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Nov 04, 1995 02:29 AM
by Jerry Hejka-Ekins


My first reaction to this post was "huh?". There's been a lot of
talk on the list about how new-comers feel about TS and how the
books needs to have the language updated and how the educational
materials need to be redone. The above conversation strikes to
the heart of the matter. I'm sure that those with a few years or
more than a few years of study can into this stuff and understand
the lingo but the new guy would be running for the ARE.

You are right this stuff looks foreboding and most
students of theosophy get it all mixed up anyway. But it is not
impossible--it only requires a lot of mental effort. HPB
mentioned in the introduction to the ~Key to Theosophy~ that for
the mentally lazy theosophy would remain a mystery. Her warning
suggests to me that she was very aware that it would take a real
concerted effort in order to understand the Theosophical
teachings regardless of one's education level. It is not the
vocabulary but the concepts that are difficult. One can learn
the foreign and unfamiliar words and still have difficulty
grasping the concepts. I believe that the Study of The Secret
Doctrine is in itself a spiritual exercise--and any exercise
requires effort.

I dropped out of Akbar Lodge in Chicago when I had the chance to
join a study group that began with Introductory Study Course to
Theosophy. Globes? Rounds? I didn't have clue and stayed with
the study group until a couple of weeks ago when ran out of
people. I went back to Akbar Lodge more confident but still
sure that I don't know anywhere near what the others do.

I how do you know that they had the teachings right either?
My own experience is that one has to put aside every
preconception and struggle with what the author is saying without
assuming that she is saying the same time as another author.
However I have found that few students do this--instead they
begin with the assumption that every theosophical author is
saying essentially the same time as any other--only in different
ways. This assumption is deadly.

Have you noticed how many people involved with TS have teaching
degrees at universities? A friend told me that most people read
on the level of a third-grader. Where does that leave TS?

Not in a very good place. But one does not need to have
gone to a university or even college to be able to read and
understand say ~The Secret Doctrine.~ HPB wrote that anyone of
average intelligence can do it. It is that so few are willing to
make the effort. Instead they look for "easier" books to
explain the teachings. The problem with the easier books is that
the authors don't necessarily understand the teachings either.

Good post.

Jerry HE

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