- What’s your name, where are you from and how long have you been a member of the TS?
My name is Mark Becking from the Netherlands. I‘ve been a member for three years (2016).
I was a member of the Round Table in the sixties (1962-1967), were we did ceremonial work.
- Are you active in your Lodge/Section and if so, what do you do?
I’m a member of the Lodge in Naarden were we have the privilege of coming together at St. Michaels House at the ITC (International Theosophical Centre). I try to make a contribution in the field of ‘radical self-knowledge’ from a non-dualistic point of view. Bringing the essence of Theosophy into practice, is not only studying but also applying what we study. The tendency to mentally ponder on spiritual concepts needs to be connected to ourselves. In other words: I’m in favor of practicing self-reflection on how our false-Self is operating in order to be able to work on Self Transformation. More transparent and honest interaction in our Lodges will be helpful to attract the younger generations. I give lectures on topics like ‘Spiritual Bypass’ (that is how spiritual seekers are unconsciously trying to avoid confrontation with lower self-issues by escaping into study or seeking transcendence). I help Lodges to raise facilitators in how to lead group dynamic processes. I do this partly from my experience as a Psychologist for almost 40 years.
- How did you first learn about Theosophy or come in contact with the Society?
My grandmother and my mother were Theosophists. My grandmother helped me to find my way to the Theosophical Centre in Naarden when I was 12 years old in 1962.
- What does Theosophy mean to you?
Its non-dualist approach of the Ancient Wisdom. Study & meditation in combination with helping individual spiritual seekers in their process of Self-realization through processes of self inquiry etc.
- What is your favorite Theosophical book and why?
‘The Creative Silence’ by Rohit Mehta. But also received a lot of insight from modern teachers like Adyashanti (Buddhist teacher), Joan Tollifson, Richard Sylvester (neo-Advaita) and Nouk Sanchez (Course in Miracles)
- What in your opinion is the biggest challenge the TS is facing at the moment?
To become alive and alert and be open for new forms of spiritual practice and not stay in our comfort zone by holding too much to old traditions and be happy with how it has always been.
- Is there anything you would wish for the future of the Theosophical Movement?
I think the Theosophical Movement needs to make a shift from an over emphasis on intellectual lectures to a more practical approach on how to work with the essence of spiritual concepts. That the principle of Brotherhood and Oneness be brought more into Lodges by sharing, (self) confrontation and empathic listening. Practicing not to identify and becoming aware of our own projections, learning self-forgiveness, developing insight in escape-mechanisms etc. etc. This will create a new vitality and will attract younger seekers on the Path.
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.