Dear Folks -
The title I gave the "life talk" I gave in Ordinary Life this past week was -
"Question Everything! Even This"
Our culture, which is clearly troubled, lures and seduces us into seeking "easy and comfortable" answers. If we keep doing this, we will keep getting the same sad outcomes we are getting.
This talk was partly inspired by something Jim Wallis wrote about the ninth anniversary of the war in Iraq. I quote him at length.
Then I look back at what was going on in this country in the 60s.
Looking back we can usually clearly see how "mistakes" and misjudgments were made. Sadly, we don't seem to be able to use this matter of perspective to change the direction we move into the future.
This section of the talk is partly my response to the tragic shooting in Connecticut.
I end with two bits: The Hidden Camera episode that reveals the inherent wisdom we all have and a story of Morgan Freeman's mother telling him that the best news in the world can be contained in an eight note scale on the piano.
The full text I spoke from is below.
To download the text click here Download 12:23:12 - Summary
To download the presentation slides click here Download 12:23:12 - Question Everything.key
To download the audio of the talk click here Download 20121223 - Mp3
Summary of December 16, 2012
Dear Folks -
Ordinary Life will meet this coming Sunday, December 23. There will be no gathering on December 30.
This week I began with a few remarks about the tragedy in Newton, Connecticut.
The "life talk" this week was about one of the core teachings found in all spiritual traditions - don't judge. The paradox involved is that though we cannot avoid making judgments, we can work at being non-judgments.
The full text I spoke from is below. Also, you'll find not only the presentation slides but also the cartoons about readings and pictures of the wildly Christmas decorated house.
To download the full text click here Download 12:16:12 - Summary
To download the presentation slides click here Download 12:16:12 - Just Playing Your Part
To download the audio click here Download 20121216 - Mp3 Read more
Dear Folks -
A number of years ago I went to to Marcus Borg after one of his lectures and said, "Marcus, I want you to know that I plagiarize - err, I mean use - your stuff a lot." His response was an enthusiastic, "Borrow freely, borrow freely." That was his way of encouraging the spread of religious and spiritual literacy.
Some of you have asked about using some of the presentation slides I use in Ordinary Life. Borrow freely, borrow freely.
By the way, the presentation slides for this week include several more optical illusions than were actually shown in class. Check them out.
Also, if you are looking for jokes and puns to use in your own presentations or for your own amusement, check out the joke section of my website. I update it regularly. The site is simply
* * *
This week in Ordinary Life I talked about how essential it is for us to move into non-dual mind to apprehend the truths of the spiritual journey. I called the talk -
Trapped in Freedom
If that sounds paradoxical, contradictory and mystical; it is.
The full text I spoke from is below. The audio version and the presentation slides can be found on the Ordinary Life website.
To download the text in pdf format click here. Download Summary
To download the presentation slides click here. Download 12:9:12 - Trapped In Freedom
To download the audio click here. Download 20121209 - Mp3 Read more
Dear Folks -
There is no text of yesterday's wonderful presentation in Ordinary Life. There is, however, a full audio version of Dr. Paul Ilecki's presentation -
The Spiritual Journey and the Illusion of Progress
I'm so grateful to Christian Anfosso for making this possible to our gathering.
Dr. Ilecki was a priest for 11 years and a monk at Snowmass for an addition four years.
He currently serves on staff of intensive Centering Prayer retreats for Contemplative Outreach.
You can go to
for more information.
His talk was much richer than any few words can summarize. To me, he highlighted the difference between change (self-improvement) and transformation. I encourage you listen to the presentation.
To download the talk in Mp3 format click here Download 20121202 - Mp3 Read more