Difference between revisions of "Mahatma Letter to H. S. Olcott - LMW 1 No. 54"

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Quick Facts
People involved
Written by: Narayan
Received by: Henry Steel Olcott
Sent via: unknown
Written on: unknown
Received on: August 1877
Other dates: none
Sent from: unknown
Received at: New York
Via: unknown

This is Letter No. 54 in Letters from the Masters of the Wisdom, First Series, in which Master Narayan reassures Henry Steel Olcott that the Mahatmas are watching over him.[1]

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Page 1 transcription, image, and notes

She is a sweet, truthful, sincere nature. Would to heavenly powers there were a few more like her in London. Teach her and take care of her.

[Signature in unknown script]*symbol*
Tell her I was several times with her at the Hdqrs.



Context and background

Mr. Jinarajadasa provided this background information:

There is a photographic reproduction of this Letter in The Theosophist, December 1933, p. 310. It appears at the bottom of the last page of a letter written by Miss Emily Kislingbury to Colonel Olcott. She was the secretary of the British National Association of Spiritualists of London. She went to the U.S.A. on a holiday in August 1877. She had already joined the Society in February of that year. She wrote to Colonel Olcott from Niagara Falls to announce her arrival in New York, and on opening her letter he found this message. The Master who wrote it is the same as the writer of Letter 24 in the second series of these letters. At the bottom of Letter 24, H.P.B. has written in blue pencil, ‘the old gentleman your Narayan’, as the signature in it is in an unknown script. The handwriting of the letter which is at the end of Miss Kislingbury’s note is the same, though the signature, again in an unknown script, is different. This Adept is he who helped H.P.B. constantly in he writing of Isis Unveiled, and was often in her body writing and meeting people. He is known in India by the name which he bore thousands of years ago, the Rishi Agastya, and is one of the few adepts who are in old bodies. In 1885, he was living not far from Madras, and C.W. Leadbeater has narrated how T. Subba Row and he went by train to visit the venerable Master. The Master has all India under his charge as the occult administrator of her destinies, and has been therefore called by some, the Regent of India. I have been unable to find where the original letter is1, though a speech of Miss Kislingbury’s after her return to London is pasted in H.P.B.’s scrap-book, vol. IV. It describes phenomena by H.P.B., and states about her, ‘my acquaintance—my friendship — a friendship to last I hope for life and for ever, with the being called Madame Blavatsky’. ‘Headquarters’ evidently refers to the offices of the Spiritualist Association. Miss Emily Kislingbury was faithful to the end, and was of the group round H.P.B. when she passed away. A faded photograph of her is reproduced in The Golden Book of the Theosophical Society, p.25.[2]

Physical description of letter

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

Publication history

There is a photographic reproduction of this Letter in The Theosophist, December 1933, p. 310.

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.[3]

Additional resources


  1. C. Jinarajadasa, Letters from the Masters of the Wisdom, First Series (Adyar, Chennai, India: Theosophical Publishing House, 2011), 118, 168-170.
  2. C. Jinarajadasa, 168-170.
  3. C. Jinarajadasa, 9-10.