“Seneca Falls, Selma, Stonewall”: Claiming Our Social Justice Story

Zinn

Monday, January 21, 2013 was a High Holy Day in our nation’s "civil religion.” The second inauguration for our country’s first black president was itself highly symbolic, but that day in January had the additional symbolism of being both Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, and the anniversary month of Lincoln signing the Emancipation Proclamation. What a stunning three-step sweep of history from President Lincoln’s 1863 executive order freeing all slaves, one hundred year later to Dr. King’s 1963 dr … [Read more...]

“Help, Thanks, Wow,” Part 3 of 3

Lamott

This post is the third and final part in a series of three posts inspired by Anne Lamott's book Help, Thanks, Wow Ann Lamott’s initial claim was that, “Here are the two best prayers I know: ‘Help me, help me, help me,’ and ‘Thank you, thank you, thank you.’” But more than a decade later, she wisely added a third essential prayer: “Wow.” And cultivating a prayerful sense of awe at the stunning beauty of the universe is another spiritual practice about which many religious progressives can agree. … [Read more...]

“Help, Thanks, Wow,” Part 2 of 3

Lamott

This post is the second in a series of three posts inspired by Anne Lamott's book Help, Thanks, Wow The second of Lamott’s “three essential prayers” is thanks. Religious progressives find ourselves on more universally safe ground here on the value of expressing gratitude. As the 13th-century mystic Meister Eckhart said, “If the only prayer you say in your entire life is ‘Thank You,’ that would suffice.” And choosing to emphasize the positive and focus on the good parts of your life can be transf … [Read more...]

“Help, Thanks, Wow,” Part 1 of 3

Lamott

This post is the first in a series of three posts inspired by Anne Lamott's book Help, Thanks, Wow Anne Lamott is a social justice activist and bestselling author, known for her autobiographical books. I first encountered her through a book she published more than a decade ago titled Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith, which helped establish her reputation as a provocative and hilarious writer on spirituality. From that book, one of the lines that resonated most with me was her c … [Read more...]

Why Jung Threw the Yijing (or I Ching) and Why Might You?

Yijing

This year the Chinese New Year will begin on what we call January 31st on our Gregorian (or “Western”) calendar. And when I was considering a good date to explore both the history and potential contemporary meaning of the I Ching, one of China’s contributions to the classics of world religious literature, a time close to the Chinese New Year seemed auspicious. And when considering criteria such as “longevity, domestic significance, and global spread,” scholars rank the I Ching in the same league … [Read more...]

Protesting as Prayer & Life as a Work of Art: Rabbi Abraham Joshua Heschel

Heschel

The Second of Unitarian Universalism's Six Sources is “Words and deeds of prophetic women and men which challenge us to confront powers and structures of evil with justice, compassion, and the transforming power of love.” In that spirit, I want to share some stories about Rabbi Abraham Joshua Heschel (1907-1972).Rabbi Heschel was one of the great prophetic figures of the twentieth-century. To many observers, it was as if one of the biblical prophets had been reborn in our own day. Instead of … [Read more...]


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