Sunday Message – January 28th, 2018

By Professor Alastair.

Good morning, and peace to you this day in the Light. I must apologize for my extended absence, but hope the new year has been bright for each of you thus far. The world we live in is full of surprises, and each new day brings us the opportunity to grow and change. Life itself is change– endless processes of consumption and production, growth and decay, moving forward and backward. Many changes are out of our control, beyond the influence of a single individual. We can only control ourselves, our responses, our outlook.

We must observe constantly, take in information about the world around us and how we fit into it. The universe is a vast and ever-expanding web of interconnectivity. It is complete because we are part of it, and we are complete because it is part of us. What we observe about the universe also tells us about ourselves. What we do unto the universe, we do unto ourselves. It is impossible to ignore or deny our connection to the greater whole, and attempting to do so robs us of our strength, and our potential for wisdom.

We contribute our energy to the universe in everything we do, by giving or withholding, by choosing whether we will heal or hurt others with the energy we expend each day. Let us give freely to the universe, which gives freely of itself to us. We exist to contribute to something– society, the collection of human creativity, the food chain, the welfare of our families, the reach of our organizations– we get to decide every morning where we will contribute our energy that day. Let us make our contributions in the name of Light and Love, so the sum of our lives will contribute goodness to the world, and we can strive to make the inevitable changes of life an upward reaching track toward the Light.

Amen and namaste.

Sunday Message – November 5, 2017

Led by Professor Alastair.

Good morning, and peace to you this day in the Light. We give thanks today for the fire of our spirits, and the brilliant tapestry of life, of which we are all part. This world is full of wondrous things, life more diverse than anything we could imagine. We must respect all life, for all living things share in this time and energy, the ephemeral power of now.

The natural world is our mirror and our teacher. Reflected in the world around us is the truth of life and time, the presence of the Light, and the interconnectedness of things. By studying the world, we study ourselves. The water speaks of patience, the air of change. The elegant brutality of predator and prey teach us of life and death, the necessity of each. We move through this chess game of fate and chance, teaching ourselves as we go, watching for patterns and signs, and choosing daily to follow the pull of the Light.

We exist in the intricate balance of life, stewarding a world we do not understand. We must make ourselves allies to each other and the creatures in our care. Let us be mindful citizens of our planet, and act upon it with respect, not greed. Growth and healing come only from compassion, and we must nourish our environments and ourselves in the name of love.

Amen and namaste.

Sunday Message – October 29th, 2017

Led by Professor Alastair.

Good morning, and blessings this day in the Light. We give thanks today for the love in our lives, the life in our lungs, the ways in which the Light provides for us. We are each travellers in this world, each with our maps, paths, and provisions. We must do the best we can with what we have, and follow our heart’s lodestar when the world is dark.

It is difficult to find stability and quietness. All around us, the world roars in its tempestuous chaos. Song is lost in the grind of war, kind words dissolve into frustration and anger, and the generous hand clenches into a fist. This is the toll of Darkness, this harshening and closing of the world. It takes far more courage to remain open and soft in the face of such a cacophony.

But it is love we must trust, and love we must walk in. Love is what will gentle the wilds, and calm hatred’s crimson tides. Love is what makes us able to forgive one another for the darkness in ourselves, and what inspires us to extend our hands to others. Let us love fearlessly, and boldly. Let us place the flower of kindness on the teeth of rage, and look into the eyes of others so that we might find better reflections of ourselves. Let us sow love wherever we walk, at every opportunity, so that the world might blossom on our wake.

Amen and namaste.

Sunday Message – October 22, 2017

Led by Professor Alastair.

Good morning, and peace to you this day in the light. As the air turns colder, the geese flee, and the wind speaks of winter’s horizon, I am reminded of the strange timing of all things. “To everything there is a season, and a time for every purpose under heaven.” Whether by fate or chance, we are each steered through this world, pulled by things unseen along currents we cannot understand.

It is useless, I think, to deny the presence of this underlying current. We cannot know all the turns of our path, all its intersections. The only thing we can do is follow the path ahead of us, address our circumstances as they are, and allow ourselves to accept opportunities the Light provides us. When we allow life to unfold in all its raw and genuine splendor, we glimpse the greater plan, and for a moment, we do not feel so alone.

Change is difficult. The unexpected is startling. Life will present us with things we never imagined. The world is full of the strange and marvelous. The less we resist its strangeness, the more quickly we can enjoy what this world has to offer, and start leaving our marks on it. Let us, then, submit to being conduits of Light, instruments of the Plan, and meet each day of life with open eyes and a welcoming heart.

Amen and namaste.

Sunday Message – August 13th, 2017

Led by Professor Alastair (piano’d by him too).

Good morning, and peace be with you this day in the Light. Peace may seem hard to achieve today, quietness hard to find, and reconciliation far out of reach. Some days there may be only noise. Some days, chaos will take the upper hand. It is on these days when faith is most difficult. Sometimes, my heart is not full of thanksgiving and prayer, only questions.

I find myself today lacking prayer. It isn’t enough. In the face of hatred and violence, it isn’t enough. Faith cannot be passive. We are, all of us, players in a story far bigger than ourselves, and each a participant in a spiritual battle raging every day. We mustn’t simply sit by and pray– God cannot fix these things for us, for we have done them to ourselves. It is only by being radically accepting, choosing love over hatred, peace over violence, and action over inaction that we have a prayer of combating the evil at work in this world.

And there is real evil– to deny it only gives the monster strength. Real evil is insidious; it permeates thought and reason, distorts reality, and makes hatred seem normal where it ought to repulse us. We cannot allow ourselves to become comfortable with the presence of evil. We must move through the world with eyes open, minds sharply attentive, and we must denounce evil, cruelty, and injustice wherever we see it.

While I know many of you listen from all over the world, today I find myself still shocked and heartbroken by what unfolded in practically my backyard yesterday– you may have seen coverage of Charlottesville in Virginia. I find myself compelled to say: these acts of violence will never be acceptable, and whatever ideology that hides behind White Nationalism (by whatever name it’s called), self-righteous patriotism, or Manifest Destiny: this is the great spectre which haunts the nation. This underlying sense of superiority will be the downfall of Goodness if it is not checked. When people begin to denounce reason, choose division over unity, reject science, and believe it is acceptable to take up arms against a neighbor, this is where evil takes hold. These are the things we must challenge daily in our lives, the things which much rally us to fight. One cannot fight evil with violence, for one begets the other in a cycle we see unfolding behind us through history. Instead, we must meet evil with unity, an unwavering commitment to love and decency, and the strength of heart to say, “You will not speak for us, and if that is how you would speak, you will not be welcome here.”

There is freedom of speech, but there is no freedom of consequence. If a person’s speech perpetuates evil and encourages violence, then that person has used their freedom in a way which compromises the freedoms and safety of others. As a people, we must not tolerate this. We must never tolerate evil, and this particular form of evil walks next to us every day. It sows its seeds in our neighbors, our coworkers, sometimes even our families. At times, the scope is so vast it seems there is nothing a person can do– what is one to a multitude? Very important, I’d say. Sometimes all it takes is one voice in a conversation to say, “that isn’t right.” Sometimes a small act of kindness can combat great damage done by evil. It doesn’t matter what you do– speak, write, rally, take relief supplies to those who need them– it only matters that use the voice you have, and do not participate in evil’s advance through your silence.

Peace to you, and be brave in the Light.

Sunday Message – July 16th, 2017

Led by Professor Alastair.

Good morning and blessings, this day in the Light. We come together as mutual seekers of truth, finding ourselves in a world of confusion and division. Every voice screams so loudly, it can seem impossible to hear the truth. I believe the truth, like the Light, is an inherently quiet thing– a still, small voice remaining constant under the cacophony of life. Often when the world is loudest, the truth seems farthest away, but I believe it is there. Always, there.

We carry in us the seed of truth, because in each of us is a spark of God, the Great Truth. If we make ourselves quiet of spirit, open to the lessons of both our inner journey and the world around us, we can become our own teachers, and make our own ways, toward the truth we find in ourselves. It is not for anyone else to tell you who God is, or who you are. These things can only be found through living, surmounting pain, relishing joy, mastering fear, and exploring our worlds boldly. You have as much right to this world as anyone else; let no one ever make you think you are undeserving. We are children of the Light, placed here for a reason; you’ve as much claim as one else. Do not let them silence you. Do not let the truth be drowned out by voices of anger and fearmongering.

If those of us who carry a genuine thirst for the truth remain constant, the truth will come. We must never stop questioning. We must never assume we have the answer, or that the answer we have is complete. We will never know all there is to know about our anything– that is why it frightens me when religions and other organizations promise to reveal the truth. No one can reveal the truth; we can only help each other find it. Like Science, we can only say, “this is my theory, and this is my evidence for it.” To rise in righteous zeal when your god is questioned suggests you are lacking the evidence to support your theory. Perhaps your understanding is not as thorough as you’d like to think. If your understanding is built on what others have told you, I guarantee it is not.

Let us, then, ask of ourselves questions, and do not hide from the answers. The truth is often an uncomfortable business at first, but it is by making ourselves open to the truth that we grow, learn, and flourish. Let us encourage one another, comfort each other when the world whips us, and celebrate the joy that comes in living and learning together.

Amen and Namaste.

Sunday Message – June 24th, 2017

Led by Professor Alastair.

Good morning, and greetings this day in the Light. You will have to forgive my absence last week, as I was away on family matters. I find myself returned this week, reflecting on our mission, on the Love which drives us, and the Light that pulls us together. I assume if you are listening today, you have felt the pull of something beyond yourself, like the rest of us here, and though you may not have a name for it, or understand its scope, it is this power and Light to which we pay homage and declare our allegiance; for it is within the Light that we are made better, more beautiful and more powerful than we could be on our own.

In the Light, there is room enough for all. Heaven, if indeed it is “Heaven”, contains love and space enough for the greatest and smallest, and all inbetween. The Light loves each of us indiscriminately, regardless of where we have come from, or how much we have to offer– it is not about your stature, your talents, or where you have been; it is about you, yourself, the unique contribution that only you can provide to this world, the lives only you can touch, and the love only you can give. You have within you a force and will to rival the tides in the ocean. You have power, peace, and goodwill that can only come from the Light. To know the Light is to know love, and I hope this morning, you can feel the presence and comfort of that love.

Wherever you are, I hope the Light shines on you this day. Whatever pain you carry, may you find comfort. Whatever fear lurks in your heart, may you drive it out with courage. And whatever you do not know, may you be brave and humble enough to seek out the answers. It is only through the pursuits of knowledge, reason, science, and a mutual compassion for humanity, that we will draw ourselves closer to God.

Amen and namaste.