This comes from Tony Mcneile, a retired Unitarian minister who lives in Bolton, UK. He has been active for many years in the Unitarian Earth Spirit Network, which is CUUPS’ sister organization for Unitarians and Unitarian Universalists who live in the British Isles.
The earth is my sacred home. I feel blessed by it. In my life I have seen the most beautiful parts of it. I have sailed on its oceans, through peaceful calms and Atlantic storms. My ship sailed into the rivers and creeks of Nigeria, how rich the colours and how vibrant the sounds.
I had a madness for mountains. You cannot forget the sight of the sun rising over an ice wall as you labour through the alpine dawn. Crimson and gold and snow and silence.
And working round an isolated oil well far into the Sahara desert of Libya. Stillness there too and nothing but sand and the dunes rolling away before you. And you crunch sea shells beneath your boot because once this was the floor of the sea. Three thousand feet below is the oil coming up from yet another age of forests and all kinds of sauropods. The pipe at the surface too hot for the hand to touch.
And I have been a soldier, a parachutist. To leap out of the clattering noise of the aeroplane into starlit night and stillness again and floating down for precious moments before pandemonium.
And I love the woods and fields of home and ancient places.
You cannot tell me there is no God. Not my bible God but another one, a spirit God, of Gaia, the earth. Many a time I have walked with my God. Sometimes with elation, my heart singing and toneless words coming out of my mouth.
And sometimes I walk with shame, seeing what we have done to my earth, my Gaia.
I want to celebrate its goodness and celebrate its seasons, because it such a wonderful place. This earth a speck of wonder in a vast universe giving life and love to each one of us.
It carried me heart and soul into this Unitarian family, and this earth spirit network.
-Guest Post by Tony McNeile