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Perennial Philosophy Books


mystictrek
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I'm a great fan of the perennial philosophy or mysticism. Aldous Huxley wrote THE PERENNIAL PHILOSOPHY in the 40s. It's part of my Bible! So is MYTH AND RITUAL IN CHRISTIANITY by Alan Watts. Watts left Christianity behind and became a Zen Buddhist but he demonstrates in this book how our Christian wisdom tradition fits into the perennial philosophy. He offers great insights into the seasons of the church. I have believed for a long time that the church year with all of its seasons is the best teaching tool we have.

 

I would love to share thoughts about these 2 books and other PP books with members of this forum.

 

I will wait patiently for sharing here since I know how busy the holiday season can be. But Advent is a good time to share thoughts about PP. I am more and more convinced that the discipline of being still is the only essential discipline since it slowly but surely opens us up to the greater reality, heaven.

 

+ "Be still and know that I am God."

 

+ "You do not need to do anything; you do not need to leave your room. Remain sitting at your table and listen. You do not even need to listen; just wait. You do not even need to wait; just become still, quiet and solitary and the world will freely offer itself to you to be unmasked. It has no choice. It will roll in ecstasy at your feet." -- Franz Kafka

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The Mystic Heart by Teasdale discusses mysticism from a "Hindu-Christian" perspective, with wise words from Buddhism, Judaism, Sufism, and "natural mysticism" as well.

 

"Coming of the Cosmic Christ" by Matt Fox is a wonderful Christian mysticism book that deals with the healing of the Earth.

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Excellent topic!

 

I've actually had trouble finding that Watts book in stores. It's one of the few I don't have. But I have read Behold the Spirit, twice within six months actually, and I had the same feeling. He just gets Christianity so deeply and profoundly. I suppose he just didn't find that level of understanding in 97% of what passes for Christianity in the West, and felt he had to look for it elsewhere. It's too bad -- 20th century Christian spirituality could really have used more books by him!

 

You're right, advent is a great time of year to consider this topic. I was just thinking about that on the way into work this morning! I'm coming to the end of a three-year process of reunderstanding the Christmas story as an allegory of the descent of the One.

 

Ken Wilber's books are also great modern sources for PP, especially The Eye of Spirit.

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PS - I've been researching Advent over the past few days. I've never celebrated it (and really wasn't even sure what it was).

 

I've been considering fasting from an Orthodox perspective (no meat or dairy at all, and 2 days a week of 1 meal only). I ran it by my husband and he just gave me "the look." :rolleyes:

 

I've read that the Orthodox tradition views Advent as a time of "penitence" (similar to Lent), but that most Protestants view it as more of a celebration. I don't know how the Catholic tradition views it. :huh:

 

Anyway, this is OT for a book discussion, but I've been meaning to post a new topic about Advent, but you brought it up first. ;)

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I'm a great fan of the perennial philosophy or mysticism.  Aldous Huxley wrote THE PERENNIAL PHILOSOPHY in the 40s.  It's part of my Bible!  So is MYTH AND RITUAL IN CHRISTIANITY by Alan Watts.  Watts left Christianity behind and became a Zen Buddhist but he demonstrates in this book how our Christian wisdom tradition fits into the perennial philosophy.  He offers great insights into the seasons of the church.  I have believed for a long time that the church year with all of its seasons is the best teaching tool we have.

 

I would love to share thoughts about these 2 books and other PP books with members of this forum.

 

I will wait patiently for sharing here since I know how busy the holiday season can be.  But Advent is a good time to share thoughts about PP.  I am more and more convinced that the discipline of being still is the only essential discipline since it slowly but surely opens us up to the greater reality, heaven. 

 

+ "Be still and know that I am God."

 

+ "You do not need to do anything; you do not need to leave your room. Remain sitting at your table and listen. You do not even need to listen; just wait. You do not even need to wait; just become still, quiet and solitary and the world will freely offer itself to you to be unmasked. It has no choice. It will roll in ecstasy at your feet." -- Franz Kafka

 

 

Greetings Mystictrek,

 

 

I share your belief that being still is the only essential discipline of the spiritual quest. Some great sage said..."Silence is the only voice of our God"..to that I say Amen!

I look forward with great anticipation to your sharing of these books on PP.

 

 

Blessing to you,

 

 

Jerryb

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