Clarity and Brilliance

The “clarity” of a diamond refers to the absence of defects, of imperfections that would otherwise obscure its transparency to light. At higher degrees of clarity a diamond will take on a “brilliance” where the magnification of light through its various facets has the effect of shining or generating a radiance from its own interiorContinue reading “Clarity and Brilliance”

American Spirit

If you believe, as I do, that the world around us is a construction of meaning for which we are at least partially responsible, then when the world appears to be reeling out of control, one place we should check for the cause is our own mental state. As both product and symptom of ourContinue reading “American Spirit”

Hero’s Journey

Let’s get “mythological” for a few minutes. You are the hero on a journey to find your true self. (Why you would have to go anywhere to find your true self is not something you pause to really think about.) On the way, you enter a bazaar where all kinds of costumes are available forContinue reading “Hero’s Journey”

Meditation on a Tree

Sometimes it’s easier to understand ourselves by using something else as our lens. Let’s take that tree outside your window. As an analogy, this particular example is especially helpful given that a tree is rooted in the ground, growing up and out to participate in its local and regional ecosystem. Lots of fascinating connotations attachContinue reading “Meditation on a Tree”

Keeping It Real

What is it for something to be real? Let’s go even bigger and ask, What is reality? Presumably something is real when it has reality, but what does that even mean? Are we just tripping over terms but getting no closer to genuine insight and understanding? Not surprisingly, we’re not the first to ask theseContinue reading “Keeping It Real”

Waiting in Line

The human journey through life has only recently been a topic of psychological study. For thousands of years before that, its exploration was mythological, carried out not by objective research but subjective experience. Our modern tools of psychology have made possible a rational precision that was not available all those centuries and millenniums, but evenContinue reading “Waiting in Line”

Living By What We Know

I’m going to make an argument that will likely seem strange to you, at least at first. It applies to our current situation as a species on this planet, specifically to our apparent disorientation and confusion when it comes to knowing how to live and get along. Add to this a chronic frustration over soContinue reading “Living By What We Know”

Make Your Home a COVID Monastery

Amidst the chaotic disruption of daily life, an increasing number of us are feeling the strain on our mental health. The economic shakeup has altered the way we work, how we shop, where we go, and what company we keep. Spending more time at home, whether in quarantine or out of caution over catching andContinue reading “Make Your Home a COVID Monastery”

Full-Circle Spirituality

The ultimate aim of human evolution is the formation of spiritual community, by which is meant nothing supernatural or esoteric, but rather a kind of “breathing” (spiritus) “together as one” (communitas). In this higher state of consciousness, individual egos act as creative agents of communal wellbeing, serving not an impersonal system or their own selfishContinue reading “Full-Circle Spirituality”

Letting Go, Coming Together

In Spiritual Direction I offered a way of understanding human development following the evolutionary map of consciousness across its generative, individuative, and unitive principles. I suggested that these three principles are what inform the narrative structure of Joseph Campbell’s “monomyth” throughout the world’s mythologies, using the New Testament Hero Myth of Jesus in Luke-Acts asContinue reading “Letting Go, Coming Together”