January 19, 2017

What's Happening This Week at SpiritualityandPractice.com

Editor's Pick   

By Frederic and Mary Ann Brussat

How do we respond when we see governments and organizations pursuing policies and committing acts that seriously harm people and the planet? Throughout history, the world's religious and spiritual traditions have offered an option: Resist!  We've collected  quotes, prayers, readings, practices, and websites to support you on the path of resistance. 


"Celebrating a birthday reminds us of the goodness of life," wrote Nouwen, the prolific Christian spiritual writer, psychologist, and theologian, "and in this spirit we really need to celebrate people's birthdays every day, by showing gratitude, kindness, forgiveness, gentleness, and affection." If this taste of his pervasive kindness whets your appetite for more, you can contemplate his teachings through more quotes today.

More Practices: Birthday of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart 

The Practice of Compassion: A Multifaith Guide
A new e-course by Frank Rogers, Sally Taylor, Ted Falcon, Jamal Rahman, Philip Goldberg, and Thomas Moore    
January 16 - February 23, 2017

You're still in plenty of time to sign up for this e-course delving into multifaith wisdom about fully embodying compassion. When you sign up, you will find the sessions that have been sent so far archived in your account for easy access. Read more and sign up here:
A new year-long series by Contemplative Outreach      
Registration open until March 1st!

A Lenten e-course, a Discernment e-course during September, and an Advent e-course make up the heart of this year-long series, threaded together by Sunday mailings that bring you a steady stream of community wisdom. You can sign up any time before March 1, but we encourage you to register as soon as possible to benefit most from the weekly circle of sharing. Read more and sign up here:

Directed by Luc Jacquet

This eco-cinema masterwork celebrates the tenacity, patience, and scientific versatility of 82-year-old French polar explorer Claude Lorius, the man responsible for linking global climate change and the greenhouse gases created by human beings.


Directed by Andrea Arnold

This sprawling film is a portrait of a spunky 18 year old who ditches the burdens with which her irresponsible parents have saddled her and takes to the open road. In her journey, we see a portrait of the seeker in all of us that yearns to shed the tedium of our everyday lives.


World Report 2016
By Human Rights Watch Staff

The politics of fear has driven many countries to scale back human rights, citing dread of terrorist attacks and mass refugee flows. Other issues singled out in essays are making legal representation of transgender people a global priority, ending child marriage, and meeting the Global Development Goals' promise to girls.  

More Books: Resistance, Shinto, The Guru Drinks Bourbon?   
Children's Books   

By Daisy Hirst  
Even adorable monsters who are siblings have to work things out, as shown by Natalie and her little brother Alphonse, who is mostly fun but sometimes a nuisance. Their story provides ample evidence that children can and do express their feelings through art.


Ritual Space
By Darren Polito

Ritual is the punctuation of life. So what happens when you don't have your usual exclamation point in December? Our Creative Director writes about his experiences -- complete with a reveal of his sparkling tree costume!

By Samarth Jajoo

A seventh grader from Ahmedabad, India, shares a fascinating glimpse into his heritage and reminds us that "Diversity teaches us to appreciate the power of perspective -- different ways the same thing can be seen by people from different backgrounds."

A Commonplace Book
By Frederic Brussat

"Gadzooks! What a big chunk of God is to be found by looking into the face of someone you love," exclaims Lorna Landvik. Here are some of Frederic's favorite quotes about the intimacies, delights, and pleasures of lovers -- dedicated to his soulmate, Mary Ann. 
From Our Wisdom Archive   

"Take, I pray, the bits and pieces of virtue that are in each ruler and cause them to grow and mature," asks Richard J. Foster in Prayers from the Heart. "And take all the destructive motives and cause them to vanish like smoke in the wind." Perhaps his prayer and others in this collection can help guide your heart, mind, and intentions during these uncertain days.
A Thought to Carry with You  

In his book Who Speaks for God?, Christian writer and political activist Jim Wallis asks a question that's vital for all of us to consider in an era when politicians speak of building walls rather than bridges:

"Can we expand our vision of community beyond our own skin, family, race, tribe, culture, country, and species? Spiritual life is more than what we believe, it also includes how we related. Who is included in the we and who is not? That is both a spiritual and a political question. How we answer it will likely determine our future."

In spite of what politicians do, there's much that we can do at the grassroots level to increase understanding and a hospitable spirit, beginning with our own attitudes. "I do not want my house to be walled in on all sides and my windows to be shut," said Mahatma Gandhi. "I want the cultures of all lands to be blown about my house as freely as possible." And we could add that we want the subcultures of our own land also to blow freely through our homes, so that we can come to a mutual appreciation as a basis for resolving differences. 
Shalom, Salaam, Shanti, Peace,

Your Spirituality & Practice Team 
Frederic and Mary Ann Brussat 
Patricia Campbell Carlson 
Darren Polito