Quareia - a New Magical School for the 21st Century
Over the last months Josephine McCarthy and I have been working quietly on a project we called 'Quareia'. This Medieval Latin term refers to 'a place where stones are squared'. It seemed a fitting metaphor for a place where also we are shaped and born as magicians. And that is what Quareia is meant to become: a new and completely open magical school - without fees, structures of hierarchy or imbalances of power between students and teachers. A place to be shaped for every magical practitioner who is searching for a new way of learning, integrating and practicing magic. All the way from beginner to adepthood.
Of course there have been and still are many magical lodges, orders and schools. Many of them are rather short-lived. Even fewer have contributed something new and meaningful to a tradition that essentially has begun to repeat itself since the late 19th century. The first and foremost question to answer therefore is why a new school of magic is needed and what its purpose should be? Below you can find my personal motivation for this work as I explained it in the crowd-funding proposal for Quareia.
However, what we are sharing today is not a proposal or an idea only. Quareia has already begun and you can help us to fully bring it to life. Josephine McCarthy has spent the last months designing the entire curriculum, ensuring all 234 lessons will support each other and build a sequence of steps like rungs on a ladder. She has also written the entire first module and we are publishing it today. I was busy editing, layouting and setting up the web presence of Quareia. The goals was to create a space that is both supported through inner contacts as well as pure and large enough to hold all the extensive content you will be able to access once all modules have been written.
Today we are happy to share access to this space with you. The Quareia course will remain free and fully accessible to any interested student and any point in time. The goal is to share what needs sharing and not to hold back due to interests in power, privilege or ego as it has happened so often in our tradition.
If you like what you see, then we ask you to support us in bringing this new school to life. What we cannot do alone is to provide the entire funding necessary to cover a significant project like this. Based on careful calculations we are asking for your help to raise a total of 7700 GBP over 31 days. This is the budget required to allow Josephine McCarthy to write the entire curriculum, from first lesson to the last, all 234 in total over a period of 24 months only. Anyone familiar with her books knows the fine quality and level of innovation of her work; in addition we are proud to present the first eight lessons on the Quareia webpage already.
Our joint support will prove whether the time is ripe for an undertaking such as this. It's obvious that no vision has ever been achieved through pondering, talking or facebook-posts alone. But even few visions have ever been achieved through the heroic effort of a single person only. Instead what it takes is a whole community coming together, supporting and caring for each other along the way. We hope you might be joining us in this new community today.
Why a New School of Magic?
Great artists of the past were taught about human anatomy. They were taught about the physics of light and the natural substances from which colors are created. They were not taught how to move their brushes on paper, how to position their easel towards the sky or how to sign their work once finished. They were rigorously trained and tested on the former, yet the latter they were free to teach themselves. So they learned through curiosity, through failures and surprises and genuine life experiences - and slowly began to develop their own techniques.
Over the last 200 hundred years we have almost fully reversed this approach to teaching in Western magic: today Neophytes are trained in style, in mimicking movement and habitus. Unfortunately they learn next to nothing about the foundations of the Western craft.
Qareia is a proposal to reverse this trend. We are calling for funds to establish the full cur- riculum of a new type of magical school. A school that is open to anyone, that is free and accessible online at any time. A school that is entirely focussed on teaching the most essential skills in magic, with unknown precision and depth in its materials, yet free from any particular style or man-made overlays. With your help we are proposing to create a place that does not hold an agenda - except for setting its students free to create their own craft. That is the vision of Quareia, the latin word for ‘a place where stones are squared’.
The body of work to achieve this will be sig- nificant and similar to the volume of eight to ten published books. All of these will be made avail- able online for free on www.quareia.com. Yet, to design, write, layout and publish Quareia’s curricu- lum funding is required. The funding necessary for the project to happen is beyond the capabili- ties of a single person. And no publishing house anywhere will become involved as it is a 'not for profit' venture.
Instead, we all have the chance to become a publishers of Quareia - and benefit from its free teachings in return. Great things are never achieved alone, but they are possible through the support of a community. The funding proposal is strictly calculated to cover the minimum expenses Josephine would need in order to spend 36 hours a week for approximately 24 months writing, in order to complete the work.
In this document you can find a full outline of Quareia’s purpose, approach to teaching, proposed curriculum and suggestion to establish an open community of adepts. Even the smallest contribution will make a big difference. Thank you for helping us sow this magical seed.