Theosophy News Worldwide 2nd Quarter 2022
Dear friends of Theosophy,
this 34th issue includes some strange occurrences: In TS Adyar England there was a (forced?) resignation of a National Secretary accompanied (in the rumor mill) by very serious allegations, read about it the Section with News from Theosophical Societies. Meanwhile in Chennai (TS Adyar HQ) they secretly closed a $64 million land deal under strange conditions and a request for the return of 81 acres of TS-land came in, read more about it in this quarter's topic.
I asked in the last Issue, if someone knows about the standstill on the blog "Theosophy Watch" and thanks to the readers who took the effort to reply: Odin Townley, the author of the blog and member of ULT New York, died last year at age 83. A great loss on this side of the world, also for Theosophy. Albeit very belatedly my condolences to the bereaved families.
Within the international press Theosophy was present again, up to the New York Times: F.e., did you know that Kandinsky prophesies, that science will soon recognize Madame Blavatsky, that the Hermann Hesse was spiritually influenced by Theosophy or the theosophical connection within the lifes of Aldous Huxley (?), Belgian painter Charles Doudelet, the great Belgian–French Explorer Alexandra David-Neel, the Australian historian, author & entertainer Jim Haynes or Maud Gonne MacBride? Read about it in the section with the International press review about Theosophy.
And even if I try very hard to give a helpful overview here every three months, it is, as one reader noted recently in a comment: There are many more theosophical groups out there and I'm aware oft it. I report here about the "organized movement". That means not, that, f.e., the Bailey or Roerich groups are not organized (of which the commentator is a member), but nothing "official" as an organisation (or am I wrong?). And by the way, I would like to link into Facebook-groups, but it's technical not possible, one can only link into personal profiles, if they are public.
So you can read here what the (organized) movement moves, but the whole Theosophical Movement is of course many times bigger with all the independent theosophists and all the spiritual descendants of "original" Theosophy in many different countries and languages, than what I limit myself to here: Regular English-language-news and articles from the traditional (western) theosophical movement (established by Blavatsky and friends) (now populated by dinosaurs, as as the commentator said) and such blogs and press-article about Theosophy available without hurdles and free of charge.
And now I wish you an informative read and a peaceful summer.
With kind regards from Germany
Editor of Theosophy World News
Pictures, as usual, in public domain from unsplash.com.
Topic of the quarter
$64 million land deal as a solution to financial problems?
On May 31, the Theosophical Society Adyar ... signed a 43-year lease with the Shiv Nadar Trust (Shiv Nadar is an Indian billionaire industrialist) ceding control of Damodar Gardens, a 14-acre plot of land in Besant Nagar, on which the Shiv Nadar Trust will establishing a school, hostel and quarters for teachers and staff. So the two entities signed a Rs 512 crore land deal [USD 64 Mio.] .....The annual rent that TS will charge SNT for the first and second year would be Rs 1.42 crore and Rs 3.42 crore. From the third year onwards, the rent would be Rs 6.83 crore [USD 0,85 Mio.] with an increase of 2.5% per year, as IndiaTimes, TheNewsMinute or Theos Talk (see below) reported.
It's about 4 years ago, that TS Adyar made a similar deal, at that time it was leasing 7 acres land at Damodar Gardens in Besant Nagar to TVS Educational Services to set up an international school, skill development center and a football stadium, as IndiaTimes or this newsletter reported.
In contrast to the deal four years ago, there is a statement from the TS itself about the current deal, see The Theosophist, Vol. 143, No.10, July 2022, page 41, wherein no numbers are given (except for the size of the leased land), but concerns regarding nature are met:
The process leading up to this moment was 2-1/2 years in the making [as an "outsider" and probably also a ordinary member of this TS, this is the first time you hear about it]....
The school will be constructed.... not only be “carbon-neutral” but will actually be “carbon-positive”, creating an environmental benefit by removing carbon dioxide from its environment. No old growth trees will be cut down or damaged during the course of construction, and any trees that are encroaching on built spaces will be moved and planted elsewhere on the grounds.
We don't want already mushrooming international schools ......let this stay as it is
Very sad to hear this.. Some one should stop this. Wat's the use of a international school..at that place by destorying all natural sources.
Very bad decision..You are increasing the Chennai temperature.You will destroy the thousands of trees and birds..
And so on. Additional revenue of $0.85 million per year is a lot of money. And as shown, not the only such deal. But there are also those (on Theos Talk), who believe that TS has been taken for a ride with a fixed inflation rate of 2.5%, talking about a "give away" or a "sweat heart deal". 20 years 10% inflation with 2.5% compensation makes it 0.2 million per year (in purchasing power compared to today).
IndiaTimes reported also:
The deed empowers the trust to run Olcott Memorial Higher Secondary School and Adyar Theosophical Academy without altering their basic charter. The first is completely free, while the second was established to be non-competitive and free from fear of results. [see comment here (Theos Talk)]
“The Shiv Nadar Foundation aims to establish a world-class K-12 school in Chennai, which will be a progressive, ecologically sensitive school with the highest international standards....” said Shiv Nadar Trust.
Calls for transparency become loud, also the question of whether this is still non-profit. And other details have become known from the contract itself (not verified) and it becomes partly unclear (source also Theos Talk):
- 1) In the contract, the TS is allegedly referred to as a religious organization, which raises questions, see here, because it is assumed Theosophy is not a religion and TS not a religious organization
- 2) The school rental agreement is between Theosophical Society an a so far not known Theosophical Education Society, see here and here
It will be interesting to see how this story continues. When it comes to real estate, things are likely to remain exciting in Chennai anyway because:
It's about a claim of 81 acres of land at the TS Chennai Estate (purchased by Anny Besant 1908 from the prince of Arcot) because a letter has come in the name of the heirs of the fifth prince of Arcot, asking for the return of the land acquired as a legal purchase: 'We want to get this land back and use it properly.' [so] confusion has arisen among the members and administrators of the TS.
Is the TS preparing for something bigger, we don't know? Or was it just a favorable opportunity to get some lift from the structural problems of declining revenues due to falling membership numbers, but at the same time constantly rising costs?
What do you think:
Press outside the movement about Theosophy
TheHindu.com was concerned with Grit and gumption: Annie Besant and the Indian freedom Movement.
TheNewsMinute deals with Chennai Theosophical Society’s 500 cr land deal with Shiv Nadar Trust raises concerns.
Want to Understand Mondrian’s Paintings? Try Dancing to Them is a tip of the New York Times. Mondrian's relationship to Theosophy is also made a topic, described as "Mondrian’s long-term adherence to Theosophy, an occult movement that sought a mystic conception of cosmic harmony, as Mondrian put it, through nature."
Hermann Hesse (1877-1962), a famous German-Swiss poet, novelist and painter, was spiritually inspired by theosophy, along with Buddhism and Schopenhauer, as we learn in “Trees: An Anthology of Writings and Paintings:” A Review at patheos.com.
How a Belgian painter Charles Doudelet in Italy "managed to put Rosicrucianism and Theosophy at the center of the artistic stage in Belle Époque Tuscany" is reported by bitterwinter.org.
In a three-part series of articles bitterwinter.org asked also: Was the great Lithuanian painter Mikalojus Konstantinas Čiurlionis (1875–1911) influenced by the ideas of the Theosophical Society, as you can read here in part 1, part 2 and part 3.
The Emerging female artist ELDR states at rte.ie, that her "mother was a spiritual woman and I was bought up believing in occult theosophy" and that she "carry a spiritual worldview with me to this day".
TheReporter.com published an article about Scriabin and mentioned there, that Scriabin's "later works [were] influenced by Theosophy, an occult movement in the late 19th century”.
Kandinsky prophesies that science will soon recognize Madame Blavatsky, Theosophy, and the Spiritualists, as we can read at hyperallergic.com in its article On Kandinsky’s Spiritual Relationship With Music.
The Great Belgian–French Explorer Alexandra David-Neel (1868-1969) – Traveler, Opera Singer, Monk, Free Spirit "became a devotee of Madame Blavatsky’s Theosophical Society" if we believe explorersweb.com.
On indipendet.com we can read an article about Helene Zalk Pollock, who, with her husband Dr. Joseph Pollock, were famous entertainers of Beverly Hills of the 50s and 60s. She was the daughter of Louis Pollock, who introduced theosophy to Southern California and co-founded the Happy Valley School (now Besant Hill) in Ojai (along with theosophists Aldous Huxley, Dr. Annie Besant, Beatrice Wood, Jiddu Krishnamurti, and others), as indipendet says.
2gb.com paints a portrait of Aussie historian, author & entertainer Jim Haynes, who, until the end of his life, was interested in Theosophy and spiritualism.
Theosophical traces can also be found in the history of East-West Press, a publishing house in India, as the parents of one of the co-founders, William Dallas TenBroeck (1922-2006), were Theosophists, more here on thehindu.com.
TheAmericanConservative.com think about Christian Realism and in the course of this they also talk about Balavtsky, which "blended Western science with Eastern religion to create a scientific spiritualis... Adherents rose to the highest levels of politics (Henry Wallace), the military (Abner Doubleday), literature (Arthur Conan Doyle), music (Gustav Mahler), psychology (William James), and science (Thomas Edison). Even Gandhi was a Theosophist. He famously kept a picture of Blavatsky’s successor, Annie Besant, next to his portrait of Jesus."
hyperallergic.com states that "spiritualist philosophies like Theosophy espoused a connection with this other, deeper world or dimension" in answering the question: Do We Take Vibes for Granted?.
In the article Did the Lost Continent of Lemuria Ever Exist? Sclater, the geologist, probably never imagined that his hypothetical land of the lemurs would be adopted by Helena Blavatsky, a 19th-century Russian occultist and co-founder of the Theosophical Society. Theosophists believe that neither science nor religion have captured the full truth about the origins of Earth and mankind.."
On rte.ie we can read a remeniscence about Maud Gonne MacBride, the "forgotten Widows of the Revolution" and that "they engaged on the ground of theosophy.." after she met 1889 the famous Irish poet William Butler Yeats (1865-1939, a member of the theosophical society) in London.
Those who call HBP a fraud mostly missed or ignore the withdrawal of the SPR charges against her, as cbc.ca do, in it's article Madame Blavatsky: a seeker of truth — and a fraud calling her "the godmother of the New Age movement".
Dazeddigital.com connected the "the internet’s latest spiritual awakening" on TikTok -- which is Atlantis a part of or more concrete, people who believe, that they "are descendants of the sunken city" -- to the far-right conspiracies. The quoted author came to the strange statement of calling Helena Blavatsky a secret society. But this Trend is there, "the hashtag #Atlantis itself has 54.7 million views".
It is for the latter [the personalities] to cling to it; and thus partaking of its [Monads] divine nature, obtain immortality.
ITC-Board (ULT, TSPL, Adyar)
Europ. Fed. of the TS Adyar and TS Adyar in England
European School of Theosophy
more information, programm (pdf)
European School of Theosophy
TS Adyar Headquarter
Indo-Pacific Federation of the Theosophical Society
News from Theosophical Societies
The TS Adyar England-Case: On April 23, 2022 Ms. B. resigned as National Secretary and Board member (director) of TS Adyar (Foundartion) England, a whistleblower says, she was forced to do so for alleged misappropriation of funds.
At least the resignation is confirmed by online sources with the appointment of Elizabeth Crofts as her successor here on April 23. Also, Ms. B.' page has been deleted from the TS website, but there is a snapshot in the web archive.
But it gets worse and I say clearly, these are unconfirmed RUMORS, the whistleblower goes on to say (correspondingly):
Allegedly, the matter has not been reported to the police or the UK Charity Commission. TS England's funds belong to its members and failure to report to the police may implicate TS itself in a fraud. It is a legal requirement to inform the UK Charity Commission of such incidents, otherwise TS England's charitable status is at risk.
If you believe that, you would have to inform the police and Charity Commission in London. I have reached out to TS-Headquarters with a request for comment. Finally I say: It can be a normal resignation and the rest of the story a hoax, so please assess the situation yourself, I don't believe it without further confirming information. And most importantly, Ms. B. is completely innocent of any wrongdoing in this matter until a court of law finds otherwise.
And now let's move on to the news:
For our German readers: The first time a German translation of the first edition of The Secret Doctrine is available, thanks to the TS Pasadena German Section. You can Download as PDF (or purchase it as print-version) here.
A few days ago International Theosophy Conferences published on it's YoutTube channel the lectures of this year's ITC, have a look.
There was a short statement of the EUST "...However, it does not endorse or support ANY INDIVIDUAL Theosophical Lodge. It does not by any means authorise any Lodge to publicise an event using the words: “With the Support of the European School of Theosophy.” EUST also published the programm (pdf) of the Int. Theos. History Conference in october.
TS Adyar Netherlands Youth Gathering took place in June Treading the Path to Self-Transformation an you can find insights on Theosophy Foward and subsequently also the International Seminar: Exploring the Powers in Humankind but about which no further information can be found, maybe so far.
TSPL Blavatskyhouse published a short news about Working for peace and ULT London about Libraries for Research, Lectures & Children’s Activities
The (in this quarter 17) digital magazines of the various societies, which sometimes also contain news, can be found as always in the magazine section, take a look, it's worth it.
TS (Adyar) in (North-)America published a lot of videos on it's YouTube Channel, see f.e. also the video-section. Also Theosophy Dehli, ULT Bethesda, Wellington Theosophical Society and TOS USA have active Youtube-Channels.
Also, some new international events have been announced, to be found in the events section.
Theosophy has to INCULCATE ETHICS; it has TO PURIFY THE SOUL ... It is not by studying Occultism for selfish ends, for the gratification of one's personal ambition, pride, or vanity, that one can ever reach the true goal: that of HELPING SUFFERING MANKIND.
The TS Point Loma Blavatskyhouse
publisher, 01 / 2022 (pdf)
The TS (Pasadena) Australasian Section
publisher, June 2022 (pdf)
TS (Adyar) in Australia
publisher, June 2022 (pdf)
The Aquarian Theosophist
United Lodge of Theosophists (ULT)
The TS Adyar Indian Section / Bombay Federation Bulletin
The TS Adyar HQ
Articles from Theosophical sites
BlavatskyTheosophy.com (ULT London)
- Blavatsky on The Mystery of Soma
- The Lunar Pitris and Solar Pitris
- Karma & Reincarnation in Jainism, Buddhism, and Sikhism
- Sakshi: The Unchanging Inner Witness
- Understanding Our Seven Principles
- Hymn To Dakshinamurti
- Blavatsky on Alchemy, The Chemistry of Nature
- The Three Lines of Evolution
- The Seven Kinds of Dreams
- The Apostle Paul: Initiate and Occultist
- Theosophy on Jesus
- The Theosophy of Dr. Edward Bach
- Kabbalah: The Mystical Side of Judaism
- Sri Aurobindo, Raja Yoga, and Theosophy
- HPB TURNING IN HER GRAVE?
- 2022 Movie: The Day of the White Lotus
- Wesak Day 2022, Buddha's Birthday
- Modi visits the final resting place of Lord Buddha on Wesak Day
- CLAIMS ON ADYAR ESTATE
- TS Claiming Theosophy as a Religion!!!
- BRICK AND MORTAR MODEL GIVING WAY TO DISTRIBUTED MODEL
- WANT TO SEND YOUR KID TO NADAR SCHOOL AT ADYAR?
- Nadar Mega Deal may jeopardize TS Tax Exemption
- GREAT SACRILEGE
- More News from Theos Talk within the Topic of the quarter-Section
- How to Study Theosophy
- Mini-interviews Juliana Cesano
- The Golden Thread – Part two, part one
- Good News from Italy
- Good News from YOUNG THEOSOPHISTS
- Recalled experiences surrounding death: More than hallucinations?
- On Being Human
- The Noble Eightfold Path - 4, 3, 2 and part 1
- In the Light of Theosophy – Expectations
- A note from Joma Sipe in Portugal (June-July 2022)
- Seek Out the Way: Experiential Reflections on the Inner Life
- Living In Kali Yuga
- Notable Books 54
- Who can change the World?
- Freeing the Mind: Why Philosophy Is Important
- I can’t get my head around it
- Small Acts with Great Love
- Youth can di it
- Theosophy Generally Stated
- Disbelief in human evolution linked to greater prejudice and racism
- The Culture of Music From a Theosophical Standpoint
- What happens when we die? (In the Light of Theosophy)
- Blavatsky on the Pagan Origins of Easter and Egg Symbolism
- An Interview with Doctor Strange 1/3 (William Q. Judge)
- An Interview with Doctor Strange 2/3 (Dr. Franz Hartmann)
- An Interview with Doctor Strange 3/3 (Helena Blavatsky)
Montreal Theosophy Project
The Angelic Kingdom of Nature | Bill Keidan
TOS Legacy Interview with K. Sivaprasad
Legacy Interview With Kathy Gann
Adepts and the United States
Theosophy - GNOSTICISM
Diagram of Meditation by HPB
ITC2022-EN-02: Examining Theme: Theosophy-Discovering the Eternal Sun of Truth. What does it mean?
ITC2022-EN-03: Truth is Beyond All Teachings
TC2022-EN-01: Opening International Theosophy Conference 2022
ITC2022-EN-06: Living the Truth: Universal Unity
Women and the Theosophical Movement: Pioneers, Visionaries, Leaders | Susanne Hoepfl-Wellenhofer
The Origins of Gnosticism | Richard Smoley
The Timeless Wisdom of the Jains: A Path of Harmony and Harmlessness | Jeffery D. Long, Ph.D.
The Ancient Science of Sound to Heal Body and Mind | Dr. Kulreet Chaudhary
Theosophical Classic 2008 | Mystical Body, Man of Light: The Lost Secret of the Cosmic Christ
If the ʺspirit,ʺ or the divine portion of the soul, is preëxistent as a distinct being from all eternity, as Origen, Synesius and other Christian fathers and philosophers taught, and if it is the same, and nothing more than the metaphysically‐objective soul, how can it be otherwise than eternal? And what matters it in such a case, whether man leads an animal or a pure life, if, do what he may, he can never lose his individuality? This doctrine is as pernicious in its consequences as that of vicarious atonement. Had the latter dogma, in company with the false idea that we are all immortal, been demonstrated to the world in its true light, humanity would have been bettered by its propagation.