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RE: Theosophy World - Some additional comments on "objects of TS and heretics."

Nov 02, 2000 02:03 PM
by Dallas Tenbroeck

Nov 3 2000

Dear Katinka:

Your comments have made me think, and then I recalled that HPB
had something to say on this in the opening chapters of THE KEY
TO THEOSOPHY, so I opened the book and began looking. May I
offer some of that which I found?

In the KEY TO THEOSOPHY from p. 16 on we can read exactly what
the meaning of THEOSOPHY and the Theosophical Society, its
"vehicle," mean. On p. 39 the original OBJECTS of the TS are
described and spoken of by her.

Many mistake the TS and belonging to it (membership) as
constituting themselves, or, being "theosophists." I would say
that if one knows what Theosophy is, then it does not matter if
one belongs (membership) to one TS or another, or to none.

HPB wrote: "The Society is a PHILANTHROPIC and SCIENTIFIC body
for the propagation of the idea of brotherhood on practical
instead of theoretical lines." (emphasis mine)....every member
must be a philanthropist, or a scholar, a searcher into Aryan and
other old literature, or a psychic student....he has to help, if
he can, in carrying out at least one of the objects of the
programme. Otherwise he has no reason for becoming a
"Fellow."..."Theosophist is, who Theosophy does." KEY p. 19-20

Mat we consider that if one belongs to any society or
organization, or creed or religion one automatically excludes the
rest of humanity and the world? Division makes for a failure in
brotherhood. Was it not for this reason that the TS established
brotherhood and tolerance as a first OBJECT? Thus doing away
with separateness and exclusiveness of any kind? "We cull the
good that is found in each (religion)" KEY p. 19.

The TS (Theosophical Society) needs THEOSOPHY.

On p. 18 KEY we find "These doctrines (THEOSOPHY) belong
exclusively to no religion, and are confined to no society or
time. They are the birthright of every human soul...Its creed is
Loyalty to Truth, and its ritual 'To honour every truth by use."
KEY p. 18.

Those who subscribe to the "Objects" of the TS become its
members. It is their responsibility to adopt what they can into
practice of the ethics and the consequent practice of BROTHERHOOD
which those Objects speak of.(see p. 39 of the KEY) [p. 18:
"The Society was organized on this one principle, the essential
Brotherhood of Man..."]

THEOSOPHY does not need the organization (or "form") named
"Theosophical Society.

One of the main purposes of the TS when formed was that it
included all those who practice truth in daily life and are
actively brothers (without reservations) to all others. Is that
not enough? The 2nd and 3rd objects serve to focus attention on
all that was not known by science, philosophy, psychology and
religion in HPB's time. Most of those aspects remain to be
researched without prejudice -- much of which (prejudice in
various areas) continues to this day.

I think these are sufficiently broad parameters to encourage
anyone to associate themselves with any truly
theosophy-practicing association.

Does not the original meaning of the word "heretic" means
"questioner?" That is, one who asks if the interpretation is
correct? [from ancient Latin, Greek and French: "hairein" : to
take, choose] In other words the opinion of one who rejects
authority and dogma. And are not all theosophists those who
study and delve to seek the ORIGINAL MEANINGS ? Who is to
require us to follow blindly anything? What do we have minds and
our sense of independence for? Is not God-wisdom, and
God-purpose everywhere, and are not inquiries a portion of the
Universal urge to become WISE? Who can say that anyone's urge to
inquire is not God-given?

Best wishes,

D. T. B.

-----Original Message-----
From: Katinka Hesselink []
Sent: Thursday, November 02, 2000 9:45 AM
To: Theosophy Study List
Subject: theosophy world - objects of TS and heretics.

This is a reaction to part of Eldon Tucker's article on a
conference of
the Pasadena TS, in the November Theosophy World. I apologize if
I am too
strong (and perhaps heretic ;-) )here. Eldon wrote among other

>The objects of the Theosophical Society (Pasadena)are:

>* To diffuse among men a knowledge of the laws inherent in the
>* To promulgate the knowledge of the essential unity of all that
is, and to demonstrate that this unity is fundamental in
>* To form an active brotherhood among men,
>* To study ancient and modern religion, science, and philosophy,
>* To investigate the powers innate in man.

>It is important to listen to the views of others. It is ok for
different organizations and expressions of Theosophy to exist in
the world. There can be lodges and groups with their own
specialties. Someone asked if it is possible that there could be
a theosophical heretic. A member joked -- Can we be drummed out
for our beliefs? While this might be possible of any group, a
better question might be: Where are we at home in doing our
theosophical work? We can tell, if we listen within, if we are in
the right place and doing the right work or not. If we are out
of place, it is our karma that we move elsewhere, seeking out our
homecircle. It is best that we observe and act on our inner
feelings, rather that waiting for life to act for us -- from
without -- making us go places and do things that we should have
realized were right and done under our own initiative!>

Now, this had me puzzled a bit. First of all it was interesting
to read
the TS-Pasadena objects. I am not sure I read them before this,
out of negligence, but there it is. Then the idea of a
heretic* played in my mind. At first it sounded oke for there to
be people
for whom the TS is not the right place to fulfill their Dharma.
Yes, I can
imagine that, said my mind. But then I started thinking some
more, and
remembering what HPB writes on the subject
-> it seems to me that the only person who can be expelled for
ideas, if we take HPB seriously (which, or so I've heard, the
does) is the person who does not believe in brotherhood, or does
respect persons whose ideas are different from their own, or
tries to
convert people to their ideas.

I've read most of what HPB has written, and it seems to me that
her idea
about the TS was that it was a place where people of different
creeds and philosophies could gather, and share their ideas and
learn from
each other. In fact, I read her to say that that is precisely
what the
term brotherhood means to her. In this sense the TS-Adyar objects
are more
explicit then the above, because there it says "a brotherhood of
without distinction of race, sex, creed, caste or colour" (or
like that). In these objects it is quite clear that someone's
(creed) are not grounds for expulsion - even if (perhaps) it is
persons dharma to ALSO work in other places. HPB seems to have
any spiritualist into the TS, even when they did not agree with
what she
wrote. Personally, but I do not have the quotes to ground this
with, I
think that diversity of thought is what makes us learn. Only when
there is
a difference of opinion are we forced to take a look at what our
are based on. Heretics are those people who are original enough
to go
beyond what most people (or most theosophists) think and come to
conclusions. I think it would be (and is, when it happens) very
unwise if
people who think so called heretic thoughts were expelled from
the TS, any
TS. And those who do think it wise, really should read HPB a bit
starting with (this comes to mind) Volume III of the Collected
If that is not feasable, perhaps my HPB quotes on the subject
will be

(then click theosophy and theosophists)

with love,
katinka hesselink

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