Jerry Schueler's Comments to BAG's Part 4
Jan 13, 2003 01:17 PM
by D. H. Caldwell " <firstname.lastname@example.org>
<<<BA G > Here we see one of the basic problems with HPB's Theosophy.
THERE IS NO IMMORTAL SPIRITUAL ESSENCE OR PERSISTENT ENTITY IN
Well, what is the Nirvanee then? And while Olcott was a Theravadin,
Blavatsky was a Mahayanist.
<<<BA G >Self Realization in the Vedic-Vaishnava Tradition of the
Gita means realizing one's UNIQUE PERSONAL SELF IN RELATIONSHIP TO
THE PERSONALITY OF GODHEAD. The goal of Theravadin Buddhism is to
extinguish the false idea of any self, and likewise in the Mayavadi
Shaivite Hindu Tradition the ultimate reality of any finite or
infinite personal self is denied. These systems are wholly cynical
and assume that the existence of any self automatically means
self-centeredness / selfishness. >>>
Here is the crux of the whole business: BAG wants a Self and there is
none. The "unique personal self in relationship to the personality
of Godhead" is a mystical experience encountered on the upper planes,
which is still in duality and maya. The sense of a self that is
separate from a not-self, even if that not-self is Godhead, is
mayavic illusion. The notion that anatma is "cynical" shows an
obvious bias. The existence of a self as a conditional reality does
not assume "selfishness" at all, as evidenced by Buddhas and
<<<However the Bhakti or Divine Love Traditions assert that LOVE
exists, which can make beings truly other-centered.>>>
One does not need Bhakti to assert that love exists. Mahayana
Buddhism teaches compassion and love as essential characteristics on
any valid spiritual Path. A Theosophist can have love and compassion
without practicing bhakti yoga or worshiping some deity.
<<< On one hand she wants to keep some kind of concept of the self or
Atman and God as Parabrahman, but on the other, she has adopted
certain interpretations, views and categories of thought from
Theravadin Buddhism and Mayavadi Shaivite Hinduism, and these are
mutually exclusive with regard to the positive personalism of the
Vedic-Vaishnava Hymns and Puranas she has derived other ideas from.
She has adopted certain views from Mahayana Buddhism, not Theravadin.
Her atma-buddhi is equivalent to the nirvanee of Both Mahayana and
Theravadin; it is our spiritial Self which lasts for one manvantara.
Her nondual Monad is outside the cosmic planes of manifestation. So
Blavatsky has personalism within the 7 cosmic planes but not outside
it. So, they are not mutually exclusive at all.
<<<BA G > I have written elsewhere on the fundamental foolishness of
Theosophical race theory.>>>
"Foolishness" is a bit harsh, but it does, I agree, require some
faith to accept. And while race theories were big in Blavatsky's day,
they are not so today. Doubtless she would revise much of this if she
were here today. The latest generic testing has shown clearly that
people are separated more by breeds than by races, the differences in
DNA coding being very small.
<<<we see that the ultimate conclusion of HPB's Theosophy speaks of a
stupendous cosmogony, mentions the PURANAS, and the adepts 'wise men',
evolution and races, geometrical signs and glyphs, and the "soul of
things". There is no mention of anything or any ONE finite or
infinite Who is Transcendental, or of any God, Salvation or LOVE.
There is only the "...thousands of generations of Seers...", who have
gained wisdom, but the MONOTHEISTIC DEVOTION OF THESE GENERATIONS OF
SEERS IS NOT ACKNOWLEDGED OR THOUGHT WORTHY OF MENTION. >>>
Blavatsky was a Mahayana Buddhist, being one of the very first
Westerners to be initiated into Tibetan Buddhism. Mahayana teaches
that two things are necessary for enlightenment: wisdom and
compassion/love. Wisdom alone is not enough, and love alone is also
not enough; both are necessary, the one to guide the other. And I
agree that she ignores monotheism, which she did not like. She was a
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