By George A. Boyd © 2018
Establishing a disciplic relationship is ultimately a direct connection with God mediated through a Master or Initiate. It appears to pass though several stages.
The first order of a disciple’s relationship with God is at the personal level. This is part of what we call the aspirant or seeker stage of spirituality.
When aspirants relate to God from the ego, the first sign is the establishment of faith in God. The believer, at this stage does not know God, and imagines what the Supreme Being might be like.
When aspirants begin to relate to God from the core of their personality, or the Self, they often receive an intuitive reception of guidance, revelation of the meaning of scriptures, and directives to act kindly, ethically, and compassionately towards others.
The second order of a disciple’s relationship with God we might call mystic communion with God. In this this stage, the disciple enters into an altered state of consciousness and travels into the Superconscious mind. Several markers typify this state.
When aspirants are able to unite their attention with their attentional principle and travel consciously onto the inner Planes, in many traditions, they are called a chela. As they become more proficient with this skill, they may behold the inner guide form of the Initiate who supervises them, and experience astral communion with their Master.
Once the chela has gained the ability to travel at will into the presence of the Soul, the supervising Initiate will commonly anchor the Light or Holy Spirit (Shakti) in the attentional principle. This attunement channels the Omnific Power and Grace of God through the chela.
In many Paths, the chela will be led to meditate on a nucleus of identity (Manasa Dhyan), and learn to transform it along its track to a universal stage of consciousness. Once disciples reach this stage of Union with Divine Life, or Christ Consciousness, the Holy Spirit (Shakti) may anoint them to begin ministering, teaching, and guiding others.
The third order of a disciple’s relationship with God is the enlightenment and empowerment stage. At this point, the disciple moves beyond universal consciousness and moves directly into the Presence of God. At this stage, the disciple becomes an Initiate.
The Initiate, who the Divine anoints, and who dwells in the Divine Presence, has been given many titles. The Initiate might be called an Adept, an Adept Master, a Yogi Preceptor, a Light Master, a Cosmic Master, a Supracosmic Master or Guru, or a Transcendental Master or Sat Guru.
In the Christian tradition, the Master is referred to as the Son of God, who is an intermediary between God and human beings.
The Initiate or Master who guides chelas and supervises their spiritual evolution is capable of leading them through all stages of the Path and ultimately enabling them to become an Initiate in their tradition.
In some traditions, some rare, select Initiates become Incarnations or Avatars, where God the Father expresses directly through them. This form of the Divine that empowers other Initiates is the ultimate source of the Light they send to others.
If you practice meditation under the tutelage of a God-inspired and Divinely-empowered Initiate, you will journey through the mystic stages of discipleship and ultimately become like your Master. The form of Mastery you may ultimately attain is contingent on who the Initiate is, who supervises your spiritual development.