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Are you spiritually fluent?
The art and contemplative practice of spiritual companionship is broad.
Throughout human history and around the world, individuals have accompanied others along their spiritual journeys, seeking the Mystery that goes by many names. Spiritual companionship expresses itself today in robust varieties across major religious traditions and other spiritual modalities.
Join SDI for a SELF-PACED online course of spiritual companionship’s expression in various authentic forms: Judaism, Buddhism, Indigenous traditions, Christianity, Hinduism, Islam, Sikhism, contemporary Shamanism, eco-spiritualies, and more — guided by the very best in the field offering their expertise and personal experiences.
This course is for spiritual companions eager to broaden their understanding and practice beyond a single tradition or approach. It is for anyone who is considering becoming a spiritual companion and seeks an inclusive pluralistic introduction to the craft. And it is for anyone who is curious about what spiritual companionship is in our pluralistic modern world.
Spiritual Companionship For Our Times Calls For Spiritual Fluency Across Faith Traditions
This fluency allows us to understand and appreciate the richness of companionship practices in different contexts, and it also helps us root more deeply in our own tradition(s). Think of each section of this class as a sampling of another language: some new vocabulary, different syntax, a way to structure sentences that you’re not used to. Imagine how knowing another language, even a bit, then enhances your own native tongue. You might express yourself with a bit more nuance, or pull in a word from another language that captures a thought or feeling just right. Spiritual fluency helps us all to “speak” our faith, and companion others along their faith journey, with enhanced finesse and appreciation.
Come sample ten different spiritual “languages” uttered by some of their very best speakers!
There Are So Many Online Courses. Why This One?
Learn at your own pace. Review course material when the mood comes to you.
Imam Jamal Rahman
Jamal Rahman is a popular speaker on Islam, Sufi spirituality, and interfaith relations. Along with his Interfaith Amigos, he has been featured in the New York Times, CBS News, BBC, and various NPR programs. Jamal is co-founder and Muslim Sufi minister at Interfaith Community Sanctuary and adjunct faculty at Seattle University. He is a former co-host of Interfaith Talk Radio and travels nationally and internationally, presenting at retreats and workshops.
Rev. Seifu Anil Singh-Molares
Rev. Seifu is the Executive Director of SDI and an ordained Zen Buddhist priest, as well as a practicing spiritual director/companion and motivational speaker. He is a veteran of numerous interfaith and interspiritual efforts over the years, including Seeds of Compassion in Seattle in 2008, where he was one of the chairs, and as founder and executive director of the Compassionate Action Network. He has a Master’s in Theological Studies from Harvard University.
Rev. Seifu is an accomplished speaker and university lecturer and is a key contributor for the Woodrow Wilson National Fellowship Foundation. In a previous life, he was also an executive at Microsoft, where he successfully grew international groups and divisions and provided leadership to multi-cultural teams around the world.
Rabbi Amy Eilberg
Rabbi Amy Eilberg is the first woman ordained as a Conservative rabbi by the Jewish Theological Seminary of America. She serves as a spiritual director, kindness coach, and peace and justice educator. She recently served as the Coordinator of Jewish Engagement for Faith in Action Bay Area, a multi-faith, multi-racial social justice organization in the San Francisco Bay Area. Prior to that she served as the director of the Pardes Rodef Shalom (Pursuer of Peace) Communities Program, teaching Jewish civil discourse to rabbis, synagogues and Jewish organizations. Her book, From Enemy to Friend: Jewish Wisdom and the Pursuit of Peace, was published by Orbis Books in March 2014. She is a devoted wife, loving mother to three wonderful grown children, and wildly enthusiastic grandmother to baby Adin.
Mary DeJong is a deep ecologist, ecotheologian, urban naturalist, and practitioner and guide of place-based pilgrimage. She specializes in the spiritual companionship of “rewilding.” Mary facilitates retreats and pilgrimages in the Pacific Northwest and in Iona, Scotland that strengthen the unique and mystical interconnection of participants, the sacred, and the natural world. She has studied and practiced within the Celtic Christian spiritual tradition, her own maternal line heritage, for over twenty years, and is influenced by the lives of Celtic saints, Jospeh Campbell’s The Hero’s Journey and the emerging field of ecopyschology. Mary’s theoretical and praxis focus within deep ecology, ecotheology, ecopsychology and specialization in Thomas Berry’s Universe Story delves into why place matters, the sacramentality of creation, and how together this informs the development of our ecological self.
Rev. Peter Ilgenfritz
Peter Ilgenfritz has been a pastor for 32 years in the United Church of Christ, and a coach-in-training with the International Coaching Federation. He has also been an active member of Cho Bo Ji, a Rinzai Zen Buddhist community in Seattle for 16 years. Peter has done training with the Faith Trust Institute, The Center for Courage and Renewal, Allies for Change (Doing Our Own Work Anti-Racism Program for White People), the Pacific Institute, and the Landmark Forum.
Pat McCabe (Weyakpa Najin Win, Woman Stands Shining) is a Diné (Navajo) mother, grandmother, activist, artist, writer, ceremonial leader, and international speaker. She is a voice for global peace, and her paintings are created as tools for individual, earth and global healing. She draws upon the Indigenous sciences of Thriving Life to reframe questions about sustainability and balance, and she is devoted to supporting the next generations, Women’s Nation and Men’s Nation, in being functional members of the “Hoop of Life” and upholding the honor of being human.
Her primary work at the moment is:
- The reconciliation between the masculine and feminine, Men’s Nation and Women’s Nation
- Remembering, recreating or creating anew a narrative for the Sacred Masculine
- Addressing the Archetypal Wounding that occurred in our misunderstanding and abuse of technology in prayer, ceremony and science
Gaurav Rastogi (spiritual name Ekras Gorakh) is an interfaith Hindu speaker who writes and talks about Hindu scriptures such as The Bhagavad Gita and Vedanta philosophy, bringing the ancient wisdom into practical language that can be applied to anyone interested in living deeply. Gaurav is a founder and Director of the Hindu Community Institute in Milpitas, California, which offers a course for ‘Counselors of Hindu Tradition’. He is also a Dhyana meditation and yoga teacher (ERYT 200), and Founder of Living Deeply Foundation, which teaches the “Yoga of Living Deeply™”. His personal meditation practice includes Taoist QiGong as well as Tibetan Bon. He has studied the Christian tradition and has explored the syncretic Sufi traditions of India. He also studies the scriptures of other Indian traditions such as Sikhism, Jainism, and Buddhism. Gaurav Rastogi is an entrepreneur with twenty+ years of executive experience in Infosys and AI startups. He is the author of two business books, one eBook on meditation, and a running podcast on meditation. Mr. Rastogi holds a Mechanical Engineering undergrad from Delhi Technological University (DCE), and an MBA from IIM Ahmedabad. He loves to teach, write, and create wonderful things that make the world a better place. He lives in the Bay Area with his wife, son, and daughter.
SS AmarAtma Singh Khalsa
SS AmarAtma Singh Khalsa’s development pastorally, spiritually, and theologically took formation in Sikhi. He has engaged in arduous Sikh studies, apprenticing under elders of his faith and in rigorous meditative practice, yoga, and scriptural studies cumulating over 12,000 hours of study. In addition, AmarAtma holds a Master’s degree in Traditional Chinese Medicine at Five Branches University, where he developed his clinical profession through the practice of Acupuncture.
AmarAtma received the Amrit (Baptismal Vows) in 2009, initiating him in the heart-centered, warrior order of the Khalsa and became an Ordained Minister of Sikh Dharma International in 2012.
Seeking a connection to medicine and ministry lead him into Chaplaincy. AmarAtma worked as a Staff Chaplain at a Trauma 1, university hospital in downtown Phoenix, AZ. He flourished there specializing in end of life care working in critical care, palliative care, and worked extensively in the emergency and behavioral health departments. After championing a program with Donor Network of Arizona, supporting families at the most critical time of neurological injury and engaging with humanistic ways of connecting with organ donation, he was brought on to serve as the director of their family services department.
Langston Kahn is a Black Queer New York City based shamanic practitioner specializing in radical human transformation, ancestral healing and the restoration of an authentic relationship with our emotions. He stands firmly at the crossroads, his practice informed by somatic modalities, contemporary shamanic traditions, initiations into traditions of the African Diaspora and his helping spirits and ancestors weaving it all together.
Langston gives workshops and lectures internationally in person and online. He is a senior teacher of the Cycle of Transformation, a contemporary shamanic lineage founded by Christina Pratt. He has served for 5 years on the leadership council of the Last Mask Community, a collective of people striving to live in alignment with ancient shamanic principles and applying them in service of personal and collective liberation. You can find out more about his work at his website: occupy-your-heart.com.
Mirabai Starr will be a speaker and institute leader at the 2021 SDI Conference. 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 inter-spiritual dialog. A certified bereavement counselor, her latest book is Wild Mercy: Living the Fierce & Tender Wisdom of the Women Mystics.