Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Post 3

Don't surrender your loneliness so quickly.
Let it cut more deep.
Let it ferment and season you as few human
Or even divine ingredients can.
Something missing in my heart tonight
Has made my eyes so soft,
My voice so tender,
My need of God
Absolutely clear.

~ Hafiz

I found this poem over at The Abbey of the Arts where Christine's pondering The Space Between on Holy Saturday.

I confess I've always felt more comfortable with the atmosphere of Holy Saturday. Always troubled by the mental logistics (not the mention the suspension of disbelief) required for the Christian doctrine of the atonement (how could any father - divine or otherwise - put his son through crucifixion???), and equally troubled by the easy triumphalism of Easter Sunday, my God is always the Comforter, the Companion, yes, the Jesus on the road to Emmaus...

The essence of belief is hope, and it's not necessary the thing with feathers, as much as the trust that in the darkest night that there will be a dawn... Every day is a journey from darkness to light into darkness to light... This is the most basic rhythm of our human existence.

In the darkness is where we find our deepest fears - the most primal sense of 'What if the sun died in the night? What if daylight never again breaks?' - the fear that all I hold most dear is indeed lost... As Meister Eckhart realized, we all live under the umbra nihili, the shadow of nothingness, and as the clinically depressed know too well, it can be a crushing, heavy shadow...

Yet, it is holding, and owning, those fears, sitting with them, that eventually faith and hope are born...
We have to go deeper into that emptiness,
then we will find beneath nothingness
the flame of love waiting to warm us.
John O'Donohue, Anam Cara, p. 33

And it's the nature of that love that shapes us...

as children it's the love of our parents - or lack of it - that gives us hope - or despair... 
as we grow up, it's the love of friends - or lack of it - that gives us meaning - or emptiness...
as adults it's the love of lovers/partners - or lack of it - that gives us stability - or fickleness...
and throughout our lives it's the love of self - or lack of it - that puts us in touch with the Other, be it human or divine - or leaves us doubting there is any such thing as love...

Love allows understanding to dawn,
and understanding is precious.
Where you are understood, you are at home.
John O'Donohue, Anam Cara, p. 36

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Post 2

Sweet Darkness

When your eyes are tired
the world is tired also.

When your vision has gone
no part of the world can find you.

Time to go into the dark
where the night has eyes
to recognize its own.

There you can be sure
you are not beyond love.

The dark will be your womb

The night will give you a horizon
further than you can see.

You must learn one thing:
the world was made to be free in.

Give up all the other worlds
except the one to which you belong.

Sometimes it takes darkness and the sweet
confinement of your aloneness
to learn

anything or anyone
that does not bring you alive

is too small for you.

~ David Whyte ~

(House of Belonging)

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Post 1

I guess it's about time a trained theologian and former Anglican Reader attempted to put into words what she thinks 'GOD' means...

Why it's this day rather than any other, I have no idea...
All I know is, coming across this quote by Meister Eckhart today, prompted a response, a calling, a yearning to try and articulate what I think, feel, experience each day...
I am a spiritual person, and I have always been what is often called 'a sensitive child'. I feel things deeply, and often acutely, and always have. I jump at loud noises, I am aware of people's moods when I enter a room, and yes, I cry easily - whether in joy or sadness - at images, at music, at books...
This dimension of my person has expanded since suffering a serious stroke almost 4 years ago, when I was barely 43, and I'm aware I haven't processed this expansion - I've been simply experiencing it...
And I'm thinking this blog will be the place to unpack it, to unwrap each element, each concept, each thought, each experience, and hold it up to the light... not to critique it, and certainly not to belittle or judge it, but rather to examine it closely, minutely, to name it maybe, and certainly to own it...
So today, rather than any other day, I, Claire, am taking leave of God, and tentatively moving towards GOD...