October 7, 2016

What's Happening This Week at SpiritualityandPractice.com

Editor's Pick   

Directed by Mira Nair

Based on a true story, Queen of Katwe is one of the most Spiritually Literate Films of 2016. In a world where girls are still treated poorly, denied access to education and the traditional realms of business and the marketplace, here is the enthralling drama of a young African girl who begins an adventuresome journey into the male-dominated sport of chess competitions.

By Thubten Chodron

As we listen to presidential candidates Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump before the November 2016 U.S. election, Thubten Chodron reminds us to consider people's motivations and to let even their negative actions reinforce our sense of compassion.

By Frederic and Mary Ann Brussat

This week, we celebrate the 90th birthday of Thich Nhat Hanh, the world-renowned writer, scholar, poet, peace activist, and Vietnamese Buddhist monk, born October 11, 1926. To help you name this day, we offer personal explorations, spiritual practices, an e-course, prayers, and one of our all-time favorite calligraphy memes.

More Practices: Birthday of Philip Berrigan, Birthday of Eleanor Roosevelt 

A new e-course by Cynthia Bourgeault      
October 31 - December 2, 2016

In this long-awaited e-course, master teacher Cynthia Bourgeault will lead you step by step into the heart of Teilhard de Chardin's teachings. He created an integral vision yoking science and religion in a common endeavor to "harness the energies of love." Read more and sign up here:

Reminder! Our October e-courses are still open:

A new e-course by Ted Falcon and Jamal Rahman       
October 3 - 28, 2016

Embracing Living: The Welcoming Prayer
A new e-course by Contemplative Outreach     
October 3 - 8, 2016

Directed by Hannes Holm

Not very often in a movie do we see how a difficult person's heart can become tender. This quirky Swedish dramedy reveals the harm that results from our making quick judgments about people and shows how even the crustiest among us can be set on a new path.

Directed by Ava DuVernay

This eye-opening documentary takes on the atrocious and unrelentingly unjust treatment of blacks throughout American history. DuVernay fearlessly zeroes in on "mass incarceration," a strategy of power-hungry white presidents and racists of every stripe.

More Films:
Among the Believers, Do Not Resist, Milton's Secret, 100 Years, Sand Storm  

Directed by Afia Nathaniel

In Urdu, "Dukhtar" means daughter. This film, Pakistan's 2014 entry for the Oscars, explores the enduring mother-daughter bond and the quest for freedom after years of living in a rigid and authoritarian community.

More DVDs: City of Gold, Complete Unknown, Hunt for the Wilderpeople, The Innocents, Last Car to Darwin, Swiss Army Man

By Harvey Cox 

With flashes of brilliance, Cox charts the ways in which the Market became Divine, with the public subservient to those wielding economic power. He points out plenty of alternatives to this pseudo-religious idolatry.

More Books: The End of White Christian America, Exposed, The Life Project, The Looting Machine, Tomorrow's Battlefield 

KidSpirit Youth Voices Blog

We are elated to learn that KidSpirit received the top magazine honor from the Religion News Association: the 2016 award for Magazine Overall Excellence. In an unprecedented decision,
the country's preeminent journalists honored the courage and conviction of young people who work together to create the only youth-led publication dedicated to exploring life's big questions.

We were already proud to be working with KidSpirit; now, all the more so. Check out their most recent blog by Prerna Chatterjee on Gandhiji.
Praying the News Blog
By Patricia Campbell Carlson

The ASPCA advocates for responsible dog ownership and legislation that addresses concerns about individual animals and owners. So -- being in love with some gentle, adorable pit bulls ourselves -- we were dismayed to learn of the latest breed-wide ban in Montreal.


Lin Jensen is the founding teacher and senior teacher emeritus of the Chico Zen Sangha. He is also the founder of River Willow Refuge, a prison outreach program and a Buddhist chaplain at High Desert State Prison. To enjoy his keen sensitivity wrapped in everyday practices, dive into these articles, books, interviews, and quotes.

The Reverence Project   

From The Hour of Land to The Rainbow Landscape, from Albert Schweitzer's Essential Writings to Pete's Dragon, you will find much on our newly updated Reverence pages to spur your awe and regard for all life. Be sure to check out the 16 "Go Deeper" icons to discover a diverse bounty of resources.

From Our Wisdom Archive   

An interview on Sufi practice with Andrew Harvey

What if we replaced rudeness, road rage, negative political ads, hate crimes, animal cruelty, environmental degradation, and so forth with acts of courtesy and kindness? In this extensive interview with Frederic Brussat, contemporary mystic Andrew Harvey helps us understand adab, the Sufi practice of profound courtesy of the heart.

A Thought to Carry with You  
"A single bracelet doesn't jingle," says the Fulfulde proverb. You can find variations in every culture:  Basa tribe members observe that "one hand can't tie a bundle," and in ancient Rome the saying was, "one hand washes the other." The importance of people helping one another is recognized worldwide.

Social psychologists are still searching for answers as to what kinds of people are helpful and why. They acknowledge that religious faith inclines people towards this trait and that it is bolstered by other spiritual qualities like empathy, cheerfulness, and humility. That is, helpfulness shows up in people like you who devote time to honing your character and building a repertoire of spiritual practices.

With much happening around us that can use a soothing touch and thoughtful actions, this is a good week to remember that spirituality belongs not only at the altar but in every interaction. After all, altruism is catching. The model you provide raises the bar for those around you to help others, too. Please know that we are profoundly grateful for the part you play in this cycle, one that makes of this world a sanctuary. 

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