In addition to finding a good, affordable yoga studio and obtaining a NY Public Library card, one of my priorities upon moving to New York was finding a new church.
I'm a Unitarian Universalist (UU)- something I don't often discuss here on this blog. Discussing religion, both in person and online, makes me uncomfortable because of the myriad opportunities for misunderstanding and judgment, so I generally shy away. But I will say this: I was raised as a UU and its principles helped to lay the foundation for the values I hold as an adult. While I did not regularly attend church during my late teens and the first couple years of my twenties, I resumed semi-regular church attendance during my last year of college. UU sermons are (at least, in my experience) thought-provoking and challenging to the mind. More often than not, a UU service presents tough questions rather than hands down easy answers, and I like that about my faith. It's free of dogma.
Today's sermon centered on thankfulness, as I imagine most sermons do during this time of year. The title was "Absence of Limit," and it focused on infinity: the infinite things we have to be thankful for, the infinite ways we can show our gratitude, and infinite ways in which we are connected and bound to one another. It was a great sermon- the kind that has my brain swimming in thoughts long after leaving church- and far too eloquent for me to sum up in just one sentence.
The minister's words were particularly timely for me today, as I've been thinking a lot about both thankfulness and the support of others during this time of life transition. Although I talk about the challenges of carving out my own life in New York, I cannot forget the fact that everywhere I go in this city, I am supported by a web of roots.
My roots in New York are varied- some are deep and old, while some are newer and fresher. When I attend this particular church, I sit in the same pews as my grandparents did. When I ride the subway to Queens, I travel through a tunnel built by my ancestors. When I make weekend plans, I meet up with the familiar faces of friends (many of whom I became acquainted with through this very blog). When I feel the need to escape my roommate-filled apartment, a family member is just a subway ride away. These roots intertwine into an invisible web that surrounds me. If I should lean, the web is there. And for that, I am very thankful.