Annie Besant

In a deep metaphysical sense, all that is conditioned is illusory. All phenomena are literally ‘appearances,’ the outer masks in which the One Reality shows itself forth in our changing universe. The more ‘material’ and solid the appearance, the further is it from reality, and therefore the more illusory it is.
Annie Besant

Karma brings us ever back to rebirth, binds us to the wheel of births and deaths. Good Karma drags us back as relentlessly as bad, and the chain which is wrought out of our virtues holds as firmly and as closely as that forged from our vices.
Annie Besant

A people can prosper under a very bad government and suffer under a very good one, if in the first case the local administration is effective and in the second it is inefficient.
Annie Besant

The true basis of morality is utility; that is, the adaptation of our actions to the promotion of the general welfare and happiness; the endeavour so to rule our lives that we may serve and bless mankind.
Annie Besant

Debating clubs among boys are very useful, not only as affording pleasant meetings and interesting discussions, but also as serving for training grounds for developing the knowledge and the qualities that are needed in public life.
Annie Besant

As the heat of the coal differs from the coal itself, so do memory, perception, judgment, emotion, and will, differ from the brain which is the instrument of thought.
Annie Besant

No durable things are built on violent passion. Nature grows her plants in silence and in darkness, and only when they have become strong do they put their heads above the ground.
Annie Besant

Isaiah is by far the finest and least objectionable of the seventeen prophets whose supposed productions form the latter part of the Old Testament. A distinctly higher moral tone appears in the writings called by his name, and this is especially noticeable in the ‘Second Isaiah,’ who wrote after the Babylonish captivity.
Annie Besant

To me in my childhood, elves and fairies of all sorts were very real things, and my dolls were as really children as I was myself a child.
Annie Besant

The soul grows by reincarnation in bodies provided by nature, more complex, more powerful, as the soul unfolds greater and greater faculties. And so the soul climbs upward into the light eternal. And there is no fear for any child of man, for inevitably he climbs towards God.
Annie Besant

No philosophy, no religion, has ever brought so glad a message to the world as this good news of Atheism.
Annie Besant

Theosophy tries to bridge the gulf between Buddhism and Christianity by pointing to the fundamental spiritual truths on which both religions are built, and by winning people to regard the Buddha and the Christ as fellow-laborers, and not as rivals.
Annie Besant

Everyone knows the beautiful story of Abraham and the sacrifice of Isaac. How this noble father led his child to the slaughter; how Isaac meekly submitted; how the farce went on till the lad was bound and laid on the altar, and how God then stopped the murder, and blessed the intending murderer for his willingness to commit the crime.
Annie Besant

Better remain silent, better not even think, if you are not prepared to act.
Annie Besant

India is a country in which every great religion finds a home.
Annie Besant

It is the duty of the followers of Islam to spread through the civilised world, a knowledge of what Islam means – its spirit and message.
Annie Besant

Quick condemnation of all that is not ours, of views with which we disagree, of ideas that do not attract us, is the sign of a narrow mind, of an uncultivated intelligence. Bigotry is always ignorant, and the wise boy, who will become the wise man, tries to understand and to see the truth in ideas with which he does not agree.
Annie Besant

What is the essence of theosophy? It is the fact that man, being himself divine, can know the divinity whose life he shares. As an inevitable corollary to this supreme truth comes the fact of the brotherhood of man.
Annie Besant

Death consists, indeed, in a repeated process of unrobing, or unsheathing. The immortal part of man shakes off from itself, one after the other, its outer casings, and – as the snake from its skin, the butterfly from its chrysalis – emerges from one after another, passing into a higher state of consciousness.
Annie Besant

‘Easter’ is a movable event, calculated by the relative positions of sun and moon, an impossible way of fixing year by year the anniversary of a historical event, but a very natural and indeed inevitable way of calculating a solar festival. These changing dates do not point to the history of a man, but to the hero of a solar myth.
Annie Besant

There is far more misunderstanding of Islam than there is, I think, of the other religions of the world. So many things are said of it by those who do not belong to that faith.
Annie Besant

The generous wish to share with all what is precious, to spread broadcast priceless truths, to shut out none from the illumination of true knowledge, has resulted in a zeal without discretion that has vulgarised Christianity, and has presented its teachings in a form that often repels the heart and alienates the intellect.
Annie Besant

Refusal to believe until proof is given is a rational position; denial of all outside of our own limited experience is absurd.
Annie Besant

For centuries the leaders of Christian thought spoke of women as a necessary evil, and the greatest saints of the Church are those who despise women the most.
Annie Besant

Liberty is a great celestial Goddess, strong, beneficent, and austere, and she can never descend upon a nation by the shouting of crowds, nor by arguments of unbridled passion, nor by the hatred of class against class.
Annie Besant

There is much, of course, in the exclusive claims of Christianity which make it hostile to other faiths.
Annie Besant

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