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Women in Group

UCLA STUDY ON FRIENDSHIP AMONG WOMEN

By Gale Berkowitz

A landmark UCLA study suggests friendships between women are special.
They shape who we are and who we are yet to be. They soothe our tumultuous inner world, fill the emotional gaps in our marriage, and help us remember who we really are. By the way, they may do even more.

Scientists now suspect that hanging out with our friends can actually counteract the kind of stomach-quivering stress most of us experience on a daily basis. A landmark UCLA study suggests that women respond to stress with a cascade of brain chemicals that cause us to make and maintain friendships with other women. It’s a stunning find that has turned five decades of stress research—most of it on men—upside down. “Until this study was published, scientists generally believed that when people experience stress, they trigger a hormonal cascade that revs the body to either stand and fight or flee as fast as possible,” explains Laura Cousino Klein, Ph.D., now an Assistant Professor of Biobehavioral Health at Penn State University and one of the study’s authors. “It’s an ancient survival mechanism left over from the time we were chased across the planet by saber-toothed tigers.

Now the researchers suspect that women have a larger behavioral repertoire than just “fight or flight.” “In fact,” says Dr. Klein,”it seems that when the hormone oxytocin is released as part of the stress responses in a woman, it buffers the “fight or flight” response and encourages her to tend children and gather with other women instead. When she actually engages in this tending or befriending, studies suggest that more oxytocin is released, which further counters stress and produces a calming effect. This calming response does not occur in men”, says Dr. Klein, “because testosterone—which men produce in high levels when they’re under stress—seems to reduce the effects of oxytocin. Estrogen”, she adds, “seems to enhance it.”

The discovery that women respond to stress differently than men was made in a classic “aha!” moment shared by two women scientists who were talking one day in a lab at UCLA. “There was this joke that when the women who worked in the lab were stressed, they came in, cleaned the lab, had coffee, and bonded”, says Dr. Klein. “When the men were stressed, they holed up somewhere on their own. I commented one day to fellow researcher Shelley Taylor that nearly 90% of the stress research is on males. I showed her the data from my lab, and the two of us knew instantly that we were onto something.”

The women cleared their schedules and started meeting with one scientist after another from various research specialties. Very quickly, Drs. Klein and Taylor discovered that by not including women in stress research, scientists had made a huge mistake: The fact that women respond to stress differently than men has significant implications for our health.

It may take some time for new studies to reveal all the ways that oxytocin encourages us to care for children and hang out with other women, but the “tend and befriend” notion developed by Drs. Klein and Taylor may explain why women consistently outlive men. Study after study has found that social ties reduce our risk of disease by lowering blood pressure, heart rate, and cholesterol. “There’s no doubt,” says Dr. Klein, “that friends are helping us live.” In one study, for example, researchers found that people who had no friends increased their risk of death over a 6-month period. In another study, those who had the most friends over a 9-year period cut their risk of death by more than 60%.

Friends are also helping us live better. The famed Nurses’ Health Study from Harvard Medical School found that the more friends women had, the less likely they were to develop physical impairments as they aged, and the more likely they were to be leading a joyful life. In fact, the results were so significant, the researchers concluded, that not having close friends or confidantes was as detrimental to your health as smoking or carrying extra weight! And that’s not all! When the researchers looked at how well the women functioned after the death of their spouse, they found that even in the face of this biggest stressor of all, those women who had a close friend confidante were more likely to survive the experience without any new physical impairments or permanent loss of vitality. Those without friends were not always so fortunate.
Yet if friends counter the stress that seems to swallow up so much of our life these days, if they keep us healthy and even add years to our life, why is it so hard to find time to be with them? That’s a question that also troubles researcher Ruthellen Josselson, Ph.D., co-author of “Best Friends: The Pleasures and Perils of Girls’ and Women’s Friendships (Three Rivers Press, 1998). “Every time we get overly busy with work and family, the first thing we do is let go of friendships with other women,” explains Dr. Josselson. “We push them right to the back burner. That’s really a mistake because women are such a source of strength to each other. We nurture one another. And we need to have unpressured space in which we can do the special kind of talk that women do when they’re with other women. It’s a very healing experience.”
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Description of the Women’s Corner

The Women’s Corner is produced to serve as a method of communication for the Women’s Corps—an informal group of women who strive to be active in serving and uplifting the people of our world. Please share your thoughts and service projects here.

The Women’s Corps Purpose Statement

A Call to Lift Up Our Universe Mother Spirit

The Women’s Corps accepts the call to make manifest our Universe Mother Spirit's love in the world.

To that end,

  • we will be led by spirit to be a force for good in the world.
  • we will experience and share the joy of serving our sisters and brothers.
  • we will lift up our Mother and her values by becoming those values.
  • we will help to empower other women to grow in spirit and spiritual values.

If you would like to make your own personal commitment to our Universe Mother Spirit, download, print out, sign the pledge, and keep it as a reminder of your commitment.

Commitment to Lift Up Our Universe Mother Spirit

I accept the call to make manifest our Universe Mother Spirit's love in the world.

To that end,

  • I will be led by spirit to be a force for good in the world.
  • I will experience and share the joy of serving my sisters and brothers.
  • I will lift up our Mother and her values by becoming those values.
  • I will help to empower other women to grow in spirit and spiritual values.
Music from the retreat

Music from the retreat

I Open to You, My Beloved

Ohm; Oh

I open to you, my beloved

Ohm

I open to you, my beloved

I feel your love

I taste your love

I drink your love

I open

 

You Are So Beautiful

You are so beautiful to me

You are so beautiful to me

Can’t you see?

You’re everything I hope for

You’re everything I need

You are so beautiful to me

Such joy and happiness you bring

Such joy and happiness you bring

Just like a dream

You’re like a guiding light

Shining in the night

You’re everything I need

You are so beautiful to me

You are so beautiful to me

Divine Mother

Divine Mother, my Divine Mother

Divine Mother, my Divine Mother

Engrossed is the bee of my mind

On the blue lotus feet of my Divine Mother (repeat)

 

I Open To You

Grace of the Mother

Soft rain falls; teardrops longing

How long will I call, for union with you?

For union with you

My robe is warn (my robe is warn)

Person is gone I use to be (Person is gone)

Remnants hold on (Remnants hold on)

When will I let them go?

Won’t you help me let them go?

Grace of the Mother, the Mother

(harmony) Grace of the One

Grace of the Mother, the Mother

Let me be with you, in love

You’re here before me

A misty veils across my eyes

Let the mist be departed now

Let me know Divine Light

Let me look through your eyes

Grace of the Mother, Oh the Mother (harmony)

Grace of the One

Grace of the Mother, the Mother

Let me be with you, in love, in love

I’ll wait with a patient heart

I feel you work in me

The time has come for ripen me

Open is all I am; open is all I am

Grace of the Mother, the Mother

Grace of the One

Grace of the Mother, Oh the Mother

Let me be with you

Let me be with you

Let me be with you

In love, in love, in love, in love

In love, in love

 

Beauty in the World

Gentle With Myself

(repeat) I will be gentle with myself

I will be gentle with myself

And I will hold myself like a newborn baby child

(repeat) I will be tender with my heart

I will be tender with my heart

And I will hold my heart like a newborn baby child

(repeat) I will only go as fast as the slowest part of me

Feels safe to go

(repeat) I will be easy on myself

I will be easy on myself

And I love myself like a newborn baby child

instrumental

(repeat) And I will only go as fast as the slowest part of me

Feels safe to go, 2 now I know

(repeat) I am gentle with myself

I am gentle with myself

And I hold myself like a newborn baby child

And I rock myself like a newborn baby child

And I hold myself like a newborn baby child

And I love myself like a newborn baby child

 

I Open to You

Holy Mother

Verse I:

Holy Mother, holy Mother

My heart longs to be free

Holy Mother, holy Mother

Dissolve me into thee (2x)

Verse 2:

Holy Mother, holy mother

Please purify my mind

Holy Mother, holy mother

Let me feel your love divine (2x)

Verse 3:

Holy Mother, holy Mother

Hold my hand within your hand

Holy Mother, holy Mother

Let me feel all that I am (2x)

Holy Mother, holy Mother

Holy Mother, holy Mother

Repeat Verse I

Join our Facebook Page

SISTERS IN SPIRIT FACEBOOK PAGE

Meredith Tenny, Paula Thompson, Joann Wiedman, Kaye Cooper, Mary Huggins, Michelle Klimesh, Cecelia Lampley, Sharon Lanier, Dolores Nice

In the wake of IC14, several of us women got on Skype and began talking about our common interest in Our Mother—the Universe Mother Spirit of Nebadon. Many people have expressed interest in this topic. Our goal is to increase awareness of her throughout the Urantia movement. This revelation introduces the family of God. Our Mother’s tender presence heals, invigorates, and empowers. All of us, men as well as women, need a deeper experience of our spiritual family. The time is approaching when we will share that family with the world. Let us honor and serve Our Father Michael and Our Mother.

We have observed that some women readers are relatively isolated with few opportunities for the support and sharing of other women readers. Even those of us who are not isolated leave our friends at conferences and immediately yearn to continue the wonderful friendships with women who live far from us. Sisters in Spirit is interested in helping to fill those needs. We are in the process of creating a Facebook site so that women who are “Urantia Book” readers can communicate in the warmth of friendship with other women. There will be posts, thought-provoking questions, sharing, and articles to which women can respond, comment on, or you may originate posts of your own. Our Mother will be a frequent topic of discussion, and we are looking forward to getting better acquainted with her.

Access the Our MotherSpirit of Nebadon Facebook.

Kaye Cooper hug

My Vision by Kaye Cooper

My Vision for the organization we are forming is that it be a fluid, creative group of women and men who are known for the way that they relate to each other and to all others. An organic way of functioning has been growing in my mind. I am ready to describe it in a concise, clear statement:

Our Way

  • Our approach is to explore with each other rather than compete.
  • Our attitude is to respect and support each other rather than criticize.
  • Our process is actively to seek the spirit’s guidance rather than to refuse aid and support, insisting on independence.
  • Our commitment is to act on the spirit’s guidance rather than to fear ridicule or rejection.

I am convinced that this is worthy of our personal prayer: that each of us learn consistently to relate in this way. That our loving relationships will exude spiritual fragrance. That those we touch will be influenced to choose this way as well.

If the Urantia Movement lives and relates in this way, respect and power (in the best sense of the word) will flow to women as equal partners in the great adventure of this revelation.

Let us lead the way by living a spirit-led life together.

Dancing With God ~ Embodying the Love of God

Dancing With God ~ Embodying the Love of God

A Retreat for Women at Urantia Foundation
533 W. Diversey Parkway
Chicago, IL 60614
Thursday, September 22 ­- Sunday, September 25, 2016
The Urantia Book tells us that it is the indwelling spirit that individualizes the love of God in the soul.
  
As a follow-up to our last two retreats, “Daughters of God” and “Dancing with God,” we will now step into the “Divine Dance” as we each learn to express our own unique rhythm.
Please join the “Daughters of God” facilitator team Line St-Pierre, Carolyn Prentice, Doreen Heyne and Katharina Becker in an intimate, experiential, and fun weekend!
Together we will co-create a milieu of trust within a spiritual circle, delving into questions such as:
  • How is this divine dance encouraging me to carry the torch of morality and spirituality into the world around me?
  • How have I come to know and experience God’s love and wisdom as a woman?
  • How do I come to know and love myself as God loves me?
The cost for three days is $195.00 and includes shared overnight accommodations,
breakfast, lunch, and Thursday evening dinner.
Friday and Saturday dinners may be enjoyed at one of our many local restaurants.
If you would like to join us or want more details, please contact Joanne Strobel at joanne@urantia.org.
You may also call Urantia Foundation during business hours at 773-525-3319.
Roberta's Rules of Order

Roberta’s Rules

Here’s Roberta’s Rules, something Nancy Votrain came up with when we were trying to conduct our UCNOW  meetings in a new,  more spiritually oriented way.  The process has been evolving as the group tried to use consensus when planning the Gathering at the Hood.  Nancy is the one that wrote it out.

(Roberta’s Rules Printable Version)

Purpose 

As we know, the Universe has order! The purpose of the Meeting Guide is to provide a process for making decisions that are effective. We know anything we do which has value is Spirit led.

Our Intention

Our intention is to co-create communication that supports listening to Spirit, and each other, and then sharing from our hearts. We begin with connection in consciousness which seeks to uplift our material group towards in-circuiting with our celestial friends and spirit circuits.

Before we can plan what to do as a community, we need to know who we are and what our hearts and spirits would like to express.  To do that, we need to listen in a new way.

As a newly forming community, we want to find out what each person’s inner teacher has to say.  Silence is an opportunity to listen to Spirit. We return again and again to Spirit; not just in our opening and closing prayer time, but also when we are exploring meaningful questions together. Taking a minute of silent reflection and connection with Spirit is especially important when we are not in agreement. This pause allows each of us to again bring our consciousness back to our Spirit circuit.

Additionally we practice the 5 “A’s”. 

  • Acknowledge what the person said
  • Ask open-ended questions
  • Ask clarifying questions
  • Accept other ideas relish in the beauty of different ways of thinking and now knowing another way to look at it.
  • Appreciate each other’s ideas
  • Responsibilities of meeting participants
  • Notify co-chairs if you are unable to attend.
  • Read agenda and all documents prior to meeting
  • Research agenda items and send out supporting documents  if necessary,

Responsibilities of co-chairs:

The co-chairs plan ahead and email to team the documents needed for the group to be prepared to make decisions efficiently and effectively. Co-chairs determine who will facilitate the meeting using the approved process (TBD).

Sample Agenda

Agenda is sent out 10 days prior to the scheduled meeting.

Frequency of Meetings

Meetings are scheduled once a month.

Beginning prayer

At beginning of group, co-chair asks for someone to lead us in prayer, allowing time for the Spirit guidance. We express gratitude for each person, and for all the spiritual helpers that are with us. We are mindful of our Words (which we say), Attitude and focus (which we bring) and the Experience (which we co-create and actively participate in).

Approval or correction of minutes

  • Read and approve minutes. Are there any corrections to the minutes as distributed? If not the minutes stand approved as distributed.
  • Take corrections until there are no further corrections. Approve minutes as corrected.
  • If there are no (further) corrections, the minutes stand approved as distributed.

Reports (committees)

Old business agenda items (address first)

  • Handle debate, put the question; announce the result.
  • Is there any further business to come before the meeting?
  • Making and Handling Motions
  • Voting using Green, Yellow and Red indicators

New Business

  • Is there new business? If so, the facilitator (one of the co-chairs) recognizes the person and asks for a motion. Person makes motion and it is seconded.
  • A committee of three members will volunteer to create recommendations on proposed motion.
  • Repeat process, if needed

Announcements

Next meeting time verified

Gratitude

  • We end each meeting with grateful appreciations to strengthen our bonds and connections.

How to get a good nights sleep?

In today’s competitive world, sleep is more of a luxury than a necessity. Sleep is important for the well being, both emotionally and physically for an individual. Insufficient sleep or no sleep has long lasting health and psychological disorders. If you have been experiencing insomnia, it may be due to a number of factors, including stress, anxiety or depression. In order to address your sleep problem, it is best to consult an experienced psychologist who can help you change your behaviour, manage feelings and emotions that may interfere with your sleep.

Read more

Women in Group

UCLA STUDY ON FRIENDSHIP AMONG WOMEN

By Gale Berkowitz A landmark UCLA study suggests friendships between women are special. They shape who we are and who we …

Description of the Women’s Corner

The Women’s Corner is produced to serve as a method of communication for the Women’s Corps—an informal group of women …