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Membership in the New York Lodge

Jul 20, 1998 09:32 PM
by Bart Lidofsky

There has been some disucssion on other lists about the membership in
the New York Lodge of the TSA. It has gone through a number of changes
in the past few years, and there has been some misinformation spread
around. In particular, there was a rumor that a large number of members
had quit at once.

	For many years, the NYTS had a policy based on an assumption that the
Theosophical Society was the premier esoteric society in the world, and
that the world would beat a path to its door. We had about 90 members
when I started attending meetings around 1990. We started increasing the
public program and advertising, and membership grew to about 160.
Unfortunately, many of those members were paying only National or local
dues, but not both. When we coordinated with National, our on paper
membership shrunk to about 100 (creating the false rumors). However, our
growth has continued, and now we have about 140 real members. Part of it
has been increased advertising and an improved public program, as well
as an expanded members program (some programs, like our First Friday at
the Movies, were inspired by the success of the Miami Lodge), and a
members' newsletter which acted as an outreach to those members who
could not come to our meetings.

	We have recently taken a poll of all our members, and based on that we
plan to further upgrade our members' programs, including encouragement
of study groups among our members (we have had three successful ones in
the past year, on The Divine Path, Tarot, and Concentration). We have
decided to seriously advertise the Quest Bookshop, the major bridge
between the NYTS and the public. In mid-September we will be having an
open house; I'll post more details as they become available.

	Bart Lidofsky

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