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An aging maverick, Episcopal Bishop John Shelby Spong has no regrets

At 82, retired and enjoying life, Bishop John Shelby Spong doesn’t have to be the liberal enfant terrible whose pronouncements for gay rights and against traditional dogmas once scandalized Christendom.

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Committal Service for the Dead

We come in sorrow, confronting the fact that life ends. Yet we also know that there is a power stronger than death—the transformative power of love. Love has joined us together as husbands and wives, as fathers and mothers, as parents and children, as brothers and sisters, and as friends and neighbors. To be touched by love is to have experienced the transforming power of God on earth.

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A Pebble for Your Pocket

Combining the stories and meditation practices from the previous edition of A Pebble for your Pocket with those collected in Under the Rose Apple Tree and several new stories, this completely revised edition is comprised of Buddhist parables and stories from the author’s own childhood experiences. They elucidate principles of Buddhism and mindfulness practice, giving young readers and their parents concrete advise on handling difficult emotions like anger. Written in a highly accessible style that doesn’t rely on lot of jargon or difficult vocabulary, this collection emphasizes the importance of the present moment through vivid metaphors, original allegories, and colorful stories. Young readers learn about handling anger, living in the present moment, and “interbeing” — the interconnectedness of all things. Thich Nhat Hanh offers various practices that children can do on their own or with others that will help them to transform anger and unhappiness and reconnect to the wonders of nature and the joy of living in the present moment.

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Jesus Modeled for Our Class Today

Jesus modeled for our class today,
naked in his open-palmed innocence.
We had never seen such a model before.
He even brought with him his own light.

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What Is

From A Place Where Secret Shadows Shine

If you can
tell me where
I’m going
after I leave here,
I won’t be
going there.

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Memorial Service

P: We have gathered here today to give thanks for and honor Name’s life. You have come because you are family – close family or extended family; or because you are friends – old, long-trusted friends or newer friends; or because you knew Name through other connections in his life. We have gathered to mourn his death and to grieve for our loss.

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Funeral Service for an Inclusive Community

Written by Rob Stoner, August 2009

I recently conducted the funeral for my father, who died after a long episode of declining health. It was a joy and a privilege to work with my family in preparing this service. But many of our family are not avowedly Christian so I wanted to respect their spiritual traditions as well as be faithful to my own. I also wanted the theology to reflect my own liberal/progressive Christian understanding.

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Hidden Dimensions: The Unification of Physics and Consciousness (Columbia Series in Science and Religion)

Bridging the gap between the world of science and the realm of the spiritual, B. Alan Wallace introduces a natural theory of human consciousness that has its roots in contemporary physics and Buddhism. Wallace’s “special theory of ontological relativity” suggests that mental phenomena are conditioned by the brain, but do not emerge from it. Rather, the entire natural world of mind and matter, subjects and objects, arises from a unitary dimension of reality that is more fundamental than these dualities, as proposed by Wolfgang Pauli and Carl Jung.

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Sophia Rising: Awakening Your Sacred Wisdom Through Yoga

Today, most of the 20 million yoga practitioners in the Western world don’t share yoga’s Eastern cultural or religious grounding, yet they feel—or seek—a spiritual connection from their practice. Examining yoga’s philosophical underpinnings, Sophia Rising reveals how people from any faith can use yoga to create a sacred space inside themselves. Author and yogini Monette Chilson demystifies yoga and explains Sophia– Greek for Wisdom– the iconic face of the feminine divine found in Western religious traditions. Through information and example, she invites readers to listen for the inner voice of Sophia and meld their own spiritual beliefs with their yoga.

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The Hubble Ultra Deep Field in 3D

“Awesome” doesn’t begin to describe this. It’s an uplifting and mind-expanding experience to have a glimpse of how the playground of the physical world extends outward farther than one had ever imagined. “We pointed the most powerful telescope ever built by human beings at absolutely nothing, just because we were curious, and discovered that we occupy a very tiny place in the heavens,” the narrator says. When the Hubble Telescope is pointed at an “empty” area of the sky, the images of over 10,000 galaxies appear in the telescope’s long-range view: Photons of these galaxies have traveled for 13 billion years to record their images for us to see.

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Four Yogas in the Life of Church

Sometimes issues need to be reframed, and it can often be helpful to look outside one’s own tradition for a framework. So for those who may be struggling with similar misunderstandings in their congregations, I offer the Four Yogas as a lens through which to see things differently.

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Convictions: How I Learned What Matters Most

Reflecting on what matters most, both for the church and for Americans, leading biblical scholar and premiere teacher for Protestant churches, Marcus Borg surveys the most significant conversations and personalities that shaped his life, and presents his convictions about the faith and it’s role in the twenty-first century.

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