EnlightenNext London has created a summer festival that is going to be a flat out celebration of philosophy, dance, music, and Spirit–a tantalizing and uplifting combination designed to make the spirit soar. It’s the Midsummer Renaissance Festival on July 30-31. Most of the EnlightenNext editorial team will be there to engage in dialogue and interviews with some extremely fascinating people. On July 30, I will be interviewed by Lee Chalmers–Lee is both a business consultant, a champion for women (check out her latest post in HuffPo UK), and is edging her way into politics. We’re calling the talk “Women Creating the Future.”
On July 31, I’ll be in dialogue with University of Bristol theologian Dr. Ursula King. Ursula has an expertise in the work of Pierre Teilhard de Chardin–a Jesuit priest and paleontologist who was one of the 20th C.’s most authentic and powerful voices of a new, evolutionary spirituality. Ursula always transmits a palpable enthusiasm–which literally means divine inspiration–for humanity’s spiritual evolution. Our dialogue takes for its title a line echoing Teilhard: “Discovering Fire for the Second Time.” The “fire” that Tielhard refers to is a particular kind of love, or Eros, that burns from the Divine into Creation. In fact, in the audio below, Ursula recites Teilhard’s quote in an interview that I did with her in 2009 about her book, The Search for Spirituality where we speak together about the evolutionary fire that has brought us to where we are today.
What I particularly appreciate about Ursula is her impatience with retro ideas of spirituality–trying to take the deep wisdom from the past and stick it, unchanged, into the present. She’s not against the great religious traditions, but sees that they have to be updated for our times. And I completely agree with her about the need for a world-embracing spirituality that is not at all divorced from life and that calls us to evolve our humanity. I hope that our dialogue on July 31st points us in that direction!
Well, that’s just a taste of what’s to come. If you are in the UK at the end of July, please come and say hello, and check out this vibrant midsummer scene!