The double title given to the book is not meant to imply that Theosophy and New Thought are approximately identical. The inclusion of the two in a single volume is rather a matter of convenience than of logical classification. We recognize that, while they have distinct points of similarity, they also exhibit quite apparent contrasts in spirit and content. In particular the intemperate speculation and headlong Orientalism of Theosophy are but partially reflected in New Thought. Both, however, make very high claims, and this fact justifies the subjecting of them to close scrutiny.
The type of Theosophy which is here examined is of very recent date. Whatever may be the age of some of its ingredients, it first began to be compomided in 1875. In the fall of that year the Theosophical Society was started in New York city. The most efficient agent in its origination was a Russian woman whose maiden name was Helena Petrovna Hahn, but who, from the name of N. B. Blavatsky, her first and only legal husband whom she left after a three months' trial -is known as Madame Blavatsky.