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“The Days and Nights of Brahma”– Selections from Theosophy’s Sacred Teachings in “The Secret Doctrine,” Part 1 of 2

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The 19th-century Madame Helena Petrovna Blavatsky was born into a noble family in Ukraine. As a child, young Helena displayed a gift for clairvoyance as well as an interest in metaphysical phenomena. Years later, she traveled throughout Europe, the Middle East and India, studying with various teachers and Sufi saints. Today on Words of Wisdom, we invite you to join us for excerpts from “The Days and Nights of Brahma,” from Madame Blavatsky’s “The Secret Doctrine.”

“This is the name given to the Periods called Manvantaram (Manuantara, or between the Manus) and Pralaya (Dissolution); one referring to the active periods of the Universe, the other to its times of relative and complete rest – according to whether they occur at the end of a ‘Day,’ or an ‘Age’ (a life) of Brahma. These periods, which follow each other in regular succession, are also called Kalpas, small and great, the minor and the Maha Kalpa; though, properly speaking, the Maha Kalpa is never a ‘day,’ but a whole life or age of Brahma, for it is said in the Brahma Vaivarta: ‘Chronologers compute a Kalpa by the Life of Brahma; minor Kalpas, as Samvarta and the rest, are numerous.’ In sober truth they are infinite; as they have never had a commencement, namely, there never was a first Kalpa, nor will there ever be a last one, in Eternity.”

“Of the pralaya before which fourteen Manvantaras elapse, having over them as many presiding Manus, and at whose close occurs the ‘incidental’ or Brahma's dissolution, it is said in Vishnu Purana, in condensed form, that ‘at the end of a thousand periods of four ages, which complete a day of Brahma, the earth is almost exhausted. The eternal Avyaya (Vishnu) assumes then the character of Rudra (the destroyer, Siva) and re-unites all his creatures to himself. He enters the Seven rays of the Sun and drinks up all the waters of the globe; he causes the moisture to evaporate, thus drying up the whole Earth. Oceans and rivers, torrents and small streams, are all exhaled. Thus fed with abundant moisture the seven solar rays become sevens suns by dilation, and they finally set the world on fire. Hari, the destroyer of all things, who is “the flame of time, Kalagni,” finally consumes the Earth.’”
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