Spiritual direction — seeking a ‘new normal’ during a global pandemic

Since I started spiritual direction a couple of years ago, I've emailed my spiritual director ahead of our monthly sessions ... summing up what I've been journaling about since our last meeting and, more to the point, getting a little focus on themes I've been working on and, more to the point, new directions that … Continue reading Spiritual direction — seeking a ‘new normal’ during a global pandemic

Jack Kornfield on gratitude, mindfulness, adversity (outtakes, links and quotes)

Outtakes from a post on daily practice I finished today. The final draft took a slightly different direction, but I'm copying this part of the draft here because I want to hang onto the links to Jack Kornfield here ... what he says about gratitude is so similar to the examen of St. Ignatius of … Continue reading Jack Kornfield on gratitude, mindfulness, adversity (outtakes, links and quotes)

Brother Richard’s “Lockdown,” a Zen moment in this time of coronavirus

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9x25DwatvjA&t=51s MBPPC Backyard Preacher | Mt. Baker Park Presbyterian Church, Seattle | March 17, 2020 Anderson Cooper closed the CNN News town hall he co-hosted tonight with Dr. Sanjay Gupta by reading a poem by Brother Richard Hendrick, OSF (Capuchin), of County Donegal in Ireland. It's titled "Lockdown"; it has been widely circulated on the … Continue reading Brother Richard’s “Lockdown,” a Zen moment in this time of coronavirus

Haiku from our campus literary magazine at SCI-Benedictine a month after 9/11

When I taught English and journalism at Springfield College in Illinois, I wrote workshop poems along with my creative writing students. One of the forms we experimented with was "found poetry." The Academy of American Poets explains, "Found poems take existing texts and refashion them, reorder them, and present them as poems. The literary equivalent … Continue reading Haiku from our campus literary magazine at SCI-Benedictine a month after 9/11

Zen COPD: A harmonica on the nightstand and a promise to turn over a new leaf

Here's something that got my attention! (I'll copy-and-paste excerpts below.) But, first, what's it doing on a spiritual direction blog? It's an article about a guy who "has used the harmonica to help breathing patterns in adults with problems such as Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disorder." Interesting, eh? Especially if you’ve got COPD. But whatever else … Continue reading Zen COPD: A harmonica on the nightstand and a promise to turn over a new leaf

Luther and the cypress tree in the courtyard: How picking a new URL led me to seek refuge in a Zen koan

Courtyard at SCI-Benedictine: Cypress tree was at left, just out of picture. Like so many of the good things in life, it happened pretty much by accident. But there was an underlying logic to it. Well, maybe "logic" isn't the right word here. We're not talking about a logical syllogism as much as, oh, maybe … Continue reading Luther and the cypress tree in the courtyard: How picking a new URL led me to seek refuge in a Zen koan

Mindfulness: Notes on a Zen breakout session at an ELCA synod meeting

I like the way this guy operates. He's Travis Fitzgold, a Lutheran pastor and director of the Zen Learning Project (ZLP), a spiritual practice community in Austin. Texas, and he helped me figure out what this blog is about (even though I've never met him and I'm sure he's never read it). You might even … Continue reading Mindfulness: Notes on a Zen breakout session at an ELCA synod meeting