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Volume 1:647-676

In the two closing chapters of "Cosmogenesis," H.P. Blavatsky examined the evolution of mankind against the backdrop of the zodiac.

  1. (Chapter XVII). "THE ZODIAC AND ITS ANTIQUITY": The scale of H.P. Blavatsky's astronomical knowledge extends far beyond the scope of this commentary. Just like with the elementals in The Secret Doctrine 1:631 where the "adept" must draw a "great number of them" to him to see the future, the Zodiac simply demonstrates that human beings are also multi-faceted creatures. But what is significant in these chapters is her transition away from a study of "Cosmogenesis" and into a study of "Anthropogenesis." In The Secret Doctrine 1:650, she observed, "1,000,000 of years are allowed for the present Root-race (the Fifth), and about 850,000 years since the submersion of the last large island (part of the Continent), the Ruta of the Fourth Race, or the Atlanteans." This statement has often been interpreted to suggest that the Fifth Root-Race of the Fourth Round began about one million years ago. As we have already seen in The Letters of H.P. Blavatsky on page 243, a cycle is often considered to begin at its end. The period of 1,000,000 years ago correlates more closely to the end of the 1st Sub-Race in the Fifth Root-Race, not the beginning. The 2nd Sub-Race was well underway, and the 3rd Sub-Race was beginning to shape the distinct outlines of its future. It is like with the cycle of the Maha-Manvantara. The potential point begins vibrating at its end in the upward ascent through the Maha-Pralaya. In trying to understand how the Moon chain was the 18,000th re-embodiment of our current Earth chain (the 18,001st re-embodiment) in a Great Age, David Pratt, in his May 2022 article on "Secret Cycles," made a brilliant observation. He suggested that the Moon chain can be called the lowest or the 18,000th re-embodiment of the current Earth chain in a Maha-Manvantara if the "first minor manvantara" began "with an upward arc rather than a downward arc." When H.P. Blavatsky referred to the "3,000 cycles of Existence" in relation to the "Osirification" of the "Monad" in its solar periods in The Secret Doctrine 1:135, she connected it to an upward arc. In The Secret Doctrine 2:59, every "ancient theogony without exception--from the Aryan and the Egyptian down to that of Hesiod--places, in the order of Cosmogonical evolution, Night before the Day." In Collected Writings 13:303, she configured the ascending arc of a planetary chain as "Night." Similarly, H.P. Blavatsky pointed to the Precessional Cycle or "sidereal year of 25,868 years" in The Secret Doctrine 1:649. She divided it into twelve sub-divisions of 2,160 years each. But it can just as accurately be divided into seven sub-divisions of 3,600 years each, as G. de Purucker did in Studies on page 38. The Root-Races, Sub-Races, Family Races, National Races, Tribal Races, and Tribal Generations in the Fourth Round stretch down from the branches of the human Yggdrasil tree into the gallows of matter and endure for much longer than the generalized mathematical sub-divisions allotted them. It is all organic and alive. But once again, the cycles are counted at their ends and not necessarily from their beginnings. For example, the Precessional Cycle corresponds to the length of a National Race. The contemporary European National Race is about 9,000 years old since it became sui generis or a distinct class on its own, per Studies on page 36, within the broader Indo-European Family Race. But in Fountain-Source on page 164 this European National Race has another 16,000 years to run before its "kali yuga is reached, a small kali yuga, when there will be a great European catastrophe of nature." That is, the peak of the kali-yuga of the broader Indo-European Family Race is calculated from the close of the 4th National Race cycle on the upward arc when its successor 5th National Race cycle is already on the downward arc. But these ideas cannot be fully explored here. They will be developed in the next part dealing with "Anthropogenesis" in the second volume of The Secret Doctrine.

  2. (Chapter XVIII). SUMMARY OF THE MUTUAL POSITION: The purpose of this commentary on "Cosmogenesis" has been to follow the flow of the Great Breath into the Central Sun and its solar systems. In the final chapter of "Cosmogenesis" in The Secret Doctrine 1:673, H.P. Blavatsky summarized this mutual position for the Cosmic circulations, "Outside the boundaries of the solar system, it is other Suns, and especially the mysterious 'central Sun' (the 'Abode of the invisible deity' as some reverend gentlemen have called it) that determines the motion of bodies and their direction. That motion serves also to differentiate the homogeneous matter, round and between the several bodies, into elements and sub-elements unknown to our earth." No one communicated the power of this Central Sun better than the Transcendentalist philosopher Ralph Waldo Emerson in his 1837 essay "The American Scholar" on pages 64-67. He wrote, "It is one central fire, which, flaming now out of the lips of Etna, lightens the capes of Sicily; and now out of the throat of Vesuvius illuminates the towers and vineyards of Naples. It is one light which beams out of a thousand stars. It is one soul which animates all men." The neophyte, gazing into the sacred flames, learns that in "going down into the secrets of his own mind, he has descended into the secret of all minds." Then he shares, as Emerson did in his 1838 "Divinity School Address" on page 85, a life passed through in the "fire of thought."


H.P. Blavatsky, Collected Writings, Vol. 13 (Wheaton: The Theosophical Publishing House, 1982).

H.P. Blavatsky, The Secret Doctrine (Pasadena: Theosophical University Press, 2019).

Ralph Waldo Emerson, Essays and Lectures, ed. Joel Porte (New York: Library of America, 1983).

David Pratt, "Secret Cycles" (May 2022). Retrieved from

G. de Purucker, Fountain-Source of Occultism (Pasadena: Theosophical University Press, 1974). Purucker, Studies in Occult Philosophy (Pasadena: Theosophical University Press, 1973).

(Photo by Finn Mundi on Unsplash)


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