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Membership of TS in America - A review

Oct 15, 2011 09:46 PM
by MKR

In the recent issue of The Messenger - the official membersâ supplement to
Quest magazine, we are told that as of May 31, the American Section
membership stands at 3,328.

I was browsing Joy Millsâ book 100 Years of Theosophy and following are the
historial statistics:

1912   3550
1920   7000
1921   8713
1941   3144
1949   4000
1955   4000
1959   4565
1970   5436
1971   5896
1972   6119

My recollection is that the most recent highest membership of about 8000
occurred during the Presidency of Dora Kunz.

At 1912 or even 1920, the Section did not have much money in the bank. We
have now millions in the bank making the Section richest in the world.  In
the next 5 to 10 years, we can expect to receive substantial additional
bequests from old members as they die.

>From the time of Dora Kunz, we had very able, scholarly, dedicated leaders
who can boast their credentials. None of the leaders have touched the topic
of the dismal performance of the leaders in the area of member recruitment
and retention. On the other hand, in recent years, members attention was
diverted to what was going on in Adyar and how the rules have to be changed
and even going as far as secretly attempting to seize control of
International Presidency.

While this is the trend in the USA and in most Western Countries, the
situation in India is exactly opposite. The membership and new lodge
formations have been steadily growing and this simply points to the fact
that the leadership in India is doing something right. The membership now in
India is so significant that in any International President Election, they
will have a significant say much to the envy and disappointment of the many
Western Sections which have very small membership.

Is it not high time to find out why any of the efforts of the leaders in the
American Section were ineffective in bringing in and retaining new members.
Shoeing it under the rug and ignoring is self defeating.

I hope leaders start doing something before it is too late.


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