A popular gathering in 17th & 18th century France, the salon – or gathering – has its roots in 16th century Italian intellectual circles.
Described as a place for the exchange of ideas, the salon has a rich history in political and social history.
Historical records reveal that modern salon gatherings continued into the 1940’s in urban settings in the United States andEurope. It is likely that the upheaval of WWII and the technological revolutions that came on the heels of the end of that war changed the landscape and sent salons to the pages of history.
But are they only meant to be a footnote in history or is it time to revisit the concept of the salon through a 21st century lens?
As demographic changes turn traditional religious patterns on its head in the United States, I think it’s a great time to look at the salon model as perhaps the next great opportunity for building religious and spiritual communities.
New Thought scholars know that Florence Scovel Shinn held salons in her home in NYC early in the last century. Her writings that highlighted the learning journeys of many of her students became a foundation of modern New Thought writings.
And so I mentioned to a friend that I was interested in starting a salon, and she responded by setting a date and time. I can think of no better time spent than good friends, good food and shared wisdom in a casual atmosphere.
I can hardly wait! And I’ll be sure to share the experience later this weekend.
When you look at the historical progression of change and great ideas that emerged from France (don’t forget that our founding fathers traveled often to France and received French support for their war efforts against England) it’s EXCITING to think about the changes for good that may come out of this spiritual / New Thought salon.
Until next time,…
Vive le France!