Lessons from the Avatar: What a 12 year old cartoon character taught me about spirituality, resilience, parenting and leadership

When a Twelve year old Air Bender named Aang learns he is the Avatar, the one responsible for maintaining balance in the Universe, he disappears in an iceberg for 100 years. During that time the Fire Kingdom wages war against the Air Temples, Water Tribes, and Earth Kingdom. Two teenagers from the Water Tribe find the Aang and help him to emerge and live out his destiny of mastering all four elements (Fire, Air, Water, Earth) in order to restore balance to the Universe and save the world.
Watching this story became a family ritual which we returned to year after year. When the theme for the service year, “The Earth, The Air, The Fire, The Water,” was announced it seemed only fitting that I would revisit this story again. I will share my reflections on the lessons I gained from watching the Avatar and the connections to spirituality, resilience, parenting and leadership which emerged.
Jenn is a lifelong Unitarian Universalist. She has been with MMUUF since 2006 and is currently serving as the Treasurer of the Steering Committee. Jenn has also served as the President, Vice President, and member of the RE committee. She has dedicated her career to working with community based organizations focused on building resilience and hope in the face of adversity. Jenn is a parent, partner, and procrastinator.


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