Helios Drive

Vasanta Way, Temple Hill Drive, and Helios Drive recall the days when the Theosophical Society had a colony in these hills. (See also: Alcyona Drive.)There’s a lot to unpack about Theosophy, but in short, it’s a New Agey pseudo-religion – a benign cult, if you will – founded in New York City in 1875 by Helena P. Blavatsky (1831-1891), a Russian expat inspired by Eastern religions and mysticism. After her death, the society was taken over by Englishwoman Annie Besant (1847-1933); it was brought to Hollywood in 1912 by Albert Powell Warrington, who ran its North American branch. He and his fellow disciples bought 10 acres of these hills and established the utopian “Krotona Institute” here. Temple Hill, Vasanta, and Helios were all named in 1914 when Theosophist Henry Hotchener bought 5 additional acres for the colony. Temple Hill refers to the colony’s “Temple of the Rosy Cross”, now an apartment building; Vasanta, Sanskrit for “spring”, alludes to Annie Besant’s surname; Helios, the sun god, factors into Theosophical teachings. A.P. Warrington moved Krotona to Ojai in 1924 but several of its houses remain.