What is the most difficult step on the spiritual path? It would be easy to assume that the first step, the decision to know the Divine, would cause the most difficulty. After all, it is like getting in a boat that you’re not sure of on a sea you’ve never sailed to reach an unknown destination! The most you may have to go on is the knowledge that others have set sail, reached the destination and…Continue
When the words mystic and love show up in the same sentence, Rumi usually comes to mind. But let’s travel back 500 years before Rumi’s birth to meet Rabia Basri (Rabia al-Adawiyya al-Qaysiyya 717-801 CE) a Sufi mystic poet who inspired his writing. We can’t presume to know exactly what it was about Rabia’s writing that caught Rumi’s eye. It could have been the fact that Rabia was female, courageous and quite eccentric, but it’s far more likely it was her radical view of love.
Added by Lee and Steven Hager on April 5, 2013 at 8:32pm — No Comments
Court jesters were highly valued by kings and emperors, trickster gods were an important part of many religions and cultures, and the Bible tells us that, “God chose the foolish things of the world.” (1 Corinthians 1:27) Even in our society, which has enthroned the logical brain, the fool is still held in high esteem by many. We may call them comedians, satirists, wits or artists, but they serve the same important function as the jesters and tricksters of the past: exposing absurdity that…Continue
Added by Lee and Steven Hager on March 7, 2013 at 2:36pm — No Comments
Long before the venerable text Tao Te Ching was penned, the philosophy we think of as the Tao or Dao, meaning ‘way,’ ‘path’ or ‘route’ was forming. The Tao is not a name for a human-like god, a thing or a power. It’s more accurately translated as the matrix of the universe, its ultimate life essence. In light of quantum discoveries, we could think of the Tao as the consciousness, energy and potential that is the foundation of All That Is. Penned in China around 500-300 BCE, the…Continue
Who of us can resist a book or movie that features a heroic quest, especially one that features the enigmatic Holy Grail? To discover whether the grail is myth or reality, let’s take a look at the history of objects believed to have special powers. Celtic legends of magic cauldrons and ‘horns of plenty’ fueled human imagination long before the 12th century writer Chrétien de Troyes first penned the original grail story, Perceval le Gallois (known later as The Count of…Continue
In our world, nothing stays the same for long. We’re taught to rely on the advice of experts, but even their learned opinions appear to change with the breeze. And when we examine the history of religion and spiritual philosophy, we can identify the shifts and changes there as well. If we want to experience lasting peace and joy, what can we rely on? There is something that has remained unchanged for the last twenty-five centuries, and during that time has helped innumerable seekers connect…Continue
Added by Lee and Steven Hager on December 2, 2012 at 7:04pm — No Comments
Where would Buddha keep his boat? The brain wants to come up with a clever answer to what sounds like a tricky riddle. Did Buddha have a boat, or does the boat stand for something else? The 19th century mystic Sri Ramakrishna likened spiritual masters to “big steamships which not only cross the ocean themselves but carry many passengers to the other shore.” Using that symbolism, we might say that Buddha was the boat that carries others to awareness. But the Dhammapada, a collection of the…Continue
Added by Lee and Steven Hager on November 2, 2012 at 7:12pm — No Comments
Few things are mentioned in connection with the Divine as often as love and light. Since we can express love ourselves, we understand and appreciate it more readily. But like love, the deeper meaning of light can also expand our understanding of the Divine, the universe and our own true nature. Light has been given many meanings in spiritual teachings, but recent scientific research has added a richer perspective to ancient wisdom.
Religions and cultures through the ages have used…Continue
Gnosis has played an integral role in spirituality for thousands of years, but the 1945 Nag Hammadi discovery of a group of texts labeled the Gnostic Gospels, has made gnosis a popular subject. And like most popular subjects, conflicting information quickly accumulates that can become confusing. Let’s sift through some of the popular misconceptions as we define gnosis, gnostic and Gnosticism.
Recently, the word gnosis has been associated with ‘awakened’…Continue