The Pursuit of Knowledge
B. P. WADIA
© 2000 Online Teosofiska Kompaniet
Each man is to himself absolutely the way, the truth, and the life....
The way and the truth come first, then follows the life.
– Light on the Path
Perception, inference, and testimony are declared by the ancient teachers to be the means of obtaining knowledge, whether fallible or infallible.
Knowledge is threefold: sense-knowledge, head learning, Heart-Wisdom. Each one of us, now and here, possesses a triple storehouse of knowledge. We have the powers of observation and of the sensations that are ours using the sense organs, offering data for one order of information. We have the power of the mind from mere cerebration to profound thinking – which yields to us our head learning. We have our emotions – lower passions or exalted aspirations – that manifest our Heart-life and bespeak our Heart-Wisdom.
All three are partial and faulty for all mortals. Those only who attain to true Immortality possess in perfection complete and infallible Wisdom. This is the coordinated, concordant, and complete Wisdom. Sense data are correctly comprehended by head learning, which in its turn is inspired by the pure light of the Heart, which is the seat of the Great Self. Real Immortality mortality means possessing this triple Wisdom.
Mortality implies not only death through the decay of the body but also the presence of ignorance about innumerable things in space, the motions of time and the events in history. Further, the separation which personal feelings and lack of altruism make between the human heart and the grand heart of Nature, which is Compassion Absolute.
Men suffer because the body decays, the mind continues to be ignorant and the heart remains selfish. Death is feared. Ignorance is found difficult to overcome. Selfishness is considered a natural inheritance of every man, woman, and child. From death to death mortals pass, knowing only sorrow at which they tap their foreheads and say, "Kismet."
The innate divinity at the very core of our being whispers, "There must be a way out of the death of the body, the darkness of ignorance, the corruption of selfishness." We do not seek the Way to Wisdom. We lose ourselves in our busyness to exist day after day, to eat, to earn, to pursue pleasures, to avoid pains. It hardly occurs to us to seek the meaning and the purpose of life. We do not live progressing from light to greater light, from love to deeper love, but stumble from confusion to corruption.
All Prophets and Perfected Men have pointed the Way. They have spoken the Truth. We remain ignorant about such instruction. the Gita and the Upanishads, the Gathas and the Kabbala, the Sermon on the Mount and the Epistles of Paul, the greatest of the Apostles – these are instinct with a life of their own. Many read them. Some read them with triple attention of eye, head, and heart. Only the rare few attempt to accept the advice. "Mistrust thy senses, they are false," or "Separate Head-learning from Soul-Wisdom," is advocated, or bring the heart to "Forsake every other religion and take refuge alone with the Great Self." We do not appreciate because we do not understand the promise contained in the potent words of Krishna: "I shall deliver thee from all thy transgressions."
There is the Path. There is Truth. If we find these, the possibility of living the Life is perceived, and the experience of Immortality is assured.
How are we to find the Path? There are diverse ways that the knowledge of materialistic sciences, of speculative philosophies, of creedal theologies, tells us about. Broad are these paths, visible and accessible to all. They have not led the educated and civilized man to the light, strength, and peace of Truth. The Upanishads call this lower knowledge, and name the Wisdom of the Supreme as the Higher.
But it is also taught that the Path to the Supreme True is inward – from thought and mind to Heart and Soul. It is taught that the Science of the mystic and the occultist is hidden, esoteric, named Gupta Vidya, and described as the Royal Wisdom. The search for that Way to Hidden Truth proceeds from the mundane and mortal mind to the Soul of Light in the Cave of the Heart. Awake, arise, seek the Great Teachers – it is said. Between the mortal and the Immortal, there is The Bridge. What is that Bridge?
B. P. WADIA
From "Thus Have I Heard", pages 171-73. Utgiven av Indian Institute of World Culture, 1959.
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