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Four postures as holding our post.

So far this Eastertide, we have been focusing on four different postures (see below for links) we can learn to inhabit with the help and support of Jesus/Yeshua and Mary Magdalene, our Living Teachers. These postures require us to live beyond the confines of this world's ways of being and are manners in which we can hold our post. Inherent within them is a shift in where we see from and how we see which guides us as we exist, move and act in the world. The gravitas of this different way of seeing, existing, moving, and acting cannot be overstated as we carry on standing in front of what makes up our lives at this particular moment in time. One example being that tomorrow, here in the United States, marks the End of the Federal COVID-19 Public Health Emergency Declaration (PHE). Although the intensity of cases and effects of the virus have decreased, and life for many people has returned to some semblance of normalcy, we are still recovering from and digesting these three years. It would do us well to remember that we, as an interconnected web of greatly differentiated and joined life, have been through something incredibly big. And not only that, but the baseline intensity of being alive at this time seems to has been raised, the pace has quickened, technology continues to evolve rapidly exposing us to much more than we are used to, and our nervous systems can't quite grow their thresholds for regulation/digesting activation as fast as our surroundings seem to be requiring. Collectively we are still trying to find our feet and process all of the losses, changes, and causes for celebration that have transpired in this unfamiliar territory of a pandemic (not unfamiliar to humans throughout time, but to the majority of people living now). It would also do us well to recognize that although the COVID-19 PHE is considered over, the Public Mental Health Crisis Emergency on the rise is nowhere near so. Many are struggling every moment not to fall into despair, hopelessness, and complete lack of trust in something more. As contemplatives and mystics on this wisdom path, we are needed now. We draw from ever replenishing spiritual nourishment and resources beyond this world which allow us to keep embodying these postures as ways we can hold our post in the world. We have been training and preparing to hold our post. We can through a wholeness, which includes fragmentedness, allow and negotiate the seeming opposites. . . that our human nature is both incredibly fragile and terrified of death, just as we are astoundingly hardy and adaptable. . . that our spiritual nature is aware of and sensitive to the pain and suffering of all, just as it is even more sturdy and capable of being a tremendous source of stability in the midst of that pain and suffering within and all around. The essential nature of these postures is ongoing. Perhaps we can all pause, take seriously our post (while not taking ourselves too seriously), and assess how we might continue to learn to embody these postures not only for our and other human selves, but for our ancestors, those to come, and for the entire more than human natural world. Who knows, we might even be able to do this with lightness of being and fun! Holding post together, Heather The four postures can be found here: First posture: being grounded and rooted in our two realities Second posture: standing firm in our center, not bending Third posture: wielding a spiritual fruit or substance, bringing it forth as a force Fourth posture: singleness, the undivided fully human being


From a few of the Pauses : Monday with Heather “The secret of my identity is hidden in the love and mercy of God. But whatever is in God is really identical with [God], for [God’s] infinite simplicity admits no division and no distinction. Therefore I cannot hope to find myself anywhere except in [God]. Ultimately, the only way I can be myself is to become identified with [God] in Whom is hidden the reason and the fulfillment of my existence. Therefore there is only one problem on which all my existence, my peace and my happiness depend: to discover myself in discovering God. If I find [God], I will find myself and if I find my true self, I will find [God].” — Thomas Merton Tuesday with Heather “Brilliant and gorgeous day. Bright sun. Breeze making all the leaves and high brown grasses shine, singing of the wind and the cedars. Exultant day in which even a puddle in the pig lot shines like precious silver. Finally, I’m coming to the conclusion that my highest ambition is to be what I already am, that I will never fulfill my obligation to surpass myself unless I first accept myself. And if I accept myself fully in the right way, I will already have surpassed myself. Whereas the unaccepted self that stands in my way and will continue to do so as long as it is not accepted, when it has been accepted, it will be my own stepping stone to what is above me because this is the way [human] has been made by God. Original sin was the effort to surpass oneself by being like God, that is unlike oneself, but in our godliness, we are at home.” — Thomas Merton Wednesday with Heather “Work with “Place me like a seal upon your heart. There is no fear in love, but perfect love casts out fear.” How do we perfect this love so that we become fearless, which doesn’t necessarily mean that we have no more fears, but fear doesn’t hold us back from love, perfect love casts out fear.” — Cynthia Bourgeault Thursday with Catherine “Once, I lived on the tarred, lonely highways of truth―slugging towards the looming horizons―the promised dwelling places for those who did not waver. The whole world was about being either right or wrong. I was either lost or found. That was many years ago though. Today, when I meet people, I recognize how utterly beyond right and wrong they are―how their lives are symphonies beyond orchestration, how their mistakes and failings are actually cosmic explorations on a scale grander and of a texture softer than our most dedicated rule-books could possibly account for. You see, something happened on my way―and I lost my coordinates, my map, my directives. Now the whole journey is the destination―and each point, each barren point, just as noble as the final dot. Every splotch of ink is become to me a fresco of wisdom, a beehive of honey, a lovely place―and every aching voice a heavenly choir. The world is no longer desolate and empty and exclusive; she is now a wispy spirit, whose fingers flirt through the wind―a million roads where only one once lay. And I need not be certain about the road travelled―since I arrived the self-same moment I set out.” — Bayo Akomalafe Friday with Heather “[St. John of the Cross might say] hope, when it comes to birth, is not just a confidence that there is a future for us; it’s also a confidence that there’s a continuity such that the future is related to the same truth and living reality as the past and the present. Hope, like faith, is hope in relation; relation to that which does not go away and abandon, relation to a reality that knows and sees and holds who we are and have been. You have an identity not because you have invented one. . . but because you have a witness of who you are. What you don’t understand or see, the bits of yourself you can’t pull together in a convincing story, are all held in a single gaze of love. You don’t have to work out and finalize who you are, and have been; you don’t have to settle the absolute truth of your history of story. In the eyes of the presence that never goes away, all that you have been and are is still present and real; it is held together in that unifying gaze. . . it’s put much more vividly and personally in an extraordinary poem by Dietrich Bonhoeffer, the great German theologian and martyr, when he was in prison for his share in the plot to assassinate Adolf Hitler. . . Bonhoeffer writes, ‘They often tell me / I would step from my cell’s confinement / calmly, cheerfully, firmly, / like a squire from his country-house’ (Bonhoeffer was a man of rather aristocratic background and bearing). But the poem is about the great gulf between what ‘they’ see—a confident, adult, rational, prayerful, faithful, courageous person—and what he knows is going on inside: the weakness and the loss and the inner whimpering and dread. ‘So which is me?’ Bonhoeffer asks. Is it the person they see, or the person I know when I’m on my own with myself? And his answer is surprising and blunt: I haven’t got a clue; God has got to settle that. I don’t have to decide if I’m really brave or really cowardly, whether I’m really confident or really frightened, or both. Who I am is in the hands of God. And that, I would say, is the hope that St. John of the Cross might be talking about. It goes beyond the assumption that I am only what I see or know. It tells me that I am more than I realize, in the eyes of God, for good or ill. It tells me to hope in ‘what is unseen’ (a good biblical phrase), in the one who doesn’t need to be told about how human beings work because he knows the human heart (John 2:25).” — Rowan Williams, Being Disciples, p.29-30 Saturday with Heather “Yeshua says... . . . For no one lights a lamp and then hides it away. It is placed on a lamp-stand instead where those who pass by may see by its light. ” — Logion 33, The Gospel of Thomas


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