About William Q. Judge
From the cover of Practical Occultism by William Q. Judge:
William Quan Judge was born 1851 in Dublin and came to New York with his father in 1864. He later became a citizen of the United States and a member of the New York bar. In this capacity he helped H. P. Blavatsky in 1875 to organize the Theosophical Society of which he was a co-founder. Impressed with the logic and practical value of the esoteric philosophy he became active in introducing it to the West; his work with the public through magazines, the Press, and on the lecture platform broke molds of dogmatic thought in America. He gained national recognition as an authority on the esoteric tradition when, at the World’s Fair in Chicago in 1893, he represented the Theosophical Society at the Parliament of Religions, tracing all beliefs to a common source.
The products of his pen found their place chiefly in periodicals of the day. Letters That Have Helped Me, a series of personal hints to one of his students, his recension of the Bhagavad-Gita combined with Essays on the Gita, and The Ocean of Theosophy, an excellent introductory book, have become classics in occult literature. Two volumes of Judge’s collected writings, edited by Dara Eklund, are now available as Echoes of the Orient.
From LETTERS THAT HAVE HELPED ME:
ON W. Q. J.
Words Of Students And Friends
FIRST met William Q. Judge in the winter of 1885. He was at I that time a devoted student of the Bhagavad Gita. It was his constant companion, and his favorite book ever after. His life and work were shaped by its precepts. That “equal-mindedness” and “skill in the performance of actions” inculcated in this “Book of Devotion,” and declared to constitute “Yoga,” or union with the Supreme Spirit, Mr. Judge possessed in greater measure than anyone I have ever known. His devotion never wavered; his anchorage seemed ever sure and steadfast, and herein lay his strength. His skill in the performance of actions was marvellous, his executive ability of the highest order. He was never disturbed by passion or blinded by resentment, and when openly and strongly assailed, he held steadily on his course, working for the one object of his life, the success of the T. S.
And so he worked on to the end, friends rallying around him and aiding him in his work. People on the other side of the ocean never understood Mr. Judge’s position in America, where he was well known in connection with his work, nor how impossible it would be to shake confidence in him. It is true the issues raised were seemingly altogether personal, and it took some time to make clear to the whole Society their real nature. When, however, these issues became clear and people had time to consider them, the verdict was overwhelming, and those who were present at Boston last April  will never forget the scene there enacted [when the T. S. in A. was formed]. It has been my lot to preside over many conventions, both medical and Theosophical, but I never witnessed such a scene before and never expect to again. There was no noisy demonstration, but the very air throbbed with sympathy and appreciation.
He was never narrow, never selfish, never conceited. He would drop his own plan in a moment if a better were suggested, and was delighted if some one would carry on the work he had devised, and immediately inaugurate other lines of work. To get on with the work and forward the movement seemed to be his only aim in life. . . . For myself, knowing Mr. Judge as I did, and associating with him day after day – at home, in the rush of work, in long days of travel over desert-wastes or over the trackless ocean, having travelled with him a distance equal to twice around the globe – there is not the slightest doubt of his connection with and service of the Great Lodge. He did the Master’s work to the best of his ability, and thus carried out the injunction of H. P. B. to “keep the link unbroken.” — J. D. BUCK
For the last four years, nearly, most of our communication has been personal, much of this period having been spent under the same roof. I have had good opportunity to study the character of the man and I do not hesitate to place my estimate of him on record.
There is not one act in the life of William Q. Judge that has come under my observation, that savors of selfishness or of a desire to further any personal end.
Perhaps I am not qualified to pass on the merits as an occultist of the man whose memory I hold in such grateful esteem; but I can, at least, speak of what has passed before my eyes in the ordinary affairs of life, and in these affairs I have invariably found him to be the soul of unselfishness, honor, generosity, and all the other virtues that men hold so dear in other men. The severity which some saw in him was on the outside, only. He was not always patient with folly and faintheartedness, yet even these drew from him pity rather than condemnation, and nothing except deliberate cowardice persisted in, and treachery to the Cause itself seemed to place the offender outside the pale of his present sympathy and attention.
He was singularly free from the vice of constantly seeking to explain and justify his actions. He believed in doing the present good act, in carrying out the present good intention, leaving the result where it belonged. Even when something occurred which, apparently, called for particular explanation and justification, he usually neither explained nor justified. The most striking example of this, of which I have any knowledge, grew out of a letter that I received from him in 1887, in which letter was folded another on different paper and written, in blue, in the hand made so familiar by reason of the frequent “exposures of so-called Mahatmic messages.” The enclosure was directly in explanation of a matter that was no more than hinted at in Judge’s own letter, and when I wrote, making a jocular allusion to his effort at precipitating a letter for my benefit, he answered, in a direct, straightforward way, that he had done nothing of the kind and would not; but, contrary to his usual custom, he gave a theory of how such things might be accomplished. Some years afterwards we met in St. Louis and I showed him the letter and the enclosure. After turning the papers over for a moment, he looked me straight in the face and said, in the simplest manner, “I can’t explain it. It’s a dead give-away.” And there the matter rested. But for my certain belief in his integrity I might have doubted him then, might have given some heed to the cry of “fraud” later. Years after the occurrence I found out, independently of Judge, the truth about the matter, and my faith in his sincerity was abundantly justified.
Among all my friends and acquaintances, William Q. Judge was least wasteful of time. He seemed never to rest, for work was his rest. And yet he was not, in any sense, an unsociable man. . . . During the last few years, he seemed to become more and more absorbed in his work, and yet, much as he was struggling through, and it was enough to appall the ordinary hardworking man, he never hesitated to take on some other burden if it appeared to promise well for the movement in which he was so thoroughly wrapped up. Notwithstanding the busy life that he led, he was one of the most accessible men that I ever knew, and one of the few who was always ready to accept a suggestion. He did not know everything, and was aware of the fact, but he did know how to utilize the material that he found ready to his hand.
Though he was always the same kindly friend to me, never in all these years writing or speaking a harsh word to me, I am aware that in his intercourse with the many people whom he met “the Irish boy” sometimes came between himself and others. To those who were aware of the real inner life of the man this is enough explanation for the apparent contradictions and failings on the everyday plane of life that he shared in common with the rest of mankind. That he ever deliberately wounded or deceived anyone is unthinkable to me. — ELLIOTT B. PAGE
In the summer of 1894 we were privileged to have him stay at our house for several weeks, and since then he spent at least one evening a week with us until his illness forced him to leave New York. . . . Day after day he would come back from the office utterly exhausted in mind and body, and night after night he would lie awake fighting the arrows of suspicion and doubt that would come at him from all over the world. He said they were like shafts of fire piercing him; and in the morning he would come downstairs wan and pale and unrested, and one step nearer the limit of his strength; but still with the same gentle and forgiving spirit. Truly they knew not what they did.
Perhaps the most striking evidence of his greatness was the wisdom with which he treated different people and the infinite knowledge of character shown by him in his guidance of his pupils. I do not believe he was the same to any two people. . . . His most lovable trait was his exquisite sympathy and gentleness. It has been said of him that no one ever touched a sore spot with such infinite tenderness, and I know many that would rather have been scolded and corrected by Mr. Judge than praised by anyone else.
It was the good fortune of a few of us to know something of the real Ego who used the body known as Wm. Q. Judge. He once spent some hours describing to my wife and me the experience the Ego had in assuming control of the instrument it was to use for so many years. The process was not a quick nor an easy one and, indeed, was never absolutely perfected, for to Mr. Judge’s dying day, the physical tendencies and heredity of the body he used would crop up and interfere with the full expression of the inner man’s thoughts and feelings. An occasional abruptness and coldness of manner was attributable to this lack of co-ordination. Of course Mr. Judge was perfectly aware of this and it would trouble him for fear his friends would be deceived as to his real feelings. He was always in absolute control of his thoughts and actions, but his body would sometimes slightly modify their expression. * * *
Mr. Judge told me in December, 1894, that the Judge body was due by its Karma to die in the next year and that it would have to be tided over this period by extraordinary means. He then expected this process to be entirely successful, and that he would be able to use that body for many years, but he did not count upon the assaults from without, nor the strain and exhaustion due to the “Row.” This, and the body’s heredity, proved too much for even his will and power. Two months before his death he knew he was to die, but even then the indomitable will was hard to conquer and the poor exhausted, pain-racked body was dragged through a miserable two months in one final and supreme effort to stay with his friends. And when he did decide to go, those who loved him most were the most willing for the parting. I thank the Gods that I was privileged to know him. It was a benediction to call him friend. — G. HIJO
My acquaintance with William Q. Judge antedated considerably my interest in Theosophy. We were introduced by a newspaper man who spoke of him to me as a thoroughly honest good fellow but a crank about some incomprehensible oriental philosophy, a knowledge of which would not be, to any practical mind, compensative for the difficulty of understanding it. If my memory serves me rightly, we met first upon an occasion when H. P. Blavatsky was induced to try, in presence of some reporters, if she could open up communication with the diaphanous remainder of a night watchman who had been drowned in an East River dock. Olcott was present, in command, prominent and authoritative; and Judge, in attendance, reserved and quiet. The spook was shy and the reporters were sarcastic. The only one apparently annoyed by their humor was the Colonel. Mr. Judge’s placidity and good nature commended him to the liking of the reporters and made a particularly favorable impression upon me, which was deepened by the experiences of an acquaintance that continued while he lived.
In all that time, though I have seen him upon a good many occasions when he would have had excellent excuse for wrath, his demeanor was uniformly the same—kindly, considerate and self-restrained, not merely in such measure of polite self-control as might be expected of a gentleman, but as if inspired by much higher regards than mere respect for the covenances of good society. He always seemed to look for mitigating circumstances in even the pure cussedness of others, seeking to credit them with, at least, honesty of purpose and good intentions, however treacherous and malicious their acts toward him might have been. He did not appear willing to believe that people did evil through preference for it, but only because they were ignorant of the good, and its superior advantages: consequently he was very tolerant.
But that meekness of spirit – a strange thing, by the way, in a brainy and rather nervous Irishman – by no means made of him a weak, or yielding character who could be bluffed into doing what his judgment did not approve, or turned aside by influence from any course of action upon which he had deliberately resolved. And careful deliberation upon things was one of his strongest characteristics. His mind was very active, quick and resourceful in suggestion, but I do not recall having ever known of his trusting its impulses until he had thoroughly weighed and considered them. Not infrequently, matters that seemed to me of trivial importance things that might as well be settled right off, and about which there did not appear to be room for two opinions, he would take under advisement over night, or even longer. And candour compels me to admit that such things, as a rule, turned out to be much more important, and with chains of effects more serious, than had at first seemed possible, fully justifying his caution.
Now, and for a good while past, I have had no doubt of his receiving aid in his deliberations, and guidance toward correct conclusions, from intelligences with prescience beyond that of ordinary men, but when I first noted his habit of deliberation I regarded it simply as a proneness to “chew over” things—prudent but rather un-Irish.
Many journalists work very hard, but I have never known anyone, even in that toilsome field of labor, so indefatigable and persistent as William Q. Judge. No matter how much those about him might endeavour, by their assistance, to lighten his burden, the effort was hopeless, for a moment’s leisure, when he should have been resting, only gave him opportunity to think of something else to do. — J. H. CONNELLY
His life was an example of the possibility of presenting new ideas with emphasis, persistence, and effect; without becoming eccentric or one-sided, without losing touch with our fellows; in short, without becoming a “crank.”
Those who have heard him speak, know the singular directness with which his mind went to the marrow of a subject, the simplicity of his words, the unaffected selflessness that radiated from the man. The quality of “common sense” was Mr. Judge’s preeminent characteristic. He had the gift of words, but also the far greater gift of a sense of proportion, of a co-ordinating faculty which reduced those words to their proper place, as mere tools or agents, attracting no attention to themselves. His sentences were short and plain; his manner cool and quiet: but what he said was remembered, for his words appealed to the sense of truth; they seemed to “soak in,” like the showers which the farmers prize, while a “torrent of eloquence” would have run off, leaving dry ground.
Whether true or not, it might well be that Wm. Q. Judge was, as has been said, one of the signers of the Declaration of Independence. His qualities were those which characterized the leaders of that period. There was energy on the one hand, and intellect on the other; but there was also a dominating and tenacious common sense, which was not a dull conservatism, but a balancing quality which converted intellect into clear judgment, and blind expansive energy into cool steady work.
For the lack of this, we find that the intellectual element of the French Revolution furnished only a chaos of visionary schemes, while its emotional and animal energies were expended in destructive heat, fury, and froth. — W. MAIN
Mr. Judge joined another office to that of evolver. He was a conserver. When one came to work under him, one was at first surprised, perhaps annoyed even, at his insistence in small things. It was, keep your desk thus; or, dip your pen thus; or, make your entries and copy your letters in this fashion, and not in your own way. Presently one found that the sum total of attention in these details was greater celerity with less waste of energy, or greater mental freedom often obtained by greater ease of bodily action. All he did had a meaning when you came to put it together.
In thinking of this helper and teacher of ours, I find myself thinking almost wholly of the future. He was one who never looked back; he looked forward always. While the activities of the body and the mind were engaged each moment in the duty of that moment, yet his heart was set upon the promise of the future and the song of his soul echoed the music of cycles yet to come. We think of him not as of a man departed from our midst, but as a soul set free to work its mighty mission, rejoicing in that freedom and resplendent with compassion and power. His was a nature that knew no trammels, but acknowledged the divine laws in all things. He was, as he himself said, “rich in hope.” He wrote recently that we should now turn our attention to work in the United States in order to have there “a world compelling and sky defying place for Theosophy.”
That future as he saw and sees it is majestic in its harmonious proportions. It presaged the liberation of the race. It struck the shackles from the self-imprisoned and bade the souls of men be free. It evokes now, to-day, the powers of the inner man.... Death, the magician, opened a door to show us these things. If we are faithful, that door will never close. If we are faithful — only that proviso. Close up the ranks, and let Fidelity be the agent of heavenly powers. To see America, the cradle of the new race, fit herself to help and uplift that race and to prepare here a haven and a home for Egos yet to appear . . . for this he worked; for this will work those who come after him. And he works with them. — JULIA W. L. KEIGHTLEY
A friend of old time and of the future—as such does William Q. Judge appear to me, as doubtless he does to many others in this and other lands.
The first Theosophical treatise that I read was his Epitome of Theosophy, my first meeting with him changed the whole current of my life. I trusted him then, as I trust him now, and all those whom he trusted; to me it seems that “trust” is the bond that binds, that makes the strength of the Movement, for it is of the heart. And this trust he called forth was not allowed to remain a blind trust, for as time went on, as the energy, steadfastness and devotion of the student became more marked, the “real W. Q. J.” was more and more revealed, until the power that radiated through him became in each an ever-present help in the work. As such it remains to-day, a living centre in each heart that trusted him, a focus for the Rays of the coming “great messenger.”
Having been engaged in active T. S. work in Boston for over seven years, it has been my Karma to be brought in touch with him under many different circumstances, the various crises, local and general, through which the Society has safely passed. In all these, his was the voice that encouraged or admonished, his the hand that guided matters to a harmonious issue. Of his extraordinary power of organization, his marvellous insight into the character and capacity of individuals, his ability of turning seeming evils into powers for good, I have had many proofs.
That he was a “great occultist” many know by individual experience, but none have fathomed the depths of his power and knowledge. The future will reveal much in regard to him that is now hidden, will show the real scope of his life-work. We know that to us that life-work has been an inestimable boon, and that through us it must be bestowed on others. The lines have been laid down for us by H. P. B., W. Q. J., and Masters, and we can take again our watchword, that which he gave us at the passing of H. P. B., “Work, watch and wait.” We will not have long to wait.
Speaking of Mr. Judge as anybody might have known him – as a human being like ourselves – he was humble, unassuming, modest, strong, patient, meek, courageous, an organizer beyond comparison, with powers similar to those possessed by H.P.B., and never using them in any way but to smooth the path for those who desired to follow the road to knowledge. He was kind and patient, as we do not often find with tremendous forcefulness; he had extraordinary powers of organization, with a perception that could look into the very motives and minds of others, could see traitors around him, could read the hearts of those desirous of injuring him, and yet in all his intercourse with them, paving the way for them, remaining ever kind. For the one who most injured him, he had only this to say when friends about him spoke their denunciations: “Never mind what others do. Put no one out of your heart. Go on with the work you see. Work will tell in time, and all these follies of others – follies of ignorance – will fall to nothing. Then, when the time comes, we will all have gained strength; when those who have fallen away for a while come back, there we will be with open arms, as strong brothers, to help them find the path and smooth out the effects of errors that they have created through ignorance.” — ROBERT CROSBIE
Wm. Q. Judge was an Adept — a great one, however much the true man was hidden behind the one of clay. Is it reasonable to suppose that at a time when the Great Lodge had for foes the intellectual giants – the Spencers, Mills, Huxleys, and Darwins – of an era the very apotheosis of materialistic agnosticism, they sent tyros or babes to do battle for the world? Nay; they sent their best and bravest; were there no other proof of this, the work accomplished would be sufficient. Right royally did H. P. B. march down to Armageddon; confounding the learned by her wisdom, mocking materialism by her wonderful exhibition of abnormal and at first sight supernatural powers. But she was the Knight errant, who fought amid the beating of drums, and the clash and clamor, the excitement and glory, of a princely tournament. None the less royally did Wm. Q. Judge do his knightly duty on his silent, unnoticed field of battle. His place, his task, it was to teach ethics; to turn aside the craze for phenomena and wonder-working into the more healthy, lasting channels of love for our fellow men. H. P. B. laid the foundations well; but it was left for Wm. Q. Judge to build strongly and safely thereon.
Yet while we reverence the Adept, let us not therefore lose sight of the man, for even in his simplest life he was great. Those who have seen him lay aside every care, and for the moment become the mirth-loving gleeful companion, will not need to be reminded of this beautiful side of his character. To the children and the humble and lowly in the Society, he was a revelation. They heard of him with awe, they approached him with fear and trembling, they instantly recognized their own, and became his sworn friends forever. This was wonderful — how wholly the very humblest in our ranks, who came into his presence personally, loved and trusted him. — JEROME A. ANDERSON
My acquaintance with him dates from 1888; he was the only man I ever met with whom I felt safe in all directions. The depth of his nature as it appeared to me was fathomless. His character was balanced, for he had an all-absorbing ideal; his thoughts and doings emanated from the soul and not from superficial motives. He was careless of the impressions that he might produce by anything he said or did, the personal element being mostly absent, and he was sincere always, unless it was at times when he would permit the surface man to prevail, and submitted to the frolics and idiosyncrasies of his more human nature; but even then there was mastery supreme.
He had the faculty of observing and synthesizing circumstances, persons and events; in fact here I often detected what people sometimes call occult knowledge. He was an occultist; he had the power of self-control, and could subdue the turbulent wanderings of the mind, sit still in the midst of his own nature, supported by his ideal, and view any and every situation dispassionately. What wonder that he saw clearly! In matters Theosophical all his mind and soul was aglow and alive with deepest interest; whatever question or problem arose he would view it starting with his basic ideal of the spiritual unity of all things, the Self; sublime harmony was contained in its comprehension, and a mode of adjustment for everything found in its source.
This philosophy he claimed is brought to view in the book of books, the Bhagavad Gita, and he used to say that the Gita and Secret Doctrine were quite enough for him to attempt to understand and to follow in this life.
He never tired of making things plain and simple.... He was called by some “The Rajah.” I wrote him once at the end of a period of prolonged anxiety, worry and trouble in my affairs, asking what was the lesson to be learned from it, as I could not make the application myself. His reply was: “The lesson is not different from anything in life. It is just Karma, and being applied to large circumstances seems larger, but is in reality no more than the small ones of others. Calmness is the best lesson to learn, with an indifference to results. If all comes right it is well, and if you have been calm and detached then it is better, for you shall have made no new Karma of attachment by it. Calmness also preserves health in all affairs more than anything else, and leaves the mind free to act well.”
From him I learned to disentangle principle from condition. He viewed all questions from the standpoint of the principle or essence that each contained in itself, without reference to personality, and his quick perception of every situation, together with the application of his ideal principles, enabled him to judge correctly at all times.
Whenever his advice was followed on the lines of his own example in any matter in or outside of the Society’s work, it would invariably simplify the most complicated situation; in other words, the standpoint of truth and the establishment of harmony was ever the attitude which he held towards everything he touched. He was non-argumentative, because he thought by argument no one could be finally convinced – each has to hew out his own conviction” – nevertheless he was easily approachable, gentle, sympathetic, but above all strong and powerful, whenever and wherever it was necessary to put in a word at the right time, or to act on the spot. — E. AUGUST NERESHEIMER
To the mystical element in the personality of Mr. Judge, was united the shrewdness of the practised lawyer, the organizing faculty of a great leader, and that admirable common sense, which is so uncommon a thing with enthusiasts. . . . In his teaching was embodied most emphatically that received by the prophet Ezekiel when the Voice said to him: “Stand upon thy feet, and I will speak to thee.”
It was the upright and self-dependent attitude that the Chief insisted upon, and he emphatically discouraged anything that savoured of weakness, of want of self-reliance, or of what H. P. B. was so fond of calling “flap-doodle and gush,” and he turned a face of stern resistance to those who expected to reach the heights he had climbed by clinging to his garments. But when one came to him who really needed aid, no one could be more ready to stretch out a helping hand, to respond with a bright smile of encouragement, to say just the word that was necessary, and no more.
He was the best of friends, for he held you firmly, yet apart. He realized the beautiful description Emerson gives of the ideal friend, in whom meet the two most essential elements of friendship, tenderness and truth. “I am arrived at last,” says Emerson, “in the presence of a man so real and equal... that I may deal with him with the simplicity and wholeness with which one chemical atom meets another.... To a great heart he will still be a stranger in a thousand particulars, that he may come near in the holiest ground.”
Upon that “holiest ground” of devotion to the highest aim, of desire alone for the welfare of others, the Chief was always to be approached. And blended with the undaunted courage, the keen insight, the swift judgment, the endless patience, that made his personality so powerful, were the warm affections, the ready wit, the almost boyish gaiety that made it so lovable....
One of the Chief’s last messages to us said: “They must aim to develop themselves in daily life in small duties.” . . . There was a beautiful story of Rhoecus, who could not recognize in the bee that buzzed about his head the messenger of the Dryad, and so lost her love. — KATHERINE HILLARD
It is necessary that just those souls in whom we have felt most of reality should disappear from us into the darkness, in order that we may learn that not seeing, but inwardly touching, is the true proof that our friend is there; in order that we may learn that the vanishing and dissipation of the outward, visible part, is no impairing or detriment to the real part which is invisible. This knowledge, and the realizing of it in our wills, are gained with the utmost difficulty, at a cost not less than the loss of the best of our friends; yet if the cost be great, the gain is great and beyond estimating, for it is nothing less than a first victory over the whole universe, wherein we come to know that there is that in us which can face and conquer and outlast anything in the universe, and come forth radiant and triumphant from the contest. Yet neither the universe nor death are real antagonists, for they are but only Life everywhere, and we are Life. — CHARLES JOHNSTON
To a greater extent than I have ever realized I know he entered into my life and I am equally sure into the lives of thousands, and this fact I see we are to acknowledge as time passes more and more. . . . He swore no one to allegiance, he asked for no one’s love or loyalty: but his disciples came to him of their own free will and accord, and then he never deserted them. but gave more freely than they asked, and often in greater measure than they could or would use. He was always a little ahead of the occasion, and so was truly a leader. — E. B. RAMBO
Judge was the best and truest friend a man ever had. H. P .B. told me I should find this to be so, and so it was of him whom she, too, trusted and loved as she did no other. And as I think of what those missed who persecuted him, of the loss in their lives, of the great jewel so near to them which they passed by, I turn sick with a sense of their loss: the immense mystery that Life is, presses home to me. In him his foes lost their truest friend out of this life of ours in the body, and though it was their limitations which hid him from them, as our limitations do hide from us so much Spiritual Good, yet we must remember, too, that these limitations have afforded to us and to the world this wonderful example of unselfishness and forgiveness. Judge made the life portrayed by Jesus realizable to me. — ARCHIBALD KEIGHTLEY
William Q. Judge was the nearest approach to my ideal of a MAN that I have known. He was what I want to be. H. P. B. was something more than human. She was a cosmic power. W. Q. J. was splendidly human: and he manifested in a way delightfully refreshing, and all his own, that most rare of human characteristics—genuineness. His influence is continuingly present and powerful, an influence tending steadily, as ever, in one direction—work for the Masters’ Cause. — THOMAS GREEN
I knew him with some degree of intimacy for the past eight years, meeting him often and under varied conditions, and never for one moment on any occasion did he fail to command my respect and affection, and that I should have had the privilege of his acquaintance I hold a debt to Karma. A good homely face and unpretentious manner, a loving disposition, full of kindliness and honest friendship, went with such strong common sense and knowledge of affairs that his coming was always a pleasure and his stay a delight. The children hung about him fondly as he would sit after dinner and draw them pictures. — A. H. SPENCER
What he was to one of his pupils, I believe he was to all—so wide-reaching was his sympathy, so deep his understanding of each heart—and I but voice the feeling of hundreds all over the world when I say that we mourn the tenderest of friends, the wisest of counsellors, the bravest and noblest of leaders. What a man was this, to have been such to people of so widely varying nationalities, opinions and beliefs – to have drawn them all to him by the power of his love – and, in so doing, to have brought them closer to each other. There was no difficulty he would not take infinite pains to unravel, no sore spot in the heart he did not sense and strive to heal. — G. L. G.
Mr. Judge has lived hundreds of lives. So have all men, but very few have any recollection of them. Mr. Judge’s existence has been a conscious one for ages, whether alive or “dead,” sleeping or waking, embodied or disembodied. In the early part of his last life I do not think he was completely conscious twenty-four hours a day, but several years ago he arrived at the stage where he never afterwards lost his consciousness for a moment. Sleep with him merely meant to float out of his body in full possession of all his faculties, and that was also the manner in which he “died” — left his body for good. In other bodies, and known under other names, he has played an important part in the world’s history, sometimes as a conspicuous visible figure. At other times, he worked quietly behind the scenes, or, as in his last life, as a leader in a philanthropical and philosophical movement. — CLAUDE FALLS WRIGHT
W. Q. J.
A SCULPTOR' S APPRECIATION
[The following appeared in the New York Journal, May 7th, 1896, and is an appraisement of our late Chief's character from a standpoint whose merits are recognized by few in the T.S. on this the sceptical side of the Atlantic. In America, phrenology as a scientific method of estimating disposition and ability, is a generally accepted fact, and Mr. Lindstrom, whose remarks, as recorded, appear to be chiefly founded upon phrenological observation, has evidently strong enough belief in this science, to induce him to join the T.S. on its evidence as to a noble character.
Some little acquaintance with phrenology on the part of the writer, and a careful study of such photographs of Mr. Judge as he has been able to obtain, enables him to say that Mr. Lindstrom’s deductions, as reported, appear perfectly accurate, and that if any journalistic embellishments have been introduced, they are so well within the truth as to be indistinguishable from it. — T.]
William Quan Judge, the head of both esoteric and exoteric branches of the Theosophical Society in America, died on March 21st. August Lindstrom, a sculptor, who had never seen Mr. Judge in life, made a cast of the dead man’s head, from which he modelled the bust unveiled at Madison Square Garden during the recent convention of Theosophists. Yesterday Mr. Lindstrom said:
“While making the death mask I was struck by the shape of Mr. Judge’s head, which was utterly unlike anything I had ever seen. Most of the heads of remarkable men show the development of one faculty in particular, or, perhaps, of several, and to the neglect of other faculties. I saw at once that Mr. Judge’s head evidenced a high and uniform development of all the faculties, well-balanced throughout. This is the remarkable combination I found: —A tremendous will power, with an equal development of gentleness; thorough practicability and adaptability conjoined to a highly idealistic nature, and a gigantic intellect hand in hand with selflessness and modesty.
There are only two heads that I know of in history that compare with his—Michael Angelo’s and Savonarola’s. The back of Angelo’s head is almost identical with the back of Mr. Judge’s. There is a difference however, in the forehead.
In addition to the death mask, I had six photographs to assist me in modelling the bust. A comparison of these photographs is a study. One taken at the age of twenty placed by the side of one taken a year ago, when he was about forty-four years old, makes such a contrast that no one would believe they pictured the same person. It shows that by his great will power this man overcame all his youthful tendencies, with the result of completely changing the form of his skull. I make bold to say that another such highly developed head is not to be found between Maine and California. He had only time to plan his work when carried off in his prime by death. Had he lived to the age of seventy his influence would have been felt by the whole nation.”
I consider the nose as giving the best index to character of any feature. His nose was his most distinguishing feature, and shows great power and at the same time complete control over every thought and act, and although strong, it is of the delicate and sensitive type. His mouth showed tenderness and firmness present in equal proportion. His cheek bones also gave evidence of will strength. His hair was soft and showed refinement and gentleness. Taken altogether there was harmonious development, with no defects present, and careful examination of his head from every aspect proves that he was a great and noble man. If such a man as he would devote his life to the Theosophical Society, I think it must have a great mission and I shall ask to be admitted as a member.”
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