Ross Scott

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Ross Scott was an young Irishman when he met the Founders aboard the ship "Speke Hall" in February 1879, as they were sailing to Bombay in their moving to India. He was a member of the British Civil Servant on his way to his post in North India.[1] Col. Olcott called him "a noble fellow and an Irishman of the better sort".[2] A. P. Sinnett, however, considered him coarse fibered. He joined the Theosophical Society in February 1880 in Bombay, along with A. O. Hume's only daughter, Minnie Hume, whom he would marry on December 28, 1881.

Mr. Scott received some letters from the Masters, saw one of them, and was put on probation, although eventually failed. Later, he became a magistrate in the Central Provinces.[3] He died in 1908.

Master M. appears

In August 5, 1881, Master K.H. wrote to Mr. Sinnett: "I have a favour to ask of you: try and make friends with Ross Scott. I need him".[4] On August 21, he was chosen as secretary of the newly formed Simla Eclectic Theosophical Society.

On January 5, 1882, Mahatma M. "projected himself" to Ross Scott and others .[5] This was confirmed by Master K.H., who, in October 1882, told Mr. Sinnett that Ross Scott had received a visit from Master M. "in astral shape".[6]

The party gathered there was composed of Mr. Scott and his wife, the Founders, Damodar K. Mavalankar, M. Murad Ali Beg, and Bhavani Shankar. They wrote the following report:

We were sitting together in the moonlight about 9 o'clock upon the balcony which projects from the front of the bungalow. Mr. Scott was sitting facing the house, so as to look through the intervening verandah and the library, and into the room at the further side. This latter apartment was brilliantly lighted.
The library was in partial darkness, thus rendering objects in the farther room more distinct. Mr. Scott suddenly saw the figure of a man step into the space, opposite the door of the library; he was clad in the white dress of a Rajput, and wore a white turban. Mr. Scott at once recognized him from his resemblance to a portrait [of Morya] in Col. Olcott's possession. Our attention was then drawn to him, and we all saw him most distinctly. He walked towards a table, and afterwards turning his face towards us, walked back out of our sight. When we reached the room he was gone. Upon the table, at the spot where he had been standing, lay a letter addressed to one of our number. The handwriting was identical with that of sundry notes and letters previously received from him.[7]

Probation

Ross Scott married Minnie Hume on December 28, 1881. This marriage seems to have been a request from the Masters as part of his probation, to see if he remained true to his convictions despite the influence of his wife. This is explained in a letter from Mme. Blavatsky to A. P. Sinnett:

His very marriage was to serve a lesson hereafter for both of us, to show how human nature was variable. When I bothered them repeatedly to make R. Scott happy to cure him of his leg, I was told to provide him with a wife — "Miss Hume would do first rate for him" — and then said K. H. — "if he proves faithful and true and the influence of his wife leaves him unshaken in his beliefs and true to his old friends then we will attend to his leg." Six months Probation was allowed to Scott. Only six months — though he knew it not — and now behold the fruit! Did not M. write to him before his marriage that he would not correspond with him until after his marriage for reasons he could not tell him and which he did not divulge, even to me until their departure from here Jan. 12th.[8]

Mrs. Scott eventually became jealous of the influence Mme. Blavatsky and the Masters had on her husband and Ross Scott finally turned against them. In HPB's words:

She owes her husband to the Brothers and me. What more natural than that she should traduce both the "Brothers" and myself! She is afraid in her little petty jealousy lest they or I should retain our hold upon her husband — hence the policy -- des finesses comme de fil blanc![9]

Eventually, Master M. told Mme. Blavatsky "that Scott had been tested and found shaky".[10]

On October, 1882, Master K.H. wrote a letter to Mr. Sinnett about Mme. Blavatsky's insistence that they should consider C. C. Massey and Ross Scott for chelaship:

She said the same of Ross Scott. “Such two staunch, devoted friends — I never had!” she assured her “Boss” — who only laughed in his beard, and bid me arrange the “theosophical” marriage. Well; one was tested and tried for three years, the other for three months, with what results I hardly need remind you. Not only NO temptations were ever put in the way of either, but the latter was furnished with a wife amply sufficient for his happiness, and connections that will prove beneficent to him some day. C.C.M. had but objective, undoubted phenomena to stand upon; R. Scott had, moreover, a visit in astral shape from M. In the case of one — the revenge of three unprincipled men; in the case of the other — the jealousy of a petty-minded fool made short work of the boasted friendship, and showed the “O.L.” what it was worth.[11]

Notes

  1. George E. Linton and Virginia Hanson, eds., Readers Guide to The Mahatma Letters to A. P. Sinnett (Adyar, Chennai, India: Theosophical Publishing House, 1972), 244.
  2. Henry Steel Olcott, Old Diary Leaves Second Series (Adyar, Madras: The Theosophical Publishing House, 1974), 16.
  3. George E. Linton and Virginia Hanson, eds., Readers Guide to The Mahatma Letters to A. P. Sinnett (Adyar, Chennai, India: Theosophical Publishing House, 1972), 244.
  4. Vicente Hao Chin, Jr., The Mahatma Letters to A.P. Sinnett in chronological sequence No. 20 (Quezon City: Theosophical Publishing House, 1993), 76.
  5. A. Trevor Barker, The Letters of H. P. Blavatsky to A. P. Sinnett Letter No. CLVI, (Pasadena, CA: Theosophical University Press, 1973), 310.
  6. Vicente Hao Chin, Jr., The Mahatma Letters to A.P. Sinnett in chronological sequence No. 92 (Quezon City: Theosophical Publishing House, 1993), 299.
  7. First Report of the Committee of the Society for Psychical Research, Appendix XIV at http://www.blavatskyarchives.com/app14.htm Published by The Blavatsky Archives Online
  8. A. Trevor Barker, The Letters of H. P. Blavatsky to A. P. Sinnett Letter No. 10c (Pasadena, CA: Theosophical University Press, 1973), 15.
  9. A. Trevor Barker, The Letters of H. P. Blavatsky to A. P. Sinnett Letter No. 10c (Pasadena, CA: Theosophical University Press, 1973), 15.
  10. A. Trevor Barker, The Letters of H. P. Blavatsky to A. P. Sinnett Letter No. 10c (Pasadena, CA: Theosophical University Press, 1973), 16.
  11. Vicente Hao Chin, Jr., The Mahatma Letters to A.P. Sinnett in chronological sequence No. 92 (Quezon City: Theosophical Publishing House, 1993), 298-299.