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Online Seminar Series

A Voice from the South by Anna Julia Cooper and The Souls of Black Folk by W.E.B. Du Bois - Part Three

>> EVENT POSTPONED TO 2022 <<

 

"We too often mistake individuals’ honor for race development and so are ready to substitute pretty accomplishments for sound sense and earnest purpose."

"The slave went free; stood a brief moment in the sun; then moved back again toward slavery."

Reading Selection:

Part Three - Feminism, Social Service, Education, Race Politics

The Souls of Black Folk - Chapters 9-12

Schedule:

12:00-2:00PM PDT

 

Tutors

Anika Prather and Andy Gilman

Location

Online. Register to receive the link. 

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Greek Philosophy

Free Community Seminar Series

The Second and Forth Wednesdays of each month
Next session is December 11, 2019

Why is Greek philosophy fundamental to the history of western civilization? This series, which includes readings from pre-socratic philosophers, leading up to Plato and Aristotle, will carefully work through the perennial questions these thinkers grappled with: What is knowledge? What is the best way to live a life? What is the best political system? What is the nature of the world? What is the nature of the divine?

The December 11 reading is -
Apology by Plato
Click the icon to download.

 

Schedule:
12:00 - 1:00PM

Location: 
Greater Goods
145 West El Roblar 
Ojai, California 93023

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Online Seminar Series

Stoicism - Part IV -The Enchiridion (Handbook) 
by Epictetus

Sunday, February 28, 2021

This series explores to varied aspects of Stoicism through the writings of Seneca, Epictetus, and Marcus Aurelius. How best to live life, in the best and worst of times...

Schedule:

12:00-2:00PM PST

 

Tutor

Kevin Walker

Location

Online. Register to receive the link. 

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Online Seminar Series

Le Morte d'Arthur - by Thomas Malory -
Lancelot and Guinevere - Part One

Sunday, October 31, 2021

"In the midst of the lake Arthur was ware of an arm clothed in white samite, that held a fair sword in that hand." Join us as we move through these 15th century prose tales of King Arthur, Guinevere, Lancelot, Merlin and the Knights of the Round Table.

Reading Selection:

Book III, Ch. 1

Book VI, Ch.s 1, 3-5, 10-12

Book XI, Ch.s 1-10 

Book XII, Ch.s 1-10

Schedule:

12:00-2:00PM PDT

 

Tutor

Zoe Appleby

Location

Online. Register to receive the link. 

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Free Community Seminar Series
Greek Philosophy

The Second and Fourth Wednesdays
Wednesday, December 11, 2019

12:00-1:00PM

Why is Greek philosophy fundamental to the history of western civilization? This series will carefully work through the perennial questions these thinkers grappled with: What is knowledge? What is the best way to live a life? What is the nature of the world? 

December 11 reading:

Apology by Plato

Location:

Greater Goods

145 West El Roblar in Ojai

Free Community Seminar Series
Eastern Classics

The First and Third Thursdays
Thursday, December 19, 2019

12:00-1:00PM

Like the west, the east has its own tradition of influential texts that address the perennial questions of human kind. Centering around the bodies of work from China, Japan, and India, this series will focus on the texts of Taoism, Confucius, Buddhism, and Hinduism.

December 19 reading:

Tao Te Ching Chapter 5

Location:

The Ojai Library

111 East Ojai Avenue in Ojai

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Online Seminar Series

Dialogues Concerning the Two Chief World Systems
by Galileo - Continued

Saturday, April 24, 2021

"To apply oneself to great inventions, starting from the smallest beginnings, is no task for ordinary minds; to divine that wonderful arts lie hid behind trivial and childish things is a conception for superhuman talents."

Reading: 

Aristotle - On the Heavens - Book Two, Chapter 14

Galileo: First Day, page 101 to Second Day - page 107, and 

Second Day - page 113, first full paragraph to page 182, middle of page

Schedule:

12:00-2:00PM PDT

 

Tutor

Larry Shields

Location

Online. Register to receive the link. 

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Online Free Community Series

Eastern Classics

Thursday, August 20, 2020
5:30-6:30PM PDT

Like the west, the east has its own tradition of influential texts that address the perennial questions of human kind. Centering around the bodies of work from China, Japan, and India, this series will focus on the texts of Taoism, Confucius, Buddhism, and Hinduism. 

August 20 Reading:

Bhagavad Gita - Chapters 8 (verse 18) - Chapter 9

Schedule:

5:30-6:30PM PDT

Location: 

Online. Click Here.

Meeting ID: 810 4367 0999

Online Seminar Series

Nietzsche - On the Advantage and Disadvantage of History for Life

Thursday, August 20, 
and Thursday, August 27, 2020
6:00-8:00PM PDT

“The power of gradually losing all feeling of strangeness or astonishment, and finally being pleased at anything, is called the historical sense or historical culture.”

Tutors:

Roxana Zirakzadeh and Andy Gilman

Schedule:

6:00-8:00PM PDT, both evenings.

Location: 

Online. Register to receive the link. 

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Eastern Classics

Free Community Seminar Series

The First and Third Thursdays of each month
Next session is December 19, 2019

Like the west, the east has its own tradition of influential texts that address the perennial questions of human kind. Centering around the bodies of work from China, Japan, and India, this series will focus on the texts of Taoism, Confucius, Buddhism, and Hinduism. We invite you to join us. 

The December 19 reading is:
The Tao Te Ching - Chapter Five

Click icon to download, or click here
for all chapters
.

Schedule:
12:00 - 1:00PM

Location: 

The Ojai Library

111 East Ojai Avenue

Ojai, California 93023

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What are the fundamental principles of our Republic? Are these principles based on a view of objective reality/nature, or simply the "consent of the governed"? Are they based on nature or consent? Are they inalienable?

January 13 reading:

Federalist Paper 10 - Part II

Location:

The Ojai Library

111 East Ojai Avenue in Ojai

Free Community Seminar Series
The Foundations of Our Republic

The Second and Fourth Mondays
Monday, January 13, 2020

5:30-6:30PM

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Online Seminar

Free Community Seminar Series
The Foundations of Our Republic

Monday, April 20, 2020

5:30-6:30PM PST

What are the fundamental principles of our Republic? Are these principles based on a view of objective reality/nature, or simply the "consent of the governed"? Are they based on nature or consent? Are they inalienable?

April 20 reading:

Federalist Papers 66 and 68

Location:

Online. Register to receive the link.

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Online Seminar Series - NOW MEETING

Hero with 1,000 Faces by Joseph Campbell
 

Tuesday Afternoons - April 19 - June 7

What is the agony of growth? 

“The agony of breaking through personal limitations is the agony of spiritual growth.
Art, literature, myth and cult, philosophy, and ascetic disciplines are instruments to help
the individual past his limiting horizons into spheres of ever-expanding realization."

The Hero with a Thousand Faces, first published in 1949, is a work of comparative mythology by Joseph Campbell, in which the author discusses his theory of the mythological structure of the journey of the archetypal hero found in world myths. Campbell explores the theory that mythological narratives frequently share a fundamental structure. The similarities of these myths brought Campbell to write his book in which he details the structure of the monomyth. He calls the motif of the archetypal narrative, "the hero's adventure". The book has influenced a number of artists, filmmakers, musicians, producers and poets.

 

We invite you to join us as we explore this highly affecting work in a small group, one chapter per week for eight weeks, taking place on Tuesday afternoons from 12:00-1:30PM Pacific Time, as we explore this influential work. All reading materials will be supplied and sessions will be facilitated by tutors experienced in shared inquiry and the Socratic method. Groups will be limited to 14 participants and no prior knowledge is required. Teachers will be offered 2 CEU credits for participation as requested.  

This nine-week series is $275. Community of Lifelong Learners subscribers receive a discount of $50 through a refund. Payment options are available. 

Click here for full details.

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EVENT SOLD OUT

Online Seminar

The Fire Next Time by James Baldwin

Saturday, January 23, 2021

 

“The most dangerous creation of any society is the man who has nothing to lose.”

Schedule:
12:00-2:00PM PST


Tutors:
Anika Prather and Paul O'Reilly

Please email the Agora Foundation if you would like to attend a second future offering of this event. 

The Foundations of Our Republic, Take II

Free Community Seminar Series

The Second and Forth Mondays of each month
Next session is December 23

What are the fundamental principles of our Republic? Are these principles based on a view of objective reality/nature, or simply the "consent of the governed"? Depending on how one addresses the previous question: Are these principles changeable, and if so on what grounds? How should one read the founding documents? What authority does the Executive, Legislative, and Judiciary branches have? What are rights? Are they based on nature or consent? Are they inalienable?

The December 23 reading is -
the Federalist Paper 10
Click the icon to download.

 

Schedule:
5:30 - 6:30PM

 

Readings
Declaration of Independence, The Articles of Confederation, selected Federalist Papers, selected Anti-Federalist Papers, the U.S. Constitution, selections from Democracy in American, Dred Scott Decision and Dissenting View (edited), selected Lincoln speeches, Lincoln Douglass Debates (edited), Plessy v. Ferguson and Dissenting View (edited), Brown v. Board of Education, Letter from Birmingham Jail, Proposed Equal Rights Amendment, UN Declaration of Human Rights

 

Location: 

The Ojai Library

111 East Ojai Avenue

Ojai, California 93023

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Online Seminar Series - NOW MEETING

Selections from Philosophical Investigations
by Ludwig Wittgenstein

 

Thursday Evenings - January 6 to 27

“Philosophy is a battle against the bewitchment of our intelligence by means of language.”

Philosophical Investigations by Ludwig Wittgenstein was published posthumously in 1953. Within the analytic tradition, the book is considered by many as being one of the most important philosophical works of the 20th century, putting forth the view that conceptual confusions surrounding language use are at the root of most philosophical problems. The book paved the way for philosophy in the middle of the twentieth century and continues to influence contemporary philosophers working in the philosophy of language and mind.

 

“Language is a labyrinth of paths. You approach from one side and know your way about; you approach the same place from another side and no longer know your way about.” We invite you join us as we explore this challenging and highly influential work. 

 

These four online seminars will take place on Thursday evenings, 5:30-7:30PM Pacific Time. All reading materials (in English translation) will be supplied and our seminar leader will be Walter Sterling of St. John’s College. The group will be limited to 14 participants and no prior knowledge is required. Teachers will be offered 2 CEU credits for participation as requested.

Click here for full details.

Online Seminar

Series on Love - 
Nicomachean Ethics (Book 8 and 9 edited) by Aristotle

Saturday, July 18, 2020 

Othello said about himself that he “loved not wisely but too well.” It seems that one can love things too much, but can one really love someone too much? Does the answer to that question depend on what is meant by love? Perhaps more fundamentally: are there different kinds of love? This series will devote itself to a discussion of the mystery and majesty of love.

Future Readings in the Series:

Augustine, Sermon on Love
Dostoevsky, A Gentle Creature

Ibsen, A Doll’s House
Shakespeare, Othello

Sigrid Unset, Gunnar’s Daughter
Flannery O’Connor, The Lame Shall Enter First
C.S. Lewis, Four Loves

Schedule:

12:00-2:00PM PDT

 

Tutor

Paul O'Reilly

Location

Online. Register to receive the link. 

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Online Seminar Series

Le Morte d'Arthur - by Thomas Malory - Book Three

Sunday, May 30, 2021

"In the midst of the lake Arthur was ware of an arm clothed in white samite, that held a fair sword in that hand." Join us as we move through these 15th century prose tales of King Arthur, Guinevere, Lancelot, Merlin and the Knights of the Round Table.

Schedule:

12:00-2:00PM PDT

 

Tutor

Zoe Appleby

Location

Online. Register to receive the link. 

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Online Seminar Series

Ocean and Underworld - 
Purgatorio by Dante - Part Two

Sunday, June 6, 2021

What mysteries are hidden underwater and deep in the underworld? Will one who explores these realms discover ancestors, gods, monsters,... or even oneself? This series will consider the ocean and the underworld as depicted in these classic literary texts.

June 6 reading:
Dante, Purgatorio - Cantos 17-34

Future Readings in the Series:

Cervantes, Don Quixote - The Cave of Montesinos
Shakespeare, The Tempest
Melville, Moby Dick (selections)
Gabriel Garcia Marquez, The Handsomest Drowned Man in the World
T.S. Eliot, The Wasteland

Schedule:

12:00-2:00PM PDT

Tutor:

Elizabeth Reyes

Location:

Online. Register to receive the link.

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Online Seminar Series

Groundwork of the Metaphysics of Morals
by Immanuel Kant - Session Three

Saturday, May 28, 2022

Is it possible to know what is morally right?

 

In this short work, Immanuel Kant (1724-1804) offers a foundation for a theory of ethics based on the values of freedom and autonomy and how they relate to an Enlightenment conception of persons as rational, capable of their own intellectual discernment, and therefore endowed with morality and made responsible for their behavior. As such, Kant helps to provide the individual rights perspective that is often counterbalanced by collectivist tendencies in Western democracies and, in so doing, offers one of the key moral frameworks that continues to inform public debate.

 

In this analysis of moral concepts, Kant takes what he claims to be our average, ordinary intuitions about ethics and formalizes them into a philosophical theory that, he believes, we each already hold in nascent form. His arguments are tight and compelling, though not without interesting and revealing philosophical problems. This fact and the foundational role of the text in ethics make the Groundwork one of the most studied of all philosophical texts.

This three-part online series will explore one section per session, about one month apart. 

May 28 Reading:

Section Two - Second Half

Schedule:

12:00-2:00PM PDT

 

Tutor

Anthony Beavers

Location

Online. Register to receive the link. 

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Online Seminar Series

The Work of Flannery O'Connor
Good Country People by O'Connor and Thomas Aquinas – Summa Theologiae – Question 49, Article 3 on Prudence (below)

Sunday, September 18, 2022

Mary Flannery O'Connor (March 25, 1925 – August 3, 1964) was an American novelist, short story writer and essayist. She wrote two novels and 32 short stories, as well as a number of reviews and commentaries. Her writing is exquisite and reflects her Catholic faith and frequently examined questions of morality and ethics. She was a Southern writer who often wrote in a sardonic style and relied heavily on regional settings and troubling characters. 

"Anything that comes out of the South is going to be called grotesque by the northern reader, unless it is grotesque, in which case it is going to be called realistic... The stories are hard but they are hard because there is nothing harder or less sentimental than Christian realism... When I see these stories described as horror stories I am always amused because the reviewer always has hold of the wrong horror."

Despite her secluded life, her writing reveals an an incredible grasp of human behavior. O'Connor gave many lectures on faith and literature, traveling quite far despite her frail health. Politically, she maintained a broadly progressive outlook in connection with her faith, voting for John F. Kennedy in 1960 and supporting the work of Martin Luther King Jr. and the civil rights movement. We invite you to join us as we read a collection of her work, meeting about about once per month online. 

September 18 Reading:

Good Country People

The Complete Stories - Farrar, Straus and Giroux; First edition (January 1971)

ISBN - 978-0374515362

and Aquinas on Prudence

Schedule:

12:00-2:00PM PDT

 

Tutor

Kevin Walker

Location

Online. Register to receive the link. 

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Online Seminar Series

Stoicism - Part V - Meditations by Marcus Aurelius
Books 1-6

Saturday, May 1, 2021

This series explores to varied aspects of Stoicism through the writings of Seneca, Epictetus, and Marcus Aurelius. How best to live life, in the best and worst of times...

Schedule:

12:00-2:00PM PST

 

Tutor

Kevin Walker

Location

Online. Register to receive the link. 

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Online Seminar Series

Michel de Montaigne, Part III

Sunday, September 6, 2020 

Montaigne is widely appreciated both for his literary innovations as well as for his contributions to philosophy.  As a writer, he is credited with having developed a new form of literary expression, the essay. As a philosopher, he is best known for his skepticism, which profoundly influenced major figures in philosophy such as Descartes and Pascal. Join us as we explore one of the most important figures of the French Renaissance.

September 6th Reading:

Of Experience

Future Readings in the Series:

Apology for Raymond Sebond, Raymond Sebond, To Philosophize Is to Learn How to Die, On Schoolmaster’s Learning, On Practice, On the Armor of the Parthians, On Cato the Younger, On Democritus and Heraclitus, On the Vanity of words, On Books, On the Power of the Imagination, 

Schedule:

12:00-2:00PM PDT

 

Tutor

Walter Sterling

Location

Online. Register to receive the link. 

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Online Seminar Series

Anguish and the Absurd - Part VIII
The Master and Margarita (in four parts)
by Mikhail Bulgakov

Saturday, May 15, 2021

This series will explore the troubling world of the absurd through the writings of Kafka, Gogol, Camus, Sartre, Borges, Beckett, Bulgakov, and others.

May 15 Reading:

Book Two, Chapters 26-32 (end)

Schedule:

10:00AM-12:00PM PDT

 

Tutors

Paul Herder and Andy Gilman

Location

Online. Register to receive the link. 

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Online Seminar Series - POSTPONED
Epistemology - Part XI -

Meditations by Descartes, continued

Future date to be anounced

What can we say we know with certainty? What does it mean to say that we know something? How do we know that we know? How does knowledge differ from belief? This series will include works from Plato, Aristotle, Empiricus, Descartes, Hume, Nietzsche, Russell, Popper, and others. These three seminars on Descartes’ Meditations on First Philosophy will include John Cottingham’s selection from the seven sets of “Objections and Replies,” which accompanied the Meditations’ original publication. 

Next Reading:

Fourth and Fifth Meditations, and selected Objections and Replies:

pp. 42-56 and 113-135 (in the second Cambridge edition)

Schedule:

12:00-2:00PM PDT

 

Tutor

Carol Seferi

Location

Online. Register to receive the link. 

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Online Seminar Series

Is Natural Law Real?

Saturday, August 20, 2022

The term natural law is a little hazy. Is natural law simply a more authoritative version of positive law? And if that is true, how might we understand how the founders of the American republic came to believe in the proposition that we are all endowed with certain inalienable rights which are self-evident truths? Conversely, does science and civil law show us that there are no natural laws, rather only values?

If natural law is real is it grounded in the metaphysical or in something else? How do we reconcile the problems of the is and ought, skepticism, positivism, notions of right and wrong, teleology, scientism, the connection between virtue and happiness, and human dignity.

 

We invite you to join us as we attempt to clarify what natural law means. We will read and discuss works by Sophocles, Heraclitus, Protagoras, Thrasymachus (in Plato), Aristotle, Cicero, St. Augustine, Aquinas, Hobbes, Locke, the American founders, C.S. Lewis, Martin Luther King Jr, as well as the The U.N. Declaration of Human Rights, among other works. 

Reading for August 20:

Selections from Cicero - On the Republic Bk3; P 32-43 and Bk6; P 9-29, and 

On the Laws Bk1; P 22-63 and Bk2; P 7-13.

Oxford University Press; Reissue edition (July 2009)

ISBN - 978-0199540112 (or Kindle version)

Alternate versions: 

(1) Cambridge University Press; 2nd edition (May 2017) - ISBN - 978-1316505564

(2) Cambridge University Press (December 1999) - ISBN - 978-0521459594

Schedule:

12:00-2:00PM PDT

 

Tutor

Carl Bobkoski

Location

Online. Register to receive the link. 

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Online Seminar Series
Epistemology - Part VII -

Posterior Analytics (Book 1, Chapters 1-4) by Aristotle

Saturday, October 2, 2021

What can we say we know with certainty? What does it mean to say that we know something? How do we know what we know? How does knowledge differ from belief? This series will include works from Plato, Aristotle, Empiricus, Descartes, Hume, Nietzsche, Russell, Popper, and others. 

Schedule:

12:00-2:00PM PDT

 

Tutor

Carol Seferi

Location

Online. Register to receive the link. 

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Online Seminar Series

Is Natural Law Real? - Part II

Saturday, October 23, 2021

The term natural law is a little hazy. Is natural law simply a more authoritative version of positive law? And if that is true, how might we understand how the founders of the American republic came to believe in the proposition that we are all endowed with certain inalienable rights which are self-evident truths? Conversely, does science and civil law show us that there are no natural laws, rather only values?

If natural law is real is it grounded in the metaphysical or in something else? How do we reconcile the problems of the is and ought, skepticism, positivism, notions of right and wrong, teleology, scientism, the connection between virtue and happiness, and human dignity.

 

We invite you to join us as we attempt to clarify what natural law means. We will read and discuss works by Sophocles, Heraclitus, Protagoras, Thrasymachus (in Plato), Aristotle, Cicero, St. Augustine, Aquinas, Hobbes, Locke, the American founders, C.S. Lewis, Martin Luther King Jr, as well as the The U.N. Declaration of Human Rights, among other works. 

Reading for Saturday, October 23:

Selections from Heraclitus, Protagoras, and Plato’s Theaetetus

Schedule:

12:00-2:00PM PDT

 

Tutor

Carl Bobkoski

Location

Online. Register to receive the link. 

Online Seminar Series

Love - Selections from Thomas Aquinas - Part III

Saturday, August 29, 2020 

Othello said about himself that he “loved not wisely but too well.” It seems that one can love things too much, but can one really love someone too much? Does the answer to that question depend on what is meant by love? Perhaps more fundamentally: are there different kinds of love? This series will devote itself to a discussion of the mystery and majesty of love.

​Schedule:
12:00-2:00PM PST

 

Readings in the Series:

Plato, Symposium

Aristotle, Nicomachean Ethics (Bk. 8 and 9 edited)

Aquinas, Selections

Augustine, Sermon on Love
Dostoevsky, A Gentle Creature
Ibsen, A Doll’s House
Shakespeare, Othello
Sigrid Unset, Gunnar’s Daughter
Flannery O’Connor, The Lame Shall Enter First
C.S. Lewis, Four Loves

Tutor:
Paul O'Reilly

Location:
Online. Register to receive the link.

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Online Seminar Series

Oceans and Underworld, Part III
Aristophanes - The Frogs

Saturday, September 12, 2020 

What mysteries are hidden underwater and deep in the underworld? Will one who explores these realms discover ancestors, gods, monsters,... or even oneself? This series will consider the ocean and the underworld as depicted in these classic literary texts.

Future Readings in the Series:
Lucian, A True Story
Virgil, Aeneid - Books 3, 4, 5, 6
Cervantes, Don Quixote - The Cave of Montesinos
Dante, Inferno (selections)
Shakespeare, The Tempest
Melville, Moby Dick (selections)
Gabriel Garcia Marquez, The Handsomest Drowned Man in the World
T.S. Eliot, The Wasteland

Schedule:

12:00-2:00PM PDT

 

Tutor

Elizabeth Reyes

Location

Online. Register to receive the link. 

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Online Seminar Series

Le Morte d'Arthur - by Thomas Malory - Book Four

Saturday, June 19, 2021

"In the midst of the lake Arthur was ware of an arm clothed in white samite, that held a fair sword in that hand." Join us as we move through these 15th century prose tales of King Arthur, Guinevere, Lancelot, Merlin and the Knights of the Round Table.

Schedule:

12:30-2:30PM PDT

 

Tutor

Zoe Appleby

Location

Online. Register to receive the link. 

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Online Seminar Series
I and Thou by Martin Buber - Part IV

Sunday, May 1, 2022

Published in 1923, I and Thou (German Ich und Du) cemented Martin Buber’s already substantive reputation in Weimar Germany, and, following its first 1937 translation, in the English philosophic, theologic and psychological circles. Yet for all its popularity, and Martin Buber’s eminence in those circles and Jewish intellectual circles, the text remains elusive, poetic, and peculiar. We take for granted Buber’s arguments for “dialogic” relationships, but in knowing the name of the text, we often miss the path he illumines in the forest of words we speak.

As Jorge Luis Borges commented, “….I remember reading, some thirty years ago, the works of Martin Buber — I thought of them as being wonderful poems. Then, when I went to Buenos Aires, I read a book by a friend of mine, Dujovne, and I found in its pages, much to my astonishment, that Martin Buber was a philosopher and that all his philosophy lay in the books I had read as poetry. Perhaps I had accepted those books because they came to me through poetry, through suggestion, through the music of poetry, and not as arguments…”

 

No Jewish thinker has had as much broad influence in philosophy, theology, and psychology in the West in the 20th more than Martin Buber.  His seminal work, I and Thou, supplies a commonly-used tag line, yet is thick and difficult to read, so much so that his translator notes…”Buber’s delight in language get between him and his readers…”  

 

What is the nature of the dialogue Buber encourages us to seek?  How carefully must we tread in such dialogue, and what words abet or hinder?  Does Buber suggest to us a “larger picture” than the simply “dialogic” that seems to have reduced a powerful title into a commonplace phrase? We invite you to join us for three seminars in this series, each two weeks apart.

 

May 1 reading :

I and Thou - Third Part by Buber

Schedule:

12:00-2:00PM PDT

 

Tutor

Dennis Gura

Location

Online. Register to receive the link. 

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Online Seminar Series

The History Plays of Shakespeare - King John

Sunday, October 24, 2021

“What surety of the world, what hope, what stay,
When this was now a king, and now is clay?”

Reading for Sunday, October 24:

King John by William Shakespeare

Schedule:

12:00-2:00PM PDT

 

Tutor

Eric Stull

Location

Online. Register to receive the link. 

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Online Seminar Series

Dialogues Concerning the Two Chief World Systems
by Galileo - Continued

Sunday, September 5, 2021

"The centre of the Celestial conversions of the five planets Saturn, Jupiter, Mars, Venus and Mercury, is the Sun; and shall be likewise the centre of the motion of the Earth, if we do but succeed in our attempt of placing it in Hea­ven."

Reading: 

Second Day pp.190-219 bottom; pp.241-248; pp. 256-end.

Third Day pp.276-280; pp. 318-399.

Schedule:

12:00-2:00PM PDT

 

Tutor

Larry Shields

Location

Online. Register to receive the link. 

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Online Seminar Series

Ocean and Underworld - 
Paradiso by Dante - Part One

Saturday, September 11, 2021

What mysteries are hidden underwater and deep in the underworld? Will one who explores these realms discover ancestors, gods, monsters,... or even oneself? This series will consider the ocean and the underworld as depicted in these classic literary texts.

September 11 reading:
Dante, Paradiso - Cantos 1-16

Future Readings in the Series:

Cervantes, Don Quixote - The Cave of Montesinos
Shakespeare, The Tempest
Melville, Moby Dick (selections)
Gabriel Garcia Marquez, The Handsomest Drowned Man in the World
T.S. Eliot, The Wasteland

Schedule:

12:30-2:30PM PDT (please note later time)

Tutor:

Elizabeth Reyes

Location:

Online. Register to receive the link.

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Special Onsite Seminar and Play Performance
Hamlet by William Shakespeare

Antaeus Theatre in Glendale, California

Saturday, June 4, 2022

Hamlet is considered among the most powerful and influential works of world literature, with a story capable of seemingly endless retelling and adaptation. It was one of Shakespeare's most popular works during his lifetime and still ranks among his most performed. Join us as we discuss the play in the morning, have lunch, and see the play performed at Antaeus Theatre in Glendale, California. The seminar fee is $125, which includes the mailed book, continental breakfast, lunch, and theatre admission. Scholarships are available for LA County high school teachers. Antaeus requires proof of full vaccination to enter the building. Masks must also be worn at all times inside the building.

Schedule:

10:00AM - Continental Breakfast

10:30AM - 12:30PM - Seminar

12:30-2:00PM - Lunch

2:00-5:00 - Play Performance

5:00-5:30 - Closing Discussion with Artists

Tutor

Elizabeth Reyes

Location

Antaeus Theatre - 110 East Broadway in Glendale, California

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Online Seminar Series

Shakespeare and Plutarch: Roman Plays, Roman Lives

Sunday, June 12, 2022

Although more than four of Shakespeare’s plays are set in Roman times, four are set either in Rome itself or wherever large events, the results of forces variously centrifugal and centripetal, decided the fate of Roman power at any given moment.   Three of his plays take place in the historical hurly-burly of the Roman Republic, over a nearly 500-year period from its early days to its smashing collapse a few decades before the Christian era. One of these three, Coriolanus, is set in early Republican Rome; the other two, Julius Caesar and Antony and Cleopatra, at the end of it.  The other of the four, Titus Andronicus, is set in a shadowy, largely fictional world of late Imperial Rome, in a time that would have been, chronologically, long after the other three. Titus, set the latest, nevertheless appears to be the first Roman play Shakespeare wrote, and is the least accomplished as a work of art. The three mostly historical plays draw their material directly from Plutarch’s Lives, that biographical treasury of the ancient world; Titus, unsurprisingly, does not – indeed, could not. To read these four plays, interspersed with the corresponding Roman lives to be found in Plutarch preceding each play in turn, may afford an illuminating perspective on some fascinating Romans and the ways in which they have come down to us.  Except for Titus, which, though chronologically last, will be read first, the reading of the lives and plays will circle back after Titus to the early Republic to follow the historical chronology of the stories they tell.  Thus, the seven seminars (four on Shakespeare, three on Plutarch) in the series: Titus Andronicus, Plutarch’s Life of Coriolanus, Coriolanus, Plutarch’s Lives of Caesar and Brutus, Julius Caesar, Plutarch’s Life of Antony, Antony and Cleopatra.

June 12 Reading:

Titus Andronicus by William Shakespeare

Schedule:

12:00-2:00PM PDT

 

Tutor

Eric Stull

Location

Online. Register to receive the link. 

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Online Seminar Series

Shakespeare and Plutarch: Roman Plays, Roman Lives

REVISED DATE - Saturday, August 27, 2022

Although more than four of Shakespeare’s plays are set in Roman times, four are set either in Rome itself or wherever large events, the results of forces variously centrifugal and centripetal, decided the fate of Roman power at any given moment.   Three of his plays take place in the historical hurly-burly of the Roman Republic, over a nearly 500-year period from its early days to its smashing collapse a few decades before the Christian era. One of these three, Coriolanus, is set in early Republican Rome; the other two, Julius Caesar and Antony and Cleopatra, at the end of it.  The other of the four, Titus Andronicus, is set in a shadowy, largely fictional world of late Imperial Rome, in a time that would have been, chronologically, long after the other three. Titus, set the latest, nevertheless appears to be the first Roman play Shakespeare wrote, and is the least accomplished as a work of art. The three mostly historical plays draw their material directly from Plutarch’s Lives, that biographical treasury of the ancient world; Titus, unsurprisingly, does not – indeed, could not. To read these four plays, interspersed with the corresponding Roman lives to be found in Plutarch preceding each play in turn, may afford an illuminating perspective on some fascinating Romans and the ways in which they have come down to us.  Except for Titus, which, though chronologically last, will be read first, the reading of the lives and plays will circle back after Titus to the early Republic to follow the historical chronology of the stories they tell.  Thus, the seven seminars (four on Shakespeare, three on Plutarch) in the series: Titus Andronicus, Plutarch’s Life of Coriolanus, Coriolanus, Plutarch’s Lives of Caesar and Brutus, Julius Caesar, Plutarch’s Life of Antony, Antony and Cleopatra.

August 27 Reading:

Coriolanus by Shakespeare
Penguin Classics (April 2018) - ISBN 978-0143132271

Schedule:

12:00-2:00PM PDT

 

Tutor

Eric Stull

Location

Online. Register to receive the link. 

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Online Seminar Series

An Introduction to Martin Heidegger - Part Six

Sunday, June 26, 2022

This series of seminars is intended to serve as an introduction to the thought of Martin Heidegger. It will involve the reading of Heidegger speeches from the 1930s, a period of time that saw Heidegger become a supporter of National Socialism in Germany. A controversial figure in philosophical and political terms, he has been called the most influential, “greatest thinker” of the 20th Century. In addition to his speeches, we will read his post-war publication, The Question Concerning Technology and selected lectures found in What Is Called Thinking?

June 26 Reading:

What is Called Thinking by Martin Heidegger
Harper Perennial; Reprint edition (March 1976), ISBN  006090528X

Lectures IV, V, and X in Part 2

Schedule:

12:00-2:00PM PDT

 

Tutor

Karl Haigler

Location

Online. Register to receive the link. 

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Online Seminar Series

Is Natural Law Real? - Part III

Saturday, January 8, 2022

The term natural law is a little hazy. Is natural law simply a more authoritative version of positive law? And if that is true, how might we understand how the founders of the American republic came to believe in the proposition that we are all endowed with certain inalienable rights which are self-evident truths? Conversely, does science and civil law show us that there are no natural laws, rather only values?

If natural law is real is it grounded in the metaphysical or in something else? How do we reconcile the problems of the is and ought, skepticism, positivism, notions of right and wrong, teleology, scientism, the connection between virtue and happiness, and human dignity.

 

We invite you to join us as we attempt to clarify what natural law means. We will read and discuss works by Sophocles, Heraclitus, Protagoras, Thrasymachus (in Plato), Aristotle, Cicero, St. Augustine, Aquinas, Hobbes, Locke, the American founders, C.S. Lewis, Martin Luther King Jr, as well as the The U.N. Declaration of Human Rights, among other works. 

January 8 Reading:

Selections Plato's, Aquinas' Summa Theologiae, Hobbes' Leviathan, and Maritain's The Rights of Man and the Natural Law

Schedule:

12:00-2:00PM PST

 

Tutor

Carl Bobkoski

Location

Online. Register to receive the link. 

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Online Seminar Series

The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire
by Edward Gibbon - Chapters XXIV-XXXIX

Sunday, August 28, 2022

This six-volume work by the English historian Edward Gibbon traces Western civilization from the height of the Roman Empire to the fall of Byzantium in the fifteenth century. These texts cover the history, from 98 to 1,590AD, of the Roman Empire, the history of early Christianity and then of the Roman Church, and the general history of Europe. According to the author, the Roman Empire succumbed to barbarian invasions in large part due to the gradual loss of civic virtue among its citizens. We invite you to join this series as we explore this influential text in monthly online seminars, exploring a few chapters at a time.

Click here to visit the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire Online Seminar page, with links to media and the Discussion Forum.

August 28 Reading: 

The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire by Edward Gibbon - Penguin Classics; Abridged edition (January 2001) - ISBN 0140437649

Chapters XXIV-XXXIX, and General Observations (Pages 361- 445)

Schedule:

12:00-2:00PM PDT

 

Tutor

David Appleby

Location

Online. Register to receive the link. 

Agora Foundation online Great Books Semi

Online Seminar Series

Ocean and Underworld -  
Selections from The Aeneid by Virgil

Saturday, January 30, 2021

What mysteries are hidden underwater and deep in the underworld? Will one who explores these realms discover ancestors, gods, monsters,... or even oneself? This series will consider the ocean and the underworld as depicted in these classic literary texts. 

January 30 reading:
Virgil, Aeneid - Books 3, 4, 5, 6

Future Readings in the Series:

Dante, Inferno (selections)

Cervantes, Don Quixote - The Cave of Montesinos
Shakespeare, The Tempest
Melville, Moby Dick (selections)
Gabriel Garcia Marquez, The Handsomest Drowned Man in the World
T.S. Eliot, The Wasteland

Schedule:

12:00-2:00PM PST

 

Tutor

Elizabeth Reyes

Location

Online. Register to receive the link. 

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EVENT POSTPONED

Online Seminar Series

The New Testament

(formerly Saturday, February 5, 2022)

The word testament in the expression New Testament refers to a new covenant that Christians believe fulfills the covenant that God made with the people of Israel made on Mount Sinai through Moses, described in the books of the Old Testament. We invite you to join this series as we explore the  four Gospels, the Acts of the Apostles, and Epistles, and the Book of Revelation. 

February 5 Reading: 

The Gospel of Matthew (attendees may use any translation they prefer)

Schedule:

12:00-2:00PM PST

 

Tutor

Paul O'Reilly

Location

Online. Register to receive the link. 

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Online Seminar Series
Epistemology - Part V -

Nicomachean Ethics - Book 6, Chapters 1-8 by Aristotle

Saturday, June 19, 2021

What can we say we know with certainty? What does it mean to say that we know something? How do we know that we know? How does knowledge differ from belief? This series will include works from Plato, Aristotle, Empiricus, Descartes, Hume, Nietzsche, Russell, Popper, and others. 

Schedule:

10:00AM-12:00PM PDT

 

Tutor

Carol Seferi

Location

Online. Register to receive the link. 

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Online Seminar Series

History Plays - Edward II by Christopher Marlowe

Sunday, January 9, 2022

"You must be proud, bold, pleasant, resolute,

And now and then stab as occasion serves."

Schedule:

12:00-2:00PM PST

 

Tutor

Eric Stull

Location

Online. Register to receive the link. 

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Online Seminar

Free Community Seminar Series

Eastern Classics
Next session Thursday, December 3, 2020

Like the west, the east has its own tradition of influential texts that address the perennial questions of human kind. Centering around the bodies of work from China, Japan, and India, this series will focus on the texts of Taoism, Confucius, Buddhism, and Hinduism. We invite you to join us. 

The December 3 reading is:
Bhagavad Gita - Chapter Eighteen

Click here to access the readings.

Schedule:
12:00 - 1:00PM PST

Location: 

Online. Click here. 

Meeting ID: 830 3917 1800

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Online Seminar Series
Epistemology - Part XI

Meditations by Descartes, continued

Sunday, July 10, 2022

What can we say we know with certainty? What does it mean to say that we know something? How do we know that we know? How does knowledge differ from belief? This series will include works from Plato, Aristotle, Empiricus, Descartes, Hume, Nietzsche, Russell, Popper, and others. These three seminars on Descartes’ Meditations on First Philosophy will include John Cottingham’s selection from the seven sets of “Objections and Replies,” which accompanied the Meditations’ original publication. 

July 10 Reading:

Meditations on First Philosophy by René Descartes - Cambridge University Press; 2nd edition (February 2017), ISBN 1107665736

Fourth and Fifth Meditations, and selected Objections and Replies:

pp. 42-56 and 113-135 (in the second Cambridge edition)

Schedule:

12:00-2:00PM PDT

 

Tutor

Carol Seferi

Location

Online. Register to receive the link.