Theosophical Order of Service
Photo by Léna; Licensing
Dear TOS Liaisons and TS Group Leaders,
The TOS Intention Experiment is set to begin tomorrow, Monday, August 20! For those participating, it would be very interesting if you would make note of your experiences as you participate. Did you feel a sense of being part of a group? Did you experience peace? Joy? Did any insights arise? If you would be willing to share your experiences, I will share them with the group anonymously. Following are the details of the experiment:
Please RSVP if you haven't already, as part of my documentation will include the number of people participating. A quick reply to this email is enough--just to let me know you'll be participating, or a total count from your group.
Dates of participation: We will send our intentions daily from August 20, 2012, through and including August 26, 2012, at noon (or as close to noon as you can manage). If you're unable to do this at noon, do it whenever you can during your day, but include an intention that your efforts will carry the power and intensity of the noon hour. Studies have shown that "retroactive healing" meditation actually works (where meditators sent healing intentions to people who had been sick or injured many years ago), so we should be able to tap into the noon-hour power in a similar way.
Text of intention:
Linking mentally with other TS/TOS workers participating in this intention (you can envision us doing this together in a circle if that is helpful), say (aloud or mentally):
Om . . . Let us relax our physical bodies, quiet our emotions, still our minds, and harmonize our consciousness. Enclosing our group in a sphere of white light, let us center ourselves in that place within where we are whole and where we are one with all that lives.
Let us think of theosophical groups in cities around the country, seeing them as centers of light, radiating brilliant white light into their community for the benefit of all who seek the light of theosophy and for the highest good of all concerned.
Let us think of Olcott, the national center of the Theosophical Society, as a center of intensely brilliant white light, pouring out light that radiates like a powerful current through all the local TS centers and throughout the entire United States, serving as a beacon for all those who seek the light of wisdom. We intend that TSA's internet outreach, online programs and classes, articles, and videos be a brilliant source of light, comfort and guidance for those who seek it.
We intend that those who seek the light of theosophy may find the Theosophical Society through Olcott or through a local group. May Highest Will be served.
We give thanks that this is so. Om . . .
Please don't be shy about suggesting future intentions. There's no shortage of areas and situations that might benefit from a group intention of peace and healing.
Kathy Gann, TOS Liaison Coordinator
TOS in Binghamton, NY, plants
"Trees for Vets"
The Southern Tier Trees for Vets Program is a TOS program founded by Dave Ely, TOS Liaison for the Susquehanna Study Center in Binghamton, NY. Families of veterans can purchase a tree to be planted by volunteers in the Southern Tier area of New York. Trees are marked with an inscribed brick, and serve as a living memorial to the service provided by Veterans. Excess proceeds are given to a local Veterans' organization of the donor's choice. Planting began Spring of 2012 and thus far approximately $1,600 has been distributed to veterans' programs that "fill in the gaps" where government funding falls short.
Trees for Vets has a three-fold mission:
1) Provide a safety net for Veterans who are suffering the effects of PTSD or other service-related difficulties and need help readjusting to civilian life. All donations stay local to benefit local Veterans' Agencies.
2) Build public awareness. Planting trees with markers along our public walkways, county and town parks will help remind us of the service these men and women have given us, and help us to consider and be more aware of the difficulties they encounter when they come home to re-enter civilian life.
3) Beautify our communities with trees which provide us with shade and oxygen, and are symbolic of the strength and protection given by our men and women of the military service.
Dave believes that a Trees for Vets program "gives lodges and study centers the opportunity to raise the profile of Theosophy in their community."
To donate a tree or learn more, click here.
Since joining the Theosophical Society in 2006, Dave Ely says that participation in theosophical programs "has changed my life and my philosophies about the universe and my part in it." During the Olcott Experience, Dave was introduced to Edward Tick's book, "War and the Soul." Reading that book inspired him to become involved as a veterans' advocate, and to serve as a regional contact for Edward Tick's "Soldier's Heart" program. Not long after, Dave's dream of starting a Trees for Vets program was seeded. That was two years ago. Drawing on support and mentorship within the TS and TOS community, Dave's dream has become a reality, and he is now planting trees for vets along with other volunteers.
Dave feels that the TOS holds great "potential for us to make a difference directly in the world" and he invites his fellow TOS members to contact him for help in starting a Trees for Vets program in their own community. Email Dave at: RevDaveEly@gmail.com.
Donations Needed to Support the Work of Golden Link College
The Theosophical Order of Service acts as a conduit for donations to the Golden Link College located in the Philippines. Every dollar donated (up to a total of $18,000) is matched by a generous grant from The Kern Foundation.
This year's donations are earmarked to provide scholarships, allowing many low income children and youth to attend the school.
The Golden Link College offers Theosophical education from kindergarten to university, teaching Theosophical concepts as a way of life. The words of Vic Hao Chin, Jr., President of the Golden Link College, best describe the philosophy of the College:
"Based on the belief that individuals must discover the core values of their lives for themselves free from fear, coercion and prejudice, the Golden Link College is committed to education as a preparation for life and not just as a means to earn a better living. Through innovative teaching methods that respect and nurture the individuality and creativity of its students, it integrates the physical, emotional, intellectual and spiritual aspects of their growth in a well-rounded program. Teaching students to embrace their common humanity and to recognize their place in the web of life, the college strives to honor many faiths. It holds the conviction that individuals who are at peace with themselves will ultimately create a world at peace." – Vic Hao Chin, Jr.
Donate on-line at http://www.theoservice.org/donate. Select CEF: The Golden Link School from the drop down menu. Or, make your check payable to the TOS and mail it to: Theosophical Order of Service, P.O. Box 660, Warrenville, IL 60555. Please mark your check "Golden Link." All donations are tax deductible.
|Flooding in Manila, Philippines
Another tropical storm has swept across the Philippines, bringing more rain, landslides, and flooding to an already flood-devastated area. Clean-up has begun, and families are working to put their homes and lives back together.
If you would like to help families affected by the flood, Vic Hao Chin, TOS Chairman in the Philippines, has agreed to distribute funds to families in need. You can donate to flood victims on-line at http://www.theoservice.org/donate. Select "Other" from the drop down menu and specify "Manila flood." Or, make your check payable to the TOS and mail it to: Theosophical Order of Service, P.O. Box 660, Warrenville, IL 60555, and mark your check, "Manila flood." All donations are tax deductible.
Project L.I.G.H.T. Rwanda:
Orphaned genocide survivors grow into "Hopemakers"
In 2007, Lori Leyden, Ph.D., traveled to Rwanda to work with orphaned genocide survivors and orphaned heads of household (children caring for other children). After Lori worked with the kids using energy psychology techniques, their trauma outbreaks were reduced by 90%, a significant relief in a situation where 200+ teenagers share a one-room dormitory. Lori uses a "train the trainer" model. She has now worked with over 550 orphans and other genocide survivors, and those young people have trained hundreds of others.
Lori and team work with a student to relieve trauma
In Lori's work, trauma healing is the first priority. There were times, though, when she wondered if it would even be possible to heal the depths of the traumas, the intrusive memories, nightmares, and sense of hopelessness that have been the daily reality since 1994 of these young people. Looking back, what struck Lori and members of her team most clearly was the resiliency and human dignity they witnessed in the kids. Lori realized that if these kids, with all the horrors they had endured, were willing to try to forgive, then there truly was a potential within all human hearts for world peace.
"Now we have hope and we know this is not our burden alone to carry. Forgiveness is so hard but we are willing now because we know we need each other." --Celestin, Student Leader representing orphan genocide survivors.
Lori's vision extends far beyond healing the trauma, as critical and foundational as that work is. The orphans, now ages 16 to 25, are graduating high school in a country still not fully on its feet, and they find themselves with a diploma but few options for employment. Hope is still scarce. Thus, economic sustainability comes next—the young people need to be able to earn a living. Lori's model of "hand-up, not hand-out," is evolving as the first 12 young people, called "Ambassadors," have graduated her Project LIGHT program. Two Ambassadors are in college, and two have obtained driver's licenses (hard to do in Rwanda), so will be employable in professions that require driving. And all the Ambassadors are learning entrepreneurship, having launched a soap-making business. The lush landscape of Rwanda provides ample ingredients for making soap, and all 12 Ambassadors are learning all aspects of the business.
"Before I did not believe I could be an entrepreneur. Now I can start businesses in order to help myself, my community, my country and our world." Desire, Project LIGHT Ambassador
Yvette, a Project LIGHT Ambassador
Lori believes we are all "connected through our hearts' desires to love, to be loved, to live a meaningful life and to have a bright and peaceful future. When we honor our oneness and act as One Heart we can accomplish anything."
The beautiful teaching of the Dhammapada, that each person carries the light of the world within themselves, is echoed by Yvette: "You taught us to love ourselves. These lessons helped me realize I can make a difference. Happiness is for everyone. We are ready to become the Light of the World."
Lori calls the graduates of her program "Ambassadors." As they go about their vounteer work of teaching what they've learned in Project LIGHT, their community now calls these young heart-centered leaders "HOPEMAKERS."
Learn more about Project LIGHT: http://ProjectLightRwanda.com
For as little as $1, you can help fund a documentary film that will launch this work to the next level and help create the world's first International Youth Healing Center. Click here to help fund the documentary , claim a perk for helping, and see Lori's work in action in a recent video.
Project L.I.G.H.T. (Leadership, Inspiration, Global Healing and Transformation)
Plan ahead: October 27, 2012 is "Make a Difference Day"
A National Day of Doing Good. For more than 20 years, USA WEEKEND Magazine and Points of Light have joined together to sponsor Make A Difference Day, the largest national day of community service. Millions of volunteers around the world unite in a common mission to improve the lives of others. Join them on October 27, 2012.
You can add a project to their database and garner volunteers; or find an event in your neighborhood to volunteer for. Just enter your zip code, then click and drag the meter to show how many miles you're willing to drive. Click here to find an event.
Not sure how to organize a project? Download this detailed resource handbook for project leaders (also known as TOS Liaisons).
|And finally . . . a word from our Humor Department:
Theosophical Order of Service
"a union of those who love in the service of all that suffers"