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The way Ahead - 2.

May 29, 1997 02:40 PM
by Einar Adalsteinsson & A.S.B.

The Way Ahead, by Adam Warcup - part 2.

When we contrast this with a networked approach to organisation a number of
important issues become apparent. First, the actual  reason why the
organisation exists becomes of major importance. Our first declared Object
that of forming the nucleus of universal brotherhood. is not why most of us
become members. We want to know what Theosophy is, and how it can be
practised - an entirely educational need which can only be supplied by other
people. In this context
it is instructive to recall H. P. B.'s words. 'The Theosophical Society was
formed to let it be known that such a thing as Theosophy exists...' Is this
not entirely educational?

Second the pyramid becomes inverted. The members who form the base become of
paramount importance. The rest of the Society's infrastructure exists solely
to provide an educational service. Third, there is no need for a formal
structure. The real work of the Society only takes place whenever a group of
members meets. It is they who decide on the programme, whether it is to be a
lecture,  seminar, a study group. The only justification for a network
organised Society holding assets, whether they be financial or real estate,
is for agreed educational purposes. There is, perhaps, a need for a property
in London where administrative tasks can be carried out and educational
events can be staged. But do we need an estate in the country?

If we were to adopt such a networked approach, we would first have to accept
that the members in their entirety are the only ones to set the ground
rules, and to appoint people for executive roles. If other members are to be
elected to office, it must be the entire membership who so elects them.
There would be no loom for an electoral college such as the National Council
with powers  to elect a General Secretary.
The same principle would apply to deciding on 'matters of broad policy'
which are currently decided on by the National Council, not by the whole
membership. Equally the constitution and rules governing the Society's
administration would be in the hands  of the many rather than the few. The
functions carried out by at the Headquarters, such as accountancy,
membership recording, library maintenance etc. would be seen as support

The old hierarchical pyramid becomes inverted. The wide base is now at the
top of the diagram because it is acknowledged that the totality of the
membership is where the power comes from, not from a post or committee. The
only justification for a centralised headquarters is to provide  educational
support services for the whole Society. Arranging lectures, seminars, study
groups etc. around the whole country is a goad example of such an
educational service. I would like to see this fundamental  issue become the
subject of a debate within the whole section This might lead to a national
referendum being held to agree in principle that such a radical
restructuring of the English Section be implemented. 1 would  be very
interested in your comments.
Adam Warcup

The writer is a former General Secretary of The Theosophical Society in
England and internationally acclaimed lecturer on core theosophical subjects

Grettings - Einar
With LOVE to you all.

Einar from Iceland.
Let's change the world to the better,
by each of us changing ourselves,

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