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The Great Invocation

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Since the Great Invocation was given out in April 1945, it has been translated into approximately 75 languages and dialects, and its distribution is now worldwide.

The Great Invocation voices the destiny and Plan for humanity for the new Aquarian age. It is a prayer, an invocation, and a means of alignment which provides a spiritual inflow right to the very heart of humanity and from the highest sources. In the apparent simplicity of the Great Invocation is outlined the crucial role in the divine Plan which humanity is intended to play. It is a role into which humanity will enter when it has achieved its destined position as a fully functioning member of the planetary Triangle which also includes Shamballa, the centre where the Will of God is known, and Hierarchy, the planetary heart centre and the focal point or inlet for divine Love.

At the heart of this great Triangle stands the Christ, the World Teacher and the Coming One expected by people of all faiths and known by many names. The Great Invocation is said to be the complete new utterance of the Christ, as well as a tool given to humanity to aid in the preparation for the reappearance of the Christ.

No one can work with this Invocation or prayer for illumination and for love without causing powerful changes in one's own attitudes, one's life intention, character and goals, we are told. Such is the power of this great mantram that, when it is used regularly and with persistent effort to penetrate to its deeper meaning and purpose, one's life becomes altered and made spiritually useful. The spirit of co-operation with the divine Plan for our world becomes engendered in the mind and heart of one who works intelligently with, and on behalf of, the Great Invocation.

Let us, therefore, consider some questions which are occasionally asked about the Great Invocation and its intended use. All responses to these questions are drawn from the books of Alice A. Bailey.

What is the origin of the Great Invocation?

The Great Invocation was given to humanity by the spiritual Hierarchy, the aggregate of those members of humanity who have triumphed over matter, who have achieved the goal of self-mastery by the same path that individuals tread today. The spiritual Hierarchy is the result of human activity, aspiration and achievement; it has been created by and of humanity. The members of the Hierarchy have achieved a complete control of the personality or lower self. They are no longer centred in the individualised consciousness but have entered into the wider realisation of the planetary- group life, which includes all stages, from that tiny sense of social responsibility of the man or woman taking the first steps upon the path of spiritual maturity, to the inclusive comprehension of the Christ Himself.

The Masters are known as the "Custodians of the Plan". The Plan is the blueprint of divine Purpose, and it is for all people everywhere in the world. Only through humanity can the divine Plan work out, but the Hierarchy works under spiritual law and never coerces or pressures humanity. Individual freedom, particularly mental freedom, is never infringed.

The Plan works out under the impelling power of evolution itself. To hasten humanity's evolutionary development, the Great Invocation was given out in three stages over a period of nine years which included the earthly event of the second phase of the World War. As a result of the collaboration of Alice Bailey and a Tibetan Master of the Wisdom, "seven very ancient word-forms" were translated into "understandable and adequate" phrases in English.

These seven word-forms are said to constitute the complete, new utterance of the Christ for the coming 2C00-year epoch, and thus the Great Invocation is spoken of as "the Christ's own mantram".

Why was the Great Invocation not given out until 1945?

The World War, which was drawing to a close in April 1945, had had a profound effect upon the entire planet. The greatest war in human history had caused untold suffering but it had also quite literally blasted open human consciousness as a result of the destruction of old, outworn institutions, habits of living and crystallised thoughtforms that had held humanity in thrall to separatism and materialism, particularly since the time of the Industrial Revolution.

The agony of the war and the distress of the entire human family led the Christ, in 1945, to come to a great decision. He made the decision to emerge again into physical contact with humanity if human beings themselves would bring about the initial stages of establishing right human relations; and He gave to the world one of the oldest prayers ever known, but one which hitherto had not been permitted to be used except by the most exalted spiritual Beings. The Christ Himself used the Great Invocation for the first time in June 1945.

Who is the Christ and why is His return invoked?

The Christ is the Head of the spiritual Hierarchy of our planet: "The Master of all Masters and the teacher alike of angels and of men". The Christ belongs to all humanity, and not alone to the churches and religious faiths of the world. The Christ works for all people, irrespective of their religious faith. He does not belong to the Christian world any more than to the Buddhist, Jewish, Moslem or Hindu faiths. In fact, the name Christ is used in the Hierarchy as the title of an office and not in any way limited in the least to religious action but is concerned with all seven departments of hierarchical work of which religion is only one, the others being government, education, science, philosophy, psychology, and culture and the arts.

In the Great Invocation, the Christ is invoked as He is known to the Hierarchy. The Great Invocation is intended to be used not only by members of various religions but also by people of no religious persuasion. The use of the name Christ as it appears in the Invocation is not a limitation of spiritual understanding, but an expansion. This is as it should be in the new age.

The Christ is known as the World Teacher, and He is that great Being known to Buddhists as the Lord Maitreya and looked for by the Moslems as the Imam Mahdi. The word "Christ" (from the Greek Chrio) and "Messiah" (from the Hebrew Mashiahh) both mean "the anointed one": consecrated or set apart as holy.

This definition points to the Christ's role as an Avatar: a divine messenger who reflects the cosmic principle of Love. An Avatar is one who has a unique capacity to transmit energy or divine power. The Sanskrit root of "Avatar" means literally "coming down from far away", which conveys the idea of protection from above. An Avatar is an event and an embodiment of a divine principle or quality which seeks anchorage on Earth. But this need must be recognised by humanity and invoked by humanity, standing "with massed intent", in order to precipitate the descent of an Avatar.

The establishment of a nucleus of persistent energy is the constant task of an Avatar, and the work of an Avatar depends upon humanity's readiness to respond. Often this need does not manifest itself until men have exhausted all other resources. Then they look for a divine Intermediary or Mediator, and this hope and expectancy runs like a golden thread throughout the world's faiths.

How can the Christ return to Earth if He has never left humanity?

In reality, the Christ cannot return because He has always been here on Earth. He can only reappear. Thus His apparent return will be to outer active visibility in earthly affairs. Yet, as we know, seeing and recognition are two very different things. The Christ will be recognised by those who have the capacity to respond, in some way and on some level, to the Christ's quality, for ever the law holds good that like attracts like.

The Christ will transmit divine energy which will stimulate a deeply hidden and latent corresponding principle within humanity. All who seek right human relations will be gathered automatically to Him, whether they belong to one of the world religions or not. The true followers of Christ are all those who love their fellowmen and see no barriers among people, for the major effect of the reappearance of the Christ will be the stimulation of the spirit of inclusiveness.

How do we know when the Christ will return?

The Christ will have no proclaimers; no one to say "He is here" or "He is there" The Christ will be known by all in whom the Christ principle, which is love, is awakening. It is not for humanity to set the date for the appearing of the Christ, or to expect any outstanding aid or unusual phenomena. The Christ will come unfailingly when a measure of peace has been restored, when the principle of sharing is at least in process of controlling economic affairs, and when religious institutions and political groups have begun to clean house. If our work is rightly done, He will come at the set and appointed time. How, where or when He will come is not our concern, yet "in such an hour as ye think not, He will come" (Matthew XXIV 44).

Signs of the Christ's approach can be seen in the recent and ongoing "Cycle of Conferences" underway particularly in recent decades and often held under the auspices of the United Nations in such areas of concern as human rights, the needs of children and women, human habitats, population growth, and the environment and development. The presence of the Christ's energy is an attractive force, binding together for the common good This spirit is more and more visible in the contribution of the new group of world servers, a subjective grouping of all men and women of goodwill who work actively on behalf of the Plan. In all areas of human activity the new group of world servers is at work to establish right human relations, which is the fundamental requirement for the Christ's reappearance.

The Great Invocation is essentially Christ's own mantram and its sound has gone forth to the entire world through Christ's enunciation of it and through its use by the Hierarchy. Every disciple should make its distribution as well as its daily use a major duty and obligation, for the Great Invocation can be used with profound effectiveness, primarily by those who know something of meditation and thus have some skll in mental concentration and intense focusing. The most important contribution of all who would help to prepare the Christ's way is to teach humanity to use the Great Invocation so that it becomes a world prayer and focuses the invocative demand of humanity.

What is invocation?

Invocation and its inevitable response, evocation, describe that mysterious something-emanation, voiceless appeal, inherent urge towards the light-which is innate in all forms, and which is the cause of all progress or pushing forward along the path of expanding consciousness and penetration into the light. This is true of a plant pushing its way out of the darkness of earth into the light of the sun, of a child extricating itself under the life impulse from the womb of its mother, of the human being pushing into realms of greater knowledge, of the aspirant and disciple driving forward on the way of liberation, and of still greater beings penetrating into realms of divine life beyond the human being's comprehension. All comes about through invocation and evocation, appeal and response.

This evolutionary pushing forward out of darkness into light, from the unreal to the real, and from death to immortality, is an inherent urge in all forms. It underlies evolution and the interaction of cause and effect, for always we get what we invoke. The knowledge of this scientific fact will be one of the great liberating forces for humanity.

Why is the Great Invocation both a world prayer and an invocation?

The Great Invocation can be used with special effectiveness by those who have at least some training in meditation. The trained disciple thus can use the Invocation on several levels simultaneously. But the Great Invocation is not a meditation exercise. It is essentially a prayer which synthesises the highest desire, aspiration and spiritual demand of the very soul of humanity itself, and it must be used with that realisation in mind.

Why does each of the four stanzas refer to humanity?

In humanity, the fourth and middle, or mediating, kingdom within the range and variety of lives that make up our planet Earth, all lives and aspects of evolutionary development meet. The subhuman kingdoms-animal, vegetable, and mineral-find their consummation and the superhuman kingdoms their opportunity, for through the human kingdom all superhuman lives have passed at some time.

The keynote of our planetary Logos, the Lord of the World Whom some call God, is HUMANITY for it is the basis, the goal and the essential inner structure of all being. Humanity itself is the key to all evolutionary processes and to a correct understanding of the divine Plan for our world. All lives are progressing towards the human stage, are presently at the human stage, or have left it behind. The uniformity of experience which this instils makes the art of contact with the divine and the science of impression from divinity possible. Everything that lives on Earth is, has been, or will be human.

What is meant by the door where evil dwells?

The three aspects or divine potencies of Mind, Love, and Will are anchored in humanity itself-"the centre which we call the race of men". Here and here alone lies the promise of the future, for only here can all the divine qualities express themselves and find fulfilment. Only through humanity, alone and unaided (except by the divine Spirit in every human being), can "the door where evil dwells" be sealed. It is not God who seals that door, nor is it Hierarchy which forces evil back into the place from whence it comes, for the Great Invocation here refers to the evil which finds its origins not on cosmic levels, and therefore beyond man's capacity to resolve, but the evil which is allowed to manifest in human selfishness, hatred, separativeness, and materialism. It is struggling, aspiring, suffering humanity to whom the task of sealing the door is committed and humanity, we are assured, is adequate to the task. The responsibility of Those most skilled in using the Invocation is to focus and anchor the invoked energies of Light and Love and Power in the human kingdom. From that point, humanity can take over the task.

If all lines of evolution meet in HUMANITY, why does the Great Invocation refer to "men"?

Here a visit to that most occult book, the dictionary, is illuminating.

"Man" is from the Sanskrit word manu, meaning "human being", the root of which, man, means "to think". Man thus means "thinking entity" or "one who thinks". This is a highly significant point and one which does not concern sexual gender but rather, that aspect which is common to all members of the human kingdom and that which endows humanity with such a key factor in evolution, the mind.

The first stanza of the Great Invocation invokes the Light which originates in the Mind of God-a light which seeks inlet on our planet for the purpose of the redemption of planetary substance through the intercession of the human mind. The mind is what makes man a coherent unit of consciousness, and it is intelligence which is the basis of separativeness. Yet, manas-creative intelligence-is the key to the fifth kingdom in nature: the Hierarchy or Kingdom of Souls.

The mind is both a factor of limitation, of separation, and of contact with the inner and higher realms. The mind is a recorder of impressions of all kinds. The primary responsibility of humanity is to act as a major impressing agent in relation to the three subhuman kingdoms-the animal, vegetable, and mineral kingdoms in nature. Humanity's destiny is to be the exponent, the interpreter or representative, of the mind of God. Thus the close relation between the first stanza, which invokes Light from the Mind of God, and the fourth stanza, which invokes the restoration of the divine Plan on Earth through the co-operative effort of humanity. It is the mediating and redemptive role of man, the thinking, light-registering entity, which the Great Invocation addresses.

What is the "race" of men?

A race in the sense that it is used in the Great Invocation means an evolutionary stage. The race of men is one of three planetary centres-Shamballa, Hierarchy, and Humanity--upon our planet. The close relation of these three centres permits an unbroken series of impressions, relating one centre to another and developing the Science of Invocation and Evocation. Shamballa serves as the head centre-the centre of reception and direction-of our planetary Logos; Hierarchy is the heart centre -the centre of inclusive love, cohesiveness and the circulation of life-bearing energy; and Humanity is the throat centre and the prime creative agency upon our planet.

The outstanding characteristic of the human race at its present stage in evolution is its capacity for intelligent sensitivity to impression. The human race includes those who are sensitive to impression from levels both "above" and "below" the human. As humanity becomes adept at invoking the impression of Hierarchy, the civilisations and cultures created by man will adhere increasingly to the Plan. Here again emerges another reason for the importance of the centre which we call the race of men and an indication of humanity's crisis, for man is now at a point where the intellect is so strongly awakened that nothing can arrest his progress into knowledge which could be dangerously used or selfishly applied if nothing were done to safeguard him.

Why are the wills of men described as "little" if man's conscious co-operation is needed in order for the Plan to work out on Earth?

The personal will is that which supports and seeks to sustain the illusion in the human being that existence is separate and independent. The personal "little" will endows man with the instinct of self-preservation and self assertion The will of the personality is governed by the lower, analytical, form-bound mind, and desire is the emotional counterpart of this will.

When the lower mind is brought into contact with the higher abstract mind via the antahkarana-the bridge in consciousness which is created through meditation and service-the human will becomes an agent of the Plan, demonstrating a commitment to serve the Plan at any cost, as that Plan is progressively understood. So profound is the energy of the pure will that only a co-ordinated, consecrated thinker can register and wield it, for the spiritual will is an expression of the Law of Sacrifice.

What is the intended time span for the Great Invocation?

The Great Invocation is said to have a symbol in the archives of the Masters indicating the era or period in human history during which it can and should be used. Because the Invocation is Christ's own mantram and His complete utterance for the Aquarian age, we can assume that the period of its use will span at least the coming 2000 years. It is a group prayer for all humanity in the Aquarian age and therefore it can be used both as an invocation and as a prayer.

Humanity has reached a critical point in evolution. Human intelligence is now so strongly awakened that nothing can arrest man's progress into realms of knowledge which will be dangerously misused and selfishly applied if nothing is done to safeguard him from himself. Man must be taught to respond to higher, more spiritual values or the increasing stage of integration of many millions of human beings will simply be directed, with more effectiveness, to selfish and materialistic purposes. The form side of manifestation-mind, emotion and brain-must be brought into correspondence with wisdom, love and directed purpose.

It Is humanity's responsibility to implement the Plan of Love and Light on Earth. In this we see the opportunity of Triangles, a meditation activity in which groups of three individuals join together in consciousness each day to say the Great Invocation and visualise the energies of light and goodwill radiating throughout the planetary- network composed of all Triangles. Through this network in consciousness, the Light, Love and Will of God can stream forth into fuller livingness, fostering the transformation of human lives and establishing an era of right human relations.

The Great Invocation provides, as a result of its correct use, a spiritual inflow right to the very heart of humanity and from the highest sources. In receiving the Great Invocation, in its use and distribution, humanity has been participating in a cosmic event of tremendous importance.

Increasingly in the coming era, disciples and people of spiritual aspiration will grow in their understanding of the potent energy embodied in "Words of Power" such as the Great Invocation. Together with an under-standing of ritual, and using the potency of sound, the disciple in the future will work and build the new world with its culture and civilisation. From a study of the tonal values, numerological indicators, and inherent potency of Words of Power such as the Great Invocation, humanity will eventually gain in skill at building the forms and producing the group activities which truly express the Plan. Already we understand that scientific formulas have reduced the most intricate and complex truths to a few signs and symbols. A word or words can also provide "the power of embodiment" for spiritual truths. As the Bible says, "God spoke and the worlds were made". Such is the spiritual potential contained within the Great Invocation when used with precision, understanding of its divine origin, and the soul quality of true humility.

* * * * * *

"I challenge you to penetrate, through meditation, more deeply into the vital meaning of these words, these amazing words. They embody, as far as is possible in modern language, a formula which has been in the possession of Hierarchy ever since it was founded on Earth, but which is only now available for use, owing to the point in evolution reached by mankind. The wonder of these mantric stanzas is that they are comprehensible to members of the human family and to members of the Kingdom of God."

Discipleship in the New Age, Volume II p. 156

"Look for the underlying abstract idea in this Invocation. It is there. From your reaction to this Invocation, and your ability to use its phrases as 'stepping-stones' to certain levels of abstract thought not hitherto attained, I shall be able to judge your readiness..."

Discipleship in the New Age, Volume II pp. 156-57

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This page last updated 11th March 2000.