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Summer Solstice.



This Wednesday is the Summer Solstice, the longest day and shortest night in the Northern Hemisphere. This day, and season, has been important across many eras and cultures often celebrated with rituals and festivities. It can provide a chance to honor and appreciate brother sun, as St. Francis of Assisi has lovingly called the sun, and the summer season (or winter for those of you in the Southern Hemisphere). I encourage you to step outside for a few minutes to acknowledge and thank brother sun for the light to see by, the nourishment offered to all sentient beings, the emanating warmth, and the essential role brother son takes in the flow and rhythm of life. You may even feel drawn to move your body in some way to show your honor to brother sun such as, through a bow or raising of hands or whatever your body wants to do. At the Sacred Movements Intensive I have been at for the past 9 days, we ended the afternoon with a sacred gestures called Hymn to the Sun and I felt within myself a deep gratitude for brother sun whom I can so easily take for granted. I could also sense a deep connectedness outside of time in remembering that brother sun is who every one of us has some connection to no matter where we live and has been tending to mother earth and our ancestors since the beginning of existence. Thank you brother sun.

Peace and every good,

Heather

 

From the Daily Contemplative Pauses

Monday, June 12th with Joy

WHY DOES NOT THE CHURCH TELL YOU?

At last the time came for the bride to be with Him.

Nothing all the other brides had ever known could have prepared me.

Only the beauty and light you cannot describe has a place in His house.

I can touch God- -yes- but not with anything I own,

not with anything I can identify with,

not with anything that knows me.

Purity, have you ever contemplated that word?

I once beheld the root of the Immaculate and it drew me into itself,

I looked at all through

His eyes.

Why does not my sacred church tell you:

God only sees

Himself.

― St. John of the Cross, as translated by Daniel Ladinsky

Tuesday, June 13th with Tom

“Start Close In”

Start close in, don’t take the second step or the third, start with the first thing close in, the step you don’t want to take.

Start with the ground you know, the pale ground beneath your feet, your own way to begin the conversation.

Start with your own question, give up on other people’s questions, don’t let them smother something simple.

To hear another’s voice, follow your own voice, wait until that voice

becomes an intimate private ear that can really listen to another.

Start right now take a small step you can call your own don’t follow someone else’s heroics, be humble and focused, start close in, don’t mistake that other for your own.

Start close in, don’t take the second step or the third, start with the first thing close in, the step you don’t want to take.

― David Whyte

Wednesday, June 14th with Tom

“There is a special quality of stillness in a person who encounters their shadow wholeheartedly. Your body may relax in their company because it understands, in the subtle communications of their presence, that nothing is excluded in themselves, or you, from belonging. Such a person, who has given up guarding against the shadow, who has come to wear their scars with dignity, no longer squirms from discomfort or bristles at suffering. They no longer brace in avoidance of conflict. They carry a deep willingness to dance with the inconstancy of life. They’ve given up distancing as a strategy, and made vulnerability their ally.”

“Because we often think of vulnerability as a negative trait which leaves us exposed to harm, I thought we could do with a new word which acknowledges its power: vulnerabravery. Instead of putting up our defenses when we meet with conflict, vulnerabravery is the conscious choice to keep our heart open so that we might discover what's hidden within it. It is a great paradox that when we let ourselves be undefended we find our true strength.”

Belonging... Remembering Ourselves Home, Toko-pa Turner p. 124

Thursday, June 15th with Tom

“We read Eckhart at that level. I think one way that it touches people is we get so caught up in the demands of the day. We’re being carried along by the momentum of the day’s demands. We have this feeling that we’re skimming over the surface of the depths of our own life, like we’re suering from depth deprivation. We also sense that God’s unexplainable oneness with us is hidden in the depths over which we’re skimming. So, the whole idea, can I slow down enough to catch up with myself or slow down enough to be present to myself, and that requires a certain intimate quality of detachment, see. I have to look at the idolatries or the thing. How can I set aside a rendezvous, a daily rendezvous with God and then habituate it through the day to knot absolute ties, the passing contingencies of impressions and so on, and sink the taproot of my heart into a deeper place.”

interview with Matthew Fox and James Finley on Turning to the Mystics

Friday, June 16th with Tom

BACKPAIN

Muhammad went to visit a sick friend. Such kindness brings more kindness, and there is no knowing the proliferation from there.

The man was about to die. Muhammad put his face close and kissed him.

His friend began to revive. Muhammad's visit re-created him. He began to feel grateful for an illness that brought such light.

And also for the backpain that wakes him in the night.

No need to snore away like a buffalo when this wonder is walking the world.

There are values in pain that are difficult to see without the presence of a guest.

Don't complain about autumn. Walk with grief like a good friend. Listen to what he says.

Sometimes the cold and dark of a cave give the opening we most want.

— Rumi

Saturday, June 17th with Lacey

The Yes of Your Word

Let me learn to weave of the threads of my life

a fabric soft and warm and colorful enough

To wrap me with love as I long to be, and let me

find the courage to know that who I am

gives life to the always now and ever here of love,

And let me believe that is it enough to let the Yes

of Your Word rise to bursting life in me.

— Meister Eckhart

Sunday, June 18th with Tom

Have you seen how a horse,

on a summer's afternoon

in a wide green meadow,

gallops and dances and springs

about in the sun and wind?

This is just how God delights

in pouring himself into you.

Just like this!

Meister Eckhart's Book of Secrets, Mark Burrows and Jon Sweeney, p. 159


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