Copy of: Copy of: Theos-L Branch in Cyberspace
Feb 11, 1995 12:56 PM
by Sy Ginsburg
>>From Sy Ginsburg, Miami & South Florida Branch (TSA)
Paul Gillingwater suggested that "this mailing list is in some
strange way the first theosophical branch in Cyberspace. I
suspect HPB would approve. I wonder if any of the parent TS orgs
would accept the formation of a branch with members all over the
Eldon Tucker responded with "You're probably right that most
organizations would have difficulty having us as one of their
lodges. There's too much freedom and diversity of ideas. Every
group would find things said that they would find outrageous.
How many groups tolerate the "outrageous" within their own
organizations? At this point, I think the time has come where we
could confer upon ourselves the honorary title of a lodge.
Perhaps we would start calling ourselves the "theos-l lodge."
I think what is going on here is great. Whether it is called a
Theosophical Branch in Cyberspace or the Theos-L Lodge, I think
it is really useful and am glad to be a subscriber. For those
who do not belong to any organized branch(lodge) it is
particularly good. But even for someone like me who belongs to
an organized branch (Miami & South Florida TSA) the contact with
and almost immediate imput of others from around the planet adds
a dimension that we do not have in a local branch. At the same
time, I find the personal contact with other people and
especially the friction and rubbing up against each other that
occurs in the ordinary course of participating in branch work to
also be very valuable. Because theosophy, in my view, is not
just about increasing one's level of knowledge. It is also about
raising one's level of being, and for this we need to see how we
are, and rubbing up against others helps us to see ourselves.
So, I am glad to be able to participate in both. Maybe we can
also rub up right here.
Re Parent Organizations: my experience as an active branch
officer in dealing with a parent organization is positive in so
far as the parent (TSA) being supportive of what our active Miami
& South Florida Branch does. I don't know what would be
considered "outrageous" but certainly anything within the scope
of the 3 objectives would not be "outrageous" in my view and that
is a pretty broad mandate. In fact, in one of the study groups
at our branch "Theosophical History" we have been reading and
discussing Old Diary Leaves. The early theosophists had an
extremely wide view of what they wanted to investigate and that
tradition prevails at our branch with full support of the
national TSA, so far as we are led to believe. I put out on this
list previously, a schedule of our various courses and study
groups and we have groups in everything from Gurdjieff to Star
Trek to Developing your Psychic Abilities to the Urantia Book.
We have 5 different Theosophy study groups too, and lots more.
To quote from or remind of what the TSA national descriptive
pamphlet says " The Theosophical Society maintains the right of
individual freedom of thought for every member.... no doctrine,
no opinion, by whomsoever taught or held, is in any way binding
on any member, and no teacher or writer has authority to impose
opinions upon others. All members are urged to defend and act
upon these fundamental principles and also fearlessly to exercise
their own right of liberty of thought and of expression within
the limits of courtesy and consideration for other...The Society
therefore does not commit its members to any special observances
or attitudes....etc., etc.
I cannot speak for experience with any other parent theosophical
organizations, but in so far as the Theosophical Society in
America is concerned, I would not want it to "get a bad rap"
because in my experience it is a really good organization, and
supportive of the broad mandate as stated in the 3 objects and
the national literature. This does not mean that I am advocating
a formal affiliation with TSA or any other group, although John
Mead wrote to me earlier that "this list evolved from the growth
of Theos-L, an informal discussion list created as an 'Electronic
Study Group' for the Theosophical Society in America."
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