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Mission statement of the ITC: the reason for its existence

To serve humanity as a Spiritual Study and Retreat Centre, inviting people to work on the process of inner transformation.
 


What is unique about the ITC Naarden? (text still under consideration of its  Council)

Since 1925 a wide range of uplifting activities has largely contributed to the uniqueness and very special atmosphere of the ITC. This Centre, in reality a ‘portal’, provides a focus on the finer energies which greatly contribute to its sense of ‘wholeness’ and ‘sacredness’. Visitors and participants of activities, when receptive to its quietness and openness, can thus be greatly helped and inspired. Hence the unique role of ITC Naarden.


Lotus House now ready for use

After the hard work of many, Lotus House was opened for use on November 1st. The Buddhist Retreat Group Sangha Metta, partner in this project and one of our major tenants, already started its first silent retreat that same day! Therefore no time to waste to have a short moment for the opening of this new and beautiful building! Several European Council members, present for the half year meeting, were able to attend as well. Mind you, the official inauguration will take place in June 2020 with our International President Tim Boyd.


Opening by the Chairman of the ITC, Arend Heijbroek, in the living of Lotus House, with architects, builders, workers, representatives of Sangha Metta, Round Table, Wood and Garden, LCC, Activities Committee, and European members of the ITC Council.


The philosophy of Lotus House: future proof

In this opening meeting the architect Michiel Haas presented an introduction of the philosophy behind this project: the building had to be sustainable and energy efficient, with little maintenance costs. Moreover the buildings of Crystal- and Lotus House  had to be connected visibly. If one looks at both buildings now, both reflect the same philosophy of design. As to the zoning plan some limitations had to be faced: the building should be exactly in the same space as the former Arundale House.

 
Crystal Hall, Crystal House and Lotus House now fully integrated and in harmony with the beautiful surroundings.


A sustainable building

As Michiel explained, when theosophists are to construct a building, this should be fully sustainable: that is part of our philosophy, fulfilling our responsibility regarding the environment. Therefore a lot of effort was put into making the building energy efficient. The building is very well insulated with underfloor heating: pleasant and efficient. Heat is being generated by two heat pumps, in case of extreme cold supported by boiler heaters. The building is also sustainable and durable by means of the materials used. The beautiful green succulent plant roof accentuates this sustainability visibly from the outside. The interior is deliberately kept austere. The floor is waxed over the cement screed, walls are only coated: the less material used, the more sustainable the structure. The ten rooms each have their own bathrooms. The living and kitchen are ideal for groups up to forty persons. The ITC considers itself very fortunate with this wonderful and sustainable new building. It is the result of a joint effort: many hardworking and dedicated people were involved here!



The rooms are comfortable and straightforward, with a small practical desk for study, writing or reflection.


Reconstruction Garden of Remembrance started

At the end of November the actual renovation of this garden started. As it is a very special place at our Centre, this project required long and very careful deliberations and preparations by all concerned first: original design, spiritual aspects, personal opinions, choice of trees, time planning. One can understand that everyone looked at the plans to remove old trees with mixed  feelings. The silver spur trees for instance were planted in the late 1930’s, and the Chamaecyparis in the late 1940’s! However, with many trees dead or dying, renovation is unavoidable. After long and careful deliberations with many people the Council took the decision to renovate the garden, to remove certain trees in one time, in order to give the new trees enough light to survive and to avoid disturbances in the garden several times. At the time of this writing, all conifers have been removed, and planting holes have been made on the same places for the new trees. The garden is already full of light now and will have some time of rest before the next steps will be taken. After renovation the Garden of Remembrance will look fine, to grow into its old and bright splendor. It will remain a beautiful place of creative silence and meditation for many of its visitors.

The Garden of Remembrance is awaiting a new life cycle…


Program Latent Powers in Humankind

The ITC and the Dutch Section of the TS decided to organize a two years program on Latent Powers in Humankind together, this being an aspect of the third object of the TS. This subject seems to have been somewhat overlooked during the last decades, amongst others because it is a broad field and can easily result in a superficial or cloudy approach. Therefore it was decided to organize at least seven study days in the Dutch language, and several international seminars on this subject. The first day on November 9th on spiritual experiences showed that this approach is much appreciated: some hundred participants. Please look below at Important days for your diary. We ask your special attention for the International Seminar in June 2020 with a range of top-class speakers. The program of this seminar will be made available as soon as possible.


The day on spiritual experiences

The day Religious and Mystical Experiences of November 9th started with an introduction by Hein van Dongen, The Multiformity of Spiritual Experiences, about the views of William James who made a clear difference between spiritual experiences and theories, considering first hand experiences to be more real than theories. David Nieuwejaers gave the introduction The Dark Nights of the Soul about Christian mystical experiences with two purifying nights. Ingmar de Boer elaborated on the Siddhis as described by Patanjali. Finally, Arjan Lelivelt explained the risks of indulging in spiritual experiences without checks and balances, based on experiences of the Quaker movement: Suspicious Friends, Liminality and Communitas in The Society of Friends. Unfortunately time was too short to organize a forum at the end of this interesting day. Although this is a two years program, time remains a limitation…  The day resulted in several important questions which deserve further exploration, such as: Is there a contradiction between the Law of Karma (which is an invariable law) and Divine Grace? Are spiritual experiences mainly the result of one’s own spiritual efforts, as most Eastern traditions seem to indicate, or are these experiences mainly due to the Grace of God?


Friends day on January 11th

Finally, we ask your attention for the Day of the Friends of the ITC on January 11th 2020. Parcival van Gessel will then talk about some spiritual aspects of the Centre, and about the experiences with Kurt Leland last summer. Furthermore there will be time to exchange views and to talk about several of our plans and experiences. We will start at 13.00 hours in the living of Lotus House (so not in St. Michaels House!).


Important dates for your diary


For more information: http://www.itc-naarden.org/blog/?page_id=400 (see activities agenda)

2020
January, 11
Friends Day (Dutch) 

February, 15
Rituals and Healing (Dutch) 

May, 2 
Working with Energies (Dutch)

June, 12 - 14
The Science of Powers Latent in Humanity, symposium (English)

June, 15 - 19
Seminar with Trân-Thi-Kim-Diêu: Spiritual Powers Latent in Humankind (English)

October, 3
Between Death and Birth (1) (Dutch)

November, 7
The Supernatural Nature (Dutch)

2021
October, 1 - 10
European School of Theosophy “Meditation, Contemplation and Prayer”, with a retreat (English)
 

Projects you might wish to support financially

Lotus House: for European donations use the IBAN account-number NL42 ABNA 0475 4536 46 of Stichting St. Michael, BIC/SWIFT code ABNANL2A.

Olcott Fund: a small fund for travel expenses of lecturers, and scholarships for participants during ITC seminars. Donations payable to St. Michael's Foundation (see footer) mentioning Olcott Fund.

General information: For payments outside Europe you are advised to make 'payments with shared costs'. This means that both parties share relatively low domestic costs. Within Europe be sure, whenever possible, to use a SEPA conform transfer, using IBAN and BIC (SWIFT), without any transaction costs. 


Copyright © 2019, All rights reserved.

St. Michael's Foundation of the International Theosophical Centre
Valkeveenselaan 19 - 1411 GT Naarden - The Netherlands
Telephone +31-(0)35-6945121 - www.itc-naarden.org - Email: info@itc-naarden.org
KvK 41192395 - IBAN NL42 ABNA 0475 4536 46 - BIC/SWIFT ABNANL2A

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