Sacred Poetry As Contemplative Practice

December 17, 2017 • 7:00pm to 8:30pm

Take a break and reconnect in the midst of the Holiday hubbub…

In all of the great contemplative spiritual traditions, repeating aloud a sacred verse is a way of opening to the divine indwelling. For example, Christian’s have lectio divina, and the Sufi’s have both dhikr and spiritual audition. Poetry Divina is both an ancient and current practice. Sacred poetry and scripture from all religions and traditions are recited from the heart in order to remove obstacles and open to the divine indwelling, the Great Love.

Sacred Poetry creates a container for individual experience – and group community building. We recite sacred poetry – or more exactly, we read and listen from the heart. This listening frees us of excessive dependence on thinking and allows us to move toward God and a point of communing beyond words, thoughts, and feelings.

In this single evening program, we will work with poems individually and as a group, sing, and share community time. This is important work that, when done with a small group, expands out into the world.

We will focus on the poetry of Rumi,  as December 17 is known as his Wedding Night, observed and celebrated by people around the world as the night of his passing into the other world.

A 13th century Sufi scholar and mystic, Jelaluddin Rumi was loved and respected by Jews, Hindus, Christians and Muslims alike. His poetry calls to us from beyond the concerns of limiting beliefs. As a clear, powerful voice of divine, ecstatic love, he awakens us to the possibility of a direct and intimate relationship with the Divine. We see that not only could God be our Beloved, but that we are the beloved of God.

We will also dive into the work of other great contemplative poets from all times and traditions:  Kabir, Machado, Hopkins, Eliot, Hafiz and many others.

Even if you have little experience with poetry, this evening will renew your soul and prepare you for the holidays. Bring your favorite poem, or just come to listen.

All are welcome.


Workshop Leader: Edward Groody

Edward is president of Ed Groody & Associates, Inc., an organization development-consulting firm, helping companies get exceptional results and create a Spirit of Community in the workplace. Edward specializes in helping leaders implement change in a way that engages and honors people. He has facilitated highly successful financial and cultural turnarounds in a variety of industries and corporate settings.
Prior to starting Ed Groody & Associates, Inc. he served as Director of Organization Development with Covenant Health in East Tennessee. Edward is one of a handful of individuals to train and work with M. Scott Peck, M.D., bestselling author of The Road Less Traveled and developer of the innovative group and team-building process called Community Building. Edward was also a part of the leadership group that organized and facilitated the first men’s conferences with renowned poet and author Robert Bly in Minnesota in the 80s and 90s.
Edward is a longtime student of contemplative practices. In addition to his full-time consulting work, he leads Poetry Divina, Community Building, meditation/centering prayer and other contemplative workshops for retreat centers, universities, nonprofits, businesses, and religious groups.


Interested?  Please consider joining Sacred Poetry as Contemplative Practice.

Date: December 17
7:00pm to 8:30pm

Location:  Meaningful Life Center, 116 Carr St., Knoxville, TN 37919

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