What Does It Mean To Be A People of….BECOMING?
In the month of April we are exploring what it means to be a people of becoming. A people who know where we have been and are open to the journey ahead of growth and transformation. Soul Matters describes the practice of becoming as discovering what inside of us longs to be born, and of no longer hiding. Come practice and learn with us as we deepen our faith!
Reflections on Becoming:
Now I become myself. It’s taken
Time, many years and places;
I have been dissolved and shaken,
Worn other people’s faces…
Real isn’t how you are made,” said the Skin Horse. “It’s a thing that happens to you. When a child loves you for a long, long time, not just to play with, but REALLY loves you, then you become Real… It doesn’t happen all at once. You become. It takes a long time.
Margery Williams Bianco, The Velveteen Rabbit
We evolve in the midst of narratives meant only for some
and ways of being made narrow by fear and power.
We must, then, have the courage to listen to the truth of our own lives,
to the wisdom that comes from within…
This lifelong labor cannot be carried out alone. It requires help
from friends, and lovers, family, and creaturely companions
who bear witness to what makes us come alive.
And say to us, “Listen. Look. Feel. Pay attention to that.”
This is loving and being loved.
The practice of discovering that inside you which wants to be born.
The practice of no longer hiding.
The practice of continual growth.
What Inhibits Our Becoming
With her Pulitzer Prize-winning book, The Warmth of Other Suns, Isabel Wilkerson established herself as a shimmering voice and trusted guide as America reckons with its racist history and struggles to become a country on a new path. Her newest book, Caste: The Origins of Our Discontents, continues to uncover the unacknowledged and insidious structures that divide us and prevent the full becoming of all our citizens.
So as your exercise this month, allow Wilkerson’s new work to take you into a deeper understanding of the challenge ahead of all of us. America will never be a “land of true becoming” as long as the undertow of caste remains in place.
Here’s her book and other avenues for exploration:
Caste: The Origens of Our Discontents
- ● NY Times Review
- ● PBS Interview: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Nz0HYnQWMwQ
- ● Interview with Trevor Noah: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7m49DT8pPe0
- ● Discussion with Bryan Stevenson: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bP0m0jKORwg
Taking It Home: Ideas for All Ages
The Wheel of Kindness – Letting In Radical Kindness
One of the sources of our UU faith is “Jewish and Christian teachings which call us to respond to God’s love by loving our neighbors as ourselves.” UUs have long welcomed this as a call to kindness. This is another way to honor Easter. Yes, Easter is about the miracle of Jesus overcoming death and coming back to life. But we also honor Jesus’ life by remembering the many ways he offered kindness and love to those who society treated as unwanted and unlovable. In this spirit, dive into the “Wheel of Kindness.” game below and do the actions.
Practice Radical Acts of Kindness—Wheel of Kindness: https://wheelofnames.com/pkv-v72
Then, try out some more acts of kindness, especially suggested for these COVID days. Which of the following ideas for radical acts of kindness do you want to do? Why?
- Call your grandparents.
- Add encouraging messages to your sidewalks using chalk.
- FaceTime a friend from school that you don’t talk to often to say hello.
- Write a note to a parent to let them know they are doing a good job being your parent.
- Make your parents breakfast, lunch, or dinner.
- Don’t fight with your siblings.
- Color pictures for people you love and then put them in the mail.
- Leave a note and a small gift for delivery drivers.
- Write a letter or make a card for a relative.
- Do your chores without being asked and without complaining.
- Pick weeds from your flower beds and gardens.
- Tell each of your family members one thing you love about them.
- Give a parent a big hug out of the blue.
- Host a virtual game night with friends.
- When walking down the street, wish each person you see – “be happy, be well.”
We create two different playlists for each of our monthly themes: one in Spotify and another in YouTube. We organize these lists as a journey of sorts. So consider listening from beginning to end and using the lists as musical meditations. Follow the links below to connect with this month’s “Becoming songs.” And we have TWO PLAYLISTS for you this month, one on the general journey of becoming and another celebrating the journey of becoming your true self!
Click here for the Spotify playlist on Becoming.
Click here for the Spotify playlist on Becoming Our True Selves.
Click here for the YouTube playlist on Becoming.
Click here for the YouTube playlist on Becoming Our True Selves.