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Taking It Home, Workshop 4: Blow In the Wind, Rise In The Sea: Nature And Spirit

In "Spirit of Life," a Tapestry of Faith program

We covenant to affirm and promote... Respect for the interdependent web of all existence of which we are a part.

The living tradition we share draws from... Spiritual teaching of Earth-centered traditions which celebrate the sacred circle of life and instruct us to live in harmony with the rhythms of nature... — Principles of the Unitarian Universalist Association

Visiting wild places, beaches, or parks, or taking time to observe a rainstorm, can provide opportunities to engage in more experiences of spirituality and the natural world. For further insight, write in your journal a description of the weather, a seashell, or a blossom, looking for wonder and mystery.

Talk with friends, family members, housemates, and co-workers about recycling, reducing energy use, reducing consumption, supporting "green" legislation, and other things you can do together that will have a positive impact on the environment.

Try a form of spiritual practice that involves bringing attentive awareness to whatever is right before us, and showing gratitude for it. Try bringing a mindful attention to sitting or walking outside, or looking out a window. Notice details, and address what you see with gratitude and respect. For example, say "Dear rock showing off in the sunlight, thank you." "Dear shining green, green leaves, thank you." "Dear tall grasses moving gently in the wind, thank you." "Dear people rushing by on the streets, thank you." "Dear pigeons, dear garbage, dear park bench, thank you." Intentional practice of awareness and gratitude can increase feelings of inner peace and connection with one's surroundings. Such a practice can help us let go of the past and our concerns for what has been, while we embrace the present moment and its possibilities.

Consider bringing mindful eating into your every day practice, including both how you enjoy food as you are eating and how you choose food with regard to its impact on the interdependent web.

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Last updated on Thursday, October 27, 2011.

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