Some Thoughts on Leo – The Self within the Whole

The purpose of this solar system, the writings of Alice Bailey tell us, is the unfoldment of consciousness. In the progression of cosmic energies that flow throughout the zodiac, the mass consciousness of Cancer must become transformed into self-consciousness in Leo, prior to the awakening realization of group consciousness in Aquarius. In this process, the intense self-awareness of Leo is vital to the development of sensitivity. At first thought, we might associate sensitivity with an over-active emotional nature, but true spiritual sensitivity is on a higher level. It fosters the capacity to respond to the environment, the larger whole in which the unit—the separated self—exists. Thus Leo is said to be of paramount control in the life of the aspirant, for the self must be known before the divine Spirit, the true Self, and its presence in one’s fellow men, can be recognized.

For some mysterious purpose (in our present understanding), self-knowledge must be gained through the experience of life in form: manifestation in earthly existence. Through form life the seeker gains contact with the myriad lives progressing through the many levels of evolution, and this process develops self-awareness and self-mastery. Equally important, in time the experience of life in form generates a demand to achieve liberation from that form in order to acquire one more adequate for the expression of the indwelling life, while retaining the sensitivity and expanded consciousness achieved through that form. This progressively expanding sense of identification is the keynote for Leo: I am That and That am I. From the separated personality’s assertion, I am, to the seeker’s growing realization of a shared humanity and, beyond that, to an identification with an enfolding Whole which expresses as I am That, consciousness unfolds.

Nothing hastens this awakening more than the experience of pain and limitation. An insight into this inevitability is given in Alice Bailey’s writings on “the Principle of Limitation”. The existence of life in form is bound by this principle, to which all manifested lives submit and from which they must liberate themselves in order to evolve. Each environment, every field of awareness, becomes in time a prison from which the indwelling consciousness must seek liberation in order to expand its field of contacts. Wherever there is a sense of worlds to conquer, of unknown realms awaiting discovery, the sense of limitation acts as a festering, compelling force, Alice Bailey wrote. The whole thrust of evolution is governed by the sense of limitation and its outcome, pain. At the human stage, this experience of pain becomes uniquely acute because of the human capacity for memory and foreboding.

The combination of pain, rebellion, and the conscious urge towards better conditions is only found where individuality is present—where the declaration I am resounds. This demand of the separated self cannot be satiated except through the development of group consciousness—of belonging to a larger whole. The atomic stage of human consciousness must be left behind so that recognition of humanity’s place and responsibility in a greater Whole can be registered by the awakening human mind. Much of what is visible in the world’s crisis can be traced to this need to awaken and the long, slow process it requires.

Gazing at the night sky, particularly if we’re able to witness the Perseid meteor showers which occur during Leo each year, we’re reminded that the Cosmos is our true home. We exist within a vast Life to which we are slowly awakening. It’s said that “God is an infinite sphere, whose center is everywhere and whose circumference is nowhere.” This casts light on the significance of the self: I am That and That am I. Looking at the night sky, we can feel diminished by our apparent insignificance, or we can recognize the Cosmos as the expression of a great Whole in which we live and move and have our being. To even begin to grasp this profound realization, it can help to remember that “Humility must always accompany a spiritual self-respect which forbids a disciple to stand anywhere upon the Path, except in his rightful place.” Those words of Alice Bailey express the lessons and the achievement of the Leo experience.



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