Bridging the Divide

While it is a bit of an oversimplification, there are essentially two perspectives within institutional Christianity. One says that belief is a matter of memorizing facts, scripture, and doctrine. Success in this view is like passing a final exam. Entering through the gates of heaven in this view involves taking a test on an IPad.…

Can We Stop It, Please?

Oh yes, everyone is wounded. Me too. I understand. You have all been broken and it's terribly unfair. Of course we all haven't been wounded in the same degree or in the same way, nevertheless we are wounded. Someone or several someones have damaged us unfairly. It never should have happened. Can we stipulate to…

Moral Bankruptcy?

I haven't written in a while because I have been thinking about the current world situation. From a spiritual perspective, we seem to be in a period of moral bankruptcy stemming from all moral questions being profoundly oversimplified. The cause of that reductionism is neither on the left or the right alone. Rather, it's everywhere.…

Basic Truths

I am coming to believe that, in nondual thought, there are advanced basic truths. If you feel some resistance to that statement, it may be because you don't feel that "advanced" and "basic" can exist together in the same space. We have been trained to believe in an either/or universe, but in reality we live…

The Heart Will Never Love…

what the mind cannot accept. That's a paraphrase of retired Episcopal bishop John Shelby Spong. When I first heard the idea a few decades ago, I wasn't sure that I agreed with it. Now I know that I do agree with it wholeheartedly. Whenever I hear someone offer a nonsensical reason for a well understood…

Breasts

Women have breasts. Bartam Trail High School in Florida apparently is either surprised by that fact or believes that students haven't discovered it yet. They feel compelled to keep breasts under wraps, and so have edited eighty yearbook photos to remove all traces of cleavage. I would hasten that no boy's picture was edited for…

Holding our breath until we turn blue

There are a number of spiritual practices across traditions that are still based in a pre-scientific worldview. Consider fasting. Fasting was thought to clear our minds so we could hear from God. If we fasted long enough we would see things and hear things that we otherwise wouldn't. Fasting is rooted in the Greek belief…

Authority

In a world where institutional religion is mortally wounded, we can feel as if we are in an authority void. This is especially true of people who have belonged to authoritative traditions, wherein people become accustomed to pious proclamations from on high telling them what to believe. In traditions with a stronger emphasis on doctrine,…

Cleaning Negativity

Sometimes I spend quite a bit of time cleaning something only to step back and realize it isn't very clean at all! This has been especially true when polishing altar ware. Brass and silver can be a huge pain to polish, especially if there are nooks and crannies that are hard to access. Wine and…

New Perspectives

Over the years I have noticed that most spiritual teachers who teach on a national level develop what I call, "this year's message." That works because only rarely does anyone see them twice in a year, so most of their audience thinks they are listening to a wonderful message crafted especially for them. I suppose…