Spiritual Discussion Series Continues
WALPOLE, N.H. – Every other Tuesday, we meet at Hastings Parish House from 10:30 to Noon for conversation about an “On Being” program website interview that we have listened to in the week preceding via website or podcast.
Following our discussions, we enjoy lunch together at noon (bring your own). Members of the wider community are welcome. Come for one conversation or come for all.
“Her Deepness” Sylvia Earle
Oceanographer Sylvia Earle was the first person to walk solo on the bottom of the sea, under a quarter mile of water. She has watched humanity’s enduring fascination with “outer space” while she has delighted in “inner space” — the alien and increasingly endangered worlds beneath earth’s waters. These frontiers, as Sylvia Earle points out, are our very life-support system.
“The Bible, Poetry, and Active Imagination” Eugene Peterson
“Prayers are tools not for doing or getting but for being and becoming.” These are words of the legendary pastor and writer Eugene Peterson....Frustrated with the unimaginative way he found his congregants treating their Bibles, he translated it himself, and that translation has sold millions of copies around the world. Eugene Peterson’s down-to-earth faith hinges on a love of metaphor and a commitment to the Bible’s poetry.
“Soul Food, Sex, and Space” Nikki Giovanni
In the 1960s, Nikki Giovanni was a revolutionary poet of the Black Arts Movement that nourished civil rights. She had a famous dialogue with James Baldwin in Paris in 1971. As a professor at Virginia Tech, she brought beauty and courage by the way of poetry after the shooting there. Today, she is a self-proclaimed space freak and a delighted elder — an adored voice to hip-hop artists and the new forms of social change this generation is creating.
“Silence and the Presence of Everything” Gordon Hempton
Silence is an endangered species, says Gordon Hempton. He defines real quiet as presence – not an absence of sound, but an absence of noise. The Earth, as he knows it, is a “solar-powered jukebox.” Quiet is a “think tank of the soul.” We take in the world through his ears.
“Buoyancy Rather Than Burnout in Our Lives” Joan Halifax
It’s easy to despair at all the bad news and horrific pictures that come at us daily. But Roshi Joan Halifax says this is a form of empathy that works against us. There’s such a thing as pathological altruism. This Zen abbot and medical anthropologist has nourishing wisdom as we face suffering in the world.
“Anatomy of Gratitude” David Steindl-Rast
Br. David Steindl-Rast...speaks of the anatomy and practice of gratitude as full-blooded, reality-based, and redeeming. Now in his 90s, he has lived through a world war, the end of an empire, and the fascist takeover of his country. He was an early pioneer...of dialogue between Christian and Buddhist monastics. He speaks on the subject of gratitude — a practice increasingly interrogated by scientists and physicians as a key to human well-being.