Key Figures in Women’s Spirituality
to Headline So. California Conference on 
“Women’s Wisdom” 

By MaryAnn Ready 



September 23 & 24, 2000, has been set as the date for “Women’s Wisdom: Exploring Diverse Spiritual Perspectives, Practices, and Paths,” a two-day conference that will offer a rare opportunity for women in Southern California to investigate spiritual development and diverse contemplative religious traditions from a feminine perspective. The event will be guided by outstanding women wisdom teachers, and will incorporate presentations, meditation, music, prayer, and celebration. 

The goal of “Women’s Wisdom” is to bring together women of all ages, backgrounds, professions, and religious traditions to promote spiritual development, build community, and explore the link between spirituality, social action, and conscious contribution. 

Internationally recognized leaders, teachers, and authors in women’s spirituality will be featured speakers and facilitators for the weekend of spiritual exploration: 

Sylvia Boorstein is a co-founding teacher at Spirit Rock Meditation Center in Woodacre, CA. She holds a doctorate in psychology, and has been a practicing psychotherapist since 1967. Of her third book, “That’s Funny You Don’t Look Buddhist: On Being a Faithful Jew and a Passionate Buddhist”, the San Francisco Chronicle says, “[Her] greatest achievement is in giving a sense of the richness that comes with opening to more than one way of spiritual observance.”

 Lama Palden Drolma has been a student and practitioner of Buddhism for more than 25 years, and was one of the first western women to be authorized as a Lama. Founder of the Sukhasiddhi Foundation in Marin County, she is a teacher of Buddhist philosophy and meditation, and a licensed and practicing psychotherapist. Lama Palden has a deep interest in helping to make the teachings and practices of Tibetan Buddhism accessible and practicable for Westerners

Catherine Regan, Ph.D. is a spiritual director and clinical psychologist practicing in San Francisco. She has broad experience guiding retreats and workshops, as well as providing training for spiritual directors. Regan has a special interest in contemplative practices and their benefits in our individual and collective lives, and brings a Catholic perspective to “Women’s Wisdom”. 

Silvia Nakkach, M.A., M.T., an internationally accredited specialist in cross-cultural music therapy, will be the featured musical presenter at “Women’s Wisdom”. She is an award-winning composer, singer, author, and psychologist whose approach to singing as a healing art integrates classical and indigenous traditions of chants with energy awareness and spirituality. 

Catherine Britton-Bailey, L.C.S.W., will act as program weaver for “Women’s Wisdom”. Currently the coordinator of Oncology Support Services at the Hoag Cancer Center in Newport Beach, Britton-Bailey has a special interest in the psychological and spiritual well-being of women, and has led groups and workshops since 1975. 

“Women’s Wisdom” is being produced by WSP, an Irvine-based group founded by MaryAnn Ready and Bonnie L’Allier.  Says L’Allier, “Spirituality and spiritual practice are becoming increasingly important to the lives of Americans, and especially to women, yet there have been few opportunities for women practitioners in Southern California to come together and explore the unique dimensions of feminine spirituality with women wisdom teachers. This event will allow them to explore, to learn, and to be nourished and empowered by women’s wisdom.” 

The site for “Women’s Wisdom” will be The Sisters of St. Joseph Center in Orange, California. Saturday and Sunday sessions will begin at 9:30 a.m. and extend into the evening on Saturday. Lunch both days and supper on Saturday will be included in the $160 registration fee. Scholarships may be available. 

For registration information, contact WSP at P.O. Box 5133, Irvine, CA 92616. Phone (949) 646-1775; fax (949) 646-5893; or e-mail to .

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