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Alternate Activity 1: Embodying Roots and Wings

Activity time: 10 minutes

Preparation for Activity

  • Arrange the room so that there is open space for participants to move around freely.

Description of Activity

In this activity, participants use their bodies to reflect on and represent roots and wings.

Invite participants to stand as they are able, or to stay in their seat. Slowly read the following script to lead the group through an embodied meditation:

As we begin, please close your eyes. Take three deep breaths--in... and out, in... and out, in... and out. Raise your arms and stretch upwards to the sky. Reach down to touch the floor with the palms of your hands and your fingers. Slowly roll back to an upright position.

Now, feel your feet firmly planted on the ground. Notice how the ground holds you up as you push against it with your body's weight. Imagine that your feet are actually rooted in the ground. Your body is nourished by the web of roots connecting you to the ground. Pretend that your body is part of that web of roots. Move or position your body as if you are a root, and imagine you are part of that web of roots... what does it feel like? What is growing out of you? [Pause for 15 seconds] If you would like, please share a word or two aloud about how it feels. [Pause for responses]

Now move from the position of a root to the position of a wing. Move freely... in a new direction of your creation. Repeat that movement three more times, pausing in the wing position. [Pause] What does it take to become a wing? [Pause for 10 seconds]

Reflect on the movement from root to wing. What path did you follow? [Pause for 5 seconds] Imagine you are a wing... what does it feel like? [Pause for 15 seconds] If you would like, please share a word or two aloud about how it feels. [Pause for responses]

Now return to an upright position. When you are ready... slowly open your eyes and return your attention to the room and this group gathered here.

When everyone is back in their seats, lead a short discussion with these reflection questions:

  • What does it take to become a wing?
  • How did this embodied meditation affect your understanding of the roots and wings metaphor?
  • In what ways do you or will you give wings to Unitarian Universalism?

Including All Participants

This activity is especially good for kinesthetic learners--people who learn best by doing and moving. People with limited mobility can participate from their seats.

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For more information contact religiouseducation@uua.org.

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