Mahatma Letter to H. S. Olcott - LMW 2 No. 8

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Written by: Serapis Bey
Received by: Henry Steel Olcott
Sent via: unknown 
Written on: June-August 1875
Received on: June-August 1875
Other dates: unknown
Sent from: unknown
Received at: New York
Via: unknown

This is Letter No. 8 in Letters from the Masters of the Wisdom, Second Series. In it Mahatma Serapis Bey offers encouragement to Henry Steel Olcott to continue working with Elbridge Gerry Brown.[1] Letters 4-8 of this series are closely related.

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Page 1 transcription, image, and notes

MY Brother must try not to either lose or lessen the youth's confidence in him. He must therefore be kind, sympathetic and soothing with his erring soul; my Brother must try to open his erring soul to the monstrosity of his behaviour towards our Sister, to his apparent if not real ingratitude towards her who befriended him in such an unselfish manner. My Brother Henry must not be lenient, but on the contrary, purporting to be repeating the expressions of the Brotherhood of Luxor, let him know in the most undisguised way what opinion is entertained of him by those who read his most secret thoughts, and who, if they withheld the greater portion of what they know of him . . . did this but on account of . . . Brother Henry must add that sorry as he is for him, he cannot do anything for him without the permission of the Lodge, except to help his paper with his contributions; (that) he has no money, and if he had, could do naught without the orders of his chiefs; if the youth wants his paper to be saved from failure he has to turn for help to her whom he wronged so cruelly.

He must repent and suffer . . . . If Brother Henry succeeds in arousing repentance in his callous Atma, he will have saved a soul; if he fails, all hopes for the youth's future will be blighted and the wisdom of the Lodge will provide otherwise.

God's blessing upon thee, Brother mine.




Context and background

Mr. Jinarajadasa provided this background information:

...the Egyptian Brotherhood originally intended to make the nucleus of the Movement not two but three. The third person was a young American, Elbridge Gerry Brown, the editor of the Spiritual Scientist, Boston. Gerry Brown stood out from other spiritualists by a desire to understand the occult laws behind spiritualistic phenomena. It was the intention of the Egyptian Brotherhood that the Theosophical Movement should, as its first work, initiate a broadening and deepening of Spiritualism. While proof as to survival after death was most valuable, it was only one fact in a larger philosophy which the Adept Brothers intended to give to mankind. Gerry Brown evidently in the beginning responded to these ideals, for he placed his paper at the service of the Brotherhood. BothH.P.B. and H.S.O. not only contributed articles, but also much money to the support of the Scientist. This part of the plan, however, broke down....

Gerry Brown went bankrupt in September 1878, owing money to both H.P.B. and Colonel Olcott....[2]

Physical description of letter

The original of this letter is preserved at the Theosophical Society, Adyar, Chennai, India.

Publication history

Commentary about this letter

Mr. Jinarajadasa wrote little commentary about this very short letter:

So Gerry Brown lost the great opportunity offered him by the Masters of becoming one of a noble triad whom future Theosophists would ever hold in reverent gratitude.[3]

Additional resources


  1. C. Jinarajadasa, Letters from the Masters of the Wisdom, Second Series (Adyar, Madras,India: Theosophical Publishing House, 1925), 14-15, 19-20.
  2. C. Jinarajadasa, 14-15.
  3. C. Jinarajadasa, 15.