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DIEU ET MON DROIT – ROYALTY AND THE DIVINE RIGHT TO RULE

Loyalty to the ideal you have inherited is your duty, above everything else, because the calling comes from the highest source – God himself. Monarchy is God’s sacred mission to grace and dignify the Earth, to give people an ideal to strive towards – an example of nobility and duty. That is why you are crowned in an abbey and not in a government building. Why you were anointed, not appointed. It’s an Archbishop that puts a crown on your head not a minister or public servant, which means that you are answerable to God in your duty and not to the public.

(Queen Mary [Eileen Atkins] speaking to the new Queen Elizabeth II [Claire Foy] in 1952, in Episode 3 ‘Act of God’ from Series 1 of the Netflix series “The Crown”).

Coat of arms outside Ipswich town hall. Photo by Colyn Boyce

Coat of arms outside Ipswich town hall. Photo by Colyn Boyce

Dieu et mon droit, French for God and my right  is the motto of the Monarch of the United Kingdom, outside Scotland. The motto is said to have first been used by Richard I (1157–1199) as a battle cry and presumed to be a reference to the divine right of the Monarch to govern.

Queen Elizabeth II on her 90th birthday outside Windsor Castle in April 2016. Photo by Colyn Boyce

We have moved on considerably in the 800 years since Richard I and the real ‘power’ of the sitting monarch has been diminished dramatically. However what is known as ‘royal prerogative’ affords Queen Elizabeth II a significant ‘constitutional presence’ in foreign affairs, defence, and national security but limited power, because the exercise of the prerogative is in the hands of the prime minister and government officials. The monarch is the Commander in Chief of the Armed Forces, and as such has authority to recruit members of the armed forces.  The prerogative empowers the Queen to appoint bishops and archbishops in the Church of England. The monarch also exerts a certain influence of power on her weekly and closed conversations with the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom.

English theosophist Elizabeth Crofts, comments that the Queen fulfils a particularly auspicious role at the ceremony of Trooping the Colour. She stands in representation of the One to which the many bow, as it were, in acknowledgement and even affection. She represents the highest in each of us to which our lower self does obeisance. It is therefore a deeply spiritual ceremony and should not be taken at a superficial level”.  

The British royal family has had a particularly high profile in the past four years what with the Queen celebrating her 90 birthday and 65 years on the throne in 2016. The following year Prince Philip and her marked 70 years of marriage. In April 2018, Prince William and Kate Middleton announced to the world the birth of their third child ,Prince Louis and in May two years ago Prince Harry and Meghan Markle tied the knot. In May 2019, their first child, Archie, was born. On the silver screen, the first three series of The Crown has been shown. And we have been treated to three series of Victoria with Jenna Coleman – former principal star in the Dr Who television programme.

Sticking with monarchy, the BBC 2 production of Versailles, which chronicles the life of the Sun-King, Louis XIV and his sumptuous palace outside Paris ran for 3 seasons up until 2018. Much to the delight of many, the Royals continue to travel abroad – the trips by Prince William and Kate to Canada in 2016 and to New Zealand in 2019 were particularly popular. But it is Prince Charles and Camilla, the Duchess of Cornwall, who have recently undertaken the most official overseas tours – some 172 in 2017 alone – since the Queen stopped travelling abroad in 2015. So royalty and monarchy remains firmly in the public eye. Even if certain members of the British royal family attract negative headlines, the Queen’s own popularity remains high amongst the general population.

Kurt Leland, is National Lecturer for the Theosophical Society in America, has published a book, recently, entitled The Rainbow Body: A History of the Western Chakra System from Blavatsky to Brennan. I asked him whether he could see anything in the chakra system which denotes power and spirituality in royalty. We are grateful for the following reply.

“If we examine the qualities assigned to the chakras in the Western system (survival, sexuality, power, love, communication, intuition or third eye, and transcendence), then the third chakra of power seems closest to the notion of rulership. In the ancient Eastern system, according to Sat-Cakra-Nirupana (Description of the six centres), the late sixteenth-century text upon which Arthur Avalon’s (Sir John Woodroffe’s) influential The Serpent Power is based, when the yogi meditates on muladhara, the first chakra, he becomes “Lord of speech and a King among men, and an Adept in all kinds of learning. 

Queen Victoria. National Portrait Gallery, London Photo by Colyn Boyce

He becomes ever free of all diseases, and his inmost Spirit becomes full of great gladness. Pure of disposition by his deep and musical words, he serves the foremost of the Devas.” (verse 13, The Serpent Power, 354). Change he to she and Devas to God, and I think you have a marvellous description of Queen Elizabeth II. According to Western esotericism, a ruler sets the moral and spiritual tone of the country, not only through his/her example in thought, feeling, and action, but also through the spiritual energy he/she radiates. In this sense, the ruler functions as the country’s guru, and thus could be said to broadcast the moral and spiritual tone of the country through the sixth chakra. We certainly see that in the reign of Queen Victoria, by way of obvious example”. As Edward Archer said in a lecture given years ago at the London Headquarters of the Theosophical Society in England, on Princess Diana, “The Queen represents the permanent atom in the heart chakra of the nation, which is London”

Seated Buddha 1736-86.
Qing Dynasty.
Victoria and Albert Museum,
London Photo by Colyn Boyce

In the Collected Writings, H. P. Blavatsky tells us something of how kings came to know the secrets of nature to help their fellow men. “The Egyptian Priests, like the Brahmans of old, held the reins of the governing power, a system that descended to them by direct inheritance from the Initiates of the great Atlantis. Later, the Initiates transmitted their knowledge to the human kings. It was their prerogative and duty to reveal the secrets of Nature that were useful to mankind – the hidden virtues of plants, the art of healing the sick, and of bringing about brotherly love and mutual help among mankind. No Initiate was one if he could not heal – aye, recall to life from apparent death (coma) those who would have indeed died” Those who showed such powers were regarded as Kings and Initiates. Gautama the Buddha, Jesus and Apollonius were all regarded as healers. The later royal privilege descended to our Fifth Race kings through the kings of Egypt. All of whom were initiated into the mysteries of medicine. Blavatsky speaks of the Kings of Hungary curing jaundice, the Dukes of Burgundy preserving people from the plague. Vespasian and Hadrian needed only to pronounce a few words taught them by Hierophants in order to restore sight to the blind and health to the cripple. From that time onward history has recorded cases of the same privilege conferred on the emperors and kings of almost every nation.”

While this writer is not aware of any special healing qualities pertaining to reigning British monarch, the Queen shows her ‘caring side’ as patron of the Royal London Hospital for Integrated Medicine, which includes the former Royal London Homeopathic Hospital and offers such complementary services as acupuncture and herbal medicine, which reflects the Royal Family’s support of ‘natural’ healing methods.

Prince Harry, Duchess of Cambridge and Prince William at St Paul’s Cathedral, June 2016. Photo by Colyn Boyce

The Queen and other Members of the Royal Family lend their names and much of their time to over 3,000 charities and organisations. Prince William’s involvement with the Centrepoint charity in London reflects his long- standing interest in homelessness and the people affected by it.  Prince Harry was a force behind creation of the Invictus Games, in 2014 – a parasport event for wounded, injured or sick armed services personnel.

Prince Charles and Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall at St Paul’s Cathedral, June 2016. Photo by Colyn Boyce

And the monarch-in-waiting, The Prince of Wales, supports a number of environmental charities and runs an organic farm on his estate in Gloucestershire. Charles has described his efforts to create a ‘sustainable’ estate as representing “…one very small attempt to heal the appalling short-sighted damage done to the soil, the landscape and our own souls.

Written by

Colyn Boyce is former Publicist for the English Section of the Theosophical Society and worked at the London HQ 1981 - 2019. During 2018 and 2019 he undertook lecture tours in western Canada and in the NE United States.

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