As we are in the middle of admission season for our next 18-month cohort for spiritual companionship training, we thought we’d write a bit about what is going on behind the scenes at SGTI. Lifelong activist, educator, and researcher, Dena Simmons encourages, challenges, and inspires us: "If we don't apply SEL [social and emotional learning] with an anti-racism lens, SEL risks turning into white supremacy with a hug." While her statement is not about spiritual companionship, we could easily substitute spiritual companionship for SEL: If we don't apply spiritual companionship with an anti-racism lens, spiritual companionship risks turning into white supremacy with a hug.
As a priority and practice, we are committed to being an anti-racist and anti-oppressive institution that continually strives to identify and dismantle inequity and unjust systems. We are committed to the process of interrogating and decolonizing our curriculum, policies, practices, and procedures and to the ongoing professional and personal development that supports and amplifies compassionate-sacred activism, respect, equity, and hospitality. We, the co-founders/co-directors, acknowledge that we live on the appropriated homelands of Indigenous peoples. We are committed to building relationships with Indigenous peoples and nature of their homelands. It is important to us that we increase our spectrum of perspectives: We acknowledge that we are in process with all of our commitments, and as an interfaith and interspiritual institution, we will strive to build sustainable relationships with BIPOC and the land in which we live.
It is our deep desire to have ongoing conversation about race, class, ability, gender and other identities as well as their intersections and to incorporate critical discussions within our curriculum. In addition, we strive to practice contemplation, reflection, and self-examination related to these issues, opportunities, and our commitments. And we continue to nurture prior relationships within our communities and seek out new ones for collaboration and connection.
Today, we are pleased to offer a sampling of poetry and artwork submitted by one of our students in the "Interfaith and Interspiritual Wisdom" training program. Students are always offered the opportunity to express their learnings in creative ways. Enjoy this entry by Deb W. in completion of the module on Islam.
"Curious and Afraid"
About this blog
Deepening the understanding, practice and importance of spiritual guidance-companionship across traditions.
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