With great pleasure, Spirituality & Practice invites you to become part of the inaugural group for two training programs based on the recognition that all of life is a spiritual practice. These programs are for individual seekers, spiritual leaders and companions, caregivers and service providers, and activists in change-making organizations.

You will learn how to bring such qualities of heart and mind as attention, beauty, compassion, forgiveness, gratitude, hospitality, openness, transformation, vision, and wonder into your home, community, workplace, and the larger world. You will be part of a global effort to foster a loving world in which all people live with dignity, a sense of belonging, and a reverence for all life through the sharing of transformative practices and the wisdom of the world's religious and spiritual traditions.

Why Spiritual Literacy?

Spiritual Literacy is the ability to read the signs that point to the active presence of Spirit within and around us. This skill can be applied in all life experiences to discern a world full of meaning and connection. As such, it is a foundational study for any personal or spiritual growth program.

Spiritual Literacy powerfully enhances professional development both within and beyond the arena of spiritual work. It generates a wider perspective on your experiences and an expanded sense of resilience and capacity. Spiritual Literacy training enables spiritual leaders, chaplains, life coaches, educators, counselors, spiritual directors, psychologists, social workers, community organizers, healthcare professionals, nonprofit and business leaders, and others to thrive both personally and professionally.

How and What Will You Learn?

Spiritual Literacy is learned through illustration, film and book resources, mentoring and small group reflecting, and, most importantly, spiritual practices. These components are central to our two 9-month Spiritual Literacy Certificate Programs.

Your training will begin with an immersion in the Alphabet of Spiritual Literacy. This extraordinary tool for cultivating a life of meaning and connection was developed by Spirituality & Practice's founders, Frederic and Mary Ann Brussat, as the foundation of their acclaimed book Spiritual Literacy. The 37 letters of this Spiritual Alphabet — from Attention to Zeal (see complete list at right) — are universal spiritual practices in every transformative tradition. They can also be understood as core values and qualities of heart and mind. Each has been carefully vetted and validated through a deep study of the world's religious, spiritual, psychological, and cultural traditions. They are essential to wellbeing, resilience, strong relationships, social commitment, openness to diversity, and personal transformation. The Level 1 training will help you learn to read the sacred in everyday life.

As you proceed in your study of the Spiritual Alphabet in Level 2, you will explore how to apply it to a wide variety of life moments — everyday activities, emotional experiences, times of transition, and periods of community engagement. You will also discover countless ways in which these practices address your personal symptoms of struggle and imbalance as well as the difficulties expressed by those with whom you live and work. The Level 2 training will give you experience in living and leading others in living a meaningful life.

Throughout the Certificate programs, you will discover that what makes this study truly unique is the virtually endless set of resources that have been gathered and curated to help you explore, understand, and illustrate Spiritual Literacy. Students and graduates of our programs join a worldwide community supported by the Spirituality & Practice website and its 65,000+ pages of content — all coordinated and curated around the framework of the Spiritual Alphabet. You will never run short of resources and support as you continue in this profound way of life.

Level 1: Reading the Sacred in Everyday Life
- 9-Month "Exemplar" training
- Receive a Certificate in Spiritual Literacy and Transformative Practices
- March 26, 2022 – January 8, 2023

This program will give you practical experience with the 37 practices in the Spiritual Alphabet. You will develop a deep personal understanding of each practice through readings, reflections, peer conversations, and regular spiritual practices. Guest "Exemplars" will share how they use these practices in their own lives. These esteemed spiritual teachers will provide concrete examples of spiritually literate approaches along with wisdom from their traditions and experiences to support them.

Live and video lessons will explore what Spiritual Literacy is, what blocks it, and how it is described in the spiritual traditions. You will explore multiple ways to "read the sacred in everyday life" from the course leaders, guest teachers, your own small group, and the resources at SpiritualityandPractice.com. You will discover what recognizing the sacred within us, in others, and in the world around us looks and feels like every day.

Program Structure:

  • 2-day Opening Immersion
  • Weekly live teaching introducing the week's Alphabet Practice plus a guided spiritual practice
  • Weekly email with a link to the recording of the live video plus resources on the week's Practice: spiritual quotations for reflection, book excerpts to read, spiritual practices related to the Alphabet Practice, optional films to watch that illustrate the Practice.
  • Weekly small group meeting of 5 peers
  • Monthly virtual events on Zoom with a presentation by a Guest Exemplar of one of the Alphabet Practices, debriefing on the prior month's lessons, Q&A sessions, and group spiritual practice
  • 2-day Final Immersion

Level 2: Living and Leading Others in Living a Meaningful Life
- 9-Month "Facilitator" training
- Prerequisite: Level 1 training
- Receive a Certificate as a Spiritual Literacy Facilitator
- March 11, 2023 – December 17, 2023

Upon completion of the Spiritual Literacy Level 1 Program, graduates may deepen their practice of Spiritual Literacy in a second 9-month program. Following a similar course format to Level 1, this training is designed to meet the needs of today's leaders, who often find that people come to them seeking ways to deepen their spiritual lives, achieve greater emotional intelligence, embrace a broader perspective, and discover a deeper connection to all of life.

The program prepares participants to bring Spiritual Literacy to a wide variety of life experiences — everyday moments, emotional moments, transitional moments, and moments of community engagement. You will learn to apply Spiritual Literacy to your relationships, work, and service activities. A special focus will be on "Spiritual Rx Prescriptions," the use of specific practices to enhance qualities an individual seeks or to balance and counter qualities the individual wishes to minimize. Additional program material will cover how best to guide others in Spiritual Literacy in both personal and professional settings.

Spiritual Literacy is a growing movement of training, study, and support and is fueled by the robust online resources in our celebrated website SpiritualityandPractice.com. Spiritual Literacy Facilitators will be encouraged to establish their own groups and centers, develop their own applications, and contribute to the Spirituality & Practice website.

The Program Structure for Level 2 will be similar to that of Level 1.

"Every happening, great and small, is a parable whereby God speaks to us, and the art of life is to get the message."
— Malcolm Muggeridge


Our Exemplars are bestselling authors, professors, and renowned teachers long loved and endorsed by Spirituality & Practice. Click on their photos below to learn more about each of these extraordinary guest teachers.

  1. credit Peter Forbes


FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

What are the benefits of these programs?

The Spiritual Literacy Alphabet Practices are transformative practices for self, society, and our common world. Spiritual Literacy connects:

  • the world's spiritual and religious traditions
  • the traditions and today's spiritually independent and unaffiliated seekers
  • spirituality with the popular culture
  • our work and our values
  • our inner life with our outer engagement
  • people along all points on the political and ideological spectrum
  • diverse communities
  • humans and the natural world

Students of our Spiritual Literacy Certificate Programs develop a greater capacity for:

  • self-awareness
  • resilience
  • reverence
  • joy and enthusiasm for life
  • feelings of connection
  • empathy
  • deep listening
  • energy and focus
  • health and wellbeing
  • personal and group flourishing
  • creativity
  • clarity when facing challenges
  • managing stress, disappointment, and loss
  • patience
  • openness and tolerance
  • compassion and kindness
  • visionary thinking
  • ritual making
  • trust

What are the exact dates for the two levels?

Level 1: Certificate in Spiritual Literacy and Transformative Practices
March 26, 2022 – January 8, 2023

  • Opening Immersion Weekend: 9 am – 12 pm PT and 1 pm - 4 pm PT Saturday, March 26, and Sunday, March 27, 2022
  • Weekly small group meeting (day and time to be determined by group)
  • Monthly 2-hour Zoom gathering on last Saturday of the month, 9 am – 11 am PT, April – November (November’s gathering moved to December 3)
  • Holiday Breaks: November 20-26, 2022, December 18-31, 2022
  • Closing Immersion Weekend: 9 am – 12 pm PT and 1 pm - 4 pm PT Saturday, January 7, and Sunday, January 8, 2022

Level 2: Certificate as a Spiritual Literacy Facilitator
March 11, 2023 – December 17, 2023

  • Opening Immersion Weekend: 9 am – 12 pm PT and 1 pm - 4 pm PT Saturday, March 11, and Sunday, March 12, 2023
  • Weekly small group meeting (day and time to be determined by group)
  • Monthly 2-hour Zoom gathering on last Saturday of month, 9 am – 11 am PT, April – November (November’s gathering moved to November 18)
  • Holiday Break: November 19-25, 2023
  • Closing Immersion Weekend: 9 am – 12 pm PT and 1 pm - 4 pm PT Saturday, December 16, and Sunday, December 17, 2023

Where do these trainings take place?

All online, synchronous and asynchronos connections. No travel involved.

How much time will I need to commit to these programs?

It is anticipated that reflections, journaling, and reading; participation in the 90-minute meeting with your small group; and daily practice will require 3 - 5 hours per week; the monthly Zooms will be for two hours. The immersions at the beginning and end of the program will be 12 hours over two days. As with all practice-based programs, consistency of participation is important, and the more time you are able to devote to the program, the more you will get out of it.

Are scholarships available?

We will be able to offer a limited number of scholarships based on true financial need, with a preference given to those planning to do both 9-month programs. If you would like to receive information on how to request tuition assistance, please check yes on question #15 of the application, and we will send you an application for tuition assistance. Both the initial application and the application for tuition assistance must be received no later than March 1, 2022.

Is a religious and/or spiritual background required?

The Spiritual Literacy Certificate Programs are unique trainings, created and curated by Frederic and Mary Ann Brussat, Dr. Habib Todd Boerger, and Dr. Jonathan Ellerby. They offer you carefully guided journeys into deep studies of what it means to be a vibrant spiritual being in service to a world brimming over with wisdom, life lessons, and deep connections in each and every moment.

The programs are rooted in the study of a Spiritual Alphabet (see list in the right column of this page) made up of universal qualities of heart and mind that have been uplifted in traditions around the world and throughout time. Hence, the programs are compatible with people of all religious and cultural backgrounds, including those who are spiritual but not religious, pantheist, and atheist.

Who developed the Spiritual Literacy Certificate Programs?

The Center for Spirituality & Practice in Claremont, California, has been developing the field of spiritual literacy, drawing upon the wisdom first presented in the national bestselling book by its founders, Frederic and Mary Ann Brussat, Spiritual Literacy: Reading the Sacred in Everyday Life, and the companion volume Spiritual Rx: Prescriptions for Living a Meaningful Life. The Center runs the multifaith website SpiritualityandPractice.com. Coding on the website indicates which of 37 universal spiritual practices in the Alphabet of Spiritual Literacy practices are illustrated by each piece of content.

The website is a unique wisdom archive providing resources for spiritual journeys in a multifaith and multicultural world. Its 65,000+ pages of content include book, film, audio, and art reviews; book excerpts; profiles of spiritual teachers from many traditions; articles on and instructions for spiritual practices; spiritual quotations; blogs; plus curated content on topics, traditions, and three special projects: The Practicing Democracy Project, The Elder Spirituality Project, and The Reverence Project.

Spirituality & Practice has also developed or partnered with teachers to create more than 200 online courses on spiritual practices.