How to Tear Down Emotional Walls

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Life by Wandering Around

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Sunday Papers

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Maria’s Sunday Paper: The Importance of a Spiritual Break

A few weekends ago, I went to visit my brother Bobby and his family in Wyoming. He left LA about two years ago, and at the time, his departure really hit me hard. I liked having him as a neighbor and so close by. But my essay today isn’t really about why he moved or how his move affect...

‘Sisu’ and Why Finland Is One of the Happiest Places on Earth

Framing sisu within the context of my own quest for a healthier and ultimately happier life greatly interests me. I believe that tapping into a reserve of grit or resilience that I didn’t know I had— whether by making the effort to go for a cold water swim each morning or getting on my b...

Jesuit Priest Founds Spiritual Retreat Program for the Homeless and Addicted

In 1998, Father Bill Creed SJ joined forces with Ed Shurna, former executive director of the Chicago Coalition for the Homeless, to fashion an experience that would help build community, hope and transformation among those experiencing homelessness and addiction. The Ignatian Spiritual Proje...

Parker Palmer Explains Why Inner Contemplation Is So Necessary

I was about thirty when I first felt drawn to the contemplative life. Inspired by reading Thomas Merton, the Trappist monk, I had visions of joining a monastic community. I thought the Abbey of Gethsemani, where Merton spent half his life, would be just right. Compared to Washington, DC—...

Sharon Salzberg Teaches Us That Letting Go of Conformity Can Reveal Our True Selves

There is a story I’ve heard various versions of from Ram Dass, over many years. I find it a wonderful description of our daily efforts to conform to the expectations of others, the stories they project onto us, our own assumptions of what perfection must look like, and where it can be foun...

Tony Schwartz: “Relax! You’ll Be More Productive”

The following is a reposted essay from The Energy Project Think for a moment about your typical workday. Do you wake up tired? Check your e-mail before you get out of bed? Skip breakfast or grab something on the run that’s not particularly nutritious? Rarely get away from your desk for lu...

Maria’s Sunday Paper: The Power of Inclusion

Before this week even started, I knew that I wanted to write my essay this Sunday about inclusion and unity. I knew that I wanted to write about pushing for change. About staying the course. About the power that one voice and one idea can have in making a difference. About how people can ...

Joan Chittister Remembers Eunice Kennedy Shriver at Flame of Hope Ceremony

Timothy Shriver: My mother and father loved and admired and learned from Sr. Joan Chittister for decades. So, it was a powerful blessing that she came to Hyannisport on my mother’s birthday this year to help light the flame of hope to commemorate the 50thanniversary of Special Olympics.  Sh...

I’ve Been Thinking… ‘You’re Barking to the Choir’

The following is an excerpt from Barking to the Choir: The Power of Radical Kinship by Father Gregory Boyle, founder of Homeboy Industries. Start with a title. It’s a terrible way to write a book. So I’m in my office at Homeboy Industries talking with Ramón, a gang member who wor...

I’ve Been Thinking …The Aspen Grove

An old friend drove me into the Santa Fe National Forest so we could walk the aspen grove. We stopped along the way to smell some Ponderosa pine. I stuck my nose into the crease of its bark and cupped my hands around it. The tree smelled like vanilla. We continued up the mountain. At an...