1. What’s your name, where are you from and how long have you been a member of the TS?
My name is Wouter A. van Beers and I was born in what now is called Indonesia, but have been living in The Netherlands since 1946. Between 1934 and 1946 I experienced wonderful, but also somber years especially during the Second World War in the former Dutch East-Indies, a Dutch colony which was invaded by Japanese forces in January 1942.
2. Are you active in your Lodge/Section and if so, what do you do?
My wife Nell might have given a similar answer in her interview. We have been very active for many years accomplishing many objectives and holding various positions. Now, a little older, we still visit some Lodges and participate in events of interest.
3. How did you first learn about Theosophy or come in contact with the Society?
While still in the Dutch East-Indies, my grandparents and my mother were active Theosophists and after the war, upon arrival in The Netherlands, we picked up the threads again. First I joined the International Order of the Round Table, founded by the Theosophist Herbert White. The ceremonies of the order and all further activities were held on the premises of the International Theosophical Centre in Naarden.
In 1961/1962, I joined the Young Theosophists (YT). This very active group often came to our home in Utrecht for study courses and lectures. In February 1967 I became a member of the TS-Adyar. In due course I took the position of chairman of the Bilthoven Lodge until I got involved with the work for the Utrecht Lodge. Later I was active as the chairman of the Utrecht Lodge as well, and I still am a member of the Theosofia Foundation.
I am particularly and deeply connected with that splendid International Theosophical Centre in Naarden, were I served for more than 30 years on the board. It was possible for me to initiate a great number of diverse activities. One of the many highlights was the opening of the newly built Besant Hall in 1970 in the presence of Rukmini Devi who was the head of the Centre.
My aim was to introduce people to Theosophists and Theosophy and since, though my regular work, I dealt with art and artists of all kinds, for a number of years I was able to organize art expositions with the assistance of a team of young Theosophists. The theme we used for those displays was “Art creates communication.” In collaboration with my wife Nell we also arranged classical concerts with young and talented musicians, as well as seminars dealing with occidental studies in conjunction with the renowned Institute for Para-Psychology in Utrecht.
4. What does Theosophy mean to you?
I can be very brief: Theosophy encourages me to live in balance and harmony with nature as a whole. Theosophy made me aware of the fact that there is unity. The teachings of H. P. B and the Masters gave me insight and above all trust in life.
5. What is your favorite Theosophical book and why?
Actually, I must admit that I don’t have a special or favorite book. The Voice of the Silence inspires me to live a real Theosophical life, while H. P. B.’s The Secret Doctrine is a great source of knowledge and wisdom.
6. What in your opinion is the biggest challenge the TS Adyar (as an organization) is facing at the moment?
The challenge of the TS Adyar, and in that respect the challenge for all the other Theosophical traditions, is to make very clear that there is Unity, there is but one Life, and that all is interconnected!
“It is time that Theosophy should enter the arena!”
7. Is there anything you would wish for the future of the Theosophical Movement?
May the TS exist till the “objectives “are fulfilled and beyond.
From the editor:
Opinions and ideas expressed in the mini-interviews are exclusively of those who are being interviewed. They don’t necessarily represent the ideas and opinions of the compilers of Theosophy Forward. The responses of the interviewees are not edited for content. Some contributors give short answers to the questions while others touch upon the subject more elaborately.