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Contemplative Motherhood Podcast
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Contemplative Motherhood Podcast

Author: Erin Thomas & Chelsea Whipple

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A Sacred Space for talking about Contemplative Practices, Spirituality + Messy Motherhood. We seek the Divine Presence amidst the Beautiful Chaos of Motherhood and share our failures, our triumphs, and our missteps. Your hosts on this journey are Erin Thomas and Chelsea Whipple. To get in touch with Erin and Chelsea email them at Check out our main website:
17 Episodes
In this episode, Erin discusses the spiritual practice of gratitude and what that may look like as a practice in companionship with our children. Unpack the concepts of a competing culture and how we can be present and intentional by guiding our children in the spiritual practice of gratitude. 
Join Erin  Thomas in another episode of bonus content from "The Contemplative Child." On this week's episode, Erin will discuss the importance of margin for our children. What is margin and how do we achieve this in our family lives? Erin will also unpack the hurried lifestyle components that feel contrary to Contemplative Life, how that impacts our children and why this lays a foundation for practical spiritual disciplines. Erin will also provide simple steps for integrating the practice of silence with our children, a seemingly impossible task. This is the quentessential episode of a "gentle start" to spiritual practices with our children.  
Join Erin in the second episode of bonus content, "The Contemplative Child."  Take time to sort through the value of habits and routines in a child's life through the life span. Sit with Erin as she discusses how this alone can transform moments of our daily lives into Sacred space for connection with the Divine and with each other. Erin will unpack her academic study of child development, how habits create pathways for growth, and discuss the culmination of how little moments create a larger template for children's spiritual formation. 
In a bonus episode with a child centered lens, Erin takes us down the road of building the framework of a Contemplative Child. Erin discusses spiritual formation in children and the interwoven aspects of a child's development. She also touches on the importance of recognizing unrealistic expectations and laying heavy shame based responsibilities on ourselves as parents when it comes to our children's spiritual development. Tune in to hear how the framework of being a "listening companion" for your child can be an act of freedom from parenting beyond our emotional capacity and shame based children's spiritual development narratives. Lay out a vision and get back to the basics with "The Contemplative Child." Featured  Resources : "Spiritual Conversations with Children"
In the last episode of Season 1, Erin and Chelsea discuss what they have individually noticed about Season 1 and the topics presented. They dive deeper into the effect their kids have on their spiritual lives, why saying No was such a difficult episode for both of them, and saying goodbye to mom guilt. Erin, who recently went on a retreat, talks about her experience and what she discovered about the contemplative lifestyle that made her change her outlook. Nothing is left on the table in this episode.To keep in touch with them please email them at contemplativemotherhoodpodcast@gmail.comLook out for details of Season 2!
In part 2 of our conversation, we unpack specifically motherhood being a spiritual practice both the negative aspects and the positive aspects. Motherhood is not all that we are but it is a big part of how we relate to the world. Instead of thinking spiritual practices add more to our to-do list, we reframe the question of how can we look at being a mother through the lens of the Divine? Join us as we dive deeper into the conversation and find ways to be who we are, chaotic and beautiful.
This episode is part 1 of a 2-part conversation that will be shared in the exploration of the topic “Is Motherhood a spiritual practice?”Throughout season one, you have heard us unpack some of the basic tenants of spiritual practices in our own lives. These are not exhaustive and to be honest, they barely scratch the surface of the Contemplative Motherhood lifestyle. But for the following two episodes , we hope to weave together tokens from this season that will aid us all in putting together a tapestry of the picture of the Contemplative Motherhood life.Contemplative Books that Erin and Chelsea have found helpful on their journey:An Altar in the World by Barbara Brown TaylorBeing Nobody, Going Nowhere by Ayya KhemaEarth, Our Original Monestary by Christine PainterFalling Upward  by Richard RohrMerton’s Palace of Nowhere by James FinleyTales from the Land of the Sufis by Mojdeh Bayat and Mohammad Ali JamniaThe Contemplative Heart by James FinleyThe Practice of the Presence of God by Brother Lawrence, translated by Marshall DavisThe Sayings of the Desert Fathers translated by Benedicata Ward, SLGThe Way of Paradox by Meister Eckhart, translated by Cyprian Smith, OSBThe Way of the Heart by Henry Nouwen*Note: This is not an exhaustive list and one that continuously is added to as our journey progresses...
Saying No can be the hardest word to say as a mother. Maybe not to our kids but to the outside world. In this episode, Erin and Chelsea tackle how Saying No can become a contemplative practice, when we learn what to say no to and why it is important. Often, it is our ego saying yes instead of our heart center. The discussion will center around how operating out of our heart center and protecting our boundaries can lead to a more intimate life for ourselves and our children, allow us to get to know ourselves better, and give us space for intentional work.
In this episode, Erin and Chelsea discuss the importance of alone time away from kids, activities, chores, and finding space with the Holy. It is not always easy but solitude creates openings where we get to know ourselves, reset our priorities, and discover the Sacredness of our daily life. Chelsea describes different ways solitude can be accomplished in the midst of the daily and how, for her, solitude gave way to a deeper appreciation and compassion for her kids. Erin and Chelsea also dive deeper on what to do during solitude time and how to throw away the to do lists and what's next, in order to be present to the Divine.
In this episode, Erin and Chelsea explore navigating the unexpected (and sometimes unwelcome) moments of life. These moments can crack open unexpected spiritual practices that teach us the desires, needs, and benefits of intentional practices. Listen as Erin shares how deep grief led her to the practice of gratitude. This shift in perspective after overcoming the loss of a child led her to an unexpected moment of desire, the desire to pursue gratitude as a spiritual practice. 
In this episode Erin and Chelsea tackle our everyday mundane routines and rhythms and transform them into a Sacred Connectedness. What does that mean? Finding that the everyday mundane can be an invitation to enter a Sacred space. When we stay present in these activities they can become rituals. Rituals that begin to open a Divine Presence surrounding us while we do laundry, dishes, drive kids around, pick up the same toys over and over, etc.
In this episode Erin and Chelsea use their natural surroundings as a backdrop to connecting with all that the Divine has given us. Using personal examples of how their kids showed them the beauty of nature and how we can grasp this inner beauty while exploring the physical beauty of nature. They have plenty of oops moments of being a mom outdoors with kids who dare to venture more than they are comfortable with but through that vulnerability comes a realization of how connected kids are to the Spirit. 
In this episode, Erin and Chelsea break down what it means to find stillness and become aware of the Sacred Presence even when the day gets off to a horrid start. We believe that stillness and parenthood is not oxymoron but sometimes it takes a bit of seeking to craft what stillness looks like for a mother. Join us as we talk about stillness in our own lives, whether its a beautiful and simple gray chair or sitting down to eat a meal.
In this episode, Erin and Chelsea break down the often intimidating word: Contemplative.  Oftentimes, contemplative gets used as contemporary but this can miss the importance of the spiritual teachers who left much knowledge for us and had much to teach us about a contemplative lifestyle. The episode also dives deeper into different faith traditions, languages for the Sacred One, and glimpses of what being a mother can mean for a contemplative.
Listen in as Erin gives a first-hand account of her journey towards contemplation and motherhood. Her insight, experience and vulnerability will leave you wanting more and living out this deeper knowing within us.
Listen as Chelsea dives deeper into why she calls herself a contemplative, what does that mean, what led her to desire this lifestyle, and what she has learned about being a contemplative mother.
Trailer for Season 1

Trailer for Season 1


Listen for a preview of our first season of Contemplative Motherhood podcast. We discuss the inspiration for this podcast and what our first season is all about. Thanks for listening in! Tune in for Episode 1 on May 24, 2021.
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