About “Sacred Civilizations”

Ladakh 35

Our transformation from a dysfunctional, unsustainable and spiritually empty society means (re)discovering the roots of sacred civilization.

  • We need a new civilization.  By now, there should be no question about that.
  • As our dysfunction is profound, our transformation must be radical enough to truly address the conditions we live in.
  • Civilizations are not born in anger and frustration.  That which comes from anger, frustration and conflict causes more problems than it solves.
  • Civilizations are not born in discourse and rationality.  There is a huge difference between talk that leads to empowered action, and “just talk”.
  • Civilizations are not born by stopping what’s bad, or even by encouraging what’s good.  Civilizations are born from a Transcendent vision.
  • “Sacred” does not mean “religious”.  A sacred civilization is beyond “religion”.  A sacred civilization will not come from any religious group or organization.
  • A sacred civilization has 3 key values:
    • Honoring and respect for the Earth;
    • Honoring all LIFE;
    • Honoring and respect for Spirit.

This Summer, I am walking the path of sacred civilization, to the ancient Kingdom of Ladakh, in what is now Northern India, Northern Pakistan and Southern China.  I will also be questing for sacred civilization among the Egyptians, the Balinese, the Maori — and perhaps more.

This section of my website will contain updates and information on that journey, as well as an online, interactive journal for those who have been supporters of this journey.




5 Responses to About “Sacred Civilizations”

  1. Ellen Michals says:

    “Sometimes, reaching out and taking someone’s hand is the beginning of a journey.

    At other times, it is allowing another to take yours.”
    ― Vera Nazerian

    Thank you Sharif for “reaching out” to others for assistance on this amazing journey.
    We will all share in this journey as the reports and wisdom comes back to us.

    You reached out to the hands of friends, and we reach back to your hand.
    Best wishes for safety and productivity…Don’t forget to rest and become re-energized. We all will look forward to your return.
    Ellen Michals

  2. Greg Earl says:

    Jared R,

    Now that your comment is public, what is your next expectation? I would love an answer to this question, but I hope you read this entire message before thinking about your answer.

    I hope you read “A Story Waiting to Pierce You.” My choice from Sharif’s books would be, “Seven Seeds for a New Society,” but perhaps you should follow Sharif’s advice and choose, “Creating a World That Works for All.” I echo his advice because I choose to believe that your comment is an attempt to save someone from something “bad.”

    I would like you to ponder this question: Do you believe that visiting Ladakh, a place recently the subject of an “incursion” by the Chinese military is a “vacation spot?” Really? Please learn something about Ladakh, in order to help you understand why we would happily pay to help Sharif make the trip.

    Of course your comment would appear. Creating a world that works for all beings includes beings like yourself–someone who could casually post about “racism” and “The Noble Savage” implicating someone you obviously don’t know. The world works a little less well every time someone makes such a charge, irrespective of its truth. It is the act of propagating the negative energy that hurts us all, not whether an objective observer would agree with the statement. Do you understand what I’m saying and why I’m saying it?

    There may be people whose motives and intentions should be questioned, but for every person whose purpose is to hurt another being, there are legions who are simply doing the best they can given their circumstances. Statistically, it is likely that your insulting diatribe has a different purpose than to harm one of the millions of people whose intention is to heal the whole planetary Mess. My response has the intention of suggesting that your attempt to help be rethought.

    What is your true purpose, Jared? Not just this post. Why are you here on Earth in this time and place?

    I currently study with Sharif, and he mentioned in class that he had been “skewered” in a comment. I’m glad he mentioned this, because I can speak to your comment in a way that Sharif need not. To direct the sort of suspicion you have directed at Sharif is equally inappropriate to direct at those that society judges the other way–Trayvon Martin and George Zimmerman are equally inappropriate targets of negative judgment. So are George Bush and Barack Obama.

    Given the profound dysfunction of our society, one of the most powerful acts any one of us can perform is to receive a blast of negative energy–hate, anger, or ridicule, and return and pay forward, love, compassion, and empathy.

    This would be a good place to share your ideas for healing our dysfunctional civilization.


  3. Jared R says:

    I don’t expect this comment to make it onto your website as you do control the access and why would you want a negative comment about your concepts to appear for others to read. Your journey sounds like a nice summer vacation paid for by others. I find your concept of the sacred and a new civilization to be built upon the racist concept of the “noble savage.” Instead of spending the money of others for your vacation go back to the drawing board and come up with something original.

    • Sharif says:

      Jared, if I wanted a “nice summer vacation”, I wouldn’t have to leave Oregon. I don’t do “vacations” and I certainly wouldn’t ask my friends and supporters to finance one.

      I’m sorry that you formed your conclusions based on one summary page.

      As for your “noble savage” comment: I strongly urge you to read Peter Kingsley’s book, “A Story Waiting to Pierce You”, which will let you know why I’m heading to Central Asia to search for a way out of our present Mess.

      And, I also strongly urge you to read “Creating a World That Works for All” (or any of my other books). My drawing board is chock-full of of originality.



    • John Brown says:

      Good to see your courage in expressing yourself even as there is concern of being less than enthusiastically received.

      That is something you and Sharif clearly share. He certainly recognizes this journey might be received with negative judgments way stronger than your expression here. I had the opportunity to witness many of the powerful internal ruminations around following this “call” and can say quite confidently that it was a process that one does not engage in when contemplating a vacation.

      I contributed money and time in support of this adventure specifically because we, as a culture, need to go back to the drawing board as you suggest. This is exactly what I understand this journey to be, an effort to step as far outside the box as possible and see what shows up on that drawing board. Then bring it back for the rest of us to work with. And in that sense, perhaps it is vacating; vacating what is familiar and comfortable as he surrenders to a dream that had every cell of his being questioning the reasonableness of what began to unfold. And yet the desire for something that might, just might contribute to a world that works for all pushed and pulled him deeper into the vision.

      He is not traveling with my money, I eagerly gave that to him. It is his, though it was not easy for him to receive. He is, however, traveling with my dream.

      Jared, at sometime you may have such a compelling dream well up within you too. I hope you will. And if you do, it would be useful to give attention to it with this journey/quest and its dreamer as a resource.

      Blessings on your journey.

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