I want you to sit with your deepest pain, your most inescapable suffering. Call it forth even now. Be with it for a few moments if you can. I want you to see it, to see it clearly. I want you to become friends with it. No, I wish for something greater. I want you to see that this one you have called your “enemy” is and has always been your friend and your deepest confidant. And when you meet Pain along life’s path, I want you to call Pain “love waiting to be revealed.” I want you to dance with her, and then tell me of her kiss, which awakened you from the dream you called your life.
I would like to announce my new book project, from which the above quote been taken.
Truth is Dancing: An Invitation from the Other Side of Consciousness
This project has been inspired by my thirty-year spiritual journey, especially the very difficult journey of the past year, which began a year ago today with one of the more traumatic events of my life, perhaps the most traumatic I’ve ever experienced. Very much in the spirit of many of my blogs since last summer, this work will be a poetic and contemplative exploration of love, awakening, and God.
I decided on this project primarily for three reasons.
First, in the course of the past year I’ve received lots of emails from people who have thanked me for my blogs on eastern spirituality and the philosophy of love. It seems that these blogs have really helped people in their own journey, and a number of readers have asked me to write a book along these lines. While there’s much to be said for scholarly writing, my latest project is intended for a general audience, a gift of sorts to all seekers. In this way I wish to acknowledge not only the persons whose lives I’ve touched in some way through my writing but the many people who have touched my life in the past year.
Second, in the past month I’ve been struck with how many friends and acquaintances of mine are, as I did a year ago, undergoing a painful marital divorce, breakups with their partners, or who are otherwise deeply challenged by struggles in their relationships with a significant other. Right here, in this confusion and pain, there is a profound invitation coming to us, and so an opportunity for consciously owning the transformation that is taking place. None of what is happening, however painful, is separate from the path we are walking, nor the spiritual aspirations to which we are committed.
Finally, when my fiancée of three years walked out on me never to be heard from again, I knew that I would eventually write about my experiences. Waiting a year has given me some important clarity but also a deep gratitude for the large residual of mystery that remains. During this past year, I’ve gone through the whole spectrum of emotions, in their various cycles and epicycles, punctuated at various times with a widening of understanding of myself. Most importantly, despite the range of emotion and thoughts, there has been to this hour an undeniable and recurring gratitude for everything I was blessed enough to share with Autumn, which really made it the best relationship I ever had. From where I stand now, I offer this work in the spirit of compassion, not only for my ex fiancée, but for everyone who has been compelled to choose, sometimes the unthinkable, because they had to choose from a place of a deep suffering.
Truth is Dancing will include the poetic, contemplative, and photographic expressions of the invitation I’ve received from what I’m calling the “other side of consciousness,” as well as my response to this invitation. Of course, I can’t say what this other side of consciousness is, for the main objective of the book is to help readers explore their own experience, meet this “other side” for themselves, and discover its invitation to them.
It’s going to be a bit like Rumi meets Gibran meets Jung meets Oriah Mountain Dreamer meets Zen meets bhakti meets Muse meets Black Sabbath.
My projected completion date is fall 2015. While I will continue to write scholarly material related to my forthcoming book on postmortem survival, stay tuned for more on the new writing project.