In May and October of 1968, Trappist monk and author Thomas Merton offered two extended conferences at Our Lady of the Redwoods Abbey, a Cistercian women’s community in Northern California. Comprising over twenty-six hours of previously unpublished material, Thomas Merton in California covers a variety of topics including ecology and consciousness, yoga and Hinduism, Native American ritual and rites of passage, Sufi spirituality, and inter-religious dialogue, along with extended discussions on prayer and the contemplative life. Practical and applicable, as well as searching and inspired, Thomas Merton in California is essential for Merton readers and scholars, and all those interested in deepening their spiritual lives.
"Merton in California gives readers the privilege to sense for themselves the formidable creative charge of those encounters as if they were there. What higher praise could there be for this book?”
~ Br. David Steindl-Rast, OSB, monk, author, co-founder of grateful.org
Co-edited with Thomas Cattoi
A New Gnosis: Comic Books, Comparative Mythology, and Depth Psychology
Praise for Merton & Hinduism:
"This will be the standard source book for future studies on Merton and Hinduism.... a beauty and bounty not to be missed." ~ Ron Dart, The Merton Journal
"...a major scholarly contribution to the fields of Merton studies and comparative mysticism."
~ Cristóbal Serrán-Pagán y Fuentes, The Merton Annual
I have always valued lived practice alongside the academic study of religion. The wider frame and developmental background of my own work emerges from a decades-long personal journey that incorporates aspects of contemplative Christianity and embodied spiritual practice with formal academic training in religious studies, theology, and Jungian depth psychology. My dissertation, completed through the California Institute of Integral Studies (2015), applied C.G. Jung's alchemical psychology to select spiritual texts from mystical Christianity and yoga traditions. Additional training in Trauma Studies further informs my approach to the classroom and scholarly research. I value service to the wider academic community and currently sit on the Steering Committee of the Mysticism Unit for the American Academy of Religion. My academic teaching and public scholarship intersect the areas of depth psychology, comparative mysticism, and the life and writings of 20th c. Trappist monk and inter-faith pioneer, Thomas Merton. I currently serve as Co-Chair of the Mythological Studies MA/PhD program at Pacifica Graduate Institute in Santa Barbara, California, where I teach the following courses:
Christian Mysticism and the Medieval Imagination
Depth Psychology and the Sacred
Methods and Contemporary Issues in Religious Studies