Henry Steel Colonel Olcott
Colonel Henry Steel Olcott (2 August 1832 – 17 February 1907) was an American military officer, journalist, lawyer and the co-founder and first President of the Theosophical Society.
Olcott was the first well-known American of European ancestry to make a formal conversion to Buddhism. His subsequent actions as president of the Theosophical Society helped create a renaissance in the study of Buddhism. Olcott is considered a Buddhist modernist for his efforts in interpreting Buddhism through a Westernized lens.
Olcott was a major revivalist of Buddhism in Sri Lanka and he is still honored in Sri Lanka for these efforts. Olcott has been called by Sri Lankans "one of the heroes in the struggle of our independence and a pioneer of the present religious, national and cultural revival".
From 1874 on, Olcott's spiritual growth and development with Blavatsky and other spiritual leaders would lead to the founding of the Theosophical Society. In 1875, Olcott, Blavatsky, and others, notably William Quan Judge, formed the Theosophical Society in New York City, USA. Olcott financially supported the earliest years of the Theosophical Society and was acting President while Blavatsky served as the Society's Secretary.
In December 1878 they left New York in order to move the headquarters of the Society to India. They landed at Bombay on February 16, 1879. Olcott set out to experience the native country of his spiritual leader, the Buddha. The headquarters of the Society were established at Adyar, Chennai as the Theosophical Society Adyar, starting also the Adyar Library and Research Centre within the headquarters.
I forget the exact motives of Olcott and I believe his outlook was much broader but with resurgence of Buddhist revival in Ceylon, his original ideas metamorphosed to a single theme.
His broader inquiry stretched into to religion, philosophy and science, not spirituality alone.But his followers in Ceylon put fullstops to science and philosophy.
Looking for absolute truth
I never joined a club or secret society in my entire life.
Club mentality was an alien theme to me, for the simple reason of confining myself to a narrow segment of free inquiry closes all avenues for new emerging knowledge,especially science.
Having returned from united Kingdom with lot of new ideas, I was invited to a symposium organized by a spiritual organization. I grabbed the opportunity and said it should include all three disciplines, philosophy, religion and science (no politics by conviction).
I took the responsibility of organizing it but did not have a clue how to approach the philosophy theme.
Luckily, I knew Monte Gopallawa, mostly indirectly (my sisters batch) who had read philosophy in his undergraduate studies. He was the Governor of the Central Province and was easy to approach. Through his offices I managed an introduction to Professor
We decided to have a “short weekly discussion” in the University of Peradeniya and invited few guys and girls. In the first discussion we had about 10 and in one of the subsequent discussions, one guy (I did not know) in a national dress, who came from the Buddhist background, started arguing on a flimsy point slanted towards Buddhism, off the track of professors theme by many a mile.
Professor in his inimitable way, tried to put him on the track with very short doses of philosophy. This idiot went on in circles and after waiting awhile, annoyed to the brim, I blasted this guy and told him, we came to listen to philosophy not Buddhism (this idiot’s interpretation, not Buddha’s) and you better get out of this room or I will throw you out physically.
I got up from my seat and showed him, I meant what I said.
He with few of his followers left the room and there was one other guy (may be my very young brother in law) beside me left in the room.
Professor had a bright smile in his face and after a pause said these guys cannot understand a simple term in philosophy.
That is the problem I am faced with.
We continued to have the discussion as planned and in subsequent discussion I was the only guy left.
Prof ADP Kalansooriya
The above incident brought us together and he had few medical problems (he never sought any advice from me) that made our encounters more frequent.
He was probably the last true philosopher we had. His thesis in UK was accepted without a hitch, in early sixties, not in any way slanted to Buddhism.
I was lucky to have receive a free copy of his last book, related to language games in philosophy.
It was very heavy stuff in content and English terms, which I had to refer the dictionary to grasp his thoughts.
That was the only book in my life I read one chapter at a time (several times) and never proceeded to next chapter without getting hold of his dialectical and eclectically themes.
Listening to him over six to ten close door sessions made me well prepared.
One of his attempts was to get us out of the rigid often prejudiced views. He said philosophers are also trapped in this same dilemma.
He encouraged us to think “out of the box” and showed us the way out of a dogma.
I am very thankful to him and he is no more.
He sucumbed to a medical misadventure just like Monte Gopallawa, his only and the last student (he died before him).
Coming back to "Looking for absolute truth", I organized symposium and invited him for short introduction to philosophy in Sinhala.
I of course dished out the science theme and after a few introductory remarks made into "a question and short answers".
That was the last time I addressed a public lecture 15 years ago.
I try my level best to avoid any.
Simply because the general public want to be inside the box.
Getting them out is difficult philosophically.
Sunday, August 21, 2016
Why Russians Never Landed a Human on Moon?
Following hypotheses of mine are outrageous but nevertheless needs probing.
I am not going to include them in my new book.
Human conspiracy is in their genes, and outlining them is an uphill task.
I am scrapping only the surface.
I do not intend to reveal all of them and waste rest of my life on a failed endeavor.
I have better things to do in my life.
Coming to my pondering of Russian actions.
1. Russia did not have the technology.
This may not be true, they were well ahead of America.
2. Russia did not have the money.
Probable but cannot be substantiated.
3. Russia was prudent not to waste their scared resources.
This is true in a communist but relatively poor country.
4.Russia did not want to sacrifice the life of their trained astronauts for an ego exercise.
This is my bone of contention.
They are more useful in defense strategies.
5. None of the above.
More likely scenario.
Now let me take the American attitude.
1. American public are generally stupid (mind you not all) and are mostly afflicted by an incurable ego problem.
This is true.
2. They want to be the first in scientific advances and pay or hijack (Germans after World War II) for personnel.
Similar to above ego mentality.
3. They had enough resources but wasted them on putative communist war.
4. They had a powerful secret service and did not want politicians to take credit.
5. JFK was assassinated to channel money (not for space program) to CIA projects.
6. America never send any astronauts to moon (to save money for covert operations) but choreographed either by holography or actual photography on earth.
This is my belief even though there is no proof available.
I am human and have the freedom for skepticism.
7. America did not have a correct sense and directive with so many lobbies to contend with.
8.They had to satisfy Vatican.
Most likely overtly or covertly.
9. None of the above.
Most likely scenario.
Now my revelation hypothesis.
1. Russia and USA are toying the same line in their defense policy.
2. They do not want conflicts to throttle their own programs.
3. They are in contact with aliens and using their technology (without the knowledge of the public0.
4. Russia, America and Aliens already have an advanced interplanetary mission.
5. America (CIA) is using drug money for these clandestine black projects since the legislative Assemblies are very slow to authorize them of veto them.