You are here

Our New Reviews

Viewing 1 - 10 of 13
holy rascals

Holy Rascals

Advice for Spiritual Revolutionaries
$19.50 CAD
Paperback Book
Publisher: Sounds True
Publication Date: December, 2017
ISBN: 9781622037469
In stock now: 4

God is real. Everything we say about God is made up. Holy Rascals is a rousing call to anyone ready to go beyond isms and ideologies, and live in the world as a liberating force of justice, compassion, and joy. It’s also a brilliant, blunt tuning of your funny bone for the greater good.

“Holy rascals are spiritual culture jammers who use humor, play, creativity, and critical thinking to reveal the human origins of religions and how religions mask their true origins behind the conceit of divine origins,” writes Rabbi Rami.

Humor is the one thing Gods and clergy cannot fight. It is the one thing they fear the most. The surest way to slay a God is to laugh at the madness the God promotes. This is what holy rascals are called to do, and this book is a manifesto and guide to doing it.

In part one, he describes the making of a holy rascal and the great task of “freeing religion from the parochial and for the perennial.” Part two explores the art of hacking the holy, or pulling back the curtain on religion’s fear-based mechanisms of control.

 Substitute “religion” for “language” and you have the basic holy rascal understanding of religion.

We turn sounds into letters, letters into words, words into sentences, sentences into paragraphs, paragraphs into books, books into excuses for bashing each other’s heads in. No wonder silence is golden.

Part three presents some of the provocative tools and one-of-a-kind practices of the holy rascal, with guidance for creating your very own “rascally” ways.

We are religious anarchists and spiritual subversives whose goal is to free religion from branding all together, and in this way set human meaning making free to imagine new ways of being holy that do not fall into the clutches of tribalism and its passion for demonizing the other.

Rabbi Rami’s wit and aphorisms offer astonishing, freeing perspective for today’s spiritual seeker. “What makes enlightened people seem special is that they are so very ordinary, while all the rest of us are desperately trying to be anything but…

“At once side-splittingly hilarious and heartbreakingly on target, this outrageous tour de force of a spiritual manifesto reminds us once again that great irony wielded with great compassion can be a powerful vehicle of truth.” —Cynthia Bourgeault, author of The Wisdom Way of Knowing

new testament

New Testament

A Translation
$46.95 CAD
Hardcover Book
Publisher: Yale University Press
Publication Date: October, 2017
ISBN: 9780300186093
In stock now: 0

 David Bentley Hart undertook this new translation of the New Testament in the spirit of “etsi doctrina non daretur,” “as if doctrine is not given.” Reproducing the texts’ often fragmentary formulations without augmentation or correction, he has produced a pitilessly literal translation, one that captures the texts’ impenetrability and unfinished quality while awakening readers to an uncanniness that often lies hidden beneath doctrinal layers.

The early Christians’ sometimes raw, astonished, and halting prose challenges the idea that the New Testament affirms the kind of people we are. Hart reminds us that they were a company of extremists, radical in their rejection of the values and priorities of society not only at its most degenerate, but often at its most reasonable and decent. 

To live as the New Testament language requires, Christians would have to become strangers and sojourners on the earth, to have here no enduring city, to belong to a Kingdom truly not of this world. And we surely cannot do that, can we? —from the introduction

Also by David Bentley Hart is The Experience of God.

meister eckhart's book of the heart

Meister Eckhart's Book of the Heart

Meditations for the Restless Souls
$24.95 CAD
Paperback Book
Publisher: Hampton Roads Publishing
Publication Date: October, 2017
ISBN: 9781571747648
In stock now: 4

Meister Eckhart (1260 -1328) was a priest, a mystic, and nearly a heretic (he died before the Church court’s verdict). In the 20th century, the Roman Catholic Church rehabilitated him and the late Pope John Paul II spoke of his work with fondness. However, what makes him of particular interest is the fact that he has influenced a wide range of spiritual teachers and mystics both inside and outside the Christian tradition. Erich Fromm, Eckhart Tolle, Richard Rohr, D. T. Suzuki, and Rudolf Steiner have all credited Eckhart as being an important influence on their thought. In addition, his work has influenced the development of 20th century American Buddhism and the Theosophical tradition.

Eckhart wrote at a time—much like our own—when society appeared to be coming apart at the seams. In the midst of all that chaos and uncertainty, he captured the many forms and stages of the love of God, the mystic path, and the journey of transformation—in language so startling that he, too, was often accused of heresy.

Let me seek You

in the darkness

of my silence

 

and find You

in the silence

of Your light

 

which is

love shining

like the sun

flowing

like the river

 

and joying

like the heart.

Now, seven centuries later, this fresh, stunning rendering of gems from his work translates the essence of one of Christianity's greatest poetic and spiritual voices. This book conveys the heart of Eckhart's teaching on what it means to love God and embark on an authentic spiritual journey—a journey that is characterized by mystery, paradox, and an embrace of the unknown.

warriors of love

Warriors of Love

Rumi's Odes to Shams of Tabriz
$16.95 CAD
Paperback Book
Publisher: Watkins Media
Publication Date: September, 2017
ISBN: 9781786780294
In stock now: 4

In 1244 a man wrapped in a coarse black coat entered Konya and so into the life of Islam’s most celebrated poet and mystic: Mevlana Jalaluddin Rumi. A wanderer and spiritual vagabond, Shams of Tabriz proceeded to wrestle with Rumi’s soul. What he wanted from his protegé was for him to embody a wilder, more robust spirituality that would enable him to embrace life’s rawness more completely than any saint had done in the past.

Warriors of Love is a fresh interpretation of a selection of 49 poems which were written by Rumi as metaphors for his love for God as well as for his friend Shams, the Wild One. In a long introduction on the life and times of Rumi and his friendship with Shams, translator James Cowan also explores the historical facts of their encounter, Sufism, the Mevlevi Order of Dervishes, the new dimension that Shams brought to Islamic spirituality and the importance of friendship as a true path to God.

Regard the soul as a fountain, all creation as rivers;

While the fountain flows forth, rivers swell.

 

Dismiss grief from your mind and drink your fill;

This spring will not cease, eternal are its waters.

 

From the moment of your birth a ladder

Was placed before you to help you escape.

 

First you were mineral, a plant, then animal:

There’s no secret about your evolution.

 

Later you became man, equipped with knowledge, reason and faith

Look at your body, nature’s dust-pit, how perfect it has grown!

 

Leaving manhood behind, there’s no doubt you’ll become an angel;

The earth you’ll leave then, and head for Heaven.

 

Transcending the angel, become an ocean

Whose each drop will be larger than countless Seas of Oman.

 

With all your soul put behind you ‘Son’, adore instead ‘One’;

It doesn’t matter how your body ages, your soul’s young.

irena's children

Irena's Children

The Extraordinary Story of the Woman Who Saved 2,500 Children from the Warsaw Ghetto
$22.00 CAD
Paperback Book
Publisher: Gallery Books
Publication Date: September, 2017
ISBN: 9781476778518
In stock now: 3

This book is an extraordinary and gripping account of Irena Sendler—the female Oskar Schindler—who took staggering risks to save 2,500 children from death and deportation in Nazi-occupied Poland during World War II.

In 1942, one young social worker, Irena Sendler, was granted access to the Warsaw ghetto as a public health specialist. While she was there, she began to understand the fate that awaited the Jewish families who were unable to leave. Soon she reached out to the trapped families, going from door to door and asking them to trust her with their young children. Driven to extreme measures and with the help of a network of local tradesmen, ghetto residents, and her star-crossed lover in the Jewish resistance, Irena ultimately smuggled thousands of children past the Nazis. She made dangerous trips through the city’s sewers, hid children in coffins, snuck them under overcoats at checkpoints, and slipped them through secret passages in abandoned buildings.

But Irena did something even more astonishing at immense personal risk: she kept a secret list buried in bottles under an old apple tree in a friends back garden. On it were the names and true identities of these Jewish children, recorded so their families could find them after the war. She could not know that more than ninety percent of their families would perish.

Irena's Children is a fascinating narrative of the extraordinary moral and physical courage of those who chose to fight inhumanity with compassion. Irena survived the war, and lived to the age of 98. Much later in life, she was able to meet many of the “children” whose lives she had saved. Hers is a truly heroic tale of survival, resilience, and redemption.

study quran

Study Quran

A New Translation and Commentary
$67.99 CAD
Paperback Book
Publisher: HarperCollins
Publication Date: August, 2017
ISBN: 9780061125874
In stock now: 2

This new, accessible and accurate translation of the Quran offers a meticulous analysis of its theological, metaphysical, historical, and geographical teachings and backgrounds, and includes extensive study notes, special introductions by experts in the field, and is edited by a top modern Islamic scholar, respected in both the West and the Islamic world.

Drawn from a wide range of traditional Islamic commentaries, including Sunni and Shia sources, and from legal, theological, and mystical texts, The Study Quran conveys the enduring spiritual power of the Quran and offers a thorough scholarly understanding of this holy text.

Beautifully packaged with a rich, attractive two-color layout, this magnificent volume includes essays by 15 contributors, maps, useful notes and annotations in an easy-to-read two-column format, a timeline of historical events, and helpful indices. With The Study Quran, both scholars and lay readers can explore the deeper spiritual meaning of the Quran, examine the grammar of difficult sections, and explore legal and ritual teachings, ethics, theology, sacred history, and the importance of various passages in Muslim life.

With an introduction by its general editor, Seyyed Hossein Nasr, here is a nearly 2,000-page, continuous discussion of the entire Quran that provides a comprehensive picture of how this sacred work has been read by Muslims for over 1,400 years.

The Quran contains above all a doctrine about the nature of reality on all its levels, from Absolute Reality Itself, that is, the One God, to the reality of creation both macrocosmic and microcosmic… The Quran also deals fully with the nature of human beings. It teaches us who we are, why we were created and placed here on earth, what our goal in life is… The Sacred Text deals with every aspect of human concern, from the deepest intellectual questions and the most lofty spiritual issues to the mundane matters of ordinary life. It is at once therapeutic and didactic… As the living Word of God, it is the ubiquitous companion of Muslims from the cradle to the grave and provides the spiritual and religious space within which they are born, breathe, live, and die.

path of centering prayer

Path of Centering Prayer

Deepening Your Experience of God
$18.50 CAD
Paperback Book
Publisher: Sounds True
Publication Date: July, 2017
ISBN: 9781622038664
In stock now: 3

In the teachings of Jesus, there are prayers, and then there is prayer—the silent, loving communion with the divine, beyond words or ritual. With Father Thomas Keating’s book Open Mind, Open Heart, hundreds of thousands discovered the transformative power of Centering Prayer as a form of Christian meditation. Now, in The Path of Centering Prayer, Keating’s senior student and friend David Frenette reveals the profound depths of this practice, making it easier for meditators to deepen their connection with God.

Beginning and experienced practitioners alike will benefit from this fresh voice, at once eloquent and clear, as they explore the key insights and principles of Centering Prayer. Teachings include:

  • Guided instruction in the sacred word, sacred breath, and sacred glance practices
  • Gentleness and openness: the way of letting go and letting be
  • Experiencing a deeper sense of God in meditation and in everyday life
  • Many other contemplative practices and teachings founded upon the wisdom of Fathers Thomas Keating and Thomas Merton.

Practicing centering prayer awakens one to deeper meaning, as life itself becomes a spiritual journey. With centering prayer and Christian contemplation, instead of just a belief, God becomes a living reality.

Has your spiritual path grown routine or unfulfilling, or is it at a crossroads for new discovery? For all Christians who seek to move closer into “The Presence,” The Path of Centering Prayer offers guidance in this rewarding and time-honored meditation practice, to help break through obstacles and illuminate the way.

“This beautiful book... expands the map of the known Centering Prayer universe... gently reshapes fundamental building blocks of the Centering Prayer teaching... David’s work will breathe significant new life into your personal practice.” —Rev. Cynthia Bourgeault, author of Centering Prayer and Inner Awakening

David Frenette is a leader and senior teacher in the Centering Prayer movement, and a friend and advisor of Father Thomas Keating for 30 years.

living presence

Living Presence

The Sufi Path to Mindfulness and the Essential Self
$20.00 CAD
Paperback Book
Publisher: TarcherPerigee
Publication Date: May, 2017
ISBN: 9780143130130
In stock now: 5

Here’s a completely revised and updated 25th anniversary edition of the classic work on Sufism that Jack Kornfield called, “A heartfelt modern illumination of the Sufi path, filled with the fragrance of the ancients.”

In Sufism, the mystical branch of Islam, presence is the quality that describes a heart-filled state of mindfulness, an experience of being conscious in the present moment. It is only in this present moment, Sufi teachings reveal, that we can connect with the Divine, and the Divine can live through us.

A shaikh (teacher) in the Mevlevi Order founded by Rumi, Kabir Helminski is one of the world’s most recognized teachers of Sufism. In Living Presence, Helminski lays out the basic principles of Sufism, and how these ideas can lead to the experience of presence. In this inspiring work, readers will learn how to cultivate presence in their lives through:

  • Finding a balance between the outer stimuli of the world and our inner reactions to them
  • Harnessing faithfulness and gracefulness
  • Learning about the parallels between ancient spiritual wisdom and modern psychological knowledge
  • Meditation and contemplation to discover more meaning in daily life

With unique clarity, this book describes how presence can be developed to vastly improve our lives. Drawing on the work of the beloved Sufi poet, Rumi, as well as traditional material and personal experience, this book integrates the ancient wisdom of Sufism with the needs of contemporary life.  

If Sufism has a central method, it is the development of presence and love. Only presence can awaken us from our enslavement to the world and our own psychological processes, and only cosmic love can comprehend the Divine. Love is the highest activation of intelligence, for without it nothing great would be accomplished, whether spiritually, artistically, socially, or scientifically...


There are many ways for the human ego to usurp even the purest spiritual values. The true Sufi is the one who makes no claims to virtue or truth, but who lives a life of presence and selfless love. More important than what we believe is how we live.”
 

*


You cast us like sunlight upon the earth.
And our light, passing through the body
as if it were an open window to our Source,
returns, purified, to You.
                                            —Rumi

holistic islam

Holistic Islam

Sufism, Transformation, and the Needs of Our Time
$21.50 CAD
Paperback Book
Publisher: White Cloud Press
Publication Date: May, 2017
ISBN: 9781940468556
In stock now: 4

Islam once gave birth to a great civilization that respected religious diversity, freedom of conscience, and scientific thought, and Islamic knowledge contributed to the birth of humanism in the Renaissance. Today’s world is desperately in need of a spirituality that is free of dogma, based in experiences not beliefs, one that can reconcile the human and spiritual realms.

In his new book, renowned spiritual teacher and Sufi sheikh Kabir Helminski, gives us a compelling interpretation of spiritual or holistic Islam that will hearten contemporary Muslims looking for a faith suited for our times, and providing non-Muslims a brilliant introduction to this rich spiritual tradition. Helminksi's holistic Islam is an emerging force in the world. It is reflected in the rise of the popularity of the writings of Jalal ad-Din Rumi who is loved by followers of all faiths and none.

Helminski shows how it is the great Sufi teachers of the Islamic tradition who show the way to this universal wisdom. Holistic Islam is an expression of the primordial religion of humanity that recognizes a journey through levels of consciousness leading to the transformation of self and the mature human being. While all religions have a tendency to decline into sectarianism, legalism, fundamentalism, and superstition, humanity is never without the presence of realized human beings who have shared the knowledge and practice of communion with Ultimate Reality. Holistic Islam is a spiritual antidote to extremism and fundamentalism, established on a clear Quranic basis. Holistic Islam uses Quranic arguments to establish a spiritually progressive Islam.

Also by Kabir Helminski are The Pocket Rumi Reader and The Knowing Heart.

spiritual ecology

Spiritual Ecology

10 Practices to Reawaken the Sacred in Everyday Life
$16.95 CAD
Paperback Book
Publisher: The Golden Sufi Center
Publication Date: May, 2017
ISBN: 9781941394182
In stock now: 4

This book offers inspiring and practical guidance for reconnecting to the sacred in everyday life and transforming our relationship with the Earth. Describing the power of simple, daily practices such as Walking, Gardening, Cooking with Love, and Prayer, this small book supports profound changes in how we think about and respond to the ecological crisis of our times.

Spiritual Ecology: 10 Practices to Reawaken the Sacred in Everyday Life follows our groundbreaking Spiritual Ecology: The Cry of the Earth, now in its second edition, which included spiritual perspectives on climate change, species loss, deforestation, and other aspects of our present environmental crises from renowned spiritual teachers, scientists, and indigenous leaders. That book drew an overwhelmingly positive reaction from readers, many of whom are asking: What can I do?

Spiritual Ecology: 10 Practices to Reawaken the Sacred in Everyday Life answers that question with inspiring, personal anecdotes from the author Sufi teacher Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee and simple practices we all can do. Rooted in the mystical foundation of the worldès great spiritual traditions, with a particular connection to Sufism, these timeless practices remind readers of our deep connections to life, each other, and the Earth, and invite a return of meaning to our desecrated world.

As Rumi says, "there are a thousand ways to kneel and kiss the ground," and it is this sacred ground that is calling to us, that needs our living presence, our attentiveness. This small book offers simple ways to reconnect so that we can once again feel the music, the song of our living connection with the Earth.

Among Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee’s other books are Darkening of the Light and For Love of the Real.