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Theosophical Encyclopedia

Dominican Republic, Theosophy in the

There are documents indicating the existence of Theosophical activity in this Caribbean nation in the early twentieth century. On September 19, 1928, a lodge with the name “Alcione” was founded in Santo Domingo, under the auspices of the Cuban society with Esperanza Hopgood acting as President and Floripez Mieses Carbonell as Secretary. This lodge would later be presided over by Teodulo Pina Chevalier, who was the driving force of the Theosophical movement in this country until it went dormant in the mid 1950’s. There is also historical evidence of lodges and groups existing in other cities in the Dominican Republic during that time.

Interest in Theosophy arose again in the 1970’s and, with the mentorship of Dr. Miguel Charneco of the Puerto Rican society, became sufficiently structured to allow the formation of a new lodge in Santo Domingo the following decade. Atma Lodge was chartered by Adyar on June 8, 1987. This lodge has been active uninterruptedly since its charter. Jose Arnemann, Ondina Duran, Felipe de Castro and Miguel Saviñon have presided over this lodge throughout the years.

With the continued support of Dr. Charneco and Magaly Polanco, interest in Theosophy continued to spread within the island nation and eventually a new lodge was formed in the city of Puerto Plata. Nueva Aurora Lodge was chartered by Adyar on November 16, 1998. It has been presided over by Carlos Rivera, Melania Rochttis, Rafael Almonte Artiles and Milton Garcia.

In addition, study groups have been formed in the cities of Sosua and San Cristobal. The lodges and study groups in the Dominican Republic were ascribed to the Puerto Rican Section until 2003, when Mrs. Radha Burnier decided to separate the two nations making them both Presidential Agencies. Since then, Magaly Polanco has acted as Presidential Agent in the Dominican Republic.

This Agency has maintained close ties with other countries and holds seminars and workshops with international speakers regularly twice yearly. Amongst these speakers have been Isaac Jauli, Maria Parisen, Juan Vinas, Fernando Torrijo, Terry Hunt and Nelda Samarel.

Miguel Saviñon

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