Seeking Aliveness

Daily Reflections on a New Way to Experience and Practice the Christian Faith

Based on his book We Make The Road By Walking, Brian D. McLaren presents a 52-week devotional to inspire and activate you in your spiritual journey. If you’re a seeker exploring Christianity, if you’re a long-term believer feeling downtrodden, if your faith seems to be a lot of talk without much practice, here you’ll find a reorientation from a fresh and healthy perspective.

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Celebrate the Earth Alive! Religious Naturalism in Ritual, Festivals, and Celebrations…

Religious Naturalism (RN) has two central aspects. One is a naturalist view of how things happen in the world—in which the natural world is all there is, and that nothing other than natural may cause events in the world. From nature we came, in nature we are, to nature we go… The other is appreciation of religion with a view that nature can be a focus of religious attention – the ‘cosmic religious feeling’ as Einstein called it.

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Why Observe Ramadan? A Unity Minister Answers

When was the last time you participated in something sacred with 1.5 billion people? The thought of that may sound exciting or possibly a little daunting, but I can tell you it is enlightening and deeply rewarding.

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Seasons and Self: Discourses on Being ‘at Home’ in Nature

Seasons and Self is a courageous exploration into religious naturalism – sometimes called the ‘forgotten alternative’ – as well as contemporary critical biblical studies by one of Australia’s leading progressives, Rex A. E. Hunt. A self-professed religious naturalist, progressive liturgist, and social ecologist., he belongs squarely within a post-liberal/ ‘progressive’ orientation.

Rex A E Hunt acknowledges the principle attributed to the Brazilian theologian Rubem Alves: “I am not after conclusions… Conclusions are meant to shut… Every conclusion brings the thought process to a halt.” The present collection is an invitation to readers to become curious and excited about what they read, and to explore further – beyond the tyranny of clear and distinct ideas! The author is concerned about ‘likelihoods’ and being ‘open-ended’ rather than closing any discussion with persuasion by argument. The intent is to strike a chord rather than ‘shoehorning’ something – ideas, answers, doctrine, correct belief – into people, often challenging the parochial and limited claims of traditional religions, or so-called pious biblical argument based on a proof-text zeal.

While both science and progressive religion are to the fore in the topics and chapters of the collection of sermons, addresses and keynote presentations, there is also a strong hint of the poetic – all evoking a sense of awe and wonder at nature and the natural, rather than the supernatural. A radical theo-eco-logy! Themes addressed include evolution, earth, cosmos, food and wisdom, as well as Autumn, children, celebration and humour. All grounded in the Ordinary… in the hope that, collectively, they will stir one’s own imagination.

“Nature and naturalism are for us today the main game for any progressive spirituality,” writes the author. “We are fully linked with our surroundings in time, space, matter/energy, and causality, and where the metaphor of ‘web’ is used to describe this interrelatedness – we create the web and the web creates us…”

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The Interfaith Family Journal by Susan Katz Miller

The Interfaith Family Journal is an invaluable resource for couples and family members practicing different religions (or none). Interactive exercises and creative activities help interfaith families decide how they want to honor their histories, cultures, and beliefs in ways that nurture joy, creativity, and empowerment.

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Rehearsing Scripture: Discovering God’s Word in Community

We can study it carefully. We can listen to sermons on it and read what the experts say about it. But in the end, says Anna Carter Florence, Scripture needs to be rehearsed and encountered—and we can do that best in community with others.

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Psalms for Our Days: Spiritual Expressions for Meditation & Life

The several dozen poems in this collection echo numerous Biblical Psalms, providing spiritual expressions for contemporary meditation and life. The inspirations for these poems are broadly selected from Abraham’s family, Kings David and Solomon, the Prophets, Jesus, and Epistle writers. For most of the universal emotions which make the 2500 year old praises so poignant, from cries of despondency to elation, there are expressions in this book to convey many yearnings to the ears of God. Topics, concepts, and language are current.

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New Audio Series Sheds Light on Jesus’ Final Days

“The Last Week” with John Dominic Crossan is designed for Lenten study

Part historical exploration, part theological inquiry, part meditation, the new audio series “The Last Week” vividly brings to life the key moments leading up to Jesus’ crucifixion and resurrection and provides space for personal reflection.

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Custom E-Courses

E-Courses and Online Retreats with Your Own Private Group

Many people these days have little time to participate in any kind of regular “in-person” spirituality group, and yet they know that studying and practicing with others can contribute signicantly to their spiritual growth. Now you can use the e-courses and online retreats already created for Spirituality & Practice as a program for your own group. Your group will receive the emailed lessons, links to any video and audio content in the e-course, and your own private “Practice Circle” (an online forum at SpiritualityandPractice.com) for your discussions.

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Fighting Destructive Chaos…with Christmas Carols?

Like many people, I am absolutely appalled by the ugly, hateful and destructive chaos emerging in this country. I have also wondered what I, a retired Oakland High School English teacher and Berkeley pastor, now living in a small town on the Oregon coast, could do to somehow change the dialogue and direction as to where the nation is going.

I hope to do so through … Christmas carols!

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Progressive Christianity and the Church?- BRUNCHtalks 9

Together, learning to be LOVE in the world! As we explore the connections between Progressive Christianity and the Church, Brian McLaren’s question: “What if Churches became schools of LOVE?” provides insights into the church’s task to become communities where we can learn to become the most LOVING version of ourselves. This is the last of our BRUNCHtalks for this summer. We have explored what it means to be Progressive in approach: Christ-like in action. 

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New Verses for Christmas Carols

Hark the Herald Angels Sing, It Came Upon the Midnight Clear, Joy to the World, Lo, How a Rose is Blooming, In the Bleak Midwinter, Wake, Awake for Night is Flying (Advent hymn)

Sing with them, ye humans bold!
Sing of peace, justice unfold!
Ring the bells of liberty;
Ring them loud ‘til all are free.

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I Pray Anyway: Devotions for the Ambivalent

I Pray Anyway. Devotions for the Ambivalent by Joyce Wilson-Sanford is comprised of 365 daily reflections and 12 monthly personal stories. It tells of the author’s return to a prayer/devotions practice as she shares her own very naked, very funny, very touching prayers and reflections.

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I Pray Anyway PLAYbook

Discussion and Workshop for I Pray Anyway: Devotions for the Ambivalent

PLAYbook for I Pray Anyway: Devotions for the Ambivalent is a creative, thought provoking guide/curriculum based on the book I PrayY Anyway: Devotions for the Ambivalent by Joyce Wilson-Sanford.

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New Creation with Matthew Fox (Video) + A Community Offering for You This Holiday Season

Hi friend,Are you looking for community on the way to Christmas?

Make Advent Great Again just might be what you’re looking for.

We’re back to compassionately struggle – not against some fabricated ‘war on Christmas,’ but against the steady dehumanization that attempt to desecrate God’s image in the face of each other – the war on Advent.

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The Resistance Bible Study Podcast

Friend and frequent contributor to ProgressiveChristianity.org,  Rabbi Brian, has compiled conversations with 12 of his Biblically literate friends in a series of podcasts that both delight and educate.

Join Rabbi Brian as he talks to Reverend Jim Burklo, Dr. Tracy Hartman, Rev. Irene Monroe, Pastor John Pavlovitz and more as he seeks to find out what the bible is and how to use it to fight oppression.

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Advent

What is coming we yearn to know
As fallen leaves herald winter snow
Will what comes be worth the wait ?
Will past hungers our future sate?

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The Christian Middle Way: The Case Against Christian Belief But For Christian Faith

The Middle Way is the practical principle of avoiding both positive and negative absolutes, so as to develop provisional beliefs accessible to experience. Although inspired initially by the Buddha’s Middle Way, in Middle Way Philosophy Robert M. Ellis has developed it as a critical universalism: a way of separating the helpful from the unhelpful elements of any tradition.

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