Boris, ULT and 1900 Letter
Sep 12, 2006 02:11 PM
I don’t think the ULT an oficial position as to the authenticity or otherwise of the 1900 Letter, and all of its individual associates are naturally free to think what they want about this and other issues.
Yet in the book “The Theosophical Movement - 1875-1950”, which was written by leading ULT associates in Los Angeles, one can see a cautious defense of the authenticy of the 1900 letter, decades before its total text was revealed in 1987.
The book says:
“Despite all the claptrap circulated by Mrs. Besant in the name of the ‘Masters’, this communication seems to have the ring of authenticity. (...)”
Then the book makes a long quotation from the Letter and comments:
“Even with the deletions made by Mr. Jinarajadasa of parts of the letter which he says ‘refer to the occult life of Dr. Besant’, its implication of the erroneous course of the T.S. is quite plain. Whatever the source of this letter, if Mrs. Besant had been able to take to heart the counsel it offered, she might have saved herself and many followers from some of the more ridiculous extremes which she reached in later years, and avoided, also, the comtempt which she earned for the term Theosophy among those who would look no further into the Theosophical Movement than newspaper reports of the doings of the Theosophical Society.” (1)
After the publication of the full text of the 1900 Letter, evidences of its authenticity got to be rather massive.
Mr. Jean-Paul Guignette, probably an ULT associate, wrote in a letter published in 1988 in “Theosophical History”:
“Long before I received, last September, the ‘Eclectic Theosophist’ with the complete text, I had discussed with several ULT members about said letter, and in most cases their own opinion accorded with mine, that there seemed to be good reasons to accept it as a genuine message of the Master. And in fact, the now published missing passages would not contribute to change their minds.” (2)
The 1900 Letter was first published by Emmett Small, the editor of “The Eclectic Theosophist” and a distinguished Theosophist. As Leslie Price wrote, “Emmett Small was for many years a colleague of Boris de Zirkoff, who we believe accepted the genuiness of the Letter.” (3)
The main fact, anyway, is that the various lessons and hints contained in the Letter are yet to be seriously considered and acted upon.
Now or in the future, such a letter will probably be most useful not only to the Adyar TS, but to the movement as a whole. It is not a coincidence that its message has much in common with the Prayag Letter and with the Letter Ten of the “Mahatma Letters” (non-chronological editions).
But – what would it mean to “act accordingly” with regard to that message? We’d better think about that.
(1) “The Theosophical Movement - 1875-1950”, The Cunningham Press, Los Angeles, copyright 1951, 351 pp., see pp. 296-297.
(2) “Correspondence - Note on the 1900 Letter”, by Jean-Paul Guignette, in “Theosophical History” magazine, London, vol. 2, No. 5., January 1988, pp. 184-186.
(3) “Commentary - The 1900 Letter”, by L. Price, in “Theosophical History” magazine, Vol. 2, No. 4, p. 115.
[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
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