Odes to Joy: An Online Program for Advent – Nov 28, Dec 5, 12 and 19, 2020

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5 Lessons

Dates: Saturdays, November 28, December 5, 12 and 19, 2020 at 10:30 AM to 12:00 Noon Pacific Time
Format: Four live webinars on Zoom. One-hour lecture followed by Question and Answer and optional breakout sessions. All sessions will be recorded and will be posted on this page for access for registered students.
Faculty: Kayleen Asbo, PhD
Academic Credit: Bachelors- 1 credit, Masters – 1 credit; Doctoral – 1 credit
Questions: Please do not email faculty directly with any technology or registration issues. If you need technical assistance you can use the chat button located at the bottom, left-hand side of the screen and you can also email our Registrar, Veronica Saldias at


  • BA Level: $100
  • MA Level: $200
  • PhD Level: $300
  • Audit-No Credit: $100

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Out beyond ideas of wrongdoing and rightdoing, there is a field.
I will meet you there.


Odes to Joy: An Online Program for Advent


Course Description

Advent has historically been a time of waiting and longing, a time of introspection and quiet that culminates in the birth of joy.

In this online course, we will explore the art, music and archetypal themes of Advent: hope, peace, love and joy. We will also introduce contemplative practices that can provide inspiration for you to create and deepen your own experience of Advent that will help you listen more deeply to the still, small voice within at this inward time of year.

As part of the course, you will be guided to create your own Jungian inspired Advent book. Each week’s gathering will begin with a ritual of poetry and lighting of candles. We will then dive deeply into a one-hour lesson on a musical masterwork and an art history lesson that explores one of the key themes of Advent across the centuries. Small optional group break out groups (required for course credit) will follow where you will be invited to share your own creative responses you have created through art, poetry and reflection.

To include:

  • Music of Bach, Beethoven, Hildegard of Bingen and Arvo Part
  • Art of Klimt, Hildegard of Bingen, Van Eyck, Dante Gabriel Rossetti
  • Poetry of Rumi, Mary Oliver, Rilke, TS Eliot, Dorianne Laux, Marie Howe, Juan de la Cruz recited by Hari Meyers, Doug Von Koss and Peggy Rubin
  • Music chanting
  • Small break out groups
  • Instruction in how to create your own Advent altar and soul collage cards

Learning Outcomes:

By the end of the course students will have:

  • Acquired a basic understanding of the history and tradition of Advent
  • Explored some of the greatest treasures of art and music from across the centuries that are connected to the Advent season
  • Discovered contemplative practices to make their own experience of Advent personally meaningful
  • Created their own unique expression of Advent in image and/or word.

Weekly Schedule

Week 1 – November 28, 2020 • The Week of Hope

  • JS Bach Advent Cantata: Nunn Komm</li>
  • How to create an Advent altar and wreath
  • Introduction to creating an Advent SoulBook

Week 2 – December 5, 2020 • The Week of Preparation and Peace

  • JS Bach Cantata BWV 140: Wachat Auf
  • Van Eyck: Ghent Altarpiece

Week 3 – December 12, 2020 • The Week of Joy

  • Beethoven: Symphony No, 9 “Chorale”
  • Klimt: Beethoven Frieze

Week 4 – December 19, 2020 • The Week of Wonder and Love

  • O Antiphons, Hildegard
  • Seven Magnificent Antiphons, Arvo Part
  • Veni Veni Emmanuel
  • Images of Mary: Fra Lippi and Dante Gabriel Rossetti
  • Sharing of SoulBooks

Required Reading and Listening

If you are taking the course for academic credit, you will be required to do the following:

  1. Links to recordings of all musical pieces will be provided. Students are expected to listen to the recordings in their entirety at least twice: once before and once after the lecture.
  2. Enroll in 22 Days of Advent, an online series of daily reflections which will include links to all of the poetry and images studied in the class, with optional links to participate in devotional meditations and chat groups. Link to register for this series will be provided soon.

Post-Class Assignment (if taking course for academic credit):

Students taking the course for credit should submit a post-paper in addition to creating a Soul Book. Requirement for Bachelors level students is a 6-9 page post-paper, Masters level a 12-15 page paper, and Doctoral level 20-25 page paper, weaving together content from the lectures, discussions, reading materials and your experiences related to the entire course. Artistic work is welcome to supplement your paper.

Papers should be written in APA style, with footnotes.


Described by Rev. Dr. Lauren Artress as “A true Renaissance woman,” Kayleen Asbo is a scholar, composer, musician, poet, cultural historian and spiritual director who holds three advanced degrees in the fields of Mythology, Music and Psychology. Kayleen is the Artistic Director for the Mythica Foundation for the Arts and she has been on the faculties of the Pacifica Graduate Institute, UC Berkeley and Dominican University, where she has taught courses on subjects ranging from the History of Christian Mystics to Jung and the Red Book, from Dante to Beethoven and the Hero’s Journey. She has been a keynote lecturer on Mary Magdalene and the Sacred Feminine for the Assisi Institute of Depth Psychology in Italy, at Chartres Cathedral in France, the Graduate Theological Union in Berkeley and throughout the world for spiritual centers, churches and psychological organizations and has been a featured speaker at the conference on Women and History at Oxford University in England.