Many impossibilities have been at all times demanded by members of the Society from those who have by the misfortunes of Karma been put in the front row like ninepins to be knocked down by self-appointed critics. Very often H. P. Blavatsky, Col. Olcott, and others in official position have been requested to state why every member other than the questioner—or as well, perhaps—is not a saint; why it is that the enrollment of a person in our ranks did not at once alter the human nature which eighteen hundred years of un-civilization have produced; why the possession of our diploma does not immediately admit to the presence of those glorious Adepts who have occupied incarnations in striving to become real and active altruists; and so on with an immense number of other things as difficult and as presently impossible. In a former issue THE PATH related the experience of the office with the demands of ordinary correspondents, when an order for a book from India or a magazine from London was required to be filled in a week, although the mail to and from India usually takes thirty days each way for transit. But the unattainable and impossible are required most assuredly, and the opposite to fact stated in a note of which the following are the words:
Our organization [a local one] must first establish its own centre, even though the existence of any such center is persistently ignored by THE PATH and Mr. Judge. Mr. Judge sees only New York and Europe and India (later), but notwithstanding this visual incapacity there is a center in —— And much Theosophical activity that never gets mentioned goes on.
Quite so; “the visual incapacity” to see what is going on at a distance of a thousand miles from THE PATH office is not confined to the editor of that unfortunate magazine, especially when the members of that “centre” never say one word to the editor of THE PATH about what is going on. No doubt they work, and that very energetically, but unless they inform the editor, or unless he obtains the capital to permit the employment of a regular and intelligent reporter at every such centre, it is quite unlikely that the pages of this magazine will be able to record and to encourage their admirable activity. It is an impossibility that is asked and implied in the statement of our “visual incapacity” and “persistent ignoring” of that about which we never have information.
But it is very wide of the fact to say that we see only New York, India, and Europe. Our history shows our Conventions held year after year in Illinois, and the enormous correspondence of the office with every State in the Union indicates in some degree, we presume, an interest in all our work here. The Indian correspondence is very small, and the European the same; the news we print from England is generally obtained from sources outside the members; and nearly all that about the U.S. is culled from stray letters. California is an exception, as from there the members send the facts. But the above complaint is not the only one of the same kind, and these words are meant for every Branch.
If you wish THE PATH to give accounts of the various activities of Branches, you must send them to the office, or else wait the far distant day when our individual purse will allow us to pay for the news we desire. But please do not accuse us of ignoring your work if we never know what you are doing, for as yet we have none of us in THE PATH office developed the power to read thoughts and see actions across hundreds of miles of our country; we are still compelled to rely very much upon the mail-bag and the telegraph-wire.
But since this matter has come upon the carpet, we may remind complaining members that THE PATH has from the beginning sustained its course through the help of the pockets of its editor and a few friends. There are enough members to thoroughly sustain it if they only chose to subscribe, but as a cold matter of fact the majority of its subscribers are to be found outside the ranks of our own fellows. This is probably due in part to general poverty; and yet we doubt not that even many of those poor ones frequently belong to clubs, to benefit societies, and spend many a dollar on amusements and ice-cream. We do not complain; there are other worlds and other manvantaras in prospect, and perhaps the day may come when filthy lucre will not be indispensable to work in the world.