Package A includes the following Recordings from the SDI Engage 2022 Conference:
Mirabai is an award-winning author of creative nonfiction and contemporary translations of sacred literature. She taught Philosophy and World Religions at the University of New Mexico-Taos for 20 years and now teaches and speaks internationally on contemplative practice and interspiritual dialogue. A certified bereavement counselor, Mirabai helps mourners harness the transformational power of loss. Her latest book, Wild Mercy: Living the Fierce & Tender Wisdom of the Women Mystics, was named one of the “Best Books of 2019” by Spirituality & Practice.
Beverly Lanzetta, Ph.D. is a theologian, contemplative scholar and teacher, and the author of books on emerging global spirituality and new monasticism, including A New Silence: Spiritual Practices and Formation for the Monk Within and Foundations in Spiritual Direction. A monk of peace, she is dedicated to a vision of theological openness and spiritual nonviolence. Dr. Lanzetta has taught theology at Villanova University, Prescott College, and Grinnell College and has started a number of religious and monastic initiatives including the Desert Interfaith Church, Interfaith Theological Seminary, Hesychia School of Spiritual Direction, and the Community of a New Monastic Way.
Trauma-Informed Spiritual Direction: Restoring the Somatically Sacred
Shannon Michael Pater, M.A.R., M.Div., Psy.D., E-RYT 500, leds this workshop. He is a trauma-informed spiritual director and restorative yoga teacher in private practice for 15 years; he is a graduate of Hesychia School of Spiritual Direction. In 2019, after serving for 10 years as the senior minister of Central UCC, Atlanta, he sold, donated, or gave away “everything that owned him” and left the US to live in India while traveling in Nepal and Sri Lanka. Halted by the pandemic in 2020, for 18 months he lived in McLeod Ganj, a village in the Himalayas of northern India and the home-in-exile of H.H. the Dalai Lama. His practice is informed by ancient Wisdom Traditions and modern neuroscience. His soul is deeply nourished by the poetry of Mary Oliver and the companionship of street dogs. For more about him and his practice: www.noticethejourney.com.
Companioning the Body with Sarah Cledwyn
What is happening in your body? Is this a question you explore when you hold space for another? What would happen if you entered a time of companionship assuming your bodies are allies in this transformative work? In this workshop we will bring the body into spiritual companioning. We will explore several techniques for bringing embodied awareness and exploration into a companioning session. While spending an hour in quiet conversation can be transformative and wonderful, companioning the body directly gives access to places our thinking and conversation cannot reach by themselves. Participants will directly experience and practice these techniques for the ability to apply them immediately to their own spiritual practice and their companioning sessions. This workshop will be highly interactive as we learn and practice ways to listen with and to the body.
Engaging Chronic Stress: Spiritual Companionship and Nervous System Resilience with Lily Oster
In a moment when personal, communal, and global trauma can be experienced simultaneously and ongoingly, chronic stress can lead to debilitation of body, mind, and spirit. As a respite, spiritual companionship that is attuned to nervous system regulation can provide grounding, solace, and healing. This workshop explores how spiritual companions can provide trauma-informed spiritual care that promotes nervous system recovery, resilience, and even healing from chronic physical and mental suffering. Religious and spiritual perspectives on solace, faith, wholeness, and liberation can deepen and intertwine with the emerging arts and sciences of mind-body healing. This orientation toward possibility and imagining alternative futures offers healing tools for individuals as well as communities—instilling a transformative consciousness that supports both personal recovery and communal-ecosystemic health.
Song and Silence: Sung Prayer as a Practice for Deep Listening with Simon de Voil
Singing is an act of creation that invites us to listen with our whole selves. We often think of singing as expressive and outward focused—closer to speaking than listening. But the skilled musician is always listening, resting in the pause, the breath, and through that listening finds a hidden meaning inside the music. Chant and song come alive when you listen to what’s within the music—just as we can become enlivened, body and soul, through the practice of listening with song. In this participatory workshop, we’ll explore these ideas and use the song Canticle of Creation from St. Francis of Assisi to experiment with a practice of song and listening. Canticle is a hymn to creation, one that celebrates the natural world and our place within it. No training or experience required—we’ll simply experience singing and listening our way into the heart of the sacred.
Challenging Your Inner Shadow to a Duel with Ceceley Chambers
Many of us struggle with an inner voice that tells us we are not good enough, we are not worthy, we are not beloved. That negative voice can be especially challenging for students, seminarians, or those in vocational discernment because it can keep them from fulfilling their calling. There are many loving, peaceful ways to address this voice… but what if they don’t work? What if what a person really needs to do is challenge that voice to a duel? One way to deep healing might be in the catharsis of an epic battle with that voice and then a ritual to disperse or transform it. This interactive workshop will explore the technique of taking on the role of companion referee to guide a person to kick that negative inner voice’s backside and then work on healing from the fight. Warning: this workshop will contain righteous anger and reverent humor.
Decolonizing the Spiritual Direction Space – With Cindy Lee
For BIPOC directors and directees, the history and lasting impact of colonialism, slavery, and genocide is inherently brought into the spiritual direction space whether recognized or not. Therefore, this workshop will guide spiritual directors on how to recognize the power dynamics in the room and how it affects the practice of spiritual direction. This workshop uses the lens of hospitality and imagination for facilitating spiritual direction with BIPOC directees. Through imaginative practices we will discuss practical ways of decolonizing the spiritual direction space.