There's a popular paradigm in which this grand, earthly adventure is perceived as a practice round, a qualifying heat - if you will - for something of a "real" experience which is to follow after human death.
Unity doesn't support such a paradigm. I certainly don't support such a paradigm.
In fact, I would go so far as to assert that it's a profound honor for us as souls to be here in this world of form, capable of tasting chocolate, hearing Rachmaninoff, smelling rain and touching a loved one. I would go so far as to suggest that the degree to which we cultivate a general obliviousness to the countless miracles of this life is the degree to which we will remain oblivious to the countless miracles of the next life.
All we're really doing is getting good at deflecting golden moments in the name of a misguided and antiquated idea.
At the approach of Memorial Day weekend, let us challenge this paradigm. Let's stop learning about each other through memorial services and obituaries. Let us seek to truly "see" each other - to truly "see" our loved ones - while we are still here, together in this wondrous garden.
For the second year, I ask you to submit that one, truly remarkable story about your life, that I might incorporate it into the lesson on Memorial Day Sunday, May 28th. Truly, each of us is surrounded by divine genius, by profound wisdom, by staggering resource. Let us cultivate eyes to see the truth of this in those faces which surround us.
It was Ralph Waldo Emerson who challenged each of us to "live in the sunshine, swim the sea, drink the wild air," not out-then, not out-there, but right now. And right here. Let us put his wisdom to the test during the upcoming holiday and beyond.