May 27, 1997 11:29 AM
by Ken Malkin
Sorry to offer my penny's worth so late in the discussion, but in Miami
we have wrestled with the problem of the lodge's monetary needs over the
We now simply accept as a donation what ever is voluntarily collected
from the participants. Whether from each of the fourteen different
groups who meet each week in the lodge, or the members, or the public at
large. All groups if presented to the public are done so no charge. From
Astrology to Zen, these group participants seek what is of interest to
them. The facilitators place in the cash register under the generic code
of 'donation', what ever is collected from each meeting.
Likewise, our Sunday program, offered to the public, is free. Donations,
in the form of a basket being passed is quick, efficient and affords
fifty or so people each week an easy way to donate. If someone has not
donated, or is unable to donate, no lodge member has or would comment
on it. While some presenters are nationally known, afield of the TSA
presenters, non of the public speakers are afforded an honorarium.
More than one hundred of our members have agreed to this system. We
believe we are custodians of one process which may be used for the
refinement of the human condition. The building, the library, the
bookstore, even the kitchen while now located in a facility far afield
of the original sight is nonetheless a legacy of the work of others.
When we have need for a specific improvement, e.g. a computer network
for the library and bookstore, a garden retreat etc. our fund raising
efforts are increased. Members contribute, we have had social nights,
pot luck dinners, etc. We find we may not get what we want, but we do
get what we need (oh, how I cringed at saying it). Other than the waning
ES influence at the lodge, after their attempt to have our assets
brought under the control of the TSA, our system works well.
Bart stated "Not all dedicated Theosophists are ES members, but all ES
members are dedicated Theosophists". The recent past run up of
political nonsense at the national level, promulgated by the ES
hierarchy tried and true, has raised the awareness of all members in
South Florida. A little individual effort will confirm what we have
found. ES constituents are dedicated to the ES first and finally, not
This is my opinion. It is however mirrored by the observations and
experience of many Miami members and Florida Federation members.
Further, the direction of the ES is confirmed in the work of Tillet,
Wood et. al. . The allegiance of the "Esoteric School" is ultimately
sworn to the head of the ES not the Theosophical Society.
Several participants in this forum have pointed the way to information
that has opened the ES to many questions. All of these (questions) still
remain unanswered after having been asked directly of the ES members or
the TSA Board (I believe all but 1 member on the Board is an ES member).
Excuses are offered and justifications proffered for the TSA and the ES
to hide behind a corporate veil. Might not this in the end afford the ES
and the TSA little defense when their actions are questioned in light of
existing IRS statutes. All Board minutes, votes and membership lists are
open to members upon written request. That is the law whereby the TSA is
tax exempt, not a convenient fiction.
The mindless following of local "ES Wardens", representative of the
International and National groups and the secret organizations within
the ES prove themselves to be separate to the original stated aims of
the founders of the TS. Whether there are two or three ES members in a
lodge or other group, distress, disharmony and imbalance is promulgated
by these members.
Each time there has been a problem of freedom at our lodge or in the
Florida Federation, there is an ES Warden or minion causing dissention.
They have used all manner of manipulation to attain control. Ego bound
and form infused, the ES had reached it's zenith before members
questioned the Esoteric School's true aims. When their goals were seen
and understood things changed. It was just control, not good for the
sake of good. Just control, of stuff, of minds, of resources, of
anything that came within their purview.
In closing, we have found that if the lodge exists with the desire to
serve all and sustain the three declared objects, membership and
resources will be forthcoming. When we cast out bread upon the water, we
have yet to get back soggy bread.
My peace profound
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