Upcoming Events
  • Herbert W. Bronstein
  • Jim Kenney
05/22/2019
9:30 AM - 11:30 AM
Morning Workshop
Common Ground Deerfield
 In a discussion that will be compelling for Jews and non-Jews alike, Herb and Jim will touch on a range of topics including assimilation, social justice and Jewishness, eclectic practice, matrilineal descent, and the challenge of Israel.
  • Jim Kenney
  • Alan Race
  • Harold Kasimow
  • Peter Huff
05/28/2019
9:30 AM - 11:30 AM
Morning Workshop
Common Ground Deerfield
Jim welcomes Visiting Scholars Alan Race, Harold Kasimow, and Peter Huff in a wide-ranging discussion of Alan and Harold's new book, Pope Francis and Interreligious Dialogue. 
  • Alan Race
  • Jim Kenney
05/29/2019
9:30 AM - 11:30 AM
Morning Workshop
Common Ground Deerfield
Jim Kenney and Alan Race reminisce about their long friendship and their shared experiences in the world of interreligious encounter, dialogue, and common action.
  • Ahmad Sadri
06/04/2019
9:30 AM - 11:30 AM
Morning Workshop
Common Ground Deerfield
This topic — turned into a multimedia program performed by Yo-Yo Ma’s “Silk Road Ensemble in Santa Barbara, Los Angeles, Irvine, Berkely and the Kennedy Center for Performing Arts at Washington DC — was conceived to explore the idea of a hero, as opposed to a super-hero. The lecture will feature slides of the show, in which Ahmad Sadri played a key role.
  • Pauline Viviano
06/05/2019
9:30 AM - 11:30 AM
Morning Workshop
Common Ground Deerfield
Can a contemplative life à la Thomas Merton make an impact in our world? In this talk we will explore various aspects of living a contemplative life and the difference it makes in our lives and in our world. What do we lose without contemplative living? What do we gain with it?
Common Ground Blog
Dear Friends

It’s a bittersweet time for all of us at Common Ground. Sadly, the time has come to send off our last Bulletin and to convene our closing series of great classes. But there is also a very happy note to be sounded. May 7 will mark the 45th anniversary of the day when Ron Miller and I signed the articles of incorporation for CG. Not many non-profit organizations flourish for so long.
Common Ground prides itself on its faculty. Most of our resource persons hold academic positions, but all have considerable experience and expertise in one or more fields. And, most important, they're all good teachers!

As we begin our final class wave, touch base once again with our superb teachers!
Continue reading more on Common Ground Blog



Sea Change Blog
Why do so many people believe such unbelievable things? Why do others so easily see through "crazy claims?" There are at least two major value clusters -- Two Cultures -- in our popular and political discourse. They explain a great deal.

Click here for Jim Kenney's handout on "The Two Cultures."
We hear constantly about how deeply polarized our nation has become. I personally believe we're closer to 65%-35% on critical issues than the polarization pundits' imagined 50-50 split. But it's true that there are at least two major value clusters in our popular and political discourse. I think they  explain a great deal.
The renowned Oxford scholar of the history of fascism, Roger Griffin, offers a brilliant short definition of this ugly political dynamic. "Fascism is a political ideology whose mythic core in its various permutations is a palingenetic form of populist ultra-nationalism."
 
The most significant of these three identifiers is the first, "palingenetic." Derived from the Greek (palin, "again") and the Latin (genesis, "birth"), the word was ancient term for reincarnation. More recently, it simply means "rebirth." And rebirth is perhaps the core fascist idea. But a new birth demands a new past, that is, a reimagining of a culture's origins. As it seeks a "new birth" or a "reincarnation" of the culture and state, fascism requires a new (and necessarily false) account of who we are, who we were, and how we got to the here and now. Fake history is a necessary ingredient in the making of the fascist state.
 
Fascism demands a well-woven but deeply flawed account of a culture's origins, history, and vision of itself.

Continue reading more on Sea Change Blog
Latest Bulletin
The Common Ground Bulletin will no longer be printed.
 
About Common Ground

Founded by Ron Miller and Jim Kenney in 1975, Common Ground is a center for inquiry, study, and dialogue. Our primary concern is the human quest for understanding and the human pursuit of significance. While our endeavor began with the study of world religions and the commitment to inter-faith dialogue, our range of program offerings has been greatly expanded over the past several years.

Today, our primary focus is on the world's great cultural, philosophical, religious, and spiritual traditions and their implications for every dimension of human experience. Our course offerings include a tremendous variety of topics, including, but not limited to: history, literature, art, science, psychology, business, relationship, health, and personal growth. Our programs are shaped to meet the needs of all who are excited by ideas and serious about the quest.

Common Ground is for those who are already deeply grounded in their own traditions and for those who are still searching. It is a place for all who are fascinated by the convergence of the ancient with the modern, of East with West, and of spirituality with planetary reality. Common Ground brings together a knowledge of the past and a vision of the future for a better understanding of the present.

Common Ground is a fully registered not-for-profit 501(c)(3) corporation.