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The Imaginal Cosmos: Astrology, divination and the sacred

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This book is a collection of essays from a conference held at the University of Kent in 2006, and marks the inauguration of the MA in the Cultural Study of Cosmology and Divination which ran there until 2011. Its twelve essays by distinguished authors mark the beginnings of a new approach to the study of astrology in an academic context. As Dr Geoffrey Cornelius says in the Introduction, “the study of ‘esoteric’ subject-areas such as divination, astrology and magic poses a challenge to prevailing academic approaches and to deeply held modern presuppositions concerning mind and reality. How are we to bring scholarship to bear on a mode of sympathising with the world which may depend in large part on an intuitive realisation and a poetic, imaginative ‘turning around’ from theoretical evaluation and historical survey towards a participation mystique? There are no ready answers to this question, but in is variety of perspectives this volume aims to illustrate the spectrum of the historical, phenomenological, psychological, philosophical and spiritual dimensions of divination in general and astrology in particular, in an attempt to close the divide between speculation and experience, research and operation.”

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