Have you heard about the mysteriously titled documentary, The Secret? It was featured on Oprah this week and on a Larry King episode promoted as, “How to attract more money, a new career, and a better love life into your experience today”. Have you been awaiting the film release of Conversations With God? Have you ever attended inspirational film screenings at a local church in order to see titles like, What the (Bleep) Do We Know? If “inspirational” is one of your favorite film genres, and you’re bored with the choices offered by Netflix, then a welcome alternative may be the Spiritual Cinema Circle…

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This DVD-of-the-month club was launched in the spring of 2004 by Stephan Simon, the Hollywood producer of Somewhere In Time (Christopher Reeve and Christopher Plummer) and the made-in-heaven Robin Williams movie, What Dreams May Come.

For $21.00 per month plus shipping Spiritual Cinema Circle members get four or more films on DVDs to keep – no returns necessary. One is a feature film, and the others are short films.

Simon maintains that at the core of all these films are fundamental questions about our lives: What is most important? Where are we going? Why are we here?

A fine example is the 15 minute selection from January’s collection, The Danish Poet. Charming with its whimsical animation and simple characters, and narrated by Liv Ullman, this short film answers the question: Where would I be now if certain steps I’d taken had been withheld, or certain decisions that once seemed inconsequential, had been decided differently? Retracing the simple steps of a Danish poet teaches us that all the coincidental details of our life intermingled with others’ lives have delivered us to the special place we each now reside.

The tantalizing question brought up by the feature film, Illusion, the Circle’s feature pick for May, 2007, is, “What if I could do this life over? Illusion features 88 year-old Kirk Douglas as a once-famous film director alone and remorseful in his final days. The character is visited by a ghost image of his late friend who shows him the effect of his neglectful parenting on his son’s life.

Simon says, “The purpose of spiritual cimena is to make us feel better about being human.” His selections also seem to help us feel more hopeful about our potential to build worthwhile lives.

Start an Inspirational Film Discussion Group

The monthly mailings lend themselves perfectly to the formation of film discussion groups, especially because the Spiritual Cinema Circle already provides the discussion questions. 2-3 questions per film are included, both on a 3-color insert inside the cases, and right on the DVDs themselves. Additionally, preceding each of the films is a brief introduction by the group’s co-founder, Simon.

Maybe, the world’s largest spiritual film discussion group is the company’s annual Film Festival-at-Sea held on a cruise ship. This month’s festival will set sail on March 31-April 7.

Simon and his Spiritual Cinema collegues have recently produced their first film. It is their February 2007 featured selection, Conversations With God, based on the best-selling non-fiction book by Neale Donald Walsch.

Just a few years before he wrote his first book, Neale Donald Walsch was homeless with a broken neck. He certainly had no intention of writing 22 books, or becoming the New York Times best-selling author of “Conversations with God”. In desperate need of help, he was only crying out to God.

The Spiritual Cinema Circle calls itself “America’s fastest growing DVD Club” and delivers to members in 70 countries. They are eager for new members, though, using free trials and bonus disks (not to mention cruises) to garner attention.

For instance, new members signing up this month will receive Conversations With God, along with a welcome gift — a bonus DVD called Soulmates, containing “6 short films about the magic of relationships”. They’ll give you a trial membership if you wait and sign up in March or April — a month’s DVDs for free, not including a shipping fee of five bucks.

Here’s a more detailed sampling of films and documentaries the circle has featured since its inception:

  • Ram Dass: Fierce Grace, about the former Harvard professor-turned-spiritual guru and inspirational author
  • Farther Than The Eye Can See, about the blind man, Erik Weihenmayer, who scaled Mount Everest
  • Stuck, a short about people trapped in an elevator who share their life stories
  • The Yogis of Tibet documentary expands our concept of meditation
  • Ryan’s Well, about an elementary school child who raises money to dig a well that provides water to an entire village in Africa and spawns a heavyweight charity
  • The Secret, a documentary that assembles best selling authors, coaches and philosophers including Jack Canfield, Bob Proctor, John Gray, and Dr. Joe Vitale to explain The meta-physical Law of Attraction and its application in various areas of life, from health and wealth to career and relationships.


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