Alice A. Bailey, H.P. Blavatsky and Helena Roerich (Pt. II)

Alice A. Bailey, H.P. Blavatsky
and Helena Roerich

Cleavages between the followers of three traditions:
The Theosophical Society, The Arcane School, The Agni Yoga Society


Alice A. Bailey and The Theosophical Society

1. Alice Bailey and the Theosophical Society
2. (a) Refutation of Nicholas Weeks’ article “Theosophy’s Shadow” – Phillip Lindsay
2. (b) Refutation of Nicholas Weeks’ article “Theosophy’s Shadow” – M. Sufilight
3. (a) ‘Bailey and Theosophy’ by Nils Bronsted
3. (b) Two Amanuenses – Bailey and Blavatsky
3. (c) Alice Bailey’s Personal View of the Theosophical Society
4. Alice A. Bailey – Various Viewpoints (Weblinks)
5. Alice Bailey and Theosophy – Uri Gorbunov
6. Two Remarkable Russian Women: Blavatsky & Roerich – Uri Gorbunov

Alice A. Bailey and Helena Roerich

1. Helena Roerich’s Letters About Alice Bailey
2. Astrological Perspectives
3. Horoscope of Helena Roerich – Transits for her letters
4. Views and Commentary on HR’s Letters – Uri Gorbunov
5. Agni Yoga Forum Horoscope
6. Attack on DK’s Ashram? Initiates can ‘fall’
7. AAB Anti-semite Accusation
8. Laden Lha Reference
9. Letters between Students of Roerich and Bailey
10. Alice Bailey’s Teaching and Agni Yoga – Yuri Gorbunov
11. Comparative Biographies of Roerich and Bailey – Uri Gorbunov
12. On Alice Bailey and Helena Roerich – by James Davis
13. DK and Agni Yoga in Concordance – James Davis
14. Commonalities Between DK’s and M’s Teaching (Agni Yoga)

Helena Roerich’s Letters About Alice Bailey

Helena Roerich, Morya’s messenger for the Agni Yoga series of books, was no less prone to the anti AAB stance of the theosophists. As a student of theosophy she must have been privy to the politics of the day and influenced by TS attitudes to a certain degree.

There may have also been some sort of personal spiritual rivalry that she felt with AAB. Several statements in her unpublished letters discourage students from AAB. These letters have recently come to light during a three-week discussion in an online Agni Yoga forum in August/September 2002.

Translations below were made by three different translators – members of Sangha Forum in 2002. Some of the English is imperfect and a little stilted, yet it is comprehensible. (Bolding by editor)

“Alice Bailey visited today N.K. [Roerich]. She told about cooperation and that all great men have to meet in our House.”1

“Then H.I., recounted what M. told about book by Ms. Bailey [“Initiation Human and Solar”], which H.I. recently bought, because she told about Masters and that allegedly one Master was educated in University in England and the other one knows better about all planets. H.I. was indignant at this [statement] and M. told them that “nobody is promised to know about White Brotherhood, I verily told you, rather Shafran [S.M. Shafran, a mother of Z.G. Fosdik, who had ability to clairvoyance] will see than Bailey”.2

The following letter (23 August 1934) was published in “Letters of Helena Roerich” book in 2nd vol., but without the included fragment:

“Many naive people believe, that the dark forces work only with evil, debauch and crimes. How they are mistaken. So the rough forces and forces of small degrees work only. Much more dangerous are those who comes under a mask of light of the Teaching.You already know such example. In America there is a very extensive society, and the head of it receives the doctrine from the teacher, which does not open his name, naming himself by the Tibetan Brother. We know, who disappears under this pseudonym. The force of him is great. And purpose of this teacher, personificates as though a Teacher of the White Brotherhood, is to attract in his staff so many as possible of the good and useful people, which otherwise could help effectively to the Great Plan of Masters, Plan of rescue of a planet.

And these unfortunate ones, not having true recognition of fires of heart, fly as mothes on black fire that turns them to ashes. Ignorance, lack of sense-knowledge pushes them in embraces of darkness and deprives for a long time, if not for ever, salutary influence and attraction of Beams of a Great Stronghold of Light. Armageddon is terrible, you see the forces of darkness struggling for their existence, the despair makes them so rallied and persistent in achievement of their purpose. Prince of the World has a lot of talented, conscious and unconscious accomplices, and it is naive to think, that they are not able to work delicate. They are very refined and inventive and work on consciousness of the victims.

But all of them are deprived of heat of heart. I have books of this Tibetan Teacher, they are dry up extremely. One book is called as “White Magic”. To me is told, that the best pages are borrowed from the Doctrine of a White Brotherhood. It is interesting to note, that the head of this society for the greater prestige and attracting of the supporters of our books recommends them to their members and has founded classes for study of Agni Yoga books. So is bound the darkness with Light on the Earth.”3

The following is a selection of extracts from published letters written by H.I. Roerich and Z.G. Fosdik about Alice Bailey and her Arcane School. General note: all dates are given in Russian system, i.e.: (day, month, year).

“There is a theosophical Arcane School in America, which is very prosper now, and it have special classes dedicated to studies of Agni-Yoga books. Generally, in both Americas Agni-Yoga books are widespread, and groups for learning of these books formed in many towns. The second English edition of “Agni-Yoga” is already come to an end, as well as the supply of English publication of the first part of “Leaves of Morya’s Garden” was exhausted. There are many searching souls, but they don’t join to theosophies, an intolerance which prevails there spurns everybody.”4

“Why Russian Theosophies have to be in blinkers and to know nothing about true history of theosophical movement and its workers? Why referring to Alice Bailey they pass over in silence much more long-standing and important Centre in California which is guided by Great Teacher Hilarion? Why Centre in California can publish book by Teach. Hill. and presidents of Theosophical filials didn’t enlightened themselves with anything of this kind.”5

“Don’t have relations with Bailey’s school, because they are hidden enemies. Don’t sell them «Community». Tell them that it is not in trading now. «Illumination» can be sold without strong selection.”6

“The fierce ones use our books – hence the allusions to the One Source. But I state in the Name Sacred for me that neither D[jwal] K[hul] mentioned by them nor anyone of the Gr[eat] Brotherhood had ever or has now any connection with the Arc[ane] Sch[ool]. The founder was a definite medium. But no Teaching can be manifested by mediums. The purest among them can produce little books but not the whole series of volumes of the Teaching!”7

An addition to the above quote by a different translator:

“About Ussakovskaya did not hear from our collaborators. … Under condition of her withdrawal from Arcane School she may have the Help. It is necessary to warn her how many dark is going around of light. And first of all it is necessary to warn against the spouse [Foster Bailey] of the founder [Alice Bailey]. He is definitely a deceiver and dishonest man. Raging ones use our books – from here are hints on One Source. But I assert by the Name to me Innermost that mentioned by them D.K. and anybody from the Great Brotherhood never had and has no contact to Arcane School. Founder (she) was certain medium. But any Teaching can not be displayed by a medium. Purest (cleanest) of them can be displayed on small books, but not of the whole series of the books of the Teaching!”8

“Of course, my dear ones, do not give any rights and copyright to people, associated with Arcane School. Tell Branstedter and Rentz clearly that we were never connected with Arcane School or its founder and we can not cooperate with them. But there is no need to explain to them the reason for our forbearance, the less explanation the better. Every word from you is like a red cloth for a furious bull! The Great Lord definitely does not allow us to cooperate with A. Bailey’s followers. How many attempts to stain and blot the pure foundations of the Teaching!!”9

“Concerning Bransht[edter] and Rentz – let them to lie on a bed they made (to solve problems which they created). Tell them definitely that you cannot examine their conflicts and cannot give them rights on publication of new books until the raging ones have fallen out and legal process continuous. Also they have to learn firmly our definite condition not to confederate with any other Societies and Teachings.The Teaching of Living Ethics or, as Rentz names it now, Teaching of Life cannot be associated with any other teaching or teacher.

Branshtedter must to understand that we had not and have not anything common with Arcane School representatives. They used our Teaching, but we hardly affirm that Teaching of Living Ethics was given by definite Great Lord M. and it cannot proceed under the flag of Arcane School, not even be referred on a level with it. With fervour don’t give any rights on publications of new books. It is necessary to stop Rentz insanity and intrigues of Bailey and Branshtedter. They want to possess whole publication. We cannot admit that Teaching of Living Ethics will become a subject of conflicts and legal process. The Teaching cannot be possessed by persons who don’t understand difference between Great Lord M. and Mrs. Bailey’s Tibetan teacher. It must be stopped or the fierce ones will come to madness. The ardent (fiery) term of Teaching distribution in Europe isn’t come yet and big rearrangements anticipated in Western Countries. That small quantity of books of Teaching which are already available there is quite enough for seriously seeking souls.” (Letters to America, v.3 10.05.52)

“Also don’t worry about Arcane School. Such tumours existed and exist in all centuries and in all Teachings. What the origin of so much various schisms? They are unavoidable and often help to emphasize more clear the true pearls. Nature is beautiful in variety of its appearance. Only in variety we cognize corresponding values and meaning of each manifestation of life. Don’t be afraid of any patterns of life.”10

“Regard Rentz calmly, but with big caution. It is difficult to deal with unbalanced man! Delaying answer, give time for new circumstances to come. But stress that cooperation between members of different groups is absolutely necessary and nobody will be interested to maintain relations with fighting groups. Branshtedter is probably more positive person. You can tell him that nobody can prohibit him to publish several aphorisms taken from books of Teaching, but, of course, it must be indicated from what series of books they were extracted. It is not worth for us to have auspices of Arcane School or of any others.

One must not to mislead people about Source of Teaching books. Also tell him that neither my work, nor my state of heals and conditions of my life allow me to spend forces on the excess correspondence. I am wholly busy with completing of my Fiery Experiment and with work connected to this – write him this. But avoid to refer a conception of Cosmosness in correspondence. Tell these coworkers that I welcome them on a path of Teaching and wish the best prosperity. Sincerity and constant unbreakable striving to the Highest Ideal in Appearance they Chosen will bring them without doubts the merited and the best Answer.”11

(Translators note: I had to use word “Commander” which is definitely not the best. But I didn’t found a good word to translate Russian “voevoda”. This is very antique word which means a chief of military forces.)

[July 11, 1952]

“My dear ones, I answer to your letters from 27 and 28 June: “One should answer strong and categorically” – this was Told. Write my dear ones to these seditious ones, that you informed H[elena] I[vanovna] about appeared impossible situation among competitive coworkers, which is absolutely inadmissible nearby Teaching of Light, and translate them a Decision of the Great Lord. “Express My just Instruction to Rentz and Branshtedter. A cooperation of Arcane School with Agni-Yoga Society is absolutely impossible. And an appearance of suit and conflict between coworkers is absolutely inadmissible for Us. And Our entrusted mother of Agni-Yoga must not be overburdened with such intolerable phenomena. Stop a translation of My Books.

Enumeration of made sacrifices and complaints about suffering damage and loss cannot be made by coworkers of Stronghold of Light. Emphatically move away from work for My Teaching which don’t need wide distribution.Concealed Teaching is kept concealed with few disciples and We don’t plan to display obviously our Teaching on the crossroads, not only on dark ones, but also on ones doomed to collapse…” “Write by this way” – this was Told me.

My dear ones, how you were grieved receiving such severe Decision. But indeed, they broke all borders of tolerance and the furious ones have only themselves to blame. Vehemently show firm Will about small wreckers. We made a trial and none stand it, the furious ones strived for their profit. We don’t need such followers. “It is inadmissible such overburdening of heart of Mother of the World. I need a power of the mother of Agni-Yoga to curb underground fire, and for Cosmic Cooperation on the whole Fiery Path”.

Sure, translate them “Direction and Decision” only. Mention of mother of Agni-Yoga and Cosmic Cooperation are not for them. I hope they will go away.

For your information. The G[reat] L[ord] considers the works-compilations of A[lice] B[ailey] very pernicious. She definitely were a collaborator of dark forces. It is not difficult, given some knowledge, to compile such books, when you live in cities where hundreds of thousands occult works reside on the shelves of large libraries. The teacher of A[lice] B[ailey] does not belong to the Stronghold of Light. The G[reat] L[ord] renounces him. Pages of “White Magic” interlace in her works with a very definite black magic. And such a mixture is of course very harmful and begets great confusion and perversion in unstable minds.”12

“Thus my dear, you will have to stand a rush of dark forces, don’t be afraid! A shield of Light is raised over you when you fight for the Guarding of Teaching.”13

“The Teacher Djul Khul has nothing in common with Tibetan impostors of Madame A. Bailey”14

[10 October, 1954]

“Solar Hierarch stays at the highest sphere of our world and extremely seldom sends his Reflection and only to the most close disciples and coworkers. Solar Hierarch doesn’t manifest cooperation with anybody else, except that cooperation which is based on a sacral and secret Cosmic Right! But Great Hierarch can send messages and Directions through mediation of coworkers and disciples. Many beautiful brochures were manifested by those subtle receivers or mediators, but not by mediums. Messages were, of course, from Stronghold of Light. A sign of such messages are their simplicity, purity and shortness. But many pages were manifested by coworkers of Darkness, as, for example, in books of Alice Bailey.

Black Magic unavoidably get mixed with Light (White) one in the life, and only knowing and experienced disciple of Light (White) Lodge can discern forgery and distortion. So many beautiful pages made by Lord of Light are ingrained into works of Dark supporters. My advise you, my dear one, not to read books by Alice Bailey. At the end of her life she manifested herself as follower of Lucifer. At the beginning she didn’t feel embarrassed to express herself as a student of one Sikkim resident, somebody named Laden-La, who was on service for local government. We knew him. She called referred him as her teacher and even tried to link him with great Figures of White Brotherhood.

But definitely with the whole strength and responsibility I state that not a single Brother from the Stronghold of Light has ever cooperated with Mrs.Alice Bailey. In her yogic classes she used the books of “Living Ethics”. Much was given out from these books as if received by herself, using anonymity of the Teaching. Our coworkers in Am[erica], Sin[aida] Gr[igoryevna] included, are well aware of the personality and activities of this dark personage. Her activity became very deleterious when she had begun to present forecasts of her Tibetan teacher, reporting unprecedented prosperity, but not war, and when instead of the promised prosperity the years of war came, her authority was drastically debased. Besides, her health started to weaken and repeated blood transfusions certainly did not promote spiritual growth, and she passed away. She had a well developed intellect and sizable erudition but without any signs of spirituality.”15

“Thus, my dear one, it is necessary to strengthen oneself on the main foundations of the Teaching before to start interesting in existing now numerous literature on occultism and magic. Instead of books of Alice Bailey it is better to get to know the first brochures and “Esoteric Christianity” by A. Besant and, of course, the works of Svami Vivekananda and Ramakrishna! I don’t know the second so bright mind and talented popularizer of Teachings of Orient. I was Told to write you: to follow the Teaching of Orient and avoid their occident commentators. With fervour achieve a better understanding of the Teaching of “Living Ethics” and you will understand in what there is a New Light, the New Annunciation and what you have to develop in you first of all. You will fiery understand a difference between Teaching of Living Ethics and new teachings, which are manifested by various moneymakers with big financial success.”16

“But many pages were revealed by the followers of the darkness, for example, in the works of A. Bailey. Black Magic and White Magic are interlaced in life, and only an experienced and knowing disciple of White Lodge can discover substitution and distortions. Thus, many excellent pages of The Lord of The Light are ingrained in the works of Darkness’s followers. My advise, my darling, do not read A. Bailey books. In the end of life she manifested herself as a follower of Lucifer…. But definitely, by all my power and responsibility I affirm, that at no time, nobody from Brothers of Light’s Stronghold did not cooperated with Madame A. Bailey.”17

Astrological Perspectives on the TS and Helena Roerich

This whole article is the result of a project started on the first Leo full moon of 2002 – a ‘blue moon’ (23 July 2002), aimed at helping to heal the cleavages that exist between some followers of the groups listed above. Little did the author realise that he would be catapulted into a major spat involving some interpretors of the Agni Yoga teachings in an online forum. The incident served to highlight cleavages between many schools of thought.

The Sun on that full moon fell exactly upon the Leo Moon in the Theosophical Society (TS) chart. Moon is of course the ruler of the Cancer Ascendant in the TS chart, the soul quality that this entity is seeking to unfold. Part of the Cancer theme is around the family of world disciples that have been squabbling over this issue for so long.

Transiting Neptune, soul ruler of Cancer, squares natal Mercury in Scorpio, forcing truth to emerge from where it has been hidden, yet at the same time running the risk of the maya that Neptune can create in those who cannot bear its vibrations.

Transiting Neptune is also soul ruler of Blavatsky’s (HPB) Cancer rising chart, and exactly conjunct HPB’s progressed Sun in Aquarius (in 2002), a most significant occurrence. Both planets will go over natal Uranus in Aquarius in the next few years, which may symbolise the time it takes for some real headway to be made in ‘re-education’.

Theosophical Society

The progressed Moon in the TS horoscope was in Pisces when AAB experienced the infamous TS convention in August 1920, and is now by progression at the same degree of Pisces 82 years hence. Pisces, like Neptune, its co-ruler, can relate to subterfuge and deceit, deception and illusion, so perhaps the seeds of this issue lie here. Therefore it is appropriate that the threads of the past are are reconnected with some continuity.

There is also some amazing synastry between Helena Roerich and Alice Bailey that will be discussed in more detail later. Suffice to say for now though, that Roerich’s progressed Sun in 2002 is conjunct Bailey’s Sun, and transiting Saturn (in 2002) was going over both in August 2002. Some major causes of schisms between Roerich and Bailey came to light in an online forum around the second Leo full moon 23 August 2002.

Horoscope of Helena Roerich

Having read the above quotes, some long-term students may be forgiven for feeling shocked and incredulous that HR made these remarks. How could a relatively pure channel for the Master become so ‘poisoned’ against Alice Bailey? The answer is not hard to find, as HR’s horsocope reveals a challenging degree of personality integration needed in that life.

As an astrologer with a pro AAB stance, I could be easily accused of using astrology to back my argument. Yet I have always had great reverence and recognition for what HR brought through, and the Agni Yoga teachings in general. I have visited Naggar where Helena and Nicholas lived, which in 1993 was still preserved as a shrine to their memory. I have seen her Alice Bailey and HPB books still on the shelf of her study, well thumbed and studied!

Her birth time is unknown and if anyone can tell me otherwise, please let me know. As with any midday chart (see below) the rising sign is in doubt and sometimes the moon sign.

Her moon is definitely in Scorpio, as her portrait in the Decter book suggests. Even if the birth time were 10 hours earlier or 12 hours later, the Moon would still be in Scorpio. So for 22 hours of that 24 hour day it was in Scorpio – only two hours are in doubt, from 12 am-2am on the 12th Feb 1879.

Helena Roerich

This is an important consideration as the midday chart gives that Scorpio moon closely opposing Neptune – again for 12 hours either side of this time it would still be opposite Neptune (visonary/mystic).
This was of course one of the major significators of her psychic sensitivity. This opposition T-squared her Mercury (thinking and communication) in Aquarius, and there you have her major signature as a messenger of the approaching Aquarian Age.

Yet our greatest talents have usually their Achilles heel somewhere and no less so with this aspect. Scorpio Moon can have major problems around the issue of power particularly, can be very spiteful, vengeful, the scorpion with the sting in its tail – in other words, express some of the most negative emotions of the zodiac. Even in ‘spiritually advanced’ people. The Moon is the most unredeemed part of anyone’s chart and is where we get ourselves into the most trouble.

Helena Roerich

Jealousy (a very Scorpionic emotion) may have been one of the motivations for speaking about AAB the way she did. Combine that with the square to Mercury and you have someone who can use speech most destructively. Moon opposite Neptune can also be very nebulous at times, with no discrimination to sort out impressions that are being received. Moon is also very positively aspected to Venus in Pisces, where it is exalted, contributing to her physical beauty, as well as her psychic impressibility.

It is quite likely that the birth time is around midday, as Cancer rising does suit HR. She was the Mother of Agni Yoga, helping to birth the new teachings. Cancer rising puts her Sun in the ninth house of metaphysics, and also gives added importance to the Moon/Neptune opposition, as they are the respective personality and soul rulers of Cancer. HPB, also a medium for many of the Masters was Cancer rising.

HR’s Sun in Aquarius conjunct Jupiter (Aquarius’s soul ruler) is one of the most powerful parts of the horoscope. Both these planets square Pluto, planet of power and transformation, and dispositor of her Scorpio Moon. Sun square Pluto people have major lessons to learn around the right use of power, particularly if they are on the first ray line, as HR was (ray 1 soul). Positively, this Sun square Pluto would have given her great energy in helping to break down and help destroy that which impeded what she was to bring.

However, the combination of Sun square Pluto with a Scorpio Moon can give a double ‘signature’ on these themes, verging on paranoia. The Master has to take into account all these personality foibles when considering using any messenger, as would have DK with AAB.

AAB’s Mercury was also her messenger signature, placed in Cancer in the twelfth house, square to Jupiter. It was her greatest talent as an amanuensis, but also a major impediment in terms of her over-emotionality. HR and AAB also came into incarnation within about eighteen months of each other. Each was sent forth from the 1st and 2nd ray ashrams respectively – they are sisters from the One Ashram.18

Transits for Letters

Dates in astrology, for those who are unfamiliar, show the various planets in transit or progression, triggering the natal pattern harmoniously or with difficulty, thereby challenging the soul to work out its karma.

The dates of HR’s letters are revealing because the transits and progressions occurring in her chart at those times, were triggering some of its most unredeemed features.

The letters are in three groupings, and as far as the author is aware, these are all the letters that involve references to Alice Bailey. The first one in 1934, another grouping from September 16, 1951 to July 11, 1952, and several up to 1954 are the main ones.

1. “Viko” & “Algim”, 1993. 23.08.1934 (See quote in previous text)

Moon in Aquarius was going over her difficultly aspected Mercury on the day she made those remarks. In fact it was during a full moon period when the moon was only a couple of days from full. Moon was also squaring her natal Moon in Scorpio, and opposing AAB’s ascendant and Mars Interestingly, it was 68 years to the day, at the Leo full moon August 23, 2002, that the unpublished letters of Helena Roerich were made public.

The second major transit was that of Saturn, sitting right on her natal Sun and therefore triggering her Sun square Pluto aspect.

A third major transit was the progressed Moon in its own sign Scorpio. Depending upon its natal degree, it could be closer or further from its opposition to natal Pluto, which it opposes in the midday chart. (Transiting Mars and Pluto also exactly sextile natal Pluto)

There is more than enough evidence shown here that the liabilities in HR’s chart were triggered and expressed by her on that day, something that has poisoned for generations. Undiscriminating students of these letters have compounded the problem.

It is one thing to have the Agni Yoga teachings, relatively pure from their source, and yet another to mix it up with personal letters. One is universal and one is personal and therefore far more ‘tainted’. Where HR said in several instances that Morya told her so, perhaps sails very close to the wind in terms of using the Master’s name to back up undiscriminating personal remarks. It is something that was abused by certain leading members of the Theosophical Society and many other ‘spiritual’ groups since then. The temptation to do so, particularly if the individual has power issues, would be very tempting, and even something chosen unconsciously.

Viko and Algim letter 1934

2. Letter July 11, 1952: “Letters to America”, vol.4. (See previous text)

This was a letter which culminated a series that started on September 16, 1951. During that period there was a major transit of Pluto opposing HR’s Jupiter (and Sun). This date is used, as it is one of the most vitriolic letters and has several other major significators in the chart working themselves out.

Progressed Sun is opposite HR’s Scorpio Moon (her major liability in this case) and transiting Mars that day was exactly conjunct the Scorpio Moon.

Natal Mars was also very closely opposed by progressed Moon in Cancer in the twelfth house of secret enemies. A grand cross was created by this opposition to transiting Saturn opposite progressed Saturn.

Transiting Pluto was opposite Jupiter, a transit that had been in orb since September 16, 1951. This transit was 3 degrees applying to the opposition of HR’s Sun, a quite reasonable orb for Pluto according to many astrologers, especially if the subject is of a Plutonic or Scorpionic persuasion.

July 1952 letter

3. Letters to E.P. Inghe, 10.10.54.(See previous text)

From the last transit discussed in 1952, Pluto by this time had been exactly opposing HR’s Sun, now still in orb but starting to move away from the exact oppostion. It would have been one of the most trying transits of her life.

Transiting Saturn had also just gone over natal Moon in Scorpio, and was now opposed to her progressed Sun in Taurus.

Transiting Venus was in Scorpio on this day, opposing Pluto, and therefore triggering the natal Sun/Pluto square again. Transiting Mars had also just entered the seventh house of relationships.

Transiting Mercury was in Scorpio and squaring the troublesome natal Mercury.

It is the author’s re-stated contention that Helena was human, and it is human to err. Although this analysis may seem to focus on the negative aspects, the motivation for so doing was originally prompted by the disclosure of her unpublished letters.

For this author and many other students, although this is a somewhat distressing distraction, the Agni Yoga teachings which HR brought through, stand. As with many disciples and even very advanced ones like Krishnamurti , their frailties and vanities show their humanity.19

October 1954 letter

Comments by Russian Esotericist – Uri Gorbunov

Extract from his book: An Esotericist’s Journey in America

Fifthly, in 1994, the Siberian paper The Banner of Peace, headed by chief-editor Genadii Gorchakov, instead of peace declared war upon many teachings, and among them the teachings of the Tibetan. Attacks were launched against Alice Bailey by those who had no fluency in reading English, and also, who had not seen with their own eyes one of her books in the original. For many they sounded very convincing, because in the personal letters of Helena Roerich it is actually possible to find several very unflattering references within them. Sectarian attitudes by one group of esotericists in their relationship with others, have been observed throughout all historical ages. Our own is no exception.

This particular matter requires consideration in more details. Doubts have arisen that in the letters published in the third volume of letters, the compilers may have added the above-mentioned unflattering references. Who was there to check the manuscripts? Who would be searching? And now the matter has happened. Doubts emerge. This may be called a negative reaction. But consideration must be given to the psychology of the narrow-minded Russian, who believes in the printed word.

As is said in the Russian proverb, “What is written with the quill, do not cut down with an axe”. Who would find advantage in introducing doubt into the minds of the many beginner esotericists who are now in significant numbers throughout the Russian expanses? Clearly, those who would make a lot of profit through cheap authority, fame, money and finally through publication of books of the Roerichs, and of writers from the Roerich associations. Those who have never been occultists and do not know anything of classical esotericism.

Those who do not understand that all esoteric teachings, if they are authentic, correlate one with another, because they all originate from a single source – from Hierarchy. Furthermore, many know that Alice Bailey and the Tibetan knew of the transference of Agni Yoga to humanity. They wrote in A Treatise on White Magic (pp. 428-9) in this way:

“World unity, brotherhood in its true sense, the growth of telepathic interplay, the elimination of the non-essentials which serve to separate the thoughts of men and bring about separateness on the physical plane, and the laying of a true emphasis upon the fundamentals of the Ageless Wisdom, the manifestation of a true understanding, the bringing about of at-one-ment with the soul, the recognition of those who belong to the group of world Saviours – this is the immediate work to be done and this must engross your attention.

“This and this alone warrants the expenditure of all that any of you have to give – love and life, time and money.

“This and this alone justifies your existence and calls forth from all of you who respond to the vision that utter self-sacrifice which is so rare and so far-reaching in its effects. The casting of all that one has at the feet of the Lord of Life in order that the work of world salvage may go forward, the elimination out of one’s life of all that can possibly hinder, the giving of all that one has until it hurts to give, the ruling of one’s life on the basis of surrender, asking oneself all the time: What can I relinquish in order that I may help more adequately? – that and more than that lies ahead of all of you who hear the call and respond to the need and opportunity.

“Let me tell you this – this group now in process of forming, will in time develop its own “yoga” and school of training which will gradually supersede that of the raja yoga and bhakti yoga schools. The method of training will only be given to those who have trained the mind and learnt to control the emotions. Hence the key to what is now going on. The mode of training will be no easy short cut to the goal. Only the intelligent can attain it and only coordinated personalities will be eligible to the teaching. The keynote of the new yoga will be synthesis; its objective will be conscious development of the intuitive faculty. This development will fall into two categories: first, the development of the intuition and of true spiritual perception, and secondly, the trained utilisation of the mind as an interpreting agent.

In the book Agni Yoga, some of the teaching to be given has filtered through but only from the angle of the will aspect. No book has as yet made its appearance which gives in any form whatsoever the “yoga of synthesis”. We have had “bhakti yoga” or union through devotion. Raja Yoga is now receiving emphasis, which is union through the mind. It sounds like a redundancy to speak of union through synthesis, but it is not so. It is union through identification with the whole – not union through realisation or through vision. Mark well this distinction, for it holds the secret of the next step for the personalities of the race.

The Bhagavad Gita gives us primarily the key to the yoga of devotion. Patanjali teaches us the yoga of the mind. In the Gospel story we have the portrayal of realisation, but the key or the secret of identification is still withheld. It lies in the custody of a few in this integrating group of mystics and knowers and will be wrought out into manifestation in the furnace of their individual experience and thus given to the world. But the time is not yet. The group must grow in strength and knowledge and in intuitive perception.”

It is impossible to believe that Helena Roerich, who had written the 15 volumes on Brotherhood and the rules for the Living Ethics, might have written impolite words against any esoteric teaching. Besides that, she was simply human, and as such may well have had mistaken opinions which she has stated, not in the books of the Masters, but in personal letters which, more often than not, are not written for publication. It is important to bear in mind all those today who would make the Roerichs out as saints, whereas they themselves, as members of this great and exceedingly modest family, would always unwearily speak out against such notions, knowing the weakness in the human condition.

“Other followers of Agni Yoga declared Helena Roerich an icon. They call people to love her and pray to her. The popularity of the Agni Yoga teaching is steadily growing in Russia.” (Gorbunov)

Attack on the Ashram

Did the letters of HR constitute an ‘attack’ on DK’s ashram?

“This “sharing” process does not involve what is usually understood as the “sharing of trouble.” Personality difficulties and personality problems are not permitted entrance into an Ashram; only evolutionary limitations and lack of perfection (limitations in soul expression, indicating the grade or stage of discipleship) are recognized. If, however, disciples act or react in a way that brings attack upon the Ashram, that is naturally recognized, but these issues are fortunately very rare; they may become more common as the spiritual inspiration to which humanity is now subjected and reacting brings far greater numbers of disciples into relation with the Hierarchy.

In the case where a disciple has opened a door of attack upon an Ashram – and this has happened, as you know, in the case of my Ashram [DK]- the work of the united disciples is to “seal the door” against the menacing evil, to withdraw themselves from the usual confidence shown to an erring disciple, but to stand at the same time in steadfast love beside him until such time as he has learned the error of his ways and has himself taken the needed steps to arrest the evil which he was responsible in starting.” It must be remembered that none of this is a personality or an individual attack upon an Ashram.

The relatively feeble efforts of a person are unavailing and make no real impact upon the conscious life of the Ashram. The evil released must emanate from a group, though it is released through the agency of an individual disciple. That is a totally different matter. A disciple may do this through misuse of the lower mind and its rationalizing capacity, which can make black to appear white and prove that good intention is responsible for evil-distributed energy; or the disciple can let in evil under the influence of glamor, provided again that it is group evil. In these ways, the disciple simply turns the key, and group evil enters.

For instance, the harm done to the Ashram of the Master Morya by H.P.B. in his earlier incarnation as Cagliostro, (Cagliostro, W.R.H. Trowbridge) is only now fading out, and its repercussions affected the whole Hierarchy. The harm attempted on my Ashram has been more easily offset, and the source of hate which it represented failed in its attempt because of its general ill repute. It has been offset by love and understanding which is not so easily the case in a first ray attack.”20

“I ask you also to sever your connection with all groups which are seeking to destroy and to attack, no matter how sincere their motive. Range yourself on the side of the workers for constructive ends, who are fighting no other groups or organizations and who have eliminated the word “anti” out of their vocabulary. Stand on the side of those who are silently and steadily building for the new order – an order which is founded on love, which builds under the impulse of brotherhood, and which possesses a realization of a brotherhood which is based on the knowledge that we are each and all, no matter what our race, the children of the One Father, and who have come to the realization that the old ways of working must go and the newer methods must be given a chance.”21

“…Initiates may, and do, fall…”

“That all initiates measure not up to this standard may be ascribed to several things, but the note they sound should be on the side of righteousness; the recognition of their own shortcomings which they will evidence will be sincere and public, and their struggle to conform to the highest standard will be known, even though perfection may not be achieved. Initiates may, and do, fall, and thereby incur the working of the law in punishment. They may, and do, by this fall injure the group, and thereby incur the karma of readjustment, having to expiate the injury through later prolonged service, wherein the group members themselves, even though unconsciously, apply the law; their progress will be seriously hindered, much time being lost in which they must work out the karma with the injured units. The very fact that a man is an initiate, and therefore the medium for force of a greatly increased kind, makes his lapses from the straight path to have more powerful effects than is the case with a less advanced man; his retribution and punishment will be equally greater.

Inevitably he must pay the price before he is allowed to proceed further upon the Way. As for the group he injures, what should their attitude be? A recognition of the gravity of the error, a wise acceptance of the facts in the case, a refraining from unbrotherly criticism, and a pouring out of love upon the sinning brother:—all this, coupled with such action as will make clear to the onlooking general public that such sins and infringements of the law are not condoned. To this must be added an attitude of mind within the group concerned which will lead them (whilst taking firm action) to help the mistaken brother to see his error, to work out the retributive karma, and then to reinstate him in their regard and respect when due amends have been made.”22

Agni Yoga Forum – Astrology Chart

Interesting to note the founding of this group at Yahoo on April 19, 1999. A midday chart for New York comes up with Leo rising. Personality ruler of Leo is the Sun, in the last degree of Aries in the ninth house, which indicates pioneering or trail-blazing enquiries into metaphysical thought. Jupiter is also in this house and is of course ‘accidentally dignified’. Mercury, soul ruler of Aries, is also in Aries and in the ninth, indicating the potential of exercising the intuitional or buddhic faculties over the lower mind.

Moon is in Gemini, how perfect for a ‘chat’ group! (sometimes too much chat) and is trine Uranus, the Hierophant and ruler of occultism.The most difficult part of the chart is an exact T-square: An opposition between Saturn in Taurus and Mars in Scorpio, T-squaring Neptune in Aquarius.

From one angle it speaks of the battle between attachment (Taurus) to knowledge (Saturn) and intensely emotional (Scorpio) adherence to that knowledge, resisting and fighting (sometimes acrimoniously) all who challenge that reality structure. It also reflects the penetrating depth of the enquiry (Scorpio) and the treasury of wisdom (Taurus, the Mother of Illumination) which an Aquarian group of souls such as this possesses.

This opposition T-squares, or focuses upon Neptune in Aquarius. Aquarius represents the group process of unfolding consciousness through interaction of the sum of its parts. Neptune at a personality level can represent the group glamours and maya generated by the negative aspect of unredeemed Saturn and Mars. Particularly with the difficult square between Mars and Neptune, which both happen to rule the solar plexus in esoteric astrology. The solar plexus is of course that realm where lower mind and emotions meet. It can make for subterfuge, scheming, hidden agendas, paranoia, self-delusion etc.

However, Neptune is intimately related to Love-Wisdom and its expression from the heart, after the smoke and fire of the burning ground of the solar plexus has been raised to the ‘fiery chalice’. It is said that Neptune is a term synonymous with Lord Maitreya, Lord of Compassion and Wisdom. Neptune is also soul ruler of this Leo rising chart – Leo rules the heart.

Therefore, for this chart/group/entity to reach its full potential, these heart qualities must supervene over all else. Neptune in Aquarius, for some deeper students of astrology, also has an intimate relation at an hierarchical level, and deals with monadic consciousness. The potential is limitless.

Revealing also is looking at the progressions and transits for this entity now (August 2002). Progressed Moon is at five degrees of Leo (say no more!) and has transiting Jupiter at the same degree, both filling in the ‘missing leg’ of the T-square just mentioned. (This all exactly squares Roerich’s Moon!) In other words creating a ‘grand cross’ in this horoscope of very challenging proportions, akin to breaking down crystallisations of thinking, mental pride and all the other vanities of a developing, integrating and synthesising entity.

Interesting will be when Pluto starts to oppose the Gemini Moon at the end of this year [2002] and for all of next year – now there’s some major transformations about ideas. Moon is always where the most unredeemed aspect of any entity lies, so looking at the negative aspects of Gemini Moon will reveal that: lower mind, mentally reactive, does not carefully consider first, superficial, knows a little bit about alot of things, talks too much, knows too much, doesn’t listen, short attention span, over-impressionable, deceitful, duplicitous, dishonest, ‘devious diplomacy and subtlety’ etc. If Pluto transits can be felt up to five degrees approaching, then the Gemini ‘dweller’ is coming out now.

The intensity of relationships is also borne out by the close opposition of Venus and Pluto. Pluto in Sagittarius is about the destruction of old ideas, and Venus as soul ruler of Gemini (and placed there) has the potential to harmonise the pairs of opposites upon the mental plane. This she does by creating new templates, as Gemini has a close relation to the etheric plane and all that eventually manifests onto the physical. Hence groups such as this in cyberspace have a huge potential for world transformation, consciously or unconsciously, in refining, through right dialogue (Gemini), the very structures of the planetary mental body.

Agni Yoga Forum

New group of World Servers

We all have our ideas and slants on the teachings, much of it imperfect, what better way to refine that than through dialogue or debate? Not the type of debate based on ego and winning, but listening and learning. If we rigorously adhere to our cherished concepts, cultural, racial or theosophical conditioning – without a willingness to listen, or explore, then what hope?

What would be the collective shadow of the New Group of World Servers (NGWS), or ‘cultural creatives’, as another recent term has coined it? As that world group is ruled collectively by the axis of Taurus/Scorpio, there is much to be learnt from the energies of these two signs around desire and the death of desire. Something the Buddha (A Taurean) taught much about.

Exoterically, Taurus is one of the most intransigent signs in terms of adherence to ideas that its acquisitive nature absorbs. This is because there is a strong emphasis on the concrete mind and an orientation to form life. Taurus is also the sign of desire, of powerful astral urges that can manifest as many things, particularly sex. Put desire and concrete mind together and you have kama-manas (desire mind), where the World Aspirant (Humanity) is mainly focussed. This is a particularly, astrally messy area, and surfaces in acrimonious debates (not dialogues) with the negative emotions of hate, separativeness, desire for power etc., as individuals adhere to their precious constructs of ‘reality’, or conspiracy theories.

The higher octave of Taurus is as the Mother of Illumination, but this can only be truly accessed when desire mind has undergone its death in the opposite sign Scorpio. Scorpio is the major sign of testing for the Second Degree initiation which many of the world group (NGWS) are headed for. With Pluto the Lord of Death ruling this sign, it requires a death and subsequent transformation to take place, a releasing of the ahamkara (illusion of self), and a demonstration of complete control of the astral realm, with its associated maya and illusion.

Hercules has to defeat the Lernean Hydra in the stinking swamp (of kama-manas), kneel in humility, and raise the nine-headed hydra above his head into the clear light of reason (buddhi). The teachings of HPB, HR and AAB are considered by many to be the three pillars (strength, wisdom and beauty), foundational to the Aquarian cycle we are entering.

“Tolerance is one of the conditions of observation. True observation is the basis of cognition. An intolerant man cannot form a just picture of things. He deprives himself of observation and loses perspicacity. What kind of cognition can be born from egoism which rejects reality? There are many examples of great truths having been subjected to distortion, because of intolerance. It may be said that intolerance is ignorance, but this definition will be too mild. Intolerance is evil; there can be no good intolerance. It invariably contains falsehood, because it conceals the truth. Only those who definitely lack intelligence can light-mindedly fail to consider intolerance as something unworthy.”23

Part III of IV

  1. Z.G.Fosdik, «My Teachers. Meetings with Roerichs », 25.11.29, p. 537. []
  2. Z.G.Fosdik, «My Teachers. Meetings with Roerichs », 3.3.23, p. 168. []
  3. The Letters of Helena Roerich. 1932-1955. p. 54. Novosibirsk, “Viko” & “Algim”, 1993. Written 23.08.1934. []
  4. Letters to America, v.1, 17.2.34. []
  5. Letters to Baltic states, 07.01.37. []
  6. Letters to America, v.3, 16.09.51. []
  7. 7.12.51, “Letters to America”, vol.1. []
  8. Letters to America” III vol. p. 274-275 7.12.1951. []
  9. 27-Mar-52, “Letters to America”, vol.3. []
  10. Letters to America, v.3, 01.01.52. []
  11. Letters to America, v.3, 15.02.52. []
  12. 11-Jul-52, “Letters to America”, vol.4. []
  13. Letters to America, v.4, 11.July 1952. []
  14. E.I. Roerich Letters to E.P. Inghe, 04.03.53. []
  15. 10-Oct-54, a letters to E.P.Inge. []
  16. Letter to H.P. Inge, 10.10.54. []
  17. E.I. Roerich Letters to E.P. Inghe”, 10.10.54. []
  18. See Soul Cycles of  the Seven Rays I which includes an astro-biography of AAB: []
  19. See The Initiations of Krishnamurti:An Astrological Biography. Phillip Lindsay. []
  20. Discipleship in the New Age II, 331. []
  21. Esoteric Psychology I , 188. []
  22. Initiation Human and Solar, Alice Bailey. pp.83-4. []
  23. Brotherhood, Helena Roerich. #409. []

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