Howard Thurman: The Writing of Jesus and the Disinherited

“In the contemplation of the earth, I know I am surrounded by the love of God.”
— Howard Thurman

Welcome to your Howard Thurman: The Writing of Jesus and the Disinherited Day.

Shalem retreat day leader Lerita Coleman Brown has created this second quiet day to further explore Howard Thurman’s life and contemplative witness and what it might mean for us in today’s challenging world. Centered on Thurman’s writing in Jesus and the Disinherited, this is a special opportunity to experience Thurman’s enduring and inspiring life and words.

  • Retreat Schedule
  • Morning Session 1
  • Morning Session 2
  • Afternoon Session 1
  • Afternoon Session 2
  • Bibliography & Resources
Retreat Schedule
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Below is an outline of the Morning and Afternoon sessions. Give yourself ample time for each session and spacious silence. You may access each section of the Retreat Day in the adjacent tabs, as well as the Bibliography and Resource section.

Overview
Please note: these are very rough estimates for timing.

Morning
Intro (8 min)
Reflection Questions
Teaching 1 – Holy Coincidences in Thurman’s Life (20 min)
Reflection Questions
Teaching 2 – Jesus and the Disinherited (6 min)

Reflection Questions

Afternoon
Fear, Deception and Jesus Ch 2 &3 (10-15 min)
Reflection Questions
Events that Imprison reading/guided meditation (short few minutes invitation into silence)
Hatred and Love Ch 4 & 5 (20 min)
Reflection Questions

At any time you feel led, you may make use of the Shalem Timer. When you are in a quiet, comfortable place and ready for silence-go ahead and press play.

Listen to the opening session with Lerita by clicking on the play button below:

Click here to open Thurman’s Quietness and Confidence.

Click on the Reflection Questions image below to download and print the questions. Take as much time as you need to respond.

reflectionquestions1

Listen to Part 1 of our morning session with Lerita by clicking on the play button below:

Click on the Reflection Questions image below to download and print the questions. Take as much time as you need to respond.

reflectionquestions1

Listen to the opening session with Lerita by clicking on the play button below:

Click on the Reflection Questions image below to download and print the questions. Take as much time as you need to respond.

Listen to the opening session with Lerita by clicking on the play button below:

Click on the Reflection Questions image below to download and print the questions. Take as much time as you need to respond.

Listen to the opening session with Lerita by clicking on the play button below:

Click on the Reflection Questions image below to download and print the questions. Take as much time as you need to respond.

Howard Washington Thurman

Jesus and the Disinherited Retreat Day

An Extended Bibliography

Howard Thurman, Jesus and the Disinherited. Boston: Beacon Press, (1949), (1996, reprint edition).

Howard Thurman, Meditations of the Heart. Boston: Beacon Press, 1999.

Howard Thurman, The Creative Encounter. Richard, Indiana: Friends United Press, (1954), (1972, reprint edition).

Howard Thurman, With Head and Heart: The Autobiography of Howard Thurman. New York: Harcourt Brace & Company, 1981.

Howard Thurman, The Luminous Darkness: A Personal Interpretation of the Anatomy of Segregation and the Ground of Hope. NY: Harper Row, 1965, (1989, reprint edition). Friends United Press; First edition (April 7, 2014) version.

Howard Thurman, Deep is the Hunger. Richard, Indiana: Friends United Press, 1978.

Howard Thurman, Disciplines of the Spirit. Richard, Indiana: Friends United Press, 1963.

Howard Thurman, The Search for Common Ground. Richard, Indiana: Friends United Press, 1986.

Howard Thurman, Mysticism: And the Experience of Love (Pendle Hill Pamphlet Book 115). April 28, 2015. (Available in Kindle Edition).

Luther Smith, Jr., Howard Thurman-The Mystic as Prophet. Richard, Indiana: Friends United Press, 1991. 2007 edition.

Luther Smith, Jr. (Ed.) Howard Thurman: Essential Writings. New York: Orbis, 2006.

Walter E. Fluker, Catherine Tumber (Eds.), A Strange Freedom: The Best of Howard Thurman on Religious Experience and Public Life. Boston: Beacon Press, 1998.

Quinton Dixie, Peter Eisenstadt, Visions of a Better World: Howard Thurmans Pilgrimage to India and the Origins of African American Nonviolence, Boston: Beacon Press, 2011. 2014 paperback version.

Donna Schaper (Ed.) 40 Day Journey with Howard Thurman, Minneapolis: Augsburg Books, 2009.

Lerita Coleman Brown, An Ordinary Mystic: Contemplation, Inner Authority, and Spiritual Direction in the Life and Work of Howard Thurman. Presence: An International Journal of Spiritual Direction, 18, 14-22, 2012.

*Walter Fluker (Senior Ed.), The Papers of Howard Washington Thurman: Volumes 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, Columbia, SC: University of South Carolina Press, 2009, 2012, 2015, 2017, 2019.

*Recently, the Howard Thurman Papers Projects completed its publication of five volumes filled with speeches, lectures, sermons, and correspondence of Howard Thurman.

Vocal Recordings by Howard Thurman

The Living Wisdom of Howard Thurman: A Visionary for our Times. Boulder, CO: Sounds True, 2010 (audio recording of selected Howard Thurman sermons, meditations and talks). https://www.soundstrue.com/store/

Virtual Listening Room

http://hgar-srv3.bu.edu/web/howard-thurman/virtual-listening-room (or search Thurman listening room)

(This website offers a rich resource of digitized Howard Thurman sermons, talks, and lectures).

Documentary Film

Backs Against the Wall: The Howard Thurman Story (Martin Doblmeier, 2019) can be streamed on PBS.org or purchased as a DVD.

Podcasts

Lerita Coleman Brown, PhD: Howard Thurman and the Inner Authority of Silence, EncounteringSilence.com, posted February, 2018.

Lerita Coleman Brown, PhD: Episode 9: An Interview with Dr. Lerita Coleman Brown and her call to Promote Howard Thurman, Contemplate This! https://thomasjbushlack.com/episode9/, posted August 14, 2018.

Readings on Contemplation and Social Justice with a Focus on African Americans

Lerita Coleman Brown, Dissecting Racism: Healing Minds, Cultivating Spirits. In C. Meeks, Ed., Living into God’s Dream: Dismantling Racism in America, pp. 15-33, NY: Morehouse Press, 2016.

Jacquelyn Crooks-Smith, Lerita Coleman Brown, Howard Thurman: Contemplative and Sacred Activist. In T. Taylor-Stinson (Ed). Ain’t Gonna Let Nobody Turn Me Around: Stories of Contemplation and Justice, New York: Church Publishing, 2017.

Lerita Coleman Brown, Praying without Ceasing: Basking in the Loving Presence of God. In R. Norman-McNaney, S. Johnson, T. Taylor-Stinson (Eds.), Embodied Spirits: Stories of Spiritual Directors of Color, pp. 39-50 New York: Morehouse Publishing, 2014.

Barbara Holmes, Joy Unspeakable-Contemplative Practices of the Black Church-2nd Edition. Minneapolis: Fortress Press, 2017.

Kevin, Quashie, The Sovereignty of Quiet: Beyond Resistance in Black Culture. Rutgers University Press, 2012.

Other Relevant Texts

Douglas Steere, Quaker Spirituality: Selected Writings (Classics of Western Spirituality), Paulist Press, 1983. 2005 reprint edition.

Robert Ellsberg (Ed.), Modern Spiritual Masters: Writers on Contemplation and Compassion, New York: Orbis, 2009