Reunion, Re-Union

Reunion. It’s one of those great words that is a noun and also can be a verb. It’s “the act of reuniting; the state of being reunited; a gathering of members of a group who have been separated; ex. A reunion of parts or particles of matter.” [Merriam-Webster] Re-union can be an internal process, as well as an external one.

I’d equivocated about going to a reunion of my high school class. I’m grateful to the friend who told me, “There may be someone there who is looking forward to seeing you, or whom you will be glad to see again.” I went, thinking that even if I felt out of synch at the reunion, I’d have a chance to spend time with my sister.

I’m glad I went, glad for time with my sister, glad to re-meet people who were classmates so long ago. The intervening years have been kind and nourishing to some, hard on others. Each of my former classmates reflects the self who bore their name then. Core personalities remain the same. At the same time, all of us are different people now, with life and many lessons behind us. Reunion for me wasn’t just re-meeting former classmates. It brought something from my past into my present, to honor, hold, and make peace with it.

Re-union is part of the work of spiritual and psychological development. It’s bringing opposing pieces and parts together, to achieve some sort of balance in the see-saw between light and dark, above and below, physical and spiritual, male and female, left brain analytical and right brain creative, nurture and discipline, play and work, order and chaos.

Colleague Rev. Karen Baldwin(1) recently spoke about the balance point as a momentary state. In the see-saw of life, each end goes up and down, passing through the balance point in the middle again and again. The object isn’t to maintain the point of balance, for that is stasis, but to keep the highs from flinging you into the stratosphere and the lows from shattering your spine. We keep coming back to the reference point of balance in the middle.

We’re well into autumn now, deepening into the dark half of the year, collecting nourishment and weaving our cocoons for hibernation time. As you prepare to enter the cave of winter reflection, what opposing pieces and parts of yourself do you want to contemplate? What do you want to bring to reunion?

(1) www.RevKarenBaldwin.com

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"Animals are such agreeable friends - they ask no questions, they pass no criticisms." - George Eliot
"The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated." - Gandhi
"There is little that separates humans from other sentient beings – we all feel pain, we all feel joy, we all deeply crave to be alive and live freely, and we all share this planet together." - attributed to Gandhi
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