Institute for Hermetic Studies 20th Anniversary Conference April 14, 2018



Institute for Hermetic Studies 20th Anniversary Conference (2018)

April 14th, 2018

Hampton Inn and Suites

Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania

10:00am – 9:00pm

Cost: $50

9:30-10:00am – Registration

10:00 – 10:45am

Getting Here From There: A Brief History of Twenty Years of the Institute for Hermetic Studies

From its origins as a local study group of The Philosophers of Nature to becoming a major publishing force, the Institute for Hermetic Studies has played a significant role in the advancement of Western Esotericism. This presentation will take you through a history of the organization, its struggles, achievements, and contributions to the various Western esoteric traditions.

Mark Stavish (Wyoming, Pennsylvania) is a respected authority in the study and practice of Western spiritual traditions. He is the author of over two dozen books, including The Path of Alchemy, Kabbalah for Health and Wellness, and Between the Gates – Lucid Dreaming, Astral Projection and the Body of Light in Western Esotericism and has been translated into nine languages worldwide.  Stavish has a B.A. in Theology and a M.A. in Counseling with a focus on Psychosynthesis.  He is the founder and Director of Studies at the Institute for Hermetic Studies and the Louis Claude de St. Martin Fund.

11:00 – 11:45am

Roots of the Tree of Gnosis: Basic Principles of Egyptian Hermetism

In the present time, many use the term ‘Hermetic’ in reference to the Western Mystery Tradition- and often it is used as a general term for ceremonial magic itself.  This presentation will examine the roots of Hermeticism in the Hermopolitan theology of Ancient Egypt, its survival in Alexandrian Hermetism and beyond.

Michael S. Eleleth (Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania) is a Gnostic Catholic priest and independent Hermetist with a background in the study and practice of ecclesiastical Gnosticism, Hermopolitan mysticism and magic, and Neoplatonic theurgy. In addition to this, he is an initiate in a private spiritist tradition and has thoroughly studied shamanism, indigenous European religion, practical shamanism, magic and the Western Mystery Traditions with a focus upon Renaissance mysteriosophy and stellar Mageia. He draws his inspiration from the same source as the Sufi Israqqiyah who practiced ascent to the twin cities of the Ogdoad.

11:45 – 1:45pm – Lunch

1:45 – 2:30pm

Conjurations of Chaos – The Magical Universe of Kenneth Grant

In a sequence of nine painstakingly fashioned volumes, Kenneth Grant constructed a Dædalian

labyrinth whose only means of escape lay in the capacity of those whose attempt to fathom it combines devotion, ingenuity, and a generous helping of luck or magically enabled “coincidence.” This presentation delineates an approach to apprehending this paradigm focusing on Grant’s three keys to occult power: refinement, subtlety, and silence;  Chaos & Void, the mechanics of our field of play, Faculty X, and the categorization of conscious states; and Creation of the Magical Universe.

Alfred DeStefano III (Charlottesville, Virginia) a correspondent of Kenneth Grant during the 1990s, lives at the edge of a dark forest in Virginia, where he writes, teaches, and evokes various denizens of the Pit to visible appearance for occasional relief from academia. In addition to being a “Renaissance Man” of many varied and unique talents, having taught mathematics at the university level, DeStefano is the Series Editor and book interior designer for the Institute for Hermetic Studies Monograph and Study Guides publications. He also contributed to the 7th Edition of The Golden Dawn by Israel Regardie, edited by John Michael Greer (Llewellyn).


Topic: Hexsigns as Encoded Objects

This presentation will examination these things called “Hex Signs” – a form of talismanic folk art inseparable from Pennsylvania German history and tradition, and a explore their iconographic structure and content.  Particularly interesting and unique examples of this complex tradition will be displayed.

Hunter M. Yoder (Berks County) has been described as “The most prolific and outspoken artist of a modern school of Hexologists.”  Owner and operator of the Hex Factory in Philadelphia, Yoder embraces the title of “Hexologist,” and has sought to reinvent the mythology of the modern hex sign by incorporating ancient pre-Christian ritual culture by combining plant geometry, runic inscriptions, and several designs which are an homage to the work of Lee Gandee. Identifying himself religiously as a Heathen, Yoder blends traditional motifs with arcane occult emblems in the reviving of ancient Germanic religion producing a work that is visually stunning, and part of the spectrum of modern applications of continued interest in Pennsylvania Dutch culture in the United States.  Yoder is the author of four books including Hex Highway, a tour of the sacred historical sites of Pennsylvania Dutch culture and magic.


TOPIC: An Introduction to Martinism and Its Spiritual Relationship to Freemasonry

Esoteric Orders appear to be at the mercy of cycles, and Martinism is no exception. Indeed, this Order is currently in its third incarnation, and in these troubling times, perhaps it is appropriate to consider whether the Way of the Heart will survive, or once again disappear, only to rise up once more at the end of the 21st Century. By examining the roots of Martinism, that optimistic branch of mystical Christianity which sees the divine spark in every human being, we will follow its fortunes through three Centuries, to better understand what lessons can be learned from this phenomenon which, despite the many setbacks it has faced, still endures and teaches us today.

Piers A. Vaughan (Bayonne, New Jersey) was born in Brighton, England, and attended Brighton College, Oxford and Cranfield Universities. He was an avid musician, singing in a local church, playing several instruments, conducting and composing; he was also a keen fencer, and enjoyed appearing in local plays. He even appeared as an extra in ‘Star Wars’ and ‘Quadrophenia’! Vaughan has an MA in Psychology, an MBA in Business Studies and an MA in Divinity. He has worked for a number of banks, including Midland, HSBC and Deutsche Bank.   A Freemason since 1979, he has translated a number of important 18th Century French Masonic Ritual l treatises and rituals into English. Vaughan is involved in a number of esoteric movements and is the head of a church descended from the Pre-Nicene Church of Richard, Duc de Palatine. His most recent works include translation and commentary of Elementary Treatison Practical Magic by Papus, and Of Errors & Truth: Man Restored to the Universal Principle of Knowledge by L.C. de St. Martin.

4:30 – 4:45pm Closing Remarks

Lunch and dinner breaks have been provided to allow for attendees to eat at any number of easily restaurants nearby. Those wishing to bring their own or shop organically can do so at the Wegman’s Groceries near the hotel.

Evening Presentation from 7:00-9:00pm with Silent Auction of rare and unique items of an esoteric nature.

Ample time has been provided to purchase books, get copies signed, and to socialize with speakers and attendees. We look forward to seeing your there. Remember, there is ONLY ONE TWENTIETH ANNIVERSARY!

Admission and Registration: $50 per person if paid in advance and prior to March 1, 2018. Registration from March 1 to April 1 is $60 per person. Registration thereafter and payment on the day of the event is $75. We strongly encourage you to register in advance as seating is limited and we are expecting full attendance.

Payment can be made by check, money order, or Paypal.

Payment can be mailed to: Institute for Hermetic Studies, P.O. Box 4513, Wyoming, Pennsylvania 18644-04513

PayPal invoice will be sent upon request. Email: for information.

The Conference is being held at the Hampton Inn and Suites, Wilkes-Barre (Pennsylvania). Please use the following link for reservations.

Group Information

Group Name: Institute for Hermetic Studies
Group Code: IHS
Check-in: 13-APR-2018
Check-out: 16-APR-2018
Hotel Name: Hampton Inn & Suites Wilkes-Barre/Scranton, PA
Hotel Address: 876 Schechter Drive
Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania 18702


Hotel Phone: 570-824-1005


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