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Re: K. Paul Johnson on HPB, the Mahatmas, Buddhism and Tibet

May 07, 1998 07:27 AM
by Dallas TenBroeck

May 7th 1998

        Re:  Tantras

Dallas offers:

As far as I know there are two broad categories (whether these be
of Hindu or Tibetan origin) There are those of the "Right-hand
Path," and those of the Left-hand Path."  The distinction between
the two lies, as I understand it, in the direction in which
information is given.

Do they emphasize the power and control of the INDIVIDUALITY (the
True Inner Ego, tutored by the HIGHER SELF -- which leads to the
development in full of the Mind, and complete knowledge of
"everything" and Wisdom, which is discrimination in practice, or
brotherhood), or,

Do they emphasize the psychic powers of the Personality (the
temporary seat of consciousness of this incarnation, rooted in,
and attached, to this present physical and astral body and its
associated memories and habits) ?  This distinction is to be
found in THE SECRET DOCTRINE,  Vol. 2, pp. 109-10,
and this is further elaborated by references on pages :
(SD II 79-80, 93-4,  I 233, 570-573 to mention only a few.)

Tantra means literally: "Rule," or "Ritual."  and the ceremonies
that are connected with the endeavor to develop either psychical
or spiritual knowledge and the powers concomitant with such
development.  Those who are attracted by the personal development
that gives selfish personal power are said to follow the
"Left-hand" path -- it  is also said that such personal powers
are extinguished at the death of the body.  It is said that in
succeeding rebirths the tendency towards such personal
re-acquisition remains, and the self-seeking person seeks to
reanimate and re-obtain such personal powers for personal use and
aggrandizement.  They are said to be almost completely selfish,
and intend to use such powers as they acquire on the psychic
plane for their own use, enjoyment and domination over others who
are weaker than they are.  They need companionship of the sort
that provides them with a kind of "psychic food," and thus they
attract to themselves "disciples" who are deluded into believing
that the "psychic" and selfish, is in fact the "spiritual."

Those who desire to purify their personalities so that the
Universal Spiritual Light may shine through and illuminate them,
while still living on "Earth," follow the tantras and rules of
the "Right-hand path."  These powers are noble, altruistic,
unselfish, tolerant, and benevolent.  They may not be used in any
way for self, or they are "lost."  The tendency to seek for such
knowledge and Wisdom is said not to "perish" at the death of the
present physical body and personality, but persist, as
tendencies, to succeeding incarnations, and there, are picked up
and further progress is continued through self-induced and
self-devised ways.

Technically the tantras and the practitioners of the "right-hand
path are denominated "Dakshinacharis."  Those of the Left are
called "Vamanacharis."
In early volumes of THEOSOPHIST correspondence explains this more
fully.  References can be given if desired.

In THE THEOSOPHICAL GLOSSARY  (HPB) see pp. 319, 32, 206 58 305 .

HPB LETTERS TO AP Sinnett p. 241 also refers to this,... see also
SD I 368fn.

The Buddhist (Tibetan) and Hindu "schools" use different
terminologies, but essentially their teachings parallel each
other closely.

The subject is enormous, and this is only a brief summary.

> From: "Jerry Schueler" <>
> Date: Thursday, May 07, 1998 6:30 AM
> Subject: Re: K. Paul Johnson on HPB, the Mahatmas, Buddhism and Tibet

>>    DALLAS :
>>Very few "Western" visitors can distinguish one Tibetan
>>from another.
>>This comment is made because very few know enough Tibetan to
>>directly question their sources.
>Correct, but there are some general teaching, such as the three
>bodies of Buddha, that are accepted by all Tibetan schools.
>Actually, probably the biggest difference between schools is
>Jerry S.
>>For instance:  Can a distinction be traced between the highly
>>philosophical precepts of the several Mahayana Schools, and the
>>various Bhons and Tantrik schools where physiolgical and
>>practices are outlined ?  The latter have nothing to do with
>>enhancement of the enthical/moral man's disciplines in daily
>>life -- that play so profound a part in the Mahayana Schools --
>>the knowledge of,  control of, and elevtion of the
>Yes, of course such a disctinction can be made, and has been
>made in print by many modern writers. And you are absolutely
>wrong with your last statement, which is a typical Theosophical
>statement made by people who read HPB but do not read
>the Tantras. Even HH the Dali Lama studies and appreciates
>and teaches the Tantras. I thought the same way until I began
>reading the Tibetan books that now flooed the market. Tibetan
>Tantra is not Hindu Tantra, and HPB was against Hindu Tantras
>which emphasize power. I am not sure from her writings that she
>ever understood the difference, and so I am uncertain that she
>was ever intitiated or taught anything at all about Tibetan
>which are vastly different from the Hindu. She just uses the
>"tantra" without distinction, and her readers continue this
>>The Great Adepts do not advertise, nor do they go in search of
>>visitors or of converts.
>Is writing a book "advertisment?"  Is a student's book a form
>of advertisment? If they just sit in meditation, how do you
>think others are able to find them?  I think your statement is
>a bit naive. Even Jesus went in search of his disciples, and had
>to talk them into leaving their families and jobs.
>>Their message is what HPB published.
>>The "Mahatma Letters" makes their methods and intent plain.
>The Masters behind the MLs are only one small school and
>do not represent all Adepts. Their teaching on abstinance,
>for example, shows how narrow their views are.
> >As
>>said in "Mahatma Letters" they can easily conceal themselves
>>such is needed) in the vast wastes of the trackless, barren
>>mountain environment that the Himalayas are.  They do not live
>>be admired or approached by anyone who has not "earned" that
>>privilege by showing that they have undersood, and are able to
>>apply to their personal living the precepts and disciplines
>>are outlined in THE VOICE OF THE SILENCE.  I only repeat what
>>and They have said in several places.
>I am not disagreeing with what you say, but I think you are
>it all out of context. Her Adepts were just one small school,
and what
>is said for them does not apply to all Adepts.
>>Curiosity attracts -- confusion. And more confusion is created
>>the minds of those who do not yet know how to distinguish the
>>philosophy of altruism from the attractions of the many and
>>various kinds of selfishness and ambition.
>>The evaluation of these things is always made by ones' self.
>Agreed, although I have to also agree with Buddha that some
>confusion and doubt is healthy in order to keep us grounded.
>Please answer this: Is Theosophy and the modern Theosophical
>movement a "philosophy of altruism" alone, or is it more than
>Jerry S.

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