About the author


Although I no longer participate in any Quaker organizations, I continue to be inspired by the spiritual and psychological insights of the first Friends. I first worshiped with Quakers in 1975 at Little Falls Meeting, which had been founded by my ancestor William Amos in 1738, in Fallston, MD, USA. From 1985 until late 2021, I was an active member of Homewood Meeting in Baltimore, where I served as presiding clerk and in other capacities. Some years ago, I introduced Experiment with Light to both those meetings; a Light Group continues to meet regularly at Homewood. For a number of years, I served the Quaker Universalist Fellowship as editor and Steering Committee member. Over half a century ago, I was a founding member of the Baltimore Zen Group, and I have continued zazen practice and study of Buddhist thought through the years. As a young man, I was a candidate for the Catholic priesthood in Carmelite and Franciscan seminaries. For more on my religious background, see The Church, the Draft Board, and Me.

I hold a B.A. in Liberal Arts (Religious Studies major, English and Music minors; summa cum laude) from Notre Dame of Maryland University, a Master of Social Work from the University of Maryland, and a certificate in adult psychotherapy from the Baltimore Psychotherapy Institute. (My thinking about psychotherapy is influenced by Lacanian analysis, which I take not as a system or Theory but as what Buddhists might call upaya-kaushalya.) I have also been privileged to participate in over a dozen courses at the Ecumenical Institute of Theology of St. Mary’s Seminary & University.

Essays published in the journal Quaker Theology include “The Making of a Quaker Atheist” (1999), “The Psychology of Salvation: Recovering, Reframing, and Reclaiming the Early Quaker Experience” (2008), “The Darkness of Mother Teresa” (2011), and a review of the book Following Jesus (2014); in addition, the journal published excerpts of The Church, the Draft Board, and Me in 2020. I maintain the Quaker Electronic Archive, where, in addition to a variety of other resources, some of my earlier writings are available.


Writing in 1988.