In his preface to this great study in symbolic yoga, Dr G.S.Arundale says that it consists of notes taken at the time of his own personal exploration in the field of symbology, 'explorations which were fortunate enough to have the guidance of One whose discoveries in innumerable fields have constituted Him a Master of the Wisdom of Life. But even this guidance give the notes no special authority, for both the guidance and the explorations are individual to myself'
Dr Arundale also says:
'One night one of the Great Beings, who is a Messenger of the Lord Siva, disclosed to me, one after another certain Symbols in their comic significance... The whole vista of the meaning and purpose of evolution gradually unveiled itself before me, and I have done my best to write it down as I perceived it, and where I could, to obtain corroboration from the great books of our Theosophical classic literature.'
The work is divided into five Books- The vigil of purification; Symbols living and radiant; Symbols real and dynamic; From the symbols to no-symbol; and Symbols at work.