Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh (1931–1990) began teaching publically in the 1960s.  Bhagwan criticized socialism and Gandhian politics and challenged many traditional Hindu values. His talks seemed to synthesize and illuminate the teachings of various religious traditions. He was an advocate of free love, he blended psychotherapy and meditation, and held civilizational aspirations that framed his movement as the catalyst for a global transformation that would end war, violence, sectarianism and hunger. Many of his talks are available on YouTube. Despite being… Read more

You cannot walk far in Vancouver without seeing the remnants of the Pre-European forest. Silent tombstones, towering sentinels. Some take on the guise of faces from the notches cut in the bark to insert planks so that the faller could get above the swell of the base. Often, these unassuming stumps host their ecologies. Moss, lichen, liverworts, ferns. Sometimes their crowns grow what looks like a head of hair of salal or huckleberry. Walking near the Seymour River after church… Read more

Above the altar of the Blessed Sacrament Chapel of Saint James Anglican Church, where I serve, is a painting of Bottichelli’s Santa Maria Maddalena de’Pazzi. When I lead morning and evening prayer on Wednesdays and Sundays the painting speaks of the ‘Yes’ that Mary gave to God and the Holy Spirit during that encounter. The posture of deference that the angel holds, is always striking to me, as well as the European rather than Semitic setting. This year, the Feast of… Read more

But once we decide to sit in the desert and let its subtle energies work on us, rather than immediately go about trying to transform it, the desert blossoms as a rose before our very eyes and we see the beauty that is already there. Read more

As the Age of the Anthropocene ripens, debates over how to respond are raging. Behind the disparate strategies are two foundational stories about the nature of the natural world. On the one hand is the very old idea that the world is a super-organism. Mutualism, cooperation, and interconnection are the dominant adjectives to describe this world. That the parts are integral to an intricate whole. This has manifest in ideas like the World-Soul, the Ecosystem, and more recently Gaia Theology…. Read more

[SPOILERS] I suppose it was appropriate to the theme that it was pouring rain as I approached the theatre. After the Oscar buzz of The Shape of Water, Mexican director Guillermo Del Toro’s new fantasy film, I had to brave the water and see it. It was gorgeously imagined, shot and performed, and nods to monster movies and romantic classics. The final scene, however, was something of a jolt to my eco-spiritual sensibilities. The film revolves around a white woman… Read more

In this New Year, may we take the time to both be and become. May we drink of the rich beauty of this life with all the excitement of a fresh sapling. First, acknowledging the Author of all life, that loved us into being. And then, by doing something, even a small something, each day to care for the earth, the poor, the vulnerable and the weak and to stand for justice. May each day be a cup that overflows… Read more

To empty the self is to dig down to the source of the living waters that bubble up at the core of our being, where God is continually present to us and in fact creating us at each moment. Read more

There is a kind of ‘surface tension’ to the Mass. By this, I mean that church can be boring when you stay on the surface, like a spiritual water strider bug. But I have found that if you just relax your mind and heart a bit, treat it more like meditation, and allow yourself to sink into the poetic, embodied, elemental, and rhythmic flow of the liturgy you will never reach the bottom of its spiritual depth, beauty, and mystery. Read more

While Breaking Bad features many beautiful scenes of the desert. If Walt is an anti-hero, then Walt’s cherished desert is an anti-spiritual ecology. Read more

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