The purpose of this note, and my response to Ed Bastian’s note is to mention in this forum that I am getting many inquiries about the future of an interspiritual movement and of interfaith and interspiritual education from many groups (and many new to us) around the world. Approaches may be quite different as they emerge from different cultural settings.
It is obvious that we can, and are probably called to, serve as a hub for these requests so that (1) we can get to know new people and groups (2) we can introduce these new people and groups to each other and (3) we can field the big questions about such development among and across these new groups and persons in a serving way. That would seem consistent with the called on “interspiritual pioneers” of any sort, and certain the work that Bro. Wayne stressed to me.
Accordingly, I support the idea of our moving toward forming an Association, as suggested by Ed Bastian, step by step, little by little and with skill re: form and function. And I will be suggestion that OSLA, OUnI, ISD, Spiritual Paths and others of us begin (perhaps through some kind of in person and long distance learning colloquium/seminar or course at One Spirit create a forum for these groups to meet either other (like through skype and long distance sharing) which would also result in the sharing of each’s ideas for curricula and education directions, as well as ideas of the form and function of communities.
Re: the latter (experiments in community) in particular Rory and Adam’s work on New Monasticism is key (and Ed Geraty’s expertise on that) and the experience of community building in the Seminaries, One Spirit in particular.
New groups for us to begin to integrate in this way:
1) the Interfaith Seminaries [Big I is already doing this] 2) new interfaith and interspiritual communities 3) the Global Harmony Association and Center for Interfaith Harmony Education (Russia and 80 other countries [I joined their Board] 4) Presence International — www.presence.tv 5) The Spiritual Guild 6) Heart of the Healer 7) Contemplative Journal.com 8) new interfaith seminaries like All Paths in Los Angeles. These are just some or the new groups that are in touch with me.
This is where “the rubber will really start meeting the road” re: “moving toward movement”….
I agree with Kurt that the movement seems to be moving towards some sort of “association” to come into form, one that functions in a synergistic way and allows, encourages and supports the small unique initiatives everyone is a part of.
One vision for the association would be for it to organize one large “colloquium” each year which would bring together all the interested parties and allow them to present to each other, form synergistic collaborations, and help congeal some natural ‘working groups’ throughout the year. It could be the association’s purview to help support some of these individual initiatives, perhaps by helping to organize some smaller dialogues throughout the year, maintaining “virtual space” to keep people connected, and envisioning natural alliances and helping to make connections across groups.