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Sacred Journey into Religious Communities
Integrated Seminar 101
Scheduled of Class Topics, Assignments and Readings
Tentative, Subject to Change
August 21 thru September 4 - Class Topic: Equipping Ourselves for the Journey (5)
Topics: Starting point for your journey: re-telling your own journey.
A. Who are you? Where did you come from? Why are you here? Where are you going?
B. What do we seek to understand? How should we approach that which we seek to know? What should we do with that which we come to know?
"Huckleberrying within the Tin Shed" (ol), for critically interpreting religious symbols and scared texts, and re-constructing texts for others; issues of ethnocentrism and bias; an appreciation of another's point of view, and the example of the Burnt Face Story Text (ol); and the difference between a theological and academic approach to the Journey. Head and Heart Ways of Knowing: Issues of theological/spiritual and academic/scientific epistemologies. Nature of Religious Symbols and Stories - as "Texts": art and design, architecture, ritual behavior, narrative, speech, song, etc.; sacred boundaries and transcendence. Traveling the Many and Differing Paths, and the Mutually Exclusive.
Humanities and Social Sciences: "Sailing the Four Cs"
Pilgrimage Edicts Begin immediately
Frey and Elders' Huckleberries: Stories from the American Indian Experience (A Methodology for Interpreting Religious Texts): pp.1-91 on an Indigenous epistemology and ontology, and implications for a methodology for engaging, interpreting, evaluating and writing story texts; pp. 124-31 doing ethnography Humanities style; and 148-54 term glossary. Begin immediately
Humanities, Social Sciences and Indigeneity, and their Integration - An Approach (reiterates key points from Huckleberries) Begin immediately
"Burnt Face," as told by Tom Yellowtail in Frey's Stories That Make the World, pp 108-22 By August 30
First Reflective Write Done during the first class session, August 21
September 4 thru 27 - Class Topic: The Schitsu'umsh (the Coeur d'Alene, a Plateau American Indian) and the Apsaalooke (the Crow, a Plains American Indian) (8)
Topics: The Texts: Oral Traditions. Creation and the Animal Peoples. The Gifts and key religious teachings. The Spiritual Goal and Means to reach it - rites of passage. The Sun Dance and Vision Quest. The "wagon wheel" and the many paths to the Creator. Medicine, its efficacy and the power of story, and its applications - Burnt Face Revisited. Outline of Lectures and Key Terms
Frey's Stories That Make the World, pp. 5-37 (Introduction, "Four Smokes" and "Couple Befriended by the Moon"), pp. 39-45, 52-61 and 63-75, (Text: Themes, Motifs, "Coyote and Swallowing Monster" and "Coyote and the Rock"), pp. 141-158 and 162-167 (Texture, Orality and Literacy, and "Coyote and the Green Spot"), pp. 169-177 and 179-182 (Context and "Elk and the Young Man"), pp. 214-216 (Conclusion). Begin immediately
Frey and Elders' Huckleberries: pp. 43-56 reiterating Heart Knowledge and contrasting it with Head Knowledge; pp. 92-135 on addressing the "mutually exclusive" in our lives and the unique "spokes" and universal "hub"; and pp. 148-54 term glossary
Spiritual Values of the North American Indian Begin immediately
The Living Stone (32 min., this 1958 National Film Board of Canada classic illustrates key Indigenous religious values, told in narrative form)
Sun Dance Way and Vision Quest (57 min. and 4 min., great overview of this key ceremony, as told by Tom Yellowtail; filmed during the June 1989, in honor of Tom Yellowtail)
Billy Yellow (18 min., intimate look into the Dine (Navajo) Healing Ceremony; introduced by anthropologist David Mayberry-Lewis, as part of his Millennium Project, 1992)
Oral Narratives of Lawrence Aripa (Introduction by Cliff SiJohn, from the Lifelong Learning Online Project 2002)
Salmon Always Goes Up River (narrative text)
Background on the Schitsu'umsh and on "Heart Knowledge" (discussion with Cliff SiJohn, Coeur d'Alene elder, in 12 video clips)
September 3 - Labor Day - No Classes
October 2 - First Exam - See Study Guide Study Session Monday 1 Oct. 5-7:30 PM in the Food Court Lower Commons Orientation Four Pilgrim Groups
October ?? - Pah-Loots-Pu Powwow. Beasley Coliseum, Pullman.
October 4 - 23 - Class Topic: Hinduism (6)
Topics: The Texts: the Bhagavad Gita (1) or Bhagavad Gita (2) (YouTube) and the Upanishads. The Goals: The Paths of Desire - kama and artha, and the Paths of Renunciation - dharma and moksha. The Landscape: divinity, the cosmos, and the self. The Process - Karma and Samsara. The Means: Yogas - raja (way of meditation), jnana (way of knowledge), karma (way of action), and bhakti (way of devotion). The Gods and Goddesses. The Pilgrimage.
Soul of a People (29 min., a 1971 film by Huston Smith and Elda Hartly on the central themes of Hinduism, and the paradoxes found in Indian and in the notion of the "Infinite Mind")
Hinduism: Faith, Festivals and Rituals (50 min., nice overview of Hinduism and its ritual life; 1995 Films Media Group)
Ganges: River to Heaven (52 min., an insightful look into Hinduism and the role the Ganges River plays within it, full of powerful images and authentic situations. This award-winning 2003 film follows the journey of four families as they prepare for the death and cremation of loved ones at Kashi, also known as Varanasi or Benares, on the Ganges River. It presents the rituals, realities, and challenges associated with this key rite of passage.)
Benares: Steps to Heaven (30 min., a 1984 film introducing this sacred city of Benares, also known as Varanasi or Kashi, and the pilgrimages associated with it.)
Three Worlds of Bali (58 min., this 1979 film introduces to the arts and religions of Bali, with particular reference to Wayang Shadow Puppets and the world renewal ceremony of Eka Dasa Rudra)
Loving Krishna (37 min., a 1985 film about the meaning of Bhakti devotion as expressed toward Krishna in the town of Vishnapur in West Bengal.
The Lover and The Beloved: A Journey into Tantra (70 min., awarding winning 2012 film by Andy Lawrence offers one man's journey across northern India and his search enlightenment, searching for meaning in holy shrines, coming close to death in a cremation grounds and enjoying the chaos of the Aghori seekers. Offers a dramatic insight into Tankrik ideas of the life cycle, particularly death, and how we seek knowledge in Tankrik Hinduism.
Shri Swami's Bhagavad Gita - Chapters 14 - 18
October 30 -Exercise See Study Guide (instead of written exam)
November 1 - Visit the Librarian, and explore your research options for your Participatory Paper. You will not meet in our classroom at 9:30 but rather in the lobby of the Library, 1st floor, near the reference desk. Diane Prorak, reference librarian, will meet you and direct you to the Library Classroom. If you have a laptop computer, please bring it. She will also have a sign-in sheet on which you will list some of the sources you explored in the library workshop.
November 1 thru November 15 - Class Topic: Buddhism (5)
Topics: The Texts: the Dhammapada and Buddhist Doctrines. Siddhartha, the Great Awakening, and the Buddha. The Challenge and the Goal: the Four Noble Truths and nirvana/sunyata. The Means: the Eight-fold Path. The Landscape: at first glance, karma and samsara; and a second view, the yana - from anicca, skandhas, paticcasamuppada and bardos, through one of the Three Schools (Theravada, Mahayana and Vijrayana Buddhism) and the bodhisattvas, then arriving, nirvana/sunyata. But the questions continue: what is the nature of reality and of compassion, and what is the "great paradox"?
Maguire and Muller's Dhammapada - Introductions (pp. ix-xxii) and Chapters 1-3, 7, 9, 12-16, 19-20, 24-26 Begin immediately
Buddhist Doctrines (selected writings) Begin immediately
Requiem for a Faith (27 min., a 1971 film by Huston Smith and Elda Hartly on Tibetan Buddhism)
Buddhism: the Great Wheel of Being (52 min., presenting the tenets and history of Buddhism, including discussion of the Four Noble Truths and the Eightfold Path; 1995 Films Media Group)
The Great Liberation: Tibetan Book of the Dead (45 min., death as a "rite of passage"; this 1994 film examines the history, rites and liturgies associated with death and the afterlife, follows a young novice monk and his teacher who guide a villager into the afterlife and rebirth.) Study Guide
Life of Buddha, (90 min., a 2003 Martin Meissonnier film about the historic life and awakening, as well as key teachings of the Buddha.)
10 Questions for the Dalai Lama (85 min., this awarding winning 2006 Rick Ray film provides a rich background on the history of Tibet, Tibetan Buddhism and the Dalai Lama, capped with a wonderful interview with the Dalai Lama himself. A great segment on the Mandala.)
Alan Watts discusses Nothingness (4 min., YouTube video. Insightful and revealing)
the Chenrezig Bodhisatta
Maguire and Muller's Dhammapada - chapters not assigned above
The young Buddha - Siddhartha - and mathematically calculating the size of an atom (Thanks to Wieteke for the link)
November 6 - Proposal due for your Personal Quest - Participatory Paper
November 15 - Third Exam, See Study Guide NOW INCLUDED IN FINAL; Outline draft due for your Personal Quest - Participatory Paper
November 19-23 - Fall Recess - No Classes
November 27 - December 6 - Class Topic: Taoism (4)
Topics: The Texts: Tao Te Ching, and writings of Lao Tzu and Chuang Tzu. The Goal, Means and Landscape: The Tao - Character, The Landscape: Chapter 1 and Yin Yang, the Hexagram and I Ching. The Three "Schools" or Ways of Life (Gods and Goddesses of the Religious Way). The Aligning: the Wu Wei and Te (the Three Jewels), with the Ch'i. The Examples of Expressions: music, landscape paintings, poetry, calligraphy, medicine, mediation, symbolism, and Wuxia
Lin's Tao Te Ching - Introductions (pp vii-xxxi) and Chapters 1-81 Begin immediately
Smith ch. 5 Begin immediately
Chuang Tzu (selected writings) Begin by December 2
"Calligraphy" (viewed segment is 25 min., set in Ancient China, it is a time in which rival kingdoms seek to kill the King of Qin, the most powerful of the kingdoms. In this scene, the King of Qin wants to know how his agent, Nameless, killed two powerful assassins, Broken Sword and Flying Snow. How are words more powerful than arrows, and how is the essence of calligraphy and swordsmanship the same? Speculate on the meaning of how color is used in various scenes and in the clothing worn. Illustrative of wuxia genre and application of ch'i. From Hero, a Zhang Yimou 2002 film. See URL link)
"Echo Game" (viewed segment is 8 min., set in 859 AD, the once great Tang Dynasty is in decline. In this scene, a police officer "tests" a "blind" dancer, suspecting her to be a rebel. Illustrative of wuxia genre and application of ch'i. From House of Flying Daggers, a Zhang Yimou 2004 film. See URL link)
John Chang Nei Kung (8 min., YouTube. Demonstration of Chi.)
December 6 - Personal Quest - Participatory Paper is due by Friday December 7th by 5:00 pm in my office Phinney 116 (I'm in the office from 7:30 to 10:00 am and 1:30 to 3:00 pm)
December - Course Evaluation is due (can do right now!)
December 14 (Friday) - Final Exam (PDF) - See Study Guide Can be turned in anytime earlier - hard copy or attached with e-mail. Due by: December 14th Time: 9:30 am Place: my office, Phinney 116
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