The Word Foundation

The dial of the eternal clock turns with each Round and Race: but that in which it turns remains the same. Rounds and Races, Ages, Worlds and Systems, great and small, are measured by and express their nature in their position on the dial.

—The Zodiac.



Vol. 4 OCTOBER, 1906. No. 1

Copyright, 1906, by H. W. PERCIVAL.



THE most valuable and remarkable book on occultism, in all its phases, is the “Secret Doctrine,” by Madame Blavatsky. The teachings unfolded in that work have affected the thought of the world. So much so have these teachings changed and are still changing the tone of the world’s literature that those who have never heard of the “Secret Doctrine,” its author, or even of the Theosophical Society, and who might object to the work from sectarian prejudices, have nevertheless accepted its teachings as voiced by those who have garnered from its pages. The “Secret Doctrine” is the gold mine from which every Theosophist gathered his capital to begin his speculations, no matter to what branch, sect or faction of the Society he may belong.

One of the doctrines put forth in the “Secret Doctrine” is the sevenfold classification of the universe and man. This sevenfold system has been advanced under different guises by many modern societies, though many people who accept the system are ignorant of its source in our times. This sevenfold system has puzzled those who have studied the teachings known as those of “The Seven Rounds,” in the “Secret Doctrine,” and their application and relation to man. The zodiac furnishes a key for the better understanding of this sevenfold system to those who have or may read the “Secret Doctrine.” To those who have not yet seen it we should say that the “Secret Doctrine” is a work of two royal octavo volumes, the first volume containing 740 pages and the second volume 842 pages. This great work consists of a few stanzas, subdivided into slokas, on which the body of the work is a commentary. Seven stanzas form the text of the first volume, which is called “Cosmogenesis,” and twelve stanzas serve as text in the second volume, which is known as “Anthropogenesis”—the generation of our universe or world, and the generation of man.

The stanzas of the first volume of the “Secret Doctrine” describe the seven signs of the zodiac as we know it in its present position from aries (♈︎) to libra (♎︎). The second volume deals only with the Fourth Round, cancer (♋︎).

We wish now to give a brief outline of this sevenfold system as it is to be understood by the zodiac, and how this applies to the genesis and development of man.

According to the “Secret Doctrine,” we are now in the fifth sub-race of the fifth root-race of the Fourth Round. This means that we are in the Round for the development of mind as a principle, in the universe and man, and that the dominant sign of the zodiac is cancer (♋︎). It will therefore be necessary to outline the development of the three previous Rounds, symbolized by the signs aries (♈︎), taurus (♉︎), gemini (♊︎), and described in the “Secret Doctrine” in the stanzas I., II., and III., respectively.

First Round. Figure 20 shows the sign aries (♈︎) at the beginning of manifestation of the First Round; libra (♎︎) at the end of the plane of manifestation. The line aries-libra (♈︎–♎︎) shows the plane and limit of manifestation in that Round. The arc or line aries-cancer (♈︎–♋︎) shows the involution of the principle of aries (♈︎) and its lowest point of involution. The arc or line cancer-libra (♋︎–♎︎) shows the beginning of the evolution and its development to the original plane of its manifestation. As soon as the sign libra (♎︎) is reached the Round is completed and the sign aries (♈︎) ascends one sign. The sign aries (♈︎) is the beginning and key of the First Round. The principle to be developed is absoluteness, all-inclusiveness, in which all things are to be conscious and to be developed consciously. The sign cancer (♋︎) is the lowest point reached and the pivot of the Round. The sign libra (♎︎) is the completion or end of the Round. The arc or line aries-cancer (♈︎–♋︎) is the conscious development of the Round. The densest body developed in this Round is a breath body, the nascent mind, cancer (♋︎). Libra (♎︎), the end, gives a duality in the development of the breath body.

Second Round. Figure 21 shows the sign taurus (♉︎) at the beginning of manifestation in the Second Round. Leo (♌︎) is the lowest point of involution and the beginning of evolution, which ends with scorpio (♏︎). The sign taurus (♉︎) is motion, the spirit. It is the principle and key of the Round. The arc or line taurus-leo (♉︎–♌︎) is the involution of the conscious spirit, and the lowest body is a life-body in leo (♌︎). The arc or line leo-scorpio (♌︎–♏︎) is the evolution of that life body, which is complete or ends in the sign scorpio (♏︎), desire. This is natural desire, not evil, such as is the desire of our Fourth Round when mixed with mind.

Third Round. As shown in Figure 22, in the Third Round manifestation begins with the sign gemini (♊︎), buddhi or substance, which is the principle to be developed in this Round. It ends with the sign sagittary (♐︎), thought. Virgo (♍︎) is the lowest point and at which the densest body of the Round is produced. The body so developed is the principle of design or form, astral body. Sagittary (♐︎) is thought, the action of the mind. It ends the Third Round.

♈︎ ♉︎ ♊︎ ♋︎ ♌︎ ♍︎ ♎︎
Figure 20.
♈︎ ♉︎ ♊︎ ♋︎ ♌︎ ♍︎ ♎︎ ♏︎
Figure 21.
♈︎ ♉︎ ♊︎ ♋︎ ♌︎ ♍︎ ♎︎ ♏︎ ♐︎
Figure 22.
♈︎ ♉︎ ♊︎ ♋︎ ♌︎ ♍︎ ♎︎ ♏︎ ♐︎ ♑︎
Figure 23.

Fourth Round. Figure 23 shows the Fourth Round. The sign cancer (♋︎) begins manifestation in the Fourth Round. The principle to be developed is the breath or nascent mind, which is the key, the conscious function, and the limit of the manifestation of the Round. The arc or line of involution is from cancer (♋︎) to libra (♎︎). Libra (♎︎), the physical body of sex, is the pivot of the Round, and the arc or line libra-capricorn (♎︎–♑︎) is the evolution of the Round.

The following remarks are applicable to all Rounds: The triangle, or lower half of the circle, in each Round shows the beginning, middle and end of the Round. As each Round is completed and its dominant principle developed, the sign of the principle ascends above the line of manifestation. Thus the zodiac shifts one sign with each Round. The beginning of the triangle shows the nascent sign of the Round; the lowest point of the triangle describes the quality of the body or the instrument used for the development of the dominant principle in that Round; while the end of the triangle shows the principle as completed in the Round, which principle lends its quality and character to the next following Round, e. g., at the end of the First Round, aries (♈︎), the sign libra (♎︎) was developed and gave the dual quality to the conscious aura or atmosphere. This duality influenced the following Round and the entities of that Round, the principle of motion, spirit. In the Second Round the principle of taurus (♉︎) was developed in scorpio (♏︎), which latter sign influenced the following Round by desire; this is desire before it is associated with mind. At the beginning of the Third Round substance was completed by thought, which caused the differentiation and end. And thought influenced the entire following, our Fourth Round.

Each Round is completed by the passing of the dominant principle through the seven signs of the lower half of the circle. Each sign corresponds to a race, and also symbolizes a sub-race.

The first race of the Fourth Round was mahatic, of the universal mind, and as cancer (♋︎) was the sign which developed a breath body in the First Round, so now it begins the Round as a breath, which represents the first race of the Fourth Round. The second race, leo (♌︎), of the Fourth Round was pranic, life, which was the body developed in the Second Round. The third race of the Fourth Round was astral, the design or form corresponding to virgo (♍︎), the body developed in the Third Round. The fourth race of the Fourth Round was kama-manasic, desire-mind, which was the Atlantean or sex body, libra (♎︎). The fifth race of the Fourth Round is the Aryan, which has the desire principle, scorpio (♏︎), which will be the lowest body of the Fifth Round. The sixth race, sagittary (♐︎), is the one now forming, whose lowest principle will be lower manasic, thought. The seventh race, capricorn (♑︎), will be a race of what are looked upon now as superior beings beings in whom the principle of mind is developed to the highest degree possible in this our Fourth Round or great period of manifestation.

As the Rounds are developed by involution and evolution through the signs in the lower half of the circle, so also are the races and their subdivisions brought into existence, flower and disappear, according to the signs of the zodiac.

♈︎ ♉︎ ♊︎ ♋︎ ♌︎ ♍︎ ♎︎ ♏︎ ♐︎ ♑︎ ♒︎
Figure 24.
♈︎ ♉︎ ♊︎ ♋︎ ♌︎ ♍︎ ♎︎ ♏︎ ♐︎ ♑︎ ♒︎ ♓︎
Figure 25.

As indicated by the zodiac, the development of the remaining three Rounds will be as follows:

Fifth Round. Figure 24 shows the sign leo (♌︎), life, to be the beginning of manifestation in the Fifth Round, and the sign of aquarius (♒︎), soul, to be the end of the Round. The lowest point and densest body developed will be scorpio (♏︎), desire, a desire body which will be used by the entities of the Fifth Round as the physical is now used by us, but more intelligently. The arc or line of involution will be leo-scorpio (♌︎–♏︎), and the line of evolution scorpio-aquarius (♏︎–♒︎). The line or plane of its highest conscious action will be leo-aquarius (♌︎–♒︎), spiritual life.

Sixth Round. In Figure 25 we see the sign virgo (♍︎) to be the beginning of the manifestation in the Sixth Round. Sagittary is the lowest point of involution and the beginning of evolution, and the sign pisces (♓︎) to be the end of that evolution and of the Round. The lowest body used by entities of the Sixth Round would be a thought body.

♈︎ ♉︎ ♊︎ ♋︎ ♌︎ ♍︎ ♎︎ ♏︎ ♐︎ ♑︎ ♒︎ ♓︎
Figure 26.

Seventh Round. Figure 26 shows the beginning and end of the Seventh Round as the completion of all the periods in the series of manifestation. The sign libra (♎︎), sex, which ended the First Round, now begins the Seventh, and the sign aries (♈︎), absoluteness, the conscious sphere, which began the First Round, now ends and completes the Seventh the beginning and the end. The sign cancer (♋︎), breath, which was the lowest body in the First Round, and the first or beginning of our present Fourth Round, is, in the Seventh Round, the highest; whereas the sign capricorn (♑︎), individuality, which is the last and the highest development in this our Fourth Round, will in that last Seventh Round be the lowest. All of which would indicate how advanced the future Rounds must be as compared with our present development.