Lectures and classes


Feast of Fools


Feast of Fools is a two-headed event series with the aim of putting real magic and spiritual tools into the hands of everyday people. Together with a rotating cast of guest lecturers, my mission has been to grow and awaken the spiritual current of New York City and the world. Anyone who becomes a regular presenter at these events takes a “Foolish” name. I’m the Abbot of Unreason. My wife is Pope Joan II.

The project is named for a medieval festival that handed over the powers of church and state to common people for a day. In keeping with the tradition of its namesake, each event is a magical working aimed at putting the tools of the mighty into the hands of everyday people.  Whether you are a seasoned practitioner or just looking for a point of entry into the art and science of mysticism, you will find something to satisfy your appetite at the Feast of Fools. To stay updated on new events in this series, keep an eye on our Facebook page.

Starting in April 2013, this series ran every two weeks without interruption until November, when my event team and I decided to start spacing them further apart to allow for bigger events.

We had already done panels, lectures, film screenings, and open mics, but our December 2013 event, “Yeast of Yules” was our first large scale project. This all-day winter bazaar and holiday bake sale climaxed with a brief talk about solstice traditions in Northern Europe, followed by a set of folk music and wintery tales.


Browsing at Yeast of Yules.


Little Viking Design was a big hit at Yeast of Yules with exquisitely made drinking horns, rune sets, jewelry and more!


Marg Vérité offered a wide range of ceramics to our revelers at Yeast of Yules. Suitable for both ritual use and everyday eating!


Our spread at Yeast of Yules. Jule Kage, fresh cranberry sauce with cinnamon, cloves, and allspice, pumpkin bread and sugar cookies shaped like various sacred animals … all baked by Pope Joan II and the Abbot of Unreason.


Pope Joan II and the Abbot of Unreason, about to step out for a little Yuletide mumming.


Seattle Esoteric Book Conference 2014


As a speaker at Seattle Esoteric Book Conference 2014, I presented a lecture entitled “Drinking from the Haunted Well: A mystical exploration in the Fairy Land of A. E. Waite.”

Golden Dawn alum Arthur Edward Waite is commonly remembered for his long and technical tomes of scholarly mysticism. It might surprise many modern readers to learn that his body of work also contains a beautifully interwoven mythos of esoteric Romances, set in a visionary realm of fairies. Waite carried this secret kingdom in his heart throughout his life, even into his late, post-Golden Dawn work.

In this talk, I explored how Waite’s largely ignored fiction, drama, and poetry can be used to better understand the challenging concepts we encounter in his “Holy Grail,” “Holy Kabbalah,” and other non-fiction works.

Praise for Drinking from the Haunted Well:

“Stuart presented an in depth look at the fantastical writing of A. E. Waite. It was amazingly coherent, covering a lot of material. It cast Waite into a very interesting light, encouraging one to do some reading of Waite. It, the talk, had implications for the place of myth in spiritual practice; how much more satisfying are the elliptical and challenging than the doctrinal and dogmatic.”

— Michael E. Bacon, Co-organizer of GnosticNYC