More About the Author
Forty years of daily meditation practice led me to become professor of comparative religions, (CUNY), to found both the Forge Institute & The Journal of Consciousness Studies, and to a rethinking of the spiritual goal in our complex modern lives. That's why I wrote "Enlightenment Ain't What It's Cracked Up to Be: A Journey of Discovery, Snow and Jazz in the Soul". It answers the question, what if you spent years of your life seeking spiritual enlightenment, but were looking in the wrong place over a long time? It's happening right now to millions of seekers around the world.
Told in often poetic prose, it offers new direction for people looking for a sane and healthy spiritual pathway in our increasingly confusing world.
Here's a longer bio, if you're interested: My curiosity and confusion about my early spiritual experiences led me to a Ph.D in Comparative Religions (Columbia U), where I specialized in the nature of and philosophical issues around mystical experiences and the spiritual life. I used to be called, back in my academic days, "one of the leading voices in the academic debates on mysticism," I suppose because of my work in the international scholarly debate about mystical experiences, which came to be known as "The Katz-Forman debates." That was the work for which I was awarded quite a number of grants and recently an honorary doctorate from the beautiful Lund University, Sweden.
Before I resigned, I was a tenured professor of religions at Hunter College of the City University of New York and a professor at Vassar College, Union Theological Seminary and the New School for Social Research, where I often taught courses on mystical experiences and spiritual goals in every tradition. I hear that my books are still used in classes around the world. How cool is that?
But many of my insights about the spiritual path and goal came from my work as founder and Executive Director of the Forge Institute for Spirituality and Social Change, and the Forge Guild of Spiritual Mentors and Teachers, a non profit dedicated to helping people from any religion or spiritual path find the depths of soul together. If you're interested, take a look at www.GoDeeperTogether.org
I suppose you should know I also co-founded and became an executive editor of The Journal of Consciousness Studies , which has become the principle journal in the field of consciousness studies (no, please don't send your articles to me). And then there are the ten scholarly books on spirituality, mysticism, consciousness and world religions. You might be interested in Grassroots Spirituality: What It Is, Why It Is Here, Where It Is Going (Imprint Academic), which won the Bross Prize for the Best Manuscript in Religion, 2000; The Problem of Pure Consciousness (Oxford University Press); and a second from Oxford, The Innate Capacity. One of my favorite underappreciated books was Meister Eckhart: Mystic as Theologian (Element Books). For the academically inclined, you may like Mysticism, Mind Consciousness (SUNY Press).