The Spiritual Odyssey Collection
Every summer a series of beloved ERUUFians present the story of their personal and/or spiritual quests. We have curated the collection below. Early childhood memories, important forks in the road, significant events, and a few funny anecdotes all have been recorded! We invite you to view and listen to these tales of insight and enlightenment below.
For more on this experience, please see the course.
June 24, 2018 - Susan Spitzer
Making a UU Jew: The Spiritual Journey of a Yiddish Meydl (Jewish Girl)
Join us for a presentation, from a developmental perspective, of how Susan Spitzer evolved into the UU Jew that she is today.
July 1, 2018 - David Heeks
Space Octopuses, the Happening, a Tin Soldier and the Dark Side
I was raised in an Episcopal church in Tennessee. My parents’ active involvement in the congregation helped me form an early bond to the church. Youth camps and retreats deepened my connection to the faith. Big questions that couldn’t be answered formed cracks in the foundation. A cold February night visited by spirits - I found a new way. I’ve been searching for IT ever since.
July 8, 2018 - Lillie Searles
The life experiences that have fostered my spiritual growth
I believe that the spiritual dimension of our lives develops, not only through intentional practices, but also through engagement in the world. For me, it’s as if this is happening as I walk along a path that runs through a rich and varied landscape with a fluctuating climate. Along the way, I have been inspired by the wisdom and teachings from multiple sources, ancient and modern, and have been influenced by some remarkable people. I have grown spiritually during the process of navigating between very different cultures and when I have encountered the most challenging circumstances. Furthermore, my curiosity about the natural world led me to pursue a career in molecular biology, and this has given me a window into an invisible realm of life. On the whole, these varied experiences have broadened my perspective, giving me an evolving sense of connectedness and of what really matters.
July 15, 2018 - Carol Oettinger
July 22, 2018 - Lonna Harkrader
How I Grew to Be a Social Activist
July 29, 2018 - Joey Zielazinski
Baha'i and Beyond in the Bible Belt
I grew up as the son of two big-city hippies who settled down in the middle of nowhere, Oklahoma. Raised in the mystical Eastern religion of the Baha'i Faith, I was constantly at odds with my rural surroundings. After I finished college I continued questioning, looking for something that was a better fit, eventually landing in a UU congregation. Now, a couple decades later, I find myself going further, searching for more meaning in the world around me.
August 5, 2018 - Richard Brown
Invitation to Step Into the Silence
I am a 46 year old black man born in the south. There is a silence around race that we don't talk about. The silence stretches into our history, touches our love, our hearts, and our everyday interactions. I will talk about my grounding in this space. And how I have crafted my person to survive. This is my journey. I invite you to come and break the silence.
August 12, 2018 - Judy Via
Jonah and the Whale: My Journey Out of Darkness into Life
In April 2013, I went to bed and didn’t get out for four years. I took off my glasses. I stopped bathing and brushing my teeth. I stopped answering the phone. I stopped eating. I stopped speaking. I just lay there. Until January 6, 2017. This is the story of my odyssey back home.
August 19, 2018 - Michael Field
Life is What Happens When You Don’t Have a Map for Your Spiritual Odyssey!
Michael Field will give a light-hearted talk about his 60+ year spiritual journey. He will discuss a few of the milestones pointing out what happens when you don’t plan to find religion, but it finds you! Michael will share some of his insights on topics like family and connectedness.