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Re: theos-talk Orlando Lodge - Action needed quickly

Apr 24, 2011 10:22 AM
by MKR

In all lodges which hold a charter, there is in the bylaws a clause that in
the event of withdrawal of charter, all assets go to the Section.

Hence when charter is canceled, the Section will take action to take over
the assets and legal proceedings may be necessary.

In Orlando case, when the charter was cancelled, American Section hired a
lawyer and filed a lawsuit to recover all the assets of the lodge - real
estate, money in the bank etc. We do not know how many thousands of dollars
has already been spent on lawyers.

Orlando lodge in turn got a temporary restraining order and appealed the
decision of the American Section to the International President as provided
by the rules of TS. International President, decided to attach the lodge
directly to Adyar for a period of two years. This was a surprise to American
Section. Betty Bland, the head of the American Section personally discussed
the matter with Radha when she visited Adyar in December and Radha has not
reversed her decision.

To-date, American Section has not spelt out specific charges against Orlando
lodge as to why the charter was canceled. Also, no official from the
American Section personally visited the lodge to inquire and discuss the
issues and try to resolve them, instead of unilaterally withdrawing the

The lodge is 75 years old and functioning all these years due to many
dedicated long time members. So the membership in the American Section is in
the dark about the real reasons and charges against the lodge. The
credibility of the leadership of the American Section is at stake. Only way
they can convince the members of the American Section is to disclose all the
correspondence on the matter as well as explain why no one in the
administration cared to visit the lodge and fix the problem.

One more complicating issue is the interference of the Florida Federation.
In the matters of the lodges, Federations are not supposed to interfere or
try to influence the Section to close lodges. Why they did this, the
Federation has to explain to the members of American Section. Interference
by Federation is a serious issue as it may have some other political factors
in play. The Section need to publicly reprimand the Federation Officials
instead of trying to use the Federation to justify withdrawal of the

Out of all that is going on in the Orlando matter, the leadership of the
American Section does not come out smelling like a rose. Something is not
right. Only the leaders of the American Section can attempt to fix it with
full transparency. Let us see if they rise up to challenge and deal with it


On Sun, Apr 24, 2011 at 11:42 AM, <> wrote:

> mkr,
> What I wonder about is the statement that the Orlando Lodge was being
> punished for being a "Whistle blower". What was the issue that made Orlando
> a "Whistle blower"? Also the idea of autonomous lodges is invalidated by
> being un-chartered and the property confiscated by a higher level such as
> Adyar. It seems if they were really autonomous they would have their charter
> lifted but still remain a autonomous lodge that no longer could claim to be
> a chartered Theosophy Lodge under the National or International hierarchy
> but still remain a "lodge " formed by people who created it where it existed
> and the possessions and property that was created by them would remain in
> their direct possession harmless from claim or theft by any. If Three
> independent people living anywhere can form a lodge and create it through
> their own efforts and financial exertions wholly independent of finances and
> other helps from any outside why should anyone have a right to steal what
> they created? Just an American view for two cents lol!
> John
> ----- Original Message -----
> From: "MKR" <>
> To: "theos-talk" <>
> Sent: Sunday, April 24, 2011 7:43:52 AM
> Subject: theos-talk Orlando Lodge - Action needed quickly
> From the early days of TS, it was very clear that lodges and Sections are
> autonomous so long as they do not violate any of the rules of TS. In the
> Mahatma Letters, this issue was discussed by the Founders and specifically
> highlighting the fact that even Founder-President Olcott had no right to
> interfere with the functioning of the lodges. This wise policy was in place
> from day one, because this provided widest discretion to lodges to carry on
> the mission of Theosophy and TS does not become a top-down controlled
> organization with a set of fixed beliefs every lodge should pursue.
> However, to provide due process in case of unwise actions of withdrawing of
> charters to members and lodges, the decisions of Sections can be appealed
> to
> the International President so that each side can present facts supporting
> their side of the story and help the International President to either
> concur or reject the decision of the Section.
> When a due process is provided for, many times the outcome may not be liked
> by one side or the other. Heads of Sections are used to make decisions
> without being questioned by anyone are in a state of shock when their
> decisions are reversed. This is what has happened in Orlando case. Should
> we
> not give the International President the right to examine the facts
> presented by both sides and come to an independent decision? From the tone
> and content of the account in the Messenger, the Section does not seem to
> think so.
> If the Section has legitimate grievance that the decision of the
> International President is wrong, the simplest way to demonstrate Sectionâs
> thinking is to make public all the documentation submitted to the
> International President and it can be done quickly and at no cost. They can
> be scanned and made available on Internet. If the Section needs help in
> doing so, volunteers are standing by.
> This step will bolster the trust the members have in the Section
> leadership.
> At the current time, this should be done due to recent past experience the
> members had during the electioneering to defeat Radha Burnier with the
> unfounded allegation that she is physically and mentally sick, in spite of
> three independent physicians from two continents certifying her fitness.
> The
> conclusions of physicians have been vindicated by the fact that she has
> been
> traveling and lecturing in India since the election. Last year, she even
> participated in the Rome World Congress and visited Krotona on the way back
> to India. Added to the above, the ill fated ultra secret attempt to
> disenfranchise all members in the election of the President and the members
> of General Council seize the Presidency and make the President a puppet did
> not add to the credibility of the American Leadership.
> The Orlando ball is clearly in the Sectionâs court. Doing nothing will not
> help either the movement or the American Section.
> [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
> [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]

[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]

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