Introduction to Goethean Enquiry – DOWNLOAD with Louise Livingstone – £15 for full recording and handouts
In this seminar we will learn more about Goethe and his imaginal method of enquiry, exploring why his method is so important for the world we are living in today.
Today I’d like to talk about studying and what studying may bring about. To be more specific, I’d like to talk about a crucial meaning of the word study, a meaning which most of us are probably unfamiliar with and which indeed the whole Western world is unfamiliar with and has been for the past 300 years or so. It designates a whole understanding of what study involves and what study can bring about in students and it has fallen by the wayside, where it still lies forgotten, neglected and concealed under the detritus of 3 centuries. But if we clear away the undergrowth and remove the rubbish, we may find that it still shines as if new with a light that may illuminate the world and ourselves. It may even bring about a transformation in our knowledge, both of the world and of ourselves.
The creative project has been an extremely valuable part of the MA course for me. Within the confines of academic demands it is often difficult to move out of the head, indeed this has been one of the very unique challenges of the programme. The degree has offered a number of wonderful opportunities to tackle this issue by actively encouraging a more heart centred and intuitive approach to the content that we are facing here as students. To become more “…consciously aware of our intuitive process…” (Anderson, 2004, p.70) is a refreshing challenge to the more traditional approaches of academic research and engagement. But to be able to open the heart and engage our intuition in a manner that retains a level of conscious awareness and an ability to ‘see’ this process critically, is the real nature of the challenge we face as students. This represents new ground.
In deciding what to do for my creative project I was torn between doing something purely ‘personal’ and perhaps trying to express myself through a new medium and doing something connected to my professional life as an RE teacher. I chose the latter because I wanted my creative project to have implications wider than just the personal, and I wanted to explore ways in which my work on the MA could influence and transform my life and teaching. One of the areas of RE that I had been feeling increasingly passionate about since starting the MA was the issue of female spirituality and the divine feminine. I increasingly noticed a disconnect between my own understanding of spirituality and the experiences of the women around me, and the ‘religion’ I was teaching in the classroom. I was also inspired by the work of Kripal and McGilchrist in particular in their understanding of education and the learning process, and how in our institutions it has been increasingly dominated by empirical enquiry to the exclusion of the archetypically feminine qualities and processes like intuition, embodiment and creativity. I wanted my project to develop my understanding of female spirituality, as well as integrating it with my professional life. I also felt strongly about the representation of women in the RE classroom and wanted to address this as well.
Following the aims of transformational learning theory and using art as a means of expression I have attempted to do an exercise that showed how I have engaged with the materials presented in the MA course. At the beginning of my studies I was not familiar with most of the themes that are at the core of the MA programme, such as symbolism or divination. During these years of learning I have discovered and rediscovered different areas of knowledge that have impacted me in many ways and that have contributed, and will still be adding, to my growth as a person. Therefore I wanted to create something that reflected what the MA has meant for me. In my essay I will present a review of the process that lead me to create the collage I entitled “Looking out of my window”, attempting to explain its symbolism and the challenges I have faced while doing it.
“At the age of 45 my heart literally broke. A boyfriend finished a relationship unexpectedly and a few days later I suffered a heart attack. My understanding as an Arts Psychotherapist is that there is no delineation between mind and body, so it did not surprise me that my heart physically mirrored my actual emotions of grief and abandonment.”
Meeting the World Through the Heart with Louise Livingstone – 25 July 2021 – 3pm-5pm (UK time) – via Zoom – £15
As Iain McGilchrist states in his book The Master and His Emissary, “The model we choose to understand something determines what we find….Our first leap determines where we land” (2012, p.97). Expanding our enquiry deeper into the imaginal realms, in this session we continue to take the imagination seriously and move into our heart space; known through various discourses as an organ of imaginal perception.
We are excited to announce that the Centre for Myth, Cosmology and the Sacred is celebrating its first birthday! Over the past twelve months, via our online lectures, seminars and talks, we have had the pleasure of connecting with large numbers of you over Zoom; meeting old friends and making new ones. Each day (from Monday to Thursday), we will be releasing an online lecture for you to watch/listen to. On Friday 30th, we will be hosting an on-line, celebratory coffee morning via Zoom at 11am (BST), where Angela, Mary and Louise will be available for informal chat.
Sharon’s talk took place on 23rd February 2021. This package contains the full recording of both Sharon’s talk and the Q&A afterwards. In this talk, Sharon explores the idea that each soul has a unique way of being, a unique purpose, which is essential not only to its own growth, but to the world’s own becoming.
20 minute downloadable lecture. This lecture presents the idea that the heart is far more important and complex than our dominant way of generating knowledge about the world makes possible
Research Lecture – The heart speaks: reimagining the heart for contemporary times, with Louise Livingstone £10
60 minute downloadable lecture. In this lecture, Louise introduces her PhD research that makes a case for heart knowing as a vitally important human capability which has, over the course of many hundreds of years, been divorced from, and rendered subservient to, knowledge about the world as generated through the brain.
This paper will discuss the relevance of the ‘four levels of interpretation’ of medieval theology – literal, allegorical, moral, anagogical – to the teaching of astrology at both undergraduate and postgraduate level. In an educational system increasingly bound to positivist assumptions a way is required to lead students to a deeper perception, and experience, of the symbolic.
‘It is as if we can study everything about religion, except what makes it fiercely religious’ observes Rice University religious studies professor Jeffrey Kripal. Well, what does make religion fiercely religious? Should this highly-charged, sensual, devotional, or emotive impulse indeed find a place in academic studies?
In his work on Sufi mystics, Henry Corbin uses the term mundus imaginalis to designate the psychic space in which the “super-sensible”reality of dreams, theophanies and spiritual beings are manifested, in a visionary sense, to the individual. T
This lecture was originally given at Christ Church Canterbury University in 2017 as the opening of a research day on creativity in research. In it Angela discusses combining the two ways of knowing – the objective and the intuitive
In this contribution to Daniela Boccassini’s wonderful journal, I talk about my ‘moments of awakening’ through music, and also the author Fred Gettings’ similar experiences in the Basilica of San Miniato al Monte in Florence.
iRewild in Motion – Reconnect to the Natural World – 6 week course starting 2nd February 2022 – 7pm-8pm (UK time) – via Zoom – £40 full course with certification
An exciting collaboration between the Centre for Myth, Cosmology and the Sacred and iRewild. This course aims to support and improve your health and wellbeing in deep connection with nature, while at the same time increasing your love for learning about nature as you freely walk, explore, and reconnect with the natural world.
The inspiration for my creative project came when Angela Voss introduced Ficino’s ‘Book of Life’ and the idea of creating an image of the cosmos to contemplate in your home. I had a powerful reaction and decided to create my own version:
A psycho-spiritual self-reflection tool that started the essential conversation that I needed to prepare for my own death.