Looking for spiritual community? Are you passionate about peace and justice, sustainability, and religious freedom? Come visit! We welcome you!
The Oberlin UU Fellowship is a welcoming, caring community that promotes religious freedom, encourages spiritual and personal growth, and works for a peaceful, just, and sustainable world.
Our congregation is a living, breathing group of spiritually alive individuals who are in love with life and dedicated to pursuing our individual quests for truth, while working for social justice and environmental responsibility.
Living from your beautiful heart in tough times.
As we enter a new era politically, that threatens/promises to reshape personal and community life, in my meditation and my journaling, I’m wondering:
- How to be open in heart and mind,
- How to be present with kindness
- How to show up for collective reflection and action
Many of you have shared with me your need to turn off the news. Yet you also feel compelled to stay informed. You ask, “Am I copping out?” No. You are being responsible. Media runs on the 3 C’s: Conflict, Contradiction, Controversy. News needs a neurological response from us (so we keep tuning in), a squirt of the stress hormone, cortisol. It leaves us feeling on high alert. When we overdo the 3 Cs, we go into ‘amygdala hijack,’ where everything and everyone looks like a threat; it’s hard to recover the sense of safety and well-being necessary for an open mind and caring heart.
This new political reality is not a personal attack. Yet it affects us all personally. To show up with creative minds and compassionate hearts, we have to become very skillful. Martin Luther King, Jr. and Gandhi both wrote that courage doesn’t require conquering fear, but cultivating the capacity to be present in your heart even when you’re afraid.
How do we do that? One way comes from mindfulness meditation: Because positive emotion (e.g., joy, kindness, gratitude) strengthens us, we first pay attention to the positive. We imagine gathering into one hand a positive feeling, intention or memory (e.g., our love for our country, compassion toward someone, yearning to speak truth to power). We imagine holding it as we breathe with gratitude. We allow the gratitude to strengthen every cell in our body. When we feel strong, we breathe into a negative feeling or thought we’re holding in our body (e.g., fear, sorrow, anger, inadequacy, blame); we imagine gathering it in the other hand. Then, breathing with compassion for our own suffering, we go back and forth, bringing awareness and breath, until the positive can hold the negative with kindness.
Social justice is the shared spiritual/ethical practice of Unitarian Universalism. To engage for the long-haul, we need to stay in our hearts, in the midst of fear or anger. Many paths take us there: art, movement, gardening, walking in nature, meditation, etc. We each must take good care of ourselves. We are not alone. We hold meditation at the Fellowship every week. Please join us.
Our UU vision of civil rights is shared by the majority of Americans: in support of public education, equal rights for women and minorities, equal economic opportunity, responding to climate change. We draw on hundreds of years of courageous struggle for the dream of democracy. It’s in our bones. It’s who we are and can become if we take good care of ourselves.
May our congregation support you in living from your beautiful heart and shining mind, making a difference in our collective needs and dreams.
We Welcome Mattis Deutch, our new Office Administrator!
POST-ELECTION - Would you like a safe, community space to debrief the election and share a meal? Please, no political ranting. Just an opportunity to listen to each other reflect on the issues and needs emerging for our democracy. Join us on Sundays at OUUF!