The Great Invocation
The beauty and the strength of this Invocation lie in its simplicity, and in its expression of certain central truths – the truth of the existence of a basic Intelligence to Whom we vaguely give the name of God; the truth that behind all outer seeming, the motivating power of the universe is Love; the truth that a great Individuality, called the coming one, came to earth and embodied that love so that we could understand; the truth that both love and intelligence are effects of what is called the Will of God; and finally the self-evident truth that only through humanity itself can the divine Plan work out.
This entire Invocation refers to that impending, overshadowing and revelatory storehouse of energy, the immediate cause of all events on earth which indicate the emergence of that which is new and better; these events demonstrate the moving onward of the human consciousness into greater light. The usual invocative appeal has previously been selfish in nature and temporary in its formulation. People have prayed for themselves; they have invoked divine help for those they love; they have given a material interpretation to their basic needs. This Invocation is a world prayer; it has no personal appeal or temporal invocative urge; it expresses humanity’s need and pierces through all the difficulties, doubts and questionings straight to the Mind and the Heart of the One in Whom we live and move and have our being – the One Who will stay with us “until the last weary pilgrim has found his way home”.
The Great Invocation is a universal prayer which was given to Alice A. Bailey through Master Djwhal Khul as an instrument to help the Divine Plan fulfill on earth. Regular practice of this prayer is also believed to be a great act of service to humanity.
The importance of this invocation is to the extent that Master Djwhal Khul calls on people of all nationalities to recite this prayer “aloud, thus making a volume of sound of real potency, and to say it with all the power of their wills behind it. It is the invocation of the “will to good” that is the objective of the Forces who can aid at this time. This realization is of paramount importance.” Alice Bailey
The philosophy is that through invocation and meditation, divine energies can be released and brought into activity to spiritualize and strengthen the troubled world. This means that people, if united and focused, have the power to affect world events and the Great Invocation in this case is a simple, yet powerful invocation which if scientifically applied, can be one of the great liberating forces within humanity.
The invocation has been originally telepathically given to Alice Bailey in two parts or stanzas.
The first stanza of the Great Invocation was revealed by Alice Bailey in 1936, prior to the World War II, which according to her created immediate success and was fully responded by good and well-meaning people whose focus is predominantly astral and aspirational, and whose aim is peace and quiet which is needed to provide the “area of consciousness” where aspiration can flourish, physical and emotional comfort can be attained and the recognition of the mystical vision can become possible.
The first stanza:
“Let the Forces of Light bring illumination to mankind.
Let the Spirit of Peace be spread abroad.
May Men of goodwill everywhere meet in a spirit of cooperation.
May forgiveness on the part of all men be the keynote at this time.
Let power attend the efforts of the Great Ones. So let it be, and help us to do our part.”
The first stanza in this way provided a platform for the second stanza to be revealed which was designed for the more advanced disciples to help manifest the divine plan on earth and to bring good-will and the will-to-do-good.
The second stanza was given later, during the war in 1940 and was intended to be a test and a “decision point in a time of crisis.”
The second stanza:
“Let the Lords of Liberation issue forth.
Let them bring succor to the sons of men.
Let the Rider from the Secret Place come forth, and coming, save.
Come forth, O Mighty One.
Let the souls of men awaken to the Light,
and may they stand with massed intent.
Let the fiat of the Lord go forth:
The end of woe has come!
Come forth, O Mighty One.
The hour of service of the saving force has now arrived.
Let it be spread abroad, O Mighty One.
Let Light and Love and Power and Death,
fulfill the purpose of the Coming One.
The WILL to save is here.
The LOVE to carry forth the work is widely spread abroad.
The ACTIVE AID of all who know the truth is also here.
Come forth, O Mighty One, and blend these three.
Construct a great defending wall.
The rule of evil NOW must end.”
The second stanza was primary intended for the use of the disciples who not only are mystics but also have made some progress in following the path of occults. It means for those who are mentally focused in their attitude, who have recognized the higher way and are ready for something “closer and more real.”
Since the application of the first and second stanzas of the Great Invocation is limited to certain group of people, they were revealed separately and at different times. The first part was basically designed for “emotional and idealistic” people who ‘have a part to play in focusing the mass fluid aspiration and their responsibility is to the general public.’ The second part on the other hand was given for the use of “trained thinkers” who are recognized by the “will-to-do-good” (which according to Alice Bailey is more important than the will-to-peace) whose role is to ‘have a function to carry out in evoking hierarchical response in reply to the aspiration of the first group.’ In other words, the second group’s role is to focus this aspiration on the mental plane and create a thought-form containing the objective which will create the “call” and may reach the ears of the “Lords of Liberation.” Alice Bailey
As concluded from the above statement, both parts of the invocation are important since they are designed to work on the different levels of human consciousness and as Alice Bailey states in her book, “the blended invocation and the united call from the different levels of the human consciousness will bring a mighty appeal to bear upon the hidden Centers of the Saving Force.” Alice Bailey
Later in 1945, just before the end of World War II, the last update of the Great Invocation was given that is now translated into over 70 languages and is practiced by millions of people as a prayer and meditation.
The Last update of Great Invocation:
“From the point of Light within the mind of God,
let light stream forth into the minds of men.
Let Light descend on Earth.
From the point of Love within the Heart of God,
let love stream forth into the hearts of men.
May “World Teacher”* return to Earth.
From the Centre where the Will of God is known,
let purpose guide the little wills of men –
The purpose which the Masters know and serve.
From the Centre which we call the race of men,
let the Plan of Love and Light workout,
and may it seal the door where evil dwells.
Let Light and Love and Power restore the Plan on Earth.”
*Many religions believe in a World Teacher, a “World Teacher”, knowing him under such names as the Christ, the Lord Maitreya, the Imam Mahdi, the Kalki Avatar and the Bodhisattva. These terms are sometimes used in versions of the Great Invocation for people of specific faiths.
Explanation of the last update of Great Invocation
The First Stanza of Great Invocation
“From the point of Light within the Mind of God
Let light stream forth into the minds of men.
Let Light descend on Earth.”
We have reference to the Mind of God as a focal point for divine light. This refers to the soul of all things. The term soul with its major attribute of enlightenment includes the human soul and that consummating point of light which we regard as the “overshadowing” soul of humanity. That soul brings light and spreads enlightenment. It is necessary always to remember that light is active energy.
When we invoke the Mind of God and say: “Let light stream forth into the minds of men, let Light descend on Earth”, we are voicing one of the great needs of humanity and – if invocation and prayer mean anything at all – the answer is certain and sure. The fact that people in every age and every situation have felt the urge to appeal for help to the unseen Spiritual Centre, is a sure sign that such a center exists. Invocation is as old as humanity itself.
We are told that human beings “love darkness rather than light because their deeds are evil”. Nevertheless, one of the great emerging beauties of the present time is that light is being thrown into every dark place, and there is nothing hidden which shall not be revealed. People recognize the present darkness and misery and consequently welcome light. The illumination of human minds so that they can see things as they are, can apprehend right motives and the way to bring about right human relations, is now a major need. In the light which enlightenment brings, we shall eventually see light, and the day will come when thousands of human beings and countless groups will be able to say with Hermes and with “World Teacher”: “I am (or we are) the light of the world.”
The Second Stanza of Great Invocation
“From the point of Love within the Heart of God
Let love stream forth into the hearts of men.
May “World Teacher” return to Earth.”
The Heart of God is involved and the focal point of love considered. This “heart” of the manifested world is the spiritual Hierarchy – that great transmitting agency of love to every form in the divine manifestation.
Love is an energy which must reach the hearts of men and women, and which must permeate humanity with the quality of loving-understanding; that is what is expressed when love and intelligence are brought together.
When disciples are working under the recognition of the “World Teacher”, there will then come the time when He can again move among human beings in a public manner; He can be publicly recognized and thus do His work on the outer levels of living as well as upon the inner. “World Teacher” said when bidding farewell to His disciples:
“Lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the age.”
When “World Teacher” comes, there will be a flowering in great activity of His type of consciousness; He will let loose into the human kingdom the potency and the distinctive energy of intuitive love. The results of the distribution of this energy of love will be two-fold:
First, the active energy of loving-understanding will mobilize a tremendous reaction against the potency of hate. To hate, to be separate, and to be exclusive will come to be regarded as the only sin, for it will be recognized that all the sins as listed, and now regarded as wrong, only stem from hate or from its product, the anti-social consciousness. Second, countless men and women in every land will form themselves into groups for the promotion of goodwill and for the production of right human relations. So great will be their numbers that from being a small and relatively unimportant minority, they will be the largest and most influential force in the world.
The Third Stanza of Great Invocation
“From the center where the Will of God is known
Let purpose guide the little wills of men –
The purpose which the Masters know and serve.”
We find a prayer that the human will can be brought into conformity with the divine will, even though that may not be understood. There is indication in these three lines that humanity itself cannot as yet grasp the purpose of God, that aspect of the divine will which seeks immediate expression on earth. But surely, as the purpose of the Will of God seeks to influence human will, it is expressed in human terms as goodwill, as living determination or as a fixed intention to bring about right human relations. The divine will, as it is essentially, remains the great mystery. Even “World Teacher” Himself struggled with the problem of the divine will, and addressed Himself to the Father at the moment when He first realized the extent and the complexity of His mission as world savior. He then cried aloud: “Father, not my will but Thine be done.” Those words marked the relinquishing of the means through which He had been attempting to salvage humanity; it indicated to Him what might at that time have appeared to be an apparent failure and that His mission was not accomplished. For nearly two thousand years, He has waited to bring that mission into fruition. He cannot proceed with His assigned mission without reciprocal action by humanity.
This Invocation is peculiarly and essentially “World Teacher’s” Own Mantra and its “sound has gone forth” to the entire world through the medium of His enunciation of it and through its use by the spiritual Hierarchy. Now its words must go out throughout the entire world by means of its enunciation by people everywhere and its meaning must be expressed by humanity in due time. Then “World Teacher” can again “return to earth” and “see of the travail of His soul and be satisfied”.
The Fourth Stanza of Great Invocation
“From the center which we call the race of men
Let the Plan of Love and Light work out
And may it seal the door where evil dwells.”
Having invoked the three aspects or potencies of Mind, Love and Will, we have indication of the anchoring of all these powers in humanity itself, in “the center which we call the race of men”. Here, and here alone, can all the three divine qualities – in time and space – express themselves and find fulfillment; here and here alone can love be truly born, intelligence correctly function, and the Will of God demonstrate its effective will-to-good. By humanity, alone and unaided (except by the divine spirit in every human being), can the “door where evil dwells” be sealed.
The final line of the fourth stanza is perhaps in need of explanation.
This is a symbolic way of expressing the idea of rendering evil purposes both inactive and ineffectual. There is no particular location where evil dwells; in the Book of Revelations, the New Testament speaks of evil and of the destruction of the devil and of the rendering of Satan impotent.
The “door where evil dwells” is kept open by humanity through its selfish desires, its hatreds and its separateness, by its greed and its racial and national barriers, its low personal ambitions and its love of power and cruelty. As goodwill and light stream forth into minds and hearts, these evil qualities and these directed energies which keep the door of evil open will give place to a longing for right human relations, to a determination to create a better and more peaceful world and to a world-wide expression of the will-to-good. As these qualities supersede the old and undesirable ones, the door where evil dwells will symbolically slowly close through the sheer weight of public opinion and through right human desire. Nothing can possibly stop it.
Thus the original Plan will be restored on earth. Simultaneously, the door into the world of spiritual reality will open before humanity and the door where evil dwells will be closed. Thus through the “center which we call the race of men”, the Plan of Love and Light works out and strikes the death blow of evil, selfishness and separateness, sealing it into the tomb of death forever; thus also the purpose of the Creator of all things will be fulfilled.
“Let Light and Love and Power restore the Plan on Earth.”
It is apparent that the first three stanzas or verses invoke, call for, or appeal to, the three aspects of divine life which are universally recognized – the mind of God, the love of God and the will or purpose of God; the fourth stanza points out the relation of humanity to these three energies of intelligence, love and will, and humankind’s deep responsibility to implement the spread of love and light on earth in order to restore the Plan. This Plan calls humanity to the expression of Love and challenges men and women to “let their light shine”. Then comes the final solemn demand that this “Plan of Love and Light”, working through the human kingdom, may “seal the door where evil dwells”.
The final line then contains the idea of restoration, indicating the keynote for the future, and that the day will come when God’s original idea and His initial intention will no longer be frustrated by human freewill and evil, pure materialism and selfishness;
the divine purpose will then, through the changed hearts and goals of humanity, be achieved.