Calendar

Upcoming Events

Fall Term begins Sept 22, 2014

Fall Term begins Sept 22, 2014

Unless noted, all the courses are 10-weeks in length and cost $530. Every term includes both electives (some of which may only be offered once per year) and regularly scheduled Certificate...

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Classical Horary Astrology (take any time)

Classical Horary Astrology (take any time)

Course available beginning July 2 Primary Instructor: J. Lee Lehman This is not a beginner level course. You will need a background in natal astrology This course can be used as...

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The Key to Classical Methods: Workshop on Essential Dignities (take any time)

The Key to Classical Methods: Workshop on Essential Dignities (take any time)

Instructor: J. Lee Lehman, PhD Independent study. Students have 4 months to complete the assignments. This short course can be taken anytime as an independent class and as a prelude for...

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August 2: FREE Webinar on the Delphic Oracle Astrology Software

August 2: FREE Webinar on the Delphic Oracle Astrology Software

TIME: August 2, 2014 from 1:00 pm - 2:30 pm PDT(4:00 pm - 5:30 pm EDT)   If you have found yourself increasingly interested in Hellenistic techniques, join this webinar! Hank Friedman,...

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August 3: Erin Sullivan Workshop on The Elegance of the Solar System: Retrograde

August 3: Erin Sullivan Workshop on The Elegance of the Solar System: Retrograde

August 3, 2014 Part 1: Inner Planets Retrograde ($39) 9 am - Noon PDT (12 pm - 3 pm EDT) On August 3, Erin Sullivan presents part 1 of the Elegance of...

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Aug 16: FREE Webinar on The Light of the Heavens: An Introduction to Jyotish

Aug 16: FREE Webinar on The Light of the Heavens: An Introduction to Jyotish

August 16, 2014 1:00 pm-2:30 pm Pacific Daylight Time (4:00 pm-5:30 pm EDT) Senay Yangel and Gary Gomes will present an introduction to Vedic (Jyotish) Astrology in this special international webinar...

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Sept 6: FREE Webinar on Mundane Astrology from a Spiritual Point of View with Sol Jonassen

Sept 6: FREE Webinar on Mundane Astrology from a Spiritual Point of View with Sol Jonassen

Saturday, Sept 6, 2014From 1:00 pm - 2:30 pm Pacific Daylight Time(4:00 pm - 5:30 pm EDT) Astrology reveals the inner dynamics of a country. People who rise to prominence have...

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By outward appearances, Neo lived an unremarkable life. He slept, ate, went to work. Yet a nagging feeling something was not as it appeared persisted. His search led him to take the red pill, and wake up to a more-real reality he never before imagined.

Nice plot for the sci-fi hit movie The Matrix. But screenwriting siblings the Wachowskis consciously tipped their hats to the philosophy of the ancient Greeks. The admonition to "Wake Up!" has a long history in Western culture.

Of course, the Greeks didn't have a red pill. But they did have a sophisticated theories of of the meta-physical. In the agora and in their living rooms, philosophers debated how creation moved from a transcendent unity, the One, to the multiplicity of manifestations populating our mundane world. These "theories of emanations" provided model they used to explore how to (re)unite with that transcendent, divine "light."

These "lovers of wisdom," were not simply talking about ephemeral theories, they were, in the words of French scholar Pierre Hadot, pursuing "philosophy as a way of life." They developed practical techniques – "spiritual exercises" – to cultivate an interior landscape conducive to the experience of joy; compassion and equanimity in the face of suffering; as well as emotional and mental self-mastery. In other words, such exercises blazed a Western path toward enlightenment, toward connecting oneself to a more direct experience of the divine light.

Such exercises were familiar (and practiced by) the Greek and Roman philosophers, including those involved with the development of astrology. Pieces of this knowledge were preserved in classical texts, inherited by the early Catholic Church and preserved in monastic orders.

However, unlike the early days of the Church, the Greeks and Roman philosophers did not necessarily divorce themselves from the mundane affairs of daily life to contemplate mystical union. Instead they saw their ordinary actions and reactions as a kind of laboratory for studying themselves, their thoughts and their reactions.  Through vigilant self-examination, questioning and reflection, they sought to discover how to shift emotions and thought processes.

One key concept was prosoche, an ever-vigilant attention to oneself. Something akin to today's practice of mindfulness, prosoche necessitated an around-the-clock witnessing of one's actions, emotions and thoughts.  Insights gained from this self-observation provided the raw ingredient for discovering how one's psyche functioned. This, in conjunction with other exercises, provided a formula for achieving more expanded states of awareness which created a fertile ground for union with one's divine spark.

 


Donna Woodwell is an instructor at Kepler and has worked with these exercises as part of her own metaphysical training, which has included shamanic healing, Hermetic magic, and the spiritual exercises of St. Ignatius.

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