Our regular Sunday Gathering. An opportunity for wisdom, joy, solace, and community – followed by a healthy dose of caffeine, cake, and conversation.
Gatherings include live music, a story for children, singing, poetry and literature, a talk from our minister, and time for sharing joys and sorrows.
The theme of this week's Gathering is 'Consumerism and Commitment'.
In today's world, most of our interactions involve buying and selling. Whether it's a flat white, a phone, lunch, or a car, we choose the one we want, pull out a card and trade cash for stuff or a service. There is most often no relationship beyond the exchange of funds for material goods. This perspective on life infects other relationships we have, whether with a life partner, a job, a friend, a co-worker, or a community. Instead of feeling committed to the relationship, we are always tempted to shop around and move on.
We lose something profound when we lose track of the importance of relationship. Imagine a shop-keeper who is committed to your satisfaction outside of the obvious desire to keep your business. Imagine yourself giving more than you need to in order to help a business you frequent.
Today, we look at our relationship with community, the ways in which it is undermined by consumerism, and how we can resist the relationship-corroding effects of consumerism.