The Late Lord Lytton and the Masters (1884 article)


(The Theosophist, October 1884, p. 17, newly published on along with the entire first five year run of the journal, thanks to the labors of Marc Demarest, David Reigle, and Joe Fulton among others.  I mention these three because they will be attending the 2011 Church of Light preconference on Emma Hardinge Britten, Marc as featured presenter.)

 The World says that the Life of Lytton promises to be very interesting, though it is naturally very Bulwerian. “One of the most curious passages in the Biography will be that (yet to come) which relates to Lytton’s researches in the occult world, partly described in Zanoni, the Strange Story, &c. He thoroughly believed in the powers with which he invested Mejnour, and practised the art of divination with a curious, and to me unaccountable, success, an example of which will be found in this first installment of the work, Vol II. pp. 328-9).

It appears that in 1860, he cast the horoscope of Disraeli, who was at that time in one of the darkest eclipses ofhis life. He had enjoyed a brief taste of office, but was doomed to a long exclusion from it–from 1859 to 1866.  In 1860, then, Lord Lytton cast his nativity, and declared that the ‘figure’ surprised him, ‘it is so completely opposed to what I myself should have augured, not only from the rest of his career, but from my knowledge of the man.’ Among other things he predicted that Disraeli would gain honours ‘far beyond the most favourable prospects that could be reasonably anticipated from his past career, his present position, or his personal endowments;’ ‘he will leave a higher name than I should say his intellect quite warrants, or than would now be conjectured’ ‘his illnesses will be few and quick, but his last illness may be lingering. He is likely to live to old age, the close of his career much honoured;·’ ‘he will die whether in or out of office, in an exceptionally high position, greatly lamented, and surrounded to the end by all the magnificent planetary influences of a propitious Jupiter ;’. ‘.he will bequeath a repute out of all proportion to the opinion now entertained of his intellect even by those who think most highly of it  and so on. Who would have believed all this  of Disraeli in 1860 ?

Whatever may be the differences of opinion regarding Disraeli’s political views, it  cannot be disputed that he predicted with accuracy the present position of parties and politics.  He had himself something of the old Hebrew seer in him, and unknown to himself he was the subjected of a very remarkable study by one who still claims the mysterious brotherhood of India as a member of their own body, although he never avowed his connection with them.

Perhaps he is not the only one who has been “the subject of a remarkable study by the mysterious Brotherhood in India.” Who knows?– Ed. 

KPJ comment: This appears as an unsigned article in The Theosophist and appears to have had no byline in the World from which it is quoted.  The references to the Masters are quite mysterious and elliptical.  CofL readers will be intrigued by this confirmation that EBL was “addicted to astrology” as he described himself from a very young age.  I will be hoping to find out more about this article but wanted to share it immediately in celebration of the availability of The Theosophist 1879-1885 at