Thanks for visiting my blog-site.
I am a poet, writer, and professor at Utah State University, in Logan, Utah, where I live with the writer, Jennifer Sinor, and our two boys Aidan and Kellen.
I’m the author of the poetry collections, The Empty Boat, A Calendar of Crows, House Under the Moon, and the study of Walt Whitman, Whitman’s Ecstatic Union. You can my essays in such places as the Buddhist magazine, Shambhala Sun.
Raised Catholic, in college in 1970s, I discovered yoga meditation, and became deeply involved in a meditation tradition called Ananda Marga. I became a meditation teacher and nearly a sanyasi, a yogic monk. However, after some seven years, I become disillusioned with that tradition, suffered a spiritual crisis (of which I’ve had several!), and migrated to Buddhism. I practiced as a Buddhist for some fifteen years. But in the last fifteen, feeling the lack of a devotional tone in Buddhism, I’ve returned to a yogic practice, after finding my spiritual teacher, and returning to a bhakti-yoga practice.
Bhakti is a devotional spiritual tradition, first mentioned in the Bhagavad Gita, which scholars think was written around 500 to 200 BCE. In the ninth century, CE, a powerful bhakti tradition appeared in south India and spread throughout the subcontinent. It is rose in many instances from the lower classes and in many forms tends to be anti-caste, anti-authoritarian, non-doctinaire, and iconoclastic. Bhakti often incorporates poetry, music, singing, and dancing in its practices, as well as meditation and study of scriptures. The famous poet Kabir is a good example of an iconoclastic bhakti-poet. Mirabai and Tukaram are others. Famous bhakti teachers include the nineteenth-century Ramakrishna, the twentieth-century Yogananda, Muktananda, Ma Indira Devi, and of living teachers, Mata Amritanandamayi, India’s “hugging saint,” is a good example.