Jun 25, 1996 08:59 AM
>Hooray for YOU! That's right on! Joy Mills is an arrogant bitch! I agree
>with everything below as well.
My first real memory of Joy was perhaps twenty-five or more years ago, now.
She was passing through Madison and gave my wife and I a call because she
had noticed our names as new members. Could she stop by for a minute? OK.
We were somewhat poor and peculiar in those days. Sandra was finishing her
Ph.D. at U.W., and I had the word ~Ubermensh~ on the bumper of my V.W. van
for some reason. Joy and someone else showed up at our door. We moved aside
some of the squalor, let them have the two chairs we owned, and sat
more-or-less at their feet in hillbilly embarrassment.
The president of the American Section was right in our living room, and the
signs of our sins and sloth--from overflowing ashtrays to candy wrappers to
cheap sex novels--occupied 100% of every available horizontal surface. Youth
was our only possible excuse; Joy accepted with enthusiasm.
We served our visitors Lipton tea in cups which were clean but not above
suspicion, and the four of us talked gloriously for a couple hours of many
things--high and low. Joy tried to interest us in something she called ~the
Theosophical Philosophy~ (~Theosophy~ was not yet the synonym for "Core
Teachings" in those days), but she seemed genuinely interested in hearing our
perspectives on theosophy as well.
After she had left, Sandra turned to me and said, "You know, it was like Joy
Mills was treating ~us~ like the honored guests rather than vice versa."
Yes, that is how she had treated us, all right. In fact, that is how she
treated me in all the years which followed. This is significant, I feel,
because later it became obvious that I was not her "cup of tea" as far as
(T)theosophy was concerned. Still, throughout all of her presidency, she
encouraged me and gave me many speaking and writing opportunities. Not only
did Joy seem to have a gracious finesse in carrying out her responsibilities,
but she also had a highly developed sense of fair play as well.
All in all, I am almost tempted to describe Joy in the same way I once heard
her describe Clara Codd: "one of Theosophy's saints."
Naturally, though, I am inclined toward hyperbole. Maybe Joy is a saint;
maybe not. Nonetheless, I notice that she is scheduled to speak at the
convention, and for some not fully definable reason something seems to be
prompting me once again to drive down to Wheaton to hear what she has to
say--especially in what must be the late-afternoon of her life.
I mention this up-coming appearance of Joy's just in case anyone wants to
take advantage of one of the perhaps few remaining opportunities to call the
refined, loving, and indefatigable old crusader for Theosophy an "arrogant
bitch" to her face. . . .
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