What is the Feldenkrais Method? Who is Feldenkrais? – Jill Taylor and Litzi Lemberg
Taking responsibility for oneself is very much reflected in the Feldenkrais Method of body awareness and movement. With the idea of the plasticity of the brain, two of Moshe's favourite sayings:
'How to make the impossible possible the possible easy and the easy elegant' 'Take the braces off your brains'
1. An introduction. 2. You’ll experience a lesson in sitting followed by a discussion. 3. Please leave jeans and belts at home.
Jill and Litzi were both trained as Physiotherapists at Sydney University in conventional movement methods. They both changed their way of thinking when they discovered the Feldenkrais Method of body awareness and movement. Come and discover why!
Wednesday 11th – 1:00pm
“Signalling Through the Flames”: Testing the limits of Ritual and the Sacred at MONA’s Dark Mofo Festival – Alana Louise Bowden
The Dark Mofo, a winter solstice festival, draws upon a variety of religious and spiritual traditions which “celebrate the darkness,” honouring cycles of life, death, and rebirth by weaving together various mythologies, folklores, rituals and magical practices in art and performance practice. As the festival’s creative director, Lee Carmichael describes it: “We will celebrate links between ancient and contemporary mythology, humans and nature, religious and secular traditions, darkness and light, birth and death, fire, destruction and renewal.”
Drawing upon her research in Theatre and Performance Studies, and Studies in Religion, Bowden will use the case study of the Dark Mofo to explore the relationship between contemporary performance and spiritual ritual, asking: Can secular arts practice be understood on sacred terms?
Alana Louise Bowden is an interdisciplinary artist and academic based in Sydney. Working across Theatre and Performance Studies, and Studies in Religion, her research and artistic practice focuses on theatre, film and live performance, interested particularly in the intersection between performance, gender, art, and magic through embodied and collaborative experience. Her academic interests are focused on cultural and creative practice and include areas such as Western Esotericism, Ancient and Modern Paganism(s), Witchcraft, New Religious Movements, Feminism and Performance Art.
She has worked creatively throughout Australia and Europe with companies including The Royal Shakespeare Company, The International Melbourne Comedy Festival, Sydney Fringe Festival and Cooltour Contemporary Arts Centre, Czech Republic. She currently works as a Research Assistant in the Department of Studies in Religion at the University of Sydney, Australia.
Saturday 14th – 2:00pm
Members’ Circle – All members welcome
Wellbeing - Living Harmoniously and Giving Wholeheartedly – Gerard Brennan
This talk will examine notions of what really constitutes Wellbeing in our society today and explore finding real balance in life leading to greater fulfilment. Finding that sense of wellness within ourselves amidst the contrasts of life can be very healing, allowing us to experience deeper levels of peace. Giving this back to the world around us quite naturally is an extension of that harmony which flows from the wellspring of the One Life. There will be some discussion, readings and time for quiet reflection.
Wednesday 18th – 1:00pm
Consciousness and The Power of Thought – Nila Chambers
We swim in an ocean of thought and generate more thoughts than any other commodity, yet we rarely reflect on the power of the mind and the effect of thoughts. In this talk we explore the nature and power of thought and its relationship with consciousness, drawing on examples from the life of Parmahansa Yogananda and NDEs.
Nila Chambers is a retired school principal and university and TAFE lecturer. She was involved in Rudolf Steiner education for some years. She is the author of ‘The Gift of Intuition: guidance on a healing journey.’ Nowadays she is a facilitator of groups, workshops and retreats. Nila has a master’s degree in comparative religion, an honours degree in psychology and various teaching qualifications. She currently facilitates the Sydney Northern Beaches Theosophical Society Group, Sydney IANDS (International Association for Near Death Studies) and Sydney White Eagle Intuition Development Circle. She is a life- long meditator and seeker of spiritual truth.
Wednesday 25th – 1:00pm
Plato: His Legacy and Influence – Michael Svoronos
Plato (c427-347) was “An Initiate into the Mysteries and the greatest Greek philosopher whose writings are known the world over. He was a pupil of Socrates and the teacher of Aristotle”. (Source: The Theosophical Glossary by H. P. Blavatsky. 1892). Plato believed that the ills of society could not be solved by way of political means. Instead, philosophy provided the answer if philosophers became rulers or rulers’ philosophers. He wrote extensively and one of his best-known works “The Republic” includes Plato’s vision of the ideal state. The society he envisaged was to be governed by guardians trained in moral philosophy. “Timaeus and Critias” is often sighted in Theosophical literature and gives a detailed account of the world that we live in and contains a description of the lost continent of Atlantis. His theory of the Forms refers to an ideal world where true reality exists. If we can see the ideal, it will improve our understanding of the world around us. Plato created a school called the Academy. It was devoted to philosophical research and teaching that lasted for many generations. The teaching model in the Academy has been used by Western Universities.
Michael Svoronos is a retired bank employee with an interest in the fifth century before Christ Greek Classical era, a time of extraordinary achievement and inspiration. He has knowledge of the Greek language that helped him understand Plato’s terms and finds enhanced significance in Platonisism in the course of his Theosophical studies.
September 2021 Program
Wednesday 1st – 1:00pm
Awakening Now – Peter Thompson
Practical hints and suggestions for putting the great teachings of awakening into practice. (Zen, Advaita, Krishnamurti)
Peter Thompson has studied with many famous spiritual teachers in India, USA, Japan and Australia, first influenced and guided by J. Krishnamurti and Vimala Thakar. He first sat Zen Meditation in 1975 as a founding member of Sydney Zen Centre and has been greatly inspired by the Advaita Vedanta path. He has a deep commitment to helping to address major modern issues such as climate change and eco-sustainability, to realign spirituality with the natural world, thus recently initiating the Dharma Gaia Fellowship and AFCAN (Artists for Climate Action Now).
Peter holds an Arts Degree from ANU, majoring in Political Science (Hons) and Law, a Research Masters’ Degree in Community Counselling (UCAN) and a Diploma of Education. He taught high school for 24 years and is also a qualified professional tennis coach.
Saturday 4th September – Celia Novy Memorial Day 11:00am – 4:00pm
Registration is essential. Preference will be given to those registered for the original date. However, they will need to re-register.
Wednesday 8th – 1:00pm
Theosophy and early 20th Century Australian Art – Stephanie Claire
This talk will discuss the far-reaching impact of Theosophical thought on the development and direction of western art during the first decades of the 20th century. The influence of Theosophy on a generation of painters is now far more widely understood and credited. Artists such as Kandinsky and Paul Klee, Grace Cossington Smith, Clarice Beckett and Roy de Mestre found their instinctive approaches to life validated and expanded through reading about Theosophy and meeting and painting with other ‘theosophically-minded’ practitioners.
The talk will include visuals of the above artists’ work and describe the vibrant social contexts in which they lived and made their art during a time that included two World Wars a world-wide Depression and a number of other far-reaching social changes.
Stephanie Claire is an educationist with a strong interest in art. Her ‘historical’ association with theosophy led to the writing of Towards a Better World (pub.2019), set in the heady days of 1920s Sydney and viewed through the eyes of a group of young Theosophists.
Saturday 11th – 2:00pm
Members’ Circle – All members welcome - The Divine Wisdom in Literature and Film – Gerard Brennan
In this Members' Circle we will examine the presence of the Ancient Wisdom in great literature and film from around the world, exploring extracts from some great plays and novels of the 20th century, along with some contemporary films that have embodied aspects of this ancient wisdom in their own unique way.
So perhaps spend a bit of time revisiting your knowledge of Shakespeare and considering the enduring legacy of Star Wars. What do they have in common? Does the Harry Potter series have a deeper significance than you think? Please come along and join us in our study of some great texts that have taken their inspiration from the wellspring of Divine Wisdom.
Wednesday 15th – 1:00pm
Introduction to a History of Western Alchemy from about the Third to the Eighteenth Century – Cindy Eric
This is a short introduction to the history of changing ideas in western European alchemy, from about the third century of early Greek alchemy to the eighteenth, in England. The focus is on alchemical metaphysics, which we'll examine with images as well as texts to reveal how the alchemical oratory and laboratory are interwoven according to various alchemists during this long swathe of time.
Cindy Eric is a historian of science by day, and a digital multimedia artist by night.
Wednesday 22nd – 1:00pm
The Problem with Peace – Pamela Peterson
What is this elusive phenomenon called ‘Peace’? Is it an impossible Utopian dream? Are we looking in the wrong places? Are any real efforts being made to achieve it? How high is it on our list of priorities?
Pamela Peterson, former secondary school teacher, chronic questioner and seeker of answers, is the secretary of the Blavatsky Lodge Executive Committee.
Wednesday 29th – 1:00pm
Stories of Theosophical Living
A video presentation by Barbara Herbert, TS President in America, and Erica Georgiades
Suggested donation for Wednesday afternoon talks: $5.00
For members and those interested in these subjects The Theosophical Society upholds the right of liberty of thought and expression thereof.
The views and opinions expressed by speakers do not necessarily reflect the views or position of the Theosophical Society.
The Blavatsky Lodge of the Theosophical Society
Suite 8, 599 Pacific Highway, St Leonards / PO Box 319, St Leonards 1590
Every Wednesday: 10:00am–11:00am – “Sharing Spiritual Awareness”
Study Group, currently reading ‘The Pilgrim on the Path’, by John Algeo.
Co-ordinated by Rosanna Sheridan.
Every Wednesday: 11:10am–12:10pm – “The Mahatma Letters”
The Mahatma Letters are a large series of correspondence between A.P. Sinnett and H.P. Blavatsky's Teachers, though some letters were sent to other T.S. members. The Letters contain much of the main core of Theosophical Teachings. The original Letters are now in the British Museum.
Facilitator: Simon O’Rourke
Every Wednesday: 3:00pm – 3:30pm – Meditation with Lucille Crocker
Thursdays 10:30am – 11:45am, beginning 5th August, running for six weeks – The Feline Mystery
Week One: The Mystery and the History. Cats from antiquity to now.
Week Two: The Body and the Brain. Flexibility and inscrutability.
Week Three: Wild and dangerous. Big cats, and small cats’ impact on our environment.
Week Four: Cats on culture. Books, comics and advertising.
Week Five: Filling the gap. Cats as friends, companions in a challenging world.
Week Six: Spooky cats. The sixth sense and cosmic consciousness of cats in our lives.
The course will aim to focus on personal experience and observation. There will be no set book or audio-visual presentation. By sharing our feelings, as well as facts, history and philosophy surrounding the feline family we should hopefully uncover if not necessarily solve the mystery that is The Cat.
Facilitator: Keith Howes
Keith Howes is a TS member, long enthralled by the ‘magic light’ of cinema. He is currently involved in creating a ‘theosophical history of world cinema, which he first mooted at Blavatsky Lodge in 2006.
The TOS Open Circle Presents:
Saturday 28 August 2021 at 2.00pm
Presented by Kathie Herbert of the Blue Mountains Refugee Support Group
Their vision is of an openhearted Australia where people seeking refuge and asylum are treated with justice and compassion.
Kathie is currently the Vice Chairperson of BMRSP.
All donations to BMRSG
Saturday 25 September 2021 at 2:00pm
“Connecting to Country”
Presented by Arjuna Ben-Zion Weiss (PhD)
Ben is a community educator in social ecology, meditation, yoga, cross-cultural conflict and mentor of Dances of Universal Peace. Latest book Integral Spirituality, Essays in Social Ecology and Integral Consciousness. Ben attended a training of Ambassadors to Country with Uncle Noel Butler and will share his experience
All donations to Hope Orphanage India
All events are held at Suite 8, 599 Pacific Highway, St. Leonards 2065 (entrance via Albany Street). Enquiries: Tel 02 9267 6955, or www.australia.theoservice.org/sydney.