Fifteen years ago in November the Theosophical
Society was started at the residence of H.P. Blavatsky in
Its center of activity was moved to India in pursuance of a deliberate purpose, a purpose which has been accomplished. That was to affect the thought of the age even if in doing so the Society itself should meet its death. There, too, the coroner's inquest was held, but by those who knew and feared, and who rendered the same verdict, rehashed last month by Major Twigg in Chicago, who informed astonished members and the world that the Society was dead in India. However, we may disbelieve his report in view of over 160 branches there and an imposing headquarters building erected upon 21 acres of land.
The wave of interest once more arose in the United States , and upon our records are 49 Branches reaching from the Atlantic to the Pacific Ocean, and after rolling over this country it suddenly raised itself in England where the sphinx of the Century, the original founder, took hold of the work in 1886. Then there was in England one Branch; now there are many, and the Society there owns a building for its centre of activity from which the wave is bound to roll again even unto far Cathay.
The work of those Fifteen years is not to be
measured by the number of Branches or by the three magazines carried on in the
three great countries,
, and the
It is to be measured by the thoughts of men. What are they now? They are full
of the great doctrines the Adepts said should be thoughts once more, drawn from
Brahmanism and Buddhism, - Karma and Reincarnation; with all the other
doctrines brought forward prominently to the Occident. It was once impossible
to find three men in
Who did this, How was it? You may say that it would have been anyway. But you cannot rub out an historical fact, nor postulate for the past reasons which are impossible by reason of their non-existence. There is a sequence in cause and effect that compels us to accept all the factors. The Theosophical Society for many years has been giving out theosophical ideas and language, and now the whole world is using them. These fifteen years of its work just fading out to reincarnate in its sixteenth have been of use to the world, even though the world should deny it.
And who has held the position for strong and weak members alike? Two figures, a woman and a man, Helena P. Blavatsky and Henry S. Olcott. His devotion and her tremendous strength have carried us to this point, and been the main agents for the influence our movement now has upon the thought of the world.
Such work can not be stayed or counteracted. The flimsy edifice of dogmatism is crumbling, the period of total disintegration is nearer, and our work has only begun. We have to hasten on with the materials for the future, so that ere the old structure is demolished the new one shall be ready for occupation. In five more years the Society will be of age, and must then be able to stand upon its feet, to think for itself, to act upon its convictions. Every day of this sixteenth year should be used wisely, earnestly, thoroughly, so that we shall be a able at each anniversary to feel that we have lived nearer to our highest ideals and at least tried to do the work which of all others humanity needs.
Path, December, 1890
FIVE YEARS FINISHED
About eighteen hundred and twenty-five days have slipped away since the PATH was started, and now we enter upon the sixth year without any prospect of having to abandon the work. If asked whether we feel satisfaction regarding the five years finished last month, the reply must be that it is too soon to look for satisfaction. A great many persons have praised and blamed the magazine and its editor; he himself never had any great concern with what people think about it, but an effort has always been made to present what we feel is true, free from bias or desire for gain. In the course of a few centuries and in other lives, it will be possible to find out just what influence the PATH has exerted. Just now we must content ourselves with offering thanks to those who with pen or money have assisted this most obscure journal, and to direct their attention to the new American theosophical year, which, beginning in April with the PATH"s, has so much of promise and potency for the future. Let us grasp the thread once more!
Path, April, 1891