I spent the first half of this week leading a retreat in which the participants learned about and tried their hand at creating spiritual autobiographies. “Spiritual,” defined most broadly, has to do with what animates us — literally gives us breath — what is meaningful in our lives.
Many of the people who came to the retreat had already been friends, some for over thirty years. They knew one another’s lives. And yet in our time with one another, they shared things they had never revealed before. We created a loving community together, one in which all perspectives were welcomed, all experiences cherished.
I believe we humans are hard-wired to be tellers of tales and receivers of one another’s stories. Wisdom is passed along, knowledge is shared, and expectations are tested in this intimate exchange. Beyond that, we create community, often across the usual barriers that separate us into factions.
I am musing about this. How do we create opportunities for the sharing of meaning between us? How do we create communities with one another across political, spiritual, ethnic, class and race divides?
It seems important.