Western Esoteric Traditions by Nicholas Goodrick-Clarke
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Western Esoteric Traditions
By Nicholas Goodrick-Clarke

The Western Esoteric Traditions

A Historical Introduction

By (author) See other recent books by Nicholas Goodrick-Clarke
Format: Hardback

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Western Esoteric Traditions by Nicholas Goodrick-Clarke

Book Description

Western esotericism has now emerged as an academic study in its own right, combining spirituality with an empirical observation of the natural world while also relating the humanity to the universe through a harmonious celestial order. This introduction to the Western esoteric traditions offers a concise overview of their historical development. Nicholas Goodrick-Clarke explores these traditions, from their roots in Hermeticism, Neo-Platonism, and Gnosticism in the early Christian era up to their reverberations in today's scientific paradigms. While the study of Western esotericism is usually confined to the history of ideas, Goodrick-Clarke examines the phenomenon much more broadly. He demonstrates that, far from being a strictly intellectual movement, the spread of esotericism owes a great deal to geopolitics and globalization. In Hellenistic culture, for example, the empire of Alexander the Great, which stretched across Egypt and Western Asia to provinces in India, facilitated a mixing of Eastern and Western cultures. As the Greeks absorbed ideas from Egypt, Babylon, Assyria, and Persia, they gave rise to the first esoteric movements. From the late sixteenth to the eighteenth centuries, post-Reformation spirituality found expression in theosophy, Rosicrucianism and Freemasonry. Similarly, in the modern era, dissatisfaction with the hegemony of science in Western culture and a lack of faith in traditional Christianity led thinkers like Madame Blavatsky to look East for spiritual inspiration. Goodrick-Clarke further examines Modern esoteric thought the light of new scientific and medical paradigms along with the analytical psychology of Carl Gustav Jung. This book traces the complete history of these movements and is the definitive account of Western esotericism.

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Book Details

ISBN: 9780195320992
ISBN-10: 0195320999
Format: Hardback
(240mm x 163mm x 24mm)
Pages: 296
Imprint: Oxford University Press Inc
Publisher: Oxford University Press Inc
Publish Date: 23-Oct-2008
Country of Publication: United States

Books By Author Nicholas Goodrick-Clarke

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More than a century after her death, Helena Blavatsky (1831-1891) remains a legendary figure. A gifted medium, prevailing materialism of nineteenth-century science and culture by seeking out the sources of ancient wisdom as a key to collected writings offer a treasure trove of material bearing on her extensive travels and experiences.

Black Sun by Nicholas Goodrick-Clarke Black Sun, Paperback (July 2003)

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Hitler's Priestess by Nicholas Goodrick-Clarke Hitler's Priestess, Paperback (October 2000)

A study of the ideology of Savitri Devi, whose beliefs combined Aryan supremacism and anti-semitism with Hinduism, social Darwinism and a fundamentally biocentric view of life. This book examines how Devi has been lionized by the fringe radical right as a foremother of Nazi ideology.

» View all books by Nicholas Goodrick-Clarke


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Author Biography - Nicholas Goodrick-Clarke

Nicholas Goodrick-Clarke is Professor of Western Esotericism at the University of Exeter, and Director of its Centre for the Study of Esotericism (EXESESO).

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