The Letters of H. P. Blavatsky to A. P. Sinnett
Theosophical University Press Online Edition

Letter No. 16

{Hume's letter criticizing the Masters for withholding their knowledge was printed in the September Theosophist, together with the Chelas' "Protest."}

August 26th, 1882.


I send you a letter just received from Mr. Hume. Read it if you please and judge. Now, I positively and emphatically decline to receive such letters. He may or may not remain in the Society — it's the Brothers' business. He may or may not do it and me under the pretext of philanthropy all the injury he can think of, but he will not do it through me, nor will he take me as his mouthpiece to repeat to K. H. messages which are the most impudent ones in the world. If they have not, I have enough of him and his generous benefactions he forces upon us, if I have to pay such a price as that for it. Why the dickens does he not write all this to K. H. himself? or, have they again quarrelled and the correspondence is stopped? I expected as much and knew it would come to this. He sends me an article for publication; it has and must be absolutely published he says. Now I would have thrown the article into the fire not for what it contains of me, or against Isis — which he calls the most inaccurate work full and teeming with practical errors (much he knows of it!) but what it says of the Brothers, when he calls them "selfish Asiatics" blames and criticises them, warns the public against them etc. I certainly would have thrown it into the fire but K. H. sent word with Morya that he wanted it absolutely published and I have of course but to shut up. But he will receive a nice protest from Subba Row and seven or more chelas at the end of it, and he will make himself hated by all the Hindus who believe in the Brothers that's all. I must say, that if his desire is to obtain knowledge from K. H. he takes funny ways to get it.

In his letter as you will see he gives me two more messages. Tell D. K. not to make a goose of himself with sham phenomena! I think he made a goose of himself rather. Djual K. had nothing to do with the face dubbed on the margin of his proof. I did it and by no occult means either, but simply with the finger and some blue pencil before a roomful of visitors who interrupted my proof reading, and then in the evening when Deb received a letter from D. K. I tried for fun to imitate D. K.'s handwriting and failed. It was my proof not his; and it was sent to him (I forgetting entirely that dubbed face was there) because the printers upset or spilled the type that was loosely tied up in the form and there was no time to strike off another proof. I gave my proof then to Deb and he, I suppose, did not notice that the caricature was there, and Hume takes it immediately for a "sham occult phenomenon" and Damodar will write to Fern to decline receiving his letters to M. henceforth. He will not run the risk of being called a forger, and impostor and what not. Damodar a deceiver!! I may as well suspect Olcott or yourself of forgery or deceit as him. I won't have him insulted and that's all. I had always said that notwithstanding all his gush and benefactions, he Mr. Hume would become the evil genius of the Society and so he is now. He does that which was never done before; he washes what he imagines to be — and succeeds in making other people imagine — the dirty linen of the sacred Brotherhood publicly in the town bazaars, and criticises in print what he cannot, is unable with his egotistical nature to understand. Why don't you quarrel with K. H? Why is it that he the mildest of mortals likes you so much and comes to nearly feel sick at the mention of Hume's name? I do not protest against the cruel, humiliating treatment of myself for I have sacrificed my individuality long ago. But I must say, that ever since he began to write for the alleged good of the Society and assumed the role of its benefactor, father and patron, I have received more insults, more kicks from him than from any body I know of. He made of me a consummate liar, a chronic humbug in the Hints (which he hung and burnt in hell-fire); and now he forces me to publish against myself, against my book with which hundreds and thousands of people, as intellectual as he is himself, are in raptures and well satisfied with and would never have noticed my bad English and vague statements except on the whole as uninitiates — and so will prevent its sale for the last three or four months the only gagne pain of the Society, that which makes it live and pull on without debts. His calling me a liar and a chronic humbug brought its fruit in the shape of a pamphlet from a Rev. Theophilus in which he calls it "an official document confirmed by and published under the auspices of the T. Society." But I would ask you why should I, to satisfy the doubts and displeasure of the few like C. C. M. and St: Moses, etc. — why should I be sacrificed, be offered in a holocaust to the Lord God of Israel who is Mr. Hume himself in his opinion, I suppose. Our Society lived and thrived well without him whether it was little or much thought of, whether it made, or made no mistakes, and until he came in I was good enough for the masses, except for half a dozen of "choice intellects" like his and yours. And I would rather have preferred to die in my mediocrity than too much celebrity as he makes it now. The higher a position the greater the fall. I only laboured to establish the Society firmly so that after my death — which fortunately is not very far off — it would thrive and a better one than I should come and take my place. Why then should he come in like an African Simoon, blasting and destroying all on his passage, impeding my work, showing my mediocrity in a blaze of light, criticising all and everything, finding fault with everybody and forcing the whole India to point a finger of scorn at me — call me a liar, and that's him, who is never himself spoken of (see Mrs. and Mr. Watson of Baroda) but as the biggest liar in creation whether rightly or wrongly I don't know. Is there no salvation for the Society outside of him, the great Hume, the Mount Everest of intellect, as he believes himself? Do you think he does well in disgusting the Europeans with the Brothers — (to screen himself alone, in future events if any) — and raising the hatred of the Hindus against him? The Europeans would have neither offered themselves nor would they be accepted as chelas without his pointing them the submarine rocks. The Brothers have enough of Europeans by this time, I guess. You alone have never insulted never quarelled with them, disgusted as you may often feel at the state of things. For even I, a half Asiatic and with none of your niceties and English pruderie and fidgetiness, even I felt disheartened more than once at the crumbling of my ideals. But that was long ago; years since; and since then I learned to know them better, and if they lost in my fiction, they won the more in my real reverential respect. I do not judge them any more on appearances as you do. I know there are many things in their reality which does not agree with our European sense or notions of right — as Hume says in his articles, but then, my dear Mr. Sinnett they have a hundred times more of that which you will never get or have in Europe, nor have they any of our horrible vices and small faults. Their ways are repugnant he says! Well why does he go after them then? They do not want him; nor are they inclined to bow before him for his Hints and Sundra Iyer's Essay, of which he makes so much, and which the Sundra Iyer will perhaps refuse to recognise as his own in its new dress. The Brothers do not care a snap of their finger what he thinks of them, and I suspect his letter sent for publication is a great relief to them, in one sense. It is a cruel, cold, rebellious and haughty letter, at best, and the chelas are preparing a protest with Subba Row at the head. I would have never NEVER published it, but M. and K. H. want me to do so and I have but to obey. This letter is a magnificent answer to the ever recurring question "why do not the Brothers favour the Europeans." They favour more a man who calls them as good as asses, who, he says contradict themselves, are unintelligent or what is the same "intellectually lower" than the European as he says in his article. You are a "baby" for liking their portraits. Mr. Hume would do better? No doubt he would with time given him and materials, and if he knows drawing, especially, he would certainly do it better than Dj. Kh. who has no idea of European drawing, who could hardly make a conception with his Chinese notions of perspective of a face en face in his mind. But let him do it instantaneously as we do. Let him do a fakir's head, and have it spoken of as a unique by the best painters and art critics, without knowing the first rule of drawing as I did. He can also forge. I have no doubt he can. But had he the slightest conception how their "forging" is done he would not have made a fool of himself when speaking of his big miscroscope. His miscroscope will often show him several layers of various stuffs — black lead, and powder and ink, etc. for I have often seen M. sit with a book of most elaborate Chinese characters that he wanted to copy, and a blank book before him and he would put a pinch of black lead dust before him and then rub it in slightly on the page; and then over it precipitate ink; and then, if the image of the characters was all right and correct in his mind the characters copied would be all right, and if he happened to be interrupted then there would be a blunder, and the work wo uld be spoilt. I did not see the letter with Fern's name forged on it, therefore I cannot say. But if he thinks of detecting forgery because his microscope shows him several layers of material then — I pity his intellectual perceptions. And, no doubt when K. H. writes naturally, then Mr. Hume can write better than he does. So can you. But let him try to run a race not with K. H. but with a simple chela when a writing or letter is really phenomenally produced and then he will be nowhere. Nor will he be shown anything if he treats the Brothers as if they were native clerks. No; they are no GENTLEMEN but they are ADEPTS. I do not now wonder that he (Hume) would never know a Christian, since if Jesus ever lived there's 99 to 100 to bet that he was an unwashed Jew and no "gentleman" in his manners. Nevertheless he is a God for 300 millions among whom there are intellects as good as Hume's. I knew he was too haughty to bear with our Brothers. He offering himself as a chela and you innocently believing in his conversion! Fiddlesticks. A Jupiter offering himself as a goat-herd to the God Hermes, to teach the latter manners! Verily — if it came easy to him to prove me an inaccurate fool, a liar, he will find it more difficult in K. H.'s case. Why a chela would hardly be liable to contradict himself "to say one day black and on the other white" on such rudimentary matters as you are taught, as I find from your writings. If K. H. said that the T.S. was the hope of mankind, and then that but two Brothers cared for it, I know what he meant. The T.S. is not going to die with us, and we all of us are but the diggers of its foundations. Where's the contradiction? He laughs at their desire to make him swallow the idea that they are all "angels and Buddhas"!!! much they care for his opinion. And if they are but weak, boasting fools why the devil does he accept K.H. for his Guru. Why does he not throw him overboard and be done with it. I will be the first to feel the greatest relief. If he has his pride, self-dignity and his ideals, I have them too; and I consider his letter to me worse than a slap on my face. I will not receive, nor will I read any more of his letters. I wrote to him all I write to you and K. H. forbid me to send it to him. He may revile and insult the Brothers, Society and me publicly and privately, he can do no worse than he did already. Of course Mr. Hume is a British ex-official and a gentleman and the Brothers no gentlemen, and I but a poor Russian adventuress a chronic liar in the eyes of Anglo-India, thanks to him. He "loves the Brothers and especially K. H." He bathes in the milk of his kindness the whole Brotherhood and the "poor, dear old lady" he loves all and everything, and those he loves so well he treats them like the God of Israel who loved his son so well that he sent him to be crucified. He is like the Count Ugolino "qui a devore ses propres enfants pour leur conserver un pere!" He is a Pecksniff your Hume and now, behold! he has become an Adwaitee; a believer in no God. He was an Adwaitee for the last twenty years and what becomes of Mrs. Gordon's, Mrs. Sinnett's your's, mine, Davison, his wife and daughter's statements to the effect that hundreds of times he maintained last year his P.G. Did he not quarrel with M. in letters and with me in the museum for his Creator and Governor, and moral ruler and guide of the Universe? Of course we are now all fools, we did not understand him, he does not contradict himself. And why the devil does he write to me tell this and that to K. H., why does he not write himself? And what the deuce does he mean by his l Etre est Etre of E. Levi, and his seeming answers to questions I know nothing about! I verily suspect he took my name but as a screen, a sham and that he was writing to K. H. in his head — and if so, what has happened? Have they quarrelled? And he — HE (!!!) calls the Brothers and K. H. SELFISH! Oh, Jesus son of the nun and uncle of Moses! He calling K. H. the grandest, noblest, purest of men — selfish! a truer and better than whom never existed outside the walls of their low asrum; one who young as he is may have become Chohan and perfect Boddhisatwa long ago, were it not for his really divine pity for the world. Oh the sinner and blasphemer! He is not satisfied with their system, he "wanted many times to break with them." Oh the irreparable blow to the Fraternity — if he does. A poor dry weed rolling down the Cheops Pyramid would be as likely to hurt the Pyramid as he the Brotherhood by breaking with them. Well look out for yourself. I have done with him. If he injures the Society we will go — to China or Ceylon instead of going December to Madras — that's all.

Yours sincerely,
H. P. B.

Letter 17

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