1-21-2016 Nothing Lasts

UCE Addictions Ministry
January 21 Agenda

Opening Words

"Long Live Impermanence!
If you suffer, it’s not because things are impermanent.
It’s because you believe things are permanent. When a flower dies, you don’t suffer much, because you understand that flowers are impermanent."
Thanks to impermanence, everything is possible
Thich Nhat Hanh

Welcome

Welcome to the UCE Addictions Ministry Group. We are a group of people who have
struggled with our own addictions and the addictions of others. We hope to struggle well
together as we work towards finding sanity, peace, love, and healthy relationships in our
lives. We will strive to spend our time together in a spirit of love embracing the inherent
worth and dignity of all. We accept and respect the varied paths that our members will
take to find sanity, peace, love, and healthy relationships. We covenant to be together
in a confidential, safe environment where we can explore our paths and our stories.

Our Relational Covenant
Embrace and practice deep listening
We will strive to be respectful of our limited time and try to keep our comments focused on the issues that have brought us here.
Experience the group in a non-judgmental frame of mind.
Build trust within the group.
Confidentiality about specifics shared or discussed is imperative for our success.
We each take full responsibility for what we share or say, recognizing retractions are acceptable as well.
Meetings will always start and end on time.

Check-in and Processing of Check-in

Discussion: This too shall pass

Excerpts from It All Happens, and Nothing Lasts
Sharon Salzburg

One rainy day, I pulled into the parking lot of the hotel and saw there was an extraordinary rainbow filling the sky. The courtyard was filled with people trying to photograph the rainbow with their cellphones or cameras, so I jumped out of the car to do the same.
Unfortunately, by the time my old iPhone turned on, the rainbow was gone. All that remained were luminous pink clouds. Rather than appreciating the clouds (which were still quite beautiful), all I could think was, “Damn, I knew I should’ve gotten a new iPhone.” I was disappointed by my inability to capture some kind of permanence from the impermanent rainbow.
Then two women left the hotel and walked past where I was standing with my clunky cellphone beneath the pink sky. One of the women turned to the other and smiled. “Wow. Look at those beautiful pink clouds,” she said. It was then that I caught myself thinking, "Wow, don’t they know how they are missing out — it could’ve been a rainbow!"
Of course, I laughed at myself. This awareness of a mental habit was keeping me disconnected from the beauty of life, its impermanence and all. Those pink clouds weren’t bad, really. And no one can successfully hold onto a rainbow, though we so often try.
May you enjoy the rainbows, and/or any pink clouds that come your way, even as they constantly change. May each bubble — the moments of life — arising and passing away, help open us to greater wisdom and love.

 

Closing Words

"Nothing lasts"--
how bitterly the thought attends each loss

"Nothing lasts" --
a promise also of consolation

Grief and hope
the skipping rope's two ends,
twin daughters of impatience.

One wears a dress of wool, the other cotton

Jane Hirshfeld

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