Sunrise:Theosophic Perspectives, April/May 1998

Special Issue: Katherine Tingley: 1847-1929

A vow is an action rising like a star high above the level of the common deeds of life. It is a witness that the outer man has at that moment realized its union with the inner, and the purpose of its existence, registering a great resolve to become one with the Father in Heaven.
At that moment the radiant path of light is seen with the eye of pure vision, the disciple is reborn, the old life is left behind, he enters a new way. For a moment he feels the touch of a guiding hand ever stretched out to him from the inner chamber. For a moment his ear catches the harmonies of the soul.
All this and more is the experience of those who make this vow with their whole hearts, and as they constantly renew it, and constantly renew their endeavor, the harmonies come again and again, and the clear path is once more beheld.
They carry the inspiration into outer life, and energize with it their common duties, high and low: gain from it strength for self-sacrifice, and thus bringing the inner into the outer, pouring forth in deeds that wine of divine life of which they have learned to partake, they achieve, little by little, the harmony of perfect life. Each effort carves the path of the next, and in no long time one single moment's silence will bring forth to the disciple's aid the strength of his soul. — Katherine Tingley


"Prelude" by G. F. K.

"Katherine Tingley: A Biographical Sketch" by Grace F. Knoche

"Katherine Tingley Explains Her Work and Aims — An Interview" by Gertrude Stevenson

"A New Light among All: First Crusade Address" by Katherine Tingley

"A Few Facets of Katherine Tingley" by Raymond Rugland

"My First Meeting with H. P. Blavatsky's Teacher" by Katherine Tingley

"The School of Antiquity: Its Meaning, Purpose, and Scope" by J. H. Fussell

"The S.R.L.M.A." by Alan E. Donant

"A Personal Impact" by I. M. Oderberg

"The Raja-Yoga Schools of Point Loma" by Bernard Parsons

"Childhood Memories" by Ingrid Van Mater

"'Strong Enough to Stem the Tide'" by Monica Morris

"To the Awakening Woman" by Katherine Tingley

"A Mentor to Me" by Doreen N. Melbrod

"The New Way" by Nancy Coker

"Against Capital Punishment"

"Fashioning Your Tomorrows" by Katherine Tingley

"I Never Knew Katherine Tingley" by Eloise Hart

"Rebirth of the Mysteries" by W. T. S. Thackara

"The Teacher and Disciple of Old" by Herbert Coryn

"Discipline Precedes the Mysteries" by Kirby Van Mater

"Towards Permanent Peace" by Katherine Tingley

Direct Links to Photographs in this Issue

Katherine Tingley


After eighty years, Katherine Tingley was honored on the island of Visingso, Sweden. On May 20, 1993, a passenger boat plying the waters of Lake Vattern between Visingso and Granna was named M:me Tingley. For the launching notables on the island were present, musicians entertained while Rune Backlund, Member of Parliament, "told about the theosophists' fantastic Madame Tingley who introduced not only electricity to Visingso, but also art, music, literature, and theater."


Yet when Katherine Tingley came to Visingso in 1913 to hold her International Theosophical Peace Congress, she had rough sailing. While she had staunch support from theosophists of high standing and from many islanders, the clergy held a meeting on June 13 for people in neighboring congregations "interested in God's word and the Christian faith,'' and concluded with a "Resolution of Protest against the theosophists' plan to build 'a heathen school and cult'." A few days later, Katherine Tingley met the clergy's accusations of being heathens by saying that ``if it is heathen to live a pure, noble, temperate, and self-sacrificing life for humanity, then let it be heathen."

Undaunted, her International Theosophical Peace Congress was held on schedule from June 22-29, and was a grand success, attended by members and admirers from all over Sweden and abroad. A lengthy, well-researched article in the July 2, 1993, issue of Grenna Posten recognized that Katherine Tingley had left an indelible impress on the island. It is heartening that this honor was accorded one who gave unstintingly for humanity and for Visingso. — G.F.K.

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Sunrise Articles

Links to Photographs in this Issue:

H. P. Blavatsky

William Q. Judge

Katherine Tingley 1896 (profile)

Katherine Tingley 1896 (polka-dot dress)

Katherine Tingley in Darjeeling, India, 1896

Katherine Tingley, 1906

Katherine Tingley, 1920s

G. de Purucker's Sketch of Point Loma, drawn at Geneva, September 2, 1896

Laying the Cornerstone of the SRLMA, Point Loma, February 23, 1897

Raja-Yoga Academy and Temple of Peace, International Theosophical Headquarters, Point Loma, California

Academy Building, International Theosophical Headquarters, Point Loma, California

SRLMA Foundation Stones (stacked in two columns), Point Loma

Classroom at Point Loma, about 1900

Cuban Raja-Yoga Students at Egyptian Gate and Peace Tree, San Juan Hill, Cuba, 1910

Raja-Yoga Children at Point Loma, about 1928

Raja-Yoga Symphony Orchestra, Academy Rotunda, 1912

First Open-air Greek Theater in America, Point Loma, California, built in 1901

A Midsummer Night's Dream, (fairies with Bottom), Greek Theater, Point Loma, 1919

A Midsummer Night's Dream (child dressed as cobweb)

"The Eumenides" Finale, Katherine Tingley's production, Greek Theater, Point Loma, 1922

Detail from R. Machell's "The Path" painting

Author Talbot Mundy's inscription to Katherine Tingley in her copy of Om: The Secret of Ahbor Valley (1924)

International Theosophical Peace Congress, Visingso, Sweden, June 1913

Raja-Yoga College Band, Peace Parade, Balboa Park, September 28, 1914

Raja-Yoga Chorus, Peace Parade, San Diego, September 28, 1914

Parliament of Peace Committee, Temple of Peace, Point Loma, 1923 (names given)

Katherine Tingley and party with Arizona Governor George P. Hunt, who abolished capital punishment in his state.