(Lecture delivered February 16, 1930)
I am happy to be here this afternoon. I did not expect to be able to be here, and I had provided three most excellent speakers to carry you in thought into some of the beautiful realms of theosophical consciousness; but then I was told that the day was beautiful, and that the Temple would be filled with visitors; and I said to myself: These kind hearts, these friends, who have come from afar to hear what the theosophical Leader has to say, ought to hear him. So, despite my cold, which has nearly deprived me of a voice to speak to you with, I came.
As usual, I am going to answer questions this afternoon. I have been answering questions for almost a year, and as I said once before, I am beginning to feel as if I were a perambulating encyclopedia. I am asked questions on all kinds of subjects: from the best way to obtain a wife or a husband, or from how to grow rich very quickly, up to what is the best way in which to reach spiritual illumination.
It is the latter kind of questions that I prefer. I do not want to tell some other unfortunate man or woman how he or she should choose a partner in life; or perhaps give you counsel which in itself might be excellent, but if followed by someone with whom it did not originate, might lead him to the penitentiary — not, I mean, that in telling you how to grow rich quickly, you will become a criminal. No. I do not mean that; but I do not think that any human being is so godlike in the present age that he can safely be told certain esoteric and secret mysteries regarding recondite forces of nature.
But I do want to tell you, and I am here to deliver this message to yo,u who you are, what you are, what you have within you, to tell you something of the splendid powers and faculties as yet undeveloped in the average human being: delivering to you the message of the ages, which is older than thinking man, because it is rooted in the very operations and truths of the universe; operations and truths which have been seen by great seers, known by great sages, who have sent the spirit of themselves behind the veil of the outward seeming into the abysses of Mother Nature, and have brought back from behind the veils of material substance, and from that inner supernal light, the messages of truth, and have formulated these in human tongues. That is theosophy.
I want to tell you that each one of you is an incarnate god feebly expressing its transcendent powers at the present time through the enshrouding veils of the lower self, which is the human soul and the gross physical body which hems this glory in. I want to tell you the same sublime message that all the great seers and sages of the ages have taught to men. It is my message because it is common truth. And when you understand it, it will become of right, de facto, your message; and it will be incumbent upon you as normal human beings to pass on the glad tidings. Tell others, then, what you have experienced and what has come to you. Give them then the light that you have received; give them the hope, the encouragement, the illumination that you have. Tell your fellowmen what they have within themselves, what they are.
"Ye are gods," says the Christian Scripture, re-echoing the wisdom-religion of the ancients; and it is true. Each one of you is an incarnate deity, a living god; and from this source it is that spring forth and flow through your brain-mind as best they can — stepped down, so to say, on to our gross physical plane — all the messages that make men great, that make the great man, the greater man, and the still greater man. All the inspirations of genius, all the great thoughts which have made and unmade civilizations (provided they be great thoughts) — all the wonderful messages that have been delivered by the great ones of the earth to their fellow human beings — all these come forth from within.
The first step is to recognize the truth and to believe it. The battle of union, towards union, for union, with your own inner god is more than half won when you recognize the truth. And oh, how splendid is the pathway seen after that! How glorious is it! Leading ever more inwards and inwards, which is the same as saying upwards and upwards, ever higher and higher, till you become at one with your own kin — the gods — who are the governors and rulers of the universe, and of whom you are the children — O degenerate children, feeble expressions as yet of your divine ancestry, but still showing it in divine faculties within you, in the love in your hearts, in the compassion which moves your souls, in the divine feeling of pity. Think!
Every man, I tell you, is in the core of his being an immanent Christ, a living god; or, if you like to change the figure of speech, he is an awakened Buddha within.
Or, do you prefer the other theory, now in abandonment, believed in no longer except by the few die-hards, that you are nothing but a more or less evolved ape — a theory of which there is no proof whatsoever — and that the ape in its turn is nothing but an aggregate of physical atoms, moved by chemical energy, as they call it. Words! Theories!
What we do know is that man is and has these divine faculties within him, and expresses them. These things we do know. Theosophists are evolutionists through and through and through and through, but we are not Darwinists. We believe that progress is endless, that we go continuously on forever, from worse to better, from better to better, from better to still better. However, there is never a best and thereafter an ending.
I want these thoughts to sink into your minds. They are not mine. They are not invented. They are truth: the same old wisdom-truths, coming only the immortal gods know from what distant epoch in the past when spiritual beings walked among men and taught them, a fact which all the scriptures and great philosophies of the world allude to when they speak of the gods having lived among men and walked with them and taught them.
So you see, knowing this path within, this divine path of union with your inner selfhood, with the Christ-spirit within you, with the Buddha within as the Oriental would say, you have a true key to the mysteries of your being, and can open doors within you and see the vision beautiful on the mountaintops of the Mystic East; and seeing this vision beautiful, you can translate it into words for the benefit of your fellowmen who have not received these primal truths; or, having received them, who did not understand them.
You can go into yourselves, O friends — you can go into yourself, O friend — and know ever greater truths progressively in proportion as you penetrate more and more and more inwardly, approaching always this divine source. And why can you do this? Because this god within you is rooted in the universe of which it is an inseparable portion. It is a spark of the cosmic Fire. It is fire of the fire of the universe, blood of its blood, flesh of its flesh, bone of its bone, life of its life, individuality of its individuality — using these human terms merely in order to get the thought into your minds; and therefore in proportion as you evolve and enter inwards into the recesses and arcana of your own being, you can self-consciously gain in ever greater degree this union and sense of oneness with the entire universe.
Do you see the thought? Therefore have all the ancient sages and oracles taught man: Know thyself, thy spiritual self, for in knowing yourself you can know, and will know, the universe.
I tell you that the greatest difficulty a theosophical teacher has is in breaking the crystallized molds of mind, the prejudices, and the unwillingness to hear sympathetically. All truths seeming new have met with the same cold shoulder, instead of the hand of welcome. It has been the same with theosophy during the past thirty or forty years; but now, in our days, after nigh upon fifty years of lecturing and book writing, and giving up our lives to this wondrous philosophy, theosophy is coming into its own. Our Society is now growing rapidly, and its influence, in teaching and in thought, is spreading all over the world. Such ideas as our Theosophical doctrine of karma — the doctrine that ye reap what ye sow — and such theosophical doctrines as reincarnation, are becoming common talk among thinking people today. Even the movies use them as themes for their dramas. Books, romances, are written around and about these theosophical teachings, and karma and reincarnation are but two of our theosophical doctrines, although two important keys of thought.
During the course of my lectures I have received many interesting questions. I try to answer them all, and injustice to those who send these questions to me, I will say that I have not yet received one frivolous communication. Here is the first question that I will answer this afternoon. It is one that I received on last Sunday, I think, but did not have time to answer it then.
"Is hypnotism, even when used for ostensibly good purposes, a dangerous practice? For instance, when quite a young child, I suffered from an acute physical difficulty until I was apparently cured of it by a form of hypnotism. The difficulty did not recur until after I was twenty; but I have always felt that this use of hypnotism in my case had a deleterious effect, in that it prevented me from being able to use my willpower when I wished to do so and felt that I ought to do so."
Most certainly do I believe that psychologization, which is commonly called hypnotism, is a very dangerous power indeed. It is a power. The misuse of any power is an evil thing, and any man or woman who uses a power which he or she does not understand, is misusing that power, running risks, doing a thing which may readily eventuate in evil; and no hypnotist, to use the popular word today, knows anything certain and real of the nature of the very dangerous and subtle force which he blindly tries to use, and does use to a certain limited extent.
The danger in hypnotism is this: it is an outside control of the intermediate nature of the constitution of the human being — of what is commonly called his mind and emotional part. Do you like that idea of someone controlling you? I do not. It is not the way in which to grow naturally. It is utterly immaterial that the hypnotist may have a good motive; utterly immaterial that his intentions may be altruistic; quite beside the mark that his wish may be to do good. That condition betters the situation, but the situation itself is bad. The so-called hypnotist puts his own will, his own thought, his own mental energy, into the psychological economy or apparatus of some other human being; and how does that really help that other human being? The victim's own inner economy, inner apparatus, is shoved aside to the extent that the power works. Are you going to lean all your life, have someone carry you all your life?
Remember, man is a composite being. To use the old Christian trichotomy — that is, a division into three parts — he is said to be composed of a spirit, a soul, and a body. Theosophists use the same division for convenience, but we have a far more scientific way of dividing the inner constitution of the human being; but at any rate, the soul here spoken of is the intermediate part of man's constitution which I have already mentioned. This intermediate part is the human soul: the average man whom you meet, that part of him which is between the ordinary physical body and the god within.
Suggestion is one of the forms of psychologization. You can suggest a man into doing almost anything. You can get control of his will; you can send him to sleep, send his body to sleep, as well as his mind; and this latter state is hypnotism, properly speaking, and it is not nearly as dangerous as gaining control of the man's will, of his mentality, of his emotional nature. When you do this, you change the action of that intermediate nature of the human constitution, because actually you have introduced a new current, a new impulse, a new motive, a new energy, into that intermediate nature of the human being upon whom you are operating, and you can apparently dam back, perhaps even apparently cure, disease. But you do so at great risk. You are doing that human being a great moral and psychological injury. He is thus prevented from himself working out his destiny, prevented from using the splendid powers of his own will, prevented from using his own inner spiritual and mental energies.
Jesus did not work in that way; the Buddha did not work in that way. No great sage or seer ever has acted in that way. I tell you again that it is a very dangerous thing to do. You are not helping the individual at all. The time will come, in this or in a later life, when that human being, weakened as he has become by your operating upon him, will be in a worse fix than he is at the present time. Remember the doctrine of karma: what ye are now, we have sown for yourselves in the fabric of your character in the past, and therefore you are today reaping what you then cast into your character as seeds. As ye sow, ye shall reap. Then, when the psychologizer dies, do you know what happens to the unfortunate victim? He is worse than ever before.
Fortunately, the psychologizers, those who use psychologization, the so-called hypnotists, have very little real power. This is a fortunate thing. Consequently the damage that they do to their fellowmen is much less than it might be. But I would as lief go to the top of a high cliff and dash my body to the rocks below, as ever to think of passing over the control of my soul to some other human being. I am a man, and I must live a man's life. It is my duty so to do. I consider it a moral crime to psychologize another human being, even with his consent. The consent in this case means really nothing at all, because human beings today know scarcely anything of what psychologization or so-called hypnotism is. The consent therefore is consent given in utter ignorance of the facts.
You will find hospitals employing professional hypnotists, not only for the purpose, apparently, of quieting patients, but also, it would seem, for rendering them insensible to both major and minor operations. While the motive here is good, and the results as a rule are less evil than they would be in the cases of indiscriminate meddling, nevertheless, the principle is the same.
Read our theosophical books; you will get the whole theory of the matter that we are discussing laid before you. Psychologization is radically wrong. The truth is that people as a general rule are afraid of suffering and reaping the consequences of their own acts, reaping what they themselves have sown in the past, and they think that in psychological phenomena, such as hypnotism so called, they can avoid going through the karmic or consequential results of their own former actions; but it is foolish, because nature herself one day will take account even of this attempt to escape the just consequences of one's own former actions, and the results will be worse than what may be in the present a deplorable condition of body and mind.
Psychologization or hypnotism was not in the teaching of Jesus, nor in that of any other great seer and sage. Theosophy teaches us that as we sow, we shall reap; and these indeed are the words of Jesus. Therefore, be careful what you sow, for nature is not mocked. You will be called to account for everything that you do and think and feel, because each thought is a seed sown in your character, and it will bear its fruit when the time comes for it to bring that fruit forth. You will be the sufferer as well as those who are linked with you in destiny.
The next question before me is as follows:
"Does the fall of the personal mark the ascent of the spiritual?"
I think that this is quite a common idea; but I don't think that it is true, unless perhaps it may be said to be true in a very general way of speaking. It is our Theosophical teaching that every part of the human economy is useful if devoted to its proper purposes, and in its proper sphere. It is not part of our teaching that certain portions of the human constitution should be killed. Not at all.
Nature knows better than that. Nature is wiser than that. It is not the fall of the personal which frees the spiritual man; it is the raising of the personal into becoming spiritual, which is the work of evolution — what the Christians do not understand but have in the back of their minds when they refer to the sublime teaching of their Master, Jesus, in speaking of salvation — which is not a killing or a falling down of a part of you, but is a raising or salvaging of your lower portions to nobler and superior uses.
You have will; you have intelligence; you know what the teachings of the Law are. The great sages and seers of the ages have told you these teachings: raise the personal, so that it shall become a fit vehicle, a clean and pure channel for passing into the human consciousness the rays of glory streaming from the god within, these rays of glory being rays of consciousness of the spirit, of the spiritual or divine consciousness.
What we are trying to do is the same thing that natural evolution in its slow age-long process is trying to accomplish — to raise the lower up to become higher — not to kill it, not to down it; and when the personal shall have become transfigured, when the personal shall be able to manifest more or less fully the sublime inflow from the god within you, your own inner, spiritual-divine splendor, then you will have men walking the earth like gods, thinking like gods, acting like gods, behaving like gods. Ye are gods in very truth!
Do you understand the idea? It is as simple as it can be. It is a teaching of all the great religions, of all the great philosophies. As Jesus himself said: "Greater things than I do shall ye do." Jesus, called the Christos, never claimed anything for himself which he did not promise to his fellow men, and he taught the same theosophical message that we teach today, but conveyed in the phrases of the period, in words fit for and appropriate to the men to whom he was speaking.
You know what evolution is, I presume, according to our theosophical teachings. when I use the I have frequently said that theosophists are evolutionists through and through and through. Theosophists mean by evolution the bringing forth of what the evolving entity is in its inner parts. As the acorn brings forth the oak, as the apple-seed brings forth the apple-tree — not a thistle or a fig or something different from its own life-stream — so do all entities, animate or so-called inanimate, during the course of the ages, evolve what is lying latent within them.
Evolution, therefore, with theosophists means the unwrapping, the unrolling, the unfolding, the bringing forth, of what is inwrapped, inrolled, infolded, within — in the core of the evolving entity; and this after all is but another way of saying growth, for evolution and growth are fundamentally the same thing.
A microscopic seed becomes, in right circumstances, a little child; and the little child grows, evolves — for growth and evolution are the same — into a six-foot man, expressing in his daily life, in his efforts, in his thoughts, in his actions — good or bad — what is within, therefore expressing his character. That is evolution.
It is the same rule and procedure in the small — that is, in an ordinary human life, in one human life — as it is in the great, that is, in the evolution of a sun, of a planet, of a human race, of whatnot. Everything that is grows, advances, develops, progresses, and can bring out nothing, can be nothing, except what is within itself, in germ, in the beginning; and later this germ expresses itself as faculty and power in an increase of consciousness, in an increase of vision, in an increase in intelligence: in a higher development, in other words, of the inner, real man. That is evolution.
Here is an odd question: I wonder how you would answer it.
"Every one can master a grief but he that hath it. (SHAKESPEARE: Much Ado About Nothing, Act III, Scene ii)
"Was Shakespeare right?"
Well, it depends upon how you construe the statement: "Every one can master a grief but he that hath the grief." I think that Shakespeare was right in one sense; but if you interpret this saying of Shakespeare's literally, implying that a man who grieves is such a weakling that he cannot master his grief, then I will say I do not agree with you. I will say that if Shakespeare meant that, he was a fool. But I don't think that Shakespeare was so foolish as to imply a meaning of that kind. The great English poet's remark is simply a statement of a common fact, that those who have no grief find it easier to master it than the sufferer, with the further implication that we are all prone to give advice to other people who are in distress.
Everybody is very willing indeed to give advice to another who has a grief. Of course, he who grieves feels that he does not need advice so much as a little kindly sympathy and a helping hand. Nevertheless, he most certainly can master his grief, if he will; and just here we may see one difference between the real man, the man who is beginning to feel within his own inner consciousness the working of the god within him, of the immanent Christ, of the glorious Buddha, and the man, on the other hand, who yields weakly to his sorrow, perhaps without even a struggle to overcome it. Is this last case admirable? Of course not.
Furthermore, let me tell you a little secret. I have found that every time I exercise my inner faculties and powers and my will, I grow, I gain. What an expansion of consciousness I have gained, even in this present life, simply by mastering passions, overcoming emotions, and asserting my manhood over those things that otherwise would have mastered me. This really is one of the easiest things in the world to do, once that you have the will to do it; and the results are wonderful, truly wonderful.
"It is written: We are all in the gutter, but some of us are looking at the stars. Are the stars in any way perturbed by our fractional scrutiny?"
Answering this question, it is exceedingly easy to answer with one word: No. But even from the scientific standpoint, I believe that in so answering you would not be stating a fact. The truth is that since nature is one vast organism, everything is connected with everything else; therefore you cannot breathe, you cannot think, without setting in motion energies, forces, which ultimately will reach to the very uttermost limits of our home-universe, and pass beyond those limits to the frontiers of other universes.
Therefore, even a thought about a star touches it in due course of time, with infinitesimal effect, to be sure; but nevertheless this fact instances a wonderful truth. Furthermore it is a truth which makes one reflect.
Yes, the stars are perturbed even by your thought; and for you who think that a star is naught but a mass of blazing gas, even to you, I tell this same fact, for it is even the dictum of our ultramodern science. But to you whose inner vision is more opened and who realize that the glorious luminaries scattered over the blue vault of night are but the physical garments of an inner and brilliant flame of consciousness, manifesting as the splendor of these cosmic suns, even as your consciousness manifests through you as human beings — to you who are thus beginning to be seers, I will tell you that your thought reaches the suns, the stars, and also that each one of you is a child of a sun, therefore an atom of spiritual energy; and what father does not know his child, and respond to its feeble cry?
Ask, and it shall be given unto you. Knock, and it shall be opened unto you. I mean this. If you believe, any one of you, that there is something more in the universe than appears in the outward seeming, and if anything that you have heard in this our Temple of Peace this afternoon gives you an idea that you can gain light, then I say to you: Come, knock, and it shall be opened unto you. This is a promise.
Here is an interesting question:
"In your Sunday afternoon answers to Questions We All Ask, I have gleaned the impression that the theosophical interpretation of Christ's teachings ennobles them, and perhaps returns to them more of their original splendor than is to be found in some of the Christian churches. Would you, please, state clearly the theosophical view concerning Christ in comparison with the conception that is known as Christian?"
Gladly, as far as I may do so in the short time that I have to speak to you here this afternoon; and I regret that I have to touch upon this question so briefly, because it is one which must interest all people of the Occident. You have been brought up, most of you presumably, in one of the churches of Christendom, and know something of what Christian theology has taught, and of what the Christian professors teach today. In this connection I must be truthful with you in answering this question. I must tell you that I am not a Christian. It is only fair that I should state this. I cannot be one, because I have received the grander light; but nevertheless I have many, many good friends in the Christian churches, and for an earnest Christian I have true respect.
My father was a clergyman of the Christian church; he was a devoted man, a very earnest, sincere, and as he expressed it, speaking of his fellow clergymen, he was a pious man; he was a good man. But perhaps because of the fact that I am not a Christian, I can tell you the unbiased truth about Christianity as far as I know it, because my mind is not colored or swayed by any sectarian prejudices.
You know, of course, what the Christian view of Jesus, later called the Christ, has been, and you know perhaps to what that view later changed; and also what it is in our own time. At any rate, I suppose that you do know something of the modern view of Christ. I do not know it fully at all, because the Christian conception of Jesus, called the Christ, has been changing so rapidly within the last few tens of years that I do not know just where to find a definition of that view that would satisfy everybody.
The theosophist has a deep reverence for Jesus called the Christ. You will never hear a true Theosophist speak of that grand and sublime character in any other terms than in words of reverence and of profound respect; and the reason is that we know who he was, and what he was. He was the incarnation of a divinity — I repeat it: the incarnation of a divinity — and was simply one in a long list of outstanding spiritual great ones, the fine flowers of the human race, who have lived and have taught their fellow men, and have ennobled their fellow men; have given hope to millions and millions; have inspired great and noble deeds; and, alas, in each and every case, their character and nature have suffered degradation from a misunderstanding of them by later generations of men.
Just because the theosophist knows who Jesus was, knows why he was called Christ, do we revere that glorious figure of story. However, we say that he was not the sole, the only, Son of God, and this he never claimed for himself. "Ye are gods," was his word to his fellow men, and also did he say: 'Greater things than I do shall ye do.'
And when you remember what I told you in the earlier part of our study together here this afternoon, that each human being is the manifestation in human flesh of a living god, that each human being is an incarnate divinity, with unknown and unsuspected splendid faculties and powers which evolution in time will bring forth into manifestation — when you remember this, you will understand why theosophists speak of Jesus the Christ as one of the elder brothers of mankind, because he was more advanced along the evolutionary pathway than ordinary human beings are. So was Gautama the Buddha; so were many other great men — all of them splendid characters in human history. Oh, how many have there been! And you, each one of you, can be the same, because each one of you in time, if you make the grade, will develop forth the Christlike powers latent in your nature, and when this is accomplished, then you too will be Christs walking the earth.
Jesus the Christ was merely a forerunner of what each human being in the future is destined to be. So was the Buddha; so was Lao-tse; so were Sankaracharya and Krishna, both of India; so in smaller degree but yet in high degree, were Orpheus, Musaeus, Olen, Pythagoras, Apollonius of Tyana, and many others.
The teachings ascribed to Jesus in the New Testament are not new. You won't find a single new thing in all the alleged teaching of Jesus: not one new thing; and in that lies the splendid proof in one sense of the mission of Jesus on earth. He taught the same old wisdom-doctrines that were given to the first human protoplasts aeons and aeons and aeons and aeons in the distant evolutionary past by the spiritual beings who descended among men and worked with them and guided them and taught them. And the man is either degenerate or willfully blind who, after studying the records of history, religious and philosophical, does not see the traces, the insignia, written across and through human life in spiritual flame, setting forth the ideals, the spirit, of what these great beings taught.
Jesus taught theosophy in a manner and in words appropriate to the men of his era; and because what he taught is theosophical, therefore theosophists claim him as one of us. He was the Theosophical Teacher of the people to whom he came in his era, but a very great and noble one; for theosophical teachers vary among themselves, just as ordinary men do. There are the average teachers, then the greater, then the still greater, and finally the greatest, if you like to call them so; but their hierarchy does not stop there. Theosophists speak of Jesus as an avatara. Although the subject is a little difficult, I am going to devote a moment or two to this matter, because it is so important. An avatara is one — and the word is a Sanskrit word — who has a combination of three elements in his being: an inspiring divinity; a highly evolved intermediate nature or soul, the channel of that inspiring divinity; and a very pure, clean physical body.
The difference between an avatara and a sublimely perfected human being who expresses his own inner god is the following: an avatara is one whose intermediate nature has been loaned to him. This is a mystery! Theosophy explains it; and although my time this afternoon is too short to give you the full outline of the meaning of this mystery, nevertheless I cannot allow this matter to pass without giving you some inkling of the truth. I don't want you to go away today, and perhaps read at a later date, in some theosophical book some statement to the effect that I have just made, and then think: The theosophical speaker whom I heard when I was at Point Loma should have told me this — at least he should have alluded to it.
An avatara, then, is the manifestation of this inspiring divinity, through and by means of some great and sublime human being who is the channel for manifesting some of the powers and faculties of this inspiring divinity. On the other hand, in cases where a man's own inner god shines down through his own intermediate nature and he thus manifests the faculties of his own inner god, then he is a human god walking on earth; and such a being we call a Buddha. A Buddha is one who has reached this stage of quasi-divinity in human expression through self-devised efforts lasting through many ages towards union with one's own inner god.
There, then, is the difference between these two classes of great human spiritual luminaries. The One, the avatara, is a sublime natural mystery — not a mystery in the sense of inability to understand it, but a mystery in the sense that the average man has never heard the explanation; while a Buddha is one who has attained the lofty spiritual stature of buddhahood through self-devised efforts lasting through many lives, and thus, in one sense, is really — if the phrase can be used — superior even to an avatara.
Returning, then, to the question, before closing our lecture this afternoon: the theosophist looks upon Jesus the Christ as one of his own theosophical teachers of the past. The theosophist has reverence for him. The theosophist reveres the teachings of Jesus, because those teachings were a part of the theosophy of the age in which Jesus lived. They are the same old wisdom-religion, but not all of it, because the records of Jesus' teachings are still very few. We have only a bare remnant of what Jesus taught, and even according to the New Testament, that is to say, in the Christian records themselves, we note that Jesus taught his disciples in private, but to the public he spoke in figures of speech, in parables.
Never think, then, that theosophy is unsympathetic towards Jesus, or to the teachings of Jesus. Not at all. The contrary is the case. But I personally am not a Christian. For Jesus, my heart is as full of reverence for that sublime being as the most fervently convinced Christian's is; nevertheless I am not a Christian, I have received a still greater light. This greater light has taught me to understand the hearts of my fellows; and I shall be happy, when my time comes to pass on, if I can have won happiness and peace for at least some few thousands of Christians now torn with doubt, whose hearts bleed with the agony of mental indecision. I long to give to them light, to give to them peace, to give to them hope; and therefore I say to them: Go to the records of your own religion, to the original records, if you can find them. Study them with the keys that theosophy gives to you; keep your own religion if you wish, revere your own Jesus Christ; but go to the roots of the religion that you follow. Be, if you like, a Christian theosophist. We have such in our Society, even as we have Buddhist theosophists, and Brahmanist theosophists, and theosophists of other kinds.
So far my success has not been very great. The hand of welcome extended to me in my mission of love has not been cordial; but love, almighty love, which is the cement of the universe, flows in every human heart, and it is to that love that I am going to appeal. Love works magic and wonders. It penetrates all barriers and subverts all opposition.
Love and I have formed a conspiracy. In the words of Edwin Markham, even if they treat me as they have treated my great predecessors — as an outcast — and flout me and the message that I bring, even though they call me heretic, rebel, and what not, nevertheless listen: This is what love and I have determined to do:
He drew a circle that left me out — heretic, rebel — a thing to flout.
But Love and I had the wit to win — we drew a circle that took him in.