Welcome to the EarthCare Module on "Love."
Life is precious and miraculous. It is invisible and yet omnipresent, a creative force that courses through each of us and all of nature. As advanced as science is becoming, it cannot explain how life sparks into being. Life just is. Life as a spiritual principle and power goes far beyond physical bodies, certainly far beyond a human body. Unlike a body, the true faculty of life has no finite existence. Spiritual life involves creative expression, growth, extension of love. It is the divine presence expressing through and as us. This divine presence expresses through all beings, all creation. We share this planet with a profound profusion of life.
Unit Focus: As a spiritual power, love goes far beyond feelings, attachments, or individual relationships. Love is a universal harmonizing and unifying principle. As we develop the power of love within ourselves, our sense of oneness expands. The power of love in our world is uncontestable and also so misunderstood. Yet love is the great motivator for action, and the necessary ingredient to bring people of opposing views into a common understanding of interdependence. Spiritually we learn interdependence is the way of love and that which we call God, as Love through us, does not guide one view, one person, one species–separate from all else, anymore than the Sun guides one ray of light to only one atom.
Unit Learning Objectives
By the end of this module learners will be able to:
- Demonstrate understanding of love as a spiritual principle.
- Identify links between love as spiritual principle and the awe, connection to, and concern for nature in ways that can benefit Unity teachings.
- Integrate the spiritual principle of love and Earth care into Unity services and teachings.
I open to embodying and expressing the full power of love for healing of myself, my fellow humans and all of creation.
Christ awareness reveals the divine power of Love as me. Divine Love is at work as the harmonizing power through me. I am led by Divine Love in all that is mine to be and do in relationship with the earth, water, air, and all living creatures and things. I affirm the power of love to live harmoniously with all and for all. “And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.” 1Cor13:13
There is much talk about saving the planet. Human talk. Important talk. And we who talk have the capacity to listen. When we listen carefully to each other we may hear a common view: the planet will continue; humans may not. It may be more accurate therefore to say that humans need saving. Saving from what? I propose that we are to be saved from human views and beliefs which have been emphasized by religious teachings that minimize and devalue our relationship with the earth and each other while maximizing short sighted human-centric needs.
What motivates us to live from the interbeing and interconnectedness of all life? Pierre Tier de Chardin and many others have lived and taught that an experience of awe compels us to care, and that the universe in all its beauty consistently returns us to the state of awe. Linda Hogan, Award-winning Chickasaw poet and novelist, speaks to this in her book Dwellings, "We want to live as if there is no other place, as if we will always be here. We want to live with devotion to the world of waters and the universe of life." She also has written that as humans, “We are the embodiment of a paradox; we are the wounders and we are the healers.” What heals? What saves? People across the planet have come to learn that it is power greater than self that restores, heals, and saves us from our own selves. It may be our greatest power to heal and save is the love that is born from awe.
The power of love in our world is uncontestable and also so misunderstood. Yet love is the great motivator for action, and the necessary ingredient to bring people of opposing views into a common understanding of interdependence. Spiritually we learn interdependence is the way of love and that which we call God, as Love through us, does not guide one view, one person, one species–separate from all else, anymore than the Sun guides one ray of light to only one atom.
Now that we humans have come to the end of industrialization as the only answer to providing food, homes, and jobs for civilizations, the technological age has connected people across the planet helping us move effective new ideas swiftly into action to address our most urgent needs. Simultaneously satellites helped us see our collective human capacity to quickly decrease the effects of our pollution during the pandemic lock-downs. Throughout our new era we are experiencing a rapid succession of ideas that advance our understanding of the Power of Love to address problems small and large through our interdependence.
Each person motivated and guided by the harmonizing power of Love will work within the great body of the universe as an integral companion with water, earth, air and creatures, star, moon, and suns. Day by day we can experience through mindfulness the beauty and awe of the natural world. From this awe and love we can contemplate: Where do I start today? We can ask, seek, and knock spiritually: What is the next loving thing that is mine to do? As we make decisions for food, clothing, household items, guided by the harmonizing power of Divine Love, we save ourselves from a belief in separation from our greater good, for all. ~ Rev. Kathy Harwood Long
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Content by Rev. Cylvia Hayes
Click here to access the MicroLearning
Content by Rev. Eliasa Sabogal
Thanks to conservation efforts and Nature’s resiliency after an 18-year absence, endangered salmon have returned to a California Bay Area stream! Coho salmon had not been spotted in the Montezuma Creek since 2004 until this year.
Love Thy Nature. Filmmaker Sylvie Rokab. Narrated by Liam Neeson | https://lovethynature.com
“This film reveals how a renewed connection with nature can ignite a sense of meaning and wonder so profound that it touches us at the very core of what it means to be human.”
David Attenborough- He has made numerous films of the beauty and wonders of the natural world all over the globe, including stunning photos found nowhere else. Any of his films that are available through BBC Films generally have no screening fees for non-profits.
Books & Publications
Devotions; the Selected Poems of Mary Oliver. Oliver, Mary. Penguin, 2017.
Mary Oliver’s poetry celebrates the wonders of nature and her lifelong love of the natural world is expressed in numerous poems.
Compassionate Universe, Eknath Eswaren (Seven Week Series for ministries/spirit groups–permitted)
Finding Beauty in a Broken World, by Terry Tempest Williams.
“Nature is held together by the energy of love.” - Deepak Chopra