I arrived on Terra in the middle of the 20th Century, living my early years in the “deep South” (Smyrna, GA). I enjoyed a life of middle class privilege, taking for granted that all of my needs would be met. The railroad tracks that cleaved my neighborhood from the African-American children who went to separate and unequal schools subtly scarred my consciousness in ways I continue to discover. Life in Smyrna was “protected”, and I feel mourning about what I missed by not being exposed to more diversity at a younger, more tender age.
I feel blessed to have parents who never hit me, although fighting with peers was an integral part of daily life throughout much of my childhood. Wrestling matches and rock battles determined the pecking order in our local domination hierarchy.
My Dad worked for Lockheed Aircraft (an integral part of the Military-Industrial Complex) and created creative wood-working projects to salve his psyche. My Mom supported me in so many ways, to numerous to count, and loved to play games, read, contemplate and discuss spiritual matters. She was my first Spiritual Teacher. They both seemed dedicated to nurturing me and making sure that I would have a successful life.
At the age of 12, we moved to Marietta, GA and I transferred to a junior high school. Only 10 miles, but it may as well have been the moon. I’m still recovering! I suffered at the hands of bullies for being small, smart, and eager to please Authority. I developed habits of shyness and subtle and hidden patterns of self-loathing. As I passed through puberty I found my Inner Rebel, the kind that found a way to live within Consensus Reality while doubting and subtly challenging it. I became a “mystic” by age 15 delving into radical spiritual ideas, psychic powers and UFOs.
I “woke up” again and began enjoying life while at the University of Georgia where I majored in Journalism, Psychology and Fun. I created an alter-ego, radio personality Ernest Lee Pyus, a star of Friday night Alternative Wave Radio at WUOG. Once at a party (UGA was the number one party school in the country back in the day), a girl remarked after being introduced to me, “Wow, I thought you were tall and Black!” I also discovered the importance of a Spiritual Path, exploring several and settling in to studying deeply with my first meditation teacher, Roy Eugene Davis.
My post-graduate adventures took me to Cornucopia, an intentional spiritual community based on Ken Keyes’ Handbook to Higher Consciousness. There I met many life long friends, including my wife of 31+ years, Jori. We embarked on a Spiritual Journey of relationship based on the aspirations of unconditional love, deep honesty, and cooperative mutuality.
At Cornucopia, I began learning and integrating spiritual principles and methods that have contributed to my remarkably fulfilling and adventurous life, including Neuro-Linguistic Programming.
The birth of our first child, in 1981, coincided with the completion of the Workbook of A Course in Miracles. Our second child arrived only 17 months later, and raising two children while running a retail business became “Spiritual Graduate School”!
I am blessed now with two adult children, Jiva and Jaya who share my passion for compassion.
I’m living my dream, sharing Radical Compassion and Compassionate Leadership. The great adventure of life has now brought me to the North Shore of Maui, where Jori and I have begun establishing a new base to continue our contributions to an awakening planet.
Nothing brings me more joy than sharing my experience of engaged spirituality with others!