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The Ancient of Days

Seattle Study Center

The Masonic Philosophical Society has been growing throughout the world steadily. While we offer many different resources for our members to grow and learn online, there is simply no substitute for attending the Study Center nearest you. When you attend a Study Center of the Masonic Philosophical Society you will have the opportunity, not only to hear from a speaker, but to participate in the dialogue.

Seattle Study Center
764 Broadway, Tacoma, WA 98402
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What Purpose Do Dreams Serve in Your Life?
Date: 5/18/2019 10:00:00 AM
Topic of Study: Behavioral Science
Presenter: Carolyn Bellinger-Kawahara
Synopsis: Why do we dream? Are dreams simply random neurological events that occur during sleep or do they have meaning beyond that? Scientists have no agreement on this. The true function of dreams is not yet completely understood; indeed, the true function of sleep itself is not fully understood, although it follows predictable stages. Dreams usually occur in the rapid-eye-movement (REM) stage. Everyone dreams, even those who say they did not recall dreaming. Some people have difficulty remembering their dreams while others have very high dream recall. If dreams do have meanings, they are couched in a symbolic language that must be interpreted by the dreamer. An awareness of our personal and cultural symbolic languages gives us a valuable tool help our Masonic development.

How Does Our Spatial Environment Influence Us?
Date: 6/22/2019 10:00:00 AM
Topic of Study: Art
Presenter: Carolyn Bellinger-Kawahara
Synopsis: The psychological effect of our spatial environment is a well-studied phenomenon in fields ranging from marketing to architecture, to feng shui. For example, how do you feel eating in a fast food restaurant? How do you feel in a courtroom? In a library? Spatial proportions, color palette, and design style havebeen used since earliest times to promote desired feelings and behaviors in people. Perhaps changing our space can promote better behavior and feelings, such as empathy or compassion.

Is It Significant that Women Numbered Among Masons in Masonic Operative Guilds?
Date: 7/27/2019 10:00:00 AM
Topic of Study: History
Presenter: Karen Kidd
Synopsis: One of the reasons Malecraft Masons put forward to suggest that women can't be Freemasons is that there were no women among the medieval operative masons, those who built the great cathedrals. When I name them - and I can - they generally just shuffle off with a message of "never mind." But it makes me wonder, does the inclusion of women among the operative support the right of women to be Freemasons? Or do women have the right to be Freemasons in modern times, even if there had been no women in the operative Masonic guilds?

Does Our Ruling Love Define Us?
Date: 8/24/2019 10:00:00 AM
Topic of Study: Theology
Presenter: Janet Hendrickson
Synopsis: Swedish theologian and spiritualist Emanuel Swedenborg wrote "A man's very life is his love, and such as is the love, such is the life; in fact such is the whole man; but it is the dominant or ruling love which makes the man." We will dive more deeply into Swedenborg's writings on this topic and discuss whether or not they hold true in our lives. Do our identities ultimately come down to love, or do other feelings or traits have more significance?

Are Space and Time the Ultimate Illusion?
Date: 9/28/2019 10:00:00 AM
Topic of Study: Formal Science
Presenter: Byron Gorrell
Synopsis: As human beings, we take space and time as facts of life. Those two concepts underlie much of what we accept to be "reality" as we know it. Without those concepts, we would potentially cease to exist, at least in any form we recognize. So what is the nature of space and time? Are they truly as immutable as we think?

Why Are Ceremonies and Rituals Important in Our Lives?
Date: 10/26/2019 10:00:00 AM
Topic of Study: Behavioral Science
Presenter: Carolyn Bellinger-Kawahara
Synopsis: Virtually every culture on earth has its own cultural ceremonies and celebrations. Why is this so? What purpose(s) do such rituals serve? Some types of ceremonies, such as marriage, are observed in most or many cultures, albeit in each culture's unique way. Other ritual are culture-specific, such as the bar/bat mitzvah or other "coming-of-age" ceremonies. We will discuss what components comprise rituals in general and why those things are important. We will also examine the effect(s) of rituals of the participants and why one might choose to participate. As Masons, we do ritual each and every time we meet for Lodge and the ceremonies are designed to invoke a specific effect in each Freemason.

What Is Your Quest? Manifestations of the Search for the Grail
Date: 11/23/2019 10:00:00 AM
Topic of Study: Literature
Presenter: Janet Hendrickson
Synopsis: The "Story of the Quest for the Holy Grail" is not one story but many. The Grail itself takes different forms and has different purposes, depending on which story is being told. This session of the MPS will look at some of the different strands of Grail lore and what their differences suggest about humanity's highest values and deepest desires.

We are dark.
Date: 12/28/2019 10:00:00 AM
Topic of Study: Natural Science
Presenter: WE ARE DARK IN DECEMBER
Synopsis: We are dark.

"A human being is a part of a whole, called by us universe, a part limited in time and space. He experiences himself, his thoughts and feelings as something separated from the rest ... a kind of optical delusion of his consciousness. This delusion is a kind of prison for us, restricting us to our personal desires and to affection for a few persons nearest to us. Our task must be to free ourselves from this prison by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature in its beauty."
Albert Einstien
Physicist
Personal Writings

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