Mythology Of Modern Man: Male Alchemy (Level 2)
Join us to heal your relationship to maleness, through the esoteric arts of myth, alchemy, imagination and soma.
Image Credit: Il Matto, Estruscan Tarot, Solandia
This 11 week program engages experientially with curated key powerful myths that have impacted the way that we understand maleness and masculinity. This initiation that equips us is a unique process: It begins with the study of myths and sacred histories, both ancient and modern. Further, we engage the material actively through both profound work in the imaginal realms, practices of embodying the archetypes, and the elements of their stories. By engaging with our relationship to masculinity in these unique ways, we are able to do several things: First, we make conscious the historical and mythic processes that have been at work in our individual lives and society. Second, by working with the embodiment and imagining of these powerful lineages, we receive new insights. Finally, we participate in what the alchemists call the Great Work, in which we begin to use our learning and insights to plant seeds of gender healing in our environment. This is a journey of learning, discovery, reflection, and the sacred work of developing new medicines. It is a balm for much of the anger, frustration, and misunderstanding in our current gender debates.
Program: The Archetypal Journey
Each archetype we explore is a site of interlinked ancestral knowledge that will link us to other stories and other histories, as we clarify, through our own lives, the influence that these patterns have for people of all genders. These sessions are flexible, expansive, and flow with the group’s learning experience, based on the following structures. As we move through them, gathering insights, there is always fresh learning, often incorporating insights from the myths of other cultures and modern narratives, from the West, the East, the North and the South.
The Enlightener: Prometheus, September 23, 2023
In this section we explore Prometheus and associated figures who brought enlightenment to humanity. We also look at the shadow of the man who brings science, knowledge, advancement, and those who pursue evolution.
The Communicator/Entrepreneur: Hermes, September 30, 2023
Men who engage the mind, media and business are connected to the ancient figure of Hermes. We work here with how this rapid and expansive force informs the lives of men and people of other genders, in positive and negative directions. This particular archetype, generally depicted as male, is especially key to our contemporary world
The Trickster: Hypnos, October 7, 2023
Our lives are inevitably, thankfully, never free from the unexpected. The Trickster comes in many forms and is well known in traditional cultures. He also appears in the comedians of our modern world. Without his chaotic and destabilizing force, we would be stuck. Hypnos, the god of sleep, is one example, among others, that we will explore through mythos, for his ability to stop us in our tracks and to interrupt our plans.
The Warrior/Catalyst: Mars and Huo Yuanjia, October 14th and October 21, 2023
The warrior is a catalyst whose shadow we work with extensively in this class, to allow new futures to open up, taking this raw energy and directing it in freshly emergent ways. In its raw form, war causes some of the planet’s worst trauma and gender violence. In the spirit of Mars as an evolving archetype, great martial artists have worked skillfully to channel this raw strength for the good. We will explore the roots of modern martial wisdom, in the reforms of Huo Yuanjia, which led eventually to Bruce Lee’s fame in the 20th century.
The Hero: Hercules, October 28, 2023
Hercules is often associated with brute masculine strength and is famous for his capacity to overcome obstacles, underlining the element of male psychology and spirituality which has an affinity for transformation through rites of passage and challenges. Other elements of spiritual and psychological development for men that are often shadowed in Hercules’ life, such as his time spent in reflection, interiority, and the exploration of his femininity and sexuality. We will reintegrate these aspects.
The Transformed Warrior: KIng Arthur and the Javanmardi (Fattah) November 4, 2023
The development of chivalry is a key step in the evolution of maleness, from its most raw to refined states. Around the world, chivalrous archetypes of refined warriors and gentlemen have emerged, including the ideal of the Javanmard in the Islamic and Persianate world. King Arthur and his knights appear alongside a tradition exalting the feminine in Europe during its experience of Islamic conquest.
The Healer: Aesclepius, November 18, 2023
One of the forms of masculine wisdom that is the most nurturing and service-oriented, is that of the Healer or Physician, something often overlooked in exaltation of other, more aggressive forms of the masculine. Aesclepius represents applied knowledge of both the physical body and inner wisdom. His temples represent centers of this knowledge and practical laboratories for practices such as working with the imaginal and dream incubation. We will re-weave into our understanding of the masculine, the role of healing and repairing male capacities.
The Lover: Faust, Don Juan, November 25, 2023
Don Juan has become emblematic of womanizing and Faust with unethical pursuit of power, in modern speech. Both, in different ways, represent an attempt to own the feminine, with different psychologies and hard learning processes. We will explore these two paths, by which Don Juan seeks the Feminine through many women, and Faust seeks a multiplicity of women in the one representation of the Feminine. Here we will explore the ways that men approach desire and need.
The Peaceful Warrior/The Activist: Nelson Mandela December 2, 2023
At its most alchemized, one of the aspects of masculine strength can manifest in the world through right action. At this stage we will particularly focus on an African luminary in the establishment of social justice, Nelson Mandela, known affectionately as Madiba by many in South Africa. Alongside figures like Martin Luther King, Mahatma Gandhi, and Malcom X, Mandela out-pictured a form of enlightened manhood, with all of the ordinary human frailties and mistakes, and engagement in the world. We will encounter this force through our various tools, seeking an inner and outer implementation of its wisdom.
Conclusion December 9, 2023
As we conclude this set of sessions, we review and connect with the essence of our experience, as a part of the Great Work of repair and transformation on our planet, and offer it up, ceremonially.
Please watch and/or listen to our presentation of the program:
In part one of the Mythology of Modern Man, we studied male shadow (the womanizer, the tyrant, the abusive father, among others), in this section, Part Two, we are focusing on the male archetype in transformation from brokenness to wholeness. In part three, we will explore the application of this wisdom in community and ecosphere. Each section can function as a stand-alone experience. Our gatherings are held weekly, on the weekend, and each class includes all elements: the learning of stories and histories, interaction around personal experiences with masculinity/maleness, plus embodied and imaginal practices to fully internalize each archetype using both traditional esoteric approaches and emergent, new methods. Participation is open to anyone of any identity wanting to understand their relationship to maleness, and is a space of both inner and collective transformation, held within the same container.
Dr. Logan Sparks, Nicolas Lecerf