Divine Wisdom Brotherhood Occult Science
The Theosophical Society is not responsible for any statement in this Magazine. unless made in an official document
VOL. XX, No. 12 HAMILTON, FEBRUARY 15th, 1940 Price 10 Cents.
A NOBLE AND SUBLIME FIELD
Dr. G. de Purucker, Leader of the Point Loma Theosophical Society, has written a letter to the members of the Welsh Section of his Society. The insignificant matters that divide the Societies need not blind us to the identity of teaching and unanimity of spirit that characterizes this message of which we append a few paragraphs: -
"All that you say about various matters concerning the T.S. has a great deal of truth in it, and perhaps it is all true; but we must remember that conditions in any organization, and the T.S. amongst them can never be perfect as long as we have imperfect human beings carrying on our blessed Work, or any Work.
"In a noble and sublime field of labor for mankind, such as ours is, it is an infallible certainty that there will be difficulties, many and various, and problems many and various; and throughout the ages, as you will find even in Christianity if you read the old writings, there is always a complaint that the fields of labor are so big, and the laborers are so few! It is the same in the T.S. as elsewhere; but it is just these few laborers, with their spirit of devotion and dogged will-power, and determination to succeed, that carry the movement through the ages, and ultimately bring success . . . .
"As regards the world-situation now, about which you ask so pertinently, I can only say that I write under the greatest reserves, because my words, if not thoroughly understood, could be greatly misconstrued; but I will briefly say this, that the whole world is passing through a new stage, a new phase of civilization; in other words an old age is dying, and a new age is coming in; and what we see all around us, are but the birth-pangs of a new era; and be assured that the great spiritual forces which control the world are doing what they can to bring to birth in every way possible the finest that human nature is capable of giving birth to for the new age . . . .
"Don't worry about world-affairs and other matters. I know they are in the minds of all, and in the hearts of every normal man and woman today, great sorrow and great anxiety, and we have it here also. But we are passing through a changing phase of life, and Karma must be worked out before a new stability and a new order based on right and justice, can again come to unhappy mankind. Keep high courage. Never falter in your devotion. Remember the Masters are guiding and helping as far as man will allow them to do so, and at any rate always are helping individuals who are worthy of the help."
ACCORDING TO THEOSOPHY
By Katharine Hillard, F.T.S.
(Concluded from Page 329)
"The Third Race shows three distinct divisions or aspects, physiologically and psychically: the earliest, sinless; the middle portions, awakening to intelligence; and the third and last, decidedly animal, where the mind succumbs to the temptations of desire." (II, 254. note.)
"No sooner had man been given understanding, and a consciousness of his divine powers, than each felt himself a god in his real nature, though an animal in his physical self. The struggle between the two began from the very day man tasted of the fruit of the Tree of Wisdom. (II, 272.) That is, when man had been given mind, and Self-consciousness had arisen from its union with matter, "he became as a god, knowing good and evil." We cannot imagine good and evil existing without desire; only with manifestation, which springs from (abstract) desire, can the duality of nature, (its "pairs of opposites," to use the Hindu phrase) begin. Good and evil, light and darkness, heat and cold, male and female, active and passive, are the two scales of the ever-vibrating balance of creation. Therefore evil must be relative, and only through strife can man work out his salvation, only through constant conflict win his way back to perfect peace, "a struggle for life between the spiritual and the psychic, the psychic and the physical." Those who conquered the lower principles by obtaining mastery over the body, joined the "Sons of Light." Those who fell victims to their lower natures, became the "Slaves of Matter." From "Sons of Light and Wisdom" they ended by becoming the "Sons of Darkness." They had fallen in the battle of mortal life with Life immortal, and all those so fallen became the seed of the future generations of Atlantean sorcerers.
For it was the Atlantean, or Fourth Race, "the first progeny of semi-divine man after his separation into sexes - hence the first humanly-born mortals - who become the first "Sacrificers" to the god of matter. That worship degenerated very soon into self-worship; thence led to phallicism, or that which reigns supreme to this day in the symbolism of every exoteric religion of ritual, dogma, and form." (II, 273.) And with the Fourth Race developed language: in its first stage monosyllabic; in its second, agglutinative; in its third, inflectional, the root of the Sanskrit.
The early branches of the Fourth Race are described as being of gigantic stature, and endowed with extraordinary faculties, and are the origin of the traditions of Titans, and of Cyclopes. "We can easily believe," says Mme. Blavatsky, "that the subsequent legends and allegories found in the Hindu Puranas and the Greek Hesiod and Homer, were based on the hazy reminiscences of real Titans - men of tremendous physical power - and of actual Cyclopes, three-eyed mortals." (II, 293.) The third eye was not, however, in the middle of the forehead, as in the Greek legendary Cyclops, (by an exoteric license) but in the back of the head.
"They could see behind and before," says the old Commentary, "but when after the separation of the sexes men had fallen into matter, their spiritual vision became dim, and the third eye began to lose its power." (II, 294.) When the Fourth Race arrived at its middle age, the inner vision had to be awakened, and acquired by artificial stimuli, the process of which was known to the old sages. (That is, the inner sight could henceforth be gained only through training and initiation.) The
third eye, likewise, getting gradually petrified, soon disappeared. The double-faced became the one-faced, and the eye was drawn deep into the head, and is now buried under the hair." But it has left a witness to its existence in the shape of the pineal gland, formerly regarded by Descartes as the seat of the soul. That the pineal gland is an atrophied eye is admitted by many scientists, as many animals, and more especially the lizards, have a distinct third eye, now atrophied, but necessarily active in its origin. Dr. Carter Blake, F.T.S., (of the London Anthropological Society) says: Paleontology has ascertained that in the animals of the Cenozoic Age, especially the Saurians, the third eye was much developed, and was a real organ of vision." And in an article in Scribner, 1890, by J. Bland Sutton on Evolution and Disease, the author says: "Nothing can be more striking than what is known as the pineal eye in certain lizards," and De Graaft discovered that in the slow-worm the pineal gland is actually modified into an invertebrate eye. [Zool, Anz., p. 29. 1886.] Sir Richard Owen points out its presence in many fossil animals, [ Aspects of the Body in Vertebrates, etc. 1883. ] and Prof. Ray Lankaster suggests "that the original vertebrate must have been a transparent animal, with an eye or pair of eyes inside its brain, like those of the Ascidian tadpole." [ The Advancement of Science, 1879. Partially retracted in Nov. 1889. ] This eye was an active organ in man (says the occult teaching) at that stage of evolution when the spiritual element reigned supreme. And with the consolidation of his frame and the development of his physical senses, the third eye, as well as the spiritual and psychic senses, ended by becoming atrophied. While this eye was (and still is) in man the organ of the inward sight, in the animal it was that of objective vision, to be replaced, in the course of physical evolution from the simple to the complex, by two eyes. In man it did not become entirely atrophied till the close of the Fourth Race, when his divine powers had been made the servants of his newly awakened physical and psychic passions instead of the reverse. The sin lay, not in using these powers, but in misusing them.
The sinking and transformation of Lemuria, as it has been agreed to call the Third Continent, the home of the Third Race, began nearly at the Arctic Circle, and the Third Race ended its career in the "Lanka" of the Atlanteans, of which Ceylon was the northern highland. (II, 332.) The new Race, the inhabitants of Atlantis, the Fourth Continent, were developed from a nucleus of Northern Lemurian men about 700,000 years before the beginning of what is now called the Tertiary Age, (the Eocene). Of course race-changes, like all others in nature, are slow and gradual, one race overlaps another, and even now, representatives of the Fourth, and even of the Third Races, are still living. It is simply a question of predominance.
"It is known to all occultists," we are told in Man, or Fragments of Forgotten History, p. 75, "that the first civilization of our Round began with the Third Race, of which lingering remnants are now to be found among the flat-headed Australians. These degraded specimens of humanity, strange though it might seem, are descended from ancestors whose civilization antedated by aeons that of Phoenicia and Babylon." Little trace of their work has come down to us except in the oldest remains of Cyclopean architecture such as are found in Peru and Central America, or in the curious statues of Easter Island, part of the submerged continent again upheaved to the light of day.
With the Atlanteans, physical beauty and strength reached their climax, in accordance with evolutionary law,
toward their middle period. (II, 433. ) But they must not be regarded as one race only, in our ordinary sense, or even as a nation. They represented several humanities, and an almost countless number of races and nations, and at their best, Greek, Roman, and even Egyptian civilizations were as nothing compared to theirs. (II, 429.) Their knowledge of the hidden powers of nature was far greater than our own; they built flying machines and navigated them, they had weapons of a destructive power beyond our conception, and their houses were floored with gold. Art, literature, and science had their origin during this race period, we are told in Man, p. 77, but little of their literature is now preserved, and their art and science have scarcely left any vestige except in China, though one of the principal astronomical works in Sanskrit is the production of an Atlantean astronomer. When they came into contact with the Aryans, they were on the decline, for their highest pitch of civilization was reached while the Aryan race was still in its cradle, and the records of their grandeur, while inaccessible to the world at large, "are treasured with zealous care in the secret libraries of temples and lamasaries, and the crypts and caverns of initiated mystics." (Man, 78.)
It was the abuse of their knowledge of the subtler forces of nature which led to the downfall of the Atlantean Race. (II, 84.) The great cataclysms which close the cyclic degeneration of races, are brought about by their over-weening pride and wickedness which renders a general conflict between them and the powers of goodness inevitable. In all religions the memory of such conflicts is preserved under different names and symbols. This is the combat of Michael and his Angels against the Dragon; of the Sons of Light against the Sons of Darkness; of the Devas against the Asuras.
"The famous Atlantis exists no longer, but we can hardly doubt that it did once," says Proclus, for besides the histories of Marcellus and others, he quotes the testimony of the inhabitants of Poseidonis, (its last fragment) "who preserved the memory of the prodigious magnitude of the Atlantic island as described by their ancestors." (II, 408.) This island of Poseidonis was Plato's Atlantis, and was destroyed about 11,000 years ago. (II, 8.) The submersion of the main continent was several million years earlier, during the Miocene period. It is this great submersion which is the most interesting, as it gave rise to all the legends of the Deluge, and of Vaivasvata, Xisuthrus, Noah, Deukalion, and the few holy ones saved from destruction. "It was brought on by successive disturbances in the axial rotation, that beginning during the earliest Tertiary period, and continuing for long ages, carried away successively the last vestiges of Atlantis, with the exception perhaps of Ceylon, and a small portion of what is now Africa. It changed the face of the globe, and little trace of the flourishing civilizations, arts, and sciences it swept away has remained, save in the secret records of the East." (II, 314.)
"The first great waters came," says the old manuscript. "They swallowed the seven great islands. All holy saved, the unholy destroyed. With them most of the huge animals, produced from the sweat of the earth.
"Few men remained: some yellow, some brown and black, and some red remained. The Moon-colored (the earliest type) was gone forever.
"The Fifth (Race) produced from the Holy stock remained; it was ruled over by the first divine Kings . . . .who redescended, who made peace with the Fifth, who taught and instructed it."
Now it is a curious fact that all ancient nations, whether Akkadian, Chinese, Hindu, Egyptian, Hebrew,
Greek, or Peruvian preserve some tradition of such early divine teachers. From Manu and Thot-Hermes down, all tell us of the gods who descended from their celestial abodes and reigned on earth, teaching mankind astronomy, architecture, and other arts and sciences. These Beings always appear first as "gods" and creators; then they merge in nascent man, and begin to be known as divine kings and rulers. They are often spoken of as the "Serpents" or "Dragons," for from time immemorial the Serpent or Dragon has been the emblem of Wisdom, for the proofs of which assertion I must refer you to the Secret Doctrine where this symbol is most fully and carefully explained. "When mortals shall have become sufficiently spiritualized," says Mme. Blavatsky, "men will know then, that there never yet was a great World-Reformer, whose name has passed into our generation, who was not (a) a direct emanation of the Logos, (under whatever name known to us), and (b) who had not appeared before, during the past Cycles . . . . They will then understand why it is impossible for them to assign any reliable date to Zoroaster, who is found multiplied by twelve and fourteen, why Krishna and Buddha speak of themselves as reincarnations; . . . . why Osiris reappears in Thoth-Hermes, and why Jesus of Nazareth is recognized, cabalistically, in Joshua the son of Nun." (II, 358.) Each of these, as well as many others, we are told, had first appeared on earth as one of the seven powers of the Logos, individualized as a God or angelic messenger; then, more material in form, they had reappeared in turn as great sages and instructors of the Fifth Race, and finally sacrificed themselves, to be reborn under differing circumstances for the good of mankind at various critical periods. In the early Egyptian history, for instance, we read that Osiris-Isis, the dual god, the father-mother, "built cities in Egypt, and stopped the over-flowing of the Nile; invented agriculture, the use of the vine, music, astronomy, and geometry." (II, 366.) In the Book of the Dead, Isis says: "I am the Queen of these regions; I was the first to reveal to mortals the mysteries of wheat and corn." (II, 347.) And the Commentary states: "Fruits and grains unknown to Earth to that day, were brought by the `Lords of Wisdom,' for the benefit of those they ruled, from other spheres." Now it is said to be a fact that wheat has never been found in the wild state, and it is the only cereal which has defied the efforts of botanists to trace it to its origin. And it was a sacred grain with the Egyptians, being buried with their mummies to come to life centuries afterwards.
Nearly five hundred years before the present era, Herodotus was shown by the priests of Egypt the statues of their Kings and Pontiffs, all of miraculous birth, who had reigned before Menes, their first human King. "These statues," he says, "were enormous colossi in wood, 345 in number, each of which had his name, his history, and his annals." And the priests assured Herodotus that no historian could ever understand or write an account of these superhuman Kings unless he had studied and learned the history of the three dynasties that preceded the human - namely, the DYNASTIES OF THE GODS, that of the demi-gods, and that of the heroes, or giants. (II, 369.) These "three dynasties" are the three Races that preceded the Atlanteans, or the Fourth Race, the climax of the material.
"The duration of the periods that separate, in space and time, the Fourth from the Fifth Race - in the historical, or even the legendary beginnings of the latter, is too tremendous for us to offer any more detailed account of them," says the Secret Doctrine. (II, 437.)
The fifth continent was America, but
as the sequence of the continents is made to follow the order of the evolution of the races, from the First to the Fifth, our Aryan Root-race, Europe must be called the fifth great continent. "There was a time when the delta of Egypt and Northern Africa belonged to Europe, before the formation of the Straits of Gibraltar and a further upheaval of the continent, changed entirely the face of the map of Europe. The last serious change occurred some 12,000 years ago, and was followed by the submersion of Plato's little Atlantic island that he called Atlantis after its parent continent." (II, 8. )
Since the beginning of the Atlantean Race many million years have passed, yet we find the last of the Atlanteans mixed up with the earliest Aryans. "This shows," says the Secret Doctrine, "the enormous, overlapping of one race over the race which succeeds it, though in characters and external type the elder loses its characteristics and assumes the new features of the younger race," (II, 444.) This may be seen in the formation of all mixed races, and Occult philosophy teaches that even now the next Race is in process of formation, and it is in America that that process has already silently commenced. For owing to the strong admixture in the United States of many nationalities, with their constant inter-marriages, their peoples have become almost a race sui generis, not only mentally, but physically. "They are, in short, the germs of the Sixth sub-race, and in some few hundred years more will become most decidedly the pioneers of that race which must succeed to the present European or fifth sub-race, in all its new characteristics." For the Occult teaching divides each race of the seven Root-races into seven sub-races, and these again into seven branches or family-races. The Fifth will overlap the Sixth Race for many hundreds of millenniums, changing with it (but more slowly, still changing), in stature, general physique, and mentality, just as the Fourth overlapped our Aryan Race, and the Third had overlapped the Atlanteans." And as in any series of seven the fourth must be the central or balance-point, so with the Fourth Race the spiritual element had become most deeply embedded in matter, and with the Fifth the reascent toward the spiritual begins. Only by the union with matter can Universal Consciousness become individual Mind, only by the purification of matter can it work out its own salvation, and regain the glorious liberty of the Sons of God. With each Race, we are told, a new sense, and a new element comes to perfection. We of the Fifth Race have five senses, and already the fifth element, ether, is beginning to be recognized even by the scientists. In her speech at the London Convention of 1892, Mrs. Besant pointed out how "side by side with the position of humanity at this moment is the development of this fifth element of ether on the material plane . . . . It matters not whether you turn to the physicist, the chemist, the electrician;" she said, "you will see that each one of these classes of scientific men has been investigating ether, studying ether;" and Professor Crookes has said that, "in its vibrations, vibrations hardly understood yet, lie possibilities of the hidden powers of communication of human thought, possibilities of a new, organ in the human brain answering to these vibrations as the eye answers to the vibrations which we know as light." And so the way is being prepared for the development of that sixth sense which will be the distinguishing characteristic of the coming race.
"Thus it is the mankind of the New world," says the teacher, "whose mission and destiny it is to sow the seed: for a forth-coming, grander, and more glorious Race than any we know of at
present." (II, 446.) But as the coral island never could have risen above the waves had not each microscopic insect contributed its tiny quota to the work of untold millions, so does the future of humanity depend upon our individual exertions to help to a swifter evolution the progress of mankind. The progress of the race is the progress of each individual, and we too, like the poet, need to learn the lesson of the Chambered Nautilus:
"Build thee more stately mansions, O my soul,
As the swift seasons roll!
Leave thy low-vaulted past!
Let each new temple, nobler than the last,
Shut thee from heaven with a dome more vast,
Till thou at length art free,
Leaving thine out-grown shell by life's unresting sea!"
- Katharine Hillard, F.T.S.
March 7th, 1893.
"YOUR UNKNOWN DOCTOR"
This book has come as a real Canadian contribution to a world running headlong into disease for want of highway signs indicating the road to health. It is by Rolf Alexander, M.D., and he represents a new order of medical wisdom that goes back to the original methods of Hippocrates and other early physicians who understood the simple laws of nature in matters of health and strength before medical craft got cluttered up with the thousand drugs now listed in the pharmacopeia of which less than a score are specifics. He starts off with the occult statement that the Unknown Doctor can only be understood as we understand the universe, as "one without the other would be unintelligible."
The facts set forth are the fruits of over twenty years of studying the causes and effects of diseases both in the far East and the Western world, and the principles have been used by Dr. Alexander in general medical practice. He asserts that the profession of medicine has had a glorious history yet that "perhaps the most thrilling stories of healing ever told are those performed by Jesus along the shores of Galilee." If these stories stood alone some might be inclined to doubt them, he notes, but "down through the ages they have been going on in every land." He mentions "the occasional astounding cures performed by the Priests at the Grotto of Lourdes in France and at Ste. Anne de Beaupre in Canada," while "those who have lived in the East can attest to the hundreds of cures performed by Moslem holy men and by Hindu Yogis." Nor does he omit the results of Christian Science and the healers of other faiths. In all these "there is a common principle which, when properly invoked, will effect a cure in every case, or at least in every case where disease has not utterly destroyed the possibility of function."
He bases his methods on the reign of Law. The universe would be unworkable but for this reign of Law, impersonal and Absolute. Such Law is true of the body of Man as well as of the body of the Cosmos. No interpreters or judges are necessary. The Law executes its own decrees. If we break the laws of health we become diseased. If we keep them we remain in or regain health. The Easterners observe these laws which the West ignores or has forgotten. "The West does not consider the methods of the Yogis as practicable for a general check up by other scientists," so they pass them up. Simple explanations are given of the old theories of Vibration, of the electron and the atom, of evolution, old in the East, new in the West, and of the ether of space, known as the Akasa in the East. Short chapters on Energy, Intelligence, Spirit, the Descent of Man, will give the average reader a simpler and more definite conception of the science of these ideas than he may get through much study elsewhere.
Then he tells how "the portion of the Universal Mind was charged like a master contractor, with the task of building a suitable habitation for the soul, which, like a royal master, reclined in slumber until the edifice should be completed." The picture he gives of this will help the reader to understand his theory of health.
"For countless centuries the Contractor labored, a tireless and marvelously resourceful servant, planning, adapting, altering and revising the physical body to meet the changing conditions of its environment - devising dozens of little chemical laboratories for the manufacture of substances needed within the body. He planned pigments to act as filters against harmful rays entering the body; elaborated the organs of sight and hearing to catch the vibrations known as sound and light. He trained armies of antibodies to repel the invasions of bacteria; mending broken bones and healing wounds and so on. Then, periodically, having reached the limit of his resources, He withdrew from the house He had built, with its master, (the soul,) and after a period of rest, during which His previous experiences were condensed into instincts, He returned, refreshed and eager, with its slumbering master, to build a new and better structure. We shall call this individualized drop of Universal Mind from now on the Instinctive Mind, for within it resides, in the form of instincts, all the lessons of the ages." He adds that "the Instinctive Mind specialized a part of itself into an intellect with the faculty of being able to study cause and effect."
This view places the intellectual mind in its proper place as coming up from below, material in its basis. "The intellectual mind was granted a certain domination over the instinctive mind. It communicated ideas of danger to it, which at once caused various secretions to be poured into the blood stream to furnish the needed extra amount of chemical energy with which to fight or flee . . . . It must not be imagined, though, that these two phases of mind are sharply divided. They blend into each other as the colors of a rainbow do, and there is a neutral zone between them which partakes of the quality of each, and yet has the functional ability of neither. This is where most of our dreams come from, and it is called by Western Psychologists the `Subconscious Mind'."
Dr. Alexander argues that the very intellect man created told him that this "ordered scheme of things was the work of a great Super-Intelligence, and that this great Super-Intelligence was his real father and mother . . . . From the anguish of his heart he called to his father to reveal himself and to take him by the hand." This note will recall the passage in the Christmas speech of King George who was so impressed with what has been a universal image among the poets and prophets all down the ages.
"The response to this demand," says our author, "was a stirring of the soul from its agelong slumber . . . . I believe almost everyone has had those occasional inspiring flashes and knows their exhilarating stimulus . . . . From those flashes of spiritual consciousness evolved the spiritual mind. In humanity as a whole this highest phase of consciousness is still in an embryonic stage . . . . As man's spiritual mind unfolds, his sense of the reality and omnipresence of the Absolute becomes stronger and stronger, and a feeling of brotherhood with all living beings becomes very real. Instead of being a lonely stranger wandering in a stark, hostile world, he becomes a welcome guest in the halls of the Absolute."
Then we have a statement which may help many who have not been able to follow the occult teachings in detail, to obtain a grasp of the main point of it
all. "You, perhaps, have become struck with the fact that the constitution of man, as outlined in this little book, has a striking resemblance to the Constitution of the Universe? The soul of man has a similar relation to the Instinctive Mind as the Absolute has to the Universal Mind. The Soul of man is the God of his body."
Next Dr. Alexander draws a striking parallel between the body of man and a hive of bees. The cells and corpuscles are the bee-builders of the body, governed by a Queen Bee. "Try to form a picture of this immense swarm of super bees, working busily at their appointed tasks, each one hidden in his own cell, yet, the whole collective effort being directed by the wise Queen and coordinated into the physical body."
This does not give an adequate impression of the ingenious analogy which must appeal to the intelligent reader. Having grasped the idea of the unity of the body it is easy to understand the exclamation of the eminent Harvard doctor who exclaimed at the American Psychiatric Association meeting last June: "It looks as if the body is an electric machine!"
With this keynote Dr. Alexander deals with "Germs" and concludes that it is only when a condition extremely favorable to their breeding exists in some cell group of the body, due to injury or other cause, that they can increase with sufficient rapidity to destroy the whole organization of the body. "With a few exceptions," he says, "germs should be looked upon as an effect rather than a cause."
The real "You" can never be sick, nor be hungry, nor feel pain, for It is a spiritual entity which inhabits your body as your body inhabits a house. If a house leaks and the plumbing and sewage are out of order and no repairs are made, you as a tenant might move out. If the body is in a bad state of repair, the Soul might do the same should the Instinctive Mind not repair it. "Yet the Instinctive Mind can and will repair it in almost every instance when the command comes from the Royal Master - the real You, - the Soul." He quotes Dr. Alexis Carroll and Dr. Alexander Cannon as endorsing this.
Exercises are given for the creation in the Instinctive Mind of a desire for health, and if this be done in Silence, he asserts, "that desire will continue to motivate it to use all its marvelous resources to fulfil that desire until you talk about it, when it will automatically be released from further effort."
Chapters on Emotion and Suggestion follow with much useful advice, and then a valuable chapter tells of The Removal of Limitation. This chapter should be widely available. His experience in New Zealand is brought out in the chapter on psychic influence, the Maories using telepathy quite commonly among themselves. Children suffer much from these telepathic influences from their parents and elders. The penultimate chapter is a fine summary of what has preceded, and "Knowledge Harnessed" is probably as harmless an introduction to the simpler avenues of occult teaching as we have.
"Think over what has been said of the Instinctive Mind. Many of its instincts are now handicaps, instead of assets: fear, hate and selfishness are no longer of any use to us and should be replaced by courage, fellowship and unselfishness."
The book can be recommended as a fine product of Canadian thought and temper. It is finely printed in a new and beautiful 14-point type, so that for legibility it will appeal to all. We regret to note that the proof-reading is not equal to the printing as errors on pages 20, 39, 77, 88, 149 (2), 152 and 155 (3) indicate. The book is published by the Cranbrook Courier, Cranbrook, B. C.
GLIMPSES OF ADYAR
The following extracts from a series of Letters entitled "Vignettes from Adyar" written by Miss Anita Henkel, should interest those who may possibly contemplate a trip to Headquarters. Miss Henkel has been appointed liaison officer for Canada. She had been attached to the Wheaton headquarters of the American Theosophical Society and has been at Adyar for over a year.
My rooms are on the top floor of Leadbeater Chambers, which is the living quarters for European and American residents and visitors, and contains about twenty such apartments each consisting of two rooms, a bath and a lavatory. It is really one large, long, high-ceilinged room divided by a wide high arch, each end opening with a door and three windows on to the wide veranda which surrounds the entire building.
In my living room is a large dark wood desk with a distinctive air, a roughly made open-shelf book case, a chowkie (the Indian equivalent to a studio couch with a hard board top covered by a thin mattress) and two chairs, one straight and the other reclining, the latter with arm extensions upon which to put your feet - a very ingenious and cool arrangement, though slightly ungraceful. Completing the furnishings of this room are two small tables and a cupboard, evidently intended for food supplies since it is set into four little concrete "pans" filled with water to keep out the ants.
There remain only two more things in my personal nook at Leadbeater Chambers about which to tell you - the magnificent view from my front veranda and my nice little Indian servant boy, Mannar, with the accent on the last syllable. He finds it difficult to understand me and I to understand him, for we both speak peculiar English - his broken and mine American. But we are learning. He brings my breakfast tray at 6.45 each morning, cleans my room, does my small laundry, brings drinking water, changes the flowers, looks at all my possessions, and generally wanders in and out noiselessly in his bare feet and white Indian dress, consisting of a man's collarless shirt worn with the tail outside, and a dhoti, which is a length of white cotton material folded about the waist like a skirt, or in some apparently precarious but seemingly safe manner draped to make trouser leg effects. He also wears a white turban and a mustache.
Now for the view from my rooms. As you can see I am first giving you the setting for my personal life at Adyar, the setting into which any one of you coming to Adyar would probably fit. Each of the many curved arches running the full length of the veranda frames a different picture and the arch directly in front of my apartment is covered with scarlet bougainvillaea, brilliant against the white building. Below is a long rectangular garden with flowers and palm trees, two lotus pools with blossoms and lily pads. Only a few yards further, trees rim the edge of the shallow Adyar river, while others grow on small marshy islands over which white birds circle at dusk each day. Fishermen in boats, or walking waist deep in water, spread their nets with beautifully rhythmic motions. The water is in ribbons of varying hues, rose, green and lavender. From the opposite bank the raja's palace and two suburban residences of city dwellers throw long white reflections in the still waters of the early morning. To the north are distant glimpses of the city of Madras, to the left the Elphinstone Bridge over which the setting sun plays purple and gold shadows, and to the right nearby is the long sandbar across the mouth of the river with a small
opening through which the Adyar river flows into the blue, blue waters of the Bay of Bengal. The view thrills me every time I glance from my door, and I am in constant state of wonderment as to how the river can enter the sea when the waves are continually washing up against it in great breakers!
THEOSOPHY IN ACTION
Resuming our consideration of the Reports of Committees to the Convention last July of the American T.S., we take up the report on "Theosophy in Action." A special Committee had been appointed on this subject, and subcommittees were also appointed on the particular phases of "The Lodge as a Focus of Action;" "Theosophy in Social Service;" "Right Citizenship;" "Animal Welfare;" and "World Peace." Under the first head "The Committee submits that one of the principal purposes of the Lodge is to serve as an inspiration and as a guide for all of the activities of its members. To be intelligent and coherent our individual actions must be initiated from some centre which in spirit encompasses all phases of our lives. The Committee recognizes that the Lodge should not attempt to duplicate the work of other organizations such as are found in nearly all situations where workers are needed. Rather the Theosophical Lodge should be a gathering place where workers in the plan are recharged with spiritual energies so that they may go forth with added impetus and enthusiasm into the Masters' work wherever they feel they can be of most service. It is well that we do not all choose the same field of work, for each is best suited to some particular task and each has some niche in society where he will be most useful."
It was suggested that the members might be notified where workers were needed or where Theosophical thought night be particularly helpful. Or again, where strength and encouragement might tide a movement or individual over a difficult obstacle. "It is to be hoped that each Lodge in every city might come to be looked upon by other groups as a place where they may appeal for efficient workers to carry on a worthy cause." This is to be interpreted as meaning that the Lodge should be calling upon its members to live unselfish lives in serving humanity. The Committee feels that each worker is not just an ordinary unit but has special qualifications in possessing a complete knowledge of the laws of Life and its object and goal. In the degree of his unselfishness and knowledge he unconsciously inspires leadership and shows the way in his own life. If the Lodge is doing its duty the members become trained and schooled for action in service and will find joy in the fulfilment of such duties.
Under the head of Citizenship the Committee thought each member should realize that as a citizen he is a necessary part in his community, province, nation, and the world. Members should "cooperate with all civic-minded groups in the community which are working to apply Brotherhood to home, school, church, economics and politics." It was advised that members keep in close contact with provincial and federal representatives, letting them know how you stand on measures for public welfare. As United States citizens the Committee recognized that the growth of the nation rendered an international viewpoint necessary.
Animal Welfare should be pursued, the Committee recommended, through effort to prohibit vivisection, encouragement of vegetarianism, the use of fabrics to replace the use of fur, and to eliminate all the cruelties ensuing from the slaughter of animals, their abuse in circuses, moving pictures, and in hunting and such so-called sports. It was suggested that members attach them-
selves to one of the animal protection societies. Also to do what they could to promote the adoption of vegetarian diet.
On World Peace, members are advised to determine and emphasize the direction of the world toward peace, chiefly in realizing World Unity as a fact in nature. This requires the faculty of Intuition and for this study and training are necessary. For the study of the problem of neutrality the Bhagavad Gita is recommended. "For the blending of Dictatorship and Democracy," it is somewhat ambiguously observed, "we recommend Dr. Arundale's publication Conscience."
On the final subject, Theosophy in Social Service, we quote in part the preliminary paragraph. "It is generally conceded that Social Service is more or less a soulless affair at present, except among the leaders and occasional exceptions here and there. Much of it requires special training, but the Theosophist can do some of it as volunteer work, bringing his Theosophical background into it, as well as perhaps having before him his concept of the pattern of the ideal American of the future . . . ."
The Committee listed the following departments of social work making some suggestions under each head: Work with the Blind; Work with Unmarried Mothers; Volunteer Service with Settlement Houses, Receptionist in hospital or children's clinics, Traveler's Aid, Boys' clubs, Girls' clubs, Boy and Girl Scouts; Immigrants; Parent-Teachers' Association; Visiting (best done in small towns and villages); Work with Negroes (Lindemann, the progressive educator, gives warning that unless something is done to break down the barriers of hatred, prejudice and misunderstanding between Negroes and Whites in the large cities, the consequences may be very grave); Prison Work; Delinquent Boys and Girls.
It is suggested that Lodges might find it interesting to spend an occasional evening discussing these various phases of social work, discussing them in the light of Theosophy. "Working in any such `Theosophy in Action' programme as outlined above the Theosophist will find himself more alive and enthusiastic than ever, will make many interesting contacts outside the Lodge, from which he will learn more of the conditions existing today and be better able to do his bit towards remedying them."
We hope to conclude this synopsis of these valuable Reports and Recommendations of the Committees of the T.S. in America next month, the Subjects being Publicity, Youth and Culture, and Membership. We are indebted to the `kindness of Mr. S.A. Cook, president of the American T.S. for permission thus freely to partake of the experience of our neighbors in practical work.
Editor, Canadian Theosophist: - I fear I am about to rashly invoke the fate of those who interfere in other people's quarrels; but the subject so greatly intrigues me that I will assume all risks.
There is an impression which is far too common in our Society that any free expression of opinion that is not lauditory is "unbrotherly" and "untheosophical."
It is in an attempt to expose the sickly, mawkish nature of this widely prevalent notion that I make bold to enter the lists in this jousting. As one who has lived in the thick of the Theosophical tempests and hurricanes for more than 30 years, I have had my full share of blows, suspicions, and calumnies; but on looking back, I cannot see that they have done me any real harm; at any rate I would not have missed those experiences for large gifts. But to our tale.
Late last summer, at the end of a perfect day, Mr. Jinarajadasa dropped off at Vancouver to deliver a lecture to the assembled Lodges of this city. Mr. Jinarajadasa is an old and experienced lecturer, and our younger members were forewarned that he was an ex-Vice-President of the Theosophical Society, the Outer Head of its Esoteric School, and one of the Big Shots, whose words in these troublous and distracted times would doubtless shed much-needed light on the rather desperate problems which were upon us. Moreover, they were told that our distinguished visitor was proclaimed by Mrs. Besant in 1925 as one of the Twelve Apostles of the modern Christ; and also (on the same great authority) that he was a high Initiate. Thus was expectation pitched to a very high point.
About the time of the going down of the sun Mr. Jinarajadasa delivered his lecture, and of all the Theosophical lectures I ever heard, it most resembled a lecture delivered in Vancouver by Mr. Jinarajadasa over three years ago.
Well, as a result of this rather distressing performance some of the more outspoken members of the Orpheus Lodge sent a short comment to the Canadian Theosophist, in the course of which they offered a suggestion in explanation of Mr. Jinarajadasa's lamentable falling-off from the days of his early promise.
Now comes my old friend Mr. Fritz Kunz, and storms boisterously upon the scene with a warm, confused, and, I think, very ill-considered defense of Mr. Jinarajadasa.
We all admire a valiant defense of anyone unjustly attacked, and, if the victim should also be a personal friend, he has a double claim upon our valor and our eloquence. But what is the play if our friend's case happens to be utterly indefensible? There are circumstances, I think, when perhaps the least said the better .
I, too, listened to the unfortunate lecture which so excited my Orpheus Lodge friends' astonishment and dismay; and without wishing to be unnecessarily truthful, I must say it was, with the one exception noted above, the most insipid performance I ever heard an experienced lecturer deliver to a somnolent but otherwise practically defenseless audience.
At just the time [August, 1939] when the Fates were calling loudly for the utmost in human wisdom, insight, and valor, lest there should descend upon Western civilization a new and terrible destruction - the brutal might of Power-politics - this was the time when one of the most honored and belauded of our lecturers should summon us to listen to his pallid aesthetics and his perfectly innocuous prattle of this and that! The one fleeting spark of animation was when the speaker indulged in a passing gibe at Mr. Krishnamurti.
Mr. Kunz confesses that he wrote his spirited rejoinder (C.T., p. 303) in a mood of impatience. This fact is very obvious. Impatience usually leads to hasty and unconsidered speech; but even at that, it is difficult to see how anyone could have compressed so much incomprehension, confused thinking, and spiritual blindness into 300 words.
He clearly wishes to imply without exactly saying so, that the "notes" on Mr. Jinarajadasa's lecture (C.T., p. 239) are a tissue of mis-statements of facts. Well, I have done my painstaking best to discover any tampering with facts that would reflect discredit on Mr. Jinarajadasa. The only deviation from fact which I could find was that which assigns to Mr. Jinarajadasa a much longer term of the Vice-Presidency of the Society than was actually the case. Now, unless Mr. Kunz considers it something of a disgrace to be Vice-President of the Adyar Society at
all, (which is a perfectly possible point of view), this mistake seems to indicate a willingness on the part of the writers of the offending "Notes" to be more than fair to Mr. Jinarajadasa, whose early work is so generously commended, and whose later falling-off is so deeply regretted. It is certainly no indication of "spleen," or "pettiness."
When Mr. Kunz (in his haste) implies that the writers of the "Notes" in question wish to dissociate themselves from the gratitude to Mr. Jinarajadasa which they mention, will he blame me overmuch if I consider he is at this point either just a trifle insincere, or just a wee bit stupid? This remark also applies to his gibe (C.T., p. 303) - "How about a little loyalty to Truth in simple factual form for our Orphic friends?" There is here the very definite implication that Mr. Jinarajadasa's critics have distorted some fact (or facts) with unbrotherly and malicious intent. Now, unless Mr. Kunz will tell me what these are, I am afraid my opinion of his sincerity (or his intelligence) will remain one of great moderation.
Mr. Kunz's references to Brotherhood, brief as they are, prove that he has as yet failed to grasp the very first implication of the ideal of Universal Brotherhood as it is understood and taught in Theosophy . . . ."brotherhood (which means love and trust and good will)" he says. But he is really thinking of friendship - a much lesser and easier concept than that of Universal Brotherhood. It was not this sort of "Brotherhood" which I learned from Blavatsky's Theosophy. This was not the Brotherhood taught by Jesus. To all my brothers I will give the utmost love and good will of which my nature is capable; but trust? Ah, my poor Fritz! how profound is your incomprehension! Uncounted thousands of my brothers are men without decency, or honor, or courage, or comeliness. Many of them are traitors, and liars, and pimps; some are renegade priests, forsworn lovers, prostituted politicians, hypocritical teachers of religion. A very few of my brothers, by the sheer power and grace of their lordly natures have raised the intractable, rebellious stuff of human life to a plane of such universal comprehension and all-embracing compassion as to leave me with bowed head, lost in humility and wonder. But the vast majority of my brothers are deeply soiled with the stain of Earth; they are mostly very irresolute, these brothers of mine, and inconceivably stupid: but one and all they are my brothers, and never (O, Humanity!) shall I repudiate the relationship. For deep in the soul of the race there slumbers the great, the unappeasable Ideal. Engulfed in the hells of matter, deep in Nature's hypnotic trance, mankind cannot all forget its stupendous, its tragic, its glorious task. It was written that this strange creature, man, should commingle his subtle spiritual powers with the grosser energies of Nature, and thus learn to know himself in incarnate form, and in this form conquer, organize and direct Nature's blind energies and become her priest. Let no man fear that his life is fated to be without significance on this planet. This is a matter which is entirely in his own hands. By intelligent effort, the subtle can overpower and organize the gross; the hypnotized sleeper can awake and assist his long-buried spiritual and intellectual powers, and be free.
It was to hasten this process that the 19th century Theosophical Movement was launched: it was for this that H.P. Blavatsky devoted her large gifts and her immense energies.
In another article I intend to deal with the tragic side of this Movement. In the meantime, let not Mr. Kunz or Mr. Jinarajadasa feel that we of the Orpheus Lodge are in any way unfriendly toward them. Criticism does
not imply enmity or ill-feeling - with us at any rate. Who knows! perhaps one day they will join with us in a strong concerted effort to make the Adyar Society a Theosophical Society in very deed.
- Wm. C. Clark.
1148 Thurlow St., Vancouver, B.C.
THE ANNUAL ELECTION
Nominations for the office of General Secretary and seven members of the General Executive should be made by the Lodges before or during the month of March, so that returns may all be in by the 1st day of April. Experience has shown that it is impossible otherwise to issue voting papers, carry on the elections, get returns made, and scrutinize the ballots in time for a declaration in the June magazine. Secretaries of Lodges will kindly see that the matter is brought before their respective Lodges, and when nominations are made, have them sent at once to the General Secretary. Nominations must be made through a Lodge, and consent of parties nominated must have been previously obtained. Nominations must reach the General Secretary by April 1st, when the nominations close. They should be mailed at least a week before, and much delay is sometimes caused by leaving things till the last minute. Ballots should be sent out as early in April as possible and voting will close on May 27th so that scrutiny of the ballots may be set for June 1st. Nomination returns should be sent in a separate letter addressed to the General Secretary at No. 14, 5 Rockwood Place, Hamilton, Ontario.
THE GENERAL EXECUTIVE
A meeting of the Ontario members of the General Executive was held at 52 Isabella Street, Toronto, on Sunday afternoon, February 4. Routine business was gone through, and the remainder of the meeting was devoted to a discussion of the policy of the Magazine and its editorial control. Under the Constitution the editor has held that he is required to recognize the right of every member to freedom of opinion and the right to express such opinions. It is held by the four members who signed the letter in the last issue of this Magazine that such freedom antagonizes readers. It was decided after a long discussion and with some elisions to print Mr. Barr's letter which appears elsewhere. A letter from the Kitchener Lodge was also read, but ruled out as too long to print. This letter approved of the work of the present editor and desired no interference with the Magazine as it is. The Executive refused to pass a resolution authorizing the editor to ignore the "freedom" clause in the Constitution, which is the real point at issue. As it stands the judgment of the editor regarding what is honest opinion and what is merely provocative, must be respected. It was affirmed after the suggestion had been made that a candidate should be nominated to contest the office of General Secretary that no change was desired. The General Secretary was authorized to proceed with the usual election arrangements. A vote of thanks was passed to Mr. Jno. K. Bailey for his audit of the Society's accounts. The next meeting will be held on April 7.
BOOKS BY THE LATE GEORGE R. S. MEAD
Fragments of a Faith Forgotten; The Gospels and the Gospel; Thrice-Greatest Hermes, 3vols.; Apollonius of Tyana; Did Jesus Live 100 B.C.?; The World-Mystery; The Upanishads, 2 vols.; Plotinus; Echoes from the Gnosis, 11 vols.; Some Mystical Adventures; Quests Old and New; Orpheus; Simon Magus; The Pistis Sophia.
May be had from JOHN WATKINS 21 Cecil Court, Charing Cross Road, London, W.C., 2, England.
THE CANADIAN THEOSOPHIST
THE ORGAN OF THE THEOSOPHICAL SOCIETY IN CANADA
Published on the 15th of every month.
Editor - Albert E. 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, 23 Trench Street, Richmond Hill, Ont.
- Felix A. Belcher, 250 N. Lisgar St., Toronto.
- Maud E. Crafter, 330 Avenue Road (Apt. 16), Toronto.
- William A. Griffiths, 37 Stayner Street, Westmount, P.Q.
- Walter R. Hick, 4 Prospect St. 8, Hamilton, Ont.
- George I. Kinman, 46 Rawlingson Ave, Toronto, Ont.
- Wash. E. Wilks, 925 Georgia St. W., Vancouver
- Albert E. S. Smythe, 33 Forest Avenue, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada.
"The Magazine is a Good Companion," writes a Hamilton subscriber when sending a renewal dollar. We are aware there are differences of opinion about this, but it depends on whether the reader is studying Theosophy or merely looking for something to disagree with.
British, that is, English, subscribers please note, though we dislike to mention it, that 4/6 (four and six pence) does not now make a Dollar. We can take all kinds of Dollar bills, U.S. or Canadian, but when asking for a post office money order, not a postal note which does not pass in Canada, say that you want the equivalent of One Dollar.
"I have gained a great deal from The Canadian Theosophist," writes a subscriber from Travers, Alta. "Also it has been my medium for introducing Theosophy to those whom I found interested . . . . I have subscribed to the Magazine since about 1926 and most of the time see eye to eye with you. It is disappointing to see reaction of this nature arising within the Section, but for what it is worth you have my full support." Unsolicited letters like this are numerous.
A western member who brought us ten subscriptions last year, writes: I would like to add a word of appreciation along with others of the value of the magazine with yourself as editor. I like its open mindedness, and it seems to me that the high standard of teaching and concept of universal Theosophy that it maintains are just what is needed to give people a broader Theosophical outlook. I hope it continues much as it is for a long time to come.
Harry Richmond, a member of the Hamilton T.S. and Librarian of the Lodge, has enlisted and would like to keep in touch with the work in Canada and such other countries as he may enter, and would be glad to hear from any correspondents. His address is Henry Richmond, B 86309, 2nd Division Supply Column, R. G. A. S. C., C. A.S.F. It is stated that Mr. Richmond's father, who was in the army in the Great War, and was attached as a despatch bearer to the Allenby Army which entered Jerusalem, having been in advance of the troops was handed the keys of the city when he entered.
Dr. W.Y. Evens-Wentz begins an article on "Human Carnivorousness" in The Theosophical Forum for February, the reading of which should prevent delicately minded persons from ever eating animal flesh afterwards. The article is in two parts and if the second is any stronger than the first, the meat-packers may be expected to be after the author with gun-men. It would not be an exaggeration to say that most of the brutality in the world is the result of
eating flesh, and that in spite of Herr Hitler's vegetarian reputation. There is a spiritual evil which delights to obsess a delicately strung organism such as vegetarianism fosters, for the more refined and intellectual wickedness can more directly influence a medium of this description.
A Letter from Adyar signed by J.L. Davidge is rather long for our space. It describes the President as very busy both by night and day. "Nobody living some thousands of miles away from Adyar can have any conception of his great output of writing unless he reads all the journals to which he contributes. "The whole of the work at Adyar is centred upon the war with the set purpose of helping to win it." Most of the letter is a review of the December Theosophist war policies. Conscience, which has been a fortnightly, has become a weekly. Dr. Arundale is using it personally to fight Hitlerism and to hasten India's freedom. Madame Montessori was to arrive in Madras on November 4. She wishes to discover by experiment the needs of the Indian child. She will live at Olcott Gardens where her lectures will be given.
The decrease in membership in our National Society has been attributed by some critics to the "tone" of The Canadian Theosophist. This ought not to be a matter of argument merely, but for the study of facts and figures. It has been touched upon to some extent from time to time, but it is too extensive a subject to be dealt with in a short note. We hope to present a more comprehensive treatment of the subject next month and get at the real reason - among the many why there has been such a falling off of new members, not only in Canada but throughout the world. Also the fact that 50,000 members have retired from the Society as a whole in the last twenty years. Canada is doing better than many other National Societies, and as well as the average. As we pointed out some time ago there are more Theosophists to the million in Canada than in the United States. There is too much defeatist talk in our ranks.
We desire to express our gratitude to several kind friends who have sent in donations varying from Two Dollars up to considerable sums for the support of the Magazine. These come from the United States, from England, from Australia, but as the recent discussions indicate, the Magazine is a heavy tax on the normal revenue of the Society, and must rely upon voluntary assistance to enable it to be carried on. If our members put their hearts into a campaign to increase the circulation of the Magazine it could soon reach the point of self-support and raise the burden from the members, leaving their dues to be devoted to such services as the Executive might decide. We need several hundred dollars at present for the immediate needs of the Magazine, and if our readers really enjoy for a dollar what costs $1.62 to send to them, we think they will try and get their friends to subscribe. If each reader got three new subscribers in a year we would be on Easy Street.
The January Canadian Young Theosophist continues to improve (except perhaps in spelling), and the contents in this issue are certainly praiseworthy. There is a capital series of notes on the existence of the Masters, a disquisition on the symbolism of the seal of the T.S., and a sensible article on Neutrality in the matter of the War which ought to help towards honest thinking. "The unavoidable issue is that if one still prefers butter to bullets or peaches to putsches, if one still prefers to pursue the philosophy or religion of one's own bent instead of having forced on one the
crack-brained fantasy of some power-drunk lunatic that happens to be in the governmental driver's seat, then how can one be an honest neutral?" Or one might ask if one had the opportunity to choose as a world ruler between Herr Hitler and Mr. Franklin Roosevelt, what sort of person could be so neutral as to be unable to make a choice? It is noted that Mr. John Toren is back in Vancouver after two years' of lecturing in the United States.
A traveler from South America visiting France and Italy writes interestingly of his visit to the European Congress of the T.S. in Paris last year. "As a social meeting," he says, "(although not crowdy) and as an entertainment it was quite all right. No big theosophical worthies, only His Holiness Bishop Wedgwood! The Reincarnation of Little Gerald Leadbeater had sent a message. Arundale lieutenants developed his new hobby: the Manu and His Army! Mr. Marcault called the Manu `That Prince of Dictators'. One month later the war broke. We discussed with some friends on which side the army of the Manu was to be? But we decided to wait for further illumination." While in Italy he was present at the Leva Fascista, "the Fascist promotion where youngsters graduate in the Party, and I heard the tremendous pledge to Mussolini, very similar to the one required by Mrs. A.B. to E.S. Members." A translation of the pledge reads: "In the name of God and of Italy I solemnly pledge myself to follow without discussion the orders of the Duce and to help with all my strength and if necessary with my blood the Cause of the Revolution."
Speaking of Whitman's Democratic Vistas involved some references to Leaves of Grass, and incidentally it occurred to me that the two greatest Western Theosophists were Madame Blavatsky in Europe and Walt Whitman in America during the Nineteenth Century. The Twentieth Century is confirming this view. Whitman has been ridiculed for his "auctioneer's. catalogues" as some of the "supercilious infidels" have called them, in which he enumerates great groups of people, of places, of characteristics and so forth. It will be found that careful meditation on these classifications, identifying every single idea suggested, visualizing it, understanding it in all its relations, relating it interiorly to oneself intimately and intelligently, will serve the same purpose as psychoanalysis, and besides will tend to expand the consciousness to an extent spiritually, that is in compassion and sympathy, in a way that few other methods approach. Whitman lived in all the things he mentions. His readers are expected to do the same, and in that living lift themselves up into Life Itself. Those who have not read Whitman cannot do better than get a copy of the Everyman edition, No. 573, which contains the very best of the Leaves and also the splendid essay, Democratic Vistas.
It has not been thought advisable to continue the publication of letters from those who express their admiration of the contents and policy of The Canadian Theosophist, and we therefore express our thanks to those correspondents for their kind expressions. Mr. Herbert Howard writes from Rochdale in England, Mr. Frank Ranicar, from Wigan, England; Hon. Mrs. Davey, for the Blavatsky Association in England; Mr. Rene Baubiet from Buenos Aires, Argentina; Mrs. Frank Lewis (Irene H. Moody, the well-known author and poet of Vancouver) particularly in appreciation of the long service of Miss Crafter, and these and others pro and con will be replied to personally, while a few communications already in type before the Executive meeting have been allow-
ed to stand. The Editor requests that letters sent in on controversial topics be couched as far as possible in unprovocative language, and also that correspondents remember what the Editor himself frequently forgets, that too many critics have no sense of humor and are offended by things that other people laugh over.
Theosophy for February in an article on "The Astral Body," does good service in debunking Aristotle. He either deliberately or ignorantly distorted the Pythagorean doctrines and "Werner Jaeger, one of the most eminent of Greek scholars, says that the celebrated sketch of the development of Greek philosophy from Thales to Plato in the first book of Aristotle's Metaphysics is not historical at all, but was written to provide the principles Aristotle regarded as useful." Again, "whatever his intent, his general influence has been toward materialism, despite the fact that his system is classed as `idealistic'." And again: "It is all too obvious that Aristotle was no initiate. Plato taught that true knowledge is possible only when the impressions of the senses are entirely suspended by the will of the adept. The vision of the soul is 'simple, pure and unchangeable, without form, color, or human qualities: the God - our Nous.' If we read the Phaedo and the seventh book of the Republic in the light of the Yoga Aphorisms of Patanjali, the identity of teaching is at once apparent."
The following appeal has been sent out by Miss Mills, the Secretary-Treasurer of the Hamilton Lodge to inactive members, and it is so aptly phrased we submit it to the consideration of other Lodges for adoption or as a suggestion to something of the same kind, in attempting the solution of this ever present problem, the awakening of renewed interest in our lapsed members.
Co-operation, the manifestation of kindly feeling and sociability, the endeavor to assist by sympathy, whether in study, in class work, or in other ways will always help. "Dear friend: As a former member of the Hamilton Theosophical Society you will doubtless appreciate the fact that the work of the Society was never more necessary than now, when the practice of brotherhood, internationally and otherwise, seems to be very much in the background. With the small membership we now have the work of keeping the wheels of our organization turning falls on the shoulders of a few and we would like to increase our numbers so that the offices and duties could be passed around from year to year. Have you ever thought of becoming a member again? We would be glad to welcome you again, either immediately or at some time in the future, the near future we hope."
The Theosophist for December is a War number and represents Adyar militant with President Arundale as Field Marshal. He writes: "I want it to be very clear that the principles and policies set forth in this War issue of The Theosophist are those of the writers concerned - mainly Dr. Annie Besant and myself. The Theosophist is an organ for the personal expression of his views by the President, so that members of The Society may know what he is saying and doing as an individual, not as President." Dr. Arundale goes all out for the War and has no hesitation in stating what he conceives to be its objects. It is a universal war, he says, and neutrality is a crime. It is a war for peace and freedom, for universalizing Truth and Brotherhood, for Ahimsa (Harmlessness), to renew the world and enthrone justice, against the spirit manifest in Hitler and his associates, to free China from her martyrdom by Japan, to give freedom to India, for the resurrection of Poland, for the
release of Abyssinia, Albania, Austria, Czechosolvakia, to unite the East and West in a free Commonwealth, "to challenge wrong, injustice, cruelty, tyranny, oppression, wherever these may rear their ugliness." This ought to meet the totalitarian policy with a vengeance. Dr. Arundale carries the war on upon the Astral Plane as well as in his waking hours and spends his nights in active hostilities. In this he follows the lamented (or the lamentable) Leadbeater whom he resurrects from the pages of The Theosophist of February, 1916, where he describes a set - to which he then had with Bismarck. On a later page the same speculator is recorded as predicting that Julius Caesar along with Napoleon, Scipio, Akbar and others are going to federate Europe and spend all the huge sums designed for armament upon social improvements. This at any rate is more comforting than the prediction that Europe is going to be sunk beneath the waves and its errors wiped out in the drastic fashion its folly appears to deserve. After reading this December compilation the student may be pardoned if he fails to understand just what Theosophy does teach about War. But the truth is in himself.
The O. E. Critic for December is a more than usually excellent issue with special articles on Krishnamurti and Robert Crosbie as well as many useful comments in "At the Periscope." The article on Krishnaji is based on the English translation of Ludwig Renault's French book, "Instructor of the World" a literal translation which escapes the connotation of "World Teacher." We cannot have too much of Krishnamurti under such auspices. The article on Robert Crosbie is the result of a perusal of what Mr. Willard wrote about him in our December issue to relieve his mind on what were evidently some old scores. Our desire to provide historical pabulum for our students as well as for future historians invites what The Critic regards as unbrotherly revelations, but all such records stand as evidence against the writer as well as his subject. A correspondent asks us to republish Mr. Willard's letter from The Lamp of December, 1899. Probably Mr. Willard has forgotten this, and we do not think it necessary to reprint that communication at present. Students who have preserved the more or less valuable pages of The Lamp are no doubt amused at the change of front. But as we reminded our readers in our October article on "Digging up Old Bones," nearly everybody in the Theosophical Movement has changed his or her mind since 1891, and this is not necessarily a reason for censure but often something to be praised. The open mind implies the willingness to change with the access of more light. Otherwise there would be no progress. The occultist, said one of our teachers, should be ready to drop all his views at any moment on receiving new evidence. The trouble is most of these variables do not insist on the new evidence, but change on faith. This is something which we think readers of The Lamp and of The Canadian Theosophist will perceive, thus leading them towards that stability of knowledge which is so devoutly to be desired. Robert Crosbie certainly changed his mind as those who have read The Searchlight are fully aware, though some would conceal this fact. We no more desire to rake up Crosbie's old statements than Willard's. Both have changed their minds and this is the point to be noted. Crosbie out of his experience became a changed man, with a clean heart and a right spirit, a renewed spirit within him. Personally I think his probation at Point Loma had much to do with his metamorphose. He became a singularly discreet and careful student and a wise counselor in Theosophy, nor did he think it necessary to be anonymous lest his previous
record might stand against him. He founded the U.L.T. and has convinced many good men like B.P. Wadia that independence is better than following idols, though we fear it has not quite extinguished the desire to set some up. Real brotherhood and tolerance will never be shocked by the previous record of any worker, or who among us would stand much of a chance with the Masters? I hope these changes of mind will continue until all Adyardom awakens to the facts to which they have blinded themselves for so many years. Krishnamurti, for instance! We have to thank Dr. Stokes also for his kindly references to our Canadian developments.
We hope that our readers will carefully peruse Mr. Barr's letter which is published by desire of the members of the General Executive whose views he represents, as it covers all the objections that have been made against the editorship of the Magazine. These issues have frequently been discussed, and the older members of the Society are generally aware of the why and wherefore of the conditions we are trying to meet and overcome. The policy of the Society in Canada is the real difficulty, and that difficulty no one minimizes, nor does any one on the Executive desire to change this policy. The policy briefly is to present Theosophy as it was brought to the Western World by Madame Blavatsky. Not, of course, in any dogmatic fashion of requiring mental or spiritual submission. The very opposite of that is inherent in the Blavatsky thought. We have no objection to anybody believing anything he pleases. What is objected to is the insistence that the teachings of some other exponent of different views should be allowed to supersede the original teaching of Theosophy and suppress it. Mr. Belcher stated that the withdrawal of the Western members twenty years ago was due to the obnoxious manner in which this Magazine dealt with this subject. The objection was made to the compulsory acceptance of the whole fabric of Mr. Leadbeater's theories with the Liberal Catholic Church, the World Teacher and other matters on which we wished the members left free to exercise their judgment, but which were put forward as essential parts of the Theosophical Society, a position which has never been accorded to Madame Blavatsky's writings at any time. There is no desire to interfere with the freedom of those who wish to worship Mr. Leadbeater or Mr. Krishnamurti or any other exponent of new revelations. Blavatsky brought nothing new, and indeed has been charged with plagiarism. We only ask for freedom for all, but the opponents of Blavatsky seem to think that this is too great a handicap over their several pretensions and wish for favored treatment. This is the cause of what friction has occurred. Mr. Barr states in his letter that visitors to his home are frequently repelled by the things they see in the Magazine. I am frequently repelled by things I see in the newspapers, but I do not cease to read the newspapers on that account. If Mr. Barr fails to call attention to the good things in the Magazine it is just too bad, for he admits that there are some good things in it. The majority of our members and all our numerous subscribers approve the magazine because they find more good in it than otherwise. The people who excuse themselves from reading a Theosophical magazine at all, because there are some articles in it they do not understand or do not like, are not very anxious enquirers for truth, or very willing to sacrifice their prejudices for the sake of other people's liberty. In Ireland I used to know people who would not go to church because the preacher wore a white surplice, while others refused to
attend where the minister wore a black gown. Such people are not really concerned about religion. It is much the same in Theosophical research. We find truth where we look for it, and the tender minds that are alarmed at strong language may have to toughen their sensibilities before they pass the initiations of service.
The Indian mail that came in on January 18 had taken 51 days according to the letter dates, and this is an index of what the war has done in upsetting the usual sea services. The Theosophical Worker for December is taking on the color and atmosphere of a Curate's Home, and while it is all well meant, there is a great deal about it to make the judicious grieve. The leading article, "Face to Face," will appeal to the devotees and the worshipers who are always on the qui vive to worship something, no matter what, a Buddha's tooth, a nail from the True Cross, or a relic of St. Francis. No doubt also that it suits India in some respects, but for the practical West, it is not the note that carries conviction. We have all read about Mr. Stiggins and Mr. Chadband and most of all, Mr. Pecksniff, and Theosophical writers who indulge in religious or pious disquisition should make themselves familiar with the style and conversation of these gentlemen - and avoid it. But The Worker has been making a laudable effort to providing a friendly account of the domestic atmosphere of Adyar, and we should be grateful for the intimate pictures it presents. The Adyar Lodge, of which Professor D.D. Kanga is president, was entertained on the occasion of their silver wedding anniversary by the president and Mrs. Kanga. Dr. Kanga gave the members some useful advice which may serve to activate some of our Lodges in Canada who have abandoned the Lodge meetings, much to the detriment of the members. His advice may be accepted. "It is not enough to attend Lodge meetings regularly. We should go to the meetings with the idea not of getting some benefit for ourselves, but with the idea of giving something, contributing something to the success of the meeting. A sympathetic and helpful attitude is necessary to do this. We can do much by our silent, loving and helpful thoughts throughout the meeting even if we may not take an active part in the deliberations and discourses. You may not be able to lecture yourself, but you can help the lecturer immensely by your sympathetic response to what he is saying and by the mental atmosphere which you create. I am sure we shall be able to make our Lodge very active if we come to the meeting with this helpful and sympathetic attitude of mind. By this I do not mean there should not be discussion and criticisms. By all means let us have these, but they should be healthy, helpful and constructive and not destructive. Let no one throw cold water on anybody's enthusiasm for work, but let there always be an encouraging, cooperative attitude, and I am sure with every member in such a splendid attitude we shall be able to do good work during the year." This advice may be directed towards the Canadian Lodges which in too many instances neglect the "assembling of themselves together," and by that neglect lose all the strength and vigor that comes from intimate association, and the growth of the sense of corporate unity without which no Lodge can pull its weight. Adyar is getting cluttered up with Red Letter days till its calendar is like that of one of the Churches with holy days and holidays. The latest appears to be December 19, Day of Compassion. The visit of Madame Montessori is given three pages and such a world figure as she has become certainly merits the attention. Perhaps the following sentences from her Armistice Day address
will convey the central thought of her educational system. "I feel that I am the faithful servant of a part of humanity which has great powers, but which has not been sufficiently understood. This powerful part of humanity, this group of human entities of which we are all in need, is the child. The children are not those weak beings that we feel need our help. The children possess in their souls a value which must be made use of by society. My experience which I feel gives some value to my message is that the children are capable of feeling with and understanding us adults, and from my own personal experience I can say, of giving us help. Our century has been called the century of the child. It is a century to which that part of humanity which before was of no importance must now come forward. Let us give space and freedom to the children, so that they in their freedom may give out their revelation to us. When we offer to them a small amount of knowledge, let us leave them free, so that they may reveal to us that they have learned much more than we intended giving to them. Let these come to us. Let them show us that many of those problems, which are difficult to us, have a very easy solution I might with all persuasion use an idea belonging to our Christian religion, that the child is our guide on the road to heaven. The child is for us a teacher. The world is in need of the child, because the adults are showing that they are incapable of bearing alone the weight of such conflicting civilizations. The adult alone is not sufficient. It is necessary to have the adult together with the children, the souls of both, to see that many of the problems that trouble society today are solved." Messages from the various National Societies (still known as sections at Adyar) are given and we feel complimented in the section "Youth to the Forefront," in having a considerable quotation from our magazine used in an introduction to the reports on the work of the Young Theosophists.
THE FRATERNIZATION CONVENTION
Mr. G. Cardinal Le Gros, chairman of the Convention Committee writes that the dates of the 1940 Convention will be June 29th and 30th; the place Niagara Falls, Ontario - probably at the General Brock Hotel. He hopes that this will be convenient for everybody, a hope which we shall all do well to assist each other to realize. This ought to be the biggest and best of all these gatherings. The Youth Session should form an interesting feature of the proceedings, and we trust that the prejudices of some of the elders will have greatly diminished.
Fraternization Convention Committee:
Chairman: G. Cardinal Le Gros, 1702 Delaware Avenue, Detroit, Mich.
Treasurer: Miss E. Lewis, Cincinnati, Ohio.
Miss Oba Garside, 32 Lonsdale Rd., Toronto, Ont.
N. W. J. Haydon, 564 Pape Ave., Toronto, Ont.
E. L. T. Schaub, Toledo, Ohio.
S. Wylie, Detroit, Mich.
Miss A. G. Mills, 31 Fairleigh Ave. North, Hamilton, Ont.
BOOKS ON THEOSOPHICAL SUBJECTS which have passed the tests of time and use Supplied on request. Forty years' experience at your service. Let me know your wishes.
N. W. J. HAYDON, 564 PAPE AVE., TORONTO
BOOKS BY CHARLES JOHNSTON
- Bhagavad Gita ..... cloth $1.25......... leather $1.75
- Crest Jewel of Wisdom .......... cloth $1.25
- Great Upanishads, vol. I. ...........cloth $1.50
- Parables of the Kingdom ......... paper .50
- Patanjali's Yoga Sutras ........cloth $1.25
- Song of Life paper...... .75
THE QUARTERLY BOOK DEPARTMENT
P. O. Box 64, Station O. New York City
TO END BICKERING
Editor, Canadian Theosophist: - Dr. Wilks asks that the members of the Executive Committee, who wish to bring about a change in the size and policy of the Magazine, bring the matter into the open. I do not know of any member of the Executive who desires to do either of these things. The size of the Magazine is determined largely by Revenue. At present we are spending every cent of the dues (approximately $750.) together with an additional $500. a year to retain the Magazine at its present size. Obviously, this can continue only if the subscribers and friends send in donations. The Magazine costs the members $1.62 per annum and is sold to subscribers at $1. per annum.
The policy of the Magazine in adhering to the theosophy of the Secret Doctrine is the only policy which is acceptable to the members of the Society and to the Executive. As to what is wrong with the Magazine apart from policy and size: the answer is to be found in Miss Crafter's letter in the January issue and the Editor's endorsement of this. If the members do not know now what is wrong with the Magazine then further words may not clarify it for them.
So frequently the value of the Magazine is destroyed by one or more bitter, sarcastic and egotistical articles or letters which lead to bickering and guarrelsome letters in reply. "Surely this is not Theosophy" is a remark I have heard from intelligent enquirers who have picked up the Magazine in my home. A growing group of our members is convinced that tone the Magazine is one of the causes of our steadily declining membership; we have dropped from 960 members to 300. This group may be a minority in the Society but in Toronto Lodge many of our most active members hold this opinion. The Theosophical Movement should be the logical centre for the many individuals and groups of students who are now outside the Society.
Dr. Wilks, in his previous letter, pointed out that mere quantity was not important - and everyone will agree with this. Nevertheless, if the movement in Canada is to become a more potent force in the intellectual and spiritual life of this country, it must be made capable of attracting and using the creative ability of a far larger number of our more intelligent citizens. I feel that to raise the standard of the Magazine would be the first step toward this. This might disturb the few who are interested only in the personality and its reactions, but surely we can have faith in the Divine Power within man to respond to the highest and best in the Theosophical Message. Canada stands at the door of her great destiny and the Society can make an important contribution to this.
To use words of the late Fred Housser, whose living Theosophy influenced so many persons, "Invite the soul of Canada to take incarnation" and do this by providing that soul with a fitting vehicle for its expression in the esoteric life of this country. Make the Magazine attractive to the highest types of mind. "Produce great individuals, the rest will follow." - What do the members think about it? - Yours truly,
- D.W. Barr.
Room 1487, 1 Simcoe St.,
Editor, Canadian Theosophist: - I have read quite a few of the replies to the Questionnaire, which Mr. Griffiths forwarded to me a week or so ago. The replies to most of the questions have no particular bearing, as far as I can see, on our work as a National Society, and are only of academic interest, if of any.
But the replies regarding the Magazine are remarkably consistent and point to definite and widely held conclusions on the subject. First of all, practically all reply in the affirmative to the question, `Do you think the Magazine helps to keep the members interested and active?' and a fair proportion of these emphasize their satisfaction with the Magazine with a `certainly do' or `definitely yes.' Equally emphatic is the general conclusion that the Magazine is not valued as propaganda to interest enquirers, partly, I gathered, because it frequently lacks matter which would interest or be understood by enquirers, and partly because it is thought that the open and fearless expression of opinion from different sides upon controversial subjects, and the frank direct criticism of the sayings and actions of those who put themselves publicly forward as spiritual teachers, may be misunderstood and regarded as evidence of a lack of true fraternal spirit.
Of course, it is true, that not one in a million who has not been initiated into the spirit and attitude implicit in Theosophy will realize that Brotherhood has very little to do with maintaining amiable agreement on controversial subjects, and none at all when at the expense of truth.
And it might be as well, whether or not the Magazine is going to be used to interest newcomers in Theosophy, that the Editor should make clear from time to time the principles underlying this attitude to life called Brotherhood; for it is the practical exemplification of this attitude in the policy and management of the Magazine which has made it valued amongst discriminating Theosophists all over the world, as well as by our own members.
I would like further to suggest that a page or two of the Magazine, be set aside each month for the presentation of theosophical teaching calculated to attract the interest of the intelligent enquirer. It is not long, wordy expositions which are required, but a number of short snappy vital articles half a column or a column in length, dealing with those aspects of Theosophy most certain to attract and hold the interest of the enquirer or young student, and thus give them an opportunity of examining the fundamental theosophical teaching. Will you please read these suggestions to the Executive and let me know what they think of them. Yours fraternally,
- W. E. Wilks.
Editor, Canadian Theosophist: - The recent display of unbrotherly love pub-lished in the January Canadian Theosophist is certainly no credit to the Magazine, nor to Theosophy. It is quite evident why more outsiders are not attracted to the Theosophical Society. The letters referred to might perhaps serve as a good example as to the cause of wars.
Theosophy is too grand a thing to be soiled by such petty squabbling. Let us hope that the policy of the Magazine can be settled in future without the fireworks.
It might be well to remember that the solution to all our problems lies within ourselves. Sincerely yours,
- Jeffrey Le Marquand.
3839 Marcil Ave.,
Jan. 22, 1940.
Editor, Canadian Theosophist: - Dear Friends: I regret very much to read in the last issue of your magazine of the effort to change the open-minded policy of the publication. My sole reason for subscribing to The Canadian Theosophist is my desire to support a magazine which adheres to Theosophy
instead of a caricature of Theosophy. Should your policy of teaching Truth, and of free discussion, degenerate into the narrow bigotry of some other "Theosophical" magazines, I will no longer care to read it. Since I am not a member of any theosophical society, merely a humble student and subscriber, I have little voice in the matter. But there is my whisper. Best regards!
-William G. Spence.
Albuquerque, N.M., U.S.A.
Jan. 6th, 1940.
Editor, Canadian Theosophist: - I was glad to see Mr. Burch's letter in the January C.T. giving a few facts about Finland. For the further information of your readers I might add that Baron Mannerheim is not himself a Finn but a native of Sweden, who held a commission in the army of the Russian Tsar.
On the outbreak of the Russian revolution in 1917 he transferred to Germany and served under the Kaiser, and in return for his services was given permission to lead the army of 10,000 Germans who invaded Finland in 1918 in order to crush the Socialist Republic which had been set up there.
Since then General Mannerheim has remained in Finland in command of an army trained along fascist lines, and completely dominating the government of the country.
It is estimated that 30,000 of the most progressive of the Finnish people were executed in 1918, and a similar reign of terror was inaugurated in 1930 when thousands of Finns were forced to flee the country or face death and imprisonment. It is not generally known that martial law was again imposed on Finland late last year, when another massacre of the workers and peasants was imminent just before the Russian army moved in.
Under the Tsar Russia was termed "Holy Russia" - today we are told "Finland is a holy land!" Is history about to repeat itself? There is such a thing as Karma.
- K. Middleton.
2873 Inlet Avenue,
January 18th, 1940.
HATRED DYING OUT
Editor, Canadian Theosophist: - Now, that the conflict has started and is in full swing, students of the Great Teaching should put their houses in order. The bewhiskered adage, "They also serve who only stand and wait" is the keynote of our duty.
Perhaps personal conviction or destiny bars the way to serving in a physical capacity in this struggle, yet the plain duty of such waiting is preparation to serve when the sword is sheathed. The wounds to be bound will be psychic, emotional, racial; the sword to be wiped of blood that of misunderstanding; the boundaries we allot must have the measurements of international freedom; the conference table we sit at, that of Brotherhood.
That already the intense, blind hatred of the last war has weakened in its dye is something to be very, very joyful about - a demonstration to be chalked up to the credit of Those Behind The Scenes.
We, in the Americas are particularly suited for this future role with our past clear of the old, worn-out formulas, our present proved in the capacity to serve.
Gazing with the physiognomic eye over the events as the scroll enrolls, we see, with amazing clearness, the truth of the teaching the Great Ones have allowed us to know.
Ours, now, the duty of preparation - be it to fill in the capacity of midwife, wet-nurse or teacher for this new infant Humanity, lying in the embryonic womb of Time. Whether our part be in
obscurity or the world-stage, tongue, pen, brains, hands and feet must do their part to give the crumbs of hope to what will be the despair of our brothers - the crumbs that will, like the Biblical loaves and fishes, remain to fill innumerable baskets.
Let us rouse ourselves from the paralyzing effects of futility to know and do our part - to be ready - when the conflict is over. Wherever we are or whatever our destiny, we have in our keeping the bread and wine of the Great Teaching, the Brotherhood of Man - and its component part, the Doctrine of Reincarnation and Karma, with its hope and dignity for all Mankind. Very fraternally yours,
- Elsa Whittaker.
115 Queensdale Ave., Toronto, Ont.,
November 9, 1939.
BACK TO CHRISTIANITY
Editor, Canadian Theosophist: - The immense strength of the Jewish ideology with its offshoot Christianity, is evident again and again as every effort to overpass it is subtly sucked back into the whirlpool of its materialism. Jehovah becomes again the God of nations, in spite of available teaching as to the evil of anthropomorphism; and the personal conception creeps, in a stultifying way, into what should be a higher spiritual freedom. Witness the original Theosophical Society with its Liberal Catholic Church; Mrs. Bailey with her "respiritualization of the Catholic Churches;" "The Tibetan" with his "Master Jesus," and now the Canadian Theosophist with its "development of Christianity in the last 75 years." What exactly does the phrase mean? Why hark back to old names and ideals which have been so marvelously interpreted in the Secret Doctrine and in Isis Unveiled in order that they may be left behind? It is certain that "Back to Christianity" is utterly incompatible with "Back to Blavatsky."
Anyone who has read with attention the two books by H.P. Blavatsky will marvel at any attempt to bolster up a religion which has brought about the present state of "civilization" in Europe, and is therefore responsible for the present war, facts easily proved by such students. Faithfully yours,
- A. A. Morton.
THE PRATYEKA BUDDHAS
Editor, Canadian Theosophist: - The letter in your December issue signed by fifteen Magazine subscribers is constantly referred to as "Mrs. Henderson's letter." I should like to say that before thinking out the form of its text I consulted several subscribers in this locality and took and embodied their views with my own. It is unfortunate that Mr. Belcher's objections caused editorial omission of a passage in the letter, for no possible twisting by the Executive could have made that passage read as a claim that "Mrs. Henderson" (or the combined signatories) represented the views of three hundred subscribers - as they now put it! Yet, as fears for a projected change in the conduct of the Magazine were expressed even more definitely by me in the October issue (last page), it is only fair, especially to the signatories of the Round Robin letter, to deal with the allegations put at my door this month (January) in the letter headed "General Executive." The idea of a probable swing-over from the Blavatsky tradition to the Besant-Leadbeater perversions of it is not as humorously fantastic as the General Executive would have us think, nor was it created by a "strawman," unless Mr. Belcher can be so designated, for it is the result of a well-founded impression created by himself.
The only occasion I have had of meeting and talking with Mr. Belcher occurred some years ago when he visited the
H.P.B. Library and was made welcome. He spoke with enthusiasm of his Secret Doctrine Class and I responded warmly, until it transpired that his students were deep in the study of Vol. III; when I inquired how he squared the H.P.B. tradition with Mrs. Besant's alterations, suppressions, and even actual reversal of the teaching on the point upon which hangs the whole Doctrine of the Heart and of Renunciation of Nirvana by Nirmanakayas, notably the passage in The Voice of the Silence (The Two Paths) describing the status of the Pratyeka Buddha as one of spiritual selfishness, with H.P. Blavatsky's explanatory note thereon. This passage and its note was omitted in "The Voice of the Silence" edited by Mrs. Besant, and in Vol. III "Secret Doctrine," p. 416, she gives in a footnote her own version of the Pratyeka Buddha's status in flat contradiction of H.P.B.'s, and makes a pitiable pretense that H.P.B.'s long and important explanation on the subject had been "set down in a careless moment" which she, A.B., had been instructed to correct! ** Incidentally W.M. McGovern the authority on Mahayana Buddhism, The Sutta Nipata, and other reliable sources too numerous to mention here, bear out, as a tenet of the Mahayana, full confirmation of the Blavatsky definition of the Pratyeka Buddha. In our interview Mr. Belcher made light of and evaded this issue and when pressed on it he left me with the indelible conviction, shared by Mrs. Fielding who was present, that he stood for Besant rather than for Blavatsky. As Mrs. Besant, in her turn, backed C.W. Leadbeater, upholding him even in a cabled submission to his ruling, it is not a far cry to foresee any alteration in the policy of the Magazine as likely to reflect Mr. Belcher's preferences at the expense of the Blavatsky tradition.
To clear up another loose end I must mention that I am not a member of the Blavatsky Association as the Editor alleges, though the Association has my friendliest interest and sympathy and is upheld by our Library as the most reliable source of the literature of early Theosophy to be found in the old country. I am afraid that the H.P.B. Library, turned over to me nearly twenty years ago by Mrs. A.L. Cleather, the personal pupil of Madame Blavatsky, represents the only credentials and "references" I can produce, but they suffice.
May I add, from the standpoint of the Blavatsky teaching, how splendidly in line with it is the front page article in the January Canadian Theosophist? Cyrus Field Willard sets the keynote of high endeavor for the present year. Karmic law and its corollary, Reincarnation, spread through all possible channels into the aura of storm-tossed humanity provides the only human hope that is not a fleeting Maya. It is the realization that whatever happens to the personal man, of suffering, hardship or extinction, the Ego does not die, but ever returns again to weave experience into the pattern of the Soul, in its evolution through matter, from darkness to light.
- H. Henderson.
The H.P.B. Library,
348 Foul Bay Rd., Victoria, B.C.
January 20th, 1940.
**[[Digital Editor note: The "HPB" that charged Besant to make this "correction" was a young child of Chakravarti's, who Besant believed was Blavatsky reincarnated, according to an earlier statement in the CT.]]
The General Executive,
The Theosophical Society in Canada,
I have audited the books and accounts of the Theosophical Society in Canada for the fiscal year ended 30th June, 1939, and certify that the statement of Funds appearing on page 145 of the July issue of The Canadian Theosophist, is in accordance therewith. Fraternally yours,
(signed) JNO. R. BAILEY, Honorary Auditor.
THEOSOPHY AND THE MODERN WORLD
Conducted by W. Frank Sutherland
MORE ABOUT EARTHQUAKES
More information has come to hand about the Vancouver engineer, Edgar C. Thrupp, who has been predicting earthquakes and magnetic phenomena with uncanny accuracy. Four years ago he wrote the Turkish Government and told them that they might expect a severe earthquake in 1939, and again early in December of last year he again warned them. In the last four years he has scored about forty times about earthquakes, auroras, magnetic storms and so on.
Thrupp has written a book, An Engineer Looks at the Universe which the present writer has not seen, and from all accounts has put forward new theories concerning the nature of the ether, gravitation and the like. Whether or not these theories are a rationalization of the methods he uses in prediction is hard to say, at any rate these latter would seem to be straight -forward enough, and to depend almost entirely on astronomical data of one sort or another. The position of the planets is of much importance.
Simply stated, his contention is that earthquakes are the result of gravitational forces between the various planets. They have a pull on the earth's surface in the same way that the sun and moon have in causing tides. When the planets all pull together in a certain combination of forces, earthquakes result.
Thrupp is quoted by Stuart Keate in the Star Weekly of January 20, as saying:
"It is possible to predict the dates of all the most destructive cases at any time in advance, to within a few days.
"One uncertain factor is the relative weakness of the earth's crust, and that appears to affect the dates of failure to the extent of about seven to 10 days on either side of the calculated date.
"The locality of failure cannot be predicted long in advance, but may be detected by careful local observations for small diurnal movements of ground for two or three weeks in advance of the specified periods of risk.
"The fundamental results of my research work are the development of a new theory of the ether and a new law of gravitation. These have been tested and found correct, by predictions of auroras, magnetic storms and earthquakes."
As said before, one can admire Thrupp's work in prediction without accepting his theories of gravitation and the like. Not that these may be wrong; they appear to be so widely at variance with generally accepted theories that they should be viewed with some considerable degree of circumspection.
To Thrupp, for instance, matter is not convertible into energy, gravitation is due to ether pressure and ether is a peculiar form of gas, and the sun is not losing weight at all but is receiving its energy in one way and is giving it out in another.
His latest predictions are:
March 1-2 - Strong magnetic storm and hurricanes.
March 17-18-19 - Very strong magnetic storm and hurricanes.
May 1-2 - Strong magnetic storm.
July 7-8-9-10 - Great magnetic storms and hurricanes.
July 20-21-22 - A magnetic condition very remarkable features, will produce diffuse auroras over most of the sky. [sic]
July 20-August 5 - This period will bring most destructive earthquake of this century. The earthquake damage will compare with the disasters in Asia Minor on August 13 and September 5,
1822, when 20,000 people were killed.
Sept. 28-October 4 - A strong magnetic storm.
October 20-November 10 - Second period of greatest earthquake risk. This will compare with the disasters in Chile, November 25, 1822, when 900 miles of the Chilean coast were affected.
October 27-November 3 - Strong magnetic storm with stormy weather and tornadoes.
- W. F. S.
THE ASTROLOGY OF EARTHQUAKES
In the last Canadian Theosophist I noted the article on Edgar C. Thrupp of Vancouver. So far as the dates July 20 - Aug. 5 and Oct. 20 - Nov. 10 are concerned they agree with the astrology of earthquakes - since at these dates the sun is entering the fixed signs of Leo (July) and Scorpio (October) and so would be in bad aspect to the series of planets in the fixed sign Taurus.
I have been looking up earthquakes in Raphael's Mundane Astrology. It is said that 'quakes are caused by eclipses and through the position of planets in the four fixed signs - and more especially in Taurus and Scorpio. Quakes caused by eclipses usually take place in countries where the eclipse falls at noon or midnight. But if there are any planets in fixed signs at the moment of eclipse 'quakes will occur in the part of the world where these planets are either rising, culminating, setting or on the Nadir.
Earthquakes happen more frequently when Uranus, Saturn, Jupiter and Mars are in Taurus or Scorpio. Mars enters Taurus on Feb. 17 and remains there till April 2. Saturn enters Taurus on March 20, and Jupiter on May 16. Uranus is already in that sign. These three heavy planets will still be in Taurus at the end of 1940.
Earthquakes also happen in localities where great conjunctions of planets fall on the cusp of the fourth house. On January 6, 1940, Mars and Jupiter were conjunct in the first degree of Aries. On February 11, Mars will be conjunct Saturn in Aries 26o, and will conjunct Uranus in Taurus 19o on May 16. Jupiter and Saturn are conjunct on August 9 in Taurus 14o.
Raphael also says that Jupiter in Taurus when conjunct, opposite, or parallel to Mercury is one of the most prolific sources of earthquakes. Mercury is conjunct Jupiter on May 5, parallel on May 7, but Jupiter has now only reached Aries 27o.
The only perfect aspects are Mercury parallel to Jupiter on August 26 and October 6 square on August 21 and opposite on October 13.
It is also necessary to study the quarterly "Ingress" figures (the moment when the Sun enters the cardinal signs of Aries, Cancer, Libra, and Capricorn) and to study the New Moon nearest each Ingress, especially with reference to malefic planets in the fourth house.
Raphael says countries and localities where earthquakes will occur can be known in two ways. First by reference to the signs ruling countries and cities and secondly by noting the exact longitude in which eclipses, planetary conjunctions, and positions at the four "Ingresses" are vertical to the Meridian or Nadir. The signs in which such eclipses, conjunctions, etc., occur should also be noted.
There are only two eclipses in 1940, both of the Sun. The first of these is the annular eclipse of the Sun on April 7, 1940, beginning 5 h 17 min. p.m. G. M. T. in longitude 168o 36'W., latitude 8o44S; the Sun and Moon will be in Aries 17o. An eclipse of the Sun in the second decanate of Aries is supposed to foretell imprisonment and sadness of some king and danger of death to him; The corruption of trees bearing fruit, and of growing things on the earth.
The second eclipse is to be on October 1, a total eclipse beginning 10 hr. 8 m. a.m., G. M. T. at longitude 65o1'W., latitude 8o0'N in Libra 8o. A solar eclipse in the first decan of Libra corrupts the air, causes pestilence, and a scarcity and dearness of corn.
With reference to severe storms and earthquakes: Raphael's Almanac for 1940 foretells:
February - terrific storms or a mighty tidal wave threaten disaster in about 20oW. longitude in the Atlantic.
March - Hurricanes and tornadoes probable in and about the Caribbean Sea.
April - West Indies troubled, politically as well as by natural phenomena. Severe earthquake is probable in Japan. Conditions adverse in India where a famine is also threatened.
May - Weather in Eastern U.S.A. and of the East coast very bad; may cause shipping casualty. Seismic or other natural disturbances are threatened in Eastern China.
June - Severe earthquakes in Japan, possibly also in Eastern China. Earthquake also threatened in East Indies.
July - Further seismic disturbances threatened in Japan, especially at the end of July or early in August.
August - Misfortunes pronounced along about 17o East longitude. Serious earthquakes in places as far apart as Italy and Japan, and the East and West Indies are likely to occur during the four weeks after the lunation. Trying weather is to be looked for on the Eastern seaboard of U.S.A., and a hurricane causing destruction of property in Florida may occur near August 25.
September - Better political prospects and an improvement in the weather - compared with previous months.
October - Floods threatened in the Indus valley, India. Earth tremors and natural disturbances in areas widely apart, including the West Indies.
November - New Moon Oct. 30, 10.03 p.m. G. M. T.. Indian affairs most unsettled, also threat of serious earthquake. At end of November or early in December severe earthquake probable, particularly in Japan or East Indies.
December - The world at large will now be in the throes of the birth of new sociological and ideological conceptions. These changes will be most evident along 15o East longitude, along which tremors, magnetic storms and atmospheric disturbances are also probable.
(Both Vesuvius and Etna are practically on the line of 15oE.)
According to signs, Taurus rules the countries of Ireland, Persia, Poland, Asia Minor, Georgia, Caucasus, Grecian Archipelago, Cyprus, White Russia, and the cities and towns of Dublin, Leipsic, Mantua, Parma, Palermo, Rhodes, St. Louis, Ashton-under-Lyne.
I should like to see an article by Mr. Hughes on "Canada and Mundane Astrology" - We are neglected by most writers.
- Jessie E. Walker.
S. Porcupine, Ont.
AMONG THE LODGES
The Wednesday Welfare Group of the Toronto Theosophical Society held a very successful bridge and euchre in the social rooms at the Hall on Isabella street, on Wednesday afternoon, January 10th, to raise money for materials which they knit and sew into garments which are passed on to the Neighborhood Workers' Association and placed with needy families. Mrs. Wm. G. Daly, Convener of the Welfare Group, was hostess at the tea-hour assisted by Mrs. R. Illingworth, Mrs. A. Holden, Mrs. J.M. Haig, Mrs. H.S. Smith, Mrs. H.J. Munther, Mrs. E. Jardine, Mrs. K. Corbett, Miss S. Pedlar. Miss Mary Stuart, Bridge Convener, presented the lucky prizes which were won by Mrs. T.S. Hubbard, Mrs. H.J. Cable, Mrs. Percy Knight and Miss J. R. Gibson.
During the afternoon the guests were entertained by Margaret Morrison who sang a delightful group of songs, accompanied by Dot Elford at the piano. Mrs. E.B. Dustan thanked the artists on behalf of the Society. - M.K.
On the 9th January the Montreal Lodge held their annual business meeting, and the following officers were elected: Hon. Pres., Miss C. Burroughs; President, Mr. David Thomas; Vice-President, Mr. J. LeMarquand; Treasurer, Mr. W.A. Griffiths; Assistant Treasurer, Mrs. W.A. Griffiths; Secretary, Mrs. H. Lorimer; Librarian, Mrs C. Erbert. It was much regretted that for the first time in many years Miss Burroughs was unable to be with us at this meeting. In addition to the officers of the lodge, Miss Lebel again consented to be Convener of the Social Committee and Mrs. Edith Goossens was again appointed Auditor. - J. C. L.
Toronto is having special lectures at 52 Isabella Street this month. Mr Samuel H. Wylie, president of the Detroit T.S. is to speak on Sunday evening, the 18th, on "The Conquest of Illusion" at 7.30. On the 25th Mr. G Rupert Lesch, of Erie, Pa., will begin a course of four lectures, the Sunday evening lecture at 7.30 being on "Science, Religion and Theosophy;" while at 8 o'clock he will speak on Monday evening the 26th, on "The Deeper Significance of Reincarnation and Karma;" Tuesday, on "Physical Immortality;" and Wednesday on "Paradoxes and their Reconciliation."
In what books are these to be found?
1. Brains can plan improvements, but only good will can initiate them. There is only one way to deal with these problems that is really satisfactory and lasting. Change men, and you thereby change all the problems which arise out
of their defective nature. This is a truth which will be repeated and remembered long after this era is gone. Spiritualize them, and in the atmosphere of goodwill which shall then arise you will solve all problems for good.
2. It is a truism that the real claim of Christian philosophy on our respect does not lie in its exclusiveness but in its Catholicity: in the fact that it finds truth in a hundred different systems, accepts and elucidates Greek, Jewish and Indian thought, fuses them in a coherent theology, and says to speculative thinkers of every time and place, "Whom therefore ye ignorantly worship, Him declare I unto you."
3. Our universe is neither the first nor the last of its kind, their number is infinite. And when the consummation of our present universe is perfected there will be "Another Word on the Tongue of the Ineffable," as the Gnosis has it, for the Ineffable speaks infinitely, or, as our Brahman brethren say, there are "crores of crores of Brahmas," or universes.
4. Compacted of desires, a prisoner of Fate, in the intimate and dreary companionship of his personal self-consciousness, - man feeds upon the dry husks of Life, finding no abiding home, no haven of rest in the Nature through which he wanders, alien to it as to himself. But when the Vow of Poverty is taken, all this is changed. The man has transcended his personal self: he has entered a diviner order of being; henceforward the Law of that new order guides and enfolds him.
References to quotations in January Quiz
1. Old Diary Leaves, II. page 150.
2. Complete Prose, Walt Whitman, Democratic Vistas, page 226.
3. Aradia, by C.G. Leland, page 89.
4. The Drama of Love and Death, by Edward Carpenter, page 78.
5. Raja Yoga, by Swami Vivekananda, page 64.