[Notes on Sophia, Aditya and Kshetra]
Theosophist, February, 1884
Selections from a Review of “Buddha and Early Buddhism” by Arthur Llillie, by Dharani Dhar Kauthumi | Notes by H.P.B.
On page 5, we read:—
“The feminine principle, matter, the earth, the universal mother. She is the Sophia of Gnostics,1 Cabalists, etc., and was represented as feminine in the Catacombs by the early Christians. In Buddhism (?) she is called Prajñā, an exact verbal equivalent for Sophia.”
Here, the ground is more secure for us. If anything is not cosmic matter, or Prakriti, it is Prajñā. . . .
1. Sophia of the Gnostics—“matter, the earth”!! What Gnostic, or Kabalist would ever concur in this wild notion? This is materialism with a vengeance. Prajñā or wisdom is certainly the Sophia of the Greeks, but both are the sum total of universal spiritual wisdom.
On page 10 we are told that:—
“The solar God-man is the son of God but also the son of earth (Aditya).”
To begin with, Aditya never means “the son of earth”—not in Sanskrit at all events. It simply means the son of Aditi, the primeval Father and Mother, the bisexual principle in nature. Does the author force this parentage upon the “God-man” because Aditi is represented in the Rig-Veda as dividing into Nara and Nari, the male and the female principle, and that unluckily for Mr. Lillie the word “Nara” also means a “Man”?2 Then he speaks of the Aditya being seven in number (page 11); a grievous mistake, as every man, woman an child in India know; for these Aditya are twelve. . . .
2. For clearer comprehension we offer for comparison the counterpart of this mythos, in the Jewish Bible and the Kabala. See Chapter I of Genesis “male and female created he them,” and ponder over what is given of Adam Kadmon, the ancient of days, etc.
. . . Lower down on the same page Mr. Lillie says:— “the fatherly procreative principle” is also called kshetra,” whereas kshetra is always the female and never the male procreative principle.3 . . .
3. Mr. Lillie is evidently ignorant of the meaning of the term “Kshetra.” Exoterically it means simply—“field,” while esoterically it represents “the great abyss” of the Kabalists, the chaos and the plane (cteis or yoni), in which the Creative energy implants the germ of the manifested universe. In other words they are the Purusha and Prakriti of Kapila, the blind and the cripple producing motion by their union, Purusha supplying the head and Prakriti the limbs.