Learning to Live in Jump Time
Mystery School 1997
"I believe that we are part of a major transition shift.
This is the great time. This is the great corridor of
history. We are being called to re-invent the world while we
re-invent ourselves. Thus, we can become designers and
weavers of a new pattern to r"e-envision and re-enchant the
world." Jean Houston
"The Times They Are A-changin'"
"Never before have these words held more truth. The advent of modern
technology hurtles us into Jump Time -- an accelerated level of
consciousness that moves us to rise to our full potential.
At the cusp of the third millennium, the possibilities for cultural
evolution align at opposite poles. At one pole, information technology
carries the potential for a "wired" society stripped of humanity. The
digital revolution lures us with technospeak and eye-grabbing graphics. We
risk losing our identity to our on-line avatars and virtual selves.
Creativity often battles with connectivity -- the calling card of the
Even as this contemporary danger moves over telephone lines, TV screens and
computer monitors, the ancient ravages of warfare, famine and natural
catastrophe still grip the planet.
At the other pole, as we accelerate toward Jump Time, these varied threats
gift us with an alternate, hopeful possibility for evolution -- the Age of
Social Artistry. From this perspective, Jump Time is the open moment. This
moment allows vital new patterns to project into fixed categories of
thought. Human history has survived several such challenging periods. Those
times held danger that shadowed opportunity, and the clear choice thundered:
Grow or Die!
Waves of possibility, cultural and individual, are swelling on the shore of
the now. pushing us towards radical change. This floodtide of options
seeking form makes us stewards of the most dangerous and exciting time in
Mystery School will prepare us to re-vision chaos so that we become social
artists who orchestrate possibility. We will explore how to transform chaos
and destruction into order and creativity. Our explorations will ready us to
build a world that works and a technology harnessed to serve humanity."
WHAT IS A MYSTERY SCHOOL?
Mystery Schools have existed in all times and places -- Afghanistan, Egypt,
the Celtic Mysteries, the mysteries of the Australian Aborigines, the Ancient
Egyptian Mysteries, the Eleusinian Mysteries, the Orphic Mysteries, the
Pythagorean Mysteries, the mysteries of the Shao Lin priests in China, the
Native American mysteries of kivas. Why?
Because to be fully human, we always need two schools. We need the standard
brand school that gives us our skills, gives us our sureties about how we
operate in our local world, our local time. However, they always leave us
in a state of longing. How many of you graduated from high school or college and said - " Well, that was it?!" So there's always been a second school, the school of the deep coding. It's the school of evolution, the school that reminds you who and what you are and what your place is in this time, in this earth. It's the Cosmic School, the Night School, the Meta School, the Second School, the Deep School. It has been in existence probably since humans have been humans. We find it in the ancient caves -- La Grotte de les Tres Freres or in Lascaux.
** editor's note
Mystery School is the most complex and challenging seminar that Jean Houston gives, meeting as it does for nine weekends a year. It requires a higher level of commitment, and rewards it not only with lectures, exercises, and performances, but with a deeper, more lasting sense of community than is usually found in workshops. It's valuable and stimulating whatever the topic or theme for a given year, and the temporary community created is welcoming, tolerant, and diverse. I've found it more helpful than "non-workshop goer" like myself cares to admit. Reading Jean's books -- rich and evocative as they are -- seems to me like reading a play, as compared to participating in a performance with all the work and rewards which that entails..
For information about Mystery School write or call:
Jean Houston, Ph.D.
P.O. Box 3300
Pomona, N.Y. 10970
Tel: 914 354-4965 / 354-3288