The Theosophical Order of Service

Motto: ‘A union of all who love in the service of all that suffers’.

The TOS is active all over the world, in areas such as emergency relief, education, social welfare, family, rural development, orphanages, justice, peace, healthcare, healing, animal aid, arts and music, ecology and environmental conservation. This work is organised by the members and friends of the TOS, who are chiefly members of the Theosophical Society. For more than one hundred years they have worked in the service of humanity – to relieve suffering wherever it is found. TOS groups world-wide join with each other to help with humanitarian projects internationally.

The TOS embraces people of many different temperaments and approaches towards the art of serving. As an integral part of the Theosophical Society, the TOS offers a place where all can find support and inspiration in their social action and spiritual practice.* TOS workers understand the philosophy behind the TOS and their initiatives are examples of what sets TOS work apart from other humanitarian organisations. The TOS was founded as a way to put Universal Brotherhood into action in the world - a way to make Theosophy practical. The purpose of the TOS is twofold: ‘the unselfish service of the needy and suffering’ and ‘the inner transformation of the server’. The TOS exists worldwide to show that Theosophy has much light to shed on contemporary issues of concern and can help people find meaning in suffering. Its aim is to demonstrate that service founded in spirituality can engender far-reaching good in the world. The TOS considers its collaboration with the Theosophical Society to be an honour.**

Further information is available from: TOS International and you are welcome to read or sign up for the TOS Newsletter. There is more about the art of service and the TOS in the Autumn 2017 and Summer 2014 issues of the theosophical magazine Esoterica.


The TOS was founded in 1908 by Dr Annie Besant, then International President of the Theosophical Society. This was to provide members of the Society with a framework in which they could engage in creative, practical and humanitarian action in a theosophical spirit. Offering the opportunity for involvement in activities which promote the First Object of the Theosophical Society: To form a nucleus of a universal brotherhood of humanity without distinction of race, creed, sex, caste or colour.


The TOS is a non-profit organization. Everyone is a volunteer and donates their time and costs. Funds are raised through local fundraising activities and voluntary donations. There are no administration or governance costs, all funds go to TOS activities. Throughout the year local TOS members arrange their own meetings and organisers, usually making decisions through consensus. In some countries there are regional TOS officers. Some TOS members and friends are doctors, nurses, educationalists and so on, and are able to provide specialist advice and expertise. Many projects have local volunteers including medical doctors and surgeons who work in collaboration with the TOS. The International President of the Theosophical Society is President of the TOS and there is an International Secretary who co-ordinates TOS activities worldwide and from time to time arranges international conferences.

For enquiries or donations for the TOS UK, please contact Atma and Cynthia Trasi at:

* Tim Boyd, International President and President of the TOS.

** Nancy Secrest, TOS International Secretary.