Re: Theosophy is a Coined Term
Jun 10, 1996 02:45 PM
by Jerry Schueler
>Again, we already have a ~Theosophy-means-this~. It does not mean
>~reincarnation~; it means ~what HPB says about reincarnation~. It does not
>mean ~karma~; it means ~what HPB says about karma~.
You hit the nail on the head here. HPB, bless her heart,
gave out a lot of exoteric material, which was fine at the time, but
is stale today. Americans are a lot smarter than 19th-century
Hindu or Buddhists students, and demand a lot more than karma
as reward-and-punishment. For myself, I loved it at first, then
digested it, and then hungered for more, found it, and am now
dissatisfied with the exoteric material in the TS literature.
As I have said many times, there is a whole lot more to karma
and reincarnation than is found in the TS literature.
I have no problem with defining Theosophy as a collection
of core teachings and then list the headings. Even giving
out HPB's version is OK, providing it is acknowledged as
exoteric (which it is)--I think that this is what Eldon has in mind
when he talks about mining for gold, etc. But if we limit
Theosophy to only HPB's versions then we are in trouble,
because then the truth seeker will never get beyond the
exoteric shell (and many may not anyway, but the fact that
it is, after all, only an exoteric husk, should be given to
all truth seekers however far they care to tread the Path).
>Capital-T ~Theosophy~ (for specific doctrine) is already here. You do not
>have to do a thing. Indeed, you ~cannot~ do a thing. For example, you
>cannot from personal theosophical insight say something about reincarnation
>which is slightly inconsistent with HPB and expect that your view will be
>considered ~Theosophy~. It won't.
Richard, this was exactly my problem, and I just about quit
the TS because of it. Only having Peacenet kept me within the fold.
Peacenet, and now theos-l, provide a venue for my thoughts and experiences
that I cannot get within any TS. Even Quest probably wouldn't have printed
most of my essays, especially the one on morals and ethics. Now, most
of the time HPB's statements are so vague as to allow multiple
interpretations, and I can use them just fine. The problem is that I often
want to say things that she never discussed, and as Eldon, Jerry HE and
others have suggested, her omissions are generally construed as
negative opinions. In other words, if she doesn't mention it, it probably
is not so. This is not the case *every* time, but too often for me.
For example, how does memory interface with karma? Can we
eliminate karma, and if so, how? Where does psychology fit into the
whole reincarnation cycle? What about developmental tasks over the
whole reincarnation cycle? And so on. There is a whole world of material
that she simply never discussed.
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