[Date Prev] [Date Next] [Thread Prev] [Thread Next]

from Idyll of the White lotus by Mabel Collins ( the white Lotus)chapter 2

May 08, 2008 03:38 AM
by christinaleestemaker


And as I gazed dreamingly in my youthful enthusiasm upon this white 
bloom which seemed to me, with its soft, gold-dusted heart, the very 
emblem of pure, romantic love -- as I gazed the flower seemed to 
change in shape -- to expand -- to rise towards me. And lo, drinking 
at the stream of sweet sounding water, stooping to take its 
refreshing drops upon her lips, I beheld a woman of fair skin with 
hair like the dust of gold. Amazed, I looked and strove to move 
towards her, but ere I could make any effort my whole consciousness 
left me, and, I suppose, I must have swooned away. For, indeed, the 
next that I can recall I lay upon the grass, with the sense of cool 
water upon my face, and opening my eyes, I beheld the black-robed, 
strange faced gardener leaning over me.

"Was the heat too much for thee?" he asked, his brow knit in 
perplexity. "Thou lookest a strong lad to faint for the heat, and 
that, moreover, in a cool place like this."

"Where is she?" was my only reply, as I attempted to rise upon my 
elbow and look towards the lily bed.

"What!" cried the man his whole countenance changing, and assuming a 
look of sweetness that I should never have supposed could appear upon 
a face so naturally unbeautiful. "Hast thou seen her? But no -- I am 
hasty in supposing it. What have you seen boy? -- do not hesitate to 
tell me."

The gentleness of his expression helped my scattered and startled 
senses to collect themselves. I told him what I had seen and, as I 
spoke, I looked towards the lily bed, hoping, indeed, that the fair 
woman might again stoop to slake her thirst at the streamlet.

The manner of my strange teacher gradually changed as I spoke to him. 
When I ceased describing the beautiful woman with the enthusiasm of a 
boy who has never seen any but his own dusky-skinned race, he fell 
upon his knees beside me.

"Thou hast seen her!" he said in a voice of deep excitement. "All 
hail! for thou art destined to be a teacher among us -- a help to the 
people -- thou art a seer!"

Bewildered by his words, I only looked upon him in silence. After a 
moment I grew terrified, for I began to think he must be mad. I 
looked around, wondering whether I could return to the temple and 
escape from him. But even as I debated within myself whether to 
ventuch 2re upon this, he rose and turned upon me with the singular 
sweet smile, which appeared to cover and hide the ugliness of his 
strongly marked features.

"Come with me," he said; and I rose and followed him. We passed 
through the garden which was so full of attractions for my wandering 
eyes that I loitered on my path behind him. Ah, such sweet flowers; 
such rich purples and deep-hearted crimson. Difficult I found it not 
to pause and inhale the sweetness of each fair-faced blossom, though 
still they seemed to me, in my so recent adoration of its beauty, to 
but reflect the supreme exquisiteness of the white lotus flower.

We went towards a gate in the temple: a different one from that by 
which I had entered the garden. As we approached it, there issued 
forth two priests clad in the same white linen robes as I had seen 
worn by the golden-bearded priest Agmahd [a servant of the dark 
goddess[Avidya- the dark side of human Nature]. These men were dark; 
and though they moved with a similar stateliness and equilibrium, as 
though indeed, they were the most firmly rooted growth of the earth, 
yet to my eyes they lacked a something which the priest Agmahd [a 
servant of the dark goddess[Avidya- the dark side of human Nature] 
possessed -- a certain perfection of calm and assuredness. They were 
younger than he, I soon saw; perhaps therein lay the difference. My 
dark-visaged teacher drew them aside, leaving me to stand in the 
pleasant shadow of the deep-arched doorway. He spoke to them 
excitedly, though evidently with reverence; while they, listening 
with quick interest, glanced ever and anon towards me.

Presently they came to me, and the black-robed man turned and moved 
over the grass, as though returning on the way we had come together. 
The white-clad priests, advancing under the doorway, spoke together 
in low whispers. When they reached me they motioned me to follow 
them, and I did so: passing through cool, high-roofed corridors and 
gazing idly, as was always a foolish habit of mine, upon everything I 
passed; while they, still whispering together as they preceded me, 
would now and then cast looks upon me, the meaning of which I could 
not understand.

Presently they turned out of the corridors, and entered into a large 
room similar to the one I had already seen where the old priest was 
instructing his copyists. This was divided by an embroidered curtain 
which fell in majestic folds from the lofty roof to the ground. I 
always loved beautiful things, and I noticed how, as it touched the 
ground, it stood firm with the stiffness of the rich gold work upon 

One of the priests advanced, and drawing back one side of the curtain 
a little, I heard him say --

"My lord, may I enter?"

And now I began to tremble a little again. They had not looked 
unkindly upon me, yet how could I tell what ordeal awaited me? I 
looked in fear upon the beautiful curtain and wondered, in some 
natural fear, who sat behind it.

I had not overlong in which to tremble and be afraid of I knew not 
what. Before long the priest who had entered returned, and 
accompanying him I saw was the golden-bearded priest Agmahd [a 
servant of the dark goddess[Avidya- the dark side of human Nature].

He did not speak to me, but said to the others --

"Wait thou here with him, while I go to my brother Kamen Baka [a 
servant of the dark goddess[Avidya- the dark side of human Nature]

And saying this, he left us alone again in the great stone room.

My fears returned trebly upon me. Had but the stately priest given me 
a glance which held kindness in it, I had not so yielded to them, but 
now I was again plunged in vague terrors of what next should come 
upon me; and I was weakened also by the swoon which had but so 
recently prostrated me. Trembling, I sank upon a stone bench, which 
ran around the wall; while the two dark-haired priests talked 

I think the suspense would soon hove brought another lapse into 
unconsciousness upon me, but suddenly I was again awakened to the 
doubts and possibilities of my position by the entrance of Agmahd [a 
servant of the dark goddess[Avidya- the dark side of human Nature], 
accompanied by another priest of most noble appearance. He was fair-
skinned and fair-haired, though not so fair in either as Agmahd [a 
servant of the dark goddess[Avidya- the dark side of human Nature]; 
he shared with him the stately immobility of appearance which made 
Agmahd [a servant of the dark goddess[Avidya- the dark side of human 
Nature] an object of the deepest awe to me; and in his dark eyes 
there was a benevolence which I had not yet seen in any of the 
priests' countenances. I felt less fearful as I looked upon him.

"This is he," said Agmahd [a servant of the dark goddess[Avidya- the 
dark side of human Nature], in his musically cold voice.

Why, I wondered, was I thus spoken of? I was but a new novice, and 
had already been handed over to my teacher.

"Brethren" cried Kamen Baka [a servant of the dark goddess[Avidya- 
the dark side of human Nature] "is it not best that he should be 
clothed in the white garment of the seer? Take him to the baths; let 
him bathe and be anointed. Then will I and Agmahd [a servant of the 
dark goddess[Avidya- the dark side of human Nature] my brother put 
upon him the white robe. We will then leave him to repose, while we 
report to the company of the high priests. Bring him back here when 
he has bathed."

The two younger priests led me from the room. I began to see that 
they belonged to an inferior order in the priesthood, and, looking on 
them now, I saw that their white robes had not the beautiful golden 
embroidery upon them, but were marked with black lines and stitchings 
around the edges.

How delicious, after all my weariness, was the scented bath which 
they led me to! It soothed and eased my very spirit. When I left it I 
was rubbed with a soft and sweet oil, and then they wrapped me in a 
linen sheet, and brought me refreshment -- fruits, oiled cakes, and a 
fragrant draught that seemed to both strengthen and stimulate me. 
Then I was led forth again to the chamber in which the two priests 
awaited me.

They were there, with another priest of the inferior order, who held 
in his hands a fine linen garment of pure white. The two priests took 
this, and, as the others drew away the sheet from my form, they 
together put it upon me. And when they had done so, they joined their 
hands upon my head, while the other priests knelt down where they 

I knew not what all this meant -- I was again becoming alarmed. But 
the bodily refreshment had done much to soothe my soul, and when 
without further ceremony, they sent me away again with the two 
inferior priests, with whom I felt a little familiarized, my spirits 
arose, and my step became light.

They took me to a small room, in which was a long, low divan covered 
with a linen sheet. There was nothing else in the room, and indeed I 
felt as if my eyes and brain might well remain without interest for a 
while; for how much had I not seen since I entered the temple in the 
morning! How long it seemed since I had let go my mother's hand at 
the gate!

"Rest in peace," said one of the priests. "Take your fill of sleep, 
for you will be awakened in the first cool hours of the night!"

And so they left me. 

[Back to Top]

Theosophy World: Dedicated to the Theosophical Philosophy and its Practical Application