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Re:Theosophy as a religion

Aug 28, 1995 08:03 AM
by Eldon B. Tucker

>Ann: "The Alice Bailey group and the Arcane School has always seemed
>separate from the Theosophical Society, as least in my experience at Olcott."
>Rich: This is quite true, they are separate organizations, but the
>Theosophical Society is not itself "Theosophy." As you no doubt know, there
>are many organizations and associations for the study and promulgation of
>Theosophy. I include the Alice Bailey students because they include
>themselves as Theosophists.

There's always a problem as to where to draw the line and say that
Theosophy stops here and outside this circle is non-Theosophy. Wherever
the circle is drawn, some are left "outside".

We faced that problem with the Theosophical Network, in the mid-1980's.
The decision was made to draw the line at the mainlain theosophical
groups, with those giving highest recognition to HPB and the traditional
source writings. This embraced the Adyar T.S., Pasadena, ULT, and many
smaller European theosophical groups. It excluded as non-Theosophical
the Bailey, Steiner, etc. groups. Individuals could be listed in the
network directory with interests in Bailey, etc., but we did not include
organizations or groups that specifically called themselves Bailey groups,
Rosicrucian, Masonic, etc.

We can probably agree that the source writings of Theosophy are theosophical,
like those of HPB and the Mahatmas. (Even some will disagree with this,
of course!) Branching out from them, we find greater disagreement.

The writings of Leadbeater and Bailey differ from the original theosophical
writings. We've talked on this list about some of the differences in the
past. There are perhaps a few dozen key ideas where there are differences
in the Teachings.

There are different ways to handle these differences. Some deny that
they exist. Others choose to say that the later writers offer a better or
more modern presentation of Theosophy, and that HPB and the Mahatma Letters
are imperfect presentations. Which is true? The ultimate test of Truth is
within, and cannot be argued with the finest of logic and external proofs.
We have to study the core concepts of Theosophy, to come in touch with its
"thought currents," and awaken inwardly in order to get a proper feel for
the true nature of Theosophy. Until then, it's like the Mahatmas have said,
that the deeper truths will sound like "insane gibberish" to those that
have not come to them.

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