By George A. Boyd © 2021
A: It depends on what level a spiritual teaching is being given. There are seven major levels at which a spiritual teaching can be communicated:
- Popular – This approach breaks down the teaching into very simple examples. It uses analogies to explain concepts. It gives key ideas without complex elaboration. You would find this level of teaching in “popular psychology”—magazine treatments of meditation and spirituality.
- Academic – This teaching level uses religious and scholarly citations to structure its presentation, which may be given as a lecture, a seminar, a scholarly paper, or a journal article. It constructs models to visualize the interrelationships between concepts. It comments on the meaning of the ideas presented in the scriptures and core texts of the teaching. It may compare and contrast these ideas with those presented in other religions or spiritual groups. It defines terms it uses in its exposition. It is based on established scholarship. This may require that you learn theological language to comprehend the teachings as they are presented at this level. Theologians and religious commentators communicate at this level.
- Metaphysical – The terminology used refers to essences and principles that can be readily understood and accessed, but an experience of the idea is necessary to fully grasp the meaning. Aspirants access these ideas through hypnosis or guided meditation. These essences and principles can be found in the Subtle Realm (“Pagan,” Wiccan, Magical, and Occult groups), the Biophysical Universe (Native American spirituality); Abstract Mind Plane (Process Meditation, Self-Hypnosis, Coaching and New Thought groups); Psychic Realm (Spiritualist, UFO groups, and channeling circles); Wisdom Plane (Forgiveness and 12-step groups); and First Exoteric Initiation (interpreting scriptural texts, symbols, and archetypes in Christian and Jewish sects). Many of the New Age, Christian and Jewish spiritual traditions tap into this style of teaching, where they will present an idea, elaborate upon it, and have those who are receiving the message contemplate upon it.
- Mystic – The languaging is designed to lead you into immersion in an altered state of consciousness. It cannot be understood intellectually. It is Gnostic: it can only be known through ineffable and wordless experience. It may be expressed through poetry. Christian and Jewish mystics, Sufis, Zen Buddhists and Taoists, and those who give Knowledge (initiation into the seventh Transcendental Path) convey their teachings in this way.
- Esoteric One – Here, the general narrative is understandable, but specific terms are not defined, so it is not possible to penetrate the teachings without initiation into the experience of the essence awakened in that Path and impartation of the Path’s core teachings. Buddhist and Hindu teachings, as well as many Paths established in the Cosmic, Supracosmic, or Transcendental bands of the Continuum utilize this style of teaching.
- Esoteric Two – The teachings are veiled in cryptic, arcane language and complex symbols. Only those with extensive training in the symbolic keys can fathom these teachings. This type of transmission of hidden knowledge typifies the Mystery School teachings, Kabala, and Theosophy.
- Esoteric Three – Only Masters or Initiates and their intimate disciples can penetrate this level of teaching. It is often shared as a telepathic impress, as a wordless glance, or spoken in the sacred Senzar language—the language of the Soul and of the angels. It is completely unintelligible outside the circle of initiation; this knowledge is not disseminated to those whom are not initiated—or to those whom are not highly advanced on the Path, who have not undergone the requisite preparation and spiritual development to understand these most profound spiritual insights.
Popular and academic treatments do not penetrate to the depths of a spiritual teaching. They can explain concepts, but they can’t provide an experiential means of fully grasping what is taught.
Metaphysical teachings span from the Subtle Realm to the First Exoteric Initiation. While they can share some experience of the idea they have explicated, but they can’t explain ideas that are outside of their narrow band of the Continuum.
Mystic spiritual teachings bypass intellectual understanding and opt for direct immersion in Mystery. This leads to mystification. But when you do have experiences at this level, it is timeless and ineffable.
Buddhist and Hindu teachings typically use the esoteric one approach, as do many other traditions anchored in the Cosmic, Supracosmic, and Transcendental Spheres. While you may follow part of what they are saying, you get stuck on the terminology they use and have no experience of the essence they indicate in their writings or oral teaching. Unlike metaphysical level teachings, the levels where these principles and essences dwell are at profound depths of the Continuum, so those who have not been trained in how to unite with the essences with which they do Pathwork, cannot be readily access this material. Only after initiation into their Path—and with study of books and scriptures and attendance at inspired discourse events—could you begin to grasp the meanings of the terms used in these teachings.
Esoteric two requires in-depth immersion in the teachings to understand the “secret code” that enable you to understand these highly abstruse teachings. Highly abstract meditations like Gematria, working out anagrams, unraveling complex symbols or figures that represent esoteric concepts, decoding ciphers and encryption, performing Pathwork on arrays of archetypes, finding correspondences, and penetrating to the esoteric meaning veiled in scriptures and other writings that the uninitiated cannot understand. Systems like Tarot, astrology, and numerology have derived from these deeper concealed systems of knowledge.
Esoteric three is the language by which Masters and their most intimate disciples communicate among themselves. It is not anything you might understand unless you have reached these same heights and entered the Sublime Abode where the Masters dwell.
Mudrashram® teachings, like many other teachings sourced in the Transcendental Sphere, are currently disseminated at the esoteric one level. While we provide an extensive glossary and articles going into greater depth on many of the concepts we present, you still cannot truly grasp what we teach unless you learn to meditate with us and awaken the three immortal principles—attentional principle, spirit, and ensouling entity—and truly experience what we describe at the seven stages of the Path.
You can learn these methods in our intermediate meditation courses, the in-person Mudrashram® Master Course in Meditation and the by-mail and online Accelerated Meditation Program, and build upon this foundation in the Mudrashram® Advanced Course in Meditation.
Perhaps some intrepid ones will attempt to popularize Mudrashram® teachings in the future, through producing basic introductory materials written at the popular and metaphysical levels, so beginning aspirants can grasp them. As Mudrashram® becomes a larger movement, this might spur some academic researchers to study our novel teachings and attempt to integrate them into a larger rubric of related spiritual teachings.