2018 International UCLA Conference April 7th: “Secular Enlightenment—Balancing Faith and Masonic Virtues”

On Saturday, April 7th, 2018, the 7th International Conference at UCLA, sponsored by the California Masonic Foundation, will take place in Los Angeles.

This year’s topic is “Secular Enlightenment: Balancing Faith and Masonic Virtues.”

The Enlightenment created a new culture that formed the basis of our modern civil society. As this movement spread throughout Europe, Masonic lodges became an important enclave for social transformation. Learn how Masons balanced the intersection of religious and secular forces during this period, with an approach that was both radical and revolutionary. Hear from iconic Masonic scholar Margaret Jacob as she completes her pre-retirement tenure at UCLA. Speakers from around the world will travel to Los Angeles to honor Professor Jacob’s remarkable career and share global perspectives of Masonic scholarship.

Scheduled presentations include:
• The French Revolution: Did existing Masonic values of fraternity and equality fuel the French Revolution, or was it the French Revolution that enshrined these values in Freemasonry?
– José Antonio Ferrer Benimeli, University of Zaragoza, Spain
• Early secular Freemasonry: Although early Freemasonry claimed to accept men of all faiths, in the 19th century, this aim was oftentimes limited by imperialist forces.
– Jessica Harland-Jacobs, University of Florida
• Secular spirituality: From the unique vantage point of 20th century Turkey, discover how Freemasonry offers men an avenue for exploring secular spirituality through universal esotericism.
– Remzi Sanver, Ph.D., Istanbul Bilgi University, Turkey
• Lodges as sanctuaries or workshops for the world: In the 18th century, Masonic lodges found themselves at a crossroads when some members wanted to limit philanthropy to the intimate setting of the lodge and others wanted to promote Masonic values within the public sphere.
– Pierre-Yves Beaurepaire, University of Nice, France
• Revisiting the Illuminati: Although the Illuminati Order was dismissed as a school for radicalism in the 1700s, contemporary research suggests that Illuminati degrees may in fact align with the central ideas of radical, secular Enlightenment thought.
– Reinhard Markner, University of Innsbruck, Austria (Markner, who edited “The Secret School of Wisdom: The Authentic Rituals and Doctrines of the Illuminati,” was awarded the Regulus Award by the Policy Studies Organization in 2015)

Also speaking at this conference will be:
• Susan Mitchell Sommers, Ph.D. (author of “Thomas Dunckerley and English Freemasonry”) – Saint Vincent College, Pennsylvania
• María Eugenia Vázquez Semadeni, Ph.D. (author of “The Formation of a Republican Political Culture: the Public Debate on Freemasonry in, Mexico 1821-1830,”) – University of California, Los Angeles
Details:

April 7, 2018
University of California, Los Angeles
1200 De Neve Drive
Covell Commons, Grand Horizon Ballroom8:30AM – 5:30PM
Conference registration is $30. Add a Southern-style buffet lunch for just $20. To register, visit the Conference website HERE.

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