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

A question for Bruce : Re: The Algeo HPB Letters and John Cooper

Apr 20, 2006 12:35 PM
by danielhcaldwell


When you write:

The hagiographer is interested in lifting the 
source of the letters, in this case
HPB, to the status of Saint and discount all 
letters that are not in
harmony with this particular world view.

Could you please clarify something.  In the statement
above are you indirectly referring to Mr. Wheeler 
and/or Mr. Aveline? 

Some readers of FOHAT and also of Theos-Talk may
be tempted to jump to such conclusions. 

I bring this up because one of my correspondents is
already referring to the proposed new Volume I
of HPB letters (which has been announced in the pages
of FOHAT) as "the hagiographer's edition."

Just wondering and thanking you in advance for
your clarification.


--- In, "robert_b_macd" 
<robert.b.macdonald@...> wrote:
> --- In, gregory@ wrote:
> >
> >
> > The suggestion that John included �fake� letters is
> ridiculous. John, as an
> > historian, considered it important to include controversial, and
> possibly
> > dubious, letters so that these could be considered and any 
> that the
> > correspondence had been �censored� avoided. Contentious
> letters were, in John�s
> > work, clearly identified and the arguments for and against their
> origin
> > considered. This is the approach of a scholar, rather than that 
of a
> �true
> > believer� or a hagiographer.
> >
> > All of John�s material is now accessible at the National 
> of Australia.
> >
> > Dr Gregory Tillett
> I thank Gregory for the point of view of the historian.  I also
> understand his
> loyalty to his friend John Cooper.  I had the opportunity to meet 
> Cooper
> in Edmonton and found him to be a generous and gracious individual.
> I just wanted to make a third differentiation in possible 
approaches to
> the
> letters of HPB.  Gregory gives us the approach of the historian or
> scholar.   He
> alludes to the approach of the "true believer" or hagiographer.  I 
> like to
> add the approach of the theosophist.  How would the three 
> differ.
> 1. The scholar is interested in trying to understand HPB.  He will 
> at all
> the letters, contentious or otherwise.  He will look at each 
letter and
> argue the
> validity of each on its own merits.  This is the objective 
approach of
> the scholar.
> - the weakness of the approach is that scholars will take different
> positions and
> argue for the inclusion of different letters or parts of letters.  
> is a nice
> diversion but will never amount to anything definitive.  Some 
> simply
> cannot be concluded definitively, the state of mind of individual 
> beings
> being one of them.  Scholars are concerned with coming to answers 
> most or
> all of them are not wise enough to arrive at.    However, our 
world is a
> political
> one and for the time being this type of investigation has some 
> 2.  The hagiographer is interested in lifting the source of the 
> in this case
> HPB, to the status of Saint and discount all letters that are not 
> harmony with
> this particular world view.
> -this is a political move designed to give HPB and those that 
follow her
> more
> power by attracting more followers to the TS.  This is obviously 
one of
> the evil
> ploys that theosophy was re-introduced to fight against.  The
> hagiographer is
> not a theosophist.
> 3. Within the theosophical group there can be no friction as 
everyone is
> responsible for his own set of beliefs.  Different people may 
> different
> things, but the group as a whole is beholden to the beliefs of 
> They do
> believe in the principles of logical discourse,  brotherhood, and 
> importanceof the various fields of study (religion, philosophy,
> science).
> Any effort to limit this will be met with force by the group.
> Theosophists can believe what they want.   That is why members of 
> group get upset when an attack on a member seems to get personal.  
> perceive this to be an effort to undermine the freedoms guaranteed 
> theosophy.  We are not responsible for the beliefs of others. If 
> attack
> another member and try to make him adopt some belief,  then you 
are a
> danger to the group.  Personal attacks against anyone are not 
> That is the rule.
> If someone tries to introduce a set of statements or letters whose
> logical
> deduction is that a member of the group (ie, HPB) is a liar, then 
it is
> incumbent upon theosophist to defend against those allegations that
> cannot be proven.   That is the only way that the Movement can 
> its right for individual members to believe what they choose.  We 
do not
> have a creed to protect, only each other.  If we tolerate personal
> attacks
> against one another, then there is nothing to hold the group 
> and
> it can be easily usurped.   Every members arguments must be 
allowed to
> stand on their own merit unsullied by personal accusations.  Our 
> is
> Truth and Brotherhood. The scholar is beholden to the former but 
not the
> latter.   The scholar does not understand this and sees the 
attempt to
> demand the truth as "censoring".  They, for the most part, are 
unable to
> make this important distinction.  The theosophist has surpassed the
> scholar in that he is interested in the Great Truths and is 
willing to
> sacrifice
> his curiousity about the little truths concerning people's lives.  
> is not
> to say that we will not acknowledge proof but if theosophists allow
> unproven
> allegations against fellow members to stand, then there can be no 
> and
> without trust theosophy ceases to exist.  This is what most 
scholars do
> not
> understand.
> Sincerely,
> Bruce

[Back to Top]

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