Most Antahkarana literature consists of definitions of the Antahkarana as the bridge between lower and higher mind, – this will be Part One of the talk.


Part Two is about the Rainbow Bridge aspect of Antahkarana, and Part Three is how we, trying to reach the “flower”, can follow the path of compassion and be antahkaranas too, and links or bridges with other people, by our behavioural example.



Roza and Margarita Riaikkenen’s definition of the Antahkarana: “the vibratory “bridge” between the Divine Presence and the individual human Soul transmitting the spiritual qualities acquired by the Soul, to the Divine Presence”. (1)


Antakharana is a Sanskrit name, combining antar,”interior, within”, and

karana, “sense organ or instrument”). (2) or: antar, between or intermediate, and karana, the present participle of kri, to do, hence meaning effecting”, acting”. (3) Kri also means to create, as in “Creator & Creators”.


Sankaracharya says Antaskarana means “understanding”, others says it’s “the internal instrument, the Soul, formed by the thinking principle and egoism”, whereas the Occultists explain it as the path or bridge between the Higher Manas and the Lower Manas, the Divine Ego, and the Personal Soul of man. It serves as a medium of communication between the two, and conveys from the Lower to the Higher Ego all those personal impressions and thoughts of men which can, by their nature, be assimilated and stored by the undying Entity, and be thus made immortal with it, these being the only elements of the evanescent Personality that survive death and time. It thus stands to reason that only that which is noble, spiritual and divine in man can testify in Eternity to his having lived. At death the Antahkarana is destroyed as a Path or medium of communication, and its remains survive in a form as the Kamarupa – the “shell”. This shell must be left to dissolve away, it is mortal and not needed, to keep connection with it would draw us down into the infernal depths, among the Brothers of the Shadow, the murderers of their Souls, the dread Dad-Dugpa clan.(4) Likewise, we may become an animal, if the Antakharana is broken. (5)


Before entering the threshold the Path to mergence with the Universal Soul, before crossing the foremost Gate, the aspirant must “merge the two into the One and sacrifice the personal to SELF impersonal, and thus destroy the “Path” between the two – Antaskarana”. (6) It is only the ‘process’ of bridging between the Higher & Lower Manas, and only exists when you commence to ‘throw your thought upwards and downwards”. (7)


The aspirant must tune him/herself to the Higher Self, of himself and of the Hierarch, like “the strings of the soul-echoing vina, (a lute), mankind, unto its sounding board; the hand that sweeps it to the tuneful breath of the GREAT WORLD-SOUL. The string that fails to answer ‘neath the Master’s touch in dulcet harmony with all the others, breaks – and is case away. To the collective minds of Lanoo-Sravakas. They have to be attuned to the Upadya’s mind – one with the Over-soul – or break away, like the lost souls do Once the aspirant is attuned his her being to “Humanity’s great pain”, a candidate for light, he enters the path of sorrow, compassion. (8)


“Man thus becomes fully illumined by the higher Pitris within him – the Kumaras, the Agnishwattas, and the Manasaputras – he becomes a Budha, having learned to discern between Purusha and Mulaprakriti. Living in Alaya, he will thus destroy his Antaskarana; he will become one with Swabhavat, buyt ever retain his Swabhava. – This is recorded by the Lipikas.”(9)


This can only happen, I think, when these higher powers permit it, when we are evolved enough. At the Crucifixion of Christ, which I take to mean the initiation of The Son of Man, into the Son of God, the inner sanctum of the Synagogue, housing the invisible God Yahweh, (which sanctum in pagan temples housed the image a particular god), the curtain between the inner court reserved for the elders and priests, was torn in two, FROM ABOVE, i.e. by God, removing the barrier between Man and God, and creating a link between the two, instead. The Sanctum was only visited once a year by the High Priest, on the Day of Atonement, or At One-ment, and on behalf of the ordinary folk, who could only worship at the steps of said temple. The high priest would sacrifice an animal to atone, for one year only, for the sins of the people. I think this sacrifice was the scapegoat, laying hands and transmitting all the people’s sin in onto the goat’s head – this goat was then released into the wilderness, a first goat having been killed for atonement from sin. – see Lev. 16: 20-28).




Theosophical researcher, Dr Don Shepherd, defines Antahkarana as a temporary link, the Sutratman carries forward, improved by the imprint of the karmic lessons learned in one life, to the next life – because Antahkarana is an activity, Sutratman is a structure, as opposed to an activity. The Antakharana links the twofold Manas lower, and higher, as it is both the subject and object at once, the cause of cognition within the human self, which simultaneously appears within that internal cognition which it has created. It is our human spiritual search for the inner god within the human frame. The very nature of cognition allows for the division between subject and object – the basis of individuality – that gives the lower Manas a momentary glimpse of higher states. But even when the glimpse fades, the lower Manas retains the impression.


Dr Shepherd goes on to say: Sutratman at whatever level, is the garments of the Monad, the combination of aggregates around the Monad that allow the Monad to be identified as an individuality. Monads are individuals and therefore can be identified. The Sutratman, as the thread-self, establishes an identity for the Monad. (10)


Antahkarana means inner sense organ, instrument, conscience, mind, heart, soul, seat of thought and feeling. In Hinduism, out psychological-spiritual structure, comprised of manas, buddhi, chitta, and ahamkara. This is distinguished from the term Bahya Karana, outer instrument or the senses or Indriyas) through which you sense, perceive, think and reason out. (11)


The upper, middle and lower selves are brought forth from Mother nature. The physical elements are the five bhutas with their “subtle prototypes”, the five bhutamatras or tan-matras, but also the physical faculties, senses and organs; the indriyas, i.e. the ten outer ones (= 5 karmendriyas” (faculties of action + 5 jnanendriyas (faculties of knowledge)] besides the threefold inner organ (antahkarana) comprising manas (mind), aham-kara (consciousness of individuality, and buddhi (universal intellect), all of which together with prakriti itself make up the total…24 tattvas” principles of nature, the five; also, the abstract principles of existence, physical and metaphysical – five ordinary senses, or seven, including two as yet latent in Man. (12).




This section of the lecture involves chakras, which we are encouraged not to develop, not to want powers, if they come the powers would be given to us by the hierarch, when needed, and not for us to decide to be kept, after this happens.

HPB says the antakarana is “wedged” in the uterine baby’s brain at the eight month & the higher Manas does not unite itself with the child before the completion of the seventh year of life (the age of Reason). There are seven cavities in the brain, empty during life, and fluid-filled upon death, and the Antakharana is the fourth – the seven steps of antkharana correspond with the Lokas. (13)


The seven selves were reached serially in meditation classes run by HPB, only for those qualified for such an experience. HP Blavatsky made a diagram for her inner group students – Buddhi is the yellow semi-disc, (maybe the golden “bowl” discussed in Ecclesiastes, to be discussed later), the vehicle of the Paramatmic shadow, and is the human Atman, the sun with the white sphere above Buddhi.  Within the blue Auric Egg is the orange macrocosmic pentacle of Life, Prana, within which is the red pentagram representing Man, and symbolizes matter. The orange pentacle symbolizes both the universe and Man; the upper manas (indigo) connects with the lower manas, (green), by a thin green line which binds the two together. This is the Antakharana linking the personal being whose brain is under the sway of the lower (animal) mind, with the reincarnating Individualality, the spiritual Ego, Manas-Manu, the “Divine Man”. (14) [I still don’t know what the inner sides on lower half of the pentagram, coloured in “the tenderest violet”, symbolizes].


Antakharana also means any kind of link, even between people – “every path or bridge between any two monadic centres…or intermediary between anyone or thing low, that is high – every messenger of truth and light between the Masters of Wisdom and mankind or someone that is low, to one that is high – every great and good person is an antahkarana between humanity and the spiritual essence of his or her own inner god. A person living in the noblest and loftiest part of his or her being, becomes such a bridge between the spiritual realm he is in touch with, and all other entities and things contacted by that person which belong to human life”. (15)  (Therefore is this similar to the Sephirophal tree, in the Kabbalah, with the Kether or Crown at the top, and all the branches below this making a diamond-shaped form, with disks naming the various “selves”, each counter-linked diagonally, vertically, and horizontally.




In Ecclesiastes: the Antakarana is the “silver cord” that joins the physical body with the internal bodies, or the eternal, divine man, which alone reincarnates, from the ephemeral bodies, which return to dust . “Remember your Creator (i.e. the spiritual heart of the universe) …(…or ever the silver cord be loosed, or the golden bowl be broken, or the pitcher be broken at the fountain, or the wheel broken at the cistern. Then shall the dust return to the earth as it was: and the spirit shall return unto God who gave it” i.e. take the upward path at death, so you’ll be linked with the highest. (16). (I think this means you go to “heaven” when your consciousness is skewed to the Path of Compassion, and for eternity”, because you’ll be living in the Eternal, i.e. timeless, non-corporeal, part of yourself – of course we believe we reincarnate, so eternity isn’t everlasting, a Catch 22?).


Diagram of Ra-symbol, Star of David, to Cross, to Cross with face in unfolded cube.  In Vol 2 of the SD, HPB describes the evolution of the Cross, from a horizontal line, Matter, intersecting with a vertical, Spirit, to a Star of David, through other stages, and finishing with a cube, unfolded into six squares, linked to form a cross, at the crossing of which is a face of a man, or a man himself – our inner Christos pinned at the intersection of spirit, “heaven”, and matter, the world.


There’s a stained glass window in a local church, where Christ is robed in white (as he appeared to the apostles, after His resurrection), haloed, but wearing a cloak of red. To me, this symbolizes the inner majesty of the inner Christos, hidden/protected, in the outer covering of our outer, physical self. Remember how the gods said they’d hide the inner god somewhere Man would never find it, (’til he was spiritually ready), they’d hide it within Man himself?


The hieroglyph for Ra, the sun-god (and the sun within the sun). seems to describe svabhava, or self-becoming, of the heart of hearts in you being informed by the soul of the soul of the universe, the sun within the Sun. The dot in the middle of the circle is the path through we are reborn, linked with the All, then return to be an example unto our fellow human beings, to become that which we were ever meant to be – a friend says this ios “going back to Life Central with all we’ve learnt in life”.


Christ gave himself up to death, upon the Cross. I think this means that the Great I Am, or Tat (That, the Great I Am), imparted himself into a pure human (Mary), “death” meaning the human condition of mortality, the Cross being the meeting of Spirit (the vertical bars of the cross), with matter, the horizontal bars thereof.


Initiants are initiated upon a cruciform couch, go to the heart of the Sun within the outer sun, and return three days later, clothed in glory. Before crucifixion, Jesus was referred to himself as the Son of Man (who has no place to lay His head), and afterwards, as the Sun of God. This is an involution by God, and an evolution of the human vehicle. Thus we go from being in Eden, non-self-consciously being linked with God, eating of the Tree of Knowledge, being expelled to learn about God, in the World, (which is his physical raiment), and finding Him again, through the Tree of Knowledge, (the Cross, in the garden of Gethsemene).


Christians believe there is a chasm between us and God, which resulted from the Fall of Man (as we would say, into matter, and self-directed evolution). This chasm is made crossable by accepting Christ as your saviour, the cross upon which he died, lays itself down over the chasm, so we can contact God.


HPB quoted Colossians in her Secret Instructions to Probators of the Esoteric School, under the Philosophical Rationale of the Tenet, p.88-89: re right living, once you’ve found the Path – Follow the path, and Be it: “For you died, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God”. The text continues: “Put to death, therefore, whatever belongs to your earthly nature….because of these, the wrath of God is coming…But now you must also rid yourselves of all such things as these: anger, rage, malice, slander, and filthy language… Do not lie to each other, since you have taken off your off self with its practices, and have put on the new self, which is being renewed in the knowledge in the image of its Creator. … clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience…” (Colossians. 3: 5-12).




Randdall C. Grubb, when he became Leader of TS Pasadena, enjoined us to live the teachings and to try and give back to the font of divine love, from which we draw so much spiritual nurture. Rand’s predecessor James Long said this too: “Do the duty before you, no matter what your station in life, and thinking right thoughts can make a big difference, by living the Golden Rule – do unto others as you’d have them do unto you. The Masters of Wisdom and their helpers constantly seek to alleviate the burden of suffering in the world and guide us forward on the path of spiritual evolution, but only with the reservoir of karma already there for this manvantara (cycle of activity): – unless we add to it. By living the golden rule our example will influence others as a spiritual strength and a guidance, leading us a real step on the path towards to the Masters of Wisdom”. (18)


James Long  also said:  “There is a link between us, the Masters, and those we try to, in turn, influence. We do so by thinking of our other fellow person, before we think of ourselves – the Masters are very close to us, as we do our job and fulfil our responsibility we need to have no worries about what they will provide. They are right there. All we have to do is to take our steps in their direction, and they will come to us”. (19)


And lastly, Theosophy has been described as: “humility, obedience and submissive receptivity, it starts where Nature itself ends. it is taught by God. As growth starts from within…Divinity is within everything”. (20)




  • Roza and Margarita Riaikkenen, The Laws of Life, Glossary, on p. 337.
  • Don Shepherd’s article in Theosophy Downunder,
  • Sanskrit Keys to the Wisdom Religion, p. 68.
  • HPB, Theosophical Glossary, pp. 23-24), & Voice of the Silence, pp. 51-2 & 89.

(5) HPB, Collected Writings, Vol. XII, p.710.

(6) Voice of the Silence, p.50.

(7) HPB, Inner Group Teachings, p.17.

(8) Voice of the Silence, p.51.

(9) Sanskrit Keys to the Wisdom Religion”, p.126.

(10) Don’s definition.

(11) Quote from Swami Sivananda, in google.

(12) Vreede, F., The Essentials of Living Hindu Philosophy), London, Oxford University Press, 1958 PP. 28-29.

(13) HPB Collected Writings Vol.XII, pp. 624, 672 & 297.

(14) (ibid)

(15) Encylcopaedic Theosophical Glossary, from Google, internet.

(16) Ecclesiastes, Holy Bible, Chapter 12,verses 6-7.

(17) Ecclesiastes, Holy Bible, Ch.12, verses 6-7.

(18) Andrew Rooke, “A Reservoir of Spiritual Force”, Theosophy Downunder,  No. 95, Aug 2008, p.2.

(19) The Report of the Leader’s Tour in Europe, April-June, `951, Part 1, Holland, pp.67,69, & 70.

(20) Vas, Nivard L., quoting Antoine Faivre, in his Theosophy, Imagination and Tradition, p.37 of  his review of The Western Esoteric Tradition, by N. Goodrick-Clarke, Oxford University Press, 2008.