The Mahatma Letters to A. P. Sinnett from the Mahatmas M. & K. H. Transcribed, Compiled, and with an Introduction by A. T. Barker

Facsimile of the Second Edition, 1926; published by Theosophical University Press. Electronic version ISBN 1-55700-086-7. This edition may be downloaded for off-line viewing without charge. For ease of searching, no diacritical marks appear in this electronic version of the text.



Compiler's Prefaces Introduction (22K) Table of Contents (81K) Mars and Mercury (12K) The Writing of the Mahatma Letters by A. T. Barker (9K) First Letter of KH to A. O. Hume (27K) The Views of the Chohan on the TS (18K)


Compiler's Preface

It will be seen, if reference is made to the "Contents" that the letters have been arranged in 7 Sections and an Appendix. The former contain nothing but Mahatma letters, while in the latter some letters have been added from three pupils of The Mahatmas M. and K.H. —: H. P. Blavatsky, T. Subba Row, and Damodar K. Mavalankar, not only for their intrinsic merit, but because they help to make clear questions arising in the main part of the book which would otherwise be left obscure.

The seven Sections suggest themselves as more or less natural divisions, but it should be remembered that as letters in one section often contain matter which also relates to the other Sections, considerable overlapping is unavoidable. However, an attempt has been made and that is the best that can be said.

The contents of each Section are arranged where possible chronologically, in the order of their receipt. The reader must bear in mind that with only one or two exceptions none of the letters were dated by the writers thereof. On many of them, however, the dates and places of receipt have been noted in Mr. Sinnett's handwriting, and these appear in small type immediately under the Letter Numbers.

It should be understood clearly that unless otherwise stated:

 Each letter has been transcribed direct from the original.

 Every letter was written to A. P. Sinnett.

 All footnotes are copies of notes which appear in and belong to the letters themselves, unless signed (Ed.) in which case they have been added by the compiler.


Throughout this volume there are a great many words used which belong to Buddhist, Hindu, and Theosophical terminology. Those who are unfamiliar with such terms are referred to the excellent glossary in

H. P. Blavatsky's "Key to Theosophy" and also to "The Theosophical Glossary," a separate publication by the same author. The reader is asked to believe that the greatest care has been taken in the work of transcription; the whole MS. has been checked word for word with the originals, and everything possible done to prevent errors. It is however probably too much to expect that the printed book will contain no mistakes, they are almost inevitable. In case any doubt should arise in the reader's mind as to whether any particular passage has been correctly copied from the original, the compiler wishes to intimate, that he will be happy to deal with any correspondence on the subject addressed to him care of the Publishers.

In conclusion the compiler's thanks are due and most gratefully acknowledged to those who by their assistance have made his task possible of accomplishment. — A. T. B.


Some explanation is due to the reader as to why a revised edition of this book has been considered necessary, and also as to the nature and extent of the corrections made in the text of the original edition. The book was offered to the public in good faith as an accurate transcription of the original documents, verbatim and without omission. Having had occasion recently to check certain letters with the originals, the Compiler made the discovery that an unduly large number of errors had somehow crept in, so many in fact as to necessitate a complete and thorough revision of the whole work from beginning to end.

The result of rechecking the text with the originals has disclosed the following: —

I. The majority of the differences are petty and trifling, affecting in no way the sense of the passages concerned — i.e., a question of capitals, punctuation, etc. Abbreviations are sometimes written out in full, e.g., "through" instead of "thro'"; and words sometimes take the place of numerals, e.g., fourth instead of 4th. There are also five or six instances of mistakes in paragraphing.

II. On the other hand there is a long list of corrections which unfortunately do affect the meaning: — (a) words wrongly italicised; (b) words omitted or wrongly transcribed, and (c) most serious of all, Letter No. 13, in which one page of the original was transcribed out of its proper position, necessitating the rearrangement of Answers 4 and 6.

The original intention was to present the letters in print exactly as in the originals, and the present Edition is an attempt to realize the original intention as far as it is practically possible. But it must be borne in mind that the material has to be arranged for the Press, for which the originals were not written — and a minimum amount of editing is essential to make the volume readable. The corrections made in the Revised Edition as compared with the first edition are therefore as follows: —

(a) Punctuation. Where the printed text differs from the originals to the detriment of the latter, correction has been made in accordance with the originals. In a few sentences, otherwise devoid of it, punctuation has been added to make the passage more easily comprehensible.

Capitals have been altered in accordance with originals as far as possible, but it is frequently difficult to determine whether a capital was intended or not, and the Compiler has used his discretion in this particular.

Abbreviations. Where these have been written out in full they have not been changed.

Numerals. Where the text has the exact equivalent in words no change has been made.

Paragraphs have been altered in two or three places where it could be done without affecting the pagination.

Spelling. Where a word is correctly spelt in the text and obviously misspelt in the original no change has been made.

(b) Omissions and Italics. All words previously omitted have been inserted and all mistakes in italics and words wrongly transcribed have been corrected.

Occasionally a word will be found in small square brackets; this always indicates that the word is not in the Notes. Where a note on the envelope or cover of a letter has been omitted, this has been included either under the Letter No. or as a footnote. Sanskrit. In Letters No. 1, 4, 132, and 87, a phrase in Sanskrit or oriental characters occurs under the signatures.

In Letter No. 59, the Sanskrit equivalents of the words "Mahakasha" and "gunas" have been added as in the originals and also a word in Letter No. 85. Letter No. 13. Answers 4 and 6 have been re-arranged in accordance with the original. Appendix. Three fragments in K.H.'s writing inadvertently omitted in the first edition have been added, and the treatment of the Mars and Mercury controversy has been slightly changed. Index. This has been revised in accordance with the corrected text. It is with the greatest regret and concern that the Compiler has to confess that the inefficiency of his work has rendered the revised edition necessary, and in extenuation it can only be said that the difficulties of transcription were very great. He alone is to blame for the mistakes made, and considers that his action in revising the whole work is the only one consistent with his duty and responsibility. — A.T.B.

January, 1926.

Top of Page Theosophical Society Homepage


By A. T. Barker

It is well known, among students of Theosophy and Occultism, that the philosophical doctrines and ethics which were given to the world through the Theosophical Society during the 16 years immediately following its foundation in 1875, emanated from certain Eastern Teachers said to belong to an Occult Brotherhood living in the trans-Himalayan fastnesses of Tibet. H. P. Blavatsky who, together with Colonel Olcott founded the Theosophical Society, acknowledged these Eastern Brothers as her Teachers, stating not only that They existed, but that she herself had received training and instruction at their hands during her sojourn in Tibet, and was therefore able to speak from her own knowledge and personal experience. It was not until 1880 that further testimony became available. In that year the late A. P. Sinnett, then living in India, was enabled through the agency of Madame Blavatsky, to enter into correspondence with her own Teachers, whom she referred to variously under the terms, "The Brothers," "The Mahatmas," and later "The Masters of Wisdom." During the course of this correspondence which extended over the years 1880 to 1884 Mr. Sinnett received many letters from The Mahatmas M. and K.H., the Teachers in question, and it is these original communications which are published in the present volume under the title of "The Mahatma Letters." The circumstances attending their receipt were fully dealt with by Mr. Sinnett in his "Occult World" and they need not therefore be restated here.

They are now published with the permission of the Executrix of the late A. P. Sinnett, to whom they were bequeathed solely and unconditionally; she, in her turn at the suggestion of the writer of this Introduction, allowed him the great privilege of undertaking the whole responsibility for the transcription, arrangement and publication of the Letters in book form.

The writer undertook the task with the fullest sense of the grave responsibility attending his action, convinced that the moment had come when the highest interests of The Theosophical Society demanded the full publication of The Teachings of The Masters given to Mr. Sinnett. He feels the responsibility the more keenly since there is a passage in one of the letters in this volume in which The Master K.H. says that neither he nor his brother M., would ever permit the publication thereof. Though there can be no doubt that these letters were not intended for publication at the time they were written, it may also be fairly assumed that the present impasse in the affairs of the Society was not anticipated either. At a time when there is so much controversy in regard to what was, and what was not the original Teaching of The Masters, the publication of the words of its own Teachers can do nothing less than serve the highest interests of the great movement which claims for its motto that "There is no religion higher than Truth." The Masters are what they are; what they have written

— they have written, and neither they nor their doctrines need the acclamation or apology of lesser minds.

It is almost impossible to arrive at the facts, or even to form a trustworthy opinion upon a subject so far reaching, by studying an edited book of extracts. Therefore, that the members of the Theosophical Society and the world at large, should be enabled to study the truth for themselves concerning The Masters and their doctrines as set forth in these letters signed by their own hands, has been the aim of the compiler. To this end, the whole of the Mahatma Letters left by Mr. Sinnett have been transcribed verbatim from the originals and without omission.

Mr. Sinnett's books The Occult World and Esoteric Buddhism were based almost entirely on the material contained in Sections I. and II. of this volume. A careful study of the exposition of the teaching given in those early works, as in that of more modern Theosophical writers, yields some interesting results when compared with the original teaching as contained in these letters. Many theories which have become the accepted dogmas of modern Theosophical doctrines, are clearly shown to be inaccurate and misleading, and it may therefore be profitable if the principal points of difference are indicated to the reader.

It must be admitted that there has been an increasing tendency in the Society during the last twelve years, to place an undue reliance on ceremonial, orders, Churches, creeds and their equivalent, thereby sacrificing the virility of individual effort and freedom of thought, which was so noticeable in the early days of the

movement. The Master K.H. writes in very clear terms on this subject, and it may be well to quote his own words. "And now after making due allowance for evils that are natural and cannot be avoided . . . I will point out the greatest, the chief cause of nearly two-thirds of the evils that pursue humanity ever since that cause became a power. It is religion under whatever form and in whatsoever nation. It is the sacerdotal caste, the priesthood and the Churches; it is in those illusions that man looks upon as sacred, that he has to search out the source of that multitude of evils which is the great curse of humanity, and that almost overwhelms mankind. Ignorance created Gods, and cunning took advantage of the opportunity." (Letter No. 10.) And again "Far from our thoughts may it ever be to erect a new hierarchy for the future oppression of a priestridden world." (Letter No. 87) The inference and the message of these words in our own times is sufficiently clear.

There has been a noticeable tendency also for sections of the Society to drift towards what Master K.H. calls "that most insane and fatal of superstitions — Spiritualism." (Letter No. 49) In another letter he says "a psychic Society is being founded . . . , it will grow and develop and expand and finally the Theos. Soc. of London will be swamped in it, and lose first its influence then — its name — until Theosophy in its very name becomes a thing of the Past." It is regrettable that these words are as true to-day, as when they were written. The, whole question is thrashed out from every point of view in these letters, so that no misunderstanding is possible to the mind of the impartial student. The mischief lies, then as now, in the misunderstanding of the real nature of spiritualistic phenomena. Those who adhere to the methods of Spiritualism claim that communication can be established with the souls and spirits of the departed by means of properly qualified mediums. That communication of a kind between the living and the dead can be made, is accepted as a demonstrable fact in these letters, and is not challenged in any way. But communication with what? Here lies the crux of the whole matter. Master K.H. states not once, but over and over again, that communication with the souls and spirits of the dead is an impossibility. At death, consciousness which pertains to the seventh, sixth, and fifth principles of man, (and in these are included the soul, and spirit and all that makes man human) withdraws into an unconscious gestation period which precedes re-birth in the Deva Chan or heaven-world. It leaves behind it, the physical corpse, the etheric counterpart or double, and lastly the emotional and mental shell which is the correspondence in subtler matter of the physical body, and which may be termed the vehicle of consciousness on its own plane, just as the physical body is the vehicle of consciousness in the physical world. It must be understood clearly however, that each of these empty shells has a certain illusory awareness or consciousness of its own, which is the collective consciousness of the aggregation of atoms and molecules of which they are composed, and quite distinct from the consciousness of the individual, or real entity, which informed them in life. The physical body has a similar consciousness which is purely animal and instinctive in nature. At death the consciousness of even the shell leaves it for a time, and does not return to it until the withdrawal of 5th, 6th, and 7th principles is complete. Not until after that is accomplished, does a certain awareness of existence return to the empty shells. It is these disintegrating corpses which can be temporarily galvanized into activity by the efforts of a medium; these can and do communicate, but only as it were from memory of what has been, and not from consciousness of present facts. This is the reason for the often stupid, meaningless, unspiritual messages from the other side of death which so disgust the seeker for real knowledge. The brief analysis given above, is the rule for all humanity, with the exception of the victims of accident and suicide on the one hand, and on the other those rare individuals (only the trained occultist knows how rare they are) who have won for themselves immortality.

Those students of "occultism" who believe themselves guided, by disincarnate entities ranging in degree from departed Theosophists to "Adepts who have relinquished the use of physical bodies on earth," (Esoteric Buddhism, p. 133. Eighth Edition) by means of the methods of mediums, ouija boards and their equivalent, will do well to consider their position in the light of these letters. Communication with departed Theosophists

(i.e. the real entities) as already shown is an impossibility, for alas! they cannot be included among those who have achieved immortality, the exceptions to the general rule governing humanity being so very few; and with regard to the guidance of disembodied "Adept Spirits" it may be asked, how those who have not deserved individual instruction from Adepts in the flesh, can possibly expect to receive direct help from Their superiors — the Planetary Spirits, the Dhyan Chohanic Host? It cannot be too strongly emphasized that in thus externalizing the source from which he seeks inspiration, the student sacrifices all possibility of the grand realities of spiritual attainment and direct knowledge. "The ever unknowable and incognizable Karana alone, the Causeless Cause of all causes, should have its shrine and altar on the holy and untrodden ground of our heart — invisible, intangible, unmentioned, save through the 'still small voice' of our spiritual

The importance of the correct understanding of the doctrines relating to post mortem conditions, may be judged by the significant phrase of Master K.H. "that he who holds the keys to the Secrets of Death is possessed of the Keys of Life." The dual meaning and application of the theosophical doctrines relating to Death would seem to have been missed — passed by. The entrance to the Mysteries has ever been through the Gate of Death; and as in the Egyptian "Book of The Dead" — under the symbolism of the passage of the Soul from life through Death to Devachan, lies hid the precious teaching which rightly understood will bring to rebirth the aspirant who has passed through the agonies of Death in Life.

The letters in the Section entitled Probation and Chelaship make a profound appeal to the heart of both mystic, and occultist. The wisdom, the instruction, the many intimate details, all combine to throw a new light not only on The Masters themselves, but on the whole question of discipleship. As one reads these pages written 40 years ago, the conviction is reached that the way to The Masters is open to-day as it was then. But the possibility of achievement for the individual lies not in following and pledging loyalty to any personal leader, but by uncompromising devotion to the Idea, — to principles. Master K.H. writes on this subject: — "There is a hero-worshipping tendency clearly showing itself, and you my friend are not quite free from it yourself. . . . If you would go on with your occult studies and literary work, then learn to be loyal to the Idea rather than to my poor self. When something is to be done never think whether I wish it, before acting; . . . I am far from being perfect, hence infallible in all I do. . . . You have seen that even an Adept when acting in his body, is not beyond mistakes due to human carelessness." (Letter No. 55)

In extenuation of the many anomalies created by the unfortunate discrepancy which exists between the principles of the Theosophical Society and their practice by individual members, it must be remembered that as emphasized in these letters, the Masters neither guide nor control the actions of their disciples. By the rules of the Brotherhood, pupils must be given "the fullest liberty and freedom of action, the liberty of creating causes, even if those causes become in time their 'scourge and public pillory.'" "Our chelas are helped but when they are innocent of the Causes which led them into trouble." (Letter No. 54) The path of discipleship leads into the heart of Nature itself; the condition of entrance — an obedience to her laws — complete and absolute. Before those Immutable Laws even the highest Adept must bow in humility. To the candidate for discipleship all things are permitted which are natural to Man. No simple natural act can defile. But "Occult Science is a jealous mistress, which allows not even the shadow of self-indulgence," and if the higher levels of spiritual attainment are to be reached the disciple must be prepared to sacrifice and transcend the natural desires of the body, and lead a life which, in the Master K.H.'s own words "is fatal not only to the ordinary course of married life, but even to flesh and wine drinking." (Letter No. 18) Those who would hope to solve the problem of sex by means of formulae which controvert laws that are obvious and known, dig with their own hands the pit which must ultimately engulf all that is human in them. To dare to suggest that such doctrines could have the sanction of The Masters of Wisdom (who are one with Nature) is to utter not only a blasphemy, but a self-evident absurdity which only a fool or a madman could be guilty of. If this question admits of any doubt in the minds of students of occultism in general, the same cannot be said of those who know anything of the inner mysteries of Astrology. That ancient Science can and will prove that no such formulae exist in the book of Nature, and any theories that are based on them can only be regarded as Sorcery of the most vicious description. That such doctrines exist is one of the reasons for the lack of virility in the Society to-day. The consideration of the inner condition of The Theosophical Society, reminds one irresistibly of all that was written in the Secret Doctrine (vol.II, pp. 409-415) of the sublime allegory of Prometheus — the crucified Titan, gazing in his suffering towards his own "heaven appointed deliverer — Herakles," but so far alas! in vain. At this momentous epoch in the history of the Society, those pages of Madame Blavatsky's have a message full of the profoundest significance for all who are not too blind or too unwilling to see the truth contained in it.

It is remarkable, more than thirty years after her death, how Madame Blavatsky is justified at almost every point in these letters. Few people have been more unjustly reviled, and even some of those who knew her intimately preferred to believe that she had committed every kind of error rather than admit for an instant that

they themselves could be in the wrong. How far she was ever the deceiver depicted by Mr. Sinnett in his posthumous publication "The Early Days of Theosophy in Europe," may be judged by the reader if he will study the letter from Master K.H. (Letter No. 54) in which he gives his own opinion on her delinquencies. Those who love the memory of H. P. Blavatsky for her work and the gifts she gave them, cannot but feel after reading that letter that after all she was worthy of their high regard; and those who have tried to blacken that memory and minimise the value of the work she did, will rise to heights indeed if the prayer be granted — that they may never deserve worse condemnation.

In nothing is Madame Blavatsky more completely vindicated than in the explanation and refutation she gave in the Secret Doctrine, of the misconceived theory in regard to Mars and Mercury, which was originally published in Esoteric Buddhism. The details of that old controversy are well-known to Theosophists, and it is fortunate that the publication in this volume of the letter originally so misunderstood by Mr. Sinnett, refutes finally the amputations made against Madame Blavatsky in regard to it. It is indeed amazing that Theosophists have continued to permit the promulgation of the idea that Mars and Mercury belonged to the same planetary chain as The Earth, for the facts are evident that they do not. It is obvious to the eye of the Astrologer, if not to students of other branches of occult science, that such a theory must throw into confusion every system and scale of correspondence in the Solar System a fact which alone is enough to show that it must be false.

But the mere assertion of facts is not sufficient, and it is necessary to examine the whole controversy in detail from the beginning. Those who wish to go further into the matter are referred to the paper which has been included in the Appendix at the end of this volume. There, all the facts have been dealt with fully by the present writer, and he believes conclusively.

In the life of the Theosophical Society a cycle is closing, and ere the reader opens this volume it will have run to its inevitable conclusion. It leaves behind it a legacy of things done which had better have been left undone, and a record of mistaken zeal and wasted opportunity of which few can be proud. The vigorous new life of the dawning cycle which is beginning to course through the veins of the old body, has of necessity objectivised and made apparent, all that was contained in it of a nature subversive of true progress. If Master

K.H. has said that, "the Society can never perish, though Branches and individuals in it may," the words of that other Teacher must also be remembered, "that new wine cannot be poured into old bottles and that he who would find his life must first lose it. Be on your guard against hypocrisy, for nothing is hidden that shall not be revealed, and nothing concealed that shall not be made known; and all that has been uttered in darkness shall be heard in the light, and what has been whispered in chambers shall be proclaimed from the house-tops. There are days that are coming when one stone shall not be left upon another without being torn down. Take care that you are not deceived, for many shall come in My Name saying, "I am He, and the time is near" — but do not go after them. And when you hear of wars and disturbances, do not be scared; these have to come first, but the end is not yet. For these are the days of Divine vengeance. And there will be signs in the Sun and Moon and Stars, while on Earth there will be dismay and bewilderment at the roar of the sea and the waves, men's hearts failing them for fear and foreboding of what is to befall the universe. For the orbs of the heavens will be shaken, and then they will see the Son of Man coming with power and great glory. When these things begin to happen, look up — for your release is not far distant."

Out of the wreck that is inevitable a shape shall arise that may be worthy of immortality. Let those who have climbed the hill and seen the vision, and in that clean, sweet air have heard the key-note of the dawning cycle

 hold fast — and remember in the days that are coming — the sweetness, and the beauty, and the truth they have seen.



Fellow of the Theosophical Society.* London, September, 1923.

*The state of affairs in the Theosophical Society having become progressively worse, the writer

resigned his membership in April, 1925.

Mahatma Letters Homepage



Compiler's Prefaces Introduction by A. Trevor Barker How the Mahatma Letters Were Written by A. Trevor Barker Mars and Mercury by A. Trevor Barker First Letter of K. H. to A. O. Hume View of the Chohan on the T. S. Homepage

Detailed Contents of The Mahatma Letters

Quick Links to description of Sections

Section 1 — Occult World Series

Section 2 — Philosophical and Theoretical Teachings 1881-1883

Section 3 — Probation and Chelaship

Section 4 — The Phoenix Venture and the Condition of India

Section 5 — The London Lodge of The Theosophical Society

Section 6 — Spiritualism and Phenomena

Section 7 — Miscellaneous Letters



Section I: The Occult World Series

Letter No. 1 — London newspaper test. Solomons of Science — experimental knowledge — vril of the coming age — skeletons of giants. Hooke — Newton — position of Science — Human nature the same for a million years — value of occult phenomena. Science and Copernicus — Robert Recorde — Wm. Gilbert — Galileo — Bacon — charlatans the shield of the "Adept" — the rewards of the Goddess Saraswati; the phenomenon of the Ascension.

Letter No. 2 — Methods of research in Occult Science — the mysteries not for the public — Conditions of communication with the Mahatmas — the mode of life demanded. Motives — the object of the Theos. Society — significance, of selfishness — the T.S. and Universal Brotherhood — the study of occultism — path of occultism — Schools — Teachers, etc. Beneficent powers of knowledge — seal of the mysteries; the life of the aspirant — Anglo-Indian Branch T.S. — conditions for good test phenomena.

Letter No. 3a — "Brooch" phenomenon

Letter No. 3b — Postal address in N.W.P.

Letter No. 3c — Pillow incidents.

Letter No. 4 — Crisis in Tibet — danger of invasion by Russia. Menacing destiny of T.S. — Avalanche in the Karakorum Mts. — H.P.B. demands assistance telepathically — her condition — the state of K.H.'s countrymen. Accelerated modes of delivery — Anglo-Indian world — agitation caused by the Bombay publications. Col. Olcott — the feelings of the English to the Mahatmas — O.'s devotion and self-sacrifice

unequalled — independent A.I. Branch an impossibility — mortal blow to T.S. — non-interference with Branches by Parent Society — Arbitrator when specially called upon — trust in word of honour. Different habits of Tibetans and Hindus — lack of understanding — national prejudices — learned in Yog-Vidya but unfit for drawing-rooms — essentials and non-essentials. Difficulties of the Mahatmas — prejudice — unwashed Christian Saints — responsibility for Sinnett and Hume — interference only by the Mahatmas — policy of A.I. Society to be submitted to Chief. Attitude of Mahatmas to the aspirant — marriage and Raja Yoga — different ways of acquiring occult knowledge — encouragement given to Sinnett — "Universal Brotherhood" — not an idle phrase — the paramount claim of Humanity; only secure foundation for universal morality — aspiration of the true Adept.

Letter No. 5 — Inaccuracies of H.P.B. — A.I. Branch — Hume's letter — haughtiness of English — race prejudice — personal habits. The test of the 27th — Jhelum despatch — impossibility of deception. The methods of Hume — his letter a monument of pride — further encouragement to Sinnett — necessity of Universal Brotherhood in Europe. Position of Olcott in relation to the T.S. — a professor of occultism — letter to Lord Lindsay — H.P.B. not to give practical instruction to A.I. Branch.

Letter No. 6 — Methods of correspondence — occultists copy nature — suggestions for group study. Analysis of Hume's character — truths and mysteries of occultism — phenomena will prove destructive of bigotry — but constructive for Brotherhood of Humanity. Planetary spirits — phenomenal manifestations — ideas rule the world — revolutions — creeds will be crushed — Man's position in the Universe — The Eternal Now — the choice — highest philosophy or phenomena — the wish of the Chiefs.

Letter No. 7 — Sinnett disappointed in expectations of training — appreciation of his efforts for T.S. — interest in him of one higher than K.H.

Letter No. 8 — Personal observations re Sinnett — reasons for K.H.'s actions. Lord Crawford — character and possibilities — direct communication refused. Methods of establishing communication — unscientific absurdity. Velocity of mechanical force — Sinnett's inability to understand explanations of phenomena — the only way — Past, Present and Future — grossness of western mind. The Colour rays beyond visible spectrum

— realities appear absurdities — insurmountable difficulties. Grades of intelligence — Superstition — the world repudiates what it cannot grasp — the novice in occult science must reach the goal or perish — to doubt is to risk insanity. The Mahatmas attitude to humanity and the world — not dried up mummies. K.H.'s personal attachments — erroneous ideas about Mahatmas — Yogis — difference between Hatha and Raja Yoga. Advice regarding Occult World — manner of dealing with letters. Problems of mystical phenomena — the Forlorn Hope — uses of spiritualism. Unity gives strength — importance of co-operation — Damodar's letter — value of concentration. Home, the medium.

Section 2: Philosophical and Theoretical Teachings 1881-1883

Letter No. 9 — Observations on The Occult World. Criticism of members of T.S. and others. Stainton Moses. Planetary spirits and the Earth — their mission — S.M. and occultism — abundant proof — new phase of Truth — explanations re experiences of S.M.; Imperator — mediumship — The "Dweller on the Threshold"; and conscious life in spirit — reply to Fechner. Psychic Communication with spirits an impossibility — universal laws — cycle of intelligent existences — cosmic matter — Anima mundi. The progress of man — The Great Cycle — evolution of the Ego — the circle of necessity. The world of Causes — and of Effects — Self Conscious Egos — hell and purgatory. The lower world of effects — a definition of Truth — Brothers not permitted to control the will of the neophyte — The Brethren of the Shadow. K.H.'s relations with Sinnett — observations on the Occult World — its effect on H.P.B. and others — Wallace and Crookes. Willingness of Adepts to enlighten mankind — their mission to reveal Truth.

Letter No. 10 — The philosophy of the Mahatmas with regard to "God" — the God of the theologians. Dyan Chohans — definition of "nothing" — logical conclusions — the Universal Mind. The belief in Planetary Spirits — matter is Eternal — no-one has ever seen God — cannot accept an extra-cosmic deity. Phlogiston

— belief in matter alone — its unceasing motion which is life — ideas on Evil. The cause of evil is in human intelligence and action — natural laws and necessary evils — the sacerdotal caste and churches — the chief

Letter No. 11 — K.H. has misgivings in role of instructor — the eternal Essence — Force — immutability non-existent in Solar System. Inappropriate terms used by Science — this teaching opposed to all accepted theories — observations on the fallacies and incompleteness of Science — energy indestructible — gravity — chemical attraction — electricity. Chelas are magnetised — only one element in Nature, Akasa — spirit and matter, one — the tetracktis — the sacred seven; the Greek Brother — necessity of serenity of mind for occult study. Psychical powers of hearing — our Zoophagous friend — questions of diet — transmission of letters. Schopenhauer and the "Arhat" doctrines.

Letter No. 12 — Explanations re Mahayuga — Pralaya — cyclic evolution — Manvantaras — dead worlds. An eternity of action — Ethnographical details — Esquimaux — Neolithic age — the Basks of Spain — the early traces of man — Geike, Dawkins, Fiske — five races — evolution of speech.

Letter No. 13 — Cosmological notes and queries — esoteric cosmogony. Nature works with positive and negative forces — the worlds of effects. Man's principles return to their source at death — the planet and man not created. The seven-headed serpent Ananda of Vishnu — the musical scale and the planetary chain — man has potentiality of all 7 principles as a germ. "Life" no responsibility except in man. 7th principle latent in all the principles — cause of pollution not in the body — the evolution of animal-man. Man's development follows that of planet — Biblical analogies — the anthropoids. Buddhas and Avatars. The object of initiations.

Letter No. 14 — 7 objective and 7 subjective globes. The 7 kingdoms — the descent of the monad — occult divisions of mineral kingdom — rounds and rings — divisions and classifications — the whole truth not permitted to be given. Numbers the key to knowledge — rounds, races, and the number of incarnations in each — the problem of the 777 incarnations — Plato and Confucius 5th Round men — Buddha a 6th rounder. Explanatory notes of the diagram "Man on a Planet" — ascending and descending arcs of evolution — the Dhyan Chohans — Devas — increasing intelligence as the Rounds proceed — what happens in each Round.

Letter No. 15 — Germ of future entity — history of the human foetus the key to the mysteries of nature — the cosmic atom — aggregations of atoms becoming man-bearing globes. Their indestructibility and growth

— Adi-Buddhi, Force, or Infinite Life in manifestation. One seven-fold element the permanent cause of all manifestation — examples — the five cognisable elements — the sixth principle. Observations on the "fire" element — primal igneous principle — 7 manifestations of fire — the Tree of Life. A mineral contains a spark of the One — the Law of formation, birth, etc. of a globe the same as for a child — the 3 kinds of Manvantaras and Pralayas. Life impulse and formation of Globe "A" — passage of Essence from one globe to another — and one kingdom to another. Further observations on the evolution of man — increased spirituality of the 5th Race man — kingdoms re-entering Globe "A". Law of equilibrium manifesting — 6th and 7th senses — the Lord Buddha a 6th Race man — his appearance a mystery — individuals can only outstrip humanity by one Round. Surya Manwantaras and Pralayas — the Cosmic night. Elementals — Flammarion a Theosophist — his splendid intuition. Pernicious influence of the Moon — the Sun is the first to disintegrate at the Solar Pralaya — the 6th principle of the Universe and man, the greatest of all mysteries.

Letter No. 16 — The Devachan Letter — Devachan allegorically described by Buddha — who goes to Devachan. The Ego enjoys perfect bliss — Karma stands aside — he is the dreamer and the dream — souls of the departed unable to descend to those on earth — pure, loving sensitives can become raised in consciousness to contact those in Devachan — some Subjective spiritual communications real — "rapport," identity of molecular vibration. Great varieties in the Devachan state — the Dhyan-Chohans do not commit mistakes. Degrees of spirituality — "the planet of Death" — when man dies his 2nd and 3rd principles die with him — the gestation state. Elementaries and "angel-guides" — Kama-Loka — a torn out page in the Book of Lives — the 6th and 7th principles, the unconscious and eternal Monad. The ethereal Ego — the Monad remains untainted by evil for ever — the karma of evil deeds accrues to the new personality — varying periods between Death and Devachan depending on spiritual stamina and karma. Devachan not solely for Adepts. A classification of Devas, elementals, sorcerers, etc. The territory of doubt — things acceptable and non-acceptable to Spiritualists. Post mortem conditions of Suicides and those killed by accident. Psychic

vampires — mediums create new and evil Karma and Skandhas for their victims — study deeply the doctrines of Karma and Nirvana. The Recording Angel — meaning of Skandhas — identity of the Ego. Justice of Karma — causes producing the new being — suicide and violent death. How mediums and Spiritualists multiply the causes of human misery — the reason why the Masters oppose Spiritualism — indiscriminate mediumship and materialisations especially objectionable. Individual and personal immortality

— divisions of the 7 principles and 7 elements. Hume and Sinnett receive more information than ever given before to non-initiates — the teaching to be regarded as a trust for the Society. The Chohan forbids H.P.B. to go further than the Black Rock — Damodar's foolish austerities — the body of Occultists in Egypt — K.H. sighs for Nirvana.

Letter No. 17 — Natural seers and clairvoyance — 5th round men — the Buddha a 6th round man — his future incarnations — Buddha overshadowed some chosen individuals — sex a mere accident of birth, guided by Karma. The superior classes — course of higher Nature's law — peoples of India belong to oldest branchlet of the 5th human race — "Ernests" and "Joeys" and soulless mediums. Subba Row's reverence for


Letter No. 18 — The evolutionary journey of the monad — 7 ramifications of the 7 races — man passes through all 7 times — Manvantaric chains existing in and out of our Solar System. Man's earth cycle the counterpart of great cycle — mistakes of Anthropologists — Pritchard nearest the mark — the test of true progress. The present 5th human race began in Central Asia over one million years ago. Occult Science a jealous mistress — fatal to ordinary course of marriage.

Letter No. 19 — Post mortem conditions of suicides and victims of accidents.

Letter No. 20a — From A.O. Hume to K.H. Queries re spiritualistic phenomena — shells — suicides and accidents. Death by drink — over-study — diseases, etc — suggestion that phenomena of spiritualism may be produced by spirits, not by shells — some teach higher morality — Allan Kardec's books.

Letter No. 20b — From A.P.S. to H.P.B. Eliphas Levi's statements re annihilation — queries in regard to survival of spiritual monad — obscuration of planets and annihilation.

Letter No. 20c — Meaning of the terms God and Christ — candidates for Devachan — death and re-birth in Kama-Loka — love and hatred the only immortal feelings — only those we have loved exist for us in Devachan — the memories which only affect personality blotted out — duration of Devachan — no perception of time — Devachan and Avitchi created by ourselves during life. Importance of predominant feeling at moment of death — the events of whole life seen in vision at death — only adepts and sorcerers know they are dead — they only are immortal — co-workers with nature for good or evil — definition of Immortality — self-consciousness — memory regained by even good men only in Devachan — "soul" becomes unconscious at death in all cases — faculties of perception, cogitation and volition, become extinct for ever at death. Apparitions — no essential difference between doctrines of Eliphas Levi and those of K.H.

 what immortality signifies to initiates and occultists — several kinds of immortality — the full adept in relation to death. Chohans, Planetary spirits and immortality — E. Levi speaks of personal not spiritual Egos

 co-workers with nature — annihilation and the eighth sphere — potentiality for evil in man greater than for good — Sorcerers and immortality. Suicides separated from higher principles by a gulf — not so in victims of accidental death — Dhyan Chohans do not guide living human Egos but protect victims of accidental death — victims sleep but to awake at the hour of last judgment — the struggle between the 6th and 7th and 5th and 4th principles. Reborn on earth immediately if insufficient material for Devachan — only shells and suicides can be attracted to a Seance — suicide a question of motive and responsibility — effect of suicide during temporary insanity — Guiteau. Bulk of phenomena of spiritualists due to shells — unconscious 5th principle (soul) cannot communicate with a living organism — Allan Kardec not quite immaculate — even Dugpas capable of teaching the Highest morality — preaching with an end in view proves little. The time for the obscuration of a planet — a man must love or hate well to be in either Devachan or Avichi — "Nature spues the luke warm out of her mouth."


Letter No. 21 — From A.P.S. to K.H. Queries in regard to post mortem conditions of accidents and suicides. K.H.'s replies to same — the teaching given is the rule — exceptions enforce the rule — K.H. accused of

Letter No. 22 — To A. O. Hume. Dual attributes of Universal and human Mind — conscious and mechanical functions — the conscious attribute of Universal Mind a hypothesis only, but scientific fact in finite mind — the human brain — voluntary and involuntary nervous systems — man potentially more powerful than "God"

 contrary to finite, infinite mind exhibits only mechanical functions of Cerebellum. The extent of the knowledge of an adept and of a planetary spirit — laws of Nature mechanical — Motion the eternal and uncreated deity. "God" cannot be both intelligent and wholly material — a God with intelligence would be a fiend in view of the existence of evil. The Mosaic deity, "No Being" — Vedantic Acosmism — greatest adepts have not penetrated beyond the Solar System — but they know with certainty of other Solar Systems

Motion governs laws of Nature — no room for a moral Governor of the Universe — darkness does not comprehend light because it is annihilated by it — whence the Immutable Laws and their supposed Creator. Nepaulese Swabbhavikas — Swabbhavat is force — a force of limitless potentiality, but yet not "God" because man can use it — the multiform manifestations of life made perceptible by force. Man can become his own creator and ruler — Immutable Laws eternal and uncreated — only one law in the Universe — Nature disproves the theory of an all-loving, omniscient, omnipotent God — eternal progressions of cycles and evolution — spirit and matter are one — only distinct in manifestation — the Absolute the only reality. Ice, water, and vapour as an illustration of the Trinity — the Pyramids — matter indestructible and coeval with Spirit — matter, force, and motion the Trinity of physical Nature — Evil — mental attitude of the pupil

 must learn alphabet in order to read — the world of occultism is the world of force — only the initiate can know. The Chela becomes the Master — mystery and miracle vanish — occultism an exact science — its methods laid down in a code as old as humanity.


Letter No. 23a — Queries by A.P.S. in numbered paragraphs; (1) cause of rush of modern progress — (2) civilisation as great as our own — (3) what was the Fifth Race about for the 998,000 years preceding the last 2,000 — (4) to what epoch did the Continent of Atlantis belong — (5) the origin of evil; (6) the use of the whole cyclic process endured by the spirit — (8) scientific questions — cause of precipitation of rain — magnetic conditions — (9) the composition of the sun's corona — (10) photometric value of light — star magnitudes — (11) atmospheric disturbances in atmosphere of Jupiter — (12) the Siemen's theory of Solar combustion — (13) cause of magnetic variation — (14) the possibility of the discovery of more planets; (15) a moment of the highest bliss — (16) Devachan and Avitchi — (17) the effect of the last thought in the mind before death — (18) full remembrance of all our lives — (19 & 20) nature of the memory of the "shell" —

(21) the spiritual Ego — evolution of its personalities — the shell of A. P. Sinnett and the nature of its consciousness; (22) the Planet of Death — (23) Mars and Mercury — (24) is the sun the habitation of spiritualised beings — (25 & 26) the case of the Ego who has not sufficient material for rebirth in Devachan

— (27) the case of the murderer Guiteau — (28 & 29) planetary obscurations and the evolution of forms.

Letter No. 23b — K.H.'s replies to queries in 23a. End of an important cycle — cyclic law for race and sub-race — Cortez — sub-races of Peru and Mexico. Zodiacal records — civilization an inheritance — Europe rejects testimony of antiquity — the Western Cendrillon — Eocene Age — the sinking of Poseidonis — Lemuria — our present Continents have been submerged and will be again. Greek, Roman and Egyptian civilisations less than those of the 3rd race — history all at sea. Copernicus avails himself of a Pythagorean MSS. — the children of the "Fire Mist" — ancient civilizations; the Chinese — Ireland strewn with gigantic bones of mammoths and monsters — Malayans, Tibetans, Javanese, the Miocene times. Egyptian priests and Atlantis — the inhabitants of Shamballah — Baron d'Holbach. Atlantis connected with the origin of evil — obscurations heralded by cataclysms; the premises of Science wrong — the future Fate of British Isles, France, etc. Progress towards absolute evil arrested by cataclysmic changes — Tree of Knowledge in safe keeping of the Mahatmas — the Planetaries — every race has its Adepts. The cyclic process — Spirit an abstraction — in union with matter it is life — the mystery and problem of life. To solve the problem one must become an Occultist — all forms mask but one all-pervading Force — one life, one law, one element — the conclusions of greatest scientific minds — force can be infused into artificial man — Spirit, life and matter do not exist independently of each other. No phenomenon in Nature disconnected from magnetism and electricity — phenomena of earth currents due to Akasic magnetism — rain can be induced artificially — some calculations for physicists. Magnetic attraction — atmospheric changes — meteoric dust. Meteors — sun little to do with heat and nothing with rain — Reichenbach's crystals — the sun's corona — head of a man in ecstatic condition — aureoles — hydrogen. Sun spots — sun not the central planet of our Universe — the

difficulties confronting Scientists in studying Solar phenomena — atmospheric tremours — no obstacle to the Adept — sun full of iron vapours — the demonstration by the spectroscope — comets. "Store-house" of our system — its blood corpuscles — its electromagnetic aura — misconceptions of Science. Forces of which the sun is composed — it feeds the smallest atom as well as the greatest genius — the distance of the stars from us — no trustworthy basis for calculating magnitudes and distances — observations with Pickering Photometre — astronomical predictions of Chaldees and Rishis faultless. Light not an independent principle

 every phenomenon the effect of diversified Akasic motion — velocity of light — methods adopted by French experimenters. The condition of Jupiter — the whole Solar System moving in space — Jupiter hides a Raja-Sun — disturbances in its atmosphere. Siemen's statements — matter in all its 7 states — radiant energy

 absorption of Solar forces — chemical power lost in transit. Jenkins — Sir James Ross — the magnetic theory — planets not yet discovered — Edison's tasimeter — discoverer an F.T.S. The moment of death — influence of last thoughts and desires — the whole life seen in memory — no man dies insane or unconscious. Advice to those assisting at a death-bed — retributive justice — the eighth sphere — Avitchi — Nirvana — the consciousness of the "shell." That which becomes for ever extinct at death — Karma of the personality — immediate incarnation of children. Nature of remembrance of shell — animal's memory not perceptive faculty — shell in aura of medium — perception through borrowed organs — challenge to Spiritualists. The "Spirit" of Zollner knows no more than in life — the recollections of the "Shell" — complete insanity. The shell of A. P. Sinnett and the nature of its consciousness. Sorcerers — Mars and 4 other planets. Obscurations not Pralayas — their duration — the children 5th round men beget — questions pertaining to the highest initiations — men become Gods.


Letter No. 24a — The famous "Contradictions." Sinnett's questions in regard to supposed contradictions and inconsistencies in the teaching received.

Letter No. 24b — K.H. states what an Adept is — his Occult powers. Pleads guilty to an "omission" but not a "contradiction" — beware of trusting Isis Unveiled too implicitly — H.P.B. herself not permitted to understand all that is treated of in Isis — it conceals but does not distort — reincarnation as treated in Isis — Astral monad — personal Ego. Sinnett's chilly mental condition — G.K. produces a portrait of K.H. phenomenally — M. prefers to go to sleep. Replies to the contradictions. Accusations of inconsistency unjust


— due to the conditions under which he writes his letters — K.H. regarded by his colleagues and the Chohans as a lunatic. What happens to every being at death — the shell — no two states in Devachan alike. The Ego in Devachan — Avitcha — love and hatred the only immortal feelings. Wagner and musicians — K.H. pleads guilty to one sin. The impossibility of dealing with Hume — his remarks — a sentimental Becky Sharp.


Letter No. 25 — Devachan — additional explanations —Bacon — the fruition of all aspirations. Attempting to describe the indescribable — requires perceptions of a trained Chela. Time does not exist in Devachan — disapprobation of a lay Chela. Time sense created by ourselves — the bliss of Devachan — woes of Avitchi


— space and time according to Kant. Further explanations of Devachanic existence — pandering to prejudices of Western readers. Explanations of Devachanic states — weary round of birth and death — a colourless personality gets a colourless Devachan — Avitchi the antithesis of Devachan. Hell and Heaven — misconception of terms — Spirit and Soul — individuality — personality — all bliss in Devachan — no failure or disappointment. The Great Reward, Nirvana — Rupa-Loka — Arupa-Loka — Kama-Loka — the summer-land of the Spiritualists. From Kama-Loka to Devachan or Avitchi — infinite differentiation of those states — reviving consciousness. How to understand the doctrine fully — the reward of benevolent men — social status the result of Karma. Lillie's "Buddha and early Buddhism" — proposed scheme for personal intercourse impracticable. Selfishness of T.S. members — sacrifices made by H.P.B. and Olcott — money matters.


Section 3: Probation and Chelaship

Letter No. 26 — Observations regarding H.P.B. and her psychological condition — reasons causing it — one principle left behind. K.H. strongly disapproves of their cruelty to H.P.B.

Letter No. 27 — Necessity of frank speech — danger threatening Theosophical Society — Stainton Moses. The mediumship of S.M. — inspiration not required from disembodied Spirits — truth stands alone.

Letter No. 28 — Englishmen incapable of assimilating Hindu thought — K.H. speaks frankly to Hume. Erroneous ideas regarding T.S. — branches of T.S. as harbingers of Universal Brotherhood — Occult instruction by the Brothers. Attempt to establish secret school of magic in London — complete failure — Lord Lytton — British T.S., of the Universal Brotherhood in name only — gravitates at best towards Quietism. Observations on the attitude of Sinnett and Hume towards K.H. — His exposition of truth. Thorough criticisms of statements made in Hume's letter — distortion of K.H.'s motives — complete lack of understanding. Patience and courtesy of K.H. in dealing with subject — a quiet reproof — Hindus will always be the Masters of the West in Spiritual Sciences. That which they value most highly — the kind of men the Masters want and do not want — their characteristics. The keepers of the sacred Light — their knowledge the gift of the Gods — the Kantian note — Hume the type of the Spiritual failure and unconscious egotism of this Age. Observations on mesmerism — what conscience will and will not do. Imagination as well as will creates


— the monster of suspicion.


Letter No. 29 — M. condones Hume's attitude — gratitude a sacred debt. No quarrelling among the Adepts — the value of primary facts — thoughts before words. K.H. speaks to M. of his pupils before departure — M.'s promise — the love of M. for his Brother — he watches over the work. Hume's feelings — misunderstood words — but not by M. Further observations on Hume's statements — injustice of his treatment of H.P.B. The necessity of knowing oneself — need of a clear understanding — Hume the embodiment of pride. The standards of the Mahatmas — Hume's words to M. and K.H. — his constant attitude — will not be contradicted. Hume considers himself slighted and wronged — his defence of the weak


— M.'s generous estimate of his character — Mahatmas untouched by personal pain or pleasure — M.'s Rajput blood resents hurt to a woman's feelings. Hume makes further communication impossible by his attitude — cannot realise the motives or the actions of the Mahatmas — blinded by pride. No permission given for phenomena — their appreciation of both Sinnett and Hume — hopes for the T.S. — law is law — Mahatmas will do their duty. Phenomena will never shake the erroneous beliefs of Western mind — so long as men doubt there will be curiosity and enquiry — trying to read the things of the Spirit with the eyes of the flesh. The mark of the Adept.


Letter No. 30 — K.H. speaks out — criticism of Hume's letter re Fern. Hume mistaken from first to last — Hume's letter to K.H. quoted. Fern endeavours to "humbug" M. — the ordeals of a Chela — what probation means. The freedom of the Chela's choice — his freedom of expression — methods of training absolutely opposite to those of the Jesuits — the latter false to truth and to humanity. The searching of a Chela's weak points — how the Masters regard truth — examples given — M.'s method of expressing himself. K.H. makes some observations on Mahatma M. — also on Hume's faults. A temperate reproof to Hume. What is expected of a Chela — the true value of a man. The unworthiness of certain friends — underhand methods — the sincerity of those who protect Hume — how a Chela is tested — Damodar — H.P.B. — Olcott — tests applied to Fern — nobody humbugged — H.P.B.'s opinion of Fern — her advice to him. Words of appreciation to Hume — his dissatisfaction — his claims and demands; 2nd class minds — friendly truths — not to be resented — gratitude of the Mahatmas for all H. has done.

Letter No. 31— From Terich-Mir. The key to the phenomena of Occult Sciences — reason elevated to supersensuous wisdom — perfect comprehension of the Adept — his reward — the culmination of knowledge and wisdom; K.H.'s years of labour — the would-be disciple encouraged to pass on the truth to his fellow-creatures — H.P.B. ill.

Letter No. 32 — Hume puts his foot in a hornet's nest. Unsatisfactory relations between Europeans — Hume's insulting expressions towards even K.H.'s great Master. Hume's accusations — the Mahatmas' patience.

Letter No. 33 — Apparent contradiction between notes from M. and K.H. — approve of plan to form nucleus of honest scientific enquirers — no-one works in vain — requests Sinnett to work in sympathy with A. Besant.

Letter No. 34 — Mahatmas complain of being constantly misunderstood — impossibility of satisfying Hume

— the Society will never perish as an Institution.

Letter No. 35 — Observations on phenomena — Sinnett's disappointment — methods for development of Occult faculties — no culture will supply psychic idiosyncrasy if lacking; M. deals with some spooks.

Letter No. 36 — M. refuses to make puja to Hume.

Letter No. 37 — Written by the "Disinherited" at K.H.'s bidding — words of approval and encouragement to Sinnett — the power of projecting and feeling force. Observations on Hume's work and his unchanged state of selfishness — his professed love of humanity.

Letter No. 38 — Disappointment in store for K.H.— the libel law — reflections on female branch and females — the secret cause of events. The Brothers — Brotherhood — the love of humanity — essential qualifications of a Chela — selfishness and exclusiveness of all peoples.

Letter No. 39 — The Arhat vows — defence of H.P.B. — M. creates his dinner — the "Disinherited."

Letter No. 40 — Nothing can help T.S. while Founders are under a cloud. Incessant attacks — a devotee of error — forced psychic vision by Hathayog — general law of vision determined by grade of man's spirit and soul. A Society whose Guru was no initiate — idolators — permission to join them to study — remembering promise to K.H.

Letter No. 41 — H.P.B.'s condition — only a shell at times — encouragement to Sinnett.

Letter No. 42 — M. repeats that no regular instruction is possible — much that can be done with K.H.'s help


— Hume disinclined to disabuse public mind. A solitary pearl is soon out-shone in a heap of false diamonds


— the trials of earth life — their conquest — "fuller introduction into the mysteries depends on yourself."


Letter No. 43 — "My impatient friend" — M.'s attitude — an Adept's duty not controlled by social affections


— Sinnett forced himself on K.H. No right to influence one who is not a Chela — Sinnett the victim of Maya


— Hume's selfishness — the personality and the Ego. Bennett superior to many in spite of unpolished exterior — K.H.'s attitude to Bennett — Jesus and Magdalene — the inner man alone counts with the Mahatmas — friendly confidences. The dangers of phenomena — wisdom gives all things in time — food for the mind must be assimilated slowly.


Letter No. 44 — The Septenary trial of the T.S. — H.P.B. and Olcott begin their work — their qualifications. Only those who have proved themselves faithful to truth allowed further intercourse with the Mahatmas.

Letter No. 45 — K.H. returns from a journey. The "three poisons" — the five obscurities — try to cherish less lust and desire — "a psychic Society is being founded in our midst". One indiscretion ruins work of 7 years

— the danger of such action must be counteracted — drawing closer to the Masters by purified heart and developing will — advice and consolation — Sinnett belongs to the Masters — the imperishable record of the Master. "Your Karma is ours" — the man of the world — the soul searching for the Masters. The "Tathagata" light — kind advice — apprehensions must be set aside — regarding his co-worker's enmity.

Letter No. 46 — M. comments on Hume's behaviour — neither reverence or common sense in his head — abominable attitude towards Mahatmas and H.P.B. — what they desire of him and wish him to know. Further comments on Hume — M.'s ultimatum — H.P.B.'s illness caused by Hume's behaviour — M.'s displeasure.

Letter No. 47 — Work of T.S. secretly linked on to other work throughout the world — the Greek Brother. Crookes and "radiant matter" — H.P.B. wrongfully accused of being untruthful — frank opinions and some advice — cycles. Martyrdom pleasant to look at, hard to bear.

Letter No. 48 — Knowledge and the path — the Adamantine Rocks of Occult Laws — the heights to be reached before the whole truth can be seen — the keeping and the breaking of the Law — the man who would obtain all must be cold — Oxley has possibilities — his mistakes. The limitations of the ordinary seers —

incredible statements of Maitland and Mrs. K. Vegetarians and flesh eaters — the effects of wine on seers — effect of emanations on Mahatmas — seers and their revelations — no two agree — mediums and clairvoyance. We do not require a passive mind. The journal of the Society worth Sinnett's attention — its hidden beauties and values — our ways are the ways of madmen. Sinnett begins his studies at the wrong end


— key to the writing of the ancient Occultists.


Letter No. 49 — Correspondence established for the good of the many — Eliphas Levi's Haute Magie — St. Germain. Pythagorean doctrines — "the limit of the natural" — the "Spiritualist" — its fight against Theosophists — on Adepts. K.H. not annoyed by newspaper ribald notices — sacrilegious utterances of J.K.


— difficulty of accepting pledges — Occult Science communicated by degrees. Conditions governing the communication of secrets — illumination comes from within — means to this end known publicly for ages


— self sacrifice of Guru. Dangers of giving more knowledge than man is ready for — like an infernal machine in ignorant hands — time approaching for Triumph of Truth — Shammars active in Europe — Spiritualism — the Adepts delay progress to Eternal Rest. The price to be paid — the willingness of K.H. to pay it — pupils would be more thankful and patient if they knew the true facts — Lamaism — power of great Adepts — Sinnett gropes in the dark. Occult World discussed at Galaring-Tcho Lamasery.


Letter No. 50 — An unreasonable man — filled with pride — Mahatma K.H. expresses his mind — weariness and disheartened feelings.

Letter No. 51 — Phenomenon for Colonel Chesney. Further remarks on production of this phenomenon — probations hard all round — deception a test for those of unclean heart.

Letter No. 52 — Hume's jealousy and abusiveness. Remarks on his self-satisfaction — constant accusations


— H.P.B. and C.C.M. — explanation of teaching given in Isis — Christians and Spiritualists only mention body and soul. Two "souls" in man — H.P.B. obeyed orders — further remarks concerning Hume. Hume's reasons for writing offensive article in Theosophist — K.H.'s frank criticism of his real and alleged motives. Dishonest methods — refuses to recognise powers or knowledge of Brotherhood — the penalty of publicity. Facts to be transmitted to Hume — in what light he is considered by the Chelas — the protest of the Chelas — S. stands far higher in estimation of Mahatmas — M.'s opinion. Hume's punishment must be complete — anti-European rules — Dugpas wrote letters to Fern.


Letter No. 53 — An account of a doubtful story and incidents connected with Fern — his deceptions believed implicitly by Hume. Ways of communication with outer worlds — M.'s views do not agree with K.H.'s regarding Hume — refuses to satisfy his whims — M.'s arguments in detail. Manner in which letters have been transmitted — Dugpa methods — Fern's fall — deceptions practised on Hume. Mahatma K.H.'s likeness


— its delivery. Sinnett is advised not to judge by appearances — great crisis in November. K.H. never trusts women generally — his reason.


Letter No. 54 — Hume's deposition and abdication — subsequent events. "good old Swami" — his tirade against the Mahatmas — reasons for not wishing his severance from the Society — Tibetan proverb applied to Hume — Fern to be watched. Regarding C. C. Massey, his chief fault, weakness — K.H. objects to his letters being circulated — Hume disparages their sacred philosophy. The European standpoint — Western people cannot grasp wisdom — the wealth of the mind — Massey — readiness to learn — K.H. willing to help him — much information in S.'s hands, useful to all — C.C.M. prejudiced against H.P.B. St. Germain — Cagliostro — Dr. and Mrs. Hollis-Billing — traducers of innocent women. Exposure of dishonest enemies — their unworthy conduct — wish to ruin H.P.B. The Swami's attack on the Founders — S. Moses and his suspicions — H.P.B. and phenomena produced for C.C.M. H.P.B. believed to be arch-plotter — deceiver, etc.


— Swami was an initiated Yogi — H.C. a Chela — preferred left path — system of the Mahatmas. The experiences by which a Chela becomes efficient — H.P.B. and her one fault — C.C.M. shaken, suspicious and lacks self-confidence — H.P.B.'s phenomena. C.C.M. victim of wicked plot — how far H.P.B. is really guilty of deceit. H.P.B. over-zealous — her desire to give credit to the Mahatmas for all phenomena — her impulsive nature — creating causes — her real powers of a very high order. Self-abnegation cannot be called dishonesty — her generosity — terribly punished — her exalted friends traitors and impostors — true history of so-called deception — enthusiasm for those she loves — her description of M.'s beauty makes him swear and break his pipe — description of meeting between Mahatinas and H.P.B. — her passionate devotion —


their appreciation of all her splendid qualities. The subject of probation repulsive to Sinnett's mind — reasons why certain men failed when tested. H.P.B. a helpless, broken-hearted woman — the testing of Fern — every postulant thus tested — the conqueror crowns himself. Reform in which Sinnett's help is desired — impartiality towards all creeds Eastern and Western. Remodelling of branches — objects for lodge work — religious, educational, philosophical — paper for the Theosophist — solidarity of thought and action. Independent action in everything which does not clash with the principles of the Society — Hume condemns the faulty system of the Mahatmas. Theosophist should be made distinctive — cyclic crisis — a goat eats Sinnett's letter to K.H. — amusing incident. The Chohan repairs the letter.

Letter No. 55 — The ordeal of the aspirant to occult knowledge — the opposition of the Church and Anglo-Indian officials to the T.S. — Dugpas in Bhootan and the Vatican — personal opposition and ridicule — bogus letters of H.P.B.'s — the death struggle between Truth and Error — the light-bearers of preceding generations lost their lives — necessity for courage — ultimate success certain. Mediumistic sensitives — elementaries — unwholesome influences — wood and incense burning for fumigation and protection — clean living the best protection — talismans — H.P.B. takes a step — heavy responsibility of Olcott and Sinnett — Karma of the Occult World and Esot: Buddhism — advised to stand by the T.S. — original policy must be vindicated — the Society cannot stand based upon phenomena and Thibetan Brothers alone — the latter should be kept secret — loyalty to the Idea and not to a personal leader. What a Mahatma is — not beyond human mistakes — phenomena of thought transference and precipitations — Akasic libraries — the Kiddle case. Christian-mission — Coulomb conspiracy — correspondence with the "Inner Circle" — pledge themselves to K.H. — the Maha-Chohan — communication through Damodar — and H.P.B. — her phenomena must be disconnected from T.S.

Letter No. 56 — Condition of A. O. Hume — maddened by evil powers — a fakir. Evil effects of Pranayan

— produces mediumship — Hume's selfish vanity and combativeness — danger to the T.S. — Dayanand S.; "Mr. Isaacs" — K.H. and "Ram lal."

Letter No. 57 — Adepts and their methods not understood; C.C.M. on the list of failures — not a medium — the best of men but lacking in intuition; Europeans on probation — 3 fail — of societies — Anna Kingsford's inspirers — THE PERFECT WAY — A.K. a fifth rounder — her vanity — latent sense of Messiahship — Reincarnation a la Allan Kardec — A.K.'s allegiance to Brothers not expected — danger to the British T.S. — C.M.'s delusions in regard to K.H. and H.P.B.; Hume and Fern — probation brings out both virtues and vices — Fern's characteristics — western code of honour — Hume's characteristics. Criterion of a "gentleman" — vilification of M. and K.H. — a dangerous "friend" — the struggle for adeptship — the delusions of self and vanity. Adepts do nothing without a purpose; Hume opposed to the system of "The Brothers" — finds Them wicked selfish men — their message tainted by deception and sorcery — their chelas slaves and untrustworthy — their Society a whited sepulchre, etc.; Hume's cunning and diplomacy — accused of falsification. T. Subba Row — Hume claims added powers — practice of Pranayan makes of him a yogi — serious charge and evidence against Hume; A.P.S. advised to go to England.

Letter No. 58 — D.K.'s personal interest in A.P.S. Apathy of K.H.'s countrymen — K.H. asks two favours — is prepared to teach British T.S. through agency of A.P.S. — but not to give proofs of the existence of the Masters — ordered to sweep away every vestige of such proof.

Letter No. 59 — The altruist of Rothney. Change of "being" in A.P.S. — difficulty in understanding the doctrines re Devachan — the fickleness of "Society" — the Theosophist's duty. Chelas who demand more power — a necromantic Guru — the downfall and despair of a Chela — his condition — an "animated poison bag." Chelas and lay Chelas in July Theosophist — William Crookes joins the Society — his discoveries — three additional states of matter still to be found by Science — the word "impossible" not in occultist's vocabulary — no man living can make claims on Adepts — their attractions are spiritual not intellectual — Bacon and Aristotle. Spiritual development — the Adepts' standard of greatness — sincere hunger for the truth — the work of the S.P.R. — mesmeric cures — the purity of the psychopathist — his motives — a lock of the hair of an Adept. The Buddhistic speculations of Rhys Davids — unable to understand Esotericism — his definition of "Avalokiteshvara" an absurdity — K.H. explains the term fully — Kwan-shai-yin. The origin of the Christian Trinity, transubstantiation, Immaculate Conception — Buddhism and personal God — the meaning of the interlaced triangles — geometrical synthesis of whole occult doctrine — contains the squaring

of the circle — problems of Life and Death — mystery of Evil. The 6 pointed star is the perfect seven — the number 6 — the Macrocosm and Microcosm — the contre of a circle and its circumference — the three Gunas — Jivatma the 7th Principle — Avalokitesvara — THE GREAT ACTIVE and THE GREAT PASSIVE — Purusha and Prakriti — THE PERFECT WAY — Adonai. Pythagoras and the number 2 — the dual monad in manifestation — the perfect square — the WORD — The Great Deep — Maya — Mulaprakriti the one reality — Mr. Roden Noel — The Unmanifested Circle — Absolute Life non-existent outside the triangle and perfect square — a Gnostic treatise. No amateur can rival the proficient in occult research — the pseudo-Saviours of the world are legion — nothing was ever lost by trying.

Letter No. 60 — "Our doubts are traitors" Chelas of contrary magnetisms during development — partrait by Schmiechen — artist helped by "M."

Letter No. 61 — Mohini — a Chela not a free man — he suffered from the cold — his tour through European countries — Arundales — justice in the Kingsford row — personal spite.

Letter No. 62 — Unfit for practical occultism — immutable laws — an effort to open the intuition — duty, stronger than friendship or love to the Masters — the indestructable cement of the Brotherhood — the delusions of the intellect — cold spiritually blind reason — the path to the occult sciences surrounded with pitfalls. The furies to be conquered and destroyed by the aspirant — the qualities demanded in the disciple ­

 his freedom for the work — rigidity of the regulations never relaxed — the real reason of the failure of the "Phoenix" newspaper venture — the Ilbert Bill — the working of Karmic Law — contempt for the dark races

 no exhibition of psychic or occult powers permitted — the London Lodge and Anna Kingsford — A.P.S. finds H.S.O. unfit socially and intellectually for London — treats him and H.P.B. cruelly — M.'s natural brusqueness — carelessness — A.P.S. not unjustly treated — his spite against A.K. Unjust suspicion of


H.P.B. and H.S.O. — Mohini and Mrs. Gebhard; H.S.O. accused by A.P.S. of falsehood, slander, etc. — Olcott's work gives good results — suspicion — occult truth must be found in the soul — Mrs. H. an excellent but untrained clairvoyant; A.P.S. attempts to defy occult laws and gets hurt — intellect alone not all-powerful — A.P.S. asked to be present and speak at meeting.

Letter No. 63 — The publication of these letters — the questions involved — the real vital errors in Esoteric Buddhism and Man — much made purposely obscure in the letters — they were not written for publication or public comment — neither K.H. or M. would ever consent to the letters being published. Would-be Chelas and dangers of probation.

Letter No. 64 — The mysteries of Chelaship — the uncharted ocean of occultism — necessity of full confidence in the Adepts — beware of a prejudiced mind — occult laws often seem cruel amid unjust. Cataclysms are necessary — unselfishness physical and spiritual — vanity and conceit more serious when harboured in the higher principles — the shield of the disciple — the mass of human sin and frailty gathered into one period of the life of a Chela. Selfishness in inner aspirations — the Lord Buddha. The Chela must not judge on mere appearances.

Letter No. 65 — A. Gebhard's accusation — failure amid success — distressing incidents — the attempt to open the eyes of the world fails — the conspiracy of the Missionaries against theosophy — "Christ or the Founders" — the S.P.R. and Mr. Hodgson. Mr. Lane Fox and the T.S. — Chelas detest European Theosophists — the end of projected occult instructions — the refusal of Europeans to receive instruction through Damodar and Subba Row — Damodar goes to Thibet — Subba Row suspected — Count St. Germain and Cagliostro — current ideas of the Masters and laws of occultism inaccurate — K.H.'s western education — Sir C. Grandison — western etiquette and Thibetan customs. Accused of plagiarism — the dictionary of Pai-Wouen-Yen-Fu — works of reference — Kiddle incident — "Lal Singh" a nom de plume — not always infallible Mahatmas — knowledge of occult forces the fruit of generations of research — occultists risk their lives — magic and superstition. The teaching of Devachan criticised — the keys of Life and Death — crisis in T.S. a question of perdition or salvation to thousands — progress or retrogression of human race — doubts and foul suspicions beset the neophyte — the old Masonic Lodges — tests of courage, etc. — psychological and other tests — Raj-yog tests — develop every germ of good and bad. The rule inflexible, no-one escapes — few Europeans have stood the test — failure in Europe with few exceptions — henceforth neutrality of T.S. in occult teaching to be enforced — instruction will be given only to individuals

Letter No. 66 — Common post used instead of H.P.B. — Sinnett's relations with H.P.B. — necessary to watch himself — correspondence may have to be broken — uncharitable spirit — narrow sympathies — the crisis fanned from Tchigadze — A.P.S. laughs at probation — the guardians of occult knowledge — M. and

K.H. the only Brothers in favour of disseminating their knowledge. H.P.B. sometimes dangerous — the best agent available — letters will cease at her death — "our ways not your ways" — H.P.B. complains of A.P.S. to her Master — A.P.S. resents the personal wishes of the Masters. His pride must be protected at all costs — dugpas and psychic shocks — pride and egotism — A.P.S. denies applying to be accepted as a Chela; H.P.B. and H.S.O. not perfect — adversity discovers the real man — karma of the group — sinking the personality

— higher instruction only given to the true Theosophist.

Letter No. 67 — K.H. to H.S. Olcott. Ordered home — the state of India — agitations — Bishenlal's attempt to cross the Himalayas — the Kingsford Maitland party. Dugpas provoke his vanity — three cases of insanity among lay Chelas — few men know themselves — the ordeal of crude Chelaship.

Letter No. 68 — Discipline of family life — conquest of self — spiritual progress the most important.

Letter No. 69 — The terms Brahma — Pitri — Devalokas defined — Nirvana — Devachan — real knowledge a spiritual state — absolute light and darkness.

Letter No. 70 — The probation of A.P.S.

Letter No. 71 — M.'s "tobacco-machine" — clouds on the horizon.

Letter No. 72 — Chelas never guided. Taught by experience.

Letter No. 73 — Bad feeling against K.H.

Letter No. 74 — No-one cares for real objects of the Society — personal devotion only — "M." erases a part of one of his letters.

Letter No. 75 — A.P.S. accuses H.P.B. unjustly.

Letter No. 76 — Subba Row and Chela training — initiated Brahmin and Hume — the Genius of Pride.

Section 4: The Phoenix Venture and the Condition of India

Letter No. 77 — Colonel Gordon — a Howrah Branch — Eclectic — K.H. not born for diplomacy and intrigue. Funds for the "Phoenix" — K.H. loses some of his optimism — women as angels or furies.

Letter No. 78 — The Chohan's views on the "Phoenix" project — the journal desirable — effort must be made by outsiders — Masters not separated from the world of action as long as T.S. exists. May effect the destiny of a nation — questions of capital and finance — personal remuneration — control of the journal. Sir Ashley Eden — a Sinking Fund — the Nizam — Holkar — Benares — Baroda. Questions of management — Hume and dugpas.

Letter No. 79 — K.H. no business man — Mr. Dare — the Brotherhood will help the enterprise — the attractions of India to the mystic — A.P.S. wrong in acting for K.H.'s sake — good actions bring own reward

— a new cycle begins.

Letter No. 80 — Chance a squinting jade — Hume delineates the true character of the Brothers — A.P.S. advised to act on his own judgment.

Letter No. 81 — The condition of the people of India. Govindan Lal — Olcott sees Baroda and Holkar — little patriotism — rekindling the beacon of Aryan occultism — the task of the T.S. impeded by would-be

Letter No. 82 — Le quart d'heure de Rabelais — the crisis in the affairs of the "Phoenix" — Sinnett's choice

— asked to oppose the work of the Masters apparently — the Bengal Rent Bill — European notions of right and wrong receive a shock — occult antidotes — the Jesuitical "end justifies the means" — the words of the Lord Buddha — K.H. explains the situation — "Phoenix" to oppose the Bengal Rent Bill. In the event of refusal a new editor to be found — the Zemindars — Lord Cornwallis. The issues at stake — the future of the "Phoenix" and future relationship of A.P.S. with K.H. — bringing the national boil to a head — Lord Cornwallis's mistake — Mussulman ruler and East India Company. The Ryots — the Chohan in India — perpetual agreement — the real aim of Lord Ripon's reforms — not meant for India. Protestant England aimed at — the invisible coils of Rome — the pledges of the Government — Khirajee land — Mussulman laws — spirit of Khiraj and Ooshr. The brightest jewel in the crown of England — the Chohan and K.H. — the real Viceroy of India — not at Simla but at Rome — "Esoteric Buddhism" correct, if incomplete. Obscurations — inner and outer rounds — Massey concludes the Masters have no God — each man's God within himself.

Letter No. 83 — K.H. gives A.P.S. his freedom of choice — success of "Phoenix" doubtful — A.P.S. must take his own responsibility. Misunderstands law of Karma — the strong feelings in the national soul. The good of humanity the only consideration of the Chela — personal feelings and reputation not considered — the financial prospects of the "Phoenix." Black clouds on the political sky — further correspondence permitted to H.P.B. — the eighth sphere mystery.

Section 5: The London Lodge of The Theosophical Society

Letter No. 84 — Paralytic calm of the L.L. — C. C. Massey — Anma Kingsford — Olcott's visit; Mohini a Chela.

Letter No. 85 — Addressed to members of the L.L. A.K. to remain President of L.L. — the Chohan's wish — A.K.'s personal predilections of no consequence — dissemination of truth — Hermetic Philosophy. The boundless ocean of Truth — three centres of the occult Brotherhood — H.P.B. and Subba Row pupils of the same Master — the Chaldean Mage — West requires different presentation of occult sciences to the East — the amelioration of man's condition the object — Truth has no ear-mark; A. Kingsford and Sinnett opposite poles — both necessary for T.S. in England — A.K.'s presentation better adapted to Christian ears — her strife against anti-vivisection — the teaching of Northern Buddhist Schools. More caution necessary in exposition of secret teachings — wise toleration of differing opinions and beliefs in Indian T.S. — harmonious discord — the key note in Nature — A.K. loyal to Truth — "return good for good, for evil — justice"; A.K. and A.P.S. expectcd to work on parallel lines — agree to disagree in details.

Letter No. 86 — A.K.'s apologetic letter to H.P.B. — L.L. a tail for her to wag — her anti-vivisection and vegetarianism win over the Chohan — personal vanity — letter contains an occult influence — to be read at a General Meeting. Devachan — Nirvana — the Ego — space is infinity itself — the relation of the number of incarnations to the cleverness of an individual — Darwin's law of heredity. The condition of C.C.M. — Charles Bradlaugh not immoral — Mrs. Besant — the "Fruits of Philosophy" pernicious — the fruits of Sodom and Gomorrah.

Letter No. 87 — The postponement of L.L. election — the question of personal loyalty and authority of names. Gravest evil neutralised by hastening a crisis — oppression of a priest-ridden world — psychic growth accompanies individual effort — Massey — Ward — Kingsford — A.K.'s mistrust of appeals to authority. Too much talk of the Masters — disloyalty to principles of the Society would not be tolerated — usefulness of a Lodge — largely depends on President and Secretary.

Section 6: Spiritualism and Phenomena

Letter No. 88 — Magnetic conditions necessary for test phenomena.

Letter No. 89 — Objections to spiritualistic phenomena and mediums. Occult science the extinguisher of superstitions — K.H. arranges to appear to the medium Eglinton on the "Vega" — his reasons.

Letter No. 90 — From Stainton Moses to Sinnett. S.M. is puzzled — says Brothers are mistaken in regard to him. His guide Imperator — documentary evidence of communication, etc. — Imperator knows nothing of the Lodge or Brotherhood. S.M.'s guide his own sixth principle — finds spiritualism and occultism incompatible. Comment by K.H. What is a "Brother"? — can be ignorant of many things — not so with an omniscient Planetary Spirit — Russian child medium — Jesus and John the Baptist — Jesus a spiritual abstraction — Mrs. Kingsford converses with "God" — receives a written communication from a dog.

Letter No. 91a, Letter No. 91b — C. C. Massey — Mrs. Billing.

Letter No. 92 — Actions of Founders and Chelas not controlled by the Masters — Hurrychund — Wimbridge — Mrs. Billing a medium. Materialization phenomena — truth rarely wanted — a loyal Theosophist — phenomena the playthings of the tyro — the Masters offer their knowledge to be accepted or rejected on its merits — "Ski" used as a mouthpiece by the Brothers. H.P.B. asks an exception for C.C.M. — "Ski" a medium for 20 years — her phenomena pass the most crucial tests — several false "Skis." An occult forger.

Letter No. 93 — Mediums and Spooks permitted to personate the Brothers — and forge their hand-writing. K.H.'s explanation of the Kiddle incident — "M. A. Oxon" — K.H. accused of plagiarism — the Banner of Light. Woman a calamity in the fifth race. K.H. dictates a letter mentally — psychic chemistry — precipitation by a young Chela-American Spiritualists — experiments of S.P.R. in "mental telegraphy." The modus operandi of precipitation — psychic printing machine. The medium and the Chela diametrically dissimilar — discrepancy in "Occult World" — H.P.B. denies that K.H.'s first letter was written by himself.

K.H. born into a new and higher light — Oniniscience and infallible prevision exist but for the highest Chohans — the restored version of page 39 Occult World — Spiritualists and Spiritualism — the Rosetta Stone of the Kiddle incident. The Kiddlites and the Koothumites — an Adept does not cease to be a man — ignorant surmise and personal insult — distrust and prejudice contagious — A.K. invokes K.H. in trance. She takes a fruitless ramble through space — K.H. unaware of search — move in different astral circles — too haughty and imperious — Mrs. Gebhard a genuine sterling nature — K.H. en route for Madras, Singapore and Burma — H.P.B. not in disgrace. Subba Row's writings.

Letter No. 94 — Kiddle incident — poking fun at Occult Science.

Letter No. 95 — Preparation and training of Eglinton — the "Vega experiment" — bigotry and blindness of the Spiritualists — professional mediums — Hume has great possibilities in front of him — reviewing The Perfect Way — attracting the Chohan's attention and its significance.

Letter No. 96 — M. smokes his pipe — Piccadilly spooks — phenomena — Karma of the spiritualists — M. prefers Eglinton's clairvoyance to Mrs. Kingsford's.

Letter No. 97 — The defects of young disciples — few true to original programme.

Section 7: Miscellaneous Letters

Letter No. 98 — K.H.'s comments on a letter of Hume's — the people of Tibet untainted by vices of civilization — A.O.H. a friend of perishing humanity — General Schoolmaster for Tibet — the Adept the freest of men.

Letter No. 99 — From A. O. Hume to K.H. Says K.H. does not understand him — Russia and Tibet. Advocates repeated phenomena — H. S. Olcott — Jesuit organisation — blind obedience.

Letter No. 100 — Hume thinks of going to Tibet — insane plan — the Chohans against him — dangers of

every step. Letter No. 101 — "Blessed is he who knows and appreciates Koothoomi." Letter No. 102 — "Ou tout ou rien." Letter No. 103 — Chelas neglect orders — Maharajah of Kashmir. Letter No. 104 — Hume annoys K.H. — New Year Festivals in Tibet — K.H. goes a journey — M. takes his

place — "the Disinherited."

Letter No. 105 — Hume accuses the Masters of being liars — H.P.B. quarrels with D.K. — "K.H. no

gentleman"; Hume's infallibility.

Letter No. 106 — Measures for protecting Tibet — the priestly King.

Letter No. 107 — H.P.B.'s ill-health — mental anxiety.

Letter No. 108 — A Ladakee Chela.

Letter No. 109 — K.H. and a seance.

Letter No. 110 — Dharbagiri Nath — the best punishment for an accepted Chela — dodging the Masters' eye

— young Chelas — Hume's articles; H.P.B. not safe in Sikkim — a Chela's indiscretion. Letter No. 111 — K.H.'s two Chelas to A.P.S. Letter No. 112 — Colonel Chesney's letter to K.H. — Fern a humbug — endeavours to test the Masters —

lay Chelas — Hume alienates the Chohan and M.; W. Oxley. Letter No. 113 — Funny notions about honour — Fern hallucinated — Fern's trap for M. Letter No. 114 — Zenana women of India. Letter No. 115 — A.P.S. advised to act on his own judgment — Occult influences. Letter No. 116 — K.H.'s disgust with Hume. Letter No. 117 — Mohini. Letter No. 118 — Fraudulent intrusion. Children's diseases — K.H. sends a lock of his hair. Letter No. 119 — Newspaper cutting and K.H.'s comment. Letter No. 120 — Action of hatred. Letter No. 121 — The Occult World presented to the Chohan's notice. Letter No. 122 — Eglington at Calcutta. Letter No. 123 — K.H.'s difficulties. Letter No. 124 — A.P.S. asked to find three coloured pebbles in Venice. Letter No. 125 — K.H. issues a denial of the claims of W. Oxley medium. He never conversed with K.H. —

three secret words. Letter No. 126 — A Post Office address in N.W. Provinces.

Letter No. 127 — Extracts from letters to A.P.S. and A.O.H. — 6th and 7th principles never were within man

 Anaxagoras — the "Nous" — Pythagoras the permanent and impermanent — words of Buddha — lucidity

 too much sugar in diet — method of developing lucidity. Letter No. 128 — Telegram announcing Damodar's departure. Letter No. 129 — Telegram re Damodar.



Letter No. 130 --From T. Subba Row. States the conditions on which he will give A.P.S. instruction in Occult Science — wavering state of mind fatal.

Letter No. 131 — From T. Subba Row. Sinnett gives qualified consent — impossible to give him practical instruction — rules inflexible — the sacrifices demanded by Occult Science — acquisition of psychic powers not the object of occult training — they alone will never secure immortality. The true aim of Occult Science

— prepared to give theoretical instruction only.

Letter No. 132 — T. Subba Row — the Rishi M.'s system of training — the first three initiations; K.H.'s comment.

Letter No. 133 — From H.P.B. Warns A.P.S. of self-deception — discusses his attitude to K.H.'s letter — "Olcott behaved like an ass" — why the Masters liked Olcott. The S.P.R. and its bugbear Theosophy.

Letter No. 134 — A dictated letter from M. All Theosophists endeavour to correspond with him — do not deserve such privilege. What is expected of them — thousands of Fakirs, Sannyasis, etc., have never seen or heard of them — they are on the path of error — bad physical magnetic emanations not insurmountable — faith in God and Gods attract the worst influences — the Chohans of darkness preside at Pralayas. All is contrast in the Universe — the Gods of the bigoted Hindus, Christians, and Mohammedans — the work of the Red-caps — Brothers can prolong life but cannot destroy death or evil — details about H.P.B.'s identity.

Letter No. 135 — From H.P.B. Explains what she said about seven objective planets and septenary chains.

Letter No. 136 — From H.P.B. Sinnett's invitation to her — reasons for refusing — what she endured —

K.H. and M. prepare to work — H.P.B.'s hour of triumph approaches — Sinnett does not know the real

H.P.B. Her inner real self imprisoned — prophecies that Sinnett will one day blaspheme against K.H. — their benevolent contempt for H.P.B.

Letter No. 137 — D.K. precipitates a letter phenomenally in H.P.B.'s cabin.

Letter No. 138 — From H.P.B. New battle to be fought — K.H.'s observations on the T.S. — H.P.B. now accused of fraud — Mahatmas dragged before the public — Hodgson's attitude — hopeless situation — happy Damodar — the land of Bliss; Hume wants to save the Society — meeting called — his plans — his suggestions rejected — phenomena must be prohibited. Her physical condition — transmission of letters — Arthur Gebhard — dying people do not tell lies — H.P.B. never a deceiver — explains the methods of occult transmission of letters; H.P.B. "a fraud with excellent qualities" — explains what happened to Gebhard's letter — no fraud; T.S. will live in India but seems doomed in Europe — Hodgson's investigation — the opposition of the Padris — her trials — cannot trust her friends. Propaganda against the Founders — Oakleys advise H.P.B. to resign — pledges herself not to mention the Masters' names — try to deserve personal communication with the Master. Probably her last letter.

Letter No. 139 — From H.P.B. She urges Sinnett to develop his intuition — explains about a letter of K.H. which Sinnett suspected. S. asked not to be ungrateful and not to misunderstand — what H.P.B. saw in K.H.'s aura — Prince's Hall meeting a failure. Chelas take the left-hand path — nearing the end — Gladstone — the Jesuits.

Letter No. 140 — From H.P.B. The Countess a great clairvoyant — H.P.B. describes a vision — K.H. teaches her English — M. sends her back to Europe — parting words of K.H. — she writes Isis Unveiled at K.H.'s dictation — her English. The writing of K.H.'s letters — did he write them himself? — precipitation — either H.P.B. invented the Mahatmas or she did not. The Secret Doctrine — truth will triumph — Hume's lies.

Letter No. 141 — H.P.B. in Sinnett's hands — Mrs. Leadbeater — Gladstone a Roman Catholic. The condition of the T.S. in Europe — India — America — the indestructibility of the Society — the efforts of the dugpas — the T.S. in need of quality and not quantity of members — the two courses before the London Lodge — by their fruits shall ye know them. Worldly society in the L.L. — A.P.S. incapable of perceiving the truth — no inner group consecrated to the truth — the last trial of a Chela. The necessity of spiritual discernment — nothing can kill the London Lodge except passivity — human dirt never sticks. Sinnett urged to develop his intuition.

Letter No. 142a — Memorandum by Damodar. The Theosophical Society considered a religious sect — if based upon universal Brotherhood the occult study should be secret — sacred knowledge should not be vulgarised — unconsciously misleading the public as to management of the Society — the Adepts do not control the Society — admission of members — fees — phenomena hunters.

Letter No. 142b — Comment by K.H. on Damodar's memorandum.

Letter No. 143 — Reply of K.H. to a query of A. P. Sinnett.

Letter No. 144 — A fragment from K.H.

Letter No. 145 — A fragment from K.H.

Mars and Mercury

Sinnett reopens the controversy — implications against H.P.B. — Mrs. Besant's statements in Lucifer on the subject — the facts in the light of K.H.'s letter — the misunderstood passage — Mrs. Besant's "categorical statement that Mars and Mercury belong to Earth Chain" — quotations "from the Secret Doctrine" — the whole theory proves false.

The Writing of the Mahatma Letters by A. T. Barker

Top of Page


Mr. Sinnett in his posthumous work "The Early Days of Theosophy in Europe" reopens this old controversy, and in the course of his remarks he makes many insinuations of a personal nature against Madame Blavatsky which are as untrue of her, as they are unworthy of her old colleague. In Chapter IX p. 92 of that work after saying that Madame Blavatsky had stated in The Secret Doctrine that he had made a great mistake in representing Mars, Mercury, and the Earth as belonging to the same planetary chain, he continues on the same page —: . . . . "The letter from the Master from which she (H.P.B.) professed to give extract was not what she represents it, an answer to enquiries of her own, but a garbled version of a letter originally addressed to me."

Two different letters are in reality here referred to — the first, addressed to Mr. Sinnett, was quoted from on

p. 163, Vol. I of The Secret Doctrine; the second, addressed to Mdme. Blavatsky is quoted on p. 165; the former is contained in the present volume, but the latter is not.

On page 94 of the same work appears the following: — "Eventually when Mrs. Besant by the expansion of her own knowledge had ascertained definitely that Mars and Mercury did belong to our chain with functions in evolution as I had originally described them, she did publish a statement to that effect in 'Lucifer' vol.

XVII. p. 271."

For the convenience of those not having access to the volumes of Lucifer the passage referred to is here quoted in full together with a former statement by Mrs. Besant on the same subject: —

Extract from Lucifer for November, 1893, Vol. XIII., p. 203.

Mars and the Earth.

"The apparent contradiction between the teaching of The Masters as put forward by their direct messenger H.

P. Blavatsky, and as understood by Mr. Sinnett is capable of very easy explanation. The solution turns on the words 'Solar System.' If that term be held to denote the Solar System known to Western Science, the sentence given by Mr. Sinnett is meaningless; but reference to the series of letters from which the isolated passage respecting Mars is quoted, at once shows the meaning attached to the 'Solar System' in the correspondence. I naturally turned to the letters themselves — copies of which I have — to solve the puzzle, and I found that Master K.H. used the term in a special and quite definite sense.

"He explains three kinds of Manvantaras, Pralayas etc., universal, solar, and minor. A minor Manvantara is composed of seven Rounds i.e. the circuit seven times of a Planetary Chain of

seven Globes. To such a chain, our Earth belongs. A Solar Period consists of seven of such sevenfold Rounds

i.e. forty-nine; seven such Planetary Chains compose a 'Solar System'; in three of such chains, our Earth, Mars, and Mercury, form the D. Globe. Globe D. of the Mars Chain, Globe D. of the Mercury Chain are visible to us, because those chains are sufficiently near our own in evolution, one behind us and one ahead of us, for their matter to affect our senses, while the remaining four chains are too far away in evolution to have enough in common with us for visibility.

"Mars and Mercury bear a special relation to our Earth in the whole evolution of the Solar System, though not part of the Earth Chain. The other four Planetary Chains belonging to our Solar System are too far behind us or in front of us for even their Globes D. to be seen.

"Other planets in the Solar System of Science as arranged in the West do not belong to the Solar System of the Esoteric Philosophy; and it is the ignoring of this which led to the confusion. A western reader naturally gives the term his own sense not knowing that in the teachings it was used in quite a different one. And so, once more we find the Masters' doctrines self-consistent.


"The old Mars and Mercury discussion has been lately revived to some extent in Theosophical circles, and an appeal has been made to me to say if any further light has been thrown upon the subject. In Lucifer vol. XIII.

p. 206, I wrote an explanation which seemed satisfactory so far as the documents then in my hands were concerned. I was leaving for India when I wrote the paragraph and Mr. Sinnett kept silence, in his generous way, during my absence; but on my return he showed me the original letter on which the statement in Esoteric Buddhism was founded, the letter partially quoted in the Secret Doctrine vol. I p. 187; this letter was one of those received in the early days and was not among those of which I had copies. This original letter left no doubt as to the Master's statement on this point, for it said categorically, that Mars and Mercury made part of the chain of which our Earth is the fourth Globe. As the Society was then disturbed over Mr. Judge's affair, Mr. Sinnett did not wish the question to be revived merely to justify himself, but there is no reason now why the matter should not be put straight.

"The facts are these; the planetary chain consists of Globes A., B., Mars, Earth, Mercury, F., and G., and round these the great life-wave has swept three and a half times, reaching Earth for the fourth time; the mass of humanity passed from Mars to the Earth, and will pass from the Earth to Mercury. But the leading class of humanity — and here is a fact that throws some light on the opposing statements — did not share in this general evolution. It came directly to the Earth from another region at a much later period in evolution, and had never been on Mars at all. Another fact, which H.P.B. evidently had in mind, when writing on this question, is that Mars is also concerned in an entirely different evolution, as to which nothing can be publicly said. It is therefore impossible to clear the matter up to the satisfaction of exoteric students, but it is just that it should be publicly stated that Mr. Sinnett's statement is entirely borne out by the original letter."

It will be at once seen that in the first of the above statements Lucifer Vol. XIII, Mrs. Besant in the main supports the explanation given in the Secret Doctrine, while in the second, Vol. XVII she says, "that the letter partially quoted on page 163 of Secret Doctrine Vol. I., categorically states that Mars and Mercury made part of the chain of which our Earth is the fourth Globe."

The letter referred to was among those left by Mr. Sinnett and it is therefore possible to examine the facts in the light of the original document. The passage quoted will be found on page 176 of this volume in the paragraph numbered (23), and with due deference to Mrs. Besant, it must be pointed out that there is nothing in that paragraph or the remainder of the letter, which can be construed into a "categorical statement that Mars and Mercury made part of the chain of which our Earth is 4th Globe."

Attention has been drawn to the fact that Mdme. Blavatsky was not accurate in her quotation of the Master's letter to the extent that she added the word "etc." and omitted the word "yet" — and there are some who would like to convince themselves and others that this fact is sufficient to invalidate the whole of H.P.B.'s exposition of the teaching regarding the nature of the septenary planetary chains. It should be evident to every student that in reality, at the worst, this mis-quotation invalidates the hypothesis which Mdme. Blavatsky offered as a possible explanation of Mr. Sinnett's misunderstanding, and it leaves utterly untouched the doctrine of the septenary chain with one physical globe which is implied in every line of The Secret Doctrine and is in fact an integral part of the esoteric philosophy.

As stated over and over again and from every point of view in these pages of the Secret Doctrine (Vol. I., pp. 162-169) . . . "neither Mars nor Mercury belong to our chain. They are along with other planets, Septenary Units in the Great host of Chains of our System and all are as visible as their upper Globes are invisible." (p. 164.) And again "The one Eternal Law unfolds everything in the to be manifested Nature, on a sevenfold principle; among the rest, the countless circular chains of worlds composed of 7 globes, graduated on the 4 lower planes of the World of Formation, the 3 others belonging to the Archetypal Universe. Out of these 7 only one, the lowest and the most material of these Globes, is within our plane or means of perception, the 6 others lying outside it and being therefore invisible to the terrestrial eye. . . . To make it clearer; we are told that each of the planets, of which seven only were called sacred, as being ruled by the highest Regents or Gods, . . . is a septenary, as also is the chain to which the Earth belongs; . . . while the superior fellow globes

of these planets are on other planes quite outside that of our terrestrial senses. . . . These invisible companions correspond curiously to that which we call the "principles" in man. The seven are on three material planes and one spiritual plane" (Vol I., p. 152). . . and again . . . "but it may be stated that our satellite is only the gross body of its invisible principles. Seeing then that there are seven Earths, so there are seven Moons, the last alone being visible. The same for the Sun, whose visible body is called a Maya a reflection, just as man's body is. The real Sun and the real Moon are as invisible as the real man." (Vol I., p. 179) Says an occult axiom.

Could words be plainer? Hardly — and yet for over thirty years the Theosophical Society has permitted itself to spread this misleading superstition, preferring to assume that it was Madame Blavatsky who did not understand what she was writing about. The mystery is after all as clear as it well nigh can be. The septenary chains of Globes about which Theosophical Text Books talk so much, are seven principled Units, each having a physical body and six higher or subtler principles invisible to the ordinary senses, but co-existing and inter­penetrating each other.

Students of Astrology at least are able to prove for themselves that the correspondence between man and a planet is exact; for just as the six invisible principles of a planet correspond to the six invisible principles in man, so do the seven sacred Planets correspond to the whole of the seven principles of our Earth and therefore of man. How then is it possible that the theory, which credits the Earth Chain with three physical planets, can be correct from any point of view? It is manifestly ridiculous, because if it were true, it would mean by the occult law of correspondence, that man also must have three physical bodies which is an absurdity, and proves the whole theory false from beginning to end.

The publication of these letters gives to the student an opportunity to examine the whole range of Theosophic teaching in their light — while adding thereto the faculty of criticism — the highest and most discriminative of which he is capable. That faculty is an impersonal one; it is neither critic nor respecter of persons — for to it persons are without significance. But with ideas — with doctrines, it has everything to do, and if it is inevitable that the use of that faculty by students the world over will reveal many discrepancies in the accepted Theosophical doctrines of the day, it is equally certain that a large part of that teaching will receive a confirmation which cannot be gainsaid.

— A. T. B.

Table of Contents


The following article by A. Trevor Barker originally appeared in the January 1938 issue of The English Theosophical Forum, London, England. It is included herein because of its intrinsic value to students of The Mahatma Letters.


By A.Trevor Barker

I have received a number of requests to publish a reply to two questions that are asked by students over and over again, and these questions may be formulated as follows:

In your Introduction to The Mahatma Letters you refer to the letters as having been signed by the Masters with their own hands. You may or may not have intended this to be taken literally, but a careful study of the letters in the opinion of many intelligent people reveals that some of the letters seem to drop below the standard that one would attribute to a supramundane or Mahatmic intelligence. What is the explanation for this if the Mahatmas M. and K.H. were actually responsible for them?

The only satisfactory way of answering these very important questions is to see what H.P.B. and the Masters themselves had to say upon the subject. As a matter of fact the Mahatmas M. and K.H. did not use their high intelligence to supervise the whole process of transmitting quite a number of these letters. This H.P.B. states quite clearly on page 480 of The Mahatma Letters in these words:

Has Master K.H. written himself all His letters? How many chelas have been precipitating and

writing them — heaven only knows.

The Master himself writes on page 232:

In noticing M's opinion of yourself expressed in some of his letters — (you must not feel altogether so sure that because they are in his handwriting, they are written by him, though of course every word is sanctioned by him to serve certain ends) . . .

To understand the problem properly the whole of Letter 140 should be read carefully and in addition parts of Letters 138 and 92. In order to save space we only print the more important passages, and draw the reader's attention particularly to the following in Letter 92:

The letter in question was framed by me while on a journey and on horse-back. It was dictated mentally, in the direction of, and "precipitated" by, a young chela not yet expert at this branch of Psychic chemistry, and who had to transcribe it from the hardly visible imprint. Half of it, therefore, was omitted and the other half more or less distorted by the "artist." When asked by him at the time, whether I would look it over and correct I answered, imprudently, I confess — "anyhow will do, my boy — it is of no great importance if you skip a few words." I was physically very tired by a ride of 48 hours consecutively, and (physically again) — half asleep. Besides this I had very important business to attend to psychically and therefore little remained of me to devote to that letter. It was doomed, I suppose. When I woke I found it had already been sent on, and, as I was not then anticipating its publication, I never gave it from that time a thought.


Two factors are needed to produce a perfect and instantaneous mental telegraphy — close concentration in the operator, and complete receptive passivity in the "reader" — subject. Given a disturbance of either condition, and the result is proportionately imperfect. The "reader" does not see the image as in the "telegrapher's" brain, but as arising in his own. When the latter's thought

wanders, the psychic current becomes broken, the communication disjointed and incoherent. In a case such as mine, the chela had, as it were, to pick up what he could from the current I was sending him and, as above remarked, patch the broken bits together as best he might.

Well, as soon as I heard of the charge — the commotion among my defenders having reached me across the eternal snows — I ordered an investigation into the original scraps of the impression. At the first glance I saw that it was I, the only and most guilty party, — the poor little boy having done but that which he was told.

and later on the same page:

I transcribe them with my own hand this once, whereas the letter in your possession was written by the chela. I ask you also to compare this hand-writing with that of some of the earlier letters you received from me. Bear in mind, also the "O.L.'s" emphatic denial at Simla that my first letter had ever been written by myself. I felt annoyed at her gossip and remarks then; it may serve a good purpose now.

These passages from The Mahatma Letters prove and confirm H.P.B.'s statement in the letter quoted above from Letter 140.

In a letter to me on this subject Dr. de Purucker expressed himself as follows:

 stated specifically, and more than once, that it was the rarest thing in the world for any one of the Mahatmans, or even for a high chela, personally to write a letter, i.e. indite any communication with his own hand. There are very, very few, very rare exceptions, such as one or two, it may be three, cases of direct precipitation from the Master or from a high chela, and possibly one or two brief notes, maybe a telegram or two, written by the Master's own hand.

 states positively that not only was such writing in the Master's own hand the rarest thing, but that practically in every case, with the few exceptions named, the Master impressed mentally his chela or amanuensis, or chelas or amanuenses, to write thus or so, to such or another person. Then the chela, if the receptivity was good, would get the message clearly from the Master's mind along the etheric currents, and in writing it down, if the receptivity was perfect the resulting production would be practically the Master's own words, and actually his own handwriting, real or adopted — whichever Master it might be who was the source, K.H. or M. or some other. If receptivity on the part of the chela or amanuenses was less perfect, there would be the immediate entrance into the psychology of the receiving chela of more or less, usually less, of the chela's own mental idiosyncrasies, ways of phrasing, what Hodgson and the Hare brothers call Americanisms or Gallicisms, etc., etc.


The writing of these letters was a mystery and must remain so for all but the initiates. The last passage we quote however could hardly be more definite.

Another of our customs, when corresponding with the outside world, is to entrust a chela with the task of delivering the letter or any other message; and if not absolutely necessary — to never give it a thought. Very often our very letters — unless something very important and secret — are written in our handwritings by our chelas. Thus, last year, some of my letters to you were precipitated, and when sweet and easy precipitation was stopped — well I had but to compose my mind, assume an easy position, and — think, and my faithful "Disinherited" had but to copy my thoughts, making only occasioally a blunder. — p. 296

In conclusion if it is contended that it would have been better if I had not stated in the Introduction that the letters were written by the Masters in their own hands, I agree. When I wrote that sentence I had not had time to assimilate fully the whole content of the letters, and therefore this particular aspect of the matter had not clearly taken shape in my consciousness. One of these days, when a new issue is being printed, it can be corrected.

The above explanation should be sufficient to clear up this problem, for any serious student who will take the

Table of Contents


The original of this letter is not extant, although the major portion of it did appear in The Occult World. Why it was omitted in The Mahatma Letters to A. P. Sinnett is not known. We can only suppose that the copy that Patience Sinnett had made of it was not to hand when Trevor Barker was transcribing the Mahatma letters, otherwise he undoubtedly would have included it in his published volume. It follows K. H.'s letter of October 29 (1880) to Mr. Sinnett (ML 4).

We reproduce the letter in its entirety, checked against Mrs. Sinnett's handwritten copy in the British Museum (Mahatma Papers, Vol. VII, Additional MS. 45289 B). The copy is liberally blue pencilled, indicating A.P.S.'s editing prior to publication, and in three places several sentences deleted — appropriately so at the time. As stated, the text used here is verbatim with Patience Sinnett's copy.

It is of note that despite later difficulties which ended in the final breach between Mr. Hume and the Brothers, his "first letter was so sincere, its spirit so promising, the possibilities it opened for doing general good seemed so great, that . . . I carried it to our venerable Chief" (K. H. to A.O.H., ML 28). — G.F.K.

Amritsur Nov. 1st [1880]

Dear Sir,

Availing of the first moments of leisure to formally answer your letter of the 17th ultimo, I will now report the result of my conference with our chiefs upon the proposition therein contained; trying at the same time to answer all your questions.

I am first to thank you on behalf of the whole section of our fraternity that is especially interested in the welfare of India for an offer of help whose importance and sincerity no one can doubt. Tracing our lineage through the vicissitudes of Indian civilization to a remote past, we have a love for our motherland so deep and passionate, that it has survived even the broadening and cosmopolitanizing (pardon me if this is not an English word) effect of our studies in the hidden laws of nature. And so I and every other Indian patriot feel the strongest gratitude for every kind word or deed that is given in her behalf.

Imagine then, that since we are convinced that the degradation of India is largely due to the suffocation of her ancient spirituality; and that, whatever helps restore that higher standard of thought and morals must be a regenerating national force; every one of us would naturally and without urging be disposed to push forward a Society whose proposed formation is under debate; especially if it really is meant to become a society untainted by selfish motive, and whose object is the revival of ancient science and tendency to rehabilitate our country in the world's estimation. Take this for granted, without further asseverations. But you know, as any man who has read history, that patriots may burst their hearts in vain if circumstances are against them. Sometimes, it has happened that no human power, not even the fury and force of the loftiest patriotism, has been able to bend an iron destiny aside from its fixed course, and nations have gone out like torches dropped into water in the engulfing blackness of ruin. Thus, we who have the sense of our country's fall though not the power to lift her up at once, can not do as we would either as to general affairs or this particular one. And with the readiness but not the right to meet your advances more than half way we are forced to say that the idea entertained by Mr. Sinnett and yourself is impracticable in part. It is in a word impossible for myself or any Brother or even an advanced neophyte, to be specially assigned and set apart as the guiding Spirit or Chief of the Anglo-Indian Branch. We know it would be a good thing to have you and a few of your selected colleagues regularly instructed and shown the phenomena and their rationale. For though none but you few would be convinced, still it would be a decided gain to have even a few Englishmen of first-class ability enlisted as students of Asiatic Psychology. We are aware of all this and much more; hence we do not refuse to correspond with and otherwise help you in various ways. But what we do refuse is to take any other responsibility upon ourselves than this periodical correspondence and assistance with our advice; and, as occasion favours, such tangible, possibly visible proofs as would satisfy you of our presence and interest. To "guide" you we will not consent. However much we may be able to do, yet we can promise only to give you the full measure of your deserts. Deserve much and we will prove honest debtors; little and you need only expect a compensating return. This is not a mere text taken from a school boy's copybook, though it sounds so, but only the clumsy statement of the law of our order; and we can not transcend it. Utterly unacquainted with Western, especially English modes of thought and action, were we to meddle in an organization of such a kind you would find all your fixed habits and traditions incessantly clashing, if not with the new aspirations themselves, at least with their modes of realisation as suggested by us. You could not get unanimous consent to go even the length you might yourself. I have asked Mr. Sinnett to draft a plan embodying your joint ideas for submission to our chiefs, this seeming the shortest way to a mutual agreement. Under our "guidance" your Branch could not live, you not being men to be guided at all in that sense. Hence the Society would be a premature birth and a failure, looking as incongruous as a Paris Daumont drawn by a team of Indian yaks or camels. You ask us to teach you true Science, the occult aspect of the known side of nature: and this you think can be as easily done as asked. You do not seem to realize the tremendous difficulties in the way of imparting even the rudiments of our Science to those who have been trained in the familiar methods of yours. You do not see that the more you have of the one the less capable you are of intuitively comprehending the other, for a man can only think in his worn grooves, and unless he has the courage to fill up these and make new ones for himself he must perforce travel on the old lines. Allow me a few instances.

In conformity with exact modern Science you would define but one cosmic energy, and see no difference between the energy expended by the traveller who pushes aside the bush that obstructs his path, and the scientific experimenter who expends an equal amount of energy in setting a pendulum in motion! We do. For we know there is a world of difference between the two. The one uselessly dissipates or scatters force, the other concentrates and stores it. And here please understand that I do not refer to the relative utility of the two as one might imagine; but only to the fact, that in the one case, there is but brute force flung out without any transmutation of that brute energy into the higher potential form of spiritual dynamics, and, in the other there is just that. Please do not consider me vaguely metaphysical. The idea I wish to convey is, that the result of the highest intellection in the scientifically occupied brain is the evolution of a sublimated form of spiritual energy, which, in the cosmic action, is productive of illimitable results, while the automatically acting brain holds or stores up in itself only a certain quantum of brute force that is unfruitful of benefit for the individual or humanity. The human brain is an exhaustless generator of the most refined quality of cosmic force, out of the low, brute energy of nature; and the complete adept has made himself a centre from which irradiate potentialities that beget correlations upon correlations through Aeons to come. This is the key to the mystery of his being able to project into and materialise in the visible world the forms that his imagination has constructed out of inert cosmic matter in the invisible world. The adept does not create anything new, but only utilises and manipulates materials which nature has in store around him; a material which throughout eternities has passed through all the forms; he has but to choose the one he wants and recall it into objective existence. Would not this sound to one of your "learned" biologists like a madman's dream?

You say there are few branches of science with which you do not possess more or less acquaintance, and that you believe you are doing a certain amount of good, having acquired the position to do this by long years of study. Doubtless you do. But will you permit me to sketch for you still more clearly the difference between the modes of — physical called exact — often out of mere politeness — and metaphysical sciences? The latter, as you know, being incapable of verification before mixed audiences, is classed by Mr. Tyndall with the fictions of poetry. The realistic science of fact, on the other hand, is utterly prosaic. Now for us poor and unknown philanthropists, no fact of either of these sciences is interesting except in the degree of its potentiality of moral results, and in the ratio of its usefulness to mankind. And what, in its proud isolation, can be more utterly indifferent to every one and everything, or more bound to nothing, but the selfish requisites for its advancement than this materialistic and realistic science of fact? May I not ask then without being taxed with a vain "display of science" what have the laws of Faraday, Tyndall, or others to do with philanthropy in their abstract relations with humanity viewed as an integral whole? What care they for MAN as an isolated atom of this great and harmonious Whole, even though they may sometimes be of practical use to him? Cosmic energy is something eternal and incessant, matter is indestructible, and there stand the scientific facts. Doubt them and you are an ignoramus; deny them, a dangerous lunatic, a bigot; pretend to improve upon the theories — an impertinent charlatan. And yet even these scientific facts never suggested any proof to the world of experimenters, that nature consciously prefers that matter should be indestructible under organic rather than under inorganic forms; and that she works slowly but incessantly towards the realisation of this object — the evolution of conscious life out of inert material. Hence their ignorance about the scattering and concretion of cosmic energy in its metaphysical aspects; their division about Darwin's theories; their uncertainty about the degree of conscious life in separate elements; and, as a necessity, the scornful rejection of every phenomenon outside their own stated conditions and the very idea of worlds of semi-intelligent if not intellectual forces at work in hidden corners of nature. To give you another practical illustration. We see a vast difference between the qualities of two equal amounts of energy expended by two men, of whom one, let us suppose, is on his way to his daily quiet work, and another on his way to denounce a fellow creature at the police station, while the men of science see none. And we — not they — see a specific difference between the energy in the motion of the wind and that of a revolving wheel. And why? Because every thought of man upon being evolved passes into the inner world and becomes an active entity by associating itself — coalescing, we might term it — with an elemental; that is to say with one of the semi-intelligent forces of the kingdoms. It survives as an active intelligence, a creature of the mind's begetting, for a longer or shorter period proportionate with the original intensity of the cerebral action which generated it. Thus, a good thought is perpetuated as an active beneficent power; an evil one as a maleficent demon. And so man is continually peopling his current in space with a world of his own, crowded with the offsprings of his fancies, desires, impulses, and passions, a current which reacts upon any sensitive or and nervous organisation which comes in contact with it in proportion to its dynamic intensity. The Buddhist calls this his "Skandha," the Hindu gives it the name of "Karma"; the Adept evolves these shapes consciously, other men throw them off unconsciously.

The adept to be successful and preserve his power must dwell in solitude and more or less within his own soul. Still less does exact science perceive that while the building ant, the busy bee, the nidifacient bird accumulate, each in their own humble way as much cosmic energy in its potential form as a Haydn, a Plato, or a ploughman turning his furrow, in theirs; the hunter who kills game for his pleasure or profit, or the positivist who applies his intellect to proving that + x + = -, are wasting and scattering energy no less than the tiger which springs upon its prey. They all rob nature instead of enriching her, and will all in the degree of their intelligence find themselves accountable.

Exact experimental Science has nothing to do with morality, virtue, philanthropy, therefore can make no claim upon our help, until it blends itself with the metaphysics. Being but a cold classification of facts outside man, and existing before and after him, her domain of usefulness ceases for us at the outer boundary of these facts; and whatever the inferences and results for humanity from the materials acquired by her methods, she little cares. Therefore as our sphere lies entirely outside hers — as far as the path of Uranus is outside the earth's — we distinctly refuse to be broken on any wheel of her construction. Heat is but a mode of motion to her, and motion developes heat; but why the mechanical motion of the revolving wheel should be metaphysically of a higher value than the heat into which it is gradually transformed — she has yet to discover. The philosophical but transcendental (hence absurd?) notion of the mediaeval theosophists that the final progress of human labour aided by the incessant discoveries of man, must one day culminate in a process, which in imitation of the sun's energy — in its capacity of a direct motor — shall result in the evolution of nutritious food out of inorganic matter — is unthinkable for men of science. Were the sun, the great nourishing father of our planetary System, to hatch granite chickens out of a boulder "under test conditions" tomorrow, they (the men of Science) would accept it as a scientific fact, without wasting a regret that the fowls were not alive so as to feed the hungry and the starving. But let a Shaberon cross the Himalayas in a time of famine, and multiply sacks of rice for the perishing multitudes — as he could — and your magistrates and collectors would probably lodge him in jail, to make him confess what granary he had robbed. This is exact science and your realistic world. And though as you say you are impressed by the vast extent of the world's ignorance on every subject, which you pertinently designate as "a few palpable facts collected and roughly generalized and a technical jargon invented to hide man's ignorance of all that lies behind these facts"; and though you speak of your faith in the infinite possibilities of nature — yet you are content to spend your life in a work which aids only that same exact science. You cause a waste of cosmic energy by tons, to accumulate hardly a few ounces in your volumes — to speak figuratively. And despite your intuitive perceptions of the boundless reaches of nature, you take up the position that unless a proficient in arcane knowledge will waste upon your embryonic Society an energy which without moving from his place he can usefully distribute among millions, you, with your great natural powers will refuse to give a helping hand to humanity by beginning the work single handed, and trusting to time and the great Law to reward your labour. (1)

Of your several questions we will first discuss, if you please, the one relating to the presumed failure of the "Fraternity" to "leave any mark upon the history of the world." They ought, you think, to have been able with their extraordinary advantages to have "gathered into their schools a considerable portion of the more enlightened minds of every race." How do you know they have made no such mark? Are you acquainted with their efforts, successes, and failures? Have you any dock upon which to arraign them? How could your world collect proofs of the doings of men who have sedulously kept closed every possible door of approach by which the inquisitive could spy upon them. The prime condition of their success was, that they should never be supervised or obstructed. What they have done they know; all those outside their circle could perceive was results, the causes of which were masked from view. To account for these results, men have in different ages invented theories of the interposition of "Gods," Special providences, fates, and the benign or hostile influences of the stars. There never was a time within or before the so-called historical period when our predecessors were not moulding events and "making history," the facts of which were subsequently and invariably distorted by "historians" to suit contemporary prejudices. Are you quite sure that the visible heroic figures in the successive dramas were not often but their puppets? We never pretended to be able to draw nations in the mass to this or that crisis in spite of the general drift of the world's cosmic relations. The cycles must run their rounds. Periods of mental and moral light and darkness succeed each other, as day does night. The major and minor yugas must be accomplished according to the established order of things. And we, borne along on the mighty tide, can only modify and direct some of its minor currents. If we had the powers of the imaginary Personal God, and the universal and immutable laws were but toys to play with, then indeed might we have created conditions that would have turned this earth into an Arcadia for lofty souls. But having to deal with an immutable Law, being ourselves its creatures, we have had to do what we could and rest thankful. There have been times when "a considerable portion of enlightened minds" were taught in our schools. Such times there were in India, Persia, Egypt, Greece and Rome. But, as I remarked in a letter to Mr. Sinnett, the adept is the efflorescence of his age, and comparatively few ever appear in a single century. Earth is the battle ground of moral no less than of physical forces; and the boisterousness of animal passions under the stimulus of the rude energies of the lower group of etheric agents, always tends to quench spirituality.

What else could one expect of men so nearly related to the lower kingdom from which they evolved? True also, our numbers are just now diminishing but this is because, as I have said, we are of the human race, subject to its cyclic impulse and powerless to turn that back upon itself. Can you turn the Gunga or the Brahmaputra, back to its sources; can you even dam it so that its piled up waters will not overflow the banks? No, but you may draw the stream partly into canals and utilize its hydraulic power for the good of mankind. So we, who can not stop the world from going in its destined direction, are yet able to divert some part of its energy into useful channels. Think of us as demi-gods and my explanation will not satisfy you; view us as simple men — perhaps a little wiser as the result of special study — and it ought to answer your objection.

"What good," say you, "is to be attained for my fellows and myself (the two are inseparable) by these occult sciences?" When the natives see that an interest is taken by the English and even by some high officials in India in their ancestral science and philosophies, they will themselves take openly to their study. And when they come to realise that the old "divine" phenomena were not miracles, but scientific effects, superstition will abate. Thus the greatest evil that now oppresses and retards the revival of Indian civilisation will in time disappear. The present tendency of education is to make them materialistic and root out spirituality. With a proper understanding of what their ancestors meant by their writings and teachings, education would become a blessing whereas now it is often a curse. At present the non-educated as much as the learned natives regard the English as too prejudiced, because of their Christian religion and modern science, to care to understand them or their traditions. They mutually hate and mistrust each other. This changed attitude toward the older philosophy would influence the native Princes and wealthy men to endow normal schools for the education of pundits; and old MSS. hitherto buried out of the reach of the Europeans would again come to light, and with them the key to much of that which was hidden for ages from the popular understanding; for which your skeptical Sanscritists do not care, which your religious missionaries do not dare, to understand. Science would gain much — humanity every thing. Under the stimulus of the Anglo Indian Theosophical Society, we might in time see another golden age of Sanscrit literature. Such a movement would have the entire approbation of the Home Government as it would act as a preventive against discontent; and the sympathy of European Sanscritists who, in their divisions of opinion need the help of native pundits, now beyond their

reach in the present state of mutual misunderstanding. They are even now bidding for such help. At this moment two educated Hindus of Bombay are assisting Max Muller; and a young Pundit of Guzerat a Fellow of the T.S. is aiding Prof. Monier Williams at Oxford and living in his house. The first two are materialists and do harm; the latter single handed can do little, because the man whom he is serving is a prejudiced Christian. (2)

If we look to Ceylon we shall see the most scholarly priests combining under the lead of the Theos. Society in a new exegesis of Buddhistic philosophy and — at Galle on the 15th of September, a secular Theosophical school for the teaching of Singhalese youth opened, with an attendance of over 300 scholars: an example about to be imitated at three other points in that island. If the T.S. "as at present constituted," has indeed no "real vitality" and yet in its modest way has done so much of practical good, how much greater results might not be anticipated from a body organized upon the better plan you could suggest!

The same causes that are materialising the Hindu mind are equally affecting all Western thought. Education enthrones skepticism but imprisons spiritualism. You can do immense good by helping to give the Western nations a secure basis upon which to reconstruct their crumbling faith. What they need is the evidence that Asiatic psychology alone supplies. Give this and you will confer happiness of mind on thousands. The era of blind faith is gone; that of enquiry is here. Enquiry that only unmasks error, without discovering anything upon which the soul can build, will but make iconoclasts. Iconoclasm from its very destructiveness can give nothing, it can only raze. But man can not rest satisfied with bare negation. Agnosticism is but a temporary halt.

This is the moment to guide the recurrent impulse which must soon come, and which will push the age toward extreme atheism, or drag it back to extreme sacerdotalism, if it is not led to the primitive and soul-satisfying philosophy of the Aryans. He who observes what is going on today, on the one hand among the Catholics, who are breeding miracles as fast as the white ants do their young, on the other, among the free thinkers, who are converting by masses into agnostics — will see the drift of things. The age is revelling at a debauch of phenomena. The same marvels that the spiritualists quote in opposition to the dogmas of eternal perdition and atonement, the catholics swarm to witness as the strongest proof of their faith in miracles. The skeptics make game of both. All are blind and there is no one to lead them! You and your colleagues may help furnish the materials for a needed universal religious philosophy; one impregnable to scientific assault because itself the finality of absolute science; and, a religion, that is indeed worthy of the name, since it includes the relations of man physical to man psychical, and of the two to all that is above and below them. Is not this worth a slight sacrifice? And if after reflection you should decide to enter this new career, let it be known that your Society is no miracle-mongering or banqueting club, nor specially given to the study of phenomenalism. Its chief aim is to extirpate current superstitions and skepticism, and, from long sealed ancient fountains to draw the proof that man may shape his own future destiny, and know for a certainty that he can live hereafter, if he only wills; and that all "phenomena" are but manifestations of natural law, to try to comprehend which is the duty of every intelligent being. (3) You have personally devoted many years to a labour benevolently conceived and conscientiously carried out. Give to your fellow creatures half the attention you have bestowed on your 'little birds," and you will round off a useful life with a grand and noble work.

Sincerely your friend

Table of Contents


 The last several lines of this paragraph [from "You cause a waste . . ."] were omitted in The Occult World. (return to text)

 The last several lines of this paragraph [from "Such a movement would have . . ."] were omitted in The Occult World. (return to text)

 In The Occult World, the letter ends here. (return to text)



View of the Chohan on the T.S. (1)


Several good reasons given to K. H. by the Chohan why the T. S. should be a Brotherhood of Humanity.


for the Simla Eclectic T. S. {1880 or 1881}

The doctrine we promulgate being the only true one, must, — supported by such evidence as we are preparing to give become ultimately triumphant as every other truth. Yet it is absolutely necessary to inculcate it gradually enforcing its theories, unimpeachable facts for those who know, with direct inferences deducted from and corroborated by the evidence furnished by modern exact science. That is why Col H.S.O. who works but to revive Buddhism may be regarded as one who labours in the true path of Theosophy, far more than any other man who chooses as his goal the gratification of his own ardent aspirations for occult knowledge. Buddhism stripped of its superstitions is eternal truth, and he who strives for the latter is striving for Theos-sophia, Divine Wisdom, which is a synonym of truth.

For our doctrines to practically react on the so called moral code or the ideas of truthfulness, purity, self-denial, charity, etc., we have to preach and popularise a knowledge of theosophy. It is not the individual and determined purpose of attaining oneself Nirvana (the culmination of all knowledge and absolute wisdom) which is, after all only an exalted and glorious selfishness, but the self-sacrificing pursuit of the best means to lead on the right path our neighbour, to cause as many of our fellow creatures as we possibly can to benefit by it, which constitutes the true Theosophist.

The intellectual portions of mankind seem to be fast dividing into two classes, the one unconsciously preparing for itself long periods of temporary annihilation or states of non-consciousness owing to the deliberate surrender of their intellect, its imprisonment in the narrow grooves of bigotry and superstition, a process which cannot fail to lead to the utter deformation of the intellectual principle; the other unrestrainedly indulging its animal propensities with the deliberate intention of submitting to annihilation pure and simple in cases of failure, to millenniums of degradation after physical dissolution. Those "intellectual classes," reacting upon the ignorant masses which they attract and which look up to them as noble and fit examples to follow, degrade and morally ruin those they ought to protect and guide. Between degrading superstition and still more degrading brutal materialism the white dove of truth has hardly room where to rest her weary unwelcome foot. . . .

It's time that Theosophy should enter the arena. The sons of Theosophists are more likely to become in their turn Theosophists than anything else. No messenger of truth, no prophet has ever achieved during his life time a complete triumph, not even Buddha; the Theosophical Society was chosen as the corner stone, the foundation of the future religion of humanity. To achieve the proposed object a greater, wiser, and especially a more benevolent intermingling of the high and the low, of the alpha and the omega of society, was determined upon. The white race must be the first to stretch out the hand of fellowship to the dark nations, to call the poor despised "nigger" brothers. This prospect may not smile to all. He is no Theosophist who objects to this principle. . . .

In view of the ever increasing triumph and at the same time misuse of free-thought and liberty (the Universal reign of Satan, Eliphas Levi would have called it), how is the combative natural instinct of man to be restrained from inflicting hitherto unheard of cruelties and enormities, tyranny, injustice, etc., if not through the soothing influence of a brotherhood and of the practical application of Buddha's esoteric doctrines. For as everyone knows, total emancipation from authority of the one all pervading power or law called God by the Theists — Buddha, Divine Wisdom and Enlightenment or Theosophy by the philosophers of all ages — means also the emancipation from that of human law. Once unfettered [and] delivered from their dead weight of dogmatic interpretations, personal names, anthropomorphic conceptions and salaried priests, the fundamental doctrines of all religions will be proved identical in their esoteric meaning. Osiris, Chrishna, Buddha, Christ, will be shown as different means for one and [the] same royal highway to final bliss Nirvana.

Mystical christianity, that is to say that christianity which teaches self redemption through one's own seventh principle — the liberated Para-atma (Augoeides) called by the one Christ, by others Buddha, and equivalent to regeneration or rebirth in spirit — will be found just the same truth as the Nirvana of mystical Buddhism. All of us have to get rid of our own Ego, the illusory apparent self, to recognise our true self in a transcendental divine life. But if we would not be selfish we must strive to make other people see that truth, to recognise the reality of that transcendental self, the Buddh, the Christ or God of every preacher. This is why even exoteric Buddhism is the surest path to lead men toward the one esoteric truth. As we find the world now, whether Christian, Mussalman or Pagan, justice is disregarded and honour and mercy both flung to the winds.

In a word, how, once that the main objects of the T. S. are misinterpreted by those who are most willing to serve us personally, are we to deal with the rest of mankind, with that curse known as the "struggle for life," which is the real and most prolific parent of most woes and sorrows and of all the crimes? Why has that struggle become the almost universal scheme of the universe? We answer, because no religion with the exception of Buddhism has hitherto taught a practical contempt for this earthly life, while each of them, always with that one solitary exception, has through its hells and damnations inculcated the greatest dread of death. Therefore do we find that struggle for life raging most fiercely in Christian countries, most prevalent in Europe and America. It weakens in the Pagan lands and is nearly unknown among Buddhist populations. (In China during famine and where the masses are most ignorant of their own or any religion, it was remarked that those mothers who devoured their children belonged to localities where there were the most of Christian missionaries to be found. Where there were none and the Bonzes alone had the field the population died with the utmost indifference.) Teach the people to see that life on this earth even the happiest is but a burden and an illusion, that it is but our own Karma, the cause producing the effect, that is our own judge, our Saviour in future lives, and the great struggle for life will soon lose its intensity. There are no penitentiaries in Buddhist lands and crime is nearly unknown among the Buddhist Tibetans. (The above is not addressed to you, and has nought to do with the work of the Simla Eclectic Society. It is meant only as an answer to the erroneous impression in Mr. Hume's mind of the "Ceylon work" as no theosophy.)

The world in general and Christendom especially, left for two thousand years to the regime of a personal God as well as its political and social systems based on that idea, has now proved a failure. If the Theosophists say, we have nothing to do with all this, the lower classes and the inferior races (those of India for instance in the conception of the British) cannot concern us and must manage as they can, what becomes of our fine professions of benevolence, philanthropy, reform, etc. Are these professions a mockery? And if a mockery, can ours be the true path. Shall we devote our selves to teaching a few Europeans fed on the fat of the land, many of them loaded with the gifts of blind fortune, the rationale of bell ringing, cup growing, of the spiritual telephone and astral body formation, and leave the teeming millions of the ignorant, of the poor and despised, the lowly and the oppressed, to take care of themselves and of their hereafter the best they know how. Never. Rather perish the Theosophical Society with both its hapless founders than that we should permit it to become no better than an academy of magic and a hall of occultism. That we, the devoted followers of that spirit incarnate of absolute self sacrifice, of philanthropy, divine kindness, as of all the highest virtues attainable on this earth of sorrow, the man of men, Gautama Buddha, should ever allow the Theosophical Society to represent the embodiment of selfishness, the refuge of the few with no thought in them for the many, is a strange idea, my brothers.

Among the few glimpses obtained by Europeans of Tibet and its mystical hierarchy of "perfect lamas," there is one which was correctly understood and described. "The incarnations of the Boddisatwa Padma Pani or Avalo-Kiteswara and of Tsong Kapa, that of Amitabha, relinquish at their death the attainment of Buddhahood — i.e. the summum bonum of bliss, and of individual personal felicity — that they might be born again and again for the benefit of mankind." (Rhys Davids) In other words, that they might be again and again subjected to misery, imprisonment in flesh and all the sorrows of life, provided that by such a self sacrifice repeated throughout long and dreary centuries they might become the means of securing salvation and bliss in the hereafter for a handful of men chosen among but one of the many races of mankind. And it is we, the humble disciples of these perfect lamas, who are expected to allow the T. S. to drop its noblest title, that of the Brotherhood of Humanity to become a simple school of psychology? No, no, good brothers, you have been labouring under the mistake too long already. Let us understand each other. He who does not feel competent enough to grasp the noble idea sufficiently to work for it, need not undertake a task too heavy for him. But there is hardly a theosophist in the whole society unable to effectually help it by correcting the erroneous impressions of the outsiders, if not by actually propagating himself the idea. Oh, for the noble and unselfish man to help us effectually in India in that divine task. All our knowledge past and present would not be sufficient to repay him. . . . Having explained our views and aspirations I have but a few words more to add.

To be true, religion and philosophy must offer the solution of every problem. That the world is in such a bad condition morally is a conclusive evidence that none of its religions and philosophies, those of the civilised races less than any other, have ever possessed the truth. The right and logical explanations on the subject of the problems of the great dual principles — right and wrong, good and evil, liberty and despotism, pain and pleasure, egotism and altruism — are as impossible to them now as they were 1881 years ago. They are as far from the solution as they ever were but, —

To these there must be somewhere a consistent solution, and if our doctrines will show their competence to offer it, then the world will be the first one to confess that must be the true philosophy, the true religion, the true light, which gives truth and nothing but the truth.

An abridged version of the view of the Chohan on the T. S. from his own words as given last night. My own letter, the answer to your last will shortly follow.

Table of Contents

1. Editorial Note: An aura of mystery has surrounded this letter, as the original has never been found. As early as the middle 80s of last century, it was circulated privately, in whole or in part, but not published openly until 1886 when John C. Bundy, F.T.S., editor of the Religio-Philosophical Journal and Weekly Occult News, Chicago, Illinois, inserted it in his June 26 issue (vol. xl, No. 18). It is also known as the "Letter from the Maha-chohan" or "The Great Master's Letter."

The text we are using follows what we believe to be the earliest copy of the letter, that made by A. P. Sinnett to whom it had been addressed, and included by him along with other Mahatma letters (such as No. 11 to Hume) in a notebook now preserved in the British Museum (Mahatma Papers, Vol. VI, Additional MS. 45289 A). Our title is taken from the subscription at the close; the dots of omission are Sinnett's.

The several versions of the letter disclose some variations in wording, also in the deletion (or retention) of certain phrases or sentences. The chief difference lies in the year given in the penultimate paragraph — 1880, 1881, or 1886. H. P. B. gives it as 1880, both in editorial comment and in the quoted portion from the letter (Lucifer, August 15, 1888); A.P.S. has 1881, as does the published version of C. Jinarajadasa in his first series of Letters from the Masters of the Wisdom (4th and subsequent editions), recopied, he says, from the two manuscripts before him: the one, a 'cyclostyled' handwritten copy found among C. W. Leadbeater's papers, and the other, discovered in the Archives of the T. S. at Adyar, Madras in 1945, a copy made by Francesca Arundale, treasurer of the London Lodge during H. P. B.'s lifetime. This later copy is substantially the same as the Sinnett copy with only minor differences, although a few of them are of interest. But we are not concerned with these here.

In the Archives of the T. S., Pasadena, California, are three versions of the letter: a 'cyclostyled' handwritten copy in William Q. Judge's possession, which also has 1881 — he effectively drew upon the letter in his article "What the Masters Have Said" (The Path, Feb. 1893); two copies in the Notebooks of General Abner Doubleday, who was appointed president pro tem. of the American work of the T. S., with W. Q. Judge secretary, on January 17, 1879, the day before H. P. B. and Olcott with their two British companions set sail from Liverpool for India. The earliest of these is a typed copy pasted in Notebook No. 7 between letters dated 1884 and 1885; its heading reads ". . . given to Mahatma K. H. . . . for the Simla Eclectic Society" and ends "K. H. (signed)." His other copy in Notebook K-26 bears quite a different heading: "A Chohan's counsel to the T. S. — Given through R. H. and sent for publication in the Religio-Phil. Journal by a member of the T.

Doubleday's handwritten copy also perpetuates the "R.H." The closing subscription in the Journal is of interest:

"[NOTE: The above is an abridged version of the views of the Chohan on the Theosophical

Society from his own words, as given last night through an accepted chela, and now published for the benefit of those whom it may concern. F.T.S]"

The phrase, through an accepted chela, is not found in any other copy. In both the Doubleday handwritten copy and that of the Journal, the year is given as 1886. This is surely a misreading of a carelessly written 0 — or 1? as is the R. H. a misreading of a handwritten K. H.

It is likewise possible that H. P. B., quoting from the letter some seven or eight years after its receipt, mistook a 1 for an 0. Yet there seems to be some justification in the letters of K. H. and M. for not immediately abandoning the 1880 date. On the other hand, the Anglo-Indian Branch was not called the "Simla Eclectic Society" much before October 1881.

The question remains: when did the Chohan impart his vision of the T. S. and its mission and role in the world? In 1880, when K. H. brought up with him Sinnett's and Hume's first letters? Or in 1881, around the time when the Anglo-Indian Branch actually came into being, on August 21? To read letter no. 4 and the first letter of K. H. to Hume of 1880, in conjunction with K. H.'s and M.'s letters (28 and 29) written in the fall of 1881, is to see, in their insistence on the formation of a Branch of Universal Brotherhood and not of a "school of magic," a clear reflection of the same powerful current of universalism that characterizes the Chohan's stated directives.

There is no need to labor the issue. The matter of the year is of small consequence compared to the awesome truth that even today earnest students everywhere honor the lines here traced by the master-hand as the inner charter of the theosophical movement. — G.F.K. (return to text)

Letter No. 1

Received Simla about October 15th, 1880.

Esteemed Brother and Friend,

Precisely because the test of the London newspaper would close the mouths of the skeptics — it is unthinkable. See it in what light you will — the world is yet in its first stage of disenthralment if not development, hence — unprepared. Very true, we work by natural not supernatural means and laws. But, as on the one hand Science would find itself unable (in its present state) to account for the wonders given in its name, and on the other the ignorant masses would still be left to view the phenomenon in the light of a miracle; everyone who would thus be made a witness to the occurrence would be thrown off his balance and the results would be deplorable. Believe me, it would be so — especially for yourself who originated the idea, and the devoted woman who so foolishly rushes into the wide open door leading to notoriety. This door, though opened by so friendly a hand as yours, would prove very soon a trap — and a fatal one indeed for her. And such is not surely your object?

Madmen are they, who, speculating but upon the present, wilfully shut their eyes to the past when made already to remain naturally blind to the future! Far be it from me, to number you with the latter — therefore will I endeavour to explain. Were we to accede to your desires know you really what consequences would follow in the trail of success? The inexorable shadow which follows all human innovations moves on, yet few are they, who are ever conscious of its approach and dangers. What are then to expect they, who would offer the world an innovation which, owing to human ignorance, if believed in, will surely be attributed to those dark agencies the two-thirds of humanity believe in and dread as yet? You say — half London would be converted if you could deliver them a Pioneer on its day of publication. I beg to say that if the people believed the thing true they would kill you before you could make the round of Hyde Park; if it were not believed true, — the least that could happen would be the loss of your reputation and good name, — for propagating such ideas.

The success of an attempt of such a kind as the one you propose, must be calculated and based upon a thorough knowledge of the people around you. It depends entirely upon the social and moral conditions of the people in their bearing on these deepest and most mysterious questions which can stir the human mind — the deific powers in man and the possibilities contained in nature. How many, even of your best friends, of those who surround you, who are more than superficially interested in these abstruse problems? You could count them upon the fingers of your right hand. Your race boasts of having liberated in their century, the genius so long imprisoned in the narrow vase of dogmatism and intolerance — the genius of knowledge, wisdom and freethought. It says that in their turn ignorant prejudice and religious bigotry, bottled up like the wicked Jin of old, and sealed by the Solomons of Science rests at the bottom of the sea and can never, escaping to the surface again, reign over the world as it did in days of old; that the public mind is quite free, in short, and ready to accept any demonstrated truth. Aye; but is it verily so, my respected friend? Experimental knowledge does not quite date from 1662, when Bacon, Robert Boyle and the Bishop of Chester transformed under the royal charter their "Invisible College" into a Society for the promotion of Experimental Science. Ages before the Royal Society found itself becoming a reality upon the plan of the "Prophetic Scheme" an innate longing for the hidden, a passionate love for and the study of nature had led men in every generation to try and fathom her secrets deeper than their neighbours did. Roma ante Romulum fuit — is an axiom taught to us in your English schools. Abstract enquiries into the most puzzling problems did not arise in the brain of Archimedes as a spontaneous and hitherto untouched subject, but rather as a reflection of prior enquiries in the same direction and by men separated from his days by as long a period — and far longer — than the one which separates you from the great Syracusian. The vril of the "Coming Race" was the common property of races now extinct. And, as the very existence of those gigantic ancestors of ours is now questioned — though in the Himavats, on the very territory belonging to you we have a cave full of the skeletons of these giants — and their huge frames when found are invariably regarded as isolated freaks of nature, so the vril or Akas — as we call it — is looked upon as an impossibility, a myth. And, without a thorough knowledge of Akas, its combinations and properties, how can Science hope to account for such phenomena? We doubt not but the men of your Science are open to conviction; yet facts must be first demonstrated to them, they must first have become their own property, have proved amenable to their own modes of investigation, before you find them ready to admit them as facts. If you but look into the Preface to the "Micrographia" you will find in Hooke's suggestions that the intimate relations of objects were of less account in his eyes than their external operation on the senses — and Newton's fine discoveries found in him their greatest opponent. The modern Hookeses are many. Like this learned but ignorant man of old your modern men of science are less anxious to suggest a physical connexion of facts which might unlock for them many an occult force in nature, as to provide a convenient "classification of scientific experiments"; so that the most essential quality of an hypothesis is not that it should be true but only plausible — in their opinion.

So far for Science — as much as we know of it. As for human nature in general, it is the same now as it was a million of years ago: Prejudice based upon selfishness; a general unwillingness to give up an established order of things for new modes of life and thought — and occult study requires all that and much more —; pride and stubborn resistance to Truth if it but upsets their previous notions of things, — such are the characteristics of your age, and especially of the middle and lower classes. What then would be the results of the most astounding phenomena, supposing we consented to have them produced? However successful, danger would be growing proportionately with success. No choice would soon remain but to go on, ever crescendo, or to fall in this endless struggle with prejudice and ignorance killed by your own weapons. Test after test would be required and would have to be furnished; every subsequent phenomenon expected to be more marvellous than the preceding one. Your daily remark is, that one cannot be expected to believe unless he becomes an eye-witness. Would the lifetime of a man suffice to satisfy the whole world of skeptics? It may be an easy matter to increase the original number of believers at Simla to hundreds and thousands. But what of the hundreds of millions of those who could not be made eye-witnesses? The ignorant — unable to grapple with the invisible operators — might some day vent their rage on the visible agents at work; the higher and educated classes would go on disbelieving as ever, tearing you to shreds as before. In common with many, you blame us for our great secrecy. Yet we know something of human nature for the experience of long centuries — aye, ages — has taught us. And, we know, that so long as Science has anything to learn, and a shadow of religious dogmatism lingers in the hearts of the multitudes, the world's prejudices have to be conquered step by step, not at a rush. As hoary antiquity had more than one Socrates so the dim Future will give birth to more than one martyr. Enfranchised Science contemptuously turned away her face from the Copernican opinion renewing the theories of Aristarchus Samius — who "affirmeth that the Earth moveth circularly about her own centre" years before the Church sought to sacrifice Galileo as a holocaust to the Bible. The ablest mathematician at the Court of Edward VI — Robert Recorde — was left to starve in jail by his colleagues, who laughed at his Castle of Knowledge, declaring his discoveries "vain phantasies." Wm. Gilbert of Colchester — Queen Elisabeth's physician — died poisoned, only because — this real founder of Experimental Science in England — has had the audacity of anticipating Galileo; of pointing out Copernican's fallacy as to the "third movement," which was gravely alleged to account for the parallelism of the Earth's axis of rotation! The enormous learning of the Paracelsi, of the Agrippas and the De[e]s was ever doubted. It was science which laid her sacrilegious hand upon the great work "De Magnete" — "The Heavenly White Virgin" (Akas) and others. And it was the illustrious "Chancellor of England and of Nature"


— Lord Verulam-Bacon — who having won the name of the Father of Inductive Philosophy, permitted himself to speak of such men as the above-named as the "Alchemicians of the Fantastic philosophy."


All this is old history, you will think. Verily so; but the chronicles of our modern days do not differ very essentially from their predecessors. And we have but to bear in mind the recent persecutions of mediums in England, the burning of supposed witches, and sorcerers in South America, Russia and the frontiers of Spain — to assure ourselves that the only salvation of the genuine proficients in occult sciences lies in the skepticism of the public: the charlatans and the jugglers are the natural shields of the "adepts." The public safety is only ensured by our keeping secret the terrible weapons which might otherwise be used against it, and which, as you have been told became deadly in the hands of the wicked and selfish.


I conclude by reminding you that such phenomena as you crave, have ever been reserved as a reward for those who have devoted their lives to serve the goddess Saraswati — our Aryan Isis. Were they given to the profanes what would remain for our faithful ones? Many of your suggestions are highly reasonable and will be attended to. I listened attentively to the conversation which took place at Mr. Hume's. His arguments are

perfect from the standpoint of exoteric wisdom. But, when the time comes and he is allowed to have a full glimpse into the world of esoterism, with its laws based upon mathematically correct calculations of the future — the necessary results of the causes which we are always at liberty to create and shape at our will but are as unable to control their consequences which thus become our masters — then only will, both you and he understand why to the uninitiated our acts must seem often unwise, if not actually foolish.

Your forthcoming letter I will not be able to fully answer without taking the advice of those who generally deal with the European mystics. Moreover the present letter must satisfy you on many points you have better defined in your last; but it will no doubt disappoint you as well. In regard to the production of newly devised and still more startling phenomena demanded of her with our help, as a man well acquainted with the strategy, you must remain satisfied with the reflection that there is little use in acquiring new positions until those that you have already reached are secured, and your Enemies full aware of your right to their possession. In other words, you had a greater variety of phenomena produced for yourself and friends than many a regular neophyte has seen in several years. First, notify the public of the production of the note, the cup and the sundry experiments with the cigarette papers, and let them digest these. Get them to work for an explanation. And as except upon the direct and absurd accusation of deceit they will never be able to account for some of these, while the skeptics are quite satisfied with their present hypothesis for the production of the brooch — you will then have done real good to the cause of truth and justice to the woman who is made to suffer for it. Isolated as it is, the case under notice in the Pioneer becomes less than worthless — it is positively injurious for all of you — for yourself as the Editor of that paper as much as for anyone else, if you pardon me for offering you that which looks like advice. It is neither fair to yourself nor to her, that, because the number of eye-witnesses does not seem sufficient to warrant the public attention, your and your lady's testimony should go for nothing. Several cases combining to fortify your position as truthful and intelligent witness to the various occurrences, each of these gives you an additional right to assert what you know. It imposes upon you the sacred duty to instruct the public and prepare them for future possibilities by gradually opening their eyes to the truth. The opportunity should not be lost through a lack of as great confidence in your own individual right of assertion as that of Sir Donald Stewart. One witness of well known character outweighs the evidence of ten strangers; and if, there is anyone in India who is respected for his trustworthiness it is — the Editor of the Pioneer. Remember that there was but one hysterical woman alleged to have been present at the pretended ascension, and that the phenomenon has never been corroborated by repetition. Yet for nearly 2,000 years countless milliards have pinned their faith upon the testimony of that one woman — and she not over trustworthy.

TRY — and first work upon the material you have and then we will be the first to help you to get further evidence. Until then, believe me, always your sincere friend,


Letter 2 Table of Contents

Letter No. 2

Received Simla, October 19th, 1880.

Much Esteemed Sir and Brother,

We will be at cross purposes in our correspondence until it has been made entirely plain that occult science has its own methods of research as fixed and arbitrary as the methods of its antithesis physical science are in their way. If the latter has its dicta so also has the former; and he who would cross the boundary of the unseen world can no more prescribe how he will proceed than the traveller who tries to penetrate to the inner subterranean recesses of L'Hassa — the blessed, could show the way to his guide. The mysteries never were, never can be, put within the reach of the general public, not, at least, until that longed for day when our religious philosophy becomes universal. At no time have more than a scarcely appreciable minority of men possessed nature's secret, though multitudes have witnessed the practical evidences of the possibility of their possession. The adept is the rare efflorescence of a generation of enquirers; and to become one, he must obey the inward impulse of his soul irrespective of the prudential considerations of worldly science or sagacity. Your desire is to be brought to communicate with one of us directly, without the agency of either Mad. B. or any medium. Your idea would be, as I understand it, to obtain such communications either by letters — as the present one — or by audible words so as to be guided by one of us in the management and principally in the instruction of the society. You seek all this, and yet, as you say yourself, hitherto you have not found "sufficient reasons" to even give up your "modes of life" — directly hostile to such modes of communications. This is hardly reasonable. He who would lift up high the banner of mysticism and proclaim its reign near at hand, must give the example to others. He must be the first to change his modes of life; and, regarding the study of the occult mysteries as the upper step in the ladder of Knowledge must loudly proclaim it such despite exact Science and the opposition of society. "The Kingdom of Heaven is obtained by force" say the Christian mystics. It is but with armed hand, and ready to either conquer or perish that the modern mystic can hope to achieve his object.

My first answer covered, I believed, most of the questions contained in your second and even third letter. Having then expressed therein my opinion that the world in general was unripe for any too staggering proof of occult power, there but remains to deal with the isolated individuals, who seek like yourself to penetrate behind the veil of matter into the world of primal causes, i.e., we need only consider now the cases of yourself and Mr. Hume. This gentleman also, has done me the great honour to address me by name, offering to me a few questions and stating the conditions upon which he would be willing to work for us seriously. But your motives and aspirations being of diametrically opposite character, and hence — leading to different results I must reply to each of you separately.

The first and chief consideration in determining us to accept or reject your offer lies in the inner motive which propels you to seek our instructions, and in a certain sense — our guidance. The latter in all cases under reserve — as I understand it, and therefore remaining a question independent of aught else. Now, what are your motives? I may try to define them in their general aspect, leaving details for further consideration. They are: (1) The desire to receive positive and unimpeachable proofs that there really are forces in nature of which science knows nothing; (2) The hope to appropriate them some day — the sooner the better, for you do not like to wait — so as to enable yourself — (a) to demonstrate their existence to a few chosen western minds;

(b) to contemplate future life as an objective reality built upon the rock of Knowledge — not of faith; and (c) to finally learn — most important this, among all your motives, perhaps, though the most occult and the best guarded — the whole truth about our Lodges and ourselves; to get, in short, the positive assurance that the "Brothers" — of whom everyone hears so much and sees so little — are real entities — not fictions of a disordered hallucinated brain. Such, viewed in their best light appear to us your "motives" for addressing me. And in the same spirit do I answer them, hoping that my sincerity will not be interpreted in a wrong way or attributed to anything like an unfriendly spirit.

To our minds then, these motives, sincere and worthy of every serious consideration from the worldly standpoint, appear — selfish. (You have to pardon me what you might view as crudeness of language, if your desire really is, that which you profess — to learn truth and get instruction from us — who belong to quite a different world from the one you move in.) They are selfish because you must be aware that the chief object of the T.S. is not so much to gratify individual aspirations as to serve our fellow men: and the real value of this term "selfish," which may jar upon your ear, has a peculiar significance with us which it cannot have with you; therefore, and to begin with, you must not accept it otherwise, than in the former sense. Perhaps you will better appreciate our meaning when told that in our view the highest aspirations for the welfare of humanity become tainted with selfishness if, in the mind of the philanthropist there lurks the shadow of desire for self benefit or a tendency to do injustice, even when these exist unconsciously to himself. Yet, you have ever discussed but to put down the idea of a universal Brotherhood, questioned its usefulness, and advised to remodel the T.S. on the principle of a college for the special study of occultism. This, my respected and esteemed friend and Brother — will never do!

Having disposed of "personal motives," let us analyze your "terms" for helping us to do public good. Broadly stated these terms are — first: that an independent Anglo-Indian Theosophical Society shall be founded through your kind services, in the management of which neither of our present representatives shall have any voice; and second, that one of us shall take the new body "under his patronage," — be — "in free and direct communication with its leaders," and afford them "direct proof that he really possessed that superior Knowledge of the forces of nature and the attributes of the human soul which would inspire them with proper confidence in his leadership." I have copied your own words, so as to avoid inaccuracy in defining the position.

From your point of view then, those terms may seem so very reasonable as to provoke no dissent; and, indeed, a majority of your countrymen — if not of Europeans — might share that opinion. What, will you say, can be more reasonable than to ask that teacher — anxious to disseminate his knowledge, and pupil — offering him to do so should be brought face to face and the one give the experimental proofs to the other that his instructions were correct? Man of the world, living in, and in fulI sympathy with it — you are undoubtedly right. But the men of this other world of ours, untutored in your modes of thought, and who find very hard at times to follow and appreciate the latter, can hardly be blamed for not responding as heartily to your suggestions as in your opinion they deserve. The first and most important of our objections is to be found in our Rules. True, we have our schools and teachers, our neophytes and shaberons (superior adepts), and the door is always opened to the right man who knocks. And, we invariably welcome the new comer; — only, instead of going over to him he has to come to us. More than that: unless he has reached that point in the path of occultism from which return is impossible, by his having irrevocably pledged himself to our association, we never — except in cases of utmost moment — visit him or even cross the threshold of his door in visible appearance.

Is any of you so eager for knowledge and the beneficent powers it confers as to be ready to leave your world and come into ours? Then let him come; but he must not think to return until the seal of the mysteries has locked his lips even against the chances of his own weakness or indiscretion. Let him come by all means, as the pupil to the master, and without conditions; or let him wait, as so many others have, and be satisfied with such crumbs of knowledge as may fall in his way.

And supposing you were thus to come — as two of your own countrymen have already — as Mad. B. did, and Mr. O. will; supposing you were to abandon all for the truth; to toil wearily for years up the hard steep road, not daunted by obstacles, firm under every temptation; were to faithfully keep within your heart the Secrets entrusted to you as a trial; had worked with all your energy and unselfishly to spread the truth and provoke men to correct thinking and a correct life — would you consider it just, if, after all your efforts, we were to grant to Mad. B. or Mr. O. as "outsiders" the terms you now ask for yourselves? Of these two persons one has already given three-fourths of a life, the other six years of manhood's prime to us, and both will so labour to the close of their days. Though ever working for their merited reward, yet never demanding it, nor murmuring when disappointed. Even though they respectively could accomplish far less than they do, would it not be a palpable injustice to ignore them as proposed in an important field of Theosophical effort? Ingratitude is not among our vices, nor do we imagine you would wish to advise it. . . .

Neither of them has the least inclination to interfere with the management of the contemplated Anglo-Indian Badly as the phenomena may have been shown, there have still been — as yourself admit — certain ones that are unimpeachable. The "raps on the table when no one touches it," and the "bell sounds in the air" have, you say, "always been regarded as satisfactory," etc., etc. From this, you reason that good "test phenomena" may easily be multiplied ad infinitum." So they can — in any place where our magnetic and other conditions are constantly offered; and where we do not have to act with and through an enfeebled female body in which, as we might say, a vital cyclone is raging much of the time. But, imperfect as may be our visible agent — and often most unsatisfactory and imperfect she is — yet, she is the best available at present, and her phenomena have for about half a century astounded and baffled some of the cleverest minds of the age. If ignorant of "journalistic etiquette" and the requirements of physical science, we still have an intuition of the effects of causes. Since you have written nothing about the very phenomena you properly regard as so convincing we have the right to infer that much precious power may be wasted without better results. By itself the "brooch" affair is — in the eyes of the world — completely useless, and time will prove me right. Your kind intention has entirely failed.

To conclude: we are ready to continue this correspondence if the view given of occult study as above suits you. Through the ordeal described, each of us, whatever his country, or race, has passed. Meanwhile, hoping in the best — yours faithfully as ever


Table of Contents

Letter No. 3a

{October 20, 1880}

I saw K.H. in astral form on the night of 19th of October, 1880, — waking up for a moment but immediately afterwards being rendered unconscious again (in the body and conscious out of the body in the adjacent dressing-room where I saw another of the Brothers afterwards identified with one called "Serapis" by Olcott, — "the youngest of the chohans."

The note about the vision came the following morning, and during that day, the 20th, we went for a picnic to Prospect Hill, when the "pillow incident" occurred.

My Good "Brother,"

In dreams and visions at least, when rightly interpreted there can hardly be an "element of doubt." . . . . I hope to prove to you my presence near you last night by something I took away with me. Your lady will receive it back on the Hill. I keep no pink paper to write upon, but I trust modest white will do as well for what I have to say.

Koot' Hoomi Lal Sing.

Table of Contents

Letter No. 3b

{October 20, 1880}

My "Dear Brother,"

This brooch No. 2 — is placed in this very strange place simply to show to you how very easily a real phenomenon is produced and how still easier it is to suspect its genuineness. Make of it what you like even to classing me with confederates.

The difficulty you spoke of last night with respect to the interchange of our letters I will try to remove. One of our pupils will shortly visit Lahore and the N.W.P. and an address will be sent to you which you can always use; unless, indeed, you really would prefer corresponding through — pillows. Please to remark that the present is not dated from a "Lodge" but from a Kashmir valley.

Yours, more than ever,

Koot' Hoomi Lal Sing.

Table of Contents

Letter No. 3c

{October 20, 1880}

A few words more: why should you have felt disappointed at not receiving a direct reply to your last note? It was received in my room about half a minute after the currents for the production of the pillow dak had been set ready and in full play. And — unless I had assured you that a man of your disposition need have little fear of being "fooled" — there was no necessity for an answer. One favour I will certainly ask of you, and that is, that now that you — the only party to whom anything was ever promised — are satisfied that you should endeavour to disabuse the mind of the amorous Major and show to him his great folly and injustice.

Yours faithfully,

Koot' Hoomi Lal Singh.

Letter 4 Table of Contents

Letter No. 4

Apparently received 5th November {1880}.

Madam and Colonel O. arrived at our house, Allahabad, on December the 1st, 1880. Col. O. went to Benares on the 3rd — Madam joined him on the 11th. Both returned to Allahabad on 20th and stayed until 28th.

Amrita Saras, Oct. 29.

My Dear Brother,

I could assuredly make no objection to the style which you have kindly adopted, in addressing me by name, since it is, as you say, the outcome of a personal regard even greater than I have as yet deserved at your hands. The conventionalities of the weary world, outside our secluded "Ashrums," trouble us but little at any time; least of all now, when it is men not ceremony-masters, we seek, devotion, not mere observances. More and more a dead formalism is gaining ground, and I am truly happy to find so unexpected an ally in a quarter where, hitherto there have not been too many — among the highly educated classes of English Society. A crisis, in a certain sense, is upon us now, and must be met. I might say two crises — one, the Society's, the other for Tibet. For, I may tell you in confidence, that Russia is gradually massing her forces for a future invasion of that country under the pretext of a Chinese War. If she does not succeed it will be due to us; and herein, at least we will deserve your gratitude. You see then, that we have weightier matters than small societies to think about; yet, the T.S. must not be neglected. The affair has taken an impulse, which, if not well guided, might beget very evil issues. Recall to mind the avalanches of your admired Alps, that you have often thought about, and remember that at first their mass is small and their momentum little. A trite comparison you may say, but I cannot think of a better illustration, when viewing the gradual aggregation of trifling events, growing into a menacing destiny for the Theos. Soc. It came quite forcibly upon me the other day as I was coming down the defiles of Kouenlun — Karakorum you call them — and saw an avalanche tumble. I had gone personally to our chief to submit Mr. Hume's important offer, and was crossing over to Lhadak on my way home. What other speculations might have followed I cannot say. But just as I was taking advantage of the awful stillness which usually follows such cataclysm, to get a clearer view of the present situation and the disposition of the "mystics" at Simla, I was rudely recalled to my senses. A familiar voice, as shrill as the one attributed to Saraswati's peacock — which, if we may credit tradition, frightened off the King of the Nagas — shouted along the currents "Olcott has raised the very devil again! . . . The Englishmen are going crazy. . . . Koot Hoomi, come quicker and help me!" — and in her excitement forgot she was speaking English. I must say, that the "Old Lady's" telegrams do strike one like stones from a catapult!

What could I do but come? Argument through space with one who was in cold despair, and in a state of moral chaos was useless. So I determined to emerge from the seclusion of many years and spend some time with her to comfort her as well as I could. But our friend is not one to cause her mind to reflect the philosophical resignation of Marcus Aurelius. The fates never wrote that she could say: "It is a royal thing, when one is doing good to hear evil spoken of himself." . . . I had come for a few days, but now find that I myself cannot endure for any length of time the stifling magnetism even of my own countrymen. I have seen some of our proud old Sikhs drunk and staggering over the marble pavement of their sacred Temple. I have heard an English-speaking Vakil declaim against Yog Vidya and Theosophy, as a delusion and a lie, declaring that English Science had emancipated them from such "degrading superstitions," and saying that it was an insult to India to maintain that the dirty Yogees and Sunnyasis knew anything about the mysteries of nature; or that any living man can or ever could perform any phenomena! I turn my face homeward to-morrow.

The delivery of this letter may very possibly be delayed for a few days, owing to causes which it will not interest you for me to specify. Meanwhile, however, I have telegraphed you my thanks for your obliging compliance with my wishes in the matters you allude to in your letter of the 24th inst. I see with pleasure, that you have not failed to usher me before the world as a possible "confederate." That makes our number ten, I believe? But I must say, that your promise was well and loyally fulfilled. Received at Umritsur on the 27th inst., at 2 p.m., I got your letter about thirty miles beyond Rawul Pindee, five minutes later, and had an acknowledgment wired to you from Jhelum at 4 p.m. on the same afternoon. Our modes of accelerated delivery and quick communications are not then, as you will see, to be despised by the Western world, or even the Aryan, English-speaking and skeptical Vakils.

I could not ask a more judicial frame of mind in an ally than that in which you are beginning to find yourself. My Brother, you have already changed your attitude toward us in a distinct degree: what is to prevent a perfect mutual understanding one day!

Mr. Hume's proposition has been duly and carefully considered. He will, no doubt, advise you of the results as expressed in my letter, to him. Whether he will give our "modes of action" as fair a trial as yourself — is another question. Our Maha (the "Chief") has allowed me to correspond with both of you, and even — in case an Anglo-Indian Branch is formed — to come some day in personal contact with it. It now depends entirely on you. I cannot tell you more. You are quite right as to the standing of our friends in the Anglo-Indian world having been materially improved by the Simla visit; and, it is also true, though you modestly refrain from saying so, that we are mainly indebted to you for this. But quite apart from the unlucky incidents of the Bombay publications, it is not possible that there should be much more at best than a benevolent neutrality shown by your people toward ours. There is so very minute a point of contact between the two civilisations they respectively represent, that one might almost say they could not touch at all. Nor would they but for the few — shall I say eccentrics? — who, like you, dream better and bolder dreams than the rest; and provoking thought, bring the two together by their own admirable audacity. Has it occurred to you that the two Bombay publications, if not influenced, may at least have not been prevented, by those who might have done so, because they saw the necessity for that much agitation to effect the double result of making a needed diversion after the Brooch Grenade, and, perhaps, of trying the strength of your personal interest in occultism and theosophy? I do not say it was so; I but enquire whether the contingency ever presented itself to your mind. I have already caused it to be intimated to you that if the details given in the stolen letter had been anticipated in the Pioneer — a much more appropriate place, and where they would have been handled to better advantage — that document would not have been worth anyone's while to purloin for the Times of India, and therefore no names would have appeared.

Colonel Olcott is doubtless "out of time with the feelings of English people" of both classes; but nevertheless more in time with us than either. Him we can trust under all circumstances, and his faithful service is pledged to us come well, come ill. My dear Brother, my voice is the echo of impartial justice. Where can we find an equal devotion? He is one who never questions, but obeys; who may make innumerable mistakes out of excessive zeal but never is unwilling to repair his fault even at the cost of the greatest self-humiliation; who esteems the sacrifice of comfort and even life something to be cheerfully risked whenever necessary; who will eat any food, or even go without; sleep on any bed, work in any place, fraternise with any outcast, endure any privation for the cause. . . . I admit that his connection with an A. I. Branch would be "an evil" — hence, he will have no more to do with it than he has with the British, (London Branch). His connection will be purely nominal, and may be made more so, by framing your Rules more carefully than theirs; and giving your organization such a self-acting system of Government as would seldom if ever require any outside interference. But to make an independent A.I.B. with the self-same objects, either in whole or a part, as the Parent Society and with the same directors behind the scenes would be not only to deal a mortal blow at the Theos. Soc. but also put upon us a double labour and anxiety without the slightest compensating advantage that any of us can perceive. The Parent S. has never interfered in the slightest degree with the British T.S., nor indeed with any other Branch, whether religious or philosophical. Having formed, or caused to be formed a new branch, the Parent S. charters it (which it cannot now do without our Sanction and signatures), and then usually retires behind the scenes, as you would say. Its further connection with the subject branches is limited to receiving quarterly accounts of their doings and lists of the new Fellows, ratifying expulsions — only when specially called upon as an arbitrator to interfere on account of the Founders' direct connection with us — etc., etc.; it never meddles otherwise in their affairs except when appealed to as a sort of appelate court. And the latter depending on you, what is there to prevent your Society from remaining virtually independent? We are, even more generous than you British are to us. We will not force upon, nor even ask you to sanction a Hindu "Resident" in your Society, to watch the interests of the Parent Paramount Power when we have once declared you independent; but will implicitly trust to your loyalty and word of honour. But if you now so dislike the idea of a purely nominal executive supervision by Col. Olcott — an American of your own race —

you would surely rebel against dictation from a Hindu, whose habits and methods are those of his own people, and whose race, despite your natural benevolence, you have not yet learnt to tolerate, let alone to love or respect. Think well before you ask for our guidance. Our best, most learned. and highest adepts are of the races of the "greasy Tibetans"; and the Penjabi Singhs — you know the lion is proverbially a dirty and offensive beast, despite his strength and courage. Is it certain that your good compatriots would more easily forgive our Hindu solecisms in manners than those of their own kinsmen of America? If my observations have not misled I should say this was doubtful. National prejudices are not apt to leave one's spectacles undimmed. You say "how glad we should be, if that one (to guide you) were yourself," meaning your unworthy correspondent. My good Brother, are you certain, that the pleasant impression you now may have from our correspondence, would not instantly be destroyed upon seeing me? And which of our holy Shaberons has had the benefit of even the little university education and inkling of European manners that has fallen to my share? An instance: I desired Mad. B. to select among the two or three Aryan Punjabees who study Yog Vidya, and our natural mystics, one, whom — without disclosing myself to him too much I could designate as an agent between yourself and us, and whom I was anxious to dispatch to you, with a letter of introduction, and have him speak to you of Yoga and its practical effects. This young gentleman who is as pure as purity itself, whose aspirations and thoughts are of the most spiritual ennobling kind, and who merely through self-exertion is able to penetrate into the regions of the formless worlds — this young man is not fit for — a drawing-room. Having explained to him that the greatest good might result for his country if he helped you to organize a Branch of English mystics by proving to them practically to what wonderful results led the study of Yog, Mad. B. asked him in guarded and very delicate terms to change his dress and turban before starting for Allahabad — for, though she did not give him this reason, they were very dirty and slovenly. You are to tell Mr. Sinnett — she said — that you bring him a letter from our Brother K., with whom he corresponds. But, if he asks you anything either of him or the other Brothers answer him simply and truthfully that you are not allowed to expatiate upon the subject. Speak of Yog and prove to him what powers you have attained. This young man who had consented wrote later on the following curious letter: "Madam," he said, "you who preach the highest standards of morality, of truthfulness, etc., you would have me play the part of an imposter. You ask me to change my clothes at the risk of giving a false idea of my personality and mystifying the gentleman you send me to. And what if he asks me if I personally know Koot'hoomi, am I to keep silent and allow him to think I do? This would be a tacit falsehood, and guilty of that, I would be thrown back into the awful whirl of transmigration!" Here is an illustration of the difficulties under which we have to labour. Powerless to send to you a neophyte before you have pledged yourself to us — we have to either keep back or despatch to you one who at best would shock if not inspire you at once with disgust! The letter would have been given him by my own hand; he had but to promise to hold his tongue upon matters he knows nothing about and could give but a false idea of, and to make himself look cleaner. Prejudice and dead letter again. For over a thousand years, — says Michelet, — the Christian Saints never washed themselves! For how long will our Saints dread to change their clothes for fear of being taken for Marmaliks and the neophytes of rival and cleaner sects!

But these, our difficulties, ought not to prevent you from beginning your work. Colonel O. and Mad. B. seeming willing to become personally responsible for both yourself and Mr. Hume, if you yourself are ready to answer for the fidelity of any man your party may choose as the leader of the A.I.T.S., we are content that the trial shall be made. The field is yours and no one will be allowed to interfere with you except myself on behalf of our Chiefs when you once do me the honour to prefer me to the others. But before one builds the house he makes the plan. Suppose you draft a memorandum as to the constitution and policy of management of the A.I. Society you have in mind and submit it for consideration? If our Chiefs agree to it — and it is not surely they who would show themselves obstructive in the universal onward march, or retard this movement to a higher goal — then you will at once be chartered. But they must first see the plan; and I must ask you to remember that the new Society shall not be allowed to disconnect itself with the Parent Body, though you are at liberty to manage your affairs in your own way without fearing the slightest interference from its President so long as you do not violate the general Rules. And upon this point I refer you to Rule 9. This is the first practical suggestion coming from a Cis and Trans-Himalayan "cave-dweller" whom you have honoured with your confidence.

And now about yourself personally. Far be it from me to discourage one so willing as yourself by setting up impossible barriers to your progress. We never whine over the inevitable but try to make the best of the worst. And though we neither push nor draw into the mysterious domain of occult nature those who are unwilling;

never shrink from expressing our opinions freely and fearlessly, yet we are ever as ready to assist those who come to us; even to — agnostics who assume the negative position of "knowing nothing but phenomena and refuse to believe in anything else." It is true that the married man cannot be an adept, yet without striving to become "a Raja Yogi" he can acquire certain powers and do as much good to mankind and often more, by remaining within the precincts of this world of his. Therefore, shall we not ask you to precipitately change fixed habits of life, before the full conviction of its necessity and advantage has possessed you. You are a man to be left to lead himself, and may be so left with safety. Your resolution is taken to deserve much: time will effect the rest. There are more ways than one for acquiring occult knowledge. "Many are the grains of incense destined for one and the same altar: one falls sooner into the fire, the other later — the difference of time is nothing," remarked a great man when he was refused admission and supreme initiation into the mysteries. There is a tone of complaint in your question whether there ever will be a renewal of the vision you had, the night before the picnic day. Methinks, were you to have a vision nightly, you would soon cease to "treasure" them at all. But there is a far weightier reason why you should not have a surfeit — it would be a waste of our strength. As often as I, or any of us can communicate with you, whether by dreams, waking impressions, letters (in or out of pillows) or personal visits in astral form — it will be done. But remember that Simla is 7,000 feet higher than Allahabad, and the difficulties to be surmounted at the latter are tremendous. I abstain from encouraging you to expect too much, for, like yourself, I am loathe to promise what, for various reasons, I may not be able to perform.

The term "Universal Brotherhood" is no idle phrase. Humanity in the mass has a paramount claim upon us, as I try to explain in my letter to Mr. Hume, which you had better ask the loan of. It is the only secure foundation for universal morality. If it be a dream, it is at least a noble one for mankind and it is the aspiration of the true adept.

Yours faithfully,

Koot' Hoomi Lal Singh.

Letter 5 Table of Contents

Letter No. 5

{Received November 1880}

My Dear Friend,

I have your letter of November 19th, abstracted by our special osmosis from the envelope at Meerut, and yours to our "old lady" in its half empty registered shell safely sent on to Cawnpore, to make her swear at me. . . . . But she is too weak to play at the astral postman just now. I am sorry to see that she has once more proved inaccurate and led you into error; but this is chiefly my own fault, as I often neglect to give her an extra rub over her poor sick head, now, when she forgets and mixes up things more than usual. I did not ask her to tell you "to give up the idea of the A.I. Branch as nothing would come of it," but — "to give up the idea of the Anglo-Indian Branch in cooperation with Mr. Hume, as nothing would come of it." I will send you his answer to my letter and my final epistle and you will judge for yourself. After reading the latter, you will please seal and send it to him, simply stating that you do so on my behalf. Unless he asks the question you better not let him know you have read his letter. He may be proud of it, but — should not.

My dear, good friend, you must not bear me a grudge for what I say to him of the English in general. They are haughty. To us especially, so that we regard it as a national feature. And, you must not confound your own private views — especially those you have now — with those of your countrymen in general. Few, if any — (of course with such exceptions as yourself, where intensity of aspirations makes one disregard all other considerations) — would ever consent to have "a nigger" for a guide or leader, no more than a modern Desdemona would choose an Indian Othello nowadays. The prejudice of race is intense, and even in free England we are regarded as an "inferior race." And this same tone vibrates in your own remark about "a man of the people unused to refined ways" and "a foreigner but a gentleman," the latter being the man to be preferred. Nor would a Hindu be likely to have such a lack of "refined ways" disregarded in him were he "an adept" twenty times over again; and this very same trait appears prominent in Viscount Amberley's criticism on the "underbred Jesus." Had you paraphrased your sentence and said: — "a foreigner but no gentleman" (according to English notions) you could not have added as you did, that he would be thought the fittest. Hence, I say it again, that the majority of our Anglo-Indians, among whom the terms "Hindu" or "Asiatic" is generally coupled with a vague yet actual idea of one who uses his fingers instead of a bit of cambric, and who abjures soap — would most certainly prefer an American to a "greasy Thibetan." But you need not tremble for me. Whenever I make my appearance — whether astrally or physically — before my friend A. P. Sinnett, I will not forget to invest a certain sum in a square of the finest Chinese silk to carry in my Chogga pocket, nor to create an atmosphere of sandal-wood and Kashmir roses. This is the least I could do in atonement for my countrymen. But then, you see, I am but a slave of my masters; and if, allowed to gratify my own friendly feeling for you, and attend to you individually, I may not be permitted to do as much for others. Nay, to tell truth, I know I am not permitted to do so, and Mr. Hume's unfortunate letter has contributed much to it. There is a distinct group or section in our fraternity who attend to our casual and very rare accessions of another race and blood, and who brought across the threshold Captain Remington and two other Englishmen during this century. And these "Brothers" — do not habitually use floral essences.

So the test of the 27th was no test phenomenon? Of course, of course. But did you try to get, as you said you would, the original MSS. of the Jhelum dispatch? Though our hollow but plethoric friend, Mrs. B., were even proved to be my multum in parvo, my letter-writer, and to manufacture my epistles, yet, unless she were ubiquitous or had the gift of flying from Amritsur to Jhelum — a distance over 200 miles — in two minutes, how could she have written for me the dispatch in my own handwriting at Jhelum hardly two hours after your letter was received by her at Amritsur? This is why I was not sorry that you said you would send for it, for, with this dispatch in your possession, no "detractors" would be very strong, nor even the skeptical logic of Mr. Hume prevail.

Naturally you imagine that the "nameless revelation" — which now reechoes in England — would have been pounced upon far more eagerly than even it was, by the Times of India, if it revealed the names. But here again, I will prove you wrong. Had you first printed the account, the T. of I. could never have published "A Day with Madame B.," since that nice bit of American "sensationalism" would not have been written by Olcott at all. It would not have had its raison d'etre. Anxious to collect for his Society every proof corroborative of the occult powers of what he terms the 1st Section, and seeing that you remained silent, our gallant Colonel felt his hand itch until it brought everything to light, and — plunged everything into darkness and consternation! . . . "Et voici pourquoi nous n'irons plus au bois," as the French song goes.

Did you write "tune"? Well, well; I must ask you to buy me a pair of spectacles in London. And yet — out of "time" or out of "tune" is all one, as it seems. But you ought to adopt my old fashioned habit of "little lines" over the "m's." Those bars are useful, even though "out of tune and time" with modern caligraphy. Besides, bear in mind, that these my letters, are not written but impressed or precipitated and then all mistakes corrected.

We will not discuss, at present, whether your aims and objects are so widely different from those of Mr. Hume's; but if he may be actuated by "a purer and broader philanthropy," the way he sets to work to achieve these aims will never carry him beyond pure theoretical disquisitions upon the subject. No use now in trying to represent him in any other light. His letter that you will soon read — is, as I say to himself, "a monument of pride and unconscious selfishness." He is too just and superior a man to be guilty of petty vanities; but his pride climbs like that of the mythical Lucifer; and, you may believe me — if I have any experience in human nature — when I say, that this is Hume — au naturel. It is no hasty conclusion of mine based upon any personal feeling, but the decision of the greatest of our living adepts — the Shaberon of Than–La. Of whatever question he touches his treatment is the same: a stubborn determination to make everything either fit his own foregone conclusions or — sweep it away by a rush of ironical and adverse criticism. Mr. Hume is a very able man and — Hume to the core. Such a state of mind offers little attraction, as you will understand, to any of us who might be willing to come and help him.

No; I do not and never will "despise" any "feeling" however it may clash with my own principles, when it is expressed as frankly and openly as yours. You may be, and undoubtedly are, moved by more egotism than broad benevolence for mankind. Yet as you confess it without mounting any philanthropical stilts, I tell you candidly that you have far more chances than Mr. Hume to learn a good bit of occultism. I, for one, will do all I can for you, under the circumstances and restrained as I am by fresh orders. I will not tell you to give up this or that, for, unless you exhibit beyond any doubt the presence in you of the necessary germs it would be as useless as it would be cruel. But I say — TRY. Do not despair. Unite to yourself several determined men and women and make experiments in mesmerism and the usual so-called "spiritual" phenomena. If you act in accordance with prescribed methods you are sure to ultimately obtain results. Apart from this, I will do my best and — who knows! — Strong will creates and sympathy attracts even adepts, whose laws are antagonistic to their mixing with the uninitiated. If you are willing I will send you an Essay showing why in Europe more than anywhere else a Universal Brotherhood, i.e., an association of "affinities" of strong magnetic yet dissimilar forces and polarities centred around one dominant idea, is necessary for successful achievements in occult Sciences. What one will fail to do — the combined many will achieve. Of course you will have — in case you organize — to put up with Olcott at the head of the Parent Society, hence — nominally the President of all the existing Branches. But he will be no more your "leader " than he is the leader of the British Theos. Society, which has its own President, its own Rules and Bylaws. You will be chartered by him, and that's all. In some cases he will have to sign a paper or two — 4 times a year the accounts sent in by your Secretary; yet he has no right to interfere either with your administration or modes of action, so long as these do not clash with the general Rules, and he certainly has neither the ability nor the desire of being your leader. And, of course, you (meaning the whole Society) will have besides your own President chosen by yourselves, "a qualified professor of occultism" to instruct you. But, my good friend, abandon all notion that this "Professor" can bodily appear and instruct you for years to come. I may come to you personally — unless you drive me off, as Mr. Hume did — I cannot come to ALL. You may get phenomena and proofs, but even were you to fall into the old error and attribute them to "Spirits" we could but show you your mistake by philosophical and logical explanations; no adept would be allowed to attend your meetings.

Of course you ought to write your book. I do not see, why in any case it should be impracticable. Do so, by all means, and any help I can give you I will. You ought to put yourself immediately in correspondence with Lord Lindsay, and take the Simla phenomena and your correspondence with me as the subject. He is intensely interested in all such experiments, and being a theosophist and upon the General Council is sure to welcome your overtures. Take the ground that you belong to the T.S., that you are the widely known Editor of the Pioneer, and that, knowing how great an interest he takes in the "spiritual" phenomena you submit to his consideration the very extraordinary things which took place at Simla, with such additional details as have not been published. The best of the British Spiritualists could, with proper management, be converted into Theosophists. But neither Dr. Wyld, nor Mr. Massey, seem to have the requisite force. I advise you to confer personally with Lord Lindsay upon the theosophical situation at home and in India. Perhaps you two might work together: the correspondence I now suggest will pave the way.

Even if Madame B. might "be induced" to give the A.I. Society any "practical instruction" I am afraid she has remained too long a time outside the adytum to be of much use for practical explanations. However, though it does not depend upon me, I will see what I can do in this direction. But I fear she is sadly in need of a few months of recuperative villagiatura, on the glaciers, with her old Master before she can be entrusted with such a difficult task. Be very cautious with her in case she stops with you on her way down home. Her nervous system is terribly shaken, and she requires every care. Will you please spare me needless trouble by informing me of the year, date, and hour of Mrs. Sinnett's birth?

Ever yours sincerely,


Letter 6 Table of Contents

Letter No. 6

Received at Allahabad about December 10th, 1880.

No — you do not "write too much." I am only sorry to have so little time at my disposal; hence — to find myself unable to answer you as speedily as I otherwise would. Of course I have to read every word you write: otherwise I would make a fine mess of it. And whether it be through my physical or spiritual eyes the time required for it is practically the same. As much may be said of my replies. For, whether I "precipitate" or dictate them or write my answers myself, the difference in time saved is very minute. I have to think it over, to photograph every word and sentence carefully in my brain before it can be repeated by "precipitation." As the fixing on chemically prepared surfaes of the images formed by the camera requires a previous arrangement within the focus of the object to be represented, for otherwise — as often found in bad photographs — the legs of the sitter might appear out of all proportion with the head, and so on, so we have to first arrange our sentences and impress every letter to appear on paper in our minds before it becomes fit to be read. For the present, it is all I can tell you. When science will have learned more about the mystery of the lithophyl (or lithobiblion) and how the impress of leaves comes originally to take place on stones, then will I be able to make you better understand the process. But you must know and remember one thing: we but follow and servilely copy nature in her works.

No; we need argue no longer upon the unfortunate question of a "Day with Mad. B." It is the more useless, since you say, you have no right to crush and grind your uncivil and often blackguardly opponents in the Pioneer — even in your own defence — your proprietors objecting to the mention of occultism altogether. As they are Christians it is no matter of great wonder. Let us be charitable and hope they will get their own reward: die and become angels of right and Truth — winged paupers of the Christian heaven.

Unless you join several, and organize somehow or other, I am afraid I will prove but of little help to you practically. My dear friend, I have my "proprietors" also. For reasons best known to themselves they have set their foot upon the idea of teaching isolated individuals. I will correspond with you and give you proofs from time to time of my existence and presence. To teach or instruct you — is altogether another question. Hence to sit with your lady is more than useless. Your magnetisms are too similar and — you will get nothing.

I will translate my Essay and send it to you as soon as I can. Your idea of corresponding with your friends and fellows is the next best thing to do. But do not fail to write to Lord Lindsay.

I am a little "too hard" upon Hume, you say. Am I? His is a highly intellectual and, I confess, a spiritual nature too. Yet, he is every bit of him "Sir Oracle." It may be that it is the very exuberance of that great intellect which seeks issue through every chink, and never loses an opportunity to relieve the fullness of the brain, which overflows with thought. Finding in his quiet daily life too meagre a field with but "Moggy" and Davison to sow upon — his intellect bursts the dam and pounces upon every imagined event, every possible though improbable fact his imagination can suggest, to interpret it in his own conjectural way. Nor do I wonder that such a skilled workman in intellectual mosaic as he, finding suddenly, the most fertile of quarries, the most precious of colour-stores in this idea of our Fraternity and the T.S. — should pick out ingredients from it to daub our faces with. Placing us before a mirror which reflects us as he finds us in his own fertile imagination he says: "Now, you mouldy relics of a mouldy Past, look at yourselves how you really are!" A very, very excellent man our friend Mr. Hume, but utterly unfit for moulding into an adept.

As little, and far less than yourself does he seem to realize our real object in the formation of an A.I. Branch. The truths and mysteries of occultism constitute, indeed, a body of the highest spiritual importance, at once profound and practical for the world at large. Yet, it is not as a mere addition to the tangled mass of theory or speculation in the world of science that they are being given to you, but for their practical bearing on the interests of mankind. The terms "unscientific," "impossible," "hallucination," "impostor," have hitherto been used in a very loose, careless way, as implying in the occult phenomena something either mysterious and abnormal, or a premeditated imposture. And this is why our chiefs have determined to shed upon a few recipient minds more light upon the subject, and to prove to them that such manifestations are as reducible to law as the simplest phenomena of the physical universe. The wiseacres say: "The age of miracles is past," but we answer, it never existed! While not unparalleled, or without their counterpart in universal history, these phenomena must and WILL come with an overpowering influence upon the world of skeptics and bigots. They have to prove both destructive and constructive — destructive in the pernicious errors of the past, in the old creeds and superstitions which suffocate in their poisonous embrace like the Mexican weed nigh all mankind; but constructive of new institutions of a genuine, practical Brotherhood of Humanity where all will become co-workers of nature, will work for the good of mankind with and through the higher planetary Spirits — the only "Spirits" we believe in. Phenomenal elements, previously unthought of — undreamt of — will soon begin manifesting themselves day by day with constantly augmented force, and disclose at last the secrets of their mysterious workings. Plato was right: ideas rule the world; and, as men's minds will receive new ideas, laying aside the old and effete, the world will advance: mighty revolutions will spring from them; creeds and even powers will crumble before their onward march crushed by the irresistible force. It will be just as impossible to resist their influx, when the time comes, as to stay the progress of the tide. But all this will come gradually on, and before it comes we have a duty set before us: that of sweeping away as much as possible the dross left to us by our pious forefathers. New ideas have to be planted on clean places, for these ideas touch upon the most momentous subjects. It is not physical phenomena but these universal ideas that we study, as to comprehend the former, we have to first understand the latter. They touch man's true position in the universe, in relation to his previous and future births; his origin and ultimate destiny; the relation of the mortal to the immortal; of the temporary to the eternal; of the finite to the Infinite; ideas larger, grander, more comprehensive, recognizing the universal reign of Immutable Law, unchanging and unchangeable in regard to which there is only an ETERNAL NOW, while to uninitiated mortals time is past or future as related to their finite existence on this material speck of dirt. This is what we study and what many have solved.

And now it is your province to decide which will you have: the highest philosophy or simple exhibitions of occult powers. Of course this is by far not the last word between us and — you will have time to think it over. The Chiefs want a "Brotherhood of Humanity," a real Universal Fraternity started; an institution which would make itself known throughout the world and arrest the attention of the highest minds. I will send you my Essay. Will you be my co-worker and patiently wait for minor phenomena? I think I foresee the answer. At all events the holy lamp of spiritual light burning in you (however dimly) there is hope for you, and — for me, also. Yes; put yourself in search after natives if there are no English people to be had. But think you, the spirit and power of persecution gone from this enlightened age? Time will prove. Meanwhile, being human I have to rest. I took no sleep for over 60 hours.

Ever yours truly,


{see Letter 93 for explanation of how this letter was written}

Table of Contents

Letter No. 7

Enclosed in Mad. B.'s from Bombay. Received January 30th, 1881.

There is no fault on your part in the whole matter. I am sorry you should think I am imputing any fault to you. If anything, you might almost feel you had to blame me for giving you hopes without having the shadow of such a right. I ought to have been less optimistic and then you would have been less sanguine in your expectations. I really feel as if I had wronged you! Happy, thrice happy and blessed are they, who have never consented to visit the world beyond their snow-capped mountains; whose physical eyes have never lost sight of for one day of the endless ranges of hills, and the long unbroken line of eternal snows! Verily and indeed, do they live in, and have found their Ultima Thule. . . .

Why say, you are a victim of circumstances, since nothing is yet seriously changed and that much, if not all, depends upon future developments? You were not asked or expected to revolutionise your life habits, but at the same time you were warned not to expect too much as you are. If you read between the lines you must have remarked what I said about the very narrow margin left to me for doing as I choose in the matter. But despond not, for it is all but a matter of time. The world was not evolved between two monsoons, my good friend. If you had come to me as a boy of 17, before the world had put its heavy hand upon you, your task would have been twenty-fold easier. And now, we must take you, and you must see yourself as you are, not as the ideal human image which our emotional fancy always projects for us upon the glass. Be patient, friend and brother; and I must repeat again — be our helpful co-worker; but in your own sphere, and according to your ripest judgment. Since our venerable Hobilgan has decreed in his wise prevision that I had no right to encourage you to enter a path, where you would have to roll the stone of Sisyphus, held back as you surely would be by your previous and most sacred duties — we really must wait. I know your motives are sincere and true, and that a real change, and in the right direction, has come over you, though even to yourself that change is imperceptible. And — the chiefs know it too. But, say they — motives are vapours, as attenuated as the atmospheric moisture: and, as the latter develops its dynamic energy for man's use only when concentrated and applied as steam or hydraulic power, so the practical value of good motives is best seen when they take the form of deeds. . . . "Yes, we will wait and see" — they say. And now I have told you as much as I ever had the right to say. You have more than once already helped this Society, even though you did not care for it yourself, and these deeds are upon record. Nay — they are even more meritorious in you, than they would [be] in anyone else, considering your well grounded ideas of that poor organization at present. And, you have thereby won a friend — one, far higher and better than myself — and one who will in future help me to defend your cause, able as he is, to do it far more effectually than I can, for he belongs to the "foreign Section."

I believe I have laid down for you the general lines on which we wish the work of organizing — if possible — the Anglo-Indian Branch to proceed: the details must be left to you — if you are still willing to help me.

If you have anything to say or ask any questions, you better write to me and I will always answer your letters. But, ask for no phenomena for a while, as it is but such paltry manifestations which now stand in your way.

Yours ever truly,

K. H.

Letter 8 Table of Contents

Letter No. 8

Received through Mad. B. About February 20th, 1881.

{Mr. and Mrs. Sinnett and their young son were on their way to England. During the trip Sinnett

wrote and published The Occult World. he returned alone July 5, Mrs. Sinnett being too ill to


My dear friend, you are certainly on the right path: the path of deeds and actions, not mere words — may you live long and keep on!. . . I hope this will not be regarded by you as an encouragement to be "goody goody" — a happy expression which made me laugh — but you indeed step in as a kind of Kalka Avatar dispelling the shadows of "Kali-yug" — the black night of the perishing T.S. and driving away before you the fata morgana of its Rules. I must cause the word fecit to appear after your name in invisible but indelible characters on the list of the General Council, as it may prove some day a secret door to the heart of the sternest of Hobilgans. . . .

Though a good deal occupied — alas, as usual — I must contrive to send you a somewhat lengthy farewell epistle before you take up a journey that may have most important results — and not alone for our cause. . . . You understand, do you not, that it is no fault of mine if I cannot meet you as I would? Nor is it yours, but rather that of your life-long environment and a special delicate task I have been entrusted with since I knew you. Do not blame me then, if I do not show myself in more tangible shape, as not you alone, but I myself might desire! When I am not permitted to do so for Olcott — who has toiled for us these five years, how could I be for others who have undergone none of his training as yet? This applies equally to the case of the Lord Crawford and Balcarres, an excellent gentleman — imprisoned by the world. His is a sincere and noble, though may be a little too repressed nature. He asks what hope he may have? I say — every hope. For he has that within himself that so very few possess: an exhaustless source of magnetic fluid which, if he only had the time, he could call out in torrents and need no other master than himself. His own powers would do the work and his own great experience be a sure guide for him. But, he would have to guard against, and avoid every foreign influence — especially those antagonistic to the nobler study of MAN as an integral Brahm, the microcosm free and entirely independent of either the help or control of the invisible agencies the "new dispensation" (bombastic word!) calls "Spirits." His Lordship will understand my meaning without any further explanation: he is welcome to read this if he chooses, if the opinions of an obscure Hindu interest him. Were he a poor man, he might have become an English Dupotet, with the addition of great scientific attainments in exact science. But alas —! what the peerage has gained psychology has lost. . . . And yet it is not too late. But see, even after mastering magnetic science and giving his powerful mind to the study of the noblest branches of exact science, how even he has failed to lift more than a small corner of the veil of mystery. Ah! that whirling, showy, glittering world, full of insatiable ambition, where family and the State parcel out between them a man's nobler nature, as two tigers a carcase, and leave him without hope or light! How many recruits could we not have from it, if no sacrifice were exacted! His Lordship's letter to you exhales an influence of sincerity tinged with regret. This is a good man at heart with latent capacity for being a far better and a happier one. Had his lot not been cast as it has, and had his intellectual power all been turned upon Soul-culture, he would have achieved much more than he ever dreamt. Out of such material were adepts made in the days of Aryan glory. But I must dwell no longer upon this case; and I crave his Lordship's pardon if, in the bitterness of my regret I overstepped in any way the bounds of propriety, in this too free "psychometrical delineation of character" as the American mediums would express it . . . full measure only bounds excess" but — I dare go no farther. Ah, my too positive and yet impatient friend, if you but had such latent capacities!

The "direct communication" with me of which you write in your supplement note, and the "enormous advantage" that it would bring "to the book itself, if it can be conceded," would be so conceded at once, did it depend but of me alone. Though it is not often judicious to repeat oneself, yet I am so anxious that you should realize the present impracticability of such an arrangement, were it even conceded by our Superiors, that I will indulge in a brief retrospect of principles stated.

We might leave out of the question the most vital point — one, you would hesitate perhaps to believe — that the refusal concerns as much your own salvation (from the standpoint of your worldly material considerations) as my enforced compliance with our time honoured Rules. Again I might cite the case of Olcott (who, had he not been permitted to communicate face to face — and without any intermediary — with us, might have subsequently shown less zeal and devotion but more discretion) and his fate up to the present. But, the comparison would doubtless appear to you strained. Olcott — would you say — is an enthusiast, a stubborn, unreasoning mystic, who goes headlong before him, blindfold, and who will not allow himself to look forward with his own eyes. While you are a sober, matter-of-fact man of the world, the son of your generation of cool thinkers; ever keeping fancy under the curb, and saying to enthusiasm: "Thus far shalt thou go and no farther." . . . Perhaps you are right — perhaps not. "No lama knows where the ber-chhen will hurt him until he puts it on," says a Thibetan proverb. However, let that pass, for I must tell you now that for opening "direct communication" the only possible means would be: (1) For each of us to meet in our own physical bodies. I being where I am, and you in your own quarters, there is a material impediment for me. (2) For both to meet in our astral form — which would necessitate your "getting out" of yours, as well as my leaving my body. The spiritual impediment to this is on your part. (3) To make you hear my voice either within you or near you as "the old lady" does. This would be feasible in either of two ways: (a) My chiefs have but to give me permission to set up the conditions — and this for the present they refuse; or (b) for you to hear my voice, i.e., my natural voice without any psycho-physiological tamasha being employed by me (again as we often do among ourselves). But then, to do this, not only have one's spiritual senses to be abnormally opened, but one must himself have mastered the great secret — yet undiscovered by science — of, so to say abolishing all the impediments of space; of neutralizing for the time being the natural obstacle of intermediary particles of air and forcing the waves to strike your ear in reflected sounds or echo. Of the latter you know as yet only enough to regard this as an unscientific absurdity. Your physicists, not having until recently mastered acoustics in this direction, any further than to acquire a perfect (?) knowledge of the vibration of sonorous bodies and of reverberations through tubes, may sneeringly ask: "Where are your indefinitely continued sonorous bodies, to conduct through space the vibrations of the voice?" We answer that our tubes, though invisible, are indestructible and far more perfect than those of modern physicists, by whom the velocity of the transmission of mechanical force through the air is represented as at the rate of 1,100 feet a second and no more — if I mistake not. But then, may there not be people who have found more perfect and rapid means of transmission, from being somewhat better acquainted with the occult powers of air (akas) and having plus a more cultivated judgment of sounds? But of this we will argue later on.

There is still more serious inconvenience; an almost insurmountable obstacle — for the present, and one, under which I myself am labouring, while even I do no more than correspond with you, a simple thing that any other mortal could do. It is my utter inability to make you understand my meaning in my explanation of even physical phenomena, let alone the spiritual rationale. This is not the first time I mention it. It is, as though a child should ask me to teach him the highest problems of Euclid before he had even begun studying the elementary rules of arithmetic. Only the progress one makes in the study of arcane knowledge from its rudimental elements, brings him gradually to understand our meaning. Only thus, and not otherwise, does it, strengthening and refining those mysterious links of sympathy between intelligent men — the temporarily isolated fragments of the universal Soul and the Cosmic Soul itself — bring them into full rapport. Once this established, then only will these awakened sympathies serve, indeed, to connect MAN with — what for the want of a European scientific word more competent to express the idea, I am again compelled to describe as that energetic chain which binds together the material and Immaterial Kosmos, — Past, Present, and Future — and quicken his perceptions so as to clearly grasp, not merely all things of matter, but of Spirit also. I feel even irritated at having to use these three clumsy words — past, present and future! Miserable concepts of the objective phases of the Subjective Whole, they are about as ill adapted for the purpose as an axe for fine carving. Oh, my poor, disappointed friend, that you were already so far advanced on THE PATH, that this simple transmission of ideas should not be encumbered by the conditions of matter, the union of your mind with ours — prevented by its induced incapabilities! Such is unfortunately the inherited and self-acquired grossness of the Western mind; and so greatly have the very phrases expressive of modern thoughts been developed in the line of practical materialism, that it is now next to impossible either for them to comprehend or for us to express in their own languages anything of that delicate seemingly ideal machinery of the Occult Kosmos. To some little extent that faculty can be acquired by the Europeans through study and meditation but — that's all. And here is the bar which has hitherto prevented a conviction of the theosophical truths from gaining wider currency among Western nations; caused theosophical study to be cast aside as useless and

fantastic by Western philosophers. How shall I teach you to read and write or even comprehend a language of which no alphabet palpable, or words audible to you have yet been invented! How could the phenomena of our modern electrical science be explained to — say, a Greek philosopher of the days of Ptolemy were he suddenly recalled to life — with such an unbridged hiatus in discovery as would exist between his and our age? Would not the very technical terms be to him an unintelligible jargon, an abracadabra of meaningless sounds, and the very instruments and apparatuses used, but "miraculous" monstrosities? And suppose, for one instant, I were to describe to you the hues of those colour rays that lie beyond the so-called "visible spectrum"

— rays invisible to all but a very few even among us; to explain, how we can fix in space any one of the so-called subjective or accidental colors — the complement, (to speak mathematically) moreover, of any other given colour of a dichromatic body (which alone sounds like an absurdity), could you comprehend, do you think, their optical effect or even my meaning? And, since you see them not, such rays, nor can know them, nor have you any names for them as yet in Science, if I were to tell you: — "My good friend Sinnett, if you please, without moving from your writing desk, try search for, and produce before your eyes the whole solar spectrum decomposed into fourteen prismatic colors (seven being complementary), as it is but with the help of that occult light that you can see me from a distance as I see you" . . . . what think you, would be your answer? What would you have to reply? Would you not be likely enough to retort by telling me in your own quiet, polite way, that as there never were but seven (now three) primary colours, which, moreover, have never yet by any known physical process been seen decomposed further than the seven prismatic hues — my invitation was as "unscientific" as it was "absurd"? Adding that my offer to search for an imaginary solar "complement" being no compliment to your knowledge of physical science — I had better, perhaps, go and search for my mythical "dichromatic" and solar "pairs" in Thibet, for modern Science has hitherto been unable to bring under any theory even so simple a phenomenon as the colors of all such dichromatic bodies. And yet — truth knows — these colors are objective enough!


So you see, the insurmountable difficulties in the way of attaining not only Absolute but even primary knowledge in Occult Science, for one situated as you are. How could you make your self understood — command in fact, those semi-intelligent Forces, whose means of communicating with us are not through spoken words but through sounds and colours, in correlations between the vibrations of the two? For sound, light and colours are the main factors in forming these grades of Intelligences, these beings, of whose very existence you have no conception, nor are you allowed to believe in them — Atheists and Christians, materialists and Spiritualists, all bringing forward their respective arguments against such a belief — Science objecting stronger than either of these to such a "degrading superstition"!

Thus, because they cannot with one leap over the boundary walls attain to the pinnacles of Eternity; because we cannot take a savage from the centre of Africa and make him comprehend at once the Principia of Newton or the "Sociology" of Herbert Spencer; or make an unlettered child write a new Iliad in old Achaian Greek; or an ordinary painter depict scenes in Saturn or sketch the inhabitants of Arcturus — because of all this our very existence is denied! Yes; for this reason are believers in us pronounced impostors and fools, and the very science which leads to the highest goal of the highest knowledge, to the real tasting of the Tree of Life and Wisdom — is scouted as a wild flight of Imagination!

Most earnestly do I ask you not to see in the above a mere ventilation of personal feeling. My time is precious and I have none to lose. Still less ought you to see in this an effort to disgust or dissuade you from the noble work you have just begun. Nothing of the kind; for what I now say may avail for as much as it can and no more; but — vera pro gratis — I WARN you, and will say no more, apart from reminding you in a general way, that the task you are so bravely undertaking, that Missio in partis infidelium — is the most ungrateful, perhaps, of all tasks! But, if you believe in my friendship for you, if you value the word of honour of one who never — never during his whole life polluted his lips with an untruth, then do not forget the words I once wrote to you (see my last letter) of those who engaged themselves in the occult sciences: he who does it "must either reach the goal or perish. Once fairly started on the way to the great Knowledge, to doubt is to risk insanity; to come to a dead stop is to fall; to recede is to tumble backward, headlong into an abyss." Fear not, — if you are sincere, and that you are — now. Are you as sure of yourself, as to future?

But I believe it quite time to turn to less transcendental and what you would call less gloomy and more mundane matters. Here, no doubt, you will be much more at home. Your experience, your training, your intellect, your knowledge of the exterior world, in short, all combine to aid you in the accomplishment of the task you have undertaken. For, they place you on an infinitely higher level than myself as regards the consideration of writing a book, after your Society's "own heart." Though the interest I take in it may amaze some who are likely to retort on me and my colleagues with our own arguments, and to remark that our "boasted elevation over the common herd" (our friend Mr. Hume's words) — above the interests and passions of ordinary humanity, must militate against our having any conception of the ordinary affairs of life — yet I confess that I do take an interest in this book and its success, as great as in the success in life of its future author.

I hope that at least you will understand that we (or most of us) are far from being the heartless, morally dried up mummies some would fancy us to be. "Mejnoor" is very well, where he is — as an ideal character of a thrilling — in many respects truthful story. Yet, believe me, few of us would care to play the part in life of a dessicated pansy between the leaves of a volume of solemn poetry. We may not be quite the "boys" — to quote Olcott's irreverent expression when speaking of us — yet none of our degree are like the stern hero of Bulwer's romance. While the facilities of observation secured to some of us by our condition certainly give a greater breadth of view, a more pronounced and impartial, as a more widely spread humaneness — for answering Addison, we might justly maintain that it is . . . "the business of 'magic' to humanize our natures with compassion" for the whole mankind as all living beings, instead of concentrating and limiting our affections to one predilected race — yet few of us (except such as have attained the negation of Moksha) can so far enfranchise ourselves from the influence of our earthly connection as to be insusceptible in various degrees to the higher pleasures, emotions, and interests of the common run of humanity. Until final emancipation reabsorbs the Ego, it must be conscious of the purer sympathies called out by the esthetic effects of high art, its tenderest cords respond to the call of the holier and nobler human attachments. Of course, the greater the progress towards deliverance, the less this will be the case, until, to crown all, human and purely individual personal feelings — blood-ties and friendship, patriotism and race predilection — all will give away, to become blended into one universal feeling, the only true and holy, the only unselfish and Eternal one — Love, an Immense Love for humanity — as a Whole! For it is "Humanity" which is the great orphan, the only disinherited one upon this Earth, my friend. And it is the duty of every man who is capable of an unselfish impulse, to do something, however little, for its welfare. Poor, poor humanity! It reminds me of the old fable of the war between the Body and its members: here too, each limb of this huge "Orphan" — fatherless and motherless — selfishly cares but for itself. The body uncared for suffers eternally, whether the limbs are at war or at rest. Its suffering and agony never cease. . . . And who can blame it — as your materialistic philosophers do — if, in this everlasting isolation and neglect it has evolved gods, unto whom "it ever cries for help, but is not heard!" . . . Thus — "Since there is hope for man only in man I would not let one cry whom I could save! . . ."

Yet I confess that I, individually, am not yet exempt from some of the terrestrial attachments. I am still attracted toward some men more than toward others, and philanthropy as preached by our Great Patron — "the Saviour of the World — The Teacher of Nirvana and the Law . . . ." has never killed in me either individual preferences of friendship, love — for my next of kin, or the ardent feeling of patriotism for the country — in which I was last materially individualized. And, in this connection, I may some day, unasked, offer a bit of advice to my friend Mr. Sinnett, to whisper into the ear of the Editor of the PIONEER En attendant — may I beg the former to inform Dr. Wyld, the Prest. of the British T.S., of the few truths concerning us as shown above? Will you kindly undertake to persuade this excellent gentleman, that not one of the humble "dew drops" which, assuming under various pretexts the form of vapour, have at various periods disappeared in the space to congeal in the white Himalayan clouds, have ever tried to slip back into the shining Sea of Nirvana through the unhealthy process of hanging by the legs or by making unto themselves another "coat of Skin" out of the Sacred cow-dung of the "thrice holy" cow! The British President labours under the most original ideas about us, whom he persists in calling "Yogis," without allowing the slightest margin to the enormous differences which exist even between "Hatha and Raj Yog." This mistake must be laid at the door of Mrs. B. — the able editor of the Theosophist; who fills up her volumes with the practices of divers Sannyasis and other "blessed ones" from the plains, without ever troubling herself with a few additional lines of explanation.

And now, to still more important matters. Time is precious and material (I mean writing material) is still more so. "Precipitation" — in your case having become unlawful; lack of — whether ink or paper — standing no better chance for "tamasha," and I, being far away from home, and at a place where a stationer's shop is less needed than breathing air, our correspondence threatens to break very abruptly, unless I manage my stock in hand judiciously. A friend promises to supply me in case of great need with a few stray sheets, memento relics of his grandfather's will, by which he disinherited him and thus made his "fortune." But, as he never wrote one line but once, he says — for the last eleven years, except on such "double superfin glace" made at Thibet as you might irreverently mistake for blotting paper in its primitive days, and that the will is drawn upon a like material — we might as well turn to your book at once. Since you do me the favour of asking my opinion, I may tell you that the idea is an excellent one. Theosophy needs such help, and the results will be what you anticipate in England as well. It may also help our friends in Europe — generally.

I lay no restrictions upon your making use of anything I may have written to you or Mr. Hume, having full confidence in your tact and judgment as to what should be printed and how it should be presented. I must only ask you for reasons upon which I must be silent (and I am sure you will respect that silence) not to use one single word or passage from my last letter to you — the one written after my long silence, no date, and the first one forwarded to you by our "old lady." I just quoted from it at page 4. Do me the favour, if my poor epistles are worth preserving, to lay it by in a separate and sealed envelope. You may have to unseal it only after a certain period of time has elapsed. As to the rest — I relinquish it to the mangling tooth of criticism. Nor would I interfere with the plan you have roughly sketched out in your mind. But I would strongly recommend you in its execution to lay the greatest stress upon small circumstances — (could you oblige me with some receipt for blue ink?!) which tend to show the impossibility of fraud or conspiracy. Reflect well, how bold a thing it is to endorse phenomena as adeptic which the Spiritsts have already stamped as proofs of mediumship and skeptics as legerdemain. You should not omit one jot or tittle of collateral evidence that supports your position, something you have neglected doing in your "A" letter in the Pioneer. For instance, my friend tells me that it was a thirteenth cup (1) and the pattern unmatchable, in Simla at least. The pillow was chosen by yourself — and yet the word "pillow" occurs in my note to you, just as the word "tree" or anything else would have been substituted, had you chosen another depository, instead of the pillow. You will find all such trifles serving you as the most powerful shield for yourself against ridicule and sneers. Then you will of course, aim to show that this Theosophy is no new candidate for the world's attention, but only the restatement of principles which have been recognised from the very infancy of mankind. The historic sequence ought to be succinctly yet graphically traced through the successive evolutions of philosophical schools, and illustrated with accounts of the experimental demonstrations of occult power ascribed to various thaumaturgists. The alternate breakings-out and subsidences of mystical phenomena, as well as their shiftings from one centre to another of population, show the conflicting play of the opposing forces of spirituality and animalism. And lastly it will appear that the present tidal-wave of phenomena, with its varied effects upon human thought and feeling, made the revival of Theosophical enquiry an indispensable necessity. The only problem to solve is the practical one, of how best to promote the necessary study, and give to the spiritualistic movement a needed upward impulse. It is a good beginning to make the inherent capabilities of the inner, living man better comprehended. To lay down the scientific proposition that since akrshu (attraction) and Prshu (repulsion) are the law of nature, there can be no intercourse or relations between clean and unclean Souls — embodied or disembodied; and hence, ninety-nine hundredths of supposed spiritual communications, are, prima facie false. Here is as great a fact to work upon as you can find, and it cannot be made too plain. So, while a better selection might have been made for the Theosophist in the way of illustrative anecdotes, as, for instance, well authenticated historical cases, yet the theory of turning the minds of phenomenalists into useful and suggestive channels away from mere mediumistic dogmatism was the correct one.

What I meant by the "Forlorn Hope" was that when one regards the magnitude of the task to be undertaken by our theosophical volunteers, and especially the multitudinous agencies arrayed, and to be arrayed, in opposition, we may well compare it, to one of those desperate efforts against overwhelming odds that the true soldier glories to attempt. You have done well to see the "large purpose" in the small beginnings of the T.S. Of course, if we had undertaken to found and direct it inpropria persona very likely it would have accomplished more and made fewer mistakes, but we could not do this, nor was it the plan: our two agents are given the task and left — as you now are — to do the best they could under the circumstances. And much has been wrought. Under the surface of Spiritualism, runs a current that is wearing a broad channel for itself. When it reappears above ground its effects will be apparent. Already many minds like yours are pondering It is not quite accurate that by having such minds in the Society they would be "under conditions more favourable for observation" for us. Rather put it, that by the act of joining other sympathisers in this organization they are stimulated to effort and incite each other to investigate. Unity always gives strength: and since Occultism in our days resembles a "Forlorn Hope," union and co-operation are indispensable. Union does indeed imply a concentration of vital and magnetic force against the hostile currents of prejudice and fanaticism.

I wrote a few words in the Maratha boy's letter, only to show you that he was obeying orders in submitting his views to you. Apart from his exaggerated idea about huge fees, his letter is in a way worth considering. For Damodar is a Hindu — and knows the mind of his people at Bombay; though the Bombay Hindus are about as unspiritual a group as can be found in all India. But, like the devoted enthusiastic lad he is, he jumped after the misty form of his own ideas even before I could give them the right direction. All quick thinkers are hard to impress — in a flash they are out and away in "full cry," before half understanding what one wants to have them think. This is our trouble with both Mrs. B. and O. The frequent failure of the latter to carry out the suggestions he sometimes receives — even when written, is almost wholly due to his own active mentality preventing his distinguishing our impressions from his own conceptions. And Missus B.'s trouble is (apart from physical ailment) that she sometimes listens to two or more of our voices at once; e.g., this morning while the "Disinherited," whom I have accommodated with space for a footnote — was talking with her on an important matter, she lent an ear to one of ours, who is passing through Bombay from Cyprus, on his way to Thibet — and so got both in an inextricable confusion. Women do lack the power of concentration.

And now, my good friend and co-worker — an irremediable paperless condition obliges me to close. Farewell, until your return, unless you will be content, as hitherto, to pass our correspondence through the accustomed channel. Neither of us would prefer this. But until authority is given to change it must be even so. Were she to die to-day — and she is really sick — you would not receive more than two, or at most three more letters from me (through Damodar or Olcott, or through already established emergent agencies), and then, that reservoir of force being exhausted — our parting would be FINAL. However, I will not anticipate; events might bring us together somewhere in Europe. But whether we meet or not, during your trip, be assured that my personal good wishes will attend you. Should you actually need now and again the help of a happy thought as your work progresses, it may, very likely be, osmosed into your head — if sherry bars not the way, as it has already done at Allahabad.

May the "deep Sea" deal gently with you and your house.

Ever yours,

K. H.

P.S. — The "friend" of whom the Lord Lindsay speaks in his letter to you, is, I am sorry to say, a true skunk mephitis, who managed to perfume himself with ess-bouquet in his presence during their palmy days of friendship, and so avoided being recognised by his natural stench. It is Home — the medium, a convert to Roman Catholicism, then to Protestantism, and finally to the Greek Church. He is the bitterest and most cruel enemy O. and Mad. B. have, though he has never met either of them. For a certain time he succeeded in poisoning the Lord's mind, and prejudiced him against them. I do not like saying anything behind a man's back, for it looks like back-biting. Yet in view of some future events I feel it my duty to warn you, for this one is an exceptionally bad man — hated by the Spiritualists and mediums as much as he is despised by those  who have learned to know him. Yours is a work which clashes directly with his. Though a poor sickly cripple, a paralysed wretch, his mental faculties are as fresh and as alive as ever to mischief. He is no man to stop before a slanderous accusation — however vile and lying. So — beware.



Letter 9

Table of Contents


1. So, at least, Mrs. S. says; I myself did not search the crockery shops; so too, the bottle filled with water I filled with my own hand — was one of the four only that the servants had in the baskets, and these four bottles had but just been brought back empty by these peons from their fruitless search after water, when you sent them to the little brewery with a note. Hoping to be excused for the interference and with my most respectful regards to the lady.

Yours, etc.

THE "DISINHERITED" (return to text)

Letter No. 9

From K.H., first letter received on return to India, July 8th, 1881, while staying with Madame B. at

Bombay for a few days.

Welcome good friend and brilliant author, welcome back! Your letter at hand, and I am happy to see your personal experience with the "Elect" of London proved so successful. But, I foresee, that more than ever now, you will become an incarnate note of interrogation. Beware! If your questions are found premature by the powers that be, instead of receiving my answers in their pristine purity you may find them transformed into yards of drivel. I am too far gone to feel a hand on my throat whenever trenching on the limits of forbidden topics; not enough to avoid feeling myself — uncomfortably so — like a worm of yesterday before our "Rock of Ages," my Cho-Khan. We must all be blindfolded before we can pass onward; or else, we have to remain outside.

And now, what about the book? Le quart d'heure de Rabelais is striking, and finds me, if not quite insolvent, yet quasi-trembling at the idea that the first instalment offered may be found below the mark; the price claimed — inadequate with my poor resources; myself led pro bono publico to trespass beyond the terrible — "hitherto shalt thou go, and no further," and the angry wave of the Cho-Khan's wrath swamping me blue ink and all! I fondly hope you will not make me lose "my situation."

Quite so. For, I have a dim notion that you will be very impatient with me. I have a very clear notion that you need not be. It is one of the unfortunate necessities of life that imperial needs do sometimes force one apparently to ignore the claims of friendship, not to violate one's word, but to put off and lay aside for a while the too impatient expectations of neophytes as of inferior importance. One such need that I call imperial is the need of your future welfare; the realization of the dream dreamt by you in company with S.M. That dream — shall we call it a vision? — was, that you, and Mrs. K. — why forget the Theos. Soc.? — "are all parts of a large plan for the manifestations of occult philosophy to the world." Yes; the time must come, and it is not far — when all of you will comprehend aright the apparently contradictory phases of such manifestations; forced by the evidence to reconcile them. The case not being so at present, meanwhile — remember: it is because we are playing a risky game and the stakes are human souls that I ask you to possess yours in patience. Bearing in mind that I have to look after your "soul" and mine too, I propose to do so at whatever cost, even at the risk of being misunderstood by you as I was by Mr. Hume. The work is made the more difficult by my being a lonely labourer in the field, and that, as long as I fail to prove to my superiors that you, at least — mean business; that you — are in right good earnest. As I am refused higher help, so will you fail to easily find help in that Society in which you move, and which you try to move. Nor will you find, for a certain time much joy in those directly concerned. Our old lady is weak and her nerves are worked to a fiddle string; so is her jaded brain. H.S.O. is far away — in exile — fighting his way back to salvation — compromised more than you imagine by his Simla indiscretions — and establishing theosoph. schools. Mr. Hume — who once promised to become a champion fighter in that Battle of Light against Darkness — now preserves a kind of armed neutrality wondrous to behold. Having made the mirific discovery that we are a body of antidiluvian Jesuits of fossiles — self-crowned with oratorial flourishes, he rested but to accuse us of intercepting his letters to H.P.B.! However, he finds some comfort by thinking "what a jolly argument he shall have elsewhere (Angel Linnean ornithological Society, perhaps) with the entity which is represented by the name "Koothoomi." Verily has our very intellectual, once mutual friend, a flood of words at his command which would suffice to float a troop-ship of oratorious fallacies. Nevertheless — I respect him. . . . But who next? C. C. Massey? But then he is the hapless parent of about half a dozen of illegitimate brats. He is a most charming, devoted friend; a profound mystic; a generous, noble minded man, a gentleman — as they say — every inch of him; true as gold; every requisite for a student of occultism, but none for an adept, my good friend. Be it as it may, his secret is his own, and I have no right to divulge it. Dr. Wyld? — a christian to the back bone. Hood? — a sweet nature, as you say; a dreamer, and an idealist in mystic matters, yet — no worker. S. Moses? Ah! here we are. S.M. has nearly upset the theosoph. ark set afloat three years back: and, he will do his level best to do it over again -— our Imperator notwithstanding. You doubt? Listen.

His is a weird, rare nature. His occult psychical energies are tremendous; but they have lain dormant, folded up within him and unknown to himself, when, some eight years or so, Imperator threw his eye upon him and bid his spirit soar. Since then, a new life has been in him, a dual existence, but his nature could not be changed. Brought up as a theological student, his mind was devoured by doubts. Earlier, he betook himself to Mount Athos, where, immuring himself in a monastery, he studied Greek Eastern religion, and it is there that he was first noticed by his "Spirit guide" (!!) Of course, Greek casuistry failed to solve his doubts, and he hurried on to Rome, — popery satisfying him as little. From thence he wandered to Germany with the same negative results. Giving up dry christian theology he did not give up its presumable founder with all that. He needed an ideal and he found it in the latter. For him Jesus is a reality, a once embodied, now a disembodied Spirit, who, "furnished him with an evidence of his personal identity" — he thinks, — in no less a degree than other "Spirits" — Imperator among the rest — have. Nevertheless, neither the religions of Jesus nor yet his words, as recorded in the Bible and believed by S.M. authentic — are fully accepted by that restless Spirit of his. Imperator, on whom the same fate devolved later on, fares no better. His mind is too positive. Once impressed it becomes easier to efface characters engraved upon titanium than impressions made upon his brain.

Whenever under the influence of Imperator — he is all alive to the realities of Occultism, and the superiority of our Science over Spiritualism. As soon as left alone and under the pernicious guidance of those he firmly believes having identified with disembodied Souls — all becomes confusion again! His mind will yield to no suggestions, no reasonings but his own, and those are all for Spiritualistic theories. When the old theological fetters had dropped off, he imagined himself a free man. Some months later, he became the humble slave and tool of the "Spirits"! It is but when standing face to face with his inner Self that he realizes the truth that there is something higher and nobler than the prittle-prattle of pseudo Spirits. It was at such a moment that he heard for the first the voice of Imperator, and it was, as he himself puts it: "as the voice of God speaking to his inner Self." That voice has made itself familiar to him for years, and yet he very often heeds it not. A simple query: Were Imper. what he believes, nay — knows him to be, he thinks, — would not he have made S.M.'s will completely subservient to his own by this time? Alone the adepts, i.e. the embodied Spirits — are forbidden by our wise and intransgressible laws to completely subject to themselves another and a weaker will, — that of free born man. The latter mode of proceeding is the favourite one resorted to by the "Brothers of the Shadow," the Sorcerers, the Elementary Spooks, and, as an isolated exception — by the highest Planetary Spirits, those, who can no longer err. But these appear on Earth but at the origin of every new humankind; at the junction of, and close of the two ends of the great cycle. And, they remain with man no longer than the time required for the eternal truths they teach to impress themselves so forcibly upon the plastic minds of the new races as to warrant them from being lost or entirely forgotten in ages hereafter, by the forthcoming generations. The mission of the planetary Spirit is but to strike the KEY NOTE OF TRUTH. Once he has directed the vibration of the latter to run its course uninterruptedly along the catenation of that race and to the end of the cycle — the denizen of the highest inhabited sphere disappears from the surface of our planet — till the following "resurrection of flesh." The vibrations of the Primitive Truth are what your philosophers name "innate ideas."

Imperator, then, had repeatedly told him that "in occultism alone he should seek for, and will find a phase of truth not yet known to him." But that did not prevent S.M. at all from turning his back upon occultism whenever a theory of it clashed with one of his own preconceived Spiritualistic ideas. To him mediumship appeared as the Charter of his Soul's freedom, as resurrection from Spiritual death. He had been allowed to enjoy it only so far as it was necessary for the confirmation of his faith; promised that the abnormal would yield to the normal; ordered to prepare for the time when the Self within him will become conscious of its spiritual, independent existence, will act and talk face to face with its Instructor, and will lead its life in Spiritual Spheres normally and without external or internal mediumship at all. And yet once conscious of what he terms "external Spirit action" he recognized no more hallucination from truth, the false from the real: confounding at times Elementals and Elementaries, embodied from disembodied Spirit, though he had been oft enough told of, and warned against "those spirits that hover about the Earth's sphere" — by his "Voice of God." With all that he firmly believes to have invariably acted under Imper.'s direction, and that such spirits as have come to him came by his "guide's" permission. In such a case H.P.B. was there by Imper.'s consent? And how do you reconcile the following contradictions. Ever since 1876, acting under direct orders, she tried to awake him to the reality of what was going on around and in him. That she must have acted either according to or against Imper.'s will — he must know, as in the latter case she might boast of being stronger, more powerful than his "guide" who never yet protested against the intrusion. Now what happens? Writing to her from Isle of Wight, in 1876, of a vision lasting for over 48 consecutive hours he had, and during which he walked about, talked as usual, but did not preserve the slightest remembrance of anything external, he asks her to tell him whether it was a vision or a hallucination. Why did he not ask + I-r? "You can tell me for you were there," he says. . . . "You — changed, yet yourself — if you have a Self. . . . I suppose you have, but into that I do not pry." . . . At another time he saw her in his own library looking at him, approaching and giving him some masonic signs of the Lodge he knows. He admits that he "saw her as clearly as he saw Massey — who was there." He saw her on several other occasions, and sometimes knowing it was H.P.B. he could not recognize her. "You seem to me from your appearance as from your letters so different at times, the mental attitudes so various, that it is quite conceivable to me, as I am authoritatively told, that you are a bundle of Entities. . . . I have absolute faith in you." In every letter of his he clamoured for a "living Brother" to her unequivocal statement that there was one already having charge of him, he strongly objected. When helped to get free from his too material body, absent from it for hours and days sometimes his empty machine run during that period from afar and by external, living influence, — as soon as back, he would begin labouring under the irradicable impression of having been all that time the vehicle for another intelligence, a disembodied not embodied Spirit, truth never once flashing across his mind. "Imperator," he wrote to her, "traverses your idea about mediumship. He says there should be no real antagonism between the medium and the adept." Had he used the word "Seer" instead of "medium" the idea would have been rendered more correctly, for a man becomes rarely an adept without being born a natural Seer. Then again. In September, 1875, he knew nothing of the Brothers of the Shadow — our greatest, most cruel, and — why not confess — our most potential Enemies. In that year he actually asked the old lady whether Bulwer had been eating underdone pork chops and dreaming when he described "that hideous Dweller of the Threshold." "Make yourself ready," she answered — "in about twelve months more you will have to face and fight with them." In October, 1876, they had begun their work upon him. "I am fighting" — he wrote — "a hand to hand battle with all the legions of the Fiend for the past three weeks. My nights are made hideous with their torments, temptations and foul suggestions. I see them all around, glaring at me, gabbling, howling, grinning! Every form of filthy suggestion, of bewildering doubt, of mad and shuddering fear is upon me . . . I can understand Zanoni's Dweller now . . . I have not wavered yet . . . and their temptations are fainter, the presence less near, the horror less. . . ."

One night she had prostrated herself before her Superior, one of the few they fear, praying him to wave his hand across the ocean, lest S.M. should die, and the Theos. Soc. lose its best subject. "He must be tried" was the answer. He imagines that + Imper. had sent the tempters because he S.M. was one of those Thomases who must see; he would not believe that + could not help their coming. Watch over him he did — he could not drive them away unless the victim, the neophyte himself, proved the strongest. But did these human fiends in league with the Elementaries prepare him for a new life as be thought they would? Embodiments of those adverse influences which beset the inner Self struggling to be free and to progress, they would never have returned had he successfully conquered them by asserting his own independent WILL, by giving up his mediumship, his passive will. Yet they did.

You say of + — "Imperator — is certainly not his (S.M.'s) astral soul, and assuredly, also, he is not from a lower World than our own — not an earth-bound Spirit." No one ever said he was anything of the kind.

H.P.B. never told you he was S.M.'s astral soul, but that what he often mistook for + was his own higher Self, his divine atman — not linga Sarira or astral Soul, or the Kama rupa the independent doppelganger — again.

+ cannot contradict himself; + cannot be ignorant of the truth, so often misrepresented by S.M.; + cannot preach the occult Sciences and then defend mediumship, not even in that highest form described by his pupil. Mediumship is abnormal. When in further development the abnormal has given way to the natural, the controls are shaken off, and passive obedience is no longer required, then the medium learns to use his will, to exercise his own power, and becomes an adept. The process is one of development and the neophyte has to go to the end. As long as he is subject to occasional trance — he cannot be an adept. S.M. passes the two-thirds of his life in Trance.

To your question — Is Imperator "a Planetary Spirit" and "may a Planetary Spirit have been humanly incarnated," I will first say that there can be no planetary Spirit that was not once material or what you call human. When our great Buddha — the patron of all the adepts, the reformer and the codifier of the occult system, reached first Nirvana on earth, he became a Planetary Spirit; i.e. — his spirit could at one and the same time rove the interstellar spaces in full consciousness, and continue at will on Earth in his original and individual body. For the divine Self had so completely disfranchised itself from matter that it could create at will an inner substitute for itself, and leaving it in the human form for days, weeks, sometimes years, affect in no wise by the change either the vital principle or the physical mind of its body. By the way, that is the highest form of adeptship man can hope for on our planet. But it is as rare as the Buddhas themselves, the last Khobilgan who reached it being Sang-Ko-Pa of Kokonor (XIV Century), the reformer of esoteric as well as of vulgar Lamaism. Many are those who "break through the egg-shell," few who, once out are able to exercise their Nirira namastaka fully, when completely out of the body. Conscious life in Spirit is as difficult for some natures as swimming is for some bodies. Though the human frame is lighter in its bulk than water, and that every person is born with the faculty, so few develop in themselves the art of treading water that death by drowning is the most frequent of accidents. The planetary Spirit of that kind (the Buddha like) can pass at will into other bodies — of more or less etherialized matter, inhabiting other regions of the Universe. There are many other grades and orders, but there is no separate and eternally constituted order of Planetary Spirits. Whether Imperator is a "planetary" embodied or disembodied, whether he is an adept in flesh or out of it, I am not at liberty to say, any more than he would himself to tell S.M. who I am, or may be, or even who H.P.B. is. If he himself chooses to be silent on that subject S.M. has no right to ask me. But then our friend, S.M. ought to know. Nay: he firmly believes he does. For in his intercourse with that personage there came a time when not satisfied with + assurances, or content to respect his wishes that he, Imperator & Co. should remain impersonal and unknown save by their assumed titles, S.M. wrestled with him, Jacob-like, for months on the point of that spirit's identity. It was the Biblical flim-flam all over again. "I pray thee tell me thy name" — and though answered: "Wherefore is it that thou dost ask after my name?" — what's in a name? — he allowed S.M. to label him like a portmanteau. And so, he is at rest now, for he has "seen God face to face"; who, after wrestling, and seeing that he prevailed not, said "Let me go" and was forced to come to the terms offered by Jacob S. Moses. I strongly advise you for your own information to put that question to your friend. Why should he be "anxiously awaiting" my reply, since he knows all about + ? Did not that "Spirit" tell him a story one day, — a queer story, something what he may not divulge about himself and forbid him ever mentioning it? What more does he want? That fact, that he seeks to learn through me the true nature of +, is a pretty good proof in itself that he is not as sure of his identity as he believes he is, or rather would make believe he is. Or is the question a blind? — which?

I may answer you, what I said to G. {T}. Fechner one day, when he wanted to know the Hindu view on what he had written — "You are right; . . . 'every diamond, every crystal, every plant and star has its own individual soul, besides man and animal . . .' and, 'there is a hierarchy of souls from the lowest forms of matter up to the World-Soul' . . .; but, you are mistaken when adding to the above the assurance that 'the spirits of the departed hold direct psychic communication with Souls that are still connected with a human body' — for, they do not." The relative position of the inhabited worlds in our Solar System would alone preclude such a possibility. For I trust you have given up the queer idea — a natural result of early Xtian training — that there can possibly be human intelligences inhabiting purely Spiritual regions? You will then as readily understand the fallacy of the christians — who would burn immaterial Souls in a material physical hell — as the mistake of the more educated Spiritualists, who lullaby themselves with the thought that any other but the denizens of the two worlds immediately interlinked with our own can possibly communicate with them? However etherial and purified of gross matter they may be, the pure Spirits are still subject to the physical and universal laws of matter. They cannot if even they would span the abyss that separates their worlds from ours. They can be visited in Spirit, their Spirit cannot descend and reach us. They attract, they cannot be attracted, their Spiritual polarity being an insuperable difficulty in the way. (By-the-bye you must not trust Isis literally. The book is but a tentative effort to divert the attention of the Spiritualists from their preconceptions to the true state of things. The author was made to hint and point out in the true direction, to say what things are not, not what they are. Proof reader helping, a few real mistakes have crept in as on page 1, chapter 1, volume 1, where divine Essence is made emanating from Adam instead of the reverse.)

Once fairly started upon that subject, I will endeavour to explain to you still clearer where lies the impossibility. You will thus be answered in regard to both Planetary Spirits and — seance room "Spirits."

The cycle of intelligent existences commences at the highest worlds or planets — the term "highest" meaning here the most spiritually perfect. Evoluting from cosmic matter — which is akasa, the primeval not the secondary plastic medium, or Ether of Science instinctively suspected, unproven as the rest — man first evolutes from this matter in its most sublimated state, appearing at the threshold of Eternity as a perfectly Etherial — not Spiritual Entity, say — a Planetary Spirit. He is but one remove from the universal and Spiritual World Essence — the Anima Mundi of the Greeks, or that which humanity in its spiritual decadence has degraded into a mythical personal God. Hence, at that stage, the Spirit — man is at best an active Power, an immutable, therefore an unthinking Principle (the term "immutable" being again used here but to denote that state for the time being, the immutability applying here but to the inner principle which will vanish and disappear as soon as the speck of the material in him will start on its cyclic work of Evolution and transformation). In his subsequent descent, and in proportion of the increase of matter he will assert more and more his activity. Now, the congeries of the star-worlds (including our own planet) inhabited by intelligent beings may be likened to an orb or rather an epicycloid formed of rings like a chain — worlds inter-linked together, the totality representing an imaginary endless ring, or circle. The progress of man throughout the whole — from its starting to its closing points meeting on the highest point of its circumference — is what we call the Maha Yug or Great Cycle, the Kuklos, whose head is lost in a crown of absolute Spirit, and its lowest point of circumference in absolute matter — to viz.: the point of cessation of action of the active principle. If using a more familiar term we call the great cycle the Macrokosm and its component parts or the interlinked star worlds Microkosms, the occultists' meaning in representing each of the latter as perfect copies of the former will become evident. The great is the Prototype of the smaller cycles: and as such, each star world has in its turn its own cycle of Evolution which starts with a purer and ends with a grosser or more material nature. As they descend, each world presents itself naturally more and more shadowy, becoming at the "antipodes" absolute matter. Propelled by the irresistible cyclic impulse the Planetary Spirit has to descend before he can reascend. On his way he has to pass through the whole ladder of Evolution, missing no rung, to halt at every star world as he would at a station; and, besides the unavoidable cycle of that particular and every respective star world to perform in it his own "life-cycle" to, viz.: returning and reincarnating as many times as he fails to complete his round of life in it, as he dies on it before reaching the age of reason as correctly stated in Isis. Thus far Mrs. Kingsford's idea that the human Ego is being reincarnated in several successive human bodies is the true one. As to its being reborn in animal forms after human incarnation it is the result of her loose way of expressing things and ideas. Another, WOMAN — all over again. Why, she confounds "Soul and Spirit," refuses to discriminate between the animal and the Spiritual Egos the Jiv-atma (or Linga-Sharir) and the Kama-Rupa (or Atma-rupa), two as different things as body and mind, and — mind and thought are! That is what happens. After circling, so to say, along the arc of the cycle, circling along and within it (the daily and yearly rotation of the Earth is as good an illustration as any) when the Spirit-man reaches our planet, which is one of the lowest, having lost at every station some of the etherial and acquired an increase of material nature, both spirit and matter have become pretty much equilibrized in him. But then, he has the Earth's cycle to perform; and, as in the process of involution and evolution downward, matter is ever striving to stifle Spirit, when arrived to the lowest point of his pilgrimage, the once pure Planetary Spirit will be found dwindled to — what Science agrees to call a primitive or Primordial man — amidst a nature as primordial — speaking geologically, for physical nature keeps pace with the physiological as well as the Spiritual man, in her cyclic career. At that point the great Law begins its work of selection. Matter found entirely divorced from Spirit is thrown over into the still lower worlds — into the sixth "GATE" or "way of rebirth" of the vegetable and mineral worlds, and of the primitive animal forms. From thence, matter ground over in the work-shop of nature proceeds soulless back to its Mother-Fount; while the Egos purified of their dross are enabled to resume their progress once more onward. It is here, then, that the laggard Egos perish by the millions. It is the solemn moment of the "survival of the fittest," the annihilation of those unfit. It is but matter (or material man) which is compelled by its own weight to descend to the very bottom of the "circle of necessity" to there assume animal form; as to the winner of that race throughout the worlds — the Spiritual Ego, he will ascend from star to star, from one world to another, circling onward to rebecome the once pure planetary Spirit, then higher still, to finally reach its first starting point, and from thence — to merge into MYSTERY. No adept has ever penetrated beyond the veil of primitive Kosmic matter. The highest, the most perfect vision is limited to the universe of Form and Matter.

But my explanation does not end here. You want to know why it is deemed supremely difficult if not utterly impossible for pure disembodied Spirits to communicate with men through mediums or Phantomosophy. I say, because

(a) On account of the antagonistic atmospheres respectively surrounding these worlds;

(b) Of the entire dissimilarity of physiological and spiritual conditions; and

(c) Because that chain of worlds I have just been telling you about, is not only an epicycloid but an elliptical orbit of existences, having, as every ellipse, not one but two points — two foci, which can never approach each other; man being at one focus of it and pure Spirit at the other.

To this you might object. I can neither help it, nor change the fact, but there is still another and far mightier impediment. Like a rosary composed of white and black beads alternating with each other, so that concatenation of worlds is made up of worlds of CAUSES and worlds of EFFECTS, the latter — the direct result produced by the former. Thus it becomes evident that every sphere of Causes — and our Earth is one — is not only interlinked with, and surrounded by, but actually separated from its nearest neighbor — the higher sphere of Causality — by an impenetrable atmosphere (in its spiritual sense) of effects bordering on, and even interlinking — never mixing with the next sphere: for one is active, the other — passive, the world of causes positive, that of effects — negative. This passive resistance can be overcome but under conditions, of which your most learned Spiritualists have not the faintest idea. All movement is, so to say polar. It is very difficult to convey my meaning to you at this point; but I will go to the end. I am aware of my failure to bring before you these — to us — axiomatical truths — in any other form but that of a simple logical postulate — if so much — they being capable of absolute and unequivocal demonstration, but to the highest Seers. But, I'll give you food for thinking if nothing else.

The intermediary spheres, being but the projected shadows of the Worlds of Causes — are negatived by the last. They are the great halting places, the stations in which the new Self-conscious Egos to be — the self-begotten progeny of the old and disembodied Egos of our planet — are gestated. Before the new phoenix, reborn of the ashes of its parents can soar higher, to a better, more spiritual, and perfect world — still a world of matter — it has to pass through the process of a new birth, so to say; and, as on our earth, where the two-thirds of infants are either stillborn or die in infancy, so in our "world of effects." On earth it is the physiological and mental defects, the sins of the progenitors which are visited upon the issue: in that land of shadows, the new and yet unconscious Ego-foetus becomes the just victim of the transgressions of its old Self, whose Karma — merit and demerit — will alone weave out its future destiny. In that world, my good friend, we find but unconscious, self-acting, ex-human machines, souls in their transition state, whose dormant faculties and individuality lie as a butterfly in its chrysalis; and Spiritualists would yet have them talk sense! Caught at times, into the vortex of the abnormal "mediumistic" current, they become the unconscious echoes of thoughts and ideas crystallized around those present. Every positive, well-directed mind is capable of neutralizing such secondary effects in a seance room. The world below ours is worse yet. The former is harmless at least; it is more sinned against by being disturbed, than sinning; the latter allowing the retention of full consciousness as being a hundred-fold more material is positively dangerous. The notions of hells and purgatory, of paradises and resurrections are all caricatured, distorted echoes of the primeval, one Truth taught humanity in the infancy of its races by every First Messenger — the Planetary Spirit mentioned on the reverse of page the third — and whose remembrance lingered in the memory of man as Elu of the Chaldees, Osiris the Egyptian, Vishnu, the first Buddhas and so on.

The lower world of effects is the sphere of such distorted Thoughts; of the most sensual conceptions, and pictures; of anthropomorphic deities, the out-creations of their creators, the sensual human minds of people who have never outgrown their brutehood on earth. Remembering thoughts are things — have tenacity, coherence, and life, — that they are real entities — the rest will become plain. Disembodied — the creator is attracted naturally to its creation and creatures; sucked in — by the Maelstrom dug out by his own hands. . . . But I must pause, for volumes would hardly suffice to explain all that was said by me in this letter.

In reference to your wonder that the views of the three mystics "are far from being identical," what does the fact prove? Were they instructed by disembodied, pure, and wise Spirits — even by those of one remove from our earth on the higher plane — would not the teachings be identical? The question arising: "May not Spirits as well as men differ in ideas?" Well, then their teaching — aye, of the highest of them since they are the "guides" of the three great London Seers — will not be more authoritative than those of mortal men. "But, they may belong to different spheres?" Well; if in the different spheres contradictory doctrines are propounded, these doctrines cannot contain the Truth, for Truth is One, and cannot admit of diametrically opposite views; and pure Spirits who see it as it is, with the veil of matter entirely withdrawn from it — cannot err. Now, if we allow of different aspects or portions of the Whole Truth being visible to different agencies or intelligences, each under various conditions, as for example various portions of the one landscape develope themselves to various persons, at various distances and from various standpoints — if we admit the fact of various or different agencies (individual Brothers for instance) endeavouring to develope the Egos of different individuals, without subjecting entirely their wills to their own (as it is forbidden) but by availing themselves of their physical, moral, and intellectual idiosyncracies; if we add to this the countless kosmical influences which distort and deflect all efforts to achieve definite purposes: if we remember, moreover, the direct hostility of the Brethren of the Shadow always on the watch to perplex and haze the neophyte's brain, I think we shall have no difficulty in understanding how even a definite spiritual advance may to a certain extent lead different individuals to apparently different conclusions and theories.

Having confessed to you that I had no right to interfere with Imperator's secrets and plans, I must say that so far, however, he has proved the wisest of us. Had our policy been the same, had I, for instance allowed you to infer and then believe (without stating anything positive myself) that I was a "disembodied angel" — a Spirit of pellucid electroidal essence, from the Superstellar phantasmatical zone — we would both be happier. You

— you would not have worried your head as to "whether agencies of that sort will always remain necessary" and I — would not find myself under the disagreeable necessity of having to refuse a friend a "personal interview and direct communication." You might have implicitly believed anything coming from me; and I would have felt less responsible for you before my "GUIDES." However, time will show what may or may not be done in that direction. The book is out, and we have to patiently wait for the results of that first serious shot at the enemy. Art Magic and Isis emanating from women, and as it was believed, Spiritualists — could never hope for a serious hearing. Its effects will at first be disastrous enough, for the gun will recoil and the shot rebounding will strike the author and his humble hero, who are not likely to flinch. But it will also graze the old lady, reviving in the Anglo-Indian press last year's outcry. The Thersites and literary Philistines will go hard to work, the flings, squibs and coups de bec falling thick upon her — though aimed at you alone, as the Editor of the Pioneer is far from being beloved by his colleagues of India. Spiritualistic papers have already opened the campaign in London and the Yankee editors of the organs of "Angels" will follow suit, the heavenly "controls" ejaculating their choicest scandalum magnatum. Some men of science — least of all their admirers — the parasites who bask in the sun and dream they are themselves that sun — are not likely to forgive you the sentence — really much too flattering — which ranges the comprehension of a poor, unknown Hindoo "so far beyond the science and philosophy of Europe, that only the broadest-minded representatives of either will be able to realise the existence of such powers in man, etc." But what of that? It was all foreseen and was to be expected. When the first hum and ding-dong of adverse criticism is hushed, thoughtful men will read and ponder over the book, as they have never pondered over the most scientific efforts of Wallace and Crookes to reconcile modern science with Spirits, and — the little seed will grow and thrive.


In the meantime I do not forget my promises to you. As soon as installed in your sleeping chamber I will try and. . . . [Here three lines in the original letter have been completely erased apparently by the writer thereof.


— ED]. I hope to be permitted to do so much for you. If, for generations we have "shut out the world from the Knowledge of our Knowledge," it is on account of its absolute unfitness; and if, notwithstanding proofs given, it still refuses yielding to evidence, then will we at the End of this cycle retire into solitude and our kingdom of silence once more. . . . We have offered to exhume the primeval strata of man's being, his basic nature, and lay bare the wonderful complications of his inner Self — something never to be achieved by physiology or even psychology in its ultimate expression — and demonstrate it scientifically. It matters not to them, if the excavations be so deep, the rocks so rough and sharp, that in diving into that, to them, fathomless ocean, most of us perish in the dangerous exploration; for it is we who were the divers and the pioneers and the men of science have but to reap where we have sown. It is our mission to plunge and bring the pearls of Truth to the surface; theirs — to clean and set them into scientific jewels. And, if they refuse to touch the ill­shapen, oyster shell, insisting that there is, nor cannot be any precious pearl inside it, then shall we once more wash our hands of any responsibility before humankind. For countless generations hath the adept builded a fane of imperishable rocks, a giant's Tower of INFINITE THOUGHT, wherein the Titan dwelt, and will yet, if need be, dwell alone, emerging from it but at the end of every cycle, to invite the elect of mankind to cooperate with him and help in his turn enlighten superstitious man. And we will go on in that periodical work of ours; we will not allow ourselves to be baffled in our philanthropic attempts until that day when the foundations of a new continent of thought are so firmly built that no amount of opposition and ignorant malice guided by the Brethren of the Shadow will be found to prevail.


But until that day of final triumph someone has to be sacrificed — though we accept but voluntary victims. The ungrateful task did lay her low and desolate in the ruins of misery, misapprehension, and isolation: but she will have her reward in the hereafter for we never were ungrateful. As regards the Adept — not one of my kind, good friend, but far higher — you might have closed your book with those lines of Tennyson's "Wakeful Dreamer" — you knew him not —

"How could ye know him? Ye were yet within The narrower circle; he had well-nigh reached The last, which, with a region of white flame, Pure, without heat, into a larger air Up-burning, and an ether of black blue, Investeth and ingirds all other lives. . . ."

I'll close. Remember then on the 17th of July and. . . . [Here again seven lines in the original have been deleted. — ED.] . . . ., to you will become the sublimest of realities. Farewell.

Sincerely yours,

K. H.

Letter 10 Table of Contents

Letter No. 10

(Transcribed from a copy in Mr. Sinnett's handwriting. — Ed)


Received at Simla, 1881-? '82 {Aug-Sep ’82}.

{Hume's article appeared in the November Theosophist.}

Neither our philosophy nor ourselves believe in a God, least of all in one whose pronoun necessitates a capital H. Our philosophy falls under the definition of Hobbes. It is preeminently the science of effects by their causes, and of causes by their effects, and since it is also the science of things deduced from first principle, as Bacon defines it, before we admit any such principle we must know it, and have no right to admit even its possibility. Your whole explanation is based upon one solitary admission made simply for argument's sake in October last. You were told that our knowledge was limited to this our solar system: ergo as philosophers who desired to remain worthy of the name we could not either deny or affirm the existence of what you termed a supreme, omnipotent, intelligent being of some sort beyond the limits of that solar system. But if such an existence is not absolutely impossible, yet unless the uniformity of Nnature's law breaks at those limits we maintain that it is highly improbable. Nevertheless we deny most emphatically the position of agnosticism in this direction, and as regards the solar system. Our doctrine knows no compromises. It either affirms or denies, for it never teaches but that which it knows to be the truth. Therefore, we deny God both as philosophers and as Buddhists. We know there are planetary and other spiritual lives, and we know there is in our system no such thing as God, either personal or impersonal. Parabrahm is not a God, but absolute immutable law, and Iswar is the effect of Avidya and Maya, ignorance based upon the great delusion. The word God was invented to designate the unknown cause of those effects which man has either admired or dreaded without understanding them, and since we claim and that we are able to prove what we claim — i.e. the knowledge of that cause and causes we are in a position to maintain there is no God or Gods behind them.

The idea of God is not an innate but an acquired notion, and we have but one thing in common with theologies — we reveal the infinite. But while we assign to all the phenomena that proceed from the infinite and limitless Space, Duration and motion, material, natural, sensible and known (to us at least) causes, the theists assign them spiritual, super-natural and unintelligible an unknown causes. The God of the Theologians is simply and imaginary power, un loup garou as d'Holbach expressed it — a power which has never yet manifested itself. Our chief aim is to deliver humanity of this nightmare, to teach man virtue for its own sake, and to walk in life relying on himself instead of leaning on a theological crutch, that for countless ages was the direct cause of nearly all human misery. Pantheistic we may be called — agnostic NEVER. If people are willing to accept and to regard as God our ONE LIFE immutable and unconscious in its eternity they may do so and thus keep to one more gigantic misnomer. But then they will have to say with Spinoza that there is not and that we cannot conceive any other substance than God; or as that famous and unfortunate philosopher says in his fourteenth proposition, "Praeter Deum nulla dari neque concipi potest substantia" — and thus become Pantheists . . . . who but a Theologian nursed on mystery and the most absurd supernaturalism can imagine a self existent being of necessity infinite and omnipresent outside the manifested boundless universe. The word infinite is but a negative which excludes the idea of bounds. It is evident that a being independent and omnipresent cannot be limited by anything which is outside of himself; that there can be nothing exterior to himself — not even vacuum, then where is there room for matter? for that manifested universe even though the latter limited. If we ask the theist is your God vacuum, space or matter, they will reply no. And yet they hold that their God penetrates matter though he is not himself matter. When we speak of our One Life we also say that it penetrates, nay is the essence of every atom of matter; and that therefore it not only has correspondence with matter but has all its properties likewise, etc. — hence is material, is matter itself. How can intelligence proceed or emanate from non-intelligence — you kept asking last year. How could a highly intelligent humanity, man the crown of reason, be evolved out of blind unintelligent law or force! But once we reason on that line, I may ask in my turn, how could congenital idiots, non-reasoning animals, and the rest of "creation" have been created by or evoluted from, absolute Wisdom, if the latter is a thinking intelligent being, the author and ruler of the Universe? How? says Dr. Clarke in his examination of the proof of the existence of the Divinity. "God who hath made the eye, shall he not see? God who hath made the ear shall he not hear?" But according to this mode of reasoning they would have to admit that in creating an idiot God is an idiot; that he who made so many irrational beings, so many physical and moral monsters, must be an irrational being. . . .

. . . We are not Adwaitees, but our teaching respecting the one life is identical with that of the Adwaitee with regard to Parabrahm. And no true philosophically trained Adwaitee will ever call himself an agnostic, for he knows that he is Parabrahm and identical in every respect with the universal life and soul — the macrocosm is the microcosm and he knows that there is no God apart from himself, no creator as no being. Having found Gnosis we cannot turn our backs on it and become agnostics.

. . . . Were we to admit that even the highest Dyan Chohans are liable to err under a delusion, then there would be no reality for us indeed and the occult sciences would be as great a chimera as that God. If there is an absurdity in denying that which we do not know it is still more extravagant to assign to it unknown laws.

According to logic "nothing" is that of which everything can truly be denied and nothing can truly be affirmed. The idea therefore either of a finite or infinite nothing is a contradiction in terms. And yet according to theologians "God, the self existent being, is a most simple, unchangeable, incorruptible being; without parts, figure, motion, divisibility, or any other such properties as we find in matter. For all such things do plainly and necessarily imply finiteness in their very notion and are utterly inconsistent with complete infinity." Therefore the God here offered to the adoration of the XIXth century lacks every quality upon which man's mind is capable of fixing any judgment. What is this in fact but a being of whom they can affirm nothing that is not instantly contradicted. Their own Bible their Revelation destroys all the moral perceptions they heap upon him, unless indeed they call those qualities perfections that every other man's reason and common sense call imperfections, odious vices and brutal wickedness. Nay more he who reads our Buddhist scriptures written for the superstitious masses will fail to find in them a demon so vindictive, unjust, so cruel and so stupid as the celestial tyrant upon whom the Christians prodigally lavish their servile worship and on whom their theologians heap those perfections that are contradicted on every page of their bible. Truly and veritably your theology has created her God but to destroy him piecemeal. Your church is the fabulous Saturn, who begets children but to devour them.

(THE UNIVERSAL MIND) — A few reflections and arguments ought to support every new idea. For instance we are sure to be taken to task for the following apparent contradictions. (1) We deny the existence of a thinking conscious God, on the grounds that such a God must either be conditioned, limited and subject to change, therefore not infinite, or (2) if he is represented to us as an eternal unchangeable and independent being, with not a particle of matter in him, then we answer that it is no being but an immutable blind principle, a law. And yet, they will say, we believe in Dyans, or Planetaries ("spirits" also), and endow them with a universal mind, and this must be explained.

Our reasons may be briefly summed up thus:


(1) We deny the absurd proposition that there can be, even in a boundless and eternal universe — two infinite eternal and omni-present existences.


(2) Matter we know to be eternal, i.e., having had no beginning (a) because matter is Nature herself (b) because that which cannot annihilate itself and is indestructible exists necessarily — and therefore it could not begin to be, nor can it cease to be (c) because the accumulated experience of countless ages, and that of exact science show to us matter (or nature) acting by her own peculiar energy, of which not an atom is ever in an absolute state of rest, and therefore it must have always existed, i.e., its materials ever changing form, combinations and properties, but its principles or elements being absolutely indestructible.


(3) As to God — since no one has ever or at any time seen him or it — unless he or it is the very essence and nature of this boundless eternal matter, its energy and motion, we cannot regard him as either eternal or infinite or yet self existing. We refuse to admit a being or an existence of which we know absolutely nothing; because (a) there is no room for him in the presence of that matter whose undeniable properties and qualities we know thoroughly well (b) because if he or it is but a part of that matter it is ridiculous to maintain that he is the mover and ruler of that of which he is but a dependent part and (c) because if they tell us that God is a self existent pure spirit independent of matter — an extra-cosmic deity, we answer that admitting even the possibility of such an impossibility, i.e., his existence, we yet hold that a purely immaterial spirit cannot be an intelligent conscious ruler nor can he have any of the attributes bestowed upon him by theology and thus such a God becomes again but a blind force. Intelligence as found in our Dyan Chohans, is a faculty that can appertain but to organized or animated being — however imponderable or rather invisible the materials of their organizations. Intelligence requires the necessity of thinking; to think one must have ideas; ideas suppose senses which are physical material, and how can anything material belong to pure spirit? If it be objected that thought cannot be a property of matter, we will ask the reason why? We must have an unanswerable proof of this assumption, before we can accept it. Of the theologian we would enquire what was there to prevent his God, since he is the alleged creator of all — to endow matter with the faculty of thought; and when answered that evidently it has not pleased Him to do so, that it is a mystery as well as an impossibility, we would insist upon being told why it is more impossible that matter should produce spirit and thought, than that spirit or the thought of God should produce and create matter.

We do not bow our heads in the dust before the mystery of mind — for we have solved it ages ago. Rejecting with contempt the theistic theory we reject as much the automaton theory, teaching that states of consciousness are produced by the marshalling of the molecules of the brain; and we feel as little respect for that other hypothesis — the production of molecular motion by consciousness. Then what do we believe in? Well, we believe in the much laughed at phlogiston (see article "What is force and what is matter?" Theosophist, September), and in what some natural philosophers would call nisus the incessant though perfectly imperceptible (to the ordinary senses) motion or efforts one body is making on another — the pulsations of inert matter — its life. The bodies of the Planetary spirits are formed of that which Priestley and others called phlogiston and for which we have another name — this essence in its highest seventh state forming that matter of which the organisms of the highest and purest Dyans are composed, and in its lowest or densest form (so impalpable yet that science calls it energy and force) serving as a cover to the Planetaries of the 1st or lowest degree. In other words we believe in MATTER alone, in matter as visible nature and matter in its invisibility as the invisible omnipresent omnipotent Proteus with its unceasing motion which is its life, and which Nature draws from herself since she is the great whole outside of which nothing can exist. For as Bellinger truly asserts "motion is a manner of existence that flows necessarily out of the essence of matter; that matter moves by its own peculiar energies; that its motion is due to the force which is inherent in itself; that the variety of motion and the phenomena that result proceed from the diversity of the properties of the qualities and of the combinations which are originally found in the primitive matter" of which nature is the assemblage and of which your science knows less than one of our Tibetan Yak-drivers of Kant's metaphysics.

The existence of matter then is a fact; the existence of motion is another fact, their self existence and eternity or indestructibility is a third fact. And the idea of pure spirit as a Being or an Existence — give it whatever name you will — is a chimera, a gigantic absurdity.

OUR IDEAS ON EVIL — Evil has no existence per se and is but the absence of good and exists but for him who is made its victim. It proceeds from two causes, and no more than good is it an independent cause in Nature. Nature is destitute of goodness or malice; she follows only immutable laws when she either gives life and joy, or sends suffering [and] death, and destroys what she has created. Nature has an antidote for every poison and her

laws a reward for every suffering. The butterfly devoured by a bird becomes that bird, and the little bird killed by an animal goes into a higher form. It is the blind law of necessity and the eternal fitness of things, and hence cannot be called Evil in Nature. The real evil proceeds from human intelligence and its origin rests entirely with reasoning man who dissociates himself from Nature. Humanity then alone is the true source of evil. Evil is the exaggeration of good, the progeny of human selfishness and greediness. Think profoundly and you will find that save death — which is no evil but a necessary law, and accidents which will always find their reward in a future life — the origin of every evil whether small or great is in human action, in man whose intelligence makes him the one free agent in Nature. It is not nature that creates diseases, but man. The latter's mission and destiny in the economy of nature is to die his natural death brought by old age. Save accident, neither a savage nor a wild (free) animal die of disease. Food, sexual relations, drink, are all natural necessities of life; yet excess in them brings on disease, misery, suffering, mental and physical, and the latter are transmitted as the greatest evils to future generations, the progeny of the culprits. Ambition, the desire of securing happiness and comfort for those we love, by obtaining honours and riches, are praiseworthy natural feelings but when they transform man into an ambitious cruel tyrant, a miser, a selfish egotist they bring untold misery on those around him, on nations as well as on individuals. All this then — food, wealth, ambition, and a thousand other things we have to leave unmentioned — becomes the source and cause of evil whether in its abundance or through its absence. Become a glutton, a debauchee, a tyrant, and you become the originator of diseases, of human suffering and misery. Lack all this and you starve, you are despised as a nobody and the majority of the herd, your fellow men, make of you a sufferer your whole life. Therefore it is neither nature nor an imaginary Deity that has to be blamed, but human nature made vile by selfishness.

Think well over these few words; work out every cause of evil you can think of and trace it to its origin and you will have solved one-third of the problem of evil. And now, after making due allowance for evils that are natural and cannot be avoided, — and so few are they that I challenge the whole host of Western metaphysicians to call them evils or to trace them directly to an independent cause — I will point out the greatest, the chief cause of nearly two thirds of the evils that pursue humanity — ever since that cause became a power. It is religion under whatever form and in whatsoever nation. It is the sacerdotal caste, the priesthood and the churches; it is in those illusions that man looks upon as sacred, that he has to search out the source of that multitude of evils which is the great curse of humanity and that almost overwhelms mankind. Ignorance created gods and cunning took advantage of the opportunity. Look at India and look at Christendom and Islam, at Judaism and Fetichism. It is priestly imposture that rendered these gods so terrible to man; it is religion that makes of him the selfish bigot, the fanatic that hates all mankind out of his own sect without rendering him any better or more moral for it. It is belief in God and gods that makes two-thirds of humanity the slaves of a handful of those who deceive them under the false pretence of saving them. Is not man ever ready to commit any kind of evil if told that his god or gods demand the crime?, voluntary victim of an illusionary god, the abject slave of his crafty ministers. The Irish, Italian and Slavonian peasant will starve himself and see his family starving and naked to feed and clothe his padre and pope. For two thousand years India groaned under the weight of caste, Brahmins alone feeding on the fat of the land, and today the followers of Christ and those of Mahomet are cutting each other's throats in the names of and for the greater glory of their respective myths. Remember the sum of human misery will never be diminished unto that day when the better portion of humanity destroys in the name of Truth, morality, and universal charity, the altars of their false gods.

If it is objected that we too have temples, we too have priests and that our lamas also live on charity . . . let them know that the objects above named have in common with their Western equivalents, but the name. Thus in our temples there is neither a god nor gods worshipped, only the thrice sacred memory of the greatest as the holiest man that ever lived. If our lamas to honour the fraternity of the Bhikkhus established by our blessed master himself, go out to be fed by the laity, the latter often to the number of 5 to 25,000 is fed and taken care of by the Samgha (the fraternity of lamaic monks) the lamasery providing for the wants of the poor, the sick, the afflicted. Our lamas accept food, never money, and it is in those temples that the origin of evil is preached and impressed upon the people. There they are taught the four noble truths — ariya sakka, and the chain of causation (the 12 nidanas) gives them a solution of the problem of the origin and destruction of suffering.

Read the Mahavagga and try to understand not with the prejudiced Western mind but the spirit of intuition and truth what the Fully Enlightened one says in the 1st Khandhaka. Allow me to translate it for you.

"At the time the Blessed Buddha was at Uruvella on the shores of the river Nerovigara as he rested under the Boddhi tree of wisdom after he had become Sambuddha, at the end of the seventh day having his mind fixed on the chain of causation he spake thus: 'from ignorance spring the

Samkharas of threefold nature — productions of body, of speech, of thought. From the samkharas springs consciousness, from consciousness spring name and form, from this spring the six regions (of the six senses the seventh being the property of but the enlightened); from these springs contact

from this sensation; from this springs thirst (or desire, Kama, Tanha) from thirst attachment, existence, birth, old age and death, grief, lamentation, suffering, dejection and despair. Again by the destruction of ignorance, the samkharas are destroyed, and their consciousness name and form, the six regions, contact, sensation, thirst, attachment (selfishness), existence, birth, old age, death, grief, lamentation, suffering, dejection, and despair are destroyed. Such is the cessation of this whole mass of suffering."

Knowing this the Blessed One uttered this solemn utterance. "When the real nature of things becomes clear to the meditating Bikshu, then all his doubts fade away since he has learned what is that nature and what its cause. From ignorance spring all the evils. From knowledge comes the cessation of this mass of misery . . . and then the meditating Brahmana stands dispelling the hosts of Mara like the sun that illuminates the sky."

Meditation here means the superhuman (not supernatural) qualities, or arhatship in its highest of spiritual powers.

Copied out Simla, Sept. 28, 1882.

Letter 11 Table of Contents

Letter No. 11

Transcribed from a copy in Mr. Sinnett's handwriting. — ED.

Received by A.O.H., June 30th, 1882.

Simple prudence misgives me at the thought of entering upon my new role of an "instructor." If M. satisfied you but little I am afraid of giving you still less satisfaction since besides being restrained in my explanations, — for there are a thousand things I will have to leave unrevealed — by my vow of silence I have far less time at my disposal than he has. However, I'll try my best. Let it not be said that I failed to recognise your present sincere desire to become useful to the Society, hence to Humanity, for I am deeply alive to the fact that none better than yourself in India is calculated to disperse the mists of superstition and popular error by throwing light on the darkest problems. But before I answer your questions and explain our doctrine any further, I'll have to preface my replies with a long introduction. First of all and again I will draw your attention to the tremendous difficulty of finding appropriate terms in English which would convey to the educated European mind even an approximately correct notion about the various subjects we will have to treat upon. To illustrate my meaning I'll underline in red the technical words adopted and used by your men of Science and which withal are absolutely misleading not only when applied to such transcendental subjects as on hand but even when used by themselves in their own system of thought.

To comprehend my answers you will have first of all to view the eternal Essence, the Swabavat not as a compound element you call spirit-matter, but as the one element for which the English has no name. It is both passive and active, pure Spirit Essence in its absoluteness, and repose, pure matter in its finite and conditioned state, — even as an unponderable gas or that great unknown which science has pleased to call Force. When poets talk of the "shoreless ocean of immutability" we must regard the term but as a jocular parodox, since we maintain that there is no such thing as immutability — not in our Solar system at least. Immutability say the theists and Christians "is an attribute of God" and forthwith they endow that God with every mutable and variable quality and attribute, knowable as unknowable, and believe that they have solved the unsolvable and squared the circle. To this we reply if that which the theists call God, and science "Force" and "Potential Energy," were to become immutable but for one instant even during the Maha-Pralaya a period when even Brahm the creative architect of the world is said to have merged into non-being, then there could be no manwantara, and space alone would reign unconscious and supreme in the eternity of time. Nevertheless, Theism when speaking of mutable immutability is no more absurd than materialistic science talking of "latent potential energy," and the indestructibility of matter and force. What are we to believe as indestructible? Is it the invisible something that moves matter or the energy of moving bodies! What does modern science know of force proper, or say the forces, — the cause or causes of motion. How can there be such a thing as potential energy, i.e., an energy having latent inactive power since it is energy only while it is moving matter, and that if it ever ceased to move matter it would cease to be, and with it matter itself would disappear. Is force any happier term? Some thirty-five years back a Dr. Mayer offered the hypothesis now accepted as an axiom that force in the sense given it by modern science, like matter is indestructible namely when it ceases to be manifest in one form it still exists and has only passed into some other form. And yet your men of science have not found a single instance where one force is transformed into another, and Mr. Tyndall tells his opponents that "in no case is the force producing the motion annihilated or changed into anything else." Moreover we are indebted to modern science for the novel discovery that there exists a quantitative relation between the dynamic energy producing something and the "something" produced. Undoubtedly there exists a quantitive relation between cause and effect, between the amount of energy used in breaking one's neighbour's nose, and the damage done to that nose, but this does not solve one bit more the mystery of what they are pleased to call correlations, since it can be easily proved (and that on the authority of that same science) that neither motion nor energy is indestructible and that the physical forces are in no way or manner convertible one into another. I will cross-examine them in their own phraseology and we will see whether their theories are calculated to serve as a barrier to our "astounding doctrines." Preparing as I do to propound a teaching diametrically opposed to their own it is but just that I should clear the ground of scientific rubbish lest what I have to say should fall on a too encumbered soil and only bring forth weeds.

"This potential and imaginary materia prima cannot exist without form," says Raleigh, and he is right in so far that the materia prima of science exists but in their imagination. Can they say the same quantity of energy has always been moving the matter of the Universe? Certainly not so long as they teach that when the elements of the material cosmos, elements which had first to manifest themselves in their uncombined gaseous state, were uniting the quantity of matter — moving energy was a million times greater than it is now when our globe is cooling off. For where did the heat that was generated by this tremendous process of building up a universe go to? To the unoccupied chambers of space they say. Very well, but if it is gone for ever from the material universe and the energy operative on earth has never and at no time been the same, then how can they try to maintain the "unchangeable quantity of energy," that potential energy which a body may sometimes exert, the FORCE which passes from one body to another producing motion and which is not yet "annihilated or changed into anything else." Aye, we are answered, "but we still hold to its indestructibility; while it remains connected with matter, it can never cease to be, or less or more." Let us see whether it is so. I throw a brick up to a mason who is busy building the roof of a temple. He catches it and cements it in the roof. Gravity overcame the propelling energy which started the upward motion of the brick, and the dynamic energy of the ascending brick until it ceased to ascend. At that moment it was caught and fastened to the roof. No natural force could now move it, therefore it possesses no longer potential energy. The motion and the dynamic energy of the ascending brick are absolutely annihilated. Another example from their own text books. You fire a gun upward from the foot of a hill and the ball lodges in a crevice of the rock on that hill. No natural force can, for an indefinite period move it, so the ball as much as the brick has lost its potential energy. "All the motion and energy which was taken from the ascending ball by gravity is absolutely annihilated, no other motion or energy succeeds and gravity has received no increase of energy." Is it not true then that energy is indestructible! How then is it that your great authority teaches the world that "in no case is the force producing the motion annihilated or changed into anything else"?

I am perfectly aware of your answer and give you these illustrations but to show how misleading are the terms used by scientists, how vacillating and uncertain their theories and finally how incomplete all their teachings. One more objection and I have done. They teach that all the physical forces rejoicing in specific names such as gravity, inertia, cohesion, light, heat, electricity, magnetism, chemical affinity, are convertible one into another? If so the force producing must cease to be as the force produced becomes manifest. "A flying cannon ball moves only from its own inherent force of inertia." When it strikes it produces heat and other effects but its force of inertia is not the least diminished. It will require as much energy to start it again at the same velocity as it did at first. We may repeat the process a thousand times and as long as the quantity of matter remains the same its force of inertia will remain the same in quantity. The same in the case of gravity. A meteor falls and produces heat. Gravity is to be held to account for this, but the force of gravity upon the fallen body is not diminished. Chemical attraction draws and holds the particles of matter together, their collision producing heat. Has the former passed into the latter? Not in the least, since drawing the particles again together whenever these are separated it proves that it, the chemical affinity is not decreased, for it will hold them as strongly as ever together. Heat they say generates and produces electricity yet they find no decrease in the heat in the process. Electricity produces heat we are told? Electrometers show that the electrical current passes through some poor conductor, a platinum wire say and heats the latter. Precisely the same quantity of electricity, there being no loss of electricity, no decrease. What then has been converted into heat? Again electricity is said to produce magnetism.

I have on the table before me primitive electrometers in whose vicinity chelas come the whole day to recuperate their nascent powers. I do not find the slightest decrease in the electricity stored. The chelas are magnetized, but their magnetism or rather that of their rods is not that electricity under a new mask. No more than the flame of a thousand tapers lit at the flame of the Fo lamp is the flame of the latter. Therefore if by the uncertain twilight of modern science it is an axiomatic truth "that during vital processes the conversion only and never the creation of matter or force occurs" (Dr. J. R. Mayer's organic motion in its connection with nutrition) — it is for us but half a truth. It is neither conversion nor creation, but something for which science has yet no name.

Perhaps now you will be prepared to better understand the difficulty with which we will have to contend. Modern science is our best ally. Yet it is generally that same science which is made the weapon to break our heads with. However you will have to bear in mind (a) that we recognise but one element in Nature (whether spiritual or physical) outside which there can be no Nature since it is Nature itself (1), and which as the Akasa

pervades our solar system every atom being part of itself pervades throughout space and is space in fact, which pulsates as in profound sleep during the pralayas and the universal Proteus, the ever active Nature during the Manwantaras; (b) that consequently spirit and matter are one, being but a differentiation of states not essences, and that the Greek philosopher who maintained that the Universe was a huge animal penetrated the symbolical significance of the Pythagorean monad (which becomes two, then three and finally having become the tetracktis or the perfect square (thus evolving out of itself four and involuting three forms the sacred seven) — and thus was far in advance of all the scientific men of the present time; (c) that our notions of "cosmic matter" are diametrically opposed to those of western science. Perchance if you remember all this we will succeed in imparting to you at least the elementary axioms of our esoteric philosophy more correctly than heretofore. Fear not my kind brother; your life is not ebbing away and it will not be extinct before you have completed your mission. I can sayno more except that the Chohan has permitted me to devote my spare time to instruct those who are willing to learn, and you will have work enough to "drop" your Fragments at intervals of two or three months. My time is very limited yet I will do what I can. But I can promise nothing beyond this. I will have to remain silent as to the Dyan Chohans nor can I impart to you the secrets concerning the men of the seventh round. The recognition of the higher phases of man's being on this planet is not to be attained by mere acquirement of knowledge. Volumes of the most perfectly constructed information cannot reveal to man life in the higher regions. One has to get a knowledge of spiritual facts by personal experience and from actual observation, for as Tyndall puts it "facts looked directly at are vital, when they pass into words half the sap is taken out of them." And because you recognise this great principle of personal observation, and are not slow to put into practice what you have acquired in the way of useful information, is perhaps the reason why the hitherto implacable Chohan my Master has finally permitted me to devote to a certain extent a portion of my time to the progress of the Eclectic. But I am but one and you are many, and none of my Fellow Brothers with the exception of M. will help me in this work, not even our semi-European Greek Brother who but a few days back remarked that when "every one of the Eclectics on the Hill will have become a Zetetic then will he see what he can do for them." And as you are aware there is very little hope for this. Men seek after knowledge until they weary themselves to death, but even they do not feel very impatient to help their neighbour with their knowledge; hence there arises a coldness, a mutual indifference which renders him who knows inconsistent with himself and inharmonious with his surroundings. Viewed from our standpoint the evil is far greater on the spiritual than on the material side of man: hence my sincere thanks to you and desire to urge your attention to such a course as shall aid a true progression and achieve wider results by turning your knowledge into a permanent teaching in the form of articles and pamphlets.

But for the attainment of your proposed object, viz. — for a clearer comprehension of the extremely abstruse and at first incomprehensible theories of our occult doctrine never allow the serenity of your mind to be disturbed during your hours of literary labour, nor before you set to work. It is upon the serene and placid surface of the unruffled mind that the visions gathered from the invisible find a representation in the visible world. Otherwise you would vainly seek those visions, those flashes of sudden light which have already helped to solve so many of the minor problems and which alone can bring the truth before the eye of the soul. It is with jealous care that we have to guard our mind-plane from all the adverse influences which daily arise in our passage through earth-life.

Many are the questions you ask me in your several letters, I can answer but few. Concerning Eglinton I will beg you to wait for developments. In regard to your kind lady the question is more serious and I cannot undertake the responsibility of making her change her diet as ABRUPTLY as you suggest. Flesh and meat she can give up at any time as it can never hurt; as for liquor with which Mrs. H. has long been sustaining her system, you yourself know the fatal effects it may produce in an enfeebled constitution were the latter to be suddenly deprived of its stimulant. Her physical life is not a real existence backed by a reserve of vital force, but a factitious one fed upon the spirit of liquor however small the quantity. While a strong constitution might rally after the first shock of such a change as proposed, the chances are that she would fall into a decline. So would she if opium or arsenic were her chief sustenance. Again I promise nothing yet will do in this direction what I can. "Converse with you and teach you through astral light?" Such a development of your psychical powers of hearing, as you name, — the Siddhi of hearing occult sounds would not be at all the easy matter you imagine. It was never done to any one of us, for the iron rule is that what powers one gets he must himself acquire. And when acquired and ready for use the powers lie dumb and dormant in their potentiality like the wheels and clockwork inside a musical box; and only then does it become easy to wind up the key and set them in motion. Of course you have now more chances before you than my zoophagous friend Mr. Sinnett, who were he even to give up feeding on animals would still feel a craving for such a food, a craving over which he would have no control and, — the impediment would be the same in that case. Yet every earnestly disposed man may acquire such powers practically. That is the finality of it; there are no more distinctions of persons in this than there are as to whom the sun shall shine upon or the air give vitality to. There are the powers of all nature before you; take what you can.

Your suggestion as to the box I will think over. There would have to be some contrivance to prevent the discharge of power when once the box was charged, whether during transit or subsequently: I will consider and take advice or rather permission. But I must say the idea is utterly repugnant to us as everything else smacking of spirits and mediumship. We would prefer by far using natural means as in the last transmission of my letter to you. It was one of M's chelas who left it for you in the flower-shed, where he entered invisible to all yet in his natural body, just as he had entered many a time your museum and other rooms, unknown to you all, during and after the "Old Lady's" stay. But unless he is told to do so by M. he will never do it, and that is why your letter to me was left unnoticed. You have an unjust feeling towards my Brother, kind sir, for he is better and more powerful than I — at least he is not as bound and restricted as I am — I have asked H.

P. B. to send you a number of philosophical letters from a Dutch Theosophist at Penang — one in whom I take an interest: you ask for more work and her — one is some. They are translations, originals of those portions of Schoppenhauer which are most in affinity with our Arhat doctrines. The English is not idiomatic but the material is valuable. Should you be disposed to utilise any portion of it, I would recommend your opening a direct correspondence with Mr. Sanders, F.T.S. — the translator. Schoppenhauer's philosophical value is so well known in the western countries that a comparison or connotation of his teachings upon will, etc., with those you have received from ourselves might be instructive. Yes I am quite ready to look over your 50 or 60 pages and make notes on the margins: have them set up by all means and send them to me either through little "Deb" or Damodar and Djual Kul will transmit them. In a very few days, perhaps to-morrow, your two questions will be amply answered by me.


Yours sincerely,

K. H.

P.S. — The Tibetan translation is not quite ready yet.

Letter 12 Table of Contents


1. Not in the sense of Natus "born" but Nature as the sum total of everything visible and invisible, of forms and minds, the aggregate of the known (and unknown), causes and effects, the universe in short infinite and uncreated and endless, as it is without a beginning. (return to text)

Letter No. 12

Your hypothesis is far nearer the truth than Mr. Hume's. Two factors must be kept in view — (a) a fixed period, and (b) a fixed rate of development nicely adjusted to it. Almost unthinkably long as is a Mahayug, it is still a definite term, and within it must be accomplished the whole order of development, or to state it in occult phraseology: the descent of Spirit into matter and its return to the re-emergence. A chain of beads, and each bead a world — is an illustration already made familiar to you. You have already pondered over the life impulse beginning with each Manvantara to evolve the first of these worlds; to perfect it; to people it successively with all the aerial forms of life. And after completing on this first world seven cycles — or revolutions of development — in each kingdom as you know — passing forward down the arc — to similarly evolve the next world in the chain, perfect it, and abandon it. Then to the next and next and next — until the sevenfold round of world-evolutions along the chain is run through and the Mahayug comes to its end. Then chaos again — the Pralaya. As this life-impulse (at the seventh and last round from planet to planet) moves on it leaves behind it dying and — very soon — "dead planets."

The last seventh round man having passed on to a subsequent world, the precedent one with all its mineral, vegetable and animal life (except man) begins to gradually die out, when with the exit of the last animalcule it is extinguished, or as H.P.B. has it — snuffed out (minor or partial pralaya). When the Spirit-man reaches the last bead of the chain and passes into final Nirvana, this last world also disappears or passes into subjectivity. Thus are there among the stellar galaxies births and deaths of worlds ever following each other in the orderly procession of natural Law. And — as said already — the last bead is strung upon the thread of the "Mahayuga."

When the last cycle of man-bearing has been completed by that last fecund earth; and humanity has reached in a mass the stage of Buddhahood and passed out of the objective existence into the mystery of Nirvana — then "strikes the hour"; the seen becomes the unseen, the concrete resumes its pre-cyclic state of atomic distribution.

But the dead worlds left behind the on-sweeping impulse do not continue dead. Motion is the eternal order of things and affinity or attraction its handmaid of all works. The thrill of life will again reunite the atoms, and it will stir again in the inert planet when the time comes. Though all its forces have remained statu quo and are now asleep, yet little by little it will — when the hour re-strikes — gather for a new cycle of man-bearing maternity, and give birth to something still higher as moral and physical types than during the preceding manvantara. And its "cosmic atoms already in a differentiated state" (differing — in the producing force, in the mechanical sense — of motions and effects) remain statu quo as well as globes and everything else in the process of formation." Such is the "hypothesis fully in accordance with (your) (my) note." For, as planetary development is as progressive as human or race evolution, the hour of the Pralaya's coming catches the series of worlds at successive stages of evolution; (i.e.) each has attained to some one of the periods of evolutionary progress — each stops there, until the outward impulse of the next manvantara sets it going from that very point — like a stopped timepiece rewound. Therefore, have I used the word "differentiated."

At the coming of the Pralaya no human, animal, or even vegetable entity will be alive to see it, but there will be the earth or globes with their mineral kingdoms; and all these planets will be physically disintegrated in the pralaya, yet not destroyed; for they have their places in the sequence of evolution and their "privations" coming again out of the subjective, they will find the exact point from which they have to move on around the chain of "manifested forms." This as we know is repeated endlessly throughout ETERNITY. Each man of us has gone this ceaseless round, and will repeat it for ever and ever. The deviation of each one's course, and his rate of progress from Nirvana to Nirvana is governed by causes which he himself creates out of the exigencies in which he finds himself entangled.

This picture of an eternity of action may appal the mind that has been accustomed to look forward to an existence of ceaseless repose. But their concept is not supported by the analogies of nature, nor — and ignorant though I may be thought of your Western Science, may I not say? — by the teachings of that Science. We know that periods of action and rest follow each other in everything in nature from the macrocosm with its Solar Systems down to man and its parent-earth, which has its seasons of activity followed by those of sleep; and that in short all nature, like her begotten living forms has her time for recuperation. So with the spiritual individuality, the Monad which starts on its downward and upward cyclic rotation. The periods which intervene between each great manvantarian "round" are proportionately long to reward for the thousands of existences passed on various globes; while the time given between each "race birth" — or rings as you call them — is sufficiently lengthy to compensate for any life of strife and misery during that lapse of time passed in conscious bliss after the rebirth of the Ego. To conceive of an eternity oaf bliss or woe, and to offset it to any conceivable deeds of merit or demerit of a being who may have lived a century or even a millenium in the flesh, can only be proposed by one who has never yet grasped the awful reality of the word Eternity, nor pondered upon the law of perfect justice and equilibrium which pervades nature. Further instructions may be given you, which will show how nicely justice is done not to man only but also his subordinates, and throw some light, I hope, upon the vexed question of Good and Evil.

And now to crown this effort of mine (of writing) I may as well pay an old debt, and answer an old question of yours concerning earth incarnations. Koot'humi answers some of your queries — at least began writing yesterday but was called off by duty — but I may help him anyhow. I trust you will not find much difficulty — not as much as hitherto — in making out my letter. I have become a very plain writer since he reproached me with making you lose your valuable time over my scrawlings. His rebuke struck home, and as you see I have amended my evil ways.

Let us see what your Science has to tell us about ethnography and other matters. The latest conclusions to which your wise men of the West seem to have arrived briefly stated are the following. The theories even approximately correct I venture to underline with blue. [These passages appear in bold type. — ED.]

(1) The earliest traces of man they can find disappear beyond the close of a period of which the rock-fossils furnish the only clue they possess.

((2) Starting thence they find four races of men who have successively inhabited Europe (a) The race of the river Drift — mighty hunters (perchance Nimrod?) who dwelt in the then sub-tropical climate of Western Europe, who used chipped stone implements of the most primitive kind and were contemporary with the rhinoceros and the mammoth; (b) the so-called cave-men, a race developed during the glacial period (the Esquimaux being now, they say, its only type) and which possessed finer weapons and tools of chipped stone since they made with wondrous accuracy pictures of various animals they were familiar with, simply with the aid of sharp pointed flints on the antlers of reindeer and on bones and stones; (c) the third race — the men of the Neolithic age are found already grinding their stone implements, building houses and boats and making pottery, in short — the lake dwellers of Switzerland; and finally (d) appears the fourth race, coming from Central Asia. These are the fair-complexioned Aryans who intermarry with the remnants of the dark Iberians — now represented by the swarthy Basks of Spain. This is the race which they consider as the progenitors of you modern peoples of Europe.

(3) They add moreover, that the men of the river Drift, preceded the glacial period known in geology as the Pleistocene and originated some 240,000 years ago, while human beings generally (see Geikie, Dawkins, Fiske and others) inhabited Europe at least 100,000 years earlier.

With one solitary exception they are all wrong. They come near enough yet miss the mark in every case. There were not four but five races; and we are that fifth with remnants of the fourth. (A more perfect evolution or race with each mahacyclic round); while the first race appeared on earth not half a million of years ago (Fiske's theory) — but several millions. The latest scientific theory is that of the German and American professors who say through Fiske: "we see man living on the earth for perhaps half a million years to all intents and purposes dumb."

He is both right and wrong. Right about the race having been "dumb," for long ages of silence were required, for the evolution and mutual comprehension of speech, from the moans and mutterings of the first remove of man above the highest anthropoid (a race now extinct since "nature shuts the door behind her" as she advances, in more than one sense) — up to the first monosyllable uttering man. But he is wrong in saying all

By the bye, you ought to come to some agreement as to the terms used when discussing upon cyclic evolutions. Our terms are untranslateable; and without a good knowledge of our complete system (which cannot be given but to regular initiates) would suggest nothing definite to your perceptions but only be a source of confusion as in the case of the terms "Soul" and "Spirit" with all your metaphysical writers — especially the Spiritualists.

You must have patience with Subba Row. Give him time. He is now at his tapas and will not be disturbed. I'll tell him not to neglect you but he is very jealous and regards teaching an Englishman as a sacrilege.

Yours M.

P.S. My writing is good but the paper rather thin for penmanship. Cannot write English with a brush, though; would be worse.

Letter 13 Table of Contents

Letter No. 13

[Mr. Sinnett's Queries in ordinary type with M.'s Replies in bold type. — Ed.]

Cosmological Notes and Queries and M.'s Replies. Received January, 1882. Allahabad.


(1) I conceive that at the close of a pralaya the impulse given by the Dhyan Chohans does not develop from chaos, a succession of worlds simultaneously, but seriatim. The comprehension of the manner in which each in succession ensues from its predecessor as the impact of the original impulse might perhaps be better postponed till after I am enabled to realize the working of the whole machine — the cycle of worlds — after all its parts have come into existence.


(1) Correctly conceived. Nothing in nature springs into existence suddenly all being subjected to thesame law of gradual evolution. Realize but once the process of the maha cycle, of one sphere and you have realized them all. One man is born like another man, one race evolves, develops, and declines likeanother and all other races. Nature follows the same groove from the "creation" of a universe down to that of a moskito. In studying esoteric cosmogony, keep a spiritual eye upon the physiological process ofhuman birth; proceed from cause to effect establishing a [The original letter has a small portion missing at this point, hence the incompleteness of the following lines. — ED.] . . . go along, analogies between the be . . . man and that of a world. In our doctri . . . will find necessary the synthetic me . . . you will have to embrace the whole . . .


 that is to say to blend the macrocosm . . .

 cosm together — before you are ena . . .to study the parts separately or analyze them with profit to your understanding. Cosmology is the physiology of the universe spiritualized, for there is but one law.



(2) Taking the middle of a period of activity between two pralayas, i.e., of a manvantara — what I understand to happen is this. Atoms are polarized in the highest region of spiritual efflux from behind the veil of primitive cosmic matter. The magnetic impulse which has accomplished this result flits from one mineral form to another within the first sphere till having run the round of existence in that kingdom of the first sphere it descends in a current of attraction to the second sphere.


(2) Polarize themselves during the process of motion and propelled by the irresistible Force at work. InCosmogony and the work of nature the positive and the negative or the active and passive forces correspond to the male and female principles. Your spiritual efflux comes not from "behind the veil"but is the male seed falling into the veil of cosmic matter. The active is attracted by the passive principle and the Great Nag, the serpent emblem of the eternity, attracts its tail to its mouth forming thereby acircle (cycles in the eternity) in that incessant pursuit of the negative by the positive. Hence the emblem of the lingam the phallus and the {k}teis. The one and chief attribute of the universal spiritual principle


— the unconscious but ever active life-giver — is to expand and shed; that of the universal material principle to gather in and fecundate. Unconscious and non-existing when separated, they becomeconsciousness and life when brought together. Hence again — Brahma, from the root "brih" the Sanskrit for "to expand, grow or to fructify. Brahma being but the vivifying expansive force of nature in its eternal evolution.


(3) Do worlds of effects intervene between the worlds of activity in the series of descent?


(3) The worlds of effects are not lokas or localities. They are the shadow of the world of causes their souls— worlds having like men their seven principles which develop and grow simultaneously with thebody. Thus the body of man is wedded to and remains for ever within the body of his planet; his individual jivatma life principle that which is called in physiology animal spirits returns after death to its source — Fohat; his linga shariram will be drawn into Akasa; his Kamarupa will recommingle with the Universal Sakti— the Will-Force, or universal energy; his "animal soul" borrowed from the breath of Universal Mind will return to the Dhyan Chohans; his sixth principle — whether drawn into orejected from the matrix of the Great Passive Principle must remain in its own sphere — either as part of the crude material or as an individualized entity to be reborn in a higher world of causes. Theseventh will carry it from the Devachan and follow the new Ego to its place of re-birth. . . .

(4) The magnetic impulse which cannot yet be conceived of as an individuality — enters the second sphere in the same (the mineral) kingdom as that to which it belonged in sphere I and runs the round of mineral incarnations there passing on to sphere III. Our earth is still a sphere of necessity for it. Hence it passes into the upward series — and from the highest of these passes into the vegetable kingdom of sphere I.

Without any new impulse of creative force from above, its career round the cycle of worlds as a mineral principle has developed some new attractions or polarization which cause it to assume the lowest vegetable form — in vegetable forms it passes successively through the cycle of worlds, the whole being still a circle of necessity (as no responsibility can yet have accrued to an unconscious individuality, and therefore it cannot at any stage of its progress do anything to select one or other of divergent paths). Or is there something in the life even of a vegetable which, though not responsibility, may lead it up or down at this critical stage of its progress?

Having completed the whole cycle as a vegetable the growing individuality expands on the next circuit into an animal form.

(4) The evolution of the worlds cannot be considered apart from the evolution of everything created or having being on these worlds. Your accepted conceptions of cosmogony — whether from thetheological or scientific standpoints — do not enable you to solve a single anthropological, or even ethnical problem and they stand in your way whenever you attempt to solve the problem of the raceson this planet. When a man begins to talk about creation and the origin of man, he is butting against the facts incessantly. Go on saying: "Our planet and man were created — and you will be fightingagainst hard facts for ever, analyzing and losing time over trifling details — unable to ever grasp the whole. But once admit that our planet and ourselves are no more creations than the iceberg now beforeme (in our K.H.'s home) but that both planet and man are — states for a given time; that their present appearance — geological and anthropological — is transitory and but a condition concomitant of thatstage of evolution at which they have arrived in the descending cycle — and all will become plain. You will easily understand what is meant by the "one and only" element or principle in the universe andthat androgynous; the seven-headed serpent Ananda of Vishnu, the Nag around Buddha — the great dragon eternity biting with its active head its passive tail, from the emanations of which spring worlds,beings and things. You will comprehend the reason why the first philosopher proclaimed ALL — Maya — but that one principle, which rests during the maha-pralayas only — the "nights of Brahm." . . .

Now think: the Nag awakes. He heaves a heavy breath and the latter is sent like an electric shock all along the wire encircling Space. Go to your fortepiano and execute upon the lower register of keys the seven notes of the lower octave — up and down. Begin pianissimo; crescendo from the first key and having struck fortissimo on the last lower note go back diminuendo getting out of your last note a hardlyperceptible sound — "morendo pianissimo" (as I luckily for my illustration find it printed in one of the musick pieces in K.H.'s old portmanteau). The first and the last notes will represent to you the first andlast spheres in the cycle of evolution — the highest! the one you strike once is our planet. Remember you have to reverse the order on the fortepiano: begin with the seventh note, not with the first. Theseven vowels chanted by the Egyptian priests to the seven rays of the rising sun to which Memnon responded, meant but that. The one Life-principle when in action runs in circuits even as known in physical science. It runs the round in human body, where the head represents, and is to the Microcosmos (the physical world of matter) what the summit of the cycle is to the Macrocosmos (theworld of universal spiritual Forces); and so with the formation of worlds and the great descending and ascending "circle of necessity." All is one Law. Man has his seven principles, the germs of which hebrings with him at his birth. So has a planet or a world. From first to last every sphere has its world of effects, the passing through which will afford a place of final rest to each of the human principles — theseventh principle excepted. The world No. A is born; and with it, clinging like barnacles to the bottom of a ship in motion — evolute from its first breath of life, the living beings of its atmosphere, from the germs hitherto inert, now awakening to life with the first motion of the sphere. With sphere A, beginsthe mineral kingdom and runs the round of mineral evolution. By the time it is completed sphere B comes into objectivity and draws to itself the life which has completed its round on sphere A, and hasbecome a surplus. (The fount of life being inexhaustible, for it is the true Arachnea doomed to spin out its web eternally — save the periods of pralaya)). Then comes vegetable life on sphere A, and the sameprocess takes place. On its downward course "life" becomes with every state coarser, more material; on its upward more shadowy. No — there is, nor can there be any responsibility until the time whenmatter and spirit are properly equilibrized. Up to man "life" has no responsibility in whatever form; no more than has the foetus who in his mother's womb passes through all the forms of life — as amineral, a vegetable, an animal to become finally Man.


(5) Where does it get the animal soul, its fifth principle, from? Has the potentiality of this resided from the first in the original magnetic impulse which constituted the mineral, or at every transition from the last world on the ascending side to sphere I does it, so to speak, pass through an ocean of spirit and assimilate some new principle?


(5) Thus you see his fifth principle is evolved from within himself, man having as you well say "thepotentiality" of all the seven principles as a germ, from the very instant he appears in the first world of causes as a shadowy breath, which coagulates with, and is hardened together with the parent sphere.


Spirit or LIFE is indivisible. And when we speak of the seventh principle it is neither quality nor quantity nor yet form that are meant, but rather the space occupied in that ocean of spirit by theresults or effects — (beneficent as are all those of a co-worker with nature) — impressed thereon.

(6) From the highest animal (non-human) form in sphere I — how does it get to sphere II? It is inconceivable that it can descend to the lowest animal form there, but otherwise how can it go through the whole circle of life on each planet in turn?

If it runs its cycle in a spiral (i.e., from form 1 of sphere I to form 1 of sphere II, etc. — then to form 2 of sphere I, II, III, etc., and then to form 3 of sphere I. . . . nth) then it seems to me that the same rule must apply to the mineral and vegetable individualities if they have such, and yet some things I have been told seem to militate against that. (State them and they will be answered and explained.)

For the moment I must work on that hypothesis however.

(Having swept through the cycle in the highest animal form the animal soul in its next plunge into the ocean of spirit acquires the seventh principle which endows it with a sixth. This determines its future on Earth, and at the close of the earth life has sufficient vitality to keep an attraction of its own for the seventh principle, or loses this and ceases to exist as a separate entity. All this misconceived.)

Seventh principle always there as a latent force in every one of the principles — even body. As themacrocosmic Whole it is present even in the lower sphere, but there is nothing there to assimilate it to itself.

(6) Why, "inconceivable?" The highest animal form in sphere I or A being irresponsible, there is no degradation for it to merge into sphere II or B as the most infinitesimal of that sphere. While on itsupward course, as you were told, man finds even the lowest animal form there— higher than he was himself on earth. How do you know that men and animals and even life in its incipient stage is not athousand times higher there, than it is here? Besides which, every kingdom (and we have seven — while you have but three) is subdivided into seven degrees or classes. Man (physically) is a compound ofall the kingdoms, and spiritually — his individuality is no worse for being shut up within the casing of an ant than it is for being inside a king. It is not the outward or physical shape that dishonours andpollutes the five principles — but the mental perversity. Then it is but at his fourth round when arrived at the full possession of his Kama-energy and is completely matured, that man becomes fully responsible, as at the sixth he may become a Buddha and at the seventh before the Pralaya — a "Dyan Chohan." Mineral, vegetable, animal-man, all of these have to run their seven rounds during the period of earth's activity — the Maha Yug. I will not enter here on the details of mineral and vegetable evolution, but I will notice only man — or — animal-man. He starts downward as a simply spiritualentity — an unconscious seventh principle (a Parabrahm in contradistinction to Para-parabrahm) — with the germs of the other six principles lying latent and dormant in him. Gathering solidity at everysphere — his six pr. when passing through the worlds of effects, and his outward form in the worlds of causes (for these worlds or stages on the descending side we have other names) when he touches ourplanet he is but a glorious bunch of light upon a sphere itself yet pure and undefiled (for mankind and every living thing on it increase in their materiality with the planet). At that stage our globe is like thehead of a newly born babe — soft, and with undefined features, and man — an Adam before the breath of life was breathed into his nostrils (to quote your own bungled up Scriptures for your bettercomprehension). For man and (our planets) nature — it is day — the first (see distorted tradition in your Bible). Man No. 1 makes his appearance at the apex of the circle of the spheres on sphere No. 1,after the completion of the seven rounds or periods of the two kingdoms (known to you) and thus he is said to be created on the eighth day (see Bible Chapter 11; note verses 5 and 6 and think what is meantthere by "mist" — and verse 7 wherein LAW the Universal great fashioner is termed "God" by Christians and Jews, and understood as Evolution by Kabalists). During this first round "animal-man"runs, as you say, his cycle in a spiral. On the descending arc — whence he starts after the completion of the seventh round of animal life on his own individual seven rounds — he has to enter every sphere not as a lower animal as you understand it but as a lower man. Since during the cycle which preceded his round as a man he performed it as the highest type of animal. Your "Lord God," says Bible, chapter I,verses 25 and 26 — after having made all said: "Let us make man in our image," etc., and creates man — an androgyne ape! (extinct on our planet) the highest in intelligence in the animal kingdom andwhose descendants you find in the anthropoids of to-day. Will you deny the possibility of the highest anthropoid in the next sphere being higher in intelligence than some men down here — savages forinstance, the African dwarf-race and our own Veddahs of Ceylon. But man has no such "degradation" to go through as soon as he has reached the fourth stage of his cyclic rounds. Like the lower lives and beings during his first, second and third round and while he is an irresponsible compound of pure matter and pure spirit (none of them as yet defiled by the consciousness of their possible purposes andapplications) from sphere I, where he has performed his local sevenfold round of evolutionary process from the lowest class of the highest species of — say — anthropoids up to rudimentary man certainlyenters No. 2 as an ape (the last word being used for your better comprehension). At this round or stage his individuality is as dormant in him as that of a foetus during his period of gestation. He has noconsciousness, no sense, for he begins as a rudimentary astral man and lands on our planet as a primitive physical man. So far it is a mere passing on of mechanical motion. Volition and consciousnessare at the same time self-determining and determined by causes, and the volition of man his intelligence and consciousness will awake but when his fourth principle Kama is matured and completed by its (seriatim) contact with the Kamas or energizing forces of all the forms man has passed through in his previous three rounds. The present mankind is at its fourth round (mankind as a genus or a kind not a RACE nota bene) of the post-pralayan cycle of evolution; and as its various races, so the individual entities in them are unconsciously to themselves performing their local earthly sevenfold cycles — hence thevast difference in the degrees of their intelligence, energy and so on. Now every individuality will be followed on its ascending arc by the Law of retribution — Karma and death accordingly. The perfectman or the entity which reached full perfection, (each of his seven principles being matured) will not be reborn here. His local terrestrial cycle is completed and he has to either proceed onward or — beannihilated as an individuality. (The incomplete entities have to be reborn or reincarnated). (1)On their fifth round after a partial Nirvana when the zenith of the grand cycle is reached, they will be heldresponsible henceforth in their descents from sphere to sphere, as they will have to appear on this earth as a still more perfect and intellectual race. This downward course has not yet begun but will soon.Only how many — oh, how many will be destroyed on their way!

The above said is the rule. The Buddhas and Avatars form the exception as verily we have yet some Avatars left to us on earth.

(7) The animal soul having in successive passages round the cycle lost, so to speak, the momentum which previously carried it past the divergent path downward which strikes off here, falls into the lower world, in the relatively brief cycle in which its individuality is dissipated.

But this would only be the case with the animal soul which had not, in its union with spirit, developed a durable sixth principle. If it had done this, and if the sixth principle drawing to itself the individuality of the complete man, had withered the interior fifth principle by so doing — as the aloe's flower, when thrown up, withers its leaves — then the animal soul would not have cohesion enough to enter on another existence in a lower world and would be soon dissipated in the sphere of this earth's attraction.

(7) Reforming your conceptions on what I gave you above you will understand now better.

The whole individuality is centred in the three middle or 3rd, 4th and 5th principles. During earthly life it is all in the fourth the centre of energy, volition — will. Mr. Hume has perfectly defined thedifference between personality and individuality. The former hardly survives — the latter, to run successfully its seven-fold downward and upward course has to assimilate to itself the eternal life-power residing but in the seventh and then blend the three (fourth, fifth and seventh) into one — the sixth. Those who succeed in doing so become Buddhs, Dyan Chohans, etc. The chief object of ourstruggles and initiations is to achieve this union while yet on this earth. Those who will be successful have nothing to fear of during the fifth, sixth and seventh rounds. But this is a mystery. Our beloved K.H. is on his way to the goal — the highest of all beyond as on this sphere.

I have to thank you for all you have done for our two friends. It is a debt of gratitude we owe you.


For some short time you will not hear of, or from me — PREPARE.

Letter 144 Table of Contents


1. By-the-bye, I'll re-write for you pages 345 to 357, Vol. I., of Isis — much jumbled, and confused by Olcott, who thought he was improving it! (return to text)

Letter No. 14

[Transcribed from a copy in Mr. Sinnett's handwriting — ED.]

Letter from K.H. Answering Queries. Received by A.O.H., July 9th, 1882.


(1) We understand that the man-bearing cycle of necessity of our solar system consists of thirteen objective globes, of which ours is the lowest, six above it in the ascending, and six in the descending cycle with a fourteenth world lower still than ours. Is this correct?


(1) The number is not quite correct. There are seven objective and seven subjective globes (I have beenjust permitted for the first time to give you the right figure), the worlds of causes and of effects. The former have our earth occupying the lower turning point where spirit-matter equilibrates. But do nottrouble yourself to go into calculations even on this correct basis for it will only puzzle you, since the infinite ramifications of the number seven (which is one of our greatest mysteries) being so closelyallied and interdependent with the seven principles of Nature and man — this figure is the only one I am permitted (so far) to give you. What I can reveal I do so in a letter I am just finishing.


(2) We understand that below man you reckon not three kingdoms as we do (mineral, vegetable and animal) but seven. Please enumerate and explain these.


(2) Below man there are three in the objective and three in the subjective region, with man a septenary. Two of the three former none but an initiate could conceive of; the third is the Inner kingdom — belowthe crust of the earth which we could name but would feel embarrassed to describe. These seven kingdoms are preceded by other and numerous septenary stages and combinations.


(3) We understand that the monad, starting in the highest world of the descending series, appears there in a mineral encasement, and there goes through a series of seven encasements representing the seven classes into which the mineral kingdom is divided, and that this done it passes to the next planet and does likewise (I purposely say nothing of the worlds of results, where it takes on the development the result of what it has gone through in the last world and the necessary preparation for the next) and so on right through the thirteen spheres, making altogether 91 mineral existences. (a) Is this correct? (b) If so, what are the classes we are to reckon in the mineral kingdom? Also (c) How does the monad get out of one encasement into another; in the case of inherbations and incarnations, the plant and animal dies, but so far as we know the mineral does not die, so how does the monad in the first round get out of one into another inmetalliation? (d) And has every separate molecule of the mineral a monad or only those groups of molecules where definite structure is observable such as crystals?


(3) Yes; in our string of worlds it starts at globe "A" of the descending series and passing through allthe preliminary evolutions and combinations of the first three kingdoms it finds itself encased in its first mineral form (in what I call race when speaking of man and what we may call class in general) —of class 1 — there. Only it passes through seveninstead of "through the thirteen spheres" even omitting the intermediate "worlds of results." Having passed through its seven great classes of inmetalliation (agood word this) with their septenary ramifications — the monad gives birth to the vegetable kingdom and moves on to the next planet "B."


(a) As you now see, except as to the numbers. (b) Your geologists divide, I believe, stones into three great groups — of Sandstone, granite and chalk; or the sedimentary, organic, and igneous, followingtheir physical characteristics just as the psychologists and spiritualists divide man into the trinity of body, soul, and spirit. Our method is totally different. We divide minerals (also the other kingdoms)according to their occult properties, i.e., according to the relative proportion of the seven universal principles which they contain. I am sorry to refuse you, but I cannot, am not permitted to answer yourquestion. To facilitate for you a question of simple nomenclature, however, I would advise you to study perfectly the seven principles in man, and thus to divide the seven great classes of the minerals


correspondentially. For instance, the group of the sedimentary would answer to the compound (chemically speaking) body of man or his first principle; the organic to the second (some call it third)principle or jiva, etc., etc. You must exercise your own intuitions in that. Thus you might also intuite certain truths even as to their properties. I am more than willing to help you but things have to bedivulged gradually.(c) By occult osmosis.The plant and animal leave their carcases behind when life is extinct. So does the mineral only at longer intervals, as its rocky body is more lasting. It dies at the endof every manwantariccycle, or at the close of one "Round" as you would call it. It is explained in the letter I am preparing for you. (d) Every molecule is part of the Universal Life. Man's soul (his fourthand fifth principle) is but a compound of the progressed entities of the lower kingdom. The superabundance or preponderance of one over another compound will often determine the instinctsand passions of a man, unless these are checked by the soothing and spiritualizing influence of his sixth principle.


(4) Please note, we call the Grand Cycle that the monad has performed in the mineral kingdom a "round" which we understand to contain thirteen (seven) stations, or objective, more or less material worlds. At each of these stations it performs what we call a "world ring," which includes seven inmetalliations, one in each of the seven classes of that kingdom. Is this accepted for nomenclature and correct?


(4) I believe it will lead to a further confusion. A Round we are agreed to call the passage of a monad from globe "A" to globe "Z" (or "G") through the encasement in all and each of the four kingdoms,viz., as a mineral, a vegetable, an animal and man or the Deva kingdom. The "world ring" is correct.


M. advised Mr. Sinnett strongly to agree upon a nomenclature before going any further. A few strayfacts were given to you par contrebande and on the smuggling principle hitherto. But now since you seem really and seriously determined to study and utilize our philosophy — it is time we should beginto work seriously. Because we are constrained to deny to our friends an insight into the higher Mathematics it is no reason why we should refuse to teach them arithmetic. The monad performs notonly "world rings" or seven major inmetalliations, inherbations, zoonisations (?) and incarnations — but an infinitude of sub-rings or subordinate whirls all in series of sevens. As the geologist divides thecrust of the earth into great divisions, sub-divisions, minor compartments and zones; and the botanist his plants into orders, classes and species, and the zoologist his subjects into classes, orders andfamilies, so we have our arbitrary classifications and our nomenclature. But besides all this being incomprehensible to you, volumes upon volumes out of the Books of Kiu-te and others would have to bewritten. Their commentaries are worse still. They are filled with the most abstruse mathematical calculations the key to most of which are in the hands of our highest adepts only, since showing as theydo the infinitude of the phenomenal manifestations in the side projections of the one Force they are again secret. Therefore I doubt whether I will be allowed to give you for the present anything beyondthe mere unitary or root idea. Anyhow I will do my best.


(5) We understand that in each of your other six kingdoms, a monad similarly performs a complete round, in each round stopping in each of the thirteen stations, and there performing in each a world ring of seven lives, one in each of the seven classes into which each of the 6 said kingdoms are divided. Is this correct, and, if so, will you give us the seven classes of these six kingdoms?


(5) If by kingdoms the seven kingdoms or regions of the earth are meant — and I do not see how it canmean anything else — then the query is answered in my reply to your Question (2) and if so then the five out of the seven are already enumerated. The first two are related as well as the third, to theevolution of the elementals and of the Inner kingdom.


(6) If we are right then the total existences prior to the man-period is 637. Is this correct? Or are there seven existences in each class of each kingdom, 4,459? Or what are the total numbers and how divided? One point more. In these lower kingdoms is the number of lives, so to speak, invariable, or does it vary, and, if so, how, why, and within what limits?


(6) Not being permitted to give you the whole truth, or divulge the number of isolated fractions, I amunable to satisfy you by giving you the total number. Rest assured my dear Brother, that to one who does not seek to become a practical occultist these numbers are immaterial. Even our high chelas are


refused these particulars to the moment of their initiation into adeptship. These figures as I have already said are so interwoven with the profoundest psychological mysteries that to divulge the key tosuch figures, would be to put the rod of power within the reach of all the clever men who would read your book. All that I can tell you is that within the Solar Manwantara the number of existences or vitalactivities of the monad is fixed, but there are local variations in number in minorsystems, individual worlds, rounds, and world rings, according to circumstances. And in this connexion remember alsothat human personalities are often blotted out, while the entities whether single or compound complete all the minor and major circles of necessities under whatsoever form.


(7) So far we hope we are tolerably correct, but when we come to Man we have got muddled.


(7) And no wonder, since you were not given the correct information.


(7a) Does the monad as Man (ape-man and upwards) make one or seven rounds as above defined? We gathered the latter.

(7a) As a man-ape he performs just as many rounds and rings as every other race or class; i.e., he performs one Round and in every planet from "A" to "Z" has to go through seven chief races of ape­like man, as many sub-races, etc., etc. (See Supplementary Notes) as the above described race.

(7b) At each round does his world circle consist of seven lives in seven races (49) or of only seven lives in one race? We are not certain how you use the word race, whether there is only one race to each station of each round, i.e., one race to each world circle or whether there are seven races (with their seven branchlets and a life in each in either case) in each world circle? Nay, from your use of the words "and through each of these Man has to evolute before he passes on to the next higher race and that seven times," we are not sure that there are not seven lives in each branchlet as you call it, sub-race we will, if you like, say. So now there may be seven rounds each with seven races, each with seven sub-races, each with seven incarnations = 13 x 7 x 7 x 7 x 7 = 31, = 313 lives, or one round with seven races and seven sub-races and a life in each = 13 x 7 x 7 = 637 lives or again 4,459 lives. Please set us right here stating the normal number of lives (the exact numbers will vary owing to idiots, children, etc., not counting) and how divided.

(7b) As the above described race: i.e., at each planet — our earth included — he has to perform sevenrings through seven races (one in each) and seven multiplied by seven offshoots. There are seven root-races, and seven sub-races or offshoots. Our doctrine treats anthropology as an absurd empty dream ofthe religionists and confines itself to ethnology. It is possible that my nomenclature is faulty: you are at liberty in such a case to change it. What I call "race" you would perhaps term "stock" though sub-raceexpresses better what we mean than the word family or division of the genus homo. However, to set you right so far I will say — one life in each of the seven root-races; seven lives in each of the 49 sub-races— or 7 x 7 x 7 = 343 and add 7 more. And then a series of lives in offshoot and branchlet races; making the total incarnations of man in each station or planet 777. The principle of acceleration andretardation applies itself in such a way, as to eliminate all the inferior stocks and leave but a single superior one to make the last ring. Not much to divide over some millions of years that man passes onone planet. Let us take but one million of years — suspected and now accepted by your science — to represent man's entire term upon our earth in this Round; and allowing an average of a century foreach life, we find that whereas he has passed in all his lives upon our planet (in this Round) but 77,700 years he has been in the subjective spheres 922,300 years. Not much encouragement for the extrememodern re-incarnationists who remember their several previous existences!

Should you indulge in any calculations do not forget that we have computed above only full averagelives of consciousness and responsibility. Nothing has been said as to the failures of Nature in abortions, congenital idiots, death of children in their first septenary cycles, nor of the exceptionsof which I cannot speak. No less have you to remember that average human life varies greatly according to the Rounds. Though I am obliged to withhold information about many points yet if you should work out any of theproblems by yourself it will be my duty to tell you so. Try to solve the problem of the 777 incarnations.

(8) "M" said all mankind is in the fourth round, the fifth has not yet commenced but soon will. Was this a slip? If not, then collating this with your present remarks we gather that all mankind is on the fourth round (though in another place you seemed to say we are on the fifth round). That the highest people now on earth belong to the first sub-race of the fifth race, the majority to the seventh sub-race of the fourth race but with remnants of the other sub-races of the fourth race and the seventh sub-race of the third race. Pray set us quite right on this.

(8) "M "knows very little English and hates writing. But even I might have used very well the sameexpression. A few drops of rain do not make a monsoon though they presage it. The fifth round has not commenced on our earth and the races and sub-races of one round must not be confounded with those of another round. The fifth round mankind may be said to have "commenced" when there shall not be left on the planet which precedes ours a single man of that round and on our earth not one of the fourthround. You should know also that the casual fifth round men (and very few and scarce they are) who come in upon us as avant couriers do not beget on earth fifth round progeny. Plato and Confucius werefifth round men and our Lord a sixth round man (the mystery of his avatar is spoken of in my forthcoming letter) and not even Gautama Buddha's son was anything but a fourth round man.

Our mystic terms in their clumsy re-translation from the Sanskrit into English are as confusing to us as they are to you — especially to "M" unless in writing to you one of us takes his pen as an adept and uses it from the first word to the last, in this capacity he is quite as liable to "slips" as any other man. No, we are not in the fifth round, but fifth round men have been coming in for the last few thousand years. Butwhat is such a petty stretch of time in comparison with even one million of the several millions of years embraced in man's occupancy of earth in a single round.


Please examine carefully the few additional things I give you on the fly-leaves. Damodar has receivedorders to send you No. 3 of Terry's letters — a good material for pamphlet No. 3 of Fragments of Occult Truth.

This figure roughly represents the development of humanity on a planet — say our earth. Man evolves in seven major or root-races; 49 minor races; and the subordinate races or offshoots, the branchletraces coming from the latter are not shown.

The arrow indicates the direction taken by the evolutionary impulse.

I, II, III, IV, etc., are the seven major or root-races.

1, 2, 3, etc., are the minor races.

a, a, a, are the subordinate or offshoot races.

N, the initial and terminal point of evolution on the planet.

S, the axial point where the development equilibrates or adjusts itself in each race evolution.

E, the equatorial points where in the descending arc intellect overcomes spirituality and in theascending arc spirituality outstrips intellect.


(N.B. — The above in D.K.'s hand — the rest in K.H.'s. — A.P.S.)

P.S. — In his hurry D.J.K. has made his figure incline somewhat out of the perpendicular but it will serve as a rough memorandum. He drew it to represent development on a single planet; but I haveadded a word or two to make it apply as well (which it does) to a whole manwantaric chain of worlds.


Supplementary Notes.

Whenever any question of evolution or development in any Kingdom presents itself to you bearconstantly in mind that everything comes under the Septenary rule of series in their correspondences and mutual relation throughout nature.

In the evolution of man there is a topmost point, a bottom point, a descending arc, and an ascending arc. As it is "Spirit" which transforms itself into "matter" and (not "matter" which ascends — but)matter which resolves once more into spirit, of course the first race evolution and the last on a planet (as in each round) must be more etherial, more spiritual, the fourth or lowermost one most physical(progressively of course in each round) and at the same time — as physical intelligence is the masked manifestation of spiritual intelligence — each evoluted race in the downward arc must be more physically intelligent than its predecessor, and each in the upward arc have a more refined form of mentality commingled with spiritual intuitiveness.

The first race (or stock) of the first round after a solarmanwantara (kindly wait for my forthcoming letter before you allow yourself to be repuzzled or remuddled. It will explain a good deal) would thenbe a god man race of an almost impalpable shape, and so it is; but then comes the difficulty to the student to reconcile this fact with the evolution of man from the animal-- however high his form amongthe anthropoids. And yet it is reconcilable, for whomsoever will hold religiously to a strict analogy between the works of the two worlds, the visible and the invisible — one world, in fact, as one is working within itself so to say. Now there are — there must be "failures" in the etherial races of the many classes of Dyan Chohans or Devas as well as among men. But still as these failures are too farprogressed and spiritualized to be thrown back forcibly from their Dyan Chohanship into the vortex of a new primordial evolution through the lower kingdoms — this then happens. When a new solarsystem is to be evolved these Dyan Chohans are (remember the Hindu allegory of the Fallen Devas hurled by Siva into Andarah who are allowed by Parabrahm to consider it as an intermediate statewhere they may prepare themselves by a series of rebirths in that sphere for a higher state — a new regeneration) born in by the influx "ahead" of the elementals and remain as a latent or inactivespiritual force in the aura of the nascent world of a new system until the stage of human evolution is reached. Then Karma has reached them and they will have to accept to the last drop in the bitter cupof retribution. Then they become an activeForce, and commingle with the Elementals, or progressed entities of the pure animal kingdom to develope little by little the full type of humanity. In thiscommingling they lose their high intelligence and spirituality of Devaship to regain them in the end of the seventh ring in the seventh round.

Thus we have:

1st Round. — An ethereal being — non-intelligent, but super-spiritual. In each of the subsequent racesand sub-races and minor races of evolution he grows more and more into an encased or incarnate being, but still preponderatingly etherial. And like the animal and vegetable he develops monstrousbodies correspondential with his coarse surroundings.

2nd Round. — He is still gigantic and etherial, but growing firmer and more condensed in body — amore physical man, yet still less intelligent than spiritual; for mind is a slower and more difficult evolution than the physical frame and the mind would not develop as rapidly as the body.

3rd Round. — He has now a perfectly concrete or compacted body; at first the form of a giant ape, and more intelligent (or rather cunning) than spiritual. For in the downward arc he has now reached thepoint where his primordial spirituality is eclipsed or over-shadowed by nascent mentality. In the last half of this third round his gigantic stature decreases, his body improves in texture (perhaps themicroscope might help to demonstrate this) and he becomes a more rational being — though still more an ape than a Deva man.

4th round. — Intellect has an enormous development in this round. The dumb races will acquire our human speech, on our globe, on which from the 4th race language is perfected and knowledge inphysical things increases. At this half-way point of the fourth round, Humanity passes the axial point of the minor manwantaric circle. (Moreover, at the middle point of every major or root race evolution of each round, man passes the equator of his course on that planet, the same rule applying to the whole evolution or the seven rounds of the minor Manwantara — 7 rounds divided by 2 = 3 1/2 rounds). Atthis point then the world teems with the results of intellectual activity and spiritual decrease. In the first half of the fourth race, sciences, arts, literature and philosophy were born, eclipsed in one nation,

5th Round. — The same relative development, and the same struggle continues.

6th Round.

7th Round.

Of these we need not speak.

Table of Contents

Letter No. 15

[Transcribed from a copy in Mr. Sinnett's handwriting. K.H.'s replies are in bold type. — ED.]

From K.H. to A.O.H. Received July 10th, 1882.


(1) Does every mineral form, vegetable, plant, animal, always contain within it that entity which involves the potentiality of development into a planetary spirit? At this present day in this present earth is there such an essence or spirit or soul — the name is immaterial in every mineral, etc.


(1) Invariably; only rather call it the germ of a future entity, which it has been for ages. Take thehuman foetus. From the moment of its first planting until it completes its seventh month of gestation it repeats in miniature the mineral, vegetable, and animal cycles it passed through in its previousencasements, and only during the last two, develops its future human entity. It is completed but towards the child's seventh year. Yet it existed without any increase or decrease aeons on aeons before it worked its way onward, through and in the womb of mother nature as it works now in its earthly mother's bosom. Truly said a learned philosopher who trusts more to his intuitions than the dicta ofmodern science. "The stages of man's intra-uterine existence embody a condensed record of some of the missing pages in Earth's history." Thus you must look back at the animal, vegetable and mineralentities. You must take each entity at its starting point in the manvantaric course as the primordial cosmic atom already differentiated by the first flutter of the manvantaric life breath. For thepotentiality which develops finally in a perfected planetary spirit lurks in, is in fact that primordial cosmic atom. Drawn by its "chemical affinity" (?) to coalesce with other like atoms the aggregate sumof such united atoms will in time become a man-bearing globe after the stages of the cloud, the spiral and sphere of fire-mist and of the condensation, consolidation, shrinkage and cooling of the planet havebeen successively passed through. But mind, not every globe becomes a "man bearer." I simply state the fact without dwelling further upon it in this connection. The great difficulty in grasping the idea inthe above process lies in the liability to form more or less incomplete mental conceptions of the working of the oneelement, of its inevitable presence in every imponderable atom, and its subsequent ceaselessand almost illimitable multiplication of new centres of activity without affecting in the least its own original quantity. Let us take such an aggregation of atoms destined to form our globe and then follow,throwing a cursory look at the whole, the special work of such atoms. We will call the primordial atom A. This being not a circumscribed centre of activity but the initial point of a manwantaric whirl ofevolution, gives birth to new centres which we may term B, C, D, etc., incomputably. Each of these capital points gives birth to minor centres, a, b, c, etc. And the latter in the course of evolution andinvolution in time develops into A's, B's, C's, etc., and so form the roots or are the developing causes of new genera, species, classes, etc., ad infinitum. Now neither the primordial A and its companion atoms,nor their derived a's, b's, c's, have lost one tittle of their original force or life-essence by the evolution of their derivatives. The force there, is not transformed into something else as I have already shown in myletter, but with each development of a new centre of activity from withinitself multiplies ad infinitum without ever losing a particle of its nature in quantity or quality. Yet acquiring as it progressessomething plus in its differentiation. This "force" so-called, shows itself truly indestructible but does not correlate and is not convertible in the sense accepted by the Fellows of the R.S., but rather may besaid to grow and expand into "something else" while neither its own potentiality nor being are in the least affected by the transformation. Nor can it well be called force since the latter is but the attribute of Yin Sin (Yin Sin or the one "Form of existence" also Adi-Buddhi or Dharmakaya the mystic, universally diffused essence) when manifesting in the phenomenal world of senses namely only your oldacquaintance Fohat. See in this connexion Subba Row's article "Aryan Arhat Esoteric Doctrines" on the seven-fold principles in man; his review of your Fragments, pp. 94 and 95. The initiated Brahmincalls it (Yin Sin and Fohat) Brahman and Sakti when manifesting as that force. We will perhaps be nearer correct to call it infinite life and the source of all life visible and invisible, an essence inexhaustible ever present, in short Swabhavat. (S. in its universal application, Fohat when manifesting throughout our phenomenal world or rather the visible universe hence in its limitations). It is pravritti when active, nirvritti when passive. Call it the Sakti of Parabrahma, if you like, and say with the Adwaitees (Subba Row is one) that Parabrahm plus Maya becomes Iswar the creative principle — apower commonly called God which disappears and dies with the rest when pralaya comes. Or you may hold with the northern Buddhist philosophers and call it Adi-Buddhi the all-pervading supreme andabsolute intelligence with its periodically manifesting Divinity — "Avalokiteshvara" (a manwantaric intelligent nature crowned with humanity) — the mystic name given by us to the hosts of the DyanChohans (N.B., the solar Dyan Chohans or the host of only our solar system) taken collectively, which host represents the mother source, the aggregate amount of all the intelligences that were are or everwill be whether on our string of man-bearing planets or on any part or portion of our solar system. And this will bring you by analogy to see that in its turn Adi-Buddhi (as its very name translatedliterally implies) is the aggregate intelligence of the universal intelligences including that of the Dyan Chohans even of the highest order. That is all I dare now to tell you on this special subject, as I fear Ihave already transcended the limit. Therefore whenever I speak of humanity without specifying it you must understand that I mean not humanity of our fourth round as we see it on this speck of mud inspace but the whole host already evoluted.

Yes as described in my letter — there is but one element and it is impossible to comprehend our systembefore a correct conception of it is firmly fixed in one's mind. You must therefore pardon me if I dwell on the subject longer than really seems necessary. But unless this great primary fact is firmly graspedthe rest will appear unintelligible. This element then is the — to speak metaphysically — one sub­stratum or permanent cause of all manifestations in the phenomenal universe. The ancients speak ofthe five cognizable elements of ether, air, water, fire, earth, and of the one incognizable element (to the uninitiates) the 6th principle of the universe — call it Purush Sakti, while to speak of the seventhoutside the sanctuary was punishable with death. But these five are but the differentiated aspects of the one. As man is a seven-fold being so is the universe — the septenary microcosm being to the septenarymacrocosm but as the drop of rainwater is to the cloud from whence it dropped and whither in the course of time it will return. In that one are embraced or included so many tendencies for the evolutionof air, water, fire, etc. (from the purely abstract down to their concrete condition) and when those latter are called elements it is to indicate their productive potentialities for numberless form changes orevolution of being. Let us represent the unknown quantity as X; that quantity is the one eternal immutable principle — and A, B, C, D, E, five of the six minor principles or components of the same;viz., the principles of earth, water, air, fire and ether (akasa) following the order of their spirituality and beginning with the lowest. There is a sixth principle answering to the sixth principle Buddhi, in man (to avoid confusion remember that in viewing the question from the side of the descending scale the abstract All or eternal principle would be numerically designated as the first, and the phenomenaluniverse as the seventh, and whether belonging to man or to the universe — viewed from the other side the numerical order would be exactly reversed) but we are not permitted to name it except among theinitiates. I may however hint that it is connected with the process of the highest intellection. Let us call it N. And besides these, there is under all the activities of the phenomenal universe an energizingimpulse from X, call this Y. Algebraically stated, our equation would therefore read A+B+C+D+E+N+Y=X. Each of these six letters represents, so to speak, the spirit or abstraction of whatyou call elements (your meagre English gives me no other word). This spirit controls the entire line of evolution, around the whole manwantaric cycle in its own department. The informing, vivifying,impelling, evolving cause,behind the countless phenomenal manifestations in that department of Nature. Let us work out the idea with a single example. Take fire. D — the primal igneous principleresident in X — is the ultimate cause of every phenomenal manifestation of fire on all the globes of the chain. The proximate causes are the evoluted secondary igneous agencies which severally control the sevendescents of fire on each planet. (Every element having its seven principles and every principle its seven sub-principles and these secondary agencies before doing so, have in turn become primarycauses.) D is a septenary compound of which the highest fraction is pure spirit. As we see it on our globe it is in its coarsest, most material condition, as gross in its way as is man in his physicalencasement. In the next preceding globe to ours fire was less gross than here: on the one before that less still. And so the body of flame was more and more pure and spiritual less and less gross and materialon each antecedent planet. On the first of all in the manwantaric chain, it appeared as an almost pure objective shining — the Maha Buddhi, sixth principle of the eternal light. Our globe being at the bottomof the arc where matter exhibits itself in its grossest form along with spirit — when the fire element manifests itself on the globe next succeeding ours in the ascending arc it will be less dense than as we see it. Its spiritual quality will be identical with that which fire had on the globe preceding ours in thedescending scale; the second globe of the ascending scale will correspond in quality with that of the second anterior globe to ours in the descending scale, etc. On each globe of the chain there are sevenmanifestations of fire of which the first in order will compare as to spiritual quality with the last manifestation on the next preceding planet: the process being reversed, as you will infer, with theopposite arc. The myriad specific manifestations of these six universal elements are in their turn but the offshoots, branches or branchlets of the one single primordial "Tree of Life."

Take Darwin's genealogical tree of life of the human race and others and bearing ever in mind the wise old adage, "As below so above" — that is the universal system of correspondences — try to understandby analogy. Thus will you see that in this day on this present earth in every mineral, etc., there is such a spirit. I will say more. Every grain of sand, every boulder or crag of granite, is that spirit crystallizedor petrified. You hesitate. Take a primer of geology and see what science affirms there about the formation and growth of minerals. What is the origin of all the rocks, whether sedimentary or igneous.Take a piece of granite or sandstone and you find one composed of crystals, the other of grains of various stones (organic rocks or stones formed out of the remains of once living plants and animals, willnot serve our present purpose: they are the relics of subsequent evolutions while we are concerned but with the primordial ones). Now sedimentary and igneous rocks are composed, the former of sandgravel and mud, the latter of lava. We have then but to trace the origin of the two. What do we find? We find that one was compounded of three elements or more accurately three several manifestations ofthe one element, — earth, water and fire, and that the other was similarly compounded (though under different physical conditions) out of cosmic matter — the imaginary materia prima itself one of the manifestations (6th principle) of the one element. How then can we doubt that a mineral contains in it a spark of the One as everything else in this objective nature does?


(2) When the pralaya commences what becomes of the Spirit that has not worked its way up to man?


(2) . . . The period necessary for the completion of the seven local or earthly — or shall we call it —globe-rings (not to speak of the seven Rounds in the minor manwantaras followed by their seven minor pralayas) — the completion of the so-called mineral cycle is immeasurably longer than that of anyother kingdom. As you may infer by analogy every globe before it reaches its adult period, has to pass through a formation period — also septenary. Law in Nature is uniform and the conception, formation,birth, progress and development of the child differs from those of the globe only in magnitude. The globe has two periods of teething and of capillature — its first rocks which it also sheds to make roomfor new — and its ferns and mosses before it gets forest. As the atoms in the body change [every] seven years so does the globe renew its strata every seven cycles. A section of a part of Cape Breton coalfieldsshows seven ancient soils with remains of as many forests, and could one dig as deep once more seven other sections would be found following. . . .


There are three kinds of pralayas and manwantara: —

 The universal or Maha pralaya and manwantara.

 The solar pralaya and manwantara.

 The minor pralaya and manwantara.


When the pralaya No. 1 is finished the universal manwantara begins. Then the whole universe must be re-evoluted de novo. When the pralaya of a solar system comes it affects that solar system only. A solarpralaya = 7 minor pralayas. The minor pralayas of No. 3 concern but our little string of globes, whether man-bearing or not. To such a string our Earth belongs.

Besides this within a minor pralaya there is a condition of planetary rest or as the astronomers say "death," like that of our present moon — in which the rocky body of the planet survives but the lifeimpulse has passed out. For example. Let us imagine that our earth is one of a group of seven planets or man-bearing worlds more or less eliptically arranged. Our earth being at the exact lower central point Now the life impulse reaches "A" or rather that which is destined to become "A" and which so far isbut cosmic dust. A centre is formed in the nebulous matter of the condensation of the solar dust disseminated through space and a series of three evolutions invisible to the eye of flesh occur insuccession, viz., three kingdoms of elementals or nature forces are evoluted: in other words the animal soul of the future globe is formed; or as a Kabalist will express it, the gnomes, the salamanders, and theundines are created. The correspondence between a mother-globe and her child-man may be thus worked out. Both have their seven principles. In the Globe, the elementals (of which there are in allseven species) form (a) a gross body, (b) her fluidic double (linga sariram), (c) her life principle (jiva);

(d) her fourth principle kama rupa is formed by her creative impulse working from centre tocircumference; (e) her fifth principle (animal soul or Manas, physical intelligence) is embodied in the vegetable (in germ) and animal kingdoms; (f) her sixth principle (or spiritual soul, Buddhi) is man (g)and her seventh principle (atma) is in a film of spiritualized akasa that surrounds her. The three evolutions completed: palpable globe begins to form. The mineral kingdom fourth in the whole series,but first in this stage leads the way. Its deposits are at first vaporous soft and plastic, only becoming hard and concrete in the seventh ring. When this ring is completed it projects its essence to globe B —which is already passing through the preliminary stages of formation and mineral evolution begins on that globe. At this juncture the evolution of the vegetable kingdom commences on globe A. When thelatter has made its seventh ring its essence passes on to globe B. At that time the mineral essence moves to globe C and the germs of the animal kingdom enter A. When the animal has seven rings there, its lifeprinciple goes to globe B, and the essences of vegetable and mineral move on. Then comes man on A, an ethereal foreshadowing of the compact being he is destined to become on our earth. Evolving sevenparent races with many offshoots of sub-races, he, like the preceding kingdoms completes his seven rings and is then transferred successively to each of the globes onward to Z. From the first man has allthe seven principles included in him in germ but none are developed. If we compare him to a baby we will be right; no one has ever, in the thousands of ghost stories current, seen the ghost of an infant,though the imagination of a loving mother may have suggested to her the picture of her lost babe in dreams. And this is very suggestive. In each of the rounds he makes one of the principles develop fully.In the first round his consciousness on our earth is dull and but feeble and shadowy, something like that of an infant. When he reaches our earth in the second round he has become responsible in adegree, in the third he becomes so entirely. At every stage and every round his development keeps pace, with the globe on which he is. The descending arc from A to our earth is called the shadowy, theascending to Z the "luminous" . . . We men of the fourth round are already reaching the latter half of the fifth race of our fourth round humanity, while the men (the few earlier comers) of the fifth round,though only in their first race (or rather class), are yet immeasurably higher than we are — spiritually if not intellectually; since with the completion or full development of this fifth principle (intellectualsoul) they have come nearer than we have, are closer in contact with their sixth principle Buddhi. Of course many are the differentiated individuals even in the fourth r. as germs of principles are notequally developed in all, but such is the rule.

. . . Man comes on globe "A" after the other kingdoms have gone on. (Dividing our kingdoms intoseven, the last four are what exoteric science divides into three. To this we add the kingdom of man or the Deva kingdom. The respective entities of these we divide into germinal, instinctive, semi-conscious,and fully conscious). . . . When all kingdoms have reached globe Z they will not move forward to re­enter A in precedence of man, but under a law of retardation operative from the central point — orearth — to Z and which equilibrates a principle of acceleration in the descending arc — they will have just finished their respective evolution of genera and species, when man reaches his highestdevelopment on globe Z — in this or any round. The reason for it is found in the enormously greater time required by them to develop their infinite varieties as compared with man; the relative speed ofdevelopment in the rings therefore naturally increases as we go up the scale from the mineral. But these different rates are so adjusted by man stopping longer in the inter-planetary spheres of rest, for weal orwoe — that all kingdoms finish their work simultaneously on the planet Z. For example, on our globe we see the equilibrating law manifesting. From the first appearance of man whether speechless or not to his present one as a fourth and the coming fifth round being the structural intention of his organization has not radically changed. Ethnological characteristics however varied, affecting in no way man as a human being. The fossil of man or his skeleton whether of the period of that mammalian branch of which he forms the crown, whether cyclop or dwarf can be still recognised at a glance as arelic of man. Plants and animals meanwhile have become more and more unlike what they were. . . . The scheme with its septenary details would be incomprehensible to man had he not the power as thehigher Adepts have proved of prematurely developing his 6th and 7th senses — those which will be the natural endowment of all in the corresponding rounds. Our Lord Buddha — a 6th r. man — would nothave appeared in our epoch, great as were his accumulated merits in previous rebirths but for a mystery. . . . Individuals cannot outstrip the humanity of their round any further than by one remove,for it is mathematically impossible — you say (in effect): if the fountain of life flows ceaselessly there should be men of all rounds on the earth at all times, etc. The hint about planetary rest may dispel the misconception on this head.

When man is perfected qua a given round on Globe A he disappears thence (as had certain vegetablesand animals). By degrees this Globe loses its vitality and finally reaches the moon stage, i.e., death, and so remains while man is making his seven rings on Z and passing his inter-cyclic period before startingon his next round. So with each Globe in turn.

And now as man when completing his seventh ring upon A has but begun his first on Z and as A dieswhen he leaves it for B, etc., and as he must also remain in the inter-cyclic sphere after Z, as he has between every two planets, until the impulse again thrills the chain, clearly no one can be more thanone round ahead of his kind. And Buddha only forms an exception by virtue of the mystery. We have fifth round men among us because we are in the latter half of our septenary earth ring. In the first halfthis could not have happened. The countless myriads of our fourth round humanity who have outrun us and completed their seven rings on Z, have had time to pass their inter-cyclic period begin their newround and work on to globe D (ours). But how can there be men of the 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 6th and 7th rounds? We represent the first three and the sixth can only come at rare intervals and prematurely likeBuddhas (only under prepared conditions) and that the last-named the seventh are not yet evolved! We have traced man out of a round into the Nirvanic state between Z and A. A was left in the last round dead. As the new round begins it catches the new influx of life, reawakens to vitality and begets all its kingdoms of a superior order to the last. After this has been repeated seven times comes a minorpralaya; the chain of globes are not destroyed by disintegration and dispersion of their particles but pass in abscondito. From this they will re-emerge in their turn during the next septenary period. Withinone solar period (of a p. and m.) occur seven such minor periods, in an ascending scale of progressive development. To recapitulate there are in the round seven planetary or earth rings for each kingdomand one obscuration of each planet. The minor manwantara is composed of seven rounds, 49 rings and 7 obscurations, the solar period of 49 rounds, etc.

The periods with pralaya and manwantara are called by Dikshita "Surya manwantaras and pralayas." Thought is baffled in speculating how many of our solar pralayas must come before the great Cosmicnight — but that will come.

. . . In the minor pralayas there is no starting de novo — only resumption of arrested activity. Thevegetable and animal kingdoms which at the end of the minor manwantara had reached only a partial development are not destroyed. Their life or vital entities, call some of them nati if you will — find alsotheir corresponding night and rest — they also have a Nirvana of their own. And why should they not, these foetal and infant entities. They are all like ourselves begotten of the one element. . . . As we haveour Dyan Chohans so have they in their several kingdoms elemental guardians and are as well taken care of in the mass as is humanity in the mass. The one element not only fills space and isspace, butinterpenetrates every atom of cosmic matter.

When strikes the hour of the solar pralaya — though the process of man's advance on his last seventhround is precisely the same, each planet instead of merely passing out of the visible into the invisible as he quits it in turn is annihilated. With the beginning of the seventh Round of the seventh minormanwantara, every kingdom having now reached its last cycle, there remains on each planet after the exit of man but the maya of once living and existing forms. With every step he takes on the descending and ascending arcs as he moves on from Globe to Globe the planet left behind becomes an emptychrysaloidal case. At his departure there is an outflow from every kingdom of its entities. Waiting to pass into higher forms in due time they are nevertheless liberated: for to the day of that evolution theywill rest in their lethargic sleep in space until again energized into life in the new solar manwantara. The old elementals — will rest until they are called to become in their turn the bodies of mineral,vegetable and animal entities (on another and a higher string of globes) on their way to become human entities (see Isis) while the germinal entities of the lowest forms, and in that time of general perfectionthere will remain but few of such — will hang in space like drops of water suddenly turned to icicles. They will thaw at the first hot breath of a solar manwantara and form the soul of the future globes. . . .The slow development of the vegetable kingdom provided for by the longer inter-planetary rest of man. . . . When the solar pralaya comes the whole purified humanity merges into Nirvana and from thatinter-solar Nirvana will be reborn in higher systems. The string of worlds is destroyed and vanishes like a shadow from the wall in the extinguishment of light. We have every indication that at this verymoment such a solar pralaya is taking place while there are two minor ones ending somewhere.

At the beginning of the solar manwantara the hitherto subjective elements of the material world nowscattered in cosmic dust — receiving their impulse from the new Dyan Chohans of the new solar system (the highest of the old ones having gone higher) — will form into primordial ripples of life andseparating into differentiating centres of activity combine in a graduated scale of seven stages of evolution. Like every other orb of space our Earth has before obtaining its ultimate materiality — andnothing now in this world can give you an idea of what this state of matter is — to pass through a gamut of seven stages of density. I say gamut advisedly since the diatonic scale best affords anillustration of the perpetual rythmic motion of the descending and ascending cycle of Swabhavat — graduated as it is by tones and semi-tones.

You have among the learned members of your society one Theosophist who without familiarity with our occult doctrine, has yet intuitively grasped from scientific data the idea of a solar pralaya and itsmanwantara in their beginnings. I mean the celebrated French astronomer Flammarion — "La Resurrection et la Fin des Mondes" (Chapter 4 res.). He speaks like a true seer. The facts are as hesurmises with slight modifications. In consequence of the secular refrigeration (old age rather and loss of vital power), solidification and desiccation of the globes, the earth arrives at a point when it begins tobe a relaxed conglomerate. The period of child-bearing is gone by. The progeny are all nurtured, its term of life is finished. Hence "its constituent masses cease to obey those laws of cohesion andaggregation which held them together." And becoming like a cadaver which abandoned to the work of destruction would leave each molecule composing it free to separate itself from the body for ever toobey in future the sway of new influences. The attraction of the moon (would that he could know the full extent of its pernicious influence) would itself undertake the task of demolition by producing a tidalwave of earth particles instead of an aqueous tide.

His mistake is that he believes a long time must be devoted to the ruin of the solar system: we are toldthat it occurs in the twinkling of an eye but not without many preliminary warnings. Another error is the supposition that the earth will fall into the sun. The sun itself is first to disintegrate at the solarpralaya.

. . . Fathom the nature and essence of the sixth principle of the universe and man and you will havefathomed the greatest mystery in this our world — and why not — are you not surrounded by it? What are its familiar manifestations, mesmerism, Od force, etc. — all different aspects of one force capable ofgood and evil applications.

The degrees of an Adept's initiation mark the seven stages at which he discovers the secret of thesevenfold principles in nature and man and awakens his dormant powers.

Table of Contents

Letter No. 16

[Mr. Sinnett's queries to which K.H. replies in this letter are printed in bold type. — ED.]

(1) The remarks appended to a letter in the last Theosophist,page 226, Col. 1, strike me as veryimportant and as qualifying — I do not say contradicting — a good deal of what we have hitherto been told in re Spiritualism.

We had heard already of a spiritual condition of life in which the redeveloped Ego enjoyed a conscious existence for a time before reincarnation in another world; but that branch of the subject has hithertobeen slurred over. Now some explicit statements are made about it; and these suggest further enquiries.

In the Deva Chan (I have lent my Theosophist to a friend; and have not got it at hand to refer to but thatif I remember rightly is the name given to the state of spiritual beatitude described) the new Ego retains complete recollection of his life on earth apparently. Is that so or is there any misunderstandingon that point on my part?

(1) The Deva-Chan, or land of "Sukhavati," is allegorically described by our Lord Buddha himself. What he said may be found in the Shan-Mun-yi-Tung. Says Tathagata: —

"Many thousand myriads of systems of worlds beyond this (ours) there is a region of Bliss called Sukhavati . . . . This region is encircled with seven rows of railings, seven rows of vast curtains, seven rows of waving trees; this holy abode of Arahats is governed by the Tathagatas (Dhyan Chohans) and is possessed by the Bodhisatwas. It hath seven precious lakes, in the midst of which flow crystaline waters having 'seven and one' properties, or distinctive qualities (the 7 principles emanating from the ONE). This, O, Sariputra is the 'Deva Chan.' Its divine Udarnbara flower casts a root in the shadow of every earth, and blossoms for all those who reach it. Those born in the blessed region are truly felicitous, there are no more griefs or sorrows in that cycle for them. . . . Myriads of Spirits (Lha) resort there for rest and then return to their own regions. (1) Again, O, Sariputra, in that land of joy many who are born in it are Avaivartyas . . .(2) etc., etc.


(2) Now except in the fact that the duration of existence in the Deva Chan is limited, there is a very close resemblance between that condition and the Heaven of ordinary religion (omitting anthropomorphicideas of God).


(2) Certainly the new Ego once that it is reborn, retains for a certain time — proportionate to its Earth-life, a "complete recollection of his life on earth." (3) (See your preceding query.) But it can never return on earth, from the Deva Chan, nor has the latter — even omitting all "anthropomorphic ideas of God" — any resemblance to the paradise or heaven of any religion, and it is H.P.B.'s literary fancy that suggested to her the wonderful comparison.


(3) Now the question of importance — is who goes to Heaven — or Deva Chan? Is this condition only attained by the few who are very good, or by the many who are not very bad, — after the lapse in theircase of a longer unconscious incubation or gestation.


(3) "Who goes to Deva Chan?" The personal Ego of course, but beatified, purified, holy. Every Ego — the combination of the sixth and seventh principles — which, after the period of unconscious gestation is reborn into the Deva-Chan, is of necessity as innocent and pure as a new-born babe. The fact of his being reborn at all, shows the preponderance of good over evil in his old personality. And while the Karma (of evil) steps aside for the time being to follow him in his future earth-reincamation, he brings along with him but the Karma of his good deeds, words, and thoughts into this Deva-Chan. "Bad" is a relative term for us — as you were told more than once before, — and the Law of Retribution is the only law that never errs. Hence all those who have not slipped down into the mire of unredeemable sin and bestiality — go to the Deva Chan. They will have to pay for their sins, voluntary and involuntary, later on. Meanwhile, they are rewarded; receive the effects of the causes produced by them.


Of course it is a state, one, so to say, of intense selfishness, during which an Ego reaps the reward of his unselfishness on earth. He is completely engrossed in the bliss of all his personal earthly affections, preferences and thoughts, and gathers in the fruit of his meritorious actions. No pain, no grief nor even the shadow of a sorrow comes to darken the bright horizon of his unalloyed happiness: for, it is a state of perpetual "Maya" . . . Since the conscious perception of one's personality on earth is but an evanescent dream that sense will be equally that of a dream in the Deva-Chan — only a hundred fold intensified. So much so, indeed, that the happy Ego is unable to see through the veil, the evils, sorrows and woes to which those it loved on earth may be subjected to. It lives in that sweet dream with its loved ones — whether gone before, or yet remaining on earth; it has them near itself, as happy, as blissful and as innocent as the disembodied dreamer himself; and yet, apart from rare visions, the denizens of our gross planet feel it not. It is in this, during such a condition of complete Maya that the Souls or astral Egos of pure, loving sensitives, labouring under the same illusion, think their loved ones come down to them on earth, while it is their own Spirits that are raised towards those in the Deva-Chan. Many of the subjective spiritual communications — most of them when the sensitives are pure minded — are real; but it is most difficult for the uninitiated medium to fix in his mind the true and correct pictures of what he sees and hears. Some of the phenomena called psychography (though more rarely) are also real. The spirit of the sensitive getting odylised, so to say, by the aura of the Spirit in the Deva-Chan, becomes for a few minutes that departed personality, and writes in the hand writing of the latter, in his language and in his thoughts, as they were during his life time. The two spirits become blended in one; and, the preponderance of one over the other during such phenomena determines the preponderance of personality in the characteristics exhibited in such writings, and "trance speaking." What you call "rapport" is in plain fact an identity of molecular vibration between the astral part of the incarnate medium and the astral part of the disincarnate personality. I have just noticed an article on smell by some English Professor (which I will cause to be reviewed in the Theosophist and say a few words), and find in it something that applies to our case. As, in music, two different sounds may be in accord and separately distinguishable, and this harmony or discord depends upon the synchronous vibrations and complementary periods; so there is rapport between medium and "control" when their astral molecules move in accord. And the question whether the communication shall reflect more of the one personal idiosyncracy, or the other, is determined by the relative intensity of the two sets of vibrations in the compound wave of Akasa. The less identical the vibratory impulses the more mediumistic and less spiritual will be the message. So then, measure your medium's moral state by that of the alleged "controlling" Intelligence, and your tests of genuineness leave nothing to be desired.


(4) Or are there great varieties of condition within the limits, so to speak, of Deva Chan, so that an appropriate state is dropped into by all, from which they will be born into lower or higher conditions inthe next world of causes. It is no use multiplying hypotheses. We want some information to go upon.


(4) Yes; there are great varieties in the Deva-Chan states, and, it is all as you say. As many varieties of bliss, as on earth there are shades of perception and of capability to appreciate such reward. It is an ideated paradise, in each case of the Ego's own making, and by him filled with the scenery, crowded with the incidents, and thronged with the people he would expect to find in such a sphere of compensative bliss. And it is that variety which guides the temporary personal Ego into the current which will lead him to be reborn in a lower or higher condition in the next world of causes. Everything is so harmoniously adjusted in nature — especially in the subjective world, that no mistake can be ever committed by the Tathagatas — or Dhyan Chohans — who guide the impulses.


(5) On the face of the idea, a purely spiritual state would only be enjoyable to the entities highlyspiritualized in this life. But there are myriads of very good people (morally) who are not spiritualized at all. How can they be fitted to pass, with their recollections of this life from a material to a spiritualcondition of existence.


(5) It is "a spiritual condition" only as contrasted with our own grossly "material condition," and, as already stated — it is such degrees of spirituality that constitute and determine the great "varieties" of conditions within the limits of Deva-Chan. A mother from a savage tribe is not less happy than a mother from a regal palace, with her lost child in her arms; and although as actual Egos, children prematurely dying before the perfection of their septenary Entity do not find their way to Deva-Chan, yet all the same the mother's loving fancy finds her children there, without one missing that her heart yearns for. Say — it is but a dream, but after all what is objective life itself but a panorama of vivid unrealities? The pleasures realized by a Red Indian in his "happy hunting grounds" in that Land of Dreams is not less intense than the ecstasy felt by a connoisseur who passes aeons in the wrapt delight of listening to divine Symphonies by imaginary angelic choirs and orchestras. As it is no fault of the former, if born a "savage" with an instinct to kill — though it caused the death of many an innocent animal — why, if with it all, he was a loving father, son, husband, why should he not also enjoy his share of reward? The case would be quite different if the same cruel acts had been done by an educated and civilized person, from a mere love of sport. The savage in being reborn would simply take a low place in the scale, by reason of his imperfect moral development; while the Karma of the other would be tainted with moral delinquency. . . .

Every one but that ego which, attracted by its gross magnetism, falls into the current that will draw it into the "planet of Death" — the mental as well as physical satellite of our earth — is fitted to pass into a relative "spiritual" condition adjusted to his previous condition in life and mode of thought. To my knowledge and recollection H.P.B. explained to Mr. Hume that man's sixth principle, as something purely spiritual could not exist, or have conscious being in the Deva-Chan, unless it assimilated some of the more abstract and pure of the mental attributes of the fifth principle or animal Soul: its manas (mind) and memory. When man dies his second and third principles die with him; the lower triad disappears, and the fourth, fifth, sixth and seventh principles form the surviving Quaternary. (Read again page 6 in Fragments of O.T.) (4) Thenceforth it is a "death" struggle between the Upper and Lower dualities. If the upper wins, the sixth, having attracted to itself the quintessence of Good from the fifth — its nobler affections, its saintly (though they be earthly) aspirations, and the most Spiritualised portions of its mind — follows its divine elder (the 7th) into the "Gestation" State; and the fifth and fourth remain in association as an empty shell — (the expression is quite correct) — to roam in the earth's atmosphere, with half the personal memory gone, and the more brutal instincts fully alive for a certain period — an "Elementary" in short. This is the "angel guide" of the average medium. If, on the other hand, it is the Upper Duality which is defeated, there, it is the fifth principle that assimilates all that there may be left of personal recollection and perceptions of its personal individuality in the sixth. But, with all this additional stock, it will not remain in Kama-Loka — "the world of Desire" or our Earth's atmosphere. In a very short time like a straw floating within the attraction of the vortices and pits of the Maelstrom, it is caught up and drawn into the great whirlpool of human Egos; while the sixth and seventh — now a purely Spiritual, individual MONAD, with nothing left in it of the late personality, having no regular "gestation" period to pass through: (since there is no purified personal Ego to be reborn), after a more or less prolonged period of unconscious Rest in the boundless Space — will find itself reborn in another personality on the next planet. When arrives the period of "Full Individual Consciousness" — which precedes that of Absolute Consciousness in the Pari-Nirvana — this lost personal life becomes as a torn out page in the great Book of Lives, without even a disconnected word left to mark its absence. The purified monad will neither perceive nor remember it in the series of its past rebirths — which it would had it gone to the "World of Forms" (rupa-loka) — and its retrospective glance will not perceive even the slightest sign to indicate that it had been. The light of Samma-Sambuddh — ". . . that light which shines beyond our mortal ken

The line of all the lives in all the worlds " —

throws no ray upon that personal life in the series of lives foregone.

To the credit of mankind, I must say, that such an utter obliteration of an existence from the tablets of Universal Being does not occur often enough to make a great percentage. In fact, like the much mentioned "congenital idiot" such a thing is a lusus naturae — an exception, not the rule.


(6) And how is a spiritual existence in which everything has merged into the sixth principle, compatible with that consciousness of individual and personal material life which must be attributed to the Ego inDeva-Chan if he retains his earthly consciousness as stated in the Theosophist Note.


(6) The question is now sufficiently explained, I believe: the sixth and seventh principles apart from the rest constitute the eternal imperishable, but also unconscious "Monad." To awaken in it to life the latent consciousness, especially that of personal individuality, requires the monad plus the highest attributes of the fifth — the "animal Soul"; and it is that which makes the ethereal Ego that lives and enjoys bliss in the Deva-Chan. Spirit, or the unalloyed emanations of the ONE — the latter forming with the seventh and sixth principles the highest triad — neither of the two emanations are capable of assimilating but that which is good, pure and holy; hence, no sensual, material or unholy recollection can follow the purified memory of the Ego to the region of Bliss. The Karma for these recollections of evil deeds and thought will reach the Ego when it changes its personality in the following world of causes. The Monad, or the "Spiritual Individuality," remains untainted in all cases. "No sorrow or Pain for those born there (in the Rupa-Loka of Deva-Chan); for this is the Pure-land. All the regions in Space possess such lands (Sakwala), but this land of Bliss is the most pure." In the Djnana Prasthana Shaster, it is said: "by personal purity and earnest meditation, we overleap the limits of the World of Desire, and enter in the World of Forms."


(7) The period of gestation between Death and Deva-Chan has hitherto been conceived by me at allevents as very long. Now it is said to be in some cases only a few days, in no cases (it is implied) more than a few years. This seems plainly stated, but I ask if it can be explicitly confirmed because it is apoint on which so much turns.


(7) Another fine example of the habitual disorder in which Mrs. H.P.B.'s mental furniture is kept. She talks of "Bardo" and does not even say to her readers what it means! As in her writing room confusion is ten times confounded, so in her mind are crowded ideas piled in such a chaos that when she wants to express them the tail peeps out before the head. "Bardo" has nothing to do with the duration of time in the case you are referring to. "Bardo" is the period between death and rebirth — and may last from a few years to a kalpa. It is divided into three sub-periods (1) when the Ego delivered of its mortal coil enters into Kama-Loka (5) (the abode of Elementaries); (2) when it enters into its "Gestation State"; (3) when it is reborn in the Rupa-Loka of Deva-Chan. Sub-period (1) may last from a few minutes to a number of years — the phrase "a few years" becoming puzzling and utterly worthless without a more complete explanation; Sub-period (2) is "very long"; as you say, longer sometimes than you may even imagine, yet proportionate to the Ego's spiritual stamina; Sub-period (3) lasts in proportion to the good KARMA, after which the monad is again reincarnated. TheAgama Sutra saying: — "in all these Rupa-Lokas, the Devas (Spirits) are equally subjected to birth, decay, old age, and death," means only that an Ego is borne thither then begins fading out and finally "dies," i.e., falls into that unconscious condition which precedes rebirth; and ends the Sloka with these words — "As the devas emerge from these heavens, they enter the lower world again:" i.e, they leave a world of bliss to be reborn in a world of causes.


(8) In that case, and assuming that Deva-Chan is not solely the heritage of adepts and persons almost aselevated, there is a condition of existence tantamount to Heaven actually going on, from which the life of Earth may be watched by an immense number of those who have gone before! (9) And for how long?Does this state of spiritual beatitude endure for years? for decades? for centuries?


(8) Most emphatically "the Deva-Chan is not solely the heritage of adepts," and most decidedly there is a "heaven" — if you must use this astro-geographical Christian term — for "an immense number of those who have gone before." But "the life of Earth" can be watched by none of these, for reasons of the Law of Bliss plus Maya, already given.


(9) For years, decades, centuries and milleniums, oftentimes — multiplied by something more. It all depends upon the duration of Karma. Fill with oil Den's little cup, and a city Reservoir of water, and lighting both see which burns the longer. The Ego is the wick and Karma the oil: the difference in the quantity of the latter (in the cup and the reservoir) suggesting to you the great difference in the duration of various Karmas. Every effect must be proportionate to the cause. And, as man's terms of incarnate existence bear but a small proportion to his periods of inter-natal existence in the manvantaric cycle, so the good thoughts, words, and deeds of any one of these "lives" on a globe are causative of effects, the working out of which requires far more time than the evolution of the causes occupied. Therefore, when you read in the Jats and other fabulous stories of the Buddhist Scriptures that this or the other good action was rewarded by Kalpas of several figures of bliss, do not smile at the absurd exaggeration, but bear in mind what I have said. From a small seed, you know, sprung a tree whose life endures now for 22 centuries; I mean the Anuradha-pura Bo tree. Nor must you laugh, if ever you come across Pindha-Dhana or any other Buddhist Sutra and read: "Between the Kama­Loka and the Rupa-Loka there is a locality, the dwelling of 'Mara' (Death). This Mara filled with passion and lust, destroys all virtuous principles, as a stone grinds corn. (6) His palace is 7000 yojanas square, and is surrounded by a seven-fold wall," for you will feel now more prepared to understand the allegory. Also, when Beal, or Burnouf, or Rhys Davids in the innocence of their Christian and materialistic souls indulge in such translations as they generally do, we do not bear them malice for their commentaries, since they cannot know any better. But what can the following mean: — "The names of the Heavens" (a mistranslation; lokas are not heavens but localities or abodes) of Desire, Kama-Loka — so called, because the beings who occupy them are subject to desires of eating, drinking, sleeping and love. They are otherwise called the abodes of the five (?) orders of sentient creatures — Devas, men, asuras, beasts, demons" (Lantan Sutra, trans. by S. Beal). They mean simply that, had the reverend translator been acquainted with the true doctrine a little better — he would have (1) divided the Devas into two classes — and called them the "Rupa-devas" and the "Arupa-devas" (the "form" — or objective, and the "formless" or subjective Dhyan Chohans; and (2) — would have done the same for his class of "men," since there are shells, and "Mara-rupas" — i.e. bodies doomed to annihilation. All these are:


(1) "Rupa-devas" — Dhyan Chohans (7) having forms;

 (2) "Arupa-devas"[— Dhyan Chohans] having no forms

 {[above are] Ex-men.  

(3) "Pisachas" — (two-principled) ghosts.  

(4) "Mara-rupa" — Doomed to death (3 principled).  

(5) Asuras — Elementals — having human form  

(6) Beasts — [Elementals] 2nd class — animal Elementals  

{[Asuras and Beasts are] Future men.  

(7) Rakshasas (Demons) Souls or Astral Forms of sorcerers; men who have reached the apex of knowledge in the forbidden art. Dead or alive they have, so to say cheated nature; but it is only temporary — until our planet goes into obscuration, after which they have nolens volens to be annihilated.


It is these seven groups that form the principal divisions of the Dwellers of the subjective world around us. It is in stock No. 1, that are the intelligent Rulers of this world of Matter, and who, with all this intelligence are but the blindly obedient instruments of the ONE; the active agents of a Passive Principle.

And thus are misinterpreted and mistranslated nearly all our Sutras; yet even under that confused jumble of doctrines and words, for one who knows even superficially the true doctrine, there is firm ground to stand upon. Thus, for instance in enumerating the seven lokas of the "Kama-Loka" the Avatamsaka Sutra, gives as the seventh, the "Territory of Doubt." I will ask you to remember the name as we will have to speak of it hereafter. Every such "world" within the Sphere of Effects has a Tathagata, or "Dhyan Chohan" — to protect and watch over, not to interfere with it. Of course, of all men, spiritualists will be the first to reject and throw off our doctrines to "the limbo of exploded superstitions." Were we to assure them that every one of their "Summerlands" had seven boarding houses in it, with the same number of "Spirit Guides" to "boss" in them, and call these "angels," Saint Peters, Johns, and St. Ernests, they would welcome us with open arms. But whoever heard of Tathagats and Dhyan Chohans, Asuras and Elementals? Preposterous! Still, we are happily allowed — by our friends (Mr. Eglinton, at least) — to be possessed "of a certain knowledge of Occult Sciences" (Vide "Light"). And thus, even this mite of "Knowledge" is at your service, and is now helping me to answer your following question:

Is there any intermediate condition between the spiritual beatitude of Deva-Chan, and the forlornshadow life of the only half conscious elementary reliquiaeof human beings who have lost their sixth principle. Because if so that might give a locus standi in imagination to the Earnests and Joeys of thespiritual mediums — the better sort of controlling "spirits." If so surely that must be a very populous

Alas, no; my friend; not that I know of. From "Sukhavati" down to the "Territory of Doubt" there is a variety of Spiritual States; but I am not aware of any such "intermediate condition." I have told you of the Sakwalas (though I cannot be enumerating them since it would be useless); and even of Avitchi — the "Hell" from which there is no return (7a), and I have no more to tell about. "The forlorn shadow" has to do the best it can. As soon as it has stepped outside the Kama-Loka, and crossed the "Golden Bridge" leading to the "Seven Golden Mountains" the Ego can confabulate no more, with easy-going mediums. No "Earnest" or "Joey" has ever returned from the Rupa Loka — let alone the Arupa-Loka — to hold sweet intercourse with mortals.

Of course there is a "better sort" of reliquiae; and the "shells" or the "earth-walkers" as they are here called, are not necessarily all bad. But even those that are good, are made bad for the time being by mediums. The "shells" may well not care, since they have nothing to lose, anyhow. But there is another kind of "Spirits," we have lost sight of: the suicides and those killed by accident. Both kinds can communicate, and both have to pay dearly for such visits. And now I have again to explain what I mean. Well, this class is the one that the French Spiritists call — "les Esprits Souffrants." They are an exception to the rule, as they have to remain within the earth's attraction, and in its atmosphere — the Kama-Loka -- till the very last moment of what would have been the natural duration of their lives. In other words, that particular wave of life-evolution must run on to its shore. But it is a sin and cruelty to revive their memory and intensify their suffering by giving them a chance of living an artificial life; a chance to overload their Karma, by tempting them into opened doors, viz., mediums and sensitives, for they will have to pay roundly for every such pleasure. I will explain. The suicides, who, foolishly hoping to escape life, found themselves still alive, — have suffering enough in store for them from that very life. Their punishment is in the intensity of the latter. Having lost by the rash act their seventh and sixth principles, though not for ever, as they can regain both — instead of accepting their punishment, and taking their chances of redemption, they are often made to regret life and tempted to regain a hold upon it by sinful means. In the Kama-Loka, the land of intense desires, they can gratify their earthly yearnings but through a living proxy; and by so doing, at the expiration of the natural term, they generally lose their monad for ever. As to the victims of accident — these fare still worse. Unless they were so good and pure, as to be drawn immediately within the Akasic Samadhi, i.e. to fall into a state of quiet slumber, a sleep full of rosy dreams, during which, they have no recollection of the accident, but move and live among their familiar friends and scenes, until their natural life-term is finished, when they find themselves born in the Deva-Chan — a gloomy fate is theirs. Unhappy shades, if sinful and sensual they wander about — (not shells, for their connection with their two higher principles is not quite broken) — until their death-hour comes. Cut off in the full flush of earthly passions which bind them to familiar scenes, they are enticed by the opportunities which mediums afford, to gratify them vicariously. They are the Pisachas, the Incubi, and Succubi of mediaeval times. The demons of thirst, gluttony, lust and avarice, — elementaries of intensified craft, wickedness and cruelty; provoking their victims to horrid crimes, and revelling in their commission! They not only ruin their victims, but these psychic vampires, borne along by the torrent of their hellish impulses, at last, at the fixed close of their natural period of life — they are carried out of the earth's aura into regions where for ages they endure exquisite suffering and end with entire destruction.

But if the victim of accident or violence, be neither very good, nor very bad — an average person — then this may happen to him. A medium who attracts him, will create for him the most undesirable of things: a new combination of Skandhas and a new and evil Karma. But let me give you a clearer idea of what I mean by Karma in this case.

In connection with this, let me tell you before, that since you seem so interested with the subject, you can do nothing better than to study the two doctrines — of Karma and Nirvana — as profoundly as you can. Unless you are thoroughly well acquainted with the two tenets — the double key to the metaphysics of Abidharma — you will always find yourself at sea in trying to comprehend the rest. We have several sorts of Karma and Nirvana in their various applications — to the Universe, the world, Devas, Buddhas, Bodhisatwas, men and animals — the second including its seven kingdoms. Karma and Nirvana are but two of the seven great MYSTERIES of Buddhist metaphysics; and but four of the seven are known to the best orientalists, and that very imperfectly.

If you ask a learned Buddhist priest what is Karma? — he will tell you that Karma is what a Christian might call Providence (in a certain sense only) and a Mahomedan — Kismet, fate or destiny (again in one sense). That it is that cardinal tenet which teaches that, as soon as any conscious or sentient being, whether man, deva, or animal dies, a new being is produced and he or it reappears in another birth, on the same or another planet, under conditions of his or its own antecedent making. Or, in other words that Karma is the guiding power, and Trishna (in Pali Tanha) the thirst or desire to sentiently live — the proximate force or energy, the resultant of human (or animal) action, which, out of the old Skandhas (8) produce the new group that form the new being and control the nature of the birth itself. Or to make it still clearer, the new being, is rewarded and punished for the meritorious acts and misdeeds of the old one; Karma representing an Entry Book, in which all the acts of man, good, bad, or indifferent, are carefully recorded to his debit and credit — by himself, so to say, or rather by these very actions of his. There, where Christian poetical fiction created, and sees a "Recording" Guardian Angel, stern and realistic Buddhist logic, perceiving the necessity that every cause should have its effect — shows its real presence. The opponents of Buddhism have laid great stress upon the alleged injustice that the doer should escape and an innocent victim be made to suffer, — since the doer and the sufferer are different beings. The fact is, that while in one sense they may be so considered, yet in another they are identical. The "old being" is the sole parent — father and mother at once — of the "new being." It is the former who is the creator and fashioner, of the latter, in reality; and far more so in plain truth, than any father in flesh. And once that you have well mastered the meaning of Skandhas you will see what I mean.

It is the group of Skandhas, that form and constitute the physical and mental individuality we call man (or any being). This group consists (in the exoteric teaching) of five Skandhas, namely: Rupa — the material properties or attributes; Vedana — sensations; Sanna — abstract ideas; Sankhara — tendencies both physical and mental; and Vinnana — mental powers, an amplification of the fourth — meaning the mental, physical and moral predispositions. We add to them two more, the nature and names of which you may learn hereafter. Suffice for the present to let you know that they are connected with, and productive of Sakkayaditthi, the "heresy or delusion of individuality" and of Attavada "the doctrine of Self," both of which (in the case of the fifth principle the soul) lead to the maya of heresy and belief in the efficacy of vain rites and ceremonies; in prayers and intercession.

Now, returning to the question of identity between the old and the new "Ego." I may remind you once more, that even your Science has accepted the old, very old fact distinctly taught by our Lord (9), viz. — that a man of any given age, while sentiently the same, is yet physically not the same as he was a few years earlier (we say seven years and are prepared to maintain and prove it): buddhistically speaking, his Skandhas have changed. At the same time they are ever and ceaselessly at work in preparing the abstract mould, the "privation" of the future new being. Well then, if it is just that a man of 40 should enjoy or suffer for the actions of the man of 20, so it is equally just that the being of the new birth, who is essentially identical with the previous being — since he is its outcome and creation — should feel the consequences of that begetting Self or personality. Your Western law which punishes the innocent son of a guilty father by depriving him of his parent, rights and property; your civilized Society which brands with infamy the guileless daughter of an immoral, criminal mother; your Christian Church and Scriptures which teach that the "Lord God visits the sins of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation" are not all these far more unjust and cruel than anything done by Karma? Instead of punishing the innocent together with the culprit, the Karma avenges and rewards the former, which neither of your three western potentates above mentioned ever thought of doing. But perhaps, to our physiological remark the objectors may reply that it is only the body that changes, there is only a molecular transformation, which has nothing to do with the mental evolution; and that the Skandhas represent not only a material but also a set of mental and moral qualities. But is there, I ask, either a sensation, an abstract idea, a tendency of mind, or a mental power, that one could call an absolutely non-molecular phenomenon? Can even a sensation or the most abstractive thoughts which is something, come out of nothing, or be nothing?

Now, the causes producing the "new being" and determining the nature of Karma are, as already said — Trishna (or "Tanha") — thirst, desire for sentient existence and Upadana — which is the realization or consummation of Trishna or that desire. And both of these the medium helps to awaken and to develop nec plus ultra in an Elementary, be he a suicide or a victim. (10) The rule is, that a person who dies a natural death, will remain from "a few hours to several short years," within the earth's attraction, i.e., in the Kama-Loka. But exceptions are, in the case of suicides and those who die a violent death in general. Hence, one of such Egos, for instance, who was destined to live — say 80 or 90 years, but who either killed himself or was

killed by some accident, let us suppose at the age of 20 — would have to pass in the Kama Loka not "a few years," but in his case 60 or 70 years, as an Elementary, or rather an "earth-walker"; since he is not, unfortunately for him, even a "shell." Happy, thrice happy, in comparison, are those disembodied entities, who sleep their long slumber and live in dream in the bosom of Space! And woe to those whose Trishna will attract them to mediums, and woe to the latter, who tempt them with such an easy Upadana. For in grasping them, and satisfying their thirst for life, the medium helps to develop in them — is in fact the cause of — a new set of Skandhas, a new body, with far worse tendencies and passions than was the one they lost. All the future of this new body will be determined thus, not only by the Karma of demerit of the previous set or group but also by that of the new set of the future being. Were the mediums and Spiritualists but to know, as I said, that with every new "angel guide" they welcome with rapture, they entice the latter into an Upadana which will be productive of a series of untold evils for the new Ego that will be born under its nefarious shadow, and that with every seance — especially for materialization — they multiply the causes for misery, causes that will make the unfortunate Ego fail in his spiritual birth, or be reborn into a worse existence than ever — they would, perhaps, be less lavishing their hospitality.

And now, you may understand why we oppose so strongly Spiritualism and mediumship. And, you will also see, why, to satisfy Mr. Hume, — at least in one direction, — I got myself into a scrape with the Chohan, and mirabile dictu! — with both the sahibs, "the young men by the name of" — Scott and Banon. To amuse you I will ask H.P.B. to send you with this a page of the "Banon papyrus," an article of his that he winds up with a severe literary thrashing of my humble self. Shadows of the Asuras, in what a passion she flew upon reading this rather disrespectful criticism! I am sorry she does not print it, upon considerations of "family honour" as the "Disinherited" expressed it. As to the Chohan, the matter is more serious; and, he was far from satisfied that I should have allowed Eglinton to believe it was myself. He had permitted this proof of the power in living man to be given to the Spiritualists through a medium of theirs, but had left the programme and its details to ourselves; hence his displeasure at some trifling consequences. I tell you, my dear friend, that I am far less free to do as I like than you are in the matter of the Pioneer. None of us but the highest Chutuktus are their full masters. But I digress.

And now that you have been told much and had explained a good deal, you may as well read this letter to our irrepressible friend — Mrs. Gordon. The reasons given may throw some cold water on her Spiritualistic zeal, though I have my reasons to doubt it. Anyhow it may show her that it is not against true Spiritualism that we set ourselves, but only against indiscriminate mediumship and — physical manifestations, — materializations and trance-possessions especially. Could the Spiritualists be only made to understand the difference between individuality and personality, between individual and personal immortality and some other truths, they would be more easily persuaded that Occultists may be fully convinced of the monad's immortality, and yet deny that of the soul — the vehicle of the personal Ego; that they can firmly believe in, and themselves practice spiritual communications and intercourse with the disembodied Egos of the Rupa-Loka, and yet laugh at the insane idea of "shaking hands" with a "Spirit"!; that finally, that as the matter stands, it is the Occultists and the Theosophists who are true Spiritualists, while the modern sect of that name is composed simply of materialistic phenomenalists.

And once that we are discussing "individuality" and "personality," it is curious that H.P.B. when subjecting poor Mr. Hume's brain to torture with her muddled explanations, never thought — until receiving the explanation from himself, of the difference that exists between individuality and personality — that it was the very same doctrine she had been taught: that of Paccika-Yana, and of Amita-Yana. The two terms as above given by him are the correct and literal translation of the Pali, Sanskrit, and even of the Chino-Tibetan technical names for the many personal entities blended in one Individuality — the long string of lives emanating from the same Immortal MONAD. You will have to remember them: —


(I) The Paccika Yana — (in Sanskrit "Pratyeka") means literally — the "personal vehicle" or personal Ego, a combination of the five lower principles. While —


(2) The Amita-Yana — (in Sanskrit "Amrita") is translated: "The immortal vehicle," or the Individuality, the Spiritual Soul, or the Immortal monad — a combination of the fifth, sixth and seventh. (11)


It appears to me that one of our great difficulties in trying to understand the progress of affairs turns

Quite right. But I must be permitted to doubt whether with the desired explanations the difficulty will be removed, and you will become able to penetrate "the secret of psychic phenomena." You, my good friend, whom I had once or twice the pleasure of hearing playing on your piano in the quiet intervals between dress-coating and a beef-and-claret dinner — tell me, could you favour me as readily, as with one of your easy waltzes — with one of Beethoven's Grand Sonatas? Pray, pray have patience! Yet, I would not refuse you by any means. You will find the fourth and the fifth principles, divided into roots and Branches on a fly-sheet herein enclosed, if I find time. (12) And now, how long do you propose to abstain from interrogation marks?


K. H.

P.S. — I hope I have now removed all cause for reproaches — my delay in answering your queries notwithstanding, — and that my character is re-established. Yourself and Mr. Hume have received now more information about the A.E. Philosophy than was ever given out to non-initiates within my knowledge. Your sagacity, my kind friend, will have suggested long ago, that it is not so much because of your combined personal virtues — though Mr. Hume I must confess, has run up a large claim since his conversion — or my personal preferences for either of you, as for other and very apparent reasons. Of all our semi-chelas you two are the most likely to utilise for the general good the facts given you. You must regard them received in trust for the benefit of the whole Society; to be turned over, and employed and re-employed in many ways and in all ways that are good. If you (Mr. Sinnett) would give pleasure to your trans-Himalayan friend, do not suffer any month to pass without writing a Fragment, long or short for the magazine, and then, issuing it as a pamphlet — since you so call it. You may sign them as "A Lay-Chela of K.H.," or in any way you choose. I dare not ask the same favour of Mr. Hume, who has already done more than his share in another direction.

I will not answer your query about your Pioneer connection just now: something may be said on both sides. But at least take no rash decision. We are at the end of the cycle, and you are connected with the T.S.

Under favour of my Karma — I mean to answer to-morrow Mr. Hume's long and kind personal letter. The abundance of MSS. from me of late shows that I have found a little leisure, their blotched, patchy and mended appearance also proves that my leisure has come by snatches, with constant interruptions, and that my writing has been done in odd places here and there, with such materials as I could pick up. But for the RULE that forbids our using one minim of power until every ordinary means has been tried and failed, I might, of course, have given you a lovely "precipitation" as regards chirography and composition. I console myself for the miserable appearance of my letters with the thought that perhaps, you may not value them the less, for these marks of my personal subjection to the way-side annoyances which you English so ingeniously reduce to a minimum with your appliances of sorts. As your lady once kindly remarked, they take away most effectually the flavour of miracle, and make us as human beings, more thinkable entities, — a wise reflection for which I thank her.

H.P.B. is in despair: the Chohan refused permission to M. to let her come this year further than the Black Rock, and M. very coolly made her unpack her trunks. Try to console her, if you can. Besides, she is really wanted more at Bombay than Penlor. Olcott is on his way to Lanka and Damodar packed up to Poona for a month, his foolish austerities and hard work having broken down his physical constitution. I will have to look after him, and perhaps, to take him away, if it comes to the worst.

Just now I am able to give you a bit of information, which bears upon the so often discussed question of our allowing phenomena. The Egyptian operations of your blessed countrymen involve such local consequences to the body of Occultists still remaining there and to what they are guarding, that two of our adepts are already there, having joined some Druze brethren and three more on their way. I was offered the agreeable privilege of becoming an eye-witness to the human butchery, but — declined with thanks. For such great emergency is our Force stored up, and hence — we dare not waste it on fashionable tamasha. In about a week — new religious ceremonies, new glittering bubbles to amuse the babes with, and once more I will be busy night and day, morning, noon, and evening. At times I feel a passing regret that the Chohans should not evolute the happy idea of allowing us also a "sumptuary allowance" in the shape of a little spare time. Oh, for the final Rest! for that Nirvana where — "to be one with Life, yet — to live not." Alas, alas!

having personally realized that: — ". . . the Soul of Things is sweet, The Heart of Being is celestial Rest,"

one does long for — eternal REST! Yours,

K. H.

Letter 17 Table of Contents


 Those who have not ended their earth rings. (return to text)

 Literally — those who will never return — the seventh round men, etc. (return to text)

 See back — (1) of your questions. (return to text)

 O.T. stands for Occult Truth. — ED. (return to text)

 Tibetan: Yuh-Kai. (return to text)

 This Mara, as you may well think, is the allegorical image of the sphere called the "Planet of Death" — the whirlpool whither disappear the lives doomed to destruction. It is between Kama and Rupa-Lokas that the struggle takes place. (return to text)

 The Planetary Spirits of our Earth are not of the highest, as you may well imagine — since, as Subba Row says in his criticism upon Oxley's work that no Eastern Adept would like to be compared with an angel or a Deva.

See May Theosophist. (return to text)

7a. In Abidharma Shastra (Metaphysics) we read: — "Buddha taught that on the outskirts of all the Sakwalas, there is a black interval, without Sun or moonlight for him who falls into it. There is no re-birth from it. It is the cold Hell, the great Naraka." This is Avitchi. (return to text)


8. I remark that in the second as well as in the first edition of your Occult World the same misprint appears, and that the word Skandha is spelt Shandba — on page 130. As it now stands I am made to express myself in a very original way for a supposed Adept. (return to text)


9. See the Abhidharma Kosha Vyakhya, the Sutta Pitaka, any Northern Buddhist book, all of which show Gautama Buddha saying that none of these Skandhas is the soul; since the body is constantly changing, and that neither man, animal, nor plant is ever the same for two consecutive days or even minutes. "Mendicants! remember that there is within man no abiding principle whatever, and that only the learned disciple who acquires wisdom, in saying 'I am' — knows what he is saying." (return to text)

10. Alone the Shells and the Elementals are left unhurt, though the morality of the sensitives can by no means be improved by the intercourse. (return to text)


11. To avoid a fresh surprise and confusion at the news of the fifth keeping company with the sixth and seventh, please turn to page 3, et sec. [answer to question 5] (return to text)


12. I did not find time. Will send it a day or two later. (return to text)


Letter No. 17

[K.H.'s Replies to Mr. Sinnett's queries are printed in bold type. — ED.]

Received Simla, June, 1882


(1) Some fifth round men have already begun to appear on earth. In what way are they distinguishable from fourth round men of the seventh earthly incarnation? I suppose they are in the first incarnation of the fifth round that that a tremendous advance will be achieved when the fifth round people get to their seventh incarnation.


(1) The natural-born Seers and clairvoyants of Mrs. A. Kingsford's and Mr. Maitland's types; the great adepts of whatsoever country; the geniuses — whether in arts, politics or religious reform. No greatphysical distinction yet: too early and will come later on.


Quite so. If you turn to Appendix No. I (1) you will find it explained.

(2) But if a 1st-5th round man devoted himself to occultism and became an adept, would he escape further earthly incarnations?

(2)No; if we except Buddha — a sixth round being, as he had run so successfully the race in his previous incarnations as to outrun even his predecessors. But then such a man is to be found one in a billion of human creatures. He differed from other men as much in his physical appearance as in spirituality and knowledge. Yet even he escaped further reincarnations but on this earth; and, whenthe last of the sixth round men of the third ring is gone out of this earth, the Great Teacher will have to get reincarnated on the next planet. Only, and since He sacrificed Nirvanic bliss and Rest for thesalvation of his fellow creatures He will be re-born in the highest — the seventh ring of the upper planet. Till then He will overshadow every decimillenium (let us rather say and add "hasovershadowed already" a chosen individual who generally overturned the destinies of nations. See Isis, Vol. I, pp. 34 and 35 last and first para. on the pages).


(3) Is there any essential spiritual difference between a man and a woman, or is sex a mere accident of each birth — the ultimate future of the individual furnishing the same opportunities?


(3) A mere accident — as you say. Generally a chance work yet guided by individual Karma, — moral aptitudes, characteristics and deeds of the previous birth.


(4) The majority of the superior classes of civilized countries on earth now, I understand to be seventh "ring" people (i.e. of the seventh earthly incarnation) of the fourth round. The Australian aborigines I understand to be of a low ring? which? and are the lower and inferior classes of civilized countries of various rings or of the ring just below the seventh. And are all seventh ring people born in the superior classes or may not some be found among the poor?


(4) Not necessarily. Refinement, polishedness, and brilliant education, in your sense of these words have very little to do with the course of higher Nature's Law. Take a seventh ring African or a fifth ring Mongolian and you can educate him — if taken from the cradle — save his physical appearance, andtransform him into the most brilliant and accomplished English lord. Yet, he will still remain, but an outwardly intellectual parrot. (See Appendix No. 11).


(5) The Old Lady told me that the bulk of the inhabitants of this country are in some respects less advanced than Europeans though more spiritual. Are they on a lower ring of the same round — or does the difference refer to some principle of national cycles which has nothing to do with individual progress?


(5) Most of the peoples of India belong to the oldest or the earliest branchlet of the fifth human Race. I


What is the explanation of "Ernest" and Eglinton's other guide? Are they elementaries drawing their conscious vitality from him or elementals masquerading? When "Ernest" took that sheet of "Pioneer" notepaper how did he contrive to get it without mediumship at this end?

I can assure you it is not worth your while nowto study the true natures of the "Ernests" and "Joeys" and "other guides" as unless you become acquainted with the evolution of the corruptions of elemental dross, and those of the seven principles in man — you would ever find yourself at a loss to understand — what they really are; there are no written statutes for them, and they can hardly be expected to paytheir friends and admirers the compliment of truth, silence or forbearing. If some are related to them as some soullessphysical mediums are — they shall meet. If not — better leave them alone. Theygravitate but to their likes — the mediums; and their relation is not made but forced by foolish and sinful phenomena-mongers. They are both elementaries and elementals — at best a low, mischievous,degrading jangle. You want to embrace too much knowledge at once, my dear friend; you cannot attain at a bound all the mysteries. See however Appendix — which is in reality a letter.

I do not know Subba Rao — who is a pupil of M. At least — he knows very little of me. Yet I know, he will neverconsent to come to Simla. But if ordered by Morya will teach from Madras, i.e., correct theMSS. as M. did, comment upon them, answer questions, and be very, very useful. He has a perfect reverence and adoration for — H.P.B.

K. H.

Table of Contents


1. See Letter No. 18. — ED. (return to text)

Letter No. 18

Received Simla, June, 1882.


(I) Every Spiritual Individuality has a gigantic evolutionary journey to perform a tremendous gyratory progress to accomplish. First — at the very beginning of the great Mahamanvantaric rotation, from first to last of the man-bearing planets, as on each of them, the monad has to pass through seven successive races of man. From the dumb offshoot of the ape (the latter strongly differentiating from the now known specimens) up to the present fifth race, or rather variety, and through two more races, before he has done with this earth only; and then on to the next, higher and higher still. . . . But we will confine our attention but to this one. Each of the seven races send seven ramifying branchlets from the Parent Branch: and through each of these in turn man has to evolute before he passes on to the next higher race; and that — seven times. Well may you open wide your eyes, good friend, and feel puzzled — it is so. The branchlets typify varying specimens of humanity — physically and spiritually — and no one of us can miss one single rung of the ladder. With all that there is no reincarnation as taught by the London Seeress — Mrs. A.K., as the intervals between the re­births are too immeasurably long to permit of any such fantastic ideas. Please, bear in mind, that when I say "man," I mean a human being of our type. There are other and innumerable manvantaric chains of globes bearing intelligent beings — both in and out of our solar system — the crowns or apexes of evolutionary being in their respective chains, some — physically and intellectually — lower, others immeasurably higher than the man of our chain. But beyond mentioning them we will not speak of these at present.

Through every race then, man has to pass making seven successive entrances and exits and developing intellect to degrees from the lowest to the highest in succession. In short, his earth-cycle with its rings and sub-rings is the exact counterpart of the Great Cycle — only in miniature. Bear in mind again, that the intervals even between these special "race re-incarnations" are enormous, as even the dullest of the African Bushmen has to reap the reward of his Karma, equally with his brother Bushman who may be six times more intelligent.

Your Ethnographers and anthropologists would do well to ever keep in their minds this, unvarying septenary law which runs throughout the works of nature. From Cuvier — the late grand master of Protestant Theology — whose Bible-stuffed brain made him divide mankind into but three distinct varieties of races — down to Blumenbach who divided them into five — they were all wrong. Alone Pritchard, who prophetically suggested seven comes near the right mark. I read in the Pioneer of June 12th forwarded to me by H.P.B. a letter on the Ape Theory by A.P.W. which contains a most excellent exposition of the Darwinian hypothesis. The last paragraph page 6 column 1 would be regarded — barring a few errors — as a revelation in a millenium or so, were it to be preserved. Reading the nine lines from line 21 (counting from the bottom) you have a fact of which few naturalists are yet prepared to accept the proof. The fifth, sixth and seventh races of the Fifth Round — each succeeding race evoluting with and keeping pace, so to say with the "Great Cycle" rounds — and the fifth race of the fifth round, having to exhibit a perceptible physical and intellectual as well as moral differentiation towards its fourth "race" or "earthly incarnation" you are right in saying that a "tremendous advance will be achieved when the fifth round people get to their seventh incarnation."

(II) Nor has wealth nor poverty, high or low birth any influence upon it, for this is all a result of their Karma. Neither has — what you call — civilization much to do with the progress. It is the inner man, the spirituality, the illumination of the physical brain by the light of the spiritual or divine intelligence that is the test. The Australian, the Esquimaux, the Bushmen, the Veddahs, etc., are all side-shooting branchlets of that Branch which you call "cave-men" — the third race (according to your Science — the second)that evoluted on the globe. They are the remnants of the seventh ring cave-men, remnants "that have ceased to grow and are the arrested forms of life doomed to eventual decay in the struggle of existence" in the words of your correspondent?

See "Isis" Chapter 1, — " . . . . . the Divine Essence (Purusha) like a luminous arc" proceeds to form a circle — the mahamanvantaric chain; and having attained the highest (or its first starting point) bends back again and returns to earth (the first globe) bringing a higher type of humanity in its vortex — "thus seven times. Approaching our earth it grows more and more shadowy until upon touching ground it becomes as black as night —" i.e. it is matter outwardly, the Spirit or Purusha being concealed under a quintuple armour of the first five principles. Now see underlined three lines on page 5 for the word "mankind" read human races, and for that of "civilization" read Spiritual evolution of that particular race and you have the truth which had to be concealed at that incipient tentative stage of the Theosophical Society.

See again pp. 13 last paragraph and 14 first paragraph, and note the underlined lines about Plato. Then see p. 32 remembering the difference between the Manvantaras as therein calculated and the MAHAMANVANTARAS (complete seven round between two Pralayas, — the four Yugs returning seven times, once for each race. Having done so far take your pen and calculate. This will make you swear — but this will not hurt your Karma much: lip-profanity finds it deaf. Read attentively in this connection (not with the swearing process but with that of evolution) pp. 301 last line "and now comes a mystery . . ." and continue on to p. 304. "Isis" was not unveiled but rents sufficiently large were made to afford flitting glances to be completed by the student's own intuition. In this curry of quotations from various philosophic and esoteric truths purposely veiled, behold our doctrine, which is now being partially taught to Europeans for the first time.

(III) As said in my answer on your notes, most of the peoples of India — with the exception of the Semitic (?) Moguls — belong to the oldest branchlet of the present fifth Human race, which was evoluted in Central Asia more than one million of years ago. Western Science finding good reasons for the theory of human beings having inhabited Europe 400,000 years before your era — this cannot so shock you as to prevent your drinking wine to-night at your dinner. Yet Asia, has as well as Australia, Africa, America and the most northward regions — its remnants — of the fourth — even of the third race (cave-men and Iberians). At the same time, we have more of the seventh ring men of the fourth race than Europe and more of the first ring of the fifth round, as, older than the European branchlets, our men have naturally come in earlier. Their being "less advanced" in civilization and refinement trouble their spirituality but very little, Karma being an animal which remains indifferent to pumps and white kid gloves. Neither your knives nor forks, operas and drawing-rooms will any more follow you in your onward progress than will the dead-leaf coloured robes of the British Esthetics prevent the proprietors thereof and wearers from having been born among the ranks of those, who will be regarded — do what they may — by the forthcoming sixth and seventh round men as flesh-eating and liquor-drinking "savages" of the "Royal Society Period." It depends on you, to so immortalize your name, as to force the future higher races to divide our age and call the sub-division — the "Pleisto-Sinnettic Period" but this can never be so long as you labour under the impression that "the purposes we have now in view would be met by reasonable temperance and self-restraint." Occult Science is a jealous mistress and allows not a shadow of self-indulgence; and it is "fatal" not only to the ordinary course of married life but even to flesh and wine drinking. I am afraid that the archaeologists of the seventh round, when digging out and unearthing the future Pompeii of Punjab — Simla, one day, instead of finding the precious relics of the Theosophical "Eclectic," will fish out but some petrified or vitreous remains of the "Sumptuary allowance." Such is the latest prophecy current at Tzigadze.

And now to the last question. Well, as I say, the "guides" are both elementals and elementaries and not even a decent "half and half" but the very froth in the mug of the mediumistic beer. The several "privations" of such sheets of notepaper were evoluted during E's stay in Calcutta in Mrs. G's atmosphere — since she frequently received letters from you. It was then an easy matter for the creatures in following E's unconscious desire to attract other disintegrated particles from your box, so as to form a double. He is a strong medium, and were it not for an inherent good nature and other good qualities, strongly counteracted by vanity, sloth, selfishness, greediness for money and with other qualities of modern civilization a total absence of will, be would make a superb Dugpa yet, as I said he is "a good fellow" every inch of him; naturally truthful, under control — the reverse. I would if I could save him from. . . .

NOTE. — See Letter 95 for the continuation of Letter 18. — ED.

Letter 19 Table of Contents

Letter No. 19

[Fragments in K.H.'s writing. — ED.]

Attached to Proofs of Letter on Theosophy. Received August 12th, 1882.

Yes; verily known and as confidently affirmed by the adepts from whom —

"No curtain hides the spheres Elysian,

Nor these poor shells of half transparent dust;

For all that blinds the spirit's vision

Is pride and hate and lust."

(Not for publication)

Exceptional cases, my friend. Suicides can and generally do, but not so with the others. The good and pure sleep a quiet blissful sleep, full of happy visions of earth-life and have no consciousness of being already for ever beyond that life. Those who were neither good nor bad, will sleep a dreamless, still a quiet sleep; while the wicked will in proportion to their grossness suffer the pangs of a nightmare lasting years: their thoughts become living things, their wicked passions — real substance, and they receive back on their heads all the misery they have heaped upon others. Reality and fact if described would yield a far more terrible Inferno than even Dante had imagined!

Letter 20a Table of Contents

Letter No. 20a

[The original letter of A.O.H. to K.H. has some passages numbered and underlined with blue pencil by K.H. These are printed in bold type. The numbers refer to K.H.'s replies, for which see post Letter No. 20c. — ED.]

Received August, 1882.


My dear Master,

In speaking of Fragments No. III of which you will receive proofs soon, I said it was far from satisfactory though I had done my best.

It was necessary to advance the doctrine of the Society another stage, so as gradually to open the eyes of the spiritualists — so I introduced as the most pressing matter the Suicide etc. view given in your last letter to S.

Well it is this that seems to me most unsatisfactory and it will lead to anumber of questions that I shall feel puzzled to reply to.

Our first doctrine is that the majority of objective phenomena were due to shells. 1½ and 2½ principled shells, i.e. principles entirely separated from their sixth and seventh principles.

But as a further (1) development we admit that there are some spirits, i.e. 5th and 4th principles not wholly dissevered from their sixth and seventh which also may be potent in the seance room. These are the spirits of suicides and the victims of accident or violence. Here the doctrine is that each particular wave of life must run on to its appointed shore and with the exception of the very good, that all spirits prematurely divorced from the lower principles, must remain on earth, until the foredestined hour of what would have been the natural death strikes.

Now this is all very well but this being so, it is clear that in opposition to our former doctrine, shells will be few and spirits many (2).

For what difference can there be to take the case of suicides, whether these be conscious or unconscious, whether the man blows his brains out, or only drinks or womanizes himself to death, or kills himself by over-study? In each case equally the normal natural hour of death is anticipated and a spirit and not a shell the result — or again what difference does it make whether a man is hung for murder, killed in battle, in a railway train or a powder explosion, or drowned or burnt to death, or knocked over by cholera or plague, or jungle fever or any of the other thousand and one epidemic diseases of which the seeds were not ab initio, in his constitution, but were introduced therein in consequence of his happening to visit a particular locality or undergo a given experience, both of which he might have avoided? Equally in all cases the normal death hour is anticipated and a spirit instead of a shell the result.

In England it is calculated that not 15% of the population reach their normal death period — and what with fevers and famines and their sequeloe, I fear the percentage is not much larger here even — where the people are mostly vegetarian and as a rule live under less unfavourable sanitary conditions.

So then the great bulk of all the physical phenomena of spiritualists ought apparently to be due to these spirits and not to shells. I should be glad to have further information on this point.

There is a second point (3) very often as I understand the spirits of very fair average good people dying natural deaths, remain some time in the earth's atmosphere — from a few days to a few years — why cannot such as these communicate? And if they can this is a most important point that should not have been

(4) And thirdly it is a fact that thousands of spirits do appear in pure circles and teach the highest morality and moreover tell very closely the truths as to the unseen world (witness Alan Kardec's books pages on pages of which are identical with what you yourself teach) and it is unreasonable to suppose that such are either shells or bad spirits. But you have not given us any opening for any large number of pure high spirits — and until the whole theory is properly set forth and due place made for these which seem to me a thoroughly well established fact, you will never win over the spiritualists. I dare say it is the old story — only part of the truth being told to us and the rest reserved — if so it is merely cutting the Society's throat. Better to tell the outside world nothing — than to tell them half truths the incompleteness of which they detect at once, the result being a contemptuous rejection of what is truth and though they cannot accept it in this fragmentary state.

Yours affectionately,

A. O. Hume.

Table of Contents

Letter No. 20b

[Letter from Mr. Sinnett to H.P.B. on the backs of the pages of which is part of a long letter from  (No. 20c) re queries of Hume's. The passages in bold type have been underlined in blue by  — ED.]


Received August 1882.

Simla, July 25th.

My Dear Old Lady,

I began to try to answer N.D.K.'s letter at once so that if K.H. really meant the note to appear in this immediately "next" appearing Theosophist for August it might just be in time. But I soon got into a tangle. Of course we have received no information that distinctly covers the question now raised, though I suppose we ought to be able to combine bits into an answer. The difficulty turns on giving the real explanation of Eliphas Levi's enigma in your note in the October Theosophist.

If he refers to the fate of this, at present existing race of mankind his statement that the intermediate majority of Egos are ejected from nature or annihilated, would be in direct conflict with K.H.'s teaching. ** They do not die without remembrance, if they retain remembrance in Devachan and again recover remembrance (even of past personalities as of a book's pages) at the period of full individual consciousness preceding that of absolute consciousness in Pari-Nirvana.

But it occurred to me that E.L. may have been dealing with humanity as a whole, not merely with the fourth round men. Great numbers of fifth round personalities are destined to perish I understand, and thesemight be his intermediate useless portion of mankind. But then the individual spiritual monads, as I understand the matter, do not perish whatever happens, and if a monad reaches the fifth round with all his previous personalities preserved in the pages of his book awaiting future perusal, he would not be ejected and annihilated because some of his fifthround pages were "unfit for publication." So again there is a difficulty in reconciling the two statements.

X. But again is it conceivable that a spiritual monad though surviving the rejection of its third and fourth round pages, cannot survive the rejection of fifth and sixth round pages. That failure to lead good lives in these rounds means the annihilation of the whole individual who will never then get to the seventh round at all.

But on the other hand if that were so the Eliphas Levi case would not be met by such a hypothesis, for long before then the individuals who had become co-workers with nature for evil would have been themselves annihilated by the obscuration of the planet X. between the fifth and sixth rounds — if not by the obscuration between the fourth and the fifth, for to every round there is one obscuration we are told. (5) There is another difficulty here because some fifth rounders being here already it is not clear when the obscuration comes on. Will it be behind the avant couriers of the fifth round, who will not count as commencing the fifth, that epoch only really beginning after the existing race has totally decayed out — but this idea will not work.

Having got so far in my reflections yesterday, I went up to Hume to see if he could make out the puzzle and so enable me to write what was wanted for this post. But on looking into it and looking back to the October Theosophist we came to the conclusion that the only possible explanation was that the October Theosophist note was utterly wrong and totally at variance with all our later teaching. Is that really the solution? I do not think so or K.H. would not have set me to reconcile the two.

But you will see that at present, with the best will in the world I am utterly unable to do the job set me, and if my dear Guardian and Master will kindly look at these remarks he will see the dilemma in which I am placed.

We all feel so sorry for you, over-worked amid the heat and the flies. When you have got the August number off your hands you might perhaps be able to take flight for here, and get a little rest amongst us. You know how glad at any time we should be to see you. Meanwhile my own individual plans are a little uncertain. I may have to return to Allahabad, in order to leave Hensman free to go as special correspondent to Egypt. I am fighting my proprietors tooth and nail to avert this result — but for a few days still the issue of the struggle will be uncertain.

Ever Yours,

A. P. S.

P.S. — As you may want to print the letter in this number, I return it herewith, but hope that this may not be the case and that you will send it me back again so that I may duly perform my little task with the help of a few words as to the line to be followed.

{The articles mentioned were published in the September Theosophist.}

Table of Contents

Letter No. 20c

Received August, 1882.

**Except in so far, that he constantly uses the terms "God" and "Christ" which taken in their esoteric sense simply mean "Good" — in its dual aspect of the abstract and the concrete and nothing more dogmatic, Eliphas Levi is not in any direct conflict with our teachings. It is again a straw blown out of a hay-stack and accused by the wind to belong to a hay-rick. Most of those, whom you may call, if you like, candidates for Deva Chan — die and are reborn in the Kama-Loka "without remembrance"; though (and just because) they do get some of it back in the Deva-Chan. Nor can we call it a full, but only a partial remembrance. You would hardly call "remembrance" a dream of yours; some particular scene or scenes, within whose narrow limits you would find enclosed a few persons — those whom you loved best, with an undying love, that holy feeling that alone survives, and — not the slightest recollection of any other events or scenes? Love and Hatred are the only immortal feelings, the only survivors from the wreck of Ye-damma, or the phenomenal world. Imagine yourself then, in Deva-Chan with those you may have loved with such immortal love; with the familiar, shadowy scenes connected with them for a background and — a perfect blank for everything else relating to your interior, social, political, literary and social life. And then, in the face of that spiritual, purely cogitative existence, of that unalloyed felicity which, in proportion with the intensity of the feelings that created it, last from a few to several thousand years, — call it the "personal remembrance of A. P. Sinnett" — if you can. Dreadfully monotonous! — you may think. — Not in the least — I answer. Have you experienced monotony during — say — that moment which you considered then and now so consider it — as the moment of the highest bliss you have ever felt? — Of course not. — Well no more will you experience it there, in that passage through the Eternity in which a million of years is no longer than a second. There, where there is no consciousness of an external world there can be no discernment to mark differences, hence, — no perception of contrasts of monotony or variety; nothing in short, outside that immortal feeling of love and sympathetic attraction whose seeds are planted in the fifth, whose plants blossom luxuriantly in and around the fourth, but whose roots have to penetrate deep into the sixth principle, if it would survive the lower groups. (And now I propose to kill two birds with one stone — to answer your and Mr. Hume's questions at the same time) — remember, both, that we create ourselves our devachan as our avitchi while yet on earth, and mostly during the latter days and even moments of our intellectual, sentient lives. That feeling which is the strongest in us at that supreme hour; when, as in a dream, the events of a long life, to their minutest details, are marshalled in the greatest order in a few seconds in our vision (1) — that feeling will become the fashioner of our bliss or woe, the life principle of our future existence. In the latter we have no substantial being, but only a present and momentary existence, — whose duration has no bearing upon, as no effect, or relation to its being — which as every other effect of a transitory cause will be as fleeting, and in its turn will vanish and cease to be. The real full remembrance of our lives will come but at the end of the minor cycle — not before. In Kama Loka those who retain their remembrance, will not enjoy it at the supreme hour of recollection. — Those who know they are dead in their physical body — can only be either adepts or — sorcerers; and these two are the exceptions to the general rule. Both having been "co-workers with nature," the former for good, the latter — for bad, in her work of creation and in that of destruction, they are the only ones who may be called immortal — in the Kabalistic and the esoteric sense of course. Complete or true immortality, — which means an unlimited sentient existence, can have no breaks and stoppages, no arrest of Self-consciousness. And even the shells of those good men whose page will not be found missing in the great Book of Lives at the threshold of the Great Nirvana, even they will regain their remembrance and an appearance of Self-consciousness, only after the sixth and seventh principles with the essence of the 5th (the latter having to furnish the material for even that partial recollection of personality which is necessary for the object in Deva Chan) — have gone to their gestation period, not before. Even in the case of suicides and those who have perished by violent death, even in their case, consciousness requires a certain time to establish its new centre of gravity, and evolve, as Sir W. Hamilton would have it — its "perception proper" henceforth to remain distinct from "sensation proper." Thus, when man dies, his "Soul" (fifth prin.) becomes unconscious and loses all remembrance of things internal as well as external. Whether his stay in Kama Loka has to last but a few moments, hours, days, weeks, months or years; whether he died a natural or a violent death; whether it occurred in his young or old age, and, whether the Ego was good, bad, or indifferent, — his consciousness leaves him as suddenly as the flame leaves the wick, when blown out. When life has retired from the last particle in the brain matter, his perceptive faculties become extinct forever, his spiritual powers of cogitation and volition — (all those faculties in short, which are neither inherent in, nor acquirable by organic matter) — for the time being. His Mayavi rupa may be often thrown into objectivity, as in the cases of apparitions after death; but, unless it is projected with the knowledge of (whether latent or potential), or, owing to the intensity of the desire to see or appear to someone, shooting through the dying brain, the apparition will be simply — automatical; it will not be due to any sympathetic attraction, or to any act of volition, and no more than the reflection of a person passing unconsciously near a mirror, is due to the desire of the latter.

Having thus explained the position, I will sum up and ask again why it should be maintained that what is given by Eliphas Levi and expounded by H.P.B., is "in direct conflict" with my teaching? E.L. is an Occultist, and a Kabalist, and writing for those who are supposed to know the rudiments of the Kabalistic tenets, uses the peculiar phraseology of his doctrine, and H.P.B. follows suit. The only omission she was guilty of, was not to add the word "Western" between the two words "Occult" and doctrine (see third line of Editor's note).She is a fanatic in her way, and is unable to write with anything like system and calmness, or to remember that the general public needs all the lucid explanations that to her may seem superfluous. And, as you are sure to remark — "but this is also our case; and you too seem to forget it," — I will give you a few more explanations. As remarked on the margin of the October Theosophist — the word "immortality" has for the initiates and occultists quite a different meaning. We call "immortal" but the one Life in its universal collectivity and entire or Absolute Abstraction; that which has neither beginning nor end, nor any break in its continuity. Does the term apply to anything else? Certainly it does not. Therefore the earliest Chaldeans had several prefixes to the word "immortality," one of which is the Greek, rarely-used term — panaeonic immortality, i.e. beginning with the manvantara and ending with the pralaya of our Solar Universe. It lasts the aeon, or "period" of our pan or "all nature." Immortal then is he, in the panaeonic immortality whose distinct consciousness and perception of Self under whatever form — undergoes no disjunction at any time not for one second, during the period of his Egoship. Those periods are several in number, each having its distinct name in the secret doctrines of the Chaldeans, Greeks, Egyptians and Aryans, and, were they but amenable to translation, — which they are not, at least so long as the idea involved remains inconceivable to the Western mind — I could give them to you. Suffice for you, for the present to know, that a man, an Ego like yours or mine, may be immortal from one to the other Round. Let us say I begin my immortality at the present fourth Round, i.e., having become a full adept (which unhappily I am not) I arrest the hand of Death at will, and when finally obliged to submit to it, my knowledge of the secrets of nature puts me in a position to retain my consciousness and distinct perception of Self as an object to my own reflective consciousness and cognition; and thus avoiding all such dismemberments of principles, that as a rule take place after the physical death of average humanity, I remain as Koothoomi in my Ego throughout the whole series of births and lives across the seven worlds and Arupa-lokas until finally I land again on this earth among the fifth race men of the full fifth Round beings. I would have been, in such a case — "immortal" for an inconceivable (to you) long period, embracing many milliards of years. And yet am "I" truly immortal for all that? Unless I make the same efforts as I do now, to secure for myself another such furlough from Nature's Law, Koothoomi will vanish and may become a Mr. Smith or an innocent Babu, when his leave expires. There are men who become such mighty beings, there are men among us who may become immortal during the remainder of the Rounds, and then take their appointed place among the highest Chohans, the Planetary conscious "Ego-Spirits." Of course the Monad "never perishes whatever happens," but Eliphas speaks of the personal not of the Spiritual Egos, and you have fallen into the same mistake (and very naturally too) as C.C.M.; though I must confess the passage in Isis was very clumsily expressed, as I had already remarked to you, about this same paragraph in one of my letters long ago. I had to "exercise my ingenuity" over it — as the Yankees express it, but, succeeded in mending the hole, I believe, — as I will have to many times more, I am afraid, before we have done with Isis. It really ought to be re-written for the sake of the family honour.

X It is certainly inconceivable, therefore, there is no mortal use to discuss the subject.

X You misconceived the teaching, because you were not aware of what you are now told: (a) who are the true co-workers with nature; and (b) that it is by no means all the evil co-workers, who drop into the eighth sphere and are annihilated. (2)

The potency for evil is as great in man — aye — greater — than the potentiality for good. An exception to the rule of nature, that exception, which in the case of adepts and sorcerers becomes in its turn a rule, has again its own exceptions. Read carefully the passage that C.C.M. left unquoted — on pp. 352-353, Isis Volume I, Para. 3. Again she omits to distinctly state that the case mentioned relates but to those powerful sorcerers whose co-partnership with nature for evil affords to them the means of forcing her hand, and thus accord them also panaeonic immortality. But oh, what kind of immortality, and how preferable is annihilation to their lives! Don't you see that everything you find in Isis is delineated, hardly sketched — nothing completed or fully revealed. Well the time has come, but where are the workers for such a tremendous task?

Says Mr. Hume (see affixed letter (3) marked passages — 10 [X] and 1, 2, 3). And now when you have read the objections to that most unsatisfactory doctrine — as Mr. Hume calls it — a doctrine which you had to learn first as a whole, before proceeding to study it in parts, — at the risk of satisfying you no better, I will proceed to explain the latter.


(1) Although not "wholly dissevered from their sixth and seventh principles" and quite "potent" in the seance room, nevertheless to the day when they would have died a natural death, they are separated from the higher principles by a gulf. The sixth and seventh remain passive and negative, whereas, in cases of accidental death the higher and the lower groups mutually attract each other. In cases of good and innocent Egos, moreover, the latter gravitates irresistibly toward the sixth and seventh, and thus — either slumbers surrounded by happy dreams, or, sleeps a dreamless profound sleep until the hour strikes. With a little reflection, and an eye to eternal justice and fitness of things, you will see why. The victim whether good or bad is irresponsible for his death, even if his death were due to some action in a previous life or an antecedent birth; was an act, in short, of the Law of Retribution, still, it was not the direct result of an act deliberately committed by the personal Ego of that life during which he happened to be killed. Had he been allowed to live longer he may have atoned for his antecedent sins still more effectually: and even now, the Ego having been made to pay off the debt of his maker (the previous Ego) is free from the blows of retributive justice. The Dhyan Chohans who have no hand in the guidance of the living human Ego, protect the helpless victim when it is violently thrust out of its element into a new one, before it is matured and made fit and ready for it. We tell you what we know, for we are made to learn it through personal experience. You know what I mean and I CAN SAY NO MORE! Yes; the victims whether good or bad sleep, to awake but at the hour of the last Judgment, which is that hour of the supreme struggle between the sixth and seventh, and the fifth and fourth at the threshold of the gestation state. And even after that, when the sixth and seventh carrying off a portion of the fifth have gone into their Akasic Samadhi, even then it may happen that the spiritual spoil from the fifth will prove too weak to be reborn in Deva-Chan; in which case it will there and then reclothe itself in a new body, the subjective "Being" created from the Karma of the victim (or no-victim, as the case may be) and enter upon a new earth-existence whether upon this or any other planet. In no case then, — with the exception of suicides and shells, is there any possibility for any other to be attracted to a seance room. And it is clear that "this teaching is not in opposition to our former doctrine" and that while "shells" will be many, — Spirits very few.


(2) There is a great difference in our humble opinion. We, who look at it from a stand-point which would prove very unacceptable to Life Insurance Companies, say, that there are very few if any of the men who indulge in the above enumerated vices, who feel perfectly sure that such a course of action will lead them eventually to premature death. Such is the penalty of Maya. The "vices" will not escape their punishment; but it is the cause not the effect that will be punished, especially an unforeseen though probable effect. As well call a suicide a man who meets his death in a storm at sea, as one who kills himself with "over-study." Water is liable to drown a man, and too much brain-work to produce a softening of the brain which may carry him away. In such a case no one ought to cross the Kalapani nor even to take a bath for fear of getting faint in it and drowned (for we all know of such cases;) nor should a man do his duty, least of all sacrifice himself for even a laudable and highly-beneficent cause, as many of us — (H.P.B. for one) — do. Would Mr. Hume call her a suicide were she to drop down dead over her present work? Motive is everything and man is punished in a case of direct responsibility, never otherwise. In the victim's case the natural hour of death was anticipated accidentally, while in that of the suicide, death is brought on voluntarily and with a full and deliberate knowledge of its immediate consequences. Thus a man who causes his death in a fit of temporary insanity is not a felo de se to the great grief and often trouble of the Life Insurance Companies. Nor is he left a prey to the temptations of the Kama Loka but falls asleep like any other victim. A Guiteau will not remain in the earth's atmosphere with his higher principles over him — inactive and paralysed, still there. Guiteau is gone into a state during the period of which, he will be ever firing at his President, thereby tossing into confusion

and shuffling the destinies of millions of persons; where he will be ever tried and ever hung. Bathing in the reflections of his deeds and thoughts — especially those he indulged in on the scaffold, . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . [Two lines in original have been deleted here. — ED.] his fate. As for those who were "knoched over by cholera, or plague, or jungle fever" they could not have succumbed had they not the germs for the development of such diseases in them from birth.

"So then, the great bulk of the physical phenomena of Spiritualists" my dear brother, are not "due to these Spirits" but indeed — to "shells."


(3) "The Spirits of very fair average good people dying natural deaths remain . . . in the earth's atmosphere from a few days to a few years," the period depending on their readiness to meet their — creature not their creator; a very abstruse subject you will learn later on, when you too are more prepared. But why should they "communicate"? Do those you love communicate with you during their sleep objectively? Your Spirits, in hours of danger, or intense sympathy, vibrating on the same current of thought — which in such cases, creates a kind of telegraphic spiritual wires between your two bodies — may meet and mutually impress your memories; but then you are living, not dead bodies. But how can an unconscious 5th principle (see supra) impress or communicate with a living organism, unless it has already become a shell? If, for certain reasons they remain in such a state of lethargy for several years, the spirits of the living may ascend to them, as you were already told; and this may take place still easier than in Deva Chan, where the Spirit is too much engrossed in his personal bliss to pay much attention to an intruding element. I say — they cannot.


(4) I am sorry to contradict your statement. I know of no "thousands of spirits" who do appear in circles — and moreover positively do not know of one "perfectly pure circle" — and "teach the highest morality." I hope I may not be classed with slanderers in addition to other names lately bestowed upon me, but truth compels me to declare that Allan Kardec was not quite immaculate during his lifetime, nor has become a very pure Spirit since. As to teaching the "highest morality," we have a Dugpa-Shammar not far from where I am residing. Quite a remarkable man. Not very powerful as a sorcerer but excessively so, as a drunkard, a thief, a liar, and — an orator. In this latter role he could give points to and beat Messrs. Gladstone, Bradlaugh, and even the Rev. H. W. Beacher — than whom, there is no more eloquent preacher of morality, and no greater breaker of his Lord's Commandments in the U.S.A. This Shapa-tung Lama, when thirsty, can make an enormous audience of "yellow-cap" laymen weep all their yearly supply of tears, with the narrative of his repentance and suffering in the morning, and then get drunk in the evening and rob the whole village by mesmerising them into a dead sleep. Preaching and teaching morality with an end in view proves very little. Read "J.P.T.'s" article in Light and what I say will be corroborated.


(To A.P.S. (5).) The "obscuration" comes on only when the last man of whatever Round has passed into the sphere of effects. Nature is too well, too mathematically adjusted to cause mistakes to happen in the exercise of her functions. The obscuration of the planet on which are now evoluting the races of the fifth Round men — will, of course "be behind the few avant couriers" who are now here. But before that time comes we will have to part, to meet no more, as the Editor of the Pioneer and his humble correspondent.

And now having shewn that the October Number of the Theosophist was not utterly wrong, nor was it at "variance with the later teaching," may K.H. set you to "reconcile the two"?

To reconcile you still more with Eliphas, I will send you a number of his MSS. — that have never been published, in a large, clear, beautiful handwriting with my comments all through. Nothing better than that can give you a key to Kabalistic puzzles.

I have to write to Mr. Hume this week; to give him consolation, and to show, that unless he has a strong desire to live, he need not trouble himself about Deva-Chan. Unless a man loves well or hates as well, he will be neither in Deva-Chan nor in Avitchi. "Nature spews the luke-warm out of her mouth" means only that she annihilates their personal Egos (not the shells, nor yet the sixth principle) in the Kama Loka and the Deva-Chan. This does not prevent them from being immediately reborn — and, if their lives were not very very bad, — there is no reason why the eternal Monad should not find the page of that life intact in the Book of Life.

K. H.

Letter 21 Table of Contents


 That vision takes place when a person is already proclaimed dead. The brain is the last organ that dies. (return to text)

 Annihilated suddenly as human Egos and personalities, lasting in that world of pure matter under various material forms an inconceivable length of time before they can return to primeval matter. (return to text)

 See ante Letter No. 20a. — ED. (return to text)


Letter No. 21

[Letter from Mr. Sinnett to K.H. With K.H.'s Comments printed in bold type. — ED.]

Received back 22.8.82. August 12th. My dear Guardian, I am afraid the present letters on Theosophy are not worth much, for I have worked on too literal an acceptance of some passages in your long letter about Deva-Chan. The bearing of that seemed to be that the "accidents" as well as the suicides, were in danger from the attraction of the seance room. You wrote: — "But there is another kind of spirit we have lost sight of, — the suicides and those killed by accidents. Both kinds can communicate and both have to pay dearly for such visits. . . ." Correct.

And later on after speaking of the case of the suicides in detail you say: — "As to the victims of accident these fare still worse . . . unhappy shades . . . cut off in the full flush of earthly passions . . . they are the pisachas etc. . . ." They not only ruin their victims etc. . . ."

Again correct. Bear in mind that the exceptions enforce the rule.

And if they are neither very good nor very bad the "victims of accident or violence," derive a new set of skandhas from the medium who attracts them. I have explained the situation on the margin of proofs. See note.

It was on this text that I have been working.

If this is not to be maintained or if in some way that as yet I cannot understand the words bear a different signification from that which seems to belong to them, it might be better to cancel these two letters altogether or hold them over for complete alteration. The warning is delivered in too solemn a tone and the danger is made too much of if it is merely to apply to suicides, and in the last slip of the proof the elimination of "the accidents and" makes the rest rather ridiculous because then we are dividing suicides only into the very pure and elevated! and the medium people etc.

It seems to me that it would hardly do to let even letter (1) stand alone, — though it does not include the mistake, for it would have no raison d'etre unless followed up by letter (2).

Both letters have gone home to Stainton Moses for transmission to Light — the first by the mail from here of July 21, the second by last mail — yesterday. Now if you decide that it is better to stop and cancel them I shall just be in time to telegraph home to Stainton Moses to that effect, and will do this directly I receive a telegram from you or from the Old Lady to that effect.

If nothing is done they Will appear in Light as written — i.e. as the MS. sent with the present proof stood barring a few little mistakes which I see my wife has made in copying them out.

It is altogether a very awkward tangle. I was precipitate apparently in sending them home, but I thought I had followed the statements of your long devachan letter so faithfully. Awaiting orders,

Ever your devoted

A. P. S.

On margin I said "rarely" but I have not pronounced the word "never." Accidents occur under the most various circumstances; and men are not only killed accidentally, or die as suicides but are also murdered— something we have not even touched upon. I can well understand your perplexity but canhardly help you. Bear always in mind that there are exceptions to every rule, and to these again and other side exceptions, and be always prepared to learn something new. I can easily understand we areaccused of contradictionsand inconsistencies — aye, even to writing one thing to-day and denying it to­morrow. What you were taught is the RULE. Good and pure "accidents" sleep in the Akasa, ignorant oftheir change; very wicked and impure — suffer all the tortures of a horrible nightmare. The majority — neither very good nor very bad, the victims of accident or violence (including murder) — some sleep, others become Nature pisachas, and while a small minority may fall victims to mediums and derive a new set of skandhas from the medium who attracts them. Small as their number may be, their fate is tobe the most deplored. What I said in my notes on your MSS. was in reply to Mr. Hume's statistical calculations which led him to infer that "there were more Spirits than shells in the seance rooms" insuch a case.

You have much to learn — and we have much to teach nor do we refuse to go to the very end. But wemust really beg that you should not jump at hasty conclusions. I do not blame you, my dear faithful friend, I would rather blame myself, were anyone here to be blamed except our respective modes ofthought and habits so diametrically opposed to each other. Accustomed as we are to teach chelas who know enough to find themselves beyond the necessity of "if's " and "but's" during the lessons — I ambut too apt to forget that I am doing the work with you generally entrusted to these chelas. Henceforth, I will take more time when answering your questions. Your letters to London can do no harm, and aresure, on the contrary to do good. They are admirably written and the exceptionsmay be mentioned and the whole ground covered in one of the future letters.

I have no objection to your making extracts for Colonel Chesney — except one — he is not a Theosophist. Only be careful, and do not forget your details and exceptions whenever you explain yourrules. Remember still: even in the case of suicides there are many who will never allow themselves to be drawn into the vortex of mediumship, and pray do not accuse me of "inconsistency" or contradiction when we come to that point. Could you but know how I write my letters and the time I am enabled to give to them, perchance you would feel less critical if not exacting. Well, and how do you like DjualKhool's ideaand art? I have not caught a glimpse of Simla for the last ten days.

Affectionately yours,


Letter 22 Table of Contents

Letter No. 22

[Transcribed from a copy in Mr. Sinnett's handwriting. — ED.]

Extract from Letter by K.H. to Hume. Received for my perusal towards the end of season 1882.


Did it ever strike you, — and now from the standpoint of your Western science and the suggestion of your own Ego which has already seized up the essentials of every truth, prepare to deride the erroneous idea — did you ever suspect that Universal, like finite, human mind might have two attributes, or a dual power — one the voluntary and conscious, and the other the involuntary and unconscious or the mechanical power. To reconcile the difficulty of many theistic and anti-theistic propositions, both these powers are a philosophical necessity. The possibility of the first or the voluntary and conscious attribute in reference to the infinite mind, notwithstanding the assertions of all the Egos throughout the living world — will remain for ever a mere hypothesis, whereas in the finite mind it is a scientific and demonstrated fact. The highest Planetary Spirit is as ignorant of the first as we are, and the hypothesis will remain one even in Nirvana, as it is a mere inferential possibility, whether there or here.

Take the human mind in connexion with the body. Man has two distinct physical brains; the cerebrum with its two hemispheres at the frontal part of the head — the source of the voluntary nerves; and the cerebellum, situated at the back portion of the skull — the fountain of the involuntary nerves which are the agents of the unconscious or mechanical powers of the mind to act through. And weak and uncertain as may be the control of man over his involuntary, such as the blood circulation, the throbbings of the heart and respiration, especially during sleep — yet how far more powerful, how much more potential appears man as master and ruler over the blind molecular motion — the laws which govern his body (a proof of this being afforded by the phenomenal powers of the Adept and even the common Yogi) than that which you will call God, shows over the immutable laws of Nature. Contrary in that to the finite, the "infinite mind," which we name so but for argument's sake, for we call it the infinite FORCE — exhibits but the functions of its cerebellum, the existence of its supposed cerebrum being admitted as above stated, but on the inferential hypothesis deduced from the Kabalistic theory (correct in every other relation) of the Macrocosm being the prototype of the Microcosm. So far as we know the corroboration of it by modern science receiving but little consideration — so far as the highest Planetary Spirits have ascertained (who remember well have the same relations with the trans-cosmical world, penetrating behind the primitive veil of cosmic matter as we have to go behind the veil of this, our gross physical world —) the infinite mind displays to them as to us no more than the regular unconscious throbbings of the eternal and universal pulse of Nature, throughout the myriads of worlds within as without the primitive veil of our solar system.

So far — WE KNOW. Within and to the utmost limit, to the very edge of the cosmic veil we know the fact to be correct — owing to personal experience; for the information gathered as to what takes place beyond — we are indebted to the Planetary Spirits, to our blessed Lord Buddha. This of course may be regarded as second­hand information. There are those who rather than to yield to the evidence of fact will prefer regarding even the planetary gods as "erring" disembodied philosophers if not actually liars. Be it so. Everyone is master of his own wisdom — says a Tibetan proverb and he is at liberty either to honour or degrade his slave —. However I will go on for the benefit of those who may yet seize my explanation of the problem and understand the nature of the solution.

It is the peculiar faculty of the involuntary power of the infinite mind — which no one could ever think of calling God, — to be eternally evolving subjective matter into objective atoms (you will please remember that these two adjectives are used but in a relative sense) or cosmic matter to be later on developed into form. And it is likewise that same involuntary mechanical power that we see so intensely active in all the fixed laws of nature — which governs and controls what is called the Universe or the Cosmos. There are some modern philosophers who would prove the existence of a Creator from motion. We say and affirm that that motion — the universal perpetual motion which never ceases never slackens nor increases its speed not even during the interludes between the pralayas, or "nights of Brahma" but goes on like a mill set in motion, whether it has anything to grind or not (for the pralaya means the temporary loss of every form, but by no means the destruction of cosmic matter which is eternal) — we say this perpetual motion is the only eternal and uncreated Deity we are able to recognise. To regard God as an intelligent spirit, and accept at the same time his absolute immateriality is to conceive of a nonentity, a blank void; to regard God as a Being, an Ego and to place his intelligence under a bushel for some mysterious reasons — is a most consummate nonsense; to endow him with intelligence in the face of blind brutal Evil is to make of him a fiend — a most rascally God. A Being however gigantic, occupying space and having length breadth and thickness is most certainly the Mosaic deity; "No-being" and a mere principle lands you directly in the Buddhistic atheism, or the Vedantic primitive Acosmism. What lies beyond and outside the worlds of form, and being, in worlds and spheres in their most spiritualized state — (and you will perhaps oblige us by telling us where that beyond can be, since the Universe is infinite and limitless) is useless for anyone to search after since even Planetary Spirits have no knowledge or perception of it. If our greatest adepts and Bodhisatvas have never penetrated themselves beyond our solar system, — and the idea seems to suit your preconceived theistic theory wonderfully, my respected Brother — they still know of the existence of other such solar systems, with as mathematical a certainty as any western astronomer knows of the existence of invisible stars which he can never approach or explore. But of that which lies within the worlds and systems, not in the trans-infinitude — (a queer expression to use) — but in the cis-infinitude rather, in the state of the purest and inconceivable immateriality, no one ever knew or will ever tell, hence it is something non-existent for the universe. You are at liberty to place in this eternal vacuum the intellectual or voluntary powers of your deity — if you can conceive of such a thing.

Meanwhile we may say that it is motion that governs the laws of nature; and that it governs them as the mechanical impulse given to running water which will propel them either in a direct line or along hundreds of side furrows they may happen to meet on their way and whether those furrows are natural grooves or channels prepared artificially by the hand of man. And we maintain that wherever there is life and being, and in however much spiritualized a form, there is no room for moral government, much less for a moral Governor — a Being which at the same time has no form nor occupies space! Verily if light shineth in darkness, and darkness comprehends it not, it is because such is the natural law, but how more suggestive and pregnant with meaning for one who knows, to say that light can still less comprehend darkness, nor ever know it since it kills wherever it penetrates and annihilates it instantly. Pure yet a volitional Spirit is an absurdity for volitional mind. The result of organism cannot exist independently of an organized brain, and an organized brain made out of nihil is a still greater fallacy. If you ask me "Whence then the immutable laws? — laws cannot make themselves" — then in my turn I will ask you — and whence their supposed Creator? — a creator cannot create or make himself. If the brain did not make itself, for this would be affirming that brain acted before it existed, how could intelligence, the result of an organized brain, act before its creator was made.

All this reminds one of wrangling for seniorship. If our doctrines clash too much with your theories then we can easily give up the subject and talk of something else. Study the laws and doctrines of the Nepaulese Swabhavikas, the principal Buddhist philosophical school in India, and you will find them the most learned as the most scientifically logical wranglers in the world. Their plastic, invisible, eternal, omnipresent and unconscious Swabhavat is Force or Motion ever generating its electricity which is life.

Yes: there is a force as limitless as thought, as potent as boundless will, as subtile as the essence of life so inconceivably awful in its rending force as to convulse the universe to its centre would it but be used as a lever, but this Force is not God, since there are men who have learned the secret of subjecting it to their will when necessary. Look around you and see the myriad manifestations of life, so infinitely multiform; of life, of motion, of change. What caused these? From what inexhaustible source came they, by what agency? Out of the invisible and subjective they have entered our little area of the visible and objective. Children of Akasa, concrete evolutions from the ether, it was force which brought them into perceptibility and Force will in time remove them from the sight of man. Why should this plant in your garden to the right, have been produced with such a shape and that other one to the left with one totally dissimilar? Are these not the result of varying action of Force — unlike correlations? Given a perfect monotony of activities throughout the world, and we would have a complete identity of forms, colours, shapes and properties throughout all the kingdoms of nature. It is the motion with its resulting conflict, neutralization, equilibration, correlation, to which is due the infinite variety which prevails. You speak of an intelligent and good — (the attribute is rather unfortunately chosen) — Father, a moral guide and governor of the universe and man. A certain condition of things exists around us which we call normal. Under this nothing can occur which transcends our every-day experience "God's immutable laws." But suppose we change this condition and have the best of him without whom even a hair of your head will not fall, as they tell you in the West. A current of air brings to me from the lake near which, with my fingers half frozen I now write to you this letter — I change by a certain combination of electrical magnetic odyllic or other influences the current of air which benumbs my fingers into a warmer breeze; I have thwarted the intention of the Almighty, and dethroned him at my will! I can do that, or when I do not want Nature to produce strange and too visible phenomena, I force my nature-seeing, nature-influencing self within me, to suddenly awake to new perceptions and feelings and thus am my own Creator and ruler.

But do you think that you are right when saying that "the laws arise." Immutable laws cannot arise, since they are eternal and uncreated, propelled in the Eternity and that God himself if such a thing existed, could never have the power of stopping them. And when did I say that these laws were fortuitous per se. I meant their blind correlations, never the laws, or rather the law — since we recognise but one law in the Universe, the law of harmony, of perfect EQUILIBRIUM. Then for a man endowed with so subtle a logic, and such a fine comprehension of the value of ideas in general and that of words especially — for a man so accurate as you generally are to make tirades upon an "all wise, powerful and love-ful God" seems to say at least strange. I do not protest at all as you seem to think against your theism, or a belief in an abstract ideal of some kind, but I cannot help asking you, how do you or how can you know that your God is all wise, omnipotent and love-ful, when everything in nature, physical and moral, proves such a being, if he does exist to be quite the reverse of all you say of him? Strange delusion and one which seems to overpower your very intellect.

The difficulty of explaining the fact that "unintelligent Forces can give rise to highly intelligent beings like ourselves," is covered by the eternal progression of cycles, and the process of evolution ever perfecting its work as it goes along. Not believing in cycles, it is unnecessary for you to learn that which will create but a new pretext for you, my dear Brother, to combat the theory and argue upon it ad infinitum. Nor did I ever become guilty of the heresy I am accused of — in reference to spirit and matter. The conception of matter and spirit as entirely distinct, and both eternal could certainly never have entered my head, however little I may know of them, for it is one of the elementary and fundamental doctrines of Occultism that the two are one, and are distinct but in their respective manifestations, and only in the limited perceptions of the world of senses. Far from "lacking philosophical breadth" then, our doctrines show, but one principle in nature, — spirit-matter or matter-spirit, the third the ultimate Absolute or the quintessence of the two, — if I may be allowed to use an erroneous term in the present application — losing itself beyond the view and spiritual perceptions of even the "Gods" or Planetary Spirits. This third principle say the Vedantic Philosophers — is the only reality, everything else being Maya, as none of the Protean manifestations of spirit-matter or Purusha and Prakriti have ever been regarded in any other light than that of temporary delusions of the senses. Even in the hardly outlined philosophy of Isis this idea is clearly carried out. In the book of Kiu-te, Spirit is called the ultimate sublimation of matter, and matter the crystallization of spirit. And no better illustration could be afforded than in the very simple phenomenon of ice, water, vapour and the final dispersion of the latter, the phenomenon being reversed in its consecutive manifestations and called the Spirit falling into generation or matter. This trinity resolving itself into unity, — a doctrine as old as the world of thought — was seized upon by some early Christians, who had it in the schools of Alexandria, and made up into the Father, or generative spirit; the Son or matter, — man; and into the Holy Ghost, the immaterial essence, or the apex of the equilateral triangle, an idea found to this day in the pyramids of Egypt. Thus once more it is proved that you misunderstand my meaning entirely, whenever for the sake of brevity I use a phraseology habitual with the Western people. But in my turn I have to remark that your idea that matter is but the temporary allotropic form of spirit differing from it as charcoal does from diamond is as unphilosophical as it is unscientific from both the Eastern and the Western points of view, charcoal being but a form of residue of matter, while matter per se is indestructible, and as I maintain coeval with spirit — that spirit which we know and can conceive of. Bereaved of Prakriti, Purusha (Spirit) is unable to manifest itself, hence ceases to exist — becomes nihil. Without spirit or Force, even that which Science styles as "not living" matter, the so-called mineral ingredients which feed plants, could never have been called into form. There is a moment in the existence of every molecule and atom of matter when, for one cause or another, the last spark of spirit or motion or life (call it by whatever name) is withdrawn, and in the same instant with the swiftness which surpasses that of the lightning glance of thought the atom or molecule or an aggregation of molecules is annihilated to return to its pristine purity of intra-cosmic matter. It is drawn to the mother fount with the velocity of a globule of quicksilver to the central mass. Matter, force, and motion are the trinity of physical objective nature, as the trinitarian unity of spirit-matter is that of the spiritual or subjective nature. Motion is eternal because spirit is eternal. But no modes of motion can ever be conceived unless they be in connection with matter.

And now to your extraordinary hypothesis that Evil with its attendant train of sin and suffering is not the result of matter, but may be perchance the wise scheme of the moral Governor of the Universe. Conceivable as the idea may seem to you trained in the pernicious fallacy of the Christian, — "the ways of the Lord are inscrutable" — it is utterly inconceivable for me. Must I repeat again that the best Adepts have searched the Universe during milleniums and found nowhere the slightest trace of such a Machiavellian schemer — but throughout, the same immutable, inexorable law. You must excuse me therefore if I positively decline to lose my time over such childish speculations. It is not "the ways of the Lord" but rather those of some extremely intelligent men in everything but some particular hobby, that are to me incomprehensible.

As you say this need "make no difference between us" — personally. But it does make a world of difference if you propose to learn and offer me to teach. For the life of me I cannot make out how I could ever impart to you that which I know since the very A.B.C. of what I know, the rock upon which the secrets of the occult universe, whether on this or that side of the veil, are encrusted, is contradicted by you invariably and a priori. My very dear Brother, either we know something or we do not know anything. In the first case what is the use of your learning, since you think you know better? In the second case why should you lose your time? You say it matters nothing whether these laws are the expression of the will of an intelligent conscious God, as you think, or constitute the inevitable attributes of an unintelligent, unconscious "God," as I hold. I say, it matters everything, and since you earnestly believe that these fundamental questions (of spirit and matter — of God or no God) "are admittedly beyond both of us" — in other words that neither I nor yet our greatest adepts can know no more than you do, then what is there on earth that I could teach you? You know that in order to enable you to read you have first to learn your letters — yet you want to know the course of events before and after the Pralayas, of every event here on this globe on the opening of a new cycle, namely a mystery imparted at one of the last initiations, as Mr. Sinnett was told, — for my letter to him upon the Planetary Spirits was simply incidental — brought out by a question of his. And now you will say I am evading the direct issue. I have discoursed upon collateral points, but have not explained to you all you want to know and asked me to tell you. I "dodge" as I always do. Pardon me for contradicting you, but it is nothing of the kind. There are a thousand questions I will never be permitted to answer, and it would be dodging were I to answer you otherwise than I do. I tell you plainly you are unfit to learn, for your mind is too full and there is not a corner vacant from whence a previous occupant would not arise, to struggle with and drive away the newcomer. Therefore I do not evade, I only give you time to reflect and deduce and first learn well what was already given you before you seize on something else. The world of force, is the world of Occultism and the only one whither the highest initiate goes to probe the secrets of being. Hence no-one but such an initiate can know anything of these secrets. Guided by his Guru the chela first discovers this world, then its laws, then their centrifugal evolutions into the world of matter. To become a perfect adept takes him long years, but at last he becomes the master. The hidden things have become patent, and mystery and miracle have fled from his sight forever. He sees how to guide force in this direction or that — to produce desirable effects. The secret chemical, electric or odic properties of plants, herbs, roots, minerals, animal tissue, are as familiar to him as the feathers of your birds are to you. No change in the etheric vibrations can escape him. He applies his knowledge, and behold a miracle! And he who started with the repudiation of the very idea that miracle is possible, is straightway classed as a miracle worker and either worshipped by the fools as a demi-god or repudiated by still greater fools as a charlatan! And to show you how exact a science is occultism let me tell you that the means we avail ourselves of are all laid down for us in a code as old as humanity to the minutest detail, but everyone of us has to begin from the beginning, not from the end. Our laws are as immutable as those of Nature, and they were known to man and eternity before this strutting game cock, modern science, was hatched. If I have not given you the modus operandi or begun by the wrong end, I have at least shown you that we build our philosophy upon experiment and deduction — unless you choose to question and dispute this fact equally with all others. Learn first our laws and educate your perceptions, dear Brother. Control your involuntary powers and develop in the right direction your will and you will become a teacher instead of a learner. I would not refuse what I have a right to teach. Only I had to study for fifteen years before I came to the doctrines of cycles and had to learn simpler things at first.

Letter 23a Table of Contents

Letter No. 23a

[K.H.'s Comments etc. appear in bold type. — ED.] Received at Simla: Oct. 1882.

Herewith — apologizing for their number, I send a few notes of interrogation. Perhaps you will be so kind as to take them up from time to time and answer them by ones and twos as leisure and time allow. Memo — At convenience to send A.P.S. those unpublished notes of Eliphas Levi's with annotations by K.H.

Sent long ago to our "Jacko" friend.



(1) There is a very interesting allusion in your last, when speaking of Hume you speak of certain characteristics he brought back with him from his last incarnation.


(2) Have you the power of looking back to the former lives of persons now living, and identifying them?


(3) In that case would it be improper personal curiosity — to ask for any particulars of my own?




(1) All of us, we bring some characteristics from our previous incarnations. It is unavoidable.


(2) Unfortunately, some of us have. I, for one do not like to exercise it.


(3) "Man know thyself," saith the Delphian oracle. There is nothing "improper" — certainly in such a curiosity. Only would it not be still more proper to study our own present personality beforeattempting to learn anything of its creator, — predecessor, and fashioner, — the man that was?Well, some day I may treat you to a little story — no time now — only I promise no details; a simple sketch,and a hint or two to test your intuitional powers.



[For K.H.'s replies to these queries see post Letter 23b. — ED.]


(1) Is there any way of accounting for what seems the curious rush of human progress within the last two thousand years, as compared with the relatively stagnant condition of the fourth round people up to the beginning of modern progress?

(2) Or has there been at any former period during the habitation of the earth by fourth round men, civilizations as great as our own in regard to intellectual development that have utterly passed away?

(3) Even the fifth race (own) of the fourth round began in Asia a million years ago. What was it about for the 998,000 years preceding the last 2,000? During that period have greater civilizations than our own risen and decayed?

(4) To what epoch did the existence of the Continent of Atlantis belong, and did the cataclysmical change which produced its extinction come into any appointed place in the evolution of the round, — corresponding to the place occupied in the whole manvantaric evolution by obscurations?

(5) I find that the most common question asked about occult philosophy by fairly intelligent people who begin to enquire about it is "Does it give any explanation of the origin of evil?" That is a point on which you (6) Closely allied to this question would be another often put. "What is the good of the whole cyclic process if spirit only emerges at the end of all things pure and impersonal as it was at first before its descent into matter?" (And the portions taken away from the fifth?) My answer is that I am not at present engaged in excusing, but in investigating the operations of Nature. But perhaps there may be a better answer available.

(7) Can you, i.e., is it permitted ever to answer any questions relating to matters of physical science? If so — here are some points, that I should greatly like dealt with.

(8) Have magnetic conditions anything to do with the precipitation of rain, or is that due entirely to atmospheric currents at different temperatures encountering other currents of different humidities, the whole set of motions being established by pressures, expansions, etc., due in the first instance to solar energy? If magnetic conditions are engaged, how do they operate and how could they be tested?

(9) Is the sun's corona, an atmosphere? of any known gases? and why does it assume the rayed shape always observed in eclipses?

(10) Is the photometric value of light emitted by stars a safe guide to their magnitude, (1) and is it true as astronomy assumes faute de mieux in the way of a theory, that per square mile the sun's surface emits as much light as can be emitted from any body?

(11) Is Jupiter a hot and still partially luminous body and to what cause, as solar energy has probably nothing to do with the matter, are the violent disturbances of Jupiter's atmosphere due?

(12) Is there any truth in the new Siemens theory of solar combustion, — i.e., that the sun in its passage through space gathers in at the poles combustible gas (which is diffused through all space in a highly attenuated condition), and throws it off again at the equator after the intense heat of that region has again dispersed the elements which combustion temporarily united?

(13) Could any clue be given to the causes of magnetic variations, — the daily changes at given places, and the apparently capricious curvature of the isogonic lines which show equal declinations? For example — why is there a region in Eastern Asia where the needle shows no variation from the true north, though variations are recorded all round that space? (Have your Lordships anything to do with this peculiar condition of things?)

(14) Could any other planets besides those known to modern astronomy (I do not mean mere planetoids) be discovered by physical instruments if properly directed?

(15) When you wrote "Have you experienced monotony during that moment which you considered then and now so consider it, — as the moment of the highest bliss you have ever felt?"


Did you refer to any specific moment and any specific event in my life, or were you merely referring to an X quantity — the happiest moment whatever it might have been?


(16) You say: — "Remember we create ourselves, our Deva Chan, and our Avitchi and mostly during the latter days and even moments of our sentient lives."

(17) But do the thoughts on which the mind may be engaged at the last moment necessarily hinge on to the predominant character of its past life? Otherwise it would seem as if the character of a person's Deva Chan or Avitchi might be capriciously and unjustly determined by the chance which brought some special thought uppermost at last?

(18) "The full remembrance of our lives will come but at the end of the "minor cycle."

Does "minor cycle" here mean one round, or the whole Manvantara of our planetary chain?

(I9) You say "And even the shells of those good men whose pages will not be found missing in the great book of lives: — even they will regain their remembrance and an appearance of self consciousness only after the sixth and seventh principles with the essence of the fifth have gone to their gestation period."


(20) A little later on: — "Whether the personal Ego was good, bad or indifferent, his consciousness leaves him as suddenly as the flame leaves the wick — his perceptive faculties become extinct for ever." (Well? can a physical brain once dead retain its perceptive faculties: that which will perceive in the shell issomething that perceives with a borrowed or reflected light. See notes.)


Then what is the nature of the remembrance and self-consciousness of the shell? This touches on a matter I have often thought about — wishing for further explanation — the extent of personal identity in elementaries.


(21) The spiritual Ego goes circling through the worlds, retaining what it possesses of identity and self-consciousness, always neither more nor less (a) But it is continually evolving personalities, in which at all events the sense of identity while it remains united with them is very complete. (b) Now these personalities I understand to be absolutely new evolutions in each case. A. P. Sinnett is, for what it is worth, — absolutely a new invention. Now it will leave a shell behind which will survive for a time (c) assuming that the spiritual monad temporarily engaged in this incarnation will find enough decent material in the fifth to lay hold of. (d) That shell will have no consciousness directly after death, because "it requires a certain time to establish its new centre of gravity and evolve its perception proper." (e) But how much consciousness will it have when it has done this? (f) Will it still be A. P. Sinnett of which the spiritual Ego, will think, even at the last, as of a person it had known — or will it be conscious that the individuality is gone? Will it be able to reason about itself at all, and to remember anything of its once higher interests. Will it remember the name it bore? (g) or is it only inflated with recollections of this sort in mediumistic presence, remaining asleep at other times? (h) And is it conscious of losing anything that feels like life as it gradually disintegrates?


(22) What is the nature of the life that goes on in the "Planet of Death?" Is it a physical reincarnation with remembrance of past personality, or an astral existence as in Kama Loka? Is it an existence with birth, maturity and decay, or a uniform prolongation of the old personality of this earth under penal conditions?


(23) What other planets of those known to ordinary science, besides Mercury, belong to our system of worlds?


Are the more spiritual planets — (A, B & Y, Z) — visible bodies in the sky or are all those known to astronomy of the more material sort?


(24) Is the Sun (a) as Allan Kardec says: — a habitation of highly spiritualized beings? (b) Is it the vertex of our Manvantaric chain? and of all the other chains in this solar system also?


(25) You say: — it may happen — "that the spiritual spoil from the fifth will prove too weak to be reborn in Deva Chan, in which case it's sixth will then and there reclothe itself in a new body — and enter upon a new earth existence, whether upon this or any other planet."


(26) This seems to want further elucidation. Are these exceptional cases in which two earth lives of the same spiritual monad may occur closer together than the thousand years indicated by some previous letters as the almost inevitable limit of such successive lives?


(27) The reference to the case of Guiteau is puzzling. I can understand his being in a state in which the crime he committed is ever present to his imagination, but how does he "toss into confusion and shuffle the destinies of millions of persons?"


(28) Obscurations are a subject at present wrapped in obscurity.


They take place after the last man of any given round has passed on to the next planet. But I want to make out how the next superior round forms are evolved. When the fifth round spiritual monads arrive what fleshly habitations are ready for them? Going back to the only former letter in which you have dealt with obscurations I find: — (a) "We have traced man out of a round into the Nirvanic state between Z and A. "A" was left in the last round dead. (See note.) As the new round begins it catches the new influx of life, reawakens to vitality, and begets all its kingdoms of a superior order to the last."

(29) But has it to begin at the beginning again between each round, and evolve human forms from animal, these last from vegetable, etc. If so to what round do the first imperfectly evolved men belong? Ex hypothesi to the fifth; but the fifth should be a more perfect race in all respects.

Table of Contents


1. Considered of course in connection with distance as guessed by parallax. (return to text)

Letter No. 23b

[K.H.'s Replies to the Queries in Letter 23a II. — ED.]

(I) The latter end of a very important cycle. Each Round, each ring, as every race has its great and its smaller cycles, on every planet that mankind passes through.

Our fourth Round Humanity has its one great cycle, and so have her races and sub-races. The "curious rush" is due to the double effect of the former — the beginning of its downward course; — and of the latter (the small cycle of your "sub-race") running on to its apex. Remember, you belong to the fifth Race, yet you are but a Western sub-race. Notwithstanding your efforts, what you call civilization is confined only to the latter and its off-shoots in America. Radiating around, its deceptive light may seem to throw its rays on a greater distance than it does in reality. — There is no "rush" in China, and of Japan you make but a caricature.

A student of occultism ought not to speak of the "stagnant condition of the fourth Race people" since history knows next to nothing of that condition "up to the beginning of modern progress" of other nations but the Western. What do you know of America, for instance, before the invasion of that country by the Spaniards? Less than two centuries prior to the arrival of Cortez there was as great a "rush" towards progress among the sub-races of Peru and Mexico as there is now in Europe and the U.S.A. Their sub-race ended in nearly total annihilation through causes generated by itself; so will yours at the end of its cycle. We may speak only of the "stagnant conditions" into which, following the law of development, growth, maturity and decline every race and sub-race falls into during its transition periods. It is that latter condition your Universal History is acquainted with, while it remains superbly ignorant of the condition even India was in, some ten centuries back. Your sub-races are now running toward the apex of their respective cycles, and that History goes no further back than the periods of decline of a few other sub-races belonging most of them to the preceding fourth Race. And what is the area and the period of time embraced by its Universal eye? — At the utmost stretch — a few, miserable dozens of centuries. A mighty horizon, indeed! Beyond — all is darkness for it, nothing but hypotheses. . . . .


(2) No doubt there was. Egyptian and Aryan records and especially our Zodiacal tables furnish us with every proof of it besides our inner knowledge. Civilization is an inheritance, a patrimony that passes from race to race along the ascending and descending paths of cycles. During the minority of a sub-race, it is preserved for it by its predecessor, which disappears, dies out generally, when the former "comes to age." At first, most of them squander and mismanage their property, or leave it untouched in the ancestral coffers. They reject contemptuously the advices of their elders and prefer, boy-like, playing in the streets to studying and making the most of the untouched wealth stored up for them in the records of the Past. Thus during your transition period — the middle ages — Europe rejected the testimony of Antiquity, calling such sages as Herodotus and other learned Greeks — the Father of Lies, until she knew better and changed the appellation into that of "Father of History." Instead of neglecting, you now accumulate and add to your wealth. As every other race you had your ups and downs, your periods of honour and dishonour, your dark midnight and — you are now approaching your brilliant noon. The youngest of the fifth race family you were for long ages the unloved and the uncared for, the Cendrillon in your home. And now, when so many of your sisters have died; and others still are dying, while the few of the old survivors, now in their second infancy, wait but for their Messiah — the sixth race — to resurrect to a new life and start anew with the coming stronger along the path of a new cycle — now that the Western Cendrillon has suddenly developed into a proud wealthy Princess, the beauty we all see and admire — how does she act? Less kind hearted than the Princess in the tale, instead of offering to her elder and less favoured sister, the oldest now, in fact since she is nearly "a million years old" and the only one who has never treated her unkindly, though she may have ignored her, — instead of offering her, I say, the "Kiss of peace" she applies to her the lex talionis with a vengeance that does not enhance her natural beauty. This, my good friend, and brother, is not a far stretched allegory but — history.


(3) Yes; the fifth race — ours — began in Asia a million years ago. What was it about for the 998,000 years preceding the last 2,000? A pertinent question; offered moreover in quite a Christian spirit that refuses to believe that any good could ever have come out from anywhere before and save Nazareth. What was it about? Well, it was occupying itself pretty well in the same way as it does now — craving Mr. Grant Allen's pardon, who would place our primitive ancestor the "hedgehoggy" man, in the early part of the Eocene Age! Forsooth, your scientific writers bestride their hypothesis most fearlessly, I see. It will really be pity to find their fiery steed kicking and breaking their heads some day; something that is unavoidably in store for them. In the Eocene Age — even in its "very first part," the great cycle of the fourth Race men, the Atlanteans — had already reached its highest point, and the great continent, the father of nearly all the present continents — showed the first symptoms of sinking — a process that occupied it down to 11,446 years ago, when its last island, that, translating its vernacular name, we may call with propriety Poseidonis — went down with a crash. By the bye, whoever wrote the Review of Donnelly's Atlantis is right: Lemuria can no more be confounded with the Atlantic Continent than Europe with America. Both sunk and were drowned with their high civilizations and "gods," yet between the two catastrophes, a short period of about 700,000 years elapsed; "Lemuria" flourishing and ending her career just at about that trifling lapse of time before the early part of the Eocene Age, since its race was the third. Behold, the relics of that once great nation in some of the flat headed aborigines of your Australia! No less right is the review in rejecting the kind attempt of the author to people India and Egypt with the refuse of Atlantis. No doubt your geologists are very learned; but why not bear in mind that, under the continents explored and fathomed by them, in the bowels of which they have found the "Eocene Age" and forced it to deliver them its secrets, there may be, hidden deep in the fathomless, or rather unfathomed ocean beds, other, and far older continents whose stratums have never been geologically explored; and that they may some (lay upset entirely their present theories, thus illustrating the simplicity and sublimity of truth as connected with inductive "generalization" in opposition to their visionary conjectures. Why not admit — true no one of them has ever thought of it — that our present continents, have — like "Lemuria" and "Atlantis" — been several times already, submerged and had the time to reappear again, and bear their new groups of mankind and civilization; and that, at the first great geological upheaval, at the next cataclysm — in the series of periodical cataclysms that occur from the beginning to the end of every Round, — our already autopsized continents will go down, and the Lemurias and Atlantises come up again. Think of the future geologists of the sixth and seventh races. Imagine them digging deep in the bowels of what was Ceylon and Simla, and finding implements of the Veddahs, or of the remote ancestor of the civilized Pahari — every object of the civilized portions of humanity that inhabited those regions having been pulverized to dust by the great masses of travelling glaciers, — during the next glacial period — imagine him finding only such rude implements as now found among those savage tribes; and forthwith declaring that during that period primitive man climbed and slept on the trees, and sucked the marrow out of animal bones after breaking them — as civilized Europeans no less than the Veddahs will often do — hence jumping to the conclusion that in the year 1882 A.D., mankind was composed of "man-like animals," black-faced, and whiskered, "with prominent prognathous and large pointed canine teeth." True, a Grant Allen of the sixth race, may be not so far from fact and truth in his conjecture that during the "Simla period" — these teeth were used in the combats of the "males" for grass widows — but then metaphors has very little to do with anthropology and geology. Such is your Science. To return to your questions.

Of course the 4th race had its periods of the highest civilization. Greek and Roman and even Egyptian civilization are nothing compared to the civilizations that began with the 3rd race. Those of the second were not savages but they could not be called civilized. And now, reading one of my first letters on the races (a question first touched by M.) pray, do not accuse either him or myself of some new contradiction. Read it over and see, that it leaves out the question of civilizations altogether and mentions but the degenerate remnants of the fourth and third races, and gives you as a corroboration the latest conclusions of your own Science. Do not regard an unavoidable incompleteness as inconsistency. You now ask me a direct question, and, I answer it. Greeks and Romans were small sub-races, and Egyptians part and parcel of our own "Caucasian" stock. Look at the latter and at India. Having reached the highest civilization and what is more: learning — both went down. Egypt as a distinct sub-race disappearing entirely (her Copts are a hybrid remnant). India — as one of the first and most powerful off-shoots of the mother Race, and composed of a number of sub-races — lasting to these times, and struggling to take once more her place in history some day. That History catches but a few stray, hazy glimpses of Egypt, some 12,000 years back; when, having already reached the apex of its cycle thousands of years before, the latter had begun going down. What does, or can it know of India 5,000 years ago, or of the Chaldees — whom it confounds most charmingly with the Assyrians, making of them one day "Akkadians," at another Turanians and what not? We say then, that your We are refused by the Journal of Science — words repeated and quoted by M.A. (Oxon) with a rapture worthy of a great medium — any claim whatever for "higher knowledge." Says the reviewer: "Suppose the Brothers were to say 'point your telescope to such and such a spot in heavens, and you will find a planet yet unknown to you; or dig into the earth.' . . . etc., and you will find a mineral,' etc." Very fine, indeed, and suppose that was done, what would be the result? Why a charge of plagiarism — since everything of that kind, every "planet and mineral" that exists in space or inside the earth, are known and recorded in our books thousands of years ago; more; many a true hypothesis was timidly brought forward by their own scientific men and as constantly rejected by the majority with whose preconceptions it interfered. Your intention is laudable but nothing that I may give you in answer will ever be accepted from us. Whenever discovered that "it is verily so," the discovery will be attributed to him who corroborated the evidence — as in the case of Copernicus and Galileo, the latter having availed himself but of the Pythagorean MSS.

But to return to "civilizations." Do you know that the Chaldees were at the apex of their Occult fame before what you term as the "bronze Age"? That the "Sons of Ad" or the children of the Fire Mist preceded by hundreds of centuries the Age of Iron, which was an old age already, when what you now call the Historical Period — probably because what is known of it is generally no history but fiction — had hardly begun. We hold — but then what warrant can you give the world that we are right? — that far "greater civilizations than our own have risen and decayed." It is not enough to say as some of your modern writers do — that an extinct civilization existed before Rome and Athens were founded. We affirm that a series of civilizations existed before, as well as after the Glacial Period, that they existed upon various points, of the globe, reached the apex of glory and — died. Every trace and memory had been lost of the Assyrian and Phoenikean civilizations until discoveries began to be made a few years ago. And now they open a new, though not by far one of the earliest pages in the history of mankind. And yet how far back do those civilizations go in comparison with the oldest? — and even them, history is shy to accept. Archeo-geology has sufficiently demonstrated that the memory of man runs back vastly further than history has been willing to accept, and the sacred records of once mighty nations preserved by their heirs are still more worthy of trust. We speak of civilizations of the anteglacial period; and (not only in the minds of the vulgar and the profane but even in the opinion of the highly learned geologist) the claim sounds preposterous. What would you say then to our affirmation that the Chinese — I now speak of the inland, the true Chinaman, not of the hybrid mixture between the fourth and the fifth Races now occupying the throne — the aborigines, who belong in their unallied nationality wholly to the highest and last branch of the fourth Race, reached their highest civilization when the fifth had hardly appeared in Asia, and that its first off-shoot was yet a thing of the future. When was it? Calculate. You cannot think that we, who have such tremendous odds against the acceptance of our doctrine would deliberately go on inventing Races and sub-races (in the opinion of Mr. Hume) were not they a matter of undeniable fact. The group of islands off the Siberian coast discovered by Nordeneskjol of the "Vega" was found strewn with fossils of horses, sheep, oxen, etc., among gigantic bones of elephants, mammoths, rhinoceroses and other monsters belonging to periods when man — says your science — had not yet made his appearance on earth. How came horses and sheep to be found in company with the huge "ante­diluvians"? The horse, we are taught in schools — is quite a modern invention of nature, and no man ever saw its pedactyl ancestor. The group of the Siberian islands may give the lie to the comfortable theory. The region now locked in the fetters of eternal winter uninhabited by man — that most fragile of animals, — will be very soon proved to have had not only a tropical climate — something your science knows and does not dispute, — but having been likewise the seat of one of the most ancient civilisations of that fourth race, whose highest relics now we find in the degenerated Chinaman, and whose lowest are hopelessly (for the profane scientist) intermixed with the remnants of the third. I told you before now, that the highest people now on earth (spiritually) belong to the first sub-race of the fifth root Race; and those are the Aryan Asiatics; the highest race (physical intellectuality) is the last sub-race of the fifth — yourselves the white conquerors. The majority of mankind belongs to the seventh sub-race of the fourth Root race, — the above mentioned Chinamen and their off-shoots and branchlets (Malayans, Mongolians, Tibetans, Javanese, etc., etc., etc.) and remnants of other sub-races of the fourth — and the seventh sub-race of the third race. All these, fallen, degraded semblances of humanity are the direct lineal descendants of highly civilized nations neither the names nor memory of which have survived except in such books as Popalvul and a few others unknown to Science.


(4) To the Miocene times. Everything comes in its appointed time and place in the evolution of Rounds, otherwise it would be impossible for the best seer to calculate the exact hour and year when such cataclysms great and small have to occur. All an adept could do would be to predict an approximate time; whereas now events that result in great geological changes may be predicted with as mathematical a certainty as eclipses and other revolutions in space. The sinking of Atlantis (the group of continents and isles) begun during the Miocene period — as certain of your continents are now observed to be gradually sinking — and it culminated — first, in the final disappearance of the largest continent an event coincident with the elevation of the Alps; and second with that of the last of the fair Islands mentioned by Plato. The Egyptian priests of Sais told his ancestor Solon, that Atlantis (i.e. the only remaining large island) had perished 9,000 years before their time. This was not a fancy date, since they had for milleniums preserved most carefully their records. But then, as I say, they spoke but of the "Poseidonis" and would not reveal even to the great Greek legislator their secret chronology. As there are no geological reasons for doubting, but on the contrary, a mass of evidence for accepting the tradition, Science has finally accepted the existence of the great continent and Archipelago and thus vindicated the truth of one more "fable." It now teaches, as you know that Atlantis, or the remnants of it lingered down to post-tertiary times, its final submergence occurring within the palaeozoic ages of American history! Well, truth and fact ought to feel thankful even for such small favours in the previous absence of any, for so many centuries. The deep sea explorations — especially those of the Challenger have fully confirmed the reports of geology and palaeontology. The great event — the triumph of our "Sons of the Fire Mist" the inhabitants of "Shambullah" (when yet an island in the Central Asian Sea) over the selfish but not entirely wicked magicians of Poseidonis occurred just 11,446 ago. Read in this connection the incomplete and partially veiled tradition, in Isis, Volume I, p. 588-94, and some things may become still plainer to you. The corroboration of tradition and history, brought forward by Donnelly I find in the main correct; but you will find all this and much more in Isis.

(5) It certainly does, and I have touched upon the subject long ago. In my notes on Mr. Hume's MSS., "On God" — that he kindly adds to our Philosophy, something the latter had never contemplated before — the subject is mentioned abundantly. Has he refused you a look into it? For you — I may enlarge my explanations, but not before you have read what I say of the origin of good and evil on those margins. Quite enough was said by me for our present purposes. Strangely enough I found a European author — the greatest materialist of his times, Baron d'Holbach — whose views coincide entirely with the views of our philosophy. When reading his Essais sur la Nature, I might have imagined I had our book of Kiu-ti before me. As a matter of course and of temperament our Universal Pundit will try to catch at those views and pull every argument to pieces. So far he only threatens me to alter his Preface and not to publish the philosophy under his own name. Cuneus cuneum, tradit: I begged him not to publish his essays at all.


M. thinks that for your purposes I better give you a few more details upon Atlantis since it is greatly connected with evil if not with its origin. In the forthcoming Theosophist you will find a note or two appended to Hume's translation of Eliphas Levi's Preface in connection with the lost continent. And now, since I am determined to make of the present answers a volume — bear your cross with Christian fortitude and then, perhaps, after reading the whole you will ask for no more for some time to come. But what can I add to that already told? I am unable to give you purely scientific information since we can never agree entirely with Western conclusions; and that ours will be rejected as "unscientific." Yet both geology and palaeontology bear witness to much we have to say. Of course your Science is right in many of her generalities, but her premises are wrong, or at any rate — very faulty. For instance she is right in saying that while the new America was forming the ancient Atlantis was sinking, and gradually washing away; but she is neither right in her given epochs nor in the calculations of the duration of that sinking. The latter — is the future fate of your British Islands the first on the list of victims that have to be destroyed by fire (submarine volcanos) and water, France and other lands will follow suit. When they reappear again, the last seventh Sub-race of the sixth Root race of present mankind will be flourishing on "Lemuria" and "Atlantis" both of which will have reappeared also (their reappearance following immediately the disappearance of the present isles and continents), and very few seas and great waters will be found then on our globe, waters as well as land appearing and disappearing and shifting periodically and each in turn.


Trembling at the prospect of fresh charges of "contradictions" at some future incomplete statement I rather explain what I mean by this. The approach of every new "obscuration" is always signalled by cataclysms — of either fire or water. But, apart from this, every "Ring" or Root Race has to be cut in two, so to say, by either one or the other. Thus, having reached the apex of its development and glory the fourth Race — the Atlanteans were destroyed by water; you find now but their degenerated, fallen remnants, whose sub-races, nevertheless, aye — each of them, had its palmy days of glory and relative greatness. What they are now — you will be some day the law of cycles being one and immutable. When your race — the fifth — will have reached at its zenith of physical intellectuality, and developed the highest civilization (remember the difference we make between material and spiritual civilizations); unable to go any higher in its own cycle — its progress towards absolute evil will be arrested (as its predecessors the Lemurians and Atlanteans, the men of the third and fourth races were arrested in their progress toward the same) by one of such cataclysmic changes; its great civilization destroyed, and all the sub-races of that race will be found going down their respective cycles, after a short period of glory and learning. See the remnants of the Atlanteans, — the old Greeks and Romans (the modern belong all to the fifth Race); see how great and how short, how evanescent were their days of fame and glory! For, they were but sub-races of the seven off-shoots of the "root race." No mother Race, any more than her sub-races and off-shoots, is allowed by the one Reigning Law to trespass upon the prerogatives of the Race or Sub-race that will follow it; least of all — to encroach upon the knowledge and powers in store for its successor. "Thou shalt not eat of the fruit of Knowledge of Good and Evil of the tree that is growing for thy heirs" we may say with more right than would be willingly conceded us by the Humes of your Sub-race. This "tree" is in our safe-keeping, entrusted to us by the Dhyan Chohans, the protectors of our Race and the Trustees for those that are coming. Try to understand the allegory, and to never lose sight of the hint given you in my letter upon the Planetaries. (1) At the beginning of each Round, when humanity reappears under quite different conditions than those afforded for the birth of each new race and its sub-races, a "Planetary" has to mix with these primitive men, and to refresh their memories, and reveal to them the truths they knew during the preceding Round. Hence the confused traditions about Jehovahs, Ormazds, Osirises, Brahms, and the tutti quanti. But that happens only for the benefit of the first Race. It is the duty of the latter to choose the fit recipients among its sons, who are "set apart" to use a Biblical phrase — as the vessels to contain the whole stock of knowledge, to be divided among the future races and generations until the close of that Round. Why should I say more since you must understand my whole meaning; and that I dare not reveal it in full. Every race had its adepts; and with every new race, we are allowed to give them out as much of our knowledge as the men of that race deserve it. The last seventh Race will have its Buddha as every one of its predecessors had; but, its adepts will be far higher than any of the present race, for among them will abide the future Planetary, the Dhyan Chohan whose duty it will be to instruct or "refresh the memory" of the first race of the fifth Round men after this planet's future obscuration.

En Passant, to show to you that not only were not the "races" invented by us, but that they are a cardinal dogma with the Lama Buddhists and with all who study our esoteric doctrine, I send you an explanation on a page or two in Rhys Davids "Buddhism," — otherwise incomprehensible, meaningless and absurd. It is written with the special permission of the Chohan (my Master) and — for your benefit. No Orientalist has ever suspected the truths contained in it, and — you are the first Western man (outside Tibet) to whom it is now explained.

(6) What emerges at the end of all things is not only "pure and impersonal spirit," but the collective "personal" remembrances skimmed off every new fifth principle in the long series of being. And, if at the end of all things — say in some million of millions years hence, Spirit will have to rest in its pure, impersonal non-existence, as the ONE or the absolute, still there must be "some good" in the cyclic process, since every purified Ego has the chance in the long interims between objective being upon the planets to exist as a Dhyan Chohan — from the lowest "Deva-Chanee" to the highest Planetary, enjoying the fruits of its collective lives.

But what is "Spirit" pure and impersonal per se? Is it possible that you should not have realized yet our meaning? why, such a Spirit is a nonentity, a pure abstraction, an absolute blank to our senses — even to the most spiritual. It becomes something only in union with matter — hence it is always something since matter is infinite and indestructible and non-existent without Spirit which, in matter is Life. Separated from matter it becomes the absolute negation of life and being, whereas matter is inseparable from it. Ask those who offer the objection, whether they know anything of "life" and "consciousness" beyond what they now feel on earth. What conception can they have — unless natural born seers — of the state and consciousness of one's individuality after it has separated itself from gross earthly body? What is the good of the whole process of life on earth — you may ask them, in your turn — if, we are as good as "pure" unconscious entities before birth, during sleep, and, at the end of our career? Is not death, according to the teachings of Science, followed by the same state of unconsciousness as the one before birth? Does not life when it quits our body become as

impersonal as it was before it animated the foetus? Life, after all, — the greatest problem within the ken of human conception is a mystery that the greatest of your men of Science will never solve. In order to be correctly comprehended, it has to be studied in the entire series of its manifestations, otherwise it can never be, not only fathomed, but even comprehended in its easiest form — life, as a state of being on this earth. It can never be grasped so long as it is studied separately and apart from universal life. To solve the great problem one has to become an occultist; to analyze and experience with it personally, in all its phases, as life on earth, life beyond the limit of physical death, mineral, vegetable, animal and spiritual life; life in conjunction with concrete matter as well as life present in the imponderable atom. Let them try and examine, or analyze life apart from organism, and what remains of it? Simply a mode of motion; which, unless our doctrine of the all-Pervading, infinite, omnipresent Life is accepted — though it be accepted on no better terms than a hypothesis only a little more reasonable than their scientific hypotheses which are all absurd — has to remain unsolved.

Shall they object? Well, we will answer them by using their own weapons. We will say that it is, and will remain for ever demonstrated that since motion is all-pervading and absolute rest inconceivable, that under whatever form or mask motion may appear, whether as light, heat, magnetism, chemical affinity or electricity — all these must be but phases of One and the same universal omnipotent Force, a Proteus they bow to, as the Great "Unknown" — (See Herbert Spencer) and we, simply call the "One Life" the "One Law" and the "One Element." The greatest, the most scientific minds on earth, have been keenly pressing forward toward a solution of the mystery, leaving no bye-path unexplored, no thread loose or weak in this darkest of labyrinths for them, and all had to come to the same conclusion — that of the Occultists when given only partially — namely, that life in its concrete manifestations is the legitimate result and consequence of chemical affinity; as to life in its abstract sense, life pure and simple — well, they know no more of it to-day, than they knew in the incipient stage of their Royal Society. They only know that organisms in certain solutions previously free from life will spring up spontaneously (Pasteur and his biblical piety notwithstanding) — owing to certain chemical compositions of such substances. If, as I hope, in a few years, I am entirely my own master — I may have the pleasure of demonstrating to you on your own writing table that life as life is not only transformable into other aspects or phases of the all-pervading Force, but that, it can be actually infused into an artificial man. Frankenstein is a myth only so far as he is the hero of a mystic tale; in nature — he is a possibility; and the physicists and physicians of the last sub-race of the sixth Race will inoculate life and revive corpses, as they now inoculate small-pox, and often less comely diseases. Spirit, life and matter, are not natural principles existing independently of each other, but the effects of combinations produced by eternal motion in Space; and they better learn it.


(7) Most undoubtedly I am so permitted. But then comes the most important point: how far satisfactory will my answers appear — even to you? That not every new law brought to light is regarded as adding a link to the chain of human knowledge is shown by the ill-grace with which every fact unwelcome for some reasons to science, is received by its professors. Nevertheless, whenever I can answer you — I will try to do so, only hoping that you will not send it as a contribution from my pen to the Journal of Science.


(8) Most assuredly they have. Rain can be brought on in a small area of space — artificially and without any claim to miracle or superhuman powers, though its secret is no property of mine that I should divulge it. I am now trying to obtain permission to do so. We know of no phenomenon in nature entirely unconnected with either magnetism or electricity — since, where there are motion, heat, friction, light, there magnetism and its alter ego (according to our humble opinion) — electricity will always appear, as either cause or effect — or rather both if we but fathom the manifestation to its origin. All the phenomena of earth currents, terrestrial magnetism and atmospheric electricity, are due to the fact that the earth is an electrified conductor, whose potential is ever changing owing to its rotation and its annual orbital motion, the successive cooling and heating of the air, the formation of clouds and rain, storms and winds, etc. This you may perhaps, find in some text book. But then Science would be unwilling to admit that all these changes are due to akasic magnetism incessantly generating electric currents which tend to restore the disturbed equilibrium. By directing the most powerful of electric batteries, — human frame electrified by a certain process, you can stop rain on some given point by making "a hole in the rain cloud," as the occultists term it. By using other strongly magnetized implements within, so to say, an insulated area — rain can be produced artificially. I regret my inability to explain to you the process more clearly. You know the effects produced by trees and plants on rain clouds; and how their strong magnetic nature attracts and even feeds those clouds over the tops of the trees. Science explains it otherwise, maybe. Well, I cannot help it, for such is our knowledge and the fruits of milleniums of observations and experience. Were the present to fall into the hands of Hume, he would be sure to remark that I am vindicating the charge publicly brought by him against us: "Whenever unable to answer your arguments (?) they (we) calmly reply that their (our) rules do not admit of this or that."

— Charge notwithstanding, I am compelled to answer that since the secret is not mine I cannot make of it a marketable commodity. Let some physicists calculate the amount of heat required to vaporize a certain quantity of water. Then, let them compute the quantity of rain needed to cover an area — say, of one square mile to a depth of one inch. For this amount of vaporization they will require, of course, an amount of heat that would be equal to at least five million tons of coal. Now the amount of energy of heat that would be equal to at least five million tons of coal. Now the amount of energy of which this consumption of heat would be the equivalent corresponds (as any mathematician could tell you) — to that which would be required to raise a weight of upwards of ten million tons, one mile high. How can one man generate such amount of heat and energy? Preposterous, absurd! — we are all lunatics, and you who listen to us will be placed in the same category if you ever venture to repeat this proposition. Yet I say, that one man alone can do it, and very easily if he is but acquainted with a certain "physico-spiritual" lever in himself, far more powerful than that of Archimedes. Even simple muscular contraction is always accompanied with electric and magnetic phenomena, and there is the strongest connection between the magnetism of the earth, the changes of weather and man, who is the best barometer living, if he but knew to decipher it properly; again, the state of the sky can always be ascertained by the variations shown by magnetic instruments. It is now several years that I had an opportunity of reading the deductions of science upon this subject; therefore, unless I go to the trouble of catching up what I may have remained ignorant of, I do not know the latest conclusions of Science. But with us, it is an established fact that it is the earth's magnetism that produces wind, storms, and rain. What science seems to know of it, is but secondary symptoms always induced by that magnetism and she may very soon find out her present errors. Earth's magnetic attraction of meteoric dust, and the direct influence of the latter upon the sudden changes of temperature especially in the matter of heat and cold, is not a settled question to the present day, I believe. (2) It was doubted whether the fact of our earth passing through a region of space in which there are more or less of meteoric masses has any bearing upon the height of our atmosphere being increased or decreased, or even upon the state of weather. But we think we could easily prove it; and since they accept the fact that the relative distribution and proportion of land and water on our globe may be due to the great accumulation upon it of meteoric dust; snow — especially in our northern regions — being full of meteoric iron and magnetic particles; and deposits of the latter being found even at the bottom of seas and oceans, I wonder how Science has not hitherto understood that every atmospheric change and disturbance was due to the combined magnetism of the two great masses between which our atmosphere is compressed! I call this meteoric dust a "mass" for it is really one. High above our earth's surface the air is impregnated and space filled with magnetic, or meteoric dust, which does not even belong to our solar system. Science having luckily discovered, that, as our earth with all the other planets is carried along through space, it receives a greater proportion of that dust matter on its northern than on its southern hemisphere, knows that to this are due the preponderating number of the continents in the former hemisphere, and the greater abundance of snow and moisture. Millions of such meteors and even of the finest particles reach us yearly and daily and all our temple knives are made of this "heavenly" iron, which reaches us without having undergone any change — the magnetism of the earth keeping them in cohesion. Gaseous matter is continually added to our atmosphere from the never ceasing fall of meteoric strongly magnetic matter, and yet it seems with them still an open question whether magnetic conditions have anything to do with the precipitation of rain or not! I do not know of any "set of motions established by pressures, expansions, etc., due in the first instance to solar energy." Science makes too much and too little at the same time of "solar energy" and even of the Sun itself; and the Sun has nothing to do whatever with rain and very little with heat. I was under the impression that science was aware that the glacial periods as well as those periods when temperature is "like that of the carboniferous age" — are due to the decrease and increase or rather to the expansion of our atmosphere, which expansion is itself due to the same meteoric presence? At any rate, we all know, that the heat that the earth receives by radiation from the sun is at the utmost one third if not less of the amount received by her directly from the meteors.


(9) Call it a chromosphere or atmosphere, it can be called neither; for it is simply the magnetic and ever present aura of the sun, seen by astronomers only for a brief few moments during the eclipse and by some of our chelas — whenever they like — of course while in a certain induced state. A counterpart of what the astronomers call the red flames in the "corona" may be seen in Reichenbach's crystals or in any other strongly

magnetic body. The head of a man — in a strong ecstatic condition, when all the electricity of his system is centred around the brain, will represent — especially in darkness — a perfect simile of the Sun during such periods. The first artist who drew the aureoles about the heads of his Gods and Saints, was not inspired, but represented it on the authority of temple pictures and traditions of the sanctuary and the chambers of initiation where such phenomena took place. The closer to the head or to the aura-emitting body — the stronger and the more effulgent the emanation (due to hydrogen science tells us, in the case of the flames); hence — the irregular red flames around the Sun or the "inner corona." The fact that these are not always present in equal quantity shows only the constant fluctuation of the magnetic matter and its energy, upon which also depend the variety and number of spots. During periods of magnetic inertia the spots disappear, or rather remain invisible. The further the emanation shoots out the more it loses in intensity, until gradually subsiding it fades out; hence — the "outer corona," its rayed shape being due entirely to the latter phenomenon whose effulgence proceeds from the magnetic nature of the matter and the electric energy and not at all from intensely hot particles as asserted by some astronomers. All this is terribly unscientific, nevertheless a fact, to which, I may add another by reminding you that the Sun we see is not at all the central planet of our little Universe, but only its veil or it's reflection. Science has tremendous odds against studying that planet which luckily for us we have not: foremost of all — the constant tremours of our atmosphere which prevent them from judging correctly the little they do see. This impediment was never in the way of the ancient Chaldee and Egyptian astronomers; nor is it an obstacle to us, for we have means of arresting, or counteracting such tremours — acquainted as we are with all the akasic conditions. No more than the rain secret, would this secret — supposing we do divulge it — be of any practical use to your men of Science unless they become Occultists and sacrifice long years to the acquirement of powers. Only fancy a Huxley or a Tyndall studying Yog-vidya! hence the many mistakes into which they fall and the conflicting hypotheses of your best authorities. For instance: the Sun is full of iron vapours — a fact that was demonstrated by the spectroscope showing that the light of the corona consisted largely of a line in the green part of the spectrum, very nearly coinciding with an iron line. Yet Professors Young and Lockyer rejected that, under the witty pretext, if I remember, that, if the corona were composed of minute particles like a dust cloud (and it is this that we call "magnetic matter") these particles would (1) fall upon the sun's body, (2) comets were known to pass through this vapour without any visible effect on them; (3) Professor Young's spectroscope showed that the coronal line was not identical with the iron one, etc. Why they should call those objections "scientific" is more than we can tell.

(1) The reason why the particles — since they call them so — do not fall upon the sun's body, is self-evident. There are forces co-existent with gravitation of which they know nothing; besides that other fact that there is no gravitation properly speaking; only attraction and repulsion. (2) How could comets be affected by the said passage since their "passing through" is simply an optical illusion; they could not pass within the area of attraction without being immediately annihilated by that force, of which no vril can give an adequate idea, since there can be nothing on earth that could be compared with it. Passing as the comets do through a "reflection" no wonder that the said vapour has "no visible effect on these light bodies." (3) The coronal line may not seem identical through the best "grating spectroscope," nevertheless, the corona contains iron as well as other vapours. To tell you of what it does consist is idle, since I am unable to translate the words we use for it, and that no such matter exists (not in our planetary system, at any rate) — but in the sun. The fact is, that what you call the Sun is simply the reflection of the huge "store-house" of our System wherein ALL its forces are generated and preserved; the Sun being the heart and brain of our pigmy Universe, we might compare its faculae — those millions of small, intensely brilliant bodies of which the Sun's surface away from the spots is made up — with the blood corpuscles of that luminary — though some of them as correctly conjectured by science are as large as Europe. Those blood corpuscles are the electric and magnetic matter in its sixth and seventh state. What are those long white filaments twisted like so many ropes, of which the penumbra of the Sun is made up? What — the central part that is seen like a huge flame ending in fiery spires, and the transparent clouds, or rather vapours formed of delicate threads of silvery light, that hangs over those flames — what — but magneto-electric aura — the phlogiston of the Sun? Science may go on speculating for ever, yet so long as she does not renounce two or three of her cardinal errors she will find herself groping for ever in the dark. Some of her greatest misconceptions are found in her limited notions on the law of gravitation; her denial that matter may be imponderable; her newly invented term "force" and the absurd and tacitly accepted idea, that force is capable of existing per se, or of acting any more than life, outside, independent of, or in any other wise than through matter: in other words that force is anything but matter in one of her highest states, — the last three on the ascending scale being denied because only science knows nothing of them; and her utter ignorance of the universal Proteus, its functions and importance in the economy of nature — magnetism and electricity. Tell Science that even in those days of the decline of the Roman Empire, when the tatooed Britisher used to offer to the Emperor Claudius his nazzur of "electron" in the shape of a string of amber beads that even then, there were yet men remaining aloof from the immoral masses, who knew more of electricity and magnetism than they, the men of science, do now, and science will laugh at you as bitterly as she now does over your kind dedication to me. Verily, when your astronomers speaking of sun-matter, term those lights and flames as "clouds of vapour" and "gases unknown to science" (rather!) — chased by mighty whirlwinds and cyclones — whereas we know it to be simply magnetic matter in its usual state of activity — we feel inclined to smile at the expressions. Can one imagine the "Sun's fires fed with purely mineral matter" — with meteorites highly charged with hydrogen giving the "Sun a far-reaching atmosphere of ignited gas"? We know that the invisible Sun is composed of that which has neither name, nor can it be compared to anything known by your science — on earth; and that its "reflection" contains still less of anything like "gases," mineral matter, or fire, though even we when treating of it in your civilized tongue are compelled to use such expressions as "vapour" and "magnetic matter." To close the subject, the coronal changes have no effect upon the earth's climate, though spots have — and Professor N. Lockyer is mostly wrong in his deductions. The Sun is neither a solid nor a liquid, nor yet a gaseous globe; but a gigantic ball of electro­magnetic Forces, the store-house of universal life and motion, from which the latter pulsate in all directions, feeding the smallest atom as the greatest genius with the same material unto the end of the Maha Yug.


(10) I believe not. The stars are distant from us, at least 500,000 times as far as the Sun and some as many times more. The strong accumulation of meteoric matter and the atmospheric tremours are always in the way. If your astronomers could climb on the height of that meteoric dust, with their telescopes and havanas they might trust more than they can now in their photometers. How can they? Neither the real degree of intensity of that light can be known on earth — hence no trustworthy basis for calculating magnitudes and distances can be had, — nor have they hitherto made sure in a single instance (except in the matter of one star in Cassiopeia) which stars shine by reflected and which by their own light. The working of the best double star photometers is deceptive. Of this I have made sure, so far back as in the spring of 1878 while watching the observations made through a Pickering photometer. The discrepancy in the observations upon a star (near Gamma Ceti) amounted at times to half a magnitude. No planets but one have hitherto been discovered outside of the solar system, with all their photometers, while we know with the sole help of our spiritual naked eye a number of them; every completely matured Sun-star having like in our own system several companion planets in fact. The famous "polarization of light" test is as about trustworthy as all others. Of course, the mere fact of their starting from a false premise cannot vitiate either their conclusions or astronomical prophecies, since both are mathematically correct in their mutual relations, and that it answers the given object. The Chaldees nor yet our old Rishis had either your telescopes or photometers; and yet their astronomical predictions were faultless, the mistakes, very slight ones in truth — fathered upon them by their modern rivals — proceeding from the mistakes of the latter.

You must not complain of my too long answers to your very short questions, since I answer you for your instruction as a student of occultism, my "lay" chela, and not at all with a view of answering the Journal of Science. I am no man of science with regard to, or in connection with modern leraning. My knowledge of your Western Sciences is very limited in fact; and you will please bear in mind that all my answers are based upon, and derived from, our Eastern occult doctrines regardless of their agreement or disagreement with those of exact science. Hence, I say: — "The sun's surface emits per square mile, as much light (in proportion) as can be emitted from any body." But what can you mean in this case by "light"? The latter is not an independent principle; and, I rejoiced at the introduction, with a view to facilitate means of observation — of the "diffraction spectrum;" since by abolishing all these imaginary independent existences, such as — heat, actinism, light, etc., it rendered to Occult Science the greatest service, by vindicating in the eyes of her modern sister our very ancient theory that every phenomenon being but the effect of the diversified motions of what we call Akasha (not your ether) there was in fact, but one element, the causative Principle of all. But since your question is asked with a view to settling a disputed point in modern science I will try to answer it in the clearest way I can. I say then, no, and will give you my reasons why. They cannot know it, for the simple reason that heretofore they have in reality found no sure means of measuring the velocity of light. The experiments made by Fizeau and Cornu known as the two best investigators of light in the world of science, notwithstanding the general satisfaction at the results obtained, are not a trustworthy data neither in respect to the velocity with which sunlight travels nor to its quantity. The methods adopted by both these Frenchmen are yielding correct results (at any rate approximately correct, since there is a variation of 227 miles per second between the result of the observations of both experimenters albeit made with the same apparatus) — only as regards the velocity of light between our earth and the upper regions of its atmosphere. Their toothed wheel, revolving at a known velocity records, of course, the strong ray of light which passes through one of the niches of the wheel, and then has its point of light obscured whenever a tooth passes — accurately enough. The instrument is very ingenious and can hardly fail to give splendid results on a journey of a few thousand metres there and back; there being between the Paris observatory and its fortifications no atmosphere, no meteoric masses to impede the ray's progress; and that ray finding quite a different quality of a medium to travel upon than the ether of Space, the ether between the Sun and the meteoric continent above our heads, the velocity of light will of course show some 185,000 and odd miles per second, and your physicists shout "Eureka"! Nor do any of the other devices contrived by science to measure that velocity since 1887 answer any better. All they can say is that their calculations are so far correct. Could they measure light above our atmosphere they would soon find that they were wrong.


(11) It is — so far; but is fast changing. Your science has a theory, I believe, that if the earth were suddenly placed in extremely cold regions — for instance where it would exchange places with Jupiter — all our seas and rivers would be suddenly transformed into solid mountains; the air, — or rather a portion of the aeriform substances which compose it — would be metamorphosed from their state of invisible fluid owing to the absence of heat into liquids (which now exist on Jupiter, but of which men have no idea on earth). Realize, or try to imagine the — reverse condition, and it will be that of Jupiter at the present moment.


The whole of our system is imperceptibly shifting its position in space. The relative distance between planets remaining ever the same, and being in no wise affected by the displacement of the whole system; and the distance between the latter and the stars and other suns being so incommensurable as to produce but little if any perceptible change for centuries and milleniums to come; — no astronomer will perceive it telescopically, until Jupiter and some other planets, whose little luminous points hide now from our sight millions upon millions of stars (all but some 5000 or 6000) — will suddenly let us have a peep at a few of the Raja-Suns they are now hiding. There is such a king-star right behind Jupiter, that no mortal physical eye has ever seen during this, our Round. Could it be so perceived it would appear, through the best telescope with a power of multiplying its diameter ten thousand times, — still a small dimensionless point, thrown into the shadow by the brightness of any planet; nevertheless — this world is thousands of times larger than Jupiter. The violent disturbance of its atmosphere and even its red spot that so intrigues science lately, are due — (1) to that shifting and (2) to the influence of that Raja-Star. In its present position in space imperceptibly small though it be — the metallic substances of which it is mainly composed are expanding and gradually transforming themselves into aeriform fluids — the state of our own earth and its six sister globes before the first Round — and becoming part of its atmosphere. Draw your inferences and deductions from this, my dear "lay" chela, but beware lest in doing so you sacrifice your humble instructor and the occult doctrine itself, on the altar of your wrathful Goddess — modern science.


(12) I am afraid not much, since our Sun is but a reflection. The only great truth uttered by Siemens is that inter-stellar space is filled with highly attenuated matter, such as may be put in air vacuum tubes, and which stretches from planet to planet and from star to star. But this truth has no bearing upon his main facts. The sun gives all and takes back nothing from its system. The sun gathers nothing "at the poles" — which are always free even from the famous "red flames" at all times, not only during the eclipses. How is it that with their powerful telescopes they have failed to perceive any such "gathering" since their glasses show them even the "superlatively fleecy clouds" on the photosphere? Nothing can reach the sun from without the boundaries of its own system in the shape of such gross matter as "attenuated gases." Every bit of matter in all its seven states is necessary to the vitality of the various and numberless systems — worlds in formation, suns awakening anew to life, etc., and they have none to spare even for their best neighbours and next of kin. They are mothers, not stepmothers, and would not take away one crumb from the nutrition of their children. The latest theory of radiant energy which shows that there is no such thing in nature, properly speaking, as chemical light, or heat ray is the only approximately correct one. For indeed, there is but one thing — radiant energy which is inexhaustible and knows neither increase nor decrease and will go on with its self-generating work to the end of the Solar manvantara. The absorption of Solar Forces by the earth is tremendous; yet it is, or may be demonstrated that the latter receives hardly 25 per cent. of the chemical power of its rays, for these are despoiled of 75 per cent. during their vertical passage through the atmosphere at the moment they reach the outer boundary "of the aerial ocean." And even those rays lose about 20 per cent. in illuminating and caloric power — we are told. What with such a waste must then be the recuperative power of our Father-Mother Sun? Yes; call it "Radiant Energy" if you will: we call it Life — all-pervading, omnipresent life, ever at work in its great laboratory — the SUN.

(13) None can ever be given by your men of Science, whose "bumptiousness" makes them declare that only to those for whom the word magnetism is a mysterious agent the supposition that the Sun is a huge magnet can account for the production by that body of light, heat and the causes of magnetic variations as perceived on our earth. They are determined to ignore and thus reject the theory suggested to them by Jenkins of the


R.A.S. of the existence of strong magnetic poles above the surface of the earth. But the theory, is the correct one nevertheless, and one of these poles revolves around the north pole in a periodical cycle of several hundred years. Halley and Handsteen — besides Jenkins — were the only scientific men that ever suspected it. Your question is again answered by reminding you of another exploded supposition. Jenkins did his best some three years ago to prove that it is the north end of the compass needle that is the true north pole, and not the reverse as the current scientific theory maintains. He was informed that the locality in Boothia where Sir James Ross located the earth's north magnetic pole, was purely imaginary: it is not there. If he (and we) are wrong, then the magnetic theory that like poles repel and unlike poles attract, must also be declared a fallacy; since if the north end of the dipping needle is a south pole then its pointing to the ground in Boothia — as you call it — must be due to attraction? And if there is anything there to attract it, why is it that the needle in London is attracted neither to the ground in Boothia nor to the earth's centre? As very correctly argued, if the north pole of the needle pointed almost perpendicularly to the ground in Boothia, it is simply because it was repelled by the true north magnetic pole when Sir J. Ross was there about half a century ago.

No; our "Lordships" have nothing to do with the inertia of the needle. It is due to the presence of certain metals in fusion in that locality. Increase of temperature diminishes magnetic attraction, and a sufficiently high temperature destroys it often altogether. The temperature I am speaking of is, in the present case rather an aura, an emanation than anything science knows of. Of course, this explanation will never hold water with the present knowledge of science. But we can wait and see. Study magnetism with the help of occult doctrines, and then that which now will appear incomprehensible, absurd in the light of physical science, will become all clear.


(14) They must be. Not all of the Intra-Mercurial planets, nor yet those in the orbit of Neptune are yet discovered, though they are strongly suspected. We know that such exist and where they exist; and that there are innumerable planets "burnt out" they say, — in obscuration we say; — planets in formation and not yet luminous, etc. But then "we know" is of little use to science, when the Spiritualists will not admit our knowledge. Edison's tasimeter adjusted to its utmost degree of sensitiveness and attached to a large telescope may be of great use when perfected. When so attached the "tasimeter" will afford the possibility not only to measure the heat of the remotest of visible stars, but to detect by their invisible radiations stars that are unseen and otherwise undetectable, hence planets also. The discoverer, an F.T.S., a good deal protected by M. thinks that if, at any point in a blank space of heavens — a space that appears blank even through a telescope of the highest power — the tasimeter indicates an accesion of temperature and does so invariably, this will be a regular proof that the instrument is in range with the stellar body either non-luminous or so distant as to be beyond the reach of telescopic vision. His tasimeter, he says, "is affected by a wider range of etheric undulations than the eye can take cognizance of." Science will hear sounds from certain planets before she sees them. This is a prophecy. Unfortunately I am not a Planet, — not even a "planetary." Otherwise I would advise you to get a tasimeter from him and thus avoid me the trouble of writing to you. I would manage then to find myself "in range" with you.


(15) No, good friend; I am not as indiscreet as all that, I left you simply to your own reminiscences. Every mortal creature, even the less favoured by Fortune, has such moments of relative happiness at some time of his life. Why shouldn't you?  

Yes, it was an X quantity I referred to.


(16) It is a widely spread belief among all the Hindus that a person's future pre-natal state and birth are moulded by the last desire he may have at the time of death. But this last desire, they say, necessarily hinges on to the shape which the person may have given to his desires, passions, etc., during his past life. It is for this very reason, viz. — that our last desire may not be unfavourable to our future progress — that we have to watch our actions and control our passions and desires throughout our whole earthly career.


(17) It cannot be otherwise. The experience of dying men — by drowning and other accidents — brought back to life, has corroborated our doctrine in almost every case. Such thoughts are involuntary and we have no more control over them than we would over the eye's retina to prevent it perceiving that colour which affects it most. At the last moment, the whole life is reflected in our memory and emerges from all the forgotten nooks and corners picture after picture, one event after the other. The dying brain dislodges memory with a strong supreme impulse, and memory restores faithfully every impression entrusted to it during the period of the brain's activity. That impression and thought which was the strongest naturally becomes the most vivid and survives so to say all the rest which now vanish and disappear for ever, to reappear but in Deva Chan. (3) No man dies insane or unconscious — as some physiologists assert. Even a madman, or one in a fit of delirium, tremens will have his instant of perfect lucidity at the moment of death, though unable to say so to those present. The man may often appear dead. Yet from the last pulsation, from and between the last throbbing of his heart and the moment when the last spark of animal heat leaves the body — the brain thinks and the Ego lives over in those few brief seconds his whole life over again. Speak in whispers, ye, who assist at a death-bed and find yourselves in the solemn presence of Death. Especially have you to keep quiet just after Death has laid her clammy hand upon the body. Speak in whispers, I say, lest you disturb the quiet ripple of thought, and hinder the busy work of the Past casting on its reflection upon the Veil of the Future.


(18) Yes; the "full" remembrance of our lives (collective lives) will return back at the end of all the seven Rounds, at the threshold of the long, long Nirvana that awaits us after we leave Globe Z. At the end of isolated Rounds, we remember but the sum total of our last impressions, those we had selected, or that have rather forced themselves upon us and followed us in Deva Chan. Those are all "probationary" lives with large indulgences and new trials afforded us with every new life. But at the close of the minor cycle, after the completion of all the seven Rounds, there awaits us no other mercy but the cup of good deeds, of merit, outweighing that of evil deeds and demerit in the scales of Retributive Justice. Bad, irretrievably bad must be that Ego that yields no mite from its fifth Principle, and has to be annihilated, to disappear in the Eighth Sphere. A mite, as I say, collected from the Personal Ego suffices to save him from the dreary Fate. Not so after the completion of the great cycle: either a long Nirvana of Bliss (unconscious though it be in the, and according to, your crude conceptions); after which — life as a Dhyan Chohan for a whole Manvantara, or else "Avitchi Nirvana" and a Manvantara of misery and Horror as a —— you must not hear the word nor I — pronounce or write it. But "those" have nought to do with the mortals who pass through the seven spheres. The collective Karma of a future Planetary is as lovely as the collective Karma of a —— is terrible. Enough. I have said too much already.


(19) Verily so. Until the struggle between the higher and middle duad begins — (with the exception of suicides who are not dead but have only killed their physical triad, and whose Elemental parasites, therefore, are not naturally separated from the Ego as in real death) — until that struggle, I say, has not begun and ended, no shell can realize its position. When the sixth and seventh principles are gone, carrying off with them the finer, spiritual portions of that, which once was the personal consciousness of the fifth, then only does the shell gradually develop a kind of hazy consciousness of its own from what remains in the shadow of personality. No contradiction here, my dear friend, — only haziness in your own perceptions.


(20) All that which pertains to the materio-psychological attributes and sensations of the five lower skandhas; all that which will be thrown off as a refuse by the newly born Ego in the Deva Chan, as unworthy of, and not sufficiently related to the purely spiritual perceptions, emotions and feelings of the sixth, strengthened, and so to say, cemented by a portion of the fifth, that portion which is necessary in the devachan for the retention of a divine spiritualized notion of the "I" in the Monad — which would otherwise, have no consciousness in relation to object and subject at all — all this "becomes extinct for ever": namely at the moment of physical death, to return once more, marshalling before the eye of the new Ego at the threshold of Deva Chan and to be rejected by It. It will return for the third time fully at the end of the minor cycle, after the completion of the seven Rounds when the sum total of collective existences is weighed — "merit" — in one cup, "demerit" in the other cup of the scales. But in that individual, in the Ego — "good, bad, or indifferent" in the isolated personality, — consciousness leaves as suddenly as "the flame leaves the wick." Blow out your candle, good friend. The flame has left that candle "for ever"; but are the particles that moved, their motion producing the objective flame annihilated or dispersed for all that? Never. Relight the candle and the same particles drawn by mutual affinity will return to the wick. Place a long row of candles on your table. Light one and blow it out; then light the other and do the same; a third and fourth, and so on. The same matter, the same gaseous particles — representing in our case the Karma of the personality — will be called forth by the conditions given them by your match, to produce a new luminosity; but can we say that candle No. 1 has not had its flame extinct for ever? Not even in the case of the "failures of nature," of the immediate reincarnation of children and congenital idiots, etc., that so provoked the wrath of C.C.M., can we call them the identical ex-personalities; though the whole of the same life-principle and identically the same MANAS (fifth principle) re-enters a new body and may be truly called a "reincarnation of the personality" — whereas, in the rebirth of the Egos from devachans and avitchis into Karmic life it is only the spiritual attributes of the Monad and its Buddhi that are reborn. All we can say of the reincarnated "failures" is, that they are the reincarnated Manas, the fifth principle of Mr. Smith or Miss Grey, but not certainly that these are the reincarnations of Mr. S. and Miss G. Therefore, the explanation, clear and concise (though perhaps less literary than you might make it) given to C.C.M. in the Theosophist in answer to his spiteful hit in Light, is not only correct but candid also; and both yourself and C.C.M. were unjust to Upasika and even to myself who told her what to write; since even you mistook my wail and lament at the confused and tortured explanations in Isis (for its incompleteness no one but we, her inspirers are responsible) and my complaint of having had to exercise all my "ingenuity" to make the thing plain, for an avowal of ingeniousness in the sense of cunning and craft, whereas ingenuousness — a sincere desire (though very difficult of realization) to mend and clear up the misconception — was meant by me. I do not know of anything since the very beginning of our correspondence that displeased the Chohan so much as that. But we must not return to the subject again.

But what is then "the nature of the remembrance and self-consciousness of the shell?" you ask. As I said in your note — no better than a reflected or borrowed light. "Memory" is one thing, and "perceptive faculties" quite another. A madman may remember very clearly some portions of his past life; yet he is unable to perceive anything in its true light for the higher portion of his Manas and his Buddhi are paralysed in him, have left him. Could an animal — a dog, for instance — speak, he would prove you that his memory in direct relation to his canine personality, is as fresh as yours; nevertheless his memory and instinct cannot be called "perceptive faculties." A dog remembers that his master thrashed him when the latter gets hold of his stick — at all other times he has no remembrance of it. Thus with a shell; once in the aura of a medium, all he perceives through the borrowed organs of the medium and of those in magnetic sympathy with the latter, he will perceive very clearly — but not further than what the shell can find in the perceptive faculties and memories of circle and medium — hence often the rational and at times highly intelligent answers; hence also a complete oblivion of things known to all but that medium and circle. The shell of a highly intelligent, learned, but utterly unspiritual man who died natural death, will last longer and the shadow of his own memory helping — that shadow which is the refuse of the sixth principle left in the fifth — he may deliver discourses through trance speakers and repeat parrot-like that which he knew of and thought much over it, during his life-time. But find me one single instance in the annals of Spiritualism where a returning shell of a Faraday or a Brewster (for even they were made to fall into the trap of mediumistic attraction) said one word more than it knew during its life-time. Where is that scientific shell, that ever gave evidence of that, which is claimed on behalf of the "disembodied Spirit" — namely, that a free Soul, the Spirit disenthralled from its body's fetters perceives and sees that which is concealed from living mortal eyes? Challenge the Spiritualists fearlessly, I say! Defy the best, the most reliable of mediums — Stainton Moses for one — to give you through that high disembodied shell, that he mistakes for the "Imperator" of the early days of his mediumship, to tell you what you will have hidden in your box, if S.M. does not know it; or to repeat to you a line from a Sanskrit manuscript unknown to his medium, or anything of that kind. Prohpudor! Spirits they call them? Spirits with personal remembrances? As well call personal remembrances the sentences screeched out by a parrot. Why don't you ask C.C.M. to test +? Why not settle his and your mind at rest by suggesting to him to ask a friend or an acquaintance unknown to S.M. — to select an object the nature of which will remain in its turn unknown to C.C.M., and then see whether + will be able to name that object — something possible even to a good clairvoyant. Let the "Spirit" of Zollner — now that he is in the "fourth dimension of space," and has put up an appearance already with several mediums — tell them the last word of his discovery, complete his astro-physical philosophy. No; Zollner when lecturing through an intelligent medium, surrounded with persons who read his works, are interested in them — will repeat on various tones that which is known to others (not even that which he alone knew, most probably), the credulous, ignorant public confounding the post-hoc with the propter-hoc and firmly convinced of the Spirit's identity. Indeed, it will be worth your while to stimulate investigation in this direction. Yes; personal consciousness does leave everyone at death; and when even the centre of memory is re-established in the shell, it will remember and speak out its recollections but through the brain of some living human being. Hence —  

(21) — A more or less complete, still dim recollection of its personality, and of its purely physical life. As in the cases of complete insanity the final severance of the two higher duads (7th 6th and 5th 4th) at the moment of the former going into gestation, digs an impassable gulf between the two. It is not even a portion of the fifth that is carried away — least of all 2 1/2 principles as Mr. Hume crudely puts it in his Fragments that go into Deva Chan leaving but l 1/2 principles behind. The Manas shorn of its finest attributes, becomes like a flower from which all the aroma has suddenly departed, a rose crushed, and having been made to yield all its oil for the attar manufacture purposes; what is left behind is but the smell of decaying grass, earth and rottenness.


(a) Question the second is sufficiently answered, I believe. (Your second para.) The Spiritual Ego goes on evolving personalities, in which "the sense of identity" is very complete while living. After their separation from the physical Ego, that sense returns very dim, and belongs wholly to the recollections of the physical man. The shell may be a perfect Sinnett when wholly engrossed in a game of cards at his club, and when either losing or winning a large sum of money — or a Babu Smut Murky Dass trying to cheat his principal out of a sum of rupees. In both cases — ex-editor and Babu will — as shells, remind anyone who will have the privilege of enjoying an hour's chat with the illustrious dis-embodied angels, more of the inmates of a lunatic asylum made to play parts in private theatricals as means of hygienic recreation, than of the Caesars and Hamlets they would represent. The slightest shock will throw them off the track and send them off raving.


(b) An error. A. P. Sinnett is not "an absolutely new invention." He is the child and creation of his antecedent personal self; the Karmic progeny for all he knows, of Nonius Asprena, Consul of the Emperor Domitian — (94 A.D.) together with Arricinius Clementus, and friend of the Flamen Dealis of that day (the high priest of Jupiter and chief of the Flamenes) or of that Flamens himself — which would account for A.P. Sinnett's suddenly developed love for mysticism. A.P.S. — the friend and brother of K.H. will go to Deva Chan; and A.P.S., the Editor and the lawn-tennis man; the Don Juan, in a mild way, in the palmy days of "Saints, Sinners and Sceneries," identifying himself by mentioning a usually covered mole or scar, — will, perhaps, be abusing the Babus through a medium to some old friend in California or London.


(c) It will find "enough decent material" and to spare. A few years of Theosophy will furnish it.

 (d) Perfectly correctly defined.  

(e) As much as there is of the personality — in A.P.S.'s reflection in the looking glass — of the real, living




(f) The Spiritual Ego will not think of the A.P.S. the shell, any more than it will think of the last suit of clothes it wore; nor will it be conscious that the individuality is gone, since that only individuality and Spiritual personality it will then behold in itself alone. Nosce te ipsum is a direct command of the oracle to the Spiritual monad in Deva Chan; and the "heresy of Individuality" is a doctrine propounded by Tathagatha with an eye to the Shell. The latter whose bumptiousness is as proverbial as that of the medium when reminded that it is A.P.S. — will echo out: "Of course, no doubt, hand me over some preserved peaches I devoured with such an appetite for breakfast, and a glass of claret!" — and who after this who knew A.P.S. at Allahabad, will dare doubt his identity? And, when left alone for one short instant by some disturbance in the circle, or the thought of the medium wandering for a moment to some other person — that shell will begin to hesitate in its thoughts whether it is A.P.S., S. Wheeler, or Ratigan; and end by assuring itself it is Julius Caesar. (g) — and by finally "remaining asleep."


(h) No; it is not conscious of this loss of cohesion. Besides, such a feeling in a shell being quite useless for nature's purposes, it could hardly realize something that could be never even dreamed by a medium or its affinities. It is dimly conscious of its own physical death — after a prolonged period of time though — that's all. The few exceptions to this rule — cases of half successful sorcerers, of very wicked persons passionately attached to Self — offer a real danger to the living. These very material shells, whose last dying thought was Self, — Self, — Self — and to live, to live! will often feel it instinctively. So do some suicides — though not all. What happens then is terrible for it becomes a case of post mortem licanthropy. The shell will cling so tenaciously to its semblance of life that it will seek refuge in a new organism in any beast — in a dog, a hyζna, a bird when no human organism is close at hand — rather than submit to annihilation.

(22) A question I have no right to answer.


(23) Mars and four other planets of which astronomy knows yet nothing. Neither A, B, nor Y, Z, are known; nor can they be seen through physical means however perfected.


(24) Most decidedly not. Not even a Dhyan Chohan of the lower orders could approach it without having its body consumed, or rather annihilated. Only the highest "Planetary" can scan it. (b) Not unless we call it the vertex of an angle. But it is the vertex of all the "chains" collectively. All of us dwellers of the chains — we will have to evolute, live and run the up and down scale in that highest and last of the septenaries chains (on the scale of perfection) before the Solar Pralaya snuffs out our little system.


(25 & 26) . . . "in which case it" — the "it" relates to the sixth and seventh principles, not to the fifth, for the manas will have to remain a shell in each case; only in the one in hand it will have no time to visit mediums: for it begins sinking down to the eighth sphere almost immediately. "Then and there" in the eternity may be a mighty long period. It means only that the monad having no Karmic body to guide its rebirth falls into non-being for a certain period and then reincarnates — certainly not earlier than a thousand or two thousand years. No, it is not an "exceptional case." Save a few exceptional cases in the case of the initiated such as our Teshu-Lamas and the Boddhisatwas and a few others, no monad gets ever reincarnated before its appointed cycle.


(27) "How does he toss into confusion." . . . If instead of doing to-day something you have to do you put it off till the next day — does not even this — invisibly and imperceptibly at first, yet as forcibly — throw into confusion many a thing, and in some cases even shuffle the destinies of millions of persons, for good, for evil, or simply in connection with a change, — may be unimportant in itself — still a change? And do you mean to say that such an unexpected, horrid murder has not influenced the destinies of millions?


(28) Here we are, again. Verily ever since I had the folly of touching upon this subject — i.e. of harnessing the cart before the horse — my nights are bereft of their hitherto innocent sleep! For Heaven's sake take into consideration the following facts and put them together, if you can. (1) The individual units of mankind remain 100 times longer in the transitory spheres of effects than on the globes; (2) The few men of the fifth Round do not beget children of the fifth but of your fourth Round. (3) That the "obscurations" are not Pralayas, and that they last in a proportion of 1 to 10, i.e., if a Ring or whatever we call it, the period during which the seven Root races have to develop and reach their last appearance upon a globe during that Round  lasts say 10 millions of years, (of course it lasts far longer) then the "obscuration" will last no longer than one million. When our globe having got rid of its last fourth Round men and a few, very few of the fifth, goes to sleep, during the period of its rest the fifth Round men will be resting in their devachans and Spiritual lokas  far longer at any rate than the fourth Round "angels" in theirs since they are far more perfect. A contradiction, and a "lapsus calami of M." — says Hume; because M. wrote something quite correct though he is no more infallible than I am and might have expressed himself, more than once, very carelessly.


"I want to make out how the next superior Round forms are evolved." My friend, try to understand that you are putting me questions pertaining to the highest initiations. That I can give you a general view, but that I dare not nor will I enter upon details — though I would if I could satisfy you. Do not you feel that it is one of the highest mysteries than which there is no higher one?


(a) "Dead" but to resurrect in greater glory. Is not what I say, plain?


(29) Of course not, since it is not destroyed, but remains crystallized, so to say — statu quo. At each Round there are less and less animals — the latter themselves evoluting into higher forms. During the first Round it is they that were the "kings of creation." During the seventh men will have become Gods and animals — intelligent beings. Draw your inferences. Beginning with the second Round, already evolution proceeds on quite a different plan. Everything is evolved and has but to proceed on its cyclic journey and get perfected. It is only the first Round that man becomes from a human being on Globe B. a mineral, a plant, an animal on Planet C. The method changes entirely from the second Round; but — I have learned prudence with you; and will say nothing before the time for saying it has come. And now, you had a volume; when will you digest it? Of how many contradictions will I have to be suspected before you understand the whole correctly?

Yours nevertheless, and very sincerely,

K. H.

Letter 24a Table of Contents


 The letter in answer to yours, I believe, where you question me about C.C.M., S.M. and Mrs. K. (return to text)

 Dr. Phipson in 1867 and Cowper Ranyard in 1879 both urged the theory but it was rejected then. (return to text)

 Good gracious! had I forgotten in my hurry to add the last five words, would not I have caught it as a charge of flat contradiction! (return to text)


Letter 24a


[The numbers in brackets refer to K.H.'s replies, for which see Letter XXIVb. page 185 et seq. — Ed.]

Received Autumn 1882.

I hope you will give me great credit for obedience in having laboriously and against my inclination endeavoured to compile a case for the plaintiff in re the alleged contradictions. As I have said elsewhere these appear to me not much worth worrying about; though for the present they leave me cloudy in my ideas about Deva Chan and the victims of accident. It is because they do not fret me that I have never hitherto acted on your suggestion that I should make notes of them.


Hume has been inclined to trace contradictions in some letters referring to the evolution of man, but in conversation with him I have always contended that these are not contradictions at all, — merely due to a confusion about rounds and races — a matter of language. Then he has pretended to think that you have built up the philosophy as you have gone on, and got out of the difficulty by inventing a great many more races than were contemplated at first, which hypothesis I have always ridiculed as absurd.


I have not re-copied here the passages about victims of accident quoted in my letter of the 12th August and in apparent conflict with the corrections on the proof of my Letter on Theosophy. You have already said apropos to these quotations, on back of mine dated August 12th: —


I can easily understand we are accused of contradictions and inconsistencies aye even to writing one thing to­day and denying it to-morrow. Could you but know how I write my letters and the time I am enabled to give to them perchance you would feel less critical if not exacting ----"


This passage it was which led me to think it might be that some of the earlier letters had been perhaps the "victim of accident" itself.

But to go on with the case for the plainfiff: —


Most of those whom you may call, if you like, candidates for Deva Chan die and are reborn in the Kama loka without remembrance. . . . You can hardly call remembrance a dream of yours, some particular scene or scenes within whose narrow limits you would find enclosed a few persons. . . etc., call it the personal remembrance of A. P. Sinnett if you can." Notes on back of mine to Old Lady.


"Certainly, the new Ego, once that it is reborn in the Deva Chan retains for a certain time proportionate to its Earth life, a 'complete recollection of his spiritual life on Earth.' Long Devachan letter.


All those who have not slipped down into the mire of unredeemable sin and bestiality — go to the Deva chan,



It (Devachan) is an idealed paradise in each case of the Ego's own making and by him filled with the scenery crowded with the incidents and thronged with the people he would expect to find in such a sphere of compensative bliss. Ibid.


Nor can we call it a full but only a partial remembrance. X. Love and hatred are the only immortal feelings, the only survivors from the wreck of the Ye-damma or phenomenal world. Imagine yourself in Devachan then, with those you may have loved with such immortal love, with the familiar shadowy scenes connected with them for a background, and a perfect blank for everything else relating to your interior social political and literary life — Former letter: i.e. Notes.


Since the conscious perception of one's personality on Earth is but an evanescent dream, that sense will be equally that of a dream in the Devachan — only a hundred fold intensified." Long Devachan letter.


". . . . a connoisseur who passes aeons in the rapt delight of listening to divine symphonies by imaginary angelic choirs and orchestras." Long letter. See (9) X ante. See my notes 10 and 11 about Wagner etc.

You say:


"In no case then, with the exception of suicides and shells is there any possibility for any other to be attracted to a seance room." Notes.


"On margin I said rarely but I have not pronounced the word never." Appended to mine of 12th Aug.

Table of Contents

Letter No. 24b


At this stage of our correspondence, misunderstood as we generally seem to be, even by yourself, my faithful friend, it may be worth our while and useful for both, that you should be posted on certain facts — and very important facts — connected with adept-ship. Bear in mind then, the following points.


(1) An adept — the highest as the lowest — is one only during the exercise of his occult powers.


(2) Whenever these powers are needed, the sovereign will unlocks the door to the inner man (the adept,) who can emerge and act freely but on condition that his jailor — the outer man will be either completely or partially paralyzed — as the case may require; viz: either (a) mentally and physically; (b) mentally, — but not physically; (c) physically but not entirely mentally; (d) neither, — but with an akasic film interposed between the outer and the inner man.


(3) The smallest exercise of occult powers then, as you will now see, requires an effort. We may compare it to the inner muscular effort of an athlete preparing to use his physical strength. As no athlete is likely to be always amusing himself at swelling his veins in anticipation of having to lift a weight, so no adept can be supposed to keep his will in constant tension and the inner man in full function, when there is no immediate necessity for it. When the inner man rests the adept becomes an ordinary man, limited to his physical senses and the functions of his physical brain. Habit sharpens the intuitions of the latter, yet is unable to make them supersensuous. The inner adept is ever ready, ever on the alert, and that suffices for our purposes. At moments of rest then, his faculties are at rest also. When I sit at my meals, or when I am dressing, reading or otherwise occupied I am not thinking even of those near me; and, Djual Khool can easily break his nose to blood, by running in the dark against a beam, as he did the other night — (just because instead of throwing a "film" he had foolishly paralyzed all his outer senses while talking to and with a distant friend) — and I remained placidly ignorant of the fact. I was not thinking of him — hence my ignorance.


From the aforesaid, you may well infer, that an adept is an ordinary mortal, at all the moments of his daily life but those — when the inner man is acting.

Couple this with the unpleasant fact that we are forbidden to use one particle of our powers in connexion with the Eclectics (for which you have to thank your President and him alone — ) and that the little that is done, is, so to say, smuggled in — and then syllogize thusly: — K.H. when writing to us is not an adept.

A non-adept — is fallible.

Therefore, K.H. may very easily commit mistakes; —


Mistakes of punctuation — that will often change entirely the whole sense of a sentence; idiomatic mistakes — very likely to occur especially when writing as hurriedly as I do; mistakes arising from occasional confusion of terms that I had to learn from you — since it is you who are the author of "rounds" — "rings" — "earthly rings" — etc. etc. Now with all this, I beg leave to say, that after having carefully read over and over our "Famous Contradictions" myself; after giving them to be read to M.; and then to a high adept whose powers are not in the Chohan's chancery sequestered by Him to prevent him from squandering them upon the unworthy objects of his personal predilections; after doing all this I was told by the latter the following: "It is all perfectly correct. Knowing what you mean, no more than any other person acquainted with the doctrine, can I find in these detached fragments anything that would really conflict with each other. But, since many sentences are incomplete, and the subjects scattered about without any order, I do not wonder that your "lay chelas" should find fault with them. Yes; they do require a more explicit and clear exposition."

Such is the decree of an adept — and I abide by it; I will try to complete the information for your sake.

In one and only case — marked on your pages and my answers (I2A) and (12B), the last — is the "plaintiff" entitled to a hearing, but not to a farthing even — for damages; since, as in law, no one — either plaintiff or defendant — has a right to plead ignorance of that law, so in Occult Sciences, the lay chelas ought to be forced to give the benefit of the doubt to their gurus in cases, in which, owing to their great ignorance of that science they are likely to misinterpret the meaning — instead of accusing them point blank of contradiction! Now I beg to state, that, with regard to the two sentences — marked respectively 12A and 12B — there is a plain contradiction but for those who are not acquainted with that tenet; you were not, and therefore I plead "guilty" of an omission, but "not guilty" of a contradiction. And even as regards the former, that omission is so small that, like the girl accused of infanticide, who when brought before the Judge said in her excuse that the baby was so very very little that it was not worth his while calling it a "baby" at all — I could plead the same for my omission, had I not before my eyes your terrible definition of my "exercising ingenuity." Well, read the explanation given in my "Notes and Answers" and judge.

By the bye, my good Brother, I have not hitherto suspected in you such a capacity for defending and excusing the inexcusable as exhibited by you in my defence, of the now famous "exercise of ingenuity." If the article (reply to C. C. Massey) has been written in the spirit you attribute to me in your letter; and if I, or any one of us has "an inclination to tolerate subtler and more tricksy ways of pursuing an end" than generally admitted as honourable by the truth-loving, straight-forward European (is Mr. Hume included in this category?) — indeed you have no right to excuse such a mode of dealing, even in me; nor to view it "merely in the nature of spots in the sun," since a spot is a spot whether found in the bright luminary or upon a brass candlestick. But you are mistaken, my dear friend. There was no subtle, no tricky mode of dealing, to get her out of the difficulty created by her ambiguous style and ignorance of English, not her ignorance of the subject — which is not the same thing and alters entirely the question. Nor was I ignorant of the fact that M. had written to you previously upon the subject since it was in one of his letters (the last but one before I took the business off his hands) in which he touched upon the subject of "races" for the first and spoke of reincarnations. If M. told you to beware trusting Isis too implicitly, it was because he was teaching you truth and fact — and that at the time the passage was written we had not yet decided upon teaching the public indiscriminately. He gave you several such instances — if you will but re-read his letter — adding that were such and such sentences written in such a way they would explain facts now merely hinted upon, far better.

Of course "to C.C.M." the passage must seem wrong and contradictory for it is "misleading" as M. said. Many are the subjects treated upon in Isis that even H.P.B. was not allowed to become thoroughly acquainted with; yet they are not contradictory if — "misleading." To make her say — as she was made by me to say — that the passage criticized was "incomplete, chaotic, vague . . . clumsy as many more passages in that work" was a sufficiently "frank admission" I should think, to satisfy the most crotchetty critic. To admit "that the passage was wrong," on the other hand, would have mounted to a timeless falsehood, for I maintain that it is not wrong; since if it conceals the whole truth, it does not distort it in the fragments of that truth as given in Isis. The point in C.C.M.'s complaining criticism was not that the whole truth had not been given, but that the truth and facts of 1877 were represented as errors and contradicted in 1882 and it was that point — damaging for the whole Society, its "lay" and inner chelas, and for our doctrine — that had to be shown under its true colours; namely that of an entire misconception due to the fact that the "septenary" doctrine had not yet been divulged to the world at the time when Isis was written. And thus it was shown. I am sorry you do not find her answer written under my direct inspiration "very satisfactory," for it proves to me only that up to this you have not yet grasped very firmly the difference between the sixth and seventh and the fifth, or the immortal and the astral or personal "Monads — Egos." The suspicion is corroborated by what H — X gives in his criticism of my explanation at the end of his "letter" in the September number; your letter before me completing the evidence thereupon. No doubt the "real Ego inheres in the higher principles which are reincarnated" periodically every one, two, or three or more thousands of years. But the immortal Ego the "Individual Monad," is not the personal monad which is the 5th; and the passage in Isis did not answer Eastern reincarnationists — who maintain in that same Isis — had you but read the whole of it — that the individuality or the immortal "Ego" has to re-appear in every cycle — but the Western especially the French reincarnationists, who teach that it is the personal, or astral monad, the "moi fluidique" the manas, or the intellectual mind, the 5th principle in short, that is reincarnated each time. Thus, if you read once more C.C.M.'s quoted passage from Isis against the "Reviewer of the Perfect Way," you will perhaps find that H.P.B. and myself were perfectly right in maintaining that in the above passage only the "astral monad" was meant. And, there is a far more "unsatisfactory shock" to my mind, upon finding that you refuse to recognise The "astral monad" is the "personal Ego," and therefore, it never reincarnates, as the French Spirites, will have it, but under "exceptional circumstances;" in which case, reincarnating, it does not become a shell but, if successful in its second reincarnation will become one, and then gradually lose its personality, after being so to say emptied of its best and highest spiritual attributes by the immortal monad or the "Spiritual Ego," during the last and supreme struggle. The "jar of feeling" then ought to be on my side, as indeed it only "seemed to be another illustration of the difference between eastern and western methods," but was not — not in this case at any rate. I can readily understand, my dear friend, that in the chilly condition you find yourself (mentally) in, you are prepared to bask even in the rays of a funereal pile upon which a living sutti is being performed; but why, why call it a — Sun, and excuse its spot — the corpse?

The letter addressed to me, which your delicacy would not permit you to read, was for your perusal and sent for that purpose. I wanted you to read it.

Your suggestion concerning G.K.'s next trial in art — is clever, but not sufficiently, as to conceal the white threads of the Jesuitically black insinuation. G.K. was however caught at it: Nous verrons, nous verrons! says the French song.

G. Khool says — presenting his most humble salaams — that you have "incorrectly described the course of events as regards the first portrait." What he says is this: (1) the day she came" she did not ask you "to give her a piece of" etc. (page 300) but after you had begun speaking to her of my portrait, which she doubted much whether you could have. It is but after half-an-hour's talk over it in the front drawing room — you two forming the two upper points of the triangle, near your office door, and your lady the lower one (he was there he says) that she told you she would try. It was then that she asked you for "a piece of thick white paper" and that you gave her a piece of a thin letter paper, which had been touched by some very anti-magnetic person. However he did, he says, the best he could. On the day following, as Mrs. S. had looked at it just 27 minutes before he did it, he accomplished his task. It was not "an hour or two before" as you say for he had told the "O.L." to let her see it just before breakfast. After breakfast, she asked you for a piece of Bristol board, and you gave her two pieces, both marked and not one as you say. The first time she brought it out it was a failure, he says, "with the eyebrow like a leech," and it was finished only during the evening, while you were at the Club, at a dinner at which the old Upasika would not go. And it was he again G.K. "great artist" who had to make away with the "leech," and to correct cap and features, and who made it "look like Master" (he will insist giving me that name though he is no longer my chela in reality), since M. after spoiling it would not go to the trouble of correcting it but preferred going to sleep instead. And finally, he tells me, my making fun of the portrait notwithstanding, the likeness is good but would have been better had M. sahib not interfered with it, and he, G.K. allowed to have his own "artistic" ways. Such is his tale, and he therefore, is not satisfied with your description and so he said to Upasika who told you something quite different. Now to my notes.

(1) (1)

Nor do they fret me — particularly. But as they furnish our mutual friend with a good handle against us, which he is likely to use any day in that nasty way, so pre-eminently his own, I rather explain them once more — with your kind permission.


Of course, of course; it is our usual way of getting out of difficulties. Having been "invented" ourselves, we repay the inventors by inventing imaginary races. There are a good many things more we are charged with having invented. Well, well, well; there's one thing, at any rate, we can never be accused of inventing; and that is Mr. Hume himself. To invent his like transcends the highest Siddhi powers we know of.

And now good friend, before we proceed any further, pray read the appended No. [A]. It is time you should know us as we are. Only, to prove to you, if not to him, that we have not invented those races, I will give out for your benefit that which has never been given out before. I will explain to you a whole chapter out of Rhys Davids work on Buddhism, or rather on Lamaism, which, in his natural ignorance he regards as a corruption of Buddhism! Since those gentlemen — the Orientalists — presume to give to the world their soi-disant translations and commentaries on our sacred books, let the theosophists show the great ignorance of those "world" pundits, by giving the public the right doctrines and explanations of what they would regard as an absurd, fancy theory.


And because I admit the superficial or apparent inconsistency — and even that in the case only of one who is so thoroughly unacquainted with our doctrines as you are — is that a reason why they should be regarded as conflicting in reality? Suppose I had written in a previous letter — "the moon has no atmosphere" and then went on talking of other things; and told you in another letter "for the moon has an atmosphere of its own "etc.: no doubt but that I should stand under the charge of saying to-day black and to-morrow white. But where could a Kabalist see in the two sentences a contradiction? I can assure you that he would not. For, a Kabalist who knows that the moon has no atmosphere answering in any respect to that of our earth, but one of its own, entirely different from that your men of science would call one, knows also that like the Westerns we Easterns, and Occultists especially, have our own ways of expressing thought as plain to us in their implied meaning as yours are to yourselves. Take for instance into your head to teach your Bearer astronomy. Tell him to-day — "see, how gloriously the sun is setting — see how rapidly it moves, how it rises and sets etc.;" and to-morrow try to impress him with the fact that the sun is comparatively motionless and that it is but our earth that loses and then again catches sight of the sun in her diurnal motion; and ten to one, if your pupil has any brains in his head, he will accuse you of flatly contradicting yourself. Would this be a proof of your ignorance of the heliocentric system? And could you be accused with anything like justice of "writing one thing to-day and denying it to-morrow," though your sense of fairness should prompt you to admit that you "can easily understand" the accusation.

Writing my letters, then, as I do, a few lines now and a few words two hours later; having to catch up the thread of the same subject, perhaps with a dozen or more interruptions between the beginning and the end, I cannot promise you anything like western accuracy. Ergo — the only "victim of accident" in this case is myself. The innocent cross examination to which I am subjected by you — and that I do not object to — and the positively pre-determined purpose of catching me tripping whenever he can, on Mr. Hume's part, — a proceeding regarded as highly legal and honest in western law, but to which we, Asiatic savages, object most emphatically — has given my colleagues and Brothers a high opinion of my proclivities to martyrdom. In their sight I have become a kind of Indo-Tibetan Simon Stylites. Caught by the lower hook of the Simla interrogation mark and impaled on it, I see myself doomed to equilibrize upon the apex of the semicircle for fear of slipping down at every uncertain motion either backward or forward. — Such is the present position of your humble friend. Ever since I undertook the extraordinary task of teaching two grown up pupils with brains in which the methods of western science had crystallized for years; one of whom is willing enough to make room for the new iconoclastic teaching, but who, nevertheless, requires a careful handling while the other will receive nothing but on condition of grouping the subjects as he wants them to group, not in their natural order — I have been regarded by all our Chohans as a lunatic. I am seriously asked whether my early association with Western "Pelings" had not made of me a half-Peling and turned me also into a "dzing-dzing" visionary. All this had been expected. I do not complain; I narrate a fact, and humbly demand credit for the same, only hoping it will not be mistaken again for a subtle and tricky way of getting out of a new difficulty.


Every just disembodied four-fold entity — whether it died a natural or violent death, from suicide or accident, mentally sane or insane, young or old, good, bad, or indifferent — loses at the instant of death all recollection, it is mentally — annihilated; it sleeps it's akasic sleep in the Kama-loka. This state lasts from a few hours, (rarely less) days, weeks, months — sometimes to several years. All this according to the entity, to its mental status at the moment of death, to the character of its death, etc. That remembrance will return slowly and gradually toward the end of the gestation (to the entity or Ego), still more slowly but far more imperfectly and incompletely to the shell, and fully to the Ego at the moment of its entrance into the Devachan. And now the latter being a state determined and brought by its past life, the Ego does not fall headlong but sinks into it gradually and by easy stages. With the first dawn of that state appears that life (or rather is once more lived over by the Ego) from its first day of consciousness to its last. From the most important down to the most trifling event, all are marshalled before the spiritual eye of the Ego; only, unlike the events of real life, those of them remain only that are chosen by the new liver (pardon the word) clinging to certain scenes and actors, these remain permanently — while all the others fade away to disappear for ever, or to return to their creator — the shell. Now try to understand this highly important, because so highly just and retributive law, in its effects. Out of the resurrected Past nothing remains but what the Ego has felt spiritually — that was evolved by and through, and lived over by his spiritual faculties — they be love or hatred. All that I am now trying to describe is in truth — indescribable. As no two men, not even two photographs of the same person, nor yet two leaves resemble line for line each other, so no two states in Deva-Chan are like. Unless he be an adept, who can realize such a state in his periodical Deva-chan — how can one be expected to form a correct picture of the same?




Therefore, there is no contradiction in saying, that the ego once reborn in the Devachan, "retains for a certain time proportionate to its earth life a complete recollection of his (Spiritual) life on earth." Here again the omission of the word "Spiritual" alone, produced a misunderstanding!




All those that do not slip down into the 8th sphere — go to the Devachan. Where's the point made or the contradiction?




The Devachan State, I repeat, can be as little described or explained, by giving a however minute and graphic description of the state of one ego taken at random, as all the human lives collectively could be described by the "Life of Napoleon" or that of any other man. There are millions of various states of happiness and misery, emotional states having their source in the physical as well as the spiritual faculties and senses, and only the latter surviving. An honest labourer will feel differently from an honest millionaire. Miss Nightingale's state will differ considerably from that of a young bride who dies before the consummation of what she regards as happiness. The two former love their families; the philanthropist — humanity; the girl centres the whole world in her future husband; the melomanic knows of no higher state of bliss and happiness than music — the most divine and spiritual of arts. The devachan merges from its highest into its lowest degree — by insensible gradations; while from the last step of devachan, the Ego will often find itself in Avitcha's faintest state, which, towards the end of the "spiritual selection" of events may become a bona fide "Avitcha." Remember, every feeling is relative. There is neither good nor evil, happiness nor misery per se. The transcendent, evanescent bliss of an adulterer, who by his act murders the happiness of a husband, is no less spiritually born for its criminal nature. If a remorse of conscience (the latter proceeding always from the Sixth Principle) has only once been felt during the period of bliss and really spiritual love, born in the sixth and fifth, however polluted by the desires of the fourth, or Kamarupa, — then this remorse must survive and will accompany incessantly the scenes of pure love. I need not enter into details, since a physiological expert, as I take you to be, need hardly have his imagination and intuitions prompted by a psychological observer of my sort. Search in the depths of your conscience and memory, and try to see what are the scenes that are likely to take their firm hold upon you; when once more in their presence you find yourself living them over again; and that, ensnared, you will have forgotten all the rest — this letter among other things, since in the course of events it will come far later on in the panorama of your resurrected life. I have no right to look into your past life.

Whenever I may have caught glimpses of it, I have invariably turned my eyes away, for I have to deal with the present A. P. Sinnett — (also and by far more "a new invention" than the ex A.P.S.) — not with the ancient man.

Yes; Love and Hatred are the only immortal feelings; but the gradations of tones along the seven by seven scales of the whole key-board of life, are numberless. And, since it is those two feelings — (or, to be correct, shall I risk being misunderstood again and say those two poles of man's "Soul" which is a unity?) — that


— for, having eliminated from your past life the Ratigans and Reeds who with you have never transcended beyond the boundaries of the lower portion of your fifth principle with its vehicle — the kama — what is it but the "partial remembrance" of a life? The lines marked with your reddest pencil are also disposed of. For how can you dispute the fact that music and harmony are for a Wagner, a Paganini, the King of Bavaria and so many other true artists and melomans, an object of the profoundest spiritual love and veneration? With your permission I will not change one word in clause 9.




Pity you have not followed your quotations with personal commentaries. I fail to comprehend in what respect you object to the word "dream"? Of course both bliss and misery are but a dream; and as they are purely spiritual they are "intensified."





(12A & 12B)

Had I but written, — when answering Mr. Hume's objections, who after statistical calculations made with the evident intention of crushing our teaching, maintained that after all spiritualists were right and the majority of seance rooms spooks were "Spirits" — "In no case then, with the exception of suicides and shells" — and those accidents who die full of some engrossing earthly passion — is there any possibility for any other, etc., etc." I would have been perfectly right and pucka as a "professor"? To think that, eager as you are to accept doctrines that contradict in some most important points physical science from first to last — you should have consented at Mr. Hume's suggestion to split hairs over a simple omission! My dear friend, permit me to remark that simple common sense ought to have whispered you that one who says one day: "in no case then etc.:" and a few days later denies having ever pronounced the word never — is not only no adept but must be either suffering from softening of the brain or some other "accident." "On margin I said rarely but I have not pronounced the word never — refers to the margin of the proof of your letter N. II; that margin — or rather to avoid a fresh accusation — the piece of paper I had written upon some remarks referring to the subject and glued to the margin of your proof — you have cut out as well as the four lines of poetry. Why you have done so is known better to yourself. But the word never refers to that margin.

To one sin though I do, plead "guilty." That sin, was a very acute feeling of irritation against Mr. Hume upon receiving his triumphant statistical letter; the answer to which you found incorporated in yours when I wrote for you the materials for your answer to Mr. Khandallawala's letter that you had sent back to H.P.B. Had I not been irritated I would not have become guilty of the omission, perhaps. This now is my Karma. I had no business to feel irritated, or lose my temper; but that letter of his was I believe the seventh or the eighth of that kind received by me during that fortnight. And I must say, that our friend has the most knavish way of using his intellect in raising the most unexpected sophisms to tickle people's nerves with, that I have ever known! Under the pretext of strict logical reasoning, he will perform feigned thrusts at his antagonist — whenever unable to find a vulnerable spot, and then, caught and exposed, he will answer in the most innocent way: "Why, it is for your own good, and you ought to feel grateful! If I were an adept I would always know what my correspondent really meant," etc. etc. Being an "adept" in some small matters I do know what he really means; and that his meaning amounts to this: were we to divulge to him the whole of our philosophy leaving no inconsistency unexplained, it would still do no good, whatever. For, as in the observation embodied in the Hudibrasian couplet:

"These fleas have other fleas to bite 'em,

And these — their fleas ad infinitum . . . ."

— so with his objections and arguments. Explain him one, and he will find a flaw in the explanation; satisfy him by showing that the latter was after all correct, and he will fly at the opponent for speaking too slow or too rapidly. It is an IMPOSSIBLE task — and I give it up. Let it last until the whole breaks under its own weight. He says "I can kiss no Pope's toe," forgetting that no one has ever asked him to do so; "I can love, but I cannot worship" he tells me. Gush — he can love no one, and nobody but A. O. Hume, and never has. And that really, one could almost exclaim "Oh Hume, — gush is thy name!" — is shown in the following that I transcribe from one of his letters: "If for no other reason, I should love M. for his entire devotion to you — and you I have always loved (!). Even when most cross with you — as one always is most sensitive with those one cares most about — even when I was fully persuaded you were a myth, for even then my heart yearned to you as it often does to an avowedly fictitious character." A sentimental Becky Sharp writing to an imaginary lover, could hardly express her feelings better!

I will see to your scientific questions next week. I am not at home at present, but quite near to Darjeeling, in the Lamasery, the object of poor H.P.B.'s longings. I thought of leaving by the end of September but find it rather difficult on account of Nobin's boy. Most probably, also I will have to interview in my own skin the Old Lady if M. brings her here. And — he has to bring her — or lose her for ever — at least, as far as the physical triad is concerned. And now good-bye, I ask you again — do not frighten my little man; he may prove useful to you some day — only do not forget — he is but an appearance.


K. H.

Letter 25 Table of Contents


1. K.H.'s replies to the "Famous Contradictions"; the numbers correspond to those which appear in the text of Mr. Sinnett's Queries. See ante Letter 24a. — ED. (return to text)

Letter No. 25

Devachan Notes Latest Additions. Received Feb. 2nd, 1883.


(1) Why should it be supposed that devachan is a monotonous condition only because some one moment of earthly sensation is indefinitely perpetuated — stretched, so to say, throughout aeons? It is not, it cannot be so. This would be contrary to all analogies and antagonistic to the law of effects under which results are proportioned to antecedent energies. To make it clear you must keep in mind that there are two fields of causal manifestation, to wit: the objective and subjective. So the grosser energies, those which operate in the heavier or denser conditions of matter manifest objectively in physical life, their outcome being the new personality of each birth included within the grand cycle of the evoluting individuality. The moral and spiritual activities find their sphere of effects in "devachan." For example: the vices, physical attractions, etc.

— say, of a philosopher may result in the birth of a new philosopher, a king, a merchant, a rich Epicurean, or any other personality whose make-up was inevitable from the preponderating proclivities of the being in the next preceding birth. Bacon, for inst: whom a poet called —

"The greatest, wisest, meanest of mankind" — might reappear in his next incarnation as a greedy money-getter, with extraordinary intellectual capacities. But the moral and spiritual qualities of the previous Bacon would also have to find a field in which their energies could expand themselves. Devachan is such field. Hence — all the great plans of moral reform of intellectual and spiritual research into abstract principles of nature, all the divine aspirations, would, in devachan come to fruition, and the abstract entity previously known as the great Chancellor would occupy itself in this inner world of its own preparation, living, if not quite what one would call a conscious existence, at least a dream of such realistic vividness that none of the life-realities could ever match it. And this "dream" lasts — until Karma is satisfied in that direction, the ripple of force reaches the edge of its cyclic basin, and the being moves into the next area of causes. This, it may find in the same world as before, or another, according to his or her stage of progression through the necessary rings and rounds of human development.

Then — how can you think that "but one moment of earthly sensation only is selected for perpetuation"? Very true, that "moment" lasts from the first to last; but then it lasts but as the key-note of the whole harmony, a definite tone of appreciable pitch, around which cluster and develop in progressive variations of melody and as endless variations on a theme, all the aspirations, desires, hopes, dreams, which, in connection with that particular "moment" had ever crossed the dreamer's brain during his life-time, without having ever found their realization on earth, and which he now finds fully realized in all their vividness in devachan, without ever suspecting that all that blissful reality is but the progeny begotten by his own fancy, the effects of the mental causes produced by himself. That particular one moment which will be most intense and uppermost in the thoughts of his dying brain at the time of dissolution will of course regulate all the other "moments"; still the latter — minor and less vivid though they be — will be there also, having their appointed plan in this phantasmagoric marshalling of past dreams, and must give variety to the whole. No man on earth, but has some decided predilection if not a domineering passion; no person, however humble and poor — and often because of all that — but indulges in dreams and desires unsatisfied though these be. Is this monotony? Would you call such variations ad infinitum on the one theme, and that theme modelling itself, on, and taking colour and its definite shape from, that group of desires which was the most intense during life "a blank destitution of all knowledge in the devachanic mind" — seeming "in a measure ignoble"? Then verily, either you have failed, as you say, to take in my meaning, or it is I who am to blame. I must have sorely failed to convey the right meaning, and have to confess my inability to describe the — indescribable. The latter is a difficult task, good friend. Unless the intuitive perceptions of a trained chela come to the rescue, no amount of description — however graphic — will help. Indeed, — no adequate words to express the difference between a state of mind on earth, and one outside of its sphere of action; no English terms in existence, equivalent to ours; nothing — but unavoidable (as due to early Western education) preconceptions, hence — lines of thought in a wrong direction in the learner's mind to help us in this inoculation of entirely new thoughts! You are right. Not only "ordinary people" — your readers — but even such idealists and highly intellectual units as Mr. C. C. M. will fail, I am afraid, to seize the true idea, will never fathom it to its very depths. Perhaps, you may some day, realize better than you do now, one of the chief reasons for our unwillingness to impart our Knowledge to European candidates. Only read Mr. Roden Noel's disquisitions and diatribes in Light! Indeed, indeed, you ought to have answered them as advised by me through H.P.B. Your silence is a brief triumph to the pious gentleman, and seems like a desertion of poor Mr. Massey.

"A man in the way to learn something of the mysteries of nature seems in a higher state of existence to begin with on earth than that which nature apparently provides for him as a reward for his best deeds."

Perhaps "apparently" — not so in reality. When the modus operandus of nature is correctly understood. Then that other misconception: "The more merit, the longer period of devachan. But then in Devachan . . . all sense of the lapse of time is lost: a minute is as a thousand years . . . a quoi bon then, etc."

This remark and such ways of looking at things might as well apply to the whole of Eternity, to Nirvana, Pralaya, and what not. Say, at once that the whole system of being, of existence separate and collective, of nature objective and subjective are but idiotic, aimless facts, a gigantic fraud of that nature, which meeting with little sympathy with Western philosophy, has, moreover, the cruel disapprobation of the best "lay-chela." A quoi bon, in such a case, this preaching of our doctrines, all this uphill work and swimming in adversum flumen? Why should the West be so anxious then to learn anything from the East, since it is evidently unable to digest that which can never meet the requirements of the special tastes of its Esthetics. Sorry outlook for us, since even you fail to take in the whole magnitude of our philosophy, or to even embrace at one scope a small corner — the devachan — of those sublime and infinite horizons of "after life." I do not want to discourage you. I would only draw your attention to the formidable difficulties encountered by us in every attempt we make to explain our metaphysics to Western minds, even among the most intelligent. Alas, my friend, you seem as unable to assimilate our mode of thinking, as to digest our food, or enjoy our melodies!

No; there are no clocks, no timepieces in devachan, my esteemed chela, though the whole Cosmos is a gigantic chronometer in one sense. Nor do we, mortals, — ici bas meme — take much, if any, cognizance of time during periods of happiness and bliss, and find them ever too short; a fact that does not in the least prevent us from enjoying that happiness all the same — when it does come. Have you ever given a thought to this little possibility that, perhaps, it is because their cup of bliss is full to its brim, that the "devachanee" loses "all sense of the lapse of time" and that it is something that those who land in Avitchi do not, though as much as the devachanee, the Avitchee has no cognizance of time — i.e., of our earthly calculations of periods of time? I may also remind you in this connection that time is something created entirely by ourselves; that while one short second of intense agony may appear, even on earth, as an eternity to one man, to another, more fortunate, hours, days, and sometimes whole years may seem to flit like one brief moment; and that finally, of all the sentient and conscious beings on earth, man is the only animal that takes any cognizance of time, although it makes him neither happier nor wiser. How then, can I explain to you that which you cannot feel, since you seem unable to comprehend it? Finite similes are unfit to express the abstract and the infinite; nor can the objective ever mirror the subjective. To realize the bliss in devachan, or the woes in Avitchi, you have to assimilate them — as we do. Western critical idealism (as shown in Mr. Roden Noel's attacks) has still to learn the difference that exists between the real being of super-sensible objects, and the shadowy subjectivity of the ideas it has reduced them to. Time is not a predicate conception and can, therefore, neither be proved nor analysed, according to the methods of superficial philosophy. And, unless we learn to counteract the negative results of that method of drawing our conclusions agreeably to the teachings of the so-called "system of pure reason," and to distinguish between the matter and the form of our knowledge of sensible objects, we can never arrive at correct, definite conclusions. The case in hand, as defended by me against your (very natural) misconception is a good proof of the shallowness and even fallacy of that "system of pure (materialistic) reason." Space and time may be — as Kant has it — not the product but the regulators of the sensations, but only so far, as our sensations on earth are concerned, not those in devachan. There we do not find the a priori ideas of those "space and time" controlling the perceptions of the denizen of devachan in respect to the objects of his sense; but, on the contrary, we discover that it is the devachanee himself who absolutely creates both and annihilates them at the same time. Thus, the "after states" so called, can never be correctly judged by practical reason since the latter can have active being only in the sphere of final causes or In a plainer language, I will now tell you the following, and, it will be no fault of mine if you still fail to comprehend its full meaning. As physical existence has its cumulative intensity from infancy to prime, and its diminishing energy thenceforward to dotage and death, so the dream-life of devachan is lived correspondentially. Hence you are right in saying that the "Soul" can never awake to its mistake and find itself "cheated by nature" — the more so, as strictly speaking, the whole of the human life and its boasted realities, are no better than such "cheating." But you are wrong in pandering to the prejudices and preconceptions of the Western readers (no Asiatic will ever agree with you upon this point) when you add that "there is a sense of unreality about the whole affair which is painful to the mind," since you are the first one to feel that, it is no doubt due much more to "an imperfect grasp of the nature of the existence" in devachan — than to any defect in our system. Hence — my orders to a chela to reproduce in an Appendix to your article extracts from this letter and explanations calculated to disabuse the reader, and to obliterate, as far as possible, the painful impression this confession of yours is sure to produce on him. The whole paragraph is dangerous. I do not feel myself justified in crossing it out, since it is evidently the expression of your real feelings, kindly, though — pardon me for saying so — a little clumsily white-washed with an apparent defence of this (to your mind) weak point of the system. But it is not so, believe me. Nature cheats no more the devachanee than she does the living, physical man. Nature provides for him far more real bliss and happiness there, than she does here, where all the conditions of evil and chance are against him, and his inherent helplessness — that of a straw violently blown hither and thither by every remorseless wind — has made unalloyed happiness on this earth an utter impossibility for the human being, whatever his chances and condition may be. Rather call this life an ugly, horrid nightmare, and you will be right. To call the devachan existence a "dream" in any other sense but that of a conventional term, well suited to our languages all full of misnomers — is to renounce for ever the knowledge of the esoteric doctrine — the sole custodian of truth. Let me then try once more to explain to you a few of the many states in Devachan and — Avitchi.

As in actual earth-life, so there is for the Ego in devachan — the first flutter of psychic life, the attainment of prime, the gradual exhaustion of force passing into semi-unconsciousness, gradual oblivion and lethargy, total oblivion and — not death but birth: birth into another personality, and the resumption of action which daily begets new congeries of causes, that must be worked out in another term of Devachan, and still another physical rebirth as a new personality. What the lives in devachan and upon Earth shall be respectively in each instance is determined by Karma. And this weary round of birth upon birth must be ever and ever run through, until the being reaches the end of the seventh round, or — attains in the interim the wisdom of an Arhat, then that of a Buddha and thus gets relieved for a round or two, — having learned how to burst through the vicious circles — and to pass periodically into the Paranirvana.

But suppose it is not a question of a Bacon, a Goethe, a Shelley, a Howard, but of some hum-drum person, some colourless, flaxless personality, who never impinged upon the world enough to make himself felt: what then? Simply that his devachanic state is as colourless and feeble as was his personality. How could it be otherwise since cause and effect are equal. But suppose a case of a monster of wickedness, sensuality, ambition, avarice, pride, deceit, etc.: but who nevertheless has a germ or germs of something better, flashes of a more divine nature — where is he to go? The said spark smouldering under a heap of dirt will counteract, nevertheless, the attraction of the eighth sphere, whither fall but absolute nonentities; "failures of nature" to be remodelled entirely, whose divine monad separated itself from the five principles during their life-time, (whether in the next preceding or several preceding births, since such cases are also on our records), and who have lived as soulless human beings. (1) These persons whose sixth principle has left them (while the seventh having lost its vahan (or vehicle) can exist independently no longer) their fifth or animal Soul of course goes down "the bottomless pit." This will perhaps make Eliphas Levi's hints still more clear to you, if you read over what he says, and my remarks on the margin thereon (see Theosophist, October, 1881, Article "Death") and reflect upon the words used: such as drones, etc. Well, the first named entity then, cannot, with all its wickedness go to the eighth sphere — since his wickedness is of a too spiritual, refined nature. He is a monster — not a mere Soulless brute. He must not be simply annihilated but PUNISHED; for, annihilation, i.e. total oblivion, and the fact of being snuffed out of conscious existence, constitutes per se no punishment, and as Voltaire expressed it: "le neant ne laisse pas d'avoir du bon." Here is no taper-glimmer to be puffed out by a zephyr, but a strong, positive, maleficent energy, fed and developed by circumstances, some of which may have really been beyond his control. There must be for such a nature a state corresponding to Devachan, and this is found in Avitchi — the perfect antithesis of devachan — vulgarized by the Western nations into Hell and Heaven, and which you have entirely lost sight of in your "Fragment." Remember: "To be immortal in good one must identify himself with Good (or God); to be immortal in evil — with evil (or Satan)." Misconceptions of the true value of such terms as "Spirit," "Soul," "individuality," "personality," and "immortality" (especially) — provoke wordy wars between a great number of idealistic debaters, besides Messrs. C.C.M. and Roden Noel. And, to complete your Fragment without risking to fall again under the mangling tooth of the latter honourable gentleman's criticism — I found it necessary to add to devachan — Avitchi as its complement and applying to it the same laws as to the former. This is done, with your permission, in the Appendix.

Having explained the situation sufficiently I may now answer your query No. 1 directly. Yes, certainly there is "a change of occupation," a continual change in Devachan, just as much — and far more — as there is in the life of any man or woman who happens to follow his or her whole life one sole occupation whatever it may be; with that difference, that to the Devachanee his special occupation is always pleasant and fills his life with rapture. Change then there must be, for that dream-life is but the fruition, the harvest-time of those psychic seed-germs dropped from the tree of physical existence in our moments of dreams and hopes, fancy-glimpses of bliss and happiness stifled in an ungrateful social soil, blooming in the rosy dawn of Devachan, and ripening under its ever fructifying sky. No failures there, no disappointments! If man had but one single moment of ideal happiness and experience during his life — as you think — even then, if Devachan exists, — it could not be as you erroneously suppose, the indefinite prolongation of that "single moment," but the infinite developments, the various incidents and events, based upon, and outflowing from, that one "single moment" or moments, as the case may be; all in short that would suggest itself to the "dreamer's" fancy. That one note, as I said, struck from the lyre of life, would form but the Key-note of the being's subjective state, and work out into numberless harmonic tones and semi-tones of psychic phantasmagoria. There — all unrealized hopes, aspirations, dreams, become fully realized, and the dreams of the objective become the realities of the subjective existence. And there behind the curtain of Maya its vapours and deceptive appearances are perceived by the adept, who has learnt the great secret how to penetrate thus deeply into the Arcana of being.

Doubtless my question whether you had experienced monotony during what you consider the happiest moment of your life has entirely misled you. This letter thus, is the just penance for my laziness to amplify the explanation.

Query (2) What cycle is meant?

The "minor cycle" meant is, of course, the completion of the seventh Round, as decided upon and explained. Besides that at the end of each of the seven rounds come a less "full" remembrance; only of the devachanic experiences taking place between the numerous births at the end of each personal life. But the complete recollection of all the lives — (earthly and devachanic) omniscience — in short — comes but at the great end of the full seven Rounds (unless one had become in the interim a Bodhisatwa, an Arhat) — the "threshold" of Nirvana meaning an indefinite period. Naturally a man, a Seventh-rounder (who completes his earthly migrations at the beginning of the last race