How to Move Forward? Seven Steps To Holistic Development For The Future

Chaganti V.K. Maithreya – India

The septenary approach is not uncommon to Theosophists. Here is one.

Step 1 – Unity of Purpose

The pursuit of truth and the practice of universal brotherhood are the two pillars at the entrance to a Theosophical life. The motto and the objects of the Theosophical Society constantly reinforce and reiterate the direction in which to move. Of the greatest importance are the Mahachohan’s letter of 1881 and the Mahatma’s letter to Annie Besant in 1900. Unity of purpose among the members of the TS is a prerequisite to spreading the message of universal brotherhood in the world. In a letter of 1884, the Mahatma says, “Each one individually and collectively has to be utterly unselfish, kind and full of good will towards each other at least—leaving humanity out of the question; there must be no party spirit among the band, no backbiting, no ill will, or envy or jealously, contempt or anger.” This is no easy task, but it is the only choice for any honest member. Another adept once wrote, “You have to make once for ever your choice—either your duty to the Lodge or your own personal ideas.” For this, Viveka or Discrimination needs to be developed through mindfulness.

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How to Move Forward? Opinions Regarding Possible Future TS Global Activities: Part 3

Suzanne E.  Hassanein – Canada

In part two Suzanne, who is President of the Canadian Theosophical Association, mentioned some well known adult movies influenced by the occult and spirituality. In part three she discusses TV programs and gives an overview of how to present the Ancient Wisdom in modern forms.

Part Three.

About Television Programs and Moving with the Times

Lately some new programs have infiltrated TV land that have something occult about them or that show individuals with some kind of psychic gift. Examples are Medium; The Mentalist; The Listener; psychic detective work for police; Criss Angel Mindfreak; Ghost Whisperer; scary occult movies about evil spirits that prey on mortal bodies and minds or about possessions and hauntings. We have Stargate, Star Trek, amusing and serious movies about UFOs, aliens, and crop circles; movies like The Da Vinci Code and Angels and Demons, addressing old religious factions that need changing—the list is getting longer by the day. These programs and films are shifting human consciousness. Old patterns are falling apart and do not work well any more, or not at all.

Thinking about what I know from Theosophy and those I know who study Theosophy, I conclude that on the whole, Theosophy can appeal to intellectuals if they are not prejudiced by other ideas, and also some mystic types who have been on the spiritual journey in other lives, have found a contact again in this life, and feel a deep attraction. However, it becomes very clear that there are certain types of people in this world who are not interested in Theosophical concepts, nor will be, in their present incarnation.

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How to move forward? The Theosophical Order of Service lends a helping hand

Diana Dunningham Chapotin – France
Dorothy Bell – Australia

Diana is International Secretary of the TOS.  Her job is to coordinate the work of the TOS internationally.  She supports established groups and encourages the starting of new ones.  She reports to the International President on plans and achievements.

Dorothy drafts documents as the basis for the ongoing renewal and development of the TOS: self-evaluation tools, administrative guidelines, a plan of action, etc.

Service to others is possibly an element common to all our visions for the future of the TS. What then could be more natural than for active members of the Theosophical Order of Service to talk here about how the TOS can help the TS move forward?

Our dearest wish is to support the TS as a place where social action as spiritual practice is valued and actively nurtured.  To facilitate unselfish aid to those in distress (including animals and the planet itself) and the inner transformation of the server that this aid requires is the two-fold purpose of the TOS.

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How To Move Forward?

Jan Jelle Keppler — Belgium

Jan Jelle is the General Secretary of the Belgian Section. He has been a member of the Theosophical Society since 1976 and lives in Tervuren.

It is obvious that any moving forward for the Theosophical Society should be a moving in the direction of the objects of the TS. Most members are familiar with the three objects of the Society, which are about living the brotherhood of humanity, encouraging comparative study of religion, science and philosophy, and investigating unexplained laws of nature and the powers latent in man. Activities like the Society’s study groups, public lectures, and summer schools typically motivate members for the study of comparative religion and philosophy. Action thus concentrates on part of the second objective and few organized efforts are made to form a nucleus of the brotherhood of humanity or to investigate unexplained natural laws and latent human capacities.

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How To Move Forward? The Future of Theosophy

Padmanabhan Krishna – India

Prof. P. Krishna is currently in charge of the Krishnamurti study center at the Rajghat Education Center of the Krishnamurti Foundation India in Varanasi, India. He has written articles and books on various issues relating to the teachings of J. Krishnamurti. P. Krishna has lectured worldwide, and is a life member of the Theosophical Society.

When the founders started the Theosophical Society in the nineteenth century, they had a deep insight. They realized that religious truths, like scientific truths, are universal but more difficult to perceive since our preconceptions and limited experiences inhibit us from seeing the whole as it is and force us into a particular point of view. Our thoughts and intellect are limited because they depend on our memories and experience, both of which are necessarily limited. To perceive the actual truth, we must go beyond these limitations by eliminating all restrictive illusions from the mind.

Therefore the founders posited truth as the highest religion and regarded different religions as only approaches to it. One of the great fundamental truths they realized was that all human beings are essentially the same, brothers irrespective of where they are born or grow up. They did not posit this equality as an ideal to be achieved in the future but as a truth to be seen and realized here and now. There is nothing between the truth and ourselves except our own conditioning, which is different for different people and which colours our perceptions. One could say that truth comes into existence only when a consciousness perceives a fact without any distortion. To free our mind of all distortion or illusion is therefore the true religious quest, and it is synonymous with the quest for truth. This quest is nondenominational as it does not really matter which particular illusions I have to free myself from.

Madam Blavatsky clearly stated that Theosophy is not a religion, but is “the essence of all religion” (Key to Theosophy, 58). This was a remarkable insight far ahead of the times because even today humanity has not realized that the ultimate truth is universal. They mostly agree that there is only one science—there is no American science and Indian science—but they do not think so about religion. They agree that nature operates the same way everywhere, but they do not think so about human consciousness.

We therefore divide ourselves as belonging to different beliefs, which are acquired after birth and depend on the environment in which we grow up. Those beliefs are not truths; they are our particular brand of illusion. Fortunately, illusion is something that can be ended by perceiving what is true and what is false. Therefore one needs to posit the truth as the unknown and to have an inquiring, learning mind which is constantly discerning what is true from what is false, without adhering to any particular opinions, especially one’s own.

If we posit Theosophy as the human wisdom which resides in any mind that frees itself from all illusion and which is in actual perceptual contact with the eternal and universal truths, then there is no such thing as a future of Theosophy. The eternal, unchanging universal truths can have no future. Truth is not just a correct idea about facts, it is the direct perception of facts without any distortion. This is the essential distinction between religious truth and so-called philosophic truth. It is the direct perception of eternal truth that transforms our consciousness, not the idea of the truth. The professor of Buddhist philosophy is not the Buddha! The true religious quest is for transformation of consciousness, not just a transformation of ideas or beliefs. There is only one religious mind, which is the essence of all religions and that essence we call Theosophy.

In each one of us is the universal consciousness as well as an individual conditioned consciousness. A Theosophist is one who is acutely aware of this fact and therefore not trapped in his individual consciousness. It is only the universal awareness in us that can come in contact with the universal truths which are the essence of Theosophy. We can only live with the wisdom we have. However, our wisdom is not a static thing if we live with a learning mind that is constantly discerning what is true from what is false, thereby ending the false. The Theosophical mind lives not with beliefs and conclusions but with questions, constantly exploring and pushing the boundary between the known and the unknown.

If one reads the writings of Madam Blavatsky and Annie Besant, one finds that they were acutely aware of all this and have explicitly stated it in their works in many places, never considering themselves to be authorities to be believed in. If the Theosophical Society creates new beliefs, new authorities, and new rituals it will reduce Theosophy to a new religion. All religions have undone the teachings of their originator, and we will be making the same mistake. So, brothers and sisters, the future of the Theosophical Society depends on us, not on the so-called leaders. It will be what we make of it. It can be a major force for the quest of truth in this world, or it can become mired in a new set of illusions.

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