THEOSOPHIA
A Living Philosophy For Humanity

Volume I
No. 6 - March-April 1945

[Cover photo: William Quan Judge, April 13, 1851 - March 21, 1896.]

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THEOSOPHIA
A Living Philosophy For Humanity
Published every two months under the auspices of Lodge No. 60, American-Canadian Section, Theosophical Society
(International Headquarters, Covina, California).

Devoted to the Dissemination of the Ancient Wisdom.
CoEditors: Weno R. Bergstron, Boris de Zirkoff.
Subscription $1.00 a year (six issues); single copy 20 cents.
Send subscriptions to Lodge No. 60, 500 South Gramercy Place, Los Angeles 5 California.

Lodge No. 60, Theosophical Society
500 South Gramercy Place, Los Angeles 5, California Phone FItzroy 3020 or FEderal 5914.

Officers for 1944:
Sven Eek .................. President
Nancy Browning ....... 1st Vice-President
Albert Charles Lee ... 2nd Vice-President
Bertha Blanchard ..... Treasurer
Eloise Reiniger ......... Secretary
Julie Gagne .............. Assistant Secretary
Alice Eek .................. Librarian

Lodge Meetings and Public Lectures
All regular meetings of the Lodge and public lectures will be held at our new quarters: Knights of Pythias Hall, 265 So. Western Ave., Los Angeles 4. Easily accessible by Western Avenue Buss, and Car Lines R and S.

The following meetings are scheduled:
Friday, March 2nd, *:00 P.M. Elementary Theosophical Study Class. All Lodge Members are invited. Bring your friends who may wish to learn the basic teachings of Theosophy.
Sunday, March 4th, 3:00 P.M. Public Lecture by Boris de Zirkoff. Subject: "Can Our Civilization Survive?"
Friday, March 16th, 8:00 P.M. Major and Mrs. Huber S. Turner will speak on "The New Age." Discussion.
Friday, April 6th, 8:00 P.M. Elementary Theosophical Study Class.
Friday, April 20th, 8:00 P.M. Iverson L. Harris will speak on "The Theosophical society: its Nature and Objectives." Discussion.

Please note that the Friday meetings are to be on the FIRST and THIRD Fridays of the month.

We have been unable to obtain regular dates for Sunday lectures. All members and friends will be specially notified well ahead of time when such lectures are to be held.

Study Classes
Mens' Class, Textbook: Fundamentals of the Esoteric Philosophy, Second and fourth Monday of every month, at 8:00 P.M.
Class for more advanced studies; textbook: The Esoteric Tradition. Call up FE5914 for particulars.

Other Lodges in the Los Angeles Area
Lodge No. 5, 1595 Crossroads of the World, Hollywood, Culbreth Sudler, President. Public Lectures every Sunday at 3:00 P.M. Reading Room open daily from 12:00 to 4:00. Phone MO11652.
Lodge No. 30, 1240 North Wilson Avenue, Pasadena. Mary L. Connor, President. Phone SYcamore 46440.
Lodge No. 58, 831 North Mariposa Avenue, Los Angeles. Dr. Wm. V. Gale, President. Phone EX4421.
Lodge No. 63, 1595 Crossroads of the World, Hollywood. Dr. John Croiset Van Uchelen, President. Phone HI0019.

Los Angeles Public Relations Committee, Arthur W. Beach, Chairman, 1043 North Sierra Bonita Avenue, Hollywood 46. [3]

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LET'S GO TO WORK!
Boris de Zirkoff

The spread of Theosophy in the world and the strength of the Theosophical Movement depend primarily upon unremitting and intelligent work.

Wherever, among students, there burns the holy flame of spiritual enthusiasm for the dissemination of the ancient wisdom, there the Work flourishes and Theosophy becomes known.

Wherever self-interest is disregarded, and an honest and sustained effort is being made to sow the seeds of Theosophy broadcast, there every motion of hand and mind hears fruit an hundredfold.

Wherever worldly self-seeking interests have been imported into theosophical affiliations, and the primary objective of the student is either self-advancement or intellectual gratification, or an easy pastime observing someone else's doing the work, there the Movement comes sooner or later to a standstill, and pleasant but deadly molds of mind take the place of a living and workable philosophy of life.

It is one of the most regrettable facts to be observed among present-day students of Theosophy and members of the Theosophical Society, that a majority of them do not exhibit the slightest inclination to engage in any actual work intended either to spread Theosophy in their immediate neighbourhood, or to establish new contacts for the growth of the Movement. They are entirely satisfied, it seems, to listen to lectures, buy an occasional book, express flattering comments on the work of others, who belong to the minority of toilers, and await with pleasant anticipation the intellectual delights of future meetings. Needless to say, the interest of this category of members is still very much "greater" than is the case with those who, after joining the Society with considerable enthusiasm, never come to a meeting unless reminded or encouraged or urged to do so.

And can anyone challenge the statement, made in all sympathy and with no feeling of unkindness in one's heart, that the financial support of the Movement, on the part of the same large category of students, is negligeable, to say the least? How many can come out of the ranks of members and testify that his support of the Cause he professes to love has been made (let us say, this past year) at the cost of a marked self-sacrifice, with many and repeated self-denials and a telling control of his personal wants?

It is quite probable that the movement has such people; it is also quite probable that they will remain silent on the subject, and their names will remain unknown, except to the Recorders of Universal Justice, before whose vision our lives are an open book. It is equally probable that the others will go on in their self-made groove, speaking loudly of their devotion to the Movement, their love of Truth, their dislike of hypocrisy and sham; keeping very silent on the fact that their dues in the Society have never yet been paid, and their participation in the Movement and enjoyment of all its privileges, has been done at the cost of a few cents a month.

The Theosophical Society has its workers. It has its self-forgetful toilers, whose whole life and thought are dedicated to the Cause of Mankind. They are the pillars of the Movement, the "saints" of the universal Theosophical community. It is mainly through their lifeblood that the Movement is sustained; it is their spiritual and psycho-mental fluid that flows through its arteries. If it were not for their self-sacrificing task in all parts of the world, the [4] modern Theosophical Society would have given up its ghost long ago, scattering but a few bleached bones on the sands of time. But does their sacrifice, nay, often martyrdom, in the face of grievous odds, persecution, ridicule, and sometimes social ostracism, justify the complacent attitude of the many whose ethical callousness is a deadweight on the Movement?

The living power of every truly spiritual Movement throughout the ages has been gauged by the ability and the perseverance of its adherents to work on its behalf. It is impossible to work for any Cause without at least to some degree living its teachings. Working for it is already living its precepts; there can hardly be a movement whose precept is: 'Do not work on my behalf!'

It is therefore by the same measuring rod of work accomplished or sacrifices made on its behalf, that the Theosophical Movement can appraise its own membership at any time.

The question which is being asked more often than any other, on the part of people who for some reason or another thought it advisable to become members of the Society, is: "Very little or nothing, unless you do something for the cause of Theosophy first." Most members put the cart before the horse. They think, and many of us are negligent in not pointing out the real state of affairs to them, that the Movement needs them very badly, and that therefore something very remarkable is going to be done by the abstraction they call 'Theosophy,' and they will be the beneficiary of this marvel, just because they accorded us the great privilege of joining us. The actual state of affairs is quite the reverse. It is they who are in dire need of the teachings of Theosophy, and they will absorb its truths in direct proportion to the amount of interest, work, devotion and self-abnegation they put into the Cause. If they do not understand this, they might just as well withdraw from the Society; the Society does not need them. It is glad to have them. But it does not need them. It needs, actually needs, and is looking all over the wide world for, chiefly workers for the Theosophical Cause, men and women who, whether rich or poor, whether educated or not, are willing to enter the theosophical family as fellow-toilers, instead of drones, and put their shoulders to the common wheel, and push, push, push. Whenever new members or students are unaware of this fact, it is the Officers of Lodges, and the field-workers, and the other active members, who are responsible for the negligence in not explaining to people what the Theosophical Movement is looking for and is in need of.

As has been so clearly said by William Q. Judge (Dept. of Branch Work, Paper No. 8, New York, Nov., 1890.):

"Many persons, however, think that they can belong to the Society, and while negatively selfish, that is, ready and willing to sit down and hear others expound theosophical doctrine and never wok for the body themselves, they may receive benefit in the way of comprehension of the doctrines of man and nature which are promulgated among us. But they forget a law in these matters of great importance, one, indeed, that they may not be willing to admit, and which is much opposed to our modern ideas of the powers and functions of the human mind. It is that such an attitude by reason of its selfishness builds up a hard wall between their minds and the very truths they wish to know. I speak of an actual dynamic effect which is as plain to the eye of the trained seer as is any object to the healthy eye."

Truth, like the passion for life, craves expansion. It is of the very essence of Truth to universalize itself. It is a leaven which insists upon leavening the whole. It acknowledges no barriers, it restricts no boundaries. It is upon this simple fact of being that has been based throughout the ages the missionary urge on the part of all movements, good and bad. And let it be remembered that there has hardly ever been a movement of any kind that did not originate in some [5] seed of Truth, however small and soon obscured.

A Movement, therefore, which does not exhibit any marked degree of that urge to universalize itself, is dying spiritually, and its decay and disappearance is only a matter of time. The Theosophical Movement, as a Movement, still exhibits many a healthy sign of that inner urge. Can that much be said with regard to many an individual Lodge or group of Lodges in more than one metropolis of the land?

What is needed today more than anything else in the Theosophical Movement, we feel, is faith in this aggressive universalism of truth; it is our only escape from smallness, parochialism, querulousness and stagnation.

The spiritual passion for Truth demands for its Apostles men and women who feel its urge, who can interpret its message and lay bare its imperatives. Among free men, always new leaders arise to meet the challenge of great emergencies. These are the men who deny the don'ts and can'ts of conservative years, who go out and dare the impossible.

Our clamant need, as a Movement, is for leaders of thought. Every member a leader! Was this not the in junction of Dr. de Purucker to the membership? Workers are wanted, not mere well-wishers. Active centers of spiritual light, not mere names on the rostrum. Men and women who are possessed by the aggressive universalism of Truth and are prepared to 'damn the consequences.' The choice between self-complacent intellectual gratification and an intelligent, aggressive, but kindly, self-sacrificing work for the Cause of

Theosophy, is the difference between a sad wreck cast out on the sand banks of thought in years to come, and a Society whose every fiber responds with a quickened fire to the keynote of the Incoming Age. It is up to you!

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WHY A THEOSOPHICAL SOCIETY?
Sven Eek
President, Lodge No. 60, Theosophical Society.

The original founders of the 'Theosophical Movement who are known as Masters M. and K.H. decided well over a century ago to start a Society for the promulgation of certain aims and purposes along religious, philosophical and scientific lines. Throughout the entire period of the last century they were able to find only one person psychologically and spiritually fit to carry out the work they were planning. That person's role in history is yet to be fully established; she was Helena Petrovna Blavatsky.

It is not difficult to trace the outpourings of at least a hundred religious and pseudo-religious bodies to her teachings, or more correctly to the teachings which the Masters permitted her to give out. In the hierarchical structure to which M. and K.H. belonged there were superiors to them who issued solemn warnings against the giving out of India's sacred teachings to the as yet spiritually untutored minds of the white races beyond the waters of Kalapani (black waters). But the die was cast, and these men accepted the responsibility for The Theosophical Movement which has affected the lives of literally millions of people. The simple teachings of Karman (as thou [6] sowest, so shalt thou also reap) and Reincarnation have again been brought to the Western world. Commonplace in the East, and during the first centuries of nascent Christianity, they have since been forgotten or obscured by dogmatic accretions of organized religions. The deeper teachings, the Yoga of living, the why's and wherefore's of existence, have cautiously been taught those willing and ready to listen.

In the curious skein of the evolution of races, nations and individual men, we can discern the historical role played by greater and lesser teachers, the 'Saviors of Mankind.' All races and all cyclic time-periods have had them. These 'Saviors' had their disciples to whom certain teachings were entrusted. The Vedas of India, The Egyptian Book of the Dead, the Bible, the Koran, The Scandinavian Eddas constitute their written records. Strong religious bodies have been founded to spread the teachings, not always gently, and later generations decided that their revelation was the only one ever to have been presented to the world. As a result, the teachers have been deified and the masses crucified.

A spiritual inertia has been fostered by churches which claimed to be the mediators between their deities or God and the faithful. An impotent waiting for a new Christ or a mightier Buddha, for a Messiah who is going to turn the trick of leading man to salvation, has been setting the clock back. People do not seem to trust their own intuitions or their own spiritual strength; somebody else must do the job for them. They have not studied their own teachings exhorting them to look within for their 'immanent Christos' or 'inner Buddha.' The god within is not concerned with niceties of doctrine, but looks at the knowledge of man as more or as less complete. Religions are different facets of the same truth, but adapted to different peoples and civilizations. Like science they are being revealed or veiled as circumstances demand.

Do we need a Theosophical Society? One answer could be: 'In unity there is strength.' Let us remember that there is neither a religion nor any science higher than Truth. In essence they are one, as all men are one. Let us study the teachings of all Sacred Writings with an open mind. Let our Christ within be the Monitor, and let us work for knowledge and wisdom and thereby for a happier world.

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SAN DIEGO THEOSOPHICAL ACTIVITIES
Theosophical Center, 2772 Fourth Ave., San Diego 3; 'phone: Jackson 1740.

Public Meetings Sunday Afternoons 3:00 O'Clock.
General Topic: Theosophy for the Asking.
Chairman Dr. Louis Van Norman.
March 4th Dorothy Friend and Dan Peterson, Discussion.
March 11th Claire Wesner (Covina) 'Occultism and the Occult Arts."
March 18th Mora Forbes and Jean Palfey, Discussion.
March 25th Dr. Joseph Fox and T. T. Clemeslia "Religious Unity."

Every Discussion will take the form of question and answer by the speakers of the afternoon.
For information on all Theosophical activities in San Diego, consult Harold W. Dempster, Regional Vice-President, 3131 McCall St., San Diego 6, Calif; 'phone: Bayview 6839 (or Franklin 3151). [7]

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OUR FORGOTTEN PAST
Elizabeth M. Geiger

In any discussion of the doctrine of Reincarnation there is one question which inevitably arises, for someone is certain to ask: "If Reincarnation is a fact, why do we not remember our past lives?" While those who put this question will usually admit that Reincarnation is the most logical explanation of life with its inequalities, its injustices, its tragedies and bitter sorrows, they nevertheless maintain that all theories regarding the soul of man are based upon premises which cannot be established by actual experiences in human consciousness, and that in the absence of proof in actual facts, all reasoning based on the doctrine of Reincarnation is unreliable.

The statement that some people do remember their past lives, while many have flashes of memory, does not convince those who demand physical proof in the form of concrete facts as the only basis for truth. Yet these people unhesitatingly accept many things which cannot be physically demonstrated; for our deepest, most profound and most precious experiences, the things we really know because they are part of our inmost being, are precisely those which we cannot demonstrate or prove to others. What, for example, is the mathematical, the chemical, or even the intellectual demonstration as expressible in language, of that deepest quality of life which we call Love? It can be understood only by those who have experienced this emotion in some of its phases. And so must it be with the language of the soul.

We may therefore ask whether the fact that the majority of people have no recollection of their past lives is proof that they did not formerly exist? Have they any recollection of the events of their infancy, or can they recall much, if anything, of their early childhood? How few of us remember the events of even recent years, outside of a few scattered instances, most of which are recalled only in connection with some other more important event. Are not the ordinary occurrences of our past rather unimportant after all, and like those of our present life completely forgotten? In fact, memory of the details of even our recent past is impossible, according to Prof. Knight, who says:

"The power of the conservative faculty, though relatively great, is extremely limited. We forget the larger portion of our experience soon after we have passed through it, and we should be able to recall the particulars of all our past years, filling in all the missing links of consciousness since we entered on our present life, before we could be in a position to remember our prenatal experience. Birth must necessarily be preceded by crossing the river of oblivion, while the capacity for fresh acquisition survives, and the garnered wealth of old experience determines the character of the new."

We may say with confidence that there is an excellent reason why most people do not remember their past lives, for this absence of memory is in harmony with the principle of the evolution of the soul, and in most cases the very nature of the evolutionary work which requires reincarnation necessitates a loss of memory, for it is of great importance that the mind should he concentrated on the evolutionary work required at the present tune. If memory persisted from incarnation to incarnation, the mind would wander over the events of thousands of past years, and would encompass a vast drama of tragedy and of comedy in which we played our parts, not always with credit to ourselves. For we would recall not only our triumphs, but our failures and humiliations. And who could endure the memory of all the blunders of which we were guilty in those past lives? Is it not enough that we should have to recall with much mortification the many mistakes we have made in this present [8] life? But consider the crushing humiliation that would be ours if we could remember the stupid, even evil acts of our past lives. Most of us will agree that the remembrance of the follies of which we have been guilty in this incarnation constitutes a sufficiently heavy burden for us to bear, without the added weight of painful recollections of what may have been very inglorious existences. No, let us be grateful that we forget, and let us realize that it is a merciful provision that veils the past, for if we would master the lessons of this life we must not take other lives into the field of our consciousness.

But it should not be supposed that loss of memory includes loss of the knowledge we had acquired in this or previous lives. The gist of knowledge gained in past ages represents skill which has no dependence whatever on memory; and in this connection reference to the not infrequent cases of amnesia brought to our attention may properly be made. We are all familiar with well authenticated cases in which perfectly healthy, normal people have completely lost the thread of their personality, forgetting their own names and every detail of their lives, even the very existence of those they dearly loved. These persons disappear from their homes, and often take up life in a new environment where they form new relationships, and frequently embark on successful business ventures, for their intelligence is in no way impaired. They remain in this state for months, and sometimes for years, until something occurs which brings back a restoration of memory; then in a flash, the past in all its details comes back to them. In illustration of this phenomenon here is the story of a young officer in the British forces in World War I.

On New Year's Eve of 191617 this man was seated with about a dozen other officers in a dugout on the Western Front, when he heard the warning sound of an imminent mine explosion. He quickly grasped what he thought was his coat, and as he was thrusting his arms into the sleeves he was thrown to the ground by a terrific explosion. He awoke to consciousness in a war hospital far behind the front, his mind a blank concerning his identity, for he could remember neither his name nor that of anyone he had ever known. The doctors and nurses in the hospital told him that he was Captain de Montalt, a Canadian officer, and showed him letters found in the pocket of the coat he was putting on at the time of the explosion. Lacking the names and addresses of relatives or friends, as well as any conflicting evidence, and remembering nothing of his life before the explosion, he accepted the name. When he recovered from his injuries, he transferred to the Royal Air Force, and received a commission as Second Lieutenant. A crash while flying over the lines invalided him out of service, and he finally received a 100% disablement pension from the British Government. Shortly before this, a young officer who had been fatally wounded, died in de Montalt's arms, with a last request that de Montalt should visit his sister when he returned to London. This de Montalt did, with the result that he fell in love with the girl and married her. They lived for years in a marital happiness that was marred only by de Montalt's lost memory of his past. One day nearly ten years after his marriage, de Montalt, while waiting for a bus on a street corner, overheard a couple of men talking in a foreign languages, which, to his great astonishment he understood perfectly, although up to that moment he supposed that he knew no language but English. Now he discovered that he also knew Swedish, and he began to have doubts of his identity as a Canadian, but there was nothing he could do about it. Some time after this, while waiting in a government office to interview an official about a pension, he [9] picked up a copy of the Swedish Statskalendern which listed the names of all the important officers in the Swedish army. Glancing through the book, his eye lighted on a name that seemed strangely familiar Gustaf Duner, an officer in the Swedish army. Suddenly he realized that this name was his own, that he was Gustaf Duner, and immediately memories of Sweden flooded his mind. He at once wrote to the address given in the Statskalendern, and received a reply which informed him that: "Herr Gerstaf Duner was unfortunately killed on the Western Front at the end of 1916. I am his brother." De Montalt went at once to Sweden where he was reunited with his joyous mother and brother. Gustaf Duner had earned a commission in the Swedish army, from which he resigned to fight with the British Forces. The coat he was wearing on that eventful New Year's day belonged to a Captain de Montalt who was killed in the explosion, and for ten years afterward, to all the world, de Montalt lived, and Gustaf Duner was dead.

No one would think of asserting that Gustaf Duner had not lived before the explosion, because he could remember nothing whatever of his life before the mine exploded. Yet that is the argument that is continually heard urged against Reincarnation, and this illogical attitude will doubtless continue unless people realize and are willing to admit that they remember very little of their present existences.

The failure to remember past incarnations will be more clearly understood if we bear in mind one important fact: that the personality here on the physical plane is only a fragment of the entire consciousness of the soul. Our true and permanent life exists in the Ego, and the Ego merely sends out a ray from itself. This ray, which is only a tiny particle of the Ego, is what we know as the personality, which, when it has gathered experience and finished its work, is drawn back and incorporated into the Ego whence it came. During incarnation the personality is animated by only a very little of the Ego's vast intelligence, and this explains why we make so many mistakes.

While the majority of people have no remembrance of past lives, there are certainly some who do remember, and just here we cannot do better than quote what H.P. Blavatsky says about memory: "While memory is physical and evanescent and depends on the physiological conditions of the brain ... we call reminiscence the memory of the soul. And it is this memory which gives the assurance to almost every human being, whether he understands it or not, of his having lived before and having to live again ... To get convinced of the fact of reincarnation and past lives, one must put oneself in rapport with one's real permanent Ego, not one's evanescent memory." (The Key to Theosophy, pp. 125, 128). This means that those who do have positive recollections of past lives have reached a higher state of consciousness, although it is usually only in a minute degree.

There are, however, many people who have fragmentary recollections which flash across the mind bringing a feeling that there is something familiar about a perfectly strange place, a conviction of having been there before, and memory struggles painfully to bring into the field of consciousness the former connection between the scene and the individual. Charles Dickens, in one of his hooks of foreign travel, tells of a bridge in Italy which produced a weird effect upon him. He says: "If I had been murdered there in some former life, I could not have seemed to remember the place more thoroughly, or with a more emphatic chilling of the blood; and the real remembrance of it acquired in that moment is so strengthened by the imaginary recollection that I can never forget it." Many instances could he given of the [10] experiences of individuals in remembering incidents of their former lives, but they would not supply the proof demanded by those who doubt the truth of reincarnation, and we have no other means of convincing them. But to those who have had glimpses of their last existences, and particularly where they have been clear-cut and vivid, there comes a certainty and conviction that in some cases is as real as the certainty and conviction of their present life, and which is proof against all argument to the contrary. To such people the fact of previous incarnations is as much a matter of consciousness as the existence of last year yesterday a moment ago, or even the present moment which slips away while we attempt to consider it. And those who have this consciousness of past lives, even when the details are vague, intuitively accept the teaching regarding the future lives of the soul. The soul that recognizes its oldness also feels the certainty of survival not as a mere matter of faith, but as a matter of consciousness, the boundaries of time being transcended.

We must seek what we would find there is no other law of growth or evolution. To reach the Light, to acquire the power of clear sight, to see things as they are, one must seek the Light persistently and continuously through many lives. The field in which we sow and reap is boundless and eternal. The Sower and the Reaper is the same immortal Self. To one life the sowing, to another the reaping. There is no miracle of growth or transformation either of the inner man or of the outer. The seed must he sown and watered before it can spring up, and whether we sow wheat or tares, the Law is the same.

"Such is the Law which moves to righteousness,
Which none at last can turn aside or stay;
The heart of it is Love; the end of it
Is Peace and Consummation sweet.
Obey!"

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KARMIC AGENTS
William Quan Judge
(Reprinted from The Theosophical Forum, July, 1893.)

Does an individual when acting as an agent for Karma, entail any Karmic consequences upon himself because of the acts thus committed?

... The questioner assumes in the first ten words of the question that a human being sometimes is not an agent of Karma. According to my studies, and as I think inevitable according to the law of Karma, there is no time when a human being is not an agent of Karma, for in every act and thought we are carrying out Karma, making new Karma, suffering old Karma, or producing effects on other people, or all these together ... I take it that the questioner means to ask whether one is justified in attempting, of his own motion, to administer as judge, jury, and executioner, to another the effects of Karma. This is involved in the question, as well as whether any consequences are entailed upon a person so acting ... Certainly both the actor in the case and the person to whom the punishment or reward is administered must have consequences entailed upon them, because the "Karmic agent" is the centre from which the action flows, and upon whom it must react, and the other person is the person who receives the present consequences. Merely to say to yourself that you are enforcing a right or administering what you conclude is punishment or reward does not absolve you from the consequences, whatever those may be. [11] And those consequences will come to you in two ways. First, through your own attitude, and second, from what you set up in the other person. Involved in the first is a seemingly third possibility, which is a possible violation by you through ignorance of a law of nature. For instance, if you assume to administer punishment, considering yourself a Karmic agent, it is more than possible that you are simply gratifying some old strife or ill-feeling, under the guise of a judicial enforcement of right or punishment for wrong. We see this possibility every day in those cases where a person, declaring himself to be impartial and judicial, administers on the one hand to persons whom he does not particularly like punishment which he considers their just due, and withholds similar punishment from another person for whom he has such a regard that he fails to administer punishment, but exercises instead forgiveness and charity. This being a common human experience, does it not indicate that inasmuch as a person is through old Karmic likes and affinities led to be kind and charitable through what is called partiality, he may on the other hand, through old dislikes and antipathies, be led by a repulsion to administer punishment, when he might as well have exercised forgiveness? Each man, I think, can be left to himself to decide what is his duty in redressing wrong done to another, which redressing involves perhaps the punishment of a third. But in my opinion no one is wise who considers himself a Karmic agent for any purpose. Further ... the term "Karmic agent" has a technical significance under which only certain persons are so considered; that is, the larger class of men are not Karmic agents, except in the mere sense that they are in the very act of life making or experiencing Karma in the mass. A few persons are what is known as "Karmic agents," that is, human beings who by a certain course of training and previous life have become concentrated agents for the bringing about of certain definite effects which are well foreseen by the trained and initiated seer. This is one of the declarations of the Initiates who are supposed to know about these matters, and therefore any person assuming to be a Karmic agent may possibly be assuming too much altogether, and he bringing himself within the range of laws which will operate upon him with tenfold force in future lives. It is therefore more charitable, more wise, more kind, more theosophic to follow the words of Jesus, Buddha, and hosts of other Teachers which direct us to forgive our brother seventy times seven times, which tell us that charity covers a multitude of sins, and which warn us against the self-righteousness that might induce us to presume we have been raised up from the foundation of the world to correct abuses in other men's actions rather than to attend to our own duty.

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The human receptacle is always the expression of the Inner attitudes.

The channel for faithful recording of the deep Truths of Inner Being becomes clear, as day by day, little by little, the Consciousness is washed clear of little flotsams and jetsams of self.

The one who becomes a recorder a channel of records is tire one who, having turned the thought Inward correcting only the little self, with no desire to correct others except by example, waits in Humility for the Voice of the Silence to speak.

The Path is long and arduous. The pitfalls many, but "Arise Strong heart and try again!" is the message to the one who feels inwardly that he has failed outwardly. The little cares become magnified unless this is done, and the feeling of failure can grow through self-condemnation.

A Pilgrim [12]

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"THEOSOPHY SPEAKS"
Reincarnation (continued)
Transcribed Radio Broadcast of January 16, 1944 over Station KMPC, Beverly Hills, California.

Announcer: "Theosophy Speaks!" ... "Light for the Mind - Love for the Heart - Understanding for the Intellect."

Last Sunday, in presenting our third discussion on REINCARNATION, "Theosophy Speaks" stated that man is mercifully given other chances to perfect himself, through repeated lives on earth. We said that our Spiritual Self never dies; that when death comes to s man, he casts off his physical garment, which disintegrates. But the higher parts of our Nature go into a period of rest and recuperation, withdrawn for a time from active life on earth. There is nothing mysterious in this we see it in the way Nature operates. Vegetation sleeps in the winter and awakens in the spring we sleep at night to awaken in the morning to a new day, a new chance. Death is but a longer, more complete sleep after which we awaken to a new life, bringing with us the CHARACTER we have made for ourselves through thoughts, emotions and actions during our previous lives. We concluded by saying that we will all travel the Road of Reincarnation until we have learned life's lessons of self-discipline, self-knowledge and self-mastery through our own self-directed efforts. Thus, Reincarnation is Hope another chance and eventual Victory. Today's transcribed discussion will be the last one of the Reincarnation series. Our Scene: The home of a Theosophist. He is about to leave friends just arrived to say goodbye ....

BILL: (sighs) Been feeling fagged out lately. How about you fellows?

HAL: I do too. I think it's the war. Trouble, confusion, tragedy especially on a worldwide scale are bound to affect people that way.

BILL: (disgusted) Well, I don't like it! Sometimes I wish I were on another more peaceful planet! How is it all going to end and when!

TOM: Now look here why be morbid about it? It's during times of stress that people individually, and nations, can make the biggest progress.

BILL: Progress! What progress have we made anyway? We're supposed to be civilized, yet wars, hates and intolerances get worse all the time. Is that progress?

TOM: It depends on the point of view. Now, understand, I'm not approving wars arid intolerances and I don't say that progress depends on them but, as a Theosophist believing in the Laws of Consequence and Reincarnation, I can see how the world is gradually improving in spite of these things.

BILL: Well, I don't. Civilization either improves and outlaws wars or civilization is breaking up because of all the wars. It's got to be one or the other.

HAL: It seems I heard of civilizations cracking up before and still the world goes on. Look at the Egyptian, the great Chinese eras the Greek. Not to mention the Roman.

BILL: That's true enough.

HAL: The trouble is that too few of us know history. We're too inclined to erase our opinions on what has happened in the past few hundred years.

TOM: I think so too. The human race is millions of years old. Civilizations have come and gone. There have been Golden Ages and Dark Ages. And as pilgrims, you and I have contributed for better or for worse to both golden and dark ages. We've all been here many times be fore. Dr. de Purucker, late Leader of the Point Loma Theosophical Society, put it this way in one of his books: "Growth is eternal. Evolution is without beginning and is endless. We pass through all the mansions of life, as the ages of Eternity slowly stream by into the limitless ocean of the Past."

HAL: I like that. The way he puts it, and what he says. [13]

BILL: Are you saying that perhaps I am responsible for the present conditions in the world?

TOM: Yes. Not you alone, of course all of us. We've contributed in some measure or we wouldn't be here now to help work out these conditions to a more satisfactory conclusion than we did before. We're being given another chance.

BILL: Tom, I don't see how a Dark Age can follow a Golden Age.

HAL: That's right. I thought evolution meant progress.

TOM: It does. But the important tiring is that evolution or growth doesn't proceed in a straight line, like railroad tracks from Los Angeles to New York . . . A fairly good explanation of the process of evolution is an ordinary spring like the one on your screen door. It is a spiral and in an upright position, each curve progresses at a slightly higher level than the last.

HAL: Then evolution proceeds slowly but always at a higher level. So that no matter how slight the progress may seem still progress has been made. Is that right, Tom?

TOM: Yes. Because all evolutionary growth is slow and gradual and it includes spiritual, moral and intellectual progress, as well as physical. Therefore, we must have a long-range view of evolution. And though Bill here seems to think the human race has not made any progress because we still have wars and hates in the larger sense, nothing can stop evolution. As Dr. de Purucker said, "The ages of Eternity slowly stream by."

BILL: But we ought to be improving as people, as the ages stream by, shouldn't we? And why aren't we?

TOM: The matter of wars, hates, injustices, and so forth, is concerned with Karman and Reincarnation. Let me try to explain. In our long evolutionary journey, we live many times. And in those many lives we make many mistakes, such as greed, injustice, ignoring duties or obligations and hurting someone we may ruin someone's reputation and life through gossip we may be very selfish we may inflict our will upon others to make them do wrong. These are all mistakes we've made. And all must he rectified. Nature is harmony and balance and when we distort that balance, make discord of the harmony, we must some day set it right. And we don't make it right in heaven or hell. We make it right in the VERY PLACE the mistakes were made.

BILL: But why?

TOM: Let me answer that with a question. When a farmer sows seeds, doesn't he harvest his crops where the seeds were sown? He doesn't move to another farm in another state to do it. It just isn't logical. And let me give you a word of advice . . . In logic there is strength. Don't accept as Truth anything that seems illogical to you. Question it. By questioning and pondering, sometimes illogical things bring out wonderful facts and truths. But don't necessarily believe a thing just because someone says it is so. We have minds to THINK with and we should use them.

BILL: But how can we know how far along in evolution we are?

HAL: I think you've reached the HUMAN stage, Bill.

(Laughs)

BILL: Sometimes I wonder. What I mean is: How do I know how much of a worm I am?

(Laughs)

TOM: Well, Bill, you're a bit stubborn about Reincarnation but I've known you long enough to know you're a good guy you don't have to worry, anyway. However, if you want to find out about yourself, STUDY yourself. We all should do more of it. You can measure yourself, Bill, by your character. Analyze your faults and virtues, your weaknesses and strengths, your sense of duty and obligation, your degree of tolerance and sympathetic [14] understanding of your fellowmen. When you get the answer that will give you some idea of your stage of evolution just how much you've accomplished in your many lives.

BILL: That doesn't tell us though who we've been before whether a king, a servant, a priest, a musician, or what. And that's what is interesting.

TOM: Bill, what difference does it make who or what you've BEEN? The important thing is what are you NOW. The details are terribly unimportant. Because you're a prince in one life, you won't necessarily be a KING In your next! You may be a pauper or a gardener. It all depends on what EXPERIENCE you need to improve your real Self what lessons you require. If you've had an operation, do you want to dwell on how many surgical instruments the doctor used, prow many stitches he took, how many days you were in the hospital, and so forth? Of course not. The only worthwhile fact is that NOW you are well, NOW you have vitality, Now you want to forget you were ever sick. Isn't that so?

BILL: Sure it is.

HAL: Well, Tom, the most important things to remember, as I see it, are these: That all men are engaged in a tremendously long evolutionary journey that some day will take us to the portals of Divinity then we won't be men any longer. We will have graduated from the human stage of evolution into a higher grade.

TOM: Yes.

HAL: During that long journey, we live and die many times. All journeys are tiring. And about 70odd years is about as long a trip as man can take at one time. So he dies, in order to rest and recuperate. Then he comes back, and picks up where he left off. Right?

TOM: Yes.

HAL: During the 70year journeys he makes many mistakes some intensional, some because of ignorance. Just the same, all mistakes must he rectified. This results in pain, suffering and troubles. And through these hard knocks he learns the wisdom of honesty, sympathy, forbearance, unselfishness, compassion and self-control.

BILL: And wars, crimes, and things like that are self-imposed mistakes that men make.

TOM: Mistakes that they make, and must rectify. We're all part of the human race, all contributing to the faults and virtues of the world. And it's up to each person to change his own way of life for the better. The desire must come from within the heart of each person. And I must make it clear, that Theosophy's mission is to REMIND men to look within for the truths already there, hidden or ignored. Reincarnation, Evolution and Karman are keys that will unlock the doors to the treasure chest of TRUTH.

HAL: Strikes me it takes courage and honesty to start that search, Tom.

TOM: It does.

BILL: Well, I've decided to stop being an ostrich, burying my head in the sands of fear. I admit I've been afraid of Reincarnation and Karman because they might disturb the serenity of my life.

HAL: Someone once said that contentment, carried to extreme, can become the vice of self-satisfaction.

TOM: Well, I wouldn't put it that way but it is true that sometimes we have to be aroused from our lethargy.

BILL: I amand thanks for all you've done, Tom.

HAL: You bet and you can be sure that from now on I'm going to do some studying of my own.

TOM: It's been a privilege to meet and exchange ideas about the teachings of Theosophy.

HAL: We'll get together again.

(Ad lib goodbyes from all.)

*

THOUGHTS BY THE WAYSIDE

Passing through a little country town one day, attention was called to a very heated argument that was going on, in front of the General Store. It was in the days just before the recent National Elections. As Stop, Look and Listen, is the axiom that the Wayfarer follows, a halt was called, for a few minutes. Back and forward went the argument, being carried on by two opposing partisans of the two principal Political Parties. Bitter invectives were indulged in by both. Each one contented himself with attacking the other party. Neither had anything Constructive to offer. Both were satisfied with trying to tear to pieces the other fellow's candidate. INSINCERITY was depicted on their faces, in their words and by the tone of their voices. Sadly, the Wayfarer continued his trek towards a place uncontaminated by human kind.

Such a place was found beside a gurgling brook, and in the shade of a spreading tree. Pondering over this matter of man's common INSINCERITY in all he says and does, attention was called to the teeming nonhuman life that abounded all around. The brook was full of little fish, the ground was covered with little ants. Insects of winged variety flew about on all sides. Small animals started here and there. Birds chirped happily in all the trees. There was no INSINCERITY here. There was no PRETENSE. Only NATURALNESS.

Even the varied vegetation was absolutely SINCERE in all its actions. The common weed did not ape the beautiful flower; the lowly bush, did not pretend to be a tree. The little fishes were content to be just that, and the ants went about their personal affairs with a true SINCERITY of purpose, which was to look after their own kind and not bother to try and make others over to represent ants.

SINCERITY everywhere, except in the Kingdom of Man. Why? Even the most vicious forms of animal life probably the King Cobra and the Scorpion do not try to conceal their true nature, and do not claim to be anything that they are not. They are all frankly vicious. Even they are SINCERE.

As always, Nature gives the answer to the problem. The teeming animal world, and the congested vegetable kingdom, are not possessed of a self-conscious MIND. Then if a lack of MIND produces SINCERITY, and the possession of it produces INSINCERITY, we have the key to our solution. At once we remember that very small children are always SINCERE their minds have not yet developed. Even the very primitive peoples of the world are usually animated by absolute SINCERITY. Only in our very complex so-called civilized Nations, where MIND runs riot, does INSINCERITY exist.

Now Nature makes no mistakes, so we cannot blame the marvelous gift of MIND. We must blame some obvious misuse of it. Then we remember that all those we know, or read about, who have been dominated more by the HEART than the mind, are always found to be sincere people. Lincoln, for instance. We also know that the HEART is responsive to SOUL impulses, and at once our problem is solved. The MIND still needs the "Gentle breezes of soul wisdom" to govern it; instead of allowing the mind to run wild and concentrate on material things alone. The MIND is dual; part is to control the body, and part to aspire upward and so contact the soul. Whenever it does it, SINCERITY follows.

MORAL: SINCERITY comes from the heart, and not from the mind. When it dominates the being, the MIND becomes HONEST. When the mind becomes HONEST, the body acts with JUSTICE.

And that's just reasonable Theosophy.

The Wayfarer. [Hubert S. Turner] [16]

*

Lodge No. 60 New Place of Meetings

We are glad to announce to all our friends that new and larger quarters have now been secured for the various activities of our Lodge. Henceforth our Lodge Meetings and Public Lectures will be held in the KNIGHTS OF PYTHIAS HALL., 265 SOUTH WESTERN AVENUE, easily accessible by Western Ave. Bus and Car Lines R and S. The new quarters arc comfortable and well adapted to our work.

On February 2nd, the Lodge had a HouseWarming Party at the new location. Close to 150 people were present. We were favored with exquisite guitar selections by our friend-composer, Senor Luis Elorriaga, who also presented his talented pupil Teresita Becerra, who played and sang for us. Mrs. D. W. de Roos, of the Rotterdam Conservatory of Music, inspired us with her beautiful singing. Our good friends from America's Native Races, Whiteflower (Ponca Tribe, Nebraska), Ro Mere (Potawatomie Tribe, Kansas), and Youngplant (Hopi Tribe, Arizona), gave us some remarkable symbolical dances of their Race, accompanied with native music.

In removing our quarters to a new location, the Lodge wishes to express our combined gratitude to Judge Frank C. Finlayson and his gracious wife, Grace Finlayson, for their unusual hospitality over a period of several years. It is in their home that Lodge No. 60 had its inception and grew to its present size. Without their patient and sustained efforts this growth would not have been possible. (See page 2 for schedule of meetings and lectures).

*

"Star Habits and Orbits"
by L. Gordon Plummer & Charles J. Ryan

We wish to recommend very highly this splendid little book, a valuable addition to our Theosophical library. The average person, which means the average student of Theosophy also, has only a hazy notion regarding the simplest facts of Astronomy. No thorough understanding of the deeper teachings of the Ancient Wisdom can possibly be arrived at without at least some knowledge concerning the visible structure and behavior of planets and stars. This new book fills this need. It should be studied by every member of our Society. It is simple, non-technical, yet scientifically correct, and adds the occult backdrop of the whole subject. It combines the usual clarity of Plummer's style, with the unimpeachable scientific accuracy of Dr. Ryan's statements.

This book has another unusual feature. It opens with a Foreword by our great friend, Dr. Gustaf Stromberg, the distinguished astronomer of Mount Wilson Observatory. Everyone interested in the correlation of modern Science with the Ancient Wisdom should pay special attention to his words, which are those of one of the most progressive and spiritually minded thinkers in the field of today's Science. It is in the scientific outlook of Stromberg's type that Theosophy finds its greatest ally.