Finding Meaning in the Mundane

When members of the Sedona Unitarian Universalist Fellowship gather, we ponder and discuss what makes life meaningful.  For the rest of the week, we try to apply what we conclude to our everyday, mundane activities — such as making breakfast.

To us, religion is about connectedness, about our relationships with ourselves, our local community, and the world at large. For example, a common Unitarian blessing before a meal is, “As we sit down to enjoy this food, we remember that it is brought to us through the blessings of nature and the labors of people throughout the world.  We wish for all of them what we have today.”

This connects us momentarily to people globally, people we will never know, but upon whom we depend daily. This consideration of our food’s origins provides a glimpse of human interdependence and the wonder of our existence.

We try to relate this awareness to our everyday behavior, such as how we shop for food.  For example, we check to be sure we purchase “Fair Trade” breakfast coffee. That’s just a mundane action, but coffee is the second biggest import to the U.S., after oil.  Therefore, buying Fair Trade coffee contributes to having a positive world-wide impact.

When we can, we look beyond the price, quality and packaging of a product, to consider the conditions of the workers involved and the product’s environmental impact.

We know that everything we do can potentially make a difference in this world, perhaps to correct an injustice, to comfort a friend, or to help a neighbor. Our most mundane acts, especially if we combine them with what others do, can have profound effects and give deeper meaning to how we live.  

[SUUF Member Paul Friedman continues to provide weekly articles for publication in the Red Rock News. This article – or a variation thereof – appeared in the Dec 16, 2022 issue]