“The ‘Being’, which has to remain nameless, is the Tree from which, in subsequent ages, all the great historically known Sages and Hierophants, such as the Rishi Kapila, Hermes, Enoch, Orpheus, etc., have branched off. As objective man, he is the mysterious (to the profane—the ever invisible) yet ever present Personage about whom legends are rife in the East, especially among the Occultists and the students of the Sacred Science. And it is he again who hold spiritual sway over the initiated Adepts, throughout the whole world. He is, as said, the ‘Nameless One’ who has so many names and whose very nature are unknown. He is the ‘Initiator,’ called the ‘GREAT SACRIFICE.’ For sitting at the threshold of LIGHT, he looks into it from within the circle of Darkness, which he will not cross; nor will he quit his post till the last day of this life-cycle. Why does the solitary Watcher remain at his self-chosen post? Why does he sit by the fountain of primeval Wisdom … neither on this Earth, nor in the heaven? Because the lonely sore-footed pilgrims on their way back to their home are never sure to the last moment of not losing the way in this limitless desert of illusion and matter called Earth-Life.” ~H. P. Blavatsky
It seems from the quoted description, and other sources, that this solitary watcher is not a single being, but a type of being. This is the guide along the path of enlightenment. He is the soldier who protects the initiates as much as possible from attack by dark beings. He is the archetype of man, who we all wish to return to, even if we don’t know it. It is the being we wish to become.
Archetype of Man
To Carl Jung, archetypes were universal patterns or images that are part of the collective unconscious. They are potentials, goals. He believed that the subconscious or unconscious mind had layers. He called the second layer the “collective unconscious.” This layer is common to all. In it is found instinctive thought and universal concepts and patterns. Among these patterns are the archetypes. There are actually four archetypes for man. The one that represents the Solitary Watcher is called the Magician. Robert Moore says, “The magician is the knower, He knows secret and hidden knowledge of all kinds”. This sounds, not surprisingly, like a description of Gnosis. The magician is powerful and unafraid.
Or it may be that the Solitary Watcher is more like a combination of the sage, the Soul, and the Magician. Three different, yet related archetypes. He represents the ideal of the spiritual seeker. He wants to better himself, better the world, and learn the truth. He has escaped the illusion.
Threshold of Light
Blavatsky says (or interprets from the Secret Doctrine) that this Solitary Watcher sits at the threshold of Light, yet he doesn’t enter it. This seems like strange behavior. He sits outside the gates of heaven but doesn’t enter. Shouldn’t he want to enter immediately? Shouldn’t he be proud that he arrived before almost everyone else? In a race, isn’t reaching the finish line, and crossing it the goal? Yes, but the spiritual journey is not a race, not a contest. The goal is not to be there first, but simply to be there.
Because of his love for all of humanity, he wished to stay where he can help guide others on that journey of Light.
In truth, the Solitary Watcher, who probably represents thousands of souls in the same situation, cannot enter. They can peek inside and learn the truth, but not enter. That is because of a simple rule that is never taught in conventional churches. Man cannot enter heaven alone. We must all enter at once, or not at all. So it is not just a desire to help others reach that threshold, it is a necessity. Only when we are all at the gate will the gate open and let us all in.
Why? Because to God, we are each just a small part of one being called Man. And since individual men and women and but tiny pieces, they are not yet ready to be inside. So they serve as the Solitary Watcher until everyone else arrives and we become whole again. So much like the Hero, and Adam are symbolic beings, the Solitary Watcher is symbolic. He is all of those who have, over many centuries, reached Heaven’s Gate. But they do not enter. Partly because they can’t. But mostly, because they desire to help the rest of us achieve what they have achieved. Bless them all!