By Henrik Bogdan
The learn of the guidelines and practices linked to occultism is a quickly growing to be department of up to date scholarship. even if, such a lot examine has fascinated about English and French conversing parts and has no longer addressed the broader unfold and importance of occultism. Occultism in an international Perspective provides a extensive overseas assessment. Essays diversity around the German magical order of the Fraternitas Saturni, esoteric Satanism in Denmark, sexual magic in Colombia and the reception of occultism in sleek Turkey, India and the previous Yugoslavia. As the other kind of cultural perform, the occult isn't remoted from its social, discursive, spiritual, and political surroundings. via learning occultism in its international context, the booklet deals insights into the reciprocal relationships that color and form local occultism.
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Extra resources for Occultism in a Global Perspective
Esotericism and the Academy: Rejected Knowledge in Western Culture. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. Hanegraaff, W. J. 2013. Western Esotericism: A Guide for the Perplexed. London: Bloomsbury. Kadosh, B. [Hansen, C. ]. 1906. Den ny morgens gry: verdensbygmesterens genkomst. Hafnia: self-published. Lehrich, C. 2007. The Occult Mind: Magic in Theory and Practice. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press. Lévi, É. 1860. Histoire de la Magie: Avec une Exposition claire et précise de ses Procédés, de ses Rites et de ses Mystères.
Marco Pasi (2010), while raising much the same concerns as I do in this chapter, does not provide substantial solutions to the problem. In discussing Faivre’s approach as dealing with “Christian and post-Christian forms” of esotericism, he asks whether the denominator “Western” perhaps should be exchanged for “Christian” (Pasi 2010: 164). If we cannot get satisfactory answers to the meaning and extent of “Western” in scholarship on Western esotericism, we need to turn elsewhere. Any discussion on the meaning of “the West” must also engage in discussion on “Europe”.
Broadly speaking, what distinguishes occultism as a branch of human activity is an orientation towards hidden aspects of reality, those that are held to be commonly inaccessible to ordinary senses; an activity that simultaneously shares a certain similarity with both science and religion but cannot be reduced to either of them. The texts gathered in the present volume focus on occultism as a form of theory and practice that assumed its distinctive form in mid-century France and became widely popular through writings of Alphonse Louis Constant, better known as Éliphas Lévi (1810–75), and that subsequently found its most influential organizational paradigm – in the English-speaking world – in the shape of the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn towards the end of that same century.