My Story

My story begins in New Providence, NJ, where I grew up a member of the Methodist Church. My Christian roots run deep, but from an early age, I was troubled by the idea that Christianity is the only true religion. By age 12, I was an agnostic and might have stayed one were it not for a reintroduction to spirituality in 1985 through participation in a 12 step group. Then,  in 1987, I had a spontaneous and powerful “peak experience” of oneness with everything while attending a talk by Br David Steindl-Rast, a Benedictine monk. In that moment of illumination, my story took an unexpected turn. I lost interest in my graduate studies and became a spiritual seeker. I began formal study of the Christian contemplative tradition and took up contemplative prayer. My interest in world religions grew strong and I read up on the lively interreligious dialogue between Buddhist and Christian monastics. This led me to become curious about zen and  Zen Buddhism, which seemed the antithesis of theist Christianity. Encouraged by early experiences with Zen meditation, I decided to take up formal study of Zen, initially as a new Christian prayer form. My experiences of God and community life were so positive that I undertook three years of residential training at Zen Buddhist Temples in Ann Arbor, Michigan, and Chicago. I left that community in 1993, but elements of that time of practice and community living continue to inform and enrich me. During those years I was introduced to Ken Wilbers integral approach and I have worked to create an integral approach to spirituality that draws on Zen Buddhist, Christian Contemplative, and modern psychologically-based spiritual approaches.

For many years, it has been my intention to teach what I have learned and to share the way with others. I have not sought awakening for myself alone, but for our mutual benefit. I believe that each of us has our own path to walk, with its unique challenges and rewards. But at another level, we are all collaborating in the great work of our time, the healing and evolution of human society. What at first looks like “my way” turns out to be part of “our way,” the way forward for humanity as a whole. It is my great privilege and joy to accompany people walking this sacred journey towards healing, wholeness, and awakening. If you feel called to further exploration of spiritual life and feel a resonance with my work, I hope that you will connect with me.

Education

I earned a BS in Biology from Dickinson College in 1983 and a PhD in biological chemistry from the University of Michigan (1990). I studied Spiritual Direction at the Institute for Spiritual Leadership in Chicago and received a Certificate in Spiritual Direction in 2005. I am currently studying to be a teacher in the Trillium Awakening approach to embodied awakening. I live in Chicago, Illinois, two blocks from Lake Michigan, with my wife Claire and our cats, Cleo and Chester.

What others are saying

Bill excels in guiding others on the path to transformation through  experiential  practices which flow from his own  depths.” -Patricia Grott, Evanston, IL

“You have been an impactful force in my own quest for balance in my life.”

“I am eternally grateful for the spark that has been reignited within my own development.”

“Bill brings a sense of peace not only to his experiential workshops, but to everyday life. I always leave his workshops feeling more connected to the peace within myself.”

“I feel more calm and present to my life. I’ve also stopped taking an ADD drug.”

“Bill has a way with words and simply bringing his message into the comfort of our consciousness. What a pleasure to work with you Bill.”   -Terri O’Fallon, Pacific Integral

“Bill’s style of mentorship is deeply intuitive and compassionate. He possesses the ability to meet any individual.”  –DM, Art Therapy Instructor. Chicago