To the Members of the Theosophical Society
THE LEADBEATER CASE.
THE Protest Committee of the British Section appointed at the Caxton Hall meeting on December 19, 1908, having issued on February 20 last the following Final Protest Resolutions for signature by members of the British Section, have now to place on record the result of their appeal to the Section.
THAT WHEREAS, at the last Convention of the British Section of the Theosophical Society, a Resolution was passed calling upon the President and General Council of the Society to take such action as would ensure "that the repudiation by the Society of this pernicious teaching (the teaching which determined the resignation of Mr. C. W. Leadbeater) may be unequivocal and final":
AND WHEREAS the President has replied to this Resolution in a printed Letter to the Members of the Theosophical Society, dated November, 1908, in which Letter she not merely declines to take any action to free the Society from any taint of participation in this scandal, but even seeks to condone Mr. Leadbeater's offence, thereby reversing her own previous judgment of the matter; and further announces her willingness to welcome Mr. Leadbeater back to membership in the Society without his repudiation of the teaching above referred to:
AND WHEREAS the General Council of the Society at its Annual Meeting at Adyar, in December, 1908, also refused to accept the appeal of the British Section, and not merely declined to take any action to repudiate, in the name of the Society, Mr. Leadbeater's teaching of self-abuse, or to prevent the identification of this teaching with the Society, but, on the contrary, has taken the very course which will ensure the opposite effect, and has passed a Resolution stating that, "there is no reason why Mr. C.W.Leadbeater should not return, if he wishes, to his place in the Society"; and has thereby reversed the wise judgment and action of the late President-Founder, Colonel H.S.Olcott:
AND WHEREAS this disastrous policy on the part of the President and General Council must inevitably result - and indeed, has already resulted - in the gravest public scandal, and in the association of Mr. Leadbeater's degrading teachings with the Society itself:
NOW, THEREFORE, IT IS HEREBY AFFIRMED AND RESOLVED -
(1) That we, the undersigned Members of the Theosophical society, desire to express, in the first instance, our deep regret that the President and General Council should not merely have refused to take any steps to free the Society from this grave scandal but should actually have taken the most effective means to identity it therewith.
(2) That we hereby desire to protest in the strongest possible manner against this disastrous policy, to which the Society has now been committed by its highest officials.
(3) That we hereby place on record our deep abhorrence of the gross sexual practice into which Mr. Leadbeater - on his own confession - was guilty of initiating certain boys.
(4) That we desire to express our conviction that the question at issue is simply one of morality, but that it has been largely obscured by a false glamour of so-called "occultism" and a specious appeal to so-called "liberty of opinion."
(5) That we do not feel called upon to judge Mr. Leadbeater's motives, nor do we condemn any who, in this matter, have honestly thought that his further identification with the Society was desirable; but we protest most strongly against the good name of the Society being sacrificed for any one individual.
Three hundred and twenty-four members have signed the above Resolutions. Of these members 206 have severed their connection with the Society, or have notified their intention of doing so, and have signified their willingness to have their names published in connection with this Protest.
Fifty-three other members have also signed the Protest and resigned, but do not wish to have their names published.
Thirty-five members have signed, but have not yet decided as to resignation.
Thirty members have signed, but have signified their intention of remaining in the Society, in the new International Section, or otherwise.
There have also been a very large number of resignations by members who have not signed this Protest, but who signed the first Resolutions sent out in November last with the Reply of the Protest Committee to the President's Letter.
The following members of the Executive Committee have resigned, and have left the Society:
The following Lodges have severed their connection with the Society.
The following is an analysis of the signatures, and the names of the 206 members above referred to, who have resigned and consented to the publication of their names.
ADELPHI LODGE:- J.M.Watkins (President). - Mrs. Watkins. - H.J.Dyer. - Miss Saunders. - C.W.C.Barlow. - Miss Howsin. - A.F.Winckley.
BLAVATSKY LODGE: - G.R.S.Mead (President). - Mrs. Mead. - Miss Eardley-Wilmot. - C.J.Barker. - Mrs. Barker. - Miss Tisdale. - Miss M.Wolff van Sandau. - Mrs. E.Wood. - J.F.Tilly. - Mrs. Tilly. - Miss J.R.Willats. - Mrs. A.M.A. Rice. - G.A.Simmons. - Mrs. William Sharp. - J.R.Foster. - H.Burrows. - F.G.Castaneda. - V.C.Turnbull. - Miss S.B.Wilson. - Mrs. C.A.Baynes. - Miss A.Claxton. - Mrs. M.M.W.Kidston. - W.Theobald. - Mrs. Theobald. - Miss M.Theobald. - Miss A.G.Theobald. - B.G.Theobald. - Mrs. F.E.Marshall. - Miss C.E.Marshall. - W.T.Harrison. - Miss L.A.Peile. - Miss G.Linde. - P.Hookham. - Miss L.Henderson. - Mrs. C.Macrae. - Dr. C.G.Currie. - Mrs. Currie. - J.S.Brown. - Mrs. S.F.Dudley. - Miss S.E.Hall. - H.A.Colvile. - Miss A.L.Gaimes. - J.A.Kinnison. - Mrs. Kinnison. - H.R.Hogg. - Mrs. Hogg. - Mrs. Hoffmeister. - Mrs. M.H.Malan. - Miss T.J.O'Connell. - W.F.Kirby. - J.R.Acton. - Mrs. A.K.Ledger. - Miss J.Spence. - Miss E.M.L.Scull. - Col. R.H.Forman. - A.M.Glass. - H.E.Colbett. - H.L.Shindler. - Thirty-five other signatories.
BATH LODGE:- F.Bligh Bond.
BATTERSEA LODGE:- A.P.Cattanach (President). - Mrs. Cattanach. - Miss H.R.Gutteridge. - W.Hewett. - One other signatory.
BOURNEMOUTH LODGE:- E. H. Bellairs.
BRIGHTON LODGE:- Dr. Alfred King (President). - Mrs. King. - J.F.Bigwood. - Four other signatories.
BRISTOL LODGE: - Miss G.S.Platnauer (President). - T.R.Freeman. - Miss F.K.Simmons. - S.W.Smith. - F.H.Stevens. - Mrs. A.K.Furnival. - Miss A.Dobbie. - F.H.Palmer. - One other signatory.
DIDSBURY LODGE:- E.E.Marsden (President). - Mrs. Marsden. - Mrs. E.E.Worthington. - H.Levy. - Miss H.D.Mackie. - Miss F.Jackson. - F.H.Clarke. - Mrs. Clarke. - Mrs. E.Harrold. - W.G.Wilson. - Mrs. Wilson. - Miss K.Whitehead. - Miss E.Booth. - Miss L.Peck. - C.Midgley. - Mrs. Midgley. -Five other signatories.
DUBLIN LODGE:- Mrs. M.E.Greene. - Mrs. G.E.Jones. - Mrs. L.Robinson. - Miss. M.Kelly. - Mrs. Kelly. - J. Tingly. - Mrs. E.S.Thornton.
EDINBURGH LODGE:- Mrs. Drummond (President). - Miss E.Drummond. - Mrs. M.H.Darlison. - Mrs. L.Handyside. - Mrs. M.H.Hebdens. - J.J.Bell. - Miss Edith Grant. - Miss Cochrane. - Miss I. Cochrane. - Mrs. Frater. - Miss Raeburn. - Miss E.C.Raeburn. - Mrs. Cragie Prophit. - Miss White. - Five other signatories.
EXETER LODGE:- Lt.Col. L.A.D.Montague (President). - Miss Wheaton. - Miss Z.L.Montague. - Miss F.Lake. - Miss E.E.Snodgrass. - Five other signatories.
GLASGOW LODGE:- R.H.Andrews. - Miss M.S.Ferguson.
H.P.B. LODGE:- H.E.Parry. - Miss C.E.Woods. - Mrs. C.F.Buller. - S.A.Mappin. - Mrs. Mappin. - Mrs. C.B.Fernandez. - Five other signatories.
HARROGATE LODGE:- Mrs. B.Ringrose. - Miss A. B. Woodhead.
HULL LODGE:- H.E.Nichol (President). - Mrs. Nichol. -J.W.Burton. - Mrs. E.B.Burton. - Miss C.A.Eccles.
LONDON LODGE:- Lady Raines. - Mrs. B.H.M.Riddle. - Mrs. E.R.Cull. - Mrs. C.G.R.Smith. - Mrs. K.Baldwin. - Mrs. H.Huntly. - Mrs. N.Malan. - Mme. Gennadius. - C.B.Wheeler. - Mrs. J.M.S.Walker. - Mrs. V.B.Thompson. -Three other signatories.
LIVERPOOL LODGE:- Mrs. C.B.Avery. - Mrs. M.Fulton. - Mrs. L.M.Queen. - Miss M.Barber. - Miss B.M.Mylehreest. - Three other signatories.
LEEDS LODGE:- C.N.Goode. - Mrs. Goode. - A.W.Waddington.
MANCHESTER CITY LODGE:- J.Mayo. - Mrs. Hadfield. - Miss Hadfield. - Two other signatories.
MIDDLESBROUGH LODGE:- W.H.Thomas (President). - Miss M.E.Thomas. - Baker Hudson. - Mrs. M G.Macfadzean. - J.A.Jones. - One other signatory.
NORTH LONDON LODGE: - V. Lewis. - Mrs. E.C.V.Worley. - One other signatory.
SHEFFIELD LODGE:- C.E.Young (President). - R.Cheatle. - R.Pexton. - Mrs. Pexton. - J. Abey. - J.Wood. - One other signatory.
WEST LONDON LODGE:- Miss E.Ward (President). - Mrs. F.Ozanne. - Mrs. G.B.O'Donnell. - Miss Fortescue. - Mrs. A.Mallalue. - W.A.Carson. - Mrs. Carson. - Mrs. E.J.Beatty. - Two other signatories.
UNATTACHED:- Mme. de Steiger. - E. de M.Malan. - G.H.Popplestone. - I.L.F.Paynter. - Mrs. M.C.Brown. - Mrs. E.Kilburn. - O.Firth. - W.H.Bean. - Miss H.K.Burke. -Miss H.Bloxam. - I.H.Mitchell. - Mrs. Mitchell. - E.Melland. - Miss G.H.Minet. - Miss H.G.Micklethwait. - Miss A.M.Bostock. - W.Kingsland. - J.Dowall. - Mrs. J.Dowall. - Mrs. E.Schaub. - G.Graham. - Miss M.Scott-Kerr. - Eighteen other signatories.
BRUSSELS:- Seventeen signatories.
OTHER BRITISH LODGES:- Ten signatories. At the Caxton Hall Meeting above referred to, the Protest Committee were empowered to "receive, consider and report on any suggestion that may be made as to the best manner of keeping together those who feel compelled to withdraw from the Society."
No suggestions, however, have been received by the Committee; but the formation of a Society on the lines outlined by Mr. Mead at the above meeting is now an accomplished fact.
The name which was then proposed for this Society was, "The Mystical Research Society." This, however, has since been changed to "THE QUEST SOCIETY." Full particulars of this Organisation can be obtained from the Hon. Secretary, THE QUEST SOCIETY, 16, Selwood Place, Onslow Gardens, S.W.
A Conference of members and ex-members of the Theosophical Society, living in the North of England, was held at Manchester on January 19, 1909; at which Mr. G.R.S.Mead was also present. The Conference resolved to form Local Societies on lines more or less similar to those of the Quest Society; and also to federate such Societies when constituted.
Mr. W.H.Thomas, The Ness, Linthorpe, Middlesbrough, consented to act as Hon. Secretary, pro tem., and will be pleased to supply all particulars to intending members.
It may also be mentioned that in most cases where Lodges have resigned their Charters they are continuing their work under some different name.
The work of the Protest Committee is now practically finished. The subscriptions which they received have been most generous and ample, and a small balance is still in hand. It is proposed to retain this for a short time, in view of any eventuality arising which might necessitate its being called upon; but in due course a balance sheet will be sent to each subscriber, and suggestions will be asked for as to how the balance should he disposed of.
May 1, 1909.