Robert John Stewart

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Author, composer and teacher R.J. Stewart

Robert John "R J" Stewart (1949-) is a Scottish-born composer, author, and teacher.[1] He has written over 40 books on occultism, Ceremonial magic and Celtic mythology. His books include a series on the underworld and faery traditions.

From 1980 to 1988, Stewart wrote two books about Merlin, translating and exploring medieval texts on the topic (now published in one volume as Merlin: the Prophetic Vision and Mystic Life, by Penguin Arkana). He also created the Merlin Tarot, (Harper Collins) comprising a book and a deck of cards (painted by Miranda Gray) depicting scenes from ancient Merlin texts. This deck and book have been translated into Japanese, French, Italian, and German.[citation needed]

From 1988 to the present, R J Stewart has taught workshops and classes on Celtic and Classical mythological traditions, music and consciousness. In 1993, he co-wrote Celtic Bards, Celtic Druids, (Published by Cassell, Blandford Press) with harper and storyteller Robin Williamson, founder of The Incredible String Band. R J Stewart is one of the very few people openly teaching the Faery (Fairy) Tradition which he has explored in the books: Living World of Faery, Earthlight, Power within the Land and the Well of Light. This later book has great relevance for the increasingly important practice of "Earth Healing" which has great relevance in our modern-day crisis. As folk musician “Bob Stewart”, he made famous a folk instrument of his own design referred to on his albums as a ‘concert psaltery’. The instrument is similar to a zither, and has groups of strings laid out left to right, in triad chord groups rather than as chromatic scales. Although this can make the instrument difficult to play at speed, complex chord progressions can be easily interwoven around a basic melody.

Discography[edit]

  • Bob Stewart - The Raggle Taggle Gypsies O [1] Traditional folk songs and dance music collected in England and America by Cecil Sharp. With Bob Stewart, Laraine Stewart, Albert Lightfoot, Stuart Gordon and Phil Harrison.
  • The Journey To The Underworld; To begin real inner work in a Celtic or Western Tradition, one must become an initiate and travel to the Underworld or Otherworld. On this tape, RJ Stewart offers a powerful visualization narrative which leads the listener (and participant) to this Underworld. He incorporates traditional contacts and symbols which resonate deeply and awaken awareness within. The traveler to the Underworld is transformed by the intensity of what he or she encounters. On the other side of the tape is original music by RJ for the 80 stringed concert psaltery, which complements the underworld narrative in mood and is perfect for meditational and ritual use.
  • The Unique Sound Of The Psaltery; You may have heard this instrument before, but not the 80 stringed concert psaltery designed by and built especially for RJ Stewart. It is accompanied here by other instruments (such as the cittern and flageolet) in a magical mix of traditional folk songs and original compositions by RJ which transport you to another time and place with each listening. This includes his instrumental music for The Hobbit, as read by Nicol Williamson.
  • Advanced Magical Arts; A three cassette set of five deeply transformative visualization narratives by RJ Stewart, with the sixth side including an incantation and meditational music on his 80 stringed concert psaltery. Don't expect cozy or comfortable encounters here. The places you travel to and contacts you meet in these tapes are both challenging and unpredictable, testing and transforming you in new ways each time you listen and participate. These visualizations are included in RJ's books, Advanced Magical Arts, Earth Light and The Power Within The Land and admirably accompany them. However, they are equally potent if used on their own.
  • Calling in the Elements: The Elemental Chants and Calls on this tape are based on a sacro-magical chant system developed by R J Stewart between 1972 and 1985. There is no requirement to be a musician or a singer to use these chants, they can be used without musical expertise. Many people now use this chant system throughout the world in their meditations, ceremonies, and for attuning physical locations and sacred sites. The Elemental Chants spring from an ancient musical and metaphysical tradition taught in Western magic and spiritual arts. The roots of this system are found in the writings of Plato, particularly The Republic. They relate to many magical systems in the Northern hemisphere and are described in detail in R J Stewart's books Music and the Elemental Psyche and Music Power Harmony.

The following tapes(originally distributed in the UK) are not currently available but will come into US distribution later this year:

  • Cuchulainn: Performed by Van Morrison with Faye Howard. Epic ancient Irish poetry performed by the legendary Irish songwriter and singer. Extracts from the Cuchulainn saga filled with magic, drama, tragedy and comedy. Adapted and produced by RJ Stewart from his book Cuchulainn.
  • Magical Tales: By RJ Stewart. A collection of magical tales read by the author ranging from the distant past to the probable future. From the book Magical Tales. Set of four cassettes. NOT CURRENTLY AVAILABLE.
  • Eldritch: Original instrumental music to carry you into other worlds. The cassette edition of RJ Stewart's astonishing album, featuring a large band of musicians on psaltery, electric and acoustic guitars, bass, drums, and percussion, flute, strings, piano, banjo, uilleann pipes, mandolin, digital synthesizer, rebecs, cittern and unearthly voices.
  • The Western Way: By John and Caitlin Matthews. Based upon their two-volume book, The Western Way (Arkana), John and Caitlin Matthews read a series of meditations, exercises, instruction and guided visualizations enriched with music on the Celtic harp. This recording is recommended to those wishing to develop within the ancient and potent Western esoteric tradition.
  • The Crystal Boat: Read by Gareth Knight. An original Innerworld journey, written by Roma Wilby, and read by one of Europe's leading authorities on white magic. This visualization has been used at large group gatherings with dramatic results and works just as effectively for individual development of the imagination and inner faculties.
  • A Quest for Arthur: By Geoffrey Ashe. Britain's leading author on Arthurian subjects gives his popular talk on the legend and reality of King Arthur. This recording is drawn from Geoffrey Ashe's many books and synthesizes his extensive knowledge into an informative and entertaining talk.
  • On A Deserted Shore: By Kathleen Raine. A major poem by one of our most profound and influential poets and scholars. Kathleen Raine, who has been publishing poetry for over forty years, is an authority on William Blake. Her work has been translated into many languages and she is known worldwide as a speaker and lecturer who upholds spiritual values. This unique recording of her reading includes original music on the 80 stringed concert psaltery, composed and performed by RJ Stewart.
  • More Magical Songs; By RJ Stewart. Original and traditional magical songs, performed RJ with guest musicians. Two powerful traditional magical ballads are included: Tam Lin and Thomas Rhymer, plus many of the songs that RJ has written and performed for various theater and media productions.
  • The Rollright Ritual; By W.G. Gray (mono). This astonishing recording, first released in 1975 features the author and a group of ritualists enacting his famous Rollright Ritual based upon the legends and spirit of a megalithic site in Oxfordshire. Side two contains RJ Stewart's first recording of Magical Songs, with many guest musicians.
  • Citterning; By RJ Stewart. A tutor tape for players of mandolin, bouzouki, mandola or cittern. Includes expert tuition and examples on side one and a full side of instrumental music with cittern, mandocello, uilleann pipes, violins and other instruments on side two. Features the virtuoso violin playing of Pete Cooper and Stuart Gordon.

Bibliography[edit]

  • The Way of Merlin
  • The Miracle Tree
  • Living Magical Arts
  • Advanced Magical Arts
  • The Underworld Initiation
  • The Living World of Faery
  • Power within the Land
  • Earth Light
  • The Spiritual Dimensions of Music
  • Celebrating the Male Mysteries
  • Celtic Gods, Celtic Goddesses
  • Walker Between Worlds

References[edit]

External links[edit]