June 10, 2016

What's Happening This Week at SpiritualityandPractice.com

Editor's Pick   

By Frederic and Mary Ann Brussat

From the 27th annual film festival of Human Rights Watch -- a nonprofit known for its impartial reporting and targeted advocacy -- come films that witness to human rights violations that are still widely denied and evaded around the world. The films challenge us to do the right thing, speak truth to power, and be open to the many teachers of human rights who walk the talk.

Alcoholics Anonymous, known for its liberating 12 Steps, was founded on June 10 in 1935 by William Wilson and Dr. Robert Smith. On this anniversary of their meeting, we offer reflections and practices that pay tribute to this practical form of spirituality. To learn more, please visit our 12-Step Spirituality tradition, where you will find related books, e-courses, films, spiritual practices, videos, teachers, and quotes.

More Practices: Birthday of Anne Frank, Feast Day of St. Anthony of Padua, Birthday of Issa, Birthday of John Wesley, Father's Day  

By Thomas Keating and Contemplative Outreach      
June 6 - July 1, 2016

Each week, we explore one parable through audio clips of Fr. Keating's insights, reflections by retreat leaders, and Visio Divina with Nicholas Roerich's paintings. We are about to start a revolutionary parable comparing the Kingdom of God to yeast. Won't you join us?
Practicing Spirituality with Anthony de Mello
By Frederic and Mary Ann Brussat      
May 30 - July 8, 2016

Our sessions this week have focused on careful attention to thoughts, sensations, reactions, and each day's events. Come join us and notice de Mello's insightful essays, marvelous teaching stories, and engaging practices touch you. You can sign up here: 

Directed by Jeremy Sims

A cab driver with a terminal case of stomach cancer  leaps at a chance to end his life with dignity through voluntary euthanasia in Australia's Northern Territory. He decides to drive his taxi across the desert to get there -- a trip that turns into a quest for love and meaning.

More Films:
A Bigger Splash, The Lobster, Jia Zhangke - A Guy from Fenyang 

A War
Directed by Tobias Lindholm 

This well-acted and ethically rich drama -- nominated for Best Foreign Language Film in the 2016 Academy Awards-- sensitively explores the burdensome ambiguity of military leadership and conscience and the hardships faced by soldiers' families.

More DVDs:
 Zootopia, Anomalisa, Under the Gun, Hail, Caesar!

Directed by Morgan Neville

Throughout his prestigious career, Yo-Yo Ma has learned fresh approaches to music through mentors and inspired others to do the same. In 1998 he established The Silk Road Project to explore how the arts can advance global understanding. In this documentary now in theaters Morgan Neville presents a rounded and rousing look at the 15-year history of this musical collective and its extraordinary fusion sound.


KidSpirit Youth Voices Blog
By Ameena Naqvi

What can we learn from the Prophet Yunus -- the biblical Jonah -- who abandoned his community by thinking there was nothing he could do to help with their crisis? 

From Our Wisdom Archive   

Compiled by Frederic and Mary Ann Brussat
Designed by Darren Polito

"Every morning I turn my face to the wind and scatter my seed," says an Arab proverb. "It is not difficult to scatter seeds, but it takes courage to go on facing the wind." This week, in honor of the courageous people suffering, documenting, and fighting human-rights abuses, we offer these
12 quotes about courage.  
A Thought to Carry with You  

In Ethics for the New Millennium, His Holiness the Dalai Lama splits contentment into two distinct categories. In the realm of spiritual qualities like compassion, peace, and courage, "contentment is neither necessary nor in fact is it desirable." In other words, if your desire is to be kinder or more serene or more able to stand tall amid life's buffetings, let your yearnings flourish!

Desires for limited material things are another matter entirely. His Holiness writes: "If what we seek is finite, there is every danger that having acquired it, we will still not be satisfied. In the case of the desire for wealth, even if a person were somehow able to take over the economy of an entire country, there is every chance they would begin to think in terms of acquiring that of other countries too."

The holy month of Ramadan -- when our Muslim sisters and brothers are fasting, intensifying prayers and scripture reading, and increasing charity -- is an excellent time to remember His Holiness's words: "Desire for what is finite can never really be sated. On the other hand, when we develop contentment, we can never be disappointed or disillusioned." In the spirit of cultivating contentment, look for one or more ways to be in solidarity with all who celebrate Ramadan. The Parliament of World Religions offers suggestions like fasting (even just once or once a week) and praying or meditating in your own tradition five times a day, including a prayer for peace and mutual understanding. If you already celebrate Ramadan, then please know the goodwill that many people hold with and for you. 
Your Spirituality & Practice Team 
Frederic and Mary Ann Brussat 
Patricia Campbell Carlson 
Darren Polito