Alice Bailey and her Christianised Pseudo-Theosophy

Alice Bailey and Theosophy

The following first appeared in “Theosophical Notes” for September 1963. It was written by the American Theosophist Victor Endersby as part of his “A Study of the Arcane School of Alice A. Bailey.”

We are well aware that the majority of students of the Alice Bailey teachings will not even bother to read it if they happen to have come across it and that even those who do read it will in most cases not be able to appreciate or comprehend the great significance of many of the things mentioned, as their understanding and knowledge of H.P. Blavatsky, the Theosophical Movement, what Theosophy actually is, and the true nature and teachings of the Masters, has been so severely warped and distorted as a result of their blindly believing Bailey’s manifold statements and assertions on these issues, without bothering to investigate the facts for themselves.

But if only one or two people can be rescued from the very clever yet very deceptive sham that is the Alice Bailey movement, then it will have been worthwhile putting this online.

We also recommend an impartial examination of other articles on this website, such as those listed under the headings “PSEUDO-THEOSOPHY/NEO-THEOSOPHY,” “THE MASTERS,” and “H. P. BLAVATSKY AND THEOSOPHY” on the Articles page.

We have taken the liberty of putting a number of statements and sentences in bold, in order to emphasise their great relevance and importance, including the distinctly Christian and anti-Theosophical nature of the passages quoted from Bailey’s writings.

One Theosophical writer summed Bailey up as being “a deluded Christian writing for deluded Christians.” This is perhaps a bit of a generalisation but ultimately it is true that the love and devotion of many Bailey followers for a personal Christ, a personal or semi-personal God, and Christian or Christian-esque spirituality will always result in them dismissing such information as this, as they literally cannot accept even the possibility that the Masters would not support or approve of such views and beliefs. To use HPB’s words from the preface to “The Key to Theosophy,” they “prefer to believe what is pleasant rather than what is true, and become very angry with anyone who destroys an agreeable delusion.”

Although they would be the first to deny it, they are living examples of the sort of blind belief, self-brainwashing, and unphilosophical religious anthropomorphism that the Theosophical Movement was founded to do away with.

~ * ~


By Victor Endersby

“THE REAPPEARANCE OF THE CHRIST” – This book by Mrs. Bailey was first published in 1948 and reprinted three times later, the last being in 1962. We could write a number of comments on every page of the 190, but will have to content ourselves with a few samples. In general the gross anthropomorphism becomes more and more evident; the evolution [of her writings] since the ’20’s is tending more and more toward a kind of materialistic pseudo-Christianity of a sort which even the churches are outgrowing.

Note the pretentious claims of intimate personal knowledge indicated by the Table of Contents.

Chapter I
The Doctrine of the Coming One ………. 5
Chapter II
Christ’s Unique Occasion ….. 15
Chapter III
The Reappearance of the Christ ….. 36
Chapter IV
The Work of the Christ ……. 61
Chapter V
The Teachings of the Christ ……… 102
Chapter VI
The New World Religion ……… 137
Chapter VII
Preparation for the Christ ……. 160

p. 5. “When men feel that they have exhausted all their own resources and have come to an end of all their own innate possibilities and that the problems and conditions confronting them are beyond their solving or handling, they are apt to look for a divine Intermediary and for the Mediator Who will plead their cause with God and bring about a rescue. They look for a Saviour. This doctrine of Mediators, of Messiahs, of Christs and of Avatars can be found running like a golden thread through all the world faiths and Scriptures and relating these world Scriptures to some central source of emanation, they are found in rich abundance everywhere. Even the human soul is regarded as an intermediary between man and God; Christ is believed by countless millions to act as the divine mediator between humanity and divinity.

“The whole system of spiritual revelation is based (and has always been based) on this doctrine of interdependence, of a planned and arranged conscious linking and of the transmission of energy from one aspect of divine manifestation to another – from God in the ‘secret Place of the Most High’ to the humblest human being, living and struggling and sorrowing on earth. Everywhere this transmission is to be found;

“’I am come that they may have life’ says the Christ, and the Scriptures of the world are full of the intervention of some Being, originating from some source higher than the strictly human. Always the appropriate mechanism is found through which divinity can reach and communicate with humanity, and it is with this communication and these Instruments of divine energy that the doctrine of Avatars or of divine ‘Coming Ones’ has to do.”

The “Great Heresy” as it is held to be by all true esoteric philosophy! – a transmission from God (Capital He) to man, the great external to the little internal; from the Creator to the Creature! The same old separation, the same loss of the Oneness of all life and spirit of the Universe, the same helpless dependence upon a boon from on high, to be administered as always by a board of “Servers”, intermediaries and interpreters!

It goes on –

“An Avatar is one Who has a peculiar capacity (besides a self-initiated task and a pre-ordained destiny) to transmit energy or divine power. This is necessarily a deep mystery and was demonstrated in a peculiar manner and in relation to cosmic energy by the Christ Who – for the first time in planetary history, as far as we know – transmitted the divine energy of love directly to our planet and in a most definite sense to humanity. Always too these Avatars or divine Messengers are linked with the concept of some subjective spiritual Order or Hierarchy of spiritual Lives, Who are concerned with the developing welfare of humanity. All we really know is that, down the ages, great and divine Representatives of God embody divine purpose, and affect the entire world in such a manner that Their names and Their influence are known and felt thousands of years after They no longer walk among men. Again and again, They have come and have left a changed world and some new worldreligion behind Them; we know also that prophecy and faith have ever held out to mankind the promise of Their coming again amongst us in an hour of need. These statements are statements of fact, historically proven. Beyond this we know relatively few details.”

More of the same – and this time, of course, Jesus the Christ is the one who alone in the course of the planetary history has transmitted the divine energy of love to our planet. There is no mistaking this. This is a personal God with a personal representative and a unique mission from and to. No Catholic or other priest could go farther and make it clearer. We even have here the Vicarious Atonement in the form of something mystic which can be transmitted only by unique beings. No recognition whatever of karma, of the teaching inherent in all law, that all the powers are potential in man himself and must be developed by himself, without outer aid other than teaching and example. Where does the Buddha stand in this, please?

Further. . . “All the world Avatars or Saviors, however, express two basic incentives: the need of God to contact humanity and to have relationship with men and the need of humanity for divine contact, help and understanding. Subject to those incentives, all true Avatars are therefore divine Intermediaries. They can act in this fashion because They have completely divorced Themselves from every limitation, from all sense of selfhood and separativeness and are no longer – by ordinary human standards – the dramatic centre of Their lives, as are most of us. When They have reached that stage of spiritual decentralization, They Themselves can then become events in the life of our planet; toward Them every eye can look and all men can be affected.”

The need of “God” to “contact” humanity! Then note the subtle welding of truth with falsehood; the true Avatar is described – aside from the capitalized pronoun which none of them ever claimed – rather correctly; thus the infiltrating proponent of the Arcane School can point out that it “teaches the same thing” as Theosophy. This slyness is evident throughout.

Then, the “relatively few details” are gone into in great detail and with apparent intimate knowledge of the inmost workings of the soul of “the Christ”.

p.10. She then almost equates the Buddha with the Christ. “The Avatars most easily known and recognized are the Buddha in the East and the Christ in the West. Their messages are familiar to all, and the fruits of Their lives and words have conditioned the thinking and civilizations of both hemispheres. Because They are human-divine Avatars, They represent what humanity can easily understand; because they are of like nature to Us, ‘flesh of our flesh and spirit of our spirit,’ we know and trust Them and They mean more to us than other divine Emergences. They are known, trusted and loved by countless millions”.

p.11. But not quite – “The Christ, that great human-divine Messenger, because of His stupendous achievement – along the line of understanding – transmitted to humanity an aspect and a potency of the nature of God Himself, the love Principle of Deity. Light, aspiration, and the recognition of God Transcendent had been the flickering expression of the human attitude to God, prior to the advent of the Buddha, the Avatar of Illumination. Then the Buddha came and demonstrated in His Own life the fact of God Immanent as well as God Transcendent, of God in the universe and of God within humanity. The Selfhood of Deity and the Self in the heart of individual man became a factor in human consciousness. It was a relatively new truth to man.

“However, until Christ came and lived a life of love and service and gave men the new command to love one another, there had been very little emphasis upon God as Love in any of the world Scriptures. After he had come as the Avatar of love, then God became known as love supernal, love as the goal and objective of creation, love as the basic principle of relationship and love as working throughout all manifestation towards a Plan motivated by love. This divine quality, Christ revealed and emphasized and thus altered all human living, goals and values.” [Note: The extraordinary and deceptive Christian bias is almost overwhelming in this paragraph!]

Thus is the reverence of Theosophists for the Buddha placated while Christian prejudice in favor of the Christ as the One is also appealed to. The Buddha becomes the junior Avatar, a sort of fore-runner teaching a partial doctrine. We don’t know of a greater exhibition of combined disdain for the teachings of the Mahatmas and dismal ignorance of what the Buddha really taught and what his effect upon mankind was. It is all well for Christians who are carefully guarded by their shepherd from the historical truth about the religions, to be ignorant about the Buddha and Buddhism. But it does not even require Theosophy to tell the true relationship. Word for Word the ethical teachings of the Buddha are the same as those of the Christ, minus any of the destruction to the unbeliever which has been inserted even into the Testament; more comprehensively and philosophically expressed, and expressed five hundred years previously.

Then there are the innumerable legendary details of the Buddha found in Mahayana Buddhism, correctly though poetically expressed in The Light of Asia, even to the Virgin Birth! Surely the origin of Christianity as a compound of Buddhism, Mithraism, Platonism and a few other things is evident enough even to secular scholars, let alone to accredited agents of the Mahatmas!

But as to these Mahatmas – the payoff comes on p.15 – “The world to which He will come is a new world, if not yet a better world; new ideas are occupying people’s minds and new problems await solution. Let us look at this uniqueness and gain some knowledge of the situation into which the Christ will be precipitated. Let us be realistic in our approach to this theme and avoid mystical and vague thinking. If it is true that He plans to reappear, if it is a fact that He will bring His disciples, the Masters of the Wisdom, with Him, and if this coming is imminent, what are some of the factors which he and they must take into consideration.”

So here we have it. The Mahatmas are Christ’s disciples. What an unholy wedding of utterly opposed systems! And when is this to be?

“It is not for us yet to know the date or the hour of the reappearance of the Christ. His coming is dependent upon the appeal (the often voiceless appeal) of all who stand with massed intent; it is dependent also upon the better establishment of right human relations and upon certain work being done at this time by senior Members of the Kingdom of God, the Church Invisible, the spiritual Hierarchy of our planet; it is dependent also upon the steadfastness of the Christ’s disciples in the world at this time and His initiate-workers – all working in the many groups, religious, political and economic. To the above must be added what Christians like to call ‘the inscrutable Will of God’, that unrecognized purpose of the Lord of the World, the Ancient of Days (as He is called in The Old Testament) Who knows His own Mind, radiates the highest quality of love and focuses His Will in His Own High Place within the centre where the Will of God is known.”

This is very wise indeed; warned perhaps by some study of the sad fate of previous prophesied “Avatars” rashly dated too closely, (including that of Mr. Krishnamurti, who decided at the last moment that he didn’t wish to be Jesus) Mrs. Bailey backs up on her previous dating of 1980. This leaves the field open. The “Avatar” can come when, as, and if some suitable personage able to play the part plausibly, turns up, and the Servers – and the “Served” – can be strung along indefinitely otherwise. But we doubt that it can go on for the millions of years necessary for the real Maitreya Buddha.

Even faith in Mrs. Bailey’s “Tibetan”, fervent as it obviously is, could then become over-strained. Anyway, in case of undue delay, she has a scapegoat ready; in fact she has two, one behind the other. The reason why the Christ has not reappeared already is the failure of the churches to live up to their obligations. But this hour is now come. (Followed in the next sentence by the above quoted remark that we do not yet know the date or hour.) The other scapegoat – come to think of it, there are three – the other two are the public which may fail to put up sufficient cash to insure the coming, and impliedly; the “elect” who may fail to seize the opportunity of joining the “Servers”; or having joined, may fail to be sufficiently diligent and cash-worthy in the raising of funds and propagating the faith.

There seems a quite childlike incomprehension of public reactions among these people; the combination of a “Second Coming” with all this emphasis on money – in one publication Mrs. Bailey pleaded for at least $30,000 to insure the “Great Event” – necessarily gives the impression of arrant fraud to the average citizen. But these people themselves, though no doubt like most other money-raising groups involving a grafter or two, do seem to be honest hard-core fanatics. There probably lies the most serious public danger. The Fascists, Nazis, and the Birchers, all show the explosive dangers resident in any pseudo-mystical power-hungry group imbued with this sort of emotional fervor.

p. 16. Here we find a bit of professional jealousy…. “Even if there is no general recognition of His spiritual status and His message, there must necessarily be an universal interest, for today even the many false Christs and Messengers are finding this universal curiosity and cannot be hidden. This creates an unique condition in which to work, and one which no salvaging, energizing Son of God has ever before had to face.”

Well, while legally quotation is almost unlimited in a refutation, it can also get very boring when the repetition is unlimited also; we will briefly skim through a few other points, since the general anatomy should be clear enough.

We learn that while the churches will be an important agency, the Christ will also use any other channel which may be handy.

And here is another quote not to be missed. It is the biggest and reddest danger signal of a theocratic nature that we have ever seen: …. “The common people are today awakening to the importance and responsibility of government; it is, therefore, realised by the Hierarchy that before the cycle of true democracy (as it essentially exists and will eventually demonstrate), can come into being, the education of the masses in cooperative statesmanship, in economic stabilization through right sharing, and in clean, political interplay is imperatively necessary. The long divorce between religion and politics must be ended and this can now come about because of the high level of the human mass intelligence and the fact that science has made all men so close that what happens in some remote area of the earth’s surface is a matter of general interest within a few minutes. This makes it uniquely possible for Him to work in the future.”

To end the divorce between religion and politics – which “divorce”, engineered by the Founders of our Republic, was the first great liberation of the human soul from religious tyranny since the Buddha – is precisely what the Catholic Hierarchy continuously strives for. As to what happens whenever the divorce is cancelled or non-existent, let us look at Latin America and Spain; and at South Vietnam, where a Buddhist priest found it necessary to burn himself to death to call the attention of the world to the oppression of eight million Buddhists by two million Catholics.

Nobody knows what race or religion the Christ will appear in, or whether in any religion. Thank heavens for at least this confession of ignorance.

A factor which will distinguish the Coming is that people everywhere are now habituated to the idea of the Masters of Wisdom, etc. For this she credits “the occultists and esotericists”, and also the spiritualists, all of whom are working together under direction and with their forces closely synchronized. (That “Hierarchical” business-like efficiency again.) No word of Theosophy, of Madame Blavatsky who used up the fires of prejudice in her own burning, to the extent that such as Mrs. Bailey could hold forth with impunity.

Although we don’t know when he will come or what he will be like, “the unique conditions which the Christ faced during the years of war forced Him to decide to hasten His coming.” He was, it seems, faced with a decision which he could not avoid. This is very interesting. Nothing about the wars of this century – not even atomic energy – was any surprise to real students of Madame Blavatsky’s Secret Doctrine. She must then have been in on something unforeseen by Christ himself.

Wonder of wonders, we find that it was in the year 1945 that the Christ made the painful decision to come again; and at that time gave to the world the oldest prayer known, hitherto not permitted to be used except by the most exalted beings. It may eventually, says Mrs. Bailey, become the world prayer. And guess what? It is that ineffable doggerel with which the “World Goodwill” announcement is terminated.

She actually spends pages on the great potency and power of this preposterous prayer, claiming that after 18 months (1947) hundreds of thousands of people were using it day by day and many times a day; that it is used in 18 different languages; it is being used in the jungles of Africa and is seen on the desks of great executives, and there is no country or island in the world where its use is unknown. It can, she says, be to the new world religion what the Lord’s Prayer has been to Christians and the 23rd Psalm to the Jews. There is, it seems, not a day when Christ himself “does not sound it forth.” We will need a lot of convincing about all this! Somehow all this tremendous accomplishment seems to be strangely missing from any journalistic records but those of Bailey.

And here, God help us, we are still only at the 35th page of this farrago. The construction of this book throws some light on how Mrs. Bailey managed such a large “literary output”. It takes a minimum of mental effort to write the same thing over and over and over. Anyone who can read this all through in detail must have a masochistic passion for boredom, or be moved by a grim sense of duty. (The latter is our misfortune.) The repetitive fascination with an obsessing idea is rather characteristic of psychic states isolated from the real world. Each time Mrs. Bailey repeats herself, she seems to feel that it is a new theme.

For some curious reason, Mrs. Bailey does better on the symbolism of the Bible than on other subjects; this seems to lend credence to the Cleather-Crump contention that some concealed ecclesiastic influence is behind it. It does not seem on the usual Bailey level of intelligence; and there is only one body of ecclesiastics whose leading lights are likely to be really learned in such matters. [Note: This is referring to the Jesuits.]

She cites a legend that the Buddha, on contemplating his mission, left behind him certain “vestures” of a metaphysical nature, to be used by others. We know where she got that. It was from no Tibetan – unless you call H.P.B. a Tibetan. It is from MSS left unpublished by her, later published by Besant and Mead in the falsely titled “Third Volume” of the Secret Doctrine.

But there is a typical Bailey twist to it. The “vestures”, of course, were left for the use of “the Christ”, whose reappearance will thus be a sort of compound of himself and what is left of the Buddha. Naturally, she does not mention H.P.B. in connection with this legend. The nearest she comes to mentioning her is in the general reference to the “occultists and esotericists”, who are coupled with the Spiritualists on the same level; and a remark that the existence of the Mahatmas was first made known to the world in 1875. By whom, she does not say.

There is quite a bit about the difficulties to be encountered by the Christ in announcing himself; the gem in this is “If he preached and taught, He would attract primarily those who think in unison with His message, or the gullible and the credulous would flock to Him, as they do to all new teachers – no matter what they teach.” (Italics ours.)

The handling of reincarnation is most interesting. Beginning with a quite competent general presentation, she pays respects to the Theosophical teachings as follows: “The presentation to the world of thought by the average occult or theosophical exponent has been, on the whole, deplorable. It has been deplorable because it has been so unintelligently presented.” Well, we can’t quarrel too much with that.

The following is a curious mixture of a deep fact and a failure to grasp its true relationship:

“It should be remembered that practically all the occult groups and writings have foolishly laid the emphasis upon past incarnations and upon their recovery; this recovery is incapable of any reasonable checking – anyone can say and claim anything they like; the teaching has been laid upon imaginary rules, supposed to govern the time equation and the interval between lives, forgetting that time is a faculty of the brain-consciousness and that divorced from the brain, time is non-existent; the emphasis has always been laid upon a fictional presentation of relationships. The teaching (hitherto given out on reincarnation) has done more harm than good. Only one factor remains of value: the existence of a Law of Rebirth is now discussed by many and accepted by thousands.

Beyond the fact that there is such a law, we know little and those who know from experience the factual nature of this return reject earnestly the foolish and improbable details, given out as fact by the theosophical and occult bodies. The Law exists; of the details of its working we know as yet nothing.[Note: And this confession of total ignorance regarding the working of the Law of Rebirth is purportedly made by the Tibetan Master Djwhal Khul, one of the Adepts of the Great Brotherhood, as Bailey attributed the true authorship of “The Reappearance of the Christ” to him! From what they themselves have written, we can see that the real Masters do not claim to “know little” or to “know as yet nothing” about it, but just the opposite.]

Now the curious thing is that time as a function of the lower consciousness is one of the most fundamental and frequently adduced tenets of Theosophists; it is definitely stated over and over that time as we know it does not exist in the Bardo between incarnations – for the subject himself; and also that time itself as a cosmic matter is an illusion. (A tenet practically accepted scientifically since Einstein.) What Mrs. Bailey misses so egregiously and irrationally is that on our plane of physical consciousness the illusion of time is a governing fact that we have to meet.

A man dies and vanishes from sight. He returns, and there is an interval of what we call “time” between for us, but not for him. He has enjoyed himself in dreams for centuries, but never thought of time in connection with it; to him it was an ever-present now. A man sleeps, and goes into the dreamless state. He wakes without consciousness of time having passed. But he has to recognize the existence of his passage on our plane, or he is not going to get to the job on time. If he does not get to the job on time, he is likely to stop eating. This, we think, should be a practical enough proposition to appeal to Mrs. Bailey, who is constantly harping on the “practicality” of the “Hierarchy.”

Then she straightway continues with the remark, that only a few things can be said with accuracy about reincarnation and these warrant no contradiction. These few things turn out to be thirteen propositions which could have been taken from Judge’s Aphorisms on Karma or any one of a few dozen other Theosophical textbooks, except that the “Kingdom of God” is used for the state of final liberation. (Which is what the phrase actually means in the Biblical symbolism).

The last chapter, “Preparation for the Christ” is largely devoted to money and the manipulation of money, finance, and economics – the material aspects of which seem to obsess this cult. (The obsession is especially evident in Foster Bailey’s Changing Esoteric Values.)

“THE BAILEY CAREER” – What we may consider an “official” version of Mrs. Bailey’s life appears in the afore-mentioned article in Fate for June 1963, by Paul M. Vest, an ardent devotee, and printed in a manner equivalent to an endorsement by Fate.

From the context the most important matters in her life in this connection rest solely on her own narrative. Here, incidentally, we have the interesting revelation, not apparent in the previous material, that the “World Servers” have no organization on the physical plane but consist of spiritually liberated people from all countries working on the “astral plane.” The article, entitled “Alice Bailey and the Master K.H.” is suitably decorated with a portrait of the Mahatma M. Evidently Mr. Vest doesn’t know the difference and perhaps Mrs. Bailey didn’t either.

According to this narrative, this movement began when Mrs. Bailey, nee Trobe-Bateman, married Foster Bailey, then National Secretary to the T.S., in 1919.

She was brought up as a strict Anglican, loved Holy Communion but couldn’t take the more narrow dogmas. Her religious devotion, it is stated, went to attending church every day for weeks or months at a time. (This sort of emotional and devotional youthful affinity could be predicted to have just such results as we have been discussing.)

It was in the midst of this struggle that the “Master” appeared, in the form of a well-tailored Oriental who entered unannounced, and seating himself “with quiet dignity” – uninvited – began to explain her future mission for the Mahatmas. She thought at first that she might be insane, but after thinking it all over began to conceive of herself as a modern Joan of Arc. This youthful and colorful self-dramatization, she says, in time wore off. (It wore off into something much bigger; the sainted Joan never claimed intimate personal acquaintance with the problems of Jesus, or the status of the sole agent through whom he might be able to return to earth.) Mrs. Bailey says she at first thought that the mysterious visitor might be Jesus, but did not know his real identity as K.H. until she saw his picture in the Theosophical headquarters. (This picture of M. which is printed with the article?) Fate volunteers a footnote to the effect that “his visage as well as his name is remarkably well known.” Evidently not very well known to Fate.

Each time, it is said, that the Master visited her, he gave her evidence in some way of his “extra-dimensional” nature. (Gad, how tired we get of that trite phrase of spiritualistic ignorance, “extra-dimensional” or “other-dimensional!”)

The famous Djwual Khul started her on her literary career, as a voice in the air. She states that all her writing consisted of taking down the thoughts dropped one by one into her brain, and that automatic writing has nothing to do with it. She is alleged to have been quite a
puzzle to the psychologists, including Jung, who thought it might all be from her subconscious mind, but was puzzled by some of the features. She, it is said, was amused by the scientific speculations, because she could show visitors gifts mailed to her by K.H. from India. (Did she show them the wrappings and postmarks?)

Now we have here something, the explanation of which can proceed along two branches. First of all, the subconscious. One thing this writer does know, and that is the nature of psychics of this type; and some of his knowledge has been painfully acquired.

It is a breed with which the differentiations between fact and fancy simply disappear. Their minds have come unanchored. There is no criterion of reality; their memories are ever shifting sands in which real happenings are drifted over by winds or daydreams, emotional vicissitudes, and pseudo-memories resulting from wishful thinking, though these are quite often centered on some principal fixed idea. Psychiatrists have quite a time with them. They are quite capable of imagining a visit such as that of “K.H.,” and of coming up later with a “Djwual Khul” – after learning both these names through Theosophical associations – to continue the internal drama; and the whole mess which she made of esoteric philosophy is perfectly in line with an attempted subconscious fusion of her early pathological, religious fervor and her interest in the new ideas furnished by Theosophical literature.

Such people are known to write themselves letters from imagined lovers or great personages, and there is nothing to prevent one of them with an Oriental complex from doing the same thing with “gifts from India.” (Are her followers willing to subject these “gifts” and other manifestations to the same critical sort of scrutiny to which the Theosophists willingly submitted H.P.B.’s Adyar phenomena?) The Editor of Fate twice takes occasion in notes on this article to remind readers that H.P.B. was found guilty of fraud in these matters. Elsewhere we are exposing, in spades, the “competence” as well as the honesty of Hodgson in that frame-up.

There is a gulf as wide as the world between the presentation by H.P.B. and that of Bailey, in the matter of mode alone. H.P.B.’s was accompanied by voluminous evidence from many sources, the strongest of which lies in the field of material science. Nothing of this appears in the Bailey output; that field might as well never have existed so far as she is concerned. We repeat what Cleather and Crump said – the entire structure rests on her ipse dixit alone.

One thing is certain: whatever her “K.H.” and “Djwual Khul” may have been, they were not the mentors of H.P.B. That much is as surely proven by the texts as anything could be. If not her own subconscious, then what were they? Let us then examine the implications made by Cleather and Crump, which suggest the agency of the “dugpas”, “redcaps”, “Shammars”, “Brothers of the Shadow”, “Black Lodge”, etc., etc., all names for the same thing – the Mahatmas’ opposite numbers.

This is the teaching that there is a black or evil line of occultism as well as a white and benevolent, and it is a very hot potato to handle. Theosophists are about equally divided between those who don’t really believe it and those who believe it too much – and talk too blooming much about it, especially when hinting that some opposed school of thought in their own ranks is under the “influence”.

Of course the tenet belongs to what any official psychologist would call the “paranoid” conception of things; and certainly the woods are full of people who fancy themselves persecuted by invisible evil beings. (Most of these people are of such personal caliber that it is quite a puzzle why anyone visible or invisible would take the trouble to persecute them at all and they are usually pretty vague as to why it is being done.)

But let us examine it rationally. The possibility is inherent in the existence of paranormal powers, and belief in such powers is becoming quite respectable these days. There is no divine ordinance to the effect that only benevolent beings can obtain such powers, any more than there is one forbidding evil people from developing atomic energy. Hence nobody, whether Theosophist, Baileyite, or outside investigator of the psychic who is convinced that there are such powers at all can logically deny the proposition outright. Moreover, there is a sprinkle of non-occult writers of quite respectable caliber who claim to have witnessed manifestations of such powers in Africa, Haiti, and for that matter, Tibet and India.

Hence Madame Blavatsky and the Mahatma Letters have pretty substantial logical support in describing the machinations of these characters in considerable detail. Of course, this is pretty strong stuff. We have actually observed individuals, upon first introduction to the idea, badly shaken and actually frightened by it. Hence part of the reticence about it in some quarters.

What sort of powers? The ones which come into the question here are of telepathic suggestion and even telepathic hypnosis. Telepathy is now a respectable subject and so is hypnosis. The combination is even beginning to be discussed as a possibility outside the occult ranks.

Granted the possibility, we have a serious issue to face. According to H.P.B. – and the Mahatmas – these people work mainly through religion and religious superstitions, the obvious and logical reason for this being that mankind is most easily controlled by these means. Every dogmatic, authoritarian religion, she says, is the degeneration of a former impulse of the true philosophy; this philosophy, which is the emancipation of the mind of man from all subservience to the supernatural, means death to the dugpa cause wherever it is successful. Hence, aided by the inevitable tendency of the human mind to degrade, materialize and degenerate to personal ends any supremely high teaching, the dugpas work as strenuously to abort and frustrate all such movements as the Mahatmas work to promote them.

Therefore we have here a suggestion alternative to that of the subconscious, of equal logic and in some ways more evidential; because there is a dichotomy in Alice Bailey’s writings. In parts of them appear the psychic, hysterical young girl who never quite grew up, and who could be expected to see something wonderful even in the emotional doggerel of that “prayer”. In others, there are flashes of real knowledge, of extreme cunning of a different order.

One finds a parallel in the writings of H.P.B., where the natural output of the Blavatsky mind – a whole cycle of intelligence beyond that of Bailey – is mixed with things which the temperamental Russian could not possibly have known of herself; and this is supported by the last message of the Mahatmas regarding The Secret Doctrine which states that the book is in part her own product and in part theirs, and that as time goes on it will be increasingly necessary to distinguish between the two categories. Of course the direction and trend of the Mahatma teaching is directly the opposite of that of the Bailey “Master’s”, just as the direction of the Blavatsky mind is the opposite of the Bailey mind; but the corresponding dichotomy is there. In other words, whether through subconscious cerebration or the direction of opposing occult forces, Bailey and Blavatsky are “opposite numbers”. They represent opposite influences on humanity, and these influences cannot both be good. This issue seems inescapable, whichever theory of the motivations you favor.

If we suppose the “dugpa” thesis, then it would be quite in line for that apparent physical visit of the “Mahatma” to have been the result of a hypnotic suggestion by telepathy; possibly preceded by some physical contact; or it could have been a physical visit by a masquerader, during which she was hypnotically “conditioned” to hear the “voice” of “Djwual Khul” and his teachings later. Once under control anything could happen, a hypnotic subject can be made to believe anything can happen or has happened.

The conditions under which the voice of “DK” was heard are most significant. A subject is approachable only through some weakness; pride and vanity are listed as the two greatest obstacles and the “last citadel” of the personality to fall before spiritual liberation is obtained.

And what else than overweening vanity could have caused this woman of such mediocre mind to get the idea that she was the chosen agent of Christ himself? Moreover, consider the external situation. This was in 1923, [Note: actually 1919] when the Messianic craze under Besant and Leadbeater was building up to a frenzy in terms which still make many an older Theosophist wince when he reads them now in cold blood. And poor Alice Bailey was being neglected. An order of chosen disciples for the then imminent “Coming of the Avatar”, was being built up along the same lines as the “World Servers”, and Mrs. Bailey was somehow being left out of the mainstream, in spite of her enthusiastic services to the Society. (Her followers complain that things would have been different if she had been properly appreciated.) Hence the voice of “Djwual Khul’ must have fallen from the sky like manna from heaven. She was now all on her own, with her own “Coming Christ”; presented with a greater mission than that of H.P.B., and one which wonderfully reconciled her childhood devotion to the ideal of Christ and her later discovered affinity for the occult. A fig for the Society and its ingratitude!

H.P.B. warned that the danger is never greater than when vanity and wounded pride dress themselves up in the peacock feathers of altruism. This has usually been applied to another personage, but it seems to fit here.

“GOD AND PRAYER” – Mrs. Bailey makes a huge thing of that nursery school “Invocation.” It is evident that “prayer” is a major heritage of her childhood conditioning. Well, let us look at this. H.P.B.’s Key to Theosophy says –

“Is It Necessary to Pray?

Enq. Do you believe in prayer, and do you ever pray?

Theo. We do not. We act, instead of talking.

Enq. You do not offer prayers even to the Absolute Principle?

Theo. Why should we? Being well-occupied people, we can hardly afford to lose time in addressing verbal prayers to a pure abstraction. The Unknowable is capable of relations only in its parts to each other, but is non-existent as regards any finite relations. The visible universe depends for its existence and phenomena on its mutually acting forms and their laws, not on prayer or prayers.

Enq. Do you not believe at all in the efficacy of prayer?

Theo. Not in prayer taught in so many words and repeated externally, if by prayer you mean the outward petition to an unknown God as the addressee, which was inaugurated by the Jews and popularized by the Pharisees.

Enq. Is there any other kind of prayer?

Theo. Most decidedly; we call it WILL-PRAYER, and it is rather an internal command than a petition.

Enq. To whom, then, do you pray when you do so?

Theo. To “our Father in heaven” – in its esoteric meaning.

Enq. Is that different from the one given to it in Theology?

Theo. Entirely so. An Occultist or a Theosophist addresses his prayer to his Father which is in secret (read, and try to understand, ch. vi., v. 6, Matthew), not to an extra-cosmic and therefore finite God; and that ‘Father’ is in man himself.

Enq. Then you make of man a God?

Theo. Please say “God” and not a God. In our sense, the inner man is the only God we can have cognizance of. And how can this be otherwise? Grant us our postulate that God is a universally diffused, infinite principle, and how can man alone escape from being soaked through by, and in, the Deity? We call our “Father in heaven” that deific essence of which we are cognizant within us, in our heart and spiritual consciousness, and which has nothing to do with the anthropomorphic conception we may form of it in our physical brain or its fancy: ‘Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the spirit of (the absolute) God dwelleth in you?’ Yet, let no man anthropomorphize that essence in us. Let no Theosophist, if he would hold to divine, not human truth, say that this “God in Secret” listens to, or is distinct from, either finite man or the infinite essence – for all are one. Nor, as just remarked, that a prayer is a petition. It is a mystery rather; an occult process by which finite and conditioned thoughts and desires, unable to be assimilated by the absolute spirit which is unconditioned, are translated into spiritual wills and the will; such process being called “spiritual transmutation.” The intensity of our ardent aspirations changes prayer into the “philosopher’s stone,” or that which transmutes lead into pure gold. The only homogeneous essence, our “will-prayer” becomes the active or creative force, producing effects according to cur desire.

Enq. Do you mean to say that prayer is an occult process bringing about physical results?

Theo. I do. Will-Power becomes a living power. But woe unto those occultists and Theosophists, who, instead of crushing out the desires of the lower personal ego or physical man, and saying, addressing their Higher Spiritual EGO immersed in Atma-Buddhic light, “Thy will be done not mine”, etc., send up waves of will-power for selfish or unholy purposes. For this is black magic, abomination, and spiritual sorcery. Unfortunately, all this is the favourite occupation of our Christian statesmen and generals, especially when the latter are sending two armies to murder each other. Both indulge before action in a bit of such sorcery, by offering respectively prayers to the same God of Hosts, each entreating his help to cut its enemies’ throats.”

Prayer in any other sense than the aspiration of the personal self for union with its higher, inner self of necessity creates separateness from that to which the prayer is addressed. It is something from and to, and these words apply only to separate entities. What the habit of prayer does, therefore is to set up and continually reinforce the mental concept of something external and imaginary, and to block off all possible integration of the personality with its inner self. Since the personality as such is non-viable, perishable except in such union, the tendency is toward ultimate oblivion. Meantime the habit also produces a vitiating weakness and dependency. People boast of “strength through prayer.” Such strength is no more the man’s own strength than is the uplift of whiskey an attribute of the drunkard’s own will. Should the prayerful man lose his faith he becomes a shattered wreck. Where then was any power of his own? Why should men be proud of being automata; empty shells filled with an outside force, alien and unearned?

Islam forbids images of Deity and for good reason. The great struggle of man is to escape the illusionary world of form, into the arupa planes of reality and conscious union with universal spirit. Escape is impossible for a mind clogged by the idea that the Ultimate itself has form, body, parts, attributes and hence limitations. Graven images are no worse than mental images, perhaps not as bad. Moreover, the existence of such images in the mind form focal points of attraction for certain forms of life, the “Star Rishis”,”Rupa Devas”, or “Mirror Devas” as they are variously called. The last term is due to their capacity to assume, in the psychic field of perception, the mirrored subconscious images in the minds of worshipers, and reflect back as
from the exterior these images, whether visual or verbal.

Hence the visions of saints and angels and Christs – and “Djwual Khuls”. Of all this the Mahatma said, in the “Prayag Message” – …. “They may have had influences around them, bad magnetic emanations the result of drink, Society and promiscuous physical associations (resulting even from shaking hands with impure men) but all this is physical and material impediments which with a little effort we could counteract or even clear away without much detriment to ourselves. Not so with the magnetism and invisible results proceeding from erroneous and sincere beliefs. Faith in the Gods and God, and other superstitions attracts millions of foreign influences, living entities and powerful agents around them, with which we would have to use more than ordinary exercise of power to drive them away. We do not choose to do so. We do not find it either necessary or profitable to lose our time waging war to the unprogressed Planetaries who delight in personating gods and sometimes well known characters who have lived on earth.

Elsewhere H.P.B. said “Those who fall off from our living human Mahatmas into the path of the Star Rishis are NO THEOSOPHISTS.”

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We notice only one error in Victor Endersby’s article, namely that he seems not to have realised that in the Alice Bailey teachings there is a distinction between Christ and Jesus. They are not viewed as being one and the same entity but it is maintained that Christ overshadowed and worked and taught through Jesus during the three years of the latter’s public ministry. The Bailey teachings say that Christ is the Bodhisattva Maitreya, a doctrine which was invented by C. W. Leadbeater in 1909. Due to her religious preference for the name “Christ” over “Maitreya,” many of her books refer to him only as Christ, hence making it easy for such misunderstandings as Endersby’s.

This is not “Ageless Wisdom” as Bailey claimed, nor is it any legitimate form of Theosophy. It is Leadbeaterosophy and little more.

In Bailey’s “A Treatise on Cosmic Fire” – which she insinuated superseded and replaced H.P. Blavatsky’s “The Secret Doctrine” – the reader is informed that before the “Lord Christ” makes his appearance as the World Teacher, the “Master Jesus” will also return, as he is preparing to go to Rome to become the new Pope and usher in a glorious new era for the Roman Catholic Church, which will then be the director of the entire field of human spirituality! Tibetan Master or Christian Priest? can be read for the full quotes and details of this and much more. If Bailey students or Theosophists do not see anything alarming or disturbing in the Jesus-Vatican idea, we must again urge their reading of the article Theosophy, The Jesuits & The Roman Catholic Church.

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Tibetan Master or Christian Priest?

(Uncovering the real inspiration behind the Alice Bailey Books)