THE 23RD ANNUAL FESTIVAL OF FAITHS
is a five-day nationally acclaimed multi-faith celebration of music, poetry, art, film, and dialogue with spiritual leaders, practitioners, and teachers.
The 2018 Festival explores practices, teachings, and insight rooted in Feminine wisdom. Speakers and artists from diverse backgrounds and faith traditions examine the Feminine aspects of the Divine, non-dual thinking, the wisdom of the natural world, suffering, healing, emotional intelligence, and creativity. The Festival seeks to offer deeper insight into the Sacred Feminine in all of us.
Among the internationally renowned speakers and panelists at this year’s Festival are:
- Diane Rehm, author and Peabody award-winning American public broadcaster
- Ruby Sales, civil rights activist, preacher and founder of SpiritHouse Project working for racial justice
- Cemalnur Sargut, renowned Sufi teacher and President of the Turkish Women’s Cultural Association
- Becca Stevens, author, speaker, priest, social entrepreneur, and founder of Thistle Farms offering sanctuary for survivors of violence against women
- Rabbi Nina Beth Cardin, rabbi, author, and environmental activist
- Tsoknyi Rinpoche, one of the most renowned teachers of Tibetan Buddhism in the West
- Lynne Twist, Soul of Money Institute founder and co-founder of the Pachamama Alliance
- Mary Berry Smith, founder of The Berry Center, in New Castle, Kentucky.
- Christopher Pramuk, leading scholar on Thomas Merton, Sophia, race, faith, music and spirituality
- Monica A. Coleman, Professor of Constructive Theology and African American Religions
- Omid Safi, Director of the Duke Islamic Studies Center and columnist for OnBeing with Krista Tippett
- Sharon Salzberg, world-renowned teacher and New York Times best-selling author
Festival Pass includes:
- Access to every session of the 2018 Festival of Faiths, including programs at the Kentucky Center for the Arts and the Cathedral of the Assumption
- Receptions before evening programs on Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday
- General Admission seating
TUESDAY, APRIL 24
5:30 PM – 7:00 PM | Sacred Insight – Feminine Wisdom: Opening Celebration
Cathedral of the Assumption | 433 S 5th St - GET DIRECTIONS
WEDNESDAY, APRIL 25
8:30 AM – 9:15 AM | Buddhist Spiritual Practice on the Sacred Feminine
Elizabeth Mattis Namgyel
10:00 AM – 12:00 Noon | One, Not Two: Sacred Wholeness
Elizabeth Mattis Namgyel, Christopher Pramuk, and Pravrajika Brahmaprana
From ancient times our faith traditions teach us that everything is inextricably united as a sacred whole. This eternal and perennial wisdom is hard to grasp by the human mind, which tends to see the world dualistically: right/wrong, male/female, sacred/profane. The contemplative, non-dual mind, however, can restore our understanding of the interdependence of all things. It holds paradox, and is unitive.
This session will explore how unifying and balancing the complementary feminine and masculine aspects of Divine Wisdom is essential to our approaching wholeness and the non-dual mind.
2:00 PM – 4:00 PM | Confronting Gender: Seeing, Hearing & Valuing the Feminine
Nina Simons, Rev. Monica Coleman, and others
We face many grave spiritual and cultural imbalances caused by our devaluing, oppression, and ignorance of the feminine. Discrimination, bias, and assault based on gender/identification is a global and systemic condition. Yet as evidenced by #metoo, #TimesUp, the women’s march, and prominent media stories from Hollywood to New York City, women’s voices are being heard around the globe, and with them, political will is building to confront gender bias.
Understanding, lifting up, and integrating the feminine may result in a new understanding and re-spiritualization of how we look at the world and ourselves. How can we more fully reconnect and restore feminine wisdom to our collective and cultural consciousness as a fundamental way to heal our wounds? How would the world look with a realignment of values, and the reinfusion of the feminine?
7:00 PM – 9:00 PM | Festival After-Hours: LISTEN! Feminine Wisdom
THURSDAY, APRIL 26
8:30 AM – 9:15 AM | Indigenous Spiritual Practice on the Sacred Feminine
10:00 AM – 12:00 noon | Dark Nights of the Soul
Rev. Monica Coleman, Kenza Isnasni, and more
World religions teach us that suffering is part of the human condition. Our attempts to avoid suffering prevent us from experiencing essential insights and awareness that lead to spiritual healing and growth. Individually and collectively, we must step into the shadows, sit with our fears, and embrace vulnerability.
Spiritual teachings and practices help us transform the darkness into light, the fallow to the fertile, and awaken a deep level of awareness and accountability. Through these teachings, can we come to confront our shortcomings and broken behaviors? How can we face America's most egregious acts, including genocide and slavery? How can feminine insight hold space for the darkness so that we can be transformed?
2:00 PM – 4:00 PM | Culture of Addiction
Lynne Twist, Rev. Becca Stevens, and more
We live in a culture of addiction. Many of us feel increasingly alienated and disconnected as we try to find meaning and fulfillment through the accumulation of "more." This pursuit leads to further fracture, and the destructive cycle continues. We are addicted to our ego, money, power, drugs, and “stuff.” In a world that has evolved to feed and profit from human suffering, how do we break the cycle and find happiness, contentment, and peace?
In this session, healers will show how accessing feminine wisdom today can help us accept our deepest wounds, and provide insight and forgiveness that leads to healing. Additionally, speakers will help us understand our cultural addictions to materialism and success, and illuminate the spiritual and human costs associated with these systems.
7:00 PM – 9:00 PM | Festival After-Hours: EMERGE! Feminine Wisdom
Evening curated by Hannah Drake and Safiyyah Rasool
FRIDAY, APRIL 27
8:30 AM – 9:15 AM | Hindu Spiritual Practice on the Sacred Feminine
10:00 AM – 12:00 noon | Mother: Earth
Lynne Twist, Rabbi Nina Cardin, and more
The Earth is our most profound teacher. Most spiritual traditions refer to the Earth in the feminine. She is the source of all life. Through her complex systems she models essential lessons such as interdependence, interconnection, mutuality, mystery, and wholeness. Her seasons are cycles of birth, death, and rebirth. Our relationship to the Earth is an access point for uncovering feminine wisdom and insight.
What we do to the Earth is a mirror of what we also do to the feminine aspects of ourselves. She has been objectified, dominated, tamed, brutalized, and neglected. This session will reveal how the wisdom of the natural world manifests itself, and how to use this wisdom as a teacher, guide, and healer to restore balance in our relationships with the Earth and each other.
2:00 PM – 4:00 PM | Modeling Wholeness: People, Place, and Planet
Mary Berry, Rabbi Nina Cardin, Kenza Isnasni, and more
Mass displacement of people, violence, war, and natural disasters are symptoms of our current relationship to the Earth. When we respect and value the interconnections among people, place, and planet, we are honoring the inextricable sacred web of all things. We are also honoring feminine wisdom, and the understanding that sustainable solutions address people, place, and planet together as one, complex, sacred system.
This session will explore best practices, and holistic approaches, to restoring and renewing bonds between people and the places they live. It will emphasize the feminine principles of interconnection, community, and care as models of wholeness.
7:00 PM – 9:00 PM | Festival After-Hours: HONOR! Feminine Wisdom
Diane Rehm and more
SATURDAY, APRIL 28
8:30 AM – 9:15 AM | Sufi Spiritual Practice on the Sacred Feminine
Sheikha Cemalnur Sargut
10:00 AM – 12:00 Noon | Understanding the Feminine Aspects of the Divine
Sheikha Cemalnur Sargut, Omid Safi, Tsoknyi Rinpoche, and more
How do we honor and integrate the feminine aspects of Divine Wisdom in ourselves? Hear from spiritual voices deeply rooted in their sacred traditions about how they cultivate feminine wisdom. The Sacred Feminine manifests itself in a variety of forms in the world’s great faith traditions, including Sakinah, Guanyin, Sophia, Shakti, Kali, The Great Spirit, Chochmah, Yin/Yang, and many others.
What do religious institutions have to say about a reinfusion of feminine narratives? Whose stories are we telling? What do the female saints of our traditions teach us?
2:00 PM - 4:00 PM | Integrating the Feminine Aspects of the Divine
Rev. Ruby Sales, Sharon Salzberg, Najah Bazzy, and more
How can insight gained using feminine wisdom be incorporated into our lives? In the current socio-political climate, how can we shift the worldview to create a new narrative spiritually grounded, and based on a balance of the masculine and feminine? Speakers will explore practical approaches to restoring health and harmony in our modern society through the integration of feminine insight and wisdom.
This session will conclude with a short dialogue with the Festival of Faiths hosts, and special guests, to synthesize the week’s major themes.