The United Lodge of Theosophists, or ULT for short, was founded in 1909 by Robert Crosbie, who had been a close colleague, friend, and pupil of William Q. Judge and a private pupil of H.P. Blavatsky. More can be read about this in the article The Man Who Rescued Theosophy. The ULT has only one guiding document and this expresses its aims, objectives, nature, and the reason for its existence. It is called the “Declaration” and it says:
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The policy of this Lodge is independent devotion to the cause of Theosophy, without professing attachment to any Theosophical organization. It is loyal to the great Founders of the Theosophical Movement, but does not concern itself with dissensions or differences of individual opinion.
The work it has on hand and the end it keeps in view are too absorbing and too lofty to leave it the time or inclination to take part in side issues. That work and that end is the dissemination of the Fundamental Principles of the philosophy of Theosophy, and the exemplification in practice of those principles, through a truer realization of the SELF; a profounder conviction of Universal Brotherhood.
It holds that the unassailable basis for union among Theosophists, wherever and however situated, is “similarity of aim, purpose and teaching,” and therefore has neither Constitution, By-Laws nor Officers, the sole bond between its Associates being that basis. And it aims to disseminate this idea among Theosophists in the furtherance of Unity.
It regards as Theosophists all who are engaged in the true service of Humanity, without distinction of race, creed, sex, condition or organization, and
It welcomes to its association all those who are in accord with its declared purposes and who desire to fit themselves, by study and otherwise, to be the better able to help and teach others.
“THE TRUE THEOSOPHIST BELONGS TO NO CULT OR SECT, YET BELONGS TO EACH AND ALL.”
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Very little of the wording of the ULT Declaration came from Mr Crosbie himself, as the majority of it is a compilation of statements by HPB and WQJ quoted from various sources and publications.
In the article “Plain Theosophical Traces” William Judge uses the phrase “the old and united Lodge of Adepts.”
Several months before he passed away, he sent a letter on behalf of The Theosophical Society in America to the Convention of the European Section of the Theosophical Society, which said in part:
“Let us then press forward together in the great work of the real Theosophical Movement which is aided by working organizations, but is above them all. Together we can devise more and better ways for spreading the light of truth through all the earth. Mutually assisting and encouraging one another we may learn how to put Theosophy into practice so as to be able to teach and enforce it by example before others. We will then each and all be members of that Universal Lodge of Free and Independent Theosophists which embraces every friend of the human race.”
It’s thought that Mr Crosbie probably derived his inspiration for the name “United Lodge of Theosophists” from these two phrases or terms used by his Teacher.
In 1887, William Judge wrote an article in “The Path” magazine which he edited in New York, saying a few words about the nature and aims of the magazine. He said:
“THE PATH will continue its policy of independent devotion to the Cause of Theosophy, without professing to be the organ either of the Society or of any Branch; it is loyal to the great Founders of the Society, but does not concern itself with dissentions or differences of individual opinion. The work it has on hand and the end it keeps in view, are too absorbing and too lofty to leave it the time or inclination to take part in side issues … THE PATH wishes all its readers … progress in the knowledge of the great and vital truths of Theosophy, a truer realization of The Self, a profounder conviction of Universal Brotherhood.”
In his 1895 article titled “The Theosophical Movement” he wrote, “The real unity and prevalence, and the real internationalism, do not consist in having a single organization. They are found in the similarity of aim, of aspiration, of purpose, of teaching, of ethics.”
In “The Key to Theosophy” p. 230-231, H.P. Blavatsky says that what is due to humanity at large is “Full recognition of equal rights and privileges for all, and without distinction of race, colour, social position, or birth.”
The phrase towards the end of the ULT Declaration which says “to fit themselves, by study and otherwise, to be the better able to help and teach others” reflects a phrase which is quoted as part of a Pledge in an article titled “The Meaning of a Pledge” which was published by HPB in “Lucifer” magazine.
In “The Path” for February 1888, William Judge answering an enquirer said, “We must bear in mind that the true Theosophist belongs to no cult or sect, yet belongs to each and all.”
And HPB, in the posthumously published “The Duty of the True Occultist toward Religions” remarks that, “The student of Occultism must belong to no special creed or sect, yet he is bound to show outward respect to every creed and faith, if he would become an Adept of the Good Law.”
So about 70%, if not more, of the wording of the ULT Declaration is directly derived from the words of WQJ and HPB. And the expressed mission statement of the United Lodge of Theosophists is “To spread broadcast the Teachings of Theosophy as recorded in the writings of H.P. Blavatsky and William Q. Judge.”
~ BlavatskyTheosophy.com ~
OTHER ARTICLES ABOUT THE ULT AND ITS WORK: The Four Branches of the Theosophical Movement, The United Lodge of Theosophists, On Anonymity and Impersonality, The Man Who Rescued Theosophy, The Commitment of the ULT, and What it means to be an Associate of the ULT.