Susan Kaschula— South Africa
Susan is the General Secretary of the Theosophical Society in Southern Africa. Joined the TS in 1993, and lives in Johannesburg.
The Secret Doctrine states that “stagnation and death is the future of all that vegetates without change.” Standing still instead of moving forward is contrary to the inner evolutionary urge.
The nineteenth-century Catholic philosopher Cardinal Newman commented, “In higher worlds it may be otherwise, but here below, to live is to change and to be perfect is to have changed often.”
On the political stage, President Barrack Obama sensed the collective desire of his audiences by using “Change we need” as his campaign slogan. Change resonated with the deep-seated concerns of thousands regarding the challenges facing the planet and the need to explore new ways forward for their individual and collective future. These solutions will be dependent upon group effort and universal co operation. Albert Einstein noted: “We cannot solve a problem with the same kind of thinking that gave rise to it.” “Change we need” challenges us globally, in communities and organisations, and on a personal level.
As Theosophists, we should heed our Founder’s warning regarding change, by guarding against stagnation, be sensitive to the evolutionary urge of the new age and respond by moving forward in fresh directions, but always mindful of the unchanging universal truths upon which our Society was founded. In the past, Theosophical pioneers for change bucked popular religious opinion when they presented new concepts based on these ancient truths to a materialistic and prejudiced world. Their writings, which contained an all inclusive understanding of life, helped awaken the spiritual impulse in many people. According to the ageless wisdom, evolution is spiritually based. The spiritual life uses a form through which it expresses itself and evolves. As the evolutionary urge impinges upon its vehicle of expression, it unfolds its potentialities to the limit that its vehicle allows. When that form becomes inadequate and limiting for the life expression, a new and more sensitive vehicle is then required.
Using this analogy on the Theosophical Society, in order to move it vibrantly forward, we need to examine the limiting structures which form the present Theosophical vehicle. Is it not time to create a new model which will carry us for a time into the future? A vehicle more suitably adapted to express the qualities of the new age—to move away from a moribund autocratic model whose administration are the victims of its outmoded structure to one which is open to constructive change, future planning, and group effort and which actively demonstrates service, goodwill, gratitude and brotherhood. “We awaken in others the same attitude of mind we hold towards them” (Elbert Hubbard).
If started at the top, by their example, these qualities should stimulate a groundswell of enlightened thinking which will hold the vision for Theosophical transformation.