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Theosophical Encyclopedia

Kalahansa

A Sanskrit term meaning “Swan (lit. Indian goose) of Time” and transliterated variously as Kālakamsa, Kālahansa, Kalahansa, etc. It is a title of BRAHMĀ, identified by ancient Indians as the First Cause of the universe (or solar system) by, metaphorically, laying a cosmic Egg in space (akāśā). A similar account may be found in the Chāndogya Upaniṣad (4.19.1-2).

In Transactions of the Blavatsky Lodge, Helena P. BLAVATSKY states, “Kalahansa has a dual meaning. Exoterically it is Brahmā who is the Swan, the ‘Great Bird,’ the vehicle in which Darkness manifests itself to human comprehension as light, and this Universe. But esoterically, it is Darkness itself, the unknowable Absolute which is the Source, firstly of the radiation called the First Logos, then of its reflection, the Dawn, or the Second Logos, and finally of Brahmâ, the manifested Light, or the Third Logos” (Transactions, 119; CW X:379). She also says of the egg or “mundane egg” that it “is an expression of Abstract Form” (Transactions, 85; CW X:352) and “is simply the first stage of manifestation, undifferentiated primordial matter, in which the vital creative Germ receives its first spiritual impulse . . .” but that the word “Germ” is used here in a figurative sense, since “the germ is everywhere, even as the circle whose circumference is nowhere and whose centre is everywhere” (Transactions, 85; CW X:353).

R.W.B.

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