The Abwoon Network website shares the research of its founder and spiritual mentor, Dr. Neil Douglas-Klotz, on Native Middle Eastern spirituality and peace-making, including work on the Aramaic words of Jesus, Hebrew and Native Middle Eastern creation mysticism and Sufism.
The Abwoon Network works toward:
- Realizing and spreading the global consciousness of unity;
- Bridging understanding between the traditions of Abraham, Sarah and Hagar through shared story, meditation and interspiritual ritual;
- Building communities of peace through the celebration of sacred diversity;
- Sharing the vision of purpose, creativity and empowerment that prophet Yeshua calls malkuta, which is known in Hebrew as malkuth and in Arabic as al-Malik.
The website is operated by the Edinburgh Institute for Advanced Learning in Scotland, UK, directed by Neil, with the help of volunteers in the UK and USA and in cooperation with the Abwoon Resource Center based in Columbus, Ohio, USA, directed by the Rev. Elizabeth Reed.
The Abwoon Network began life in Fairfax, California as the “Abwoon Study Circle” in the early 1990s, just after the publication of Neil’s book Prayers of the Cosmos and the appearance of small groups dedicated to contemplate, chant and practice the words of Yeshua in Aramaic, particularly the Aramaic “Lord’s Prayer.”
Subsequent to Neil’s move to Europe in 1995, the work began to extend into many more countries, partnered with his teaching of the Dances of Universal Peace and the inception of the International Network for the Dances.
In the early 2000s, as a joint project of Neil’s Edinburgh Institute for Advanced Learning in Edinburgh, Scotland and the Rev. Elizabeth Reed’s Shalem Center in Columbus, Ohio, USA (also see below), the Abwoon Resource Center (ARC) was born. It provided a “bricks and mortar” office and online store, sending out resources, providing advice to new groups, and stocking all of Neil’s book and recordings of many of his seminars.
Under the guidance of Rev. Reed and Neil, the projects at ARC included over 20 annual workshops with Neil Douglas Klotz on a variety of his publication topics. From 2007-2014 ARC sponsored three USA AILP (Abwoon Interspiritual Leadership Program) groups to train and support USA leaders for their local teaching and facilitation work. Various resources were created and provided through ARC via funding from the Kalliopeia Foundation and other donors to the Abwoon Network.
Other projects included:
New Resource Development: working with Neil Douglas-Klotz to produce more resources to support individuals and groups who are “building communities of peace.” These include audio recordings as well as posting of video through the ARC YouTube channel.
Southern Libraries Resources: continuing to place resources in libraries in southern states made possible through an individual donor. (Also providing free resources to prison ministries, as we are able).
Translation Project: Through the dedicated work of volunteers, basic resources and published books have been and are still being translated into multiple languages. Many of Neil’s books appear in English, German, Dutch, Turkish, Indonesian, Czech, Russian, Portuguese and Spanish. ARC helps supports these individual translators who work directly with publishers to make more resources available.
In 2014, our emphasis shifted from physical resources to digital and human resources. From being a physical resource center, we went digital, with all resources available online at our website or through the links provided to a wider Abwoon Network. Instead of a small staff of paid helpers, many volunteers worldwide now shoulder responsibilities for the various outreach services including communications, recordings, social media, and other services.
In short, we have placed more focus upon those who are teaching and sharing these resources in local and regional settings. We are a decentralised network, with every person sharing the work in their own way.
ARC will continue to serve in support and coordination with volunteers, networking with other like-minded persons and groups, developing and maintaining on-going Constant Contact communications, as well as through Facebook and other social media. Requests for information concerning Abwoon work are often received here and referrals are made to people throughout the USA who might provide local support. ARC fulfils CD orders of some of Neil’s recordings through Amazon (USA only). We no longer carry hard copy books and instead encourage people to buy books online as well as support their local bookstores, or through IndieBound or Bookshop, both of which support local stores.
For specific queries, see the ‘Contact Us’ page.
Edinburgh Institute for Advanced Learning (EIAL):
EIAL (www.eial.org) was a volunteer community organization in Scotland that ran seminars and colloquia in the Edinburgh, Scotland area from 1999 through the beginning of the Covid pandemic in 2020. It offered education and sponsorship for learning opportunities in applied spirituality, that is, the application of spiritual practice and experience to everyday life: peace studies, ecology and psychology.
Along with sponsoring Neil’s academic work, EIAL helped begin the Edinburgh International Centre for Spiritual and Peace, a Scottish charity of which Neil is a co-founder, along with Neill Walker. EIAL also created and maintained the website of the Mysticism Group of the American Academy of Religion (AAR) for ten years.
EIAL continues to maintain and develop Neil’s website.
Neil’s academic work is now widely available through the academia.edu website of the AAR. His other work is now collected under the umbrella of the Abwoon Network and its website.
The purpose of Shalem Center is to promote healing and growth for individuals, groups and organizations; this through realization of spiritual purpose through intentional development of consciousness. Spirituality is understood broadly to include all religions, faiths and paths as expressions of human yearning for realization of divine nature. Interspiritual work is a primary focus at Shalem Center as Divine Unity is recognized in all paths and manifested in the evolution of nature and consciousness. Ultimately spiritual purpose expresses itself in service to the larger communities in which we live. This service is towards the expansion of peace and harmony in one’s existence—in both the inner and outer levels of life and including all spheres of life.
The Rev. Elizabeth A. Reed is the founder and Executive Director of Shalem Center. See www.shalemcenter.org for more information. As part of her work, she travels nationally and internationally teaching Abwoon focused workshops. She has written Abwoon resources to help individuals deepen their spiritual iives in this work. These included two online courses: A Healing Journey with the Aramaic Lord’s Prayer and Breathing with the Divine Breath (no longer available due to the liquidation of the publisher) and the study manual Abwoon Circles: Starting a Local Group (a “how-to” guide to organize and teach or facilitate small local groups based on the resources of Neil Douglas-Klotz).
Elizabeth A. Reed, Ph.D:
Elizabeth A. Reed, Ph.D is an ordained United Methodist minister and follower of a universalist sufi path. A native of Georgia, she relocated to Ohio in 1977 after completing Master of Divinity seminary studies at Emory University. For ten years, she served local congregations and a program position for the West Ohio Conference of the United Methodist Church. During this time she published articles related to youth ministry, educational concerns, and issues of women in ministry. She served on many judicatory boards and credits her eight years with the denomination’s national Commission on the Status and Role of Women as a professional catalyst for an inclusive ministry and for personal support within the institution while deepening her perspectives on issues of justice.
Since completing her Ph.D. in 1991, she has worked as a psychotherapist and spiritual director. Over ten years ago, this work expanded to focus both interfaith and peacemaking concerns, a shift in focus that began when Shalem Center linked with Abwoon Study Circle.
Elizabeth also leads and mentors others in the Dances of Universal Peace. Having published a number of journal articles, many focusing on women’s spirituality, her other projects have included the Abwoon resources mentioned above.