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Re: Theos-World the future of theosophical work

Mar 26, 2000 07:06 PM
by scott holloman

Eldon B Tucker wrote:
> The discussion regarding theosophical officers and compensation
> raise a number of important issues.
> One is that of health care. If someone is working full-time for
> a theosophical group, it would be nice to see that they're provided
> with room and board, health care, and at least a nominal amount of
> spending money, so they can buy clothes, etc.
> In the past, only the wealthy could work as theosophical volunteers,
> since the vast majority of people were struggling to make ends meet,
> to pay the rent and put food on the table, with little time to devote
> to higher pursuits.
> If theosophical groups were only run by the wealthy, I'd expect that
> there would be a bias, a bit of a blind spot in the perception of
> the people doing the work, a danger of the leadership getting disconnected
> from the actual struggles and needs of the common person in society.
> By paying living expenses and health care, taking care of the material
> needs of full-time volunteer staff in a modest way, a theosophical
> group allows the workers the ability to devote their time and energies
> into the Work.
> This type of support in seen in many areas of society. Monks are
> supported by the general populace, in our age so they can pursue
> spiritual interests, in earlier times, because they carried on the
> knowledge of society. In modern times, we support "academic monks"
> in a similar manner. Our society pays the salaries of university
> professors, staff, and researchers, footing most of the bill through
> tax dollars or indirectly through grants.
> I would not want to see my theosophical money spent on someone
> who's a freeloader, not doing any work, or someone not supporting
> something I'd consider genuine Theosophy or helpful to the
> theosophical cause. But if there is a need for certain work and
> it's useful and the people who are supported are both sincere
> and capable in what they're doing -- I'm happy to support them
> as much as I can.
> The typical case of a theosophical volunteer working full-time
> at a theosophical center, I'd suspect, is someone who cares about
> Theosophy and feels they're doing something to make this a better
> world. It's almost certain they're taking a substantial financial
> loss in being there, rather than working at a job paying the
> going rate for their skills. I'm more inclined to feel grateful
> for the work they're doing, the sacrifices they're making, than
> to feel any resentment over the fact that they're receiving any
> form of financial support.
> The talk I've read about non-profit corporations needing to
> make a full disclosure about how their funds are expended might
> be correct from a legal standpoint. But I don't think that the
> money being spent is the real issue.
> The real problem, as I see it, that we're struggling with is
> over the organizational structure of theosophical groups. The
> model of a hierarchical organization with centralized and
> autocratic control is falling into disfavor.
> A more workable model for the future would be more like the
> ULT, with a number of independent theosophical groups, but no
> one in charge. The groups can affiliate with each other as
> they please, and there can be resource centers providing
> assistance to groups as needed, but no one is "the boss" with
> the power to dictate rules or policies to groups.
> The model would be more like that of a "theosophical franchise,"
> where the individual branches are "locally owned," with
> resources and support from within the organization, but the
> local ownership being in charge of what happens.
> Then we come to the question: What do we do from here?
> The answer is: We find a place comfortable for us to work
> and we get to work. If that place is within an existing
> theosophical group, we go there and become productive. If
> there aren't any groups we're happy with, we make a new one
> any way that we like it, and then cooperatively affiliate
> with other theosophical groups and activities where it's
> possible to do so. Why waste time fighting with people or
> groups that want to do things differently, when it's so
> easy to just get to work, start doing things, and move
> forward with new groups and activities that are in total
> accord with what works best for you?
> -- Eldon
> -- THEOSOPHY WORLD -- Theosophical Talk --
> Letters to the Editor, and discussion of theosophical ideas and
> teachings. To subscribe or unsubscribe, send a message consisting of
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       I would agree with Mr. Tucker for I work for a non for profit
org. training the developmentally disabled.The reason I took my job was
primarily to make the world a better place and for perhaps selfishly to
give my life some meaning.I have made much more money in other jobs,but
always felt something was missin;the satisfaction is worth it.I have
also found that since I care so much ,my employer gets alot for their
money.Frankly compared ta other areas of work I'am vastly underpaid,but
I'am rich with reward .Do not doubt though that I could work for free
for I have children and I need benefits.My quality of work is often
dictated by the time allowed to actually DO my work.Volunteers are
wonderful but often result in piecemeal.I would be happy to have a
nominal amount sent to a qualified;passinate individual who could show
results in the pursuit of truth.That lucky devil:)          Sincerely

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