S E N S I T I V I T Y   A N D   A W A R E N E S S
Selections from the Agni Yoga Series

Presented before the Agni Yoga Society, February 18, 2014

     1. Urusvati knows that a permanent state of vigilance is one of the foundations of Our Inner Life. Do not think that such watchfulness is something supernatural. There are many people who possess this particular sensitivity, and can sense unusual vibrations and changes around them even during sleep. This state occurs without lengthy preparation, for the psychic energy works independently when outer conditions do not burden it. Therefore, if the energy functions freely, even unconsciously, how much more powerful it will be when it is consciously cultivated! If you also consider the longevity of Our souls, you will then be able to imagine how Our own qualities develop.
     People think that this continuous vigilance must be unbearable, but such apprehension is unfounded. No active worker who is a master of his craft considers his work to be intolerable. He is so accustomed to it that he cannot live without it.
     Likewise, a state of high sensitivity, consciously developed, will not be a burden. It becomes one’s natural state, especially when one’s level of development is such that less sleep is needed. Such sleep is more properly understood as a state of vigilant repose rather than slumber.
     We do not always release the subtle body. In this way We can retain consciousness during Our repose. If any of Us wishes to enter the Subtle World, then a Friend assumes the state of vigilance. He also watches over the body, in order to prevent undesirable currents from approaching. Thus you can see that vigilance, with the help of certain apparatuses, is a necessary condition of Our Inner Life.
     The Thinker taught, “Let everyone develop sensitivity; then success will follow a hundredfold.” Supermundane III, 543.

     2. One should know that having one's centers open enables one to reduce the imperfection in one's surroundings. It brings not only the development of sensitivity but also the offering of one's own forces for the improvement of one's surroundings. One can observe that the forces emitted for this are in some way absorbed by space, and this degree of openness of the centers is called “Lamp of the Desert.” After this follows the degree of “Lion of the Desert.” Agni Yoga, 86.

     3. Just as Fire is the all-embracing principle, so does Agni Yoga permeate the whole of life. One can notice how one's consciousness is gradually sharpened, how the real values of one's surroundings become clear, how one's understanding of the immutability of the cooperation of worlds grows. Thus life fills with the signs of highest understanding. Truth as reality enters one's daily life.
     Courageous seekers of Agni Yoga face the inevitable pains caused by conflagration of the centers, and also suffer a painful sensitivity to all injustice. But what do these dangers mean compared with the realization of the true liberating path!
     Agni Yoga is like the Morning Star, which heralds the approach of Light. Agni Yoga, 169.

     4. What can one call an Agni Yogi? Certainly, a supporter of Truth. The perceiving of Truth is as natural to the Yogi as light is to fire. The growth of sensitivity in a yogi cannot be described; it sharpens the five known senses, and also the seven senses related to the astral body, which can only rarely reverberate within the earthly shell, like a resonator. Thus, one should pay great attention to the feelings of an Agni Yogi. From them comes Truth, like light from a flame. Agni Yoga, 219.

     5. Urusvati knows how strong is the shield of the one who fully realizes lawfulness. One must have not only trust, not only faith, but also a sense of righteousness. Otherwise, how could the great saints and martyrs have withstood their hardships? Truly, only through an awareness of righteousness were they able to accept abuse with a joyous heart. It is the same in Our Abode, where the foundation of Our Work is righteousness. Supermundane I, 112.

     6. To simplify or to complicate? Even a child will prefer the former. When dealing with rituals one could choose the complicated way, utilizing all the finest shades of meaning of sound and color, but this way would be old and inflexible. The techniques of accumulation of sound and color are many. But when the most complicated mechanisms are invented, do not their creators then search for ways to simplify? So it is with the application of psychic energy. The majority has completely forgotten about this energy; the minority has taken its use to the point of cold fanaticism. But Fire, as the foundation of psychic energy, has no relation to cold!
     Agni Yoga directs humanity to the simplest ways. One exalted impulse of a Bhakti outdistances the slower Jnani. So also does the kindling of fire impel one to the correct destination. Fire refines the centers and develops a sensitivity that knows the right direction, just as the finest vessels are shaped in fire. Agni Yoga, 422.

     7. A petrified heart, not responding with all its fibers to the joy and sufferings of its surroundings, cannot belong to a disciple who walks on the path of Light. In fact, with perfectment the whole scale of feelings comes to such refinement that the heart of a high disciple on the last step at times appears to be an open wound, as it were, and he often senses physically its burning pain. Yet this sensitivity is not so much linked with oneself as with others and the Common Good, which for certain kinds of people is empty words. Especially painful is any kind of coarseness. Letters of Helena Roerich II, 25 January 1936.

     8. The growth of consciousness is accompanied by attacks of anguish, which are truly unavoidable. A growing awareness of the differences between the conditions of Infinity and those of earthly reality cannot but provoke the sympathies of a fair consciousness. There is no way to Infinity without a sensitivity to one's surroundings. Be assured that the greater the consciousness, the greater the anguish. Agni Yoga, 568.

     9. It is no accident that We often speak about the creativity of the Subtle World. Awareness and attentiveness prepare us with a vast field for creative work. It may be noticed that this creativity does not weary one and remains ever inexhaustible—and so the cooperation between the worlds takes place. Heart, 518.

     10. One must mellow the hearts of teachers, then they will abide in constant awareness. The child's heart recognizes what is aflame and what is extinguished. Not the given lesson, but the mutual aspiration of teacher and pupil reveals the world of wonders. Fiery World I, 583.

     11. One should know how to correlate many concepts which appear to be different. Thus, to those who do not understand, Hierarchy and self-activity appear as contradictory concepts; whereas Hierarchy requires precisely the development of self-help. He cannot approach Hierarchy who does not understand self-activity. On the steps of ascent, the first condition will be self-help and resourcefulness. One should depend upon the assistance of Hierarchy when all one's self-acting ability has been intensified. Each one knows that according to the extent of acquisition of knowledge the approaches of the Teacher become less frequent, because the man is raised to the step of co-worker. It must be understood that the Covenant of self-activity is already a sign of trust. Besides, the trusted co-worker can show reverence for Hierarchy precisely by his complete awareness. Thus, we can assist the Highest Ones through our offerings of self-activity. Fiery World II, 315.

     12. Truly, the path of compulsion is like the path of narcosis. He who has been taking narcotics must increase the quantity of the poison taken. In the same way compulsion must be constantly increased, reaching the point of madness. Interruption of a compulsion carries the threat of domination by the dark forces. Therefore, compulsion is worthless for evolution. A conscious awareness contradicts compulsion. But lack of awareness is the ruin of the whole structure. Brotherhood, 159.

     13. Urusvati knows that sensitivity must be cultivated. When We speak about a “sensitive ear,” some people assume that We refer to physical hearing. Some also think that sensitivity is an inherent quality, and that attempting to develop it is futile. Indeed, sensitivity is an inherent quality, but it depends upon the purity of one's consciousness. Even in the best instances, it must be developed, or more precisely, called forth from the depths of consciousness.
     One must first of all want to acquire sensitivity. A state of psychic alertness must be cultivated. This is not easy. Everyone will find within himself his own obstacles; some will be impeded by laziness, some by lack of faith, some by the bustle of daily life. Everyone is hindered by something, but the power of will can overcome anything.
     Nor should one indulge in wishful thinking, for this encourages one to rely on illusions. Psychic hearing should be developed with the utmost honesty, and experiences truthfully recorded. Earthquakes and other cosmic agitations will serve as an opportunity to exercise one's psychic sensitivity.
     Likewise, sensitivity to the auras of others opens a vast field for observation. Amidst the most ordinary routines of life, one can find opportunities for the sharpening of one’s sensitivity equal to those available in the best laboratories. Let man make use of all possibilities, because everyone is affected equally by cosmic influences.
     The Thinker taught, “Supermundane worlds send us the subtlest sensations; let us learn to be receptive to them.” Supermundane III, 573.