To all faithful ones who persistently strive to overcome self and who endure to the end are given this promise:
"And therefore will Jehovah wait that he may be gracious unto you; and therefore will He be exalted, that He may have mercy upon you; for Jehovah is a God of Justice: blessed are they that wait for Him.
"For the people shall dwell in Zion at Jerusalem; thou shall weep no more; He will surely be gracious unto thee. At the voice of thy cry, when He shall hear, He will answer thee.
"And though the Lord give you the bread of adversity and the water of affliction, yet shall not thy teachers be hidden any more, but thine eyes shall see thy teachers: and thy ears shall hear a voice behind thee saying, This is the way, walk in it." -Isaiah, 30:18-21.
All experience of whatsoever kind brings steady growth or unfoldment and expansion of consciousness for the disciple, whether he is aware of it or not. For when he thinks he is growing the least and has no opportunity to meditate, yet is faithfully striving to put the teachings into practice, apparently with many failures, his growth would be very apparent on the soul plane to those who can see the light that he radiates. An intense desire to become worthy and an earnestness of purpose manifesting in a continual striving to overcome faults and weaknesses, count for such much more than is generally realized.
This applies equally to aspirants in their search for Truth. It is the motive and the faithfulness with which the seeker persists despite failure that attracts the attention of Teachers on the inner planes, and which brings the help needed, when facing the problems of the daily life. While aspirants have not won to the plane of purified souls, yet being souls they live and are active in the inner planes of being exactly as their human personalities live and mingle with those interested in the same lines of thought on the physical plane.
Try always to realize that the soul must be in the inner realms just what its reflection-the personality-is in the outer, for it creates its home and environment first in the soul realm of consciousness, manifesting or outpicturing them within, on the mental or one of the astral planes, according to its spiritual growth, and then without on the physical plane; the inner and the outer being really one- the same consciousness manifesting on different planes of being. The only difference is, on the inner planes that which manifests is divested of all pretence, the soul stands forth naked and has no personality or mask to cover and hide its real nature, and similarly all else there are seen in their native purity. From this it will be seen that the soul automatically finds its own level or plane of consciousness, be it one of the abstract or concrete planes of the mental realms, or in the higher astral realms, assuming that the aspirant has evolved beyond the lower astral, where self and the darkness of ignorance rule.
It is now time to dissolve some of the mystery and by the same token some of the condemnation and stigma that attaches to the astral plane. For the astral is merely the plane of consciousness from which come all desires, feelings, emotions and passions, including love. Ponder on this statement. Can you not see that this being so, then every human soul is involved in the astral plane every time he lets any desire, feeling or emotion of whatsoever kind rule him and influence his thoughts, words and actions? The same way exactly as he is involved in the mental plane when some thought or idea claims his attention and rules his mind.
It is only when the psychic centers are prematurely opened-where spiritual growth has not opened them naturally-that there is trouble and the conscious soul is not always able to control the functioning of these centers, and it "sees" and "hears" or "feels" things that are not natural. But that is no harder than it is for one who is not "psychic" but is mental, and who has not learned fully to control his mind, and thoughts unbidden and unwanted come in and have their way with such. The only difference between the two is that the first named "sees," "hears" or "feels" psychically, while the other "sees," "hears" or "feels" mentally, but to each they seem as real as if in the physical.
The answer to this in both cases is mind-control, which must be gained before one can make any headway on the path to the Kingdom. In other words, the disciple sooner or later realizes that he must be able actually to stand guard at the door of his mind and admit only the thoughts and feelings he desires to entertain, and then must learn so to rule and train his mind that it thinks and holds only the perfect thoughts he wishes to outmanifest in his body and affairs.
We hope by this time that every student of these articles has realized the vital importance of mind-control, and has faithfully practiced the exercises given in the large meditation sheet, until he has proved to himself that he is master of his own mind. All students might as well know now that without such control conscious functioning on the soul and higher planes is impossible.