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Theosophical Encyclopedia

World Congress, Theosophical

The term “World Congress” refers to international gatherings of the Theosophical Society (TS) held at least seven years apart in various cities of the world. This is in accordance with the Memorandum of Association and Rules and Regulations of the Theosophical Society as incorporated at Madras, India, in 1905. In Article 47 “World Congress,” the rules state: “Not more than once in every seven years a World Congress of The Theosophical Society may be held at a place and date to be fixed by the General Council, but so as not to interfere with the Annual Convention.”

The first World Congress was held in Paris, France, in 1921. In 1925, being the 50th Anniversary of the Theosophical Society, the convention at Adyar was called a Jubilee Congress. In 1929, the World Congress at Chicago, U.S., was referred to as the third one, followed by Geneva, Switzerland, in 1936. The Second World War prevented the holding of a World Congress in the next decade. In 1949, the General Council decided that 1954 would be a suitable time for a World Congress, but none was held as planned. It was not until 1966 — or thirty years after the last one — that another Congress was held, this time in Salzburg, Austria.

The sixth Congress was held in 1975 to commemorate the centenary of the Theosophical Society. It was held in New York City where the TS was founded a century before. It was attended by the leaders of all three independent Theosophical Societies: the TS (Adyar), TS (Pasadena) and United Lodge of Theosophists.

In 1982, Nairobi (Kenya) hosted the next World Congress, followed by Brasilia (Brazil) in 1993, Sydney (Australia) in 2001, Rome (Italy) in 2010, and Singapore in 2018

 

V.H.C./C.J./H.J.

 

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