Spirituality, Creativity and Wonder 

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Spiritual Direction
the Practice of Contemplative Listening

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How do you make sense of it all?
What are your questions? What are your challenges?

Do you think about why you're here?

Do you wonder if any of that even matters when you're so busy just working and paying the bills and trying to keep ahead?

But keep ahead of what?

And why? And how?

And where?

More Information

Spiritual Direction FAQ 

Spiritual Direction Guidelines

Maureen Carlson's Center for Creative Arts
102 Water  Street
Jordan, MN 55352
Appointments also accepted via Skype. 

Occasional appointments at prearranged locations.

Contact Info

Do You Ask Those Questions? 


I do.  But just in case you think that I have absolute answers to questions like these, I don't. The heartfelt questions are what matter to me, and the being engaged with life and love in the midst of the wondering.

It is the act of wondering, if I give it enough room, and if I listen, that turns into wonderment. To delight. To connection with Self. With that which is me but is more than me.

So, I keep wondering.

I wonder how each of us understand those things that matter in this journey that is our life.  I'm curious about that.

 Coupled with that is a curiosity over what makes me who I am and you someone different from me, with different ideas and beliefs and ways of being.

I believe that one way to understand this adventure is by telling our stories. Not made-up stories, but stories that are based in the nitty-gritty of our lives, on our memories, in our dreams. And listening as we do so. Listening to each other. Listening to ourselves. We may even listen ourselves into our own truth

Someone to Listen

But sometimes it takes a witness, a companion, a friend, to listen along with us in order to listen more deeply, to reflect back the words.

This is what happens in spiritual direction. I listen to you tell about what is important in your life. What you think about. What challenges you might be facing. And I ask questions to clarify, or to encourage you to go deeper. This isn't so that I will know your story, but so that you can hear yourself, hear the wisdom that you already know, that comes through to you from some place deep within that is part of your birthright as a Sacred Being in connection with All That Is, by whatever name that you call that Sacred Center.

Imagination Can Be a Doorway 

I oftentimes use creative arts activities with my spiritual direction clients. This is because it is my experience that the wisdom which comes from within, this numinous quality of the Sacred, which cannot be caged or photographed or put between the pages of a book, is often too elusive to grasp with the logical mind. With ordinary words. But a poem or a story,  perhaps even a parable or a fable or a fairytale, can sometimes illuminate these truths in ways that allow us to feel them and hold them and make them our own.

Then there are
visual ways for telling a story, the doodles, the line drawings, the scribbles, the meanderings of color across paper. It's all so exciting. Like a dream that we can hold in our hands, that puts feelings outside of ourselves so that we can look at them and start a dialogue. That we can make friends with. That will then release their power so that we can use that energy in our lives.

If any of this is interesting to you, I encourage you to use one of these creative arts options for telling your story, for connecting with your Spirituality, your Creativity and your Imagination.

If you'd like to know more, call me. We'll talk.

Until then, much peace and joy,
                                           Maureen Carlson


The Practice of Contemplative Listening

The kind of listening that I  practice is comtemplative listening. And I am using the word "practice" with intention! It is my natural inclination to say what I know, ask what I think and do my best to fix situations. I usuallly make sure that I get my two-cents worth said! But, that isn't how it works in spiritual direction. You do most of the talking. I do most of the listening. And there is room for the mystical presence of Spirit.

I'm not here to "fix you".  First of all, you aren't broken. If you did have a physical or mental condition that would benefit from the services of a health professional, then I would refer you. In most cases I could continue to do spiritual direction work with you if you chose to do so. Who knows better what it is that you need, what you know, who you are, what fits you, what you believe, what troubles you, than you?

Yes, you may not have the words all together on the surface, but your truth lies within you. I can't impose my way of being or thinking or feeling or believing on to you. But I can help you hear yourself. I can help you dig deeper, if and when you choose to do so. I can celebrate you and encourage you to embrace all that you already are. 

Each of us is a magnificent, Sacred creation. I can believe that for you until you are ready to believe it for yourself.

There is room for silence in this type of listening.

There is time and space for reflection.

There is opportunity for meditation.

There is time for slowing down and being centered in the now.

 There is room for Mystery.  For being OK with not having all of the answers. For breathing in to the questions. And listening. Always listening.


More Information

Spiritual Direction Guidelines       

Spiritual Direction FAQ 

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