Gathered Wisdom, Jan. 19

The sky is coming apart and together at the same time.

by Maya Stein

And the body is holding its losses like a fist. And a fleshy hope
is opening to an unprecedented vastness. And whatever we think
we are leaving behind will keep insisting. And the things we desire
will elude us. And our efforts will pose as failure. And we will not recognize
how far we’ve come. And we will solve one problem and create another.
And we will feel broken. And we will not be broken. And the silence
will be deafening. And we will love destructively. And no one
will appear to be listening. And there will be too many doors
to choose from. And we will keep saying, “I don’t know how to do this.”
And we will be more capable than we ever imagined.

The poet writes: * I have borrowed the title from my friend Karen. It appeared as a caption to a photo she posted on Instagram.

Found on A Network for Grateful Living

More from Maya Stein

Inauguration Prayer Vigil on Zoom

Shalem Institute for Spiritual Formation will host a prayer vigil on Tuesday, Jan. 19, from 6:00 pm to 9:00 pm (ET) and on Wednesday, Jan. 20, from 8:00 am to 1:00 pm (ET). (Please note: Prayer for the World will not be happening this week. We invite you to join the Inauguration Prayer Vigil instead.)

Each hour of the vigil, on the hour, a leader will offer prayerful guidance around a contemplative practice leading into extended silence. We invite you to join us for an hour or for a part of the day. We encourage you to arrive on Zoom on the hour, if possible.

For more info.

Moving on Through Forgiveness

An 8-week online study from The Wisdom Years

Thursdays, 4 to 5 pm, beginning February 4

In this pre-Lent/Lenten offering, we will look at various aspects of forgiveness from several spiritual writers and see how each fits into our own life stories. Each week will include some on-your-own reading, a brief teaching, and small-group exercises with discussion on Zoom. Materials will be provided. 

For more info and to reserve your spot.

Talk to Each Other

Episcopal Church Presiding Bishop Michael Curry invites one-on-one conversations in the new program “From Many, One: Conversations Across Difference.” The campaign seeks to encourage listening and sharing across the many differences that separate us. “Conversation with others across difference is not just a nice thing to do,” said Bishop Curry. “It is a spiritual practice of love in action.” The conversations center on four questions: What do you love? What have you lost? Where does it hurt? What do you dream?
Echoing the Latin phrase on the U.S. seal – E Pluribus (“from many”) Unum (“one”) – and following in the footsteps of Jesus, said Curry, “We trust that the spiritual practice of conversation across difference can help to knit us all into a diverse, more perfect union.”

For information on how to engage.

The Invitation to a Deeper Empathy

Beyond anger, beyond indignation, and beyond justified criticism of all that’s dishonest and unjust, lies an invitation to a deeper empathy. This invitation doesn’t ask us to be stop being prophetic in the face of what’s wrong but it asks us to be prophetic in a deeper way. A prophet, as Daniel Berrigan so often said, makes a vow of love not of alienation.

Read the entire essay.

Spiritual Formation in Today’s World

A one-year online offering from The Academy for Spiritual Formation
Incorporating the elements of community, wisdom teaching, worship, and stillness, the four three-day online sessions will follow a modified Benedictine Daily Office, as well as invite participants into communal formation with the same cohort throughout the year.

For more info.

Note: Deadline to register is February 1.

If you have something to add to Gathered Wisdom, send it to Marjorie George at

Gathered Wisdom is from The Wisdom Years, a ministry that invites older adults to deepening spirituality in the last third of their lives. If someone forwarded this to you, learn more about The Wisdom Years and subscribe to the site at

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