Mabel Collins

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Mabel Collins is the name under which Mrs. Keningale Cook published her writings. She was an English Theosophist, and author of at least 46 books, including Light on the Path, a perennial favorit among Theosophists.


Early life and education

Minna Mabel Collins on September 9, 1851 at St Peters Port, Guernsey. Her parents were Edward James Mortimer Collins, a self-taught poet and journalist, and Susanna Hubbard, a merchant's daughter. When they married, Mortimer was nineteen years younger than his wife, who already had six children. The family moved frequently, as Mortimer repeatedly overspent and landed in debtors' prisons. "By the time she was twelve years old Minna had begun to write romances and verse herself. She had never attended school – what education she had was from her father. Poetry and philosophy formed the main content of her lessons." [1]

Marriage

Young Minna began a new life when she married Keningale Robert Cook on August 3, 1971 at St. Peters Church in Knowl Hill. He was six years older than she, and was well educated at Rugby and Trinity College in Dublin. He earned several degrees culminating in a Doctorate in Laws in 1875. During the years at Trinity College he was employed by the Post Office dealing with money orders, but by 1875 he had become a stockbroker in London. He published a book of poetry and numerous articles for the magazine Woman. This same magazine began to publish Minna's writings as well. "Almost every issue contained Minna’s or Robert’s writings. They covered a range of subjects but were primarily concerned with education, the role of women and the arts."[2]

HPB and

worked together editing Lucifer

Coues based his charges against HPB on an unsigned and undated note from Mabel Collins which he claimed she sent him in 1885, in response to his inquiry to her concerning the authorship of Light on the Path. See The Theosophical movement, 1875-1950

HPB on Mabel Collins in Light: A Journal of Psychical, Occult, and Mystical Research, Volume 9 - SEE [3]

Writings in periodicals

  • "In the New Forest." The English Illustrated Magazine (June, 1885). Illustrated.
  • "Thoreau: Hermit and Thinker." The Dublin University Magazine (November, 1877).
  • "In a Corner of Bohemia." Tinsley's Magazine, Volume 24-26. Book published serially.
  • "Love Is More Than Life." Home Chimes (1885). Book published serially.

Books

Mabel Collins wrote at least 46 books. These are the English-language titles according to the OCLC Worldcat union catalog[3], listed here by publication date:

  • An Innocent Sinner; a Psychological Romance. London: Tinsley Bros., 1877.
  • Our Bohemia. London: Tinsley Brothers, 1879.
  • In This World: a Novel. London: Chapman and Hall, 1879.
  • Too Red a Dawn. London, 1881.
  • Cobwebs. London: Tinsley Brothers, 1882. Also printed with subtitle "Tales."
  • In the Flower of Her Youth. A Novel.. London, 1883.
  • Viola Fanshawe. A novel. London, 1884.
  • The Story of Helena Modjeska, (Madame Chlapowska). London: W. H. Allen, 1883. Second edition, 1885.
  • Light on the Path. Subtitle "a treatise written for the personal use of those who are ignorant of the eastern wisdom, and who desire to enter within its influence." (1885). Published in numerous editions and languages.
  • The Prettiest Woman in Warsaw. London: Ward and Downey, 1885. New York: G. Munro, 1886 (and 1887 5th edition).
  • Lord Vanecourt's Daughter. A Novel. New York: Harper & Bros., 1886. Cleveland: Arthur Westbrook Co., 1890, 1985.
  • Through the Gates of Gold. London: Ward and Downey, 1887 and Boston: Roberts Brothers, 1887. Also, Chicago: Donohue, Henneberry, 1890; London: Theosophical Publishing Society, 1913 and numerous other editions.
  • The Blossom and the Fruit Subtitle: "a true story of a black magician." London, 1887. Sydney, Australia, 1887. Reprinted New York, J.W. Lovell Co., 1889. London : Theosophical Pub. Society, 1910. Advertised as "a tale of mystery and adventure."
  • Ida: an Adventure in Morocco. London: Ward & Downey, 1890.
  • The Confessions of a Woman. New York: J.W. Lovell, 1890.
  • Idyll of the White Lotus (1890). Advertised as "an occult story." Numerous editions.
  • Morial the Mahatma. New York : United States Book Co., 1891. New York, Lovell, Gestefeld & Co. 1892.
  • Suggestion. New York: Lovell, Gestefeld & Co., 1892.
  • Juliet’s Lovers. London: Ward & Downey, 1893.
  • The Story of the Year. Subtitle: "a record of feasts and ceremonies." London: George Redway, 1895.
  • Green Leaves. London: Kegan Paul, Trench, Trubner & Co., Ld., 1895.
  • The Star Sapphire. London, 1896. Boston: Roberts Bros., 1896.
  • Pleasure and Pain: an Essay in Practical Occultism Addressed to Readers of "Light on the Path" . London: Isis Publishing Co., 1896.
  • The Illumined Way; a Guide to Neophytes, Being a Sequel to "Light on the Path". Chicago, Ill.: The Yogi Publication Society, 1800s.
  • When Love Is True, or, The Story of an Heiress. New York: Street & Smith, 1902.
  • The Scroll of the Disembodied Man. London: John M. Watkins, 1904.
  • A Cry from Afar. Subtitle: "to students of Light on the Path." Percy Lund, Humphries and Co., 1905. Reprinted New York, Theosophical Publishing Company, 1907; London, Theosophical Publishing Society, 1913; London, 1954.
  • Illusions. London: Theosophical Publishing Society, 1905. Essays on the inner side of nature, illustrated by actual psychic experiences.
  • Love's Chaplet. London: Theosophical Publishing Society, 1905. A short treatise on the inner life.
  • The Awakening. London: Theosophical Publishing Society, 1906 and 1915. An account of how Light on the Path came to be. Excerpted in The Temple Artisan article "Death - Life's Great Portal."
  • Fragments of Thought and Life. Subtitle: "being seven essays, and seven fables in illustration of the essays." London: The Thesophical Publishing Society, 1908.
  • Outlawed. A Novel on the Woman Suffrage Question. London: Henry J. Drame, 1908.
  • One Life One Law. Subtitle: "Thou Shall Not Kill." London: Theosophical Publishing Society, 1909. Wheaton, Ill.: Theosophical Press, 1938.
  • The Builders. London: The Thesophical Publishing Society, 1910.
  • The Story of Sensa. Subtitle: "An Interpretation of the Idyll of the White Lotus." London: Theosophical Publishing Society, 1911. New York: J.W. Lovelle, 1913 and Los Angeles: Theosophical Publishing House, 1913, 1920.
  • The Transparent Jewel. London: W. Rider & Son, 1912. On the Aphorisms of Yoga compiled by Patañjali. With the text of Sutras in English, partly in the translation by Manilala Nabhubhai Dvivedi, partly in that by Tukarama Tatya.
  • When the Sun Moves Northward. Subtitle: "being a treatise on the six sacred months: containing the mystic ritual from the Story of the year and the teaching concerning the resurrection from Green leaves." London: The Thesophical Publishing Society, 1912. London: Theosophical Publishing House, 1923. Chicago, Ill.: Theosophical Press, 1923. Wheaton, IL: Theosophical Press, 1948 and 1963.
  • The Locked Room. A True Story of Experiences in Spiritualism. London, 1920.
  • The Crucible. London: The Theosophical Publishing Society, 1914. In September-October 1914, MC wrote her prediction that World War I, which had commenced the previous month, would turn into a crucible for humanity. She wrote of her experiences visiting wounded soldiers, and of talking with members of "Kitchener's Army."
  • As the Flower Grows. London: Theosophical Publishing Society, 1915. Also, London: Theosophical Publishing House, 1919. Subtitle: "some visions and an interpretation, in two parts.
  • Our Glorious Future Subtitle: the Interpretation of "Light on the Path". Edinburgh: Theosophical Book Shop, 1917 (2nd edition).
  • Dreams. London : T. Fisher Unwin, 1892 and New York: H.M. Caldwell Co., 1890s with Olive Schreiner. New York, Home Book Co. 1890. New York : Wilmore Andrews, 1890s.

Impact of her writings

Translated into numerous languages. Dutch, Slovenian

Idyll of the White Lotus was adapted into a play by Maud Hoffman Sensa, a Mystery Play in Three Acts.[4]

Notes

  1. Kim Farnell, "The Many Lives of Mabel Collins," Theosophical History Conference 2003, available at [1]
  2. Kim Farnell, "The Many Lives of Mabel Collins," Theosophical History Conference 2003, available at [2]
  3. OCLC Worldcat...........
  4. Published in 1950 by Theosophical University Press in Covina, California.

Additional resources