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"a certain person, a half-developed brother then in the neighbourhood of Simla"

Feb 08, 2003 08:23 AM
by Daniel H. Caldwell " <>

In THE OCCULT WORLD, A.P. Sinnett writes about Madame Blavatsky 
visiting Simla, India in the autumn of 1880. He also writes about "a 
certain person, a half-developed brother then in the neighbourhood of 
Simla". Who was this Brother? Apparently this was 
D.K., the "Disinherited." Compare the account below with the note 
from the "Disinherited" in Mahatma Letter No. 8. 

Now Mr. Sinnett's words: 

I have repeatedly heard Madame Blavatsky called in this way, when our 
own little party being alone some evening, we have all been quietly 
reading. A little " ting " would suddenly sound, and Madame Blavatsky 
would get up and go to her room to attend to whatever occult business 
may have been the motive of her summons. A very pretty illustration 
of the sound, as thus produced by some brother-initiate at a 
distance, was afforded one evening under these circumstances. A lady, 
a guest at another house in Simla, had been dining with us, when 
about eleven o'clock I received a note from her host, enclosing a 
letter which he asked me to get Madame Blavatsky to send on by occult 
means to a certain member of the great fraternity to whom both he and 
I had been writing. I shall explain the circumstances of this 
correspondence more fully later on. We were all anxious to know at 
once- before the lady with us that evening returned up the hill, so 
that she could take back word to her host- whether the letter could 
be sent; but Madame Blavatsky declared that her own powers would not 
enable her to perform the feat. The question was whether a certain 
person, a half-developed brother then in the neighbourhood of Simla, 
would give the necessary help. Madame Blavatsky said she would see if 
she could " find him," and taking the letter in her hands, she went 
out into the veranda, where we all followed her. Leaning on the 
balustrade, and looking over the wide sweep of the Simla valley, she 
remained for a few minutes perfectly motionless and silent, as we all 
were; and the night was far enough advanced for all commonplace 
sounds to have settled down, so that the stillness was perfect. 
Suddenly, in the air before us, there sounded the clear note of an 
occult-bell. " All right," cried Madame, " he will take it." And duly 
taken the letter was shortly afterwards. . . . [42]

. . . we started on a little expedition. . . . We mistook our way to 
a place of which Madame Blavatsky had received an imperfect 
description- or a description she imperfectly understood- in an 
occult conversation with one of the Brothers then actually passing 
through Simla. Had we gone the right way that day we might have had 
the good fortune of meeting him, for he stayed one night at a certain 
old Tibetan temple, or rest-house, such as is often found about the 
Himalayas, and which the blind apathy of commonplace English people 
leads them to regard as of no particular interest or 
importance. . . . [44-45]

We set out at the appointed time next morning. We were originally to 
have been a party of six, but a seventh person joined us just before 
we started. After going down the hill for some hours a place was 
chosen in the wood near the upper waterfall for our breakfast . . . 
We had had our breakfast by this time. X- was formally" initiated " a 
member of the society by Colonel Olcott, and after a time we shifted 
our quarters to a lower place in the wood where there was the little 
Tibetan temple, or rest-house, which the Brother who had been passing 
through Simla- according to what Madame Blavatsky told us- had passed 
the previous night. We amused ourselves by examining- the little 
building inside and out, " bathing in the "good magnetism," as Madame 
Blavatsky expressed it, and then, lying on the grass outside, it 
occurred to someone that we wanted more coffee. The servants were 
told to prepare some, but it appeared that they had used up all our 
water. The water to be found in the streams near Simla is not of a 
kind to be used for purposes of this sort, and for a picnic, clean 
filtered water is always taken out in bottles, It appears that all 
the bottles in our baskets had been exhausted. This report was 
promptly verified by the servants by the exhibition of the empty 
bottles. The only thing to be done was to send to a brewery, the 
nearest building, about a mile oft, and ask for water. I wrote a 
pencil note and a coolie went off with the empty bottles. Time 
passed, and the coolie returned, to our great disgust, without the 
water. There had been no European left at the brewery that day (It 
was Sunday) to receive the note, and the coolie had stupidly plodded 
back with the empty bottles under his arm, instead of asking about 
and finding someone able to supply the required water. 

At this time our party was a little dispersed. X- and one of the 
other gentlemen had wandered off. No one of the remainder of the 
party was expecting fresh phenomena, when Madame suddenly got up, 
went over to the baskets, a dozen or twenty yards off, picked out a 
bottle- one of those, I believe, which had been brought back by the 
coolie empty-and came back to us holding it under the fold of her 
dress. Laughingly producing it it was found to be full of water. Just 
like a conjuring trick, will some one say ? Just like, except for the 
conditions. For such a conjuring trick, the conjurer defines the 
thing to be done. In our ease the want of water was as unforeseeable 
in the first instance as the want of the cup and saucer. The accident 
that left the brewery deserted by its Europeans, and the further 
accident that the coolie sent up for water should have been so 
abnormally stupid even for a coolie as to come back without, because 
there happened to be no European to take my note, were accidents but 
for which the opportunity for obtaining the water by occult agency 
could not have arisen. And those accidents supervened on the 
fundamental accident, improbable in itself, that our servants should 
have sent us out insufficiently supplied. That any bottle of water 
could have been left unnoticed at the bottom of the baskets is a 
suggestion that I can hardly imagine anyone present putting forward, 
for the servants had been found fault with for not bringing enough; 
they had just before had the baskets completely emptied out, and we 
had not submitted to the situation till we had been fully satisfied 
that there really was no more water left. Furthermore, I tasted the 
water in the bottle Madame Blavatsky produced, and it was not water 
of the same kind as that which came from our own filters. It was an 
earthy tasting water, unlike that of the modern Simla supply, but 
equally unlike, I may add, though in a different way, the offensive 
and discoloured water of the only stream flowing through those woods.
THE OCCULT WORLD, 4th edition

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