Skip to content

Posts tagged ‘Contemplation’

The Numinous

“Great is the man who has not lost his childlike heart.”― Mencius

“In fact I think I prefer a strange tangle of both, an idea with porous boundaries that keeps me guessing. We are not offered any definite conclusions, only the continuing quest. Certainties harden us, and eventually we come to defend them as if the world can’t contain a multiplicity of views. We are better off staying soft. It gives us room to grow and absorb, to make space for all the other glorious notions that will keep coming at us across a lifetime.”― Katherine May, Enchantment: Awakening Wonder in an Anxious Age

Still point
Of our own conjuring
Wander here often.
Weave awe into each day.

“I think I’m beginning to understand that the quest is the point. Our sense of enchantment is not triggered only by grand things; the sublime is note hiding in distant landscapes. The awe-inspiring, the numinous, is all around us, all the time. It is transformed by our deliberate attention. It becomes valuable when we value it. It becomes meaningful when we invest in meaning. The magic is of our own conjuring. ”― Katherine May, Enchantment: Awakening Wonder in an Anxious Age

Sunday Slow

“Poetry is truth in its Sunday clothes.” – Philibert Joseph Roux

“Sunday is the golden clasp that binds together the volume of the week.” – Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

Sunday slow.
Enter the flow.
Do not wait too long.
Do not go too fast.
Find the rhythm and ease.
The music of a new day.
Sacred ground.
Welcome all that comes your way.
Sunday and each day.

“Sometimes I have loved the peacefulness of an ordinary Sunday. It is like standing in a newly planted garden after a warm rain. You can feel the silent and invisible life.” – Marilynne Robinson

In All Things

“There is the music of Heaven in all things.”― Hildegard of Bingen

“Glance at the sun. See the moon and the stars. Gaze at the beauty of the Earth’s greenings. Now, think.”― Hildegard von Bingen


The sun.
The moon.
The stars.
Pink flowers, all flowers.
Music in all things.
When we listen with our soul.
See with our heart.
Love with no conditions.

“The soul is the greening life force of the flesh, for the body grows and prospers through her, just as the earth becomes fruitful when it is moistened. The soul humidifies the body so it does not dry out, just like the rain which soaks into the earth.”― Hildegarde of Bingen

Grounded and Reaching

“Ah, but a man’s reach should exceed his grasp, Or what’s a heaven for?” – Robert Browning

“That we ought not to be weary of doing little things for the love of God, who regards not the greatness of the work, but the love with which it is performed.”― Brother Lawrence, The Practice of the Presence of God

In struggles and ease.
The blending of both.
In all the in between.
Earth and sky.
Grounded and reaching.
Allow joy in.
Moments of bliss woven through the weight of being.
Rest too.
Imagination a must.
Look up and around.
Out and within.
Expanse and immensity.
Eyes on today, glancing at the road ahead, not behind.
A step at a time.
Breath in and out.
Give and take, give more.
Be present to it all.
Absorb light, cast it back out.

“Blessed are those who give without remembering and take without forgetting.” – Elizabeth Bibesco

The Useful Thing

“To do the useful thing, to say the courageous thing, to contemplate the beautiful thing: that is enough for one man’s life.”― T.S. Eliot, The Use of Poetry and the Use of Criticism

“Footfalls echo in the memory, down the passage we did not take, towards the door we never opened, into the rose garden.”― T.S. Eliot, Four Quartets

There are still passages to take, doors to open, flowers to gaze upon.
Learn from regrets but don’t keep carrying them, missing the present.
Beginnings, endings, seasons, cycles, circles.
Time is passing.
Do not waste it.
Be present in today alone and do the work.
Play, delight, find joy in the ordinary moments before you.
Do the useful thing.

“What we call the beginning is often the end. And to make an end is to make a beginning. The end is where we start from.”― T.S. Eliot

Off Course, Rerouting

“The act of meditation is being spacious.”― Sogyal Rinpoche

“Welcome the life that takes you off course. A plan derailed, a life surrendered, a broken bondage”― Rebekah Lyons

Plans change, never happen, go in a different direction.
Lean in. Move through. Keep going.
You never know what is just around the corner.
Create space and margins for new places.
Ever unfolding and becoming.
Make new plans.
Keep dreaming.
Taking action, expend effort.
Accepting different endings.
Always beginning again and again.

“Act, and God will act.” – Joan of Arc

Rhythms of Rest

“God’s creation is a life-giving inhale for all of us, and Sabbath is the exhale.”― Shelly Miller, Rhythms of Rest: Finding the Spirit of Sabbath in a Busy World

“A life built upon Sabbath is contented because in rhythms of rest we discover our time is full of the holiness of God.”― Shelly Miller, Rhythms of Rest: Finding the Spirit of Sabbath in a Busy World

Put down busy for one day.
Whether the traditional Sabbath of Saturday or Sunday, pause, rest, take an extended break.
Weave breaks through each day too, however brief, to carry forward.
In the slowing, we see what is actually before us, the full picture not mere struggle and ordinary.
The beauty, blessings, joy, awe, wonder, peace, delight, play.
In the slowing, we hear what’s in us.
A soft whisper guiding, holding, reassuring.
In the slowing, we enter ebb and flow, rhythm and current.
Holy. Sacred. Wide-open spaces.

“Rest provides fine-tuning for hearing God’s messages amidst the static of life.”― Shelly Miller, Rhythms of Rest: Finding the Spirit of Sabbath in a Busy World

Transcend to Understand

“Why, when God’s world is so big, did you fall asleep in a prison of all places?”— Rumi

“There are too many people in the world today who decide to live disappointed rather than risk feeling disappointment. This can take the shape of numbing, foreboding joy, being cynical or critical, or just never really fully engaging.”― Brené Brown, Atlas of the Heart: Mapping Meaningful Connection and the Language of Human Experience

Allow feelings to come, go and pass as they will.
Feel, do not deny.
A full spectrum of emotions without numbing.
Witness them flowing through and by.
The control is not in stopping feelings or circumstances, but not becoming them.
Pause, create space and distance to respond rather than react.
Off autopilot, awake and aware.
In the world, not of the world.
Step back, breathe, transcend, if but only for a few minutes of clarity, of reset.
Accept grace, love, light and a peace that passes all understanding.

“Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.” – Philippians 4:6-8

Travel Well

“There’s a lot of difference between listening and hearing.”― G.K. Chesterton

“Life isn’t about finding yourself. Life is about creating yourself.” – George Bernard Shaw

Explore and wander
Paint, write, compose
Blank canvas each day
Try, experiment, do
Not divided listening but rapt hearing
Clarity found in steps taken, not in certain knowing
The journey is the call to answer
Travel well.

“We come to know the will of God as a life calling through experience itself. We discover what our calling is in the same way an artist paints on a canvas or a person falls in love. We learn by trying, by experimenting, by doing. Our calling is inseparable from the journey. In one sense, it is the journey.”― Jerry Sittser, The Will of God as a Way of Life: How to Make Every Decision with Peace and Confidence

A Listening, One Inch at a Time

“And the world cannot be discovered by a journey of miles, no matter how long, but only by a spiritual journey, a journey of one inch, very arduous and humbling and joyful, by which we arrive at the ground at our own feet, and learn to be at home.”― Wendell Berry, The Unforeseen Wilderness: Kentucky’s Red River Gorge

“A LISTENING: Going through Lent is a listening. When we listen to the word, we hear where we are so blatantly unliving. If we listen to the word, and hallow it into our lives, we hear how we can so abundantly live again.” – Ann Weems, Kneeling in Jerusalem

Listening and hearing.
Watching and seeing.
Witnessing and awe.
A journey rather than race.
Being over doing.
Sabbath. Lent. Dailyness. Sacred.
Baffled to employment of the mind.
To wonder, wander, seek, ponder.
An essay not a math problem to be solved.
A question to be lived, often unanswered, the seeking continues.
Abundantly living each day, again and again.
One inch at a time.
What will this day reveal to you?

“It may be that when we no longer know what to do,
we have come to our real work
and when we no longer know which way to go,
we have begun our real journey.

The mind that is not baffled is not employed.
The impeded stream is the one that sings.”― Wendell Berry

%d bloggers like this: