The Press and Occultism
The Path, February, 1889
When THE PATH first appeared on the scene, the World and the Sun, two prominent daily newspapers of New York, devoted a large space to a criticism of this journal anent a prophecy concerning the Theosophical Society based on certain books in India called Nadigrandhams, and took pains to say that we were all only superficial dreamers and dabblers, but at the same time the Sun itself displayed ignorance of the subject. We then went on to record, among others, a prophecy as follows:
“The Sanscrit language will one day be again the language used by man upon this earth, first in science and metaphysics, and then in common life. Even in the lifetime of the SUN’Switty writer, he will see the terms now preserved in that noblest of languages creeping into the literature and press of the day.” 1
Already our words are coming true, and even in the paper that abused while it advertised us. In that paper of January 2nd, appears this editorial paragraph:
“For the space of 111 years from to-day we are to have the figure 9 in our years, and the occultists, who put much stress upon numbers, predict that the condition of mankind will be greatly improved over all past times during this period. It is the age of Kal Yuga.”
In this is a reference, in seriousness, to “the Occultists,” together with more superficial statements of what those persons say, nearly all of it wrong, chiefly that the Occultists “predict that the condition of mankind will be greatly improved over all past time during this period.” What they do say is, that things will grow worse in reality instead of better. But at the end of the paragraph we find the paper referring to the present age as the age of “Kal Yuga,”—which ought to be Kali Yuga. The same “witty writer” who criticised our superficial oriental knowledge probably wrote the lines above and forgot to inform himself that Kali Yuga means Dark Age, and hence he grew tautological. Still, we can forgive him, inasmuch as probably several hundred thousand readers of the Sun read the statement, and will remember “Kali Yuga,” two words from the Sanscrit, after the journalist who wrote them has ceased airing his superficial attainments.
In other journals we can find numerous references to such Sanscrit terms as Nirvana, Satwa, Devachan, Ishwara, and a host of others, all taken from Sanscrit metaphysics and philosophy.
On the whole, therefore, we begin to see a beginning of the fulfilment of the prophecy made so long ago.
1. PATH, May, 1886. [“Another Theosophical Prophecy”]