Bye-Bye March – Hello April – COVID19

Wash hands Quote Graphic Instagram PostThis has certainly been an interesting month with the COVID-19 global pandemic that the world has been facing for the past few weeks.  I’ve been constantly reminding myself that even in the midst of all this, there is a real true sense of joy and vitality that runs like a river deep down inside of us. I’ve seen videos of people singing from their balconies! Yet and still, we are in the midst of a “new normal.” Here in Northern California, we were the first to undergo an active official “sheltering in place” program on March 17, but it had been swiftly building and coming to that. I’ve gone out for food a couple of times and came right back in. Each day I have been walking to get exercise. It’s also been the perfect time to connect and re-connect with family and friends through various means of communication. (My day job continues, thankfully — I’ve been working remotely now since September).

It’s more important than ever to remain connected and express as much love, gratitude, compassion, and empathy as we possibly can. My ask of everyone is to follow the guidelines that we are asked to follow; check out official reputable sources for information (such as the CDC); you never know whose life you might be saving. Stay in place and save a life. There is plenty of anxiety and tension circulating. So I invite everyone, myself included, to slow down, breathe, meditate, contemplate, and pray, or do whatever spiritual practice works for you to stay centered, purposeful, and positive. Be prayerful and practical. We can help each other through this, even in small ways. Whatever is within our power and means, help others. I’ve seen some folks online sharing their creative gifts and talents, too! Singing, music, dance, …the arts are flourishing!

As human beings, it’s natural for us to try to make meaning of it all, leaning on either spirituality, or conspiracy theories, to help us cope.  However, we have to stay grounded. One thing that stands out for me is that I see the resiliency, the coming together, the heroes and sheroes, the health care workers, service industries, the humanitarian rallying of thousands of communities and all the good that seems to emerge in a crisis. Why must it take a crisis before we see this great outpouring of these gifts? My guess is that this good-will is there all the time but rises to the surface more prominently when there is a huge crisis such as this. My hope is that we, the human race, can shift to a higher, more just and equitable way of being a global community. On some level, maybe we can dwell together in more humane ways working for the good of all humankind, regardless of race, religion, nationality, ethnicity, gender, identity, age, or any other identification or classification. How will we be different when this subsides? or will we be? Distancing Graphic Instagram Post

This is my prayer for all as we come to the end of the Season for Non-Violence (which started on January 31 and runs through April 4th; read more about it at Commonway.org).  I have been saying the pledge and including this in my prayer and meditation time:

“May all beings be well – – May all beings be secure – – May all beings be happy”

I am a firm believer in the power of affirmative prayer.

And as the Prayer for Protection affirms:

The Light of God surrounds us, the love of God enfolds us, the power of God protects us, the Presence of God watches over us. Wherever we are, God is.

Silent Unity® is normally open 24×7 if you would like for someone to pray with you (1-800-YOU-PRAY). Oops, sorry they have reduced hours now. Click here for more info on Silent Unity®.  No matter what religion or denomination (no division), they’ll pray with you a confidential prayer. They’ve been at it non-stop for over 125 years.

What I also love is that the U-PRAY application can also be downloaded to your phone and prayer requests can be submitted via the mobile app at any time. Check out the new Alexa requests also now available.

There’s a whole lot of praying going on, that’s true…imagine… where 2 or 3 are gathered. We don’t have to be physically gathered…we need only touch and agree for the highest good of all…in the secret quiet chambers of our hearts, extending unconditional love out to all. Ask, knock, seek…

I wonder what will be transformed when we emerge from all this?

Be safe, be well. Follow the guidelines.

Love & blessings & JOY to you!

Rev. Dinah