Writing as Spiritual Practice
Myrna Adams West facilitates “Writing as Spiritual Practice” first Sundays at 9:15 am in the Kleiner Heritage Room (aka Sofa/Couch Room) in the Founders Wing behind the sanctuary. This group offers an opportunity to explore spiritual expression through various genres.
Rev. Alison said in her sermon “Going Beyond, Going Within,” and I’m paraphrasing here, spiritual practice takes one outside of self or within self. It transcends the everyday attempts to put into words that which cannot be named or spoken. It is communication–pick one or more or make up your own word–with God or self or nature or the universe. When we engage in spiritual practice, we go beyond self-interest and give self away.
Overarching Theme for 2019-2020 Program Year: Fulfilling the Promise . . .
Each Sunday the topic for the worship services will relate to that month’s theme, not as a series, but just another angle on a subject to deepen the exploration of that particular theme. The suggested prompts for Writing as Spiritual Practice assignments will follow the monthly worship themes.
Gathering time: 9:15 am. Next gathering: September 1 in the Kleiner Heritage Room (Sofa/Couch Room) behind the sanctuary.
Before attending the session, choose one or more of the following prompts to write about or make up your own assignment:
The theme for September 1 is “Fulfilling the Promise through Belonging (Community, Promises).”
- What does it mean to say that you belong? Explain.
- Make two lists. At the top of one, write: “Places I Belong.” At the top of the other write: “Places I Do Not Belong.” Then fill in your lists. Are there rules, covenants, behaviors, or habits that are expected of those who belong in those places? What are they? For inspiration, read Meg Barnhouse’s essay, “Laundromat Outlaw.” You may email Myrna for a copy.
- Choose a place where you felt that you didn’t belong. What caused you to feel that way? Describe how you felt when you realized you did not belong in that place?
- Choose a place where you felt that you did belong. What caused you to feel that way? Describe how you felt when you realized you did belong there.
- Is feeling that you “belong” the same as feeling that you are “welcome” in that place? Explain.
- Many people say when they find a Unitarian Universalist congregation that they finally have found their community or tribe or people. Has that been your experience with UUFA or some other UU or religious community? Why or why not?
- Many communities, religious and otherwise, have a covenant for how the community will be together. Here is UUFA’s current covenant:
We covenant to: Commit time, talent and treasure to promote positive change in ourselves and in the world; Care for each other through deep listening and genuine kindness while assuming good will; Create a safe environment by respecting and trusting one another; Encourage each other to express our authentic selves, supporting, inspiring, and challenging each other’s quest for truth, meaning and spiritual growth; Nurture a diverse and welcoming congregation.
This covenant was adopted in 2013. How would you change it?
- Starhawk’s reading, which is a repeat from last month (so good!) describes what belonging might feel like for her. Describe where you belong. You may wish to email Myrna for a copy of the reading.
For more information or for copies of inspirational pieces for this assignment, contact Myrna.
Please Note: You may participate in the 1st Sunday gatherings even if you have not written anything. When others read their writings, you may be prompted to participate in the discussions or you may just want to sit and listen. You are always welcome.