John's blog

It's a Beautiful, Beautiful World

Yesterday I was driving through the mountains of Central Oregon—with a sick wife and incessantly trilling dog. My dog doesn’t whine, she trills. Finally, exasperatedly, I turned off the highway where there was a bridge crossing a creek, drove up an old, deserted road, pulled up, and found a trail leading into the woods. I let Lucy (the triller) out of the car, and she ran down the trail with me in hot pursuit.

Lucy and I entered into a very magical and lovely deeply wooded area and found a beautiful river in which Lucy swam. The feeling at this place was amazing; there was a profound, seemingly holy presence in these woods. After some time of ecstasy and communion, we returned to the car, where Pam was fast asleep. Lucy and I were glowing.  Read more »

Integral Recovery Survival Tips for the Holidays

  • Put your practice first and your sobriety first. 

  • Hanging out with family can often be very challenging, so make sure you have a plan of how you’re going to take care of yourself.

  • I have found that if I ratchet up my meditation practice from 1 hour to 1.5 hours a day while visiting family, this really helped.

  • Have a getaway plan — bring your own car (or rent one). There’s nothing worse than getting stuck in a dysfunctional situation with no place to go and no way to get there.

  • Consider getting your own motel room, rather than staying with your family. This gives you a place of refuge, where you can go when you’ve had enough.

Hope at the End of the Tunnel

Profound Meditation Practice

Transcribed from iAwake's weekly, free teleconference call on July 25, 2012.

I was recently in the Bay Area to teach a class on Addiction Studies. When my class and I did our first meditation together, we sank into a very deep meditative state, one which we could all really feel. When you meditate in a group, there is a definite field of energy, a palpable coming together, especially when you have been doing the Profound Meditation Program for a number of years. It is a very interesting and very powerful experience.  Read more »

An Answer and a Gift

I wanted to share a powerful experience that I had in meditation the other day. I was using the iAwake Special Edition Digital Euphoria track and I was in a profound state of contemplative prayer, or resting in the presence, as I have begun to call it. Paul Smith, author of Integral Christianity, calls it the Zone, which is also very useful.  Read more »

Gospel of Thomas: The Invitation and the Obligation

For the last few months, our meditation group, which has been meeting together on Sundays for the last 13 years, has been reading through the Gospel of Thomas, following our 40-minute meditation. Initially, we were reading five verses at a time, but we found that the verses were so deep, and often challenging, that now we simply reread last week’s verse and read one new one each week. As many of you probably know, the Gospel of Thomas was rediscovered buried in the Egyptian desert near the village of Nag Hammadi in 1945, along with a number of other ancient Christian texts. Initially, the Gospel of Thomas was dismissed by many scholars as being too “gnostic.” But over the years since its discovery, more and more biblical scholars have begun to realize the importance and legitimacy of Thomas. Many scholars believe that it comes from an earlier time than the Canonical Gospels in the New Testament that most of us are familiar with, namely Mathew, Mark, Luke, and John.  Read more »

Integral Sainthood

Recently, I have been experiencing a period of deep sadness. It is different from the crippling depressions I have experienced in the past, when it felt like I was trying to walk and think surrounded by mud; my body, mind, and emotions so weighted down that I could hardly move, think, or feel. What I am experiencing now, however, is just sadness. I can still move, think, and feel. So, bear with me as I attempt to clarify what is going on for me. And, perhaps find the gift or the light in this dark experience.  Read more »

Another One Bites the Dust

Dear Integral Friends and Family,

I hesitated a few days before posting this. I felt that the tone was too preachy and righteous and didn't take into account Genpo's suffering and the responsibility of the other adults involved. And, when I chuck rocks, I am well aware of Jesus' injunction, "He that is without sin..." Nevertheless, I feel there is enough in the article below that merits reading and deserves to be a part of this ongoing conversation. We are all One, your sin is mine, and mine is yours, as well as your glory and beauty. My request is that we hold this deep knowledge and compassion as we skillfully and courageously sort out this relative fur ball. I feel there is a great gift through and beyond all this hurt, anger, and pain. God bless us, One and All.

Love,
John  Read more »

That which is not Lived is not Redeemed

I was recently reading Cynthia Borgeault’s remarkable book The Meaning of Mary Magdalene. In this book, on page 142 to be exact, Cynthia quotes an adage from the early Church fathers: “That which is not lived is not redeemed.” Cynthia paraphrases this  as "That which is not accepted is not transformed.” These sayings hit me hard and I jotted them down on my legal pad and sat with them for a few days.

As the readers of this may or may not know, I have been engaged in transformative inner practice for going on six years now and have been working with others to develop the same practice in their lives. I’ve also recently helped to bring a new, very powerful transformative tool, the Profound Meditation Program, into the world. Many of us who are using this product's technology are getting our worlds rocked.  Read more »

Deep Practice and Playing the Blues

About five months ago, I was at a friend’s house in Salt Lake City, who had started a business buying and selling vintage guitars. I started playing guitar when I was thirteen years old, so I have had a 40-year relationship with the instrument. Somewhere early on, for various reasons that I won’t get into, I became a rhythm acoustic guitar player, singer, and eventually songwriter. So, there I was, in a room full of old guitars, and I picked up a Fender Telecaster and began to play it. It was love at first touch. The action on the neck felt as if it had been brushed by the wings of angels and I remembered my first love and my first guitar—a Gibson SG Standard, which I bought when I was thirteen with money I made painting a house during the summer. All those feelings of wonder with an electric guitar came flooding back and somehow I knew that this guitar was meant for me. The guitar was a ’72 Fender Telecaster custom. I told my friend, “I gotta have it.” And bought the guitar.  Read more »

Deep Ethics and the Gettysburg Address

For some time now, I’ve been feeling that I should throw my hat in the ring on the subject of ethics. A lot of my ideas and intuitions crystallized around a talk I attended, given by Roger Walsh at the Conference for Integral Theory at JFK University. In my soon-to-be-published book (SUNY Press), I even have a short chapter entitled “Ethics, the Fifth Line.” In other words, in addition to our body, mind, emotional, and spiritual practices, that are necessary for a truly transformative integral practice, we must include ethics as a discreet line and ongoing practice.  Read more »

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