The Course of Study
Go to:Introductory Information
I greatly admire the concept of the "Open University", which seems to me to render obsolescent the older, more prestigious, and much more expensive model, and to make redundant political arguments about how universities should be funded by the State. They clearly should not be.
I was also inspired by the University of the Third Age, in which those of us who have attained a "certain age" may pool our resources of time and interest to enrich each other's lives at little financial cost to anyone.
But above all, recognising that the Universe as a whole is the ultimate ground for human activity, I was anxious to place the emphasis on a study of man's age-old struggle to understand himself and his environment, and on reviewing some of the more significant scientific, moral, and religious conclusions which may be drawn therefrom. Narrow specialism will accordingly be avoided.
I was therefore astonished and extremely grateful to discover that this task had already been undertaken by Albert Pike nearly one hundred and fifty years ago, and that all I had to do was re-present it to the Internet virtually unchanged. The first instalment was presented in September, 2004.
Later, I took advantage of the work of P D Ouspensky to produce the "lectures" in the "Hermetic Philosophy" section which take a more "scientific" approach than the "classical" Masonic lectures.
A seminar is a group of students working together under the guidance of a teacher. This CD contains contributions from many distinguished teachers, both in the "Library" and in the "University" lectures.
In this CD, therefore, the "University" may be thought of as an educational interface between the Temple and the World. Material will be digested by the imaginative faculty of the individual student and tested against the sounding-board of intuitive psychological truth.
The question is the principal supplementary instructional technique. It is hoped that in seeking their own answers to questions, students will consult not only their own experience of life and living but will also search out what other individuals at different times and in different places have recorded about their own experiences. Skill in the intelligent use of the Internet will be found to give access at minimal cost to a wealth of educational material beyond the fondest dreams of university students and library users of previous generations.
Readers accustomed to the "examination culture" currently prevalent in the UK will be relieved to know that questions will be asked solely to encourage (or provoke) students to inquire more deeply into certain aspects of life and thus add value to their personal lives. Answers need not be communicated to anyone — but may optionally be posted by readers to the Ardue Mailing List for the benefit of other students. Whether or not you choose to publish your thoughts and findings, it is hoped that your deliberations on questions raised in this or any other forum will help you to make timely and satisfactory responses to the questions and problems you encounter in everyday life.
The books on the "shelves" of the Temple Library constitute the main works of reference. Other, usually more recent, works are recommended as aids to keeping "up to date". But this is not an "academic" exercise. The ideas suggested directly or indirectly by the contents of these pages should be reflected upon in the light of the reader's personal experience so as to become assimilated into a coherent personal philosophy. "Degrees" mark significant steps in the student's consciousness of personal progress and may be conferred by the student in person when he or she feels ready.
A few exercises are suggested for developing the student's powers of observation and reflection.
Students are encouraged to make use of the virtually infinite resources of the Internet as long as they remain available.
No application for admission will be refused, but members will be expected to conduct their correspondence in accordance with the Guidelines which will be posted at intervals.
Once you are a member, address your posts to firstname.lastname@example.org. Only members will be able to read your messages, and there is little likelihood that participation will make you a target for unwanted SPAM.
I hope that a way may be found to extend the life of the Mailing List after I have "retired" from the world.