“My understanding of the Great Work ( call in life) began when I was quite young. At the time I was some eleven years old. My family was moving from a more settled part of a small southern town ( in the USA) out to the edge of town where the new house was being built. The house, not yet finished, was situated on a slight incline. Down below was a small creek and there across the creek was a meadow. It was an early afternoon in late May when I first wandered down the incline, crossed the creek, and looked out over the scene. The field was covered with white lilies rising above the thick grass. A magic moment, this experience gave to my life something that seems to explain my thing at a more profound level than almost any other experience I can remember……
Yet as the years pass this moment returns to me, and whenever I think about my basic life attitude and the whole trend of my mind and the causes to which I have given my efforts, I seem to come back to this moment and the impact it has had on my feeling for what is real and worthwhile in life.”
This experience of Thomas Berry might be something that has happened in your life too. The beauty of nature, the magic of a place can change and direct an entire life..A moment of deep connection with the Earth leaves an imprint on our soul that will last a life time. As you take time to connect with nature, just sit quietly and close your eyes. Your let your consciousness drift to a place that is very precious to you. Let all the memories come back…see the place with your inner eyes, smell it, hear the sounds and feel the Earth in that place. Realize that all that happened in that place is still with you. See how this place has become part of the inner landscape of your soul. And allow yourself to be touched again by the power of this place. See the person you have become since that moment and hear Mother Earth speak to you about the deeper dimensions of your relationship to her. See what has come about in your life, perceive it as the gift of this now.
The Aboriginals welcome the guest with the question: “Where is your name written in the Earth?” Where is that place for you and what do you find in that place for your life now? Write about it, visit that place, if it still is there. So many of htese places have been destroyed, cemented, etc. Connect with it in your heart.
“A viable future for the Earth will only happen if we rediscover our place on Earth: not a geographical place, but a place in our heart that is connected with the inner “heart” of the Earth. This was perhaps something I vaguely experienced in that first view in the meadow across the creek” ( Thomas Berry, in ‘The Great Work,” ch.2)
A meditation by Thich Nhat Than, a Vietnamese Buddhist monk and a peace activist. The meditation is taken from his book “Call Me By My True Names: page 197-199. As I do not have access to the original text I have made a free translation of the book in Dutch.
- Here are the roots of a tree. Here is an empty and quiet space. Here is small pillow to sit on. Here is the cool, green grass. Why don’t you sit down here my child?
- Sit upright. Sit with confidence. Sit in peace. Let not your thoughts lift you up into the air. Sit in such a way that you can touch the Earth and be one with her. Might be you smile my child. The Earth will give you her firmness, her peace and her joy.
- By your conscious breathing, your peaceful smile you support the Mudra of grounding.
- There were times that you could not do this so easily. Your sitting on the Earth was like drifting in the air, you who are used to wander in the cycle of life and death, tossed away and absorbed in the ocean of wrong perceptions.
- But the Earth is always patient and all heart. She still is waiting for you, because she waited already for the last trillion of years. She will always welcome you, always green and fresh like that first time because love never says: “this is the last time”. Because the Earth is a living mother. She will wait for you and never give up.
- Return to her, my child. you will be like that tree. The leaves , the branches and the flowers of your soul will be fresh and green once you enter the Mudra of grounding!
I vow solemly that from now on I will see the Earth as my solid foundation, each time when I meditate and sit on the Earth or walk the Earth.
I will touch the Earth and stay with her. I will entrust myself to her..
To be continued…
To know the mystery of Creation in the depth of the our soul.
I am regularly reading the writings of the mediaval mystic Meister Eckhart. I am very surprised by what he is writing and I like to share it with you.
“Travelling on the spiritual path” he says, ” asks for a letting go of all the images and experiences you have of God”. First of all he teaches about the soul. The soul is what a human really is. The soul is a mystery that is as great a mystery as God.
To create heaven and Earth was easy for God, but God really worked hard to create the human soul. Eckhart cannot really find words to express what the soul is. There is something in the soul that is totally hidden from reason and will. God dwells in that place, one with the human in the ground of the soul.
The soul is – the -human-being – of – the- Beginning : the being he was before he existed. The soul is the Word of God who creates as S(he) speaks.
Every human knows in the ground of his being how creation came into existence, how creation meant and knows the dream of God for creation. In that deep place in our soul we find ourselves and the original oneness of all that is. We never will be seperated from this original oneness. Who really descends in the ground of the soul, can comprehend the mystery of creation. When we enter deeply into ourselves we will find the wisdom of Creation.
Meister Eckhart speaks long before we lost our deep connection with the wisdom of creation. Returning to this insight is a reason of great hope for us in this time. The answers, the ways of living through the ecological questions of our time, are deeply embedded in the ground of our soul.
As I reflect on these words, a great joy and confidence comes over me. The not – created part of the soul ( which will stay after our body is no longer) can comprehend the Wisdom of the Beginning in all the life that surrounds us. It makes it very clear that we humans are destined to and born be the care -takers of Creation.