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Thirty Minutes Without My Phone

By Tania RunyanDecember 28, 2016

The fact that a half-hour meal alone in an IHOP occasions its own blog post shows just how far I’ve devolved in my practice of solitude. I’ve gotten pretty good at putting my phone away when going out for meals with friends and family. But when I’m alone in a waiting room, in line at…

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Traveling Through These Days of Awe

By Richard ChessOctober 17, 2016

I’m in a plane ascending to 37,000 feet. How restless have I been this year? How easily distractible? Already on this flight, from the time of boarding the plane until now, I’ve jumped from e-mail to Facebook to FiveThirtyEight to Jane Hirshfield on Basho to Mishkan Hanefesh, Sanctuary of the Soul, the Reform movement’s new…

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You Must Be Present to Learn

By Richard ChessAugust 10, 2016

For the past five years, I’ve been experimenting with the use of contemplative practices in the classes I teach at UNC Asheville. For a quick overview of the range of contemplative practices being used in higher education today, see The Center for Contemplative Mind in Society’s Tree of Contemplative Practices. On the eve of a…

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The Holy Wafer on the Floor

By Morgan MeisSeptember 23, 2015

Sometimes I take the Host in the mouth, other times I take it in the hand. Mostly I take it in the mouth. That’s because of the strangeness of it, the good strangeness. I don’t generally let other people feed me, let alone grown men. Let alone priests. So, this meal is not like other…

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Bread and Circuses

By A.G. HarmonJune 16, 2011

I love television. I love movies. I love plays. Depictions of human endeavors, however expressed, through whatever dramatic vehicle, are as engaging as they are enlightening, as “sweet and useful” as any good Horace could want. Plus, the thespian arts have the ruddy hue of populism about them. Even the simplest soul, intimidated by letters…

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