Interdependent Web: Something new came, a fumbler’s journey, nice is not enough

Interdependent Web: Something new came, a fumbler’s journey, nice is not enough

A weekly roundup of blogs and other user-generated web content about Unitarian Universalism


Something new came

In the Rev. Erica Baron’s winter solstice tale, gentle darkness emerges in the space created when brash light withdraws, sulking about not being properly appreciated.

The light gathered in the farthest reaches of its lightself. Gathered in and in all of the light, gathered in tighter and tighter and smaller and smaller, curling into a ball and curled in on all that anger and sadness.

Into the space left by the light, someone new came. Not the light, not the world the light had made. Something really new – something that did not come from the light. Something different and distinct. Into the space left by the light, darkness came. (Nature’s Sacred Journey, 11.30.18)

The fumbler’s journey

The Rev. Dr. Emily Brault is tired of trying to be a hero.

I wish we had a different journey to strive for, like the fumbler’s journey. Or the mediocre maze. Or how about a dance - you know, the one where you’re so absorbed by the music that your awkward, offbeat moves don’t even matter anymore, you just need to go with the sounds of the life within you and nothing else matters. I wanna dance like that. No beginning, no ending, just a music that connects me to the rhythm of life itself. It’d be a pretty boring movie, though. (Facebook, 12.3.18)

The Rev. Theresa Novak “gained weight slowly over the years, and in some ways relished being fat.”

I did not enjoy squeezing myself into airplane seats, or enduring the indignities and judgments that society places upon fat people, but I loved myself and my body, just as it was. . . .

But I forgot that my body needed my care and attention, and that just as my heart, brain, and spirit needed exercise to stay healthy, so did my body. I forgot that this faith demands a wholeness of mind, spirit, and body. I forgot these words of the 16th century Unitarian, Michael Servetus: “It is necessary to care for the body if we wish the spirit to function normally.” (Sermons, Poetry and Other Musings, 12.3.18)

Liz James celebrates that she has become someone who “has hustle.”

This is a little miracle to me. That you can decide you want to be a certain kind of person, and then you act like that kind of person, and then you become that kind of person. . . .

We are people, not sculptures of people. (Facebook, 12.5.18)

Why so busy?

The Rev. Catharine Clarenbach asks herself, “Why so rushed?”

What if, instead of working more and harder, I took the time to write in my journal? What if, instead of being so pleased with my work, my accomplishments, I allowed myself time just to stare out at the beautiful, steel-gray sky and the rain on the wisteria? What if, instead of giving myself a totally arbitrary sense of urgency, I allowed myself some rest? (The Way of the River, 11.30.18)

Sara Lewis shares her notes and takeaways from a recent training for busy social service providers.

For many of us, it is intolerable to bear witness to suffering, so we rush into Doing mode because Being feels unbearable. The world is in need of people who can be present, who can work to cause no harm—and then you’ll be able to help others and/or the world.

. . . . I’m challenging myself to work on being present more. To not distract myself, numb myself, or any of the other ways I avoid being present with all this pain—and one of the biggest ways I avoid being present with pain is by being very very busy and working very very hard. (My Purple House, 12.5.18)

Nice is not enough

The Rev. David Breeden reviews an essay about “The Christology of Niceness.”

Consider this: In those grand European cathedrals, Jesus is a monarch. Truly a “lord” of the old European type. He’s awe-inspiring, just like those big buildings that took generations to build.

But on American soil in the late nineteenth century, in middle class denominations such as the Congregationalists, Episcopalians, Universalists, Unitarians, Presbyterians, and Lutherans, there began to be this nice Jesus. (Medium, 12.6.18)

Thinking of those who died from AIDS during the presidency of George H. W. Bush, the Rev. Myke Johnson asks, “If our loved ones wait for us in heaven, are we also greeted by those we have harmed?”

In the infinity which is eternity, before [Bush] can celebrate with Barbara and Robin, he must sit down with each person who died of AIDS under his watch. He must listen to their stories, get to know who they were: what they loved, what they missed out on, whether they were cared for in the end, or abandoned by family or friends. He must listen to each of those heart-breaking human stories, with no barriers, and let his heart break open. And then, in that place beyond any time, all are gathered into the Everlasting Arms. (Finding Our Way Home, 12.2.18)