On the horizon are several publications by John Roger Barrie. One is a forthcoming spiritual novel, which has already received six glowing endorsements from noted professionals:
“Some of us are hoping that human cultural evolution, amidst the enormous challenges that lie ahead, will produce an integral planetary spiritual vision capable of shedding the manifold dysfunctions of the world’s religions while preserving their rich veins of psychological wisdom. For such a day to dawn we will have to tell many stories (for all worlds are made of stories) about how such a vision might feel and sound, preparing the etheric soil from which it may one day spring, revealed more than concocted. John Roger Barrie’s … and his probing conversations with men and women who have found their ways to his forest hermitage and who nickname him the … , is one such story, an engaging and illuminating trek into the multiple religious understandings that foreshadow a new universalism.” —Philip Novak, Ph.D., Sarlo Distinguished Professor Emeritus, Dept. of Philosophy and Religion, Dominican University of California, and bestselling author of The World’s Wisdom
“ … is a thoughtful, engaging fruit of the spiritual imagination, a work of fiction that nonetheless bears within it many simple, powerful truths. It is beautifully written, concrete and free of pretense. … , its central character, comes across as wise and unpresuming, something of a recluse who is nevertheless a precious guide for those who find him and come again and again to hear his words. Through it all, John Roger Barrie himself shines in his honesty, his own voice reaching us in his telling of … story.” —Francis X. Clooney, S.J., Ph.D., Parkman Professor of Divinity and Professor of Comparative Theology, Harvard Divinity School, Cambridge, MA, and author of numerous books and articles
“The frame story for this book is a set of talks given by … , a retired Catholic priest living in California. His perspective is both mystical and universal, and the talks cover a wide range of experiences.
_____”His approach is both optimistic and thoughtful, and the book shows a very good example of interfaith dialogue, where ideas on religious experience from some major world religions are discussed and compared. It incorporates a mystical perspective into situations in everyday life, and it has a depth approach that is sadly lacking in much modern religious discourse. It would be useful for students of religion who have learned about the political and institutional side of religion, and wish to learn about the experiential and mystical side at its best.” —June McDaniel, Ph.D., Professor Emerita of the History of Religions, Dept. of Religious Studies, College of Charleston, SC, and author of Lost Ecstasy and many other books and writings
“John Roger Barrie’s luminous text takes the reader on a voyage into the heart of the world’s great religious traditions. Told with humor and gentle wisdom, Barrie’s tale of the wise … is at once deeply personal and utterly universal. It is a timeless parable of seeking, finding, and then integrating spiritual wisdom into human life, a task as urgent now as it has ever been.” —Elizabeth M. G. Krajewski, Ph.D., Adjunct Assistant Professor and World Religions Instructor, Humanities Department, Colby-Sawyer College, New London, NH
“… is a refreshing and much-needed return to spiritual basics. Its main character, the larger-than-life … , imparts a universal vision of religion that is right in the mainstream of the centuries-old mystical traditions, although colorfully and contemporarily presented. John Roger Barrie has produced a captivating, timeless story that should be required reading for any modern-day spiritual seeker.” —William H. Forthman, Ph.D., Professor Emeritus of Philosophy, California State University, Northridge, CA, and co-author of the textbook Religions of the World
“‘ … ‘ is part memoir and part guide for those seeking a deeper spiritual path in life – both beginning and experienced practitioner. Within these pages John Roger Barrie chronicles his quest for a life of deeper meaning: his explorations into various meditative disciplines, religious expressions from the east and west, along with his frustration at the highs and lows of his practice. Through his relationship with … he learns that progress and setbacks are all part of the process and that even one’s teacher can be beset by similar frustrations. The solution? To look for what is positive and enlivening in all events on the journey. This text provides a beginning for a life of spiritual exploration.” —Charles G. Krajewski, M.Div., Ordained Pastor with the American Baptist Churches USA (retired)
Another forthcoming publication is Mysticism: Contemporary and Classical Pathways to the Infinite. This is a compilation of eight writings on contemporary and classical spirituality that were originally delivered as lectures at the Friends of the Spirit study group in Northern California. These writings have been thoroughly revised, expanded, updated, and in some cases re-referenced for this new edition, to be published in due course.
A number of prominent persons have enthusiastically endorsed Mysticism: Contemporary and Classical Pathways to the Infinite:
Swami Swahananda, the late, longtime senior minister of the Vedanta Society of Southern California praised a chapter on the Bhagavad Gita: “Your interpretation accurately conveys the spirit and intent of this timeless Indian scripture.”
Michael Murphy, legendary Esalen co-founder, extolled one chapter on the spiritual journey: “This is a beautifully distilled, crystal-clear, supremely elegant primer for the contemplative life, rooted in the greatest spiritual masters who have graced this planet. Within its utter simplicity there resides wondrous sophistication.”
Jonathan Kirsch, prolific, bestselling author/attorney, expressed appreciation for a chapter about David, “John Roger Barrie’s insightful reading of the biblical life story of David and the Psalms offers a fresh and illuminating perspective on both the biblical texts and the traditions attached to them. Barrie makes a crucial distinction between David the king and David the Psalmist, and that’s exactly where the sparks begin to fly in his provocative work. He has something important and compelling to say to the pious student of the Bible as well as the contemporary reader who turns to the Bible as a work of literature.”
Professor Huston Smith, the late, noted authority on the world’s religions, referred to one chapter on consumerism vs. spirituality as, “Excellent and important. In his insightful survey, John Roger Barrie makes a compelling case for living the spiritual life and not becoming mired in the trappings of consumerism.”
Reverend Canon Christopher Seal, A.B., MDiv., Pastor Emeritus of Trinity Episcopal Church, Nevada City, California and author of an excellent digest on Contemplative Prayer, commended a chapter on Christ: “Christianity, as traditionally presented, places Jesus at the center but often forgets that He is a universal teacher as well as Messiah. In his essay on Christ, John Roger Barrie skillfully, and with great clarity, distills the essence of Jesus’ practical instructions for bringing about the union of heaven and earth in daily life.”