//Spirituality 3
Spirituality 3 2017-05-18T20:34:35+00:00

Welcome to Tier 3 of Spirituality & Personal Growth recommendations! In reality the list here is more like my usual Tier 2, but I didn't want to overwhelm that list. There are just so many truly transformational materials and teachings that they require two lists.


The Way of Transition
William Bridges

The books of William Bridges are built on observations made by anthropologists about tribal rights of passage. Thus, while Bridges’ books have been primarily used in organizational development settings, they are equally useful to, and meant for, individuals who are facing change in their individual lives. His insights and helpful suggestions for navigating the choppy and challenging waters of transition are, in a word, powerful.

“In other words, change is situational. Transition, on the other hand, is psychological…Whatever word we use, our society talks a lot about change; but it seldom deals with transition. Unfortunately for us, it is the transition that blind-sides us and is often the source of our troubles.” Pg xii, Transitions


Siddha Yoga

Siddha Yoga was my first immersion into a sacred environment. I had my first experiences of meditation–and extended chanting–at the Oakland Siddha Yoga ashram. Sometimes I wonder if it was by the grace of the Guru, Gurumayi Chidvilasananda, that my spiritual path really took off (after a few years of occasional attendance at the Oakland ashram).

Check out Siddha Yoga’s home study offerings, or in-person courses, and find a Siddha Yoga center in your part of the world. There are also lots of opportunities to offer service to those in need, such as the Siddha Yoga Prison Project.

Finally, if you’re in Oakland, I recommend stopping by the Amrit Cafe. It’s a beautiful way to spend a meal, and your financial contribution helps to support this devotional community.


Interpreting the Sacred
William E. Paden

This is an amazing book. It’s gently academic, and beautifully thought out. If perchance you have “issues” around religion, it’s medicine for taking the charge off of reactionary attitudes. If you are a member of a religion and know you have work to do in deescalating a holier-than-thou complex, this book provides a sober look at a diversity of religious practices and ways of viewing religion, all on equally profound footing. It’s a much needed example of beautifully clear thinking on a vast, potentially very complicated topic.


The Spell of the Sensuous
David Abram

This popular text will effectively turn your world upside-down. We take words for granted, but Abram does not. He traces the evolution of language back, back, back… And then forward, to suggest how language itself has molded our very perception, and has deep ramifications for how we treat the Earth.

And indeed, it is only when a culture shifts its participation to these printed letters that the stones fall silent. Only as our senses transfer their animating magic to the written word do the trees become mute, the other animals dumb. pg 131, The Spell of the Sensuous: Perception and Language in a More-Than-Human World


Institute of Noetic Sciences (IONS)

This organization provides a unique public service through providing “individual and collective transformation through consciousness research, educational outreach, and engaging a global learning community in the realization of our human potential” (Mission). I’ve had the privileged to volunteer for the organization in the past, including as a research participant! Engaging with their work (through books, retreats, webinars, blogs, etc.) is very much a worldview changing experience. IONS website.


Inner Work: Using Dreams and Active Imagination for Personal Growth

Dreams were (and at time continue to be) absolutely key in unlocking my potential. This is one of many great books that give the reader a solid toe-hold into dream work. It has the added bonus of offering an introduction to active imagination, a technique developed by C. G. Jung. Johnson has many popular, yet really solid books on the subjects of dreams and personal growth. Inner Work

I also highly recommend the work of Jeremy Taylor. His book Where People Fly and Water Runs Up Hill (or the recent edition, The Wisdom of Your Dreams), is equally profound and potentially life-changing. Taylor also has a great “Common Dream Themes” list on his website, and offers talks, courses, and live or virtual personal sessions. Finally, for those interested in a deeper delve into dream work, Taylor’s book The Living Labyrinth is phenomenal.

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