Re: Theos-World Taking offense, seeking revenge
Jan 09, 2009 08:11 AM
by Morten Nymann Olesen
Dear Paul and friends
My views are:
I am happy to read this email.
My views are, that I myself aught to be better at formulating myself, so not to be disrespectuful to those who for some reasons are lacking the open compassionate heart, that makes them immune in letting themselves being hurt when reading disrespectful words written in e-mails.
I will work on it.
I will how ever also refer to what H. P. Blavatsky said in the book The Key to Theosophy.
Because it is here I find a great difference between theosophists and a great number of those would-be spiritual groups around the globe.
H. P. Blavatsky said in the Key to Theosophy:
"IS IT NECESSARY TO PRAY?
ENQUIRER. Do you believe in prayer, and do you ever pray?
THEOSOPHIST. We do not. We ACT, instead of talking."
The word is emphasized by me and HPB.
----- Original Message -----
Sent: Thursday, January 08, 2009 10:23 PM
Subject: Theos-World Taking offense, seeking revenge
During the runup to the November election, an article appeared in
Slate that made me think of Theosophists:
Not just the regular dustups here at theos-talk, but also the latest
organizational brouhaha in Adyar and Wheston, reminds me that
Theosophists are extraordinarily disrespectful to one another. Not
just those in one organization attacking those in another, but within
the Adyar TS even more so. I wonder if people realize just what kind
of impression of the entire movement is created when people snark one
another in a public forum like this. Bad enough when mere members do
so; far worse when an elected national leader makes a big display of
arrogance and aggression.
Yet at the local level over two decades I never noticed any
difficulty whatsoever for Theosophists agreeing to disagree. There
was always a great diversity of views in any group I ever attended,
in several states. And no one to my recollection got all offended
that someone else had a different estimation of various authors. But
at the national and international levels there seems to be far less
of that live-and-let-live attitude. I renewed my TSA membership
after a ten-year lapse in 2008, but was hugely relieved to see it
expire last week.
The conclusion of the linked article is worth considering here.
The "empty boats" notion would be well applied to most of the
disputes here. Simply to express one's opinion is to risk personally
offending someone else, even if there was no such intention. And the
person thus unintentionally offended will often deliberately
retaliate with a personal attack, as if the other person's opinion
somehow invades their personal space.
Like any body of literature, the Theosophical writings contain mixed
messages. You can use HPB the same way Christians use the Bible, to
justify both sides of every dispute. Pedro's quote indicates that it
is untheosophical to take offense at differing views and seek revenge
on those who express them. Morten's quote indicates that it is a
theosophical duty to do so. HPB said both; you choose which HPB to
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