[Introductory Note to “Missions in India”]
Theosophist, January, 1880
Introductory Note by H.P.B. to an article by Alice Gordon
Most opportunely there comes a communication upon the missionary question, which will be found elsewhere. The writer, one of the most estimable ladies in India, is wife of Lt.-Col. William Gordon, F.T.S., Staff Corps, District Superintendent of Police, Mânbhûm, Bengal. A recent letter of hers to The Pioneer, upon the subject of Spiritualism, occasioned a very active discussion; and since she now expresses the opinion of all Anglo-Indians as regards missionary work in India, it is probable that the public will be favored with a much needed ventilation of a gross abuse of long standing. A false delicacy has hitherto prevented this matter from being gone into as its importance deserves. It is a pity to see so many sacrifices made by good people in the West merely to support a party of inefficients in the profitless because hopeless occupation of trying to persuade the people of India and other Asiatic countries to relinquish their ancestral faith for one which the missionaries are utterly unable to defend when questioned by even tolerably educated “heathen.” The money is sorely needed at home to feed the hungry, clothe the naked, and rescue the vicious from their state of lawlessness and degradation. It does no good here—except to the missionary.
[Note: the article by Alice Gordon can be found on p. 100 of The Theosophist, January, 1880. It is well worth reading, as it adds additional context to H.P.B.’s many articles related to the Missionaries in India.]