The Theosophical Society (Adyar)

Institutional Issues

Perspective by Raquel Rodriguez with extracts from F. Pierce Spinks' book "Theosophists: Reunite!"

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I found the [Mahatma] letter No 47, highly interesting. This gives a great hope to True Theosophy to continue its true work, as I can see the actual TS is really ill from its very inner structure. 
I would like to give my humble opinion as an outside member of the Society, I might be totally wrong, but if I can compare analogically TS with Architecture I would say, they are so many problems within the TS, that it would be difficult to find out how to begin to fix them up.
I am a builder specialized in restoration of old historical buildings.
When a building is to be restored a diagnosis of its pathologies must be done, from a specialized architect in order to proceed efficiently. A specific order must be followed depending of the diagnosis.

a - Foundations and main structure (obviously);

b - Roof and facades. The first will keep the structure together and protected it. The second if not necessary yet, keeps the inner repairs away from public. It means, that even when in the inside much work has to be done, the general public does not have to be bothered from the dust and noise and ugliness of the inner work and at the same time, they can have already an idea of how beautiful the building will be when it is finished;

c - Distribution of space, inside divisions and finally decoration.
Well, for what I have been reading on this forum, the main and foundation problem of the TS is:

a - Leadbeater and Besant, or Neo-Theosophy. How can a Society be united if it is divided in to diametrical opposed teachings? Or even more, they are not diametrical opposed, HPB teaching would be the foundation stone and Leadbeater the pathology. This has to be fixed, but do not ask me how, I am not an architect. Seems complicated to me anyhow, as I ignore many factors. But I can not really understand that both teachings are coexisting until today, under the same roof of the same society.
b - You mention new teachers are needed. I would compare this with roofs and facades. I think they are already good teachers, maybe what is wrong is that they are not recognized by the whole of the Society as such, and that's the problem. General public would get confused and contradictory information from different teachers.
c - Inside distribution. Actual politics and hierarchy. If the first too are solved properly this should not be a great problem, of course would be discussion about who would get by the biggest window and not everyone would be completely happy, but with unity every one should be happy to have a place to develop the work they love. And democracy would ensure that every one would have the right to, one day, be able to work by the nicest window. However if the first two are not solved it does not matter how many discussions, cracks would come out of the walls constantly, does not matter how much you paint and leaks out of the ceiling.

What it is worst a great deal of energy, that could be conduced on a more creative and so for useful way, would be wasted in covering up what from the structure is wrong.
But a pathology I can not really understand in TS, it is what Power means for a Theosophist. Is the salary of the president very high or the power is about to posses Truth? This is a very preoccupying pathology.
Raquel Rodriguez

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Thank you very much for excellent common sense perspective. As to your point in regard to different teachings I would suggest that we examine what F. Pierce Spinks said in his book: Theosophists: Reunite!

In the chapter Comparison of basic teachings after comparing some basic teachings F. Pierce Spinks concludes:

It is plain that the basic doctrines dealt with have found complete acceptance on the part of the authoritative writers of all Theosophical groups. The similarity between the ideas expressed by each author quoted, and the words of H.P.B., are quite evident.

Then in Conclusions F. Pierce Spinks says:

… in their hearts all Theosophists really want to promote the best interests of the Movement and … our problems are due to honest, if unwarranted, differences of opinion as to what is best for the Movement. Of course, people have the right to differ, but this right imposes on them the obligation to do so in a manner which is constructive.

The Theosophical Society is a philosophical enterprise of such vast importance that we cannot afford to dilute its energies by internal weaknesses.

The Theosophical edifice must be soundly structured, with all its parts in harmonious relationship. It is not up to the Masters to restore our integrity. We must advance towards Them, towards the position of strength and wisdom from which we retreated.

Despite seeming difficulties we call for an immediate return to the integrity, dignity and strength of a reunited Movement, a Movement which will truly and effectively serve those Great Men who gave it birth and who are even now watching and hoping to see it cleansed of its unsatisfactory features so that it may worthily represent them as their organ on this earth for useful and practical work among men.

The seriousness of the times and the pitiful sufferings of our fellowmen demand, as said, nobility of spirit from all of us. We must not wait until it is too late.

Only a truly united Theosophical Movement can hope to take its place in a world challenged as never before by dynamic forces. Love is the missing link in inter-Theosophical relations.

You must take the initiative in seeking out and finding ways of learning and sharing what you hold in mutual high esteem. New experiments are needed in an effort to reconcile past differences. No doors must be shut because of a belief background. Saturate everything you do with the spirit of love and brotherhood. You, the members of the Theosophical Society, will then speak with power and authority because you will be daily demonstrating that which you profess.

A new attack is to be made on ignorance and it will need all members of the Theosophical family in ranks that are closed against suspicions, doubts, yes, even hatreds of one another. The task ahead demands the combined efforts of all of you pulling in one direction under a unified command.

You have an obligation to the coming generation of Theosophists and to those now unborn to bequeath to them a Movement soundly structured in accord with the vision of the Founders, one free of resentments, party lines, or any form of bitterness. It must be a Movement wholly fit for use by us. The program that lies ahead is too important and grand in scope to be circumscribed with limitations imposed by human weaknesses and local loyalties.

If you embrace this program then the Theosophical Society will be emblazoned on the pages of religious history as a tool of vast importance in solving the troubled affairs of men; for it will then be worthy of use by Messengers who will use its platform for dispelling ignorance - Messengers who will be recognized because all their works will breathe beneficence and peace.

We now await the day when you shall have accomplished the plan we have just laid before you. We are eager to see it done so that we can again come among you and help you. Then and only then can Isis be further unveiled. Non-cooperation and disunity mean disintegration and death. Unification and harmony mean growth and vital expansion beyond your fondest dreams. Lift your hearts to the Light and seize with strength and with joy this golden opportunity.

Last update: January 2009
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