Theosophy

Exploring Theravāda's connections to other paths - what can we learn from other traditions, religions and philosophies?
Post Reply
User avatar
Will
Posts: 1020
Joined: Tue Dec 30, 2008 11:26 pm
Location: So Cal

Theosophy

Post by Will » Sun Mar 12, 2017 7:37 pm

Much as Blavatsky, Olcott & Judge, the founders of the Theosophical Society in 1875, have been sneered at for mangling the Dhamma, they did open up light from Eastern windows for many thousands since that time.

Here is G. de Purucker, a leader of the TS from 1929-42, on a good spiritual attitude to have, whatever ones path:
There is one thing I learned when I was a boy, and I learned it well, and it has been one of my best friends
ever since. It is that I can learn from everything, and that if I allow a single day to pass without increasing my
store of wisdom, without enlarging and enriching my inner life, by however small an increment, that day is a
lost day in my life. Too many of us are asleep; we sleep and dream. We dream dreams, and all too often these
dreams are evil dreams, for they are the upsurgings of the lower, personal, easily self-satisfied ego of ours.

But others of us dream visions of incomparable beauty — and I mean not merely physical beauty, but beauty
of any kind: spiritual beauty, intellectual beauty, ay, even beauty of wondrous nature around us. And every
such new envisioning of a marvel awakens us by just so much. Oh, how we sleep, and are forgetful of what
we are and of the richness around us which is ours for the taking, ours if we will take it! For there is naught
that stands in the way of taking except oneself. There are none so blind as they who refuse to see; none so
deaf as they who refuse to hear; and, on the other hand, none so wise as they who meet every new experience
in life's wondrous adventure with the feeling: there is an angel behind this for me. I must discover him; learn
what that angelic messenger is trying to tell me. Every experience is such.
Wholesome virtuous behavior progressively leads to the foremost. -- AN 10.1

SarathW
Posts: 9958
Joined: Mon Sep 10, 2012 2:49 am

Re: Theosophy

Post by SarathW » Sun Mar 12, 2017 8:37 pm

Sri Lankan Buddhist pay lot of respect for Colonel Olcott for his contribution to reviving Buddhism in Sri Lanka.





https://dhammawheel.com/viewtopic.php?f ... 9685&hilit
“As the lamp consumes oil, the path realises Nibbana”

ToVincent
Posts: 431
Joined: Tue Aug 30, 2016 6:02 pm
Contact:

Re: Theosophy

Post by ToVincent » Sun Mar 12, 2017 11:19 pm

For me, theosophy is quite the opposite of Buddhism. It is much closer to late brahmanism (post-Buddhist), versed in the angiras unauspicious part of the atharva "veda"; with its lots of magic.
Buddhism can be summed up by the following sutta: https://suttacentral.net/sn35.238 ; whose telos is far from wanting to remain in the superpowers' realm, dealing with matter & energy - within time & space.

"India's great misfortune was that the excercice of will (tapas,) has been oriented towards the "I"; instead of the non-"I". That this exercise of will has been interiorized; when it should have been externalized. And that this exercice of the tapas had its results in ascetism, instead of being a tool to take possession of the world, and of the other men."
said once a great pundit on Indian philosophy, and a theosophist.

Gee whiz! - what a difference between the elevated man and the one who pretends to be so. And what a contemptuous attitude towards the ascetic.
I think this guy did not quite understand the issue at stake. Head upside down, I suppose.
I suppose this is his kamma. And each one's his.

There can be no "I", no "mine", no "self" to obviate; as long as the "external" steps in.
Where in scheol did Buddha speak about "taking the richness around" - experiencing beauty, etc.?

Supernatural just means what it means. Above nature - not beyond it (out of it). Iow, still in the kamma loka. http://www.accesstoinsight.org/ptf/dham ... /loka.html
Some working for the Mara's world; some for the Brahma's world; some for the Unborn.
.
In this world with its ..., māras, ... in this population with its ascetics.... (AN 5.30).
------
We are all possessed - more or less.
------
And what, bhikkhu, is inward rottenness? Here someone is immoral, one of evil character, of impure and suspect behaviour, secretive in his acts, no ascetic though claiming to be one, not a celibate though claiming to be one, inwardly rotten, corrupt, depraved. This is called inward rottenness.”
SN 35.241
------
https://justpaste.it/j5o4

binocular
Posts: 5602
Joined: Sat Jan 17, 2009 11:13 pm

Re: Theosophy

Post by binocular » Mon Mar 13, 2017 8:34 am

ToVincent wrote:Where in scheol did Buddha speak about "taking the richness around" - experiencing beauty, etc.?
Maybe those theosophical references to beauty, wonder, angels, safety is their way of expressing the idea of goodwill.
Every person we save is one less zombie to fight. -- World War Z

User avatar
Will
Posts: 1020
Joined: Tue Dec 30, 2008 11:26 pm
Location: So Cal

Re: Theosophy

Post by Will » Mon Mar 13, 2017 3:48 pm

Theosophy as taught by Blavatsky is not Buddhism, nor any other spiritual path, but it is sympathetic to all.

Here is Dennis Lingwood giving a little history of the friends of Dhamma:
In the 1870S the greatest orator in Sri Lanka's history, Megethuvatte
Gunananda, sought in his lectures to undermine the missionary influence
there. The Christians organized a huge public meeting at
Panadura, determined to silence once and for all this formidable antagonist.
Gunananda was challenged to meet in open debate the
most learned in their ranks. Alone, but undaunted, he faced the
united forces of Christian orthodoxy, and so impressive was his eloquence,
so powerful his reasoning, his opponents were shamefully
defeated. The repercussions of this historic debate were felt even in
America, and a few years later, he received a letter from an American
colonel and a Russian lady of noble birth expressing satisfaction at
his victory and acquainting him with the formation of the Theosophical
Society at New York in 1875. With the letter came two
bulky volumes entitled Isis Unveiled. Gunananda immediately entered
into a regular correspondence with the two foreign sympathizers,
and started translating their letters and extracts from Isis
Unveiled
into Singhalese. These translations circulated all over
the island, and before long the names of H. S. Olcott and H. P.
Blavatsky were repeated with wonder and delight in every Buddhist
home.
Sangharakshita, Anagarika Dharmapala, a Biographical Sketch (booklet),
Kandy, Ceylon, Buddhist Publications Society, 1964, 18-20. Sangharakshita,
was born Dennis Lingwood.
Wholesome virtuous behavior progressively leads to the foremost. -- AN 10.1

User avatar
Mr Man
Posts: 3358
Joined: Tue Oct 04, 2011 8:42 am

Re: Theosophy

Post by Mr Man » Mon Mar 13, 2017 10:46 pm

Are you a Theosophical Society member Will?

User avatar
Will
Posts: 1020
Joined: Tue Dec 30, 2008 11:26 pm
Location: So Cal

Re: Theosophy

Post by Will » Mon Mar 13, 2017 11:01 pm

Mr Man wrote:Are you a Theosophical Society member Will?
Technically yes, I am a member of three TS groups. I say 'technically' because my first and best refuge is Buddha.

Theosophy is very helpful for many people is getting an overview of many paths. Blavatsky emphasized altruism, rebirth, karma, noble ethics, goodwill to all beings etc. Her hope was that the members would examine their own religion more deeply and look for the mystic element.

Cannot say that was a rousing success since 1875, but it was not a total failure either.
Wholesome virtuous behavior progressively leads to the foremost. -- AN 10.1

chownah
Posts: 7473
Joined: Wed Aug 12, 2009 2:19 pm

Re: Theosophy

Post by chownah » Tue Mar 14, 2017 1:56 am

I have had some small amount of contact with theosophical society members and supporters and what I have seen tends to support the view that the theosophical society is a force which promotes non harm and compassion. I have seen no reason to fault the society other than the reasons of those obsessed with their own dogma.
My exposure has been limited so maybe the society is actually a steaming mass of ugly funk and it was very well hidden. :tongue:
chownah

justindesilva
Posts: 798
Joined: Wed Jul 27, 2016 12:38 pm

Re: Theosophy

Post by justindesilva » Tue Mar 14, 2017 11:12 am

Colonel Olcott and others the founders of theosophicsl society wanted to create a person to carry on with the future of theology. They found I Krishnamurthi and took him to England where he was further educated.
He later broke away from the theosophicsl society and became the founder of Krishnamurthi philosophy based on Buddhism. There are many who follow J. Krishnamurthi successfully in the West.

User avatar
Aloka
Posts: 5789
Joined: Wed Jan 21, 2009 2:51 pm

Re: Theosophy

Post by Aloka » Tue Mar 14, 2017 1:27 pm

Will wrote:.

Here is Dennis Lingwood giving a little history of the friends of Dhamma:....... ........
........
Sangharakshita, Anagarika Dharmapala, a Biographical Sketch (booklet),
Kandy, Ceylon, Buddhist Publications Society, 1964, 18-20. Sangharakshita,
was born Dennis Lingwood.
Isn't that the Sangharakshita (Dennis Lingwood) of the Friends of the Western Buddhist Order/ Triratna sex scandals?

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sangharakshita

Here's a recent article about him from The Guardian: "Fears mount over scale of Buddhist sect sexual abuse"

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2017/ ... s-lingwood

.

User avatar
SDC
Posts: 4397
Joined: Mon Dec 14, 2009 11:08 pm

Re: Theosophy

Post by SDC » Tue Mar 14, 2017 2:06 pm

Aloka wrote:
Will wrote:.

Here is Dennis Lingwood giving a little history of the friends of Dhamma:....... ........
........
Sangharakshita, Anagarika Dharmapala, a Biographical Sketch (booklet),
Kandy, Ceylon, Buddhist Publications Society, 1964, 18-20. Sangharakshita,
was born Dennis Lingwood.
Isn't that the Sangharakshita (Dennis Lingwood) of the Friends of the Western Buddhist Order/ Triratna sex scandals?

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sangharakshita

Here's a recent article about him from The Guardian: "Fears mount over scale of Buddhist sect sexual abuse"

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2017/ ... s-lingwood

.
Good to know!

User avatar
Nicolas
Posts: 805
Joined: Wed Jul 02, 2014 8:59 pm
Location: Somerville, MA, USA

Re: Theosophy

Post by Nicolas » Tue Mar 14, 2017 5:58 pm

Related: Charles Henry Allan Bennett aka Bhikkhu Ananda Metteya, member of the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn, associate of Aleister Crowley, and then Theravada Buddhist monk.

chownah
Posts: 7473
Joined: Wed Aug 12, 2009 2:19 pm

Re: Theosophy

Post by chownah » Wed Mar 15, 2017 1:18 am

Nicolas,
I don't see how it is related. Can you explain?
chownah

form
Posts: 677
Joined: Mon Nov 21, 2016 3:23 am

Re: Theosophy

Post by form » Fri Mar 17, 2017 8:00 am

Will wrote:
Mr Man wrote:Are you a Theosophical Society member Will?
Technically yes, I am a member of three TS groups. I say 'technically' because my first and best refuge is Buddha.

Theosophy is very helpful for many people is getting an overview of many paths. Blavatsky emphasized altruism, rebirth, karma, noble ethics, goodwill to all beings etc. Her hope was that the members would examine their own religion more deeply and look for the mystic element.

Cannot say that was a rousing success since 1875, but it was not a total failure either.
Is Cw leadbeater a child abuser?

I have his book on chakras. It is very well written, it will be a shame if he has made these all up.

As for blavasky, a lot of people do not believe she could have travelled undisturbed in Tibet at that time as she would have been arrested for suspected spying activities.

form
Posts: 677
Joined: Mon Nov 21, 2016 3:23 am

Re: Theosophy

Post by form » Fri Mar 17, 2017 8:06 am

Nicolas wrote:Related: Charles Henry Allan Bennett aka Bhikkhu Ananda Metteya, member of the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn, associate of Aleister Crowley, and then Theravada Buddhist monk.
Haha, bennett supposingly know magic. He can blast someone with his magic stick. N all these accounts were written by crowley, n this guy needed money badly. Crowley claimed that he was the incarnation of a famous taoist figure and he "translated" taodejing (I dun think he know Chinese at all), he also know some Egyptian secret rituals.

Post Reply

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Majestic-12 [Bot] and 20 guests