Jan 30, 2009 07:52 PM
Recently, a member raised the interesting question. On many topics dealing
with the organizational matters, why there are not many to and fro messages
which would look like a dialogue; and many messages are posted by a very
small number of participants. I am trying to diagnose possible reasons for
this phenomenon. Here are some:
1. The elected leaders, since the public availability of Internet, continues
to live in their cocoons as if Internet is not there. As an example, over
the last decade, only two General Secretaries have participated in
theosophical maillists. One died in an accident and the other was almost run
off after making off the cuff remarks none on Internet would tolerate.
2. For newbees, Internet is a totally new experience and many are
intimidated, because of fear of how the rest of the participants will react
to any of their posts. So they lurk and see what is going on.
3. Internet is a most level field, without discrimination of caste, creed,
color, national origin, beliefs, sex and sexual orientation, wealth,
scholarship, titles, elected or appointed leadership positions, etc. etc.
Most have not seen an environment like it. Hence they are dazzled and
hesitate to say anything openly afraid of being ruthlessly criticized.
4. If one is dependent on the TS organization for their room and board, any
open display of independence contradicting official line will land them in
the streets literally. (It happens in every organized setup.) We need to
pity these people who are silenced.
5. There are many who use the platform the organization provides, so that
they can travel & lecture under the auspices of the organization. You loose
it, if you do not toe the official line. This is no different from most
6. There are authors who have published thru the publishing arm. If you
deviate or dispute the official line, your previleges will disappear for
7. There are those who expect favors from the organization and its leaders,
and they are scared of consequences of not towing the official line. After
all they are human.
8. It appears that there are many long-time leaders and lecturers who
believe that the Karmic Law will set things right, so why say something
which may bring something bad to them now or in a future life.
9. Of course there are those who neither have the time nor the inclination
to get into exchanges.
If you filter all the readers for the above reasons, what is left is a few
who have the time and interest, independence and courage to write and post
messages. So no one should be surprised.
The proof of the pudding is in eating. Just ask the leaders, elected and
unelected, ask them what their honest experience due to the message postings
on Internet. You will find that they would confirm that they track the
message traffic and were affected by the traffic.
Lastly, where do you go, if you want up-to-date news on the happenings in
the theosophical organizational front? It is the unmoderated independent
maillists such as theos-talk.
So keep subscribed and read the postings and participate if you can. Long
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