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When the personal is political

Sep 01, 2004 02:28 PM
by kpauljohnson

--- In, "Erica Letzerich" <eletzerich@y...>
This is a hasty generalization a deductive fallacy. 
Hi again Erica,

My first experience of Theosophical cyberspace was more than ten years
ago. Participants were criticizing CWL's doctrines and behavior on
theos-l in 1993-94, and other participants (invariably Adyar members)
were attacking them as spiritually wrong for doing so. The same thing
has occurred regularly ever since. So when I see it today and say
it's a typical reaction based on 10 years of observation of
Theosophical cyberspace, that's "hasty" only if one takes the larger
manvantaric picture. Not that there's anything wrong with that!
> You do not provide a good argument in your call for discussing the 
> founders, in your analogy of sexual abuse in the family.

I wasn't calling for it but trying to explain why attempts are
invariably made to shut down such discussions.

> Nobody is discussing about hiding information, denying it or keeping
it veiled. 
That seems to be precisely what Perry, Steve, Daniel, Gregory, and I
have been discussing.

> My call was direct and simple a call to the ideals that the T.S. 
> represent in the world. 
> Or when you, Dr. Tillet (or whoever else you mentioned in your 
> previous e-mail) joined the T.S. it was with the aim to study and 
> discuss the personal life of T.S. fellows? 
No, but neither was it with the aim of belonging to a group that is
pathologically avoidant of basic facts about its own history.
I must take issue with your relegation of CWL's behavior to the realm
of "personal life." What HPB did or didn't do in her youth does
indeed fall into that category; while the parentage of Yuri is an
interesting puzzle it's not relevant to her role as a Theosophical
teacher. But CWL's sexual proclivities weren't simply "his private
life;" he repeatedly used his role as a Theosophical leader to obtain
access to victims and threw the TS into uproars caused by his 
behavior. Moreover, his long shadow still has a profound effect on
the life of the TS. Any effort to understand why things are the way
they are in the Adyar TS leads right back to CWL and his "personal
life." Hence, it's a Theosophical issue.

> The T.S. hold three very clear objects and in none is stated to 
> investigate the personal lives of theosophists or to confirm if 
> Blavatsky was wearing a pink or red underwear.
The Adyar TS may claim to the right to stifle allegedly inappropriate
historical discussions among its members-- hence to declare certain
topics off limits in its publications or any online discussion fora it
controls. In a mixed group including non-Theosophists and non-Adyar
Theosophists, the Adyar TS members cannot *control* historical
discussion-- but sure can *disrupt* it with personal condemnation of
those trying to carry on such discussion. 

I think it would be more effective to actually start new discussion
threads on topics one considers preferable, as opposed to telling
others their interests are inappropriate or unworthy of discussion. 
The latter course only adds fuel to the fire, because people don't
like attempts to stifle them.



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