This e-course was originally offered in 2013. It was gratefully received by participants, and we decided to create this special 2018 edition with an online Practice Circle. Although our S&P team will not be guiding the Practice Circle during this run of the e-course, you will find many kindred spirits there with whom to share your experiences and reflections. Here is the description of what you will receive through emails delivered daily.
"The earth is too small a star and we too brief a visitor upon it, for anything to matter more than the struggle for peace," wrote Coleman McCarthy. This point in history is a good time for us to bear witness to this truth.
We live in an extremely violent world where revenge is often the only way individuals and societies deal with problems. Ethnic and tribal conflicts are a continuing obstacle to community. Wars between nations are becoming more dangerous every day, especially given the number of nuclear weapons still stockpiled by the major powers. Locally, we are faced with an increasingly adversarial culture where vehement argument is a way of life, and dialogue and cooperation are discarded. Culture wars dominate the headlines and the airwaves as conflicts over values, gender, race, and class show no signs of abating.
In "Practicing Spirituality with Peacemakers" we offer an alternative way of living that is built on the strong spiritual foundations of nonviolence, living together harmoniously, forgiving and being reconciled with others, and seeking common ground.
We start with the inner peace of contemplation and then move out to bringing peace to the family, neighborhood, and workplace. All this involves the practice of lovingkindness and compassion in the midst of the daily grind where tensions reign and tempers often flare. And then we'll take the personal and make it political as we study how peacemakers have resisted the formidable powers of war and destruction.
We share the teachings and inspirational practices of peacemakers such as Mahatma Gandhi, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., Thich Nhat Hanh, Desmond Tutu, Joan Chittister, Bernie Glassman, Daniel Berrigan, John Dear, and many others. The 40 emails, sent daily, each include a short passage to contemplate, a related practice to try that day, and a link to an online Practice Circle where you can share reflections about the e-course with other participants. Join us on the frontlines of peacemaking in our times.
(6 CEHs for Chaplains available.)