Re: TS Membership Trend
May 15, 2008 00:12 AM
by Anton Rozman
>The international character of the TS (Adyar) is historically
exemplified in the composition of the General Council in 1905, the
year in which the Society was incorporated in Madras.<
According to its Memorandum and Rules and Regulations the
Theosophical Society is indeed an international society but its legal
status in different countries around the world in which it is present
is not such.
Namely, to function as an international society, for instance in
Slovenia, the Theosophical Society should apply to Slovenian
authorities to be registered as an international society operating in
Slovenia. Then the Rules and Regulations of the Theosophical Society
would be also the by-laws of the Regional Association of the TS in
Slovenia and according to these Rules and Regulations the RA of the
TS in Slovenia could adopt its own Rules and Regulations on lower
Now the TS in Slovenia is incorporated as Slovenian society under the
Slovenian Societies Act and has its own by-laws and is legally
independent society, so that the international President and the
bodies of the TS has no legal authority over the TS in Slovenia.
There exist only a declaration and willingness that the TS in
Slovenia is connected with the Theosophical Society.
As far as I know there is similar situation in other countries around
the world. The national societies are incorporated as various forms
of non-profit organizations under appropriate Societies, Companies
and Corporations Acts.
When the TS was incorporated in 1905 in India there didn't exist an
international law or agreement in regard to the international
societies yet. I think that the first organization which began to
operate as an international society was the Red Cross in 1912.
But this issue is rather complex and probably can not be discussed
profoundly on such forum as this mail list. I hope that we could find
in near future some constructive form for such debate.
--- In email@example.com, "prmoliveira" <prmoliveira@...>
> --- In firstname.lastname@example.org, "Anton Rozman" <anton_rozman@>
> > Hi Paul,
> > >Why has the presidency of Radha been so successful in terms of
> > Indian membership and so disastrous most everywhere else? Might
> > have to do with consolidating what she sees as her power base and
> > letting everyone else go hang? What has she done right in India?
> > could it be used as a model elsewhere?<
> > Maybe it has to do with the actual formal situation. Namely, the
> > Theosophical Society (Adyar) is an Indian society. Sections or
> > national societies are likewise incorporated as national
> > Till now the Theosophical Society didn't seek to become an
> > international society as thousands of others now existing in the
> > world. And with the continuation of such discrepancy the gulf to
> > rest of the world is becoming larger and larger. In this sense
> > elections are crucial.
> The international character of the TS (Adyar) is historically
> exemplified in the composition of the General Council in 1905, the
> year in which the Society was incorporated in Madras. I quote from
> the "Memorandum of Association":
> "GENERAL COUNCIL
> President-Founder: H. S. Olcott, Adyar, Madras, Author. Vice-
> President: A. P. Sinnett, London, England, Author. Recording
> Secretary: Hon. Sir S. Subramania Aiyar, Madras, Justice of the
> Court. Treasurer: W. A. English, M.D., Adyar, Madras, Retired
> Alexander Fullerton, General Secretary, American Section,
> 7, West 8th St., New York.
> Upendra Nath Basu. B.A., LL.B., General Secretary, Indian
> Benares, U.P.
> Bertram Keightley, M.A., General Secretary, British Section,
> 28, Albemarle St., London, W.
> W. G. John, General Secretary, Australasian Section,
> 42, Margaret Street, Sydney, N.S.W.
> Arvid Knos, General Secretary, Scandinavian Section,
> Engelbrechtsgatan, 7, Stockholm, Sweden.
> C. W. Sanders, General Secretary, New Zealand Section,
> Queen Street, Auckland, New Zealand.
> W. B. Fricke, General Secretary, Netherlands Section,
> 76, Amsteldijk, Amsterdam.
> Th. Pascal, M.D., General Secretary, French Section,
> 59, Avenue de la Bourdonnais, Paris.
> Decio Calvari, General Secretary, Italian Section,
> 380, Corso Umberto I., Rome.
> Dr Rudolf Steiner, General Secretary, German Section,
> 95, Kaiserallee, Friedenau, Berlin.
> Jose M. Masso, Acting General Secretary, Cuban Section,
> Havana, Cuba."
> Another indication that the TS (Adyar) has an international nature
> that the current Presidential election is taking place in 54
> countries around the world. In other words, TS members in all those
> countries are voting, in a direct election, to elect the Society's
> There is still yet one more evidence that the TS (Adyar) is an
> international Society: the diversity of its Presidents. Olcott was
> American, Besant was English, Arundale was English, Jinarajadasa
> Singhalese, Sri Ram was Indian, John Coats was Scottish and Radha
> Burnier is Indian.
> Records show that Radha does visit Lodges in the Indian Section on
> regular basis. Her visits are reported in the "Indian Theosophist",
> the magazine of that Section. But she has also visited, regularly,
> quite a number of other Sections around the world. She has
> three Blavatsky Lectures in the English Section (1979, 1988 and
> 2005); she has been a guest speaker at the Annual Meeting of the TS
> in America in Wheaton a number of times; she has conducted seminars
> at the International Theosophical Centre in Naarden, Holland, and
> toured a number of European Section many times over the years,
> visited Russia in 1991, during the celebrations of the HPB
> year; she toured Africa extensively in 1982 and 1993; she went on
> extensive lecture tours through many Sections in Latin America in
> 1983, 1987, 1994 and 2003. She has also lectured in Australia and
> Zealand several times and she presided over three World Congresses
> the TS (Adyar): 1982, in Nairobi; 1993, in Brasilia, and 2001, in
> Sydney. She also attended the World Parliament of Religions in
> Chicago, in 1993.
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