This is one of those areas of occult and esoteric knowledge that has confused many as can be evidenced by the extent of disinformation to be found on the Internet. I seek, as always, to bring clarification and easier comprehensibility to the matter, which has impact upon every single aspect of a human being's life as well as every level of that one's existence. It is no small matter as you will discover, and the subject will be taught in the Mystery Schools of Initiation in the New Golden Age to come. I'm afraid that I may only chip away at the outer edges of this golden nugget from The Council of Shamballa because of its extensive nature. Where do I start?
1. Let's start at the very Beginning. Before any and all of manifestation, there is and there was and there will always be The Unmanifest Creator Source of All, The Supreme Unmanifest God of The Cosmos, if you will. At some point and for reasons that will never be known except to The Highest Creative Source, That One created a Primary Extension of Itself that we may call The Supreme Manifest God of The Cosmos (English words have their limitations), Intelligent Infinity in Manifestation. From this Infinite Intelligence Source, then, all of the uncountable (perhaps infinite in number) Universes were created and came into being by way of The Infinite Manifest One extending forth portions and aspects of Its Infinite Mind to become The Creator Gods of each of those innumerable Universes.
In other words, The Creator God of each and every one of the Universes has its origination point within The Infinite Mind of The Supreme Manifest God (They are The Mind-Born Sons of Brahma). Each of Those, in turn, created their own unique Universe, our's being but one among that infinitude. Are you still with me? The Unmanifest God beget The Manifest God beget The Universal Gods beget the Universes. The Cosmos is comprised of all the Universes.
2. Whew, now that that's out of the way, we can narrow it down to our own "little" Universe. At the very outset of this particular Universe, our Creator God sent forth from Itself 3 Primary Extensions of Itself, and these have come to be known (by humans) as The 3 Major Aspects of The Triune Godhead. The christian religions recognize Them as The Trinity, and the hindu religions call Them Brahma, Vishnu, and Shiva. Occult teachings of Ascended Masters refer to Them as The 3 Major Divine Aspects. Each of these 3 Aspects, arisen from The Consciousness of our God, is not only an Aspect-Fragment of God and a Creator Being in Itself, but Each is a Focus for a certain Divine Quality of our Creator God, and the Energy or Force radiated by Each of these 3 Aspects throughout the Universe at all Levels is called a Ray (in human terminology).
3. I never did like the word, Ray, as used to describe the Universal Forces. It seems to trivialize Them and make Them sound like a burst of energy from "ray guns" or the "death rays" of 1950's science fiction, but the word is pervasive throughout occult literature, and since Master Djwhal Khul uses it, I'll hesitantly acquiesce.
First Aspect -- Shiva -- The Will and The Power of God
Second Aspect -- Vishnu -- The Love of God, called Love-Wisdom
Third Aspect -- Brahma -- The Mind of God, Intelligence in Action
The Qualified & Representative Energy that each of these Creator Aspects emanates is called the Ray of that Aspect. The Ray is a type of Energy with a certain quality that the Force exhibits. The Ray Energy becomes a Force once transmuted and transmitted through some Agency (e.g. a Council of 7 or 12 Light Beings) on its way down to lower Levels of Existence in this Playground of Creation.
4. But how do we get 7 Rays if there are only 3 Primary Divisions of The Triune Godhead? The Third Aspect (Brahma) divided Itself and projected forth out of Its Consciousness 4 Extensions that are called The 4 Attributes of God, and the Universal Energy Streams which proceed from Them are called Rays 4 through 7, the 3 Rays of Aspect and the 4 Rays of Attribute thus comprising the 7 Rays. Our God beget 3 Creator Aspects of Itself, and Its Third Aspect beget 4 Creator Extensions of Itself. The Divine Triplicity became a Divine Septenary, producing 7 Streams of Force (and a Septenary Universe - see "A Septenary Universe").
5. These 7 Incomprehensibly Vast Beings Who were born out of The Mind of our God may be likened unto Minor Gods Themselves, because They may more directly be considered The 7 Creators of our 7-fold Universe. All that is in existence at every Level of Being in our Universe has been created by These Seven. The septenary constitution of this Universe comes as a result of The 7 Principles before The Throne of God, The 3 Major Aspects and The 4 Minor Attributes of God. I'll go even further and say that ALL beings and ALL things in the Universe are an extension or fragment from The Consciousness of one or other of these 7 Minor Gods Who, in turn, come from The Triune Godhead, which is sourced in our Creator God of this Universe (a little redundancy to help in understanding). One creates Three; Three create Seven; The Seven create the totality of the manifest Universe.
6. Now, The Forces, Emanations, or Rays from These Seven are stepped down or transformed many, many times before reaching such a low, dense level as physicality on Planet Earth. There are 7 Special Beings at every dimensional, sub-dimensional, and Major Plane (Density) of existence Who specialize in transmuting through Their Consciousness one of those 7 Rays so that It will be more accessible, more potent, and better configured for the Level immediately below and all who exist on that Level. Then They are passed to the next lower Level by 7 Great Ones and so on and so on. Each of these 7 Transformers at each of the Levels is a Specialist in that particular Divine Energy that has originated from The Universal Source.
For our corner of the galaxy that we find ourselves in, the 7 Rays are passed through the 7 Stars of the Constellation that we call Ursa Major (the Great Bear). Those 7 "Stars" must be considered as enormous Gestalts of Consciousness and Stellar Logoi of unimaginable grandeur whose very lowest physical state of beingness is observed by telescopes as a brilliant focus of light that we call a star. For our particular solar system, The Originating Source of the 7 Rays is Ursa Major (one Ray per "Star"), and before passing to our Solar Logos, each of the 7 Rays is transmitted through 3 Constellations of our Zodiacal Wheel before it enters the ring-pass-not of our solar system and the Prismatic Focus of our Solar Logos. For example, the First Ray of Divine Will is transmitted and modulated collectively through The Stellar Beings in Aries, Leo, and Capricorn before reaching The Logos of this system of planets (Ursa Major to 3 Constellations to our so-called Sun).
7. Our solar system is dominated by the Second Ray. The Love of God is the predominant Force throughout this entire system of planets. Another way of putting it is that our Solar Logos (The Creator of this planetary system) is a Second Ray Solar Logos and could be considered as a greatly stepped-down Version or Aspect of The Second Aspect of God in The Trinity. The Second Ray permeates this solar system and all who are in it. God may rightly be equated with Love as far as we are concerned. The thing to understand, though, is that all of the 7 Rays and their energies that we experience here are sub-Rays of the Great Second Ray coming from our Solar Logos. Think of the 7 Rays from Ursa Major passing through the 2nd Ray Prism of the Solar Logos and being transformed by Divine Love.
All of our particular 7 Rays have branched off from, been conditioned by, and have their origin in the Second Ray of the Universe, the Emanation of The Second Aspect of The Godhead, and consequently all our 7 Rays are tinged with and strengthened by The Love of God. Our 7 subsidiary Rays of the Great Second Ray are brought through The Solar Logos and 7 Great Ones in The Solar Hierarchy and from there are directed to The Planetary Logoi of the 7 Sacred Planets of this solar system (Earth is not one). Each Logos of a Sacred Planet is an Evolutionary Focus for one of the 7 Rays of our solar system. From thence these 7 Rays come to The Logos of Planet Earth and The Consciousness of Sanat Kumara (Lord of The World). The Council of Shamballa, which includes Sanat Kumara and The 6 Kumaras, passes the Forces to The Chohans (or Lords) of the 7 Rays for distribution to the evolving Kingdoms of Nature on Earth (including the Human) in accordance with the Purpose of our Planetary Logos and the Plan of Sanat Kumara (refer to "Who Is Sanat Kumara?").
8. Necessarily, Sanat Kumara and His Higher Self, The Planetary Logos, are Second Ray in Their Beingness and the Highest Exponents and Examples of Love on this planet. All appearances to the contrary notwithstanding (and those appearances are ubiquitous), this planet will eventually be becoming a planet of Christ Love. Let me give the essential energies of the 7 sub Rays of the Universal Second Ray as they impact and manifest on Earth in our present time. Remember, all of these energies are governed by Love which is expressing Itself perfectly through them:
First Ray -- Power, Will, & Drive (refer to "The First Ray")
Second Ray -- Love & Wisdom (refer to "The Second Ray")
Third Ray -- Intelligent Activity & Adaptability (refer to "The Third Ray")
Fourth Ray -- Harmony, Beauty, Artistry, Unity (refer to "The Fourth Ray")
Fifth Ray -- Concrete Knowledge, Scientific Exactitude, & Healing Arts (refer to "The Fifth Ray")
Sixth Ray -- Devotion & Abstract Idealism (refer to "The Sixth Ray")
Seventh Ray -- Ceremonial Order, Ritual, Law, White Magic, & Synthesis (refer to "The Seventh Ray")
9. The Chohans (Lords) of the 7 Rays in Earth's Spiritual Hierarchy, each of Whom is The Heart Flame of one of the 7 Divisions of The Hierarchy, are The Ones Who dynamically transform the essence of the Ray Energies through Their Consciousness for the benefit and progress of all on Earth. I've listed Them elsewhere (see "Who Are The Spiritual Hierarchy?") but will include Them here for the interested student.
First Ray -- El Morya Khan
Second Ray -- Kuthumi Lal Singh
Third Ray -- Serapis Bey
Fourth Ray -- Master Paul (not the Venetian)
Fifth Ray -- Hilarion
Sixth Ray -- Sananda (Jesus)
Seventh Ray -- Master Rakoczi (Saint Germain)
10. Each roughly two thousand year Zodiacal Age is dominated by one or other of the 7 Rays for our system. The Piscean Age (on its way out) was dominated by the 6th Ray, which has been demonstrated by the fanatical devotion to religious precepts, institutions, and beliefs. Fanaticism would not be an overstatement in describing the seemingly uncountable wars, skirmishes, and conflicts arising out of religious fervor during the last 2,000 years. The fervor and dedication toward city-state, country, king, or military leader could also be taken as 6th Ray in origin, likewise the intense devotion of the christian monks, nuns, and priests of christendom and the followers of Mohammed as they spread their religion. The wars in the so-called Holy Land (continuing to this day) were and are a direct consequence of this energy and a perfect example of its misuse. This is the energy that promotes sacrifice for a person or ideal and martyrdom to a cause. Unswerving devotion to the Guru in India is another example.
11. Jesus-Sananda is The One Who served as The Overseer and Modifier of the Devotional Ray for the Piscean Age. Those energies will soon be leaving us. The Seventh Ray will be the dominating influence of the New Age in Aquarius as overseen by The One we have come to call Saint Germain. It's energies will bring about the synthesis of matter and Spirit, of lower self and Higher Self, of union with the Divine. As a consequence of its impact, there will be a return to ceremonies and rituals and organized gatherings that have little to do with religion. The Way of the White Magician will arise out of the Path of Discipleship to one of The Masters. The use of symbols, sacred words and mantrams, sounds with power, colors, and visualizations accompanied by the intense projection of the will for the greater good of the all will become a way of life, and the Violet Flame of the 7th Ray will come commonly into use as a great purification mechanism.
12. Each incarnate individuality on this planet is directly influenced by five of the Rays not one. Many people think that they are "on" a certain Ray and that that is the end of the story, however it is more than that. Each of the following have a dominant Ray (and hence certain qualified energy) of influence: the physical, the emotional, the mental body, the personality, and the Soul. The Ray of the Soul remains the same for all of its incarnations in each Round (of 7 Rounds) on Earth, but the Rays of the incarnate personality and its 3-fold lower expression are unique to each incarnation and dependent upon its goals. The Ray of The Monad (Higher Self of the Soul) is always one of the 3 Rays of Aspect, and It remains on that one Line for the entirety of its long sojourn of return to The Universal Creator. By extrapolation, all of The Monads in the Universe could be considered Consciousness Fragments of one or other of The 3 Major Aspects of The Triune Godhead, exhaled at The Beginning and inhaled at The End of The Great Manvantara.
13. These 7 Rays do not have "colours" as all too many would like to think, as though the 7 colors of the prism from red to violet are representative of and match the 7 Rays from One to Seven. These Divine Energies that have originated from The Aspects & Attributes of God, even though stepped down many times to reach this Level, are immeasurably beyond the narrow spectrum of light that registers on the rods and cones of the eye retina as color. The colors, as we know them, are so far down the universal electro-magnetic spectrum from the 7 Rays that there can hardly be any relationship except a symbolic one, and that is how The Masters relate them.
14. The solar system that we experience is not the only one that has existed or will exist in this tiny outpost on the periphery of our enormous galaxy. What I mean to say is that the current solar system containing Earth is the second in a series of 3 solar systems to occupy this space. The first one (as created by The 1st Solar Logos) was a 3rd Ray solar system designed for the perfecting of the Active Intelligence Aspect of God. The 2nd solar system (ours), as mentioned, has a 2nd Ray Solar Logos and will achieve the perfection of The Love of God through Wisdom. The 3rd in the series will be created by a 1st Ray Solar Logos for the perfecting, throughout its sentient races, of The Will of God by using that Force intelligently and lovingly as a divine destructive and creative tool. Old forms are destroyed to make way for the new forms as is known to Shiva The Destroyer (1st Aspect of The Creator).
15. Here are some facts about the 7 Rays with respect to humans: The Soul Ray may be any one of The 7 and remains the same throughout all incarnations in any one Round but varies from Round to Round (Earth goes through 7 Rounds of developement, each Round having 7 Root Races of Man). The Causal Body of the Soul vibrates in resonance with that Ray. The Soul experiences all 7 of The Rays in its various and widely-varied incarnate personalities, thus expressing and developing all qualities to be built into the Causal Body. If the Soul Ray is one of the Minor Rays of Attribute (4 through 7), it will be absorbed into and strengthen the Major Ray of The Monad at the 4th Initiation when the Soul is no longer needed as a Divine Intermediary (see "The Soul").
Each one of the 7 Rays works primarily through one of the 7 Major Chakras in the aetheric body. If the Soul and Personality Rays of two individuals are the same (a rare occurrence), it results in a close friendship, a successful marriage, and an unbreakable bond. The further the aspirant is along the evolutionary path, the more that the Soul Ray dominates the Personality Ray in order to govern the trend of expression.
16. The Ray type of the personality and its 3-fold lower self (physical, astral, mental) will help to mold the physical appearance and body type, will control the emotional nature, and will determine the mental predisposition and aptitude of mind. The Ray type is also the governing factor for the strengths, weaknesses, and capacities of the incarnate individual as well as for the field of endeavor on Earth and the chosen method of human inter-relations.
17. Positive Ray Qualities or Virtues of Each of the Rays:
First Ray: courage, leadership, fearlessness, singleness of purpose, determination, strength, force of will, ruling ability.
Second Ray: unconditional love, serenity, patience, selflessness, tactfulness, empathy, intuitiveness, truthfulness.
Third Ray: intellectuality, mental advancement, form creation, abstract thinking, self-sufficiency, caution, organizational ability, philosophical.
Fourth Ray: artistically-inclined, musical, steadfastness, harmoniousness, creative imagination, acting ability, beauty-seeking, conflict resolution.
Fifth Ray: common sense, accuracy, independence, practicality, logical thinking, scientific aptitude, impartial justice, exhaustive analyzation, concrete thinking.
Sixth Ray: devotion, loyalty, reverence, tenderness, idealism, desirousness, impracticality, fanaticism, self-sacrifice.
Seventh Ray: organizational skill, meticulousness, self-reliance, formality, ritualistic, rigidity to change, orderliness, synthesis, incantation and white magic.
18. Ray Examples:
I will list a few well-known personalities who have walked the Earth in our past and who were on the Path of Initiation, and I'll indicate the level or degree of Initiation by the time of that one's "death". I primarily want to demonstrate the type of energetic influence on the personality itself by giving the Personality Ray for that particular lifetime. Keep in mind that the Soul and the 3 bodies of manifestation (physical, astral, mental) each have their own Ray of influence. The Major Initiations are from One to Five (see "The Only Path On Earth") after which physical incarnation is no more. The fraction after the Initiation Level indicates the progress made toward the next Major Initiation. When the Soul and the personality (or the mind) are governed by the same Ray Energy and the incarnate individual is fairly well along the Initiatory Path, the personality exemplifies the qualities and purposes of its Soul (or Higher Self) and the conditioning energy of that Soul. All examples in each category have a Soul/Source on that particular Ray plus a personality or mind on the same Ray. Ten are given in each category.
Alexander of Macedonia (1.5)
Roman Emperor Augustus (1.75)
Helena P. Blavatsky (4.0)
Charlemagne of France (2.2)
Indira Gandhi of India (2.0)
Pope Gregory I (2.0)
Paul von Hindenburg (1.7)
Abraham Lincoln (3.3)
Saint Peter the Apostle (3.5)
Persian Emperor Xerxes (1.7)
Florence Nightingale (1.6)
Jiddhu Krishnamurti (4.0)
Martin Luther King Jr. (2.0)
Saint John the Beloved Apostle (3.0)
Sant Kabir of India (4.2)
Manly Palmer Hall (1.6)
Mohandas K. Gandhi (2.0)
Albert Einstein (2.2)
Edgar Cayce (1.7)
Luther Burbank (1.6)
Antonio Vivaldi (2.2)
Bertrand Russell (1.7)
French Cardinal Richelieu (1.7)
Isaac Newton (2.2)
Pierre Simon Laplace (2.0)
Marie Curie (2.0)
Jacques Cousteau (1.6)
Marcus Tullius Cicero (1.7)
Andrew Carnegie (1.6)
Ludwig van Beethoven (3.1)
Hector Berlioz (2.3)
Frederic Chopin (2.0)
Anthony van Dyck (2.0)
Hermann Hesse (2.1)
Akira Kurosawa (1.7)
Gustav Mahler (1.9)
Felix Mendelssohn (2.4)
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (3.0)
Piotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky (1.8)
Fifth Ray (Relatively few Souls are on the 5th Ray. The following individuals had a 5th Ray mind or personality or both.):
British Scientist Kelvin Spencer (2.0)
French Philosopher Rene' Descartes (2.3)
American Scientist Benjamin Franklin (2.5)
Russian Physicist Andrei Sakharov (2.0)
Scottish Inventor James Watt (1.7)
French Chemist Antoine Lavoisier (1.7)
German Physicist Wilhelm von Rontgen (1.7)
German Philosopher Karl Marx (2.2)
Italian Inventor Guglielmo Marconi (2.0)
Greek Physician Hippocrates (2.0)
Methodist Founder John Wesley (1.6)
Saint Teresa of Avila (3.1)
Sikh Founder Guru Nanak (3.0)
Mother Mary (2.2)
Saint Thomas Aquinas (2.0)
Saint Augustine (2.3)
Meister Eckhart (2.2)
Saint Luke the Apostle (2.4)
Bahai Founder Baha'u'llah (3.0)
Saint Catherine of Alexandria (2.6)
Seventh Ray (Listed are people who had a 7th Ray mind or personality or both. Few there are of 7th Ray Souls.):
German Physicist Max Planck (2.2)
British Musician John Lennon (1.6)
Leonardo da Vinci (4.4)
Russian Writer Fyodor Dostoevsky (2.0)
French Painter Nicolas Poussin (2.4)
American Engineer Henry Ford (1.7)
French Chemist Louis Pasteur (2.2)
Russian Painter Nicholas Roerich (2.1)
German Archeologist Heinrich Schliemann (1.7)
Theosophical Founder Henry S. Olcott (2.2)
19. Lest I try the patience of those readers who were expecting a more concise synthesis of the formidable topic of the 7 Rays, I will bring it to a close with a few concluding remarks.
Before reaching our solar system and Solar Logos, the 7 Rays are modulated through 7 Great Beings (seen physically as Stars) in the Constellation Ursa Major.
Our Solar Logos focalizes only the Second Ray of Love/Wisdom and radiates that Divine Energy in a 7-fold manner as 7 sub-Rays of the Second Universal Ray to the entirety of the solar system. The quality of each of our 7 Rays is imbued with God's Love because our 7 Rays are all branches of the Cosmic 2nd Ray.
Each person incarnate is strongly influenced by the energies of 5 Rays (chosen pre-incarnatively by the Soul), one each for the Soul, personality, mental, emotional, and physical bodies. For two-thirds of the evolutionary journey the Personality Ray dominates, after which the Soul Ray begins to dominate.
Nation-states are also governed by a Personality Ray and a Soul Ray, the former demonstrating in selfish nationalistic desires, and the latter expressing the highest ideals and goals of the nation.
In a cyclical manner each Zodiacal Age is governed by a different Ray, which offers its own unique lessons and catalyzes the upsurge and downfall of cultures, civilizations, religions, attitudes, and movements.
The Piscean Age is the 6th Ray Age of devotion to a cause, fanaticism to an ideal, patriotism to a nationalistic agenda, and separatism out of exclusivity in thought. Dogmas and narrowness of view placed limitations on science, religion, and philosophy, however individuality was nurtured along with the abstract ideals of love and brotherhood. Since 1625 the influence of the 6th Ray has been slowly declining, while since 1675 the 7th Ray has slowly been coming in more strongly.
As mentioned, the Aquarian Age will be the 7th Ray Age, and synthesis will be the key word. Separatism will become fusion; exclusivity becomes inclusivity; and individuality becomes group consciousness. The conservative, reactionary die-hards clinging to the time-worn ways of Pisces will give way to the progressive, practical, unifying ways of Aquarius, and The Lord Saint Germain will distribute the forces of the 7th Ray such that the world will come to know what it really means to be one.
Humanity will form a unified field of consciousness; national boundaries will be dissolved, and The Avatar of the Aquarian Age (Lord Kuthumi) will grace the planet with His Presence along with many of The High Initiates and Adepts of The Brotherhood of Light. After the 1st Ray has been turned loose to destroy the old forms, the old systems, the old continents, and the old ways, the 7th Ray will usher in a New World at a higher turn of the spiral (see "The Seventh Ray").