At the beginning of the new millennium we see that a proportionately small group of human beings has attempted to hoard the blessing. It has become clear that justice must be extended not just within the human realm, but beyond it to all beings and to Earth herself. So an Earth-based spirituality must include a spirituality of liberation that challenges us into right relationship with all other creatures.
We are keenly aware of the escalating tension within the Earth community: the increased polarization and aggressivity between political ideologies, ongoing environmental degradation, and the dominance of short term thinking driven by the dogma of an extractive economic model. The challenge is to remain awake to this moment as one of potential transformation of the human-Earth relationship. The focus of our spiritual practice therefore becomes one of engaging in a conscious process of maturation.
In the Ruah community, our spiritual journey is framed by the question articulated by cultural historian, mystic and monk, Thomas Berry: “How will we reinvent the human and move into the only process that matters--our authentic maturation as a species? Only by understanding ourselves within the unfolding cosmos as a whole can we begin to discover the meaning and the blessing of ordinary things".
This understanding is rooted in pre-Biblical belief and is consistent with the mystics of many faith traditions. At Ruah, while we draw primarily from the wellsprings of the Jewish and Christian traditions of our members, we also honour and celebrate the wisdom expressed in the writings, the art, the poetry and the music of other faith traditions.
Buddhist teacher Thich Nhat Hanh has expressed it well:
“Through the practice of deep looking and deep listening, we become free, able to see the beauty and value in our own and others’ tradition. Yet, to get to the point of seeing the beauty and value in others’ traditions, one must look and listen deeply into one’s own.”
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