April 2, 2024

Issue 8

Pensive: A Global Journal of Spirituality & the Arts

Pensive Journal Issue 8

Dear Readers,

We welcome you warmly to the eighth issue of Pensive: A Global Journal of Spirituality & the Arts. As you turn these pages, wherever you are in your journey as a reader, creator, or spiritual seeker, we embrace you as members of the Pensive community. This space is crafted for your exploration, and this issue is our heartfelt offering to you. Let the words and images resonate with you, providing challenge, inspiration, and solace for your spirit, along with the courage to navigate the path ahead.

For each issue of Pensive, we read thousands of submissions from around the globe, never knowing quite what to expect. We relish the works of emerging voices, alongside acclaimed writers and artists. Our editorial process is one of discovery, dialogue, and sometimes vigorous debate. We hope to form an experience of authentic community, so rare in our world today.

In this issue, we proudly present offerings from an exceptionally diverse group of contributors, each speaking the truths they’ve encountered. Taken together, these pieces form a tapestry of interweaving themes. Among these themes are the practices of mindfulness and contemplation; the spirit of gratitude; the mystery of family, relationships, and love; experiences of grief and loss, the diversities (and commonalities) of religious, spiritual, and humanist experiences; the shared vision of peace and justice in times of war and horrific suffering; and, finally, our spiritual engagement with the natural world. With these themes in mind, and in the face of the global tragedies we are witnessing, we invite you to discover sources of healing and hope, for as one of our authors observes, “The world aches for the gentle wisdom of morning light and a day that opens full of hope.”

As we publish this issue in Spring 2024, we want to amplify voices that need to be heard and raise awareness of suffering too long overlooked by those of us who are privileged or afraid to engage. We are surrounded by horrors, witnessing climate catastrophes, creeping autocracy, and genocides that displace millions of innocent lives. As artists, learners, and agents of change, we are challenged to reflect on how to best turn our sorrow and outrage into action. Core to Pensive’s mission is challenging structural oppression, and expanding our collective consciousness of oppressive systems fueled by nationalism, racism, and unbridled capitalism.

We believe these realities must be acknowledged in our own artistic and spiritual spaces. The work for change is global, but it begins with the individual’s willingness to seek liberation within their communities and beyond.

This journal is one small step toward building a more just, peaceful, and sustainable world. With our global online readership, our issues reach many communities, where we hope they are carefully considered. Differences have existed since the beginning of humanity, while dialogue is all too rare in today’s polarized world. The arts are a means of dialogue and action. We hope Pensive sparks meaningful conversations. Please enjoy this issue and let it serve as a bridge to connect with others and reflect together.

With heartfelt gratitude – and warm wishes of love, hope, and strength to all,

– The Pensive Editorial Board