RE: [theosophia] Statements on Blavatsky
Jul 19, 2006 08:41 AM
by W.Dallas TenBroeck
Sent: Monday, July 17, 2006
Re: Statements on Blavatsky
If after living with, and thoroughly reading the collected works of HPB, or
even a thorough reading of just the Secret Doctrine and Isis Unveiled, one
can still say that she was a women of "limited" insight, I would conclude a
massive inability to understand any subject matter, on the part of the
reader. That said, the only other conclusion one can come to is a failure to
read the stated material, at all, coupled with the audacity to comment, on
that, which remains unexperienced.
Allow me to ask”
“In a message dated 7/16/2006 8:55:09 A.M. Eastern Standard Time,
I find Blavatsky a woman of very limited insight. She made some really
foolish assertions about both Christianity and Judaism.
DTB WHERE ? HOW ?
Her solution was that everyone should convert to Hinduism.
DTB I do not see this. In any case “Hinduism” is as diverse in
sects and precepts as is “Christianity” and “Protestantism.”
How many Hindu “sacred texts” are you really familiar with?
How about the increasing scrutiny being now given to the original sources of
buiblical material? Has this some relevance?
And with respect to that ONE TRUTH, she lacked the necessary focus
or awareness of the primary objectives of life.
DTB WHAT IS YOUR BASIS ?
And while she was more enlightened than the Christians she disparaged and
attacked, her own judgments and failure to comprehend the reasons for the
differences in the various religions, inhibited her own spiritual
DTB HOW DO YOU ARRIVE AT THAT CONCLUSION?
I found that she emphasized the SIMILARITIES in all religions: Example
RELIGION & REFORM – THEOSOPHICALLY
TWO great shadowy shapes remain fixed in the attention of the mind of the
day, threatening to become in the twentieth century more formidable and
engrossing than ever. They are religion and reform, and in their sweep they
include every question of pressing human need; for this first arises through
the introspective experience of the race out of its aspirations toward the
unknown and the ever present desire to solve the questions whence and why?
while the second has its birth in the conditions surrounding the bodies of
the questioners of fate who struggle helplessly in the ocean of material
Many men wielding small or weighty pens have wrestled with these questions,
attacking them in ways as various as the minds of those who have taken them
up for consideration, but it still remains for the theosophist to bring
forward his views and obtain a hearing. This he should always do as a matter
of duty, and not from the pride of fame or the self-assertion which would
see itself proclaimed before men. For he knows that, even if he should not
speak or could not get a hearing, the march of that evolution in which he
thoroughly believes will force these views upon humanity, even if that has
to be accomplished by suffering endured by every human unit.
The theosophist can see no possibility of reform in existing abuses, in
politics or social relations, unless the plan of reform is one which grows
out of a true religion, and he does not think that any of the prevailing
religions of the Occident are true or adequate. They do not go to the root
of the evil which causes the pain and sorrow that call for reform or
alleviation. And in his opinion theosophy--the essence or concentrated
virtue of every religion alone has power to offer and effect the cure.
None of the present attempts at reform will meet success so long as they are
devoid of the true doctrine as to man, his nature and destiny, and
respecting the universe, its origin and future course. Every one of these
essays leaves man where it finds him, neglecting the lessons to be drawn
from the cycles in their never-ceasing revolution.
While efforts are made to meliorate his mere physical condition, the real
mover, the man within, is left without a guide, and is therefore certain to
produce from no matter how good a system the same evils which are designed
to be destroyed. At every change he once more proceeds to vitiate the effect
of any new regimen by the very defects in human nature that cannot be
reached by legislation or by dogmatic creeds and impossible hells, because
they are beyond the reach of everything except the power of his own thought.
Nationalism, Socialism, Liberalism, Conservatism, Communism, and Anarchism
are each and all ineffective in the end. The beautiful dream depicted by
Nationalism cannot be made a physical fact, since it has no binding inward
sanction; Communism could not stand, because in time the Communist would
react back into the holder of individual rights and protector of property
which his human nature would demand ought not to be dissipated among others
less worthy. And the continuance of the present system, in which the amasser
of wealth is allowed to retain and dispose of what he has acquired, will, in
the end, result in the very riot and bloodshed which legislation is meant to
prevent and suppress.
Indeed, the great popular right of universal suffrage, instead of bringing
about the true reign of liberty and law, will be the very engine through
which the crash will come, unless with it the Theosophic doctrines are
We have seen the suffrage gradually extended so as to be universal in the
United States, but the people are used by the demagogues and the suffrage is
put to waste. Meanwhile, the struggle between capital and labor grows more
intense, and in time will rage with such fury that the poor and unlearned,
feeling the goad of poverty strike deeper, will cast their votes for
measures respecting property in land or chattels, so revolutionary that
capital will combine to right the supposed invasion by sword and bullet.
This is the end toward which it is all tending, and none of the reforms so
sincerely put forward will avert it for one hour after the causes have been
sufficiently fixed and crystallized. This final formation of the efficient
causes is not yet complete, but is rapidly approaching the point where no
cure will be possible.
The cold acquirements of science give us, it is true, magnificent physical
results, but fail like creeds and reforms by legislative acts in the end.
Using her own methods and instruments, she fails to find the soul and denies
its existence; while the churches assert a soul but cannot explain it, and
at the same time shock human reason by postulating the incineration by
material fire of that which they admit is immortal. As a means of escape
from this dilemma nothing is offered save a vicarious atonement and a
retreat behind a blind acceptance of incongruities and injustice in a God
who is supposed by all to be infinitely merciful and just.
Thus, on the one hand, science has no terrors and no reformatory force for
the wicked and the selfish; on the other, the creeds, losing their hold in
consequence of the inroads of knowledge, grow less and less useful and
respected every year. The people seem to be approaching an era of wild
unbelief. Just such a state of thought prevailed before the French
revolution of 1793.
Theosophy here suggests the reconciliation of science and religion by
showing that there is a common foundation for all religions and that the
soul exists with all the psychic forces proceeding therefrom. As to the
universe, Theosophy teaches a never-ending evolution and involution.
Evolution begins when the Great Breath--Herbert Spencers "Unknowable" which
manifests as universal energy--goes forth, and involution, or the
disappearance of the universe, obtains when the same breath returns to
This coming forth lasts millions upon millions of years, and involution
prevails for an equal length of time.
As soon as the breath goes forth, [BIG BANG ? ] universal mind together with
universal basic matter appears. In the ancient system this mind is called
Mahat, and matter Prakriti. Mahat has the plan of evolution which it
impresses upon Prakriti, causing it to ceaselessly proceed with the
evolution of forms and the perfecting of the units composing the cosmos. The
crown of this perfection is man, and he contains in himself the whole plan
of the universe copied in miniature but universally potential.
This brings us to ourselves, surrounded as we are by an environment that
appears to us to cause pain and sorrow, no matter where we turn. But as the
immutable laws of cause and effect brought about our own evolution, the same
laws become our saviors from the miseries of existence.
The two great laws postulated by Theosophy for the world's reform are those
of Karma and Reincarnation.
Karma is the law of action which decrees that man must suffer and enjoy
solely through his own thoughts and acts. His thoughts, being the smaller
copy of the universal mind, lie at the root of every act and constitute the
force that brings about the particular body he may inhabit.
So Reincarnation in an earthly body is as necessary for him as the ceaseless
reincarnation of the universal mind in evolution after evolution is needful
for it. And as no man is a unit separate from the others in the Cosmos, he
must think and act in such a way that no discord is produced by him in the
great universal stream of evolution. It is the disturbance of this harmony
which alone brings on the miseries of life, whether that be of a single man
or of the whole nation. As he has acted in his last life or lives, so will
he be acted upon in succeeding ones. This is why the rich are often
unworthy, and the worthy so frequently poor and afflicted. All appeals to
force are useless, as they only create new causes sure to react upon us in
future lives as well as in the present. But if all men believed in this just
and comprehensive law of Karma, knowing well that whatever they do will be
punished or rewarded in this or other new lives, the evils of existence
would begin to disappear. The rich would know that they are only trustees
for the wealth they have and are bound to use it for the good of their
fellows, and the poor, satisfied that their lot is the just desert for prior
acts and aided by the more fortunate, would work out old bad Karma and sow
the seeds of only that which is good and harmonious.
National misery, such as that of Whitechapel in London (to be imitated ere
long in New York), is the result of national Karma, which in its turn is
composed of the aggregation of not only the Karma of the individuals
concerned but also of that belonging to the rest of the nation. Ordinary
reforms, whether by law or otherwise, will not compass the end in view.
This is demonstrated by experience. But given that the ruling and richer
classes believe in Karma and Reincarnation, a universal widespread effort
would at once be made by those favorites of fortune toward not only present
alleviation of miserable conditions, but also in the line of educating the
vulgar who now consider themselves oppressed as well by their superiors as
The opposite is now the case, for we cannot call individual sporadic or
sectarian efforts of beneficence a national or universal attempt. Just now
we have the General of the Salvation Army proposing a huge scheme of
colonization which is denounced by a master of science, Prof. Huxley, as
utopian, inefficient, and full of menace for the future. And he, in the
course of his comment, candidly admits the great danger to be feared from
the criminal and dissatisfied classes.
But if the poorer and less discriminating see the richer and the learned
offering physical assistance and intelligent explanations of the apparent
injustice of life which can be found only in Theosophy there would soon
arise a possibility of making effective the fine laws and regulations which
many are ready to add to those already proposed. Without such Theosophic
philosophy and religion, the constantly increasing concessions made to the
clamor of the uneducated democracy's demands will only end in inflating the
actual majority with an undue sense of their real power, and thus
precipitate the convulsion which might he averted by the other course.
This is a general statement of the only panacea, for if once believed in
even from a selfish motive it will compel, by a force that works from within
all men, the endeavor to escape from future unhappiness which is inevitable
if they violate the laws inhering in the universal mind.
By William Q. Judge, F.T.S.
THE TWENTIETH CENTURY
New York, March 12, 1891
POINTS OF AGREEMENT IN ALL RELIGIONS
... Let me read you a few verses from some of the ancient
Scriptures of the world, from the old Indian books held sacred by the
Brahmans of Hindustan.(1)
“What room for doubt and what room for sorrow is there in him who
knows that all spiritual beings are the same in kind and only differ from
each other in degree?
The sun does not shine there, nor the moon and the stars, nor these
lightnings and much less this fire. When He shines, everything shines after
Him; by His light all this is lighted.
Lead me from the unreal to the real!
Lead me from darkness to light!
Lead me from death to immortality!
Seeking for refuge, I go to that God who is the light of His own
thoughts; He who first creates Brahman and delivers the Vedas to him; who is
without parts, without actions, tranquil, without fault, the highest bridge
to immortality, like a fire that has consumed its fuel.” - Mundaka
Such are some of the verses, out of many thousands, which are enshrined in
the ancient Hindu Vedas beloved by those we have called "heathen"; those are
the sentiments of the people we have called idolaters only.
As the representative of the Theosophical movement I am glad to be here, and
to be assigned to speak on what are the points of agreement in all
religions. I am glad because Theosophy is to be found in all religions and
We, as members of the Theosophical Society, endorse to the fullest extent
those remarks of your chairman in opening, when he said, in effect, that a
theology which stayed in one spot without advancing was not a true theology,
but that we had advanced to where theology should include a study of man.
Such a study must embrace his various religions, both dead and living.
And pushing that study into those regions we must conclude that man is
greatly his own reveler, has revealed religion to himself, and therefore
that all religions must include and contain truth; that no one religion is
entitled to a patent or exclusive claim upon truth or revelation, or is the
only one that God has given to man, or the only road along which man can
walk to salvation. If this be not true, then your Religious Parliament is no
Parliament, but only a body of men admiring themselves and their religion.
But the very existence of this Parliament proclaims the truth of what I have
said, and shows the need which the Theosophical Society has for nineteen
years been asserting, of a dutiful, careful, and brotherly inquiry into all
the religions of the world, for the purpose of discovering what the central
truths are upon which each and every religion rests, and what the original
fountain from which they have come.
This careful and tolerant inquiry is what we are here for today; for that
the Theosophical Society stands and has stood: for toleration, for unity,
for the final and irrevocable death of all dogmatism.
But if you say that religion must have been revealed, then surely God did
not wait for several millions of years before giving it to those poor beings
called men. He did not, surely, wait until He found one poor Semitic tribe
to whom He might give it late in the life of the race? Hence He must have
given it in the very beginning, and therefore all present religions must
arise from one fount.
What are the great religions of the world and from whence have they come?
They are Christianity, Brahmanism, Buddhism, Confucianism, Judaism,
Zoroastrianism, and Mohammedanism. The first named is the youngest, with all
its warring sects, with Mormonism as an offshoot and with Roman Catholicism
boldly claiming sole precedence and truth.
Brahmanism is the old and hoary religion of India, a grown-up,
fully-developed system long before either Buddhism or Christianity was born.
It extends back to the night of time, and throws the history of religion
far, far beyond any place where modern investigators were once willing to
place even the beginning of religious thought. Almost the ancient of
ancients, it stands in far-off India, holding its holy Vedas in its hands,
calmly waiting until the newer West shall find time out of the pursuit of
material wealth to examine the treasures it contains.
Buddhism, the religion of Ceylon, of parts of China, of Burmah and Japan and
Tibet, comes after its parent Brahmanism. It is historically older than
Christianity and contains the same ethics as the latter, the same laws and
the same examples, similar saints and identical fables and tales relating to
Lord Buddha, the Saviour of Men. It embraces today, after some twenty-five
hundred years of life, more people than any other religion, for two-thirds
of the human family profess it.
Zoroastrianism also fades into the darkness of the past. It too teaches
ethics such as we know. Much of its ritual and philosophy is not understood,
but the law of brotherly love is not absent from it; it teaches justice and
truth, charity and faith in God, together with immortality. In these it
agrees with all, but it differs from Christianity in not admitting a
vicarious salvation, which it says is not possible.
Christianity of today is modern Judaism, but the Christianity of Jesus is
something different. He taught forgiveness, Moses taught retaliation, and
that is the law today in Christian State and Church. "An eye for an eye, and
a tooth for a tooth" is still the recognized rule, but Jesus taught the
opposite. He fully agreed with Buddha, who, preaching 500 years before the
birth of the Jewish reformer, said we must love one another and forgive our
enemies. So modern Christianity is not the religion of Jesus, but Buddhism
and the religion of Jesus accord with one another in calling for charity,
complete tolerance, perfect non-resistance, absolute self-abnegation.
If we compare Christianity, Buddhism, and Hinduism together on the points of
ritual, dogmas, and doctrines, we find not only agreement but a marvellous
similarity as well, which looks like an imitation on the part of the younger
Christianity. Did the more modern copy the ancient? It would seem probable.
And some of the early Christian Fathers were in the habit of saying, as we
find in their writings, that Christianity brought nothing new into the
world, that it existed from all time.
If we turn to ritual, so fully exemplified in the Roman Catholic Church, we
find the same practices and even similar clothing and altar arrangements in
Buddhism, while many of the prescribed rules for the altar and approaching
or leaving it are mentioned very plainly in far more ancient directions
governing the Brahman when acting as priest. This similarity was so
wonderful in the truthful account given by the Catholic priest Abbé Huc that
the alarmed Church first explained that the devil, knowing that Christianity
was coming, went ahead and invented the whole thing for the Buddhists by a
species of ante facto copying, so as to confound innocent Catholics
therewith; and then they burned poor Abbé Huc's book.
As to stations of the cross, now well known to us, or the rosary,
confession, convents, and the like, all these are in the older religion. The
rosary was long and anciently used in Japan, where they had over one hundred
and seventy-two sorts. And an examination of the mummies of old Egypt
reveals rosaries placed with them in the grave, many varieties being used.
Some of these I have seen. Could we call up the shades of Babylon's priests,
we should doubtless find the same rituals there.
Turning to doctrines, that of salvation by faith is well known in
Christianity. It was the cause of a stormy controversy in the time of St.
James. But very strangely, perhaps, for many Christians, the doctrine is a
very old Brahmanical one. They call it "The Bridge Doctrine," as it is the
great Bridge. But with them it does not mean a faith in some particular
emanation of God, but God is its aim.
God is the means and the way, and God the end of the faith; by complete
faith in God, without an intermediary, God will save you. They also have a
doctrine of salvation by faith in those great sons of God, Krishna, Rama,
and others; complete faith in either of those is for them a way to heaven, a
bridge for the crossing over all sins. Even those who were killed by
Krishna, in the great war detailed in the Ramayana, went straight to heaven
because they looked at him, as the thief on the cross looking at Jesus went
In Buddhism is the same doctrine of faith. The twelve great sects of
Buddhism in Japan have one called the Sect of the Pure Land. This teaches
that Amitabha vowed that any one who calls three times on his name would be
born into his pure Land of Bliss. He held that some men may be strong enough
to prevail against the enemy, but that most men are not, and need some help
from another. This help is found in the power of the vow of Amita Buddha,
who will help all those who call on his name. The doctrine is a modified
form of vicarious atonement, but it does not exclude the salvation by works
which the Christian St. James gives out.
Heaven and Hell are also common to Christianity, Buddhism, and Brahmanism.
The Brahman calls it Swarga; the Buddhist, Devachan; and we, Heaven. Its
opposite is Naraka and Avitchi. But names apart, the descriptions are the
same. Indeed, the hells of the Buddhists are very terrible, long in duration
and awful in effect. The difference is that the heaven and hell of the
Christian are eternal, while the others are not. The others come to an end
when the forces which cause them are exhausted. In teaching of more than one
heaven there is the same likeness, for St. Paul spoke of more than a single
heaven to one of which he was rapt away, and the Buddhist tells of many,
each being a grade above or below some other.
Brahman and Buddhist agree in saying that when heaven or hell is ended for
the soul, it descends again to rebirth. And that was taught by the Jews.
They held that the soul was originally pure, but sinned and had to wander
through rebirth until purified and fit to return to its source.
In priesthood and priestcraft there is a perfect agreement among all
religions, save that the Brahman instead of being ordained a priest is so by
birth. Buddha's priesthood began with those who were his friends and
disciples. After his death they met in council, and subsequently many
councils were held, all being attended by priests. Similar questions arose
among them as with the Christians, and identical splits occurred, so that
now there are Northern and southern Buddhism and the twelve sects of Japan.
During the life of Buddha the old query of admitting women arose and caused
much discussion. The power of the Brahman and Buddhist priests is
considerable, and they demand as great privileges and rights as the
Hence we are bound to conclude that dogmatically and theologically these
religions all agree. Christianity stands out, however, as peculiarly
intolerant - and in using the word "intolerant" I but quote from some
priestly utterances regarding the World's Fair parliament - for it claims to
be the only true religion that God has seen fit to reveal to man.
The great doctrine of a Savior who is the son of God - God himself - is not
an original one with Christianity. It is the same as the extremely ancient
one of the Hindus called the doctrine of the Avatar. An Avatar is one who
comes down to earth to save man. He is God incarnate. Such was Krishna, and
such even the Hindus admit was Buddha, for he is one of the great ten
The similarity between Krishna or Cristna and Christ has been very often
remarked. He came 5,000 years ago to save and benefit man, and his birth was
in India, his teaching being Brahmanical. He, like Jesus, was hated by the
ruler, Kansa, who desired to destroy him in advance, and who destroyed many
sons of families in order to accomplish his end, but failed. Krishna warred
with the powers of darkness in his battles with Ravana, whom he finally
The belief about him was that he was the incarnation of God. This is in
accord with the ancient doctrine that periodically the Great Being assumes
the form of man for the preservation of the just, the establishment of
virtue and order, and the punishment of the wicked. Millions of man and
women read every day of Krishna in the Ramayana of Tulsi Das. His praises
are sung each day and reiterated at their festivals. Certainly it seems
rather narrow and bigoted to assume that but one tribe and one people are
favored by the appearance among them of an incarnation in greater measure of
Jesus taught a secret doctrine to his disciples. He said to them that he
taught the common people in stories of a simple sort, but that the disciples
could learn of the mysteries. And in the early age of Christianity that
secret teaching was known. In Buddhism is the same thing, for Buddha began
with one vehicle or doctrine, proceeded after to two, and then to a third.
He also taught a secret doctrine that doubtless agreed with the Brahmans who
had taught him at his father's court. He gave up the world, and later gave
up eternal peace in Nirvana, so that he might save men. In this the story
agrees with that of Jesus. And Buddha also resisted Mara, or the Devil, in
Jesus teaches that we must be as perfect as the Father, and that the kingdom
of heaven is within each. To be perfect as the Father we must be equal with
him, and hence here we have the ancient doctrine taught of old by the
Brahmins that each man is God and a part of God. This supports the unity of
humanity as a spiritual whole, one of the greatest doctrines of the time
prior to Christianity, and now also believed in Brahmanism.
That the universe is spiritual in essence, that man is a spirit and
immortal, and that man may rise to perfection, are universal doctrines. Even
particular doctrines are common to all the religions. Reincarnation is not
alone in Hinduism or Buddhism. It was believed by the Jews, and not only
believed by Jesus but he also taught it. For he said that John the Baptist
was the reincarnation of Elias "who was for to come." Being a Jew he must
have had the doctrines of the Jews, and this was one of them.
And in Revelations we find the writer says: "Him that overcometh I will make
a pillar in the house of my God, and he shall go out no more." The words "no
more" infer a prior time of going out.
The perfectibility of man destroys the doctrine of original sin, and it was
taught by Jesus, as I said. Reincarnation is a necessity for the evolution
of this perfection, and through it at last are produced those Saviors of the
race of whom Jesus was one. He did not deny similar privileges to others,
but said to his disciples that they could do even greater works than he did.
So we find these great Sages and Saviors in all religions.
There are Moses and Abraham and Solomon, all Sages. And we are bound to
accept the Jewish idea that Moses and the rest were the reincarnations of
former persons. Moses was in their opinion Abel the son of Adam; and their
Messiah was to be a reincarnation of Adam himself who had already come the
second time in the person of David. We take the Messiah and trace him up to
David, but refuse, improperly, to accept the remainder of their theory.
Descending to every-day-life doctrines, we find that of Karma, or that we
must account and receive for every act. This is the great explainer of human
life. It was taught by Jesus and Matthew and St. Paul. The latter explicitly
"Brethren, be not deceived; God is not mocked; for whatsoever a man
soweth, that also shall he reap."
This is Karma of the Brahman and Buddhist, which teaches that each life is
the outcome of a former life or lives, and that every man in his rebirths
will have to account for every thought and receive measure for the measure
given by him before.
In ethics all these religions are the same, and no new ethic is given by
any. Jesus was the same as his predecessor, Buddha, and both taught the law
of love and forgiveness. A consideration of the religions of the past and
today from a Theosophical standpoint will support and confirm ethics.
We therefore cannot introduce a new code, but we strive by looking into all
religions to find a firm basis, not due to fear, favor, or injustice, for
the ethics common to all. This is what Theosophy is for and what it will do.
It is the reformer of religion, the unifier of diverse systems, the restorer
of justice to our theory of the universe. It is our past, our present, and
our future; it is our life, our death, and our immortality.
W Q Judge Path, July, 1894
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