Welcome to How Curious!

Acropolis

Browse the menus to explore the ancient mysteries, or follow the suggested order through the pages

You can either explore the features in the site menus in your own order, or you can follow them through in the suggested order. This is the order in which they would run if this was a physical book. It starts with the stars, goes to geometry and then pulls both of these back down into the mortal realm by looking at mythologised landscapes. There will be a link at the bottom of each page to take you through to the next page in the suggested trail. Just follow the yellow link road:

START THE SUGGESTED JOURNEY HERE

Lower down on this page you will also find this order laid out as an index, linked to the articles.

 

What’s it all about?

The explorations here are all adventures of detective work and are enjoyable as intellectual journeys of discovery, hence the title of the site: How Curious! But there is also another level, that may be somewhat more subtle.

Rupert Sheldrake’s theory of morphic resonance describes the accumulation of fields of habit which act upon similar forms by resonance, so that a thing that has happened before is more likely to happen again, and things of a particular type find it easier to do things that others of their type have already done, as they are in resonance through likeness of form.

Exploration of and reflection upon certain Hermetic types of mystery can be uplifting, enlivening, even initiatory.

As a natural philosophy – a scientific attempt to explain nature – this is non-Platonic, because it views everything as subject to evolution, so that even the apparently eternal laws of nature are seen just as particularly established habits.

However, the very same theory supports the existence of a type of initiation into an enriched state of consciousness, where these initiations can most certainly be called Platonic. According to the theory of morphic resonance, as Sheldrake himself says in his book The Presence of the Past, ancestral imprint, cultural Dreamtime – these have objective transpersonal reality and are responsible for the power behind initiations that introduce the individual to collective and very ancient cultural material. The individual feels their consciousness expand as it resonates with extraordinarily rich repositories of accumulated collective imprint. Clearly, in order to work in this way, cultures need a strong strand of fixity – tradition, even if in the ideal this is complemented by creativity, inspiration and innovation, and is not used to support outmoded, unfair societal structures.

So maintaining this fixity for initiatory purposes means pro-actively seeking out forms that have not changed, just as eternal forms are the essence of initiation in Platonic-Hermetic mysticism. This is why morphic resonance supports Platonism not as a natural philosophy, but as a mystic, initiatory path. The ancients called the presentation of material with initiatory power Mysteries. If we are to keep our obsessions with celebrity (universal knowns), wealth (richness) and technology (sense of connectedness) in check – which we must do, for ecological reasons if nothing else – then initiation into these Mysteries must certainly be part of the mix, for it provides these same things at a deeper level, through sustainable methods.

Plato_-_Allegory_of_the_Cave

 

 

 

Taurus Lascaux

 

 

Left: Plato’s Cave Allegory by Markus Maurer. Right: Bull painting from the Lascaux Caves

Plato describes initiation as the process of rising out of the cave of shadows (purely local perception) into the realm of eternal, universal Forms. He also describes initiation as a chariot ride around the wheel of the heavens with the gods, beholding the eternal Forms. In the Hermeticism that evolved out of Platonic philosophy, the initiate was advised to “rise out of time into eternity, and see the universal in the particular”, and constellations came to be seen as closely related to Platonic Forms; for e.g., Taurus, say, was closely identified with the Platonic Form of cattle, by which Nature was able to replicate forms by means of Memory.

800px-Titian_Bacchus_and_Ariadne

Bacchus and Ariadne, Titian. Mortal maid is raised into the chariot of the god and driven into the stars to dwell with the gods, like Plato’s initiate

So, this website is concerned with exactly what’s described above – seeking out and exploring very ancient culturally significant forms that have not changed in long aeons, and doing so for initiatory purposes.

The main types of unchanging form dealt with here are:

  • Geometry. As ideas, and within their own definitions, these are actually eternal. (Pure Platonism) It is possible for the study of geometry to pursue intellectual complexity for its own sake, but the kind of geometry we are concerned with here must have a harmonious aesthetic appeal too, and this type of geometry comes under the title of “Sacred Geometry”, to distinguish it from the purely intellectual pursuit.

 

  • Mythologised constellations. In cultural terms, these are effectively eternal. (Pro-active Platonism). Generation after generation has looked up at effectively the same patterns, wondered at them in awe, used them as simulacra for animal forms, and made stories about them. They are as such beautifully rich repositories of human awe and tradition, and if approached in a way that creates resonance to these mythic forms, their returns in the night sky through the wheel of the year can have a very uplifting effect on our sense of time and – if we draw them into the landscape – our sense of place. Hence:-

 

  • Mythologised Landscape features and Hermetic schemes. Again, if they consist of hard rock that is only eroded very slowly, mythologised landscape forms can be considered as effectively eternal in cultural terms. Hermetic schemes work by taking stellar (and planetary) mythic archetypes and/or sacred geometric forms and grounding them into the landscape in ways that integrate sensitively (i.e. involving synchronicity). This grounding is really quite essential; it’s how we draw this richness of morphic resonance close to us, integrating it into our perception of the world, rather than just projecting it up into the skies. “As above, so below; stars in the sky, stars on the ground” says the old Hermetic tenet.

 

That is why this website’s main menus are …

 

As an initiate, you will be well-placed to undergo balancing  periods of  media / tech / celebrity / consumerist fast, setting aside periods of time to cut down on modern trappings. This site’s sister blogsite, The Confessions of a Hungry Dawn Raver(related to this one because it has the same author, if nothing else) is concerned with the more literal types of fasting, and with less subtle types of ecstatic transcendence.

William Glyn-Jones

START THE SUGGESTED JOURNEY HERE

 

 

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