Click here to return to Home Page

owl.gif... . . . . Facsimile web page

Rowe Conference Center

What Makes Rowe Special? ... Read on.

We're not on the Fringe, We're on the Frontier by Marianne Williamson & Jean Houston
How can we take action to create a more positive future? And what do we do if we're attacked for challenging the status quo? Jean Houston, a protegee of Joseph Campbell and Margaret Mead, has taught thousands of people in her workshops and year-long Mystery School the importance of "living in constant dialogue with myth." Marianne Williamson, the dynamic interpreter of A Course In Miracles, speaks eloquently for a new, spiritually based politics in her new book The Healing of America. They both believe the times are calling us to link our personal quests to the larger mission of transforming society.
These master teachers regularly put their principles into action in social service - Williamson's charitable organizing on behalf of people with life-threatening diseases, Houston's broad-reaching multicultural educational work - and as consultants to those in power. Through these activities both experienced the media's sting. For Williamson critics sniped about her ambitions and managerial skills. Houston, who'd operated in high places with relative anonymity for 30 years, had her role as an advisor to Hillary Clinton seriously misrepresented.
The work of Rowe Camp and Conference Center is not often articulated. Indeed, since each person has his or her own sense of what that faith is, it has seemed wise to let it be. Words can only point to the reality they represent.

Many of our workshop leaders are able to give voice to both the ineffable mystery behind our existence and the concrete problems we are facing on the planet. They speak what needs to be spoken with a strength that touches us deeply. We are proud to offer a forum for them to share their wisdom with all who join us here.

It's easy to forget about wisdom, to get caught up in the daily business of how much we are ahead or behind, how our buildings are doing, whether we have enough money to hire another staff person, or how we interact with each other. This is the day-to-day drama of our lives and the focus of our responsibilities.

It is easy to forget that we share something vital, something profound. Though we rarely speak of this love of wisdom, it pervades our lives. Perhaps we fear it isn't cool, or sophisticated, to articulate something so tender and gentle. But it is pervasive it underlies so much of what happens here every day. It is part of our magic, one of the cornerstones of Rowe.

Another cornerstone is a faith in human beings and a recognition of the fundamental beauty and goodness of people. We are willing to see people not just in the context of our daily lives, but in the larger context of a greater beauty, the context of life on Earth and the beauty of creation. The only proper response to this beauty may be to fall on our knees in awe, in praise and in thanksgiving. To rejoice. And to realize this beauty extends into the entire universe.

When we stop to listen and to see, we find that Rowe is a place where this beauty flows freely. It is another part of our magic. We, too, find it hard to pause, to take a deep breath, to allow ourselves to see this magic that is everywhere.

Perhaps this is why people love it here at Rowe. We provide a little space, and our guests give themselves a little time from their day-to-day lives. It doesn't take much, it's just around the corner, just down the road, or in the eyes of the person across the table from us at lunch. Perhaps it would be better if it were more mystical, more mysterious, less common, but it isn't. It is everywhere. We take it in every time we breathe in, and every time we breath out we send it back out into the universe.

Perhaps it would be better if this faith were to remain implicit, unspoken. A painter, unable to articulate his or her work, would be wise, perhaps, to point to the paintings on the wall. In our case, we can only point to the exquisite experiences that take place here in the conference room, in the farmhouse living room, in the chapel, over our sumptuous meals, and in our relation to the forest that surrounds us on three sides and the exquisite little village that bounds us on the fourth.

We invite you to join us in experiencing the profound connections people make here with themselves, to each other, and to nature. Whatever this mysterious thing is The foundation of the faith that underlies and supports, we have it. There is a magic here, wise, beautiful, undeniable. We invite you to join us.

e-mail us at: or call: (413) 339-4216
Copyright © 1998. Rowe Center All Rights Reserved

Click here to return to Home Page