Is your ‘inner self’ mind or heart or heart-mind?


My answer is the human spirit – her own and her pupils. How might we construe that spirit? My answer is as the flow of ‘spirit-as-the-life-force’ (chi?)

One analogy for the ‘flow of spirit-as-the-life-force’ is water flowing. Another analogy lies in the flow of energy as dancer dances. Another metaphor for ‘the flow of spirit-as-the-life-force’ is that of white light. These metaphors are the opposite of the mechanistic ‘human-as-computers’ or the older ‘humans-as-machines’ metaphors.

Since I see teachers as ‘developers of consciousness’ I here am focusing on the idea of the life-force, in a normal person, culminating in (raised) consciousness. I also use the term interiority to refer to consciousness. By interiority I mean ‘affective awareness’ and ‘moral awareness’ as well as ‘cognitive awareness’ – hence my preference for ‘heart-mind’ as a term for interiority.

I am grateful to Martin Cortazzi for pointing out that a unitive presentation of heart-mind has a long history. He tells me that heart-mind corresponds to ‘xin’ in Chinese, (sometimes transcribed as ‘hsin’). (Professor Peter Harvey of the University of Sunderland also points out that ‘citta’ in Sanskrit, as used in Indian Buddhism, has the same meaning)

Hansen (1989 p. 97) explains that ‘We use ‘heart-mind’ to translate xin. This is because the philosophical psychology of ancient China did not use a cognitive/affective contrast in their talk of well-honed human performance…’

He also points out (1992 p. 20) that ‘The common translation of xin as heart-mind reflects the blending of belief and desire (thought and feeling, ideas and emotions) into a single complex dispositional potential.’
Tu ( 1985 p. 32) provides further evidence in saying:

…the Confucian hsin [xin] must be glossed as ‘heart-mind’ because it involves both cognitive & affective dimensions of human relations. This ‘fruitful ambiguity’ is perhaps the result of a deliberate refusal rather than an unintended failure to make a sharp distinction between conscience & consciousness. To Yang-Ming [Wang Yang-Ming, neo-Confucian philosopher 1477-1529] consciousness as cognition & conscience as affection are not two separable functions of the mind. Rather, they are integral aspects of a dynamic process whereby man becomes aware of himself as a moral being. Indeed, the source of morality depends on their inseparability in a pre-reflective faculty.

LOOK FOR THE ONENESS’ – how I achieved happiness via the Inter-spiritual Worldview’

‘LOOK FOR THE ONENESS: how I achieved happiness via the Inter-spiritual Worldview’

Summer Conference hosted by Crawley Interfaith Network & Faith in Sussex – Saturday 4th June 2016 – from 1.00 to 6.00 PM – at WORTH ABBEY

Roger – Dr Roger Prentice – developer of the One Garden inter-spiritual groups

INTRO: Thanks for giving me 5 mins to share a little about our One Garden inter-spiritual project. My PhD was on Holistic Education which I’ve now extended into ‘full-time’ research on ‘Inter-spiritual living & studies’.

1 Violent conflict around the world is seen every day showing that we need to recognize the Oneness that is beyond, and at the mystic heart, of all of the great Traditions.

2 Perhaps the way to Peace & Happiness is to reach out to all great Traditions, because they all teach the same 3 things – at their mystical core.

3 Four years of developing the One Garden groups, my swan song project, brought me happiness. What have I learned? – that there are many paths to the summit of the mountain, but only one summit.

4 To use a different metaphor there are a number of gateways into the state of awareness we call the One Garden. But beyond the great Traditions, and at the heart of them, there is a mystical core. A verse attributed to Rumi says;

Out beyond ideas of wrongdoing and rightdoing,
there is a field. I’ll meet you there.

When the soul lies down in that grass,
the world is too full to talk about.

From within the One Garden listen to some of the voices from our world spiritual heritage.

5 From the Hindu Bhagavad Gita we are told
“Like two birds of golden plumage, inseparable companions, the
individual self and the immortal Self are perched on the branches of the
self same tree. The former tastes of the sweet and bitter fruits of the
tree; the latter, tasting of neither, calmly observes.

“The individual self, deluded by forgetfulness of his identity with the
divine Self, bewildered by his ego, grieves and is sad. But when he
recognizes the worshipful Lord as his own true Self, and
beholds his glory, he grieves no more.”

6 Ibn Arabi tells us;
O Marvel! a garden amidst the flames.
My heart has become capable of every form:
it is a pasture for gazelles and a convent for Christian monks,
and a temple for idols and the pilgrim’s Kaa’ba,
and the tablets of the Torah and the book of the Quran.

I follow the religion of Love: whatever way Love’s camels take,
that is my religion and my faith.

7 Rebbe Abraham Joshua Heschel tells us;
The search for reason ends at the shore of the known;
on the immense expanse beyond it
only the sense of the ineffable can glide.
It alone knows the route to that
which is remote from experience and understanding.

Neither is amphibious:
reason cannot go beyond the shore,
and the sense of the ineffable
is out of place where we measure, where we weigh…….

Citizens of two realms, we must all sustain dual allegiance:
we sense the ineffable in one realm;
we name and exploit reality in another.

8 From the Christian Bible we know that God is love. To put that as a Zen master might put it; “No love, no God.” You cannot know if you cannot love – this is put is put most tellingly in John’s gospel;

Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love. – John 4:8 (NIV)

Someone else said we should remember ‘God is a verb not a noun’. Creation is not so much an act as a process.

9 Of course there are many other teachers and teachings At the core of all of the great traditions we find 3 challenges: 1) Awaken more. 2) Detach from egoistic self more. 3) Serve others better.

For me these pointers are essential;

Inter-spirituality is ‘the recovery of the shared mystic heart beating in the center of the world’s deepest spiritual traditions.’ Rabbi Shapiro

“Mysticism is the art of union with Reality.” – Evelyn Underhill

“Reality shines as ‘Awareness in the Self’, and as ‘Existence in the world.’” – Rupert Spira

Meditation is, “Moment-to-moment presence that excludes nothing and sticks to nothing.”- Joan Tollifson

Nonduality: Nondual experience is what you have when your egoistic self & its ‘boundaries’ are temporarily ‘dissolved’ – & there is only ‘Oneness as Awareness ‘.

10 Remembering that, “Concepts are delicious snacks with which we try to alleviate our amazement,” it is the ‘Nondual realization of Awareness’ that unites us.

The only attitude that unites us more powerfully is the humility to know that as we stand before the Infinite Mystery that we call God, like Socrates, we must admit that “I know one thing – that I know nothing”

11 These realizations are what has brought me the gift of happiness. If your heart and mind are centred on Oneness you are, I suggest, already in the One Garden – whatever Tradition you are in – or none.
If you would like to visit a One Garden session please contact me.

CONTACT: Roger – Dr Roger Prentice

If you love Oneness beyond, and at the heart of, the great Traditions please read this – ‘I = Awareness’

Yesterday in our ‘One Garden’ session we celebrated the fact that at least one academic has bridged the gap between academic research and teaching and the age-old wisdom core of the great Traditions.

Yesterday we used a paper entitled ‘I = Awareness’ by a professor of psychiatry Arthur J Deikman.

If you are at all interested in inter-spirituality, nonduality or interfaith understanding this paper is absolutely key!

You can read, or re-read, the paper here –

Professor Deikman’s spiritual path included Buddhism and Sufism.

deikman Arthur J

Arthur J. Deikman (September 27, 1929 – September 2, 2013) was a clinical professor of psychiatry at the University of California, San Francisco, and a member of the editorial board of the ‘Journal of Humanistic Psychology’ and ‘Human Givens’. He was also a contributor to ‘The Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease’.

About Deikman and his work –

Articles by Arthur J Deikman – Dig deep there are many more articles on several layers down –

Books by Arthur Deikman –

What exactly is inter-spirituality? – See William Keepin's article in this FREE eBOOK: Song of the Earth

Keepin Song of the Earth

What exactly is inter-spirituality?

Probably the best introductory article is by William Keepin. It is entitled ‘InterSpirituality: Bridging the Religious and Spiritual Traditions of the World’.

It is to be found at – p194 – of this wonderful free ebook online as a PDF – The editors are Maddy Harland and William Keepin.


The CONTENTS of the book are;

Foreword Mark Richmond ix
Introduction Maddy Harland & William Keepin xi

1 The Holistic Worldview
Inner Net of the Heart: William Keepin 2
The Emerging Worldview of Oneness
Towards A Biomimicry Culture Elisabet Sahtouris 18
of Cooperation
A Gaian Worldview Ross Jackson 25
The Dual Origin of the Universe May East 36
Living the New Worldview: Hildur Jackson 41
Global Justice & Saving Three Billion
Years of Evolution
Human Being as Miniature Galaxy William Keepin 47

2 The Awakening & Transformation of Consciousness
Earth as Sacred Community Thomas Berry 52
The Urgent Need for Spiritual Awakening Jetsunma Tenzin Palmo 58
Spiritual Responsibility at a Time Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee 63
of Global Crisis
Living in Auroville: a Laboratory of Evolution MARTI 73
Who Am I? Why Am I Here? Hildur Jackson 81
Living the New Worldview
The Great Transformation: The Opportunity David Korten 91
The Great Turning Joanna Macy 93
& Chris Johnstone
The Shambhala Warrior The Venerable Dugu Choegyal Rinpoche 99


3 Reconnecting With Nature
Ancient Prophecies and The Vision Quest Hanne Marstrand Strong 102
as a Path to Oneness
The Declaration of the Sacred Earth Gathering The Wisdom Keepers 108
Riding the Paradox: A Colourful Middle Way Pracha Hutanuwatr 110
& Jane Rasbash
The Bioregional Vision Gene Marshall 116
Voices of our Ancestors Dhyani Ywahoo 118
Pathways to Integration: Maddy Harland 120
Rediscovering the Song of the Earth
Seeding the Round Planet Stephan Harding 127
Japanese Haiku MARTI 129
4 Health & Healing
The World as a Holowave: Dieter Duhm 134
Theory of Global Healing
Planetary Healing: Maddy Harland 142
A New Narrative
Healing Ourselves Maddy Harland 148
The Power of Reconciliation and Forgiveness Duane Elgin 155
The Intelligent Heart Michael Stubberup 163
& Matias Ignatius
Peace Circle Dialogues: Karambu Ringera 170
I Am Because You Are
The Cracked Mirror Wangari Maathai 174
Maher – Rising to New Life: William Keepin 179
Interview with Lucy Kurien
Health in the Global South Rashmi Mayur 185
A Healthy Lifestyle Dr Cornelia Featherstone 187
The Dream of the Children Sabine Lichtenfels 190


5 Socially Engaged Spirituality
InterSpirituality: Bridging the Religious William Keepin 194
and Spiritual Traditions of the World
The Spiritual Imperative Satish Kumar 202
Guidelines for Socially Engaged Spirituality William Keepin 214
Silence and the Sacred: William Keepin 220
Interview with Craig Gibsone and Robin Alfred
Spirituality in Damanhur Macaco Tamerice 235
A Brief Snapshot of Auroville, India MARTI 242
Plum Village: MARTI 244
A Spiritual Perspective on Community
The Awakening of the World, the Village, Hildur Jackson 246
the Nation and the World:
The Sarvodaya Vision for the Global Future
A Hopi Elder Speaks The Elders Oraibi 254

Four key articles for understanding interfaith as inter-spirituality

1) Best introduction –

NB the whole of the book in which Keepin’s superb piece is free online HERE –

2) Mysticism as the Crossing of Ultimate Boundaries – by Wayne Teasdale –

3) The Mystical Core of Organized Religion – David Steindl-Rast –

4) Aldous Huxley’s Perennial Philosophy is HERE –

You might also enjoy

Introduction to the Bhagavad-Gita (Translation of Bhagavad-Gita by Swami Prabhavananda and Christopher Isherwood.) by Aldous Huxley –

TAGS: Aldous Huxley, interspirituality, Perennial Philosophy, inter-spirituality, interfaith, interfaith as inter-spirituality, Mysticism as the Crossing of Ultimate Boundaries, Wayne Teasdale, William Keepin, The Mystical Core of Organized Religion, David Steindl-Rast,


I’m afraid of losing my obscurity. Genuineness only thrives in the dark. Like celery. – Aldous Huxley – Those Barren Leaves (1925). – cf –

My current focus is inter spirituality as the…

My current focus is inter-spirituality – as the current challenge to interfaith and as ‘the changeless faith’. Earlier in my life the focus was Holistic Education. Of course the interesting question arises, “What does inter-spiritual living and knowing have to contribute to Holistic Education?”

The model developed, SunWALK, is a model of what it is to be human – Caring, Creative and Critical (Critical in the sense of being able to analyse and be reasoning and scientific) these three inner dimensions of the human spirit all being formed dialectically in the social context of Culture. In that context we find three corresponding forms namely Humanities, Arts and Sciences. See here –

Laura Ellen Shulman wrote some very interesting advice to her students – here –

She ends the section by saying;
‘Learning comes from within, deep within. ………………….
A successful learning outcome is the generation of transformative knowledge. Transformative learning is that which creates a change (transformation) in the learner. As you work your way through any course, you should consider how you are growing and changing as a learner and as a person through your involvement in the course. Explore the material being studied not just from an academic standpoint but through the personal meaning you derive from it.’

To such analyses I want to know where and how we involve gnostic knowing (I understand there is an Arabic counterpart ‘irfan’. My model doesn’t present ‘spirituality’ as separate except for the black dot at the centre which represents the well-spring of the life-force that through each of us flows. All dimensions are potentially spiritual – and gateways to the spiritual, in several ways and levels.

I don’t yet know what other faith traditions have to contribute on this topic of ‘inter-spiritual in Holistic Education’- although Abraham Joshua Heschel’s ‘Who is Man’ is a masterpiece, as is Eckhart Tolle’s three books.

I was interested to know that Baha’i teachings include a relevant range of principles and actions including these;

1 the use of workshops

2 meditation – ‘Through meditation doors of deeper knowledge and inspiration may be opened.’

3 ‘Abdu’l-Bahá talks about the value of speech and questioning.

‘Most ideas must be taught through speech, not by book-learning. One child must question the other concerning those things and the other child must give the answer. In this way – they will make great progress. For example, mathematics must also be taught in the form of questions and answers.’ (‘Abdu’l-Bahá, 1918)

These can all be found here –

TAGS: inter-spirituality, Holistic Education, Laura Ellen Shulman, transformative learning, meditation in learning, dialogic learning, dialectical learning, Baha’i pedagogy, Abdu’l-Baha,

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If you are inter-spiritual what part have the following in your consciousness and life

If you are inter-spiritual what part have the following in consciousness and life

being born again
the mystical,
service to others,

etc. ?