Even St. Patrick's Day has become merely and delightfully March 17th. Penny Whistle on WERU.FM and traditional Irish melodies on Pandora following morning practice in bookshed/retreat. Incense in streams of sunlight kept low across room, like crawling escapee from burning reminder we are being transformed as we remain still and silent in the presence of what-is-here.
I expected to see only pink blossoms,Yesterday's steady rain gives way to today's sunny breeze and warming air.
But a gentle spring snow has fallen
And the cherry trees are wearing a white coat.
- Ryokan (1758-1831)
We'll go to breakfast, walk dogs, bail peapod, and breath the day with gratitude for just this morning, this day, this meditation.
Watched part two of Mythos with the incisive words of Joseph Campbell at Friday Evening Conversation. He brings "feeding the fire" right into the front room, as did Dean, pizza. It is communion, relational transforming elemental interpenetrating communion, we seek. Of course there is only communion.
A new understanding is afoot. Some receive communion with worthy gratitude. Some ignore it with unworthy disregard and disrespect. But there is, always and only, communion.
Churches and religion do not own communion. They do, at times, attempt to help us see and understand it according to their lights. But our task is to own communion according to our lights. In older days someone would ask church relatedly, "Did you receive communion today?" These days, the chickadee and yellow finch look over at us and invite us into communion. We either give and receive communion -- presence, participation, and particular realization of our interconnection -- or we remain not yet aware of our true nature of unified non-separate interpenetrating with all that is.
I Ask YouThe words are helpful, only, they should not have been appropriated so exclusively: "This is my body!"
What scene would I want to be enveloped in
more than this one,
an ordinary night at the kitchen table,
floral wallpaper pressing in,
white cabinets full of glass,
the telephone silent,
a pen tilted back in my hand?
It gives me time to think
about all that is going on outside--
leaves gathering in corners,
lichen greening the high grey rocks,
while over the dunes the world sails on,
huge, ocean-going, history bubbling in its wake.
But beyond this table
there is nothing that I need,
not even a job that would allow me to row to work,
or a coffee-colored Aston Martin DB4
with cracked green leather seats.
No, it's all here,
the clear ovals of a glass of water,
a small crate of oranges, a book on Stalin,
not to mention the odd snarling fish
in a frame on the wall,
and the way these three candles--
each a different height--
are singing in perfect harmony.
So forgive me
if I lower my head now and listen
to the short bass candle as he takes a solo
while my heart
thrums under my shirt--
frog at the edge of a pond--
and my thoughts fly off to a province
made of one enormous sky
and about a million empty branches.
(Poem by Billy Collins)
Can you feel it?
Can you take it?
Will fear flee?
Yes, to all the questions. We will feel our singular and distinctive body. We will take what is given with gratitude and respect. We will present our fragile reluctance to the open and loving spirit of wholesome benevolence and compassion without fear for what follows.
Today is St. Paddy's Day.
Take the high road, take the low road. Arrive at the sunny, Bonnie Banks o' Loch Lomond.
We people and wee people all together!