Re: Olcott's Postscript & the Basil Crump Article.
Mar 14, 2006 09:06 AM
Alaya, the leadership of Edmonton Theosophical Society has for many
years been concerned with preserving the history of the Theosophical
Movement. At our web site www.theosophycanada.com you can get a sense
of our reprinting program. We have reprinted "Transactions of the
Scottish Lodge", "The Irish Theosophist", "The Theosophical Forum",
Endersby's "Theosophical Notes", just to name a few. Ernest and
Rogelle Pelletier were the force behind this reprinting program that
saw rare material, photocopied reprints, placed in libraries around
the world. Rogelle and Ernest also have an extensive archival file
system. One of the places that they have photocopied much material
from is "The HPB Library" established by Alice Cleather here in Canada
many years ago. The current caretaker of that library is Joan
Sutcliffe and I suspect that she would be a valuable source for some
of the information that you are looking for, as indeed would be our
own library. Joan is a gracious woman and the library does carry
books and pamphlets written by Cleather.
It is this background in theosophical history that has allowed Ernest
Pelletier to do the research necessary to put a book like "The Judge
Case" together. For students of TS history, the book is highly
recomended as it contains a vast collection of rare material reprinted
in the Appendices in Part 2. It really is a book that all Lodge
Libraries and serious students of history should possess.
I hope this gives you some idea. The Basil Crump article was simply
taken out of the pages of "The Judge Case".
--- In email@example.com, "Alaya" <lalaya7@...> wrote:
> robert, how did you have acess to this article by basil crump?!!!
> there are some articles of his and of Mrs. Alice Cleather i long to
> read but since they are from ol theosophical magazines... i can't find
> how did you do?!
> please , informe me!
> --- In firstname.lastname@example.org, "robert_b_macd"
> <robert.b.macdonald@> wrote:
> > --- In email@example.com, "krsanna" <timestar@> wrote:
> > >
> > > Bruce & All -- "The Compiler" may be of help on this reference. I
> > > first read the letter in "The Theosophical Movement," with an
> > > explanation of the context in which the letter was written. As I
> > > recall, the lodge to which the letter was directed had refused to
> > > accept the first object. Lodges were asked to accept at least one
> > > object and the Prayag lodge had declined to accept the first
> > > object. The Prayag lodge assumed a die-hard Brahman position that
> > > embraced the caste system.
> > >
> > > Members of the Prayag Lodge had complained that many other lodges
> > > had received letters from the Mahatmas, but they still had received
> > > nothing. If my memory is correct, this is the situation at the
> > > Prayag lodge when the letter was written.
> > >
> > I think the Prayag Lodge's biggest concern was that the Masters were
> > dealing with Westeners, specifically Sinnet and Hume, who ate beef and
> > used alcohol, while the Prayag group was comprised of orthodox
> > Brahmans who observed all the proper rituals. The Prayag Lodge felt
> > that they were clean and these Westerners were dirty (this is unspoken
> > but I think the implication is that they keep their auras clean
> > through the practice of all their rituals whereas the Westerners do
> > nothing, hence why are the Westerners deserving). It is not generally
> > realized today, but for Brahmans, and indeed Indians in general, the
> > Americas were Patala at this time. They were in virtue of being on
> > the other side of the world from Indian unclean, Patala having the
> > connotation of below the feet. It was a huge deal for Chakravarti to
> > come to North America, the Brahmans could easily have ostracized him.
> > It was probaably this demonstration of courage, of going beyond
> > orthodoxy that had Judge musing for a short while that Chakravarti
> > might make a good president of the Indian Section.
> > > It must be noted that many Mahatma letters were precipitated,
> > > including the one to Olcott on the Shannon, that affirmed that
> > > Blavatsky was their agent and that no other communication had been
> > > given to anyone in Europe or America since 1885, except through HPB.
> > >
> > > The first line of the Prayag letters indicates that Blavatsky was
> > > writing on behalf of "The Brothers." No fraud can be construed from
> > > that introduction.
> > >
> > > "The Brothers desire me to inform one and all of you natives..."
> > >
> > > The Prayag lodge's complaint appears to have been that the TS was
> > > Buddhist propoganda. Olcott was very active in the Buddhist world
> > > and his courage in the face of opposition was never extolled by
> > > anyone. HPB praised Olcott's hard work and dedication, but his
> > > courage was not mentioned as a notable character trait.
> > >
> > Therefore, because it was Buddhist propoganda, Blavatsky must have
> > forged the contents of the letter, it could not be genuine.
> > > Krsanna
> > >
> > For John and others interested, this would be a good place to include
> > Basil Crumps article from the "Irish Theosophist."
> > ADEPTS AND MEDIUMS.
> > In The Theosophist for April appears a "postscript" by Colonel Olcott,
> > repudiating the letter sent by one of the Masters through H.P.B. to
> > certain Brahmans, which was published by Mr. Judge in the April Path
> > and declared by him to be genuine. Colonel Olcott asserts that the
> > communication contains "palpable proof of fraudulency" in that he
> > thinks it to be "an ill-tempered attack" on Brahman orthodoxy, and
> > that, moreover, it "grossly violates that basic principle of
> > neutrality and eclecticism on which the Theosophical Society has built
> > itself from the beginning." There are many, however, who differ
> > absolutely from the Colonel in their opinion of this letter, and
> > consider it to be one of the finest of the series. It is reprinted in
> > a recent pamphlet issued to many members of the T.S., who will be able
> > to judge for themselves. It is a candid but just criticism, not of
> > the spirit of the Brahmanic philosophy, but of the hard forms, castes
> > and creeds which have grown up around it, and which it was H.P.B.'s
> > mission to break up and sweep away from all religions.
> > Colonel Olcott twice misquotes from the letter a very important word.
> > He says that it asks the Brahman to "repudiate his religious beliefs,
> > cast aside his splendid Scriptures and turn Buddhist" ! Italics are
> > mine. And again he quotes a passage thus: "which of them is ready to
> > become a Buddhist, a Nâstika, as they call us." The word used in the
> > letter is "Budhist," not "Buddhist." Why, does he so misquote it when
> > H. P. B. has so carefully explained the radical difference between the
> > two words? Owing to the impression conveyed by the title of Mr.
> > Sinnett's book, Esoteric Buddhism, that Theosophy was only a form of
> > Buddhism, she explained in her Introduction to The Secret Doctrine
> > that Buddhism is the religious system of ethics preached by the Lord
> > Gautama, and named after his title of Buddha, "the Enlightened," while
> > Budha means "wisdom" or knowledge (Vidya), the faculty of cognizing,
> > front the Sanskrit root "budh," to know. She further said that
> > Buddhism is not correctly spelt or pronounced in English, and should
> > be Buddhaïsm. The word Nâstika means, according to The Theosophical
> > Glossary, one who does not worship or recognize the gods and idols.
> > Colonel Olcott advances the theory, which both he and Mrs. Besant have
> > already applied to the case of Mr. Judge, that H.P.B. was a medium not
> > always responsible for what was given through her. He is driven to
> > invent this miserable and insulting excuse in order to avoid accusing
> > her of conscious fraud. This theory is untenable, and to prove it I
> > cannot do better than quote from an article by Jasper Niemand,
> > entitled, "Judge the Act, Not the Person," which appeared in The Path
> > of July, 1889. The writer there says:
> > What difference is there between the instrumentality of H.P.B. and
> > that of any transmitting medium? There is that radical difference
> > which exists between the two extremes called by its poles. H.P.B. is
> > an Adept; the other not. The Adept is such by virtue of the active
> > principle. The medium is such by virtue of the passive principle. . .
> > . H.P.B. is an active, conscious agent, acting through will power,
> > having attained the power of perfect registration and trained
> > concentration, able at all times to give a full account of all she
> > knows, and one fitted to the development of the questioner, one
> > responding to his physical, astral or spiritual sense. She is
> > learned, acute, profound; disease of the body has not impaired her
> > work, its quality, quantity, or her fidelity to it. The great proof
> > is thorough comprehension, to the fullest depth, of all she has taken
> > or received, and the body of H.P.B. is her own instrument; she even
> > holds it back from dissolution. [Capitals mine.‒‒ B. C.]
> > The medium theory being disposed of, a second question arises out of
> > the position taken up by Mrs. Besant, Colonel Olcott and others.
> > Granting that H.P.B. was a Messenger front the Masters, would those
> > Masters Whose name had once been taken in vain ever use the same
> > instrument again?
> > The answer is undoubtedly No. All that has been written by H.P.B., by
> > W. Q. Judge, by Jasper Niemand and others on the rules of occult
> > training, on the qualifications necessary for real chelaship, on the
> > sacred relations between Master and chela, prove that such a thing is
> > utterly impossible. H.P.B. has written that all the so-called
> > "occult" letters must stand together or fall together. Yet it is
> > sought to get rid of what is not approved by inventing theories which
> > throw mud at the Masters and Their Messenger, and which violate the
> > cardinal rules of Occultism. This is a question for those to whom the
> > existence of Mahâtmas is a fact or a matter of personal belief, and
> > that is why the charges against Mr. Judge can never be tried without
> > fixing the dogma upon the T.S. Those who take teaching and advice
> > from one whom they believe to be a Messenger of The Lodge cannot say
> > that some is true and some false. They may test by their intuition
> > and assimilate what they can, but they may not attempt to put the seal
> > of their paltry condemnation upon that which does not see in to them
> > to be good. H.P.B. once wrote in Lucifer that "a member of the E.S.
> > who receives instructions, emanating from the Masters of the Occult
> > Philosophy, and doubts at the same time the genuineness of the source,
> > or the honesty of the humble transmitter of the old esoteric doctrines
> > ‒‒lies to his own soul, and is untrue to his pledge."
> > mine.‒‒B. C.]
> > Hear also this extract from "the words of great Teachers," given by H.
> > P. B. to her pupils as "the golden stairs up which the learner may
> > climb to the Temple of Divine Wisdom":
> > . . . . A loyal sense of duty to the Teacher, a willing obedience to
> > the behest of TRUTH, once we have placed our confidence in, and
> > believe that Teacher to be in possession of it. . . .
> > We have, then, these definite facts before us at last‒‒I
> speak to
> > those only who believe in Mahâtmas and that they communicate through
> > chosen disciples.
> > 1. That both H.P.B. and Mr. Judge are accused of making bogus
> > 2. That it is admitted that genuine messages were delivered by H.P.B.
> > and Mr. Judge after those which are alleged to be false.
> > 3. That the charges cannot be gone into before the T.S. without fixing
> > the dogma of the Mahâtmas upon it.
> > Finally Colonel Olcott asserts that the question of this letter to the
> > Brahmans does not bear upon the issues which [he thinks] he will have
> > to judicially dispose of in London. I say that it is the fundamental
> > and only issue, the complaint in both cases being identical at the
> > root, and the step that the President has now definitely taken shows
> > more clearly than ever that H.P.B. is the real centre of attack, and
> > through her the movement she sacrificed so much to call into being.
> > Once let her image be dimmed, once let her integrity be shaken, and it
> > will be but the beginning of the end. For remember that Esoteric
> > Buddhism was built on some of the "occult" letters, and that The
> > Secret Doctrine will lose its foundation stones if H.P.B. was not true
> > as steel to her trust.
> > So let the indomitable loyalty of William Q. Judge to his Teacher and
> > ours be the keynote to our action, and let us help him to keep
> > unbroken the links which bind us to the Head and Heart of our
> > movement, without whom it would not exist to-day.
> > Basil Crump.
[Back to Top]
Dedicated to the Theosophical Philosophy and its Practical Application