Thursday, February 2, 2023

INTERSPIRITUAL MEDITATION -- 13

+ This is the eleventh post on Step One of InterSpiritual Meditation: MAY WE BE HAPPY AND HEALTHY

+ Oh, it has been too long since the last post. Sorry and I will try to do better. 

+ The live classes of the current InterSpiritual Meditation course are really inspiring, illuminating and informative. I am enjoying being one of the resource persons. Fellow mentor Alejandra Warden is doing a fantastic job as head teacher. And the wonderful leader of Spiritual Paths, Ed Bastian, is contributing a lot from his experience and knowledge.

+ Here are some of my current thoughts on Step One: Motivation: MAY WE BE HAPPY & HEALTHY:

· The Mandala Style of Wisdom is always my GO TO as I seek guidance, encouragement, new insights and inspiration. I am looking forward to doing more Nature Immersion this spring, summer and fall. Even right now in winter I can get out there and do the 7 steps using the guidance Jeanette Banashak provided. I am seeking to develop more compassion in all of my relationships and becoming contemplative is always necessary for that to happen. Music is so important. I will get my guitar out, tune it and sing! I will listen with more intention and attention.

· I am committing myself anew to embracing the evolutionary imperative of building a New Earth full of compassion, peace, justice and abundance for all. My health and happiness and the health and happiness of all creatures depends on this.

· Becoming more mindful has made me more aware of thoughts and actions which are healthy and thoughts and actions which are not healthy. The more I meditate, the more I become aware of addictions and habits which prevent me from becoming all I can be. For 5 decades I have often heeded the guidance of a great teacher, Ken Keyes Jr, who gave us 12 Pathways toHigher Consciousness with a focus on freeing ourselves from our addictions.

Thanks to an experience 20 years ago at The Church of Reconciliation in Chapel Hill NC I began regularly doing Centering Prayer. Allison Davidson co-led a weekly group doing Centering Prayer and Lectio Divina.

A little more than ten years ago I became committed to InterSpiritual Meditation and became an InterSpiritual Mentor certified by the Spiritual PathsInstitute. See link in Comment three.

· Nothing else could possibly provide the joy and wholeness that contemplation, meditation and prayer provide. It is a powerful process of coming into the present moment and finding Unconditional Love, Unlimited Love, Uniting Love. It is miraculous, mysterious and marvelous. I believe we all need to sooner or later get intimately, intricately, infinitely connected to the matrix of Love and Compassion which is our true identity, our only reality. And a blissful, amazing, wondrous reality it is.

+ This is one of a series of posts on InterSpiritualMeditation: A Seven Step Process created by Dr. Edward Bastian. 

In these posts I and others offer reflections on each of the steps which are:

1. Motivation: “May we be Happy and Healthy.”

2. Gratitude: “May we be Grateful for Life’s Many Gifts.”

3. Transformation: “May we be Transformed into Our Highest Being.”

4. Compassion: “May we be Loving and Compassionate.”

5. Mindfulness: “May we be Mindful through Our Breathing.”

6. Wisdom: “May we Become Wise through our Meditation.”

7. Service: “May we be in Service to All.”

+ I invite you to purchase and read Ed's wonderful books including InterSpiritual Meditation: A Seven Step Process and Mandala: Creating an Authentic Spiritual Path -- An InterSpiritual Process.

+ I invite you to join The New Faith for the New Earth Facebook Group where I and group members post and comment on InterSpiritual Wisdom & Practices as well as other topics.

Monday, January 16, 2023

INTERSPIRITUAL MEDITATION -- 12

ONE OF ED'S VIDEO INTRODUCTIONS
TO THE SEVEN STEPS OF INTERSPIRITUAL MEDITATION

+ Here is a link to a video from Contemplative Life where my friend and InterSpiritual companion Kate Sheehan-Roach interviews my friend and InterSpiritual Teacher Ed Bastian. Ed offers a great summary here of the seven steps of InterSpiritual Meditation.

+ Here is a link to Contemplative Life, a very comprehensive website with plenty of information about contemplative practices and places where you can engage in contemplative practice.

+++

+ This is a series of posts on InterSpiritual Meditation: A Seven Step Process created by Dr. Edward Bastian. I am an InterSpiritual Mentor certified by SpiritualPaths Institute which Ed established. In these posts I will offer reflections of mine and others on each of the steps which are:

1. Motivation: “May we be Happy and Healthy.”
2. Gratitude: “May we be Grateful for Life’s Many Gifts.”
3. Transformation: “May we be Transformed into Our Highest Being.”
4. Compassion:“May we be Loving and Compassionate.”
5. Mindfulness: “May we be Mindful through Our Breathing.”
6. Wisdom: “May we Become Wise through our Meditation.”
7. Service: “May we be in Service to All.”

+ I invite you to purchase and read Ed's wonderful books including InterSpiritual Meditation: A Seven Step Process and Mandala: Creating an Authentic Spiritual Path -- An InterSpiritual Process.

+ I invite you to consider taking a comprehensive e-course on InterSpiritual Meditation offered by Spiritual Paths.net. The course is always available but periodically it is taught via Zoom by Ed and other teachers as an 8-week course with group participation. Next one starts on January 18, 2023 at 7pm EST.

+ I invite you to join The New Faith for the New Earth Facebook Group where I and group members post and comment on InterSpiritual Wisdom & Practices.

Thursday, January 12, 2023

INTERSPIRITUAL MEDITATION -- 11

Tenth Post on Step One of InterSpiritual Meditation: 
May we be Happy and Healthy

Silence is God's first language;
everything else is a poor translation.
In order to hear that language,
we must learn to be still and rest in God.
-- Thomas Keating in Invitation to Love

Thomas Keating’s legacy is huge. Contemplative Outreach has been and continues to be the official organization promoting the teachings and practices of Centering Prayer and Lectio Divina which Father Keating taught and wrote about. Many of us have found his unique and creative approach to these practices particularly effective.

It was Thomas Keating who organized the annual Snowmass gatherings of meditators from many wisdom traditions.  Out of this experience, Edward Bastian started Spiritual Paths more than two decades ago. Ed created the process of InterSpiritual Meditation and A Mandala process leading people to discover their natural spiritual styles as well as the ones we may want to cultivate as we continue to make our way on our amazing journey.

We often need silence and stillness as we journey on.  Many of us simply do not get enough.  It takes commitment.  It takes practice.  It takes companionship with others committed to the practice.  Step One of the InterSpiritual Meditation process is essential because we need to be motivated again and again or we can soon neglect the whole contemplative practice which ultimately leads to an abundance of happiness and health.  Keep it up!

+++

+ This is a series of posts on InterSpiritual Meditation: A Seven Step Process created by Dr. Edward Bastian. I am an InterSpiritual Mentor certified by SpiritualPaths Institute which Ed established. In these posts I will offer reflections of mine and others on each of the steps which are: 

1. Motivation: “May we be Happy and Healthy.”
2. Gratitude: “May we be Grateful for Life’s Many Gifts.”
3. Transformation: “May we be Transformed into Our Highest Being.”
4. Compassion:“May we be Loving and Compassionate.”
5. Mindfulness: “May we be Mindful through Our Breathing.”
6. Wisdom: “May we Become Wise through our Meditation.”
7. Service: “May we be in Service to All.”

+ I invite you to purchase and read Ed's wonderful books including InterSpiritual Meditation: A Seven Step Process and Mandala: Creating an Authentic Spiritual Path -- An InterSpiritual Process.

+ I invite you to consider taking a comprehensive e-course on InterSpiritual Meditation offered by Spiritual Paths.net.  The course is always available but periodically it is taught via Zoom by Ed and other teachers as an 8-week course with group participation. Next one starts on January 18, 2023 at 7pm EST.

Thursday, January 5, 2023

INTERSPIRITUAL MEDITATION -- 10 + UPCOMING INTERSPIRITUAL MEDITATION COURSE

Here is Ed Bastian's letter inviting us to the 


Start the New Year with InterSpiritual Meditation

The 7-Step Mindfulness Practice

8-Week Course via Zoom

January 18 to March 8, 4pm Pacific

Dear ....

As we begin 2023, I invite you to join our upcoming 8-week InterSpiritual Meditation course. We aim to help you create a calm, wise, and compassionate foundation for the year ahead. This live ZOOM course runs on Wednesdays from January 18 to March 8, from 4 pm - 5:30 pm PST.

This course also meets the qualifications for 20 hours of continuing education units for LMFTs, LCSWs, LPCCs, and/or LEPs as required by the California Board of Behavioral Sciences. Click here to learn more and to register for CE Credits.

Deepening Mindfulness Meditation Through 7-Steps

ISM can be described as a “Holistic 7-Step Mindfulness Practice.” Why? Because it integrates “Mindfulness” into each the other six steps: Motivation, Gratitude, Transformation, Love, Wisdom and Service. Each of these steps are essential for a holistic and sustainable meditative practice. The integration of all these steps can have a transformative impact on all aspects of our lives.

INFORMATION & REGISTRATION

Energizing Our Spiritual Styles

Each of us embodies a unique combination of 12 styles. Our styles can help us better develop calm and compassionate insight and practice. In this course, we will learn to harness and empower our innate styles to improve our meditation through such styles as physical exercise, the arts, devotion, imagination, intellectual reason, or immersion into nature. We will explore and experience how both our dominant and dormant styles can help reinvigorate our personal meditation practices.

Community

Our busy lives often make it hard to sustain a daily meditation practice. Community support can remind us of the relevance and importance of meditation. Our work together is invigorated by diversity of race, ethnicity, beliefs, gender designations, and spiritual learning styles. We experience profound unity amidst our dynamic diversity. We experience an InterSpiritual Consciousness that immerses us into the depths of our being.

1. Motivation
“May I (We) Be Happy and Healthy.”

2. Gratitude
“May I (We) Be Grateful for Life’s Gifts”

3. Transformation
“May I (We) Be Transformed”

4. Intention
“May I (We) Be Compassionate”

5. Mindfulness
“May I (We) Breathe Mindfully ”

6. Wisdom
“May I (We) Become Wise ”

7. Service
“May I (We) Be in Service to All”

Please Join Us

Please join us in the upcoming January course on InterSpiritual Meditation. You will enjoy the conversation with fellow students along with our certified facilitators and mentors. Joining together, we will refine our meditation practice and learn to companion others on their journeys.

INFORMATION & REGISTRATION

We'd love to see you!

Ed Bastian, PhD, Founder & President of Spiritual Paths Foundation

Recommendations

"Spiritual Paths is an excellent program that grew out of the Snowmass Inter-religious Conference at St. Benedict’s Monastery. As interspiritual dialogue continues to deepen and spread, experienced spiritual practitioners, with some capacity for scholarship, need to suggest what works best for spiritual growth. This is the thrust of the Spiritual Paths conferences and educational activities." -- Father Thomas Keating, Founder, Centering Prayer

"ISM is an open-hearted and truly universal practice. If ever there was a practice to help us get spiritually unstuck, this is it.” -- Rev. Cynthia Bourgeault, Author & Teacher

"Dr. Bastian's work is a great and important breakthrough, as so many believe they are not spiritual because they do not follow a particular dogma..." -- Dr. Carol Pearson, Author and Past President of Pacifica Graduate University

"I am particularly excited by this initiative of Edward Bastian and the Spiritual Paths Foundation. It as a sea change in the evolution of what we used to call the ecumenical activity. I see us coming into the next phase of inter-religious dialogue, to introduce one another to the inner experience of each others faith traditions. For when we do, we shall come to the realization that the end is One." -- Imam Feisal Abdul-Rauf, Founder of American Sufi Muslim Association

"Spiritual Paths brings together the wisdom of authentic teachers from the worlds spiritual traditions, provides an excellent curriculum based on those traditions, and leads us toward a new paradigm of InterSpiritual education and practice." -- Rabbi Zalman Schachter, Founder of Jewish Renewal

Friday, December 30, 2022

INTERSPIRITUAL MEDITATION -- 9

Eighth Post on Step One of InterSpiritual Meditation: 
May we be Happy and Healthy

+ I hope you will find these quotes on AWE motivational and inspirational for you as you continue to be devoted to Meditation & Mindfulness, possibly using this InterSpiritual Meditation process:
        
      ·        “I think this is how we are supposed to be in the world 
            -- present and in awe.” -- Anne Lamott

·        “Awe is the finest portion of mankind. . . . In awe one feels profoundly the immense.” — Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

·        “Awe is what moves us forward.” -- Joseph Campbell

·        “Awe enables us to perceive in the world intimations of the Divine.” -- Abraham Joshua Heschel

·        “Journey through today with an eye for beauty. Notice the ordinary miracles that surround you. . . . Allow joy to surface. Be in awe.” — Mary Davis

+++++++

+ This is a series of posts on InterSpiritual Meditation: A Seven Step Process created by Dr. Edward Bastian. I am an InterSpiritual Mentor certified by SpiritualPaths Institute which Ed established. In these posts I will offer reflections of mine and others on each of the steps which are:

1. Motivation: “May we be Happy and Healthy.”
2. Gratitude: “May we be Grateful for Life’s Many Gifts.”
3. Transformation: “May we be Transformed into Our Highest Being.”
4. Compassion:“May we be Loving and Compassionate.”
5. Mindfulness: “May we be Mindful through Our Breathing.”
6. Wisdom: “May we Become Wise through our Meditation.”
7. Service: “May we be in Service to All.”

+ I invite you to purchase and read Ed's wonderful books including InterSpiritual Meditation: A Seven Step Process and Mandala: Creating an Authentic Spiritual Path -- An InterSpiritual Process.

+ I invite you to consider taking a comprehensive e-course on InterSpiritual Meditation offered by Spiritual Paths.net. The course is always available but periodically it is taught via Zoom by Ed and other teachers as an 8-week course with group participation. Next one starts on January 18, 2023 at 7pm EST.

Tuesday, December 27, 2022

INTERSPIRITUAL MEDITATION -- 8

Seventh Post on Step One of InterSpiritual Meditation: 
May we be Happy and Healthy

+ My friend and fellow InterSpiritual Mentor Anna Wolfe has written extensively in her journal on each of the seven steps and she has generously given me permission to share some of her wisdom. Here is some wonderful inspiration and illumination for Step One:

How can we be happy and healthy?
So many of the seven steps
Are interrelated,
For Happiness can come
through gratitude.
Happiness is not a constant state,
For life is full of
Ups and downs,
But one can be
Contented and grateful
For what is.
And one can live with
The attitude of hope
That the happiness will
Come again,
Even in the more difficult times -
A kind word,
A touch,
An experience of
Having done something nice
For someone else.
As for health,
Meditation can help
In so many ways –
So let’s get going!
It can help us
Transform ourselves,
Through focus and calmness,
To be our best selves.
It can affect
Our outlook,
Our relationships,
Our connections
And our happiness!
Why wouldn’t we mediate?
-- Anna Wolfe June 8, 2020

++++++++++++

+ This is a series of posts on InterSpiritual Meditation: A Seven Step Process created by Dr. Edward Bastian. I am an InterSpiritual Mentor certified by Spiritual Paths Institute which Ed established. In these posts I will offer reflections of mine and others on each of the steps which are:  

1. Motivation: “May we be Happy and Healthy.”
2. Gratitude: “May we be Grateful for Life’s Many Gifts.”
3. Transformation: “May we be Transformed into Our Highest Being.”
4. Compassion:“May we be Loving and Compassionate.”
5. Mindfulness: “May we be Mindful through Our Breathing.”
6. Wisdom: “May we Become Wise through our Meditation.”
7. Service: “May we be in Service to All.”

 + I invite you to consider taking a comprehensive e-course on InterSpiritual Meditation offered by Spiritual Paths.net.  The course is always available but periodically it is taught via Zoom by Ed and other teachers as an 8-week course with group participation. Next one starts on January 18, 2023 at 7pm EST. 

+ I invite you to read Ed’s wonderful InterSpiritual books including InterSpiritual Meditation: A Seven Step Process and Mandala: Creating an Authentic Spiritual Path – An InterSpiritual Process.

Thursday, December 15, 2022

INTERSPIRITUAL MEDITATION -- 7


Sixth Post on Step One of InterSpiritual Meditation:
May we be Happy and Healthy

+ Here is a practice I have created and I use to begin Meditating and to return to Mindfulness during the day: 

If your practice is Centering Prayer you may want to say your Sacred Word for each breath.

 Breathe Deeply (Exhale)

Breathe Fully (Inhale

Be Still (Exhale)

Be Silent (Inhale)

 +

Be Centered (Exhale)

Be Grounded (Inhale)

 +

Lighten Up (Exhale)

Loosen Up (Inhale)

 +

Let Go (Exhale)

Let God (Inhale)

 +

Celebrate (Exhale)

Enjoy (Inhale)

 +

Be Grateful (Exhale)

Be Glad All Over (Inhale)

 +

Something Wonderful is Happening (Exhale)

This is Bliss (Inhale & Exhale)

 ++++++++++++ 

+ This is a series of posts on InterSpiritual Meditation: A Seven Step Process created by Dr. Edward Bastian. I am an InterSpiritual Mentor certified by Spiritual Paths Institute which Ed established. In these posts I will offer reflections of mine and others on each of the steps which are:  

1. Motivation: “May we be Happy and Healthy.”
2. Gratitude: “May we be Grateful for Life’s Many Gifts.”
3. Transformation: “May we be Transformed into Our Highest Being.”
4. Compassion:“May we be Loving and Compassionate.”
5. Mindfulness: “May we be Mindful through Our Breathing.”
6. Wisdom: “May we Become Wise through our Meditation.”
7. Service: “May we be in Service to All.”

 + I invite you to consider taking a comprehensive e-course on InterSpiritual Meditation offered by Spiritual Paths.net.  The course is always available but periodically it is taught via Zoom by Ed and other teachers as an 8-week course with group participation. Next one starts on January 18, 2023 at 7pm EST.

 + I invite you to read Ed’s wonderful InterSpiritual books including InterSpiritual Meditation: A Seven Step Process and Mandala: Creating an Authentic Spiritual Path – An InterSpiritual Process

Monday, December 5, 2022

INTERSPIRITUAL MEDITATION -- 6

  Fifth Post on Step One of InterSpiritual Meditation:

May we be Happy and Healthy

+ The STOP technique offers a simple way to get into a meditative state of mind.  Step One is about Getting Motivated for this to happen on a regular basis. This technique might be a beneficial way to move into a period of meditation which leads to health and happiness.      

The STOP technique comes from the Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction program and is a useful and effective way to bring you back to your breath and into presence. When you are struggling with keeping presence in a difficult situation, or if you would like to explore more deeply an emotion, sensation or thought that is interfering with your meditation practice, this technique can provide a structure for support to guide you back to presence and clarity. It can be utilized anywhere and only takes a minute or two to practice.

S - Stop and take Stock

Ask yourself:

What am I experiencing right now?

What thoughts are running in your head? 

What images are coming to mind?

What feelings are you experiencing? Are the feelings angry, sad, afraid, mad, anxious, etc.

What sensations are you experiencing? Are the sensations tight, numb, hot, cold, tingling, etc.

(when identifying the feelings or sensation, keep it impersonal. Just label the feeling by itself. Do not label as "I am mad" Rather just "mad". Not "I am tense", but "tense".  Keeping "I" out of the label, keeps you from identifying with the feeling or sensation. You are not the feeling or sensation, they are just moving through you.) These observations are of what you are experiencing right at that moment.  Acknowledge and take note of your experience, even if the experience is unpleasant.

T - Take a Breath

Direct your attention to your breath. Follow your in-breath and out-breath, one after the other. Breathing is our connection to presence. Breathing doesn't happen in the past or the future, but right in the present moment. Use your breath as an anchor to help pull you in to a place of awareness and calm.

O - Open and Observe

Begin to expand your awareness around you and outside your breathing. Begin by sensing your body, your posture, your expression, your whole body. Then go further out to your surroundings, what is occurring right now? What do you see? hear? smell? Try as best as you are able to keep your attention this open awareness for a few moments.

P - Proceed

Now you are present, you are able to sense how things are right now, rather than simple react in the usual habitual manner. Observe with curiosity and opens. This pause allows space to open up so you can act or simply be in a way that promotes awareness and healing. Then you can proceed to practice sitting meditation or to what is needed at that moment.

Write the steps of the STOP technique on an index card or put it into your smart phone or tablet. Keep it available to you, especially in places where Aversion tends to strike you most often.  Refer to STOP as often as you can and eventually the process will become automatic, replacing the negative habit energy with a positive one.
 

++++++++++++

+ This is a series of posts on InterSpiritual Meditation: A Seven Step Process created by Dr. Edward Bastian. I am an InterSpiritual Mentor certified by Spiritual Paths Institute which Ed established. In these posts I will offer reflections of mine and others on each of the steps which are:  

1. Motivation: “May we be Happy and Healthy.”
2. Gratitude: “May we be Grateful for Life’s Many Gifts.”
3. Transformation: “May we be Transformed into Our Highest Being.”
4. Compassion:“May we be Loving and Compassionate.”
5. Mindfulness: “May we be Mindful through Our Breathing.”
6. Wisdom: “May we Become Wise through our Meditation.”
7. Service: “May we be in Service to All.”

 + I invite you to consider taking a comprehensive e-course on InterSpiritual Meditation offered by Spiritual Paths.net.  The course is always available but periodically it is taught via Zoom by Ed and other teachers as an 8-week course with group participation. Next one starts on January 18, 2023 at 7pm EST.

+ I invite you to read Ed’s wonderful InterSpiritual books including InterSpiritual Meditation: A Seven Step Process and Mandala: Creating an Authentic Spiritual Path – An InterSpiritual Process

INTERSPIRITUAL MEDITATION -- 5

Fourth Post on Step One of InterSpiritual Meditation:

May we be Happy and Healthy

 + Here is an excerpt from a Joseph Naft Inner Frontier page on the practice of Joy:

 The simplest, most ordinary moments can reveal the spirited glow of a joyous world unbound. As our presence deepens, the veils of our perception grow translucent even before they dissolve altogether in our maturing soul. The consuming fire of total-hearted prayer and the hidden worlds of meditation bear unimaginable joy, surpassing all material pleasures. From those points of entry, joy works its way into the fabric of our life.

Joseph Naft has been a major source of wisdom and powerful spiritual practices over the years with his books and his ongoing Inner Work posts which come out every week or 2. We all need teachers that inspire, illumine and inform. We increase our commitment to a life-long process of healing, meaning and deep joy as we find these teachers and go deeper into contemplation, meditation and prayer which, more than anything else, leads to true peace and compassion.

Who are your teachers who motivate you and lead you to personal and global transformation?

++++++++++++

+ This is a series of posts on InterSpiritual Meditation: A Seven Step Process created by Dr. Edward Bastian. I am an InterSpiritual Mentor certified by Spiritual Paths Institute which Ed established. In these posts I will offer reflections of mine and others on each of the steps which are:  

1. Motivation: “May we be Happy and Healthy.”
2. Gratitude: “May we be Grateful for Life’s Many Gifts.”
3. Transformation: “May we be Transformed into Our Highest Being.”
4. Compassion:“May we be Loving and Compassionate.”
5. Mindfulness: “May we be Mindful through Our Breathing.”
6. Wisdom: “May we Become Wise through our Meditation.”
7. Service: “May we be in Service to All.”

 + I invite you to consider taking a comprehensive e-course on InterSpiritual Meditation offered by Spiritual Paths.net.  The course is always available but periodically it is taught via Zoom by Ed and other teachers as an 8-week course with group participation. Next one starts on January 18, 2023 at 7pm EST.

+ I invite you to read Ed’s wonderful InterSpiritual books including InterSpiritual Meditation: A Seven Step Process and Mandala: Creating an Authentic Spiritual Path – An InterSpiritual Process

Sunday, November 20, 2022

INTERSPIRITUAL MEDITATION -- 4

 Third Post on Step One of InterSpiritual Meditation: 

May we be Happy and Healthy 

Sacred light pervades
Me through and through,
And bliss descends
Like mountain dew.
– Ed Bastian’s third verse for Step 6

You do not need to do anything;
you do not need to leave your room.
Remain sitting at your table and listen.
You do not even need to listen; just wait.
You do not even need to wait;
just become still, quiet and solitary
and the world will freely offer itself to you to be unmasked.
It has no choice. It will roll in ecstasy at your feet.
-- Franz Kafka

+ I have loved this quote by Franz Kafka for a long time. I think it is very motivational and the guidance definitely leads to a plenitude of health and happiness.  Be still, silent and solitary and watch as “bliss descends like mountain dew.”    

+ This is a series of posts on InterSpiritual Meditation: A Seven Step Process created by Dr. Edward Bastian. I am an InterSpiritual Mentor certified by Spiritual Paths Institute which Ed established. In these posts I will offer reflections of mine and others on each of the steps which are:  

1. Motivation: “May we be Happy and Healthy.”
2. Gratitude: “May we be Grateful for Life’s Many Gifts.”
3. Transformation: “May we be Transformed into Our Highest Being.”
4. Compassion:“May we be Loving and Compassionate.”
5. Mindfulness: “May we be Mindful through Our Breathing.”
6. Wisdom: “May we Become Wise through our Meditation.”
7. Service: “May we be in Service to All.”

+ I invite you to consider taking a comprehensive e-course on InterSpiritual Meditation offered by Spiritual Paths.net.  The course is always available but periodically it is taught via Zoom by Ed and other teachers as an 8-week course with group participation. Next one starts on January 18, 2023 at 7pm EST.

+ I invite you to  read Ed’s wonderful InterSpiritual books including InterSpiritual Meditation: A Seven Step Process and Mandala: Creating an Authentic Spiritual Path – An InterSpiritual Process

Friday, November 18, 2022

INTERSPIRITUAL MEDITATION -- 3

Second Post on Step One of InterSpiritual Meditation: 
May we be Happy and Healthy

May all beings learn how to nourish themselves with joy each day. — Thich Nhat Hanh

This nourishment is found only in deep meditation, contemplation and prayer. Step One is all about motivation. The desire for Health and Happiness can motivate us to strive for that deep contentment, delight and well-being but there is no guarantee that this will happen. Believe me, I know. At times I am aware that genuine health and happiness is as elusive to me as it ever has been. That's because I always need to begin again in this moment ... now. So, in any moment of deep meditation, contemplation and prayer I am genuinely happy and healthy. Otherwise I am not. Now is the time to contemplate, meditate and pray. Not later. Now. Be mindful Now. Pray unceasingly Now. I'm working on it. It's deeply mystical. The work is worth it because of the amazing joy we can experience in this practice.

And I will give Herman Hesse the last word: Within you there is a stillness and a sanctuary to which you can retreat at any time and be yourself.

++++++++++++

+ This is a series of posts on InterSpiritual Meditation: A Seven Step Process created by Dr. Edward Bastian. I am an InterSpiritual Mentor certified by SpiritualPaths Institute which Ed established. In these posts I will offer reflections of mine and others on each of the steps which are: 

1.      Motivation: “May we be Happy and Healthy.”

2.      Gratitude: “May we be Grateful for Life’s Many Gifts.”

3.      Transformation: “May we be Transformed into Our Highest Being.”

4.      Compassion:“May we be Loving and Compassionate.”

5.      Mindfulness: “May we be Mindful through Our Breathing.”

6.      Wisdom: “May we Become Wise through our Meditation.”

7.      Service: “May we be in Service to All.”

+ I invite you to purchase and read Ed's wonderful books including InterSpiritual Meditation: A Seven Step Process and Mandala: Creating an Authentic Spiritual Path -- An InterSpiritual Process.  

+ I invite you to consider taking a comprehensive e-course on InterSpiritual Meditation offered by Spiritual Paths.net.  The course is always available but periodically it is taught via Zoom by Ed and other teachers as an 8-week course with group participation.

Wednesday, November 16, 2022

INTERSPIRITUAL MEDITATION -- 2

INTERSPIRITUAL MEDITATION: STEP ONE

+ Here is some of what Edward Bastian offers for Step One:

STEP ONE: MOTIVATION: May I Become Happy and Healthy

Physical, mental, and spiritual health are intertwined, and meditation fosters their good health and happiness. We begin meditating with confidence that it will help us to heal the innermost causes of illness and suffering. We pray that InterSpiritual consciousness will help heal all beings.

Ed wrote verses for each of the seven steps. Here are the verses for Step 1:

In all the world
I cannot find
The source of peace
Outside my mind.

Neither play, nor drink,
Nor sex, nor food,
Can cause a constant
Blissful mood.

The things I see,
Touch, smell, taste, hear,
Cause both joy and pain,
Hope and fear.

Meditation relieves
my mind of stress,
Leading me to health
And happiness.

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+ This is a series of posts on InterSpiritual Meditation: A Seven Step Process created by Dr. Edward Bastian. I am an InterSpiritual Mentor certified by SpiritualPaths Institute which Ed established. In these posts I will offer reflections of mine and others on each of the steps which are: 

1.      Motivation: “May we be Happy and Healthy.”

2.      Gratitude: “May we be Grateful for Life’s Many Gifts.”

3.      Transformation: “May we be Transformed into Our Highest Being.”

4.      Compassion:“May we be Loving and Compassionate.”

5.      Mindfulness: “May we be Mindful through Our Breathing.”

6.      Wisdom: “May we Become Wise through our Meditation.”

7.      Service: “May we be in Service to All.”

+ I invite you to purchase and read Ed's wonderful books including InterSpiritual Meditation: A Seven Step Process and Mandala: Creating an Authentic Spiritual Path -- An InterSpiritual Process.  

+ I invite you to consider taking a comprehensive e-course on InterSpiritual Meditation offered by Spiritual Paths.net.  The course is always available but periodically it is taught via Zoom by Ed and other teachers as an 8-week course with group participation.

Friday, November 4, 2022

INTERSPIRITUAL MEDITATION -- 1

 WE NEED TO CHOOSE HOPE

+ My friend Mark Davidson, a fellow Presbyterian Minister, says that Hannah Arendt speaks his mind in this quote: 

"The result of a consistent and total substitution of lies for factual truth is not that the lies will now be accepted as truth and the truth be defamed as lies, but that the sense by which we take our bearings in the real world - and the category of truth vs. falsehood is among the mental means to this end - is being destroyed."

+ I know this is true and we are in serious jeopardy but I do want to offer hope and even joy in the situation we are in. I do believe a critical mass of humanity has already figured out that we need to evolve rapidly into a new InterSpiritual consciousness, The New Faith for the New Earth -- #tnfftne -- and we are doing so even as we see the resistance to the truth these days. I often go back to the wisdom Brother Wayne Teasdale, who coined the term InterSpiritual, offered including this quote:

Humanity stands at a crossroads between horror and hope. In choosing hope, we must seed a new consciousness, a radically fresh approach to life drawing its inspiration from perennial spiritual and moral insights, intuition and experience. We call this new awareness interspiritual, implying not the homogenization of religion, but the recovering of the shared mystic heart beating in the center of the world’s deepest spiritual traditions.

My longtime InterSpiritual teacher, Ed Bastian, developed the Seven Steps of InterSpiritual Meditation as a way forward in this quest for "the rediscovery of the shared mystic heart."

I intend to focus on these seven steps in in these InterSpiritual Meditation posts because I simply can't think of anything more important than unceasing prayer and this process works to bring people together in meditation, contemplation and prayer from all the different wisdom traditions.

Here is how Ed introduces us to the Seven Steps:

The purposes of InterSpiritual Meditation are:

1. to help each of us to develop and sustain a comprehensive, satisfying, and sustainable process of meditation.

2. to help us co-create contemplative communities for people of diverse faiths and meditative practices. InterSpiritual Meditation is designed to provide a process around which meditators of diverse practices can build community.

3. to model a profound process for people of various religious traditions, and those without a tradition, to join together to create peace and to solve the critical challenges of our times.

The seven steps are:

(1) Motivation (May I be Healthy and Happy)

(2) Gratitude (May I be Grateful)

(3) Transformation (May I be Transformed in my Highest Ideals)

(4) Intention (May I be Loving and Compassionate)

(5) Mindfulness (May I be Mindful through my Breathing)

(6) Meditation (May I become Wise through my Meditation)

(7) Dedication (May I be in Service to All Beings)

SEVEN-STEP PROCESS – BRIEF DESCRIPTION

This contemplative process can be shared by people from many perspectives and traditions. It can be practiced alone and in community with others. It pulls together key elements of contemplation and meditation shared by many traditions. Quietly, each in our own way, we join in the following seven stages together. The sound of a bell leads us from one stage to the next.

Monday, September 5, 2022

OUR AMAZING JOURNEY -- 26


+ I am continuing to offer quotes and resources I have collected on many topics. In this post I offer some of the quotes and resources I have collected on TRANSFORMATION.  I hope these can assist you in finding more inspiration and illumination for your amazing journey.  Since I have collected a lot of quotes and resources on this topic there will be more OAJ posts soon on Transformation. 


Spirit wants to pour itself forth in our lives.

That is its nature.

It moves into expression whenever and wherever there is an opening.

Ready?

—Ellen Grace O'Brian

 

Don't ask yourself what the world needs.

Ask yourself what makes you come alive and then go do that.

Because what the world needs is people who have come alive.

– Howard Thurman

 

Solitude is the furnace of transformation. Without solitude we remain victims of society and continue to be entangled in the illusions of the false self.

– Henri Nouwen

 

I followed my passion and was guided by the light inside of me.

That light does not belong to me alone.

It is innate in all of us. Everyone has it.

But more often than not, we choose not to see it.

-- Lily Yeh

 

You have to find your own path.  . . .

But the test of that path is always:

Am I becoming kinder?

Am I becoming more sensitive to other people?

Am I becoming more compassionate?

Am I becoming more responsible?

  Ariel Burger

 

We create transformative, resilient new realities

by becoming transformed, resilient people.

-- Krista Tippett

 

All things are possible through the openness of our mind,

the gentleness of our spirit,

and the act of understanding and embracing.

-- Lily Yeh

 

We alive at this time are the luckiest people who have ever lived

— and the ones facing the wildest, most terrifying challenges.

This is not just a “deep paradox,”

it’s an existential invitation to keep waking up, right now.

-- Terry Patten

 

. . . real religion is the transformation of anxiety into laughter.

— Alan Watts

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A FEW RESOURCES 

·        S&P Practice of Transformation | Quotes | Books | Book Excerpts | Gallery

·        S&P Search for Transformation | Quotes | Books

·        CAC Search for Transformation

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+ If you join THE NEW FAITH FOR THE NEW EARTH facebook group you can easily offer and read posts and comments > https://www.facebook.com/groups/567789840446209

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Wednesday, August 24, 2022

OUR AMAZING JOURNEY -- 25

+ For a while I am offering quotes and resources I have been collecting for many years.  Here are a few on ATTENTION: 


Something very deep and mysterious, very holy and sacred,

 is taking place in our lives right where we are,

and the more attentive we become

the more we will begin to see and hear it.

-- Henri Nouwen

 

Attention is the doorway to gratitude,

the doorway to wonder,

the doorway to reciprocity.

— Robin Wall Kimmerer

 

 The moment one gives close attention to anything,

even a blade of grass,

it becomes a mysterious, awesome,

indescribably magnificent world in itself.

— Henry Miller

 

The quality of one's life depends on the quality of attention.

Whatever you pay attention to will grow more important in your life.

--Deepak Chopra

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 + Spirituality and Practice offers plenty of resources on 

the practice of Attention and a photo and quotes gallery.

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+ If you join THE NEW FAITH FOR THE NEW EARTH facebook group you can easily offer and read posts and comments > https://www.facebook.com/groups/567789840446209

Saturday, August 20, 2022

OUR AMAZING JOURNEY -- 24


+ I have collected a huge amount of quotes on many topics and that's what I am offering in these OAJ posts for a while.  These are some of the quotes I have collected on GRATITUDE:


Gratitude is a celebration of love.

-- Br. David Steindl-Rast


Gratitude makes sense of our past, brings peace for today, and creates a vision for tomorrow.

-– Melody Beattie 


Gratitude is like breathing in

 – letting ourselves be touched by the goodness in others and in our world.

Generosity is like breathing out

– sensing our mutual belonging and offering our care.

— Tara Brach


 The whole person is involved when we give thanks from our hearts.

-- Br. David Steindl-Rast


 Gratitude is the capacity

to stare doubt, loss, chaos and despair right in the eye

 and say, ‘I am still here.’

-- Diana Butler Bass


 Gratitude is happiness doubled by wonder.

-- G.K. Chesterton 


Grateful hearts truly love.

Grateful hands reach out.

Grateful eyes see generations.

Grateful minds imagine big ideas like justice, peace, and health.

Our world needs no less than grateful living.

-- Katie Steedly Curling


It is enough to be grateful for the next breath.

-- Br. David Steindl-Rast


There is a calmness to a life lived in gratitude, a quiet joy.

 -- Ralph H. Blum


Grateful living is important in the world

because in our constant pursuit of more and better

we can easily lose sight of the riches

that lay right in front of us and within us.

-- Guri Mehta


Celebrating what we hope for together is better

than fighting over what we believe separately.

-- Steven Charleston


The more you become a connoisseur of gratitude, the less you are a victim of resentment, depression, and despair. Gratitude will act as an elixir that will gradually dissolve the hard shell of your ego—your need to possess and control—and transform you into a generous being. The sense of gratitude produces true spiritual alchemy, makes us magnanimous— large souled. 

—Sam Keen


It’s morning, and again I am that lucky person who is in it.

— Mary Oliver


Today, let us swim wildly, joyously in gratitude.

— Rumi


Love wholeheartedly, be surprised, give thanks and praise

– then you will discover the fullness of your life.

-- Br. David Steindl-Rast 


There's a self expansive aspect of gratitude.

 Very possibly it's a little known law of nature:

 the more gratitude you have, the more you have to be grateful for.

-- Elaine St. James 


Happiness is not what makes us grateful. It is gratefulness that makes us happy.

 -- Br. David Steindl-Rast


 Gratitude celebrates life with a joyful "yes"

at every knot of the great network

in which everything is connected to everything.

-- Br. David Steindl-Rast 


Gratitude arises when we bring an open and full presence to our life,

 and its sweetness is a feeling of homecoming.

 -- Tara Brach 


It’s so much easier, to learn to love what you have instead of yearning always for what you’re missing, or what you imagine you’re missing. It’s so much more peaceful. 

-- Anna Quindlen


O Great Love, thank you for living and loving in us and through us.

May all that we do flow from our deep connection with you and all beings.

Help us become a community that vulnerably shares each other’s burdens and the weight of glory.

Listen to our hearts’ longings for the healing of our world.

[Please add your own intentions.]

Knowing you are hearing us better than we are speaking,

we offer these prayers in all the holy names of God, Amen.

-- A Daily Prayer of the Center for Action and Contemplation Community


Your lamp was lit from another lamp. All God wants is your gratitude for that.

 — Rumi


Looking behind I am filled with gratitude.

Looking forward I am filled with vision.

Looking upwards I am filled with strength.

Looking within I discover peace.

-- Quero Apache Prayer


When we deepen our awareness of the simple truth

 that we are here through the creativity of the stars,

we begin to feel fresh gratitude..

.what a stupendous mystery!

 -- Brian Swimme


Our approach to gratefulness has to be big enough to embrace all the difficulties of the world.

--  Brother David Steindl-Rast


Gratefulness opens me up to receive the flow of blessing

and connects me with the source of that flow.

-- Rabbi Shefa Gold


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Here are links to resources on GRATITUDE offered by Spirituality & Practice

S&P Practice of Gratitude | Quotes | Books | Book ExcerptsGallery

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+ If you join THE NEW FAITH FOR THE NEW EARTH facebook group you can easily offer and read posts and comments > https://www.facebook.com/groups/567789840446209

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