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We Already Have 8 Inches This Morning

Bill in Blizzard (2) 2-1-16.
And the storm is expected to last for three days!

Not that I am complaining.

This is a prime ski area, probably the best in North America for downhill skiing.  So it’s a joyous morning out here in Taos.

The supermarket was jammed yesterday with last-minute shoppers stocking up in preparation for the storm.


Gives Me Pause to Think

At my age spirituality of course, and religion are common topics.  Why not enjoy them?

I’ve been thinking a lot lately about big churches and early Christianity.  They are very different.  The mega churches have an enormous appeal, but I wonder about the depth of the parishioners’ spiritual gain from rousing sermons.  I’m not criticizing.  Only wondering.  I too love to tune into television evangelists.  Very inspiring.

But for actual spiritual practice I’ve found that the smaller groups of about ten to twelve is more ideal for touching deeper spiritual levels.

I’ve good experience for this.  I’ve been a member of Alcoholics Anonymous for 46 years, attending meetings in about half the states of the US and a few foreign countries — both large microphone groups in Mid-town Manhattan as well as a really notable meeting in Grangeville, Idaho where the fellow who I met there told me after we went through the ritual of setting up the meeting room table, chairs, books and pamphlet rack, that it was rare for there to be another member in the room beside himself.  He’d been holding this meeting for eight years almost entirely a single attendee!

What I have noticed is that meetings with about eight to twelve were the ones I gained most from and enjoyed most.


The School of Practical Philosophy

I also attended this school for twenty-seven years, most of which were as a tutor, but always as a student attending my own classes.

Here too, I found that the large assemblies of seventy-five to a hundred were, while inspiring and informative, the least helpful in my spiritual work.  For this, I benefited most from smaller groups of about ten to twelve.

I hear school teachers making the same sort to of observations, that larger class sizes seem to suffer from the more intimate kind of learning experiences.


East vs West

I don’t know if this is true or not, but I’ve the impression that in the East groups of devotees are much smaller than in the West and do not enrich their leaders or gurus as they prefer to call them.

I don’t know that this makes for more highly spiritual devotees or not, though it seems so from my very limited perspective.

I know there are other substantial differences in Eastern and Western religions, but I’ve noticed a lot of small groups clustered around one leader in the photographs I’ve seen of the East.  And seen very few photos of large gatherings, except for large pilgrimages.


Smaller Seems to Be Better for Many Reasons

Something else I’ve noticed.  Group therapy sessions seem to work among smaller groups.  I’ve so little knowledge of this that I can’t believe my impressions carry much weight.

But the smaller group would help avoid the ego aspect of larger congregations that I’ve also noticed.  Big groups seem to raise leader’s egoistic estimates of themselves, whether in business, politics or religion.

I’d love to hear your observations about this, for I’ve the notion that there is a lot of merit to it.



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