To See Divinity on Every Hand in Every Form

It’s a widely held assumption that organized religion has lost its traditional hold on humanity, leading many to conclude that present generations are less spiritually inclined, more materialistic and even “godless” than previous generations. Particularly among the intelligentsia—the well educated, usually urban-dwelling populace—it’s quite acceptable to decry religious belief and even to view believers as naïve or, worse, gullible and stupid. Is this view really fair, and if there is a shred of truth in it, does religion still have a part to play in the development of human consciousness?

The religious approach of the past two thousand year cycle was characterised by the quest for an abstract, visionary ideal, for God Transcendent. This development lifted the human vision to a more intuitive concept of the divine, but over time it has also contributed to the separation of science and religion, a cleavage that now demands to be bridged in order to quench humanity’s spiritual thirst. If the traditional religions no longer wield the same authority as in earlier times, perhaps it’s not that people have turned away from God, but that they are responding to the impact of the inflowing energies of the seventh Ray of Order and Organisation. This powerful spiritual energy fosters the fusion of spirit and matter, bringing about the synthesis of life and form. Today, the thrust of this inpouring energy may be the compelling factor leading spiritual seekers to search for a meaningful recognition of God Immanent—of God within the form, the veiled and hidden supreme Reality which underlies all existence. In this search we’re reminded that “There is no need for too great an upward straining or too intense an outward looking, to use terms which the usual limited point of view can grasp. That which is to be revealed lies all around us, and within us. It is the significance of all that is embodied in form, the meaning behind the appearance”, Alice Bailey wrote.

An esoteric mantram suitable for the present time declares, “I see divinity on every hand in every form.” Instead of viewing the outer world as being in conflict with spirituality, modern religion now has to offer a means to experience divinity within the world—manifest not only in the kingdoms of nature but also in the awesome discoveries of science and the glorious achievements of the arts. In all of these fields and more, the divine presence—which we call God Immanent—is being made visible. This perspective sheds light on the esoteric teaching that religion is the culture of the sense of divinity. This implies that a vision of religion for the coming age must foster the development of spiritual recognition—the capacity to recognise the underlying spiritual purpose seeking expression through all forms, within all manifestation.

With this perspective, a space is created for complexity and diversity. As interfaith and cross-cultural contacts have increased over the past century, it has become clear that the one-pointed, devoted but sometimes fanatical, approach of religion in the past age no longer suffices for everyone. In fact, esoteric teaching confirms that diversity is an essential quality throughout nature; the differentiation so resplendent throughout the natural world contains within it a synthesis, a unified purpose, which, we’re told, is the outstanding and major characteristic of divinity: diversity and synthesis, mutual reinforcements in the unfoldment of an underlying spiritual purpose. In this process each kingdom—mineral, vegetable, animal, and human—plays an intrinsic part; for, in fact, the human mechanism contains within itself all these elements as well as an awakening soul.

Imagine the repercussions of this realisation—that within every human being the soul abides, in some cases deeply hidden but awaiting opportunity to emerge. How will it transform humanity’s approach to relations between nations and races, to the minorities in all societies, to the disabled, to those within prisons and mental institutions, to “the least of these my brethren”? What will be its impact on such fields as economics, psychology, and education? The human species is charged with an activist role which, in past ages, fostered a sense of dominion or mastery but which now is gradually expressing as reverence and responsibility—for the Earth and all the lives that share it with us, and for our fellow human beings in their struggle towards the Light.

The growth of human intelligence made possible by universal education means that a rigid acceptance of the rules, rites and beliefs of traditional religion is no longer needed by everyone or, to many, acceptable. “A new type of mystic is coming to be recognised”, we’re told. These individuals differ from the mystics of the past by their practical interest in current world affairs and not in religious and church matters only; they are distinguished by their lack of interest in their individual personal development, by their ability to see God immanent in all faiths and not just in their particular brand of religious belief, and also by their capacity to live life in the light of the divine Presence. They represent the nucleus of a spiritual resurgence which will, in time, reveal a new perception of divinity.



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