The ASI is starting a new initiative aimed to build and strengthen community and peer support for spiritual teachers, counselors, and coaches. Spiritual leadership can be a pretty complex and isolating role, and when things are challenging we often have few or no colleagues that we can lean on to share what is really going on for us, and get honest caring feedback. The ASI is looking into ways of supporting small groups of spiritual teachers who want to build peer support circles of collegial friendship working toward deep trust. In parallel with ASI’s ‘Honor Code of Ethics and Good Practice‘ for teachers (and Ethical Guidelines for students) the ASI wants to support each teacher in articulating their own values, and reflecting authentically about the difficult tradeoffs and nuances each encounters in spiritual leadership. A peer support group is there to help you navigate the specific territories of tension or uncertainty that you encounter, through deep listening, loving inquiry, and sharing their own experiences with similar issues. Support groups are also there to help you celebrate your skills and successes and co-embrace the glory of life, love, and light in general!

We are in early stages and this project and it will grow slowly, starting with a couple of prototype groups—but we are quite excited about the potential it holds for deepening our various gifts of spiritual service. ASI will provide basic logistical resources for groups to self-form and self-govern—we are not in charge of (or responsible for) what happens in these groups. We can help groups craft ground-rules and goals, and can be a clearing house for successful group process structures. Some groups will comprise colleagues that already know each other and want to go deeper; and others will be newly formed groups. Building enough trust to vulnerably share the very “human” side of awakening with peers takes time and a solid container, and we hope that over time ASI will be able to offer support for facilitation or facilitation training to groups who want it.

If this sounds interesting to you, let us know! And if you already have experience with such groups, we would love to hear from and learn from you.

Please email your interest to peersupport@spiritual-integrity.org