Weary Wanderer Seeks Spiritual Balm
Enhanced security screenings in the wake of terrorist acts. Head bonks by fellow passengers too careless to control their errant luggage. Wailing babies. Increasingly cramped airline seating. Travel discomforts suck the joy out of journeying faster than a Dyson vacuums crud from a clean freak’s carpet, often making it impossible to stay grounded spiritually (or, mindfully, as a humanist) for even the most seasoned of trekkers.
Another big buzzkill? The separation from friends or fellow believers (or fellow non-believers).
Fortunately, technology is making it easier than ever for business travelers, the lone pilgrim or parents vacationing with children to connect with the information needed to keep their respective journeys toward mindfulness on track. Churches, temples, retreat centers and other general spirituality websites now not only list schedules of worship times, they offer online self-study content and advertise workshops and small group study programs. (Humanist groups have also created similar content-rich websites.) In addition, Facebook has become a great way for spiritual or humanist communities to stay in touch.
The following are just a few of the online resources currently available. May they help you find – or regain – your bliss.
- Retreat Finder: From going within at silent retreats to purposeful pampering at high end spas, this website can help you plan your next steps on the road to wellness.
- Wanderlust: Regain your center and sense of purpose by connecting with yoga and personal growth teachers, fellow fitness enthusiasts and seekers of serenity at one of the many festivals offered each year in the U.S., Canada and Chile.
- World-Wide Labyrinth Locator: The Labyrinth Society and Veriditas have partnered to create this free, user-friendly tool for finding labyrinths for meditation and contemplative walking in settings from hospitals to schools, churches and parks across the globe.
Atheist Meditation Community on Facebook: Thought-provoking posts regarding atheism, meditation, mindfulness and religion.
- DharmaNet: Online learning resource center with information regarding the diverse range of Buddhism practices.
- Secular Buddhist Association: Listing of secular practice centers in Australia, New Zealand and the United States and social networking sites online.
- Parishes Online (Catholic): Find Mass times, contact information and descriptions for Catholic churches across the U.S. with this comprehensive online directory.
- Open Directory (Protestant, Non-denominational): Although not comprehensive, this list from the Open Directory Project can still be a useful starting point for your church search whether you’re a Protestant or just curious about the many different denominations of this faith.
Shaivam: Shiva’s home on the Internet helps seekers find their bliss with information about Hindu scriptures, a prayer of the day and a directory of temples around the world.
- Islamic Finder: Islamic Finder’s search tool for mosques, schools, Islamic organizations, and places of business.
- Prayer Finder: Enter your zip code to determine prayer times and locate mosques, cultural and fellowship centers, and other facilities worldwide.
Federation of Jain Associations in North America: With roughly 70 member organizations which support more than 100,000 Jains in North America, JAINA offers its members, fellow Jains and visitors information about the Jain Dharma and Way of Life, online forums, contact information for North American Jain Centers, and other resources.
- goDaven: Orthodox Minyan times and places of worship worldwide may be found quickly and easily by simply entering your location in the search box at the top of the website’s homepage.
- Union for Reform Judaism: This easy-to-search online directory helps travelers locate Reform congregations in the Bahamas, Canada and across the United States. The World Union for Progressive Judaism also offers a similar search tool for worshippers traveling outside of the U.S.
- United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism: This branch of Judaism offers its user-friendly Find a Kehilla page, which enables individuals to locate places of worship and service times in the United States and internationally.