Mahatma Letter to Holloway - LMW 1 No. 36

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People involved
Written by: Koot Hoomi
Received by: Laura Carter Holloway
Sent via: unknown 
Written on: unknown
Received on: 1-4 October 1884
Other dates: unknown
Sent from: unknown
Received at: Elberfeld
Via: unknown

This letter is Letter No. 35 in Letters from the Masters of the Wisdom, First Series. Mahatma Koot Hoomi encourages Laura Carter Holloway to complete her book. It is one of a series of letters numbered 30 to 41 that communicate directly or indirectly with Mrs. Holloway.[1]

It was presented as an excerpt in the 1964 and 1973 editions as Letter VII, before the First Series was resequenced in 1988 to make it Letter 36. The images of the complete letter were first published in 2012 as Letter No. 28 in Mrs. Holloway and the Mahatmas. The text in this article has been updated to match those images.

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Page 1 transcription, image, and notes

The greatest consolation in & the foremost duty of life, child, is not to give pain, & avoid causing suffering to man or beast. It requires no acute intelligence to put two & two in the present situation & see it make four. On the one hand we have one who has suffered greatly to serve ourselves and cause; one ever suspected, ever condemned, & who is now being crucified by Public Opinion on the tree of infamy. Right at her side stands one of those for whom she has so suffered; the indirect cause of it, yet one who at the first glimpse of false appearance would not hesitate to suspect her himself. Nevertheless, this man also has suffered, he merits consideration, & ought to have his doubts solved. To satisfy him and thus help the cause in its present very complicated situation, we, who are forbidden to use our powers with Europeans can act but thro' our chela or one like H.P.B. We can get at him but thro' those two channels. Where are the chelas strong enough to help us without the aid of our own powers? One is 9,000 m.[miles] away the other the adept is here. An answer thro’ the former would necessitate two months thro’ (?) the latter as many hours. But she refuses most positively to lend herself hereforth to such services. She is right. She demands it in the name of her karma & therefore not to be ordered against her will. Her self-sacrifices were so ill-requited that it would be cruelty and abuse of power to subject her to new persecutions. Yet it is imperative that certain questions should be answered. It is not her help but her aura we want; the force expended in her room, for nothing and that we utilize. So much we can do without her knowledge. She would have nothing against it tho’ she knew it for all she wants is that she should not be made a party & participator in our letters. Would Mr. S. believe she was not ever he even to be told the whole truth? Never: if not now the idea that she knew of it & yet pretended not to – would get hold of him later. There is one but one means to reconcile all – the one offered you, to let him think whatever he likes. And it is this that provokes the desperate cry “Master help me, & forgive my faults!

It is trifles that make up the sum of great actions, & it is only the right definition of things that refines the pure essence of an action, which would otherwise, and in the light of sophistry born out of human selfishness appear to us not altogether right. To help & forgive your faults! Help yes, to forgive them rest with your karma & it is immutable justice hence – can neither punish nor forgive at its will. Forgiveness exists but in our daily life relations, when as Ausonius tells us we should forgive many things in others but nothing in ourselves.

Think & ponder over this, while I am willing to do much for you, I can do nothing unless you help me to do so yourself.

The other letter will be answered later on.




Context and background

Mr. Jinarajadasa provided these notes about this series of letters numbered 30-41. They were clearly written before Letters 4 to 20, which have reference to Mrs Holloway:

Miss Mary K. Neff was well known for her record of service to various Indian schools, and especially for her work during two years at the Theosophical Headquarters, at Adyar, indexing all the letters and documents which are in the Archives of the Society. She had dedicated herself especially to the history of H.P.B.'s movements and had published Personal Memories of H.P. Blavatsky.

She found in a magazine The World published in New York, articles by Mrs Langford in the issues of May and June 1912. These contain certain instructions received by her from the Master K.H... I publish these letters, as they contain much valuable instructions, for all who are preparing to tread the path to the Masters.[2]

Physical description of letter

The original consists of four pages of pink paper in the familiar blue handwriting of Master K. H. The location of the original of this letter is in The Winterthur Library, Joseph Downs Collection of Manuscripts and Printed Ephemera, Materials on Theosophy, in Winterthur, Delaware.

Publication history

Part of this letter was published by Mrs. Holloway in an article "The Mahatmas and Their Instruments" in The Word (New York, July 1912, p. 201. This letter was added as an excerpt designated Letter VII in the 1964 edition of the First Series, and kept that designation until 1988, when the letters were resequenced. Then it became Letter 36.

In 2012, the images of the letter were printed for the first time in Mrs. Holloway and the Mahatmas.

Commentary about this letter

Additional resources


  1. C. Jinarajadasa, Letters from the Masters of the Wisdom, First Series (Adyar, Chennai, India: Theosophical Publishing House, 2011), 80, 161-162.
  2. C. Jinarajadasa, 161-162.