This week we discuss the Jewish heroine Esther who despite her youth, sweetness, lack of wisdom and traditional power, leveraged what she knew about the spiritual journey. She helps us see how counter-cultural spiritual power really is. Esther calls her people to to essential spiritual principles: quietness and togetherness. Exercising these principles, the Jews are spared. […]
See what we did there!? “counter” and “counter.” Same word, two meanings. Now that’s big-time pun fun, people! In today’s lesson, we imagine the conversation Jesus had with his disciples as he sent them to do their part healing the world. “Don’t act too magnificent,” he told them. “Travel light,” he told them. When the establishment […]
Folks who grew up in church have probably heard the term “the mind of Christ.” (It’s in the Bible.) Today’s lesson suggest the term has the potential to help us out of the partisan pickle we find ourselves in as a nation. So far in this lesson, we’ve seen several reasons we stumble so clumsily […]
We’ve all got “sameness is safeness” instincts. They make it really hard to answer the question, “who is our neighbor?” But as we’ve been saying, everything is connected. A good way to imagine our connectedness is the metaphor of an ecosystem — interconnected but diverse. Turns out, even the neighbor we think of as […]
Our brains are evolutionarily hardwired to detect difference and to fear it. This survival strategy makes it harder to see the deeper truth of our connectedness. Given that our hardwired instincts work against relating in oneness, the spiritual journey helps us. It gives us practices to help us see beyond the limited truth of twoness […]
Five hundred years ago, Enlightenment scientists told us all things exist independently. All the social and cultural institutions we now live in, were built on instincts drawn from that basic understanding. Consequently, Western society — and especially the US — lives in a strong soup of hyper-individualism. But if, as quantum scientists have now discovered, […]
Science and spirituality have converged to affirm that we are all connected. Our separateness is an illusion that keeps us from living our lives in spiritual harmony with our interconnected reality. We all suffer the afflictions of living our two-ness illusion – chief among them is fear. Our tradition points us back to oneness. Jesus’ Sermon […]
Since each personality has a bent, each tends toward specific fear-avoiding strategies. As we’re learning to push back against our strategies, this lesson considers a whole menu of ancient spiritual practices, to help us counter a whole spectrum of fear-avoidance strategies. Have a listen.
A healthy dose of righteous indignation can be a powerful catalyst for action toward repairing the earth. …key words being – healthy dose. But, sometimes, our indignation is yet another strategy for avoiding fear. When it is, our effectiveness at being agents of change is blunted. We are blinded to the bigger picture, and cut […]
The regular occurrence of laments in our Christian lectionary cycle testifies to the fact that acknowledging affliction and fear is a healthy and a necessary part of the spiritual journey. When we distract ourselves with comforts and pleasures to avoid feeling our afflictive emotions, we disrupt the transformative process and stunt our spiritual growth.
When we let our technology fool us into believing we are safe and invincible, our tools . . . make us tools. When religion devolves into just another technology we use to allay our fears, we miss the opportunity to transform our relationship with fear and enter into the peace that Jesus offered us – […]
C.S. Lewis lamented that we settle in our lives, far too easily. In this lesson, we see that when we use religion as a tactic to calm our fears, we are settling for a second hand-religion. Religion can do better. It holds out the promise of first-hand transformation. Let’s do that!
Today’s lesson is an introduction to our next series, “Transcending a Religion of Fear.” We look at a point of origin for how religion has so often had an unsavory relationship to fear. When we use religion as a psychological crutch to avoid and distract ourselves from fear, we miss religion’s true gift. When we […]
NRCC’s journey began many years ago, desconstructing Enlightenment-Era church. After that, we began reconstructing a way to be Christian in the Quantum Era. Along the way, among the writings and practices of our ancient Christian Mothers and Fathers, we found a set of transformative spiritual tools . They help us become spiritual elders in the […]
Vice and virtue are two sides of the same coin. Rather than rejecting your “sins of the ego”, Robin Camu suggests bringing awareness to them in the moment, offering yourself loving kindness, and watching them melt into opportunities for virtue to flourish. Have a listen.
It’s our Christian mandate to change the world . . . and Lord knows it needs changing these days. But how do we do good – but do it better? How do we make change – that matters? Paul points us to some tools that help. Even in the quantum era, we Christians still rely […]
In this lesson we are reminded of the story of hope the Baby Jesus represents. When we are despairing, Baby Jesus reminds us the light is bigger than darkness, life is bigger than death, love wins over fear. And it is only from a position of hope that we garner the strength to step into […]
Our embattled world needs repair. Developing a oneness orientation will be key to unlocking our entrenchments and releasing us to deep transformation. In this lesson we continue discussing our community’s intention to be a heterogeneous church. We believe the radical act of staying in community with those who are different, will move us down the […]
Advent 2016 – Week 1 During this season of Advent, we focus on waiting in the darkness (and especially so, in this present time of darkness) with hope. With gratitude being the fountainhead of hope, our tradition points us to intentionally stirring gratitude to overcome darkness and despair. It’s one of our best tools. Let’s […]