Faith CoLab: Tapestry of Faith: Spirit in Practice: An Adult Program for Developing A Regular Practice of the Spirit

Activity 2: The Story Of Siddhartha's Awakening

Activity time: 10 minutes

Materials for Activity

  • Copies of Story 1: Siddhartha's Awakening (one copy for leader, plus several copies for participants who may wish to read along)
  • Optional: Microphone
  • Optional: Pulpit or lectern
  • Optional: Bell

Preparation for Activity

  • Review the story in advance so that you can present it effectively.

Description of Activity

Read the story "Siddhartha's Awakening" aloud. Provide copies of the story to people who prefer to read along.

After sharing the story, invite participants to take a moment to quietly center themselves, to let go of any tension or emotions that are not needed for the next hour, and to breathe deeply. You may ring a bell at the beginning and end of this silent time, or simply invite people into the silence and then gently bring them out.

After the silence, invite participants to discuss their responses to the story. Keep the discussion brief and focused, allowing time for your own concluding remarks. Ask:

  • Siddhartha was able to choose whether to awaken to the world's suffering or go on living in bliss. Are you able to choose?
  • What in your life has awakened you to the world's suffering?
  • How has your spirituality been shaped by injustice-either your own experience of injustice or that of others?

Conclude by emphasizing that spirituality and justice are interrelated. You may wish to draw on the text from this workshop's Introduction to make your points.

Including All Participants

Be sure that all participants can hear the story, or have the story interpreted for them. Using a microphone for this activity helps more people hear the story. You may wish to print out a copy of the story in advance for participants who are hard of hearing or who prefer to read along.