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Evening of Reflection with Chris Hyde: Gerald May: Desire and connection with God

Common Threads: God and Therapy Evening Series

Weaving the Wisdom of God into our Daily Lives

Topic for April 10th Evening of Reflection:  

Gerald May: Desire and connection with God

Gerald May was a psychiatrist who served people in the Air Force, prisons and psychiatric hospitals.  He took “early retirement” to work at Shalem Institute where he combined his professional experience with his personal experience of knowing God.  He was part of the team that set the tone for Shalem Institute’s training programs in spiritual direction.  He wrote nine books.  This evening’s talk explores themes from two of his books: The Awakened Heart: Opening Yourself to the Love You Need and Will and Spirit: A Contemplative Psychology. 

This talk will cover Gerald May’s writings about the role of desire (i.e., one’s deepest values) in spiritual growth.  His ideas will be compared with the various languages of God described by Teresa of Avila, Thomas Keating and Quakers.  This talk will also cover May’s discussion about willfulness vs. willingness; self-respect; and the human need for belonging and connecting. 

The evening will include lecture, discussion and experiential activities with an opportunity to interact with other attendees. 

To Register for this evening: Please fill out the form below or call the Jesus House office at 302.995.6859. 

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Cost: A free will offering of $15 is suggested; you may make a free will offering below or at the door.  All offerings go to support the programs of the Jesus House. Light refreshments will be provided. 

Common Theme of the Series
A series of informal gatherings will explore how spiritual insights can enhance our understanding of ourselves. The main thread of these meetings is weaving together spiritual and psychological wisdom. We often face anxiety, disconnection, anger and hopeless in our lives; we also experience the joy of closeness with another person, humble service, curiosity and creativity. Both spirituality and psychology address these issues, but their contributions are not always integrated. Each evening’s topic will integrate a specific spiritual teaching with concepts and wisdom from psychology. The goal is to enrich our approach to both the difficulties and joys of life.

Monthly Topics:

  • 1/9/17 Teresa of Avila: Integrating our spiritual and psychological sides
  • 2/13/17 Thomas Keating: We are a mixed bag: True Self and False Self
  • 3/13/17 Quaker Wisdom: Discerning personal thoughts from divine leadings
  • 4/10/17 Gerald May: Desire and connection with God
  • 5/8/17 Ada Maria Isasi-Diaz; Jesus Scholars: The Kin-dom of God
  • 6/12/17 Harville Hendrix, John Gottman: Couples Therapy and our relationship with God
  • 7/10/17 Martin Buber: Friendly Universe or Personal God? (I-It or I-Thou relationship?)
  • 8/14/17 Tone Matters: Reverence; Tone in relationships
  • 9/11/17 Neuroscience and Attunement: Deeply Knowing the Another’s Spirit
  • 10/9/17 Marcus Borg: Psychological implications of his theology
  • 11/13/17 Teresa of Avila: Our Pearl of Great Price
  • December no meeting

A Warm Welcome to All: People from all religious traditions are welcome at these meetings. Wisdom from all traditions will be included as appropriate to the topic. 

For more information: Email Chris Hyde at or phone at 410.398.1993. 

Dr. Chris Hyde, PhD is a licensed clinical psychologist who has worked in various settings: therapy services in inner city schools, the adolescent judicial system as well as traditional clinics; he has done physiological research on ADHD and aggression; he does program evaluation for trauma treatment. He has studied classical and modern spirituality for many years.He currently provides private-practice psychotherapy as well as Spirit-informed coaching in his office near Newark, DE.