Letter from the Editors
Since the printing of our last issue, it seems to us that the United States has entered a period of political and cultural dis-ease. Fear and uncertainty abound. Anger and resignation are pervasive. And yet, as appears to be the way with such moments in time, there are glimmers of inspiration and hope peeking through the darker clouds of our collective frustration. Many people are engaging in public conversations and debate in new ways. Voices for economic justice, environmental protection, and solidarity are getting louder in spite of the counter narratives.
We would never want to participate in the illusion that our little independent magazine or the individual efforts of our contributors will alone save us from our worst fears. We will not perpetuate that kind of myth. But we ask you to consider what happens when voices are brought together, shared, and united in the quest for justice, peace, and reconciliation. Ideas and practices spread through networks of relationships.
This publication is about putting forward models and creative explorations of ways we can be with and see ourselves, others, and the planet earth during times of upheaval—like this time we are in now. Our hope is that the thoughts and experiences that resonate with you will spread perspective, faith, and action throughout your lives and relationships.
We invite you into these pages to explore how the sacred and the active can and must unite so that we may find our way forward together. Allow yourself to be taken on a journey with Andrew Harvey, exploring how the teachings of tantra connect to and inspire a sacred activism that can help change seemingly intractable problems. Reflect on what it will take to tackle the environmental crises of our time with Devi K. Lockwood. Hear how the Reverend Fred Small took a leap into the unknown, responding to the call to climate justice and activism.
Read about artist David Kupferman’s sacred rituals of meditation and painting and see the lyrical paintings that result from his practice. Gain a deeper understanding of the value of daily spiritual practice with singer and spiritual teacher Snatam Kaur and connect those ideas to the teachings of resilience and rites of passage offered by Dr. Joan Borysenko.
Writer, teacher, and translator of the mystics Mirabai Starr shares a deeply personal story about her journey from suffering to compassion and how it continues through her connections with homeless youth. And Pat Schneider, in an equally personal story, reflects on how to teach people to tap into their own original voices in order to become effective writers and also to develop greater self understanding. There is all this and more in these pages.
While each of these pieces and the many more you find in these pages stand alone as testaments of courage, faith, living, and loving, together the expressions here begin to create a conversation about what it takes individually and collectively to tap into hope and to take responsibility for our own role in making the world a better place.
In peace & love,
Perry, Elissa, and Nadia