The Journal of San Diego History
SAN DIEGO HISTORICAL SOCIETY QUARTERLY
Winter 1997, Volume 43, Number 1
Richard W. Crawford, Editor
Katherine Tingley (1847-1929), founder of the Point Loma Universal Brotherhood and Theosophical Society Homestead.
The Homestead (left) and Temple (right), the main buildings at Point Loma. Visible from miles around, the Homestead had an aquamarine dome and the Temple, amethyst.
The Amphitheater at Point Loma, the first open-air Greek theater in the United States, where pageants and dramas were performed.
Point Loma residents and Raja Yoga students performed Greek and Shakespearean dramas in the Amphitheater.
Beginning in 1905, students at the Raja Yoga Academy formed an orchestra and performed weekly concerts. Musical activities were the only co-educational activities for teenagers in the community.
Raja Yoga students rose early for calisthenics. Note the identical uniforms and perfectly formed lines divided by age and gender. Critics attacked the military strictness.
Raja Yoga students ate together at long tables without speaking; Tingley believed that silence nourished the soul. Critics accused this practice as cruel to the children.
Life for Raja Yoga students was not all rigid discipline; here a class of uniformed young girls reads on the lawn. Children were separated from their parents in group homes segregated by gender.
Temple doors designed by Reginald Machell depicting the apex of human evolution, the ideal male and female.
Reginald Machell’s painting “The Path” was featured on the title page of the point Loma published magazine The Theosophical Path for many years. It depicts the simultaneously powerful and ambiguous images of women and men at Point Loma. Courtesy of the Theosophical Society, Pasadena, CA.