By Linda Sherry
Based on Soul Matters Materials
Relationships are not just about people. We have relationship with many aspects of our lives. While this month’s theme primarily focuses on connections with people, might I suggest we also consider our relationships to what nourishes us, and what stresses us, and how we cultivate the garden that is our lives.
As the seasons change, we cultivate the soil; we choose what to plant we carefully feed and water; we delight in the first sight of a new green sprout; we cull the garden to allow space for healthy growth; we pull weeds; we relish the flowers that delight; and eagerly enjoy the fruits of each. Each season of our life is a little different.
What do you want and need in your garden at this time of your life?
ABOUT RELATIONSHIPS WITH PEOPLE
The precious people in our lives know we love, appreciate and adore them, but there’s something about giving voice to the reasons for our love that makes that love tangible. When we identify the specific ways our lives are enriched by another, saying it out loud breathes life Into our connections.
What relationship in your life needs to be restored? What connection have you ignored for too long?
Is it time to stop cultivating a relationship and instead walk away from it?
ABOUT RELATIONSHIPS AND THE COVID PANDEMIC
- How has the Covid-19 pandemic affected your relationships? Have you had more time or inclination to think about them?
- Have you experienced unexpected closeness with anyone?
- When you’ve felt lonely or isolated, who have you yearned for most?
- What was the most nourishing new relationship you cultivated during the pandemic time? Was it with an unexpected person? A new habit? A new part of yourself? And what’s your plan to intentionally nourish that relationship moving forward?
ABOUT RELATIONSHIP WITH OUR BELOVED COMMUNITY
Building community is to the collective as spiritual practice is to the individual. Grace Lee Boggs
We are like aspen trees – who have mistakenly thought that since we look like many trees that we are separate beings – but under the ground, our root system is one – we are fully alive when we are connected because we are, we were always, part of one another. Rev. Hilary Krivchenia
What do we live for if it is not to make life less difficult for each other? George Eliot
ABOUT CONFLICT IN RELATIONSHIP
How Do You NOT Cultivate Relationship? It’s counterintuitive but true: arguing well can strengthen relationships unlike almost anything else. Those skilled at navigating the tense waters of a fight know that it’s not the fight itself but the way one fights that tears the threads of relationship. To have had a fight with someone that “fights fair” is to know that you can trust them when things get rough again. It leaves one clear that what matters most to the other is not winning but the relationship itself. Here’s the good news: we can all get better at arguing well, at fighting fairly! And a great place to start is with recognizing the ways in which you don’t fight fairly.
Each month WUUC embraces a theme that we carry into our Worship, some of our small groups, and hopefully into our quiet conversations and personal reflections. These themes are offered and supported by the UUA’s Soul Matters program.
Find the Soul Matters packet for October here: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1l0k_5gd9BBBXLfbk509PZnBWSlOp9bQE/view?usp=sharing