Spirit

Teachings and practices from the world's great faith traditions and humanistic philosophy to help us stay sane and remain courageous during the Transition time.

Month of heartbreak

Graffiti of pierced bleeding heart with dark spot

I saw grief drinking a cup of sorrow and called out, “It tastes sweet, does it not?” “You’ve caught me,” grief answered, “and you’ve ruined my business, how can I sell sorrow when you know it’s a blessing?” -- Rumi Valentines Day will may be a distant memory but the entire month of February has been designated American Heart Month. This means that for twenty-eight days we have permission … [Read more...]

Staying on the train

time flies sign

The traveler has to knock at every alien door to come to his own, and one has to wander through all the outer worlds to reach the innermost shrine at the end. -- Rabindranath Tagore Nearly every day I speak with people who are confused, bewildered, disoriented, or conversely, extraordinarily clear about what is happening to them. A few years, months, or weeks earlier, they began waking up to the … [Read more...]

A walk in January

walking in snow

The only sounds are crows and wind. The winds resemble distant trains without the reassuring rhythm. They persist too strongly, and while I can't say that the trees object and are complaining, many have retreated to their shelters for the winter. No, this is not a pulse of power; it seems a determined, endless current, though it really is only a wave, the rhythm of which is not obvious yet. … [Read more...]

Not enough time to hurry

hurry or take your time

In his classic existentialist novel, The Stranger, Camus wrote, “I’d read, of course, that in jail one ends up losing track of time.” He then has his protagonist reflect upon how worrying about time had governed his life before he had become incarcerated. This is interesting — and relatively recent as the whole concept of linear time is a construct of modernity. Before the 1870’s the … [Read more...]

Without a spiritual dimension, activism will fail

Sister Helen Prejean

I realize that I cannot stand by silently as my government executes its citizens. If I do not speak out and resist, I am an accomplice. -- Helen Prejean, Activist Nun and author of Dead Man Walking For decades Sister Helen Prejean has resisted the death penalty and devoted her life to educating citizens regarding its economic, social, and spiritual costs to a society. She is one of myriad … [Read more...]

‘Tis a gift to be cold

Photo: nosha

The beauty of the universe expresses itself in simplicity. --Margaret J. Wheatley Winter is the time of year when we are confronted head-on with simplicity. In the latitude where I live, as the earth turns away from the sun, temperatures drop. Water molecules slow down to the point where water freezes as cold envelops the landscape. Most plants go into a state of rest - they shed their … [Read more...]

Breathing life back into the Christmas story

Nativity Scene

We've all heard the story of the birth of Jesus so many times by now that it's hard for anyone but a Sunday school teacher to pay attention to the details. The baby Jesus. Asleep in a manger in Bethlehem. Sought out by Wise Men following a star and of course, by certain poor shepherds in fields where they lay. Born of Virgin Mary who had to flee in the night with Joseph from King Herod's … [Read more...]

Light in darkest winter

light in a subway tunnel

As far as we can discern, the sole purpose of human existence is to kindle a light in the darkness of mere being. -- Carl Jung It is not uncommon to find ancient indigenous sites that were constructed in exact alignment with the sun’s rays at significant times of the solar calendar. Egyptian pyramids, Stonehenge, and ruins at Chaco Canyon in the United States are a few examples. With regard … [Read more...]

6 ways to become more miserable about climate change and peak oil

man in bathtub

It's bad enough that most middle-class people still have to struggle to keep their jobs and homes in today's Second Great Depression. But if you're even a little bit awake, then you also have to worry about longer-term threats: climate change, Fukushima, peak oil and the impending collapse of industrial civilization. There's plenty of reason for anyone to be depressed these days. Yet, … [Read more...]

The real torture is not knowing

roller coaster

In the age of catastrophic climate change, and two years following the horrifying meltdown of reactors at Fukushima’s nuclear power plant, we realize that both phenomena are profoundly impacting our species and the earth community. What we don’t know with certainty is the exact extent of the damage being done. In Alex Smith’s recent Radio Ecoshock interview with Robert Way of the University … [Read more...]