What we love better than we love ourselves we find means to safeguard and protect. Theosophy is that to us, because it is the wellspring of truth and spiritual Tightness, and because it brings the promise of better things, like the waters of life, to humanity.
We know from what unsullied heights the pure stream of Theosophy comes down to us; and there is no wish nearer to our hearts than that of preserving its purity: passing it on to others without divergences from its fundamental verities. For well we know in this regard that any departure from the original, eternal quality of its essential truths can only come about through the vagrant and transitory conceptions of our imperfectly evolved human minds.
Herein lies the significance and value to Theosophists of the traditional words that have come down through the centuries in the schools of Theosophy: "Iti maya srutam" — "Thus have I heard"; with the added implication: " — and thus only do I pass it on." Here we have the surest of all safeguards to the preservation of the teachings: not in the mere formal utterance of words, of course, but in the traditional attitude of mind and heart which gives us, first, in all our studies, an intentness upon the true import of the teachings; and then, the same high quality of intellectual honesty in giving them forth again.
There is profound interest attaching to this tradition of the passing on of the teachings. It takes us back through the ages to the half-forgotten days of the Mystery-Schools, and farther back to that period in Atlantis when the Mystery-Schools had their beginnings; and beyond these again to the Divine Instructors of the later Third Root-Race, when they first entrusted to mankind the treasures of divine wisdom. Through such a lapse of time the Ancient Wisdom has been passed down from teacher to pupil, from elder to younger, with such integrity that we have it now, today, as pure and fresh as when the gods first sent it forth. We are the beneficiaries of this long, long labor of fidelity; we are the generation whose turn it is now to preserve and pass on the sacred heritage.