STUDENTS of metaphysical theosophy are sometimes called to task for being too ‘intellectual.’ There may be an important lesson to learn from this critique, on both sides.
Some prefer the force of thought to hammer out truth, dismissing feelings and emotions as emanating from the ‘lower nature.’
Yet from the other side, as W. Q. Judge wrote in Ch. 7 The Ocean of Theosophy, “intellect alone is cold, heartless and selfish.” The effect is dramatized in scientific studies of neurological correlates of responses in the physical brain.
Materialistic, intellectual data are stored in the brain, but such data do not stimulate areas such as the pineal gland — known by occultists as “the seat of the soul”— the center that hosts spiritual impulses such as feelings of compassion.
We are spiritual beings at our core, but our behaviors on this physical plane — just like the actions of rider and horse — are solely governed by how we have entrained our psychic and physical instruments to respond to either higher or lower impulses.
“There are persons,” H. P. Blavatsky explains in an occult article, “who never think with the higher faculties of their minds at all.”
“This is why it is so very difficult for a materialist — the metaphysical portion of whose brain is almost atrophied — to raise himself,” she says,
“Or for one who is naturally spiritually-minded to descend to the level of the matter-of-fact vulgar thought. Optimism and pessimism depend on it also in a great measure.”