Parenting as a Spiritual Path
Parenting under normal circumstances is extremely challenging. For many families today trying to parent in the midst of a pandemic can feel impossible. Of course the circumstances are made even more trying for those who are also attempting to work from home and help children with online education offerings. Those families with multiple children have extra challenges to navigate.
So many of our People’s families are struggling to meet all the needs before them. What difficult times we are in, when we can’t seek community to help with our children without weighing the real risks to our safety and lives?! If there are ways we can help your family, please let us know!
For me I know that when I’m overwhelmed with the quantity of things before me is when my skillfulness declines. That is when I resort to angry words, lose my cool and generally respond in ways I often regret.
Author Sandy Eastoak ponders the paradox of how to balance being attentive parents with the challenges of living amidst these difficult times. She is a Buddhist practitioner and she notes that the reality of always feeling exhausted with the demands of parenting seemed to make regular meditation practice feel difficult if not impossible.
Feeling frustrated with the constant interruptions of quiet time, when it was finally carved out, she felt impatient and saw the kids as impediments to her practice. Ultimately, she found some peace and balance when she realized that she could use her experience of parenting as a spiritual practice.
Being fully present with kids can be challenging and even more so when there are competing demands on our attention. If one of the goals of our spiritual life is to be calm and centered human beings. Perhaps the practice of attempting to be calm and centered parents, as often as possible, is a spiritual practice we could embrace at this time?
Our Sitting Together curriculum is designed to help children, youth and adults, gain some practice and experience in how to be fully present with whatever is before us, and to use that as the spiritual path, mindfully and with compassion for ourselves and others. I hope you will join in our weekly Zoom sessions to learn and grow together.
Blessed Be, Diane Melvin, Religious Education Director
Religious Education Schedule 2020-2021
Sunday October 11 – Animal Blessing Service at 10:45
Sunday October 11 – First Adult Zoom Class, 1:00-2:30 pm each week
Sunday October 18 – RE Kick Off Sunday
9:15-9:40 – Preschool Zoom
9:45-10:30 – Elementary Zoom
10:45-noon – Sunday Service
1:00-2:30 – Adult Zoom
1:00-2:30 – 8/9th Grade OWL (at church)
8:00-9:00 – Middle and High School Youth Zoom
Complete schedules at http://peopleschurch.net
Please complete a current RE registration form to ensure we have your correct contact info for RE supply mailings and emails: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/1F6DeC2KiGJRKXxN8w1OgSUULUmZhsLu9etR0DeEgmtE/edit
The lifespan religious education theme for this year is:
Cultivating Spiritual Resilience
Using meditation and mindfulness, we’ll offer children, youth and adults the opportunity to cultivate skills to better navigate these challenging times.
We are using the curriculum entitled Sitting Together: A Family-centered Curriculum on Mindfulness, Meditation, and Buddhist Teachings by Sumi Loundon Kim for the elementary and adult classes.
Opportunities for spiritual growth, learning, support and connection include:
- Weekly video lessons for preschool, K-2 & 3-6th for families to use at their convenience. (Including regular supply packets)
- Weekly Zoom class for preschool aged children
- Weekly Zoom class for elementary aged children
- Weekly Zoom class for Adults
(All the above using Sitting Together)
- Weekly Zoom class for 7-12th grades using A Still Quiet Place for Teens and The Mindfulness Journal for Teens.