T O L E R A N C E
Selections from the Agni Yoga Series
Presented before the Agni Yoga Society, November 18, 2008
1. The four bases which were given in the beginning of the Teaching should always be in your memory. I shall remind you of them: (1) Reverence for the Hierarchy; (2) Unity; (3) Co-measurement; (4) Great Tolerance.
Letters Of Helena Roerich I, 29 December 1932 .
2. Urusvati knows that tolerance is a fundamental necessity for evolution. Every sign of tolerance must be valued. We, Ourselves, could not help people without the highest degree of tolerance.
Supermundane II, 381.
3. Let Us explain how to understand tolerance. When we speak about a higher tolerance, We mean that Hierarchy can show leniency because the heart of the Hierarch is all-containing; it feels everything and knows all impulses and intentions, and weighs all the good and the bad. In His leniency the Higher Spirit descends into the sphere of the consciousness of the disciple, and by His indulgence and tolerance uplifts the disciple. But not thus must the co-worker accept the indications about tolerance. For the disciple who is intolerant toward his surroundings, the needed quality cannot be called leniency. When the development of this wonderful quality, tolerance, is indicated to him, it means that first of all he must exclude censure. The indication about tolerance does not mean to have always command over one's fellow-worker; it does not mean that the spirit is on such a level that it can condemn those who surround him. The indication about tolerance first of all must awaken in the disciple the understanding of the fact that the spirit must be freed from egoism, because selfhood carries the most frightful monstrosities. Hence, only the spirit of a disciple freed from selfhood can manifest leniency. On the path to the Fiery World one should understand the true significance of tolerance.
Fiery World III, 54.
4. It is related that the Envoys from the Sage of the Mountain came to Genghis Khan. In the coffer lay a golden chalice and multicolored vestures. An inscription read; "Drink from one chalice, but garb thyself with the garments of all nations." Thus was the Hierarchy indicated, and the tolerance worthy of a leader.
5. Likewise, again was revealed the need of tolerance toward many persons whom one has encountered more than once. Tolerance and patience are also the path of the Bodhisattva. This path is not in the clouds but on Earth. The effluvium of life is great; hence the path of the Bodhisattva is also needed.
6. Careful judgment will foster My Cause. Display understanding and tolerance toward other teachings.
The Call, 101.
7. Urusvati knows that religious strife is the cruelest of all. One should not interfere in religious disputes. People should not devour one another in the name of their Merciful God, and should work only to create good. The Teaching is good only when it is in worthy hands. This can be said about all human institutions. It was observed long ago that the quality of life depends on the integrity of the leaders. Great tolerance is needed, so as not to intrude upon the beliefs of others.
Supermundane III, 564.
8. Three centuries after the departure of the Blessed One, His disciples were already infected with religious strife. After only a century, Christianity manifested extreme intolerance. The last utterances of Mohammed were immediately followed by fanaticism. Religious controversies always destroy the sense of the true Teaching; therefore We now call for special tolerance and We reject controversies.
Agni Yoga, 469.
9. Each of you is writing about his striving toward unity. What then prevents it, if you fully realize this necessity? I shall answer: lack of spiritual discipline, lack of ability to apply the Teaching, first of all, to your own self. When one needs to show tolerance, the old habit of uncontrollable antagonism, or not-outlived atavism, rises in all its strength, and then all the best intentions are immediately forgotten. Of course, it is difficult to eradicate all the bad habits at once. Therefore, let us start out with the most urgent B the driving away of intolerance. Let us write with fiery letters in our consciousness this testament of the Teaching, and let us remember it beginning and ending the day, at work and at rest.
Letters Of Helena Roerich I, 11 February 1929.
10. Urusvati knows that patience is the parent of tolerance. Intolerance is the offspring of ignorance. Nothing obstructs achievement as much as does intolerance. One must become attuned to an attitude of tolerance from one's earliest years. And compassion is akin to it.
Tolerance is the best way. Those who argue should not be dismissed if their words contain just one particle of truth. This particle could serve as a bridge for unity. But patience is needed to discover such particles of truth.
When in the Subtle World, one can observe that it is precisely tolerance that leads to the attaining of higher vibrations. Consciousness will indicate where the like-minded ones are. They may be different in their looks and ways of expression, but their vibrations will be similar. Only real tolerance will make it possible to come close to them. Let the Teaching of the Supermundane World indicate all the qualities needed for this achievement. A common moral basis is needed, and also an understanding of the mutual benefit, when thinking about the Supermundane existence.
The Thinker instructed His disciples first of all to demonstrate a beautiful tolerance.
Supermundane IV, 752.
11. Two who sit at one table, opposite each other, cannot be opponents if they follow the same Teacher. Inclusiveness and tolerance are one. Only treason cannot be tolerated. Agni Yoga, 311.
12. Urusvati knows that tolerance is totally misunderstood. It is often seen either as condescension or as overindulgence of others. Since both of these are considered to be wrong, it is clear that the very idea of tolerance is not perceived in a proper way. But We see it as one of the basic qualities of humaneness. In human relations it must be reciprocal. All earthly life should be based on tolerance and compassion. Sometimes people manifest these benevolent attitudes consciously, but more often their tolerance and compassion are simply the result of an inherent goodness, and they themselves do not always recognize the value of these acts of kindness.
Supermundane III, 553.
13. Broad-mindedness is based on tolerance.
Supermundane II, 290.
14. Urusvati knows the value of the inborn qualities of broad-mindedness and tolerance. These must be stressed especially, for people do not ordinarily think about them. They may complain about intolerance and even see it as a sign of savagery, but at the same time do not want to think about ways to develop tolerance.
Man does not want to examine the foundations upon which tolerance and open-mindedness grow, yet these qualities are akin to compassion. They teach one to look attentively into the consciousness of one's neighbor to understand the causes of his mistakes. People should be taught, and their moral qualities awakened, but this task is impossible without looking at each person individually. Every one errs in his own way, and the reasons for his errors may be deeply embedded. It is impossible to judge a crowd by its shouting and wailing. Everyone has his own pain and is in need of individual treatment.
People must not forget about broad-mindedness and tolerance, for these bridges will be needed in the Supermundane World..
The Thinker said, "Learn tolerance and it will teach you great patience."
Supermundane IV, 788.
15. Urusvati knows how important great patience is. It is thought that this bulwark of human achievement is based upon knowledge, but the special quality called tolerance is needed even more; therefore one may say that patience is tolerance. This treasured quality must be cultivated. Tolerance is especially needed in the Supermundane World, for without this quality man builds a pitiable existence for himself. He will reject all whom he meets, for in each one he will find some trait unpleasant to him. Because of this fault he will not be able to notice the most valuable accumulations. Therefore, broad tolerance must be taught to children, even in their earliest years. They must learn to discern the most valued qualities in others, and not exaggerate unpleasant faults, especially since so many seeming faults appear to be faults only at the time. When their consciousness grows, they will feel ashamed of their intolerance. Useful books can be written about the harm of intolerance. Many historic examples could be cited in which so-called prestigious authorities failed to recognize the most useful discoveries of their time, and how such narrow-minded leaders became the laughing-stock of future generations. To learn not to reject is a step on the path to great patience.
The Thinker advised His disciples to develop tolerance as the means of broadening consciousness.
Supermundane IV, 807.
16. Thus, my advice to you who have felt the fiery burning of the heart toward the Teaching will be to strengthen yourselves in patience through love. Each irritation restrained, each manifestation of tolerance will be like a flower offering for the Teaching.
Letters Of Helena Roerich II, 26 January 1939.