SOCIETY FOR THE STUDY OF METAPHYSICAL RELIGION

Uniting popular and academic metaphysics and other disciplines

SSMR REGIONAL CONFERENCE, Tampa, FL, Oct. 24-25, 2003, on "The Metaphysical Movement and its Traditions," registration form here. The seventh annual regional meeting of the SSMR will be held Oct. 24 and 25 at the Embassy Suites Hotel (813-977-7066) on the campus of the University of South Florida: From I-275 traveling north (from Tampa International Airport) or traveling south, exit on number 51 (old exit 34) Fowler Ave. Travel east 2 miles. Hotel is on the left after the intersection of Fowler and 30th street. From I-75 traveling north (from Sarasota/Ft. Myers/Naples) or traveling south (from Gainesville/Ocala) to exit 265 (old exit 54) Fowler Ave. Travel west 4 miles. Hotel is on the right after the main entrance to University of South Florida. From Orlando take I-4 West to I-75 North and exit 265 (old exit 54) Fowler Avenue and follow directions above. Conference organizer Dell deChant notes,"In addition to Embassy Suites, there are other chain hotels in the vicinity. You may desire to contact other hotel chains to compare rates. There is a La Quinta Inn directly across the street, which may have lower rates. If contacting national offices for nearest location to the site, use the University of South Florida (Tampa campus) or Busch Gardens as location references. Busch Gardens is about two miles south of the site." The practically final schedule for the conference follows: Theme: The Metaphysical Tradition and its Movements For the registration form, click here.

Fri., Oct 24, 2003
2:00-3:00 Registration
3:00-3:15 Welcome and Introduction
3:15-4:00 Robert Winterhalter: "Malinda E. Cramer, Divine Science Founder: Her Quaker Background, Development, and Illumination."
4:15-5:00 Christina Hendrick Croft: "The History of Unity: Issues in Theological History and Critical History"
5:15-6:00 SSMR Board Meeting: All SSMR members invited to attend
6:15-7:00 Frank Ferreri: "The Ascent of the Masters: Permutations in the Role and Function of Masters in Theosophy, the I AM Activity, and Church Universal and Triumphant"
7:00 Dinner on your own -or- Emma Curtis Hopkins College and Theological Seminary Reunion & Dinner (contact Charlie Wilde, [7271458-9455 or charliewilde1@aol.com])

Saturday, Oct. 25 10:00-11:00 Registration
11:00-11:15 Welcome and Introduction
12:15-12:45 What is SSMR?: Where We Came From, Where We Have Been, Where We Are Going 1:00-2:00 Lunch (on your own) 12.15-12:45 Deb Whitehouse-"New Thought and Common Sense"
1:00-2:00 Lunch (on your own)
2:15-3:00 Panel Discussion: "Reconsidering Metaphysical Religions and Religion: Questions in definition, boundaries,horizons, foundations" Panelists: Alan Anderson, Dell deChant, Temple Richmond, and Robert Winterhalter
3:00-3:45 Temple Richmond: "Elements of New Age Spirituality in the Harry Potter Series by J.K. Rowling"
4:00-4:45 Jessy Carter: "The Novels of Philip K. Dick: Mainstreaming Gnosticism in the Postmodern World"
Saturday 10:00-11:00 Registration 11:00-11:15 Welcome and Introduction 15.15-12:00 Deb Whitehouse-"New Thought and Common Sense" 12:15-3:00 What is SSMR?: Where We Came From, Where We Have Been, Where We Are Going 1:00-2:00 Lunch (on your own) 2:15-3:00-.----'Panel Discussion: "Reconsidering Metaphysical Religions and Religion: Questions in definition, boundaries,horizons, foundations" Panelists: Alan Anderson, Dell deChant, Temple Richmond, and Robert Winterhalter 3:00-3:45 Temple Richmond: "Elements of New Age Spirituality in the Harry Potter Series by J.K. Rowling" 4:00-4:45 Jessy Carter: "The Novels of Philip K. Dick: Mainstreaming Gnosticism in the Postmodern World"
5:00-6:00 Dell deChant: "The Sacred Santa and Metaphysical Religions: Towards a Postmodern Theology of Culture" (followed by book signing of deChant's The Saared Santabook signing and reception) (followed by The Sacred Santa book signing and reception) 6:00-7:00 Dinner
7:00-8:00 Keynote Address by Gail M. Harley, author of Emma Curtis Hopkins: Forgotten Founder of New Thought


Guide to SSMR Bylaws, officers, and committees

The SSMR was formed in the mid to late 1980s, largely by people associated with the delivery of certain academic papers at meetings of the American Academy of Religion. (history here.) These papers related to the New Thought movement, a philosophical-religious outlook and collection of practices that began in the nineteenth-century United States. The "Father of New Thought" was Phineas Parkhurst Quimby, a Maine clockmaker who practiced mesmerism and later moved beyond it in developing a form of spiritual healing. Among his patients and students were former Methodist minister and Swedenborgian lay leader Warren Felt Evans, who wrote the first books in the field, and Mary Baker Eddy, who later developed Christian Science. A one-time Eddy associate, Emma Curtis Hopkins, founded the first New Thought school and taught founders of the New Thought groups known as Divine Science, Unity, and Religious Science (Science of Mind).

NEW THOUGHT MOVEMENT

New Thought is to be distinguished from New Age, which it preceded by many decades and which it helped to produce. Both outlooks emphasize nontraditional healing and transformation of individuals and the world; but New Thought does not concern itself with occultism, herbs, crystals, body work, and similar accoutrements of New Age. New Thought emphasizes the practice of the presence of God for practical purposes. New Thought themes are found in teachings of Norman Vincent Peale and Robert Schuller, as well as Alcoholics Anonymous and much success literature. Among the more popular earlier writers in New Thought were Horatio W. Dresser and Henry Wood (both cited favorably by William James in The Varieties of Religious Experience), Charles Fillmore, H. Emilie Cady, Ralph Waldo Trine, Elizabeth Towne, Florence Scovel Shinn, Ernest Holmes, Joseph Murphy, and Emmet Fox. The writings of Emerson long have been read widely by New Thoughters, and one could well think of New Thought as a practically-applied Transcendentalism.

SSMR CONCERNS

The Society is concerned with metaphysics both in its traditional philosophical meaning (the study of the basic nature of all reality) and in its popular meaning (whatever is beyond the physical). Sometimes New Thought and other groups that emphasize the power of mind and the reality of more than the physical world are called metaphysics and their practitioners metaphysicians. Any group--whether esoteric, theosophical, New Age, or Christian Science--with such emphases would come within the purview of the Society, but thus far its attention has been concentrated on the New Thought movement, and its annual meetings have been held in conjunction with the annual Expos of the International New Thought Alliance.

MEMBERSHIP

Dell deChant
Society for the Study of Metaphysical Religion
P.O. Box 37
New Port Richey, FL 34656-0037
Checks should be payable to SSMR/U-P.C.
ddechant@luna.cas.usf.edu

Yearly membership, including subscription to The Journal of the Society for the Study of Metaphysical Religion.
Academic/Religious Professional US $35
Associate US $25
Student US $15
Group US $75
Yearly subscription to the Journal alone US $25 per year

SSMR REGIONAL CONFERENCE

SSMR Regional Conference, on "The Metaphysical Tradition and its Movements," co-sponsored by the Institute for the Study of American Religion,(details to be posted here as they become available) will be held October 24 and 25, 2003, at Embassy Suites Hotel, on the campus of the University of South Florida in Tampa. Registration form, in PDF, here. >

For information on some of the SSMR conferences already held, click here.

For photographs and recordings of presentations at the July 25, 2002, SSMR session on P. P. Quimby, in recognition of the bicentenial of his birth, click here.

For a complete set of audio tapes of six speakers of the SSMR session on "New Thought in relation to other reliious traditions," presented at the International New Thought Alliance Congress in Paradise Valley on July 24, 2003, buy tapesPV-38 a, b, and c, for $8.00 per tape for INTA members and $8.50 for non-members of INTA (plus 80 cents [$1.00 foreign] per tape. From International New Thought Alliance, 5003 East Broadway Rd., Mesa, AZ 85206.

AUTOMATED MAILING LIST

Anyone can join the free automated mailing list discussion group sponsored by the SSMR. You do not have to be a member of the Society for the Study of Metaphysical Religion to join the mailing list. There are Archives of the list, available to anyone. This email list was intended for people interested in intellectual topics related to New Thought and similar outlooks. However, it has assumed a more popular nature.

Guide to SSMR Bylaws, officers, and committees
New Thought Movement Home Page.
Voice of Shuttle humanities research
Boston University Religion and Philosophy Resources
A Guide to the Best Religious Studies Resources on the Internet
Finding God in Cyberspace
American Academy of Religion
Society of Biblical Literature
The Electronically Linked Academy (Scholars Press)
American Philosophical Association
Suber philosophy links


Created on behalf of SSMR
October 3, 1995
by Alan Anderson (see neweverymoment.com)
Phone: (727) 934-2585

URL of this page: http://websyte.com/alan/ssmr.htm

Latest update Oct. 17, 2003

Visits since April 27, 1996