first round over again. In the same way men of our second root-race have the curious formless pudding-bag appearance which had not until then been seen on any world of our chain since the second round. In the third root-race came over again all the business of the descent into denser matter and the separation of the sexes which had distinguished middle of the third round.
All this was done only for the sake of backward entities, and it must not be forgotten that only they took part in it — which accounts for the sin of the mindless, the extreme degradation of the forms, and other things. None of the humanity of previous rounds (and previous parts of this round) appeared during that period at all; all its members came in only when the changes in the middle of the third root-race had brought matters back to something resembling the conditions to which they were accustomed — though even then the physical vehicles were of so low a type that some of the arrivals declined to occupy them. The whole of the plan of the earlier races of this globe was in fact the offering of a final opportunity to the laggards, and it was to a large extent successful. Many entities who had not been fully able to take advantage of these conditions in those earlier rounds were able to do something with them now, especially with the aid of the tremendous impetus given to evolution by the descent of the Lords of the Flame from Venus.
In this fourth round the third class of lunar animals attained their individuality, and in the middle of the third root-race on this globe the less developed of the first order of moon-men began to return to incarnation also. From that time until the middle of the Atlantean period, and perhaps even somewhat beyond it, the monads of that first order came rapidly into incarnation, and of course at once took up a position in the forefront of evolving humanity.
It is hoped that this attempt at explanation will facilitate the work of those who are studying this most interesting subject. There is, it is true, much complication in detail, but the broad principles are clear, and a student who keeps those in mind will soon grasp the scheme as a whole.