The fundamentalist Christian website www.jesus-is-savior.com contains a
particularly misleading, fallacious, and deliberately dishonest critique of H.P. Blavatsky, Theosophy, and the Theosophical Movement.
The article in question is titled “Theosophy is of the Devil” and written by David J. Stewart.
Unfortunately Mr Stewart – like many other evangelical Christians – has no interest in even attempting to understand basic facts of history and philosophy. Everything is viewed through the narrow and self-imposed blinkers of an unthinking and wilfully ignorant religious dogma which has nothing in common with the real beliefs and practices of the original Christians, who would no doubt be condemned to hell by our kind critic with the same zeal and fury which he so readily displays towards Theosophists.
If he and his sympathisers are inclined to deny the above assertion, they are invited to read What Do We Mean by “Occult”?, Lucifer the Lightbringer, Reincarnation and Christianity, The Impersonal Divine, Blavatsky on Vicarious Atonement, The Blatant Fallibility of Christian Theology and Responding to Lies about H.P. Blavatsky and to do so calmly and carefully. Is it possible? Are they able to respond in a reasoned and intelligent matter to all the points raised in such articles as these, without resorting to torrents of verbal abuse and condemnation, liberally peppered with Bible quotations which are never likely to have any effect on anyone other than those who are already Bible-believing Christians? Time will tell.
“Theosophy is of the Devil” begins by declaring Helena Petrovna Blavatsky, founder of the Theosophical Movement, to have been an “Occultist and Satan worshipper.”
Yes, she was an occultist. But this is a much misunderstood and vilified word, which really has nothing inherently dark or sinister about it. For proof and explanation of this, the reader is invited to examine the article What Do We Mean by “Occult”?
The charge of “Satan worshipper” is much more serious. For a full rebuttal of such a notion, we must urge the reading of Lucifer the Lightbringer. Due to the length of that article, we cannot quote it all here but reproduce several paragraphs therefrom:
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One of the most slanderous, ignorant, and utterly false accusations that has been repeatedly directed at H.P. Blavatsky and against Theosophists in general over the years is the claim that Theosophy is a form of satanism and that Madame Blavatsky was a devil worshipper.
To a Theosophist, such an assertion is as laughable as it is ridiculous and nonsensical.
Those accusations and condemnations originate primarily from the realm of Christianity and from those of its adherents who believe in a personal anthropomorphic God and a personal anthropomorphic devil, the supposed enemy of that God.
Considering the fact that Lucifer and Satan have come to be viewed as synonymous terms and names for the same entity, it is not too hard to see why our Christian friends have jumped to such a conclusion, seeing as the Theosophical magazine started in England in the late 1880s by HPB was titled “Lucifer” and that in her masterpiece work “The Secret Doctrine” she speaks of Lucifer in positive and glowing terms.
But there are several important points which need to be understood…
#1. Christianity does not have a monopoly on the term “Lucifer” nor on its definition. The Christian concept and definition of the term “Lucifer” is merely the latest in a long line of definitions and interpretations of this pre-Christian term.
#2. The word “Lucifer” occurs only once in the entire Bible. This is in Isaiah 14:12, which says: “How art thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! how art thou cut down to the ground, which didst weaken the nations!” Those who read this verse in its actual context will clearly see that the sentence is applied specifically to a certain Babylonian king who was an enemy in war of the Israelites. The original Hebrew text uses the word הֵילֵל which literally means “bright star” or “shining one,” a term applied sarcastically or mockingly by the Israelites to this particular enemy of theirs. The translators of the King James Version of the Bible – one of the chief of whom was the well known Rosicrucian initiate Dr Robert Fludd, a fact which will no doubt shock and horrify many Christians – chose to translate this word with the Latin word “Lucifer.”
#3. “Lucifer” literally means Lightbringer, Lightbearer, Bringer of Dawn, Shining One, or Morning Star. The word has no other meaning. Historically and astronomically, the term “Morning Star” has always been applied to the planet Venus.
#4. Since the only occurrence of the word “Lucifer” in the Bible is that one verse in Isaiah, there is absolutely nothing in the Bible which says that Lucifer is Satan or the devil. It was Pope Gregory the Great (540-604 AD) who was the first person to apply that passage of scripture to Satan and thus to equate Lucifer with Satan. But even then this notion didn’t catch on in a big way until the much more recent popularisation of John Milton’s “Paradise Lost” in which Lucifer is used as another name for Satan, the evil adversary of God. Also, such luminaries of the Christian world as Martin Luther and John Calvin considered it “a gross error” to apply Isaiah 14:12 to the devil, “for the context plainly shows these statements must be understood in reference to the king of the Babylonians.”
#5. Thus the Christians who claim that Lucifer is the devil actually have no Biblical basis or authority for such a belief. Though they may claim to be “Bible believing Christians” whose faith is built solely on “the Word of God” they are actually followers – in this and many other respects – of Christian religious tradition and not of the Christian Bible. Or have they quietly conferred divine infallibility upon the Pope and Milton without informing the rest of the world?
#6. H.P. Blavatsky was never at any point in her life a Christian, gave no credence to Christian theology and did not believe in any type of personal or anthropomorphic God nor in any type of personal or anthropomorphic devil. She believed and taught that there is but ONE Infinite Divine Life which is everything and in everything and that It has no adversary or enemy, since there is nothing but That – the boundless, impersonal, omnipresent Principle of Absolute Existence Itself. She was against the notion of worshipping or praying to anyone or anything. She taught that evil is really imperfection, which is the automatic and inevitable byproduct of the existence of matter.
. . . We can sum up by saying that what H.P. Blavatsky has to say about Lucifer is entirely esoteric, symbolical, and philosophical. Those four excerpts quoted above [Note: see the article for these] are virtually the only specific statements and explanations she ever made about Lucifer, although fanatical Christians and half-crazed conspiracy theorists like to give the impression that she spent almost all her time ranting and raving about Lucifer, which is simply not true.
. . . But as she was later to remark, the ignorant and erroneous belief that Lucifer = Satan “has struck its roots too deep in the soil of blind faith” to allow many people to bravely, boldly, and unashamedly reveal the true origins and true nature of what the so-called Lucifer actually is. Those who attempt to do so are always bound to be immediately labelled as “satanists” and “devil worshippers” by a certain class of Christian, those whose trademark characteristics invariably tend to be wilful ignorance and mental laziness. It has indeed become a “branded name,” one which still automatically conjures up the image of an anthropomorphic devil even in the minds of the most hardened atheists.
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But there is a particular statement which Mr Stewart and others of his ilk delight in pulling out of the bag in order to “prove” categorically that HPB believed and taught that Satan is God. Let us see how the Christian apologist presents it. He quotes HPB in the following manner and attributes the quote to her book “The Secret Doctrine”:
“It is Satan who is the God of our planet and the only God.” pages 215, 216, 220, 245, 255, 533, (VI)
It is unclear what the “(VI)” is referring to. “The Secret Doctrine” consists of only two volumes, titled “Cosmogenesis” and “Anthropogenesis.” Even with the spurious “Third Volume” published six years after HPB’s death by Annie Besant and with the later “Adyar Edition” in which those three volumes were spread out over five, there has never been a “Volume VI” of “The Secret Doctrine.”
Turning to the page numbers referred to in both the first and second volumes, we find that only two of those six pages make any mention or reference to the subject matter of Satan or the devil or Lucifer. These are pages 215 and 245 and they are in Volume 2. But the quotation provided is not to be found on any of those pages.
It would seem that Mr Stewart is either casually repeating erroneous references from other anti-Theosophical sources, without bothering to check them out for himself, or he is deliberately attempting to make it seem that HPB makes statements such as this numerous times in her book, whilst hoping that none of his website visitors will actually bother to look up the references provided and check for themselves. Out of charity, we must assume that the former is the case, rather than the latter, although even this doesn’t paint the gentleman in a particularly good light, since it shows abysmally sloppy scholarship, as does the rest of his “critique,” as will be demonstrated shortly.
The website never makes mention of “The Secret Doctrine” Vol. 2, p. 234, but this is where the “Satan is God” quote may be found. Of course, it doesn’t actually say “Satan is God” but many Christians and conspiracy theorists have enjoyed for many years promulgating the lie that HPB said such a thing. Perhaps the reason for not giving the correct page number is because anyone could then easily find out that HPB is being misquoted and misrepresented. Here’s what it actually says:
“It is “Satan who is the god of our planet and the only god,” and this without any allusive metaphor to its wickedness and depravity. For he is one with the Logos, “the first son, eldest of the gods,” in the order of microcosmic (divine) evolution; Saturn (Satan), astronomically, “is the seventh and last in the order of macrocosmic emanation, being the circumference of the kingdom of which Phoebus (the light of wisdom, also the Sun) is the centre.” The Gnostics were right, then, in calling the Jewish god “an angel of matter,” or he who breathed (conscious) life into Adam, and he whose planet was Saturn.”
It was not H.P. Blavatsky herself who made this assertion about Satan. These words in quotation marks – including the comment about Satan – are quoted by her from an Hermetic text which was translated and included in the book “The Perfect Way” by Dr Anna Kingsford. This is clearly stated and shown on the preceding page (p. 233) and HPB’s remarks on p. 234 are simply a commentary on this, using Hermes’ own phrases.
So, for the record, HPB never declared that “Satan is God and the only God.” Hermes – or an ancient writer using that name – said it and HPB merely quoted it. To attempt to make people believe that it was her own proclamation of praise, worship, or adherence to Satan, is nothing short of clever cunning and deliberate deception. Hardly very Christian behaviour, is it?
After misquoting HPB, Mr Stewart further informs us that she was a “32° Co-Freemason.” This is false.
In November 1877, shortly after her first book “Isis Unveiled” was published, she was made an honorary Freemason, in what she described as an “unsolicited and unexpected testimonial of their approval of my humble labors.” Her honorary Masonic Diploma, signed by John Yarker, did not confer upon her any particular degree, nor does it make any mention of such.
She herself never had any personal connection with Freemasonry, least of all with Co-Masonry, which only became connected with The Theosophical Society some years after her death, through the influence of such people as C.W. Leadbeater and Annie Besant, whose version of Theosophy was profoundly different from the original. After her initial published acknowledgement of the Diploma, HPB made no further reference to it. She didn’t draw attention to it, never attended Masonic meetings or events, and was indeed continually critical of all forms of modern Masonry. Most of her students and colleagues would have been surprised to learn that she had been awarded such an honour, if indeed it was an honour.
What she wrote on the matter, in February 1878, is summarised in these words from her letter to the Editor of “The Franklin Register”:
“I am obliged to correct certain errors in your highly complimentary editorial in the REGISTER of the 18th January. You say that I have taken “the regular degrees in masonic lodges” and “attained high dignity in the order”; and further add: “upon Madam B. has recently been conferred the diploma of the 33d masonic degree from the oldest masonic body in the world.”
“If you will kindly refer to my Isis Unveiled (Vol. II, p. 324,) you will find me saying: “We are neither under promise, obligation, nor oath, and therefore violate no confidence,” reference being made to Western masonry, to the criticism of which the chapter is devoted; and full assurance is given that I have never taken “the regular degrees” in any Western masonic lodge. Of course, therefore, having taken no such degrees, I am not a 33d degree Mason.”
Neither a 33° Mason nor a 32° Co-Freemason. Can Mr Stewart get anything right about HPB and Theosophy? Bypassing his ridiculous assertion that “Clearly, Helena Blavatsky was a devout Satan worshipper, and an enemy of the cross of Jesus Christ,” let us move further down the article to his explanation of what he calls “Theosophy Basics.”
In our article The Four Branches of the Theosophical Movement, we stated:
“It has been more than a century since there was just one Theosophical Society. The first split in the Theosophical Movement occurred in 1895, four years after the death of H.P. Blavatsky. Today there are four main branches of the Theosophical Movement, all of which are organisationally distinct from one another. There is no such thing as THE Theosophical Society, since there are three totally unrelated international organisations all using this name. There is also a fourth worldwide group which does not call itself a Theosophical Society but the “United Lodge of Theosophists”.”
Apparently the only branch or stream of the Movement that “Jesus is Savior” has heard of is “The Theosophical Society – Adyar.” Although only amounting to ¼ of the Theosophical Movement, this is treated by Mr Stewart as if the Adyar Society is the whole Theosophical Movement which, thankfully, it is not. But what can we expect from someone who calls The Anthroposophical Society “The Anthropological Society”?!?
Unfortunately the misinformation takes a decidedly more vicious turn when it comes to the personal life and character of HPB herself. We are told that “her marriage lasted 3 months, and she gave birth to an illegitimate son. She was addicted to hashish, and claimed psychic powers of the occult, but she was declared a fraud in India and London. She died as a lonely, obese, and miserable sick women who was considered a fake and deserted by most of her followers.”
Did her marriage to Nikifor Blavatsky last only three months? Yes. Did she give birth to an illegitimate son? No, she never gave birth at all. This was an unfounded rumour begun a long time ago by opponents of Theosophy and which, due to its own illegitimate nature, is not taken seriously today by anyone. Even critical biographers of HPB know perfectly well that it isn’t true. She never consummated her marriage, always refused romantic interest and attention, and remained a lifelong virgin, as was confirmed by doctors towards the end of her life.
As to her being addicted to hashish, there is no evidence for this. The idea originates with one A.L. Rawson, mistakenly considered by some to have been a close friend of HPB for more than 40 years, and who claimed – only after her death, please note, when she was no longer around to defend herself or contradict the assertion – that she had told him in her younger days, “Hasheesh multiplies one’s life a thousandfold. My experiences are as real as if they were ordinary events of actual life. Ah! I have the explanation. It is a recollection of my former existences, my previous incarnations. It is a wonderful drug and it clears up profound mystery.”
The actual facts are that A.L. Rawson was a sort of friend of HPB but couldn’t be described as a “close” friend, least of all a close friend for over 40 years. She met him in Egypt during her travels as a young woman and she quotes something from him about the Druzes of Mount Lebanon in “Isis Unveiled,” published in 1877. But we have never seen or read anything mentioning any contact, correspondence, or connection between them from that time until she passed away in 1891.
An article at the Blavatsky News blog site says:
“The “validity” of Rawson’s character has been the subject of a good piece of investigative journalism by John Patrick Deveney, “The Travels of H.P. Blavatsky and the Chronology of Albert Leighton Rawson: an unsatisfying investigation into H.P.B.’s whereabouts in the early 1850s,” published in the October 2004 issue of Theosophical History. Simply put: Rawson = suspect.”
Not being able to comment 100% for definite on what Rawson attributed to HPB, seeing as we weren’t there, we would say that we strongly doubt the legitimacy of it, especially as so many words and deeds have been falsely attributed to her over the years, with different motives by different people, and also because her purported words just don’t sound like her way of speaking and writing.
But for our friend Mr Stewart, anything which casts HPB in a bad light is worth using, regardless of its accuracy or legitimacy, if it helps to further his frenzied purposes, which are summed up at the bottom of his article in the words “Ye Must Be Born Again!”
Now, did HPB claim “psychic powers of the occult”? Not really; she demonstrated extraordinary powers, abilities, and faculties, rather than spending her time making claims about them. As for what “occult” really means, the reader is referred once more to the article What Do We mean by “Occult”? She was supposedly “declared a fraud in India and London.” So what? Wasn’t Jesus declared a fraud by his contemporaries, as also by many others ever since? One can be declared a fraud without actually being a fraud. As it happens, this is the first time we have heard of her having been “declared a fraud in … London.” When and by whom? This is something missing from all the history books but apparently well known to Mr Stewart.
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Around thirty different people in various different parts of the world reported and described having seen or met some of these Masters during HPB’s lifetime. In a few of these instances the Master or Masters were present in their physical body but for the majority they were in their astral body and appearing at a distance from wherever they may have been physically at that moment in time. Even some of the enemies of the Theosophical Movement admitted the existence of the Masters, especially as some of their visitations had occurred in front of whole groups of people, who had afterwards all testified in writing, under their own signatures and on their word of honour, to having witnessed the same thing. Sometimes the Masters were seen near HPB or in her presence and other times in entirely different countries or continents from where she was.
In early 1879, HPB and Colonel Olcott arrived in India, having relocated the headquarters of the Theosophical Society there from New York. William Judge and a few others remained behind in the USA to carry on the work there, although public interest was very minimal in those early years.
From 1880 to 1884, the Masters K.H. and M. maintained a written correspondence with A.P. Sinnett, a prominent upper class Englishman then living in India who had joined the Society and expressed the wish to help present and promulgate the Masters’ teachings. Their hundreds of letters to him were donated after his death to the oriental department of the British Museum in London and are now housed in the British Library, where anyone can see them by prior appointment. These letters, also published after his death in the book “The Mahatma Letters,” provided the basis and inspiration for Sinnett’s own books “The Occult World” and “Esoteric Buddhism,” which had the effect of drawing worldwide interest to Theosophy and the Movement.
The very idea of the existence of such Masters was considered fantastical and ridiculous by many people of the time, just as it is today. When it was discovered that numerous people were claiming to have received letters and written communications from these Masters, the conclusion of the sceptically inclined was that HPB herself must have been engaged in forging hundreds of letters to people around the world to trick them into thinking they were in correspondence with those Beings.
HPB consented to allow the suspiciously minded SPR, or Society for Psychical Research, to investigate into the matter for themselves, by analysing all the evidence available and interviewing anyone willing who claimed to have either seen, met, or received letters from the Masters. Richard Hodgson’s report, published by the SPR in 1885, accused HPB of forgery and fraud, despite furnishing no actual proof or evidence of this.
Anyone interested in this matter may like to read Prof. Vernon Harrison’s 1986 and 1997 report and critique on such accusations. Harrison, a trained expert in forgery and counterfeit himself, showed that the Hodgson Report was by no means “the model of impartial investigation so often claimed for it over the past century. It is flawed and untrustworthy; and Hodgson’s observations and conclusions need to be taken with a considerable port of salt. The case of Helena Petrovna Blavatsky needs re-examination in this light. She deserves no less.” Prof. Harrison’s report and findings were so conclusive that the SPR was forced to publish and acknowledge them in their own journal. Today all except the uninformed and the bigoted cannot but agree with Harrison’s remarks that the Hodgson Report was “riddled with slanted statements and downright falsity.”
HPB, knowing perfectly well that she was no fraud, wanted to take the SPR to court. Olcott, president of the Theosophical Society, would not agree to let her do so, fearing that it would result in even further scandal and public commotion which would damage and be detrimental to the Society’s aims, influence, and public reputation. HPB, caring more for truth and justice than public image and reputation, was dejected and disheartened by what she perceived as lack of support and lack of confidence on the part of Olcott and others and left India for Europe, never to return.
She herself received very few “Mahatma Letters” in comparison with others, as she was understood to be in regular telepathic contact and communication with the Adepts and thus had little need for written letters. She asserted that it would not be too long before scientists would acknowledge that no distance exists in the realm of mind and that there is nothing abnormal or supernatural about two harmoniously attuned minds being able to communicate at a distance with the same ease and clarity as two individuals in the same room.
Letters from the same Masters continued to be received in various ways after HPB’s death, less frequently but in the same handwritings and style and extolling the same principles and teachings as before, along with wise advice and in some cases prophetically accurate warnings about the condition and future of the Movement. The last known was in 1900, nine years after HPB had passed away, and at the very close of the 25 year centennial cycle.
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The above, along with HPB’s and the Masters’ own writings, does away with Mr Stewart’s later misstatement that “She claimed to receive her revelations from Secret Chiefs, or disembodied Ascended Masters.” As was said in the article from which we have just quoted:
“[The Theosophical Mahatmas] are misunderstood by many people today due largely to their misrepresentation by later Theosophists after the time of HPB and by those persons within the New Age Movement who purport to be in contact with the same Masters and who call them “Ascended Masters” and portray them as some sort of disembodied angelic or god-like beings living in other realms and liberally dispensing sentimental commonplaces and inane quasi-Christian ideas, replete with all the latest New Age jargon and buzzwords, whilst flatly denying and contradicting all the teachings given out through HPB and in their own Letters. If these so-called “Ascended Masters” have any existence at all outside of the imagination and hallucinations of their self-proclaimed channellers and worshippers, it is safe to say that they are most certainly not the same individuals as the Masters connected with HPB and the Theosophical Movement.
“The Masters of Theosophy are said to be living in physical bodies right here on Earth, for this is where they are needed and they have certain important work to do on the physical plane. They tend to dwell in purposeful seclusion and isolation from the impure and truly toxic psychic atmosphere and magnetism of the modern world.
“The Masters most often spoken of are the Master Morya and the Master Koot Hoomi, belonging to a hidden Esoteric Brotherhood with its main base in the Trans-Himalayan region, the Chief of whom being referred to as the Maha Chohan, the Master of the Masters. It is often called the “Trans-Himalayan Brotherhood” but this is only a geographical designation rather than the actual name of the Brotherhood, which is the most important of numerous such Brotherhoods of Adepts around the world which are linked together, forming one Great Brotherhood of Initiates.”
Finally, we are told that HPB “died as a lonely, obese, and miserable sick women who was considered a fake and deserted by most of her followers.”
It is a rather sad fact that many opponents of Theosophy feel it necessary to refer to the fact of HPB having been overweight. What bearing does this have on the whole subject? Anyone even faintly acquainted with the details of her life will be aware that her excess weight, which only really became obesity in her last few years, was as a result of severe health problems which impaired the proper functioning of her system and left her rather disabled and physically immobile. We all know that many people all over the world become grossly overweight due to various medical issues. Very few of us feel the need to draw attention to the fact or to highlight and emphasise the obesity of such unfortunates.
As for her being “lonely” and “miserable” this is not quite true. She became increasingly saddened by the degenerate state of humanity but was at the same time surrounded and supported by many colleagues, co-workers, and students. Far from being “considered a fake and deserted by most of her followers,” she and her teachings were gaining increasing respect and acceptance, especially in England where she spent her final few years and in the USA where her closest colleague and co-founder of the Society William Q. Judge was in charge of affairs, and interest in her work and in Theosophy itself was growing by the day. This continued to be the case until a couple of years after her passing, when problems began with Annie Besant. It naturally goes without saying that HPB was a woman, not a “women.”
We are forced to conclude that Mr Stewart was obviously rather tired when completing his article, as his closing paragraphs clearly demonstrate a complete lack of research and an increasing tendency to simply make things up. He writes that the Theosophical teachings are:
“a mix of Hinduism, Buddhism, Spiritualism, and Gnostic Christianity, with Masonic rituals, and a systematic criticism of Christianity, Judaism and Islam… all based in the visions and revelations that Mme. Blavatsky had by the “Mahatnas” of Tibet, and the Spiritualism she lived in the USA. The “Mahatnas” are the “Great White Fraternity,” among them, Buddha, Krishna, and Jesus… and the theosophians try to get in contact with them by means of all kinds of occultism. God is just “energy”; however, there are a plethora of Hindu gods, to whom you have to put altars at home.”
Students of Theosophy will find it hard not to laugh at this nonsense, even if they are sufficiently good natured to suppress a chortle at such terms as “Mahatnas” and “theosophians.” Mr Stewart has only just informed us that the “Mahatnas” are disembodied Ascended Masters and now he acknowledges that they are in Tibet. Which is it? Theosophy certainly doesn’t encourage trying to get in contact with them, whether “by means of all kinds of occultism” or by means of a stamped addressed envelope.
As we said in The Masters in Theosophy:
“Next to nothing in the way of personal details or information is divulged about them by HPB, nor is there any clear reason why it should be. It is said to be a very difficult thing to come in direct contact with the Masters and that they have little interest in initiating communication with even the vast majority of Theosophists. For one thing, it is not necessary.
“They have made it abundantly clear in their own words that no Theosophist has any right to special contact or communications unless they have earned the right through persistent unselfish work for the great Theosophical Cause, which is their Cause of Universal Brotherhood, and which far transcends any particular theosophical society or organisation. There is an old saying that “When the disciple is ready, the Master will appear.” But even then, one still shouldn’t count on it or expect it but should simply do what has to be done to alleviate the suffering, on all levels, of one’s fellow beings.”
Practical occultism is in fact advised against in Theosophy and ceremonies and ritualism – whether Masonic or otherwise – have neither part nor place, except in “The Theosophical Society – Adyar” which abandoned the original Theosophy of H.P. Blavatsky and William Q. Judge more than a century ago. As for us having to erect altars in our home to “a plethora of Hindu gods,” this is too absurd and erroneous to warrant a response. The first and only place we have ever heard or read of this is on the “Jesus is Savior” website. Theosophy discourages prayer and worship and is strongly opposed to idolatry. There is nothing Theosophical about such practices.
The second main aim or object of the Theosophical Movement was to draw the world’s attention Eastward; to promote the study and investigation of the religions, philosophies, and sciences of India and the East, particularly those relating to Hinduism and Buddhism, and to demonstrate both their greatness and their vital importance for humanity at large.
The first introduction of Eastern spirituality to the West came via Theosophy. It should be understood though that Theosophy does not encourage anyone to become a Hindu or a Buddhist. It simply maintains that the core philosophies of these two religions have remained more pure and less corrupted and distorted – and thus far closer to the Truth – than those of the other religions of the world.
As a result, the Theosophical teachings use some terminology and aspects of Hindu and Buddhist philosophy (the philosophy, please note; not the practices or the rituals or the idol worship) in order to present some of the Ancient Wisdom more clearly and comprehensibly. In 1888, HPB was to write: “We say it again: archaic Occultism would remain incomprehensible to all, if it were rendered otherwise than through the more familiar channels of Buddhism and Hinduism. For the former is the emanation of the latter; and both are children of one mother – ancient Lemuro-Atlantean Wisdom.” (“The Secret Doctrine” Vol. 1, p. 668)
To many superficial onlookers, Theosophy may appear to be a blend or mixture of Buddhism and Hinduism but it is in fact far more than that. To repeat what was said in Theosophy – An Explanation and Overview:
““Ancient Wisdom” is only one name which has been applied to the Great Knowledge. It has also been called Ageless Wisdom, Divine Wisdom, Divine Science, Gnosis, Atma-Vidya, Brahma-Vidya, Gupta-Vidya, Sanatana Dharma, Esoteric Philosophy, Esoteric Science, Occult Philosophy, Sacred Science, the Wisdom-Religion, and the Secret Doctrine. It is the Esoteric Teaching which underlies all the world’s religions. It is also the archaic and primeval source and fountainhead of all the truth which may be found in the various religions, philosophies, and sciences of the world. . . .
“Rather than being a religion, it could be described as the very essence of Religion itself. Rather than being a philosophy, it could be described as the very essence of Philosophy itself. Rather than being a science, it could be described as the very essence of Science itself.
“The famous motto of the Theosophical Movement is “There is no Religion higher than Truth.” This can be interpreted or understood in various different ways. Its main meaning for Theosophists, however, is that Truth exists and that it of course transcends and pre-dates all religions. Theosophy maintains and demonstrates that all religions are the same in their esoteric essence. All religions contain some portion of the Truth, some to a greater degree than others. Since all religions are inevitably self-limited, however, none can contain the whole Truth. Theosophy is thus something universal and neither adheres to nor promotes any one religion.
“Theosophists may belong to any religion or no religion at all. The quest for Truth and Reality in the midst of this ignorant world of delusion and deception…this is what actually matters. . . .
“Something insisted upon by H.P. Blavatsky and her Teachers was the importance of providing proofs, references, evidences, and sources in order to show the validity, legitimacy, and authenticity of the teachings presented. Utilising thousands of supporting references from a multitudinous array of the most diverse and distant sources, HPB proved the timelessness, reliability, and universality of the Theosophical doctrines, even those which seemed at first glance to be the most peculiar. Her books “The Secret Doctrine” and “Isis Unveiled” contain a myriad of references and quotations from the realms of religion, philosophy, classical literature, ancient and modern history, and science. . . .
“In the view of HPB, “The Esoteric philosophy is alone calculated to withstand, in this age of crass and illogical materialism, the repeated attacks on all and everything man holds most dear and sacred, in his inner spiritual life. The true philosopher, the student of the Esoteric Wisdom, entirely loses sight of personalities, dogmatic beliefs and special religions.”
““Moreover,” she continues, “Esoteric philosophy reconciles all religions, strips every one of its outward, human garments, and shows the root of each to be identical with that of every other great religion. It proves the necessity of an absolute Divine Principle in nature. It denies Deity no more than it does the Sun. Esoteric philosophy has never rejected God in Nature, nor Deity as the absolute and abstract Ens. It only refuses to accept any of the gods of the so-called monotheistic religions, gods created by man in his own image and likeness, a blasphemous and sorry caricature of the Ever Unknowable.”” (“The Secret Doctrine” Vol. 1, Introductory, p. xx)
If people would only read and study genuine Theosophy – by which we mean the original – for themselves and with a sincere heart and an open mind, they would discover it to be what it claims to be. Evidently, David J. Stewart is unwilling or perhaps even afraid to do so, fearing that to do so would be equivalent to dancing with the devil, and thus endeavours to make others unwilling and afraid to do so too. This he accomplishes through a mixture of what we have shown to be ignorance, appallingly bad research, misquotation, false references, and downright lies.
In so doing, he does a great disservice not only to Theosophy and H.P. Blavatsky – about whom he obviously cares very little – but also to Christianity and…to himself. Dishonesty, misrepresentation, and unethical behaviour, are not excusable, regardless of one’s convictions.
~ Blavatsky Theosophy Group UK ~
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