Few people have the capacity to convey the wild and fascinating history of the occult and the characters who shaped this underground spiritual movement like Gary Lachman, a London-based scholar and former bassist for the band Blondie. His depth of knowledge on evolution, consciousness, and pop culture paired with his unique story telling ability, have made him a favorite contributor to EnlightenNext magazine, and his articles like 2013: Or What To Do When the Apocalypse Doesn’t Arrive, Mrs. Satan, and Mary Wollstonecraft and the Romantic Consciousness, have added an important occult dimension to our ongoing exploration of the evolutionary worldview.
This coming Saturday from 5:30-7:30 pm (London time), Lachman will be engaging in a live public dialogue with the Director of EnlightenNext Europe, Chris Parish, at our center in London. The title of the talk is “A Secret History of Consciousness,” based on the title of Lachman’s 2003 book, and they will be exploring the saga of consciousness: how consciousness and its evolution have been understood over time by esoteric thinkers, philosophers, and spiritual masters.
Thanks to the wonders of modern technology, the dialogue won’t just be accessible to those who happen to be in London this weekend. We’re going to be live streaming the event over the web. So if you have an internet connection, you’ll be able to tune in from anywhere in the world (mp3s of the talk will also be available to all registrants after the talk).
To give you taste of what Lachman has to say, here’s an excerpt from A Secret History of Consciousness:
The study and exploration of consciousness, as opposed to the attempt to explain it, has a long and fascinating history. In the form of religious and spiritual practices it reaches back thousands of years—Hinduism, Buddhism, Christianity, Islam, and Judaism all have traditions centered on the investigation of interior states. But as a philosophical and scientific pursuit linked to the idea of evolution, its roots go back only to the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. Since the 1960s, ideas about “higher” and “expanded” consciousness have made many inroads into mainstream culture; yet few people who practice various forms of “consciousness technology” today are aware, I think, of the background to their interests nor know that some of the most influential people in academic and intellectual circles in the early part of the last century—like the philosopher Henri Bergson and the psychologist William James—were deeply involved in the study of mysticism and altered states of consciousness.
If you’d like to learn more about how to attend the event in person or over the web, please click here.