Divine Wisdom Brotherhood Occult Science
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VOL. XXIII., No. 12 Hamilton, February 15th, 1943 Price 20 Cents
ONE SECONDLESS PRINCIPLE
It is no explanation to say, as Eliphas Levi does, that God, the universal Love, having caused the male unit to dig an abyss in the female Binary, or chaos, produced thereby the world. Besides being as gross a conception as any, it does not remove the difficulty of conceiving it without losing one's veneration for the rather too human-life ways of the Deity. It is to avoid such anthropomorphic conceptions that the Initiates never use the epithet "God" to designate the One and Secondless Principle in the Universe; and that - faithful in this to the oldest traditions of the Secret Doctrine the world over - they deny that such imperfect and often not very clean work could ever be produced by Absolute Perfection. There is no need to mention here other still greater metaphysical difficulties. Between speculative Atheism and idiotic anthropomorphism there must be a philosophical mean, and a reconciliation. The Presence of the Unseen Principle throughout all nature, and the highest manifestation of it on Earth - MAN, can alone help to solve the Problem, which is that of the mathematician whose x must ever elude the grasp of our terrestrial algebra. The Hindus have tried to solve it by their avatars, the Christians think they did it - by their one divine Incarnation. Exoterically - both are wrong; esoterically both of them are very near the truth. Alone, among the Apostles of the Western religion, Paul seems to have fathomed - if not actually revealed - the archaic mystery of the Cross. As for the rest of those who, by unifying and individualizing the Universal Presence, have thus synthesized it into one symbol - the central point in the Crucifix - they have shown thereby that they have never seized the true Spirit of the teaching of Christ, and by their interpretations they have degraded it in more than one way. They have forgotten the Spirit of that universal symbol and have selfishly monopolized it - as though the Boundless and the Infinite can ever be limited and conditioned to one manifestation individualized in one man, or even in a nation! - The Secret Doctrine, by H.P. Blavatsky, Il. 555-6, first edition, IV. 125-6, Adyar edition.
Food For Occultists
Nothing keeps the moral sense as numb as intoxicating drinks and drugs. This is the reason for their being prohibited in Occultism. They are Destruction's most faithful servants - the dope of the Dugpas. Carnivorous self-destruction is a slow but sure suicide. Meat strengthens in Samsara all that is illusory and weakens all that is real and helpful. Superior Man looks upon the cow and the elephant as types of perfection, upon the lion as the type of pride and upon the tiger as the type of anger. In Hinduism, as you know, the god of learning has the head of an elephant, but the body of a man.
Material food is only for the material body, the vehicle and instrument, in which myriads of younger Lives are trained. Spiritual food (all of that which assists the Spiritual individual to train itself by training those Lives) is Teaching that leads to Action. Teaching that leads to no Action is like material food put before you but which you do not eat.
If by certain material food some tendency of the body is unduly strengthened and excited at wrong seasons, such food must be known to further such tendency and henceforth be avoided. Many nations have had, and some still have, laws against eating certain food. The Egyptians had it, the Jews and the Hindus still have. At taking Pansil, Buddhists are still told to eliminate meat eating. At entering the lowest grade of the T.S., in the first fourteen years of its existence, every member took Pansil and was offered the rules. The majority of the members paid little attention to the rules, for they had joined out of curiosity, hoping to discover some new magic trick. But the few, who wanted to discover new methods of helping others, added vegetarianism to their way of life. They began to see and to do.
Most kinds of meat are helpful to physical man, but none of them to spiritual man. Meat of pigs and of cattle strengthens the procreative and fighting qualities of man, and for a young householder and a warrior it should not be forbidden. Among the Hindus, the Kshattriyas, the ruling class and the warriors, are up to this day and for easily understood reasons, not forbidden to eat meat, nor forbidden to kill evildoers and enemies.
To understand material food better, it will be helpful to know what kind of Elementals build up different kinds of food. On the lowest rung work the Earth elementals. They build up pigs and cattle among the quadrupeds, pigeons among the birds, eels and muskellunges among the fishes, also frogs and shellfish. In the vegetable world they build up potatoes, tomatoes, apples, onions, legumes of all kinds - all of which irritate the procreative and fighting glands in the body. Where such irritation is undesirable, such food should be avoided.
The Water elementals build up reindeer, elks and the deer family in general; cabbage, beets and radishes among the vegetables; barley, corn and oats among cereals; plums, pears, peaches, blueberries, huckleberries and cloudberries among fruits and berries; water cattle and water fowls among animals. (The water cattle in China, India and South Africa are built up by the Undines. )
The air elementals, called Sylphs in the West, build up mountain sheep and capricorns among quadrupeds, most of the birds except the pigeons and the carnivorous. The singing birds belong here, all of them. Among the cereals wheat and rice are built up by the Sylphs; and so are the strawberries, nearest to the divine Ambrosia for mortals.
Salamanders, the Fire elementals, build vegetables and berries with sharp and bitter taste. In the animal kingdom they produce carnivorous quadrupeds and birds. You do not eat any of these, as long as you do not desire Self-destruction, which after all, means only destruction of the body.
What the Masters call "Fruit" is the pulp of apples, pears, plums, peaches, etc. That excludes seeds and stones.
The best of grains, and the food made of them, are rice, wheat, barley and oats. The pods of legumes are nourishing and do no harm. Peas and beans are not "fruit" and have been shunned by Occult students as aphrodisiacs, hence disturbing and dragging down into matter. Some seeds act the same way, but are not used for food. Tomatoes, berries and melons are valuable food and should be eaten. Berries are not counted as fruit in the stores, but what else are they? Vegetables are not taboo, but of less importance than fruit. They are excellent for Herbivora, less so for human beings. Some of them, especially cabbage, help to produce fermentation and they assist evacuation. Milk is essential for children as it contains all the elements that produce healthy blood. Cream, cheese and butter, also other milk products give the grown-ups all that they need for the same purpose. Some cakes are nothing but bread, with sugar and condiments added, but being harder to digest than bread, they are better left alone.
It is optional for an Occultist, who warts to use his Third Eye and occasionally his etheric vehicles and who does not want to fight Kama repeatedly, to give up as much of the meat eating that he can. But it is obligatory during periods of intense training. The One Life requires that the myriads of lower Lives become passive and quiet. To be awake in Samadhi - which is no real sleep - is possible only when the imaginary self is asleep. Then "His Will is done," for the desires are quenched.
In the early days of the T.S. an accepted Fellow received with his diploma, a slip of paper on which was set forth some rules for his guidance to be lived up to by a member aspiring to discipleship. The paper was headed
The Course as a Beginner
To prescribe definitely your course as a beginner:
(1) a. Drink not intoxicating liquors, take not intoxicating drugs. b. Eat no meat. Destroy not any life.
(2) Refrain from unlawful sexual intercourse, if you cannot lead a life of Celibacy.
(3) a. Scrupulously avoid any kind of untruth. b. Take not that which is not given - i.e., avoid wrongful gain.
(4) Cease to long for money, position, sensual pleasures and the transitory objects of this brief earthly existence.
(5) Free yourself from the thraldom of passions. Endeavor to overcome anger and pride.
(6) Cherish not hatred or malice towards anybody. Gently advise those who are neglectful of their duties. Do away with your religious prejudices, if they prevent you from feeling a kind tolerance for the beliefs of others.
(7) Try your best to improve the moral and spiritual conditions of others. Love humanity with all your heart.
N.B.: Remember all earthly desires are the cause of sorrow. "Trishna" is the cause of all evil.
This Course is still the most effective way to prepare for Discipleship.
Causes and Effects
Within Samsara, immense changes can be brought about by Magic - strong, consistent cooperation under Will - for destruction or for construction. Whole continents are affected when millions cooperate in Will, in Thought and in Action. Single-minded and purposive cooperation for destruction is
karmic punishment. Single-minded and purposive cooperation for construction is karmic blessing. Karma-Nemesis, Eternal Justice, rules. Men are blind, Karma sees. Cause brings Effect always and everywhere. In Samsara, where Time and Space, the cooperating team, act as One, there are cycles, times and seasons for everything, some large and some small. Time for growth, for ripening of karmic as well as every other kind of fruit.
Even in the Mahabharata period a mixture of castes had started, and the teachers, the Brahmanas, wanted to usurp the position of rulers, as the merchants and the industrialists of Europe tried until they became successful in England, Holland and Italy about 400 years ago. As the Brahmanas substituted the Head Doctrine for the Heart Doctrine, so the Western merchants and industrialists made money the measure of everything, with the Solar plexus their highest chakra. Since that time the question "What does it cost?" has taken the place of the ancient and honorable inquiry: "What is here the right thing to do?"
Many things appear chaotic at present (Dec. 1939) because apparent usefulness and nothing else is considered duty and because Effect is separated from Duty in the mind of the multitude, which sees the awful Effect without being aware of the no less awful Cause. In times of calamity it is too often forgotten that there are no Effects whatever without their Causes.
We have Sudra races today, with rulers belonging to Killer tribes and a sprinkling of small Kshattriya nations, but most people of our time belong to the Vaishya caste who think of how important to the trade it is to promise much and shun to fulfill the promises unless compulsory. Under the Head Doctrine, the excuses for unfulfilled promises are legion and are easily found and eagerly used by everybody. Thus Vaishyas become robbers by evasions and lies. The standing excuse of merchant nations is: "I cannot do it. It is impossible, for it costs too much".
Individuals have become paupers by not doing what they could and by not fulfilling their promises. Nations will become paupers the same way and become small and feeble. By unhesitatingly doing their duty, though the difficulties appear unsurmountable, men and nations will succeed and prosper.
One whose faith is in the Heart Doctrine does not, like a Shylock, count the costs of fulfilling his promises. He counts out his money and pays it to his creditor. He does not steal it by offering excuses. He will succeed miraculously when the niggardly Vaishya fails and fails until becoming bankrupt. Look around you and see what is happening before your own eyes.
Does it always cost too much to do your duty and to help individuals and nations, O Vaishyas?
Scoundrels reason this way: "Those who are in need have done something wrong and are punished for it. We must not interfere with Justice, we must not try to cure the sick, nor give to the poor, nor assist those who are attacked." When the scoundrels themselves become sick, poor and attacked, they no longer reason that way. The Doctrine of the Heart proclaims: "Become a Helper like the good Samaritan; do not press by the helpless without giving help. Become a true Brother, a Helper and brighten the dark world."
It is to remember that Upasika predicted for the near future such a period of lawlessness which she called a Terreur, adding also that some of her contemporaries still remaining alive at that awful time might recognize One of the Brotherhood who had once more stepped out to help, as He had done at the French revolution, at which time He
had taken the name of Comte de St. Germain.
The Destructive is raging; still the Constructive and Cooperative will construct and cooperate. The awful Darkness and Destruction just now will become the background against which Glorious Light and Joyful Construction will shine and give our sorrow-stricken contemporaries new hope.
END OF THIS SERIES.
Received through personal instruction during his lifetime from Dr. Jacob Bonggren, pupil of H.P.B. and a Chela.
January 15, 1943.
"MY REDEEMER LIVETH"
By N.W.J. Haydon
The Christian Church celebrates in its festival of Easter, one of the great mysteries of human evolution, and I now present some thoughts on this subject for consideration. Even though they appear radically opposed to the interpretation of this festival, now used by the Church, I hope you will admit that they were worth attention and that my conclusions are helpful in meeting our life's problems in matters of religion.
While familiar, doubtless, with the Church's teachings about Easter, I must begin with them to make the rest follow in due order; since most of us have a Christian background for our early life and training, it is advisable to start with them, in order to proceed from the known to the unknown, especially if we wish to interest other enquirers. Our mutual experiences will then form the best basis for a new outlook.
The portion of these teachings now to be analyzed, are summed up very simply, but explicitly, in what is known as "The Apostles' Creed", in these words, which are repeated by hundreds of congregations every Sunday morning, throughout the year: - "I believe in the resurrection of the body and the life everlasting". If my own experience has any value as a guide, it is a fair statement that because we were taught to repeat these words, long before we were old enough to understand them, or even to ask for an explanation, we came to accept them as essential for our welfare, especially as any enquiry into their meaning was discouraged as being dangerous to some mysterious thing known as "salvation". It was another case of
Ours not to reason why
Ours but to (believe) and die.
Which saves a lot of headaches. What little evidence was given us, and this also was to be accepted without question, is found in St. Paul's "First Epistle to the Corinthians", chapter 15, of which I will read only verses six to eight, although the whole chapter is concerned with this problem. "And first He was seen of Cephas (another name for Peter) and then of the twelve; after that He was seen of above five hundred brethren at once, of whom the greater part remain unto this present, but some are fallen asleep. After that, He was seen of James, then of all the apostles. And, last of all, He was seen of me also, as of one born out of due time". The implication of these verses, and what the writer does not tell us by way of confirmation, all help to show how far the Church has wandered afield in its credulity and materialism, from Paul's teachings of this mystery, or mystical experience.
Most Ancient Book
Linked in memory to the phrase in the Apostles' Creed is that beautiful Aria in Handel's "Messiah", which begins "I know that my Redeemer liveth". But, contrary to popular belief, 'these words are not quoted from the Gospels, nor even from the New Testament, but from the 19th chapter
of The Book of Job, which is held, by many scholars, to be older than any others included in The Old Testament. These verses most certainly do not support the Church's teaching of a physical resurrection. Such use wrenches them violently from their context - a fault that often appears in dogmatic religion. A similar misuse of a familiar verse is often seen in obituary notices, where their writers express a pious hope for a future reunion with this quotation: "Till the day breaks and the shadows flee away". These words are taken from "The Song of Solomon", chapter two, verse 17, and they reflect only the complaint of a lover at being parted from his beloved, and nothing else whatsoever!
Now, as bearing on the quotation from the words spoken by Job in his great distress and sufferings, let me present the opinion of a great English scholar, Prof. J.A. Froude, M.A., who, in his "Short Studies on Great Subjects" tells us: "This Book of Job is the most difficult of all the Hebrew compositions - many words occurring in it, and many thoughts, not to be found elsewhere in the Bible. How difficult our translators found it may be seen by the number of words which they were obliged to insert in italics, and the doubtful renderings which they have suggested in the marginal columns. One instance of this in passing - it will be familiar to every one - is the passage quoted at the opening of the English Burial Service, and adduced as one of the doctrinal proofs of the resurrection of the body: "I know that my Redeemer liveth and that he shall stand at the latter day upon the earth, and though after my skin worms destroy this body, yet in my flesh I shall see God."
Day, Though, Worms, Body
"These four words, day, though, worms, body, in italics have nothing answering to them in the original; they were added by the translators (or rather by St. Jerome, whom our translators have followed) to fill in their interpretation (of what they thought the original writer intended). For the words "in my flesh" they tell us themselves in the margin that we may read (and in fact we ought to read) "out of, or without my flesh". It is but to write out these verses, omitting the conjectural additions and making that one small but vital correction, to see how frail a support is there for so large a conclusion. If there is any doctrine of a resurrection here, it is precisely Not of the body, but of the Spirit. And now let us only add that the word translated "Redeemer" is the technical expression for the "Avenger of blood"; and that the second verse ought to be rendered - "and one to come after me, implying (my next of kin, to whom avenging my injuries belongs) shall stand upon my dust", and we can then see how much was to be done towards the exegesis of the text. (I)
In passing, let me add that St. Jerome lived in the 4th century, and must have been an important person since he was baptized when a young man by the Pope himself. He first translated the Hebrew Scriptures into Latin thus giving us "The Vulgate", which is the form still used by The Roman Catholic Church, as its Bible of today. In justice, however, to any faults in his translation from the Hebrew, it should be remembered that the literary knowledge of this language in his time cannot be compared with that of even the translators of the King James version. The Massoretic vowel points were not invented and systematized until a period between the sixth and ninth centuries of our era, and Jerome died early in the fourth.
These statements of Prof. Froude are rather devastating to anyone who, like myself, was brought up to accept
the Church's interpretation so, by way of further inquiry, I went to the library of Trinity College and made use of their copy of The Triglot Bible, so called because it contains the original renderings in Hebrew, Greek, and Latin, in parallel columns for comparison as accurately as possible, and made copies of the verses in question. There was also available a work entitled "A New Translation" issued by The Jewish Publications Society, at Philadelphia, in 1917. Yet a third rendering bears a name which will be known to you, namely "The Septuagint" so called because it was the work of seventy-two learned Jews, who translated the Hebrew scriptures into Greek for the benefit of the great library at Alexandria, which was set up by King Ptolemy Soter in the third century, B.C.; or so we are told by Josephus.
Before offering you the consensus of these, and other translations, let me remind you of the claim by scholars as to the antiquity of the Book of Job, as witness the details of its composition. All these point to patriarchial times, long before the Israelites became a distinct nation. (II)
Changes in Language
Its probable date is set at 3,000 B.C., so Job might well have been a contemporary of Abraham. Keeping this in mind, one cannot be surprised at the difficulties of translators as set forth by Prof. Froude, our own English language is not recognizable in the various languages spoken in England even 1,000 years ago, so how many words would become lost in the mists of time, how many changes of grammar would have been made, during so great an interval as 3,000 years. These various sources are summed up for us ill the commentary of the famous German Jewish scholar Delitsch, who says - "The word Redeemer means an Avenger of blood, or a Vindicator of honor; one whose duty it is, whether by family ties or close friendship, to take final and decisive action against Job's accusers. Over his grave he will stand, when the time comes, and refute their false witness. Then the words "After my skin" is destroyed, (whether by his disease, or by natural decay in the grave,) then outside of my flesh "shall I see God" means that in some future life Job hoped to be again restored to the presence of his God". The Rev. Canon Cook, of Exeter, also comments that Job did not expect his vindication before his death, but he was quite sure that his own individual consciousness would continue after death, whether he had a body or not. Clearly then, there is no suggestion of a physical resurrection, as the Church teaches today, but only that of a continuing consciousness with all its individual characteristics, on which to build a sure and certain hope of an unbroken life crowned by restoration to the divine presence.
The Apostle's Creed
Let us return now for some consideration of my first references to that famous and ancient document "The Apostles' Creed", for you are all aware that, for the Church of today, the sole reason for Easter is its teaching of a physical resurrection, as based on its interpretation of the story in the Gospels and in the "Acts of the Apostles". It is advisable to remember that, for ages before the Church came into being, a similar festival was almost a worldwide custom for people living north of the Equator, to mark the return of Spring and the renewed fertility of the Earth. With this mass of ancient custom to build on, it was to be expected that the shrewd leaders of the early Church, as soon as it had become organized under its "Bishop at Jerusalem", which was the earliest title of the Pope, would absorb it into its own system and add its virtues and miracles unto those assembled around the personality of Jesus, so as to make him
more attractive to their converts. But one colossal inconsistency seems to have never been hinted at, or else carefully obscured behind a belief in miracles, as witness a sentence in the writings of St. Augustine, which I will quote presently. The return of Spring is marked by the growth of new bodies, but the Easter of the Church and its creed is based on the return of a once dead body, mutilated in the first instance by crucifixion, and for the rest of humanity, by all sorts of accidents and diseases.
Book of the Dead
We are frequently referred to the Egyptian "Book of the Dead" as proof of the antiquity of this belief that, although Chapter 154 is concerned with the prevention of the body from decay in the tomb, its reanimation is quite another matter. Dr. Wallis Budge gives us the following translation of one prayer: "Hail to Thee, O my Father Osiris, I have come and I have embalmed this my flesh so that my body may not decay . . . Grant Thou to me to endure for ever . . . I shall possess my flesh for ever and ever; I shall not decay; I shall not wither away; I shall not become corruption." He tells us, too, that the Egyptians believed their bodies did not remain quiescent in their tombs, but that the prayers and ceremonies of the day of burial endowed it with the power of becoming gradually a "Sahu", or perfected spiritual body, with revived powers of activity in their heaven-world. Thus we find phrases such as "I flourish, or germinate, like the plants . . . my body flourisheth without defect, like unto RA for ever and ever". At the end of the prayers comes this striking phrase "Deliver me from corruption as thou didst Thyself by Thine own power", for which you may remember a parallel passage in the Gospel of John (x, 17-18) "I lay down my life that I might take it again. I have power to lay it down and I have power to take it again".
The Christian Fathers
Turning now to other writings of the first few centuries of the Christian era I found in our Public Library a set of 15 volumes of those "Christian Fathers" whose activities date prior to Council of Nicea, held in A.D. 325. At this gathering was formulated the famous Nicene Creed, said to be the only one of the three creeds in general use by Christian Churches which received oecumenical support. This word "oecumenical" is used by theologians as a technical term meaning the whole Church in concerted action; an event sufficiently unusual to deserve a special name for its sole use!
Of all these Ante-Nicene Fathers there were only two, according to the index of these volumes, whose known writings contain any references to the Resurrection; these were Justin Martyr and Athenagoras, both of whom were active in the first half of the second century. The first was a Roman, who lived in Palestine, the second was a Greek. Of the latter's work only a few fragments have been preserved; he argues that any denial of a physical Resurrection is a denial of the infinite powers of the Creator and therefore blasphemous. Also that Resurrection is necessary to the happiness of the soul and that denial of it means placing humanity on a level with the beasts that perish. Well: to support any teaching by the claim that to deny it is to insult Deity, may have weight with people too timid to use their minds outside the limits of domestic problems, and so prefer credulity to reason, but it is bound to fail them eventually and to cause great distress, as the history of religion has shown over and over again.
Justin Martyr's View
Justin Martyr, whose name is much better known to students, puts up a very lengthy argument, in the course of
which he quotes from the Gospel of Luke and from The Acts of the Apostles (1, 9). (The latter quotation was discussed by Mr. A.P. Sinnett in "Merits of Occult Teaching"). Of the former, one can only wonder how Justin Martyr could find any support in it. The verses are found in the 24th chapter, better known as "The Journey to Emmaus", and give us the story of the risen Saviour walking with two disciples and explaining the necessity for his death. Two verses, in particular, either make the Church's theory foolish, or support it completely - according to your point of view. These are the 16th which states that the disciples' "eyes were holden that they should not know him," that is they were unable to recognize the man whom they had accompanied for so long before his recent death. The other is the 31st which concludes the episode by saying that when they had sat down to supper and Jesus had blessed the food, "their eyes were opened and they knew him, and he vanished out of their sight." Now, I ask you, what sort of a mind can accept the idea of a physical resurrectoin on such evidence as that? It is interesting to note, here, that Jesus is said to have had this power over his body even before his death, for we read in John's Gospel (viii. 59) that in one of his arguments with the Jews "they took up stones to cast at him; but Jesus hid himself and went out of the temple, going through the midst of them, and so passed by". The version of this story given by Luke (iv. 30) differs by stating that the Jews "rose up and thrust him out of the city and led him unto the brow of the hill whereon the city was built, that they might cast him down headlong. But he, "passing through the midst of them, went his way". There is also the story of his walking on the Sea of Galilee. It seems to me that this problem requires us to define our terms again and to use commonly accepted meanings with greater limitations, if we are to accept the New Testament as at all reliable in the Authorized Version.
Disciples were Terrified
Just what should be implied here by the word "physical"? In Luke's gospel (24:39) we are told that, after their return from Emmaus, the two disciples were telling their story to a group of others in a room with closed doors when suddenly "Jesus stood in the midst of them, and said "Peace be unto you'. But they were terrified, thinking they saw a spirit. But he said 'Why are ye troubled . . . behold my hands and my feet, that it is I myself; handle me and see; for a spirit hath not flesh and bones as ye see me have'. Then, as they still doubted he asked for food and ate it before them.
Certainly this sounds conclusive, but let me remind you that visits from the Masters are chronicled by Madame Blavatsky and by Colonel Olcott; the latter speaks of his doubt that he indeed saw the body of his revered guru and asked for some tangible evidence of his physical reality to keep after his visitor had gone. So the latter took off his scarf and left it with the Colonel who kept it long afterwards. This occurred not while the Colonel was at Adyar, or even in India, but while he was in New York, and you will find the details in his book "Theosophy, Religion and Occult Science" (on page 123 of the new edition of 1885).
The famous "Mahatma Letters" are all physical so far as paper and ink go, but they were sent by non-physical methods to their recipients. The records of Spiritualism are full of genuine cases of materializations, which had all the appearance of reality, and the four volumes of Mr. Stead's "Borderland" contain many well attested cases, including the most famous, perhaps, of all such that appearance known as "Katie King". Miss Florence Marryat's notable book "There is no Death", con-
tains many similar cases, worked under test conditions.
But all these - so far as they refer to apparent re-embodiments of persons who once lived amongst us, and not reanimations of dead bodies, are not living "physical" bodies as ours are at this moment, nor were those of the Masters whose visits Mme. Blavatsky and Colonel Olcott held in so much honor. They had made a covering that looked like human flesh, that was warm to the touch, that contained organs of speech, sight, hearing and locomotion, but that was all. They could pass through space, over long distances, in a moment of our time. They were independent of our laws of weight, temperature and mass, they could pass through obstacles solid to our senses, against which we would be powerless to move. If we hope to form a satisfactory understanding of these beliefs, held so devoutly by many of our Christian fellow citizens, we must limit the word "physical" strictly to terms of our normal, human senses, and consider that these other appearances are super-physical or super-human, though by no means "supernatural". We shall at least be scientific in such a method and remain free to add to our knowledge as our growth, experience and research permit.
Paul of Tarsus
There remains one strong supporter of this Christian belief, whom I have not yet quoted, and who lived during the balance of the first century immediately following the death of Jesus, this is Paul of Tarsus, whom Mme. Blavatsky names as an "initiate", and the Christian Church as the Great Apostle to the Gentiles. He was a strong protagonist of the Resurrection and the 15th chapter of his First Epistle to the Corinthians, which argues in its favor will be read in hundreds of Christian Churches during the Easter Season. In his famous speech to the Athenians, delivered in their Areopagus, and found in the 17th chapter of The Acts of the Apostles, he claims the fact of Jesus' resurrection as a part and a proof of his mission as a Saviour. But, if you will take the trouble to read these two chapters for yourselves, you will find therein no statement whatever, plain or equivocal, that the bodies of the risen dead are none other than those which had been buried, with all their defects and infirmities. So far, indeed, is this from being the teaching of Paul that the second part of his chapter in Corinthians, just mentioned, has been embodied in the burial service of the Church and in it any such idea as a physical resurrection is specifically denied and derided as merely silly. I refer particularly to verses 35 to 44, wherein are found these words "so also is the resurrection of the dead; it (the body) is sown in corruption, it is raised in incorruption; it is sown in dishonor, it is raised in glory, it is sown in weakness, it is raised in power". Could words be plainer? With all this we can find no difficulty and we can accept it as supplementary to the greater teaching of Reincarnation, in which also death plays its most helpful part. See also verse 50.
Forgotten or Ignored
Yet the Christian Church has forgotten, or ignored, these plain statements in its official creeds and in the last 1800 years has gradually forged unyielding fetters of dogma for the minds of its devout adherents, which have borne bitter fruit of struggle against reason and the evidence of nature, followed inevitably by rebellion and separation as they were driven to refuse allegiance to such materialistic and impossible requirements. Let me quote the exact terms of "The Apostles' Creed" which received its final, and present, form
early in the fourth century and is repeated every Sunday all over Christendom as an act of faith, as a test of membership, as the basis of a hope for salvation; led by the minister of the day, the whole congregation is required to rise and repeat after him "I believe in (various clauses followed by the words) "The forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body, and the life everlasting". You can see the dogmatic assertiveness of these words.
Nor among other things should it be forgotten that the doctrine of reincarnation was taught in the Church up till A.D. 553 when the Second Council of Constantinople forbade it as a heresy. See palingenesis, Matthew xix. 25; Titus iii. 5; where the plain Greek word for reincarnation is misleadingly translated by various orthodox translators "restoration," "renovation," "regeneration" and other subterfuges.
I was able to consult in Our Public Library a very complete "History of the Creeds" by Rev. J.R. Lumby, D.D., which containss a tabular statement showing the evolution of the Apostles' Creed and its growth in complexity from the time of Irenaeus to that of Rufinus. There are certain implications in this chronology which are not generally known, to which I will ask your attention. Irenaeus was Bishop of Lyons, in Gaul or, as we call it, France, in the latter part of the second century; he was strong on converting the heathen and wrote one of the earliest books against the heretics so that he must have held very decided opinions on doctrine. In his time this creed appears in its simplest form and contains no reference whatever to any resurrection of the body. That means - for nearly two hundred years the early Christian Church had grown without any formal creed adopted by act of its authorities. It was not until all those, who had been associated in any way with its Founder, had passed off the scene and become
memories based on a few writings, that its new leaders sought to strengthen their position by imposing on their supporters what they thought was a body of necessary dogma, to be accepted without question, at a risk of personal hazard which grew as the Church increased in power, wealth and authority.
The next addition was made by Tertullian, who worked during the last of the second century and the first part of the third. He was a leader amongst the Latin Fathers of his time, and his powers of mind naturally found an outlet in laying down the law for the majority of the Brethren who were less well equipped, intellectually. In his time the phrase "and also the resurrection of the body" first appears. This dictum was not accepted by his successors, however, for the forms adopted in the times of Cyprian and Novatian, who led during the remainder of the third century, contain no reference to it. Then came the Council of Nicea at which the Nicene Creed was born but, at that time the creed finished with the first sentence of the final subdivision, which is "I believe in the Holy Ghost, the Lord and Giver of Life", and so remained for sixty years until the Council of Constantinople in A.D. 381.
Marcellus, who came to the front a few years after the Council of Nicea, revived the dogma of Tertullian, his statement being in Greek instead of Latin.
The Council of Constantinople appears to have been held after the death of Marcellus and it added the final clauses ending with "and I look for the resurrection of the dead and the life of the world to come Amen," which are still in use to this day, and this Nicene Creed, as finished over fifteen hundred years ago, is still repeated every Sunday in the most sacred of the acts of the organized Church, that known as "The Service of the Holy Communion"
wherein each participant is supposed, by an act of faith, to enter the personal presence of its Founder. Adherents of the Roman Church however are taught that they do very much more than this and, by the powers vested in the officiating priest, are enabled to copy the practices of our savage ancestors and indulge in a religious cannibalism, whereby they eat a portion of the body of the sacrificial victim in the Mass. This is known as the teaching of transubstantiation.
The Dead, not The Body
It should be noted here that this Nicene Creed differs frown the Apostles' Creed in that it affirms a belief in the "Resurrection of the dead" not of the body, a very different matter and one which is in line with Paul's teaching to the Corinthians are quoted before (see note (III) ). Differences of opinion still remained amongst the leaders, however, for we find the famous missionary bishop, Augustine, who worked from the fourth to the fifth centuries, stating in a sermon on the creed "do not therefore dread the resurrection of the flesh. Behold its blessings; forget its ills. Whatever bodily complaints now exist, will not be there, where we shall be eternal, equal to the angels of God". This opinion was generally imposed by the Western Church up to the time of Parminius in the eighth century, when what is known as the "ultimate Text" appears, as no changes are found in any later formularies.
There is a footnote at this point by Dr. Lumby who says "the older English translations of the Creed used the literal word 'flesh' for the Latin original 'carnis' and the Greek 'Sarkos' with which words the ancient Church protested against the spiritualistic conceptions of the Gnostics", but it is necessary to remember that this word "spiritualistic" when associated with the Gnostics has an entirely different meaning from that used by our modern bodies so called. With the Gnostics it meant a mystic and personal experience whereby the individual went into a state of trance - or ecstacy - in which he contacted Divinity, whereas our modern spiritualists usually present the sorry spectacle of people accepting advice on all sorts of subjects from sources of extremely doubtful or credulous value to say the least about them, whatever their intentions.
The Athanasian Creed
Now, for a few minutes, let us consider the Athanasian Creed, formulated by the Bishop of Alexandria of that name, who led the Church during the Fourth Century. It is appointed to be read at services on Christmas and Easter and several other occasions and represents the extreme limit of dogmatism, for which reason many of the clergy avoid reading it nowadays. It is concerned chiefly with a very creditable effort to state as clearly as human thought and words permit the mysteries of the Trinity and the physical incarnation of the Christ in the body of Jesus. With all that we can have no quarrel, and I recommend any of you who have never read it to do so; also those of you who have only heard it in Church services, should read it quietly for yoursleves. You will find its clauses seem quite different under such circumstances and will admire the treatment of these difficult hypostases.
As regards the subject now before you it states that God the Son "suffered for our salvation, descended into hell, rose again the third day from the dead. He ascended into heaven . . . from whence he shall come to judge the quick and the dead. At whose coming all men shall rise again with their bodies: and shall give an account for their own works". This last phrase is no new one for it occurs many times in the Egyptian Book of the Dead, and has been preserved to us in the ancient Vedic teaching of Karma. But it concurs
with the Apostles' Creed in insisting on the physical resurrection, the incredible difficulties of which were considered in the arguments of Justin Martyr and dismissed, not by the easy analogies of the seed sown in the ground as used by Paul but by the simple statement that no matter what might have happened to such bodies, the omnipotence of God would suffice to bring them all together again - as in Ezekiel's vision of the "Valley of dry bones".
A Beautiful Illustration
I used the word scientific thinking a while back, and the Creed of Athanasius may be considered a good example of metaphysical science; but even scientific processes fail to meet our needs at times and its analogies prove inadequate. Let me describe a demonstration given in a discussion of this very subject of the resurrection of the body, an account of which was sent me by one of those who took part in it. It arose from a quotation from another Hebrew writer named Baruch, which is "And the dust shall be summoned and there shall be said of it, give back that which is not thine and raise up all that thou hast kept until this time"; the speaker added that he had concluded it was just a pious platitude, a relic of a tradition that had outlived its usefulness, so he had discarded the whole matter as something of no consequence. But, he goes on, I was assaying in my laboratory a sample of gold-bearing quartz.
I will not take up your time with the preliminary details of this interesting work, but come at once to the final processes which are germane to my explanation. The button of gold, consisting of the final metallic extract, which contains two and a half times its gold content in silver, is put between heavy rollers and squeezed into a thin ribbon of metal. This is twisted with the pliers into a spiral, something like a watch-spring, known as a "cornet", and then placed in a glass of nitric acid which dissolves away all the silver, leaving to the sight only a beautiful filigree shape of purest gold. The silver has disappeared, the gold only remains and if the glass were held before an uninformed person they would declare that there was nothing else in the clear liquid before them. The analyst, however, knows that a quantity of silver is hidden in it, must be there as part of the original button.
A Pinch of Salt
The next process, to recover this silver, is to place a pinch of common salt in the acid and, instantly, a change begins for threads of whitish matter appear and a spongy mass is precipitated to the bottom of the glass. This is filtered out of the liquid, heated to melting point and results in a button of pure silver being restored to the assayist from what had previously been a clear fluid. Thus there come into being two buttons, one of pure gold and the other of pure silver from the mass of quartz and they can be reunited if necessary, by remelting.
Then the writer went on - "It flashed into my mind while at Church that this was the very resurrection of the body which I had discarded as a fable. That to paraphrase the words of Baruch, "the nitric acid shall be summoned by the salt and there shall be said `give back the silver, which is not thine, and raise up that which thou hast kept.' "
This is a useful analogy, in part, and scientific; but it is also quite misleading for although the gold, or spirit, was combined with the silver, or soul, both of them had previously embodied in a body of quartz, which had to be dissolved by sheer force of crushing and washing away. What had become of this quartz; by what process could it be reassembled? No, fellow-seekers, there is no resurrection of the ore-body, neither by any normal process of nature, nor the miraculous omnipotence of the Creator, and any unreasoning
faith which depends for its justification on miracles is not fit for those independent minds who refuse to worship what they can not understand, in part at least and, therefore, respect.
The body plays its necessary part; it is the instrument with which we learn the lessons of citizenship, while on our way to the divine consciousness. Our experience with all our bodies, sub-human, human, and super-human is our teacher. I am convinced that the analogies of school life can provide a solution to many of the problems of our growth in consciousness, and that as each lesson is learned, as each life adds its quota to our equipment of faculties, we become gradually free of the need for them. Each body disappears into that great container (Prakriti) from which all bodies are formed, whether physical or non-physical, and the pure gold of consciousness is restored - like Job - to the divine presence.
Our Redeemer Liveth
In conclusion, I offer you in that Resurrection a complete analogy of the processes of the plan of the Great Architect of the Universe; how much better it is than the futile dogma of a physical resurrection, born of human ignorance and leading nowhere but to distress of mind and affliction of civil life by theological tyranny.
Our Redeemer liveth indeed and in truth; he has kept the stars in their orbits for uncounted millions of centuries. A spark of his life dwells in every one of his creatures and without him we would not exist. Theosophy names him variously, according to the planes on which we seek him; for us, here and now, he is our "Higher Self". "By whatever path, O Arjuna, men seek me, by that path do I go to meet him for all parts are mine. In whatever Faith men worship me, it is I alone who inspire him with constancy therein".
(I) Job xix. 25-27: -(King James version). For I know that my Redeemer liveth, and that he shall stand at the latter day upon the earth:
And though after my skin worms destroy this body yet in my flesh shall I see God:
Whom I shall see for myself, and mine eyes shall behold, and not another; though my reins be consumed within me.
Marginal reading for v. 26: - After I shall awake, though this body be destroyed, yet out of my flesh shall I see God.
(II) Job xix. 25-6:
"Triglot Bible" Hebrew, Greek, Latin, in parallel.
(25) wani ihafzi gali hi jahdrwn zl-zfh ikim
(26) wahrd zwhi nktw-zat wtkshwi ahgh aljh
(25) Oida gar oti aennaos estin o ekluein me mellon
(26) epi gees anasteesai to derma mou to anantloun tauta
(25) Scio enim quod Redemptor meus vivit, et in novissimo die de terra surrecturus sum
(26) et rursum circumdebatur pella mea, et in carne mea videbo Deum meum.
"Revised Version" - English
(25) But I know that my Redeemer liveth, and that he shall stand up at the last upon the earth.
(26) And after my skin hath been thus destroyed, yet from my flesh shall I see God.
(27) Whom I shall see for myself, and mine eyes shall behold, and not another. My reins are consumed within me.
"Revised Version" - U.S.A.
(25) But as for me I know that my Redeemer liveth, and at last he shall stand up upon the earth.
(26) And after my skin, even this body, is destroyed, then without my flesh I shall see God.
(27) Whom I, even I, shall see, on my side, and mine eyes shall behold and not
as a stranger. My heart is consumed within me.
Dr. Moffatt's translation
(25) Still I know One to champion me at last, to stand up for me upon the earth.
(26) This body may break up, but even then my life shall have a sight of God; my heart is pining as I yearn
(27) To see him on my side, see him estranged no longer.
"New Translation" of the Jewish Publishing Society, Philadelphia
(25) Va'ani yadati goali hai ve'acharon al afar yakum;
(26) Ve'achar ori nikfu zot umi bsari echezeh Eloah
(25) But as for me I know my Redeemer liveth and at the last on dust he will witness;
(26) And after my skin is destroyed this and without my flesh I shall see God.
(25) For I know that he is eternal who is about to deliver me
(26) and to raise up upon the earth my skin that endures these sufferings; for these things have been accomplished to me of the Lord,
(27) which I am conscious of in myself, which mine eyes have seen, and not another, but all have been fulfilled to me in my bosom.
(III) If you wish to know the actual words of the oldest manuscripts, the Greek original is:
prosdokomen anastasin nekron,
the Latin version of which is: expectamus resurrectionem mortuorum
as distinct from the sentence in the Athanasian Creed resurgere cum carparibus suis.
Mortuorum means of the dead,
Carparibus suis means their bodies.
THE GENERAL EXECUTIVE
A meeting of the local members of the General Executive was held at 52 Isabella Street, Toronto, on Sunday afternoon, January 31, Messrs. Dr. Wilks, D. W. Barr and Wm. A. Griffiths being absent. A statement of Funds was submitted by the Treasurer, and the membership showed a total to date within 14 of last year's total. Should the inactive members be reinstated the roll should considerably exceed that of last year. It was decided that the call for the Annual Election be authorized to appear in the next magazine. A discussion on the possibility of reviving the public activities of the London Lodge was laid over for a report from Mr. Kinman who expects shortly to be in that city. Major Schoonmaker, chairman of the Fraternization Committee, will be asked to report on the prospects for this work. The General Secretary laid before the Executive a copy of The Theosophical Worker for October last, with an article on "The Festivals of Our Lady," from which Mr. Belcher read aloud some passages. The effect was immediate, the members unanimously agreeing that some action be taken. On motion of Lt.-Col. Thomson, D.S.O., seconded by Mr. Kinman, the following motion was adopted: - "That the General Executive of the T.S. in Canada strongly disapproves of the article by the President of the Theosophical Society which appears in `the Theosophical Worker' of October 1942, the article in question making a sectarian appeal which we feel definitely to be contrary to the broad general principles of Theosophy or Divine Wisdom as set forth through the milleniums of religious history." The General Secretary was instructed to forward this resolution to President Arundale. An article on the subject appears elsewhere in the magazine. Mr. Belcher desiring to leave early on account of the serious illness of Mrs. Belcher, the meeting adjourned till April 4.
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: Two Dollars a Year
OFFICERS OF THE T.S. IN CANADA
Wash. E, Wilks, 925 Georgia St. W., Vancouver.
Wash. E. Crafter, 57 Sherwood Avenue, Toronto, Ont.
D.W. Barr, 8 High Park Gardens, Toronto, Ont.
Felix A. Belcher, 250 N. Lisgar St., Toronto, Ont.
Edw. L. Thomson, 24 Crescent Road, Toronto, Ont.
William A. Griffiths, 37 Stayner Street, Weatmount, P.Q. George I, Kinman, 46 Rawlinson Avenue, Toronto, Ont.
Albert E.S. Smythe, 5 Rockwood Place, Hamilton. Ontario, Canada.
Printed by the Griffin & Richmond Printing Co., Ltd., 29 Rebecca Street, Hamilton, Ontario
Members are requested to read the announcement of the Annual Election, to interest themselves in it, and to take an active part in the proceedings.
Sir William Arbuthnot Lane, the noted British surgeon and authority on cancer, has died at the age of 86. He had heterodox views on many subjects as two of his dicta may illustrate: "Women are the cause of all our misery"; "Missionaries are degrading the pagan races."
The International Free World Association has for its principal aims: To begin at once preparation for a world organization: To aid Europe's Underground: To block agents and activities of the Axis in Latin America. Its office is at 55 West 42nd Street, New York City. The Honorary Board consists of Mrs. J. Borden Harriman, chairman, Mayor LaGuardia, Raymond Gram Swing, Harold Iskes, Viscount Cecil, Thomas Mann, Dorothy Thompson, etc.
With this issue of The Canadian Theosophist we close our 23rd volume. If our readers have any suggestions to make regarding features they might like to see included or other improvements we would be glad to hear from them. If at all practicable we would be glad to adopt such suggestions provided they are in the line of our work. Our chief aim is to encourage the study of the original literature of The Theosophical Movement, and to encourage students to write about it and elucidate it by references to current events and the progress and discoveries of science.
As many know, Mr. Oliver J. Schoonmaker of Boston, was elected Chairman for the next Fraternization Convention with power to appoint his Committee. In January a letter was received from him requesting Mr. G.I. Kinman of Toronto to continue acting as Treasurer until such time as the next Convention was held.
Major Schoonmaker, now of Washington, D.C., suggests that possibly due to present world conditions the Committee will be acting as a Holding Committee until such time as the Conventions can be resumed. In the meantime the Committee will have a few items of expense to meet, such as the printing of the Fraternization News from time to time. At the present time there is a balance on hand of $81.61 in Canadian funds which will cover three issues.
Those who feel they would like to further this work are invited to send their contributions, large or small as the case may be, to the Treasurer, G.I. Kinman, 46 Rawlinson Ave., Toronto, Canada.
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. 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 24th so that scrutiny of the ballots may be set for May 29th.
Nomination returns should be sent in a separate letter addressed to the General Secretary at Apt. 14, 5 Rockwood Place, Hamilton, Ontario.
AMONG THE LODGES
Mrs. Nellie Dalzell reports that the resurrected Edmonton Lodge is rather wonderful to her. She knew the old Lodge from the first year after its inception and she says: "I do not remember at any time the enthusiasm for study that possesses our members today: I can only account for it by remembering that in the older lodge we were not encouraged to study H.P.B or the Masters. We had only the Third Volume of The Secret Doctrine, and we were quite frankly told we could not understand it. Today there are at least six copies of the S.D. and possibly more owned personally by the members, and two in the Library. Many members have also bought The Key to Theosophy, The Glossary, and The Ocean of Theosophy." The surprising advances made by the Edmonton Lodge are thus accounted for and other Lodges which lack inspiration would do well to note the difference which is the result of contact with a living literature.
The Annual meeting of the Montreal Lodge was held on January 13. The following are the new Executive for the coming year: Hon. President, Miss C. Burroughs; President, Mr. D. B. Thomas; Vice-President, Mr. Cedric Weaver; Secretary, Mrs. A. Ovenden, 3817 Girouard Avenue, Notre Dame de Grace; Treasurer, Mr. W. A. Griffiths; Assistant Treasurer, Mrs. W. A. Griffiths; Librarian, Mrs. Wm. Matthews.
Mr. G. Rupert Lesch of Erie, Pa., was guest of honor at a Five-o'clock Supper Party held in the social rooms of the Toronto Theosophical Society at 52 Isabella St., on Sunday afternoon, January 24th. In the evening Mr. Lesch gave the first in a series of addresses entitled "Appearance and Reality", which drew a large audience. During the week informal meetings were held, and many questions submitted by those present were dealt with in a clear and informative manner by Mr. Lesch. The final lecture in the series, on Sunday evening, January 31st, was also very well attended, at which time Mr. Lesch spoke on the topic "Going Home." At the Supper Party more than eighty members and friends, were present and were received by Mrs. R. Somers, Mrs. D.W. Barr, and Miss Mary Stuart, convener of the event. Mrs. E.B. Dustan and Mrs. T.S. Hubbard, the refreshment conveners, were assisted during the supper hour by Mrs. G.I. Kinman, Mrs.
R. Illingworth, Mrs. E.J. Norman, Mrs. M. Jardine, Mrs. L.C. Feldstein, Mrs. Roy Emsley, and the Misses K.M. Lazier, Donnia Bax, Adele Selznick, Sheila Gough, Ivy Mae Gough, Mavis Curley and Mary Dustan.
On Saturday afternoon, February 20th, from three to six p.m. the Social Activity Committee of Toronto Theosophical Society will hold a Valentine Tea and Book Sale at the Hall, with Mrs. Dudley W. Barr as convener. Miss Mary Stuart, the Librarian, will be in charge of the Book Sale and will have a number of interesting books on a wide variety of subjects for sale. Fortune-telling will be looked after by Mrs. G.I. Kinman and the Home-Cooking by Mrs. H.J. Cable. The admission to the Valentine Tea will be thirty-five cents which includes afternoon tea and an opportunity to win a "lucky door prize." Toronto Lodge hopes all its members and friends will drop in during the afternoon of Saturday, February 20th, and support this activity - all proceeds of which are for the general work of Toronto Lodge.
We have received U.L.T. of Theosophists, London Bulletin clxx, for December; The Indian Theosophist, October; The Bombay Theosophical Bulletin, October; The Theosophical Movement, Bombay, October; National Money News, January; The Theosophical Worker, Adyar, October; The Theosophical Forum, Covina, February; Buddhism in England, January-February; The Path, Sydney, Australia, October-December; The American Theosophist, January; Theosophy, January; Theosophy in Australia, December-January; The Christian Theosophist, December-March; Bulletin of the T.S. in Mexico, Sept.-October; Toronto Theosophical News, January; The Theosophist, October; Lucifer, January.
WORSHIP OF THE "VIRGIN MARY"
Dr. Arundale is becoming more and more bold in his repudiation of Theosophy and in his abandonment of the pretence with which he entered on the presidency of The Theosophical Society when he pledged himself not to obtrude his episcopal assumptions nor the doctrines he had espoused with them, upon the organization he had set out to demoralize. None but the most wilfully blind can any longer doubt what his object is when they have read the sermon which opens the October issue of The Theosophical Worker, for which "The Liberal Catholic Lurker" would more accurately describe it.
We have not space to quote the more than two pages of this discourse, but a paragraph or two will suffice to show what Dr. Arundale's objects really are and how treacherously he is following the examples of the Quislings, the Lavals and other traitors in these Mayavic times in betraying the trust the deluded members of the Society have placed in his charge. His sermon is headed "The Festivals of our Lady" and here is the first page of The Theosophical Lurker:
"Brethren: I very much regret that we can only have a very small celebration of the Assumption of Our Lady, one of the most important Festivals, not only for the Christian Faith, but for the whole world. I am afraid that in the Protestant Faiths there is not that active reverence for Our Lady that there should be. In the Roman Catholic Church it is much more manifest. And in the Liberal Catholic Church, where we are endeavoring to contact the realities of religion, the place of Our Lady and the various associations with Her are very exalted.
"Today, August 15, we celebrate the Assumption - that is to say, Her Ascension into Heaven to become Queen of the
Angels, just as the Annunciation celebrates Her bringing into incarnation of the great Teacher known as Jesus, through whom we believe the Christ Himself, the World Teacher, manifested and lived a life on earth for a period of three years. It is curious that the Gospel allotted to the Assumption is the same as that allotted to the Annunciation. It is set forth in the first chapter of the Gospel according to S. Luke, beginning at the twenty-sixth verse."
If Dr. Arundale were a competent and bona fide student of comparative religion which he is not, as the president of the Theosophical Society is supposed to be, he would have quoted Matthew xii. 46-50, or Mark iii. 31-35. Here is the passage from Matthew:
"While he yet talked to the people, behold, his mother and his brethren stood without, desiring to speak with him. Then one said unto him, Behold, thy mother and thy brethren stand without desiring to speak with thee. But he answered and said unto him that told him, Who is my mother and who are my brethren? And he stretched forth his hand toward his disciples, and said, Behold my mother and my brethren. For whosoever shall do the will of my Father which is in heaven, the same is my brother, and sister, and mother."
Dr. Arundale alleges that his worship of "Our Lady" is Theosophical, but the Society as such is without creed or dogma, and the intention of the founders was far from anything like what Dr. Arundale would impose upon its members at present. It was not till Mr. Leadbeater, after declaring that he would destroy the Society that demanded his resignation after an investigation into his conduct, began his campaign of alleged clairvoyance and relations with the Masters of Wisdom, introducing ancient forms of idolatry and personality worship, that it became possible for his disciples or his dupes to flood the Society with bogus messages, alleged occult teachings, and fantastic interpretations of religious symbolism.
We commend to the attention of students interested in these matters the article by Madame Blavatsky on "Star-Angel-Worship in the Roman Catholic Church," reprinted by Adyar in September, 1917, from Lucifer, vol. ii., before the authorities there had utterly surrendered their common sense to Mr. Leadbeater. Some sentences from this article will indicate how far Dr. Arundale has strayed from the standards he learned from his foster parent, Miss Arundale, and of the original traditions of the Society which he betrays, for he must know very well, as every student does, that the name Mary denotes Mare, the Sea, the "Waters" or "the Great Deep," "The Primordial Waters of Space or Chaos, and also means Mother, Amba, meaning Aditi and Akasha, the Celestial Virgin-Mother of the visible Universe." But Dr. Arundale would flim-flam his followers into believing that this noble personification should be degraded into the hypothetical mother of Jesus, changed by the Roman church into "a regular goddess."
This, and Dr. Arundale's superstitious acceptance of it, is very different from what Mary herself is recorded to have sung in the Magnificat, familiar to all church-goers. "My soul doth magnify the Lord, and my spirit hath rejoiced in God my Saviour." Dr. Arundale would have her rejoice in Jesus Christ her Saviour, and the rest of us in the Queen of Heaven. His acceptance of Roman Catholic doctrine disqualifies him as an exponent of Theosophy.
Should Dr. Arundale or his friends wish for any further information or facts on the subject of the Virgin Mary it is easy to look up the index of Isis Unveiled and discover what Dr. Arundale so prudently conceals from his followers. I am old enough to remember when Pope Pius IX created the
dogma by which Mary is now recognized as a perpetual Virgin. Perhaps as Dr. Arundale is only 60 he may not have caught up with history yet.
Our Roman Catholic brethren who have repudiated The Liberal Catholic Church, its Orders and its Bishops and Clergy, are not involved in the foregoing. They do not pretend to be Roman Catholics and teach Theosophy under cover. They are frank and open in asserting their beliefs and we can always tell where to find them. They do not profess one creed and follow another. Nor has the Theosophical Society any creed to follow but that of Brotherhood. But when the President undertakes to exalt the fabricated figure of the Virgin Mary to be Queen of Heaven and lectures the "Protestant faiths" for not doing her sufficient reverence, it is about time that the members registered a protest.
Editor, The Canadian Theosophist: - Garbled quotations are often misleading. You did not finish the paragraph you started to quote in the January Canadian Theosophist. The full quotation is as follows:
"It is not a small thing to tear down that which another, and greater, has painfully built with blood and sweat and tears. WE DO NOT BELIEVE THAT HE WILL BE HELD GUILTLESS WHO, FOR SHEER DELIGHT IN DESTROYING, HUNTS THROUGH THE WORKS OF THE HONORED DEAD FOR SOME ALLEGED MISTAKE OR CONFLICT OR SEEMING CONTRADICTION ON WHICH HE MAY PLACE A DESECRATING FINGER." (I have capitalized the part you omitted.)
You state "If ANCIENT WISDOM applied these observations to those who busy themselves tearing down all the ideals that Madame Blavatsky so laboriously built up, it would be more con-sistent."
If you refer to Besant and Leadbeater - and I presume you do - kindly inform me in which of their books or other publications they hunt through the works of H.P.B. for some alleged mistake or conflict or seeming contradiction.
I know of Besant and Leadbeater critics who have done this constantly I do not know of Besant and Leadbeater ever having done this to Blavatsky. But I can cite countless passages in their books of reverence, respect and, admiration for Blavatsky whom both acknowledged as their inspiration.
I am not interested in conclusions you may draw from anything other than what accords with the latter part of my quotation, which you appear to have purposely omitted. If you cannot cite the quotations I have called for (and you cannot) don't you think your own quotation might be applicable a little nearer home?
Chas. E. Luntz.
St. Louis, Mo., January 30.
Mr. Luntz is quite astray in thinking there was any motive beyond saving space in quoting his paragraph. We do not need to go poking around through the works of "the honored dead" as he designates them. The whole works are fictitious, no more reliable than Spalding's "Teachings of the Masters of India" and other works of the kind. The "Lives of Alcyone" were withdrawn from sale at first because the scheming of its notorious author was laid before Mrs. Besant and the volumes lay in seclusion till the hue and cry died down, when financial wisdom prevailed and "the faithful" were induced to buy out the edition. Ernest Wood's book does not seek out passages; it shows that the whole book is a fraud. "Man: Whence, How and Whither" is just such another Arabian Night's Entertainment, and if Mr. Luntz does not know this it is be-
cause he is not so much "from Missouri" as some of the rest of his brethren. What we object to is that this bogus literature is used to bury the Blavatsky books and the Mahatma Letters under mountain heaps of this worthless trash, a fine sample of which is to be found in "The Theosophical Worker" to which we pay attention elsewhere in our pages. It is true that Adyar reprinted The Secret Doctrine recently, but that is because an enthusiastic Blavatskyite put up the money to do it, and it was too good a business proposition to turn down. Does Mr. Luntz undertake to say that The Secret Doctrine is given a favored place in libraries and class work before the Leadbeater stuff? He pleads that his friends do not spend time looking for alleged mistakes or contradictions in the original T.S. literature. For very good reasons. There are none to be found. The critics of the world have turned them inside out and all they can do is to declare Madame Blavatsky to be an impostor. They dare not study her books. Mr. Luntz joins them in this. He puts forward the volumes of Neo-theosophy as just as good - or better - than the books over which H.P.B. burned her life away.
The last public testimony we had here was from Mr. Morris, Secretary-Treasurer of the Adyar Federation group who told a Toronto audience that The Key to Theosophy was too dry to read, and that Besant and Leadbeater were superior.
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DR. BONGGREN'S AUTHORITY
On the conclusion of Mr. R.R. Holm's articles giving a series of selections from the teachings he received and took notes of from the late Dr. Jacob Bonggren, there have been questions raised as to the authority with which they were given. There is no authority of course in any dogmatic sense, but the source of any instruction is of interest and of importance in estimating its primary value. Its real value is necessarily in its effect on the mind of the student and in the degree to which his judgment approves. I met Dr. Bonggren many years ago, but more recently in 1929 while attending the World Theosophical Convention in Chicago. Subsequently he moved to San Francisco and there on April 26, 1939, he wrote me a letter which was obviously not for publication at the time, but may now be printed, since it confirms Mr. Holm's reliance on what Dr. Bonggren told him. Dr. Bonggren made no public claims during his life to special relations with the Masters or other great ones. The real people just go ahead and do their work. By their fruits you can know them. They who find it necessary to trumpet their wonderful powers and the intimacy of their connection with Mahatmas and Dhyan Chohans and the number of initiations through which they have passed, have merely hoisted signals of warning of the personal quality and character of their achievements. Those who know don't talk; those who talk don't know. A sketch of Dr. Bonggren's life appeared in our February issue a year ago. This letter is given in full without omissions which it might be said good taste would have demanded, but the letter is an historic document and should not be misunderstood.
"Dear Sir & Brother, I greatly enjoy reading your good Canadian Theosophist and thank you very much for the
kind letter you wrote me. I believe your magazine to be the only independent Theosophical magazine in existence just now. The O. E. Library Critic is independent, along its own lines. The Theosophist has for many years been very little more than the mouthpiece of the President, and the Los Angeles Theosophy offers rarely anything but quotations from its human Trimurti. Stereotyped Theosophy I cannot stand, unless you give me "Letters from the Masters", and even those were never offered as Holy Writ. I don't believe that our good brother Judge would have liked to be looked upon as infallible, and I am positive that H.P.B. would have abhorred such a thing.
"It was interesting to read how you met W.Q.J. for the first time. I met him first the year after, when he came to Chicago and lectured on the South side, under the auspices of a Spiritualist society. We became close friends and remained so. I did not like 'the split', which I considered to be against the expressed will of the Masters (see 'The Mahatma Letters to A.P. Sinnett'), but objected strongly to the accusations by Annie Besant and others and went with Judge.
"The autocracy and machinations of Mrs. Tingley were too much for me. I kept up my theosophical studies all the time, for in the summer of 1885, when H.P.B. was in Europe and had accepted private pupils, among them the Countess C. Wachtmeister, widow of a Swedish minister of foreign affairs, I was also accepted as such a pupil, and by H.P.B. visiting me astrally one night and 'looking' me over 'astrally,' as it was later put. Like some members of my family in Sweden, I am somewhat of a clairvoyant, but have been quite careful not to mention this, for physicians can put you in an insane asylum for being abnormal that way. And in the T.S. it has sometimes, in some cases, rendered the clairvoyant the title of Arhat - a misnomer, because that is a Bhikkhu degree among the Buddhists. When Annie Besant became president of the T.S., she asked me to re-enter the T.S., and in the E.S. I became a member of the Occult School and chief for the newly created League of Healers, the reason for this being, that I had made a full system of the color radiation which H.P.B. had mentioned in two or three lines in her E.S.T. Instructions of 1889. I wrote about the Occult Chromotherapy in Foster Bailey's magazine in 1923-24 and was translated into Spanish in 1934 and issued in book form.
"The strict pledges taken make it impossible for me to say much more. But I must say this. There are two kinds of clairvoyance, as there are two kinds of Magic. One is to see what you think of and create yourself, as Goethe did, evidently also C.W.L. The other kind is to see something that you have not created.
"Success to you. It is glorious that you are re-elected as a T.S. leader in Canada so often, although daring to express your own opinions. In the U.S. it is different.
ON THE THRESHOLD
By The Dreamer
(Concluded from Page 363)
You must have misunderstood L-, because I am not expecting any such commands. (As to surrendering the body. - D.) What I said was that for a while I thought that the offer of my life for the sake of the Theosophical Society and the spiritual regeneration of the world generally, might be accepted. Since then things have happened which would lead me to think the time is not ripe.
If you follow the advice I gave you some weeks ago patiently, and in right spirit for some time, I have every hope
you will get whatever light and strength is good for you. It is no use merely crying for ambrosia; you must work for it in the right way. Keep a watch over yourself during the waking hours, so that the lower self and personality may not carry you away; and before you go to sleep fix yourself intensely on the Supreme and offer yourself wholly up to Him and to the Gurudeva - . If you can go on doing this a few weeks, and can abstract your mind from all other thoughts and create a centre of peace in the heart at the time, I am sure the result will encourage you again, and you will have a glimpse of the True Life of the Self.
It is very good and generous of you to have sent the money to - when you are so badly off yourself. In your place I should have hesitated to do the charity. I think there is some such thing as excess in virtues, and that is condemned by all sober and balanced minds. However, the Supreme Being that reads every heart and never fails in justice, will, - I am sure, note your sacrifice and reward you in a fitting manner. I trust that now that the Great Motherof the world (Durga) is being worshipped all over Bengal, SHE has poured in Her blessed influence on you, and you are feeling brighter and more peaceful inside. She is Compassion Herself, and I am sure when approached in humility and devotion, She will fulfil the desire of your soul so far as that is good for you.
Things are not as they seem, but I shall not on any account defend myself as against A.B. It is enough that the outer things do not affect our inner and personal relations, and we are as close to each other as ever. And as for the rest, let every one judge for himself whether the position I have taken up is right or not. I stand up only for principles and claim no consideration whatever for my personality. As I told you already, the present crisis is a struggle between principle and personal, and the conduct of the leading members will decide on which side the victory will lie. And so far as I am concerned, I shall, to the last day of my life, side with Truth and Principle without fighting with any person.
If you thus give in to despair at this hour of trial what would be the effect of your conduct on all those who look up to you? And would not all your wise lucubrations lose much of their force and charm? A living faith never fails one at the direst moment, and it is that which the world wants. Wherefore cheer up, present a brave front to all your difficulties and merge your being in Him Who is all Love, Strength and Wisdom.
Why so despondent and despairing? If you cannot keep your mind on the eternal verities learned from the Shastras, if you cannot be patient in darkness, then what is the result of so much study, aspiration and occult practice? Why is this despondency unworthy of an Arya manifesting in you in this crisis? (Gita II-2.) Do not allow despair to overcome the promptings of the heart wherein the Lord dwells, for then you shall not be able to see the Truth therein. Him whom the Lord favors, He takes away everything from. Your trials and sufferings seem to indicate that. It is because you have passed the lower trials, that harder ones are being imposed on you. So take care that you may not fall into illusions. Seek the Lotus Feet of the All-Compassionate Lord, and all fear and suffering will dissipate like the morning mist before the rising sun. Come to me as early as possible. Remember - '
You have no longer to confine yourself to the abstract and universal aspect of the Self. (Because in the beginning an universal trend is necessary to purify
the personal bias. - D.) Time there was, when personal experiences though of the highest kinds went to feed unconsciously the separative element in you. (This is the danger of the personal 'I' reference in psychic states. This also shows where the self-consciousness of an aspirant is. People who indulge in the notion as to discipleship being a personal relation ought to take warning. - D.) Hence in order that your soul may catch a glimpse of the harmony and solidarity of the Universal Self, (The Self as the All, this is 'seeking the way out'
of the personal in us, so that we may learn the message of the Beyond. - D.) there was your so-called fall. And you will remember how black and dreary life looked to you. Now you have learned the lesson, and can easily, if you so wish, see the Beauteous Form majestic, of Him of the Flute. (Shri Krishna) Or if your heart hungers you can see and realize the grandiose Majesty and Form of MAHAMAYA and trace Her play in and through the world of forms. (Devi. - the Consciousness of the Self. - D.) Whatever little there is of obstruction will vanish ere long, most probably by the coming Durga Puja. Then you will
know for certain whether you have been left alone or not.
Why torment your soul with the thought that you have not been accepted by the Gurudeva? (I was looking for a concrete and external event of an Initiation, such as now enthralls the fancy of so many earnest Theosophists. - D.) Do not your own experiences belie that conception? True, you have not been able in your physical brain consciousness to define and grasp the life of the Master. But is the brain-knowledge the criterion? Is not the hunger to define, the action of Ahamkara? Is it so priceless that you would fain reduce the unity of perception within to a concrete physical phenomenon or image? Is not the richness and glow of the Unity of Life which now plays through you and produces such physical results, - the very result of the enlivening of your consciousness on the highest planes? Is not the Power of Unity, the irradiation of that Divine Wisdom which passeth all understanding and maketh for righteousness? What you cried for was withheld so long lest it should feed the Ahamkara in you. But now there is every hope that the giant weed will not grow in the atmosphere of eternal thought, (Light on the Path) and that the Gurudeva, or even the Lord Himself, or His Divine Consort, will ere long manifest in you without your being blinded by the effulgence. The time is fast approaching for that. But you must not think of enjoying that Beatific Presence every day or so at will. That will depend on where your 'I' remains after a vision or two. Rest assured, however, that we as well as the Gurudeva are always ever with you though you may not fully realize the presence. But due to particular reason which you can now divine, you have been helped and supported, so far as practical, from behind the veil. Now I think there is no longer any necessity for the hide-and-seek game. You have studied the Bhagabata and the Lila Divine of Sree Krishna and must have realized the necessity of the hide-and-seek game.
You must really excuse my answering questions of the kind and learn for yourself the right way of taking a dream which purports to be merely prophetic, specially when the time given for its test is so near at hand. The 16th of Bysak (The Bengali January) is close by, and will very soon show the worth of the dream. The hour of death is unalterably fixed for all persons as a rule, so that nothing can change it. Your foreknowledge of the event, even if it were reliable, would not be of any avail. Why then, this curiosity in the matter? Curiosity is quite intelligible and
natural in every ordinary man of the world; but in a student of occultism, it is a little out of place. (For it fixes the attention of the soul on the earthly and finite, instead of on the Ever-present and the Unchanging Self. - D.) The very indulgence in it hinders his growth and it serves no good purpose. It does not help but rather retards the influx of the inner 'Life and Light' of whose absence you complain so much.
I am sorry to hear of that dear girl S.- The laws of the inner Life are difficult to understand, and more difficult to attune ourselves with. However, there is no cause for despair though she may apparently have tripped and fallen from her high stage, yet in the long run, it is bound to be beneficial and productive of good results. I really do not know if I have anything more to say at present. In fact, it is not words that help one under trials of this nature - however full of wisdom they may be. What is needed is strength from inside, that is, from the Lord within.
I do not know what your orders are, nor from whence they proceed. (This refers to an order from the Master as to my attitude regarding the recent developments in the T.S.D.) But so as they are justifiable to reason and conscience and consonant with the trend of the Shastras, I,have nothing to say. Otherwise, you know what I think of psychic authority, and how I object to its being imposed in any way on others. I may mention here in passing that I do not apprehend that Mr. Leadbeater's opinion as to Kali-worship will influence many of Her devotees. You may remember years ago, he said something very similar in respect to Sree Jagannath, and the result was he lost his credit with a fairly large number of Hindu members. (Kali is the Beyond-ness of Consciousness, ever seeking to withdraw the finite projections of the Self into the One Self. Jagannath is the manifestation of the Pure Self the Silent Watcher of the Prakritic panorama, the Nirguna Atman. Both conceptions are difficult for even the separated occultist to grasp. - D.) Why should it be any different this time? I can not see. I believe he is only digging his own grave as false prophets usually do.
Can't you go on quietly and steadily with your word for some time? Do you know that this restlessness, of itself apart from every thing, is an obstacle? Why not then try to get rid of this, and plant your foot firmly on the faith that the Law is good and just, and works for the betterment alike of the individual and the world? Is there not a perennial fount of consolation and strength in this conception? It is no easy task to transcend the personal, and impatience will certainly not help in the achievement. To thirst and strive for it is all right, but the way to attain it is by well-regulated and methodical efforts towards the universal stratum, and not by nervous spasms. It is not enough to keep one's eyes and heart and soul unalterably and constantly fixed on it. It is necessary to work at it with untiring patience life after life, and aeon after aeon, cleansing every thought and passion, and weeding out every seed of separateness from the mind, and resting all the while in complete faith on the Supreme. This is the true Buddhi, the convergence of Consciousness towards the One Self of which the Gita speaks.
Of course, the Love of the Gurudeva is necessary to reach the Self: but, brother mine, know you not that the real Gurudeva is verily the Ocean of Compassion, limitless and infinite in expanse and unfathomable in depth. (Cf. Bhagabata I-1-15 - Ganga purifies when seen and touched, but the Lords of Compassion when merely remembered. - D.) But there are so few souls that hunger after
that Compassion. The Guru is ever ready, nay, solicitous to indicate the path to the Self. But there are not many who are ready to tread the same. We are apt to think, that we are utterly clean in our hearts, and that the service of the Lord is the one object of our existence. Hence we are grieved when a sight of the Divine is denied to us. But if we scrutinize ourselves with true Viveka, we can at once see that which we seek for, is not the Self but kama and desire for personal stature. Hence is it, that despair and disappointment dog ever our endeavors and aspirations. From the resulting pain and sufferings germinate the seeds of true Moksha, the desire for the Lord; and the Jiva begins to tread on the real path. This is the essence of all the teachings of the Shastras, and you know it. Why then should you grieve and torture your soul like an ignorant child? It may be however, that the portals of your heart will open through the anguish and the pain, and in time you may see the fulfilment of your heart's longings and stand face to face with the Self.
I made some effort in the direction indicated by you, but do not know exactly how far I have succeeded. Did you get any vivid and inspiring ideas about ISWARA? I do not think it is easy to improve on what is given in the Gita and the Bhagabat. Then He is certainly no abstraction but the most living Reality, - in closest touch with man in all possible points. (Bhagabat VII-vi-19-21.) He is not difficult to please, being the Self of all and self-realized in every thing, from the highest to the lowest present in everything, in the compound of the Bhutas, the elements in the Gunas, in quiescence as well as in their irradiation, - in the 'I' as well as in the object, He is of the nature of pure Consciousness and Bliss of the Shastras. But few can grasp the complete picture as delineated in either of those Divine Works.
The Lord of Maya, the Abode of Love, the Fount of Peace eternal. - It is no easy conception, yet He is pre-eminently all that. All in One, with the World-Mother seated on His lap ever trying to express Her consort's infinite prowess and compassion and wisdom. He is the Supreme Father who casts the seed; She - the Supreme Mother who holds the seed in her living womb, nurtures it and develops it into the wonderful universe. At the same time He dwells in every heart, the Consummation of all desires, the End of everything, the 'I' Kahettragna in every field. There is nothing ever so insignificant where He liveth not, - where He is not indicated. Ineffable He!!! The Beyondness of Being and Consciousness. How can poor mortal man comprehend and describe Him?
Vague though our knowledge yet it has stirred men in all times, in all climes to lofty deeds and to loftier thoughts. For is HE not the very Bliss in our joys, the one Reality in our object, the one goal of the 'I' in us? His depths, - giants cannot wade: yet man can and does find in Him his only solace and strength, - nay even the woman and the Sudra can live in him if the heart turns towards Him. HE is the goal, the End, the consummation of Vidya, of Theosophy.
Peace to all beings.
The two chief incidents of the past months were the failure of the Germans to capture Stalingrad with the loss in their defeat of 330,000 men killed or captured; and the visit of President Roosevelt and Premier Churchill to North Africa. Their ostensible object was a consultation on war aims and methods, but this could have been held almost anywhere else. The choice of
location may have been the entirely unsatisfactory situation resulting from the placing of Vichy-minded Frenchmen in positions of authority. There is a class of political professionals who care nothing for principles but play humanity as some men play the stock-market for anything that may turn up, and as they cannot be relied upon for anything but what affects their own interests and advantages, these vicious Vichyites seized the opportunity to entrench themselves in Algeria as they had already in Morocco, and left it to General Eisenhower to make the explanations.
General de Gaulle, who has been the sparkplug all along for the Free French, now the Fighting French, will have nothing to do with these Opportunists, who would turn to Germany tomorrow if Germany showed signs of winning. General Giraud; who, after the assassination of Admiral Darlan, was appointed leader of all the French forces in northern Africa, will not discuss politics, declares he does not read the papers nor listen to the radio, but that while he will cooperate with de Gaulle in military matters, there is an irreconcilable difference between them in politics which can only be settled after the war by the forty million French people.
It would be incorrect to think that the somewhat tardy progress made by the united armies in north Africa was due to these political differences, but they have certainly not facilitated matters. The weather has been against the Allies. Insufficient air force at first delayed attack. The escape of Rommel from the Montgomery chase was a complication scarcely counted upon. And the German strategists have been clever enough to make the most of an admittedly difficult terrain. The job will be done but will take more time and tears than was expected by hopeful observers of the first landing.
The Germans admit the loss of a million men since the beginning of the Russian winter campaign. To face the loss of another quarter of a million in the armies cut off from escape in the Caucasus, while the northern Russian campaign raising, the siege of Leningrad, and at Velikie Luki, Rzhev and Smolensk may well account for another million, and the Russians are making such headway on the line Orel, Kursk and Kharkov, that there need be no surprise if the whole German front is broken as it has been further south. The fall of Rostok is hourly expected as we write.
Human nature is a peculiar element. Many who ought to see in Russia their deliverance from Hitlerism, are beginning to fear the power that has saved them. And as the war progresses more favorably for the United Nations, the reactionary forces are lifting up their heads once more, and seeing that they are not going to be murdered in their beds they are planning how best to restore the shape of things that were. The isolationists identify themselves with the high tariff corporationists; the sound money men beckon to the wheat kings to come over and help; the cheap kings to come over and help; the cheap-labor men rally their legions against these new theories of social security. The Republican party in the United States is willing to abandon everything gained in the last ten years if it can achieve a party victory, and the Old Tories in Britain are plucking up courage over this news.
Monsignor John A. Ryan of Washington, "U.S. Catholicism's most potent social reformer," to quote Time, Jan. 11, recognized this trend in a speech at the convention of the American Catholic Sociological Society. "The National Association of Manufacturers; the attitudes and utterances of a majority of the metropolitan newspapers; the pronouncements and performances of the
most powerful of the farm organizations, and the reactionary attitude of the majority of the recently elected Congress . . . They have learned nothing and forgotten nothing."
What will be the result if these Bourbons get their way? Another generation will have to fight another war, ten times more devilish than the present, in which the western races will succumb to those who live more in harmony with Cosmic determination, and the essential unity of the interests of mankind. In other words the selfish men of the race will meet the fate they are engineering for themselves.
Dorothy Thompson, who is usually well-informed, thinks that the employment of former and still suspected Vichyites in North Africa by General Eisenhower is intended to appease General Franco in Spain. There is reason to believe, she says, "that among the old Vichyites, with whom we are playing, are informers of the Germans, and the lack of a clear situation creates unease amongst troops and population. Also one wonders whether the Spanish menace is not vastly overrated. The Spanish Moroccan Army has no supply lines, and an army without supply lines is a bluff. The latent threat the Germans might invade Spain has been dissipated by events in Russia."
Be this as it may, the German cause, and the Vichy cause, and the Italian cause, and the Japanese cause, are lost causes, even if no other than Russia continued to defeat them.
Theosophy in Ireland quotes the following from Mrs. Eileen Bigland's book, The Key to the Russian Door: "Everybody was busy, everybody advancing in some direction, and at each turn you felt the pulse of life once so faintly discernible in Leningrad throbbing more strongly throughout the vast Union. After the apathy which settled upon you in sick Europe, indeed, this sense of life almost overwhelmed you, for it caught you like a wave, tossed and buffeted you, left you quite breathless."
It is this vitality, this abounding youth set free in a new nation, a nation that has just found itself, just as the American Republic found itself 150 years ago, that promises new and loftier standards for the world, and a new inspiration for both war and peace, to be up and doing to achieve their realization.
WISDOM IN PRACTICE
This volume may disappoint students who have read previous books by the author Vera Stanley Alder. It may be a useful guide or stepping-stone for the multitudes who have not yet become acquainted with the first principles of Life and Nature. In using the language of orthodoxy it is almost impossible to get the reader to abandon the meanings which are familiar to him, so that their new significance does not reach him, and he is more mystified than ever by what is expected to enlighten him. The aim of the book is to find out "just how much each one of us is responsible for the state of human affairs today." It is divided into three parts, Self-Analysis, World-Analysis, and Wisdom in Practice. The open-minded reader will find the volume helpful and enlightening, but it seems to be addressed rather to the Church masses whose ingrained prejudices close their minds to all new influences. We note typographical errors on pages 66 and 69. And on page 59 near the top is "disseminated" not a mistake for "dissipated?" (Rider & Co.- 8/6) .
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THEOSOPHY AND THE MODERN WORLD
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THE WISDOM OF CHINA AND INDIA
Lin Yutang's latest work is an anthology of the wisdom and ideals of life in Asia. In it will be found authoritative translations of the best of the sacred books of Hinduism, Buddhism, Confucianism, and Taoism. Lin Yutang has made a special point of choosing his selections from the literary as well as the philosophical viewpoint and as a result has produced one of the best compilations yet published. He has made many new translations of the Chinese classics and has supplied general and separate introductions. These are especially interesting in view of the standing of the author, both as a Chinese scholar and as an English author. The work is carefully annotated and is supplied with glossaries of Hindu and Chinese terms. Dynastic tables are also included.
The Indian section includes Hymns from the Rigveda, selections from the Upanishads, The Bhavagad Gita (complete) and the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali (without commentaries). A translation of the Ramayana is included.
In the Buddhist section are to be found the maxims of Dhammapada, three sermons by Buddha, some parables and legends, Sir Edwin Arnold's Light of Asia, and the Surangama Sutra.
A number of selections have been chosen from the rich fund of Indian humor.
For the Chinese section Lin Yutang has selected the Book of Tao by Laotse, selections from Chaungtse, the mystic and humorist, the Aphorisms of Confucius, and the Golden Mean of Tsesze.
To understand the philosophy of a people, one should also know something of their principles of government, their ways of life, and likewise something about their wit and wisdom, for these two go hand in hand. Lin Yutang has supplied this need with many selections from the classics.
Throughout the commentaries there runs a strong social note, and a profound veneration for all that is best in these two ancient and Eastern civilizations. There is also scathing criticism; not entirely unwarranted, of Western ideals and materialistic ways of life.
He notes that the great age of Western appreciation of Indian literature and philosophy, the age of Sir William Jones, Franz Bopp and Sir Edwin Arnold, all too soon passed, to be succeeded by the period of exploitation, a period accompanied by the slightly superior and hostile attitude which characterized the work of Englishmen writing on Indian subjects. "Kipling allowed himself the most astounding generalizations about Indian duplicity and mendacity . . . . India today has become an untouchable topic, and the most untouchable topic is about the untouchable caste of Englishmen in India - I must forbear to touch the topic now."
Lin Yutang confesses to a personal bias toward the Mahayana school of Buddhism and has largely used Mahayana texts based on Chinese translations from the Sanskrit.
His comments on the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali are of interest. He notes that the Yoga systems of India are the most widely known aspect of Hindu philosophy and mysticism. The reason for the popularity of Yoga is twofold. It arises from the combination of a system of physical regimen, that has something to do with physical and mental health, with a mystic search for inner stability and the psychic depths of man's soul. . . There is of course the claim to supernatural powers and to the general hocus-pocus of all forms of occultism.
The influence of Theosophy in bringing Yoga to the attention of the West is not mentioned, credit is given largely to modern psychologists such as Jung and Freud, and the author is inclined to believe that much of the work by Jung is of high value. Nevertheless, he notes that Jung himself says that "We have not clearly grasped the fact that Western Theosophy is an amateurish imitation of the East. We are just taking up astrology again, and that to the oriental is his daily bread . . . . Oriental texts ten centuries old introduce us to philosophical relativism, while the idea of indetermination, newly broached in the west, furnishes the very basis of Chinese science."
Possibly one of the finest passages in the whole work, is Lin Yutang's criticism of Western materialism to be found in his preface to the section on "The Wisdom of China."
"The Chinese temperment is humanistic, but it is also profoundly mystical, and the West is turning somewhat that way as witness Dr. Alexis Carrel and A.S. Eddington. The nineteenth century shallow rationalism naively believed that the question 'What is a blade of grass' could be answered adequately by considering the blade of grass as a purely mechanical problem. The contemporary scientific attitude is that it cannot. Since Walt Whitman asked that question with his profound mysticism, no one has been able to answer it and no scientist will presume to answer it today. And let us remember, in that mysticism and distrust of the mechanistic view of the universe, Walt Whitman is Chinese. It is my conviction that the progress of contemporary science is forcing modern thought to develop in the direction of depth and of a new synthesis of the mechanical and the spiritual of matter and spirit."
There are vast differences between Chinese thought and Western thought, in style and methods and objectives. "So far as any systematic epistimology or metaphysics is concerned, China has had to import it from India. The Chinese have too much sense for systematic philosophy, for the sea of human life forever laps upon the shores of Chinese thought. China distrusts systematic philosophy.
Per contra, we in the West have no philosophy either - we have none for living at any rate. We have professors of philosophy but no philosophers.
Lin Yutang believes scientific materialism to have hopelessly paralyzed the European humanities and to have thrown it into utter rout and confusion. "We have come to the end of the road."
"Pseudo-scientific naturalism in the humanities must forever remain inadequate and pathetic, because of the discrepancy between method and material.
. . . Our conception of the nature of man has been falsified, debased. The bottom has been knocked out of our human universe; the structure cannot hold; something must break. Out of the shattered fragments of modern knowledge a new world must be built, and East and West must build it together."
The Wisdom of China and India is published in Canada by MacMillans, St. Martin's House, Toronto, at $4.95.
BROTHERHOOD IN INDUSTRY
Toward the closing years of the nineteenth century, an American engineer, Frederick W. Taylor, played with stop watches and with various shapes of cutting tools so that thereby he might be enabled to increase production and curtail the man-hours of labour required. From his work the cult of efficiency-engineering arose, a cult which reached its apex some time after the last war. Motion study became a fetish and when coupled with the mass production technique introduced by Henry Ford, it gave rise to the speed-up and to all the evils associated with conveyor belt assembly lines.
These things are not evil in themselves; motion study and mass production techniques can be used to make the lot of labor lighter; but as now em-ployed they become the instruments whereby the culminating phase of laissez-faire capitalism extracts the last ounce of blood from labor. Here as always labor has been considered simply as a commodity to be bought and sold on the open market.
Some little time after the introduction of efficiency methods, the era of paternalism came into being. Labor, while still a commodity, was thought to possess rather peculiar properties, it had to be propitiated and cajoled, and at times, somewhat hypocritically, it was thought necessary to protect it from itself. Hence industrial relations departments came into being; welfare schemes were introduced; playgrounds established; recreational facilities operating through company clubs were inaugurated; and for the protection of the worker from the rapaciousness of union organizers, company "Link" unions were established.
Today saner views prevail in some quarters, though not by any means in all. The vicious speed-up system still flourishes, while company-sponsored welfare schemes and Link unions are still assiduously and insidiously, forced on employees who want none of them. Particularly is this true of Canada.
Nevertheless, while these vestiges of the laissez-faire attitude remain and probably always will remain, so long as nineteenth century capitalism survives, further developments have taken place which promise much for the future. These developments have arisen out of changed attitudes toward labor. Labor is no longer being considered solely as a commodity, and it is now being recognized both by labor unions and by company management that arbitrary wage and salary schedules, or hit and miss bargaining procedures are no longer adequate. More scientific means have to be employed, means which recognize the essentially cooperative nature of the modern industrial or business organization.
"Equity requires that differentials in compensation should conform to the differentials between the levels of work in the organization as a whole. All are workers and the payroll problem, according to the aspect of organization is internal rather than external to the enterprise." (J.O. Hopwood; Salaries, Wages and Labor Relations)
Recognition of the foregoing principles has given rise to modern techniques of job evaluation which have been found to be almost uniformly successful, wherever applied.
Arising out of the essentially cooperative nature of modern enterprise is another development, one which augurs well for the continuance and expansion of democratic processes. Paralleling the work of employee representation committees, or of union leaders in negotiating with management on matters of wages and working conditions, joint committees on production have also come into being. These of course have been created essentially for the one purpose of helping win the war, but it is doubtful if they will be done away with when peace comes.
These trends give point to the conclusions of Peter F. Drucker (Longmans) whose book The Future of Industrial Man has been written to demonstrate the necessity for bringing democracy into industry if our civilization is to survive and we are to retain our privileges as free people.
In a way there is a refreshing modesty about the author. He does not pretend to know what the industrial society of the future will be like. Post-war blueprints, social mechanics, pat solutions for concrete situations are useless. Nevertheless, post-war problems cannot be put aside, if for no other
reason than that the future will be an industrial future and this future has already had its beginnings in the present war. This is an industrial war, the first of its kind.
The future, according to Drucker, is not completely determined, for while this society will be an industrial society, we must decide now on the principles on which it is to be founded. It may be a totalitarian society of one kind or another, or it may be a free society. Drucker plumps for the free society and endeavors to show how freedom can still be preserved. To win the present war for freedom, we shall have to achieve the social organization of power, economic and otherwise, and we shall have to reform the bases of character. This war is a global war; but it is also a civil war, with vast revolutions and reorganizations of the social fabric going on underneath the surface.
From whom are we to preserve our freedom? Drucker asks. Certainly not from the merchantilist for he is already extinct as a vital controlling force. Nor is it to be preserved from the free-booting capitalist of the Jay Gould or Vanderbilt type. The capitalist has abdicated his rights in favor of the manager. As for the manager, he too, has abdicated, relinquishing his powers to the government.
Something over a year or so ago, a book, The Managerial Revolution by Burnham excited mach interest. But Drucker oberves with good reason that The Managerial Revolution was out of date before it was published. The managerial society which Burnham had forecast for the future had already come, in the first third of the present century, and it now belongs to the past.
Power in and over the industrial plant is the basis of social rule and power in an industrial world. Centralized bureaucratic government has almost succeeded in taking this power away from its former holders, the corporation managers. And corporation managers are unable to resist.
But freedom cannot be maintained if the centralized government should retain the social power; the best that could be hoped for would be an "enlightened despotism." On the other hand, society cannot function if the old managerial rule were restored - provided it were at all possible. The central fact in the social crisis of our time, as Drucker sees it, is that the industrial plant has become the basic social unit, but that it is not as yet a social institution.
The conclusion is reached that the only solution which makes possible both a free and a functioning society is the development of the plant into a self-governing community. And the time to start this is now, when workers and management, producers and consumers, are united in the one purpose of winning the war.
Along with political freedom the future requires economic freedom, along with political democracy it also requires economic democracy.
No quarrel can be found with Drucker's thesis and his conclusions, though one might be inclined to discount certain of his observations and supporting arguments.
THE BHAGAVAD GITA
A Conflation prepared from available English translations by the General Secretary
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