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Thursday, October 01, 2020

Caring for soul and spirit web series starts Oct. 6

Thomas Moore offers a four-part webinar series with SDI Workshops this month: Caring for Soul and Spirit with Thomas Moore

These 75-minute sessions are on Tuesday, October 6, 13, 20, 27 at 12:00 p.m. Pacific Time (3:00 p.m. Eastern Time).

Week 1 
Soul and spirit are two directions a meaningful life can take, two elements in our basic make-up as human beings. Spirit aims high toward perfection, future bliss, order, a sense of the cosmos, high states of contemplation and being. Soul is embedded in ordinary life and consists of intimate emotions and relationships, home, family, sexuality, the imperfect life, shadow or dark qualities, failure and loss. Soul makes us human, while spirit gives us transcendent vision. Both are necessary and valuable, and each are best when the other is present. 

Week 2
Certain religions and their figureheads demonstrate this union of soul and spirit. Jesus is surrounded by friends and family as he teaches his way of love and community. The first shall be last. Look at the lilies in the field for an example of how to be. Help your neighbor even if you have nothing in common. The Buddha recommends a Middle Way between asceticism and worldliness. The sangha or community is essential. Zen master Shunryu Suzuki suggests seeing your way as “nothing special.” Jesus’ first miraculous sign is to supply excellent wine at a wedding party. The Tao Te Ching recommends not striving. Accomplish much by doing nothing.

Week 3
In the soul psychology of James Hillman we “go with the symptom” and not against it. If you’re sad, you can go deeper into your sadness, not to indulge in it or make it worse, but to feel it and know it better, ultimately to go through it rather than beyond it. We see that our problems point to what is painful but also what is needed. If you are lonely, you may need to be creatively alone more often or be more of an individual.

Week 4
Soul is the depth of the ordinary. Your “spiritual” practice could be more ordinarily and material. Woodworking and gardening offer opportunities for contemplation. Walking is a good spiritual practice (read Thoreau’s essay on it) or making music. You can cook for friendship and sensory pleasure and not just for health or principle. Jesus was an Epicurean, loving to have his friends with him at dinner, and others, as well. A soulful life is warm and intimate, a good base for spiritual practice.

The Facilitator for this series is Frederica Helmiere, Director of Programs and Events at SDI.
CEU credits are available for participants.

Cost: $119
Discounts for SDI members.