June 21, 2018

What's Happening This Week at SpiritualityandPractice.com

Editors' Pick   

By Nancy L. Rosenblum
In an era when so many find it hard or even impossible to trust Washington politicians, the courts, or the police, people are clinging to neighborliness as a lifeline of hope. Pluralism and inclusion are blooming in neighborhoods across the land. People are learning more about their rights and obligations as citizens, expressing democracy in helpful, healing, everyday ways.

By Patricia Campbell Carlson
By founding the modern hospice movement, Saunders revolutionized the way we care for the ill, the dying, and the bereaved. "You matter because you are you," she observed, "and you matter to the end of your life." 

By Frederic and Mary Ann Brussat   

Something about the changed pace of our lives during the summer months makes it a little easier to dedicate time to growth on the spiritual path. Here are 31 practices to get your summer off to a good start.  
More Practices: Summer Solstice,  Birthday of Helen Keller

A new e-course by Frederic and Mary Ann Brussat, Patricia Campbell Carlson, and Margaret Wakeley
July 2 - August 31, 2018 
Join us for a summer's worth of rituals that you can integrate into the rhythms of your life. "Over time, as we become more conscious of the rituals that shape us, we become more able to shape them," writes John Izzo. Read more and subscribe (only $25 for two months!):
A new e-course by Donald Altman
July 2 - 27, 2018 
One of Buddhism's paths to awakening is called the "perfections," or paramitas: ten guiding principles for creating a blessed life. Donald Altman broadens them to include wisdom from other traditions. His guidance on the paramitas has been used by the United Nations and chaplaincy programs. We are delighted to have him lead his second S&P e-course! Read more and subscribe: 
A current e-course by Julia Riley and Anne Boynton
June 4 - 29, 2018 (now running, with room for you) 
Turn the ordinary into the extraordinary. Move from worry to wonder. Make life special one moment at a time. You still have time to sign up and receive this marvelous fuel for creativity from our friends at Sage-ing International. Read more and subscribe: 

Directed by Colin McIvor

This family film, set in Belfast during World War II, treats animals with affection and respect. It emphasizes the importance of saving animals from callous decisions and puts just the right emphasis upon this true story's blend of comedy and sobering drama.

More Films: Damsel, The Catcher Was a Spy 

Directed by Ramona S. Diaz
Diaz has made a valiant documentary about the quiet heroism of women nurses, doctors, and social workers in the world's busiest maternity ward, serving poor women in Manilla, Philippines. These workers patiently try to stem the tide of ignorance, rigid traditions, and cultural shibboleths about birth, children, and caring for them.

More DVDs:

In Search of Wisdom
By Matthieu Ricard, Christophe Andre, and Alexandre Jollien     
These three accomplished writers model for us the meaningful kind of conversation that can take place when we meet on the common ground of shared humanity. They head for difficult territory in their treatment of embodying ethics, teaching simplicity to children, and dealing realistically with guilt.

More Books:
The Life of Yogananda, Pope Francis' Morning Homilies IV, Unbelievable
Children's Books   

The Pope's Cat
By Jon Sweeney      
A little stray cat has been living on the streets of Rome hiding behind trash cans near the gelato shop and hoping for some scraps from the fish market ... until the Pope discovers her and takes her back to his apartment in the Vatican! This story illustrates the Pope's kindness and hospitality to all beings, large and small.  


Painting Peace
By Kazuaki Tanahashi      
Tanahashi wants his art to serve peace in a world besieged by fear, war, division, and discord. Often we envision an artist as a solitary soul who works independently, but Tanahashi has made a point out of creating artworks in collaboration with others. He even invented a gigantic brush with multiple handles so that many hands could paint at once!

KidSpirit Youth Voices Blog
By Heer Cheema

Congratulations to Heer Cheema, who won a 2018 Interfaith Connections Award from KidSpirit for this compelling reflection on the lasting impact of division and displacement. "The creation of a 'no-man's-land' has a ripple effect across generations," she writes, "long after the cause of the event."
The Practicing Democracy Project

By the S&P Team  
If you haven't visited the Democracy Mentors and Teachers page lately, you will notice some new faces. Marian Wright Edelman, Harriett Beecher Stowe, Lois Gibbs, and Starhawk have each made major contributions to American democracy, and we are honored to add them to our growing list.   
The Elder Spirituality Project

By Parker Palmer 
Looking back on eight decades of his life, author and activist Parker Palmer is reflective, eager to observe what is happening. We are not surprised by this admission: "I like being old because the view from the brink is striking, a full panorama of my life -- and a bracing breeze awakens me to new ways of understanding my own past, present, and future."   
From Our Wisdom Archive   

By Frederic Brussat 
Peder Severin Kroyer's painting shows two women walking the beach at that magic time of the day called "the blue hour" when the sky and the sea seem to embrace each other. A heightened appreciation comes through of the gift we receive when someone offers his or her complete presence to us.
A Thought to Carry with You  

Happy summer! And happy winter to our friends in the southern hemisphere. May this change of season renew in us hope and a playful spirit.  
For many of us, summer brings a spate of travels. It's a good time to share a short tale from Philip Goldberg's Roadsigns on the Spiritual Path. Phil had risen early for a morning flight, and he didn't get a chance to fit in his customary morning meditation. No problem, he figured; he could meditate on the plane. But, as he describes it:
"The environment was not conducive. Passengers maneuvering carry-on bags through the aisle bumped into me. The obnoxious voice of a deejay kept introducing songs better suited for dance clubs. And the man behind me took it upon himself to entertain his seatmates. He spoke loud and laughed louder. I spent my meditation contemplating wise-ass remarks to say to him and mentally composing an angry letter to the airline. Then it dawned on me: Who is more spiritual, a guy who tries to make his companions happy or the curmudgeon in front of him who despoils his own meditation with thoughts of resentment and revenge?"
This week, travel as gently and flexibly as possible through situations that present themselves. Notice whether at any point you are being encouraged to ease up on your expectations of what you have set out to do -- even as part of your devotional practice -- to find the living essence of a moment.  
Your Spirituality & Practice Team 
Frederic and Mary Ann Brussat 
Patricia Campbell Carlson 
Margaret Wakeley