Short Biography of
HELENA PETROVNA BLAVATSKY
Co-founder of the Theosophical Society.
1831 - Madame
Blavatsky born, at Ekaterinoslav,
H P Blavatsky’s birthplace at
Ekaterinoslav (now Dniepropetrovsk)
This building was opened as a
Blavatsky Museum on March 24th 1994
This H P Blavatsky Memorial Board
was erected in the house in 1991
on the 160th anniversary of her birth
1849- She married General Blavatsky, a very elderly man, from whom she soon separated.
H P Blavatsky (circa 1848)
1849-50 Left him and traveled in Turkey, Greece, Egypt, and France. She studied magic in Egypt with an aged Copt and joined 'The Druses of Lebanon,' a secret society
1851 - Met her Master in London. When walking with her father, she saw a tall and stately Rajput whom she recognized as a Protector known in her visions from childhood. He spoke to her of a future work she was to do under His direction after preparation in the East.
1852 - Embarked for Canada late in the year, went to New Orleans, Mexico, South America, West Indies, thence via the Cape and Ceylon to India.
1853 - Attempted but failed to
enter Tibet. Returned to
1854 - Came to America again,
crossing the Rockies with a caravan of immigrants. May have
1855 - Left for India late in the year, via Japan and the Straits (Malaya).
1856-57 - Traveled thought India, Kashmir, Ladakh, parts of Tibet, Burma.
1858 - Returned to Europe via
Java, staying in France and Germany. Then returned to
1860 - Left for the Caucasus early in the year, where she traveled among the native tribes, remaining there until 1864-65. Experienced several physical and psychic crisis acquiring complete control over her occult powers.
1866-67 Left Russia again and
traveled extensively in the Balkans,
1868 - Went to India and Tibet with her Master.
1870 - Returned to Greece.
1871 - Embarked for Egypt and was
shipwrecked near the Island of Spetsai, July 4.
1871-72 Settled in
1873- After brief travels in Eastern Europe, went to Paris where she lived with her brother, painting and writing (in addition to her other accomplishments she was a fine artist and a very clever caricaturist). Whilst in Paris on her Masters orders she left to New York, landing July 7. She was in New York, without personal funds, having exchanged her first class passage to steerage class (the cheapest) in order to buy steerage class for a poor woman and children who had been swindled. Although she had in her trunk 23,000 francs entrusted to her by her Master, she earned her living by working for a maker of cravats. Still acting under orders she finally took the money to the town of Buffalo and gave it to an unknown man just in time to prevent him from committing suicide. An unsuccessful business venture in a Long Island Farm, used up the 1,000 Ruble legacy she had received on the death of her father.
1874 - She was ordered to go to the Eddy homestead in Chittenden. This was the scene of various occult phenomena being investigated by Colonel H.S. Olcott.
1875- September 8, founded the Theosophical Society, together with Col. Olcott, William Q. Judge and others. Inaugural address of Col. Olcott delivered November 17.
1877 - Published her first great work, Isis Unveiled, in the autumn. Her magnificent attack upon the materialism of religion and science. She sent the first proceeds together with money received for her various articles published by Russian newspapers and journals, to the Red Cross in Russia to help her compatriots wounded in the Russo-Turkish war.
1878 - 1878 - She became an American citizen. Later that year, acting 'under orders,' she and Olcott sailed for India; they landed in Bombay in February 1879.
1879- Launched her first magazine, The Theosophist, in October, which resulted in rapid growth of Theosophical work in India, 1879-83.
1880 - Blavatsky and Olcott the two founders of the Theosophical Society toured Sri Lanka on behalf of Buddhism
1881 - Blavatsky and Olcott converted themselves to Buddhism
1882 - The headquarters of the Society was moved to its present site in Adyar, Madras. She made various tours of India between her arrival in 1879 and her visit to Europe in 1884. In the absence of the Founders, came the one sided report of the Society for Psychical Research, in an attempt to show her up as an impostor. Since then, the S.P.R. has retracted the allegations against her. Despite the intervention of her Master to restore her health, it deteriorated and she was unable to remain at Adyar for more than a short visit paid later that year.
1884 - Left for Europe, February,
20, accompanied by Col. Olcott and others. After visiting
Nice, settled for a while in
1885- Gravely ill, she sailed to Naples March 31, leaving India for good. After a brief stay at Torre del Greco, settled at Wurzburg, Germany, where she wrote a large part of The Secret Doctrine.
1886 - Moved to Ostende in July, visiting Elberfeld on her way.
1887 - Transferred her residence to London in May, where the Blavatsky Lodge was established, and her second magazine, Lucifer, was launched in September.
1888 - Published the first two volumes of the Secret Doctrine, late autumn. Founded the Esoteric School.
1889 - Published the key to Theosophy and the Voice of the Silence.
1890 - Established European Headquarters of the Theosophical Society, at 19 Avenue Road, London, where she died.
1891- She passed away in London. Her ashes were divided between New York, India, and London, and part of it is interred under her statue in Adyar.
In her will she requested that each year, on the anniversary of her death, her friends should assemble and read from The Light of Asia and the Bhagavad Gita. By Colonel Olcott's wish, this anniversary came to be known as 'White Lotus Day.' Colonel Olcott summed up the secret of H.P.B.'s remarkable power in producing swift changes in the lives of those about her as due to: Her amazing occult knowledge and phenomena-working powers, together with her relation to the hidden Masters. Her sparkling talents, especially as a conversationalist with her social accomplishments, wide travels, and extraordinary adventures. Her insight into problems of philology, racial origins, fundamental bases of religions, and keys to old mysteries and symbols. Unflinching self-consecration to the Great Ones irradiated the life of H.P.B. and she will ever be known as the 'Light-Bringer' of the Nineteenth Century.
Try these links for
more info about Theosophy
and there’s always a cup of tea afterwards
Classic Introductory Theosophy Text
A Text Book of Theosophy By C
Try these if you are looking for a
local Theosophy Group or Centre