The Factionist/via Flickr
Today on an NPR blog I read about a symposium (at Concordia College in Minnesota) regarding “re-enchantment.” The posting caught my eye because “re-enchantment” is one of my forms of sacred play.
From the College’s website:
Awakening to Wonder: Re-enchantment in a Post-Secular Age
The symposium will explore the role of wonder in today’s world by asking such questions as:
- What role does wonder play in popular culture, including literature, movies, and games, and what is the significance of the current attention to wonder and mystery in these areas?
- What place does wonder have within the intellectual vocation of making sense of the world?
- Can reason and wonder coexist, or are they in serious conflict with one another?
- How and why is the place of religion changing in the contemporary world?
- Do such changes in religion involve changes in our sense of the world as a locus of wonder?
- What are the experiences writers in a wide range of fields of study have in mind when they speak of re-enchantment?
- Do shared experiences of wonder represent a common ground where people of different faiths, cultures, and academic disciplines might meet, understand and appreciate each other, or explore solutions to problems they have in common?
How I wish I could have attended! A post-secular age. The rebirth of wonder.
At this time of year, when the green melts away from the tree leaves, leaving on display the reds and golds; when the air has that delicious crispness in the morning; when the pace of summer activities has slowed; when I feel myself beginning to be drawn inward ~ the story-spinning part of me begins to awaken, and of course it whispers of inner and far-out worlds. My fingers itch to create masks and otherworldly garments, all in the service of re-enchantment, at a time on the wheel of the year when the earth appears to be falling into a doze.
Awaken! We need new, more expansive ways of understanding the world and our places within it. May our common ground in experiences of wonder lead to many stories, works of imagination, and the enchantment that will empower our creative connections to this amazing planet, and with one another.
A blog I read this morning sparked the idea (thank you, Meadowsweet & Myrrh) to ask the many readers and visitors of this blog to come out of hiding. I invite you to leave a comment, say hello — even if you’re just a lurker, even if you’ve never left a comment here before, why not share a little bit about yourself?
1) Tell me about yourself. Who are you? What was it that drew you to this blog? What does its title, Sanctuary Without Walls, mean to you? Have you visited the sanctuarywithoutwalls.org site?
2) Tell someone else about this blog. Send them a link to your favorite post, and let’s see what they say!
3.) Visit again, to see who has made an appearance here!
Still glowing from the Sanctuary Without Walls gathering this afternoon, which focused on the Summer Solstice.
A restful, peaceful time that included meditation, laughter, talk of spiritual practices and their relationship to light and dark, the warmth of friendship ~ and the sweet, solar glow of mead.
Our mead communion included first fruits: cherries and strawberries.
Blessings of peace, friendship, sustenance, summer, and sunlight to all!
Recently I enjoyed an inspiring meeting with a friend whom I met through our mutual involvement with the Women’s Interfaith Institute in the Berkshires. We had reconnected at a recent WII event, so it was a pleasure to have some time with her today.
What happened when we spoke was an experience of what theologian Henry Nelson Wieman might call creative interchange: “whatever it is in human life and experience that transforms us in ways that we cannot transform ourselves.” That was one way, a naturalistic way, that Wieman expressed what he understood God to be.
As my friend and I shared our thoughts, challenges, hopes, with one another, letting down our guard, opening our hearts, we found ourselves drawn to a level of conversation in which we both sensed an expansiveness, a freedom, a growing energy. It was collaboration at its best, at its most “holy.”Already some fruits are ripening from that exchange.
That’s what I love most about bringing people together in groups for learning, sharing, and perhaps even transformation. Wherever two or more are gathered in the name of holy creativity, amazing things can happen.