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2019-05-03

From the Minister, Fri May 3

The 2018-19 UUA Common Read is:

If you haven't read it, I do hope you'll get a copy and give it a look. The more UUs learn about what UUs are doing and how they're doing it, the more engaged and meaningful we can become -- enriching our world and our own lives.

Take Chapter 12, for example.
Deborah Cruz, with Alex Kapitan, "The Journey of Partnering for Justice," pp. 131-148.

This chapter tells how Bellingham Unitarian Fellowship (BUF), a couple hours north of Seattle, Washington, partnered with indigenous groups in area of the Salish Sea (a.k.a. Puget Sound), to fight for protections of territory and fishing-rights against threatened development. Together, they won a significant victory in blocking construction on Lummi land of what would have been the largest coal export facility in North America.

The chapter outlines BUF's extensive planning, program organizing, moblizing of other UU congregations, and development of a service learning program through the UU College of Social Justice. The authors note:
"BUF members have learned that to effectively engage in intersectional justice work with frontline people directly affected by environmental injustice, we have to embrace six key practices: humility, authenticity, listening, cultivating trust, doing our homework, and being in it for the long haul" (p. 138)
The chapter then unpacks how BUF followed these six practices and how important it was that they did.

Give it a look. Let me know what ideas for CUUC come to your mind as you read about this inspiring example.

And check out this resource for developing multicultural collaboration: HERE

For my reflection/summary on previous chapters, click the title:
  1. Jennifer Nordstrom, "Intersectionality, Faith, and Environmental Justice"
  2. Paula Cole Jones, "The Formation of the Environmental Justice Movement"
  3. Sheri Prud'homme, "Ecotheology"
  4. Sofia Betancourt, "Ethical Implications of Environmental Justice"
  5. Adam Robersmith, "Cherishing Our World: Avoiding Despair in Environmental Justice Work"
  6. Peggy Clarke, Matthew McHale, "Becoming Resilient: Community Life for a New Age
  7. Kathleen McTigue, "Drawing on the Deep Waters: Contemplative Practice in Justice-Making
  8. Pamela Sparr, "Transforming Unitarian Universalist Culture: Stepping Out of Our Silos and Selves
  9. Kathleen McTigue, “Learning to Change: Immersion Learning and Climate Justice
  10. Peggy Clarke, "Eating the Earth"
  11. Mel Hoover and Rosed Edington, "Water Unites Us
Yours in faith,
Meredith

Practice of the Week: Find Beauty In keeping with our theme for May, Beauty, consider these thoughts for finding more beauty in your life and developing a beauty habit! "There's so much beauty all around us. But I think that for many people, there is little sense of this. That was certainly true for me before I started deliberately looking for beauty. And then we wonder why life doesn't seem very delightful!"
READ MORE

Your Moment of Zen: Doubt Three essential conditions for Zen practice are: Great Faith, Great Doubt, and Great Determination. This Great Doubt is not intellectual doubt. It is:
"utterly becoming one with our practice to the point that our entire body and mind are like a single mass of inquiry. As long as we think that there is something called 'ourselves' that is practicing, we have not quite achieved great doubt. When we become truly absorbed in our practice, then the practice itself is practicing -- our spiritual energy solidified into an immovable mass of questioning." (Koun Yamada).
What is it? Open your mouth to proffer an answer, and you've lost it.

Case
One evening Woodpecker asked, "The term doubt seems to be used in an unusual way in our practice. How do you understand it?"
Raven said, "What's this?"
Woodpecker asked, "Well, what is it?"
Raven asked, "What is it?"
Verse
Who hears? What is mu?
How is it I speak
Without moving my tongue?
What is the sound of a hand?
What is here?
I ask, not wanting to know,
but to remember I don't.
Case by Robert Aitken; introduction and verse by Meredith Garmon
Raven Index   ☙   Zen Practice at CUUC

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