Less is More

Spiritual wisdom often directs us to do things differently.  Differently than dominant culture, which tells us to work harder, longer, more seriously.  By nature, I am extraordinarily willful–it has taken me time and heartbreak to realize that willpower isn’t always the most effective route to achieving a goal.  Often times, taking a big deep breath, maybe even SEVERAL breaths, and asking myself “what is really needed here? What is essential? What is my appropriate role and what do I need to let go of?”    And so much of the time, I have discovered that less is more.

Stray, decaying peach on the orchard floor...beauty in odd places

Stray, decaying peach on the orchard floor…beauty in odd places

A member asked me what I had learned after one year of being with you all.  And I said “that you all DO A LOT.”  Given the size of our congregation, we DO more than congregations with more members.  You paint more buildings, you run more religious education classes for children, you feed more people, you raise more money, you do more weeding.  But all these doings isn’t what makes UUFSC such an inspiring religious community–it’s the deep care the drives this doing.  We don’t just do for doings sake– we do because we care.   No matter what our activity is, let us not forget that it is this community’s fierce ethic of care that makes us who are.  If the doing starts feeling overwhelming– take a deep breath, think about how this community cares, ask what is essential, and remember, sometimes less is more.

This Sunday, Matthew Mason leads worship with Guest Speaker Mark Haskett from Stanislaus County Interfaith Council:

Playing With (Religious) Words.  Bringing clarity to our communications is crucial… in personal and social relations, in legal contracts and nuclear arms deals… and especially in religion, where scriptural passages and words are parsed and interpreted as if our salvation depended on it.  Author of Boldly Going on Your Inner Voyage – as well as current chair of the Stanislaus County Interfaith Council and long-time friend of the UU Fellowship – Mark Haskett suggests we “lighten up” a bit. Instead of being so serious about religious language, what can we learn by being a little more, well… playful with it?


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