responses to Jerry S.
Oct 30, 1995 05:21 AM
by Jerry Hejka-Ekins
>> >Personally, I prefer as much as possible not to lean on
>> >that which I cannot confirm.
Doesn't this attitude rule out the whole Secret Doctrine?
Doesn't this attitude rule out reincarnation?
(Alan has already admitted that it does for him).
Doesn't this attitude rule out planes, globes, bodies, etc?
I suppose it depends on what you mean by "lean" and
"confirm." By confirm, do you mean historically? Or do
you mean through personal experience (which we
already know can be mayavic itself)?
I suppose my answer depends upon what you mean by "rule
out." If by "rule out" you are suggesting a rejection of these
doctrines, then the answer is no. What is not (or cannot be)
confirmed is not necessarily rejected either.
How should we confirm the teachings given in the SD to our own
I have noticed that HPB gives much more space in her
writings to advancing arguments for the validity of her doctrines
then she gives for explaining them in the first place. To me,
this is an obvious indication that she was trying to advance and
establish a philosophical system, as opposed to giving out
revelation. It always seemed to me that if she promulgating a
revelation (as did CWL for instance), all she had to do was
expound the doctrines in the name of the Masters, or on the
authority of her own 'superior spiritual perceptions." Instead,
she quoted; analyzed; argued with; and advanced as supporting
evidence, endless passages from the world's religious and
philosophical systems as well as contemporary science. I believe
that it was HPB's intention that her readers use this supportive
material to analyze her arguments; make their own inquiries into
the fields of science, philosophy and religion, according to
their own experience and common sense; and come to their own
conclusions concerning her arguments. For "spiritual
development," I think HPB had very different ideas than what are
promoted today. Rather than meditation and psychic development,
HPB promoted the development of discrimination skills--or what we
call today "critical thinking skills." As mundane as these
skills may seem, they are scarcely developed among the general
population, let alone among most students of the occult (who
often appear to be ever more credulous than the general
population). HPB seems to be arguing that one is not going to
come to any deeper realizations in the study of occultism until
one learns to think critically. Intuition is not the answer here
either, because in HPB's Jnana yoga system, intuition must be
developed upon a foundation of those "discrimination skills."
Jerry HE:<I agree with you here in principle. However, your
quote did not come from me. It sounds very much like something
that Eldon would write, >
Sorry. I was referring, of course, to the MLs where the
idea is put forth that an Adept is such only when consciousness
is shifted away from the human to something higher. It seems
to me that a "lower" Adept (I am assuming that even an Adept has
to start somewhere) could be such at times, and then get material
through kama-manas once in awhile by mistake. I have no idea
if this explains CWL, but I think its a possibility and also I
find it hard to believe that all Adepts are perfect because they
are, after all, still human.
According to those old time ES members who were around when
CWL was still alive (I used to know a lot of them who lived in
Los Angeles and Ojai in order to be close to Krotona, but most of
them are dead now), when CWL became an "Adept," he was in a high
state of spiritual consciousness all of the time. Since
(according to the old timers) an Adept is one who has passed
their fourth initiation, I guess an Adept starts with the first
initiation and advances in spiritual powers as she moves towards
the fourth. Since CWL was also in daily contact with the
Masters, it also seems that he must have had ample opportunity to
get confirmation of what he was teaching. Since CWL was an
Adept, he was further along the path than HPB, thus his spiritual
powers and knowledge of the teachings should have been superior
to HPB's. Therefore, granting human error to CWL, yet accepting
for the moment his claims, I would still expect his writings to
be far superior to HPB's. After all, an Adept is very close to
being on equal footing with the Masters themselves.
Now let's look at this another way and ask the question: how
do we know that CWL had any psychic abilities whatsoever? Since
the source of CWL's information is from his clairvoyance and from
the Masters, the question of his spiritual powers is an important
one. HPB, on the other hand, relied upon scientific,
philosophical and religious works to support her arguments;
therefore whether or not she had any psychic abilities is of no
importance (except for those who take her teachings as
revelation). Greg Tillett shows in his biography that CWL
consistently refused to be subjected to any testing conditions
that could have made such a determination. Since CWL's abilities
were never subjected to any test conditions, we have no
objectively collected data to use for making any determinations
concerning his abilities. In the case of his "Occult Chemistry"
articles, for instance, regardless of the supposed "scientific
method" of having two observers (CWL and AB), the whole thing
rests upon whether or not any superior perception was going on
here in the first place. Since, CWL refused to cooperate with
any test conditions, this can't be confirmed. This leads me to
my next question: what clairvoyant observations has CWL made that
might confirm any superior spiritual powers? When I ask this
question, the answer I almost invariably get from Adyar
theosophists is that CWL correctly predicted Krishnamurti to be
the "world teacher." This is not convincing evidence to me. It
seems to me that if one were to adopt most any ten year old boy;
daily tell him that he is the World Teacher for the next twenty-
five years; surround him with admiring devotees who believe him
to be this World Teacher; give him absolutely no vocational
training except to be a World Teacher; he is likely to grow up to
be some kind of "world teacher." I would have been more
surprised if in 1930, when he denied being this World Teacher, he
ran off and became anything other than a "world teacher."
Another answer I used to get was the confirmation of Dr.
Stephen Phillips dissertation that was supposed to confirm CWL's
observations. But, this deception has been exposed in recent
years so that even Dora Kunz in her recent talk to the Portland
Lodge (published in the AT) has backed off of "Occult Chemistry"
and suggests that CWL would not have wanted those writing
promoted--and blamed CJ for pushing them.
As for CWL's inner government, seven rays, initiations etc.
we have nothing but CWL's authority for. Can you think of any
clairvoyant observations, or revelations from the Masters made by
CWL that has been substantiated by independent evidence? Of
course, as I pointed out in the beginning, what is not confirmed
is not necessarily rejected either. But what about observations
that are later proven to be false though objective evidence? The
Mars civilization observations, for instance. Evidence such as
this gives ground to doubt CWL's abilities. Do you have any
objective evidence to confirm them?
So, in conclusion, it is not to me a matter of whether or
not the Masters, CWL or HPB were perfect. For me, it is a
question of the spirit which the information was given, and the
spirit which we were to accept the information. In the case of
the Mahatmas, we only have (for the most part) the letters to
Sinnett to go by. Considering the context and the circumstances
of those letters, not much can be proven or disproven by them for
us, since this was between the Mahatmas and APS. CWL's writings
ultimately rely on his authority (such as "occult chemistry") or
on the authority of the Masters (such as the "inner government"),
therefore are not testable except perhaps under the circumstances
that I proposed above. That leaves HPB's writings, which were
never intended as revelation, and never given under the authority
of any Master. It was always up to the individual reader to do
her own testing. Therefore, we much rely upon our own inner
authority and our skills in critical thinking to make any
determinations concerning the validity of HPB's writings.
||Please reply to: email@example.com ||and
CC to firstname.lastname@example.org
[Back to Top]
Dedicated to the Theosophical Philosophy and its Practical Application