ARVINDUS

Secret Wisdom Teaching

The Threads

THE THREADS

Introduction

In the secret wisdom teaching mention is made of certain threads in man. This contemplation has these threads as its subject.

Let us, before taking the specific threads in consideration, have a look at the concept of threads in general first. ‘What is a thread?’ we question ourselves here. Since in the secret wisdom teaching the word ‘thread’ is used interchangeably with the word ‘channel’1, 2 can a thread be understood as such. A thread is a channel. And what it channels is energy or force,3 making a thread also understandable as a line of energy or force.4 Now the secret wisdom teaching does not only make mention of lines of energy or force, but also of centres of energy or force.5 With the threads connecting these centres and transferring energy and force between them can threads thus also be understood as lines of communication or lines of transferrence.6

Here it must be mentioned that symbolically horizontal lines and vertical lines or threads can be depicted. Vertical lines can here be considered as threads connecting centres on different (sub)planes and horizontal lines as threads connecting centres on the same (sub)plane.7 We shall start our more specific consideration of the threads with the vertical ones.

The Vertical Threads

The ‘vertical threads’, as we have named them above, can be best explained by touching upon them in a chronological sketch of human in- and evolution.

The Life Thread
Such a sketch on human in- and evolution starts with the involutionary arc where spirit descends into matter.8 By this descend do the great dualities of spirit and matter unite. This is a cosmological happening which reflects in a human in the descend of the human spirit in the physical body.9 This human spirit, also named ‘monad’, regards the life principle,10 and this life principle unites with the human body in the heart.11 It is this line from the monad to the heart which regards the first vertical thread under consideration. This thread is called the ‘life thread (proper)’ or ‘sutratma (proper)’.12 At this point in our chronological sketch we should not think of the human and the human body as they are now. Actually at this point they are not human at all. The only thing that the descent of spirit in matter has initially enabled is the coming to being of living forms, of life forms.

The Consciousness Thread
Now as has been thematized in an earlier contemplation does the descend of spirit in matter, the union of spirit and matter, bring forth a third given, namely that of consciousness (being the principle of the soul).13 Living beings have some kind of consciousness. This consciousness however is not static. It moves towards a dominance of matter over spirit on the involutionary arc and towards a dominance of spirit over matter on the evolutionary arc.14 Now initially the consciousness of the living beings is not the self-consciousness of a human being. Human consciousness is considered as coherent or coordinated consciousness while that of sub-human beings is considered as incoherend or uncoordinated.15 Sub-human beings thus do not have an individual soul, as do humans, but have a so called ‘group soul’.16 When this group soul has developed the matter of the bodies of the sub-human beings to a certain level of refinement then the group soul individualises and the individual human souls come to being.17 With this individualisation a second thread, the consciousness thread, is anchored from the human soul in the human body, in this case in the head.18

The Creative Thread
The above mentioned individualisation where a human soul comes to being takes place when the lowest level of the soul (higher or abstract mind) unites with the highest level of the personality (lower or concrete mind). This is a microcosmic reflection of the appearance of consciousness in the macrocosmic uniting of spirit with matter.19 And thus shall in humans also a reflected involutionary and evolutionary arc be found. From our chronological perspective can the life thread anchoring in the heart and the consciousness thread anchoring in the head be seen as involutionary because these threads are, so to speak, thrown down from the monad and the soul towards the body and the personality. The situation is however different in case with the creative thread. Man consists of monad, soul and personality, but the personality also consists of a threefold, namely that of the physical together with the etheric, the astral and the mental body.20 Now the creative thread is woven between these three bodies by the personality itself. It is woven between the physical and etheric, the etheric and the astral, and the astral and the mental body.21 This creative thread, when sufficiently constructed, is anchored in the throat.22 From the perspective of the threefold personality this thread may be considered as woven on the evolutionary arc since it is constructed upwards from the physical towards the mental body. However from the perspective of the threefold man consisting of monad, soul and personality the weaving of the creative thread may be seen as a period of equilibrium because no noticeable movement between the three aforementioned principles takes place. The weaving of the creative thread is actually a period of turnaround and of reorientation in which the consciousness moves from being directed towards matter to being directed towards spirit.

The Antahkarana
When the creative thread is woven the personality becomes coordinated or integrated,23, 24 and its attention is then turned upwards, in first instance towards the soul.25 There however a gap must be bridged. On the involutionary arc the soul has bridged the gap with the personality through the consciousness thread, but now the personality itself must bridge it. This thread which is built by the personality and which connects the personality with the soul is technically called the ‘antahkarana’, (or ‘antaskarana’, also known as the ‘rainbow bridge’).26, 27, 28 This bridge is built between the lower or concrete mind of the personality and the higher or abstract mind of the soul,29 and as such is it considered as an extension of the creative thread.30 However it consists not just of this extension. The antahkarana is threefold and the bridge between the lower and higher mind includes the above thematized life thread and consciousness thread.31 These latter however do not go through the egoic lotus, as does the (extension of the) creative thread.32, 33 In going through the egoic lotus the petals of this lotus (knowledge, love and sacrificial)34 are mediating. The antahkarana connects the atmic permanent atom via the sacrificial petals to the physical permanent atom in the egoic lotus, the buddhic permanent atom via de love petals to the astral permanent atom in the egoic lotus and the manasic permanent atom via the knowledge petals to the mental unit in the egoic lotus.35 Note that this part of the antahkarana regards a threefold division of the extension of the creative thread within the egoic lotus. So we have the antahkarana as threefold consisting of the life thread, the consciousness thread and the (extension of the) creative thread, as a sixfold when the creative thread is considered in its triple constitution,36 and again as a sixfold when within the egoic lotus the extension of the creative thread is considered in its threefold.

Now instead of threefold or sixfold is the antahkarana sometimes also considered as dual in nature consisting only of the consciousness and the (extension of the) creative threads, though this is admitted to be a less accurate view.37 In this view may the term ‘antahkarana’ be used synonymously with the term ‘consciousness thread’.38 In this case is consciousness not just considered in its involutionary movement from soul to personality but also in an evolutionary movement from personality to soul.

So far the antahkarana was viewed only as the bridge between the personality and the soul but this bridge regards only half of the antahkarana39 (being called ‘antahkarana proper’), for the term may apply too to the whole bridge between the personality and the monad40 (whereby eventually at the destruction of the egoic lotus or causal body the soul is by-passed and a direct monad-personality relation is established).41, 42

This view on the threads in the case when the causal body is destroyed may then also give an alternate view on the sutratma. In this case the sutratma is not taken synonymously with the life thread but taken as dual, consisting of the life thread and a thread embodying consciousness.43 Perhaps this latter thread may be thought of as an extension of the consciousness thread between the soul infused personality and the monad, like the creative thread of the antahkarana (between personality and soul) was thought of as an extension of the creative thread of the personality. Note that after the destruction of the causal body the personality on the physical plane is fully soul infused, that no distinction between the two should be made,44 and that the monad now works directly through the personality without a mediating soul.45 Because the distinction between soul and personality has fallen away after the destruction of the causal body does the monad not make use of the (extension of the) creative thread.46 So just as the (extension of the) creative thread is fused with the consciousness thread in the course of evolution,47 so shall the (extension of the) consciousness thread probably also be fused with the life thread. And in this case may the sutratma be viewed as consistent of the life thread and the consciousness thread.

Figuration
It may be that for some the elucidation on the vertical threads has become somewhat complex. Therefore the above story shall be given an overview in a concise figure. In figure 1 (at the end of this contemplation) we see boxes, arrows and lines, all with three colors applied. The use of the colors is in line with the way they have been used in the earlier contemplation ‘Secret Wisdom Teaching, Triplicities in Man’.48 The blue represents the monadic givens, the rose the soul givens and the yellow the personality givens. The boxes represent principles (or a pseudo-principle in case of the dense physical body49 or a non-principle in case of the causal body50). The blue box 1 represents the monad, the three rose boxes 2, 3 and 4 represent the three soul principles of atma, buddhi and higher manas and the four yellow boxes 6, 7, 8 and 9 represent the personality principles of the lower manas, the astral and the etheric body, with the lowest of these four representing the pseudo-principle of the physical body. Box 5 represents the causal body, which is not a principle either. This box is colored white because the causal body cannot be solely related to either the soul or the personality. The monad is symbolized by one box, signifying its unity. The personality is symbolized by four separated boxes, signifying its diversity. And the soul is symbolized by three unseparated boxes, signifying its unity in diversity. The different lines or threads are colored in blue, rose or yellow, signifying their eventual cause, being either the monad, the soul or the personality. Every thread (or part of a thread) also has an arrow, signifying whether the regarded thread should be considered as involutionary or evolutionary. The threads are coded with letters from a to o. Some threads have combined colors and the arrows of these threads are combined too. This signifies that an integration or fusion between different threads has taken place.

So what can be read from this figure? Let us with help of this figure illustrate the in the previous subparagraphs sketched lines of involution and evolution in relation to the threads. The first thing we see then is the life thread (proper) (blue lines a-f) running downwards (blue arrows a-f) from the monad (blue box 1) to the physical body (yellow box 9) of the personality (yellow boxes 6-9). This descent of spirit into matter brings the soul principle into being. From the individualised soul (rose boxes 2-4) the consciousness thread (rose lines g-k) too runs downwards (rose arrows g-k) to the physical body. Then the creative thread (yellow lines m-o) is woven upwards (yellow arrows m-o) within the personality (yellow boxes 6-9) itself between the physical body (yellow box 9), the etheric body (yellow box 8), the astral body (yellow box 7) and the (lower) mental body (yellow box 6). Then an extension of thecreative thread (yellow lines g, l) is woven from the lower mental through the causal body (white box 5) upwards  towards the higher mental (rose box 4) of the soul. Thus the first half of the antahkarana (being the antahkarana proper) (blue, rose and yellow lines b-c, g-h, l) is constructed. When the causal body is destroyed or transcended the extension of the creative thread is integrated into the consciousness thread (rose and yellow line and arrow g). The soul fuses with the personality and the first half of the antahkarana falls away. The monad now directly controls the soul infused personality without a mediating soul through the second half of the antahkarana (blue, rose and yellow line and arrow a) which can also be considered as the life thread with the integrated consciousness thread with the integrated creative thread. The depiction of the integrated colors of this line may also add to the understanding of why the antahkarana is also named ‘rainbow bridge’.

Closure
To close off this paragraph on the vertical threads some a remark must be made anent the interpretation of the above, quite analytical, descriptions. In taking notice of these descriptions it must be kept in mind that although the threads are analyzed in their component parts they are forming in reality one whole.51 Also should it not be forgotten that these threads are symbolically contemplated. In reality they are no energy threads but essentially states of awareness.52, 53 With this closure we shall now move on to a consideration of the horizontal threads.

The Horizontal Threads

In the above paragraph were three threads mentioned as being constituent of the antahkarana, namely the life thread or sutratma, the consciousness thread and the creative thread. These threads were in this contemplation mentioned to be vertical, meaning that they connect centres on different (sub)planes. Now these three threads are reflected on the physical plane (which consists of gross and subtle or etheric physical matter),54 and are called ‘ida’, ‘pingala’ and ‘sushumna’.55 Because these threads are connecting centres on the same (sub)plane they are in this contemplation regarded symbolically as horizontal threads. In man they are located in the spinal column.56 So although these threads are placed vertical in man in his spinal column are they symbolically horizontal because they connect centres on the same plane. Here however no reference is made to the gross physical spinal column that is under consideration in regular (medical) sciences but to its esoteric and etheric counterpart.57, 58 The centres they connect then are also located in the etheric body and these regard the seven centres of the secret wisdom teaching.59 These centres are basically  crossing points of energy60 which is transported by the finer channels called ‘nadis’.61 The whole of the etheric body is constituted of these nadis.62 Thus are the three aforementioned threads through the centres which they connect closely related to the distribution of energy through the nadis throughout the etheric body.63

Now above mention was made of the seven (major) centres of the human etheric body, however only five of these are located on the spinal cord,64 for the other two are found in the head. Thus a gap in connectivity is left between the head centre (which is the highest of the two head centres) and the throat centre (which is the highest of the centres on the spine). In course of evolution this gap must be bridged to bring about the perfected human being and the bridging of this gap is a reflection of the bridging of the antahkarana.65 And like the gap that the antahkarana must bridge consists of two gaps (that between the personality and the soul and that between the soul and the monad) so does the gap between the spinal cord and the head centre consist of a gap between the throat centre and the alta major centre and between the alta major centre and the head centre.66

This bridging threefold antahkarana (consisting of the life thread, the consciousness thread and the (extension of the) creative thread) is horizontally, so to speak, reflected as the threefold channel of the ida, the pingala and the sushumna,67 whereby the ida is the positive reflection of the sutratma or life thread, the pingala the negative reflection of the creative thread and the sushumna the equiliberizing reflection of the consciousness thread (in line with the spirit being positive, the personality negative and the soul balancing).68, 69 It can be deduced from the secret wisdom teaching that the equiliberizing of the ida and pingala falls together with the building of the full antahkarana. For like the monad can directly control the personality only when the antahkarana is fully constructed, so is this the case when the ida and pingala are fully balanced. The sushumna (as one single integration of the three channels)70 then becomes the channel in the etheric body through which the three fires of the monad, the soul and the personality can descend and ascend and blend with each other.71, 72 So although from the horizontal perspective the sushumna may be considered as a reflection of the consciousness thread, the ida of the life thread and the pingala of the creative thread, is from the vertical perspective the sushumna the conductor of the monadic energy, the ida of the soul energy and the pingala of the personality force.73 In figure 2 a tabulated overview of this is given. Confusion will arise when the distinction of the horizontal threads as reflections and as conductors is not kept in view.

Being conductors of the monadic and soul energy and personality force are the threads also responsive to three of the major centres, namely that of head, heart and solar plexus. The sushumna is responsive to the head centre.74 The ida can be induced to be responsive to the heart centre (since the ida is the conductor of soul energy and the heart centre is the centre of love and consciousness).75 And the pingala then can be induced to be responsive to the solar plexus centre (since the pingala is the conductor of personality force and the solar plexus centre is the centre of desire and (mediatory in) physical enlivening and creativity.76

All of the above is closely related to the awakening and raising of the kundalini. When the antahkarana is built the ida and pingala are balanced and integrated into the one sushumna channel, and when the twofold gap between the throat and head centre is bridged then can the kundalini be awakened and rise. This subject of the kundalini shall however be left to be treated in another contemplation. Here only mention is made of it because of its close relation with the threads.

Figuration
In figure 3 are the horizontal threads symbolically depicted. We see again boxes, arrows and lines, with the familiar three colors applied. The blue represents the monadic givens, the rose the soul givens and the yellow the personality givens. The seven large boxes represent in this figure the major centres and the small box the minor centre under consideration. The blue box 1 represents the head centre, box 2 the ajna centre, box 3 the (minor) alta major centre, box 4 the throat centre, the rose box 5 the heart centre, the yellow box 6 the solar plexus centre, box 7 the sacral centre and box 8 the centre at the base of the spine.  Note that it is the box representing the solar plexus centre which is colored yellow and not the box representing the centre at the base at the spine. This latter centre has its significance where the rising of the kundalini or the fire of matter is concerned77, 78 but is, according to the information given in the secret wisdom teaching, not the centre to which the pingala as a conductor of personality force is receptive. The different lines or threads are colored in blue, rose or yellow, signifying of what vertical thread they are a reflection. The blue lines are a reflection of the life thread, the rose ones of the consciousness thread and the yellow ones of the creative thread. The arrows on the lines signify for which energy or force the threads are channels. Blue arrows signify the thread being a channel for monadic energy, rose ones for soul energy and yellow ones for personality force. The direction of the arrows shows in which direction the energy and force is considered to be flowing. The threads are coded with letters from a to o. Some threads have combined colors and the arrows of these threads are combined too. This signifies a necessary integration or fusion between different threads.

So what do we see depicted in this figure 3? Let us start with the blue lines d-g. Being blue these lines represent the ida. That rose arrows are depicted on them shows that the ida is the conductor of soul energy. The yellow lines l-o represent the pingala. Having yellow arrows it is shown as the conductor of personality force. And the rose lines h-k then represent the sushumna. Having blue arrows it is shown to be the conductor of monadic energy. That these three lines are depicted seperate from each other means that they are not necessarily equilibriumized and integrated. All these lines are further depicted between box 8 and 4, showing that these not necessary integrated threads run between the centre at the base of the spine and the throat centre. Between the throat centre (box 4) and the (minor) alta major centre (box 3) is line c drawn in the three colors. This line represents the first half of the sushumna bridge with ida and pingala necessarily balanced and integrated. This necessary integration is also shown in the blue arrow containing the rose and yellow arrows. The lines a-b between the alta major centre (box 3) and the head centre (box 1) then represent the second half of the sushumna bridge with ida and pingala necessarily balanced and integrated. These lines have the same arrows as line c. The totality of lines a-o represents the whole sushumna channel when it is balanced and integrated. All lines and arrows are included.

Summary

This contemplation was started with the mentioning of threads as connectors of centres. Those connecting centres on different (sub)planes were called ‘vertical’ and those connecting centres on the same (sub)plane were called ‘horizontal’. In the first paragraph the vertical threads were mentioned to consist of the sutratma or life thread (centred in the heart), the consciousness thread (centred in the head) and the creative thread (centred in the throat). This creative thread in course of human evolution is extended from the lower mental plane of the personality towards the higher mental plane of the soul. And this extension taken together with the consciousness thread and the life thread between the lower mental and the monad (integrated or not) was called the ‘antahkarana’.

In the second paragraph were the horizontal threads considered as being placed in the etheric body where the sushumna, the ida and the pingala are reflections of the consciousness thread, the life thread and the creative thread (in that order). As conductors however they conduct the energy and force of the monad, the soul and the personality (in that order). For the monadic energy to be conducted however the ida and pingala have to be balanced and integrated into the one sushumna (the latter then being held as a horizontal reflection of the vertical antahkarana) by which also the twofold gap between the throat centre and the head centre (with the minor alta major centre being intermediary) is bridged. The kundalini can then safely be awakened and rise. Figure 3 gave an overview.

May the gaps within ourselves thus be bridged.

Notes
  1. Alice A. Bailey, 'Esoteric Healing, A Treatise on the Seven Rays, Volume IV’, in: Twenty-Four Books of Esoteric Philosophy, (CD-ROM, Release 3), Lucis Trust, London / New York, 2001, Part Three, Ch. VIII, Law VII. “3. The nadis, that system of slightly denser etheric channels or tiny threads of force […].”
  2. Alice A. Bailey, 'Esoteric Psychology, Volume II, A Treatise on the Seven Rays, Volume II’, in: Twenty-Four Books of Esoteric Philosophy, (CD-ROM, Release 3), Lucis Trust, London / New York, 2001, Ch. I, II, 4. “[…] unless there is a thread of light to act as a channel, […]”
  3. ‘Esoteric Healing’, Part Three, Ch. VIII, Law VII. “[…] the line of force or the channel […].”
  4. Alice A. Bailey, 'Telepathy and the Etheric Vehicle’, in: Twenty-Four Books of Esoteric Philosophy, (CD-ROM, Release 3), Lucis Trust, London / New York, 2001, Section Two, II. “[…] many lesser channels and lines of force or energy […].”
  5. Alice A. Bailey, 'A Treatise on Cosmic Fire’, in: Twenty-Four Books of Esoteric Philosophy, (CD-ROM, Release 3), Lucis Trust, London / New York, 2001, Section Two, Division C. “1. Wheels or centres of energy.
    a. Centres of force.”
  6. ‘Esoteric Psychology, Volume II, Ch. I, I, 2. “[…]the main channel or line of communication […].”
  7. See also: ‘Secret Wisdom Teaching, Man on the Planes’, Index: 201212031.
  8. Alice A. Bailey, ‘A Treatise on Cosmic Fire’, in: Twenty-Four Books of Esoteric Philosophy, (CD-ROM, Release 3), Lucis Trust, London / New York, 2001, Section Two, Division E, I. “a. The activity which produces involution, or the submergence in matter of Life or Spirit.”
  9. See also: ‘Secret Wisdom Teaching, Triplicities in Man’, Index: 201308292.
  10. Ibidem.
  11. Alice A. Bailey, 'Education in the New Age’, in: Twenty-Four Books of Esoteric Philosophy, (CD-ROM, Release 3), Lucis Trust, London / New York, 2001, Ch. V. “a. The life thread comes directly from the monad or the ONE.  This thread is anchored in the heart during incarnation.  There is the seat of life.
  12. Alice A. Bailey, 'The Rays and the Initiations, A Treatise on the Seven Rays, Volume V’, in: Twenty-Four Books of Esoteric Philosophy, (CD-ROM, Release 3), Lucis Trust, London / New York, 2001, Part Two, Section One, The Science of the Antahkarana, The Technique of Construction. “a. Sutratma, the life thread.”
  13. See note 9.
  14. ‘A Treatise on Cosmic Fire’, Section Two, Introductory Questions, VII. “a. The period of the domination of the form note is that of involution. […].
    d. The period of domination of the note of Spirit is that of the higher planes of evolution.”
  15. See note 7.
  16. ‘A Treatise on Cosmic Fire’, Section Two, Division E, VI, 2. “It is useful to remember that in the three lower kingdoms, manifestation, or appearance on the physical plane, is ever group manifestation and not the appearance of separated units.  Each group soul, as it is called, is divided into seven parts which appear in each of the seven races of a world period, and there is an interesting distinction between them and the units of the human kingdom.”
  17. ‘Secret Wisdom Teaching, The Egoic Lotus’, Index: 201305241, The Egoic Lotus as Cause of Individuality.
  18. ‘Education in the New Age’, Ch. V. “b. The consciousness thread comes directly from the soul.  It is anchored in the head.  There is the seat of consciousness.”
  19. Alice A. Bailey, 'Esoteric Psychology, Volume I, A Treatise on the Seven Rays, Volume II’, in: Twenty-Four Books of Esoteric Philosophy, (CD-ROM, Release 3), Lucis Trust, London / New York, 2001, Section One, Ch. II, Question 1. “1. The lower concrete mind, the mental body, the "chitta" or mind stuff.
    2. The higher spiritual or abstract mind.
    […]. The other, the higher aspect, is the principle of self-awareness, and when combined with the lower aspect produces the self-consciousness of the human being.  When the lower aspect has informed and pervaded the forms in the subhuman kingdoms, and when it has worked upon those forms and their latent sentiency so as to produce adequate refinement and sentiency, the vibration becomes so potent that the higher is attracted and there is a fusion or at-one-ing.  This is like a higher recapitulation of the initial union of spirit and matter which brought the world into being.  A human soul is thus brought into existence and begins its long career.  It is now a differentiated entity.”
  20. See note 9.
  21. ‘Education in the New Age, Ch. V. “The creative thread itself is triple in nature.  It is slowly constructed down the ages by the man.  As he becomes truly alive, from the standpoint of intelligent awareness and the desire fully to express himself, the process is materially hastened. These three self-created lesser threads which constitute the third thread of the antahkarana extend eventually:
    1. From the physical body to the etheric body, passing from the heart to the spleen, and thence to the body of prana, the vital or etheric body, unites with force from the egoic will petals.
    2. From the etheric body to the astral body.  This thread passes from the solar plexus to the heart and from thence to the astral body, picking up the energy of the thread mentioned above, unites with force the love petals.
    3. From the astral body to the mental vehicle.  This thread passes from the ajna centre to the head centre and from thence to the mind body, picking up the energy of the other two threads mentioned above, unites with the force from the knowledge petals.”
  22. Ibidem, Ch. V. “c. The thread of creative activity is initiated and constructed by the human being.  It is anchored, when sufficiently constructed, in the throat.  This thread is an extension or synthesis of the two basic threads.”
  23. ‘Esoteric Psychology, Volume II’, Ch. II, 3, Introduction. “Past Integrations.
    Between the animal body and the vital body.
    Between these two and the sensitive desire nature.
    Between these three and the lower concrete mind.
    Present Integrations.
    Between these four aspects thus producing a coordinated personality.
    Future Integration.
    Between the personality and the Soul.”
  24. Ibidem, Ch. II, Introduction. “2. Personalities who are integrated, coordinated men and women, but who are not yet under the influence of the soul.”
  25. See note 23.
  26. Ibidem, Ch. I, II, 3. “2. The science of Antaskarana, or the science of the bridging which must take place between higher and lower mind.”
  27. ‘The Rays and the Initiations’, Part Two, Section One, The Science of the Antahkarana, The Bridge between the three Aspects of the Mind.  “But the consciousness thread extends only from soul to personality—from the involutionary sense.  From the evolutionary angle (using a paradoxical phrase) there is only a very little conscious awareness existing between the soul and the personality, from the standpoint of the personality upon the evolutionary arc of the Path of Return.  A man's whole effort is to become aware of the soul and to transmute his consciousness into that of the soul, whilst still preserving the consciousness of the personality.  As the fusion of soul and personality is strengthened, the creative thread becomes increasingly active, and thus the three threads steadily fuse, blend, become dominant, and the aspirant is then ready to bridge the gap and unite the Spiritual Triad and the personality, through the medium of the soul.  This involves a direct effort at divine creative work.  The clue to understanding lies perhaps in the thought that hitherto the relation between soul and personality has been steadily carried forward, primarily by the soul, as it stimulated the personality to effort, vision and expansion.  Now—at this stage—the integrated, rapidly developing personality becomes consciously active, and (in unison with the soul) starts building the antahkarana—a fusion of the three threads and a projection of them into the "higher wider reaches" of the mental plane, until the abstract mind and the lower concrete mind are related by the triple cable.”
  28. Ibidem, Part One, Rule One. “This involves the construction of what is technically the antahkarana, the rainbow bridge.”
  29. Alice A. Bailey, 'Letters on Occult Meditation’, in: Twenty-Four Books of Esoteric Philosophy, (CD-ROM, Release 3), Lucis Trust, London / New York, 2001, Glossary. “Antahkarana.  The path, or bridge, between higher and lower mind, serving as a medium of communication between the two.  It is built by the aspirant himself in mental matter.”
  30. ‘The Rays and the Initiations’, Part Two, Section One, The Science of the Antahkarana, The Nature of the Antahkarana. “These three major threads which are in reality six, if the creative thread is differentiated into its component parts, form the antahkarana.  They embody past and present experience and are so recognised by the aspirant.  It is only upon the Path itself that the phrase "building the antahkarana" becomes accurate and appropriate.  It is in this connection that confusion is apt to arise in the mind of the student.  He forgets that it is a purely arbitrary distinction of the lower analysing mind to call this stream of energy the sutratma, and another stream of energy the consciousness thread and a third stream of energy the creative thread.  They are essentially, all three of them together, the antahkarana in process of forming.  It is equally arbitrary to call the bridge which the disciple builds from the lower mental plane—via the egoic, central vortex of force—the antahkarana.  But for purposes of comprehending study and practical experience, we will define the antahkarana as the extension of the threefold thread (hitherto woven unconsciously, through life experimentation and the response of consciousness to environment) through the process of projecting consciously the triple blended energies of the personality as they are impulsed by the soul, across a gap in consciousness which has hitherto existed.”
  31. Ibidem.
  32. See also: ‘Secret Wisdom Teaching, The Egoic Lotus’.
  33. ‘The Rays and the Initiations’, Part Two, Section One, The Science of the Antahkarana, The Bridge as the Agent of Alignment. “Only one thread of the threefold antahkarana passes through the egoic lotus. The other two threads relate themselves directly with the Triad, and hence eventually with the Monad, the source of the triadal life.”
  34. See note 31.
  35. Alice A. Bailey, 'Discipleship in the New Age, Volume I’, in: Twenty-Four Books of Esoteric Philosophy, (CD-ROM, Release 3), Lucis Trust, London / New York, 2001, Section Three, Discipleship and Its End, Part VIII. "I. The Spiritual Triad, the custodian of monadic energy.
    The atmic permanent atom.
    The sacrifice petals.
    The antahkarana.
    The physical permanent atom within the egoic lotus.
    The head centre.
    II. The Spiritual Triad.
    The buddhic permanent atom.
    The love petals.
    The antahkarana.
    The astral permanent atom within the egoic lotus.
    The heart centre.
    III. The Spiritual Triad.
    The manasic permanent atom.
    The knowledge petals.
    The antahkarana.
    The mental unit.
    The throat centre."
  36. See note 30.
  37. ‘The Rays and the Initiations’, Part Two, Section One, The Science of the Antahkarana, The Nature of the Antahkarana. “Knowledge-force concerns the personality and the world of material values; wisdom-energy expresses itself through the consciousness thread and the creative thread, as they constitute in themselves a woven dual strand.  They are (for the disciple) a fusion of the past (consciousness thread) and the present (the creative thread), and together they form what is usually called, upon the Path of Return, the Antahkarana. This is not entirely accurate.”
  38. ‘Education in the New Age’, Ch. I, Theory, Methods and Goals. “Students should train themselves to distinguish between the sutratma and the antahkarana, between the life thread and the thread of consciousness.  One thread is the basis of immortality and the other the basis of continuity.  Herein lies a fine distinction for the investigator.  One thread (the sutratma) links and vivifies all forms into one functioning whole and embodies in itself the will and the purpose of the expressing entity, be it man, God or a crystal.  The other thread (the antahkarana) embodies the response of the consciousness within the form to a steadily expanding range of contacts within the environing whole.”
  39. ‘Education in the New Age’, Ch. III, The Aquarian Age. “b. Build the first half of the antahkarana, that between the personality and the soul.”
  40. ‘The Rays and the Initiations’, Part Two, Section One, The Science of the Antahkarana, The Nature of the Antahkarana. “Technically, and upon the Path of Discipleship, this bridge between the personality in its three aspects and the monad and its three aspects is called the antahkarana.”
  41. ‘Esoteric Healing’, Part Two, Ch. VII, The Elimination of the Personality Thoughtform. “Second.  The soul then prepares itself for the coming fourth initiation.  This is basically a monadic experience and results—as you know—in the disappearance or destruction of the soul vehicle or causal body, and the establishment, therefore, of a direct relation between the monad on its own plane and the newly created personality, via the antahkarana.”
  42. Ibidem, Part One, Rule Eleven. “Later, as the disciple builds the antahkarana and thus establishes a direct channel of communication between the Monad and the personality, the lower mind becomes fused with the abstract mind or higher mind (the manasic principle, sublimated and purified), and gradually the soul is—to use a peculiar but sensitively expressing word—by-passed. […].Triplicity, from the angle of the three periodical vehicles—Monad, soul and personality—is resolved into duality, and the Monad (reflected in the Triad) can now work upon the lower planes through the medium of a definitely created personality or "point of tension" in the three worlds.  It is to this that the rule applies when studied in terms of the individual initiate, whilst the life in which the soul is "by-passed" and its ring-pass-not is destroyed, is of such profound difficulty that it is called the life of crucifixion or of renunciation.”
  43. Ibidem, Part Two, Section One, The Science of the Antahkarana, Building the Antahkarana. “The life thread, the silver cord or the sutratma is, as far as man is concerned, dual in nature.  The life thread proper, which is one of the two threads which constitute the sutratma, is anchored in the heart, whilst the other thread, which embodies the principle of consciousness, is anchored in the head.”
  44. Ibidem, Part Two, Section One, The Science of the Antahkarana, The Bridge between the three Aspects of Mind. “The personality has by this time completely absorbed the soul, or to put it perhaps more accurately, both soul and personality have been fused and blended into one instrument for the use of the One Life.”
  45. ‘The Rays and the Initiations’, Part Two, Section One, The Science of the Antahkarana, The Technique of Construction. “Students would do well to learn that this process of building the antahkarana is one of the means whereby man, the trinity, becomes a duality.  When the task is completed and the antahkarana is definitely built—thus producing perfect alignment between the Monad and its expression upon the physical plane—the body of the soul (the causal body) is completely and finally destroyed by the fire of the Monad, pouring down the antahkarana.  There is then complete reciprocity between the Monad and the fully conscious soul on the physical plane.  The "divine intermediary" is no longer required. […].This is the final and far-reaching result of the building of the bridge which is, in reality, the establishing of a line of light between Monad and personality as a full expression of the soul—between spirit and matter, between Father and Mother.”
  46. ‘Esoteric Healing’, Part One, Ch. I, 4, B, The Seven Major Centres. “3. The Throat Centre. […]. It is not related to any of the divine aspects by the antahkarana because that thread which links monad and personality directly (and finally independently of the soul) simply anchors the monadic expression of life in the head, at the head centre.”
  47. ‘The Rays and the Initiations’, Part Two, Section One, The Science of the Antahkarana, The Technique of Construction. “2. These two threads are, for the disciple, a fusion of past knowledge (the consciousness thread) and the present (the creative thread).”
  48. See note 9.
  49. ‘Esoteric Healing’, Part Three, Ch. VIII, Law VI. “To sum up:  the physical body is not a principle; […].”
  50. See note 32.
  51. See note 30.
  52. Alice A. Bailey, 'Discipleship in the New Age, Volume II’, in: Twenty-Four Books of Esoteric Philosophy, (CD-ROM, Release 3), Lucis Trust, London / New York, 2001, Section Two, Part XI. ‘“The symbology of the antahkarana tends badly to complicate the grasp of its real nature. May I remind you that, just as the soul is not a twelve-petalled lotus floating around in mental substance, but is in reality a vortex of force or twelve energies held together by the will of the spiritual entity (the Monad on its own plane), so the antahkarana is not a series of energy threads, slowly woven by the soul-infused personality, and met by corresponding threads projected by the Spiritual Triad, but is in reality a state of awareness.“
  53. ‘The Rays and the Initiations’, Part Two, Section One, The Science of the Antahkarana, The Bridge as the Agent of Alignment. “Students would do well to consider the building of the antahkarana as an extension in consciousness.”
  54. See note 7.
  55. ‘Esoteric Healing’, Part One, Ch. I, 4, B, The Seven Major Centres – (Continued). “6. The spinal column (from the angle of the esoteric sciences) houses a threefold thread.  This is the externalisation of the antahkarana, composed of the antahkarana proper, the sutratma or life thread, and the creative thread.  This threefold thread within the spinal column is therefore composed of three threads of energy which have channeled for themselves in the substance of the interior of the column a "threefold way of approach and of withdrawal."  These are called in the Hindu terminology:  the ida, the pingala and the sushumna paths, and they together form the path of life for the individual man and are awakened into activity sequentially and according to ray type and the point of evolution.”
  56. See note 54.
  57. ‘A Treatise on Cosmic Fire’, Section One, Division D. “We must remember here that we are dealing with the etheric counterpart of the spine, and not with the bony structure which we call the spine or spinal column.  This is a fact not sufficiently recognised by those who treat of the matter.  Too much emphasis has been laid on the three spinal channels that compose the threefold spinal cord.”
  58. ‘Esoteric Healing’, Part One, Ch. I, 4, B, Effects Produced in Specific Areas. “The spinal column (esoterically, the ida, pingala and sushumna channels), […].”
  59. 'Telepathy and the Etheric Vehicle’, Section Two, I. “It must always be remembered that the seven centres are not within the dense physical body. They exist only in etheric matter and in the etheric so-called aura, outside the physical body.”
  60. ‘Esoteric Healing’, Part One, Ch. I, 2. “The etheric body is a body composed entirely of lines of force and of points where these lines of force cross each other and thus form (in crossing) centres of energy.  Where many such lines of force cross each other, you have a larger centre of energy, and where great streams of energy meet and cross, as they do in the head and up the spine, you have seven major centres.”
  61. 'Telepathy and the Etheric Vehicle’, Section Two, I. “Within the physical body, the network of the etheric body is to be found permeating every single part. It is peculiarly associated at this time with the nervous system, which is fed, nourished, controlled and galvanised by its etheric counterpart. This counterpart is present in millions of tiny streams or lines of energy, to which the Eastern occultist has given the name "nadis." These nadis are the carriers of energy.”
  62. See note 60.
  63. ‘Esoteric Psychology, Volume II’, Ch. II, 4, b. “Simultaneously with this appearance of duality in the "nadis", the disciple finds himself able to use the two channels—ida and pingala—which are found up the spinal column, one on each side of the central channel.  There can now be the free flow of force up and down these two "pathways of the forces" and thus out into the "nadis", utilising the area around any of the major centres as distributing areas and thus galvanising, at will, any part of the mechanism into activity, or the whole mechanism into coordinated action.  The disciple has now reached the point in his development where the etheric web, which separates all the centres up the spine from each other, has been burned away by the fires of life.  The "sushumna" or central channel can be slowly utilised.  This parallels the period wherein there is the free flow of soul force through the central channel in the "nadis".  Eventually this central channel comes into full activity.”
  64. Alice A. Bailey, 'The Light of the Soul’, in: Twenty-Four Books of Esoteric Philosophy, (CD-ROM, Release 3), Lucis Trust, London / New York, 2001, Book II. “3. Correct use and development of the five centres up the spine (base of spine, sacral centre, solar plexus, heart and throat centres), each of which is found in the etheric body […].”
  65. ‘A Treatise on Cosmic Fire, Section Two, Division E, VI, 4. “Between the triple energy of the spinal column and the alta major centre, there is a hiatus, just as there exists that which must be bridged between the triple lower man and the egoic body, or between the mental unit on the fourth subplane of the mental plane and the solar Angel on the third subplane.  Though we are told that the permanent atomic triad is enclosed in the causal periphery, nevertheless, from the standpoint of consciousness there is that which must be bridged.  Again, between the alta major centre and the supreme head centre, exists another gulf—a correspondence to the gulf found between the plane of the Ego and the lowest point of the Triad, the manasic permanent atom.”
  66. Ibidem.
  67. ‘Esoteric Healing’, Part One, Ch. I, 4, B, The Seven Major Centres-(Continued). “6. The spinal column (from the angle of the esoteric sciences) houses a threefold thread.  This is the externalisation of the antahkarana, composed of the antahkarana proper, the sutratma or life thread, and the creative thread.  This threefold thread within the spinal column is therefore composed of three threads of energy which have channeled for themselves in the substance of the interior of the column a "threefold way of approach and of withdrawal."  These are called in the Hindu terminology:  the ida, the pingala and the sushumna paths, and they together form the path of life for the individual man and are awakened into activity sequentially and according to ray type and the point of evolution.  The sushumna path is not used correctly and safely until the antahkarana has been built and the Monad and Personality are thereby related, even if it is only by the most tenuous thread.  Then the Monad, the Father, the will aspect, can reach the personality in a direct manner, and can arouse the basic centre, and with it blend, unify and raise the three fires.”
  68. Alice A. Bailey, 'A Treatise on White Magic’, in: Twenty-Four Books of Esoteric Philosophy, (CD-ROM, Release 3), Lucis Trust, London / New York, 2001, Rule Three, Soul Light and Body Light. “The ancient yoga of Atlantean days (which has come down to us in the necessarily fragmentary teaching of the yoga of the centres) conveys to us the information that the reflection of the sutratma in the human organism is called the spinal cord, and expresses itself in three nerve channels.  These three are called ida, pingala, and the central channel, the sushumna.  When the negative and positive forces of the body, which express themselves via the ida and pingala nerve routes, are equilibrized, the forces can ascend and descend by the central channel to and from the brain, passing through the centres up the spine without hindrance.  When this is the case we have perfected soul expression in the physical man.
    This is in reality a correspondence to the sutratma as it links the physical man and the soul, for the sutratma in its turn expresses the positive energy of spirit, the negative energy of matter, and the equilibrized energy of the soul—the attainment of equilibrium being the present objective of humanity.  During the period of the later initiations, the positive use of the spiritual energy supersedes the equilibrized use of soul force, but that is a later stage with which the aspirant need not as yet trouble himself.”
  69. ‘Discipleship in the New Age, Volume II’, Section Four.
      Spirit Positive
    "I. Soul Balancing
      Personality Negative"
  70. ‘A Treatise on Cosmic Fire’, Section One, Division D, II. “When this is accomplished the threefold channel becomes one channel.”
  71. See note 67, 68.
  72. ‘Esoteric Healing’, Part One, Ch. I, 4, B, The Seven Major Centres. “I do not indicate which channel is responsive to which centre, except in the case of the sushumna channel which is responsive only to the energy of the head centre and the directing will, centred in the 1000-petalled lotus.”
  73. Ibidem. "
    Note 73 "
  74. See note 72.
  75. ‘Esoteric Healing’, Part One, Ch. I, 4, B, The Seven Major Centres. “The three channels up the spine are responsive in their totality to the three major centres:
    a. To the solar plexus centre, providing thus the impulse of desire and feeding the physical life and the creative urge.
    b. To the heart centre, providing the impulse to love and to conscious contact with ever widening areas of divine expression.
    c. To the head centre, providing the dynamic impulse of the will to live.”
  76. Ibidem.
  77. ‘A Treatise on Cosmic Fire’, Section One, Division E, V, 3. “a. Kundalini lies at the base of the spine, […].”
  78. Ibidem. “Kundalini is likewise the fire or force of matter, […].”
Bibliography
  • ‘Secret Wisdom Teaching, Man on the Planes’, Index: 201212031.
  • Secret Wisdom Teaching, The Egoic Lotus, Index: 201305241.
  • ‘Secret Wisdom Teaching, Triplicities in Man’, Index: 201308292.
  • Alice A. Bailey, 'A Treatise on Cosmic Fire’, in: Twenty-Four Books of Esoteric Philosophy, (CD-ROM, Release 3), Lucis Trust, London / New York, 2001.
  • Alice A. Bailey, 'A Treatise on White Magic’, in: Twenty-Four Books of Esoteric Philosophy, (CD-ROM, Release 3), Lucis Trust, London / New York, 2001.
  • Alice A. Bailey, 'Discipleship in the New Age, Volume I’, in: Twenty-Four Books of Esoteric Philosophy, (CD-ROM, Release 3), Lucis Trust, London / New York, 2001.
  • Alice A. Bailey, 'Discipleship in the New Age, Volume II’, in: Twenty-Four Books of Esoteric Philosophy, (CD-ROM, Release 3), Lucis Trust, London / New York, 2001.
  • Alice A. Bailey, 'Education in the New Age’, in: Twenty-Four Books of Esoteric Philosophy, (CD-ROM, Release 3), Lucis Trust, London / New York, 2001.
  • Alice A. Bailey, 'Esoteric Healing, A Treatise on the Seven Rays, Volume IV’, in: Twenty-Four Books of Esoteric Philosophy, (CD-ROM, Release 3), Lucis Trust, London / New York, 2001.
  • Alice A. Bailey, 'Esoteric Psychology, Volume I, A Treatise on the Seven Rays, Volume I’, in: Twenty-Four Books of Esoteric Philosophy, (CD-ROM, Release 3), Lucis Trust, London / New York, 2001.
  • Alice A. Bailey, 'Esoteric Psychology, Volume II, A Treatise on the Seven Rays, Volume II’, in: Twenty-Four Books of Esoteric Philosophy, (CD-ROM, Release 3), Lucis Trust, London / New York, 2001.
  • Alice A. Bailey, 'Letters on Occult Meditation’, in: Twenty-Four Books of Esoteric Philosophy, (CD-ROM, Release 3), Lucis Trust, London / New York, 2001.
  • Alice A. Bailey, 'Telepathy and the Etheric Vehicle’, in: Twenty-Four Books of Esoteric Philosophy, (CD-ROM, Release 3), Lucis Trust, London / New York, 2001.
  • Alice A. Bailey, 'The Light of the Soul’, in: Twenty-Four Books of Esoteric Philosophy, (CD-ROM, Release 3), Lucis Trust, London / New York, 2001.
  • Alice A. Bailey, 'The Rays and the Initiations, A Treatise on the Seven Rays, Volume V’, in: Twenty-Four Books of Esoteric Philosophy, (CD-ROM, Release 3), Lucis Trust, London / New York, 2001.
Figures
  • Figure 1: The Vertical Threads.
  • Figure 2: The Vertical Threads and their Horizontal Reflections and Conductors.
  • Figure 3: The Horizontal Threads.
The Vertical Threads
The Vertical Threads

1: Monad.
2: Atma.
3: Buddhi.
4: Higher manas.
2-4: Soul.
5: Causal body.
6: Lower manas.
7: Astral body.
8: Etheric body.
9: Physical body.
6-9: Personality.

a-f: Life thread (proper).
g-k: Consciousness thread.
m-o: Creative thread.
l: Extension of creative thread.
b-c, g-h, l: Antahkarana (first half), (proper).
g: Consciousness thread with integrated
(extension of) creative thread.
a: Life thread with integrated (extension of)
consciousness thread with integrated (extension of)
creative thread.
a-c, g-h, l: Antahkarana.

Figure 1.
The Vertical Threads and their Horizontal Reflections and Conductors
Principle Monad Soul Personality
Vertical thread Life thread or sutratma Consciousness thread (Extension of) creative thread
Horizontal thread as reflection Ida Sushumna Pingala
Horizontal thread as conductor Sushumna Ida Pingala

Figure 2.
The Horizontal Threads
The Horizontal Threads

1: Head centre.
2: Ajna centre.
3: Alta major centre.
4: Throat centre.
5: Heart centre.
6: Solar plexus centre.
7: Sacral centre.
8. Centre at the base of the spine.

d-g: Ida.
h-k: Sushumna (proper).
l-o: Pingala.
a-o: Sushumna with ida and pingala
integrated.
a-c: Sushumna bridge with ida and
pingala necessarily integrated.
c: First half of sushumna bridge with
ida and pingala necessarily integrated.
a-b: Second half of sushumna bridge
with ida and pingala necessarily integrated.

Figure 3.