Re: Distractions vs. ignorance (avidya)
Jan 28, 1999 08:06 PM
by Daniel H Caldwell
> I well
> remember the first time I read the S.D., and I was swimming in Odin this,
> Daiviprakriti that, Osiris and Prometheus and Buddha and Vasubandhu and
> Shankaracharya and Kiu-Te coming out my ears. Without the background reading
> I've done on the topics HPB has mentioned, I wouldn't even be able to
> understand why her writings are important, or really even what they're saying.
> So yes, I think your option A is a very good one. Read HPB, then read the
> material she is discussing, and then go back and read her again.
> Have I written anything different in the last two months? Honestly?
Rich, I fully agree with your statement above. When I first began reading and
studying HPB's writings, I ran across literally hundreds of names and terms that
meant little if anything to me. I guess I could have ignored all of HPB's
statements containing such terms and confined myself to the material that was
fairly understandable at the time. But I don't see how you can read and
understand much of what HPB writes without doing background reading in order to
fill in the gaps. Not the gaps in HPB's comments. But the gaps in your own
knowledge about many things HPB writes about.
For example, years ago when I first read the Mahatma Letters, I read various
references to the Red Caps and Yellow Caps and to Tsong-khapa, etc. I did not
know anything about what these terms meant. Who was Tsong-khapa? Yellow Caps?
What was this all about? etc etc.
Or who was Stainton Moses or CC Massey? I understood some of what the Mahatma KH
was writing about but because I had no background on these two individuals, some
of what the Mahatma said meant little or nothing to me. But because I WANTED to
understand more fully KH's comments, I took the time and effort to dig up some
biographical info, etc. on these two individuals. As a result, I gained a fuller
and more appreciative understanding of KH's words. Some might call this a
"distraction" but I wanted to understand KH's comments and I think my digging into
background material has helped me to understand more fully KH's letters.
Who is Suby Ram mentioned in the Mahatma Letters? I was able to uncover that this
person was a Radhasoami Master. As a result I have come to a much greater
understanding of a dozen related Theosophical issues and teachings. Distraction
some might say. I would have to disagree. I have gained much insight as a result
of what Master M. wrote about Suby Ram and my digging into the background material
about this person.
Digging into background material aided me in discovering 30 Mahatma Letters, most
of which have never been published yet. Digging into background material aided me
in discovering a complete transcription of THE INNER GROUP TEACHINGS OF HPB which
was subsequently published by Point Loma Publications.
I could give hundreds & hundreds of other examples.
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