About Lex Hixon

“Lex Hixon was a pioneer in the spiritual renaissance in America over the last four decades.” —Allen Ginsberg, poet

Lex Hixon (1941–1995) was truly an ambassador for the brighter possibilities of humanity’s future. An author of seven books, a practitioner/leader of five different religions, an accredited scholar (Ph.D. Columbia), and a contagiously passionate mystic, he left a priceless legacy for all who aspire to global community.

Originally a disciple of Swami Nikhilananda of the Ramakrishna Order, Lex came to life in five “parallel sacred worlds.” He was a member of the Eastern Orthodox church, became a teacher in a traditional Sufi lineage, and co-founded the Nur Ashki Jerrahi Sufi Order in the United States. For many years he hosted the radio program “In the Spirit” WBAI, on which he interviewed many religious teachers (including Mother Teresa of Calcutta and the Dalai Lama of Tibet) and was responsible for introducing their practices to many Americans. He was the founder of Free Spirit magazine. Shortly before his death, he was in the process of being ordained as a successor in the initiatory lineage of Dogen’s Soto Zen.

After Lex received his Ph.D. in World Religions from Columbia University in 1976 at age thirty-five, his first book was published by Doubleday in 1978, Coming Home: The Experience of Enlightenment in Sacred Traditions. This book, with its experiential bent and spirit of universality, has been widely recognized as a classic and is used regularly in college courses.

For more than thirty years, Lex traveled the globe making first-hand explorations of various initiatory lineages, always maintaining the clear and balanced overview he expressed in Coming Home. He began his traveling early, at age nineteen, when he lived and studied in South Dakota with Vine Deloria, Senior, a Lakota Sioux elder and Episcopal priest.

Beginning in 1980, Lex made a profound fifteen-year study of Islam and Sufism, which he reported in two of his books, Heart of the Koran and Atom from the Sun of Knowledge. His first-hand experience of Buddhism appears in Mother of the Buddhas: Meditation on the Prajnaparamita Sutra and Living Buddha Zen. His thirty-year involvement with the Divine Mother tradition of Bengal is documented in Great Swan: Meetings with Ramakrishna and Mother of the Universe: Visions of the Goddess and Tantric Hymns of Enlightenment. His final book was Living Buddha Zen, which he happily lived in good health long enough to hone to his full satisfaction.

Lex’s experience of being “orthodox in five different spiritual traditions” produced a unique philosophy, a “theory of relativity for religions.” His warm, joyful manner of teaching, celebrating, and encouraging spiritual seekers of all kinds touched thousands of lives.

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