Lectures from Andrew Harvey

Sacred Activism

Andrew Harvey will present his vision of the contemporary world crisis in both its desperate and positive aspects. He believes that the fundamental and most urgent issue of present day activism is to call us all to a new way of being and doing in the world, the way of Sacred Activism.

Sacred Activism is the fusion of the most profound and grounded mystical knowledge and peace combined with focused, wise, radical action in order to preserve the environment, ensure human rights, protect all animal species and transform the political, economic and cultural systems that engender war and the continuation of obscene and devastating poverty.

Andrew will explain the five types of service that need to be fused together to create Sacred Activism. He will also describe the Seven Laws of Sacred Activism, those vital principles of intention and practice, which exemplify his understanding of the primary mystical traditions, both East and West. Additionally, Andrew will share his profound understanding of the sacred practices in which Sacred Activists will need to ground themselves, in order to become calm, courageous and wise enough to remain centered and compassionate in extreme and difficult situations.

Son of Man–Consciousness and the Transformation of the World

Based on extensive historical research and twenty-five years of study of Gnostic gospels and Christian mystical tradition, Andrew Harvey will describe a more inclusive image than the Christ of the traditional Church; he will present a vision of Jesus as Son of Man, as humanity’s supreme mystical revolutionary and Sacred Activist.  Andrew will describe a Son of Man not intent on being worshipped and not concerned with creating a church; he will introduce to us a Son of Man who achieved a new and intimate relationship to the Transcendent, reflected in a new and immanent human-Divine dialogue, echoed in a new  and vital response to the ego-Self dialogue within the human soul; a Son of Man who’s life and life-costing commitment to this new relationship challenges us to accept our own place in this essential dialogue; a Son of Man who sought to galvanize others to claim their own divine identity and its all-embracing love consciousness, to act with its power and passion for justice and for the transformation of institutions and conditions that are no longer life giving to the world.  Special attention will be given to Jesus’ radical liberation teaching in the Gospel of Thomas and to the vision and writings of Father Bede Griffiths.  A four-fold way, supported by six mystical practices, and elucidated by the eight mysteries and thresholds of Jesus’ journey will be explored as part of a direct path to the Kingdom of God.

Carl Jung wrote, “This path to the primordial religious experience . . . is like a still small voice, and it sounds from afar.  It is ambiguous, questionable, dark, presaging dangerous and hazardous adventure; a razor-edged path to be trodden for God’s sake only, without assurance and without sanction.”

Rumi: The Way of Passion

The 13th-century Persian poet, Jalal-ud-Din Rumi was the supreme mystic poet of humanity and is now the most-widely read spiritual writer in America.  Andrew Harvey has been studying Rumi’s work for 30 years and will present his electric vision of Rumi’s life, mystical journey, and Divine philosophy, stressing their essential importance to the massive transformation that is taking place in our contemporary crisis.  Special emphasis will be placed on an understanding of Rumi’s transfiguring relationship with his beloved Shams and on the roles of revelation, ecstasy, adoration, and suffering in authentic mystical growth.  For Andrew Harvey, Rumi is the supreme poet and exemplar of that force of sacred passion that all Sacred Activists now need to fuse themselves with so as to discover the boundless energy that they will need to continue to work for love and justice in a dangerous world.  Detailed readings of Rumi’s most incandescendent poems will be given, and practices that help cultivate and nourish sacred passion will be shared from the depths of the Sufi tradition.

The Revolution of the Divine Feminine and the Era of Passionate Enlightenment

Andrew Harvey believes that the survival of humanity depends upon the fullest possible restoration of the powers, passions, and glories of the Divine Feminine.  In some of his most important books – The Divine Feminine, The Return of the Mother – Andrew has shared his vision of the radical transformation of awareness and action that a reclaiming of the fullness of the Divine Feminine would engender.  In this vision, the recovery of the Divine Feminine makes possible, for the first time on Earth, the significance and truth of the Sacred marriage: a full fusion of the sacred masculine and sacred feminine on every level, a union of “the feminine powers of the psyche [namely] intuition, patience, reverence for nature, and knowledge of the holy unity of things” with “the masculine energies of rule, reason, and passion for order and control” to birth a new humanity and a new era of passionate enlightenment, an era in which human beings will awaken to their full potential and embody divine love in action.

In his workshop, Andrew will relate his vision to the contemporary crisis; he will share his ten sacred suggestions of the Mother and what he considers to be the six most potent practices of the realization of the divine feminine, drawn from Hinduism, Buddhism, Taoism, Christianity, and the indigenous traditions.  He will describe a sacred wisdom that “does not separate heaven from earth, does not split spirit from body, and does not divide prayer from action.”  Special emphasis will be placed on the reemergence in our time of the Dark Feminine and the archetype of the Black Madonna, and on the gifts the Dark Feminine brings of transmuted outrage, passionately compassionate energy, and endurance in the face of ordeal.  These gifts, Andrew believes, are essential to the success of Sacred Activism.  The core of the workshop will be his presentation of the seven different aspects of the Black Madonna that Sacred Activists need to understand and integrate if their service is to be truly humble, effective, and transformative.

The Message of India

Andrew Harvey’s entire work and his vision of Sacred Activism have been profoundly shaped by the experience of India and its magnificent and still-vibrant spiritual traditions.  Drawing on a rich array of sacred texts and poems by Kabir, Mirabai, Ram Prasad, and others,  Andrew will present an overview of these traditions and concentrate especially on the five areas of Hinduism that he considers most important to our contemporary transformation – the vision of the Self in the Upanishads, the south Indian mysticism of Shiva Nataraja, Shiva the Dancer, Tantra, Ramakrishna’s vision of the Divine Motherhood of God, and Sri Aurobindo’s and the Mother’s revolutionary synthesis of eastern and western understandings of evolution in a new vision of divinization of the body.  Five ancient Hindu practices related to each of these areas will also be offered.

Direct Path Yoga – The Embodiment of the Sacred Marriage of Body and Soul

Pierre Tielhard de Chardin wrote, “Fuse the powers of the sacred heart with the energies of the awakened body and you can transform everything.”  Andrew Harvey believes that the birth of a new divine humanity that is trying to take place in the depths of our contemporary crisis depends upon a radical union of all the opposites that have traditionally been kept separate: a radical union of transcendence and immanence, heaven and earth, mind and heart, body and soul, mystical awareness and radical action.  Essential to this fusion of opposites is a living experience of the divine nature of the body and the calm and glorious energies that this awareness can release.

For five years, Andrew has been working with a powerful and skillful yoga teacher, Karuna Erickson (one of Rodney Yee’s most trusted pupils) to create a revolutionary, but easily accessible sacred marriage of mystical teaching and practice with yogic asanas.  This sacred marriage of the power of hatha yoga with the wisdom and practice of mystical experience, Andrew believes, creates the crucible for the formation of a healed, healthy, joyful, divine, humanity and also provides the kind of energy and grounded strength that Sacred Activists will need to be effective in our precarious world.  A seven-part body-prayer practice, a comprehensive vision of the sacred marriage, and teachings and asanas related to the five great joys that come from the realization of the union of transcendence and immanence will be offered.

Andrew Harvey and Karuna Erickson have been teaching this Direct Path yoga in Canada, the US, and France and have been immensely heartened by the enthusiastic reaction to this vision.  Clearly it is now time to make their evolving work more available (www.yogakaruna.com).