Freda Bedi, by Wikipedia

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Re: Freda Bedi, by Wikipedia

Postby admin » Wed Jan 22, 2020 4:32 am

Olaf Caroe
by Wikipedia
Accessed: 1/21/20




Sir. – Recent devastating events in Tibet caused over 15,000 Tibetans to cross the perilous Himalayas into India. It may be a long time before these unfortunate people can safely return to their overrun country. Our own consciences should allow us neither to neglect nor forget them.

The Indian Government has manfully coped with this addition to its own problems at home. In this country we are bound in honour to help relieve needs of the Tibetan refugees, because from 1905 to 1947 there was a special relationship between Tibet and the United Kingdom – a relationship handed on to the new India.

On balance we think it wisest to concentrate chiefly on collecting money which can be used for the benefit of the refugees, not least in the purchase of necessary antibiotics and other medicaments. The Tibet Society has opened a Tibet Relief Fund for which we now appeal in the hope of a generous response. Donations should be sent to the address below or direct to the National Bank Ltd. (Belgravia Branch), 21 Grosvenor Gardens, S.W.I.

Yours faithfully,

... Olaf Caroe ... The Tibet Relief Fund, 58 Eccleston Square, S.W. I., Letter to the Times, July 31, 1959, p.7.

-- Tibet Society, by


Sir Olaf Kirkpatrick Kruuse Caroe KCSI KCIE (15 November 1892 – 23 November 1981) was an administrator in British India, working for the Indian Civil Service and the Indian Political Service. He served as the Foreign Secretary to the Government of India during the World War II and later as the Governor of the North-West Frontier Province. He was a strategist of the Great Game and the Cold War on the southern periphery of the Soviet Union. His ideas have been highly influential in shaping the post-War policies of Britain and the United States, although he was known to have falsified diplomatic records with regard to the 1914 Simla Accord and the McMahon Line, leading to still unresolved boundary disputes between China and India.[1][2][3]

Early life

Olaf Caroe was the son of architect William Douglas Caroe and Grace Desborough Rendall. He was educated at Winchester College and Magdalen College, Oxford,[4] where he read classics. He served in the army in the Punjab in World War I, and joined the Indian Civil Service in 1919.[5]


Caroe subsequently moved to the Indian Political Service, where he was influential in foreign policy. He served as the Foreign Secretary to the Government of India through the World War II. After the war, he was appointed as the Governor of the North-West Frontier Province (NWFP), on the northwest border of the Indian subcontinent, adjoining Afghanistan and Russia.[6]

In 1935, Caroe discovered the secret documents of the 1914 Simla Accord regarding the border between British India and Chinese Tibet. As the Chinese refused to sign the agreement, the official Aitchison's Treaties of 1929 did not include the McMahon Line boundary proposed by the British. However, Caroe successfully lobbied the British government to revise the record and replaced the original edition with a falsified version with the imprint of 1929, which was actually printed in 1938.[1][2][3] The 1940 Times Atlas of the World printed the McMahon Line, which was later adopted by the newly independent India as its official border with China, resulting in a boundary dispute which is still unresolved.[2]

Caroe served as the Governor of the NWFP from 1946 to just before the Partition of India in 1947. Subject to accusations that he was too close to the Muslim League,[7] he encountered opposition from Congress Party politicians,[8] and was replaced in mid-1947 by Rob Lockhart as governor.

Caroe taught many of independent India's first generation of diplomats, including K. P. S. Menon, India's first foreign secretary.[3]

Parappil-Narayana Menon (1920- 22 June 1975),[1] also known as P.N. Menon, was a career diplomat in the Indian Foreign Service. Like his father-in-law, he undertook an overland journey to Lhasa in 1956, on foot and on horseback through the formidable Nathula Pass, to take up his post as India's Consult-General in Tibet. [2]

He was married to Malini, the daughter of first Foreign Secretary of India, K.P.S. Menon.[3] His son is Shivshankar Menon, who as of 2011 was the National Security Advisor to the Prime Minister of India....

P.N. Menon first joined the Indian Foreign Service in 1947.[4] At one point, he served as Consul-General of India in Lhasa, and later served as intermediary to the young Dalai Lama during the 1959 Tibetan uprising.

-- P. N. [Parappil-Narayana] Menon (diplomat), by Wikipedia

He wrote extensively after returning to Britain in 1947.[9] Although many scholars have attempted to correct his distortions and outright forgery,[3] his ideas have been highly influential in shaping the post-War policies of Britain and the United States.[9] He advocated Tibetan independence and supported India in its boundary disputes with China.[3]


• Wells of Power. London: Macmillan. 1951.
• Soviet Empire: The Turks of Central Asia and Stalinism. 1953.
o Reprinted with an additional Introduction. London: Macmillan. 1967.
• The Pathans 550 B.C.–A.D. 1957. Macmillan and Company, London 1958
o Reprinted with a Foreword and an Epilogue on Russia. Karachi: OUP. 1983. ISBN 0-19-577221-0
• From Nile to Indus: Economics and Security in the Middle East. 1960.
• "The Geography and Ethnics of India's Northern Frontiers". The Geographical Journal. 126 (3). 1960.


1. Shah 2015, p. 259.
2. Subramanian, Kadayam (7 April 2017). "Mountain town is the focus of the long-standing Indian-China border dispute". Asia Times. Retrieved 18 January 2020.
3. Marshall 2004, p. xiv.
4. "Personal recollections of Sir Olaf Caroe". university of Leeds Special Collections. Retrieved 2 February 2015.
5. Brobst, The Future of the Great Game 2005, p. xvi.
6. Brobst, Kashmir 1947 1998, p. 93.
7. Wali Khan, Khan Abdul, "Chapter 18: Mountbatten Gets to Work", Facts are sacred, Awami National Party, archived from the original on 18 July 2004
8. Parshotam Mehra, The force Badshah Khan built (review of The Pathan Unarmed: Opposition & Memory in the North West Frontier by Mukulika Banerjee), Tribune India 2 December 2001
9. Rudolph, Lloyd I.; Rudolph, Susanne Hoeber (25 February 2006), "The Making of US Foreign Policy for South Asia" (PDF), Economic and Political Weekly: 703–709, archived from the original(PDF) on 4 September 2006


• Brobst, Peter John (2005), The Future of the Great Game: Sir Olaf Caroe, India's Independence, and the Defense of Asia, University of Akron Press, ISBN 9781931968102
• Brobst, Peter John (March 1998), "Kashmir 1947: Sir Olaf Caroe and the question of British 'Grand Design'", Commonwealth and Comparative Politics, 36 (1): 92–123, doi:10.1080/14662049808447762
• Jha, Prem Shankar (1996), Kashmir, 1947: Rival Versions of History, Oxford University Press, ISBN 978-0-19-563766-3
• Marshall, Julie (2004). Britain and Tibet 1765–1947. Routledge. ISBN 978-1-134-32784-3.
• Panigrahi, D. N. (2009), Jammu and Kashmir, the Cold War and the West, Routledge, ISBN 978-1-136-51751-8
• Shah, S K (2015). India and China: The Battle between Soft and Hard Power. Vij Books India. ISBN 978-93-85505-28-7.

External links

• Noorani, A. G. (6 May 2006), "Caroe's lessons (review of The Future of The Great Game: Sir Olaf Caroe, India's Independence, and the Defense of Asia by Peter John Brobst)", Frontline, retrieved 18 May 2018
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Re: Freda Bedi, by Wikipedia

Postby admin » Wed Jan 22, 2020 5:24 am

Part 1 of 2

Translating Tibet in the Borderlands: Networks, Dictionaries, and Knowledge Production in Himalayan Hill Stations
by Emma Martin
University of Manchester



Borderland texts

No country in the world has exercised a more potent influence on the imagination of men or presented such fascinating problems for solution to the explorer as Tibet; and this influence has been active amongst all the generations which have exploited the byways of the earth from the days of Herodotus to those of Younghusband.

— Thomas Holdich[1]

Introducing his account on Tibet and exploration, Thomas Holdich (1843–1929), a British India government geographer decorated for his map and boundary making, pinpointed a problem that has troubled those wanting to know something of Tibet since the first accounts of giant gold-digging ants appeared in the pages of Herodotus’ The Histories.[2] Concrete facts had always been hard to come by. This was still the case during the decades that spanned the turn of the twentieth century. Even claims that the veil over this once mysterious place had been lifted, made by members of the Francis Younghusband-led Mission to Lhasa in 1903–1904, were short-lived.[3] Once British Indian troops and their loot left Lhasa in September 1904, access to central Tibet’s capital yet again became a thing of dreams. Therefore, all kinds of information relating to Tibet, its culture, political systems, and language, needed to be made somewhere else. In many cases, those seeking such things came to Darjeeling and Kalimpong, the British hill stations of north-eastern India.

Despite the diminutive size of Darjeeling and Kalimpong, these borderland towns have recently been reconsidered using Mary Louise Pratt’s definition of a “contact zone.”[4] Pratt highlights the phenomenon of transculturation in such places, using contact zones to explode the myth of the lone traveller and, more widely, colonial travel writing, something she calls “imperial meaning-making.”[5] Taking this concept into the Himalayas, I will show that colonial officers did not have control over knowledge production, especially in relation to Tibet. Instead, using the texts produced in the hill stations, and their acknowledgements, silences, and contested claims of authorship, I will show that despite citing the colonial officer’s name as author, no such monopoly over scholarly understanding existed. As Pratt also notes, “People on the receiving end of European imperialism did their own knowing and interpretation…using European tools.”[6] Transculturation, here understood as a process of selecting, contesting, and inventing from materials transmitted by colonialism, provides a useful framework for working out how those tools could be used to one’s own advantage, whilst also being used to suppress.

Yet Darjeeling and Kalimpong and their borderland position in the British Empire present the opportunity to think not just about transculturation, but also transculturality, a subtle but crucial difference. Mobility plays an important role in Himalayan hill stations and such connectivity occupies an important place for Bennesaieh when she defines the separation between transculturation and transculturality. The difference for her comes from “the sense of movement and the complex mixedness of cultures in close contact,” and “the embodied situation of cultural plurality lived by many individuals and communities of mixed heritage and/or experience...” these dynamic qualities produce a subtle shift in the colonial makeup of specific locations, especially those on the edges.[7] This definition speaks very pointedly to Darjeeling and Kalimpong, places that were home not only to diverse local populations, but also to continually shifting groups of people. From the plains came British colonial officers, Scottish tea planters, missionaries, and both European and Bengali tourists. These groups were then knitted to those who came from beyond India’s British-controlled borderlands; Nepali settlers, Bhutanese commercial agents, Tibetan, Kashmiri, and Ladakhi traders and pilgrims, Tibetan Buddhist scholars, and not forgetting a host of spies and intelligence gatherers from Russia and China. As transcultural alliances were so obvious here, I want to propose that Darjeeling and Kalimpong also had features of a particular kind of cosmopolitanism.

A useful way of assessing the Himalayan hill station as a potential cosmopolitan centre is to compare its characteristics to a better studied and generally recognised site of cosmopolitanism, the Early Modern Mediterranean port city. The checklist offered by Henk Driessen for port city cosmopolitanism includes “[T]he substantial presence of ethnic trading minorities; a general enterprising atmosphere; linguistic and religious plurality; openness and tolerance; considerable economic growth; common interests across ethnic boundaries; a basic education system modelled after the [...] English systems; and vast commercial, social, and cultural networks.”[8] I believe that Darjeeling and Kalimpong were the borderland equivalent of the Early Modern Mediterranean port because of, rather than despite, their colonial foundations. For those who travelled to these hill stations to learn, trade, and explore, they became land-locked entrepôts, which also acted as proxies for Tibet.

Although trade fostered a sense of cosmopolitanism in the port cities discussed by Driessen, it is late nineteenth- and early twentieth-century colonial anxieties and the products of these uncertainties that dictated both the types of cultural and intellectual exchange that took place there and the agents that facilitated it. The Mission to Lhasa represented the culmination of British anxieties in Tibet’s borderlands.[9] Yet, these anxieties emerged already in 1835 as the British extended their colonial reach and interest in Tibet, beginning with the annexation of Darjeeling from the Chögyal (Tibetan chos rgyal), or king of Sikkim. This upward movement into the hills pushed back existing frontiers and entangled the British in very different encounters from those they were familiar with on the Indian plains. Not only were the politics and power-bases different, ensuring that the British became embroiled in regional struggles with Bhutan, Nepal, Sikkim, and Tibet over fluid and often contested boundaries, but so too was the language. The British now had to make sense of new intelligence and new sources and this need to know was heightened by British concerns about influences at play beyond the Himalayas. Looking out from the newly created hill stations of British India, the British could only speculate on the persuasive powers of other empires that had influence in Tibet, namely China, but increasingly also Russia. With Tibet soon to be identified as a British India “buffer zone,” collating sources on this place and finding cultural brokers who could decipher them suddenly became paramount.

As Mantena lays out in her work on Indian historiography, the production of colonial dictionaries and grammars in local languages, aimed specifically at colonial officers rather than native speakers, was often the first sign that a potential colonizer intended to know or control knowledge over a place or people.[10] Furthermore, travelogues, especially those written as a part of diplomatic or missionary practices, acted as proto-ethnographies providing information on local practices that new recruits could expect to encounter. As Mantena shows in her treatment of the first Surveyor General of India, Colin Mackenzie (1754–1821), and as Pratt asserts in Imperial Eyes, travelling to familiarize oneself with places was a powerful practice. It brought distinction and occasionally fame to those who surveyed previously unmapped lands. But in many cases, access to specific sites of cultural and political interest was restricted. For a localised context, Mantena shows that the British did not have the knowledge necessary to gain access to villages in South India; they needed cultural brokers, or as she calls them, local intellectuals, to do that. She also shows the colonial context of these obstacles when she says, “It would have been virtually impossible to gain entry into localities without inducing fear and, potentially, anger at the blatant intrusion into their inner cultural worlds.”[11]

In the Tibetan context the barriers were not just at the village level; they prevented access to a large part of a country that was perched right on the colonial doorstep. Tibet enforced tight boundary controls and, as the return of an unopened letter from the Viceroy of India to Tibet’s Dalai Lama in 1899 illustrates, Tibet had no interest in building links with the British prior to 1903–1904. The idea that Darjeeling and Kalimpong acted as proxies for Tibet is very real here, as these closed borders created intellectual bottlenecks in the hill stations. Although those from Himalayan worlds could travel freely into British India, those arriving from the plains did not have such freedom to travel into Tibet. Yet these physical barriers did not prevent the writing of histories, ethnographic studies, travelogues, and dictionaries on the subject of Tibet. It simply meant that the British collected information in different ways. Unlike the dragoman of the Mediterranean, who may be understood as a locally fixed resource for traders who relied on them in port cities (although of course many dragomans travelled), the local intellectuals of the Himalaya were highly mobile. They brought the sources and the cultural savoir-faire to the borderlands, sometimes covertly. The only alternative for the British was to collect information in the Tibetan spaces that were part of the hill station’s cosmopolitan make-up—a practice that was employed on a regular basis.

By the 1880s, scholars working on Tibetan subjects from Sikkim, the Bengal plains, Mongolia, Norway, Germany, Moravia, and Tibet were living and working in Darjeeling and Kalimpong alongside scholar-administrators from British India. Their presence was noticed by a somewhat motley group of spiritual seekers, explorers, spies, museum curators, and future Tibetologists from the Ukraine, Japan, Russia, Scotland, Germany, the United States, France, and England. These individuals sought out the hill stations and their resident scholars in the hope of learning the Tibetan language, of collecting texts and objects for their museums and libraries, or for the purpose of gaining secret or privileged knowledge about political, religious, or geographical matters. The period from the 1880s to the 1920s was a fertile time for knowledge production in the eastern Himalayas. It saw many breakthrough publications about Tibet and its language, many of which are still referenced to this day. This makes the decades preceding and following the Mission to Lhasa a productive site for thinking about networks of knowledge production in the hill stations of the eastern Himalayas.

None of this was unique to Darjeeling and Kalimpong. Similar communities were at work in Tibetan borderland sites separated by vast distances, each with its own specific network and raison d’être. In Lahul, on India’s north-western border with Tibet, the Moravian Christian missionaries were particularly visible through their publications. Heinrich August Jäschke (1817–1883) compiled A Romanized Tibetan and English Dictionary in 1866, followed by a number of grammars and word books as well as his acclaimed A Tibetan-English Dictionary, With Special Reference to the Prevailing Dialects in 1881. Along Tibet’s eastern border with China, anthropologists and missionaries of German descent from North America established themselves as pioneers of Tibetan scholarship through proto-ethnographies and field-collecting for museums. Again, early missionary networks are most visible in these areas, where the Canadian Dr. Susie Rijnhart wrote up her ill-fated travels across the borderlands between 1895 and 1899.[12] The anthropologist Berthold Laufer, working in the same area, collected more than four thousand objects in northern Kham (Tibetan khams) for the Chicago Field Museum. On his arrival in 1909, he met the American Albert Shelton (1875–1922), Rijnhart’s colleague in the Foreign Christian Missionary Society. Shelton was based in the frontier towns of Tachienlu (also known as Dartsedo, Tibetan dar rtse mdo) and Batang (Tibetan ’ba’ thang). On periodic furloughs in the United States he lectured widely to potential missionary recruits on Tibetan subjects. He also wrote journal articles and travelogues, and amassed an unprecedented collection of objects for the Newark Museum in New Jersey, leaving the museum with one of the world’s great Tibet collections.[13] Diplomatic networks were also present on Tibet’s eastern edges. Notable amongst them was William Woodville Rockhill (1854–1914), America’s first Tibetologist, who learnt Tibetan in Europe, took up a position at the U.S. Legation in Peking in 1883, and from there undertook trips to Tibetan and Mongolian cultural areas.

Fig. 1: Walter Yeeling Evan-Wentz and Kazi Dawa Samdup, taken in Gantok around 1919. Courtesy of the University of Manchester.

It is clear that while Tibet was off-limits, colonial and missionary agencies of various kinds and sizes believed that its borderlands and especially its centres of trade, with many people passing through, were valuable sites for conducting Tibet-related research. The associated individuals might appear isolated from each other, stationed as they were in such remote locations across the Tibetan borderlands, be it in Ladakh, Batang, Darjeeling, or Kalimpong. Their publications, however, show that they collaborated, corrected, edited, and exchanged their work, revealing extended networks of knowledge production on Tibet’s borderlands.

Contested forms of colonial knowledge

In times of old it was not considered that the mere knowledge of language sufficed to make a man a “translator” in any serious sense of the word; no one would have undertaken to translate a text who had not studied it for long years at the feet of a traditional and authoritative exponent of its teaching [...].

— Lama Anagarika Govinda[14]

In his introduction to The Tibetan Book of the Dead, Lama Anagarika Govinda, a German-born devotee and teacher of Tibetan Buddhism and meditation, uses a passage from Hindusim and Buddhism by the Sri Lankan philosopher and historian Ananda Kentish Coomaraswamy (1877–1947) to articulate the complexities and pitfalls of doing research and writing on a culture that was not one’s own.[15] He voiced his disquiet over the production of Orientalist knowledge, “especially [...] in the realm of Tibetology, which such scholars have approached with an air of their own superiority.”[16] The Lama was openly critical of European men trying to produce reputable tomes, as his experiences showed him that they were often ill-equipped to do so. He further believed that these men had written their books using knowledge of others without acknowledging their contribution. Kazi Dawa Samdup (Dousandup, 1868–1923) (figure 1), the Sikkim school headmaster and later university lecturer, was the actual and acknowledged translator of The Tibetan Book of the Dead that was published under the name of Evans-Wentz. If he had lived to see its publication he would have easily recognised the sentiments behind the Lama’s criticism. When he reflected upon his own philological project, An English-Tibetan Dictionary, which was published in 1919, he felt, “The work could only be undertaken by a person whose mother tongue was Tibetan, or a dialect of Tibetan—in short, one who thought in Tibetan.”[17]

Driessen thought it unlikely that one would finda dragoman equivalent, “in mountains or inland towns,”[18] but in Darjeeling and Kalimpong they were highly visible. Despite their critical role in the colonial cosmopolitanism of the eastern Himalayas, they have received little scholarly attention beyond a general acknowledgement of their importance. While a wide body of research has been devoted to the contributions of pre-colonial and Early Modern cultural brokers, there has been little interest in those who continued to work with the British at the height of Empire. This article addresses this imbalance, highlighting the continuing reliance of colonial officers on local intellectuals and the multiple ways that their contributions were used and then mostly passed over in silence.

I will study the interaction between those who thought in Tibetan (and, just as importantly, in colonial English) and those Europeans who needed their site-specific expertise. Focusing on certain Darjeeling-based partnerships, I also offer insights into the recurring patterns of knowledge production. Alliances between British officers and European and American scholars on the one side, and families of local intellectuals on the other, were continually renewed from the mid-nineteenth century onwards. They enabled Europeans to produce reliable and trustworthy publications and reports for colonial agencies and the general public, but also to make a name for themselves as Tibetan scholars.[19] Such a charting of scholarly practice is understood by Tibetans as a “genealogy of knowledge”. Returning to Mantena, she has noted that it is often difficult to trace these intellectual relationships back across generations to their origins.[20] Yet, while these tracings are problematic and scant, they are nevertheless useful as they lead us to question what we think we know about imperial knowledge production and its processes. These scholarly relationships, often portrayed as serendipitous or singular, as a product of a moment in time, were nothing of the sort in this Himalayan context. Instead, certain families were targeted generation after generation by colonial officers and “rewarded”—within heavy colonial constraints—for the research skills they made available. These intellectual relationships, which reflect the “soft” power of colonialism, not only sustained and maintained both Himalayan and colonial power structures, but they also secured personal prestige and future mobility for the individuals involved. These scholarly abilities offered many complex benefits, inasmuch as both colonial officers and local intellectuals had something to gain from working with each other.

Genealogies of knowledge: Dictionaries in Darjeeling and Kalimpong

As for the language, though there have been several gallant attempts to plunge into the labyrinthine obscurities of its construction—notably on the part of Alexander Csoma de Körös in 1834 and subsequently of H. A. Jäschke—that also, it must be confessed, remains more or less a mystery; for no one, I take it, is likely to aver that the present state of our knowledge on the subject is at all satisfactory.

— H. B. Hannah[21]

Almost eighty years after the Hungarian Alexander Csoma de Körös (1784–1842) had completed his Tibetan-English dictionary in Ladakh (he would die of malaria in Darjeeling in 1842 as he waited to travel to Lhasa),[22] and three decades after Jäschke had completed his dictionary in 1881, Herbert Bruce Hannah, a Calcutta high court judge, felt that foreigners were still scrambling in the dark when it came to the Tibetan language.[23] He had some authority to speak on the matter as he had just published his own Tibetan grammar. Despite authoring this volume he did not claim that his work was definitive, but instead modestly explained in his grammar’s preface that this was merely a compilation of his classroom notes, scribbled down as his tutor, the “intelligent and scholarly Tibetan,” Kazi Dawa Samdup, taught him the basics of the Tibetan language.[24] In the preface to his own work, the aforementioned An English-Tibetan Dictionary, Samdup notes that this was a pupil-teacher relationship that had lasted for more than a decade.[25]

Hannah validated his own small contribution to Tibetan language translations by outlining his own genealogy of knowledge, in order to give his readers an intellectual lineage or scholarly framework for this new publication. He listed those whose work he had studied and from whom he had borrowed; those who had personally taught him; and those who had sponsored him, edited his work, and encouraged him. Hannah clearly considered himself part of a global network of scholars who were attempting to provide access to the Tibetan language. Alongside Csoma de Körös and the Moravian Jäschke, Hannah would also cite the Tibetan dictionaries, grammars, and manuals of the Irishman Vincent Henderson (1873–n.d.), who worked for the Chinese Maritime Customs Office and was stationed in Tibet; the Bengali Rai Bahadur Sarat Chandra Das (1849–1917); and the British Reverend Graham Sandberg (1851–1905), who worked with Das on his monumental dictionary project (see below); and finally, the Norwegian missionary Edvard Amundsen (1873–1928) from the China Inland Mission, who, like Das and Sandberg, was stationed in Darjeeling. His sponsors, who also supported his tutor’s publication seven years later, were the Bengali vice-chancellor of Calcutta University, Sir Ashutosh Mukerjee (1864–1924) and the English Orientalist and linguist Sir Edward Denison Ross (1871–1940), who had not only established the first Tibetan language department in India at Calcutta University, but was to become the first director of the School of Oriental Studies (later renamed the SOAS) in London in 1916.[26]

For Hannah, this genealogy not only embedded him in an emerging community of Tibetan Studies scholars, but by citing the names of two of Darjeeling’s preeminent academics, Kazi Dawa Samdup and the Scottish-Sikkimese David Macdonald (1870–1962), he was also authenticating the intellectual worth of his publication for this growing network. Previously, Csoma de Körös had acknowledged the work of Sangye Phuntsog, a lama from Zangla monastery in Ladakh, whose contribution had been critical for the completion of his 1834 dictionary, while Jäschke had entrusted the editing of his Tibetan translation of the New Testament to none other than Macdonald, whom Hannah described as “probably the first Tibetan scholar in India.”[27] In Hannah’s case the names of the two men he acknowledged would have been recognisable to many of his readers, as both not only had distinctive careers, but would be instrumental for the intellectual progress of several early Tibetologists.

It was no coincidence that Macdonald, Samdup, and Hannah were active in Darjeeling at this time. There had certainly been more than a few gallant attempts to dispel the fairy tales circulating about the Tibetan language since the middle of the nineteenth century by an emerging and closely connected group of scholars. Looking closely at who was doing the dispelling, it is possible to trace these genealogies back into the nineteenth century and see them continued by a further generation of Darjeeling scholars in the twentieth century. While certainly incomplete, this genealogy still provides important insights into the significant part certain local families played in the imperial project.

The 1879 A Manual of Tibetan by Thomas Herbert Lewin (1839–1916) is a useful place to start this mapping process as its title page gives us the name of the man at the root of this Darjeeling-based intellectual family tree.[28] When Lewin arrived in Darjeeling as Deputy Commissioner in October 1877, he had served as a British Indian Army officer for more than a decade in several Hill Tracts of north-eastern India. He compiled this manual using the same procedure as that used for his Progressive colloquial exercises in the Lushai dialect of the “Dzo” or Kúki language, which he had compiled for the Lushai Hills in 1874. It consists of a series of increasingly complex dialogues to develop the skills necessary to speak colloquial Tibetan. While the Lushai Hills manual did not mention the people who helped in the compilation, A Manual of Tibetan claimed the authority and help of “Yapa Uygen Gyatsho, a learned lama of the monastery of Pemiongchi.” Lama Ugyen Gyatso (1851–c.1915) was a well-known and respected monk in Darjeeling, who had come from Pemayangtse (Tibetan Padma g.yang tse) Monastery in Sikkim. His family owned estates in southern Sikkim and had served the Sikkim Chögyals for several generations.[29] He had just completed twelve years of study at Pemayangtse when in 1873 he travelled with the eighth Chögyal, Sidkeong Namgyal (1819–1874), to Darjeeling. In discussions with British officers the Chögyal personally recommended Ugyen Gyatso for the post of Tibetan language teacher at a new British India enterprise, the Bhutia Boarding School that was to open in Darjeeling in the following year (figure 2).

Fig. 2: Staff and students of the Bhutia Boarding School, Darjeeling, 1888. Private collection. Sarat Chandra Das is standing, third from the left, and Ugyen Gyatso is seated in the back row, fifth from the right.

The school’s proclaimed aim was to provide an education in both Tibetan and English, as well as in religion and subjects such as mathematics, preparing the boys for work in British India’s government institutions. Tacitly, it was also considered a finishing school for potential pundits, the covert surveyors of Tibet. The pundits, a small elite group of Indian and Himalayan men (chosen because they could pass as Tibetans), were trained by officers from the Great Trigonometrical Survey of India to map territories beyond the Indian borders. Using their paces to measure distance, and modified Tibetan religious objects as surveying equipment, they mapped previously uncharted lands and collected texts and objects that could help decipher the cultural and political features of the area.[30] Ugyen Gyatso and the school’s young Bengali headmaster Sarat Chandra Das would lead by example, cooperating as pundits.

Ugyen Gyatso’s own monastic mission as Pemayangtse envoy to Tashi Lhunpo monastery in southern Tibet in 1878 paved the way for Das’s covert travels to Tibet, first in 1879 and again in 1881–1882. Ugyen Gyatso accompanied Das on both these expeditions acting as “secretary, collector, and surveyor.”[31] His survey work in Tibet would be confirmed by the topographical drawings made by the British officer Laurence Austine Waddell (1854–1938) in 1904 (see below), and when the Swedish explorer and collector Sven Hedin (1865–1952) perused the survey, he concluded that Ugyen Gyatso was “exceptionally intelligent and a conscientious topographer.”[32] The more than two hundred manuscripts Ugyen Gyatso collected for Das would form the basis for Das’s highly confidential government reports;[33] for his descriptive account of his second mission, Journey to Lhasa and Central Tibet (1902)—which would coincidentally fall victim to the American Diplomat and Tibetologist William Woodville Rockhill’s heavy-handed editing;[34] and, of particular interest here, his much referenced 1902 A Tibetan-English Dictionary with Sanskrit Synonyms.

Das hoped that his dictionary would “assist European scholars in the thorough exploration of the vast literature of Tibet,”[35] perhaps a reference to the events that had secured funding for his publication. To gain support for the expected substantial costs of developing this dictionary, Das asked Sir Alfred Croft (1841–1925), the Director of Public Instruction in British India at the time, for support. He approached Croft, a long-time supporter of Das as well as a member of the team that edited and prepared the pundit reports for the government, at the perfect moment. Shortly before, the German philologist and Orientalist Max Müller (1823–1900) had written to Croft in Calcutta from his new base in Scotland that there was a need for an English translation of a Sanskrit-Tibetan work on Buddhist terminology.[36] As a result, Das’s tri-lingual translation project was approved. Thirteen years later, as Das sat down to write his preface in his Darjeeling home, “Lhasa Villas,” he quoted at length from the 1834 preface to Csoma de Körös dictionary to establish his own scholarly lineage for his growing audience. Das’s acknowledgements of his own intellectual debts, however, are more important as they both reveal and withhold the details of the entangled colonial networks responsible for the dictionary’s production.

The group of men Das credited in his preface reflect the range of European agencies working on dictionaries in Darjeeling. It also becomes clear that several contributors had moved to Darjeeling, creating a critical mass of colonial scholarly knowledge. The aforementioned clergyman and scholar Sandberg was a chaplain in Calcutta, but he also worked on Tibetan translations for the British India government. It was he who wrote the translation of the then Viceroy Curzon‘s ill-fated letter to the thirteenth Dalai Lama in 1900, which was returned unopened.[37] The Moravian scholar-missionary Reverend Augustine William (Wilhelm) Heyde (1825–1907) moved to Darjeeling in 1898 specifically to work on Das’s dictionary after having spent fifty years at the mission in Kyelang, Lahul.[38] Working alongside both these men was Sanskrit specialist Professor Satish Chandra Acharya from a college in Krishnagar, West Bengal. He had met Das while translating Pali texts for the Buddhist Text Society.[39] There were also several other scholars whom Das chose not to acknowledge, but who worked with him throughout or for extended periods. These included the already-noted Ugyen Gyatso and the Darjeeling-based Mongolian scholar Lama Sherab Gyatso (c. 1820–after 1902).[40]

We can see the web of connections that led back to Ugyen Gyatso and the effect of his expertise on his colonial contemporaries, but what impact did he have on future generations of local scholarship? A third unacknowledged contributor to Das’s dictionary was a young Bhutia scholar, Sonam Wangfel Laden La (1876–1936), who had his first posting for the British India government in Darjeeling as an Apprentice Compositor in the Government Press. This was an enterprise set up solely to support Das’s dictionary project, and Laden La worked under the supervision of Sherab Gyatso. Laden La had been groomed for empire from his school days. Trained as an imperial cultural and diplomatic broker, he had the ability to bridge the gaps between local and colonial ways of knowing. He was also Ugyen Gyatso’s nephew. Laden La was chosen to carry on the relationship already established between his pro-British family and the colonial officers stationed there.[41] He held several posts in the Imperial Police Service, for which he became well known to future researchers of Anglo-Tibetan relations.[42] But he was also a gifted translator who, like David Macdonald, would become an Examiner in the Tibetan language for the British India government. As a Bhutia Boarding School pupil, Macdonald had also studied under Ugyen Gyatso. Thus his influence continued as Laden La and Macdonald began editing dictionaries with a new generation of colonial officers.

Filed in amongst a collection of Laden La’s private papers is a “tentative edition” of a twenty-four page booklet authored by Sikkim’s then Assistant Political Officer, (later Sir) Charles Bell (1870–1945), entitled Tibetan Glossary and Rules for Transliteration from Tibetan into Roman Characters. Published in 1904, this was Bell’s first attempt at making the Tibetan language comprehensible for himself and his future fellow officers. Its publication would also signal Bell’s intention to make a name for himself as someone knowledgeable in Tibetan-related affairs. Bell had arrived in Darjeeling in 1900 and, as he recalled much later, “I saw much, yet understood but little (at first).”[43] This rather unassuming start would lead to an illustrious diplomatic career in the borderlands, coupled with a reputation for Tibetan scholarship. Bell’s direct superior and mentor, Ernest Herbert Cooper Walsh (1865–1952), the new Deputy Commissioner for Darjeeling, was quick to introduce his assistant to the scholarly landscape of Darjeeling. By late 1904 both men were stationed in Yatung, Chumbi valley, in the new British Trade Agency that had been created by the British following the pressurised treaty negotiations conducted by Younghusband in Lhasa. Walsh had just returned from Lhasa with his designated translator and assistant, Laden La, and was passing the time by working on A Vocabulary of the Tromowa Dialect of Tibetan spoken in the Chumbi Valley, which was published in 1905. Before Walsh submitted his manuscript, the vocabulary was edited by Macdonald, while Laden La compiled the Sikkimese words that featured in a separate glossary.

As dictionary writing was clearly in the air, Bell shared a copy of his “tentative edition” with Laden La, who in turn “scribbled notes which Bell used in subsequent editions.”[44] Although this small effort did not make it to full publication, Bell’s enlarged and corrected version developed into a more ambitious project, the 1905 Manual of Colloquial Tibetan, for which Hannah reserved his most effusive praise in his 1912 preface. This, like Walsh’s vocabulary, not only took into account Laden La’s comments, but was shaped to a great extent by Macdonald.[45] A now familiar practice shows Bell establishing his credentials by referring in his acknowledgements to the community of scholars with whom he had studied and worked. Macdonald featured prominently. “[M]y thanks are due to Mr. David Macdonald, who has revised this book throughout, and to whose unrivalled knowledge of both colloquial and literary Tibetan are largely due whatever merits the work may possess.”[46] The intellectual fingerprints of Ugyen Gyatso are clear to see.

As already noted, this sudden rise in the production of dictionaries in Darjeeling was part of a wider information gathering project that occupied the British India government at the turn of the twentieth century. As British India pushed its frontiers further outwards, the large number of government-sponsored publications rolling off the printing presses made its very particular interest in Tibet visible. The political basis for this need to understand the Tibetan language is further illustrated by the last dictionary briefly under discussion.

Fig. 3: Johnston and Hoffman, Tibetan Delegation at Hastings House, Calcutta, 16 March 1910. Photograph, 350 x 495mm. Liverpool, National Museums, Charles Alfred Bell Collection, 50.31.133. Laden La (far left, standing), Tashi Wangdi (second from left, standing), Charles Bell (third from left, seated next to the Dalai Lama), Gungthang Shapé (seated, far right).

Tashi Wangdi’s 1909 Tibetan-English-Hindi Guide was sponsored by the Bengal government and was conceived during a crucial moment in the diplomatic contact between China, Tibet, and British India.[47] The 1908 conference held in Calcutta brought the three parties together in order to rework the unilateral treaty signed in 1904 in the Potala by Younghusband and the Tibetan representative, the Ganden Tripa (Tibetan Dga‘ ldan khri pa). Tashi Wangdi was appointed as translator for the conference, but the difficulties in defining specific words and their significance led the Chinese representative, Chang Yin-tang, the High Commissioner of the Imperial Chinese Mission to India, and his Tibetan counterpart, Tsarong Shapé (born Wangchuk Gyalpo, d.1911 in Lhasa), one of the Chief Ministers of Tibet, to co-commission this Guide to facilitate future diplomatic encounters. While Wangdi continued the practice of acknowledging his influences by naming Bell as part of its genealogy, he had his own intermediary on whom he relied for editing and proofing. This was a Tibetan from Lhasa, Gungthang Shapé (born, Tenzin Wangpo, d.1911 in Darjeeling), who was later described as “a sort of confidential agent of the Dalai Lama” and who by 1908 already had more than a decade’s worth of experience in Anglo-Tibetan borderland talks (figure 3).[48]

In his dictionary’s preface, Wangdi makes another requirement for scholarly authority visible. It was not enough to produce Tibetan-related research in the borderlands. It was even more highly regarded if it could be authenticated by somebody from Lhasa.

Lhasa vs. local: The authenticity of knowledge

The previous attempts at the systematic exploration of the subject of Lamaism had been made by writers who had not themselves been in personal contact with Tibet and Tibetan Lamas. They were mere compilers at second hand of miscellaneous notes and tales of travellers, who themselves had visited mostly mere outlying provinces of “The Closed Land.”

— Laurence Austine Waddell[49]

One might be forgiven for thinking that the author of The Buddhism of Tibet; or, Lamaism, Laurence Austine Waddell, the “Sanitary Commissioner” for Darjeeling and later “Antiquarian to the Force” during the Mission to Lhasa, had spent an extended and rare period of research in Tibet in the latter stages of the nineteenth century. Although Waddell tells us he made three attempts to “evade the Tibetan frontier guards and penetrate some distance into ‘The Closed Land’ itself,”[50] he nevertheless ended up finding his research site much closer to home. Despite his bombastic claims, his personal collecting sites were not in Tibet, but in the Tibetan Buddhist monasteries of Darjeeling and Sikkim. These places were clearly not closed lands; their contents could be surveyed and collected at a more considered pace because these, as Waddell himself tells us, “were freely accessible to European sight-seers.”[51]

Waddell, like many of his colonial contemporaries, also wrote a dictionary soon after his arrival in Darjeeling,[52] but my interest here is not in his philological studies, but in how he chose to authenticate his scholarly work. Like Das, Waddell was at the front line of collecting and recording in Darjeeling, acting as “the man on the spot” for some of Britain’s leading anthropologists. As a member of the Royal Anthropological Institute in London, his networks connected him to men prominent during the “museum period” in the burgeoning professionalization of anthropology in the late nineteenth century.[53] As a result, his research formed a significant portion of The Gazetteer of Sikhim (1894), a volume edited by Herbert Hope Risley, British India’s leading anthropologist. This, was soon followed by Waddell’s own influential work, The Buddhism of Tibet or Lamaism (1895), for which he made extensive use of the manuscripts and religious objects in his collection.[54] Having established his own position as an authority on “Lamaism,” he briefly took up a professorship of Tibetan at University College London (1906–1908) upon his return to England a decade later.

Waddell felt that the speculations about Buddhism by philosophers such as Arthur Schopenhauer (1788–1860) warranted the publication of a book like The Buddhism of Tibet. There was little competition. In fact, Waddell could only think of works on the subject by Karl Friedrich Köppen (1808–1863) and the explorer Emil Schlagintweit (1835–1904), that were long out of print. Proclaiming that his own publication now filled a gaping void in the world’s knowledge on Tibetan Buddhism, he was particularly patronising towards Schlagintweit, writing that his work, “however admirable with respect to the time of its appearance, was admittedly fragmentary, as its author had never been in contact with Tibetans.”[55]

How did Waddell convince his own readership that his new publication on Tibet was a significant advance, that it was not based on peripheral knowledge, but that it offered informed research rather than speculation? How did he do this when, despite his unauthorised attempts, he had not managed to stay in Tibet for any considerable amount of time? Waddell chose to anchor the authenticity of his information to central Tibet. In carefully explaining his research methodologies he stressed that those who sourced and translated texts for him came directly from Lhasa and Tashi Lhunpo monastery in Shigatse and not from the Himalayan hill stations to which he was restricted.

[By] engaging a small staff of Lamas in the work of copying manuscripts, and searching for texts bearing upon my researches. Enjoying in these ways special facilities for penetrating the reserve of Tibetan ritual, and obtaining direct from Lhasa and Tashi-lhunpo most of the objects and explanatory material needed, I have elicited much information on Lamaist theory and practice which is altogether new.[56]

In short, if he could not go to Lhasa, then Lhasa would come to him. Rather than travelling to build knowledge and cultural understanding on a subject Waddell instead relied upon the mobility of the material, textual and oral sources to do the travelling for him. The men who travelled specifically for Waddell and those who arrived to Darjeeling and became sources for Waddell illustrate the entangled reasons for their presence in Darjeeling. Waddell noted in his book’s preface that he was greatly assisted by “the learned Tibetan Lama, Padma Chhö Phél; by that venerable scholar the Mongolian Lama She-rab Gya-ts'ö; by the Ñin-ma Lama, Ur-gyän Gya-ts’ö, head of the Yang-gang monastery of Sikhim and a noted explorer of Tibet; by Tun-yig Wang-dan and Mr. Dor-je Ts'e-ring; by S'ad-sgra S'ab-pe, one of the Tibetan governors of Lhasa.”[57] Besides the now familiar names of Ugyen Gyatso and Sherab Gyatso, the lamas resident in Darjeeling and working for the British government, there is a Chief Minister of Tibet and his secretary sent to Darjeeling for treaty negotiations with the British and a further “Tibetan lama” who Waddell forgets to note is also a teacher at the Bhutia Boarding School in Darjeeling.[58] While Waddell’s authentic sources may well have come from Lhasa and Shigatse, the list of names demonstrates that it was still the responsibility of those stationed in Darjeeling to make them accessible.

Waddell shows how critical it was to give knowledge credence by suggesting that it came from Lhasa, especially for those wanting to establish their credentials as burgeoning scholars of Tibet. The scholarship of decades past had, to Waddell’s mind, been characterised by recycled and repackaged fragmentary facts on Tibet garnered from a range of sources. Like those in the process of producing dictionaries, Waddell realised that to make one’s reputation there must instead be a claim to new information from an untapped and inaccessible place, in this case a fabled “closed land” like Tibet, and more specifically, Lhasa. The snag here was that the number of people who had made it to Lhasa could be counted on one hand. If one could not reach Lhasa oneself, connections to knowledgeable people who had were vital if the author wanted to have any hope of validating his claims to be a Tibetan expert.

Waddell typified the thinking of those stationed in the eastern Himalayas. There were vast tracts of Tibet still unknown to Europeans based in India, but the focus was firmly on Lhasa, a place that Charles Bell, when he finally arrived there in 1920, would describe as “the heart of it all.”[59] After Bell’s move to Kalimpong in 1901 to take up the post of Settlement Officer,[60], he made it clear that colonial officers were well aware of the value of knowledge from and about Lhasa. Opinions and practices from the borderlands may be valuable for the colonial officers stationed there, but they also considered them a product of a transcultural colonial encounter that lacked authenticity, and was somehow less Tibetan.

Rai Bahadur Achuk Tsering (1877–1920) and Dewan Bahadur Phalha se Sonam Wangyal, or Palhese for short (c.1870–c.1936) (figure 4), came from two contrasting Himalayan worlds and they had cultural knowledge that Bell valued differently.

Achuk Tsering, like Macdonald and Samdup, was a graduate of the Bhutia Boarding School system, sent there by his “respectable Bhutia family,” who owned estates in southern Sikkim and who seems to have helped the British during the 1888 Sikkim border disputes with Tibet.[61] On completing his studies in Darjeeling he was recruited into the service of the British in 1896, where Bell recalled much later in retirement that, “he was one of several clerks in a small countrified Government office.”[62] His family connections within Sikkim society are made obvious by his first marriage into Sikkim’s most influential family, the Barmioks, who had provided council to Sikkim’s Chögyals for generations. Despite this prestigious union, the marriage failed to produce children and Achuk Tsering married again.[63] With his second family he settled in Kalimpong, becoming an expert in diplomatic negotiations, especially those concerning Bhutan. He travelled with Bell on his first government survey of Bhutan and the Ammo Chu valley in 1904, and then acted as Bell’s “Confidential Clerk” during the signing of the Punakha Treaty in Bhutan in 1910. In the same year, during the thirteenth Dalai Lama’s meeting with the Viceroy of India in Calcutta, he worked as a clerk and translator, a role he would take on again for the Sikkim delegation at the 1911 Delhi Durbar. He was also a valued translator and go-between at the Simla convention of 1913–1914. Achuk Tsering’s diplomatic value to Bell is obvious, as his name appeared first on Bell’s staff list for his mission party to Lhasa, where, tragically, he died in December 1920.

Fig. 4: Achuk Tsering (left) and Palhese (right), Gangtok Residency, before 1920. Private collection.

After his death, a deeply distressed Bell said of Achuk Tsering, “He was a man of great political acumen, my right hand man in Tibetan, Bhutanese and Sikkimese politics.”[64] There is no question that Bell valued Achuk Tsering’s trans-Himalayan knowledge, but it is also clear that Bell did not see Achuk Tsering’s knowledge as purely Sikkimese, Bhutanese, or even for that matter Tibetan, but considered it tainted by the colonial experience. Bell makes this explicit when recalling his borderland experiences. “The Tibetans who live in Indian territory, even those on the Tibetan frontier in Darjeeling and Kalimpong, gain only a partial knowledge of Tibet and Tibetan life, religious, domestic or political, for they are heavily influenced by Western ideas.”[65] Bell evidently differentiated between the knowledge and skills he gathered from those who lived in the borderlands as opposed to those whom he saw as occupying a “purer,” more Tibetan space. Palhese was a man who, in Bell’s mind, epitomised the features of a Tibetan cultural broker.

Unlike most of the men discussed in this paper, Palhese neither spoke nor wrote in English, and he often baffled Bell with the poetic, almost incomprehensible, rhymes and idioms of the Tibetan language. For Bell, he was a “veritable encyclopedia [sic] of things Tibetan, high and low, especially on the secular side,” and he gave Bell access to intellectual and aristocratic expertise that, to Bell, was “a close preserve.”[66] He taught Bell to speak honorific Tibetan, the language of the Lhasa aristocrats; he selected objects coveted by the Lhasa elites for Bell’s collection; and he advised him on every detail of Lhasan etiquette. He held a unique position as the only Tibetan aristocrat directly employed by the British India Government,[67] and his standing was more exclusive still as he worked solely for Bell. The two men worked together for more than thirty years. Yet this rarefied picture does not stand up to scrutiny, as Bell only had access to Palhese’s cultural capital because of the latter’s exile in the Himalayan borderlands.

Palhese belonged to the Phalha, a wealthy and politically influential family of southern Tibet, who owned estates near Gyantse as well as large properties in Lhasa. But Das’s covert visit in 1881–1882 had cost the Phalha family its security and status. Palhese’s mother and father had supported Das during his visit, unaware that he was a colonial spy. There are conflicting reports about torture, death, and banishment for Palhese’s parents, but what is certain is that several of the family estates were sealed. Palhese met Das when he was just thirteen years of age, and we are unsure of his position in Tibet in the ensuing years, but in 1903 he was posted to Yatung as a low-level officer by the Tibetan government. Here he must have met Bell and other British officers, and it was most likely here that he decided (or was coerced) to work for the British.[68] His work with Bell (who later developed a pro-Tibetan stance) led the Dalai Lama to reinstate the Phalha estates and Palhese was given high honorific titles by both the British and the Tibetans. His knowledge and communicative abilities allowed him to recover something of his wealth, status, and power, along with a partial reintegration into Tibetan society.

Bell, like Waddell, privileged southern Tibet and especially Lhasa, which he saw as “the nerve-centre of these mountain lands.”[69] Those in the borderlands involved in developing a scholarly picture of Tibet looked to Lhasa to authenticate the publications they produced. Knowledge of Lhasa was highly prized, with those writing on Tibet hoping to raise their authoritative status by working with those who knew Lhasa—its monasteries, its language, it etiquette, and its culture. But in reality knowledge production in the borderlands was impossible to label or compartmentalise. This was also true for the men who produced it; they too had multiple agendas and just as many loyalties, sometimes to forces well outside the control of British India.
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Part 2 of 2

Ghum monastery: Dictionaries in a contact zone

The Ghum monastery was founded in 1875 by Llama [sic] Sherabgyatsa, one of the Yellow-sect Geylukpa [sic], and was intended primarily as a place for political meetings more than as a monastery. It receives a grant of Rs. 60/- per mensem from the Government, is managed by a secretary and a committee, and has some fifty monks in residence.

— E. C. Dozey[70]

By the time Englishman Eric Collin Dozey, a long-time Darjeeling resident, journalist and author, published his tourist guide to Darjeeling and Sikkim in 1917, it was already an open secret that Ghum or Ghoom Monastery (figure 5) was a meeting place for many of those with an interest in Tibet.

Fig. 5: Tinted postcard of Ghum Monastery, photograph taken after its restoration (paid for by Laden La) following the 1934 earthquake. Courtesy of Emma Martin.

Fig. 6: Postcard of a staged photograph featuring the “Darjeeling lamas,” including Lama Sherab Gyatso (second from left), taken around 1890–1900. Courtesy of Emma Martin.

As Waddell’s collecting practices show, monasteries in the borderlands were critical sites for access to different kinds of primary sources, but religion and scholarship were only part of a complex story unfolding in Darjeeling. In Ghum, lamas, officers and explorers blurred the lines between scholarly pursuits and information gathering for the purposes of colonial security.

Sherab Gyatso, the dictionary compiler for Das and the lama who worked with Waddell, was the Head lama of Ghum monastery, which still stands on the outskirts of Darjeeling (figure 6). He was Mongolian by birth, but served an astrologer to the eighth Panchen Lama, Lobsang Chökyi Wangchuk (1855–1882), at Tashi Lhunpo monastery. From the account Sherab Gyatso gave to Ugyen Gyatso, the lama left China in 1856, spending twelve years living as a prominent monastic figure in Kongbu, now Kongpo (Tibetan kong po) and then Pemakoichhen, now Pémakö (Tibetan pad ma bkhod) in south-eastern Tibet’s lower Tsangpo valley—a distance of more than 300 kilometres from Lhasa—before making his way to Darjeeling.[71] While not, strictly speaking, a pundit for the Survey of India, on arrival in Darjeeling he offered what he knew to Ugyen Gyatso, allowing the survey to make the first sketch map of the region in which he had lived. When Croft compiled his 1895 report on the progress of the dictionaries and translations currently in production at the Darjeeling press, he noted of Sherab Gyatso that “The Lama has hardly an equal in Tibetan scholarship on this side of the Himalayas; and as he is approaching eighty years of age, though still a man of remarkable energy, it is desirable to utilise his great erudition while it is still at our disposal.”[72] He continued his dual monastic and intelligence roles at Ghum, searching out illustrative passages of Tibetan text for Das’s dictionary project, while teaching at the Bhutia Boarding School.[73] After the construction of Ghum monastery, the British would send many notable future translators/cultural brokers to Ghum for Tibetan language training, including Laden La, the teacher and translator Lobzang Mingyur Dorje (n.d.), and the British India officer and interpreter Karma Sumdhon Paul (1877–c.1935).[74]

The lama’s scholarship also made Ghum monastery an important address for a number of international travellers. The Ukrainian Helena Blavatsky (1831–1891), a founding member of the Theosophical Society found refuge there during her stay in Darjeeling in 1882,[75] and the lama could also name amongst his pupils Ekai Kawaguchi (1846–1945),[76] the Japanese monk who came to Darjeeling in 1898 to prepare for his trip to Lhasa disguised as a Chinese pilgrim. Ekai Kawaguchi’s second Darjeeling-based tutor also found refuge with Sherab Gyatso at Ghum monastery. The considerable sum of sixty rupees given by the British India government to Ghum monastery for intelligence services rendered must in part have been warranted by the activities of the Buryat monk, Kachen Lobsang Tsering (also known as Sherab Gyatso, d.1909),[77] who was better known to the British as Shabdung Lama.[78] His life, like Palhese’s, was deeply affected by the clandestine mission of Das and Ugyen Gyatso.[79] Das had met Shabdung Lama in 1882 when he stayed in Drongtse, near Gyantse, during his 1881–1882 trip. He described him as a “boy-monk,” who “fetch[ed] water from the wells for my use.”[80] He was in fact the attendant of a revered Gelukpa (Tibetan dGe lugs pa) lama known to the British as Sengchen Lama, who also had ties to Tashi Lhunpo and Ghum monasteries.[81] Sengchen Lama met his end when the Tibetan government ordered his execution by drowning for giving Das a safe haven during his covert expedition. On his master’s execution in 1887, Shabdung Lama was force-marched to Lhasa and imprisoned there, but escaped, through Bhutan, to Darjeeling and finally to Ghum monastery.[82]

He was well established in Ghum by the early 1890s, working for Das as a clerk on his dictionary project in 1894 (perhaps as compensation). Despite Shabdung Lama’s participation in British India’s dictionary projects, the British, their colonial anxieties heightened, watched the activities of the lama’s guests at Ghum monastery with some interest. This is hardly surprising as they included several Russian “bogey men,” most significantly the Russian-trained Kalmykian explorer Ovshe Norzunov (n.d.) and later his monastic teacher, the Buryat lama Agvan Dorzhiev (1854–1938),[83] whom the British suspected of brokering diplomatic ties between the thirteenth Dalai Lama and Tsar Nicholas II.[84] Despite their suspicions, the British continued to employ Shabdung Lama as a Tibetan teacher, translator, and colonial intelligence gatherer. Captain (later Colonel) William Frederick Travers O’Connor (1870–1943), who wrote his own dictionary and who co-wrote government guidelines on Tibetan transliteration with Bell in 1904,[85] employed the lama not only as his Tibetan tutor, but also as an intelligence gatherer in the Darjeeling bazaar.[86] Bell was also likely to have been a pupil of Shabdung Lama, as he recalls that his first Tibetan teacher was “a gifted monk, who was born in Tibet and had worked for many years in a monastery not far from Gyangtse[sic].”[87]

The position of Ghum vividly illustrates the wider necessity for bringing those with pertinent information together in Darjeeling. The monastery was multi-faceted in its purpose and a perfect site for producing the entangled forms of colonial knowledge necessary to develop a comprehensive picture of Tibet. This monastic contact zone, built by a Mongolian and sponsored by the British, acted as a transitory home for a global community of spiritual seekers, monastic spies, and covert explorers. It also played a central role in training those who went on to become some of the most recognisable (if often hidden) names in early Tibetan Studies scholarship. Ghum, then, was a place where even perceived multiple allegiances—on occasion with Russia, one of British India’s most feared colonial opponents—were tolerated by British India officers.

Such a pivotal position made Sherab Gyatso and Shabdung Lama powerful, inasmuch as they were able to operate outside the authority of accepted colonial networks. This was not the case for most. Many of the men discussed here gained positions of power and in some cases significant wealth, but in tracing the processes of knowledge production it is clear that colonial barriers were often present. It is already obvious that British officers did not always acknowledge the men who made their publications possible, and there were considerable hurdles for those outside the core colonial networks. Despite this, there is an alternate reading of this transcultural encounter to be explored, as colonial officers did not always get exactly what they wanted, because access to valuable expertise was a matter of negotiation.

The boundaries of knowledge

I would add Sir Charles Bell should in due courtesy have mentioned in his books about the role I played specially when for that purpose he sent for me and sought my advice and help.

— David Macdonald[88]

Making a name was not always easy for the men who worked in Darjeeling and Kalimpong. Geographical boundaries placed limits on what was known and what was privileged, but there were other kinds of boundaries. The frustrated note written by Macdonald and quoted above can be read as articulating a much wider and long-suppressed disappointment in the value of knowledge production. As already noted, Bell and Hannah, amongst others, did to some extent acknowledge Macdonald, but Macdonald still felt it necessary to write himself back into the making of some of the most significant publications of the late nineteenth century (figure 7).

A man with whom Macdonald had good reason to be frustrated was Waddell, who failed to acknowledge that Macdonald spent close to a decade working with him on textual translations.

Fig. 7: David Macdonald (centre, seated) with Gyantse Trade Agency staff, 1921. Private collection.

When Macdonald left the Bhutia Boarding School at the age of nineteen, he received a posting at the Vaccination Department, on Waddell’s recommendation, spending most of his time at the Depot Headquarters in Ghum.[89] Only a few years older than his pupils, he filled his evenings by teaching English to several boys attending Sherab Gyatso’s Tibetan classes at Ghum monastery.[90] Yet the majority of his spare time was occupied with bringing some of Waddell’s best-known publications to fruition, including The Buddhism of Tibet and Waddell’s significant contribution to Risley’s The Sikhim Gazetteer. It is left to Macdonald to tell us that, “For some years I assisted this officer in the preparation of his works on the then little known religion of Tibet and Sikkim, Lamaism, and in some portions of his contribution to the Sikkim Gazetteer and the Linguistic Survey of India.”[91]

When surveying Macdonald’s standing within this scholarly network, one perhaps understands his career progression as an Anglo-Indian as exceptional. He did indeed break several employment barriers, securing appointments to posts previously given only to British officers, but he also had to push past boundaries that seem to have had the sole aim of excluding him from the recognition he deserved as a scholar and instructor. In 1924, now close to retirement, Macdonald was forced to take the Higher Proficiency Test in Tibetan by his new supervisor, Political Officer Frederick Marshman “Eric” Bailey (1882–1967) and his memoir does not hide his frustration over the incident.

I passed with ease, receiving a reward of two thousand rupees from Government. In a way, this test was a farce, for I had been appointed an examiner in the Degree of Honour test in that language as far back as 1906. This is a higher examination than that for which I was allowed to appear. However, the rules admitted of my appearing, and so I did.[92]

Those who set the rules and demanded his attendance also seemingly wished to put Macdonald in his “colonial” place. In 1921, Bailey took over the post of Political Officer not from his official predecessor, Bell, but from Macdonald, who had been acting in the role until Bailey’s arrival. McKay notes that Bailey “found it demeaning to his prestige to take over Sikkim from an Anglo-Sikkimese.”[93] Bailey, it seems, wanted to assert his authority over those whom he thought of as his imperial inferiors.

Macdonald was not the only man to suffer from being passed over in silence in the pages of Darjeeling-based scholarship—I have noted several others in this article. Kazi Dawa Samdup, with whom I began this article, also found complex and uneven hurdles as he pursued his philological activities.[94] Family pressures meant that Samdup became a British India employee rather than a monk, as he hoped, but he nevertheless became a Tibetan Buddhist teacher to Walter Yeeling Evan-Wentz (1878–1965), the American “author” of The Tibetan Book of the Dead, who could neither speak nor read Tibetan,[95] as well as to Hannah and the French explorer and scholar Alexandra David Neel (1868–1969).[96]

His expertise was called upon for several Anglo-Sikkimese projects, including the translating and annotation of the History of Sikkim,[97] a project undertaken at the behest of John Claude White (1953–1919), Bell’s predecessor as Political Officer. He also acted as chief translator for the British during White’s and the Sikkim delegation’s trip to Calcutta in 1905–1906 for the ninth Panchen Lama’s visit to the Viceroy of India, and under Bell’s tenure he acted as the Chögyal’s interpreter during the Delhi Durbar of 1911. He also played a critical role at the Simla convention of 1913–1914, translating many of the documents the Tibetans brought with them to establish their claim to independence.[98] He became a renowned scholar in his own right following the publication of his acclaimed An English-Tibetan Dictionary in 1919, which both Hannah and Macdonald had urged him to finish. In the same year, he moved to Calcutta University to take up a professorship in Tibetan.

Despite his seemingly smooth rise, it had been an eventful intellectual journey for Samdup. From the preface to his dictionary it is clear that his position as a local scholar, who began his work outside of approved colonial structures, limited his abilities to gather the necessary information. Samdup began compiling his dictionary in 1902 in Darjeeling, but despite the hill station’s philological heritage, until 1906

the only books of reference which I wished to consult—viz. (1) Csoma de Körös’s and (2) Jäschkes’ Tibetan-English Dictionaries, and that masterpiece of work, the late Rai Sarat Chandra Das Bahadur’s Tibetan-English Dictionary—were all beyond my means of purchase and could not be borrowed, and I often despaired of being able to complete my self-imposed task.[99]

Sponsorship, and specifically colonial sponsorship, was evidently critical here, and without it scholarship proved difficult to pursue. Following his move to Gangtok in 1905 as headmaster of the Bhutia Boarding school outpost, White became Samdup’s sponsor and only then did he receive the dictionaries he needed to complete his work. When White retired from service in 1908, Samdup faced new challenges. He assumed that his sponsor would continue to support his complex philological work, but when White retired he left his scholarly responsibilities behind. Samdup had to wait until a further opportunity presented itself in 1911 at the Delhi Durbar. There he met Denison Ross, who recommended his work to Sir Ashutosh Mukerjee, and as a result Samdup (and by extension his pupil, Hannah) found a new sponsor in the form of Calcutta University. Samdup came to the realisation that research and publishing one’s work was only possible if sanctioned and supported by a colonial infrastructure. However, I do not wish to present a picture of victimhood here, as Samdup, an established intellectual, was also more than willing and able to create barriers to his knowledge for the colonial officers he worked with.

When White retired in November 1908, he wrote to Samdup and noted of his successor that “I think you will like Mr Bell.”[100] Bell was now Political Officer for Sikkim, Bhutan, and Tibet, based at the Gangtok Residency, and Samdup was an established headmaster. The two men developed a scholarly relationship around 1912 that lasted until Bell’s retirement in 1918. They regularly spent their Saturday afternoons together discussing texts that Samdup translated for Bell. By 1916 Bell and Samdup had worked together on numerous translation projects, but it is all too clear that Bell was still wholly reliant on Samdup for his authoritative translation skills. In June, Bell sent Samdup a letter asking him to estimate the cost of a new translation: “[W]hat would [be] your charge for translating this History of Tibet by the 5th Dalai Lama (113 sheets)? A typed translation would be preferred. The translation should be [a] simple one, i.e. not ornate.”[101] It seems that their scholarly relationship was agreed on a “pay as you go” basis. Bell needed to buy his access to Tibetan culture, for even with unequal colonial power balances, Samdup’s knowledge was not available to him free of charge. Samdup was more than willing to drive a hard bargain, and after he named his price, which was beyond the means available, Bell wrote that he could not afford it, and offered changed terms.

Please return the History by the 5th Dalai Lama unless you are willing to reduce your terms. I’m sorry that I cannot afford your price. I can offer only two rupees per sheet, the dedication + poetry being omitted, + only the plain history part translated. I should of course provide the paper. The translation need not be typed. If these terms suit you, please keep the History + let me know, + I will send you the paper.[102]

Samdup knew that such a project needed a translator who thought in Tibetan. He knew the outer limits of this colonial officer’s scholarly abilities, and as a result he placed a solid value on his own scholarly worth. There are no further letters on how the negotiations were resolved, but obviously an agreement was reached on the new terms and the translations found their way into Bell’s Religion of Tibet, where Samdup is acknowledged in a chapter Bell called “Sources”.

Relevant portions of the leading histories so received have been translated for me by Mr Negi Amar Chand, Mr David Macdonald—who speaks and writes Tibetan more easily than English—and Rai Bahadur Nor-bu Dhon-dup. A great deal has been done by Mr Tse-ring Pün-tso and most of all by that tower of learning, the late Kazi Da-wa Sam-trup.[103]

Bell’s and Samdup’s experiences bring into sharp focus the lived realities of scholarly networks in colonial hill stations. One’s own expertise was controlled, haggled over, and promoted. Sponsors could open many doors, but many more opportunities could be lost if those who claimed to be knowledgeable omitted to mention with whom they had produced their publications. Knowledge production was not a genteel profession here in the hill stations of eastern India; it was a decidedly contentious process of negotiation under the complex asymmetrical conditions of colonialism.


Darjeeling and Kalimpong were transcultural scholarly spaces that, by their very nature, were dynamic and continually reconfigured by local and colonial politics, by trade and by the highly mobile people that lived and worked there. Borderlands are often conceptualised as peripheries, delineating the boundaries of what is known about places and peoples beyond frontiers. But these hill stations on the boundaries figured as central hubs, with information flowing in from both sides of the border. Modern forms of knowledge production about Tibet developed here, especially in the realms of language and ethnography. Colonial scholars looked towards Darjeeling to find the best-informed and most accessible local intellectuals to help them establish themselves in contemporary Tibetan Studies. This is where they found people with the necessary language and cultural background, who had access to sources and areas in Tibet that were off limits. This notion of the Himalayan hill station as a peripheral site can be turned on its head in Darjeeling and Kalimpong. The scholars who worked here were at the centre of Tibet-related knowledge production, feeding those at the peripheries—the museums, libraries, and universities of Europe and North America—with new publications and specimens.

Approaching this knowledge production from a local Himalayan perspective shows the complexity of the scholarly, social, and political processes of information collection and publication. Local expertise was grappled with and negotiated in a way that gave considerable agency to select local intellectuals and never simply reproduced the asymmetry of colonial settings. Several genealogies came together here. Colonial genealogies anchored in successions to the same administrative position merged with lineages anchored in teacher-student relations and local family lineages to produce site-specific knowledge.

Colonial knowledge was then fundamentally informed by multiple ways of reading the Tibetan world. The final products of these encounters, the dictionaries, grammars, and manuals, with their partial acknowledgements of local contributors, represent a highly visible transcultural interaction while clearly retaining their distinctly colonial flair. These hybrid texts allow us to trace the scholarly discussions, ambitions, disappointments, and uncertainties that made new ways of reading Tibet possible in the hill stations of the Himalayas.



[1] Thomas Holdich, The Story of Exploration: Tibet, the Mysterious (London: Alston Rivers Ltd, 1906).

[2] Herodotus, The Histories (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1998), 212–213.

[3] The British Mission to Tibet was sanctioned by then Viceroy Curzon and led by Colonel (later Sir) Francis Younghusband. Its initial aim was to sign a trade agreement with Tibet. However, the mission turned into a punitive expedition and many Tibetans were killed and monasteries and homes were looted. A unilateral agreement was signed in the Potala in Lhasa in September 1904 by a proxy head of state, as the Dalai Lama had fled to Mongolia.

[4] See ... mpong.html [Accessed on 2. July 2016].

[5] Mary Louise Pratt, Imperial Eyes: Travel Writing and Transculturation, 2nd ed. (London: Routledge, 2008), 7.

[6] Ibid., 7.

[7] Afef Bennesaieh, ed., Amériques Transculutrelles / Transcultural Americas (Ottawa: University of Ottawa Press, 2010), 16.

[8] Henk Driessen, “Mediterranean Divides and Connections: The Role of Dragomans as Cultural Brokers,” in Agents of Transculturation, ed. Sebastian Jobs and Gesa Mackenthun (Münster: Waxmann, 2013), 30.

[9] Viceroy Curzon believed that Russian guns were stockpiled in Tibet and he was disturbed by accounts of Tibetan delegations to Russia. The Mission to Lhasa was conceived based on this intelligence. Sam Van Schaik, Tibet: A History (New Haven: Yale University Press, 2011), 171.

[10] Rama Sundari Mantena, The Origins of Modern Historiography in India (New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2012), 151–177.

[11] Ibid., 54.

[12] Susie Rijnhart, With the Tibetans in Tent and Temple (Ohio: Foreign Christian Missionary Society, 1901).

[13] See Douglas A. Wissing, Pioneer in Tibet: The Life and Perils of Dr. Albert Shelton (New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2004).

[14] W. Y. Evan-Wentz, The Tibetan Book of the Dead (1927; repr., London: Oxford University Press, 1957), 1xiii.

[15] Ananda K. Coomaraswamy, Hinduism and Buddhism (New York: Philosophical Library, 1943), 49.

[16] Evan-Wentz, The Tibetan Book of the Dead, 1xiii.

[17] Lama Kazi Dawasamdup, An English-Tibetan Dictionary (Calcutta: Baptist Mission Press, 1919), vi.

[18] Driessen, “Mediterranean Divides and Connections,” 30.

[19] For a discussion on the production of reliable legal knowledge, see Kapil Raj, Relocating Modern Science: Circulation and the Construction of Knowledge in South Asia and Europe, 1650–1900 (Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, 2007), 95–138.

[20] Mantena, The Origins of Modern Historiography, 54.

[21] Herbert Bruce Hannah, Grammar of the Tibetan Language, Literary and Colloquial (Calcutta: Baptist Mission Press, 1912), iii. The Baptist (or Serampore) Mission Press played a significant role in the publication and global circulation of resources on the Tibetan language. See John Bray, “Missionaries, Officials and the Making of the Dictionary of Bhotanta, or Boutan language,” Zentralasiatische Studien 37 (2008): 33–75.

[22] Alexander Csoma de Kőrös, Essay towards a Dictionary, Tibetan and English, with the assistance of Bandé Sangs-rgyas Phuntshogs (Calcutta: Baptist Mission Press, 1834).

[23] His exact words were, “wherever he gropes there is something that seems ever to elude him; and amid the weird philological phantoms that flit uncertainly around in the prevailing gloom, his constant cry, I feel very sure, is still one for more light.” Hannah, Grammar of the Tibetan Language, iii.

[24] Hannah describes Samdup as “my Münshi,” a Persian word for interpreter or secretary. Hannah, Grammar of the Tibetan Language, x.

[25] Dawasamdup, An English-Tibetan Dictionary, vii.

[26] Denison Ross also catalogued the collection of the Hungarian explorer M. Aurel Stein at the British Museum. See Imre Galambos, “Touched a Nation’s Heart: Sir E. Denison Ross and Alexander Csoma de Körös,” Journal of the Royal Asiatic Society 21, no. 3 (2011): 361–375.

[27] Hannah, Grammar of the Tibetan Language, x.

[28] Thomas Herbert Lewin, A Manual of Tibetan, being a Guide to the colloquial Speech of Tibet, in a Series of Progressive Exercises, Prepared with the Assistance of Yapa Uygen Gyastho, a Learned Lama of the Monastery of Pemiongchi (Calcutta: Baptist Mission Press, 1879).

[29] Nicholas Rhodes and Deki Rhodes, A Man of the Frontier: S. W. Laden La (Kolkata: Mira Bose, 2006), 8. For further details on the wealth and status he would accrue later in life, see Peter Richardus, ed., Tibetan Lives: Three Himalayan Autobiographies (Richmond: Curzon, 1998), 25–26.

[30] For the recruitment, training, and expeditions undertaken by these men see, Derek J. Waller, The Pundits: British Exploration of Tibet and Central Asia (Lexington: University Press of Kentucky, 2004).

[31] See Sarat Chandra Das, Journal to Lhasa and Central Tibet (London: John Murray, 1902), vii. See also page xi for Das’s short biographical account of Ugyen Gyatso.

[32] Sven Hedin, Scientific Results of a Journey in Central Asia, 1899–1902 (Stockholm: Lithographic Institute of the General Staff of the Swedish Army, 1907), 4:526.

[33] The wider significance of what was happening in Darjeeling is clear from the circulation of the supposedly confidential reports produced by Das. Waller notes that they “were actually to be purchased in the open market in St. Petersburg soon after it was [they were] printed.” See Waller, The Pundits, 293n40.

[34] Das had met Rockhill in 1885 in Peking, when he accompanied the British diplomat Colman Macaulay to China. Macaulay’s visit failed to secure permission from the Qing Empire for a political and scientific mission to Tibet. Sarat Chandra Das, Autobiography: Narrative of the Incidents of My Early Life (Calcutta: Past & Present, 1969), v.

[35] Sarat Chandra Das, A Tibetan-English Dictionary with Sanskrit Synonyms (Calcutta: Bengal Secretariat Book Depot, 1902), i. Scholarship was often described in terms of exploration by the authors of these early works.

[36] Das, A Tibetan-English Dictionary, iii.

[37] See, F. W. Thomas, “Sandberg, Samuel Louis Graham (1851–1905),” rev. Schuyler Jones, in Oxford Dictionary of National Biography (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2004), [Accessed on 2. November 2013].

[38] Bray, “A History of the Moravian Church in India,” in The Himalayan Mission: Moravian Church Centenary, Leh, Ladakh, India, 1885–1985, ed. Moravian Church (Leh: Moravian Church, 1985), 27–75 and J. E. Hutton, A History of Moravian Missions (London: Moravian Publication Office, 1922), 861. The revisors’ preface written by Sandberg and Heyde and included at the beginning of the dictionary, suggests that the project suffered from immense difficulties and that Sandberg’s and Heyde’s revisions were considerable. Das, A Tibetan-English Dictionary, xi–xvi.

[39] Many thanks to Amy Holmes-Tagchungdarpa for pointing out Acharya’s colonial connections. Having learnt the Tibetan language in Darjeeling, he became a translator for the British, most notably during the ninth Panchen Lama’s visit to Calcutta in 1905. See Satish Chandra Vidyabhusana, A History of Indian Logic (Calcutta: University of Calcutta, 1921), xviii.

[40] Lopez Jr., citing Tibetologist Dan Martin, points out that “It was Sherab Gyatso who was the true author of Sarat Chandra Das’s Tibetan-English Dictionary, a fact only acknowledged on the Tibetan title page of this work.” See Donald S. Lopez Jr., “The Tibetan Book of the Dead:” A Biography (New Jersey: Princeton University Press, 2011), 159n4.

[41] A second uncle of Laden La’s was also a pundit. Rinzin Namgyal (RN) made covert explorations in Sikkim and Tibet, leading the 1884–1885 survey team that completed the first tour around Kangchenjunga in Sikkim. See Indra Singh Rawat, Indian Explorers of the Nineteenth Century (New Delhi: Ministry of Information, 1973), xviii.

[42] See, Alex McKay, Tibet and the British Raj (Richmond: Curzon Press, 1997), 111; Nicholas Rhodes and Deki Rhodes, “Sonam Wangfel Laden La—Tibet 1924 and 1930,” The Tibet Journal 28, no. 4 (Winter 2003): 77–90.

[43] “Type copy of book VI,” Eur Mss F80/218, Ch. 1, 2, India Office Records (hereafter IOR), British Library.

[44] Rhodes and Rhodes, A Man of the Frontier, 17.

[45] David Macdonald, Twenty Years in Tibet (1932; repr., Varanasi: Pilgrim Publishing, 2005), 40.

[46] Charles Alfred Bell, Manual of Colloquial Tibetan (Calcutta: Baptist Mission Press, 1905).

[47] I am grateful to Mr Tashi Tsering, Director of Amnye Machen Institute, Dharamshala, who shared his rare copy of this dictionary with me.

[48] For a brief biographical account, see Luciano Petech, Aristocracy and Government of Tibet (Rome: Instituto Italiano Per Il Medio Ed Estremo Oriente, 1973), 224. Gungthang’s work on the thirteenth Dalai Lama was a mandatory text for the high proficiency exam in Tibetan taken by colonial officers. Sarat Chandra Das, An Introduction to the Grammar of the Tibetan Language (1915; repr., Delhi: Motilal Banarsidass, 1972), ii.

[49] L. Austine Waddell, The Buddhism of Tibet; or, Lamaism, 2nd ed. (Cambridge: W. Heffer & Sons Ltd, 1939), viii.

[50] Ibid., xii.

[51] Ibid., x.

[52] Ibid., xii

[53] See Clare E. Harris, Museum on the Roof of the World, (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2012), 38–47 for discussions on Waddell and museological networks in the late nineteenth century.

[54] Waddell would also cite Das’s still supposedly confidential reports as a source for his own work.

[55] Waddell, The Buddhism of Tibet, vii. It seems that Schlagintweit’s brothers did have Tibetan connections. See Moritz von Brescius, “Empires of Opportunities: The Role of German Travelling Scholars in Europe’s Overseas Empires, ca. 1830–1880,” (PhD thesis, European University Institute/Cambridge University, 2015).

[56] L. Austine Waddell, The Buddhism of Tibet, or Lamaism: with its mystic cults, symbolism and mythology, and in its relation to Indian Buddhism, (London: W. H. Allen & Co., 1895), xi.

[57] Ibid., xii.

[58] This interesting example of a cultural broker (Achuk Tsering, see next section) dismissing the work of a rival also identifies Waddell’s Tibetan lama. “R[ai] B[ahadur] Achuk Tshering [sic] tells me that Col. Waddell’s lama (who worked with him for a long time + told Achuk Tshering [sic] that he, Col. Waddell was compiling a book), was not very learned. His name was Lama Pema Chöphel + he was Tibetan teacher at the Bhutia Boarding School at Darjeeling. He did not know much Tibetan literature.” Charles Alfred Bell, Diary Volume VI, February 23, 1918, private collection.

[59] Charles Alfred Bell, Portrait of a Dalai Lama: The Life and Times of the Great Thirteenth (1946; repr., London: Wisdom Publications, 1987), 263.

[60] Charles Alfred Bell, Settlement Officer, final report on the survey and settlement of the Kalimpong government estate in the district of Darjeeling 1901–1903 [published 1905], Eur Mss F80/239, Rs 5 7s. 6.d, IOR, British Library. Ugyen Gyatso was now the estate’s manager.

[61] An 1888 campaign medal, still with the family in Kalimpong, provides this thread of evidence. I am indebted to Achuk Tsering’s family for our discussions.

[62] Bell, Portrait of a Dalai Lama, 245.

[63] Thanks to Mr Tashi Densapa for this information. Tashi Tsering, personal communication with the author, April 10, 2013.

[64] Charles Alfred Bell, Tibet Notebook II, 91, private collection.

[65] Bell, Portrait of a Dalai Lama, 25.

[66] Ibid., 25.

[67] McKay, Tibet and the British Raj, 124.

[68] Darjeeling Confidential Frontier Reports, November 1903, nos. 40–80, Secret External, Foreign Department, National Archives of India, Delhi.

[69] Charles Alfred Bell, Religion of Tibet (1931; repr., New Delhi: Motilal Banarsidass Publishers, 2000), 49.

[70] E. C. Dozey, A Concise History of the Darjeeling District since 1835, 3rd ed. (Darjeeling: Gurkha Press, 1922), 80.

[71] G. Strahan, report on the explorations of Lama Sherap Gyatsho, 1856–68, explorer K-P, 1880–84, Lama UG [This is Ugyen Gyatso.] 1883, explorer RN 1885–86, explorer PA 1885–86, in Sikkim, Bhutan and Tibet, 1889, Dehra Dun, V/27/69/26, IOR, British Library. In Darjeeling Sherab Gyatso posed as a Tibetan lama in a series of staged photographs commissioned and used by Das and Waddell. See Harris, Museum on the Roof of the World, 89–103.

[72] G. Strahan, report on the explorations of […], V/27/69/26, IOR.

[73] Das, Autobiography, 31.

[74] See Richardus, ed., Tibetan Lives, 79, for a vignette of Sherab Gyatso’s teaching practice, provided by Karma Sumdhon Paul. All three would work for Das, but would go unacknowledged.

[75] Das would also provide her with texts for her writings. See K. Paul Johnson, Initiates of Theosophical Masters (Albany: State University of New York Press, 1995), 24–25.

[76] On Das’s recommendation, see Ekai Kawaguchi, Three Years in Tibet (Benares: Theosophical Printing Press, 1909), 11. Das died in 1917, shortly after travelling with Kawaguchi to Japan to study Buddhism. See Das, Autobiography, vi.

[77] See sle zur ‘jigs med dbang phyug et al. Bod kyi rig gnas lo rgyus dpyad gzhi’i rgyu cha bdams bsgrigs, ‘don thengs bdun pa (Lhasa: bod rang skyong ljongs par ‘debs bzo grwa nas par lha sa, 1985), 7:9–11.

[78] The biographies of the Mongolian Sherab Gyatso and the Buryat Shabdung Lama have been conflated to create one man by Harris, Lopez Jr., and Toni Huber. Harris, Museum on the Roof of the World; Toni Huber, The Holy Land Reborn: Pilgrimage and the Tibetan Reinvention of Buddhist India (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2008), Donald S. Lopez Jr., Prisoners of Shangri-la: Tibetan Buddhism and the West (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1999). I align myself with McKay, because sources, some cited here for the first time, clearly refer to two separate men. McKay, "The Drowning of Lama Sengchen Kyabying: A Preliminary Enquiry from British Sources," in Proceedings of the Ninth Seminar of the IATS, 2000, vol. 1, Tibet: Past and Present, Tibetan Studies 1, ed. Henk Blezer (Leiden: Brill, 2002), 263-280.

[79] See McKay, “The Drowning of Lama Sengchen Kyabying.”

[80] Das, Autobiography, 60.

[81] The Phalha family were in a “priest-patron” relationship with the Sengchen Lama.

[82] ‘jigs med dbang phyug, Bod kyi rig gnas lo rgyus […], 10.

[83] For detailed accounts of Dorzhiev’s life see John Snelling, The Story of Agvan Dorzhiev, Lhasa’s Emissary to the Tzar (Shaftsbury: Element Books Ltd, 1993) and Alexandre Andreyev, Soviet Russia and Tibet: The Debacle of Secret Diplomacy, 1918–1930s (Leiden: Brill, 2003).

[84] In 1901, Laden La would inform Walsh about these uninvited visitors and Norzunov would be placed under surveillance and interviewed on several occasions. See Snelling, The Story of Agvan Dorzhiev, 67–68. They were right to suspect him, see Jampa Samten and Nikolay Tsyrempilov, From Tibet Confidentially (Dharamshala: Library of Tibetan Works & Archives, 2012).

[85] Charles Alfred Bell and Frederick O’Connor, Rules for the Phonetic Transcription into English of Tibetan Words (Darjeeling, 1904).

[86] McKay, “The Drowning of Lama Sengchen Kyabying,” 270.

[87] Bell, Portrait of a Dalai Lama, 24.

[88] David Macdonald, untitled and undated note on the subject of China and Tibet, 1921, private collection.

[89] Macdonald, Twenty Years in Tibet, 12.

[90] Richardus, Tibetan Lives, 80.

[91] Macdonald, Twenty Years in Tibet, 12.

[92] Macdonald, Twenty Years in Tibet, 311.

[93] McKay, Tibet and the British Raj, 103.

[94] Kazi Dawa Samdup’s name appeared in the acknowledgements of several publications, but he was not necessarily given the substantial credit he deserved. See Ken Winkler, Pilgrim of Clear Light: The Biography of Dr. Walter Evan Wentz (1982; repr., Bangkok: BooksMango, 2013); Kathleen Taylor, Sir John Woodroffe, Tantra, and Bengal (2001; repr., Abingdon: Routledge, 2013).

[95] See, Dasho P. W. Samdup, “A Brief Biography of Kazi Dawa Samdup (1868–1922),” Bulletin of Tibetology 44, nos. 1–2 (2008): 155–158. Laden La recommended Samdup to Evan-Wentz in 1919 when the two met in Darjeeling. Laden La also worked on translations for Evan-Wentz’s The Tibetan Book of the Great Liberation, finally published in 1954.

[96] David-Neel travelled in disguise overland from China to Lhasa in 1924. Her inspiration came during a meeting in 1917 in Japan, with Ekai Kawaguchi. See Samuel Thévoz, “On the Threshold of the ‘Land of Marvels:’ Alexandra David-Neel in Sikkim and the Making of Global Buddhism,” Transcultural Studies 1 (2016): 168.

[97] See Tashi Tsering, “A Short Communication about the 1908 ‘Bras ljongs rgyal rabs,’ Bulletin of Tibetology 48, no. 1 (2012): 33–60.

[98] Ryosuke Kobayashi, “An Analytical Study of the Tibetan Record of the Simla Conference, 1913–1914: Shing stag rgya gar ‘phags pa’i yul du dbyin bod rgya gsum chings mol mdzad lugs kun gsal me long,” in Current Issues and Progress in Tibetan Studies: Proceedings of the Third International Seminar of Young Tibetologists, ed. Tsughito Takeuchi et al. (Kobe: University of Foreign Studies, 2013), 183–200.

[99] Dawasamdup, An English-Tibetan Dictionary, 2.

[100] White to Samdup, 1 November 1908. Kazi Dawa Samdup papers, L/PS/10/C909, IOR, British Library.

[101] Bell to Samdup, 30 June 1916, Kazi Dawa Samdup papers, L/PS/10/C909.

[102] Bell to Samdup, 7 July 1916, Kazi Dawa Samdup papers, L/PS/10/C909.

[103] Bell, Religion of Tibet, 199–200.
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Re: Freda Bedi, by Wikipedia

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Part 1 of 2

Max Stirner [Johann Kaspar Schmidt]
by Wikipedia
Accessed: 1/21/20



Max Stirner

-- Max Stirner

Max Stirner
Max Stirner as portrayed by Friedrich Engels
Born: Johann Kaspar Schmidt, 25 October 1806, Bayreuth, Bavaria
Died: 26 June 1856 (aged 49), Berlin, Prussia
Education: Gymnasium illustre zu Bayreuth [de]
University of Berlin (no degree)
University of Erlangen (no degree)
Era: 19th-century philosophy
Region: Western philosophy
School: Young Hegelians (early)
Egoist anarchism (post-mortem icon)
Main interests: Ethics, politics, ontology, property, value theory
Notable ideas: Union of egoists, psychological egoism
Influences: Bauer, Feuerbach, Hegel,[1] Fichte, possibly the Marquis de Sade
Influenced: Arrigoni, Byington, Engels, Marx, Newman, Bahnsen,[2] Darwin, Freud, Tucker, Mackay, Jünger, Steiner, Mussolini,[3][4] Armand, Camus, Schmitt, Novatore, Evola, Brand, Goldman, Black, Igualada, Read, Wilson, Reich, Landauer, Mühsam, Mencken, Adler, Gross[5]

Johann Kaspar Schmidt (25 October 1806 – 26 June 1856), better known as Max Stirner, was a German philosopher who is often seen as one of the forerunners of nihilism, existentialism, psychoanalytic theory, postmodernism, and individualist anarchism[6][7]. Stirner's main work, The Ego and Its Own, also known as The Unique And Its Property, or, literally, The Individual and His Property[8][9], was first published in 1845 in Leipzig and has since appeared in numerous editions and translations.


Stirner's birthplace in Bayreuth

Stirner was born in Bayreuth, Bavaria. What little is known of his life is mostly due to the Scottish-born German writer John Henry Mackay, who wrote a biography of Stirner (Max Stirner – sein Leben und sein Werk), published in German in 1898 (enlarged 1910, 1914) and translated into English in 2005. Stirner was the only child of Albert Christian Heinrich Schmidt (1769–1807) and Sophia Elenora Reinlein (1778–1839). His father died of tuberculosis on 19 April 1807 at the age of 37.[10] In 1809, his mother remarried to Heinrich Ballerstedt (a pharmacist) and settled in West Prussian Kulm (now Chełmno, Poland). When Stirner turned 20, he attended the University of Berlin,[10] where he studied philology, philosophy and theology. He attended the lectures of Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel, who was to become a source of inspiration for his thinking.[11] He attended Hegel's lectures on the history of philosophy, the philosophy of religion and the subjective spirit. Stirner then moved to the University of Erlangen, which he attended at the same time as Ludwig Feuerbach.[12]

Stirner returned to Berlin and obtained a teaching certificate, but he was unable to obtain a full-time teaching post from the Prussian government.[13] While in Berlin in 1841, Stirner participated in discussions with a group of young philosophers called Die Freien (The Free Ones) and whom historians have subsequently categorized as the Young Hegelians. Some of the best known names in 19th century literature and philosophy were involved with this group, including Karl Marx, Friedrich Engels, Bruno Bauer and Arnold Ruge. Contrary to popular belief, Feuerbach was not a member of Die Freien, although he was heavily involved in Young Hegelian discourse. While some of the Young Hegelians were eager subscribers to Hegel's dialectical method and attempted to apply dialectical approaches to Hegel's conclusions, the left-wing members of the group broke with Hegel. Feuerbach and Bauer led this charge.

Frequently the debates would take place at Hippel's, a wine bar in Friedrichstraße, attended by among others Marx and Engels, who were both adherents of Feuerbach at the time. Stirner met with Engels many times and Engels even recalled that they were "great friends",[14] but it is still unclear whether Marx and Stirner ever met. It does not appear that Stirner contributed much to the discussions, but he was a faithful member of the club and an attentive listener.[15] The most-often reproduced portrait of Stirner is a cartoon by Engels, drawn forty years later from memory at biographer Mackay's request. It is highly likely that this and the group sketch of Die Freien at Hippel's are the only firsthand images of Stirner. Stirner worked as a teacher in a school for young girls owned by Madame Gropius[16] when he wrote his major work, The Ego and Its Own, which in part is a polemic against Feuerbach and Bauer, but also against communists such as Wilhelm Weitling and the anarchist Pierre-Joseph Proudhon. He resigned from his teaching position in anticipation of controversy from this work's publication in October 1844.

Stirner married twice. His first wife was Agnes Burtz (1815–1838), the daughter of his landlady, whom he married on 12 December 1837. However, she died from complications with pregnancy in 1838. In 1843, he married Marie Dähnhardt, an intellectual associated with Die Freien. They divorced in 1846. The Ego and Its Own was dedicated "to my sweetheart Marie Dähnhardt". Marie later converted to Catholicism and died in 1902 in London.

After The Ego and Its Own, Stirner wrote Stirner's Critics and translated Adam Smith's The Wealth of Nations and Jean-Baptiste Say's Traite d'Economie Politique into German to little financial gain. He also wrote a compilation of texts titled History of Reaction in 1852. Stirner died in 1856 in Berlin from an infected insect bite and it is said that Bruno Bauer was the only Young Hegelian present at his funeral, held at the Friedhof II der Sophiengemeinde Berlin.


Main article: Philosophy of Max Stirner

See also: Egoism and Egoist anarchism

The philosophy of Stirner is credited as a major influence in the development of nihilism, existentialism and post-modernism as well as individualist anarchism, post-anarchism and post-left anarchy. Stirner's main philosophical work was The Ego and Its Own.


Stirner argues that individuals are impossible to fully comprehend. All mere concepts of the self will always be inadequate to fully describe the nature of our experience. Stirner has been broadly understood as a proponent of both psychological egoism and ethical egoism, although the latter position can be disputed as there is no claim in Stirner's writing in which one ought to pursue one's own interest and further claiming any ought could be seen as a new Fixed Idea.

Stirner's Egoism is purely descriptive and must be understood in the Dialectical context to which it refers. Stirner's egoism is an attempt to surpass the very idea of 'ought' itself. To try to fit Stirner into the contemporary mindset misses the point.

Hence this self-interest is necessarily subjective, allowing both selfish and altruistic normative claims to be included. Individual self-realization rests on each individual's desire to fulfill their egoism. The difference between an unwilling and a willing egoist is that the former will be possessed by an "empty idea" and believe that they are fulfilling a higher cause, but usually being unaware that they are only fulfilling their own desires to be happy or secure; and in contrast the latter will be a person that is able to freely choose its actions, fully aware that they are only fulfilling individual desires as stated by Stirner:

Sacred things exist only for the egoist who does not acknowledge himself, the involuntary egoist [...] in short, for the egoist who would like not to be an egoist, and abases himself (combats his egoism), but at the same time abases himself only for the sake of "being exalted", and therefore of gratifying his egoism. Because he would like to cease to be an egoist, he looks about in heaven and earth for higher beings to serve and sacrifice himself to; but, however much he shakes and disciplines himself, in the end he does all for his own sake [...] [on] this account I call him the involuntary egoist. [...] As you are each instant, you are your own creature in this very 'creature' you do not wish to lose yourself, the creator. You are yourself a higher being than you are, and surpass yourself. [...] [J]ust this, as an involuntary egoist, you fail to recognize; and therefore the 'higher essence' is to you – an alien essence. [...] Alienness is a criterion of the "sacred".

— Max Stirner[17]

The contrast is also expressed in terms of the difference between the voluntary egoist being the possessor of his concepts as opposed to being possessed. Only when one realizes that all sacred truths such as law, right, morality, religion and so on are nothing other than artificial concepts—and not to be obeyed—can one act freely. For Stirner, to be free is to be both one's own "creature" (in the sense of creation) and one's own "creator" (dislocating the traditional role assigned to the gods). To Stirner, power is the method of egoism—it is the only justified method of gaining property.


Three pioneers of individualist anarchism

Stirner proposes that most commonly accepted social institutions—including the notion of state, property as a right, natural rights in general and the very notion of society—were mere illusions, "spooks" or ghosts in the mind.[18] He advocated egoism and a form of amoralism in which individuals would unite in Unions of egoists only when it was in their self-interest to do so. For him, property simply comes about through might, saying: "Whoever knows how to take, to defend, the thing, to him belongs property. [...] What I have in my power, that is my own. So long as I assert myself as holder, I am the proprietor of the thing". He adds that "I do not step shyly back from your property, but look upon it always as my property, in which I respect nothing. Pray do the like with what you call my property!".[19] Stirner considers the world and everything in it, including other persons, available to one's taking or use without moral constraint[20] and that rights do not exist in regard to objects and people at all. He sees no rationality in taking the interests of others into account unless doing so furthers one's self-interest, which he believes is the only legitimate reason for acting. He denies society as being an actual entity, calling society a "spook" and that "the individuals are its reality" (The Ego and Its Own).

Despite being labeled as anarchist, Stirner was not necessarily one. Separation of Stirner and egoism from anarchism was first done by Dora Marsden in her debate with Benjamin Tucker in 1914 in her journals, The New Freewoman and The Egoist[21]. The idea of "egoist archism" was also expounded by various other egoists, mainly Malfew Seklew[22] and Sidney E. Parker[23]

Union of egoists

Main article: Union of egoists

Stirner's idea of the Union of egoists was first expounded in The Ego and Its Own. The Union is understood as a non-systematic association, which Stirner proposed in contradistinction to the state.[24] Unlike a "community" in which individuals are obliged to participate, Stirner's suggested Union would be voluntary and instrumental under which individuals would freely associate insofar as others within the Union remain useful to each constituent individual.[25] The Union relation between egoists is continually renewed by all parties' support through an act of will.[26] The Union requires that all parties participate out of a conscious egoism. If one party silently finds themselves to be suffering, but puts up and keeps the appearance, the Union has degenerated into something else.[26] This Union is not seen as an authority above a person's own will. Stirner's hyperindividualism puts him outside mainstream anarchist philosophy which emphasizes community and collective organization.[25]


Stirner criticizes conventional notions of revolution, arguing that social movements aimed at overturning the state are tacitly statist because they are implicitly aimed at the establishment of a new state thereafter.

Hegel's possible influence

Caricature of Max Stirner taken from a sketch by Friedrich Engels (1820–1895) of the meetings of Die Freien

Scholar Lawrence Stepelevich argues that G. W. F. Hegel was a major influence on The Ego and Its Own. While the latter has an "un-Hegelian structure and tone" on the whole and is hostile to Hegel's conclusions about the self and the world, Stepelevich argues that Stirner's work is best understood as answering Hegel's question of the role of consciousness after it has contemplated "untrue knowledge" and become "absolute knowledge". Stepelevich concludes that Stirner presents the consequences of the rediscovering one's self-consciousness after realizing self-determination.[27]

Scholars such as Douglas Moggach and Widukind De Ridder have argued that Stirner was obviously a student of Hegel, like his contemporaries Ludwig Feuerbach and Bruno Bauer, but this does not necessarily make him an Hegelian. Contrary to the Young Hegelians, Stirner scorned all attempts at an immanent critique of Hegel and the Enlightenment and renounced Bauer and Feuerbach's emancipatory claims as well. Contrary to Hegel, who considered the given as an inadequate embodiment of rationality, Stirner leaves the given intact by considering it a mere object, not of transformation, but of enjoyment and consumption ("His Own").[28] According to Moggach, Stirner does not go beyond Hegel, but in fact leaves the domain of philosophy in its entirety:

Stirner refused to conceptualize the human self, and rendered it devoid of any reference to rationality or universal standards. The self was moreover considered a field of action, a 'never-being I'. The 'I' had no essence to realize and life itself was a process of self-dissolution. Far from accepting, like the humanist Hegelians, a construal of subjectivity endowed with a universal and ethical mission, Stirner's notion of 'the Unique' (Der Einzige) distances itself from any conceptualization whatsoever: 'There is no development of the concept of the Unique. No philosophical system can be built out of it, as it can out of Being, or Thinking, or the I. Rather, with it, all development of the concept ceases. The person who views it as a principle thinks that he can treat it philosophically or theoretically and necessarily wastes his breath arguing against it'.

— Douglas Moggach and Widukind De Ridder[29]


The False Principle of Our Education

Main article: The False Principle of Our Education

In 1842, The False Principle of Our Education (Das unwahre Prinzip unserer Erziehung) was published in Rheinische Zeitung, which was edited by Marx at the time.[30] Written as a reaction to Otto Friedrich Theodor Heinsius' treatise Humanism vs. Realism, Stirner explains that education in either the classical humanist method or the practical realist method still lacks true value. Education is therefore fulfilled in aiding the individual in becoming an individual.

Art and Religion

Art and Religion (Kunst und Religion) was also published in Rheinische Zeitung on 14 June 1842. It addresses Bruno Bauer and his publication against Hegel called Hegel's Doctrine of Religion and Art Judged From the Standpoint of Faith. Bauer had inverted Hegel's relation between Art and Religion by claiming that Art was much more closely related to Philosophy than Religion, based on their shared determinacy and clarity, and a common ethical root. However, Stirner went beyond both Hegel and Bauer's criticism by asserting that Art rather created an object for Religion and could thus by no means be related to what Stirner considered—in opposition with Hegel and Bauer—to be Philosophy, saying:

[Philosophy] neither stands opposed to an Object, as Religion, nor makes one, as Art, but rather places its pulverizing hand upon all the business of making Objects as well as the whole of objectivity itself, and so breathes the air of freedom. Reason, the spirit of Philosophy, concerns itself only with itself, and troubles itself over no Object.

— Max Stirner[31]

Stirner deliberately left Philosophy out of the dialectical triad (Art–Religion–Philosophy) by claiming that Philosophy "doesn't bother itself with objects" (Religion), nor does it "make an object" (Art). In Stirner's account, Philosophy was in fact indifferent towards both Art and Religion. Stirner thus mocked and radicalised Bauer's criticism of religion.[28]

The Ego and Its Own

Main article: The Ego and Its Own

Stirner's main work is The Ego and Its Own (Der Einzige und sein Eigenthum), which appeared in Leipzig in October 1844, with as year of publication mentioned 1845. In The Ego And Its Own, Stirner launches a radical anti-authoritarian and individualist critique of contemporary Prussian society and modern western society as such. He offers an approach to human existence in which he depicts himself as "the unique one", a "creative nothing", beyond the ability of language to fully express:

If I concern myself for myself, the unique one, then my concern rests on its transitory, mortal creator, who consumes himself, and I may say: All things are nothing to me.

— Max Stirner[32]

The book proclaims that all religions and ideologies rest on empty concepts. The same holds true for society's institutions that claim authority over the individual, be it the state, legislation, the church, or the systems of education such as universities.

Stirner's argument explores and extends the limits of criticism, aiming his critique especially at those of his contemporaries, particularly Ludwig Feuerbach and Bruno Bauer; and at popular ideologies, including religion, liberalism and humanism (which he regarded as analogous to religion with the abstract Man or humanity as the supreme being), nationalism, statism, capitalism, socialism and communism:

In the time of spirits thoughts grew till they overtopped my head, whose offspring they yet were; they hovered about me and convulsed me like fever-phantasies – an awful power. The thoughts had become corporeal on their own account, were ghosts, e. g. God, Emperor, Pope, Fatherland, etc. If I destroy their corporeity, then I take them back into mine, and say: "I alone am corporeal." And now I take the world as what it is to me, as mine, as my property; I refer all to myself.

— Max Stirner[33]

Stirner's Critics

Stirner's Critics (Recensenten Stirners) was published in September 1845 in Wigands Vierteljahrsschrift. It is a response in which Stirner refers to himself in the third-person to three critical reviews of The Ego and its Own by Moses Hess in Die letzten Philosophen (The Last Philosophers), by a certain Szeliga (alias of an adherent of Bruno Bauer) in an article in the journal Norddeutsche Blätter, and by Ludwig Feuerbach anonymously in an article called On 'The Essence of Christianity' in Relation to Stirner's 'The Ego and its Own' (Über 'Das Wesen des Christentums' in Beziehung auf Stirners 'Der Einzige und sein Eigentum') in Wigands Vierteljahrsschrift.

Portrait of Max Stirner

The Philosophical Reactionaries

The Philosophical Reactionaries (Die Philosophischen Reactionäre) was published in 1847 in Die Epigonen, a journal edited by Otto Wigand from Leipzig. At the time, Wigand had already published The Ego and Its Own and was about to finish the publication of Stirner's translations of Adam Smith and Jean-Baptiste Say. As the subtitle indicates, The Philosophiscal Reactionaries was written in response to a 1847 article by Kuno Fischer (1824–1907) entitled The Modern Soliphist (Die Moderne Sophisten). The article was signed G. Edward and its authorship has been disputed ever since John Henry Mackay "cautiously" attributed it to Stirner and included it in his collection of Stirner's lesser writings. It was first translated into English in 2011 and the introductory note explains:

Mackay based his attribution of this text to Stirner on Kuno Fischer's subsequent reply to it, in which the latter, 'with such determination', identified G. Edward as Max Stirner. The article was entitled 'Ein Apologet der Sophistik und "ein Philosophischer Reactionäre"' and was published alongside 'Die Philosophischen Reactionäre'. Moreover, it seems rather odd that Otto Wigand would have published 'Edward's' piece back- to-back with an article that falsely attributed it to one of his personal associates at the time. And, indeed, as Mackay went on to argue, Stirner never refuted this attribution. This remains, however, a slim basis on which to firmly identify Stirner as the author. This circumstantial evidence has led some scholars to cast doubts over Stirner's authorship, based on both the style and content of 'Die Philosophischen Reactionäre'. One should, however, bear in mind that it was written almost three years after Der Einzige und sein Eigentum, at a time when Young Hegelianism had withered away.

— Max Stirner[34]

The majority of the text deals with Kuno Fischer's definition of sophism. With much wit, the self-contradictory nature of Fischer's criticism of sophism is exposed. Fischer had made a sharp distinction between sophism and philosophy while at the same time considering it as the "mirror image of philosophy". The sophists breathe "philosophical air" and were "dialectically inspired to a formal volubility". Stirner's answer is striking:

Have you philosophers really no clue that you have been beaten with your own weapons? Only one clue. What can your common sense reply when I dissolve dialectically what you have merely posited dialectically? You have showed me with what kind of 'volubility' one can turn everything to nothing and nothing to everything, black into white and white into black. What do you have against me, when I return to you your pure art?

— Max Stirner[35]

Looking back on The Ego and Its Own, Stirner claims:

Stirner himself has described his book as, in part, a clumsy expression of what he wanted to say. It is the arduous work of the best years of his life, and yet he calls it, in part, 'clumsy'. That is how hard he struggled with a language that was ruined by philosophers, abused by state-, religious- and other believers, and enabled a boundless confusion of ideas.

— Max Stirner[36]

History of Reaction

History of Reaction (Geschichte der Reaktion) was published in two volumes in 1851 by Allgemeine Deutsche Verlags-Anstalt and immediately banned in Austria.[10] It was written in the context of the recent 1848 revolutions in German states and is mainly a collection of the works of others selected and translated by Stirner. The introduction and some additional passages were Stirner's work. Edmund Burke and Auguste Comte are quoted to show two opposing views of revolution.

Critical reception

Stirner's work did not go unnoticed among his contemporaries. Stirner's attacks on ideology—in particular Feuerbach's humanism—forced Feuerbach into print. Moses Hess (at that time close to Marx) and Szeliga (pseudonym of Franz Zychlin von Zychlinski, an adherent of Bruno Bauer) also replied to Stirner, who answered the criticism in a German periodical in the September 1845 article Stirner's Critics (Recensenten Stirners), which clarifies several points of interest to readers of the book—especially in relation to Feuerbach.

While Marx's Saint Max (Sankt Max), a large part of The German Ideology (Die Deutsche Ideologie), was not published until 1932 and thus assured The Ego and Its Own a place of curious interest among Marxist readers, Marx's ridicule of Stirner has played a significant role in the preservation of Stirner's work in popular and academic discourse despite lacking mainstream popularity.

Comments by contemporaries

Twenty years after the appearance of Stirner's book, the author Friedrich Albert Lange wrote the following:

Stirner went so far in his notorious work, 'Der Einzige und Sein Eigenthum' (1845), as to reject all moral ideas. Everything that in any way, whether it be external force, belief, or mere idea, places itself above the individual and his caprice, Stirner rejects as a hateful limitation of himself. What a pity that to this book – the extremest that we know anywhere – a second positive part was not added. It would have been easier than in the case of Schelling's philosophy; for out of the unlimited Ego I can again beget every kind of Idealism as my will and my idea. Stirner lays so much stress upon the will, in fact, that it appears as the root force of human nature. It may remind us of Schopenhauer.

— Friedrich Albert Lange[37]

Some people believe that in a sense a "second positive part" was soon to be added, though not by Stirner, but by Friedrich Nietzsche. The relationship between Nietzsche and Stirner seems to be much more complicated.[38] According to George J. Stack's Lange and Nietzsche,[39] Nietzsche read Lange's History of Materialism "again and again" and was therefore very familiar with the passage regarding Stirner.
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While Der Einzige was a critical success and attracted much reaction from famous philosophers after publication, it was out of print and the notoriety that it had provoked had faded many years before Stirner's death.[40] Stirner had a destructive impact on left-Hegelianism, but his philosophy was a significant influence on Marx and his magnum opus became a founding text of individualist anarchism.[40] Edmund Husserl once warned a small audience about the "seducing power" of Der Einzige, but he never mentioned it in his writing.[41] As the art critic and Stirner admirer Herbert Read observed, the book has remained "stuck in the gizzard" of Western culture since it first appeared.[42]

Many thinkers have read and been affected by The Ego and Its Own in their youth including Rudolf Steiner, Gustav Landauer, Victor Serge,[43] Carl Schmitt and Jürgen Habermas. Few openly admit any influence on their own thinking.[44] Ernst Jünger's book Eumeswil, had the character of the Anarch, based on Stirner's Einzige.[45] Several other authors, philosophers and artists have cited, quoted or otherwise referred to Max Stirner. They include Albert Camus in The Rebel (the section on Stirner is omitted from the majority of English editions including Penguin's), Benjamin Tucker, James Huneker,[46] Dora Marsden, Renzo Novatore, Emma Goldman,[47] Georg Brandes, John Cowper Powys,[48] Martin Buber,[49] Sidney Hook,[50] Robert Anton Wilson, Horst Matthai, Frank Brand, Marcel Duchamp, several writers of the Situationist International including Raoul Vaneigem[51] and Max Ernst. Oscar Wilde's The Soul of Man Under Socialism has caused some historians to speculate that Wilde (who could read German) was familiar with the book.[52]

Since its appearance in 1844, The Ego and Its Own has seen periodic revivals of popular, political and academic interest based around widely divergent translations and interpretations—some psychological, others political in their emphasis. Today, many ideas associated with post-left anarchy's criticism of ideology and uncompromising individualism are clearly related to Stirner's. His ideas were also adopted by post-anarchism, with Saul Newman largely in agreement with many of Stirner's criticisms of classical anarchism, including his rejection of revolution and essentialism.

Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels

Caricature by Engels of the meetings of Die Freien

Friedrich Engels commented on Stirner in poetry at the time of Die Freien:

Look at Stirner, look at him, the peaceful enemy of all constraint.
For the moment, he is still drinking beer,
Soon he will be drinking blood as though it were water.
When others cry savagely "down with the kings"
Stirner immediately supplements "down with the laws also."
Stirner full of dignity proclaims;
You bend your willpower and you dare to call yourselves free.
You become accustomed to slavery
Down with dogmatism, down with law.[53]

Engels once even recalled at how they were "great friends" (Duzbrüder).[14] In November 1844, Engels wrote a letter to Karl Marx in which he first reported a visit to Moses Hess in Cologne and then went on to note that during this visit Hess had given him a press copy of a new book by Stirner, The Ego and Its Own. In his letter to Marx, Engels promised to send a copy of the book to him, for it certainly deserved their attention as Stirner "had obviously, among the 'Free Ones', the most talent, independence and diligence".[14] To begin with, Engels was enthusiastic about the book and expressed his opinions freely in letters to Marx:

But what is true in his principle, we, too, must accept. And what is true is that before we can be active in any cause we must make it our own, egoistic cause -- and that in this sense, quite aside from any material expectations, we are communists in virtue of our egoism, that out of egoism we want to be human beings and not merely individuals.[54]

Later, Marx and Engels wrote a major criticism of Stirner's work. The number of pages Marx and Engels devote to attacking Stirner in the unexpurgated text of The German Ideology in which they derided him as Sankt Max (Saint Max) exceeds the total of Stirner's written works.[55] As Isaiah Berlin has described it, Stirner "is pursued through five hundred pages of heavy-handed mockery and insult".[56] The book was written in 1845–1846, but it was not published until 1932. Marx's lengthy ferocious polemic against Stirner has since been considered an important turning point in Marx's intellectual development from idealism to materialism. It has been argued that historical materialism was Marx's method of reconciling communism with a Stirnerite rejection of morality.[57]

Stirner and post-structuralism

See also: Post-anarchism

In his book Specters of Marx, influential French poststructuralist thinker Jacques Derrida dealt with Stirner and his relationship with Marx while also analysing Stirner's concept of "specters" or "spooks".[58] Gilles Deleuze, another key thinker associated with post-structuralism, mentions Stirner briefly in his book The Logic of Sense.[59] Saul Newman calls Stirner a proto-poststructuralist who on the one hand had essentially anticipated modern post-structuralists such as Foucault, Lacan, Deleuze and Derrida, but on the other had already transcended them, thus providing what they were unable to—i.e. a ground for a non-essentialist critique of present liberal capitalist society. This is particularly evident in Stirner's identification of the self with a "creative nothing", a thing that cannot be bound by ideology, inaccessible to representation in language.

Possible influence on Friedrich Nietzsche

Main article: Relationship between Friedrich Nietzsche and Max Stirner

The ideas of Stirner and Friedrich Nietzsche have often been compared and many authors have discussed apparent similarities in their writings, sometimes raising the question of influence.[60] During the early years of Nietzsche's emergence as a well-known figure in Germany, the only thinker discussed in connection with his ideas more often than Stirner was Arthur Schopenhauer.[61] It is certain that Nietzsche read about The Ego and Its Own, which was mentioned in Friedrich Albert Lange's History of Materialism and Karl Robert Eduard von Hartmann's Philosophy of the Unconscious, both of which Nietzsche knew well.[62] However, there is no indication that he actually read it as no mention of Stirner is known to exist anywhere in Nietzsche's publications, papers or correspondence.[63] In 2002, a biographical discovery revealed it is probable that Nietzsche had encountered Stirner's ideas before he read Hartmann and Lange in October 1865, when he met with Eduard Mushacke, an old friend of Stirner's during the 1840s.[64]

Yet as soon as Nietzsche's work began to reach a wider audience, the question of whether he owed a debt of influence to Stirner was raised. As early as 1891 when Nietzsche was still alive, though incapacitated by mental illness, Hartmann went so far as to suggest that he had plagiarized Stirner.[65] By the turn of the century, the belief that Nietzsche had been influenced by Stirner was so widespread that it became something of a commonplace at least in Germany, prompting one observer to note in 1907 that "Stirner's influence in modern Germany has assumed astonishing proportions, and moves in general parallel with that of Nietzsche. The two thinkers are regarded as exponents of essentially the same philosophy".[66]

From the beginning of what was characterized as "great debate"[67] regarding Stirner's possible positive influence on Nietzsche, serious problems with the idea were nonetheless noted.[68] By the middle of the 20th century, if Stirner was mentioned at all in works on Nietzsche, the idea of influence was often dismissed outright or abandoned as unanswerable.[69]

However, the idea that Nietzsche was influenced in some way by Stirner continues to attract a significant minority, perhaps because it seems necessary to explain the oft-noted (though arguably superficial) similarities in their writings.[70] In any case, the most significant problems with the theory of possible Stirner influence on Nietzsche are not limited to the difficulty in establishing whether the one man knew of or read the other. They also consist in determining if Stirner in particular might have been a meaningful influence on a man as widely read as Nietzsche.[71]

Rudolf Steiner

The individualist-anarchist orientation of Rudolf Steiner's early philosophy—before he turned to theosophy around 1900—has strong parallels to and was admittedly influenced by Stirner's conception of the ego, for which Steiner claimed to have provided a philosophical foundation.[72]


Main articles: Egoist anarchism and Individualist anarchism

Stirner's philosophy was important in the development of modern anarchist thought, particularly individualist anarchism and egoist anarchism. Although Stirner is usually associated with individualist anarchism, he was influential to many social anarchists such as anarcha-feminists Emma Goldman and Federica Montseny. In European individualist anarchism, he influenced its major proponents after him such as Émile Armand, Han Ryner, Renzo Novatore, John Henry Mackay, Miguel Giménez Igualada and Lev Chernyi.

In American individualist anarchism, he found adherence in Benjamin Tucker and his magazine Liberty while these abandoned natural rights positions for egoism.[73] Several periodicals "were undoubtedly influenced by Liberty's presentation of egoism". They included I, published by Clarence Lee Swartz and edited by William Walstein Gordak and J. William Lloyd (all associates of Liberty); and The Ego and The Egoist, both of which were edited by Edward H. Fulton. Among the egoist papers that Tucker followed, there were the German Der Eigene, edited by Adolf Brand; and The Eagle and The Serpent, issued from London. The latter, the most prominent English-language egoist journal, was published from 1898 to 1900 with the subtitle A Journal of Egoistic Philosophy and Sociology.[73] Other American egoist anarchists around the early 20th century include James L. Walker, George Schumm, John Beverley Robinson, Steven T. Byington and Edward H. Fulton.[73]

In the United Kingdom, Herbert Read was influenced by Stirner and noted the closeness of Stirner's egoism to existentialism (see existentialist anarchism). Later in the 1960s, Daniel Guérin says in Anarchism: From Theory to Practice that Stirner "rehabilitated the individual at a time when the philosophical field was dominated by Hegelian anti-individualism and most reformers in the social field had been led by the misdeeds of bourgeois egotism to stress its opposite" and pointed to "the boldness and scope of his thought".[74] In the 1970s, an American Situationist collective called For Ourselves published a book called The Right To Be Greedy: Theses On The Practical Necessity Of Demanding Everything in which they advocate a "communist egoism" basing themselves on Stirner.[75]

Later in the United States, it emerged the tendency of post-left anarchy which was influenced profoundly by Stirner in aspects such as the critique of ideology. Jason McQuinn says that "when I (and other anti-ideological anarchists) criticize ideology, it is always from a specifically critical, anarchist perspective rooted in both the skeptical, individualist-anarchist philosophy of Max Stirner".[76] Bob Black and Feral Faun/Wolfi Landstreicher strongly adhere to Stirnerist egoism. In the hybrid of post-structuralism and anarchism called post-anarchism, Saul Newman has written on Stirner and his similarities to post-structuralism. Insurrectionary anarchism also has an important relationship with Stirner as can be seen in the work of Wolfi Landstreicher and Alfredo Bonanno who has also written on him in works such as Max Stirner and Max Stirner and Anarchism.[77]

Free love, homosexuals and feminists

German Stirnerist Adolf Brand produced the homosexual periodical Der Eigene in 1896. This was the first ongoing homosexual publication in the world[78] and ran until 1931. The name was taken from the writings of Stirner (who had greatly influenced the young Brand) and refers to Stirner's concept of "self-ownership" of the individual. Another early homosexual activist influenced by Stirner was John Henry Mackay. Feminists influenced by Stirner include Dora Marsden who edited the journals The Freewoman and The New Freewoman and anarchist Emma Goldman. Stirner also influenced free love and polyamory propagandist Émile Armand in the context of French individualist anarchism of the early 20th century which is known for "[t]he call of nudist naturism, the strong defense of birth control methods, the idea of "unions of egoists" with the sole justification of sexual practices".[79]

See also

• Egoist anarchism
• Individualist anarchism in Europe
• Philosophy of Max Stirner
• Relationship between Friedrich Nietzsche and Max Stirner


1. The Encyclopedia of Philosophy, volume 8, The Macmillan Company and The Free Press, New York 1967.
2. Beiser, Frederick C., Weltschmerz: Pessimism in German Philosophy, 1860-1900, Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2016, p. 233.
3. Maurice Cranston on Max Stirner (1971)
4. Censorship and Literature in Fascist Italy. Pg. 33. Guido Bonsaver (2007)
5. Bernd A. Laska, Otto Gross zwischen Max Stirner und Wilhelm Reich, In: Raimund Dehmlow and Gottfried Heuer, eds.: 3. Internationaler Otto-Gross-Kongress, Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität, München. Marburg, 2003, pp. 125–162, ISBN 3-936134-06-5
6. Leopold, David (2006-08-04). "Max Stirner". In Zalta, Edward N. (ed.). Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
7. Goodway, David. Anarchist Seeds Beneath the Snow. Liverpool University Press, 2006, p. 99.
8. A Ready Reference to Philosophy East and West.
9. Anarchism: A Criticjsm and History of the Anarchist Theory.
10. Jump up to:a b c "John Henry Mackay: Max Stirner – Sein Leben und sein Werk". p. 28.
11. The Encyclopedia of Philosophy, volume 8, The Macmillan Company and The Free Press, New York 1967.
12. Stepelevich 1985, p. 602.
13. Marshall, Peter (1992). Demanding the Impossible. Harper Collins. p. 221. ISBN 0002178559.
14. Jump up to:a b c Lawrence L Stepelevich. The Revival of Max Stirner.
15. Gide, Charles and Rist, Charles. A History of Economic Doctrines from the Time of the Physiocrats to the Present Day. Harrap 1956, p. 612.
16. The Encyclopedia of Philosophy, vol. 8, The Macmillan Company and The Free Press, New York 1967.
17. Ibidem, Cambridge edition, pp. 37–38.
18. Heider, Ulrike. Anarchism: Left, Right and Green, San Francisco: City Lights Books, 1994, pp. 95–96.
19. Stirner, Max. The Ego and Its Own, p. 248.
20. Moggach, Douglas. The New Hegelians. Cambridge University Press, 2006 p. 194.
21. "Dora Marsden & Benjamin R. Tucker – Sidney E. Parker Archives". Retrieved 2019-11-28.
22. "The Gospel According to Malfew Seklew" (PDF).
23. "Archists, Anarchists and Egoists – Sidney E. Parker Archives". Retrieved 2019-11-28.
24. Thomas, Paul (1985). Karl Marx and the Anarchists. London: Routledge/Kegan Paul. p. 142. ISBN 0-7102-0685-2.
25. Jump up to:a b Cohn, Jesse (September 2002). "What is Postanarchism 'Post'?". Postmodern Culture. 13 (1). doi:10.1353/pmc.2002.0028. ISSN 1053-1920 – via Project MUSE.
26. Jump up to:a b Nyberg, Svein Olav. "The union of egoists" (PDF). Non Serviam. Oslo, Norway: Svein Olav Nyberg. 1: 13–14. OCLC 47758413. Archived from the original (PDF) on 7 December 2010. Retrieved 1 September 2012
27. Stepelevich 1985.
28. Jump up to:a b Moggach, Douglas and De Ridder, Widukind. "Hegelianism in Restoration Prussia, 1841–1848: Freedom, Humanism and 'Anti-Humanism' in Young Hegelian Thought". In: Hegel's Thought in Europe: Currents, Crosscurrents and Undercurrents, ed. Lisa Herzog (pp. 71–92). Basingstoke and New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2013, pp. 82–83.
29. "Hegelianism in Restoration Prussia,1841–1848: Freedom, Humanism and 'Anti-Humanism' in Young Hegelian Thought.", In: Hegel's Thought in Europe: Currents, Crosscurrents and Undercurrents, ed. Lisa Herzog (pp. 71–92). Basingstoke and New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2013, p. 75.
30. Encyclopaedia of Philosophy (1967). The Macmillan Company and The Free Press: New York.
31. Art and Religion, p. 110.
32. The Ego and Its Own, p. 324.
33. The Ego and Its Own, p. 17.
34. "The Philosophical Reactionaries: 'The Modern Sophists' by Kuno Fischer", Newman, Saul (ed.), Max Stirner (Critical Explorations in Contemporary Political Thought), Basingstoke and New York: Palgrave Macmillan, p. 90 (2011).
35. "The Philosophical Reactionaries: 'The Modern Sophists' by Kuno Fischer", Newman, Saul (ed.), Max Stirner (Critical Explorations in Contemporary Political Thought), Basingstoke and New York: Palgrave Macmillan, p. 99 (2011).
36. "The Philosophical Reactionaries: 'The Modern Sophists' by Kuno Fischer", Newman, Saul (ed.), Max Stirner (Critical Explorations in Contemporary Political Thought), Basingstoke and New York: Palgrave Macmillan, p. 104 (2011).
37. History of Materialism, ii. 256 (1865).
38. See Bernd A. Laska: Nietzsche's initial crisis. In: Germanic Notes and Reviews, vol. 33, n. 2, Fall/Herbst 2002, pp. 109–133.
39. George J. Stack, Lange and Nietzsche, Walter de Gruyter, Berlin, New York, 1983, p. 12, ISBN 978-3-11-008866-3.
40. Jump up to:a b Zalta, Edward N. (ed.). "Max Stirner". Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
41. "Max Stirner, a durable dissident – in a nutshell".
42. Quoted in Read's book, "The Contrary Experience", Faber and Faber, 1963.
43. See Memoirs of a revolutionary, 1901–1941 by Victor Serge. Publisher Oxford U.P., 1967.
44. See Bernd A. Laska: Ein dauerhafter Dissident. Nürnberg: LSR-Verlag 1996 (online).
45. See Bernd A. Laska: Katechon und Anarch. Nürnberg: LSR-Verlag 1997 (online).
46. Huneker's book Egoists, a Book of Supermen (1909)contains an essay on Stirner.
47. See Goldman, Anarchism and Other Essays, p. 50.
48. Wilson, A. N. (1 November 2004). "World of books". The Daily Telegraph. London. Retrieved 12 May 2010.
49. Between Man and Man by Martin Buber, Beacon Press, 1955.
50. From Hegel to Marx by Sidney Hook, London, 1936.
51. "The long revolution is preparing to write works in the ink of action whose unknown or nameless authors will flock to join Sade, Fourier, Babeuf, Marx, Lacenaire, Stirner, Lautréamont, L'hautier, Vaillant, Henry, Villa, Zapata, Makhno, the Communards, the insurrectionaries of Hamburg, Kiel, Kronstadt, Asturias – all those who have not yet played their last card in a game which we have only just joined: the great gamble whose stake is freedom". Raoul Vaneigem. The Revolution of Everyday Life.
52. David Goodway, Anarchist Seeds Beneath the Snow, Liverpool University Press, 2006. p. 75.
53. Henri Arvon, Aux sources de 1'existentialisme Max Stirner (Paris, 1954), p. 14.
54. Zwischen 18 and 25, pp. 237–238.
55. "Chapter Sankt Max in Die deutsche Ideologie.
56. I. Berlin, Karl Marx (New York, 1963), 143.
57. G. Stedman-Jones, 'Introduction' in K. Marx and F. Engels, The Communist Manifesto (London, 2002).
58. Jacques Derrida. Specters of Marx. Routledge. 1994.
59. "Human or divine, as Stirner said, the predicates are the same whether they belong analytically to the divine being, or whether they are synthetically bound to the human form" (Gilles Deleuze. The Logic of Sense. Continuum. 2004). p. 122.
60. Albert Levy, Stirner and Nietzsche, Paris, 1904; Robert Schellwien, Max Stirner and Friedrich Nietzsche, 1892; H.L. Mencken, The Philosophy of Friedrich Nietzsche, 1908; K. Löwith, From Hegel To Nietzsche New York, 1964, p. 187; R. A. Nicholls, "Beginnings of the Nietzsche Vogue in Germany", in Modern Philology, Vol. 56, No. 1, August 1958, pp. 24–37; T. A. Riley, "Anti-Statism in German Literature, as Exemplified by the Work of John Henry Mackay", in PMLA, Vol. 62, No. 3, September 1947, pp. 828–843; Seth Taylor, Left Wing Nietzscheans, The Politics of German Expressionism 1910–1920, p. 144, 1990, Walter de Gruyter, Berlin/New York; Gilles Deleuze, Nietzsche et la Philosophy, Presses Universitaires de France, 1962; R. C. Solomon and K. M. Higgins, The Age of German Idealism, p. 300, Routledge, 1993.
61. While discussion of possible influence has never ceased entirely, the period of most intense discussion occurred between 1892 and 1900 in the German-speaking world. During this time, the most comprehensive account of Nietzsche's reception in the German language, the 4-volume work of Richard Frank Krummel called Nietzsche und der deutsche Geist, indicates 83 entries discussing Stirner and Nietzsche. The only thinker more frequently discussed in connection with Nietzsche during this time is Schopenhauer, with about twice the number of entries. Discussion steadily declines thereafter, but it is still significant. Nietzsche and Stirner show 58 entries between 1901 and 1918. From 1919 to 1945, there are 28 entries regarding Nietzsche and Stirner.
62. "Apart from the information which can be gained from the annotations, the library (and the books Nietzsche read) shows us the extent, and the bias, of Nietzsche's knowledge of many fields, such as evolution and cosmology. Still more obvious, the library shows us the extent and the bias of Nietzsche's knowledge about many persons to whom he so often refers with ad hominem statements in his works. This includes not only such important figures as Mill, Kant, and Pascal but also such minor ones (for Nietzsche) as Max Stirner and William James who are both discussed in books Nietzsche read". T. H. Brobjer, "Nietzsche's Reading and Private Library", 1885–1889, in Journal of the History of Ideas, Vol. 58, No. 4, October 1997, pp. 663–693; Stack believes it is doubtful that Nietzsche read Stirner, but notes "he was familiar with the summary of his theory he found in Lange's history." George J. Stack, Lange and Nietzsche, Walter de Gruyter, 1983, p. 276.
63. Albert Levy, Stirner and Nietzsche, Paris, 1904.
64. Bernd A. Laska: Nietzsche's initial crisis. In: Germanic Notes and Reviews, vol. 33, n. 2, fall/Herbst 2002, pp. 109–133.
65. Eduard von Hartmann, Nietzsches "neue Moral", in Preussische Jahrbücher, 67. Jg., Heft 5, May 1891, S. 501–521; augmented version with more express reproach of plagiarism in: Ethische Studien, Leipzig, Haacke 1898, pp. 34–69.
66. This author believes that one should be careful in comparing the two men. However, he notes: "It is this intensive nuance of individualism that appeared to point from Nietzsche to Max Stirner, the author of the remarkable work Der Einzige und sein Eigentum. Stirner's influence in modern Germany has assumed astonishing proportions, and moves in general parallel with that of Nietzsche. The two thinkers are regarded as exponents of essentially the same philosophy." O. Ewald, "German Philosophy in 1907", in The Philosophical Review, Vol. 17, No. 4, July 1908, pp. 400–426.
67. [in the last years of the nineteenth century] "The question of whether Nietzsche had read Stirner was the subject of great debate" R.A. Nicholls, "Beginnings of the Nietzsche Vogue in Germany", in Modern Philology, Vol. 56, No. 1, August 1958, pp. 29–30.
68. Levy pointed out in 1904 that the similarities in the writing of the two men appeared superficial. Albert Levy, Stirner and Nietzsche, Paris, 1904
69. R. A. Nicholls, "Beginnings of the Nietzsche Vogue in Germany", in Modern Philology, Vol. 56, No. 1, August 1958, pp. 24–37.
70. "Stirner, like Nietzsche, who was clearly influenced by him, has been interpreted in many different ways", Saul Newman, From Bakunin to Lacan: Anti-authoritarianism and the Dislocation of Power, Lexington Books, 2001, p. 56; "We do not even know for sure that Nietzsche had read Stirner. Yet, the similarities are too striking to be explained away". R. A. Samek, The Meta Phenomenon, p. 70, New York, 1981; Tom Goyens, (referring to Stirner's book The Ego and His Own) "The book influenced Friedrich Nietzsche, and even Marx and Engels devoted some attention to it". T. Goyens, Beer and Revolution: The German Anarchist Movement In New York City, p. 197, Illinois, 2007.
71. "We have every reason to suppose that Nietzsche had a profound knowledge of the Hegelian movement, from Hegel to Stirner himself. The philosophical learning of an author is not assessed by the number of quotations, nor by the always fanciful and conjectural check lists of libraries, but by the apologetic or polemical directions of his work itself". Gilles Deleuze (translated by Hugh Tomlinson), Nietzsche and Philosophy, 1962 (2006 reprint, pp. 153–154).
72. Guido Giacomo Preparata, "Perishable Money in a Threefold Commonwealth: Rudolf Steiner and the Social Economics of an Anarchist Utopia". Review of Radical Economics 38/4 (Fall 2006). pp. 619–648.
73. Jump up to:a b c "Only the influence of the German philosopher of egoism, Max Stirner (né Johann Kaspar Schmidt, 1806–1856), as expressed through The Ego and His Own (Der Einzige und sein Eigentum) compared with that of Proudhon. In adopting Stirnerite egoism (1886), Tucker rejected natural rights which had long been considered the foundation of libertarianism. This rejection galvanized the movement into fierce debates, with the natural rights proponents accusing the egoists of destroying libertarianism itself. So bitter was the conflict that a number of natural rights proponents withdrew from the pages of Liberty in protest even though they had hitherto been among its frequent contributors. Thereafter, Liberty championed egoism although its general content did not change significantly". Wendy Mcelroy. "Benjamin Tucker, Individualism, & Liberty: Not the Daughter but the Mother of Order".
74. Daniel Guérin,Anarchism: From Theory to Practice
75. "Four Ourselves, The Right To Be Greedy: Theses On The Practical Necessity Of Demanding Everything". Archived 22 June 2013 at the Wayback Machine
76. "What is Ideology?" by Jason McQuinn.
77. "Bonanno, Alfredo Maria". Archived from the original on 10 July 2009. Retrieved 10 July 2009.
78. Karl Heinrich Ulrichs had begun a journal called Prometheus in 1870, but only one issue was published. Kennedy, Hubert, Karl Heinrich Ulrichs: First Theorist of Homosexuality, In: 'Science and Homosexualities', ed. Vernon Rosario. New York: Routledge, 1997, pp. 26–45.
79. Xavier Diez. "La insumisión voluntaria. El anarquismo individualista español durante la dictadura y la Segunda República".


• Stirner, Max: Der Einzige und sein Eigentum (1845 [October 1844]). Stuttgart: Reclam-Verlag, 1972ff; English translation The Ego and Its Own (1907), ed. David Leopold, Cambridge/ New York: CUP 1995.
• Stirner, Max: "Recensenten Stirners" (September 1845). In: Parerga, Kritiken, Repliken, Bernd A. Laska, ed., Nürnberg: LSR-Verlag, 1986; English translation Stirner's Critics (abridged), see below.
• Max Stirner, Political Liberalism (1845).
Further reading[edit]
• Max Stirner's 'Der Einzige und sein Eigentum' im Spiegel der zeitgenössischen deutschen Kritik. Eine Textauswahl (1844–1856). Hg. Kurt W. Fleming. Leipzig: Verlag Max-Stirner-Archiv 2001 (Stirneriana).
• Arena, Leonardo V., Note ai margini del nulla, ebook, 2013.
• Arvon, Henri, Aux Sources de l'existentialisme, Paris: P.U.F. 1954.
• Essbach, Wolfgang, Gegenzüge. Der Materialismus des Selbst. Eine Studie über die Kontroverse zwischen Max Stirner und Karl Marx. Frankfurt: Materialis 1982.
• Feiten, Elmo (2013). "Would the Real Max Stirner Please Stand Up?". Anarchist Developments in Cultural Studies. ISSN 1923-5615.
• Helms, Hans G, Die Ideologie der anonymen Gesellschaft. Max Stirner 'Einziger' und der Fortschritt des demokratischen Selbstbewusstseins vom Vormärz bis zur Bundesrepublik, Köln: Du Mont Schauberg, 1966.
• Koch, Andrew M., "Max Stirner: The Last Hegelian or the First Poststructuralist". In: Anarchist Studies, vol. 5 (1997) pp. 95–108.
• Laska, Bernd A., Ein dauerhafter Dissident. Eine Wirkungsgeschichte des Einzigen, Nürnberg: LSR-Verlag 1996 (TOC, index).
• Laska, Bernd A., Ein heimlicher Hit. Editionsgeschichte des "Einzigen". Nürnberg: LSR-Verlag 1994 (abstract).
• Marshall, Peter H. "Max Stirner" in "Demanding the Impossible: A History of Anarchism "(London: HarperCollins, 1992).
• Moggach, Douglas; De Ridder, Widukind, "Hegelianism in Restoration Prussia,1841–1848: Freedom, Humanism and 'Anti-Humanism' in Young Hegelian Thought". In: Herzog, Lisa (ed.): Hegel's Thought in Europe: Currents, Crosscurrents and Undercurrents. Basingstoke and New York, Palgrave Macmillan, 2013, pp. 71–92 (Google Books).
• Newman, Saul (ed.), Max Stirner (Critical Explorations in Contemporary Political Thought), Basingstoke and New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2011 (full book).
• Newman, Saul, Power and Politics in Poststructural Thought. London and New York: Routledge 2005.
• Parvulescu, C. "The Individualist Anarchist Discourse of Early Interwar Germany". Cluj University Press, 2018 (full book).
• Paterson, R. W. K., The Nihilistic Egoist: Max Stirner, Oxford: Oxford University Press 1971.
• Spiessens, Jeff. The Radicalism of Departure. A Reassessment of Max Stirner's Hegelianism, Cambridge Scholars Publishing: Newcastle upon Tyne, 2018.
• Stepelevich, Lawrence S. (1985). "Max Stirner as Hegelian". Journal of the History of Ideas. 46 (4): 597–614. doi:10.2307/2709548. ISSN 0022-5037. JSTOR 2709548.
• Stepelevich, Lawrence S., Ein Menschenleben. Hegel and Stirner". In: Moggach, Douglas (ed.): The New Hegelians. Philosophy and Politics in the Hegelian School. Cambridge, Cambridge University Press, 2006, pp. 166–176.
• Welsh, John F. Max Stirner's Dialectical Egoism: A New Interpretation. Lexington Books. 2010.
• Wilkinson, Will (2008). "Stirner, Max (1806–1856)". In Hamowy, Ronald (ed.). The Encyclopedia of Libertarianism. Thousand Oaks, CA: SAGE; Cato Institute. pp. 493–494. doi:10.4135/9781412965811.n300. ISBN 978-1-4129-6580-4. LCCN 2008009151. OCLC 750831024.
• Di Mascio, Carlo, Stirner Giuspositivista. Rileggendo l'Unico e la sua proprietà, 2 ed., Edizioni Del Faro, Trento, 2015, p. 253, ISBN 978-88-6537-378-1.

External links

• Works written by or about Max Stirner at Wikisource
• Quotations related to Max Stirner at Wikiquote
• Media related to Max Stirner at Wikimedia Commons


• Zalta, Edward N. (ed.). "Max Stirner". Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy., an extensive introduction
• Svein Olav Nybergs website on Max Stirner, with extensive links to texts and references
• Max Stirner within the LSR project (English section)
• Max Stirner Project by H. Ibrahim Türkdogan
• Archive of texts on Stirner at the Anarchist Library
Relationship with other philosophers[edit]
• "Max Stirner, a durable dissident -- in a nutshell -- 'How Marx and Nietzsche suppressed their colleague Max Stirner and why he has intellectually survived them'
• Stirner Delighted in His Construction – "loves miracles, but can only perform a logical miracle", by Karl Marx
• Nietzsche's initial crisis due to an encounter with Stirner's "The Ego", by Bernd A. Laska (2002)
• "At the End of the Path of Doubt: Max Stirner", By Lawrence S. Stepelevich (Owl of Minerva 41:1–2 (2009–2010) pp. 85–106)


• Works by Max Stirner at Project Gutenberg
• Works by or about Max Stirner at Internet Archive
• Works by Max Stirner at LibriVox (public domain audiobooks)
• Online book Der Einzige und sein Eigentum
• The complete original text in German of Der Einzige und sein Eigentum
• The complete English edition of "The Ego and his Own", in the translation of Steven T. Byington.
• Some of Stirner's illuminating "Shorter Essays", translated into English
• Recensenten Stirners / Stirner's Critics bilingual: full text in German / abridged text in English (trans. Frederick M. Gordon)
• Stirner's Critics by Max Stirner translated by Wolfi Landstreicher, with an introduction by Jason McQuinn (2013 revision of the only full-text English translation of both "Stirner's Critics" and "The Philosophical Reactionaries" by Wolfi Landstreicher published by CAL Press)
• Archive of the 4 works of Stirner translated into English including a 2011 complete translation of Stirner´s Critics (translated by Wolfi Landstreicher at the Anarchist Library)
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Re: Freda Bedi, by Wikipedia

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Alexandra David-Neel's Adventures in Tibet: Fact or Fiction?
by Braham Norwick
The Tibet Journal
Vol. 1, No. 3/4, Special Issue : “Tibet: A Living Tradition”: Proceedings of a Symposium held at The Newark Museum (Autumn 1976), pp. 70-74
Published by: Library of Tibetan Works and Archives
Autumn, 1976



Braham Norwick was born on July 6, 1916 in New York City, New York, United States; the son of Mark and Rose (Ungar) Norwick.

Norwick received a Bachelor of Science degree in Chemistry from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in 1938.

Norwick began his career as a technical director at Beaunit Mills, Inc. in 1938 and had held it for forty years. He served in the United States Army from 1943 to 1946. In 1973, he was appointed a vice president of Joseph Bancroft & Sons Company, where he worked until 1978. In 1980 Braham became an expert witness of Technical Architecture Group. In 1983 he was appointed a columnist at Maschen Industrie. Norwick was a visiting professor at Cornell University....

Works: Locating Tibet: The maps 1988

Locating Tibet: The Maps: This article looks at the different possibilities and implications of the maps that could have been housed at the legendary libraries of Shangri la. (Mark Premo-Hopkins 2004-05-06)

-- Search Results for Author/Creator Braham Norwick, by The Tibetan & Himalayan Library

The lamasery, however, had more to offer than a display of Chinoiserie. One of its features, for instance, was a very delightful library, lofty and spacious, and containing a multitude of books so retiringly housed in bays and alcoves that the whole atmosphere was more of wisdom than of learning, of good manners rather than seriousness. Conway, during a rapid glance at some of the shelves, found much to astonish him; the world's best literature was there, it seemed, as well as a great deal of abstruse and curious stuff that he could not appraise. Volumes in English, French, German, and Russian abounded, and there were vast quantities of Chinese and other Eastern scripts. A section which interested him particularly was devoted to Tibetiana, if it might be so called; he noticed several rarities, among them the Novo Descubrimento de grao catayo ou dos Regos de Tibet, by Antonio de Andrada (Lisbon, 1626); Athanasius Kircher's China (Antwerp, 1667); Thevenot's Voyage à la Chine des Pères Grueber et d'Orville; and Beligatti's Relazione Inedita di un Viaggio al Tibet.

-- Lost Horizon, by James Hilton

Norwick was a member of American Society for Testing and Material, American Society for Quality Control, American Chemical Society, American Association of Textile Chemists and Colorists, New York Academy of Sciences and Chemists Club.

-- Braham Norwick, by Prabook

A frequent question mature Tibetan language students and art collectors hear is "What got you started?" Usually, we find the question difficult to answer simply, since the truth is multifaced, like a diamond in the subconscious, hidden by the past. A fairly likely, non-mystical reason for some is that they were, at an impressionable age, exposed to the writings of a remarkable woman, Alexandra David-Neel. In her books, even youngsters, while swept along by the exotic and the unremitting suspense, were able to sense and appreciate this liberated woman's forthright altitude. She was a rational mystic, unprejudiced by received conclusions from any source, trying with difficulty to keep her feet on the ground, careful, cautious, not fearless but brave, not dishonest, but a wonderful actress and liar when need be, and always for a philosophic purpose, with white lies and stellar performances. She was ever curious, evidently a good listener, because she picked up so many good stories. At times, one would wonder why a reasonable person involved herself with such frequent predicaments, but then one could only consider how much we would have liked to have been with her, and shared her adventures.

Surprisingly, though she lived to be over a hundred and only died in 1969, not much has been known about her except through her books. Despite the clarity of her thought, which allowed her books to survive translation into many languages, she managed to be rather reticent about a host of personal details.

And then early in 1972, a short and libellous publication, A. David-Neel au Tibet [Alexandra David-Neel in Tibet: trickery uncovered] appeared, and the thesis was clear. From the point of view of the author, whose pseudonym was Jeanne Denys, Madame Alexandra David-Neel was presumably relegated to the large category of people who pretended to have visited Tibet, but in fact never went there. Not only that, but Mademoiselle Denys claimed the photographs were faked. She began her book with a quotation from America's President Lincoln: "One can fool all the people some of the lime, and some of the people all of the time, but one can't fool all the people all the time." Mademoiselle Denys cited numbers of details she evidently considered pejorative, many of a type carping and inconsequential in balance, though valid information if true. Of course, knowing facts is not the same as understanding what they signify. Among her statements are the following: Alexandra David-Neel was actually christened Alexandrine. Her parents, though Catholic at the time of her birth, were of Jewish families and spoke Yiddish at home. These parents, both of academic family backgrounds, had always been poor, but were not in "reduced circumstances". David-Neel had worked in a store. She had studied music and singing, not philosophy nor languages. She had had a career touring as a singer and actress. She had never learned Tibetan, nor was there any Tibetan material in her home. She beat her servants. She always came running to the missionaries when in trouble, but engaged in back-biting attacks on them. What philosophy she knew was a smattering cadged from other writers. She had had no initiations, never interviewed the Dalai nor the Panchen Lamas, never went to Shi-ga-tze (gShis-ga-rtze), nor met the Pan-chen Lama's (bla-ma) mother, was never in Lhasa, nor Ku-bum (sKu-'bum) and even if she had been to some of the places she claimed, could never have carried on the conversations she reported, since the people in these areas spoke such different tongues as to be mutually incomprehensible. Mademoiselle Denys claims the adopted son Yongden was not only no lama, but had no religious training. When she saw his room, she found no sign a saintly man had lived in it, since, as she puts it, there was not even a bed in the room -- this primitive had slept on the floor. Mademoiselle Denys quotes others to confirm her conclusions; missionaries, diplomats and even some scholars. She is not the only one to ask about exact dales for trips, routes, names, and to find Yongden far from extraordinary.

Fortunately for those of us who prefer to keep some of the happy illusions of our youth, we have been able to refute, one by one, all of the important canards against Alexandra David-Neel, thanks to a series, still incomplete, of publications written or arranged by another most interesting woman, Marie-Madeleine Peyronnet, and by a careful comparison of David-Neel's publications in different languages.

Mademoiselle Denys, who had just retired, spent a few weeks at Samten Dzong (bSam-gten rDzong) with David-Neel when the latter was approaching ninety. They did not get along, and when Mademoiselle Denys accused David-Neel of never having done what she had claimed in her books, David-Neel ironically replied that she should prove it, as it would be good publicity for David-Neel's books.
The next day, Mademoiselle Denys left.

According to Jeanne Denys’ Alexandra David-Néel au Tibet. Une supercherie dévoilée, Paris: La Pensée universelle, 1972, the editor explicitly asked David-Néel to stuff her adventure narratives and novels with such anecdotes; Denys, who was her former librarian in Digne, accused her of fraud and claimed that her accounts amounted to falsification and pure deception.... I argue here that David-Néel certainly played with the readers’ expectancies.... she sets new literary standards for the question of reality/fiction that she was trying out.

-- From the Guimet Museum to De-Chen Ashram: Alexandra David-Neel, Buddhism and Fiction, by Samuel Thévoz

A short time later, Marie-Madeleine Peyronnet arrived and spent the next ten years with Madame David-Neel. Mademoiselle Peyronnet's book, Dix Ans Avec Alexandra David-Neel is a warm and exciting insight into the lives of two admirable people. Last spring, the first volume of the letters of Alexandra David-Neel to her husband were published. These cover the years 1904 to 1917 and we can expect the letters of 1918 to 1941 to follow early in 1976. For all of these letters still exist, along with the stamped envelopes, the pictures, the Tibetan artifacts, all preserved at Samten Dzong, the fortress of meditation in Digne, a mountain town of Haute Provence. The house is now a museum, and scholars are welcomed.

Since the Correspondance has not been published in English, the translations of all quoted letters are mine. On the editing of the letters, see Marie-Madeleine Peyronnet’s prefaces to the letters (pp. 11–32). David-Néel wrote the letters intending to use them later as an aide-mémoire (hence the title Journal de voyage) and asked Philippe to keep the most important of them (see Correspondance, p. 167). A few days before her death, she handed the three suitcases that contained them to her secretary, Marie-Madeleine Peyronnet, trusting that she would make good use of them. Moved by their unexpected frankness and sensing that they gave access to a new dimension of David-Néel public and print persona, Peyronnet decided to publish them with considerable editing: passages about physical hard times, financial difficulties, but also Sanskrit and Tibetan expressions and lengthy descriptions have been reduced....

The dates are only indicative, since they refer to the headings of the letters and hence can reveal some interval with the actual time of travel.

-- From the Guimet Museum to De-Chen Ashram: Alexandra David-Neel, Buddhism and Fiction, by Samuel Thévoz

In the English version of David-Neel's most famous book, My Journey to Lhasa, on which one can see she was much directly involved, since she comments on her choice of English words, there is nothing said about a camera, but there are four pictures taken in Lhasa. In the French version, Voyage d'Une Parisienne a Lhassa, she explains how she had been stopped in a previous attempt, when the authorities had discovered cameras in the baggage of Yongden, and had then tracked her down. This had been the time when she had left from Kye kun-do (sKye-rku-mdo). Her Lhasa pictures, she explains, had been taken by Tibetan pholographers in Lhasa, and this explains why they are so different, somewhat peculiar, and how they were made without exciting suspicion. Questions of dates are fully answered by the dated letters and postmarks, though occasionally Alexandra David-Neel herself is not exactly sure which day of the month it may be at the time of writing.

Since the letters exist, one may question why dates are so vague in the books. The answers are in the books themselves, but are clearer in the letters. Those who know what happened to Tibetans who had aided two previous travellers to Tibet, Sarat Chandra Das and Ekai Kawaguchi, already have an insight into her caution; but David-Neel specifically explains what happened even to the Sikkimese villagers who had lived near her dwelling when she made her trip to Shi-ga-tze to see the Panchen Lama and his mother. They had been fined Rs. 200/- by the British Resident, and in revenge, had sacked and destroyed her place. Moreover, she had been expelled from Sikkim. This was late July 1916. It is interesting to read her letter of June 20, 1916, asking her husband not to use the word Tibet in his letters, which may be opened by the censor, and her theories later, while still at De-chen (bDe-chen) Ashram, why the Resident had made such an issue of her trip, with fines and punishments; the missionaries especially were upset that she could go in and they were persona non grata. She had first arrived in Gangtok in April 1912, establishing a close relationship with the royal family of Sikkim, and not leaving until she went to Pema Yangtze (Pad-ma dyongs-rtze) in October; she remained in Nepal until March 1913, then going to Benares, and left from there in December to return to Gangtok. On October 6, 1914, she wrote from Tibet, at the time of her first crossing of the border, at Cho-te Nyi-ma Gon-pa (mChod-rten Nyi-ma dGon-pa). She had decided to live and study not far from the border in La-chen, until she moved still closer to the border at Dewa Thang in the spring of 1915. She remained at De-chen Ashram through the end of June 1916; early in July 1916 she was again in Tibet at Cho-ten Nyi-ma, and it was from there that she made her dash to Shi-ga-tze, visiting the Panchen Lama and his mother. With the letters, it is easy to follow her route. In addition, she mentions many more names in her letters than in her books, for example, the Laden-las and the help they gave her.

One of the most remarkable events, and the key to her later adventures, dates back to April 1912, when she was able, thanks to her reputation as a Buddhist, to have an unprecedented interview with the Dalai Lama, who was then in temporary exile. Through the letters to her husband, we discover that she wrote under many pseudonyms, even, in at least one case, with a Hindu name. One of her pen names was Alexandra Myrial, and in the Bulletin de la Societe d'Anthropologie Populaire of 1901, there is one of her articles, "Les Mantras aux Indes" referred to in the Buddhist Bibliography of Shinsho Hanayama. There too, are other references to her publications under the name Alexandra David, beginning in 1907. By the time she arrived in India, she had already established herself internationally as a Buddhist and something of an authority. The Dalai Lama wanted to know who had been her guru, and was at first astonished to learn that she had none. When she explained that when she had determined to hold to the principles of Buddhism, she did not know another Buddhist, and was perhaps then the only one in Paris, the Dalai Lama laughed and said indeed that was a good reason. He told her to learn Tibetan. In her letters, we can follow her progress, slow initially, then faster and better; her Calligraphy in both styles of writing becomes almost elegant, and three years after her interview, by July, 1976, she was writing and speaking with ease. In 1916, she was so fluent in Tibetan that she could engage in philosophic discussions with an erudite lama, and it was shortly after this that she visited the Panchen Lama. Later at Ku-bum, she again had a language problem, but with her command of Tibetan, which all high-ranking prelates had to know, and her established acquaintance with the Dalai and Panchen Lamas, she managed well.

After leaving Tibet and Sikkim, late in 1916 she went to Japan and found herself homesick for Tibet. In a letter to her husband, she interjects the English expression, "too tame". She was distressed to be surrounded by cultivated fields and thought that there was nothing uglier. She compared it to living in a kitchen, for which, though recognising its value, she seemed to have had some antipathy. Although she appeared to have had a pleasant time with Ekai Kawaguchi, who had preceded her to Tibet, she commented that the Japanese are the Germans of the Far East, permeated with the same spirit that had composed Deutschland Uber Alles.

After only a few months in Japan, she returned to China. Her plans to go to Tibet were uppermost in her mind by the end of October 1917. Aphur Yongden suggested how they might do it together economically, with him earning their keep by teaching and other activities. The fact is that six years later when they finally made their trip to Lhasa, they did support themselves largely on his earnings as a red hat fortune teller, since they did not dare to show that they were reasonably well supplied with silver and gold. They made that trip safely only by dint of looking too poor to rob. It was only in the Po-yul (sPo-yul) country where even such people, poor as they appeared, were seriously threatened with robbery. Even then, her major concern was that the thieves might discover their Western items, such as spoons, compasses and revolvers, which would unmask them. It is as the thieves were trying not only to take Rs. 2. from Yongden, but also to look into his pack, that Alexandra David-Neel felt forced to frighten them off with her revolver ... which she did most effectively but with no intent to kill. It should be noted that she discovered for herself the Lange-James theory, that emotions follow actions. For example, after she decided quite coolly that to protect herself from being exploited by her coolie servants, she must make a show of force, she noted that she only became angry when she was obliged to administer punishment. Also, after posing for a period as a beggar, it amused her to note that she was acquiring a beggar mentality with regard to potential donors on whom she pretended to depend upon.

She made many striking observations. During her stay in China, she was struck by the harmful influence of Confucianism, but in Tibet notes that the country lost materially, more than it gained by its rupture with China. She commented that there were no Buddhist Saints, only those who had been awakened. She noted one European was scandalised by the story of the Buddha, an unworthy man who deserted his wife and child. She was not averse to black humour: hearing that a man characterised as dying for his ideas is accused of dying for the ideas of others, she noted that certain ideas corresponded to the fibre of our being and made it vibrate in resonance. Ideas like these were truly ours, no matter what the source.

The revelation of her theatrical career helped clear up some doubts in her stories, how she had been able to disguise herself and act so well. In her books she tells of using dye on her hair and hands, cocoa and charcoal on her face. The picture in Lhasa shows it well. But the books never told us that she had been a singer and had toured for many years. In her books, she does remark on her playing a part, copying the typical actions, pretending to scratch lice, learning how to lick out her bowl. She tells of Yongden's distress when she planned to take a bath in a hot spring for fear she would wash her face. When she was ordered to take off her hat in a sacred area in Lhasa, she was afraid that her hair would give her away, but people merely thought she was from Ladakh.

Her most difficult problem in leaving for Tibet on her successful trip to Lhasa was that she had, for convention's sake, to start out with coolies. She had to prepare for what looked like just a short trip to collect plants. For a Western woman in that period to have gone without servants, or wearing a back-pack would have caused too much talk. But the coolies could not be taken into her confidence, and so she had to send them off with plausible tasks to perform, in opposite directions, letting them think that the other would still be with her and that she would return soon.

Now that the house, Sam-ten Dzong, has been opened to the public and the accumulation of Alexandra David-Neel's 100 years of exciting living can be studied more intimately, it seems certain that there will be a revival of interest in her career. The psychological details of her life are as fully interesting as her adventures in Tibet, and the two are remarkably intertwined. Some day we must work on answering the question: "What got her started?" It should be fascinating to find the answers.
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Re: Freda Bedi, by Wikipedia

Postby admin » Wed Jan 22, 2020 7:31 pm

Forbidden travels of an opera singer: The Secret Lives of Alexandra David-Neel by Barbara Foster and Michael Foster Overlook Press pounds 20
by Isabel Hilton
Sunday 11 July 1999 00:02



You couldn't wish for a life more packed with adventure than that of Alexandra David-Neel: born in France in 1868, brought up (unhappily) in Belgium, she was a restless spirit who took an unusual and early interest in Eastern religions. After a brief career as an opera singer, she became a journalist and married a distant cousin before setting off on a series of ever-longer journeys. These culminated in a 14-year absence, during which time she fell in love with the Maharaja of Sikkim, meditated in a series of caves across Central Asia, studied with various spiritual masters, and trekked, disguised as a mendicant pilgrim, to Lhasa.

Exasperating and extraordinary, she was acknowledged in her day as one of the foremost interpreters of the Eastern spiritual tradition to the Western public. She was the author of some 30 books and numerous articles. She served as inspiration to the seekers after soft-focus truth of the Beat Generation in the 1950s and supported the student rebellion in Paris in the 1960s. She finally died a few days before her 101st birthday, having endured the celebrations of her own centenary with characteristic ill- grace. Her adventures were so improbable that one French writer devoted years to the attempt to prove that Alexandra David-Neel made it all up. A biographer -- or in this case, a pair of biographers -- could hardly ask for more. But then, consider the problems. Everything Alexandra David-Neel wished to have known about her life and thoughts, she wrote herself. She destroyed personal papers, letters and other evidence if it did not accord with the image she wished to project. That which she wished to deny about her past, she either concealed or lied about. Getting at the truth about Alexandra David-Neel requires more than simple enthusiasm.

This is the authors' second attempt at their subject: they published the first biography (Forbidden Journey) in 1987. They are diligent researchers, but their point of departure - the moment at which the name of Alexandra David-Neel first exercised its magic upon them - was, we are told, at an ashram in southern India, in the course of a discussion of a shamanistic practice of raising the dead.

The problem for any reader who is disinclined to take the raising of the dead at face value is how to interpret the life of a woman who reported flying yogis and telepathy as rather mundane bits of magic commonly encountered in Tibet. It is a difficulty that can only be compounded by the fact that her biographers are inclined to indulge her on such subjects as the psychic generation of living forms, a party trick that Alexandra claimed to have performed on one of her many pilgrimages. If we are trying to make sense of a woman whose achievements were, indeed, extraordinary, but who lied shamelessly when it suited her purpose - and who certainly had a strong sense of how much a credulous market would bear when it came to the mysteries of the Orient - we need a little more help than we are offered.

The authors do bring a number of contradictions to our attention, offering tantalising glimpses of the discussion they could have had with their subject, if only they had been slightly stricter with her and with themselves. David-Neel's relationship with her long-suffering husband, Philippe, is a case in point. She met him when she was 32 and her singing career was beginning to falter. He was seven years older and a bachelor engineer who was living - apparently contentedly - in Tunis. There seems to have been little passion on either side, but of the two Alexandra was the more determined, and they married. She undoubtedly had the best of the bargain: she had already begun to make a name as an orientalist and, from then on, her extraordinary career would be financed by her husband. As Alexandra travelled, Philippe wrote letters, sent her money and advice and acted as her literary agent. She, meanwhile, made demands, had adventures and formed close emotional attachments to other men. He tried many times to persuade her to come home; she repeatedly promised - and repeatedly broke her promises, despite civil war in China and the determination of the British to thwart her ambition to become the first European woman to reach Lhasa.

She made it to the holy city in the end, trekking in disguise through the appalling Tibetan winter, her sketch maps and notes concealed in her boots. Only after this journey - which had lasted 14 years in total - did Philippe baulk at her proposition that she return to the matrimonial home in the company of her "adopted son" - a Tibetan novice monk who had been her constant companion during her wanderings. The man, who is rather ungenerously described here as a conventional bourgeois figure, had had enough, but he continued to pay the bills. No wonder Alexandra wrote, when Philippe died in 1941, that she had lost "the best of husbands and my only friend".

Equally patient and long-suffering in his way was the monk, Yongden, who served her untiringly and without pay for more than two decades. He was to die in France at the age of 55, a hopeless alcoholic, according to his doctor. Alexandra David-Neel was not an easy woman for any of her companions. She had wandered across the most extraordinary political and spiritual landscape: she had skirted the Great Game, she met both the 13th Dalai Lama and the 9th Panchen Lama, the leading Tibetan hierarchs of her day, she had sat at the unwashed feet of many a lesser spiritual master. She grumbled about her rheumatism and carried a tin bath to the most improbable places, insisting that it be filled daily with hot water.

She wrote copiously about her adventures, but her contribution to geographical knowledge, as one critic pointed out, was nil: there are no maps in her accounts, and almost no dates. It is a deficiency that her biographers might have gone further to correct. Equally frustratingly, this text is full of small historical errors (the 9th Panchen Lama, for instance, died in Jyekundo, not Beijing), the Chinese place names are rendered in a romanisation that has not been current in mainland China for 40 years and which, by now, must be unfamiliar to most readers, and numerous irritating eccentricities of spelling (Paris the "capitol" of France, "diety" for deity) are repeated throughout the book. But despite these flaws, hers was a life so extraordinary that fans of David-Neel may find enough here to hold their attention until the definitive biography comes along.
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Re: Freda Bedi, by Wikipedia

Postby admin » Wed Jan 22, 2020 8:14 pm

Aphur Yongden
by Wikipedia (France)
Accessed: 1/22/20



Aphur Yongden
Yongden in 1933.
Birth: December 25, 1899, Mando, Sikkim (India)
Death: October 7, 1955 (at 55), Digne (France)
Nationality: Indian
School / tradition: Tibetan Buddhism
masters Lachen Gomchen Rinpoche

Aphur Yongden also called Albert Arthur Yongden and Lama Yongden or his Tibetan dharmic name: སྙིང རྗེ་ རྒྱ་ མཚོ, Wylie: snying-rje rgya mtsho, THL: Nyingje Gyatso (December 25, 1899 in Sikkim [1], - October 7, 1955 in Digne-les-Bains) was a lama of Sikkim, of Tibetan parents. He was recognized as a tulku [2].


Yongden (left) and Alexandra David-Neel (center) in front of de Potala in 1924.

He accompanied Alexandra David-Néel since 1914, and in 1929 she made him his adopted son [3].

They retreat to the cave of a hermitage at 3,900 meters above sea level, north of Sikkim, near the Lachen Gomchen Rinpoche near Lachen. The city is close to the Indo-Tibetan border, and both will cross it twice, going to Chigatsé where they are received between 17 and July 26, 1916 by the 9 th Panchen Lama at the Tashilhunpo Monastery, of which Alexandra described [4]. In 1916, Yongden and Alexandra were expelled from Sikkim by the British for having gone to Tibet without having asked for authorization. [5]

They stay two months in Lhasa, the capital of Tibet, with Alexandra, during which they visited the holy city and the surrounding great monasteries: Drepung, Séra, Ganden, Samye ... But Alexandra David-Néel, disguised as a beggar, is finally unmasked (because of too great a cleanliness: she would wash herself every morning at the river), and denounced to the Tsarong Shape (governor of Lhasa ) who decides to leave them alone and continue their quest. Yongden was the key that enabled Alexandra to achieve all that she did, it was also a little bit of Tibet that allowed the old lady not to feel too lonely in the West. He was certainly the most important person for her.

In 1925, he arrived in France with Alexandra David-Néel who settled in Toulon before joining in 1928 Digne-les-Bains where she acquired a house. Aphur Yongden legally becomes his adopted son and accompanies him on his conference tours in France and Europe. Between 1937 and 1946, they returned to Asia. He accompanies Alexandra David-Néel when she definitively leaves Asia by plane from Calcutta in June 1946. On July 1, they arrived in Paris, where they stayed until October when they joined Digne-les-Bains [6], where Yongden died on October 7, 1955 to Samten Dzong of an attack of lightning uremia [7].

Equally patient and long-suffering in his way was the monk, Yongden, who served her untiringly and without pay for more than two decades. He was to die in France at the age of 55, a hopeless alcoholic, according to his doctor.

-- Forbidden travels of an opera singer: The Secret Lives of Alexandra David-Neel by Barbara Foster and Michael Foster Overlook Press pounds 20, by Isabel Hilton

His ashes were transported to Vârânasî in 1973 by Marie-Madeleine Peyronnet to be dispersed with those of Alexandra David-Néel in the Ganges.

Aphur Yongden is the author of several works.

A literary prize was named after the illustrious explorer of Tibet and her adopted son, the Alexandra-David-Néel / Lama-Yongden Prize.


• Gods and demons of Tibetan solitudes, Alexandra David-Néel, Lama A Yongden
• Transcendent knowledge from the Tibetan text and commentaries, 1958, Alexandra David-Néel, Lama Yongden, Adyar; (ISBN 2850000167)
• The superhuman life of Guésar de Ling, the Tibetan hero, told by the bards of his country of Gesar, 1931, Alexandra David-Néel and Lama Yongden, preface by Sylvain Levi, Editions du Rocher, (ISBN 2268000303)


• 1935: The Lama with the five wisdoms Alexandra David-Néel, Lama Yongden, Plon, ASIN B0000DPLK9
• 1954: The Power of Nothingness, novel by Lama Yongden, translated and annotated by Alexandra David-Néel (Plon)


1. Joëlle Désiré-Marchand Alexandra David-Néel: From Paris to Lhasa, from adventure to wisdom (1998) Artuad editions, (ISBN 2700311434)
2. Ruth Middleton, Alexandra David-Néel: portrait of an adventurer, Shambhala, 1989, (ISBN 0877734135 and 9780877734130 ) p. 147 "One day a tall, well-dressed lama with gray hair entered her room, without so much as knocking, and insisted on talking with her. Always nervous about giving away her identity, Alexandra did not welcome this intrusion, but she tried to make light of it, so as not to arouse suspicion. This unexpected visitor had an unusual presence, difficult to ignore. He questioned her at length about herself and Yongden, their country of origin, where they had lived, and their motives for adopting the religious life. He then intensified his discourse with a moving commentary on the sad condition of this present world, in which men were completely obsessed with the demands of their own egos, and the tremendous need for committed teachers to expound the doctrine. Referring suddenly to Yongden, he observed that he was a tulku. Alexandra asked him how he had known this. He replied, "One can sense it even if he is not officially recognized. He will have an unusual life." He offered to share with Yongden the teachings he had received from his own master, and invited him to visit him in his quarters in the nearby monastery. For the remainder of their stay Yongden visited him every day. His importance as a man of letters was evident, and great respect was shown him by the other monks. As she pored over her texts, Alexandra mused that Yongden's "unusual life" had indeed already begun. The strange lama's penetrating mind had apparently seen through their disguise. "
3. François Pouillon, Dictionary of French-speaking orientalists, KARTHALA Editions, 2008, (ISBN 2845868022), p. 262
4. Fabienne Jagou, The 9th Panchen Lama (1883-1937): issue of Sino-Tibetan relations, Paris: EFEO, 2004 (Monographs: 191). “As for Alexandra David-Neel, who lived in Tashilunpo from July 17 to 26, 1916, here is what she says. "
5. Biography 5
6. Jean Chalon, The Luminous Destiny of Alexandra David-Néel, p. 418-419.
7. Jacques Brosse, Alexandra David-Neel, p. 232

Related articles

Alexandra David-Néel Foundation, association for the sponsorship of Tibetan children in exile founded in 1977 and based in Digne-les-Bains.

External links

• Authority records:
• Virtual international authority file
• International Standard Name Identifier
• National Library of France (data)
• University documentation system
• Library of Congress
• Gemeinsame Normdatei
• Royal Netherlands Library
• Czech National Library
• WorldCat
• Lama Aphur Yongden 1899-1955,
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Re: Freda Bedi, by Wikipedia

Postby admin » Wed Jan 22, 2020 10:25 pm

Lobsang Rampa [Cyril Henry Hoskin]
by Wikipedia
Accessed: 1/22/20



Lobsang Rampa
Lobsang Rampa, born as Cyril Hoskin (1910–1981)
Born: Cyril Henry Hoskin, 8 April 1910, Plympton, Devon, United Kingdom
Died: 25 January 1981 (aged 70), Calgary, Alberta, Canada
Nationality: British
Other names: Tuesday Lobsang Rampa, Carl Kuon Suo
Citizenship: British; Canadian
Occupation: Author
Years active 1956–1980
Known for The Third Eye
Spouse(s) San Ra'ab Rampa
Children Sheelagh Rouse (adopted)

Lobsang Rampa is the pen name of an author who wrote books with paranormal and occult themes. His best known work is The Third Eye, published in Britain in 1956.

Following the publication of the book, newspapers reported that Rampa was Cyril Henry Hoskin (8 April 1910 – 25 January 1981), a plumber from Plympton in Devon who claimed that his body hosted the spirit of a Tibetan lama going by the name of Tuesday Lobsang Rampa, who is purported to have authored the books. The name Tuesday relates to a claim in The Third Eye that Tibetans are named after the day of the week on which they were born.

The Third Eye

In November 1956 a book called The Third Eye was published in the United Kingdom. It was written by a man named Tuesday Lobsang Rampa, and it purported to relate his experiences while growing up in Chakpori Lamasery,[1] Chokpori, Tibet, after being sent there at the age of seven. The title of the book is derived from an operation, similar to trepanation, that Rampa claimed he had undergone, in which a small hole was drilled into his forehead to arouse the third eye and enhance powers of clairvoyance. The book describes the operation as follows:

The instrument penetrated the bone. A very hard, clean sliver of wood had been treated by fire and herbs and was slid down so that it just entered the hole in my head. I felt a stinging, tickling sensation apparently in the bridge of my nose. It subsided and I became aware of subtle scents which I could not identify. Suddenly there was a blinding flash. For a moment the pain was intense. It diminished, died and was replaced by spirals of colour. As the projecting sliver was being bound into place so that it could not move, the Lama Mingyar Dondup turned to me and said: "You are now one of us, Lobsang. For the rest of your life you will see people as they are and not as they pretend to be."

During the story, Rampa sees yetis and eventually encounters a mummified body of himself from an earlier incarnation. He also takes part in an initiation ceremony in which he learns that during its early history the Earth was struck by another planet, causing Tibet to become the mountain kingdom that it is today.

The manuscript of The Third Eye had been turned down by several leading British publishers before being accepted by Secker and Warburg for an advance of £800 (£20,000 today). Fredric Warburg of Secker and Warburg had met the book's author, who at the time appeared in the guise of "Doctor Carl Kuon Suo". Intrigued by the writer's personality, Warburg sent the manuscript to a number of scholars, several of whom expressed doubts about its authenticity. Nevertheless, the book was published in November 1956 and soon became a global bestseller. The Times Literary Supplement said of the book: "It came near to being a work of art."[2]

Controversy over authorship

Original 1950s cover of The Third Eye

Explorer and Tibetologist Heinrich Harrer was unconvinced about the book's origins and hired a private detective from Liverpool named Clifford Burgess to investigate Rampa. "In January 1957, Scotland Yard asked him to present a Tibetan passport or a residence permit. Rampa moved to Ireland. One year later, the scholars retained the services of Clifford Burgess, a leading Liverpool private detective. Burgess’s report, when it came in, was terse. Lama Lobsang Rampa of Tibet, he determined after one month of inquiries, was none other than Cyril Henry Hoskin, a native of Plympton, Devonshire, the son of the village plumber and a high school dropout."[3] The findings of Burgess' investigation were published in the Daily Mail in February 1958.[4] It was reported that the author of the book was a man named Cyril Henry Hoskin, who had been born in Plympton, Devon, in 1910 and was the son of a plumber. Hoskin had never been to Tibet and spoke no Tibetan. In 1948, he had legally changed his name to Carl Kuon Suo before adopting the name Lobsang Rampa.[5] An obituary of Fra Andrew Bertie, Grand Master of the Sovereign Military Order of Malta, claims that he was involved in unmasking Lobsang Rampa as a West Country plumber.[6]


Rampa was tracked by the British press to Howth, Ireland, and confronted with these allegations. He did not deny that he had been born as Cyril Hoskin, but claimed that his body was now occupied by the spirit of Lobsang Rampa.[7] According to the account given in his third book, The Rampa Story, he had fallen out of a fir tree in his garden in Thames Ditton, Surrey, while attempting to photograph an owl. He was concussed and, on regaining his senses, had seen a Buddhist monk in saffron robes walking towards him. The monk spoke to him about Rampa taking over his body and Hoskin agreed, saying that he was dissatisfied with his current life. When Rampa's original body became too worn out to continue, he took over Hoskin's body in a process of transmigration of the soul.[8]

Rampa maintained for the rest of his life that The Third Eye was a true story. In the foreword to the 1964 edition of the book, he wrote:

I am Tuesday Lobsang Rampa, that is my only name, now my legal name, and I answer to no other.

To Donald S. Lopez, Jr., an American Tibetologist, the books of Lobsang Rampa are "the works of an unemployed surgical fitter, the son of a plumber, seeking to support himself as a ghostwriter."[9]

The authorship controversy was dramatised in a radio play, The Third Eye and the Private Eye, by David Lemon and Mark Ecclestone, first broadcast by BBC Radio 4 in August 2012.[10]

Influence on Tibetologists’ callings

Donald S. Lopez, Jr., in Prisoners of Shangri-La (1998), points out that when discussing Rampa with other tibetologists and buddhologists in Europe, he found that The Third Eye was the first book many of them had read about Tibet: "For some it was a fascination with the world Rampa described that had led them to become professional scholars of Tibet."

Lopez adds that when he gave The Third Eye to a class of his at the University of Michigan without telling them about its history, the "students were unanimous in their praise of the book, and despite six prior weeks of lectures and readings on Tibetan history and religion, [...] they found it entirely credible and compelling, judging it more realistic than anything they had previously read about Tibet."[11]

Role in the Tibetan cause

Lobsang Rampa was a supporter of the Tibetan cause despite criticism of his books. In 1972, Rampa's French language agent Alain Stanké wrote to the Dalai Lama and asked for his opinion about Rampa's identity. He received a reply from the Dalai Lama's deputy secretary stating "I wish to inform you that we do not place credence in the books written by the so-called Dr. T. Lobsang Rampa. His works are highly imaginative and fictional in nature." The Dalai Lama had previously admitted that although the books were fictitious, they had created good publicity for Tibet.[12]

Later career


Lobsang Rampa went on to write another 18 books containing a mixture of religious and occult material. One of the books, Living with the Lama, was described as being dictated to Rampa by his pet Siamese cat, Mrs. Fifi Greywhiskers. Faced with repeated accusations from the British press that he was a charlatan and a con artist, Rampa went to live in Canada in the 1960s. He and his wife, San Ra'ab, became Canadian citizens in 1973, along with Sheelagh Rouse (Buttercup) who was his secretary and regarded by Rampa as his adopted daughter.


Lobsang Rampa died in Calgary on 25 January 1981, at the age of 70.


Rampa claimed that his 1964 book, Living with the Lama, was dictated to him by his cat

• The Third Eye (1956)
• My Visit to Venus (1957)[n 1]
• Doctor from Lhasa (1959)
• The Rampa Story (1960)
• Cave of the Ancients (1963)
• Living with the Lama (1964)
• You Forever (1965)
• Wisdom of the Ancients (1965)
• The Saffron Robe (1966)
• Chapters of Life (1967)
• Beyond The Tenth (1969)
• Feeding the Flame (1971)
• The Hermit (1971)
• The Thirteenth Candle (1972)
• Candlelight (1973)
• Twilight (1975)
• As It Was! (1976)
• I Believe (1976)
• Three Lives (1977)
• Tibetan Sage (1980)

See also

• Grey Owl
• Mediumship
• Third eye
• Trepanation


1. My Visit to Venus is based on work which Rampa did not approve for publication and was published some years after it was written. It describes how Rampa meets the masters of several planets during a trip in a spaceship. The original manuscript was written by Rampa, but this book was not. It was created by Gray Barker and published by Saucerian Books in 1966 who used Rampa's name and manuscript without his permission. Rampa finally gave his permission for the book to be published provided two alterations were made and ten per cent of the profits were sent to the Save A Cat League in New York City (letter to Gray Barker, dated 31 October 1966)[13]


1. Rampa, Lobsang (1956). "Chapter 4: At The Temple Gates". The Third Eye. Secker & Warburg. ISBN 9780345340382.
2. "T. Lobsang Rampa". The Times (obituary). 31 January 1981. Retrieved 23 December 2013.
3. Jr., Donald S. Lopez (1 December 1998). "Lobsang Rampa: The Mystery of the Three-Eyed Lama". Tricycle: The Buddhist Review. Archived from the original on 12 April 2016. Retrieved 28 January2018. In January 1957, Scotland Yard asked him to present a Tibetan passport or a residence permit. Rampa moved to Ireland. One year later, the scholars retained the services of Clifford Burgess, a leading Liverpool private detective. Burgess’s report, when it came in, was terse. Lama Lobsang Rampa of Tibet, he determined after one month of inquiries, was none other than Cyril Henry Hoskin, a native of Plympton, Devonshire, the son of the village plumber and a high school dropout.
4. Donald S. Lopez, Prisoners of Shangri-La: Tibetan Buddhism and the West, University of Chicago Press, 1999, 294 pages, p.99-100: "Pallis, acting on behalf of a group of European experts on Tibet, retained the services of Clifford Burgess, a leading Liverpool private detective, in an effort to discover the true identity of T. Lobsabng Rampa. By the end of the month and three thousand miles of travel, Burgess had produced the following report: CYRIL HENRY HOSKIN - BIOGRAPHICAL DETAILS [...] the February 3 Daily Express ran the headline 'The FULL truth about the Bogus Lama.'"
5. Donald S. Lopez, Prisoners of Shangri-La: Tibetan Buddhism and the West], op. cit., p.101.
6. "Fra Andrew Bertie". The Times (obituary). 23 February 2008.
7. Agehananda Bharati (aka Leopold Fischer), Fictitious Tibet: the Origin and Persistence of Rampaism, in Tibet Society Bulletin, Vol. 7, 1974: "Hoskin had a ready explanation for his predicament: yes, he had indeed been born Cyril Henry Hoskin. That good gentleman’s soul, however, had long since fled its corporeal form, so that the soul of a Tibetan lama, namely Tuesday Lobsang Rampa, could move in."
8. Chapter 8, The Rampa Story. Rampa says that this incident occurred at a house called Rose Croft in Thames Ditton.
9. Lopez, Donald S., Jr. (1998). Prisoners of Shangri-La: Tibetan Buddhism and the West. University of Chicago Press. p. 112.
10. The Third Eye and the Private Eye BBC Radio 4. Retrieved 29 April 2015.
11. Lopez 1998, pp. 104, 112.
12. Mutton, Karen (2006). T. Lobsang Rampa: New Age Trailblazer. TGS Publishing. pp. 166–7. ISBN 9780971316607.
13. Rampa, Tuesday Lobsang. Feeding the Flame. Corgi Books. p. 140. ISBN 9780552086110.

Further reading

• Lobsang Rampa — New Age Trailblazer by Karen Mutton, [[:ru:Служебная:Источники книг/0971316600|ISBN 0-9713166-0-0]]
• Newnham, Richard (1991). The Guinness Book of Fakes, Frauds and Forgeries. ISBN 0-85112-975-7
• Prisoners of Shangri-La: Tibetan Buddhism and the West by Donald S. Lopez Jr., [[:ru:Служебная:Источники книг/0226493113|ISBN 0-226-49311-3]]
• Вавренюк Р. С. Т. Лобсанг Рампа как источник исторической и философской мысли // На шляху до науки XXI сторіччя: Збірник наукових праць і матеріалів другої Міжнародної науково-практичної конференції (4–5 листопада 2011 р.) / Гол. ред. В. С. Рижиков. Кіровоград: Науково-дослідний центр інноваційних технологій, 2011. 339 с. С. 212–223.
• Вавренюк Р. С. Т. Лобсанг Рампа о Византийском соборе (общий анализ) // Науковий вісник інноваційних технологій за матеріалами Міжнародної науково-практичної конференції «Інноваційні наукові технології: передовий світовий досвід» (5 листопада 2012 р.) / Гол. ред. В. С. Рижиков. Т. І–ІІ. Т. І. Кіровоград: Науково-дослідний центр інноваційних технологій, 2012. 344 с. С. 278–288.
• Вавренюк Р. С. Лобсанг Рампа о Византийском соборе (тематический анализ) // Наукові пошуки: актуальні проблеми теорії та практики: Збірник наукових праць і матеріалів Міжнародної науково-практичної конференції (20 травня 2015 року) / Гол. ред. Р. М. Колісніченко. Кіровоград: Кіровоградський інститут ПрАТ «ВНЗ МАУП», 2015. 250 с. С. 49–60.

All the books by his wife, San Ra'ab Rampa

• Pussywillow (1976 English)
• Tigerlily (1978 English)
• Le monde de Rampa (1979 French)
• Autumn Lady (1980 English)
• Ma vie avec Rampa (1980 French)
• Dans L'intimité de Rampa (1981 French)
• Wild Briar (1982 English)
• Lumière et sagesse (1982 French)
• Flor Silvestre (1984 Portuguese)
• Flor Silvestre (1984 Brazil)
• Le Testament de Lobsang Rampa (French,1984)
• Flor Silvestre is listed twice because this book was originally published in 1982 titled Wild Brair and Lumière et sagesse, later in 1984 it was translated into both Portuguese and Brazil. Whilst they are all the same book it was four different languages.

Books by Sheelagh Rouse (alias Buttercup)

• 25 years with T. Lobsang Rampa (2005) ISBN 9781411674325
• Grace, The World of Rampa (2007)

External links

Excerpts from Rampa's writings, advocacy of his views

• Tuesday Lobsang Rampa Multilingual website in 36 languages, including a very comprehensive book lists for Dr Rampa, Sheelagh, and Ra'ab.
• T. Lobsang Rampa – extracts from his writings
• – website maintained by followers of Rampa, containing links to a mailgroup and other Rampa-themed websites


• Carroll, Robert Todd. "T. Lobsang Rampa". The Skeptic's Dictionary (online ed.).
• Randi, James (2006) [1995]. "Rampa, Tuesday Lobsang Rampa". An Encyclopedia of Claims, Frauds, and Hoaxes of the Occult and Supernatural (online ed.).
• Bharati, Agehananda (1974). "Fictitious Tibet: The origin and persistence of Rampaism". Tibet Society Bulletin. 7. Archived 2 February 2009 at the Wayback Machine.
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Re: Freda Bedi, by Wikipedia

Postby admin » Fri Jan 24, 2020 3:47 am

Norbu Dhondup [Rai Bahadur]
by Wikipedia
Accessed: 1/23/20

Norbu Dhondup
Birth: 1884, Kalimpong
Death: 1944
activities: Politician, diplomat

Rai Bahadur Norbu Dhondup, ( Tibetan : ནོར་བུ་ དོན་ འགྲུབ , Wylie : nor bu don 'grub ) (also called Norbhu Dondup, Norbu Döndrub or Norbu Thondup born in 1884, died in 1944) is a Tibetan interpreter and diplomat then British agent. He was one of the interpreters of the British expedition led by Francis Younghusband in 1903-1904. In 1937 and 1939 he was acting director of the British mission in Lhasa.


Rai Bahadur Norbu Sherpa Döndrub was born in 1884 to a Tibetan family in Kalimpong in North India, then in the British Empire. He studied at Darjeeling High School in Darjeeling 1. He was interpreter of the British military expedition to Tibet in 1903. He was then secretary to the political officer of Sikkim, Bhutan and Tibet, based in Gangtok.

After the death of the 13th Dalai Lama, following the sending of a mission of condolence by China in Lhasa in 1934, the British government of India sent Norbu Döndrub in Lhasa that year 2.

In 1936 he became a British commercial agent in Yatung. In 1937 and again in 1939, he was appointed head of the British mission at Lhasa 3 , and remained there until his retirement in 1942.

He was honored by the Order of the British Empire, an order of British merit. In 1937 the regent Réting Rinpoche awarded him a gold medal for the services he rendered to communication between Tibet and British India 4.


Norbu Dhondup is appointed Commander of the Order of the British Empire (OBE CBE) 5.

Notes and references

1. ( McKay 1997, p. 226) read page 226 online
2. ( Barraux 1993 , p. 307)
3. ( McKay 1997, p. 126-128 and 230)
4. Wolfgang Bertsch, Medals from Tibet. Numismatic Digest. Indian Institute of Research in Numismatic Studies Publications, vol. 27-28, Anjaneri, 2003-2004, S. 187-196.
5. ( McKay 1997, p. 226) read page 226 online


• (in) Alex McKay, Tibet and the British Raj. The Frontier Cadre 1904-1947, London, Curzon Press,1997 (ISBN 9780700706273, OCLC 470609350)
• Roland Barraux (pref. Dagpo Rinpoche ), History of the Dalai Lamas - Fourteen reflections on the Lake of Visions , Albin Michel, coll. “Living spiritualities. Buddhism Series",1993, 396 p. ( ISBN 2-226-06514-8 , ISSN 0755-1746 , record BNF no FRBNF35593050 )(reissued in 2002, Albin Michel ( ISBN 2226133178 ) (Form BNF no FRBNF38831615 )
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