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Thursday, December 31, 2009


This is the last day of 2009! When I was a little girl, the 21st century seemed as far away as Flash Gordon. 2010 seemed unimaginable. And here it is. Can you believe it?

What a far different world it is at so many levels than it was in 1940. From there to here is a sort of major jet lag. If anyone could have suggested what 2010 would be like, what technology we would have, what the culture would be like, what the world would be like it would have been far-fetched science fiction to us. And here it is.

I wonder what the next decades will hold in store & what impact each of us can have on making the future a good place. I suppose if a future person could come to us today, our future would also seem like science fiction. Things both dreamed & undreamed of today will be commonplace there.

As we bravely move into another new decade, let us take with us dreams & prayers & actions for goodness, faith, hope, joy, love, peace & all things of God. Let us have the courage to live our values & be true to the highest & best in us. Let us be beacons of love & light. Let's be the positive difference we want to see happen. Let's make it so that the visitor from the future speaks to us of a new world of peace & plenty for all, of a God-centered shift in hearts, words & deeds. If we don't try, there is no way we can arrive in the future we desire. I believe God calls us from deep within our souls. The question is really, will we listen & will we act on the loving whispers?

Monday, December 28, 2009

Thoughts on Logos

In pre-Socratic philosophy, the principle governing the cosmos, the source of this principle, or human reasoning about the cosmos.

In biblical Judaism, the word of God, which itself has creative power and is God's medium of communication with the human race.

Christianity, in Saint John's Gospel, especially in the prologue (1:1-14), the creative word of God, which is itself God and incarnate in Jesus.

Fr. Charles talked about many things yesterday, one of which was "logos." Thoughts about it kept popping into my mind yesterday, off & on through the night, & then this morning. So, I feel I am led to write a little about it.

Logos, this is the Greek word used in John 1:1. Looking at its roots gives some interesting context. The Greeks thought of it as a principle as well as the source of the principle, so since it's their word, we might consider this a moment. The order in & through the universe is amazing, even in chaos there is a certain order. If there were no underlying, guiding principles, all would collide, collapse, be unreliable, be confusing, etc. The coffee table stays a coffee table & does not suddenly turn into a radish. Sure, eventually it will decay & return to earth to be reformed into something else, but this is done in a principled & orderly way. Yes, I agree, in our dimension there is principle & that principle has a Source.

Judaism is important to our understanding here since the people of the Bible are primarily Jewish, including, of course, Jesus & all of his apostles & most of his followers. In this understanding God's Word is creative, in fact creating all that we know in our universe. This idea is established right in the beginning in Genesis. And God speaks to the people, communicates with them/us. We are not far away from God, but so close we can hear God.

John, then, understands this & tells us that this principle, this creative power, this speaking to us is made personal & infused in flesh in the form of Jesus. Now the understanding of the principle behind all, the creative power of God's Word, the speaking to us are no longer limited to prophets, philosophers & to those so attuned they can hear. Now embodied in a man that can be seen, heard, touched by all is the Logos. God becomes available to the masses. Who & what God is, is there for all. We see love, forgiveness, healing, creativity, wisdom, peace, humility, oneness & so much more before our very eyes. God with us in a new & special way opens doors not opened to humans before this time.

It is interesting to me that such an amazing occurrence is now largely ignored. Santa & the Easter bunny seem more important to the world. Facebook & television take more time from us than spiritual inquiry, prayer, meditation & doing good works. I wonder where this secular busyness will take us as a people. I wonder why we go away into the artificial. I wonder........

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Spirituality Is Not In Fashion

It's not cool to be spiritual these days. It's cool to be a consumer, the passive recipient of entertainment or a sort of participant in entertainment like video games. We're not supposed to actually do anything real. It might still be cool to go to church at Christmas & Easter though.

But, to talk about our personal spiritual journey, our hunger for God, our prayers & meditations, our questions, this is not cool. We are not supposed to go quietly into a garden to contemplate & listen. We are not supposed to participate actively in spirituality. The joy I once saw in many faces, has been replaced by a certain blankness. It seems to me that fewer people are awake.

If we go into a garden nowadays it's to prove something is wrong with the environment, or toxic fertilizers impair the food or some bug is there to make it impossible to carry the fruit across town. We are grim.

How did this happen? In the 1950's, everyone I knew went to church. All the kids were part of youth groups in their churches. We didn't do drugs or smoke any kind of cigarettes. There were no video games. There were no seatbelts or bicycle helmets, no computers, but there were a lot of real things to do. We adopted Korean War orphans & rolled bandages for lepers. We helped grow vegetables & fruit in the back yard. We learned to sew & cook & be able to take care of ourselves & others. We were taught to think of others, that the stranger might be an angel or Jesus coming to us to give us the opportunity to do the right thing. We were encouraged to use our spirituality in a positive way. We flexed our spiritual muscle.

I have been a watcher of people since early childhood. We used to go downtown on a Friday night, get an ice cream cone, sit in the car & watch the people walk by. Today, I see less light in eyes, less animation of people's energies, more blankness.

It seems to me that it is time for a spiritual awakening. The question is how to trigger & then sustain it. How to get people back participating in life, caring about others? How to get people out of the hypnosis of having to be entertained?

In some ways, the movie "The Matrix" talks about our times. We're not that far gone yet, but more & more people prefer the artificial to the real.

God, we come to You this day with an ache in our hearts. We yearn for You. We yearn for spiritual awakening for ourselves & others. Show us the way. Open us to capital "R" Reality, out of the illusion of the artificial. Open our eyes. Open our hearts. Open our minds. Open all of our beingness to You. We praise You & rejoice in Your action in our lives. We seal this with the ancient seal of faith, Amen, Amen & Amen

Monday, December 21, 2009

Christmas' Thin Spots

It is Christmas time again. This holiday has so much emotion involved with it from memories of Christmases past to family memories made & to be made, to the spiritual dimension for which it is really about.

It's the 21st today, first day of winter! We've already had our family Christmas. Saturday our children & 4 of our grandchildren gathered to share the day, eat good food, exchange gifts & reminisce. It was truly wonderful. We had a lot of fun & loving conversation. It was all a family gathering should be. I feel blessed. Our eldest son & 3 grandchildren will be flying east to have Christmas with their other grandparents. Our daughter will be with her inlaws. Our youngest son & his wife will be back to spend the actual day with us. That will be lovely. We created good memories for the Christmas of 2009.

Probably the worst Christmas was 1976. My husband, father of my children, had an aneuyrsm of the major artery in his brain. He was talking to me & dropped. He was brain dead. On New Year's 1977, we turned off the machines & he passed on to his next life. Many miraculous things happened around all of that. I'll share that one day.

Since we had our whole family time already, it will be interesting to be free to focus on the deeply spiritual meanings of Christmas. Tonight we are having friends for dinner, & then we are going to a performance of "The Messiah" done in the original way that Handel had it done. We will be attending several other things at church too. We probably would have done all of that anyway. The special freedom of time allows me to spend contemplative time around the miracles & meanings of Christmas.

Sunday, Charles spoke of the times when it is thin between heaven & earth, times when we see or hear from another realm. I have certainly had those times & deeply cherish them. I understand that life is so much more than the obvious. God gave us a view of who & what he is through Jesus. I suppose God also got a view of humanity in a new way too through Jesus. For God, the emmanuel experience must have been interesting. For us, it was key to our awakening. We got a major thin spot between heaven & earth. Some people's view of God is so limited. They create God in their own emotionally stinted, mean-spirited image. Jesus told us that God is love & then proceeded to show us that love & how it works. He encouraged us to be that love too. Perhaps in our sincere, authentic, agape love, we help create a thin spot. Living from that love, we are more deeply in alignment & communion with God. There is less between us, keeping us apart.

This Christmas, the gift we could bring to the Christ Child is that authentic love, opening up a thin spot between us. In the cradle of our hearts we birth the Light of the Christ by our lovingness & our faith. I am going to spend some time contemplating this.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

As a Drop in the Ocean

Pondering my/our relationship with God, I am drawn back to the drop in the ocean analogy. We are the drops. Each drop is pure ocean, but it is not all there is of the ocean. In the beginning God created us, apparently out of Divine Substance because in the beginning there was only God. In our beginning, we were pure Divine Substance, but of course not all of the Divine Substance. We were but tiny droplets, but made by God & of God nevertheless.

But, we don't look or act like God (at least let me speak for myself) all or even a lot of the time, maybe a tiny, tiny bit of the time. So how could we be at one with God, the Ocean, made of It & not be It?

Pollution, ignorance, fear, faithlessness, separation, etc. are some of the possibilities. Today let's look at pollution. Just as the water that is ocean water, identifiable as such, can be polluted, so can we. We get polluted by negativity, fears, evil, bad choices, resentments, cultural biases, misinformation and all manner of ideas & feelings that we ourselves bring into our pure drop of divinity.

I believe that a lot of time needs to be spent in re-purifying the drops that we are. Our society complicates this process by itself being polluted by a wide variety of things. Our society keeps feeding us pollution, & we take it in if we don't have a good spiritual filter. Our "modern" society seems to be going downhill into the muck & mire, away from the Light of God's Presence. I was thinking of the amount of time many people spend with violent/sexual/ugly movies, TV, games, music vs the amount of time spent with spiritual/loving/beautiful movies, TV, games, music, etc. Wow!!!

Just a tiny example comes in the big box office movie right now about vampires, werewolves, etc. The "sweet" high school girl decides she wants to give up her soul in the name of "love" for her vampire boyfriend. Could be a metaphor for what is happening with so many of our youth.

I watch in amazement as our culture seems to disintegrate before my eyes. It is not the culture of the 1950's of my youth. Some of that change is positive, & a great deal of it is NOT. We don't have a spiritual protection agency refining our culture. It seems that everything goes these days. The traditional filters of family & church have stepped into the background, abdicating from their roles. For the most part, we are on our own.

Thankfully, God is Love. God is forgiving. Jesus redeems us. All is not lost. There is a way to re-purify our droplets & reflect more of our true nature, our spiritual essence that is the center of who we are.

Dear God, we turn to You this day & every day. We seek Your guidance & help. Wash away the spiritual pollution we have let into our being & reveal the person You created us to be. Open our eyes, our hearts & our minds to You & the Truth. Lift us out of the confusion of these days into the Light of Your Presence. Lift our world out of the shadows of darkness. Let this be a time of great spiritual awakening. We ask this in Jesus' name & seal this with the ancient seal of faith, Amen, Amen & Amen.