Incarnational Spirituality
A contemporary response to our Time

These times call for a contemporary spirituality that honors the sacredness of incarnation.  This sacredness manifests in the unique life of each individual, in the co-creative life of a group, and in the sanctity of the earth itself.  It means honoring the physical world and its qualities as fully as the spiritual and transcendental realms.  Incarnational Spirituality expresses the integrative synthesis of the transpersonal and the personal, the universal and the local, the individual and the group, and the sacred and the ordinary.

Incarnation is about creating a living chalice of consciousness, relationship, spirit, and action. It is about the holding of spirit in the midst of matter; it is about holding matter in the presence of spirit. It is about holding oneself in a loving wholeness and others likewise. It is about holding the earth in honor and respect, in partnership and collaboration. Incarnational spirituality offers a set of ideas, principles and techniques to assist in these acts of Holding.

Whatever other causes there may be or appear to be, our failure to hold in these ways, our failure to be incarnated in a holistic manner, is a contributing factor in the problems and challenges our world faces. 

Rectifying this failure is the spiritual challenge of the contemporary world and it calls for individuals who can:

  • Discover the sacredness within their own lives
  • Stand as an agent of blessing and transformation in the world
  • Practice the art of co-creativity
  • Offer individual gifts into spiritual service, enhancing self, other and the world
  • Pioneer an emergent, loving, holistic spirituality

The goal of Incarnational Spirituality and its educational platform, is to support and empower such individuals.


Incarnation card
"Incarnation" from the Manifestation Card Deck

Overview of Lorian Education

Incarnational Spirituality is a vast area of learning, practice and application.   The programs that explore it and offer instruction and insights fall into two categories:  Core classes and programs and Application classes.

Core programs are those offered by the Lorian Center for Incarnational Spirituality and include the Path of the Chalice, and the Lorian Ordination Program. These programs focus on the foundational elements of Incarnational Spirituality.

Application classes are those offered by the teachers and faculty of the Lorian Association that apply the principles of Incarnational Spirituality, often within specific professions. The theme and focus of an Application class may not be Incarnational Spirituality itself, but these programs all draw on the foundational elements and principles taught in the Core programs, elaborating and developing them in particular ways according to the intent of the teacher. Such programs may be single events, such as a workshop or lecture, or they may be ongoing trainings within a specific discipline or application. It is in these Application classes that Incarnational Spirituality configures itself to the diversity of the world. An individual may discover Incarnational Spirituality through one of these Application classes and then be inspired to delve more deeply by taking one or more of the Core programs.

You'll find current offerings or Core and Application classes listed in the Lorian Association Newsletter and in the Calendar.

Discovering Incarnational Spirituality

There are three ways of discovering and learning about Incarnational Spirituality and what it has to offer to you.

General Reading:  The Lorian Bookstore, found on the Lorian Association website, has many books, card decks, and self-study modules on Incarnational Spirituality and related topics.  The simplest way to discover Incarnational Spirituality is to browse the material that is available and read what attracts you.

Individual Classes and Workshops:  The second way is to take a class or workshop offered by one or more of the Lorian faculty.  These classes are most often presented online but face-to-face workshops in various locations are offered from time to time as well.  As described, they may be “Core programs” or “Application classes.”   Check the Calendar to find a schedule of upcoming classes, workshops and other events such as special conferences or seminars.

Facilitated Self-Study: The third way is to study using Lorian's self-study programs. This is a set of flexible learning modules which may be studied individually or together as a coordinated program of individual development, integration and practice.  This set of classes can be done entirely at an individual’s own pace.  They can be done entirely at an individual’s own pace.  A facilitator is available if desired to assist in the integration and understanding of the material and its specific application within the individual’s own unique life and circumstances.

No matter what level you choose to engage with Incarnational Spirituality, the objective of all our programs is not to promote another philosophy in the world but to give you a toolbox that you can use to build a strong, whole, integrated, and spiritually attuned incarnation, one that blesses you and blesses the world we all share.

In addition to these core programs, from time to time we offer stand-alone classes and workshops.  Information on these special events is given on the website Home and Calendar pages, and announced in our Lorian Association Newsletter.


Vision from the Sidhe Card Deck
"Vision" from the Sidhe Card Deck

"I'm thinking of these classes as having provided some extraordinary perspectives and tools, and I feel very privileged to have been exposed to these generous and beautiful offerings. I know something about inner allies and about the feel and relationship between my ordinarily experienced embodiment and the energetic presence and will that seems to have launched it and continues to nourish it. I also know something about seeing and feeling oneself as generously and lovingly radiant, and being able to be so because one is so."
 R.G., Bellingham, WA

Introductory Materials - Getting Started

For an introduction to Incarnational Spirituality, we recommend the following.


Read one or more of the following books.

With the exception of Apprenticed to Spirit, these books are available from the Lorian bookstore.  Apprenticed is available from or other fine bookstores.  All are available in e-pub format for reading on Kindle, Nook, or Ipad.



Incarnational Spirit from the Incarnational Deck
"Incarnational Spirit" from the Incarnation Card Deck

The Path of the Chalice

Check the Calendar to find the next scheduled date for this core program.

The Path of the Chalice is a five-month online program that takes the basic principles and concepts of Incarnational Spirituality and weaves them into a path of practice and application in daily life.  It offers extended, in-depth work with David Spangler and other Lorian faculty exploring and grounding the incarnational process in ways designed to unfold the sacredness within ourselves and connect it with the sacredness in the world around us.

Using the image of the chalice, this program is divided into three six-week parts separated by a week of reflection and assimilation.  These parts metaphorically represent the Stem and the Bowl of the Chalice and the Flame that the assembled chalice then contains.  Each of these three parts draws on particular principles and aspects of Incarnational Spirituality to explore a path of practice. The Stem is our Individuality and Sovereignty, the Bowl is our Connectedness and Engagement with the physical and non-physical worlds, and the Flame is the Light of our innate incarnational sacredness as it engages the sacredness in the world around us

As in many classes and programs taught by David, part of the content emerges from the interactions and discussions of the participants and thus cannot be predicted.  Each class thus has its own unique flavor and expression depending on those who help co-create it, which can include interested colleagues from the subtle worlds.

This program assumes some prior knowledge of the core principles and ideas of Incarnational Spirituality.  The class Journey into Fire is strongly suggested as preparation.  For additional information and preparation, we recommend any of the following books, An Introduction to Incarnational Spirituality, Apprenticed to Spirit, and Partnering with Earth, as well as other Lorian courses such as The New Dawn: Explorations into Incarnational Spirituality and Embracing Earth.  You can find information about these books and courses on the Lorian website at

The Path of the Chalice is required for entry into the Lorian Ordination Program.

Registration: $995.00


Holding Card from the Manifestation Card Deck
"Holding" from the Manifestation Card Deck

When I was first heard that the Path of the Chalice program was designed to be life changing, I questioned the statement. But I found it to be true. I found my heart opening in a new way on a daily basis. My attunement to the life in world around me substantially increased. And my work with my inner world spiritual helpers has become much more of a daily practice that I take into my professional life. I would recommend Path of the Chalice to most anyone.
Ron Hays, OR


This program under re-development


David Spangler photo
David Spangler

Sacred card from Manfestation Deck
"Sacred" from the Manifestation Card Deck

Survey Courses

As the name implies Survey Courses are short overviews of a particular subject important to Incarnational Spirituality. They provide a way to gain a quick understanding of the concepts involved. You get them online.

Most courses (not all, see details listed) include:

  • one or more audio recordings by David Spangler - about an hour long, and
  • An E-Document (PDF file) of 8-10 pages on the subject

NOTE: When you complete the payment process, click the link to return to Lorian Association to immediately see your Survey Course. In addition, within a day or two, you will receive the link to the module via email to give you access to the same page containing full navigation to these resources. Alternately you can email us at to register.

Survey Course Description
The Incarnational Way - Survey Course
To access the survey course, click here.
This FREE survey course contains a 16-page e-document entitled, Incarnational Spirituality, A Short Introduction by David Spangler, two audio recordings entitled Incarnational Way, 1A and 1B, and 2 charts illustrating some of the concepts introduced. To access the survey course, click here.
Subtle Activism Kit - Survey Course

To access the survey course at no cost,click here.
This FREE survey course contains a 16-page e-document entitled, Subtle Activismby David Spangler, three audio recordings entitled Subtle Activism Commentary, Blessing Exercise, and World Work Oil Spill.
Subtle Awareness - Survey Course

Cost is $15
We live our lives in the midst of an invisible world of energies and presence. We are not totally unaware of it; it impinges on us in many subtle ways. But for the most part it goes unnoticed and unremarked. Yet within it are resources of creativity, insight, healing, and partnership with life around us.

With this survey course you will receive:

  • An e-document entitled The Four Faces of Home by David Spangler
  • Two audio recordings entitled Subtle Perception, 2A and 2B
  • Six charts illustrating some of the concepts introduced in the material
Subtle Energy Health and Safety - Survey Course

Cost is $15
This survey course consists of an e-document by David Spangler entitled, Subtle Hygiene and one audio recording entitled, Energy Hygiene Introduction also by David Spangler.
Partering with Unseen Allies - Survey Course

Cost is $15
This survey course consists of two audio recordings entitled, Partering with Allies by David Spangler, and six charts illustrating the concepts introduced in the audio recordings.
Subtle Activism - Survey Course

Cost is $15

With this survey course you will receive:

  • An e-document entitled Energy Activism by David Spangler
  • Two audio recordings entitled Subtle Activism, 5A and 5B
  • Four charts illustrating some of the concepts introduced in the material
Manifestation - Survey Course

Cost is $15
When you purchase this survey course, you will get two audio recordings, entitled Manifestation, A and B. These recordings are from an introductory talk given by David Spangler to an IONS gathering in Sacramento, CA in December 2007. Books and Card Deck can be purchased through the Bookstore.


David Spangler photo
David Spangler


The following faculty members are those who may be available to act as facilitators in Incarnational Spirituality, as well as offering a variety of classes and workshops in their own specialties and fields of work.  All are ordained in Lorian.

David Spangler, MCS is Director of the Lorian Center for Incarnational Spirituality. He is a mystic, writer and educator in the integration of spiritual values, energy and presence into everyday life. He was co-director of the Findhorn Community and has taught extensively for over 40 years.  Since 1965, David has worked clairvoyantly with a group of spiritual beings. They identified themselves as part of an inner school whose purpose was to explore and develop a spiritual teaching around the process of incarnation. This teaching is intended to empower incarnate persons living in the physical world to lead lives of greater blessing and capacity and to be sources of blessing and service for the world as a whole. 

Freya Secrest, MSD is the Managing Director of the Lorian Association. She is a Spiritual Director, adult educator and Lorian priest. She lived at the Findhorn community in Scotland for three years, subsequently teaching with Dorothy Maclean on themes of cooperation with Nature in the United States and Canada. She helped to cofound the Lorian Association in 1974.  She lives in Everett, Washington where she loves spending time learning from her garden.

Dan Paulson, MA, has worked with the tenants of Incarnational Spirituality for over twenty years, applying them to his work as a counselor, educator and community developer. He is a Lorian minister and has been involved in spiritual education, as well as green living education throughout his life, as well as serving as dean of a college and on the board of directors of several nonprofit organizations. Dan lives in Traverse City, Michigan.

Jeremy Berg, MCS lives in Everett, WA and is owner of the Lorian Press and Starseed Publications. He is the author of The Gathering Light, artist for The Card Deck of the Sidhe, a Lorian priest and a workshop presenter. He holds an architectural patent for earth sheltered structural systems featured on the cover of Popular Science magazine, has taught at both the secondary and post-secondary level and has been a college dean and vice president. He is part of the Lorian education development team.

Julie Spangler is a founding member of Lorian and has applied the principles of IS within her work as a Certified Counselor, parenting coach and Personology practitioner for many years. She began her spiritual work at the Findhorn Community developing the guest program and singing with The New Troubadours. She is ordained as a Lorian minister and currently lives in Issaquah, Washington with her husband, David, and a variable number of their four children.

Rue Hass, MA, is an ordained minister/priest of Incarnational Spirituality.  A former university teacher, she has been in private practice for 25 years as a Spiritual Life Path Coach and Intuitive Mentor, using transformational energy methods such as EFT (“tapping”). From 1974-1981, she was a staff member of the Findhorn Foundation, an international center for spiritual and holistic education in Scotland. Rue lives in Boulder, Colorado.

Tim Hass, MS lives in Boulder Colorado. He has been a therapist involved in intensive mental health work over the past 30 years. He has also facilitated training and helped setup Mental Health Programs around the US as a private consultant recognized by NAMI. He lived for four years at the Findhorn Community in Scotland where he served on the Core Group and Director of Personnel, has studied many spiritual and shamanic paths, and is ordained as a Lorian minister/priest.


The Barrow from the card deck of the Sidhe

"The Barrow" from the Card Deck of the Sidhe

Online Class Frequenty Asked Questions (FAQs)

Students unfamiliar with online classes often have questions. Here are some of the most frequently-asked questions we've encountered about our online offerings. If you don't find an answer here to your own question, you can contact us directly by email or telephone call. You'll find the specifics at the bottom of this page.

  • How do your online classes work?
    Lorian online classes are conducted on the internet through a private classroom site called Catalyst. You can access Catalyst from the website at any time by clicking Sign-In in the upper-right corner. You’ll be asked for an ID and password. Once you’re in, you simply communicate with the instructor and other students by typing in comments.
            Classes usually include downloadable books or other written essays and experiential exercises presented by the faculty.  You can work with this material at your own pace over the week.  Responses to class material and others‘ comments are typed within designated topic areas.  All information posted will be available for the duration of the class session.  Also, you’ll be able to download and print the class material on your home printer.

  • Will I get to know the other participants?
    Yes, there is usually an active dialogue that gets established between participants in spite of time and distance and there is quite a friendly feel to the exchange.  We strive to support a learning community atmosphere which includes humor and humanness – there can be an unexpected sense of connection, even when some participants live across the globe.  As Dan Paulson, one of the faculty shares: “One thing I love about using this online format is that the level of discussion can be much deeper than in a face-to-face class. In general, people have time to think through what they want to say and frame it in a way that stimulates thought and further discussion.  By the end of the session we have created a strong and active learning community.”

  • What about confidentiality?

    You, as is the case with everyone—even the instructors, are asked to sign a Covenant of Confidentiality to support the privacy of each class session.  We ask that no material is shared outside of the class group without the writer’s permission.  This contributes to a safe sharing space that allows all to trust that their thoughts and experiences will be respectfully held.

  • Why take a class or forum instead of just studying independently?
    The class format doesn’t have to be an either/or situation. Ideally you would find the time to take advantage of both learning experiences.  But that said, we do feel the interactive classes and forums add important benefits. The discussion in the classes expands one’s individual understanding as everybody shares questions, experience, perceptions and interpretations. And the encouragement, feedback and sense of community that inevitably grows out of the online conversation widens one’s confidence in working with incarnational ideas in one’s daily life.

  • What are the expectations of me as a participant in the class?
    Since the material is available 24/7, you will be able to fit reading and reflection time into your personal schedule. We simply encourage you to participate with interest, discernment and openness to the degree that your comfort level and time allows. We do expect that you keep anything that is shared in the class confidential to provide a safe place for people to share and explore.

  • How does work with Incarnational Spirituality play out in life?
    As a worldview Incarnational Spirituality reflects in our identity and our actions.  We see that it helps people to better honor the essential sacredness within themselves and to bring their unique light more fully into expression in ways that are co-creative and collaborative with the sacred in the world around them.
    There are times in the past when my life has felt cramped – l’ve felt locked in by circumstances. Through my work with incarnational principles that has been gradually replaced by a feeling of being connected in life. That feeling of connection leads me into a free and collaborative exchange with my world that is truly creative.”

  • How can I engage Incarnational Spirituality?
    A good place to start is our library where we have downloadable essays by David Spangler and others available.  In addition there is the Lorian blog with posts from many folks sharing their experiences using its principles in their lives.
    You can sign up for our mailing list, which includes Lorian’s free e-newsletter and David Spangler’s monthly essay, “David’s Desk.”
           There are free or inexpensive Survey Courses to learn some introductory concepts of the deeper trainings offered.

  • What do the Self-Study Modules include?
    Once purchased you have access to the self study material for three full months.  Each module includes extensive study materials in the form of PDF books and/or audio files of lectures or past workshops on the subject.  Audio recordings of guided incarnational meditations are also included.  Each module has a slightly different configuration of materials but each is a full-bodied learning experience.
             For those who have studied one or more of the modules there is the opportunity to go more deeply with an Integrative Forum with David Spangler where you can ask questions  and dialogue to deepen your learning experience with the material.

  • I have heard you do esoteric research.  How do I learn more about it?
    Lorian sees that the a 21st century spirituality needs to be responsive to emerging 21st century relationships and conditions.  Our View from the Borderlands program offers quarterly research journals that present essays and materials documenting cutting edge explorations into applications of incarnational practice. Exercises included in the journals offer an additional opportunity to participate in, and benefit from, cutting edge thinking in Incarnational themes. Subscribers are also offered an opportunity to participate in two online forums for discussion and sharing of the material. The View from the Borderlands is offered as an annual subscription format and includes four quarterly journals and two webinars over a one-year period.

  • Do you offer programs outside of the Seattle area?
    Yes, we are invited to areas around the United States andCanada, and we collaborate with the Findhorn Foundation in Scotland to offer programs in Britain as well.  Please check our calendar for any events which may be happening closer to you. 
            When there is sufficient interest in Incarnational Spirituality we encourage individuals, such as yourself, to sponsor a Lorian workshop or study group in your area. Call our office to learn more about how to coordinate something in your area.

Contact us for further information:  email, call (425) 374-7069, or write:

The Lorian Association
P.O. Box 1368
Issaquah, WA 98027

Image Holder

"Lorian's programs in Incarnational Spirituality are like a breath of fresh
air. I have learned to engage my whole self-heart, mind, body, soul and
personality-in creative partnership with the world as it is. I find an
intimate space of generativity opening within me that supports my
relationships and passion for my work in integral ecology. Thank you David
and the loving Lorian faculty!"
AA, Program Associate, Integral Education, WA

Lorian Education Catalog Cover

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