From the preface:
“The idea of assembling a collection of my recent letters into a book was inspired by those who had asked me to write them in the first place. These selected letters, and the book itself, evolved organically, more as an ongoing, somewhat spontaneous dialogue over the Internet than anything else. Eventually, a few of my close friends and my wife suggested that they be published.
Keeping with its natural evolution, there have been minimal alterations made to the original text and to the sequence. Each letter is a response to questions or subjects initiated by friends and acquaintances, many of whom I met through the classes, seminars and retreats I have given these last 25 years or so. Some letters are in response to personal questions; others were written to groups of persons who had shown interest in a particular subject. Certain personal and obscure information has been removed, and a few details clarified, but for the most part, each letter was written in a single sitting and left as is.
Consequently, the book itself is not an attempt to answer definitively or solve big issues, or to design a philosophy, as much as to look creatively at some daunting questions that have traditionally been handled in unconvincing ways. My experience has been that how such things are usually addressed is as much of a problem as the issues themselves; the ability to look creatively at something diminishes in pretty much exact proportion to what it lacks in entertainment value. My hope, then, in gathering these letters into a single document is to provide some original and imaginative insight into themes that often lack these qualities. I hope the reading is like the writing, wherein it was simply the more compelling thing to do at the time.
Admittedly, witnessing only part of an apparently random dialogue, without a lot of detailed history or explanation is a challenge. Compared to a novel or collection of essays written for the general public, I suppose it requires more imagination on the part of the reader to assemble the pieces. I’ve tried to assist with that by including letters that navigate as much ground as possible.
My gratitude to those who gave birth to the ideas chronicled here. The flux and flow of our forum was set in motion by your imaginative and sincere exploration. Finally, thank you to the friends and colleagues who generously persevered through the long process of making this book a reality.”
Re:, Darrell Calkins, CobaltSaffron Press, 2004, 312 pages, ISBN 0-9748490-0-6, $15 / 13 €
Discover this letter from Re: Well-Being
A film adaptation of the chapter ‘Forgetting Me’ from Re:, by Darrell Calkins. Conceived and initiated by Aurora Lopez Cancino, and directed by Nick Burns:
“…more than any body of spiritual or philosophic exposition throughout history grounded in what is so, a functional study of subjective experience within an objective reality, so humble and elementary in its sublime esoterica of wisdom and insight it would not be hubris to have called this volatile mass not Re: but along the lines of Lucretius’ The Way Things Are perhaps How to Live, the definitive embodied elocution of a relentless moment of careening evolutionary prerogative characterized by a profound play with humor and grace…each enlivened thought coming unbidden in response to a capitulation in utter faith to an absolute necessity whose cumulative effect is that of magic, alchemy, delight…”
“My words will not do justice to such a powerful book. I am fascinated and riveted each time I open it, find myself lost within its insight for minutes and even hours when I only plan to dip into a few pages, which is very rare for me to find with any book. I have often found expansively revelatory passages that uncannily, wonderfully resonate to that present moment in my life simply by flipping to a random page. Calkins’ insights into psychology, spirituality, the utterly complex working art of being human are no less than genius, a deep pleasure to read, often uplifting in keen humor, and profoundly refreshing.”
— Julia Richardson
“Having been searching for personal fulfillment and the ‘Meaning of Life’ for over 20 years, I am glad I have finally found a description of ‘how it works’. Not the answer to why we are here, but a tour through the laws that govern the course of our life and how we can affect things that matter for us. A lot of material is very amusing, like a good American comedy. I laughed a lot. Other bits had me crying with recognition or astonishment. Like nature itself, the succinct brilliance was often humbling. This book is the best philosophy I’ve ever read; it is the finishing school.”
“This book has touched me more than any other I’ve read. As anything REALLY worth while, it is out of the box, at times too abstract for a first time round read, and was uncannily relevant to my life. It has inspired me in a sustainable way, to approach life in a wiser, and more generous way. It is a book that touches on all essential aspects of a human being’s life and his existential struggles. It is here to assist, to lend a hand in what can result in an access to a form of a realistic redemption in the most down to earth way.”
— Herzl Tobey