Published by Blavatsky Study Center. Online Edition copyright 2004.

Memorandum from
Damodar K. Mavalankar

[Reprinted from the First Report of the Committee of the Society for Psychical Research, Appointed to Investigate the Evidence for Marvellous Phenomena offered by Certain Members of the Theosophical Society, Appendix IX, pp. 87-88, London, 1884.  This online edition is reprinted by permission of the
Society for Psychical Research, London.]


(Communicated to us by Mr. Damodar K. Mavalankar, Joint Recording
Secretary of the Theosophical Society.)

Adyar (Madras), India.
23rd September, 1884.


Since it is considered desirable to collect evidence regarding the occurrence of occult phenomena during Madame Blavatsky’s absence, I shall say here a few words concerning the same.  I must first state that I had the moral certainty concerning the existence of the Himalayan Mahatmas long before I heard of the name of the Theosophical Society, nay, even before it was formed in America.  Being of a religious turn of mind, it was the constant end and aim of my aspirations to come in contact with personal relations with the Yogis.  When some of the orthodox Brahmins told me that in this Kali Yuga no true Yogi could be found, I always argued that either no Yogi could have existed in any Yuga, or that if any existed before there must be similar persons now, however small may be their number at the present time.  Our sacred literature was too full of the events of the lives of such great men, and I could never believe that it was all the fiction of a poetic brain.  These men must have their successors living in some secluded part of the world, watching the destinies of the world, and assisting every individual effort to rise in the scale of progress.  Moreover, there is so much of evil in the world that the equilibrium could not be preserved except the other pole were represented by the living Yogis.  For such arguments and belief I was looked upon as a religious enthusiast, and being constantly engaged in the performance of religious rites and observances, not on a few occasions fear was entertained that I might run away into the jungles in search of the Mahatmas.  In my childhood I had a very dangerous illness, and doctors gave me up for lost.  While my relatives were every moment expecting my death, I had a vision which made such a deep impression on my mind that I could never forget it.  Then I saw a certain personage --- whom I then considered to be a Deva, i.e., God --- who gave me a peculiar medicine; and curiously enough, I began to recover from that time.  Some years after that, while I was one day engaged in meditation, I saw the identical Personage and recognised him as my Saviour.  Once more He saved me from the clutches of death.  It was some years after this last occasion that the founders of the Theosophical Society came to India; and within a few months I joined the Society.  Since then I have witnessed several phenomena, both in the presence and absence of Madame Blavatsky, in the company of others or while alone.  These several accounts have from time to time been published in the Theosophist over my own name.  There are several other occurrences not so mentioned, which I wrote about in private correspondence to Theosophical friends in London and New York. Especially the account of my going to the Mahatmas and staying with them last year, will be of interest to inquirers after truth.  This account was published in the Theosophist for January, 1884.  (See Appendix VIII.)  I may here add that some time after I joined the Society, I saw several Mahatmas, both in their astral form and physical bodies, one of whom was the Mahatma known as Mr. Sinnett’s correspondent and the author of the letters published in “The Occult World.”  And when I saw Him, I at once identified Him with the majestic Power I had seen in my youth thrice, He who had saved my life twice and appeared once during my meditation.  I have got several letters from Him and others; and all those, written by the same person, whether received by me direct or through anybody else, bear the same handwriting.  Latterly, since They have chosen to give me verbal instructions, I have been receiving very few written communications.  But even these few I have been receiving since Madame Blavatsky’s departure to Europe.  One especially may be noted here.  As there were certain difficulties here, I wrote a letter to the Mahatma and put it in the Shrine.  In the same letter I had enclosed another letter addressed by Mr. P. Shrinevas Row to the Mahatma.  It lay in the Shrine for some time.  One day I received a letter from Madame Blavatsky from England.  In it was enclosed the Mahatma’s reply.  That reply was in answer to the question put by me in the Shrine, about which I had written nothing to Madame Blavatsky.  After receiving the reply, I went up to the Shrine to look on the packet put by me there, but I found it had disappeared.  The key being in my possession nobody else could have taken it.  However, I was sorry that there was no reply to Mr. Shrinevas Row’s letter.  But the same afternoon, while Mr. T. Vijayaraghava Charloo was working in the office, as usual, he found the Mahatma’s reply to Mr. Shrinevas Row on his table, in a place where there was nothing a minute before, he being at his table all the while.  I have received several letters for the Mahatma from various members during the last few months; and some of the replies to them were received by me to be sent to the writers, while others were received by my colleagues in the office or sometimes by the writers direct.  Before joining the Society, as well as after, during Madame Blavatsky’s absence as well as her presence, under a thousand and one different circumstances, I have received several letters for myself or for others from different Mahatmas, have seen them, talked to them, heard their voices, and seen several kinds of phenomena.