The Christians of the early church adopted the Greek philosophy of separating body and soul. This was not the way of Jesus. Jesus believed, as other Jews, that God created us one being–body, soul, and mind. This six-week course will delve into this perspective. It is taught by instructors, Ben and Erica Berry–a couple who understand this integration at a deep spiritual level.
Following is an excerpt from Lesson 1:
Body and Spirit are intimately intertwined, and God seems to delight in our humanness. God breathed into us the breath of life (neshamah in Hebrew) and we came alive with God’s Spirit. God’s Spirit pours into us, and through us, so much that it’s difficult–even impossible–to see where our physical bodies end and Spirit begins. That is, if we pay attention. We experience things both as body and spirit. The challenge is to awaken to God within and around us as we engage the world with our bodies, moment by moment, breath by breath. When we do this, we can begin to acknowledge these everyday moments as a loving, continuous conversation between us and God, and we can truly begin to “pray without ceasing.”
This is our first course is offered in the area of Body Wellness and Spirituality and I am thrilled to share the expertise of the Berrys with you. The heart of the class is the daily assignments. This is where transformation takes place. Each lesson will have a few pages of narrative to lay the groundwork and then you will be given assignments for the week. The instructors suggest that you will reap the greatest benefit from the course if you have others sign up to do the assignments with you. You will also, however, be blessed by doing it alone.
The six-week class offers lessons on the following topics:
|Introduction to Spirituality of the Body
|Theological Grounding and History
Benjamin and Erica Berry are two of our instructors. Ben spent nearly a decade as a missionary in Japan. While in the middle of his missionary career, he earned a Masters in Missions from Abilene Christian University, and his interest in spiritual direction and the contemplative life began to deepen. He was ordained as a spiritual director through the Institute for Christian Spirituality’s 15-month program. Yoga became an integral part of Ben and Erica’s lives in 2012. They opened Berry Yoga Studio in 2013, offering yoga classes, guided meditations, and retreats. The connections of mind, body, and spirit learned through yoga and the birth of their children continues to fascinate and inspire him.
Erica graduated from York College with a degree in Biblical Studies and earned her 200-hour hatha yoga certification in 2012. She has been teaching yoga ever since, both in Japan where she and Ben worked as vocational missionaries, and now in Nebraska. Erica is a voracious reader and researcher when it comes to her passions: yoga, nutrition, gardening, and parenting. She and Ben have two boys, Beckett and Milo.
If you have questions, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org