As a result of the 1999 Parliament of the World's Religions, Wayne Teasdale and Omie Baldwin convened a group called "the Spiritual Life Circle" to come to terms with the value and effectiveness of spirituality across religions and cultures. The aim was to "inquire into what works in all forms of the spiritual life to open minds, expand hearts, and transform lives into radiant examples of compassion, kindness, and love-in-action." A further goal was to create a book about the spiritual adventures of individuals who are rooted in one tradition and have experienced other religious traditions. The 30 essays here cover a wide variety of journeys in the community of faiths and reveal the international flavor of what Teasdale has called the emerging movement of interspirituality.
We live in a multifaith culture, and our faith stories are becoming more and more complex given the abundance of resources and teachers available to every individual. Eboo Patel, a Muslim, shares the story of how Dorothy Day, a Catholic, became his first faith hero. Jeff Genung describes his spiritual adventures as a member of the Church of Conscious Harmony, a Christian community which has been host to spiritual teachers from all traditions. Mirka Knaster shares how her insight as a Buddhist has been enriched by seeing ethical speech as a spiritual practice. Rajal Regan outlines some of the challenges she faces as a Hindu raising children in a mutlifaith family. Rory McEntee proclaims Christianity's "capacity for a synthetic and integrative understanding of the other religions." And Russill Paul writes about some of the dangers and delights of the interspiritual path.