Other Practices

In 'The Antidote to Time,' I note that union with the Absolute is a feast of the Spirit!  It is my profound belief that the "table" of the feast of love is open to all.

My own path has not been a straight one.  Along the way, I gleaned from many fertile fields in the development of my spirituality.

Below are compiled some of the sources, texts, and people that have led to my current understandings of a life lived in love, reverence, and service to others.

We are all children of the universe.  The natural world is the bedrock of spirituality.  There is no end to the natural wonders that surround us.  Wendell Berry noted, "The Earth is what we all have in common." The foundation for future human spiritual growth will be intimately linked to a proper understanding of the relationships of humans to Earth.

I have been fascinated with eastern practices for many years, and I am deeply grateful that I have "found" Buddhism.  Until recently, I had never studied with a Buddhist master, so my understanding of Buddhism is limited.  That said, a serious investigation into the texts of Buddhism has provided me with a small glimpse of the fertile common ground with which Buddhism may enrich other spiritual traditions.  The Buddhists have "led the charge" into much of the geography of the spiritual landscape.

Many aspects of Buddhism appeal to me, but none as much as the practice of sending and taking, or tonglen.  Tonglen is a practice that has been passed down within the Dzogchen lineages in Tibet.  One of the foremost educators on tonglen (and Dzogchen Buddhism) is Lama Surya Das.

I am still a beginner in this practice, though it is one of the most powerful meditation practices I have encountered.  In fact, tonglen alone could be contemplated for a lifetime.

Native American Warrior Practices
The warrior traditions of native Americans have been another passion of mine.  In particular, I have found the resurgence in interest in the Toltec tradition to be very interesting and welcome.  Don Miguel Ruiz has led this recent movement, and I find his books to be very inspirational.

I Ching
The I Ching was actually my first meditation book.  I bought it when I was about 13, under the title, "Kung Fu Meditations and Chinese Proverbial Wisdom" (the television series was just becoming a hit).  I was struck by the sense of harmony and balance that this tradition invokes, and I continue to consult this ancient text.

Various Texts
There are many additional resources I could cite that have become essential parts of my spiritual development.

Some of the books that have been important to me are:
"I Am That:  Talks with Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj."
"Awakening the Buddha Within," Lama Surya Das.
"The Four Agreements," don Miguel Ruiz.
"No Death, No Fear," Thich Nhat Hanh.
"The Tibetan Book of Living and Dying," Sogyal Rinpoche.
"An Open Heart," His Holiness the Dalai Lama.
"The Way of the Bodhisattva [Bodhicharyavatara]," Shantideva.
"Up from Eden," Ken Wilber.
"Steps to Christ," Ellen G. White.
"Dzogchen, Heart Essence of the Great Perfection," His Holiness the Dalai Lama.
"Putting on the Mind of Christ, The Inner Work of Christian Spirituality," Jim Marion.
"The Joy of Being Wrong, Original Sin Through Easter Eyes," James Alison.
"The Song of the Bird," Anthony de Mello.