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The Zodiac and the Rays
What I have to say first on this subject is entirely of a preliminary nature. I seek to lay
the ground for a somewhat new approach-a far more esoteric approach to the science of
astrology. Certain things I may say will probably be regarded by the academic and
uninspired astrologer as revolutionary, or as erroneous, as improbable or unprovable. As
yet, however, astrology has not really proved itself to the world of thought and science,
in spite of many definitely demonstrable successes. I would ask all of you, therefore,
who read and study this section of A Treatise on the Seven Rays to bear in mind the
above comments and to preserve a willingness to consider hypotheses and to make an
effort to weigh a theory or suggestion and to test out conclusions over the course of a
few years. If you can do this, there may come to you an awakening of the intuition
which will translate modern astrology into something of real moment and significance to
the world. It is intuitional astrology which must eventually supersede what is today
called astrology, thus bringing about a return to the knowledge of that ancient science
which related the constellations and our solar system, drew attention to the nature of
the zodiac and informed humanity as to the basic inter-
4 A Treatise on the Seven Rays
relations which govern and control the phenomenal and subjective worlds.
I. Three Basic Statements.
The statement is frequently made that astrology is an exact science but that is
far from correct in spite of the many mathematical computations. Astrology is based,
curiously enough, upon illusion for, as well you know, the zodiac is naught but the
imaginary path of the sun through the heavens, and this as it appears from the
standpoint of our totally insignificant planet. The sun is not, as stated, in any sign of
the zodiac. It simply appears to be so as it passes between our little sphere, the Earth,
and the constellations at any particular time or season.
In ancient days it was believed that the earth was the centre of the solar system
and that around it revolved the sun and all the other planets. This was the exoteric
knowledge and position, though not the esoteric understanding. Later, when further
discoveries brought more light to the human mind, our planet was decentralised and the
truth was more clearly seen, though much remains as yet to be discovered and may even
he of as revolutionary a nature. From certain astrological angles, a similar process of
decentralisation must take place and the solar system must no longer be regarded as a
point around which the zodiac revolves or through which the sun passes in its great
cycle of approximately 25,0OO years. Astrologers with insight may deny that this is the
commonly accepted attitude. Yet-for purposes of clarity and in connection with the
general public-the inference is permitted and accepted by the ignorant. Upon this
theory anent the zodiac rests very largely what we call the Great Illusion, and I would
5 Esoteric Astrology
the newer approaches of this greatest and oldest of all the sciences. Astrology is a
science which must be restored to its original beauty and truth before the world can
gain a truer perspective and a more just and accurate appreciation of the divine PIan, as
it is expressed at this time through the Wisdom of the Ages.
The second statement which I would make is that astrology is essentially the
purest presentation of occult truth in the world at this time, because it is the science
which deals with those conditioning and governing energies and forces which play
through and upon the whole field of space and all that is found within that field. When
this fact is grasped and the sources of those energies are better comprehended and the
nature of the field of space is correctly understood, we shall then see a far wider and at
the same time a more closely related horizon; the relationships between individual,
planetary, systemic and cosmic entities will be grasped, and we shall then begin to live
scientifically. It is this scientific living which it is the immediate purpose of astrology to
At present, the position of the average believer in astrology is that he is an
individual of importance (at least to himself), that he is living on that important planet,
the Earth (important to humanity), and that, through astrology, he can discover his
destiny and know what he ought to do. In making this comment, I do not refer to those
few astrologers who possess real esoteric knowledge. They are few in number indeed,
and only a handful of them are to be found practising at this time. The modern
investigator likes to believe that on him impinge and through him flow all those energies
which come from the sign in which the sun "finds" itself at the time of his birth. He
6 Esoteric Astrology
self also as responsive to the forces of the various planets as they govern the houses in
his horoscope and he believes that his life trends and circumstances are thus
determined. This makes him feel himself to be a factor of isolated importance. Modern
interpretations fail to emphasise the importance of the rising sign (the ascendant) and
this has been due to the fact that few have been as yet ready to function as souls; small
allowance has been made for the energies which play upon our planet all the time from
other constellations or from the many "hidden" planets. Of these, the Ageless Wisdom
claims that there are around seventy in our solar system.
I desire to give you a truer and more accurate picture. This has now become
possible because group awareness, group relations and group integrity are coming to the
fore in the human consciousness. As this takes place, the personality which is
individual, separative and self-centered will recede increasingly into the background,
and the soul, non-separative, group conscious and inclusive, will come more and more to
the fore. Interest, therefore, in the individual horoscope will gradually die out, and
increasingly the planetary, the systemic and the universal picture will stand out in the
awareness of the individual; he will then regard himself only as an integral part of a far
more important whole and his world group will interest him far more than himself, as
I shall not, therefore, deal with the subject of esoteric astrology from the
standpoint of the horoscope at all. Universal relationships, the interplay of energies, the
nature of what lies behind the Great Illusion, the deluding "Appearances of things as
them are," and the destiny of our planet, of the kingdoms in nature and of humanity as
a whole-these will constitute the major part of our theme.
7 Esoteric Astrology
It is immaterial to me whether modern astrologers accept or reject these presented
ideas. I will endeavour to give you certain facts as the Hierarchy recognises them; I will
indicate, if I can, the subjective realities of which the outer illusion is but the
phenomenal appearance, conditioned by men's thoughts throughout the ages; I will
emphasise the fact of the livingness of the Sources from which all the energies and
forces which play upon our planet flow and emanate; I will endeavour, above all else, to
demonstrate to you that all-pervading unity and that underlying synthesis which is the
basis of all religions and of all the many transmitted forces; I will seek to remove you, as
individuals, from out of the centre of your own stage and consciousness and-without
depriving you of individuality and of self-identity -yet show you how you are part of a
greater whole of which you can become consciously aware when you can function as
souls, but of which you are today unconscious, or at least only registering and sensing
the inner reality in which you live and move and have your being.
This brings me to the third statement, which is so basic and fundamental that I
would ask you to pause and contemplate it, even though you grasp not its full
implications as yet. The Ancient Wisdom teaches that "space is an entity." It is with the
life of this entity and with the forces and energies, the impulses and the rhythms, the
cycles and the times and seasons that esoteric astrology deals. H. P. B. stated this in
The Secret Doctrine. I would remind you that there is an astrological key to The Secret
Doctrine which cannot yet be given in completeness. I can, however, give you some hints
and suggest some lines of approach, and these, if carried in the consciousness of the
illumined astrologers, may enable one of them at a later date to discover that key and
then-turning it on behalf of humanity-
8 Esoteric Astrology
reveal the fourth great fundamental of the Ageless Wisdom of which three are already
given in the proem of The Secret Doctrine.
Space is an entity and the entire "vault of heaven" (as it has been poetically
called) is the phenomenal appearance of that entity. You will note that I did not say the
material appearance, but the phenomenal appearance. Speculation about the nature,
the history and identity of that entity is useless and of no value. Some dim idea,
providing analogy even when eluding specifications, might be gained if you will
endeavour to think of the human family, the fourth kingdom in nature, as an entity, as
constituting a single unit, expressing itself through the many diversified forms of man.
You, as an individual, are an integral part of humanity, yet you lead your own life, you
react to your own impressions, you respond to exterior influences and impacts, and in
your turn you emanate influences, send forth some form of character radiation and
express some quality or qualities. You thereby, and in some measure, affect your
environment and those whom you contact. Yet all the while you remain part of a
phenomenal entity to which we give the name of humanity. Now extend this idea to a
greater phenomenal entity, the solar system. This entity is itself an integral part of a
still greater life which is expressing Itself through seven solar systems, of which ours is
one. If you can grasp this idea, a vague picture of a great underlying esoteric truth will
emerge into your consciousness. It is the life and the influence, the radiations and
emanations of this entity, and their united effect on our planetary life, the kingdoms in
nature and the unfolding human civilizations, which we shall have briefly to consider.
The subject is so vast that I have been faced with the problem of the best
method whereby to handle it. I de-
9 The Zodiac and the Rays
cited on brevity, the concise statement of facts (facts to those of us who are working on
the inner side of life, but which must rightly be only hypotheses to you) and the
avoidance of detail and of detailed discussion. We will endeavour to work from the
universal to the particular and from the general to the specific, but our emphasis will
always be on the universal and the general, and not upon the particular and specific. It
will rest with those of you who are students of astrology to make due application of the
truth to the specific. It is definitely in this connection that modern astrology has gone
astray. It has reversed the true and right procedure and has laid the emphasis upon the
specific and particular, upon the personal horoscope and the individual destiny, and has
not laid the emphasis upon the great energies and their Source. These sources are
ultimately responsible for the manifestation of the specific. This position and
presentation of truth must be altered.
In esoteric astrology we are, therefore, dealing with the Life and Lives which
inform the "points of light" within the universal Life. Constellations, solar systems,
planets, kingdoms in nature and microscopic man are all of them the result of the
activity and the manifestation of energy of certain Lives whose cycle of expression and
whose infinite purposes lie outside the comprehension of the most advanced and
illumined minds on our planet.
The next point for each of you to grasp is the fact that the ether of space is the
field in and through which the energies from the mane originating Sources play. We
are, therefore, concerned with the etheric body of the planet, of the solar system, and of
the seven solar systems of which our system is one, as well as with the general and
vaster etheric body of the universe in which we are located. I employ the word "located"
here with deliberation and because
10 A Treatise on the Seven Rays
of the inferences to which it leads. This vaster field, as well as the smaller and more
localised fields, provides the medium of transmission for all the energies which play
upon and through our solar system, our planetary spheres and all forms of life upon
those spheres. It forms one unbroken field of activity in constant ceaseless motion-an
eternal medium for the exchange and transmission of energies.
In connection with this, and in order more correctly to understand, it will be
useful to study individual man; in this way we can arrive at a faint comprehension of
the basic and underlying truth. Students should never forget the Law of Analogy as an
interpretive agency. Esotericism teaches (and modern science is rapidly arriving at the
same conclusion) that underlying the physical body and its comprehensive and intricate
system of nerves is a vital or etheric body which is the counterpart and the true form of
the outer and tangible phenomenal aspect. It is likewise the medium for the
transmission of force to all parts of the human frame and the agent of the indwelling
life and consciousness. It determines and conditions the physical body, for it is itself
the repository and the transmitter of energy from the various subjective aspects of man
and also from the environment in which man (both inner and outer man) finds himself.
Two other points should here be added. First: the individual etheric body is not
an isolated and separated human vehicle but is, in a peculiar sense, an integral part of
the etheric body of that entity which we have called the human family; this kingdom in
nature, through its etheric body, is an integral part of the planetary etheric body; the
planetary etheric body is not separated from the etheric bodies of other planets but all
of them in their totality, along with the etheric body of the sun constitute the etheric
11 The Zodiac and the Rays
body of the solar system. This is related to the etheric bodies of the six solar systems
which, with ours, form a cosmic unity and into these pour energies and forces from
certain great constellations. The field of space is etheric in nature and its vital body is
composed of the totality of etheric bodies of all constellations, solar systems and planets
which are found therein. Throughout this cosmic golden web there is a constant
circulation of energies and forces and this constitutes the scientific basis of the
astrological theories. Just as the forces of the planet and of the inner spiritual man (to
mention only one factor among many) pour through the etheric body of the individual
man upon the physical plane, and condition his outer expression, activities, and
qualities, so do the varying forces of the universe pour through every part of the etheric
body of that entity we call space and condition and determine the outer expression, the
activities and qualities of every form found within the cosmic periphery.
The second point I would make is that within the human etheric body there are
to be found seven major force centers which are in the nature of distributing agencies
and electrical batteries, providing dynamic force and qualitative energy to the man; they
produce definite effects upon his outer physical manifestation. Through their constant
activity his quality appears, his ray tendencies begin to emerge and his point in evolution
is clearly indicated.
This "control of form through a septenate of energies" (as it is defined in the Old
Commentary is an unalterable rule in the inner government of our universe and of our
particular solar system, as well as in the case of individual man. There are, for
instance, in our solar system, seven sacred planets which correspond to the seven
individual force centers in man, the seven solar systems, of which
12 A Treatise on the Seven Rays
our solar system is one, and in their turn the seven energy centers of the One to Whom I
have referred in my other books as the One About Whom Naught Can Be Said.
Much has been given in the occult books of which the average astrologer remains
profoundly unaware. It is essential that he learns to think in larger Wholes and to be
more deeply concerned with the emanating Sources and with the eternal persistent
Causes than with the effects of these Sources upon that ephemeral creation, a human
being and his temporary existence upon a most unimportant planet. As he seeks to do
this, he will discover for himself the signs of the essential divinity of man-a divinity
which is to be found in the infinite grasp of man's consciousness when illumined by the
light of the soul and in his power to project his thought into the consciousness of those
manifold Lives Whose "energetic movements" he must perforce share because his small
modicum of energy is an integral part of Theirs.
There is one aspect of energy for which the modern astrologer makes very little
allowance, and yet it is of paramount importance. This is the energy which emanates
from or radiates from the Earth itself. Living as all human beings do upon the surface
of the Earth and being, therefore, projected into the etheric body of the planet (for the
reason that "man stands erect") man's body is at all times bathed in the emanations
and the radiations of our Earth and in the integral quality of our planetary Logos as He
sends forth and transmits energy within His planetary environment. Astrologers have
always the incoming influences and energies as they beat upon and play through our
little planet, but they have omitted to take into adequate consideration the emanating
qualities and forces which are the contribution of our Earth's etheric
13 The Zodiac and the Rays
body to the larger whole. This we will consider later, but I felt the necessity of calling
your attention to it at this time.
Another point which should here be noted is that the influence of the moon is
purely symbolic in nature and in effect and is simply the result of ancient thought and
teaching (descended to us from Lemurian times) and is not based upon any true
radiation or influence. In those far off times, antedating even Lemuria and constituting
in Lemurian days simply an ancient tradition, the moon appeared to be a living vital
entity. But I would have you bear definitely in mind that today the moon is nothing
more than a dead form. It has no emanation and no radiation of any kind and,
therefore, has no effect of any kind. The moon, from the angle of the esoteric knower,
is simply an obstruction in space-an undesirable form which must some day disappear.
In esoteric astrology, the effect of the moon is noted as a thought effect and as the
result of a powerful and most ancient thoughtform; nevertheless, the moon has no
quality of her own and can transmit nothing to the Earth. Let me reiterate: The moon is
a dead form; it has no emanation at all. That is why the moon is spoken of in the
ancient teaching as "veiling either Vulcan or Uranus." This hint or inference has always
been here and astrologers would do well to experiment with this suggestion I have made
anent the moon and (instead of working with the moon) let them work with Vulcan
when dealing with the undeveloped or average man and with Uranus when considering
the highly developed man. They would find some interesting and convincing results
Students would also do well to remember that the twelve constellations which
constitute our particular zodiac are themselves the recipients of many streams of energy
coming to them from many sources. These blend and fuse with the
14 A Treatise on the Seven Rays
energy of any particular constellation and-transmuted and "occultly refined"-eventually
find their way into our solar system.
I would like to call attention, at this point, to some comments 5
made in A Treatise on Cosmic Fire which are apposite and helpful. I am somewhat
"Astrology is concerned with the effect produced in
the substance of the sheaths by the influences, vibrations, etc., of the various planets.
These are, esoterically, the influences of the solar centers. The forces, emanating from
the solar centers, play upon the planetary centers. ... This is hidden in the karma of the
Heavenly Man. When true esoteric astrology comes into being, more anent this will be
given. Astrological students are today only learning the ABC of this stupendous subject
and are occupied with the exoteric fringes of that great veil which has been thrown
wisely over planetary lore."
(A Treatise on Cosmic Fire, p. 1051)
The following is a list-incomplete but adequate for our purposes-of
the major influences which find their way from far distant Sources into our planetary
life and produce definite effects upon individual man and humanity as a whole.
1. The constellation of the Great Bear
I. 2. The Seven Sisters of the Pleiades.
3. Sirius, the Dog Star.
1. The seven solar systems of
II. which ours is one.
2. The seven sacred planets of which ours is not one.
1. The seven planetary centers.
2. The seven centers of force in the human etheric
15 The Zodiac and the Rays
We thus have a ninefold energy impact. This is a major chart but it should be
remembered that there are other impacts of relative insignificance.
To these would be added other streams of energy which definitely play upon and
affect our planetary life, such as those coming from that great star, Betelgeuse, or from
Antares and other stupendous suns and solar systems which are related to the
constellations of the zodiac and whose force reaches us through these constellations
and not directly.
Besides these, it should be remembered that technically we should also add the
radiatory influence which comes direct to us from the planet, the Earth, upon which we
live. Then, and only then, can you have a fairly complete analysis and picture of the
energies to which the etheric body of man (conditioning the physical body which is pre-
eminently automatic and negative in its reactions) must and does ever respond. An
understanding of that response and the conscious intelligent control of individual
reactions are supremely necessary to man but only become possible at a fairly advanced
stage of development and as he nears the bath (technically understood). Man learns
first of all to control his reactions to the planets as they rule and direct his personality
affairs from their different "stations" in the twelve houses of his horoscope. There are
two ways in which this is done:
First: By having the horoscope duly cast and then tak-
17 The Zodiac and the Rays
ing steps to determine what should be done to negate the planetary influences where it
is deemed desirable to control the personality reactions. This has to be done by the
applied power of thought. This necessitates complete confidence in the understanding
and interpretation of the astrologer and the recognition of the exact moment of birth.
One wonders if these conditions of the exact moment and the completely wise astrologer
are ever to be found as yet.
Second: By consciously assuming the position of the spiritual Observer, and by
cultivating the power to respond to the Soul. Then, from the angle of that Soul, the man
must learn to control circumstance and the attendant reactions of the personality.
The following attitudes and positions taken by the esoteric astrologer should also
1. That the planetary influences indicate the trend of the outer life circumstances.
When correctly interpreted for the average man and for the unevolved man, they can
and do indicate the personality destiny and fate; they do condition and completely
control the man who has no conscious soul experience. The moment that a man
becomes aware of his own soul and is endeavouring to control his own "path in life," the
influence of the planets, per se, definitely weakens and steadily becomes less and less;
his personality chart appears inconclusive and often most inaccurate. It is the force
flowing through the planets and not the force of the planets themselves which then
governs and controls. The man then becomes receptive to the subtler and higher
energies of the solar system and of the twelve governing constellations.
2. That the Sun sign, as it is called, indicates the nature of the man, physical,
mental and spiritual. It holds the
19 A Treatise on the Seven Rays
secret of the personality ray and of the man's responsiveness or lack of
responsiveness to the Soul, the real man. It indicates also the integration already
achieved and the present point of unfoldment of the soul qualities, of the present
available equipment, of the present life quality and of the immediately possible group
relations. It indicates, from the angle of the Ageless Wisdom, nothing more. This is a
reversal of the usual astrological position. The reason that t prefer this is that
humanity is enough evolved so that the astrology of the soul will become possible before
long; it constitutes-from many points of view-a reversal of normal procedure. This is
both wise and necessary, and also inevitable. Astrologers will eventually be divided into
two classes: the exoteric astrologers who will be occupied with the horoscope of the
personality, and the esoteric astrologers who will be occupied with the purposes of the
3. That the rising sign indicates the remoter possibilities, and the spiritual goal and
purpose of the immediate incarnation and of the immediate succeeding incarnations.
This sign concerns itself with the struggle of the spiritual man "to carry on" from the
point achieved so that when the life energy is temporarily exhausted and the "death of
the personality" takes place, the man finds himself "nearer the centre of his life, closer
to the centre of his group and approaching the centre of divine life," as the Ageless
Wisdom expresses it. This particular phrase "death of the personality" has two definite
a. It may mean the death of the physical body, which is inevitably
followed by the two stages of the
18 A Treatise on the Seven Rays
death of the emotional vehicle and the subsequent dissipation of
the temporary and ever-changing form which the quota of mental energy has assumed
b. The subjective and mystical "death of the personality." This is a
phrase indicating the transfer of the focus for the distribution of energy from the
personality (a definite centre of force) to the soul (another definite centre).
I realise that these concepts are not in line with the usual astrological
postulates. However, astrology would not be wasting time if it experimented with these
ideas for a while. Astrologers might discover some most interesting and arresting
problems and perhaps arrive at an accuracy which is at present unknown. It might be
of some service if I enlarged somewhat upon this point:
In connection with the sun sign, the rising sign and the effect of the
thoughtform relating to the moon, the position of esoteric astrology is as follows:
1. The sun sign.-This sign indicates the present problem of the man; it sets the
pace or the established tempo of his personality life; it is related to quality,
temperament and the life tendencies which are seeking expression during this
particular incarnation, and it is suggestive of the rajasic or the activity aspect of the
innate man. Fundamentally, the forces here found are indicative of the line of least
2. The ascendant or rising sign indicates the intended life or immediate soul
purpose for this incarnation. It holds the secret of the future and presents the force
which, when rightly used, will lead the man to success. It represents
The Zodiac and the Rays 19
the sattvic or harmony aspect of life and can produce right relationship between soul
and personality in any one incarnation. It thus points the way to the recognition of the
force of the soul.
3. The moon-This type of force (coming from certain planets and not from the
moon) indicates that which is past. It, therefore, summarises limitation and the
present handicaps. It governs the physical body and shows where the prison of the soul
is to be found.
The next statement which I would like to make, and which grows normally out of
the above, is that the zodiacal, the systemic and the planetary energies act either as
hindering or as stimulating forces, according to the type of vehicle or body upon which
they play; the nature of these vehicles and their capacity to attract, to respond, to
reject, to absorb and to transmute is entirely dependent upon the point in evolution
attained and also upon the general planetary condition and psychology to be found in
the human family at any given time. An instance of the latter can be seen today in the
world where the forces, beating in an almost violent and somewhat new measure and
tempo upon our planetary life, are evoking a greatly intensified response from the world
thinkers, thus stimulating them to earnest effort along ideological lines and, at the
same time, are drawing forth from the masses and the little evolved people nothing but
terror, a miserable fatalism, widespread physical depletion and many other undesirable
reactions from the form nature. An understanding of these hindering or stimulating
effects can be easily grasped by those who can comprehend the nature of the activities
of the planet, Saturn. This is the planet which conditions primarily the point in
evolution where choice definitely becomes possible,
where rejection of opportunity or its acceptance can consciously be undertaken, and the
shouldering of personal responsibility becomes a recognised fact in a planned and
ordered life. This point in the human evolutionary process is spoken of in the Old
Commentary in the following symbolic phrases:
"Amid the whirling forces, I stand confused. 1 know them not, for, during
all my past, they swept me up and down the land wherein I moved, blinded and
unaware. From place to place and point to point, they drove me up and down the land
and nowhere was there rest.
I know them now and here I stand and will not move until I know the
Law which governs all this movement up and down the land. I may revolve and turning
face the many different ways; I face some wide horizons and yet today I stand.
I will determine for myself the way to go. Then onward I will move. I will
not travel up and down the land nor turn in space. But onward I will move."
There is another revolutionary idea which the esoteric science of astrology brings
to its modern and exoteric aspect: In the greater cycle of man's many incarnations, he-
as is well recognised-passes through the zodiacal circle from Pisces to Aries, thus
retrograding through the signs as he follows the sweep or path of the Sun's
retrogression. This phrase has always disturbed me, but the apparent retrogression,
based upon the precession of the equinoxes, is all an integral part of the Great Illusion.
The moment a man begins to emerge out of that illusion and is no longer subject to the
glamour and to the effect of the world maya, that moment the motion of the great
Wheel of Life
is reversed and he then begins (slowly and laboriously) to work in the opposite direction.
He then passes through the signs from Aries to Pisces. He begins patiently and
consciously to function as a soul struggling towards the light until finally he emerges at
the end of the Path in Pisces as a world Victor and a world Saviour. He then knows the
significance of the triumph over death because he has surmounted and overcome desire.
This reversal of the way a man travels through the signs of the zodiac will
necessitate a readjustment of the method employed by astrologers when they are
casting a horoscope of senior aspirants, of disciples and of initiates.
According, therefore, to an individual's point of evolution upon the Path or (in
other words) the individual's place upon the wheel of life, the practising astrologer will
arrange the interpretation of the horoscope. It will require the work and the thought of
the intuitive astrologer, dependent upon soul contact and much meditation, to
determine the processes of astrological interpretation for those who are active and living
souls at some one or other of the final stages upon the Path. The casting of the
horoscope of the average man or the undeveloped man presents no such difficulties.
It might be added in addition that the signs of the zodiac are concerned primarily
with the life expression of the Heavenly Man (as far as our planet is concerned) and
therefore with the destiny and life of the planetary Logos. They are also concerned with
the great Man of the heavens, the solar Logos. I refer in this last instance to their effect
as it makes itself felt in the solar system as a whole and with this effect there are few
astrologers at this time fit to deal. I would remind you that to the lives who inform
these great constellations and whose radia
22 A Treatise on the Seven Rays
tion-dynamic and magnetic-reaches our Earth, this effect is incidental and unnoticed.
The primary effect that they have is upon our planetary Logos and this effect reaches
us through Him, pouring through that great planetary centre
to which we have given the name of Shamballa. It is, therefore, capable of evoking the
major response from the monads, and these monads express themselves through the
kingdom of souls and through the human kingdom; it consequently expresses itself
through the Hierarchy and through humanity as a whole. This is a point of real
importance and should be noted and connected with all the teaching you have had upon
this most interesting theme of the three major planetary centers. It is the work of the
zodiacal influences to evoke the emergence of the will aspect of the Heavenly Man and of
all monads, souls and personalities who constitute the planetary body of expression.
This statement means but little to you today but it will mean much to those students
who, in a few decades, will study what I am here saying. Properly understood, it
accounts for much that is happening in the world at this time.
As these influences pour through our planet and thence to the centers of force
upon the planet, they produce a dual effect:
1. They produce an effect upon advanced man, galvanising the centers above the
diaphragm into activity and enabling him to respond to the radiation and the activity of
2. They produce an effect upon unevolved man, enabling him to function as an
ordinary unenlightened human,
It should be noted here, however, that all the energies-zodiacal, systemic, and planetary-
have a definite effect
23 The Zodiac and the Rays
upon all the lives in all forms in all kingdoms of nature. Nothing can escape these
radiatory and magnetic influences. The goal of evolution for humanity is to become
consciously and livingly aware of the nature of these energies and begin to know them
and to use them. This is the field of occultism as the Hierarchy has always told men. It
might be stated that the disciple has to become consciously aware of the planetary
influences and begin to use them for the carrying out of soul purpose. The initiate has
to be aware of the zodiacal influences which emanate from outside of the solar system
altogether. These can be recognised as
a. A vibration, registered in one or other of the seven centers.
b. A revelation of a particular type of light, conveying a specific colour to the
c. A peculiar note.
d. A directional sound.
The whole story of the zodiac can be picturesquely yet accurately summed up in the
following statement: There are three books which the three types of human beings
study and from which they learn:
1. The Book of Life-Initiates-the 12 constellations.
2. The Book of Wisdom-Disciples-the 12
3. The Book of Form or of manifestation-Humanity-the 12 Creative Hierarchies.
In summation, it might be said that:
1. The zodiacal signs affect primarily the man who lives below the diaphragm. This
is the ordinary average man. These signs thus condition four of the centers:
24 A Treatise on the Seven Rays
a. The base of the spine.
b. The sacral centre.
c. The solar plexus centre.
d. The spleen.
2. The inner group of solar systems, working in conjunction with the zodiacal signs,
affect primarily those who live above the diaphragm. They therefore, condition. '
a. The heart centre.
b. The throat centre.
c. The ajna centre.
d. The head centre.
3. Three of the energies work through the head centre but only after the third
There are one or two other points which might be nosed here also. I note them for your
enlightenment. Out of all the many energies which impinge upon, pass through and
produce effects upon our planet, esoteric astrology emphasises the following four types
of force because they affect what might be called the personality of our Earth:
1. The quality of our solar system. God is a consuming fire but God is also love.
This is the teaching of both esoteric and exoteric truth.
2. The quality of the Logos of our planet as it pours through the chains, the rounds,
the races, and the kingdoms of nature.
3. The quality of the Earth's complementary planet, which is the Earth's polar
opposite, esoterically considered. This planet is Venus.
4. The quality of the attraction of the three planets which produce an esoteric
triangle of force.
25 The Zodiac and the Rays
I have several times used the phrase "pass through" the centers and forms. This
concept necessitates the idea of distributing centers to which the incoming energies
may go and from which they may pass out again as radiation. Some idea of this might
be grasped if I gave you the new proposition (new to you though old to esotericists) of the
centers in the human etheric body. The four centers above the diaphragm-the heart,
throat, ajna and head centers-are basically and primarily receiving centers. The centers
below the diaphragm-the base of the spine, the sacral, solar plexus and spleen centers-
are galvanised into activity by the four higher receiving centers. This, when
accomplished, demonstrates as personality and physical magnetism and influence until
the time comes when there is a reversal in the way of passing-as a soul-around the
zodiac. This is symbolised as the revolution of the sun around the zodiac from Aries to
Pisces instead of the reverse movement, from Aries to Taurus. This is repeated in the
human frame and the four lower centers eventually return that which has come to
them. They thus reverse the process normally followed and the centers above the
diaphragm become radio-active, dynamic and magnetic. This is an intricate occult study
and is concerned with the response of the etheric body to the incoming energies. It
relates finally the lowest centre at the base of the spine to the highest centre, the head
centre. This is a correspondence to the relation of the Earth to the Sun. Think this out.
As we work and study over these matters, let us bear in mind always the fact
that we are considering the seven rays and their inter-relations in the cosmic process.
We are concerned esoterically with:
1. The seven rays and the twelve signs of the zodiac.
26 A Treatise on the Seven Rays
2. The seven rays and the twelve Creative Hierarchies.
3. The seven rays and the planets as they govern the twelve houses of expression.
As we ponder and think and as we correlate the various aspects of the teaching,
we shall find three propositions emerging which govern the inflow of life to the planet
and to the individual man. These have been laid down earlier in A Treatise on the
Seven Rays but it might profit us to state them here:
Proposition One-Every ray life is an expression of a solar life and every planet is
1. Linked with every other planetary life.
2. Animated by energy pouring into it from the seven solar systems,
of which ours is one.
3. Actuated by three streams of force:
a. Coming from solar systems other than our
b. Our own solar system.
c. Our own planetary life.
Proposition Two-Each one of the ray lives is the recipient and the custodian of energies
1. The seven solar systems.
2. The twelve constellations.
Proposition Three-It is the quality of a ray life manifesting in time and space-which
determines the phenomenal appearance.
Before we penetrate further into the consideration of our theme, I would like to
emphasise two points:
First of all, that we are considering esoteric influences and not astrology, per se.
Our subject is the seven rays and
27 The Zodiac and the Rays
their relationship to the zodiacal constellations or-in other words-the interaction of the
seven great Lives which inform our solar system with the twelve constellations which
compose our zodiac.
Secondly, that we have necessarily to study these energies and their interplay
from the angle of their effect upon the planet, and incidentally, their effect upon the
forms in the various kingdoms of nature and particularly in connection tion with the
fourth kingdom, the human, and with individual man-average man, the disciple and
We shall enter into no definitions in connection with technical astrology, nor
shall I use the many technical terms. If, in the presentation of this vast subject, and in
the process of indicating the attitude of the Ageless Wisdom to this new and coming (yet
very ancient) "science of effective energies," as it has been called, I may present a new
approach, or point out an unsuspected relation and from the standpoint of the Ageless
Wisdom correct what are deemed errors by the Teachers on the inner side of life, I am
hoping that some astrologers may be found who will be sensitive to that which is new. I
am believing that there are investigators along astrological lines who will be open-
minded enough to recognise possible hypotheses and then to make fair experiment with
them. May I repeat: I am not writing a treatise upon astrology, but one upon the seven
rays and their equivalent and corresponding energies, upon the effects of ray energy and
the interplay of these energies with, and their effect upon, the various planetary forces,
particularly those of the Earth. I am looking for these fair-minded astrologers to make
due experiment with the factors and suggestions which I may indicate. With this in
mind, let us proceed.
28 A Treatise on the Seven Rays
I have pointed out that these energies fall into three groups:
1. Those coming from certain great constellations which are to be found active in
relation to our solar system and which, from the most ancient days, have always been
related in myth and legend to our system. To these constellations, ours is related in a
2. Those coming from the twelve zodiacal constellations. These are recognised as
having a definite effect upon our system and our planetary life.
3. Those coming from the planets found within the periphery of the Sun's sphere of
From a certain point of view, one can generalise largely and say that these are
the correspondences in the solar system to the three great centers of force which
produce and control manifestation and evolutionary progress in the human being:
1. The great exterior, yet controlling, constellations are analogous to that centre of
force which we call the Monad and to its universal will-to-power which is distinctive of
the first divine aspect.
2. The twelve constellations might be regarded as embodying the soul aspect and,
for the present, their effect upon the individual must be regarded and should be studied
in terms of consciousness and of the development of the life of the soul. This is in
essence the will-to-love.
3. The planets, twelve in number (seven sacred planets and five non-sacred), are
effective (using the word in a technical sense) in relation to the external life,
environment and circumstances of the individual. Their force contacts should be
interpreted largely in terms of the human
29 The Zodiac and the Rays
personality, the third divine aspect. They thus exemplify the will-to-know.
I would have you remember that I am talking entirely in terms of consciousness
and of the responses and reactions of the individual to the forces which impinge upon
him. The effect of the emanation of our planet, the Earth, is a correspondence to the
effect of that aggregate of atoms and molecules which we call the dense physical body
and of its response to the pull and the attraction of any or all of the subtler bodies.
As regards the influence of the seven solar systems, I should suggest (more I
cannot do) that they are linked up astrologically with the constellations, the Great Bear,
the Pleiades, and Sirius. They are intimately related to them, but their exact effect is a
transmitted one and cannot be noted as producing noticeable results, as yet, upon
humanity and the other kingdoms in nature. The effect of the three great
constellations also cannot be noted by individual man until such time as he becomes
conscious of the monadic vibration, after the third initiation. There are many potent
influences playing upon our solar system and the planet all the time but-as far as man
is concerned-his response apparatus and his mechanism of reaction remain what is
called "occultly unresponsive," for they are not yet of a quality which will permit any
noticeable recognition, either in the dense or subtler vehicles or even by the soul. Later
in the evolutionary process, recognition and response will come, but for all astrological
purposes and recognisable produced effects, they may be regarded today as non-existent
except as they react upon the fourth kingdom of nature as it constitutes a living unit in
the body of the planetary Logos. As little conscious effect is produced by these forces as
the effect of a
high moment of contact in your morning meditation produces an effect upon the atom
or cell in the little finger upon one of your hands. There may be a general response and
stimulation throughout the entire body, but the intelligent atom makes no conscious
response. The vibration is of too high a character.
Speculation along these lines is profitless. A vast system of interlocking energies
is in active and rapid circulation throughout the whole cosmic etheric body-of which our
systemic etheric body is an integral part-but speculative research along the indicated
lines and the following of obscure trails are utterly futile until the main highway of
approach has been constructed and followed. The general outline of the astrological way
is all that is possible today until the time when man can think in larger wholes and has
a more synthetic capacity. We shall confine ourselves to the vast field of energies which
I have outlined for your consideration and shall consider only the major forces which are
in circulation. This will suffice for our day and generation. We are concerned with
energies which can and do evoke response and of which man can be aware and, in many
cases, is today aware.
It might be useful here to comment in a wide and general way, and with many
necessary reservations, upon the broad sweep of some of these responses:
1. Undeveloped humanity is primarily conditioned in its life and circumstances by
the influence of the lesser zodiac and thus by the position of the planets in the twelve
2. Average intelligent humanity and those nearing the Path of Discipleship and
upon the Probationary Path respond consciously to
The Zodiac and the Rays 31
a. The planets, affecting their personalities.
b. The Sun sign, as indicating life trends which are already
established and which constitute the line of least resistance.
c. The rising sign in a small measure. This indicates the life goal for
that particular life cycle or else over a period of seven lives. The last two constitute the
3. Disciples and initiates can begin consciously to respond to all the above
influences, handling them constructively, plus those potent yet infinitely subtle forces
which pour into our solar system from the three major constellations referred to above.
In the early stages, the response is in the subtler bodies and the brain fails to register
them, but after the third initiation, there is a recognition of them upon the physical
Bringing the theme back to the subject of this treatise, which is that of the
seven rays, I would point out that these rays have a close connection with the seven
stars of the Great Bear (again always the four and the three as a secondary
differentiation) and to the seven Sisters, the Pleiades, The first constellation is the
agent of positive force to the planetary Logos and the other the relayer of the negative
aspect. There is, therefore, a direct interchange of energies between the lives of the
seven planetary Logoi and the stupendous and unfathomable Lives Who inform these
major constellations. Great interlocking triangles of force can be found existing
between the seven planets and these two groups of seven stars each. It will eventually
be discovered that the innermost secret of astrological deduction in the planetary sense
is connected with these "sacred triangles," and they are-in their turn-represented by the
32 A Treatise on the Seven Rays
(shifting and changing) which can be constructed in connection with the seven centers.
In casting the horoscope of the planet (which will some day be possible) it will be
found that the line of these forces and of our planetary response to them is of a more
potent effect than is the influence of the zodiacal constellations upon the human unit.
This is due to the immeasurably advanced point in evolution of the planetary Spirits
Who have (in Their individual lives) largely transcended the influence of the twelve
constellations and are becoming rapidly responsive to the higher vibrations of their great
Prototypes, the "three intimate constellations," as they have esoterically been called.
This is a correspondence in the lives of these great Entities to the manner in which an
advanced individual can offset the influence of the planets and thus so dominate his
personality life that prediction and certainty, as to activity and circumstance, are no
longer possible. The soul is dominating, and the planets cease to condition the life. So it
is with the constellations and the planetary Logoi. They can of offset the lower
influences as They awaken to and respond to the infinitely higher vibrations of the
three major constellations.
2. The Creative Hierarchies.
It might here be appropriate if I interpolated a chart or a tabulation which may
be found suggestive of some of these interlocking energies which play through, traverse,
return, stimulate and energise every part of our solar system. They only evoke conscious
response where the vehicle of expression and of response is adequate to the impact, and
this statement is true of the solar Logos, the planetary Logoi, and of all forms in all the
kingdoms upon our planet.
The Zodiac and the Rays 33
Unconscious reaction will of course exist, but it will be on a general or mass scale, and
much of it pours through to us from these distant constellations, via the fifth Creative
Hierarchy. This Hierarchy, being on the verge of liberation, is to be found on the
intellectual level of consciousness and can, therefore, be used as a focal point and a
transmitter of the higher energies to our solar system and to the planet. If you make a
careful study of the chart of the twelve Creative Hierarchies, page 34, you will note that
this Hierarchy is influencing, and is influenced by, the seventh Ray of Magical Order
and of Ceremonial Organisation. The basic function of this ray is to relate spirit and
matter and produce the manifested form. The sign of the zodiac with which it is closely
connected is that of Cancer, the Crab, which is a mass sign and one of the "gates" into
The following information anent the Hierarchies may prove useful. It has been
gathered from various sources.
I might here remind you that the seven planes of our solar system are the seven
subplanes of the cosmic physical plane. The four Creative Hierarchies which have
achieved liberation are now to be found focussed upon the cosmic astral plane; hence
their potency even when out of manifestation. The fifth Creative Hierarchy exists on
the highest etheric level and will join the other four Hierarchies when the sixth Creative
Hierarchy has measured up to cosmic opportunity and is itself nearing liberation. The
following is a tabulation showing some of the astrological relationships in connection
1. The constellation of the Great Bear.
2. The Pleiades or the Seven Sisters.
4. The seven solar systems.