This collection of poetic and mystical writings by Barry Long reveals
source of his inspiration as a spiritual master. As for any true mystic,
source is total devotion to the divine. Everything in the book arises
this passion and is the outpouring of a true mystic voice. Each poem is
an expression of the same inspiration, whether he writes out of love for
woman or the passion that brings the mystic to a personal encounter with
the impersonal, the absolute, or God.
The book is also the story of an ordinary man transfixed by extraordinary
moments of truth. The course of Barry Long's spiritual awakening was
punctuated by the impulse to express in song and verse what was happening.
His original writings are in this book in chronological order, accompanied
the author's more recent biographical commentary. Early on, his inner
spoke through the ordinary form of popular songs; later as a kind of rhetorical
monologue in verse. The words capture the power and immediacy of real
You don't need to know anything about Barry Long's spiritual teaching
to be captivated by the penetrating honesty, drama and vitality of these
They are full of yearning, love, crisis, torment and vision. They reach
to the frontiers of death and insanity, where only the mystic stays sane.
poems are not artistic flights of fancy, prettifying experience. Some
bear the raw mark of the dark night of the soul. But others are sweet,
light-hearted, even humorous. Barry Long's spiritual life is not lived
this world. His poems are engrained with commonplace details, humanity,
the business of living, and they are accessible.
The book is a rare and unique document, especially because the voice that
speaks in the poems is so undeniably genuine. It is the spirit, speaking
The author and the origins of the book
Barry Long was born in 1926 in Australia and lives in northern New South
He has been speaking as a spiritual teacher to audiences around the world
for over 20 years and his work has been published in ten languages.
When his spiritual awakening began in the early 1960s he often found himself
spontaneously composing songs and verses. This helped him externalise
inner process. At a critical moment, in 1965 while he was in India, the
of a prophetic song came to him. Suddenly he knew that he would 'have
to go where the four winds blow/ Where the spirit speaks to its own/ For
now I am free/ Like the wind I must be/ And help the others home.' From
then on he became
more and more devoted to that task.
Later in the 1960s he found that the most natural way for him to express
his deepening realisation was through a kind of poetic interior dialogue,
writing on scraps of paper in the busy composing room of the London
newspaper where he worked as a sub-editor. Eventually he was able to give
his whole life over to teaching, and continued to write poems occasionally
as a personal means of expression.
Until now these writings have only circulated privately or been read to
who follow his teaching. Barry Long is therefore not generally known as
a mystic; rather for his plain-spoken, practical application of self-knowledge
to all aspects
of daily life - parenting, work, self-discovery and above all relationships
and love-life. But the power with which he speaks on all these subjects
comes from a profound point of consciousness and love of the divine. The
'cosmic' extent of
this is seen is his master-work 'The Origins of Man and the Universe'.
book 'Where The Spirit Speaks To Its Own' reveals the intimate mystical
dimension of his inspiration.