Be here now.

— Ram Dass (Richard Alpert)

IN TODAY'S SESSION... The children explored the intangible gift of ourselves. They heard a story, "Maya's Questions," in which a young girl learns to be herself, to pay attention to what is going on around her, and to be kind. When we are present and attentive and our true selves, we are best able to respond to others authentically and kindly. Children learned the phrase, "Be here now" as a short way to remember what Maya learned.

EXPLORE THE TOPIC TOGETHER. Talk about... It is easy for adults as well as children to become distracted, to lose their sense of grounding, to be in a rush and not pay attention to what is going on around them. Talk about the situations and places where each member of the family feels most calm, most themselves, most able to pay attention to their environment and the people in it. Talk about situations where it is hard to simply "be here now."

FAMILY DISCOVERY

Try being present together by meditating as a family. Even young children can sit still for about a minute. Gather the family and have everyone agree to sit in silence for at least one minute. If you have meditation chimes, use them to begin and end the meditation. You may wish to use the phrase, "be here now" as a silent mantra. As your family increases its experience with sitting quietly, you may try increasing the time spent in meditation.

Mealtime is a different opportunity to be attentive and present with each other. Think about how family members can "be here now" at meals.

For more information contact religiouseducation@uua.org.