A brief point on the literal vs. the symbolic

“Cosmic Christ” by Brian Phillips

“Do not suppose that I have come to bring peace to the earth.

I did not come to bring peace, but a sword.”

— Jesus, Gospel of Matthew 10:34

My thought process was probably familiar to you:

“Wait I was really liking this guy, the ‘love your enemies’ teaching is right on—but now he’s talking about bringing swords?

He’s either terribly inconsistent or they got some translations wrong.”

I was completely unaware of…


Grappling with Nonduality and “the Illusion”

This place is a dream. Only a sleeper considers it real. Then death comes like dawn, and you wake up laughing at what you thought was your grief.

— Jalaluddin Rumi


America is Laughably, Infuriatingly Behind

Watching The Crown this past week, specifically Margaret Thatcher’s inauguration as prime minister of Britain, and becoming increasingly disillusioned at how backwards, how Neanderthal we are in America (still) when it comes to female leadership.

At least 79 countries have had a female leader and Jake Tapper had the audacity to joke about Kamala Harris’ husband, Doug Emhoff, becoming the first ever “Second Dude?” He apologized. But it stayed with me. A senior American journalist acted like a nine-year-old because we associate female leadership with their husbands’ emasculation.

I’m here to tell you friends, women can lead and should lead…


Part of the NEC SPIRITUAL EXPLAINER Series

An Intro to the Non-Institutional Internal Path

Flammarion engraving, by anonymous (1888)

If you realize that all things change,

there is nothing you will try to hold on to.

— Lao Tzu

React to this!

Judge that!

Enjoy this!

Hate that!

And as soon as you finish engaging with one phenomena, a new one comes into view.

It’s exhausting, isn’t it?

All of the manifestations of mysticism that I’ve come across are based on the idea that the external world does not bring lasting peace. We may find it for a day, or a month or even a…


Part of the NEC SPIRITUAL EXPLAINER Series

God comes to a New Age with a global perspective.

All things are but masks at God’s beck and call,
They are symbols that instruct us that God is all.
— Farid ud-Din Attar

One of the extremes is an old bearded white man on a cloud passing judgments. …


Listening to and amplifying the unheard

DISCLAIMER:

Before I go in, this is for other uncertain white folks. I’m not about to tell black people and other communities of color what they should be doing, or how they should be protesting, or how MLK III should be interpreting MLK Jr.’s words—those are their decisions to make. Safe to say the III knows Jr. better than literally any other person on this planet. But for the uncertain whites, we’re getting a lot of info right now and this piece is written purely to offer a few suggestions on how to become a more integrated, conscious member of a…


Our house came with this unremovable neon message. Despite emphasizing impermanence, it’s becoming more of a permanent fixture, seemingly resistant to its own teaching.

I love Emily’s work on this place, our home’s previous owner is an interior designer who transformed this mediocre old house from the 60s into a stylish, updated remodel, with mid-century modern aesthetics (I think) and art pieces — worthy of multiple publications praising her work on this thing. …


A few ways to help yourself and others during the pandemic

Art by the brilliant Ramin Nazer

If you’re feeling spiritual: try a Buddhist lovingkindness meditation. This one is a real heart-charger. Or listen to my favorite Ram Dass lectures.

If you’re more of an activist/helper: contribute your skills to this new open-source app project enabling home deliveries to people most affected by quarantine. Their team could use the help, it’s called StayNeighbor. Email me if you want to join us.

If you can’t do either right now: remember that focusing on yourself isn’t wrong. Your own well-being is incredibly important. Don’t feel guilty.


The Prince of King God was born on top of where animals eat

“The Nativity” by Sandro Botticelli (1473–1475)

As so many of us are familiar, Jesus was born in a manger. Around barn animals. Trying to picture it, it had to be pretty dirty in there. Mary and Joseph rush in and find a comfortable spot on what was essentially the equivalent of a cow’s feeding trough.

You know… the Lord?

The person who Christians don’t even like referring to as a man — to most of the Western world he is the literal Son of God.

The Prince of King God was born on top of where animals eat.

As I understand it, everything on the level…


In the larger oneness of humanity, there is no isolation

Palestinian women sit next to the ruins of their dwellings, which were demolished by Israeli bulldozers in Umm al-Hiran, a Palestinian village in Israel’s southern Negev Desert, January 18, 2017. (Reuters / Ammar Awad)

When I’m not writing about mystic philosophy and esoteric topics like chakric metaphysics (and consequently feeling the climbing eyebrows of scientific materialists), my other primary creative outlet is making advocacy films.

The mystic’s worldview lines right up with advocating for universal human rights. If we truly believe from our innermost depths that we are all one big global family, or (playing at the edge of mysticism) even Oneness Itself, we start to act accordingly.

We try to reduce their suffering.

This global family concept seems to be more and more crucial entering the 2020s. In the larger oneness of humanity…

Bob Peck

Film & religion degrees, festival docs, and now Facebook. Trying to be present in every moment — not looking good so far. [bewherehow.com]

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