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Message from Dr Kathleen Raine CBE
(1908-2003)

The Temenos Academy is an association dedicated to the teaching and dissemination of the perennial wisdom, which has been the ground of every civilisation.

Whereas in Shelley's words, 'the deep truth is imageless', the Arts (from architecture, painting, music and poetry, to the songs and dances of the villages and the designs of textiles and pottery), have within every civilisation been the flowering of a vision of the Sacred, embodied in some tradition of spiritual teaching. The arts of the imagination flourish therefore in the Temenos - the precinct of that sacred centre, be that centre temple, synagogue, church, mosque, or the invisible sanctuary within the heart. Since knowledge is universal we seek to learn from all traditions. Within western civilisation, Temenos follows the Platonic and Plotinian tradition from its pre-Socratic origins to the present day.

Our purpose is to study the learning of the Imagination, both in the arts and also in such metaphysical teachings as are likewise the expression of traditional spiritual knowledge. We reject the premises of secular materialism, widespread at the present time, which deny the very ground of meaning and value. W.B. Yeats wrote of the soul:

       Nor is there singing school but studying
       Monuments of its own magnificence

Therefore we look also for contemporary expressions in the arts and other modes of thought which are rooted in that unageing spiritual reality.

Kathleen Raine died in 2003 at the age of 95. To learn more of her work, go to the page devoted to her.