| Anne C. Williamson | Originally posted January 20, 2015

I'm sitting here listening to my husband try to teach our daughter how to calm down through breathing. The source of her exasperation: bread. She loves it and usually has to wait for it to toast and get smeared with peanut butter. This lapse in time often proves too much, and she begins to meltdown. Of course, her response is disproportionate - as her parents, at least one of our jobs is to make sure, as an adult, she doesn't erupt in tears at the bagel shop; but, I do relate to her passion, even admire it a little.   

This struggle echoes in my spiritual journey: I want peace, wholeness, the "undistracted state" as Buddhist teacher Pema Chödrön calls it, but I also fear this state will tamper my passion. I love bread too... er, I mean life and justice. Can we be both passionate about life and "zen"? It's confusing because both eastern and western spiritual philosophies have taught life itself is the distraction. But, isn't life also the joy? Isn't it the people and environments, the food and good fights that offer us meaning, that offer purpose? 

This is where I love when Pema Chödrön, in the below video, talks about being wide-awake. Yes, life can distract; this is undeniable. But, detoxing from these distractions doesn't mean the end of joy, passion, purpose. Instead, the undistracted state means we're wide-awake to experience life more deeply, to taste more acutely, to fight fairer, to love better. It's life #nofilter.


| Anne C. Williamson | - Originally posted January 11, 2015

Confession: It's been a tough week. Of course, I know full well, relatively speaking, it hasn't really been that tough; my family has the necessities: food, water, heat, Frozen on DVD. But, regardless, I've been stumbling this week, trying and failing to push beyond circumstances and the wonky way my mind sometimes works.

I believe these weeks find me occasionally for a purpose: they bring me to my knees, remind me life is not about control but surrender... in the best possible way. My heart feels small so I must break it open with a prayer of "help." I stop managing it all well enough, long enough to see grace again... to really need grace again.  

Beginnings can look like this. They often do. And, not just in late January. All year long we find ourselves slid back into old patterns, thoughts, distractions that then propel us to choose, once again, to begin again.

For me, this is one of the main reasons I crave deep, thoughtful, spiritual community. It often gives me more grace than I give myself, while at the same time, holds me accountable to the kind of life I want to lead. It is kind faces with whom I share my story, and wise perspectives I never would have heard on my own. It's the space to practice, to begin something new or for the umpteenth time. It's time set apart to c/Connect. 

This is what WAYfinding is for me and for many of you. I am so glad, and I look forward to kicking off another round of groups - of blessed discussions, experiences, sharing - this week!

There is always room for more voices at the table. If you're curious, consider checking-out a group this week - or in the weeks to come. Simply fill out this form. Groups this round meet:

Mondays, 7:30 – 9:00p – Mom’s Group (Meridian-Kessler) (Org. Facilitator: Lindsay)
Wednesdays, 11:30a - 1:00p (Meridian-Kessler) (Org. Facilitator: Rick)
Wednesdays, 7:00 – 9:00p (Downtown) (Org. Facilitator: Stew)
Thursdays, 7:00 - 9:00p (Meridian Hills) (Org. Facilitator: Jess)

Author’s 2019 Note: It’s interesting that much of the above blog applies to my experience this past week too - except Frozen has been replaced with Moana… Disney, you’re just too good! And yet, and this is gratifying to notice, this week was also not as hard as that week years ago, and I don’t think it has much to do with circumstances. I see the ways in which I am approaching life and my own “wonky mind” differently now. For example, I am teaching myself to not try and “push beyond” circumstances and the way my mind works sometimes but rather relax into them, allow them to be what they are, and notice, release, move from there. It’s subtle, and it’s helping. I share this because, first, and this is important: yea! And, second, the journey to one’s own spirit, to our True Self, does help. Who knows if we ever “arrive.” Lately, I’m thinking that’s not the point anyway. But, it seems to me, that when I follow my curiosity and creativity, my capacity for love and empathy - toward self and others and the Earth - and thus my capacity for joy does grow. It is not a straight line up in one direction but it is a moving toward, maybe a moving in that mysteriously also brings me more out than ever before. How nice to get this reminder. So, I thought I’d share it with you too. May it be so.


We'll be back January 6th with information about our upcoming WAYkids' program and winter adult WAYfinding round. If you'd like to save-the-dates, our WAYkids' program will begin Sunday, January 13th and meet every 2nd and 4th Sunday afternoon (4:00 - 5:30p) of the month (January - June). Our WAYfinding winter round will begin the week of January 21st.


| Anne C. Williamson |

A couple weeks ago, good friends invited us over to celebrate Hanukkah. After listening to the story behind this Jewish ritual and tradition, the candles were lite, prayers recited and songs sung. Then, as the menorah was carried to the window and placed there, we learned this piece of the tradition is about being open, publicly sharing one's beliefs, as well as bringing a little more light to the world.

I loved the whole thing. I think my girls did too; but, of course, there was the typical young children drama around who got to light which candles as well as ecstatic focus on the chocolate gelt soon to come. So, I didn't know how much had been understood and appreciated.

The next day, at our own home, as the light outside had nearly gone, I heard my 5 year old suddenly exclaim, "The Christmas tree! We need to light it so we can bring light to the world." My eyes still tear up. Something about that moment encompasses so much of what I hope for my children.... That when the darkness surrounds them, they would hold on to the magic, mystery and beauty ever present in this world too. That they would find joy and meaning in their own tradition while understanding, deeply, that all traditions share a loving s/Source and thus can reflect and enrich one another. That they would believe they are part of bringing light to the world, that their daily actions and loving being matter.

Depending on the stage of life and context in which we find ourselves, the holidays can look so different from year-to-year and person-to-person. I don't know the sadness you may be carrying now, or the joy. But, in my own Christian Advent tradition, each Sunday I light a candle for you. I hold the light in my heart, give it physical form with a match, wick and wax, and pray for my own, for my girls' and husband's, for our community's and for the whole world's well-being. I pray for peace on earth, and with a tiny flame, that it would begin (again and again) with me.



The fall round begins the week of September 10th and ends the week of November 5th. It's 8 weeks with a one-week break at the halfway point (groups will not meet the week of October 8th). This round will include a community week in late October.



Why gather in spiritual groups like these? Why gather for spiritual or religious reasons on Sundays or Fridays or whenever? What is the point? Does it do anything for us? For the world? What do we, as humans, need now, at this specific time in history, from these spaces? Can they deliver?

Join WAYfinding this fall as we explore these questions. Each week will begin with a possible answer, falling under one of three “macro” reasons for gathering: We gather because it helps. We gather to h/Hear s/Something deep and true. We gather to b/Be s/Something deep and true. Authors (and, for many, spiritual guides) Sue Monk Kidd, Parker Palmer, Brene Brown and Shawn Achor, among others, will be our teachers.

As always with WAYfinding, you will be encouraged and led to question, challenge, wonder, discuss and dive deep into your own experience. If you’ve ever been simultaneously drawn to and resistant to spiritual or religious gatherings, this will be a great round for you, helping you discover what is true for you and resting easier in it.

Hope to have your voice in the conversation this fall!


Mondays, 7:30 – 9:00p – Mom’s Group (Meridian-Kessler) (Facilitator & Host: Anne)
Tuesdays, 12:00 - 1:45p (Meridian-Kessler) (Facilitators & Hosts: Rotating**)
Wednesdays, 10:30a - 12:00p (Meridian-Kessler) (Facilitators: Carolyn & Rick; Host: Anne) (Childcare available; cost split between parents.)
Wednesdays, 7:00 – 9:00p (Irvington) (Facilitators & Hosts: Rotating**)
Wednesdays, 7:00 - 9:00p (Downtown) (Facilitator: Julie; Host: Stew)
Thursdays, 7:00 - 9:00p (Meridian Hills) (Facilitator & Host: Bob)

** Newcomers are not asked to facilitate or host. Of course, you’re welcome to, if you’d like. 



For those who can afford it, there is a cost with the WAYfinding experience. Each round we ask you make an investment in yourself of $50 - $150. It's a sliding scale; you pay what you can. And, if you can't pay, simply select our Scholarship Fund when signing up - that's all there is to it. Invest online here.

Or, you may become a sustaining member of WAYfinding by making a recurring donation of at least $30 per month. This option is not just an investment in yourself - all rounds are included - but in others. Your recurring donation (or quarterly/yearly, if you prefer) helps us sponsor new and existing participants, "get the word out," invest in public speakers and new programs, etc. You can learn more about our different investment levels here.