Some musings on the theosophial Movement -- Metaphysics and Physics
Mar 19, 1999 02:33 PM
by W. Dallas TenBroeck
Thought on Theosophical metaphysics can lead us to thinking about
the great Theosophical Movement as it may be traced, now and in
There is a great difference between the Theosophical Movement and
any Theosophical Society. The movement is "moral, ethical,
spiritual, universal, invisible save in effect, and continuous."
A society or a "body" however constituted is formed for
theosophical work, and is a visible organization. It is the
resultant, the effect of a cause.
It is a kind of "machine" for the conservation of energy and
putting it to use. It cannot be said to be universal, or
continuous. It is brought into being by those who want to
cooperate, to study, to inquire of each other, and to offer help
to others. But even so, it is only an "outer shell," and must
change eventually, and, as the great underlying spiritual
movement compels such changes. And that comes under our
The Theosophical Movement, being continuous, is to be found in
all times and in all nations, though perhaps working under other
names. But it can be traced by the principles, all of which are
common and are: universality and brotherhood, teaching the laws
of the universe and personal assistance to the needy, it is
always to be found inspiring study in all departments of nature,
and therefore it is the foe of ignorance and bigotry wherever
those are found. It stands for the freedom of the individual and
recommends cooperation as the strongest basis for individual and
"Wherever thought has struggled to be free, wherever spiritual
ideas as opposed to forms and dogmatism have been promulgated,
there the great movement is to be discerned." Wherever
Brotherhood has been advanced, there the great movement thrives.
At times it is well-known and then at other times its thread of
life is sustained by a few valiant individuals who pursue its
practices and try to inspire others to find and use them also.
To worship an organization, is to worship a "form." Worship can
easily turn into dogmatism and an imposition of singular views.
Our portion of the Theosophical Movement, spearheaded by Mme.
Blavatsky, strove to overthrow such a view and practice. To
worship an organization, however wonderful as to aim and objects
can lead to a nullification of brotherhood at the first strain.
HPB declared self, that it were better to do away with the
Society than to forget and destroy brotherhood.
It has been said that the Source of all beings is ONE, and that
the Goal is also that ONE. Put in practice the "Path" varies and
is shaped by each Pilgrim-soul. We are all at some one step in
our own evolution where we are presented with one or another of
the steps (it is our own Karma that does such presentation) that
can lead us towards our chosen goal, or, if neglected, can delay
We must remember that it is our own HIGHER SELF (the ATMA within,
or rather, "above" us) that is luring us ever on to success. And
this Atma, the Higher Self, is one with all the Higher selves of
that vast multitude of intelligences of every degree that are the
uncountable "children," the "sons" of the great Mother. This
figurative Mother some represent to themselves as our UNIVERSE.
And the "Father" is the ever-present but never to be identified
CENTRAL SPIRITUAL SUN from which all force, all life radiates on
every one of us, from Atom to Galaxy.
The "Bhagavad Gita" is a book that can be inspiring. It can give
us food for meditation for many a day and night. In the night
its ideas are digested and returned partly the next day to the
mind. It is said to be the study of Adepts. How does Karma
operate. We see it dimly. If we direct ourselves to the
struggle of overcoming our past Karma the struggle intensifies
and is tremendous because the old habits of thought and action
resist the alteration. The load of old errors rushes forward and
events sued each other with great rapidity seeking to unsettle
our resolve. The whole fabric of our life groans and rocks, and
as said in ancient books, one may go through the appointed course
of life change in 700 births in 7 years or in 7 minutes. But
always the imperishable SELF - the divine Ego - survives.
In the Gita (chapter 12) we read: "Freedom comes from a
renunciation of self-interest in the fruit of one's actions."
Self-interest is always a matter of thinking. We can have no
"attachment" for anything we do not think abut, nor can we have
dislike for a thing we do not think about. If we find that
confronting us are things that are right and proper to be done,
we should do them, regardless of whether they promises or failure
as mean measure those things. Krishna says that final
emancipation immediately come from such renunciation, thus, He
places "complete renunciation" as the highest goal.
He also states that "renunciation" is superior to meditation.
This is because it is by "meditation on the end in view," that
renunciation comes. It comes from an understanding of our own
immortality, of the immortality of all beings in nature, and of
the immutability of the great law of Karma which envelops every
being and harmonizes the fact of our joint living in this world.
We all depend on the rest. We share and draw and exchange our
lives with them constantly. In this may meditation is superior
to knowledge because "right-knowledge" produces
"right-meditation." And, Knowledge (of facts and events and
potential results) is better than "constant practice" because it
is practice that begets knowledge. A complete chain.
I think this is one way in which we can trace the merging of
physics into metaphysics, of the life we lead in our every-day
being with that of the Mind that can soar way beyond the humdrum
and the ordinary - which have their own place and deserve our
attention and guidance.
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