Society in Detroit
Frequently Asked Questions
Is Theosophy a religion?
No, Theosophy is the universal spiritual
heritage of all humanity – past, present and future. It is the core teaching at
the heart of all religious traditions and philosophical systems of the world. It
is referred to as Ancient Wisdom, Perennial Philosophy, Wisdom-Tradition,
Esoteric Philosophy or Wisdom-Religion.
Is there a spiritual authority in the TS?
No. The Society encourages a free and fearless search for Truth and for this reason freedom of thought is one of the central principles in its work. There is no opinion, no doctrine, no teaching which is binding on any member. The Society has an international President, who is elected by the membership worldwide and who shares his or her views with the members as a fellow-student of Theosophy. The Society encourages its members to enquire for themselves into the deeper aspects of life.
Is the work of the TS of an intellectual nature?
Theosophy is Divine Wisdom, and wisdom is different from knowledge. One of the core principles in Theosophy is the undivided oneness of all life. It means that deep down, beyond appearances and opinions, all life is one. When such a principle is meditated upon with attentive awareness, its understanding expresses itself as compassion, selflessness, service and reverence for all expressions of life. The same is true of every other theosophical principle, like karma, reincarnation, evolution, the multidimensional levels in the human consciousness, and others.
Does the TS encourage activism among its members?
The Society as such doesn’t because it has a
neutral platform and doesn’t affiliate with any other organization, group, or
cause, save its own Objects.
Is the TS a New Age organization?
The Society is not a New Age organization
because it doesn’t encourage any sort of psychic practices so common in New Age
circles and doesn’t make its members rely on so-called ‘seers’ or on past-life
therapies, to mention only a few. The Society was founded to 'help seekers to
move towards theosophy by studying and assimilating its eternal verities.
What practices do Theosophists follow?
All members of the Theosophical Society decide what practices and manner of living are appropriate for them, but many theosophists follow a certain regimen of life conducive to spiritual realization. They meditate regularly to gain insight into themselves as a service to humanity. Some choose to be vegetarians and avoid animal products. They support the rights of all human beings for fair and just treatment. They respect differences of culture and support intellectual freedom. Theosophists are not asked to accept any opinion or adopt any practice that does not appeal to their inner sense of reason and morality.
What theosophists do in their meetings?
Meetings typically consist of a talk followed by discussion or the study of a topic. Theosophy has no developed rituals, although meetings may be opened and closed by brief meditations or the recitation of short texts, and some groups use a simple ceremony for welcoming new members. There are no privileged symbols or icons in the theosophy, but various symbols from the religious traditions of the world are honored. There are no clergy or leaders, other than democratically chosen officers.
How do theosophists regard churches and religions?
Theosophy holds that all religions are expressions of humanity’s effort to relate to one another, to the universe around us, and to the ultimate ground of being. Particular religions differ from one another because they are expressions of that effort adapted to particular times, places, cultures, and needs. Theosophy is not itself a religion, although it is religious in being concerned with humanity’s effort to relate to ultimate values.
What is the message of theosophy today?
Theosophists believe that we are a part and
parcel of the totality of existence stretching from the planet Earth to the
farthest reaches of the cosmos in every conceivable dimension. When we realize
our integral connection with all other human beings, with all other life forms,
with the most distant reaches of space, we will realize that we cannot either
harm or help another without harming or helping ourselves.