THEOSOPHY, as the “Wisdom–Religion,” has existed from immemorial time. It offers us a theory of nature and of life which is founded upon knowledge acquired by the Sages of the past; and its higher students claim that this knowledge is not imagined or inferred, but that it is a knowledge of facts seen and known by those who are willing to comply with the conditions requisite for seeing and knowing. As the oldest tradition of human wisdom, theosophy has been expressed in different ages by such as Krishna and Buddha in the East, by Pythagoras, Plato and Jesus in the West.
Theosophy is not a “Faith,” for “Faiths” may be changed; but, being knowledge which each can make his own, it is not dependent upon dogma or revelation. Theosophists do not demand acceptance of theosophy; they point out its principles and their applications. Theosophy makes certain statements, but not as statements to be believed. The object of theosophy is to teach man what he is, through showing him the necessity of knowing for himself and becoming his own authority.
The real meaning of the term Theosophy is “Divine Wisdom,” Theosophia or “Wisdom of the Gods.” The word “Theos” means a god in Greek, one of the divine beings, certainly not “God” in the sense attached in our day to the term. Therefore, it is not “Wisdom of God,” as translated by some, but Divine Wisdom such as possessed by the gods. The term is many thousands of years old. It came to us from the Alexandrian philosophers, called lovers of truth, Philalethians, from phil, “loving,” and aletheia, “truth.” The term Theosophy dates from the third century of our era, and began with Ammonius Saccas and his disciples, who started the Eclectic Theosophical System.
What was the aim of Theosophical system of Ammonius Saccas and that of the modern Theosophical Movement?
It was to inculcate certain great moral truths upon its disciples, and all those who were “lovers of the truth.” Hence the motto adopted by the Theosophical Society: “There is no religion higher than truth.” The chief aim of the Founders of the Eclectic Theosophical School was one of the three objects of its modern successor, the Theosophical Society, namely, to reconcile all religions, sects and nations under a common system of ethics, based on eternal verities.