June 1, 2018

What's Happening This Week at SpiritualityandPractice.com

Editors' Pick   

Directed by Chloe Zhao

This creative blend of fact and fiction stars Brady Jandreau, an up-and-coming rodeo star whose career was cut short when he was thrown from a bucking horse and sustained a serious head injury. We keenly sense the ache in Brady's heart when again and again he is brought face-to-face with the imminent end of what he does best -- ride horses -- as he strives to rebuild his life.

By Frederic Brussat    

In pre-Prohibition America, Carrie Nation crusaded against alcohol, convinced that its destructive power was causing many of the problems in families and society. What can her zealous efforts teach us about our own advocacy of causes?

More Practices: Anniversary of the Founding of A.A., Anthony de Mello Day, Saint John XXIII Day

A new e-course by Julia Riley and Anne Boynton
June 4 - 29, 2018
This e-course is about renewing our lives by fostering creativity. Neuroscience reports that we make more neural connections and increase our well-being when we try new things. "Whatever you can do, or dream you can, begin it," writes Goethe."  Read more and subscribe:
A new e-course by Camille Adams Helminski and Daniel Thomas Dyer  
May 14 - June 15, 2018

This e-course remains open to everyone through June 15. It teaches sacred Names from the Islamic and Sufi traditions that serve as a doorway to self-knowledge and intimacy with our Sustainer. Read more and subscribe: 

Directed by Jason Reitman

A discouraged mother, trying to do way too much, is given the gift of a "night nanny." What starts out as a critique of the supermom cultural shibboleth moves into an exploration of the challenge of self-care that many women, not just those who are mothers, experience.

More Films: First Reformed, The Guardians, On Chesil Beach, Pope Francis: A Man of His Word  

Directed by Ai Weiwei

The vast and unprecedented migration of people moving from rural villages into cities is having a shattering effect on individuals and families. But a deep yearning keeps refugees going in the face of setbacks, disappointments, and constant humiliations, as Weiwei's empathic feature documentary shows.

More DVDs:
Black Panther, A Fantastic Woman, The Forgiven, I Kill Giants, Mad to Be Normal, Submergence, Vazante 

The Art of the Wasted Day
By Patricia Hampl   
A love of reverie goes against the American grain which glorifies movement, action, and triumph. But this exquisitely written book serves as a reminder to daydream, a pleasant and soothing experience.

More Books:
Being Black, Creation and the Cross, Midwives of an Unnamed Future, The 99 Names of God, Radical Love
Children's Books   

Hidden City
By Sarah Grace Tuttle    
Think "city" and "nature" don't go together? You'll change your assumptions after discovering all the wildlife in the pages of this beautifully illustrated collection of poems.
More Children's Books:  Walking in the City with Jane

By Patricia Campbell Carlson

Pure awe makes us want to watch this heroic rescue of a child over and over. How thirsty we are for models of spontaneous courage! 
Process Musings Blog
By Jay McDaniel

Wouldn't it be nice if people around the world were spiritually literate: that is, if they had a sense of moods and aspirations that are important to many people within and outside the many world religions?

More Blogs: A Confluence of Time, Culture, Deaths, and Politics, The Harmony of Complexity  

By S&P Team 
Eknath Easwaran (1910 - 1999) was a compassionate, erudite spiritual teacher who founded the Blue Mountain Center of Meditation in California. His lively, practical approach fits naturally with any faith or philosophy and brings universal ideals into daily life, as these books, quotations, spiritual practices, an e-course, and website show. 
From Our Wisdom Archive   

By Frederic and Mary Ann Brussat
The readings and practices here are designed to encourage you and your community to be on the growing edge, "the source of confidence when worlds crash and dreams whiten into ash," as theologian Howard Thurman puts it. We do what we can, and there is plenty to do.  

A Thought to Carry with You  

Expectations are, in the words of Elizabeth Bowen, "the most perilous form of dream." It's risky to harbor them. "Make no appointments; have no disappointments," Swami Satchidananda used to say, meaning that if you keep your mind open to what's happening in the moment rather than what you tried to arrange, life becomes a continual vibrant discovery.

And yet, it is one of life's paradoxes that a contrasting danger lurks in the abandoning of all expectation, for expectations are intimately linked to the spiritual practice of vision. Sometimes we do not even know exactly what we expect, but we feel something coming alive in us, like Zora Neale Hurston's character Janie in Their Eyes Were Watching God:

"... she began to stand around the gate and expect things. What things? She didn't know exactly. Her breath was gusty and short. She knew things that nobody ever told her. For instance, the words of the trees and the wind. ... She knew the world was a stallion rolling in the blue pasture of ether. She knew that God tore down the old world every evening and built a new one by sun-up. It was wonderful to see it take form with the sun and emerge from the gray dust of its making."

This week, be on the lookout for that kind of expectation: things you know in your bones that bring you confidence and hope. When our expectations align with the moving nature of life -- the wind, the "stallion rolling," the tearing-down and remaking of the world -- magic happens. 

Your Spirituality & Practice Team 
Frederic and Mary Ann Brussat 
Patricia Campbell Carlson 
Margaret Wakeley