A Pocketful of Principles – 7

A Pocketful of Principles – 7

Religious Education at Home for preschoolers, kids, youth and adults

from material developed by Lauren Wyeth, Director of Children, Youth & Family Ministries at the First Universalist Church of Minneapolis

Explore the other Principles

7th Principle
Value and care for the web of life that connects us to all.

7th Principle Playlist
Listen to our 7th Principle playlist here or build your own collection of songs to remind you of the complex web of connections and interdependence. Put it on as you’re starting your day, winding down at night, or anytime you want to fill your home with the reminder of your place in the family of life on Earth.


“Unitarian Universalist congregations affirm and promote respect for the interdependent web of all existence of which we are a part.”

Read a reflection on our 7th Principle from the Rev. Forrest Gilmore on the UUA website.

[Image description: The words “respect our interdependent web of existence,” in dark green letters, are superimposed on a background of overlapping circles in a variety of pale greens.]

Watch the video above, The Curious Garden

7th Principle Stories for All Ages
There are many children’s stories and wisdom tales that help us appreciate our connection and interdependence with the natural world. Here are a few for families:

Questions for reflection, discussion or journaling:
For all ages

  • Call to mind the natural environment you know best. It may be the park closest to your apartment, your own backyard, or a particular part of a lakeshore you visit regularly. Draw or describe this place, recalling as many details as you are able. What is the earth or soil like? What grows there? What bugs and animals are present at different times of the year?
  • What feelings come up in you as you draw or describe this familiar landscape and its inhabitants?
  • How do the plants, animals, insects and objects in this place enrich and support your life?
  • How do you — or could you — tend and care for this little corner of the Earth?

Image description: A piece of dark wood furniture is adorned with natural objects including a feather, pinecones and rocks, as well as several small animals carved out of stone, a clay vessel, and a stylistic painting of a blue jay.

Suggested Activity: Create a Nature Altar
Before a family meal, create a nature altar in honor of our 7th Principle. Head outside to collect leaves, buds, pinecones, greenery, stones, feathers, and other natural objects. You might even collect a bit of water in a small jar. Find a bit of fabric to lay down first, then arrange the items around a chalice on your table, adding your nature drawings if you’d like. When you sit down together, light the chalice with the chalice lighting words, above. Invite each family member to share something they love and appreciate about nature as you enjoy your meal.

Watch the video above, Whole Body Prayer

For all ages
Practice the Whole Body Prayer, ideally in a beautiful natural setting. If you do this activity together, invite each member of your family to add a new movement to make it your own. Looking for more opportunities to move your body? Our 7th Principle playlist is very danceable!

[Image description: The words, “The molecules that comprise our body are traceable to the crucibles of the centers of stars. These atoms and molecules are in us because in fact, the universe is in us. And, we are not only figuratively, but literally, stardust. – Neil deGrasse Tyson,” are superimposed on a colorful image of outer space.]

Explore the other Principles