Joan Tollifson writes and talks with people about the nature of reality. She has an affinity with Advaita and Zen, but belongs to no formal tradition. Her first book, Bare-Bones Meditation, was published by Bell Tower in 1996 and has been translated into German and Dutch. Some of the teachers who have touched her most deeply include Toni Packer and Nisargadatta Maharaj. Tollifson has lived in California and New York, and currently resides in Ashland, OR.
"I haven't been this excited about a non-duality book in a long
time. It's really wonderful, and so well written! [Tollifson has] a
remarkable ability to avoid common conceptual confusions, and to
explain why we often fall into them. [Tollifson writes] like
someone who is not just tossing in all the usual recipes, but who
understands and appreciates the active ingredients. It's a bit like
reading a cookbook by a chef who lovingly understands the recipes
and can talk me through mistakes and substitutions (like what if I
don't have any flowering basil and I burned the polenta) versus
reading a cookbook that is just a list of exciting, complicated
recipes that are poorly understood by the author and best suited to
nonhumans who have way better kitchens than I do."
--J Matthews, author of Radically Condensed Instructions for Being Just as You Are
"The world of non-duality writing is so often filled with all the same tired, formulaic maxims that instead of pointing the reader to awakening, they really act to induce sleep! This book is so different. Joan writes from her own direct experience. She uses language that is consistently clear, alive, passionate, down-to-earth, and, ultimately, 'eye'-opening. It is her dedication to sincerity that powers this book to being a classic of philosophic, spiritual exploration. I cannot urge you to read this book strongly enough. For me, it is already a classic."
--Eric Gross, author of Trust in Liberation and Liberation from the Lie
"This books speaks straight to my heart. [Tollifson's] words are dynamite that blows up the concrete-encased assumptions that underpin the edifice of suffering. The book crackles with the energy of clarity on every page. Thank you, thank you more than words can say, for writing this book."
--Colleen Loehr, MD, psychiatrist
"Thank you for your new book. I really appreciate your sharing your life, especially your experiences with addictions to alcohol, smoking, and finger biting. What you write helps me enormously with my own pain around certain of my behaviors. May your wonderful work reach thousands and thousands of people!"
--Rev. Joyce Liechenstein, PhD, associate director and seminary chaplain of One Spirit Learning Alliance Interfaith Seminary
"Clear, clean, crisp! I really enjoyed this book, and have read all of Joan's books. The perspective offered in this writing is direct and clear. Nothing to grasp. Perfect."