How a Tale From The Life of Apollonius of
Tyana May Illustrate the Destiny of the
Carlos Cardoso Aveline
Helena P. Blavatsky - the main founder of the modern theosophical movement - made an interesting prophecy with regard to the Catholic Church. The prophecy was also a wish, a hope - perhaps a vow.
While discussing the relation of esoteric philosophy to Western churches, H.P.B. wrote, in 1888:
“A day will come when Oriental Esotericism will render the same service to Christian Europe as Apollonius of Tyana rendered at
to his disciple Menippus. The golden wand will be stretched out towards the Church of Rome, and the ghoul which has vampirized the civilized peoples since Corinth will resume its spectral , demoniacal form of incubus and succubus. So may it be! Constantine Om mani padme hum! H.P. Blavatsky.” 
A forceful image, indeed, regarding the future of Catholicism. And perhaps a commitment to be considered and acted upon in the right time by the “Eastern” sector of the esoteric movement. In a few words, H.P.B. said much. Yet, the issue is rather mysterious and complex and the “prophecy” gives only a hint. What else, then, could one know about the facts mentioned by H.P.B.?
episode to which Mrs. Blavatsky refers is narrated in the Book IV, item XXV of “The Life of Apollonius of Tyana”, by Philostratus. Corinth
Menippus was a Lycian of twenty-five years of age.
Philostratus writes that he “was supposed by most people to be loved by a foreign woman, who was good-looking and extremely dainty, and said that she was rich; although she was really, as it turned out, none of these things, but was only so in semblance.”
Referring to Menippus, Philostratus goes on:
“For as he was walking all alone along the roads towards Cenchreae, he met with an apparition, and it was a woman who clasped his hand and declared that she had been long in love with him, and that she was a Phoenician woman and lived in a suburb of Corinth, and she mentioned the name of the particular suburb, and said: ‘When you reach the place this evening, you will hear my voice as I sing to you, and you shall have wine such as you never before drank, and there will be no rival to disturb you; and we two beautiful beings will live together’. The youth consented to this, for although he was in general a strenuous philosopher, he was nevertheless susceptible to the tender passion; and he visited her in the evening, and for the future constantly sought her company as his darling, for he did not yet realise that she was a mere apparition.”
The narrative proceeds:
“Then Apollonius looked over Menippus as a sculptor would do, and he sketched an outline of the youth and examined him, and having examined his foibles, he said: ‘You are a fine youth and are hunted by fine women, but in this case you are cherishing a serpent, and a serpent cherishes you’. And when Menippus expressed his surprise, he added: ‘For this lady is of a kind you cannot marry. Why should you? Do you think that she loves you?’ ‘Indeed I do’, said the youth, ‘since she behaves as if she loves me.’ ‘And would you then marry her?’, said Apollonius. ‘Why, yes, for it would be delightful to marry a woman who loves you.’ Thereupon Apollonius asked when the wedding was to be. ‘Perhaps tomorrow’, said the other, ‘for it brooks no delay.’ Apollonius therefore waited for the occasion of the wedding breakfast, and then, presenting himself before the guests who had just arrived, he said: ‘Where is the dainty lady at whose instance ye are come?’ ‘Here she is’, replied Menippus, and at the same moment he rose slightly from his seat, blushing. ‘And to which of you belong the silver and gold and all the rest of the decorations of the banqueting hall?’ ‘To the lady, replied the youth, ‘for this is all I have of my own’, pointing to the philosopher’s cloak which he wore.”
Philostratus concludes his report thus:
“And Apollonius said: ‘Have you heard of the gardens of Tantalus, how they exist and yet do not exist?’ ‘Yes’, they answered, ‘in the poems of Homer, for we certainly never went down to Hades’. ‘As such’, replied Apollonius, you must regard this adornement, for it is not reality but the semblance of reality. And that you may realise the truth of what I say, this fine bride is one of the vampires, that is to say of those beings whom the many regard as lamias and hobgoblins. These beings fall in love, and they are devoted to the delights of Aphrodite, but especially to the flesh of human beings, and they decoy with such delights those whom they mean to devour in their feasts.’ And the lady said: ‘Cease your ill-omened talk and begone’; and she pretended to be disgusted at what she heard, and no doubt she was inclined to rail at philosophers and say that they always talked nonsense. When, however, the goblets of gold and the show of silver were proved as light as air and all fluttered away out of their sight, while the wine bearers and the cooks and all the retinue of servants vanished before the rebukes of Apollonius, the phantom pretended to weep, and prayed him not to torture her nor to compel her to confess what she really was. But Apollonius insisted and would not let her off, and then she admitted that she was a vampire, and was fattening up Menippus with pleasure before devouring his body , for it was her habit to feed upon young and beautiful bodies, because their blood is pure and strong.” 
This is the story as told by Philostratus.
According to Helena Blavatsky, the “beautiful” Church of Rome is like the “lady” in this story; and Eastern esotericism must play the role of Apollonius. The
Vatican is “the ghoul which has vampirized the civilized peoples since ”. In the right occasion it “will resume its spectral, demoniacal form of incubus and succubus.” Constantine
It is also worthwhile to meditate upon the fact that H.P.B. ends her “prophecy” with strong words and a meaningful, powerful Eastern mantra:
“So may it be!
Om mani padme hum!”
 “Collected Writings”, Helena P. Blavatsky, Theosophical Publishing House,
, volume IX, p. 387, footnote. Adyar, India
 “The Life of Apollonius of Tyana”, Flavius Philostratus, With an English Translation by F.C. Conybeare, in two volumes, Harvard University Press, MCMXLVIII, The Loeb Classical Library. Printed in
. See volume I, Book IV, pp. 403-409. Great Britain