Musings From the Philosopher's Den - First Edition

Posted on July 2, 2017
Posted by Jim Sher

OK, it’s not the first edition of my blog. But it is a shift to a new approach to how I write my Blog. The idea came to me this week (yes, the transits are interesting), but the way I first thought of it was weird. My thought was “maybe I should write my Blog as a Blog.” That was it. I didn’t even know exactly what I meant by it. So, I thought more about it and it began to make sense to me.

From the very first email I sent to 25 people back in 2001, I have written articles, mostly on astrology as that was all that I was teaching in the beginning. I wanted to let people know about my approach to astrology and how I taught it. As the years went by, I decided to open up about my interest in the metaphysical/transformational side which, in actuality, was what my life and training was all about. I had felt that for marketing reasons I should focus on astrology publicly as I didn’t think people would want to know the more ‘serious’ side of my life.

As many of my readers know, as of late, I haven’t been writing very often, certainly not even close to the frequency I had been. The reason has been that I have been focused on teaching more classes, on developing the metaphysical side of the School and most of all on working with a small group of people in a very intense way. But, I think it was more than that. Each article took a minimum of three hours and many of them much more. I had no idea who, if anyone, was reading them and perhaps because I couldn’t sense what people were receiving, I found my energy for writing slowly decreasing….almost without noticing.

What is forcing this shift is that in the last two months I have created two 3-hour lectures. I’ve given one a month and it feels great because I can go into as much depth as I want on the topic I choose. It is taking a lot of time, but, as you might know, this gives me a chance to connect with people, which I truly enjoy.

All of what I’ve just written is, I think, why the idea of just writing in more of, shall we say, a ‘Blog way’, came to me. By ‘Blog way’ I mean I want to express my thoughts in a more casual, spontaneous way, not having to develop each idea quite as fully as I did in all of my previous posts.

This is going to be an experiment. We’ll see where it goes and as the experiment progresses, I’ll learn how I feel about it as well as how it’s received. I hope my readers will be patient and be willing to play right along with me. We will see.

I think my first blog post has to explain why and how I came up with the name “Philosopher’s Den.” Believe it or not, I have a date for this name. It was February 8, 2000 at 10:10am. I have to laugh at this one. I was in the shower wondering if I ought to create a metaphysical bookstore. The last thing I was interested in was running a store, but I thought that in order to teach astrology and other courses, I would need a place and the bookstore might finance that space. It was not my best idea and fortunately was soon rejected as a waste of time. But before I gave the bookstore idea up, I was in the shower wondering what a good name for the store would be. Suddenly the title “The Philosopher’s Den” came into my mind. I didn’t think about it at all. It just appeared.

I loved the name and still do. It said so much to me. I wanted to capture the sense that philosophy need not be stuffy, a mere intellectual exercise, and distant from regular life. One ought to be able to find a way to express it in ways that are accessible to everyone interested in ideas that might take us on a journey beyond our usual limitations. And, of course, a sip of good Scotch might not hurt either.

The image being used, which my friend and administrator Carol Pilkington found, is a painting by Michel Corneille the Younger, a French painter and engraver living in Paris in the late 1600’s. The name of the painting is “Aspasia Surrounded by Greek Philosophers.” Aspasia is in the center of this image. Rather than being marginalized, she is the one who is bringing the philosophers together. Little is known about her for certain, but she was the lover and partner of the statesman Pericles living around 430 B.C. According to Plutarch her house became an intellectual center in Athens, attracting the most prominent writers and thinkers of the time, including Socrates. She must have been quite a special person.

Also, to me, the image of a ‘muse’ captures the feeling of the ‘feminine’ aspect of life. The feminine archetype is open to receiving and to finding ways to support the best aspects of what it means to be human. In the Gnostic tradition, Sophia represents the Divine spark in each of us. Does that not suggest that ‘She’ is the source in us of those forces that inspire us to reach higher understandings that ennoble, or even ‘civilize’ us to be able to reach higher states of consciousness?

Hopefully this image lives up to the expression that a picture is worth a thousand words and expresses the essence of what I am trying to convey by calling this blog, ‘Musings from the Philosophers’ Den.’

More to come…

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4 responses to “Musings From the Philosopher’s Den – First Edition”

  1.' weaver says:

    sounds like you are right on Time. looking forward to your blog-style blog!

  2. Hi Jim, I enjoyed reading this and look forward to more! I will also say that I have read the vast majority of your writings and I find myself sad that I neglected to tell you how much I enjoyed them and/or resonated with them. Thanks for all you do and have done. I would love to study with you but being on the East Coast makes that impossible – at least until you are ready to do something on line… 🙂

  3.' Ryan says:

    I enjoyed the first blog in the philosophers den! Well written Jim. Thank you. Looking forward to the next one.

  4.' Donna Balsz says:

    I’m looking forward to hearing more from The Philosopher’s Den!!

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