Compassion: The spirit of truth


Compassion, Sacrifice, and Higher Ethics in the Bhagavad Gītā, Nārada’s Bhakti-Sūtras, Voice of the Silence, and other mystical texts, viewed through the prism of Theosophy

About the Author


Christos A Bartzokas was born in Athens, Greece, 13th November 1947. He was educated at a state Gymnasium and the Medical School, University of Athens.

Following postgraduate training in Liverpool, England, he was appointed Senior Lecturer and NHS Consultant in Clinical Microbiology & Infection Prevention at Liverpool University and Royal Liverpool Hospital (1978); Clatterbridge Hospital (1986). He has published numerous research articles, chapters, and books.

He has always been interested in the fundamental principles of life. As an undergraduate, he became acquainted with Masonry and Theosophy. In his thirties, he studied comparative religion and philosophy. In his forties, his earlier attraction to Theosophy was rekindled. With mind applied to the works of HP Blavatsky and WQ Judge, he elected to retire from medicine (1998) in order to pursue these, as well as his long-standing interests in higher ethics and the welfare of humanity, full-time. He has since developed advanced courses for theosophists and independent thinkers on the Secret Doctrine, Mysticism, and Moral Excellence (2001). He travels extensively giving lectures and seminars to various philosophical groups.

In 2005, he founded the Philaletheians, a company of kindred souls who seek to reaffirm the eternal verities in today's world.

He is associated with several humanistic organisations and supports individuals in their studies in the UK and abroad.

About the Book

Two generations after HP Blavatsky integrated the world's sciences, religions and philosophies, eclectic thinkers are still in the process of assimilating her voluminous output. Altruism, however, the intelligent application of universal truths in everyday life, is not instantly recognisable in The Secret Doctrine , which is the epitome of Theosophy itself. And conversely, its metaphysical basis is explained neither in devotional texts like the Bhagavad Gita and Narada Bhakti-Sutras , nor in esoteric instruction manuals like The Voice of the Silence and Light on the Path . By bringing together ethics and metaphysics from innermost streams of higher knowledge, this study aims to demonstrate that the assertion in its title is not a mere figure of speech: Compassion is the Truth at the heart of our universe.

Two broad areas of uncertainty have prompted a closer look at the deeper meanings of Compassion, Sacrifice, and Higher Ethics:

  • Although Universal Brotherhood is ontologically implied within the all-embracing concepts of the first proposition of The Secret Doctrine , its ethical implications are not immediately apparent. And even though in The Voice of the Silence Compassion is referred to as “the Law of Laws,” this pivotal notion has not been linked with Law in the second proposition either. In Chapter 4, the unravelling of two enigmatic sutras in the Bhagavad Gita and Bhagavata- Purana , will demonstrate that (a) hidden between the cosmogenesis of the first and the anthropogenesis of the third, Compassion governs Universe and Man; and that (b) yuga-cycles, the theme of the second proposition of The Secret Doctrine , is one of three facets of Deity or Law—the other two being karma-action and yajna-compassion / sacrifice.
  • As the Upanishads , Gautama Buddha, and Sankaracharya are said to be the Lights of Eastern Wisdom, so The Voice of the Silence , Bhagavad Gita, and Light on the Path are its jewels. Having perceived that a common thread runs through the latter triplet, intuitive students often wonder how exactly these texts relate to each other and to the teachings of HP Blavatsky. Are they complementary variations of the same theme, or are they mere elaborations of different aspects of esoteric philosophy? Is there an underlying concordance linking them with the premises of Theosophy? Though unselfish action is the dominant theme in the Bhagavad Gita , its philosophical basis is alluded to here and there but not adequately explained. It is only when Lord Krishna's precepts are matched with The Secret Doctrine 's eternal verities (Chapter 2), that they all come into being. Further, when Narada's aphorisms on divine love were compared with those advocated in the Gita (Chapter 5), a remarkable concordance emerged. And, finally, when the “still small voices” of The Voice of the Silence and Light on the Path were compared (Chapter 7), these priceless little books, too, seem to speak with one Voice, the Voice of the Great Sacrifice.

Compassion is first and foremost an anthology of excerpts and quotations from the world's greatest works and teachers, viewed through the prism of Occultism. Its objectives are two-fold:

To bring forth the innermost essence of Compassion and Sacrifice so that their primacy, and that of Altruism, is appreciated—both in esoteric and in practical, everyday, terms.

To demonstrate that, like the sutratman of the Vedanta philosophy, true philanthropy is the connecting thread between Mysticism, Occultism, and the Heart of Being.

Although not aimed at Buddhists, Hindus or secular students of Oriental philosophy, who may not be acquainted with the Esoteric Science, they, too, may derive benefit and inspiration. But devotees to the Cause of Theosophy and to the Founders of the modern Theosophical Movement are likely to appreciate this effort most.

For those who may not be thoroughly acquainted with specialist terms, preparatory compilations have been provided on:

  • Five keywords, i.e., Christos, Desire, Duty, God, Love, Man (Preface).
  • Four key metaphysical concepts, i.e., Parabrahman, Mulaprakriti, Logos, Fohat (Chapter 1).
  • A correlation of the Bhagavad Gita's metaphysical allusions with the fundamental propositions of The Secret Doctrine (Chapter 2).
  • Arguments that “Deity is Law and vice versa” (Chapter 3), preparatory to Chapter 4.
  • Excerpts on Avatars, “Our Watchers and Guardians” (Chapter 6), preparatory to Chapter 7.

The book also features Tips for Pilgrims (Chapter 8), being compilations on Illusion, Faith, Experience, Imagination and Devotion, followed by eight essays on personal development.

There are 11 Appendices; 1341 annotations and references.



Introductory thoughts

Re-gaining spiritual knowledge
The inner wisdom of love
Assimilation of the universe's laws is the first key to manhood
Surrender of the fleeting to the eternal is the final key
Sacrificing others is a crime against nature
An approach to The Secret Doctrine

Chapter 1 Our most precious gems  

Parabrahman or Absoluteness is the One and Only Reality
Mulaprakriti or noumenon of matter is a veil thrown over Parabrahman
Logos or Word is divine thought concealed
Fohat or Light of Logos is divine thought revealed
Genealogy and gender of Logos and Its Light
Pause for inward reflection

Chapter 2 Prehistoric catechism of Practical Theosophy  

On the First Truth of Theosophy
On the Second Truth of Theosophy
On the Third Truth of Theosophy
Ten more Truths
The One becomes Two Ones: Parabrahman and Logos
The Three live within the One
Logos ever unfolds
        In the Bhagavad Gita
        Logos in the light of Theosophy

Chapter 3 Deity is Law and vice versa  

The essence of deity is Compassion, Harmony, and Love
Its manifestations are governed by the laws of nature
Nature incessantly shadows the divine plan

Chapter 4 One Law for All: three functions  

4.1 Karma-action
        4.1 (a) In the Bhagavad Gita
        4.1 (b) Karma in the light of Theosophy
4.2 Yugas-cycles
        4.2 (a) In the Bhagavad Gita
        4.2 (b) Yugas in the light of Theosophy
4.3 Yajna-Compassion / Sacrifice
        4.3 (a) In the Bhagavad Gita
        4.3 (b) Yajna in the light of Theosophy

Chapter 5 Narada and Krishna speak with One Voice  

Who is Narada?
        He is the Deva Rishi of Esotericism
        He impelled Animal Man towards intellectual freedom
Narada's aphorisms on Divine Love and Krishna's precepts to Arjuna are impossible to tell apart

Chapter 6 Our Watchers and Guardians  

Avatars are our Watchers and Guardians
The real Keisha is Christos: Internal Light, not external symbols

Chapter 7 Listen to the “still small voice”  

What is the Voice?
        It is the heart and pulse of the universe
        It is the Voice of the Great Sacrifice
What the Voice is not
Who hears the Voice?
Voice of the Silence and Light on the Path: Two books, One Voice

Chapter 8 Tips for Pilgrims  

Pierce the veil of illusion
Faithfully seek the darkness within, for, faith is Light
Faithfully confirm your experience, for, faith brings Knowledge
Faithfully validate your imagination, for, faith establishes Will
Devotedly feel the great heart within, for, devotion to all is True Love
Realise your ideals
Live your dreams
Axe the asvattha tree
Slay your mind
        Charity begins at home?
        Be temperate!
Act in person but impersonally
        Thoughts and emotions are one and the same
        Action speaks louder than words
        Higher and lower altruism
        Charity is a debt of honour
Merge your self in Self
Seek out the fifth way of loving
Listen to the clarion call

Chapter 9 Compassion throbs at the heart of the universe  

Concluding thoughts

Appendices A to K  

Appendix A Theosophists described
Appendix B Action, renunciation, and their endless variants
Appendix C At the threshold of the two paths
Appendix D Parabrahman: aspects, epithets, and synonyms
Appendix E Mulaprakriti: aspects, epithets, and synonyms
Appendix F Logos: aspects, epithets, and synonyms
        Difference between Logos and Demiurgos
        Difference between Logos and Ishvara
        Logos in Science, Philosophy, and Religion
        Logos in Gnostic Systems
        Epithets of Isis
Appendix G Fohat: aspects, epithets, and synonyms
Appendix H AUM: definitions, derivatives, parallels
Appendix I Conscience and consciousness
        Higher conscience
        Lower conscience
Appendix J A marriage made in heaven
Appendix K Alaya: aspects, epithets, and synonyms



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