The Theosophical Society held its first meeting on November 17, 1875, in New York City. Imagine, if you will, the religious scene in New York City in 1875. Reincarnation and karma were unheard of, religions like Buddhism and Hinduism were virtually unknown, and “New Age” bookstores had yet to appear. Into the middle of all this, Madame Blavatsky brought her new and revolutionary ideas. Two of the most important ideas she taught were karma and reincarnation. Today, karma and reincarnation are familiar words to most Americans. Not so in 1875. Theosophy takes credit for popularizing the ideas of karma and reincarnation in the western world.