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The Seven Pillars: Journey Toward Wisdom

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In Search of a Pledge

Deepa Gulrukh Patel

It is hard for me to believe that my first blog post about The Seven Pillars appeared in December 2014. Now, just over a year later, here I am at the last pillar, The Pledge.… read more »

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The Courage of Imagination

Deepa Gulrukh Patel

As I write this blog, I am on my way to Dachau to be part of an honoring ceremony for Noor-un-Nisa Inayat Khan. Noor was a Special Operations agent during the Second World… read more »

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Wisdom’s Cry

Deepa Gulrukh Patel

High in the Swiss Alps, I have felt protected from the constant stream of information about the state of the world by the beauty of the alpine meadows. The grandeur and stillness of the mountains… read more »

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What Happens When You Fall?

Deepa Gulrukh Patel

To live in the Great Mystery is for me the greatest adventure of my life. When we were developing The Seven Pillars e-book, we came up with a series of questions as an entryway into… read more »

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My Sacred Garden

Deepa Gulrukh Patel

“To feel the intimacy of brothers is a marvelous thing in life. To feel the love of people whom we love is a fire that feeds our life. But to feel the affection that… read more »

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Que suis-je?

Deepa Gulrukh Patel

What am I?As a young child growing up in Kenya, I was magnetically drawn to the rich, red soil. My love for its sandy softness was a bane to my mother who constantly… read more »

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Crossroads

Deepa Gulrukh Patel

I’m once again at that place in the journey of life where I think I need to make a choice about which direction to take. My mind is buzzing with the usual questions: What if… read more »

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Detail of "Interconnectedness" by Beverly Decker

The Heart of Violence

Shams Kairys


Seven Pillars' submission guidelines say: "We especially welcome pieces that address issues of the day (environment, terrorism/war/violence, inequality, religion and tolerance, etc.) from a wisdom perspective." The articles and poem included in this update are amongst the grittiest we have yet published, each touching on the anguish at the core of violence with heartbreaking yet uplifting insight and beauty. read more »

Excerpt from “American Icarus: A Memoir of Father and Country”

Chapter IV: Love and War in South America

Pythia Peay


The following excerpt describes my research into my father’s service during World War II as an airman for the Army Air Force Air Transport Command—a massive operation that supplied the troops abroad with ammunition, medicine, bombs, and money, and that ferried German prisoners and wounded soldiers—and how learning about this period in his life changed my perception of him and his wartime service. read more »

A Poem from “Monsoon Blues”

Elijah Imlay


I located a close friend, Jim Birdsall, nicknamed “Bird,” 25 years after the end of the war in Vietnam. He had the same nightmare every night until we reconnected. He wrote about them and asked me to turn them into a poem, out of which came healing and forgiveness. Here is the poem... read more »

Excerpts from “The Alchemy of Combat”

Larry Decker


Our goal, as therapists, is to help veterans expand their belief systems, through the construction of an ideal self, to integrate the traumatic information of combat and discover new inspiration. Combat changed how veterans perceive the world. As a result of combat, veterans have new information regarding life’s possibilities and actualities. However, their belief systems often aren’t able to integrate the information. The new knowledge is too big; it won’t fit into their existing ways of understanding. read more »

Excerpts from “BOY: A Woman Listening to Men and Boys”

Hathaway Barry


Everywhere I go now, I see men differently. I have loved and appreciated and felt exasperated by men in many ways —father, brothers, relatives, playmates, friends, lovers, mentors, colleagues, husband, ex-husband, son, long-term partners. I know the goodness of men. And yet, after more than a half century of living with them, I realize I am still mystified by much of their behavior. read more »

In Celebration of Trees

J. Ruth Gendler


I am drawn to the way trees hold light and air and qualities that seem invisible, their generosity, wisdom and silent, soulful eloquence. Making art about trees—which I have done all my life but am doing with much greater focus now—inspires me to look more deeply at the world around me and also the world inside, to draw closer to nature, and find new ways to root and take nourishment from light.

Printmaking is a wonderful practice to investigate and celebrate my love of trees. see the gallery »

Does the Universe have an Inner Life?

W.H.S. Gebel


According to Sir Arthur Eddington, a prominent astronomer who confirmed Einstein’s theory of General Relativity, 1927 was the year when it became possible to reconcile science and religion. It was the year of the Solvay Conference in Belgium where leading scientists met to discuss the newly emerging field of quantum mechanics. In marking that year as a milestone, Eddington was referring to the replacement of the strict determinism of classical physics by the indeterminacy implied by the uncertainty principle inherent in quantum physics. read more »

Spiritual Principles in Action

A Story for a Younger Generation

Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee


I grew up in an England still dreary in the post-war years. Rationing only ended the year I was born. In my childhood there was religion but no spirituality. I went to church every Sunday, sang hymns and recited prayers. But nowhere was there the suggestion of spiritual states of consciousness. Spiritual bookstores did not exist. Christian mystical writings were present but just as historical texts rather than experiences to be lived. It was a grey world aspiring to middle-class materialism—a TV, a washing machine, even a car! Then in the mid- to late-sixties, another color entered the spectrum. read more »

Happy Holidays & Your FREE Gift


Like you, we at Seven Pillars House of Wisdom share a deep concern for the future of humanity and the life forms of this planet. As we approach the end of 2015, we see signs of progress in the agreement in Paris on climate change. Yet acts of terrorism, racism, fear and calls for exclusion continue, challenging us to act from wisdom. Our hearts are moved. The issues that speak to us most deeply invite us to respond, to take one step toward new possibilities. read more »

Spiritual Inquiry, Part Two

Sirr al-Basir/Lee Irwin


In my first reflections on this subject, I explored the aspects of spiritual inquiry that are most immediately of concern, primarily in our relationship with others in the context of our developing global world. Now I want to explore those aspects of inquiry that are perhaps less obvious but equally important. In our encounters with others, we discover our differences and learn to negotiate those differences in mutually respectful ways. However, self-inquiry requires us to turn inward toward unexplored depths where certainty is less clear, and at times, painfully absent. There is a very profound reason for this absence, which will be revealed if we are courageous enough to fully acknowledge our own lack of insight or understanding, and to recognize our own limits. read more »

Parliament of the World’s Religions 2015

Reclaiming the Heart of Our Humanity


Almost 10,000 people of different faiths gathered for five days in Salt Lake City, Utah to join in the spirit of fellowship and service. Three of Seven Pillars’ board members, Darakshan Farber, Halima Lefkovitz and Rabia Povich, were among the attendees.

"The range of offerings was huge—almost 1,800 people gave presentations. More than 15 faith services were offered each morning, plenary sessions with keynote speakers occurred two times a day, and over 40 workshops were offered at any given time. Participants prayed, danced, sang, chanted, meditated, dialogued, walked in silence, or just listened." ~Rabia Povich see the gallery »

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