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INTRODUCTION  TO  AGNI  YOGA

 

Broadcasting 1

 

Basics

 

 

Ladies and gentlemen,

 

welcome to our new Series “Introduction to Agni Yoga”.

 

Today and in the following Broadcastings, we want present to you the most important teachings of Agni Yoga.

 

This Series deals primarily with the fundamental laws governing our lives and the universe as a whole. If you want to learn more about how to practise Agni Yoga, please watch our Series “Experiment Immortality”.

 

 

1. What is Agni Yoga?

 

Agni Yoga (in the West also called “Living Ethics”), is a Holy Scripture, comparable only to the Bible, the Koran or the Bhagavad Gita.

 

This book consists of 14 volumes with some 5000 pages altogether. Thus, it is about 3 times as voluminous as the Bible (Old and New Testament put together)

 

Agni Yoga is the spiritual foundation for the next 2000 years, the age of Aquarius.

 

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Agni Yoga is a synthesis of science and religion: A religion on a scientific basis and a science that penetrates with new spiritual methods of knowledge into the invisible, non-material spheres.

 

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Living Ethics is a philosophy that gives to everyone, regardless of his faith, an answer to the existential questions of human life, such as:

 

The meaning of life, the meaning of suffering, God, good and evil, life after death, the Supermundane Worlds, man's responsibility for his thoughts, words and deeds, the expansion of consciousness, psychic energy, etc.

 

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Agni Yoga is a practice of spiritual exercises that allows everyone, in what circumstances ever he lives, to lead a higher life. It is a spiritual martial art.

 

In ancient times the Shaolin or Samurai practiced sword fighting in order to defend their bodies. Today, the warrior of the spirit needs spiritual weapons to defend the life of his higher nature, his soul.

 

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Agni Yoga is a complete program for the renewal of both the individual human being and of human society as a whole.

 

 

2. Historical Background

 

James Hilton, in his famous novel “Lost Horizon”, tells us about Shangri-La, a remote valley in the Himalayas.

 

There, an order of wise Mahatmas has discovered the secret of immortality and set up a culture in which people live as in paradise: Without need, greed, violence, poverty and unemployment.

 

These Mahatmas of Shangri-La, or Shambhala as we say today, really exist. They have appealed to mankind in the last 150 years with three major initiatives:

 

 

Helena Blavatsky

 

The Russian Helena Blavatsky received three years of teaching and training in an Ashram of the Mahatmas in Tibet.

 

On this basis, she published books such as “The Secret Doctrine”, “Isis Unveiled” and “The Voice of Silence”. They form the scientific basis of Theosophy. He who reads these writings recognizes: This vast knowledge did not originate from Mme. Blavatsky herself. It evidently comes from a higher source.

 

In 1875, together with Colonel Olcott, Mme. Blavatsky founded the Theosophical Society, which exists up to today and spreads the teachings of the Mahatmas.  

 

 

Mahatma Letters

 

Inseparable from Mme. Blavatsky and the Theosophical Society are the Mahatma Letters: A unique documentation of the communication between beings of a higher order, the Mahatmas, and individual members of the Theosophical Society. They contain a wealth of teachings about the new world-view and its practical application, as well as about the work of the Theosophical Society.

 

The originals of these letters are preserved in the British Museum in London and there available for review to everyone.

 

 

Teachings of the Temple

 

The second great initiative of the Mahatmas is connected with the name of the American Francia LaDue. She received as of 1890 from one of the Mahatmas the Teachings of the Temple. These are a real Holy Scripture with invaluable instructions. They can be regarded as a preparation of mankind for Agni Yoga.

 

Together with William Dower, Francia LaDue founded the community “Temple of the People” in Halcyon, California. This spiritual center is still in existence today and has sections inter alia in Russia, England, France and Germany.

 

 

Agni Yoga

 

Finally, the third initiative of the Mahatmas was from 1921 to 1940 the handing over of the teaching of Agni Yoga to the Russian Helena Roerich, the wife of the great painter Nicholas Roerich.

 

This highest knowledge ever made accessible to mankind is today being cultivated, practised and spread by numerous Agni Yoga- and Roerich-Societies in many countries all over the world.

 

 

3. The core Statement of Agni Yoga: “Immortal Man”

 

If we were to try to summarize the teaching of Jesus in the New Testament with one sentence, we would probably choose:

 

Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. (Matthew 19, 19).

 

Likewise, we can reduce the essence of the vast ocean of Agni Yoga to just one core statement:

 

Immortal man — is this idea not worthy of the future? (AY 553)

 

Or, scientifically speaking:

 

We are infinite, not temporary. (Heart 515)

 

Agni Yoga paints a completely new picture of man: We are not perishable, mortal - we are eternal, immortal creatures.

 

Man should believe in immortality, he is entitled to it, it is in accordance with his nature. (Goethe to Eckermann, 04.02.1829)

 

What is the foundation of this epochal message?

 

All nations, the cultures of all times know: Man consists of two parts, a material, visible body and a non-material invisible soul. Our spiritual being, the soul continues to live on after the death of the body.

 

When one is seventy-five years old, it cannot fail that one sometimes thinks of death. This thought leaves me in complete peace, for I have the firm conviction that our spirit is a being of an indestructible nature; it continues to act from eternity to eternity. It is similar to the sun, which seems to go down only to our earthly eyes, but which, in reality never goes down, but ceaselessly continues to shine. (Goethe to Eckermann, 02.05.1824)

 

The body is only a transitory tool which allows the soul to appear and to act on the material level. Once it is no longer usable, it is cast off like a worn out coat.

 

Just as a man giving up old worn out garments accepts other new apparel, in the same way the embodied soul giving up old and worn out bodies verily accepts new bodies. (Bhagavad Gita II, 22)

 

The knowledge of the immortality of the soul is the common basis of all religions

 

Agni Yoga goes one step further: If man is made of a mortal and an immortal part, we should take the eternal part as our true self. We should identify with our soul, not with the body.

 

With the "visible" man we have nothing to do. He is to us only a veil that hides from profane eyes that other ego with whose evolution we are concerned. Our greatest trouble is to teach pupils not to be befooled by the outward appearances. (Mahatma Letters No. 43, Februar 1882)

 

Do not think: “I have a soul”, but: “I am a soul.”

 

To know the real do not think you have a soul, but the soul has you. (Teachings of the Temple Vol.2, Lesson “Life and Death”)

 

It is not the man who has the soul, but the Soul who has the man. (Teachings of the Temple, Vol. 3, Lesson "Center of Light")

 

By thus adjusting your consciousness you are able over time to transform from a material, mortal into a spiritual, immortal being.

 

Sometime man will become fully conscious of his own real identity, whereas he is now only conscious of a body and mind, which he mistakenly terms Self. (Teachings of the Temple, Vol. 2, Lesson "Reincarnation")

 

The aim of Agni Yoga is a higher level of evolution: a New, immortal Man who creates a New World.

 

The New Man is an eternal individuality. As such, he is invulnerable, because nobody and nothing can do him any harm; invulnerable he is invincible; invincible he is entirely fearless; and fearless he is completely free, from which results a new dignity.

 

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The New Man rejoices at his death, as his soul then enters a higher, better world.

 

He overcomes the material sorrows: They are vain and small from the point of view of the eternal path on which he walks.

 

 

The New World

 

The New Man builds a New World: We overcome the main evil of our time: selfishness. Only the immortal man can act completely selflessly, because he does not have to fear for his existence.

 

We replace egotism by cooperation and service to the common good. Communities of immortals create a higher culture, in which there is no greed, violence, poverty or unemployment.

 

For the details of how we can transform into immortals and create a New World, please watch our Series “Experiment Immortality”.

 

 

4. What does Agni Yoga teach?

 

Let me now give you a brief summary of the basic teachings of Agni Yoga. We shall discuss the details in the following Broadcastings:

 

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Reincarnation: The immortal soul, our true, spiritual individuality leads an eternal life. It walks an infinite path through a great variety of material and non-material worlds, planets, times, cultures and levels of existence. The most natural concept is that it returns to earth as long as it has something to learn here.

 

Without recognizing the continuation of the life of the spiritual part of our being after the death of the body, there is no meaningful existence.

 

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Next Karma: The free will distinguishes us from the animals. It is a great achievement. However, it requires necessarily responsibility. Freedom without responsibility would be a cosmic monstrosity.

 

Karma works like the physical law of cause and effect: If we do good today, we improve our own destiny in the future. Everything wrong we do, we shall have to make good later.

 

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Evolution: This is the very basis of our existence. Our eternal being was a stone millions of years ago. It then developed into a plant and from there into an animal, before it reached the level of man. It will continue to evolve during its infinite future existence to a Mahatma and to further, still higher levels.

 

There are no limits to the growth of the soul. Our higher spiritual self is endowed with a gigantic potential for the eons of evolution to come, which only calls for being unfolded.

 

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From the law of evolution follows the principle of the hierarchy of souls: Man stands above animal, animal above plant and plant above stone, because the divine spirit dwelling within all of them is expressed more perfectly on each further step.

 

The hierarchy of souls knows higher steps than man. Evolution has produced elsewhere in the universe far higher creatures and worlds. The real existence of these higher beings is the scientific basis of each religion.

 

Nature makes no leaps. The different levels develop naturally from their predecessors. Therefore, man is not separated from the levels above him. The actual connection of at least some well developed human beings with creatures of a higher degree of evolution is another scientific basis of each religion.

 

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The Higher World: Nowhere are the conditions in the spiritual world, from where the soul comes and into which it returns after the death of the body, described more accurately and vividly than in Agni Yoga.

 

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The meaning of life: Nothing of what the soul accumulates in good and bad properties during its life on Earth is ever lost. We take all this with us on our further, eternal path. This enables us to grow infinitely.

 

The path of the soul - or the meaning of life - is the unlimited amelioration of these accumulations and the continuous ascent on the ladder of Hierarchy, in order to reach ever higher steps of human development and to exploit our immense potential.

 

Like the children you sense within you the natural desire to grow, to become greater. The next level is that of a “Great Soul” - a “Mahatma”. The great teachers of humanity such as Jesus, Buddha and Mohammed, and many saints and spiritual heroes have already reached this step. They show the way to little soul like us.

 

Man is on the path to God. (Fiery World II, 369, 370)

 

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Finally, joy: The earthly life, and especially difficult conditions, offers countless possibilities to the soul to make progress on the spiritual path of the ascent to God. That is why the New Man rejoices at every single hour, regardless of how the circumstances look like.

 

Joy is a special wisdom. (Community 156; Agni Yoga 293 i.a.)

 

 

5. Unification of Religions

 

Finally, a very important point: We do not wish to found another sect, on the contrary: Agni Yoga advocates the unification of all religions!

 

The great teachings of all faiths all originate from one and the same source. They differ slightly, because only that could be revealed what a certain people of a certain time at a certain place with a certain cultural background was able to understand.

 

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Contrary to the belief of the fanatics, religious knowledge, too, is progressing: About 4000 years ago, Moses was able to impart the very simplest commandments only. Jesus' teaching to love your neighbour 2000 years ago went a big step further. Today, the time is ripe for an even greater disclosure of the one, eternal truth. Agni Yoga is the synthesis and contemporary continuation of all previous religions.

 

But even with Agni Yoga, no end is reached. If humanity over the next 2000 years understands and implements in daily life what has been transmitted, then another, even higher revelation will follow.

 

 

6. In-depth Reading

 

In a video, we can only briefly summarize a topic.

 

Therefore, we recommend for in-depth reading the booklets “Introduction to Agni Yoga”, regarding this Broadcasting Booklet 1 “The Immortal Man”. These booklets contain the most important quotations from the books of Agni Yoga regarding all the central themes of this teaching.

 

You can read them online at

 

www.lebendige-ethik-schule.de/hefte.htm.

 

 

 

 

 

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