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Re: Putting the Mahatma Letters to the Test

Jul 29, 1996 09:05 PM
by Maxim Osinovsky

On Mon, 29 Jul 1996, Paul M.M. Kieniewicz wrote:

> Could one put out (in installments) a red letter edition of the ML,
> analagous to the red letter edition of the Bible put out by the Jesus
> seminar. One could assign each paragraph a category:
> such an investigation -- standards of textual critisism,
> and then to abide by these standards regardless of which Theosophical
> persuasion they come from. The toughest part might be to agree to those
> standards.  But -- maybe it can be done.

Dear Paul,

This project might be of some value as a scholarly enterprise sponsored by 
the Department of Comparative Religion of a major research university,--but 
in the context of the theosophical movement, what's the good of it? If we 
are going to rely on the advice of our higher selves and our spiritual 
intuition, such issues as authenticity etc. of ML are not an issue at 
all. I cannot imagine myself agreeing with a learned opinion of an expert panel 
if it is not supported by my inner knowledge. On the other hand, if I 
smell a truth in a certain writing I do not need to verify the 
authorship--in fact I do not care about it.

Of course if theosophy is going to become another religion, then it may be 
important to establish a body of canonical scriptures...

It would be also a good idea to clarify the issue of objective vs. 
subjective proofs in spiritual disciplines, the Doctrine of Heart vs. 
the Doctrine of Heart. In particular, I am wondering if it is possible to 
anything at all in the spiritual disciplines. Is it possible that they are 
based on a different kind of paradigm? If so then the general tone of 
discussions on this email list may need to be changed. From a certain
perspective, many discussions going on the list are attempts at making 
sense of the illusion; indirectly, it may lead to true knowledge 
and liberation, too, but there are more direct ways to achieve that goal. 


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