Automatic Diploma

JFKU Law School

Future Looking
1979

Since I only needed two credits in biology to receive a Minor, I
decided to take a class in Botany. Half way through the class I
received my diploma in the mail. CMU automatically graduated me once I
satisfied the minimum requirements. With my diploma in hand, I decided
my time with Carin was more valuable than completing a post-graduation Minor.
But, it was also at that time that I became preoccupied with a brochure that I
found pinned to the bulletin board on the wall outside the Philosophy
Department. It described a graduate program in mysticism and
consciousness. Of course, Carin was sure that my unexpected diploma
and the opportunity to continue my education in my chosen field (her
interpretation) were far from coincidental. According to her, I had to
check it out. It was written in my stars.

John F. Kennedy University was a 15-year-old university located in
Orinda, California. It was the first in the country to be founded
specifically for older students (most of the students were going
through a midlife career change). The faculty, for the most part, had
PhD’s from prestigious universities, and, more importantly (from my
perspective at least), JFKU had an accredited graduate degree program
that offered Masters degrees in either Comparative Mysticism,
Parapsychology or Transpersonal Counseling. All programs were
interdisciplinary with a strong emphasis in liberal arts, humanistic
values and practical experience. In fact, each curriculum had three
dimensions: theorizing/cognitive, practical/active, and
spiritual/experiential. When it came to learning about religion and
consciousness you didn’t just learn to think the thoughts of other
people, you also received practical training.

The student was required, in the experiential dimension of the
curriculum, to participate in some form of spiritual practice.
Students were also expected to participate in periodic gatherings with
faculty and other students to discuss their progress. JFKU wasn’t just
another degree mill. Balance in the cognitive, professional, and
experiential approaches to education was stressed. I was so impressed
with their literature that I applied to the program

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About bwinwnbwi

About me: Marvin Gaye’s song, "What’s Going On" was playing on the jukebox when I went up to the counter and bought another cup of coffee. When I got back, the painting on the wall next to where I was sitting jumped out at me, the same way it had done many times before. On it was written a diatribe on creativity. It was the quote at the bottom, though, that brought me back to this seat time after time. The quote had to do with infinity; it went something like this: Think of yourself as being in that place where infinity comes together in a point; where the infinite past and the infinite future meet, where you are at right now. The quote was attributed to Hermann Hesse, but I didn’t remember reading it in any of the books that I had read by him, so I went out and bought Hesse’s last novel, Magister Ludi. I haven’t found the quote yet, but I haven't tired of looking for it either.
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2 Responses to Automatic Diploma

  1. ElizOF says:

    Sounds quite brilliant… Is this real? 🙂

    • bwinwnbwi says:

      The concept is brilliant. I don’t know if JFKU is still going strong or not. When I was there the classes were housed in a High School by day, a Graduate school by night and weekends. I sat in on two or three classes when I biked up the coast. I write about my impressions. Stay tuned.

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