Divine Wisdom Brotherhood Occult Science
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VOL. XXIV, No. 4 Hamilton, June 15th, 1943 Price 20 Cents
THE FALL OF THE ANGELS
The archaic commentaries explain, as the reader must remember, that, of the Host of Dhyanis, whose turn it was to incarnate as the Egos of the immortal, but, on this plane, senseless, monads - that some "obeyed" (the law of evolution) immediately when the men of the Third Race became physiologically and physically ready, i.e., when they had separated into sexes. These were those early conscious Beings who, now adding conscious knowledge to their inherent Divine purity, created by Kriyasakti, the semi-Divine man, who became the seed on earth for future adepts. Those, on the other hand, who, jealous of their intellectual freedom (unfettered as it then was by the bonds of matter), said: - "We can choose . . . . we have wisdom." (See verse 24), and incarnated far later - these had their first Karmic punishment prepared for them. They got bodies (physiologically) inferior to their astral models because their chhayas had belonged to progenitors of an inferior degree in the seven classes. As to those "Sons of Wisdom" who had "deferred" their incarnation till the Fourth Race, which was already tainted (physiologically) with sin and impurity, they produced a terrible cause, the Karmic result of which weighs on them to this day. It was produced in themselves, and they became the carriers of that seed of iniquity for aeons to come, because the bodies they had to inform had become defiled through their own procrastination. (See verses 32, 36)
This was the "Fall of the Angels," because of their rebellion against Karmic Law. The "fall of man" was no fall, for he was irresponsible. But "Creation" having been invented on the dualistic system as the "prerogative of God alone," the legitimate attribute patented by theology in the name of an infinite deity of their own making, this power had to be regarded as "Satanic," and as an usurpation of divine rights. Thus, the foregoing, in the light of such narrow views, must naturally be considered as a terrible slander on man, "created in the image of God," a still more dreadful blasphemy in the face of the dead letter dogma. "Your doctrine," the Occultists were already told, "makes of man, created out of dust in the likeness of his God, a vehicle of the Devil from the first." "Why did you make of your god a devil - both, moreover, created IN your own image?" is our reply. The esoteric interpretation of the Bible, however, sufficiently refutes this slanderous invention of theology; the Secret Doctrine must some day become the just Karma of the Churches - more anti-Christian than the representative assemblies of the most confirmed Materialists and Atheists. - The Secret Doctrine, II, 228
THE SIGNIFICANCE OF THE SECRET DOCTRINE
BY Cecil Williams
(Synopsis of an address before the Hamilton Theosophical Society, White Lotus Day, 1943)
We are today playing our little parts in the most tremendous drama of recorded history. Never before has the whole world been the stage for a human crisis. Many threads run through the plot but it is one and indivisible. The present war, spanning the earth, affecting all races, is only a phase of the struggle. The precise outcome is unpredictable. Not even the Masters know the exact result. Combining the mechanical laws of the universe with the known future created by past Karma, they may make shrewd and often accurate inferences, but they cannot always predict what the free spirit of man may do. They cannot always say whether he will turn to the left or to the right: And humanity is now at a parting of the ways.
If you walk from here to King street and turn to the left you will arrive at Toronto. Turn to the right, and you get to Niagara Falls. Your decision, persisted in, determines your destination, and if you take a train, you cannot turn back. If humanity as a whole, after this war, allows greed, and selfishness and hate and prejudice to govern its decisions, its destination will be very different to that it will reach if sanity and the feeling of brotherhood prevail. The prospect, in the one event, is that of terror; in the other, of historically unexampled progress and felicity.
An instance, in each case will suffice to illustrate the contrast. The war has greatly stimulated the science of electronics, a science which had its germ in a laboratory in England with one of the Masters whispering suggestions in the ear of a scientist, Sir William Crookes, and an article in Liberty tells us some of the marvels that electronics will make available to us in the near future. Among other things, it will make the blind to see, the deaf to hear, end automobile and grade crossing accidents. And, the investigators say, this is only a beginning. All these, among other gifts will be ours, if we retain our sanity, and sacrifice our personal greeds and prejudices for greater benefits than the emotions can give us.
But if we do not! If we hate and fear and quarrel, then civilization will decline and ignorance and poverty increase. About six hundred years ago the Black Death swept over Europe. Within a year half the people of England died from the plague. Recently we were told, in Time, that the Black Death has made its appearance among the wild animals of this continent and is slowly creeping eastward. Our public health measures keep it at bay, but suppose preventive medicine collapses in a depressed educational and economic condition, what guarantee have we that the Black Death will not sweep across America as once it swept over Europe? There are about 170,000 people in Hamilton. Think of 85,000 of them dying in a year!
To understand something of Blavatsky's part in the world drama, we must go back to the Renaissance when we emerged from the Dark Ages, and glance at two movements, cyclic evolution and the interference by the Masters with the normal course of events. As the Renaissance opens Paracelsus, the Occultist, appears, who before he was murdered, gave us the germ of modern chemistry, whose fruits we are beginning to gather today in wonderful plastics and vitamins and health-preserving drugs. He wrote in cryptic language, as did the mystic, Boehme, who accompanied the group of philosophers in the century succeeding Paracelsus, who laid the foundations of modern
science. Among them were Galileo, the Italian; Francis Bacon, the Englishman; Descartes, the Frenchman; Spinoza, the Dutch Jew, and Leibniz, the Slav. These were not Occultists, though Leibniz came nearest to being one. They were, in one sense, the product of Karma, but Paracelsus was the messenger of the Masters.
It is unnecessary to describe the developments in astronomy, research, mathematics, psychology, physics and metaphysics, which grew from the seeds sown by the philosophers of the Renaissance, but always there was interference with normal progress, an effort on the part of the Masters to get the leading minds of every age to see more clearly into Truth, which makes men free and fosters their true happiness. The activities of the Masters become more visible in the mission of Count St. Germain, Cagliostro and Mesmer, and, a century later, Blavatsky and Olcott. In some quarters there has been an effort to falsify history by pretending Olcott did not exist, but Olcott's work was as essential to Blavatsky's success as her work was to his.
When Blavatsky and Olcott appeared Science had become materialistic and Religion had become stubbornly Dogmatic. It was the hope of the Masters M. and K.H. that a Universal Brotherhood should be founded, but even before Blavatsky's death it was seen that this effort had failed. It was resolved to make some capital out of the venture, however, for in the only known letter of the Chohan it is said that the Theosophical Society was to be made the cornerstone of the future religions of the world.
This is a retreat. It is not even one religion that is spoken of, a universal religion, but religions in the plural, probably in different parts of the world. Hence the extraordinarly efforts taken to keep Blavatsky, a dying woman, alive, until she had finished writing The Secret Doctrine. Every religion must have its cosmogenesis, its explanation of the creation of the world, and the Stanzas of Dzyan will replace the creation allegories of the dying religions of today.
Few realize how near death religions are everywhere. In the east and the west the story is the same. How firmly established Mohammedanism seemed in Turkey, yet it is gone like a dream dissolved. In Britain we have heard of a revival of Christianity, yet a recent poll by Mass-Observation showed that only one person out of ten went to church, and only one person out of ten believed that religion would play any significant part in the post-war world. The leading minds of the age have repudiated the Genesis of Christianity. It was not without reason that Blavatsky prophesied that the Twentieth century might be the last of the Christian Era. We are only at the beginning of great changes.
Yet the multitude cannot live without Faith and without Authority. And their authorities are the leading minds of the age. There are men who believe in relativity, although they do not know what it is, and can scarce distinguish one mathematical sign from another. But they believe because the great Einstein has said it and those who profess to know pay homage to him. And the multitude, which has been excessively free, is learning discipline and the merits of Authority. One of these days the leading minds of the age will discover the Stanzas of Dzyan are written in cryptic language, and Blavatsky's commentary is also frequently cryptic and often refers not to what the Stanzas themselves say but to what one having the key infers that they say. In the radionic tube the scientist puts his hand upon the occult. He does not know that because he does not know the philosophy of Occultism. He has a practical key in his grasp but not the general theoreti-
cal key. But our modern philosophers are finding pieces of this universal key. You will discover them in Freud and Jung, in Einstein and Planck, Whitehead and Bertrand Russell, Korzybski and Bogoslovsky. One day these pieces will be put together and the Secret Doctrine will cease to be a puzzle, and will be found to be the ultimate in Science which we call Occultism. Then the old philosophies and theologies will be rejected by the discerning, even the six schools of India. The Truth that comes to us, archaic and yet fresh, from the trans-Himalayas, will yet triumph.
What the extent of that triumph we do not know. We are swinging, as Plato said we always would, from democracy to dictatorship. Compromise will probably be made with the dying religions. In the West we may have new forms of Christianity, in the East new forms of Buddhism. The trend will be determined by those in power, and the outcome of events. The Stanzas may find new commentators, and The Secret Doctrine forgotten as Roger Bacon's Opus Majus is forgotten. At any event, the abstractions of The Secret Doctrine like the abstractions of mathematics will tend to keep occult philosophy in the hands of the few. These are conjectures; we cannot say what will crystallise from the flux of the present.
It is evident, however, that the tendency in the Theosophical Movement generally, has been away from occultism or knowledge and towards religion or faith. Contributions from the Movement to science have been rare. The theological aspect has been stressed. As in the Dark Ages, and in the church, generally, the appeal has been to Authority. The scholasticism of the Dark Ages appealed to the Bible, the Church Fathers and Aristotle; in the Theosophical Movement the appeal has been to Blavatsky, or the Mahatma Letters or some lesser teacher. How contrary to the spirit of the age opened by the Renaissance, and to modern science generally, where the appeal is not to human or quasi-divine authority but to Nature, the voice of the Divine itself. It is no wonder that new religions have sprung, already, from the Movement. They have been insignificant, it is true, but they are the flicker that precedes the lightning flash.
The lesson is that we should face things as they are and as they are likely to become. It is too much to expect a general reversal of policy in the Movement, for the tide flows too strongly, but individuals may throw what influence they have on the side of the spirit of science, and the profounder thinkers may see more clearly that metaphysics is not speculative belief, but is the greatest of the sciences. Between metaphysics and physics there is no essential difference in principle. Leibniz stated, though without clarity of explication, the two complementary principles or laws as he calls them, that apply to both. The first is the law of sufficient reason.
That an apple, when loosened from its stalk, falls to the ground, men have had evidence since apples first grew. The fall could be described but never explained until Newton discovered gravitation. That gravity is a sufficient reason Einstein has given us cause to doubt. But to the occultist, aware of the sufficient reason knows that the facts being what they are it is inconceivable that the apple should not fall. This inconceivability is the second of Leibniz's principles, what he calls the law of contradiction.
In the Stanzas of Dzyan it is said that the One Ray falls as Three into Four into the lap of Maya. By Leibniz's laws, the metaphysician should not only comprehend what is meant by the One Ray, the Three, the Four and the lap of Maya, but what is the sufficient reason for this "fall." It is not enough to accept the description but to know the
reason why so completely that it is seen as inconceivable that the One should not Fall as Three into Four into the lap of Maya.
As the physicist knowing the law of gravity does not require to see an apple fall to declare that it must, so the metaphysician does not require to see the fall of the One Ray. Knowing the sufficient reason the physicist has the evidence of his senses to confirm the fact that gravitation is a law. The case is similar with the metaphysician. The latter looks to Nature, where he sees the signature, as Boehme called it, or the unquestionable evidence, of all things. When the Lanoo, in the Stanzas, asks where was Darkness, the Teacher directs his attention to the flame in his own lamp.
When we wrote of The War last month we were on the eve of the important final operations that preceded the collapse of the Nazi forces in Tunisia. Knowing the imminence of the developments in question it was prudent to say nothing about it, but now that it is a matter of history, and the British premier has assured the troops engaged that no more important action will be achieved during the war, we may leave those honors to history and turn to what is apparently an equally imminent crisis involving the invasion of Europe. Here again, prudence may be the proper method, for the situation may be precipitated before this is in the hands of our readers. An attack is expected on Italy, but it might as well be on France or on the Balkans and the Germans are even so occupied with their own theories of attack that they think it might be through Spain. No one outside the councils of the High Command can say whether it will be from the north or from the south, through France, Italy, Greece or even Albania. Or from the North Sea on the many coastal points as vulnerable there as elsewhere. Nor may the first attack be anything more than a feint. The enemy do not know what to think and are said to be depending on their calculation that no attack can be made by the Allies till the Fall. The assiduity with which Allied Committees, Councils and other agencies are sitting and consulting and planning the future relief necessary for the people of the emancipated nations once the devilish rule of their oppressors and robbers is broken, should convince the Nazis, if they understood what humane and honest and peaceful people have in their hearts and minds, that the end of the war is not so very far away. Food in unparallelled quantities will be needed on the first intimation of peace. And we may be sure that the Germans will be the first to demand to be fed. All in good time, messieurs les Assassins, but the victims will be the first consideration. There will be policing arrangements to be completed, and sanitation will be another thing at the head of the lists with medical care and hospitalization. It would be amusing, were it not so pitiful to read some of the multitudinous suggestions made by the armchair philanthropists, who generally do not know the extent of the evils to be remedied, not to mention the amount of the resources that may be available or the sufficiency of the agencies to be employed in their application and distribution. All these things must be attended to and worked out in detail before proper relief can be set in motion. And even before this it will be necessary to secure the certain cooperation of all concerned. Those who know the touchy nature of some of the stricken peoples and their unwillingness "to be beholden" to strangers, even when in dire straits, are aware that diplomacy of the most delicate kind is required when some starving prejudices are to be soothed. We have had the Beveridge plan discussed for the future of Britain and counter plans for the United States
by native experts. We have had ex-president Hoover's book, written with the assistance of another expert, and we have seen it torn to tatters by other experts. All these discussions at least help the public to understand the magnitude of the calamity that has to be faced and compassionated. Nothing finer in its comprehensive outlook, its profound grasp of detail, and its practical conceptions of what ought to be and what can be done, than the Fourth Report of FORTUNE, being one of "a series of reports on potential courses for democratic action," this one being specially on "Relations with Europe." One might like to quote columns of this tractate, but the essentials on which it dwells should be impressed on the minds of all readers. It is the ignorance of the democracy we have to fear, the ignorance that places power in the hands of men who do not know how to use it, as in the case of the coal miners, or in the hands of those who use it for their own segregated purposes as in the case of the Vatican. "America," says this authority, "can no longer dwell safely in the world without allies. Our own industrial power, though the greatest in the world, is not great enough to withstand the strongest group of powers that might be arrayed against us, or even the strongest pair of them. We are the most nearly secure nation in the world but not secure enought to ignore power politics." And, also: "the European equilibrium is smashed for good. It was illusory during the twenties, though Britain failed to recognize the fact. France is inherently too weak, and the rest of Europe too subdivided to offset Germany." The cardinal goal of these consultants is "a lasting peace for Europe in which the people are prosperous and individuals are free." The minimum conditions for Europe as a whole are three: "A common military security, so that no one nation can menace its neighbors; a common recognition of human and individual rights; a common (though not a uniform) economical life." The infinite detail involved in all this is not forgotten in the FORTUNE survey, but we must leave that for the reader's study. The War itself has gone most favorably for the Allies. The collapse of the German and Italian troops in Tunisia has been taken by many as a token of what will occur in Germany when the expected invasion actually and successfully has been carried out. Many think that the terrific bombing of Germany from the skies is sufficient to destroy the morale of the nation which is not alien to the sentiment that he who fights and runs away, may live to fight another day. But America, Russia, China, Britain, are all determined that there shall be no "other day." The whole world has been wonderfully impressed by Joseph Stalin's announcement of the dissolution of the Comintern. It accepted the assurance with the same relief the child hears that there is no bogey-man. Russia has turned aside all assaults of the great German forces, 735,000 in the south; 1,500,000 in the centre; and 235,000 in the Leningrad area. Japan has had a succession of disasters in her conflicts with China and the U.S. The greatest defeat of the war was inflicted on a Japanese army that attempted to capture China's rice bowl, the province which largely feeds the nation. Italy is in a miserable state, hoping that the Vatican can extricate them from the clutches of the conquerors who demand absolute surrender. There can be no weakening of that demand. Mercy is not for the murderers but for their wretched victims.
Owing to pressure of outside engagements Mr. W. Frank Sutherland has been obliged to discontinue his articles in this magazine, but hopes to resume when the pressure relaxes.
KING ARTHUR'S ROUND TABLE AND THE GRAIL
"THE MYSTERY of BRITAIN"
King Arthur's Round Table was not just a piece of furniture as might be supposed but something vastly more worthy upon which to found a Knightly Order; his table was the Round Table of the Stars, the Zodiac.
Here is a diagram of a carved model, the original design was found laid out on the ground near Glastonbury, and is 30 miles in circumference, the earth works which form it were constructed by the Early Bronze Age inhabitants thought to be of Chaldean origin; it constitutes a sculptural relief of unequalled magnitude.
The outlines of the figures here
[[Photo here: Photograph of Plaque modelled by Mrs. K.E. Maltwood representing artistically the Somerset Zodiac, ten miles in diameter, as seen from the air in the greens of springtime.]]
shown have been traced from the map of the districts where the giant effigies lie; it is upon a 6 ins. to 1 mile Ordnance Survey Map that the model is placed. The Creatures represent the Zodiacal Star Constellations of 5000 years ago and as we shall see our present Solar Calendar is founded upon this design.
The figures towards the North represent the Winter months - The Scorpion, Archer, Goat, Water-Carrier and Fishes.
Opposite are the Summer months - The young Ram, Bull, Twins, Lion and Virgin.
If the modern Planisphere be placed upon a reproduction of this map the same size, it will be found that the stars of the corresponding constellations fall into their own effigies. Thus the skill of this circular composition, which was made to fit the stars round the Dome of the Sky, partly lies in its contraction towards the central Point, or Zenith of the Celestial Sphere, from which the twelve Zodiacal divisions radiate.
SIGNS AND SECRETS - I
OF KING ARTHUR'S ROUND TABLE OF THE ZODIAC "THE WONDERFUL NATURAL PHENOMENA OF BRITAIN."
The Air Sign AQUARIUS
King Arthur's remains Were said to have been buried in a tomb richly carved with lions and placed in the Choir of Glastonbury Abbey in front of the High Altar, but about 1130 A.D. the Norman monks William of Malmesbury and John of Glaston saw the two Pyramids in the Abbey precincts between which he lay originally.
Now the Abbey grounds lie directly under the central line of the Ecliptic or Path of the Sun in Somerset's Temple of the Stars, the date that corresponds on the modern Planisphere being March 17th or the end of the Babylonian year, and the ancient Roman year also commenced in March.
This date, strange to say, is St. Patrick's day, he died A.D. 472, and William of Malmesbury tells us - "when the Old Church was burned his body was gathered into a Pyramid, beside the Altar towards the South which out of veneration for the Saint was afterwards nobly clothed in gold and silver".
But why another Pyramid? for the Pyramid tomb was a Solar symbol of the highest sacredness as at Heliopolis "a symbol upon which, from the day when he created the gods, the Sun-god was accustomed to manifest himself in the form of the Phoenix", as on the polished apex of the Dahshur pyramid we still see a winged sun disk surmounting a pair of eyes which face east.
These Glastonbury Abbey Pyramids were undoubtedly carrying on the tradition of the great earthwork pyramid of the Isle of Avalon, which if seen from the hills of the surrounding neighborhood, is breath-taking in its appeal to the imagination, as it rears itself out of the Hyperborean mists of the Sea Moors and takes the form of the effigy Phoenix, the manifestation of the Sun-god.
Thus Glaston Tor, crowned by St. Michael's tower on the High Altar of the Sun-god, really stands for King Arthur's grave. The first monks knew the secret of his passing and the exact date on the old Temple Calendar as demonstrated by the two pyramids, one 28 ft. high and the other 26 ft. in height still marking the spot in 1130 A.D.
So we can now understand the "sage high Merlin" when he said "that Arthur should yet come to help the English for the British believe yet that he is alive, and dwelling in Avalun, and the British ever yet expect when Arthur shall return".
The last words of Tennyson's 'Pass-ing of Arthur' are - "And the new sun rose bringing the new year".
INTRODUCTION TO "SERAPHITA"
By George Frederic Parsons
(Continued from Page 73)
Brief reference has been made already to a striking peculiarity in the portrait of Seraphita, - the fact, namely, that to Minna she conveys the impression of masculinity and to Wilfrid that of womanhood. So strange a confusion of sex, or perhaps it would be more exact to say so strange a dualism, certainly required more explanation than Balzac has seen fit to offer; and as the ideas involved relate to very ancient and recondite doctrines, it is necessary to treat the subject somewhat fully. Seraphita is intended to typify the nearest approach to physical and psychical perfection possible under the limitations of human existence. The whole narrative of her birth and training indicates this. Her parents are devout followers of Swedenborg, to whom they are related. There is much more of mystical spirituality than of material relations about their union and married life. In fact, the chief aim and end of both their lives seems to have been the securing of the proper conditions for the generation of a being who should be so pure and so in harmony with celestial things from her birth as to be capable of accomplishing in one incarnation the transition from the mortal to the divine. Seraphita as here represented offers curious analogies with Oriental theosophy. One might say that in Eastern terminology she was born to Arhatship; and that though for her, as for all merely human beings, temptation and trial were unavoidable, her triumph was no less certain than that which Gotama Buddha attained to as the culmination of his vigil under the Bodhi tree. But the Northern ideal of human perfection embraced some conceptions which were less congenial to the Oriental intellect.
It is one of the central merits of Christianity that it did much to recover for Woman the position too long denied her in the psychical scheme. Buddha indeed went far beyond his Asiatic predecessors in this direction. He admitted women to all the spiritual gains open to men, with one exception. No woman could be a Buddha, according to him, though any woman might elevate herself to Arhatship. Christianity raised woman to the highest celestial dignities, and if in process of time superstition and bigotry warped and travestied the original pure symbolism and the early doctrines of the creed, much solid good remained from the mere familiarizing of men's minds with the higher view of womanly excellences and capacities.
In the esoteric creeds of many peoples, but chiefly those of European habitat, the place of Woman has for ages been, not merely among the highest, but literally the highest. She symbolized the Soul in the beautiful myth of Psyche. She was the spiritual element in humanity, lacking union with which mankind must be chained forever to the material, and waste his energies in struggles and labors which, even when most successful, only carried him farther from the true purpose of life, and rendered emancipation from carnal conditions more tedious and difficult. Something of this venerable doctrine may be gathered from the following citations, which occur in that beautifully written but mystical work called "The Perfect Way." Speaking of the "substance of existence," the authors say: "As Living Substance, God is One. As Life and Substance, God is Twain. HE is the Life, and SIZE is the Substance. And to speak of Her is to speak of Woman in her supremest mode. She is not 'Nature;' Nature is the manifestation of the qualities and properties with which, under suffusion of the Life and Spirits of God, Substance is endowed. She is not Matter, but is the potential
essence of Matter. She is not Space, but is the within of Space, its fourth and original dimension, that from which all proceed, the containing element of Deity, and of which Space is the manifestation. As original Substance, the substance of all other substance, She underlies that whereof all things are made; and, like life and mind, is interior, mystical, spiritual, and discernible only when manifested in operation." The elucidation of the feminine principle is carried much further, and the whole passage will repay study, for it throws new light upon the mythologies and occult systems of many ages and peoples, and tends to exhibit a continuity of thought and a unity of conception regarding fundamentals, such as few would suspect who examine these questions hastily or without due preparation. The following passage relates to the concrete question in hand more directly: "As on the plane physical, man is not Man, but only Boy, rude, forward, and solicitous only to exert and exhibit his strength, until the time comes for him to recognize, appreciate, and appropriate Her as the woman; so on the plane spiritual, man is not Man, but only Materialist, having all the deficiencies, intellectual and moral, the term implies, until the time comes for him to recognize, appreciate, and appropriate Her as the Soul, and counting Her as his better half, to renounce his own exclusively centrifugal impulsions, and yield to her centripetal attractions. Doing this with all his heart, he finds that she makes him in the highest sense, Man. For, adding to his intellect Her intuition, she endows him with that true manhood, the manhood of Mind. Thus, by Her aid obtaining cognition of substance, and from the phenomenal fact ascending to the essential idea, he weds understanding to knowledge, and attains to certitude of truth, completing thereby the system of his thought."
In rejecting, as the present age has virtually done, the soul and her intuition, "man excludes from the system of his humanity the very idea of woman, and renounces his proper manhood." This it is which determines the wholly materialistic bent of modern physical science, and the coarse, callous, and corrupt tendencies which, as the century declines to its close, appear to characterize the prevailing civilization more strongly, and to emphasize with greater distinctness even the faintest reactionary movements and impulses. Balzac, in drawing Seraphita, was wholly true to the best received occult doctrine in endowing her with duality of sexual attributes, and the subtlety of his delineation is especially exhibited in the dominance of her womanly side. For though Minna is apparently misled by the masculine vigor and the self-contained resolution of her companion, the reader is permitted to see clearly enough that the impression which Seraphita produces upon Wilfrid is not only by far the stronger but by far the most natural; and this impression is that which the highest type of womanhood can alone create. But there is another symbol in this phase of Seraphita's nature. For it is held that in truth and fact the dualism exaggerated for the sake of effect in her case is inherent in all human beings; that, to quote the same work once more, "whatever the sex of the person, physically, each individual is a dualism, consisting of exterior and interior, manifested personality and essential individuality, body and soul, which are to each other masculine and feminine, man and woman; he the without, she the within. And all that the woman, on the planes physical and social is to the man, that she is also on the planes intellectual and spiritual. For, as Soul and Intuition of Spirit, she withdraws him, physically and mentally, from dissipation and perdition in the outer and material; and by centralizing and substantializing him redeems and
crowns him, - from a phantom converting him into an entity, from a mortal into an immortal, from a man into a god." For, without Love, Force can work only evil. It is the union of these two from which springs true progress, - the progress which overlooks the material and plants discovering feet in the permanent region of the spiritual. Woman is the symbol and the vehicle of the Divine Life. She is the one stable principle of human evolution, - the principle without which man's development would be in the line of decomposition instead of toward a higher vitality; his restless energies would wear themselves away in making the conditions of his existence more and more impossible of endurance. And this is the doctrine of all Hermetic Scriptures, including the Book of Genesis.
It is to be observed that Balzac does not follow Swedenborg closely here. He goes rather to the sources of esoteric doctrine from which all students of occultism, from the earliest recorded times, have drawn their principles and the guiding outlines of their schemes of thought. It is also deserving of notice that however the personal element may and does alter and not infrequently disguise or pervert the details of such teachings, there is in the general form and character of them a certain harmony and close affinity which indicate community of origin; and as in the genesis of language philologists argue from root likenesses affiliation of several tongues which time has separated widely, with one mother tongue lost perhaps in the mists of antiquity, so from these indications of a common focus of knowledge may be inferred the pre-existence of such a spring and source; and not less rationally may be assumed in it a purity and approximation to absolute truth superior to the representations which have descended through defective vehicles, exposed to all the sophisticating influence of time and ignorance and materialism. Swedenborg was an agent in some respects peculiarly susceptible to these distorting influences. It does not appear that he at any time rose to the height of spiritual perception attained in the thoughts last quoted. Yet he recognized somewhat of the importance of the Woman-head in spiritual existence, and though he did not escape from the narrow and material views of Woman common to his age, he brought from his visions a reflection of the truth too exalted to be understood by his contemporaries. "Man," he says in one place, "is born an understanding, and woman a love." And speaking again of marriage he says: "The wife cannot enter into the proper duties of the man; nor the man, on the other hand, into the proper duties of the wife; because they differ, as wisdom and its love, or thought and its affection, or understanding and its will. In the proper duties of men the understanding, thought, and wisdom act the chief part; but in the proper duties of wives the will, affection, and love act the chief part." He recognizes also the necessity of harmonious conjunctions between the two natures to make the perfect man; but he does not realize the superior importance, the higher spirituality, of the woman's nature. Here Balzac's knowledge, intuitive or acquired, surpasses that of the teacher whose doctrine he has undertaken to illustrate, and in his conception of Seraphita he rises to the level of the loftiest mystical doctrine to which human faculty has ever attained.
Goethe, like Balzac, penetrated to the heart of the giant problem in the last scene of the second part of "Faust." His Ewig-Weibliche is the divine element which woman both embodies and typifies, and to the purifying and stimulating emanations from which Man is indebted for whatever degree of enfranchisement from the clogging embraces of materialism he is enabled to accomp-
lish. This is the force which zicht uns hinan, which lifts us toward higher spheres and inspires us with nobler aims; which on the physical plane keeps before our dull and earth-drawn eyes constant examples of self-sacrifice, altruism, patience, compassion, and love stronger than death; which is most effective in subduing and extirpating the sordid animal tendencies and inclinations from our nature, and in substituting impulses and aspirations which may give us foothold in the path that leads toward a life better worth living. In the figure of Seraphita we contemplate the final efflorescence of such endeavor, the culminating product of a long chain of incarnations, during which the dominant impulse has been uniformly spiritual, and through which the carnal elements have been gradually subdued until at length they suffice only to give the mortal form coherency, and to supply the physical means of that inevitable agony of temptation which is the price of translation to the Divine, exacted equally from all who bear the conditions of earthly life, under whatever name they may be known. For when the day of Deliverance is about to dawn, the hosts of Mara assemble, or Satan calls his legions together, and the supreme test of the aspirant is undergone. Not for naught did the devisers of the mysteries of Eleusis subject the neophyte to a series of ordeals requiring mental and physical resolution and intrepidity. These ordeals symbolized the difficulties and pains which must be endured by all who seek to pass directly from the natural to the celestial.
When - to employ for a moment the terminology of Schopenhauer - the mortal resolves upon exercising "the denial of the will to live," all the forces of life marshal themselves in battle array against him. The Temptation, which figures in so many religions, is the exoteric symbol of this inevitable conflict. Nature, which knows only the conditioned, revolts in every fibre against the unconditioned. The Mephistopheles of the material world, she cannot suffer any of her children to escape her, and when she perceives that they are bent upon renunciation she summons her Lemures to guard all the outlets and prevent the flight of the soul to higher spheres. Nor is purification, innocence, inherited elevation of spirit, preparedness for the taking on of more lofty conditions, any defence against these attacks. On the contrary, the greater the refinement the greater the sensibility. So the red Indian, bound to the stake, endures with stolidity torture which would destroy life in the highly strung nervous system of a civilized man. When Sir Robert Peel received the injuries from which he died, so acute was his sensitiveness that he could not tolerate the gentlest surgical examination, even the pressure of the bandages occasioning him so much pain that it was found necessary to remove them. It is true that great mental excitement may so completely dominate pain as to render those injured insensible to it. Thus in battle men desperately wounded will go on fighting sometimes until loss of blood causes them to faint. So also strong spiritual excitement may operate as an anaesthetic, as is shown in the case of martyrs who, while their bodies were burning, are reported to have spoken with all the indications of religious rapture or ecstasy. It is known that in the hypnotic state complete physical insensibility may be induced, so that needles or knives can be plunged deep into the tissues without causing the least sensation. Similar phenomena have been observed in many phases of the mysterious and Protean conditions called hysterical. Thus the Convulsionnaires of St. Medard actually found satisfaction in being beaten with the utmost violence by strong men, and suffered themselves to be struck with heavy iron bars, experiencing no pain
or injury from assaults which were quite severe enough to have killed persons in the normal state.
But none of these instances affect the fact that as a rule sensibility increases with the gradual predominance of the nervous system, which is one of the most marked concomitants of civilization. There is indeed one consideration which at first sight may appear not to be in accord with this theory. It has long been observed that women commonly bear pain better than men; and it is perhaps generally supposed that the sensibility of women is greater than that of men. Of course no conclusion of any value on such a point can be established in the absence of trustworthy data, and statistics here are unattainable. While, however, it may be admitted, as a deduction from general experience, that women are usually more patient under pain than men are, it is by no means so certain that their sensibility is greater than men's, nor should it be too hastily assumed that it is even equal to the latter. Reasoning from analogy it might be supposed that the capacity of women to bear pain would be greater than that of men, because the performance of their natural functions requires them to bear more pain, and Nature always makes provision for special requirements of the kind. Endurance may be confounded with insensitiveness, moreover, and this renders it more difficult to arrive at the actual state of the case. Woman has been disciplined by centuries of servitude and oppression to a patience which man has not, save in certain subject races, learned to exhibit. The American Indian, trained from infancy to conceal his feelings, and especially to repress all signs of suffering, could face torture with firmness. The modern city-bred man undoubtedly dreads the dentist's chair more, and perhaps actually suffers more in it, than did the savage in the hands of his enemies. Women, however, without any preparation but that of heredity, endure prolonged and poignant suffering, and often, if not always, with a composure which men at least are prone to impute to inferior sensitiveness. This inferiority, if indeed it exists, is merely physical, for there can be no doubt as to the superior spiritual sensibility of women; and there is room for considerable hesitation regarding the other branch of the subject.
(To Be Continued)
THE OCCULT IN LITERATURE AND DRAMA
Richard Wagner in his prose works tells of his conception of the theatre "as an ideal relation of theatre and the people, along the lines of the theatre of Ancient Greece, where its doors were thrown open only on special feast days, where Art was coupled with the celebration of a religious rite, in which the most illustrious members of the State themselves took part, as poets and performers, to appear like priests before the assembled populace of field and city, a populace filled with high awaitings, from the sublimeness of the work to be set out before it and with an understanding of the deepest meaning contained therein".
It is a far cry from such a conception to our modern stage or film theatre. Modern dramas generally bear little resemblance to the Greek tragedy Wagner had in mind, which was much more than a play, being a religious experience and an exposition of the mysteries. The people go to the theatre today, not in order to be reminded of their philosophy of life or to establish some kind of communion with their gods, but to escape boredom or to get a "kick" out of the latest thriller. For the Greeks, dramatic festivals were "solemn and rare" whereas for us they are an almost daily stimulant, generally nothing more than a bath of emotional soapsuds.
Really good plays calling attention to the old truths presented in a new way, truths which are of the gravest significance to humanity, have little chance of production or survival, because they are not money makers and do not constitute good box office. For the same reason the old mystery plays are seldom, if ever, revived.
Who, then, are the custodians of this vital force in the presentation of the Eternal Verities? Where is the repository of such works which have been dedicated to Man's profoundest beliefs and emotions, and who will keep them alive until the day comes, when the standard in our theatre is sufficiently high for their presentation, and purely symbolic work not an unknown quantity to the people?
Perhaps no organization has greater access to the Occult in drama and literature than The Theosophical Society. The Society's libraries contain much of the great wisdom-religion literature, and its message is available for presentation at any time. It is surprising that it is not made greater use of for lecture periods and study groups. It is even more surprising to find among Theosophic students, some who are indifferent to the full life of the mind and the spirit, who shrug their shoulders at any mention of color, secular literature painting, music and the drama, particularly when it is proposed that these constitute a medium of awakening the great passive and visionless public, living a thin, sterile, mechanical sort of existence, lonely at heart and not sustained by any vision of the good life.
Anyone who has studied the reactions of a visitor on the occasion of his first visit to a Theosophic lodge, watched the faces of the people at our lectures, must have wondered if we were giving them anything to take away and ponder. Does the visitor sense life beneath our often amateur job of presenting philosophic ideas and beliefs, or does it all seem so much dead wood lacking color and vitality without a stir of life anywhere? On his subsequent visits, does he find a consistent lucidity in our subject matter or a confusion of ideas? Are we still more prone to make statements, rather than ask questions, and in our sometimes over-simplification of the mystery and wonder of life, does he conclude we are merely text book thinkers and have a text book rather than a "testament of beauty"?
Students of Theosophy have access to "the world of the wondrous" in all phases of the Arts, but at times seem to desire its exclusion, - to fear that in entering into it they might be eternally thrust back on the torments and contradictions of life which they feel they have overcome. Such an attitude indicates but an illusion. These things are precious and vital to us, among other reasons because they make it possible for us to know, if only imperfectly and for a little while, what it actually feels like to think sublimely and feel nobly.
A grand adventure awaits those who are prepared to present these age-old truths through the vital medium of dramatic presentation using music, color, individual readings, etc. The Arts can be a good means to a good end, and are a legitimate medium of widening consciousness and imparting to the flow of the emotions a desirable direction.
This is not, of course, a new thing in Theosophic circles; its power of vitalizing has been used many times before, and will be used again and again, but the present moment seems particularly opportune, when people are hungry for music and a colorful presentation of ideas. Music, even through the medium of a good recording set can be used to give our people the opportunity of entering into the thought forms and feelings of the composers of insight, serving to focus the mind's attention, to feel in harmony with and thus share an emotional experience. Such music can be
an invaluable aid to dramatic presentation.
During the past season one of the Toronto lodges included in their program presentations along these lines which were received enthusiastically and created considerable interest in interpretation and discussion. The presentations were supplemented by a mid-week study group which brought together a creative group of members and friends, to deal with the Occult in Literature and Drama. The main idea of the group was to allow more people to actively participate in the presentations, and to make an individual contribution to the program, and the association has proved an intensely interesting experience.
For the benefit of any Lodge desirous of making use of such an opportunity, the following constitutes material already found practical and under consideration of next season
"The Grail Traditions".
"The Dream of Ravan" and "The Ramayana".
"Prometheus Bound" by James Morgan Pryse.
"The Adorers. of Dionysos" by James Morgan Pryse.
"The Sightless", by Maeterlink.
"Peer Gynt" by Ibsen.
"Ring of the Nibelung" - Richard Wagner
"Parsifal" - Richard Wagner
"Tristan & Isolde" - Richard Wagner
"Pan and the Young Shepherd" by Maurice Hewlett.
"The Plays of Tagore".
"The Tempest" by Shakespeare.
Tami's "Salaman and Absal".
Huxley's "Grey Eminence".
Masefield's "Everlasting Mercy".
By the addition of music in providing a background, the appeal of many of these suggestions can be heightened and provides a stimulus to the ingenuity of those responsible for the presentations.
- J.W. Sutton
A DIAMOND JUBILEE
An interesting celebration has recently taken place in Toronto when Dr. John Benjamin Cullen and Dr. Augusta Stowe Gullen celebrated the 60th anniversary of their marriage on May 23, 1883 in the Metropolitan Church, Toronto. It coincided also with the 60th year since their graduation in medicine. Dr. J.B. obtained his degree from Trinity College in 1883, and Dr. Augusta graduated from Victoria University, the first woman to do so in Canada. Her mother, Dr. Emily Stowe, who graduated in medicine in the United States, was the first woman to practise medicine in Canada. Dr. Emily Stowe and Dr. Augusta Stowe Gullen became Charter members of the Toronto Theosophical Society in 1891, but retired after a few years. Mrs. Day Macpherson, Mr. Algernon Blackwood, the novelist, and Mr. Albert E.S. Smythe were the other Charter members. Mr. Smythe was the first president, Dr. Cullen, the first vice-president, and Mr. Blackwood the first secretary.
One of the privileges of living in the Twentieth century is the opportunity of allying oneself with the Theosophical Movement originated by the Elder Brothers of the Race, and of making a conscious link, however slender, with them. Join any Theosophical Society which maintains the tradition of the Masters of Wisdom and study their Secret Doctrine. You can strengthen the link you make by doing service, by strong search, by questions, and by humility. We should be able to build the future on foundations of Wisdom, Love and Justice.
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.
Maud E. Crafter, 57 Sherwood Avenue, Toronto, Ont.
Dudley W. Barr, 18 Rowandwood Avenue, Toronto, Ont.
Felix A. Belcher, 250 N. Lisgar St., Toronto, Ont.
Edw. L. Thomson, 163 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.
To whom all communications should be addressed.
Printed by the Griffin & Richmond Printing Co., Ltd., 29 Rebecca Street, Hamilton, Ontario
It should be the practice of loyal members of the Society to pay their dues promptly at the beginning of the financial year, July 1st. We have pointed out the excellent plan adopted by the Montreal Lodge for years past of collecting $5 from each member on January 1st of which half is retained by the Lodge and the other half reserved till July when the full dues of the members which by that time are all paid up, are remitted to the General Secretary. When the local treasurers leave collections till the Fall they are liable to be neglected till Christmas, and by that time many members appear to grow apathetic about it, or find their holiday expenditures have exhausted their charitable sentiments, with the result of lapse of membership. We have been in the habit of giving these dilatory members three months' grace with their magazines but cannot do this beyond September. It would save a great deal of extra labor if payments were made on time. Is it necessary to remind our members that no salaries are paid in our Canadian Society? They can greatly assist in this gratuitous labor by prompt payments.
A correspondent wishes to know the name of the author of The High Romance, mentioned in a recent article. It is Michael Williams.
A soldier in England asks if we can get him a copy of Talbot Mundy's book OM. It is out of print. Can any reader oblige? We could use several copies if friends were kind enough to send them in.
The Theosophist for February contains an article on "Ourselves and Nature" by Hugh Shearman, described as "Young Theosophist of Ireland." Can he be any relative of Rev. J.N. Shearman, rector at one time of St. Matthew's Church, Belfast, and author of The Natural Theology of Evolution, a book considerably ahead of its time and habitat?
The current Federation Quarterly says editorially: "Now, one glance at Brotherhood and it becomes plain that a rich and half empty land like Canada just has to open its doors. Public opinion must be formed in that direction by us, as far as we can. Otherwise we are like wealthy parents refusing to have children or foster children because of the bother. Not only Brotherhood but Karma and Dharma and all the rest stack up against us. Thus, by applying our principles, our course becomes clear and the world gets the benefit."
The death occurred on Tuesday, May 18 at Halcyon, California, of Nora Kathleen Jackson, a former member of Toronto T.S. Miss Jackson was the daugh-
ter of the late Maunsell Bowers Jackson, K.C., of Drumsnab. She had been at one time a diligent worker for Theosophy in Toronto. She became interested in work for India during the last Great War and eventually moved to California and settled at Halcyon, where the work of The Temple is centred. On a recent visit to Toronto she purchased a complete set of the bound volumes of The Canadian Theosophist.
A peculiar notion is spreading in the Theosophical Society that the principle of Universal Brotherhood includes toleration of all and any kind of evil and folly and wickedness. Our progress in life teaches us the difference between good and evil. Our mental development enables us to distinguish between right and wrong. The faculty of intuition enables one to detect truth from falsehood. If we fail to use these powers as they develop they may be blunted or hindered or even lost altogether, atrophied. This result may be observed in too many cases.
The Path, of Sydney, Australia, reprints in its January-March issue, an article on "The Secret Doctrine" from our volume IX, signed W.M.W. This was the signature of the late William Mulliss, who died about ten years ago. He never joined the Theosophical Society, but was vastly interested in its literature, of which he made a magnificent collection, intending, he told me, to leave it to one of the public libraries. He died unexpectedly, making no disposition of his library, which, instead of becoming a lasting memorial of his name, was scattered to the four corners of the earth.
On April 30 there died at 82, Professor Jens Otto Harry Jespersen, after an operation in the hospital at Roskilde, Denmark. "In this handsome Danish giant of scholarship, English grammar lost its greatest living historian, Europe an outstanding humanist." For its articles on Language, Philology, Grammar, the Encyclopedia Britannica turned to Jespersen. His greatest work, Modern English Grammar, in four volumes, was published 1909-1931. As a Social-Democrat, he saw traces of the democratic spirit in the very bones and muscles of English speech. It is well to remember that English scholars are not necessarily born in England. But wherever born, they love pure English.
Years ago when I was wondering who was The Dreamer, author of the studies on The Bhagavad Gita, some one wrote me or told me, it is so long ago, I forget which, that The Dreamer was Upendranath Basu. Going through The Theosophical Year Book, 1938, looking for an address, I came across the following note which I hasten to make public, as many must have been misled on the matter. "Rajendra Lal Mukerjee: ('The Dreamer') M.A., B.L., b.'69, Calcutta; F.T.S. '93; law officer Calcutta Municipality; P: Studies in the Bhagavad Gita: The Yoga of Discrimination, The Yoga of Action and Occultism; The Path of Initiation; The Life Waves; On the Threshold, etc.; died '36."
After making every allowance for the atmospheric influence of India at present, we are a little surprised at The Aryan Path placing Hitler's declaration: "What is necessary is that we hold what we have," on the same basis as Churchill's "We mean to hold our own." Says our contemporary: "Such an attitude, irrespective of the party which evinces it, spells danger for the world after the war." And again: "In the world's eyes British prestige has been lowered . . . .by failure to uphold the ideals of freedom for all and the unification of the whole world into a real federation." Does the news of the world not penetrate to Bombay? Have the
Four Freedoms been broadcast in vain? Have the United States, Russia, China and Britain pledged themselves to destroy Naziism and Fascism with wanton words and idle bloodshed? Is more attention paid to Axis propaganda in India than to the facts of the war?
The Theosophical Forum for May and June contain the first two of three articles on "Evolution into the Human Kingdom" by the late G. de Purucker. In the June instalment the progress of the monads on and from the moon-chain is dealt with. Theoretically, it is stated, the monads can rise without help from the kingdoms above into those higher kingdoms, if they take time enough for the process. But this would take six or seven solar manvantaras, billions of years, merely to pass from one kingdom to the next one. "But the important thing is that Nature is not working that way. Her law is that all lives for all, which means that every entity, wittingly or unwittingly, helps every other entity. It means that every superior kingdom is not only a guide to the kingdom next below itself, but an enormous attraction upwards to itself upon the lower kingdom." In the May issue our article on "What Theosophy Is" has been considerately reprinted by our contemporary.
In a review of Carey McWilliams' Brothers Under the Skin, TIME for May 24 sums up his treatment of minorities in population and of the Red Man, reports that among the 17,000,000 minority peoples in the U.S. the Indians number 394,280, increasing at the rate of 1% per year as compared with 0.7% for the whole population. Can this mean that previously incarnated egoes in Red Man bodies prefer such bodies, or that they are preferred by increasingly larger groups to white enfleshments? "Fear and anxiety," writes McWilliams, "led even the most religious Puritans to feel no compunction when they saw Indian women being clubbed to death and Indian babies being dashed against trees." It was only in 1924 that Indians were at last accepted as citizens. More recently serious efforts have been made to restore their heritage by adding to and protecting their holdings, supplying them with capital, fostering their arts and crafts, etc. The negro problem continues to impeach U.S. civilization.
North of Chicago on Lake Michigan, at Wilmette, Illinois, stands the immense new Temple of Worship of the million or more Bahai followers of The Bab and his successors. Bahaists have headquarters at Haifa, but this near Chicago centre is expected to attract multitudes to its portals, for a Temple made with hands, whatever the prophets may say, draws more crowds than one eternal in the heavens. This one sits in a nine-acre park on nine concrete piers sunk ninety feet below the water level in Lake Michigan mud. Nine is the magic number in the Bahai faith, and there are nine sides to the double encasements surrounding its vast doma, the whole recalling in some respects the Goetheanum erected by the Rudolph Steinerites in Switzerland. In fact most of these new religious temples run to domes. I prefer Salisbury Cathedral myself for style, but anything that promotes the ideas of Karma and Reincarnation will commend itself to the Wise.
In The Link, for February-March, in the report of the South African Convention, it is reported that Miss Clara Codd explained that the World Fund was first thought of by Mrs. Ransom and Mr. Peter Freeman who thought that Dr. Arundale should have a settled income. Mrs. Besant had a "travelling Fund" given to her by wealthy members. Her personal expenses were paid from royalties on her books. Dr. Arundale does not have so much income from
royalties, and Mrs. Ransom thought he should have an income of L1000 ($5000) a year. She figured out that if every member of the Society gave for three year, L1 ($5) a year that would make a Fund of L100,000 ($500,000) to be invested. The money from this invested fund would not only pay Dr. Arundale's expenses, but also pension old workers, pay the travelling expenses of good lecturers to little sections with slender resources, etc. It had been decided to suspend the gathering in of the Fund during this war. End quote. What is to be thought of THE Society as an eleemosynary institution?
Mrs. Leoline L. Wright has an excellent article on "The Evidence for Reincarnation" in the May Theosophical Forum. People do not want proof of things in which they are not interested. Another class accept the idea as they accept the existence of New Zealand. They have never been there but take it as a matter of common knowledge. Mrs. Wright would abandon the attempt to prove our doctrines. "For the immediate satisfaction of the casual enquirer it cannot be done . . . . students in a class of textbook chemistry accept their teacher's statement that a molecule of water consists of two atoms of hydrogen and one of oxygen. Some of the members of that class, like some Theosophists, expect later to go into the laboratory and demonstrate for themselves the teachings, . . . but the general public has not yet looked into the matter even so far as to lead them to accept as unimpeachable the findings of our spiritual Teachers. All we can do, then, is to present them with the evidence." The Forum compliments us by copying an article from our September issue.
The Indian Convention and the International Convention so-called were held in Benares in December, and Dr. Arundale, reporting what he said in his closing talk, declared: "I want to stress the note of the Elder Brethren and of Their marvellous concern with the Theosophical Society and with the spread of Theosophy." And he adds: "Whether or not some of us here know of the existence of the Masters, the Elder Brethren, the Rishis, or at least believe in Their existence, there are always some who are left in the Society who do know Them face to face." It is well to note in this connection that William Q. Judge was put on trial for saying less than that, and for making a dogma of the existence of the Masters. "Therefore," continues Dr. Arundale, who has not been tried yet, "is it all the more wonderful that it should have been said by one of the Elder Brethren that where two or three are gathered together in the name of a great Teacher there is He in their midst." This being so; it is still more wonderful that Dr. Arundale should continue to repudiate the claims of other Societies who are even more loyal to the Masters and Their Messenger, Madame Blavatsky, than THE Society over which Dr. Arundale holds office. This "isolationism" on his part is unworthy of an ecumenical movement, but he cannot get it out of his head that he is in an unique job and even insists that Theosophy is to be the cornerstone of The World Religion, though the Masters sensibly put it in the plural, knowing that as long as there would be a rainbow men would vary in their beliefs, and that knowledge alone would abolish all formal "religion" with its ornaments and garb, its crosses and phylacteries, its ritual and ceremonial. These priestly toys are dear to Dr. Arundale as to all immature souls, but, he will progress with time.
BOOKS ON THEOSOPHICAL SUBJECTS, which have passed the tests of time and use Supplied on request. Forty years, experience at your service. Let me know your wishes.
N.W.J. HAYDON, 564 PAPE AVE., TORONTO
AMONG THE LODGES
Mr. N.W.J. Haydon writes: I regret to report that the fight against asthma, which our highly esteemed member, Wm. King, has carried on for nearly two years, was ended by his death last Friday, May 14, in his 60th year. He was Chairman of our Property Committee for some years previous to his enforced stay in hospital for some months, last year, and has always been faithful in his attendance at our Sunday meetings and generous in his financial support of our work. The funeral was conducted Monday afternoon, May 17, by a Presbyterian minister, and I regret that his relatives gave no consideration to his interest in Theosophy in arranging the service, although I reminded his daughter thereof; he had been an active member of my East End Class, which had often met at his home. The T.S. was represented at the service and at the grave by numerous members, of whom I was allowed to be one of the bearers.
Hamilton Lodge celebrated White Lotus Day on Sunday evening; May 9, with the usual readings and addresses from Mr. N.W.J. Haydon of Toronto, and Mr. Cecil Williams. Mr. Haydon, after some reminiscences of early days of the Hamilton Lodge, spoke on the life of Krishna, basing his remarks on the introduction by Charles Johnston to his translation of the Bhagavad Gita, which Mr. Haydon preferred to any other. He recommended a study of the introduction to those who wished to understand the book. Mr. Williams spoke on The Secret Doctrine, and has been kind enough to furnish us with a synopsis of his talk, which appears elsewhere in this issue.
On Sunday evening, May 23, Mr. Walter Hick gave an interesting address on the life and work of Louis Claude St. Martin, at the close of which he made the startling announcement that it was the last in his series of talks on Great Theosophists, and the last he expected to give in Hamilton as he was going to leave the city in about three weeks and to return to the United States for his permanent residence. He came, he said, to Canada 28 years ago and he was able to say that the greatest thing he had found there was Theosophy. He had read Mr. Smythe's articles in The Sunday World and in these "Crusts and Crumbs" he found mention of The Secret Doctrine. He knew at once this was the book he wanted. He came to the Hamilton Society and borrowed Katherine Hillard's Abridgment and read it through. He got out of it an understanding of Karma and Reincarnation. After returning the book he spent two years thinking it over, and then he joined the Society. From lectures by Mr. Smythe and Mr. Mitchell he had been helped to other studies and had made many friends among the members. He was now going away without any definite work in view but expected to stay with his elder brother for a little while. Mr. Hick is a graduate of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and was employed in expert work in one of the big Hamilton factories. Miss Carr paid tribute to Mr. Hick's value to the Hamilton Lodge in his lectures and in his help to the Lodge with his wise counsel and the good sense of his advice. Mr. Smythe also spoke in recognition of his services and his fine helpful spirit in the work of the Theosophical Movement. Mr. Hick has served as president of the Hamilton Lodge for several years, and was also elected for some years on the Canadian General Executive.
Following the acquisition of a record-reproducing set early in the season, Toronto Lodge has devoted one Sunday each month to a musical presentation. The innovation has been enthusiastically received by members and friends and has
resulted in several very interesting offerings. In February Mr. H. Huxtable spoke on the occult significance of "Peer Gynt", assisted in the readings from the drama by Mr. J.W. Sutton, the music from the Greig Suite proving a delightful background to the presentation. The presentation of Aeschylus' "Prometheus Bound", arranged by Mr. J.W. Sutton, from James M. Pryse's version of the play with a musical background of Scriabin's "Prometheus" and the "Poems of Fire and Ecstacy," evoked considerable comment. The exacting part of "lo" was splendidly portrayed by Mrs. F. Thompson and the very effective work of the Greek Chorus by Mrs. Ruth Somers and Mrs. E.B. Dustan, augmented the readings of Messrs. Huxtable and Sutton. An interpretative lecture entitled "Promethean Man" by Mr. Dudley Barr on the Sunday following added much to the significance of the Presentation. Music from "The Planets" by Gustave Holst supplemented the lecture given by Miss M. Hindsley on the "Music of the Spheres," resulting in a very artistic interpretation of the astrological significance of the planets. The Occult Values in the Wagnerian music dramas provided Mr. J.W. Sutton with the material for three presentations including "The Ring of the Nibelung" in which Miss Merle Nickols gave a splendid reading of "Brunnhilde's Farewell" against a background of incomparable music. "Parsifal" was presented on Easter Sunday with the mystic sublimity of the "Good Friday Spell" music, and "Tristan and Isolde", a work of great power and beauty completed the Trilogy. A very interesting program of such presentations is being planned for the Fall Season, the details being worked out over the Summer months.
Few men know their inherent capacities - only the ordeal of crude chelaship develops them. - M.L. 372.
TORONTO LODGE STUDY GROUP
On Thursday, May 27th the group meeting each week under the direction of Mr. J.W. Sutton held its final session for the season. The gatherings constituted a study of the occult in literature and drama, an extension of the Sunday evening presentations along these lines. The program for the meetings was planned to allow of the personal contribution of all associated in the preparation of material and discussion, and proved a successful and constructive venture.
The closing session for the season dealt with the theories of Time and Recurrence as outlined in P.D. Ouspensky's astonishing book "A New Model of the Universe" and developed by J.B. Priestly in his interesting play "I have been here before". This play brings out the idea that we have been actors in a certain scene before; that the single and universal Time that is imagined to be hastening everything to decay and dissolution is an illusion; that our real selves are the whole stretches of our lives and that at any given moment during those lives we are merely taking a three-dimensional cross section of a four or multi-dimensional reality and that it is possible to change our individual Time track by the Spiritual Will.
During the season Mr. Dudley Barr reviewed two fascinating books: "Grey Eminence" by Aldous Huxley and "In Job's Balances" by Leo Chestov. The first book provided the group with an interesting comparison of the Mystical and Occult paths, as the life of Father Joseph was outlined and lively discussion, relative to the way of Power and that of Compassion. Leo Chestov, one of the best known of modern Russian Philosophers describes his book as a "wandering through souls". He subjects a series of well known figures
Dostoievsky, Tolstoy, Spinoza, Pascal
and Plotinus to a penetrating analysis and outlines his own philosophy in a brilliant defence of "audacity" the principle which defies "reason", worshipped without question by so many generations of philosophers.
Thornton Wilder's latest play "The Skin of Our Teeth" recently awarded a Pulitzer prize, proved very stimulating to the group in its unusually spectacular stagecraft and genuinely philosophical undertones. The play deals with the extraordinary adventures of the Antrobus family down through the ages, from the time the great wall of ice creeps over the world to the end of the war - any war. It is the story of the average Man and Woman in the beginning, now, and in between, involved in the eternal struggle between good and evil, the eternal see-saw of progression and falling back. It is a record of Man treading the long road to liberation, a testament of faith in humanity.
The symbolism contained in the play entitled "The Sightless" by Maurice Maeterlink provided the group with another constructive session. This thought-provoking play is a symbol of a world lost in the dark forest of unfaith and unknowledge, the ancient guide - the church - sitting dead in the midst of the devotees and those of little faith who, all alike, have lost the swift vision of the intuition and can only inform themselves of their situation by the slow uncertain groping of reason. In vain they seek for a guide in the animal instinct, in the glimmer of vision possessed by the poet, in some power of insight fancied in insanity, in the new-born future that cannot utter yet its revelation.
Richard Wagner "The Man" and his philosophy proved another worthwhile evening and the group were fortunate in the contributions of Mrs. Ida Bassanesi, long a student of the Wagnerian dramas. The "motives" of the music dramas were demonstrated and interestingly explained by Mrs. Sutherland.
Plans are being made to resume this group activity in the Fall the program for September including book reviews and plays among which are the latest book of Gerald Heard, "Man The Master" to be reviewed by Mrs. E.B. Dustan; The Poems of Rilke - reviewed by Mrs. I. Bassanesi and The Adorers of Dionysus (Pryse) by Mr. J.W. Sutton.
A THEOSOPHICAL MISSION
The program and class committee of the Toronto Lodge under the able Chairmanship of Mrs. E. B. Dustan has just completed a creative season of activities. Among the ideas contributed by the members of this committee is one that warrants consideration generally, and should prove of interest to all active Lodges throughout the country. The idea was submitted by Mr. Martin L. Stewart, a member of the committee and long a sincere student of Theosophy well known for his studies in Numerology and vibration in color and music, etc. It was suggested that the idea be publicized among members and friends of the Toronto Lodge by the distribution of the following printed statement at least a month before the lectures start.
What is A Mission?
When we say that a "Mission" is to be held in The Theosophical Hall you will wonder what excuse we can have for such an activity and what it will be like.
First, let us state what it is NOT - it is not an attempt to stir up religious fervor by sensational means; it will not try to get you excited with a view to getting something out of you; it is not in any sense a sales promotion campaign, nor is it a membership drive. It is primarily a presentation of Theosophic Principles in a series of addresses and instructions; advice, if you prefer that word, so that the listener can see how the three objects of the Society fit into each other and are, therefore, sup-
plementary - making in their complete unity a system of individual development.
Over a period of years, everyone has contacted systems designed to throw light on the soul's development but in most cases it has led to a condition of unsatisfied questioning. In the lectures presented to you from our platform you have heard talks on many and widely diverse subjects - pieces of a picture. In our Mission, we would present a more complete picture, not in detail, but in essentials.
These presentations will enable you - individually - to study, to fill in the details, thus enabling you to grow spiritually, mentally and physically to the true status of Man. This the "Mission" will do for you if you attend throughout the series as it will consist of a series of planned lectures. The lectures will, as far as possible, be in simple, understandable language and we can promise you good music and interpretive readings.
This "Mission" is intended to help every class of people in the Community. Those who have no interest in Religion - those who feel that they have lost the meaning of Religion; those who seek a real meaning of Life; those who are in trouble and distress; those who, though earnest people, feel that they have never quite found all the joy and peace they should have. This "Mission" will be a means by which they can get new light and inspiration. Finally, those who find it difficult to explain just what Theosophy is. For all of these the "Mission" will afford enlightenment and encouragement.
It should be kept in mind that all divisions which seek to divide the realy indivisible spirit are unsatisfactory and tend to veil from us the unity of the consciousness which is our self. Science (Senses) Morality (emotions) Philosophy (intellect) are but facets of the one diamond; aspects of the one spirit. Spiritual life (Religion) should be a synthesis of these three - they are but facets of the whole which should permeate all studies, as spirit permeates all forms.
Details of The Plan
Announcement each Sunday for at least eight Sundays of the coming "Mission" and a concise statement of its object, viz. to put into simple words the aims and objects of the Society. Each lecture to be written and passed on by a committee of three officers of the Society who will have the power to revise any statements not in absolute agreement with Theosophy as represented by this Society. Each lecture to be submitted to the committee at least one month before being delivered in public.
Outline of the Lectures Constituting the Mission
The Theosophical Society and Its Founders:
Definition of our objects.
Method of Study.
Theosophy As Science:
What is meant by "The Unexplained Laws of Nature".
The Physical Body.
The Emotional or Astral Sphere.
The Mental Sphere.
The Higher Spheres.
Theosophy As Morality and Art:
Why "No Distinction of Race, Creed, Sex, Caste or Color".
Right and Wrong.
Reason and Emotion.
Moral Precepts and Ideals.
The Form side - Art.
Beauty as the Law of Manifestation
Creation, not imitation.
Theosophy As Philosophy:
Powers Latent in Man.
How far can one develop these powers and keep the balance.
Basis for Philosophy.
The Law of Action and Reaction.
Theosophy As Religion:
Why "Comparative Religions, Philosophies and Science".
The Immanence of God.
Religions of the East and of the West.
Religious Ceremonies and Rites.
The Path to Perfection.
Theosophy Applied to Social Problems:
Division and Human Brotherhood.
"You" the individual.
Conditions of Peace.
Principles of the New World Order.
Systems and Worlds
The Building of the Atoms.
Atoms and Consciousness.
The Building of Forms.
The Coming of the Monad.
Root Races and Sub-Races.
As we go to press we have been notified that the program as submitted, is tentative, and subject to correction by the Commitee which is to take it into consideration. A meeting will be held in July, and we hope to present the conclusions arrived at.
THE BHAGAVAD GITA
A Conflation prepared from available English translations by the General Secretary
- The Esoteric Character of the Gospels By H. P. Blavatsky.
- The Evidence of Immortality By Dr. Jerome A. Anderson.
- Ancient and Modern Physics By Thomas E. Willson.
- Modern Theosophy By Claude Falls Wright.
The Four Books at 50c Each. Postage on Books Extra.
THE BLAVATSKY INSTITUTE
52 Isabella St., Toronto, Ontario
Much as the writer would like to be considered an adherent to the original Theosophical Society, the present situation in the World Movement is an obstacle. There are few traces of the Original Program left, and the original Society has been divided into three or four differing and dissenting Groups, each one claiming to be the true adherents of the teachings of H.P. Blavatsky. This cannot be if all are differently minded. There must be some explanation for this situation, and the writer's conclusion is that the leaders who succeeded H.P. Blavatsky and Colonel Olcott were not capable of following in their footsteps and therefore dissention arose, as well as a struggle for prominence and fame.
Whether the various leaders were in earnest, right in the various doctrines they promulgated, or utterly wrong and misleading, whether the teachings in some cases contradicted H.P. Blavatsky's writings or not, is a question each Theosophical member must decide for himself. Each one is obligated by his pledge to Truth to do his best to ascertain the facts and historical evidence on which to base his opinion. This is as individual duty, and it is the exercise of judgment upon facts which has led to the division of the original Society into different sects, as members followed various leaders.
Yet there is one Society. No matter what the various Theosophical Groups may call themselves, or how they disagree, the truth is that the original Society was founded by H.P. Blavatsky, and therefore all who use the name "Theosophical Society" are members of that Society.
If this could be understood, and all the Groups brought together once again, it might be that the world might have some faith in the teachings, seeing that Theosophists cease to disagree and dif-
fer about later leaders, and stand united upon the Original Program and the Teachings of the Founders.
True, it might hurt some members everywhere, those who have not exercized judgment and searched for the facts and historical proof of the divergences all leaders have inaugurated since H.P.B.'s day. Those who mistakenly cling to one person's books instead of standing upon the Knowledge of The Secret Doctrine and The Mahatma Letters, which give the Mahayana Cosmology, are most likely to protest. But others, who have sure footing and can survive the fall of any idol involved, should be sufficiently enlightened to call a Convention to discuss amalgamation. This should come from the oldest Group, representing the original Society founded by H.P.B., headquarters at Adyar, and from its worldwide sections.
There are no difficulties that men cannot overcome if they practice Brotherhood, they tell us in every issue of their publications. They tell the nations their duty in no uncertain terms - all in the name of Brotherhood. It would be well, to some members' minds, if the Adyar leaders would face their duty to the Theosophical Movement, and as brothers, make an effort to bring harmony into the Society. This duty lies within our own house, so to speak. Let them cease to tell nations and members what to do and not to do, until this duty is begun and finished.
It should not be hard to accomplish if undertaken in the right spirit. It should not be difficult if each Group would sacrifice a little to make a United Platform. For the differences involved are not doctrines or principles or ideals, which come to us from H.P.B., and on which we all agree. The differences are merely the opinions, innovations and theories of various leaders, no longer with us, who were associated with the Theosophical Movement since H.P.B. left us in 1891.
It is time to sweep aside the cobwebs and the accumulation of dust upon The Secret Doctrine, and to stand forth once more united on these teachings. If this cannot be done, we have no right to speak to non-members of the Society about Brotherhood, because we do not understand it ourselves, and are blind followers of dogma. It is our duty to be silent as a Movement unless we can set the example.
Can we make "UNION NOW" our next Theosophical objective?
- Anne Leslie Roger
May 15th, 1943.
7011 Woolston Road
WALLACE MACLEAN DIES
The death occurred on Saturday, May 29 of Wallace Maclean, the last of a notable newspaper family which included James, better known as Jim Maclean, thought by many to be the most brilliant of them all, who died in the early 90s; William Findlay Maclean, M.P., founder and final owner of The Toronto World; John; and Wallace who was editor of The World until about the end of last century. Three months ago Mr. Maclean suffered a stroke and has been in the hospital since then, passing at the age of 86. He was buried on Tuesday, 1st inst., in St. John's Cemetery, Norway, Toronto. He was one of four sons of the late John Maclean of Ancaster, near Hamilton, who was the father of the National Policy adopted by Premier Sir John Macdonald. They were all public-spirited men though Toronto is slow to recognize such service. W. F. Maclean put through many great reforms such as the building of the Don and Humber Viaducts by his advocacy of these improvements in the Toronto World but he gained no recognition from the city for this, though it added immensely to its extension and value any more than the late Controller J.J. Ward received any credit for the Sunny-
side improvement over which he spent years of agitation and advocacy. Wallace Maclean graduated from Toronto University in the class of 1880 which held an annual banquet till last year, and included among its members such men as Rev. Thos. Davidson and George Inglis, Hamilton; Dr. C.F. McGillivray, Whitby; J.B. Tyrell and Prof. W.J. Loudon, Toronto, a sister of the latter becoming the wife of Mr. Maclean. He is survived by his son, James E. Maclean, of Toronto, and eleven grandchildren, four of them in active service. These are: Capt. Don Maclean, R.C.O.C.; Flying Officer Jack Maclean, ferry command; Cpl. David Merrick, R.C.A.F. ; and Lieut. Wallace V. Maclean, R.C.E. Some years ago Mr. Wallace Maclean came to see me at the Theosophical Hall, 52 Isabella Street, Toronto, when I was attending a meeting of the General Executive. He waited till I was disengaged and told me he had read my "Crusts and Crumbs" articles in the Sunday World and had listened to my addresses and he had come to the conclusion that Theosophy was the most sensible system of thought he had ever become acquainted with, and he had decided to join the Society, and that he expected to give it some assistance. He knew of course that I had succeeded him as chief editorial writer on The World, and we had much conversation then and on a number of occasions subsequently, though a growing deafness prevented him attending our meetings. On my last visit to him he was absent and wrote me expressing his disappointment and his appreciation of The Canadian Theosophist which he read regularly. It struck me as a notable example of independence of mind that at the age of 80 a man of his culture and learning should take the step of joining our Society.
DR. ARUNDALE AND THE VIRGIN MARY
The Theosophical Society in England,
50 Gloucester Place,
London, W. 1.
April 15, 1943.
The Canadian Theosophist has long-maintained a strong and definite viewpoint and a high standard of article. It has served and will surely continue to serve a very valuable purpose within the wide range of Theosophical publications.
It is with regret, therefore, that I have read your recent article entitled Worship of the "Virgin Mary", and with mixed feelings pass on to you the enclosed letter - mixed because, while I heartily share the feelings which prompted the writer of the letter, I am naturally sorry that there should arise within The Theosophical Society at such a time as this, sufficient cause to warrant them.
We have, each one of us, our definite ideas - it is obvious that we must and right that we should - but difference of opinion between individuals can surely never justify attacks upon their personal integrity. Rather should the ideal of a brotherhood, which contains all differences be championed within The Society and out of it as never before, in face of' the tremendous attack upon this ideal that is being perpetrated today. Yours sincerely,
- John Coats,
I wonder how many readers of The Canadian Theosophist have, like myself, seen with deep regret the frequency and virulence of its attacks upon fellow-
[[Unfortunately pp 123-24 are missing from my copy. - Dig. ed.]]
Saying, "Here is a story book
Thy Father has written for thee."
"Come, wander with me," she said,
"Into regions yet untrod;
And read what is yet unread
In the manuscripts of God."
And he wandered away and away
With Nature, the dear old nurse,
Who sang to him night and day
The rhymes of the universe.
Is not this a better, truer, simpler, diviner conception than Dr. Arundale's trumpery Queen of Heaven, stolen from Juno, Isis and a dozen other ancient but faded superstitions? If Dr. Arundale had treated his idea as a personification, as Madame Delaire tries to convince us, no objection could have been raised, but his Virgin is the bald, flat sacerdotal dogma of the Roman Church and nothing else. Madame Delaire's comments regarding the root of Mary and the waters of Space would have been perfectly in order if Dr. Arundale had introduced them, but he did nothing of the sort. Instead, he upbraided the Protestants because they lacked the genuflexions and adoration of the Roman Communion. If one is a Roman and says so openly and above board there can be no objection in a society that preaches toleration, but if one is a Roman in practice and a Theosophist only by profession, then quisling and traitor are not inappropriate labels, when plain speech is needed if ever it was. Madame Delaire knows very well that no overt effort is being made to impose the worship of Durga on the world any more than the worship of Juno, Queen of Heaven, or Isis of Egypt. But that there is a most active and even sinister effort to bring the whole world under the domination of the Roman Church is known to us in Canada and the United States, in many parts of Europe, arid throughout Russia, even if this knowledge is not common in Britain. And when Dr. Arundale as president of The T.S. uses the language of this Roman propaganda and prominent members of the British Society like Mr. Coats and Madame Delaire aid and abet, support and defend him in it, what are we to think? We are being constantly warned by our Governments to watch out for quislings and traitors, and until Dr. Arundale disclaims the implications of his promotion of the worship of the Virgin Mary and the Queen of Heaven, dogmas of the Roman Church and its imitators, he must be content with the conclusions reasonable people draw from such conduct. I have been earnest and incessant in calling attention to the ancient Zodiac in Somerset, laid down there 4700 years ago. But do you see or hear any reference to it in any other Theosophical journal? Did any of the trained clairvoyants know anything about it? It is an uncomfortable memorial for those who wish to date the Virgin from Bethlehem to find that the Virgin of 5000 years ago so long anteceded and was the source of their worship. But it cannot be hid. Nor can The Secret Doctrine be suppressed.
Books by Wm. Kingsland
The Mystic Quest; The Esoteric Basis of Christianity; Scientific Idealism; The Physics of the Secret Doctrine; Our Infinite Life; Rational Mysticism; An Anthology of Mysticism; The Real H.P. Blavatsky; Christos: The Religion of the Future; The Art of Life; The Great Pyramid, 2 vols.; The Gnosis.
May be had from JOHN M. WATKINS, 21 Cecil Court, Charing Cross Road, London, W. C. 2, England.
BOOKS BY CHARLES JOHNSTON
- Bhagavad Gita ..... cloth $1.25 leather $1.75
- Crest Jewel of Wisdom ......... cloth $1.25
- Great Upanishads, vol. I. ......... cloth $1.50
- Parables of the Kingdom ......... paper .50
- Patanjali's Yoga sutras ......... cloth $1.25
- Song of Life .......... paper .75
THE QUARTERLY BOOK DEPARTMENT
P.O. Box 64, Station O. New York City
The advent of a new poet is as important as anything in history, for it means a new revelation of truth, beauty and power. It is rarely that the first manifestations of poetry come in power but this poem by Earle Birney shows power in a high degree. It is natural in an age when power is manifested in the tank that some uncouthness might attend the expression of a poet's thought who aimed to mirror his age and its economics, but there is little of the clank of the tank in these verses; for if he abandons rhyme he has chosen to ally himself with rhythm and he moves as easily and gracefully and as unaffectedly as the diplodoccus must have swayed and swung itself over the swamps of eons foregone. The poet has rhyme and rhythm and beauty of language to carry his thought to the world. Walt Whitman with exalted power chose at first to ignore everything but himself. But gradually, while he almost wholly abandoned rhyme, he pehaps unconsciously adopted the graces and cadences of natural movement and the subtle loveliness of his rhythm has escaped many of the cloistered critics who never lay by the shore to hear the deep sea's roar, nor listened to the pulsing whispers of the woods when the throbbing winds brushed the foliage. Whitman gradually developed his art and to his rhythm added a beauty of language unsurpassed by any poet. "When lilacs last in the dooryard bloomed" may be studied by any budding poet who seeks the secret magic of speech, and that is only one of a dozen of glorious psalms. We can only hope that Dr. Earle may be spared to conquer his medium, for the subleties of basic English can never be exhausted, any more than the crudities of our ever-spreading language can be conquered by heaping them all together without the aid of the architect. In this poem, "David," Dr. Earle displays the power of the masterhand as well as the sweet sensitiveness of the heart. There is no more poignant passage in literature than his description of the tragedy of the Finger, when the climax of the mountain climb ended in disaster. This is not the story of a reporter, an outsider, but the heart-throes of one who lived through it. These sections vii and viii are very great poetry, and the conclusion is no anticlimax. The book of forty pages quarto ends with another fine poem, "On Going to the Wars." Here in three pages is said everything that modern man may need or want to say - "The sun unquenched within our day." If we can realize what this means we have redeemed our world. The in-between poems of which there are nineteen, have various appeal, for the reader must realize that Dr. Earle sees life as a whole. We like "October in Utah" but "Reverse on the Coast Range," "Dusk on English Bay," and "Vancouver Lights" are not far behind. This is a book to cherish, and first editions in a generation may be sought as eagerly as firsts of Masefield or W.H. Davies. While this is a first book Dr. Earle is no novice. Born in Calgary in 1904 he took his B.A. with first class honors in the University of B.C., and his M.A. and Ph.D. froth the University of Toronto, and is assistant professor of English in University College. He is on leave of absence and on active service with the Canadian Army. (Toronto: The Ryer-son Press.)
"Canada at Dieppe"
It is a long time since a book by Arthur S. Bourinot has come into our hands though we believe he has been publishing regularly since years ago we reviewed one of his books. The present 16-page story of the Dieppe raid follows Dr. Pratt's method of taking the newspaper accounts and putting it into rhetoric. Mr. Bourinot has more natural lyrical endowments than Dr.
Pratt and commences his recital in the chant of an ancient saga. But he reverts to journalese half way through and only returns to the lyrical line in the last three pages. If Dieppe is worthy of poetic commoration, or if any of our recent naval or aerial or army actions be worthy of poetic record, a new way must be found to translate our mechanics into forms of prosodic speech. Kipling did it in his time, but that is a dead and gone age. Scott and Aytoun and Macaulay could have done it. But they have not got back in time. Bourinot has something of the true ballad-monger about his chant and may apply himself as the true singer must to the forging of lyrical fetters. Tennyson did it in "The Charge of the Heavy Brigade" and the glorious ballad of Lucknow. Meantime Mr. Bourinot's Canada at Dieppe will be welcomed by all who have been interested in the raid or those who took part in it. (Toronto, The Ryerson Press.)
Christmas Humphreys is better known as an essayist than as a poet, but a prose writer who begins to feel the magic of language and the miracle of thought as true mates sooner or later strives after their perfect union. In these 40 pages there is an uneven contribution, but enough of the Song of Life to echo in the reader's heart. When he bids farewell to youth in moments of pessimistic fatigue he may adopt this "Vale Juventas" until he recovers his joy of life in "Beauty's Unveiling," and "newly find Incomparable beauty in her lair." We like "Dorchester on Thames" with its vignettes Dawn, Noon, and Sunset.
The girdled fortress slumbers on the moonlit hill
And watches still the rampart lines of Rome.
About the Druids' sombre grove
Unnumbered generations wove
The tapestry of time, and rest
Below the Wittenhams' ample breast
The while the waters, seeking home,
Salute the dawn at Dorchester.
"Death is a dead man's song. Life is the lone, Immortal only God" he sings in a joyous chant only possible to those who know that the flesh is an illusive veil out of which the real man steps victorious in his risen body as the breath leaves his corpse. Then indeed he can shout with St. Paul, O Death, where is thy sting?
And we, the eternal pilgrims of the Way
That move from life to life, as living day
Wakes from the tomb of night, view from afar
With shining and inviolable eyes
The heart's enlightenment until, new wise
We slow become what now unknown we are.
There are many Britons who will treasure the lines which say -
"I know, for these eyes have seen it,
that even if Edward failed
A light went out in England on the
night when Edward sailed."
There is much of the old-time fervor and furor in The Ballad of Mendip Moor and althogether the little book is a human document we can return to with friendly eyes. (London: The Favil Press, 4/6.)
"Visions and Dreams"
Lieutenant Gurnett in this little book has made a selection of poems approved in earlier volumes with some additions, and dedicates them to his parents with a modesty that should touch many of a kindred mood: "With appreciation that I was born without practical, worldly, or business capability; and therefore with eyes open to the wonder of life." It is not surprising after this to find much of his verse touched wtih the minor tone of the inferiority complex, the sacerdotal appeal to others to do that for us which we are empowered to do for ourselves.
In "Sea-Forged Nordic Sword Blade", The "First Furlough" and "White Lodge" we find a nobler note, the note of equal privilege, positive action, the soul's achievement. (London: The Theo-sophical Publishing House, 1/-.)
Direction by Masters of Wisdom
The Blavatsky Lecture by Josephine Ransom, delivered at Besant Hall, London, 23rd May last year, has been issued in pamphlet form by the Theosophical Publishing House price One Shilling, under the title The Direction of the Theosophical Society by Masters of Wisdom. The title is a contradiction of the well-known statement by one of the Masters that they do not guide or direct it; they protect it. But for such protection it must have perished long ago, considering all its errors and follies. When any human organization falls back on the merit of its patrons for its claim on public attention rather than on its services to mankind or its achievements in knowledge it is hardly justifying its existence. Mrs. Ransom draws entirely from The Mahatma Letters and The Secret Doctrine in illustrating the methods of training to which pupils of the Masters are subjected. But in giving examples of the alleged results of such training the most recent names are of some who have violated the most important principles which the Masters held. However a recognition of the existence of the Masters can only be had subjectively, and real Arhats and Adepts never make claims of their status. But the ideals of the Masters are high enough and so unselfish that readers may be led to the ideals without being hindered by any flaws in this lecture. Why Quorn, may we ask, on page 27?
We have received the following: Toronto Theosophical News, May; The Theosophical Forum, Covina, May; Lucifer, Boston, May; The Federation Quarterly, April; Ancient Wisdom, May; Theosophy, Los Angeles, May; The Theosophical Movement, Bombay, January; The Theosophical Worker, Adyar, February; The Theosophist, Adyar, February; The Aryan Path, Bombay, January; Theosophy, Los Angeles, May; The Link, Johannesburg, Feb.-March; The American Theosophist, May; Revista Teosofica Argentina, March-April; Revista Teosofica Cubana, Jan.-February; Theosophy in Australia, April-May; Theosophy in Ireland, Jan.-March; Red Cross Despatch, April-May; The Path, Sydney, Australia, Jan.-March; Canada At War, May; Theosophy in New Zealand, April-June; The Theosophical Forum, Covina, June; National Money News, May; Lucifer, Boston, June; The Pro and Con Vox, May-June; Theosophical News & Notes, England, May-June; Espiritualidad, Mendoza, January; Buddhism in England, March-April.
ADVICE AGAINST TRAVEL
Traverse not the globe for lore! The sternest
But the surest teacher is the heart;
Studying that and that alone, thou learnest
Best and soonest whence and what thou art.
Moor, Chinese, Egyptian, Russian, Roman,
Tread one common down-hill path of doom;
Everywhere the names are man and woman,
Everywhere the old sad sins find room.
Evil angels tempt us in all places.
What but sands or snows hath earth to give?
Dream not, friend, of deserts and oases;
But look inwards, and begin to live!
- James Clarence Mangan