Friday, October 30, 2020

In these challenging times, find what anchors, helps comfort you


Rev. Nica Eaton-Guinn, Special to Ventura County Star
Published 11:00 a.m. PT Sept. 26, 2020

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Two weeks ago, I felt a strong inner call to start a new weekly virtual group at my congregation, Chalice Unitarian Universalist Fellowship. It’s called “Spiritual Sustenance” for these times.

As we approach the election, deal with fires statewide, not to mention the ongoing complexities of COVID-19, I believe most of us could use some extra spiritual sustenance. Each Thursday, I offer a half hour get together from 6 – 6:30 p.m., focusing on different spiritual practices.

More: Interfaith: One way to love one another is to serve one another

Some weeks we meditate together. Other weeks we discuss an inspirational reading or video. Each week we pray and set our vision for a world filled with greater kindness, peace, equality and love.

Even those who don’t identify with the word prayer join us for positive intention setting. We draw from spiritual wisdom across all faith traditions and find inspiration in poetry, psychology, the arts and each other.

To keep our center during these challenging times, I recommend we find wisdom that truly anchors us. I spoke about this recently in a service called “Strategies for the Long Haul.”

What sustains you, anchors your life and helps you feel comforted, which you can turn to again and again?

A friend told me recently that when boats on the ocean drop two anchors, rather than just one, it’s likely that a storm is coming. They want to be doubly sure they are able to survive the choppy waters, the wild seas, the raging wind and rain. They want to be prepared for difficulties.

We may be facing more intense storms ahead, so we need to put down at least two spiritual anchors to help us ride the waves. What comforts you when nothing else can? What soothes your disquieted mind, your aching heart or your weary soul? What two anchors can you drop down deep during difficult times to ensure you are steady in a storm?

More: Interfaith: Buddhism’s practical approach to fake news

Spiritual anchors may take the form of sacred writings, scripture, stories, poetry or even music. They may be your connection to the God of your understanding, Spirit or Source, or if you’re an atheist, your ability to hear your inner voice, your higher intuition.

It may be grounding in your body and breath. It may be a meditation, journaling or yoga practice. It may be your connections to animals or nature. What is it for you?

In Unitarian Universalism we worship the sacredness of life in all its forms. We value and welcome every human being of good will exactly as they are. We celebrate and honor a diversity of beliefs and theologies, while respecting the inherent worth and dignity of all, never forgetting our interconnectedness.

We draw from all world religions, philosophies, psychologies and the arts, to inspire us to be wiser, more compassionate and loving human beings. We accompany you as you find your own answers to the big questions of life.

No matter who you are, the color of skin, what your spiritual beliefs are, or your physical abilities, who you love, or the gender pronouns you use, we honor and welcome you.

Chalice Unitarian Universalist Fellowship is gathering virtually for meditations, small support groups, as well as men’s, women’s and family circles. Sundays at 10 a.m., our online worship is helping many feel less alone, enjoy music together and find joy in community.

Chalice continues working online to advocate for racial and economic equality, as well as climate justice. Being part of a community that aims to practice love in action serving the wider world is especially important at this time – a community that helps us access our best selves and connect with what we each find sacred in life.

Join us any time at Chalice! We’d love to see you.

The Rev. Nica Eaton-Guinn is the minister at Chalice, which recently changed from Conejo Valley UU Fellowship. She is a regular participant in the Conejo Valley Interfaith Association, which meets monthly and welcomes clergy and representatives of all religious faiths. She can be contacted at minister@chaliceuu.org.

Read or Share this story: https://www.vcstar.com/story/news/2020/09/26/interfaith-these-challenging-times-find-what-anchors-helps-comfort-you/3536835001/



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