Embracing All Of Us

   with Sharon Coleman, Ph.D  
                           May 24, 2012 

Living an embodied spirituality means being able to embrace the messy, unwanted parts of our human experience. This includes thoughts we may label "petty" or "mean" and feelings such as anger, hurt, grief or resentment. Because these parts of our experience go against our values and block our connection to the life in and around us, we try to push them away. 

Yet, some spiritual and psychotherapeutic traditions inspire us to see that what we want to avoid or transcend is actually precious raw material--the very stuff out of which we grow and expand. 
In this talk we will explore what makes it possible to genuinely embrace our difficult experiences so that we deepen self-understanding and compassion.   

Sharon Coleman, Ph.D. will offer perspectives gleaned from her own work and learning.  She will also walk you through a hands-on practice in which you can  work with a specific life experience that may have blocked you.

Sharon M. Coleman, Ph.D. is a psychologist in private practice based in Hillsdale, New York.  She was drawn to Buddhism by the beautiful presence and teachings of Zen Buddhist master Thich Nhat Hanh.  She has led a meditation sangha and has given workshops on Nonviolent communication.   Most recently she is inspired by the Living Compassion work of Robert Gonzales.  She has a lively interest in these things and wants to share her enthusiasm with you.
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Come join us for this women's monthly potluck program
and bring a friend.

$5-10 suggested donation
(See Membership section below)


**In the interest of simplifying and going green, 
we ask you to:

* Consider bringing re-usable dinnerware (plates and flatware) for your own use to reduce disposables.  We will provide dinnerware for anyone not able to bring their own.
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The Church on the Hill Chapel
55 Main Street
Lenox, MA

(The brown building across the street from Nejaime's Wine Cellar)

5:45 Gathering with food
6:00 Welcome Circle
6:15 Potluck Supper
7:15 Program
8:45 Closure/clean up

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Women's Interfaith Institute in the Berkshires
invites you to join a diverse group of spirited and spiritual women

Student $10/year
Full membership $35/year

For more info contact: 
Alison Gaines  413.442.3604
or click 

                                  photo by Bob Sherman

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

The Forgiven World:
Forgiveness as a Path of Awakening

 "Where there is forgiveness, there is God Himself."
- Adi Granth, Shalok, Kabir (Sikism)

True forgiveness is one of the most healing, releasing and freeing gifts we give to ourselves. A life full of open forgiveness is a life of grace. Forgiveness is a process by which we heal our sense of separation from others, from our true Self and, ultimately, from God.
Together with Rev Natalie Shiras and Susan Jameson through prayer, metaphor, song, movement and meditation, we will explore the deeper meaning of forgiveness and discover how forgiveness of ourselves and others can be a path of awakening to the truth of who we are.  'Forgiveness as a way of life means living with a profound commitment to our own healing and peace of mind. Through this commitment, we find that we naturally become instruments and teachers of healing and peace for our families, our communities, and our world.

"To forgive means to be willing to look beyond the expression of fear and forgetfulness, beyond his/her case of mistaken identity, to the truth that lies beyond."  
“O God, Help me To believe The truth about myself No matter How beautiful it is,” Macrina Wiederkehr, Seasons of Your Heart 
 (Inspired by Rev Diane Burke and Robin Casarjian, Forgiveness: A Bold Choice for a Peaceful Heart)