In my previous post, Chopra mentioned how influenced he was by Jiddu Krishnamurti, who was quite an interesting character in early 20th century philosophy and religious circles. As an adolescent in India he was “discovered” by Annie Besant of the Theosophical Society who was searching for the group‘s “world teacher.”
While Krishnamurti’s greatest thought and influence extended far beyond the limits of the Theosophical Society, the society itself was pretty amazing for the time period that it influenced:
(From Wikipedia) “The Theosophical Society was officially formed in New York City, United States, on 17 November 1875 by Helena Petrovna Blavatsky, Colonel Henry Steel Olcott, William Quan Judge, and others. It was self-described as ‘an unsectarian body of seekers after Truth, who endeavour to promote Brotherhood and strive to serve humanity.’ Olcott was its first president, and remained president until his demise in 1907. In the early months of 1875, Olcott and Judge had come to realize that, if Blavatsky was a spiritualist, she was no ordinary one. The society’s initial objective was the ‘study and elucidation of Occultism, the Cabala etc.’ After a few years Olcott and Blavatsky moved to India and established the International Headquarters at Adyar, in Madras (now Chennai). They were also interested in studying Eastern religions, and these were included in the Society’s agenda. After several iterations the Society’s objectives evolved to be:
- To form a nucleus of the universal brotherhood of humanity without distinction of race, creed, sex, caste, or colour.
- To encourage the study of comparative religion, philosophy, and science.
- To investigate the unexplained laws of nature and the powers latent in man. …”
So back when Krishnamurti was still in his teens, these folks from this theology-philosophy cult adopted him to represent their beliefs and teachings about spirituality and life in general; and to share those thoughts—including his direct-connection abilities to Higher Truth—with the rest of the world. They helped him further cultivate his existing knowledgebase, and encouraged him to reach deeper to decipher the meaning and purpose to life; which he definitely did, and much of what he later wrote about or spoke about, was first encouraged and supported by the Theosophical Society itself.
Now my personal connection to all of this is as strange as it gets.
My grandmother grew up in a little town best known from Walt Disney’s early childhood: Marceline, Missouri. And evidently Walt wasn’t the only artist or illustrator near that tiny town in the early 20th century. Evidently an A. Theo Bondy also resided near my grandmother who was named Alice, or often called “Allie.” And she must have been early friends with Mr. Bondy because in 1949 he sent her a Christmas postcard that I found many years after my grandmother’s death. (See the front and back for details)
That little postcard that I found in my grandmother’s hidden-treasure drawer, began my quest to find out more about the Theosophical Society, and during that research, I discovered Jiddu Krishnamurti for myself and read his extensive philosophical contributions at that time.
So there you go. How strange is life itself?
This must be like one of those ‘Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon’ things.