The Theosophical Society in America

President's Diary

March 2004

Betty Bland

As I write this, at last the deep freeze of winter is releasing its tight grip and allowing the grass to peep through the melting snow. By the time you read this in the May/June issue of Quest, the throes of winter will be but a faint memory. Such is our schedule at Quest that we have to work far ahead. In fact for much of our publishing and program planning we have to work so far in advance that I sometimes do not know whether I am in the present or future! Yet I try to do it all, living in the now.

On December 31st the Young Theosophists sponsored the Meditation for World Peace at 6:00 in the morning—yes, I said Young Theosophists and morning in the same sentence. The YT’s have led this meditation for the past five or so years in what is becoming a tradition for us and around the world. Many groups have a meditation for peace on the morning of December 31, and as the morning sunrise moves around the world, so do the prayers for World Peace. Maybe next year you would like to join us in that practice, wherever you are.

Board meetings in January progressed smoothly but intensely. All members of the Board are dedicated to the welfare of the Society and its effectiveness in the world. We are constantly trying to balance budgetary considerations with our plans for the work of the Society. Also, because the Board takes very seriously its mandate to protect the Society’s mission of being a clear repository and transmitter of the ancient wisdom for which our forbearers labored so diligently, it often explores these issues deeply when considering publications and programs.

For some time now, the library has been receiving a much-needed face-lift due to a kind and generous gift from the Sellon Charitable Trust. Several years ago new light fixtures were installed, but it took a while to get everything in place for the installation of a new carpet. If you would like to give a librarian nightmares, consider moving all the books and bookshelves in order to make way for new carpet! Our librarian, Elisabeth Trumpler, and her two assistants, Marina Maestas and Gary Belgarde, came through with flying colors. With the help of professional library movers and our maintenance staff, the project went amazingly smoothly. Now the library is back in full operation without a hitch.

The final piece of the library project involved the complete rebuilding and re-upholstery of the sofa. We discovered from some early pictures that this interesting sofa was original to the building, so we felt compelled to restore it. We have also discovered in a storage room the original table that was used with the sofa, and hope one day to refinish that as well. The Rogers’ Building has a rich history that is well worth maintaining.

When we were planning the library project, it seemed to make so much sense to re-carpet the entire hallway and lobby while we were about the task. But just when it seemed out of the question, I received an offer from two very dedicated members, who wanted to give the Society a gift in order to help with some special need. They came forth just at the crucial moment, and made it possible to have the new carpet run all the way through the hallway, lobby, and into the family room. We are so grateful.

The pictures show some work in process and the finished results. I hope that you will come soon to see for yourself how wonderful it all looks.

New Carpet
Photos by Jeff Gresko