The Lyceum of today supports the Spiritualists’ National Union and its seven principles. The Lyceum became a branch of the SNU in 1948, being given special responsibility for the education of the young. It promotes a religious philosophy that teaches us how to live. We embrace the Natural World and all the elements of this world, and the Lyceum teaches Social and Humanitarian skills.
Lyceum groups of today are formed of varying age groups and with diverse purposes. Some have formed groups to aid each other with SNU coursework and the resultant discussions can be most edifying. Others are engaged in study, and some of the children’s groups have produced marvellous examples of Spiritualists in action. There are virtually no Lyceums which cling to calisthenics (traditionally found in Lyceums), the modern equivalents are Ti Chi and some dance groups. There are meditation groups, yoga groups and some developing groups, Lyceumists are encouraged to go out and visit places of interest together and to occasionally have meals together, either in the church setting or outside. They are encouraged to take part in church activities either as chair or though administrative activities, or as speakers or demonstrators.
Churches were at one time encouraged to start a Lyceum for the obvious reason that it provided a teaching ground for the newer members of the church. This is still the case and the Lyceum movement is growing once again. The lyceum can be and should be a place of learning and fun.
The changing world has forced the Lyceum, as well as lots of other organisations, to think again. What was acceptable to the Lyceumists in the 1800’s is not really as useful today. Many of the things that the Lyceum had used over many years is still of use and has been kept, but other areas have had to be revisited. The Lyceum Manual has been kept because the readings and songs contained in it have not been bettered since it was written, similarly the education scheme ideas were kept but the schemes themselves were not. All together an attempt has been made to improve the modern image of the Lyceum Ideal.
The education system has also been overhauled and there are now two courses for Lyceumists to consider. Also the SNU had instituted CSNU(e) and DSNU(e) awards for Lyceums.