Along with 50 people from as far away as Toronto, Ontario and Santa Barbra, California, I am presently camped out at Cowichan Lake Research Station Conference Centre with Cynthia Bourgeault.

We are attending the Contemplative Society’s ( Wisdom School, studying the Christian doctrine of the Holy Trinity, based on Cynthia’s book The Holy Trinity And The Law Of Three As might be expected, she brings an unusual perspective to this challenging and paradoxical ancient doctrine of Christian faith.

Lake Cowichan

Lake Cowichan

Cowichan Lake has no WiFi access so I am unable to post notes from Cynthia’s addresses. I am home now for part of today to officiate at Sunday services, so will post a few introductory notes from Friday evening. There should be more notes to come in the days ahead.

The Holy Trinity And The Law Of ThreeCynthia Bourgeault

Introduction to the Wisdom School

Wisdom is not knowing more but knowing deeper. It means knowing with more of who you are.

We aim in our time together at a Wisdom School to achieve a meaningful conscious intentional circulation, balancing prayer, work, and study in which it is possible for the student to absorb but not get trapped in information. There is a place for the cognitive input but we attempt to balance and integrate it with mindful work and deep prayer. The content is only one component. Don’t get caught in the ideas.

Our goal is to build inner attunement through mindfulness practice. So we will be performing physical tasks with an inner task attached so that the practical work itself becomes a means of conscious awakening.

How am I present now?

We want to see that everything is an opportunity for learning, by responsibly managing the movement from deep silence to embodied action. We are working, not simply to be helpful, but to ground the information we are taking in our bodies.

We want to get away from the “tank-up”/”tank-down” movement where we go away to get filled up and then return to our regular lives and draw down that reservoir we have built up until we are utterly drained again and need to flee the world in order to “tank-up” again. We want to find a way to carry the tank with us on our back.

Take any conditions you find yourself in and make them your monastery.

A lot of the real work that goes on in a Wisdom School is when you are able to hold a certain energy of being.

Chanting along with content in-put, silence, and mindful work will be part of our time together. You will find that the same things that block you from your true voice, are the things that block you from your true self.

The physical work we do in the Wisdom School is never done for the purpose of getting the job done. The point is to confront our automatic attitudes, to see where we fall into unconscious behaviours and choose to awaken to the task.

We aim to become present in a different way and to attend to what can be seen in ourselves as we work. When you are able to be present is when you are best able to absorb spiritual teaching.

Bring yourself more fully to what you are doing in the present moment.

We are developing the skill of moving promptly from one now to the other. When you learn that skill you will have the silence you need.

In silence we can open ourselves to a deeper intimacy with reality.