SoL Courses Spring 2014
Dates: 6 Saturdays, Feb. 1, Feb 8, Mar. 1, Apr. 12, May 3, and Jun. 7.
Description: Herbalist Carol-lee Fisher demonstrates the use and value of herbs in everyday life in these six workshops. Class starts on time so plan on arriving promptly at 9:15 a.m. There will be great handouts. Bring pen and tablet for notes.
About the Instructor: Carol-lee Fisher apprenticed with herbalists Donna d'Terra and Rosemary Gladstar in the coastal mountains of California, and studied aromatherapy with Dhyana Dluca. She opened her private practice in 1996 and later moved to Texas, where she was president of the San Antonio Herb Society. Carol-lee teaches about herbs to local and national audiences, with many television appearances to her credit.
Feb. 1: Getting Ready for Your Spring Herb Garden
Would you like to grow big, healthy herbs this spring? Learn how to prepare the soil, fertilize and water wisely. Get answers to timeless questions: What’s the best way to get rid of weeds? Which herb plants grow in San Antonio, and where in the garden will they grow best? Carol-lee will bring plants to taste, smell and take home, and great handouts about uses for spring herbs.
Feb 8: Winter Remedies – Healing Soups, Teas and Gargles for Colds and Flu
Looking for herbal relief for sore throats, coughs, runny noses and that all-over body ache this winter? In this interactive class participants learn how herbs are used to help the body throw off colds and flu. Try out great tasting teas and gargles, plus herbal steams and a hot soup. It’s a great way to start the New Year.
Mar. 1: Making Herbal Tinctures, Teas, and Salves
Acquire kitchen table wisdom and everyday first-aid skills from Carol-lee in this workshop. Learn to make practical home remedies from plants in your garden or the market. She will demonstrate making products from fresh and dried herbs as well as preparing teas, tinctures, and salves. Participants will take home tea, tinctures and salves as well as useful handouts.
Apr. 12: An Herbal Approach to Balance
Herbal medicine can profoundly affect our mental peace, centeredness, and joy. We will discuss how our hearts are a vital center of our being that strongly affects how we bring our life into balance. We will discover many different herbs and healing modalities that have a profound effect on our heart. Carol-lee will bring wonderful tonics to taste.
May 3: Herbs to Ease Midlife Changes
Learn to nurture yourself during menopause, through conscious time off, restorative baths, hormonal balancing teas, guided meditation, delicious scents and lots of discussion. Carol-lee discusses herbs for hot flashes, mood swings, sleep disturbances and loss of libido. Participants can taste teas and try salves and new formulas they can make at home.
Jun. 7: Creating Sacred Space with Herbs, Oils and Incense
Participants will be smudging with herbs, smelling essential oils and burning incense. Many religions and cultures have a history of using scents in their rituals. Create scents to go with your own rituals such as home altars, meditation or daily prayer. Experience how myrrh, frankincense, and sage affect us. You may go home with new favorites and blends you will want to try.
Description: Hear the amazing story of the conception and development of the Sacred Garden, Native Trails, Japanese Garden, and more. Learn how the areas were designed, problems and challenges, and special plantings with connections to other botanical gardens and arboreta around the world. The first session will meet at the SoL Center; the next two meet at the San Antonio Botanical Garden, which has a gentle terrain. Wear walking shoes and bring a hat, water, sunscreen and snacks. Participants pay entrance fee to SA Botanical Garden.
Description: In February of 2013, Marc traveled to India for 28 days to observe and celebrate two of the most important holy times in the spiritual culture of the subcontinent, The Kumbh Mela and Mahashivratri. The Kumbh Mela, a series of gatherings that takes place every 12 years along the banks of the Ganges River, is the largest gathering of humanity on the planet. The attendance at this most recent gathering was estimated to be between 80 and 100 million people over the span of 42 days. Mahashivratri is a holy day that is observed every year and is considered the beginning of the spiritual new year, as well as the most important holy day for many Hindus. Marc attended the festivals as a tourist, a pilgrim, and a spiritual seeker. He returned with stories, experiences, and images to last a lifetime.
About the Instructor: Born in San Antonio and raised in the Presbyterian Church, Marc had parents who always encouraged an open, integrated spiritual environment, drawing from various faith cultures. He graduated from Texas A&M University with B.A. in philosophy and a minor in music and pursued an independent study of Indian /Hindu religion and philosophy. He is the custodian at University Presbyterian Church and a performing musician in San Antonio and surrounding areas.
Description: By making a deep connection to the present moment and understanding your mind through the practice of meditation, you will learn to make friends with yourself. Learn how to overcome obstacles to meditation in this 5-week course. Cultivate courage and stability amid the everyday desires, concerns and uncertainties we all face. By the end you’ll be equipped with tools to establish your own meditation practice.
There are two recommended books we invite you to purchase for the class: Turning the Mind into an Ally, by Sakyong Mipham, and Shambhala: The Sacred Path of the Warrior, by Chögyam Trungpa (optional).
About the instructor: In 1995, Shastri Linda Mockeridge began a mediation practice and the study of the ancient teaching of Shambhala, which focuses on basic goodness and enlightened society. She became a Buddhist in 1997. She has taught Shambhala Buddhism in many cities, offering meditation programs to professional conferences, treatment centers and schools. She is the Shastri for the Texas Region (literally in Sanskrit, “teacher learned in the texts and commentaries”) and also a Licensed Clinical Social Worker.
Discovering the Roots of Liturgy: A Jewish Sabbath Experience with Geri Gregory and Religious Leaders at Temple Beth-El
Description: All of the Abrahamic faiths celebrate a day of rest, the Sabbath. In this evening we will experience the Jewish Sabbath, or Shabbat, from the Reform Jewish perspective at Temple Beth-El. You may discover some of the many similarities between the Jewish liturgy and the Christian prayer service, as many Christian prayers are rooted in Judaism. After an hour of class time, we will move into the shared worship experience at 6:15 p.m. This will be followed by celebration and blessings over wine/grape juice and challah bread, and a traditional Shabbat Dinner.
About the Instructor: Geri Gregory has been serving in various positions at Temple Beth-el since 1984. She is currently the member services coordinator. She has attended most of the adult education classes offered, as well as actively pursuing the study of Hebrew and Judaism. She has a B.A. in Fine Arts from University of Texas San Antonio. In the wider community, Geri serves on SAM Ministries' Long Range Planning Committee, Amazing Faiths Dinner Dialogue, and regularly pursues Interfaith and Peace activities.
The Book of Jubilees: The Oldest Interpretation of the Book of Genesis with Todd Russell Hanneken
Description: Did Adam and Eve have daughters? Was God bluffing when God told Adam, "On the day you eat of the fruit you shall surely die"? In the middle of the second century B.C.E. a Jerusalem teacher rewrote Genesis to address questions such as these. This earliest complete interpretation of Genesis, called the book of Jubilees, was authoritative for many early Jews and Christians, even though it was eventually excluded from most Bibles. But it will help us span the gap between the Old and New Testaments. After a brief introduction to the book and early biblical interpretation, we will read portions of the creation story in order to understand what the ancient author thought needed revision or clarification in Genesis.
About the Instructor: Dr. Todd Hanneken is Associate Professor of Theology at St. Mary's University. He teaches the Hebrew Bible / Old Testament and the history of interpretation, especially the Dead Sea Scrolls and other marginal books of early Jewish literature. He is the author of The Subversion of the Apocalypses in the Book of Jubilees and Director of the Jubilees Palimpsest Project, which develops technologies for recovering text from ancient manuscripts that are unreadable to the human eye.
Scriptural Reasoning: Reading the Sacred Texts of Judaism, Christianity and Islam with Rev. Kelly S. Allen
Description: Scriptural Reasoning is a class designed for non-experts who enjoy reading their own sacred texts and have an interest in the sacred texts of others. It offers an opportunity for a small group to read together texts of the Abrahamic traditions—Judaism, Christianity and Islam. Each meeting will focus on one of four topics, which are: Encountering God, Wisdom, Human Beings, and The Extra Mile. The process is designed to involve equal numbers of people from each tradition. Each participant shares reflections and questions about the texts that are read together. In Scriptural Reasoning different interpretations and disagreements make the dialogue more fruitful. The process was developed at the University of Cambridge, England, as a way to deepen understanding across religious traditions, foster friendship and help participants learn more about their own and others’ religious texts and practices. For more information on scriptural reasoning, go to www.scripturalreasoning.org
About the Instructor: The Rev. Kelly Allen, pastor at University Presbyterian Church, holds a Master of Divinity with honors from Columbia Theological Seminary and Master of Arts in politics and religion from the University of Birmingham, England.
Description: Sibi Aydelott will lead participants in stimulating discussion and exploration of three books and a movie, selected to spark your interest and curiosity about diverse cultures. Participants are encouraged to voice their ideas, perspectives, and to raise questions leading to dialog on intercultural issues. The book selections include The Toss of a Lemon by Padma Viswanathan, The Bastard of Istanbul by Elif Shafak, Midnight’s Children by Salman Rushdie, and the movie, “Midnight’s Children.”
About the Instructor: Sibi Aydelott holds a doctoral degree in Curriculum & Instruction from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. She has taught in the United States, Pakistan, Iran, Turkey, Egypt, and Qatar. She has also worked as a Curriculum Consultant. She moved to San Antonio in 2010.
Description: What does it mean to be a welcoming church to gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender people? How might becoming a welcoming church provide opportunities for spiritual and communal growth in your congregation? How can you start the conversation towards becoming more welcoming in your church? Join Alex Patchin McNeill, Executive Director of More Light Presbyterians, for a conversation about the full participation of LGBT people in the life, witness, and ministry of the Presbyterian Church and in society.
About the Instructor: Alex Patchin McNeill, executive director of More Light Presbyterians, is a nationally known educator and advocate for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ) Christians. McNeill has personally trained hundreds of Christians to become community leaders through the Institute for Welcoming Resources. He has also led departments, managed programs, and raised funds at Equality Maryland and the Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice. He also played a key role organizing faith communities for the passage of Amendment 10A in the PC(USA) and of marriage equality legislation in Maryland. Alex holds a Master of Divinity from Harvard Divinity School, and a Bachelor’s degree from the University of North Carolina – Chapel Hill.
Native and Special Trees of South Central Texas with Paul W. Cox
Description: Get acquainted with the trees in our region and the traits that make them unique. Learn how to identify various trees emphasizing native and adapted species. Hear great stories -- solve the maritime mystery of how the U.S.S. Constitution earned its name and much more! The first session will meet at the SoL Center; the next two hikes meet at the San Antonio Botanical Garden, which has a gentle terrain. Wear walking shoes and bring a hat, water, sunscreen and snacks. Participants pay entrance fee to SA Botanical Garden.
About the Instructor: Paul W. Cox has served San Antonio as a botanist for over 30 years. An alumnus of Stephen F. Austin State University, Paul is an international speaker on horticulture, native plants, endangered plant species, prehistoric flora and tropical plants and has named and released many new plants. He serves as continuing and master naturalist Instructor on botany, tree identification and horticulture. He is senior co-author with Patty Leslie Pasztor of Texas Trees-A Friendly Guide, winner of two awards for significant contributions to horticulture.
Co-Sponsored: San Antonio Climate Change Conference
Description: Solar San Antonio is cooperating with ImagineSanAntonio to produce this conference focused on informing the general public, the local business community and local governments about the environmental challenges posed by climate change and potential actions to strengthen the resiliency of the community in the face of these challenges. This conference is supported by the City of San Antonio, H.E.B., U.S.A.A., and Rackspace. Registration will be available soon.
Description: This class will explore the use of yoga as an embodied prayer, coordinating breath with movement in a moving meditation. It will be a gentle form of hatha yoga as we open our hearts and bodies to the peace and sacred life within each of us. In 1 Corinthians 6:19-20, St. Paul reminds us that our bodies are temples, so it would follow that an embodied prayer would offer us a wonderful opportunity to give thanks and glory to God through the union of mind, body and spirit. No experience in yoga is necessary. A yoga mat is recommended.
About the Instructor: Terri Boggess, Ph.D. is Chair of the Exercise and Sport Science Department at St. Mary’s University. Terri’s life-long interest in dance led to sacred dance as she pursued the mind-body-spirit connection in holistic wellness. Incorporating yoga as embodied prayer has been a very powerful extension of this process for her.
Plotting Your Personal Story, Discovering Your Myth with Dennis Patrick Slattery, Ph.D.
Supplies: Pen and Notebook or Journal. No laptops please.
Description: Friday evening’s topic is “What is a Myth and Why Is It Important?” The words “myth” and “mythology” are used today in a derogatory way to mean lie or falsehood. However, this course will explore the properties of a personal myth and the value of cursive writing as a rite to uncover and engage one’s myth. We will work on at least one writing meditation so bring a journal and pen.
On Saturday, using Slattery’s latest book, Riting Myth, Mythic Writing: Plotting Your Personal Story, we will rite our way into our personal myth, working to gain insights into the patterns we employ to make sense of our world. Our narrative identity is tied to the myth we live within. We will also engage poetry writing, haikus, and drawing to diversify our ways of understanding myth’s power and presence in our lives. You need not have attended the Friday evening talk to participate in Saturday’s Riting Retreat. Dr. Slattery’s book will be available for purchase at discounted prices at class on Friday and Saturday.
About the Instructor: Dennis Patrick Slattery, Ph.D., is on the faculty in the Mythological Studies Program at Pacifica Graduate Institute, where he has taught for 18 years. He is the author, co-author, editor or co-editor of 19 published volumes including four volumes of poetry.
African Roots of American Gospel Music: with Johnetta Johnson Page and John Silantien Invocation by Sr. Addie Lorraine Walker
Description: This program features the Tanzanian Angel Choir from All Nations Winners Church founded by Tanzanian refugees in San Antonio along with musicians from Antioch Baptist and University Presbyterian churches. How many times have you been inspired by the haunting harmonies of Black gospel singing or the intensity of a spiritual? This community sing is designed to recreate the community-based, participatory aspects of music in the African-American religious experience. Musical forms include calls and shouts, spirituals, hymns, gospel, and songs of the civil rights movement. Share in an evocative musical journey.
About the Workshop Leaders: John Silantien serves as Director of Choral Activities at the University of Texas at San Antonio, Director of the San Antonio Symphony Mastersingers, and Director of Choral Music at University Presbyterian Church. Johnetta Johnson Page, Minister of Music at the Antioch Missionary Baptist Church, is an accomplished composer, educator, lecturer, clinician, conductor and adjudicator. Sr. Addie Lorraine Walker, SSND, is Director of the Sankofa Institute for African American Pastoral leadership at Oblate School of Theology.
Eve and the Virgin Mary: Two of the Most Famous and Controversial Women of the Bible with Nora Lozano
Description: The stories of Eve and the Virgin Mary and the reinterpretation of their stories have, to a certain extent, shaped views of women in societies influenced by Christianity. These stories have been used in diverse settings in both positive and negative ways. Exploring the stories and issues from a Latina Protestant perspective, this course will attempt to recover a more healthy, holistic, and empowering view of these biblical females and the models they provide for women today.
About the Instructor: Mexican-born Nora O. Lozano is professor of theological studies and co-director of the Latina Leadership Institute at the Baptist University of the Américas. She received her Ph.D. in religious and theological studies at Drew University and her M. Div. at Eastern Baptist Theological Seminary. A member of the Baptist World Alliance Commission on Doctrine and Christian Unity, she has academic interests in the areas of systematic, Hispanic, Latin American, and women's theologies. One of her main areas of ministry is empowering Christian women to have more fulfilling and holistic lives in Christ. She is a member of Woodland Baptist Church.
Description: Because every year, more thousands of people are displaced from their homes and become refugees, a world-wide crisis has developed. This class will give us a greater understanding of some complex refugee issues, including the role of the international protection system, the treatment of refugees in their new lands and possible solutions to the crisis. The class will also engage in a Refugee Simulation that allows us to step into the role of a refugee. In the second session, a panel of refugees resettled in San Antonio will tell the story of their journeys from their home countries to San Antonio. This day we also get to taste food from around the world.
About the Instructor: Dr. Lopita Nath specializes in migration and refugee Issues. She is an Associate Professor of History and Coordinator of Asian Studies at the University of the Incarnate Word. She and her students have worked with the Catholic Charities Refugee Resettlement Program which welcomes persons from the Middle East, Asia, and Africa.
Meet at the San Antonio Botanical Garden, 555 Funston Place, 78209.
Description: Stroll through Kumamoto En, at the San Antonio Botanical Garden, with Stephanie Jones to learn the many traditional elements used in Japanese gardens. Discover how you can create a beautiful Japanese garden of your own with plants that require less water and are suitable for the San Antonio climate. Participants will receive a SAWS Landscape Care Guide and a handout on recommended plants.
About the Instructor: Stephanie Jones became a Bexar County Master Gardener after retiring from USAA Financial Services Company in 2007. She learned about different styles of Japanese gardening from the experts, Paul Cox and Don Pylant, who helped construct Kumamoto En. As a volunteer at the San Antonio Botanical Gardens, Stephanie learned plant propagation skills in the greenhouse, and served as a tour guide. She also teaches classes on gardening in tough drought conditions.
Oblate School of Theology Fifth Annual Contemplative Retreat People of Pilgrimage: Ubuntu---Practicing Compassion
Description: Ubuntu invites us to deepen our awareness of what it means to be human. Drawing on the wisdom and practice of Christian spirituality as illuminated by this African concept of being interrelated, this retreat invites all to better practice compassion for the sake of being human. Choose either: Three-evening lecture series with the Very Rev. Michael Battle or a four day contemplative retreat.
SRIC Annual Educational Event
Table Sponsorships for Organizations are available.
Whitley Theological Center at the Oblate School of Theology
285 Oblate Dr., San Antonio, TX 78216
About SoL Center
The SoL Center welcomes persons of all religious backgrounds. SoL Center events and classes offer a broad range of topics including interfaith exploration, study of sacred texts, dimensions of faith and the arts, ecology and science, and social and restorative justice.
The SoL Center strives to develop relevant and significant classes, to strengthen partnerships with other religious and educational groups, and to identify new ways in which to explore the role of spirituality and faith in our time.
The center offers you a warm welcome. Volunteer Ambassadors provide nametags, refreshments, and assistance to participants and instructors. If you are interested in becoming a volunteer in the Ambassador program, contact me at 210-732-9927 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Your contributions in any amount to the SoL Center, along with your continued participation in SoL Center events, enable us to continue our mission. If you wish to support the work of the SoL Center through a tax-deductible donation, please use the form on the back cover.
There are many other ways you can support the work of the SoL Center. Volunteers are needed to assist with hospitality, special programs, and publicity. Please contact the SoL Center to indicate any special interests or talents you’d like to share.
SoL Center classes are partially supported by an endowment established by SoL founding members, patrons and class participants. The income from this endowment and gifts received annually provide resources that enable the SoL Center to offer classes for reasonable tuition as well as provide a number of scholarships. If you would like to know more about helping to sustain the SoL Center through an endowment gift, please call or email David Gaskins, Treasurer of the SoL Center Board at: email@example.com