Behold, the kingdom of God is within you.
— Luke 17: 21
This online program lays a foundation for understanding the spiritual journey through Christian, psychological, evolutional, and existential paradigms. You will receive education and formation in Christian contemplation, along with support and connection to an intentional global community bonded through our common search for God.
"The spiritual journey is a training in consent to God’s presence and to all reality. … This gradual training in consent is the school of divine love in which God invites us to accept the divine plan to share the divine life with us in a way that transcends all that the human imagination can foresee."
— Thomas Keating, Invitation from God
Based on Thomas Keating's classic Spiritual Journey video series, this program guides participants through an integrated wisdom map of the awakening and healing that happens to seekers committed to the contemplative path of consent to God's presence and action within. Fr. Thomas emphasizes the need for a psycho-spiritual context: "It is my conviction that the language of psychology is an essential vehicle in our time to explain the healing of the unconscious. … For one thing, it is a language that is better understood than the traditional language of spiritual theology, at least in the Western world. It also provides a more comprehensive understanding of the psychological dynamics which grace has to contend with in the healing and transforming process." (Invitation to Love)
This program enhances and expands the foundational teachings laid out in the Spiritual Journey video series. It includes newer Thomas Keating video segments and additional contemplative wisdom teachings. Of the new year-long program, Fr. Keating says:
"[This] is an attempt to provide a roadmap, as it were, for the journey that begins when Centering Prayer is seriously undertaken and to point to some of the recognizable landmarks on the journey, as well as to its ultimate destination. The latter is not so much a goal to be attained, as an ever more resolute commitment to the journey. …
"Although [this program] seeks to establish a dialogue between the insights of contemporary psychology and the classic Christian spiritual masters, its primary goal is practical: to provide a solid conceptual background for the practice of contemplative prayer and the spiritual journey for our time. We are called to this journey not just for our own personal growth, but also for the sake of the whole human community."
You can expect the following:
- 102 emails scheduled at a pace that you choose. When this course was originally offered in 2018, two emails were sent each week on Monday and Thursday. Many of the emails include an excerpt from the Spiritual Journey video series. The others expand the theme introduced in the videos and include further commentary and related teachings.
- Transcripts to accompany all video segments.
- A time of review and summarization after each part of the Spiritual Journey series.
- Intentional pauses between each of the five parts of the Spiritual Journey series to review and reflect.
- An invitation at the end of the curriculum to envision your own deeper movement into the Christian contemplative life.
- Access to the course materials anytime, anywhere you have internet connection. The materials remain in your Spirituality & Practice account indefinitely, so you can review them at any time.
While specifically Christian in its teachings, the program offers insights that may be helpful to those of any tradition or no tradition. Partial scholarships are offered through Contemplative Outreach. Please inquire by emailing Pamela Begeman at firstname.lastname@example.org.
(choose your own start date and frequency)