Rob McConnell Interviews: Mark Stavish - Institute for Hermetic Studies


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The Institute for Hermetic Studies offers high quality, affordable information for the study and practice of Traditional Western Esotericism in an open and free environment where the application of esoteric principles may flourish. Classes, seminars, workshops, retreats, and conferences on Hermeticism and its allied subjects of alchemy, Qabala, Rosicrucianism, esoteric Freemasonry, ritual magic, meditation and general esotericism are the basis for the Institute’s activities. All instruction is clear, concise, and practical in nature. While the Institute is not an initiatic body and maintains no initiatic orders, degrees, societies, or secrets, we do make ourselves available to various organizations to assist interested parties in making contact with them if they so chose. Online study materials are available which include extensive reading lists, study guides, a complete Four Year Course Outline for individual and group use, and detailed articles and monographs on the technical aspects of Hermeticism. History: The Institute for Hermetic Studies was founded in March 1997 in Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania. Then, working under the name, the Wyoming Valley Society for Esoteric Studies, the Society was formed as a local study group to act as a clearing house for information on esoteric activities and events in Northeastern Pennsylvania. The main impetus to form the Society was a one-day workshop held in August 1996 on plant alchemy sponsored by the Philosophers of Nature (PON), with Russell House, the organizations president as the principal speaker. The Wyoming Valley Society for Esoteric Studies grew quickly and was attracting members from New York, New Jersey, Philadelphia, Maryland, and Virginia, who were commuting twice monthly to attend lectures and rituals. As a result of this growth, a dedicated temple was established, weekly lectures given, and regular seminars and workshops with guest speakers presented. Given the radical change in the Society’s mission, its name was changed in July 2001 to the Institute for Hermetic Studies reflecting the organization’s widening influence. Since then, the Institute has adjusted to the changing needs of its members as well the general esoteric public. With an emphasis on personal learning and instruction classes, workshops, and seminars are held regularly. –

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