R608 Fall 2019 The Road Less Traveled: Great Spiritual Lessons from Grief and Joy
Wednesdays, 9:40–11:05, Sept. 25–Oct. 30
Rose Gallery at Reston Community Center, Lake Anne
Instructor: Larry Packard
“Let it not be said of me,” declared one author, “that I never realized the rich lessons of my life until it was too late to live them.” This class explores the richness of joy and grief, the two areas of our lives that we either avoid or fail to fully appreciate. Who doesn’t want to avoid grief, but does avoidance cut us off from living completely? Who doesn’t want joy, but if we don’t find out what really gives joy, we can be blind to our real desires. The difference lies in a fresh vision and an understanding of how grief and joy can enrich our lives. We will use Frost’s poem, “The Road Not Taken,” to explore reasons why we need not regret past roads taken and ways to see more clearly where to go in the future. In The Road Less Traveled, M. Scott Peck offers insight into how grief and joy function together. As examples, we will explore the writings of poet Mary Oliver, author Russell Baker, and historian Barbara Tuchman. We will also use DVD clips and YouTube interviews.
The Rev. Dr. Laurence “Larry” Packard is a recently retired Episcopal priest who graduated from Wake Forest University and Virginia Theological Seminary before receiving a PhD at Princeton. He delights in learning with the participants, invites lively discussion, and refrains from pushing single views on any topic.