VOS - 1927 Edn. Published in Peking
Nov 16, 1997 09:45 AM
by M K Ramadoss
Recently I came across the Voice of the Silence by HPB which was published
Peking, China in 1927. This is the first time I saw this edition and it
appears interesting. It has a frontispieces of Tashi Lama and has notes and
comments by Alice Leighton Cleather and Basil Crump.
I thought the following forward of the book may be interesting to some.
The present reprint has been undertaken largely because the original
edition has been out of print for many years, while those issued since
H.P.B.'s death in 1891 contain errors and even, in some cases, deliberate
alterations and omissions. Our aim has, therefore, been to restore to its
original integrity the most beautiful and poetical volume of H. P.
Blavatsky's great literary bequest. In so doing we have not only striven for
textual accuracy, but have sought to reproduce, as closely as local
facilities permitted, the size, cover and make-up of the original. The type
is a little larger, but the pagination is exactly the same.
The circumstances under which the opportunity arose to effect this work of
restoration were singularly fortunate. Reaching Peking in December, 1925,
after studying for seven. years in India, we were privileged to come into
close touch with H. H. the Tashi Lama, who had left Tibet in 1924 on a
special mission to China and Mongolia. (See Note p. 100). As members of his
Order, part of the work we undertook at his request for Buddhism was the
present reprint, as the only true exposition in English of the Heart
Doctrine of the Mahayana and its noble ideal of self-sacrifice for humanity.
During many years of study and initiation In Tibet, H.P.B. spent a
considerable time at Tashi-lhum-po, and knew the predecessor of the present
Tashi Lama very well. The Golden Precepts here translated by her for the use
of her pupils describe the processes of meditation and self-conquest by
which the earnest disciple may hope in the course of many incarnations to
become a Master of Wisdom, a Nirmanakaya who follows the Buddha on the Path
of Compassion for suffering humanity, and remains "unselfish to the endless
end." That such exalted beings exist as living men Is known to all Oriental
mystics who belong to the various schools of Yoga to which H. P. B. refers
in her Preface. In China and Mongolia, as in India, we find their existence
taken for granted by those who have any knowledge of the Esoteric Philosophy.
All the Tibetan terms and references have been checked with the assistance
of members of the Tashi Lama's suite, and our Chinese friends have also
given us every assistance; It is with very great satisfaction that we
publish this edition under the auspices of the Peking Buddhist Research
Society, who recognise in It the highest and most sacred teachings of their
own "contemplative" schools. It was not until we came in contact with
Chinese and Tibetan Buddhists that we obtained this striking confirmation of
the truth and value of H. P. Blavatsky's work.
The little book is now, therefore, reprinted with the strongest and most
authoritative Tibetan and Chinese endorsement. A few printer's errors in the
original have been corrected, but nothing else has been altered. In response
to the requests of many students we have ventured to add some notes and
comments on points which called for explanation in the course of study,
together with a good deal of Information collected from Chinese and Tibetan
sources. Having carefully verified the text, plates have been cast so as to
ensure the accuracy of any future Impressions.
Alice Leighton Cleather
(One of H.P.B.'s Pupils)
Peking, China, May, 1927.
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Dedicated to the Theosophical Philosophy and its Practical Application