Silence in Spiritual Direction

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Silence is sometimes referred to as God’s first language. But how you feel about silence probably has a lot to do with your personality type, your neurological make-up and your upbringing. Introverts may be more comfortable with silence than extroverts. People who were punished with “the silent treatment” may avoid silence at all costs. No [Read More...]

Awareness of God

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The first step in any spiritual journey is awareness–becoming open to a reality beyond yourself. Many people enter spiritual direction to become more aware of God’s presence in their life and in the world. They want their belief in a Higher Power to make that journey from head to heart. They want to feel the [Read More...]

What spiritual direction cannot do for you

Spiritual direction is not professional counseling. Even though there may seem to be some overlapping practices (such as active listening), there is a vast difference between therapy and spiritual direction. Spiritual direction is primarily a wellness practice. First and foremost, spiritual directors do not diagnose or treat disorders of any kind. For example, if a [Read More...]

What Spiritual Direction can do for you

At its best, spiritual direction can help you become more aware of where God is active and moving in your life. It’s designed to help you savor and remember God’s goodness and discern how it is you are being invited to follow God into a broken and hurting world. Spiritual direction is also helpful for [Read More...]

Who comes to Spiritual Direction?

All kinds of people come to spiritual direction–there is no one “type.” Directees are lay people and clergy. They come from all classes of society. They are male and female. Gay, lesbian, bi-sexual, transgendered and straight. Some are very religious and some fall into the “spiritual but not religious” category.  They are seekers and lifelong [Read More...]

It’s about Contemplation

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Spiritual Direction is a contemplative practice. By contemplative I mean it values contemplation, which is a form of quiet resting in God’s embrace with no need for words or particular actions. It is what the Psalmist meant when writing, “Be still and know I am God.”  The late Walter J. Burghardt, Jesuit theologian and spiritual writer, defined [Read More...]

The Spiritual Director as Field Guide

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Spiritual directors today are, in a sense, “field guides” along the walk, pointing out interesting highlights and asking you to think more deeply about certain questions. As a field guide, it is hoped that we will at least recognize the terrain. At times, we discover it with you. We don’t walk the walk for you, [Read More...]

From Caves to Comfy Chairs and Candles

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The first spiritual directors were holy men and women who left their life in the city behind to lead a sparse and ascetic life in the deserts of Egypt. Amazingly, pilgrims from all over followed them to the desert asking them to speak a word of wisdom for them. Not many of us live in [Read More...]

Where does Spiritual Direction come from?

This ancient practice of spiritual direction—dating back to the 3rd century Desert Fathers and Mothers—seems rather new to some. That’s because before the 1950′s, about the only people receiving spiritual direction were Catholic priests, nuns and monks—and usually it was with elders from their communities.  Also, for Catholics there is a long history of spiritual [Read More...]

What Exactly is Spiritual Direction?

Spiritual direction is an exploration of your spiritual path with a person trained in listening, deep reflection and discernment. Those are all carefully chosen, important words so let’s break it down. We explore with you. We don’t tell you what you need to know, do or have in order to be spiritual. It is essential [Read More...]