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VOL. VII. No. 2 TORONTO, APRIL 15th, 1926 Price 10 Cents
IDENTITY OF FUNDAMENTAL DOCTRINE
"No one who has not practiced during his whole life, the ten virtues which the divine Manu makes incumbent as a duty, can be initiated into the Mysteries of the council," say the Hindu books of initiation.
These virtues are: "Resignation; the act of rendering good for evil; temperance; probity; purity; chastity; repression of the physical senses; the knowledge of the Holy Scriptures; that of the Superior soul (spirit); worship of truth; abstinence from anger." These virtues must alone direct the life of a true Yogi. "No unworthy adept ought to defile the ranks of the holy initiates by his presence for twenty-four hours." The adept becomes guilty after having once broken any one of these vows. Surely the exercise of such virtues is inconsistent with the idea one has of devil-worship and lasciviousness of purpose!
And now we will try to give a clear insight into one of the chief objects of this work. What we desire to prove is, that underlying every ancient popular religion was the same ancient wisdom-doctrine, one and identical, professed and practiced by the initiates of every country, who alone were aware of its existence and importance. To ascertain its origin, and the precise age in which it was matured, is now beyond human possibility. A single glance, however, is enough to assure one that it could not have attained the marvelous perfection in which we find it pictured to us in the relics of the various esoteric systems, except after a succession of ages. A philosophy so profound, a moral code so ennobling, and practical results so conclusive and so uniformly demonstrable is not the growth of a generation, or even a single epoch. Fact must have been piled upon fact, deduction upon deduction, science have begotten science, and myriads of the brightest human intellects have reflected upon the laws of nature, before this ancient doctrine had taken shape. The proofs of this identity of fundamental doctrine in the old religions are found in the prevalence of a system of initiation; in the secret sacerdotal castes who had the guardianship of mystical words of power, and a public display of a phenomenal control over natural forces, indicating association with preternatural beings. Every approach to the Mysteries of all these nations was guarded with the same jealous care, and in all, the penalty of death was inflicted upon initiates of any degree who divulged the secrets entrusted to them. We have seen that such was the case in the Eleusinian and Bacchic Mysteries, among the Chaldean Magi, and the Egyptian Hierophants; while with the Hindus, from whom they were all derived, the same rule has prevailed from time immemorial.
- Isis Unveiled, ii. 98-99.
THE LIVES OF THE CHRISTS
THE VIRGIN BIRTH
Continued from page 5
It is difficult to deal with any of the characters in the Greek myths without going into these stories more fully - and that is beyond the scope of these articles. However, a partial explanation is perhaps necessary here. The Over-Lord, Zeus is the Life, the Breath, the Fire of the Cosmos. The inner Zeus is the life principle which awakens into activity the faculties of man. It is, therefore, the 'Father' which impregnates negative or quiescent potentialities, and thus creates many 'Children.' This seems a far more reasonable and likely interpretation than that given literal translators who insist upon regarding Zeus as a profligate Lothario.
Hermes, the son of Zeus and Maia is the messenger of the gods. He is Mercury (Buddhi) and the faculty within which initiates Prometheus, the Ego, as he lies crucified on Caucasus. The emancipation of Prometheus is the eleventh labor of Hercules and his twelfth is the regaining of his own kingdom.
Tammuz of Babylon (Adonis) the "only son" of Ea is regarded as having been born of the Virgin Istar. She is represented with the Divine Child in her arms, her head surrounded with a halo and crowned with twelve stars. The birth took place on the day corresponding to December 25th in our calendars.
Atys or Attis, worshiped in Phrygia, was called the only begotten son. His mother Nana, was a virgin who conceived by placing in her bosom a ripe almond or pomegranate. This is an interesting reference as the pomegranate is one of the fruits mentioned in other religious systems and apparently has to do with the 'butterfly body' or the body of the Resurrection, meshed in the physical vehicle. The release of this body from the folds of denser matter is as difficult as the removal of the 'mesh of the pomegranate from the fruit'.
Before passing on to follow this legend in other lands it might be well to mention at this point two other great teachers, whom, although not commonly regarded as Redeemers, were, nevertheless, Light Bearers and carried the fire of Spiritual insight to their fellow men some hundred of years before the date of the reputed birth of Jesus Christ. Socrates and Pythagoras were both said to be born of virgins having gods and not men as their fathers. And of Socrates it is told that wise men came from the East to visit him bringing the customary gifts of gold, frankincense and myrrh.
The ancient legends of Ireland remind one very much of those of Greece. There is the same atmosphere of golden light in which the characters move, the same grandeur and strengths, the same mingling of the gods and heroes. Different accounts are given of the birth of Lug Lam Fadan, one of the central figures but the best attested is that which makes him the son of the god Cian and the maiden Ethne, the daughter of Balor. It was believed that a son of Ethne was to kill her father and Balor therefore shut her up in an inaccessible place. But despite his precautions, Ethne gave birth to three children, whom Balor threw into the sea. One of them, Lug, was rescued and brought up by foster parents. He lived to slay Balor by piercing his single eye with a red hot iron.
The Druids of Britain had the legend of Hesus born of his virgin mother Mayence. December 25th was the date of important festivals connected with the religion of the time and was also held to be the birthday of Jao Wapaul.
The story of Baldur the Beautiful, the White Christ is the Scandinavian setting for another presentation of the Drama. Baldur was the son of Odin, the All Father, conceived of Frigga.
America has at least two of these traditions which bear a remarkable resemblance to the Christian Story. Each of them formed the central idea in religious systems which flourished among the ancient inhabitants of this continent ages before Columbus 'discovered' it. Archeological research among the sites of these ancient civilizations has as yet only succeeded in unearthing from the jungles a few of the larger cities. Students of comparative religion will watch the re-
sults of these efforts with great interest. The interpretation of the hieroglyphics will doubtless throw much additional light on the religions systems of these former civilizations and if one may judge from the available evidence there is ample reason to believe that America will give to the world a very complete story of these two great figures.
Quetzalcoatl, who carne to the Aztecs, was born at the time of the winter solstice. The story of his birth as reported in Kingsborough's 'Mexican Antiquities' reads: "an ambassador was sent from heaven to a Virgin of Tulan, called Chimalman......announcing that it was the will of the God that she should conceive a son; and having delivered her the message he arose and left the house; and as soon as he had left it she conceived a son, without connexion with man, who was called Quetzalcoatl, who they say is the god of the air." It is explained that the word Quetzalcoatltopitzin means "our well-beloved son."
Bacab was the name of art ancient Saviour of Yucatan who was born of his virgin mother Chiribirias. The Peruvians acknowledged a trinity in unity and worshiped Racab, the figure therein corresponding to the Son in Christian theology.
This completes the first section of this series of articles. We have seen in our examinations so far that the tradition of the virgin birth is to be found all over the earth - that it is the universally accepted phenomenon accompanying the appearance of a great Teacher. And when we realize that to many a Holy Mother there came an Annunciation; that many bands of wise men were lead by stars to cradles of Holy Infants; that shepherds of Palestine, Greece, India, China, praised and adored the Child who came to them; that angels sang over their lowly resting places in many lands; that in most of the stories some cruel king or opposer desires the death of the child, who is to usurp his place, we are confirmed in our belief that the story is not unique and that it does not belong to any one race or country. There have been many of such appearances and as the Gita teaches the Saviors have been with the race since the beginning and will come again until the end of time.
Declines, O Bharata, when wickedness
Is strong, I rise, from age to age and take
Visible shape, and move a man with men,
Succouring the good, thrusting evil back
And setting Virtue on her seat again.
The old ideas that have ruled the world of religious thought for so long are slowly changing and giving place to a vision of an eternally-pure, redemptive spirit in man - not a product of any country or of any age - which ever inspires individuals to seek the Christ principle in their own hearts; to listen for the Annunciation; to wait patiently during the long and holy silence of preparation; to guard and preserve the first manifestation of that Splendid One; to kneel in prayer and offer gifts of the gold of learning, the incense of devotion - and the myrrh of renunciation, when that redeemer sets out on its final task - the building of the bridge over the gulf lying between the personality and the All-Self.
- Dudley W. Barr.
TOLERANT AND MAGNANIMOUS
The seeker for wisdom should break away from all fixed opinions and creeds, and rejoice in perfect freedom of thought. His mind is likened to a fawn that is joyous after having avoided the nets and out speeded the hounds of the hunters. But he should be magnanimous, and be tolerant toward those who would compel him to accept their narrow religious views and unfounded theories. He should be like a warrior who, having rendered his foe defenseless, refrains from striking a final blow. In the slow course of evolution, ignorance, false faiths and unfaiths, will vanish; for Divine Wisdom is the compelling and guiding force of evolution. And he who seeks to gain that wisdom, and thereby enter into the eternal peace of the spiritual life, must be diligent in the perfective work; for, of those who strive for it, many are they who fail.
- James Pryse in "The Adorers or Dionysus, p. 42.
LETTERS THAT MAY HELP YOU
Friend . . . . . . .
Examining the other statement, we shall find that it asserts that "MAN" is not only what the materialist says he is physically, but also consists of something the physical instruments of the materialist cannot see, weigh or measure, viz: that which we call "spiritual;" that man consists not only of matter, but also of spirit; some saying that spirit is the more important of the two, others asserting that the two (spirit and matter) are co-equal, that they are the two opposite poles of the same thing. We can, for the moment leave this phase of the question for future consideration.
There is one significant FACT that I want you to hear in mind and to remember, for opinions formed and hypotheses deduced from this FACT will have far-reaching effects in our argument as we progress. This is why I ask you particularly to note this first FACT. It is this:
Materialists and atheists assert that the universe is ruled according to LAW.
Nature asked the same questions under the same conditions will always give the same answer. It must be evident to everyone that if it did not, we should have a state of chaos. Two and two make four, four and four make eight; those quantities give the same result today just as they did yesterday, and as they will tomorrow. They give the same result anywhere and everywhere outside a lunatic asylum. So with other things. If two and two made four yesterday, and today make five, and tomorrow four and a half, we should have absolutely no basis on which to build our mathematics, our science, and all the other things we use as bases for the ordering of our existence.
Here are some quotations from leading materialists: -
"The energies working in matter work, so far as our observation extends, according to immutable laws, which never
vary" - Th : Moldenhauer.
"Natural laws are immutable - they must be regarded as being eternal as matter and as Nature itself" - Buchner.
" - in the whole universe not an atom moves except by law" - Du Prel.
"Everywhere" says Cr. H. Schneider "we observe only immutable laws and blindly working causes."
Note the words I have italicized, and then try to figure out how it is possible for "blindly working causes" to produce a Shakspere, a Michel Angelo, a Beethoven, a Father Damien, and a Buddha, not to say anything of a planet, a sun, or a solar system. It would be interesting to have a materialist tell us how LAWS can be evolved by "blindly working causes." Unfortunately, I have no knowledge of any such data given by any materialist. I have sought eagerly for such data for over forty years, but my search has, so far, been unsuccessful.
I give the above quotations so as to show you that atheists as well as theists assert that the universe is ruled according to LAW. It must be obvious that if our universe were not ruled by LAW, we should have absolutely no basis on which to work; all our work would indeed be done blindly, for we should never be sure of getting the results we aimed at. Life under such conditions would be the most cruel hell possible.
We may, I think, take it for granted that for once the materialist is correct. What the atheist-materialist will not grant is the need or existence of a Law-Maker: - GOD.
As the arguments against the existence of GOD are about even with those in favour of His existence; as it is impossible for a part - and an exceedingly small part - to know or cognize the whole; and as to my mind the arguing on the question is something like a microbe on the Washington monument saying that while he can see the builder's handiwork, yet as it cannot see the builder it refuses to believe in his existence. I think we need not waste time arguing either for or against the existence of God. We can he content to admit that the building up of the smallest flowering plant which achieves daily the miracle of
transforming (so-called) inorganic minerals into organic vegetable cells, which in term make leaves and flowers of varying colours and exquisite perfumes, displays POWER and KNOWLEDGE and WISDOM that far, very very far transcends our puny powers, and when we try to realize that this UNKNOWN POWER builds universes, suns, planets with the wealth of varied forms and species of minerals, plants, animals and humans, we must humbly confess our total inability to cope with the problem of cognizing that POWER except as it is displayed in some of its simplest forms and manifestations.
As a rough analogy, let us consider a watch with its mechanism.
Every part of that watch, even to its smallest cog on the smallest wheel, is so built and adjusted that it will do what is desired, viz: to keep time. If any one of the parts of that watch has to carry more than it was intended to carry, the equal distribution of strain is disturbed and the watch will not keep time, and may stop.
Can watches be made so that they will keep correct time? As far as it is humanly possible, watches have been and are made to keep what may be called "correct time;" the deviation from the absolute being infinitesimal. To make that possible, the various parts of that watch must have only their allotted portion of work to do, hence we have a law of balance and justice between the various parts of that watch; if there were not this law of balance and justice, the watch would not keep time, and would probably stop; anyway, its movements would be more or less erratic.
Let us apply this analogy to what we know of our universe and manifested life.
You are probably aware that what we call "stars" are in reality suns, most of them being very much larger than the sun of our own solar system. You are probably also aware that the distances of those stars from us are so great that astronomers, instead of using the mile as a basis for calculating those distances, use as a unit what they term a "light year."
As light travels at the rate of about 186,000 miles in one second of time, that rate is multiplied by the number of seconds in a year of 365 days, giving the distance in miles light travels in that period of time. That distance - which you can work out for yourself - is called a "light-year," and is the unit - the yardstick, as it were - the astronomer uses when measuring the distance in stellar space.
Measured with this yard-stick, we find that the nearest star to us (Alpha Centauri - "A" in the Southern Constellation of the Centaur) is about 3-4 years (lightyears) away from us; that is, its light takes 3-4 years to reach us!
When one realizes that it takes only 8 minutes for our sun's light to reach us; that this Alpha Centauri sun is the nearest star to us; when we remember that there are stars - which are flaming suns - so far from us that their light takes thousands of years to reach us; that there are stars so far distant that the eye looking through our most powerful telescope fails to see them, and we only know of their being there because they leave the imprint of their light on the telescope's photographic plate, the immensity of our known (?) universe, and the grandeur of the UNSEEN POWER underlying these phenomena begin to dawn upon our consciousness.
When we ask an astronomer whether he can tell where any of these particular stars or planets will be, say twelve months hence, he can point to the spot on his star-map that star or planet will occupy at that particular time. He can do more than that. He can tell us that in a certain year a certain comet entered our field of vision, passed around our sun, and then went off into unknown space where even the photographic plate cannot catch the imprint of its light. If he is asked regarding its possible return, he can tell us that, barring unknown and unforeseen circumstances, that particular comet will return to our solar system at such and such a time in such and such a year. Astronomers have done this with such success that the error of their calculations (due to unforeseen causes) have amounted to only seconds of time; a very close approach to infallibility.
The astronomer is able to do this because he is aware that LAW governs the
movements of those stars, planets, comets, etc.; and he can predict the position of those heavenly bodies with what amounts almost to infallibility because he knows that he can rely on that LAW.
Now let us carry the analogy of the watch into this problem of ours.
Just as in the instance of the watch we have the same LAW of BALANCE, the same LAW of JUSTICE in all the parts of this bigger watch - the universe, for if we had not, the whole combination would go to the "demnition bow-wows;" instead of the stars, planets and comets keeping time and keeping their engagements to be on the spots indicated by the astronomer, we should have a state of chaos and anarchy.
Again, considering that LAW rules the movements of these immense suns, planets, etc., it is but logical to suppose and believe that LAW also rules the little microbes and bugs we call human beings who occupy such an insignificant position on one of the smallest of these planets; for if the LAW governs the whole it must necessarily govern the parts, seeing that the parts combined make the whole.
If you can find any flaw in this reasoning, I beg you to let me know of it so that I may try to answer your objections.
It is possible that you may interject a question here, viz: - "Are watches made absolutely perfect, and do they keep
absolutely correct time?" The answer is, "No." "Then" - you may say - the analogy of the watch does not absolutely apply to the universe." To which the answer is, "Yes." And for this reason The Great Teachers who are responsible For 'statement number two' (the materialistic statement being number one) tell us that the stars, planets, comets, etc. which we see with our physical eyes are only the physical bodies of Beings possessing consciousness, and who are not (at their own stage of development) perfect any more than we are perfect at our stage of development; which means that the whole universe is developing and evolving.
Thus enters into our calculations the factor known as "Freewill within limits;" which, by the way, is the 'nigger in the woodpile.'
Physicists tell us that our Earth does not turn on its axis in an absolutely even rotation; it wobbles in about ten distinct directions. The physical body we call the Earth is made up of combinations of consciousnesses different from the consciousness of the Being that ensouls the physical Earth; just as our physical body is made up of combinations of consciousnesses (which the medical profession calls microbes, bacilli, etc.) that are different from the consciousness of the real inner soul-man that ensouls, and which should govern, our physical body.
To avoid losing sight of the thread of our main theme, we shall examine this 'joker' of "Freewill within limits" in a separate letter.
With my best wishes,
(To be continued)
"MODERN APOSTLES AND PSEUDO MESSIAHS"
The subject of apostles and Messiahs was very prominent in the early days of the Theosophical Society. It is dealt with in a trenchant manner in Lucifer, for July 1890. At this period of publication, the names of H.P.B. and A. Besant appeared on the title page as editors, and the article, from which the following extracts were taken, was published under their authority, and truly reflects a Theosophical concept on this subject.
If Theosophy had done nothing else, it would have made a demand on human gratitude in placing the truth and falsehood of these psychic experiences, unfoldments, or delusions as the case might be, plainly before the people, and explaining their rationale. It showed a plane of manhood, and proved it unassailably to a number of persons, which transcends any powers or capacities of the inspirational psychic who may imagine himself or herself to be a messenger to the world at large. It placed personal purity on a level which barred out nine-tenths of these claimants from all thought of their presumed inheritance, and showed that such a condition of purity, far transcending any popular ideal of such virtue, was the absolute and all-essential basis of spiritual insight
and attainment. It swept the ground from under the feet of those poor men and women who had been listening to the so-called messages from the angels, that they were the chosen of heaven, and were to accomplish world-wide missions. The Joan of Arcs, the Christs, the Buddhas, the Michaels, were fain to see truths that they had not dreamed of, and gifts they had never possessed, exercised in silence and with potent force by men whose names were unknown even to history, and recognized only by hidden disciples, or their peers. Something higher was placed before the sight of these eager reformers than fame: it was truth. Something higher than the most purified union between even one man and one woman in the most spiritual of sympathies, was shown; it was the immortal union of the soul of man with God. Wherever Theosophy spreads, there it is impossible for the deluded to mislead, or the deluded to follow. It opens a new path, a forgotten philosophy which has lived through the ages, a knowledge of the psychic nature of man, which reveals alike the true status of the Catholic saint, and the spiritualistic medium the Church condemns. It gathers reformers together, throws light on their way, and teaches them how to work towards a desirable end with most effect, but forbids any to assume a crown or sceptre, and no less delivers from a futile crown of thorns. Mesmerisms and astral influences fall back, and the sky grows clear enough for higher light. It hushes the "Lo here! and to there!" and declares the Christ, like the kingdom of heaven, to be within. It guards and applies every aspiration and capacity to serve humanity in any man, and shows him how. It overthrows the giddy pedestal, and safely cares for the human being on solid ground. Hence, in this way, and in all other ways, it is the truest deliverer and saviour of our time.
To enumerate the various "Messiahs" and their beliefs and works would fill volumes. It is needless. When claims conflict, all, on the face of it, cannot be true. Some have taught less error than others. It is almost the only distinction. And some have had fine powers imperilled and paralyzed by leading; they did not understand.
Of one thing, rationally-minded people, apart from Theosophists, may be sure. And that is, service for humanity is its all-sufficient reward; and that empty jars are the most resonant of sound. To know a very little of the philosophy of life, of man's power to redeem wrongs and to teach others, to perceive how to thread the tangled maze of existence on this globe, and to accomplish aught of lasting and spiritual benefit, is to annihilate all desire or thought of posing as a heaven-sent saviour of the people. For a very little self-knowledge is a leveler indeed, and more democratic than the most ultraradical can desire. The best practical reformers of the outside abuses we have known, such as slavery, deprivation of the rights of woman, legal tyrannies, oppressions of the poor, have never dreamed of posing as Messiahs. Honor, worthless as it is, followed them unsought, for a tree is known by its fruits, and to this day "their works do follow them."
With the advent of Theosophy, the Messiah-craze surely has had its day, and sees its doom. For if it teaches, or has taught, one thing more plainly than another, it is that the "first shall be last, and the last first." And in the face of genuine spiritual growth, and true illumination, the Theosophist grows in power who most truly befriends and helps his fellows, while he becomes the most humble, the most silent, the most guarded of men.
Saviors to their race, in a sense, have lived and will live. Rarely has one been known. Rare has been the occasion when thus to be known has been either expedient or possible. Therefore, fools alone will rush in "where angels fear to tread."
Ambition is the first curse, the great tempter of the man who is rising above his fellows. It is the simplest form of looking for reward. Men of intelligence and power are led away from their higher possibilities by it continually. Yet it is a necessary teacher. Its results turn to dust and ashes in the mouth; like death and estrangement it shows the man at last that to work for self is to work for disappointment.
-Light on the Path.
The triune Soul of the Cycles
The greatest cause of the many spiritual and mental misunderstandings among members of the Theosophical Society is the failure to grasp in a clear and vital manner what a cycle is, or rather what the nature and Law of THE Cycle, the archetype of all cycles, big or small, in-organism. [[sic?]] The cycle may last as long as a manvantara, or as brief as a century or the seven-year period of a man's life - still the progress of events, as long as events are considered as abstract symbols of impersonal relations, is never fundamentally altered. Cycles are short or long; the Law of Cyclicity is changeless; in the same way in which circles are small or big, yet the proportion pi remains ever permanent. This pi is therefore the absolute truth of the cycle, its changeless principle; knowing and understanding it we come in contact with the realm of Immutability . . . . . . . with THEOSOPHY.
Theosophy in its deepest and eternal aspect is the pi of the Cosmos, the LAW. It is so as a philosophy, as Absolute Wisdom, Changeless Knowledge: Dzyu in Thibetan. It can no more change than the proportion pi can ever be modified. This proportion measures the relation of diameter (or radius) to circumference, that is of the creative impulse to the organism in space filled by this impulse intrinsically are. Should we think in terms of cycles instead of in terms of personalities, divine or human as may be the case, much confusion would have been avoided: for the proper place of events in relation to the beginning and end of cycles, as well as the proper relation of personalities and their messages to the same cycles would have been revealed in the light of evidence based upon universal facts.
We have touched upon these subjects in two preceding articles, but recent happenings have made it important that an insistent light be thrown upon the very same topics.
Cycles are units of organization in time, as living organisms are units of organization in space. A cycle is that period of time during which a unity of consciousness, a monad, differentiates from the bosom of cosmic substance, grow, matures, and is reabsorbed into the One. An organism is the composite mass of substance which serves as a vehicle to the unfolding monad. Whether the monad is the informing principle of a solar system, an animal, a human ego, an atom, or a collective Human Race, does not effect the Law of unfolding and likewise Theosophy establishes the Law of relationship between the Unit of consciousness (the monad) and the universe of substance which it informs.
Thus in its totality Theosophy is triune; for it is a philosophy (a Law of relationship - Auric Egg), a basis of activity for the monad (Practical Occultism - Atma-Manas), a basis of organization of the monad's (Civilization - Manas-Buddhi).
As a philosophy Theosophy is unchangeable and permanent. It is the truth of the entire cycle, from the largest Cycle to small sub-cycles. The first phase of all cycles is the involutionary stage, when the Original Impulse descends into matter, when the monad incarnates deeper and deeper. This is the time for Practical Occultism, the summons made to the spiritual souls to incarnate by the magic of real meditation and the power of occult chelaship. It is the time when "gods walk among men" . . . . . . or correspond with them, sending thus their magnetism; when they therefore clothe themselves in personalities.
The second phase is the evolutionary phase, when the informed substance is raised to spiritual sublimation by the power of the incarnated Idea; when the heterogeneous tends towards the homogeneous condition: Nirvana. The work to be accomplished is then the work of Civilization. The lives within the magic circle of the monadic descent must be organized into a form reflecting the Archetypal Form of the Monad-Idea. The differentiated organism must be made into the likeness of its father: Space. In other words collectivities, be they social or cellular, must be civilized. The Glorified Body must be built, the Temple of Solomon.
The inspirer alike of the work of practical occultism and of the work of civili-
nation is the Philosophy. Therefore in order that this Philosophy be ever-manifest during the whole of the Cycle (we might say in order that the circle does not become an ellipse or a parabola and disintegrate altogether), this Philosophy must be PRESERVED in its integrity. This is obviously the mission, especially at present, of what is known as the White Lodge, the Company of the Keepers of the Records, the Safe where is locked the formula of Change for this earthly cycle. Should the Formula be lost and the memory of it vanish from the souls of men, the cycle would run swiftly towards its disintegration. It would become SOUL-LESS.
The next thing to realize is how corruption sets in the life of the cycle and evil appears. It is probably correct to say that the basic source of all evil is the spiritual selfishness which makes one refuse to give out the Philosophy when Nature (which "unaided failed") calls for it. When spiritual Souls, "jealous of their intellectual freedom," (see Secret Doctrine II. 228) hoard as it were spiritual energy for the sake of self, and commit thus the great sin against Compassion, "the Law of LAWS - eternal Harmony . . . the light of everlasting right and fitness of all things" ( Voice of Silence p. 73), then karmic results are produced as follows:
During the involutionary period the centrifugal forces are naturally at work, the One becoming the Many; which means that life works towards self-division. But as the bottom of the cycle is reached the centripetal forces begin to predominate, the tide turns. The Many are re-becoming the One. Attraction rules instead of separation. But whereas the compassionate Souls of old succeed in drawing their vehicles towards the condition of oneness (brotherhood), the Procrastinators and Selfish by the very inertia of their deed of separativeness are pushed further on this line of separativeness. The tide has turned, but they go on the old way; or rather the then predominating forces of attraction work on them also, but, the attractive pole for them is not the Conscious positive pole of Being, but the unconscious negative pole; avitchi instead of nirvana, unconscious annihilation in Matter instead of conscious reabsorption in Spirit.
Thus the involutionary work of the first period of the cycle, Practical Occultism, became perverted. While the compassionate Souls are beginning the work of Civilization under the guidance of Divine Kings who are teaching them arts, sciences, letters etc., the selfish ones keep repeating the occult 'calls, but now to shadows instead of realities. Active mediumship takes the place of spiritual chelaship, the false astral realms of the real spiritual world; the substitution being mostly an unconscious one, by virtue of the change of polarity having taking place in them, the negative pole having become in almost complete likeness the image of the positive.
This period in the manvantaric cycle corresponds to the middle point of the Atlantean Race, the bottom of the cycle, when the Black and the White Magic faced one another. While the true work of Civilization was in progress in Atlantis (spiritward attraction), the matterward tension brought about the negative shadow of practical occultism and organized religions were born, which, in the very words of Mahatma K.H. constitute "the greatest, the chief cause of nearly two-thirds of the evils that pursue humanity ever since that cause became a power."
In our small centurial cycle with which the present Theosophical Movement is connected the year 1875 corresponds to the middle of the Third Root-Race when the Sons of the Flame, the GREAT BEING, the Holy Tree of Wisdom, incarnated; 1900 to the early Atlantean Race, 1925 to the Middle Atlantean Race.
Now as then the great work to be accomplished is the work of Civilization. Whereas fifty years ago what was most needed were true chelas, now, at least in the plane of action, civilizers are essentially wanted, inspired seers who are able to perceive cultural Archetypes, to go, as Goethe bids us, to the realm of the Mothers, contemplate Platonic Ideas, and having seen, WORK toward the manifestation of the true New Jerusalem on earth. This however will never be done fully unless the potential seer STUDIES at first the Philosophy, in its pure and unadulterated condition. And this
must be made possible. Therefore the two great branches of the Theosophical Movement at present ought to be constituted by those who keep burning the sacred flame of the Philosophy, which is the Immutable Truth of the cycle (the Preservers) - and those who act as Fathers of the civilization-to-be.
And both are essentially one, as Vishnu and Brahma are one, spurred on by the fire of Shiva to become as Brahman, as the Cycle itself.
- Zahaz D. Rudhyar.
Jan. 15, 1926 N.Y.
A FIRST IMPRESSION
One's first impression of Theosophy is not that its teachings are all entirely new, but that they embody many of the things which one has believed for years but never expressed.
Theosophy really changes one's whole view point, gives the real things their true value, and shows how insignificant and worthless are many things which have previously been considered important.
One feels that Theosophy is the biggest and most vital thing in the world today. Its ideals are so high and so practical, and Theosophists really try to live up to their ideals. In the Theosophical Society one comes in contact with people who are working for others in a truly brotherly spirit - they work behind the scenes, so to speak - not for personal aggrandizement, for money or ambition, but simply unselfishly trying to help others and to make the world a happier place in which to live.
To a person who has been trying to find something practical in religion and who has been disappointed, Theosophy opens up an entirely new world. It is so illuminating to find that the Universe is governed by the laws of Karma and Reincarnation, laws which are just and rational, and which explain the meaning of so much in life that has seemed unjust and unreasonable. To be punished for a sin that one has actually committed is very different to being punished because of the whim of an eternal Deity.
Probably one of the strongest appeals which Theosophy makes is that of the ideal of Universal Brotherhood - an ideal which one does not always find predominating in so called Christian churches. There is something so practical about Theosophy, it seems to cover everything in the universe, broaden one's sympathies, helps one to think and open up undreamt of vistas of knowledge to be explored. It opens the door to something broader and larger in life and explains so much that previously one has had to accept on blind faith, never questioning its justice.
People nowadays want freedom of thought, they have gone beyond the stage of mere negative belief and they want to get out of the conventional rut. Here Theosophy fills a great need and offers one a sane philosophy of life showing how man is really "master of his fate."
Theosophy helps one to realize the futility of wasting time over regrets and worrying over material trifles which do not really matter in the ultimate issues of life. - M.H.
MUST FIND REAL CAUSES
Investigation that will redirect educational processes was urged on the Religious Education Association at the convention held in Toronto in mid-March by Dr. Goodwin B. Watson, of Columbia University. He told the final session of the convention bluntly that much of the present talk and planning was futile until research had discovered the real causes of desirable and undesirable attitudes towards other races and creeds.
From his experience as instructor in educational psychology at Teachers' College, New York, Dr. Watson said that character and good-will did not produce, but rather were effects of attitudes. World-mindedness was not traceable to inborn intelligence and only partially to right information. The causes of deeper attitudes were obscure, and attitudes, he said, were extremely difficult to alter, hence a pressing need for investigation before the force of religious education were loosed too far in any one direction.
Reporting on the confessions of 500 college students as to the experiences which seemed responsible for their attitudes towards other peoples and nationalities,
Dr. Watson listed school experiences, reading material, personal encounters and home attitudes as vital factors in determining attitudes of persons and groups.
"Bright people may be more or less prejudiced than dull people," said the speaker, disposing of the contention that brains make for breadth of sympathy and understanding.
"People who are honest are not necessarily considerate," he said. "People prejudiced about religion may not he prejudiced about the War."
Knowledge, he admitted, did affect feeling, but it had to be well-balanced or antagonism might follow. To learn good about foreigners from a disliked person might have unanticipated effects.
Recent despatches claim that Prof. B.S. Hopkins of the University of Illinois made the discovery of a new element under the name of celium after long researches with specially constructed X-Ray machinery, which he had designed and manufactured for himself. Prof. McLennan of the University of Toronto seemed disinclined to think that the discovery would be of any great profundity in the scientific world. Of the 92 elements less than half a dozen are now unknown to science.
Prof. Lash Miller, head of the department of chemistry at the university here, and an eminent authority upon chemical research, outlined the method by which research workers attempted the discovery of the new elements. There are a total of ninety-two elements which are known to exist. A table has been compiled showing the known properties of the elements. In this the unknown elements show as blanks in a series; but owing to the places at which they occur, science has some indication of the kind of properties such a new element should have. According to Prof. Miller, it is therefore merely a matter of fitting a new discovery into one of these blanks in order to prove that it is a new element.
Of these new elements only a few have great commercial value. Helium is one of the best known of the more recent discoveries. NEON, a comparatively recent discovered element is now used in the manufacture of red lights for motor cars.
GENERAL SECRETARY AT WINNIPEG
Mr. Smythe left here tonight for Regina after a four days stay in Winnipeg. Arriving Wednesday morning, March 31st a public lecture was given the same evening, the audience numbering about 120. The Subject was "The Gospel of Another Chance" and dealt with Reincarnation from an entirely unaccustomed angle. The following evening Mr. Smythe lectured on "St. Paul and Theosophy."
While the audience was not so large as on the previous evening, it was an exceedingly interested one and the meeting lasted considerably over two hours. Friday evening, Saturday afternoon and evening were occupied with Lodge talks, which were also attended by some past members of the Lodge, members of the Federation Lodge and some strangers. The First talk dealt with general Sectional matters; on Saturday afternoon a long and most illuminating talk on the "Secret Doctrine" was given, while the final talk was reserved for questions.
Mr. Smythe's method of dealing with theosophy is unique so far as lecturers to Winnipeg are concerned. He emphasizes its practical application to life, and what is of even greater importance, expounds that philosophy in a language that is intelligible to all. We are deeply grateful for the inspiration which the General Secretary has given us and for the personal sacrifice which, we feel, has been necessary on his part, that this tour might be made possible.
Laurance H. D. Roberts,
President, Winnipeg Lodge.
April 3rd, 1926.
IS THERE SOME SPECIAL BOOK YOU WANT?
But you are not sure of the title, or the author, or even if there is such a book to be had.
Just write me - I am in a position to help you.
W.J. HAYDON, 564 PAPE AVE., TORONTO
THE CANADIAN THEOSOPHIST
THE ORGAN OF THE THEOSOPHICAL SOCIETY
Published on the 15th of every month.
[[ seal here - "There is no Religion Higher than Truth" ]]
- Editor - Albert E. S. Smythe.
- Entered at Toronto General Post-office as second-class matter.
- Subscription, One Dollar a Year.
OFFICERS OF THE T. S. IN CANADA.
- Roy Mitchell, 17 Munro Park Ave., Toronto.
- Mrs. Edith Fielding, 206 E. 27th St., N. Vancouver.
- H. R. Tallman, 71 Ellerbeck Ave., Toronto.
- J. Hunt Stanford, 17 Westmoreland Ave., Toronto.
- Felix A. Belcher, 250 North Lisgar St., Toronto.
- Laurance H. D. Roberts, Suite 5 Cornish Court, 19 Sherbrooke Street, Winnipeg.
- Miss Helena M. Hesson, 324 W. 18th Ave., S. Vancouver.
- Albert E. S. Smythe, 22 West Glen Grove Ave., Toronto 12.
Six bound volumes of The Canadian Theosophist are now available and may be had from the General Secretary's Office for $2 each post free. Title and Index for Volume VI may be had on application with postage.
"The Secret Doctrine" in one volume, $8.50; "The Mahatma Letters" $6; H.P.B.'s Letters to A. P. Sinnett, $6; "Rational Mysticism" by William Kingsland, $4; "The Key to Theosophy" by Madam Blavatsky; are available from the Book Steward, 52 Isabella Street, Toronto. Orders for books should not be sent to the General Secretary.
The General Secretary left for the West On Monday the 29th, intending to remain in Winnipeg from Wednesday till Saturday, April 3rd. He is speaking in the City Hall in Regina at the Forum conducted by Mr. George A. Palmer on Sunday, April 4th. He will be in Calgary from the 5th to the 7th, Vulcan on the 8th and Summerland subsequently, going on to Vancouver, as all Banff members are at present out of town. He will spend a week in Vancouver and two or three days in Victoria, returning by the northern route to Edmonton, where several days will be spent. The later dates have not been definitely arranged at the time of publication.
We desire to call attention to Mr. Jinarajadasa's Quarterly Letter with the note thereto appended. We have had letters stating that reliable information not given in the magazine. [[sic]] All official documents bearing on the Theosophical Society have been published in the magazine, so far as they have been received by us.
The February and March numbers of "Theosophy," to which Mr. B.P. Wadia is a distinguished contributor, have been of particular interest. We also wish to draw attention to the "Beacon," the organ of the work being done by Mrs. Alice Bailey of New York. Excellent judgment has been shown in the selection of early articles of the literature, and the original contributions are both striking and suggestive.
NOMINATIONS AND ELECTIONS
The following nominations have been made for the General Executive: -
- Calgary Lodge - Mr. E.H.L. Knetchtel
- Edmonton Lodge - Mr. R.D. Taylor
- Toronto Lodge - Mr. J. Hunt Stanford, Mr. G.I. Kinman, Mr. G.C. MacIntyre, Mr. Kartar Singh
- West End Lodge, Toronto - Mr. Felix Belcher
As the Constitution requires that the Executive for the Theosophical Society in Canada consist of seven members and as no nominations other than these seven have been received, it is hereby declared that the above nominees are elected and form the Executive for the Theosophical Society in Canada for the year 1926.
The present General Secretary was nominated by St. Thomas, Edmonton and Montreal Lodges. As no other nominations for the office were received, he stands elected again for the coming year.
QUARTERLY LETTER FROM THE VICE-PRESIDENT
Our great jubilee Convention is over. It is, perhaps, only those who were actually present who can appreciate the significance of such a wonderful gathering. I do not know how the Convention affected others, but I know that for myself it was the apotheosis of Theosophy. We have long proclaimed a Brotherhood "without distinction of race, creed, sex, caste or colour." There were some 40 nationalities represented, and among them all the spirit of Brotherhood was strong. The races of the East and the West met and talked and worked in utmost friendliness. The prayers of each living Religion were repeated daily in our great Hall, and members of all faiths were present listening with reverence not only to their own faith, but to other faiths also. There was not the slightest distinction of sex, and all forgot that outer demarcation of souls into men and women, for all were wrapt joyously in the contemplation of great human purposes. In this land of India, with its many rigid divisions of caste, caste during Convention had very little meaning, even to the most rigid of orthodox Hindus, for the spirit of Brotherhood overleapt the barriers of caste.
When H.P.B. came forward as the messenger of the Great White Lodge, it was to offer to the modern world that philosophical Synthesis which has always existed, and which is known as the Ancient Wisdom. She presented the Synthesis in sweeping intellectual concepts, which linked religion, science, philosophy and mysticism. But that Synthesis is never merely of intellectual things, but of all possible types of human action. During her life time, the Theosophical Movement had largely to confine itself to a wide intellectual propaganda to expound the wisdom which it was offering to the world. But, since her passing, her ideals of the great Synthesis have been developed in field after field of action. How many fields are being tilled by Theosophists today were seen in the activities of Convention. In the field of religion, the completion or the laying of the foundation stones of shrines of all the great faiths showed where Theosophists stand now in religion. The meetings on education showed how Theosophists recognize the need for the urgent application of Theosophy to that most vital of human problems. A fine exhibition of International Arts and Crafts and meetings of the International League of Arts and Crafts showed that Theosophists today have entered into another great field of human endeavour. The reports of the T.S. Order of Service revealed in how many ways Theosophists are recognizing how to "love thy neighbour as thyself." Though science did not play a prominent part, yet, the very existence within the Adyar Estate of science laboratories belonging to the National College shows that Theosophists resident at Adyar are not utterly out of touch with that wonderful department of life. Had there been more time, I would have organized an exhibition of models of chemical atoms and compounds as seen by clairvoyance.
Convention throbbed with the realization that Theosophy is not a matter of even the most wonderful of written gospels, but of a tremendous power in human life to change the present world into something more ideal. All who were present at Convention went away with larger visions of the possibilities of "Theosophising" the world. It is to see that vision that we gathered at our Jubilee Convention, and that Convention was a memorable success because we did see the vision for which we came.
As time passes, religion after religion will appear in the world to suit the needs of the changing world. Each of these religions will be given to the world by the World Teacher holding office at the time. But Theosophy is the religion of all the World Teachers of the past, present and the future. As such, the work of the T.S. for the world is something that will never come to its culmination till all mankind is perfected. Each new religion, each new philosophy, each new revelation of the Divine in man, will lead us one stage nearer to understanding what Theosophy truly is in its vast sweep over things of heaven and earth.
At the meeting of the General Council, the Society agreed, with one Section dissenting and three failing to vote, that the Society should offer to the world a
statement of the principles which must underlie a World Religion. I enclose separately those principles, with the comments of the General Council about them. We certainly have to recognize that those are principles not found complete in every religion. But the Theosophist finds them in the religions of the past and the present as the basis of Universal Religion. But Orthodox Christians will object to Clause 4, which teaches the growth of the soul through Reincarnation, just as orthodox Buddhists will object to Clause 2, which presents the conception of a Creator. But the Basic Truths of Religion are what the Theosophist sees, and to be a Theosophist means to be free from the limitations of orthodoxy. There is nothing new in the Basic Truths, and, as you are aware, they have been proclaimed from every platform of every Theosophical Lodge. The only novelty is that we have formally stated the Truths as what must underlie a Universal Religion.
I should like to make quite clear to all that the platform of the T.S. has not in any way been changed. No member of the Society is called upon to accept these principles of Universal Religion, any more than he is called upon to accept any teaching, except that of Universal Brotherhood, which passes as Theosophy. The Three objects of the Society remain exactly the same, and as hitherto an applicant need only endorse the First Object to be admitted as a member. You will remember the decision of the General Council, at its session in Vienna in 1923, to formulate a general statement regarding freedom of belief in the Society. That statement, drawn up by the President and endorsed by the General Council, has been before all members. The freedom of belief assured by that declaration is still the right of every member, for the fact that the T.S. as an organization has thrown its weight to organize a World Religion does not mean that every member is forced to accept its Truths.
If the T.S. is to be a leader in the many movements now attempting to change the world, it cannot sit still and refuse to lead the forces which are slowly breaking down national and religious barriers. Indeed, it is the T.S. that can best give the framework of the World Civilization to come, and we surely serve well by upholding more formally now than in the past the Basic Truths of a World Religion. The many nations of the world are more and more clamoring to dwell in one House of Humanity. The T.S. has the plan for that wonderful House, and we have presented one part of that plan in the Basic Truths. We showed another part of that plan by the way that our 41 National Societies came together in a spirit of perfect Brotherhood, determined to carry on the work of Theosophy into another half century. Surely we can congratulate ourselves on the record of the past and look with enthusiasm into the future.
- C. Jinarajadasa.
February 17th, 1926.
THE QUARTERLY LETTER
Mr. Jinarajadasa occupies almost half his quarterly letter in defending 'the "Basic Truths" which the General Council was so inept as to adopt as an exposition of a Universal creed. Mr. Jinarajadasa points out that the Christians will not accept Clause 4, and the Buddhists will not accept Clause 2. As these two form the vast majority of the religious faiths of the world, it is obvious that the "Basic Truths" only introduce a new cause of dissent among the religious people of our time. It was not necessary to bring in any such formula and compared with the Three Postulates of the Secret Doctrine, it has nothing like the same value as a harmonious approach to the understanding of each by all. The unnecessary is the immoral, and from that point of view the Basic Truths are discordantly immoral. We are no longer invulnerable as a Society. We have a point of attack, and a weak one. We can no longer boast that we have no creed, and instead have to apologize for the inconsistency of professing not to have one, and then of sticking one up with the implication that it is better than any one else's. If anything more had been needed to prove that there is no Master Mind behind the present management of the T.S., the "Basic Truths" would supply it. The "Basic Truths" will pass away like all other creeds and yield to the reason-
able experience of the ages, but we have the load of sacerdotalism still to fight, the incorrigible sacerdotal mind with its creed-making tendencies and its importunate pigeon-holing.
There is another train of thought in the Vice-President's quarterly epistle which the wise will note. He speaks of H.P.B. having offered the world "that philosophical Synthesis which has always existed, and which is known as the Ancient Wisdom." One hardly thinks that Mr. Jinarajadasa meant exactly this. It sounds too much as though he intended to mislead. "She presented the Synthesis in sweeping intellectual concepts, which linked religion, science, philosophy and mysticism. But that Synthesis is never merely of intellectual things, but of all possible types of human action. "During her lifetime," he proceeds, "the Theosophical Movement had largely to confine itself to a wide intellectual propaganda to expound the wisdom which it was offering to the world. But, since her passing, her ideals of the great Synthesis have been developed in field after field of action. How many fields are being tilled by Theosophists today were seen in the activities of Convention." It is at least satisfactory to find that in the list of these activities Mr. Jinarajadasa does not include several outstanding organizations usually allied in the popular imagination with Mrs. Besant and Mr. Leadbeater.
THE QUARTERLY LETTER FROM THE VICE PRESIDENT OF
That "eternal vigilance is the price of liberty" is once more evident after a careful analysis of the latter half of Mr. Jinarajadasa's letter. He asserts that "the Society agreed that the Society should offer to the world a statement of the principles which must underlie a World Religion." This is not correct. The National Secretaries may have agreed, but where did they get authority to commit the Society, without its consent and contrary to the constitution of the Society, to the formal approval by the Society of a creed - no matter how excellent it may be?
Mr. Jinarajadasa states that "the only novelty is that we have formally stated the Truths as to what must underlie a Universal Religion." But it is too vital a novelty to pass unchallenged. He tells us that members are still free to believe what they please. True, but that is not the point. The point is that in the past, in accordance with our constitution, public audiences and readers of our literature are constantly reminded that "no statement that may be made has any authority beyond its own appeal." This is to be changed. The more formal statements proposed can only mean that in future the Theosophical Society does authorize speakers and writers to make certain statements.
Let us suppose that the statements so authorized are tacitly, if not explicitly accepted by all - which is not the case as Mr. Jinarajadasa admits - what assurance have we - if this is allowed now, that later on some other statements not so acceptable will be foisted upon the Society by a majority of National Secretaries.
It is utterly specious to stress the reasonableness of the proposed "Basic Truths." The real crux is not the reasonableness but the opening of the door to the adoption of a creed which H.P.B. declares has been the ruin of all previous attempts to do what the T.S. was created for.
If this door is not kept firmly closed "the result can only be that the Society will drift off on to some sandbank of thought or another, and there remain a stranded carcass to molder and die," as H.P.B. prophesied.
- Felix A. Belcher.
"A SIMILAR EVENT IS TO TAKE PLACE."
Mrs. Besant, President, T.S., interviewed by the Associated Press of India regarding the rumored proclamation of Mr. J. Krishnamurti as World Teacher, made the following statement:
Similar statements were made more than once in London papers as to my supposed intentions while I was in London; and when I said nothing, the imaginative authors stated that I had postponed the announcement. As a similar statement seems to be now cabled to London, I had better state, once for all, the bare facts
which must lie at the root of these statements, which hitherto I have left unnoticed.
In 1909, I accepted from their father the guardianship of two young brothers, promising to be responsible for their education. I have occasionally stated - as bidden by Madam H.P. Blavatsky, who brought Theosophy to me in this life through her wonderful book, The Secret Doctrine - that I was a disciple of the same Indian Rishi whose messenger she was. My reason for accepting the guardianship of the boys was that I was told that the elder, J. Krishnamurti, had been selected to give his body as vehicle for the World-Teacher on His approaching Coming, if the lad proved to be worthy of the privilege, when he reached manhood.
In 1910, he wrote down teachings received from his Teacher during the sleep of the body, teachings which were published in the well-known little book, At the Feet of the Master. On December 28th, 1911; a remarkable overshadowing of the young boy took place in Benares, and a hall full of the members of the T.S. prostrated themselves before him. We kept the event as quiet as we could, but rumors got abroad, causing uncomfortable followings of him about the grounds of our house, and manifestations of respect, leading me to return as soon as I could to Madras, as I feared, quite unnecessarily, that they might give rise to conceit.
The brothers were educated privately in London, and more than fulfilled the hopes cherished for them.
Last summer, in Holland, I mentioned to a large audience (in a Camp held by members of an Order to which only those are admitted who believe in the Coming of a World Teacher) that J. Krishnamurti was the chosen vehicle, a fact already largely recognized among them in consequence of his speeches and writings. I suppose this was the basis of the inaccurate statements made subsequently in the London papers. I have never had any idea of "proclaiming him as Messiah." Modern psychology recognizes some of the subtler and rarer aspects of consciousness, from the cases of the influence of one mind over another through higher cases of inspiration - such as those of "prophets" to complete temporary change of "personality." I believe, with many of the early Christians, that the World Teacher, named by them the Christ, assumed, at the stage of the Gospel story called the Baptism, the body of a disciple, Jesus, to carry on His earthly work at that time. A similar event is to take place among us. Without inflicting the reasons for my belief on this occasion - I have given dozens of lectures on the subject - I will merely add that which may have given rise to this telegram.
Mr. Krishnamurti was lecturing, on December 28th, 1925, to a very large audience under the Banyan Tree (at Adyar). He was concluding his lecture, speaking of the World-Teacher, with the words: "He comes to lead us all to that perfection where there is eternal happiness: He comes to lead us and He comes to those who have not understood, who have suffered, who are unhappy, who are unenlightened. He comes to those who want, who desire, who long, and -
There was a slight start, and a Voice of penetrating sweetness rang out through his lips:
"I come to those who want sympathy, who want happiness, who are longing to be released, who are longing to find happiness in all things. I come to reform, and not to tear down: not to destroy, but to build."
The meeting shortly after broke up in silence. Probably some account of this filtered out. That the World-Teacher
spoke through the then speaker I believe. Since 1909, as said above, I have known that he was chosen as the vehicle, and I
expect an ever-increasing tenancy of the selected body by Him for whom it has been prepared. I believe that we are at the beginning of a New Age, a new civilization, as has occurred five times already in the Aryan race - in Central Asia, Egypt, Persia, Greece and Palestine - as well as before in human evolution.
- Annie Besant, P., T.S.
The above message appeared in the daily press with a date line of Madras, January 12, either in whole or part. Very full accounts were sent out from New York, it is understood on the authority of Captain Jones, an Australian, who is look-
ing after the press propaganda there, and other accounts have issued from London. Even London, Ontario, has its press agent, and a despatch appeared from that place, prepared, we are told, by a member of the Order of The Star in the East, stating that Mr. Krishnamurti, in charge of Bishop Cooper, would start a campaign in Canada from there.
In "The Voice of the Silence" we read:
"The WISE ONES tarry not in pleasure-grounds of senses.
"The WISE ONES heed not the sweet-tongued voices of illusion.
"Seek for him who is to give thee birth, in the Hall of Wisdom, the Hall which lies beyond, wherein all shadows are unknown, and where the light of truth shines with unfailing glory.
"That which is uncreate abides in thee, Disciple, as it abides in that Hall. If thou woud'st reach it and blend the two, thou must divest thyself of thy dark garments of illusion. Stifle the voice of flesh, allow no image of the senses to get between its light and thine, that thus the twain may blend in one. And having learnt thine own Ajnyana (ignorance or non-wisdom) flee from the Hall of Learning. This Hall is dangerous in its perfidious beauty, is needed but for thy probation. Beware, Lanoo, lest dazzled by illusive radiance thy Soul should linger and be caught in its deceptive light.
"This light shines from the jewel of the Great Ensnarer (Mara). The senses it bewitches, blinds the mind, and leaves the unwary an abandoned wreck."
AMONG THE LODGES
Three members of the Summerland Lodge, Messrs Logie and Weaver, and Miss Edith Turner, have resigned in order to join the Canadian Federation and form a new lodge. The Summerland Lodge will continue its work as usual.
The North Vancouver Lodge voted on the resolution to abandon The Theosophical Society in Canada, and by a vote of eight to two, agreed to do so. When the Charter is sent in, they will he demitted to the Adyar jurisdiction.
The number of nominations this year for the General Executive of the Theosophical Society in Canada equals the number of members required for the Executive Committee. A vote is therefore rendered unnecessary and he usual ballots will not be sent out.
FELLOWS AND FRIENDS
How good work spreads is illustrated by the publication of the French magazine "Theosophie," on the lines of "Theosophy," the organ of the United Lodge of Theosophists, Los Angeles, California. Following this "El Loto Blanco," published in Barcelona, Spain, has been publishing translations of articles by H.P.B., and also an article criticizing "The World Religion" under the caption "Lo Que olvidamos."
Mr. Albert E. S. Smythe spoke in Overbrook, Philadelphia on the 22nd and 24th March on the subjects of "St. Paul and the Galatians" and "The Casting Out of Fear." He also spoke in New York in the Waldorf Hotel on the 26th, 27th and 28th, under the auspices of the John Murray Foundation.
The letters signed Aseka are by a well known New York Theosophist and we are privileged to have the opportunity of republishing them with the hope of interesting many who have been attracted by the mere technical treatment of the subject. The every day colloquial and common sense view that Aseka takes has been of great help already to many readers.
The General Secretary, when in New York had the pleasure of meeting Mr. L. W. Rogers, president of the American Theosophical Society, who has charge of Mrs. Besant's tour on this continent. He stated that Mrs. Besant's visit to toronto had been tentatively arranged for November 5, 6 and 7. This would probably be made definite about or before May 1.
Mrs. Garside, secretary St. Thomas Lodge, while in Toronto attending Ontario Educational Conference paid a visit to headquarters at 52 Isabella St.
"THEY LIKE SHEEP"
"We are not interested in, and do not intend to study either the Secret Doctrine or the Mahatma Letters." This was the statement made recently by the president of a T.S. lodge in a city in Pennsylvania. It was addressed to one who had made the suggestion to organize a class for the study of Mahatma and Blavatsky writings. This attitude seems to be very common among the T.S. lodges in the American section. The travesties that are paraded in the name of Theosophy are preferred to the rugged, honest fearless teachings of H.P.B. and her instructors. It may not be a matter of hostility so much as that of delusion, ignorance and a misunderstanding of the history of the movement, and of the status of those who brought this ageless philosophy to this continent in the last quarter of the last century.
There are two embodied entities who are chiefly responsible for this deplorable state of things in the Theosophical Society. First and foremost is Charles Webster Leadbeater. Second, although more prominently known, is Annie Besant. The first mentioned came into contact with Theosophy through the late A.P. Sinnett. In 1884, Mr. Leadbeater was investigating spiritualism. He was a clerk-in-orders of the Church of England. He had attended many of the seances of William Eglington, a medium to whom reference is made by Mahatma Koot Hoomi, in the Mahatma letters to A.P.S. One of Eglington's so-called spirit guides was named "Ernest", and it is related that at one of these seances, Ernest assured Leadbeater that he knew of the existence of the Masters, and intimated his readiness to deliver a letter to the Master K.H.
The 7th letter of the volume of Letters from the Masters of the Wisdom, published at Adyar, in 1919, is one from the Master K.H., addressed to Leadbeater. I repeat it in full: - "Last spring - March 3rd - you wrote a letter to me, and entrusted it to "Ernest." Though the paper itself never reached me - nor was it ever likely to, considering the nature of the messenger, its contents have. I did not answer it at the time, but sent you a warning through Upasika" (H.P.B.)
In that message of yours it was said that since reading Esot. Bud: and Isis your "one great wish had been to place yourself under me as a chela, that you might learn more of the truth." I understand from Mr. S., you went on, "that it would be almost impossible to become a chela without going out to India." You hoped to be able to do that in a few years, though for the present ties of gratitude bind you to remain in this country, etc. I now answer the above and your other questions.
1 - It is not necessary that one should be in India during the seven years of probation. A chela can pass them anywhere.
2 - To accept any man as a chela does not depend on my personal will. It can only be the result of one's personal merit, and exertions in that direction. Force any one of the "Masters" you may happen to choose; do good works in his name and for the love of mankind; be pure and resolute in the path of righteousness (as laid out in our rules); be honest and unselfish; forget your self but to remember the good of other people - and you will have forced that "master" to accept you.
So much for candidates during periods of the undisturbed progress of your Society. There is something more to be done, however, when Theosophy, the Cause of Truth is, as at the present moment, on its stand for life or death before the tribunal of public opinion - that most flippantly cruel, prejudiced and unjust of all tribunals. There is also the collective karma of the caste you belong to, to be considered. It is undeniable that the cause you have at heart is now suffering owing to the dark intrigues, the base conspiracy of the Christian clergy and missionaries against the society. They will stop before nothing to ruin the reputation of the Founders. Are you willing to atone for their sins? Then go to Adyar for a few months. "The ties of gratitude" will not be severed, nor even become weakened for an absence of a few months, if the step be explained plausibly to your relative. He who would shorten the years of probation has to make sacrifices for Theosophy. Pushed by malevolent hands to the very edge of a precipice, the
Society needs every man and woman strong in the cause of truth. It is by doing in the cause of truth. It is by doing noble actions, and not by determining that they shall be done, that the fruits of meritorious actions are reaped. Like the "true man" of Carlyle, who is not to be seduced by ease, "difficulty, abnegation, martyrdom, death are the allurements that act" during the hours of trial on the heart of a true chela.
You ask me what rules I must observe during this time of probation, and how soon I might venture to hope that it could begin." I answer: you have the making of your own future in your own hands, as shown above, and every day you may be weaving its woof. If I were to demand that you should do one thing, or the other, instead of simply advising, I would be responsible for every effect that might flow from the step, and you acquire but a secondary merit. Think, and you will see that this is true. So cast the lot yourself into the lap of justice, never fearing but that its response will be absolutely true. Chelaship is an educational as well as a probationary stage and the chela alone can determine whether it shall end in adeptship or failure. Chelas, from a mistaken idea of our system, too often watch and wait for orders, wasting precious time which should be taken up with personal effort. Our cause needs missionaries, devotees, agents, even martyrs, perhaps. But it cannot demand of any man to make himself either. So now choose and grasp your own destiny - and may our Lord's the Tathagata's memory, aid you to decide for the best."
In letter No. 9 of this same volume, K.H. makes the following statements: "sigh not for chelaship; pursue not that, the dangers and hardships of which are unknown to you. Verily, many are the chelas offering themselves to us, and as many have failed this year as were accepted on probation. Chelaship unveils the inner man, and draws forth the dormant virtue as well as the dormant vice. Latent vice begets active sins and is often followed by insanity. Be pure, virtuous and lead a holy life and you will be protected. But remember, he who is not as pure as a young child, better leave chelaship alone. The process of self-purification is not the work of a moment nor of a few months, but of years, nay extending over a series of lives."
In letter No. 10 the same writer observes "that selfishness and the want of self-sacrifice are the greatest impediments on the path of adeptship.
Leadbeater had seven years of contact with Theosophy before the passing out of H.P.B. He went to India, and was of assistance to Olcott in the lecturing tours of the president of the T.S., and reference is made in the recently published volume of H.P.B.'s letters to Sinnett, of the work done by Leadbeater and the value placed upon it at that time by Olcott. This is the man who advises students to read the works of Annie Besant, and his own, and suggests that the Secret Doctrine be left till the last, and consulted only as a work of reference.
As for Mrs. Besant, her first connection with the T.S. movement was in 1888, and is very vividly recorded in her autobiography. A woman of brilliant attainments and intellectual genius, the magnitude of the Secret Doctrine fascinated her, and during the short period she was associated with H.P.B., (something less than three years), she was an apt scholar, and her writings during that experience may be regarded as being tolerably correct conceptions of Theosophy. But the shallowness of her understanding, and of a certain section of the group of students officially connected with H.P.B., began soon to manifest itself. The earliest evidence was in her efforts, and those of her accomplices, to tinker with the Secret Doctrine, which had already beets approved and hall marked by the Masters K.H. and M. The volumes of that work that are at present sponsored by Mrs. Besant, contain thousands of minor and major alterations from the original edition. Many pedantic, many silly and trivial, but alas, many that are grievous perversions and distortions.
Perceiving the Supreme Soul in all beings and all beings in the Supreme Soul, in offering his own soul in sacrifice, he identifies himself with the Being who shines in his own splendour." - Manu xii. 90, 91.
THE NEW THEOSOPHY
Who wouldn't be a devotee of up-to-date Theosophy?
Which supersedes all cults and creeds and every known philosophy.
It's students scan the cosmic plan, and sub-divide the Trinity
And may with ease obtain degrees that certify divinity.
I do not speak, I haven't the cheek
About the scheme original -
Divulged to us by H.P.B. which we now safely pigeon-hole.
We now have saints whose vision paints a future more fantastical;
And we can fool the golden rule and make it more elastical.
The "Secret Doctrine" now we mock; its study-self-revealing -
Made plain to us with painful fuss the things we're now concealing.
It might be Truth? for us Vermouth! that soothes us like a zither -
The wine distilled from pages filled with "Man, Whence, How, and Whither."
It dulls our brains, but entertains and gives us dreams entrancing
And proves without the slightest doubt the race is sure advancing
Since our new Star, our avatar was once a moon-chain chimpanzee
And arhats good, near Buddhahood, are here as any simp can see.
Let zealots rant, intolerant, about our new Theology
We'll let them see that H.P.B. missed points in sociology
That we don't lie is proven by our splendid popularity.
Clairvoyantly we always see occasion for hilarity.
In vestments dressed, upon our chest a golden cross we dangle
Poor sinners come; we haw and hum - untwist the ether's tangle.
A mystic word by devas heard - a magic invocation!
And sinners go, now pure as snow, assured of consecration.
Our modern stuff is never rough - we make occultism simple!
To qualify you simply buy a share in our new temple
In Sidney Bay; and watch and pray for Alcy's transformation.
From callow youth to Lord of Truth - Our Christ by acclamation!
So you'll agree, a devotee of up-to-date Theosophy
Is far ahead of one that's fed on H.P.B.'s philosophy
For he may scan the cosmic plan and subdivide the Trinity
And may with ease obtain degrees that certify divinity.
- D. MacKinnon
"Nature has linked all parts of her Empire together by subtle threads of magnetic sympathy, and there, there is mutual correlation even between a star and a man;"
- The Mahatma Letters.
"Thou art in the tree, Thou art in its leaves.
Thou art space, Thou art time,
Thou art fasting, Thou art wisdom,
Thou alone art, Thou alone art."
- Adi Granth.
"Men do not become saints and sinner by merely calling themselves so.
The recording angels take with them a record of man's acts.
It is he himself soweth, and he himself eateth."
-The Sikh Japji.
"The sun and moon, O Lord, are Thy lamps;
The firmament Thy salver;
The orbs of the stars the pearls enchased in it.
The perfume of the sandal is Thine incense,
The wind is Thy fan,
All the forests are Thy flowers, O Lord of Light."
- The Sikh Sohila.