Writings of H P Blavatsky


Cardiff Theosophical Society in Wales

Theosophy House

206 Newport Road, Cardiff, Wales, UK. CF24 -1DL




Helena Petrovna Blavatsky  (1831 – 1891)

The Founder of Modern Theosophy


A Year Of Theosophy


H P Blavatsky


Return to Homepage



Return to

Blavatsky Writings Index




The dial of Time marks off another of the world's Hours. . . .

And, as the Old Year passes into Eternity, like a rain-drop falling

into the ocean, its vacant place on the calendar is occupied by a

successor which – if one may credit the ancient prophetic warnings

of Mother Shipton and other seers – is to bring woe and disaster to

some portions of the world. Let it go, with its joys and triumphs,

its badness and bitterness, if it but leave behind for our

instruction the memory of our experience and the lesson of our

mistakes. Wise is he who lets "the dead Past bury its dead," and

turns with courage to meet the fresher duties of the New Year; only

the weak and foolish bemoan the irrevocable. It will be well to take

a brief retrospect of those incidents of the year 1880 (A.D.) which

possess an interest for members of the Theosophical Society. The

more so since, in consequence of the absence from Bombay of the

President and Corresponding Secretary, the anniversary day of the

Society was not publicly celebrated.


It will not be necessary to enter minutely into those details of

administration which, however important in themselves as links, weak

or strong, in the general chain of progress, and however they may

have taxed the patience, nerve, or other resources of the chief

officers. do not at all interest the public. It is not so much

explanation as results that are demanded, and these, in our case,

abound. Even our worst enemy would be forced to admit, were he to

look closely into our transactions, that the Society is immeasurably

stronger morally, numerically, and as regards a capacity for future

usefulness, than it was a year ago. Its name has become most widely

known; its fellowship has been enriched by the accession of some

very distinguished men; it has planted new branch societies in

India, Ceylon and elsewhere; applications are now pending for the

organization of still other branches, in New South Wales, Sydney,

California. India, Australia; its magazine has successfully entered

the second volume; its local issues with the government of India

have been finally and creditably settled; a mischievous attempt by a

handful of malcontents at Bombay to disrupt it has miserably

failed.1 It has made official alliances with the Sanskrit Samaj of

Benares, that is to say, with the most distinguished body of

orthodox Sanskrit pandits in the world, with the other Sabha of

which Pandit Rama Misra Shastri is Manager, and with the Hindu

Sabha, of Cochin State; while, at the same time, strengthening its

fraternal relations with the Arya Samajas of the Punjab and

North-Western Provinces. Besides all this, we can point with joy and

pride to the results of the late mission to Ceylon, where, within

the space of fifty-seven days, seven branch societies of Buddhist

laymen, one Ecclesiastical Council of Buddhist priests, and one

scientific society were organized, and some hundreds of new fellows

were added to our list.


All this work could not be accomplished without great labour,

mental anxiety and physical discomfort. If to this be added the

burden of a correspondence with many different countries, and the

time required for making two journeys to Northern India and one to

Ceylon, our friends at a distance will see that whatever other blame

may properly attach to the Founders, who have never claimed

infallibility of any sort, that of laziness is assuredly not to be

cast in their teeth. Nor, when they learn that the work done since

leaving America, the travelling expenses and the fitting and

maintenance of the Headquarters establishment has cost some twenty

thousand rupees, while the cash receipts of the Treasurer (exclusive

of those from Ceylon, Rs. 2,440, which sum is set aside as a special

fund to be used in the interest of Buddhism) have been only one

thousand two hundred and forty rupees, all told, including one

donation of two hundred rupees from the universally respected

Maharanee Surnomoyee, and another of twenty rupees from a

well-wisher in Bengal, will those who direct the Society's affairs

be regarded by them as making money out of their offices. And these

figures, which may most readily be verified, are our only answer to

the calumnies which have been maliciously circulated by some who did

not, and others who did, know the truth.


The trip to Ceylon occupied seventy-seven days in all, the

second one to Northern India one hundred and twenty-five days. Thus

the Founders have been absent from Bombay on duty twenty-nine weeks

out of the fifty-two; their travels extending through twenty-five

degrees of latitude, from Lahore at the extreme north of India, to

Matara, the southernmost point of ancient Lanka. Each of the Indian

Presidencies has contributed a quota of new members; and at the

former capital of the late lion-hearted Runjeet Singh, a branch was

recently organized by Sikhs and Punjabis, under the title of the

"Punjab Theosophical Society." During the twelvemonth, President

Olcott delivered seventy-nine lectures and addresses, a majority of

which were interpreted in the Hindi, Urdu, Guzerati and Sinhalese


    Many misconceptions prevail as to the nature and objects of the

Theosophical Society. Some – Sir Richard Temple in the number –

fancy it is a religious sect; many believe it is composed of

atheists; a third party are convinced that its sole object is the

study of occult science and the initiation of green hands into the

Sacred Mysteries. If we have had one we certainly have had a hundred

intimations from strangers that they were ready to join at once if

they could be sure that they would shortly be endowed with siddhis,

or the power to work occult phenomena. The beginning of a new year

is a suitable time to make one more attempt – we wish it could be

the last – to set these errors right. So then, let us say again: (1)

The Theosophical Society teaches no new religion, aims to destroy no

old one, promulgates no creed of its own, follows no religious

leader, and, distinctly and emphatically, is not a sect, nor ever

was one. It admits worthy people of any religion to membership, on

the condition of mutual tolerance and mutual help to discover truth.

The Founders have never consented to be taken as religious leaders,

they repudiate any such idea, and they have not taken and will not

take disciples. (2) The Society is not composed of atheists, nor is

it any more conducted in the interest of atheism than in that of

deism or polytheism. It has members of almost every religion, and is

on equally fraternal terms with each and all. (3) Not a majority,

nor even a respectable minority, numerically speaking, of its

fellows are students of occult science or ever expect to become

adepts. All who cared for the information have been told what

sacrifices are necessary in order to gain the higher knowledge, and

few are in a position to make one tenth of them. He who joins our

Society gains no siddhis by that act, nor is there any certainty

that he will even see the phenomena, let alone meet with an adept.

Some have enjoyed both these opportunities, and so the possibility

of the phenomena and the existence of "Siddhas" do not rest upon our

unverified assertions. Those who have seen things have perhaps been

allowed to do so on account of some personal merit detected by those

who showed them the siddhis, or for other reasons known to

themselves and over which we have no control.


For thousands of years these things have, whether rightly or

wrongly, been guarded as sacred mysteries, and Asiatics at least

need not be reminded that often even after months or years of the

most faithful and assiduous personal service, the disciples of a

Yogi have not been shown "miracles" or endowed with powers. What

folly, therefore, to imagine that by entering any society one might

make a short cut to adeptship! The weary traveller along a strange

road is grateful even to find a guide-post that shows him his way to

his place of destination. Our Society, if it does naught else,

performs this kindly office for the searcher after truth. And it is



Before closing, one word must be said in correction of an

unfortunate impression that has got abroad. Because our pamphlet of

Rules mentions a relationship between our Society and certain

proficients in Occult Science, or "Mahatmas " many persons fancy

that these great men are personally engaged in the practical

direction of its affairs; and that, in such a case, being primarily

responsible for the several mistakes that have occurred in the

admission of unworthy members and in other matters, they can neither

be so wise, so prudent, or so far-seeing as is claimed for them. It

is also imagined that the President and Corresponding Secretary

(especially the latter) are, if not actually Yogis and Mahatmas

themselves, at least persons of ascetic habits, who assume superior

moral excellence. Neither of these suppositions is correct, and both

are positively absurd. The administration of the Society is, unless

in exceptionally important crises, left to the recognized officials,

and they are wholly responsible for all the errors that are made.

Many may doubtless have been made, and our management may be very

faulty, but the wonder is that no more have occurred, if the

multiplicity of duties necessarily imposed upon the two chief

officers and the world-wide range of activity be taken into account.

Colonel Olcott and Madame Blavatsky do not pretend to ascetism, nor

would it be possible for them to practise it while in the thick of

the struggle to win a permanent foothold for the Society in the face

of every possible obstacle that a selfish, sensuality-loving world

puts in the way. What either of them has heretofore been, or either

or both may in the future become, is quite a different affair. At

present they only claim to be trying honestly and earnestly, so far

as their natural infirmities of character permit, to enforce by

example and precept the ideas which are embodied in the platform and

Rules of the Theosophical Society. Once or twice ill-wishers have

publicly taunted us with not having given practical proofs of our

alleged affection for India. Our final vindication must be left to

posterity, which always renders that justice that the present too

often denies. But even now – if we may judge by the tone of our

correspondence, as well as by the enthusiasm which has everywhere

greeted us in the course of our journeyings – a palpably good effect

has been produced by our appeals to the educated Indian public. The

moral regeneration of India and the revival of her ancient spiritual

glories must exclusively be the work of her own sons. All we can do

is to apply the match to the train, to fan the smouldering embers

into a genial warmth. And this we are trying to do. One step in the

right direction, it will doubtless be conceded, is the alliance

effected with the Benares pandits and attested in the subjoined



      [Here are printed the Articles of the Union formed by the T.

  S. and the Sanskrit Sabha of Benares, agreeing to cooperation and

  brotherly union between the two societies, in the interests of the

  promotion of Sanskrit Literature and Vedic Philosophy and Science;

  the agreement being signed by the officers and members of the

  Benares Samaj, and by Col. Olcott as President of the Theosophical

  Society. H.P.B.'s concluding comment follows:


These custodians of Sanskrit learning have promised to put in

writing the precious treasures of Aryan philosophy, and to cooperate

with us to give the facts a worldwide circulation.


The London Spiritualist remarked, the other day, that we were

doing much for Spiritualism in India. It might rather be said we are

doing much to make known the importance of mesmeric science, for

wherever we have been we have spared no pains to show the close and

intimate relationship that exists between our modern discoveries in

mesmerism, psychometry, and odic force, and the ancient Indian

science of Yoga Vidya. We look forward with confidence to a day when

the thorough demonstration of this connection will give to both Asia

and Europe the basis for a perfect, because experimentally

demonstrable, science of Psychology.


Theosophist, January, 1881

H. P. Blavatsky



1 Secret letters by former members denouncing its Founders, sent to

Paris and other Theosophists and pretending that the Bombay Society

was virtually extinct (its best members having resigned), were sent

back to us with new protestations of friendship and loyalty and

expressions of scorn for the conspirators.-(Ed. Theos.)

back to text









Return to Homepage



Return to

Blavatsky Writings Index






Cardiff Theosophical Society in Wales

Theosophy House

206 Newport Road, Cardiff, Wales, UK. CF24 -1DL


Find out more about

Theosophy with these links





The Cardiff Theosophical Society Website




The National Wales Theosophy Website


Cardiff Blavatsky Archive

Life & Work of H P Blavatsky

A Theosophy Study Resource


Dave’s Streetwise 

Theosophy Boards

The Theosophy Website that

Welcomes Absolute Beginners

If you run a Theosophy Group, please feel free

to use any of the material on this site


The Most Basic Theosophy

 Website in the Universe

A quick overview of Theosophy 

and the Theosophical Society

If you run a Theosophy Group you 

can use this as an introductory handout.


Theosophy Cardiff’s Instant Guide

to Theosophy


Cardiff Theosophy Start-Up

A Free Intro to Theosophy


Cardiff Theosophical Archive


Blavatsky Blogger

Independent Theosophy Blog


Quick Blasts of Theosophy

One liners and quick explanations

About aspects of Theosophy


Great Theosophists

The Big Names of Theosophy

H P Blavatsky is usually the only

Theosophist that most people have ever

heard of. Let’s put that right





The Blavatsky Blogger’s

Instant Guide To

Death & The Afterlife


Blavatsky Calling

The Voice of the Silence Website


The Blavatsky Free State

An Independent Theosophical Republic

Links to Free Online Theosophy 

Study Resources; Courses, Writings, 

Commentaries, Forums, Blogs


Selection of Writings by

C Jinarajadasa




Visit the Feelgood Lodge

The main criteria for the inclusion of

links on this site is that they have some

relationship (however tenuous) to Theosophy

and are lightweight, amusing or entertaining.

Topics include Quantum Theory and Socks,

Dick Dastardly and Legendary Blues Singers.


Theosophy and Reincarnation

A selection of articles on Reincarnation

by Theosophical writers

Provided in response to the large 

number of enquiries we receive at 

Cardiff Theosophical Society on this subject


Nothing answers questions

like Theosophy can!

The Key to Theosophy


Applied Theosophy

Henry Steel Olcott


Blavatsky Calling

and I Don’t Wanna Shout

The Voice of the Silence Website


The South of Heaven Guide

To Theosophy and Devachan


The South of Heaven Guide

To Theosophy and Dreams


The South of Heaven Guide

To Theosophy and Angels


Theosophy and Help From

The Universe


Wales! Wales! Theosophy Wales

The All Wales Guide to

Getting Started in Theosophy

This is for everyone, you don’t have to live

in Wales to make good use of this Website


Theosophy Avalon

The Theosophy Wales

King Arthur Pages







No Aardvarks were harmed in the

preparation of this Website




Heavy Metal Overview




Rock ‘n Roll Chronology


The Tooting Broadway

Underground Theosophy Website

The Spiritual Home of Urban Theosophy


The Mornington Crescent

Underground Theosophy Website

The Earth Base for Evolutionary Theosophy


H P Blavatsky’s Heavy Duty

Theosophical Glossary

Published 1892



Complete Theosophical Glossary in Plain Text Format




The Ocean of Theosophy

William Quan Judge


Preface    Theosophy and the Masters    General Principles


The Earth Chain    Body and Astral Body    Kama – Desire


Manas    Of Reincarnation    Reincarnation Continued


Karma    Kama Loka    Devachan    Cycles


Septenary Constitution Of Man


Arguments Supporting Reincarnation


Differentiation Of Species Missing Links


Psychic Laws, Forces, and Phenomena


Psychic Phenomena and Spiritualism


Instant Guide to Theosophy

Quick Explanations with Links to More Detailed Info



What is Theosophy ?  Theosophy Defined (More Detail)


Three Fundamental Propositions  Key Concepts of Theosophy


Cosmogenesis  Anthropogenesis  Root Races


Ascended Masters  After Death States


The Seven Principles of Man  Karma


Reincarnation   Helena Petrovna Blavatsky


Colonel Henry Steel Olcott  William Quan Judge


The Start of the Theosophical Society


History of the Theosophical Society


Theosophical Society Presidents


History of the Theosophical Society in Wales


The Three Objectives of the Theosophical Society


Explanation of the Theosophical Society Emblem


The Theosophical Order of Service (TOS)


Ocean of Theosophy

William Quan Judge


Glossaries of Theosophical Terms


Worldwide Theosophical Links




Index of Searchable

Full Text Versions of


Theosophical Works



H P Blavatsky’s Secret Doctrine


Isis Unveiled by H P Blavatsky


H P Blavatsky’s Esoteric Glossary


Mahatma Letters to A P Sinnett 1 - 25


A Modern Revival of Ancient Wisdom

Alvin Boyd Kuhn


Studies in Occultism

(Selection of Articles by H P Blavatsky)


The Conquest of Illusion

J J van der Leeuw


The Secret Doctrine – Volume 3

A compilation of H P Blavatsky’s

writings published after her death


Esoteric Christianity or the Lesser Mysteries

Annie Besant


The Ancient Wisdom

Annie Besant



Annie Besant


The Early Teachings of The Masters


Edited by

C. Jinarajadasa


Study in Consciousness

Annie Besant



A Textbook of Theosophy

C W Leadbeater


A Modern Panarion

A Collection of Fugitive Fragments

From the Pen of

H P Blavatsky


The Perfect Way or,

The Finding of Christ

Anna Bonus Kingsford

& Edward Maitland



The Perfect Way or,

The Finding of Christ

Anna Bonus Kingsford

& Edward Maitland



Pistis Sophia

A Gnostic Gospel

Foreword by G R S Mead


The Devachanic Plane.

Its Characteristics

and Inhabitants

C. W. Leadbeater



Annie Besant



Bhagavad Gita

Translated from the Sanskrit


William Quan Judge


Psychic Glossary


Sanskrit Dictionary


Fundamentals of the Esoteric Philosophy

G de Purucker


In The Outer Court

Annie Besant


Dreams and


Anna Kingsford


My Path to Atheism

Annie Besant


From the Caves and

Jungles of Hindostan

H P Blavatsky


The Hidden Side

Of Things

C W Leadbeater


Glimpses of

Masonic History

C W Leadbeater


Five Years Of


Various Theosophical


Mystical, Philosophical, Theosophical, Historical

and Scientific Essays Selected from "The Theosophist"

Edited by George Robert Stow Mead


Spiritualism and Theosophy

C W Leadbeater


Commentary on

The Voice of the Silence

Annie Besant and

C W Leadbeater

From Talks on the Path of Occultism - Vol. II


Is This Theosophy?

Ernest Egerton Wood


In The Twilight

Annie Besant

In the Twilight” Series of Articles

The In the Twilight” series appeared during

1898 in The Theosophical Review and

from 1909-1913 in The Theosophist.


Incidents in the Life

of Madame Blavatsky

compiled from information supplied by

her relatives and friends and edited by A P Sinnett


The Friendly Philosopher

Robert Crosbie

Letters and Talks on Theosophy and the Theosophical Life



Obras Teosoficas En Espanol


La Sabiduria Antigua

Annie Besant


Glosario Teosofico


H P Blavatsky



Theosophische Schriften Auf Deutsch


Die Geheimlehre


H P Blavatsky




Elementary Theosophy

An Outstanding Introduction to Theosophy

By a student of Katherine Tingley


Elementary Theosophy Who is the Man?  Body and Soul   


Body, Soul and Spirit  Reincarnation  Karma


The Seven in Man and Nature


The Meaning of Death



Try these if you are looking for a local

Theosophy Group or Centre



UK Listing of Theosophical Groups


Worldwide Directory of 

Theosophical Links


International Directory of  

Theosophical Societies







Cardiff Theosophical Society in Wales

Theosophy House

206 Newport Road, Cardiff, Wales, UK. CF24 -1DL






President of Nothing Ballast Open Election? Adyar Adyar’s Slightly International Convention

Will there be an Adyar Free Future? An Extra Box on the Ballot Paper A Society Without Members

Is the 2014 Adyar Presidential Election Invalid? Radha Burnier Employment Services

Don’t Just Do Nothing Stand There Adyar, the Sole Purpose of Adyar Western President

Save Radha’s House Ignore the Voters What an Insult to Members International Election Protocol

The Secrecy Banging the Drum for Theosophy Burnier Town Hall The Great Election Rip-Off

Keeping the International Headquarters at Adyar ABOLISHThe International President Bold Initiative

What is Behind the Attitude of the Theosophical Elite? Towards a New Model for Theosophy

Choose a Stooge SHUT UP & VOTE Members No Longer Members A Manifesto Anybody There?

Now Here’s Something Worth Keeping Quiet About Is There Hidden Bad News? Something Wrong?

Control Adyar or You Control Nothing Elected Representation Not Representing Publicly Denounced

Make Way for the Messiahs Does Silence Mean Game Over Accountable Leadership Urgently Required

Can’t Change Won’t Change Beggars at the Door From The Top Down Who Owns Adyar? New Committee?

The Royal Court of Radha Burnier General Council Meeting 2013 Minutes Adyar Theosophical Society International Rules

Disgraceful Treatment of an Adyar Employee The Preethi Muthiah Letters Concerns Raised General Council 2012 Meeting Minutes

Adyar Internal Problems Is Adyar Still The Headquarters? Creep On! General Council Good Campaign Pitch, Mr Singhal

Adyar Prepares for the Break-Up Profile of Adyar Adyar Family Appointment Another Family Power Appointment

Triumph of the Weak Adyar Job News No Stand For Democracy Bent election? A Society Without Leadership

Who will Believe It? Supporting Adyar? Long Tradition of Bullying at Adyar Summary Dismissal Trouble at t’Mill

True Purpose of the 2014 Election What Makes this Election Invalid? Trouble Was Your Vote Counted?

Not Being at Adyar Democracy in the Adyar Theosophical Society R.I.P. 11,432 Votes No Right To Complain

President’s Inauguration Pray Silence It’s Silence as Usual Who Can Support The Leadership Now? Shut Up & Pay Up

President? Really? Adyar & the US each have Half a President The White Lotus Hi-Jack Don’t Anybody Ask Me Anything

Is this the Great Wheaton Rip-Off? Master of the Small Event The Adyar Payments Scam CVK Maithreya Deserved Better Treatment

Staff Treatment At Adyar Is Wheaton Set To Support Adyar? CVK Maithreya is Presidential Why was Campaigning Banned

Adyar Allegations Climate of Fear Police Action Threatened QUICK The Prisoner of Adyartraz Preethi’s Allegations 2014 Election

One Man, One Vote Poor Adyar Future CVK Maithreya For Vice-President The General Council Should Allow Visiting Adyar

D V Subramaniam’s Posthumous Letter of Complaint The Amnesty International Paradox Did you get an Invite?

Serious Concerns Raised 2014 Election Result? The Sundaram Nomination Sham Call for Emergency Meeting

The Inauguration That Never Was Serious Concerns Election Committee Ignores Misconduct Bent Election Result

Suspend Call for Action Raise the White Flag Staff Bullying Why Did The 2014 Election Go Ahead? Tim Boyd

A Leadership at War Ignore the Bullying General Council Ignores Calls MONEY TO ADYAR? The Great Giveaway