As a seasoned spiritual director and Ignatian retreat leader, Susan is well aware of the importance of opening our hearts and creative capacities as part of our spiritual practice. An avid fan of the arts herself, Susan is well-suited to help us grow our spiritual practice through the creative arts.
While on retreat, we will have extended opportunity to consider the use of visual art, poetry and music as tools for contemplation. We will explore both contemplating existing works and creating original art as a spiritual practice. Our time will be heavily experiential and will also include time for sharing with each other the fruits of our contemplative experience.
Words from our teacher…
We are intellectual beings and we love to use our minds. But underlying all religious traditions is an understanding that conversion is an experience of the heart, not an experience of the mind, an understanding that leads to an emphasis on the affective experience in prayer. That helps explain why we find music, art and poetry used in all prayer traditions. As long as humans have existed, they have turned to arts to express the inexpressible. Art and music are not simply objects, but an experience of opening to mystical awareness.
Susan Stabile is a Christian who spent many years practicing Buddhism. She is a spiritual director and retreat leader trained in the Ignatian tradition yet is at home with spiritual practices outside of that tradition. The author of the book, Growing in Love and Wisdom: Tibetan Buddhist Sources for Christian
Meditation (OUP 2013) and of the blog, Creo en Dios, Susan is a Distinguished Senior Fellow at the University of St. Thomas School of Law and an adjunct instructor in Theology at St. Catherine University. She previously held the position of Director of the University of St. Thomas Office for Spirituality. Susan regularly offers talks and retreats on spirituality.