R obert Ellwood is the author of over twenty-five books, ranging from textbooks in religious studies (including Many Peoples, Many Faiths, a popular world religion textbook) to books of religious history (The Fifties Spiritual Marketplace, The Sixties Spiritual Awakening, and Islands of the Dawn, among others) to inspirational books written from a theosophical perspective (Finding the Quiet Mind, The Pilgrim Self, Theosophy, The Cross and the Grail, Finding Deep Joy, Frodo's Quest). He was a professor of world religions at the University of Southern California for thirty years, from 1967 until his retirement in 1997.

Robert Ellwood was born in Normal, Illinois, in 1933. He was educated at the University of Colorado, Berkeley Divinity School at Yale in New Haven, Connecticut, and the University of Chicago Divinity School. He received his Ph.D. in History of Religion at Chicago in 1967. He has been an Episcopal priest and a chaplain in the U.S. Navy. He is a member of the Theosophical Society in America and a priest in the Liberal Catholic Church, a small denomination using traditional Catholic styles of worship while presenting an esoteric interpretation of Christianity. He now lives in Ojai, California. He has two grown children, Richard, a teacher at Happy Valley School in Ojai, and Fay Ellen, a graduate student at the Claremont School of Theology in California.