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In these tumultuous times, we need two key personal skills - the ability to control our minds, and the ability to transcend our selves. These can seem like two contradictory capacities, but are they?
Philosopher and author Jules Evans gives us a crash course in what he's learned over the last 20 years of exploring human flourishing. In the first part of the session, we'll learn and practice the basics of Stoicism, the rational philosophy that emerged in ancient Greece 2300 years ago, and is enjoying a major revival today. Jules played a key role in that revival, writing the best-seller Philosophy for Life, and organising three international Stoic gatherings. He'll explain how Stoicism inspired Cognitive Behaviour Therapy and how it gives us practical tools to stay in control of our thoughts and emotions today.
In the second half of the session, we'll explore an alternative path to healing and flourishing - the ecstatic, or Dionysiac route. Drawing on his book The Art of Losing Control, and on the work of Aldous Huxley, Jules will explore how cultures through history have used techniques to find self-transcendence, including psychedelics. Moments of self-transcendence or ecstasy can give us sudden breakthroughs in healing - as testified by recent psychedelic research. But they can also be dangerous, awakening our shadow, and sometimes switching off our critical fire-wall and making us susceptible to deluded or cult-like thinking.
How can western culture find healthy transcendence? And how do we integrate the Socratic and the Dionysiac routes to healing and growth in our own lives?
Doors open at 6:30, event starts at 7:00.
Ninety One Living Room, E1 6QL
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