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

Letter No. 34

{March 21}

{March 27, H. P. B. and Olcott left Nice for Paris. April 5, Olcott, with Mohine, left to preside at the London Lodge election. Mr G. B. Finch was elected President, to replace Mrs. Kingsford, to whom with Maitland and others, Olcott issued a new charter to form the "Hermetic" Lodge. H. P. B. arrived unexpectedly that same evening and stayed with the Sinnetts one week. She did not go to London again until after the middle of September.}


Mr dear Mr. Sinnett,

Every body in the house is gone to the theatre — even Olcott. Sick and ill — humoured I am sitting alone in my quiet room with that new "Reply to Subba Row" by the irrepressible "Perfect Way Twins" — lying before me. And now, I am distinctly ordered by Boss to pen for your benefit the following questions:

(1) Are you, in the presence of this literary farago, of this jungle of sleight-of-hand logic and wrangling going to remain silent?

(2) If we wait for Subba Row's Reply to this Reply — then we will have to eat our livers for over three months; and even then ten to one he will only laugh, and as I am not there to stand over him and make him write an answer — he will pay no attention to it.

(3) No one will undertake to go over again (not I, at all events) the whole ground of misconceptions and, as I now see, wilful misrepresentations that begun with their Manifesto No. 1, and now ends with this new "Reply." The ground was well covered by Subba Row; he explained the whole situation and their mistakes as clearly as one could put it in English; and yet, even now they find holes to pick in, and S.R. is made to appear inconsistent — if not worse. May be, possibly, I am not English scholar enough to take in correctly and in every case, the profound logic and the objections made by both — Messrs. Maitland and Kingsford and L.C. Massey; — but I consent to be hung if there is a fool, in this world, fool enough to fail perceiving that the whole thing is a hopeless case of the most stupid wrangling, under the garb of logic and philosophy. Besides which the latter production contains a clear misstatement of our beliefs. When, where, how, and what is there in the combined writings of the Mahatma — (may He forgive me for having thus thrown His holy Name in pasture to the 19th century Seers and Initiates!) — Subba Row, myself, or any one else that gives them the right to say that we believe in an actual Satan (pp. 16, 17 et seq.). We, who reject with all our powers the absurd idea of a personal God, we will believe in a personal Satan!! Do they joke or are they in dead earnest? Do they really believe that such is our belief, or is it a mere literary ruse Hang me if I know!

(4) And then, what do they mean by — "the Master has not yet attained to the highest Mysteries, and does not know the truth on this point" (i.e. Satan). Now this, I would call simply "cheek" and "impudence" (see p. 16).

(5) And what is the implied meaning of the last para. on page 17, and the first on p. 18? Do they mean to suggest that while Mahatma K. H. may not have reached as yet "the degree of initiation to which the disclosure of such truth belongs" — he, Mr. M. and she Mrs. K. have reached that degree? And do you mean to tell me that there may be found even one person among your theosophists in England fool enough to rely more on the assumed initiation in a preceding life, and therefore infallible illumination in the present life of Mrs. K. — than on the teachings of Mahatma K. H.? Proh pudor! — my dear "Brethren and Sistern" enjoy your Karma for having elected her President. It is your and Mr. Massey's (your friends) doings. And now even he goes against you and your Master. Vade retro Satanas! How can I ever face a Society some of whose members harbour such insulting thoughts and express them in print? This is why I cannot come to London. Were I to follow the dictates of my affection for both of you and my desire to get personally acquainted with such charming members as Mrs. and Miss Arundale, Mr. Finch, Mr. Wade and others I know the results. I would either jump up and tear heaven and hell at the first opportunity, or have to explode like a bomb-shell. I cannot keep calm. I have accumulated bile and secreted gall for over six months during this Kingsford-Sinnett embroglio; I have held my tongue and been forced to write civil letters which are now represented in the light of "sympathetic and encouraging correspondence." I — well, never mind what, and how much I suffered of these coleres rentrees; my present illness is more than partly due to them. But, I am not born for a diplomatic career. I would spoil the broth, and do no good — at any rate, not till after the whole thing is settled and the equilibre-theosophique est retabli.

But now, why should not you call in a meeting before Olcott's arrival? Why should not you draw the attention of every sensible man to the transparent humbug of the last Reply? Why should not you try and smooth his way? The worst of it is, those eternal references to Gough's translations of Sanskrit texts! Is it possible that Mr. Massey should rely upon the dead letter, disfigured renderings of Gough or even a Max Muller, of Sanskrit texts, the inner meaning of which can be understood only by initiates! But all this is hopeless. Lillie is "an authority" now — and Gautama Buddha shown by him a theist, and Gough has transfigured Sankaracharya into a believer of Iswara, a personal God, a Being!!!

I do not know what it is that Master ordered Olcott to do. He keeps his own counsel and says nothing. But I feel sure that even the Chohan would not force her upon the Society against the will of the majority. Let her found a Society apart from yours — a distinct "Esoteric Christianity London Lodge," and you establish a Society of your own. How is it possible to accept the proposed farce of a Theos. Society alleged to draw its teachings from our Mahatmas, when, as soon as the latter will say anything that does not quite agree with Mrs. K.'s inspiration and prophetic utterances — their teachings will be forthwith attributed to either "a wilful misrepresentation of doctrine," or, from the fact that the teacher has not as yet reached the degree of initiation to which disclosure of such truth belongs." Who is to check the utterances and denials of Mrs. K.? Who can control her assumptions and assertions. She will say — "It is not so, I know it, for I have been initiated during the reign of Psametichus or Sesostris," and the people will have to open their mouths and hold their tongues. Impossible! Funny position. Oh how inexpressibly higher than her stands in her intuitional knowledge, kindness, and modesty my dear Lady Caithness.

Well tata.
Yours in rags,
H. P. Blavatsky.

You may read this to our friends, to all if you like.

P.S. Another thing. She represents you as an awful fanatic, an intolerant materialist and one who will force his Esot: Buddhism as a complete system, now this is bosh — Master says. I know through him that you do nothing of the kind. You are a loyal, faithful and uncompromising friend and chela of Mahatma K. H. and you stand by him, as I now see, as true as any of his immediate chelas. But I also know that the "Celestial Gemini" correspond with A. O. H. (who has now lost his guru by death, the Almora Sage who was to expose our Masters as Dugpas) and I recognise more than one solitary stroke of his pen in their writings and gratuitous insulting assumptions about what our Masters may be. Why then — Boss asks, don't you write and refute all her fibs and expose the malevolent charges. "He hurts the Society and his own cause" — says Boss — "Tell him so from me." Now, my Boss wants her — since the old Chohan is in love with her vegetarianism and her love for animals — to remain President — but not necessarily of your Society. The Chohan wants her in the Society, but would not consent to force the opinion or vote of a single member of the L.L. He will not influence the last of them, for he then would be no better than the Pope who thinks he can enforce implicit obedience and then avoid to take upon himself the person's Karmas. This is what Boss has just been telling me to write to you. Hence you better prepare and seek the opinion and advice of every member who is of your way of thinking and get ready to split yourselves in two Societies, for this is what the Colonel has to do — I am told. I believe you misunderstood Mahatma K. H.'s telegrams and letters — so Mohini tells me. For they wanted her to remain President so far as They were concerned and to show They did not care a rap for her implied and even expressed insults. Mahatma K. H. had to make it a sinequanon of his teaching you so long as there was but one L.L. and one Society. But since the Chohan is desirous there should be two, on the strength of Art. I (Rules) i.e. "composed solely of co-religionsts" — let her preside over her "London Lodge" and Esoteric Christians — and you over the "Tibetan Lodge" and Esoteric Buddhists. . Correct. M.

Two words of myself. In Marseilles upon landing — a gastritis; in Nice upon leaving the train — a bronchitis (dragged to the French theatre where I went to sleep in a corner of the Ducal box, slept during 3 acts, and caught cold through the opened door). Now, gum boils, neuralgia, rheumatics and sciatica, with fever in my ears and diptheria in my toes. A pretty specimen of healthy humanity! On the 26th we go to Paris and on the 4th or 5th Olcott has orders to go to London. Uncle Sam has pneumonia and is laid up in Rome, he telegraphs me. Karma. Ever since my arrival I fell in with a colony of Russian aristocrats — the Tchelishtchof — the Demsdofs, Lvofs, Count Koshkela Dolgorouki and the tutti quanti of titled stars. They exasperated me, and gum boils notwithstanding, drag me to their dinners and lunches, their sumptious palaces and etc. accepting my dressing gowns and evening deshabilles, cigarettes, and compliments with a Christ like forbearance doing great honour to their patriotic feelings. They are proud of me they say; they invite me back home (I wish they may get it) and invite Babula and admire him, permitting him even to kick against the indispensable pair of white cotton gloves at dinner for the sake of admiring his flaming yellow livery and earrings. I will have an extra earring put in his nose before I go to Paris. I met here also a lady, with whom I used to play when quite little children both of us, at Saratof when Grandfather was Gov. General of the place. She knew me by name, having heard of my felicitous marriage with old father Blavatsky, and fell this morning into my arms weeping and wiping her nose on my sympathetic bosom. It was very touching — very. Thus I am — or rather Babula is — the sensation of the day here. At Marseilles he had an admiring audience of 500 men strong, running after him to admire his gold earrings and theosophical livery. The Duchess takes him out near the coachman when driving out alone and makes much of him.

Oh Moses — sweet civilisation!

H. P. B.

As I was going to send this I found to-day (Saturday) your letter. Well I think, if not K. H. then my Boss answers your questions — Is it not the same? Its ages I did not hear from K. H.!

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