COMMENT ON THE PERFECT WAY
[The Theosophist, Vol. IV, No. 4, January, 1883, p. 88]
[In a letter to the Editor, the “Writers of The Perfect Way,” Dr. Anna B. Kingsford and Edward Maitland state: “We are profoundly convinced that The Theosophical Society . . . would exhibit both wisdom and learning by accepting the symbology of the West as it does that of the East . . . we invite . . . The Theosophical Society to recognize the equal claim of the Catholic Church with the Buddhist, Brahman and other Eastern churches to the possession of mystical truth and knowledge.” H. P. B. appends to the article the following note:]
It is most agreeable to us to see our Reviewer of the “Perfect Way” and the writers of that remarkable work thus clasping hands and waving palms of peace over each other’s heads. The friendly discussion of the metaphysics of the book in question has elicited, as all such debates must, the fact that deep thinkers upon the nature of absolute truth scarcely differ, save as to externals. As was remarked in Isis Unveiled, the religions of men are but prismatic rays of the one only Truth.* If our good friends, the Perfect Wayfarers, would but read the second volume of our work, they would find that we have all along been of precisely their own opinion that there is a “mystical truth and knowledge deeply underlying” Roman Catholicism, which is identical with Asiatic esotericism; and that its symbology marks the same ideas, often under duplicate figures. We even went so far as to illustrate with woodcuts the unmistakable derivation of the Hebrew Kabala from the Chaldean—the archaic parent of all later symbology—and the Kabalistic nature of nearly all the dogmas of the R.C. Church. It goes
* [Vol. II, p. 639.]
without saying that we, in common with all Asiatic Theosophists, cordially reciprocate the amicable feelings of the writers of The Perfect Way for the Theosophical Society. In this moment of supreme effort to refresh the moral nature and satisfy the spiritual yearnings of mankind, all workers, in whatsoever corner of the field, ought to be knit together in friendship and fraternity of feeling. It would be indeed strange if any misunderstanding could arise of so grave a nature as to alienate from us the sympathies of that highly advanced school of modern English thought of which our esteemed correspondents are such intellectual and fitting representatives.