CONFERENCE: Quest for the Mysteries of Antiquity
September 3-8, 2008
The Ancient Island of Samothrace, Greece

POST-CONFERENCE TOUR: Istanbul and SW Coast of Turkey
September 8-16, 2008

About the Conference

winged victoryThis conference is intended for those who wish to deepen their attunement to the ancient Greek Mysteries and visit some of the most sacred sites in the world.

For over a thousands years, the Sanctuary of the Great Gods on Samothrace was one of the most famous mystery centers of the ancient world, rivaling Delphi in stature and fame.

International scholars, writers and artists will gather on Samothrace including: Keith Critchlow, Sacred Geometry pioneer, and Academy Sacred Geometry faculty member Scot Olsen (read more about the teachers below)


About Samothrace and the Sanctuary of the Great Gods

waterThe island of Samothrace (Samothraki), in the North Aegean, lies 34 km southwest of Alexandroupolis. The sacred Mount Saos rises to 1611 m. The island is small, at 176 square km, but it contains one of the ancient world's great mystery sites, the Sanctuary of the Great Gods, including the Great Mother of Axeiros and the Kabiri.

The Sanctuary of the Great Gods on the island of Samothrace was a renowned center of religious life in the northern Aegean from the seventh century b.c. until the fourth century after Christ, and the mysteries practiced there rank in historical importance with those of Eleusis. From the beginning of Macedonian supremacy, Philip II and his successors embellished the Sanctuary with great buildings of innovative design for both pious and political ends.

fallsA traditional town, it is dominated by the massive medieval castle. At Palaiopolis, on the north side of the island, there are traces of the ancient city, built in around 700 BC close to the sanctuary of the Cabeiroi (great gods). The sanctuary, which attained its zenith in Hellenistic times, was never totally destroyed and has been excavated by the American School of Classical Studies. Various sections of the Cyclopean wall, palace (6th century BC edifice), theatre, propylon and the foundations of diverse buildings of the sanctuary (temples, "ex votos", votive of Philip II and Alexander IV etc.) have been revealed.

One may also visit the ancient cemetery (7th century BC - 2nd century AD) and remnants of medieval towers (15th century) nearby. Among the diverse finds displayed in its small Archaeological Museum is a plaster cast of the famous statue of the Winged Victory, discovered at Palaiopoli and nowadays housed in the Louvre, Paris. At Therma (13km. from the harbour), where there is a therapeutic spring, one may enjoy the unique vista of the coast opposite, as well as the islands of Thasos and Lemnos. There are excursions by local boats to the southern shores (Ammos) of Samothraace with their dense vegetation, streams and brooks.

ruinsSamothrace is not on the main tourist route, but the natural beauty of the island, with its rivers, forests and mountains, and numerous monuments has the capacity to enchant all those who come here. Access to the island is by boat only, adding to its charm, and is still relatively untouched by tourism. You can fly from Athens to Alexandroupolis, which has local boat service to the island.



Our conference takes you to the heart and soul of where Greek Philosophy began.
Our world today longs for wisdom, and where better to search for its spiritual roots in the West than ancient Greece?


The weather on Samothrace in September is beautiful. The average temperature is 67 degrees F (20 C) and the high is in the high 80’s (26 C) while the lows are generally in the high 50’s. The average rainfall is three days for the entire month. Remember- this is northern Greece, it is a green Island and has sea breezes, so the weather is reasonably mild.



Special Discount
To receive discounted middle-registration rates, please mention this code when registering: RG08. For online registrations, please include this code in the “How did you first hear about this conference?” or enter into the comments at the bottom of the form to receive your discount.

Special deal: Early Bird Discount  until July 28th US $1595

To take advantage of this special offer you must mention this code when registering: RG08  

Up to July 28:  US$1595
Up to August 18: US$ 1725
After August 18: US$1875



woman in front of fountainThe conference fee includes the full conference program, afternoon activities, evening events, all meals and the ferry to and from Samothraki (Samothrace).

Email For accommodation descriptions and costs
There are two hotels on the Island and for the 5 nights it starts at US 450 single, or $250 per person double.

You will need to book your flights to our Conference in Greece via Athens then onto Alexandroupolis.


Study Tour of Istanbul, and
Ephesus, Didyma and Miletus, South Coast Turkey
With Ibn 'Arabi' scholar Stephen Hirtenstein and Roger Green
September 8-16, 2008

Stephen HirtensteinStephen Hirtenstein,
Director Anqa Publishing

"I have spent over 35 years researching and lecturing on the works of Ibn 'Arabi and his school. After graduating from Cambridge in History, I studied at the Beshara School of Intensive Esoteric Education in Scotland, and have been Editor of the Journal of the Muhyiddin Ibn 'Arabi Society since 1982.

In addition to running a publishing company dedicated to the work of Ibn 'Arabi, I am author of The Unlimited Mercifier (1999), a spiritual biography of Ibn 'Arabi, and co-translator of two of his short works (Divine Sayings, 2004, and The Seven Days of the Heart, 2000). For the last 6 years I have been involved in creating a digital archive of Ibn 'Arabi's manuscripts and am now editing several of his shorter works."

Once a year I run a tour to Anatolia for people to travel "in the footsteps" of Ibn 'Arabi, visiting the places he lived and wrote about."

The Sufi and Byzantine Worlds of Istanbul

blue mosqueIstanbul is one of the most beautiful and profound cities in the world. It is the only great city to span two continents – Europe and Asia – and perhaps no other city has such a rich texture of history, culture and spirituality. In its incarnation as Constantinople, it was a brilliant center of Byzantine Greek culture and, as the Ottoman capital, it had a great tradition of Sufism. As Samothrace lies only a few miles from the nautical boundary of Turkey, we have an invaluable opportunity to experience Istanbul in all its mystery and magnificence.

We will travel by bus from the port of Alexandroupolis to Istanbul, where we will meet with some of Turkey’s leading scholars of Sufism, continuing a theme from last year’s Esoteric Quest in Andalusia. For centuries, each of the 300 mosques of the city contained a lodge for wandering dervishes, and we will have the opportunity to experience the mystical practices of contemporary Sufis, heirs to the tradition of Rumi. Our guide will be Stephen Hirtenstein, scholar of Ibn ‘Arabi.

Among the city’s most striking features are The Blue Mosque, Hagia Sophia and Topkapi Palace, standing high above the Bosphorus on the Golden Horne. We will also explore the rich culture of Byzantium with its architecture and esoteric spirituality. Brian Cotnoir will lecture on Byzantine alchemy and we will sail along the shores of the Bosphorus viewing the castles and monuments that mark this place as one of the most significant in world history. Time will also be found to visit the vast Bazaar, eat in restaurants that exude Ottoman splendor, and glimpse the remains of the Roman Empire at its peak.

WE THEN continue onto Ephesus, Didyma and Miletus:
Oracles and Early Christianity From September 13th to 16th

ruinsOur Quest concludes in southwestern Turkey in an area filled with sites of great significance to both the culture of antiquity and the early years of Christianity. The Temple of Artemis of Ephesus was one of the Seven Wonders of the ancient world, and the site of a remarkable mystery center. A short distance from the Temple stand the remnants of St. John’s Basilica, marking the place where the Apostle John wrote his Gospel. Nearby are the extensive remnants of the Roman city of Ephesus and, above these ruins, stands the house thought to be the last home of Mary, mother of Jesus. After a day in Selcuk/Ephesus, we will travel to Didyma, site of an oracle devoted to Apollo and comparable in influence to Delphi. From there we go on to Miletus and Priene. These ruins are some of the best-preserved and most evocative in the Mediterranean and form a fitting conclusion to our Esoteric Quest.


Price for the Istanbul and Ephesus trip (September 8-16)
For those traveling from the main conference: $2070 per person for accommodations in a double room, $2340 for a single room. This cost includes the entire Istanbul trip outlined above, airfare from Istanbul to Izmir on September 13, bus travel from Izmir to Selcuk, accommodations for the nights of September 13–15 in Selcuk, all meals, English-speaking tour guides, ground transport and entrance fees to sites.

To book for the Conference and/or the Istanbul study tour BOOK here


For more information, please contact Andrea Lomanto at 1-212.219.2527 ext. 101, or write

Remember to quote your reference code to get the best price from Roger Green and Feng Shui Seminars
Code: RG08

Istanbul collage


Keith CritchlowKeith Critchlow is an internationally known lecturer and the author of numerous books including Order in Space and Time Stands Still. A leading expert on sacred architecture and sacred geometry, he is a former professor at the Royal College of Art and is connected to the Temenos Academy and The Prince’s School of Traditional Arts. He is Director of Studies for Kairos.



Scott OlsenScott Olsen, Ph.D., is the author of the recently published and award-winning book, The Golden Section: Nature’s Greatest Secret. He is Professor of Philosophy at Central Florida Community College, and is known internationally for his work on decoding the geometric mysteries of Plato. He is on the faculty of the Academy of Sacred Geometry based in the USA




Crystal Addey, M.A., researches the role of oracles and other forms of divination at the University of Bristol, England. Her areas of focus include mystery cults, the religions of late antiquity, and the role of oracles in the development of late Platonist philosophy. More

Christopher Bamford is the editorial director of SteinerBooks and Lindisfarne Press . He is the author of An Endless Trace: The Passionate Pursuit of Wisdom in the West, and has written numerous introductions to the works of Rudolf Steiner. Most recently, he co-authored Green Hermeticism: Alchemy and Ecology.

Steve Bass, M.A., is an architect in New York City and currently Visiting Assistant Professor of Architecture at Notre Dame University. A Fellow of the Institute of Classical Architecture, he teaches on aspects of proportion and geometry in design. His book Proportion in Architecture will be published next year.

statueBrian Cotnoir is an independent researcher. He has been studying and experimenting with alchemical procedures for 35 years. He is author of The Weiser’s Concise Guide to Alchemy. Brian will speak on Byzantine Alchemy in Istanbul.

Ellen Goldberg, M.A., is a psychotherapist, artist and mystic working within the Hermetic Tradition. She has been teaching Tarot at the New York Open Center for twenty years. Ellen is the director of the ‘School of Oracles,’ and writes on both these subjects. She has taught at five previous Open Center esoteric conferences.

Leonard George, Ph.D, is a Canadian psychologist, educator, author and broadcaster. His academic affiliations include Capilano College, Simon Fraser University and the University of British Columbia. Author of two books, he has focused for many years on the spirituality of antiquity. More

Clare Goodrick-Clarke is an honorary fellow of the University of Exeter, where she teaches the hermetic art of alchemy in the Master’s program in Western Esotericism. She is the co-author of G.R.S. Mead and the Gnostic Quest, which examines the gnostic inspiration of many of C.G Jung’s most powerful ideas. More

statueNicholas Goodrick-Clarke, D.Phil., is a professor of western esotericism at the University of Exeter and the author of many books on the Western esoteric tradition, including works on Swedenborg; Paracelsus and Blavatsky. His latest book, The Western Esoteric Traditions: A Historical Introduction, is published by Oxford University Press. More

Stephen Hirtenstein, M.A., is the author of The Unlimited Mercifier, a spiritual biography of Ibn ‘Arabi, and co-translator of two treatises by Ibn ‘Arabi, Divine Sayings and The Seven Days of the Heart. He led last year’s post-conference journey through Andalusia and will be our guide in Istanbul.

Alvin Holm, AIA, has been teaching classical architecture design since 1981. An architect in general practice with projects throughout the United States, he is a founder of the Institute of Classical Architecture and has taught at University of Pennsylvania and many other colleges.

Paulos Pissanos is the President of the Olympus International Cultural Centre, which aims to revitalize the ancient Greek spirit in modern education. He has produced hundreds of documentaries for Greek National Television, focusing on classical philosophy, archeology and history. His latest series was nominated for the Templeton Prize. More

Michael Poulantzas, Ph.D., is professor of Social Science at the Catholic University of St. Thomas Aquinas in Rome. A scholar of the Greek mysteries for many years, he has a strong interest in the politics of democracy in the Athenian Golden Age.

ruinsStanley Sfekas, Ph.D., is professor of Philosophy and Religion at the University of Indianapolis, Athens Campus. A scholar of Aristotelian Metaphyics, he has appeared in numerous documentary films and television programs as a philosophical consultant. He is also the educational adviser for the Fulbright Commission in Greece.

Theologos Simeoforos has been researching the esoteric significance and symbolic interpretation of the Greek language for over twenty years. The author of several books on the subject, he lectures at the People’s University of Athens and is adjunct Professor of Hellenic Philology at the Alpine University of Zurich.

Ralph White, Conference Director, is co-founder and creative director of the New York Open Center, one of America's leading institutions of holistic learning, and editor of Lapis Magazine Online. He has directed and organized a series of seven international conferences on Western Esotericism, of which this is the latest.


To book for the conference and / or the Istanbul study tour BOOK here


For more information, please contact Andrea Lomanto at 1-212.219.2527 ext. 101, or write

Remember to quote your reference code to get the best price from Roger Green and Feng Shui Seminars.
code: RG08