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The gallant Colonnel and Masters views on Shrines

Apr 26, 2009 12:45 PM
by Morten Nymann Olesen

Dear friends

My views are:

The gallant Colonnel appearntly made a great mistake in the below Shrine affair, with his eternal American flapdoodle and idiotic plans and schemes for Adyar.

I wonder about the present day Shrine or "Shrine" affairs?

Here is the letter...which in a sense can be said to be telling an important story leading up to what later became the Coulomb scandal.



When the first letters had gone to you the Countess who had told me that D. N. boasted of having in his possession a document to prove our criminal forgery of a letter of Mah. K. H. asking for money and promising to cure a son of Hurrissingjee, 1 I sat thinking what could be his foundation for such a horrid lie. Then the idea flashed upon me that about 3 months ago, when I received a letter from Hurrissingjee (the copy of which I now enclose for you to keep safely till need comes to use it  2 )-- D. N. who read all my letters was furious. He then raved against Olcott and I was mad too. For it was his fault, his eternal American flapdoodle and idiotic plans and schemes for Adyar. This is what took place: --

You have perhaps heard, that Hurrissingjee (Thakur of Baunagar's cousin) took it into his head to build a shrine for the portraits of the two Masters and meant to spend over it 10,000 rupees. He several times asked Master; He would not answer. Then he asked Olcott, who bothered Mah. K. H. through Damodar, as I had refused point blank to put such questions to Masters. Then the Mahatma answered "Let him talk with the chelas about it I do not care" or something to that effect. Well Damodar and Chundra Coosho I think and others went to work to make a plan of the shrine. Even the dirty Coulomb, was called in for his draughtsman's capacities. We were in Europe then. But as soon as we were gone came the Coulomb row. When we returned, Hurrissingjee, to show that the exposure had no effect on him, wanted to sell a village and build the shrine quand meme. The day after my return Mahatma told me to write to Hurrissingjee that He expressly forbid spending such amount of money. That it was useless and foolish. So I wrote. Then came the anniversary and Hurrissingjee sent a delegate for himself as he was sick. When the superlatively idiotic idea of a Temple of Humanity or Universal Brotherhood came into Olcott's pumpkin, the delegate, when the others were subscribing, was asked by Olcott and he said (in full convention in the Pandala before hundreds of people, "I believe His Highness wants to subscribe Rs. 1,000 --" I said to Olcott "too much-it's a shame"-but he pitched into me for my trouble and as I was then sitting there in the light of a prisoner in dock-I shut up. Well; Olcott came

1 "Unfortunately he said to the Countess that he had left it at Wurzburg, and asked her not to tell me as I would hunt for and destroy it!"
2   see Letter No. LXVa.-ED.

one day and said, "Do ask Master to permit me to have money (generally) subscribed for the Temple." So I sent his temple and himself to a hot place and said I would not. Then he went to Damodar, and D.-asked I think, for two or three days after I heard through Damodar that the prohibition to Hurrissingjee of spending money on such flapdoodles had been removed and that Hurrissingjee had a letter to that effect. I remember as though it was to day Dj. Khool's voice laughing and saying "He will catch it with his temple, the gallant Colonel." Next time D. K. I asked why was the prohibition removed when the very idea of the temple was stupid, and some people went against it. He said-"Well you ought to know that when there is a strong desire on both sides Masters never interfere. They cannot prevent people from hanging themselves." I paid no great attention to these words then, I thought they referred to the foolishness of the "temple." I understand them now.

Three or four months ago I received from Hurrissingjee the letter the copy of which is enclosed. This is the great document and proof of our joint crime. Mr. D. N. said on reading it that Col. Olcott alone desecrated Master's name by mixing them with money matters and I agreed with him. Now he comes out, and says that I must have precipitated that letter since the Master (he KNOWS it!!) could never condescend to mix his name with such a disgusting money-matter, "sons" and other things. Now I ask you what is there of so incriminating in the words of Master as quoted by Hurrissingjee? He had foolishly attributed the birth of his son to the Master's "blessings." He had bothered Master to permit him to subscribe at least for a bit of the "Temple" if not for a whole shrine and received these words in answer. "If you so rejoice over the birth of a son-then you may, if you choose subscribe, and then one day you may be able to bring to us also your son." What have I to do with this? -- Does Master guarantee his life in them? Master ordered him to come to Adyar and bring his newly born son there foreseeing that the malaria in Bhownuggar would kill the baby if he remained. This was said beforehand. Hurrissingjee never brought his son, never gave anything towards the temple (very luckily) -- and wrote me this desperate and foolish letter. But now, when according to D. N.'s theory Hurrissingjee was terribly mad with us for it-this same mad prince, was at the Anniversary and subscribed 2,000 rupees toward expenses at Adyar, and see how reverentially he writes to me. Well keep this "damaging" document if you please, in case of my death, or to confound Mr. D. N. He has made a horrible cruel mischief but I pity him. I had no answer yet from him to my threats to expose him. Very likely he will give me back "cheek" and impudence. I am prepared for all. I have indeed become a corpse inside and now come what may.
                                                                                                                                                           H. P. B."

[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]


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