Skip to Content

Category Archives: personal stories

Finding Direction and Purpose in Times of Transition

I discovered the Center for Courage & Renewal through a couple of odd coincidences. My own 40-year reunion class of Carleton College, 2016, had sent out Parker Palmer’s book Let Your Life Speak. While I read the book and was intrigued and interested, it was really a second nudge—or coincidence or sign—that gave me the push  Continue Reading »

Finding Tempo Giusto

I’m what you would call a typical morning person. My energy peaks before noon. For night-owls, this behavior is a total mystery. I’m equally in awe of those who are able to have intellectual conversations after 9 o’clock pm. I prefer watching the sun rise. Ideas flow easily pre-dawn, and I treasure the spaciousness of uninterrupted  Continue Reading »

Bridging the Gap Between Immigrant Farmworkers and University Students

We are fortunate to have an Inner Life of Teaching & Leadership cohort at Cornell University, a circle of trust that meets monthly for faculty and staff. We have two cohorts at any one time – one year-long experience for new applicants and another into which participants can flow after that first year. Mary Jo  Continue Reading »

Faithfulness To Our Profession as Teachers

Jennifer Cheatham, superintendent of schools in Madison, Wisconsin, reflects on teacher activism, the importance of reflection, and a recent conversation she had with Parker Palmer.

Lessons in Scarcity and Abundance with a Deer

We have the best soil in New York State. In fact, it’s literally the state soil. I didn’t know there was such a thing until we moved into our place 17 years ago. At that time, our neighbor would wander over and say, “Our soil is rich. It’s almost too rich.” I’d smile. How can  Continue Reading »

Poised Between the Known and Unknown

“If you find yourself poised between the known and the unknown, between what has been and what comes next, we invite you to join us for a weekend retreat to explore the theme of threshold.” That was me, poised between the known and unknown. In 1994 my wife, Melinda Shaw, and I founded the Puget Sound  Continue Reading »

Wanna’ know how to cope with climate change? Start with changing yourself.

Courage & Renewal facilitator Mardi Tindal reflects on her calling to be a voice for climate change, whether in her official capacity that took her to the Paris COP21 climate talks, or in her more recent role in life as an elder.

Getting by with a little help from my…circles of trust

It’s been a tough month, one of those squeeze points in which life throws a number of curveballs. I can juggle like the best of them and am reasonably adept at managing the difficulties that hit from time to time. It’s hard, though, when they come all at once. Without offering too much information, the  Continue Reading »

Honest and Open Questions as a Spiritual Practice

When I first began participating in circles of trust, the part that intrigued me most was the practice of asking honest and open questions. How interesting. What a revelation! I began to witness just how many interactions were trimmed by the offering of advice or a ‘helpful’ suggestion, after which, the dialogue was over. So  Continue Reading »

Finding Chutzpah to Attend to Anger and Grief

This blog features an article originally published on Kolbe Times. With Dan’s gracious permission, we share this article with you today. As I write this, my life is strangely on hold for three months. I can’t say I am comfortable with the feeling. It comes down to May 9, 2017: the day that the province  Continue Reading »