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Understanding Our Moment in History: An Archetypal Perspective

April 21, 2012 @ 10:00 am - 3:00 pm PDT


This will be a deeper examination of the ideas raised in the Friday night lecture:

Our time is pervaded by a great paradox. On the one hand, we see signs of an unprecedented level of engaged global awareness, moral sensitivity to the human and non-human community, psychological self-awareness, and spiritually informed philosophical pluralism. On the other hand, we confront the most critical, and in some respects catastrophic, state of the Earth in human history. Both these conditions have emerged directly from the modern age, whose light and shadow consequences now affect every part of the planet.

We seem to be living at the end of an era. The past and the future are converging in our time with extraordinary force. Old structures are cracking, the moment of creative chaos is upon us, and the drama of our age has become a great question: What new principles, what new structures—social, political, economic, ecological, psychological, spiritual—will emerge to shape our future? So much is at stake. We are facing a threshold of fundamental collective transformation that bears a striking resemblance to what takes place on the individual level in initiatory rites of passage, in near-death experiences, in spiritual crises, and in critical stages of what Jung called the individuation process. Can we find a place of equilibrium, an eye in the storm, from which we can engage this time of intense polarization and radical change? And in such an era of transition, what is the role of “heroic” communities like that of Jungian institutes and societies — or the Bioneers or Schumacher, CIIS or Pacifica, Esalen or Findhorn — which carry principles and perspectives that run counter to the mainstream modern world view?

To help us navigate this threshold of transformation, we need multiple perspectives and sources of insight. Join Richard Tarnas this weekend as he draws on depth psychology and archetypal astrology, philosophy, religion, and cultural history as we seek together a larger context for both understanding and action.

Related Lecture: Understanding Our Moment in History: An Archetypal Perspective

Richard Tarnas, Ph.D., is a professor of psychology and cultural history at the California Institute of Integral Studies, where he founded the graduate program in Philosophy, Cosmology, and Consciousness. He is the author of The Passion of the Western Mind, a history of the Western world view from the ancient Greek to the postmodern widely used in universities. His second book, Cosmos and Psyche: Intimations of a New World View, received the Book of the Year Prize from the Scientific and Medical Network, and is the basis for the upcoming documentary film Changing of the Gods.


April 21, 2012
10:00 am - 3:00 pm PDT
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First Unitarian Church Main Street Sanctuary
1211 SW Main St
Portland, OR 97205 United States
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