Maha Chohan

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Maha Chohan is a compound term meaning "great chohan". It is applied to a certain Adept whose spiritual attainment is superior to that of Masters K. H. and M.. In The Mahatma Letters he is frequently referred as the "boss", "Master" or "chief".H. P. Blavatsky defined it as follows:

Maha Chohan (Sk.). The chief of a spiritual Hierarchy, or of a school of Occultism; the head of the trans-Himalayan mystics.[1]

In a letter to Col. Olcott, Mahatma K. H. referred to the Maha Chohan as he "to whose insight the future lies like an open page".[2] In a letter to Mohini M. Chatterji he said: "One far greater than myself has kindly consented to survey the whole situation".[3]

The Maha Chohan had an active influence in the development of the Theosophical Society. He allowed Mahatma K. H. to correspond with Messrs. A. O. Hume and A. P. Sinnett,[4] and later gave the consent for them to form an Anglo-Indian branch of the Theosophical Society "solely under the express and unalterable condition that the new Society should be founded as a Branch of the Universal Brotherhood".[5]

Maha Chohan Letter

The Maha Chohan Letter, also known as the "Great Master's Letter," was produced around 1881. It is a summary by Mahatma K.H. of a conversation held with the Maha Chohan in reference to some arguments A. P. Sinnett and A. O. Hume were posing about reforming the nature of the Theosophical Society. This is considered to be the most important letter received from the Mahatmas, for it contains the views of the Maha Chohan on the Society.

None of the other Mahatma Letters are attributed to the Maha Chohan, but his directives are made known in letters written by the Mahatma K.H. and Mahatma M..

New Maha-Chohan

Some authors belonging to the Theosophical Society (Adyar) claimed that there is now a new Maha Chohan. Joy Mills wrote:

Mary K. Neff, in her personal copy of LBS, inserted a marginal note: "There was now a new one; the holder of the office had changed." While she does not document this statement, it is underscored by Fritz Kunz near the conclusion of his article "The Ray Key," published in The Theosophist in 1935:

The Personage who occupied the office of Mahachohan on our globe when the T.S. was first instituted and during its early years has given place to another. . . . The current office holder, in response to the needs of the time, is in appearance ascetic, incisive, and rapid and final in his decisions. The needs of our time, rapid in movement, have evoked him.[6]


  1. Helena Petrovna Blavatsky, The Theosophical Glossary (Krotona, CA: Theosophical Publishing House, 1973), 200.
  2. C. Jinarajadasa, Letters from the Masters of the Wisdom First Series, No. 16 (Adyar, Madras: Theosophical Publishing House, 1988), 43.
  3. C. Jinarajadasa, Letters from the Masters of the Wisdom Second Series, No. 62 (Chicago, IL: Theosophical Press, 1926), 62.
  4. Vicente Hao Chin, Jr., The Mahatma Letters to A.P. Sinnett in chronological sequence No. 5 (Quezon City: Theosophical Publishing House, 1993), 16.
  5. Vicente Hao Chin, Jr., The Mahatma Letters to A.P. Sinnett in chronological sequence No. 11 (Quezon City: Theosophical Publishing House, 1993), 30.
  6. Joy Mills, Reflections on an Ageless Wisdom, (Wheaton, IL: Theosophical Publishing House, 2010), 57-58.

Further reading