Wholly Listening

What is spiritual guidance?

Spiritual guidance, or (w)hol(l)y listening, deepens our relationship with the holy, whatever we envision that to be. It helps us to better recognize how the divine moves and engages in our lives.

The focus isn’t on the self, but on relationship, on our connection with the holy. It’s like marriage counseling. It helps us to better see our everyday lives as enmeshed and infused with the divine.

Spiritual guidance helps the seeker to better discern their path, to answer: Where am I now? Where will I be?

What spiritual guidance isn’t:

• Religious Education/Formation, where we learn about beliefs and texts in order to understand and more fully identify with a faith community.

• Psychotherapy, where we identify and resolve causes for anxiety, fear and negative behaviors.

• Pastoral Counseling, where we use the wisdom of a religious tradition to understand and respond to the challenges of life.

Also, spiritual guidance isn’t an alternative to corporate worship. It’s not an ‘either/or’, it’s an ‘and’. Solitary practice helps us to connect more effectively in community, because belonging to a faith community is an integral part of any spiritual journey.

Should I seek spiritual guidance?

Spiritual guidance hearkens from ancient times and from all faiths, and many religions consider it a vital part of the spiritual walk. I welcome seekers from all religions and perspectives.

It is good to enter intentionally into this practice, and to be ready to allocate regular time in addition to meeting with a holy listener. It takes dedication and practice to realize the benefits of spiritual guidance.


• Can I commit to regular prayer and contemplation?
• Am I willing to live ethically and lovingly, as the holy leads me to a greater understanding of what that means?
• Am I willing to be inconvenienced by the pull of the divine?

What can I expect?

You can expect:

• To be accepted where you are now.
• A listening and discerning ear.
• An objective voice.
• Observations, questions and suggestions to help you on your path.

What does it cost?

I don’t charge a set fee. Instead, I ask seekers to bring a guest gift to each meeting. What does the divine nudge you to offer? It could be a song, a monetary offering, or an apple pie.

Guest gifts are good spiritual practice. They balance inward focus with outward consideration, and move us from a mindset of scarcity and cost to one of abundance and generosity.

I am pleased to meet with you in person or via Skype. Contact me at 503.967.9119 or via email at ariyawen@gmail.com, and let’s talk.

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