Poets, Christians, and Not Wanting to Be a Poser

OSH Statue

Lately, I’ve been pretty deep into words. Having been writing for years – essays, academic writing, and technical writing – I’ve always longed to write words of beauty and powerful metaphor, rather than direct explanations and carefully constructed arguments. In high school, some of the more brilliant kids I hung out with wrote poetry, and … [Read more…]

I See You: Can You Feel how Loved You Are?

Source

(Published at Rebelle Society) I see you. You may not realize it, but I do. I see you with eyes shaped by tides and waves, hills and trenches. When your joy explodes into the ether, and when the implosion of sorrow damn near pulls my heart out of my chest and straight into yours, I … [Read more…]

The Tension of Opposites: Love, Chaos, & the Wild Vortex

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“Perhaps it shouldn’t be surprising that a high tolerance for ambiguity, ambivalence, and a tendency to think in opposites are characteristics researchers have found common among creative people in many different fields. But professional creators… come to understand that in order to be creative, they need to give themselves to sensations of ‘knowing but not … [Read more…]

First View

mountains

She lounges back on the horizon arched curves pushing up from the heart and invites me, lures and calls me, closer into the mystery. Like magic I feel my body surge spirit hurling headfirst over the highways, past time, and into the crease where one rise meets the other. There, a river slinks through lushness, … [Read more…]

A Personal Face to the Refugee Crisis

I can’t help but notice how hard it is for us to connect with news stories when we don’t have a personal face — someone we know, or a memory, or some simple way of helping us feel personally impacted by stories we read about. My closest friend from college, about whom I care more … [Read more…]

“Grounding” without “grounding”

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My mind is full of ideas. At its best it swims with the flow of information, insight, and creativity, deftly navigating challenges and the unexpected at top speeds. At its worst, the torrent is overwhelming, filling my mind with anxieties or offering more data than I can process. Typically, I’m somewhere in the middle – … [Read more…]

On the need for interfaith worship

dukebelltower

Recently, I was catching up on past episodes of Interfaith Voices and heard their discussion about the Muslim call to prayer that was planned, and then canceled, by Duke University. Many of the speakers shared thoughtful dialogue about the value of interfaith acceptance, ways in which we interpret calls to prayer from various faith traditions, … [Read more…]

Five benefits to working with established forms

Early in 1999, I was arguably at the peak of my conversion energy, a few months into my formal involvement in New Thought churches. I was so enamored of the mind-power philosophies — all I had to do is focus my mind, and I could manifest changes to improve my life. Medicine, ritual, prayer, and such … [Read more…]

Activism, compassion, and healing — finding balance

Hands holding sapling in soil

“Activism is the rent I pay for living on the planet.” -Alice Walker This is a concept that has guided my life for many years now. I’ve volunteered with church groups, youth initiatives, hurricane relief efforts, LGBTQ advocacy groups, and programs for children and adults with developmental disabilities. I’ve also answered suicide hotlines, rape crisis hotlines, … [Read more…]

The blessings of cycle — managing the depths

"Scuba diver" by Flickr user @mysticgringo

Early in 2012, I had the good fortune to go to a weekend workshop led by Matthew Fox, focusing on ecospirituality, social justice, and environmental awareness as a catalyst for spiritual growth. It was an amazing weekend, and I was impressed not only by Matthew’s vibrance, sense of humor, and energy, but also by the depth … [Read more…]

Conversion experiences, long-term love, and spiritual community

girlatsunset

Although I’d been a student of metaphysics and the mind-body connection off and on since the early nineties, I didn’t discover New Thought as an organizational or historical movement until 1998. In that year, I returned to university studies two and a half years after my first attempt at college found me booted from the … [Read more…]

Past, present, future

distantphone

Much of the advice I’ve found in my 20 years exploring the metaphysical movement and its positive thinking branches has been focused on the future. After all, a movement that claims to offer a practical method for improving one’s circumstances will naturally attract people who want their circumstances to improve, and teachers are responding to … [Read more…]

Welcoming the new year — an intention tradition!

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It’s a new year, and while I don’t tend to get swept up in the cultural to-do list that often surrounds a new year (resolutions, anyone?), I do like to mark the passing of one year into another.It started in 2009. We had just moved to a new town with a much more spiritually open-minded … [Read more…]

My intention matters, but it isn’t everything

Interior detail in japanese inspired home

Last year, I had the pleasure of meeting Mitch Horowitz while he was researching and writing his book, One Simple Idea: How Positive Thinking Reshaped Modern Life when he contacted me about a paper from which I’d had an excerpt published over a decade ago. I was able to get him a full copy of my paper (although I’m … [Read more…]

Complex ideas, catchphrases, and simplicity

trustbirth

  If you’ve spent any time reading up on natural childbirth, you have probably encountered the phrase, “Trust Birth.” It’s a catchphrase that encompasses the idea that birth is safe, natural, and healthy — a natural process of a woman’s body, rather than a medical emergency that requires intervention. We live in a culture of … [Read more…]