Krishnamurti, the Indian boy found by supposed clairvoyant Charles Leadbeater by the Adyar river and chosen as a kind of Messiah figure, was just a teenager when Steiner left (or had to leave) the Theosophical Society. The Krishnamurti affair probably had something to do with Steiner’s increasing conflict with the theosophists, but was hardly the only or main cause; there were other things as well. And by that time, Steiner had a large enough following to be able to create his own independent society; he didn’t need the Theosophical Society anymore. Krishnamurti, however, grew up and received an education (and an indoctrination, one might say) by the theosophists; it was believed that he was destined to become a great world leader. But Leadbeater had perhaps not been as clairvoyant as he imagined himself to be,* because Krishnamurti eventually had enough to the theosophists. In 1929 he dissolved the theosophical order that had been created around his person. That’s about all I know about him. He held a speech, which can be read here.
I do not want to belong to any organization of a spiritual kind, please understand this. I would make use of an organization which would take me to London, for example; this is quite a different kind of organization, merely mechanical, like the post or the telegraph. I would use a motor car or a steamship to travel, these are only physical mechanisms which have nothing whatever to do with spirituality. Again, I maintain that no organization can lead man to spirituality.
The story and the speech are also, I suppose, a testament to the fact that regardless of how much influence you have on an individual growing up, no matter how much you prepare him (or her) for a special role or immerse him in your ideas, the outcome will always be unpredictable; there’s always the chance that the chosen one seizes the opportunity of freedom, that he cares more about that than being worshipped, and that he turns against the path that was carefully laid out for him.
*Or perhaps he was! But not in a way that served the Theosophical Society. Then again, perhaps true clairvoyance would not work for egotistical ends! One might speculate about that…
March 28, 2016: this is a fascinating find, a letter Krishnamurti’s father wrote to Steiner in 1912!