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Re: historical and doctrinal

Oct 24, 1995 10:32 PM
by Eldon B. Tucker

Jerry S:

>>What we really need, if it would be possible, is a delicate balance
>>between dogma and doctrine, with people in charge of our organizations
>>that are trained in the Philosophy and able to apply the wisdom of
>>Solomon to the organizational problems that arise at times.

>What we really need, it seems to me, is experience, which
>means living the teachings rather than just thinking about them.

I agree with this too.

>When we live them, dogma evaporates. But we still need doctrine because
>our human mind still has a need to explain/express our experiences
>in terms of visual and analytical models that we can understand and

*For us* dogma vanishes. But I was talking with regard to dogma being
the required minimum beliefs that would constitute Theosophy. The
dogma would be those beliefs that are taught on theosophical platforms
that are required of someone to call themselves a Theosophist. The
doctrine would be those teachings that are presented as Theosophy,
but not required to be "believed in" in order to be a Theosophist.
Perhaps the dogma would consist of the three objects of the T.S.?

>People "in charge of our organizations" should be living examples
>of theosophy.

True, but who *decides* which people are living examples, and which
are pretenders or self-deluded? There would need to be some form of
certification or adoption of the credentials of a candidate T.S.
leader if that was the criteria for their position in the society.
Sometimes things happen by self-assertion, where we can take someone's
claims or reject them. Consider James Long. He *asserted* his
successorship and his right to head the Point Loma T.S. That
assertion was accepted by some and rejected by many others. With
every transition of leadership the same problem will arise. And
we have the problem of how to participate in a society unless we
accept the claims of the authorities at the top.

>>The study of karate involves training and
>>practice sessions. The study of Zen involves sitting zazen. And
>>the study of Theosophy involves awakening the inner teacher and
>>the sense of the divine in our everyday life; e.g. the approach
>>to chelaship.

>Exactly! If we all did this, many organizational
>problems would disappear. Also, we would be more
>tolerant and understanding of folks like JRC.

But how do we teach this? JHE would teach the ideas from the
books and leave the spiritual side to the individual to handle
on his self-initiative. I'd want something more than that, but
I'm not initially sure as to how to go about it.

>>I would not consider either one as superior to the other in terms
>>of "revelation", but would carefully consider any differences between
>>their writings, and judicate in my own mind any apparent conflicts.>

>You have mentioned this idea before. Can you give us one instance
>for such a conflict? I have read both and am not aware of any.

I can't think of any at the moment, but I'm not inclined to look
for them since I accept Purucker as a spokesman for the same Masters
that Blavatsky represented. I'm aware of what might be called
"extensions" like the idea of the Outer Rounds and the Circulations
of the Cosmos, but not of any area where there is a flat disagreement.
I'm open to having any such disagreement pointed out, since it would
be an interesting area to study. My comment, though, was not with a
number of conflicts in mind.

>If Purucker,
>or anyone else, expands on HPB without contradicting her, then why
>would this cause any problems with "the HPB student?"

It shouldn't, but it's a matter of authority. If I studied Blavatsky
and did not accord any special status to Purucker, I'd hold suspect
anything that he said that I did not read in HPB, unless I was able
to satisify myself that it was consistent. But I wouldn't make the
effort to read Purucker unless I was confident that his materials
were consistent with source Theosophy. If I believed that his writings
contained numerous conflicts with Blavatsky, and he might not know
what he's talking about, I'd decline to read and study him.

>Unfortunately, one can represent the Masters in one subject
>while totally screwing up another subject. So, our discrimination must
>go farther than that between people; we also need to discriminate
>between the writings of the same individual

It's possible for any representative of the Masters, for any Teacher,
to make mistakes and hold incorrect ideas. With a deep study of
Theosophy, we reach a point where we can, hopefully, tell the difference
between something that is correct and something that is in error. We
are being trained to think for ourselves, and we need to apply this
to everything that we study.

-- Eldon

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