While I’ve been ruminating on the availability of trees, Peeta has been struggling with how to maintain his identity. His purity of self.
Eleusis: Archetypal Image of Mother and Daughter by Carl Kerényi, translated by Ralph Manheim, part of the Mythos / Bollingen series, a 1991 paperback from Princeton University Press, is part of the collection at the Reading Room.
“The Sanctuary of Eleusis, near Athens, was the center of a religious cult that endured for nearly two thousand years and whose initiates came from all parts of the civilized world. Looking at the tendency to ‘see visions,’ C. Kerényi examines the Mysteries of Eleusis from the standpoint not only of Greek myth but also of human nature. Kerényi holds that the yearly autumnal ‘mysteries’ were based on the ancient myth of Demeter’s search for her ravished daughter Persephone—a search that equates not only with woman’s quest for completion but also with every person’s pursuit of identity. As he explores what the content of the mysteries may have been for those who experienced them, he draws on the study of archaeology, objects of art, and religious history, and suggests rich parallels from other mysteries.” — back cover
Esotericism and the Academy: Rejected Knowledge in Western Culture by Wouter J Hanegraaff, from Cambridge University Press, previously only available as a 2012 hardcover, is due to release as a paperback tomorrow, March 6th, 2014.
“Academics tend to look on ‘esoteric’, ‘occult’ or ‘magical’ beliefs with contempt, but are usually ignorant about the religious and philosophical traditions to which these terms refer, or their relevance to intellectual history. Wouter Hanegraaff tells the neglected story of how intellectuals since the Renaissance have tried to come to terms with a cluster of ‘pagan’ ideas from late antiquity that challenged the foundations of biblical religion and Greek rationality. Expelled from the academy on the basis of Protestant and Enlightenment polemics, these traditions have come to be perceived as the Other by which academics define their identity to the present day. Hanegraaff grounds his discussion in a meticulous study of primary and secondary sources, taking the reader on an exciting intellectual voyage from the fifteenth century to the present day and asking what implications the forgotten history of exclusion has for established textbook narratives of religion, philosophy and science.” [via]
Enchanted Feminism: Ritual, Gender and Divinity Among the Reclaiming Witches of San Francisco by Jone Salomonsen, part of the Religion and Gender series, the 2002 first edition paperback from Routledge, is part of the collection at the Reading Room.
“Many today feel the need to restore a magical, spiritual ground to human existence. One of the most visible responses to this need has been the rise of contemporary pagan Witchcraft, and one of its most interesting voices, Reclaiming. This community was formed over twenty years ago, by feminist Witch Starhawk and friends, to teach others about goddess spirituality and reinvented pagan rituals. It has since succeeded in developing an independent spiritual tradition, fostered partly by the success of Starhawk’s The Spiral Dance and other books, and now has sister communities throughout North America and Europe.
Enchanted Feminism presents the first in-depth study of this important community and spiritual tradition from a consistent gender perspective. In a unique interdisciplinary approach, Dr Salomonson adopts the perspectives of both social anthropology and theology to analyse the beliefs and practices of the Reclaiming Witches. Among many issues, she considers their spiritual search for the ‘Real’, their renunciation of patriarchal religions and attempts to build a new religious identity, their use of ritual and of feminine symbols for the divine, and their involvement with feminist-anarchist politics. The results of her research provide challenging and insightful reading.”
The Hermetic Library Reading Room is an imaginary and speculative future reification of the library in the physical world, a place to experience a cabinet of curiosities offering a confabulation of curation, context and community that engages, archives and encourages a living Western Esoteric Tradition. If you would like to contribute to the Hermetic Library Reading Room, consider supporting the library or contact the librarian.
“In this – the first ever – episode of SittingNow TV, we present the first of four lectures from the ‘Summer of Love’ event put on by Scarlet Imprint back in August.
Ulysses Black is not a name known to the occult community, despite having generated, under different guises, considerable interest through much sought after publications and artwork. As Ulysses Black he assails the issue of identity through performance art and ritual action. From influences such as Joseph Beuys and Hermann Nitsch as well as the Western Magical Tradition he plots a return to mythical Ithaca.”
“The first episode showcases Ulysses Black grappling with the issues of identity, magickal names, performance art and authentic action.” [via]