Taking Theosophical ideas
into the 21st century
The Karma of an Occultist
When accused of fraud by Richard Hodgson in 1884,
H P Blavatsky reveals in a letter that she sees this
setback as Karma activated by the Path she has chosen
In this letter to Mrs Sinnett, H P blavatsky speaks of the accusations of fraud against her by Richard Hodgson and the forged letters by the Coulombs that Hodgson used to discredit her. She concludes that Hodgson had already made his mind up when he began his enquiry.
The series of events she outlines are so calamitous that she has resigned herself to accepting it all as Karma in action. She also says that anyone breaking new ground in esoteric thought must expect such setbacks. The damage has already been done and any attempt to defend herself will probably just make things worse.
Dated June 21.
No year given but possibly 1885
MY DEAR MRS. SINNETT,
The sight of your familiar hand-writing was a welcome one, indeed, and the contents of your letter still more so.
No, dear Mrs. Sinnett, I never thought that you could have ever believed that I played the tricks I am now accused of; neither you or any one of those who have Masters in their heart, not on their brains. Nevertheless, here I am, and stand accused, without any means to prove the contrary—of the most dirty, villainous deceptions, ever practiced by a half starved medium.
What can I, and what shall I do? Useless to either write, to persuade, or try to argue with people who are bound to believe me guilty, to change their opinion.
Let it be. The fuel in my heart is burnt to the last atom. Henceforth nothing is to be found in it but cold ashes. I have so suffered that I can suffer no more—I simply laugh at every new accusation.
“Notwithstanding the expertise” you say. Ah, they must be famous those experts, who found the Coulomb’s letters genuine. The whole world may bow before their decision and acuteness; but there is one person, at least, in this wide world, whom they can never convince that those stupid letters were written by me, and it is—H. P. Blavatsky.
Were the God of Israel and Moses, Mahomet and all the prophets, with Jesus and the Virgin Mary to boot, come and tell me that I have written one line of the infamous instructions to Coulomb—I would say then to their faces—“fiddlestick—I have not.”
Now, look here, I want you to know these facts. To this day I have never been allowed to see one single of those letters. Why could not Mr. Hodgson come and show me one of them at least. I suspect he has brought some of them to London—otherwise how could the expertise have been made? Why has he never showed me one, at least, at Adyar. And now, strong in their impunity the enemy has come out with still more letters and still more wonderful. I leave it to you and all of you to judge. There’s a letter shown, it seems, which they have not yet dared to publish, but the contents of which are summarised by Patterson in the April No. of the “C.C.M.” I am charged in it, and orally, of having written in 1880 a letter to the Coulomb, then at Ceylon, in which what I say to her shows plainly that from 1852 till 1872 for twenty odd years I have been otherwise occupied than with occult studies. Now who will ever believe—though even
my fraud in phenomena were to be believed by the whole creation, that in 1880, I, who was then at Bombay, bent upon proving the existence of Masters and with my plans of imposture—if I had any—well matured already, that I should have written such a letter to one whom I had hardly known 8 years before, who was no friend of mine, only a casual acquaintance with whom since I left Cairo in 1871 I had never had any correspondence, and whose very name I had forgotten! In that infamous letter I am made, nevertheless, to say that I had left my husband, loved and lived with a man (whose wife was my dearest friend and who died in 1870 -- a man who died too a year after his wife, and was buried by me at Alexandria) HAD three children by him and others! ! ! (sic) and etc. etc.,
winding the whole confession by asking her not to speak of me as she knew me, and so on: sentences strung together, to show that I had never known the Masters, never was in Tibet, was in fact an impostor.
It is only wasting time to argue upon all this. Those who believe the published letters genuine, have no reason to disbelieve in that one, and if there are such fools in this world—or people so cunning as to play the part of a fool—who can believe me capable of writing such a suicidal confession, to such a woman, a perfect stranger to me with the exception of a few weeks I had known her at
Cairo—well those people are welcome to do so.
The Masters being involved in this also, and I, determined to RATHER DIE A THOUSAND DEATHS than pronounce Their names, or answer questions about Them in a Court of law—what can I do? Ah, Mrs. Sinnett, the plotters proved too cunning, too crafty for the T.S. and especially for myself. She—that female fiend—knew well, I would and could not defend myself in a Court because of the accusations, of myself and friends, and the whole of my life being so intimately connected with the Mahatmas. And to think that I should have been such a fool as to have imagined, at one time, that in India it was as in Russia—that I could refuse to answer questions that were matters too sacred for me to discuss about in public.
I never knew that the judge could, if he chose, sentence me to prison for contempt of Court, unless I answered all the blackguardly questions about the Masters, the padris had prepared. Well and I kicked and clamoured to be allowed to go into Court to punish the villians and prove them liars. And now, I know better. I have learned, at my expense, that there is neither justice nor truth, nor charity for those who refuse to follow in the old tracks. I have learned the whole extent and magnitude of the conspiracy against the belief in the Mahatmas; it was a question of life or death to the Missions in India, and they thought that by killing me they would kill Theosophy.
They very nearly succeeded. At any rate they have succeeded in fooling Hume and the S.P.R. Poor Myers! and still more poor Hodgson! How terribly they will be laughed at some day. En attendant, they are busy crucifying me, it seems. Psychic research indeed. “Hodgson’s” research, rather! But pray tell me.
Is it the legal thing in England, to accuse publicly even a street sweeper in his absence?; without giving him the chance of saying one single word in his defence?; without letting him know even of what he is precisely accused of, or who it is who accuses him and is brought forward as chief evidence.
For I do not know the first word of all this. Hodgson came to Adyar; was received as a
friend; examined and cross-examined all whom he wanted to; the “boys” -- (the Hindus) at Adyar gave him all the information he needed. If he now finds discrepancies and contradictions in their statements, it only shows that feeling as they all did, that it was (in their sight) pure tomfoolery to doubt the phenomena and the Masters, they had not prepared themselves for the scientific
cross-examination, may have forgotten many of the circumstances; in short, that not feeling guilty and having never either been my confederates or my dupes, they had not rehearsed among themselves what they had to say, and thus, may very well have created suspicions in a prejudiced mind. But the whole trouble with us is, that we have never looked at Mr. Hodgson at first, as a prejudiced judge. Quite the reverse.
Well I was the first one to be punished for my confidence in his fairness. To think that while I was laid up on my death-bed, he came daily as a friend of the C. Oakleys, dined at the H.Q., abused and vilified, and betrayed me daily, in their presence—and that I never knew the truth till the end! Ask him—has he ever confronted me with my accusers? Has he ever tried to learn anything from me, or given me a chance of defence and explanation? NEVER.
He acted from the first day as though I was proven guilty beyond the shadow of a doubt. He played traitor with me; and acted not like any honest enquirer would have done, but as a Govt. prosecutor, an attorney general or whatever his legal names. And now behold the results. It is disgusting, SICKENING to see how he played into the hands of the padris and the padris in his. Oh for my prophetic soul! I did foresee all this, in London.
Enough. It is all dead and gone. Consummatum est.
Here I am. Where I shall go next, I know no more than the man in the moon. The only friend I have in life and death is poor little exiled Bowajee D. Nath in Europe; and poor dear Damodar—in Tibet. D. Nath keeps at the foot of my bed, awake for whole nights, mesmerising me, as prescribed by his Master. Why They should want to keep me still in life is some- thing too strange for me to comprehend; but Their ways are and always have
What good am I now for the Cause? Besmeared with mud, spat upon, doubted and suspected by the whole creation except a few—would I not do more good to the T.S. by dying than by living? Their will be done not mine.
Yours in life and always,
H. P. B.
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