Introduction to Flow

Introduction to Flow

This month we dive into the concept of flow.  According to psychologist Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi, being in a state of flow is to be deeply immersed and focused in creative activity. Flow can be an experience of connection with the larger whole, or combining a sense of purpose and a sense of meaning, it can be losing oneself in an intense activity, all of which can bring great happiness.  Connection, purpose and meaning are spiritual concerns, and so flow is of interest to us as Unitarian Universalists.

Csikszentmihalyi described the concept of flow as:

“. . . a state of concentration so focused that it amounts to absolute absorption in an activity. Everyone experiences flow from time to time and will recognize its characteristics: people typically feel strong, alert, in effortless control, unselfconscious, and at the peak of their abilities. Both a sense of time and emotional problems seem to disappear, and there is an exhilarating feeling of transcendence.”

As individuals, what does it mean to live in a more fluid, flowing way? How can spiritual practices help us move into the flow more often? What role does creativity play?   This month is an opportunity to explore where you find flow – what brings you into immersive joy – losing all sense of self. It might be fixing a vehicle, running a marathon, or helping a friend, or solving a problem.  Check out the many videos, podcasts, and quizzes that can help you find your way into your best flow state.

In the spirit of living in flow, this month we also honour the elemental force of water. The Canadian Unitarian Council is beginning a social justice focus on water issues, which we are echoing in our Green Sanctuary focus. There are many rich water metaphors and images about “going with the flow”.




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