“ChI offers you an opportunity to become more fully connected with your spiritual sense and whatever you may call your higher power, and you leave the program with tools that you can use to help you on your way. And because it is interfaith, it gives you a sense of confidence and a sense of know-how and knowledge about the direction to go, and it just connects you with a platform from where to start. It gives you a sense of home, a place to belong, because you develop new relationships with people that you can call upon that you didn’t have before, and it doesn’t matter what they may call their higher power because the language is universal. I just love everybody at ChI . It is an amazing experience.”
AREAS OF STUDY
|Spiritual Direction (SD) Skills||The Spiritual Experience||World Religions||Personal Development & Integration|
|Definitions, varieties and history of SD||God’s presence in daily life||Native Traditions||Discerning one’s call|
|Cultivating Holy Listening||Spiritual Life Stories||Taoism||Rules & Ethics: Boundaries, confidentiality, and self-care|
|Directive and non-directive SD||Images of the Divine & their impact upon the spiritual life||Buddhism||Generational Issues in SD|
|Methods of Spiritual Discernment||Faith Styles & their impact on the SD process||Hinduism||Sexual Issues in SD|
|SD with the ill, Dying & Bereaved||Dark Night of the Soul||Islam||Establishing a business practice of SD|
|Dreamwork for Guiding Non-Religious People||Varieties of prayer and devotional disciplines||Zoroastrianism|
|Guiding Non-Religious People||Addiction and the Longing for Transcendence||Judaism|
|Group SD and Group Supervision||The archetypal spiritual journey||Christianity|
|Relationship, Generational, and Sexual Issues|
Four intensive learning modules for 5 days, Monday through Friday, from 9am to 4:30pm each day with occasional evening classes in Berkeley, CA. Although each module is different, each offers opportunities to practice deep listening, spiritual discernment and essential spiritual direction skills. Attendance is required on all days.
Each student is required to have had a minimum of 3 spiritual direction sessions prior to beginning the program. In addition, during the course of studies, students are required to complete 30 sessions with an approved spiritual director. Spiritual directors must be approved by the program director. Spiritual Directors are hired independently of the school and are compensated for their services directly by the student. To download the Course Catalog, which includes the above information, click here.
Students travel to Berkeley, California, to attend intensive learning modules that focus on practical skills, spiritual direction competencies and guiding people of particular faith traditions. Although each module is different, all of them contain elements of spiritual direction, spirituality, and personal development. During each module a team of core and quest faculty guides students in an integral learning experience, incorporating theoretical, practical, and creative elements. Class content at the modules flows between didactic and experiential artistic and reflective modalities. Information about travel is here.
In addition to intensive learning modules, students work independently on reading, practicum, and spiritual practices. They communicate with faculty and classmates via email and/or social media.
ChI ’s curriculum has been designed to meet the growing need for inter-religious understanding as a tool for serving the diversity of our world today. Our educational approach is one of multi-modal education, always reaching for the balance of engaging the body as well as the mind and spirit, so that our students may learn to their greatest capacity, while having useful skills and tools with which to serve others.
In addition to recognizing the varieties of faiths and culture in our student body, the curriculum is designed based on the knowledge that individuals learn and receive information in a variety of ways. Renowned educator Howard Gardner, author of Frames of Mind: The Theory of Multiple Intelligences, identified a variety of styles through which individuals learn.
Over our years of teaching, we have discovered what Gardner calls “multiple Intelligences,” and what we call “ways of knowing.” Some of us know the world through movement or singing; these are kinesthetic or musical learners. We may know the Divine through walking or singing—or, like the Sufi Dervishes, as we turn or dance as a form of prayer. ChI has found that the most effective education begins in the cultural comfort zone of didactic presentation and providing foundational context, as a strong framework for study and understanding. Subsequently we build on this foundation, weaving all the elements of our program together through experiential and creative learning modalities.
This educational methodology of interweaving promotes an exciting learning environment and encourages individual ways of knowing—as well as serving as a foundation for understanding differences in the ways that others come to know themselves and their relationships to family, community, and Divinity.