Monday, July 17, 2006

Life Principles, I

I. Selection of Masters.

A master must possess higher knowledge in particular areas of study than her disciples in order for the disciple to benefit from study under the master.

In any relationship, when considering a particular subject, one is a master and the other is a disciple. It is not always apparent which person is occupying which of these roles. If two people are on an identical level, they are peers. Because the possibility of being genuinely on the same level could be debated, peers may be better understood as those who dance back and forth between the roles of master and disciple during their interactions, both imparting knowledge, and acquiring knowledge.

A master must possess the ability to "descend" near to the level of the disciple, in order to effectively give instruction. Similarly, a disciple who is proficient in that which has already been acquired, has an "unknown tolerance", or put otherwise, can handle a certain amount of unknown information for the purpose of processing it until it can be considered acquired knowledge.

If a master has the ability to descend fully to the disciple's level of proficiency, the student may learn without stressing the limits of his "unknown tolerance."

If a master can descend close to the disciple's level of proficiency, but not all of the way, the student may stress his unknown tolerance, and have a difficult time learning, but learning will still be possible.

If a master cannot descend near to the disciple's level of proficiency, then learning, if it occurs at all, will not be achieved with any degree of reliability.

There is a certain threshold at which even the greatest master is unable to descend to the level of a student. When enough students encounter such a master, the master is commonly deemed incomprehensible, an insane madman, or a lunatic.

The eager disciple will seek out masters who are situated just a little higher than their own proficiency level, saving the teachings of the higher masters for a later time, when a higher level of enlightenment has been attained.

It is essentially important to remember that each subject has its own proficiency. If a disciple is extremely proficient in even a very large number of fields, this does not indicate that he can successfully comprehend the highest teachings of another field, unless he works his way up to those teachings by grades, or degrees.

When a disciple attains the summit of teachings available from any chosen master he must be prepared to select a new master, or a new field of research, by which to continue his education. If he does not do this, he may become lost in the "false mystery", thinking he is making progress when he is only going in circles.

Do not be afraid to consider yourself and Deity as masters from which to learn. They may be the most capable of making the necessary descent.


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