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Encountering Our Humanity – Ottawa, August, 2016

A vibrant program is planned for Encountering our Humanity, an inter-generational, interdisciplinary conference taking place in Ottawa, Canada from August 7-14, 2016.

Complementing this conference will be a gathering of the Section for the Spiritual Striving of Youth in North America intended for those interested in working together on themes of rights, justice and aesthetic education.  Throughout the week, we will interweave focused youth work and richly integrated conference experiences. In this way we intend to contribute to an intergenerational and interdisciplinary atmosphere throughout the week-long event.

The Youth meeting begins one day before, on Saturday August 6 at 5 pm.  With twenty four hours before the conference kicks, we will take the opportunity to meet, bond and explore shared questions.

On Sunday evening, we will jump into the rest of the conference life complete with research presentations, artistic workshops, lectures, panel discussions and performances.   Please have a look at the website for more details about the week and consider submitting a research presentation to present at the conference. This is an exciting opportunity to explore and cultivate rich spiritual research in the world today.  What better way to create bonds that last eternally!

Logistics: We have twenty places in a college residence donated and can arrange more if necessary (rooms will be shared by two people, bring a sleeping bag with you).  Our meals for the week will be prepared ourselves, using the college residence kitchen.

Finances: The estimated costs for the week are $100 for our food and $200 to register for the Encountering Our Humanity Conference.  $100 is recommended as a donation towards a scholarship fund for those who need financial support.  This makes $400 in total.

Travel funds, and scholarships are available by request.

Participation is welcome on all levels:  Join our planning group, spread the word, let us know if you want to come or get involved.  Contact us at aripaulster@gmail.com and register at: http://tinyurl.com/zw3bobq
To learn about the larger conference visit encounteringourhumanity.ca

Passion For Encountering Our Humanity

By Ariel-Paul Saunders

“With the Encountering Our Humanity conference approaching in just a couple of months, I feel called to write about my interest in this conference and my hopes for what it can inspire.

I have been working with the collegium of the School for Spiritual Science in North America for the past couple of years, exploring what it looks and feels like to come together between ages and disciplines with a common interest in spiritual research at our centre.  This is a space where individuals working in the areas of: fundamental human questions, visual arts, performance arts, literary arts, natural science, social science, medicine, biodynamic agriculture, and education can all meet and work together. It has been a sometimes confusing experience, yet always enriching, and filled with life energy.

I hope we will have the opportunity to do this in Ottawa in August.  I see the possibility of creating a space together there where we can meet each other in new ways, with the question and potential of interdisciplinary spiritual research alive between us.  To truly Encounter Our Humanity, we must cultivate the capacities to see what lies before us.

To truly experience what lies before us, we must know not only what the tail of the elephant feels like, but also the head, the heart, the eyes, the nose.  We must join together to build a picture of the elephant and inspire one another to look again and to look differently.  In this way, we can create a culture of spiritual research which is truly interested in the complete nature of things and thus in love with the world around us.

Over the seven full days of this conference, we will explore the multitude of human disciplines described above through lectures, discussion groups, artistic work, research presentations and artistic performances.  Each day has its own theme, allowing us to look from a different angle at the full scale of human life.  See the full program here!  

This is a large scale opportunity to meet each other in the spirit of curiosity and openness.  It is easy to fall into separation, getting busy in one domain of life and missing the opportunity to connect across disciplines, geographic areas or age groups.  We need opportunities to step outside of the community of practice that is familiar to us.  The opportunity and hope is that through interweaving our lives in new ways, we can also discover new pathways for research and inspiration.

As creative beings in the 21st century, we are heirs to a rich legacy.  With these gifts comes the challenge of finding our way towards new forms of learning and new paths to contribute to our evolving world.  While striving to maintain the integrity of our inherited gifts, we must also penetrate and transform them into inspiration that is connected to the time and space we each inhabit.  To do this requires active research and a community of friends who can challenge and inspire us.  We need to look at what we have been given with new eyes, from different perspectives.

If you are able, please consider joining us for a fun, nourishing and inspiring week together this coming August in Ottawa.”

For more informations click here.