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Metaphysical Development & Disciplines Part 1
The Need for a Guru In the spiritual, metaphysical path, various disciplines and exercises are conducted to aid the awakening and the unfoldment of the faculties and virtues of the divinity within. To attune with the Higher Self, one is required to undergo the process of purification and to carry-out meditative exercises. Meditation, concentration, visualizations, chanting, esoteric rituals, and other spiritual disciplines are utilized as aids on the path of spiritual and metaphysical development. In order to tread the metaphysical path a spiritual teacher or Guru is indispensable as a way-shower. The Guru or Adept having been on the spiritual path for many years, or for the greater part of his/her life, or even for several lifetimes is qualified to guide the enthusiastic aspirant. Treading the spiritual path alone without outside assistance and guidance is a difficult task.
Only a few great souls are able to do this. However, it should be noted that according to tradition and occult revelation, even great souls like Jesus and the Prophet Muhammad had Guru-Chela relationships with Spiritual Masters, both physical and non-physical. External spiritual preceptors are here to "push" or motivate the aspirant, just as the inner divine Master is present within our beings to "pull" us inwards, to help us gravitate towards the Inner Light. Learning from books has its disadvantages; firstly, one is unable to bask in the presence of a Guru. A genuine Guru radiates powerful energies that stimulate slumbering souls in his immediate vicinity.
The Master's aura prompts the energy-level of those around him to step-up in frequency. By constantly being in the presence of a Guru one gradually transforms one's microcosmic vehicles to a higher expression. One accelerates spiritually by being in the proximity of a Spiritual Preceptor. It is like a magnet that induces iron bits to become magnetized just as it is simply by the association. Secondly, books do not provide all of the keys or knowledge necessary that would open metaphysical doorways to higher worlds or to higher states of awareness. Many keys are omitted in books. Thirdly, books hardly present a two-way interaction that a Guru-Chela relationship offers. From these three points (and there are more) it can be seen how necessary it is to have a Way-Shower. Genuine spiritual/metaphysical teachers are not easily found or met. One meets a real Spiritual Guide partially because of spiritual merit.
There is an occult saying, "When the student is ready the Master appears." The student has to prepare himself for the Master's advent by attaining a certain soul-level, by spiritual works and study. It should be realized, however, that those individuals passing themselves off as Spiritual Gurus and Metaphysical Masters are hardly what they claim themselves to be. Here lies the problem for the occult tyro--how to discern the true Master from the "false prophet," or the wolf in sheep clothing and the true Shepherd of the Spirit. In the traditional teachings of Christianity we are told that St.Peter, one of the Apostles of Christ, guards the portals to the Kingdom of Heaven. He holds within his hands various keys that would unlock the gate and allow the soul to pass the threshold and enter into a world of heavenly delight, to a land where one could pluck and eat the fruits of the Tree of Life. The average Christian interprets this teaching literally. In truth, this is merely an allegory, an esoteric precept referring to the principle that a Spiritual Guru or Murshid, (St.Peter) is necessary to guide one's spiritual development.
The Spiritual Guru holds and preserves the keys of metaphysical (mystical/magickal) development. By applying the keys (the cosmic laws and spiritual principles) that the Guru transmits to his disciples, it would be possible to acquire a spiritual consciousness (the Kingdom of Heaven) and consume the fruits of the Tree of Life (a constant awareness of one's immortality). In the early days of Christianity, "priests" functioned as Gurus and not merely as preachers. In the centuries that followed, the priesthood lost the keys to Heaven because of their corruption and degeneration. They subsequently grew envious of those that did possess the keys, the gnosis or spiritual, esoteric knowledge. This was one of the factors that instigated the attack of the orthodoxy upon the Christian sects called Gnostics. These Gnostics were the custodians of the secret, esoteric, spiritual teachings of the Essenes, the Master Jesus and the other divine avatars. Now it should be realized that not all Spiritual Gurus are of the same evolutionary level. They are of various initiatory grades. Some Gurus offer their services specifically to the masses, to the average person on the street; others are here on the physical plane to help higher-evolved persons, or those of disciple status to attain the first and second planetary initiation.
Rarely do we find Gurus who are real Adepts and Masters guiding those who have heard the call of the soul to attain liberation, enlightenment, and the ascension. Each person who is interested in metaphysical and spiritual culture will find himself at the doorstep of the Guru most appropriate to his present state of soul development. When he grows spiritually to a certain point with the guidance of his Preceptor, he may eventually find himself being led to other Gurus of a higher grade or different ray-ashram for further esoteric instructions or for developing a different soul-quality. Metaphysical Development In the Path of metaphysical development it would be advantageous and worthwhile for the spiritual aspirant to study the spiritual teachings of various religions and philosophies. Anything that would help refine one's soul-character and expand one's metaphysical knowledge is beneficial. The student should be equally comfortable studying the teachings of Alchemy or Zen. By the exploring of various teachings we do not imply that one should build one's spiritual philosophy upon the foundation of syncretism. This would hardly work if we strive to integrate the superficial, dogmatic aspects of religion.
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