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Taking Theosophical ideas

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Purpose and Origins of

The Secret Doctrine

Posted 15/2/07


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In his Review of The Secret Doctrine, published in 1888 (less than one year after the Secret Doctrine itself in 1888) W Q Judge states the following agenda for the book;

"To show that Nature is not a fortuitous concurrence of atoms, and to assign to man his rightful place in the scheme of the Universe; to rescue from degradation the archaic truths which are the basis of all religions; and to uncover, to some extent, the fundamental unity from which they all spring; finally, to show that the occult side of Nature has never been approached by the Science of modern civilization."


The rejection of theories that suggest that we arrived at where we are by chance “fortuitous concurrence of atoms” is basic to the Theosophical argument and still remains at odds with much scientific thinking. Despite the belief in a plan for the evolution of the universe, Theosophy does not speculate on God, just accepts that the universe emanates from an unknowable principle.


Judge also refers to the place of man in the evolutionary scheme. There is also a reference to Ancient Wisdom in the sense that all religions are derived from one original source of knowledge but the knowledge has become obscured and distorted.


Judge goes on to say that H P Blavatsky, although author of the Secret Doctrine, could not have produced it entirely on her own.


it is not the outcome of the mental or other experience of any one person. No human brain could singly conceive a scheme so vast, so complex in details, so simple of base. It is evidently an aggregation beginning far back in archaic times.”


H P Blavatsky herself always claimed to be the messenger and not the inventor or owner of the ideas.


Judge explains that the obscure Stanzas of Dzyan  is the basis of the Secret Doctrine.


“The basis of this remarkable work is the "Book of Dzyan," an archaic Ms. unknown to the western world and secretly preserved in the Far East.”


He says of the Stanzas


“The stanzas are weird, magnificent. They have the grand calm of classics, joined to that subtle, soul-stirring quality which is of all time and conveys the aroma of the orientalist


Much has been made since its writing of the help given to H P Blavatsky by Ascended Masters in the writing of the Secret Doctrine. Judge acknowledges this but in a rather low key way;


“The style is abrupt and full of variations which show the work of different minds and sustain the author's claim to the aid of Tibetan adepts.”


It is possible that Judge wished not to draw too much attention to the Ascended Masters in an article published in a general and not specifically Theosophical journal. He simply recognizes that the Masters’ influence.


Review of The Secret Doctrine By W Q Judge


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