Event Policy

University Event Policy

We ask that you please ensure registration for the correct event. Should you require assistance at any time please do not hesitate to contact UPR via email (info@uprs.edu) or phone 323.663.2167 prior to finalizing your registration.

Registration Cancellation Policy

Should your circumstances change and you are unable to attend an event, you must contact UPR by no later than two weeks (14 days) days prior to an event. Should you cancel less than 14 days prior to an event, no refund will be payable.

Refund Processing

UPR will refund any registration fees as per the relevant cancellation policy stated above, within 14 business days of receiving a refund request.

Refunds will only be processed to the credit card or bank account of the individual, organization or institution from which the payment was received. Should payment have been via check you will be contacted to confirm your current mailing address, and a check will be mailed to you.

Event Cancellation or Postponement

Should an event be cancelled or postponed due to unforeseen circumstances, UPR will process a full refund within 90 days of such circumstances becoming known.

If you have any concerns or require clarification, please do not hesitate to contact us.

P: 323.663.2167

E: info@uprs.edu

The Role of Mysticism and Mystical Laws in Divination: The Revised New Art Tarot

SOLD OUT!

Saturday, April 2nd, 2016

10am – 1pm

This three-hour workshop will offer a succinct and practical approach to Hermetism using the Knapp-Hall Tarot, first published in 1929 and recently reprinted by the Philosophical Research Society. Dr. Yolanda Robinson, editor of the new edition, will explain the basic structure of the deck while emphasizing the role that mystery traditions play in understanding its mystical symbolism. The deck encapsulates the philosophy of Manly P. Hall as presented in his encyclopedic Opus, The Secret Teachings of All Ages. Participants will have an opportunity to work with the cards and understand how each Arcanum opens a personal portal that requires a subjective and intimate connection with Spirit. Divination is, after all, a way to access our own divinity and understand our role in forging our destiny. This will be an experiential workshop and you will need your own deck.

Workshop Objectives: 

  • Understand the mystical background of the Revised New Art Tarot through its basic Hermetic structure.
  • Learn to use the Tree of Life as a personal mandala that opens itself to intimate connections and interpretations. 
  • Approach divination as a magical alchemical tool for self-inquiry and potential personal transformation. 

Your Teacher:

Yolanda M. Robinson, Ph.D, has been researching Hermetic traditions and working with Tarot for over thirty years. She also specializes in shamanism and mystical traditions. Dr. Robinson is a retired Foreign Service Officer and is presently on the faculty of the University of Philosophical Research.  

 


The University of Philosophical Research

3910 Los Feliz Blvd. Los Angeles 90027

323.663.2167 ext.112

Easter: The Secret of Life Everlasting

Christians believe that Jesus died for the sins of the world. In ancient Greece, there was a tradition of making a particular individual into a scapegoat who symbolically took on the sins of the people and was expelled from the city or put to death. They called this person a pharmakos. Before his death he was clad in holy garments, wreathed with sacred plants, fed on the purest of food. Through his sacred sacrifice, the sins of the city were banished. The fate of a pharmakos was to be insulted, beaten, disrespected in every way and put to death.

The mysteries of Mithras, celebrated their sacrificial rites symbolically, rather than literally. An icon of Mithras slaughtering a bull was used as an altarpiece rather than by enacting the sacrifice itself. “Thou hast saved us by shedding the eternal blood,” reads an inscription not to Jesus, but to Mithras. Although centuries later, Christians would express gratitude to their savior in nearly the same language.

Now, the cross was a sacred symbol for the ancients. Its four arms represented the four elements: earth, air, fire and water. The fifth element, spirit, was bound to materiality by these four elements. Plato refers to the desires of the body as nails that one-by-one fasten the soul to the body. The four nails used to crucify man through hands and feet would have been symbolic of our sensual desires, which attach the soul to the world of the four elements.

In the same way that Osiris was synthesized by the Greeks, with the indigenous god Dionysus to create the the Greek mysteries, other Mediterranean cultures that adopted the mystery religion also transformed one of their indigenous deities into the dying and resurrecting god-man. So the deity was known as Osiris in Egypt, Dionysus in Greece, Attis in Asia Minor, Adonis in Syria, Bacchus in Italy, Mithras in Persia and so on and so on. His forms were many, but essentially he was the same perennial figure whose collective identity was referred to as Osiris-Dionysus.

The Spring festival in the mysteries of Attis, like Easter, lasted for three days. During this time, the myth of Attis was performed as a passion play, just as the story of Jesus was performed as a passion play in the Middle Ages. An effigy of the corpse of Attis was tied to a sacred pine tree and decorated with flowers sacred to both Attis and the Syrian counterpart Adonis. It was then buried in a sepulcher. Like Jesus, on the third day, Attis rose again. The mythologist Sir James Frazier writes, “But when night had fallen, the sorrow of the worshippers was turned to joy, for suddenly a light shone in the darkness: the tomb was opened: the god had risen from the dead and as the priest touched the lips of the weeping mourners with balm, he softly whispered in their ears the glad tidings of salvation. The resurrection of the god was hailed by his disciples as a promise that they too would issue triumphant from the corruption of the grave. On the morrow, the twenty-fifth day of March, which was reckoned the vernal equinox, the divine resurrection was celebrated with a wild outburst of glee. At Rome and probably elsewhere, the celebration took the form of a carnival. It was the Festival of Joy.”

Paul, at around 50 CE, talks of a spiritual resurrection: “Someone will ask, how are the dead raised up? With what body do they come?” Now listen to his answer: “Fool, what you sow does not come to life unless it dies. As for what you sow, you do not sow the body that is to be, but a bare seed, perhaps of wheat or some other grain. What is sown is perishable; what is raised is imperishable. It is sown in dishonor and raised in glory. It is sown in weakness and raised in power. It is sown a physical body; it is raised a spiritual body.”

So what is this secret of rebirth, as played out in countless mythologies throughout history? Perhaps it is an allegory through which we can awaken to our immortal soul – to remind us that man’s problem is that in his ignorance he believes himself to be just a body, one that will grow old, suffer and die. His sense of injustice at the inevitability of this fate leads him to hurt himself and others, either through lust for more life or fear of approaching death. These crimes serve further to bind the soul to the body and so increase man’s suffering.

It seems to me that the greatest tragedy of our time, the greatest tragedy in the modern world, is the atomizing of everything. Each of us is beginning to believe that we are somehow insular beings. And so we identify ourselves as separate beings. I suggest no more of such atomizing. Instead, let us begin to see that we are being reborn as one integral being, one undivided universal Self, belonging to one common human family.

I suggest that this is how we should celebrate Easter. We should celebrate the death of the dark ages of religious fundamentalism and literalism, with its good and evil, its saints and sinners, its insiders and outsiders, and the resurrection of the golden age with its higher level of consciousness in which the old becomes new and the new becomes sacred. Let us listen to our breath a little more. Resolve that we are going to spend a little more time in meditation, a little more time in self-reflection this coming year. This is the beginning of the year to the ancients: Easter is the beginning of the year; the beginning of a new life and a new hope. 


Obadiah Harris is the founder and president of the University of Philosophical Research. Harris has a long and storied career in both mainstream academia and the American metaphysical culture.  He holds a Ph.D. in education administration and supervision from the University of Michigan and an MA in education from Arizona State University, where he was an associate professor of education and director of community education.  

 

Nonduality & Western Psychology

 

An All-Day Workshop with Lionel Corbett & Leanne Whitney

Saturday, March 26th

In the nondual traditions, Reality is an undivided unity, and Consciousness is the Totality and ground of Being. Nondual philosophy provides a radically different view of reality than most of us have been led to perceive. Although we feel that we are individual egoic entities, because of our embodiment and our conditioning, nonduality suggests that this is an illusion; we are all manifestations of the same Consciousness. This workshop will describe the basic ideas of nondual spirituality found within traditions such as Advaita Vedanta, Buddhism, Classical Yoga, Taoism, and the teaching of J. Krishnamurti. We will contrast the nondual perspective with the western psychological tradition, focusing especially on Patanjali’s and Jung’s respective approaches to the psyche, especially the notions of the ego, the ego-Self axis, the conscious/unconscious dynamic, and synchronicity. Open to everyone.

 

Learning Objectives:

  1. Understand the main difference between Eastern and Western approaches to consciousness
  2. Identify the areas where Western psychology meets its limits from the point of view of nondual ideas
  3. Explore synchronicity as a possible meeting ground between these tradition

 

Tuition

$85 credit/$70 non-credit

 

Credits

Continuing Education: 6 CE credits available, see Continuing Education page

PSYCHOLOGISTS

The C.G. Jung Institute of Los Angeles is approved by the American Psychological Association to sponsor continuing education for psychologists. The C.G. Jung Institute maintains responsibility for this program and its content. Please see the individual program for the number of CE credits awarded for each course. Full attendance is required for psychologists to receive credit; partial credit may not be awarded based on APA guidelines. Psychologists report directly to the MCEP using the certificates of attendance awarded at the completion of the course.

CLINICAL SOCIAL WORKERS AND MFTs

The C.G. Jung Institute of Los Angeles is accredited by the California Board of Behavioral Sciences to provide continuing education credits for LCSWs and MFCCs/MFTs (provider # PCE 318). Please see the individual program for the number of CE credits awarded for each course. Only the actual number of hours spent in the educational activity may be claimed for credit.

NURSES

The C.G. Jung Institute of Los Angeles is an accredited provider approved by the California Board of Registered Nursing (Provider #07986). Registered Nurses may claim only the actual number of hours spent in the educational activity for credit.

 

Day Schedule


10:00 Introduction to nondual philosophy

  • Reality as an undivided unity
  • Consciousness as the Ground

11:15 Break


11:30 The ego and the body in Western psychology and in nondual traditions

  • The ego as a construct
  • Psychophysical Being in the Classical Yoga Tradition
  • Nondual thinking; nondual perception; spontaneous presence

12:30 Lunch


1:30 Why is this dialog important?

  • Awakening as a natural process
  • Science and nonduality

2:00 Consciousness in Jung and Patañjali

  • The Jungian Self and the transformation of the God-image
  • The nondual Self and the discrimination of consciousness from the contents of consciousness
  • The conscious/unconscious dynamic

3:00 Break


3:30 Radical acceptance of suffering

  • Self-knowledge in reference to experiencing and witnessing suffering
  • The application of nonduality to psychotherapy and transformational practices

5:00 Course concludes


 

Lionel Corbett, M.D., trained in medicine and psychiatry in England and as a Jungian analyst at the C.G. Jung Institute of Chicago. Dr. Corbett is a core faculty member at Pacifica Graduate Institute, teaching depth psychology, and a professor in the University of Philosophical Research. He is the author of Psyche and the Sacred: Spirituality Beyond Religion, The Religious Function of the Psyche, and The Sacred Cauldron: Psychotherapy as a Spiritual Practice. He is co-editor, with Dennis Patrick Slattery, of Depth Psychology: Meditations in the Field and Psychology at the Threshold: Selected Papers.    

Leanne Whitney, Ph.D., Trained in depth psychology, yoga, and craniosacral therapy, she works with clients one-on-one to resolve mental, emotional, and physical blocks which obscure the ever-present alignment of the authentic Self. She has taught the Reality of nonduality since 2009 and presents papers at domestic and international conferences on consciousness studies. Leanne and Dr. Lionel Corbett recently co-authored Jung and Nonduality: Some Clinical and Theoretical Implications of the Self as the Totality of the Psyche for the International Journal of Jungian Studies.

Nonduality & Western Psychology – Click for ticket options:

Secrets of the Silverscreen: Finding Wisdom in Cinema

Saturday, March 5th, 2016

A six-hour seminar with Jonathan Young and Anne Bach. 

Watching significant movies can be major life events, sometimes altering our perceptions of reality. This workshop will explore our reactions to major titles. Much of the information in a film is visual and reaches us on an emotional level. The symbolism can carry psychological implications. Many SciFi classics, like the Star Wars series, follow the hero’s journey described by Joseph Campbell. Tales of otherworldly contact could suggest discovery of our own inner wisdom. Powerful stories can show us who we are becoming. We will discuss the structure of films for personal significance. Dr. Young will draw on his work as a psychologist and screenplay consultant to reveal the insights to be gained from movies.

Learning Objectives

  1. Identify how plot stages mirror key development tasks.
  2. Demonstrate how scenes from movies can be used to clarify specific life challenges.
  3. Explain the use of dream analysis methods to draw insights from favorite films.

Open to everyone. The course is not just for psychotherapists. It is open to all those interested in archetypal perspectives. The lectures are presented at the introductory level and require no background in mythology, narrative theory, or Jungian psychology. 


Instructors:

Jonathan Young, Ph.D., PSY10231, is a psychologist storyteller, and writer on mythic stories. He assisted mythologist Joseph Campbell at seminars and was the Founding Curator of the Joseph Campbell Archives and Library. His books and articles focus on personal mythology. Dr. Young is on the faculty of the University of Philosophical Research     

Anne Bach, M.S., MFT 38891 is a specialist in uses of writing in psychotherapy. She gives presentations on creativity as inner work at major conferences, and lectures widely on psychological dimensions of expressive writing. Her clinical background includes poetry therapy with residential mentally ill patients.   

Tuition: 

In person: $140 with CE credit   ~   $95 non-credit

Webinar: $95 with CE credit   ~   $45. non-credit

Day Schedule

9:30 am Checking-in begins in Bookstore

10:00 Introduction to archetypal symbolism in films

~ The cinema narrative as window to the unconscious

~ Gaining distance to reflect on pressing problems

11:15 Break (approximate time)

11:30 The quest story as developmental journey

~ How adult psychological challenges are presented in movie plots

~ Tapping resilience by identification with characters

12:30 Lunch Break

1:30 Story and symbol in cinematic narratives

~ Mythological understanding of the main genres of movies

2:30 Break (approximate time)

2:40 Unconscious dynamics and the mythic imagination

~ Using films like dreams – as mirrors of adult issues

~ Withdrawing identification with dysfunctional narratives

3:50 Break (approximate time)

4:00 Deepening the therapeutic relationship

~ Selecting appropriate videos for homework

~ Limits and cautionary considerations

5:00 Course concludes – Total 6 hours (RNs 7 hours)

CE Credit Information:

The material is presented at an introductory level, requiring no background in mythic studies, narrative theory, or Jungian psychology. Non-credit: Those not needing verification of attendance, such as teachers, writers, clergy, and artists – are welcome as non-credit attendees. Spouses, friends, students, and others not needing verification of attendance can also choose the lower non-credit tuition. 

Continuing Education hours are available for psychologists, marriage & family therapists, social workers, nurses, and other mental health professionals. The course meets CE requirements in most states. The certificate of completion will be provided by the Center for Story and Symbol. 

The following CE credits are available:

Psychology, MFT, LCSW, LPCC : 6 CE hours, Nursing: 7 hours. Most teachers must get credits approved by their school administration. Credits are provided by the Center for Story and Symbol. Center courses meet the requirements in most states. 

CE Hours: 

Psychology, MFT, LCSW, LPCC, Ed Psych: 6 CE hours   –   Nursing : 7 hours  Approvals:  Psychology ~ The Center for Story and Symbol is approved by the American Psychology Association to sponsor continuing education hours for psychologists. The Center maintains responsibility for these programs and their contents. CE hours are accepted by the California MCEP program. Full attendance is required for psychologists – No partial credit. The level is introductory for psychologists. 

MFT, LCSW, LPCC ~ California BBS Provider Number PCE 3903  RN ~ Provider approved by the Calif. Board of Registered Nursing, BRN Provider Number CEP 12477 

Teachers ~ Continuing Education courses are customarily approved by immediate supervisors. It is usually sufficient for teachers to attend on a non-credit (auditing) basis and present a receipt for the course. 

The day does not cover Law & Ethics

Secrets of the Silverscreen — Click for Tuition Options:

Solve et Coagula: Rescuing our true self through the art of Alchemy

SOLD OUT!

 

Saturday, November 21st  |  10am – 1pm

The University of Philosophical Research, 3910 Los Feliz Blvd.
Los Angeles, 90027

www.uprs.edu | info@uprs.edu 

Tickets are $25. (SOLD OUT!). 


Solve et Coagula (Dissolve and Coagulate) encapsulates the alchemical process of transformation that starts with Know Thyself and culminates in the allegorical Holy Grail or Philosopher’s Stone.  In this hands-on workshop Dr. Yolanda Robinson will be presenting the principal steps of alchemy while exploring the ways that circumstances and challenges in our lives become opportunities to explore the role that our shadow and our psychic field play in our personal transformation. We will approach the Art of Alchemy as a magical and hermetical tool as used by the esoteric traditions.

We encourage participants to bring a Tarot deck of their choice associated with Hermeticism, Cabala, Rosicrucianism, traditional Marseille, or other mystery schools. The concept behind this workshop is to offer an opportunity for the student of Hermeticism and Divination to prepare the appropriate stage for the winter solstice to become an active ground of meaningful transformation.


Yolanda M. Robinson, Ph.D., holds a Doctorate from the University of California in Los Angeles. She is a retired Foreign Service Officer, and has been researching Hermetic traditions and working with Tarot for over thirty years. Dr. Robinson is a graduate from Builders of the Adytum (B.O.T.A.), founded by Paul Foster Case, and holds a Master’s in Transformational Psychology from the University of Philosophical Research. She is presently conducting research on Hermeticism and Shamanism, and offers personal consultations in Los Angeles. Dr. Robinson is an Adjunct Professor at the University of Philosophical Research.

The Simple Road: A Book Reading with Dr. Obadiah Harris

The Simple Road 

A Book Reading with Dr. Obadiah Harris

Saturday, October 3rd at 1:30PM in the Bookstore

The University of Philosophical Research

3910 Los Feliz Blvd. Los Angeles, 90027

info@uprs.edu  |  323.663.2167

Dr. Obadiah Harris will be sharing passages from his newest book, The Simple Road, published this September by Tarcher/Penguin.  Copies of the book will be available for sale and signing. The Bookstore will be open until 3pm.


Tarcher (September 1, 2015). “This elegant, concise guide by the founder of the University of Philosophical Research distills a lifetime of spiritual seeking into one beautiful, unforgettable blueprint for inner growth.”

“When you grow exhausted with all of today’s spiritual programs, axioms, seminars, and techniques; when you feel fatigued from searching and cannot find a way forward; when it seems that years of seeking have netted so little – throw yourself upon the essential truths in this book…It can be lifesaving.” –Mitch Horowitz, from the introduction.

For more than a half-century, Obadiah Harris has studied the spiritual path, holding ministerial pulpits in traditions ranging from Pentecostalism to New Thought, and directing programs in continuing education, community-outreach, and distance-learning at major universities. As a scholar and seeker, Harris has traversed and helped shape broad swaths of our modern spiritual landscape. Now, he distills the insights he has found — all of them potent, powerful, and, above all, useful — in The Simple Road.  

The Simple Road is balm for parched souls. Whatever tradition you belong to, or if you belong to no one tradition, The Simple Road helps you locate the thread of universality that runs through all faiths, and leads you to practices, prayers, methods, and parables that lift your daily journey to a higher, better place.”


Obadiah Harris is the founder and president of the University of Philosophical Research. Harris has a long and storied career in both mainstream academia and the American metaphysical culture.  He holds a Ph.D. in education administration and supervision from the University of Michigan and an MA in education from Arizona State University, where he was an associate professor of education and director of community education. For almost two decades at Arizona State he designed programs in community outreach and in adult and continuing education. Harris has held numerous ministerial pulpits and collaborated with figures of major influence in contemporary spirituality, including Ernest Holmes (1887-1960). Born in northeastern Oklahoma, he lives in Los Angeles. 

Inner Life of the Holidays: Symbols and Rituals of Renewal

 

Inner Life of the Holidays – Symbols and Rituals of Renewal 

Saturday, September 12th, 2015

A six-hour seminar with Jonathan Young and Anne Bach. As nights begin to grow longer, festivities stimulate the senses and stir poignant memories. Popular stories, customs, music and images are rich with nostalgia, awakening hopes for fulfillment. Archetypal aspects of such traditions can be guides to personal integration and psychological maturity.

This course investigates seasonal issues as opportunities for growth. Instruction includes coming to terms with emotional vulnerability, and self-care for those in helping professions. The main focus is on autumn and winter events, but other special days are considered as well, in this exploration of the psychological dimensions of gatherings and celebrations.

Open to everyone. The course is not just for psychotherapists. It is open to all those interested in archetypal perspectives. The lectures are presented at the introductory level and require no background in mythology, narrative theory, or Jungian psychology. 


Instructors:

Jonathan Young, Ph.D., PSY10231, is a psychologist storyteller, and writer on mythic stories. He assisted mythologist Joseph Campbell at seminars and was the Founding Curator of the Joseph Campbell Archives and Library. His books and articles focus on personal mythology. Dr. Young is on the faculty of the University of Philosophical Research     

Anne Bach, M.S., MFT 38891 is a specialist in uses of writing in psychotherapy. She gives presentations on creativity as inner work at major conferences, and lectures widely on psychological dimensions of expressive writing. Her clinical background includes poetry therapy with residential mentally ill patients.   

Tuition: 

In person: $140 with CE credit   ~   $95 non-credit

Webinar: $95 with CE credit   ~   $45. non-credit

Learning Objectives:

- Discuss psychological elements of festive gatherings.

- Explain how archetypal patterns appear in seasonal customs.

- Describe how life-stage issues are stimulated by holidays. 

- Detect how weather shifts impact inner experience.

- Assess underlying issues in holiday stress.

- Recognize how personal rituals can aid fulfillment. 

Day Schedule:

10:00: Underlying emotions in family gatherings

    – Expectations and realizations

    – Psychological dimensions of gift giving

11:15 – Break (approximate time)

11:30: Seasonal activities as yearning for illumination

    – Popular films as representations of nostalgia and longing

    – Effects of music, television, and public events

12:30 – Lunch Break

1:30: Winter rituals, religious observances, and symbolism

    – Traditions and their psychological dimensions

    – Archetypal readings of ancient images

2:30: Ancient stories and modern enactments

    – Familiar tales and personal renewal

    – How holidays influence personal mythology

3:00 - Break (approximate time)

4:00: Unconscious elements of the season

    – Hopes, losses, excesses and rewards

5:00 – Course concludes – Total 6 hours (RNs 7 hours)

CE Credit Information:

The material is presented at an introductory level, requiring no background in mythic studies, narrative theory, or Jungian psychology. Non-credit: Those not needing verification of attendance, such as teachers, writers, clergy, and artists – are welcome as non-credit attendees. Spouses, friends, students, and others not needing verification of attendance can also choose the lower non-credit tuition. 

Continuing Education hours are available for psychologists, marriage & family therapists, social workers, nurses, and other mental health professionals. The course meets CE requirements in most states. The certificate of completion will be provided by the Center for Story and Symbol. 

The following CE credits are available:

Psychology, MFT, LCSW, LPCC : 6 CE hours, Nursing: 7 hours. Most teachers must get credits approved by their school administration. Credits are provided by the Center for Story and Symbol. Center courses meet the requirements in most states. 

CE Hours: 

Psychology, MFT, LCSW, LPCC, Ed Psych: 6 CE hours   –   Nursing : 7 hours 

Approvals: 

Psychology ~ The Center for Story and Symbol is approved by the American Psychology Association to sponsor continuing education hours for psychologists. The Center maintains responsibility for these programs and their contents. CE hours are accepted by the California MCEP program. Full attendance is required for psychologists – No partial credit. The level is introductory for psychologists. 

MFT, LCSW, LPCC ~ California BBS Provider Number PCE 3903 

RN ~ Provider approved by the Calif. Board of Registered Nursing, BRN Provider Number CEP 12477 

Teachers ~ Continuing Education courses are customarily approved by immediate supervisors. It is usually sufficient for teachers to attend on a non-credit (auditing) basis and present a receipt for the course.   


Inner Life of the Holidays – Symbols and Rituals of Renewal

The Art of Buddhism Lecture Series

The Art of Buddhism

With Debashish Banerji Ph.D. 

This course will trace Buddhism through its visual culture from its beginnings in India in the 3rd. c. B.C.E. to modern times, considering the principal sects of Buddhism and their spread through Central, Southeast and East Asia.

$10/Lecture or $15/Day. 

The Art of Buddhism Lecture Series
Lecture Number:


Lecture 1: Introduction – Life of the Buddha, philosophical basics and history of early Buddhism

Saturday, July 11th, 10:30am-11:30am / Q&A 11:30-12:00pm

This lecture will introduce the series, looking at the cultural and philosophic context of the emergence of Buddhism in India around the 5th c. B.C.E. and trace the life and teachings of Gautama Buddha. 

Lecture 2: Stupas, stambhas and storytelling – the early aniconic phase of Indian Buddhism

Saturday, July 11th, 1:00pm-2:00pm / Q&A 2:00-2:30pm

This lecture will explore the objects and ideas representing Buddhism in its early public expansion in India under the patronage of the Mauryan emperor Ashoka and his successors.

Lecture 3: The appearance and evolution of the Buddha image, and the Ajanta caves

Saturday, July 25th, 10:30am-11:30am / Q&A 11:30-12:00pm

This lecture will trace the development of the Buddha image in India from its appearance in two styles around the 1st. c. C.E. to its becoming an aesthetic icon and India’s principal cultural export around the 4th c. C.E. We will also visit the 5th c. cave sites of Ajanta to look at the sculpture and some of the finest paintings of India.

Lecture 4: The early spread of Buddhism – the Silk Road, Dunhuang and Bodhisattva cults

Saturday, July 25th, 1:00pm-2:00pm / Q&A 2:00-2:30pm

In this lecture we will consider the spread of early Buddhism along the Silk Route and the the variety of Buddhist sects that found representation in the cave sites of Mogao in Dunhuang in the Taklamakan desert on the western fringe of China. This will introduce early Mahayana bodhisatvas such as Avalokiteshvara, Maitreya and Manjushri.

Lecture 5:  Theravada Buddhism – Buddhism in Sri Lanka, Myanmar and Thailand

Saturday, August 8th, 10:30am-11:30am / Q&A 11:30-12:00pm

In this lecture, we will consider the art of Theravada Buddhism as expressed in countries predominantly practicing Theravada, which is strongly focused on monasticism and meditation.

Lecture 6: The cult of Vairochana and the Flower Garland Sutra, Borobudur

Saturday, August 8th, 1:00pm-2:00pm / Q&A 2:00-2:30pm

This lecture discusses the cult of the transcendental Buddha Vairochana and the early expressions of this form of Buddhism, particularly as expressed in the spectacular Javanese mandala-mountain Borobudur.

Lecture 7: Western Pure Land Buddhism in China, Korea and Japan

Saturday, August 22nd, 10:30am-11:30am / Q&A 11:30-12:00pm

In this lecture, we will look at Pure Land Buddhism, a spin-off of the Vairochana cult dedicated to Amitabha Buddha that grew very popular in China, Korea and Japan

Lecture 8: Tantric Buddhism in Tibet, China. Mongolia and Japan

Saturday, August 22nd, 1:00pm-2:00pm / Q&A 2:00-2:30pm

In this lecture we will consider Tantric or esoteric Buddhism, with its meditation diagrams (mandalas), magical incantations (mantras) and multi-limbed deities embracing their female counterparts (yab-yum).

Lecture 9: Chan/Zen Buddhism

Saturday, September 5th, 10:30am-11:30am / Q&A 11:30-12:00pm

In this lecture we will look at the art of Chan Buddhism, a sect that developed in China from the teachings of the Indian teacher Bodhidharma and then spread to Japan, where it is called Zen.

Lecture 10: Buddhism in the Modern World

Saturday, September 5th, 1:00pm-2:00pm / Q&A 2:00-2:30pm

In this last lecture, we will consider the modern and contemporary manifestations of Buddhist art, seeing how the sects dealt with above continue to produce artworks and how individuals practicing Buddhism in the modern world have expressed themselves.

Abrahamic Traditions: Thursdays, May 21st – June 18th

This ten week course will examine the historical development of the three great monotheistic traditions, Judaism, Christianity and Islam which each trace their lineage to the biblical patriarch Abraham. Commonalities and differences between the religions will be explored with a focus on understanding the historical roots of contemporary issues stemming from these three traditions. 

Free! RSVP at: info@uprs.edu

 

Thursday, May 21st:


Lecture 1 – Introduction to the World of the Patriarchs 1:30-2:30pmThis lecture will introduce students to the course and will focus on the pre-biblical world of the Middle East, including a discussion on the Epic of Gilgamesh, the Babylonian creation myth the Enuma Elish and the religion of Canaan as understood by the archaeological discovery of the ancient Canaanite city of Ugarit. We will also examine the Documentary Hypothesis in regards to the composition of the Torah, the first five books of the Hebrew Bible.

Lecture 2 – Abraham, Faith and the Covenant with God 3:00-4:00pmThis lecture will introduce students to the course and will focus on the pre-biblical world of the Middle East, including a discussion on the Epic of Gilgamesh, the Babylonian creation myth the Enuma Elish and the religion of Canaan as understood by the archaeological discovery of the ancient Canaanite city of Ugarit. We will also examine the Documentary Hypothesis in regards to the composition of the Torah, the first five books of the Hebrew Bible.

 

Thursday, May 28th:


Lecture 3 – Exodus and the Birth of Israel 1:30-2:30pmThis lecture will focus on the story of Moses and the Exodus and its importance to the Jewish tradition. The entry of the Israelites into Canaan under Joshua and the period of the Judges will be briefly examined with emphasis placed on the creation of the monarchy and a united Israel

Lecture 4 – Exile, Empire and the Age of Prophesy 3:00-4:00pmThis lecture will discuss the conquest of Israel by Assyria, the Babylonian invasion of Judah and subsequent exile and the birth of Biblical prophetic tradition.  The influence on Jewish theology by the Persian Zoroastrian tradition and Hellenization resulting from the conquest of Alexander the Great will also be discussed.

 

Thursday, June 4th:


Lecture 5 – Jesus of History, Jesus of Faith 1:30-2:30pmThis lecture will explore what can be known of the historical Jesus and his relationship to the Jewish tradition. The development of the New Testament scriptures, including the four canonical gospels and the letters of Paul will also be explored.

Lecture 6 – The First Christians 3:00-4:00pmThis lecture will examine the early Jesus movement and how it eventually separated from Judaism to become an independent religion.  The diversity of early Christianity will be explored, with special emphasis placed on the Gnostic Christians and the process in which Christian dogma developed and was adopted.

 

Thursday, June 11th:


Lecture 7 – Islam 1:30-2:30pmThis lecture will introduce the traditional narrative of the life of Mohammad and the revelation of the Qu’ran.  It will include a discussion of the Five Pillars of Islam and will explore the commonalities and differences between Islam, Judaism and Christianity. 

Lecture 8 – Logos and Gnosis 3:00-4:00pmThis lecture will examine some of the key theological debates which arose in response to the “re-discovery” of Greek philosophy, in particular the thought of Aristotle. It will also explore the mystical strands that appear in each tradition, with special emphasis being made upon connections to Platonism and the development of nature mysticism. 

 

Thursday, June 18th:


Lecture 9 – Enlightenment and Modernity 1:30-2:30pmThis lecture will explore the challenges faced by all three of the western monotheistic traditions with the advent of the Enlightenment and Modernity. The development of religious fundamentalism as a response to these challenges will also be discussed.

Lecture 10 – The Monotheistic Faiths in the 20th Century and Beyond 3:00-4:00pmIn this concluding lecture, the consequences of the religious response to the challenges of the Enlightenment and modernity will be explored. Special focus will be placed on the question of religious fundamentalism and extremism.

 

Nick Mather has an undergraduate degree in philosophy from Metropolitan State College of Denver and holds a graduate degree in Religious Studies from the University of Denver. He is currently a doctoral candidate in the Philosophy, Cosmology and Consciousness program at the California Institute of Integral Studies in San Francisco. His areas of specialty include the history of religion, environmental virtue ethics and religion and ecology. He has been teaching a variety of religious studies and philosophy courses at several area community colleges for the last ten years.

 

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