The United Lodge of Theosophists

United Lodge of Theosophists

107 YEARS AND COUNTING . . .

In their Letters, the Masters – who were the real Founders of the Theosophical Movement – speak of there being special cycles of 107 years.

18th February 2016 is exactly 107 years since the United Lodge of Theosophists came into being.

Many Theosophists around the world still have the mistaken notion that The Theosophical Society with its international headquarters at Adyar, India, is the only Theosophical organisation in the world or at least that it is somehow “central” or “superior” within the Theosophical Movement. This is not the case at all.

It has been more than a century since there was just one Theosophical Society. There are today four main “branches” or “streams” within the Theosophical Movement.

“The Theosophical Society – Adyar” (including its American Section named “The Theosophical Society in America”) is only one of these and thus amounts to only ¼ of the Theosophical Movement at large. There are three unrelated international organisations using the name “The Theosophical Society,” all organisationally distinct and independent from one another. These are “The Theosophical Society – Adyar,” “The Theosophical Society – Pasadena,” and “The Theosophical Society – Point Loma.”

There is also the United Lodge of Theosophists, or ULT for short, which does not call itself a “Theosophical Society” but rather a voluntary international association for the study and promulgation of the original teachings of Theosophy. In terms of numbers, size, locations, and influence, the ULT is second in the Movement today. The Adyar Society and the ULT have become the two “major players” in the Theosophical Movement of the 21st century.

Yet misunderstanding, confusion, or even total lack of knowledge regarding the ULT still prevails amongst many. It is hoped that these 14 questions and answers will help to provide a clearer understanding and awareness of the ULT, on this occasion of its 107th birthday.

~ * ~

Q. What is the mission and purpose of the United Lodge of Theosophists?

A. Its expressed mission statement is “To spread broadcast the original teachings of Theosophy as recorded in the writings of H.P. Blavatsky and William Q. Judge.” In short, it exists to preserve, present, promote, and practise, the teachings of Theosophy in the way they were originally given to the world.

Q. Who was Robert Crosbie and why did he start the ULT?

A. Robert Crosbie (1849-1919) was a member of the original Theosophical Society and a colleague and friend of William Quan Judge and also a pupil of both he and H.P. Blavatsky. He held important positions in the Society in Boston, Massachusetts, and New England in general. When the first split in the Movement occurred in 1895 – with Mr Judge and the American Section declaring complete independence and autonomy from Adyar – Mr Crosbie gave his full support and allegiance to Mr Judge. In the following years, when Katherine Tingley became Leader of the independent Society after Mr Judge’s death, Mr Crosbie initially gave his full support and allegiance to her too. Before long, he realised that this was a mistake and that the claims and very notion of an “Occult Successorship” of Theosophical Leaders were neither true nor legitimate. Parting with Tingley’s organisation, he eventually established the United Lodge of Theosophists in Los Angeles, California, USA, with an initial group of seven students, which soon grew and expanded.

Observing events that had occurred in the Movement following the deaths of HPB and WQJ, he had concluded that “personalities” lay at the root of the Movement’s problems and that the exalting of individuals as “Leaders,” “Successors,” and “New Messengers” of the Masters, had resulted only in confusion, schisms, and the increasing obscuration of the teachings, writings, work, and special occult status, of HPB and WQJ. The ULT was founded as a timely reaction to all this and as an attempt to help restore the Theosophical Movement to its only safe and reliable basis, one always emphatically insisted upon by HPB and the Masters, namely the “original lines,” the “original program,” the “original impulse,” the “original system,” and the “original teachings.”

Q. What makes the ULT different from other Theosophical groups?

A. The ULT is the only branch of the Theosophical Movement which promulgates only the original, unaltered, undistorted teachings of genuine Theosophy. None of the Theosophical Societies do this, since one and all accept and promote later teachers and writers (whether C.W. Leadbeater, Annie Besant, G. de Purucker, Alice Bailey, or others) as legitimate “Successors” to HPB and WQJ and even as having been able and authorised to revise, improve upon, add to or delete from, the Message of HPB. The ULT is distinctive in adhering and pointing exclusively to H.P. Blavatsky and William Judge as the two Teachers and Messengers of Theosophy and of the Lodge of Masters for our present times. It is only in and through the ULT that one can get Theosophy EXACTLY the way that HPB gave it, in its pure and uncorrupted form.

The principle and application of impersonality and anonymity also seems to be unique to the ULT. The vast majority of articles, magazines, publications, and other endeavours undertaken by ULT associates are unsigned and anonymous as well as avoiding all references to the personal opinions and experiences of the Theosophist responsible. This also extends to the actual Lodges and meetings, where it can be found that the regular students and attendees generally avoid all references to themselves when addressing their fellow students in talks and discussions, as well as making efforts to keep their own personality and individual character traits in the background. The names of speakers are not usually announced or given. All of this is as an attempt to ensure that attention and interest is drawn solely to Theosophy and its teachings rather than to those presenting it, who are but fallible students and who should not be desirous of personal recognition, admiration, or fame.

Q. Who was B.P. Wadia and what did he do for the ULT?

A. B.P. Wadia (1881-1958) was an influential Indian Theosophist who joined forces with the ULT in 1922, three years after the death of Robert Crosbie. He had initially been a member of “The Theosophical Society – Adyar” and a colleague and supporter of such people as Besant and Leadbeater. Looking into the facts and comparing the Adyar versions of the Theosophical teachings and Theosophical history with the actual details and information, he came to the opinion that that Society had strayed hopelessly far from its original intended course. His efforts at reform were largely futile and were suppressed and condemned by the Adyar leaders. Declaring that “The Theosophical Society is disloyal to Theosophy,” he eventually resigned, publishing a famous open letter to explain his reasons, and aligned himself instead with the ULT, whereupon he became greatly responsible for the spread and establishment of the ULT in numerous countries of the world, including his native India. Numerous Lodges still in existence today owe their origins to the work and sacrifices of B.P. Wadia.

Q. Does the ULT have policies, rules, bylaws, regulations, and so forth?

A. It has only one guiding document, which is known as the “Declaration” of the United Lodge of Theosophists. In one sense it is a sort of “Declaration of Independence.” It is included below and is largely a compilation of statements and phrases by HPB and WQJ, quoted from various sources and publications. The Declaration presents the idea that the only legitimate and lasting basis for unity amongst Theosophists is similarity of aim, purpose, and teaching, and that where this similarity or even unity exists among students and workers, there is no need for policies, rules, bylaws, officers, regulations, etc., since unity, harmony, and effective co-operation, will be the natural and inevitable result. Some have viewed this as a very “Aquarian Age” initiative, in that when internal harmony exists, external structures become obsolete.

The Declaration simply states that the work the ULT has on hand is “the dissemination of the Fundamental Principles of the philosophy of Theosophy” and that the end it keeps in view is “the exemplification in practice of those principles, through a truer realization of the SELF; a profounder conviction of Universal Brotherhood.” Naturally, the ULT also holds to the three main objects of the original Theosophical Movement.

Q. Where is the headquarters of the ULT and who are the presidents and leaders?

A. There is no headquarters. The ULT is an independent international association of students of Theosophy, more of an organism than an organisation or Society. The oldest and largest ULT Lodge, where most of the printing and publishing is done, is in Los Angeles and whilst some refer to this as the “Parent Lodge” or “Mother Lodge,” this should not be construed in any organisational or authoritative sense. There is no international president or leader, just as there are no local presidents, officers, or hierarchies.

All Lodges are autonomous and self-governing and even those students who have become most responsible for the maintenance and upkeep of a Lodge and its activities are insistent that they be looked upon solely as “students of Theosophy,” never as teachers, leaders, or guides. The ULT is in essence a School of Theosophy, with the only Teachers being HPB and WQJ. There are currently Lodges and study groups in sixteen nations around the world, namely the USA, India, France, Canada, Belgium, England, Greece, Italy, the Netherlands, Sweden, Portugal, Brazil, Cameroon, the Dominican Republic, Haiti, and Mexico. Some countries have numerous Lodges and groups; others have only one.

Q. How does one become a member of the ULT?

A. There is no membership in the ordinary organisational sense of the term. “Members” are instead spoken of as “associates,” since rather than belonging to something they are associating and connecting themselves with something. There are no costs or fees involved in becoming an associate but nor does it confer any special benefits or privileges. No-one is ever asked or pressured to become an associate. It is simply a voluntary decision to make an outer expression of one’s inner commitment and devotion to the work of the Masters. Some do not feel the need or wish to become an associate and this is perfectly fine. Others do and find it to be something quite transformative and significant in their inner life and spiritual journey.

The way one actually becomes an associate is by signing their name on what is called the Associates Card, a yellow card which contains the Declaration on one side and the associate form on the other. The card can be obtained in person at any Lodge or study group or by requesting it in writing or over the phone from either one’s local Lodge or the Los Angeles Lodge, who can send it by mail.

Anyone can become an associate, even if they live in an area or country where there is currently no ULT. Numerous associates have never even been to a Lodge or attended a meeting but nevertheless feel a great connection with the work and mission of the ULT. After writing their name and address on the card, it is then handed back or sent back, at which point the person is registered as an associate. The Associates Card emphasises that “such association calls for no obligation on my part, other than that which I, myself, determine.”

Q. Is it possible to join the ULT and also be a member of other Theosophical organisations?

A. Yes, of course. There are no restrictions or qualifications that have to be met to become an associate.

Q. How many ULT associates are there around the world?

A. There are likely to be at least a few thousand and certainly tens of thousands since the ULT was first begun in 1909. However, the numbers are not counted or published, since physical plane statistics are of little overall importance. What really matters in the Theosophical Movement is quality, not quantity. The quality here referred to is quality of knowledge, understanding, application, appreciation, and devotion, towards the Eastern Esoteric Philosophy that has been given to us by the Masters and Initiates of the Trans-Himalayan Brotherhood.

Q. Is the ULT growing or shrinking in the 21st century?

A. Students of Theosophy ought to be aware that everything goes in cycles. Whilst it is true that some Lodges are at present experiencing a reduced amount of attendance and interest, it is also true that others are currently experiencing an increase, in attendance, interest, and active participation and commitment. In this technological age, more and more people are encountering and discovering the ULT through the internet and online social media. Quite a few of these become associates and feel energised to work for the Cause, either at or with an existing Lodge or by starting a group or endeavour of their own, be it on the physical plane or online. Nowadays, one cannot derive anything like an accurate insight into the size, spread, and influence of the ULT by counting the number of people in attendance at a Lodge meeting or study class.

Q. Is the Facebook page named “United Lodge of Theosophists” the official Facebook page of the ULT?

A. It is not. In light of the non-organisational and non-centralised nature of the ULT, there cannot be such a thing as the Facebook page of the United Lodge of Theosophists. It is unfortunate that a small group of Brazilian and Portuguese associates use this name in this way and that their disclaimer about the page not being “official” and not being representative of the ULT at large is so briefly worded and not at all prominent, clear, or easily noticeable on the page. Equally unfortunate it is that this page is sometimes used by this group for promotion of their personal political views and opinions (pro-Israel, pro-Russia, pro-Obama, etc.) whereas the ULT and the Theosophical Movement as a whole has absolutely nothing to do with politics and no involvement with such affairs. The ULT is neither pro-Israel nor pro-Palestine and does not concern itself with political matters, which are a private matter for individuals. This has yet to be clearly stated or explained on that page and it is hoped by quite a few associates that the students responsible will both rename the page and cease their mixing of Theosophy and political agendas, not to mention their frequent reference to and promotion of the name of one of the students most responsible, which behaviour is entirely foreign to the impersonal ULT approach.

Q. ULT Lodges have framed photographs on the walls of H.P. Blavatsky, William Q. Judge, and Robert Crosbie, but not of Colonel Olcott. Why is this?

A. The original Theosophical Society was founded in New York in 1875 with three main founders – Helena Petrovna Blavatsky, Colonel Henry Steel Olcott, and William Quan Judge. Olcott became the organisational leader and international president of the Society, which eventually moved its headquarters from the USA to Adyar in India. As these are well known facts, it is perhaps understandable why people ask why Col. Olcott is only very rarely mentioned in the ULT, why there doesn’t seem to be a great deal of admiration for him, and why it is often the case that some speak only of HPB and WQJ as “the founders” of the Movement.

Actually, it is not only the ULT but also the Pasadena and Point Loma Societies which share this somewhat distant attitude towards Col. Olcott. The reason lies in a number of important historical facts, most of which are unfortunately unknown to the majority of the members and supporters of the Adyar Society, who seem to labour under the misconception that HPB and Olcott continually worked closely and happily alongside each other, were always the best of friends, and that Olcott remained completely faithful to HPB, her teachings, and the Masters. Sadly, this is not the case at all and in this, as in other matters, Adyar Society members have been fed a false and misleading picture of Theosophical history. The story is so lengthy that it cannot be dealt with in a brief answer. It is better to read the article Col. Olcott’s Disloyalty to H.P. Blavatsky.

Despite his many serious mistakes and faults – including turning against HPB even while she was still alive and later relentlessly persecuting Mr Judge, in collaboration with Annie Besant and others – Col. Olcott achieved much for the Cause of Theosophy, particularly in the earlier part of his Theosophical career, and also deserves our lasting gratitude and appreciation for his tremendous contribution to the revival of Buddhism and Buddhist philosophy in Asia and elsewhere. But when it comes to the living Theosophical Movement itself, the fact is that this sincere but eventually very misguided man disqualified himself through his own actions from the great respect and reverence in which he would otherwise have been held by all Theosophists everywhere.

Q. Does the ULT support the ITC (International Theosophy Conferences)?

A. While a number of individual associates may and do support the ITC, the ULT as a whole does not, nor does it have any official spokespeople who can claim such support and endorsement on its behalf. The fact is that while a few ULT associates are particularly vocal and active in their support of the ITC, an increasing number of others have entirely distanced themselves from it in recent years, as it has become evident that it is now something strongly opposed to what the ULT is all about, in that it promulgates the notion of all forms and versions of “Theosophy” being equal and valid and the necessity of Theosophists accepting, tolerating, respecting, or even celebrating anything and everything which calls itself “Theosophy” as being legitimate, all in the name of “Unity.” As indicated in its name, the United Lodge of Theosophists believes in the importance of unity too but as said in its Declaration, there is only one truly valid and appropriate basis for this.

Q. Doesn’t the ULT claim that its interpretation of HPB’s teachings is the only correct one?

A. The ULT does not provide or offer an “interpretation” of HPB’s teachings. It provides, offers, and studies HPB’s teachings in their original and unadulterated form and without mixing or blending them in any way with later “Theosophical” teachings. Where such mixture and blending occurs, numerous interpretations of HPB’s teachings can arise, since the student is then viewing her teachings and statements through the lens and filter of other teachings and writings, which more often than not contradict her own. Those who study HPB in undiluted form invariably arrive at the same “interpretation,” which is really no interpretation at all but merely an understanding of what she said and what she meant. Her work needs no interpreters; it merely needs to be studied…studied with the recognition that it is self-explanatory and self-consistent.

It is the ULT position that (1) Theosophy is a very definite Body of Knowledge, a specific System of Teaching, and that contradictions, dilutions, and alterations are not part of it and cannot be accepted as legitimate Theosophical teaching. According to HPB, there is such a thing as “Pure Theosophy” and such a thing as “Pseudo-Theosophy,”; (2) It is necessary for Theosophists and the Theosophical Movement to stay true and faithful to what HPB and the Masters variously called the “original lines,” “original program,” “original impulse,” “original system,” and “original teachings,”; (3) Under the Law of Cycles the Masters were only able and permitted to give out new teachings to the world between 1875-1900 and that no further or deeper information would or could be made available from the Esoteric Doctrine until the closing quarter of the following century – i.e. 1975-2000 – and that even this would be provisional.

This has been erroneously described as fundamentalism, dogmatism, or orthodoxy, by those who are either unacquainted with what the Masters, H.P. Blavatsky, and William Q. Judge, have themselves said or who simply believe that they know better than what the Masters and Their Agents clearly stated. There is a clear and solid basis for these positions, as can be seen in the article Why Stick To The Original?

Earnest students may find in the United Lodge of Theosophists that for which their heart and soul have been silently yearning. They may also find, perchance, that the Theosophical Movement has never yet been abandoned by the true Masters and Their true Messengers, nor will it ever be, as long as the bright flame of devotion continues to burn within the hearts of true students and disciples. “Keep the link unbroken,” said HPB as She departed from this plane.

~ * ~

THE UNITED LODGE OF THEOSOPHISTS 

DECLARATION

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.”

~ * ~

For contact details of ULT centres around the world, please visit the Theosophy Around The World page.

~ Blavatsky Theosophy Group UK ~

Learn more about the United Lodge of Theosophists: The Four Branches of the Theosophical Movement, The Man Who Rescued Theosophy, On Anonymity and Impersonality, The Commitment of the ULT, What it means to be an Associate of the ULT, and The Theosophical Society is Disloyal to Theosophy.

Advertisements

Comments

  1. Duncan Barnett says:

    I need further information on the correlation of the Homer and Hesiod theogonies to esoteric interpretations.

    • Hello Duncan, thank you for your comment.

      Do you have a copy of “The Secret Doctrine” by H.P. Blavatsky, published either by Theosophy Company or Theosophical University Press?

      If so, I can send you a list of page number references for places where Hesiod and Homer are mentioned and elaborated upon in that book.

  2. Leslie Royce Pochos says:

    “The Secret Doctrine” is also available on-line at phx-ult-lodge.org and is searchable by even a single word. Most of the other major works are also available there.

  3. If ULT does not have an official spokesperson to claim support of ITC, who then is claiming that it does not support ITC? Confusing because the Declaration states an association of student. No by law or officers.
    I like many of your articles. Your research seems accurate and your voice strong in defense of the original teachings. That is much appreciated. However if you were having a discussion with someone, a one on one, wouldn’t you care enough about that person to share with them these ideas in a loving and companionate way? Especially someone who’s ideas so closely mirrored your own? Maybe not exactly like yours but would they not have as much right to their understanding as you have to yours? Is it really a bad thing even on a broader spectrum of perhaps many people? I never thought about Theosophist competing with one another for the best understanding of the philosophy. This seems to belong to the personal not universal. It feels very separate and anti-Theosophical. Isn’t it an opportunity that should never be lost,to share and debate in solidarity?

    It’s unfortunate that a mind as bright as the one you are using in this life does not use it to unify not separate. There is a feeling of sadness in my heart, lingering long after having finished reading an article from this website. Something always feels wrong. Not in what you say but in how you say it. Please stop being angry and frightened. It permeates and poisons all you write and is felt by the likes of me and others. I am telling you this to help you find your heart as well as your head. Please stop. It is hurtful to the movement as a whole and is totally unnecessary. Be careful of your focus. The wolf you feed is the one that survives.
    Be loving. Be companionate. Be a true Theosophist. And be smart.
    I certainly don’t need to remind you of the power of thought. Start attracting and stop repelling. I wish you had meet Joe Pope out of NY ULT. I’m sure you’ve heard his name. He was welcoming and generous with all who entered the Lodge. No one felt anything but friendship around him. One of the most important things he ever said to me was about devotion. I was worried about my sister who was a Mormon. Joe said that the development of devotion itself was what was important, not the object of the devotion. That has helped me soften my views to others of different faith as well as with good Theosophists who struggle with certain concepts we find difficult in the west. Evolution is a slow process but every step gets counted.

    • Mona, perhaps it has never occurred to you that your own comment could very easily be viewed in a negative light by those reading it here on the website.

      Despite never having met us nor communicated with us personally in any way whatsoever nor even knowing anything about us personally, you feel confident and competent to publicly diagnose us as being “angry and frightened”…and seemingly all because of the tone of some of the articles on this site and the fact that we voice disagreement with the ITC.

      Many people would disagree with you that the way we do our work “is hurtful to the movement as a whole and is totally unnecessary.” You say that our supposed anger and fear “permeates and poisons all [we] write and is felt by the likes of me and others.” Perhaps you aren’t aware of the distinctly condescending and not especially pleasant tone that pervades your own message. So far our experience shows that the only “others” who feel the contents of this site to be “permeated and poisoned” by anger and fear are a handful of people who are particularly keen supporters and promoters of the ITC. We are not about to change the way we do everything for the sake of a few ITC supporters.

      Although we would usually not wish to mention or draw attention to this, perhaps it might be useful to inform you that this article about the ULT as well as the site as a whole are thought of and have been remarked upon positively and with agreement by numerous longtime and experienced ULT associates from around the world, including some at the Los Angeles Lodge, who felt that the above answers to questions present the character and position of the ULT very well.

      So far the only people to express disagreement or dissatisfaction with this article are two people involved with the organisation and support of the ITC. What does this show you?

      As stated in the article: “While a number of individual associates may and do support the ITC, the ULT as a whole does not, nor does it have any official spokespeople who can claim such support and endorsement on its behalf.”

      With this you took issue and said: “If ULT does not have an official spokesperson to claim support of ITC, who then is claiming that it does NOT support ITC? Confusing because the Declaration states an association of student. No by law or officers.”

      The ULT Declaration also says: “The policy of this Lodge is independent devotion to the cause of Theosophy, without professing attachment to any Theosophical organization.”

      Surely this is clear enough and shows that the ULT cannot and does not profess attachment to any Theosophical organisation. And the ITC is certainly considered a Theosophical organisation, since it has its own president, vice presidents, officers, board of management, articles of incorporation, etc.

      Robert Crosbie provides further clarification on this point in a letter on p. 388 of “The Friendly Philosopher”:

      “As the years go on, and “U.L.T.” becomes better known by its fruits, it will be more and more difficult for those who have an axe to grind to label us anything but straightline Theosophists, resolutely declining any connection with any theosophical organization, but always in full sympathy with our fellow-Theosophists of all organizations or of none.”

      Hence the ULT has no-one with the right or ability to claim that either the ULT as a whole or any individual ULT Lodge supports the ITC, yet any and every ULT associate would be quite correct in stating that the ULT does not and cannot support either the ITC or any other Theosophical organisation. As was said in the article, associates in their capacity as INDIVIDUALS can and do support whatever or whoever they like but care must always be taken to ensure that the impression is never given, whether purposely or otherwise, that the ULT ITSELF supports and endorses such and such a thing. If you still believe that we are inaccurate and going against the Declaration in saying this, we would suggest that you write a letter to the Parent Lodge in Los Angeles asking them about it.

      Criticism of the ITC is not “about Theosophists competing with one another for the best understanding of the philosophy.” I’m sure all of us would agree that our understanding of the Esoteric Philosophy is as yet very imperfect. Criticism of the ITC is not criticism of the ITC per se but of its PRESENT BASIS in which, as said in the article, “it promulgates the notion of all forms and versions of “Theosophy” being equal and valid and the necessity of Theosophists accepting, tolerating, respecting, or even celebrating anything and everything which calls itself “Theosophy” as being legitimate, all in the name of “Unity.””

      While none will claim a perfect understanding of the philosophy, even a child can readily see that some of the things which have been promoted as the “Theosophy of the Masters” since the time of H.P. Blavatsky and William Q. Judge are undeniably diametrically opposed to the work and teachings and mission of the actual Masters and Their Messengers.

      Take, just as a brief example, the teachings about a personal God, a personal “Lord Christ” and his supposed Second Coming, the establishment of a purported “theosophical church” called the Liberal Catholic Church, which affirms the genuineness of the apostolic succession of the Roman Catholic Church, and the teaching of “Bishop” C.W. Leadbeater about the power of confessing one’s sins to the priests who then have the power to absolve the penitent of their wrongdoing (see “The Case against C.W. Leadbeater” at https://blavatskytheosophy.com/the-case-against-c-w-leadbeater/ for more). These things, amongst many others, are still published, presented, and promoted as “Theosophy” today, within “The Theosophical Society – Adyar.” The other two Theosophical Societies – Point Loma and Pasadena – have their own distortions and claims. Do you really expect us to ignore all of this or to support it or to turn a blind eye to it as if it doesn’t really matter?

      Take a look at “The Impossible Dream of Theosophical Unity” at https://blavatskytheosophy.com/the-impossible-dream-of-theosophical-unity/. We would be interested to know how you respond to it. We are most definitely not against Theosophical Unity but are all for it. What we are against is the attempt to bring about an external and thus ultimately superficial unity through misguided compromise and whitewashing of what HPB did not hesitate to term “Pseudo-Theosophy.”

      The tone of our articles is mild and moderate in comparison with many of the writings of Robert Crosbie and his colleagues in early issues of “Theosophy” Magazine. Take his series “Masters and Their Message” as a case in point. If you read the books “The Theosophical Movement 1875-1925” and “The Theosophical Movement 1875-1950” (which are available, at least the latter, from most ULT Lodges) you will find things much more direct, hard-hitting, and critical, than anything we’ve ever written on here.

      As two examples of things which can be found in “Theosophy” magazine and which are also very relevant to the matters being discussed here, we quote the following for your thought and consideration:

      – – –

      Why does not U.L.T. “fraternize” with the various Theosophical societies? Would not H.P.B., Mr. Judge and Mr. Crosbie do so, if they were alive now?

      (a) Why should U.L.T. “fraternize” with various “Theosophical” societies? It has its Declaration and anyone wishing to conform to that Declaration may do so. On that basis U.L.T. welcomes and opens its doors to all. The U.L.T. Theosophist recognizes only the teachings given by H.P.B. and W.Q.J., unchanged and without additions. To him “fraternizing” would mean “compromising,” and there can be no compromises made with Truth. The teachings are true or false; our Declaration is a true basis or a false one. The road to Universal Brotherhood is a through street and the real Theosophist has no time for by-paths. Fraternizing would mean meeting other societies halfway by partially accepting their basis for union – a basis which is not in sympathy with our similarity of aim, purpose, and teaching.

      Theosophical Truths are Universal Truths, and it is the desire of U.L.T. to spread those truths to every heart. It can do no more than to keep the teachings pure and to open its portals to all. The ideals of the Movement are the ideals of the individual. The individual can only study, live the life, and promulgate the doctrine. His goal is clear and pure and lies beyond any mixed, adulterated Theosophy.

      The various sects have only a partial knowledge of Theosophy. The rest has been supplied by a leader who claims to be a successor and who claims to have the authority to improve upon the teachings. Then with a self-interested motive and speculations of his own, he draws around him a following. He puts himself between the followers and the Truth and the result is a constant change of aim, purpose, and teaching.

      The U.L.T. makes no alliances with corrupted teachings. It is loyal to the great Founders of the Theosophical Movement, and does not concern itself with dissensions or differences of opinion. It has as its object Universal Brotherhood and therefore includes all sects, morally fraternizing, therefore, with any person or group of persons sincerely working to benefit mankind.

      (b) The reason we could not “fraternize” with those whose “aim, purpose, and teaching” is not ours is because there is no common ground or basis for intercourse. The association would in fact hinder us in trying to achieve our object. Impersonality, and self-seeking cannot work hand in hand. If two groups holding these respective views were to try to work together, neither one would benefit from the alliance and sooner or later both would be wrecked, as a group or organization. It would indeed be difficult for most of us to hold to our declaration and objects if we were to associate continually with groups holding adverse policies. Perhaps we can find something of significance in what H.P.B. says of “prejudice”: “It is far different from what we commonly term antipathy or sympathy. We are at first irresistibly or unwittingly drawn within its dark circle by that peculiar influence, that powerful current of magnetism which emanates from ideas as well as from physical bodies. It is rare that men regard a thing in either its true or false light, accepting the conclusion by the free action of their own judgment. Quite the reverse. The conclusion is more commonly reached by blindly adopting the opinion current at the hour among those with whom they associate.”

      Would not H.P.B. and Mr. Judge, and Mr. Crosbie “fraternize” with those organizations? We think not. While it is true H.P.B. did become associated with the Spiritualists before the T.S. was established, it was not with the intention of establishing “fraternal” relations with the policy or methods of the Spiritualists as a group – in fact, they had no definite policy. H.P.B. with her objects definitely in mind was merely seeking material with which to begin the construction of the T.S. There was no hesitancy over severing relations when the policies of the two groups openly clashed. This is also true in the separation of the American Theosophists from those of Europe and India during Mr. Judge’s experience. Mr. Crosbie localized his efforts in the small group whose views coincided with his, in the formation of the U.L.T. In view of these historic occurrences perhaps we can safely say that they would not closely ally themselves with any of the Theosophical Societies now extant, although they would never be opposed to an individual in them.

      (“Theosophy” Vol. XXI, p. 358-360, June 1933)

      – – –

      In all these bodies [i.e. the various Theosophical groups and organisations], as well as outside them, are students who know the Truth, both of the philosophy and of history. They are aware of, and for themselves accept and study the Message of H.P.B. But what are they doing in regard to the corruptions daily presented as Theosophy? What are they doing with respect to the extravagant claims daily being heralded by exponents whom these students know to be false to the philosophy, false to their pledges, false to the truths of Theosophical history? The answer is, Nothing. Are not all such, however sincere, in fact unfaithful stewards? Is it true Brotherhood to permit to be taught as Theosophy that which one knows to be spurious, and keep silent? Is it true tolerance to work in the company of those who daily by their acts, their teachings, their statements, throw mud on the true Teachers, and keep silent?

      Every Theosophist who believes it is enough for himself to know the true, for himself to eschew the false, and who is content to permit the huckster, the trader, the charlatan and the sectarian to defile and make mock of Messenger and Message, to delude and mislead the ignorant and innocent inquirer – without doing his utmost to expose the counterfeit and the fraud, is particeps criminis, is accessory to the blackest of crimes – the perversion of the pure teachings of the White Lodge into an instrument of Black Magic. It has been done before in the case of every great Message. It is in process before our eyes in the present state of the Theosophical Movement of our times. More and more are practices being inculcated as theosophical which H.P.B. and her Masters denounced unsparingly. More and more are teachings being given currency as Theosophy which are the antithesis of what she and her Masters gave out. More and more sectarianism, with all its evil brood, is being spread and practiced as The Path.

      For the true Theosophist there can no more be compromise with pseudo-Theosophy and pseudo-Theosophical practices and practitioners than such compromise would be possible to H.P.B. and her Masters. Can anyone soever imagine H.P.B. compromising with the spurious teachings and spurious growths rampant on every hand in the name of Theosophy? Spiritualism, necromancy, hatha yoga, popery, priestcraft, sectarianism and psychism, practiced or promulgated under their own colors by those who believe in them and prefer them, are one thing. But when these things are taught and presented as Theosophy and as under the sanctions of H.P.B. and her Masters, every Theosophist who knows the facts is in honor bound to fight the fraud to the utmost extent of his powers.

      It is to be remembered that no religion has ever been corrupted from without. The poison has always proceeded from within. Under cover of the True, the False is disseminated until the substitution is complete. All the external foes of Theosophy and the Theosophical Movement are powerless to destroy or to pervert. As of old, the real enemies are within the household of the faith. Sectarianism and corruption go hand in hand and their work is already well under way. They must be opposed instantly and constantly by all well-disposed and loyal students of the great message of H.P.B. The times call for a closer alliance among all those who would keep the faith and restore the Movement to its original purity and catholicity.

      (“Theosophy” Vol. XII, p. 492-493, article “Sectarianism among Theosophists”)

      – – –

      Of course, those passages could themselves be misinterpreted as “sectarian” by those who have not yet clearly acquainted themselves with the firm positions taken about things by HPB and her Adept Teachers.

      To conclude, you shared that “There is a feeling of sadness in my heart, lingering long after having finished reading an article from this website.”

      We are very sorry to hear this and as we do not intend to dilute our work to satisfy a handful of people, the only suggestion we can think of at present is that maybe it’s best that you don’t keep visiting the website, as we sincerely do not wish to cause lingering feelings of sadness to anyone.

      People from various different countries and backgrounds have become associates and actively and enthusiastically involved in the work of the ULT as a result of this site and a result of the way that things are written and presented on here. Our manner of working may not appeal to everyone and we understand, accept, and appreciate this. There is room in this world, as in the ULT, for numerous manners and methods of approach to the dissemination of Pure Theosophy. What doesn’t feel right to one person may feel very right and be of great and lasting help to another. No one method is to be insisted upon. If Truth is held up above all else then all is well.

      • MONA: If ULT does not have an official spokesperson to claim support of ITC, who then is claiming that it does not support ITC?

        RESPONSE: It is a simple statement of fact that ULT cannot be said to support anything but the original writings of Theosophy. What any individual associate of ULT decides is completely up to that individual.

        MONA: I never thought about Theosophist competing with one another for the best understanding of the philosophy. This seems to belong to the personal not universal. It feels very separate and anti-Theosophical. Isn’t it an opportunity that should never be lost,to share and debate in solidarity?

        RESPONSE: It is not a competition; again a simple statement of fact that ULT offers the original writings of Theosophy; any individual may study and follow any writings of that individual’s choice; it is an individual choice. But if one studies the original writings, there can be no debate on what is the original or not, while respect is still given to those who chose to study the writings that appeal to them but it cannot be debated.

        MONA: Please stop being angry and frightened. It permeates and poisons all you write and is felt by the likes of me and others. I am telling you this to help you find your heart as well as your head. Please stop. It is hurtful to the movement as a whole and is totally unnecessary.

        RESPONSE: How can the sincere words of someone be labeled angry and fearful, someone who only wants others to understand there is a choice to be made in what is recognized as Theosophy? It is my experience that no real student of Theosophy is either angry or fearful but sad and confused that so many good minds can accept as reasonable that the Masters would give out one idea (No personal God) and then the same Masters (through later claims of students) would teach of such a personal god. It would be helpful to know how many people have left their original groups they were with after they have read the original writings of Theosophy.

        MONA: I wish you had meet Joe Pope out of NY ULT. I’m sure you’ve heard his name. He was welcoming and generous with all who entered the Lodge. No one felt anything but friendship around him. One of the most important things he ever said to me was about devotion. I was worried about my sister who was a Mormon. Joe said that the development of devotion itself was what was important, not the object of the devotion.

        RESPONSE: I too appreciated Joe Pope. And you describe him well except you interpret his friendliness and remarks about devotion as acceptance of the ideas of others, no matter how far they strayed from pure Theosophy. Indeed he was friendly and kind and courteous. And he was understanding, reminding you that your sister’s devotion and respect for what she was learning mattered more than what she was devoted to. But he never strayed from the original writings and gave all his energy to that effort, the effort only found in ULT at present.

        Many of us, ULT students, have attended ITC meetings, given talks and even served on the Board of Directors. Indeed it was ULT students who began the summer gatherings that has become ITC. But as more groups joined in the effort, it became more and more obvious to us that we could not sit in silence when truly false statements were made. It was said at the ITC in Julian, California, that there was no difference between the Theosophy of H.P.B. and Annie Besant and Charles Leadbetter. If one does not see the falsity of that statement, one has never studied the original writings. It was after that incident, given in a major address by the President of The Theosophical Society in America, that I resigned from the Board of Directors.

        It is as simple as that. If the Masters said one thing as the original message and then said the opposite in later offerings then who wants to study the words of such Masters?

      • Maybe I’m missing something here in the responses to Mona’s post. I carefully read all replies and I am still left with an empty vase?

        Mona, on one hand, expressed, from the heart, with great passion, her concern as a devoted student of ULT, as to why other ULT members resent anyone’s involvement with other organizations who earnestly join in the effort to “disseminate” Theosophy.

        On the other hand, I read the impersonal regurgitation of theosophical articles and passages that any seasoned student of Theosophy is all so well aware of. So, nothing new there to this student of 31 years.

        Let’s take a look at the Declaration of Theosophy again, because I am concerned with the idea of Dissemination, since this, to me, is the main point of address.

        As written:

        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.

        Okay, we are all in agreement with this because this specifically addresses one’s independent devotion to the great Founders.

        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.

        Again, we would agree that the three Fundamentals is that very work which needs to be disseminated and is the underlying basis for Theosophy and that which students aim to exemplify.

        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.

        Now, this seems to be the focus in the replies to Mona’s post. Similarity of teaching! It is not, however, the point that Mona was referring to, as far as I understood it to be. The focus was on the ’dissemination’ of Theosophy. If my Greek serves me well, meaning “Theo” or god-like and “sophy” or study of. The study of that which is Divine.

        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.

        This clearly regards all, who are engaged in the true service of Humanity, as Theosophists. Without distinction of organization mentioned here, as well. Mona’s point was clearly directed to those organizations who make the effort to plant the seeds in the minds of those who first come to Theosophical gatherings in search of truth and it is those individuals and organizations that help disseminate these ideas. It is then left to those inquisitive souls, to further their knowledge and understanding and find ULT if they wish to study the original teachings. So our presence and involvement is critical from the start.

        From what I have read on “Disseminate”, it’s a verb (used with object), disseminated, disseminating. 1. to scatter or spread widely, as though sowing seed; promulgate extensively; broadcast; disperse: to disseminate information about something. Origin of disseminate Expand.

        I, for one, see nothing wrong in the unifying effort made by other organizations or individuals to help bring back those searching souls who were once devoted members of our theosophical family of long ago. Hopefully, with our involvement and guidance at the threshold, they will recognize the path that we intuitively became to know, as students of ULT, to be the true path and join us in similarity of aim, purpose and teaching.

  4. Thank you for posting my comment.
    I will however continue to read articles on this web site. As I said before the research and information gathered is very much appreciated.
    I have only studied the original teachings so the insights regarding the history of the movements and the varied personages involved and how they deviated from the original message, is very informative and important so that similar mistakes are not repeated.
    I am not a supporter or detractor of ITC. I have never attended one nor plan to any time in the near future. It is only on principle that object to undercurrents of discrimination as to organization. And of course this is not an official ULT site so any and all opinions are of a personal nature. Even though the Declaration of ULT is very clear, interpretation may still exist between devoted members.

    Interpretation is simply an individuals effort regarding the attempt to clearly understand, develop, and assimilate the Original Teachings. As students, our interpretation is simply rudimentary. This cannot be stressed enough. Personal and private opinions aren’t to be accepted as authority, this we may all agree upon as we are not of same mind but of similar purpose, devoted to the Cause of Masters.

    Brotherhood and unity the first fundamental of all Esoteric Traditions.

%d bloggers like this: