Spain: Spirituality Workshop – Interreligious Series
Prepared by FFWPU Spain
Espacio Ronda, Madrid, Spain, January to March 2018
JANUARY – First lecture
With Vikrampal Singh, international teacher of Kundalini Yoga and Gong. They concluded with a meditation with Gong. “The first time I heard a Gong I shuddered, it was an intense feeling, its sound entered through each of the pores of my skin and then its power dragged me towards the rotating force of the cosmos, the sound of OM or AUM enveloped me. The Gong makes the door to the invisible become visible. “Vikrampal Singh. A little about Vikrampal Singh: Bachelor of Economics and Business Administration, black belt of karate 3rd dan, professor of the Pontifical University of Comillas (1990-2014), international teacher of Kundalini Yoga, Sungazing (Solar Yoga according to Hira Ratan Manek), trained in Personal Development and Systemic Therapy, formed in Social Triformation and Anthroposophy, Gong Master Training.
Second lecture: With Olga Cebrián, network of meditators “Friends of the Desert”. A conference on meditation and shadows: how through meditation we can purify those wounds that hit us without realizing and that little by little we can redeem thanks to the transforming power of silence, a proposal of meditation in the line of parents and mothers of the desert. Without silence there is no word, without stillness there is no self-control and self-control gives us freedom. The adventure of silence transforms us and as soon as we start before we will discover them. Olga Cebrián is a co-founder of aomm.tv, the world’s leading platform for online yoga and meditation classes, teaching courses and talks on the transformative power of silence, humanistic therapy (Gestalt) and trainer, professor of communication 2.0 at the UCM , disciple of Pablo d’Ors and member of Friends of the Desert.
FEBRUARY – First lecture
“The human being as the greatest spiritual value for all religions” A conference given by José María Calderón Castro, Catholic priest, Diocesan Delegate of Misiones. Diocesan Priest of Madrid, he is the Chaplain of the Missionaries of Charity, founded by Saint Teresa of Calcutta, and Episcopal Delegate for Missions of the Diocese of Madrid and National Deputy Director of the Pontifical Mission Societies. He is the parish priest of the Church of the Sacred Heart of Jesus in Madrid, a center of welcome for the missionaries and a place of reference for the people of Madrid to know the missionary task of the Diocese of Madrid. For years José María Calderón takes advantage of the holidays to go to live with missionaries and help them in their work, often accompanied by young people who have concerns and who want to offer their free time to others in helping the most disadvantaged.
Second lecture: “Ecstasy and religion: the story of the extended states of conscience”. A conference by Javier Esteban, writer, professor and director of the ‘Encuentros con su subtil’ cycle at the Conde Duque Cultural Center in Madrid
Javier Esteban is a doctor from the University Camilo José Cela and a Master in psychoanalysis from the UCM. He has worked as a counselor and dream therapist for fifteen years. Professor in the master’s degree in Anthropological-based Psychoanalysis at the University of Salamanca and disciple of Luis Cencillo in the art of interpreting and integrating dreams.
Javier Esteban knows different traditions and dream masters. He is the author of several books and articles on states of consciousness. He currently directs the series of conferences Meetings with the Subtle.
MARCH – First lecture
A conference of His Eminence Mor Nicolaos Matti Abd Alahad, Metropolitan Archbishop of the Orthodox Syrian Church of Antioch and All East in Spain. The Syrian people are direct descendants of the ancient Aramaic people who in biblical times were settled between the Tigris- Euphrates and the Mediterranean coast. Aramaic was the language commonly spoken in the Palestine of Jesus time.
The Syrian Church is the first Christian Church. It was in Antioquia where the disciples of Jesus received the name of “Christians”. In this city resided the apostles Peter and Paul. From there came the first missionaries who evangelized Asia and Europe. Syria was also the field of Christological controversies that originated the religious division in the East and the constitution of the Syro-Orthodox Church. The Muslim conquest of 636 did nothing but consecrate this division. From that date, the Syrian Church was retreating more on itself in order to preserve its identity. Over the centuries it was persecuted by the Byzantines, Mongols, Turks … In 1915 there was a calamity known as the “Year of the Sword”: one third of the Orthodox Syrians who inhabited that area were killed. This originated massive migrations to other regions of the Middle East, to Europe and to America. The appearance of the so- called Islamic State caused new persecutions and an exodus of Christians. Currently, the Syrian Orthodox Church is spread throughout Syria, Lebanon, Iraq, Turkey, Israel, India and among emigrants in Europe and America.
His Eminence Mor Nicolaos Matti Abd Alahad (Malekieh, Al-Hasakah, Syria, 1970): In 1984 he began his theological studies in the monastery of San Efrén de Maarat Saidnaya (Syria). In 1991 he was a monastic tonsured and in 1994 he received presbyteral ordination. A couple of years later the Patriarch Ignacio Zaqueo I Iwas sent him to Greece to complete his theological studies at the University of Athens, where he graduated in 1997. Upon his return to Syria, he was appointed dean of the monastery of San Efren de Maarat Saidnaya In 1998 he was appointed counselor of the Superior Council of the Syrian Orthodox Church in Damascus. In 2004 he was sent to Argentina as patriarchal vicar. On April 17, 2005 he was consecrated Metropolitan Archbishop and patriarchal vicar with the name of Nicolaos for Argentina. In June 2015 the Holy Synod of the Syrian Orthodox Patriarchate of Antioch agreed to appoint Mor Nicolaos Matti Abd Alahad as Metropolitan Archbishop and Patriarchal Vicar of the Orient in Spain in the care of Syrian Orthodox immigrants and refugees since the beginning of the armed conflict in the Middle East; more than 700 families in Madrid, Valencia, Seville and the Mediterranean coast.
Second lecture: A conference by Miguel Aguado Arnáez, a Buddhist, has been a deputy in the Assembly of Madrid; he collaborates in the media on environmental issues. Formed in Spain, the United States of America and France in institutional, business and political communication, as well as in marketing and business management. In the previous term 2011-2015 he was a deputy in the Assembly of Madrid, being spokesman in the commissions of health, environment and Telemadrid. Likewise, he was previously Candidate for the Mayor of the Municipality of Tres Cantos (Madrid) and Speaker-Councilor of his Municipal Group. He collaborates in training in different organizations and universities such as: Univ. Complutense de Madrid, Univ. Autónoma de Madrid, Univ. Ramón Llull de Barcelona, CIEMAT, IED and others. For years, he has collaborated with various media of written and audiovisual communication regarding the environment in general. He currently has a weekly space in the program MÁS VALE TARDE of La Sexta on everyday ecology and another of similar characteristics, also weekly, on the program El Círculo de Telemadrid.
Baptized as a Buddhist 25 years ago. He always defines himself as “a Buddhist from Valladolid”. Practice Buddhism in its Mahayana Tradition (School of Tibetan Buddhism of SS The Dalai Lama). In 2003 he participated with other renowned authors such as Federico Mayor Zaragoza, Boff, Gutierrez-Rubi, Benjamín Forcano, … in the book SPIRITUALIDAD Y POLÍTICA, with a chapter entitled: ZEN POLITICS.