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    Advanced Spiritual Studies

    The soul should always stand ajar, ready to welcome the ecstatic experience.
    -Emily Dickinson

    The Advanced Spiritual Studies Degree fine-tunes the student’s sensibilities to great contemporary spiritual leaders–their thinking, vision, spirit, and contributions.  By studying the global spiritual canon, the student internalizes a standard of excellence.  Learning a broad range of spiritual subjects expands the student’s spiritual palette.  She refines her own unique view.

    A degree in Advanced Spiritual Studies which may include courses chosen from the following Special Studies in Spirituality or from the student’s own ideas.

    Each of the following subjects can be studied in varying depth, according to the student’s interest and the academic degree level.

    • B. A.–90 quarter units.
    • M. A.–45 quarter units.
    • Ph. D.–90 quarter units.

    Recommended courses for a degree in Advanced Spiritual Studies include:

    Special Studies in Spirituality

    Contemporary Spirituality and Psychology.

    • Contemporary Religious Experience.
    • Psychology of Higher Consciousness.
    • Psychology of Death and Dying.
    • Near Death Experiences.
    • Past Life Regression.
    • The Structure of Intelligence.
    • Spiritual Cartography.
    • The Nature of Self.
    • Spiritual Initiation.
    • Enlightenment.

    Non-Traditional Approaches to Healing.

    • Contemporary Religious Experience.
    • Psychology of Higher Consciousness.
    • Psychology of Death and Dying.
    • Near Death Experiences.
    • Past Life Regression.
    • The Structure of Intelligence.
    • Spiritual Cartography.
    • The Nature of Self.
    • Spiritual


    Modern Spiritual Leaders.  The writings of the following spiritual leaders and schools of thought can be combined in Gateway University Learning Contracts:

    • Alice Bailey, The Tibetan Master and The Acane School.
    • Mme. Blavatsky and Theosophy.
    • Rudolph Steiner and Anthrosophy.
    • Ouspensky and Gurdieff.
    • Paramahansa Yogananda and the Self-Realization Fellowship.
    • Krishnamurti.
    • Sri Sai Baba.
    • Leonard Orr and Rebirthing.
    • Maharishi Mahesh Yogi and Transcendental Meditation.
    • Yogi Baghan, Kundalini Yoga, and 3HO.
    • Siddha Yoga, Muktananda, Chidvilasananda.
    • Ram Dass.  Kriyananda and Ananda Village.
    • Swami Rama and Himalayan Institute.
    • The Hare Krishna Movement and Bhaktivedanta, Swami Prabhupad.
    • Chogyam Trungpa and Tibetan Buddhism.
    • Carlos Castenada.
    • Findhorn, Peter Caddy, Eileen Caddy, and David Spengler.
    • Lynn Andrews.  Elizabeth Claire Prophet, Summit Lighthouse.
    • Sri Aurobindo, Integral Yoga.
    • Tarthang Tulku, Nyingma Institute.
    • Da Free John/Da Love Ananda.
    • Sun Bear.
    • Jack Kornfield and Joseph Goldstein, Vipassana Meditation.
    • Thich Naht Hanh.
    • Rajneesh.
    • Ken Wilber.
    • Eckhart Tolle.
    • Advaita teachers: Gangaji, Papaji, and Adyashanti.
    • The Deeksha Movement.

    School of Spiritual Studies Course Descriptions

    SPR 403 Hinduism. 5 units.  The vast 6,000 year Vedantic tradition explored with its seven major systems of thought; The Bhagavad Gita; Patanjali’s Yoga Sutras and yogic systems; the Hindu pantheon; and contemporary Advaita.

    SPR 404 Buddhism.  5 units.  The historic development of Buddhism including Buddha’s life, Hinayana, Mahayana, Tibetan, Tantric, and Zen schools of thought.  Basic concepts beginning with The Four Noble Truths and the Eightfold Path; the six Paramitas; and Bodhisattva ideals.

    SPR 405 Taoism and Confucianism.  1 unit.  Lao Tsu and Chuang Tsu, as well as the historic development and influence of Taoist thought and the natural man.  Confucius, the man and his societal contributions such as the “philosopher king.”

    SPR 406 The International New Thought Alliance.  1 unit.  A comparative study of Religious Science, Christian Science, and Unity, including major historical figures:  Quimby, Eddy, Emerson, Mesmer, Hopkins, Cady, Fillmore, and Holmes.

    SPR 407 Judaism.  5 units.  The Torah, Abraham, Moses, and the evolution of Judaism including Orthodox, Conservative, and Reform movements as well as contemporary Revivalism.

    SPR 408 Christianity.  5 units.  The Old and New Testament including Dartmouth Bible exegesis, historical evolution, and The Apocrypha.

    SPR 409 Islam.  5 units.  The roots of Islam in the three Abrahamic monotheisms explored along with Mohammed’s life and teachings; and Sufism.

    SPR 410 Indigenous Peoples’ Religious Practices.  5 units.  Shamanism, kahunas, Shintoism, Mayan culture, and Native American Indian wisdom explored.

    SPR 411 Yoga.  3 units.  A survey of types of yoga including Hatha, Laya, Bhakti, Karma, Jnana, and Raja yogas.  The historical development of each movement, its leaders, and literature.  Includes the study of Patanjali’s Yoga Sutras and the works of Mircea Eliade.

    SPR 411 World Religions.  5 units.  Hinduism, Buddhism, Taoism,  Islam, Judaism, and Christianity are studied, along with explorations into the religious practices of  indigenous peoples.  Houston Smith.

    SPR 412 Western Mystical Traditions.  5 units.  Historical theories of self and consciousness, including philosophical, theological, alchemical, mystical, and esoteric points of view from leading figures and schools of thought including:  Hermes Trismegistos, Aristotle, Paracelsus, Kabbalah, Christian mystics, angelology, International New Thought Alliance (Religious Science, Unity, Christian Science), Native American Indian wisdom, Mayan wisdom, shamanism, Rosicrucians, and kahunas.

    SPR 413 Eastern Mystical Traditions.  5 units.  A comparative study of Eastern theories of the mind, including Hinduism, Buddhism, Taoism, Islam their historical development, notions of self, consciousness, world view, and self-transformation.  The Bhagavad Gita, the Vedantas, Buddha, Zen, Chuang Tsu, Lao Tsu, The I Ching, Confucianism, and Sufism.

    SPR 414 Mysticism.  3 units.  A comparative study of Jewish, Christian, and Moslem mystical traditions.  The differences between mysticism and occultism are analyzed.

    SPR 415 Myths and Symbols.  1 unit.  The transformational nature of myth, archetypes, and symbols in shaping culture, religion, consciousness, and self.  Mandalas.  Sacred geometry.  Dream symbols.  Identifying personal mythology.  Carl Jung, Joseph Campbell.

    SPR 416 Theories of Enlightenment.  An overview of concepts of enlightenment, samadhi, nirvana, kensho, satori, epiphanies, mukti, kaivalya, and realization.  Study of the Gateway Enlightenment Paradigm exploring the seven gateways or spiritual initiations that bring new levels of enlightenment, moving through ascension and integration, arriving at “Blessed Ordinariness.”  Eastern and Western comparative views of enlightenment, both ancient and modern views of enlightenment, are explored.  See CON 5 Psychology of Higher Consciousness.  Also see The Gateway Audio Curriculum,Enlightenment Series.  Also see:  The Gateway Ministerial Audio Curriculum:  MAC 1 The God Ladder:  Your Earthly and Divine Anatomy; MAC 13 Transcendence:  Samadhi and Nirvana; MAC 14Enlightenment; and MAC 14 Spiritual Initiation for Contemporary Living.

    MAC 14 Enlightenment.  1/2 unit.  Gateway Audio Curriculum.  (2 classes.)  Definitions and experiences of enlightened states of consciousness.  Accessing enlighten states through the God Ladder.  Eastern mystical traditions and their accounts of enlightenment.  Exploring:  What is enlightenment?

    SPR 417 Alice Bailey Writings.  1 unit.  The New Group of World Servers and the Bailey teachings as related to Theosophy and other major metaphysical movements.  Bailey writings include:  A Treatise on Cosmic Fire; Initiation Human and Solar;  Discipleship in the New Age; and Rays and Initiation.

    SPR 418 Kabbalah.  1 unit.  The Tree of Life, Sephiroth, and the processes of Gematria, Notarikon, and Temurah.  The Tetragrammaton (Great Name), Adamic archetypes, and world spheres.  Kabbalistic interpretations of human nature and the universe.

    SPR 401 Spiritual Mapping:  The Structure of Consciousness.  5 units.  Experiential training in consciousness using the God Ladder.  Discernment of the seven domains of earthly and divine consciousness.  Learning the differences between soul, spiritual, and psychic levels of awareness.  The laws, limits, powers, and hazards of each level of consciousness are explored:  physical, emotional, mental, psychic, soul, spiritual, and Universal Source.  The student learns to consciously integrate the wholeness of her being, including Divine Source.

    MAC 1 The God Ladder:  Your Earthly and Divine Anatomy.  2 units.  (5 classes.) The seven domains of consciousness.  The nature of the Void.  Your Personal God vs the Eternal God.  Benefits of the God Ladder.  Limits and Powers of the 7 Domains of Consciousness.  Ascension and Descension Arcs of the Ladder.  Spiritual Initiations on the Path.  God Questionnaire.  Self-Interview Skills to Speed-Read Your God Ladder. Divine Self-Parenting.  Internal Conflict Resolution Skills.  The Soul’s Round Table.  Hazards of the 21st Century.  God Ladder Solutions.  Spiritual Diseases.  Spiritual Maturity.

    MAC 2 Spiritual Initiation for Contemporary Living.  1 unit.  Gateway Audio Curriculum.  (2 classes)  Exploring common shifts in consciousness as the student cycles-up into new realities as a result of spiritual practice and meditation.  The 7 Gateways.  Enlightenment.  Participatory Divinity.  Ascending and Descending the God Ladder.  God Union and Liberation.  Reinventing God.

    CON 5 Psychology of Higher Consciousness.  3 units.  Classical models of higher consciousness Eastern and Western.  Accounts of samadhi, satori, kensho, epiphany, nirvana, enlightenment, kundalini, and spiritual initiation are surveyed.  The God Ladder and discerning domains of consciousness.  Irina Tweedie, The Chasm of Fire;  O’Halloran, Pure Heart, Enlightened Mind:  Zen Journal;  Baird Spalding, Life and Teaching of the Masters of the Far East.

    CON 2 Contemporary Trends in Consciousness.  3 units.  A wide-ranging panoply of current trends in consciousness is examined, both theory and practice.  Explores social, philosophical, and political issues.

    PSY 202 Regression Counseling.  5 units.  This experiential class explores time-tripping techniques into past, parallel, and future lives; far memory; accessing childhood experiences; birth information, intra-uterine, and pre-uterine life.  Karma and reincarnation.  Birth trauma resolution with rescripting techniques.  Experiential training in the illusory nature of time, space, and personal identity–opening one’s identity-lock and radically expanding consciousness.  Seeing past lives through the eyes of the soul, the student releases judgmental, polarized thinking.  Old reality constructs dissolve, allowing internal paradigm shifts that are important for advanced spiritual initiation.

    PSY 217 Birth Trauma Studies.  1 unit.  Exploring the work and concepts of Leonard Orr’s Rebirthing, Frederick LeBoyer, Stanislav Grof, and Otto Rank.  Birth regression.

    PSY 216 Psychology of Death and Dying–Thanatology.  2.5 units.  Theories of dying:  classical, medical, and psychic.  Comparative study of major world literature on death and dying.  The Tibetan Book of the DeadEgyptian Book of the Dead.  Reincarnation and karma.  Near-death-experience, Raymond Moody.  Elisabeth Kubler-Ross.  Hospice; Shanti Project.  James Van Praagh and TV’s The Medium, psychic communication with the dead.

    MAC 26 Death as an Identity Crisis.  1/2 unit.  Gateway Audio Curriculum.  (1 class.)  Using God Ladder meditation to witness and to experience the expansion of self that occurs during death.  Understanding death as the dissolving of personal identity:  physically, emotionally, mentally, psychically, soul, and spiritually–in the return to Eternal Source.  During the death experience, each level of expanded consciousness returns the individual to deeper God union–in the unspooling of personal identity.

    GAC Angels of Death.  1/2 unit.  Gateway Audio Curriculum.  (1 class.)  A guided meditation giving the student the experience of Angels of Death.

    GAC Angels of Death and Rebirth.  1/2 unit.  Gateway Audio Curriculum.  A guided meditation showing that life and death are the front and back of each other as Angels of Death and Rebirth work together to create new life from the energy released in dying.

    GAC25 Karma and Reincarnation.  1/2 unit.  Gateway Audio Curriculum.  (1 class.)  Exploration of widely accepted Eastern mystical beliefs regarding the power of your actions and past lives to create your current life.  Personal accountability from one life to the next.  The reappearance of current family members and friends throughout many lives.  Learning about the life between lives when you create your Soul Contract for this life.  This class expands your consciousness and your identity.  It begins developing your far-memory.

    SPR 402 Reincarnation and Karma.  1 unit.  Study of the laws of karma effecting reincarnation, including cross-cultural case studies.  Arthur Guirdham, The Cathars and Reincarnation; Michael Newton, Journey of Souls, Destiny of Souls, Life Between Lives.

    GAC What Is Permanent?  1/2 unit.  Gateway Audio Curriculum.  (1 class.)  Exploring the impermanence of dualized, earthly, time/space reality.  Discerning the differences between what is passing and what is permanent; what is ephemeral and what is eternal; what is illusion and what is Truth?  Learning your True Identity apart from your persona.

    PSY 208 Grief Counseling.  1 unit.  Grief can involve the loss of a dream, a self-image, a hope, a marriage, a death, a diet, a move, and sometimes even a success.  Grief often comes from unresolved childhood abandonment issues.  This class presents the stages of grief and methods of dealing with them.

    MAC 13 Transcendence:  Samadhi and Nirvana.  1/2 unit.  Gateway Audio Curriculum.  (1 class.)  Eastern concepts of transcendent states of consciousness reached in meditation as one dissolves form, duality, identity, and time/space limitations to become absorbed in the Void or Universal Oneness.

    MAC 14 Enlightenment.  1/2 unit.  Gateway Audio Curriculum.  (2 classes.)  Definitions and experiences of enlightened states of consciousness.  Accessing enlighten states through the God Ladder.  Eastern mystical traditions and their accounts of enlightenment.  Exploring:  What is enlightenment?