Our thoughts tonight are focussed upon H. P. B. and the Theosophical Movement which she founded; being the messenger of the Masters of Wisdom to the Western world of the cycle.
It is a fact often observed in history that founders of great movements see simply and clearly what their followers succeed in explaining and amplifying into complications and terrible darkness. The impress of personality after personality succeeds all too often in stamping out the original likeness. And all this is done by zealous partisans. But in this case, though much has been said and done to injure and obscure, we are not so far away from the Founder's purity of purpose as to be unable to perceive and adopt it if we will.
First we must strive to see as they saw. To appreciate the wisdom that guided H. P. B. we can study her written works and see what they cover, and also what they omit to cover. By this means we may gain an insight into the way we should conduct our movement so as not to lose the force which set it in motion. Her written works cover: The nature of the Universe; the nature of Man; the basis of Truth behind all World Religions; the conquest of Personality; the dangers of Psychism; the appeal to the Real Self within each individual.
They do not cover nor recommend: particular lines of activity or conduct; particular creeds or religions; particular political or social views.
The thinking man is placed in possession of what he metaphorically calls an Algebraic equation. In this equation the relative values of that All Presence — the Higher Self — and the Personal Self — are clearly expressed. There is a factor for action.
Once in possession of that Algebraic equation each individual's life and circumstances can be written in, and every problem successfully solved. Every action sincerely taken as a result of such a process will inevitably harmonize with every other action.
By this means Unity is assured, while room is left for the inevitable differences arising in a world of maximum differentiation.
How else shall our nucleus of brotherhood contain members of various convictions — members of all religions or none? The moment any particular phase of creed or practice is placed in a favored light is not some member of another belief injured? The moment one political bias is championed, is not censure passed on those of opposite convictions?
We have to achieve our inner unity by allowing an outer diversity. Individual freedom must be maintained, and our collective functions kept so broad and elemental that they embrace every manifestation.
Our presence here tonight is a token that we hold to that inner Unity so clearly envisaged and wisely followed by the founders of our movement. Let us apply ourselves to study and adopt that Algebraic equation presented to us through H. P. B., leaving our fellow students to apply it also each in the sincerity of his heart.
So shall our Movement one day again become one inwardly, and perhaps outwardly should we earn it by our Karma.
1. Reprinted from The English Theosophical Forum, June, 1936. (return to text)