"In each new era of human history, the sacred work of being human requires that we begin again and, taking into account human history thus far, repose our spiritual questions within the light of current knowledge, beliefs, and lived experience. We then allow our spiritual questions to work through us to completion. In so doing, we discover responses that hold true within a given framework of understanding reality."
“The human heart is full of longing. We long to discover who we are. The voices of longing keep our lives alert and urgent. Yet if we cannot discover a shelter of belonging within our lives, we could become a victim and target of our longing.” —Christian Celtic poet and philosopher John O’Donohue
This article is offered in the knowledge that it sits within a particular framework of understanding: a spiritual but not religious Western mindset, drawing from a worldview of conscious evolution grounded in the emerging tradition of evolutionary spirituality.
Denise McGuiness, Sue Magrath, and Tom Albin
Lacy Finn Borgo
John Brown did not end slavery in the United States, but his death kick-started a war that did. Some true purpose awaits each of us. We are the luckiest people in the world.
Patricia Said Adams
Writing to parents in The Prophet, Kahlil Gibran spoke these words: “You are the bows from which your children as living arrows are sent forth. / The archer sees the mark upon the path of the infinite, and He bends you with His might that His arrows may go swift and far” (18). An arrow flies through the air in a trajectory, an arc that eventually loses steam and falls to earth. If we think of our lives as a trajectory, a bearing, an orientation, or a path, and the archer as God, then we can begin to make sense of our lives spiritually.
edited by Ineda P. Adesanya
Reviewed by Wendy Farley
edited by Tirzah Firestone
Reviewed by Karen Erlichman
by Brian Thomas Swimme
Reviewed by Marcia Wakeland
by Robert E. Alvis
Reviewed by Kathryn Madden, rc
by Ilia Delio, OSF
Reviewed by Donna Erickson Couch
by Christine Valters Paintner
Reviewed by Stephanie Bussey-Spencer Patton
by Ellen Birx
Reviewed by Kate Clark
by Westina Matthews
Reviewed by Greg Richardson
by Christopher Kerr, MD, PhD, with Carine Mardorossian, PhD
Reviewed by Linda Douty
Publisher: Spiritual Directors International
Executive Director: Rev. Seifu Anil Singh-Molares, MTS
Editor: Nick Wagner
Media Review Editor: Pegge Erkeneff
Art Editor: Matt Whitney
Graphic Designer: Tobias Becker
Founding Editor: Susan S. Jorgensen, MA
Poetry Editor: Jennifer (Jinks) Hoffmann
Presence: An International Journal of Spiritual Direction is published in March, June, September, and December. Presence offers a forum among diverse people and spiritual traditions for the exploration of present and future trends in the art and ministry of spiritual direction. Presence is grounded in the belief that our deepest calling is to be present to one another as we share the gift of ourselves. Presence strives to articulate the essential elements of contemplative practices, formation, and training; to encourage accountability; and to develop clear ethical guidelines. Presence supports a global contemplative dialog of spiritual care and compassion for others, ourselves, and the whole cosmos. ISSN 1081-7662.
Opinions expressed in this journal are the opinions of the authors and advertisers and may not represent the opinions of Spiritual Directors International, the coordinating council, or the editors. All biblical quotations are from the NRSV unless otherwise noted.