2011

Sunday Services in December…….

The Great Sea of Truth

What is truth anyway? Is there any absolute truth? After looking into this I really am not sure. Our fascinating diverse SDC ran with ideas and truths of their own with interesting results. As for me I began to think about various religions and wondered if they, while having different approaches and paths, really had the same intent. A little reading and some contemplation led me to this conclusion ‘Everyone is God’ is the commonly held truth behind all World Religions. GOD is ALL IN ALL. Or whatever you choose to name the Creative Force or Source. A person?s ultimate and real identity is God. It is not difficult to see why religions did not say this aloud over the centuries. It is quite amazing we are saying it now!

It is in Judaism the core of the Kabbalah batinl, the hidden meanings of Islam vajrayana, in Buddhism the hidden teachings of the Buddha, and in Christianity Jesus revealing the mysteries of the Kingdom of Heaven recognized the conscious recognition of the Eternal Divine Presence within. Early in the history of Christianity the existence of a very mystical interpretation of the teachings of Christ whereby his message is not merely that he himself is God but that everyone else is God as well. (My feeling is  that this would not have caught on too well!)

If all religions are true, then what is all the fighting about? Probably it is politics, control, and distortions I read in my search “The carnage inflicted upon the world in the name of religion has precious little to do with genuine religion or Spirit. People fight over doctrine and dogma: who don’t see people being murdered over attaining divine union! A „religious war? is a large-scale egotism gone berserk.

“The heart of every religion has a specific gift to offer humankind; a unique viewpoint which enriches the world. Christianity stresses love and sacrifice; Judaism, the value of spiritual wisdom and tradition. Islam emphasizes universal brotherhood and equality while Buddhism advocates compassion and mindfulness. The Native American tradition teaches reverence for the earth and the natural world surrounding us. Vedanta or the Hindu tradition stresses the oneness of existence and the need for direct mystical experience.”

Perhaps Truth comes filtered through the limited human mind. Light, when put through a prism, appears in various colours when observed from different angles. But the light always remains the same pure light. Can this be compared with spiritual truth?

What about other beliefs?

Guess what belief system this comes from? The Divine is all around us. It is the fabric from which the universe is made. Everything in the material world – and all other worlds – is a manifestation of the Divine.

Life is born out of love and unconditional Love is another name for the Divine.

OR Where do these beliefs emanate from?

All that exists is derived from a single source of divine energy. God is all that exists. God is at once the entire universe, and transcends the universe as well.

A belief in the importance of uniting to preserve the health of the earth, which is often, looked upon as Gaia, (Mother Earth) a living entity.

Since all is God, then only one reality exists, and all religions are simply different paths to that ultimate reality. The universal religion can be visualized as a mountain, with many spiritual paths to the summit. Some are hard; others easy. There is no one correct path. All paths eventually reach the top. They anticipate that a new universal religion which contains elements of all current faiths will evolve and become generally accepted worldwide.

As the Age of Aquarius unfolds, a New Age will develop. This will be a utopia in which there is world government, and end to wars, disease, hunger, pollution, and poverty. Gender, racial, religious and other forms of discrimination will cease. People’s allegiance to their tribe or nation will be replaced by a concern for the entire world and its people. ???? Whose beliefs ?

So what do you believe? What is your Truth or belief?

Well that is all wonderful and pretty high-minded I thought to myself but what is my truth while still being on this human plane??? Not just what are my opinions but what is my truth? Is what I believe really true or just that I believe it to be true at this time?

I believe I am a spiritual being having a human experience What is the truth of all that ?   I know my purpose at this time is to love. I want to think and act in a loving manner from my heart. BE LOVE. (I know I don?t always make it–but- I am a work in progress! While judgments may enter my mind I can let them go more quickly than I used to do.

I believe Love without Truth however is sentimentality and it is not really love and I also know that Truth without Love is brutality and does not compute with the truth of my Being. I believe that each person must find the truth that is right for him or her. I feel that in all that happens there may not be justice—but there is some kind of Divine Order and it JUST IS!

My truth is that I truly feel one with the beauty of the natural world around me and am in awe of this universe, planet, and this place this flower- this moment in time. My truth is I am 80 years old and I can?t do all the things I used to do – I say that?s Ok and I say it?s the truth but sometimes it sucks.

I have no idea what happens when you leave this mortal coil but I know it?s perfect. My truth is I am part of a wonderful family and I treasure each one as I do my friends. I know when I sense a presence, an aura, of truth and integrity in others, as has often happened, especially lately, it is It is a wonderful feeling this soul-connection brings.

My truth is I believe in a spiritual dimension outside myself but connected somehow to me from within. I talk to these presences often. Call them angels, Holy Spirit, Universal Mind or Source. I know this is real for me. I have come to believe that there is no absolute truth, excepting the truth that there is no absolute truth. I also recognize that the only constant is there will be change.

As Susan says our individual truths are different and always changing. This month?s journey has made me really go off the deep end into the sea of truth and it feels remarkable! Join us! We look at THE SEA OF TRUTH (S) this month under the headings of: The Ancient Way with a fascinating speaker Pashta MaryMoon.

We look forward to the return of Greg Skala who has always spoken with truth, love, and integrity since I have known him- under the title- Communication of the Heart. Many Rivers-One Sea will be addressed by a panel including two fairly new-comers to our unique community, John Hutton and Stephen Kinsella.

This month will prove to be a thought provoking, spiritual journey, into our C (SEA) of TRUTH The final Sunday will take us out of the darkness and into the light. It?s the Winter Solstice. Sunday December 25th Into the Light Everyone has different ideas about celebrations at this Some love it, some find it very stressful, some ignore it, some question the whole birth of< Jesus idea and others rejoice in it. Some celebrate Chanukah. Whatever your attitude and feelings are, we welcome them. If you feel Christmas is just a myth consider this: “Myths are truths that cannot be told in words, but can only be felt in the heart.” So–No matter what your beliefs may be, you are invited to take part with your heart as we celebrate the coming of the light.

And that?s the truth! — Patricia Coleman, SDC

December 4: The Ancient Way

Coordinator: Susan Blackwood

Moderator: Susan Blackwood

Meditation: Pashta MaryMoon

Speaker: Pashta MaryMoon

Greeter: Pat Chapman

December 11 Communication of the Heart

Coordinator: Bernadine Sperling

Moderator:     John Hutton

Meditation:     Trish Coleman

Speaker: Rev. Greg Skala

Greeter: Bernadine Sperling

December 18 Many Rivers One Sea

Coordinator: Marvelous Trudeau

Moderator: Bob Winkenhower

Meditation: Patti Huot

Panel: Stephen Kinsella — John Hutton

Greeter: Marvelous Trudeau

December 25: Out of the Darkness – Into the Light

Coordinator: Patricia Coleman

Moderator: Hendrik de Pagter

Meditation: Hendrik de Pagte

Facilitator: Patricia Coleman

Sunday Services in November…….

Power of Intention is not something I do but something I am connected to. This Force intends me to be. It beats my heart and grows my fingernails. My job is to be ready to keep that connection live and open. I must make it my life’s work to learn to understand and expand that connection every chance I get. I have noticed that I can consciously expand that connection when I feel safe, or in nature or have a strong feeling of well being. It is then that I have clarity which enables this indescribable force to more easily fill my mind with a much needed new idea, or (more likely) a desperately needed new idea.

He told me about his drunkenness and the crisis that made him sober up. I picked up his excitement and the intensity of his story. Even though it only lasted a few seconds, I will never forget the feeling that overcame me as I watched him – something happened. I can’t explain, except to say that a small slice of my mind opened up and he quickly inserted something in it. I realize now that he had given me part of himself.

I had been helped by others many times before, but this time it was different. This man was honest with his whole being, not holding back anything of himself. For the first time in all my years of therapy, someone had come down to my personal level of pain. He had been there. He showed his vulnerability, his humanness. He stayed with me, not sitting up there in his professional chair while I was down here in my misery.

“One morning, after a terrible drinking bout, I woke up in a dirty, little cot, I felt ghastly. I was full of fear and despair. My body was vibrating and I was terrified at the thought of another day.” As Glenn told the story, I was impressed with his enthusiasm. His body moved in the chair as he made gestures with his arms. As he explained his predicament, a scowl broke over his face, his brown eyes went black as though he’d plunged into the depths of that old torment.

“I was in the pit of hell. I was scared and hated myself so much I didn’t want to live. I wished that I had died in the night. But I didn’t. There I was. Still alive. The first thought on my mind was to have a drink to settle my nerves. I remembered the bottle of whisky under my bed had a couple of good slugs left in it. I saved it from the night before, knowing I would need some for the morning after.” He closed his eyes as he told this part of the story. “Before I even opened my eyes, I swung my arm over the side of the bed and searched frantically for my bottle. My hands were trembling as I reached to fetch it.” He made vibrating gestures with his arms and hands and disgusting facial features. He was revolted at how physically and emotionally ill he had been. “Even before I clenched my fingers around the neck of the bottle, I could feel my hands were no longer shaking. They were steady as a rock. I knew the relief was soon to come.” He held out his hands towards me to show how steady they had become, repeating, “They were steady as a rock!” I listened and watched him. I was overwhelmed, I could hardly believe my ears—there’s someone else in the world like me.

“My god,” I blurted out, “I’m just the same! When I reach for my bottle of valium, my hands are shaking like a leaf, but when I put the pill on the end of my tongue my hands are as steady as a rock.” I saw the connection – the effect of the pill hadn’t even coursed through my veins. But I knew that instant relief was coming. I knew I could trust that little pill on the end of my dry tongue.

“It doesn’t matter whether it’s liquid or solid,” he continued, “It’s an addiction and it will kill you in the end.” What sense that made. He should know what he is talking about, he has been there. The Power of Intention was able to help me through an open and honest person.

Submitted by Marvelous Trudeau, Spiritual Directions Committee

November 6Birth of Intention

Moderator: Cynthia Pattison

Meditation: Carol Douglas

Speaker: Laura Lane

November 13 —        Communication Breakthrough

Moderator:     Esther Hart

Meditation:     June Swadron

Speaker: Pauline Karch

November 20 —     The Paradox – I Will Meet You There

Out beyond ideas of wrong doing and right doing
There is a field
I will meet you there
— Rumi

Moderator: Bob Winkenhower

Meditation: Trish Coleman

Dialogue: Dr. Roland Guenther and  Hendrik dePagter

November 27 Fully Engaged

Moderator: Joanna Wilkinson

Meditation: Dancing Wolf

Speaker: Daniel Tanner

Daniel Tanner, known to many in our community, is very close to his last days of life. He has offered to come and speak to us on Sunday on “being fully present” while dying. Being awake, aware, alive to whatever life presents.

Sunday Services in October …..

The Love Project

The Love Project was created and written by Arleen Lorrance. She received the six Love Principles in 1970 when she was teaching in a ghetto high school in Brooklyn, New York. When these simple principles were put into practice in The Love Project, the school was transformed from a center of violence and hostility to a place of love and caring where learning could actually occur.

Since 1972, Arleen and Diane K. Pike have traveled across the continent sharing these six principles with people of all ages who have used them to transform their lives.  We each chose a principle that seemed to fit into the astrological aspect of that week and our own personal beliefs and values. (At this point, we usually go out into the community looking for fresh blood in the form of a Moderator, Meditation Leader and Speaker – you have been warned).   Arlene believes that following the six principles will unblock the life force and let it flow uninhibited through our energy field. We will then be able to be the power of love in our own lives. Come and explore the Love Project with us, each Sunday in October.

Submitted by Susan Blackwood, Spiritual Directions Committee

October 2 In Every Moment of Awareness, You Are Free to Make a New Choice

Moderator:   Susan Blackwood

Meditation:   Marek

Speaker:    Ann Moffat

October 9 — Thanksgiving Community Service:  Provide Others with Opportunities to Give Thanksgiving – Deep Gratitude

Moderator:     Trish Coleman

October 16 — Receive All Persons as Beautiful Where They Are Including Yourself

Moderator:    Marvelous Trudeau

Meditation:     Rev. Doreen Holmes

Speaker:     Rev. Doreen Holmes

October 23 — No Expectation, Abundant Expectancy, Adventurous Play

Moderator:    Paul Monfette

Meditation:    Pauline Karch

Speaker:   D. Joan Thomas

October 30 — Community Service:  Create Your Own Reality Consciously

Moderator:    Cynthia Pattison

Meditation:    Ella Brown

Sunday Services in September ….

Shifting Gear

Soon we move into autumn and it is time once again to ‘shift gears.’

Change will be upon us in the form of another season with its myriad opportunities to release and let go.

In writing this short article for the newsletter, I get to dissect my process with a fine tooth comb, seeing the many ways that I fear change and resist the flow.  Although I have been on a growth path all my life, there are parts of me that are terrified of change; I want to dig in my heels and put on the brakes.  The ‘lowly caterpillar’ is a great inspiration to me.  He metamorphosizes into the butterfly with such grace and ease, never resisting the flow, trying to control the process, or asking what, when, why or how! All of nature, with the exception of most of us human beings in the western world, seems to be at ease with this process.

Now, at ‘this time of the great turning’, we get to see that our collective resistance to change on a global scale has reached epic proportions.   We can choose either to become extinct like the dinosaur or learn from the hardier species that have survived.  If humanity can harness a collective willingness to change as well as an ability to release and let go, handing it over to Spirit and willing to be guided, perhaps it is not too late…..what do you think?

This month, as in other months, we look at the weekly themes that the Spiritual Directions Committee has chosen and in so doing, hopefully we will gain further clarity as to how to deepen our own personal process.

The first Sunday in September, the topic is “Resistance or Flow”.  No doubt Rev. Joan Hopper will share valuable insights with us that we can use to enrich our own lives.  Next we get to hear about “Chaos or Change”.  Is it possible to undergo deep and lasting change without initially experiencing chaos?  These are questions some of us will be asking ourselves as we go into week two.  On September 18th, a panel of three will be sharing with us about Conscious Relationship.

We’ve all heard it said and no doubt experienced ourselves that keeping our relationships conscious can be extremely challenging at times.  This is particularly true in our intimate relationships; for some of us it is not always easy to remember that our partner is ‘our mirror’, and it often takes great courage to be willing to see this, for it requires a willingness to reclaim the disowned parts of ourselves. Here we again look forward to ‘getting some more tools’ for our toolkit’ or, perhaps pulling out those rusty ones and spraying some WD-40 on them!  September 25th, the last Sunday of the month, is our Community Service.  The theme is “Shift Happens”.  We will have an opportunity to break into small groups and share how this topic relates to us personally.

At this time I am reminded of the first few lines of the “Serenity Prayer” by Reinhold Niebuhr:

God grant me the serenity

to accept the things I cannot change;

courage to change the things I can;

and wisdom to know the difference.

—  Submitted by Bernadine Sperling, Spiritual Directions Committee

Sunday Service Schedule for September  2011

September 4— Resistance or Flow

Moderator:  Susan Hart

Meditation:  Laura Lane

Speaker:  Joan Hopper

September 11 — Chaos or Change

Moderator:  Sanjara Omoniyi

Meditation:  Trish Coleman

Speaker:  Dancing Wolf

September 18 — Conscious Relationship

Moderator:  Bernadine Sperling

Meditation:  Marie Logan

Panel of 3:  Brian Martin et al

September 25 — Community Service:  Shift Happens

Moderator:  Bob Winkenhower

Meditation:  Paul Monfette

Sunday Services in August….

Creativity in Every Moment…

Many of our inspired human members have urged us in writings and in their life examples toward creative expression as a remedy to many of life’s maladies. In those who have created great works of art, music, drama, poetry, and dance we have seen the overcoming of great odds and production in spite of adversity, as well as great healings through the experience of creativity. This month, the general area of exploration will be creativity, more pointedly, creative breakthrough.

“Sometimes you’ve got to let everything go – purge yourself. If you are unhappy with anything…whatever is bringing you down, get rid of it. Because you’ll find that when you’re free, your true creativity, your true self comes out.” Tina Turner

“Don’t think. Thinking is the enemy of creativity. It’s self-conscious, and anything self-conscious is lousy. You can’t try to do things. You simply must do things.” Ray Bradbury

The August program will bring looking at life navigation, change as opportunity, the key of imagination and the fruit of personal integration, all in relation to the creative experience. Everyday we recreate ourselves; we have, these days, an opportunity to move beyond the old and outworn into new ways of being and being with one another.

“There’s room for everybody on the planet to be creative and conscious if you are your own person. If you’re trying to be like somebody else, then there is isn’t.” Tory Amos

“…I remembered a story of how Bach was approached by a young admirer one day and asked, “But Papa Bach, how do you manage to think of all these new tunes?” “My dear fellow,” Bach is said to have answered, according to my version, “I have no need to think of them. I have the greatest difficulty not to step on them when I get out of bed in the morning and start moving around my room.” Laurens Van der Post

“They who dream by day are cognizant of many things which escape those who dream only by night.” Edgar Allan Poe, “Eleonora”

Come dream with us, come and imagine, be inspired to a creative breakthrough.

Submitted by Laurence Beal, SDC

Sunday Service Schedule for August 2011

August 7Navigating Complex Feelings

Moderator:  Laurence Beal

Meditation:  Paul Monfette

Speaker:  June Swadron

August 14 — Change – An Opportunity

Moderator:  Marvelous Trudeau

Meditation:  Clay Brown

Speaker:  Gordon Thurston

August 21 — Creation Through Imagination

Moderator:  Bernadine Sperling

Meditation:  D. Joan Thomas

Presenter:  Ella Brown

August 28 — Community Service:  Integrating Spirit

Moderator:  Hendrik de Pagter

Meditation:  Pat Miller

Three Paintings:  What do you see and feel?


Sunday Services in July….

July Program 2011 11am

Theme: Music-The Voice of the Soul

Next to silence, that which expresses the inexpressible is music. Aldous Huxley (1894 – 1963)

Throughout history, sound has been used to heal body, mind and spirit. For the month of July we are going to experience the healing sounds of music by the sharing of experiences and by listening to various musical genres. Music itself will be the message, the inspiration and the sheer pleasure.

“I am music, most ancient of the arts. I am more than ancient. I am eternal. Even before life began upon this earth, I was here in the winds and the waves. When the first trees and flowers and grasses appeared, I was among them. And when humanity came, I at once became the most delicate, most subtle and most powerful medium for the expression of emotions.

In all ages I have inspired people with hope, kindled their love, given a voice to their joys, cheered them on to valorous deeds, and soothed them in times of despair. Through my influence, humanity has been uplifted, sweetened and refined. With the aid of humanity, I have become a fine art. I have a myriad of voices and instruments.” Anonymous

The July program will include crystal bowls, the guitar, the piano, the solo voice and blended voices and hopefully your voice.

Leonardo DaVinci wrote, “Do you know that our soul is composed of harmony?”

So like Cat Stevens sang well, if you want to sing out, sing out and if you want to be free, be free “Cause there’s a million things to be…you know that there are,” or sing with John Denver, “Come dance with the west wind and touch on the mountain tops,

Sail o’er the canyons and up to the stars
And reach for the heavens and hope for the future
And all that we can be and not what we are…”

How has music affected your life?

We hope you will adventure with us into the sounds of music!

July 3rd Topic: Healing Journey with Music