TWENTY-SEVENTH TALK 549
murders are only a fev ; so that it is quite true that,
in the aggregate, more harm is done.
Think of a few 'cases which we ourselves know.
Take the cases of our great Founder, Madame
Blavatsky, and her successor, our present President,
and you will see what has been done by gossip. A gr^at
deal of gossip was started about Madame Blavatsky.
All kinds of mad and wild accusations were brought
against her. They were utterly ridiculous to us who
knew her personally, but they did not appear equally
ridiculous to those who did not know her ; and be-
cause of that, I suppose, we can hardly estimate how
many thousands of people may have been prevented
from coming to her and learning from her, as
they otherwise might have done. I suppose the
interest excited by Theosophy has been very much
wider, many scores of times wider than is testified
by the number of those who have joined the
Theosophical Society. I have personally known of
scores of people \^ho havejbeen put off from further
examination of it by stories about Madame Blavatsky.
To this day, although she died in i89i, it is quite a
common thing, if you speak to anybody about the
Theosophical Society, to be met by the remark ;
(t Oh, yes, that was founded by Madame Blavatsky,
and she was exposed long ago as a fraud, as a
charlatan." So there is that gossip living after all
these years, and still continuing to do harm, still
keeping people from taking the advantage which