Author Tags: Advice, Fiction
Colin Mallard has trained in philosophy, literature and psychology. While attending Boston University in the Sixties he was involved in the anti-war movements and was one of five theological students to grant sanctuary in Marsh Chapel to a young soldier whose unit was ordered to Vietnam. He also helped resistors and deserters escape into Canada.
In 1969 he was minister of a Unitarian Universalist Church in Providence, Rhode Island, located in a black ghetto, where he opened an alternative school and drop-in centre. In 1971 the church was firebombed and destroyed.
Upon moving to Hawaii, he taught Tai Chi and meditation and worked as a psychotherapist with families of abused children. He has also been a street counselor on Vancouver’s skid row, a tree planter, mountain guide, restorer of classic cars, crewman on a fish packer, a banquet waiter and a taxi driver.
In 2006 he retired to devote full time to writing and photography. Besides studying Lao Tzu, he has studied the basic teaching known in India as Advaita Vedanta, in Japan as Zen and in the West as the Perennial Philosophy. He has studied with the French Advaita Master Dr. Jean Klein and the Indian Advaita Master Ramesh S. Balsekar.
In 2009, USA Book News in Los Angeles chose his book Something to Ponder: Reflections from Lao Tzu’s Tao Te Ching, as the winner in the “Eastern Religions” category. His novel Uncommon Reason was also a finalist in the category of “Visionary Fiction.”
About “Something To Ponder.”
Something to Ponder re-introduces the timeless wisdom of the ancient Chinese sage Lao Tzu. Lao Tzu states, “When taxes are high, people go hungry. When government interferes, people lose their autonomy. When rulers demand too much, people are not afraid to die. Not being afraid to die they cannot be controlled.” He asks, “Why do people care so little about death?” and responds, “When life becomes intolerable death is welcomed and he who has embraced his death lives without fear. A man like this makes a formidable enemy.”
Uncommon Reason is part political thriller, part book of wisdom, part manual on life. Jt moves from Israel, to Lebanon, the US, Canada and Gaza. It addresses the increasing disparity between rich and poor, the rise of terror, of religious fundamentalism, intolerance and injustice. It points out that the potential for violence is present in all of us. It’s the story of a philosophy professor, a sage, someone of the stature of Lao Tzu or the Buddha, who finds himself President of the United States. Mallard starting writing the novel on the eve of the Gulf War.
An event that took place in the Sixties showed Mallard that all men, even peace makers, are capable of violence and to not fully understand oneself can be dangerous. The event is described under the heading, Moment of Truth, in a Chicken Soup for the Soul book called, Life Lessons for Loving the way you live.
Like a Large Immovable Rock: A Festschrift in Appreciation of Ramesh S. Balsekar (1996 Wild Duck Publishing)
Understanding: The Simplicity of Life (2010 Promontory Press)
Stillpoint: A Novel of War, Peace, Politics and Palestine (2012 Promontory Press)
His books are published via his own imprint Advaita Gems Publishing on Vancouver Island.