Published by Blavatsky Study Center. Online Edition copyright 2003.
Mr. Judge's Alleged Diary
by Albert E. S. Smythe
[Reprinted from The Canadian Theosophist (Hamilton, Ontario, Canada), May 15, 1932, pp. 69-70.]
The mystery that has attended all the messengers of the Masters clings closely around the person of William Quan Judge. Part of that mystery is revealed in the article by Mr. Cyrus Field Willard which we print this month. There are many in the Theosophical Movement who will be able to corroborate his statement. There are many who will scoff at it. In the outside world it will meet with the usual reception. But this if far from being all there is to be told about Mr. Judge or the "Rajah".
It will always be a disputed point with many whether the whole story is not a fictitious fabric. Even those who were most familiar with the facts after a time begin to doubt the evidence of their own eyes and senses, and refuse longer to abide by their former convictions. The conspiracy by which large numbers of the members of the Theosophical Society in America were led to believe that Mrs. Katherine A. Tingley had been appointed by Mr. Judge as his successor has led to still further skepticism, and cast doubt on the bona fides of Mr. Judge himself. The statement was made that Mr. Judge had left a "Diary" in which he had indicated Mrs. Tingley as the person chosen to lead the Movement in America after him. He himself had refused to be regarded as a successor to Madame Blavatsky. He asserted with conviction that she had no successor and could have none.
In spite of this there has grown up a supplementary doctrine of Apostolic Succession, which we now find Dr. de Purucker bending to his purpose, as others in other directions have also done. The true esoteric teaching is that such persons as Madame Blavatsky are sui generis and cannot be duplicated.
The "Diary" was never exhibited to an independent critic. The present writer was promised an inspection of it, but was always put off with one excuse or another when he asked. Some one else had it, it was locked up in the safe, and so on. And one was trustful in those days. Mr. Hargrove was regarded like Mr. Gilbert's hero, as "a singularly pure young man", and his assurances were sufficient for all who knew him.
He was most emphatic in his correspondence as to the genuineness of the proceedings. Now it appears that no one ever saw the alleged "Diary" except Mr. Hargrove, Mr. J.H. Fussell and Mrs. Tingley herself. Mr. Neresheimer who found it only glanced at it and hastened to give it to Mrs. Tingley, who kept it and returned it to Mr. Neresheimer 32 years later at Point Loma, as he says, "In the presence of the usual Committee, by some curious 'fluke of fate', she handed me the Diary with the words: 'this book' will be safe in your hands'."
He had never seen it in the interval, and at no time had any one had the opportunity or the desire to compare its contents with the circular sent out on April 3, 1896 by Mrs. Tingley, Mr. Fussell and Mr. Hargrove. The alleged quotations from the Diary do not appear in it, but it was only some years after Mr. Neresheimer received it back that it occurred to him to make a comparison.
He states that "these alleged 'messages and quotations' attributed to Mr. Judge could only have been concocted by Mrs. Tingley, assisted by Mr. Hargrove and Mr. J.H. Fussell, who alone were closely associated with Mrs. Tingley at Headquarters at that time, and who, with her, drafted all the communications that then went out from Headquarters. I refer particularly to these 'messages and quotations' declared by Mr. Hargrove, on pp. 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, and 11 of the pamphlet, to have been received by Mr. Judge through 'Promise' from H.P.B. and entered by him in his 'diary'. Furthermore, I desire to say that both the one-page circular , dated with a stamp, March 29th, 1896, and the pamphlet dated April 3rd, 1896, were never approved by me and were sent out without my knowledge and never seen by me until after they were in general circulation among the members of the Esoteric Section."
This is pretty conclusive that the whole theory of Leadership which resulted so disastrously for the Theosophical Society in America was cooked up by her who was most interested, and two assistants both of whom are still living, and who can now make what explanations they please.
As one of the dupes I have made such reparation as I can. We lose nothing by trusting others. Our karma will take care that we get the lessons we need and the experience that will strengthen us for the future. I did not go far with Mrs. Tingley for I could not be persuaded to follow anything but the principles of Theosophy as Madame Blavatsky taught it. To those principles we all owe allegiance, but not to any Leader.
It is to hoped that Mr. Neresheimer can be persuaded to publish in full his account of this affair. He is no more to blame than any of the others who were deceived by the clever impostor who set herself, as I believe, to wreck the Theosophical Movement. She has not succeeded, although she was able to shake the confidence of many earnest members in each other; even worse, to shake their confidence in the Masters; and what was also bad enough, to give an opening to other deceivers to continue the false notion of a succession of Teachers, to which these deluded ones either personally claimed to belong, or were credited with the honour by their equally deluded followers.
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"William Q. Judge and Katherine Tingley" series of articles