Mahatma Letter to H. S. Olcott - LMW 2 No. 3

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Quick Facts
People involved
Written by: Tuitit Bey
Received by: Henry Steel Olcott
Sent via: unknown 
Dates
Written on: June-August 1875
Received on: June-August 1875
Other dates: unknown
Places
Sent from: unknown
Received at: New York
Via: unknown

This is Letter No. 3 in Letters from the Masters of the Wisdom, Second Series, in which Master Tuitit Bey reassures Henry Steel Olcott that the Mahatmas are watching over him.

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Page 1 transcription, image, and notes

FROM the BROTHERHOOD OF LUXOR, Section the Vth

to Henry S. Olcott.

Brother Neophyte, we greet thee.

He who seeks us finds us. TRY.

Rest thy mind — banish all foul doubt. We keep watch over our faithful soldiers. Sister Helen is a valiant, trustworthy servant. Open thy Spirit to conviction, have faith and she will lead thee to the Golden Gate of truth. She neither fears sword nor fire but her soul is sensitive to dishonour and she hath reason to mistrust the future. Our good brother “John” hath verily acted rashly, but he meant well. Son of the World, if thou dost hear them both. TRY.

It is our wish to effect an opprobrious punishment on the man Child and through thy means, brother. TRY.

David is honest and his heart is pure and innocent as the mind of a babe, but he is not ready physically. Thou hast many good mediums around thee, don’t give up thy club. TRY.

LMW2-3a_thm.jpg

NOTES:

  • brother "John" refers to John King.
  • The exhortation TRY appears in many letters from the Mahatmas. Each repetition of the word in this letter is following by this symbol: Try symbol in LMW2-3 b.jpg
  • on the man Child refers to Dr. Henry T. Child, who exposed mediums Mr. and Mrs. Holmes. Child was in turn exposed by Colonel Olcott.[1]
  • David - identity is unknown.
  • don’t give up thy club refers to "the Miracle Club, whose organization was announced in the Spiritual Scientist of May 27, 1875."[2]

Page 2

Brother “John” hath brought three of our Masters to look at thee after the séance. Thy noble exertions on behalf of our cause now give us the right of letting thee know who they were:

Serapis Bey (Ellora Section)
Polydorus Isurenus (Section of Solomon)
Robert More (Section of Zoroaster)

Sister Helen will explain thee the meaning of the Star and colors.

Activity and Silence as to the present. By Order of the Grand

TUITIT BEY

Observatory of Luxor
Tuesday Morning
Day of Mars-

LMW2-3b_thm.jpg

NOTES:

  • Ellora section refers to a place of pilgrimage[3]

Context and background

Mr. Jinarajadasa provided this background information:

As is well known, H. P. Blavatsky went to America at the direct command of the Masters, and, throughout all her time there, she was in constant communication with several of Them. At first, the detailed direction of her work was under the supervision of the Egyptian Brothers, of whom the chief is the Adept who called Himself Serapis Bey. Associated with Him were others, among whom Tuitit Bey is referred to several times by H.P.B.

Colonel Olcott has not mentioned anywhere the date when he received this letter from the Brotherhood of Luxor. It is evidently among the earliest letters received by him, if not the first.[4]

Physical description of letter

The original of this letter is preserved at the Theosophical Society, Adyar, Chennai, India. Mr. Jinarajadasa described the letter in this way:

The envelope is addressed as follows:

O.G.L. pour Messager Special
Colonel H. S. Olcott,
au No. 7, Beekman Street, New York,
États Unis d’Amérique.
aux bons soins de Madame H. Blavatsky
F.G.S. R +

The envelope is of black glazed paper and the inscription on it is in gold ink, which is now somewhat faded. It is closed with a red seal, but the seal is not decipherable. The letter is written in gold ink on thick green paper. The letter is now in four pieces.[5]

Publication history

Commentary about this letter

Mr. Jinarajadasa provided this commentary:

The letters of the Master Serapis several times mention John King. Under this name several entities seem to have played their part in the early days of Spiritualism. Spirits calling themselves “John King” still materialise, with the orthodox features, but they are fraudulent spirits, I think, utterly lacking in the distinction which was a characteristic of the genuine and original John King, Colonel Olcott mentions that John King was first heard of in 1850. According to Colonel Olcott, there were three John Kings: 1. “An elemental pure and simple, employed by H.P.B. and a certain other expert in the doing of wonders”; 2. “the earth-haunting soul of Sir Henry Morgan, the famous buccaneer”; 3. “messenger and servant—never the equal—of living Adepts”. It is this third John King who is referred to in the letters of the Master. See Old Diary Leaves, vol. I, chap. I.

The Brotherhood of Luxor which was directing H. P. B. and H. S. O. must be distinguished from “The Hermetic Brotherhood of Luxor” This was a spurious organisation started somewhere about 1883. The papers about it in the Adyar records show that its principal agent in U. S. A. was a certain “M. Theon, Grand Master pro tem. of the Exterior Circle”. This person’s real name was Peter Davidson, who, in the secret instructions issued, signs himself “Provincial Grand Master of the Northern Section”. The originator of this “H. B. of L.” seems to have been a Hindu, Hurrychund Chintamon, at least one of the records says so. Whether this was the Hurrychund Chintamon of Bombay, who was in correspondence with the Founders in 1875, and who quarrelled with them and with the Arya Samaj over funds sent by the T.S. to the Arya Samaj, I have no means of ascertaining. He seems to have had as fellow-workers Davidson and a certain D’Alton, alias T. H. Burgoyne. Burgoyne seems to have passed under several aliases and was sentenced in 1883 to prison for swindling under the name of Thomas Henry Dalton. Davidson, who was at the time in England, seems to have returned to America. It is not easy to under stand how Thos. M. Johnson, the well-known writer and publisher of The Platonist, of Osceola, Mo., U.S.A., was brought into this quack organization. Writing in 1886 Mr. Johnson, in a letter now among the records concerning “H. B. of L.,” adds to his signature an inscription showing him to be the President of the American Central Committee of the “H. B. of L.” In 1875 when H.P.B. tried to found the Theosophical Movement, she had a definite seal, symbolical of the Brotherhood of Luxor, printed on her note-paper. This seal of hers was imitated with modifications by Davidson for use of the “H. B of L.” From some of the secret instructions, now among the records, of this organization, which Colonel Olcott rightly calls a “gudgeontrap,” it is evident that its “occult”’ teaching was distinctly allied to the questionable practices of the darker Tantric cult of India.

It is characteristic of the letters written to Colonel Olcott by the Master Serapis that often. He gives the exhortation “Try”.

All the letters of the Master Serapis, published in this Part I of this book, are at Adyar. Except one letter, they were all received by Colonel Olcott between the months of June and August, 1875.[6]

Additional resources

Notes

  1. C. Jinarajadasa, editor, Letters from the Masters of the Wisdom Second Series (Adyar, Madras, India: Theosophical Publishing House, 1925), 11-12. In a footnote, Jinarajadasa added: "This person came before the American public in January, 1875, as an exposer of two American mediums, Mr. And Mrs. Holmes. Instructions were received by both H.P.B. and H.S.O. that Child himself was to be exposed, as he was their 'ex-partner and show-manager' (O.D.L., VOL. I, p. 70). Colonel Olcott exposed Child thoroughly in his People from Another World. Says H.P.B. in her Scrap-Book in one place: 'Dr. Child was a confederate. He took money for Holmes’ séances. He is a rascal.' In another place in the Scrap-Book, she writes: 'Ordered to expose Dr. Child. I did so. Dr. is a hypocrite, a liar and a fraud.'"
  2. C. Jinarajadasa, 12. Jinarajadasa's footnote added: "H.P.B. writes of this first attempt to form a Society: 'An attempt in consequence of orders received from T.B. . through P. . personating G.K. Ordered to begin telling the public the truth about the phenomena and their mediums. And now my martyrdom will begin! I will have all the Spiritualists against me in addition to the Christians and Skeptics! Thy will. O. M. . !, be done ! H.P.B.'"
  3. J. Jinarajadasa, 12-13. In a footnote Jinarajadasa wrote: "Ellora is a series of rock-hewn caves, ten miles north of Daula-tabad, and 225 miles north-west of Bombay. Ellora is still a 'tîrtha' or place of pilgrimage, though it has now no reputation as an occult center. 'In the rainy season a torrent flows at its foot and a great cascade pours over in front, so that the pilgrims can pass along a ledge behind it and bathe in the falling spray, believing that it is Ganga’s holy stream falling over the great God’s brow. For over a mile in length this scrap of rock is carved into monasteries and temples belonging to different sects, among the earliest being the Buddhist Visvakarma stupahouse already described.' A Handbook of Indian Art, by E. B. Havell, p. 79."
  4. C. Jinarajadasa, 8.
  5. C. Jinarajadasa, 8.
  6. C. Jinarajadasa, 9-10.