discussions; re theosophical novitiate
Dec 29, 1994 03:34 AM
by Jerry Hejka-Ekins
LD> First let me clear up one thing quickly, because we're
talking past each other. At 1 point in your post you said
something that I understood to mean that l'affaire CWL was a
pimple on something much deeper & fundamental concerning the
split in the TS's. That's what I wanted you to clarify off the
That isn't quite what I meant. I offered the opinion that the
Leadbeater affair has become a veil obscuring much deeper
dynamics that cripples the effectiveness of the TS (and
indirectly all TS's) in performing their intended role in the
world. Why do you want a clarification off the net, as opposed
to one the net?
LD> As far as catching mud slung at the ghost of CWL, I'm done
with that game.
Your subsequent quote from Hugh Sherman's pamphlet suggests that
you are not.
LD> As Martin Euser said, (I don't remember the exact words, but
the gist, I do) why don't we get into something more productive?
In principle how could anyone not agree with Martin on this?
However it is very easy for Martin to make this remark,
considering that he is involved with Dutch Point Loma tradition
theosophy, where Leadbeater had no direct historical role.
Leadbeater is primarily the Adyar Society's karma--for better or
worse, and the controversy doesn't go away no matter how members
and leaders protest against it being raised. To say that we
should "get into something more productive" is a lot like telling
an obsessive compulsive that if he stops taking a bath twelve
times a day, he will be cured of his compulsion.
LD> What would I propose April to do. Make up a format for us to
operate out of....
I gave a copy of your last post to April. Stand by...
LD> John Crocker writes before he had his people tackle the
controversial subject, he had them relate to each other in
I never received that post. Would you kindly relay it to me?
LD> Eldon Tucker talks about there being a conflict in the
philosophy taught by CWL. That would be a valid topic for
discussion to me. I don't even know where the conflicts are, but
I'd like to find out. I'm just as curious as my Chouchou.
That is a very tedious subject. Margaret Thomas did a study on
that in 1924--it is an 87 page mss. A more recent one was done
by Ray Morgan, which is available. I have about a half dozen
original twenty page mss here exploring different aspects of the
subject. The problem is that to discuss the teachings of say,
HPB compared to the teachings of CWL, requires that one has a
thorough knowledge of each of the teachings. The only people I
know of on this net (beside myself) who have taken the trouble to
do any extensive comparative studies is Eldon Tucker and Daniel
Caldwell. There may be others of course, but my point is that
such a dialogue would have to be carried by those with a
background in the different schools, and it would take extensive
explaining to communicate the points of contention to the rest of
the readers. My guess is that your curiosity and Chouchou's may
quickly turn to boredom on that one.
LD> I'm not so sure that we can profitably discuss CWL's psychic
investigations, unless some of us are real well trained psychics
who can compare what he writes about with their own first hand
If one wanted to discuss them, one could compare his "scientific"
observations to what is currently known in science. It might
also be interesting to compare his clairvoyant observations to
others--for instance, Andrew Jackson Davis.
LD> Jerry you say "... the alienation between members in the
Adyar Society alone is more than enough to keep us busy". If
that could be done in a way that'll help the factions, ok, but
I'm afraid that this one'll land up being another mud slinging
Life is a risk too.
LD> Towards the end you refer to the interchange between Paul &
me. I'm not planning on saying very much about it anymore. As
far as I'm concerned, the matter is concluded. I thought I was
putting up conciliatory peace flags here & there, but never got
Last message I saw from Paul on the matter, he explained that he
had been out of town for four days. That message sounded pretty
conciliatory to me.
LD> I just now reread Paul's post entitled "in Search of
Agreement". Apparently, he very honestly thought he was
presenting the 2 sides fairly. Well, just let me tell you that
not one iota of my side is represented in it. What he wrote is
biased & one-sided. He's weighing his side against his side.
What's the use?
If I were you, perceiving that Paul may have "very honestly
thought he was presenting the 2 sides fairly", I would take it as
a positive sign that he was trying to bring about a conciliation,
and try to work with that. I'm not trying to take a superior
position here. I blew up at Paul a few months ago on the net
myself, so I know what it is about. However, I also regret not
handling the situation better. For whatever it is worth, I think
the best communicator on this net is Art Patterson. Read his
posts, and note that he always begins by acknowledging what his
correspondent says, and stays very close to his own experiences
when communicating his ideas. I'm not suggesting that he be
imitated, we all have to write from what comes out of ourselves,
in order for it to bu authentic, but I think we all can pick up
some good tips from Art's modeling. Good communication is a
skill. We learn, we screw up, and hopefully we learn by our
AP> Thank you for your very interesting and informative response
to my posting. I am struggling a bit with where to start
reading. I have been reading in Steiner but after being the
Steiner new group for a month or so, I realized that the material
they were interested in seemed totally irrelevant to me. For
instance, things like how long until the next reincarnation of
individuals seems too speculative for me. My interests lie in
working toward an organizing center for my various interests in
Anthroposophy has its own direction--in many ways very different
from Theosophy. Personally I find their practical applications
very much worth looking at--such as Eurythmy, Biodynamic
gardening and the Waldorf schools. What did they decide on for
the reincarnation question?
AP> My background is in Christian history and spirituality but I
have been deeply informed Jungian and symbolist thought as well.
I have made a spiritual transition, whereby, I no longer consider
myself a "Christian" at least not in the sense of exoteric
understanding. Surprising, I suppose, since I was a minister for
seventeen years. I appreciate gnostic thought even though I am
not too familiar with it. My academic background is a Masters
Degree in English Literature and the study of Spirituality. My
interest in exploring Theosophy is along the line of connecting
to a larger paradigm that will allow me to explore all
spiritualities with freedom. Presently I teach courses in such
diverse subjects as The Use of Tarot Images in Western Mystery
Tradition, Dante's Divine Comedy as a Means of Personal Growth,
Jung and the Shadow Side of God.
Sounds like we are kindred souls in many ways. I will be
finishing my course work in the Spring for a Masters Degree in
English Literature, and already planning the thesis stage.
Though religion was a taboo subject in my childhood, and I knew
nothing of the concept, that void brought me into a study of
comparative religion and philosophies all through my adult life.
I think Theosophy already allows the freedom to explore all
spiritualities--the only limitations are those we put on
ourselves. I used to read Jung about 30 years ago, but was a bit
young to really appreciate him, but I learned the basics. The
background helped in doing Jungian criticism in the English
program. Currently I've been splitting my head open for the last
two years studying Jacques Lacan. He is Neo-Freud, but very
different from Freud. I don't feel that I've mastered his ideas
well enough to evaluate him yet, but his influence has already
contributed to a major paradigm shift in society--for the better,
I think. I used to do Tarot and Astrology in the sixties and
seventies. Very rusty now.
AP> I thought this might give you a clue as to where I am coming
from. My question is how to select a strand Theosophy. I enjoy
the perspectives I read in Quest magazine. I am not interested
in dogmatics of any sort and I guess I appreciate good theory as
a basis of right action. I am naturally inquisitive and like to
see what is at the root of thoughts and not just the surface. I
call my approach a Hermeneutic of Suspicion. Not in a cynical
sense but in a methodological one.
If there was a program available at this University, I probably
would have majored in intellectual history. Perhaps I'm
projecting, but I feel that you are coming from much the same
spirit--"what is the source of that idea?"; "how has that ideas
changed?"; who was influential upon whom?" HPB's writings are in
this spirit, and that is probably how I came to appreciate this
approach. You might try Preston's ~Abridgement of The Secret
Doctrine~ and see how it feels. It's only a quarter the size of
the original, and I think representative of the whole.
AP> I have no idea as to whether I am a "Theosophist". I do
agree with the three objects as listed in the pamphlets. My
access to getting materials in limited. I see no Theosophical
Group here in Winnipeg. I was thinking of joining the Wheaton
Group and they say they take memberships from Canadians. What
you said about Adyar does sort of concerns me however. I also
detected a bit of legalism in the emphasis on ES and
vegetarianism. I have spent years embroiled in sectarian
Christian politics and while I expect that Theosophical
organizations are human enough to have their own weakness, I
anticipate a slightly different approach - more tolerant I hope.
Do me and yourself a favor and write a letter introducing
yourself, your background, your interests, and mention my name
2307 Sovereign Crescent S.W.
Calgary, Alta. T3C 2M3
He is a very, very, very dear friend and is the former General
Secretary of the Canadian Theosophical Society. He may know
people in your area. If not, he is still a very valuable person
for you to know, and I think the most knowledgable person in
Canada. Trust me on that one.
Theosophical organizations have their warts and politics just
like to Churches--there is no getting away from it. The problem
is that people join perfectly good organizations and ruin them
(just kidding--or maybe half kidding). Anyway, there are four
major theosophical organizations to look into before making a
decision. There is also a pretty good group of us who work
outside of the bounds of the organizations, though we may or may
not hold memberships in them.
AP> If you have any information on how these aspects of authority
were used please send it my way. It isn't that I have this huge
authority issue in a psychological sense, although that is never
far from any of us, it is just that I think the idea of taking
full responsibility to what you bind yourself to is central to
I'll send you a copy of that pamphlet. I think it will go a long
way to giving you a lot of insight as to what is behind the
recent discussions. Please e-mail me your address.
AP> I would like to get a hold of this book, as well as others.
You mentioned you deal in books is there any possibility of me
ordering through you? I am interested in Ellwood's book on
Theosophy and Paul Johnsons Masters book, especially if that book
can be found in soft cover as he suggests it can. In any case,
if you can send The Key... or tell me where I can order from I
would much appreciate your help.
Yes, I try to carry everything in Theosophy. I'll e-mail you the
prices for the books you mentioned.
Welcome to Internet. Yes I'm familiar with the Yeats interview
in the ~Irish Theosophist~. But keep me in mind, I'm sure you
have found things I missed. Glad you're on. We need a
knowledgeable resource on Buddhism.
[Back to Top]
Dedicated to the Theosophical Philosophy and its Practical Application