Spiritual Direction

Education, training, certifications and experience: I earned a master’s degree in mental health counseling from Old Dominion University. Although counseling and spiritual direction are not identical, I find many counseling skills to be transferable to my work with directees. I completed my two-year spiritual direction certification program through the Spiritual Direction Institute (Tidewater branch) founded by Msgr. Chester Michael (author of Prayer and Temperament along with many other classic Christian texts). Over the years, I have attended several workshops on the Enneagram and on Centering Prayer. These formal training experiences are built upon the foundation of my own spiritual journey which began to deepen in 2000 through my training as a yoga teacher, regular practice of vipassana meditation, and daily praying of the Divine Office. In 2007-2008, I spent seven months living and working in a Carmelite hermitage where the horarium consisted of five hours of prayer and four hours of manual labor. I have a deep love and appreciation for sinking into God in silence and solitude, and bringing the fruits of that time into connection with the world and acts of service. In 2014, I became a vowed member of an ecumenical Benedictine monastic group called the Community of Solitude. I am also an experienced registered yoga teacher (E-RYT) with Yoga Alliance, teaching since 2000. Finally (and probably most importantly!), I have been in spiritual direction myself since 2004.

Specialties and/or focus areas: I enjoy bringing insights from the Enneagram and MBTI into spiritual direction when appropriate for directees. I believe journaling, dream work, and directed reading can be useful at times. Christian spirituality can be divided into many broad, but always related, charisms. My favorites are Franciscan, Carmelite, and Benedictine/Camaldolese. I am also comfortable addressing Buddhist and Hindu/yogic spiritual practices for directees who are drawn to such practices as a way of deepening their life as Christians. My office space allows me to combine restorative yoga with spiritual direction for anyone who is interested.

Availability: I am available for meetings at my office in Norfolk on Friday afternoons/evenings. Meetings outdoors or via Zoom can be arranged during weekdays or Saturday afternoons.

Style of direction: As a spiritual director, I aim to meet my directees where they are. Every subject is acceptable to me. I create a space where directees can bring all of themselves into the presence of God where, together, we aim to listen for guidance.

Personal information and interests: I have a bachelor’s degree in anthropology and spent a summer working on an archaeological dig in Hawaii. I danced ballet as a child and modern dance in college. Currently, I enjoy working out at the gym, teaching yoga, listening to Jungian podcasts, and reading all sorts of books that deepen my spiritual life.

Contact me for more details on whether Spiritual Direction is right for you!

Jivani Lisa