A Brighter Shade of Green

bright-green

In honor of Earth Day, I wanted to share an article written by my former colleague Ross Robertson for EnlightenNext magazine called “A Brighter Shade of Green: Rebooting Environmentalism for the 21stCentury.” His brilliant insights about this important topic really changed the way I think about the environmental challenges that we’re facing. In fact, through many conversations with him, he brought me to see these challenges in a completely new way. He opened my eyes … [Read more...]

The Only Place in the Universe

Star_swirl

I had my first spiritual experience when I was 16 years old. I was sitting up late one night having a conversation with my mother about something I can’t remember, when for no apparent reason, the doors of perception opened WIDE. In no time I was swept up in an ocean of ecstasy that seemed infinite. I also experienced many insights that unfolded one after the other. One of them was very interesting. It became apparent to me that all points in space are exactly the same place. In other … [Read more...]

Free Your Mind (and Your Body Will Follow)

wall_punch

I just returned from spending a weekend with my friend Peter Ragnar at his farm in Kentucky. Peter is a modern-day Shaman, Taoist wizard, natural life scientist, and “self-master” par excellence. He claims to be a senior citizen, but refuses to give away his age because he “doesn’t believe in it.” In this short clip from a longer interview he and I did over Skype several weeks ago, he describes a remarkable metaphysical intervention that occurred during one of his … [Read more...]

A Theologian of Renewal

plant soil hands

With Easter and Passover on the minds of so many millions of Christians and Jews this weekend, so are the deeper themes of renewal, promise, and liberation that these religious holidays represent. In light of this, I wanted to share a beautiful profile that my friend and colleague Carter Phipps wrote for  EnlightenNext magazine on Georgetown University Catholic theologian John Haught, who has put an interesting evolutionary twist on the concept of renewal.Haught, who's life and work have … [Read more...]

Progress or Pessimism: How Should We Think about the Future?

optimist_pessimist

Over the past couple of years, my thinking has been greatly influenced by the "Prophets of Progress"—people like Stephen Pinker, Matt Ridley, Stephen Johnson, Hans Rosling, and Peter Diamandis to name a few. And I have written about their ideas extensively on this blog. Personally, I've been inspired by their persistent optimism about where we're headed in the future, even in the face of so much pessimism in progressive culture today.My student and colleague Carter Phipps, who is the author o … [Read more...]

Why the World Needs More Spiritual Heroes

hero_BigThink2

Here's a published dialogue that I did with my friend Deepak Chopra in which we discuss the challenges of standing up for Spirit in a secular culture. Enjoy! __________________________________ ANDREW COHEN: What I wanted to speak with you about, Deepak, is what it really means to be a spiritual hero. This is kind of a bold and audacious idea. But especially now that there are so many people looking for ways to step forward to make the world a better place, I think that more and more of … [Read more...]

The New Spiritual Ideal

New Paradigm

After I finished giving a lecture at the 2009 Parliament of the World’s Religions in Melbourne, an American rabbi approached me. “I’ve been following your work for some years now,” he said, “and you’re doing something very important. You are defining a new position for spiritual aspirants, uniquely suited for the time we are living in. You’re calling all of us to assume a position of ‘radical indeterminacy’ as the very goal of our spiritual … [Read more...]

Zen and the Art of Conviction

THE DUDE

There’s always something electric in the atmosphere when someone dares to assert spiritual convictions in a decidedly secular context. It’s almost like, “I can’t believe s/he had the courage to say that!” That’s why I was so interested when I heard that Jeff Bridges, aka “The Dude,” was going to be on The Daily Show with Jon Stewart last week speaking about his new book, The Dude and the Zen Master, which features a series of conversations between … [Read more...]

A New Kind of Human Being

Butterfly

In recent years, the term "emergence" has become popular among scientists to describe the seemingly inexplicable leaps that occur in the evolutionary process when greater complexity bursts forth from lesser complexity. For example, the material universe miraculously burst forth from primordial emptiness. Something came from nothing. That’s emergence. Approximately 3.8 billion years ago, biological life emerged from apparently dead matter. How did that momentous leap occur? That’s … [Read more...]

2013, Or What to Do When the Apocalypse Doesn’t Arrive

New year 2013 is coming

I recently published a post titled, “The World is Getting Worse (And Other Lies)” in which I shared some inspiring data and anecdotes that have helped me to embrace what I consider to be “The Good News of Progress.” What does that mean? In short, the world is getting better—not worse, as many often suggest these days. . . especially as we've neared the dreaded apocalypse date of December 21st, 2012. In response to the post, I received a wide range of very … [Read more...]


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