At the start of this month I started a course I created (and will continue to create) myself where I will be studying transformational/ spiritual experiences. So far it’s been one of the most fascinating projects I’ve started and I’m really excited to see how it will all unfold. Here’s my course overview. I’ll also be publishing up my calendar of lectures/ events and workshops in the next few weeks — many of which are completely free. It’s incredible how many great lectures there are in London that don’t cost a thing — and this is for a pretty niche subject.
Duration: Two years
- Modules one to three to be completed in year one
- Dissertation in year two
This is a multidisciplinary course taught by experts in a wide range of fields related to Transformational/ Spiritual Experience. You will learn through practical, experiential learning and lectures (live and online), but you also must be open to learning from unexpected sources too.
you will explore the subject of Transformational/ Spiritual Experience as well as observing and reflecting upon your thought process as you create, and do the course. The process of creating the course will become just as important as what you study.
Module one requires you to use your intuition as you select lectures that fit within the theme of Transformational/ Spiritual Experience. This is broad subject that can be studied from multiple points of view. The idea is not to try and study everything — but to create connections based on where your intuition has guided you.
Far too often we might think we’ve studied a subject objectively, covering all grounds, only to realise our belief system, upbringing and personal interests have shaped our thinking. This course asks you to be humble in your understanding of the subject.
Halfway through year one, you will be required to take a different approach to the way you think about Transformational/ Spiritual Experience. Rather than study the subject broadly, you will pick three short sentences or fragmented sources of inspiration related to Transformational/ Spiritual experience that inspire you.
The idea is to explore the wisdom in a fragment of information. How much can we learn from very little? How often do we think we’ve grasped a concept fully, only to realise later that only the surface area had been covered. Module two gets you to think in the opposite way to module one. The idea is to explore a fragment through creative learning and expand on it.
The process of creating the course yourself will become a transformational experience, forming module three, where you will document and observe what you’re doing, where you’re studying, who you’re learning from, how much it is costing you, and your reasons for doing this. You will reflect on how studying outside of an institution is different and/or similar to independent learning, and you will question the methods used to create your course.
In module three, you will also reflect on your motives for learning in the first place and how independent study may or may not be validated externally, and what new opportunities are created as a result of your studies.
1. A broad interdisciplinary overview to transformational/ spiritual experience
In this ongoing module you will explore the history, theory and key concepts in the subject of Transformational/ Spiritual Experience — inside and outside of the religious framework.
The idea is to skim the surface area of this subject, create connections and figure out what really interests you, so you can go into more depth in your second year.
- Discover an area to focus on in more depth after exploring the surface of the subject.
- Create a map of the subject, exploring the boundaries and key themes across a wide range of subjects.
- Think logically and systematically.
2. A narrow approach to fragmented sources of inspiration
In this experiential module, you will choose three short sentences, or fragments of inspiration that relate to transformational or spiritual experiences, spending up to two months exploring each sentence/passage in more depth.
The idea is to explore the concept of a fragment of information that ordinarily might be overlooked, and see where this may lead.
- Discover how much can be learnt from a fragment of information
- Break apart the boundaries of the subject as you explore the process of learning from a fragment of information and expanding it as far as you can.
- Think creatively and act spontaneously
3. Learning as a transformational experience
In this module, you will explore the process of learning, unlearning, and acquiring knowledge through observing yourself as you create and do the course. The process of this project will be just as important as the subject being studied.
Art is often seen as a subject that involves the process of unlearning, similar to Zen Buddhism where the meditator is asked to adopt what is called the Beginner’s Mindset and forget everything they were previously taught. This module asks you to examine how your current beliefs shape what you learn and how you think.
You will also reflect on your thought process, your choices for what you’ve chosen to study in module one and two — possibly discovering new themes or areas of interest that have come about from studying Transformational/ Spiritual Experiences.