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What is Theosophy

Geoffrey Farthing

Geoffrey Farthing
T.D., C. Eng,. M.I.E.E.
Geoffrey Farthing - biography

First published as 'What Theosophy is Not' in 'The Theosophist' magazine May-June 1971, at which time Geoffrey Farthing was General Secretary of the Theosophical Society in England. Subsequently reprinted as 'What is Theosophy'

Because it seemed to me that the views of both the public and of many members of The Theosophical Society were confused on the nature and Objects of the Society, I tried, in an article (What is The Theosophical Society?) published in 'The Theosophist' of November 1969 (go to article), to clarify these views by making some definite statements as to what the Society was not and then, putting forward some ideas on what it was or was supposed to be.  This analysis seems to have been acceptable and helpful.  It now seems to me that a similar attempt at clarification is even more necessary for Theosophy itself.  

First let us see what most definitely Theosophy is not -

It is not:

(1) a religion as such; certainly not one derived from any other or others;
(2) a spiritualistic nor psychic cult;
(3) a dogma, creed nor sect; it was not made up or invented by anyone;
(4) a speculative philosophy; not a concoction from or of any schools of philosophy;
(5) a system of necromancy, divination, nor any of the ceremonial magic arts, certainly not of the black variety;
(6) a system of thought nor a specific set of ideas;
(7) a matter of opinion, belief nor concept, neither yours, mine nor anyone else's;
(8) a means of self-aggrandisement nor of satisfying personal wants, ambitions nor cravings, nor even of personal needs;
(9) anything deliberately kept secret; it is not with­held from anyone;
(10) incompatible with any fact or truth in Nature, nor with anything moral, decent, kind or helpful, nor with anything sane and reasonable.

Theosophy presents a world view that emphasises the unity and interconnectedness of all life. It is a philosophy to be understood, not blindly accepted. Its principles have been stated by seers and sages since the most ancient times. It is not a religion, though  its concepts and ideas are found in many of the ancient religions and  also in most of  the major world religions of today. Theosophy is religion itself, the essence of true religion.  It is a synthesis of the underlying wisdom or mystic teachings of the ages and provides a framework for understanding the universe. Hence Theosophy has been called the Ancient or the Ageless Wisdom, the Wisdom-Religion or the Wisdom-Tradition, the perennial philosophy.  This is a Brochure from the New Zealand Section.


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Society Obects

  1. To form a nucleus of the universal brotherhood of humanity, without distinction of race, creed, sex, caste, or colour.
  2. To encourage the study of comparative religion, philosophy and science.
  3. To investigate unexplained laws of nature and the powers latent in humanity.



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