Mystery Teachings from the Living Earth: An Introduction to Spiritual Ecology, by John Michael Greer
Weiser Books, 9781578634897, 140 pp., 2012
Reading Mystery Teachings from the Living Earth was a curious experience. I felt like I was reading two books at once: the first describing spiritual teachings we can derive from ecological laws; the second, how the mystery teachings are being misinterpreted and distorted by more modern spiritual movements.
Greer devotes much time to discussing why the belief that one can create one’s own reality is a partial truth and how popular spiritual movements promulgate that belief. He points out that this has been a corruption of the mystery school teaching that we are created by the reality that was here before us and that we always co-create with that reality. He nails it when he says: Continue reading
Thomas Berry, Dreamer of the Earth: The Spiritual Ecology of the Father of Environmentalism, edited by Ervin Laszlo and Allan Combs
Inner Traditions, 9781594773952, 160 pp., 2011
Dreamer of the Earth is a collection of essays written by intellectuals and eco-activists regarding the impact of Berry’s writings on their lives and philosophies as well as a lengthy essay by Thomas Berry himself. Thomas Berry was a Christian mystic, a student of Thomas Aquinas and Teilhard de Chardin his writings remain some of the most thoughtful commentary on the modern condition produced in the last 80 years.
Alan Combs’ introduction to the text is excellent, Continue reading
Green Hermeticism: Alchemy and Ecology, by Peter Lamborn Wilson, Christopher Bamford and Kevin Townley
Lindisfarne Books, 9781584200499, anti-copyright 2007
In 2003 Peter Lamborn Wilson gave a lecture titled “The Sacred Theory of the Earth” at a conference held in New Paltz, New York. This talk inspired a series of lectures and the coining of a new term “Green Hermeticism.”
The lecture given at the first conference became the first chapter of the present work, “The Disciples at Sais: A Sacred Theory of Earth.” Here he discusses the work of Novalis (Friedrich von Hardenberg), an early Germanic Romantic poet and philosopher, and contextualises him in terms of defining a new spiritual ecology linked to alchemy and hermeticism.
In “One the All,” editor in chief of SteinerBooks and Lindisfarne Books, Christopher Bamford, discusses creation myths, though I found his overview of alchemy more enlightening. He writes: Continue reading
Sacred Land: Intuitive Gardening for Personal, Political and Environmental Change, by Clea Danaan
Llewellyn Worldwide, 9780738711461, 266 pp. (incl. end notes appendix, sources and index), 2004
Last year was the first I attempted to grow anything in our vegetable garden. I knew I wanted to grow organic, but I went in more or less blind. It wasn’t a raging success, but we did get a few peppers and tomatoes. This is the book I wish I had read prior to starting my garden, unfortunately it wasn’t published then, but, lucky you, it’s out now. Continue reading
It is early evening, in mid-March, in Maryland. I am sitting in my bedroom, gazing out my window at the melting patches of snow which still cover large portions of the ground in these parts-and at the horrible gashes cut into the breast of Earth-Mother by the bulldozers of developers who have converted the beautiful fields, forest, and hedge- rows behind my house into the site of a future subdivision. The sun has just set behind the hill I call, privately, Cerne’s Knoll, for the deer I used to see there; now there are no deer, and precious few trees, left of this formerly vibrant woods. I reflect that the developer responsible is considered a pillar of his community-he sits on the board of trustees of my undergraduate college-and his church. I think on the connection between church and community: and on the at times chasmic dis-connection between church and land-community, and between the traditional Christian church and those who are not, whether by choice or happenstance, part of it. Continue reading