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Urban Sanctuary Yearlong Mentorship Program
Goals: The goal of this yearlong mentorship is inner discovery. You will learn to identify and trust your own spiritual heart and discernment. You will develop a familiarity with various spiritual paths and mystics, ancient and evolutionary. Along the way you will develop in sensitivity, intimacy with spiritual freedom, moral and ethical clarity, inner strength and resilience, and most of all in Love.
Objectives: In this one-year mentorship with Amy Edelstein, you will develop contemplation skills to deepen your own experience of Spirit. You will also cultivate the skills to mentor others. We all can be of support to others in so many ways. When we develop trust, a sense of awe in the face of mystery, and an ability to listen deeply, grounded in our own experience, we can become a light in the lives of those around us.
Modules: The modules are designed to teach you the fundamentals of essential aspects of an evolutionary spiritual path. The emphasis is on experiential and practical application. You will learn to distinguish between helpful and unhelpful ways to develop, cultivate the art of transformative spiritual inquiry, and understand the elementals of an evolutionary spiritual perspective. These are suggested modules although the actual pathway of the yearlong mentorship will respond more to your own process of inner development than to an externally set curriculum. Other themes that may be covered include Spiritual Awakening Across Traditions, The Nature of Consciousness & Mind, Spiritual Practices, Periods of Cultural Development over 50,000 years; Gender Identity & Spiritual Growth.
Contemplative Practices: Individual practice will be determined in conversation together according to your spiritual background and interest. Practices may include: Meditation, Contemplation of Texts or Nature, Journaling, Prayer, Movement, Sacred Song.
Reading List: Suggested readings support the inquiry process, contemplative practices, our weekly phone conversations, and the written exercises. Generally, the approach is to engage with a short passage from a mystic or author, reading enough to inspire contemplation but not so much that it becomes excessively didactic or academic. Readings will be discussed during the weekly mentorship call.
Mentorship Sessions: We will meet by phone/skype an average of once a week for 50 minutes by phone. During this time we will review the mentee’s experience and insights, cover the study material and practices, and do practice together. We can do these sessions in person when practical and also spend other time together, doing practice, reading/studying, at events, and in observation of classes.
Choose 10 Modules to Design a Curriculum that Matches Your Current Spiritual Interests
You will build your year mentorship from the following modules, choosing at least two module in each section.
MODULE 101 Spiritual Aspiration
This module includes an exploration of your spiritual trajectory. We will identify when you started to have intimations of the call of Spirit and how that began to appear in your life in various ways. We’ll identify when and how you responded to that call, where you feel you’re at now with it, what you want to evolve beyond and what you feel you want to explore more deeply.
MODULE 102 Understanding Mind, Thought & Awareness
Learning to distinguish between mind – the organ of knowing, thought – the objects of awareness, and awareness – that which knows. Learning how to work with the three, what they are good for, how to create objectivity from thought.
MODULE 103 Trusting the Call of Spirit
How do we know what is motivating us? How are we to understand the shaded lens of our conditioning? How can we discern the workings of what’s traditionally called “wily ego”? How do we cultivate our more awakened responses while allowing our personalities to be unique and individual? Why do traditions put so much emphasis on cultivating compassion and service of others?
MODULE 201 Deepening Your Practice
Testing the limits of our spiritual practice. Identifying thresholds of fear of the unknown. Listening for the constructive inner voice guiding our spiritual inquiry and discovery. How can I set up my practice space or rituals in my home life to create a more rich experience of life and practice?
MODULE 202 The Life of the Mystic
What does it mean to live the life of a mystic in the world? How does it compare to other models of mystics in other times? What are the advantages to being “in the world but not of it”? What are the advantages to living in cloistered seclusion? When could you practice both? Am I a mystic? Do I aspire to live a mystical life? Can I awaken to a more profound ground from which to live the life I am currently living? How would doing that change my life? Consider the possibility of structuring some retreat time into your life now.
MODULE 203 My Life as Service & Path
Deepen your engagement with your life as one held in the context of Spirit. How is my life serving as a path of service and as a path of development? Do I have limited ways of seeing service and practice? Am I or can I give more?
MODULE 301 Deep Time, Big History & an Evolutionary Process
What do we know about the evolutionary process? What are the broad strokes and what are the subtle implications? How can I profoundly shift my sense of self identity? Why can this serve as a spiritual awakening or as a materialist view of the world? What difference does that make
MODULE 302 Cultural Development, Gender, Race, & Ethnic Conditioning
How am I constructed in my own life and personal history? In my gender, ethnic and national history? How does the world look different when I consider influences and archetypes from 50,000 years of human cultural development?
MODULE 303 How We Develop
A large part of spiritual deepening is understanding how we develop towards greater maturity, greater compassion and empathy. There are various models of human transformation and cultivation of our spiritual sensitivities and human maturity, some ancient and some contemporary. In this module we’ll learn the art and science of human relatedness and various models of transformation from Buddhist philosophy on the levels of consciousness to Robert Kegan’s stages of higher human development. Emphasis will be on how these pathways of transformation and maturation apply to our own experience and support the deepening and ease in our interactions with others.
MODULE 304 Dynamics of Transformative Dialogue & Collective Awakening
What is my own experience of collective inquiry? How can I go deeper? How can I identify the experience of awakening or the stirring of a collective intelligence when I am with others? How can I apply the depths of what I am learning in my individual spiritual immersion to my relationships with others.
MODULE 401 Befriending Grief, Loss, Separation & Death
What’s my experience of grief, loss, transitions? What are my coping mechanisms? How can I open to this natural process of life with more curiosity and engagement? How can I relate differently to others who are in the midst of a transition or experiencing a separation, ending, or loss?
MODULE 402 Meaningful Signs & Symbols
Ritual is a time-honored way to ensure that the sacred has presence in our homes and lives. For many, estranged from tradition, it is challenging to find rituals that feel authentic, natural, and meaningful. In this module, we will explore rituals from 14th century labyrinth walking to blessings over meals and daily functions, to sacrilizing the anniversaries of important life moments. This will be both an introduction to the beauty and potency of ritual and immersing in practice.
MODULE 403 The Path & Practice of Mentorship
What does it mean to mentor others? How can you teach while knowing you still have more to learn? What would be an appropriate next step? How do I learn the art and science of human transformation? Exploration of mentoring relationships, highlighting our innate skill to support and care, while cultivating increasing sensitivity and depth. We will focus on different models of development, recognizing spiritual need, and the care of the soul.
MODULE 404 My Own Spiritual Path and Practice
How will I move forward? What are my next thresholds? Where do I want to put my spiritual energies? We’ll look back at the beginning of the year and identify the most significant awakenings and shifts that have occurred, teasing out the smaller changes that may be the most significant.
Samples from the Suggested Reading List
MIND, CONSCIOUSNESS, HEART & THE CONSTRUCTED SELF:
Martin Buber, Vimala Thakar, Swami Chidananda, Desert Fathers, Lama Yeshe, Hafiz
TRADITIONS, PRACTICE & SPIRITUAL STUDY:
Tenzin Palmo, Thomas Merton, Abraham Joshua Heschel, Father Arseny, Marcia Prager, Zalman Schachter, Benedictine Rule, Parker Palmer, Bhikku Bodhi, Mirabai Starr, Tsultrim Allione
EVOLUTION – SPIRIT, NATURE, CULTURE & COSMOS:
Teilhard de Chardin, Brian Swimme, Elisabet Sahtouris, Carter Phipps, Connie Barlow, Ken Wilber, Steve McIntosh, Mary Oliver, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Robert Keagan & Lisa Lahey, David Abram
- You will create your 10-month curriculum, choosing 10 from the modules above.
- This mentorship requires a full year commitment (10 months)
- 50-Minute Weekly Mentorship Call
- Review of 2 written assignments
- Certificate of Completion
I am interested! Please set me up with a free consultation about the program.