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Global Theosophy

En sand esoterisk stjerneport og stargate.
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(Theos-L Forum - det ældste teosofiske forum på Internettet.)


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Nogle få af de personer bag moderne Planetarisk Teosofi, som jeg er tilknyttet.
Medgrundlægger af moderne Planetarisk Teosofi:
H. P. Blavatsky (1831-91)
Helena P. Blavatsky
Medgrundlægger af moderne Planetarisk Teosofi:
Mahatma Morya (fødsel-?)
Master Morya
Esoterisk Chela af moderne Planetarisk Teosofi:
D. K. Mavalankar (1857-?)
Damodar K. Mavalankar

According to The Theosophical Society, 1875-1891 or possibly later.
(Translated into Danish by Morten Nymann - October 22nd 2023)

The word theosophy according to the dictionaries:

The word Theosophy has been rendered incorrectly in many dictionaries over the past century. One of the reasons for this is probably ignorance, or superficial historical research among certain historians, or among various journalists, or even ignorance among various spiritual seekers, including also members of theosophical-like organizations. Here is an example among many which unfortunately follow almost all other tone-setting dictionaries on the subject.

Merriam Webster - Dcitionary (Internet versionen):
"1 : teaching about God and the world based on mystical insight
2 often capitalized : the teachings of a modern movement originating in the U.S. in 1875 and following chiefly Buddhist and Brahmanic theories especially of pantheistic evolution and reincarnation
(See "Merriam-Webster Online: Dictionary and Thesaurus")

The Internet encyclopedia Wikipedia is perhaps one of the few exceptions, and is more accurate, and yet not, if you compare its content regarding the Theosophical Society and the word "theosophy", and then my words and quotes in this article. Quote from the English version: "Theosophy is a religion established in the United States during the late 19th century."

Men jeg vil overlade det til den enkelte læser selv at vurdere alt dette i det følgende.

In what follows, I myself will emphasize these words:
Theosophy is science in the broadest sense of the word. Theosophy is more precisely the science of wisdom as the individual perceives it. We will be able to see this in the quotes from the co-founders of the Theosophical Society further down in the text. Faith is not knowledge. Religious belief is not knowledge. It is important.

My own documented observations about the word - Theosophy:

I will now begin by presenting my own observations with regard to the word "theosophy" and its definition, here principally emphasizing that given by certain Neo-Platonists, and as I see it, also by the members of the Theosophical Society in its first years, especially in the period 1875-1891 or later.

Theosophy comes from the Greek term - theosophia, from theos, "god", "gods" or "divine", - and sophia, wisdom; variously translated as divine knowledge and/or wisdom, the wisdom and knowledge of the God or gods, or knowledge/wisdom of divine things. More precisely formulated as knowledge/wisdom about life both religious and non-religious. And not faith or blind faith about the meaning of life - which are really very uncertain daydreams about the truth about life. This can be seen or deduced by carefully reading the old texts that use the word. I claim that.

The word "theosophy" which was called "theosophia" and the like in Greek and Latin actually dates back as far as approximately the second century AD. The first to have put it down in writing is said to be Porphyry (234–305 AD), a well-known Alexandrian philosopher who belonged to the Neo-Platonic group. Certain later writers translated the word into the word "theology". But, this was undoubtedly not with the same original meaning presented by Porphyry and other Neo-Platonists. Later on, various authors used the word in the same sense as Porphyry. We are talking about people as diverse as a group of Renaissance philosophers such as Paracelsus in the 16th century, Thomas Vaughan, and Jacob Boehme in the 17th century; and it is said Emanuel Swedenborg in the 18th century. And probably most famously in historical times, it was used by H. P. Blavatsky and other early members of the philosophical-scientific non-sectarian organization the Theosophical Society; approximately 1875-1891 and later, as well as to this day. These stated that they used the word in the same sense as Porphyry. Many other later branches of The Theosophical Society in the time after about 1907 have used the word in a different sense, namely as a specific teaching they called theosophy. More on the latter later below.

Thomas Vaughan (1621-1666) offers a far better explanation than today's dictionaries. A more philosophical definition. He says: "a Theosophist is one who gives you a theory of God or the works of God, which has not revelation, but an inspiration of his own for its basis" - This inspiration is called by some of us with a more modern term for - experience-oriented scientific exploration of wisdom, and not faith or so-called "feelings".

The author and scientist Dr. Jean-Louis Siemons writes:
"The first among the Neo-Platonists to use the word theosophia is Porphyry, who speaks of it with respect and considerations pertaining to truly divine wisdom [more precisely: i.e. also knowledge of the divine, i.e. knowledge of all life and the universe; added by Morten Nymann] the théosophoi are for him pure mystical philosophers, made divine by their spiritual discipline. As there was, beyond question, an esoteric side to the Neo-Platonic school (as in many other systems of Hellenic or oriental origins) one can assume that a théosophos must have been also an initiate, in Porphyry’s mind."
(See "Theosofia in Neo-Platonic and Christian Literature" (2nd to 6th Century A.D.), Dr. Jean-Louis Siemons, Theosophical History Centre, London, 1988, p. 24-26.)

Neo-platonikeren Porphyry uses the word theosophy in his work "On Abstinence from Animal Food" at least three times - usually with reference to people with a way of life that led to knowledge/wisdom of life or union with the divine (more precisely: the highest possible knowledge ). Here follows a key quote.

Neo-platonikeren Porphyry wrote:
"And a divine person is one who seeks to free himself from the passions of the soul, abstains from food which inspires passions, nourishes himself with theosophy, and in this way imitating the noble and good divine forms performs mental sacrifices. One who appears before the divine, with white clothing, a pure soul, and unmoved by inappropriate undigested food and soul passions."
("Abstinence from Animal Food" af Porphyry - Bog II, vers 45. Baseret på forskellige oversættelser.)

In several English translations of the text just above, the word "theosophia" is given as "divine wisdom", (possibly "divine knowledge"), divine wisdom; i.e. by the philosopher Porphyry the highest knowledge or wisdom we humans can acquire. And therefore not a faith, but knowledge, and wisdom, experience-oriented science and wisdom. Porphyry clearly deals with a scientific and knowledge-based approach to religion and not with a faith-based or fanatical reverie.
According to Porphyry, "Theosophos" (Theosophist) is a person who (philosophically and psychologically considered in all aspects) tries to overcome his ignorance by controlling his soul passions and free himself from ignorance by acquiring the highest knowledge or wisdom - by Porphyry called divine wisdom - theosophy - and what I and others call theosophy; not as a specific established teaching, but as a generic designation, and a view that the individual himself presents from his own standpoint. Not one that others determine for the individual person.

Definition of the word "theosophy" in The Theosophical Society in the period 1875-1891 or possibly later.
In this presentation, I will start by showing which definition of the word was used in The Theosophical Society in the period 1875-1891 or possibly later.

But to explain the term "theosophy" adequately, just a few words about the non-sectarian nature of The Theosophical Society. The following is from the statutes of 1890. These conditions are still stated to apply to The Theosophical Society, which has its headquarters in India at Adyar, although in a different wording.

Centralt i vedtægterne i The Theosophical Society i 1890:

”Article XIII

1. Any Fellow who shall in any way attempt to involve the Society in political disputes shall be immediately expelled.

2. No Fellow, Officer, or Council of the Thcosophical Society, or of any Section, or Branch thereof, shall promulgate or maintain any doctrins as being that advanced or advocatcd by the Society.”
(Source: The statutes of The Theosophical Society in 1890 in original edition from the journal The Theosophist, January 1891, (See p. 33 in PDF, or p. 65 and other pages; and the section named "Special Information").

The Theosophical Society in the period 1875-1891 (and also today) therefore did NOT have any specific teachings called "theosophy" that someone presented on behalf of the organization and on behalf of ordinary members. This was more or less gradually changed by the public press, by historians, and by other branches which arose from the original Theosophical Society, so that "theosophy" was and is a definite doctrine stated by some definite writers, or a definite new impulse. But, that does not make it a truth to rewrite this original definition.

The Theosophical Society, however, adopted a statement in 1924 called: The Freedom of Thought Resolution. This is of very important ethical importance. And since it seems misunderstood by many even today, it is stated here below.

The official Resolution of Freedom of Thought says:
"As the Theosophical Society has spread far and wide over the world, and as members of all religions have become members of it without surrendering the special dogmas, teachings and beliefs of their respective faiths, it is thought desirable to emphasize the fact that there is no doctrine, no opinion, by whomsoever taught or held, that is in any way binding on any member of the Society, none which any member is not free to accept or reject. Approval of its three Objects is the sole condition of membership. No teacher, or writer, from H. P. Blavatsky onwards, has any authority to impose his or her teachings or opinions on members. Every member has an equal right to follow any school of thought, but has no right to force the choice on any other. Neither a candidate for any office nor any voter can be rendered ineligible to stand or to vote, because of any opinion held, or because of membership in any school of thought. Opinions or beliefs neither bestow privileges nor inflict penalties. The Members of the General Council earnestly request every member of the Theosophical Society to maintain, defend and act upon these fundamental principles of the Society, and also fearlessly to exercise the right of liberty of thought and of expression thereof, within the limits of courtesy and consideration for others."
(See for instance page 1 in PDF - The Theosophist, April 2016).

This above concept was adopted as a declaration by the purely administrative General Council in 1924. The concept has been part of The Theosophical Society since its beginning in 1875. It can already be traced in the so-called "Preamble" to The Theosophical Society from October 1875 with with regard to the establishment of the Theosophical Society, and is also clearly found in the statutes of the Theosophical Society in the year 1888 onwards. It is therefore not correct to regard the word "theosophy" or "Theosophy" as an impulse of evolution, or to claim that as a member one must absolutely follow a certain limited impulse, or a teaching of one or a few selected authors. For the Concept of Freedom of Thought amounts to respecting countless ethically based thought systems and impulses among the members themselves. This concept opens up a very broad acceptance of an ethically based search for the meaning of life and not a narrow impulse where certain authors must absolutely be accepted as the most important. This avoids some authors or lecturers imposing on others what they should think about one or the other. It seems ethically a better way than many other organizations' often used way of dealing with these issues.

I will say without hesitation that it seems surprising today how many other later "Theosophy"-like organizations seem to have misunderstood this very important Concept of Freedom of Thought. They often seem to have replaced this Concept of Freedom of Thought with one or more of what they call impulses or narrow impulses that others must absolutely follow.

All of the above is written, as it can certainly help to better understand the non-sectarian nature the Theosophical Society had and still has.

A little historical background. Questions arise: Is theosophy what the founders of the Theosophical Society taught? Is it all that every administrative "leader" wrote about in the Theosophical Society? Isn't Theosophy or Theosophy just an Eastern religious doctrine with a doctrine of karma and reincarnation, 7 root-races, 7 rounds, 7 chains, and Manvanatars? Or is - theosophy - not just the same as Buddhism?

As we can see above and also later by quotes from these founders and administrative "leaders", the answer to the wording of the formulated questions is clearly and visibly NO.

I can only hope that the contents of this entire article will provide an answer to these questions. I will leave it to interested readers to do comparative studies to find out more about this in the various sources I have presented here and possibly elsewhere.

The definition of the word "theosophy" or "Theosophy" in the Theosophical Society during the period 1875-1891 and later.

The definition of the word "Theosophy" as it was first used by the members of the Theosophical Society in 1875 has been misunderstood by many today. Theosophy is not a definite doctrine which can be stated in a book which is then presented as a kind of Bible or a set of Bibles. The word "theosophy" is a kind of generic expression, and contains more, and more conditions in it than many people immediately believe today. See e.g. the following quotes on the definition of the word Theosophy in the period 1875-1891 or even later.
The word Theosophy was later gradually redefined by journalists, historians, slanderers and even by members of various Theosophical-oriented organizations, by the public press and even by some who called themselves Theosophists. Namely, redefined as a term to apply to denote a certain established doctrine of reincarnation and masters and karma and 7 rounds and 7 planes, manavantaras, etc., etc.

But even the above presentation fails to a certain extent in accurately presenting the truth about the term "theosophy" from the time before the year 1907 in the Theosophical Society - which was founded by H. P. Blavatsky, H. S. Olcott, W. Q. Judge and others in 1875.

The definition of the word "theosophy" or "Theosophy" in the Theosophical Society during the period 1875-1891 or later:

Now, in the below I present a number of translated quotations, included some from the three co-founders of the Theosophical Society: H. P. Blavatsky, H. S. Olcott, W. Q. Judge, and a few other contemporary Theosophists. I can only hope that these quotations will suffice to make it clear to all what the word "Theosophy" meant to the first members of the Theosophical Society. And that later Theosophical or Theosophy-like offshoots have distorted or diluted the definition of the word "Theosophy" in one way or another.

*** 1 ***
The theosophist Countess Marie Caithness on the word - theosophy:
Marie, Countess Caithness; Dutchesse de Pomar, 1887 The Theosophist Countess Caithness, the rich French lady who established the Theosophical Society in France. She became a member of TS already in 1876, as far as I can see. See the book "The Mystery of the Ages", by Countess Caithness, 1887, 1-3 edition.  

Countess Caithness says in this book:
"True Theosophy studies all religions, but teaches none, leaving it to the individual to have the right to find the TRUTH for himself."
(page xviii.)  

Parts of this book, according to H. S. Olcott, are based on the visit H. S. Olcott and H. P. Blavatsky had to Countess Caithness in France, at Nice in the year 1884, and the teaching and exchange of spiritual ideas which Countess Caithness received from H. S. Olcott, H. P. Blavatsky and others who were there.
(See "Old Diary Leaves" by H. S. Olcott; 1904, p. 89.)  

*** 2 ***
H. P. Blavatsky on the word - Theosophy:
HP Blavatsky in London, 1889 H. P. Blavatsky wrote in 1889:
" In its capacity of an abstract body, the Society does not believe in anything, does not accept anything, and does not teach anything. The Society per se cannot and should not have any one religion. Cults, after all, are merely vehicles, more or less material forms, containing a lesser or greater degree of the essence of Truth, which is One and universal. Theosophy is in principle the spiritual as well as the physical science of that Truth, the very essence of deistic and philosophical research. Visible representative of universal Truth—as all religions and philosophies are contained therein, and as each one of them contains in its turn a portion of that Truth— the Society could be no more sectarian, or have more preference, or partiality, than an anthropological or a geographical society. Are the latter concerned whether their explorers belong to this or the other religion, as long as everyone of their members carries out his duties courageously?"
(See “The New Cycle", H. P. Blavatsky Collected Writings, vol. XI, p. 124)

 *** 3 ***
H. P. Blavatsky wrote to the American General Assembly of the Theosophical Society in 1888:
”Orthodoxy in Theosophy is a thing neither possible nor desirable. It is diversity of opinion, within certain limits, that keeps the Theosophical Society a living and a healthy body, its many other ugly features notwithstanding. Were it not, also, for the existence of a large amount of uncertainty in the minds of students of Theosophy, such healthy divergencies would be impossible, and the Society would degenerate into a sect, in which a narrow and stereotyped creed would take the place of the living and breathing spirit of Truth and an ever growing Knowledge.”
(Se "Second Annual Convention — April 22-23 - American Section of the Theosophical Society, af H. P. Blavatsky)

*** 4 ***
H. P. Blavatsky skrev:
(Enquirer. Theosophy and its doctrines are often referred to as a new-fangled religion. Is it a religion?:) "Theosophist. It is not. Theosophy is Divine Knowledge or Science.”.....""Divine Wisdom," Φεοσοφια (Theosophia), or Wisdom of the gods"
(See “The Key to Theosophy”, 2nd ed. 1890, p. 1)

*** 5 ***
H. P. Blavatsky wrote the following answer to a complaint about the word "theosophy," in 1889.  

"In the published Constitution and Rules great stress is laid upon the absolutely non-sectarian character of the Society. It is constantly insisted upon that it has no creed, no philosophy, no religion, no dogmas, and even no special views of its own to advocate, still less to impose on its members. And yet— "Why, bless us! is it not as undeniable a fact that certain very definite views of a philosophic and, strictly speaking, of a religious character are held by the Founders and most prominent members of the Society?"
"Verily so," we answer. "But where is the alleged contradiction in this? Neither the Founders, nor the 'most prominent members nor yet the majority thereof, constitute the Society, but only a certain portion of it, which, moreover, having no creed as a body, yet allows its members to believe as and what they please." In answer to this, we are told:—
"Very true; yet these doctrines are collectively called 'Theosophy.' What is your explanation of this?"
We reply:—"To call them so is a ‘collective’ mistake; one of those loose applications of terms to things that ought to be more carefully defined; and the neglect of members to do so is now bearing its fruits."


"And yet if answered that it is not so; that the T.S. as a body teaches no special religion but tolerates and virtually accepts all religions by never interfering with, or even inquiring after the religious views of, its members, our cavillers and even friendly opponents, do not feel satisfied. On the contrary: ten to one they will non-plus you with the following extraordinary objection:— "How can this be, since belief in 'Esoteric Buddhism' is a sine qua non for acceptance as a Fellow of your Society?"
It is vain to protest any longer; useless, to assure our opponents that belief in Buddhism, whether esoteric or exoteric, is no more expected by, nor obligatory in, our Society than reverence for the monkey-god Hanuman, him of the singed tail, or belief in Mohammed and his canonized mare. It is unprofitable to try and explain that since there are in the T.S. as many Brahmins, Mussulmans, Parsis, Jews and Christians as there are Buddhists, and more, all cannot be expected to become followers of Buddha, nor even of Buddhism, howsoever esoteric. Nor can they be made to realize that the Occult doctrines—a few fundamental teachings of which are broadly outlined in Mr. Sinnett’s Esoteric Buddhism—are not the whole of Theosophy, nor even the whole of the secret doctrines of the East, but a very small portion of these: Occultism itself being but one of the Sciences of Theosophy, or the WISDOM-Religion, and by no means the whole of THEOSOPHY.
So firmly rooted seem these ideas, however, in the mind of the average Britisher, that it is like telling him that there are Russians who are neither Nihilists nor Panslavists, and that every Frenchman does not make his daily meal of frogs; he will simply refuse to believe you. Prejudice against Theosophy seems to have become part of the national feeling. For almost three years the writer of the present—helped in this by a host of Theosophists—has tried in vain to sweep away from the public brain some of the most fantastic cobwebs with which it is garnished; and now she is on the eve of giving up the attempt in despair! While half of the English people will persist in confusing Theosophy with "esoteric bud-ism," the remainder will keep on pronouncing the world-honoured title of Buddha as they do—butter.
It is they also who have started the proposition now generally adopted by the flippant press that "Theosophy is not a philosophy, but a religion," and "a new sect." Theosophy is certainly not a philosophy, simply because it includes every philosophy as every science and religion.


"Theosophy is "divine" or "god-wisdom." Therefore, it must be the life-blood of that system (philosophy) which is defined as "the science of things divine and human and the causes in which they are contained" (Sir W. Hamilton), Theosophy alone possessing the keys to those "causes." Bearing in mind simply its most elementary division, we find that philosophy is the love of, and search after, wisdom, "the knowledge of phenomena as explained by, and resolved into, causes and reasons, powers and laws." (Encyclopedia.)"


"We need not go out of our way to notice at any length such foolish statements about Theosophy and Theosophists as are found almost daily in the public press. Such definitions and epithets as “newfangled religion” and "ism," "the system invented by the high priestess of Theosophy," and other remarks as silly, may be left to their own fate. They have been and in most cases will be left unnoticed."
(See H. P. Blavatskky's Collected Writings, Vol. XI, p. 431-439. Published posthumously in 1892.)

*** 6 ***
W. Q. Judge, on the word - Theosophy:
W. Q. Judge W. Q. Judge co-founder of The Theosophical Society:
"The Society, as such, has no authorities. It was founded with the object of breaking down that reliance upon "authority" which has been the bane of man for ages, and it would be strange now if we could admit authority for theosophists. It is true that sometimes the impression has been conveyed by individuals, that the final arbiters in matters of belief are the Mahatmas, but at no time has any Mahatma given out such an idea. We are engaged in trying to develop a truer appreciation of the Light of Life which is hidden in every man, and so the "final authority" is the man himself."
(See "AUTHORITY", by W. Q. Judge, in The Path, Nov. 1887. Volume II, p. 252.)  

*** 7 ***
W. Q. Judge co-founder of The Theosophical Society:
If our effort is to succeed, we must avoid dogmatism in theosophy as much as in anything else, for the moment we dogmatise and insist on our construction of theosophy, that moment we lose sight of Universal Brotherhood and sow the seeds of future trouble.
(See ”DOGMATISM IN THEOSOPHY”, af W. Q. Judge, i the Path, January, 1892. )

*** 8 ***
W. Q. Judge co-founder of The Theosophical Society on his book "The Ocean of Theosophy":
"An attempt is made in the pages of this book to write of Theosophy in such a manner as to be understood by the ordinary reader. Bold statements are made in it upon the knowledge of the writer, but at the same time it is distinctly to be understood that he alone is responsible for what is therein written: the Theosophical Society is not involved in nor bound by anything said in the book, nor are any of its members any the less good Theosophists because they may not accept what he has set down."
(Se "The Ocean of Theosophy" by William Q. Judge, Forord, p. ix; 1893)

*** 9 ***
H. S. Olcott on the word - Theosophy:
H. S. Olcott, i London år 1888 H. S. Olcott co-founder of The Theosophical Society:
"You will also infer that, despite the false statements or ignorant misconceptions of many of our critics, we are not preaching a new religion, or founding a new sect, or a new school of philosophy or occult science."


".....that Theosophy is the scientific and the only firm basis of religion. We deny that there is the slightest conflict between true religion and true science. We deny that any religion can be true that does not rest upon scientific lines"


"If Psychology is a science, — and Psychology includes the learning of divine wisdom — then this search after religious truth is the scientific basis of religion. Theosophy, therefore, is the scientific basis of religion, for this research is Theosophy. I think this is plain enough, and I cannot see how any reasonable man, of whatever creed or sect, could put himself in antagonism to us. If his sect or his bigotry is more precious to him than the learning of the truth, of course we need not areue with him. He could not understand us, or, if he could, he would not admit it. Perhaps, in his petulant dissatisfaction, he might even accuse us of falsehood."
(See ”Theosophy : religion and occult science”, 1885, p. 145-148)

A side note:
If I paraphrase the words of H. S. Olcott, we have that the psychological science of divine wisdom is Theosophy. In other words, the experience-oriented Psychological scientific teaching about divine wisdom or the highest wisdom is what we call Theosophy. And even the very transcendence of the thought of and of the expression "the experience-oriented Psychological scientific teaching of divine wisdom or the highest wisdom" is also what we call Theosophy. That which is above all thoughts.

Such a science is not a belief, but based on genuine knowledge. And scuh a science on - divine wisdom - is a science not accepted today by modern science within what it calls the science of Psychology. And we wonder why, since genuine scientific research upon wisdom must be perceived to be of the outmost importance for any sincere and honest seeker after knowledge? I and others will await a wise answer filles with wisdom from the best scientist within the field of psychology. (by Morten Nymann.)

*** 10 ***
H. S. Olcott co-founder of The Theosophical Society:
"What then is Theosophy? you will ask. I reply that Theosophia — "Godlike wisdom" — for us means "search after divine knowledge," the term divine applying, as we see it, to the divine nature of the abstract principle, not to the quality of a Personal God.
(See ”Theosophy : religion and occult science”, 1885, p. 176)

*** 11 ***
The Theosophical Society, Objects, October 1875:
"Whatever may be the private opinions of its members, the society has no dogmas to enforce, no creed to disseminate. It is formed neither as a Spiritualistic schism, nor to serve as the foe or friend of any sectarian or philosophic body. Its only axiom is the omnipotence of truth, its only creed a profession of unqualified devotion to its discovery and propagation. In considering the qualifications of applicants for membership, it knows neither race, sex, color, country nor creed."
¨ (See ”Preamble of The Theosophical Society in 1875".)

*** 12 ***
COMMENTS ON "THE THEOSOPHICAL SOCIETY AND H.P.B." by the theosophist H. T. Patterson:
"It was, if we as a Society have a philosophy. We constantly cry out we have no creeds, no dogmas, no beliefs, and we almost as constantly, or at any rate very frequently, unintentionally give the lie to this.
And why speak of the Society as an absurdity without Masters? Are its objects, especially the first, nothing? If those objects were even partially lived up to, and again let us say "especially the first," would no good come of it? Most certainly, and it is perhaps this good which the Masters are seeking, rather than the acceptance of any philosophy, or any recognition of themselves.*"
[FOOTNOTE to the above text by H. P. Blavatsky says:]
”* Our Brother, Mr. Patterson, is quite correct.—[H.P.B.] "
(Se ”H. P. Blavatsky's Collected Writings, Vol. XIII, p. 119; feb. 1891)  

Short concluding comments by Morten Nymann:
All of the above regarding the definition of the word "theosophy" or "Theosophy" seems to clearly show that many later Theosophical or Theosophical-like groups and organizations have defined the word incorrectly or in a very vague way as "wisdom teaching" or e.g. as a certain doctrine containing an emphasis on a 7-fold structure of the universe, and on reincarnation, the law of karma, manvantaras, a certain fixed doctrine of synthesis stated by a group of few authors or only a single author, etc., etc. Moreover, it is seen that today's dictionaries and several historians have not understood the definition of the word "theosophy" or "Theosophy" correctly. For the word is not defined as a certain established doctrine, but is a generic designation. And the word "theosophy" is therefore, as mentioned above, what the individual philosophically searching person, who is looking for the meaning of life, himself states this to be. At the same time, "theosophy" is also a search for the meaning of life. And the word "theosophy" can refer to both the known and the unknown, ordinary sciences, religions, religious science, and everything else about life, even that which may surpass the understanding of the individual person. Theosophy as "divine wisdom/knowledge" or "wisdom/knowledge of the gods" (as opposed to belief in the Divinity or gods) is a term where the word "divinity" should be more comprehensibly translated as "the highest intelligence", - a term which all philosophies and worldviews refer to if they seek an understanding of the meaning of life; i.e. unless they express themselves unintelligibly.

One of the reasons for the possible confusion about what the word - theosophy - actually means or is defined as is undoubtedly due to the fact that a number of writers have presented the word "theosophy" or "Theosophy" as their own conception of the meaning of life, but that they have not clearly presented that the term is a generic expression, or that they did not know that it originally had this meaning.

Please note that everything I write is presented on my own behalf and not on behalf of the Theosophical Society, as this is a private website. And all of the above are just my opinions on this subject. And I have tried above to demonstrate my views by quoting from a number of authors and by looking for historical documentation on the subject. My hope is that there are at least some readers who can use it for something good. Suggestions for improvements are welcome.

(Let me finally add that this article was posted on this website in my native language Danish the year 2013. Through the years a number of people have commented on that the article had helped them to better understand wisdom and the main aims and objects the founders of The Theosophical Society had. - Morten Nymann.)

Copyright © 2001 | M. Nymann -