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Friday, December 2, 2011

What about Theosophy?

Theosophy (from Greek theosophos, “one wise about God” or “divine wisdom”) is an esoteric philosophy and movement tracing its modern origin to Helena P. Blavatsky (1831-1891), also known as “Madame Blavatsky” or HPB.  In 1875 she founded the Theosophical Society  in New York with Henry Steel Olcott (1832-1907).  Four years later, the Society moved to India where it grew quickly, eventually becoming the fountainhead of the “ancient wisdom” doctrine within Western occultism.
Key Writings:
Blavatsky’s The Secret Doctrine (1888), Isis Unveiled (1877), and The Key to Theosophy (1889).  Periodicals include Sunrise.
Key Beliefs:
“Ancient wisdom” teachings hold that the world’s religions (Greek, Egyptian, Christian, Gnostic, Buddhist, etc.) originally taught the same core truths, but were corrupted by the development of organized religion.  The oldest scriptures (the Hindu Vedas) contain the kernel truths and the others carry parts of this core: monism, reincarnation, yoga, evolution of consciousness, psychic powers, etc.
          Invisible to us, the evolutionary progress of Earth has been directed for thousands of years by a seven-tiered hierarchy of Masters or superior beings.  Some were originally human, died, and are now “Ascended Masters” (also known as the “Great White Brotherhood”); others are still alive; some never had human embodiment.  The Masters reveal themselves to a few select souls, either in remote parts of the world (China, Tibet) or through psychic communication, giving guidance to those who are prepared for it.  Blavatsky claimed communication with several of these so-called Masters, as did most of her immediate successors.  Jesus is considered the fifth incarnation in the Aryan race of the Christ, or supreme “World Teacher.”  Theosophy rejects Jesus’ atonement and states that man brings about his own salvation through repeated incarnations; every human being is a potential “Christ.”
Occultic Practices:
          Yoga and meditation are employed in spiritual development; psychic powers (including “easy access” to the mystic “Akashic Records”), astral travel, and other paranormal abilities may follow, depending on the individual.  Astrology and some other occult practices are considered “true sciences.”  An inner circle, known as the “Esoteric Section,” engages in secret meditation practices to attune its members with the Masters.
Watch for:
·       Related theosophical institutions, including the Theosophical Society (Altadena, California); Theosophical Society in America (Wheaton, Illinois), with its Krotona School and Quest Books; and the United Lodge of Theosophists (Pasadena, California).
·       Famous followers, such as children’s authors L. Frank Baum (The Wizard of Oz) and Frances Hodgson Burnett (The Secret Garden), and poet W.B. Yeats. 
·       Theosophy-inspired groups, such as the Krishnamurti Foundations, based on the teachings of Jiddu Krishnamurti (1895-1986); the Arcane School of Alice Bailey (1880-1949); Anthroposophy; the Agni Yoga Society of Nicholas Roerich (1874-1947); the “I AM” movement; and the Church Universal and Triumphant of Elizabeth Clare Prophet (1939-).
Taken from the pamphlet: Christianity, Cults, and the Occult by Rose Publishing.

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