Also, I'm reading something really different--The Blue Sapphire of the Mind, Notes for a Contemplative Ecology by Doug Christie--and finding in it a wonderful mix of inspiration, helpfulness and challenge!
But I haven't felt competent to transpose Christie's insights into some kind of shared experience with mindfulness and contemplative prayer.
The gist of the book is that Our Time is calling us to deepen our attention and connection to the natural world.
Calling us to cultivate a contemplative awareness of all things natural so we can begin to undo this sense of being separate from the rest of Creation that we suffer from.
It is from this deeper connection that we will be sustained by nature's beauty and power AND become more empowered to do more to slow the destruction of God's beautiful earth.
Here's a sample:
…The shared sense that the ecological crisis (which is also a cultural, social, and political crisis) we are facing in this moment is at its deepest level spiritual in character… means our response to this crisis will require of us nothing less than a spiritual transformation.
To speak of an ecological spirituality or spirituality that is informed by intimate contact with and feeling for the natural world can and will mean many different things in the present cultural moment. But a common feature of spiritual practice is a deepening awareness of oneself as existing within and responsible for the larger whole of the living world.
One attempt to express this broad and diffuse understanding of spirituality defines it as: “the experience of conscious involvement in the project of life-integration through self-transcendence toward the ultimate value one perceives.” (Sandra Scheiders)
Something similar can be said about the notion of “lived religion,” an idea that is coming to have increasing importance for helping us understand the creative and eclectic strategies which human beings imply to discover and express spiritual or religious meaning in their lives. In practice, such strategies often reflect an open and flexible relationship to religious traditions, a willingness to hold apparently conflicting or paradoxical views in tension in the search for a meaningful way of being in the world.
…Spiritual practices are often undertaken by persons and communities in order to achieve freedom from harmful, compromising attachments and to create the climate in which it becomes possible to adopt a more open, loving disposition toward others and the world. Such practices often lead to a serious engagement with and critique of fundamental social, cultural, and economic values that are perceived as tearing at the very fabric of life and community.