Each Member a Centre
The Path, October 1895
Some years ago one of those Masters in whom so many of our members believe directed H.P.B. to write a letter for him to a certain body of Theosophists. In this he said that each member could become, in his own town or city, if earnest, sincere and unselfish, an active centre from which would radiate unseen powerful forces able to influence men and women in the vicinity for good; and that soon enquirers would appear, a Branch in time be organized and thus the whole neighbourhood would receive benefit. This seems just and reasonable in addition to its being stated by such high authority. Members ought to consider and think over it so that action may follow.
Too many who think themselves theosophically alone in their own town, have folded their hands and shut up their minds, saying to themselves that they could do nothing, that no one was near who could possibly care for Theosophy, and that that particular town was the “most difficult for the work.”
The great mistake in these cases is forgetting the law indicated in what H.P.B. wrote. It is one that every member ought to know—that the mind of man is capable of bringing about results through means of other minds about him. If we sit and think that nothing can be done, then our subtle mind meets other minds within the radius of our sphere—not small—and shouts into them: “Nothing can be done.” Of course then nothing is done. But if unselfishly and earnestly we think Theosophy, and desire that others should, like us, be benefited by it, then to the minds we meet in stray moments of the day and in many hours of the night we cry “Theosophy,” and “Help and hope for thee.” The result must be an awakening of interest upon the slightest provocative occasion.
Such an inner attitude, added to every sort of attempt at promulgation, will disclose many unsuspected persons who are thinking along this very line. Thus will the opportunity of the hour be taken advantage of.
Our last Convention marked an era: the dying away of strife and opening of greater chances, the enlargement and extension of inquiry and interest on the part of the great public. This is a very great opportunity. Branches and members alike ought to rise to meet and use all that this will afford. Remember that we are not fighting for any form of organization, nor for badges, nor for petty personal ends, but for Theosophy; for the benefit, the advantage and the good of our fellow-men. As was said not long ago, those of us who follow after and worship a mere organization are making fetishes and worshipping a shell. Unselfishness is the real keynote.
Those of us who still, after years and after much instruction, are seeking and wishing for personal progress or preferment in the occult side of life, are destroying that quality first referred to—of being a living, breathing centre of light and hope for others. And the self-seekers thus also lessen their possible chances in the next life here.
Close up the ranks! Each member a centre; each Branch a centre; the whole a vast, whirling centre of light and force and energy for the benefit of the nation and of the race.