Have you seen our current call for submissions? Click here to view the call for papers and description of our upcoming issue, Healing Social and Ecological Rifts.

Healing Social and Ecological Rifts
Guest Editor: LaDawn Haglund
Submission Deadline: September 15, 2020
Click here to view the call for submissions

Thank you for choosing to submit your paper to The Arrow Journal. The following instructions will help you provide our editorial team with everything we need for a smooth review and publication process. Please read and follow them when submitting your paper.

The Arrow explores the relationship between contemplative practice, politics, and activism. We publish high quality articles that blend intellectual rigor with contemplative wisdom, experiential grounding, and accessibility to a broad audience.

The Arrow accepts submissions in three primary categories:

  • Comments: At 500 – 2000 words, Comments offer a concise argument or discussion of a topic.
  • Essays: At 2000 – 5000 words, Essays provide a more substantial discussion, analysis, or argument on a topic.
  • Scholarly Articles: At 4000 – 8000 words, Scholarly Articles provide rigorous scholarship on a topic. We offer double-blind, academic peer review for all Scholarly Articles. Please see below for guidelines on submissions for peer review.

We welcome pitches and manuscripts on a rolling basis. If you would like to submit a piece, please read several articles of varying length in order to familiarize yourself with the range of content we publish.

General Submission Guidelines:

  • Please read the journal. This is the best guide to what we look for in submissions.
  • We strongly encourage authors to integrate awareness of their own positionality in submissions. We prefer scholarship and argument that situate the author’s standpoint within the material discussed, rather than abstract theory.
  • Please avoid using cliche spiritual jargon (e.g., ‘oneness’). In particular, please do not use the language of spirituality to avoid dealing with difficult issues of power and politics.
  • Avoid overly technical language—both from the social sciences and from spiritual jargon. If a concept is integral to an argument, define the terminology clearly, but take care not to overuse the terminology even once defined.
  • Being able to distill the main points of your piece into one sentence is a good barometer of the clarity of your argument or narrative.
  • Our proofing language is American English, and we ask that citations follow Chicago Style footnotes. For more detailed information on citations, spelling of non-English (e.g., Sanskrit) words, and formatting, please consult our Style Guide (below).

Essay and Comment Submissions

Submissions of Comments and Essays may be sent via email as an attached Microsoft Word Document to For Essays, please include a 150-word abstract summarizing the argument of the essay.

Authors who have an idea for a Comment or Essay are welcome to submit an abstract (150 words max) for initial consideration of an invitation to submit a manuscript.

Peer Review Submissions

The Arrow is committed to providing a venue for high-quality, peer-reviewed research on the applications of contemplative wisdom and practice to pressing social issues. Peer-reviewed Scholarly Article submissions should follow standards for rigorous scholarly work, including a well-researched argument, engagement with relevant literature, and thorough citations. We invite articles of a theoretical or conceptual nature, as well as research and review articles.

Authors submitting Scholarly Articles for peer review should follow these additional instructions:

  • The primary manuscript document should be submitted as a Microsoft Word file with the following information: manuscript title, author name(s), primary author contact information, 150-word abstract, 3-6 keywords, manuscript, and complete references in Chicago Style footnotes. (Please include references only as in-document footnotes, using the Chicago Style footnote format. The Arrow does not publish a separate alphabetized reference list.)
  • Please submit a second blind copy of the article as a Microsoft Word file, with all references to the author’s name and other identifying information removed throughout.

Submissions of Scholarly Articles for peer review may be sent via email as an attached Microsoft Word Document to

An illustration by our Creative Director accompanies most articles and essays as a complementary artistic contribution to the journal. If you would like to explore possible illustration content for a piece, please contact the editors at the time of submission.

Thank you for your interest in The Arrow.

Style Guide

Formatting and Organization

  • File Title: Include first initial, period, last name, abbreviated title, and the word “Draft.” (e.g., “G.Dayley, Economic Utility, Draft”)
  • Text: Times New Roman, 12pt, single spaced, indent new paragraphs
  • Layout: 1” page margins, page numbers bottom center
  • Headings: Number all headings and subheadings (these will be removed in publication). Examples: (section 1), 1.1 (section 1, subsection 1), 1.2.1 (section 1, subsection 2, part 1)
  • Web links: Web links may be included as in-text hyperlinks for online publications. E-books and print publications may transpose web links to footnotes.


  • Please cite all references to others’ writing, ideas, inventions, research, and spoken material using numbered, superscript footnotes.
  • Include full author and publication information in footnotes, using Chicago style. Examples of common citations follow. Please visit the Purdue Online Writing Lab for a comprehensive reference for Chicago Style.
    • Book: Sakyong Mipham, The Shambhala Principle: Discovering Humanity’s Hidden Treasure (New York: Harmony Books, 2013), 121.
    • Chapter in Edited Collection: Charles R. Johnson, “Be Peace Embodied,” in Mindful Politics: A Buddhist Guide to Making the World a Better Place, ed. Melvin McLeod (Boston: Wisdom Publications, 2006), 31.
    • Journal Article (specific page): Holly Gayley, “Reimagining Buddhist Ethics on the Tibetan Plateau,” The Journal of Buddhist Ethics 20 (2013): 251.
    • Journal Article (entire article): Holly Gayley, “Reimagining Buddhist Ethics on the Tibetan Plateau,” The Journal of Buddhist Ethics 20 (2013): 247-286.
    • Journal Article (volume & issue number): Richard J. Davidson and Alfred W. Kaszniak, “Conceptual and Methodological Issues in Research on Mindfulness and Meditation,” American Psychologist 70, no. 7 (2015): 581-592.
    • Magazine Article (print): Judy Lief, “How Not to Freak Out,” Lion’s Roar, November 2016, 49.
    • Magazine Article (online): Ta-Nehisi Coates, “My President Was Black: A History of the First African American White House—and of What Came Next,” The Atlantic, January/February 2017,
  • To cite material in The Arrow, use the standard journal article citation (plus access date and URL) for our digital issues, and use the online magazine article citation for our online essays.
    • Issue article: Alexis Shotwell, “‘Like Water into Water,’ If Buddhism, Then Feminism. But What Sort of Feminism?,” The Arrow: A Journal of Wakeful Society, Culture & Politics 3, no. 1 (2016): 4-13, accessed January 10, 2017,
    • Online essay: Kelsey Blackwell, “Rising to the Challenge: Race and Inclusivity in the Sangha,” The Arrow: A Journal of Wakeful Society, Culture & Politics, June 27, 2016,
  • For multiple quotations from the same source, give the full citation the first time and an abbreviated citation thereafter.
    • Abbreviated examples:  Mipham, Shambhala Principle, 121. Gayley, “Reimagining Buddhist Ethics,” 253.
    • Consecutive citations of the same work, after giving the full or abbreviated citation, may be denoted: Ibid., 255.
  • Be sure to cite using Chicago style for footnotes, not for a bibliographic entry.
    • Like this: Charles Eisenstein, Sacred Economics, (Berkeley: Evolver Editions, 2012).
    • Not this: Eisenstein, Charles. Sacred Economics. Berkeley: Evolver Editions, 2012.
  • Include page numbers for direct quotes from written materials. Page numbers should appear in the footnote citation.
  • Superscript numbers for footnote appear after punctuation.

Spelling and Grammar

Proofing language: American English

Foreign language terminology:

  • Use English translations of non-English words when possible to make concepts accessible to widest audience. Example: “emptiness” rather than śūnyatā
  • When using non-English terms, use appropriate language symbols (diacritics) to indicate pronunciation. Example: jñāna
  • When introducing a new non-English term, use italics for the first use and provide the English translation in parentheses or in an explanatory sentence.
    • Example: This school of Buddhism is known as Mahāyāna (“Great Vehicle”). Mahāyāna practices include…
    • Exceptions: Common borrowed words (Buddha, Buddhist, etc.) need not be italicized on the first usage.


  • Quotation marks: Use double quotation marks (“”) first, with single quotes (‘’) as second level. Example: The author writes, “We need to create a ‘new story,’ a fundamental shift in how we view our world.”
  • Commas: Use the “Oxford comma” before the final item in a list. Example: Researchers are applying neuroscience techniques to study human perception, cognition, emotion, and social behavior.
  • Semicolons: Use semicolons to separate two related sentences (no comma splices), or to delineate listed phrases that include commas. Example: The article describes methods for identifying community needs, strengths, and resources; building cohesion among local leaders and community organizations; and managing conflict.
  • Colons: When a word, phrase, or list of words or phrases follow a colon, the first word should not be capitalized. When a complete clause follows a colon, the first word should be capitalized as a new sentence.
  • Interruptors: In general, interrupting phrases may be separated by commas or em-dashes (“—”). If a sentence contains multiple commas in addition to an interrupting phrase or clause, we encourage separating the interrupter with em-dashes.
  • Cutting quotes: “First part… Second part.”
  • Period goes after quote for specific “word”. “Period goes inside quote for clause or full sentence.”

Visual Materials

  • Please limit your use of visual materials such as charts, tables, and images, using text explanations when possible.
  • When including visual materials, indicate where the figure should appear by including a note in brackets in the text in your manuscript. Example: Fluctuations in GDP seem to occur independently of newer social-economic metrics such as Gross National Happiness. [Insert Figure 2 here]
  • Submit tables and charts in an appendix at the end of your article. Label visual materials “Figure 1,” “Figure 2,” etc. and include a brief title or explanation above each.
  • An illustration by our Creative Director accompanies all articles, essays, and blogs as a complementary artistic contribution to the journal. If you would like to explore possible illustration content for a piece, please contact the editors at the time of submission. We welcome the possibility of including sketches or photographs by authors as well. Please consult the editors prior to submitting supplementary images. Due to copyright law, we can only publish material owned by authors.

Additional Notes – Reader Accessibility

We encourage a high level of sophistication and scholarship in submissions; however, articles should be accessible to people who may not be experts in the author’s field. Specifically:

  • Authors should assume that readers can understand them (i.e., don’t repeat a point you have just made)
  • At the same time, don’t assume readers are familiar with specific schools of thought/academic fields. Define terms and concepts as appropriate.