The Four Pillars

The Temple of the Magdalene (aka Authentic Freedom Academy) is firmly rooted in the four pillars of:

  • Spirituality
  • Science
  • Psychology
  • Education

The Temple of the Magdalene is founded on the belief that pillars are not meant to contain or control but are intended to uplift while providing ongoing encouragement and support. It is a model based on empowerment, not on oppression.

Psychology – specifically Human Development

The primary focus of the Temple of the Magdalene is to provide education, resources, and tools which support human beings in becoming self-actualized. Self-actualization, a term first coined by Kurt Goldstein and then popularized by Abraham Maslow, is a process by which human beings are compelled toward reaching their full potential.  Maslow defined self-actualization as:

            Self-actualization (also referred to as self-realization or self-cultivation) can be described as the complete realization of one’s potential as manifest in peak experiences which involve the full development of one’s abilities and appreciation for life. (Maslow, 1962)

Self-actualized people know:

  • Who they are.
  • How they are uniquely gifted.
  • How they are called to live out those gifts for the sake of their own fulfillment and in service to the betterment of the world.

Furthermore, self-actualized people have found a deep sense of inner contentment, along with a sense of meaning and purpose in their lives. Becoming self-actualized is the ultimate fulfillment of the human journey.


Spirituality is inherent in every person. Each one of us is driven by an invisible force that compels us to seek meaning and purpose in our lives. Connecting with this invisible force (however we define or identify that force) helps us to access inner guidance, knowledge, understanding, contentment, and peace. The Temple of the Magdalene supports the unique spiritual journey and spiritual development of each individual by providing tools and practices that are universal and free of doctrine or dogma.  Here western and eastern contemplative practices meet, providing a path consistent with our increasingly wholistic and secular world.  Instead of experiencing these practices through the lens of division, we find union in an open dialog and exploration of all the ways in which human beings have nurtured this inherent yearning to explore mystery. In this way, we are empowered to discover our own truth along with the path of our highest good.


History has shown us the endurance of spiritual/contemplative practices including mindfulness, meditation, silence, and contemplation, and the benefits experienced by those dedicated to these practices. With recent advances in science, specifically neurobiology, we can now see the proof of what before were only theories based on subjective observation.  Through the science of such pioneers as Zinn, Davidson, and Newberg, the Temple of the Magdalene has found validation and support for our methods.


With training in adult education, developmental psychology, spiritual formation, and project-based learning, Lauri Ann Lumby, founder, and spiritual director of the Temple of the Magdalene, has created an experiential learning model that is adaptable to the individual learning style and temperament of each participant. One-on-one support provides the additional resources that guarantee that the individual needs of each client and student are met and their formative desires fulfilled.

Putting it All Together

Through a solid foundation built upon the four pillars of psychology, spirituality, science and education, The Temple of the Magdalene provides a comprehensive approach to the process of human development.  Self-actualization is supported through our online classes, workshops, books, community gatherings and one-on-one support. 

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