Order of the Star in the East
|Predecessor||Order of the Rising Sun|
|Successor||Order of the Star|
|Purpose||To educate and prepare the world for the advent of the World Teacher|
|Headquarters||Benares (Varanasi), India|
|C. W. Leadbeater|
|The Herald of the Star|
|Subsidiaries||Star Publishing Trust|
|Affiliations||National Sections in as many as 40 countries and territories|
The Order of the Star in the East (OSE) was an international organization based at Benares (Varanasi), India, from 1911 to 1927. It was established by the leadership of the Theosophical Society at Adyar, Chennai, in order to prepare the world for the arrival of a messianic entity, the so-called World Teacher or Maitreya. The OSE acquired members worldwide as it expanded in many countries; a third of the membership c. 1926 was unaffiliated with the Theosophical Society. The precursor of the OSE was the Order of the Rising Sun (1910–11, also at Benares) and the successor was the Order of the Star (1927–29, based at Ommen, the Netherlands). The precursor organization was formed after leading Theosophists discovered a likely candidate for the new messiah in the then–adolescent Jiddu Krishnamurti (1895–1986), a South Indian Brahmin who was installed as Head of the Order. Almost two decades later Krishnamurti rejected the messianic role, repudiated the Order's mission, and in 1929 disbanded the OSE's successor. The founding and activities of these organizations, as well as the largely unexpected dissolution of the OSE's successor, garnered widespread media attention and public interest. They also led to crises in the Theosophical Society and to schisms in Theosophy.
- 1 Background
- 2 History
- 3 Consequences
- 4 Notes
- 5 References
- 6 External links
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One of the central tenets of late 19th-century Theosophy as promoted by the Theosophical Society was the complex doctrine of intelligent evolution of all existence. This was said to be occurring on a Cosmic scale, incorporating both physical and non-physical aspects of the known and unknown Universe, and affecting all of its constituent parts regardless of apparent size or importance. The theory was originally promulgated in the Secret Doctrine (published 1888), a book by Helena Blavatsky, one of the founders of contemporary Theosophy and the Theosophical Society.
According to this view, Humankind's evolution on Earth (and beyond) is part of the Cosmic evolution. It is reputedly overseen by a hidden Spiritual Hierarchy, the so-called Masters of the Ancient Wisdom, whose upper echelons consist of advanced spiritual beings. Blavatsky portrayed the Theosophical Society as one of the Hierarchy's many attempts (or "impulses") throughout the millennia, to guide Humanity – in concert with the intelligent evolutionary scheme – to its ultimate, immutable objective: the attainment of perfection and the conscious participation in the evolutionary process. Blavatsky stated that these attempts require an Earth-based infrastructure (such as the Theosophical Society), to pave the way for the Hierarchy's physically appearing emissaries, "the torch-bearer[s] of Truth". The mission of these reputedly regularly appearing emissaries is to practically translate, in a way and language understood by contemporary humanity, the knowledge required to propel it to a higher evolutionary stage.
Blavatsky also wrote about the possible impact of Theosophy and the Theosophical Society in her book The Key to Theosophy (published 1889):
If the present attempt, in the form of our Society, succeeds better than its predecessors have done, then it will be in existence as an organized, living and healthy body when the time comes for the effort of the XXth century. The general condition of men's minds and hearts will have been improved and purified by the spread of its teachings, and, as I have said, their prejudices and dogmatic illusions will have been, to some extent at least, removed. Not only so, but besides a large and accessible literature ready to men's hands, the next impulse will find a numerous and united body of people ready to welcome the new torch-bearer of Truth. He will find the minds of men prepared for his message, a language ready for him in which to clothe the new truths he brings, an organization awaiting his arrival, which will remove the merely mechanical, material obstacles and difficulties from his path. Think how much one, to whom such an opportunity is given, could accomplish. Measure it by comparison with what the Theosophical Society actually has achieved in the last fourteen years, without any of these advantages and surrounded by hosts of hindrances which would not hamper the new leader. [emphasis in original]— Helena Blavatsky, The Key to Theosophy
Based on this and other Blavatsky writings, Theosophists expected the future advent of the aforementioned "next impulse"; additional information was the purview of the Society's Esoteric Section, which Blavatsky had founded and originally led.
After Blavatsky’s death in 1891, influential Theosophist Charles Webster Leadbeater expanded on her writings about the Spiritual Hierarchy and the Masters. He formulated a Christology in which he identified Christ with the Theosophical representation of the Buddhist concept of Maitreya. Leadbeater believed that Maitreya-as-Christ had in several occasions manifested on Earth, in each case using a specially prepared person as a "vehicle". The incarnated Maitreya assumed the role of World Teacher of Humankind, dispensing knowledge regarding underlying truths of Existence.
Annie Besant, another well-known and influential Theosophist (and eventual close associate of Leadbeater’s), had also developed an interest on the advent of the next emissary from the Spiritual Hierarchy. During the decades of the 1890s and 1900s, along with Leadbeater and others, she became progressively convinced that this advent would happen sooner than Blavatsky's proposed timetable. They came to believe it would involve the imminent reappearance of Maitreya as World Teacher, a monumental event in the Theosophical worldview. However, not all Theosophical Society members accepted Leadbeater's and Besant's ideas on the matter; the dissidents charged them with straying from Theosophical orthodoxy and, along with other concepts developed by the two, their elaborations on the Theosophical Maitreya were derisively labeled Neo-Theosophy by their opponents.
Besant became President of the Theosophical Society in 1907, and added considerable weight to the belief of Maitreya's imminent manifestation; this eventually became a commonly held expectation among Theosophists. Besant had started commenting on the possibly imminent arrival of the next emissary as early as 1896; by 1909 the proclaimed "coming Teacher" was a main topic of her lectures and writings.
"Discovery" of Jiddu Krishnamurti
Sometime in late April 1909 at the private beach of the Theosophical Society Headquarters in Adyar, Chennai, Leadbeater encountered Jiddu Krishnamurti, a fourteen-year-old South Indian Brahmin. At the time Krishnamurti's father, a longtime Theosophist, was employed by the Society; the family, in relatively poor condition, lived next to the compound. Leadbeater, a controversial figure whose knowledge on occult matters was highly respected by the Society's leadership, came to believe young Krishnamurti was a suitable candidate for the vehicle of the World Teacher – despite the boy's reputedly dull personality and lackluster intellect. Leadbeater soon placed Krishnamurti under his and the Society's wing, and in late 1909 Besant, as President of the Society and head of its Esoteric Section, admitted Krishnamurti into both. In March 1910 she became his legal guardian.
Following the "discovery", Leadbeater began occult examinations of Krishnamurti, to whom he had assigned the pseudonym Alcyone – the name of a star in the Pleiades star cluster, and of characters from Greek mythology. Leadbeater's belief regarding the boy's suitability was strengthened by his clairvoyance-aided investigations of Krishnamurti's reputed past and future lives. The results of these investigations were recorded and eventually published in Theosophical magazines starting April 1910, and in a book in 1913. They were widely read and discussed within the Society, as according to Leadbeater, contemporary Theosophists were involved in various "lives of Alcyone". Such reputed involvement became a matter of status and prestige among Theosophists; it also contributed to factionalism within the Society. In the meantime, Krishnamurti was put on a comprehensive multiyear regiment of physical, intellectual, social, and spiritual training in preparation for his probable future role.
Order of the Rising Sun
In late 1910 the Theosophical Society published the first work "by Alcyone", a booklet entitled At the Feet of the Master. The book proved very popular among Theosophists and around the same time (officially, in January 1911), the Order of the Rising Sun was founded at Benares (Varanasi) by prominent Theosophist George Arundale, Principal of the Central Hindu College (CHC). The Order was formed around a previous CHC-based study group of disciples headed by Krishnamurti, and was generally focused on the expected World Teacher; yet the newly discovered Krishnamurti was – somewhat obliquely – at the center of its attention.
Meanwhile, the activities and proclamations of Leadbeater, Besant, and other senior Theosophists regarding Krishnamurti and the expected Teacher became entangled in prior disputes within and without the Theosophical Society, and also became subjects of new controversies. The evolving controversies, as well as objections by Hindu members of the CHC faculty, prompted Besant to officially disband the organization in May 1911; however, a replacement had already been formed.
Order of the Star in the East
In April 1911 Besant founded the Order of the Star in the East (OSE), based again at Benares, which replaced the Order of the Rising Sun. It was named after the Star of Bethlehem, signifying the proclaimed approach of the new vehicle of Christ-Maitreya. The top positions of the organization were filled: "Mrs Besant and Leadbeater were made Protectors of the new Order of which Krishna [Jiddu Krishnamurti] was the Head, Arundale Private Secretary to the Head, and Wodehouse Organizing Secretary". News regarding Krishnamurti, the Order, and its mission received widespread publicity and worldwide press coverage; the publicity may have been at least partly driven by aspects of the era's prevailing fin de siècle mood.
Objective and principles
The goal of the OSE was to educate and prepare the world for the arrival of the World Teacher and to remove any material obstacles and difficulties from his path. By late 1913, the Order had about 15,000 members worldwide; most of them were also members of the Theosophical Society. However, membership was open to anyone, the only precondition being acceptance of the Declaration of Principles, which stated the following:
- We believe that a great Teacher will soon appear in the world, and we wish so to live now that we may be worthy to know Him when He comes.
- We shall try, therefore, to keep Him in our minds always, and to do in His name, and therefore to the best of our ability, all the work which comes to us in our daily occupations.
- As far as our ordinary duties allow, we shall endeavour to devote a portion of our time each day to some definite work which may help to prepare for His coming.
- We shall seek to make Devotion, Steadfastness and Gentleness prominent characteristics of our daily life.
- We shall try to begin and end each day with a short period devoted to the asking of His blessing upon all that we try to do for Him and in His name.
- We regard it as our special duty to try to recognise and reverence greatness in whomsoever shown, and to strive to co-operate, as far as we can, with those whom we feel to be spiritually our superiors.
|The Herald of the Star|
|Jiddu Krishnamurti, editor|
|The Star Review|
|Emily Lutyens, editor|
|International Star Bulletin|
|November 1927 – July 1929, Ommen|
|D. Rajagopal & R. L. Christie, editors|
Following its establishment the OSE began its mission in earnest. Lecture tours, meetings and other activities were undertaken by prominent members of the Order. As Krishnamurti came of age, he embarked on an intensified schedule of lectures and discussions in several countries, and acquired a large following among the membership of the Theosophical Society. National Sections of the Order were eventually formed in as many as forty countries.
On 28 December 1911, during a ceremony officiated by Krishnamurti at the close of the annual Theosophical Convention (held that year at Benares), those present were reported to be suddenly overwhelmed by a strange feeling of "tremendous power", which seemed to be flowing through Krishnamurti. In Leadbeater's description, "it reminded one irresistibly of the rushing, mighty wind, and the outpouring of the Holy Ghost at Pentecost. The tension was enormous, and every one in the room was most powerfully affected." The next day, at a meeting of the Esoteric Section, Besant for the first time announced that it was now obvious Krishnamurti was indeed the chosen vehicle. Thereafter, 28 December became a "sacred day" for the Order.
In 1912, Krishnamurti's father sued Besant in order to annul her guardianship of his son, which he had previously granted. Among the reasons stated in his deposition was the objection to the "deification" of Krishnamurti, said to be caused by Besant's "announcement that he was to be the Lord Christ, with the result that a number of respectable persons had prostrated before him." Besant eventually won the case on appeal.
Also in 1912, most members of the Theosophical Society's German Section followed its head, Rudolf Steiner, in splitting from the parent Society – partly due to disagreement over Besant's and Leadbeater's proclamations concerning Krishnamurti's messianic status.
Controversy regarding the OSE and Krishnamurti again engulfed the Central Hindu College. In 1913, a number of the Order's supporters resigned their positions at the CHC following opposition by the school's administration and trustees, who considered the Order's activities unacademical.
In 1921, the first international Congress of the Order of the Star in the East was held in Paris, France, attended by 2,000 members out of then about 30,000 worldwide. At the Congress it was decided that there would be no special ceremonies or rituals associated with the Order or with the World Teacher. Also in the 1920s, regularly scheduled multiday Star Camps, supported by well-organized facilities, started to be held in the Netherlands, the United States, and India. They were attended by thousands of members, with coverage provided by local and international media.
Financing the venture and subsequent expansion did not appear to present a problem. In 1926 the OSE, which in affiliation with the Theosophical Society was by then producing a number of publications and propaganda material, organized its own publishing arm: the Star Publishing Trust, based at Eerde, Ommen, the Netherlands. Along with an official international bulletin published in Ommen, national bulletins eventually appeared in twenty-one countries, and in fourteen different languages. Also in 1926 it was reported that the Order's membership had reached about 43,000, two thirds of which were also members of the Theosophical Society.
Claims and expectations
By year-end 1925, efforts of prominent Theosophists and their affiliated factions to favorably position themselves for the expected Coming were reaching a climax. Extraordinary pronouncements of accelerated spiritual advancement were being made by various parties, privately disputed by others. Ranking members of the Order and the Society had publicly declared themselves to have been chosen as apostles of the new Messiah. The escalating claims of spiritual success, and the internal (and hidden from the public) Theosophical politics, alienated an increasingly disillusioned Krishnamurti. He refused to recognize anyone as his disciple or apostle. Additionally, World Teacher-related spinoff projects proliferated: in August 1925 the establishment of a "World Religion" and a "World University" were announced by the Theosophical leadership. Both of them were later "quietly shelved".
The annual Star Congress for 1925 opened at Adyar on the "sacred day" of 28 December, following the much anticipated but uneventful Theosophical Convention. At the opening, an event occurred that was reminiscent of the incident that had happened on the same day of 1911. Krishnamurti had been giving a speech about the World Teacher and the significance of his coming, when "a dramatic change" took place: his voice suddenly altered and he switched to first person, saying "I come for those who want sympathy, who want happiness, who are longing to be released, who are longing to find happiness in all things. I come to reform and not to tear down, I come not to destroy but to build." For many of the assembled who noticed, it was a "spine-tingling" revelation, "felt ... instantly and independently" – confirmation, in their view, that the manifestation of the Lord Maitreya through his chosen vehicle had begun.
Order of the Star
The reputed manifestation of the World Teacher prompted a number of celebratory statements and assertions by prominent Theosophists that were not unanimously accepted by Society members. One result was the persistence of controversy regarding the project. Besant and other leaders of the Society largely managed to contain the dissenters and the controversy, but in the process sustained unflattering publicity. However, the so-called World Teacher Project was also receiving serious and neutral coverage in the global media, and according to reports it was followed sympathetically and with interest by non-Theosophists.
In related developments following the perceived manifestation, Besant announced in January 1927, "[t]he World Teacher is here", while many Star members expected Krishnamurti's unequivocal public proclamation of his messianic status. Reflecting the new situation, in June 1927 the name of the organization was changed to Order of the Star. It was relocated at Ommen, with close Krishnamurti associate and friend D. Rajagopal serving as Chief Organizer. The renamed Order had two objectives:
- To draw together all those who believe in the Presence of the World Teacher in the world.
- To work with Him for the establishment of His ideas.
Complementing the reorganization and the proclamations of the World Teacher's manifestation, in 1928 the so-called World Mother Project, headed by Rukmini Devi Arundale (George Arundale's young wife), was put in motion by Theosophical leaders. Krishnamurti again distanced himself from this endeavor, which Indian and international press reports dubbed "Mrs. Besant's New Fad", and it was to be short-lived.
Dissolution and repudiation
By the late 1920s, Krishnamurti's emphasis in public talks and private discussions had changed. He had been gradually discarding or contradicting Theosophical concepts and terminology, disagreeing with leading Theosophists, and talking less about the World Teacher. The shift in emphasis mirrored fundamental changes in Krishnamurti as a person, including his increasing disenchantment with the World Teacher Project. They led Krishnamurti to a thorough reevaluation of his relationship with the Project, the Theosophical Society, and Theosophy in general. Finally, on 3 August 1929, at the Ommen Star Camp, he disbanded the Order in front of Besant and about 3,000 members. In his speech dissolving the organization (also broadcast on Dutch radio), Krishnamurti said:
I maintain that Truth is a pathless land, and you cannot approach it by any path whatsoever, by any religion, by any sect. That is my point of view, and I adhere to that absolutely and unconditionally. Truth, being limitless, unconditioned, unapproachable by any path whatsoever, cannot be organized; nor should any organization be formed to lead or to coerce people along any particular path.— Jiddu Krishnamurti, The Dissolution of the Order of the Star
Despite the changes in Krishnamurti's outlook and pronouncements during the preceding years, the dissolution of the Order and the ending of the World Teacher Project shocked many of their supporters. Prominent Theosophists openly or under various guises turned against Krishnamurti – including Leadbeater, who reputedly stated, "the Coming has gone wrong". However, other Society members supported Krishnamurti's new direction, and opposed the critical views expressed by Theosophical leaders.
Soon after the dissolution Krishnamurti severed his ties to Theosophy and the Theosophical Society. He denounced the concepts of saviors, leaders, and spiritual teachers. Vowing to work towards setting humankind "absolutely, unconditionally free", he repudiated all doctrines and theories of inner, spiritual and psychological evolution such as those implied in the Theosophical tenets described above. Instead, he posited that his goal of complete psychological freedom could be realized only through the understanding of individuals' actual relationships with themselves, society, and nature.
Krishnamurti returned to the donors the estates, property, and funds that had been given to the Order in its various incarnations. He spent the rest of his life promoting his post-Theosophical message around the world as an independent speaker and writer. He became widely known as an original, influential thinker on philosophical, psychological, and religious subjects.
In 1907, the first year for which reliable records were kept, the worldwide membership of the Theosophical Society was estimated at over 15,000. During the following two decades membership suffered due to splits and resignations, but by the mid–1920s it was rising again; it eventually peaked in 1928 at about 45,000 members. The membership of the Order in its various guises kept increasing steadily, yet Krishnamurti's changing message in the period leading to the dissolution may have negatively affected growth. Many members of the Order were also members of the Theosophical Society; consequently, as many as a third of the members of the Society left "within a few years" of Krishnamurti's disbanding of the Order. In the opinion of a Krishnamurti biographer, the Society, already in decline for other reasons, "was in disarray" upon the dissolution of the Order. While many Theosophical publications and leading members tried to minimize both the effect of Krishnamurti's actions and the defunct Order's importance, the "truth ... was that the Theosophical Society had been pole-axed. ... [Krishnamurti] had combatively challenged the central tenet of its beliefs".
The failed project led to considerable analysis and retrospective evaluations by the Society and by well-known Theosophists, at that time and since. It also resulted in governance changes in the Theosophical Society Adyar, a reorientation of its Esoteric Section, re-examination of parts of its doctrine, and reticence to outside questions regarding the OSE and the World Teacher Project. According to both theosophical and non-theosophical observers, Theosophical organizations, especially the Theosophical Society Adyar, by the close of the 20th century had yet to recover from Krishnamurti's rejection and the entire World Teacher affair, and entered the 21st still dealing with their effects.
- Goodrick-Clarke 2004, § "The Secret Doctrine" pp. 14–17, 132; Kuhn 1931, pp. 110–130. Retrieved 2015-08-13.
- Lubelsky 2012, pp. 79–81.
- Blavatsky 1889, pp. 304–307 [quoted text at pp. 306–307]. Retrieved 2015-08-06 – via Internet Archive.
- Lachman 2012, pp. 248–249; Lutyens 1975, pp. 10–11. Members of the Esoteric Section had access to occult instruction and a more detailed knowledge of the inner order and mission of the Society and of its reputed hidden Masters or Mahātmās.
- Lubelsky 2012, § "Leadbeater's Doctrine" pp. 139–146; Leadbeater 2007, pp. , , , , . Retrieved 2015-09-22 – via Google Books (limited preview).
- Lubelsky 2012, pp. 132–134.
- Blavatsky 1889, . Retrieved 2015-08-06 – via Internet Archive. "But I must tell you that during the last quarter of every hundred years an attempt is made by those 'Masters,' of whom I have spoken, to help on the spiritual progress of Humanity in a marked and definite way. Towards the close of each century you will invariably find that an outpouring or upheaval of spirituality – or call it mysticism if you prefer – has taken place. Some one or more persons have appeared in the world as their agents, and a greater or less amount of occult knowledge and teaching has been given out."
- Lubelsky 2012, pp. 136–137.
- Kuhn 1931, . Retrieved 2015-08-14.
- Vernon 2001, p. 35.
- Schüller 1999.
- Lutyens 1975, pp. 11–12, 46.
- AP 1909. News agency report of Besant's early-20th-century lecture tour of the United States.
- Lutyens 1975, pp. 1, 20–21.
- Lutyens 1975, pp. 12, 124–125; Vernon 2001, pp. 99–100. Krishnamurti was not the first, or only, candidate for Vehicleship. Before him, Hubert van Hook, the young son of a high-ranking American Theosophist was considered promising by Leadbeater. In addition, thirteen-year-old Indian Rajagopalarya Desikacharya ("D. Rajagopal", 1900–93) was "discovered" by Leadbeater in 1913, and for a time it was rumored in Theosophical circles that he might supplant Krishnamurti. However, Krishnamurti was considered the most likely vehicle candidate, for whom the Society made available its resources. Rajagopal went on to become a decades-long close associate and friend of Krishnamurti's, but their relationship soured in old age.
- Wood 1964. An eyewitness account of Krishnamurti's "discovery". Also, commentary on related events and controversies. By one of Leadbeater's close associates.
- Lutyens 1975, p. 30.
- Lutyens 1975, p. 40. Besant and Krishnamurti developed a very close, lasting personal relationship (Vernon 2001, pp. 46–47).
- Besant & Leadbeater 2003, p. 9. "To this 'himself ' or ego [i.e. each of the characters in the Lives of Alcyone] we have given a distinguishing name, so that he may be recognized under all the disguises put on to suit the part he is playing. These are mostly names of constellations, stars, or Greek heroes." Krishnamurti's pseudonym may be related to one of the mythical Pleiades or to another mythological Alcyone, a goddess whose story is related to the so-called halcyon days. In general, Theosophy assigns occult or esoteric significance to practically all ancient mythologies (Kalnitsky 2003, pp. 294–296, 300), whose theogonies are considered by Theosophical doctrine to be closely related to actual cosmological and astronomical events. The Pleiades star cluster specifically appears in many mythologies: Pleiades in folklore and literature.
- Besant & Leadbeater 1922, . Retrieved 2015-09-21 – via Google Books.
- Lutyens 1975, pp. 23–24. Leadbeater proclaimed his clairvoyance as a matter of fact; this was accepted by many Theosophists. Reincarnation is considered a fundamental doctrine in Theosophy. Besides Krishnamurti, Leadbeater assigned names with Esoteric Theosophical significance to several other actors in the "lives of Alcyone".
- Vernon 2001, "Chapter 4: At the Feet of the Master"–"Chapter 5: Moulding a Messiah" pp. 51–93 [cumulative].
- Vernon 2001, pp. 61–64. The publication of At the Feet of the Master also resulted in controversy, regarding the author's identity.
- Lutyens 1975, pp. 42–46. "George Arundale [appeared as] Fides in The Lives of Alcyone". The CHC had been co-founded by Annie Besant and counted several prominent Theosophists among its faculty and staff.
- Tillet 1986, "Chapter 15: Conflict over Krishnamurti" pp. 506–553. Information on contemporary controversies regarding Krishnamurti, inside and outside the Theosophical Society.
- Row 1911. Long letter by a senior Indian Theosophist published in Indian newspaper The Leader shortly after the formation of the Order of the Rising Sun. In it, Row disputes the Adyar-based leadership's claims about Krishnamurti and their positions on Theosophical doctrine.
- Lubelsky 2012, pp. 298–299.
- Vernon 2001, p. 64.
- Lutyens 1975, pp. 46, 125, 227. A.E. Wodehouse, an educator and brother of the poet and writer P.G. Wodehouse, was another prominent Theosophist. He resigned his OSE position in late 1920 and was replaced by Krishnamurti's brother Jiddu Nityananda ("Nitya", 1898–1925). After Nitya's death, D. Rajagopal assumed the post.
- Vernon 2001, pp. 10, 22, 38; Grand Forks Daily Herald 1912. "A stripling of fifteen, Krishnamurti, a Hindu is thought by many Theosophists to be a second Messiah and a new sect has been formed for his support with the star of the east the emblem." [Krishnamurti was seventeen-years-old at the time of the article's publication. His age or birth date have been often misquoted by both the media and people close to him (Lutyens 1975, p. 308 in "Notes and Sources": (note to) p. 2)].
- Wodehouse 1911.
- Lutyens 1975, p. 74. "Not all of them [i.e. OSE members] Theosophists".
- Hartmann 1925.
- Lutyens 1975, pp. 129, 135, 169–170, 171, 172–173; Vernon 2001, pp. 84, 85, 132–133.
- Lutyens 1975, pp. 54–55, 56. According to Leadbeater and other Theosophists, Krishnamurti had previously undergone a spiritual Initiation and had been accepted as a pupil by the reputed hidden overseers of the Theosophical Society (Lutyens 1975, "Chapter 4: First Initiation"–"Chapter 5: First Teaching" pp. 29–46 [cumulative]).
- Lutyens 1975, pp. 62, 82, 84, "Chapter 8: The Lawsuit" pp. 64–71.
- McDermott 1992. Rudolf Steiner, at the time leader of the German Section of the Theosophical Society, rejected the claims of Krishnamurti's messianic status. The resulting tensions between the German Section and Besant and Leadbeater was one of the reasons that led to a split in the Society and, in 1912, to Steiner forming the Anthroposophical Society.
- Lutyens 1975, pp. 42–43, 61, 134. Besant, and Leadbeater (who had been the subject of controversy and lurid accusations in the past), portrayed much of the opposition to the OSE and its mission – as well as the litigation regarding Krishnamurti's guardianship – as being part of wider, interrelated conflicts: ongoing debates about the role of the Theosophical Society in Indian life, and campaigns by political-religious opponents who disagreed with Besant's positions on Indian Home Rule. Upon acceptance of the OSE members' resignation by the school authorities, Besant, then College President, tendered her own resignation. The school's trustees asked her to reconsider, and she was later awarded an honorary doctorate; Das 1913. A contrary viewpoint to Besant's and Leadbeater's portrayal of events. The author, a co-founder of the CHC (Lubelsky 2012, p. 258) and former General Secretary of the Indian Section of the Theosophical Society, was opposed to the so-called World Teacher Project, the OSE, and eventually to Besant.
- Lutyens 1975, p. 129. Many of those present attended at great financial cost, according to Mary Lutyens.
- Landau 1943, . Rom Landau attended the 1927 Eerde, Ommen gathering and Star Camp at Krishnamurti's invitation. He described his impressions of the proceedings and of the attending members.
- Lutyens 1975, p. 74. "Neither the Theosophical Society nor the Order of the Star ever seemed to be prevented from carrying out any of their projects through lack of funds".
- Lutyens 1975, p. 246; Star [b]. Bulletin of the United States Section of the Order.
- Lutyens 1975, p. 232n. From the 1926 Annual Report of the Order.
- Lutyens 1975, "Chapter 25: The Self Appointed Apostles"–"Chapter 26: The First Manifestation" pp. 210–226 [cumulative].
- Lutyens 1975, pp. 214, 222.
- Lutyens 1975, p. 223. The 1925 Theosophical Convention took place on the 50th anniversary of the founding of the Theosophical Society. There were high expectations among Theosophists and Star members, mainly due to rumors of significant imminent manifestations related to the World Teacher. The Convention attracted large crowds and wide representation by the international media.
- Lutyens 1975, pp. 223–225. Mary Lutyens, then seventeen-years-old, was present at the event and was one of those affected. In her diary she described the perceived manifestation "as a fact" at the time, and still recalled the event as genuinely unusual in 1975; Krishnamurti also thought the event important at the time of its happening, although he stated that he could not recall details. However, not all of those present noticed anything unusual (Vernon 2001, p. 158).
- New York Times 1926; Washington Post 1926. Report of the 1926 Convention of the United Kingdom Section of the Theosophical Society.
- Los Angeles Times 1926b. This press report considered "the strenuous efforts" of Besant "and her cult" regarding the World Teacher as objects of amusement; in contrast, Krishnamurti was said to "have retained no little common sense despite his recent dip into theosophy".
- Boston Daily Globe 1926. "Whether one believes in this 'second coming' or not, interest is being displayed in this question throughout the world. In many cases representatives of orthodox religious organizations have expressed receptiveness to this belief. ... There is widespread expectation of such an event, which disregards denominational and religious and even national boundaries. In India, where this movement began, this common expectation is revealed in an unusual way, when Mahometans, Buddhists and Christians sit together without any holy war starting, to hear Krishnamurti"; but see NEWCAT – the Library Catalogue of the University of Newcastle, Australia . [Library holding of a title published c. 1926, that presents an opposing view.]
- Lutyens 1975, p. 241. Statement of Besant to the Associated Press.
- Star [a]; Lutyens 1975, pp. 178, 245–246. The renamed organization was headquartered at Castle Eerde. The 18th century castle and 5,000 acres (8 sq mi) of the surrounding estate had been gifted to the OSE in the early 1920s.
- Tillet 1986, p. 766; Lutyens 1975, pp. 257, 258n. In the then–prominent Esoteric Christology of Theosophists, the World Mother corresponded to the Virgin Mary, the World Teacher being the embodiment of the Christ-principle. Rukmini Arundale was to be the World Mother's vehicle; however, the project has also been described as an attempt (by leading Theosophists opposing him) to sideline Krishnamurti, who was by then becoming increasingly vocal in his maverick course (Vernon 2001, pp. 174–175).
- Los Angeles Times 1926a. Krishnamurti interviewed by the Los Angeles Times 25 May 1926, during a visit to Paris.
- Jiddu Krishnamurti § Life-altering experiences; Lutyens 1975, "Chapter 18: The Turning Point"–"Chapter 21: Climax of the Process" pp. 152–188 [cumulative], pp. 219–222, 236, 265–266, 276. Krishnamurti experienced life-changing events of physical, psychological and spiritual nature starting in 1922. These mystified the leaders of the Theosophical Society who were ultimately unable to explain them, but provided Krishnamurti with an avenue of growth and life independent of Theosophy, the Order, and the Society. In addition, his younger brother Nitya died in November 1925. His death deeply affected Krishnamurti, who had received assurances regarding Nitya's well-being by prominent Theosophists and reputedly, by members of the hidden Spiritual Hierarchy. His continuing disagreements with leading Theosophists became more acute, despite Besant's efforts for conciliation. She offered to resign as President of the Society, and in 1928, in sympathy with Krishnamurti, closed the Esoteric Section. She reopened it after the dissolution of the Order.
- D. Rajagopal 1929. In the previously official bulletin of the Order of the Star. The bulletin published several issues post-dissolution, following Krishnamurti's new direction (Lutyens 1975, p. 314 [in "Notes and Sources": (note to) p. 246]).
- Washington Post 1929.
- Lutyens 1975, p. 272.
- J. Krishnamurti 1929.
- Lutyens 1975, pp. 277–279, 315 [in "Notes and Sources": (notes to) pp. 278–279]. Letters by Krishnamurti to Emily Lutyens (December 1929, including reference to reputed quote by Leadbeater) and Annie Besant (February 1930), and reaction of leading Theosophists to the dissolution.
- Vernon 2001, p. 179; Réhault 2006, pp. 9, 10.
- Lutyens 1975, pp. 276, 285. Krishnamurti remained on friendly terms with individual members of the Society. In 1980, he visited the Adyar Headquarters after an almost 50-year absence, and "reconciled the rift that seemingly existed between him and the Society." (Rodrigues 2012, p. 470).
- Vernon 2001, pp. 180–181, 186, 213–215.
- J. Krishnamurti c. 1980.
- Lutyens 1975, p. 276.
- Weatherby 1986. An obituary of Krishnamurti.
- Tillet 1986, p. 943n.
- Taylor 1992, p. 328; Rodrigues 2012, p. 472. "[M]any ... were wealthy and influential in their countries."
- Roe 1986, p. 288.
- Campbell 1980, pp. 130, 176. Almost half a century later (1980), the Theosophical Society Adyar had about 35,000 members.
- Vernon 2001, pp. 188–189.
- Schüller 2001. "Introduction by the editor". In van der Leeuw (1930), [2001 Alpheus online edition]. Retrieved 2015-08-14. Annotation, to commentary about the crisis in the Theosophical Society after the dissolution of the Order of the Star. Original 1930 commentary by a prominent Dutch Theosophist; Schüller 1997. Later analysis from a theosophical perspective, examines whether the project may have failed relative only to contemporary expectations; Rodrigues 2012, pp. 477, 482. A non-theosophical evaluation of the project and its consequences. Such evaluations face questions "without unambiguous answers" according to the author. He states, "features of Krishnamurti’s post-Theosophical life aligned itself in certain respects with the dispositions to which he was conditioned as the physical vehicle for 'Lord Maitreya,' but veered away from those dispositions in certain crucial areas".
- Vernon 2001, pp. 268–270. Roland Vernon briefly comments on contemporary Theosophy. He writes of the changes in the outlook of the Theosophical Society Adyar since the era of Besant and Leadbeater, and of the Society's continuing relationship with, and influence by, Krishnamurti and his message.
- Schüller 2008; Lubelsky 2012, p. 317.
- "An unwilling Messiah" (pdf). The Los Angeles Times. 30 May 1926. p. B4. ISSN 0458-3035. Retrieved 2015-08-06 – via ProQuest Historical Newspapers. (subscription required (. ))
- Besant, Annie & Leadbeater, Charles W. (1922) [originally published 1913. Adyar: Theosophical Publishing House]. Man: how, whence, and whither; a record of clairvoyant investigation. Chicago: Theosophical Press. OCLC 827205223.
- —— & —— (2003) [originally published 1924. Adyar: Theosophical Publishing House]. The lives of alcyone (paperback in 2 volumes). Part 1 (reprint of 1924 ed.). Whitefish, Montana: Kessinger Publishing. ISBN 978-0-7661-4812-3.
- Blavatsky, Helena (1889). The key to theosophy (hardcover). London: The Theosophical Publishing Company. OCLC 670372239.
- Campbell, Bruce F. (1980). Ancient wisdom revived: a history of the Theosophical movement (hardcover). Berkeley, California: University of California Press. ISBN 978-0-520-03968-1.
- "Christ will soon visit Earth again. Head of Theosophical Society declares His spirit will manifest Itself". Associated Press (News agency) (New York). 3 August 1909.
- "Cult is dissolved by Krishnamurti; surprises devotees by asserting organization is not necessary" (pdf). The Washington Post. Associated Press. 4 August 1929. p. M21. ISSN 0190-8286. Retrieved 2015-08-06 – via ProQuest Historical Newspapers. (subscription required (. ))
- D. Rajagopal, ed. (September 1929). "Editorial Policy". International Star Bulletin. [New series] (Eerde, Ommen: Star Publishing Trust) (2): 4. OCLC 34693176.
- Das, Bhagwan (Bhagavan) (1913). The central Hindu college and Mrs Besant: the rise of the Alcyone cult (pdf) (pamphlet). Chicago: Divine Life Press. OCLC 224439627. Archived from the original on 2015-07-29. Retrieved 2010-04-12 – via The Science and Spirit Foundation [as "The Esoteric Section Exposed"].
- Goodrick-Clarke, Nicholas (2004). Helena Blavatsky (paperback). Western Esoteric Masters. Berkeley, California: North Atlantic Books. ISBN 978-1-55643-457-0.
- Hartmann, William C. (1925). "The Order of the Star in the East" (pdf). Hartmann's who's who in occult, psychic and spiritual realms (hardcover). Jamaica, New York: Occult Press. pp. 110–111. OCLC 38253911. Archived from the original on 2015-08-11. Retrieved 2015-08-11 – via Emma Hardinge Britten Archive.
- Hotchener, Marie (ed.). "The Order of the Star". The Star (Los Angeles: Star Publishing Trust) (All issues): back matter. OCLC 10990552.
- —— (ed.). "The Star: its purpose and policy". The Star (Los Angeles: Star Publishing Trust) (All issues): back matter. OCLC 10990552.
- Jiddu, Krishnamurti (1929). The dissolution of the order of the star: a statement (pamphlet). Eerde, Ommen: Star Publishing Trust. OCLC 32954280. Archived from the original on 2015-07-29. Retrieved 2011-11-02 – via J. Krishnamurti Online.
[On cover:] January 11, 1911 Benares [;] Ommen August 3, 1929.
- —— (c. 1980). "The Core of the Teachings". J. Krishnamurti Online. Krishnamurti Foundations (published c. 2010). Archived from the original on 2015-07-29. Retrieved 2011-01-28.
- Kalnitsky, Arnold (2003). The theosophical movement of the nineteenth century: the legitimation of the disputable and the entrenchment of the disreputable (D.Litt et Phil. thesis). Steyn, H.C. (advisor). Pretoria: Dept. of Religious Studies and Arabic, University of South Africa. OCLC 53185280. hdl:10500/2108 – via Unisa ETD.
- Kuhn, Alvin Boyd (1931). Theosophy: a modern revival of ancient wisdom (PhD thesis). American Religion Series 2. Awarded by Columbia University. New York: Holt (published 1930). OCLC 602891867. Retrieved 2015-08-13 – via Internet Archive.
- Lachman, Gary (2012). Madame Blavatsky: the mother of modern spirituality (paperback). New York: Jeremy P. Tarcher. ISBN 978-1-58542-863-2.
- Landau, Rom (1943) [originally published 1935. London: I. Nicholson and Watson]. God is my adventure: a book on modern mystics, masters, and teachers. London: Faber and Faber. OCLC 561790498. Retrieved 2010-09-25 – via Internet Archive.
- Leadbeater, Charles W. (2007) [originally published 1925. Chicago: Theosophical Press]. The masters and the path (paperback) (reprint ed.). New York: Cosimo Classics. ISBN 978-1-60206-333-4.
- Lubelsky, Isaac (2012). Madame Blavatsky and the birth of Indian nationalism (hardcover). Translated by Lotan, Yael. Sheffield, UK; Oakville, Connecticut: Equinox. ISBN 978-1-84553-922-1.
- Lutyens, Mary (1975). Krishnamurti: the years of awakening (hardcover) (1st US ed.). New York: Farrar, Straus and Giroux. ISBN 978-0-374-18222-9.
- McDermott, Robert A. (1992). "Rudolf Steiner and Anthroposophy". In Faivre, Antoine & Needleman, Jacob. Modern esoteric spirituality (hardcover). World Spirituality 21 (1st ed.). New York: Crossroad Publishing Company. pp. 288–310. ISBN 978-0-82451-145-6.
- "Messiah pooh-poohs role; Krishnamurti declares world saving mere rubbish; plans to study on Los Angeles ranch" (pdf). The Los Angeles Times. Cable – exclusive dispatch. 26 May 1926. p. 6. ISSN 0458-3035. Retrieved 2015-08-06 – via ProQuest Historical Newspapers. (subscription required (. ))
- "New religion is headed by youth". Grand Forks Daily Herald (Grand Forks, North Dakota: Geo. B. Winship). 2 April 1912. p. 1. OCLC 12165939. Retrieved 2015-08-06 – via NewsBank: America’s Historical Newspapers. (subscription required (. )) (OpenURL weblink).
- Réhault, Ludowic (2006) [originally published 1934 in French as L' Instructeur du Monde, Krishnamurti. Nice: Table d'Harmonie]. Krishnamurti: man is his own liberator (paperback). Translated by Harper, Ina (reprint of 1939 Christopher Publishing House ed.). Whitefish, Montana: Kessinger Publishing. ISBN 978-1-4286-5570-6.
- Rodrigues, Hillary (2012). "Chapter 19: Young Lord Maitreya: The Curious Case of Jiddu Krishnamurti". In Sasson, Vanessa R. Little Buddhas: children and childhoods in Buddhist texts and traditions (hardcover). New York: Oxford University Press. pp. 453–482. doi:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199860265.003.0019. ISBN 978-0-19986-026-5 – via Oxford Scholarship Online. (subscription required (. ))
- Roe, Jill (1986). Beyond belief: theosophy in Australia 1879-1939 (paperback). Modern History 3. Sydney: University of New South Wales Press. ISBN 978-0-86840-042-6.
- Row, M. C. Nanjunda (29 January 1911). "Thoughts about Matters Theosophical". Letters to the Editor. The Leader (Allahabad: K. Ram). pp. 7–8. OCLC 29040706. Retrieved 2015-08-06 – via NewsBank: World Newspaper Archive [in multiple-item archive "The Leader. January 28, 1911" pp. 20–21]. (subscription required (. )) (OpenURL weblink).
- Schüller, Govert W. (25 May 1997). Santucci, James A., ed. "Krishnamurti and the World-Teacher Project: Some Theosophical Perceptions". Theosophical History. Occasional Papers (Fullerton, California: Theosophical History Foundation) 5. ISSN 1068-2597. Archived from the original on 2015-07-29. Retrieved 2010-05-17 – via Alpheus.
- —— (1999) [originally published 1997]. "The Masters and their emissaries: From H.P.B. to Guru Ma and beyond". Alpheus. Carol Stream, Illinois: Self-published. Archived from the original on 2015-07-29. Retrieved 2010-10-22.
[At 'Krishnamurti: Bibliography' entry:] 2nd edition.
- —— (2008). "The State of the TS (Adyar) in 2008: a psycho-esoteric interpretation (draft)". Alpheus. Carol Stream, Illinois: Self-published. Archived from the original on 2015-07-29. Retrieved 2010-10-13.
- Taylor, Anne (1992). Annie Besant: a biography (hardcover). Oxford: Oxford University Press. ISBN 978-0-19-211796-0.
- "Theosophist 'Messiah' will visit America; mrs. Besant to accompany Hindu on world tour—dissenters are quitting cult" (pdf). The New York Times. Wireless to The New York Times. 2 March 1926. p. 8. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2015-08-06 – via ProQuest Historical Newspapers. (subscription required (. ))
- "Theosophists give Mrs. Annie Besant confidence ballot; veteran leader threatens to resign as Head of British movement. Delegates divided on 'World Teacher'; official points out that vote is no indorsement of Krishnamurti" (pdf). The Washington Post. Associated Press. 13 June 1926. p. M13. ISSN 0190-8286. Retrieved 2015-08-06 – via ProQuest Historical Newspapers. (subscription required (. ))
- "Theosophists prepare for their new Messiah" (pdf). Boston Daily Globe (Globe Publishing). 20 March 1926. p. A4. OCLC 12674818. Retrieved 2015-08-06 – via ProQuest Historical Newspapers. (subscription required (. ))
- Tillet, Gregory J. (1986). Charles Webster Leadbeater 1854–1934: a biographical study (PhD thesis). Dept. of Religious Studies, University of Sydney. OCLC 271774444. hdl:2123/1623 – via Sydney eScholarship.
- van der Leeuw, Johannes J. (1930). Revelation or realization: the conflict in theosophy (pamphlet). Amsterdam: Theosofische Vereeniging Uitgevers Maatschappy. OCLC 500301988. Archived from the original on 2015-07-29. Retrieved 2010-10-03 – via Alpheus.
- Vernon, Roland (2001). Star in the east: Krishnamurti: the invention of a messiah (hardcover). New York: Palgrave. ISBN 978-0-312-23825-4.
- Weatherby, William J. (19 February 1986). "Wise traveller in a pathless land" (pdf). The Guardian (London). p. 21. ISSN 0261-3077. Retrieved 2015-08-06 – via ProQuest Historical Newspapers. (subscription required (. ))
- Wodehouse, Ernest A. (1911). The order of the star in the east: its outer and inner work (pamphlet). Adyar: Theosophist Office. OCLC 258767581. Archived from the original on 2015-07-29. Retrieved 2010-10-08 – via KatinkaHesselink.net.
- Wood, Ernest (December 1964). "No Religion Higher than Truth". The American Theosophist (Wheaton, Illinois: Theosophical Society in America) 52 (12): 287–290. ISSN 0003-1402. Archived from the original on 2015-07-29. Retrieved 2010-08-14 – via KatinkaHesselink.net.
- Theosophical Society Adyar. Scroll to section "Material from before the disolvement [sic] of the order of the star". Katinka Hesselink. – Hosted at , an independent website by a member of the
- Alpheus.org, an independent website. Govert W. Schüller. – Information and commentary on the relationship between Krishnamurti and the Theosophical Society, hosted at