I called Sister Kathryn earlier this week on one of those days when I stayed inside all day due to unhealthy air – full of smoke and particulates. She lives up in Portland and the air quality was even worse up there, and the fires closer to population centers.
The Santa Sabina Center in San Rafael is a former novitiate for Dominican Sisters which was turned into a retreat center. My annual visits to Santa Sabina, dating back to 2016, were to attend long weekends for Proprioceptive Wrting workshops. Sorry to say there are no workshops this year. It was at Santa Sabina that I first saw the Sophia Center’s Hearthstone set and book and bought my own in the gift shop. Sister Kathryn runs the Sophia Center up in Portland.
At our house, we each select a Hearthstone most days and read the commentary. I usually put mine on my desk – the message for today is “balance.” I liked the Hearthstones so much, I ordered some sets for friends and family. I called the Sophia Center for assistance with one of my orders and Kathryn answered the phone herself. After she assisted me, we talked about other things, like how she came to make the Hearthstones, and, her being a Sister, it was no surprise there was a spiritual component. Before we hung up, she suggested an author I should read and ended with “call any time.”
Since then, I have bought two books by the author she suggested, one just released, which I had pre-ordered, and it was a challenge to comprehend. The author went into levels, rays, realms, scales, worlds – Eckhart, Guirdjieff, Teilhard de Chardin, Rilke, Rumi, the Bible and more. The book is only 193 pages so it was a bit much to take in.
I called Sister Kathryn to see if she’d read the just released book and she hadn’t yet done so. I told her about some of the content and that got her talking: Cathars, the Gospel of Mary Magdalene, Gnostics, and more. She suggested additional reading. She said whatever I got from reading the book was what I needed. I didn’t need to understand everything, all at once.
After we hung up, I ordered the book for her. I’ll wait a few weeks and call her back and hear her insights, maybe gain a better understanding.