Theos-World RE: theos-l: Nov. 08, 1999 SENTIMENTALITY and REASON
Nov 09, 1999 10:11 AM
by W. Dallas TenBroeck
Nov 10th 1999
Dear Kym:, and Katinka:
We seem to be conducting a three party discussion which is most
interesting. Let's continue.
What I mean is that sometimes sentimentality ( non-reasoning)
overwhelms us all. And I mean All, since it is one of the
dominant qualities ( or "principles" -- named KAMA in Hindu
philosophy and Theosophy) .
It is difficult to hold it in control, and when it goes of at
some tangent or another, it drags the "mind" or "reasoning
faculty" with it, usually. But who or what is the "WE" that even
considers "to control, or "not to control?"
One of the peculiarities of the sentimental, and desire nature is
that it does not consider consequences. It desires to enjoy, and
looks forward to continued "enjoyment." In itself this is not
wrong, but, in my esteem it needs to be balanced with
reasonableness, and the necessities of our duties and
responsibilities. I am quite sure (at least in my experience)
that they need guidance and control when they run off in some
exaggerated area or other. I think we all do this, anyway. And
I would add that the addition of the mind-faculty to desire is
that it can look back in MEMORY to the past; and also look
FORWARD in anticipation to some desired FUTURE. Without the mind
offering these faculties the desire nature alone deals only with
the present in a reactive and an instinctual manner. But, one
needs to verify this statement, individually, by introspection.
Next I consider: What is dominant in Man and Woman ? What makes
them unique -- is it not the power to think, to reason, to
anticipate, to remember and to IMAGINE ? "WHAT IF.....? "
Where do we get our idealism from? What is excellence? Is
"Perfection" in any area possible? Where do we secure
Inspiration? What is Genius or Talent in some art or science or
Those unusual faculties need to be reconciled with our usual
endowment with reflective and anticipatory natures.
While I would be one of the first to admit that the intertwining
of the feelings and the mind is in all of us, I would also like
to make sure what they are when separated, and why they are so
mixed when we do our thinking or desiring ? How is it that
psychology makes these distinctions and Theosophy seems to add a
wider dimension to their consideration?
Finally, what power is it in us that enables us to change our
desires and to vary them? How is it that we can perceive areas
of uncertainty ? Where is there some "stability" that makes this
possible, so that we can have a "dialog with ourselves ?" Where
does that Power come from? Is it an attribute of the REAL HUMAN
BEING ? Is it possibly superior even to the Mind ?
Best wishes -- and see if you can help clear up some of my
Sent: Monday, November 08, 1999 10:59 PM
Subject: Re: SENTIMENTALITY
Dallas and Katinka wrote:
>>[Dallas] As I see it, Theosophy is anything but sentimental.
>[Katinka] I agree, all I am trying to say is that to reach
Why is it so important, especially for those in the Western
doctrines to be void of sentimentality and emotion in order for
them to be
taken seriously? Why do many theosophists (some on this list and
write books on theosophy) attempt to make sure that doctrines,
opinions, avoid emotion as much as possible, focus primarily on
objective theory. I can't think of one "enlightened" being,
who wasn't jammed full of emotion and sentimentality - both in
in their doctrines. The emotions displayed by the "enlightened"
to be glossed over, or named "something else," made excuses for,
Does the presence of emotion or sentimentality make something
less valid or
truthful? Does the presence of emotion or sentimentality make
more dangerous? Is emotion or sentimentality a sign of weakness
On the other hand, does objectivity make something more valid or
Does objectivity make something less dangerous? Is an objective
stronger or more knowledgeable?
Main point: Is the objective, or scientific (logical), path more
to Truth and Compassion than subjective, or emotional, path?
Clearly, many theosophists think the objective is the best way,
even "God" is objective, but I fail to see any 'objective proof
reasonings' for those conclusions.
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