Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Spirituality and Practice course is on-demand

Spirituality and is offering its 40-part e-course, Practicing Spirituality with Thomas Moore, on an on-demand basis. It initially ran during the Spring of 2008.

Now, after "you click on the 'subscribe' button, you will be taken through a sign-up process during which you can choose to pay the $19.95 U.S. fee by credit card or check. You'll be emailed a receipt with a link to your 'account page' where you can choose when you'd like the e-course to begin and how frequently (daily, twice a week, three times a week, or weekly) you would like to receive it."

The lessons are from a number of Moore’s books — each part consists of a quoted passage, including the source of the quote, and a recommended spiritual activity to reinforce the teaching.

Frederic and Mary Ann Brussat write, "We have long appreciated Moore's recipes for soulful living. He helps us see that we can learn from our flaws, follies, and tragedies. He correctly proclaims that soul cannot be separated from body, family, work, love, politics, or power. By challenging us to care for our souls, Moore draws a bead on the bounties of spirituality. In the end, he calls us to our true vocation — to care for the world's soul and to celebrate the sacred arts of life."

Monday, August 18, 2008

Forgiveness resources include Moore's projects

Thomas Moore participated in the documentary, The Power of Forgiveness which was voted "Best Documentary" at the 2007 Sun Valley Spiritual Film Festival, and earlier this year, he spoke on a panel for the launch of its companion book, to which he also contributed. Moore wrote about forgiveness in one of his columns for Spirituality and Health magazine.

The Eastern North Dakota Synod of the Evangelical Lutheran Church of America has compiled a collection of related sources for its Resources for Forgiveness page that may interest readers who want to explore this topic.


Sunday, August 10, 2008

Bloggers mention Moore's writings about sex

Two recent blog posts refer to Thomas Moore’s writings about spirituality and eroticism. Douglas Todd, a columnist with the Vancouver Sun writes "Sex brings Christians closer to God" in which he talks about research exploring erotic spirituality, conducted by Chuck MacKnee. The post also cites research by Rich Heffern:
"...inspired by writers such as Thomas Moore, a former monk who wrote The Soul of Sex, Heffern has come to believe Catholics need to get beyond their guilt and enjoy sexuality for its sacredness; to experience married sex as a form of religious expression.

Heffern's favorite gospel story is of the woman who bathes Jesus' feet with her tears, "wiping them dry with her long sensuous hair. It always knocks me out, reminding me of the intimate Christian connection between sacredness and vulnerable flesh."

Bodies are "thoroughly sacramental," Heffern wrote. He goes so far as to make the connection that people who are uncomfortable with their own bodies, alienated from them, may be destructive to the body of the planet, leading to ecological devastation."
Todd asks MacKnee about the sexuality of Jesus.
"I think Jesus was celibate, but that doesn't mean he wasn't sexual," MacKnee said.

Jesus appeared highly sensual, he said. "People loved him and were in awe of him. I think there was a lot of sexual energy there."
According to Todd, "As in Celtic Christian tradition, MacKnee believes being sensual and sexual creates a "thin zone" between humans and God, reducing the usually thick barrier between this world and the sacred realm."

On another blog, Bill Johnson talks about eros and spirituality, where he says,

"In societal terms there is a tendency to blur distinctions among the various psychic levels of sexual experience. Society is focused almost exclusively on the moral distinctions, which sets all of us up for inner conflict and chronic guilt over our sexual desires, or complete rejection of the moral code we have been fed.

What if instead we endeavored to focus on the rich dynamic of our sexuality from an "inner wisdom" standpoint? This inner wisdom is generally personified by Sophia, the Greek goddess of wisdom, and in the Gnostic Christian tradition, by Mary Magdalene."

Later in his post, he observes,
"Eros, the idea of which comes to us through Greek mythology, is an archetypal, non-physical aspect of our being, a part of our soul, which can only be represented indirectly, and therefore requires a subtle inner awareness and attention. Unfortunately the word "erotic" is greatly misused, applied to a broad variety of sexual stimuli and experiences that are in fact very superficial. It has been co-opted by the culture as a feature of entertainment, which only fans our sexual longings further.

A great book that addresses this aspect of sexuality is Thomas Moore’s The Soul of Sex. In it, Moore goes into great detail as to how and why this level of sexuality is neglected, and compassionately proposes suggestions as to a remedy. His gentle and imaginative approach opened up what was once a locked door for me.

From Moore I learned it is at the level of subtle erotic stirrings that our sexuality starts to find connection to our spirituality..."

Labels: , ,