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Devas and Men

A compilation of Theosophical Studies on the Angelic Kingdom.
Southern Centre of Theosphy. Robe S.A. Australia.
Theosophical Publishing House, Adyar. India.

Book Review

Understanding Devas (essay)

Devas and Men book is a massive work. The introduction to this 386 page tome (undoubtly written after all the research had been done) starts with the following proposition...

The idea that Man is a Deva is intriguing and immense. Its intriguing because much of the information about the idea is has been veiled with confusion and complications. And immense because it says much about humankind's place in the total cosmos.

A further quote from the introduction...

"... it is hard to realise that we are both human AND devic in the most profound aspects of our humanity. We are indeed human and deva and the two inseperatable parts are needed to make a whole person - one part totally unable to function without the other."

From the introduction, page 9...

An idea that may seem strange is that humankind is continually touching, sensing and feeling the invisible light around himself. In nature, music and in art - where ever there is beauty and joy - are places where humankind touches the innate life that is not only inside itself but in everything from the smallest flower to the furthest star.

From Chapter 1, page 2...

It is useful for us to understand Nature Spirits, for two reasons. One, because of the influence they exert upon us. And two, because to study them teaches us that humankind does not exist on the world alone and that our human point of view is neither the only, or indeed, the most important.

In studying Nature Spirits we find beings radically dissimilar to us - without sex, without fear and ignorant of what is meant by the struggle for existence...

From page 19...

Nature Spirits, like all etheric beings, have no need to eat. The body of a fairy absorbs the nourishment it needs, easily and without any bother, from the ether which surrounds it. An exchange of particles is constantly taking place. Those that have been drained of vitality are cast off and those that are full of vitality are drawn in to replace the drained particles.

Continuing, from page 20...

The Nature Spirits are like a wreath of mist, so that they cannot be torn apart or injured, and neither heat or cold effects them. Body pain, comes to them only from unpleasant emanations but they can move quickly to avoid these. So they are entirely free from the problems of fear, which is such a serious part of human and animal bodily life.

Most Nature Spirits dislike and avoid people. To them we are ravaging demons, destroying and spoiling everything we touch. People wantonly kill, often with awful tortures, all the beautiful creatures they love to watch. Humans cut down trees, trample grass, pluck flowers - only to throw them aside - and replace lovely wild nature with hideous bricks and mortar. Chemicals replace the smell of flowers, ill regulated passions fill the air with - to them - disgusting and disturbing astral currents. For them to live near an average human is to live near a hurricane that has just blown over a cesspool.

From page 21...

On occasion Nature Spirits have been provoked into direct retaliation and have shown distinct malice. This is rare, their usual method of repealing intruders is to play tricks upon them. Nature Spirits can take in impish delight in misleading people and having them see things that are not there. Peasant gossip is full of such stories.

From page 25...

The Nature Spirit elementals that are attracted to slaughter houses and bars have an unpleasant appearance. There are Nature Spirits of a low order who enjoy the course vibrations of anger and hate and throw themselves into these sorts of astral streams. By doing this they stir up the problems and give them fresh life. This, in turn, strengthens the effects of undesirable thoughts and feelings.

From page 56...

The appetites of these elementals can be unlimited. They thrive on anger, jealously and irritability and insist on generating constant surges of feelings. Their business is to try to get these results continually. Our business, as beings with a higher aspect, is to control them except when they serve the needs of our spiritual aspects. Everything depends on our will power.

From Chapter 1, page 5...

Question: Is there a connection between Nature Spirits and the world of ghosts and spooks?

Answer: Yes, both belong to the interior psychic world which has a far greater population than our own. There live our dead ancestors and a vast population of beings who never lived here at all. Fairies of all kinds and degrees of intelligence and also vast majestic beings with great intelligence that are better called "Devas", beings of shinning light.

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