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Philip Goldberg

Review: The Life of Yogananda by Philip Goldberg

Review: The Life of Yogananda by Philip Goldberg

by Paul Chaffee

The religions of India – Jainism, Hinduism, Buddhism, and Sikhism – are less familiar and stranger to most Americans than the Abrahamic religions, which have dominated America since Columbus.

Four Paradoxes on the Path of Yoga

Four Paradoxes on the Path of Yoga

by Philip Goldberg

Adapting the perennial wisdom of the Yoga tradition to contemporary life and a diversity of religious and spiritual perspectives is, and always will be, a work in progress. It is also a highly individual project, with few one-size-fits-all answers to the conundrums and challenges that arise. That’s why the Upanishads call the spiritual path a razor’s edge: You have to tread carefully, with keen vision, intellectual discernment, acute intuition, and a really good sense of balance.

Stuck on the Spiritual Spectrum

Stuck on the Spiritual Spectrum

by Philip Goldberg

A dispute at a small evangelical college; the death of a Supreme Court Justice; the presidential election campaign – these and other recent events remind me, yet again, that our religious attitudes and spiritual orientations are almost infinitely diverse. Not only are there vast differences among adherents of every tradition, but also diversity within the diversity within the diversity.

The Gita and Me

I first became aware of the Bhagavat Gita in the mid-1960s. I was a college student taking my first tentative steps onto my spiritual path, reading all I could about the Eastern traditions instead of my assigned textbooks. It was all second-hand at first. It seemed that every writer and scholar I admired – Ralph Waldo Emerson, Henry David Thoreau, Aldous Huxley, Joseph Campbell, Alan Watts, J.D. Salinger – wrote with great admiration of the Gita. Thoreau apparently read it every day of his famous retreat on Walden Pond: “In the morning I bathe my intellect in the stupendous and cosmogonal philosophy of the Bhagavad Gita … in comparison with which our modern world and its literature seems puny and trivial.”

Visiting India, the Motherland

I first became intoxicated by India as a college student in the 1960s, through the movies of Satyajit Ray, the music of Ravi Shankar and, most of all, the revelations of the Bhagavad Gita and the Upanishads. My first exposure to those sacred texts came second-hand, through the work of interpreters like Alan Watts and Aldous Huxley and the fiction of Herman Hesse, Somerset Maugham, and J.D. Salinger. The Beatles put me over the top when they took up Transcendental Meditation and made their landmark pilgrimage to Rishikesh. The total effect of those cross-cultural hinges was to turn this existentialist/atheist/social activist into a dedicated spiritual seeker. I’ve been immersed in yogic practices and Hindu texts ever since.

Remembering B.K.S. Iyengar – The Light of Yoga

Last fall, I had the honor of meeting with B.K.S. Iyengar, who died on August 20, at his yoga institute in Pune, India. Dressed in a crisp white kurta, a perfect match for his snowy hair and famously majestic eyebrows, he had graciously squeezed in a visit with me between institute business and his receipt of an award from the local government. At age 95, he had taught a yoga class that morning.

Bhakti – The Path of Devotion in India and the West

One Path in Hindu Spiritual Practice

Review: American Veda by Philip Goldberg

Will the Circle Be Unbroken?

Gurus, Seekers, and Being Accountable

Can You Trust Your Guru?

Western Transmitters of the Dharma

Early Adopters of Eastern Wisdom