Re: Theos-World RE: on our toes What is THEOSOPHY
Jan 07, 2003 04:49 AM
by Morten Nymann Olesen
Hi Dallas and all of you,
Below are my views:
Thanks for answering.
I have cut the past emails except the latest to make this email short.
Well, your answer certainly made me wonder...
You said, "You are right, I did not want to raise that debate. It is
> any case."
And yet saying that you make an answer running two pages on the printer.
Fruitless ? Nothing is fruitless, but maybe it yealds less fruit.
In spite of that, I do my best to answer you.
1. Unfamiliar with the idea of the "dead-letter" ?
Blavatsky used the term several times in īThe Secret Doctrine. And she also
refers to what it is.
Reading by the dead-letter is - for instance - to read a sentence or a book
using only one mode of reading,
i.e. "the litteral mode". But words - and especially words of wisdom - often
has more than one meaning to them. (Which meanings one asks, - and the
answer could be, - that the use of you igmagination often tells you, there
are often hints in the scriptures, and other issues).
When the theosophical student learns to think at more than just one thing or
issue at a time while reading, - then, -reading without the dead-letter
alone comes forward as a possibility. H. P. Blavatsky (HPB) knew that and
used that idea a great deal.
The idea originates back in time. I have seen ancient scriptures from the
Middle East referring to it, using almost the same words "dead-letter". The
books of Idries Shah could lead you and the readers in the proper direction
to that, if you are interested in it.
The Middle Eastern scholar Seyyed Hussein Nasr talks in one of his books
about that the Arab language has for years had the knowledge and at least
used 13 different modes of writing, and that 6 of these constitutes a group.
There are also teachings on this using the words of sanskrit. Maybe B. A.
Goswami could teach the readers a trick or two on that.
To quote HPB on what the dead-letter is:
(THE SECRET DOCTRINE, Vol. 1, Page 336.)
"There is more wisdom concealed under the exoteric fables of Puranas and
Bible than in all the exoteric facts and science in the literature of the
world, and more OCCULT true Science, than there is of exact knowledge in all
the academies. Or, in plainer and stronger language, there is as much
esoteric wisdom in some portions of the exoteric Puranas and Pentateuch, as
there is of nonsense and of designed childish fancy in it, when read only in
the dead-letter murderous interpretations of great dogmatic religions, and
especially of sects." (end-quotation)
2. Yes yes. But what is "the original teachings" ?
The Akasha (the non-physical spiritual library) ? The Vedas ? The Secret
Doctrine ? Another Bible ? Or a great number of scriptures and symbols
And do the ernest intellectual students know all the different modes of
reading - including understanding fully the term "dead-letter" reading (or
even sensing) ? I hope so, but I have to say, that I think not.
3. Theosophy is, as we know, of course NOT ONLY a REPORT. Theosophy is the
Wisdom of the Gods, this is a living wisdom.
The Wisdom of the Gods is also to be found in our nature. (To quote HPB:
"Mr. Ralston Skinner, of Cincinnati, the author of "The Hebrew-Egyptian
Mystery and the Source of Measures" has our thanks.") He knew about that,
and HPB supports and introduces him ( THE SECRET DOCTRINE, Vol. 1, Page 308)
"Nor would it be just to enter upon an esoteric reading of symbolism without
giving due honour to one who has rendered it the greatest service in this
century, by discovering the chief key to ancient Hebrew symbology,
interwoven strongly with metrology, one of the keys to the once universal
mystery language. Mr. Ralston Skinner, of Cincinnati, the author of "The
Hebrew-Egyptian Mystery and the Source of Measures" has our thanks. A mystic
and a Kabalist by nature, he has laboured for many years in this direction,
and his efforts were certainly crowned with great success. In his own
"The writer is quite certain that there was an ancient language which
modernly and up to this time appears to have been lost, the vestiges of
which, however, abundantly exist. . . . The author discovered that this
(integral ratio in numbers of diameter to circumference of a circle)
geometrical ratio was the very ancient, and probably the divine origin of
linear measures. . . . It appears almost proven that the same system of
geometry, numbers, ratio, and measures were known and made use of on the
continent of North America, even prior to the knowledge of the same by the
descending Semites. . . . ."
"The peculiarity of this language was that it could be contained in another,
concealed and not to be perceived, save through the help of special
instruction; letters and syllabic signs possessing at the same time the
powers or meaning of numbers, of geometrical shapes, pictures, or ideographs
and symbols, the designed scope of which would be determinatively helped out
by parables in the shape of narratives or parts of narratives; while also it
could be set forth separately, independently, and variously, by pictures, in
stone work, or in earth construction." "
The quotation was cut short by me to save space.
The teachings of the orhtodox dead-letter churches - are dead wisdom,
because there isn't in a certain sense any wisdom there, (or not much anyway
in their minds).
But many of the old religious buildings contains information on Theosophy,
the ancient wisdom of all ages...Some of them exists today. Even some of the
Christian churches contains "the language of the birds" - the alchemists or
"builders" language. The same goes for some of the Mosques of Islam - using
the words to form pictures. And the God Vishnu in India is also often
pictured using this language. A language coinsiding with the use of the 7
keys - and the mystery language of HPB's.
It is said, that these teachings of symbols contains much wisdom. The
teachers of the dead-letter doesn't understand this. These buildings mention
by Skinner in the above exists many of them today ! Some of them even in
America...! (according to HPB).
4. And let us also agree, that it could be wrong to NOT AT ALL consider the
level of spiritual and good fruits made by personalities or individuals like
the one I mentioned in my last email. I think it is important to consider
the impact they have made each of them. Blavatsky is here one with great
impact compared with others, not doubt there !
But I - certainly - agree it is their teaching which is most important to
the new seekers of wisdom, and not the prejudice of the eyes or ears etc...
Those who feel themselves to be in contact with some of the great spirits of
wisdom, and who truely is so, will perhaps has a different opinion. >:-)
5. I also always recommend the originals of HPB's scriptures. And one is
welcome to correct me if I don't use them properly. But bud, While emailing
here at Theos-Talk it is not always easy to quote HPB's use of diagrams and
figures etc..., and that we will have to take into account. I think I forgot
to mention that in my last email to you Dallas.
So the readers are herby recommended the original scriptures of HPB's while
reading these emails on this issue (- which for some odd reason has the
title: on our toes What is THEOSOPHY) >:-) Smile....
6. And this one is well-meant and addressed to the better-knowing fariseaes,
who read this:
Maybe the ignorant reader, could be offered the suggestion, that there is
today for those advanced enough, books, which uses more than the 3 or 4
keys - as done in the so very famous and good book by the name The Secret
(SD vol. 2, page 797).
(And let us not forget, that 3 higher keys of the 7 keys are in the hands of
the initiated. Well, HPB says this. And maybe she is right.)
I will recommend those who are skilled (and maybe very skilled) in the Arab
language to read (not the supposed original, but ) the - true original -
books of the true sufi Ibn El Arabi (the Alchemist Doctor Maximus), and then
come and tell me, if they do not reach an even higher level than that of
HPB's by the name The Secret Doctrine.
In some of the sanskrit scriptures the use of more than 3 or 4 keys comes to
my mind. But they are in the hands of the initiates. I have the knowledge,
that they exist. (Why Kashmere comes to my mind, I don't know).
Well I have at least offered something. But it is not recommended that all
now start learning Arab or Sanskrit because of my offer. Because that is
most certain not the best solution for every reader here at Theos-Talk.
Well, that is just my humble view.
7. If Theosophy is more than "Theosophy", then why not add the teachings
of - for instance - Idries Shah or Mother Teresa and say of them that they
are to, some theosophical seekers, - usefull addings of teaching although
they are not what one could call core theosophical teaching.
Although I personally think that Idries Shah enhances the theachings of
Theosophy - on the by HPB not mentioned area of the Middle East. An area
which she stated, that she did'nt do much on, because only few scriptures
was translated to european languages at her time of writing The Secret
8. The New Age has made progress yes. And that scares me a little. Because
it was as I understand from a letter made by HPB to Judge, exactly why
Theosophy was created. It should stand as a buffer or even opposition
towards all this --- kind Sorcery stuff which a great part of what today is
called the New Age are dabbling with or copying Simon the Mages with...
And I do somewhat understand - the strong reactions from some readers here
at Theos-Talk, which strongly rejects - certain groups - which dare call
themselves Theosophical !
Excuse me for being critical, but the time is critical: For instance - some
(not all) Bailey-groups are not helping Theosophy very much these days. As a
former member I should know at least something about it. The problem as I
see it with the Bailey-groups are that they foreget the importance of the 7
keys - as mentioned earliere in emails as well as this one.
More so, they are inclined to be politically involved - in a negative
(theosophical-christian-like) manner, which are not giving humanitarian
justice towards The Middle East, a former 'great' society with a blossoming
science. A society which today by ignorant westerners are overlooked,
because its teachings are veiled in religious teaching, allegories etc.. and
even sufi-teaching, which the ignorants do not understand.
Some of the Bailey-groups lean to heavily towards New Age. Well only some of
The below should clarify:
To quote HPB - ( Letter 1 -1888, Second Annual Convention - April 22-23; - A
letter to W.Q. Judge to read to the Convention summoned for April 22d).
"It must be remembered that the Society was not founded as a nursery for
forcing a supply of Occultists -- as a factory for the manufactory of
Adepts. It was intended to stem the current of materialism, and also that of
spiritualistic phenomenalism and the worship of the Dead. It had to guide
the spiritual awakening that has now begun, and not to pander to psychic
cravings which are but another form of materialism. For by "materialism" is
meant not only an anti-philosophical negation of pure spirit, and, even
more, materialism in conduct and action -- brutality, hypocrisy, and, above
all, selfishness -- but also the fruits of a disbelief in all but material
things, a disbelief which has increased enormously during the last century,
and which has led many, after a denial of all existence other than that in
matter, into a blind belief in the materialization of Spirit.
The tendency of modern civilization is a reaction towards animalism, towards
a development of those qualities which conduce to the success in life of man
as an animal in the struggle for animal existence. Theosophy seeks to
develop the human nature in man in addition to the animal, and at the
sacrifice of the superfluous animality which modern life and materialistic
teachings have developed to a degree which is abnormal for the human being
at this stage of his progress.
Men cannot all be Occultists, but they can all be Theosophists. Many who
have never heard of the Society are Theosophists without knowing it
themselves; for the essence of Theosophy is the perfect harmonizing of the
divine with the human in man, the adjustment of his god-like qualities and
aspirations, and their sway over the terrestrial or animal passions in him.
Kindness, absence of every ill feeling or selfishness, charity, goodwill to
all beings, and perfect justice to others as to oneself, are its chief
features. He who teaches Theosophy preaches the gospel of goodwill; and the
converse of this is true also -- he who preaches the gospel of goodwill,
teaches Theosophy. "
I doubt wheather Dallas will answer on this, because he Thinks it is
And let us remember, that this above are only views, and no more than that.
Feel free to comment or do your best...
M. Sufilight with peace on earth...and a smile...
----- Original Message -----
To: "AA-B-Study" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Sent: Tuesday, January 07, 2003 2:14 AM
Subject: Theos-World RE: on our toes What is THEOSOPHY
> Jan 6th 2003
> Dear Friend;
> I am not familiar with "dead letter Theosophy." Also thank you for the
> good quotations form the
> S D that you sent me to read.
> You are right, I did not want to raise that debate. It is fruitless in
> any case.
> I think it ought to be clear to us all:
> Any proof of right or wrong currently advanced in regard to THEOSOPHY,
> lies in a study of what is written and its inherent logic. Does it
> dovetail with the original teachings?
> What should be clear, in my opinion, and as far as I am able to
> express it, is that Theosophy is a REPORT -- a statement of facts and
> of laws in effect, and those are basic to the whole organization of
> the Universe, of our world, of ourselves, and they are prevalent
> throughout Nature. And that being said, remains an opinion of course,
> and has to be checked and verified by each for themselves. The same
> criterion prevail in respect to H P B's teachings and books.
> She says they come form the Masters of Wisdom, She says that they are
> statements of fact and of history. We need not accept any of them
> until we are satisfied they seem to be accurate and reasonable. And
> that is what we are all doing.
> I would avoid calling it "dead letter." That is because it is alive
> until proven unreasonable. No statement of fact or of observation can
> be placed reasonably under such a designation until it is proved that
> it is untrue. I wonder who first produced and advanced this
> designation and why was it done?
> No claim can make it true. It would be an error to place a
> "personality" ahead or instead of the Philosophy. I am of the opinion
> that none of us have the stature or the ability to produce a SECRET
> DOCTRINE or an ISIS UNVEILED. I have also met in reading and study
> some who have presumed to "correct," "improve upon," "provide more
> advanced information," etc... than did H P B or the Masters in Their
> writings. The "proof is in the pudding."
> What I most strongly object to are edited editions of H P B's works
> put forward as copies of the originals, without the new editors
> marking the changes that they have introduced. That is not fair to
> new students, as they are not warned that those changes have been
> made. Hence I always recommend the ORIGINALS.
> Insofar as I am concerned, I offer my testimonial to its value ( I
> mean THEOSOPHY) as I have tested it and found it useful, coherent and
> logical so far.
> I also find that it reconciles the gaps and differences that the study
> of science and Nature have revealed.
> As scholars and investigators have tried various processes of
> reconstruction, using hypothesis and theory, that have attempted to
> draw a reasonable portrait of development regard to our past As far
> as I can understand it those reconstructions are not without serious
> gaps. But because I say so, does not make anything true or untrue. It
> merely says I have arrived at some different conclusions, and offer
> them for consideration..
> But getting back to what THEOSOPHY presents to us, I would say that
> anything that agrees or adds to that stream of thought and the
> narration of acts and events ( of that, which we call Theosophy) ought
> to be considered a part of it.
> As I recall, it is claimed that Theosophy antedates all known systems
> or religions, and, each of them originated in the work of one or other
> of the Elder Brothers, attempting to bring humanity in a certain area
> back to the lines of fact and to a consideration and an obedience to
> the laws of Nature, that are universal in scope, impartial as is
> Karma, and readily provable by all. In both her books ISIS UNVEILED
> and The SECRET DOCTRINE, H P B starts by speaking of the ancient Lodge
> and its records (see particularly ISIS UNVEILED II 98-103).
> Theosophy, is first a statement of facts in nature, but it is not a
> static system, since it continuously adds to its lore the record of
> the way in which the living decisions of mankind impact the whole area
> of joint living, and thus, the karma of the past is seen to be
> simultaneously discharged and built on for the future. Life after
> all, is ever progressive. We in our study and discussions are
> continually adding to that advance.
> As to 1975 and the statement that the "messenger" was to come. We can
> all look back and say, as so many have who hoped for a revelation:.
> The "messenger' may have come, may have done the work (or may still be
> doing it) and is unrecognized so far, this may or may not be true.
> Personally I do not know. But I would also say that idle statements
> are not generally made on serious matters in Theosophy.
> And if I did, what good would it do to me, or to others ? Just
> another "claim."
> Look at all those who clustered around H P B, and read their
> conversations and correspondence as recorded -- those give us an idea
> of the impact of H P B and of the teachings of Theosophy upon them as
> students. And as such, and because of their personal temperament, they
> received and profited, or did not profit, from such a presence.
> In any case it neither adds nor subtracts from THEOSOPHY.
> Now look down the years since 1891 when H P B's body died. What in
> general has been the progress and fate of the THEOSOPHICAL MOVEMENT ?
> I see clusters and nodes of activity, but by and large there is a
> valuable increment of progress in deep understanding of what Theosophy
> is, and how it can be individually applied.
> Thank you again for the good references in the S D.
> I hope I am clearer now?
> Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to http://docs.yahoo.com/info/terms/
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