• Spiritual Practice
of the Day
• Spiritual Reading of the Day: Daniel Gottlieb on empathy
• More Spiritual Readings
• Today's Reading on Advent: Seeking without Seeking
• More Readings on Advent and Christmas
• The Gospel of Thomas for Advent (2014) with Cynthia Bourgeault
• The Grace of Advent: Consent to Contemplative Living with Contemplative Outreach
Coming in 2015
• Poetry to Transform Your Life with Roger Housden
• Holy Silence: The Quaker Way with J. Brent Bill
New Children's Books: heaven, happiness, sharing, mitzvah, friendship, lullaby, community life, aggressive behavior, silliness, memory
Now in Theaters: Mr. Turner, Songs of the Sea, Winter Sleep
Praying the News: For Peace and Justice
Birthday of Paul Klee
Praying the News: For the 145 School Children Murdered in Pakistan
Birthday of Bede Griffiths
Premiering on PBS: Sacred Journeys with Bruce Feiler
Now on DVD/Blu-Ray: Magic in the Moonlight, The Skeleton Twins, This Is Where I Leave You
Birthday of Jane Austen
New in Books: grace, the Qur'an, speed, Rumi, freedom, second wind, light and wisdom, narcissism
Naming the Days: Feast Day of John of the Cross
Spiritual Literacy Blog: Do Animals Go to Heaven?
Now in Theaters: Inherent Vice
Feast Day of Our Lady of Guadalupe
Civility & Spirituality Blog: Beyond Ideas of Wrongdoing and Rightdoing
Naming the Days: Human Rights Day
The Ritual Space: Fertility Ritual for Creativity
Spiritual Literacy Blog: Why Elders Smile
Now on DVD: Calvary, Dolphin Tale 2, I Origins
Now in Theaters: Still Alice
Praying the News: Gratitude for Faith Sharing on the Internet
Opening Today: Wild
Now on DVD: The Congress, Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, Fifi Howls With Happiness, The Hundred-Foot Journey, Kids For Cash, To Kill a Man
Spiritual Literacy Blog: Midlife Crisis and Then Wisdom
Naming the Days: World AIDS Day
Advent: Practices for the waiting season
Naming the Days: Birthday of Louisa May Alcott
Praying the News: A Prayer to End Global Economic Inequality
Naming the Days: Thanksgiving
Civility & Spirituality Blog: Patience & Courtesy & Airplane Travel
Spiritual Literacy Blog: Loving God by Knowing Many Things
Now in Theaters: Big Hero 6, The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1, The Imitation Game, Monk WIth a Camera
RIP Mike Nichols: Reviews of his films
Remembering a Spiritual Master: Beatrice Bruteau
Now on DVD: The Wind Rises
New Book Reviews: mindfulness, prayer, shamanic tools, poems, memoir, Judaism, Supreme Court, food, labor, indigenous people, Joan Chittister, Gaza, enemies, heart, soul fury, censored stories, teaching stories, automation, vocation, city, seasons, conscious aging
Now in Theaters: The Circle, Foxcatcher, Rosewater
Spiritual Literacy Blog: This Changes Everything
Now on DVD: Happy Christmas, How to Train Your Dragon 2, Jersey Boys, A Most Wanted Man, Planes: Fire & Rescue
Naming the Days: Dylan Thomas Day
Now in Theaters: Pelican Dreams, The Theory of Everything
Naming the Days: Birthday of Albert Camus
Opening Today: National Gallery
Now on DVD: Land Ho!, The One I Love, Second Opinion
All Saints Day: Teaching Story, Quotes, and a Litany to honor saints
New Book Reviews: language of homes, unretirement, gardens, change, sleep, Zen, learning, adversity, Mussar, art, travel, solitude
Naming the Days: Halloween
Opening Today: The Great Invisible, Goodbye to Language
Now on PBS: Death Comes to Pemberley
National Cat Day: quotes, books, children's books, excerpts, and movies about cats
Now on DVD: Begin Again, Child of God, Life of Crime, Running From Crazy
Body Spirituality: Running as a Spiritual Practice
New in Books: Christian Meditation, attention on the streets, information overload, digital world of connections, creativity, Jewish prayer, journal wisdom, Christian courage, mysticism, wonder, instant gratification
Now in Theaters: Life of Riley, The Heart Machine, 1000 Times good Night, Watchers of the Sky
Diwali — A Celebration of Our Inner Light
Spiritual Literacy Blog: Radical Amazement
Now on DVD: For A Woman, Snowpiercer, The Last Sentence
Now in Theaters: Birdman
World Food Day
Praying the News: A Prayer for the Victims of Ebola (updated)
Civility & Spirituality Blog: Why You Should Care About Other People's Kids as Much as Your Own
Feast Day of St. Teresa of Avila
New in Books: everyday spirituality, spiritual teachings, Hasidic storytelling, chronic pain, grace in aging, awe, the writing life, the future, constructive wallowing, the body, human behavior
Now on DVD: Chinese Puzzle, Violette, X-Men: Days of Future Past
Spiritual Literacy Blog: The Art of Slowing Down in a Museum
Happy Birthday to Thich Nhat Hanh and Eleanor Roosevelt
Now in Theaters: Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day; Awake: The Life of Yogananda; The Judge; Kill the Messenger; St. Vincent; Whiplash
Now on DVD: Edge of Tomorrow, Million Dollar Arm, Obvious Child
Feast Day of St. Francis: Practices, films, readings to honor the saint
Now in Theaters: The Blue Room, The Good Lie, Gone Girl
At the New York Film Festival: Heaven Knows What
Naming the Days: Guardian Angels Day
Naming the Days: The Feast Day of St. Therese of Lisieux
Praying the News: for Those in Their Prime Working Years Who Are Unemployed
Now on DVD: Chef, Lucky Them, Third Person
Naming the Days: Birthday of Rumi
At the New York Film Festival: Look of Silence, Hill of Freedom, Beloved Sisters
52nd New York Film Festival: See our reviews
Now in Theaters: Jimi: All Is by My Side, Lilting, Two Night Stand
Rosh Hashanah begins at nightfall
Birthday of F. Scott Fitzgerald
Now on DVD: Free the Mind, Neighbors, We Are the Best!
Spiritual Literacy Blog: Who Are You?
Autumn Equinox: Reflections on the Season
International Day of Peace
Naming the Days: Birthday of Leonard Cohen
Now in Theaters: Life's a Breeze, Hector and the Search for Happiness, Pump, This Is Where I Leave You
Naming the Days: Dag Hammarskjold Day
Naming the Days: Feast Day of Hildegard of Bingen
Now in DVD: Burning Bush, Burt's Buzz, The Fault in Our Stars
Spiritual Literacy Blog: In Praise of Doing the Same Thing All the Time
Naming the Days: Isadora Duncan Day
Naming the Days: Steven Biko Day
Now in Theaters: The Disappearance of Eleanor Rigby: Them, Dolphin Tale 2, I Am Eleven
Anniversary of 9/11: Prayer, Art, Practices, Reflections
Support sites like S&P: Sign a letter to lawmakers about keeping the Internet fast and free
Opening Today: My Old Lady
Now on DVD: Ida, Teenage, Words and Pictures
Spiritual Literacy Blog: The New Sharing Economy
Praying the News: For Victims of Sexual Violence
Naming the Days: Birthday of Mary, the Mother of Jesus
National Grandparents Day
Spiritual Literacy Blog: Retirees with Time to Experiment
Naming the Days: Birthday of John Cage
Now in Theaters: Rocks in My Pocket
Praying the News: For Food-Insecure Households
Naming the Days: E. F. Schumacher Day
Now on DVD: Draft Day, Night Moves
Now in Theaters: The Congress, Life of Crime, Second Opinion
Naming the Days: Birthday of Blessed Mother Teresa of Calcutta
Naming the Days: National Dog Day
Now on DVD: Belle, The Double, The Love Punch, The Normal Heart, Trust Me
Civility & Spirituality Blog: A New Civility Initiative in San Diego
New in Books: things, Jewish holiday, prophecy alive, a Christian theologian, story, peacemaking, Meister Eckhart, essays, contemporary art, second-wave spirituality, mending the Earth
Now in Theaters: Love Is Strange, The One I Love
Body Spirituality Blog: Saliva, A Bodily Overachiever
Spiritual Literacy Blog: Mental Illness Crisis
Now on DVD: Dancing in Jaffa, Fading Gigolo, Go for Sisters, Only Lovers Left Alive
This is the first children's book based on the music of Debbie Friedman, the late singer/songwriter who was called "the Joan Baez of Jewish song." She described her music as "a space in which hands and arms and souls touch in gentle song." That is a perfect description of what she does with her song "Lullaby," which is included on the CD accompanying this beautifully illustrated book of the lyrics.
Read our review of Lullaby
Read a review of Debbie Friedman's album One Song.
January 1 - 31, 2015
Poetry to Transform Your Life with Roger Housden
will bring you a poem a day especially chosen by Roger Housden for their ability to awaken you to fresh ways of seeing both yourself and the world. It's a great way to start a new year. Poets represented include Mary Oliver, Galway Kinnell, Hafiz, Rumi, Kabir, Rainer Maria Wilke, Naomi Shihab Nye, James Wright, Ellen Bass, Leonard Cohen, Czeslaw Milosz, Jean Pierre de Causadde, Derek Walcott, Wendell Berry, and many others. Each email will also include a commentary on the poem by Roger Housden, a process for consciously reflecting on the poem, a simple practice to bring the poem's meaning into your life, and an audio recording of the poem by Housden. Participants will also discuss the poems meaning in their lives a worldwide community in the online Practice Circle. Housden is the bestselling author of the Ten Poems to Change Your Life series of books and is renowned for his inspired recitations of sacred poetry.
January 12 - February 6
Holy Silence: The Quaker Way with J. Brent Bill
is a one-month online retreat on embracing silence as the Quakers do, encountering God in a living and vital holy hush. This is a quiet inner place where God teaches us directly, granting us insights, guidance, and understanding of spiritual truth. We learn to marry faith with daily life. This e-course is being led by J. Brent Bill, a lifelong member of the Religious Society of Friends and author of numerous books on Quaker spiritual practices. Through 12 emails he will share how to practice a silence deeper than words and offer tools for entering into it, including Quaker Queries, a unique form of asking non-directive questions for spiritual growth. Participants will also discuss their journey into spiritual silence in the online Practice Circle and during a one-hour teleconference with J. Brent Bill.
• The Grace of Advent:
Consent to Contemplative Living with Contemplative Outreach
• The Gospel of Thomas for Advent (2014)
with Cynthia Bourgeault
Anne Lamott sees herself as a detective always searching for clues to God's presence or absence. She possesses a keen eye for detail and a zany sense of humor. All of these qualities come to the surface in this delightful collection of essays.
Read our review of Small Victories
Read an excerpt on connections.
Remembering Spiritual Masters
The Remembering Spiritual Masters Project profiles teachers who are no longer with us physically but still offer great wisdom through their books, audios, and films. We remember Beatrice Bruteau who departed the earth on November 16.
See our profile of Beatrice Bruteau
in the Remembering Spiritual Masters Project
Handle with Care
Inspired by Marie Kondo's bestselling book (see below), we've revisited our attitudes toward and appreciation of our things. There is a rich and soulful emphasis in the world's wisdom traditions on respecting inanimate objects. We call this "soulful materialism" where the objects in our homes are appreciated and cherished for their beauty, expressiveness, life, and creativity.
See Handle Your Things with Care
Books That Speak to Your Condition
Books can inform, illuminate, and inspire. They can also directly address what we are feeling in our hearts and needing for our spiritual growth. Quakers call this "speaking to your condition." We're starting a new series in which we will "prescribe" books or films to address what might be happening in your life. We hope you find these suggestions helpful.
— Frederic and Mary Ann Brussat
See the feature
The Norton Anthology of World Religions
Under the editorial direction of Pulitzer Prize-winning religious scholar Jack Miles, this two-volume set maps more than 1,000 primary texts from six of the world's religions: Hinduism, Buddhism, Daoism, Judaism, Christianity, Islam. We suggest some ways for you to work with this anthology.
See our review of The Norton Anthology of World Religions
Read an excerpt
about how a Beatles' song was inspired by a verse from the Tao Te Ching
National Cat Day
Here at Spirituality & Practice, cats are our teachers, companions, playmates, and so much more. So on the occasion of National Cat Day, we’ve put together a gallery of the S&P cats plus a collection of our content on cats. Here are quotes, book reviews, children’s book reviews, book excerpts, and movie reviews. We had no idea we have so much material on this website about how cats enrich our spiritual journeys. Enjoy!
See our feature on cats
Marilynne Robinson won a Pulitzer Prize in 2004 for Gilead
, a novel about a Congregational minister in a small Iowa town. This companion book tells the story of his wife, a former migrant who relishes solitude and has to learn to trust. Spiritual themes that serve as sturdy accompaniments to the main melody of loneliness include the deep lights of reveling in the grace of God, the debilitations and surprises of old age, and the idiosyncratic nature of love between two very different people.
Read our review of Lila
Read an excerpt on love
Starting something new delivers a rush to our brains and we feel energized by our latest project for social or personal transformation. But, truth be told, many of us never finish what we start. We all know people whose work is characterized by perseverance, endurance, and stick-to-it-iveness. How do they do it? We've found five spiritual practices to help you finish things.
Read our article on Finishing Things
A Saint Among Us
"A saint is a life-giver . . . a human being with the same sorts of hang-ups and abysses as the rest of us, but if a saint touches your life, you come alive in a new way." Meet Vincent, an anti-social, angry, alcoholic slob, who turns out to be a saint in the life of a young boy. Now in theaters, St. Vincent
, a very funny and touching cinematic parable about spiritual transformation, is one of the Most Spiritually Literate Films of the Year.
Read our review of St. Vincent
We have seen a shift toward greater climate change awareness as more and more spiritual people have taken on this environmental, economic, and social problem as a central element in our spiritual activism. So we have searched through our resources and come up with a large cross-cut of our best content on this subject: quotes, e-courses, spiritual practices, films, books, organizations, teachers, and memes.
See our topic section on
100 Best Transformational Movies
Transformational movies reveal the astonishing ways in which human beings can be changed and set on a new path. We've curated a list of our favorite films in this spiritual genre. We hope you will use it when making your own movie viewing selections and share it with your friends and family.
See our list of the
100 Best Transformational Movies
(pdf file). Clicking on the movie titles will take you to our full reviews.
The Endless Practice
Saying yes to life, patience, following our heart, doing small things with love, holding and listening, letting go and beginning again, and finding our way to the Sacred. These are some of the practices recommended by poet, philosopher, and spiritual teacher Mark Nepo in his new book. You will want to read this one slowly so that the wisdom and the epiphanies can simmer in your consciousness.
Read our review of The Endless Practice.
Read an excerpt on saying "yes!" to life.
See our profile of Mark Nepo
in the Living Spiritual Teachers Project.
Elder Spirituality Project
Elder Spirituality is a focus whose time has come. Traditionally in the world's religions, the last stage of life is seen as a time for intensified spiritual work as well as for passing on wisdom to other generations. In 2013 Spirituality & Practice offered four e-courses for elders, and another one starts in September. Now we are launching a whole new section of the website
to provide a wide-ranging selection of curated content on elder spirituality. Read what the time of spiritual elderhood means to us and what spiritual eldering practices do for us. Then explore quotes, practices, books, book excerpts, films, art, teachers, and articles on the spiritual adventure of the last stage of life.
Visit S&P's new section on
Circles of Support
Please remember S&P when you are feeling generous! Be part of our global circle of people vitally engaged with the wisdom and practices of the spiritual traditions, living deeper and fuller lives, and serving our communities and the wider world.
Make a gift today.