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The School of the White Brotherhood

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THE SCHOOL OF THE WHITE BROTHERHOOD

 

When Peter Deunov started to work for the uplifting of the religious spirit of the Bulgarian people, later continued in the Chain and in the School of the White Brotherhood, he put himself into the service of the angel Elohil. He created a spiritual path to the future Slavic culture, not only for the Bulgarians, but also for the Russians. The teaching will be carried to Russia and be applied there, he said.[40] In a wider sense it is given to people from all cultures of the world.

 

The School of the White Brotherhood was founded in Bulgaria, as Peter Deunov said, because the mountains of Bulgaria were ancient centres of initiation: “The oldest occult School (of the world) is situated within the Rila Mountains.” “From the Rila Massif comes down a mighty Divine Stream. Those who are close to the massif will naturally have good conditions for upliftment, because they are under a beneficial influence.”[41]

 

The (Great or Universal) White Brotherhood is not a human organisation. It is a Divine community of spiritual beings, led by Christ, serving humanity in its evolution. Among them are also human beings who have completed their evolution. This Heavenly Brotherhood (which Rudolf Steiner called the White Lodge) has branches on Earth, among them the School founded by Peter Deunov. Here people can study on different levels.

 

Comparable to the Schools of the Bogomils and French Cathars in the Middle Ages, which consisted of three groups (a circle of interested people, a circle of believers, and a circle of initiates), Peter Deunov brought together in the School of the White Brotherhood three groups of people: people with an interest in the teaching, people who studied it and tried to apply it in their lives, and a selected group of young people. For each of these groups he gave separate lectures.

 

The White Brotherhood has three great laws: Love God, love thy neighbour and seek perfection.[42] The main principles of the teaching are Love, Wisdom, Truth, Justice and Virtue. They are the five qualities man needs to develop in order to perfect himself. In observing them, according to Peter Deunov, he does the will of God. In the School, he developed a variety of methods of spiritual work. They can be summarized as: lectures, practise of the tasks and exercises given in the lectures, discussions with his disciples, songs, music, the circle dance of paneurhythmy, physical exercises, excursions into the mountains, summer camps in the mountains, communal life, prayer and meditation. After his death other methods appeared as well, such as reading circles and study groups.

 

A new form of communal life was created in the community of Izgrev (Sunrise), at that time outside Sofia. In 1924 pupils of the School began to build small wooden houses and in the course of a few years Izgrev became the centre of the School. The communist regime confiscated the area, but a good destiny preserved a part of it – here is the garden where Peter Deunov has been buried.

 

The School of the White Brotherhood offers a path to Christ. Christ did not leave the Earth after His Ascension into Heaven, said Peter Deunov. He lives in the soul of every human being, but they are not aware of this. What is called His Second Coming has begun in the 20th century and will be completed when all people will open their heart to Him and will receive Him from inside, not from outside.[43] Christ “is continuously visiting people, but they do not recognize Him.” “Usually he visits people who are in trouble, those who suffer, the poor, the ill and those who are abandoned.”[44]

 

Christ is knocking on everybody’s door and one day all people will see Him. They can find Him when they purify their hearts. They will see Him, when they enter into harmony with Christ. They can not only find Him within themselves, but also in nature.[45] Often Peter Deunov stressed the necessity of meekness and humility. They give man the possibility to develop himself correctly, without them the healing of man is impossible.46 “Humility is the first condition for connecting with God. This is the Law of the Universal White Brotherhood. Humility is the primary quality required of the disciple. It is not the righteous or the wise who will see God, but the one with humility.”[47]

 

Pride is the quality of people who are on the descending path, away from God, the path of involution. Humility is the quality of the person ascending along the path of evolution, back to God, Peter Deunov said.[48] With this view, he is in complete harmony with the spiritual traditions of Christianity. Humility is the way to metanoia, the inner transformation, which turns the path of involution into the path of evolution.

 

In the School of the White Brotherhood Peter Deunov gathered many people who developed the qualities of meekness and humility. They were inspired by him and their development accelerated. They can indeed be seen as belonging to the vanguard of the new culture. After his death in 1944 they carried within them a living memory of the harmony he was able to create around him.

 

A limited number of the around 4000 lectures of Peter Deunov has been translated into other languages, mainly English and Russian. Books with the lectures are available in every bookshop in Bulgaria and continue to inspire new readers. Paneurhythmy is danced in many countries in the world as a form of active meditation, introducing people to a new experience of nature and to the teaching of which it is an expression.

 

We may expect that in the future new impulses for the further development of the Slavic culture will be given from the spiritual world. At the same time, people from other parts of the world will incarnate in the Slavic nations, bringing with them other experiences, skills and mentalities than those that can be found among the Slavic nations presently. And everywhere people are working within their own culture for the realisation of the impulse of Love in the New Age of Christ. A new spiritual consciousness is developing all over the world and everybody is invited to participate in the creation of a global spiritual culture.

 

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40 Akordirane na choveshkata dusha, Vol 1, 1999, p 320.

 

41 The Wellspring of Good, pp 223 and 338.

 

42 Idem, p 138.

 

43 Peter Deunov za Christos i novoto chovechestvo, com- piled by Svetla Baltova, Plovdiv, 2011, p 139.

 

44 Idem, pp 151 and 169.

 

45 Idem, pp 153 and 167.

 

46 Idem, pp 114-115.

 

47 The Wellspring of Good, p 166.

 

48 Idem, p 165.

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