The first and most important Key to Discipleship is found in this simple sentence:
"Follow the highest you know."
Why is this the most important key toward becoming an accepted disciple?
The group gave some good answers on this. I'll add my two cents.
If a person does not follow the highest he knows then every other thing he does or tries to do in connection with the path of discipleship will be corrupted and lead to illusion to some degree. If he follows the highest he knows then each step he takes will be a step toward the light.
This may not seem true at times for sometimes the highest he knows will be completely wrong. But if the highest he can see to do turns out to be an error, the error will be seen if he is pure in heart and true to himself.
If he is not pure in heart then he will not follow the highest he knows and when the error surfaces he will ignore it. He who overlooks error is not following the highest be knows. It is indeed difficult for seekers to recognize error and correct it as they proceed upon the path. Often this is more difficult for an aspiring disciple than it is for the average person because the aspirant is often convinced he is closer to God than his neighbor and therefore certain kinds of mistakes are just not supposed to happen.
The truth is that the seeker is apt to make most any kind of mistake in thinking and needs to always be open to correction.
It is interesting to contemplate the story of Lucifer's rebellion against God. He could not admit to a mistake in his thinking even when corrected by the Presiding One himself. Even in this high state was one who did not follow the highest he knew.
Keep in mind that he could have really thought he was right in his own plan, but overlooked one point that he knew. God saw from a higher angle of vision and experience than did he so Lucifer should have been open to the possibility that he was wrong. Instead of following the highest he knew and becoming one with God and seeing through his eyes he saw only through his own eyes and hence saw incorrectly and fell from his high estate.
At one time or another we all make the same mistake as Lucifer. We only look through our own eyes thinking we are following the highest we know while at the same time we have pushed away a piece of knowledge that would truly take us on the path of the highest we know.
We see this flaw appear often in debates of all kinds, in particular religious and political ones. One person gives a true piece of data that gives evidence of his point and the other person acts as if the data does not exist and changes the subject or attacks from another angle. Instead of just trying to win the debate the person following the highest he knows will incorporate the true data and see where it leads him. If it proves him to be embarrassingly wrong, then so be it.
To follow this first key the seeker must be true to himself and be aware of all that is before him that can be perceived to be true and follow where it leads to the best of his ability.
Sometimes following the highest you know is easy, and other times very difficult. Being true to ourselves in the easy times will help us to weather the storms and stay true to the course in the trying times.
The Second Key is almost as important as the first, which is this:
The disciple must have tolerance of views and behavior of others, which are different than his own. This especially applies to others of his own group or who are aspiring to the same place along the path as himself.
Contemplate and respond to the following questions:
Why is this an important key?
How does violating it hurt the group?
How does violating it interfere with soul contact?
Is it possible that the other guy who disturbs you so is following the highest he knows and should be respected?
If you follow this key does it mean you overlook the faults of the other person completely. How should you handle such flaws in others?
"He harms himself who does harm to another, and the evil plan is most harmful to the planner."
-- Hesiod (~800 BC), "Works and Days"
Copyright © 2009 by J.J. Dewey, All Rights Reserved