Theosophical University Press Online Edition
6, LUDWIG STRASSE,
19th Aug., 1885.
MY DEAR MR. SINNETT,
While at Luzern, a week ago, I was strongly impressed to write to you. Why didn't I? I do not know. Perhaps, because for months I had not heard from you, and somehow I could not fit myself in again to letter-writing, which is now a torture to me, for reasons there's little need of explaining.
But hardly arrived to this little quiet town which I have chosen for my new abode I received your letter of Aug. 1st. It touched me more than I can tell. My dear Mr. Sinnett, if there ever was a man in this wide world that I have misunderstood — because perhaps, I have never paid a strict attention but to one side of him — it is you. I never doubted your great devotion to the Mahatma, your real interest for the cause, though with you the latter always rested independent of, more than within, and blended with the T.S. But one could remain for ever faithful to both the movement and its chief motors, and yet shrink from any further contact, with one so dishonoured, so seemingly vile as I now stand. But your personal kindness shows to me that, as usual, I was an ass on this plane of existence, and that what the Mahatmas alone do is well done, and what they know and say is alone just and truthful, as may be always found out in the long run by him who knows to wait. However, I shall not waste time and try your patience by personal disquisitions. I mean to answer your letter, one question after the other.
You are right — I have not seen Karma to that day that you sent it to me, for which — many thanks. I have read it without stopping from the first to the last line. I was afraid it would resemble "Affinities" — in which bits of real palpitating flesh, torn out of as living and real individuals are stuck into mannequins born out of the author's fancy and made to pass off as heroes "copied from nature." I was pleased to find the contrary in your "Karma." In "Affinities" the heroes are either caricatures, or ideals very grossly exaggerated in beauty and importance, as for inst. Colquhoun — (Oscar Wild, I fancy). In Karma the original of Mrs. Lakesby is neither flattered nor her defects exaggerated. You have taken but the real existing features as though from life, passing all the very prominent defects in charitable silence. But, is it only "charitable silence," my dear Mr. Sinnett? I am afraid you are still somewhat under the spell. Well, it is better that one should stick to his friends even with all their defects, than alter opinion of them and abandon or turn one's back upon them, at the first change of scenery. It is not for me to take you to task for constancy, when it is to that feature in you, perhaps, that I owe now the kind letter received, when I know how impossible it is for you to think me wholly blameless in the matter of fraud -- let alone my own natural defects and perhaps — vices.
Yes; I know how hard it was for you to talk of me in London and especially in Paris. The Mahatma said always — "it is as it should be, and he cannot act otherwise" and I have come to see that He was right, and I — wrong as usual. I might speak to you of "Karma" till tomorrow — I like it so much; but I have other things more important for us to speak of; yet I may add one word more.
D. N. has asked Mohini for Karma; but Mohini is now a great character — and has not perhaps time to attend to all he is asked to do. Anyhow I have it now, and thank you for it once more. You will do more good by fancy novels in which truth and such truths are found in apparent fiction, than by works as the Occult World in which every word is now regarded by all except theosophists — as hallucination and the cock and bull stories of confederates.
I am "the subject of constant thought and conversation" in your circles. I wish I were not; for trust and friendship, or distrust and resentment — neither friends nor foes will ever realise the whole truth. So what's the use? Put your hand on your heart, my dear Mr. Sinnett and tell me: has any of my enemies uttered since May last (1884), one thing, or the smallest charge that had not been broached previously by them whether in private talk or newspaper gossip and hints? The only difference between Coulomb — Patterson — Hodgson charges now, and those previous to the Adyar scandal — is this: then the newspapers only hinted, now — they affirm. Then they were restricted (however feebly) by fear of law and a sense of decency; now they have become fearless, and have lost all and every manner of decency. Look at Prof. Sidgwick. He is evidently a gentleman, and an honourable man by nature, fair minded as most Englishmen are. And now tell me, can any outsider (the opinion of the "Fathers of S.P.R." is of course valueless) presume to say that his printed opinion of me is either fair, legal, or honest? If instead of bogus phenomena, I were charged with picking the pockets of my so called victims, or of "bogus" something else, the charging with which when unproved is punishable by law if not wholly demonstrated, would Prof. Sidgwick, you think, have a leg to stand upon in a court of justice? Assuredly not. There is not one phenomenon that can be proven wholly false from beginning to end -- legally, were phenomena something accepted in law. Then what right has he to speak publicly (and have his opinion printed) of my deceptions, fraud, dishonesty and tricks? Shall you maintain that it is fair of him, or honest or even legal, to take advantage of his exceptional position, and the nature of the question involved, to slander me, or, if you prefer — I shall say to charge me thus and dishonour my name — on such wretched evidence as they have through Hodgson? The only right that the S.P.R. has — is to proclaim that all their investigations notwithstanding, they got no evidence to show that the phenomena were all genuine; that there is a strong presumption from the scientific and logical, if not legal stand-point, to suspect that there may have been exaggerations in the reports, suspicious circumstances attached to their production, etc. — never deliberate fraud, deception and so on. Their July Report sets them all — from Myers and Sidgwick down to their last admirer — as donkeys. They show themselves absurdly, most ridiculously unfair in it. Can you blame after this, Solovioff and other Russian theosophists for saying that the chief motor of their wrath against me is — that I am a Russian? I know it is not so; but they, the Russians like Solovioff and the Odessa theosophists, cannot be made to see the cause of such a glaring injustice in any other light. Between the two horns of the dilemma they have no choice. Every fair minded man with brains in his head, must say after reading the Report and comparing what is said on page 452 and page 453 — that those who said and edited it, are either moved by a blind, wild, personal hatred and prejudice; or that they are — DONKEYS.
Please read — and if you have, owing to some unaccountable reason, failed to remark this before — judge now. On page 452 Prof. Sidgwick read the following statement (See para. 5th) about their disclaiming "any intention of imputing wilful deception to Col. Olcott." Following this — there comes the question of envelopes in which Mahatmas writing was found — which might have been previously opened by me or others. Letters from the Masters received at Adyar when I was in Europe "might" have been "in all cases" arranged by Damodar, etc. etc. The disappearance of the Vega packet "can be easily accounted for" by the fact of a venetiated door near Babula's room — a door by the bye, which was hermetically covered and nailed over — (walls and door) with my large carpet, if you remember, etc. etc. But we shall suppose, that the Vega packet was made "to evaporate" fraudulently at Bombay. How then shall Mr. Hodgson, Myers and Co. account for its immediate, instantaneous reappearance at Howrah Calcutta, in the presence of Mrs. and Col. Gordon — (Captain and Mrs. Miller of Karma?) and of our Colonel, if the said Colonel is so obviously immaculate that the Dons of S.P.R. felt bound to offer him public excuses? One thing is obvious: either Colonel Gordon, or Mrs. Gordon or Col. Olcott was one of them at that time my confederate, or they, the gods of S.P.R. are making fools of themselves. Surely no sane man with sound reasoning, acquainted with the circumstances of the "Vega case," or the broken plaster portrait case, or Hubbe Schleiden's letter received in the German railway while I was in London and so many other cases — shall ever dare to write himself down such an ass as to say that while I am a full blown fraud and all my phenomena tricks, that the Colonel is to be charged simply with "credulity and inaccuracy in observation and inference"!!
How is this, as a sample of the value of the scientific researches of the great S.P.R. which sits in Areopagus over the humble theosophists? Ah — gentlemen of the theosophical jury, you of London, and especially of Adyar, how easily you could have knocked up into an omelette your Cambridge dons had you felt yourselves as full of contempt for the learned society of "scientific" investigators as I did from the beginning, instead of looking up to it as to a 19th cent. oracle in psychic matters! Mohini must have lost his head not to have flattened the Psychists on the spot. These two pages alone contain the full condemnation of the S.P.R.; and they are sufficient in themselves to show them before any human jury as prejudiced, unfair judges, unfit for the position they have arrogated to themselves. They are worthy of their "caligraphic expert" Mr. Netherclift or whatever his scientific name. "Barkis is willing," dear scientific friends, to assume that Isis Unveiled, and all the best articles in the Theosophist, as every letter from both Mahatmas — whether in English, French, Telugu, Sanskrit or Hindi, were written by Madame H. P. Blavatsky. She is willing to have it believed that for more than 20 years "without being so much even as a medium," she has bamboozled the most intellectual men of the century, in Russia, America, India, and especially in England. Why genuine phenomena, when the author herself, of the 1000 bogus manifestations on record before the world — is such a living, incarnated phenomenon, as to do all that and much more? Why, it needed only a Mad. Coulomb, and a dozen of unwashed bad-smelling Scotch and American padris, backed by such clever experts and investigators as the Cambridge Dons, to upset the whole machinery. Let Mr. Hodgson find me out one single case revealed to him by Mad. Coulomb, that had not been already planned and hinted at by Indian and American newspapers before, and then I shall bow my diminished head. The poor wretches have not even had the difficulty of inventing something new. The "brooch" incident at Simla has been discussed ad nauseam four years ago, by the Lahore and Bombay papers which became their prophets — unconsciously. She studied and kept the papers for years. She began building her plan of treachery in 1880, from the first day she landed at Bombay with her husband, both shoeless, penniless and starving. She offered to sell my secrets to the Rev. Bowen of the Bombay Guardian, in July 1880, and she sold them actually to the Rev. Patterson in May 1885. But those secrets were "open letters" for years. Why should I complain? Has not Master left it to my choice, to either follow the dictates of Lord Buddha, who enjoins us not to fail to feed even a starving serpent, scorning all fear lest it should turn round and bite the hand that feeds it — or to face Karma which is sure to punish him, who turns away from the sight of sin and misery, or fails to relieve the sinner and the sufferer. I knew her and tried my best not to hate her, and since I always failed in the latter, I tried to make it up by sheltering and feeding the vile snake. I have what I deserve, not for the sins I am charged with but for those which no one — save Master and myself know of. Am I greater, or in any way better, than were St. Germain, and Cagliostro, Giordono Bruno and Paracelsus, and so many many other martyrs whose names appear in the Encyclopedias of the 19th cent. over the meritorious titles of charlatans and impostors? It shall be the Karma of the blind and wicked judges — not mine. In Rome, Darbargiri Nath went to the prison of Cagliostro at the Fort Sant Angelo, and remained in the terrible hole for more than an hour. What he did there, would give Mr. Hodgson the ground work for another scientific Report if he could only investigate the fact.
No; it is not "the Brothers' policy of covering up such evidence . . . of their existence" — but that of the MAHA CHOHAN, and it is Mahatma K. H.'s Karma. If you have never given a thought to what may be His suffering during the human intervals of His Mahatmaship — then you have something yet to learn. "You were warned" — says His Chohan — and He answers — "I was." Still He says He is glad He is yet no Mejnoor, no dried up plant, and that had He to suffer over and over again — He would still do the same for He knows that real good for humanity has come out from all this suffering, and that such books as "Esoteric Buddhism" and "Karma" would not have been written for years to come had He not communicated with you, and had not orders been given to me to do what I have done — stupidly sometimes as I may have carried them out. These are Mahatma K. H.'s own words. No; He is not "right away in Nirvana" — except during the hours of His Mahatmaship. His "devachan" — is far off yet, and people may hear of Him when they expect it the least. I never see or hear of Him, lately — D. N. does. But I know what I say, though I have no orders to tell it to anyone. Remember only that He suffers more, perhaps, than any one of us. And you do not know how right you are in saying that "Well as He loved, He will love me truly — Yea even better than I love Him" — for even you can never love Him as well as He loves you — that particle of Humanity which did its best to help on and benefit Humanity — "the great orphan" He speaks of in one of His letters.
What you say of the respective situations in which are placed the European and Indian Theo. Societies — is quite true. Olcott with all his grand qualities has become — especially of late and under new influences of which I shall not talk — a perfect bag of conceit and silliness. This he does unconsciously. He will be led by no one except the Master he says — and Master refuses to lead him except on very important business having nought to do with his personal or the Society's — Karma. Result — complete flapdoodle. -- Il pose pour le martyr! The — poor man. So blinded is he, that honestly believing he is thereby saving the Society, the CAUSE — as he expresses it — he adopted of late the policy of propitiating the Moloch of public opinion by cautiously admitting that I might have supplemented at times bogus for real phenomena!; that I am suffering at times from mental aberration -- and so on. He is stupid enough in his real and immaculate, though ever unwise honesty, to forget that by admitting even so much, and that which he knows for a certainty to be false -- he thereby confesses himself the first and chief confederate in the alleged bogus phenomena. But it is too long to write about. When I see you — and I hope to goodness I will — I shall tell you many a strange thing. Only remember, that so early as at Elberfeld I told you already what Master had said to me. He is unfit to lead on the Society except nominally because the Society has outgrown him. Let him remain a nominal President — but let us active Presidents — one in India, the other in Europe — the third in America, begin working with that object. You alone ought to become the President in chief of all the European Societies, and for life — who ever else may be the year President of the L.L., or the Paris, or German Th. Societies. Such is the desire of my Master — I know it. For myself — I am resolved to remain sub rosa. I can do far more by remaining in the shadow than by becoming prominent once more in the movement. Let me hide in unknown places and write, write, write, and teach whoever wants to learn. Since Master forced me to live, let me live and die now in relative peace. It is evident He wants me still to work for the T.S. since He does not allow me to make a contract with Katkoff — one that would put yearly 40,000 francs at least in my pocket — to write exclusively for his journal and paper. He would not permit me to sign such a contract last year in Paris when proposed, and does not sanction it now for — He says — my time "shall have to be occupied otherwise." Ah, the cruel, wicked injustice that has been done to me all round! Fancy, the horrid calumny of the "C. C. M." and Patterson whose statement that I sought to defraud Mr. Jacob Sasoon of Rs. 10,000, in that Poona business, has been allowed to go uncontradicted even by Khandalowalla and Ezekiel, who know as well as they are sure of their existences that this special charge, at any rate, is the most abominable, lying calumny; whatever the value of the Rama Singa's phenomenon! Why should my best friends allow me to be so vilified! Why should the Report of the Defence Committee have been suppressed and declared by Olcott in print to have been stopped? Is it not, as Patterson says — a direct confession that the Committee had committed a mistake, found me after all guilty — and thus stopped the defence? Who of the public knows, that after having worked for, and given my life to the progress of the Society for over ten years, I have been forced to leave India — a beggar, literally a beggar depending on the bounty of the Theosophist -- (my own journal, founded and created with my own money!!) for my daily support. I — made out to be a mercenary impostor, a fraud for the sake of money when I never asked or received one pie for my phenomena, when thousands of my own money earned by my Russian articles have been given away, when for five years I have abandoned the price of Isis and the income of the Theosophist to support the Society. And now — I am generously allowed Rs. 200 monthly from that income to save me from starvation in Europe, and reproached for it by Olcott in nearly every letter. Such are facts, my dear Mr. Sinnett. Had not the poorest Society in India — or rather four members of that poorest Society in the N.W.P. — hearing I was cold and penniless, and without any means landed at Naples, sent me each of them two months of their pay (in all Rs. 500) — I could not have come here. None of the Hindu Societies are allowed to know my true position. Truth and facts are concealed from them, lest they should revolt, and show angry feelings for the Colonel. When they begin to clamour too loudly for me, they are told that it is I who refuse to come back!! It is only now that they begin suspecting the truth. Luckily Katkoff sent me 4,000 fs. he owed me, and now I am all right for a time, and I shall now send back the 500 rupees, for they are all four, poor men. Pardon me for saying all this and showing myself so selfish. But it is a direct answer to the vile calumny and it is but right that the theosophists in London should know of it, to enable them to put in a word of defence for me. Solovioff is so indignant that he sent in his resignation to the S.P.R. He wrote a long letter to Myers and now the latter answers him, supplicates and begs of him not to be so severe on them, not to resign, and asks him whether he still maintains that what he saw at Elberfeld was not a hallucination or a fraud; and finally begs of him to come and meet him at Nancy — where he shall prove to him my guilt! Solovioff says that since he is placed by their Report as so many others, between choosing to confess himself either a lunatic or a confederate — he considers it as a slap on the face, a direct insult to him and answers Myers, demanding that his letter should be published and resignation made known. He intends stopping here at Wurzburg with me for a month or so, with his wife and child. There are others too in Paris and Petersburg who intend to withdraw from membership of the S.P.R.
Yes; it is Olcott's cramming of the Cambridge Psychists with his experiences; and his wretched, cheeky appearance with his Buddha on the wheels, at that meeting of the S.P.R. — that brought on us all the misery. Yet he denies it. He actually maintains in India, and to my face, that it is I the only cause of it; that it is my visit to Europe that caused it all! Well — be it so.
No; you are mistaken, if you think, that it is the Masters who want people to believe me guilty. On the contrary; though unable to help me directly for they dare not meddle with my Karma, they are too just not to desire to see me defended by all those who feel honestly that I am innocent. Those who do, only help their Karma, those who do not — put a stain on it. Believe me every such defence is recorded by Them. What They want is, only to show that phenomena without the comprehension of the philosophical and logical conditions that bring them about — are fatal and will ever turn disastrous. But why should I tell you all this, when your "Baron Friedrich" speaks, as though he was repeating words pronounced by the Masters! You know — or ought to know what they really want, and even to comprehend the real nature of the Laws. It is but right and just that I, or any other single individual devoted to the cause, should gladly and willingly sacrifice himself, and allow himself in every case to be sacrificed for the good of the many. But this is in a general way, and has or rather can have no reference to details. It is right that I should be ready to become the goat of atonement for the good and progress of the Theos. Society by withdrawing from the movement, in order not to irritate too much the wild Bull. But what good can I do the cause by permitting myself to be considered a mercenary, vile wretch, by allowing Patterson and Hodgson slanders to go uncontradicted? I do it positive harm. And that is what Olcott and many others do, by half-measures, by pretending to confess that I may be guilty and that it is quite possible, by even withholding from the Theosophist the addresses of sympathy and condemnation of my slanderers sent to me by the Paris and Odessa theosophists and also the German branch. What right have they to suppress those Addresses that were sent to Adyar to be published in our journal by Drummond and Mad. de Morsier, by General Kogen and Zorn, by Hubbe Schleiden and others? While my enemies tear me to pieces the Adyar people play at "hide and seek" — they pretend to be dead — Oh! the poor miserable cowards!! Mind — it is not the Hindus whatever you may have been told. I shall prove to you by dozens of letters that they are the first deceived. I tell you I suffer more from theosophical traitors than from the Coulomb, Patterson, or even the S.P.R. Had all the Societies held together as one man; had there been unity instead of personal ambitions and passions awakened, the whole world, Heaven and Hell themselves could not have prevailed against us. Sacrifice me I am willing, but do not ruin the Society — love it and the Cause. How is it possible that none of you should have pounced upon the glaring, evident unfairness, and I shall say stupid idiotic way, the Psychic investigations have been conducted. When or where have you heard of a defendant sentenced, without being given the chance of putting in a word? What right have they to accept the Coulomb letters as genuine, when I have never been allowed to even look at one? Hodgson had them in Madras. He came daily to dine and eat and drink at Adyar, he had them in his pocket. Has he ever shown to me one of them? It is fair that taking advantage of my dying condition, then of my being unable to quit my room, he should come daily to the C.O.'s, and while going up to see me several times, that he should never try to give me a chance. It is an untruth to say that Hodgson has not "fished in troubled waters" or "collected in secret" his evidence — for he has done both. True, his "unfavourable view of the evidence was communicated to the leading theosophists" — i.e. Mr. and Mrs. Cooper Oakley, and a few others never to me. It is I myself who found it out at a time when no one dreamt yet at Adyar that he had turned against us. And had I not found it out (told by Master who showed me Hodgson at Bombay, and allowed me to read his thoughts while I was motionless and dying on my sick-bed) Hodgson's proceedings would have remained "secret." Ask Mrs. C. O. whether it was not so; and she, laughing at me, calling me a goose and so on when I told them suddenly that Mr. Hodgson had turned against us. Ask her, and even Hodgson himself knows it.
Of course without seeing the letters I cannot help you to any clue to the mystery. I know how it was done; but since I cannot prove it any more than I can show how my handwriting appeared on my own visiting card at Eglinton's seance at "Uncle Sam's" — what's the use in saying it? Was not that my identical handwriting on that card? And yet you know it was not done by me. Alexis Coulomb's handwriting is naturally like mine. We know all how Damodar was once deceived by an order written in my handwriting to go upstairs and seek for me in my bedroom in Bombay when I was at Allahabad. It was a trick of M. Coulomb, who thought it good fun to deceive him, "a chela" — and had prepared a semblance of myself lying on my bed, and having startled Damodar — laughed at him for three days. Unfortunately that bit of a note was not preserved. It was not intended for any phenomenon but simply a "good farce" (une bonne farce) by Coulomb, who indulged in many. And if he could imitate so well my handwriting in a note why could he not copy (he had four years to study and do it) every scrap and note of mine to Mme. Coulomb on identical paper and make any interpolations he liked? The fact that she was preparing for Treachery ever since 1880 is a proof of it. That other fact that when Subba Row wrote to me to Paris to collect my recollections well, to remember and tell him whether I had ever written to her any compromising letters for if so it was better to buy them of her at any price, than to allow her to ruin my character and perhaps the T.S. — I answered him (May 1884) that I had never written her anything that I should fear to see published; that she lied, and could do what she pleased. All this is a good proof, I believe, to show that I had never written any such thing. Otherwise, and indeed if I could have forgotten that hardly three months before I had given her written instructions to deceive Mr. Jacob Sassoon at Poona — then would Olcott be justified in saying that I suffer from "mental aberrations" that I am an insane lunatic! Subba Row has my letter written to him in answer to his from Paris. This is "the authoritative statement" (for me, of course not for the Psychists) that I have. I have seen Coulomb copying one of such scraps of mine, at his table, in a scene shown to me by Master in the Astral light. Shall my statement be believed, you think? Then what's the use! The Coulombs and Patterson were afraid to let me see these letters and handle them, for they believe and know what Masters can do: they fear the powers of those, whom they pretend to have been invented by me. Otherwise why should they have extracted from Hodgson the promise not to allow the few letters he got from them, into my hands? Ask him, ascertain why he has never shown them to me? Why he never told me even that he got them? This is a serious fact, more serious than it appears on the surface.
I authorise you to do with the MS. (a kind of my phenomenal biography) entitled "Madame Blavatsky" — whatever you like. Mrs. Holloway made a row with me (ask Miss Arundale and Mohini) for asking you to look it over, correct and publish it. She chaffed me and called me a fool, saying that I voluntarily gave you up that which would bring me fame and money; that once you got it into your hands you would never give it me back, but use it and publish it in some new book of yours. Ah, she did say of you complimentary things on that day — a few days before her departure. I was disgusted but held my tongue. Please keep it and accept it as a present if you can ever use it. I shall never have anything to do with it — so I give it to you, for ever and to the end, to either use it or give it to Mrs. Sinnett to make paper curls of it.
I do not think Olcott shall ever visit America — no fear of that, for he is too afraid of his horrid wife and her new husband. Your idea is very good. I hope I shall see you before you start.
Well I believe I have written a volume. Please excuse, but you know I cannot condense my thoughts as you do.
1,000 salaams and good wishes to Mrs. Sinnett and all the friends. Do not forget the old —
"Exile of Wurzburg,"
Yours ever and for ever,
H. P. BLAVATSKY.
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