top of page
natural bridges_edited.jpg

Spirituality for Our Time


Hello, welcome to my website and my spiritual teaching Spirit X!


I am a Serbia-born, California-based author, philosopher and spiritual teacher. After earning my Ph.D in philosophy and gaining rich and vast life and spiritual experiences, I have fully focused on creating Spirit X, a vision of spirituality for our both challenging and inspiring times.


There are many ways to interact with me since I offer talks, classes, workshops, retreats, online content and programs, and private sessions.


Originally from Serbia, I live and create in Santa Cruz, CA with my wife Shawna, son Neven, cat Luna and pet rock Oso.


Photo by Tracy Rasmussen


Spirit X is a spiritual teaching for our time. It blends the best from spiritual traditions (Hinduism, Buddhism, mystical Christianity, Taoism and Sufism) with the best from the legacies of the modern world (psychology, philosophy, science and technology, culture, arts, pop culture, individual freedom, etc.). The basic premise of Spirit X is that a fulfilled spiritual life in the modern world is everyone’s possibility and right.


On a spiritual level, Spirit X is a call and a vision for more Unity, Peace, Freedom and Love. The best way to do that is through a carefully and richly designed spiritual practice.


On a practical level, Spirit X is an invitation to introduce genuine spirituality into many areas of our lives such as relationship, family, education, work, career, culture, society, government, etc. Spirit X simply brings spirituality into the mainstream of our culture and society. In times like ours, genuine spirituality is no longer an individual choice but a personal, cultural, evolutionary and spiritual necessity.


As a teaching, Spirit X is tailored for modern-day spiritual practitioners and has many entry points.


The basic premise of Spirit X teaching is that genuine spirituality deserves to become a mainstream phenomenon and is everyone’s potential and right.


For more about Spirit X, check out my first book, "Spirit X: Spirituality for the Global and Digital Age - Basic Principles".

spirit x_black-trans.png


spirit x_black-trans.png

:  Basic Principles

Spirit X: Spirituality for the Global and Digital Age - Basic Principles is the first book in the Spirit X book series. With its 69 basic principles, it offers the basics for living a spiritual life in our time.


The book consists of two levels, Spirit X 1.0 and Spirit X 2.0, and four parts, The Self, The World, The Book of Ways and the Book of Codes.


Spirit X 1.0  (Part 1, The Self and Part 2, The World) is an experiential synthesis of emerging global spirituality. At this stage, spiritual practitioners design their own spiritual practice by blending the best teachings and practices from spiritual traditions (such as mediation, prayer, contemplation, working with a teacher, and having a spiritual community) with the legacies from the modern world that can be utilized for the spiritual growth and Awakening (such as psychology, philosophy, science and technology, arts, and pop-culture).


Spirit X 2.0  (Part 3, The Book of Ways and Part 4, The Book of Codes) brings the whole process to another level by utilizing and embodying the teaching of the Ways and the Codes. Ways help us re-discover our True Self and tasting and fully living  Liberation, while Codes help us navigate the multidimensional world of manifestation meaningfully and skillfully. The Ways include the Way of Meditation, The Way of Awareness, The Way of Spiritual Warrior, The Way of Spiritual Trickster, The Way of Spiritual Muse and many more. The Codes include The Child Code, We-the-People Code, Achiever Code, 60’s Code, Mediterranean Code and many more.


Spirit X as a teaching is an invitation to make genuine spirituality an everyday reality in the present-day global world.


“ To say Nikola Anandamali Ristic is holistic is like saying the ocean is salty. In Spirit X, he casts a remarkably wide net, drawing wisdom from all corners of the vast spiritual terrain, reconciling all kinds of paradoxes, and harmonizing elements that appear to be contradictory but are, from the right perspective and in the right hands, perfectly compatible: the ancient and the ultra-modern; tradition and innovation; inner and outer; spirit and matter; transcendence and immanence; the sacred and the (seemingly) profane; body and soul; visible and invisible; lofty ideas and gritty reality. Above all, the book is as practical as it is inspiring and enjoyable. Readers will find the book a great companion as they move ahead on the spiritual path. ”

~ Philip Goldberg

author of Spiritual Practice for Crazy Times, The Life of Yogananda; and American Veda.

Spirit X is a poetic Integral guide and workbook for the 21st century that skillfully leads us to the unspeakable. Laced with instructions for profound practices, it teaches us how to use every aspect of our life, including love relationships, for waking-up and growing-up to put our gifts and purpose in service of creating a better world.

Spirit X should be on every nightstand and coffee table for our daily inspiration and spiritual practice. ”

~ Martin Ucik

author of Integral Relationships: A Manual for Men

and Sex Purpose Love: Couples in Integral Relationships Creating a Better World

spirit x_black-trans.png

:  Playful Presence

Spirit X: Playful Presence is the second book in the Spirit X series. It is a set of 10 meditations, 17 prayers and 10 contemplations. Enriched with images to evoke reading with the whole being and the Heart, the book is a spiritual-visual journey into the depths of our Soul and True Self.


The premise of this book is simple: once you meditate, pray and contemplate, your life turns into a playful presence - a playful, elegant, creative and fearless embodiment and expression of your and our deeper being and Reality.


In challenging and inspiring times, such embodiment and expression is an individual, cultural, spiritual and evolutionary necessity.


May Sprit X inspire and shape your offering.


“A book about the meditative spirit should feel like a meditation.  Playful Presence achieves that task very poetically.  This is an undeniably clean, straightforward and basically friendly volume of invitations to inner practice.  Nikola Ristic guides our passage through many diverse perspectives, cultural moods & contemplative methods as he gently seduces our attention toward the simple quality of being.  A journey that began in Spirit X now continues to blossom richly in this excellent companion for anyone who wishes to breathe more deeply into the clenched fist -- and feel it beginning to open.”


~ Layman Pascal



“On the path of ascension, in this time of awakening, we encounter many guides. Spirit X Playful Presence is a fresh roadmap through the chaos and terrors of the modern day. It is a gentle reminder that the truth can be found in stillness and awareness. We all struggle at times with how we see ourselves and the world. Ristic's experiential meditations, prayers, and contemplations can help us evolve with our society, our species, and the cosmos. He reveals the "codes" to achieve self-actualization and usher in the new age of consciousness in a playful and thought-provoking way. This book is a "go-to" for modern spirituality. Bravo!”


~ Angelina Avedano, PhD

author of Living Grief: A Mother's Odyssey of Surrender, Renewal, and Mad Joy

"Spirit X: Playful Presence is an elegant, gorgeously illustrated companion to the first Spirit X volume.  With a series of light, cheerfully delivered pointing out instructions, spiritual invocations, divine petitions, and cosmic, deep-time reflections, Nikola guides readers on an integral practice journey through the Three Faces of Spirit.  In this uncertain time between worlds, Nikola invites us to remember, and to find restful ease, in our true Kosmic home."

~ Bruce Alderman

Integral Stage, JFK University


Private Sessions

IEC conf pic_edited_edited_edited.jpg

One of the best ways to interact and work with me is through private sessions. The one-on-one container has been a proven way of spiritual growth and getting good results in many traditional and modern settings such as spirituality, psychology, healing, and coaching.


I offer both spiritual counseling and spiritual mentoring.


In spiritual counseling, I help clients address certain problems from a spiritual perspective such as anxiety, stress, life overwhelm, the lack of clarity about one’s life and future, dealing with personal or global crisis, the lack of motivation, finding life purpose and much more.


In spiritual mentoring, I help and support students on the spiritual path create a spiritual practice and life, navigate the contemporary spiritual scene, live holistic and integral lives by cultivating body, mind and spirit, resolve the yearning for spiritual awakening, live a modern-day awakened life and much more.


I am always amazed with the results that can be achieved in the trusted one-on-one container and believe that this kind of work is becoming a necessity in times like ours.



Another way to interact with me and other like-minded spiritual practitioners is to attend my retreats. Retreats are an opportunity to dive deeper together in a loving and supportive container away from our everyday karma.


On a deeper level, retreats are an opportunity for us to re-discover our spiritual essence, our True Self, and to live, love and offer from that place. On a more practical level, retreats are an opportunity for practitioners to address and improve some areas of their lives such as relationship, family, work and career, health, finding one’s purpose, serving the world meaningfully, and yearning for spiritual awakening.


If organized by me and my team, retreats are held in the amazing redwoods of the Santa Cruz mountains in Northern California. If organized by invitation, retreats can be held anywhere worldwide.



in middle schools

The vision of Spirit X is to bring genuine spirituality to the mainstream of our culture and society. One of the best ways to do this is to elegantly introduce it in education.


I have had the honor and privilege of introducing mindfulness to middle school students in Santa Cruz, CA and have been blown away by the results. Both middle school students and teachers embraced mindfulness practices with utmost respect and enthusiasm.


With Spirit X Mindfulness for Middle School Students, I developed classes and workshops tailored for middle school students. The method helps students experience mindfulness through lectures, mindful practices and mindful games. Activities include conscious breathing, techniques to calm down, mindful reflection, mindful eating, cultivating peace, joy, kindness, gratitude and much more.


I also developed 1, 2 and 5 minute modules for teachers who want to introduce mindfulness themselves into their classes and other activities with middle school students.


If you are interested in bringing mindfulness into your school, please contact me.

bottom of page