Y O G I S M   A N D   M A S T E R Y
Selections from the Agni Yoga Series

Presented before the Agni Yoga Society, October 24, 2006

     Urusvati knows that We encourage mastery in all fields of work. Everyone should strive to perfect his art and his work. Even if these attempts are not always successful, they will nevertheless help one to achieve a new level of concentration.
     While on Our Path We always implemented the betterment of arts and crafts; We taught new chemical combinations; We encouraged ceramics and carving. We even taught people how to preserve their food. I speak of all this so that you will understand the variety of approaches to evolution. Let each one help where he can; no opportunities are insignificant. Where there is true striving, help is more easily granted. We try all the ways. Supermundane II, 298.

     Our life is a voluntary mastership and is not concerned with limits. Even on Earth it is possible to almost forget time, and service becomes joy. I affirm that one can prepare oneself for such service under all circumstances. One need not be a sage to accept life as something important and responsible. There are examples of even simple farmers who were ready to devote themselves to the idea of service. It was the loss of this concept of service that turned earthly life into slavery and insanity. But the time is approaching when people will be looking, even unwittingly, for the purpose of life. They will first refer to evolution in scientific terms, but the next step will be the acceptance of service as the right approach to life. Supermundane II, 305.

     The new must be seen as urgent and useful. Inapplicable abstractions have no place. We are weary of air castles. Even the far-off worlds must be mastered in their physical reality. Such mastery as, for example, over a piece of ice or over the chemical heat of the sun, must enter the consciousness, as must also mastery of the minutest products of matter. The retardation of spiritual realization is caused by a lack of attention to the manifestations of nature. Losing the power of observation, man loses the ability to synthesize. Agni Yoga, 20.

     How to awaken devotion? By goal-fitness. How to improve quality? By reverence for mastery. How to awaken creativity? By the desire for beauty. Agni Yoga, 67.

     Recall how I began with you the attainment of Agni Yoga. Similarly, lead your disciples into the domain of the mastery of the Fiery Yoga. Like sculptors, begin to shape the different surfaces of the raw matter. Suddenly and continually strike sparks of the fire of life from the surface of chaos. As the play of the Great Mother gathers power in the spiral turns of the energy of Fohat, thus fearlessly offer to people a complete — more complete than expected — understanding of the whole of life in the realization of the Infinite. Do not be concerned with the rising and falling of the spirit. These are only turns in the spiral of motion. Far worse are a continuous inattentiveness and self-concern. Agni Yoga, 163.

     An Agni Yogi must renounce the conventional in all national cultures, although temporarily he belongs to one of them. The Agni Yogi renounces narrow specialization in his work, although he can possess a superior knowledge of one thing and the mastery of it. The Agni Yogi chooses spiritual relationship over blood relationship. The shield of an Agni Yogi lies in his consecration to world evolution and in the stern banishment of prejudice from his heart. Agni Yoga, 171.

     We will affirm the concept of “by human hands.” Why do We insist on the need for action by human hands? It would seem easier to expand humanity's possibilities by providing access to some new subtle energies. But, once again, the heart of the matter lies in the consciousness. As long as the finer energies are not realized they will not be beneficial to people. In fact, it must be understood that energy not consciously realized can even be destructive. An unrealized energy, like an unbridled elemental force, can demolish all surroundings. Realization is almost mastery, and it is already co-measurement. Until humanity begins to realize the true meaning of energy, it is essential to insist upon the principle “by human hands.” Agni Yoga, 258.

     Only a conscious approach toward mastery of the power of co-measurement can manifest creativeness worthy of a better step. Therefore, each one on the way to Us must strive to creativeness, consciously directing his perceptions. Hierarchy, 87.

     Poor is the master craftsman who does not make use of all the riches of nature. For the skillful carver, a bent tree is a precious treasure. A good weaver uses each spot for the embellishment of his carpet. The goldsmith rejoices at each unusual alloy of metals. Only the mediocre craftsman will deplore everything unusual. Only an impoverished imagination is satisfied with the limits set by others. The true master develops great acuteness and resourcefulness in himself. The blessed spell of his craft frees the master worker from discouragement. Even the night does not bring darkness for the master, but only a variety of forms of the one Fire. No one can entice a master toward aimless speculations, because he knows the inexhaustibility of the essence of being. In the name of this unity, the master gathers each blossom and constructs an eternal harmony. He regrets the waste of any material. But people far from mastery lose the best treasures. They repeat the best prayers and invocations, but these broken and unrealized rhythms are carried away like dust. Fiery World I, 472.

     One’s mastery of thought does not consist alone in the deepening and concentration of thinking. One must also possess the knowledge of how to free oneself from untimely and debasing thoughts; thus thought is affirmed when we master it. It is not easy to free oneself from thoughts flying in from without, and it is difficult to cast off sad and burdensome meditations. But one should be able in like manner to send thought forward, and also to leave behind the one which is of no use. Usually, people are enslaved by their thoughts; and nothing so impedes advancement as grievous immobile thoughts. Most often such heavy thoughts are sent from without, and many eyes watch with malice, awaiting the suppression of energy. Learn to expel this obvious burden immediately, it is one of the worst aspects of Maya. Hardly a day will pass without an alteration in Maya. Thus, let us be doubly vigilant in possession of thought. Fiery World II, 227.

     Mastery of thought is a fiery action. The concentration of thought and its projection is a fiery action. But a far greater fiery energy is demanded for liberation from a thought. We have read about great saints who scorned earthly luxury and freed themselves of earthly accumulations; but, first of all, they had to conquer their own thoughts. Through long tests they learned to summon thought and to dismiss it. When We speak about mobility, it is necessary to have in mind primarily mobility of thought; and such meditation is useful on the path to the Fiery World. Fiery World II, 382.

     Just as man is attracted to certain kindred on the Earth, in the spiritual World he is attracted by a vortex created by his own actions. It is difficult to free oneself from a Cosmic vortex, therefore it is needful to direct the human consciousness to the inexorable laws. Mastery of Karma and of the laws of life requires true understanding of the Cosmic Vortex. Space consists of these vibrations, eternally moving in the spiral of the vortex. Fiery World III, 151.

     We are often accused of frightening people by putting so much stress on the concept of battle and for saying that Our Battle is endless. People assume that creation is peaceful, and battle destructive, but how can one think of creation without mastery over the elements, without a courageous struggle to overcome obstacles? Thus Our Battle, too, is mastery over chaos. If there were no such defense, the waves of chaos would overwhelm all achievements. Supermundane I, 116

     I am answering your question as to whether the versatility of Leonardo Da Vinci might be taken as a worthy example for emulation. Indeed, yes, providing there is real study and not a superficial diffusion. It is a fact than an advanced disciple possesses certain abilities. Even in the Buddhist scriptures it is said that each Bodhisattva should possess the mastery of three arts, or fields of knowledge, and be perfected in one of them. The more we know, the better we are able to perceive all the depth and dimensions of the great plan of evolution and all the complexity of life's structure. Letters of Helena Roerich, II, 14 May, 1936.

     The Elder Brothers of humanity stand on vigil, and wherever possible they strengthen and intensify the divine energy. Therefore, let the friends be patient, and let them read attentively the books of the Teaching, which are full of advices and indications pertaining to the necessary discipline for the mastery of this power. Letters of Helena Roerich, II, 19 February, 1937.