The Fringe Library

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Karezza: A Guide to Sexual Mysticism, Magic, and Creativity

By Alice Bunker Stockham M.D.

Alice Bunker Stockham (1833-1912) was one of the first female M.D.s in the United States. In her remarkable _Karezza_, she develops her theory of secular sexual mysticism in relation to human creativity. In this seminal book of Stockham, we see a particularly American kind of pragmatic esoteric praxis. An important figure in the history of sexual mysticism, Stockham insisted that the practice of karezza, a special kind of sexual union, was a key to mysticism, magic, and creativity. Like John Humphrey Noyes before her, like William James, and like the later American pioneers of consciousness in the second half of the twentieth century, Stockham was concerned not only with results and effects for the individual, but also with the potential transformation of the whole of human society.Introduced by Arthur Versluis, author of several dozen books, many on mysticism or esoteric religious or literary traditions.