Good News from ITC – part three
- Published: Monday, 26 September 2016 07:38
ITC 2016: Visions of a Far-Flung Future – A Moderator’s Impression
Jonathan Colbert – USA
The ITC 2016 moderator Jonathan Colbert and a tree
Like a dream of higher reminiscence, pages from a golden age tale, or visions foretelling a far-flung future, impressions and reflections of the conference well up in my mind’s eye. Twenty years ago, I would never have guessed that in my lifetime there would be a Theosophical conference with 108 people from various Theosophical traditions genuinely seeking together the heart of Theosophy and trying to learn about brotherhood by doing it. Yet the 2016 ITC Conference in Santa Barbara, California turned out to be a living example of its very theme, Theosophy and Social Responsibility.
Finding my way to the front of the room that Thursday afternoon in August, I passed by a woman intensely studying a document that offered instructions on how a wise combination of good deeds and deep knowledge were needed in the true service of humanity. It was H.P.B.’s article, “Let Every Man Prove His Own Work.” Even though the hall was clamorous with conversations and abuzz with anticipation, the woman poured over the article’s pages as if she were the only person in the room. Yes, I reflect now, this is how it will be in the future if we all keep working together! Thousands if not millions, just like her, will be intensely focused on the wisdom of H.P.B.
The labyrinth on the wonderful grounds of La Casa da Maria
A gong sounded, starting the proceedings. It reverberated through the happy hall, as people from three great Theosophical streams and many other non-affiliated Theosophists, found their chairs. As if in a dream, I took up my role as master of ceremonies, welcoming all to the conference. A remarkable harmony settled in, as if the Conference attendees were only re-convening and re-discovering a previous bond from previous lifetimes. After a moment of silence dedicated to the memory of the life, work and passing of Dara Eklund, the three presidents of ITC (from three continents), Jan Nicolaas Kind, Herman C. Vermeulen and Gene Jennings, inaugurated the conference, offering their thoughts and blessings. Carolyn Dorrance from Santa Barbara ULT then offered her cheery comments on the proceedings that would unfold.