• meditation,  religion,  spirituality

    Hiding inside a religious box

    instead of embracing an alternative reality This is Thursday of Week 3 of the Richard Rohr meditations that I’m following this year. This statement stood out to me: “In fact, religion is often the easiest place to hide from God.” Based on my personal experience and my observations of others (including lay people and clergy), this is true. It’s common to follow all the rules of a religion. It’s less common to make an intimate connection with the divine.

  • contemplation,  meditation,  panENtheism,  spiritual renewal,  spirituality

    Meditating with Fr. Richard Rohr

    Spread Love in 2018 For 2018, I’ve decided to follow Fr. Richard Rohr’s daily meditations. I invite you to follow along with me by subscribing at the Center for Action and Contemplation. The theme for this year is “Image and Likeness:” Over the course of this year’s Daily Meditations, discover opportunities to incarnate love in your unique context by unveiling the Image and Likeness of God in all that you see and do. This is my favorite quote from today’s meditation: God loves us center to center. Happy New Year!

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  • awe,  joy,  spiritual renewal,  spirituality

    Want to have an awe-filled life?

    Greater Good Science Center published this excellent article by Alex Springer: Who Experiences the Most Awe? The bottom line is that anyone can experience more awe in their lives. Springer writes, “How can you become more awe-some? Start by scheduling in more awe-inspiring moments, such as spending time in nature or around your favorite art.” Read the article and let me know what you think!

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  • spirituality,  Uncategorized

    Black Bean Brownies and Grace (Redux)

    “I can resist everything but temptation.” –-Oscar Wilde  (Note: This is an older post with a brand new recipe!) Like most people, I strive to be reasonably fit. I walk religiously, eat my vegetables, and sometimes even do yoga. But I have a serious weakness, a secret yearning for what can only be called the dark side. By dark, I am speaking literally, for I find that I can resist everything but chocolate. In more youthful, disciplined days, I would nibble only on small pieces of severely dark chocolate so bitter that I felt rather saintly; but as I mellow with age, I find myself drawn back to the sweeter confections…

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  • gardening,  news media,  spiritual direction,  spirituality,  wiziq

    Two new online classes in March

    March classes I’m teaching Evaluating News Sources Whether you are wondering if the news sources flowing through your social media feeds are legitimate or you can’t decide if what you are watching and reading is the news or someone’s opinion, this class is for you. We will look at how to evaluate the trustworthiness, accuracy, and bias of a news source. In addition, we’ll look at how to separate the news from the opinion. Register for this free class HERE. Gardening as a Spiritual Discipline This class is for gardeners and people interested in becoming gardeners. We will talk about the spiritual aspects of gardening and how you can turn…

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  • spirituality,  Uncategorized

    Love All Beginnings (Even the Scary Ones) ​

    I love all beginnings, despite their anxiousness and their uncertainty, which belong to every commencement.— Rainer Maria Rilke   When I begin a new adventure—a new project, a new job, a new year—I turn for inspiration to two Bohemian adventurers: my great-grandmother Lizzie Schwartz and the poet Rainer Maria Rilke. Lizzie was born in Bohemia (now the Czech Republic) at the very same time as the poet Rilke, both starting life in the grand city of Prague.  I like to think of this:  They lived in the same city, shared the same space, the same air, the same streets.   Perhaps that is why I am so drawn to Rilke.  The…

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  • spirituality,  Uncategorized

    Defiant Joy

    We must risk delight . . . We must have the stubbornness to accept our gladness in the ruthless furnace of this world.” —Jack Gilbert CHRISTMAS is closing in on us, but my heart is not quite there.  During my morning walk in a sunlit city park, it feels more like a “mourning “ walk as I attempt to fend off dire forebodings about the future of our country, our world, our planet. The Herods of the world seem to be taking control; a black curtain is descending and joy seems like a distant memory, a faraway feeling—possibly an inappropriate expression at such a serious time.   But then, as I look…

  • spirituality,  Uncategorized

    The Sky Remains: A Meditation for Anxious Times

      Through the empty branches the sky remains. It is what you have. —Rilke,  Book of Hours   It is late November in America.  Cold winds blow across the sky mixed with tears and fears and whispers of darkness to come.  And yet, the season of thanksgiving beckons us to find a shelter of gratitude where we can offer up some imperfect gesture. Underneath a giant Cottonwood tree—a tiny yellow dot under the crisp, cloudless New Mexico sky— I stand, just a little awed.  Around me, the autumn light filters through crackling leaves into pools of warm gold. In the trauma of our time, I take refuge in this safe…

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  • spirituality,  Uncategorized

    Under the Red Hats: White Rage, Outrage, and the Quest for Empathy

    The shock, disbelief, and revulsion of seeing half our country gleefully supporting, and now electing to the presidency, a man who has spent the last year and a half spewing racist, misogynist, homophobic, Islamophobic, and jingoistic rhetoric should not completely surprise us.  Some predicted it, but we had hoped for something better.  We trusted that America’s “better angels” would prevail.  But they didn’t. Like many of you, we are mourning, we are outraged. And yes, we are afraid. We do believe that even the worst events in life can be creatively transformed, but as progressive Christians and process theologians, we do not hold that everything “happens for a reason” or…

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  • faith,  fat soul theology,  process theology,  spirituality

    Dogs, Gardens, and Fat Souls

    This morning I patiently watched my 18-year-old dog, Munchkin, make her rounds through the back garden. She moves slowly; she’s blind and deaf; and, ever since she walked straight into the garden pond late one evening, she requires supervision each time she goes outside. I have had to adjust my life to make time to wait on her as she eats, as she walks the garden, and as she checks all the important spots in the house. She also waits. She waits by her chair until I show up to pick her up and place her in it. She waits when she finds herself stuck in a corner or behind…