Charles Webster Leadbeater

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Charles Webster Leadbeater in 1914

Charles Webster Leadbeater (16 February 1854 – 1 March 1934) was an influential member of the Theosophical Society, author on occult subjects and co-initiator with J. I. Wedgwood of the Liberal Catholic Church. Originally a priest of the Church of England, his interest in spiritualism caused him to end his affiliation with Anglicanism in favour of the Theosophical Society, where he became an associate of Annie Besant. He became a high-ranking officer of the society, but resigned in 1906 after accusations that he had engaged in sex (mutual masturbation) with teenage boys in his care. With Besant's assistance he was readmitted a few years later. Similar rumours occurred throughout his career, but Leadbeater's talents as a prolific author on occultism kept him an important presence in Theosophy until his death in 1934.

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