Spiritual Pathways at First Parish in Cambridge supports religious education and exploration that inspires adults. We strive to offer broad and flexible opportunities for spiritual practices in Unitarian Universalism and other faith-based traditions. Spiritual Pathways Committee is comprised of 5-7 members who meet monthly to discuss the spiritual needs of the adults who attend First Parish. Committee Members are: Grey Lee (chair), Carla Ashton-Cohen (co-chair), Marcia Hams, Chris Scheller, and Eric Wahl.
PATHWAYS AT FIRST PARISH
There are currently many spiritual pathways at First Parish, beyond Sunday Worship services, such as:
New Programs and Pathways This spring, we are actively seeking requests from congregants for program suggestions. If you have ideas for a spiritual or religious education program/practice, please email your suggestions to: pathways [at] firstparishcambridge [dot] org
New Facilitators We are actively seeking facilitators for programs. If you, or someone you know, would like to facilitate a program, please complete the facilitator application below and email it to pathways [at] firstparishcambridge [dot] org. We will review all submissions and forward them to the Standing Committee for final approval. In April we will be finalizing a list of approved programs for 2012-2013. Spiritual Pathways Survey Please take time to complete this survey
for Our Community
Adult Religious Education
and Spiritual Practice Opportunities
1st Thursday of each month 7:00 pm – 8:30 pm
October 4—June 6
An empowering, experiential workshop that will offer an opportunity to learn about, understand, and relate to the chakra energy systems of your own body & spirit - through journaling, movement, and creative exercises. We will be using as our guide many of the exercises and tools from Anodea Judith’s workbook, The Sevenfold Journey. Purchase of the book is suggested if possible.
Katrina Piehler is the facilitator. (katrina [dot] piehler [at] gmail [dot] com)
Saturday, October 6 9:00 am - 3:00 pm
Rapid climate change may well be the greatest challenge we humans have ever faced, and for the most part our society is ignoring the challenge. It can seem too terrible to think about, and action can feel futile. How can we take it all in without sinking into despair or being paralyzed with grief or feelings of helplessness? Is it possible to find renewal and joy in work with such enormous stakes and against what feel like overwhelming odds?
The Work that Reconnects is designed to embolden participants to face, constructively, the challenges of our time. Using the power of sharing in a group, we explore the place of gratitude in our lives, honor our grief about the losses we are witnessing, reframe our responses, and recognize our personal and collective strengths to act. Through this work, many participants have experienced renewed insight, energy, and community connections to engage in creating a better future.
The workshop is based on the work of long-time activist and Buddhist scholar Joanna Macy (see www.joannamacy.net for more information about her work and thinking) and led by volunteer facilitators from the Interhelp network (www.interhelpnetwork.org).
Rosalie Anders is the facilitator. (rosalie [dot] h [dot] anders [at] gmail [dot] com)
Sundays from 1:00 pm—4:00 pm
October 28 and December 2
The series is designed such that each will build on the former classes; however, it will not be necessary to attend previous classes as each will be comprehensible on its own.
October 28 - Theravadan, Tibetan, and Zen Buddhism in the West
This class will alternate between lecture, questions and answers, discussion, and a few short experiential exercises. The primary focus will be to cover
in three hours some of the philosophical and practical differences
between these three types of Buddhism that are among the most popular
forms of Buddhism in the West. Six core practices will be offered, two
from each tradition: Theravadan shamata or basic mindfulness
meditation practice, Theravadan metta meditation practice,
Tibetan-style analytical contemplation, Tibetan-style Dzogchen
meditation, Zen meditation, and Zen Koan Practice.
December 2 - Buddhism for Everyday Life
This class will alternate between lecture, questions and answers, discussion, and a few short experiential exercises. The primary focus will be to cover in three hours the application of a selection of Buddhist teachings from the
Theravadan, Tibetan, and Zen traditions to everyday life. Attention
will be given to the application of mindfulness in everyday life, the
cultivation of loving-kindness and altruism, the Bodhisattva Precepts,
and the Six Perfections.
Registration Information: Chris Scheller is the facilitator.
There will be no limit to the maximum number of participants, but a minimum number must be preregistered for the class to be offered. People interested should e-mail Chris at chris [dot] scheller [at] gmail [dot] com to
3rd Thursday each month 6:00 pm – 7:00 pm
October 18—December 20
The Men's Peacemaker Circle at First Parish in Cambridge is being created for those of us seeking community to practice speaking and listening authentically from the heart as a means to come to a deeper peace with ourselves and in relationship with others, whether they be our loved ones or colleagues. Our mission is to offer a safe and sacred space in which those of us who identify as men may come to touch and sound our inherent deepest wisdom on themes that arise organically from reflection on our lives during our time together.
Chris Scheller is the facilitator. (chris [dot] scheller [at] gmail [dot] com)
Limited to 12 participants. Contact Chris to express interest. The first session will be an informational session, after which participants will have the opportunity to decide whether they want to commit to the group.
Mondays 6:00 pm - 8:00 pm October 1 – November 26
Spirit of Life workshops offer participants space, time, and community to explore Unitarian Universalist spirituality. Each session focuses on a different aspect of the spiritual life, framed by the lyrics of Carolyn McDade’s song “Spirit of Life.” Like the song, the workshops are designed to be welcoming to seekers of many spiritual and theological persuasions. Participants are invited to claim an inclusive definition of spirituality and recognize the spiritual aspects of their lives. Reflecting, speaking, and listening are core activities in each workshop.
Rev. Lilia Cuervo is the facilitator (assocminister [at] fpcambridge [dot] org)
In addition to the Fall 2012 offerings, a number of programs are also offered on an ongoing basis.
Adult Choir - Thursdays at 7:30 pm and Sunday morning at 9:00 am
Contact Jonathan Barnhart our Music Director at MusicDir [at] fpcambridge [dot] org
Bliss Dance Meditation - Thursdays at 7:30 pm in the Barn Room
Bliss Dance is a moving meditation done to beautiful world music in a circle of community. A typical dance may be as simple as walk, walk, lift, lift, repeat. We set our intention, focus awareness on the candle flame in the center, and lean into the comforting sensation of being held in the circle. Immersed in the music and truly present to the experience, something magical happens -- an energy field is raised within the circle and grace rushes in. Time seems suspended as, step by step, we forge connections to ourselves, to others, to the Divine. Contact Merry Henn-Lecordier at hennster [at] gmail [dot] com.
This quiet service of reflection and meditation is held the 4th Wednesday of each month beginning at 7:00 pm in the Barn Room.
Covenant Groups are comprised of 6 to 11 people who meet for two hours each month sharing their views on selected spiritual issues. Each group will be guided by trained facilitators who support a forum for deepening our spirituality and faith in an intimate and safe setting. Topics that Covenant Groups have discussed included God as a Metaphor, Gratitude, Forgiveness, and Endings and Beginnings. In addition, each group will carry out a small service project, giving back to the church community and the wider world.
Patrick Sullivan is the chair of the Covenant Group Committee, contact him at CovenantGroups [at] firstparishcambridge [dot] org for more information.
CUUPS (Covenant of UU Pagans)
As a Pagan, Earth-centered group we respect and promote the individual Spiritual practice of each member and our CUUPs meetings/Rituals are created by those who are present and participating! We welcome you and encourage you to attend our next meeting or Ritual. Contact Laura Estan at CUUPS [at] firstparishcambridge [dot] org
UU Buddhist Meditation Group - Tuesdays at 7:30 pm
The group meets in the Margaret Fuller Room
This group practices in the Tibetan “bodhicitta” tradition of spiritual awakening through the practice of innate Wisdom and Love, the two wings of enlightenment. Discovering our natural endowment for love and wisdom leads to greater ability to express unconditional love beyond personal preferences. Contact Joel Baehr at meditation [at] firstparishcambridge [dot] org
Women’s Sacred Circle
The Women’s Sacred Circle is a group of women who gather monthly in a goddess-centered spiritual practice. It is a group that allows for creative spiritual expression. We often explore the ancient tradition of earth-based spirituality in our gatherings. Our activities aim to promote personal spirituality and well-being and a sense of sisterhood and love among the participants. New members (and those curious about joining) are welcome during our annual open circle the 2nd Saturday in October). After the October meeting the monthly meetings are closed to new members. Contact Holly Williams at WomensCircle [at] firstparishcambridge [dot] org
To register for any of the Fall 2012 Spiritual Pathways offerings, please contact the facilitator directly. For more information you can contact the Spiritual Pathways Committee at pathways [at] firstparishcambridge [dot] org
If you are interested in helping to coordinate program like these, please contact pathways [at] firstparishcambridge [dot] org
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