What’s your name, where are you from and how long have you been a member of the TS?
My name is Cees Slob and during half of my present incarnation I have been a member of the TS Point Loma Blavatsky House and still am.
2. Are you active in your Lodge/Section and if so, what do you do?
I am active in the study group of the Rotterdam Lodge. In Rotterdam we have a very active nucleus of members who are supporting the international work of the TS PLB. Furthermore I am one of the many volunteers for the ISIS Foundation, the subsidiary of the TS PLB. ISIS stands for Internationaal Studie Centrum voor Onafhankelijk Waarheidsonderzoek (International Study Centre for the Independent Quest for Truth). I am one of the many co-workers for the practical work in the binding department for the printing work of the Foundation. I also assist in preparing the books with regard to the initiative for the online shop.
3. How did you first learn about Theosophy or come in contact with the Society?
My friend and partner took me to a lecture in the Blavatsky House, The Hague because I asked so many questions. I got curious about the source of his knowledge and wanted to investigate for myself. That was exactly the attitude necessary to develop one self, as I found out later. The first lecture was about the Logoïc Jesus. I remember that to me it did not come across as strange in spite of my Christian background. I was inspired by the lecture given by the leader at that time of the TS PLB, Mr. Kok, to proceed with my quest for Truth. Now, many years later, I know that this quest will never end.
4. What does Theosophy mean to you?
I find Theosophy very practical. It enables me to find answers to the many questions of life. At the same time it is my ethical compass. For example, with Brotherhood and the Third Fundamental Principle in view, discrimination is in disharmony with Nature. In essence we are all brothers. That is such an eye-opener. The Cyclicity of the Second Fundamental Principle with which life / consciousness is manifesting itself is another basic idea. All and everyone comes and goes and develops himself in his own way. The course called Anders Denken (Thinking Differently) is a great way to get to know oneself as a thinker and one’s unlimited possibilities by means of self-enquiry. I daily use elements of it in my work as a counsellor of people who have lost their grip on their life often because of a mental imbalance due to addiction or dementia. As a student of Theosophy one develops gradually throughout the years a broader view of the universal laws which enable one to help other people to get the best out of themselves. This is not something up in the air or sentimental but something very practical and that’s what I like. If something cannot be applied in practice then I lose interest in it.
5. What is your favorite Theosophical book and why?
This question is difficult to answer. I like to read from Gottfried de Purucker, W.Q. Judge, but also from D. J. P. Kok. His “Esoterisch achtergrond van het Christendom” (Esoteric Background of Christianity) taught me to get to know my old religion. But since we are preparing for ISIS the books of Katharine Tingley for the online literature web-shop, I see such inspiring thoughts that I promised myself to read them again. http://www.blavatskyhouse.org/onlineliterature
I find it a very inspiring thought that all these authors went on working out The Atmic picture as presented by H. P. Blavatsky. I like very much the idea that we can again study the writings that the teachers of humanity left for us. The articles in Dutch and now also in English of Lucifer (The Light Bearer) are amongst my favorites and are also a useful addition for my study. It all stimulates me to look for its practical application.
6. What in your opinion is the biggest challenge the TS is facing at the moment?
The biggest challenge for every organization and her members is to keep the teachings pure and with Theosophy in view to work together with people from other organizations. I think this can be done in a practical way by contacting people from other organizations, by studying together and exchanging ideas. “Fusion” of people and ideas is much more interesting as result than when everyone is trying to develop things by himself. We are living in a very interesting period of time in which such an initiative as the ITC www.theosconf.org is doing pioneering work. In my view the Fusion is working very well there. People are meeting in an open atmosphere, training in compassion together. Those who have been attending take the thoughts with them to their groups and pass it on. Thus the fire of the ITC is being spread all over the world. I think that our world is in great need for very practical answers and solutions for all the big problems and the many questions of life. The answers are to be found in Theosophy. What we need now are enough people todisseminate together in an inspiring way the universal ideas of Theosophy and its practical applications.
7. Is there anything you would wish for the future of the Theosophical Movement?
It is my wish that students of Theosophy carry with them the wonder for life because it helps in one’s search and development and I wish that every student does the best he can in his daily life. That’s all. My ideal is that every student in his own way being a purveyor of culture in his or her own environment expresses Theosophy in his own life.
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.