In my research over the years into esoteric thought, a primary resource has been H. P. Blavatsky’s The Secret Doctrine. Along with the works of Alice Bailey, Madame Blavatsky’s critical treatise discusses the Tibetan Book of Dzyan, an ancient esoteric text and provides one of the foundations for theosophical thought.
The book itself comprises two volumes and both are long and detailed. Madame Blavatsky begins the first volume with a discussion of the 7 Stanzas from the Book of Dzyan which describes the process of creation. I find the symbology to be so beautiful that I’m including stanza one below along with some commentary by Madame Blavatsky on a portion of the stanza. My own reflections follow.
1. The Eternal Parent, wrapped in her Ever-Invisible Robes, had slumbered once again for Seven Eternities.
2. Time was not, for it lay asleep in the Infinite Bosom of Duration.
3. Universal Mind was not, for there were no Ah-hi to contain it.
4. The Seven Ways to Bliss were not. The Great Causes of Misery were not, for there was no one to produce and get ensnared by them.
5. Darkness alone filled the Boundless All, for Father, Mother and Son were once more one, and the Son had not yet awakened for the new Wheel and his Pilgrimage thereon.
6. The Seven Sublime Lords and the Seven Truths had ceased to be, and the Universe, the Son of Necessity, was immersed in Paranishpanna, to be outbreathed by that which is, and yet is not. Naught was.
7. The Causes of Existence had been done away with; the Visible that was, and the Invisible that is, rested in Eternal Non-Being—the One Being.
8. Alone, the One Form of Existence stretched boundless, infinite, causeless, in Dreamless Sleep; and Life pulsated unconscious in Universal Space, throughout that All-Presence, which is sensed by the Opened Eye of Dangma.
9. But where was Dangma when the Âlaya of the Universe was in Paramârtha, and the Great Wheel was Anupâdaka? (995-1006)
The Secret Doctrine teaches the progressive development of everything, worlds as well as atoms; and this stupendous development has neither conceivable beginning nor imaginable end. Our “Universe” is only one of an infinite number of Universes, all of them “Sons of Necessity,” because links in the great cosmic chain of Universes, each one standing in the relation of an effect as regards its predecessor, and of a cause as regards its successor.
The appearance and disappearance of the Universe are pictured as an outbreathing and inbreathing of the “Great Breath,” which is eternal, and which, being Motion, is one of the three symbols of the Absolute—Abstract Space and Duration being the other two. When the Great Breath is projected, it is called the Divine Breath, and is regarded as the breathing of the Unknowable Deity—the One Existence—which breathes out a thought, as it were, which becomes the Kosmos. So also is it that when the Divine Breath is inspired, the Universe disappears into the bosom of the Great Mother, who then sleeps “wrapped in her Ever-Invisible Robes.” (1240-1248)
Others may disagree, but I view the Seven Sublime Lords as, if not the Seven Rays themselves which emanate throughout the universe and throughout all life, at least part of that process. Everything is in seven’s, the Seven Eternities, the Seven Ways to Bliss, Seven Sublime Lords, Seven Truths which align with seven sacred planets, seven suns, seven solar systems etc. that are found in esoteric astrology.
It’s in the fifth section where the Trinity comes into play referencing the Father, Mother, and Son who were once more one describing the cyclical nature of existence. The Son waits in darkness in the loving embrace of the Mother/Father Source Presence to embark upon his next manifestation, his next journey in form.
Madame Blavatsky’s commentary on section six describes the unity expressed by the Sons of Necessity along with the Great Breath establishing that the Great Mother breathes out a thought, as it were, which becomes the Kosmos. From there, as the cycle ends, it’s when the Divine Breath is inspired, the Universe disappears into the bosom of the Great Mother, who then sleeps “wrapped in her Ever-Invisible Robes.”
The stanza ends as it begins, in the bosom of the Great Mother. But it explains beautifully the projection of thought that becomes the universe, the Great Mother breathing creation into being, drawing back Her Great Breath at the end of the cycle.
In truth, all of our blessed creation lives within the Great Mother’s breath.
Looking forward to thinking about all of this and exploring Stanza 2!