The Theosophical Society in America

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The Theosophical Society in America

Our mission is to encourage open-minded inquiry into world religions, philosophy, science, and the arts in order to understand the wisdom of the ages, respect the unity of all life, and help people explore spiritual self-transformation.

Accessing Inner Vitality: Practical Ways to Use Energy for Health and Contentment

Saturday, February 17, 1:00 – 3:00 p.m.

Marilyn MitchellLearn practical ways to shift your own energy for greater health and well-being. By accessing your inner source of vital energy and soothing fears that block this energy, you can experience more peace and presence. 

Read more

 

 

Meditations for World Peace

Last Friday of the month, 7:00 – 7:30 p.m. CT

world peaceJoin us each month for a group meditation for world peace. This short program features a discussion regarding peace and unity among all people followed by a 15-minute World Peace Meditation. Each month will feature a different speaker and meditation and will represent a variety of spiritual and religious traditions.

Free and open to all!

 

 

Upcoming Online Programs

Meditation Practices and Perspectives
Sun Feb 18 @11:00AM - 12:00PM

Theosophical Teachings of Sri Madhava Ashish
Mon Feb 19 @ 9:00AM - 10:00AM

Mahatma Letters Reading and Discussion Group
Mon Feb 19 @10:30AM - 11:30AM

Nisargadatta Advaita Study Group
Mon Feb 19 @12:30PM - 01:45PM

Seeking the True Self
Tue Feb 20 @ 7:00PM - 08:00PM

Walking the Theosophical Path
Wed Feb 21 @10:30AM - 12:00PM

The Dream Circle
Wed Feb 21 @12:30PM - 01:30PM

Medical and Vedic Astrology
Wed Feb 21 @ 7:00PM - 08:00PM

The Dharma Karma Nexus
Thu Feb 22 @ 7:00PM - 08:30PM

Hidden Wisdom in the Holy Bible - Preface

PREFACE

In common, I believe, with the majority of Christians, in my early years I accepted the Bible as the inspired word of God, a direct message from Deity to humanity. Later, however, a more critical approach to the Scriptures revealed incredibilities and impossibilities, which both shocked and repelled me. Finding myself unable either to ignore these barriers to belief or to adopt a tolerant, uncritical acceptance of Holy Writ, two alternatives presented themselves. One was to discard entirely the orthodox concept of the Bible as an error-free and infallible source of spiritual wisdom and moral counsel, and the other to undertake a detailed study of the whole text. This latter course was chosen, and in this decision I was largely influenced by the discovery that many of the difficulties arising from a literal reading disappeared if portions of the Bible were regarded as allegorical.

Many erudite scholars, I found, affirmed that some of the authors of world scriptures deliberately concealed beneath cleverly constructed veils of allegory and symbol profound truths which they had discovered by direct research. This veiling was forced upon them because such knowledge would inevitably bestow very great spiritual, intellectual, psychical and supernormal physical powers. Since these powers were, and still are, subject to grave misuse—the evils of priestcraft and mental domination, for example—it became necessary to do all possible to make available to the trustworthy and to conceal from the profane the wisdom and knowledge of which the authors had become possessed. For this purpose they invented a special category of literature which differs from ordinary writing in that, with some historical fact as foundation, it is largely composed of allegories, symbols and certain key words, the whole constituting a cipher by means of which the Ageless Wisdom, theoretical and practical, was with reasonable safeguards made available to humankind. Such, I learned, were the origin, the nature and the purpose of the sacred language.

On making the discovery that parts of the Bible are allegorical, I began to apply the various keys—also to be found in ancient and modern literature on the subject—to many of the books of the Bible. The rewards—the resolving of many textual difficulties and the gaining of a philosophy of life, spiritual, intellectual and preeminently practical—have been so immeasurably rich that I have felt moved to share them in book form. This first volume is largely devoted to a consideration of the sacred language itself and the presentation of certain classic keys of interpretation, with some of the results of their application to scriptural stories, including especially the life of Christ. Although I have approached this task with all caution, naturally no claim is made for anything like a complete and error-free presentation. Care has, however, been taken neither to overstress a possible symbolic significance, nor to read into a narrative more than is inherent within it or was presumably present in the minds of the authors. Major interpretations have been both suggested by and compared with the writings of sages and philosophers, including Hebrew scholars. This comparison was made in order to test the validity of such an approach, and also its value in providing a key to the scriptures and mythologies of ancient peoples. The introduction gives a fuller exposition of the central idea and its applications to both theological and world problems.

One of the most readily available of such sources, I have found, is the literature of The Theosophical Society and, indeed, Theosophy itself so far as it has been made available to humankind. The Neoplatonists of the early centuries of the Christian era, notably Ammonius Saccus and his disciples, coined the word Theosophia, meaning “divine wisdom.” For them, Theosophy connoted the totality of the revealed wisdom and discovered knowledge allotted to humanity throughout the ages. The use of this source is mentioned here to explain, should it be necessary, the constant reference to theosophical literature, ancient and modern, and the adoption of some of its terminology. For both brevity and accuracy of presentation, Sanskrit words are occasionally employed, but in all cases, brief expositions of doctrines and full translations of Sanskrit words are given.

Thus studying the Bible, I have found that many of the difficulties and discrepancies which had until now proved so perplexing no longer exist. May those who are similarly perplexed and similarly seeking find in these volumes solutions of their problems and the restoration of their faith.

Geoffrey Hodson
Auckland, New Zealand