Theosophy Wiki arose from an idea that Pablo Sender expressed to Janet Kerschner in the Henry S. Olcott Memorial Library in May 2009. Both were employed in the headquarters of the Theosophical Society in America - Pablo in the library and Janet in the archives. They saw potential for a collaborative encyclopedia to be highly useful as a reference and research tool, and as a repository for historical information. "Wiki" software was selected to facilitate cooperation among editors working on encyclopedic content worldwide. The Kern Foundation supported development efforts and hardware expenses. Mediawiki software, widely known as the platform for Wikipedia, was installed in 2011, and the infrastructure was established.
The blue lotus in our logo is a symbol of knowledge.
Early in 2012, the team realized that the wiki could serve as a tool for study of the Mahatma Letters. The TSA Archives had a set of about 1300 color slides that had been purchased by George Linton from the British Library in 1984. The slides had been scanned as a preservation measure, and the images turned out to be stunningly realistic. Viewing them brings a sense of immediacy, a connection to the writers and their time that is inspiring. The wiki format provided an excellent opportunity to make these high-quality images of the letters available for study by people who might never be able to view the originals in London. After consultation with Vic Hao Chin, Jr., editor of the The Mahatma Letters to A. P. Sinnett Chronological Edition, and other scholars who were visiting the Olcott campus, a three-column format was selected to show the images of the letters with transcriptions to the left and notes to the right. Physical description, publication history, context, and commentary sections were added, along with intra-wiki and external links to more information. Letters missing from the original set of slides have almost all been replaced with black-and-white images taken from microfilm through laborious work by Jon Knebel, who also provided the Cosmological Notes and the Maha Chohan Letter. Ernest Pelletier has also graciously provided images from the collection of color slides belonging to the TS in Edmonton, Canada.
On July 22, 2012, the Theosophy Wiki was demonstrated to the membership of the Theosophical Society in America at the 126th Summer National Convention.
Originally this resource was named the TS Wiki, but when the opportunity came in the summer of 2014 to use a .wiki extension on the World Wide Web, the more descriptive name Theosophy Wiki was adopted. TS Wiki references redirect to www.theosophy.wiki pages.
In December 2015, the wiki was expanded to add Spanish, French, and Russian platforms. In May 2017, Italian was added.
SEE ALSO Plans and announcements in the Community portal.