Dear Sanctuary NYC Friends,
Why do we gather?
What does the act of gathering for a sacred purpose mean for you?
This week I would like to suggest that the fact of gathering is at least as important as why we gather. My grandmother and mother- in-law, both met with a group of friends weekly to play bridge. They were both fierce bridge competitors, but the fact of gathering was as important as the game.
That time together was sacrosanct. For three hours every Wednesday afternoon, this group of friends met one another for soul refreshment.
They heard the stories of family triumphs and challenges. They shared delicious food and "bridge snacks". They "loved one another".
Both of these ladies also attended church regularly, and were as committed to that as they were to bridge. And again, when listening to the their higher angels, that time of gathering at their respective churches was important for many reasons. Church for them was a place to entrust the ethical teaching and community oversight of their children to a larger group. It was a time to sing together, and mark life passages, to stop and take in the nature of a Creator force in their lives, to study spiritual truths and texts, to "be still and know".
I don't know that people in this time are connecting in these deep ways. I see more people- including me- recording their presence at almost every gathering rather than just being present in the gathering. As Marshall McLuhan forecast nearly fifty years ago," the medium" has become the message. Is a film of us more real to you than a person standing right in front of us?
This is why I gather in spiritual community: to connect to my deeper self, to share my teaching and preaching and to be a channel for God's love. I also gather to be seen and to see, to re-member who and whose I am, to be present for the subtle messages of G-d's presence in our midst.
I would like to pose the question this week: "When we gather, why do we gather?" And more specifically, why do YOU gather?
I am listening... :)
I very much appreciate your deep reflection and comments during the week.
Bless you for sharing your journey with me,