Dear Friends,

The Board of Directors of the Krotona Institute of Theosophy has cancelled Krotona School classes and closed the Library, Bookshop and Hall through the month of May. This action was taken to protect the health of faculty, students, guests and Krotona residents, by limiting the transmission and spread of corona virus Covid 19.

The Institute’s Information, library, school and business office email, phone and fax lines remain open. USPS and other delivery services will be received, unless future gov’t restrictions apply. Accommodation deposits will be returned.

Fall classes will be listed on our website, the school’s fall brochure will be mailed soon, and planning has begun for winter-spring 2021. Other Krotona services and programs will resume after the emergency has passed. We appreciate your understanding and wish you and your loved ones strength and well-being, as we move through this global health challenge together.


Guru D. Prasad, Resident Head
Maria Parisen, Director, Krotona School
Mary Jo Kokochak, Director, Krotona Library and Research Center
Carol Nicholson, Manager, Krotona Bookshop
Michele Sender, Manager, Krotona Guesthouse

Programs Calendar

List of Programs

February 7, 2020
  • Explorations in the Back of Beyond

    Phil Cousineau

    February 7 – 9
    Friday 7:30 – 9 pm, Saturday 10 – noon, 2 – 4 pm
    Sunday 10 – noon

    One of the perennial spiritual questions is how to gain a direct encounter of the sacred, and then to glean wisdom from our new–found knowledge and experience. This weekend’s lecture and workshops offer three avenues for such exploration: art, beauty, and pilgrimage. Each presentation will be a vigorous call to the soul’s highest adventure, as well as a challenge for us to create an artifact, such as a story, a poem, a play, a painting, a dance, which can help reanimate our world. Our guides on this journey will be the transformational teachings of Sappho, Homer, Ficino, Dante, Willa Cather, Rilke, Emily Dickinson, Francis Yates, WB Yeats and Lady Gregory, and Terrence Malick. Series $50, Single session $15

    Phil Cousineau is a freelance writer, documentary filmmaker, independent scholar, and creativity consultant. He has published over 40 books, including The Hero’s Journey: The Life and Work of Joseph Campbell, The Art of Pilgrimage, and A Seat at the Table, with Huston Smith. Cousineau has also written or co-written over twenty documentary films, including the Oscar-nominated Forever Activists: Stories from the Abraham Lincoln Brigade. Since 2009, Cousineau has been host and co-writer of “Global Spirit,” which airs on PBS and LINK TV.

February 14, 2020
  • Bowing Down to the Mystery of Life: Surrender in Islam

    Bridget Blomfield

    February 14 – 16
    Friday 7:30 – 9 pm, Saturday 10 – noon, 2 – 4 pm, Sunday 10 – noon

    In Islam the concept of surrender to the will of God is powerful and challenging. Surrender commits the practioner to a tender sense of inquiry, a deep and holy listening. Thus surrender, bowing down to the mystery of life, the mystery of what it is to be human, requires the stillness of mind, a radiant heart and the spaciousness of being, inviting uns, the intimacy and self-disclosure of God. This intimate aware- ness of the divine creates a conscious conduct and is a reflection of an inner state expressing a longing for relatedness. Such relatedness requires us to listen on multiple levels to the will of God and to each other. Our distractions, that keep us from such a tender listening, can be redirected simply and humbly by reentering and surrendering breath by breath. As we polish our hearts we become the lamp within the glass as if it were a pearly white star … light upon light. Series $50, Single session $15

    Bridget Blomfield is a retired professor of Islamic Studies. She has published multiple articles in aca- demic journals about Muslim women and published The Language of Tears: My Journey into the World of Shi’i Muslim Women. Dr Blomfield has spoken at countless conferences, churches and universities about Shi’ism and Sufism and leads movement and meditation workshops. Some of the countries she has taught in are: Iran, Turkey, India, and Morroco. Dr Blomfield has led university-sponsored travel abroad programs, taking students to predominantly Muslim countries to study religion and culture. A practicing Sufi, she hopes to help people integrate mind, heart, and body.

February 28, 2020
  • The Hidden Side of Life

    Robert, Gracia Fay, and Richard Ellwood

    February 28 – March 1

    Friday 7:30 – 9 pm, Saturday 10 – noon, 2 – 4 pm, Sunday 10 – noon]

    The visible world we see around us is only the proverbial tip of the iceberg. There is much more out there than seems hidden, but which supports the visible, guides its evolution, can impinge on our lives in many ways, and is the context of life beyond the transition called death. We will look at four aspects of the other side: thought-forms around us and devic spirits in Nature; the theosophical view of the after-life, including the astral plane and devachan; the message of near-death experiences in a discussion led by Gracia Fay based on her extensive research and writing in this area; and the recently much-discussed feelings and language of plants interpreted by Richard with the help of a new device that turns plant-energies into music. Series $50, Single session $15.

    Robert Ellwood, PhD, is emeritus professor of religion at the University of Southern California. He has served as vice president of the Theosophical Society in America, as director of the School of the Wisdom at the TS International headquarters in Chennai, India, and has presented internationally for the Society. Robert has published widely and authored several books on comparative religion and theosophy.

    Richard Ellwood is a Krotona resident and director of technology of Besant Hill School in Ojai. Formerly, he worked as a computer programmer for the Theosophical Society at its Wheaton, Illinois headquarters. Richard currently maintains our website and other technology projects for Krotona.

    Gracia Fay Ellwood, PhD in Philosophy of Religion from Claremont Graduate University, has experience as a teacher of English and religious studies at the university level. She is the author of books on psychical research and near-death experiences. She now primarily devotes her energies to editing The Peaceable Table, an online journal, devoted to spiritual aspects of vegetarianism and animal concerns. Her book Taking the Adventure consists of essays by Gracia Fay from this online journal. She lives in Krotona with her spouse, Robert, and three cats.

March 10, 2020
  • Opening the Intuitive Gate: Keys to Developing Your Intuition


    Will Tuttle
    Four Mornings

    March 10 – 13

    Tuesday – Friday,10 am – noon

    Intuition is the deep knowing that comes from our inner wisdom, bringing insight, healing, spiritual awareness, and creative breakthroughs. Dr. Tuttle discuss how intuition operates in our daily lives, and also share exercises that use imagery, music, art, and meditation to help each of us connect more deeply with our own unique way of accessing our inner intuitive wisdom. Sharing techniques and insights from his doctoral research at U.C. Berkeley, he will also present seven practical methods for cultivating intuition. Will’s spouse, Madeleine, a visionary artist and Waldorf educator from Switzerland, will assist in the workshop. Series $50, Single session $15

    Will Tuttle, PhD,author, educator, and inspirational speaker, has presented world wide at college campuses, spiritual centers, conferences, and peace,social justice, animal protection, health, and environmental gatherings. A member of the Theosophical Society since 1977, he is the author of Your Inner Islands: The Keys to Intuitive Living,The World Peace Diet (published in 16 languages), Buddhism and Veganism, and editor of Circles of Compassion:Issues of Justice. A vegan since 1980 and former Zen monk, Dr. Tuttle has created online wellness and advocacy programs and is featured in several documentaries. A noted composer and pianist with many concert and meditation CD’s, he has performed also internationally promoting peace and cultural healing.

March 17, 2020
  • The Transformational Teachings of the Christ

    Ravi Ravindra

    March 17 – 20, 24 – 27, Tuesday – Friday, 10 – noon
    March 31 – April 2, Tuesday – Thursday, 10 – noon

    The spiritual teaching of Christ, like other serious teachings, calls for a radical transformation of our whole being, amounting to a new birth, born of the Spirit. As the Gospel of Phillip says, Christ came not to make us Christians but to make us Christ. In order for us to realize the inner Christ, what is required is freedom not for myself, but from myself. For the sake of this spiritual awakening what is needed is an impartial and deep self-inquiry and a baptism of fire and spirit, leading to sacrifice. The discipline taught by the Christ, like all other transformational teachings, is not easy to practice. But only those who practice the discipline can be regarded as his disciples. As Christ himself said, “He who is near me is near the fire; he who is far from me is far from the Kingdom.” (Gospel of Thomas) Series $138, Single session $15

    Ravi Ravindra, PhD, is professor emeritus at Dalhousie University, Halifax, Canada, where he taught in the departments of physics, philosophy, and comparative religion. He has authored many essays and academic papers in these areas and several books, including Pilgrim Soul; The Gospel of John in the Light of Indian Mysticism; Science and the Sacred; The Wisdom of Patanjali’s Yoga Sutras, and The Bhagavad Gita: A Guide to Navigating the Battle of Life.

March 27, 2020
  • Science and Spirituality: Truth, Beauty, and Order in Nature

    Munju Ravindra and Ravi Ravindra

    March 27 – 28

    Friday 7:30 – 9 pm, Saturday 10 – noon and 2 – 4 pm

    This workshop offers practical exercises, philosophical presentations, and group discussion to help participants understand their relationship with Nature. Especially we will explore the similarities and differences in the nature of Truth, Beauty, and Order as revealed by the sciences and by spiritual searchers. Three sessions $40, Single session $15

    Munju Monique Ravindra is an award-winning writer, naturalist, and yoga teacher. She holds a Masters in Ecological Design, a BSc in Biology and International Development, and consults for nation- al parks and museums on creating transformative visitor experiences.

    Ravi Ravindra, PhD, is professor emeritus at Dalhousie University, Halifax, Canada, where he taught in the departments of physics, philosophy, and comparative religion. He has authored many essays and academic papers in these areas and several books, including Pilgrim Soul; The Gospel of John in the Light of Indian Mysticism; Science and the Sacred; The Wisdom of Patanjali’s Yoga Sutras, and The Bhagavad Gita: A Guide to Navigating the Battle of Life.

April 14, 2020
  • Another Journey Toward Awakening

    Cecil Messer

    April 14 – 17

    Tuesday – Friday, 10 – noon

    Drawing on teachings of the sages presented in the book, Pathways to Enlightenment: A Journey of Discovery and Radical Transformation, we will explore diverse ways of approaching a meaningful spiritual life. Each morning begins with a short guided meditation, leading us to connect with our own experience in meditation and the harmony within our group. Then we will explore together several traditions to examine what they say about the nature of the spiritual path, the qualities needed for the journey, and their approach to meditation. Our inquiry will also address the fundamental nature of the Self, the core of our being and existence, and the implications of a radical transformation. Series $50, Single session $15

    Cecil Messer, author of Pathways to Enlightenment: A Journey of Discovery and Radical Transformation, a revision of his earlier book, Out of Darkness, has presented classes at Krotona and elsewhere on meditation and spiritual teachings from Christianity, Buddhism, Hinduism, Sufism, Taoism, Theosophy, and Krishnamurti. He has published related articles in national and international periodicals. Born in Alabama, he resides currently in the mountains of rural North Carolina. He practices non-sectarian Buddhism and is a retiree of the NASA Space Program science and engineering team.

April 18, 2020
  • Exploration into the Teachings of Krishnamurti

    Padmanabhan Krishna and David Moody

    April 18 – 19
    Saturday 2 – 4 pm, Sunday 10 – noon

    Professor Krishna and Dr Moody will explore some of the confusing or contradictory issues that arise in the study of the teachings of Krishnamurti. A wide variety of topics will be explored. For example, Krishnamurti says time is not necessary for transformation, but he also urges people to be attentive to their thoughts and feelings throughout the day. Is that not a process that occurs in time? Extensive familiarity with the teachings of Krishnamurti is not required. Series $25, Single session $15

    David Edmund Moody, PhD is the author of An Uncommon Collaboration: David Bohm and J Krishnamurti. He is the former director of Oak Grove School, founded by Krishnamurti in Ojai, California, where he worked closely for more than a decade with both Bohm and Krishnamurti. His experiences there are described in his previous book, The Unconditioned Mind: J Krishnamurti and the Oak Grove School.

    Padmanabhan Krishna, is a life member of the Theosophical Society and a trustee of the Krishnamurti Foundation, India. He was a professor of physics at the Banaras Hindu University before joining the Krishnamurti center in Rajghat, Varanasi, as its rector in 1986. He has lectured worldwide on education, science, and spirituality, and has written several books in these fields. He is presently in charge of the Krishnamurti study center in Varanasi. His thoughts and ideas can be found on his website

April 21, 2020
  • The Divine Feminine in Jewish Spirituality

    Rabbi Rami Shapiro

    April 21 – 24

    Tuesday – Friday, 10 – noon

    The Bible is black fire on white fire (Midrash Tanhuma, Genesis I). Reading the black fire, the printed letters on the page, we learn what the Bible says; reading the white fire, the liminal space around and between the letters we discover what the Bible might mean. It is this search for meaning that leads us to Lady Wisdom, the Divine Feminine speaking to us of the nature of reality and calling us to take our rightful place within it. While often undervalued if not actually ignored, the Wisdom Books of the Bible provide us with insights and ideas we grow into rather than out of. Series $50, Single session $15

    Rabbi Rami Shapiro, PhD co-directs the One River Foundation, a global network of spiritually independent seekers, creatives, activists, and holy rascals reclaiming and proclaiming the Perennial Wisdom at the mystic heart of the world’s religions. Over the past 40 years, he has been a USAF chaplain, a congregational rabbi, a business consultant, a university professor, and an author of three dozen books on religion and spirituality including The Divine Feminine in Biblical Wisdom Literature and Embracing the Divine Feminine.

April 28, 2020
  • The Art of Silence

    Cynthia Overweg

    April 28 – May 1

    Tuesday – Friday, 10 – noon

       We need silence, just as much as we need air.
           - Thich Nhat Hanh

    Sages and mystics have said for centuries that interior silence is the foundation of spiritual unfoldment, and necessary for a fuller understanding of life and death. Is silence merely the absence of noise, or is it “printed in the center of our being,” as Trappist monk, Thomas Merton, described it. This dimension of silence has been referred to as Holy Silence; the Eternal; a vast Stillness; or an unnamable Presence. But words can only point to a very great mystery. Silence just IS. What is our relationship with silence? Is it possible to be utterly silent, similar to the way a flower silently opens to sunlight? Can we approach silence as a great work of art that brings us closer to what the Buddha called the “other shore,” and what the Christ referred to as the “kingdom of heaven?” These are some questions we will explore together. The workshop includes a mixture of speech, imagery, sound, and of course, silence. Series $50, Single session $15

    Cynthia Overweg is an educator, retreat leader, author, and filmmaker. Her focus is on inner transformation and our shared aspirations to live in harmony and peace. Her articles about the spiritual quest have been published internationally, and her documentary work has won awards from the American Film Institute and the National Endowment for the Arts. She is the author of The Silence We Don’t Know, available Spring 2020.

May 15, 2020
  • Antropogénesis Las 12 Estancias de Dzyan

    E Carbonell, M Leiderman, P Sender, G Torres

    Mayo 15 – 17
    Viernes 7:30 – 9 pm, sábado 10 – 12 y de 2 – 4 pm, domingo 10 – 12

    ¿Cómo surgió la humanidad? ¿Quiénes son nuestros antecesores? ¿Cómo fue desenvuelto el programa de transformaciones físicas y psíquico espirituales en las diferentes razas y sub razas que han surgido hasta el presente? ¿Qué fuerzas e inteligencias en nuestro Sistema Solar y Planetario han cooperado en este proceso? ¿Cuál es el plan para el futuro de la humanidad? Daremos respuesta a estas y otras preguntas en relación a las 12 Estancias de Dzyan de Antropogénesis de La Doctrina Secreta de HP Blavatsky y de sus comentarios. Serie completa $50, una sola sesión $15

    Eneida Elena Carbonell es graduada de UCLA con Licenciatura en Matemáticas Aplicadas y es maestra de Matemáticas para Adultos en Los Ángeles. Ha trabajado en la Biblioteca de Adyar, India y en el Instituto Teosófico de Krotona. Ha dado diversos seminarios en inglés y español, en Krotona y para la Federación Teosófica Interamericana.

    Martin Leiderman
    , es un ingeniero industrial por profesión. Es el fundador del Grupo de Estudios Teosóficos de West Los Angeles y es miembro activo de la Directiva de Krotona. El conduce programas de estudios Teosóficos internacionalmente sobre temas de Teosofía, simbología y filosofía. Sus clases combinan los estudios comparativos con bellas ilustraciones y discusiones animadas.

    Pablo Sender, PhD, ingresó a la Sociedad Teosófica (ST) en 1996, en Argentina, donde obtuvo su doctorado en Ciencias Biológicas. Vivió y trabajó en el Centro International de la ST en Adyar, Chennai, India, y luego en el Centro Nacional de la ST en América, en Wheaton, Illinois. En este momento vive trabajó en el Instituto de Teosofía de Krotona. Pablo ha presentado charlas, seminarios y clases en múltiples países, incluyendo una sesión de la Escuela de la Sabiduría en Adyar, India. Muchos de sus escritos y charlas están disponibles en su sitio web

    Gaspar Torres
    nació en un hogar teosófico en Cuba, se unió a la Sociedad desde joven, y fue Presidente de la Sección de ese país. Desde 2011 vive y trabaja en Krotona, y guía grupos de estudio por internet sobre las obras de HP Blavatsky, I.K. Taimmi, así como otros temas y autores teosófico.

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