Annie Besant’s introduction to theosophy.
“Theosophy is this direct knowledge of God; the search after this is the Mysticism, or Esotericism, common to all religions, thrown by Theosophy into a scientific form, as in Hinduism, Buddhism, Roman Catholic Christianity and Sufism. Like these, it teaches in a quite clear and definite way the methods of reaching first-hand knowledge by unfolding the spiritual consciousness, and by evolving the organs through which that consciousness can function on our earth – once more, the methods of meditation and of a discipline of life. Hence it is the same as the Science of the Self, the Science of the Eternal, which is the core of Hinduism; it is “the Knowledge of God which is Eternal Life” which is the essence of Christianity.
Theosophy As Science
Theosophy As Morality and Art
Theosophy As Philosophy
Theosophy As Religion
Theosophy Applied to Social Problems
A Few Details About Systems And Worlds
The Theosophical Society
About Annie Besant (from Wikipedia):
Annie Besant (1 October 1847 – 20 September 1933) was a prominent British socialist, theosophist, women’s rights activist, writer and orator and supporter of Irish and Indian self-rule.
In 1890 Besant met Helena Blavatsky and over the next few years her interest in theosophy grew while her interest in secular matters waned. She became a member of the Theosophical Society and a prominent lecturer on the subject. As part of her theosophy-related work, she travelled to India. In 1898 she helped establish the Central Hindu College and in 1922 she helped establish the Hyderabad (Sind) National Collegiate Board in Mumbai, India. In 1902, she established the first overseas Lodge of the International Order of Co-Freemasonry, Le Droit Humain. Over the next few years she established lodges in many parts of the British Empire. In 1907 she became president of the Theosophical Society, whose international headquarters were in Adyar, Madras, (Chennai).
She also became involved in politics in India, joining the Indian National Congress. When World War I broke out in 1914, she helped launch the Home Rule League to campaign for democracy in India and dominion status within the Empire. This led to her election as president of the India National Congress in late 1917. In the late 1920s, Besant travelled to the United States with her protégé and adopted son Jiddu Krishnamurti, whom she claimed was the new Messiah and incarnation of Buddha. Krishnamurti rejected these claims in 1929.After the war, she continued to campaign for Indian independence and for the causes of theosophy, until her death in 1933.