December 2012 Newsletter

The Spiritual Naturalist SocietyMEMBER NEWSLETTER
December 2012
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As the end of 2012 approaches I’d like to wish all of you joyful holidays and a happy new year! 2013 will mark our first complete year since launching and we’re looking forward to wonderful things. We are continually adding more content to the archives and developing more programs. This month, we doubled our output of articles and will now aim for putting out about 2 per week. We’re going to be wrapping up our membership drive soon so if you haven’t already spread the word to like-minded friends and family, we’d appreciate encouraging them to become members as well. Of course, they can join or make donations anytime throughout the year too.

I would also love to hear from you! Please let me know how you’re doing in your practice, and how we’re doing – and feel free to give us ideas or suggestions any time.

Sincerely with love and thanks,

Daniel Strain
Executive Director


The following are some of the most recent pieces added to the membership’s growing archive of inspirational and educational materials. Please feel free to discuss what you think about these with the other members in the Society forum!

This month we’ve been able to add a treasure-trove of more in-depth materials on Stoicism from Michel Daw, DT Strain, and we’re happy to have an additional contributor: Dr. Jan Garrett, professor of philosophy at Western Kentucky University:

Stoicism as a Spiritual Path, Michel Daw
Introduction to Stoic Ethics, Jan Garrett
Values in Classical Stoicism (w/Chart), Jan Garrett
Classical Stoicism in a Nutshell, Jan Garrett
The Good, Evil, Virtuous, and Vicious, Houston chapter handout (PDF download)


Please join us on the forums to discuss spiritual naturalism!

Current topic:
How have you dealt with the issue of consumerism and the holidays?
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Articles the Society has publicly published recently, as part of our mission to help others by sharing helpful wisdom and practices for better lives. If you’d like to get notice of these as they are released, please subscribe to the Society blog by clicking here if you haven’t already.

Working ritual with the Center, Pt 1
Working Ritual with the Center, Pt 1
B.T. Newberg explains aspects of naturalistic ritual – why create special time and space? Why propose new techniques? What is ‘Center’?…

Giving and the holidays: making a change
Giving and the Holidays: Making a change
Does the way we celebrate the season of giving really help us to be more generous? Or, does it encourage materialistic values?

The Humanist concept of community
The Humanist concept of community
Jennifer Hancock shares what ‘community’ means to her tradition: Humanism. What does community mean to you, and what role does it play in your tradition or philosophy?

Wisdom hides in plain sight
Wisdom hides in plain sight
Thomas Schenk makes the case that we already have access to the wisdom we need for a good life…

Working ritual with the Center, Pt 2
Working ritual with the Center, Pt 2
B.T. Newberg concludes his essay on ritual center, explaining how we work with it, how it works psychologically, and what that means for naturalists…

Distractions to Spiritual Practice, Pt 3
Distractions to spiritual practice, Pt 3
In this third of a 4-part series, DT Strain describes the potential for academics to become a distraction to spiritual practice…


There are many stories, articles, and items of interest around the web from our partner organizations and others in which our members may be interested. If you come across an item of interest your fellow members may be interested in, please contact us!

Bernie Glassman’s Boots-on-the-Ground Secular Buddhism

Don’t forget, if you haven’t already you can like our page on Facebook or follow us on Twitter for more content and up-to-date info. You can also check out our Local Chapters page (here) to meet spiritual naturalists in person, or start hosting a local gathering if there isn’t yet one in your city by contacting us. Thanks so much for your kind support and your membership in the Spiritual Naturalist Society!