RE: Theos-World History of ideas, and evidence for masters
Oct 15, 2001 07:14 PM
Saturday, October 13, 2001
The historical narrative you send is known to some of us.
However there is a depth that remains to be plumbed and which my
earlier reply suggested.
The difficult and strange transition from "head learning" [facts
details of events, sequences, etc.] represent the superficial and
bare bones of study.
To these one must add the causative side.
To grasp this causative side one has to learn to distinguish
between the names assumed (such as the Kings) and the real Sages
who may have used them at time and in a situation where newcomers
to the great philosophy of theosophy had to be gradually let to
see that the "spiritualism" of those early days was only a
shadow, a film, a veil of the real forces and existences behind
Ask yourself : What was being taught? What was the condition of
the pupils in those days? How were they to be led from the
wonder viewing of seances and phenomena to the fact that there
were two broad divisions of powerful and invisible entities
behind the scenes. There were on one hand the shades of dead
persons whose personalities as Kama-rupas lived on the Astral
Plane, and there were the wise ADEPTS, whose INDIVIDUALITIES had
transcended a million-fold the shams and personal expressions of
This cannot be done in a month's research. One has to carefully
read the sequence of information that was released to the early
students: Olcott, WWW, and others by H P B and the Adepts whom
she represented. She was the one who directed and controlled as
needed the "Kings" and the statements they made. The confusion
with Betanelly you will find the "Masters" referring to later, as
a test of karma that related to H P B. We are not given a total
insight into the causes of the events of those days. We see
fragments and our active brain-minds tend to try to speculate and
theorize. But what value has that ? There are many unfinished
fragments. Those relate to persons. The Philosophy of Theosophy
is monolithic. It stands from first to last as a single coherent
and logical whole . [If you look at S D I 272-3, you will find
described there the process by which it (as a record of history)
as well as a record of laws and facts in Nature came to be tested
verified and recorded.]
Let us pass on to the review of the developing presentation of
THEOSOPHY. Take the early articles in THE BANNER OF LIGHT in
Boston. Then the "failure of "Poor Brown." This followed his
refusal to heed the warnings H P B gave to him. Following that,
came the need for creating a fresh "society." The next need was
some kind of literature or text which members of that Society
could read, discuss and learn from. Thus came the writing of
In ISIS UNVEILED it is made plain that there are a number of
powerful but invisible entities that exist on the Astral, and
other (to us), invisible planes. Some of these entities are
"evil." They tend to destroy and prey on the ignorant, the
fearful and the wildly curious. Others are Wise and "Good." It
is clear that the "Good" have more power than the evil, and this
is because the whole trend of Natural evolution is towards
developing the Spiritual nature of Man (by his own efforts and
not by the imposition of any exterior discipline or rules of
conduct) -- and not his selfish, personal and isolationist
vicious and temporary nature as a kind of superior animal.
You will not be able to determine the CAUSES from those letters
and early articles because those are not made fully clear, one
can only say that following the publishing of ISIS UNVEILED a
rush of questions and correspondence poured in asking for more
details. A magazine was needed so that many more explanations
and teachings could be advanced.
It was until 1879 in Bombay that such a journal (named THE
THEOSOPHIST) was published.
The early history of the Theosophical endeavor could be traced
superficially by students in such books as
A MODERN PANARION
H. P. B. SPEAKS ( 2 volumes) (T P H )
LETTERS FROM THE MASTERS OF WISDOM (2 volumes) (T P H )
OLD DIARY LEAVES ( 6 Vols) (Olcott -- T P H )
ESOTERIC BUDDHISM ( Sinnett -- T P H )
THE OCCULT WORLD ( Sinnett -- T P H )
THE MAHATMA LETTERS
H P Blavatsky's LETTERS TO A. P. SINNETT
REMINISCENCES (Countess Wachmeister)
THE THEOSOPHIST ( T P H )
THE THEOSOPHICAL MOVEMENT ( 1875 - 1925 )
But the real effort was to redirect everyone's attention to such
1. the immortality of the Human EGO, the SPIRITUAL IMMORTAL SELF,
2. the UNIVERSAL PLANE OF CAUSES, (from the ATOM to the
3. the LAWS, RULES and Regulations of Kosmos, Earth and Man,
4. the UNIVERSAL URGE to progress and the EVOLUTION of all
5. the sameness of all basic teachings common at the root of all
6. The possibility of reaching SUPREME PERFECTION for Man,
7. the fact of the existence of an undying Race of Wise SAGES who
preserve the knowledge and wisdom of our world and universe.
For this to be effective, the history of the development of
Intelligence, of universal evolution and specifically, of Human
progress had to be traced from traditions, literature and lore of
the past, as well as evidence taken from the discoveries of
modern science and thought.
The period between the publishing of ISIS UNVEILED in 1877 and
the publishing of The SECRET DOCTRINE in 1888 brought out many
questions regarding these matters and the early issues of the
magazines THEOSOPHIST, PATH, LUCIFER, The THEOSOPHICAL FORUM, and
the VAHAN show the researcher how much was to be made clear in
the 1888 volumes of The SECRET DOCTRINE
Summing this up Michael Gomes has made available a survey of the
literature, letters articles and books published on Theosophy or
about Theosophical Notables for the period of the 19th Century.
This book is entitled:
THEOSOPHY IN THE NINETEENTH CENTURY: An Annotated Bibliography.
(Garland Publishing, New York, 1994)
It is in the articles by H P B and by Wm. Q, Judge that we find
the HEART DOCTRINE or the application of Theosophical doctrines
discussed and illustrated.
In 1889 Mme. Blavatsky published two books:
The KEY TO THEOSOPHY -- in this by means of dialog she reviews
the main Theosophical doctrines.
The VOICE OF THE SILENCE -- in this the practical aspect of
Theosophical doctrines is offered -- it is the HEART DOCTRINE.
Theosophy offers the concept that the human pilgrims may
eventually raise themselves to the level of all-knowingness that
appears to be the level of competence of the "Masters of Wisdom."
They are described in the pages of The SECRET DOCTRINE so that
any one who reads may be able to visualize the nature of their
work in and for Nature. Perhaps the best description of this
will be found in The SECRET DOCTRINE Vol. I pp 207-0210.
I trust this may prove of some help,
Sent: Saturday, October 13, 2001 7:26 AM
Subject: History of ideas, and evidence for masters
Dear Dallas, and all others on the list,
To gain more understanding of the background of the Master
think special attention should be given to the first appearance
Masters, as John King and later Serapis Bye (of the Brotherhood
Luxor) that asked Olcott to invest in Blavatsky's that time
Beta Nelly's investment scemes. And notice how this has evolved
the current theosophical claims of the Masters "that watch over
John King was a spirit guide (and soon also John King's
Katie) channeled by Jennie and Nelson Holmes.
The "Kings", father and daughter, gained much notoriety from an
incident. It appeared that the Holmes' had employed Katie King as
than just a spirit guide: the elderly Robert Dale Owen
claimed publicly that the jewellery he had been giving "Katie
via the Holmes, had turned up in the possession of a woman by the
of Eliza White, who acknowledged that she had been employed by
Holmes' to impersonate the spirit.
Yet Writing in 1875, Blavatsky claimed her own association with
mysterious John King :
[T]he spirit John King is very fond of me, and I am fonder of him
of anything on earth. He is my only friend, and if I am indebted
anyone for the radical change in my ideas of life, my efforts and
on, it is to him alone ...
Blavatsky apparently attempted to rehabilitate the reputation of
Philadelphian Spiritualism - or at least so she had said at the
It is during this period, however, that a subtle readjustment in
explaining Spiritualist phenomena can be discerned in Olcott:
Try to get private talk with "John King" - he is an initiate, and
frivolities of speech and action are meant to cover serious
There can be little doubt that Olcott's references to King's
as an "initiate" were mediated to Olcott by Blavatsky. This shift
imaging the spirit entities as discarnate humans of no specific
religious hue or status, to conceiving of them as in some sense
spiritually adept is evidence of early Blavatskian revisionism.
the middle of 1875, Blavatsky would assign the impetus for the
inception of Spiritualism, and indeed the governance and
esoteric orders as a whole, to a band of living adepts she called
An attempt in consequence of orders received from T*** B***
Bey?] through P*** [an elemental?] personating J. K. [John
Ordered to begin telling the public the truth about the phenomena
their mediums. And now my martyrdom will begin! I will have all
Spiritualists against me in addition to the Christians & the
Thy Will, oh M:. [Master? Morya? ] be done!
Olcott's occult tutelage passed from Tuitit Bey to Serapis Bey at
very early stage. From the middle of 1875 until the latter part
1879, Olcott received many Masters letters' from Serapis,
concentrated volleys, at other times only intermittently.
regular mail (postmarked from Philadelphia and Albany), the first
several letters are in the main unremarkable and concern
with relatively mundane details of Blavatsky's and Olcott's
life. The central topics appear to be Blavatsky's financial woes
her by now failed second - and bigamist - marriage to the
At one time Serapis exhorted Olcott to approach relatives of his
divorced wife for money for the sake of the Cause'; at another he
attempted to involve Olcott in highly questionable business deals
Betanelly, Blavatsky's erstwhile husband. Serapis' assured
that his "distant future is at Boston" and that "there are
the future in store for Betanelly". In fact, there is little
Serapis' self-revelation which would justify Theosophical claims
with the emergence of Blavatsky's Masters a new spiritual
It seems to me however that in later life Blavatsky herself
do away with the Master/staging fiction. One finds hardly mention
the Masters for example in the Voice of Silence, and much less
the earlier master letters to Sinnet would let one expect, in the
This has however not stopped theosophists to instead more and
expand on the Master myth.
Diana Eck in her "A New Religious America", mentions religious
tolerance by accepting each religion for what it is. This is
put slightly different with theosophy it seems, that claims
to be the one that knows the "true" origine off "all" religions,
is really "theosophy".
What I wonder also is how this is (from the perspective of the
of ideas and the underlying message, that is the inner attitude
creates) works out with theosophy , where the emphasis is "not
so much" on one source, or a God , but more on an elusive
beings called Masters , and one has to "wait" till one is ready,
"they" contact you?
See also ; Occult Historiography, and the Invention of the
Foundations of Theosophical Thinking -and From late 19th century
constructionism to the here-and-now.
click ; http://www.unet.univie.ac.at/~a7502210/index.html
Wed, 10 Oct 2001 15:44:24 -0700
Subject: RE: historical evidence for masters.
Body: Sunday, October 07, 2001
The only way any one can determine the verity in any statement,
person or system is to study what they write.
The "touchstone" is always interior to us.
Theosophy holds that the SPIRIT (representing, law, continuity,
truth, brotherhood and all the virtues is UNIVERSAL.
A portion of this SPIRIT is interior to each of us, as to all
other beings. Admittedly this is not easy to grasp as we have
been educated into a materialistic, mechanistic, and totally
physical "world-plane." Even our religions are materialistic.
But we sense that that view is not entirely correct. Why is that?
What we perceive here on this plane, called physical matter, is
the FORM that these many 'SPIRITS" use to manifest, to show
themselves and their intelligence, at some level, here.
In a cold winter evening, our warm breath becomes visible as a
condensed cloud of water vapor when we breathe out. The
temperature variations allow this, and our breath for a little
while become visible from its usual unseen condition. There are
many analogetic phenomena to this .
The historical evidence for the existence of the WISE as a body
of ancient and venerable Sages has always existed. Every
religion traces its sources to a reformer who was WISE. The fact
is, if one wishes to, one can compare all religious sources, and
discover if it is true that they are in fact almost identical.
It is better that you do the work yourself rather than accept
what I or any one else says is a fact. One instinctively trusts
one's own work, however superficial of fragmentary.
But in matters of faith and belief it is far better to trust what
one discovers, rather than what any one else says is a fact. In
fact I would add that any one who presents something for others
to accept ought to give all the sources and the processes of
logic that they have used -- it enable others to VERIFY the help
offered. No one is an authority. nature preceded us all and the
harmony and cooperation there that supports us all in living is
an important proof of the necessity of our seeing out every fact
The logic in this case is as I see it: There is one UNIVERSAL
WISE SPIRIT. It is in everything and it is unlimited.
Its work is to seek to have every living speck of matter graduate
so that they know it.
Mankind is the balance point where Mind has to opportunity of
universalizing itself and knowing the ONE SPIRIT, as well as
everything else in the Universe.
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