LOOKING beyond our relatively short physical lives on Earth, Theosophy teaches that the soul and spirit alone are eternal.
Further, the perennial wisdom tradition declares we don’t just ‘have’ a soul, we are Souls. (The Ocean of Theosophy, Chapter One)
Yet, there are many human beings who live physically to a ripe old age, and according to Wikipedia, the United Nations estimated in 2012 there were 316,600 living centenarians worldwide.
Methuselah is mentioned in the Bible as living 969 years. “But I have never heard of mortal man, layman, or Adept,” H. P. Blavatsky wrote in The Key to Theosophy, “who could live even half the years allotted to Methuselah.”
“Some Adepts do exceed, by a good deal, what you would call the ordinary age,” she said, “yet there is nothing miraculous in it, and very few of them care to live very long.” Mme. Blavatsky refers here only to the outward earthly physical body.
But the Spiritual and Astral Bodies that wise adepts have learned to occupy and control — achieving what is termed self-conscious immortality — have no expiration date.
Such Masters as Buddha remain fully alive while occupying their spiritual form (or Bodhisattvic Body). They are called Nirmanakayas, and remain invisible to the uninitiated. Such enlightened masters live a “secret life” of service to humanity.
One who selects the Path of Renunciation is described as a Bodhisattva, a “Buddha of Compassion.” The term literally means “one whose essence is wisdom” or “one of enlightened essence.”
The Buddhist sage Aryasangha refers to Gautama Buddha as “the Supreme Nirmanakaya.” H. P. Blavatsky echoes his assertion, writing in a footnote: “The Esoteric School teaches that Gautama Buddha, with several of his Arhats, is such a Nirmânakâya, higher than whom, on account of the great renunciation and sacrifice for mankind, there is none known.”
(The Voice of the Silence, fn 34)
Gautama, the Buddha, after reaching the goal of enlightenment, refused its rewards and remained on earth as a Teacher-Reformer, it is explained, and esoteric tradition teaches that
“he remains in the world, invisibly watching over and protecting mankind.”
And the Buddha is not alone. What is called a living, spiritual “Wall of Protection“ still exists established to protect humanity, built by the “accumulated efforts of long generations of Yogis, Saints, and Adepts …
“… those Buddhas of Compassion who have woven for themselves glorious bodies in which they remain invisibly in the world, contributing towards man’s salvation.”
The “Guardian Wall” may also be called the “Wall of Protection.”
Those Masters are likened to ‘stones’ which go to form this spiritual Wall: “Built by the hands of many Masters of Compassion, raised by their tortures, by their blood cemented, it shields mankind, since man is man, protecting it from further and far greater misery and sorrow.”
The “accumulated efforts of long generations of Yogis, Saints, and Adepts, especially of the Nirmanakayas, have created, so to say, a wall of protection around mankind, which wall shields mankind invisibly from still worse evils.” (Voice, fn 28)
These advanced beings assist suffering humans “by influencing them to follow the Good Law and to tread the Path of Righteousness.” Silently they impress the invisible atmosphere of our earth with their Ideation, thus keeping the balance on the side of right.
(The Voice of the Silence, fn 34)