Faith, hope, and love abide, but the greatest of these is love: the surprise of all surprises, a choice to say “yes” to what life brings us.
We speak of having a good life, having a bad life, giving life, losing life — expressions that make it sound like life is something we have. But do we have life, or does life have us? Br. David Steindl-Rast, a Benedictine monk and the co-founder of Gratefulness.org, guides us to notice that both are true. Life belongs to us; we belong to life; and thereby to the very Source of life which those who use the word “God” correctly call God. We are totally embedded in life, and by “becoming yes,” we enter fully into it.
This retreat is the last of three on the “Divine Virtues” based on videos of Br. David’s talks during a 2011 cruise to Alaska. The virtues are faith (Trusting in Life – 2020), hope (Engaging Hope – 2020), and love. These positive attitudes, which appear in all religious traditions and spiritual paths, connect us to the deepest reality of life, the divine spark within us.
In the videos for this retreat, Br. David’s bubbles over with poetry and insights born from years of contemplation and compassionate action. In the spirit of true religion — which literally means “to tie again” bonds which have been broken — he takes us on a healing journey that helps reconnect us “with all the plants and the animals and the whole cosmos, the stars and galaxies and everything.” He explores how any profound experience of belonging feeds us intellectually, emotionally, and morally, and how we can thaw any frozen waters we encounter with the warmth of our own depth of inner experience.
The e-course consists of 12 emails, each with a link to a video of Br. David’s teachings about love from the Alaska cruise, accompanied by written reflections. Study questions draw out your insights to record in your journal and share in the Practice Circle, an online forum open 24/7 to the e-course community.
This retreat was created by Patricia Campbell Carlson, formerly Executive Director of A Network for Grateful Living (ANG*L) and now Program Director at Spirituality & Practice, assisted by Margaret Wakeley, now S&P’s Creative Director. Both accompanied Br. David on the Alaska cruise and have worked closely with him on Gratefulness.org.
Choose to live in love! To register, click on the “Subscribe to E-Course” button below.