Faith CoLab: Tapestry of Faith: Hindsight, Humor, and Hope: An Adult Program

Handout 2: Looking Ahead to Workshop 3

The part of living that is opposite of connecting with others is solitude.

It isn’t the same thing as loneliness. Instead it is the opportunity we give ourselves when we both become more aware of our inner depths and yet retain our sense of unity with others. As we live we try to honor these alternating moments of solitude and community, to be fully present to others and yet not alienated from our own thoughts and feelings.

One woman describes this in terms of the spaces within her that are filled with the needs and desires and requests of others. For her, "Solitude is the interval in which she waits and watches for a return of her own self in those spaces." In this sense, solitude is a kind of boundary or limit which enables us to disconnect enough from our immediate surroundings to discover what we ourselves believe, know and value. We unify and deepen the self. It is an experience of freedom, the well spring of new and stronger directions… It is the basis of original contributions to the world.

— Kathleen Fischer in Autumn Gospel

For Next Time

1. Find a quiet place to sit. Try using the Five Minute Practice of Presence regularly.

2. Using your Art Toolkit and journal writings, develop your Life Map or Lifescape and bring it with you next week. If you have any questions or concerns, feel free to call me or email me [add leader contact information].

3. Bring your Life Map or Lifescape next time. Continue to add life happenings as you think of them.

4. Remember to bring your lunch, your mug, your Journal, and your Art Toolkit to the next workshop.

Future Workshops

[Date] Workshop 3: Diving through the Layers – The Fabric of My Life

[Date] Workshop 4: Creating New Visions – Building on Experience

[Date] Workshop 5: Making Friends with Mortality

[Date] Workshop 6: Hindsight, Humor, and Hope

Find Out More

Further reading on aging and spirituality:

  • Fisher, Kathleen, Autumn Gospel (Paulist Press, 1995)

For more exercises for good health:

Information in this workshop about Denham Harman and free radical theory was adapted from an Associated Press obituary by Josh Funk, published 12/02/2014 and copyright 2014 Boston Globe Media Partners.