Theosophical Publishing House (Wheaton)

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Joy Mills Building
Exterior of TPH warehouse
Interior of TPH warehouse

Theosophical Publishing House (Wheaton) is the publishing arm of the Theosophical Society in America, which is affiliated with the Theosophical Society based in Adyar, Chennai, India. This enterprise is loosely connected with similarly named publishing houses at Adyar, India and at Quezon City in The Philippines. Formerly, another publishing house was in London, England.

Founding of TPH

The Theosophical Publishing House in Wheaton was formed as the successor to the Theosophical Press after an international agreement among the various publishing companies of the Theosophical Society at the World Congress in Salzburg in 1966. The decision was ratified by the TSA's Board of Directors on September 1, 1966, creating a close affiliation with the Adyar and London publishing houses of the same name.[1]

Quest Books

Shortly before TPH was established, a new line of paperbacks was developed, using the imprint Quest Books. The first book issued was The Essential Unity of All Religions by Bhagavan Das, a perennial favorite. In 1969, How Many Lifetimes was released as the first of several Quest Books Films. Miniature books followed, and another line called "ReQuest," in the 1970s.

Building projects

Originally TPH was housed in the L. W. Rogers Building on the headquarters campus in Wheaton, Illinois. With the growth associated with the paperback business, new buildings had to be constructed. On May 19, 1969, ground was broken for what is now called the Joy Mills Building, and the cornerstone was laid on July 18. That structure houses the editorial staff, business offices, and shipping department; it also provides space for the Quest Bookshop and some residential space for staff and visitors.[2] The building was expanded in 1986 the with the Victor Russell Memorial Wing, and in 2005-2006 extensive remodeling took place.

Recent history

By 1985 the publishing house had sales over $800,000 per year. The company used book salesmen, national advertising programs, and exhibits at the American Booksellers Conventions to advertise.[3]

In 2011, TPH started exploring the idea of e-books, with encouragement from John Kern and The Kern Foundation. Current releases and selected back-list titles are being converted to the major e-book formats for devices such as Nook and Kindle. A few books have been released in audio formats, including Ed Tick's War and the Soul in 2008 and C. W. Leadbeater's The Chakras in 2014.

Wisdom Eye 1991.jpg

Publications

These are examples of some significant works published by TPH:

  • Tenzin Gyatso, the Fourteenth Dalai Lama. The Opening of the Wisdom-Eye. 1981.
  • Cornell, Judith. Mandala: Luminous Symbols for Healing. 1995.
  • Tick, Ed. War and the Soul. 2005.
  • De Souzenelle, Annick. The Body and Its Symbolism. 2015. Translated from the French by Christopher Chaplin and Tony James.
TPH logo, 1969
TPH logo, 1974

Awards

TPH has been recognized in publishing circles with several awards:

Year Award Title Author
1995 Benjamin Franklin Award from Publishers Marketing Association - New Age – Category 21 Mandala: Luminous Symbols for Healing Judith Cornell
1996 Award of Excellence from Mind Body Spirit Magazine Mandala: Luminous Symbols for Healing Judith Cornell
1997 Benjamin Franklin Award from Publishers Marketing Association Mary’s Vineyard: Daily Meditations, Readings and Revelations Andrew Harvey
1998 Benjamin Franklin Award from Publishers Marketing Association - Psychology/Self-Help Category Marry Your Muse: Making a Lasting Commitment to Your Creativity Jan Phillips
1998 The Athena Award from Mentor Newsletter Marry Your Muse: Making a Lasting Commitment to Your Creativity Jan Phillips
2005 Book of the Year Award (BOTYA) in psychology from ForeWord Magazine War and the Soul Ed Tick
2006 Award of Distinction from the International Communicator Awards program War and the Soul Ed Tick
2009 Silver Nautilus Awards in Religion and in Psychology The Fundamentalist Mind: How Polarized Thinking Imperils Us All Stephen Larsen
2009 Best of the Year Award in Psychology by ForeWord Magazine The Fundamentalist Mind: How Polarized Thinking Imperils Us All Stephen Larsen
2013 Nautilus Book Award Gold Winner - Religion and Spirituality (Western) Faith Beyond Belief Margaret P. Johnston
2014 IBPA Benjamin Franklin Gold Winner - Mind, Body and Spirit Category The Esoteric Tarot: Ancient Sources Rediscovered in Hermeticism and Cabala Ronald Decker

Notes

  1. Joy Mills, " Annual Report of the National President," The American Theosophist 55.8 (August, 1967), 184.
  2. Joy Mills, 100 Years of Theosophy in America: 1875-1975. (Wheaton, IL: Theosophical Publishing House, 1987), 172-173.
  3. Joy Mills, 100 Years of Theosophy in America: 1875-1975. (Wheaton, IL: Theosophical Publishing House, 1987), 196.