With the unrest in the nation lately, many of us who are members of the Theosophical Society and who practice Theosophy as a way of life are quite fortunate. Theosophy gives us a wider lens in which to observe the unfolding of something that we realize does not just reside outside of ourselves, but is within us as well: “As within, so without.” The teachings of Theosophy provide a guideline as to “why” things may be happening and that, no matter what, the most important thing is to keep universal brotherhood first and foremost in our awareness. What we do to another, we do to ourselves.
In her letter to the second convention of the American Section, H. P. Blavatsky wrote:
[There are those] among us who realize intuitionally that the recognition of pure Theosophy—the philosophy of the rational explanation of things and not the tenets—is of the most vital importance in the Society, inasmuch as it alone can furnish the beacon-light needed to guide humanity on its true path. This should never be forgotten, nor should the following fact be overlooked. On the day when Theosophy will have accomplished its most holy and most important mission—namely, to unite firmly a body of men of all nations in brotherly love and bent on a pure altruistic work, not on a labor with selfish motives—on that day only will Theosophy become higher than any nominal brotherhood of Man.
Such words become even more pertinent when we see the struggles that surround us. While racism, prejudice, and hatred are intolerable to most goodhearted people, we must go one step beyond our repugnance of it and find out what lies under such beliefs. We cannot light the path of darkness if we fear the darkness itself. Could it be we fear the shadows that we may find within ourselves? This is why the study of the self becomes important as we continue to serve others. Reaching out to help another whose beliefs and actions make it difficult for us to find compassion in our hearts for them, is in essence, moving toward a compassionate way of living. By helping another so different from ourselves, we inch our way through the discomfort to a place of initial recognition of another individual, no different than ourselves. Thus moving toward our “most holy and most important mission.”