posthumes Böhme-Portrait um 1730


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Colloquiums and Conferences of the Jacob Boehme Society

We regularly host conferences on Boehme's thinking in the context of German spiritual, philosophical and linguistic traditions, as well as other European and non-European intellectual and mystical traditions. The conference proceedings are published annually. Please see the link for further details.


For a detailed description of the conferences we have organised so far, see below.


2005     2007     2011     2012     2014     2016     2017



Dawn Ascending - Conference 2012              

Book Publication (in German)                 Conference Flyer

Conference of the International Jacob-Böhme-Institute Görlitz

On the Occasion of the 400th Anniversary of the Original Draft of Böhme's Aurora

"Morgen Röte im Auffgang" (Dawn Ascending) was the title chosen by Böhme for his first major work, which later came to be known as 'Aurora'. The title page was dated June 12, 1612. However, the work was not completed at that point; it was still unfinished when it was confiscated by the city's authorities a year later. Yet, it turned out to be Böhme's most incisive work that was to have a major impact on his life: the public now recognized the humble shoemaker's remarkable character -- some perceived him as a dangerous heretic, others regarded him as an inspired visionary.

On the occasion of the 400th anniversary of the first draft of the Aurora, we set up a conference in honour of one of the key representatives of Germany's rich tradition of mystical thinkers, who is at the same time one of the most remarkable representatives of mystical thought in Europe. Albeit unknown to many, his writings had a resonance far beyond German borders, both in the East (Russia) and in the West (US and GB). With this conference, we want to draw attention to Jakob Böhme and his work, whose marginal role in contemporary philosophical debates is anything but justified.

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Via Regia Book Shop, Brüderstraße 3, 02826 Görlitz
7 pm: "... got into a hard melancholy and sadness..." - Readings from the Aurora
(Dieter Liebig, Michael Prochnow, Volker Richter)

Friday, June 8, 2012

Kulturhistorisches Museum, Barockhaus Neißstraße 30, 02826 Görlitz
17 pm: Address of Welcome. On the Genesis and Distribution of Aurora (Dr. Günther Bonheim/Maienfels)
18 pm: Approaching Jacob Böhme - Work in Progress: First Drafts of the Film & Other Reflections (Ronald Steckel, Max Hopp & Klaus Weingarten)

Saturday, June 9, 2012

Kulturhistorisches Museum, Barockhaus Neißstraße 30, 02826 Görlitz

10 am: 'Despicable Blasphemies': Paul Nagel's Use of Böhme's Unpublished Aurora in his Prodromus astronomiae apocalypticae (1620) (Dr. Leigh Penman/Oxford)
11 am: Aurora 400 Years Later: What We Learn by Translating (Prof. Dr. Andrew Weeks/Illinois)
12 pm: The First English Edition of Boehme's Aurora (1656) and its Translator, John Sparrow (1615-1670) of Essex (Dr. Ariel Hessayon/London)

Lunch Break

2 pm: Jacob Böhme as a Network Thinker. The Idea of the Seven Source Spirits ('Quellgeister') in the Morgenröte (Prof. Dr. Bo Andersson/Uppsala)
3 pm: On the "Law to Do Justice": The Reflection of the Religious 'Other' in Böhme's Aurora (Kristine Hannak (M.A.)/ Halle-Wittenberg)
4 pm: Other Dawns (Dr. Thomas Regehly/Offenbach am Main)
Final debate and Concluding Remarks


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Philosophies of the Will - Colloquium 2007    book publication (available in German only)

Böhme, Schelling, Schopenhauer

2nd Colloquium of the International Jacob Böhme Institute, in collaboration with the Schopenhauer Society.

June 22-24, 2007, at Schlesisches Museum zu Görlitz, Untermarkt 4, 02826 Görlitz, Germany.
Friday, June 22, 5.30 – 8pm:

Keynote lecture: Prof. Dr. Andrew Weeks (Normal/ Illinois): Böhme, Paracelsus and the Sources for the Metaphysics of the Will

Dr. Donata Schoeller (Zurich): Böhme and Schelling

Saturday, June 23 9 – 12.30 am

Dr. Günther Bonheim (Wüstenrot): "For the cause of the suffering of the damned is their will." Böhme's philosophy of the will in the tradition of Biblical exegesis

Dr. Marta Kopij (Wroclaw): Böhme, Novalis and Schelling in Polish Romanticism

Prof. Wojciech Kunicki (Wroclaw): Böhme and Schopenhauer in Fin de Siècle Polish Literature

3 – 5 am
Prof. Dr. Lore Hühn (Freiburg): The Concept of the Will in Schelling and Schopenhauer

Michael Gerhard (Mainz): The Mirror Cabinet of Nothingness – Wille, Ungrund, maśī’ah, fanā’, brahman and nirvāna

8 – 10 pm Public Evening Lecture
Prof. Dr. Karol Sauerland (Warszaw): The Problem of the Will Around the Turn of the 19th/20th Century

Sunday, 24 June9 am – 1 pm

Dr. Thomas Regehly (Offenbach): Fabula docet. From the Oupnek'hat through Irenaeus to Böhme, Schelling and Schopenhauer

Prof. Dr. Matthias Koßler (Mainz): "Nothingness" between Philosophy and Mysticism in Schopenhauer

Final Discussion

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Mysticism and Exegesis      book publication (available only in German) Photographs

November 18-20, 2005

The colloquium focused on two areas that are significant for understanding Böhme's work: textual exegesis and mystical experience.

The foundation of his personal faith, Böhme's writings contained paradoxes and dark passages which required elucidation through interpretation; beyond textual exegesis, however, there was the realm of mystical experience: a deeply felt sensation of oneness with creation and the interconnectedness of everything. Many mystics around the world have struggled to communicate their experiences in language, which Böhme chose to describe as the "breaking of the spirit into the innermost birth of the godhead."

The conference papers explored these two crucial areas whilst considering parallel concepts in non-Christian traditions.


Friday, November 18, 2005

6:30 – 9 pm

Address of welcome by IJBI's academic director, Dr. Günther Bonheim

Dr. Jakub Mirkiewicz (Wrocław): Knowledge of Nature as a Mystical Experience in Paracelsus

Dr. Sibylle Rusterholz (Boll): Elements of the Kabbalah in Jacob Böhme 

Saturday, November 19, 2005

9:00 – 12:30 pm

Dr. Günther Bonheim (Maienfels/Görlitz): Scoffer Ismael and his Children. Jacob Böhme's Understanding of Islam

Dr. Axel Monte (Köln): "The Third Scripture" or "The Writ of the Heart" [On Scriptural understanding in Islamic Mysticism]

Dr. Donata Schoeller Reisch (Unterengstringen): On the Relationship Between Thinking and Reality. Jacob Böhme, Martin Heidegger, Gene Gendlin          

15:00 – 17:00 pm

Dr. Horst Folkers (Freiburg): Understanding Text and Self

PD Dr. Reiner Manstetten (Heidelberg): Meister Eckhart's Method of Interpreting Scripture

20:00 – 21:00 pm

Address of Welcome by IJBI's Chairman Prof. Dr. Eckehard Binas

Public Lecture: Prof. Dr. Jósef Kosian (Wrocław): Jacob Böhme and Angelus Silesius

Sunday, November 20th, 2005

9:00 – 13:00 pm

Dr. Hermann-Josef Röllicke (Düsseldorf): The Buddha's Language Thinking: Interpretation and Translation of a Didactic Play from Early Chan-Buddhism in China in the Lankāvatāra-sūtra.

Prof. Dr. Ana Agud (Salamanca): [Translation and Commentary of Select Hymns by Kashmiri Philosopher Abhinavagupta] (Working Title)

Dr. Thomas Regehly (Offenbach): Ardor, the Warrior of Light? - Gnostic Elements in Walter Benjamin's Early Writings.

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