One year ago, the world seemed to shut down. The Covid-19 pandemic forced us to change our lives and livelihoods in ways both small and profound. Now, as vaccines are distributed and we slowly start to reopen, we should ask ourselves: what have we learned? What have we lost? What will life look like on the other side of the pandemic?
To address these questions head on, we invite you to join us online this summer for our new program, Religious Resources for Living Beyond Crisis, to be held Sunday, June 6, to Thursday, June 10.
In this four-day program, we will explore religious resources to make meaning of the many injustices the pandemic revealed. We will also turn our attention to the interlocking and ongoing issues of climate change and global inequality and explore ways to personally integrate and respond to these challenges.
We will start with a short introductory session on Sunday night. Monday through Thursday will consist of half-day sessions where some of Harvard’s leading scholars will introduce ways how the spiritual, moral, and historical lessons of the world’s religions can help us both to understand our global predicament and to create new ways of responding to it:
Professor David Carrasco, remembering the mass shooting in El Paso, Texas, in 2019 together with artist Ellen Elmes, will ask us to explore the significance of the intentional act of "remembering" and the human necessity and importance of such remembering in these times of ours.
Professor Terry Tempest Williams will give us an opportunity to explore how "bearing witness" is not a passive act, but one of conscience and consequence. To not avert our gaze from all that is breaking our hearts can become a generative practice that invites us to engage with hard things rather than withdraw from them. Writing is another form of bearing witness. Participants will be given time to write and share a short piece within this workshop as we bear witness to the pause of this pandemic that is now a place.
Dean Melissa Bartholomew will turn our attention to how we can contribute to healing the wounds of the world that we inherit. Through the framework of remembering history, spiritual resistance, and restorative justice we will explore how to apply the values of love, empathy, and interdependence to create conditions for healing and forgiveness..
Professors John P. Brown and Charles Hallisey will ask us to explore together on where we should focus our individual and collective attention to find and/or create the breakthroughs we need for the change and innovation the times demand.
The engaging presentations will be followed by small facilitated meaning making breakout sessions where participants will discuss what they heard and reflect on what it means to them personally. Optional spiritual practices will be offered before we start the day. These practices will include yoga, contemplative prayer, Buddhist meditation, and AfroCuban dance.
Meaning Making Facilitators
Ashley Lipscomb, MDiv '20, Co-founder & CEO of the Institute For Anti-Racist Education, Inc.; Tom Maridada, MDiv '21, President & CEO at BRIGHT New Leaders for Ohio Schools; Rev. Laura Tuach, MDiv '01, Assistant Director of Field Education, Lecturer on Ministry
At a time when the earth continues to shift beneath us, ground yourself in the history of human survival and in the insights of the world’s religious traditions to reflect together on what should come next.
- Email us
- Call to schedule a conversation with Alison Harvey, program manager: 617.650.0615
In a virtual information session held on April 20, faculty director Charlie Hallisey walked through the program’s themes and Laura Tuach explained the purpose and goals of the Meaning Making sessions. Watch the video below!