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U.G. Krishnamurti: Recollects the Second-Generation Theosophical Society

Second Generation refers to a shifted leadership in the Theosophical Society, with international headquarters in Adyar, Madras, post-1890’s, and led by Annie Besant in 1907 til her death. The second generation Theosophists drift from a teaching of progressive evolution to a program of “progressive millenialism,” says Catherine Wessinger, in her The Second Generation Leaders of the Theosophical Society (Adyar). U.G. (Uppaluri Gopala) Krishnamurti, a 20th century philosopher, recollects his early life where he was surrounded by the Theosophical Society. U.G.’s recollection should be informative, against the psychological traps of cult-habits. U.G. talks of his impression he gained about Jiddu Krishnamurti, C.W. Leadbeater, Annie Besant, and things he heard about H.P.B. as a strangely hypnotizing woman who gave lectures at the colleges smoking her cigar.

§ It is worth noting, U.G. Krishnamurti’s correct remarks on second generation Theosophical Society, and as to Catherine Wessinger’s paper on its shift to a progressive millenialism, under Besant and C.W.L.’s leadership, i.e., the expectation of a collective salvation by superhuman agents contradicts H.P.B.’s superiors.


  1. What about Theosophy now? Is it third generation? Or post-Theosophy? Or what? Or does the Freedom of Thought Resolution of 1924 put contemporary Theosophy outside of all those categories. As a member of the Adyar branch, I’d be curious to know how it is regarded today.


    • It is entering fourth-generation. Historically, after 1935, the Society declines. I’ve been told directly, the aim of the Adyar-American Branch is a broader, accepting approach of the historical and doctrinal differences between different influences, like Purucker, Co-Masonry, Liberal Catholic Church, Blavatsky, Besant, Leadbeater, etc that I disagree with.

      It is a mixture of approaches now. The Freedom of Thought did not prevent the degeneration of the T.S. into a cult of messianism, which by the 70s-90s, it at least made up for. But the world has changed, greatly, and any legitimacy the Society may have had has long gone, and in some spaces, yet this is dwindling, in India is the air of automatic respect it had.


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