Theosophical Order of Service
I hope you had a wonderful holiday season and are looking forward to a bright new year.
This issue has much to do with animals. Most everyone I know has a soft spot for animals. If you're one of them, I invite you to participate in a TOS Healing Intention for animals used in laboratory research. To begin, relax your body and calm your emotions and mind. Imagine joining with others performing this intention as if you were together in one room, broadcasting this intention to the world together. Speak the following intention with a strong feeling of conviction, either mentally or (better yet) aloud:
Om . . . we ask for and invoke wholeness, love and light for all animals used in laboratory research worldwide. May they be comforted, soothed, protected and strengthened. May their human captors be flooded with compassion and the guiding light of wisdom. We intend that all of humanity shall see the wisdom of, and put into practice, the compassionate treatment of all animals.
Om . . .
TOS Liaison Coordinator
|Denver TOS: sending kids a bit of our world
|In the last issue I featured a website (SendKidstheWorld.com) that helps people send cheerful, upbeat postcards to children suffering from life-threatening illnesses. I suggested having a postcard party with your fellow theosophists. Our Denver TS/TOS group did just that as the main attraction of our holiday party (in addition to the table heaped with delicious treats). Here's how we did it.
We began by watching this video taken at Children's Hospital at Dartmouth-Hitchcock (CHAD) in New Hampshire. The kids are performing Katy Perry's song "Roar" and even the staff and administrators get in the act. It's one of those "you gotta see this" videos.
I printed out profiles of 23 kids from the website and wrote the child's address on each profile. I made postcards using photos offered to the public by the Denver Zoo. Each postcard had the TOS logo printed on the back. You could also use purchased postcards showing fun things going on in your part of the world.
We started out reading each child's story to the group, and someone would volunteer to write to that child. After a time, we just passed the stack of profiles around and everyone selected one. We kept passing and writing and passing and writing until each child had their own postcard. We finished with a TOS healing ceremony which included all the children we had just written to.
There was a deep, quiet joy as we connected with children who are chronically ill but still have plenty of "ROAR" in them and just want to be happy, active kids. At left are a couple zoo photos that we used on our postcards (floaty bear was a favorite).
As an added service, some members brought toys and books which were donated to Toys for Tots.
Get your postcard party started: www.SendKidstheWorld.com
|Beagle Freedom Project
|In 2012, nearly 70,000 dogs were used in laboratory experiments, and about 96% of them were beagles. Why beagles? Because beagles are docile, forgiving and people-pleasing to a fault. Recently some laboratories have shown a willingness to release beagles they no longer need or want for further experiments, rather than euthanizing them as is customary in the industry. This gives the dogs a chance to heal and find a happy, loving home. Enter animal rights attorney Shannon Keith and a small network of rescue volunteers. In 2010, Shannon heard about a group of dogs being released from a research lab, and the Beagle Freedom Project was born.
Since then, Shannon and volunteers have performed at least 25 rescues, freeing 171 dogs, 10 ponies, 9 rabbits, 3 pigs, and 2 cats from animal testing laboratories.
Watch as beagles rescued from a Washington DC laboratory (nicknamed the "DC 7") taste freedom for the first time and take their first romp in a grassy yard. Rescued animals are housed with foster families until they find their forever homes.
Pictured at left is Kevin Chase, Operations Manager for the Beagle Freedom Project, along with Raymond, a sweet rescuee.
In mid-December 2013, Kevin participated in his 25th rescue operation, freeing nine beagles from a Minnesota research lab. Raymond was one of the nine, and Kevin took Raymond home for the night. Raymond paced incessantly, stressed from not understanding his new environment, fearful about what might be coming next. Exhausted himself, Kevin wrapped Raymond in a blanket, held him on his chest, and they both settled down for a rest.
Kevin recalls, "The day's full events combined with these new comforts of a soft cushion and a warm embrace triggered an instant sleep. For the hour he slept on my chest the reality of his trauma set in. I wanted so much to just make him better, to feel safe, but sadly know that we cannot undo the years of torment he has suffered in a couple hours or even days. His road to recovery would be a long one and he was just starting... but at least he's got this chance though."
Here's something we can all do: "vote with your wallet" by buying products certified as cruelty free. Download shopping guides here. Although the FDA still mandates animal testing on some products, it does not require animal testing on cosmetics. Yet, some companies still test cosmetic products on animals. The cruelty of animal research stops . . . when it stops turning a profit.
"Make ethical choices in what we buy, do, and watch. In a consumer-driven society our individual choices, used collectively for the good of animals and nature, can change the world faster than laws."
― Marc Bekoff, Animals Matter: A Biologist Explains Why We Should Treat Animals with Compassion and Respect
TOS Animal Healing Network goes global!
|Founded less than a year ago by Rozi Ulics, the TOS Animal Healing Network has blossomed into a global network of animal-loving meditators. The network includes 13 meditators in five US States (MD, VA, CO, TX and NM) as well as Hungary and India. Recently, the new network began exchanging names of animals with a long-standing healing meditation group at the Krotona Institute of Theosophy. This results in even more healing energy being sent to each animal in need. Within the new network alone, over 70 animals have received loving, healing energy. Most are dogs and cats, but the network has also meditated for a cow and a sugar glider. Network meditators invoke universal energies of healing and compassion for each animal.
Network meditators in action:
Rozi receives feedback that she says "often indicates that our animal subjects have either made full recovery, or in cases where the pet has died, the death was peaceful for both animal and human."
Meditators in the network focus mainly on individual animals, but they don't stop there. As Rozi explains, "The Network also periodically
Hungarian animal healing group led by Csilla Kiss. Note the doggy helper, Tobosz, who is blind in one eye and has been a recipient of the network's healing energy.
|Submit animal names for healing to: TOSanimalhealing@gmail.com. Animals receive healing meditative energy for 40 days. There is never a charge, and you need not be a member of the Theosophical Society to submit names or join the network as a meditator.
A Note from Hungary: The Last Caress
|Csilla Kiss, a TOS member in Hungary, joined the Animal Healing Network after connecting with Rozi at the 2013 TOS International Conference held at Olcott. Csilla was recently confronted with a painful situation that left her no time to think or analyze. Her quick actions illustrate what N. Sri Ram meant when he said, "In the truest service the consciousness of self is forgotten--you help because you cannot do other than help."
A short time ago, Csilla found a dog that had been hit by a car and left in the road to die. Csilla took the dog to a veterinary hospital, but his injuries were too severe and he could not be saved. In the few moments before the vet put him to sleep, Csilla was able to gently stroke the dog and provide a last bit of loving comfort.
Understandably, the experience took an emotional toll on Csilla, but it presented a financial challenge as well. Csilla says that veterinary care is very expensive in Hungary.
The next day, Csilla related the story to her fellow TOS members . . . and four members volunteered to help her with the cost! Csilla was deeply touched and grateful for their help. Shortly after, Rozi asked the members of the healing network to add the dog to their next healing ceremony. Perhaps you will join us by sending a little burst of love and comfort to the dog now known to some as "Last Caress."
"A union of those who love in the service of all that suffers."