spirit flows thru -- Alison Rittger's spiritual reflections on finding the holy in the daily
PictureUU Chalice clip art
Posted a few paragraphs below is the Reflection I gave at the First Unitarian Universalist Society worship service Sunday, April 19 with the Reverend Mary Ganz preaching. I liked being on the chancel and part of the service. Even before the flute soloist tootled the prelude, I felt useful. Rev. Ganz needed a platform at the pulpit because she is short. I helped that happen. When the Reverend mentioned having allergies, I had the  lilies close to minister's chair taken away. I was so into caring for her, I would have turned the pages of her sermon except she could do it herself and it would be inappropriate. Admittedly, the best part of the service, besides the sermon itself, were those moments behind the lectern when standing on tiptoe to ease my nervousness, I shared approximately 387 words. 

For a while, the ministers did not want worship associates personal on the chancel; I was disappointed, felt shut out and felt compelled to craft a website to post my experiences. I needed to feel connected through stories to myself and to others. At last, First UU worship services again want lay people to tell their stories as worship associates; we're listed in the order of service as "Reflections."  Again I'm on the chancel and grateful for the chance to share insights.  I also appreciate this spot in cyberspace. Thank you if you are a reader.
Reflection: When I started to blog at Spiritflowsthru.com in October of 2011, I thought to write about living each day and being “actively engaged in finding meaning in the menial.” And I invited readers to join me in the “search for the holy in the daily.”

But it’s 2015 and I’ve changed what I’m looking for. No doubt sitting in stillness has influenced me to see the daily as the holy, and to look instead for ways to repay daily life for its abundance by contributing the energy of my true presence. Perhaps this way I could uncover a certain poverty of awareness on my part. Curious about my daily impact, I paid attention to leaving a room mindfully and not letting the door slam after me. I tried to note when I was truly present with those who spoke to me. Did I talk more than I listened? I wanted to be mindful of my ego when in the grip of “What about me?” because it is curiosity I want at the forefront asking, “Who are you?” “What is this?”

Daily, we learn of injustices we can’t remedy, so it is skillful to ask what good it can do to shift one’s perspective in the face of so much suffering and delusion?” I found answers to that question in Thich Nhat Hanh’s “Five Wonderful Precepts.” In the fourth precept are these guidelines and a beneficial outcome of wise speech.

“Knowing that words can create happiness or suffering, I vow to learn to speak truthfully, with words that inspire self-confidence, joy, and hope. I am determined not to spread news that I do not know to be certain and not to criticize or condemn things of which I am not sure. I will refrain from uttering words that can cause division or discord, or that can cause the family or the community to break. I will make all efforts to reconcile and resolve all conflicts, however small.”

Influenced by such a precept, I vow to continue to look at daily life as sacred-ground, to measure the wealth and poverty of experience by how close to keeping my vows of nonharming I can come, and when I post my blogs, may spirit flow thru. 

End of Reflection and final thought: May we remember to bring the gift of full presence to all the moments of each day. 



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