My first event in 2013 is a workshop I am planning for the women of our church. The workshop will begin at 9:00 a.m. on Saturday, January 12, 2013 and end at 1:00 p.m. Why the women of our church? Since 2009, Paul and I have been enjoying our membership in Unity of Wimberley, a congregation of incredible people. First, there was a core group from the beginning who were willing to put effort and time into the creation of this organization. I am so grateful that they persevered through the founding years so that it could grow into the spiritual community that now exists. There are artists, scientists, writers, naturalists, teachers, counselors, ranchers, entrepreneurs, business folks, healers, and many more categories of people who attend Unity of Wimberley. We have found a spiritual home and are very grateful for the stimulating, growth-provoking Sunday services. The leadership of Reverend Ellen Debenport is the major reason we like this community. She is the real attraction factor and every talk she gives provides great food for spiritual growth. Kit Holmes is music director and brings us to new spiritual levels of celebration in every service.
One of the best researchers on the scene today is a woman named Brene Brown, Ph.D.,LMSW. You can see and hear her on You-Tube or TED talks. She is a Social Worker who has done extensive research on the negative emotion called shame. I think she is incredibly brilliant. She is transparent, authentic, compassionate, and very connected. I recommend all her books, especially the latest one, published this year and entitled, “Daring Greatly.” Shame is one of our most pervasive, dangerous negative emotions. She has wisely suggested that the answer to shame is resilience. We study resilience in Bio-Mimicry and I learned that resilience is nature’s answer to cycles of decay and death. It is our natural tendency to try again following failure. We spring back from our defeat with new courage, unless we are caught in the spiral of shame, which is a basic self belief that we are not enough.
One of my favorite Jungian analysts and writers is Marion Woodman. I have watched videos, read most of her books, and always enjoy what she has to say. She wrote this article, published in O, The Oprah Magazine, which I hope you will read and enjoy. She speaks to ideas that I hold to be true. Thanks to Lindsay James for sharing the article. I pass it along to my readers:
Many of my workshops have golden nuggets of joy that stay with me forever. One of those workshops was at beautiful Serenbe near Atlanta, GA. The name of this incredible retreat center was created by the owners to reflect what the retreat allows: BE SERENE. I have had several wonderful events there and am always amazed and thrilled with the setting, the beauty, and the great food served at Serenbe.
My love of books, stories, and good drama means that when I am in a book store or movie theatre, I am like a kid in a candy store. I remember a silent retreat several years ago at Lebh Shomea, a Christian community located near Sarita, TX. The Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate created a contemplative-eremitical lifestyle on this South Texas ranch, which was given as a legacy by Sarita Kenedy East. Hermitage style cabins, good food, solitude, deep silence and many places for meditation and prayer are part of the retreat….. AND they have a library that covers the entire main floor of the Big House. When Sister Marie took me to the closet where she had just opened a box of brand new books from Shambala publishers, she told me I could have them all to myself for my entire stay if I wanted. I felt that same feeling I experienced in childhood when Grandpa Kiker would walk with me down to Mr. Stroud’s corner store in Canyon, TX. I was allowed to gather several penny candies from the glass jars, all to devour for my very own. For me, all my life, learning is the sweet stuff of my existence. No wonder one of my top five Gallup strengths is “Learner.”