Important News For Minority Faiths

March 28, 2014

This week I'm working on something very very important!

The American Correctional Association which sets the standards for all correctional systems in the United States, is currently working on creating a standard for qualifications for Administrators who oversee prison religion programs.  There is strong conversation in their corner, that training in religious pluralism or a background in world religions is not necessary to be hired to oversee religion programs in state and federal prisons.  And if they are successful in pushing forward that position in the next few months, it will take a decade or so to turn it around!

As one of the foremost experts in the country on this subject (as founder and Director of the National Correctional Chaplaincy Directors Association and as the Minority Faith Issues Chair for the American Correctional Chaplains Association, and with over 20 years advising over twenty separate states prison systems on accommodating religious diversity in prisons) I am appalled that such a viewpoint could even be on the table.  As a result, I must now once again take on the whole system to keep twenty years of hard work from being reversed.

There is no way a person can possibly oversee religion programs in government institutions without appropriate training.  In fact, it has been the very lack of such training that has clearly caused so many years of discrimination toward minority faiths.

The one good point in our corner, is that the American Correctional Chaplains Association is expressing that religion administrators must at least have chaplaincy training.  While this is helpful, it falls far short of what's really required.  The reason for this is that most chaplains in the United States are either Catholic or Protestant with a much smaller number of Jews and Muslims in the background, and they, with all of their well meaning, are far from understanding the issues faced by minorities.

In the end, the problem will only be solved by hiring a significant number of minority faith chaplains, and by forcing religion administrators to be well educated in diversity training, religious pluralism, and the world religions.

I am now constructing letters to and contacting key individuals in the American Correctional Association and other agencies to build a case to stop this in its tracks.  Wish me luck.

If you've got it to spare, send me good energy on this one.  There are very few individuals taking this fight on, and as most of you know, I already have a very full plate!

 

The jungle outside Kollur

February 21, 2014

February 16, 2014

Kerala, India

I'm sitting in a clearing deep in the jungle next to an amazing tree.  

The sound of tropical birds and other animals of the forest can be heard from every direction and it is good to get away from the town and all of the people and just connect with nature.

There are tigers and black leopards here and wild peacocks and chickens too.  Also huge deer-like animals similar to an elk, but slightly smaller.  There were elephants here in the past, but the tow...


Continue reading...
 

Kollur, India: The sacred mountain.

February 15, 2014


February 15, 2014

Kerala, India

Today here in the jungle was amazing beyond words.  We took a several hour jeep ride high up onto the sacred mountain in the center.  The ride was both rough and dangerous and very very steep.

When we reached the end of the track, we got out and climbed up a steep path for miles, continuously going up until we could see for a hundred miles.  The trail was carved onto the edge of a cliff that dropped off thousands of feet.  It caused me to have vertigo w...


Continue reading...
 

Last Day at Mahayaga 2014

February 14, 2014


Feb 12, 2014

Mahayaga

Last day

Here we are again and it is the last day of this prestigious event.  Tomorrow we leave for Kohlor to bless a new temple and will stay there for four days.  Then back to London, and finally back home.  It's beginning to feel like a long trip.

As I write, I am sitting in the front row with thousands of people behind me along with my friend Lady Windsor from England and my new Kogi friend, Calixo.  One can feel the intensity of the multitudes of people wait...


Continue reading...
 

Mahayaga

February 12, 2014


Feb 10, 2014

Several days have passed since my last blog and as you can imagine, quite a bit has happened.  We met with Satya and made a great connection, and then I had the opportunity to connect with a number of the other speakers and spiritual leaders.  All in all, there are about a dozen of us.

I met a Kogi Elder from the high mountains of Columbia.  His tribe is quite unique in that they have no conflict in their society.  They were one of the tribes who were present when the Con...


Continue reading...
 

February 4, 2014 Palakaad India

February 8, 2014

Mahayaga


Blessings Everyone.


We have arrived in Palakaad safely after a typical Indian road journey. This means we have successfully navigated through all of the challenges of passing trucks on narrow highways around blind curves, playing chicken with ongoing traffic, avoiding livestock on the road, and constant horn honking.


Unfortunately while we all made it to Pakalaad alive and intact, Katrina, our key coordinator, has succumbed to food poisoning or bad water from the journey a...


Continue reading...
 

The adventure begins - Mahayaga in Kerala February 2014

February 2, 2014

February 2, 2014

Greetings All.

On Wednesday morning  January 29th, we  started another adventure as myself and the first two of my three person support team departed for India.  I will be co-facilitating the Mahayaga in Kerala which is a huge multi-million person spiritually based event, directed toward bringing peace and harmony to all on our planet, and I will also be giving several key speeches and meeting with other peace workers and political and spiritual leaders.

My pea...


Continue reading...
 

England

January 1, 2014

As many of you know, as a consequence of my work toward world peace & planetary sustainability, I had the distinct honor to be invited to be a guest for the holidays on the Royal Windsor estate on the Welsh-English border with the Earl of Plymouth, the Viscount & Viscountess Windsor, and other members of the Windsor family .  

The Lord & Lady Windsor were wonderful and gracious hosts to me throughout the holidays, and treated me as an honored guest.  They allowed me to have the opport...


Continue reading...
 

Kumbh Mela- Blog 14

February 20, 2013
February 8, 2013
Kumbh Mela
Allahabad, India

I haven't written for several days now, primarily because of the sheer level of participation in many auspicious events.  There have been too many for me to share fully, but I will touch on just a few to give you a flavor of what it's like to be me at this time and in this place.

I'd like to begin by saying that I have been treated here in India with the upmost respect, and that I have not only been granted the recognition of being a spiritual leader i...
Continue reading...
 

Kumbh Mela - Blog 13 Harriet Nettles

January 28, 2013
My blog today will be based on the talk that Sadhvi Sarawati gave to the Divine Shakti Festival group, who are sharing wonderful yoga classes here at Kumbha Mela.  I am grateful for her amazing ability to take spiritual concepts that I have heard for maybe thirty years, and present them in a way that touches me deeply. She is Swami Sarawati’s assistant, but he turns to her to speak on his behalf- his respect for her is evident.

When we speak of the divine feminine, we are speaking of the wom...
Continue reading...