Sunday morning services at 11:00 am
2650 Fulton Street, San Francisco, CA
guests are cordially invited ♦ free will offering
  • Tales of Transformation from Chuang Tzu

    readings and book signing with Ray Vespe, PhD

    Date: 07/23/2017


    Ray will read tales reflecting the theme of transformation from the first seven Inner Chapters/Nei P’ien of The Chuang Tzu, an ancient Chinese Taoist work characterizing transformations in human being and living. The signed book will be available for purchase. The Chuang Tzu dates from c. 300 BCE and is the second most important book in the Spiritual and philosophical tradition of Chinese Taoism next to Lao Tzu’s Tao Te Ching. The first seven chapters are reputedly authored by Chuang Chou/Tzu who lived in Southern China from c. 365-286 BCE during the Warring States period in Chinese history (c. 475-221 BCE), a time of bloody internecine warfare among feudal states vying for hegemony.

    Ray Vespe is a former Faculty member of the California Institute of Integral Studies and Integral Counseling Center director, a retired MFT counselor, a long-standing student of the Spiritual/philosophical tradition of ancient Chinese Taoism and the author of 1) a Taoist trilogy that integrates the wisdom of the Tao Te Ching, The Chuang Tzu and The Lieh Tzu with the practice of psychotherapy/counseling and 2) one book identifying the 81 Tao Te Ching sayings as Spiritual passages in Soul-work, Soul-making, the enSouling process and Soul-journeying.



  • Integral Meditation: Experiencing the Essence of Being

    with Ted Nordquist, PhD

    Date: 07/30/2017


    By letting go of collective consciousness we enter the realm of pure awareness. We focus our awareness on the natural function of breathing. As we surrender in the Present Moment constantly attentive to our breathing, we sense the Divine Manifestation of That which we naturally are, we sense the Source of all Creation manifesting through us. The talk will point out typical ways in which we avoid Being. In our avoidance of Being we identify with thought processes which we have assumed are vital to our existence. This meditation goes to the essence of each individual’s experience of Being. There are no “techniques” to follow or theories to understand. This meditation affords each individual the ability to come home to the Self. This Self-realization opens the consciousness to That Divine Source which created and runs this universe.

    Ted Nordquist worked with Dr. Haridas Chaudhuri from 1971 – 1973 at the California Institute of Integral Studies (CIIS), then the California Institute of Asian Studies (CIAS). Ted’s parents, Gladys and Leo Nordquist, were members of Cultural Integration Fellowship since the mid-1960s and Leo Nordquist was Chairman of the Board of CIAS until his death in 1976. In addition to Asian Studies, Dr. Chaudhuri was Ted’s spiritual guide beginning in 1969. Other influences in Ted’s life were Mahatma Gandhi, Ramana Maharshi, and Sri Aurobindo.

    Ted taught at the University of Uppsala, Institute of Religious History, from 1976 to 1985. He founded Sweden’s first tofu manufacturing plant in 1980 and Northern Europe’s first non-dairy soy-based frozen dessert in 1988. Ted moved his Swedish family, his wife Anne-Marie and their three children, to Sonoma, CA in 1994. He continues to work developing non-dairy yogurts.

  • The Essence of Integral Yoga

    with Brant Cortright, PhD, professor, psychologist and author

    Date: 08/06/2017


    Sri Aurobindo and the Mother created integral yoga about 100 years ago and kept developing and enlarging it for the next 50 years. It is an extraordinarily inclusive and complex system of thought that includes a map of inner consciousness, an evolutionary understanding of life, a synthesis of the traditional yogas as well as an unparalleled integration of Indian philosophical systems. It’s so big that it’s hard to wrap one’s mind around it all.

    What is the central core of integral yoga? Its core is very simple, which adds to its beauty. Its innermost center is a method for realizing the Divine in this lifetime and transforming daily life. This talk will try to convey the essence of integral yoga and show how it is a powerfully practical approach to uplifting and spiritualizing our daily life in the world. At the present moment when the world seems increasingly chaotic, it offers an orienting vision that helps keep our focus amidst these challenging times.

    Brant Cortright, PhD, is a professor of psychology at the California Institute of Integral Studies in San Francisco. He is also a clinical psychologist in private practice. He is the author of Integral Psychology (SUNY Press), which integrates western psychology with integral yoga; Psychotherapy and Spirit (SUNY Press), which explores transpersonal psychology; and most recently The Neurogenesis Diet and Lifestyle (Psyche Media), which is an integral approach to brain health.

  • Sri Aurobindo and the Vedic Mystery Schools

    with Debashish Banerji, PhD

    Date: 08/13/2017


    The Vedas have traditionally been considered as ritual literature or nature poetry. Sri Aurobindo offers an alternative interpretation of the Vedic corpus as the earliest transformative psychology of the world, taught in mystery schools. This talk will attempt to outline the cosmology and psychology of the Veda along with the beings and mythic cycles that narrativize its sequences leading to a divine life and a divine world.

    Debashish Banerji is the Haridas Chaudhuri Professor of Indian Philosophy and Culture and the Doshi Professor of Asian Art at the California Institute of Integral Studies, San Francisco. He holds a PhD in Indian Art History from the University of California, Los Angeles. Since the 1970s, Banerji has been a student of Sri Aurobindo and the Mother’s teaching.