thought-forms



Thought Forms
Annie Besant and C.W. Leadbeater (1905)
 
It is well for us ever to bear in mind that there is a hidden side to life—that each act and word and thought has its consequence in the unseen world which is always so near to us, and that usually these unseen results are of infinitely greater importance than those which are visible to all upon the physical plane. The wise man, knowing this, orders his life accordingly, and takes account of the whole of the world in which he lives, and not of the outer husk of it only. Thus he saves himself an infinity of trouble, and makes his life not only happier but far more useful to his fellow-men. But to do this implies knowledge—that knowledge which is power; and in our Western world such knowledge is practically obtainable only through the literature of Theosophy. To exist is not enough we desire to live intelligently. But to live we must know, and to know we must study and here is a vast field Open before us, if we will only enter upon it and gather thence the fruits of enlightenment. Let us, then, waste no more time in the dark dungeons of ignorance, but come forth boldly into the glorious sunshine of that divine wisdom which in these modern days men call Theosophy.
  
The devotional thought of an unselfish heart is very lovely in colour, like the deep blue of a summer sky. Through such clouds of blue will Often shine out golden stars of great brilliancy, darting upwards like a shower of sparks. A mixture of affection and devotion is manifested by a tint of violet, and the more delicate shades of this invariably Show the capacity of absorbing and responding to a high and beautiful ideal. The brilliancy and the depth of the colours are usually a measure of the strength and the activity of the feeling, which often passes outward and usually floats suspended in the air before him.
In the same way if he thinks of a room, a house, a landscape, tiny images of these things are formed within the mental body and afterwards externalised. This is equally true when he is exercising his imagination; the painter who forms a conception of his future picture builds it up out of the matter of his mental body, and then projects it into space in front of him, keeps it before his mind’s eye, and copies it.

The novelist in the same way builds images of his character in mental matter, and by the exercise of his will moves these puppets from one position or grouping to another, So that the plot of his story is literally acted out before him.
 

With our curiously inverted conceptions of reality it is hard for us to understand that these mental images actually exist, and are so entirely objective that they may readily be seen by the clairvoyant, and can even be rearranged by someone other than their creator. Some novelists have been dimly aware of such a process, and have testified that their characters when once created developed a will of their own, and insisted on carrying the plot of the story along lines quite different from those originally intended by the author. This has actually happened, sometimes because the thought-forms were ensouled by playful nature-spirits, or more often because some dead novelist, watching on the astral plane the development of the plan of his fellow-author, thought that he could improve upon it, and chose this method of putting forward his suggestions.

The Third Class: That which takes a form entirely its own, expressing its inherent qualities in the matter which it draws round it. Only thought-forms of this third Class can usefully be illustrated, for to represent those of the first or second Class would be merely to draw portraits or landscapes. In those types we have the plastic mental or astral matter moulded in imitation of forms belonging to the physical plane; in this third group we have a glimpse of the forms natural to the astral or mental planes. Yet this very fact, which makes them so interesting, places an insuperable barrier in the way of their accurate reproduction. Thought-forms of this third class almost invariably manifest themselves upon the astral plane, as the vast majority of them are expressions of feeling as well as of thought. Those of which we here give specimens are almost wholly of that class, except that we take a few examples of the beautiful thought -forms created in definite meditation by those who, through long practice, have learnt how to think. Thought-forms directed towards individuals produce definitely marked effects, these effects being either partially reproduced in the aura of the recipient and so increasing the total result, or repelled from it. A thought of love and of desire to protect, directed strongly towards some beloved Object, creates a form which goes to the person thought of, and remains in his aura as a shielding and protecting agent; it will seek all Opportunities to serve, and all opportunities to defend, not by a conscious and deliberate action, but by a blind following out of the impulse impressed upon it, and it will strengthen friendly forces that impinge on the aura and weaken unfriendly ones. Thus may we create and maintain veritable guardian angels round those we love, and many a mother’s prayer for a distant child thus circles round him, though she knows not the method by which her “prayer is answered In cases in which good or evil thoughts are projected at individuals, those thoughts, if they are to directly fulfil their mission, must find, in the aura of the Object to whom they are sent, materials capable Of responding sympathetically to their vibrations. Any combination of matter can only vibrate within certain definite limits, and if the thought-form be outside all the limits within which the aura is capable of vibrating, it cannot affect that aura at all. It consequently rebounds from it, and that with a force proportionate to the energy with which it impinged upon it. This is why it is said that a pure heart and mind are the best protectors against any inimical assaults, for such a pure heart and mind will construct an astral and a mental body of fine and subtle materials, and these bodies cannot respond to vibrations that demand coarse and dense matter. If an evil thought, projected with malefic intent, strikes such a body, it can only rebound from it, and it is flung back with all its own energy; it then flies backward along the magnetic line of least resistance, that which it has just traversed, and strikes its projector; he, having matter in his astral and mental bodies similar to that of the thought -form he generated, is thrown into respondent vibrations, and suffers the destructive effects he had intended to cause to another. Thus curses and blessings come home to roost. From this arise also the very serious effects of hating or suspecting a good and highly -advanced man; the thought-forms sent against him cannot injure him, and they rebound against their projectors, shattering them mentally, morally, or physically.



Art: Lux In Tenebris Evelyn-Pickering de Morgan (1859-1919)



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