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  • 2006-08-24 17:48 | ESSWE admin (Administrator)
    In reference to the recent announcement of the creation of a chair for the study of esotericism in a Vatican university, a rectification seems to be necessary (prompted by one of our members, PierLuigi Zoccatelli). The official title of the chair is "Religions and unconventional spiritualities" ("Religioni e Spiritualità Non Convenzionali"). This means that the focus of the teaching is not particularly on esotericism, but on the phenomenon of new religious movements as a whole (which may, however, also include aspects of what scholars refer to as "Western esotericism"). The chair has been promoted by a Catholic anti-cult association, the GRIS (www.gris.org) and has been created at the Pontifical University of Saint Thomas Aquinas (also known as "Angelicum", www.angelicum.org). For an announcement of the creation of the chair, with a description of its goals, see the link below. Finally, the text on the New Age for which there was a link in the previous announcement (www.vatican.va/roman_curia/pontifical_councils/interelg/documents/rc_pc_interelg_doc_20030203_new-age_en.html) was not an article by the first holder of the chair, Prof. Michael Fuss, but a confessional analysis of the New Age produced by two official committees of the Catholic Church, the Pontifical Council for Culture and the Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue.


  • 2006-08-12 17:50 | ESSWE admin (Administrator)

    First ESSWE Newsletter out now.

  • 2006-07-20 17:51 | ESSWE admin (Administrator)

    The first volume of the Aries Book Series has been published: Urszula Szulakowska, The Sacrificial Body and the Day of Doom: Alchemy and Apocalyptic Discourse in the Protestant Reformation. Leiden: Brill 2006 (119 EUR/ca. 155 USD). Members of ESSWE receive a discount on this publication (ca. 90 EUR/116 USD). This study positions Paracelsian alchemy, medicine and medical physiology within the apocalyptic discourse of the Protestant Reformation. A comparison is made between alchemical theory concerning the perfectibility of prime matter and Christian eschatological doctrine concerning human salvation through Christ's sacrifice in universal history and in the ritual of the mass. A detailed analysis is made of the engraved illustrations constituting an integral part of the alchemical medicine and physiology of Heinrich Khunrath, Stefan Michelspacher, Jacob Boehme, Abraham von Franckenberg and Robert Fludd. The book will be of interest to scholars of the history of western art, popular culture, medicine, alchemy and theology, specifically those working in the context of the late Renaissance and Reformation in the sixteenth and early seventeenth centuries. Urszula Szulakowska is a lecturer in art history at the University of Leeds. She has produced many publications on the history of alchemical illustration, including The Alchemy of Light (Brill, 2000)

  • 2006-07-03 17:51 | ESSWE admin (Administrator)

    The New York Open Center and Lapis Magazine Online host a conference titled: "An Esoteric Quest in Central Europe" from August 31 until September 8. The conference will be held at three differenct places in Central Europe, starting in the Czech Republic and moving to Weimar in Germany. The sessions include: "Jacob Boehme and His Theosophical Vision and The Hermetic Harvest of Goethe’s Alchemical Retreat, Nicholas Goodrick-Clarke "Oratory and Laboratory: Heinrich Khunrath’s Alchemy, Magic and Cabala", Peter Forshaw "Paracelsus/Goethe/Steiner", Dennis Klocek "Charting Rosicrucian Europe", Christopher McIntosh "Mystical Sisters: Images of the Alchemical Feminine", M.E. Warlick "The Esoteric Quest from Antiquity to the Renaissance", Leonard George "Ritual Illumination: The 'Higher' Masonic Orders, the Illuminati, and the Esoteric Quest", Jay Kinney

  • 2006-06-14 17:53 | ESSWE admin (Administrator)
    We are pleased to announce the inaugural conference of the ESSWE that will be held at the University of Tübingen (Germany), on 20-22 July 2007. The conference's overall topic is "Constructing Tradition: Means and Myths of Transmission in Western Esotericism". The deadline for submitting proposals is 31 December 2006. For a detailed description and the Call for Papers see the announcement under "Agenda".


  • 2006-05-31 17:54 | ESSWE admin (Administrator)
    Good news for long-distance users of the Bibliotheca Philosophica Hermetica (Ritman Library) Amsterdam: from today the catalogue of modern and pre-1800 printed books is online. The catalogue can be accessed via the ‘SEARCH CATALOGUE’ button on the library's website. The catalogue has a number of search options, including author, title, year, printers, but also names of former owners. A guide to the library is now available entitled Hermetically open which considerably enhances the transparency of the collection. The guide informs the reader about the subjects he can expect to find in the library and about the relationship between the various collecting areas (Available in English and in Dutch, € 5). A new exhibition is now showing under the same title showing more than 80 printed books and manuscripts. Visitors to the library will find a new information corner, with instructive panels, which also offers a power point presentation showing a selection of some 100 images focussing on the printed books and manuscripts before 1800.


  • 2006-03-25 17:57 | ESSWE admin (Administrator)
    On March 24, after fourteen days of being online, the Society has exactly 50 members! ESSWE members come from all over the world, from Australia to Ireland, from Canada to Russia, from Argentina to Finland, and from America to Egypt. At the moment they come from 18 different countries. We are delighted to have a good mixture of accomplished scholars and students among our members. The public response to the website is also encouraging indeed. The ESSWE site has already drawn visitors from a dozen countries all over the world, with an average of more than 100 visits and thousands of hits per day.


  • 2006-03-10 17:59 | ESSWE admin (Administrator)
    In March 2006, the dynamic website of ESSWE went online. We are still working hard to improve the site and to fix minor problems that have occurred. We appreciate your understanding!


  • 2002-03-20 18:01 | ESSWE admin (Administrator)
    The Center for “History of Hermetic Philosophy and Related Currents” (GHF) at the University of Amsterdam, Faculty of Humanities, is looking for An Assistant Professor (m/f) History of Western Esotericism in the Early Modern Period The Center for “History of Hermetic Philosophy and Related Currents” (Geschiedenis van de Hermetische Filosofie en verwante stromingen; GHF) at the University of Amsterdam (www.amsterdamhermetica.nl) is a pioneering institution for research and teaching in the academic study of Western Esotericism. It concentrates in particular on the history of Renaissance Platonism and Hermetism, prisca theologia and occulta philosophia in the early modern period and their later developments; alchemical, magical, astrological, Paracelsian and Rosicrucian currents; Jewish and Christian kabbalah; Christian theosophy and Illuminism; and various occultist and related developments during the 19th and 20th centuries, including the New Age movement. GHF has currently a vacancy for the position of Assistant Professor (“Universitair Docent”) for the History of Western Esotericism in the Early Modern Period. A successful candidate will have a good record of high quality academic publications focused on one or more currents in this domain, and solid general knowledge of the domain as a whole. As a generalist in the study of Western Esotericism in the Early Modern Period s/he can teach all its main aspects on both undergraduate and graduate levels. - Research. The Assistant Professor will be expected to initiate personal research projects in the field of esoteric currents in Western culture since the Renaissance, focusing on the early modern period (15th-18th cent.), and to publish actively in the appropriate scholarly media. S/he will also be expected to collaborate in common research activities with the other staff members of the subdepartment, and with staff members of other departements of the Faculty if the occasion calls for it. - Teaching. GHF offers a “minor” Western esotericism in the context of the Bachelor program Religious Studies (in Dutch), and a full-time trajectory “Mysticism and Western Esotericism” in the context of the Master program Religious Studies (in English). The Assistant Professor will be expected to teach courses in both programs, both in lecture and in seminar settings. If necessary, s/he is expected to master the Dutch language during the first two years of the appointment. - Organization/Administration. Within reasonable limits the Assistant Professor may be asked to be active in one or more special committees of the Faculty. Candidates should fit the following profile: Ph.D. (or equivalent) in a discipline of the humanities. Specialization in, or relevant to, one or more areas of historical research belonging to the domain of “Western esotericism” in the early modern period (15th-18th century), having resulted in academic publications of high quality. Active interest in interdisciplinary research and teamwork in the context of the humanities and the social sciences. Good didactic qualities. Good command of Latin and English non-native Dutch speakers must achieve fluency in Dutch within two years. Willingness to develop in a multidisciplinary capacity in order to be able to participate in multiple areas of the Faculty's curriculum. Appointment This is a temporary appointment for two years, starting on 1 September 2009. Satisfactory performance is subject for a permanent appointment. The gross monthly salary will range from € 3195 (scale 11) to € 4970 (scale 12), based on a full-time appointment (38 hours a week). Letters of application, with C.V. and list of publications, should be sent to: Prof. Dr. W.J. Hanegraaff, Fac. Of Humanities/Department of Art, Religion and Cultural Studies, Oude Turfmarkt 147, NL-1012 GC Amsterdam, The Netherlands. e-mail:  For general information, contact Mrs. H. Nobach (secretary) at the same address. Email  Deadline for letters of application: 23 March 2009.


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