Practical Philosophy Australia and its affliated schools around Australia organise various events for the enjoyment of students and the general public. This page lists upcoming offerings that complement the School’s Philosophy courses and bring practical philosophy to everyday living.
THE GOLDEN THREAD
9 - 10 January 2021
Imagine a golden thread that leads back to the source of existence, to the consciousness that impels every aspect of the physical, mental and spiritual worlds in which we live. A thread which weaves through every aspect of life and which, if grasped, can carry us back to that source while helping us to make sense of the journey along the way.
Enjoy a weekend in the Summer in good company, when we will follow the thread in a variety of ways with the guidance of session leaders who have experience and a love of their chosen subject. The weekend will comprise three workshops each day, with a plenary session at the beginning and end of the event. Choose up to 6 workshops from a total offering of 24.
On Saturday evening we will enjoy a series of three ‘mini’ lectures entitled ‘Proportion, Aesthetics and Beauty in Watch, Clock and Sundial Design’. The lecture was first delivered to the Worshipful Company of Clockmakers in October by Lady Joanna White, John Martineau and Lee-Yuen Rapati – all eminent in the fields of art, design and horology.
January 9th – 10th 2021
8.00am Saturday – 4.00pm Sunday
(Includes Saturday evening presentation)
8.00 – 8.30am: Opening Plenary Session
8.30 – 10.00am: Session 1
10.00 – 10.30am: Tea break
10:30 – 12.00pm: Session 2
12.00 – 1.30pm: Lunch
1.30 – 3.00pm: Session 3
3.00 – 7.30pm: Free time
7.30 – 9.00pm: Special Presentation
8.30 – 10.00am: Session 4
10.00 – 10.30am: Tea break
10:30 – 12.00pm: Session 5
12.00 – 1.30pm: Lunch
1.30 – 3.00pm: Session 6
3.00 – 3.15am: Short break
3.15 – 4.00pm: Closing Plenary Session
The above times are listed in Eastern Daylight Time (EDT). Please note:
- QLD commences 1hr earlier.
- NT commences 1.5hrs earlier.
- SA commence 30mins earlier.
- WA commences 3hrs earlier.
$60 inc gst.
This entitles entry to a selection of up to six workshops, two plenary meetings and the guest presentation on Saturday evening.
Online via Zoom. Meeting addresses will be supplied on registration.
Download the pdf or view the workshops below. Please make your selections on the registration page (1 per session).
1A: THE ANCIENT WISDOM OF THE WESTERN TRADITION
MRS HELEN NICHOL
We are familiar with the teaching of unity in Advaita. Discover where the same unity reveals itself in the West and which our sages call the ‘Golden Chain’. It is found in Homer, developed in Plato, mirrored in the Hebrew Magi, and continued through Plotinus, Dionysius, Ficino and many more. We will look at three for starters. This is our lineage. Do we know it? If not, why would it survive?
1B: EXPLORING THE SACRED IN ART AND ARCHITECTURE
MR GARRY MARTIN
A contemplative workshop involving the observation from stillness of certain created works of art and architecture. In that stillness, the order, harmony and beauty of the Sacred may be revealed. Certain works, consciously created, emulate the Divine order of the creation and lead us back to the source of All. We shall explore together works from the Hindu, Buddhist, Christian and Islamic traditions in a journey to discover for ourselves the Unity that underlies the All.
1C: GAYATRI MANTRA
MR ROBERT UDOVICICH
The Hymn to the Sun - or Gayatri Mantra – is the oldest and most auspicious of mantras from the eastern tradition and one which has also profoundly influenced the West. When sounded sincerely, it erases the ordinary negative tendencies of the mind and awakens the vital energies which lead to liberation, health and happiness. An introduction to the history, science and health benefits of the mantra; including group sounding for a practical exploration of its effects on body, mind and emotions.
2A: ACCESSING THE POWER OF SILENCE, A JOURNEY TO THE HEART
MS MARY KENNEDY
In a world of ever-competing, cacophonous volume, both external and internal, it seems as though we are afraid of silence, that we would do just about anything rather than sit in that quiet inner space. Yet if the number of books and courses written about it are anything to go on, we are drawn to and inherently feel the need for silence. What then is the value of silence, and how may we find access to it?
2C: MAKING RESOLUTIONS THAT STICK
MR SAM GRACE
Resolutions can be very slippery - especially ones that are made at the commencement of the New Year. Yet it feels like the natural time to make such commitments. Despite our best intentions, when we do not meet our own expectations it can be a deflating experience. What can the wisdom traditions teach us about resolution? This workshop offers a forum for you to share your experience, or to simply soak up the information and quietly reflect on how it might apply to your life.
2D: THE SOWER WENT FORTH TO SOW
MR JOHN JEPSEN
Throughout the millenia, the great teachers of humankind have gone forth to sow the seeds of truth embedded in the great teachings into the ‘soil’ of the human heart. Some bear fruit; some do not. It has been ever so. Let us follow the thread of some of these mighty sowers from beyond ancient memory up to the present day.
3A: THE BODY SPEAKS
MRS BOUTHAINA MAYALL
Using an ancient Upanishadic text, the Chandogya Upanishad, we shall explore how the body itself reveals universal truths and leads to Self knowledge. This is a workshop for those who would like to explore authentic movement, that is to trust the body to speak through its own movement. We shall also learn the traditional hand mudras which are used to illustrate the story in the text as our starting point.
3B: THE GREATEST IGNORANCE
MRS JANE PRAEGER
Plato’s Laws can teach us what is required to create a perfect city and what will bring it down and destroy it. What in ourselves brings a state of wisdom and what are the clouds that bend our will and create torment?
3C: TAMING YOUR AMYGDALA
MR ROBERT UDOVICICH
Fearlessness - the first of the divine qualities in the Bhagavad Gita. According to Plato fear and anger are tyrannical obstacles to a full and reasonable life. Learn to tame your dragon - or the dragon of someone close to you. Practical philosophical approaches to reduce anxiety, panic attacks and other manifestations of fear.
3D: THE WISDOM OF JESUS – A GOLDEN THREAD LEADING TO SELF REALISATION?
MRS MARITA BREWSTER
The Christian mystics understood that in transcending the material world it is possible to find unity with the divine. We will examine some key statements spoken by Jesus that point to that divinity within our own souls. We will also look to the mystics to discover what they practised to help access the wisdom of Jesus. Could this be the time to return to the purity of the conscious words spoken by Jesus himself – spoken directly to the minds of hearts of all people in the centuries to follow?
4C: LET NO MAN ENTER WHO IS IGNORANT OF GEOMETRY
MR REGINALD JOHNSTON
Have you ever looked up at the sky at night, and wondered? Or looked at Mother Nature, and been amazed by Her symmetry? Sacred Geometry is at the heart of this universal array and indeed, of every aspect of the creation. We will examine the significance and beauty of Sacred Geometry and how it can be used for artistic expression. Suggested materials: a compass, pencil, ruler and paper. All instructions will be given. Or just come and listen. No prior knowledge or artistic skill required.
5B: Know Thyself
Mrs Marita Brewster
Know Thyself – these words were carved over the portal to the Temple at Delphi. The works of Plato are devoted to exploring this noble aspiration. We will examine what Plato called the ‘Forms’, the indestructible and eternal realities which transcend the material world perceived by the senses; and discover our relationship with them. Is to know the Forms a pathway to knowing ourselves?
5C: Mindfulness: more than stress management and efficiency?
Dr Craig Hassed OAM
Mindfulness is very popular these days and has a surprising amount of research behind it. Mostly, people see it as a technique in stress management or to help them to focus and be more efficient, but does it have greater potential than that? Can following the golden thread of mindfulness-based practices ultimately take us deeper into self-knowledge, wisdom and even liberation?
6A: DEMOCRACY ON TRIAL
DR CRAIG HASSED OAM
These days most people in the western world revere democracy as the highest form of government but not everyone, notably Socrates, shares that opinion. Was Socrates right about democracy being the second lowest of the five forms of government, just one step from tyranny? On what basis would he make such an assertion? What is the governing principle in a democracy and is there something higher we should be governed by? Does modern neuroscience give us any clues as to whether or not Socrates was right? Can this inquiry provide a golden thread with the potential to lead us to wisdom, enlightenment and freedom?
6C: THE FORTUNES OF DIALECTIC
MR RAJ BHANDARI
The Golden Thread of Reason is what leads us back to the Truth of who we are. Want to know more about your Self? Want to discover deep and meaningful insights into the nature of Reality? Whatever it is you wish to enquire about, Dialectic may help to develop your capacity to explore and discover. Guidelines will be offered as well as time to practise with fellow participants.
Not offered at this time.
Not offered at this time.