Morning Seminars

  • 1.  Awaken to the Heartbeat

    Rebekah Benner

    Make a joyful noise!! Connect to the heart of the Mother Drum! Learn the  basics of hand-drumming and drum circle facilitation. Rhythms from many cultures will be shared. Shamanic drum journey, trance drumming, drum chant & song will also be explored. For the new drummer, and the experienced.

    Participants must bring their own tall pedestal type drum: i.e. djembe, ashiko, doumbek, that can be held between the knees and played with both hands.  Limit: 25

  • 2. Belly Dance — Dance of the Goddess

    Pamela Midyett and Laura Howe

    Through movement, video, and music, we will explore belly dance as a dance for all ages and body types. We will explore some styles currently  being danced and introduce the spiritual connection. Participants should wear comfortable clothing such as yoga pants and tee-shirts. Limit: 25

  • 3. Sacred Amulet sand Talismans: Create Your Own with Re-Purposed Objects and Polymer Clay

    Amy Walters

    Amulets and talismans have been used as tools for enchantment, meditation, and prayer throughout human history.  This workshop covers fundamental information on context and use of various amulets and talismans across cultures, e.g. Celtic, Native American, and Chinese objects.  Participants will create their own sacred objects with polymer clay and personally meaningful re-purposed objects. Participants will also compose their own chant, poem, or prayer appropriate to their new amulet or talisman.

    Participants should bring a tissue cutter, a package each of black, white, and translucent polymer clay (Premo recommended).  As many packages as desired of other colors of polymer clay.  Any other tools desired: pasta maker or dryer, extruder, molds, textures, Several small items with which participants have a special connection: sea glass, pine cones, stones, lyrics to a song, bones, leaves, broken jewelry or pottery,  seeds, valentines, dials, gears, small toys, dried flowers, etc. Bring “junk” that may serve as someone else’s treasure!

  • 4. Compassionate Dialogue

    Saunis Parsons

    There’s a lot of talk these days about the need for respectful dialogue, and this workshop is geared towards providing participants with a simple and useful template for addressing conflicts and other difficult conversations. The Dialogue is based on the “Couple’s Dialogue” from Harville Hendrix’s book, “Getting the Love You Want”.  We will discuss basic communication and examine how conflicts can be managed constructively using the Dialogue in a variety of situations.  There will be time each session to practice the Dialogue through role-playing.

  • 5. Cultivating Resilience

    Cindy Frantz

    We all “just want to be happy,” but the reality is that life throws us curve ball after curve ball.  If our goal is happiness, we will fail much of the time.  This workshop will focus on the goal of resilience instead: How can we stay motivated, curious and optimistic even in the face of life’s challenges? Resilience is defined as the ability to recover quickly from illness, change, or misfortune. Decades of research show that resilience can be cultivated and increased.  In this seminar, participants will learn strategies and practice techniques that help to build mental, emotional, social, and physical resilience. Participants should bring a laptop or journal. Limit: 16

  • 6. Half the Sky: Turning Oppression into Opportunity for Women Worldwide

    Deb Lemire

    Through film clips from the documentary “Half the Sky: Turning Oppression into Opportunity for Women Worldwide” (based on the book by New York Times Journalist Nicholas Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn, www.pbs.org/independentlens/half-the-sky/), workshop attendants will bear witness to meaningful solutions to oppression faced by women across the globe.  These stories help us see that the key to economic progress lies in unleashing women’s potential. They make clear how so many people have helped to do just that, and how we can each do our part. Through discussion we will explore how those solutions can be translated into our work at UU’s in our own communities.

    Participants should bring paper and pen for note taking.

  • 7. Mayan Theology and The 7 Principles

    Lori McGee

    In this workshop we will read short excerpts from the Popol Vuh, the sacred book of the Mayan people.  We will look at examples of how Mayan thoughts and beliefs coincide with UU thoughts and beliefs.  We will explore ideas of connected-ness, respect for the Earth, compassion, creation, and the nature of heaven and hell.

  • 8. Massage for Bodies and Souls

    Kari Gunderson

    We’ll learn basic Swedish massage techniques for clothed and bareback massage (with modesty draping.)  We’ll briefly do some yoga stretches and meditation for self-care. On Thursday we’ll learn about muscle pain management through an understanding of trigger points and constricting fascia, and self-massage for lessening our own tight tissue.  Experienced folks are welcome to join us and just work on each other while others are taking instruction. Participants should bring padding for a table, 2 sheets and a pillow (and oil if they prefer their own.) Limit: 20.

  • 9. How The US Military Leads In Social Justice

    David Michel and Lynne Kilgore

    The US Military is unique in the world as the only national military that has been under complete civilian control from its very founding. Military members give up their constitutional rights as part of their entry oath and Congress has developed a completely different set of laws for them known as the Uniform Code of Military Justice. The US Military Culture has had a direct impact on every part of our culture and led the way in many Social Justice movements; for example the de-segregation of the military in 1948 while Jim Crow was still practiced all over the US, and GLBT rights.  Participants will end with a  better understanding of the US Military intersects with our 7 Principles and how someone can be in the military and a practicing UU.

  • 10. Play with Me! Connecting to the Littlest UU’s through Art & Fun

    Colleen Thoele

    Caregivers, parents and grandparents come and have some fun learning how to be a kid! This workshop will concentrate on activities to connect with the littlest UU’s in our lives through art, music, tradition and adventure.  My hope is that you will leave SI with a new set of tools for connecting and playing with the kids in your life.  Be ready to get creative. This is a hands-on workshop!  Participants should bring one idea/activity to share with the group

  • 11. Rock of Ages-A History of Rock and Roll in the Movies

    Bill Brauning

    Rock and Roll has played an important part in the Cinema for over 60 years. From early beginnings with Bill Haley and the Comets and Elvis, to Woodstock and Saturday Night Fever, we will review landmark movies and the part rock & roll played. Limit: 50

  • 12. Black Appalachia – Oppression within an Oppressed Population: Fostering Individual Action Against Racism in Search of a Unitarian Response

    Wilburn Hayden and Mel Hoover

    The workshop’s purpose is to have participants understand the history of Appalachia being oppressed by the larger society and how blacks within the region have been and continue to an oppressed population. The session will provide a platform for UUs recommitting to the promise of a racial just society. Participants will explore additional tools for individual to move to an anti-racist stance for action.

  • 13. Reading the Rocks of Gambier

    Jamie Martin-Hayden

    If you’ve ever wondered what those people at SI see while staring at the building stone with a jeweler’s loupe, come join us to explore the stories written in the rocks.  We’ll travel from 200 thousand year old soils and rocks dragged down from Canada by the Illinoian ice sheet, to 350 million year old sediments and fossil of the Black Hand Formation deposited when Ohio was a shallow tropical sea. So come travel through time with us, from the arctic to the tropics, and read stories written in the rocks of Gambier.  Participants should bring walking shoes, sun hat, raincoat, and water bottle. Optional: jeweler’s loupe or small magnifying glass, and masonry hammer.  Limit: 30

  • 14. Sex and the Samaritans: The Introduction to the Hebrew Bible You Never Got in Sunday School

    Joan VanBecelaere

    This workshop will explore some of the more powerful stories of social revolution, passion and surprising leadership in the Hebrew Bible.  Drawing on the tools of literary, historical, structural and canonical criticism,  we will also discuss the questions of:  Who wrote the Hebrew Bible and when? Why was it written?  What role has it played in our western culture?  What lessons can we draw from it for our day and age?  And who are the Samaritans?

    Participants should bring a copy of the Bible – RSV, NRSV, NEB or NIV versions preferred.

  • 15. Yoga: Living Your Life Intentionally FULL

    Renaye Brauning

    By developing the tools and techniques to help us live intentionally, through awareness, and by learning to let go, we find true happiness.  This is how we allow our minds to clear so we can better hear the spiritual voice within.  Learn a yoga practice to help you breathe deeply, center in stillness, strengthen your body and restore your spirit.  Learn about the Five Tibetans, Pantanjali’s Yoga Sutras, the Bhagavad Gita and more.  No experience required. Limit: 20

  • 16. Shamanic Journey, Social Justice and Spirituality

    Diana VanWinkle

    Based on the writings of Sandra Ingerman, participants will explore the practice of shamanic journeying. Journeying is said to be a common practice in many indigenous societies and is a growing spiritual practice for individuals to make connections beyond what is visible, connections that aid transformation and healing for individuals and the earth. The tenants of this spiritual practice will be applied to social justice, empowerment and advocacy. Limit: 25

  • 17. What’s on Your Plate?  Navigating the Food Landscape with a UU Compass

    Kathy Kerns and Lois Weir

    This workshop will provide a forum to discuss the ethical challenges faced by each of us three times a day.  Why doesn’t the food at my dinner table look like what my grandmother ate?  Is it really better to be a vegetarian?  Is it better to eat local?  Organic?  And what about GMOs?  What are the human consequences of my food choices?  What can I do to help bring social justice to our food system?  These questions and more will be explored through discussion, readings, and activities. Limit: 20.

  • 18. Wedding Dance

    Bill and Susan English

    Weddings can be a special time to get out onto the dance floor.  Learn the basics and some fancy figures for the waltz, swing, polka, free-style, and other special dances you will need for a wedding. Learn how to be a good partner, to navigate the dance floor, and dance safely.  Develop a style and repertoire that works for you.  Learn also how to choose the appropriate dance for the music and appropriate music for a wedding dance.  Participants should bring clean, comfortable shoes.