Theosophical concept of evil

The theosophical concept of evil as stated in The Secret Doctrine by Helena Blavatsky is not the negative result of a thought but rather the opposing Power generated by the «thought per se: something which, being cogitative, and containing design and purpose, is therefore finite, and must thus find itself naturally in opposition to pure quiescence, as the natural state of absolute Spirituality and Perfection.

This opposing Power assumes innumerable shapes or forms which have a variety of immediate effects. Some are willfully enacted such as robbery, lying, cheating, bribing, and killing while others wrongful acts may just be mild human sins of omission when the person fails to alleviate suffering and spread love.

One should be careful when labeling evil especially when ascribing it to various sources. Some suffering, apparently caused by evil, is inherently caused by nature itself such as earthquakes, floods, tornadoes, incurable diseases, animals devoured by predators. Such natural phenomena just exist.

Some define evil as the feeling of what is but should not be. St. Paul described it as the «mystery of iniquity.» Jesus said it was «the abomination…standing where it ought not.»

In human life, according to theosophy, evil prevents something from becoming something it should have become but did not. It stops the individual’s physical attainment of maturity and old age; and, on a deeper level, the enriched spiritual enjoyment of life. The seeing of natural killing of animals by nature in the wild, young soldiers and boys senselessly blown to bits in wars, the horrors of Auschwitz, and victims of plagues and famines hardly supports the concept that life is reasonably controlled. A.G.H.




Campbell, Bruce F. Ancient Wisdom: A History of the Theosophical Movement. Berkeley. University of California Press. 1980 p. 47
Ellwood, Robert. Theosophy: A modern expression of the wisdom of the ages. Wheaton, IL. Quest Books. 1994. pp. 146-147