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An Inter-Spiritual Approach to Contemplative Living

Charleston, SC • October 28, 2016

“Inter-Spiritual” was coined to name an emerging model that is connected to social and ecological justice born through the sharing of “ultimate experiences” across religious and wisdom traditions.

Fri, Oct 28 6:30 PM - Sat, Oct 29 4:00 PM EDT

Lance Hall- Friday and Mepkin Abbey- Saturday
150 Meeting St.
Mepkin Abbey location- 1098 Mepkin Abbey Rd. Moncks Corner, SC
Charleston, SC 29401

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Co-Sponsored with Mepkin Abbey


Friday night lecture- $25 in advance / $35 day of the event (at Lance Hall- 150 Meeting St.)
Full Retreat (including Fri. Night)- $150 until Sept. 16 EARLY BIRD 
$175 after Sept. 16
(Saturday's program is held at Mepkin Abbey- 1098 Mepkin Abbey Rd.  Moncks Corner, SC)

Inter-Spirituality is a way of life, a commitment to bring what was normally practiced in monasteries into the heart of the world, using our contemplative lives to address the cries for justice and healing throughout the world.

It is also a call for solidarity in a diverse world—racially, inter-religiously, contemplatively and prophetically. This “interspiritual” lens of new monasticism brings with it openness to the varied wisdom traditions of the world, including mystical and prophetic lineages. “Interspiritual” was coined by Brother Wayne Teasdale to name an emerging model of mystical life, one that is connected to social and ecological justice while being born through the sharing of “ultimate experiences” across religious and wisdom traditions. Interspiritual new monasticism works from this space to develop new forms of contemplative life while building collaborative constituencies for social transformation. The incarnation of the “beloved community” is the quintessential task for interspirituality and for new monasticism.

In an interactive talk on Friday evening we will discuss “interspirituality” and its consequences for contemplative and prophetic life, the ethos of new monasticism, and the practices that new monastic life requires. We will also take time for contemplative practice. You will have a chance to discuss what your own new monastic practices might look like in dialogue with other participants, and we will reflect on what the “beloved community” is, and how we might begin working towards it. Martin Luther King, Jr., American philosopher Josiah Royce (who first spoke of the “beloved community”) and the prophet-mystic Howard Thurman, a pioneering African-American spiritual teacher and mentor for the Civil Rights movement, will serve as guides for us as we explore how new monasticism can build upon their legacies.

In our Saturday workshop we will delve deeper into these topics. We will take more time for contemplative practice, with teachings given on meditation andlexio divina, or “divine reading.” We will continue to explore “interspirituality” and new monasticism in terms of spiritual practice, vocation, contemplation and activism, dialogical dialogue, the relationship with traditional religious paths, contemplative psychology, and the building of intentional communities. You will be tasked with coming up with your own “interspiritual” new monastic practices, dedicated towards building the “beloved community,” or the “completing of the world,” as Pierre Teilhard de Chardin called it. I this, we will be bringing to life what contemplative life can look like in the 21st century, and how it can and must address issues of race, social justice, and political change. This is a framework that can speak to a new generation of spiritually hungry youth, while allowing for inter-generational bridges to be built between elders, wisdom traditions, secular traditions, and the younger generation.

In this course, we will work to:

  • Discover and understand the radical orientations of “interspirituality” and “new monasticism”
  • Develop, deepen, and broaden your spiritual life with concrete practices
  • Integrate your spiritual life with social and ecological justice through the sacred art of vocation, merging contemplation and action
  • Develop attunement to the guidance of the Divine
  • Explore what the “beloved community” is, and what practices can help bring it into being

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