NATIONAL CAPITAL LODGE 2018 PROGRAM
Members’ Meeting: 11 PM
Public Meeting: 12 PM
January 6 O Hidden Life
Cancelled Due to Inclement Weather
January 13 The Necessity for Reincarnation
Reincarnation, a central concept in theosophy, postulates that after the death of the body, the consciousness that was animating a person returns to live in a new human body to continue its journey in the cycle of birth and re-birth. During this session, we will read and discuss an article by William Judge, one of founders of the Theosophical Society. Printed copies will be available. Those who prefer to read in advance can find the text at:
January 20 O Hidden Life
This Universal Invocation, also known as Universal Prayer, was written in 1923 by Annie Besant, then president of the Theosophical Society. Even though invocations have been used by every civilization from time immemorial, the “O, Hidden Life” verses were given to theosophists to be passed on to generations to come, especially in times of great hardships. We will explore together the content and meaning of this great invocation.
January 27 The Three Objects
Theosophy encourages complete liberty of thought and its students can belong to any spiritual tradition or none. The only requirement for membership in the Theosophical Society is resonance with its Three Objects. We will explore these Three Objects, their inter-relationship and ability to be interpreted on many different levels.
February 3 Progress in the Struggle against Global Poverty: Is Victory in Sight?
The community of nations has set a target date of 2030 for the elimination of abject poverty in the world. Substantial progress is being made, but serious obstacles remain in some nations. In this presentation, Bill Katzenstein will provide a history of the problems of dire poverty and lack of development in poor countries. Efforts to improve the livelihoods of the poorest of the poor, major successes to date, and related issues and problems will be elaborated.
February 10 Elementals Part I
We humans are one of seven life-waves (“kingdoms”) active on earth. We know a little about the material three: animal, plant (e.g., microbes) and mineral (e.g., weather) — and prosper in proportion to our knowledge. We know almost nothing about the immaterial three, the elemental kingdoms, and sometimes suffer accordingly. Come and learn about the theosophical point of view on elementals presented by Julia Rogers.
February 17 Elementals Part II
A further discussion on the elemental kingdoms as part of our earth’s “involving” life waves.
February 24 Pablo Sender: Enlightenment! Sudden or Gradual? Video Program
When we speak of “enlightenment,” what may come to mind is the image of a light bulb within us suddenly switching on, illuminating the darkness of our delusions with the all-pervading light of wisdom. This experience happens suddenly and with a sense of great surprise and wonder. But does enlightenment always occur suddenly? Is there a gradual process of spiritual unfolding that comes about as a result of cultivating a path of training?
March 3 The Baha’i Faith and World Peace
Three core principles establish a basis for Bahá’í teachings and doctrine: the unity of God, the unity of religion, and the unity of humanity. The Baha’i community also considers universal peach the supreme goal of all mankind and is confident in the advent of international peace as the next stage in the evolutions of humanity. Mr. Vasu Mohan will join us to discuss how this vision has persisted throughout the ages and why the Baha’is believe it is at long last within the reach of the nations.
March 17 Altruism in Theosophy
Theosophical teachings stress the importance of altruism. Join us for a roundtable discussion of the basis for altruism, its role, and issues that can arise from its application.
March 24 Chakras
Chakra, an old Sanskrit word that literally translates as “wheel” or “circle”, is believed to be a psychic-energy center in the human body in the esoteric traditions of Indian religions. With this talk, Susanne Hoepfl-Wellenhofer will discuss the differences between the Eastern and Western systems and the role of the Theosophical movement in bringing this knowledge to us. She will explore the meaning of the seven basic chakras, the positive and negative archetypes associated with each one of them, their demons and different ways to stimulate the chakras.
March 31 Closed for Easter
April 7 Sacrifice: A Spiritual and Philosophical Exploration concerning Sacrifices to the Gods
Offering of food, objects or the lives of animals to a higher purpose has been a part of human religious practices for thousands and thousands of years. Sacrifice to the Gods is at the core of ancient Hellenic religion. This talk considers the meaning of sacrifice, the forms and specific practices from within Hellenic religion. We will also consider how a regular practice of sacrifices can be developed within a contemporary context.
April 14 Francis Bacon on Adversity and Anger
One of the leading figures in natural philosophy and scientific methodology in the period of transition from the Renaissance to the early modern era, Francis Bacon (1561–1626) wrote on questions of religion, society and ethics. Famous for his brief essays written in aphoristic style, he challenged his contemporaries to explore old topics through a new lens. During this discussion, we will discuss two short essays on Adversity and Anger.
April 21 Goals and Aspirations from the Secret Doctrine’s View Point
We all set personal goals, which are usually objective, measurable and reachable with sufficient effort and perseverance. We also hope to achieve subjective and intangible results, which we call aspirations and usually tie to our higher ideals. Our guest speaker from the ULT will explore how we could approach these two closely connected concepts with the Secret Doctrine in mind.
April 28 Book Club: Magic: White and Black by Dr. Franz Hartmann
This inspiring book covers fundamental elements of Magic and its philosophy and purpose. We also learn that spiritual powers must be developed before they can be exercised and what conditions are necessary for their development. A free copy can be downloaded at: http://blavatskyarchives.com/theosophypdfs/hartmann_magic_black_and_white.pdf
May 5 The Tao — the Way — and Taoism
The deeply mystical Tao Te King is a fundamental text of the Chinese mystical tradition. Julia Rogers will discuss it in the light of Theosophy, showing similarities to the essential concepts of many religions.
May 12 Harnessing Thought Power to Change Our World
Round table discussion on how expectations and thought forms guide our personal lives and society as a whole. Be prepared to share what you have learned from Theosophy over the years as well as personal observations, contemplations, speculations and beliefs.
May 19 Orpheus and His Teachings
Nowadays Orpheus is considered a legendary musician, poet and prophet in ancient Greek religion and myth. Yet, his mysteries and teachings predate Classical Greece and originated in ancient Thrace. According to Helena Petrovna Blavatsky, his teachings resemble more those of India than Greece. The story of losing his wife Eurydice, descending to the underworld and returning to Earth is an esoteric account of afterlife, reincarnation and purification before the cycle of life and death is complete.
May 26 Closed for Memorial Day
The Bhagavad Gita
We will be studying the Bhagavad Gita for our summer program. Each participant is welcome to choose their own translation. Please be sure to read the assigned chapters prior to the meeting and come prepared to discuss.
June 16 Chapters 1 and 2 (offsite)
June 30 Chapters 3 and 4
July 14 Chapters 5 and 6
July 28 Chapters 7, 8 and 9
Aug 11 Chapters 10, 11 and 12
Aug 25 Chapters 13 and 14
Sept 8 Chapters 15 and 16
Sept 22 Chapters 17 and 18