At Lawrence we understand spirituality to be the awareness of our essential connection to self, others, mystery (awe) and the natural world. Spiritual life exists for all persons and in each of the religious traditions. The awareness of our connections show up in daily life and in extraordinary moments. Here you will find opportunities to experience connection in community and on your own time.
A good Sensory Walk can bring you to center while simultaneously allowing pathways to emerge. Listen to the sound of nature under your feet. Listen to the sounds of the city. Listen to the sounds of the water. Listen to your own footsteps. Feel what's under your feet. Feel the temperature around you. Feel the texture of trees or buildings. Feel the water or ground. Look at the different colors around you. Look for what changed this season. Look at neighborhood murals or light on the water. Smell the air around you. Smell the trees. Smell the water. Smell fires or cooking in the area. Taste the air as you breathe in and out. Taste a beverage when you return home.
1) Locate an area to explore. This can be a path, a park, a place near a river, lake or ocean, or just around the neighborhood.
2) Distance with a friend. For both community and safety you might want to bring a friend on this adventure, or at least tell someone what you're doing and where you're headed.
3) Engage your senses. See examples of ways to engage your senses.
4) Share with others. Post on the LU Spirit Space Facebook or Instagram page about how you engaged in the sensory walk.
Borrowing from Tibetan prayer flags, the Center for Spiritual and Religious Life invites you to express what you are grateful for by creating and contributing a flag to a living, breathing kinetic journal of our thanks, appreciations and hopes. Tibetan prayer flags typically carry mantras (sacred words) for peace, compassion, good fortune, strength or wisdom. They are an essential part of Tibetan Buddhism and can be found over mountain passes and along mountain ridges. We hope each flag will be created in the artists own style, then hung outside in our new garden space, its words and sentiment dissolving into the wind and being spread to all whom the wind touches
On campus students, faculty and staff – While this is available, materials and instructions to create and hang your flag are provided in the Center for Spiritual and Religious Life, your residence halls, and Warch Center. Your ID will grant you access.
Remote students, faculty and staff – Feel free to share what you are grateful for through this form (written words, poetry, lyrics, images, drawings), and a staff member will transfer to a flag to hang in community with the collaborative piece.
Meditation By focusing on your breathing and clearing away unnecessary thoughts, you open yourself to the potential of being more centered, focused, and intentional. Tibetan Buddhist meditation can be experienced at Lawrence and is frequently led by a campus professor who's scholarly work directly lends itself to this contemplative worship practice. Check the LU calendar for options.
Large Group meetings with LCF The Lawrence Christian Fellowship meets Wednesdays during term to celebrate their faith, support one another, and engage in activities that support community. Students and staff are invited to connect with LCF for other meeting offerings including Small Group, or meetings for athletes, among others.
Jumma practiced on campus at noon on Fridays, Jumma is observed in honor of a holy day of the week, to bring about forgiveness, to be heard by Allah, and to make special prayers. It is a time for prayer within and for the community. Prayer space (and prayer rugs) available at the Center for Spiritual and Religious Life, or pray on your own. Choose the experience that benefits you most.
Shabbat on Fridays is hosted by the Hillel chapter of Lawrence and welcomes all who respect the honoring of this faith tradition. Shabbat frequently occurs in the living room of the Center for Spiritual and Religious Life, but also occasionally finds a home at other locations on or near campus as students, staff and faculty come together in support of one another.
Catholic Mass is held once a month and is celebrated by the priest of a local parish. Mass is open to the Catholic and non-Catholic community. A light meal generally follows the service. Please note that this practice has been temporarily suspended due to Covid-19 restrictions.
Taize' worship services on campus are a partnership between Lawrence, All Saints Episcopal, and Memorial Presbyterian churches. These contemplative worship opportunities are ecumenical Christian services that follow a rhythm of simple chants, silence, and scripture. Meditative and mindful, the candles and silence allow for centering and listening.
The Office of Spiritual and Religious Life is regularly seeking students who can assist in creating the musical components of the service or read in English or another language. If you are interested in becoming a Taize' intern, look for postings on Handshake or contact our office. All services are open to the public.
Faith specific worship services also available on campus and in the surrounding community.
(Temporarily suspended) Practices in Attention are activities within the space that are always present and available for students, staff, or faculty to take advantage of. They encourage exactly as the name indicates...practice. We provide free form manipulation of clay, plus string, beads and tools for bracelets. Pencils for coloring, journals for writing...new items added and rotated regularly. Here you can transfer your energy in new ways, fail, assess, and start again if necessary.
Contemplative practices come in many forms. Lawrence provides opportunities for guided contemplation on campus.
Physically Distanced Yoga is available weekdays and is open to Lawrentians and community.
Meditation By focusing on your breathing and clearing away unnecessary thoughts, you open yourself to the potential of being more centered, focused, and intentional.
Buddhist Meditation Tibetan Buddhist meditation can be experienced at Lawrence and is frequently led by a campus professor who's scholarly work directly lends itself to this contemplative worship practice.
Deep Listening Join the Lawrence deep listening community and learn how to deeply experience the world through the art of listening—through sound, through movement, through memory.
Deep Listening is a contemplative practice of hearing in which we are fully present with what is happening in the moment without trying to control or judge it. It stimulates collaborative thinking. We let go of our inner clamoring and our usual assumptions and listen with respect for precisely what is being heard. No experience needed. Come listen.
Labyrinth Walking is the ancient practice of moving contemplation. Follow the single path as it winds toward the center, following your intention. Sit in stillness until you are read to travel outward - finding clarity and renewed focus through the journey. If you don't have time to travel to the Labyrinth on the ground of First Congregational UCC (next to Alexander gym), then join Dean Morgan-Clement on a virtual walk.
Sustainable Spirituality This workbook is designed to help you begin a lifelong practice of reflection, intention, and goal setting for your spiritual life. Spiritual health is essential to a lifetime of wellbeing. Regardless of belief or tradition, connection to self, others, mystery (awe), and the created world is a key component in our ability to be creative, balanced, and resilient. Setting an intention and creating a sustainable spirituality plan is key to navigating challenges and maximizing successes.
Faith based observances are an important connection to religious community and a marker of identity within our diverse community. Folks will be observing privately or with others at many times during the year. This can be a good opportunity to support others and to expand your awareness. Our spiritual holidays calendar offers a glimpse of the religious diversity here at Lawrence.
If you are planning to observe your own faith based holidays, plan ahead and speak with with professors. Lawrence faculty are very supportive of student's faith based observances and welcome a conversation about manage academic commitments when religious observances are held. Students are encouraged speak with their professors and may also contact one of the deans in our office for support or information.
When a world class conservatory is right on campus, you can't help but put music with movement. At an Open Movement Jam anyone can sing dance, play and make music. Practice with your ensemble, improvise, and bravely connect.
Lunch and conversation is offered for Lawrence employees on the fourth Friday of each month when classes are in session. This luncheon offers a space for the staff and faculty to share personal experiences around a specific topic, enjoy a presence of community outside of the classroom or office, and connect over a simple soup and salad. No reservation required.
All lunches will start at noon email us at email@example.com to request the zoom link.