This Convention declares its abhorrence of such practice [masturbation], and, in view of the incalculable harm to Theosophy and of the disgrace which this teaching must inevitably bring upon the Society earnestly calls upon all its members, especially the President and members of the General Council, to unite in putting an end to the present scandalous state of affairs, so that the repudiation by the Society of this pernicious teaching may be unequivocal and final.
Moved by Herbert Burrows; seconded by G.R.S. Mead; supported by A. P. Sinnett C.J. Barker, J.S. Brown, Dr. C.G. Currie, H. R. Hogg, B. Keightley, W. Kingsland, W. Scott-Elliot, W. Theobald, B. G. Theobald, L. Wallace, C. B. Wheeler, H.L. Shindler, A.P. Cattanach, Dr. A. King, Baker Hudson, W.H. Thomas, A.B. Green, J.M. Watkins, E.E. Marsden, H.E. Nichol, by the delegates of the London and Blavatsky Lodges, and by many others.
Immediately after the vote was taken Miss Dupuis, of the H.P.B. Lodge, read the following declaration, in which the majority of the representatives who had declined to vote joined by standing with her:
We cannot vote for this amendment as it is worded. We will not vote against it as it involves so much. We stand and hereby proclaim that we utterly condemn the practices alluded to, but refuse to condemn any individual.
Reply to the President's Letter.
This serious and earnest appeal to safeguard the good name of the Society and to assist in preserving Theosophy from harm, the President now rejects with all her strength. Mrs. Besant's reply takes the form of special pleading in defence of Mr. Leadbeater; she withdraws her former unequivocal condemnation of his teaching and substitutes for it equivocal phrases; humbly apologises to him; and finally invites the Society to vote for Mr. Leadbeater's triumphant reinstatement without further guarantee.
The change in Mrs. Besant's attitude is amazing, but still more astonishing is her forgetfulness of her emphatic pledges given to the Society at the time of her election to the Presidency.