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Be aware of wonder. Live a balanced life—learn some and think some and draw and paint and sing and dance and play and work every day some. — Robert Fulghum, author and Unitarian Universalist minister

The interdependent web of existence has evolved over millions of years to include extraordinary diversity of life. The long-term sustainability of each and all depends on balance. In Unitarian Universalism—an ecologically—minded religion—living in balance with all Earth becomes a critical spiritual practice.

This session uses role play to demonstrate how balance can be maintained in a large, interdependent system and suggest the effects of imbalance. The central story, a Nigerian folk tale, shows the consequences of not living in balance with nature and encourages children to consume less and conserve more.


This session will:

  • Introduce the critical role of balance in protecting the interdependent web of life
  • Give concrete opportunities to experience balance and imbalance in an ecosystem
  • Emphasize balance as a spiritual orientation which can guide how we interact with the Earth
  • Empower participants as leaders within the group
  • Reinforce the seventh Unitarian Universalist Principle, "Respect for the interdependent web of all existence of which we are a part."

Learning Objectives

Participants will:

  • Respond to a Nigerian folk tale that introduces the concept of balance in an ecosystem
  • Through role play, explore the importance of balance and actions that help maintain balance
  • Understand ways human actions affect the balance of ecosystems
  • Experience leadership roles in the group.

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