Issue 24 – December 2012


·     Update on the International TOS Conference in 2013

·     Hungarian TOS Group launches their newsletter

·     Brisbane TOS, Australia, organises its first Art Exhibition

·     Fundraising news in brief

·     What’s new on the International TOS website?

·     Our newest TOS Group – in the Dominican Republic

·     Insights through service

·     Food shortages could encourage vegetarianism

·     Humorous and creative videos to make us stop and think



Dear fellow-members of the TS and TOS around the world,

2012 has been a year in which our TOS community has worked with energy and dedication to make a difference in our world. Individually and collectively we have endeavoured to put theosophical principles into action in our service to the One Life in all.

As we celebrate our achievements, we look forward to a vibrant 2013. We wish you peace, harmony and spiritual fulfilment, and a New Year filled with happiness and many opportunities to work together in service.

Remember that the newsletter is designed to be read while you are connected to the internet.

Please also consider sending photographs of your TOS activities and news items that might be of interest to fellow TOS members. We would welcome your contributions by email to the editors at

With best wishes,

Carolyn, Diana and Geoffrey




The editorial team (L. to R.)

Diana Dunningham Chapotin - International TOS Secretary,

Geoffrey Harrod is the International TOS Webmaster, and

Carolyn Harrod is the past TOS National Coordinator in Australia.



To make a difference is not a matter of accident, a matter of casual occurrence of the tides. People choose to make a difference.

Maya Angelou



Update on the International TOS Conference in 2013

You are warmly invited to participate in our International Conference if you are an active worker in your TOS Group at local or national level. The three-day conference will be held at Olcott, the national centre of the TS in America in Wheaton, Illinois from the evening of Tuesday 23 July to Friday 26 July, 2013. The TOS Conference is preceded by a five-day Summer National Convention of the TS in America from 19 July to 23 July. All are invited to attend this event as well.

Registration details have now been finalised and a registration form is available here:
  Form for USA members  |  Form for international members.
The TS in America is managing the registrations for us and is looking forward to receiving them.

The program is almost finalised and an outline is available here. We are delighted that Maria Parisen, Director, Krotona School of Theosophy and Vic Hao Chin Jr, President of the Golden Link College, have agreed to be featured presenters.

If you’d like to learn more about the TS in America’s headquarters in Wheaton, you may be interested in watching the ten-minute program about its history and facilities. (YouTube)
  View the video….





Hungarian TOS Group launches their newsletter

The Hungarian TOS Group, MA-TESZ, has recently celebrated another initiative: the publication of an English language electronic newsletter. Members of our international TOS family are invited to access the newsletter at

and to register to receive further copies.

In this issue of their newsletter, the Hungarian TOS Group reports on two current activities that reflect their interest in healing. They have established a healing group that meets weekly, using the Healing Ritual developed for the TOS by Geoffrey Hodson. MA-TESZ has also been collaborating with another healing group, Classic Cosmoenergy, that uses a spiritual healing method devised on theosophical principles by Nicolas Roerich. As well as learning this healing method, members of MA-TESZ have led theosophical seminars with other students of cosmoenergy.

MA-TESZ continues to be active in a wide range of social and animal welfare projects. They are supporting animal shelters in their area with the collection of bandages needed for veterinary care.

Their other service initiatives include:

·         making ‘hygiene packs’ from donated toiletries for homeless patients of a psychiatric facility

·         collecting books for a village library

·         establishing a telephone help-line for spiritual assistance.

Congratulations to all Hungarian TOS members on your energy, imagination and initiative. 
  Read more... 




Brisbane TOS, Australia, organises its first Art Exhibition

The Art Exhibition that they organised in 2012 has been one of the Brisbane TOS Group’s most successful fundraising activities.

One of their members, Karen Cipressi, is an artist with a great deal of experience in collaboratively organising exhibitions. She suggested the idea of holding an art exhibition to raise funds for a major TOS project and led the team that organised it.

Once her enthusiastic team was established, the first decision to be made was the beneficiary, because that would help create a theme for the exhibition.

The Brisbane TOS members were inspired by the drought relief and water-bore project of the Kenyan TOS so decided that the funds raised through the exhibition would be donated to that project. Australia is one of the driest continents on our planet, so most Brisbane TOS members had had experiences of water shortages. Another attraction of this project is that it aims to build community cooperation and sustainability so that the village in Kitui has long-term benefits. The theme they chose for the exhibition was Water for Life.


Fundraising news in brief

Famine relief in our Kenyan village

It is surprising how varied the activities have been in support of our Kenyan village. While the TOS in Brisbane was planning its Art Exhibition, Mr and Mrs Hornung, the parents of the General Secretary of the TS in Germany, Manuela Kaulich, were sending us the impressive sum of 1900 euros (approx. $US2300) raised by selling sweets in their shop.  We send them special thanks for this amazing individual effort.


Update on donations for the Kern matching grant

A special, short newsletter appeared last month with a lively photographic report on the completion of our famine relief project for the village of Kaamba in Kenya. An exceptional, urgent request for donations was made to help us qualify for the Kern matching grant in support of the Golden Link College in the Philippines. We would like to thank members in England and New Zealand for their kind response to this appeal. We are happy to inform you that we are now just $2000 off our target. It is not too late to donate. If you are able to help before December 31, please write to our international secretary at She will be grateful to hear from you.



Some of the Adyar workers holding their medical reports outside the TS Dispensary

What’s new on the International TOS website?

Our Latest News this month provides details about the two featured presenters, Maria Parisen and Vic Hao Chin Jr, at our International Conference for active TOS workers in July 2013. Both Maria and Vic will present a talk and conduct a workshop during the conference. You’ll also find the latest program outline and the registration form on the website.

The new Featured Article is the second in a series by Pamela Zane Keys, the current editor of TheoSophia, the magazine of the Theosophical Society in New Zealand. In Finding a different way, Part 2, she talks of the healing effects of making inner harmony her first priority.

In our Featured Project we bring news of a new project initiated by the Chennai TOS. The Strength, Health & Energy (SHE) Project was commenced on August 12, 2012, on the birth anniversary of H. P. Blavatsky, following the success of the Seeing Eyes for Everyone (SEE) Project. The SHE Project aims to address the health and vitality issues of the underprivileged. The first step has been to conduct a battery of tests as part of a ‘Master Health Check-up’ package for employees and contract workers at the Adyar Headquarters.

You’ll also find additions to the TOS photo gallery and an expanded Inspiration section that now has quotations, stories and video links. We look forward to adding new stories and videos over the coming year. Go to



Our newest TOS Group – in the Dominican Republic

Enthusiastic members of the Theosophical Society in the Dominican Republic have recently formed our newest TOS Group. They have already got their first project underway. Through their contacts, they have been collecting donations of books for an Educational Centre named 'Los Rieles II' at Puerto Plata city. We have just received a video of them delivering the books to the great excitement of the students who helped with the carrying and unpacking.  
 View the video  (MP4 movie 1m 30sec, uses your media viewer)




Insights through service

Many TOS members have found that their service to others has brought with it a deeper understanding of themselves, of relationships and of the theosophical principles that inspire their service. In the fourth article in this series, TOS member, Gracia Fay Ellwood shares an insight into working alongside people with seemingly opposing viewpoints to one’s own.

She writes, “I have come to see the apparent enemies of animals and of vegetarianism as potential friends who in time will open their hearts to the suffering of farmed animals, just as they have undoubtedly already done in other areas of their lives. They have things to teach us too; we need to remember that we are all still growing, and that the Spirit can speak through any one of us to any other. Instead of responding to the hostility some of them showed with hurt and hostility of my own, I can now respond in peace, and work with increasing confidence that the spirit of love will in time prevail.   Read more….


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Food shortages could encourage vegetarianism

Scientists are warning that water scarcity is likely to have such an impact on food production that radical steps will be needed to feed a world population expected to reach nine billion by 2050. In a recent article in The Guardian, a UK newspaper, the environmental editor, John Vidal, reported that scientists are warning that we live in an increasingly climate-erratic world. One third of the world's arable land is currently used to grow crops to feed animals. Since animal protein-rich food consumes five to 10 times more water than a vegetarian diet, changing to a plant based diet is a logical option for making better use of our scarce water resources for food production. Read more...




Humorous and creative videos to make us stop and think

How can you make people aware that the meat they are eating was once a living creature? This humorous video shows a clever idea that seems to work with most people. Just watch the horrified looks on many faces.   View the video...   (YouTube)


Animals Australia’s campaign against factory farming is having a significant impact on consumer choices and as a result the factory farming industry is in damage control. A major Australian supermarket group, Coles, has recently announced that by 2013 all of their 'home brand' pork, bacon and ham will come from farms where mother pigs are not kept in tiny crates (called sow stalls) during pregnancy; and all of their 'home brand' eggs will be cage free.

Animals Australia has produced a creative and touching video to accompany a well-known song. To be inspired by what is possible, view the video...


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