There are events common to human life, events small and inconsiderable in seeming, which, in their ulterior development and under the ripening hand of time, may affect the thought of the world, or turn a nation’s history. To leave a mark on the political or social life of a great country is, no doubt, the larger deed in the view o f the man of action. But the thinker, more or less a seer by his use of the clairvoyance of thought, the thinker knows well that thought lies back of all action; that to give to that mightiest of tides a fresh impulse, a new direction, is to have impressed an individual mark upon life in its fluidic entirety; is to have propelled the Oversoul, bu the energic power of the personified spark, into combinations and inter-correlations whose field of practically boundless, whose unspanned area embraces Time and Space.
One such embryonic event occurred at Dublin, Ireland, on April 13th, 1851, when Alice Mary Quan, wife of Frederick H. Judge, gave birth to a son. The parents were both Irish, the mother—a sweet and pathetic young figure, as now viewed by us—dying in early life on the birth of her seventh child. That other child, whose birth-date has just been given, was named William Quan Judge and was brought up in Dublin until his thirteenth year, when the bereaved father decided to emigrate with his motherless children to the United States, there to share in the wider activities and opportunities of American life. The impulse of the younger nation works swiftly in the Irish blood, and passage was promptly taken in the Inman Line steamship City of Limerick, which arrived at New York on July 14th, 1864.
Of the first thirteen years of the life of William Q. Judge we know but little, and may hence assume them to have been of that happy order which carves no deep, distinctive lines upon the memory. Life has its years of rarer vintage, which leave an aroma as of sunlight in the heart. The years of childhood should be such as these, that mature life may still feel them as an afterglow. So it is in this instance; the lad was a happy one, growing, playing, studying, waiting for his future life and destiny. But he was not only waiting—as we all must—for his destiny; he was also preparing for that watchful Argus, as we all should do. For destiny comes to each and all, and we must either tamely accept her, or make ourselves, in her despite, using her opposition to develop our power of withstanding and overcoming. We cannot fashion the present fate, for she is the outcome of ourselves. We have earlier made her what she now is, and she stands before us, wearing our own unrecognized likeness—if we only knew it, at once a verdict and an opportunity. This the lad seems to have discerned in some dim way of his own, after a memorable illness of his seventh year, an illness supposed to be mortal. The little sufferer was moribund, was thought to be quite gone; but amid the natural outburst of grief it was suddenly found that the supposed dead breathed again, and that all was “well with the child.” That his was true in some mysterious but very real fashion the sequence appears to show. During convalescence the boy evinced aptitude and knowledge which he had never before displayed, exciting wonder as to when and how he had learned these things, these rudiments of art and or literature. He seemed the same, yet other; had to be studied anew by his people, and from his recovery in his eighth year we find him interested in religion, magic Rosicrusianism, and deeply absorbed in the Book of Revelations of the Christian Bible, trying to settle its meaning. He also devoured the contents of all the books he could lay hold of relating to mesmerism, character-reading, phrenology and so on, while no one knew when he had so much as acquired the art of reading at all. The emigration to America did not interrupt these interests, but broadened his thought and experience as the era of definite work and training came on. Perhaps the magnetic link so abruptly renewed in his illness was never fully vitalized in the physical sense, for the lad never acquired a strong physique. Without being sickly he was frail, but indomitable and persevering beyond his years. An anecdote of his boyhood illustrated these traits. He was with other boys upon the bank of a stream. His companions swam to an island a little way off from the bank, from which vintage ground they jeered and mocked their younger comrade, who could not swim. The small William’s heart rose hot within him; he plunged into the water, resolved to get to that island or perish. When out of his depth he let himself sink, touched bottom, ran a few steps on the river’s bed, rose, of course, kicked, sank, took a step and another, repeated the process, and thus struggling, rising, sinking, scrambling, and, above all, holding his breath, he actually reached the margin of the island, to be drawn out, half unconscious, by his astonished play-fellows. Nothing could be more characteristic of the Mr. Judge of to-day, as he is known to his associated, among whom it is a common saying, “Judge would walk over red-hot ploughshares from here to India to do his duty.”
The elder Judge, with his children, lived for a short time at the old Merchant’s Hotel in Cortlandt Street, New York; then in Tenth Street, and afterwards in the city of Brooklyn. William soon began work at a desk in New York, a clerkship having come his way, and his family being one of those whose members must all be self-supporting at a comparatively early age. This continued until he was induced to enter a law office as the clerk of Geo. P. Andrews, who for a long time has since been judge of the Supreme Court of New York. There he also studied law, living with his father, who died not long after. On coming of age he was naturalized a citizen of the United Stated in April, 1872. In May of that year he was admitted to the bar of New York, practicing law in that city steadily for many years, and only relinquishing this work and the excellent position he had made for himself in the strange land of his adoption some four years ago, when the rapid growth of the Theosophical Society demanded at once all his time and a fresh sacrifice. His conspicuous traits as a lawyer, in the practice of commercial law, of which he made a specialty, were his thoroughness and his inflexible persistence, which won the respect of employers and clients alike. In 1874 he left he family roof-tree to marry Ella M. Smith, of Brooklyn, in which city the couple continued to live until 1893, when they crossed the great bridge definitely to reside in New York city and to be nearer to the field of Mr. Judge’s work at the T.S. Headquarters there.
That marriage gave no new complexion to the mind of the young man, and did not divert its course, is seen by his beginning the study of modern spiritualism in the scant leisure moments of that same year.
The period was a fateful one. The last quarter of the century was about to strike, and the specialized effort made in every century by the guardians of the Wisdom-religion was now due. At Rochester, New York, and at other points had occurred that first outbreak of raps and mysterious knocking which were later to resound round the world. The newspapers were full of the new manifestations; spiritualists were rejoicing and anti-spiritualists were denouncing; the air was full of sound and fury, and H.P. Blavatsky, taking advantage of the storm of public attention, was rising upon a whirlwind, seeking a point of vantage from which to guide events.
Already she had met, at the Eddy house, her future colleague in the person of Col. H.S. Olcott. Yet the triad was not complete. Each age has known a triumvirate of visible agents of the mysterious Lodge; where was the third point of the triangle? At that moment in a bookshop, very probably, for he felt the current impulse of the tidal wave of the nineteenth century, and being a cautious and a quiet young man, did not adventure forth, but bought a book for his information. That book was People from the Other World, by H.S. Olcott.
Its perusal interested Mr. Judge, who determined to investigate a bit for himself. He wrote to Colonel Olcott, asking for the address of a good medium. Colonel Olcott replied that he did not then know the address of any medium, but that he had a friend, Madame Blavatsky, who asked him to request Mr. Judge to call upon her.
The call was paid at 40, Irving Place, New York, and H.P. Blavatsky then for the first time in this life met her most devoted pupil and friend face to face, in a relationship which continued unbroken and justified that which H.P. Blavatsky herself wrote of it—“till death and after.” Storms there were, no doubt, as well as fullest sunshine; for the pupil was a powerful mind and the teacher was the sphinx of her era, so that intellectual tussels followed as a natural sequence; not a doubt or a fear concealed when these arose, as arise they must when the hour of occult teaching and trial dawns. That H.P.B. honored this openness is evidenced by her long letters—there are some of forty-eight pages—in which many a puzzle is explained with a profound affection. There has been a recent attempt to make capital out of some such passing episode, turning it into a prolonged enmity on the part of Mr. Judge toward H.P.B., which not only show how complete was the final understanding, but which also show through what arts, and of what individual, the temporary want of comprehension arose. It is indeed most instructive to find that one person, who, like the worm in the bud, acted as the hidden canker in two crises in India, as H.P.B. (and an official of the “Indian Section”) bluntly shows, also played the same part in the recent troubles, now so healthily ended. Disappearing, now emerging, now again in stealthy hiding, never did leopard cling close to its spots; never was paw more alert to caress, to strike, to propel its victims here and there; never was karmic line more plainly marked out of karmic tool more mercifully—yet plainly—exposed by H.P.B. But in this instance it met with complete failure; it was as vain as will be every other attempt to separate that teacher and that pupil. Even the outside public has grasped that fact by now, turning scorn upon it, unable to realize its hidden beauty. The final verdict of H.P.B. upon the relation is an ample one. It extends of the ten years previous to her departure from our midst and is replete with a noble gratitude constantly poured forth. The splendid friendship went on its rejoicing way, a thing of life immortal, destined to pass beyond the confined of the tomb, as beyond many a mortal life, and to look with large compassion upon the self-substitition, the weighing and counting,t he trimming and cheking and paring with which smaller souls, hemmed in “the mirror-lined prison of self-consciousness,” adjust their balances and re-measure their gratitude when gifts have ceased to flow visibly toward them, swallowed up by the silence of the inner world. In our commercial era, there is a solemn right known at each season’s close, a rite performed with bated breath by the money-worshipper and called “Taking Stock.” All errors of financial judgment are then corrected in the light of self-gain and self-loss. Can we feel surprised that souls not yet born into the free ether should thus readjust any instinctive generosity of theirs towards the dead which might tend to imperil their worldly standing? Not so; we had hooped other things, yet cannot feel surprise,but only a larger tolerance of the common human nature, which is capable, further on in evolution of an instinctive trust, more swift than the lightning, more enduring than the everlasting hills. To have given proof of such a trust,in the teeth of all the lying testimony of material life, is to have done the world a lasting service, had no more than this been done by Mr. Judge.
After this first meeting, Mr. Judge became deeply interested in the work and teachings of Madame Blavatsky. He spend much of his time in her rooms, a witness of many of her wonderful phenomena, and ultimately, as we now know, became her disciple in the deeper arcana of Theosophy. Very soon after the acquaintance began, Mr. Judge was one of a gathering of people at the rooms of Madame Blavatsky, when she told him to ask Colonel Olcott, who was then on the other side of the room, “to found a Society.” Mr. Judge did as he was requested, then called the gathering to order, assumed the chairmanship, and nominated Colonel Olcott as permanent chairman, on which he was duly elected. Colonel Olcott then took the chair, and nominated Mr. Judge as secretary. Mr. Judge was elected, and this was the beginning of the Theosophical Society. How it continued and how it grew are matters of common knowledge. When Madame Blavatsky and Colonel Olctott sailed for India with their roving commision, they left Mr. Judge to sustain, as best he could, the parent body, the three being, as H.P.B. subsequently wrote, the only founders who remained true to the Cause and the Society.
Let us realize the situation. A young man, twenty-three years of age, newly married, poor, and at the time obscure, not of robust health, soon to have the future of an infant child added to his responsibilities, Mr. Judge was left virtually in charge of the interested of the Theosophical Society at its more important post, the land of which H.P.B. and himself were naturalized citizens, and for which each had given up all rights in other countries; the land where the century’s effort was duly well inaugurated; the land which was by cyclic law predestined to bear the new race, a race grander, said H.P. Blavatsky, than any ever yet born, a race not purely local, but wholly composite as to the physical and nervous bodies, the bearers of universal influences.
It was a position in which the young lawyer seemed quite over-weighted, but he did all that he could. Much or little it might have been on the external plane, and at that time. We cannot say. He was a disciple under trial, soon to be accepted and recognized, but already, so far as this life goes, a neophyte, one of a hand of who have taken the vow of interior poverty, and whose unseen and unrecorded work is regarded as being of far more importance than exterior, visible work. The main current of such lives runs underground. Already H.P. Blavatsky had written and said that he had been a part of herself and of the Great Lodge “for aeons past” (her exact words), and that he was one of those tried Egos who have reincarnated several times immediately after death; assisted to do so, and without devachanic rest, in order to continue his Lodge work. It is a matter of record that, when the seven year’ probation of this life were over, the Master best known in connection with the T.S. sent to Mr. Judge, through H.P.B., His photograph, inscribed upon he back “to my colleague,” with a cryptogram and signature; and, a little later, a letter of thanks and advice, delivered to Mr. Judge in Paris by H.P.B. A message sent to him through H.P.B. in writing from the Lodge at about this time ends by saying: “Those who do all that they can and the best they know how do enough for us.” Hence, through recent mushroom criticisms of that period of Mr. Judge’s work have spring up like poisonous fungi, it would appear that H.P. Blavatsky, and Those she served, passed quite other judgment upon it, as abundant evidence shows.
In this period, when the young man was left thus alone, there were, all about him, the ranks of materiality densely set; Science had just recorded some of her most brilliant verdicts against Religion; Religion then pressed, was fierce in denunciation of Spiritualism and Theosophy, classing them with Agnosticism and Atheism. Persons who had joined the T.S. in the hope of learning more of the unseen forced of Nature, fell away upon the departure of Madame Blavatsky for India, most of them being Spiritualists, many of them still active and prominent workers along spiritualistic lines. The parent body dwindled to a mere handful of earnest souls, but it kept alive; its records were kept up by the unflagging zeal of Mr. Judge—the secretary, as will be remembered—and the sustained devotion of General Abder Doubleday. This gentleman had been elected President of the T.S. on Colonel Olcott’s departure for India. He was an officer of the regular army, and had served with conspicuous gallantry on the northern side during the war for the Union and was a man honored by the entire nation, an enthusiastic Theosophist and esotericist until his death about four years ago. He had a very great friendship and respect for the younger man who later outranked him in Theosophy, and was a representative of the type of men whom Mr. Judge then and later gathered about him, and who, without exception, are still his firm supporters and friends. This refers, be it understood, to men of the same standing as General Doubleday.
In the Convention of 1895, some ninety persons out of the four thousand of thereabouts, were found, after six months’ active work and search, to sign a species of memorial unfavorable to Mr. Judge. Not half a dozen of these were active workers. With a single exception they could not be said to be persons of any marked standing. They had, as against them in judgment, men and women whose names are as well known in foreign cities, or upon the great foreign exchanges, or through the United States, as they are known in the cities of their residence. Commenting upon this fact, a part of sch men were lunching in New York, just after the Convention, 1895, and said to an English guest: “Here are we, whose word is our bond in the communities where we live and beyond them; we can raise thousands of dollars upon our mere word at half an hour’s notice, and that financial test is the great test of the present time. We know Judge intimately; we have seen him almost daily for years. He can have anything he wants of us, and he wants nothing for himself. We know his character and daily life; the whole community knows it, and we know these charges are untrue. A man is known where he lives as he is known nowhere else. We are by no means fools, as our business contemporaries can tell you, and we stand by Judge to a man.”
But at the period with which we are now engaged, Mr. Judge’s industry had not as yet discovered and indoctrinated these and other Theosophists. As yet he stood, as we saw, the centre of a small group of students. We have a glimpse of him calling a meeting of the Aryan T.S., finding no one present, opening the meeting, reading the minuted and the customary chapter of The Bhagavad Gita with which the Aryan Lodge opened and still opens every meeting, just as if he were not the only person present, and so he did whenever this occurred. Will, such as this, makes its way through every obstacle.
Members began to come in, though slowly. Other Lodges formed; there was no very great activity, but the link was kept unbroken and correspondence with H.P. Blavatsky was brisk. Amid such external work as he could find to do, the young disciple still kept up the inner search. It was a period of darkness and silence, the period of probation. Through such a period had passed H.P. Blavatsky, and of it she said and wrote: “For long years I thought Master had quite deserted me.” She had seen the Master in London, in the physical body, following, as if an official, in the suite of some Indian prince, and in an interview which was given to her in Hyde Park, the Master told her she might come to Thibet, but left her to find her way thither unaided, and also to discover where she should go when she reached that country, all of which she accomplished after several failures and some years of search and apparent desertion. Of such a period the author of Light on the Path wrote in some explanatory notes in Lucifer, that though the Master might really be near the neophyte and might extend to him the utmost comfort which one soul could give to another, yet the neophyte would feel himself utterly alone, and that not one has passed through this period of suffering without bitter complaint. Complaint was wrung from this strong soul, whose portrait is feebly attempted here, in letters of sacred privacy to his teacher, H.P. Blavatsky, and to Damodar, his fellow-disciple. After the death of H.P.B., and the departure of Damodar for Thibet, these very private letters were taken without the consent of either the recipients or the writer, and were given in part to the world in an attempt to show that Mr. Judge lied in claiming an uninteruppted connection with the Masters, because of his despair at the period of seeming silence. It is difficult to believe that professors of philanthropy could be found, thus to rifle the correspondence of the dead and the absent, and to publish letters written in that relationship of pupil and teacher, which these very investigators professed to revere.
We have it on the authority of a much respected member of the Auditing Committee, called to verify the correctness of the prosecutor’s quotations from these letters in the co-called brief against Mr. Judge, that several of that committee asked to be spared the reading of letters so painful to hear. But the prosecutor insisted!
The startled mind protests at such sad misdirection of noble energies and vigorous purpose, and at an house, too, when all the forces that make for materiality, as against evolution, press hard upon our little band; when every energy of every soul is needed, is drawn upon, to the last ounce of life-force. Thus to assail the hardest worker, the greatest sufferer! Ah, yes! But also he is our strongest soul. He is the one most capable of forgiveness; least capable of retaliation. It was perhaps his highest karmic office, as a helper, to undergo the trial, to stop the baleful vibration more quickly than any other could stop it by his final acceptance and pardon of injury, and to turn the Society strongly away from the grievous issue into new fields of work. Let us turn, with him, from this outrage upon the dead and the living. The shadow portrayed in those letters lifted, the disciple came to know even as he was known, and in 1888 we find H.P.B. writing in certain official documents of him as being then “a chela of thirteen years’ standing, with trust reposed in him,” and as “the chief and sole agent of the Dzyan (Lodge) in America.” (This, it will be remembered, is the name by which that which is called “The Lodge” is known in Thibet.) He had been in South America, where H.P.B. said there was a branch of the Great Lodge, and in that country he contracted the dreadful Chagrès fever, which racks the system of its victims as by fire, often carrying them off in the twentieth year. Mr. Judge has always been a great sufferer from this torturing disease—though he never stayed his work for it—and he is now passing through the twentieth year. To Europe he went too, meeting H.P.B. in Paris and spending some little time with her there, and thence to India, where he arrived just after the outbreak of the Coulomb scandal. After a brief stay there, Mr. Judge returned to America and the duties of his professional and theosophical life. The moment was critical, a turning-point. As so often happens, the scandal attracted public attention to the Theosophical Society and letters of inquiry began to pour in. Mr. Judge seized the tide at the flood and carried the bark of the Society on to wider fortunes. The press took the matter up, reporters called, inquirers became members, the community became aware of the quiet, forceful worker in its midst. His method and his matter own the respect of those who heard him; the press began to accept his articles on Theosophy, and later on those or others; from scoffing and jeering and being unable to admit a theosophical item without insulting comment, it passed to giving these like other items of news. Later still, the personal influence of Mr. Judge induced the editors of a great journal to retract a libel which they had published against the T.S. and Madame Blavatsky, and a libel suit instituted against that journal by Mr. Judge was withdrawn. So it continued until the present day, when Mr. Judge can always count upon a hearing from the metropolitan press. Meanwhile his work had begun to tell in other directions. The T.S. took on a third form, and passed out of the Board of Control stage into that of the late American Section, and the fourth stage was reached at Boston Convention, 1895, when the original parent body and branches voted its autonomy and became the Theosophical Society in America by an overwhelming majority. In each instance the Society outgrew the old form and reincarnated anew, in conditions more favorable to the work. Members of influence and standing began to come in, especially in Mr. Judge’s lodge, the original parent body, the Aryan Lodge of New York, and their activity and devotion were stimulated by his own. He instituted The Path magazine himself; meeting its deficits and carrying it on unaided; he wrote unceasingly, books, articles, letters. He spoke whenever opportunity arose. Every spare moment was given to Theosophy, and taken from his meals and his rest. Finally, when the New York Headquarters were bought, and when the work had increased to large proportions, Mr. Judge relinquished his profession and gave his entire life and time to the Society. His health, always frail, continued to give way. A day free from pain was rare with him. Often he was in very real danger. But always he was scornful of every suffering, working when another man would have been prone, when his friends and doctors were shocked at his being about at all. As the T.S. grew, his working staff grew also, but he out-worked and out-tired them all. Dauntless, indomitable, he was ever inaugurating fresh plans of work. He sent timely aid and thought to India, Europe, to England especially, and it was always by his influence and at his request—of late years through his urgency—that America, never helped by Europe or by India, so largely contributed, both publicly and privately, to the work of the two sister Sections.
Bringing this portion of my sketch down to the present day, we have Mr. Judge President of the T.S. in America, having lost not more than five branches, inactive as a rule, and having issued several new charters and a number of new diplomas. The work is now more active than every before during the same period (the dead summer period) and new diplomas were going out steadily, while new lecturers have had to be sent into the field. We also have Mr. Judge as President of the new T.S. in Europe, composed of those European branches who have legitimized their connection with the parent body, and provided their own autonomy. During the twenty years a score of members has grown to thousands, primarily thorugh the zeal and ability of the man who was able to inspire a similar devotion in others; the man whom the Master, writing to H.P. Blavatsky from Thibet and by the post in 1889, called, as she tell us in print and letter, “The Resuscitator of Theosophy.”
We have hitherto considered Mr. Judge in relation to this profession and to the Theosophical Society. There are other relations, which, of necessity, enter into the life of a man before it is bounded to our view.
The family life of Mr. Judge is restricted by reason of the smallness of its numbers. Mrs. Judge is at present, as is almost always the case, with her husband, who has at last been obliged to seek a milder climate and some degree of rest. His sisters are ladies of talent and culture, devoted to him in the fullest sense of the word. There is also a brother, Mr. Frederick Judge, resident in America. This comprises all the family of William Q. Judge. His only child, a little girl of great charm and promise, died very early, and the sad even graved deeper lines in the heart of the father than is generally known. Friends of Mr. Judge are often struck with the great attraction which he has for children, who gather about him uninvited. If he sketches on the deck of a steamer the children sidle up, coming nearer and nearer, until they are leaning against him or perching wherever a resting-place can be had, often before he had seemed to notice their presence. The children of his friends always give him joyous welcome, and not infrequently he is dragged to the floor, the common playground, amid their toys. A child in the company where he is, is sure to find the haven of his arms at last, and nestles there while the metaphysical discussion goes on above its curls. But however animated the argument, you will not find that small form, so gently cradled, to be ever so little disturbed. A friend who was once walking with Mr. Judge in the streets of New York at eventide tells the following story.
It was a summer evening, the electric lamps were just lit, and a very beautiful little child, some three years old, had been carried out of the door of a hotel to get a breath of fresh air. Passers by, on the sidewalk, an done or two who knew the child, had stopped to speak to her, attracted by her beauty and merry chatter, just as Mr. Judge and his friend drew near. The little beauty would have none of her admirers; she turned this way and that, pouting and embarrassed, flung herself about in the nurse’s arms, and finally, as the knot of people drew nearer, gave a piercing scream. At this moment she caught sight of the unknown Mr. Judge, over her nurse’s shoulder. Struggling down to the ground and fleeing for protection, the little white form flashed past, and running to Mr. Judge held up imploring arms and tear-bedewed face, crying: “Take! take! take!” As he stooped and lifted the wee elf her tears gave place to smiles; she laughed, and pressed her cheek to his, her arms passed round his neck and gripped, and for a few moments the nurse’s persuasion “to leave the strange gentleman” was quite unavailing, so closely did the waif cling to her refuge. But the witnessing friend turned his eyes away from the look on Mr. Judge’s face, and between them fell a silence as they walked on, the child restored, the arms she had instinctively sought once more empty, and always bereaved.
Theosophy teaches us that men are thinkers, that the real man within is the mind. So in dealing with a man we must closely consider that mind. The mind of Mr. Judge has a very pronounced duality. It is immensely practical and also profoundly mystical. As a man of business he is successful; it was once said of him by a wealthy merchant that he was a man who could have fold anything he undertook to sell. His practical gift has its most brilliant exposition in his power of organization. He is indeed a master-builder, and to this faculty the T.S. in America owes its strength and its growth. He is far-seeing, prompt and resourceful in emergency, never deterred by expediency or mere public opinion, or by any consideration of a personal nature, from carrying out that which he has resolved to do. He fears nothing, except his own conscience. When plans of work as under consideration, he consults all the principle workers and members living in the districts for which the plan is proposed. He collates the opinions of all and is guided by those which are of worth, and thus, like an able general, he never moves far from his base of supplies, but carries his support with him. It has of late become a habit among some persons to say that Mr. Judge hoodwinks and rules the Americans. Facts should give them pause. It is manifestly difficult to rule some thousands of persons, many of whom are far better off and more highly placed in a worldly sense than yourself. Among American men and women the thing would be an absurdity, for independence of mind is a national habit, an instinct as well as a custom, and it is carried to a far greater degree than we find it in England. The union of States is built up upon it, and is welded together by it, a unity in diversity, and independence is the main fault of every American-born child. It is precisely because Mr. Judge is a born leader and consults those whose local knowledge of aptitude is greater than his own, that he has the confidence of his fellow-members. Whatever is done, the mass knows that the workers have been consulted and have agreed. It is to be remembered that Mr. Judge has never been paid for his services, but has always been a contributor, liberal beyond his means, in order to get this fact of his reliance upon counsel into proper focus.
But as a mystic, Mr. Judge has another office, simple yet profound, rarely visible on the surface yet luminous. In the years 1887-88 he wrote, by the order of the Master, and to two friends who are now husband and wife, a series of letters since published under the title, Letters that have Helped Me. It would be difficult to trace the lives in which these letters have been as a light to the soul. In them is found that gift which the occultist who has in any degree become must possess in rare perfection, the art of evolving souls. For only soul can call to soul and help it to struggle forth. Only soul can recognize soul under the manifold coverings of matter. Only soul can hear the deep cry of the crucified god within, bound to the cross and unable to pierce the dull mind and brain of the human brute, who at once houses the god and delivers him over to death. But the Brother, the mystic, has heard. He goes to the man; he looks in his eyes; he calls him Brother; he utters his secret name; and the man pauses, an he listens, and the light floods over him, and he turns his eyes inward to the hidden Christ, to the god-nature, and the song of the Great Self begins to be heard in the stead of the cry of anguish. And while the man, entranced, gazes at the inner light now so dim, but which shall wax so strong at his will, and while the hidden one begins to manifest more and more in the heart, the Brother, the mystic, the evolver whose magic has reunited the man and his soul, goes his way in thankfulness, and bears his light into still other lives that at it they might light their own and that his blazing heart may kindle theirs. For thus act the Bearers of the Flame, the Brethren of the burning Heart, from one generation to another. Such are the servants of Krishna. Such are the evolvers of soul. And those who have come into closer contact with that man of whom the Master wrote in 1997 through H.P.B., that “he of all chelas suffers most and asks or even expects the least,” those who have worked with true devotion and in the true spirit with William Q. Judge, whether near or far in the body, they know well the uplifting, widening force which flows through him, ripening the character, developing the higher nature and letting patience have her perfect work. But Mr. Judge has always set his face rigidly against every form of psychic practice and psychism, in public and private. His copy-press books show hundreds of letters against it; his fellow-members are unanimous in their testimony of his aversion, and only European members in whom he has discouraged it, and whose written instructions in psychism he has torn to pieced by his powerful analysis and ridicule, have ever ventured upon an accusation which his met by hearty merriment even from the outside American public. The powers of the soul are not found in its lower faculties, any more than a man’s power is found in his animal propensities, but only those who have felt the touch of the Bearer of the Power upon their inner life, can know the mystic flower that touch unfolds.
Working thus on varied planes, the life of William Q. Judge goes on its quiet way. Its depths lie hidden, but from them wells an irresistible force that stimulated to devotion, to self-denial, to unsparing, unceasing activity for the world. A friend to all men and women he is yet impersonal always; personal flattery or personal following he meets with impatience and soon sets the offender upon his own feet. To him, the ideal friend is one who teaches us to stand on our own base, to rely upon the inner self, and this is the part of friendship as he himself plays it. To the numbers who wrote him for advice in the late crisis he replied: “Work! work! work for Theosophy!” and a lady, being recently asked if she had not received psychic teachings from Mr. Judge replied: “I will tell you the kind of psychic teaching he gave me. It was this: ‘Cast no one out of your heart.‘” So we find him ever accepting all, as in the One Self, closing no door to anyone; leaving the way always open to all who may wish to return to him or to the work; excluding none who are in that work, whether friend or foe; offering hand to his adversaries, and ready to offer it again when it is rejected; conquering personal animosity by the sheer force of his character as he goes steadily on with that work from which it sought to remove him. Seeing in him our most constructive and more indefatigable worker, we can well understand that he was the towering mark against which every force subversive of evolution was hurled. To obliterate our trust in the “Resuscitator,” to dim his reputation and impede his building hand, was to enfeeble the work. To deprive the nineteenth century of that wreath of success which it alone has so painfully gathered leaf by leaf, the success of seeing the living wedge of the Theosophical Society driven home into the new cycle—was not such deprivation a thing to work for, when success would sound the death-knell of those materialistic forces whose great antagonist he was? So every power that makes for hell was lashed on. But the light shone steadily, and thousands in all part of the world turned to it for guidance, followed its leading, knew it true and faithful above all else, and he who has to-day more devoted friends than any other living man, has the assurance that the real Theosophical Society, shaking off the wanton hands that would tamper with its great principle of “forming a nucleus of Universal Brotherhood,” will pass into the new century as such a nucleus, thence on and on! Not an intellectual abstraction, bu a nucleus to inform and enkindle the life of every day, one to which every man and woman shall have contributed something of self-sacrifice and love. Not merely a brotherhood of Humanity, exclusive of the teeming universe of creatures and sentient things, but a brotherhood of the Whole, recognizing the spiritual identity of all being. For this he labors and already he has his reward. The nucleus of Universal Brotherhood exists to-day and cannot henceforward die.
Since the above memoir was written, the foreseen event has occurred. Our Brother and Leader, pausing for once in his work, has laid his body down.
He laid it down. Had the supreme will failed him?
There are those who know otherwise. They know that at the core of this apparent abandonment lay a last and greatest gift.
Since the summer of 1893, some will recognize this:
“Take yet more courage. We have not left you comfortless. The Lodge watches ever. A new day will dawn. But there is much darkness yet to traverse and Judge is in danger. You must watch, and stand, and stand and stand.”
The latter half of this message foreshadowed the storm and lightnings that assailed our course. The judicial charges against W.Q. Judge; the crisis of November 3rd, 1894; the death of William Q. Judge all followed. The three stands were made and “both Leaders seemed to leave us.” It remained to fulfil the first half of the message.
So, standing at the point where the new cycle intersects the old, we find a new day dawning, the Comforter at hand. The gates of heaven open to let a new Light through. There is an occult inheritance called The Mystery, and the undaunted souls of the just never pass to another plane of work without leaving an heir, for divine Nature is one; she knows nor pause nor gap.
The promises of the lion H.P.B. accomplish themselves. The Great Lodge has drawn nearer. Listen! you that have ears to hear. You will hear the music of its approach.
— Jasper Niemand