Friday, December 14, 2007

my dog, my spiritual director

I provide private spiritual direction for a number of directees. Although I'm called the director I make it clear that I'm not directing anything. the primary relationship is between the directee and the divine wisdom source, however they theologize it. My role is to listen to the directee talk about that relationship and to reflect with them on what the wisdom source might be communicating and how the directee might respond.

I took my dog for a long walk today. We walked down the hill from my house, all the way around the lake and back, about three miles. The weather was chilly but not uncomfortable. As we walked and I tracked my thoughts I enjoyed what is for me a prayerful time of communion with my sense of the divine. And as I noticed my dog trotting along beside me, it occured to me that she was providing for me much the same service that I provide for my directees. She was most of all a silent but friendly companion. I do talk a little more in my spiritual direction sessions than she does on our walks but primarily it's my job to let the divine speak to the directee, not to monopolize the conversation myself.

And, in that it is primarily her need to take a daily walk that motivates me to pursue this particular spiritual practice, she also provides the same sort of encouragement and accountability to the spiritual journey that I offer to my directees.

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