The Path to Peace: Transformation of the Self and Culture
How do we move ourselves from a space where we've had to live in survival mode, war, conflict, abuse, or violence and find our way to peace? Isn't that what its all about anyway? To feel safeness in our bodies, our minds, our environment, and our world. In this course, we are going to investigate the mystic's path as our guide to understand what it requires for us to become peaceful warriors.
We will look at the life of St. Francis of Assisi to appreciate the arc of moving from the warrior to the mystic. We will discuss, examine, and illuminate others from the various religious traditions to see the common link which unites them all. These spiritual luminaries will guide us through the second half of the class where we study not only the anatomy of the soul, and the archetypes that manage us, but also we lay the groundwork for the unique projects we each will develop to bring more connection, peace, and unity in our communities.
Part One: The Path of the Peaceful Warrior
The first six weeks of the class, we examine the life of the mystics, and in particular St. Francis of Assisi and his path to becoming a peaceful warrior. We begin with the book, St. Francis, by Nikos Kazantzakis, a beautiful work about the saint. We will also read from the Tao Te Ching, The Dhammapada, The Upanishads, and The Old and New Testament. We will also look to the mystics of other traditions who turned from violence toward peace. Drawing from these magnificent texts, through the reading, study, and discussion, we will seek to answer the following questions: How did St. Francis make the transition from a man of violence to a man of peace? What were the mystics talking about? What made their transformations so extraordinary and how can we apply this into today's world? We will begin to lay the groundwork for the final project each individual will be asked to create, develop, and execute into action. Time for deep introspection and contemplation is expected. Written work and class particpaction is required.
Part Two: Building Peace From Within
The last six weeks will be spent in the higher realms of consciousness as we begin to break down the anatomy of our own souls, how we fall into dysregulation, and what we can do to realign ourselves with our true purpose. We will read Caroline Myss' Sacred Contracts, as well as continuing to read the great sacred books. We will learn to identify our major archetypes, what they are, and how they influence us, and tools we can use to invoke their presence, protection, and guidance in our lives. All students will be focusing on their final presentation - a gift to give to the world to add to world peace - unique to the music inside of each person's soul. The culmination of the course is to gain a love of peace, and what is necessary for the individual to transform the self, and subsequently, the culture. Other questions we will examine: what stands in the way of people choosing love over violence? How does one's culture, history, or religion play into it? What are the challenges every human being must overcome? What peaceful solutions are available for self and culture? And lastly, we will examine how to transform our current value of war and violence as a solution to reflect peaceful solutions as a more viable option. Class participation is required along with some written work.
Course will begin April 20, 2021, and will meet every Tuesday evening for 10 weeks on zoom. All interested students must pay tuition in full or you can speak with me about an installment plan. No refunds once class begins. Dedicated students only. All books and materials for course must be purchased separately. Class size limit: 10.