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Feb 21, 1994 02:16 PM
by Arvind Kumar


Thanks for the detailed post on Neptune; it is great to have
access to people like you, Jerry H-E and others via this listserv
for almost instantaneous response to questions related to HPB's


I have only finished about one third of ISM but hope to finish
the rest of it soon.  It certainly gives a very different
perspective on the Masters.  I am still confused about where
you are located though.  If you are in Virginia, how can
you be in the neighborhood of the metro Boston area; aren't
there a couple of states in between Virginia and MA?  Admittedly
my knowledge of geography is poor and I have not attempted to
consult a map of the US (except that found in the phone book!)
but'd appreciate if you can clarify the situation.  Also, you
did not respond to my question about Swami Satchitananda.. is
he the one with the flowing long beard and at least one video
on Hatha Yoga?

Jerry H-E

I have too much to write but I probably have to pare my efforts
as well due to the 'overload' situation at my work.  I will be
on a three day training course off-site on Feb 23, 24, 25 but
will hopefully be able to check my e-mail during this time.

I have great
enthusiasm for this work though, as you can judge by the fact that
I have chosen to come to my office today to write this down,
even though it is a holiday here (this probably is the first
such happenning for me in several years, and it was really made
easier because of the fact that Rita did not have a holiday
today otherwise we'd probably be watching a movie and eating
out soemwhere and having several 'family meetings'!)

I read also the first two chapters of THE ELDER BROTHER over the
weekend and have gained fresh insights into the workings of the
mind of Leadbeater.  We all have our shortcomings and he
certainly was no exception.  One thing I should point out about
AS and the Bailey writings which strikes me as totally different
from the many other theosophical movements is the utter lack of
discussion of the personality aspects of Bailey or other teachers
discussed by Bailey.  The focus in AS is on teaching alone, and
'impersonality', although the study of the teachings of other
disciples/initiates down the ages is greatly encouraged.  BTW,
do you know anything about Andrew Jackson, mentioned by Tillet,
as the only other person apart from AAB to have supplied a
comprehensive view of the universe?

I also feel embarrased by my discovery over the weekend
on the very first page, first paragraph of the text proper
in TCF (p.3):

"The teaching which is given in this Treatise on Cosmic Fire
might be formulated in the following terms.  These postulates
are simply extensions of the three fundamentals to be found
in the Proem in the first volume of the
Secret Doctrine by HPB. Students are recommended to study them
carefully; in this way their understanding of the Treatise will
be greatly aided.

I. There is one Boundless Immutable Principle; One Absolute
Reality which antecedes all manifested conditioned Being.
It is beyond the range and reach of any human thought
or expression. [Explanation of this by AAB follows]
II. There is a basic law called the Law of Periodicity,
[Explanation of this by AAB follows here]
III.All souls are identical with the Oversoul.
[Explanation by AAB]"

Based on the above, it would appear as if TCF is an 'expansion' of
TSD, not SD. I think we may never find out the reference to the
quote from HPB on the 'psychological key' to SD (unless
someone like Mr. Tillet decides to undertake a thorough research
on AAB'; actually I'd myself like to do this but the time is
not right as yet for me).  On p.246 of AAB's autobiography, in
the section on 'My Work' by DK, it says towards the bottom of the

"...TCF..was an expansion of the teaching given in TSD on the
three fires - electric fire, solar fire and fire by friction
- and it was an awaited sequence.  It also presented the
psychological key to TSD and is intended to offer study to
disciples and initiates at the close of this century and the
beginning of the next century, up until 2025."

Anyways, I read the first 76 pages (understood perhaps a fraction
of the material; no different than the case when I was reading TSD)
and will go back to one of your previous messages where you had
given some comments on these to see if I can add anything.

I was talking to a friend of mine the other day (Tom Koshy, works
for MCI and has been into Ancient Wisdom for a long time) regarding
the difference in writing styles of HPB and AAB, and he commented
that KH in one of the Mahatma letters had lamented that "HPB is
being too intellectual... I wish she would stop worrying about
quoting so many authors and get on with the transmission of the
pure teaching" (Tom said something like this, his exact words I
donot remember and of course he did not give me any reference; I
am reproducing this 'paraphrase' of what KH said to see if you
or anyone else reading this can remember this type of a quote by
KH).  Tom and I both have benefited by reading Bailey and are
beginner students of HPB.

>      Thanks for the catalogue upload.  They seem to have
> collected together everything available that relates to the more
> sensational side of the occult.  I wonder if this is part of the
> "Kaos Magic" group in or near Santa Barbara.  Several years ago,
> a former student went up there to check them out and gave a
> report on them for the Los Angeles Center for Theosophic Studies
> (L.A.C.T.S.).  He is a pretty open and liberal person, but found
> the group a bit too kinky even for him.  The sex magic was a bit
> too strange for his sensibilities.

I donot know much about Tyagi but the group of
which he is a part talk about Dion Fortune and her teachings, among
other things.  I have several of Dion's books but have read none of
them.  Have you read any of her books?  Any comments on her?
>      As for pursuing esotericism as a full time occupation in
> academia, this is very unlikely.  But Professors who are
> interested in this find ways to express their interests
> indirectly.

What about Cal Ins for Integral Studies and the JFK school
somewhere near LA?  You are right, it is kind of late for
me to start on a PhD (I did 36 hours of course work towards
a PhD in Operations Research after my MS a long time back
in 1976 and actually have no interest to pursue that, even
if I was allowed to take advantage of my previous work). I
am much more interested in doing something like what Tillet
did, or what Paul is doing, or even just having the
chance to sit all day at home and study HPB/AAB and write
'hints' for others if some ideas come to my mind.

I have a related question about the way the great Lord Buddha
went about 'begging' for food most of his life after having
renounced the 'golden shackles' of his palace.  What
principle does that illustrate?  Perhaps it is not valid
today i.e. it is better to earn one's livelihood by
providing a 'recognized' service rather than by begging in the
present day world (for all disciple or initiates).

>      I don't know all of the people Dr. Santucci has put on as
> Associate Editors.  A couple are new, and live quite far away. I
> probably won't be meeting them until the next conference.  But
> here is some information on those whom I know:

Thanks a bunch for taking the time to write out this stuff. When
is the next conference at which most of these luminaries may be

>      So, if you want to pursue the occult academically, it would
> have to be done with a much more critical stance than you have
> been willing to demonstrate in our recent correspondence, and
> probably you would have to pursue areas of inquiry that you have
> shown little or no interest in.  Almost every academic I have ever
> met who is interested in the Theosophical Movement, have a
> historical and interdisciplinary interest in it.  They look at the
> origins and cross fertilization of ideas.  The existence of the
> Masters (and most everything else that is basic to the TM) is not
> accepted at face value as being true--at least not as promoted by
> theosophical organizations.  In other words, I suspect you might
> find academia a bit disappointing.

You are right, I donot have much interest in pursuing esotericism
on an intellectual basis exclusively.  But I simply love the chance
to read unbiased, dispassionate look at various philosophies or
concepts, as seems to be happening in JTH.  You get all viewpoints
about various systems and concepts, and this can't but lead to
a more balanced view of life.  Rule 9 (out of the 14 rules of
initiation from Initiation, Human and Solar) expresses a similar
thing beautifully when it exhorts us to ' not have any extreme or
dogmatic views, as they take away the synthetic life of humanity'.

>      Academics who publish books in the occult field, usually do
> so on the side.  The tone of these works are more objective and
> usually unacceptable to the organizations written about.  It is not
> that Academia is closed to the occult per se--they are just closed
> to anything that is expressed in a religious paradigm.  Blind
> faith, rituals etc. all are part of a greater paradigm that assumes
> an authoritative hierarchy.  Humanity has been victim to this
> paradigm for thousands of years and has suffered for it with the
> marginalization of women and other "minorities."  Ironically,
> Blavatsky worked to break this paradigm, but her followers worked
> even harder to reinstitute it.  Now, very few people are even aware
> of H.P.B.'s stance and efforts.

I see what you are saying, and feel that one worthwhile project
may be to take portions of AAB teachings and show them
how they relate to other religions or teaching.  This type of thing
has probably been done for HPB's teachings; she herself did a
great part of this type of work.

>      One way to pursue esotericism professionally independently of
> academia, is simply to write and publish books.  Many people with
> little education do this.  Others who are educated, but hold
> beliefs that would be open to ridicule academically, also publish
> books through non academic presses.  Much of it is garbage from an
> academic point of view, but that doesn't affect the sale of these
> works.  There is a huge audience of readers of the occult who don't
> know the difference between psychic babblings and research.  They
> also couldn't care less.

I hope I donot have to resort to writing just for the sake
of making money but you are right, there seems to be an abundance
of experts these days who donot hesitate to write about anything,
whether they know the first thing about it or not.

Here are two more of your comments that I hope to address
rather quickly today before signing off:

1.This is the first time I have ever read that HPB said that
she didn't understand the teachings of her teachers.  Where did
you find such statements?  If HPB did not know what she was
talking about, she would have no credibility.  It is precisely
because she has been so often proven in light of later cultural
and scientific research that she did know what she was talking
about, she continues to hold our attention.  If AAB does not know
what she is talking about, then she has no credibility for me

     If AAB didn't understand what DK's teachings mean, what good
would it do us to read this material if we don't know what he
means either?  I read for the purpose of coming to an
understanding of the material.  Sometimes that is hard to do for
various reasons.  But if AAB obscured the material through her
lack of understanding of DK's teachings, then what chance do we
have of untangeling the mess?

My response:
I remember reading somewhere statements to this effect by both
AAB (in the autobiography) and HPB, probably in TSD.  I'll
have to look for these and point them out to you at some
future time.  One thing that comes to my mind right away is the
incident described in HPB's biography by Sylvia Cranston where
HPB was asking about the value of 'Pi' (3.141.....); she
wrote down what 'appeared before her eyes' but did not know
what it meant.  Does it ring a bell? If not, I'll give a ref
later.  More on this whole topic later...

2.     On another subject: Since the age of sixteen, my hobby has
been cooking Indian cuisine.  About a year ago, we became
stricter in our vegetarian diet, and are now vegan (no dairy
products or eggs), and find very little among my Indian recipes
that I can cook anymore.  If you have any Indian vegan recipes, I
would love to swap a few.

My response:
The part of India where I come from (Punjab, North India), 'vegan'
life is almost impossible!  We have become very conscious of what
we eat lately, and I am expected to be a vegan as per my doctor
(MD)'s advice.  The closest that I have come to vegan food
that somewhat resembles Indian cooking is the 'Macrobiotic' food.
Are you familiar with it?  There are several books of recipes for
this, including some written by MD's. I can give you a reference
or two, if you are interested.

Thanks for the invitation to meet with you at your house.  We'd
love to have you (or indeed anyone with theosophical type of
leanings) at our house.  What are your plans for vacation in the
near future?
We'd be gone from June 20 to July 31 to India but other than
that we'd love to host anyone who may be visiting the Dallas area
on business or pleasure.



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