Sky and Psyche
The Relationship Between Cosmos and Consciousness
Edited by Nicholas Campion and Patrick Curry
The relationship between the human soul and the stars has been central to the spiritual and esoteric traditions of Western thought, and many other cultures, for thousands of years. Medieval Christians thought that heaven was located above the earth, beyond the stars. Our modern society, however, has largely severed the relationship between the human spirit and the sky.
This book explores ideas, beliefs and practices which meet at the boundary of psychology and cosmology, the universe and human imagination. This book addresses this special relationship from a variety of challenging and inspiring approaches.
The contributors include James Hillman, the founder of archetypal psychology and Jungian analyst; astrologer Liz Greene; Professor Neville Brown of Mansfield College, Oxford; Nicholas Pearson of the Temenos Academy; Professor Jarita Holbrook of the University of Arizona; Dr Angela Vos of the University of Kent; Bernadette Brady; Jules Cashford; Noel Cobb, the former editor of Sphinx; Cherry Gilchrist; Robert Hand; and Professor Richard Tarnas of the California Institute of Integral Studies.
Introduction: Sky and Psyche: Heaven and Soul by Nicholas Campion
Part I: The Alchemical Sky
1. Love and the Alchemical Saturn by Liz Greene
2. The Azure Vault: The Caelum as Experience by James Hillman
Part II: Sky and Psyche
3. Chartres Cathedral and the Role of the Sun in the Cathedral’s Christian Platonist Theology by Bernadette Brady
4. Life Across the Cosmos by Neville Brown
5. Imagining Eternity: Weaving ‘The Heavens’ Embroidered Cloths’ by Jules Cashford
6. The Soul of the Sky by Noel Cobb
7. The Russian Spirit of Place by Cherry Gilchrist
8. A Dimensional Model for the Relationship of Consciousness and Cosmos: Mathematical Abstraction versus Conscious Experience by Robert Hand
9. Sun Gods and Moon Deities in Africa by Jarita C. Holbrook
10. Where the Heavens Meet the Earth: Inspirations from the Lives of Carl Jung, Jalal-u-din Rumi and Mahatma Ghandi by Nicholas Pearson
11. Understanding the Modern Disenchantment of the Cosmos by Richard Tarnas
12. The Secret Life of Statues by Angela Voss
‘Two conferences initiated by the Sophia Centre at Bath Spa University last year resulted in the publication of Sky and Psyche… in which astrologers and others reflect on the relationship between the human soul and the stars. Their intention was ‘not to come up with conclusions but to exchange ideas’; they have succeeded admirably.’
~ The Christian Parapsychologist
‘The 12 chapters here each have the potential to inspire, depending on the reader’s own contact with psyche. Those who see the sky as little more than a medium for cheap flights for escapist holidays are, sadly, unlikely to choose this book for aeroplane reading but if they did one might expect almost a human alchemical insight.’
~ Northern Earth
‘Complex ideas are presented not only with clarity but also as expressions of the numinous. Some sections were challenging, others almost read as poetry or as song. I loved this book because it has emerged from a different discipline, and has served to illumine my own as an artist, and has left me refreshed, uplifted and inspired.’
~ Inner Light Magazine
‘They are more than lectures. As the reader I can feel myself being personally addressed by the various contributors speaking out of professional and life experience… This book could be a rare, nourishing wellspring for life, for the amateur and professional soul carer.’
~ Anita Large, Perspectives, June – August 2007
‘There is no doubt that its various authors have combined to create a book of considerable importance, and one that can be strongly recommended to astrologers, psychotherapists, and all who are concerned with trying to understand our place within the cycle and images of the world.’
~ Mike Harding, Correlation: Astrological Association Journal of Research in Astrology
About the Editors
Dr Nicholas Campion is Principal Lecturer, Institute of Education and Humanities, and Associate Professor in Cosmology and Culture. He is the director of the Sophia Centre for the Study of Cosmology in Culture, the only academic Centre in the world to deal with cultural relationships with the sky and the cosmos. He is responsible for taking forward the Centre’s research and teaching activities, through supervising PhD students, sponsoring research projects, organising conferences and other events, and publishing research via the peer-reviewed journal Culture and Cosmos. He also serves as Programme Director of the MA in Cultural Astronomy and Astrology.
Patrick Curry holds a B.A. (University of California at Santa Cruz, 1978, in Psychology, with highest honours), M.Sc. (L.S.E., 1980, in Logic and Scientific Method), and Ph.D. (University College London, 1987, in the History and Philosophy of Science). From September 2006 until September 2009 he was a Lecturer in Religious Studies at the University of Kent (Canterbury), where he taught in the MA programme on the Cultural Study of Cosmology and Divination. From 2002-2006 he was a Lecturer at the Sophia Centre, Bath Spa University, where he co-taught the MA in Cultural Astronomy and Astronomy. He is a Tutor in the Sophia Centre for the Study of Cosmology in Culture at the University of Trinity Saint David.