Excerpt from The Building of the Kosmos and Other Lectures, 1894: Delivered at the Eighteenth Annual Convention
The four lectures printed in this volume were delivered to the delegates and members of the Theosophical Society, assembled for the Annual Convention at Adyar, Madras, on December 27th, 28th, 29th, 3oth, 1893. They were intended to show the value of the teachings Of H. P. Blavatsky as a guide to the Obscurer meanings of the Hindu Sacred books, and so to vindicate at once the useful ness of the Theosophical and the Hindfi doctrines. They were intended also to show the identity of these doctrines, and to prove that any one who believes the Theosophical teachings must accept those Of the Vedas and the Purdnas on fundamental matters. That Theosophy is a fragment of the Brahma Vidya Of pre-vaidic days, that the Shruti are the best exoteric presentment of Brahma Vidyz'i, that the Purdnas were intended to give to the class excluded from the study of the Vedas the spiritual truths contained in the latter in a concrete form easy of assimilation - such were the ideas which sought expression in these lectures.
My acceptance of Theosophical teachings has to me, from the beginning, implied the acceptance of the Hindu Scriptures as the mine out of which the gold of Spiritual Knowledge was to be dug. As a Philosophy, Theosophy may be held intellectually apart from Hinduism as from all Religions, though reproducing on many points the Advaita Vedanta; but if any attempt be made to draw from it spiritual sustenance, if it be taught as Religion as well as Philosophy, then in the Hinduism which is its earliest and fullest exoteric presentment will the need for worship find its completest satisfaction. I do not mean that devotion may not clothe itself in various religions garbs; and that if a man have a Religion when he becomes a Theosophist, he will not naturally seek in that Religion the spiritual food he requires and will not therein find it. But if he comes into Theosophy, as I did, from Mate rialism, then he will most probably in his devotion adopt the ancient Sanskrit forms preserved in Hindfiism, with which he has become intellectually familiar in his philosophical studies. Theosophy has been to me not only intellectually but also devotionally satisfying, and devotional Theosophy finds in Hindfiism its most ancient and most natural expression. The student Of Brahma Vidya may thus as a Bhakta become also Hindfi, recognizing that Gnyfinam and Bhakti are both necessary for the evolution Of the Spiritual life.
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