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Ain’t We Got Soul. Political, Religious, and Transcendent Features of Soul Care. Sessions. 1 st –Political, religious, and transcendent realms of soul care 2 nd –Healthy and sick souls 3 rd –Care of one’s soul. Premises. Embodied Relational Shaped by time Shaped by culture

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Ain’t We Got Soul

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Ain’t We Got Soul

Political, Religious, and Transcendent Features of Soul Care


Sessions

  • 1st –Political, religious, and transcendent realms of soul care

  • 2nd –Healthy and sick souls

  • 3rd –Care of one’s soul


Premises

  • Embodied

  • Relational

  • Shaped by time

  • Shaped by culture

  • Complex & varied


Flourishing of the Soul

  • Individual and shared experiences of being alive and real.

    • Meaning and meaningfulness

    • Purpose and purposefulness

    • Immanence and transcendence

    • Agency and surrender

Embodiment

Relationality

Time

Culture

Complexity


Political Realm

  • Orders social relationships for the sake of human flourishing

  • Aim and function of the polis is justice

    • Justice is founded on recognition and treatment of the Other as person.

    • Justice is founded on repair of relationships of misrecognition (impersonalization & depersonalization)


Political Realm

  • Virtue

    • Phronesis—practical wisdom

      • Acknowledge and preserve the dignity of other human beings

      • The labor of emotional intelligence in encountering the Other


Political Realm

  • Ministry education

    • Student & supervisor

    • Traditions of care & justice

  • Contexts of care of souls


Religious Realm

  • Foundation and purpose of religion—community & communion (fellowship)

  • Virtues—love and hospitality


Religious Realm

  • For one human being to love another human being: that is perhaps the most difficult task that has been given to us, the ultimate, the final problem and proof, the work for which all other work is merely preparation…. Love does not at first mean merging, surrendering, and uniting with another person…. Rather, it is a high inducement for the individual to ripen, to become something in himself, to become world, to become world in himself for another’s sake. (Rilke)


Transcendent Realm

  • Encounter with and reverence of the wholly Other

  • Virtue—compassion

    • Compassion requires the double movement of surpassing and surrendering.


Summary

Political Realm

Aim—Justice

Virtue—Phronesis

Souls

Transcendent Realm

Aim—Encounter with

Wholly Other

Virtue—Compassion

Religious Realm

Aim—Community

Virtues—Love and Hospitality


Care of Souls

Sick and Healthy Souls


Soul Diagnosis

  • Caveats

    • Diagnosis involves both grasping and distorting the Other

    • Reductionism

    • Overlooking systemic contributions to sick & healthy souls

    • Diagnoses are culturally contingent

    • Diagnoses should be relational

    • Degrees of soul sickness (or health)


Soul Sickness

  • The distortion of various psycho-social capacities, which result in the loss or attenuation of persons’ subjective and intersubjective sense of aliveness, meaningfulness, purposefulness, and belonging.


Agency (subjective and intersubjective)

Freedom

Spontaneity

Passion

Authorship/Authenticity (vocation/avocation)

Accountability

Distortions of Agency

Bondage/Compulsions/Obsessions/Addictions/Passivity

Rigid structure & control of the future/fear and denial of the past

Indifference/Killing off desire/Anhedonia

Acquiescence/Submission (versus surrender)/Reactive or rebelliousness/False self

Blame/Victim identity/Denial/Dissociation

SICK SOULS

HEALTHY SOULS


Emotional Intelligence

Recognition and appropriate articulation of one’s feelings

Recognition and containment of the Other’s emotional experiences

Repair of emotional dis-ruptions

Distortions of Emotional Intelligence

Lack of…

Acting out one’s feelings

Avoidance/Dismissal

Rejection of self-reflection

SICK SOULS

HEALTHY SOULS


Play

Curiosity

Openness to Novelty

Imagination

Humor

Distortions of Play

Incurious

Boredom/Depression/Despair/Futility

Just the facts (Freud)/Overly rational

Rigidity

Defense against vulnerability

Fear of change/Nostalgia

Fear of difference

Fear of failure/Shame/Inadequacy

SICK SOULS

HEALTHY SOULS


Reverence

Irreverence

Awe

Distortions of Reverence

Overly serious

Overly cynical and skeptical (lack of hope)

Resentment/bitterness

Wishing

SICK SOULS

HEALTHY SOULS


Mystery

Acceptance of ambiguity and paradox

Acceptance and use of ignorance

Surrender to not-knowing

Distortions of Mystery

Certainty

Fear of doubt & ambiguity

Forms of subjugation

SICK SOULS

HEALTHY SOULS


Intimacy

Desire/Will for belongingness

Acceptance of the paradox of likeness in difference and difference in likeness

Desire and work for relational repair

Capacity for solitude

Distortions of Intimacy

Isolation/Compulsive togetherness

Identity politics

Pseudo repairs

SICK SOULS

HEALTHY SOULS


Categories of Diagnoses

AGENCY

REVERENCE

EMOTIONAL INTELLIGENCE

INTIMACY

MYSTERY

PLAY


Care for One’s Soul

  • Soul care and self care

  • Soul Care

    • Cultivating the capacities of reverence and awe

    • Possessing the capacity for self-reflective critique of one’s milieu

    • Withdrawal is for the sake of return


Care for One’s Soul

  • Context—work/ministry

    • How is the social context conducive to cultivating souls?

    • How is my ministry enlivening?


Care for One’s Soul

  • Political realm and phronesis—practical wisdom

  • Religious realm and love and hospitality

  • Transcendent realm and compassion


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