It has been a turbulent three years for the group that founded the Four Corners Center for Spiritual Living in 2007.
After the congregation split over whether or not to continue its association with Science of Mind, one group became the Namaste Center of Spiritual Oneness two years ago, while the Four Corners Center for Spiritual Living moved its services to the Durango Arts Center and began teleworshipping with Michael Beckwith. And now Namaste, which hired the Rev. George Harris as its first pastor in 2008, is expanding its services into Durango and Pagosa Springs.
“In August, we had a visioning committee vision the growth of Namaste,” Harris said of the group, which has been worshipping first in Bayfield and now in Gem Village. “What came out was to start services in Durango.”
At the same time, they decided to rent a room from the Unitarian Universalist Fellowship in Pagosa Springs for two Saturdays a month. So now Harris stays on the move during the weekend. He drives to Pagosa on Saturday afternoon for a service before driving back to his home between Bayfield and Durango. On Sunday, he drives into Durango for a 9 a.m. service and then back to Gem Village for an 11 a.m. service. The new schedule started at the beginning of October.
“On Sunday afternoon, I have to crash for a while,” he said with a smile.
The services are starting small, with between four and 10 people attending at each new site. He is spending a lot of time marketing the expanded offerings.
“I had a table at the Student Union at Fort Lewis College, and 10 students took brochures, saying they’ve been looking for a spiritual place here,” he said.
Namaste is a Sanskrit word that means “The light of God in me recognizes and honors the light of God in you.” Harris, who has been ordained in metaphysics by the International University of Metaphysics in Sedona, Ariz., and spiritual peacemaking by the Beloved Community in Ashland, Ore., preaches messages in both disciplines. He also brings his skills as a relationship counselor to bear.
“We’re all in some kind of relationship,” he said. “Relationships with other people, relationships with ourselves and relationships with God.”
Harris says he’s not there to be an intermediary to God.
“I’m just here to help people open to the source,” he said, “to an illumined mind, awakened heart and realized soul. All this is to help us love as God loves.”
Namaste welcomes people of all faiths.
“It doesn’t matter whether you’re Christian, Muslim or Hindu, you’re a divine being,” Harris said. “We’re all here by divine appointment.”
His ultimate goal is to help people make a choice to be happy and joyful.
“We make that choice every day, whether to live in love or fear and anger,” he said. “When you’re just listening to other people’s negative opinions, you have no idea who they really are.”