RE: Theosophy - Religion and Authority SCOPE
Oct 19, 2005 03:10 AM
by W.Dallas TenBroeck
Oct 18 '05
Re: RE: Theosophy - Religion and Authority -- SCOPE
Agreed with appeal for honesty.
Word values and underlying meanings are often at variance. Time wasters!
Argument is not philosophy -- we all don't give identical emphasis to words
I try to adhere to HPB and Master's teachings (and efface my own wording
when possible) because I have found them to be logical, consistent and
reasonable. But I would not insist on others doing the same. That's why I
place value on quoting the old sayings and explanations.
Why should there NOT be a Lodge of immortal men who seek to show a way that
they have lived and tested, of methods of thought and living that enable us
to shed dissimulation and hypocrisy?
If they claim that in past eras they were instrumental in repeatedly stating
reforms, then, is not the mere 130 years that THEOSOPHY has been
re-presented, enough evidence to show how this occurs in our own life-time?
To keep searching testing and experimenting is the life of the system, I
Is it worth adopting and using as a test-stone?
What is the leap from our present way of living to one of strict morality ?
We may speak of it and offer reasons, but cannot expect all to agree.
If there is a coalescing of ideas and correlation of thinking it shows a
valuable and living progress, does it not?
Can we take the fundamental ideas of THEOSOPHY [ universality, immortality,
spirit, emotion/passion/desire, and a material "form" as co-evolving] --
and compare them with all the rest of the fundamentals of other, both old
and new, philosophies and religions? And while we are at it, sciences?
Seems to me the SECRET DOCTRINE offers enough to think over for quite a
time. Its scope alone offers a number of fields of study, but, to me, they
also are able to show correlations and inter-relations.
No one is ever totally "right." But we can all try to assist in
co-discovery, and co-verification.
From: Gerald Schueler [mailto:email@example.com]
Sent: Saturday, October 15, 2005 10:46 AM
To: Theosophy Study List
Subject: Theosophy - Religion and Authoirty
DT>THEOSOPHY is neither a cult, nor a sect, nor a "religion." It invites no
"authority" and certainly no "faithful" or 'blind believers.">
Dal, what you sasy here is the manner in which the original TS was set up,
and the intention of HPB. However, since her death things have gone
downhill. Some thoughts:
I cannot agree with the claim about not being a religion because I see
Theosophical doctrines parotted as religious doctine throughout most of the
Theosophical communitiy today. I see quotes thrown around that are supposed
to substantiate a certain idea, as if they were holy writ. Often those
quotes mean entirely different ideas to me, but they are truth to the
quoters. I see "original writings" being used as if these were sacred
texts. I see prayers been spoken, and I see personifications being adored
and I see blessings being asked and punishments/rewards being expected.
What is the difference between a God's infinite love and care, and a karma
that guides every blade of grass? What difference between an omniscient God
and an omniscient Karma? What difference is there between going to heaven
and getting a better future life? I see so many similarities, that I
cannot help but think that HPB's Theosophy is now a religion, and calling
it the "wisdom religion" just makes things worse.
Only HPB herself can say that Theosophy offers no authorities. Her
followers, on the other hand, having set her up as an authority herself,
along with Judge, cannot make such a claim without being hypocritical. Many
years ago I was Chrisitan Scientist. Chrisitan Science has a set of
doctrinal teachings, just like any other religion, and yet they teach that
they have no dogmas. They are very proud of the fact that they have no
dogmas. So, I grew up with teachings and no dogmas. Now, as a teen I
perceived this as hypocracy within Chrisitan Science, and I perceive it as
hypocracy now within Theosophy. We cannot have doctrinal teachings that we
believe to be true and claim no dogmas without being hypocritical.
HPB was able to claim no dogmas because she invited people to dispute her
teachings and to dissect them and debate them. She well knew that they are
not truth itself but an exoteric expression or interpretation of truth, and
as such could be improved by the sharing of ideas in a friendly and
brotherly atmosphere. Her Theosophy is a finger pointing to the Esoteric
Tradition. Therefore, her Theosophy is not truth itself, and therefore not
a set of dogmas. But since her death, things have changed.
<<Divine wisdom would seem to be divine wisdom
and it is not seen where any individual or wriitten word or else
holds claim and authority over it. It is as it is. It would also seem
'that there are many avenues to divine wisdom.
While this kind of statement sounds good, and is in fact true, it comes
across as being hypocritical to me because it is not the way Theosophy is
functioning today. Today no one knows what "divine wisdom" is. Today
Theosophists mistake the literal written word as divine wisdom. Those few
who figured it out have left Theosophy, and yes I would incliude JK here.
I agree that "there are many avenues to divine wisdom." But which
Theosophists have taken a Path that will lead them there? The
If a Theosophist doesn't have a clue about divine wisdom, then she will
accept the "original writings" as biblical and take them as literal truth,
which means dogmas. And because HPB herself says that Theosophy has no
dogmas, he will jump on this to claim dogma-less religious doctrines. Doing
so is hypocritcal, but it is honestly done anyway out of ignorance by using
quotes from HPB that are not understood.
It is a psychological fact that if we don't have personal experience in an
area, then we have to rely on the authority of those who have such
expertise. And we do so all the time, and Theosophy is no different because
we Theosophists are still human beings after all. So we have two and only
two choices here: We can (1) gain direct experience of the globes and
planes, and learn the Esoteric Tradition directly from Adepts embodied or
disembodied, or we can (2) accept HPB and Judge as authorities and take
what they have written as gospel and so turn models and pointing fingers
into dogmas Now, because Theosophists are afraid of (1), they are left
with (2). This is OK in itself, but please lets all be honest here and lets
not establish HPB and Judge as authorities while claiming that we have none
and lets not accept the original writings as truth while claiming no
All I am asking for is is honesty,
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