Spiritual Directors International

The Home of Spiritual Companionship

Saturday Workshops

Participating in the workshops of Emerging Wisdom will be a transformational experience where ancient truths are celebrated and new insights are discovered. SDI offers a variety of workshops to match the learning styles and needs of participants. The percentages after each workshop are intended to help you choose experience that will suit your learning style:% Presentation, % Discussion, and % Experiential. CEUs are available for workshop participants. Come to engage, participate, and learn from the SDI global learning community. To learn more about a presenter, click on his or her name.


S1. Entering PaRDeS: Group Spiritual Direction and Projective Dream Work
(Rabbi Howard Avruhm Addison)

Together we will explore the understanding of dreams in various world spiritual traditions and their parallels in contemporary psychology, neuroscience, and dream work. We will examine the fourfold interpretive approach to scripture (PaRDeS) found in Judaism, Christianity, and Islam and its application to projective group dream work. Participants will experience a model of projective dream spiritual direction in a group and discuss its implications for contemporary group spiritual direction.

25% Presentation, 25% Discussion, 50% Experiential
1.25 CEUs


S2. Shadow Work in Spiritual Direction
(Robert Kando Cornell, LMFT)

We will explore spiritual directees’ shadow material as an aid to their spiritual growth. The growing interest in Buddhism and in teachings such as the Diamond Approach of Ali Almaas, where psychological knowledge and spiritual practice are integrated, will be included as we examine how spiritual directors in the Christian tradition may include shadow work in spiritual direction. Concrete examples will be offered.

70% Presentation, 25% Discussion, 5% Experiential
1.25 CEUs


S3. Removing Borders with Healing Prayer
(Patricia Cowan)

Consider this workshop an outdoor retreat with God. The intentional focus will be upon God modeled after Jesus’s silent outdoor prayers. An introduction to healing prayer will be offered to examine where borders and limits exist. Participants will be invited to let go and let God remove them for healing and spiritual growth. The suggested exercises will support participants before they go outdoors as individuals to be alone with God.

20% Presentation, 5% Discussion, 75% Experiential
1.25 CEUs


S4. Walking Each Other Home: Companioning the Caregiver
(The Rev. Jean Denton)

Worldwide, there are 35.5 million people with dementia, and many more have physical disabilities. Each one has a primary caregiver. Caregivers face many issues, and the deepest ones are spiritual: Is there meaning in unrelenting caregiving? How can I cope with chronic sorrow? Why do I feel guilty? This workshop explores the issues and impact of long-term caregiving. We will look at how spiritual directors might include fifteenth century German theologian Nicholas of Cusa’s, “Coincidence of Opposites” and the imagery of the mandala as they walk with caregivers.

60% Presentation, 35% Discussion, 5% Experiential
1.25 CEUs


S5. Integral Spirituality: A Meeting Place Beyond the Boundaries of Tradition
(Bill Epperly, PhD)

This workshop offers a perspective on Ken Wilber’s integral model of spirituality and suggests this model to spiritual directors who work with seekers whose spiritual affiliations do not fall into traditional categories. Today’s spiritual directees may call themselves Christian, but they are often inspired deeply by the beliefs and spiritual practices of other religious traditions. Others are SBNR—spiritual but not religious. Wilber’s integral spirituality is a powerful model that may be helpful in companioning seekers.

60% Presentation, 20% Discussion, 20% Experiential
1.25 CEUs


S7. Ignatian Spiritual Exercises for Our Time
(Michelle Gorman, RSM, MA and Colleen Gregg, MA)

At the 2015 SDI conference, Rev. Bob Gardenhire introduced participants to Louis Savary’s, New Spiritual Exercises in the Spirit of Teilhard. This workshop describes the process and experience of leading a retreat group of nine in the Ignatian Exercises incorporating the evolutionary vision of Teilhard with Savary’s book as a guideline. We will explore how retreatants experienced the mystery of the divine milieu from deepest interior to furthest galaxy and star.

60% Presentation, 20% Discussion, 20% Experiential
1.25 CEUs


S8. Art and Renewal: A Contemplative Practice through Art and Movement
(Ingrid Hauss, BA Spiritual Direction, E-RYT in Yoga and Pilates)

This workshop offers an interactive and interdisciplinary art installation as a creative and poetic fusion of movement, breathing awareness, and relaxation. It is choreographed and facilitated along the narrative theme given by the translated words and phrases sourced in the Aramaic Prayer, “Our Father/Mother/Creator” as described in Neil Douglas Klotzʼs book, Prayers of the Cosmos. The goal is to bring participants into a physically embodied and contemplative attitude, while steeping in the words’ primal and elemental potential to transform us. Through its embodied form, the contemplative practice transcends language, cultural, and religious boundaries. Please bring a yoga mat, towel, or blanket.

40% Presentation, 10% Discussion, 50% Experiential
1.25 CEUs


S9. Yearning for Poly-culturalism: Six Stages of Discernment to Honor our Diversity
(Susana Isaacson, MS)

Few of us live our entire lives in the same environment. Yet when we encounter people who differ from us in faith, nationality, and race, we seldom examine how we feel and act toward them. This interactive workshop offers the opportunity to examine our stages of development in moving from fearing and hating those different from us toward honoring each other for the gifts we all bring to the complexity and beauty of the world we live in. 

20% Presentation, 30% Discussion, 50% Experiential
1.25 CEUs


S10. Wisdom Emerging from Contemporary International Cinema
(Carol Ludwig, MA, ABD)

This workshop will explore in-between places and liminal spaces to which twenty-first century international film can take us. Films cross national borders and bring us with them. Fifteen countries, ten languages, and all major faith traditions are included. They explore the contemplative attitude, vocation and call, discernment, spiritual growth, and approaches to our ecological crisis, leaving us with powerful images of how sacred our earth and our lives are.

40% Presentation, 30% Discussion, 30% Experiential
1.25 CEUs


S11. Which Way do the Gates Swing?: Revisiting Perspectives of LGBTQ Inclusivity
(Debonee Morgan, MFT)

Progressive individuals and churches are asking questions about LGBTQ inclusivity. How do we open up our ministry and service or our faith community to be more inviting and inclusive? This workshop will offer a reversed paradigm: What can we as spiritual directors and people of faith learn from the queer community? How do we swing the gates outward, and enter into the experience of the “other,” so as to bring back our own spiritual riches? 

70% Presentation, 20% Discussion, 10% Experiential
1.25 CEUs


S12. Summoned to Be Gardeners: Loving Earth One Row at a Time
(Tim Scorer, DD)

We begin by hearing a soundscape, which evokes in us a garden, real or imagined, a place of contemplation and action, a bordered place that is ours to love and to tend. We will view images and talk with one another about what is evoked, seeing the potential of garden in our emerging wisdom of accompaniment. Finally, we will encounter ecological realities that shape our garden practices, but also invite us into ever-deepening relationship with Garden Earth.

40% Presentation, 15% Discussion, 45% Experiential
1.25 CEUs


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