THE GREAT INVOCATION
The beauty and the strength of this Invocation lie in its simplicity, and in its expression of certain central truths which all men, innately and normally, accept–the truth of the existence of a basic Intelligence to Whom we vaguely give the name of God; the truth that behind all outer seeming, the motivating power of the universe is Love; the truth that a great Individuality, called by Christians the Christ, came to earth and embodied that love so that we could understand; the truth that both love and intelligence are effects of what is called the Will of God; and finally the self-evident truth that only through humanity itself can the divine Plan work out.
This entire Invocation refers to that impending, overshadowing and revelatory storehouse of energy, the immediate cause of all events on earth which indicate the emergence of that which is new and better; these events demonstrate the moving onward of the human consciousness into greater light.
The usual invocative appeal has hitherto been selfish in nature and temporary in its formulation. Men have prayed for themselves; they have invoked divine help for those they love; they have given a material interpretation to their basic needs. This Invocation is a world prayer; it has no personal appeal or temporal invocative urge; it expresses humanity’s need and pierces through all the difficulties, doubts and questionings straight to the Mind and the Heart of the One in Whom we live and move and have our being-the One Who will stay with us until the end of time itself and “until the last weary pilgrim has found his way home.”
From the point of light within the Mind of God
Let light stream forth into the minds of men.
Let Light descend on Earth.
In the first three lines, we have reference to the Mind of God as a focal point for divine light. This refers to the soul of all things. The term soul with its major attribute of enlightenment includes the human soul and that consummating point of light
which we regard as the “overshadowing” soul of humanity. That soul brings light and spreads enlightenment. It is necessary always to remember that light is active energy.
When we invoke the Mind of God and say: “Let light stream forth into the minds of men, let Light descend on Earth,” we are voicing one of the great needs of humanity and–if invocation and prayer mean anything at all–the answer is certain and sure. When we find present in all people at all times, in every age and in every situation, the urge to voice an appeal to the unseen spiritual Centre, there is a fixed surety that such a centre exists. Invocation is as old as humanity itself.
We are told by the Christ that men “love darkness rather than light because their deeds are evil.” Nevertheless, one of the great emerging beauties of the present time is that light is being thrown into every dark place, and there is nothing hidden which shall not be revealed. People recognise the present darkness and misery and consequently welcome light. The illumination of men’s minds so that they can see things as they are, can apprehend right motives and the way to bring about right human relations is now a major need. In the light which enlightenment brings, we shall eventually see light, and the day will come when thousands of the sons of men and countless groups will be able to say with Hermes and with Christ: “I am (or we are) the light of the world.”
From the point of Love within the Heart of God
Let love stream forth into the hearts of men.
May Christ return to Earth.
In the second three lines, the Heart of God is involved and the focal point of love considered. This “heart” of the manifested world is the spiritual Hierarchy–that great transmitting agency of love to every form in the divine manifestation.
Love is an energy which must reach the hearts of men and which must fecundate humanity with the quality of loving-understanding; that is what is expressed when love and intelligence are brought together.
When disciples are working under the recognition of the Christ, there will then come the time when He can again move among men in a public manner; He can be publicly recognised and thus do His work on the outer levels of living as well as upon the inner. Christ said when bidding farewell to His disciples: “Lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the days.”
When Christ comes, there will be a flowering in great activity of His type of consciousness among men; He will let loose into the world of men the potency and the distinctive energy of intuitive love. The results of the distribution of this energy of love will be two-fold:
First, the active energy of loving-understanding will mobilise a tremendous reaction against the potency of hate. To hate, to be separate, and to be exclusive will come to be regarded as the only sin, for it will be recognised that all the sins as listed, and now regarded as wrong, only stem from hate or from its product, the anti-social consciousness. Second, countless men and women in every land will form themselves into groups for the promotion of goodwill and for the production of right human relations. So great will be their numbers that from being a small and relatively unimportant minority, they will be the largest and most influential force in the world.
From the centre where the Will of God is known
Let purpose guide the little wills of men–
The purpose which the Masters know and serve.
In the third three lines, we find a prayer that the human will can be brought into conformity with the divine will, even though that may not be understood. There is indication in these three lines that humanity itself cannot as yet grasp the purpose of God, that aspect of the divine will which seeks immediate expression on earth. But surely, as the purpose of the Will of God seeks to influence human will, it is expressed in human terms as goodwill, as living determination or as a fixed intention to bring about right human relations.
The divine will, as it is essentially, remains the great mystery. Even Christ Himself struggled with the problem of the divine will, and addressed Himself to the Father at the moment when He first realised the extent and the complexity of His mission as world saviour. He then cried aloud: “Father, not my will but thine be
done.” Those words marked the relinquishing of the means through which He had been attempting to salvage humanity; it indicated to Him what might at that time have appeared to be an apparent failure and that His mission was not accomplished. For nearly two thousand years, He has waited to bring that mission into fruition. He cannot proceed with His assigned mission without reciprocal action by humanity.
This Invocation is peculiarly and essentially Christ’s Own Mantram and its “sound has gone forth” to the entire world through the medium of His enunciation of it and through its use by the spiritual Hierarchy. Now its words must go out throughout the entire world by means of its enunciation by men everywhere and its meaning must be expressed by the masses in due time. Then Christ can again “descend on earth” and “see of the travail of His soul and be satisfied.”
From the centre which we call the race of men
Let the Plan of Love and light work out
And may it seal the door where evil dwells.
In the fourth three lines, having invoked the three aspects or potencies of Mind, Love and Will, we have indication of the anchoring of all these powers in humanity itself, in “the centre which we call the race of men.” Here, and here alone, can all the three divine qualities-in time and space-express themselves and find fulfillment; here and here alone can love be truly born, intelligence correctly function, and the Will of God demonstrate its effective will-to-good. By humanity, alone and unaided (except by the divine spirit in every human being), can the “door where evil dwells” be sealed.
This final line of the fourth stanza is perhaps in need of explanation. This is a symbolic way of expressing the idea of rendering evil purposes both inactive and ineffectual. There is no particular location where evil dwells; in the Book of Revelations, the New Testament speaks of evil and of the destruction of the devil and of the rendering of Satan impotent.
The “door where evil dwells” is kept open by humanity through its selfish desires, its hatreds and its separateness, by its greed and its racial and national barriers, its low personal ambitions
and its love of power and cruelty. As goodwill and light stream forth into the minds and hearts of men, these evil qualities and these directed energies which keep the door of evil open will give place to a longing for right human relations, to a determination to create a better and more peaceful world and to a world-wide expression of the will-to-good. As these qualities supersede the old and undesirable ones, the door where evil dwells will symbolically slowly close through the sheer weight of public opinion and through right human desire. Nothing can possibly stop it.
Thus the original Plan will be restored on earth. Simultaneously, the door into the world of spiritual reality will open before mankind and the door where evil dwells will be closed. Thus through the “centre which we call the race of men,” the Plan of Love and Light works out and strikes the death blow of evil, selfishness and separateness, sealing it into the tomb of death forever; thus also the purpose of the Creator of all things will be fulfilled.
Let Light and Love and Power restore the Plan on Earth.
It is apparent that the first three stanzas or verses invoke, call for, or appeal to, the three aspects of divine life which are universally recognised–the mind of God, the love of God and the will or purpose of God; the fourth stanza points out the relation of humanity to these three energies of intelligence, love and will, and mankind’s deep responsibility to implement the spread of love and light on earth in order to restore the Plan. This Plan calls mankind to the expression of Love and challenges men to “let their light shine.” Then comes the final solemn demand that this “Plan of Love and Light,” working through mankind, may “seal the door where evil dwells.”
The final line then contains the idea of restoration, indicating the keynote for the future, and that the day will come when God’s original idea and His initial intention will no longer be frustrated by human freewill and evil, pure materialism and selfishness; the divine purpose will then, through the changed hearts and goals of humanity, be achieved.
DEEPER MEANING OF THE GREAT INVOCATION
The Great Invocation if given widespread distribution, can be to the new world religion what the Lord’s Prayer has been to Christianity and the 23rd Psalm has been to the spiritually minded Jew. There are three approaches to this great Prayer or Invocation:
1. That of the general public.
2. That of the esotericists, or of the aspirants and the disciples of the world.
3. That of the Members of the Hierarchy.
First, the general public will regard it as a prayer to God Transcendent. They will not recognise Him yet as immanent in His creation; they will send it forth on the wings of hope–hope for light and love and peace, for which they ceaselessly long. They will also regard it as a prayer for the enlightenment of all rulers and leaders in all groups who are handling world matters; as a prayer for the inflow of love and understanding among men, so that they may live in peace with one another; as a demand for the working out of the will of God–a will of which they can know nothing and which ever seems to them so inscrutable and so all-inclusive that their normal reaction is patience and a willingness to refrain from questioning; as a prayer for the strengthening of human responsibility in order that the recognised evils of today–which so distress and trouble mankind–may be done away with and some vague source of evil may be harnessed. They will regard it finally as a prayer that some equally vague primeval condition of blissful happiness may be restored and all unhappiness and pain disappear from the earth. This is, for them, entirely good and helpful and all that is immediately possible.
Secondly, esotericists, aspirants and spiritually minded people will have a deeper and more understanding approach. To them it will convey the recognition of the world of causes and of Those Who stand subjectively behind world affairs, the spiritual Directors of our life. They stand ready to strengthen those with true vision, ready to indicate not only the reason for events in the various departments of human living, but also to make those revelations which will enable humanity to move forward out of darkness into light. With this fundamental attitude, the necessity for a widespread expression of these underlying facts will be apparent and an era of spiritual propaganda, engineered by disciples and carried forward by esotericists, will mature. This era began in 1875 when the fact of the existence of the Masters of the Wisdom was proclaimed. It has been carried forward in spite of misrepresentation, attack upon the concept, and scorn. Recognition of the substantial nature of the available evidence and the appearance of an intuitive response by occult students and many of the intelligentsia throughout the world has been helpful.
A new type of mystic is coming to be recognised; he differs from the mystics of the past by his practical interest in current world affairs and not in religious and church matters only; he is distinguished by his lack of interest in his own personal development, by his ability to see God immanent in all faiths and not just in his own particular brand of religious belief, and also by his capacity to live his life in the light of the divine Presence. All mystics have been able to do this to a greater or less degree, but the. modern mystic differs from those in the past in that he is able clearly to indicate to others the techniques of the Path; he combines both head and heart, intelligence and feeling, plus an intuitive perception, hitherto lacking. The clear light of the Spiritual Hierarchy now illumines the way of the modem mystic, and not simply the light of his own soul; this will be increasingly the case.
Thirdly, both of these groups–the general public and the world aspirants in their varying degrees–have among them those who stand out from the general average as possessing a deeper insight and understanding; they occupy a no-man’s-land, intermediate on the one hand between the masses and the esotericists and, on the other, between the esotericists and the Members of the Hierarchy. Forget not, They also use this great Invocation and that not a day goes by that the Christ Himself does not sound it forth.
The use of this Invocation or Prayer and the rising expectancy of. the coming of the Christ hold out the greatest hope for man-kind today. Great Sons of God have ever come on humanity’s demand and always will, and He for Whom all men wait today is on His way.
INVOCATION AND PRAYER
The science of invocation is in reality the intelligent organisation of spiritual energy and of the forces of love, and these, when effective, will evoke the response of spiritual Beings Who can work openly among men and thus establish a close relation and a constant communication between humanity and the spiritual Hierarchy.
It might be said that invocation is of three kinds. There is the massed demand, unconsciously voiced, and the crying appeal, wrung from the hearts of men in all times of crisis such as the present. This invocative cry rises ceaselessly from all men living in the midst of disaster; it is addressed to that power outside themselves which they feel can and should come to their help in their moment of extremity. This great and wordless invocation is rising everywhere today. Then there is the invocational spirit, evidenced by sincere men as they participate in the rites of their religion and take advantage of the opportunity of united worship and prayer to lay their demands for help before God. This group, added to the mass of men, creates a huge body of invocative applicants, and at this time their massed intent is in great evidence and their invocation is rising to the Most High. Then, lastly, there are the trained disciples and aspirants of the world who use certain forms of words, certain carefully defined invocations and who–as they do this–focus the invocative cry and the invocative appeal of the other two groups, giving it right direction and power. All these three groups are, consciously and unconsciously, swinging into activity at this time and their united effort guarantees a resultant evocation.
By invocative prayer or aspiration–it matters not what word is used–spiritual energies are tapped and brought into activity, and by clear thinking, directed thought and mental perception, they can be made objects of human desire.
This Invocation is essentially a prayer, synthesising the highest desire, aspiration and spiritual demand of the very soul of humanity itself. It must be used in that way.
When the trained disciple or the aspirant in training uses it, he will assume the attitude of meditation–that is an attitude of concentration, spiritual direction and receptivity. Then he will pray. He assumes the attitude of meditation (an inner mental attitude and firm assumption), but employs the method of prayer which is a potent means of establishing and maintaining right spiritual and human relations. When in the attitude of meditation and using the implement of prayer (by means of the Invocation), he attains a relationship with the mass of humanity not otherwise possible, he can implement their recognised though unvoiced need, and he also allies himself with the spiritual Hierarchy Who are evoked by the desire of the mass of men.
A gigantic group meditation is going on in many different phases upon our planet. All the meditating units and the reflective groups are related to each other through unity of spiritual motive; they are seeking closer cooperation and endeavouring to bring their meditation work–consciously or unconsciously–into a state of positive universal quiet, so that the formulation of spiritual desire can be carried successfully forward, and the reception of spiritual energy can be a united reception. A great effort towards alignment is going on through individual prayer, meditation and invocation, which, as it strengthens, can serve all humanity.
Each can aid through the regulation of thought and ideas, through the cultivation of a loving spirit and the use of the Great Invocation whereby these spiritual forces and energies–so sorely needed–can be invoked.
Concentrate upon the Invocation from the point of view that it embodies the divine intent and summarises the conclusions of the thinking of God. Concentrate your meditative thinking and your reflective power upon them. Look for the underlying abstract idea in this Invocation. It is there. Use its phrases as “stepping-stones” to certain levels of thought not hitherto attained.
ORIGIN OF THE INVOCATION
Man invokes divine approach in various ways: by means of the inchoate, voiceless appeal or invocative cry of the masses; and also by the planned, defined invocation of the spiritually-minded, oriented aspirants, the intelligently convinced worker.
Little attention has been paid to the factor of invocation as expressed by the people of the world; yet down the ages, the invocative cry of humanity has risen to the spiritual Hierarchy and brought response. Let us illustrate: the spiritual statement by Shri Krishna, to be found in the Lord’s Song, the Bhagavad Gita, was an announcement, preparatory to the coming of the Christ. In that song He says:
“Whenever there is a withering of the Law and an uprising of lawlessness on all sides, then I manifest Myself. For the salvation of the righteous and the destruction of such as do evil, for the firm establishing of the Law, I come to birth in age after age.”
In the lawless and wicked period of the Roman Empire, the Christ came.
Another instance of a notable and most ancient invocation is to be found in the Gayatri where the people invoke the Sun in the words: “Unveil to us the face of the true spiritual Sun, hidden by a disk of golden light, that we may know the truth and do our whole duty, as we journey to Thy sacred feet.”
To this we should also add the Four Noble Truths, as enunciated by the Buddha and which are so well known to all of us–summarising as they do the causes and the sources of all the troubles which concern humanity. There are many translations of these truths; they all convey the same longing and appeal and meaning. During the Jewish Dispensation, there was given a statement as to human conduct in the words of the Ten Commandments; upon these, human law has been based and upon them the laws governing the relationships of people in the West have been founded. Then Christ came and gave to us the fundamental law of the universe, the law of love; He also gave us the Lord’s Prayer with its emphasis upon the Fatherhood of God, the coming of the Kingdom and right human relations.
Today, humanity stands at a peculiar and unique middle point, between an unhappy past and a future which is full of promise if the reappearance of the Christ is recognised and preparation for His coming is undertaken. The present is full of promise and also full of difficulty; in the hands of human beings today and in the immediate future, lies the destiny of the world and–if it may be reverently said–the immediate activity of the Christ. The agony of war, and the distress of the entire human family led Christ, in the year 1945, to come to a great decision–a decision which found expression in two most important statements. He announced to the assembled spiritual Hierarchy and to all His servants and disciples on earth that He had decided to emerge again into physical contact with humanity, if they would bring about the initial stages of establishing right human relations; He gave to the world (for the use of the “man in the street”) 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. He used it Himself for the first time, we are told, at the time of the Full Moon of June, 1945, which is recognised as the Full Moon of the Christ, just as the Full Moon of May is that of the Buddha. It was not easy to translate these ancient phrases (so ancient that they are without date or background of any kind) into modern words, but it has been done, and the Great Invocation may eventually become the world prayer.
So reactionary is human thinking that the claim made that it is one of the greatest of the world’s prayers and on a par with the other voiced expressions of spiritual desire and intention will evoke criticism. That is of no importance. Only a few–a very few–in the early days of Christianity. employed the Lord’s Prayer, because it needed recording, expression in understandable terms, and adequate translation before its widespread use became possible. That effort took centuries to accomplish. Today we have all the facilities for rapid distribution and these have all been employed on behalf of this Great Invocation.
These few thoughts may serve to make this Invocation live afresh in your minds and take on a new and vital livingness. It is uniquely related to all true and ancient beliefs. It holds out hope for the future and it is of present import and of practical importance. It is not vague or nebulous. It voices the basic needs of mankind today–the need for light and love, for understanding of the divine will and for the end of evil. It says triumphantly: “Let light descend on earth; may Christ return to earth; let purpose guide the little wills of men; let the Plan…seal the door where evil dwells.” It then sums it all up in the clarion words:
“Let Light and Love and Power restore the Plan on Earth.” Always the emphasis is laid upon the place of appearance and of manifestation: the earth.
You will already have noted–as you have studied the Invocation–a close relation between the first stanza and the final one; humanity’s destiny is to be the exponent of the mind of God, thus expressing active intelligence, motivated by love and implemented by will. That time has not yet come, but if human timing is correct and right desire is potent enough, for the first time in human history this destiny can be publicly recognised and people can be swept increasingly and voluntarily into an activity which is particularly their own destiny. That again is one of the primary objectives of the Invocation; its steady use will bring about an inclusive view of spiritual development and impart a synthesis to human thinking which has hitherto been lacking. As “light shines forth into the minds of men,” the divine Plan will be more widely sensed and the will-to-good will be more widely desired and invoked.
‘This great invocative cry is a threefold cry. It is the cry for light upon the way and light to flow into the dark places of the earth; it is also a cry for more love in the world as voiced by the men of goodwill and of humanitarian attitudes; it is finally, the intuitive appeal of the aspirants and the disciples in the world for the expression of the Will of God. Average instinctual humanity, the men and women of goodwill, and the disciples of the world are all concerned in this invocation, bringing in the attributes of instinct, intelligence and intuition. All are blended in the Great Invocation. Have also constantly in mind this basic fusion, now finding voiced expression, and take courage from the massed approach to the source of all life, love and light. Nothing can withstand the united demand of men everywhere in their graded and serried ranks.
The momentous significance of this presentation of a cosmic, planetary and individual alignment exercise, prayer or invocation is that it provides, as a result of its correct use, a spiritual inflow right to the very heart of humanity and from the highest sources.
The uniqueness connected with the Invocation consists in the fact that it is, in reality, a great method of integration. It links the Father, the Christ and humanity in one great relationship. Christ emphasised ever the Fatherhood of God and substituted it in place of the cruel, jealous tribal Jehovah. In the 17th chapter of St. John’s Gospel (which is another of the major spiritual statements of the world), Christ emphasised the relation of the Christ consciousness to the consciousness of Deity Itself. He linked the concept. of the Spirit to the fully developed soul-infused man; and the underlying unity existing between all beings in all forms and the Father. The Great Invocation relates the will of the Father, the love of the spiritual Hierarchy and the service of Humanity into one great triangle of Energies. This triangle will have two major results: the “sealing of the door where evil dwells”; and the working out through the power of God, let loose on earth through the Invocation, of the Plan of Love and Light.
This Invocation is also unique in the sense that it invokes all the three divine aspects simultaneously.
No one can use this Invocation or prayer for illumination and for love without causing powerful changes in his own attitudes and his life intention; character and goals will be changed and life altered and made spiritually useful. “As a man thinketh in his heart so is he” is a basic law in nature; the constant turning of the mind to the need for light and the prospect of illumination cannot and will not be ineffectual.
The spiritual Hierarchy of the planet cares only that humanity, as a whole, avails itself of spiritual opportunity. It is an opportunity which is present today in a more compelling way than ever before. The Great Invocation has: been given us at this time of opportunity for our use in cooperation with Those who use it on behalf of humanity.
The Invocation belongs to no one individual or group. It belongs to all humanity. Tens of thousands of people of goodwill throughout the world are using it every day.
The climax to this continuous invocatory appeal is the day of the full moon of June. (This is the full moon of Gemini sometimes occurring in May. The time of the full moo. is recognised throughout the world and is not affected by calendar differences.)
On this day a simultaneous and worldwide voicing of the Invocation sounds forth as a great outpouring invocative appeal on behalf of all humanity.
The Festival of June which is so uniquely Christ’s and which emphases His relationship to humanity, in reality covers three whole days, each with a different keynote:
1. The keynote of Love in its hierarchical sense–free from sentiment, emotion and personal emphasis–a love that sacrifices and understands, that acts with strength and decision and that works on behalf of the whole and not in the interests of any group or individual.
2. The keynote of Resurrection, emphasising the new note of livingness, of the living Christ and of that “life more abundantly” which the war has made possible by forcing a return to the real values.
3. The keynote of Contact, of a closer relation between Christ and His people, between the Hierarchy and Humanity.
The word “keynote” has been deliberately chosen and signifies the sound which preceded each major inflow at the May Festival, these energies will be released at a solemn ceremony on each of the three days. At each ceremony the Christ will say the Invocation alone, and then the united Hierarchy will intone the stanza alone, invoking light, love and the will-to-good (one on each of the three days). The result of this solemn three days of invocation will be followed by a climaxing day wherein the Hierarchy will unitedly, and led by the Christ, pronounce the entire Invocation, each stanza with its appropriate keynote, again sounded in unison.
Let Light and Love and Power restore the Plan on Earth.
Authors Details: Alice Bailey http://www.lucistrust.org