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Interfaith Spirituality for Christians

August 20 – September 28, 2018

Instructor: Dr. Ruth H. Judy, Sofia University
Course Fee: $200.00 (includes 2 CEUs)

In our modern, multi-cultural, USA, many of our neighbors may be practitioners of faiths other than our own. Eastern religions have brought to us an appreciation for meditation and many of us have been introduced to our own Christian heritage in spiritual formation. There are Christians whose yearning for God propels them to explore other religions and spiritual practices. These Christians are finding nuggets of insight and experiences through ways that may be non-traditional for Christians. Out of such experiences they are finding their relationship with God deepened. Frequently there is an increased appreciation of their own Christian faith. These experiences can be enriching as well as raising questions as to what these may mean for their faith,and their relationships with their family and their communities.

This six-week online course opens up conversation as to why Christians may discern a need to expand their understanding of what it means to be a Christian. We will explore different spiritual traditions and practices and how they might be integrated into our faith. We will also look at the challenges and gifts found along this journey of individuation. Each week will examine different aspects of this journey through readings, online discussions, and an experiential exercise. These experiential exercises will be from a variety of faith traditions. Through online discussions we will examine each week’s topic and how it might apply to ourselves, to our spiritual directees, or others with whom we do ministry. Each participant will also select one of five books, representing five different traditions, to immerse him or herself in throughout the course. While there are weekly deadlines, participants are able engage the class on their own schedules within each week. Plan to spend 3-4 hours per week to complete all aspects of the course.

Required Text: Ruth H. Judy (2012). Where My Soul Lives: Being a Christian Outside the Lines. Haworth, NJ: St. Johann Press. ISBN 978-1-937943-03-5

Select one of the following books for study and spiritual practices:

Coleman, M. (2006). Awake in the Wild: Mindfulness in Nature as a Path of Self-Discovery. Novato, CA: New World Library. ISBN 978-1-930722-55-2 (Nature)

Rahman, J. (2013). Spiritual Gems of Islam: Insights & Practices from the Qur’an, Hadith, Rumi & Muslim Stories to Enlighten the Heart & Mind. Skylight Paths. 978-1594734304. (Muslim)

Schachter-Shalomi, Z. (2005). Jewish with Feeling: A Guide to Meaningful Jewish Practice. Part 1. New York, NY: Riverhead Books. ISBN 1-57322-280-1 (Judaism)

Surya Das (1999). Awaking to the Sacred: Creating a Personal Spiritual Life. Parts 2 and 3. New York, NY: Broadway Books. ISBN 978-0-7679-0275-5 (Buddhist)

Thompson, M. (2014). Soul Feast: An Invitation to the Christian Spiritual Life. Louisville, KY: Westminster John Knox Press. ISBN 978-0-664-23924-4 (Christian)

Instructor: Ruth H. Judy, PhD is Associate Core Faculty at Sofia University (formerly the Institute of Transpersonal Psychology (ITP). She teaches on-line in the Global Master’s program, in the Spiritual Psychology specialization. Among other courses, she teaches Contemplative Mind, where students are offered a range of contemplative practices from various spiritual traditions.

Ruth has led numerous workshops on Christian meditation, women and spirituality, compassionate self-care, health and wellness, and the study of archetypes for personal and spiritual growth. She has worked in the fields of aging, grief, death and dying for many years and is co-author of several online courses including Creative and Conscious Aging, Spiritual Dimensions of Human Behavior, and Inquiry into Embodied Spirituality.

She received her doctorate from ITP in 1984. Her dissertation, A Journey through Infertility: A Mythological Perspective, explored women’s experience of infertility. Her first book, Fierce Longing: Women and Infertility was an outgrowth of this research. Following her love of interviewing people on personal life issues, her next book Where My Soul Lives: Being a Christian Outside the Lines is based on interviews with 50 women and men who see themselves as non-traditional Christians. This book is the foundational book for this course. Ruth’s third book, All My Money Says is Bye-Bye (an e-book), is in quite a different vein: a murder mystery featuring two newbie women sleuths. It was inspired by her experiences with her mother and aunt with dementia and the funny, poignant, and heart-breaking things they said and did in the nursing home.

You can withdraw from the course in writing via e-mail to Refunds will be provided according to this schedule:
  • Withdrawals received more than 45 days prior to the course's start date will receive 100% of the amount paid.
  • Withdrawals received between 44 to 30 days prior to the course's start date will receive 75% of the amount paid.
  • Withdrawals received between 29 to 16 days prior to the course's start date will receive 50% of the amount paid.
  • No refunds will be issued for withdrawals received 15 days or less before the course starts.