BOOK: One Garden: realizing your life-secrets

One Garden: realizing your life-secrets

52 pointers, each one a practice for self-transformation on your life-journey


PREFACE: Life like  art is an open secret.  We can see clearly when we let go ‘veils’ that falsify our seeing.


One starting point is to realize more strongly our sameness, and diminish what we see as differences.  There is just one human family - but the 52 spokes to the hub in the structure of this book all point to the same open secret.


We are born out of women’s pain.  We strive and suffer along the way of our life-journey.  Death comes along in the twinkling of an eye.  When we pass from this world some have learned the secret of life, many haven’t.  This book presents the secret of life as taught by some of the wisest of the wise.


This book is written from within an interspiritual view of what it is to be human on our life-journey toward a deeper and more meaning-full spirituality.


The book is in two parts corresponding to the two primary states in which human beings find themselves.  The great Jewish writer Abraham Joshua Heschel referred to the two states of being wwe humans ourselves in being ‘citizens of two realms’


“The Search for reason ends at the known; on the immense expanse beyond it only the sense of the ineffable can glide. It alone knows the route to that which is remote from experience and understanding.


Neither of them is amphibious: reason cannot go beyond the shore, and the sense of the ineffable is out of place where we measure, where we weigh.


We do not leave the shore of the known in search of adventure or suspense or because of the failure of reason to answer our questions. We sail because our mind is like a fantastic seashell, and when applying our ear to its lips we hear a perpetual murmur from the waves beyond the shore.


Citizens of two realms, we all must sustain a dual allegiance: we sense the ineffable in one realm, we name and exploit reality in another.


Between the two we set up a system of references, but we can never fill the gap. They are as far and as close to each other as time and calendar, as violin and melody, as life and what lies beyond the last breath.”

Abraham Joshua Heschel, Man Is Not Alone: A Philosophy of Religion


PART 1: Citizens of Two realms - The realm of reason and the realm of Mystery


We are all Citizens of Two realms - The realm of reason and the realm of Mystery





PART TWO: 52 Topics as pointers to interspiritual living


Interspirituality means you can see beyond the perverted and corrupted religions, and are starting to realize that the true core of the great spiritual traditions is One.  This might include such ideas as .......


Texts and the ultimate context - the Mystery of the Whole.  I am using ‘text’ in a very broad way - far beyond but

including the written word.  By text I mean to anything that engages our dual self.


READING THE WORLD VIA AN INTERSPIRITUAL WORLDVIEW:  

The term interspirituality was coined by Wayne Teasdale and his book is the definitive source to understand interspirituality.  His definition which underlies this book is;


THE RECOVERY OF THE SHARED MYSTIC HEART BEATING IN THE CENTRE OF

THE WORLD’S DEEPEST SPIRITUAL TRADITIONS

“Humanity stands at a crossroads between horror and hope. In choosing hope, we must seed a new consciousness, a radically fresh approach to life drawing its inspiration from perennial spiritual and moral insights, intuition and experience. We call this new awareness Interspiritual, implying not the homogenization of religion, but the recovering of the shared mystic heart beating in the center of the world’s deepest spiritual traditions.”

Wayne Teasdale, in his book The Mystic Heart


Practice Matters:  It is a challenge to us to use each one as some form of practice - for a week?


1 Mindfulness  - Smiling, Breathing, Going slowly (and/or consciously) enables insight .


2 Justice as a conditioner of our inner life.


3 Bringing ourselves back to the now - breath returns us to the now and helps re-integrate body, mind & spirit


4 Gratitude also returns us to the now - as well as the traditional benefits of ‘count our blessings’


5 It’s never too late to have a happy childhood.


6 Mythos must balance logos - literal/scientific truth - metaphorical truth, head heart, male - female etc


7 De-sensitizing those buttons - Healing parental hurt stuff


8 Forgiveness is grease for the slide home


9 “God is a circle whose centre is everywhere, whose circumference is nowhere.” - immanent and transcendent


10 Getting insight


11 Love as the universe’s glue


12 The breath of God is breathing you


13 Geddit - is there a geddit factor? - Cultural reference is to Glenda Slagg in Private Eye


14 Exp of oneness


15 Circles of silence


16 Metaphor as the language of the spirit


17 The Human spirit - the 3 Cs


18 The most imp of all questions


19 Happiness


20 At-one-ment & flow


21 You aren't your thoughts


22 Good stories and bad stories


23 Mantras


24 Meditation v Contemplation


25 Which teachers can we trust?


26 What is (ultimate) reality?


27 The restoration of the feminine principle


28 Fundamentalism


29 Salvation


30 Virtues (& names and attributes of God)


31 En-courage-ment


32 The key virtue in relationships


33 Wisdom


34 Religions - all different or the same inside - mystical core


35 Great Teachers


36 Spiritual Federalism


37 Social control


38 Teaching children democracy, conflict-resolution and peace-building - for parents & teachers


39 The diseases of today - cynicism, celebrity etc


40 What does it mean to grow up?


41 Socrates - world citizen


42 Plato's Allegory of the Cave


43 Re-enchantment


44 Pre-modernism, modernism & post-modernism


45 The 3 voices of the human spirit


46 What might God mean if it wasn't what most people mean by Him/Her/It??


47 Literalism and metaphor, metaphor as the language of the spirit.


48 Mystery & the Whole - the inevitable encounter.


49 Einstein - atheist or mystic or both?


50 Whole, hale, heal and personal integration


51 Art as healing                                                                             


52 Light is light in whatever lamp it shines from


SPARES  - Check out other books - especially those on our core reading list

1 The paradox of ‘and’ instead of ‘or’

2 Panentheism

3 The middle way - avoiding  excess


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