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Archive for Book and Movie Reviews

Book Review – The Meaning of Masonry

The Meaning of Masonry – W.L. Wilmshurst momwilmhurst

My father gave me this book as a gift right before I got my First Degree in the Blue Lodge. The author does a very good job of covering some of the deeper aspects of the Craft within Freemasonry as well as very good commentary on some of the historical background of the degrees and Rites.

The real value in this piece, is the abstraction of the Degree initiations and their respective symbolism and philosophy. While there are many, many books on masonic symbolism (see series on Symbol), this book does a very good job of tying the core Blue Lodge journey together with the articles and symbols (example: a very good section on the Apron) associated with each degree through the Royal Arch. The author’s writing style is very natural and flowing and a sense of quiet reverence and respect is felt when reading it. There is mention and commentary on the further degrees and Rites as well as a refreshing dive into the mystical heritage (Mystery Schools) and alchemical tenets of the Order.

While the original publishing is relatively dated ( 1927; my copy is a 1980 revised edition), the content is no less applicable today as it was then. In many cases, the tempo and subject matter are better suited than most of the more recent published works, for the newest generation of Brethren joining for esoteric reasons, rather than purely fraternal or political ones. As I mentioned earlier, this book does have sentimental value to me ( my father and many family members are active in Freemasonry, Eastern Star etc ), but I genuinely see this work as a solid addition to any personal Masonic library… Knife and Fork Masons included 😉



Movie Review – Leap!

I watched this movie a few days ago and have had discussions with several friends of mine who have seen it also. This movie is a great compilation of interviews and quotes which build upon each other to create a very good picture of the nature of reality as it relates to those on the path and expanding consciousness. The concept of this world as illusion is very, very old and is a difficult subject to breech in conversation with those unfamiliar with esoteric teachings or initiation.

While many Orders and the Mystery Schools have been preparing minds for this truth for thousands of years (see series on Symbol), the open discussion in a public forum is a relatively new phenomenon. The movie addresses several of the issues that prevent many from accepting this state of consciousness and does a good job of dealing with the paradoxes of this pivotal transition in thought, using general terms and concepts.

This movie is definitely on my holiday gift list for several friends and a few family members. Bravo to the film makers for even attempting to capture this truth on video.


Purchase the Leap! DVD here.

Book Review – In Pursuit of Gold~Alchemy Today in Theory and Practice

In Pursuit of Gold~Alchemy Today in Theory and Practice – Lapidus  IPG

I purchased this book several years ago during a period of exhaustive research and obsession with alchemy. This book was a limited printing and has become increasingly rare and is relatively costly to acquire. It contains a great deal of information and includes the classical wisdom from the core contributors, back to Artephius.

The text includes at least 4 complete instruction sets on how to make the stone and does reference the white powder. There is a fine assortment of classic alchemical plates in the center binding as well as modern sequences for completing the work and a useful Q&A section in Appendix I.

I must stress that this book is only useful to those with full grasp of symbolic teachings and esoteric interpretation (see series on Symbol). Those attempting to access this book using traditional western thought or a midrash-esque view of alchemical texts will find this work frustrating.

Chapters 3 (The Secret Book) and 12 (Vade Mecum) may be especially useful to those ensconced in alchemical pursuits. A fine collectors piece.

In Pursuit of Gold~Alchemy in Theory and Practice on Amazon

Book Review – The Mind as Healer ~ The New Heresy

The Mind as Healer ~ The New Heresy – Onslow Wilson, Ph.D. and contributing Authors

ThisMhealer2 book was recommended to me, by my long time mentor and Brother in several of the Orders I belong to. It is a collection of essays, reports and presentations from the First Annual Metaphysics Symposium in 1986.

The event was held at the Egyptian Museum in San Jose, California and marks a pivotal transition in Western culture’s attitude towards a mind-body connection. This piece details early references to the role and influence of the Observer, holistic health models, problems inherent to fragmented and reductionist approaches in health care as well as the myriad inconsistencies in pharmaceutically oriented treatments.

There is supportive research on the role of glands and their effectiveness in self healing when stimulated by mediation (pineal, hypothalamus, pituitary) as well as slew of case studies and documented accounts of spontaneous healing by the practitioners who treated the patients.

This piece is an eye-opener.

The Mind as Healer on Amazon

Movie Review – Magical Egypt

I own the complete 8 DVD set of this series, and honestly can’t say enough about the information contained within. Some of the content was edited prior to the new DVD releases, due to consideration for public broadcast, which originally gave me pause as to a review, but this series continues to have an incredible wealth of knowledge to dispense to anyone active in an initatic order or for seekers on the path. From the original construction dates of the Osirion and the Sphinx and the extended Pharaonic lineage back to the Shemsu Hor to the realities of Transition and the Egyptian Book of the Dead. While there is some subject matter discussed “out of school”, it is of a more subtle nature and difficult to discern. I always pick up on new bits of info every time I watch an episode. Unique and invaluable. As a Rosicrucian and Freemason, I find this body of work indispensable and genuinely quite inspirational.

Starring: John Anthony WestLon Milo DuQuette Director: Chance Gardner 2005, 60 minutes
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Movie Review – The Science of Miracles

This video/documentary is worth watching. I’ve seen it about a 4 or 5 times over the past year and have shared it with my family and a few friends. Gregg Braden does an excellent job of bringing together totally disparate information and sources to assemble really well thought out arguments and theories, that those on the path will immediately see value in. This is as much about scientific validation of age old esoteric knowledge as it is a glimpse of how science is running into esoteric brick walls and unclassifiable/“unacceptable” phenomena in its reductionist models of the universe. Gregg is a great story teller and a tireless researcher. This video is indicative of the new (not really so new) movement to bridge science and spirituality and the attempt to legitimize sacred sciences. It is good to see a mainstream effort to lay some type of public foundation for future generations in the western world.

Starring: Gregg Braden Director: Hay house;Inc. 2009, 75 minutes


Movie Review – Illuminated Chakras

Vodpod videos no longer available.

I purchased this DVD about a year ago. The 3D animations are really great and after viewing it a few times, I realized there was great depth of thought put into the graphics…alot of subtle teachings going on throughout the movie. This is a very good run through of the chakra system and is visually captivating, so this piece would make a wonderful teaching tool, gift or is very good vehicle for introducing someone to the concept of Chakras and their workings. Great for a relaxing evening break from traditional media as well. You’ll see new things every time you watch it.


Starring: Anodea Judith Director: Anodea Judith, 2004, 30 minutes.

more about “Movie Review – Illuminated Chakras“, posted with vodpod