When I am struggling, maybe with grief, or trying to sort out something difficult in my life, I often go to a special spot and quietly wait for the new sun to appear. It always makes a significant difference in my being when I do this. My load feels lighter. My fears often dissolve. My grief can be transformed into hope. Over the years I have thought of all kinds of metaphors that may explain this phenomenon. I am reminded that it is a new dawn, or a new day. No matter how painful or dark my situation seems to be, as that sun comes over the horizon everything in my life begins to look and feel different. The new sun symbolizes a new beginning for me. I feel I have gained a new perspective. My internal darkness has dissolved into new light and I am comforted.read more
When you see something so clearly, you inevitably wonder why it took so long to find the solution. It’s the same with so many things in life. Once you see reality clearly, you can’t believe it took you so long to see it. Suddenly everything becomes clear. When you fall in love, find your passion, realize an injustice, see nature’s beauty, it’s like scales fall off your eyes and everything becomes clear.read more
Imagine what it must have been like for the early followers of the man Jesus of Nazareth; a peasant, rabbi, radical, and disturber of the peace, executed as a political threat to the Pax Romana. Jesus of Nazareth went to his death insisting that peace through victory was no peace at all. Jesus of Nazareth proclaimed the radical notion that peace, true peace can only be established and maintained through justice.Peace, true peace, is the result of everyone having enough. Distributive justice which ensures that the poor and the powerless, the marginalized and the despised have all they need to live in peace.It was such a radically dangerous notion that the powers that be could not let it live.read more
Every story is true, some of them actually happened… Song of the Beloved is a provocative retelling of the Jesus story from the perspective of Mary Magdalene. After fourteen years of suffering with the debilitating effects of trauma, Mary is healed by Jesus. She then becomes his most enthusiastic and devoted disciple; later becoming his companion, co-minister, beloved and wife. Designated the Magdalene, Mary is appointed to carry on Jesus’ ministry after his death. A great work of fiction, inspired by scripture, historical documents and ancient sacred texts, Song of the Beloved provides nourishment and inspiration for those in search of a relevant Christianity – with Jesus and Mary as two who lived the fullness of the human experience while teaching us how to love.read more
When I pray to you for help, O God,
Do I hope that you will intervene,
Treating me as powerless as a child
Who can do no more than kick or scream?
As a human being come of age
Help me work with you to earth each dream.
If we allowed ourselves to meet God everywhere, each day would become a Christmas.
Christmas is not so much a season of the year as a season of the human heart.read more
The Winter Solstice marks the longest night of the calendar year. This liturgy invites participants into a time of rest and reflection that counters the frenetic pace of the secular Christmas season.read more
What can we learn from the Christmas story? I believe that just as Jesus seemed to be aware of the Divine Spark (or Christ) presence within him, which allowed him to love almost unreservedly and break boundaries, so too we are invited to see this Divine Spark within ourselves. God is literally with us. And isn’t this what we need in today’s world, where we see atrocities and tragedies such as the ones I listed above? If each of us were to acknowledge our inner divinity, and then recognize our neighbour’s inner divinity – regardless of their religious beliefs or non-beliefs – would we then see larger stepping stones toward global peace?read more
The day after the first Shabbat in Advent, Mary and Joseph took Jesus, who was eight years old, To the Great Mall of Bethlehem. There, in the middle of the huge indoor shopping complex, Was a stately …read more
While Luke’s narrative, the most detailed account of the birth of Jesus, is lyrical and inspiring, in the Birth of Jesus, Spong persuasively demonstrates it is allegory. Layer by layer, Spong weighs every element of the New Testament stories against Old Testament legends building a convincing case. Spong’s essays step backward and forward through the scriptures demonstrating why each element was chosen by the early CE writers to establish Jesus’ lineage and divinity. It is a fascinating and persuasive journey and a remarkable illustration of Biblical scholarship.read more
A few years back a book called The Secret took the world by storm, and it is still prominently displayed on the shelves of most bookstores today. The message of the book was to invoke the laws of attraction and intention to attain a life and circumstances that we desired. And because of its popularity I was compelled to grab a copy to see what all the hype was about. I wondered how a book could really promise those kinds of results, and why so many people were swearing by its results. And then it hit me that the best selling book of all time really isn’t all that different. And this got me to wondering if Jesus and King David may have been teaching us this same “secret” thousands of years prior?read more
Through the ages, we have called upon the One for Whom we yearn in countless ways, through myriad names. The term, “The Beloved” embraces all of these names and forms of the Divine, affirming their Unity. Beloved is also a 4 day camping, art, and music festival on the Oregon Coast. We intend to present sacred music to help eradicate the illusion of separation from each other, from the earth and from The Beloved.read more