RE: Theos-World different editions of THE SECRET DOCTRINE
May 23, 2001 05:23 PM
Wednesday, May 23, 2001
Dear Tony and Eldon:
I think this is an excellent way of perceiving the differences
and also of realizing how we have contacted one or another of the
various Theosophical "streams."
The main focus we agree to is the way in which it was originally
recorded. Alterations, view-points, changes, etc.. as a result
of one or more student's work can either help or delay our
individual advance. The effort to trace the differences only has
value when anyone challenges a statement or a "clarification."
H.P.B. is not here (physically) to tell us who is right and
wrong. [ Have you ever read the chapter in Dostoevsky's THE
BROTHERS KARAMAZOV, where Alyosha narrates a fictional visit by
Christ to Seville at the conclusion of an Auto-da-Fe ? " The
Grand Inquisitor ?" -- the attitude of the Grand Inquisitor is
what I am thinking of. ]
I would say we have to make our own links with H.P.B. and with
Theosophy -- which is not a rigid affair and an orthodoxy -- as
it merely offers for our consideration aspects of the history of
the past of our earth and humanity that our academies have
by-passed, or have so far had no material clues to.
If we reject the concept of the immortality of the MONAD and the
perfectibility of the Human Soul -- we will reject the concept of
the Great Lodge of Adepts and their longevity and records ( see
S.D. I 272-3; ISIS UNVEILED II 98-103 )
A grasp of meaning will always be dual, possibly triple: 1.
That of the words (the EYE DOCTRINE); and 2. That of the
altruist and the Wise doer of good (the HEART DOCTRINE) -- and,
possibly 3. the links between the two "doctrines." which from
the physical (or EYE point of view) is literalness -- those
links are to my way of thinking, the LAWS which are inherent and
ineradicable in the established living UNIVERSE (including our
Earth, mankind and every life-atom (monad) anywhere. This will
include the many codes and blinds that are inherent to the
fragments of ancient EYE Doctrines we have -- numerology,
All true students seek for these.
If we do this for OURSELVES alone, we will still err with a
"higher selfishness." But if we perform all tasks as though they
were for the benefit of others we secure the benefit, and also
defuse it elsewhere where our brothers and sisters are helped.
If we consider that we have probably been engaged in previous
incarnations with Theosophy as then presented, we can hope that
our present work will hasten our return into an incarnation in
the future which will enable us to resume our self-selected
It is most probable that our work today will become the teaching
we will encounter in the future. We alone, here and now, can
make it easier or more difficult for ourselves. We are
generating today the causes that will make for a docile and
attentive "personality" in the future, or one that has set up
restrictions and obstacles for itself.
As I see it, if we universalize ourself and make it more
impersonal, and devote it to the service of others by providing
them with the knowledge we can, we will be helping ourselves in
the future to do more and better work.
I have often thought how fortunate we are to have incarnated in
the direct stream of Theosophy so close to the time when it is
gathered and re-promulgated in such profusion as now. We have
great opportunities and great responsibilities.
From: Tony [mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org]
Sent: Wednesday, May 23, 2001 5:14 AM
Subject: RE: Theos-World different editions of THE SECRET
Dear Eldon, Dallas, and Peter:
Thanks Eldon for the way you have summed things up.
To varying degrees we are all under the influence of conditioning
prejudice, we all see it through are own filter, but isn't
Theosophy in part
about developing Discrimination?
Boris reproduced the secret doctrine how HE saw it... he was a
slave to his
own conditioning and prejudices (aren't we all), which is very
using the power of discrimination, which is essentially of the
Studying the S.D. is Janna Yoga ... developing the way we think,
intuition, and developing the power to discriminate. The actual
more important than getting to the actual meaning.
Isn't it best that we make our choices, as we have done, about
which S.D. we
prefer to study, and then get on with that? We are all trying
the best we
can. Comparing the different editions is so dull, when compared
on with what we perceive Janna Yoga to be.
Let us try and be sure that our choice of S.D. is not through
conditioning, but rather one of discrimination.
From: Eldon B Tucker [mailto:email@example.com]
Sent: 22 May 2001 3:01 pm
Subject: Theos-World different editions of THE SECRET DOCTRINE
Dallas, Peter, and Tony:
It seems clear from the lines that the discussions have gone
that we are taking different positions on how to put the
theosophical literature to best use.
Should a theosophical FAQ be put together at some point,
a description of the different editions of THE SECRET
DOCTRINE, and the reasons for each edition, might be included.
The emphasis of the newer edition is, as I see it, on
improved accuracy, readability, and access to the materials.
The value of the facsimile edition would be to assure the
reader that no additional errors had been introduced in the
process of editing the book, although existing errors and
limitations would also remain.
A balanced comparison of the editions would impartially
weigh the good with the bad, considering improved readability
and accuracy with possible error. It is not made by picking
a few editorial changes that seem the most objectionable
and arguing over them. If a change is clearly in error,
it should be passed on, so that it can be corrected in a
future printing of the book.
I think that we've all become somewhat conditioned by the
various theosophical groups that we've been trained in, and
have a tendency to mirror the official positions of those
groups without really thinking about what we might be saying.
In the future, an html edition of the book might be useful.
This would go beyond just having the materials on web pages,
like Theosophical University Press has. It would include
extensive crosslinks and ties to supplemental materials.
Setting up such a text also would involve editorial
manipulation of the raw text of the book, perhaps the dropping
of accent marks, and the standardization of spellings. (This
would be to facilitate searching by keyword, etc.) With
this edition, as well as Boris's edition, the work would be
done with the best interest of the readers in mind.
Perhaps at some point in the future, we might have a
combination of the two approaches. There might be a
computerized, edited, readable, hyperlinked version of
each book or article, combined with a scanned image of
the original page of print that the text came from.
This would be useful for such books as THE MAHATMA LETTERS,
for HPB's magazine articles (showing a scan of the original
pages from the magazines that the originally appeared in),
and for books like THE SECRET DOCTRINE, showing original
handwritten manuscript whenever possible, or including
links to more than one draft of the materials, where
Theosophy is a living tradition. It's kept alive by
people whom learn it and pass on their interest and
enthusiasm to future generations. The printed word is
a tool to assist with the process, as a study aid, but
is not the Wisdom itself.
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