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Correspondences: an online Journal for the Academic Study of Western Esotericism

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Correspondences. An online Journal for the Academic Study of Western Esotericism.

Call for papers. Deadline: feb. 28, 2013.


Correspondences seeks to create a public academic forum devoted to discussion and exposition of issues and currents in the field commonly known as ‘Western Esotericism.’ The editors acknowledge that the use of “Western esotericism” as an umbrella term for a widely variant field of alternate scientific and religious ideas is problematic. Thus, articles related to esoteric currents from other global cultural centers may be accepted if a connection to “alternative” currents in “western culture” is implicitly established.

The following list of areas of study is provided for clarification: Alchemy, Anthroposophy, Astrology, Eco-spirituality, Esoteric art, literature, and music, Freemasonry, Geomancy, Gnosticism, Hermeticism, Illuminism, Initiatory secret societies, Kabbalah, Magic, Mesmerism, Mysticism, Naturphilosophie, Neo-paganism, New Age, Occultism, Occulture, Paracelsianism, Rosicrucianism, Satanism, Spiritualism, Theosophy, Traditionalism, Ufology, Witchcraft.

Correspondences encourages submissions from a variety of methodological and disciplinary approaches, such as: History of Religions; Sociology; Art History; Philosophy; History of Science; Literature; ; and Cultural Studies, just to name a few.


Jimmy Elwing, rMA student, Universiteit van Amsterdam, The Netherlands.

Aren Roukema, rMA student, Universiteit van Amsterdam, The Netherlands.

Editorial Board

Egil Asprem, MA, Researcher, Universiteit van Amsterdam, The Netherlands.

Dr. Henrik Bogdan, University of Gothenburg, Sweden.

Dr. Juan Pablo Bubello, Universidad de Buenos Aires, Argentina.

Dr. Dylan Burns, University of Copenhagen, Denmark.

Dr. Peter Forshaw, Universiteit van Amsterdam, The Netherlands.

Christian Giudice, PhD student, University of Gothenburg, Sweden.

Dr. Amy Hale, St. Petersburg College, United States.

Prof. Boaz Huss, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, Israel.

Prof. Birgit Menzel, Universität Mainz, Germany.

More Information, please contact us at


ALBERTO BRANDI: The Dark Way, Introduction to the Left Hand Path.

Alberto Brandi

Alberto Brandi

La Via Oscura. Introduzione al Sentiero di Mano Sinistra (ENG: “The Dark Way. Introduction to the Left Hand Path”)

La Via Oscura. Introduzione al Sentiero di Mano Sinistra (ENG: “The Dark Way. Introduction to the Left Hand Path”)
Author(s): Alberto Brandi
Publisher: Atanòr

With a Preface by Thomas Karlsson (Stockholms Universitaet). The Left Hand Path is one of the most discussed and misunderstood phenomena in the history of esoteric and spiritual thought, long since the philosophical and doctrinal disputes of 9th-century India. This is due to its association to controversial subjects as demonology, initiatory eros, the shadow and metaphisical evil. This work (in Italian), using instruments belonging to History of Religions, of Ideas and of Philosophy, has the aim of defining the dark tradition using the principles of Kabbalah and Tantrism, trying to find the common themes of this heretic way to divine. “La via oscura” is the first work in Italy and one of the first worldwide completely dedicated to the Left Hand Path. The author investigates both the philosophical and the operative methodologies of the different “dark” systems. One of the major aims of this work is understanding if the Left Hand Path is a post-modernist invention or its roots can actually be traced back in original sources and practices. The author tries provides a theory by investigating diverse traditions, such as the Qliphothic Qabalah, Vamachara Tantrism, with notes on European witchcraft.


Born in 1976, Alberto has had a deep interest into Western Esotericism for the past 15 years.

During the academic year 2001-2002 I received my M.A. in History of Renaissance Philosophy from Naples’ University “L’Orientale”, Dept. of Philosophy and Politics, with a thesis about F.A. Yates’ interpretation of Science and Magic; In February 2007 I was awarded of my Ph.D. by the same department; the subject of my thesis was Rosicrucianism, namely the philosophical and historical roots of the Manifestos. I currently cooperate with the chair of History of Philosophy and I am member of the Research Groups “Hermes Latinus”, lead by Professor Paolo Lucentini and “Centro Studi Culture del Mediterraneo”, lead by Professor Maria Donzelli.

My current studies are focused on the heretic ways to the divine, which have come to be designated with the term “Left Hand Path”. I’ve investigated its possible roots in Qabalah and, comparatively, Tantrism. I also investigate how traditional magical concepts are interpreted in today’s magical organizations.

I am currently studying European witchcraft to investigate its relationship to concepts such as initiation and spiritual evolution. I am likewise interested in the contributes of learned magic as well as popular magic to Western Esotericism.

Information from


KABBALAH & CONTEMPORARY SPIRITUAL REVIVAL: Ben Gurion University, May 20-22, 2008

Kabbalah and Contemporary Spiritual Revival: Historical, Sociological and Cultural Perspectives
Research Workshop of the Israel Science Foundation and the Goren-Goldstein Center for Jewish Thought
Ben Gurion University, May 20-22, 2008
Conference Hall A (Ulam Knasim Aleph)

Tuesday, May 20th

1st session
Prof. Rivka Carmi, President of Ben Gurion University
Prof. Hayim Kreisel, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, Director of the Goldstein-Goren International Center for Jewish Thought
Boaz Huss, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev : Studying Contemporary Kabbalah – Achievements and Challenges
Philip Wexler, Hebrew University of Jerusalem : Toward a Social Psychology of Contemporary Spirituality

2nd session
Chair: Philip Wexler, Hebrew University of Jerusalem.
Jonathan Garb, Hebrew University of Jerusalem : The Spiritual-Mystical Renaissance in the Contemporary Haredi World
Michel Rosenthal, University of Haifa : “Are you willing to cover your head?” Notes on the spiritual economy of blessings at Rabbi Amnon Yitzhak’s lectures

3rd session
Chair: Elliot Wolfson, New York University.
Wouter Hanegraaff, University of Amsterdam : Kabbalah in Gnosis Magazine (1985-1999)
Graham Harvey, the Open University, UK : Paganism: negotiating between esotericism and animism

4th session
Chair: Graham Harvey, Open University, UK.
James R. Lewis, University of Wisconsin : The Science of Kabbalah
Chava Weissler, Lehigh University: Performing Kabbalah/“Kabbalah” in the Jewish Renewal Movement

Wednesday, May 21st
5th session
Chair: Jody Myers, California State University.
Marianna Ruah-Midbar, Zefat Academic College : Jewish Spirituality in the New Age – Emerging Jewish-Israeli Phenomena in the Junction with New Age Culture
Joseph Loss, Haifa University: Transforming Experiences in the practice of Buddha Dhamma (the Path of the Buddha) in Contemporary Israel
Adam Klin-Oron, Hebrew University of Jerusalem: Messages for the End: Eschatological Thought in 20th Century Channeling and its Israeli Varieties

6th session
Chair: Zeev Gris, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev.
Zvi Mark, Bar-Ilan University : The Contemporary Renassaince of Breslov Hasidism—Ritual, Tikkun and Messianism
Jonatan Meir, Hebrew University of Jerusalem : The Revealed which Conceals: R. Shalom Sharabi’s Kabbalah, Esotericism and the Printing of Kabbalistic Books

7th session
Chair: Jim Lewis, University of Wisconsin.
Jody Myers, California State University : Kabbalah for the Gentiles: Diverse Souls and Universalism in Contemporary Kabbalah
Yaakov Ariel, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill : From Habad Emissaries to Kabbalah Centers: New Jewish Religious Movements and the Revitalization of Judaism in the later decades of the Twentieth Century.

8th session
Chair: Yakov Ariel, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
Elliot R. Wolfson, New York University : Apocalyptic Transposition and the Status of the Non-Jew in Habad Mysticism
Yoram Bilu, Hebrew University of Jerusalem : Making the Absent Rabbi Present: Virtuality, Iconophilia, and Apparitions in Messianic Chabad

Dinner, Mateh Ba-Midbar

Thursday, May 22nd
9th session
Chair: Chava Weissler, Lehigh University.
Rachel Werczberger, Hebrew University of Jerusalem : Jewish Self-Healing – The Case of Jewish Spiritual Renewal in Israel
Shlomo Fischer, Tel Aviv University : Can New Individualist Spiritualism Also Coexist with Violence and Collective Commitments? New Spiritual Developments Among the Religious Zionist Community in Israel

10th session
Chair: Boaz Huss, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev.
Omri Ruah-Midbar, Bar Ilan University : A Comparative Study of Current Spiritualities through three Musical Versions of ‘Im Nin’alu’
Tamar Katriel, University of Haifa : Precursors to contemporary New Age spirituality in Israeli cultural ethos


May 4, 2008 at 5:48 pm

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