Re: The early TS, drugs and astral travel.
Dec 14, 2001 10:18 AM
Brigitte in what you write below, I hope that you are not implying
that astral travel is only possible through drug use.
I personally have had out of the body experiences and they were not
the result of using drugs or smelling the fumes of some drug.
I have also had other paranormal experiences and none of those were
Therefore, why should we assume that Blavatsky's "inner experiences"
or the paranormal experiences of Olcott and others surrounding
Blavatsky were to a greater or lesser degree the result of drug use?
More about this in my comments later on what Steve has written.
Brigitte, you write:
". . . most historical researchers that have done extensive research
on this will agree that there is a connection between drugs, HPB, and
the TS that time."
Could you please specify the historical reseachers that have done
extensive research on this? I know of Deveney's research and
speculations. Who else has written on this subject?
You also wrote:
"I therefore don't think Rawson's testimony about Blavatsky should be
dismissed, he is certainly one of the few people that know of the
more intimate aspects of Blavatsky's life. And his aquintance with
Blavatsky goes further back then that of Olcott and Blavatsky."
I agree that we should not hastily dismiss Rawson's testimony but we
shoulld not try to read into his testimony more than what is there
stated. For example, what is the SPECIFIC evidence that supports
your statement that Rawson "is certainly one of the few people that
know of the more intimate aspects of Balvatsky's life." For what
period of time did Rawson know Blavatsky? Did Rawson actually know
more about the intimate aspects of HPB's life than Olcott or
Wachtmeister did? And if you say "Yes", how do you know that is a
For example, Paul Johnson says Rawson was a life long friend of
Blavatsky, but where is the evidence to support that generalization?
How much contact was there between Blavatsky and Rawson in the time
period 1879 through 1891, for example? Before Blavatsky came to
America in 1873, how much contact had she had with Rawson? Did
Rawson have more contact in America with Blavatsky than Olcott or
Wilder or Judge? What we need here is evidence that answers these
questions, not just speculation paraded as factual statements.
Daniel H. Caldwell
> Steve: "Blavatsky insisted there was something "secret" about
> her movement, and it is likely this was the secret. (Reg. the
> botanical lapidation of HS Olcott.)
> Brigitte: Although in later years she might also have said things
> the contrary, ( she also said she was a virgin in spite of having
> been maried before.) most historical researchers that have done
> extensive research on this will agree that there is a connection
> between drugs, HPB, and the TS that time.
> More important it might have been incorporated in the inner
> teachings of the early TS regarding astral travel. If I find time
> will do some more typing and research on this topic but up front
> can mention following:
> In the "World" interview (I presume Daniel has it ?) Blavatsky
> states that she first was projected out of the body (to a
> house in Berlin) when the chief of gurus made her a drink a
> potion "the ingredients of which I know but will not tell."
> Blavatsky writes; "The women of Thessaly and Epirus, the female
> heirophants of the rites of Sabazius, did not carry their secrets
> away with the downfall of their sanctuaries. They are still
> preserved, and those who are aware of the nature of soma (a plant
> whose juices induce a hypnotic trance-like state) know the
> of other plants as well." ( Isis Unveiled)
> In "Erroneous Ideas Concerning the Doctrines of the
> Theosophists,"published in 1879, she declared that proof of
> of conditional immortality was only given the neophyte "durring the
> Great Mysteries, when a sacred beverage enabled him to leave his
> and, soaring in the infinity of worlds, observe and look for
> Related to this in Blavatsky's schema was the sacred "Sleep of
> an obvious reference to the Sleep of Sialam, a term used by
> P.B.Randolph in his Rosicrucian novel Ravalette (1863) for the
> highest, drug induced vision state. It was taken up in Isis
> where it relates to a drug- induced, prophetic "sublime lethargy"
> wich the uncounscious subject is made the "temporary receptacle of
> the brightness of the immortal Augoeides."
> P.Deveney in "Astral Projection or Liberating of the Double and the
> Work of the Theosophical Society"( wites: Later the "Sleep of
> Sialam" came to mean the soma-induced trance during wich the new
> initiate- both in the Orient and in the ancient Mysteries-
> the ultimate mysteries after undergoing the tests of Initiation.
> ("The Esoteric Character of the Gospels, "Lucifer, November 1887)
> Deveney ads that :"I do not think that drugs can be ruled out as a
> possibility in seeking practical techniques in the TS.- and would
> appear to be related to the degree structure or sections adopted by
> the Society at least as early as 1878 and which G.H.Felt , as we
> shall see, says were adopted from the verry beginning." (Deveney
> gives then more evidence as he goos on, and this is indeed one of
> books that is recomended reading if one wants to study this subject
> further, see: Deveney, "Astral Projection and the early TS")
> In The SD (1888), Blavatsky specifically identifies the term as the
> one in use "to this day"among the Initiates in Asia Minor, in Syria
> and even in higher Egypt.
> A.L. Rawson was one of a few life-long friends Blavatsky had, and
> herself attested to the validity of his character. In Isis
> Blavatsky makes the following comments concerning her good friend
> associate A.L. Rawson: "Outside the East we have met one initiate
> (and one only), who, for some reasons best known to himself, does
> make a secret of his initiation into the Brotherhood of Lebanon.
> is the learned traveler and artist, Professor A.L. Rawson, of New
> York City. This gentleman has passed many years in the East, four
> times visited Palestine, and has traveled to Mecca. It is safe to
> say that he has a priceless store of facts about the beginnings of
> the Christian Church, which none but one who has had free access to
> repositories closed against the ordinary traveler could have
> collected." Blavatsky goes on to quote Rawson concerning his
> initiation into a sect claiming secret knowledge concerning the
> of Christianity, the Druzes of Mount Lebanon.
> I therefore don't think Rawson's testimony about Blavatsky should
> dismissed, he is certainly one of the few people that know of the
> more intimate aspects of Blavatsky's life. And his aquintance with
> Blavatsky goes further back then that of Olcott and Blavatsky.
> PS. Rawson wrote knowing Blavatsky well: "She had tried hasheesh in
> Cairo with success, and she again indulged in it in this city under
> the care of myself and Dr. Edward Sutton Smith, who had a
> large experience with the drug among his patients at
> Mount Lebanon, Syria. She said, 'Hasheesh multiplies
> ones life a thousandfold. My experiences are real
> as if they wer ordinary events of actual life. Ah!
> I have ean xplanation. It is a recollection of my former
> existences, my previous incarnations. It is a wonderful
> drug, and it clears up a profound mystery."
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