Prayers and Meditations
164 Pages

Prayers and Meditations


Introducing new reprints by Gerald Heard:
The Creed of Christ
The Code of Christ
Training for the Life of the Spirit
Prayers and Meditations
"There was a period in my early thirties when these four small books by Gerald Heard served almost as my bible. I read and reread them, and invariably found them to be uplifting and inspiring."
- Professor Huston Smith
"Gerald Heard was an inspiring voice for the life of the spirit. Wipf & Stock is to be commended that Heard's remarkable work is being made available to a new generation of spiritual seekers."
- Dr. William H. Forthman
"These prayers and meditations are traces of an experiment," writes Gerald Heard in his Introduction to Prayers and Meditations. "Seven were written by one of our ablest authors." That experiment was Trabuco College, which Heard founded in California in 1941. The ablest author was Aldous Huxley, Heard's sometime co-adventurer in mystical voyages.
Along with Huxley's seven contributions are selections by St. Albert, St. Anselm, Dionysius the Areopagite, William H. Forthman, and Margaret Gage. Heard penned all the others. Altogether these powerful reflections, "are present-day renderings of those thoughts and feelings which have been rising in men since they began to reach out to Him who is beyond the senses." Prayers and Meditations equips the contemporary spiritual aspirant with a wellspring of inspirational devotions, ever invoking, "the desire to remember constantly the all-pervading, transcendent Presence of God."



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Published 01 January 2008
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EAN13 9781725218062
Language English
Document size 14 MB

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Wipf and Stock Publishers 199 W 8th Ave, Suite 3 Eugene, OR 97401 Prayers and Meditations Selections by Gerald Heard, Aldous Huxley, and Others Edited by Gerald Heard Copyright © 1949 Gerald Heard Copyright renewed 1977 by Jay Michael Barrie Copyright transferred to The Barrie Family Trust Foreword/Synopsis: Copyright © 2007 by John Roger Barrie ISBN 13: 978-1-55635-096-2 ISBN 10: 1-55635-096-1 Publication date: 1/1/2008 Previously published by Harper & Brothers, 1949 Photograph of Gerald Heard by Jay Michael Barrie “Comments on Prayers and Meditations” Copyright © 2004 by The Estate of Marvin Barrett Acknowledgments: The Barrie Family Trust gratefully acknowledges the following permissions: “Comments on Prayers and Meditations” by Marvin Barrett reprinted by permission of The Estate of Marvin Barrett. “Seven Meditations” by Aldous Huxley reprinted by permission of Laura Huxley. The meditation on “Mortification” reprinted by permission of William H. Forthman, PhD. The meditation on “Purity” reprinted by permission of William H. Forthman, PhD, assignee to the publications rights of Margaret Gage.
Series Foreword
Gerald Heard (Oct. 6, 1889–Aug. 14, 1971) wrote nearly forty books during te course of a distinguised career. His Cambridge-trained, curiosity-ridden mind left no stone unturned in its intellectual investigations. His nonfiction topics ranged from istory to piloso-py, from psycology to religion, and virtually every-ting in between. hese issues were woven togeter by a single unifying teme—te evolution of consciousness. During te 1940s, after e ad relocated to America, after e ad rediscovered is religious roots, and after e ad begun a rigorous daily meditation practice, Gerald, as e was always known, mobilized is energies into establising Trabuco College in Soutern California. Trabuco was te first coeducational spiritual commu-nity in America to incorporate ecumenical, nonsectar-ian religious principles and practices. And practice te Trabuco attendees did, meditating tree times daily in order to accelerate te spiritual evolution of teir own individual consciousnesses. Having previously publised a dozen mostly aca-demic and popular science books, Gerald turned is at-tention to religion during tis war-torn decade. Gerald’s religious writings from tis period consist of eigt key contributions tat address practical and inspirational spiritual temes. Of tese, four primary Heardian reli-
Series Foreword
gious works are initially included in tis vital new Wipf & Stock series, wit more to follow. Collectively tese books comprise Gerald’s quintessential statements on te spiritual pat, and a person could conceivably use tese volumes as guidebooks for teir entire spiritual journey. And ere is Gerald at is very best—preacing te evolution of consciousness and offering practical advice on ow to attain it. Gerald’s rotating roles as visionary istorian, maverick cosmologist, and prescient piloso-per are all present in te background of tese religious works. But at te forefront is Gerald te practicing mystic and knowing docent, gusing fort an ebullient but sometimes cautionary narrative on traversing te spiritual pat from start to finis. His accounts, as con-firmed by classic mystics and traditional texts, derive from is own subjective experience. he ringing trut of is musings will cause te receptive reader first to reflect, ten to act, propelled by te stirring contagion of Gerald’s boundless entusiasm. In te 1940s, novelist Cristoper Iserwood wrote tat Gerald, “as influenced te tougt of our time, directly and indirectly, to an extent wic will ardly be appreciated for anoter fifty years.” hose fifty years ave now passed. Some of Gerald’s ideas ave fallen by te wayside, wile oters lie dormant still waiting to sprout. Yet a good many ave blossomed into unspoken cornerstones of contemporary tougt. he widespread establisment of religious communi-ties as become commonplace. Religious syncretism, ecumenical studies, and interdisciplinary, eclectic ap-proaces lie at te vanguard of progressive religious ii
Series Foreword
tougt. Contemplative meditation practices ave gained broad acceptance across a spectrum of diverse traditions. heories on te evolution of consciousness abound. Colleges and wole movements of tougt now regularly explore te transpersonal realm of pure consciousness. But wat makes Gerald’s farsigted approac to religion especially relevant now is wat made it relevant wen tese books were first publised—e is espousing timeless truts. he reader is supplied wit a map, com-pass, and numerous exortations of attainment, as well as warnings of te pitfalls to avoid wile embarking on tis singlemost important sojourn in life. Gerald offered no quick fixes or sortcuts. He advocated a wolesale restructuring of one’s entire being troug, “te skilled, conscious training of our spirits.” He advanced a o-listic approac long before olistic approaces became popular. Witin tese books is found Gerald’s essential message: “Our wole life must become intentional and purposive, instead of a series of irrelevant events, adventures, and accidents. We must ourselves deliber-ately develop ourselves. hat evolution wic follows will sow itself in a treefold development: in growt of conduct, of caracter and of consciousness itself. he world exists for man to acieve union wit God. he meaning of all, te purpose and te end of all is one ting, seeing God.” Wen revisiting Gerald’s spiritual classics in tis new century, we are entering te very eart of religious experience. We are treading te pat trodden by seri-ous spiritual practitioners, be tey novices or seasoned iii
Series Foreword
mystics. We are undertaking a journey of utmost sig-nificance, leading to pulsating union wit God. As able guide and modern interpreter of mysticism, Gerald Heard nimbly and autoritatively beckons us toward te Goal tat eac of us was born to realize in tis very life. Jon Roger Barrie Literary Executor of Gerald Heard Nevada City, California January 22, 2007
hanks especially to Ted Lewis of Wipf and Stock Publisers, and Craig Tenney and Pyllis Westberg of Harold Ober Associates for teir valuable assistance in bringing tis series into print. For more information on Gerald Heard, visitgerald, te Gerald Heard Official Website.