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Re: Theos-World Krishnamurti, theosophy, & the TS

May 12, 2008 05:48 PM
by Cass Silva

Hello Aryel and thanks for your response.
  My views are that the Masters/HPB said that one had to have in control the lower self/ego/personality, but never gave clear directions on how this could be achieved.  I believe that Krishnamurti focused entirely on the cleansing of the Lower Self through cleansing the ego/id/psyche of its falsely held "ideals" - its inherited value systems.  He tore them apart in a clear and consise way and pointed the way, certainly for me, to realise that my thinking had been societal driven rather than individually driven.  
  So I guess you could say I cherry picked this part of his philosophy.  As far as living in "the now", in my case, it is moments of spontaneity (and is somewhat the same as what Gurdgieff speaks of).  Our thoughts as we all know need to be mastered, however, I believe that it would take a supreme act of consciousness to attempt this while the ego still has some control over our day to day existence.  To die to every day is a feat which I believe is accomplished only by those further along the path than I.

Aryel Sanat <> wrote:
          To all readers,

My name is Aryel Sanat, & I am introducing myself to all of you, 
since I'll be participating in some of the discussions. For health 
reasons, I may not be able to stay long. I am particularly 
interested in comments made by a number of you about Krishnamurti & 
his relationship to theosophy & the TS, which strikes me as a central 
issue in the present elections. I'd like to share with you my five 
cents' worth on the subject, hoping also to learn something in the 
process. Before I jump in to respond to some comments & issues 
raised on this subject, I'd like to make a brief statement.

My perception is that it is extremely difficult, perhaps impossible, 
to make any sense of what K might mean in a theosophical context 
unless one understands the difference between what I have called 
Theosophy (with a capital T) and theosophy (small t), based on the 
distinction made by HPB & her teachers between "esoteric" and 
"exoteric." Capital T Theosophy is a system of thought that was 
created around teachings given initially by HPB & her teachers, & 
then further elaborated on by others, both in & out of the TS. Small 
t theosophy refers to the process of psychological transformation 
that has always been at the center of every single perennial school 
in the world.

So Theosophy & theosophy have some points in common, but they are 
radically different in essence. When one speaks (in the present 
context) of such things as reincarnation, karma, life after death, 
root races, & the like, one is speaking in Theosophical terms. When 
one speaks of the psychological rigors implicit in what used to be 
called "initiation" in every single perennial school, one is speaking 
of theosophy. In this context, anyone engaging in the death of the 
me that theosophy consists of, would be almost certain to understand 
someone who is engaged in Theosophy, which is a system of ideas. On 
the other hand, someone engaging exclusively in Theosophy might find 
it very hard to understand theosophy. A Theosophist might find it 
difficult to understand someone trying to convey some of the 
implications of theosophy. A Theosophist might expect to see his 
ideas & expectations, based mostly on reading books & listening to 
"knowledgeable" people, confirmed in some way or another. A 
Theosophist might even be shocked to hear what a theosophist might 
say on some subjects.

For instance, a theosophist --- being someone engaged in dying to the 
known --- might shun beliefs of any kind, given that all beliefs can 
become forms of attachment, crutches in important ways. In the 
process of being a theosophist, she had to face the reality that 
beliefs --- like any other "possessions" of the me --- need to be 
transcended, & are ephemeral. So when a Theosophist hears this, he 
might be shocked. Conceivably, he might say things like: "You mean 
I must not believe in reincarnation? Preposterous! You must be crazy!"

According to HPB & her teachers, they were attempting to make the 
world aware of the existence of theosophy throughout the ages. 
Unfortunately, they had a very big problem in being able to 
accomplish this: The majority of people were of the world, worldly, 
& the last thing these worldly people would be likely to be 
interested in would be for someone to tell them that in order for 
there to be true wisdom/compassion, they had to die to all their 
attachments based on their conditioning. After all, this is 
precisely what all candidates in the world, for millenia, had to do, 
in every single perennial school we know of. In Egypt, a candidate 
is said to have been put in a sarcophagus (a coffin) for several days 
on end, so as to face his own mortality, & so as to see directly the 
lack of substance in the candidate's various attachments in "the 
outside world." This also is part of the purpose of Tibetan lamas 
meditating while sitting on the bones of some formerly wise lama, now 
physically gone: Meditation under such circumstances brings home the 
point that even if you're very wise & compassionate, important 
components of why people remember you after you die are also gone. 
theosophical realities can be ruthlessly clear about some realities 
of life.

People in "the outside world" don't want to hear about any of this, 
finding it rather loony & "impractical" & even "fantastical." & if 
such a reaction is true today (when we've been exposed to Buddhism, 
transpersonal psychology, mythology, Krishnamurti, & a great deal 
more), imagine what the reaction would have been in the late 19th 
century, when HPB, at the behest of her teachers, was trying to point 
out the existence & reality of this "other world" to people who were 
snobishly certain that they already knew all that was important to 
know. For instance, in 1895 (4 years after HPB died) Lord Kelvin 
(whose work is still relevant in the field of physics) made the 
statement that perhaps the Chair of Physics should be closed, since 
everything that needed to be known in physics was already known! & 
please look at the fact that Lord Kelvin was a particularly smart guy 
of the times.

In such environment of unmitigated hubris, HPB's teachers had no 
other choice than to provide people with something they might be more 
likely to accept. This is why various "teachings" were presented to 
such an audience, in the hope (perhaps a "forlorn hope," as KH called 
it at one point) that perchance a few would see the importance of 
theosophy, of engaging in a transformative lifestyle. The 
"teachings" that were given out eventually became known as 
"Theosophy." These "teachings" were meant all along to provide an 
avenue for the few, to move on to what really mattered to the 
perennial teachers: transformation of human society through the 
theosophical transformation of individuals.

If you are interested in seeing documentation for these statements 
regarding theosophy & Theosophy, I provide it in part in the 
following two papers, which were presented at the Third Secret 
Doctrine Symposium, held in Oklahoma City in May, 1998. The first 
paper documents this distinction in the major works of HPB other than 
The Secret Doctrine. The second paper shows how this distinction is 
critical in order to understand the deeper meaning of The Secret 
Doctrine. As I pointed out in this second paper, The Secret Doctrine 
is in great part a commentary on The Stanzas of Dzyan, & based on 
what HPB herself says (as quoted in the paper) this ancient 
manuscript would have been called The Stanzas of Zen if HPB had been 
living 50 years later, when the world was more acquainted with the 
word "zen."

The Stanzas, as she points out at the beginning of The Voice of the 
Silence, is the same kind of book that The Voice is. As she put it:

"The work from which I here translate forms part of the series as 
that from which the "Stanzas" of The Book of Dzyan were taken, on 
which The Secret Doctrine is based."

It should be observed that The Voice of the Silence is strictly a 
book of psychological transformation, not a metaphysical treatise in 
any way, shape, or form. This is a work of theosophy, not of 
Theosophy. Of further interest is that it is from these texts that 
HPB derived some of her theosophical "training" under her teachers. 
As she put it, "I know many of these Precepts by heart," suggesting 
that her own theosophical "training" consisted in part on meditating 
on these "Precepts."

In any case, here are the two papers, with fuller documentation of 
the fact that HPB & her teachers made a very clear & vital 
distinction between theosophy & Theosophy. Usually, they made this 
distinction by calling theosophy "the esoteric teachings," & calling 
Theosophy "the exoteric teachings." Both have a value. Without 
Theosophy, many people would never have found out about theosophy. 
So we do need Theosophy, & making this distinction is not a matter of 
putting it down as unessential. But it is also true that Theosophy 
is not theosophy, & we should be very, very clear about this fact. 
Otherwise, it does not seem possible to have any clarity at all 
regarding K & his place in theosophical history.

> I will address specific questions & issues raised by some of you in 
> subsequent messages.

> Aryel

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