On the "Mahatma Letters"
Talk given by Fritz Kunz
at Indralaya, August 4, 1957

I don’t want to talk formally about the Mahatma Letters so much this morning, but I would like us to discuss them. I’ll just remind us all of a few elementary historical facts. H.P.Blavatsky was a unique creature, who, after various lives in the past, was born in Russia under supervision. The incarnation was an arranged one, and from childhood on she was under the custody - the charge - of this Adept who was a major force in founding. The Theosophical Society, whom we call the Master Morya. That is his family name, a very noble name, the noblest name in India - that is in late Vedic and early Buddhist India. By guardianship I mean that arrangements were made so that she would be perpetually under supervision, and anything that might happen to her was instantaneously reported to the authorities so that she would be protected; and yet she would have all the freedom that she needed to grow up as herself, you see. Nobody wants slaves in this kind of work.

And she did grow up; and all that can be read extensively in Incidents in the Life of Madame Blavatsky, which I forgot to mention the other day as one of the source books - fascinating stuff. Now in the course of her life she went, as you know, finally got to Tibet, which she aspired to do for many years and finally she got there. This was after she met Master Morya in the flesh in London. And later on had a visit with him in the moonlight in Brighton, of all places. She got into Tibet, and there she went through the years of training sufficient to permit her to come into the Western world again and speak on behalf of these people.

Now, in order to qualify for that, a person has to be sufficiently developed so that the Masters can arrange - it’s in the Letters, you read it there - to sequester a portion of the person’s psychological structure, which remains in Tibet. This is different from the previous arrangement that I’m talking about. And at the same time, as you’ll find in one of the Letters, this makes such a person a kind of psychological cripple. Now it sounds horrible, doesn’t it? Sounds monstrous. But you have to deal with things as they are whether you think they’re monstrous or not.

The reason for this is that the Organization of the Masters is so important that under no conditions must its ultimate secrets be revealed or its processes impaired, excessively impaired. And these are the rules, that’s all. What do we mean by this? Well, it means, don’t you know, that the individual for all critical events is available for direct operations, in which case they act as a total personality, the whole thing is then fused again for such purposes. But during times when the Adepts are not carrying on through that individual certain special processes and so on, this division takes place again and the person moving around in the world just has to live as best as he or she can. That’s all. Now for studious purposes the reunion of the total personality can be sustained for hours on end because, don’t you see, if an individual is writing quietly in some sequestered place where the chance of interruption and so on is very small, this vital part can be let out, as it were, to collaborate in the job without much risk. But when, as in the case of HPB’s early work, she was moving around in all kinds of circles, you know - dinner parties, liquor, tobacco, trains, all sorts of things for hours on end - maybe days on end - this kind of divorced condition went on. And she was tempestuous by nature anyhow. And so the tempests and the outbursts and all kinds of things which - they had their place too - but which don’t represent the total being, were experienced by all kinds of folk. Well, that’s how she was.

Now it was due to her being willing to do this that all kinds of things were done that are reported in the book. And you know in 1880 she was visiting with a man named Sinnett - A.P. Sinnett in Simla, which is up against the hills in the Himalayas several hundred miles south of Cashmere [Kashmir], you know. Cashmere’s over there like that, and then you go ‘round the Himalayas and come down into the big curve, the big rampart, that is you come along to Simla. And in that quadrant of the Himalayas are many sacred and wonderful old institutions. So there she was, you see, on the periphery of this, in the highlands where the psychic atmosphere is much better than it is in the plains, and there she was available for this kind of communication. This was all no doubt planned, you understand, in considerable measure; and Sinnett was from the old days a man who’d incarnated many times with her and other people, I will say, in our circle. A wonderful chap really, a wonderful man, rather worldly but very wonderful, with a tender heart and a wife almost even more marvelous than he was from the theosophical point of view - and a small boy, Dennis Sinnett. And he had the guts you see, and the innate ability, innate instinct to invite Madame Blavatsky to come and be his guest. He read about her and she came along. Some friends had met her - mutual friends - and she came there. And there, don’t you see, the Masters who’d come near enough psychologically to do phenomena even in the midst of those, you know, port and whisky pegs and things like that, to do phenomena - they used her for this purpose and that is how Sinnett got involved in this. He saw these phenomena - you can read about them yourself if you haven’t. Fascinating stuff, absolutely the most romantic book on God’s earth. Dramatic, Romantic isn’t the word. Most dramatic book on God’s earth.

Now he got near enough to these things to write a letter to the Master Koothumi you see, and I guess HPB encouraged him to do so. The latter was delivered and, as you’ve heard me say many times, anyhow if you’ve read the book you know, Sinnett being a practical man thought he would convince everybody at one crack. So he suggested that an entire issue of the London Times -I think I have it right - should be transported from London by magical means and be shown to everybody - the government, you see, had its residence in Simla in the hot weather - shown to all the members of the government including the Viceroy, and they would countersign in the margin that they had seen it on that day. You understand there was no air mail in those days, they were still sailing ships too, some of them - steam of course in addition. He thought they would all countersign that they had seen this complete copy of the London Times in Simla on the day it was published in London - see? And then when the London copies came, it would prove that it had been transported from London by magical means. He was going to convert everybody with one issue of the London Times. That is the first letter in the book - the answer of the Master, see!

Now it’s a very interesting item because lots of people, they come here to this camp all the time and they say to us: if the Masters are so wonderful, why don’t They teach everybody everything right away? Well, the answer is because everybody else isn’t so wonderful! That’s the answer. We’re a heck of a job lot, between you and me! Well now, He tries to explain, but even Sinnett didn’t get it really. Don’t you see, He explains this, and in retrospect one can see very clearly there would be other explanations of such a thing. I’ll give you an example - somebody might carefully forge all those signatures, and how would you prove afterward they were not forged? And that’s exactly what went on with these phenomena - plenty of explanations, crazy ones no doubt, but from the point of view of people who don’t have this philosophy, less crazy than the fact itself. The fact itself, from the point of view of the Englishman of the 1880's was just sheer lunacy. See that? That, we gotta get used to. Well, that’s how the book opens. It opens in these words - this is how the Master answered that letter: “Esteemed brother and friend” - that’s how He addresses him - “Precisely because the test of the London newspaper would close the mouths of the skeptics, it is unthinkable”. See? It would be for the time being a stopper. You can’t do that to people. If you completely arrest their processes by something they cannot explain, they must either go crazy or think you’re a liar or something. That’s how He starts His communication with Sinnett. Very wonderful.

Now Sinnett got deep in it and he communicated with all kinds of people. He published stuff in his paper, and he tried over and over to get the Masters to agree to show themselves to him, and finally once the Master did appear in a dream so vividly that Sinnett waked up with the memory, but the adjustments necessary to fit into this scheme, Mr Sinnett never quite made. But we owe to him the existence of this book, this unparalleled book.

And as you know, there was associated with him a man named A.C. Hume, a Scotsman who was in the Civil Service, in the journalistic world in the Civil Service. Mr. Hume was even a tougher character - I don’t say ‘cause he was Scottish, but just by nature - and clever but vain. And after many, many struggles with these two men and all kinds of complications and writing and writing, and writing - you see that’s an immense amount of writing in there - most of it is from the Masters, a few are the letters returned of Hume and Sinnett - finally it was clear that Sinnett and Hume could never really get over into this other system. They couldn’t just give up, you see, and say: I’ve got to start from the other end - always trying to do it from this end, you see, the world’s end instead of from the inside out. And there was no field theory, there was nothing then, don’t you see, to help these people. We’re not being critical when we say these things.

Now I must explain one other thing before we discuss. We must understand that the purpose of all this was not merely to convince Sinnett, or to get one or two books written which they did not get written through Sinnett, and that. That was not the only thing. The system that the Masters run is incredibly vast and complex. The Theosophical Society is a nice little institution that They have got a few volunteers to get done. It has the possibilities of being a great and noble institution - right now it isn’t. I want to be clear about that. I know it’s got some properties, physical properties like this one. It’s got a Headquarters at Olcott [Wheaton, Illinois] , several Lodges own their Headquarters, we’ve got one in New York we own, and there’s a big estate at Adyar and there’s property owned in Sydney, Australia and so on - but property isn’t The Theosophical Society, is it? Any millionaire could buy all those properties tomorrow. What about the members? The members are about half as numerous as they were twenty years ago. What’s the quality of the members? What’s the thinking of the Society? Mr Sri Ram is doing what he can in a quiet, steady, careful way. It is very behind on its program, which you hear me talk about all the time. It’s a fine institution - boy, it could do marvelous things and it will. I mean there will be enough - They say so themselves - there will be enough members left twenty years from now to really get a good start again. And I have no doubt they have the right people lined up for this, to make the new start, just as they had HPB and a few others. There will be another gang - they’re coming in now actually - mature enough and strong enough and they will know enough, and in the next ten or fifteen years they will take this thing up. Actually this won’t happen unless we work, you understand, we can’t just sit back and say: fifteen years from now we shall be rescued. It just doesn’t work like that. There’s gotta be people doing something now providing the attitudes, the material, and so on. Right?

But, what I want to say is it’s only a little thing out of the total operation. They never die, They never quit, there’s no interruption in Their communication or Their sources of power. They’re an undying force which incarnates, which appears in individuals through the ages and as the few succeed the many come up; and thus this stream, like the protoplasm, keeps communicating up and down, and it never dies. Now one of the things They had in mind was what we now see. One of the reasons for starting the Society and moving its Headquarters to India was the determination that India shall be the seat of the revival of true learning, ‘cause she has the continuous tradition, she has the Dharsanas and the Vedanta and everything else. And there should be established in India the Headquarters of an organization that from India could do what you can’t do from Europe. That’s one of the things They were determined to do. This involved the freeing of India, which They foresaw. But the freeing of India in terms of the orbit of the Indo-British commonwealth as against Russia, for example, which of course was trying its best to come into India all those years, imperialistic Russia. Now, a very interesting thing happened which I’d like to mention, and then let’s talk more freely. When They found out that Hume was no good, They knew that anyhow in advance, a very interesting use was made of Mr Hume. You may remember that Mr Sinnett was encouraged - you know he used the “Pioneer” his newspaper so much for this kind of purpose that the proprietors got sick of it. The people who owned the newspaper got sick of it with his occultism and his Blavatsky and his tea cups and things, magical teacups. So They called him back to London and made terms which he didn’t like, and during that time the Masters worked up the idea of a newspaper owned by Indian capital edited by Sinnett, you see that? Marvelous. And They called this the “Phoenix” - they were going to call it the “Phoenix”. Well, Mr Sinnett had cold feet, and what about owners that are natives, don’t you know, and all this stuff, so it never came to anything. The Masters even got some of the Rajas to pledge capital and They could have put this over, there’s no question, but They didn’t bring it off.

Now an interesting thing happened. In 1884, owing to the work of The Theosophical Society which had only been in India two years, mind you - I mean, established in Adyar two years - it had been in Bombay a year or two before that, since 1880, two years it had been in Bombay a year or two before that, since 1880, two years it had been in Bombay and two years in Adyar, that’s four years altogether - there was such excitement in India from The Theosophical Society that the Indian National Congress was started. I don’t know how many of you know that - that was a result of the Theosophical Society. The Society met in Bombay in 1884, had its annual convention there, there was no Benares Headquarters in those days, and a number of people including a man I knew very well, Sir S Subramania Ier, went to Madras in order to have a political meeting independent of the Society and not to cloud the Society’s history or work with political forces. Members of the T.S., I want to make that clear. And they gathered some politicos in Madras who had attended the public meetings, and they formed a committee which next year met in Bombay at the Indian National Congress. How many of you never heard that before? Well I’ll be darned, I have lived in vain! You know I think I have been repeating myself all the time. It looks as though I’m not telling you all the truth - Now I must tell you an interesting thing. The government was, of course, watching this through the C.C.V - that’s Criminal Investigation Department, you understand, and to be political in India those days was criminal, see? It was all open, but it was criminal. You know what the government did? They picked out A.O. Hume to join in the meeting in Bombay as a spy in behalf of the government - isn’t that fascinating? He was too stubborn and thick-headed to be any good for occultism, but he turned out to be useful as a spy in the Indian National Congress. And in spite of all that he was, the Masters could use him without his knowing anything about it. And you know, A.O. Hume is now regarded as one of the fathers of the Indian National Congress to this day. I’m telling you this because unless you see the ramifications you don’t get any idea of the way in which the Masters run things. They are involved in all great political, historical, scientific and every other thing that goes on. Everything. There’s nothing that advances human welfare that’s significant where They are not at hand, see? Just take this from me, you don’t have to believe it, but listen.

Well, they never got the “Phoenix” going, and the Congress went on from 1884 passing resolutions and keeping its strength a little and so on, going up and down hill, until Mrs Besant came out to India in 1893. She had been watched by the Masters long before she joined the Society. Sinnett was warned to take interest in her long before The Secret Doctrine was published which brought her into the circle. She came out in 1893, and her name is in the book here by the way in one passage, and she understood a lot of this and she started to work in India, and by 1914 - by about 1910 she had joined the Indian National Congress. She didn’t start as a politico you see. She started to get the confidence of the Indian people, and to work up a social and educational apparatus which could do this work and get leaders, young people that she trained, all kinds of young people, hundreds of them, nobody in the West knows any more the names are almost forgotten, some are dead of course, she entered the Indian Congress. And by 1914, just before the war began, she had got the Congress to proclaim home rule as its objective. They had never done that before, you see. And she bought the newspaper, the Madras Standard, and renamed it New India, and the “Phoenix” which couldn’t be started in 1884 was started in 1914! They never quit either in the Himalayas! What They need They get, bit by bit.

I was in Madras, I was in Colombo as a matter of fact, came up from Colombo and was in on the start of New India. Exciting business you know, frightfully exciting. Mrs Besant had been coming home from England, and somebody heard the Madras Standard was for sale. They cabled to her on the boat and she, without knowing all the ramifications or how much money would be involved, cabled “buy it”. She did that all the time, that’s how she got the Happy Valley. She got herself in for about $120.000 worth of commitments without knowing what $120.000 was. When we told her in pounds she said: “That’s quite a lot of money, isn’t it”! She bought the Madras Standard, and we all rallied around and oh I wrote some of the finest editorials you ever read! I wrote a very learned one on “The Increase of Irrigation and its Relation to Precipitation in Western States” - did you ever read that? (laughter) And so on - And away we went, you see. And by 1919 the Parliament had declared, the King of England had declared from the throne and Parliament had acted and India was on her way to freedom. Now all this is behind this you see. Thousands of things like that which They know what They’re doing. Schools and new-sub-races and scientific developments. The Master Morya tells in there about Crookes. You know Crookes got his inspiration - you know, Sir William Crookes - he got his inspiration from Them about the fourth state of matter. And They say he’s only made a beginning - and now we know that he only made a beginning. They have protected all these big people as far as they allow the protection. Well, that’s what’s in the Mahatma Letters. Well let’s talk about it.

Question:Aren’t there one of two other things?

Fritz: Oh boy! it’s a fabulous compendium of occult knowledge. You see it was written in privacy.

Question: Although I hold HPB and A.P. Sinnett and Olcott in great esteem, I’ve always wondered why it is that they - why it says in the Letters that they were the best material available. Because they did have a few defects, and Sinnett, of course I should hardly . . . it was because Sinnett was so ..... that the Mahatma Letters had to be written .... not saying anything in a critical way.

Fritz: Wonderful question

Voice: Can you repeat the question?

Fritz: The question is - in the Mahatma Letters They hold these people in high esteem and say that they are the best They can find and so on, but at the same time - may I put it this way, I’ll paraphrase you a little bit - they turn out to be quite a job lot. I’m putting it much more harshly than you do, but anyway that’s the gist of your remark, isn’t it? Well, this is the most fascinating question of the lot, thank you. Because, you see, it raises the question of the relationship of more or less ordinary people, I mean people involved in the world, to the Masters who are not involved in the world. You see it raises that question. And this is the great question. Well not, I will start with a philosophical question that will become immediately practical. You know lots of people think that philosophy isn’t practical. But the truth is that philosophy is the most practical - everything else is secondary. Just put that in your pipe and smoke it - if you are a smoker! Let me explain something. The Masters, and I mean now the Dhyân Chohans - I don’t even mean Koothomi - are the only beings who are absolutely free. See that? Everything below a Dhyân Chohan - that is a radiant Lord who only exists in the utterly non-material - everything below that level from the highest planes of nature down, anybody bound in that system here even if he’s spiritual as heaven knows what, is bound, and is not free. And since the object of all Adepts and all highest Beings is this freedom, now let me say something to you - the last thing the Masters will ever do is impair your freedom - that is the last thing They will ever do. You can be a darn fool on the largest possible scale, and They will graciously permit you to be that, see? The one thing They won’t do is to impair your freedom. Now what does this mean? It means They can only work with volunteers - that’s the first proposition, you see. They’re restriction is to volunteers. Now how many people are volunteering in your circle to be part of this show? Not many. And people read this book all the time, you see that, and they think about it and everything, and they remain exactly as they were practically for years on end. They don’t volunteer, they don’t do anything much. Maybe they feel better - fine. They’re more interested, they’re more curious. The book’s been read by thousands of people; but the number of people who say:”Boy, this is the biggest cause I ever heard of” and who pitch in and give relentless cooperation is very few. So right away, you see, thousands of talented people are out of the picture. Am I clear so far?

Now there’s another thing. The circle of people that are really qualified to do any cooperating is very largely restricted by a practical consideration. It follows that Karma is real in human relations. I mean if you believe in Karma, you know the Law of Justice operates in human relations. Now if anybody is sufficiently important spiritually and intellectually and morally and so on, to have been near the Masters in the past, the likelihood is that he will be near the Masters now and in the future. I mean if he amounts to anything, keeps it up, right? Isn’t that natural? Then don’t you see the Masters are restricted further by the circle that is by habituation near to the Masters in the past. Now Sinnett in his last life - I’ll just give you a fact - was a consul in Rome during one of the late Emperors, about 100 years A.D. And the Master Koothoomi had been what’s called the ......(?).... Flamen de Allis (?) in Rome at that time, a kind of Bishop you know - I don’t mean Roman Catholic, but old Roman religion Bishop, so to speak. And they had been very close to each other in a very worldly and corrupt society. Now this and other associations with Master Koothoomi in other lives had given Mr Sinnett privileges. This is a privilege, you see, to do the job. You see the drift of all this? It incorporates new principles of relationship - nothing to do with intellectual ability, or any such worldly status.

Question: You mean to serve is a privilege not lightly given.

Fritz: Oh yes, yes. And this is unique. To be in on a thing like this in the early days is really something. You don’t take Tom, Dick and Harry for that! Now Hume is another story. Hume was an accident, so to speak, in this way. The Masters wanted Hume to be used, but They didn’t want him informed. They knew this risk, you see, and Sinnett is reproved in one of the Letters because he told Hume everything, or far too much. And They had to keep telling him “don’t do this” you see, and so Hume got hold of a lot of language and notions he was completely unfitted to understand. And with his intellectualism running loose, you see, he thought: “I know more than Sinnett”, But morally he was not anywhere near Sinnett - I don’t mean morally in the sense of ordinary morals - spiritually mostly. Nowhere near. Well, Hume was all right. They made what They could of him. They sent him as a spy to the Indian National Congress. It’s a very complicated question that you raise, you see, very complicated.

Voice:I probably would not have got such an answer anywhere else.

Fritz: But coming back to this question of freedom, that is really the nub of your question. The object of the Adept is to know enough and to be enough - you know, spirituality and knowledge, so that he is completely free once and for all. And the achievement of that is a terrific undertaking. It is absolutely unimaginably difficult. And so I say, the last thing that anybody that knows anything about this, let alone who has achieved it, wants to do to anybody, is to impair their freedom.

Now this brings a point home to us. You take this property right here - I’m going to be very practical now - this property has been going for thirty years. And there are present people that have been battling all those thirty years. They are contributing their money, their abilities, their patience - and I may say their impatience - and their tenacity of purpose, and their confidence in one another, and God knows what, huh? And they have got something wonderful, see. One of the most marvelous spots in the United States. Believe me I see a lot of them. It’s beautiful, it’s sequestered, it’s - although there have been battles on this ground they have never been vicious, horrible battles, see, that I know anything about - it’s really very wonderful. And we have friends here like that tree - you know you just can’t win that kind of circumstances easily, that’s hard work. Well, here we are. We’ve been at it thirty years and still the number’s pretty small - the people who mean business about this - very small. Why is this? Well, that’s because what’s real is hard to understand. And the number of people who want to do anything about it that do understand is small, and we’re all locked up in the world one way or another, we have our Karma and our problems and everything else. We have duties, sacred duties you can’t lay down. You can see it’s very difficult to do anything along these lines, it’s not easy. It’s not like starting a factory or some ordinary school - an art gallery, there are bushels of artists, ten cents a dozen, and they could start an art gallery good, bad, or indifferent. But Occultism, this ultimate truth, that is the most tough thing to possess and use. So there are very few, that’s all. Were they remarkable? History will have to tell us how remarkable were Blavatsky and Sinnett.

One thing is true, and I think you had this in your mind. They speak very harshly sometimes, brutally, of Blavatsky, don’t they? You read the Letters huh? Brutally almost. But you must understand first of all that they were private letters. Second. They told her blunter truths that They ever spoke of her. They never deceived her. What is more, she spoke the truth when she felt like it too - don’t forget that! When she was real mad with somebody she thought wasn’t fair, she went right up to Shigatse and said so! That’s what They want, you see. There’s no concealing in this group.

Question: Did the Masters ever give permission for those Letters to be made public?

Fritz: That’s a question I can’t answer, you see, because I wasn’t involved in that. The Master Koothoomi says once: “ They will never be published with my permission”. Well, what does that mean? I don’t know. People say he must have given permission because he could otherwise have had them destroyed quietly.

Question: You said that the Masters never interfere with our free will.

Fritz: That’s part of the answer. But you see there’s implied in this also, why didn’t They have nice little fire in Sinnett’s apartment if They don’t want them published, and have them burned up and that would be the end of it. Well you see, maybe they were published without the Master Koothoomi’s permission. And maybe He grew to a state of indifference. Maybe it was decided they are useful. They are fabulous. I can’t say, you see. I wasn’t in on that. I don’t know.

Question: Well, Fritz, considering that they are so useful, why do you think they have been so neglected in the Society. You almost never hear of them. We do hear about The Secret Doctrine a lot - but this, not often. Now why is that?

Fritz: Well, it’s a very complicated question. It came up a little while ago, and we answered only a small part - we discussed only a small part of it, I’ll try to be more sufficient in what I’m going to say now. I’m going to stand up for it too! First of all, we must understand very clearly that these being letters to individuals who are putting questions, and since the original letters are often lost, you only get one part of the story. Second - as they are letters, the Master is always trying to correct the errors in the interrogator’s mind, and He overdevelops the thing that will correct it for him . . . so the result is that the book is filled with a vast collection of oddments. Some are exaggerations of small points in order to tell Sinnett something, others are tremendous truths in a couple of words, see?

There’s another thing too we must remember, there is no English language for most of what They are talking about, right? Yet They try to do it in English as best They can. Oh, it’s really a terrible business. Now when this was all finished - They stopped writing to Sinnett about 1885 finally - They had effectively stopped before that actually, weren’t telling him much anyhow - They had now Madame Blavatsky writing The Secret Doctrine and everything that’s mentioned in here that They cared to develop fully, They developed rather adequately there. And what might be called the conceptual system is in The Secret Doctrine. You can come back from the S.D. to this and get immense new wealth out of it. For example, in the S.D. nothing is said about the inner kingdom. I don’t mean inner round, that’s another proposition altogether. Nothing is said about the inner kingdom. But it’s mentioned in here, in fact it’s identified. And I might talk about it some morning - it’s kind of interesting. Scientifically it can now be examined a little bit.

Now there’s also the fact that the older people are - like Leadbeater - who were involved in the promise not to talk about these things publicly, kept their promise and they lived a long time and under those circumstances there wasn’t much encouragement to talk about them. Jinarajadasa writes about them a little bit, and in the July issue of The Theosophist from Adyar there will be an article by me in which I quote from the Mahatma Letters - I’m going to discuss that passage here, reincarnation from the Masters’ point of view. Well, I don’t know - it is terribly hard stuff to manage too. One of the reasons is this, and I’m trying to clear that up here. The terms of reference are the elements, not the planes of nature, right? Does everybody here know what I’m talking about? The elements are a large spectrum, the total spectrum of material and even non-material processes. The planes of nature that most people study is a little over three-fifths of that spectrum less the two non-material elements even. So it’s only a small piece, the planes of nature are only a small piece of the whole. Now the Mahatma Letters are written out of the background of the elements, the total spectrum. So you try to cram this into the planes of nature all the time, you see, and you get a terrible confusion. Nobody's ever straightened that out. There ought to be a lot more written about the basis. Those are some of the reasons.

Question: Fritz, my reaction to some of the Letters was that Koothoomi said “they” or “we” I presume meaning the Brotherhood of Buddhists, said They were Buddhists. Is this so?

Fritz: This is somewhere where you can at last say yes - but with some explanations. Yes, that’s a fact.

Question: Alright, then on the other hand, They say elsewhere that Their primary task is to free man from this tremendous illusion of religion and God and the exploitation that’s taken place in religion and so on. How do these add up?

Fritz: When I said yes a moment ago that They are Buddhists, you understand I meant They are followers of Buddha, and not followers of Buddhism. Let me explain more fully what is involved in Austie’s fascinating point. First of all I have to prescribe some Theosophy as fact and you do what you like with it. We are now in the middle of the Aryan race. And the humanity to which we belong is pretty well all here and present on the earth - not all, but the vast majority. They are not all physically incarnated. The bulk of them are dead, but they will come back later. This humanity is a colossal fact - absolutely stupendous fact! It consists of many thousands of millions of Monads who have achieved the business of being human beings. And this is a stupendous fact in nature. I mean, we may look like a job lot, but don’t worry, potentially this is an enormous proposition. Now, that humanity has got to produce its own leaders. It cannot live forever on other Beings. It has its own creative task in the cosmos to perform. It must produce its own free beings. The first one that it produced was Gautama Buddha. And the moment He appeared on the scene after lives and lives and lives of endeavor that when he achieved this final level of a Dhyâni Buddha - that is an independent intelligence in Parabrahman that need never surrender and presumably never will surrender His individuality - I don’t want to say individuality, His pointness, the Atman - we had a Being who, having been of our humanity and now the perfection, was the sole model for all who came after. In that sense They are Buddhists. They are not Buddhist in the sense that they follow the Pitikas or believe that the printed doctrines are all that there are or any of this nonsense you see. You know, Buddhism is corrupt too. The Buddha said, make no figure of me. He had not been dead long before seven golden figures were made anyhow etc. etc. You can’t quarrel with that, that’s just fact. Now They are Buddhist in that sense, that They are all part - I mean the bulk of the Hierarchy, not quite all, the Kumaras are from another society than this terrestrial clump of people - but anyhow the bulk of the Brotherhood is staffed, is manned, it consists of people who belong to this show. Now there’s another thing. When Gautama attained, I wont say He was appealed to, but it came about that He reorganized the Hierarchy - He was able to do so you see - for the sake of this humanity. He reorganized it, made some adjustments in the requirements for admission, and other things of that kind, quite profound changes, and in that sense He is almost the Founder of the present state of the organization. They are Buddhist in that sense, right? He hasn’t gone away anywhere. People like that don’t go somewhere you know. And it is in that sense, Austie, I think we should follow this proposition. Now, as for religion as confining us. That’s true. It’s a dreadful business, human beings do this to themselves. You know. they get somebody wonderful that’s a clear flame of some kind, and they don’t even wait till he’s dead to set up meanings of their own. Well, what are you gonna do? We’re all a bunch of fish.

Question: Fritz, could you comment on the Letter that begins on page 52?

Fritz:I’ve got my book. Is that the first edition?

Voice: Yes.

Fritz: I’ve nearly worn the paper in it to shreds now. Oh, the tenth letter where They say They don’t believe in God. That is germane to Austie’s remark . . . That’s a corker, that’s a corker. Listen, we gotta get rid of this word, God - that’s our trouble, see? I’m in favour of it. You know Sinnott says the devil has to be brought back - I’m in favour of that. I mean the other Sinnott, Ed Sinnott. What do you mean by God, see? Well, we all know there are all kinds of ideas of God, a gentleman with a large beard, huh? who spoke to Moses on Mount Sinai. Some think he wears gaiters and a shovel hat, the more orthodox Church of England people. What is God? That’s the ten dollar question. . .

Question: Fritz, this is a very rough chapter, rough on God, as it were.

Fritz: It really is, yes.

Question: How far can we take that?

Fritz: I’d take it literally. It was written for Hume but - you know it was written to blow Hume to smithereens partly - I take it literally. Let me try to explain. Any thought of God which is finite in character, localized in space, conditioned by material process etc etc, is by its nature false. The God that They would like us to talk about if we’re going to have to use the term is infinite absolute perfection, the sole cause of all phenomenal and finite events whatsoever. And that’s obviously not even in this solar system alone, see? Now lots of theosophists think that the Logos is this. If you’re talking about the Logos of the solar system, no. He’s just a local operation. I say that with all reverence, please. But He’s just a local operation. And what They are trying here to do is restore the idea of Parabrahm, right? to restore it to use, not as a term but as a fact. If I had my magnetor here I could explain it again. The entire universe is a magnetic field. There is no where where magnetism in some degree does not obtain. Now there are local intensifications and variations of magnetic fields, but they tie into the infinite lines of force of the infinite field. And thus they are what they are because of the infinite magnetic field. Now the field is also present with the gravitational field - you heard that last night, you see. Gravity and the electromagnetic field are now operating through you in every direction while you sit here. And I don’t know how many dozen other fields. They are all properties of Parabrahman. They are all infinite in extent and perfect in their operation. THIS is God. That’s all They are trying to say. But it isn’t easy to grasp it because then everybody would say: Well how do we get this? You get that by what is really a very simple operation. There is in this infinite reality non-material points. Being non-material, they aint anything, see? You get that? Do they exist? What do you mean by exist? Let’s not go into that. These points can be centers of operation for infinitude. Being infinitely small, they are part of infinity. You can have any number of them. They don’t pack up and occupy any space. These are called mulaprakriti or Paramanus (?) It depends upon whether you’re talking Vedanta or Naiya Vaisheshika. Now, starting with that, one can imagine the focusing of these infinite forces. And out of that focusing come universes, apples, and John Abbenhouse. In that order. You can pick out whether I classified him with apples or the universe! Now this is the simplest idea on God’s earth and that’s why it’s hard to grasp. But we really do not belong to the finite changing universe, we don’t really belong. We’re just messed up in it.

Question: Fritz, I want to ask a loaded question.

Fritz: Come on!

Question: On the basis of what the Master said about religion and the fact that He was one of the individuals who founded the T.S., why does the T.S., why are they - I don’t even like the word tolerant - why do they say: well belong to any religion you want, this is alright, see. Why not say; religion is out? This is the thing we want to get away from. We’ve been exploiting humanity with religion for God knows how long. Why does this have to go on? This seems to me to be a paradox, unless your friend freedom amongst the Society is the thing that’s created this, not They.

Fritz: I think you have a compound question here that has to be divided into two parts. The first is: why do the Masters have anything to do with religion? For instance, Master Koothoomi is visiting Lamas - or used to be - visiting Lamas in Tibet all the time. And nothing is more superstitious than Lamaism. And he’s doing his utmost for all kinds of people mixed up in Lamaism, including the redcaps who are smelly characters some of them, occultly speaking. Anyhow, why? ‘Cause They got duties to do and They gotta help all They can, help where They can. They have to live somewhere. They would get a rougher deal here on Orcas Island, I can tell you, than They do in Tibet. They gotta live somewhere, They gotta work, They have physical bodies, They have duties to perform. You don’t perform duties for humanity without getting down into the muck with them. That’s one thing, another is this - only a very few people can grasp this impersonal principle and conduct their lives accordingly, very few. And the result is if you want to help humanity you have to make a choice - either those few or get on with the general job too. . . . personally I don’t think there’s any harm in it because if you teach the common doctrine that lies behind them all, you might get people to get out of their individual framework. Let’s talk about this more . . . .Well, I tell you Austie, you’ve read Mahatma Letters, haven’t you. Quite a lot.

Voice: Yes sir.

Fritz: What do you think of the Master Koothoomi and the Master Morya, how do They impress you? Are they impressive?

Voice: Well, I think that piece of literature, with the exception of one or two others possibly, is the best piece of literature in the T.S.

Fritz: Hear, hear. I agree.

Voice: But I think it’s too dangerous for most theosophists to read.

Fritz: Right! You said it boy! And how wise They were to try to keep it quiet until They could get hold of some people. In fact what ought to be done is to gradually open up the dynamite in it.

Voice: I think that’s the answer to Gene’s question, why it isn’t better known. Because people are, maybe unconsciously afraid if they get the implications of what is said in some of these things, like the tenth letter for example, it would blast things from stem to stern. And who wants to be blasted?

Fritz: Let me tell you something. I wrote a piece called “Quest for the Quiet Mind” - some of you have read it. And I worked like a dog to state what I said there, and it isn’t so bad. But anyhow I did what I could and it went to Gardner, E.L. Gardner. E. L. Gardner is one of the senior members of the T.S., positively one of the most wonderful people you ever saw. Now what I really did was unlock the basic methodology in science and in the Mahatma Letters - the same methodology really you see. I unlocked that and tried to state it. I got a letter from Gardner. He said to me, he said some nice things about what I’d said and so on, and he said: “It is also the most devastating thing I have read in a long time” - and yet, Mahatma Letters is looking him in the eye every day, and he’s one of our best students of it. It never struck him . . . . (words lost due to tape change) It hit him terribly hard. I agree with you, it’s dynamite.

Question: Fritz, isn’t this right in line with what you mentioned about the London Times when the Masters would not transport it to India because it would completely change the thought processes of people, and that you couldn’t do.

Fritz: Yeah, you couldn’t do it. And those that tried would go crazy etc. etc. I think that is a physical aspect or physical representative of the intellectual dynamite that’s in here. It’s almost a frightening book in this sense that it really gives you the dimensions, the incredible dimensions of being an occultist - or as far as that goes, a really honest human being. It’s out of this world.

Question: It would seem that a complete answer to the question about why the book is not read in the lodges must also include an airing of the reluctance of lodges to put this idea of the Masters before the group as not being a required thing to believe in in order to take part in Lodge activities.

Question: I’d like to answer something to Harry’s question. I don’t think it matters two hoots whether these men are Masters or not. It’s what They have to say, the content of what They’re saying that seems to me to be the thing that matters. If They’re saying the truth, it doesn’t matter who says it, it seems to me. Now maybe Fritz won’t agree with this. I don’t think (indistinct) . . . lend authority by -

Fritz: He’s raising the question of authority, isn’t he? I’ll tell you what I feel about this, and I’ve said it here plenty of times. I think we should be very plain with everybody and say if you haven’t read the history of the Society, if you don’t believe it was founded by people who know a lot more than we know, there’s no question of whether They’re Masters or not, see that, if you don’t believe that, don’t come in here! That’s not a dogma, you see that? That’s historical fact. And why should people join the T.S. to say: “It’s a beautiful idea” when they’re up against this dynamite. We’ve gotta warn them, and say: if you don’t believe this, don’t come around here. If you don’t believe it you’ll think we’re a bunch of nuts. We believe in a lot of bunk, or we’re deceiving them, whatever the case may be, in order to take the collection on Sunday.

Question: Well, what you are really saying is that as a group we’re not very strong -

Fritz: That’s right , I say that. And that’s cause we’re not ready for this strong meat too. I’d like to see every lodge have a class in this stuff. We’ve gone into this in New York for years and it’s done us great good. We still admit people without these warnings and things, I regret to say, in New York because I don’t run the Lodge. I would say to everybody who wants to join the T.S. “I want to know, have you read these books, do you regard these claims, these historical claims, you understand as authentic? If you don’t, I don’t think you should join this. I think you’re committing yourself to something you haven’t committed yourself to.”

Question: I have a lot of respect for what you say, but yet I notice the tone of authority that you’re denying a certain amount of spiritual freedom to those who haven’t made up their mind.

Fritz: Listen, I don’t care what anybody believes. But the T.S. is a working organization you see that, that’s what it is, it’s a working organization trying to get something done. Now why should people join a working organization and say “I have the gravest doubts about its bona fidence.

Voice: Oh no, it....

Voice: I’d like to see a show of hands of the people who recognize the Society as a working organization as far as their own personal belonging is concerned.

Voice: What do you mean by -

Voice: How many people go to lodge meetings to serve, and how many go to get something out of it. If you go to get something out of it, I don’t call it a working organization. If you go there to serve, then I say, show your hand.

(Many voices all at once) You do both, you do both - you go to get, so that you can serve more effectively.

Voice: Well, I’m not saying that no one goes to serve, and perhaps E.S. is the place where all the hands would show, I don’t know.

Fritz: Somebody back there is shyly raising a hand . . . .Now look here, there are two propositions here. One is the Theosophical Society - Harry’s trying to bring that home to us and get a show of hands. The T.S. is a program of work, see. And if you think that is important you certainly want to get in and bat the ball and do the best you can. Unfortunately it also involves living up to a very high standard at the same time, you see. It isn’t like opening a stationery shop or something. It’s a little tougher than that. Alright. But that’s one thing by itself. Now the other thing, which is entirely independent, is your private life, what goes on inside you, you see that. And I don’t give a darn what goes on inside you - I’m your friend you understand - I don’t care what goes on inside you. But if you come out with propositions about this working organization, then it becomes public business. And what the Society is trying to do is plain as could be. There’s no problem in that. It’s trying to teach a realistic philosophy that will restore knowledge to man of what man and the universe really are. That’s what it’s doing. It’s not trying to make a creed or a dogma or private revelations or salvationism or something. I don’t know whether your question can be put though, Harry, because everybody I suppose believes he is being serviceable even in going to a meeting - even if he never does anything else, see what I mean? I doubt whether that is the highest service a person can give, but that unfortunately is prevalent. You know, meeting in a meeting is a beneficial thing in itself - it’s a good thing to have people quietly meeting and studying.

Question: What does Harry mean by service?

Voice: Well, as I see it, maybe this freedom thing gets into it also, we don’t really carry the ball to the world really, and the idea of a working organization implies to me that you’re gearing yourself to carry the ball to the world.

Question: How are we to do that?

Fritz: We’re not carrying it effectively, I agree with Harry there. You weren’t here when I was talking about this - was it yesterday morning? The history of the Society? You know, Harry, the Society has had a tumultuous history - thirty, forty years, very serious problems and so on. It is only now coming out from under them. And at the same time it is only now getting hold of this new material . . . . I agree with you that we haven’t been delivering the ball. But now the question is with regard to the future, and that’s what concerns us here. What do we do in order to make sure that we carry the ball from here on? I don’t think you can do a darn thing except in terms of a program, which the Masters make clear They are conducting anyhow. The are quickening science, They’re guiding science, They’re even releasing inventions thereby . . .. And They are running terrible risks on Their own behalf and on our behalf. And the question is, are we moving fast enough to supply the metaphysics and philosophy that goes with quantum theory, relativity, genetics, etc? We aren’t. Now, if we speeded that up, I believe a tremendous curative, I mean purifying, what shall we say? sort of the issuance of new criteria would come about. And you could work much more effectively.

Well now, I was telling you, Emily is going to parcel this protoplasm stuff, it will come to Seattle, see? Now who is going to study it? That’s the question, who is going to use it? To whom are you going to send notices in the universities and the clubs sometime and say: “We’ve got some very interesting stuff organized around this Seifritz film”. And even if they have seen the Seifritz film, what does it mean. Right? We’re gonna do that also with the air principle. I’m trying my best to buy, and don’t care what it costs, another film, more marvelous than Seifritz’. It’s the first expert photography of the living mitotic process. I don’t know what that means to you. You know, everybody is made out of cells. All cells are reproducing practically all the time. You are a quivering mass of reproduction - you’re reproducing by the million inside you all the time. As cells die, new cells come up. Alright, we got a picture of this. It is unbelievable. It’s a German picture. We’re going to release all of this to the lodge no matter what the universities do with it. They buy these films too but we’re going to release them as a part of a total rational texture of Theosophy, of meaning. If the Seattle and the other lodges pick this stuff up, I think we can deliver the ball.

Question: How in the world do you pursue work with .... high level scientists in the Foundation for Integrated Education without letting them know you’re a theosophist?

Fritz: Oh, they all know I’m a theosophist.

Question: Well, do any of them get interested in Theosophy?

Fritz: Yeah, I tell you, starting with my president, who is Kirtley Mather, and Henry Margenau who is director of research, and these men are fully familiar with my association with the Theosophical Society. And the curious thing is that they respect the Society because I seem to have some clues about how to put learning together. They get the flavour of Theosophy in this way. In other words, if you use the material to prove that there is a growing structure of explanation for the universe, that they prize. Of course, if one came to them and said “Gentlemen you gotta believe in reincarnation, karma, life after death, the astral plane, and avichi” they would politely leave for somewhere else. One doesn’t do that. But then one doesn’t do that anyhow, does one?

Question: But you were speaking of taking Theosophy to the world. And I was thinking of the people that you’re taking theosophy to.

Fritz: Well, I’ll tell what we’re doing and my friends know this perfectly well in the Foundation. We’ve begun this slow preparation of education materials which the theosophical philosophy explains, but which the learned world can explain in detail, not philosophically, but in detail. And by moving along that ridge between the two things, one shall join these worlds together on the facts, on experience, not on hypotheses. Nobody can look at that magnetor without having to say to himself “How the devil does that work?” Now, the physicist tells him the quantum part of it, but we tell him the other part. And I showed that Gestalt psychology stuff yesterday morning. We know quite a lot about that, that the Gestalt people don’t know. And I have this piece on space lattices I showed the other night. We know what that means in a way they don’t know. Because we have a larger and more commodious fabric. If only we could stick it another few years, Austie says I’m always saying this, anyhow I stick it. What else? Anybody want to go wash up before lunch?

Voice: Fascinating Fritz.

Fritz: Thank you. Anyhow the Mahatma Letters are fascinating. READ ‘EM!

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