Plain as the Nose

Sometimes, things are so obvious that your humble servant here simply misses them altogether. This is one of the gifts of contemplative practice: when I slow down long enough to actually remind myself that I am a breathing organism who continues to live and love solely by the grace of God, among other things I'm giving my brain a chance to catch up with my normal speed-of-life distracted self.This morning, just as my wife and I were chanting the words by which we begin our prayer every morning … [Read more...]

Quote for the Day

The Christian religion is primarily about a transformation of consciousness. This takes spiritual practice and the cultivation of wisdom. In another time this was called cultivating the supernatural organism, what Paul called "a new creation." So the main thing is to be transformed into God, what the early church called deification, theosis, divinization. — Thomas Keating, OCSO, Spirituality, Contemplation & Transformation: Writings on Centering Prayer N.B.: This is a quotation from a l … [Read more...]

Celtic/Mystic, part two

The always well-connected Mike Morrell, in response to what I wrote yesterday about Christian mysticism and Celtic spirituality, muses: Popular consciousness ... tends to lump Celtic Christians and Contemplative Christians in the same corner, whether as an admirer (like myself) or a detractor. Mike, I certainly understand. Celtic spirituality, whether Christian, pre-Christian, or non-Christian, is often described by both its advocates and its critics as "mystical." So for the longest time I … [Read more...]


Wow. My short little notice of John O'Donohue's death keeps getting the hits, a week after his passing. Welcome to everyone who has found my blog through that posting, and I hope you'll stick around.Lately I've really been writing a lot more about Christian mysticism in general rather than Celtic Christianity in particular, which is a reflection not only of where I've been spiritually in recent months, but also the fact that I'm currently writing a book on Christian mysticism. But I am … [Read more...]

Philip Carr-Gomm

I have just discovered Philip Carr-Gomm's blog.Philip is a Druid, in fact he's the chief of OBOD (the Order of Bards, Ovates, and Druids). His writing is filled with gentle wisdom and clear insight into the philosophical dimensions of Celtic wisdom. I particularly recommend The Druid Way. Throughout his writings I've always found a deep hospitality and honoring of all positive wisdom traditions.Click here to check out his blog. … [Read more...]


Here are two of my favorite verses in the Hebrew scriptures: Delight yourself in the LORD and he will give you the desires of your heart. — Psalm 37:4The LORD your God is with you, he is mighty to save. He will take great delight in you, he will quiet you with his love, he will rejoice over you with singing. — Zephaniah 3:17 I don't know about you, but in all my experience growing up in a stick-in-the-mud Lutheran Church no one ever suggested to me that spirituality is all about God taking del … [Read more...]

Ye Watchers and Ye Holy Ones

When I was studying the cosmology of Wicca, one of the most fascinating concepts to me was that of the egregore, or "group mind." When a group of people gathered for a common purpose, particularly if it were spiritual in nature, their collective psychic energy would begin to coalesce into an organic form of transpersonal consciousness that would remain silently present in the midst of the group's activity. The egregore would be located in a particular place, typically where the group gathered … [Read more...]