WISING UP DISCUSSION GROUP: Saturday, March 11, 2023 4-5:30 pm EST
THE POWER OF THE PAUSE: The Wonder of Our Here & Now
UNCOMMON & OTHER STORIES by William Cass
ROWING HOME by Sybil Terres Gilmar
THE POWER OF THE PAUSE: The Wonder of Our Here & Now, A Wising Up Anthology
MY BROTHER SPEAKS IN DREAMS: Of Family, Beauty & Belonging by Catherine Anderson
A MOTHER SPEAKS, A DAUGHTER LISTENS: Journeying Together Through Dementia by Felicia Mitchell
A LITTLE BOOK OF LIVING THROUGH THE DAY: Poems During a Pandemic by David Breeden
ADULT CHILDREN: Being One, Having One & What Goes In-Between, A Wising Up Anthology
TRUCKER RHAPSODY & OTHER PLAYS by Toni Press-Coffman
SOURCE NOTES: SEVENTH DECADE by Heather Tosteson
PRESIDENT BIDEN AND PROPECTS FOR IMMIGRATION REFORM
by Charles Brockett--meant for the common citizen with 21 easily read graphs
SHARING THE BURDEN OF REPAIR: Reentry After Mass Incarceration
A Wising Up Listening Project
A WELCOMING PHILOSOPHY
The aim of Universal Table is to promote tolerance and social trust along many dimensions of life - or those are the words we have been using in our official mission statement. But each time we use them, we realize we are trying to describe something far broader - something that encompasses welcome, difference, surprise and inclusion, truthfulness and authenticity, and an equal place for each of us and what we hold most dear. These are the true goals of Universal Table: Finding the We in Them, the Us in You.
Our major activities are the books we create and publish through Wising Up Press, and the Universal Table workshops and research projects that both develop and support them. Our areas of particular interest are social justice & inclusion, immigration & belonging, pluralism in families, illness & meaning, social and psychological resiliency, creative aging, listening across faiths - and the many other complex challenges and lasting rewards of living up close and personal with pluralism in social, family, religious, and civic life.
What distinguishes our approach is an equal emphasis on the why and the how of living well with difference. Through our research projects, we are developing new interpretations of chronic areas of social discord, interpretations that make it safer for us to interact from a position of respect and appreciation with people who have very different world views and value systems.
We are equally interested in specific techniques, especially the use of story and other art forms, to help us change our patterns of direct personal interaction, so that we can live out our best intentions. What ways of thinking, imagining, listening, speaking and being with one another truly expand our worlds? For real, sustainable change takes place at the day by day, person by person, word by word, gesture by gesture level - and it isn't easy and it isn't simple. But fascinating, rewarding, energizing, inspiring, and worth all the effort - without a doubt.
It is an emergent phenomena, real as life, breath, consciousness—and, like them, can't be explained or predicted by its component parts. It's that something more that heals and reveals possibilities we could not see before. It can hold opposites, reconcile what seems completely incompatible. It can change what follows in ways we never imagined. When and where have we experienced a sense of wholeness?
THE POWER OF THE PAUSE The Wonder of Our Here & Now A Wising Up Anthology Heather Tosteson and Charles D. Brockett, Editors
Sometimes it is better not to over-ride, overcome, forge on. Sometimes the best step is just to stop—to pause, listen in, not just to doubts but perhaps to something more resilient, constructive, slower, but stronger. Wiser. The fifty-two talented writers in this collection help us explore, through poetry, fiction, and essay, the hidden gifts of pause, voluntary and involuntary, how it may help us recalibrate, restore, find new and richer ways of being with ourselves and others.
The broad range of characters in William Cass's moving and accessible second short story collection, Uncommon & Other Stories, all share a fascination with right action—how we know it, when we know it, and what that knowledge asks of us—in real time or in retrospect. Cass's stories are deeply rooted in the particularities of daily life and of nature—whether how to run a small inn in Arizona, harvest hay in Montana, mend an old woman's decaying picket fence, feed oneself through a stomach tube . . .
The historical novel Rowing Home explores how a talented, assimilated Jewish family living in Berlin in 1933 during the early rise of Nazism came to the decision to escape. What finally convinced them that it was time to leave? What confluence of events allowed them to do so?
MY BROTHER SPEAKS IN DREAMS Of Family, Beauty & Belonging Catherine Anderson
With a sister’s candid view, Anderson chronicles the barriers that made life difficult for her brother Charlie and for others like him. In an era that only gradually came to accept people with intellectual disabilities, Charlie’s life and journey, including the eight years he spent in institutions, were challenging for him and his family.
A MOTHER SPEAKS, A DAUGHTER LISTENS Journeying Together Through Dementia Felicia Mitchell
While each life story is unique, dementia's ripple effect on relationships touches us in common ways. In this collection, we're invited to share one mother-daughter dementia journey from the early days of a woman's life through years in a nursing home and also the emotional transformations that continue after a loved one’s death.
A LITTLE BOOK OF LIVING THROUGH THE DAY: Poems During a Pandemic
David Breeden's moving and accessible collection of poetry, A Little Book of Living Through the Day: Poems During a Pandemic, was written to get himself through the isolation of the pandemic—and to reach others, like those in his congregation, struggling with the same burden of the day-after-day.
These five highly topical plays by Toni Press-Coffman remain relevant to current social divides. Written over the last forty years, they movingly explore the nature of idealism, its distinctively American forms—where it comes from, how it is tested, how we lose or temper it, what saving graces come to take its place.
Both intimate and generalizable, the poems in Source Notes: Seventh Decade revolve around two core questions: "If everything we said to define ourselves/ was preceded by Just like everyone or/ Like most of us, what would shift/ in the life-long construction project/ we call our self?" and "Who says age can't be luxurious,/ astonishing, sui generis?" The poems move from public events to personal ones, explore creativity, age, marriage, early trauma, motherhood, family relationships, and travel, teaching us "we are never too old for rebirth, the hold of the miraculous."
SHARING THE BURDEN OF REPAIR: REENTRY AFTER MASS INCARCERATION A Wising Up Listening Project
Heather Tosteson and Charles D. Brockett
This book describes a six-year listening project on reentry that took place at the crest of an unusual wave of bipartisan criminal justice reform in Georgia, one of our most punishing states. Its primary intended audience is common citizens, like us, concerned about the reality of mass incarceration but unsure how to engage. . .READ MORE
PRESIDENT BIDEN AND PROSPECTS FOR IMMIGRATION REFORM
Charles D. Brockett, PhD
This ebook meant for the common citizen portrays trends in public opinion about immigration in 21 easily read graphs. These trends are also related to their broader context: Will President Biden succeed where his last three predecessors failed? Certainly it will be a big challenge, but it can be done if we let the public show the way.