Modern Theosophy and Alice A. Bailey: Theosophical Criticisms

Theosophists on Alice A. Bailey Teachings:

  1. From Theosophical Society to Bizarre Quasi-Catholic Anti-Blavatsky Cult, UK Group of U.L.T.
  2. 14 Good Reasons to Reject Alice Bailey Teachings, Blavatsky UK Group of U.L.T.
  3. Tibetan Master or Christian Priest: The Influence behind Alice Bailey, Blavatsky UK Group of U.L.T.
  4. Endersby, Victor. Alice Bailey and her Christianised Pseudo-Theosophy
  5. Crump, and Cleather. 1929. The Pseudo-Occultism of Mrs. A. Bailey
  6. Weeks, Nicholas. In Theosophy’s Shadow Vanity Whispers
  7. Thomas, Margaret. Edited by Mark R. Jaqua, Theosophy Versus Neo-Theosophy, 2003 Edition; or Theosophy Versus Neo-Theosophy (PDF). Differences in Teaching.
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3 thoughts on “Modern Theosophy and Alice A. Bailey: Theosophical Criticisms

  1. “The mentality of Adyar and therefore Adyar-American Theosophical Branch is to include all viewpoints, and like most modern religionists, perceive such criticisms as harsh, or “mean.” I would implore you to not trust this weak approach.”

    As I understand it the philosophical relativism of Hobbs and othes (whose 20th c. popularity was perhaps due to the influence and apparent success of Freudian and Jungian psychology) has made the position you quote above quite normal and reasonable, even to many otherwise critical thinkers today if they do not have a sound metaphysical basis on which to view such passing follies and see them as they are, unstable opinions who validity can be justified by the impenetrable logic of modern sophism.

    Such otherwise intelligent commentators have ditched – quite rightly – the dogmas of Western Theology but have unfortunately embraced a physicalist and ethically ambivalent and scientism-based intellectualism that denies any absolute values in fear of invoking a personal God.

    But is it not just such fears and lack of metaphysical education that we as Theosophists have a duty to painstakingly explain and correct erroneous impressions? To show that a divine, eternal, intelligent and yet impersonal principle is NOT a Theological construct designed by any Jesuit or Brahaminical priesthood to ensnare them but a beautiful fact in nature?

    And further to show it is demonstrated in the SD as a fact intuitively known and correctly sensed in varying closeness to truth by countless generations of the wisest, most upright and able men from generations of scientists, philosophers and psychologists.

    We will not condemn the Adyarists for their weak grasp of the reality of the Universal Mind, but hope in time their studies will bring them nearer to an appreciation of the splendour of the idea and far reaching implications of survivability of consciousness outside a body – the pivot on which the concept of Mahat hinges and the secret of the Nirmanakaya’s and Bodhisattva’s success – and enable them to strengthen themselves by moving from such a wishy-washy relativism to a robust philosophy and holistic science than embraces all planes of action and consciousness, stopping at nothing less than a sustained contemplation of SAT, absoluteness, said to be the only plane on which the duality and paradoxes of existence meet with a reasonable resolution.

    Is this easy? No. Is it possible? Certainly, given the good will of the opened human heart, tested in the fires of experience and renunciation of self.

    Sooner or later, even if it appears as a forlorn hope, Truth must prevail and is a worthy endeavour of those who see the possibilities, in this if not in future times. And while it maybe true the once-great Eastern Schools of Mahayana Buddhism have fallen sadly since their previous highs following Tsongkhapa’s stern reforms of the 14th / 15th c. one can take solace that the mainspring of the great effort of the 1875 Theosophical Movement was a well-devised and reasonable evolutionary step for which humanity is ready now. H.P.Blavatsky in her article THE TIDAL WAVE http://www.ultindia.org/pamphlets/hpb/TheosHPB.pdf suggests the darkest period is that which precedes the dawn:

    “A death struggle between Mysticism and Materialism is no longer at hand, but is already raging. And the party which will win the day at this supreme hour will become the master of the situation and of the future; i.e., it will become the autocrat and sole disposer of the millions of men already born and to be born, up to the latter end of the XXth century.”

    This piece is worth re-reading periodically… in the mean while the writing is on the wall and the battle of ideas, not people, continues and hangs in the balance.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Quite. Bailey has done mischief to serious philosophical interest in Theosophy. Her claimed inspiration and connections with it are at quite at odds with the reintroduction of wholly un-Theosophical ideas such as a personal God. The Lucis Trust by way of example employs a “Great Invocation” which implores the return of a Christ-God to the earth. But what sort of Christ do they have in mind is left to them.

        For the more rational-minded isn’t such an idea modelled on an anthropomorphic Christian Theology in which this “fatherly deity” will return to earth to the praise from some and dread of those ‘outside the flock’? The blog’s author may know the detail of such horrors in more detail!

        In simple terms, it is just this return of a judgemental, avenging God that is at once personal but also omniscient that most rational scientists (rightly) oppose and which Theosophy shows as a grossly un-philosophical notion. Indeed, it is a comedy to those who have studied the rudiments of classical philosophy and who have put aside the psychologically cramping impediments of the last 2,000 years of passing off these ideas as having a sort of rational basis in logic and theology.

        H.P.Blavatsky wrote that having to rely on an unreasonable Jehovah-like figure for the Laws of the Universe and for Humanity is truly a “nightmare of the imagination.”*

        Fortunately the penny is starting to drop among the brighter and more logical and intuitive of the new generations.

        The rationality and reasonableness of the old Wisdom is re-asserting itself in the shape of a spirituality that seeks no individual God but sees divinity latent and to be awakened in all humanity and throughout nature. But, NB, this is no tuneful ode to the tree-hugging worshippers of the Cosmocratores,** whom the Secret Doctrine teaches have little to do with the spirituality of man, but only work on the lower psychic-astral planes of matter.

        This fact is a great help for those wishing to understand the wreckage that is New Age psychism’s so-called ‘philosophy’ which leads the unwary into psychic communications with dangerous elemental nature-forces. Such delusive practices are little more than the adoration of the lower semi-intelligences (the summon-able gnomes, fairies etc of old folklore) which are quite unconnected with ethics, spiritual reality or the disciplines of service, charitable love… all of which are epitomised by the eternal Path of renunciation of too-personal self interest.

        On the other hand history shows that an eternally manifesting consciousness, Mahat, Alaya, Akasa, Pradhana, the Universal Mind, etc etc is a spiritual, intelligent, supra-personal principle*** which has been for long years proposed and championed (at time in vain?) by many great teachers, from Pythagoras to Plato and the Alexandrian neo-Platonists, and from the many Zoroasters and Jains down to Krishna, Buddha and the great reformer Tsong-Kha-Pa (Tsongkhapa).

        There is thus at this stage in man’s intellectual and spiritual journey no necessity for a return to a childlike dependence on an external God, but instead turn inward to the deity in each man’s and woman’s heart to look for the “still small voice of conscience” – divine, not psychic!

        ~ ~ ~

        In 2009 an unknown student wrote:
        “It seems we must make the essential choice between a universe of ‘harmony and order’ or one of ‘chaos and random but strangely fortuitous events’. [God working in mysterious ways?]
        “Going back a step further, one sees the deeper choice between a universe ‘created ex nihilo’ – from nothing! – a bit of metaphysical sophistry and magic, or one that is ever-existent but periodic in its manifestation.
        “It seems that many of those who choose an ordered cosmos ‘ex nihilo’ see it governed by ‘a personal god’, which Mme Blavatsky, of the 19th c. Theosophical Movement, called “a nightmare of the imagination”. Others ALSO see order in the universe, but as a periodic emanation of universal consciousness or cosmic deity.”

        ** Q. Then do the Planetary Spirits of the Seven Sacred Planets belong to another hierarchy than to that of the earth?
        A. Evidently; since the terrestrial spirit of the earth is not of a very high grade. It must be remembered that the planetary spirit has nothing to do with the spiritual man, but with things of matter and cosmic beings. [NOT all spirits are spiritual beings, NB well!] The gods and rulers of our Earth are cosmic Rulers; that is to say, they form into shape and fashion cosmic matter, for which they were called Cosmocratores [a class of the generic Dhyani-Chohans]. They never had any concern with spirit; the Dhyani-Buddhas, belonging to quite a different hierarchy, are especially concerned with the latter. [other, but spiritual, members of the class of Dhyani-Chohans.]
        Q. These seven Planetary Spirits have therefore nothing really to do with the earth except incidentally?
        A. On the contrary, the “Planetary”—who are not the Dhyani-Buddhas—have everything to do with the earth, physically and morally. It is they who rule its destinies and the fate of men. They are Karmic agencies.
        Q. Have they anything to do with the fifth principle—the higher Manas?
        A. No: they [the Cosmocratores] have no concern with the three higher [spiritual] principles; they have, however, something to do with the fourth [kama-desire, psychic and impure]. To recapitulate, therefore; the term “Dhyani-Buddhas” is a generic name for all celestial beings. The “Dhyani-Buddhas” are concerned with the human higher triad in a mysterious way that need not be explained here. The “Builders” are a class called, as I already explained, Cosmocratores, or the invisible but intelligent Masons, who fashion matter according to the ideal plan ready for them in that which we call Divine and Cosmic Ideation. They were called by the early Masons the “Grand Architect of the Universe” collectively: but now the modern Masons make of their G. A. O. T. U. a personal and singular Deity [who is NOT necessarily a spiritual one].

        from Transactions of the Blavatsky Lodge, original ed. p 47-8, comments added in […]

        *** the hallmark of intelligence is said to be impartiality.

        Liked by 1 person

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