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VOL. XIV., No. 9 HAMILTON, NOVEMBER 15th, 1933 Price 10 Cents
AN INTERNATIONAL MESSAGE
It has been suggested that the National Societies should each send a message to the others on this natal month of The Theosophical Society when it begins its fifty-ninth year.
In Canada, sitting in the middle of the commercial world, nearer to Europe, and nearer to Asia than any other American country, and neighbours to one of the great nations of the world, outnumbering us twelve to one, but treated in neighborly fashion and at peace with all the world, we know of nothing that can be so desirable for the rest of humanity as Peace.
For more than a hundred years the United States and we have dwelt together, able to settle all our differences of opinion around the council board, and never dreaming of a resort to arms. We can see, and we know by experience, that war is futile. Civilized people do not fight. To go to war is a confession of inferior mentality. In the ages when war was the natural arbitrament it was obvious that brute strength and not reason or justice was first considered. It may be a long time before humanity as a whole ascends to the higher level, and until the immature egos who are incarnating in so many of the European nations at the present time have been disciplined and suffered, war will probably sway the destinies of many of these minor nations.
But on this continent we wish that our South American cousins from Mexico to the tip of the Southern Continent could realize the possibility of building up an American ethic which would enforce by moral suasion the principles of peace and arbitration in the settlement of all disputes.
Let it be thoroughly understood, that the best egos do not incarnate in the nations that cultivate and follow lower standards than have been established among the greatest nations, and that therefore a nation is bound to decline in its influence and its national values if it insists on the standards of force and battle.
Germany has already sunk many degrees below the standards of Goethe and Schiller and Kant and Schopenhauer, and refuses to recognize any standard but a self-constituted one of arms. The lesser races as they have been styled, naturally invite the souls whose aim in life is mental development and high moral evolution.
The late Governors of Nigeria and British Guiana has stated that the Negro races have made greater progress mentally in the last century than any others. The "poor whites", as they are called, the detritus of the white nations, untouchables almost, in their own white habitat, are increasing and are on a lower level than any corresponding class among Negro races.
Japan has disappointed the West, and must have violated the best sensibilities of her own people by her policy towards China. It is for Theosophists everywhere to preach Peace and the erection of the standards and purposes of peace. We have no greater message to give our Brethren.
THE THEOSOPHY OF THE UPANISHADS.
(Continued from Page 337.)
But this knowledge of the selves that perceive is only half of life, and the lesser half; the greater half is the righteousness of the selves that will. And this end also is wonderfully subserved by the mirror world. For what is the true ends of righteousness but the Eternal, the supreme reality? and what reality can be greater than the perfect oneness of the One? Therefore all true righteousness is the establishing of the oneness of the One, the reuniting of the estranged selves with the Eternal, the supreme Self that they really are. This purpose was furthered in the animal physical life, as we have seen, by the first rude acquaintanceship of appetite and contest. In the new mental. life of the mirror world, it is carried incomparably further. For the mere physical presence of the desired one, ministering to appetite, is substituted the perpetual image of the beloved, all the wild romance of passion, of hoping and fearing for the beloved for the most absorbing part of human life. This long love-song of humanity brings the estranged selves together with a penetrating force ands vigour that nothing else can compare with, an overwhelming power that constantly sets at naught and dwarfs to insignificance every other relation of human life. If the dominant notes of the first act of the threefold life drama were instinct and appetite, the strongest chords of the second are undoubtedly knowledge and love.
Thus for the first two worlds, the first two steps to the Self, the first two fires, the first two acts of life.
As the purity and healthy innocence of animal life is altogether disconcerted and thrown out of balance when the mental life of the subjective world begins to bear down on it; so the qualities of well-balanced and satisfying human life, - so far as the pursuit of knowledge and love are ever satisfying, - begin gradually to be over-ridden and disturbed, convulsed and subtly penetrated by a new reality, a new life, a new world bearing in upon human life from above. This new gradually dawning life is the light of the higher Self, gradually leading humanity onward to a new era of divinity.
The coming of the dawn we saw, was heralded by deeper darkness; the new counsels of perfection that the divine voice begins to whisper, bear as their first fruits a penetrating unrest, almost an agony of despair. The old human love-song jars discordantly, but no divine music has yet taken its place. The pursuit of knowledge has ended in bitterness, but there is as yet, no voice of wisdom to fill its place.
We cannot, even if we would, pierce far into the secrets of that newer day. The life of the higher Self, stopping but one degree short of the perfection of the Eternal, must slowly unfold its divinity within us for many an age yet, before we can know it and declare it fully.
We have, as yet, two oracles only of the hidden things to come; two oracles declared to us hitherto in great suffering and sorrow. For the mists of the old worlds that are passing away still lie heavy on our eyes! we are still caught and dazzled by the flashes of color, the almost painful sweetness of the old love-song of life; our new birth is strongly tinged with regrets and backward glances, and it will be a long time yet before we shall feel the young joy in our newer life, that properly belongs to it. There is still more of fear than of delight in our tardy acquiescences with the mandates of the higher Self, though we feel already that acquiescence is inevitable.
The two oracles thus declared in sorrow are no satisfaction in desire, no complacency for our personalities. We see only their shadows now; we shall one day see the light that casts the shadows. It is already whispered to us through the stillness that these two oracles, so pitiful when read in the language of men, bear quite other meaning in the language of the gods.
No satisfaction for desire, because we are born, not to the fleeting things of desire, but to the ever-present and perfect life of the Self; no triumph for our personalities, because we are born, not to over-ride and tyrannize our other selves, but to enter into the fullest ands most perfect harmony with our other selves, a harmony that shall, one day, dawn into the perfect unity of the estranged selves in the supreme.
We shall, therefore, further the life of the higher Self most potently by following out and realizing these two divine laws in every detail and particular of life: the law of turning backward from sensuality; and the law of perfect selflessness and subordination of our personal selves, first to the divine Self within us, and then, as our light grows, to the divine Self in all our other selves.
This life of the higher Self will raise us above the changing worlds of birth and rebirth, death and again death, and introduce us to a world, of ever-present life that knows no change but the change from greater to greater splendour. It will raise us above appetite and contest, and, not less above passionate love and hate, to make us freeholders in a world of perfect unison with the other selves, a harmony far deeper and more perfect than passionate love.
Thus, retreading the small old path to the supreme Self, we shall gradually enter into our kingdom; and the growing wisdom that is ours may gradually make clear to us the secret and reason of our long exile.
Even now, we may guess something of the causes that led to our fall, a fall that made necessary the long upward journey; the conquest, one after another, of the three worlds; the lighting one after another, of the three fires.
We may guess that for the perfect fulness of the Eternal it was necessary that the whole of the Eternal should be fully revealed to every part of the Eternal; and that from this necessity arose the illusion by which that one Self seems to be mirrored in innumerable selves. Then again, as the whole Eternal, the perfect Self, could not be revealed at once, in a single flash, to each limited and partial self, it became necessary for the full revelation to be made in a long series of partial revelations, one flowing out of the other, one following the other, and thus dividing the Eternal into the causal series that mark the distinctive character of the causal world, the highest of the threefold outer worlds. And again, as the elements of these causal chains could not present themselves simultaneously, but had to become successively apparent, to causality was thus added time, the union of these two making the distinctive nature of the second, the mental subjective world. Then, that more causal chains than one might together be presented to the perceiver, the illusion of space arose; and thus, through causality, time and space, was woven the full web of the unreal, apparent world; while above these three, above causality, above space and time, stands the real, the Self, the Eternal. With the conquest of each of the three worlds, we shall undo one of the webs of illusion and unreality, and thereby make one step forward towards restoring the pristine excellence of the Self, and bringing back to it the full harvest of wealth gained by rich ages of experience.
But this we shall better know when knowledge expands into the joyful wisdom that is to supersede it.
The dawn comes, and, after the drawn, sunrise and perfect day. And this day shall have a singular divine quality that the Upanishads tell of thus:
"Thereon that Sun rising overhead, shall rise no more nor set any more, but shall stand there, in oneness, in the midst. As this verse tells:
"There is not there any sunset nor sunrise for evermore. Bear witness, ye gods, that I truly tell of that Eternal.
"For him the sun rises not nor sets, for him who knows this hidden wisdom well, there is perfect day forever."
(To Be Continued.)
LIFE AFTER LIFE
or The Theory of Reincarnation
By Eustace Miles, M.A., Formerly Scholar of King's College, Cambridge
(Continued from Page 238.)
But we need not confine ourselves to olden times.
Sir Thomas Browne held that men "are lived over again" (though perhaps he never held the theory in the most definite form, but rather alluded to characteristics), and Emerson, though often cited as believing in the idea, was not, so far as I can see, a certain advocate of it, as when he says: -
"I cannot tell if these wonderful qualities which house today in this mortal frame shall ever reassemble in equal activity in a similar frame, or whether they have before had a natural history like that of this body you see before you; but this one thing I know, that these qualities did not now begin to exist, cannot be sick with my sickness nor buried in my grave."
Nor can we fairly assign to novelists the views that they put into the mouths of their characters, or set forth in their stories, as when Bulwer writes:
"Eternity may be but an endless series of those migrations which men call deaths, abandonments, of home after home, even to fairer scenes and loftier heights. Age after age the, spirit may shift its tent, fated not to rest in the dull Elysium of the heathen, but carrying with it evermore its two elements, activity and desire."
Sir Humphry Davy, Hume, and Lichtenberg are far more definite, when they say: -
"We sometimes in sleep lose the beginning and end of a dream, and recollect the middle of it, and one dream has no connection with another, and yet we are conscious of an infinite variety of dreams, and there is a strong analogy for believing in an infinity of past existence which must have been connected; and human life may be regarded as a type of infinite and immortal life, and its succession of sleep and dreams as a type of the changes of death and birth to which from its nature it is liable" (Sir Humphry Davy).
"The metempsychoses is therefore the only system of this kind that philosophers can hearken to. " (Hume).
"I cannot get rid of the thought that I died before I was born" (Lichtenberg).
Other quotations, - from the Rev. William R. Alger, Sir Thomas Browne, Professor W. A. Butler, the younger Herder, Lessing, Dr. Henry More, Schopenhauer, and Southey - show how wide is the range of minds that have maintained this view.
The Rev. William R. Alger: "Besides the various distinctive arguments of its own, every reason for the resurrection holds with at least equal force for transmigration. The argument from analogy is especially strong. It is natural to argue from the universal spectacle of incarnated life, that this is the eternal scheme everywhere, the variety of souls finding in the variety of worlds an everlasting series of adventures in appropriate organisms; there being, as Paul said, one kind of flesh of birds, another of beasts, another of men, another of angels, and so on. Our present lack of recollection of past lives is no disproof of their actuality. Every night we lose all knowledge of the past, but every day we reawaken to a memory of the whole series of days and nights. So in one night we may forget or dream, and in another recover the whole thread of experience from the beginning.
"In every event, it must be confessed that of all the thoughtful and refined forms of the belief in a future life none has had so extensive and prolonged a prevalence as this. It has the vote of the majority, having for ages on ages been held by half the human race with an intensity of conviction almost without a parallel. Indeed, the most striking fact about the doctrine of the repeated incarnations of the soul, its form and experience in each successive embodiment being determined by its merits and demerits in the preceding ones, is the
constant reappearance of that faith in all parts of the world, and its permanent hold on certain great nations."
Sir Thomas Browne: "What follows may be applied to the pre-existent humanity of the Messiah. 'When he prepared the heavens I was there, when he encircled the face of the deep, when he established the clouds above, when he appointed the foundations of the earth, then I was by him, as one brought up with him, and I was daily his delight, rejoicing always before him, rejoicing in the habitable parts of the earth, and my delights were in the sons of men.' It is visible that Solomon speaks here of a time soon after the creation of the world, of a time when the earth was inhabited only by a pure, innocent race. Can this be said after the Fall, when the earth was cursed? It is only a profound ignorance of the ancient, primitive tradition of pre-existence that can make men mistake the true sense of this sublime text."
Professor W. A. Butler: "It must be allowed that there is much in the hypothesis of pre-existence (at least) which might attract a speculator busied with the endeavour to reduce the moral system of the world under intelligible laws. The solution which it at once furnishes of the state and fortunes of each individual as arising in some unknown but direct process from his own voluntary acts, though it throws, of course, no light on the ultimate question of the existence of moral evil (which it only removes a single step), does yet contribute to satisfy the mind as to the equity of that immediate manifestation of it, and of its physical attendants, which we unhappily witness."
(To Be Continued.)
If you are a believer in the Brotherhood of Humanity you should belong to the only Society that makes this the sole basis of membership. The dues are $2.60 a year, including subscription to the official Magazine. Will you not join?
AS IN A LOOKING GLASS.
By Mrs. Walter Tibbits
(Continued from Page 239)
Mrs. Hamilton of Leny, our neighbour, drove through the village to Kirk dressed in moleskins killed on her estate, bowing right and left like the Queen. The Miss McNabs sent shortbread to Balmoral weekly. The Robertsons, as orthodox Victorians, made the Grand Tour of Europe in 1876-7. Aunt Louisa wrote in her Diary, "We were very much interested in watching the ship taking in her cargo, which she did all day long, while we stayed in the harbour of Leghorn - marble, wine, and brooms, and numberless sundry cases. We also have on board a dreadful looking gang of prisoners, most of them murderers. One said he had killed six persons, and only wished he could kill six more! As one hears such things, one feels too sad and overpowered to express one's self. When walking up and down deck we saw these wretched men chained together in twos, hand to hand and foot to foot. Truly their appearance was not human, but devilish. I thought to myself hell is, and will be, full of such. Oh, if the proud aristocrats and elegant women of the world, with all their fastidiousness, and that ambitious and gentlemanly young man, and lovely girl, types of hundreds of dear unconverted ones, but believed that for ever they would have to associate with such, unless they repent and believe, would they not flee for refuge to Jesus, and now?"
"Rome. It had seemed to me so clear that no more galleries should be visited, that is to say, that I should refuse to go as a Christian, that I was quite surprised this morning to find that it was the more Christlike to go than to stay away. The Palace Farnesina was the one selected, celebrated for frescoes by Raphael, and a very large head in charcoal executed by Michael Angelo. Doubtless Raphael's designs are very exquisite, looked at from
only a human point of view, but the paintings altogether appealed so to the senses, that I was indeed glad to come away. Since we came away nearly five months ago, I have not met with one Christian in an hotel that I knew of, and yet I have been all along seeking them out. And several disappointments have I had, when from some one's dress or expression I have gone up to them, hoping so keenly to find we were one in spiritual sympathies, but in every single instance have I been mistaken."
Visiting my father's relatives in Victorian Ireland, I saw indeed, acted before me, Mr. George Moore's Drama in Muslin. The young men had left. There were crowds of girls of all ages. Of marrying and giving in marriage, my relations told me there was none in Tipperary. When the family place was left to the brother, the girls became "distressed Irish gentlewomen". Of course none of our relatives ever gave in to the Land League, "Death before dishonour," said my cousin, Johnstone Stoney of Emell Castle, "even though they boycott my bog". This clarion cry was re-echoed by his son-in-law, Minchin of Lough Derg. This spirit was presumably respected by the peasantry. We owned between us 5 old mediaeval castles in the hottest parts of Drogheda and Tipperary. 20,000# mansions blazed around us. But our flags are still flying as proudly as ever from all 5 towers.
The time came to choose my own career. To Victorian ideas it seemed very hard to have to do so. But I look at the envied girl friends while mothers "did their duty by them socially." What are they now?
Great, heavy, middle-aged women unknown outside their own tiny circles. No God held out something better for me than "ghastly smooth life", had I only seen it.
Two careers always seemed desirable. I had inherited my father's voice. He had sung in Cathedrals. Should I be a prima donna, or a journalist dreaming by the Sweet Waters of Asia, writing of the Golden Horn? Here faith failed. Owing to Victorian apposition, I weakly chose the lesser career of a traveler. The voice, tested in London, Paris., Rome, was all there. It is obvious I could have accomplished more as Madame de Lisaniskea, the singer. But can you expect a purdah woman of many lives to be strong?
In order to get out East, I studied to be a Dufferin Doctor. At this time I met all four of Mr. Stead's famous Bs., Mesdames Booth, Blavatsky, Besant, and Butler. Needless to say our home at Salisbury was the headquarters of the Butler emissaries who came there in support of that policy which, at one time, caused a large proportion of the British Army to be on the sick list. In fact, my husband told me it was only because there were "no people of your parents' views" in India that they were able to keep the troops healthy.
Escaped from a religious tyranny unimaginable in these days, I ran round London, a maid of Athens, seeking the new.
I sought out Prince Kropotkin, having been moved by his Appeal to the Young. Living in exile at Harrow he was busy with carpentering both wood and ideas. The Princess told me that England and America were open to them. Now, as Kropotkin advocated dynamite to me as "a cheap way of speaking," one cannot wonder at the inhospitality of other lands. That is why his own death was caused by Soviet severities. Why Stepniak, who had killed a tyrant with his hands, was killed by the passing of a train. Isadora Duncan all her life lived for the flesh. As an educated woman, she should have controlled the lower nature. So the two first born of her flesh were taken from her in a flooded river. She continued to sin, so its next fruit was still-born. Still stiff-necked in sin, that neck was broken by a motor wheel.
At that time two colonies of Russians lived on either bank of the Seine. On the right were the Tsarists, living like Grand Dukes, swaggering down the Casino steps at Monte, always at the Embassy. On the left were the Revolutionists, studying at
the Sorbonne, barely keeping body and soul together. They never went near the Embassy, but the Embassy kept a very sharp look out upon them. Well, the left bank has triumphed. The Embassy has gone there itself. But is Russia any happier, now that the Tsar's nephew is a dressmaker, the opera stinks of the proletariat? That the Crown Jewels, the wonders of the world, are no more, the diamond toy train has been smashed up, the aristocrats serve in Paris shops? Of course it is the Karma of a condition when even to mention Theosophy might mean Siberia. But is Russia any happier? Of course bye and bye things will right themselves, as they have in France, but is the nation any happier meanwhile? I trow not. Is England any happier now that the great houses are cut into allotments, now that Park Lane is Prison Lane? now that the green woods are a bungalow town? With Lord Curzon, ah doot it! As I write, a, Spanish mob has burnt down innumerable churches and convents containing Murillos.
(To Be Continued.)
THE THREE TRUTHS
There are three truths which are absolute, and which cannot be lost, but yet may remain silent for lack of speech.
The soul of man is immortal, and its future is the future of a thing whose growth and splendour have no limit.
The principle which gives life dwells in us, and without us, is undying and eternally beneficent, is not heard or seen, or smelt, but is perceived by the man who desires perception.
Each man is his own absolute lawgiver, the dispenser of glory or gloom to himself; the decreer of his life, his reward, his punishment.
These truths, which are as great as is life itself, are as simple as the simplest mind of man. Feed the hungry with them. - Idyll of the White Lotus.
A MESSAGE TO ASTROLOGERS
Sooner or later the student of Astrology undertakes the study of Mundane Astrology in order to enlarge his sphere of knowledge. Mundane or National Astrology is simply the application to the life of nations, or large communities, of the principles of the science. Every nation, as every human being, is born under certain conditions or configurations of the Zodiac and the Planetary system, which stamp upon it the national character. Aggressive or militaristic nations like England and Germany, whose whole history is one of colonial exploitation are, as in this case, under the Zodiacal rulership of Aries, governed by Mars. Peaceful and artistic people, such as the Japanese really are, usually have Libra as their ruling sign. The military machine is foreign to Japanese psychology, and may yet be the cause of that nation's downfall. Mundane Astrology like the Natal or Genethliacal branch of the science therefore reveals the psychology of the people, and the political destiny of the nation being studied.
In a study of the majority of the textbooks dealing with this branch of the science one finds no mention of Canada whatsoever. English astrologers like English politicians prefer to ignore this country. Raphael's Almanac, the best of its kind, mentions Canada for the first time upon a request from this country, in its 1934 issue. This almanac has been published yearly for one hundred and fourteen years! It gives over a page to the United States and but a tiny paragraph, on nothing in particular, to Canada.
Thus no help in astrological research work, in regard to the Zodiacal rulership of Canada, can be expected from foreign astrologers. This article is primarily an appeal to Canadian astrologers to contribute their share in this work. As the importance of this knowledge is liable to be underrated by laymen, one must stress the fact that knowledge of the nation's ruling sign is the key to the whole science of
National prediction. Without knowing it one will not get far in interpreting the influence of celestial phenomena upon the country. One must also know the ruling sign in order to judge the effect, through their nativities or horoscopes, upon the nation, of new Prime Ministers. This knowledge would open up a whole avenue of approach for Canadian astrologers to study and chart the cross-currents of National destiny.
I wish therefore to present my views upon the Zodiacal rulership of this country. They need not be accepted as dogmatic fact, but simply as a tentative offering to research. Far some years I have tried to determine the sign governing Canada, but have been unable to do so. A cursory study of the epochal making dates in the Nation's history lead me to the conviction that the sign Cancer rules Canada. Most of the very important dates fall into the period when the Sun is in Cancer: namely June 21st to July the 21st. Also when the Sun is in the other two signs of Watery Triplicity; namely Pisces, February 19th to March 20th and Scorpio, October 23rd to November 21st. It may be argued that there are other dates equally as important as these given below. It is unfortunate that the hour at which these important events took place is unknown, and so one cannot determine as to what part the sign in question took at the time. It is here that astrologers can help in research work along this line, by verifying or disproving my statement in regard to Cancer; and by observing the time events or constructions of National importance are started, and checking this over to see which sign figures predominantly in the charts.
A few of the important dates when the Sun was in Cancer are as follows: -
June 24th 1497 - John Cabot discovers Eastern coast of North America.
June 22nd, 1603, Champlain's first landing in Canada.
July 3rd, 1608, Champlain's second visit; the founding of Quebec.
July 12th, 1812, The invasion of Canada by the Americans. The war of 1812 is the first sign of the beginning of a National spirit; for it was the settlers who rose to defend their homes, and not the few British troops then here, who repulsed and expelled the invader.
June 24th, 1813, Laura Secord and the defeat of the Americans at Beaver Dam.
July 18th, 1817, First treaty with the North-West Indians.
July 21st, 1836, Opening of the first railway in Canada, from Laprairie to St. John's, Que.
July, lst, 1858, Introduction, of Canadian decimal currency.
July 1st, 1867, The British North American Act becomes operative law. The Confederation of the provinces.
July 15th, 1870, The North-West Territories and Manitoba admitted into the Confederation,.
July 20th, 1871, British Columbia enters the Confederation.
July 1st, 1878, Canada joins the International Postal Union.
June 28th, 1886, Then first through train of the C.P.R. from Montreal to Vancouver.
July 11th, 1896, Sir Wilfred Laurier becomes Prime Minister.
July 21st, 1932, Imperial Conference at Ottawa.
It, is also interesting to note that most of the important battles Canadians have been in took place when the Sun is in Scorpio, the Mars sign of this triplicity. The Battle of Passchendaele, October 26th to November 10th, 1917, is an example. Troop movements took place in October, 1914, though not in Scorpio, when the largest fighting force ever sent overseas (33,000 men) landed in England. These are only a few of numerous examples that could be quoted. Were the time of many other important events that occurred in other months available, one might find by casting a horoscope for the occasion that the sign Cancer figured predominantly.
After considering the evidence presented by the dates given, the idea of Cancer as Canada's ruling sign is driven home by the
fact that the early settlers came here to seek homes. It was home-building and not colonial exploitation that has opened up and built this great nation. The real pioneers came from many lands seeking a homeland to escape the persecution and misery they endured in the Old Land. Not the lust for Empire but the modest desire for a home, peace and security was the prime motives behind the colonization of this country. Canadian civilization has its basis in its homes and it will endure by them. The sign Cancer governs the home, property, lands or farms, and so gives us the key to Canadian psychology.
Cancer well describes the Canadian; for they are quiet, peaceful, modest, conservative and home-loving people. It well describes the vast farm lands, the ever rising mercantile trade, and principally the vast unlimited wealth of the land itself. Consider Holland, also a Cancer nation, and magnify that conception a thousand fold and some faint idea of what Canada is to become will be yours. Even today Canada is fifth among the great trading nations of the World. This amazing position has been built up by Canadian perseverance and industry, without the slightest colonial aggression or military power. Canada is fast becoming the premier shipping country of the World, a position Holland held in the 17th century. Like Holland, the Canadians are canal builders, and the country is nearly everywhere rich in water. The Canadians, if I am correct in my premise, will become the World's most successful traders and farmers.
The Scots also under Cancer, have sought homes here in great numbers, infusing their characteristics into the national character. The country is as yet too young to manifest all the tendencies or characteristics of this sign. As time goes on such tendencies as reverence for the honoured dead, such as practiced by Canada's elder brother, ancient and honorable China, will manifest and the shrines of such true Canadians as Sir Adam Beck will become places of pilgrimage. The honesty and fair-dealing of the Chinese is strongly evident in Canadian character. Canada's greatest friend, as the future will show, lies not across the Atlantic, but across the Pacific, in another "Cancer" nation - China. Like China the Canadians are building a nation that will endure - but they are building greater than they know. It was Laurier who said the Twentieth century was Canada's.
IN MEMORY OF GEORGE R. S. MEAD
And now insatiable, inexorable Death has taken another of the former members of the London Headquarters staff who surrounded H.P.B. Among them none worked more faithfully, energetically and efficiently than George R.S. Mead, then Secretary of the European Section of the T.S. To him H.P.B. submitted all her manuscripts to be revised and corrected before publication. From early in the morning, usually long before the breakfast hour, till late in the evening he worked steadily at his secretarial and literary tasks. When, some time after H.P.B.'s death, it became necessary to reprint the Secret Doctrine he performed the arduous labour of revising the text and reading the proofs precisely as he had done with her writings while she was living. Once when he had handed me many pages of the S. D. which he had revised, he complained rather feelingly that the work he was doing should have been done by the two Keightleys when they brought out the first edition. In justice to them, however, the fact should be recorded that the changes and corrections they made in the first edition were far more numerous and important than those made by Mr. Mead in the so-called revised edition. For instance, Archibald Keightley told me that the portion of the S.D. which H.P.B. wrote while she was in France was, as he laughingly expressed it, "like literal translations from the French," and he had to rewrite every
sentence of it. But her English improved, he said, when she got to England. Theosophists, who have criticized and disparaged Mr. Mead far correcting H.P.B.'s English should, to be consistent, likewise denounce Archibald Keightley, Bertram Keightley and others whose help she requested and gratefully received. The fanatics who fancy that the first edition gives H.P.B.'s exact wording are badly mistaken.
For years I was closely associated with Mr. Mead, and never have I known a more conscientious and honorable Theosophist. Indeed, we were as blood-brothers; and even after he had lost his faith in Theosophy, and looked upon the T.S. with scorn, we kept in touch with occasional correspondence. In 1927 I tried hard to swing him lack into line, but that proved to be impossible. His painful experiences in the T.S., particularly after it had been defiled by the "trained clairvoyant," had embittered him against it and against the Occult Philosophy.
If affairs had moved smoothly in the T.S., Mr. Mead would have remained a steadfast Theosophist. He suffered intensely during the "Judge row," and later he accepted the teachings of the arch-faker who concocted Neo-Theosophy until the latter was accused of the grossest immorality. Mr. Mead wrote me that "the fellow" (as he referred to him) confessed his guilt to him and was put out of the Society. But when the arch-faker was re-admitted to the Society Mr. Mead withdrew from it, with his faith in Neo-Theosophy destroyed and also his faith in true Theosophy. He organized another Society, the Quest, and experimented with spirit-mediums and "sensitives". He, married Miss Laura Cooper, one of the Headquarters staff. Of her he wrote me in 1927: "The T.S., however, brought me one great and inestimable blessing, my darling wife - a white woman, straight and clean, who shared my sorrows and disappointments for twenty-five years. She left her pain-racked and devastated body two and a half years ago, and I hope and believe; (and I might even say know) has kept free of the whole brew of the 'occult' stuff on the other side and gone to a state of holiness, truth and goodness".
In his letters to me he always termed Theosophy "Toshophism" and Theosophists "Toshophists." He doubted the existence of Adepts and scorned Occultism. Once he wrote me: "Now, old man," (his favorite way of addressing me in the old days) "I don't know your present definition of 'Adept', but if that is what you prefer to call H.P.B. - then I'm not strong for 'Adeptship.' To me the Old Lady was at times, often enough in her life-span, a powerful medium .. . . After many years of reflection I am willing to admit that she saw physically the two 'Mahatmic' guys known by the initials K.H. and M. To the latter she had the devotion of a dog, a slavish and somewhat pitiable adoration. That anyone else of the Toshophite crowd knew them physically I very much doubt." And again: "H.P.B., in my opinion, my dear old friend, did not have the Nous - not, at any rate as that term is used by my dear old Trismegistic philosophisers. She had occasional mediumship, but she was not spiritually self-conscious." But according to those old philosophers the Nous is man's immortal Mind, his true Individuality; and he who has the Nous is necessarily an Adept. That H.P.B. had that spiritual consciousness I know positively; and every student should be able to recognize it in her writings. The sadly muddled state of Mr. Mead's mind (the Phren; not the. Nous!) is shown by his believing in the Nous while denying Adeptship, and by his calling H.P.B. a medium, when he knew that she was constantly warning her followers against mediumship, which she abominated. And what "medium", in all the cycle of Spiritualism, has ewer given out anything but twaddle; whereas H.P.B. placed before the world a vast treasure of spiritual, occult and philosophical teachings.
The defection of Mr. Mead, his turning against Theosophy, must be charged
[[[ Large photo here of HPB in wheelchair: J.M. Pryse H.P. Blavatsky G.R.S. Mead ]]]
against the karmic account of the arch-faker, the self-dubbed "trained clairvoyant," who polluted the T.S. with his fantastic and nonsensical Neo-Theosophy. Mr. Mead, when he came to discard that farrago of fakeries, failed to discriminate between the true and the false, and so rejected Theosophy as well. He was but one of hundreds whom the arch-faker has turned aside from the Path, many of them ruined, morally, physically and financially. But I doubt not that my dear old friend, George Mead, mentally clarified by that great Renovator, Death, and strengthened by a well-deserved Devachanic rest, will in his next earth-life return to the ranks of those who work to spread among mankind the sublime truths of Theosophy - the world's only hope. He sincerely aspired to learn the true philosophy of life, even when misled and wandering away from it, and that aspiration will place his feet again upon the Path.
- James Morgan Pryse.
The death of George R.S. Mead occurred on September 30, in London, where he had his residence. He was seventy years of age. To the present generation of the members of the Theosophical Society he is barely more than a name, but he played an important part in the early days of the movement, being one of the household staff at Avenue Road when H.P.B. was alive, acting as her secretary, and largely responsible for her printing, as Mr. Pryse intimates in his article. He was essentially a scholar or schoolman, and took the intellectual view of his work, apparently fearful of trusting himself to faculties that had failed so many of his comrade's. He has made him-
self an international reputation as an authority on Gnostic literature and tradition, and certainly his Hermes, Echoes from the Gnosis, his Fragments of a Faith Forgotten and other of his writings, republished from The Quest deserve attention. His Simon Magus, Pistis Sophia and similar works were inspired by Madame Blavatsky but he repudiated the early editions written under her influence, and produced later versions of his own.
Mr. Mead was born in 1863, son of the late Col. Robert Mead, H. M. Ordnance. He married in 1899 Laura Mary Cooper, daughter of Frederick Cooper, C.B., LC.S. She died in 1924. Mr. Mead was educated at King's School, Rochester, and took his M.A. at St. John's College, Cambridge. His connection with the Theosophical Society and Madame Blavatsky coloured all his early life, and his studies were directed into Gnostic channels through this association until after Madame Blavatsky's death and the subsequent events which led him to break altogether with the Society as related by Mr. Pryse. He then founded the quarterly magazine The Quest, a review of Gnostic, occult and mystical literature. This he ceased to issue a few yearn ago, when he published a valedictory address which may be remembered. His published works include Simon Magus, 1892; Orpheus, 1896; The Upanishads, 1896; Fragments of a Faith Forgotten, 1900; Apollonius of Tyana, 1901; The Gospels and the Gospel, 1902; Did Jesus Live 100 B.C.?, 1903; Thrice Greatest Hermes, (3 vols,.), 1906; Echoes from the Gnosis (11 vols.), 1907; The World Mystery, 1908; Some Mystical Adventures, 1910; Quests Old and New, 1913; The Subtle Body, 1919; Pistis Sophia, 1921; The Gnostic John the Baptizer, 1924; The Sacred Dance in Christendom, 1926.
We hear that Mrs. Col. Cleather and her party have reached their destination at Tsining, near the Kum Bum monastery, having gone the last lap by airplane.
DEATH OF W. H. GRIFFITHS
Mr. William Henry Griffiths, passed away from this earth on the 9th of October 1933 and the Theosophical Movement has thereby suffered a far greater loss than can be generally known among your readers. I speak, of course, from the limited viewpoint of physical plane appearances. In reality the Cause for which the T.S. was founded can never lose the service of anyone devoted to its welfare into whatever state of consciousness such a soul may have entered. Mr. Griffiths has often told me of his belief that those who desire to return quickly to the fighting line on this earth will not be held long by the selfish bliss of Devachan. That was his expressed wish and no one who knows anything of Mr. Griffiths recent activities can doubt its sincerity for though he knew that his days on earth were shortened by every effort he demanded of his worn out body yet he never spared himself in his work for mankind.
After partially recovering from a very severe illness which prevented him from taking any active part in affairs for nearly four years, he astonished us all by taking up his lodge work again with all his old devotion and ability. From that time in February of last year to within a few days of his passing he was present with only on. or two exceptions, at every meeting held at our lodge-room. His influence, however, was by no means confined to theosophical circles. Even his wife was unaware of the number of people of all sorts and conditions who looked to him for sympathy and advice until expressions of bereavement continued to pour in from every side during the days that followed his leaving them.
Mr. Griffiths cared not a straw for popularity nor for any sort of personal reward for he was one of those rare individuals whose devotion to duty and adherence to principle in all circumstances and in every phase of life yielded the strongest motives for his every decision
and every act. But there was nothing austere, gloomy or bigoted in the manner of his following the course of duty. On the contrary his cheerful optimism and faith in the strength of righteousness often imbued the hearts of his coworkers with courage at times when there seemed to be cause for depression or disappointment.
Mr. Griffiths was born in Manchester, England, in the year 1873. In 1897 he joined the Liverpool Lodge of the T.S. whose headquarters were at New York and president had been W.Q. Judge, and acted as its secretary until 1900 whey he went to Point Loma as a student where he remained for ten years. During that time he established the photographic and engraving department and trained a staff of young men to carry on the work. Having made certain discoveries he decided to leave Mme. Tingley but had the greatest difficulty in carrying out his intention. Eventually, however, he reached England once more and soon afterwards married Miss Louisa Stanway who was well known in Manchester as an ardent student of the philosophy.
In 1913 he, with his wife, returned to San Diego. He joined the Adyar T.S. and soon after accepted the presidentship of the San Diego Lodge which he retained for five years. Among other activities this Lodge maintained a weekly "S.D." class which was conducted by Mr. Griffiths, and numbered as many as eighty to one hundred members.
In 1918 he almost succumbed to a terrible illness. Dr. Turnbull, the astrologer, told him that he could not possibly survive for many days if he remained under the adverse influences of that part of the world. He was carried on board a steamer and brought to Victoria, and he and his family settled at Brentwood, about fifteen miles outside that city. Here he gradually recovered sufficient health to enable him to take up once more his beloved work for the cause of theosophy.
He started, a "Secret Doctrine" class and became president of the Victoria Lodge of the T.S. in Canada, and held that office until the formation of the Victoria Independent T.S. of which he was again president until ill health forced him to retire from active life. For the second time his life hung for many days by a thread that threatened to snap with every labored breath, but his determined will to live saved him to earn the gratitude of many weary souls whom he helped with his advice and sympathy in their times of sorrow or perplexity.
From that second serious illness, however, he never really recovered; it was only by the force of his will that his body was kept going, and it finally collapsed on Friday the 6th of October. In the evening of that day he was showing a group of photographers gathered to meet him in a room of the Empress Hotel a new apparatus he had set up. Suddenly he fell to the ground unconscious. He was taken to St. Joseph's Hospital where he died on the following Monday without having regained consciousness.
A public service was conducted in the chapel of a "funeral parlor" by Mr. G.S. Carr of the Victoria Lodge of the T.S. It was of the simplest character: Mr. Carr read from the books that had been for so long studied and loved by Mr. Griffiths, including passages from Emerson ands Walt Whitman. There was a solo on the cello and the song "Over the Harbour Bar" who were great friends of Mr. Griffiths. [[sic]] The body was cremated at Vancouver where another group of sorrowing friends gathered to meet Mrs. Griffiths and her daughter Margaret at the final disposal of the deserted, physical vehicle.
Besides his widow and daughter, Mr. Griffiths leaves one son, Garth, who is teaching at his first school situated in the far north of British Columbia. In a letter recently received by his mother he says that he has become really interested in Theosophy and is studying it regularly with a friend of about his own age. It is good to think of these young men preparing
without compulsion to carry on the Movement.
Mr. Griffiths has always stood firmly for the pure Blavatsky message, and in this he has been upheld by his wife, the brave comrade who was indeed a true helpmate through all the vicissitudes of their married life. Before closing this inadequate sketch of my friend's life and work I must refer to two outstanding characteristics of his nature that pertain to true greatness: his fearlessness and his happiness. Perhaps these two are but aspects of the same quality. Neither the uncertainties of poverty, of which at times he had his full share, nor the shadow of approaching death could daunt him or cloud the happiness of his spirit.
- W.B. Pease.
Victoria, D.C., Oct. 1933.
DR. BESANT'S WORK IN INDIA
"The Times of India" of Bombay, one of the leading newspapers of India, but one that represents the interests of the English community, and so might have been expected to pay only a grudging tribute to Dr. Besant, wrote what follows on September 22, 1933. It is a most accurate description of her work in India.
By the death of Mrs. Annie Besant after a lingering illness, India has lost one of its greatest champions in the cause of political freedom, the Empire a notable figure, and Theosophy one of its greatest exponents. There are many facets to Mrs. Besant's career, but the one of widest interest to this country was her tireless advocacy of India's right to Home Rule within the Empire. To the realization of than object within a measurable distance of time she subordinated everything else, unmindful alike of what her associates in the world of Theosophy felt about her incursion into controversial politics, or of what a section of Indians themselves thought of a foreign born woman trying to lay down their ideal for them. We are too near events to judge in the correct perspective the extent to which Mrs. Besant's whirlwind campaign really helped the country's cause, but there can be no denying the greatness and constructive nature of her work. Her claim that India was her adopted land made an excellent appeal to the imagination of thousands of Indians. Her powers of organization and oratory, her skill as a journalist and her knowledge of the correct methods of agitation learned in England at the feet of Bradlaugh, accomplished the rest and gave her a hold on the intellectual section of the community, far more powerful in its ultimate effect than the one which Mr. Gandhi has been trying to establish over the masses.
Mrs. Besant succeeded to the extent she did because her ideals and theories left no room for doubt. The Home Rule she contemplated was Dominion Status within the Empire. She had no use for people who indulged in talk of independence. Her political programme had a social as well as a religious background and she insisted on the preservation of India's ancient traditions and culture, seeking only to adapt the western democratic system to modern Indian conditions. She would not hear of dispossessing the Princes or abolishing their order, and actually walked out from a convocation of Benares Hindu University as a protest against certain observation derogatory of the Princes made by Mr. Gandhi. Her Home Rule movement did far more to consolidate the forces of nationalism in this country than the Congress had achieved in the preceding thirty years. The Great War was her opportunity. Side by side with day-to-dad insistence on the righteousness of the British cause and on the obligations which rested on this country to give its best in seeing the struggle through, she organized the Home Rule movement. In a misguided moment the Madras, Government interned her and this "martyrdom" brought her at one bound to the forefront, and compelled the late Mr. Montagu to order her unconditional release in order to ensure a peaceful
atmosphere during his visit to India for the preliminary inquiry which preceded the Reforms Act of 1919.
Mrs. Besant repaid that gesture of goodwill by supporting the Montagu-Chelmsford scheme through thick and thin as the first step in the transfer of power to Indian hands. But she was unable to control the forces which she had let loose. Militant Indian nationalism had no more use for her; her power and influence gradually began to wane. But with rare courage she kept up at times almost single-handed, the fight with Mr. Gandhi's doctrines of non-co-operation and mass lawlessness. On the morrow of a particularly ferocious outbreak of mob fury, directly traceable to non-co-operation, she did not hesitate to declare in the columns of New India that "brickbats must be answered with bullets". Deft wing nationalists never forgave her for this advocacy of strong action on the part of Government, but subsequent events proved that she was right in her appreciation of the terrible dangers of mass lawlessness. Mrs. Besant tried hard to prevent the national movement from flowing into wrong channels, and her failure in that direction mush be regarded as the greatest tragedy of heir amazingly varied life.
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N. W. J. HAYDON
THE CANADIAN THEOSOPHIST
The Organ of the Theosophical Society in Canada
- Published on the 15th of every month.
- Editor - Albert A. S. Smythe.
- Entered at Hamilton General Post Office as Second-class matter.
- Subscription, One Dollar a Year.
OFFICERS OF THE T.S. IN CANADA
- Dudley W. Barr, Apt. 34, 42 Hubbard Blvd., Toronto.
- Felix A. Belcher, 250 N. Lisgar St., Toronto.
- James E. Dobbs, Apt 14, 1251 St. Mark St., Montreal.
- Frederick B. Housser, 10 Glen Gowan Ave., Toronto.
- Reginal Thornton, 83 Isabella Street, Toronto
- Wash. E. Wilks, F.R.C.S., 925 Georgia St. W., Vancouver.
- Cecil Williams, 49 East 7th Street, Hamilton. Ont.
- Albert E. S. Smythe, 33 Forest Avenue, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada.
Orders are now being taken for the second volume of the complete works of Madame H.P. Blavatsky, price $4.00. Messrs Rider & Co., London, England, are the publishers.
Title page and Index to volume xiii are now available for those who wish to bind their copies of the Magazine. Bound copies are to be had at $2 each, and all the preceding volumes at the same price. Only a few complete sets remain.
Mr. Alvin Kuhn has had a most successful lecture season in Toronto, extending over ten lectures, and four in Hamilton. A great deal of interest was awakened, and many strangers were attracted. Dr. Kuhn also gave two talks over the radio on the Sunday evenings.
We trust the members will take an active interest in the nomination, which the National Executive endorses, of Mr. Ernest Wood as a candidate for the Presidency. Mr. Woods is at present Recording Secretary at Adyar, and is thoroughly familiar with the work of the Society. Members are requested to use their influence and vote in his favour.
We regret to record the death of Mr. W.H. Griffiths of Victoria, a loyal Theosophist and an earnest and efficient worker in the ranks of those who disseminate the teachings of The Secret Doctrine. He was for ten years at Point Loma and established a fine engraving and photographic plant there. We are glad to have Mr. Pease's tribute to his memory.
We reproduce the photograph of Madame Blavatsky in her wheel-chair as she was in Avenue Road in the years before her death, with James M. Pryse on her right hand and George R. S. Mead on her left. This picture appeared in The Canadian Theosophist in one of our early volumes, but it is peculiarly appropriate now that Mr. Mead has died and Mr. Pryse has written his obituary notice.
The death of Mrs. E.M. Oliver removes probably the oldest member of the Toronto T.S. at the age of 84. She began as a Spiritualist and was well-known in that cult and in demand for lecture work. She died on October 12, after a few years of gradually failing health. But she attended all important meetings and was always a serious and interested student. The Lodge has been notified by a Trust Company that she left it $100 in her will.
Mr. C. Jinarajadasa left Adyar in the middle of October for a year of absence. He goes first to Italy and then to Brazil and other South American countries. Miss Irene Prest has taken his place as Secretary of the International Fellowship of Arts and Crafts at Stamford House, Wimbledon Common, London, S.W. 19, England. The object of the Fellowship is to work to develop the sense of beauty in, all
activities of life, and to study and realize the spirit of unity underlying the arts.
We desire to call attention to a statement by Dr. G. de Purucker in The Theosophical Forum (Point Loma) for July which has just reached us. It is in reply to a question regarding the esoteric succession of teachers in the Society or Movement. We do not propose to enter into the discussion here, nor are we prepared to say that we accept everything that Dr. G. de Purucker advances, but his statement clears the ground and cannot be neglected in any future discussion of the theme.
The new radio campaign in Toronto has gone over "with a bang" as they say. Dr. Kuhn gave the first two talks, Mr. Fred Housser the third and Mr. Lawren Harris the fourth. It is no disparagement to the others to say that Mr. Harris's address was a model of clear expression, lucid but condensed reasoning and convincing statement. A great many enquiries are coming in as a consequence of the radio talks; which are over CKNC on Sunday at 6 p.m. A committee has been appointed to organize the talks which will continue till the last week of January, and longer if supported.
It is with some pain that we feel constrained to protest against the publications in Theosophical magazines of "spook" messages, as alleged from Mrs. Besant. Has she, and has the Society she presided over, and which she warned against such practices, sunk so low that Adyar cannot refuse to put it on the basis of an ordinary gathering of bhuta hunters? The newspapers attribute the cable to one of the heads of the Liberal Catholic Church and call it a "spirit message". It is more than ever necessary for members of the T.S. to study the Key to Theosophy. Adyar is straying far away from its first love.
Already there have been some responses to the offer of the National Executive to reinstate inactive members on payment of the dues for the current year. We believe many will wish to take advantage of this offer which holds good till Christmas. We have had a number of letters sent out with this offer, returned marked "left" or "unknown" and would be obliged if Secretaries would notify us of changes of address, or convey this offer to their inactive members. There will be a number of members struck off the mailing lists this month for non-payment of dues. The local officials should see that this state of affairs is. remedied.
We hear that Dr. Clymer is getting out a reply to the ridiculous pamphlet issued by some AMORC supporter, purporting to be a report of proceedings in a California Court where Canadian citizens living in Canada, without notification or any knowledge of the proceedings, were found guilty of something or other and fined One Dollar each. Some startling disclosures are promised and legal proceedings may be taken by some Canadians. We do not think it worth while to trouble over such evidently uninformed statements. It is a pity the AMORC does not stick to genuine Rosicrucian teachings so far as they are known. Truth needs no elaboration nor any decoration.
The Theosophist for October is a splendid tribute to Mrs. Besant. We believe Mr. Jinarajadasa has been responsible in recent months for the editorial work on this magazine and it certainly does him credit. Unlike some of our friends in relation to The Canadian Theosophist we read every word of the Adyar magazine and are able to disagree thoroughly with some of it without getting mad or refusing to look inside the cover. A lot of our members throughout the world have still a lot to learn about real tolerance, which includes the desire to understand. These memorial numbers for Col. Olcott last year and the present one for Mrs. Besant might well be bound together, a permanent tribute and memoir.
Some notes of an Orpheus Lodge discussion on Transmutation:
Everyone has a certain definite amount of energy at his disposal. It represents our working capital, the sole means we possess of accomplishing our life purpose. It is just energy, vital energy, which can be frittered away or conserved and put into what we determine. Transmutation of this energy is the source of all power. Ordinarily, we all of us allow a large proportion of our energy to be drawn from us without any permanent or worth while return. We alternate between high spirits when energy fairly bubbles out of us, to periods of flatness and depression; we allow ourselves to be carried away in temporary enthusiasms big and little, and by worry, fears, irritability, anxiety, etc., deplete ourselves. All this is irretrievable loss of our vital force. The first step in transmutation is suppression; to prevent our energy from escaping through those well worn channels, purely instinctive for the most part which we have built in the past and which form the line of least resistance for energy to flow. But suppression alone is useless; it gives rise to an accumulation of energy which sooner or later bursts forth explosively through one or more of the ordinary channels, as anyone knows who has bottled up irritability and temper far a time.
The second and most important step in transmutation is to create new channels through which the held up energy is to be directed. This is done through the imagination. By the imagination, the image making faculty, a creative power, and the greatest man possesses, he visualizes clearly and vitally the one or more values which he wishes to make the channel for his energy. There are three kinds of mental images. There is the vivid image which is hazy and indeterminate in outline, but rich in feeling. The high emotional content of such images give rise to a false sense of clarity and understanding, so that we often hear people say: - I understand it perfectly but cannot explain it very clearly. The second kind of image is clear cut and well defined in all its details but lacks life and force. It gives rise to precise and logical, but somewhat uninspired thinking, and the images lack compulsive force so that though the wise course is clearly seen, somehow nothing is done about it. This kind of image is the cause of our all too-frequent failure to carry through our good resolutions.
The third kind of image has to be just as clear and definite as the last, but then it has to be vitalized. We have to fill it with our life and vitality so that it becomes living and forceful, a dynamic force which compels action. This third kind of image is the one we must strive to make. When we can pull ourselves together and create images of this sort at will, images so clear and forceful that they compel their own fulfillment after the original enthusiasm may have passed, then indeed is the 'ball at our foot'. From one angle all the effort of the neophyte can be summed up as the striving to perfect this power. By his trained will he prevents his energy rushing out ands pays it out consciously, using no more than is required to do what is at hand and so maintains a head of energy which he directs into those channels which his imagination has created. As the result of this process he builds power and character and becomes, for the first time a real individual. But the process is the same whether we seek power over others, or that far greater power " . . . . .which shall make him. appear as nothing in the eyes of men." - Secretary.
Spirit, or the unalloyed emanation of the ONE - the latter forming with the seventh and sixth principles the highest triad - neither of the two emanations are capable of assimilating but that which is good, pure and holy; hence, no sensual, material or unholy, recollection can follow the purified memory of the Ego to the regions of Bliss. - The Mahatma Letters, page 105.
KRISHNAMURTI TELLS WHY
"People actually worshiped my picture. It was wrong. Divinity is a living, dynamic thing which lies within the individual. Man is divine. Life is divine. Immortality is the only thing that matters."
With these words Krishnamurti, the sometime ward of the late Annie Besant and reputed Hindu Messiah, explained why he had dissolved one of the greatest organizations in the world, the Order of the Star, and had become a beggar, when he could have had a castle in Holland and $10,000 a week at Hollywood.
When Mrs. Besant died, on the afternoon of Sept. 20 at Adyar, near Madras, India, Theosophists all over the world wondered what had become of her protegee, the Madanapalli schoolboy, one of the thirteen sons of a Madras judge, who had made two journeys around the world with her as the New Messiah.
It was soon discovered that the former New Messiah had slipped quietly out of India early in August and has just as quietly slipped into England on Sept. 18, where he was found a week later in meditation by a representative of The Sunday Express of London, at Godalming, in Surrey, as the guest of Lady Emily Lutyens, wife of the famous architect.
Roused From Reverie
He was roused from his reverie in a "very beautiful garden" by the abrupt question:
"Well. Mahatma, what are you going to do now?"
"What am I doing now?" he muttered in answer. "Well, I am just living. I am no longer the head of or connected with any organization. I am as free as the air. I am a beggar now. Don't be surprised, my dear friend. It is nothing to be ashamed of. I roam from country to country, a beggar living first with one friend and then with another. I have no home, no property. I have no money in the bank.
"And what of it? It is not because I cannot possess anything. Had I wished for wealth I could now be an exceedingly rich man. For years people showered offers of money on me. I was offered a magnificent castle in Holland with 200 acres of beautiful country. I was offered #2,000 a week in Hollywood. I could have had a beautiful temple in which to live.
"I live for one thing only - immortality."
Teaches As He Roams
"Have you then retired from the theosophical life?" he was asked.
"By no means," he replied. "As I travel, I try to teach those with whom I came in contact the true key to happiness -the intellectual life."
He spoke of Annie Besant and of how she had adapted him, educated him, and then startled the world by introducing him as the coming Messiah."
He shrugged his shoulders,.
"For a while, while my outlook was maturing, I accepted the homage of my followers, but otherwise it did not matter. I never gave it a thought."
"Do you still think you are the Messiah?"
"I neither refute it nor claim it."
"Then why did you renounce the position and dissolve the organization?"
His answer was the statement about the adoration of his portrait. - New York Times, Oct. 22, 1933.
DR. A. B. KUHN'S VISIT TO TORONTO
Toronto Lodge has started on a new cycle of activity. The outward and visible sign was the great interest shown in the series of Special Lectures given by Dr. Alvin B. Kuhn of Columbia University. For ten consecutive evenings large audiences became aware of the dynamic power of research in Christian origins.
It was an unforgettable experience, to hear one who has the spirit of enthusiasm for Theosophy supported by overwhelming evidence that cannot be denied. Dr. Kuhn
is a worthy successor to G.R.S. Mead, J.M. Pryse and others who in the early days of our movement gave to Theosophy scholarship and the dignity of intelligent co-operation with the laws of nature.
He stressed particularly during the lectures the need of presenting Theosophy as the core and kernel of Christianity, and intimated than it is the only way to save our western civilization from chaos, and that heretofore this has been neglected by the Society at large. He said, "It is the business of enlightened Theosophy to lift this weight of gross literal dogmatism from off the modern imagination and conscience at whatever cost. The human soul is itself bound on the cross of gross superstition so long as these crude notions dominate the conscious and subconscious thought of modern man. The light of the true spiritual Gnosis of olden times must be cast into the dark nooks and corners of modern thinking, and disperse the mists of such errant and arrant doctrinism."
In all fairness to Toronto Lodge, however, it must be stated, we have many students who have made this particular aspect important to the understanding of Theosophy both in lecture and class work.
The series of lectures given in Toronto were so important as a whole that it is difficult to estimate them without considering them as a dramatic sequence of spiritual force. Comments were frequent in regard to the valuable data disclosed in "The Myth of the Sun God" and "The Lost Meaning of Death", where Christianity was traced back to Egyptian and Chaldean Pagan sources. In "The Lost Meaning of Death", Dr. Kuhn became eloquent, and with telling force, eyes flashing with conviction, he presented the Egyptian "Book of the Dead" as spiritual symbology and as being ingeniously designed to instruct us in the deepest of spiritual truths.
The series can only be described as the triumphant declaration of great truths, eloquent with the conviction of careful study and research. Would that the Society had many more like Dr. Kuhn, and that all Lodges had the privilege of hearing what Toronto heard. Toronto is indeed grateful to Dr. Kuhn. - H.L.H.
CHOOSING A NEW PRESIDENT
This is perhaps one of the most momentous acts that the members of the Theosophical Society are ever called upon to perform. For the Society is an organization brought into being for a very definite, serious and important role; no less important than that of trail blazer for humanity as a whole, regardless of politics, economics, creeds or customs. In this connection we would do well to read the last chapter of "The Key to Theosophy" so carefully, and earnestly that our choice may be wisely made when the call comes to mark our ballot. Answering a question as to the future of the Theosophical Society we are told: -
"Its future will depend almost entirely upon the degree of selflessness, earnestness, devotion, and last but not least, on the amount of knowledge and wisdom possessed by those members, on whom it will fall to carry on the work, and to direct the Society after the death of the founders."
Our first choice, for good or ill, has run its course. This was made, largely, by a generation that has gone. The second one confronts us like the Sphinx of old threatening our destruction if we choose wrongly. But far worse than any destruction of ourselves if a wrong choice be made is the effect upon the next generation.
Brothers, you and I are responsible for that. Shall we enter upon it lightly; or shall we try to rid ourselves, as far as may be, of our personal preferences, limitations and prejudices, and then with a clear sense of our responsibility write our choice on the dotted line?
There is in this not the remotest idea of indicating for whom we should vote, but only that now and until that fateful moment we prepare ourselves for it. Again, and yet again, let us read that last chapter in "The Key to Theosophy".
- Felix A. Belcher.
IDOLATRY PREVALENT IN THE T. S.
It is very difficult to get rid of idolatry. The worship of images; of people instead of principles, of leaders instead of inner inspiration, of books rather than thought, is similar to the worship of gold as money instead of the real values which money or gold represents. We are always accepting the shadow for the substance, and then finding fault with the shadow for not being a reality. This is what is the matter with the Theosophical Society. It is under the Great Illusion. It warships idols.
For this reason "The Talking Image of Urur" was written, and for the same reason it was tabooed by the authorities although Madame Blavatsky printed it in her own magazine. There are still talking images at Urur, which is the name of the little river that runs by Adyar. And there are still worshipers of them all over the world. Can we free the Society from their influence? Can we free those who worship these idols or must we leave them to their fate, the fate of those who go down in the deep?
I feel that there are things that must be said boldly even though many object, few listen, and some are offended. We must make some effort to redeem the Society from the decay that has seized upon it, and restore it to the Path its founder and its Founders marked out for it. Personally I am weary of controversies; but so many ask to be told the why and the wherefore of what has happened and of what is likely to happen, that it would not be following the Golden Rules to refuse to respond.
What a disheartening message it is from Mr. Jinarajadasa to say that he has nominated George Arundale to be President of the Theosophical Society. George Arundale calls himself a Bishop of the Liberal Catholic Church, and if there could be anything more misrepresentative of Theosophy one knows not where to find it. We present to the public an ecclesiastic of a bogus church, denounced by all contemporary churches as such and as having spurious orders, and we expect to gather Christendom into a fellowship of faiths by such means. If George Arundale had the desire to have real Theosophy presented to the public he would convey himself away out of sight.
Moreover, from a purely worldly business point of view, it means ruin to the Society to place him in a position to control its finances. He is a visionary without any conception of the value of money. Ask Australia or any National Society over which he has presided. How Mr. Jinarajadasa could think of having him as President one knows not.
Of course he will be a slavish subject of the outer head of the E.S.T., the Jesuitical body which rules the Theosophical Society through fear and idolatry. Anything further from the aims and ideals of the Masters it would be difficult to imagine. The members are deluded with images clothed, like angels of light, and the end of it all is darkness and disappointment, as too many can testify. The only virtue it possesses is to be a test, which, if it can be passed, and the subtle lethal poison rejected, the victim may escape and renew his strength.
Mr. Jinarajadasa gives his reasons for deserting Adyar at this crisis. He may say it is not desertion but expedience. Either way it matters not. He has gone away and left the hope of many that things might not be quite so bad if he remained, might be better indeed, if he stood neutrally and followed the middle Path of the Buddha, and allowed some independent beam of light to shine through the darkness.
Mr. Warrington is not likely to stand in apposition to Mr. Arundale, it is believed, though as a business man his control would be welcome, and no other candidate has been mentioned. The Canadian National Society, however, feels that some protest must be made, if only to let members know that they may find a Way of their own, and not have to follow any Leader or worship an idol. The Executive Com-
mittee have requested. Mr. Ernest Wood, Recording Secretary at Adyar, to stand as a candidate for the Presidency, and he has consented.
He is therefore nominated by the General Secretary of Canada for the office. It need not be supposed that he represents everything that Canada has stood for, but in a general way we believe he is on the slide of independence and common sense, of cool judgment and broad tolerance; of liberty from the fads and follies of personal whims and caprices; of support of cultivation of the three objects of the Theosophical Society which are scarcely heard of except in formal pronouncement, or in such psychic humbug as should make the angels weep.
He would free Adyar, we believe from the hypnotic thrall under which it has lain for the last quarter of a century. He would restore the study of the Secret Doctrine and the literature of the early days of the Movement to the members, and let them taste of the real Wisdom therein contained. He would make Brotherhood a practical policy, and seek to bring all humanity into communication with Truth, unclouded by the astral insanities of a charlatan.
Mr. Wood is young and can give a good many years of his life to Theosophy. We feel he will be glad to do this, and not prate of sacrifice. He has written some books. We commend his "Natural Theosophy" to those who would understand his point of view. He is familiar with the procedure at Adyar and has already made various efforts towards a better administration of its affairs, and would prevent its property being prostituted to the uses of other parasitical movements which cannot flourish by their own efforts but seek like leeches to draw sustenance from the Theosophical Society. He has a correct sense of the relation of the Masters to the Movement and to the members.
He would say, as H.P.B. wrote: "Of teachers there are many; the MASTER-SOUL is one, Alaya, the Universal Soul. Live in that MASTER as ITS ray in thee. Live in thy fellows as they live in It."
We ask your support for Mr. Wood as president.
THE HIDDEN WISDOM
When Mr. Krishnamurti visited Toronto and spoke in the Theosophical Hall he was particularly anxious to have it understood throughout the city and displayed in the advertising that he was not speaking under the auspices of The Theosophical Society. For him, the Society bore some taint.
He told me that one could not belong to it without having a bias, a prejudice, something that separated one from the rest of the world. I presume, something that coloured one's outlook, and therefore to be put aside. It was only when I began to consider his experiences and his own actions that I fully realized what the Society meant to him.
It meant the Star organization. When he saw what that meant, he promptly smashed it. He saw, doubtless, what the Liberal Catholic Church meant, another barrier to Universal Brotherhood, and he identified it with the Theosophical Society and tabooed both. He saw the Round Table, and Co-Masonry, and all the other off-shoots that had been allowed to grow up around The Theosophical Society, and he lumped them all together and left the Society. He was apparently astonished to hear in Toronto that our Theosophical platform was an open one and had no barriers.
But he could not easily get away from his early impressions of the Society, and these were of barriers up in every direction to the general race of men to whom he wished to appeal, to whom he wished to be a Brother. And as he saw the Theosophical Society, so the public see the Theosophical Society today.
Now, who is responsible far these differentiations and divisions - these barriers to Unity? We have been denounced in Can-
ada for doing what Mr. Krishnamurti has been unable to help doing, seeing the Society as he has from his youth up. We in Canada have had a different experience. The Theosophical Society for us has been a Universal Brotherhood, in which we sought not to erect new barriers, but to open doors through those which already existed.
It is not possible to gather Christians into conference with Buddhists; and Brahmins, Parsees and Mohammedans, if first of all they are required to recognize what they regard as a mockery of their own Churches. Brother Arundale might consider that, and see if the Divine Wisdom is not more important than his new paraphernalia to dress it up. Brother Leadbeater might consider this and see if The Secret Doctrine is not more important than the Lives of Alcyone. And so on. The Hidden Wisdom is sufficiently concealed already without making new garments to disguise it further.
This is what Mr. Krishnamurti has seen, and why he shuns The Theosophical Society and all its works. If the Society had continued on its original lines, its simple effort to realize and create a nucleus of the Universal Brotherhood of humanity, he would not have found it necessary to wipe its dust off his feet.
It is true, we have subsidiary objects. Sometimes we make them, not subsidiary, but our chief objects. At Adyar the Third object is much more important than the First, and has been for twenty-five years past. No wonder there are misconceptions about the Society.
We have an opportunity now to go back to first principles. They are simple. Love of the brethren. Love of Humanity. Service. There remaineth these three, says the Great Apostle - Faith, which is enthusiasm, Hope, which is the creative imagination; and Love, and the greatest of these is Love. That is the Hidden Wisdom, hidden by the outer garments of our follies.
The two great commandments that Jesus gave his disciples were to love the Master, the God, Alaya, as it is called, with all our hearts and minds and souls and strength, and secondly, to love our neighbours as ourselves. It does not mean that we are to love their sins and stupidities, any more than when we love our children we have also to love their naughtiness, their perversity, their tempers and their faults.
Our adult brethren have their weaknesses also, and we are not required to love these or condone their errors, but we are enjoined to love our fellows as they live in that Master-Soul, Alaya, or God, or the Great Law, or by whatever name it has been given us to recognize it. If our Theosophical Society showed forth this foundation as the basis of its work and its aspirations we do not believe Mr. Krishnamurti nor the public he seeks to interest would hold us in scorn and disdain as so many have done.
As one of our wise men has written: "As we are striving to reach God, we must learn to be as near like Him as possible. He loves and hates not; so we must strive to regard the greatest vice as being something we must not hate while we will not engage in it, and then we may approach that state where we will know the greater love that takes in good and evil men alike."
WHY I DO NOT STAND FOR PRESIDENT
For some time past, I have had requests and appeals that I should stands as a candidate for the post of President of the Society. Some have taken as a matter of course that I shall be the next President. I desire to explain why I do not propose to be a candidate.
So far as I am concerned, the matter is very simple. For me the question is: How can I serve the Cause of Theosophy in the best way? I have been the Vice-President of the Society for seven years (1921-28) and during the last two years and a half I have been the "Deputy" of the President
at the Headquarters at Adyar. My tasks have been such as our late President performed at Adyar: first, the supervision of all the departments of the Headquarters Estate and Community, the editorship of The Theosophist, advising in the management of the Theosophical Publishing House and the Vasanta Press. So I know fairly well what are the duties of the President.
But while I have performed these tasks as Dr. Besant's Deputy, many other kinds of work have necessarily been left undone. I am the recipient of hundreds of letters each year asking for counsel, guidance or comfort. I am a Theosophist not for myself, but to give what those who need ask of me. But during the last three years at Adyar, all my strength and time have been so taken up by Adyar duties that I have left undone most necessary tasks. The accumulation of correspondence on my tables has been appalling; yet I had to leave most of the calls for help unanswered, because I had to do my utmost to carry out Dr. Besant's instructions, to make Adyar a "Flaming Centre". Were I President, it would mean that one part of my work would be left undone. These appeals for instruction and help come to me in four languages, and except the replies in English, which I can dictate to my helpers, all the others have to be written by hand.
Also, I have been especially directed by Dr. Besant to give all possible help to her successor as the Head of her Esoteric School, Bishop Leadbeater. He is 87 years old, and while still active needs many assistants, for he is not robust.
Furthermore, I am most particularly keen to develop a work which I feel certain will be one of the glories later on of the Theosophical Society: I refer to the wonderful work in Occult Chemistry, done by Dr. Besant and Bishop Leadbeater. The latter is willing to do all he still can, but I must be his assistant. For several years the third edition of Occult Chemistry has been delayed. I believe that after him I shall myself be able to make direct observations, provided I can be left a little free to work along that especial line.
Dr. Besant worked from 6.30 a.m. to 8.15 p.m., with half an hour's interval for her midday meal, and half or three-quarters of an hour for tea and chat. She took her supper at 8.30. If the work at Adyar has to be done efficiently, the next President will have to imitate her in this matter of hours of work. I know I cannot be so herculean. On July 30 of last year as I put the final corrections in the last page of the Olcott number of The Theosophist, and the Press was waiting for my proof, I thought I should fall off my chair, for my heart was doing strange things. Matters since then have not improved and now many times each day I know exactly where my heart is in my anatomy. Two years ago I put a temporary handrail to the Western staircase of Headquarters - the easier of the two - to help Dr. Besant to pull herself up (our simple lift was not then installed). I am thankful that the handrail put up for her still remains. One day, as she was painfully pulling herself up I said to encourage her that H.P.B. used to come up that staircase. She replied in a pathetic voice: "Oh, poor dear!" It is my privilege now to think of both as I come up that staircase.
It is not as if today no one else were fit for Presidential tasks but myself! To think so would show little realization of what Theosophy has done for our workers.
The above are some of the reasons why I shall not be a candidate. Yet I shall give more fully than ever the best of myself to the cause of Theosophy and the greatness of our Theosophical Society.
- C. Jinarajadasa.
There is no contradiction in saying that the ego, once reborn in the Devachan, "retains for a certain time proportionate to its earth life a complete recollection of his (Spiritual) life on earth." Here again the omission of the word "Spiritual" alone produced a misunderstanding. - The Mahatma Letters, page 187.
THEOSOPHY AND THE MODERN WORLD
WAR AND EUROPE
By Lawren Harris
Storm Jameson, an Englishwoman, has written a book on war and civilization called, "No Time Like the Present", which has attracted considerable attention. In it she has left almost no phase of either war or civilization unnoticed. The book is written in terms of a mental autobiography, and is bitter, fearless, disillusioned and timely. She evidently suffered such anguish during the great war and after, that life seems now to her almost futile, and the future almost hopeless.
In the first hundred pages she gives an account of her early life and thereafter moves with an increasing acceleration into what is the real themes of the book; that which has impressed itself indelibly on her consciousness, the vast and terrible imbecility of modern war and the state of mind of a civilization that permits it.
Writing of the disillusionment of the younger generation just before the war, she says "We rebelled - the word rebelled is too strong for a change that cost us nothing in effort - against formal religion because of all that we supposed had taken cover behind it of greed, beastly cruelty, and fear".
"My distaste for all churches and sects" she continues, "except the society of friends, may be a legacy from that eager hour, or it may be no better than a matter of temperament, which makes it an utter impossibility for me to respect the fervor that amasses huge sums of money to build a cathedral in a city (Liverpool) which contains some of the foulest slums in England."
In looking at St. Mary's old church on the east cliff of old Whitby, it seems to her more beautiful than any other sight in the world, and she says, "when I look at it I don't think of the difficulty of believing in a church which does not believe in its founder."
These few quotations strike the key note of her character.
A Sad Cry.
Thinking of modern fiction she says, "If there seems a gap widening now, between life and fiction, it must be that there are certain deeper levels of experience, guessed at by many people, felt by them as existing and as finally important, on which the best advertised of our novelists are not living". Just so.
Then she states the predicament of her times in England, which however applies equally to most other countries, thus - "There exists for the multitude of us outside the Roman church and not wishing to relapse into it, no supreme value to which all of us, we writers, stock brokers, bankers, soldiers, must subordinate (if only in word) our smaller personal values, no embracing spiritual life to which the efforts of our personal lives are in a final account subdued."
"There is thus frustrated in us our deepest need. We suffer, in our kind, from the feeling of disintegration, of the final futility of life."
"In every sense, material (economic) and spiritual, we are starving in the midst of plenty."
This is a very sad cry. The reason perhaps, that they do not wish to relapse into the Roman church is that they feel it offers only a soporific uncreative comfort, which no awakened soul can possibly accept. Theosophy alone embodies the answer to this cry, as it alone not only suggests the way to those "deeper levels of experience" that Mrs. Jameson mentions as
being "finally important", but explains what they are and how they are related to our common life.
She then states the reason for the sad plight of civilization thus, "the value we exalt is one that has nothing to do with intelligence and spirit - it is material simply. It is to put the body, clothes and all, above the soul. It is to worship the corruptible rather than the incorruptible - what is dead above what lives. Today the stink of death is in all our nostrils. In so far as we have desired material success more than we have desired anything else - and the proof of our desires is in our deeds and not in our admirable sentiments - we all stink".
Thoughts on War.
When she thinks of the war to end war and of the polite gabblings of statesmen who are only too ready, "in the interests of economy and as a gesture towards their own academic preference for peace, to abolish arms, they can do without while retaining those they have a mind to", she remembers an old and very tired Austrian professor. He said that "a man died when the will of his body to resist death began failing and its will was transformed gradually, by the spreading apathy of its cells, into a will to death. Something of the sort," he said, "was happening now in Europe."
She thinks Europe is doomed to another war within five years. She says, "nothing indeed can avert it but a miracle, but the birth into the world of a new idea."
The Church and War.
She has a bitter lot to say against the church and the clergy in England. Indeed the truckling of the vicars of Christ to the god of war, or to expediency, was one of the sorriest exhibitions she encountered. She quotes bishops, deans and reverends, all piously mouthing admonitions to fight for the right, which is to say, for their own particular state, when the only suitable thing for every one of them to do was to cry, "In God's name, stop it".
She remarks that, "the alchemy of war produces other compounds as strange as a priest justifying war because it is Christlike and a scientist discovering that it improves the stock". Also, "it is a curious ands delicate speculation how much the church lost of her diminished authority by loaning it to the great war, and what she would have gained, in the respect of common men and women, if she had condemned it." And also this, "if usury, if poverty, if war, are ever abolished, no part of the credit for it will belong to a church which has condoned all three".
Hard words some may think, but nonetheless irrefutable. She quotes a number of returned soldiers who shared her disgust with the church. But out of "the dark trick that all these priests had played their founder she finds one voice speaking from the other side. This reverend cries, "the bankruptcy of Christendom is not the bankruptcy of Christ, nor its madness his. Christianity has somewhat forfeited by its automatic benediction of all wars the right to pronounce a blessing on any. It has lost authority to call any war right, because it has never dared to call any war wrong".
The State and War.
She says that, "in war-time reason is a crime against the state", and that we cover up the awful actualities of war with phrases, "about sacrifice, the fight to a finish and all that, the noise we make to save ourselves the anguish of thinking". And then she goes on to say, "no nation can be trusted to do justice to another, to its own loss. No nation can be trusted with the possession of one incendiary bomb. Chatter of equality in disarmament is, if you will forgive me, muck - the opportunism of impoverished governments not unwilling to knock an item or two off of Messrs. Krupp-Vickers bill. So long as nations live like mediaeval robber-barons, precariously on what each can snatch abroad, another Somme, will follow another Loos".
Non-Combatants and War.
She writes with white hot indignation of the safe bloodthirstiness of non-combat-
ants. It was generally noted during the last war that men fighting each other face to face were not really blood-thirsty, they merely had an awful duty to perform, but that the further people were from the slaughter the more blood-thirsty and vicariously brave they became, even the women, using phrases like, "sacrifice", "the last drop of blood", "Ah, my boy, if I were your age", and "I gave my son". This last phrase was a horror to the writer. It made her seek. She asks, "by what human right does a parent 'give' the innocent flesh of his son - to be torn, or his brains dashed out or his bowels and sexual organs to be pierced by white hot shells? Is not this precisely the act of parents who gave their children to be burned or their throats cut on stone altars? We call those savages, and congratulate ourselves on having progressed beyond such bloody-minded notions. The reasons we have to be congratulated are not clear".
The only difference, she notes, between those we call savages and ourselves is that the savages, "watched the deaths of their children", while "we finer skinned moderns are spared actual sight and sound. We prefer not to imagine what happens. We draw a decent veil over the grim indecency of field hospitals, and our men dying in shell holes and on the wire, eaten by rats".
She thinks our modern delicacy very odd, because she herself faces the actuality despite deep anguish, and makes it perfectly clear that until every one of us faces it also, there can be no hope for our deliverance.
One chapter of the book is given over to an interview she had with a research worker in chemistry, in which he discusses with enthusiasm the various poison gases and the almost unlimited possibilities of wholesale destruction yet untried combinations of these may contain. For sheer unadulterated callousness, the statements of this scientist are almost unsurpassable.
The Munition Makers.
The next quotation contains facts that everybody should know and is so sensible that we give it entire. "In 1921 a league of nations Commission found that armament firms are `active in fomenting war scares, have bribed their own and foreign governments, have disseminated false reports to stimulate armament expenditure, subsidized newspapers in their interest and organized armament rings through which the armaments race has been accentuated by playing off one country against another'." Now all this is perfectly natural and logical, and recognizing this, our author remarks, "But even your ordinary respectable sort of tradesman will struggle against you if you try to deprive him of his business. Surely it is unreasonable in us to think that Messrs. Krupp, Vickers, Schneider-Creusot, Imperial Chemicals Industries, and the rest will cut their throats to oblige us? Or that they will think morning and evening prayer the best way to use with a disarmament conference? Or that out of pity for China torn to pieces between rival condottieri, they will refuse to sell arms which are paid for with the sack of a province? No, no - what is really curious is the fact that the shells which kill French soldiers in Morocco are as likely as not to have been made by Frenchmen; there are no armament factories in Morocco; that Vickers supplied the shells with which the Turkish artillery did their business at Gallipoli, that in the great war France and Germany traded through Switzerland, bauxite and cyanamide sent from France to be used in killing Frenchmen, and magnetos from Germany for use in the French aeroplanes. Since these transactions - essential, unless the war was to come to a premature end - were hidden from the human 'effectives', these died without one satisfaction, a homely one, they could have had, A pity".
"In the end', the armament industry remains that portent - the only Great Power for whom war pays. The makers of armaments are above States; and their diplomacy moves outside the diplomacy of the embassies. The brave sentiments of pro-
fessors, the war sermons of priests, the droppings of irresponsible patriots, are not more dangerous to peace than quiet sensible business men, whose business is to lay waste countries". The merchant in power, completely miscast as ruler; using politician, priest and patriot, wholesale death and destruction to feather his nest.
Women and War.
There follows a chapter on women in life and in war, in which she tells of a friend, an airwoman, who is all for training women to fly. The friend becomes annoyed at the suggestion that women are not fitted to become war pilots, and the author asks her, "but would you willingly bomb towns?" "Why not?" the airwoman replies. And Storm Jameson answers, "because if women are to begin killing as part of their independence they had better never have had it." Then she comments, "There is a peculiar horror in the nation of women butchering their fellows - as if it were self-abuse. As I think it must be for a woman".
Continuing her thought, she says, "I began to wonder why we were allowed to be free, if we are only the spirited and insensitive imitators of men. Women have not naturally the same attitude as men to all that touches breeding, marriage and destroying life. For them to pretend otherwise is a denial of the source of life in themselves. It is self-murder. Humanly speaking, it is a treachery and desertion - since the human destiny is not complete without the working in it of women thinking, feeling, and acting in terms of their womanhood".
"In the end, the world is not yet a rap better because women have been let loose in it. Our effect on its major evils - war, poverty, and - what belongs to them - is nothing, our achievement of our independence nothing".
"If civilization as we know it ends in poison gas, the fault will be in part ours; because we have taken a hand in the game only as following and competing with men and have not tried consciously to redress the imbalance of a social system shaped and directed by men".
Mothers and War.
Writing of mothers, she says, "A mother could forgive herself if in 1914 she 'gave' her son. None of us had then any clear or sensible notion of war's meaning. But now that even non-combatants, if they read, can understand part of the reality, and can see what peace after war is worth, any mother who thinks she serves her country by letting her son go without protest is either wanting or a murderess".
"The war of 1914-18 has twisted the lives of multitude who were too young to fight in it. Nor is the futures of these better than uncertain, in a Europe which, bankrupt, talks in a death-bed voice of economy, ands yet spends colossal sums on war materials. This farce is always on the point of tragedy".
"The mothers whose children were burned or their throats slit by priests believed they served their god with 'so costly a sacrifice'. By a scarcely perceptible shift in values we now condemn then yet approve the spirit in 'I have given my son' to 'England', or it may be to 'France' or to 'Germany'. I do not know why we sicken at one, and applaud the other - what is given is in both cases a human sacrifice. To my unhurried consideration the values are barely different. We have changed our mind's (and final ends) but not our hearts. That only would be a change in values if we sickened at the mere notion of war".
She then ends the book with this statement, "If this country, I say, is got into another war I shall take every means in my power to keep my son out of it. I shall tell him that it is nastier and more shameful to volunteer for gas-bombing than to run from it or to volunteer in the other desperate army of Protestants. I shall tell him also that war is not worth the cost, nor victory worth the cost".
In the wholesale treacheries, horrors and hypocrisies it depicts, this book shows clearly that the momentum of the descent
of Man into matter is by no means exhausted. But in the fearless quality of justice of the woman who wrote it, it also shows the beginnings of vision, of the ascent towards sanity of spirit.
Theosophy and War.
Let us be sensible about all this. Wars, we will have, so long as karma predominates at any given time in a people, a nation, a race; so long as we remain self seeking materialists with no slightest perception of the universal implications of the unity of spirit. Those who live by the sword will die by the sword. In other words, those very peoples who have lived by conquest, by wars and pillage, will be destroyed by the same virus they engendered and used against others. Those who have anger in their hearts, who hate their fellows, who are immersed in the lusts of the passional nature, who think that they can live and flourish at the expense of other people, cause wars. Certainly, the munition barons, the profiteers, the self seeking politicians, the glib priests who turn their backs on any god worthy of the name and serve the god of enmities in man, the, god of a tribe or class; the passionate vengeful women, the martian materialistic men, will inflate and trade upon patriotism and war, will use these to fatten their pocket books, protect their positions, enhance their power, whet their appetites, to give themselves a sense of passionate tension. This is only natural. It has been going on for ages. These may incite to war but they are not the basic cause of war. They cause lies deeper. There is that in every one of us, which if uncontrolled by reason, inspired by good will, leads to war.
Indeed, not until such time as the whole brutal, obscene business of war and its causes turns in on us and burns out hatred and passion and lust for revenge, and the soul awakens in the very midst of the ashes of these and knows itself as an indissoluble part of all mankind and acts accordingly, will wars cease.
Today in Europe they are still taking youth at an impressionable age and filling it with ideas of national glory, of the sanctity of the state, or with fears of and hence revenge toward their neighbours. Europe has always been and still is steeped in all this. There seems no quick cure for such madness. The entire youth of Germany is like a multitude of lambs being prepared for the slaughter. All the young men of Europe are bearing arms, factories are busy making poison gases, bacteria, incendiary bombs, tanks and armed air craft -and what do you think the harvest will be?
Now that is a perfectly simple question and easy, only too easy to answer. But we have not yet gone deep enough into the problem to find the complete answer. Nor can we go deeply enough into it, unless we see and accept that reincarnation for the individual, for the tribe, for the class, the nation and race, is a fact in nature; until we see that individuals, classes, tribes, nations and races reincarnate time and time again, and pass into and through the crucible of cruelties they themselves have made, and emerge therefrom into the light of a better day, strictly by their own efforts, engendered from the deepest nausea of soul in the depths of dire experience, and inspired by that glimpse of regeneration that is the glory behind tragedy. For experience alone finally counts, is finally productive of sanity and wisdom. All the saints on earth could preach their heads off and it would not effect much. When they do preach in the world they always cry in a wilderness anyway. It is quite obvious to any occultist that the Masters know this better than other men.
It follows then that if European civilization is destroyed in the next great war, that this will be by no means the end of Europe. Her peoples will reincarnate again centuries hence, and move into the crucible of their unliquidated cruelties
and reap what they have sown, modified by whatever spiritual treasure they have stored up and converted into character.
Only so do you or I, or any individual, any people, learn to sow more sanely, in terms of the universal law of harmony.
The One Life on Earth Idea.
And for Storm Jameson, and many another clear soul with justice for all men in their hearts, to view the life of the soul in terms of one life on earth only, must produce the last extremity of futility. For a sense of justice such as she possesses would inevitably make any God, who threw new souls on to this globe, into this life, and then sorted them for heaven or hell at death, according to their sins and professions when they never had a chance, look like a fiend. And such a sense of justice would turn any soul perpetually sick at the poverty, injustice and cruelty on all sides and at all times, without any apparent reason in the welter of incredible incongruities. And such a sense of justice would inevitably make any God who created this and found it good, look worse than a fiend and deserving of no more than endless curses from the hosts of his children. And such a sense of justice would make a God who could bless poison gas, boiling oil and incendiary bombs or, in other words, war amongst men, look still worse, the reverend clergy notwithstanding.
"Priestcraft, everywhere first subdued man in his inner spiritual and religious nature, and when man's soul was no longer his own, every other form of exploitation and enslavement was made possible". The mistake made and ushered in by the priest of whatever church, and traded upon to the sorrow of man, is the idea that this is a religious universe. This is not a religious universe any more than it is a scientific universe. It is a universe of law. And the inexorable workings of that One Law cannot be seen from the one-life-on-earth point of view. For inherent in the Law is the continuity of all life, and its evolutionary method, without exception, is reincarnation. And inherent in the Law is the interdependence of all life and its determinant is the ceaseless operation of cause and effect in all realms of being. But because, since the third century, Christian churches have increasingly perverted and sentimentalized and made romantic and carnal and personal the true and exacting doctrine, they have left themselves open to the passions of days and places and peoples, until the doctrines of their founder have been either degraded to mundane expediency or disintegrated into complete ineffectiveness - or haves been set aside as impractical.
No, no, the hope of the world lies in just this - that beyond all sentimental religious ideas; beyond all notions of a God outside his universe who can be propitiated by whatever payments or rites or sacraments; beyond the idea that someone else, whether man or son of God, can save us from our unsolved mistakes; and beyond all the horrors perpetrated by man on earth in the name of whatever God, or in the name of whatever temporary scientific idea - beyond all these, man has an innate sense of justice, of absolute eternal Law, and of the continuity of all life. And when all the rest is gone, sloughed off by vital experiences of its infringement, the One Law is seen as the ultimate of precision, of beauty and beneficence, because in it alone inheres the living spiritual identity of all mankind, true brotherhood and the immortality of they soul.
The Suicide of Europe.
Since writing the above, we have come upon a summary of sheer madness that seems almost incredible in its callousness. A book has just been published bearing the title "What would be the character of a New Way?" According to the critic of the New Yorker, the book does not contain pacifist propaganda but an objective, coldly scientific survey by eighteen experts, many of them noted military men, from the United State's, Great Britain, Sweden, France, Japan, Denmark, Germany, Greece and Switzerland. The survey is the result of an official inquiry organized
by the Interparliamentary Union at Geneva.
These experts apparently assume the inevitability of the next war. Economic factors will not prevent it because it can be paid for. Pacts will be disregarded. There will probably be no declaration of hostilities. Neutral opinion will be compelled to vanish. Like the last, it will be a world conflict. Lengthy and careful preparations for it are now going on. "All States have already decided on a general mobilization of industry". The man in the street will have been made to desire war. The radio is invincible.
In general the next war will begin where the world war ended. "There will be no moderation except that dictated by self-interest". There will be no front and no war zone; the front and the war zone will be everywhere. "Everyone and everything will be involved in the war". The entire country will be mobilized for the purpose of "total warfare". This includes men, women, the aged, and children, though there is a chance that the discomfort of the two latter classes will be abruptly cut short, for "old people and children may become a burden if there is a scarcity of supplies".
Science and Violence.
The characteristic feature of a future war will be "the unrestricted use of every available weapon of violence". These weapons will be devoted largely to terrorizing the civilian populations and annihilating their will to fight. No distinction will be made between combatant and noncombatant.
The crucial struggle will be for mastery of the air, because aircraft is largely valuable for use against civilian populations. The destructive power of surprise air attacks is now one hundred times greater than it was during the last war. Aerial combat will be directed against the entire country. There will be no difficulty about the supply of aircraft. Heavy armaments can be produced but slowly, whereas aircraft (and poison gas) can be quickly multiplied.
Chemicals and incendiary explosives, released from aircraft, will be used on a far greater scale than in the world war. Attacking aeroplanes will probably be merely fleets of unmanned aerial torpedoes, controlled electrically by a few planes flying at high altitudes. Each hit by an antiaircraft gun will simply bring these projectiles down upon the city. This is the desired objective. "There is no reliable protection against direct hits of explosive bombs".
Chemistry will come into its own. Authorities already state that in the field of chemical warfare "the possibilities are unlimited". "The chemical industry is now in a position to destroy unlimited areas completely in a very short time". Against these gases, no really effective protection for city inhabitants can be devised. "One of our own boys, Professor Lewis, of Northwestern University," the reviewer goes on to say, "is the inventor of Lewisite, three drops of which, if they come in contact with any part of your skin, will kill you. Or you may prefer Green Cross Gas, which encourages your lungs to fill with blood so that you die by a kind of interior drowning. On the other hand, the latest variety of mustard gas will allow you to strangle to death over a period of weeks or even months".
Although you are more likely to die by gas or fire, it is possible that you will be destroyed by disease germs dropped from airplanes and distributed in glass globes which break upon reaching the ground.
The probable effect on the mentality and morale of belligerent civilian populations has been carefully charted. We may expect a complete moral collapse and general wholesale reduction to the level of high-grade savages. The temptation to acts of individual heroism or moral grandeur is to be discouraged, as such acts will be useless. It is highly advisable to cultivate in advance a certain stoicism. Mothers hiding in cellars are not to be disturbed by the
certainty that their children on the way home from school are writhing in agony on gas saturated pavement.
It is to be noted also the tendency today toward national secrecy in the development of new armaments. The next war may produce some lethal weapon of which these eighteen experts are quite ignorant and which may be effective in a generously inclusive way.
The authors are unmoved by armament reductions or Red Cross ameliorations of any variety. They are unanimous in feeling that nothing but the abolition of war will abolish war, though they go no further in outlining means. Military men, who have their own wives and kiddies to look after, of course, are in favour of one last shindy, after which, it is promised, mankind will mend its ways. "A war to end war, as it were; quite a novel idea."
The End of an Age.
All this is not the vicious cold vision of a mad house but sober fact. It is the awful picture of the possible end of an age, and the end of that continent and those peoples who have exploited and dominated it. Europe, alas, seems to have stored up more evil than she can liquidate in her present incarnation.
All this is also, in a sense, the inevitable outcome of the scientific attitude abstracted from all human values in sheer calculation and frigid one-pointed-ness. It is the intellect divorced from everything that can give it value, and the "intellect alone will send us all to hell sure", as Judge said. It is also the result of that abstraction the nation or state, under whose strictly inhuman cloak, all manner of treachery and cruelty may be not only committed and condoned, but encouraged; as witness the devilish moral cowardice of Germany today, a people who under the cloak of a fanatical belief in the superiority of the Aryan-Germanic racial strain - a myth if there ever was one -make a scape goat of another and utterly helpless people, the Jews in their midst, and bully and butcher and crucify them. It is the result of a number of gigantic abstractions that have robbed people of the power to think in terms of the human heart.
Whatever it is within us that has led us to submit our real godlike powers to the dictates of the callousness of these abstractions; whether it has been ignorance or weakness, or an eclipse of the love and life of the living heart, it seems there is but one way out. We have each one of us to put our house in order; to refuse any longer to permit any organization, whether of church or state or industry to do our thinking for us, or to permit them to substitute fetiches for thought; to rid ourselves of the false gods that would destroy our humanity, that eat away the power of understanding in our hearts. These are all of them creeds or dogmas, whether of church or state or commerce, under the guise of which men have destroyed each other for ages.
Until the human heart in every man begins to decide issues for itself and each man finds the courage to act strictly in terms of his own inner responsibility, uninfluenced in thought by these mighty and disastrous abstractions, we will continue to breed wars and all manner of callousness and cruelty. Until we each one learn that the only scapegoat there is, is within ourselves, individuals, nations and races will continue to go about the business of destroying others, in the mistaken notion that they can thus save themselves. And until each one of us learns that the only saviour there is, is within each one of us, we will continue to hand over what is our own responsibility to some outside myth, and thus at once make ourselves into pliable weaklings and help to build and strengthen those very things that sap and destroy our real manhood and womanhood.