Ponderings of our Spiritual Life Director 9-14-22

Love and connection were with us once again at last Wednesday night’s Dinner Worship. It is always a pleasure to get together over a meal and share our different perspectives. I wanted to place here, in the newsletter, the topic of conversation, for those of you who might be wondering just what it is we talk about, or just what it is that shapes the conversation that becomes the “sermon”.

I offered these two quotes:

The only true belonging is the courage to stand alone and belong to ourselves.

–Azriel ReShel

The ancient question, “Who am I?” inevitably leads to a deeper one: “Whose am I?” – because there is no identity outside of relationship. You cannot be a person by yourself. To ask “Whose am I” is to extend the question far beyond the little self absorbed self, and wonder: Who needs you? Who loves you? To whom are you accountable? To whom do you answer? Whose life is altered by your choices? With whose life is your own all bound up, inextricably, in obvious or invisible ways?

–Douglas Steer

Then, I asked folks to think about:

The above quotes present a tension in the way we might think about belonging. (Or, do they?). How does your faith and/or spiritual path call you to one of these quotes in particular, or does it call you to reconcile them somehow?

I invite you into a spiritual practice of journaling. If you were at Dinner Worship, journal about the experience of sharing and expand your thoughts and feelings further. If you were not, feel free to engage the above quotes and questions. Additionally, think about what these quotes mean in terms of being an individual and belonging to a Unitarian Universalist community. What does it mean in terms of social justice? Racial justice? Environmental justice?

For future Dinner Worships I will submit to the newsletter, in advance, our topic of conversation so that you can more fully engage with it ahead of time. I will also open up the sanctuary at 6:30 for some quiet contemplation time. Please keep in mind that none of this is a requirement for attending. You are welcome no matter how you choose to engage!

I look at the church calendar year as a spiritual journey that we take together. When we each take the time to deepen our own reflecting, we deepen the experience not just for ourselves, but for each other. Indeed, we belong to one another in the sense that our lives are inextricably intertwined.