Activity time: 10 minutes
Materials for Activity
- Copies of Story 1: The Wandering Teacher (one copy for facilitator, plus a several copies for participants who may wish to read along)
- Optional: Microphone
- Optional: Pulpit or lectern
Preparation for Activity
- Review the story in advance so that you can present it effectively.
Description of Activity
Read the story "The Wandering Teacher" aloud. Provide photocopies of the story to people who prefer to read along.
After sharing the story, invite participants to take a moment to quietly center themselves, to let go of any tension or emotions that are not needed for the next hour, and to breathe deeply. You may ring a bell at the beginning and end of this silent time, or simply invite people into the silence and then gently bring them out.
After the silence, invite participants to discuss their responses to the story. Keep the discussion brief and focused, allowing time for your own concluding remarks. Ask:
- What are some of the things that make you feel most alive?
- Is doing those things a spiritual practice? How so, or why not?
- What makes a practice "spiritual" and not just "emotional" or "mental"?
- What does "spiritual" mean to you?
Conclude by explaining that Spirit in Practice, like Unitarian Universalism, affirms many definitions of spirituality. One need not believe in God or a supernatural "spirit" to be spiritual or to have a spiritual practice. In essence, our spirituality is our connection with the Spirit of Life-the energy and force that makes up the ground of our being, the ground of life itself. Spirituality can be felt and accessed by connecting to people, animals, the earth, the universe, tangible things, or intangible energies. Spirit in Practice seeks to help each of us grow in our connections to the sacred, however we define the sacred and however we define ourselves.
Including All Participants
Be sure that all participants can hear the story, or have the story interpreted for them. You may wish to print out a copy of the story in advance for participants who are hard of hearing or who prefer to read along.