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Leeds Theosophical Society
Promoting understanding and respect for spiritual lifestyles in the Leeds Area
Founded Sept. 1900
12 Queen Square, Leeds LS2 8AJ
(Near the Merrion Centre)

( Click here to see a map.)
President: Dr Paul Barker
A branch of The Theosophical Society in England.
Registered Charity No. 1167737.


Email: info@ts-leeds.org.uk      [Facebook Logo]
Susan Leybourne
[Susan Leybourne]
Sunday 15th December 2019 - 2:30 pm
Free Public Lecture followed by Seasonal Refreshments
Susan Leybourne (Northampton)

The traditional story of the birth of Jesus Christ on the 25th December in the Christian calendar has a long and important history which was not part of the original New Testament story.   As we approach our Mid-Winter celebrations from whatever tradition, it can be seen that this is an important time of year - a time for hope, renewal, regeneration, and the returning light of the Sun's power. In this talk we will explore some elements of the Christmas story, its background and the origins of some of our most well-loved traditions that are culled from the pagan festivals of the ancient world.

Susan Leybourne is a past President of Leeds Theosophical Society. She has a background in ancient religions, ancient Greek philosophy, mystical experience in world traditions and comparative religion. She has worked internationally as a Clairvoyant, Medium and Healer in the UAE, Malaysia, USA, North Africa, West Africa and most of Europe. Susan has taught workshops and courses in UK, USA, Sweden, France, Spain, Holland and Norway and lectured widely at international Spiritual conferences and conventions in UK, Holland, Sweden, Germany, Denmark and Norway. She has been featured many times in the Media in the UK and abroad, including TV, Radio and national press and has been featured in TV programmes in Germany, Switzerland, Japan and Canada. Susan has also assisted academic researchers in PhD studies into Mediumship, Psychic abilities and consciousness.
Details: www.susanleybourne.com

The Roots of Wisdom
a Two-day Conference
Saturday 25th and Sunday 26th April 2020
£50 for both days; £30 for a single day
Concessions are available. Places are strictly limited so booking is essential. To book, log-in to Paypal.com and navigate to the Leeds Theosophical Society account by entering the email: info@ts-leeds.org.uk
Please confirm the number of places you are booking.

MAGIC AND ALCHEMY: The Secrets Revealed

Speakers: Tim Wyatt (Leeds); Dr Edi Bilimoria ( Surrey); Ted Capstick (Chester);
Ifigeneia Kastamoniti (Athens); Susan Leybourne (Northampton); Janet Lee (London); and John Chacksfield (Kent)
Download a PDF Version of the Programme
Ifigeneia Kastamoniti is the long-standing National Secretary of the Greek Section of the Theosophical Society and one of the principal organisers of the European School of Theosophy. An International Lecturer, she has held numerous positions in the theosophical lodges of Athens for more than twenty years. She is a former editor of Ipsos magazine and has translated more than ten major Theosophical classics from English into Greek. She has travelled extensively throughout a long career and has made a special study of sacred sites around the world. She lives in Athens.

Ted Capstick is an innovative and pioneering figure in the emerging science of esoteric astrology – an astrology of the soul rather than the personality. A former finance director in the National Health Service, he has devoted many years to exploring how these techniques can yield practical knowledge. He has conducted many thousands of readings and lectures extensively on astrology and other theosophical themes throughout the country. He lives near Chester.

Dr Edi Bilimoria DPhil, FIMechE, FRSA. Edi is a writer, lecturer, educationalist and engineer. Born in India and educated at Imperial College and the universities of Sussex and Oxford, he is Board Director and Treasurer of the Scientific and Medical Network, which awarded him a prize for his book ‘The Snake and the Rope’. A student of the perennial philosophy for half a century, Edi has given courses, lectured extensively in the UK and internationally. As an award-winning consultant to the petrochemical, oil and gas, aerospace, transport, and construction industries, Edi has been project manager and head of design for major innovative projects like the Channel Tunnel and the Queen Elizabeth aircraft carrier. Edi is also a pianist of concert standard having studied at the Trinity College of Music. He lives in Surrey.

John Chacksfield is a health professional and has worked in adult mental health services for most of his career. He has been a student of the Western Mysteries since the age of twelve when he bought his first pack of tarot cards. He has studied various aspects of the mysteries and eventually joined a contemporary Golden Dawn order. He has lectured on the MA course in Myth, Cosmology and the Sacred at Canterbury Christchurch University, on Kabbalah and other mystical practices and remains a guest lecturer on the MA course. He is a strong believer in the importance of ritual in society and that when it is missing it can cause societal problems. He lives in Rochester, Kent.

Janet Lee has MAs in both the History of Art and Design and in Psychotherapy and Healing Practice, centring her studies in both on spiritual transformation. She practices as a psychotherapist and clinical hypnotist, after a career as a senior broadcasting executive. She is a former National Secretary of the Theosophical Society in England and is now a TS member attached directly to the International TS in Adyar, India. She enjoys wonder and has travelled intrepidly. She lives in London.

Susan Leybourne is a PhD candidate at the University of Wales, Trinity Saint David, working on late antique theurgical texts and ascent mysticism. She has an MA in Ancient Religions from the university’s School of Classics. She is a former President of the Leeds Lodge of the Theosophical Society and a current National Councillor of the Theosophical Society in England. She has lectured widely in the UK and overseas, and been featured many times in the UK and International media. Some of her interests include Greco-Roman and Egyptian religion, mystery cults, oracular practices and prophecy in the ancient world, Jewish apocalyptic mysticism and traditional Kabbalah. She currently lives in Northampton.
Details: www.susanleybourne.com

Saturday 25th April
9.00-9.45am: Arrivals
9.45-10.15am: Welcome and overview of Magic - Tim Wyatt
10.15-11.15am The Sacred Dance and Its Ritual - Ifigeneia Kastamoniti
Sacred dance is to be found in every tradition, every religion and every culture from remote antiquity up to contemporary times. What has been its purpose, its significance and its ritual? Why has it played such an important role in mythology and history? How does it function today? This talk is an adventure down the ages exploring the magic and mysteries of sacred dance.
11.15-11.45am Break (refreshments available)
11.45-12.45pm White Magic and Focusing on the Greater Good - Ted Capstick
What is white magic but the spiritualisation of matter? As we proceed down our individual roads of development towards higher initiation we ultimately receive flashes of insight and inspiration of how to achieve this. In the emerging Age of Aquarius this process will be strengthened by the vibrant incoming energy of the Seventh Ray of Ceremonial Order and Magic.
12.45-2.00pm Lunch (not included)
2.00-3.00pm Isaac Newton and Srinivasa Ramanujan: Mathematical Souls in Spiritual Resonance - Dr Edi Bilimoria
This lecture traces the common elements in the very different personal lives of Isaac Newton and Srinivasa Ramanujan outlining their individual trajectories. It shows how the occult sciences can illuminate and enlarge our field of enquiry and deepen our understanding into how and why such phenomena occur. It elucidates how geniuses attain insight by direct contact with the unknown sources that surround them.
3.00-3.30pm Break (refreshments available)
3.30-4.30pm Ceremonial Magic in the Western Mystery Tradition - John Chacksfield
What is Magic? What is ritual? What is ceremonial magic? Why do we use rituals? This talk will explore the background and basics of ceremonial ritual magic in the context of the Western Mystery Tradition and specifically in the esoteric order of the Golden Dawn. It will examine its ancient roots, its role in the Victorian era and its use today, outlining the four steps essential for conducting rituals.
4.30-5.00pm Discussion.
Sunday 26th April
9.00-9.45am Arrivals
9.45-10.15am Welcome and overview of Alchemy - Tim Wyatt
10.15-11.15am Alchemy and the Evolution of the Mysteries - Ted Capstick
The popular notion is that alchemy is about transmuting base metals into gold. But it is far more than that. It is a spiritual science of self-transformation. This talk explores the nature of the alchemical quest and the mysteries of metals. It shows how alchemy is linked to accelerating the development of consciousness and can lead us to our spiritual goal.
11.15-11.45am Break (refreshments available)
11.45-12.45pm Magic and Alchemy in Art and in the Psychotherapeutic Work of C G Jung - Janet Lee
Magic and alchemy have inspired and intrigued artists and esotericists since the dawn of time. Both are often perceived as exoteric practices but Theosophists know that both depend on the quality of our inner lives for their success. Art and spiritual work show the way. This illustrated talk examines the symbolism of both traditions and what it can teach us about initiation, the Mysteries and our own spiritual transformation.
12.45-2.00pm Lunch (not included)
2.00-3.00pm The Hermetic Axiom – Dr Edi Bilimoria
This talk explores the how ‘analogy’, ‘correspondence’ and ‘correlation’ lie at the very heart of the alchemical and magical tradition. It will show how these ideas are discernible in all life and existence. It will explore the relations between human principles and corresponding cosmic principles; between human principles and physical nature (the chemical elements); and between human principles and states of matter as well as colours and sounds.
3.00-3.30pm Break (refreshments available)
3.30-4.30pm Inner Al-kemi: The Science of Godhood - Susan Leybourne.
This lecture will examine the theory and practice of spiritual alchemy towards personal deification or angelification in late antiquity, exploring complementary teachings in Neoplatonic, Gnostic and Jewish mystical sources. These reveal techniques for self-transformation and clear instructions for unfolding one’s god-nature. What can be learned from these ancient sources? How might they practically assist us in our quest for soul- immortality?
4.30-5.00pm Final thoughts.

Gary Lachman
[Gary Lachman]
Gary Lachman (London)

The Hermetica are Egyptian-Greek wisdom texts from the 2nd century ACE and later, which are mostly presented as dialogues in which a teacher, generally identified as Hermes Trismegistus ("thrice-greatest Hermes"), enlightens a disciple. The texts form the basis of Hermeticism. They discuss the divine, the cosmos, mind, and nature. Some touch upon alchemy, astrology, and related concepts.

The term particularly applies to the Corpus Hermeticum, Marsilio Ficino's Latin translation in fourteen tracts, of which eight early printed editions appeared before 1500 and a further twenty-two by 1641. This collection, which includes Poimandres and some addresses of Hermes to disciples Tat, Ammon and Asclepius, was said to have originated in the school of Ammonius Saccas and to have passed through the keeping of Michael Psellus: it is preserved in fourteenth century manuscripts. The last three tracts in modern editions were translated independently from another manuscript by Ficino's contemporary Lodovico Lazzarelli (1447–1500) and first printed in 1507. Extensive quotes of similar material are found in classical authors such as Joannes Stobaeus.

Parts of the Hermetica appeared in the 4th-century Gnostic library found in Nag Hammadi. Other works in Syriac, Arabic, Coptic and other languages may also be termed Hermetica — another famous tract is the Emerald Tablet, which teaches the doctrine "as above, so below".

All these are themselves remnants of a more extensive literature, part of the syncretic, intellectualized paganism of their era, a cultural movement that also included the Neoplatonic philosophy of the Greco-Roman mysteries and late Orphic and Pythagorean literature and influenced Gnostic forms of the Abrahamic religions.

Extracts from Wikipedia.

Gary Lachman (1955 - ) was born in Bayonne, New Jersey, but has lived in London, England since 1996. A founding member of the rock group Blondie, he is now a full time writer with more than a dozen books to his name, on topics ranging from the evolution of consciousness and the western esoteric tradition, to literature and suicide, and the history of popular culture. Lachman writes frequently for many journals in the US and UK, and lectures on his work in the US, UK, and Europe. His work has been translated into several languages. His website is: www.garylachman.co.uk

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