We discuss Clement's endgame, where the Gnostic encounters god face-to-face after a lengthy transformative evolution into higher and higher spiritual forms. Things get seriously esoteric.
Podcast Episodes Themed "Otherworld Journeys"
Episode 76: The Chaldæan Oracles and Theurgy
We have looked at what kind of world the Chaldæan Oracles set forth. We turn now to the ways in which the adept navigates that world – through ritual, epiphanic visions, cognitive disciplines, talismans, and by leaving the body through breathing. This is theurgy, and esoteric religion in antiquity would never be the same again.
Episode 59: Introducing Rome
The Eternal City, and the empire she built, cast a long shadow down the ages. This episode consists of some preliminary historical musings on Rome, and, more importantly, on the idea of Rome.
Episode 54: Frances Flannery on Jewish Dreams in Antiquity
In an interview bringing together both the visionary narratives of apocalyptic and the practical side of the Hekhalot traditions, Professor Frances Flannery leads us through the corridors of dreaming and the esoteric in antique Judaism.
We give an overview of the complex and fascinating Hekhalot and Merkavah texts, works not only describing the journey to God’s throne, but giving instructions on how to get there, and not merely enumerating the angelic hierarchies, but giving the tools to summon and command them.
We explore the fascinating parallels between Near Eastern visionary materials and the Jewish apocalyptic texts of the Second Temple. Matthew Neujahr is our guide through the shifting sands of some seriously esoteric texts, as we sift what can be proven from the speculative material.
Episode 50: John J. Collins on Apocalyptic
In this episode Professor John J. Collins introduces a fascinating product of Second Temple Judaism, and a fertile vehicle for esoteric speculation beyond the bounds of Jewry – apocalyptic literature. All will be revealed!
Plato looked up with his intellect; the world of eternal truths he fixed his inner gaze on was located above the earthly realm. In this episode we examine the accounts which he gives us of the journey there.
Episode 30: Introducing Plato’s Republic
Plato’s Republic is widely regarded as his masterwork. It is complex and sly. We introduce the dialogue and try to come to grips with it in a general way, noting the intricate structure of the text itself.
Episode 29: Otherworlds, Inner Worlds, and Utopias
Plato’s Republic is the world’s first utopia. But what is a utopia, exactly, and how does it differ from the other invisible worlds we encounter in western esoteric traditions, the otherworlds and inner worlds? We survey types of esoteric space.
The greatest musician of antiquity was also the founder of mystery-rites, the author of curious theological poetry, and the most famous man to make the journey to the underworld while still alive. In this episode we examine the myth of Orpheus and the Orphic myths.
Episode 20: All for One, and One for All: Parmenides of Elea
Parmenides is the original philosopher of pure Being. And he learned all about Being from a goddess on a trip through the underworld. Philosophy used to be really interesting.