Following the Path

I think a lot about the trend toward more and more people identifying themselves as "spiritual but not religious." I know this polarizes a lot of people — some churchgoers, even liberal ones like UCC Minister Lillian Daniel, dismiss this kind of spirituality as symptomatic of our culture of narcissism; while other folks, like Rabbi Rami Shapiro, see it as a positive sign: a sign of being (in Rabbi Rami's words) "spiritually independent." Here's another way to look at it: some folks blame the … [Read more...]

How to Grow a Mandala

My wife pointed me to this video. Well worth watching — and trying out.   … [Read more...]

Dr. Charles Raison on Compassion & Meditation

Here's a video well worth watching. Dr. Charles Raison was, up until recently, an assistant professor in the Mind-Body Program, Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Emory University School of Medicine. He also served as a mental health expert for CNN. I first learned about Dr. Raison because of his involvement with the contemplative studies initiative at Emory, which seeks to explore and document the health benefits of meditation. … [Read more...]

“Eleven years of Catholic education had told me nothing about Christian meditation.”

Here's an interesting article published the other day in the Utah Statesman by a fellow named Michael Sowder: Finding Home in India. The author tells the story of his spiritual journey, and it's a story I've heard again and again. Basically, it runs like this: born into a Christian family, Sowder (and countless others like him) finds himself befuddled by the sterile Christian education he received as a child. Eventually he  goes on to find meaning and insight in contemplative spirituality … [Read more...]

A Chat with a Methodist Minister

The other day at the Abbey Store I struck up a conversation with a Methodist minister who was making a short retreat at the Monastery. We chatted up books and authors and it became apparent that we had a similar interest in contemplative spirituality. "So tell me," I asked him, "What is it like to advocate for contemplative spirituality in your congregation?" He smiled ruefully. "It's not easy," he said. "Are people afraid of it?" I wondered, mindful of the small but vocal presence of … [Read more...]

A Few Thoughts on Psalm 46:10 (Cedar Hill Blog)

Hello friends. I've recently written a post for the Cedar Hill Blog. Cedar Hill is a wonderful retreat center located in Gainesville, GA; I will be leading a day of reflection and renewal centered on contemplation and interfaith spirituality on Saturday, April 2. If you live within shouting distance (or, better yet, driving distance), I hope I'll see you there. Here's the link to the blog post: The Essential and Necessary Link Between Contemplation and Peacemaking. And here's a bit more about … [Read more...]

Quote for the Day

The basic definition of meditation is "having a steady mind." In meditation, when your thoughts go up, you don't go up, and you don't go down when your thoughts go down. Whether your thoughts are good or bad, exciting or boring, blissful or miserable, you let them be. You don't accept some and reject others. You have a sense of greater space that encompasses any thought that may arise. — Chögyam Trungpa, Shambhala: The Sacred Path of the Warrior … [Read more...]


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