Reclaiming Our Spirituality
Count me a team-member of the interspiritual movement. I am in sympathy with the goals of The Coming Interspiritual Age by Kurt Johnson and David Robert Ord, a grand, ambitious work with an optimistic vision of future global unity. Kurt Johnson’s mental scope on display here is astonishing. A polymath, he was for thirty years a distinguished scientist at the Museum of Natural History, penned an award-winning New York Times best seller about Vladimir Nabokov and butterflies, and regularly contributes to Wikipedia, all attesting to the breadth of his discussion of how humanity came to its current crises of religious conflict and spiritual dis-ease. Johnson and Ord’s ability to weave facts into sweeping historical narrative lends strength to their conclusions.
In this freewheeling book, Kurt Johnson and David Robert Ord attempt a truly daunting task: to tell the story — one that reaches back fourteen billion years — of what they call “the planet’s emerging unity consciousness,”1 or, in terms of their mentor Wayne Teasdale, the emerging Interspiritual Age. The authors define interspirituality as “the sharing of ultimate experiences across traditions,” “a more universal experience of the world’s religions, emphasizing shared experiences of heart and unity consciousness.” Fundamentally, however, interspirituality turns out to be monistic: “the entire religious experience of our species,” they write, “has been a single experience.”
Is there any hope for real change in the human condition? Kurt Johnson and David Ord certainly think so, and I am grateful to them for The Coming Interspiritual Age and its optimism. But I wonder…
This month marks the publication of The Coming Interspiritual Age (Namaste) by Kurt Johnson and David Ord. The vision they sketch delivers its insights from a multitude of sources and disciplines and comes to conclusions that will be applauded and criticized. Whether it resonates with you or not, it offers an affirmative, healing perspective of a world clearly in trouble on many fronts, so it deserves our attention.