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Tag Archives: Mysticism

imagesESOTERICISM AND THE COGNITIVE SCIENCE OF RELIGION

CALL FOR PAPERS

An Aries Special Issue

Together with Markus Altena Davidsen (Leiden University), I am setting up a special issue of Aries on “Esotericism and the Cognitive Science or Religion”. At this stage we are looking for abstracts from people who might be interested in contributing a full research article.

Please find details in the CfP, linked here and pasted below. Feel free to spread the word to anyone who might be interested in this project.

Call for Abstracts, Aries special issue on Esotericism and the Cognitive Science of Religion

(Edited by Egil Asprem and Markus Altena Davidsen)

The cognitive science of religion (CSR) and the academic study of Western esotericism have both made a significant impact on religious studies over the past two decades. The study of esotericism continues to deepen our understanding of the historical complexities of religion in the West, and has identified a number of blind-spots related to heterodox religion, radically experiential practices, and overlaps between “religion”, “magic”, and “science”.

Meanwhile, CSR is rapidly changing the way scholars think about and approach key processes of religious practice, adding important new experimental and analytic tools to the scholar’s toolbox. This special issue of Aries aims to explore the potential of bringing these two fruitful fields together. What happens when we apply CSR approaches to the empirical material studied by esotericism scholars? How can key areas of interest in the study of esotericism, such as the notion of (experiential) gnosis, correspondences, imagination, higher knowledge, rejected knowledge, magical thinking, secrecy, and initiation contribute to the development of new approaches in CSR? How can we think about ritual practices such as theurgy, divination, healing, and ceremonial magic in terms of CSR approaches to ritual? Moreover, how can we use CSR approaches to these issues to integrate the study of esotericism more firmly in the broader comparative study of religion?

We are looking to curate research articles that deal with these and related questions. We take an inclusive view of CSR, and are happy to consider approaches from e.g. personality- and social psychology. We are especially interested in hands-on approaches that demonstrate the use of CSR inspired methodology to esoteric subject matters. We look in particular for articles based on contemporary ethnographies, interview or experimental data, but are also open for articles that bring CSR to bear on historical sources. The important thing is that studies should be able to integrate cognitive and psychological perspectives with existing state-of-the-art scholarship on esotericism.

If you want to take part in this special issue, please send us an abstract of your proposed topic by June 15 2015. Please specify as far as possible the empirical scope of your proposed article, as well as the CSR approaches you plan to work with. Include a short bibliography of the key literature you intend to draw on. On the basis of received abstracts, we will invite authors to submit their completed articles for peer review. The deadline for receiving finished manuscripts will be February 1 2016.

 

Relevant subject matter includes but is not limited to:

  • New Age movement
  • Ritual magic
  • Channeling
  • Healing/holistic health
  • Correspondence thinking
  • Kabbalah / esoteric hermeneutics
  • Sex magic
  • Spiritualism
  • Neoshamanism
  • Contemporary paganism
  • Astrology
  • Alchemy
  • Western initiatory societies

 

Relevant CSR approaches include but are not limited to:

  • Epidemiological approaches to the spread of esoteric representations
  • Cognitive optimality theory (e.g., agency detection, promiscuous teleology, minimal counter-intuitiveness, theological correctness)
  • Cognitive ritual theory (e.g., ritual form hypothesis, two modes theory, cognitive resource depletion theory)
  • Embodied cognition
  • Neurocognitive, experimental, and psychological approaches to experiential practices
  • Personality and individual difference correlates for esoteric practitioners (e.g. positive schizotypy, absorption, hypnotizability)
  • Conceptual blending theory

 

Please email your proposed abstract to Egil Asprem (easprem@gmail.com) and Markus Altena Davidsen (m.davidsen@hum.leidenuniv.nl). If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to contact us.

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‘Human Herbs’ – a song by Cold Hands & Quarter Moon: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Au-vyMtfDAs

Posted here by Glenn Rikowski

Glenn Rikowski @ Academia: http://independent.academia.edu/GlennRikowski

Volumizer: http://glennrikowski.blogspot.com

Rikowski Point: http://rikowskipoint.blogspot.co.uk/

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Celestial Dome Inverted

Celestial Dome Inverted

DARK NIGHTS OF THE UNIVERSE

Recess, in conjunction with The Public School New York, Presents:

Dark Nights of the Universe
et nox sicut dies illuminabitur

A four-night theoretical exploration of mysticism in dialogue with Du noir univers, a text by François Laruelle.

April 26th – 29th, 2012

Classes nightly at 7pm

 

Night I: Eugene Thacker – Remote: The Forgetting of the World
Clodagh Emoe – Mystical Anarchism. Screening and discussion. Introduced by Simon Critchley.

 

Night II: Daniel Colucciello Barber – Whylessness: The Universe is Deaf and Blind.

 

Night III: Nicola Masciandaro – Secret: No Light Has Ever Seen the Black Universe

 

Night IV: Alexander Galloway – Rocket: Present at Every Point of the Remote

 

Classes will begin at 7pm. Visitors are welcome to join each day or a selection of days.

Recess will house a temporary library of relevant texts, which visitors may browse and annotate freely throughout Recess’s public hours and during the classes.  The exhibition will feature visual works by  Clodagh Emoe and Aaron Mette, and audio works by Eugene Thacker and Taku Unami.

Participants:

Daniel Colucciello Barber, Simon Critchley, Clodagh Emoe, Alexander Galloway, Nicola Masciandaro, Aaron Mette, Eugene Thacker, and Taku Unami.

Download Du noir univers. The English edition of this essay was first translated and published by Miguel Abreu as “Of Black Universe in the Human Foundations of Color” in the catalogue Hyun Soo Choi: Seven Large-Scale Paintings (New York: Thread Waxing Space, 1991): 2-4. It has been reproduced here with a few slight modifications. The original French essay, titled “Du noir univers: dans les fondations humaines de la couleur,” was published in La Décision philosophique 5 (April 1988): 107-112.

Audio archive of the series available here.

RSVP encouraged: click here.

Download the press release.

Click here to view images.

For image request or more information contact info@recessactivities.org

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‘Human Herbs’ – a song by Cold Hands & Quarter Moon: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Au-vyMtfDAs

Posted here by Glenn Rikowski

Glenn Rikowski @ Academia: http://independent.academia.edu/GlennRikowski

Glenn Rikowski @ ResearchGate: http://www.researchgate.net/profile/Glenn_Rikowski?ev=hdr_xprf

Online Publications at The Flow of Ideas: http://www.flowideas.co.uk/?page=pub&sub=Online%20Publications%20Glenn%20Rikowski

Volumizer: http://glennrikowski.blogspot.com

Rikowski Point: http://rikowskipoint.blogspot.co.uk/

 

Mors Mystica

Mors Mystica

STUDYING ANCIENT MAGIC

Categorisation – Comparison – Materiality

10th-11th June 2015

MF Norwegian School of Theology

Oslo

 

PROGRAMME

 

Wednesday 10th June

Workshop

08.30 Coffee and welcome, Nils H. Korsvoll and Liv Ingeborg Lied

09.00-09.40 Nils H. Korsvoll (MF)

Cruciform Motifs in Syriac Incantation Bowls

09.40-10.20 Victor Ghica (MF)

Voces Magicae and Nomina Barbara in Egyptian Gnostic and Magical Texts: Dynamics of Development

10.30-11.30 Short papers

12.00 Lunch

Lectures

13.00-14.00 David Frankfurter (Boston University)

From Magic to Materiality: Refining an Exotic Discipline

14.00-15.00 Marco Moriggi (Università di Catania)

Jewish Divorce Formulae in Syriac Incantation Bowls

 

Thursday 11th June

Workshop

08.30 Coffee

09.00-09.45 Marco Moriggi

The Relationship between Magic and ‘Official Religion’ in Sasanian Mesopotamia

09.45-10.30 David Frankfurter

Magical Charms from Late Antique Egypt

10.45-11.45 Short papers

12.00 Lunch

13.00-15.00 Excursion: Oslo University Papyri Collection

 

CALL FOR SHORT PAPERS

We invite proposals for short papers (15 mins + 15 mins Q&A) on the workshop theme from PhD-students and Post-docs.

Please send proposals to nils.h.korsvoll@mf.no by May 1st 2015.

 

PARTICIPANTS

David Frankfurter (Boston University)

Frankfurter’s particular interests revolve around theoretical issues addressing the place of magic in religion, the relationship of religion and violence, the nature of Christianisation, and the representation of evil in culture. He teaches on Christian apocalyptic literature, and the documents of early Christianity, including extra-canonical sources, magical texts, and saints’ lives.

Marco Moriggi (Università di Catania)

Moriggi has published extensively on Syriac amulets, as well as Aramaic philology and epigraphy more generally. He also works with Semitics and linguistic theory, and has recently produced a corpus of Syriac incantation bowls.

Victor Ghica (MF Norwegian School of Theology)

Ghica is a trained archaeologist and philologist and works on Christian archaeology, coptology, papyrology and epigraphy. He is a member of the French Institute of Oriental Archaeology and has published on gnostic texts and Coptic and Manichean epigraphy.

The workshop is organised by Liv Ingeborg Lied and Nils H. Korsvoll

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‘Human Herbs’ – a song by Cold Hands & Quarter Moon: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Au-vyMtfDAs

Posted here by Glenn Rikowski

Glenn Rikowski @ Academia: http://independent.academia.edu/GlennRikowski

Some Additions to Academia: February 2015: https://rikowski.wordpress.com/2015/02/27/some-additions-to-academia-february-2015/