by Rosemarie Anderson, Ph.D. Professor Emerita, Sofia University
The EUROTAS 2014 Crete Conference was the finest and most successful conference I have attended in years. The diversity and inclusiveness of the programming, the quality of the keynotes, the welcoming and warm-hearted EUROTAS community, the conference hotel beside the Mediterranean Sea, and the beautiful land and people of Crete added up to a rich and lively conference.
The conference theme was Metamorphosis: Disintegration, Integration, Conscious Living. From the Sofia University community, Core Faculty David Lukoff kicked off the conference with a keynote entitled Spiritual Emergencies and Spiritual Practices. Later in the week, I keynoted on the topic of Research in a Sacred World. Other keynote topics included spiritual crisis and discipleship, the challenge of awakening the feminine in our time, towards a viable theory of consciousness, the commodification of the sacred, and the need for collaboration and reaching out to aligned communities worldwide. Also from the Sofia University community, current students and alum, including Aimee La Bree Hohn, David Lipschitz, Paul Freinkel, John Hinton, TJ Weisbecker, Steven Schmitz, Regina Hess, Dee Purcell, and Milica Zegarac facilitated workshops on a variety of topics, such as hallucinogens, ceremony and ritual, shamanic practices, extraordinary experiences and life meaning, and mainstreaming transpersonal research methodologies. Video recordings of all keynotes and many of the panels and workshops are already available on the conference website.
For me personally, the conference was auspicious—replete with relationships renewed by personal contact, new transpersonal colleagues, opportunities for extending the vision of transpersonal research methods, and no doubt more travel. I also enjoyed many meals with four of my post-doctoral scholars to strengthen our community and further our individual research projects. The photo you see above, shows a group of post-doctoral scholars and former dissertation students, now Sofia University alum, before invoking prayers for the end of Yom Kippur on the beach at sunset. From left to right are Paula Casella, Rosemarie Anderson, David Lipschitz, Jacqui Linder, Paul Freinkel, Diane Greig, and Marleen de Villiers.
On the upcoming conference front, I also attend several meetings of the International Transpersonal Association (ITA) Board to plan future collaborations and conferences. The next international transpersonal conference is hosted and organized by Alubrat, the Portuguese Transpersonal Association, in Salvador, Brazil, September 4 -7, 2015. Mark your calendars.