Extract from The Esoteric Apprentice
Questions from Enquirers and Co-workers
Would you say the Twelve experiment was a success?
It depends how we determine success. Is humanity a success? In the esoteric sphere success is very difficult to define as many things happen that we do not perceive, hidden energies, setbacks and achievements. Who is to say what is successful and what is not? The Twelves Group was taking part in an experiment. Not just an outer group experiment but an inner plane experiment to determine parameters for the future.
If we concentrate, just for a minute on the outer plane work, yes, we achieved limited success, within the timeframe, but not total success in my opinion. We were just a group of disciples and aspirants seeking to serve and test the limits (if there are any) of group synthesis whilst engaging with ashramic/hierarchal forces hitherto we had not known. These forces impact the group and the individual. My individual reflection is that the experiment was partially successful but when it was realised that only limited success could be achieved the energy was withdrawn from the group and two of the core three triangle members withdrew their individual forces and moved on to inner plane working. It is obvious that these two great workers are now assisting the new group manifestation now called simply Twelves.
I would think preparing this account of the Twelves Group was at least one of those reasons as it was a work unfinished. I was unprepared to attempt it earlier (and the timing was not right) and, maybe, a little tardy but it is important to get this out there prior to the Major Hierarchal Impact in 2025. This coming date has tremendous significance for humanity and the externalisation: “This period started in the year 1825 and will continue until the end of this century. The unfoldment of the Christ life—as a result of the presence and activities of the second divine aspect of love—will result in the ending of economic fear, and the “house of bread” will become the “house of plenty.” Bread—as the symbol of material human need—will eventually be controlled by a vast group of initiates of the first initiation—by those whose lives are beginning to be controlled by the Christ consciousness, which is the consciousness of responsibility and service.
These initiates exist in their thousands today; they will be present in their millions by the time the year 2025 arrives.
All this reorientation and unfoldment will be the result of the activity of the seventh ray and of the impact of its radiation upon humanity.”
Alice A. Bailey, The Rays and The Initiations
I have expanded this theme considerably in Chapters 10, 11 and 12
Did the experience change you?
Not one of the participants was unaffected. It was impossible not to be affected when actively engaged with ashramic forces. It is disturbing too. Each of us was protected, not only by the Devic Presence and the protective circle around the group formation, but through our ability to interact with the ashramic forces.
Some were more advanced than others and it was always understood that we, as individuals, could only serve to our capacity and, ongoing that was one of the problems we encountered: how to get, and maintain, twelve disciplined and focussed disciples who were committed to working virtually between gatherings and prepared to travel and be physically present.
As explained earlier this was not a virtual group we need to be there physically and that put a strain on participants and the group as a whole. We were all changed and to this day feel that impact.
I have lost touch with most of the group but did get a chance to chat with many in the closing days and for a few years afterwards. The response was always the same, “Ah Twelves! That experience is etched into my soul” and “Momentous and I often remember the power, love and the healing, etc.”
Those were typical comments. Strangely, though, we all felt the need to go our separate ways. It was almost, “Why be together” if not working? We came together, we served together, and we parted as comrades in the work to live out our remaining lives. But we would never forget.
Now, of course, several of those ‘originals’ are back working with the new Twelves alongside many wonderful new souls who have taken up the challenge.
Was it worth doing?
A disciple’s effort, sincerely undertaken is never wasted. We cannot hope to see all the ramifications of our work. Like the alarm clock that is set, left unattended then goes off unexpectedly, what we do today, and what we did yesterday, will affect our futures. On a higher turn of the spiral it is the same with esoteric work. We lay foundations for future work to be undertaken. Group work is not easy. Most esotericists I know are strident individuals, all working for Hierarchy in some capacity or another, but to then come into a group work is difficult for all of us. In my case I work much better as an individual than as part of a group, but it is in group work that the externalisation depends. Not brilliant individuals working alone, although great work can be achieved this way too, but group work is the future and through group synthesis and empowerment will change come. The Hierarchy is, after all, a group. The whole is greater than the sum of its parts thus building the vortex of light in strict group formation adds all those individuals’ powers together then ramps that up 12-fold, then adds the inner groups power (ashram) increasing it to 144 exponentially.
Why write this book?
The Twelves Group ran, in one form or another, for 20 years and at the dissipation we all went our separate ways, but the experience of the experiment had to be consolidated and documented for that phase to be truly over. As we approach 2025 and the Great Convocation of Hierarchy it is important to get on record the group’s experience:
“Thus, a great and new movement is proceeding, and a tremendously increased interplay and interaction is taking place. This will go on until A.D. 2025. During the years intervening between now and then very great changes will be seen taking place, and at the great General Assembly of the Hierarchy—held as usual every century—in 2025 the date in all probability will be set for the first stage of the externalisation of the Hierarchy. The present cycle (from now until that date) is called technically “The Stage of the Forerunner”. It is preparatory in nature, testing in its methods, and intended to be revelatory in its techniques and results. You can see therefore that Chohans, Masters, initiates, world disciples, disciples and aspirants affiliated with the Hierarchy are all at this time passing through a cycle of great activity.”
Alice A. Bailey, The Externalisation of the Hierarchy It is quite possible that a group, in the future, will come to pick up this work of ‘Twelves’. Much has been ingrained on the etheric, astral and mental by our group but it is also important to solidify, as best I can, the group endeavour in the hope that it might be useful to others at some future stage. Many of us hope for a major event in 2025, perhaps the reappearance of Maitreya, in homine, or a great outpouring of Love Wisdom the effects of which could spark, over hundreds of years, the externalisation. A renewed effort by some original and many new coworkers are rebooting Twelves and the expansion of the triangles network.
Would you change anything?
I am not a great believer in the phase, “no regrets” as I think none of us are perfect as we all make mistakes and misjudgements. For anyone to say, “I would change nothing” sounds arrogant to me. When I reflect on my life there are many things I would improve, things I would not say and kindnesses I would render more unequivocally.
In my group work the same applies. I took Robert and Peter for granted and wish I had not. I was very much absorbed in my studies and career and wish I was less so. I was ambitious and ruthless, on occasion, and wish it were not so.
We all develop and grow and as the Dalai Lama says:
“Time passes unhindered. When we make mistakes, we cannot turn the clock back and try again. All we can do is use the present well”.
Would I change the actual Twelves?
No, I think we rarefied and improved the process over many years and achieved just about as much as we could have with the tools we had. If we could have proceeded there was the future work of ‘Ray Twelves’ (working with one of the Major Rays through the formation of Twelves–a work we never attempted nor were prepared for). Also, the work of multiple Twelves leading to the 12 x 12 one hundred and forty-four formation which, we were informed, might have group initiatory potential. Again, we were way in advance of our time and work with Rays or in 144 formation were way beyond our reach, but we knew of the potential, and this potential I share here.
Who was the Chinaman?
A couple of people have asked me this question and the truth is I don’t know. I can only relate the fact that he arrived at Robert’s house (where we ran the group) and told us that he had come from the ashram. Robert asked him how he found the address (as we used a postal box number). He said he had seen a star over the house and just followed it. I cannot say to you I am 100% sure of who he was as I simply don’t know. I relate the true story and leave you to ponder upon it. In my younger days I might have wistfully claimed this and that, but I resist these days and prefer to err on the side of caution. He came, an emissary he claimed, and he didn’t say much but looked upon us knowingly, stayed about an hour and was on his way never to be seen again leaving an energy imprint that survives until this day.
Where are the members today?
As described earlier, the group’s energy dissipated and was withdrawn. The fellowship and service ethic of the group had been so strong that it was rather an anti-climax when we wound down. I know of a few members that are also on my Blavatsky, Bailey, Roerich (BBR) group on Facebook, but most have gone their own ways and are no doubt working in some capacity with other groups.
Will you re-start the Twelves Group?
As it says in Ecclesiastes there is “a time to plant, and a time to pluck up what is planted” and the Twelves Group will not be restarted in the format it once was. I think it highly likely that another group, almost certainly under a different name, will take up the reigns again but who knows when as it depends on ashramic support. For real work connected to the externalisation it has to be sponsored by the Hierarchy and receive that ashramic support and energy. Will this happen before 2025 or 2125? I don’t know and my task, now, is to close this chapter in my life and detail for others the events as they happened. I am quite certain that groups of disciples will work in Twelve formation at some stage in the future for twelve is THE cosmic number that represents the heavens, reflects the divine and the New Jerusalem. It is the number of magic and transcendence. If a group were formed who wanted to explore this work I would gladly advise, and participate, but it is just as likely that this will not happen in my lifetime, but you never know…
Do you have any ashramic contact or contact with The Initiate these days?
I had no contact with The Initiate nor with the ashram for many years although the link was always there. At the dissipation I lost all contact and only recently has it somewhat been restored. This was a shock at the time but time has taught that it was entirely natural as I thought my role was over. During those years I had undertaken a function, a role, and once that particular work was finished there was no need for contact. It must be stressed that real ashramic/Hierarchical contact is only ever made for a PURPOSE which is far beyond the individual’s incarnation of personal karma. Withdrawing that contact is in no way any form of punishment; it is simply a withdrawal of focus much as anyone who drives a car then steps out after the journey in anyway does that in retribution. The car’s job is simply completed.
I do not seek, nor do I ponder upon that contact. I accept it and move on. I hope, and trust, that I will have the opportunity to serve again and I will do so without emotion in service to the One. As of now (July 2019) we are rebuilding and expanding that original work.
Have you ever had any physical contact with the ashram?
Speculation regarding Chinamen aside there was no physical contact with the ashram. There was one incidence of help that was physical. It involved a manifestation of a bookmark with information upon it that answered a question that Robert and I had been, frankly, stressing over for some time. I shall recount it here for completeness:
I had received information, during a deep meditation via higher telepathy that a Master was working in the City of London through a certain building. This building was on a ley-line of great power and was being utilised as part of this Master’s work. I received an impression which building that was and was asked to go there at a certain date and time. I was a little unsure and, I admit, I doubted the veracity of the information as it had not come via The Initiate whose energy I had worked with for so long and I knew his signature. I was connecting with the inner ashram and the information came to go to the building. I met with Robert, we discussed this and agreed that we would go as asked but I ruminated and shared my concern with Robert that although I was 100% sure the fact that it was an ashramic source I could not determine if the building I was shown was the actual building that we should visit.
We happened to be standing in my house at the time, near to the bookshelf, where I intuitively picked up the book How A World Teacher Comes by Annie Besant. Out fell an old bookmark from the early 1900s with a picture of the very building on it. Confirmation.
We had been given an Invocation that was specific for London and asked to attend this place so off we went. We managed to get inside the building, we undertook a meditation with ashramic link-up then recited the London Invocation. I would like to report that we met the London Master but we did not, alas, though we were told that he was physically there. But apart from going up to hundreds of people asking them, “Are you the London Master”? It was futile–unless he presented himself (which he would only do so for a specific purpose not just to assuage our curiosity) then we had undertaken our task.
What about physical group work versus virtual?
There was an amazing leap forward after DK undertook his work with Alice Bailey and Lucis Trust was formed. The work of Triangles, started in 1937, has had a major beneficial impact on the world and been a conduit for the Hierarchy.
My contention is that this work was always planned to be expanded into sixes, nines and twelves. It is an extension, not a replacement, of that network. A hint of that is in the Triangles logo even now used by the Lucis Trust (a twelve-pointed star within another and within a third).
This work is absent or virtual. Lucis Trust does not encourage linkage between students who study with them. My opinion is that this loss of fellowship harms the work instead of enhancing it. Having said that, I deeply respect the work they have done and continue to do. This network is 1000s strong and people may join more than one triangle if they wish to do so. It not only is a phenomenal work in itself, as it pours the energy of Goodwill into the planet’s etheric body and uses the Great Invocation daily, it also acts in a preparatory way for more powerful and focussed work in the future.
The work of Twelves was totally in person. We used triangles daily in a very similar way and only added a link to the Twelves Group as a focus in preparation for the group work. Twelves could not be undertaken virtually as it had a specific ritual-based focus. It would be like an orchestra playing a symphony without being able to see the conductor nor hear the other players. It might produce some noise, and some sort of tune, but not quite what the composer had it mind. We have now developed Distant Twelves and have overcome some of those issues – it seems that this second stage, Implementation, has added distant, virtual work to the obvious advantages of physical work that we developed earlier.
What do you see as the future of group work?
The work of the New Group of World Servers (NGWS) has been described in detail in the works of Alice Bailey with the Master Djwhal Khul and needs no expansion here. DK states:
“…working disciples everywhere when they meet each other, will know at once that their work is identical, and will advise with each other as to where cooperation and supplementary endeavour may be possible”
Alice A. Bailey, A Treatise on White Magic
I believe that group work will develop in a more conscious, physical formation and include useful work in Threes, Sixes and Nines and Twelves is the ultimate, logical, natural template.
What was to be the future work of Twelves?
There were three distinct potentials;
One intention was for the work to develop along the lines of the Rays. There would be three types of Twelves: First Ray, Second Ray and Third Ray. We do not know much about what that would entail in the field but we know it involved the work of thoughtform destruction, clearing of energy lines, building of lighted thoughtforms, healing and lastly creating energetic space for other work to be undertaken.
Secondly, as to participants, there was a clear intention to develop disciples to work within the group in a more focussed way and, eventually, according to Ray type. This would include a Twelve made up of those on the Second Ray (for example) thus giving clarity and focus for that particular work. Thirdly, multiples of Twelves would add force and power in the same way as individuals do in group formation. Starting with Three Twelves, Six, Nine then progressing to Twelve. This last multiple aggregating into 144 which, we were told, would be the ultimate Force-for-Good. We can only speculate the marvellous and wonderful things that would occur.
It must be remembered that the science of Twelves is not new it has just been hidden through the years. In ancient Lemuria and Atlantis much work in group formation was undertaken and I think it highly likely that work in Groups of Twelve would have been known about and practiced as a key, or gateway, to universal energies.
The Initiate often talked about sleepers who, if the Note be well struck, would awaken to the group work.
Why did the Twelves Group dissipate?
Much as the Hierarchy withdrew Their energy from Krishnamurti (leading many to speculate that it was Krishnamurti who withdrew from the work when, in fact, it was the other way round – please see the Addendum), they also withdrew Their energy from the Theosophical Society and may have done the same with other organisations well known today, it was the same process. It has to be emphasized that Masters only engage with disciples or aspirants for specific purposes then when that is achieved, they often withdraw, and the energy dissipates. Probably no organisation that has received Hierarchal sponsorship retains that longer term. The Twelves Group was leading edge, achieved the formation of the basic foundations for future group work in Twelves, and when that was accomplished and it was observed that the group could not further that clarion call any more than it already had Robert, then Peter, were withdrawn to other work within the ashram and the withdrawal of ashramic energy proceeded over a couple of years and the group ceased to be in that from, it has now resurrected and strengthened. This is no guarantee of success, of course, but the times are urgent.
Were there any side effects of Twelves work?
Yes, working with the group had its usual tensions, sometimes personality led and other times just with practical issues. However, the biggest impact, or side effect was in the lives of participants. Many of us found it difficult just to return to our normal lives after a formation. Therefore the slow grounding following a Gathering was essential.
Many of us felt that our lives were pretty meaningless after the Work in the early days. Later we all learnt the Art of Balance and got better at placing the Twelves work in one box and our daily lives in another. There were some strained relationships with significant others who were not in attendance and, perhaps, had no interest in the group’s work. It was an issue in my marriage and I am now divorced (in the 1980s) never to marry again. The life of an Esoteric Apprentice is a life alone although there are rare instances where this is not the case. I just find it easier and continue the work today.
Did you run into obstacles other than people?
Most Theosophical/Esoteric organisations become, after the first flush of youth and after the dissipation I talked about previously, stale and defensive of their way. This is often a hindrance to all new initiatives. We have the traditional Theosophists who cannot abide the Bailey adherents and we have the Agni Yoga organisation at loggerheads with Lucis Trust, so these three branches are in disunity.
Thank goodness most esotericists I know reject all of that noise and love and respect all three. However, each has fallen into the same trap themselves and only support those organisations that adhere to their values and teachings.
The Twelves Group was made up of members from each of these three branches but if the original organisations were more open then, obviously, a great cooperation would ensue. This not being the case, it is an obstacle. Also, the group operated in the days before the internet was truly established so communications were by letter, newsletters and the like through the postal system.
Were you always the Focaliser?
Up until the dissipation I did all the focalising, but it was planned for others to do so. The only reason it was I is that it was simply convenient, and I knew the process so well. Because this was the case there were others who had actually undertaken more Twelves than I had. This is not a requirement for future work and was only for the reason outlined. As long as a Focaliser had understood, and practiced the formation studiously, there is no reason why anyone could not undertake that role. In fact, for future work, it was thought that the role might be removed as it would be unnecessary if there were twelve highly trained and focussed participants.
From what did the Devic Presence and the Ashram protect you?
The Forces of Darkness are always seeking to disrupt those who work with Light. We were no different and used protection techniques to seal the formation as we worked. We were attacked, on occasion, but the onslaught was minimised and of nuisance value only. In fact I had more of this type of problem outside of the group than I ever had within it.
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The Circle of Protection
The second thing is the securing of the energy within the formation. The protection was to keep the bad guys out and the good stuff in and it worked. It is the contention of this book that this work is expansive and dynamic, and the Twelves is the next logical step in group work. Even if you are of a mind to disregard the experiences outlined in this book, I think there is true merit in considering the expansive nature of working in Twelve Formation. 2025 is fast approaching and we need all the tools we can muster to assist in breaking down old thoughtforms and clearing away channels for light to pour through. This is not an and/or scenario. This is in addition to the many aspects of group work, particularly of the Triangle Goodwill network, that is currently underway. Utilising the training and diligence that has been established on the inner planes, the beautiful thought-forms that have been created through that focussed effort.
Within this vast panorama of light work there is a place for focussed, laser-like work piercing the old and redundant thought-forms of yesteryear and opening channels of light, then through conscious attention, linking to those on the inner planes who seek to help humanity in this hour of crisis. As the switch was in off position there were never any consequences, with regards protection, in the daily lives of participants.
Can you explain a little more about The Vortex that was formed in the middle of the Twelve?
I think the best way to answer this is to quote DK as he describes, perfectly, what the funnel is and how it works: “The first postulate to remember in considering the collective use of form in meditation is that those forms, in employing sound and rhythm, should open up a funnel of communication between those taking part in them and the intelligences or Powers they are seeking to approach. By means of this funnel which penetrates from the physical to the emotional or still higher to one or other of the mental levels. The Intelligences or powers are enabled to pour forth illuminating light or power of some kind or other into those who thus approach them. The funnel forms a channel whereby the contact can be made.
The whole process is purely scientific and is based on vibration and on a knowledge of dynamics. It is dependent upon the accurate formation, through occult knowledge, of a vacuum. The occult statement that “Nature abhors a vacuum” is entirely true. When through the correct intoning of certain sounds, this vacuum or empty funnel between the higher and lower is formed. Force pours into the funnel under the inevitable working of the law, and, via that funnel, reaches its objective.
Part of the power of the Hierarchy is based on their ability to do just this very thing. As evolution progresses, and the matter is more fully comprehended meditation groups will change from their present status, which is that of bands of earnest aspirants seeking illumination, to bands of workers constructively and intelligently working together for certain ends.
Another angle of the whole matter resolves itself into work in the world. Groups will apply themselves to the work of contacting certain types of logoic force, of passing it through the group funnel, and of sending it out through the world for certain constructive ends. This work is closely allied to that taken by the Nirmanakayas or the Distributors of Force, and will be largely under their direction, for They will be able to use these groups as focal points for Their activities.”
Alice A. Bailey, Letters on Occult Meditation p.193
As you can see, this is the very funnel that we formed and used during our Twelves work together. We illustrated ours like this:
The Funnel or Vortex
Minkowski’s work with space and time correlates for the esotericist in a very meaningful way as his diagram describing distance/space and a funnel or vortex and the concentrated event in the middle relates exactly to the event that takes place in the middle of the funnel described by DK and the vortex described by the Twelves Group and experienced in their work.
Will you, personally, work with Twelves again?
I undertook Twelves work, somewhat reluctantly at first, as a service activity many years ago. I led the group with Robert and Peter over many years as we developed the process. It was both a joy and a burden and to do it properly we immersed ourselves within it. We all gained huge insights into ashramic process and huge insights into our own natures. We grew with it. Starting from those early years full of expectation and glamour we battled through it all. Don’t forget, unwittingly, many in our own group encouraged some of those illusions and it took many years to get clarity. This is a long and arduous inner journey and I think I have attempted to do my part. This book is the last part of the jigsaw that I promised to fulfil to outline the background, process and outcomes. I hope that I have done that. I will not be leading any new group. That does not mean, however, that if such a serious group emerged that I would not assist in any way I can, including teaching the techniques required for successful Twelves, if asked. This is my commitment until it is time for me, too, to return home.
During the Twelves Group Gatherings did any of the participants sense, such as hear, see or smell, anything notable?
Yes, there were many experiences among the participants. Usually, the next day, we would sit in a circle and discuss and share our experiences of the Twelves the previous day.
We did not encourage this on the day of the Twelve as the intensity was so great that we all wanted to be silent.
As we sat we shared our perspectives and the core experience of intense energy, connection and love was the same for us all. Some saw light, some heard bells and some were overcome with a fragrance of such beauty that they could hardly talk about it. It must be remembered that we were breaching the worlds and that the effect, upon each of us, was profound yet differed slightly. The core experience never differed and is very difficult to put into words.
I liken it to a vast reservoir of love and energy descending through the funnel and out through the participants, who undertook the role of facilitators, or channels. This energy was far greater than anything any of us had, or have, experienced. It just flowed when the group switch was thrown open.
Many of us felt that we could fly into the vast colours above the group formation and keep on flying into the heart of the ashram. It was immersive.
Tell us a bit more about the Bell you heard whilst seventeen.
That Bell was really a wake up call in the deepest sense. It is impossible to accurately reproduce this ethereal sound here on the earth plane but, after extensive research, I have found the closest match is a bell on the 417 Hz frequency on the Solfeggio Scale. But I must stress this is not a perfect reproduction but is the closest I have found.
The Solfeggio Scale has 6 tones (that is 6 ‘outer tones’ and probably a reflected 6 ‘inner’ tones’ that undertake the deeper, healing work).
Each tone has a ‘quality’ and the 417 Hz is said to “facilitate change and allow any negative past to be healed and let go”. The scale was originally developed by a Monk around 991-1050 AD and was utilized for chants, etc.
As I have said, the tone is not exact but the quality of 417 Hz frequency fits the situation. I was seventeen and had come through an abysmal childhood and, naturally, I had been deeply scarred. It makes sense that the ashram would initiate a healing so that I could proceed forward to the Twelves work.
I should state here that the childhood experience would have been karmic, a hastening of karma if you like, so that I could be fit for the experiment ahead. And so, the Bell cleansed and healed, although I was completely unaware of the importance of this until very recently when writing this book. I had always thought that it was just an opening of the psychic centers, but its significance was far more profound than that and explains why it was ubiquitous for weeks then never heard of again. But… I have never forgotten its tone and it is true to say that it has followed me all of this life. This is a good place to mention that the Twelves Group also had a note or tone and our group OMs resonated in synergy even when we had imbalance in the formation. The older hands would carry and lift those less experienced and the result was synergy. This is another reason why we would break into the four triangles first, before the Twelves ritual, and get the note right between the three.
As described in Chapter 6 the formation came together in stages, 3, 6, 9, 12 and this raised the note of individuals and individual triangles utilising the OM as the synergistic tool.
“When the hearts of men as a whole are sufficiently open then will peace reign over all. Catch a flicker of that light from on high and reflect it.”
The Initiate Feb 1982