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Planetary Family

Feb 11, 2006 07:45 AM
by carlosaveline cardoso aveline


I agree with most of it -- and would underline the idea of "cousins".

Open hearts and open minds should not be too difficult.

People change, and we can all change for the better every day,


From: "kpauljohnson" <>
Subject: Theos-World We are family-- but what kind?
Date: Sat, 11 Feb 2006 15:11:12 -0000


Following up Adelasie's comment that we are all in this together,
like it or not, I congratulate her on belonging to the one
Theosophical organization that has never (AFAIK) been the subject of
feuds, denunciations, etc. here.  The main reason that my interest in
communication with Theosophists has increased of late is that I have
joined an organization that has roots intertwined with those of the
TS.  Although I retain fondness for Cayce and good memories of local
ARE study groups, the ARE as a whole never felt like a spiritual home
to the extent that the Theosophical movement did.  And its politics
are even nastier than those of Adyar!  In time I might share more
about my new affiliation and its relationship with the TS, but theos-
talk does not feel like a safe place to do so.  It has definitely
made me more aware of my kinship with Theosophists-- but that is a
mixed bag since Theosophists tend to focus most of their antagonism
on spiritual kinfolk rather than strangers.  I would consider
Anthroposophists, Arcane school members, Fourth Way followers, and
many other groups with Theosophical roots as spiritual cousins.  But
fear that if they came here in a spirit of openhearted fellowship,
they would be furiously attacked and driven away.

Here are two extreme examples of kinship being a source of antagonism
or friendliness.  Last night I attended a community event
commemorating a turning point in the American Revolution that
happened here.  They had period music before the main program, and a
soloist gave a heart-stirring rendition of "Johnny's Gone for a
Soldier."  Her last name was given as Haskett.  My grandmother was a
Haskett and the name is so uncommon that I have never encountered
anyone with it outside my family circle.  So afterwards I hastened to
meet her and her husband.  Saying "my grandmother was a Haskett"
sufficed to induce a warm smile from both.  When I asked if his
people were from northeastern NC he said no they were from Indiana.
Instantly I knew that there was an extremely painful memory tied up
in our kinship.  The Hasketts were Quakers who due to their
opposition to slavery were pretty much driven out of the state
between 1820 and 1860.  Those who stayed abandoned the Faith,
sometimes motivated by the desire to hold on to their slaves when the
Quaker authorities ordered them to do so on pain of disfellowship.
Those who kept the faith were forced into exile.  Imagine all the
broken hearts and family ties of that era! I said something
like "your people chose Quakerism over slavery, and mine made the
wrong choice."  Acknowledging the deeply painful family divide, but
not considering it a cause for any feeling other than mutual empathy.

When spiritual rather than physical kinship is the connecting link,
it can often be a source of far greater antagonism than would be felt
if there were no kinship at all.  The most extreme example I know is
the Baha'is, where followers of rival offshoot sects are
called "covenant breakers" and loyal Baha'is are ordered to shun them
completely.  To the extent that if one spouse becomes a CB, the other
one must abandon him/her immediately or be declared CB too, because
it's a spiritually contagious disease.  Ditto, one would have to
disown one's child and throw them out of the house if they joined a
rival group.

Is the way Theosophists feel and react towards members of related
organizations more like the way people feel towards their distant
cousins, or the way Baha'is feel towards covenant breakers?  It
varies from case to case, but alas common ancestry tends to be more a
marker for antagonism rather than friendliness within this "spiritual

It doesn't have to be that way.  As Adelasie's spotless record here
demonstrates :)


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