"...the Imagination (or love, or sympathy, or any other sentiment) induces knowledge, and knowledge of an 'object' which is proper to it..."
Henry Corbin (1903-1978) was a scholar, philosopher and theologian. He was a champion of the transformative power of the Imagination and of the transcendent reality of the individual in a world threatened by totalitarianisms of all kinds. One of the 20th century’s most prolific scholars of Islamic mysticism, Corbin was Professor of Islam & Islamic Philosophy at the Sorbonne in Paris and at the University of Teheran. He was a major figure at the Eranos Conferences in Switzerland. He introduced the concept of the mundus imaginalis into contemporary thought. His work has provided a foundation for archetypal psychology as developed by James Hillman and influenced countless poets and artists worldwide. But Corbin’s central project was to provide a framework for understanding the unity of the religions of the Book: Judaism, Christianity and Islam. His great work Alone with the Alone: Creative Imagination in the Sufism of Ibn ‘Arabi is a classic initiatory text of visionary spirituality that transcends the tragic divisions among the three great monotheisms. Corbin’s life was devoted to the struggle to free the religious imagination from fundamentalisms of every kind. His work marks a watershed in our understanding of the religions of the West and makes a profound contribution to the study of the place of the imagination in human life.
Conference theme: astrology has been practised in some form in most cultures. In some it is rudimentary, in others complex. It may be considered magical, religious or scientific, or it may defy categorisation. There is evidence of the transmission of ideas in the near east between Egypt, Greece and Mesopotamia, and between the Near East, India and East Asia. In Mesoamerica and China technical forms arose which were entirely different to the Near Eastern tradition. Syncretism has been a major feature of astrology in India, Persia and Europe down to modern New Age culture and the globalisation of alternative spiritualities. This conference will consider questions surrounding the exchange of astrological ideas or practice between cultures, issues arising from their transmission from one period to another, or consider comparisons between the astrologies of different cultures.