AN OUTLINE OF THEOSOPHY

by the Rt. Rev. C.W. Leadbeater


THE DEITY

When we lay down the existence of God as the first and greatest of our principles, it becomes necessary for us to define the sense in which we employ that much abused, yet mighty word. We try to redeem it from the narrow limits imposed on it by the ignorance of undeveloped men, and to restore to it the splendid conception, splendid, though so infinitely below the reality, given to it by the founders of religions. And we distinguish between God as the Infinite Existence, and the manifestation of this Supreme Existence as a revealed God, evolving and guiding a universe.

Only to this limited manifestation should the term " a personal God" be applied. God in Himself is beyond the bounds of the personality, is " in all and through all" , and indeed is all; and of the Infinite, the Absolute, the All, we can only say " He is" .

For all practical purposes we need not go further than that marvellous and glorious manifestation of Him (a little less entirely beyond our comprehension) the great Guiding Force or deity of our own solar system, whom philosophers have called the Logos. Of Him is true all that we have ever heard predicted of God, all that is good, that is, not the blasphemous conceptions sometimes put forward, ascribing to Him human vices.

But all that has ever been said of the love, the wisdom, the power the patience and compassion, the omniscience, the omnipresence, the omnipotence, all of this, and much more, is true of the Logos of our system. Verily " in Him we live and move and have our being" , not as a poetical expression, but (strange as it may seem ) as a definite scientific fact; and so when we speak of the deity our first thought is naturally of the Logos.

We do not vaguely hope that He may be; we do not even believe as a matter of faith that He is; we simply know it as we know that the sun shines, for to the trained and developed clairvoyant investigator this Mighty existence is a definite certainty. Not that any merely human development can enable us directly to see Him, but that unmistakable evidence of His action and His purpose surrounds us on every side as we study the life of the unseen world, which is in reality only the higher part of this.

Here we meet the explanation of a dogma which is common to all religions, that of the Trinity. Incomprehensible as many of the statements made on this subject in our creeds may seem to the ordinary reader, they become significant and luminous when the truth is understood. As He shows Himself to us in His work, the Solar Logos is undoubtedly triple, three yet one, as religion has long ago told us; and as much of the explanation of this apparent mystery as the intellect of man at its present stage can grasp will be found in the books presently to be mentioned.

That He is within us as well as without us, or, in other words, that man himself is in essence divine, is another great truth which, though those who are blind to all but the outer and lower world may still argue about it, is an absolute certainty to the student of the higher side of life. Of the constitution of manÌs soul and its various vehicles we shall speak under the heading of the second of truths; suffice it for the moment to note that the inherent divinity is a fact, and that in it resides the assurance of the ultimate return of every human being to the divine level.