More Conspiracy Thinking About Alice Bailey: The United Nations

by Isobel Blackthorn

For conspiracy thinkers in the 1950s and 60s, the United Nations exemplified not internationalism as Alice Bailey pictured the organisation, but totalitarianism. As if Hitler, Stalin, Franco and Mussolini were not bad enough, Chairman Mao Zedong implemented his own communist version of group consciousness, the individual forced to serve the ideals of Chairman Mao. A consequence of this experiment was the great famine of 1959-61, leading to the deaths of up to forty-five million people. This example of a totalitarian regime requiring citizens to kowtow to a typically despotic leader, one with distorted ideals and a self-centred vision, terrified sections of the American community after McCarthy whipped up anti-communist fears. 

The New World Order narrative emerged out of this anti-communist sentiment along with a newly politicised fear of global tyranny coming in the wake of the creation of collective security organisations: the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation and the United Nations.  This narrative pivots on the apprehension of a hidden plot to subsume sovereign nations, and personal autonomy by extension, under a one-world government.

As the twenty-first century unfolds in the shadows of the bombing of the World Trade Centre in 2001 and the global financial crisis of 2008, the New World Order narrative has gained credence. Both events have ushered in a new era of chaos and uncertainty, with deep fears in the populace concerning matters of terror and security, unjustified wars, and a widespread mistrust in the global financial system and the political will to do something about it.

All conspiracy theories require a scapegoat or fall guy, a human agent masterminding the plot. Alice Bailey is an easy target.  She’s a Theosophist – and in conspiracy circles, Theosophists are known to be an evil, occult sect aligned with the Nazis. She’s dead, so can offer no defence, and she’s a woman, a soft target. She moved in high circles, counting among her friends numerous dukes and baronesses and sirs. She was linked to Freemasonry via her husband. As if that were all not damning enough, when Bailey made numerous statements in her texts in support of the United Nations, she effectively handed New World Order conspiracy thinkers the rope for her own execution. 

The New World Order mega-theory is one of the most influential and persuasive conspiracy narratives at large today and has many variants. With respect to the United Nations version, not only does Alice Bailey’s writing provide substantial material that feeds the secret-occult-order trope, leading figures within the United Nations are known or thought to be or have been followers or admirers of her teachings, or have loose associations, arousing paranoia that the organisation has in fact been infiltrated.

This apparent merging of the occult with the United Nations in the eyes of conspiracists enables them to claim that various behind-the-scenes actors controlling the UN have a secret agenda to institute an evil plan laid out by Alice Bailey. It is a plan of absolute global control and domination of the economic, religious, political and social spheres. In effect, a one-world government with malevolent intent, poised to impose martial law over the United States, and institute programs of global depopulation.

Whenever conspiracists feel a need to justify their claims regarding the UN, they need only point to Alice Bailey. Since Bailey’s oeuvre is esoteric in nature and she had the audacity to re-interpret the role and significance of Christ, it seems predictable that the Bailey mega-theory has firm roots in the Christian far right.

One example can be found in Lee Penn’s False Dawn: The United Religions Initiative, Globalism, and the Quest for a One-World Religion. The primary focus of Penn’s attack is the United Religions Initiative, which was launched by his former bishop, Bishop Swing, in 1995 to promote interfaith cooperation and help put an end to religiously motivated violence. Bishop Swing’s stance caused Penn to leave the Episcopalian church and switch to Eastern Catholicism. The URI describes itself as:

‘a global grassroots interfaith network that cultivates peace and justice by engaging people to bridge religious and cultural differences and work together for the good of their communities and the world.’

http://www.uri.org

It is this trajectory towards universality that upset Penn, who saw his Eastern Catholic faith undermined; his own newly adopted and closely held creed no longer regarded as absolute truth, but positioned relative to other creeds. Penn is concerned that those associated with the URI are also proposing to construct a new world order through the United Nations. Penn goes on to cite the various ways that the URI and the UN are linked.

Penn’s scope is broad, his referencing meticulous, and his work has all the appearance of thoroughness and rigor. And he demonstrates the hallmarks of the conspiracy thinker. Having pre-judged the URI and all its associates, Penn bases his argument in part on the assumption that it is possible to assess the motives of an organisation based on the affiliations of its membership. Second, he believes that an organisation should be condemned on the basis of an apparent association with a particular current of thought, the New Age. Third, he believes that this current of thought is essentially evil. He then applies a dot-joining technique that masquerades as incisive analysis, stringing together various extracts taken out of context as representative of whole bodies of work and using them as evidence to support his claims.

In conspiratorial fashion, after citing the URI’s relationship with the United Nations, in a part of his work titled “Servants of the Shining Darkness: The Anti-Gospel of the New Age Movement”, Penn directs his scaremongering at Theosophists Blavatsky and Bailey, and idealist philosopher Teilhard de Chardin, all of whom advocate notions of interconnectedness, inclusivity or unity. In his Bailey chapter, from the outset he asks his readers to keep in mind the number of Bailey followers who have donated to the URI, including, according to him, Barbara Marx Hubbard, Jean Houston, Avon Mattison and Robert Muller.

Penn begins his analysis by focusing on concerns raised by Cumbey that Bailey’s work is representative of the Antichrist, before spotlighting her statements relating to population control in which she, like many other thinkers of her time, considers ways to limit growth of the human population.

For Penn, matters of abortion and contraception, and the right of women to choose what happens to their bodies, cannot easily be separated from concerns over some imagined eugenics or ruthless cull being plotted by the United Nations. Ironically, Alice Bailey’s Edwardian moral values and sensibilities meant she distanced herself from her feminist sisters, including vociferous birth control campaigner Rose Pastor Stokes. For Stokes, women’s bodies were paramount, for Bailey it was the planetary body. Besides, Bailey argues that population control should be exercised not through some despotic program of eugenics, but through the exercise of personal self-control.

Penn’s presentation of Bailey’s teachings comprises little more than a series of quotes and linking sentences, as though, bereft of their original context, these quotes are able to more or less speak for themselves. In the section of his chapter titled ‘Bailey’s New World Order: “A New Power of Sacrifice”’ the only interpretation Penn offers is an accusation that Bailey is guilty of ‘spiritual totalitarianism’.

In support of his claim, Penn draws on Bailey’s vision for the New Age as based on group interplay, group idealism and group consciousness. He seems alarmed at the notion that individual awareness will become blended into group awareness, and that the individual is encouraged to surrender to the good of the whole. For him, this represents a loss of personal autonomy, something sacrosanct amongst conspiracists.

Soul awareness, or merging into group awareness isn’t a loss; it’s a gain, an expanded sense of self that carries with it a profound sense of sublime fulfilment and a kind of serene wellbeing, of feeling filled with love and joy. It’s similar to the feeling you get when you fall completely in love and feel yourself expanding. Or when you hold a newborn in your arms. You are still you, but you are also bigger than you. It is a both-and situation.

Penn seems incapable of understanding this. Using a string of quotes, he seeks to demonstrate what spiritual totalitarianism might look like. He conflates Bailey’s notion of subordinating the individual personality’s wants and wishes for the good of the whole as a form of Orwellian Big Brother.

For Penn, the New World Order equates to The Plan, which in turn equates to dictatorship.

Most references to a new world order in Bailey’s writings, were given in pamphlets to the New Group of World Servers’ Units of Service, collated in The Externalisation of the Hierarchy. Here the new world order concerns:

‘A general process of educating the public in the fact and use of goodwill. A great but undeveloped potency is still locked up in mankind which, if evoked by man himself, will prove adequate to do two things:
 
1.     Lay the foundation for a stable peace—active and positive because the result of active and positive action—after the Forces of Light have won the victory upon the physical plane.
 
2.     Provide the subjective synthesis or network of light embodying the force of goodwill as the expression of right human relations. This will guarantee a workable world order and not an imposed tyranny or a mystical and impossible dream.’ 

Externalisation of the Hierarchy, 321-2.

When Bailey affirms the bringing about of ‘the eventual synthesis and unification of men of goodwill and of understanding into one coherent body,’ (Esoteric Psychology II, 669) the only harm that can be found in the idea is seated in ill-conceived threats to the individual ego, or the personality-centred individual. Conspiracy theorists like Penn see into this notion of the individual sacrificing their selfish desires, impulses and drives for the good of the whole, a loss of personal power and autonomy. Yet the entirety of Bailey’s work is spiritual and concerns the evolution of the soul, one that involves a journey away from all of the divisions that the personality likes to surround itself with, towards the embodiment of love. Goodwill is simply an ordinary and everyday expression of agape.

If conspiracists stopped for a moment and attempted to understand that the individual is not sacrificed for the good of the whole, that when Bailey talks of group consciousness, another may talk of the importance of community or neighbourhood, they might see that they are reacting to language, to words, only because they have imbued those words with meanings that were never intended.

Read my previous articles here:

https://isobelblackthorn.com/2021/01/18/alice-bailey-and-the-new-world-order/

https://isobelblackthorn.com/2021/01/27/new-world-order-and-alice-bailey-whats-the-evidence/

Isobel Blackthorn, PhD, is the author of The Unlikely Occultist: a biographical novel of Alice A. Bailey, and the biography Alice A. Bailey: Life & Legacy

New World Order and Alice Bailey: What’s the Evidence?

by Isobel Blackthorn

Mother of the New Age movement Alice Bailey has been the bête noire of conspiracy thinkers for decades, helped along by Christian writer Constance Cumbey. See https://isobelblackthorn.com/2021/01/18/alice-bailey-and-the-new-world-order/ The tap root that anchors this conspiracy theory is the notion of a new world order, a phrase much used in the Bailey teachings. What Bailey meant and what conspiracy thinkers think Bailey meant are entirely different. For Bailey, the new world order is a term grounded in good for all, ‘founded on an active sense of responsibility’ in which ‘the governing body in any nation should be composed of those who work for the greatest good for the greatest number and who at the same time offer opportunity to all, seeing to it that the individual is left free.’ Alice Bailey, Externalisation of the Hierarchy, p191. In the same passages, Bailey talks of the need for democracy, equality, equal opportunity, a fair sharing of natural resources, universal education, and steady and regulated disarmament. For Bailey, a new world order is the antithesis of totalitarian rule.

Conspiracy theorists do not appear to be interested in what Bailey wrote about the new world order. When it comes to Alice Bailey, New World Order conspiracy theorists Terry Melanson and David Livingstone appear more interested in who they can claim were on the board of trustees of Bailey’s publishing arm, the Lucis Trust. According to these theorists John D. Rockefeller, Norman Cousins, Robert S. McNamara, Thomas Watson, Jr., Henry Clausen and Henry Kissinger were ‘said to have been’ all board members. see Terry Melanson, “Lucis Trust, Alice Bailey, World Goodwill and the False Light of the World”  http://www.conspiracyarchive.com/NewAge/Lucis_Trust.htm and David Livingstone, “The Age of Aquarius: Sex, Drugs, and Rock ‘N Roll”  http://www.conspiracyschool.com/age-aquarius

It appears that condemnation by association is enough for these conspiracy thinkers.

The Fellowship of Minds website also has the United Nations’ Spiritual Caucus in its sights, on April 9, 2011 posting ‘UN, Hotbed of New Age Occult: The Spiritual Caucus,’ making the point in the first sentence that the United States’ taxpayer is funding these ‘pagan’ practices. In the website url, ‘occult’ is replaced with ‘satanism’. https://fellowshipoftheminds.com/un-hotbed-of-new-age-satanism-the-spiritual-caucus (It should be noted that this Spiritual Caucus is small compared to the myriad other caucuses at the UN, exerting little tangible influence over UN proceedings.)

Other Christian-right conspiracists prefer summaries and lists. They’ve made a ten-point plan in Bailey’s name for the new world order, to be adopted by the United Nations. This plan is said to involve: taking God out of institutions of learning; reducing parental authority over children; destroying the Judeo-Christian family structure; legalising divorce and abortion; allowing homosexuality; debasing art; using media to change how we think; creating an interfaith movement; and requiring governments to adopts the plan.  see “Ten Point Plan of the New World Order”  https://plannedpurity.files.wordpress.com/2013/06/the_tenpoint_plan_of_the_new_world_order-1.pdf 

“The United Nations 10 Point Plan”  http://kingdomnewsng.com/more/prayers/223-the-plan-the-united-nations-10-point-plan 

and “Alice Baileys 10 Point Plan” Battle Cry for Christ.  http://battlecryforchrist.blogspot.com.au/2013/12/alice-baileys-10-point-plan.html

In a post entitled ‘NAFTA: The Shocking Rest of the Story” Forbidden Knowledge, a leading conspiracy website, makes reference to Bailey’s work with regard to the creation of ten spheres of influence in the reorganisation of global power into ten super states. The number ‘ten’ is of import as it is seen to refer to completion. – “NAFTA: The Shocking “Rest of the Story”  http://www.theforbiddenknowledge.com/hardtruth/nafta_nwo.htm

It is in this piecemeal fashion that Alice Bailey’s name is bandied about in conspiracy circles. While serving to discredit her teachings, there is a more disturbing aspect to this conspiracy theorising. The sinister motives attributed to Bailey have fed into a broader mistrust of the United Nations and vice versa. This mistrust is pervasive and goes far beyond the Christian right.

On July 15, 2015, Salon published an article by Bob Cesca announcing that leading far right conspiracy proponent Alex Jones warns his listeners that ‘The UN is a “space cult” plotting to eradicate humanity by making our children gay.’  http://www.salon.com/2015/07/14/alex_jones_warns_listeners_the_un_is_space_cult_plotting_to_eradicate_humanity_by_making_our_children_gay/

On June 30, 2016, in his online news magazine Infowars (now banned from Facebook), the controversial conspiracist Alex Jones alleges that the United Nations is seeking to quietly invade the USA. On 29, August 2016, Jones announces that if Obama abdicates Internet stewardship, the United Nations might take control of it. While the original article was published in the Wall Street Journal, Jones’ takes hold of it in order to add to his smear campaign of the UN. And on September 2, 2015, Jim Marrs posted on his website an article by Michael Snyder concerning the 2030 Agenda: The United Nations blueprint for a New World Order with the help of the pope.

The anti-Bailey sentiment amongst leading conspiracy theorists is strong; so strong that professional conspiracy thinker David Icke was at pains to distance himself from all association with Bailey’s thinking after accusations flew in the early half of this decade that he’d drawn on her teachings to inform two of his early book titles, The Truth Vibrations and Love Changes Everything. No one, it seems, is immune from attack. Since then, amongst his anti-New World Order output, Icke makes bold alarmist claims that the United Nations is seeking to expand its peacekeeping forces. For conspiracy theorists like Icke, the United Nations is forever involved in political manipulations in the service of the New World Order.

Most of what is written on the array of online media sites appears to be superficial, sensational and repetitive, the anti-Bailey conspiracy narrative held together by flimsy evidence, a headline, an insinuation, an association. The literature is not much better. It also seems conspiracists targeting Bailey and the UN seek to undermine initiatives for human and planetary betterment. In this sense, unlike other conspiracists, such as those seeking to reveal assassination cover-ups, or those concerning aliens and UFOs, the Bailey mega-theory is fundamentally anti-life, in effect becoming its own other, an embodiment of the very aims it so vehemently opposes.

In my view, it is important to counter the conspiracy narrative surrounding Alice Bailey by pointing out what she actually stood for: goodwill and right relations. Everything she taught boils down to, quite simply, learning to be a good person. I’d be the first to put up my hand and say I’m still learning.

Read more here https://isobelblackthorn.com/2021/02/04/more-conspiracy-thinking-about-alice-bailey-the-united-nations/

Isobel Blackthorn, PhD, is the author of The Unlikely Occultist: a biographical novel of Alice A. Bailey, and the biography Alice A. Bailey: Life & Legacy.

ALICE BAILEY AND THE NEW WORLD ORDER

by Isobel Blackthorn

From Goodwill to Conspiracy Theory

Alice Bailey devoted thirty years to the fulfilment of her mission to be the conduit for the latest outpouring of the Ageless Wisdom and establish a number of organizations that would help carry that mission of goodwill forward. Back in the 1920s to the late 1940s she couldn’t have known there was a nemesis growing right beside her, one that would culminate in the form of a grand conspiracy theory with her name on it. 

Paul Hanaoka, Unsplash

Perhaps the seeds of the conspiracy theory were sown that day in May 1922 when she established the Lucifer Publishing Company, wisely changing the name to the Lucis Publishing Company in 1924, after she became concerned about public perception of the word “Lucifer”, especially amongst orthodox Christians. Alice Bailey was wise to make the change, but it came too late to avert the outrage of evangelical Christians who, in the 1980s, used the original name of the publishing company as a basis to their argument that Alice Bailey was possessed by the antichrist.

One leading critic writing in the 1980s is Christian activist Constance Cumbey (1944-). In The Hidden Dangers of the Rainbow: The New Age Movement and the Coming Age of Barbarism, Cumbey is at pains to construe Bailey as a vulnerable victim of circumstances, confused, lonely and in despair at the time she encountered Theosophy, and not as the strong-minded intellectual that she was. However, Cumbey still sees Bailey as possessed by the Antichrist. For Cumbey, Bailey’s beliefs in God immanent and reincarnation are ‘the standard lies of the serpent of the Garden of Eden days!’ “Lucifer” might mean light bearer, but to Cumbey the word denotes pure evil.

photo by Pawel Janiak, Unsplash

Everything that Bailey wrote is seen by Cumbey through the lens of Lucifer. The ‘Plan’ of the ‘Spiritual Masters’ is for Cumbey not only unorthodox, but intended ‘to utterly root out people who believe in the Bible and worship God and to completely stamp out Christianity.’ Even the ‘holding the mind steady in the light’ is seen as an act of pure evil.

Unfortunately, Cumbey’s inflammatory scaremongering, while off-putting to non-evangelists, has fed the fears of a receptive audience of believers. Cumbey’s work has been widely discredited by scholars due to its conspiracy theory tone, yet her book and her ideas continue to circulate, aided by Cumbey herself, who has a strong online presence.

The views of Cumbey have become foundational and fuel the fearful hatred of evangelicals and conspiracy theorists far and wide. There are scores and possibly hundreds of websites and blogs dedicated to attacking Alice Bailey, propped up by Cumbey’s book.

Cumbey’s citing of “Lucifer” was picked up in 2001 by leading conspiracy thinker, Jim Marrs in his book Rule by Secrecy, a comprehensive exploration of ‘conspiracy truth’, involving the discovery and interpretation of the various guises of the New World Order plot. Marrs makes only this one reference to Alice Bailey, using it as evidence to support his claim that the core motive of esotericists down the ages is to convert believers to Satanism. If Bailey could have known how far reaching the consequences of this single word choice would be, she would have been kicking herself.

Some of Cumbey’s accusations draw on skewed interpretations of Bailey’s central concepts. Conspiracy thinkers have taken these interpretations and embellished them, creating a veil of disinformation around a body of work intended to foster spiritual enlightenment.

That Bailey’s work has attracted the attention of such thinking is unsurprising. There is much in her work to arouse the suspicions of conspiracy thinkers, including: The existence of a hierarchy of masters overseeing humanity; the notion of a Plan; a call for one world government; and a belief in the value of the United Nations. With these triggers, little wonder Bailey has come under their high beam, since all of these central concepts point to the workings of hidden power. 

Perhaps it doesn’t matter that Bailey’s teachings have become shrouded in conspiracy thinking since those who may benefit from her insights will probably find a point of entry, and despite being regarded as the mother of the New Age movement, the bulk of humanity has never heard of her.

Generally, conspiracy thinkers are concerned with threats to national sovereignty and a desire to re-attain a sense of national and personal identity and power in a rapidly globalising world. It is easy to see how Bailey would be regarding by conspiracy thinkers as an arch enemy, since she advocated a form of one-world government.

The moment Bailey latched onto the United Nations, history was against her. Her hope was that through its auspices, the world would re-orient itself on a better course, and that her works would achieve their intention, to found a new world order.  Ironically, conspiracy theorists believe wholeheartedly that she was successful.

Image by Okan Caliskan from Pixabay 

In her book Cumbey devotes a series of appendices to Bailey’s organisations and ideas, including: World Goodwill, Triangles, the Lucis Trust, the New Group of World Servers and the Unity-in-Diversity Council, an organisation based on an ancient phrase Bailey utilised to convey an important holistic idea. Unity does not confer uniformity and diversity is not fragmentation. In Cumbey’s view, New Age conspirators are enacting the plan for a quasi-Nazi new world order set down by Bailey, largely by infiltrating the United Nations, along with government and business groups. For Cumbey, its adherents are deluded, naïve, and held by mass hypnosis and mind control.

Cumbey quotes from nine volumes of the Bailey canon, with an emphasis on The Externalisation of the Hierarchy:

‘These teachings omitted little or nothing. They ranged from the attitude of the Hierarchy towards the Jews (negative) through dietary advice. Step by step they plotted the coming “New Age”, with instructions for the institution of the necessary New World Order through the use of identifying rainbows. Plans for religious war, forced initiations, theology for the New World Religion, disarmament campaign, and elimination or sealing away of obstinate religious orthodoxies—all were covered extensively in the Alice Bailey writings.’

Constance Cumbey, The Hidden Dangers of the Rainbow, p51.

In Cumbey’s language, Bailey adherents have followed her teachings ‘to the letter,’ the New Age utopia of Findhorn was meant to ‘anchor The Plan,’ and many followers have ‘infiltrated’ the United Nations. Having pre-determined that everything the New Age and its theosophical underpinnings stand for is coming out of that evil space, Cumbey has no choice but to condemn notions of world peace and unity, sharing and brotherly love.

Anti-Bailey conspiracy theorists tend to equate Bailey’s version of a new world order with globalisation as we know it today. In the following quote, Bailey makes an important distinction between materialism and spirituality as two pathways towards a new global world order.

‘Arguing as one ever must from the universal to the particular, it is essential that humanity relates its own mechanism to the greater mechanism through which the planetary Life functions and views his soul as an infinitesimal part of the world soul. It is necessary for him, therefore, to relate…his soul to his personality, viewing both as aspects and integral parts of the human family. This will be increasingly the case. This process is beginning to demonstrate in the steadily expanding group, national and racial consciousness which humanity is today demonstrating – a consciousness which shows as a spiritual inclusiveness or as an abnormal and wicked attempt (from the standpoint of the soul) to fuse and blend all nations into a world order, based on material issues and dominated by a material vision.’

Alice Bailey, Esoteric Astrology p. 519.

It should be clear from the quote that Alice Bailey desired the antithesis of the very path Cumbey accuses her of advocating. Constance Cumbey is just one of Alice Bailey’s detractors. That her view has been amplified in the conspiracy theory milieu is unsurprising, yet there are few voices countering the perspective.

Read more here https://isobelblackthorn.com/2021/01/27/new-world-order-and-alice-bailey-whats-the-evidence/

Isobel Blackthorn, PhD, is the author of The Unlikely Occultist: a biographical novel of Alice A. Bailey and the biography Alice A. Bailey: Life & Legacy.

New Release: Alice Bailey Biography

I’m delighted to announce the forthcoming full biography of Alice Bailey, to be released on Wesak 7 May 2020 thanks to my obliging publisher.
(Please note, this version of the biography is no longer for sale. A new edition is due to be published on 5 August 2020 by Shooting Star Press)

Here’s the new cover:

I have created a dedicated Facebook group for those who want to follow the story of this biography and Alice Bailey more closely.  https://www.facebook.com/groups/394500304830614/)
And here is the book page on my website – https://isobelblackthorn.com/alice-a-bailey-life-and-legacy/

ABOUT ALICE A. BAILEY: LIFE AND LEGACY

From tragic beginnings as an aristocratic orphan to becoming the mother of the New Age spiritual movement, Alice A. Bailey is one of the modern era’s most misunderstood occult figures.

Bailey’s journey is a story of faith, from orthodox Christian beginnings, through a protracted spiritual crisis, to a newfound belief in Theosophy. A mystic and a seeker, a founder of global spiritual organizations, and a surmounter of adversity, Bailey’s past is rife with injustices, myths, and misconceptions – including that she was an anti-Semite and a racist with a dark agenda.

With scandals and controversies laid bare, Bailey’s extraordinary life is revealed as a powerful, remarkable legacy.

Some background on the creation of this book

I say this is my life’s work and it really is. I was first urged to compose a biography back in 2007, a year after I was awarded my doctoral thesis at the University of Western Sydney for my comprehensive study of the Bailey books, when I scored a job with a high-powered literary agent representing Nobel prize winners and prime ministers and the like. Back in 2016, the now retired agent wrote me a rather exasperated email in response to mine saying “Isobel, I just don’t know why you won’t write a biography of Alice Bailey.” Sometimes you just have to do what you’re told. I ‘obeyed’, but the manuscript I produced lacked the sort of detail that makes for a good biography. So I transformed what I had into The Unlikely Occultist: a biographical novel of Alice A Bailey.

As a result of that book, which serves now as a companion book to the biography, a door opened. The vital element that was missing until we met was trust. Suddenly, what seemed an impossible if essential task was made possible because of that trust.

There are so many I owe my gratitude to in the creation of this work, those who have given vital resource material willingly and bravely so that certain key moments in the story of the Bailey community post-1949 could be told. Photos have been provided, the Lucis Trust, the Agni Yoga Society and the School for Esoteric Studies provided their assistance, and a number of key individuals with certain specialisms read over chapters to make sure I had things sitting right and had not omitted anything vital. Thank you! I have mentioned you all in my acknowledgements.
I am sure more detail will arise, oversights come to light and revisions will be made – I have a very flexible publisher who will facilitate this – but for now, the moment has come and this book will be in the world sitting alongside biographies of HPB and the Roerichs and Steiner and Jung…
In the end I am left with one essential thought about Alice Bailey. She was her whole life a spiritual activist and it is that activism that so inspires me and so many others. My life has been touched and shaped by Alice and DK for many decades. What an honour now this moment is! LLP

Two superb reviews of The Unlikely Occultist: A biographical novel of Alice A. Bailey

The Unlikely Occultist

When I wrote The Unlikely Occultist I was more than a little apprehensive. How would a biographical novel of Theosophist Alice A. Bailey be received, both by those in the esoteric community and others unfamiliar with the terrain? Would my book be rejected and me along with it? Would general readers pass over this book in favour of another?

Relief washed through me as first one, then another reader let me know how much they loved the story I wove out of Alice Bailey’s life.

Then two reviews arrived in my inbox on two consecutive days. The first, by Swedish scholar Hakan Blomqvist is especially prized.

“It is fascinating to follow how Isobel portrays the mindset and moral attitude of Alice Bailey. Not an easy undertaking as the scenes and anecdotes presented may create new myths around a woman already a favourite among conspiracy advocates. Reality and fiction becomes blurred…Although The Unlikely Occultist can be considered as a defense or apology for Alice Bailey and esotericism, Isobel Blackthorn is no naive devotee…I highly recommend The Unlikely Occultist. I found it intensely captivating and enchanting. This work can actually function as an introduction to studies in the Esoteric Tradition and may even inspire a minor renaissance for Alice Bailey. Esotericists will be delighted by this biographical novel and if you are a librarian or archivist you will just love it.”  Hakan Blomqvist

The second review is from the Historical Novels Society and appears in the May 2019 issue of their magazine.

“Blackthorn’s book offers a fascinating portrait of a woman dismissed by mainstream thinkers and religions, a woman whose current obscurity is all the more poignant considering the grandeur of her ambitions and her hopes for a healed world.” – Misty Urban 

And that is exactly what I set out to achieve. I wanted to usher Alice Bailey back into the mainstream and afford her some dignity.

You can find out more about The Unlikely Occultist here

Alice Bailey featured in New Dawn magazine

Alice Bailey

When I contacted New Dawn magazine requesting they review The Unlikely Occultist, my biographical novel of Alice A. Bailey, I was anticipating the usual rejection or no-reply. Instead, I received a pleasing email from the editors inviting me to compose a feature piece on Alice Bailey. I embraced the opportunity.

The Unlikely Occultist

Thanks to the talented team at New Dawn, the result is a beautifully laid out and presented feature piece on a woman who rarely gets an airing beyond her own followers. It is a joy to see my brief overview of Alice Bailey treated in this fashion, but I have received no special treatment. The whole magazine is just lovely!

New Dawn magazine

https://www.newdawnmagazine.com/product/new-dawn-special-issue-vol-13-no-2

For too long Alice Bailey has been either maligned or ignored and I think it is time the world knew just how important her body of work and her life’s mission are, influencing healing modalities, psychology, education, the ongoing campaign for world peace and the spiritual ethos at the United Nations. Through New Dawn, more will hear about her, or perhaps reconsider who she was and what she was about. For anyone wanting to know more about The Unlikely Occultist, check some reviews https://isobelblackthorn.com/the-unlikely-occultist-reviews/ or  click this link viewbook.at/Occultist