Theosophy, Esoteric Zoroastrianism, and Remnants of ancient Aryan Indic Civilisation.
What is the meaning of Aryans?
The term Aryan was often used in the early history of the Theosophical Society, as it was its purpose to study “Aryan literature.” We have said, there is no trace of “white supremacy” or “superiority” in theosophical literature. What Aryan refer to in the literature, depending on the context, is as explained:
- Ethnology – The self-designation of a set of ethnic groups of Iranian, Indic and Nuristani peoples. It is not an evil word.
- Etymology – Meaning “noble,” and referring to a mindset, and the Rishi-yogins. One who was Aryan was one who followed the noble Vedic principles.
- Place – Āryāvarta, meaning the “abode of the Indo-Aryan or Indic peoples. It is a geographical term in classical Sanskrit literature. Ancient India is described as the “Alma-Mater,” of the Mysteries, or from which it chiefly proliferated, and not its ultimate origin.
Appearance of Aryans in The Secret Doctrine
“Of all the old races the Aryan Indian alone yet remains as the preserver of the old doctrine. It will one day rise again to its old heights of glory” (William Quan Judge, Ocean of Theosophy, p. 85).
“Egypt and India”, says H.P.B. in Isis Unveiled, Vol. I, p. 515:
“were the oldest in the group of nations; and (…) the Eastern Ethiopians — the mighty builders — had come from India as a matured people.”
Is Isis Unveiled overly praising, or simply giving facts. On page 435, it is said:
“(…) we are prepared to maintain that Egypt owes her civilization, commonwealth and arts — especially the art of building, to pre-Vedic India, and that it was a colony of the dark-skinned Aryans, or those whom Homer and Herodotus term the eastern Æthiopians, i.e., the inhabitants of Southern India, who brought to it their ready-made civilization.”
“We must remember in this connection, that the peoples of Southwestern and Western Asia, including the Medes, were all Aryans. It is yet far from being proved who were the original and primitive masters of India. That this period is now beyond the reach of documentary history, does not preclude the probability of our theory that it was the mighty race of builders, whether we call them Eastern Æthiopians, or dark-skinned Aryans (the word meaning simply “noble warrior,” a “brave”). They ruled supreme at one time over the whole of ancient India, enumerated later by Manu as the possession of those whom our scientists term the Sanskrit-speaking people.”
“(…) all the knowledge possessed by these different schools, whether Magian, Egyptian, or Jewish, was derived from India, or rather from both sides of the Himalayas. (Isis Unveiled, Vol. II, p. 361)
Does that sound any bit of racist, as it is often insinuated? H.P.B. believed the Hebrew system was influenced by the Zoroastrians and Babylonians:
“Babylonian civilization was neither born nor developed in that country. It was imported from India, and the importers were Brahmanical Hindus” (Isis Unveiled, I, p. 576). And again, “The Babylonians (…) got their wisdom and learning from India” (The Secret Doctrine, Vol. II, p. 566)
The Secret Doctrine attempts to put forth, a theory of evolution, based off of the doctrine of ancient schools and the collated records of ancient civilisation. It becomes apparent, that what Helena P. Blavatsky, M. and K.H. attempts to do, in the book, or has seemingly done, is reconstruct (?) the Wisdom-Tradition of the ancient Aryans of Airyanəm Vaējah (Airyanem Vaejah).
The secret doctrine is stated to be neither the property of the Zoroastrians, nor its origins. The Book of the Stanzas of Dzyan was accused of being lifted merely from the Siphra Dzeniouta and Alexander Csoma de Kőrös’s Kangyur. But for an author to have constructed such coherent mythology, The Secret Doctrine speaks on all of these, saying, the Wisdom Tradition, here spoken of, does not originate from the Simorgh culture, the Kabbalah, the Chaldean, Egyptian, and so forth.
“…we affirm that, if Egypt furnished Greece with her civilization, and the latter bequeathed hers to Rome, Egypt herself had, in those unknown ages when Menes reigned, received her laws, her social institutions, her arts and her sciences, from pre-Vedic India; and that therefore, it is in that old initiatrix of the priests — adepts of all the other countries — we must seek for the key to the great mysteries of humanity.” (Isis Unveiled, Vol. I, p. 589)
The terms pre-Vedic India and old India refer to the Indo-Iranian civilisation and preceding, not to the contemporary idea promulgated by the “White Aryans,” that are the consequences of corrupted notions.
“If I were convinced by any reasonable proof or argument that Palestine was ever the cradle of our civilization or philosophy, or other than the seat of a people who are the true exponents of a fine social materialism, I would advocate great attention to her records. But it is not a single small nation we should look to. The fountain head is better than a secondary receptacle, a mere cistern that takes the overflow from the source. The fountain is old India, and to that the members of the Theosophical Society who are not only desirous of saving time but also of aiding the sages of the past in the evolution of doctrines which, applied to our great new civilization, can alone save it from failure, will bend themselves to the task of carrying out our second object — the investigation of Aryan literature, religion, and science.” (William Q. Judge, The Path, Feb, 1891)
It traces the ideas of the old religions, their doctrine, and demonstrates them to be founded on a common esoteric basis and system. We find the doctrines in the Zoroastrian scriptures and esotericism, of the non-dual daivá, the seven gods of Simorgh (goddess of pre-Zoroastrian Persian culture), the anthropogenesis on the “sweat-born” and the eggs, the development of male and female from androgynous forms, are all as equally found fragmentarily in Zoroastrian texts (e.g., the Bundahishn). But, we can also find that in the Purāṇas; and so the idea, that the Puranas and Avestas, the Dzeniouta and Torah, etc., are all derived from a parent doctrine, begins to not sound as implausible.
The research of the theosophist, commences into another phase, when we find, that the Wisdom Tradition precedes even the Indo-Aryan civilisation. The doctrine of the seven worlds and seven heavens were known and taught by the Zoroastrians, and it is Ahura, whom presides over the great daivás. The doctrine of Globes was, also taught in the Zoroastrian line of tradition, yet not fully explained. This tenet of the seven was taken to be merely “mythical” by scholars, as few explained the idea of the significance of the septenary division.
“Wisdom hath builded her house,
She hath hewn out her seven pillars.” — (Proverbs ix, 1.)
Yet, the seven are also in the now extinct, Zurvanism (R. C. Zaehner, Zurvan. A Zoroastrian Dilemma, Oxford, 1955, pp. 323, 334).
Terrestrial planes given here.
Using terms for the English with equivalents in the Zurvanism:
7. Para-Ego (vāyu-vāta, or space equivalent to dhatu in Theosophy)
6. Inner-Ego (fravahr)
5. Ego-Manas (ruvān, or manoh in its spiritual sense)
4. Passional-Lower Manas (ruvān, or manoh in its ordinary sense)
3. Vital-Passional, or Psychic (jān, vāyu, or Sk. prāṇa) and Desire nature.*
*The psychic principle, or the vayu or prana is universal and dual (higher constructive and lower destructive aspects of the universal substance or spirit)
2. Astral-Double, or Shadow (advēnak)
1. Objective Terrestrial (tan)
The Zurvanite Zoroastrianism classification is the five-fold division as in Tāraka Rāja Yoga, which is but a broad division, and contains in them sub-divisions. Thus, this is above shown to correspond still to the seven-fold division. It is further demonstrated in the passage of the Zurvanite Zoroastrianism, that the classifications or “bodies” (Sk. kosas) it says are of one principle (de, creator) represented by Time, Space and Wisdom. It is taught, that man is fashioned in those classifications. The principles describe their full constitution.
This decimates the National Socialist and Theozoologie doctrine of the Aryans in 20th c. Germany. Theosophists kept to the original meanings.
This same doctrine on the septenary has everything to do with origins of mind. Ahura Mazda is the synthesis of the Amesha Spentas, hence an Amesha Spenta itself. It is the Wise Lord, and the Amesha Spentas (or Manasaputras). One of the Manasaputras, or Amesha Spentas, is in us. This is Manoh (mind), or Manas, from which the word “Man” derives.
Indo-Europeans and Africans descendants of Common Ancestry
The Secret Doctrine states that the Africans, Aryans, Mongols, etc., have all originated from the same ancestors; and attribute original physical differences to climatic and geographical conditions. There are real consequences to that. Differences in histories, mentality, diets, culture, etc., which are surface things. It stated that there are some African tribes that are low intellectually, in comparison to the greater portion of humanity, not all Africans. It speaks solely of some having a lower intelligence. Yet, H.P.B. adds:
“If to-morrow the continent of Europe were to disappear and other lands to re-emerge instead; and if the African tribes were to separate and scatter on the face of the earth, it is they who, in about a hundred thousand years hence, would form the bulk of the civilized nations. And it is the descendants of those of our highly cultured nations, who might have survived on some one island, without any means of crossing the new seas, that would fall back into a state of relative savagery. Thus the reason given for dividing humanity into SUPERIOR and INFERIOR races falls to the ground and becomes a fallacy.” (Helena P. Blavatsky, The Secret Doctrine, Vol. 2, p. 425)
So, why do some attempt to define H.P.B. as a white race or Aryan supremacist?
It’s clear, the use of the term Aryan by theosophists, hasn’t been studied by those drawing false correlations.