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PublisherState University of New York Press
Release date 01.10.1994
Pages count448
File size1.2 Mb
eBook formatPaperback, (torrent)En
Book rating4.04 (23 votes)
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Book overview

The Theosophical Enlightenment is an intellectual history of esoteric ideas and the key individuals who promoted them between the late seventeenth and early twentieth century. Godwin kicks off with an engaging portrait of Richard Payne Knight and other gentleman-enthusiasts of "phallic worship" in the late 18th century, and examines various emerging esoteric movements - Spiritualism and the Theosophical Society for instance - as well as charting the development of orientalism in its various forms, as well as the early history of Western Buddhism. Godwin makes it clear he's not a 'believer', but neither does he follow the orthodox historians' tendency to dismiss occultism as irrational. Godwin doesn't have much to say about the Golden Dawn as such, but focuses more on its precursors (such as The Hermetic Brotherhood of Luxor ) and contemporaries. If you're interested in occult history, it's definitely worth a look.

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