Sunday, February 25, 2018

February 25, 2018

Time Lines give us a sobering view of human civilization and, in fact, can make a person very pessimistic.

If the time is extended back far enough, humankind disappears & we are looking at vast periods of time with their earthly & cosmic upheavals and we cannot help but think ahead a few thousand years to when man's brief presence on the earth is over & then, thousands of years more of earthly & cosmic upheavals onwards towards  apocalypse.

Very sobering.

JLS

Saturday, February 10, 2018

February 10, 2018

Initiation is a passage from one type of life to another type of life, and the movement is always presumed to be from a lower to a higher level.

However, there is no up or down in the universe & the spiritual voyager often finds himself in a hell rather than a heaven.

Consider Balberith, ex-princess of the heavenly Cherubim & now, after the Fall of Satan, high priestess & mistress of ceremonies in the infernal realms.

Balberith is spoken of as an evil demon, inciting men & women to murder.  But this is not so.

Balberith is an initiator; she oversees the transition as the human being moves from one type of life to the next. 

And Balberith, perhaps, will be with you if you summon her to protect & guide you on your quest. 


Not from this life to Hell, but from this life to Hell, then Heaven & and then whatever lies beyond.

JLS

Thursday, January 25, 2018

January 25, 2018

Creative Texts in Early American Literature: An English Language Arts Program

Introduction

Creative Texts in Early American Literature (CTEA) is the first program in a projected “Creative Texts” series of English Language Arts programs for online learning in the US public school systems.

Other programs in the series include: Creative Texts in Contemporary American Literature; Creative Texts in Hispanic Literature from the 1900’s to the Present; and Creative Texts in European Literature I & II.

The Creative Text programs are targeted towards High School students, in public & private academic institutions, at Grade Levels 10-11.

Overview of the Program

Students enrolled in CTEA will be required to read a wide range of Early American non-print texts. 

The texts include fictional prose (short stories, excerpts from novels), non-fictional prose (essays, articles, excerpts from longer works) and poetry.

The goals for students are:

(1) To build an understanding of the texts themselves in the context of the culture in which they
      were written.
(2) To understand the dimensions & nuances of the Early American experience at the periods 
      represented by the creative writers.
(3) To develop a sensitivity to the English Language itself; it’s evolving structure, style, conventions
      & possibilities as a tool for communication of ideas & images.
(4) To use their own developing language skills as they respond to & interact with the texts 
      under consideration.

FAQ for Parents

Q1: How does my student access the CTEA program?

A: Students log into the Creative Texts website (http:/www.creativetexts.com).  The log-in ID & Password will be provided by the school.  Once the student is on the site, she will access the Modules.  There are four Modules, one for each CT program.  CTEA is Module 1.   The student selects Module 1 and then follows the instructions for reading & responding to the texts. 
Classroom teachers will provide full instructions & hands-on instruction on how to use the CT program & modules in class.

NOTE: There are links to the CT website on the High School website & on the Michigan Board of Education website if the student or parent wishes to access CT from these locations. 

If the student is unable to access the CT website, or experiences any problems or difficulties with the software, please contact the High School Computer Lab Help Desk during regular school hours. The number is 1-517-888-7878.

Q2: Do students need to have home PCs, laptops or notebooks with Internet access?

A: No.  The CT activities will be done during the normal classroom times.  Students will work in the High School Computer Labs.  However, students have the option of bringing their own devices to the labs if they prefer.  This does not include smart phones and/or cell phones.

Q3: What texts will students be studying?

A: The period of Early American Literature comprises 1630 to the 1890’s.  The specific creative writers will be determined by a five-person panel, the members of which are literature instructors and other academics in related fields.

Examples of standard writers for this period include: Benjamin Franklin, Thomas Jefferson, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Henry David Thoreau, Edgar Allan Poe, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Herman Melville and Walt Whitman.

Q4:  My student is an ESL student and her competency in English is still in the developmental stage.  Will this be a problem?

A: No.  The CT program runs in conjunction with other software programs that are especially designed to aid ESL students & students with learning disabilities such as ADHD.  The Natural Reader resource (www.naturalreader.com), for example, is one of these options.  The Lingo Talking Translator (via Amazon), which can be used with a smart phone, is another option. 

The combination of the CT software & hand-held translation applications will ensure that ESL students are able to learn independently & efficiently.

Q5: Are there any costs or out-of-pocket expenses for parents or students?

A: No.  The CT programs & activities are part of the regular High School curriculum.

Q6: Much classroom work at the 10th & 11th grade levels seems to be focused on preparation for the SAT and/or ACT standardized tests.  Will the CT programs help my student become more prepared for taking these tests?

A: There is no direct link between the CTEA program and higher scores on the SAT or ACT tests.  However, CT students will generally improve their reading & writing skills and their increasing sensitivity to the written word will contribute at least indirectly to better performance on these tests.

Friday, January 12, 2018

January 12, 2018

Technology is not transformative; it will be someday, but it just isn't yet.

Transformation involves changing perception, cognition & mental acuity, and  particularly, it involves gnosis.

But our  current technologies are not compatible with these activities.

Technology, by itself, cannot transform anyone, and usually, when technology is involved, perception, cognition, etc. tend to atrophy.

This is why we see so many young people walking around addicted to their phones & their devices, feeding entertainment & social data into their brains.

This constant barrage tends to weaken the brain.

Their faces, in fact,  look like the faces of extras in an episode of The Walking Dead.  They don't  seem to be thinking.  They seem to be reacting only to stimuli as a zombie might.

JLS

Saturday, January 6, 2018

January 7, 2018

This is a glog that I created recently: “Multi Media in the Classroom: The Light and the Dark"

The glog contrasts, in images, the light-side and the dark-side of modern technology in education.

This is a topic I am interested in- I am finishing up a third Masters Degree in online education and will shortly be attending the University of Michigan for my PhD in this field.

Please take a look.

JLS

http://occultist.edu.glogster.com/multi-media-in-the-classroom-the-light-and-the-dark

Sunday, December 31, 2017

December 31, 2017

Happy New Year!

Here is my interview on Dead Air Paranormal with Andrea Perron & George Lopez.

 A snowy evening & illuminating insights!

Make good resolutions for 2018!  Be positive, creative and keep moving forward!

JLS

Friday, December 8, 2017

December 9, 2017

If you haven't  noticed, western occultism is at cross-roads.

There are the traditionalists, who keep pushing off on potential initiates the same tired, rather silly talking-points about the Hermetic Principles: mentalism; the principle of correspondences; the theory of polarity; the law of synchronicity; the law of symbolism; the law of this or that.

Pure sophistry.

Magick is change in perception; nothing more and nothing less.

Authors like Christopher Penczak, in The Inner Temple of Witchcraft,  think that they are serving the cause by rehashing the Hermetic points and sprinkling in a few points about contemporary scientific theory & quantum physics into the mix.

They all seem to understand one basic scientific talking point: wave vs. particle.  But nothing else.

Quantum physics is not about waves or particles at all, at least not theoretically.

It is about magick.  And magick is, as I said, change in perception.

My daughter & I put together a presentation that will explain things a bit further.  "H. P. Lovecraft's Cosmic Carnival of Horror."  Take a look & a listen if you haven't already.

JLS