Re: ES & TS
Apr 11, 1998 02:43 PM
by M K Ramadoss
Here is a msg from theos-l being reposted for the benefit of many new
subscribers who may not seen it. It is very well written summary.
>Date: Tue, 23 Apr 1996 16:43:02 -0700
>From: Jerry Hejka-Ekins <firstname.lastname@example.org>
>To: email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org
>Subject: re: the ES
>In my time with the T.S. I too have known many people who were
>members of the E.S. Some of them were people who I really loved
>and cared for and others were people I felt were simply
>"ego-tripping". They were all very sincere and veru dedicated.
>But their Dedication was primarily to the Esoteric Section and
>it's views of it's own agenda and needs.
On the other hand, the ES is supposed to be dedicated to the
needs of the TS. But here is where I think the SNAFU set in:
After the Judge split, the Adyar TS fell into complete control of
Annie Besant who kept the organization at a low key until Olcott
died. Remember, Olcott did not approve of the ES, and was afraid
that his successor might gain control of both the Presidency of
the TS and the Outer Headship of the ES, thus giving that person
too much power. Olcott's worst fear is, of course, what
But when Besant attained the Presidency in 1907, she was
already running out of new material to give to her ES students.
Between 1895 and 1907 she wrote commentaries on HPB's ES
Instructions. She got a lot of mileage out of them, and even
spun of a book or two (~The Ancient Wisdom~ and ~A Study in
Consciousness~). But after a while, endless playing off of the
six ES Instructions gets rather old, and evidently Besant lacked
the knowledge (or access to it) to create new ES Instructions
that would expand upon and go more deeply into the body of
teachings already extant. My sense of HPB's original
Instructions is that they were very quickly moving towards some
very profound correlations that would have introduced a whole
deeper layer of study and insight.
Though Besant (IMO) lacked the knowledge to go more deeply
into the Theosophical teachings, she did have an associate who
had the imagination to take these teachings into a very different
direction. In 1908, Besant brought exiled CW Leadbeater back
into the ES fold, though it was under the protest of some of the
most important members. Among others, A.P. Sinnett, G.R.S. Mead,
and Bertram Keightley left the TS in protest to CWL's
Therefore, CWL with the help of GS Arundale became the
source for the new ES revelations, that included the
establishment of a new religion (Liberal Catholic Church) as a
vehicle for the return of the Christ (Krishnamurti), and a whole
litany of ceremonies for the creation of spiritual forms for the
spiritual upliftment of the world (e.g. Co-Masonry and the
Egyptian Rite). That early material speaks endlessly of the
initiations of CWL, GSA, AB, K, not to mention Oscar Kollestrom.
Revelations from the Maitreya (an individual in neo-theosophy),
M., KH, and the Maha Chohan himself praising the work of the
Theosophical Workers. When this became tiresome, Besant was
always at hand to answer the latest anti-Leadbeater flair up, and
to expel members and Lodges who didn't play her game. Thus, the
new ES material came to replace the rather heady philosophical
discussions written in HPB's day.
By 1929, Krishnamurti's role as the world teacher put into
obscuration the original intents of the TS as outlined in HPB's
writings, and clearly shown in the Mahatma Letters. The
Theosophical Society was no longer a provocative and progressive
philosophical school, but became a cult dedicated to the
adoration of its World Teacher. With Krishnamurti in the
foreground, there was no longer a need for an ES, so it was
closed. But Krishnamurti's resignation in 1930 necessitated its
reopening after only a year.
By this time, AB and CWL were getting old. CWL was already
withdrawing into his LCC activities in Australia--becoming more
are more remote from the TS. This transition had been building
up for some time, so C. Jinarajadasa became more and more
involved in the continuation of the ES. With the death of CWL in
1934, CJ was on his own to produce new ES material--but
apparently he lacked CWL's vivid and detailed imagination.
Arundale was still supplying some material, but with the loss of
Krishnamurti, things were much less exciting, and K's defection
was hard to explain.
Fortunately, the war in Europe saved good ol' CJ from having
to dwell upon the Krishnamurti question. With the new political
developments, he was able to focus attention on a new subject--
the infiltration of the Black magicians into the TS and world
affairs. Black magicians were everywhere. They were more
numerous than cockroaches in a Calcutta roadside kitchen, and
they were the blame for every change that did not meet with CJ's
personal approval. Not only were the Black Magicians influencing
European and American political leaders, but even worse, they
created Jazz and Modern Art! Even Mahatma Gandhi was influenced
by Black Magicians--how else can you explain why he did not agree
with Besant's plans for India? ES material during this period
was utterly pre-occupied with the plots of Black Magicians, and
CJ had lots of political advice concerning who were the good guys
and who where the badies on the political scene.
Sri Ram took over in 1954, and the ES material changed again
to a banal and devotional form of Hinduism, but became a little
more intellectual when Taimni finally took over. Now it appears
that Radha has shifted the ES towards an even more contentless
Krishnamurtisque "truth in within yourself" philosophy.
Yet, through this whole incredible history, from 1895
onwards, the ES was responsible for the well being of the TS.
ES Members were expected to be active in TS Lodges and to make
sure that they stayed on the right track. But what is the "right
track" today? Arundale abandoned all mention of Krishnamurti
once the World Teacher resigned his post. CW Leadbeater's
writings remained popular from the 1930's through the 60's, and
became the trademark of Adyar Theosophy. But with the
publication of Tillett's ~The Elder Brother,~ CWL is no longer
realistically defensible, and his writing are being de-
emphasized. Blavatsky and her original program was long ago
abandoned to lip service. Further, the ES today has grown so
weak that it can no longer fill its role as guardian of the TS.
For the first time, the Lodges are left without direction and
content. Some Lodges have occupied themselves with Sufi dancing,
others with Alice Bailey, others with Sai Baba, others with the
When I first joined theos-l over two years ago, one of the
first messages I recall was a member saying that the TS has no
dogma--therefore no teachings. That the TS has no dogma is
happily correct, after a period of covert dogma from 1910 to
1970. But unhappily, he was also correct that the TS has no
teachings. For they were abandoned almost 90 years ago for a new
set of teachings that blew up in everyone's face in 1930. And
the dust is still yet to clear.
So, Alexis, sadly, I have to agree with you. The ES had a
negative impact on the TS because it veered from the original
aims, and never found its way back. Sincere and devoted workers
with the best of motivations can work to further the aims of the
most ill conceived plans as well as the productive ones. IMO,
its time to start over.
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