Where Shall We Seek Truth, and How Shall We Know It?

LETTER NO. 39 - February, 1914

At the close of last month's lesson we saw that Siegfried, the truth seeker, had arrived at the end of his quest. He had found the truth. Meditating upon the subject it occurred to me as profitable to devote this letter to a straightforward answer to the question: "Where shall we seek truth, and how shall we KNOW without doubt when we have found it"

To be absolutely certain about this matter is of very great importance. For many who accidentally find their was into the Desire World, such as mediums for instance, are enmeshed in illusion and hallucination because of inability to know truth. Moreover, the Elder Brothers of the Rosicrucian Order give probationers a definite scientific teaching on this point; and in order to guard against the danger spoken of above, they make an actual test before admitting any one to discipleship. All must come up to a certain standard in this matter. It may, of course, surprise you that this discussion is not reserved for probationers or disciples, but the Rosicrucian Fellowship does not believe in secrecy or mystery. All who wish may qualify for any degree; and this qualification is not a matter of FORM but of living the life.

In regard to the first part of the question then, "Where shall we seek truth?" There is only one answer--WITHIN. It is absolutely a matter of moral development; and the promise of Christ that IF WE LIVE THE LIFE WE SHALL KNOW THE DOCTRINE is true in the most literal sense. You will never find truth by studying my own or any other books. So long as you run after outside teachers, myself or any one else, you are simply wasting energy. Books and teachers may arouse your interest, and urge you to live the life, but only in so far as you make their precepts a part of your inner self are you really seeking in the right direction. The Elder Brother--whom I, perhaps mistakenly, speak of as Teacher--has never taught me directly since the first short period when that which is embodied in the Cosmo was given. And in the last year I have learned not to ask question for I have noticed that whenever I did so he simply gave me a hint as to how I, myself, might obtain the desired information. Now, instead of asking questions, I ask for directions as to how I may solve a problem. So you see that it is by using our own faculties, which may be compared to he talents spoken of by Christ, that we get the information of most value to ourselves.

The second part of the question, "How may we know the truth?" is best answered by referring the student to the evening exercise given in the Lecture No. 11, SPIRITUAL SIGHT AND INSIGHT. It may be performed by any one regardless of whether he or she is a probationer of the Rosicrucian Fellowship or not. The teacher said at the time of giving it that if it were possible to prevail upon the most depraved person in the world to perform this exercise faithfully for six months, he would be permanently reformed; and those who are faithful have found that it sharpens all mental faculties, particularly the memory. Besides, by this impartial judgment of oneself night after night, one learns to discern truth from error in a degree not attainable in any other way. Not all our students may feel inclined to take up probationership, and we never urge any one to do anything in the Western Wisdom School. But if you really want to know the truth I can honestly recommend this method. It develops an inner faculty and no matter what statement is made to you, once you have developed this, you will know at once whether it rings true or the reverse.