Tag Archives: United States

WHAT IS “GOD IS A BROWN GIRL TOO”?

For our 100th blog, I decided to re-visit the genesis of God is a Brown Girl Too.  God is a Brown Girl Too is a spiritual movement that was born when I was in seminary and the Holy Spirit revealed to me that one aspect of my Rev Loving leading the sessioncalling was to uplift the divine nature of women and girls of color everywhere.  This movement is called God is a Brown Girl Too because it is not limited to Africa but to brown women and girls worldwide.  Why?  Because we have been marginalized, demonized and denigrated throughout history and need to reconstruct our understanding of Spirit as us – not as some old white man who could care less about us.  We need to recapture the beauty, grace and power of our divine birthright.

God as Mother, Father, Creator of us all is always present as us all, always loving, always continuing to express as us. 

Sabrina and KiaThe Brown Girl represents the daughter of all beginnings.  Genetic studies and fossil evidence show that humans in Africa, between 200,000 and 150,000 years ago.  Based on our knowledge to date, our foremothers left Africa between 125,000 and 60,000 years ago, and that over time these humans replaced earlier human populations such as Neanderthals.   And yet, because those who re-wrote history and science and religion left us obscured, worthless, shameful, or – at best – comely, we fail to realize who we really are: made in the image and likeness of the creator of all. 

God is a Brown Girl Too exercises the power that we all have to re-claim our legacy as God’s image and likeness for ourselves.

 Womanist Alice Walker understood the significance of Brown Girl-ology when she wrote The Color PurpleCelie is the downtrodden Spirit within,God is a Brown Girl Too 2010 Retreat 037 who does not find her fullest expression in life until she finds out that God is not a man – but is everything, even the color purple!  Shug Avery sings, when you feel the truth and love what you feel, you have found God.  Understanding our Oneness with the heart and purpose of the Brown Girl, who merely sits in the shadows of scripture, dances on the edge of time, nonexistent or irrelevant to most – is a challenge worth pursuing because it is by seeing beyond her face-lessness, name-lessness and voice-lessness that we find ourselves.   Creating Outside the Box Three

People from all races, religions, nationalities, and cultures flock to hear the Brown Girl’s voice in The Color Purple on Broadway and to witness her story of realizing that God is within her and everyone else – not merely to be entertained but because there is a ministry in her God is a Brown Girl Too Prayermessage. 

 When I arrived at New York Theological Seminary, I met Drs. Delores Williams and Anne Elliott, in a course that I took on the Spiritual Traditions of Nineteenth Century African American Women.  These two womanist theologians taught me that theology is not just how the white man sees God – but how we each walk and talk with God; that African American women have a special relationship with Jesus;  that we are moved by the Holy Spirit in a particular way; that we fail to question the messages that we embrace as gospel – like the rape of the slave girl Hagar at the bidding of Sarah; that black women through time have defied death and slavery to bring the word of God; that we have a heritage which not only anoints us with salvation but also with hope. Spirit of the Living God is My Breath and My Heartbeat

Drs. Williams and Elliott laid part of the foundation for the beginning of this discourse with acknowledgement of how God expresses as me, along with my background in Unity. 

Pam and Lia Beautiful movementUnity is a nondenominational faith, which teaches that there is no separation between the human spirit and God: that in this eternal Oneness, the “I AM”, we are a living expression of God.Gathering for Morning Prayer Aboard the Ship  Some may find this heretical or blasphemous, but in 2 Corinthians 6:16, the Bible teaches us that “God hath said I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and will be their God.” In 1 Corinthians 3:16, Paul said “Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you.” He said that “we live and move, and have our being” in God  (Acts 17:28). We loved

DSC08154[1]In Romans 8:9, the biblical witness said “Ye are not the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you.” In John 10:34-35, Jesus said, “it is not written in your law, I said, ye are Gods.” In John 14:12, Jesus said “He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do.”  These scriptures and similar passages form the foundation for the church that Spirit formed through me: SPIRITMUV.  SPIRITMUV is the spiritual birthplace for God is a Brown Girl Too.

Yvonne and Paul

Like Unity, SPIRITMUV teaches that we have the same consciousness that Jesus Christ had, “Christ Consciousness.”  Therefore, it is imperative for us to seek and embrace the kingdom in our lives through our conscious connection with the Spirit of God: in every word that we speak, every vision that we have, every breath that we breathe, every inch of space that we take up.  God dwells within us and does not depart from us.  We are the DSC_0438temple of God and we live and move and have our being in God.  We are not only flesh but also Spirit; there is no separation between us and God.      GBGII 2012 BBB               

 In 1997, when I was recuperating from surgery, I began to write a collection of poetry called “Plain Brown Girl,” thinking not only about myself but about all black women, asking who is thereGBGII 2012 F to tend our wounds and comfort us when we are healing.  The Brown Girl spoke through me through centuries, reminding me of that she is the face of God.  She expressed herself as a Brown Girl partly because of the limitations of the use of the word “black” to embrace people who are not only the most beautiful deepest, darkest brown but are other endless shades of beautiful brown. God is love

Brown also embraces cultures that do not fall under the “black” rubric – many Asians, Hispanics and Latinos and Native Americans whose darker color is indigenous to their land but no different than all of the darker sisters who populate this world and have been marginalized and condemned as always less than

GBGII 2012 JDSC_0408Brown Girl-ology is the daughter of womanist theology, born to fashion a God from a past that was before history; courageous enough to create her own myths; inventive enough to question the founding fathers of a faith that is largely prejudiced and racist and sexist; daring enough to remember God as Mother, as well as Father; prophetic enough to celebrate Spirit as herself rather than as a God that does not embrace her image and likeness.  We embrace the Spirit in us through the power ofDSC_0447 community. 

To date, there are been five retreats: the Opening to Consciousness Retreat in 2009; the Awakening to Love Retreat in 2010; the Creating Outside the Box Retreat in 2011; the Tell a New Story Retreat in 2012; and the Hope of Glory Retreat in 2013 aboard the Carnival Glory Cruise Ship to Nova Scotia. In 2014, we will have the Reclaiming the Vortex Retreat in Sedona, Arizona.

God is a Brown Girl Too 2010 Bonding in Faith

God is a Brown Girl Too 2010 Retreat 074We are grateful for those of you who have joined us on these retreats as they cannot exist without you. 

We look forward to you joining us on future retreats.  We also invite you to celebrate yourself and become more aware of Spirit expressing as you by attending our Sunday God is a Brown Girl Too 2010 Retreat 061Worth-Ship Services at the Unity Center of New York City, at 2:30 PM, at 213 West 58th Street, near Broadway. 

We meet in the Upper Room to meditate, pray, teach, sing, grow, listen, embrace, and uplift the divine within. 

Hope you can help keep our community strong by supporting the you in us.

Much love and many blessings on the path,

Reverend Cecilia Loving

 

Advertisements

RECLAIMING THE VORTEX

I enjoyed our “Hope of Glory” retreat to Nova Scotia so much this year that I have already planned next year’s retreat.  SPIRITMUV’s  2014God is a Brown Girl Too Retreat is entitled “Reclaiming the Vortex,” which will take place near Sedona, Arizona at the Sedona Mago Retreat Center (“Mago”) from Monday, May 19, 2014 through Friday, May 23, 2014.

There is no coincidence that Mago means “Mother Earth” in Korean and that the retreat will permit us to celebrate the month of May’s tribute to the mother in us all.

This sixth annual retreat will allow us to go even deeper than we have in the past by . . .

Re-Leasing Through the Womb of Surrender 

We will let go of whatever no longer serves us.  We will learn, create and uplift the blessing of release through practice, ritual and ceremony.

Re-Claiming the Power of Re-Birth

We will embrace our power to change, to heal, to grow, to allow, and to enjoy the process of being reborn through truth, accountability and freedom.

Re-Emerging with the Soul of the Vortex 

We will center in the energy of Sedona’s vortexes. There are 21 powerful vortexes on the earth.  Four of these vortexes are grouped in Sedona, encompassing the entire city – due to the energy generated by the red rocks and giant crystals buried beneath them.  This energy will add to a deeper retreat experience.

Re-Connecting with the Mother Spirit

We will reclaim the beauty that we are as unique expressions of Divine Mind – both individually and collectively.  We will learn to give ourselves the best beauty treatment ever by harnessing and reflecting the light of Spirit.

Re-Membering the Presence of Being

We will honor the sacred practices of being still, quieting our minds so that we stop talking and begin knowing.

Re-Imagining Love with Open Eyes

We will expand our notion of what love is and allow its riches to enlarge our territories to be love, share love and attract the love we desire.

Re-Turning to Doing Greater Things

We will embark on a vision quest of the soul and allow the universe to reveal our highest aspirations, the purest potential  just waiting in the inexhaustible stream of supply to bless us.

Just as we felt the bosom of the ocean while on the ship this summer, the glory of each activity, the force of our prayers, the magnificence of being one with God, we will be blessed as those are Spirit-led to join us will create the consciousness of two or more gathered together to demonstrate absolute good.

Mago is on 160-acres , surrounded by majestic red rocks, Native American ruins and southwestern wilderness. It is owned and operated by Tao Fellowship, a non-profit organization established in 1998 to promote the spirit of Tao as a principle of harmony and peace.

Our sessions will be located in the Arirang Room, named after a spiritual Korean song that celebrates the joy of discovering the true self.  The large rock ledge outside the Arirang Room has a commanding view of Mago.

We will be blessed mind, body and soul.  Delicious healthful vegetarian meals will be served buffet style three times a day, infused with loving energy from the Earth and the people who prepared it.  Mago is equipped with its own 1.8-acre garden, full of fruit trees, vegetables, herbs, flowers, and egg-laying chickens to feed its guests.

We will wear clothing that is easy to move in and comfortable. Layering is recommended to adjust to the changing temperatures throughout the day. We will remove our shoes before entering all rooms so we will bring shoes that easily come on and off.  Guest rooms will be supplied with towels and soap. The pool and jacuzzi are open year round, so we can bring a swimsuit.  Laundry rooms are available.

  

To get more information as well as to register for the 2014 Reclaiming the Vortex Retreat, go towww.godisabrowngirltoo.webs.com.  The total cost – including a shared room, meals and the retreat will be $750, which must be made payable to Spiritmuv so part of it will be tax-deductible.

It can be paid at once or paid as follows: $250 by December 1, 2013; $250 by February 28, 2014; and $250 by April 1, 2014.  Registration will close on December 31, 2013.  Deposits will only be refunded in full until December 31, 2013.  After December 31, 2013, cancellations will be considered fully-deductible contributions to Spiritmuv, which is a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organization.

Checks should be made payable to SPIRITMUV and sent to 376 President Street #2H, Brooklyn, New York 11231.