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

Auras of Books

Mar 11, 2006 08:10 AM
by carlosaveline cardoso aveline



Carlos Cardoso Aveline


Latin American writer Jorge Luis Borges (1899-1986) considered books as semi-magic objects. Although he would not use the word aura, he clearly sensed the presence of a subtle energy around them. A student of Kabalah and ancient literature, Borges seems to have known many a deep aspect of the occult philosophy in the last years of his life.

In the 1970s – while I lived in Buenos Aires – two friends and I had a long conversation with him. Those four hours and a half had a lasting impact on my perception of things. By then Borges was already old and blind, and had to write his books by dictation. But he kept buying books for himself and made no secret of the reason. During one of his public talks in Buenos Aires, he said to hundreds of persons, keeping his lifeless eyes typically fixed at some vague, abstract region in the space immediately above his head:

“I have this cult for the book. (...) I keep playing at not being blind; I keep buying books and filling my house with them. Someone gave me the other day the Brockhause Encyclopedia. I felt the presence of the book at home. I felt it like a kind of happiness. There they were, over twenty volumes with their gothic characters which I can’t read, with the maps and illustrations that I can’t see, and yet the book was there. I felt like a friendly radiation coming from that book. The book is one of the possibilities of happiness that we have as men.” (1)

Books do have “auras’, indeed. Unfortunately, not all of them are quite healthy. Life is not easy, and some books have rather sickening auras, as one of the Adept-Teachers who inspire the theosophical movement indicated. Referring to a book edited by Mrs. Annie Besant in the years before she entered the Theosophical Society, the Master said:

“I would rather avoid the unpleasant discussion (...) I have not read the work – nor ever will; but I have its unclean spirit, its brutal aura before me (...) The sooner we leave the subject, the better.” (2)

More than one century later, the book entitled “The Letters of H. P. Blavatsky - Volume I” , edited by Mr. John Algeo and published by the USA T.P.H. in 2003, might be in the same broad category of books with an “unhealthy aura”. Mr. Algeo included in it forged texts full of disgusting lies and libels, cleverly mixed among authentic documents. In those pages H.P. Blavatsky – the woman who worked day and night for the good of mankind and who gave the world such wonderful books as “The Voice of the Silence” and “The Secret Doctrine” – is made to describe herself as a mean person; a Russian spy (“letter” 07); someone who helped torture a cat to death during “occult” experiences (“letter” 76); someone who would like to sell her soul (“letter” 53); and someone whom the devil got into trouble in her youth (“letter” 69) – to name but a few examples of Mr. John Algeo’s “work”.

Out of the 136 “letters” published by Mr. John Algeo, at least 27 documents are certainly false.(3) That makes 20 percent of the total. One out of five letters of the volume is false. Nearly all the 27 forged documents are deeply offensive to H .P. Blavatsky, and more treacherously so since they are presented as if signed by HPB herself. Mr. Algeo, who happens to be the international vice-president of the Theosophical Society, Adyar, has accomplished what no anti-theosophical initiative had done so far: a serious, partially successful attempt to have the worst falsehoods against the Old Lady included in the so-called theosophical literature and, worse, in the very body of books which are ascribed to Helena Petrovna Blavatsky.

A single woman travelling around the world in that rigid and authoritarian society of the 19th century, H.P.B. used her brilliant pen to tirelessly denounce the blind dogmas of the different religions and churches; to propose universal brotherhood as the only real basis for world peace; to criticize the scientific ilusions of her time, and to bring to the world the wisdom of all times, which is always simultaneously new and ancient. But in the short term she disturbed many established routines and could only offer to people a dangerous, difficult, steep and narrow way to inner truth in their own hearts. She had but a few loyal friends to help her face many powerful enemies, who were ready to do anything to stop or hinder her work. Libelling her was one of the first things to do.

More than one century later, it seems we are dealing with a renewed attempt to destroy her at the moral level and thus prevent or make it more difficult for Adyar theosophists to come back to the original teachings and “rediscover” them, now that the neo-theosophy of Mr. Charles Leadbeater loses its strength.


(1) "Conversando com Jorge Luis Borges" (Talking to Jorge Luis Borges), Carlos Cardoso Aveline, a text published in the portuguese magazine “Biosofia”, Lisbon, Summer 2001, pp. 10-13, see p. 12.

(2) The Mahatma Letters to A.P. Sinnett, TUP edition, 1992, Letter LXXXVI, page 405, lower half of the page. In the 1972 Adyar edition of t he Mahatma Letters, see p. 399. In the Philippines TPH, 1993, Chronological edition, it is the Letter 119, p. 408.

(3) This is an initial assessment. Further research may reveal the number is actually greater and – besides the 27 false letters – one of the three versions presented by Algeo of his “Letter 117” is certainly false, too.

O o o O o o O o o O o o O

[ The full text of this article can be seen in “The Aquarian Theosophist” Supplement, March 2006, pp. 11-15. Its title is “Why We Need a Volume With the Authentic Letters of H.P.B.”. You will find it in ]

O o o O o o O o o O o o O

Copa 2006: Já está na hora de saber o que é ‘Freundschaftsspiel’ Clique aqui!

[Back to Top]

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