The Letters of H. P. Blavatsky to A. P. Sinnett

Letter No. 11

{Scott had married Hume's daughter, December 28, 1881}

June 20.

My dear Boss,

I got your second letter of June 13 with traces of the bitter tears shed upon the paper, and it is this letter I mean to answer before proceeding to talk business. We will leave aside the "coarse fibered" one, as you call Scott — this course fiberness is not what would ever trouble me, but it is the thought that he has himself through his own fault lost all chances of recovery and protection. Yet I feel as much friendship and affection for him as I did heretofore. I no more accuse him of having fallen a prey to an evil influence than I would were he to catch the small pox by showing devotional care to his wife (unworthy of it as she may be) when she was afflicted with the disease. He will repent, mark my word, and when I come to Bombay I will send you something that will make you change your opinion of him.

But it is something else that troubles me on your account and this is a twofold matter. 1st your obstinate, determined plan of taking the public in general and the Anglo-Indians in particular into the confidence of every phenomenon that takes place; and 2nd your entirely mistaken position, and preeminently antagonistic attitude towards those who rule the destinies as yet of both K. H. and M.

Maybe I am now speaking under inspiration and you better not pooh-pooh my advice. First then, and concerning the first question: I most decidedly, emphatically and uncompromisingly kick against your eternal desire to do everything I do (in the way of stupid phenomena) with an eye to public enlightenment upon the subject. I do not care about public opinion. I despise thoroughly and with all my heart Mrs. Grundy, and do not care a snap of my finger whether the Wm. Beresfords and the Hon. "What d'ye call them" think well or bad of me as regards the phenomena produced. I refuse to proselytise them at the expense of the little self-respect and dignity that my duty to those beyond, and to the Cause have left in me. I rather not convert them, wherever the Brothers' names are mixed up with a phenomenon. Their names have been sufficiently dragged in the mud; they have been misused and blasphemed against by all the penny-a-liners of India. Nowadays people call their dogs and cats by the name of "Koot-hoomi" and "the dear old lady" has become with the "Himalayan Brothers" a household-caricature. Now, neither the "dear old lady" per se, nor K. H. and M. — less than all THEY — care about this mocking fiendishness; but we have others behind our backs who, on a general principle would rather not allow names connected with the great Brotherhood to be besmeared in the eyes of the native multitudes (about the Pelings they do not care in the least). For over two years we fight you and I for this question; you have always insisted that without the Brothers there was no salvation for the T.S., that to take out their names from the concern was like throwing out the part of the Prince of Denmark from Hamlet and — you were wrong. You may insist till doomsday that you were and are right, I will always dispute the point, for I know what I am talking about and I know my actors behind the scenery, while you do not. Therefore, whenever I can avoid giving the public a bone to pick over my and the Brothers'! heads, I will do so.

O'Conor's letter was not bargained for, and no one expected it. O'Conor — had I sent him an immediate reply — would have but sneered, even while believing it and would have attributed it at best to mediumship, to the sweet "Ernest" & Co., and that is what I will NEVER consent to. If, after seeing what he has seen R. Scott, the best, the most honest and sincere of men, turns round against the Brothers and abuses and now and then even disbelieves entirely their existence, what could I ever expect from a land leaguer, — a friend of Miss Minnie Hume Scott!! Oh do, "shut up"!; excusing myself for my rude "coarse fibered" expression. You know I love and respect you above all other Englishmen in India. I love you personally for what you have done for me, and I respect you for your firm, fearless and independent attitude in fighting for the Brothers and the Society. But there is that unreasonable, most dangerous feature in you which is liable some day to ruin all irretrievably and that is that thirst of throwing that which is holy to the dogs and scatter pearls before swine, and the utterly fatal idea, that you can ever bring the CHIEFS — beyond — to your way of thinking and writing. Hundred times have I told you and, even K. H. has hinted at that in his letters to you, that, notwithstanding all his personal regard for you, at the first motion of the Chohan's finger he would vanish out of your reach for ever and ever: you would never hear of him so long as you lived. How mistaken is your notion that there can be no Theos. Soc. without showing the Brothers "like a red rag before a bull's face" as they express it — will be proved to you in the forthcoming Supplement of the Theosophist. If its contents will not show to you the real practical good the Society is doing — every Brother put aside — for the Natives, (and remember, this is the main object of K. H. and M.) then nothing will.

No. 2. "All this testing and probation business" . . . Well, suppose it is "so repulsive to the straight forward European natures" (you might, perhaps, not identify so thoroughly all European natures with your nature and thus be nearer to truth), suppose it is, can you help it? And do K. H.'s and M.'s chiefs care for your or even my kicking? Is it they who ever tried to fight their way to you, or is it you who went after them? Did they ever encourage you or any one else? Did they ever show the slightest favour even to Olcott — their humble, submissive, patient, never murmuring slave? It is a "to be, or not to be" — for you. You have either to accept them as they are or else — leave them. It is [as] though you lectured the peak of Mount Everest, for its coldness and ruggedness. Such ideas and complaints as expressed in your letter to me will not shorten the distance between you and K. H. but rather widen the gulf. You are "surrounded by meshes of tests and probations wrapped in invisible threads" — you may bet your life on it. Well, why don't you make an effort and disentangle yourself by a supreme effort? Break them, it is very easy — only with them you will break the thread that connects you with K. H. that's all. It is not at his hands, that you have to submit to the "loathsome" horror of being (not) probably (but for a certainty) on probation, for he himself may be said to be on probation — only a far higher and far more difficult one. The CHIEFS do not make any difference during the first years between "Englishmen of the better sort" and any other Englishman or native. In fact, their hearts are rather for the natives. They fear and mistrust (as a nation) the English nation, and in their eyes a Russian, a Frenchman, an Englishman or any other son of Christendom and civilisation is an object to be hardly, if ever trusted. And do you know who it is, who at the present moment is set the deadliest against you English theosophists among the Shaberons An Englishman, my dear Boss, a countryman of yours, a victim of your British laws and Mrs. Grundy; one who was once upon a time some forty years ago, a highly educated Squire, rich, and a Chief justice in his county, a Greek and Latin scholar. So much — [illustration p. 20]permits me to say to you, and he is at my elbow — and who now is the deadliest enemy of civilisation and Christo-star as he calls Europe. It is he and not the Tibetan or Hindu born Shaberons who mistrusts the rulers of the "Eclectic T.S." and that's all I am allowed to tell you.

"And now choose ye, this day, oh sons of Israel" whether you will worship the gods of your fathers or the new god found by you in the Wilderness.

And to think that you have chosen for your unjust recriminations against their rules and statutes and their time honoured policy just the time when poor K. H. is negotiating as hard as he can, permission to help the Eclectic in Mr. Hume's and your persons, and that of having Eglinton to furnish power without expanding their own! A nice diplomat you, my Boss. Then go and complain if you have the conscience to do so, when we receive instead of consent — REFUSAL. I wonder only, how it is possible that a man of your intellectual calibre should be unable to judge fairly and impartially of the situation. Is it they or you who want them? Is it you or they who cares for further intercourse? They may be, and, I have no doubt are quite alive to the good you can do the Eclectic and the Theosoph. Society proper. But you ought to know by this time that you will ever be useless to them personally, to their Fraternity. That you are not of the stuff they make the chelas with, and that, if you are allowed even a correspondence with K. H. it is absolutely out of regard for him, the best, the most promising of their candidates for Buddhaship or rather Boddhisatwaship; and that you make his work far more difficult and even endanger his personal position by such a contemptuous criticism upon their actions. But you are a true Englishman; and as you would treat a Burmah politically, imposing [on] it your will and interference, so you think you can treat occult Tibet — by interfering with its psychological internal policy. Well, you are arrogant and conceited as a nation, I must say, if you, one of the best of its sons do not seem to realize the utter uselessness of what you do, and to instinctively so to say, seek to bring to bear even upon the Tibetan Adepts the weight of your universal interference! I hope you will forgive me the rudeness of my remarks — if rudeness there is, which I hope not — for I speak with a view to your own good and fearing lest you should throw new difficulties in the way of your connection with K.H. and my "Boss".

Your question I cannot give to K. H. for I do not see him at all nowadays — hardly for a second or two sometimes and for that reason see as little of Djual Kul. But I have Tibetan MSS. just being translated for the Theosophist upon that question and I will make Deb write them out for you as soon as I return to Bombay. I cannot understand how you did not. [The remainder of this letter is missing. — Ed.]

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