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HH The Dalai Lama Lecture 2004
Programme

Temenos Academy Foundation Course

FOUNDATION COURSE IN
THE PERENNIAL PHILOSOPHY

The Temenos Academy Foundation Course in Perennial Philosophy from Ian Skelly on Vimeo.

Please note the course for 2015 - 2017 is now fully booked

A TWO-YEAR PART-TIME DIPLOMA COURSE
October 2017 - June 2019

We are now taking bookings for the Two-Year Part-time Foundation Course in the Perennial Philosophy 2017-2019

Part One: The Western Tradition: Oct 2017 - June 2018

COURSE OBJECTIVES
At a time when the premises of secular materialism have infiltrated almost every aspect of contemporary culture, this course offers a vital counterbalance to prevailing assumptions and values, through giving students the opportunity to immerse themselves in major sources of spiritual knowledge and insight. The purpose of the two-year course is to provide an introduction to the universal tradition that is our spiritual heritage, through direct engagement with key texts of both the West and the East.

Part One: The Western Tradition
During Part One, over three terms, students will be introduced to classic sources of mysticism, the visionary imagination and metaphysics in the Western tradition. Through guided reading of the writings of Meister Eckhart and St. Bernard of Clairvaux’s On Loving God, Dante’s Divine Comedy, and the philsophy of Plato and Plotinus, Part One will ground students in the wisdom tradition of the West. Unlike conventional academic courses, it is intended that students will be learning from, not merely about, major representatives of this tradition. For as Plato wrote, ‘Everything that the human spirit undertakes or suffers will lead to happiness when it is guided by wisdom’.


COURSE STRUCTURE: PART ONE

CONTENT: Part One of the course is divided into three modules: (1) Metaphysics, (2) The Visionary Imagination and (3) Mysticism. For details of the content, see under ‘Course Content’ below.

TUITION: Study of the modules will take place over three terms, with weekly meetings led by the module tutor on Tuesday evenings between 7pm and 9pm. Students will be expected to read approximately thirty or forty pages of text each week. Tuition will be conducted by lectures and guided discussions on the content of the previous week’s reading.

ACCREDITATION: In order to receive a Certificate of Completion Students will be required to write one essay of approximately 2000 words for each module and to attend a minimum of 80% of classes. Students who successfully complete both Part One and Part Two, and fulfil these criteria, will be eligible for a Temenos Academy Foundation Course Diploma. However, students may also attend the classes and not write an essay and therefore not receive the Certificate or Diploma.

FIRST TERM: 10 WEEKS
Tuesday 10 October 2017 to Tuesday 12 December 2017

SECOND TERM: 12 WEEKS
Tuesday 9 January 2018 to Tuesday 27 March 2018

THIRD TERM: 10 WEEKS
Tuesday 24 April 2018 to Tuesday 26 June 2018

COURSE CONTENT

FIRST TERM: METAPHYSICS
Weeks 1–5: An introduction to Plato’s account of the creation of the cosmos, the nature of reality and the relationship between knowledge and the real, the mystical vision of the philosopher, the nature of the soul and Plato’s understanding of philosophy as a spiritual practice.
Textual sources: Timaeus, Republic, Phaedrus and Phaedo.
Weeks 6–10: An introduction to Plotinus’ understanding of the One and the Many, the soul’s descent into the body and the path of return to the transcendent.
Textual sources: Selections from the Enneads.

SECOND TERM: THE VISIONARY IMAGINATION
The full text of Dante’s great visionary poem, The Divine Comedy, will be read in English translation. The module will cover the metaphysical and cosmological background to the poem as well as introducing students to the rich heritage of illustrations of the Divine Comedy from medieval to modern times.
Weeks 1–4: Inferno
Weeks 5–8: Purgatorio
Weeks 9–12: Paradiso

THIRD TERM: MYSTICISM
Weeks 1–5: An introduction to the great Christian mystic Meister Eckhart through selected sermons, Biblical commentaries and treatises.
Textual Sources: Sermons, Commentary on John 1, Book of Benedictus, and On Detachment.
Weeks 6–10: An introduction to the mystical theology of love in St. Bernard of Clairvaux.
Textual Source: On Loving God.

PART ONE VENUE
The Art Workers Guild, 6 Queen Square, Bloomsbury
London WC1N 3AT
Nearest underground: Russell Square, or Holborn

COURSE TUTORS
VALENTIN GERLIER MA
(Metaphysics) writer, novelist and musician, is a Faculty Member of the Temenos Academy, where he regularly lectures on Shakespeare, Plato and the Platonic Tradition, as well as a teacher of English Literature and Philosophy at St. James’ Senior Boys School, Ashford. His interests include philosophical and mystical aspects of both Eastern and Western traditions.

DR. JEREMY NAYDLER (The Visionary Imagination) holds a PhD in Theology and Religious Studies and is a Fellow of the Temenos Academy. He has written several books on religious life in antiquity and has long had a love of Dante’s Divine Comedy.

DR. JOSEPH MILNE (Mysticism) is a Fellow of the Temenos Academy, Honorary Lecturer at the University of Kent and Trustee of The Eckhart Society. His main interests are the medieval Christian mystics and the Western tradition of natural law.

Part Two: Eastern Traditions: Oct 2018 - June 2019

During Part Two, over three terms, students will be introduced to textual sources of the perennial philosophy in three major Eastern traditions: Hinduism, Taoism and Islamic Mysticism. Through guided reading of the Bhagavad Gita and the Upanishads; the Tao Te Ching, Chuang Tzu and the Huai Nan Tzu; and ’Attar’s The Conference of the Birds along with the writings of the great Islamic metaphysician Ibn ’Arabi, Part Two will ground students in the wisdom traditions of the East.

COURSE STRUCTURE: PART TWO
CONTENT: Part Two of the course is divided into three modules: (1) Hinduism (2) Taoism and (3) Islamic Mysticism. For details of the content, see under ‘Course Content’ below.

 

TUITION: Study of the modules will take place over three terms, with weekly meetings led by the module tutor on Tuesday evenings between 7pm and 9pm. Students will be expected to read approximately thirty or forty pages of text each week. Tuition will be conducted by lectures and guided discussions on the content of the previous week’s reading.

ACCREDITATION: In order to receive a Certificate of Completion Students will be required to write one essay of approximately 2000 words for each module and to attend a minimum of 80% of classes. Students who successfully complete both Part One and Part Two, and fulfil these criteria, will be eligible for a Temenos Academy Foundation Course Diploma. However, students may also attend the classes and not write an essay and therefore not receive the Certificate or Diploma.

FIRST TERM: 10 WEEKS
Tuesday 9 October 2018 to Tuesday 11 December 2018

SECOND TERM: 10 WEEKS
Tuesday 8 January 2019 to Tuesday 12 March 2019

THIRD TERM: 10 WEEKS
Tuesday 30 April 2019 to Tuesday 2 July 2019

COURSE CONTENT

FIRST TERM: HINDUISM
Weeks 1–5: An introduction to the classic of Hindu religious philosophy, the Bhagavad Gita. The full text will be read.
Weeks 6–10: A study of selected passages from the principal Upanishads, focusing on teachings concerning the Self or atman, the doctrines of rebirth and salvation, and the concept of Brahman. Where possible, the commentaries of Shankara will be used as a guide.
Textual sources: The Bhagavad Gita, and selections from the Upanishads.

SECOND TERM: TAOISM
An exploration of key themes of Taoism, including heaven and earth, life and death, transformation and illumination.
Weeks 1-4: Lao Tzu, Tao Te Ching (complete text).
Weeks 5-7: Selected writings from the Chuang Tzu.
Week 8-10: Selected writings from the Huai Nan Tzu.
Textual Sources: Lao Tzu, Tao Te Ching, and selections from the Chuang Tzu, and the Huai Nan Tzu.

THIRD TERM: ISLAMIC MYSTICISM
Weeks 1-5: A study of the full text of ’Attar’s The Conference of the Birds, introducing basic tenets and practices of Sufism.
Weeks 6-10: An introduction to the work of Ibn ’Arabi, organised according to five themes: creation, the human being, the symbolic universe, self- knowledge, love and beauty.
Textual Sources: Attar, The Conference of the Birds. Ibn ’Arabi, Selections from Fusus al-hikam (The Ringstones of Wisdom), al-Fuyuhat al-Makkiyya (The Meccan Revelations), Ruh al-quds (The Holy Spirit in the Counselling of the Soul), Kitab al-Isfar (The Book of Journeying).

PART TWO VENUE
The Art Workers Guild, 6 Queen Square, Bloomsbury
London WC1N 3AT
Nearest underground: Russell Square, or Hoborn

COURSE TUTORS
Tutor to be confirmed (Hinduism)

SANDRA HILL (Taoism), after completing postgraduate studies in fine art at St. Martin’s School of Art, travelled to the Far East to pursue her interest in the influence of Eastern philosophy on Western art. She lived for four years in Japan, returning to the UK to study both classical philosophical and medical texts. Sandra currently practises Chinese calligraphy, Taoist meditation and acupuncture.

JANE CLARK MA (Islamic Mysticism) is a Senior Research Fellow of the Muhyiddin Ibn ’Arabi Society. She has a Masters degree in Medieval Arabic Philosophy from the University of Oxford, and has been studying, teaching and lecturing on the ideas of Ibn ’Arabi for more than thirty years.

COST
The course fee is £1400 for two years (Part One and Part Two), or £800 for Part One or Part Two only. A non-refundable deposit of £325 will be required by July 31st 2017 in order to secure your place for the full course, the remainder of the fee, £1075, (£475 if booking Part One only) payable by September 30th 2017. For Part Two only, the non-refundable deposit of £325 will be required by July 31st 2018 and the remainder (£475) payable by September 30th 2018. Priority is given to students booking for the whole course. Individual modules will only be offered if spaces are available, at £325 per module. Early booking recommended.

Discretionary concessions are available on application, stating reasons, to temenosacademy@myfastmail.com.

Enrolment
To enrol for the course download and complete the Enrolment Form at the link below
Enrolment Form

On receipt of your payment, a curriculum will be sent to you.

Your enrolment includes an annual membership of the Temenos Academy, and you will be sent the Temenos Academy Review, other publications as issued, and the programme of public lectures and seminars for that year.

Please post the form to:

The Temenos Academy
P O Box 203
Ashford
Kent TN25 5ZT




The Temenos Academy
P.O. Box 203
Ashford
Kent TN25 5ZT

Tel: (01233) 813663
temenosacademy@myfastmail.com


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