The Meaning of Life
Over the next 4 weeks, we will tackle the questions of why we exist, what we need to do to realize our Divinity and how we master life on Earth.
In this week’s video Mark kicks off the series with a short story that goes to the very heart of the real meaning of life on Earth today. What is the essential leap we all need to make?
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The meaning of life is not about how to be happy. It’s about how to be wise.
I remember at university I was thinking about this kind of thing a lot. I was studying the outstanding teachings of The Aetherius Society, including The Twelve Blessings, and, I was with a couple of friends and the meaning of life cropped up.
And I said, “Oh yeah, I know that.” And the other two guys were quite surprised that I said this. And one was even quite annoyed.
And she said to me, “You can’t presume to be the ultimate authority on everything.”
I said “I’m not the ultimate authority on anything. I’m just being honest with you that I have found the meaning of life through these amazing teachings.”
And she said “Well, what is it then?”
And I said “Well, I’m not going to talk about it if that’s your attitude. So we’ll talk about it tomorrow. Ask me again tomorrow, if you really want to take it seriously.”
Because this isn’t a party trick, or a game. I didn’t want to have a debate. I was happy to share what I’d found. But I wasn’t going to do it in a flippant kind of way. So the next morning she did actually ask me the question again, and I said “Well, when you ask the question ‘What’s the meaning of life’, what do you mean?”
She said, “What’s the way to be happy.”
And I said, “Oh no, that’s not the meaning of life. The meaning of life is not about how to be happy. It’s about how to be wise.”
And of course she didn’t really like the answer. We moved on to more mundane matters thereafter.
But if you are looking for the meaning of life just to be happy, I’d be pretty confident that you will fail. You may find some happiness, because that’s what you’re looking for and you find what you look for, but you won’t find truth because truth is more than happiness.
Ultimately of course truth will bring you great joy. Ultimately truth will release you from the enslavement of ignorance that we suffer life after life after life on this planet, but it’s a long and difficult journey, and if your only motive is to be happy it’s not enough. It’s not enough.
You need to want at least, I think, to find spiritual joy, or freedom – something deeper than just happiness as we know it, and now, on the threshold of the New Age, even that isn’t enough. You have to want enlightenment in order to serve. You can’t just want it to free yourself from suffering.
Part One – Why do we exist?
Following last week’s introductory video on the meaning of life, in this instalment Mark and Darren discuss the nature of God, the beginning of the universe, and our journey to the end of time
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It’s not just that all life is going through a journey, just to end up back where it started, but like all journeys, even if you do go back to where you started, you have all that experience behind you of the journey, which makes you somehow understand and appreciate that beginning point all the more.
I think when you’re looking at that question the first thing to do is to really try to understand what the question means.
And I would divide that into:
“Why do we exist?”
“What do we have to do?”
And, “How do we do it?”
That is an interplanetary state of consciousness. So, on Mars, on Venus, they will have some idea of this. Even they won’t know fully, though, because this really is the ultimate question in the most literal possible sense.
However, we should not be defeatist and then just not think about the meaning of life at all, because although we can’t get to the absolute, ultimate point, we can at least get some insights into what creation is really all about.
In the beginning, God – the Absolute, which is very, very different from a traditional idea of an old man on a cloud… This is something that is completely beyond our real understanding. We can kind of think that we understand it a bit – and that’s good to at least try – but we’re never going to, at least not in our current state of evolution, are we ever going to really have a proper appreciation of what this is. In The Twelve Blessings it’s referred to as “The Absolute”. And in the beginning this, for some reason that we do not know – this great “why” of creation – chose to involve itself in matter.
So it went from an unmanifested state into manifestation. The universe is made of the potential brought into being by the Absolute, and there is nothing outside of God in creation. There can’t be. This idea that there’s God and the devil and they’re fighting each other; it’s completely ridiculous. It totally undermines the greatness of God – the allness of God. It brings it down to a very basic terrestrial, frankly quite childish, level, I think.
Looking at the universe in that way you have the great, what’s called the “great out-breathing” when God created everything, and inevitably, eventually, there has to be the “great in-breathing” which is when all life goes back to God, but having benefited from the experience of having been imperfect.
There’s a wonderful line in The Twelve Blessings where the Master Jesus says that we go back to God as “Conscious Gods”.
I mean, although I don’t understand it properly, it feels like that is the magic of the whole thing, really. It’s not just that you… It’s not just that all life is going through a journey, just to end up back where it started, but like all journeys, even if you do go back to where you started, you have all that experience behind you of the journey, which makes you somehow understand and appreciate that beginning point all the more.
Part Two – What do we need to do?
Following Part One in our series on the meaning of life, in this instalment Mark and Darren discuss the journey of many lives to Ascension, and the conscious control of Kundalini, the mystic power within us, which is at the heart of this spiritual achievement.
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That is what we’re here to do on Earth; is to gain control over matter, and by raising the kundalini we will achieve this.
Dr. George King has been very adamant about that. This is the reason we’re here. This is what we have to learn to do, when we can do it we no longer need to reincarnate here.
[Mark] So what is it that we need to do to go back to that Divine potential – to that perfection? How do we realize our Divinity? It’s all very well to talk about it and to believe it, but how do we actually bring that divine potential into manifestation and ultimately go back to the Absolute?
Well, the answer is surprisingly simple, in terms of it’s easy to talk about, but doing it is a whole different matter. And the answer for us on Earth is that we need to raise kundalini; raise it with full control in its entirety.
Kundalini is a mystical force at the base of the spine. And it is responsible for every aspect of our consciousness. We could not live without kundalini. However, in the vast majority of us, it’s virtually dormant. And, life is about gaining control over this power; about taking it from its dormancy in to realizing its full potential. And this takes the form of consciously raising it up the spine through each chakra. And as we do this we will gain psychic powers and wisdom. It’s of course…
[Darren] Mastery over matter essentially…
[Mark] Absolutely mastery over matter. That is what we’re here to do on Earth; is to gain control over matter, and by raising the kundalini we will achieve this. So a great Master who could raise the kundalini to a high chakra at will would be able to levitate, for example; would be able to give fantastic healing; would be able to walk on water even.
They may choose not to do this, because it’s not good use of their powers. They don’t have infinite power. They have great power but not infinite power. And they may choose to use their powers in spreading wisdom, for example, rather than performing signs and wonders, which may appeal to the wrong crowd anyway.
[Darren] Because everything is a sacrifice of energy so when you make a decision to do something you’re giving up having used it for something else.
[Mark] Absolutely. Yes there is an idea that Masters are all powerful. And as far as we’re concerned with our puny level of spiritual power they are, but they’re not literally all powerful.
Nothing is all powerful except the Absolute itself. So, all Masters have to make a decision about how to use their energy. And, because of their great wisdom they will know how to use the energy for the greatest good. And the greater the Master, the greater the wisdom will be. And it’s wisdom more than power that really counts, because you could have… I mean it is, I don’t want to talk about this too much, but it is possible to pervert the potential of kundalini and use it for evil as well, up to a certain point anyway. You can’t do it indefinitely because the Law of Karma will stop you. But you can do it up to a certain point. And there are regrettably people on Earth who do have great powers but do not use them for a spiritual purpose. So
I’d just like to – since we’re talking about kundalini – I’d just like to say a couple of things so you that you don’t get the wrong idea.
First of all, I haven’t even come anywhere close to raising the kundalini myself. So this is, sadly, this is.. I’m kind of talking from the point of view of theory, rather than actual experience. But one day, each and every one of us will have this experience because this is the reason we’re on Earth. Dr. George King has been very adamant about that. This is the reason we’re here. This is what we have to learn to do, when we can do it we no longer need to reincarnate here.
The second point I’d like to make about kundalini just for the record is that it is because it is such a fantastically great power that there’s a lot of danger attached to it. We shouldn’t fear it, because we shouldn’t fear anything, but we should be mindful of treating it with due caution and reverence, I would say.
There are certain spiritual practices which are far too dangerous for the vast majority of people to attempt. And at the other end of the scale, there are spiritual practices which I don’t think are very dangerous but also aren’t very effective either, which have been given the name Kundalini Yoga, which are not really Kundalini Yoga.
There are certain spiritual practices which are far too dangerous for the vast majority of people to attempt. And at the other end of the scale, there are spiritual practices which I don’t think are very dangerous but also aren’t very effective either, which have been given the name Kundalini Yoga, which are not really Kundalini Yoga. There’s a lot in the New Age movement at the moment about kundalini dancing. This is not Kundalini Yoga in the sense of raising this power in its entirety.
This is a very, very serious thing. This is not about going through a difficult time in your life and trying to relieve stress. I’m not knocking that. We all go through difficult times and we all need to relieve stress. But Kundalini Yoga is about attaining the greatest possible enlightenment, not just a state of well-being. This is a state that people like you and me can’t really even imagine.
[Darren] And I think it’s worth emphasizing as well, because people take it quite glibly, that raising the kundalini and achieving Cosmic Consciousness, Ascension, this is lives of effort. Lives and lives of effort.
[Mark] Absolutely. Absolutely, it’s lives of effort. You can’t… there’s no such thing as instant enlightenment. Anyone who has enlightenment instantly has worked for it for a long time. You cannot just go from being an ordinary person to suddenly being enlightened. It takes, as you say, literally lives of effort.
Now the good news is though, you don’t know how many lives you might have spent already working towards the goal. So you shouldn’t feel hopeless. And the very fact that you’re watching this video probably indicates that you have at least an interest in spirituality, which probably means that maybe in a previous life you’ve started on the journey.
Sometimes people suddenly change. And of course that’s a wonderful thing when it happens. And sometimes you have to look at psychology in terms of how quickly someone might make it to enlightenment. So, if you have someone who’s maybe on a dark path but is an extremely determined, dynamic person, if that person has a sudden change of heart, then that person could end up finding enlightenment before Mr. and Mrs. Average who just plod through life gently. And a good example of that of course is St. Paul, who actively persecuted Christians, and then became one of the greatest exponents of Christianity the world has ever seen.
Part Three – Service
Following Part Two in our series on the meaning of life, in this instalment Mark and Darren discuss the most important shift we need to make as individuals – and as a global community – in order to really progress towards Enlightenment.
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To get to the question of how do we raise the kundalini, in a responsible way, ultimately the answer is: service.
Service does more than just give you powers; more than greatness; it makes you everlasting. What is everlasting? God. There is nothing as everlasting as God. There is nothing that is truly everlasting except God. So it’s by service that we truly realize our Divinity.
[Darren] We’ve talked about the why, well, as much as we can understand the why. We’ve talked about the fact that we need to raise kundalini, and how important and serious a task that is for us. But how exactly do we go about doing that? Or what is the way that we should approach that?
[Mark] To get to the question of how do we raise the kundalini, in a responsible way, ultimately the answer is: service. And I think I’ll just read a short passage from The Nine Freedoms given by the Karmic Lord Mars Sector 6 through Dr. George King in 1961.
This is actually one of my favorite passages in the whole series of transmissions. I remember reading it when I was new to The Aetherius Society and of course I understood it even less then than I do now, but there was a strange beauty and mystery to it that always attracted me.
“Serve – and you will become Enlightened.
“Serve – and you will be practicing true selfless Love.
“Serve – and the mighty Power of Kundalini will rise in natural, unforced fashion and open the Chakra jewels in your higher bodies, in will pour inspiration and you will be standing on the verge of the Initiation into Adeptship.
“There are no words great enough to describe the wonder of – SERVICE.”
And later in the same transmission Mars Sector 6 says this:
“This declaration do I throw into every mental realm. I would inform those aspirants, who, in total disregard of human needs, retreat into the wilderness: ‘Come you hence, for you are fools!’
“SERVICE, my friends is greatness.
“Serve and be great! Nay – be everlasting.”
And I love those last three words because I think, well my opinion of one of the things that might be meant there is that, service does more than just give you powers; more than greatness; it makes you everlasting. What is everlasting? God. There is nothing as everlasting as God. There is nothing that is truly everlasting except God. So it’s by service that we truly realize our Divinity.
There’s a wonderful quote by Dr. King where he says: “Service is the one and only way.”
It’s more than being able to levitate, more than being able to walk on water, it’s more even than wisdom itself. It is absolute oneness with Divinity. This is the path. There’s a wonderful quote by Dr. King where he says: “Service is the one and only way.”
Because we talk about there are many paths to God and that is definitely true. Dr. King has said that many times. The Cosmic Masters have said that, and it’s common sense, frankly, I think, that you can attain a level of wisdom through Buddhism, through Christianity, through Hinduism etc., whatever your path is. But at the end of the day unless there is service as a key part of that path, if not the key part, then you cannot really become enlightened.
This is the way to improve your karma, is to be of service to others. Give to others, and good things will come to you. Maybe not in the way you expect. You may not even think they are good things because these good things may come in the form of very difficult lessons. But still, if you serve, you will advance. You have to, because you’re selflessly giving, so the universe will have to selflessly give back to you. It’s absolutely fundamental to creation. It cannot be otherwise.
There are many ways to serve. We should find the way that enables us as an individual to do the greatest good for the world as a whole. And this could be giving healing to people in need. It could be fundraising. It could be giving spiritual teaching. It could be giving counselling. It could be running an orphanage. There are so many ways to serve.
[Darren] You’ve talked about a lot of different kinds of service that we can give with our various abilities and inclinations, but one way we definitely all can as well, which is accessible to everybody, is the radiating of spiritual energy through The Twelve Blessings.
[Mark] Absolutely, well, to the materialistically-minded person, when we do The Twelve Blessings it’s just wishful thinking and it doesn’t really do anything. And to that materialistic person I would say: you are perfectly entitled to your opinion, that is your right, of course. So, if you feel that way then please go out and be of service in a material way. Be of service in a way that you believe in because it’s definitely needed.
There are many, many forms of service that are needed and material service is absolutely essential on Earth today. So, I have the greatest of respect for people who devote their lives to doing that. And thank God there are a number of people who do this. Maybe they are atheists or of whatever faith; maybe if we had a philosophical discussion they would completely disagree with me on almost everything. It doesn’t matter though. The important thing, as far as I’m concerned, is that they’re helping others.
[Darren] And if only there were more…
[Mark] If only there were more, indeed. If everyone on Earth who isn’t doing anything at the moment devoted themselves to material aid to those in need. The whole world would completely transform, I mean beyond all recognition.
As well as material service though, which is essential, spiritual service is also very important.
Spiritual service gets to the very heart of what is wrong with mankind on Earth today. It gets to… Rather than just treating the symptoms, which are important. It gets to the very essence of the sickness that we as a planetary species have. And that sickness, in one word, is selfishness.
Another word might be ignorance, because the two are inextricably linked. And when I say ignorance, I don’t mean lack of education. You could have someone who was very highly educated but ignorant about what really mattered. And you could have another person who couldn’t even read or write who had a certain wisdom about them. So, when I say ignorance, I mean ignorance of what life is really all about, which is about service to others; about oneness with Divinity; about true, selfless love; about revering great spiritual Masters; about working in cooperation with nature rather than against nature; and ultimately about unconditional surrender to God. And when I say “surrender to God” I don’t mean like God is our enemy, because God is our essence. It’s surrender to what we really are. People talk about “you should be yourself”. “Be true to yourself”. Ultimately, being yourself is being God, and being true to yourself is being true to what God is.
People talk about “you should be yourself”. “Be true to yourself”. Ultimately, being yourself is being God, and being true to yourself is being true to what God is.
[Darren] I think one the most important points for me that I take away from that conversation is that we can continue ask about the meaning of life all we want, but almost as an intellectual pursuit because we have the answer. It’s been given to us over and over again in The Nine Freedoms that you just mentioned, and in the example of great great beings who have come to Earth. The answer is: service. And if we just remember that one thing and take that one thing away we can go back to the stars that we came from.
[Mark]Absolutely. I mean that is… I think if I had to choose a one-word answer for “what is the meaning of life?” I would say: service. Yes, kundalini is essential to it. Yes, an understanding of the cosmos is essential to properly answering the question. But in practical terms that’s the one word we really need to remember and practice.
I think if I had to choose a one-word answer for “what is the meaning of life?” I would say: service.Yes, kundalini is essential to it. Yes, an understanding of the cosmos is essential to properly answering the question. But in practical terms that’s the one word we really need to remember and practice.
This series features Mark Bennett and Darren Ball. Mark is the co-author of Prayer Energy and the youngest International Director of The Aetherius Society, whose teachings he chose as his spiritual path at an early age. You can learn more about Mark here.
Darren works as a volunteer for The Aetherius Society and is the creator of The Twelve Blessings website. You can learn more about Darren here.
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