Isis Unveiled. By H. P. Blavatsky. Vols. I. and II.
(Bontor, New York ; Quaritch, London.)—Under this symbolic name, singularly appropriate to an author who is a corresponding secretary of the
Theosophical Society, which, it seems, has been recently founded in New York, is denoted a work the object of which is that its readers, who will, we hope, be both numerous and earnest, may "look with nn- dazzled gaze on the unveiled truth." As it consists of two very pon- derous octavo volumes, it would have boon considerate in the author to have given us a summary of their contents, as well as the index, which is certainly a copious one. One volume is styled " science," the other " theology," but as far as we can see, the distinction between the two is not very clearly marked. The author wants to set us all right, and this book is described as " a master-key to the mysteries of ancient and modern science and theology." In a fashion, the descrip- tion is justified ; at any rate, a huge mass of material is made the sub- ject of speculations which, for the most part, are not new to us. It would seem that we are rather in a bad way. Modern science is like " the Hindu vampire of popular fancy, which lives on dead bodies, and the theology of Christendom is found to be subversive rather than promotive of spirituality and good morals." Oar author appears to have quite a fanatical hatred of Christianity, which is pronounced to have been responsible for the worst cruelties that have ever been committed. Its doctrines have been simply plagiarised from Paganism. One would have naturally inferred that Paganism must have been intolerably bad, as well as Christianity; but according to our author, "it was ancient wisdom, replete with Deity." On the whole, what is to be done, and where is truth to be found, and when shall we be able to look on it " with undazzled gaze?" It seems that Spiritualism may do a good deal for us, though " in our sober and positive century it has met with but a poor welcome." We really thought that both in America and England it had had a host of earnest disciples ; indeed, it has been hinted that it has turned a good many heads. But in our author's opinion, it has not yet been well and effectively presented to the world.