Great chains of Being

Within a recent mindfulness gathering, a sweet young soul said:

‘As I have said before, I have noticed that I spend so much time looking down, full of my own thoughts, anxious, but now I have come to realise that all I need to do is look up and see the immensity of the sky and it all falls back into place and I am somehow calmed.’

And smiling outwardly then, and inwardly in the quiet of now, I touch half awareness’s of ancient wisdom echoing within our most human senses of spiritual drift…..

St Francis (looking at the stars) saying to us ‘if these are the creatures, what must the creator be like?’

Breathing with the writings of Richard Rohr who always Eager To Love expands upon Bonaventure, who riffing in fountains of fullness talks of that flow, that overflow that filling of all things into One positive direction.

Truly being within this Being

Be-hold:
all things in unity
Be-hold all:
contradictions and
coincidences.
let go to
cohere
in here and out to
hear wholesome Heart absorptions
awesome sweet knowings
in place and
Grounded.

clarion call:
clearly to
one and to all
through hard times to
timeless Oneness
and
Love.

Be-calmed with
Sweet Hearted St Clare.
walk
within her
lightness of heart and
firmness of foot
become
strident
and soft to
observe
Cosmic Bright Light.
squint as you
hook to string
Great Chains.
thread
Alpha, Omega and Eco
to systems beyond dots to this I this unstable
ego.

Be free from
fixations
Be
crossed above lines of
sentient living and
re calcification to
re-hang such stories to
Crucified
Wisdom.
pulse in flows of blood staining flesh
broken for dead beats to
Breathe in a-fresh.

If only

we

lonely could

stop running like chickens ruining the rest
fearful of loosing our feather-filled heads.

If ever together we
refilled in grace
yolked well and beyond this darkening place
to find
A Cosmos Grown
now and before

so to rest in-
completeness
ever after deepening in love from Our core.

Notes of thankfulness:

I am, once again immersing within the richness and flow of Richard Rohr’s distillations of Judy Cannato, St Francis, St Clare, Bonaventure and so give heart-felt thanks for and to all the known and unknown ancient and modern spiritual guides that I purposefully and inadvertently absorb plunder and surf within.

Clogged in incompleteness

If I leave

with my heart singed in fear

I step out on a road of hatred and isolation

I seep into rivers of painful recollection

deeply flowing from my neighbours eyes.

I recoil from your sideways glance

build walls to damn your half seen smile

preferring to congeal to the cut of  cynicism

(as if butter wouldn’t melt

upon this cold steak knife I call life)

I break out to escape from all that is other

rip skin from skin to bleed this heart deeply within

a barren disconnecting groan despite

Light dustings of Love.

When I feed on bloodshed and despair

I ooze in unfairness and choke upon

golden feathers that drift gloriously unseen

until sodden they fall into visions

that clog in my indigestible in-

completeness.

And so,  it seems again to me to be, so

hard to consume new limits to

unstitch my well known know how, to choose to

grow fresh green fruit in verdant gardens

to soothe in kindness when soft skin lacerates upon

time starved rocks. How to be

bolder as older I wish to choose to rock more gently this caged

and fleshy brain, swathe me in silence and wait-full-ness,

so I may gleefully greet these ever changing screams

with smiling forgiveness for

ever and ever and once and for all

to release these urgent calls to push, push, push this

river of shit that surges in my own forgetfulness.

How to keep hold of all the goodness that you foretold

the Wisdom that wades in this wonderful wetness

repleting refreshment with Words of encouragement

to this thing that I call soul.

 

 

 

 

 

This shadow skinned in the noon day sun

Jan Van Ruusbroec

 

from your 14th century Espousals, please

oh please, plentifully Arouse all my senses

‘In each and every new filled now,’

as this brow of mine re-touches

Mother Earths starry dust

somehow, let me believe that,

‘God Divine,’ is indeed,

‘born again within the very dark and deep of us.’

 

And when I’m done with all now’s

active nothingness

When I lift the navel of contemplation to resit

re-read, re-phrase, to extrapolate upon

more of your Praise onwards

ever onwards from Paragraph 1528

I wonder what it actually means

‘To annihilate all my free will,’ right now, to

‘Re-ignite my burning love, unfurl

this Heart’ to taste the ‘Spirit Storms’ that press above

and beyond my simple rational consciousness. Breathe

 

Oh,

 

words of Word please Breathe in me.

 

Oh,

 

Holy Spirit, Dharmakaya, Living Buddha, Cosmic Christ

Whoever you are, rise higher and as One,

return the call to gently empty this shell-like Body

this shadow skinned in the noon day sun

and then, if Your will is genuine, hear this

humble mumbled soft request to, begin again,

refill, renew Your ever-present interest in all that

moves this anatomically bereft blood and bone

and void filled chest.

Emerging within this new day

And so, a different approach to curating this moment by moment life. I write in a soft blur that comes while emerging from an ear ringing, heart pumping early morning meditation.

I have been staying at my parents rented flat over the past weekend. This is a pause before the 200 mile journey back to my own home town, a time to spend reflecting on the experience of writing this blog over the past few months. A time to digest the emotional impact if these past three days.

I would love to taste, to express a more inclusive spontaneous and free-flowing life. Something somehow, more precious, right now.

Maybe this blog can help with my aim of opening my heart to whatever  flowers and withers within my vista.

November and December saw me meet an exhaustion of body spirit and mind that  although well masked, drove grey tiredness into the very centre of my bones. I have not written here during this time.

Sitting here on this first day of 2018, with the starlings and woodpigeon calling from the exposed rafters in  the adjacent, half finished buildings, with my parents asleep and relaxed in their bedroom, with the boats rocking gently in the grey-green marina directly outside this second floor flat window, I can sense a peacefulness tinged with the fizz of apprehension and the unknown.

Will they be able to stay here? Will they be separated by dint of ill health and old age creeping upon them at different rates? Will I be able to live up to my mums expectation of being able to sort out the social work assessment and  unravel the financial implications of increasing care needs?

It seems that my dear step dad will, probably, need residential or nursing care quite soon. Yesterday he could walk and hold a knife and fork and was content to spend hours   sleeping lopsidedly in his old leather chair. The day before he was fighting the wonderful, humble and gentle carer as she tried to wash him and change his pad, he was unable to work out how to unlock his knee joints to sit down and had developed a yellowish-blue tinge that seem ominously, unspokenly sad.

And now, with the scorched grass on the distant mud flats beginning to recover from last nights wind driven bonfire, with the plastic corks and purple glitter, with the party hats and burnt out firework casings absorbing the damp still pavements and walkways, I gaze out beyond these floor-to-ceiling triple glazed upvc windows and wonder what this year has in store.

 

Becoming a true city Liver

 

A few days after an urban retreat with fellow South West of England contemplatives, sensitively and gorgeously lead by Cynthia Borgeualt from The States, I am energised again to become a true Liver in this my city of home. To take hold the call to embody all outer and inner complexities, to have a tenderized heart towards the human folly and wastefulness, the clamour and the one-eyed nature that fills our bellies and minds, our gullies and ground with extraneous clutter and junk.

I feel moved to show love for this Bristol urban sprawl, to unravel my arms and cherish the empty crisp packets and KFC bargain buckets, the smiling faces and stress filled waste skidding by, like plucked feathers upon the city’s deep-fried breath.  Affluent effluence, only curbed by pavement edge and the ever-changing boundaries of road works invisibly labouring to still the revolution of rubber on a million VW diesel engines spewing stationary while raging for space to park their precious egos.

I feel ignited again to awaken the collective throbbing generous Heart, to engage in the wild ride of internal contemplation, to dive right into my chest region, to cough up hope to ingest fumes and to seep out goodness’s that I know already somehow flow in the elusive internal sanctifying citadel within.

To be guided by Eckhart as above and Borgeualt and Rohr and rivers from the now, to embody and allow such goodness to melt in and flow out from this sliver of light, this hidden gate. And yet more, to be

‘washed clean in contrition, heart filled, made ready, in longing made worthy,’ (Julian of Norwich Showings, Chap 39).

to fully embrace the onslaught of daily clinging to city centred passions.

To resolve to evolve.

Indeed, to go further, to microscopically, internally begin again and again to slowly grow the becoming’s of a true new Liver in and within these boundaries called home. To quietly sift  through the Avon sea salting rhythmic crest and flow, to raise up and shift asunder, to ingest in unseen, untold, unhinged Bristolian fashions and in such limited human passion to sail deeper, opening softly internal organs to sing and singe within the fire-fuelled South Westerlies.

To fill up inside-out lifetime surges of wantage, unskilled non-frilled wilful wastage and in respite to welcome all upon such purposeful blood, upon and yes despite such and such longstanding chest breath clots of sadness, to wish release-full-ness, to draw You in.

Yes harvest deep to worrisome spleen and moving on to engrain in layering’s of stomach stretch an ardour of floating bloat that slowly creeps through intestine small and largely bubbling in half-digested forms, to boil down and to Transform all this living gnawing grind into a purse perfectly formed and gently divine, honestly held until at such a time that all is well, and all is well and all re-joins this Earth sublime.

 

‘A (wo)man goes upright and the food of the body is sealed in a purse full fair; and when it is time of necessity, it is opened and sealed again in full honesty.’ (Julian of Norwich, Showings, chap 6).

City sirens and seagull cries

‘Oh,

who gives me the wings like the dove when I would fly away and be at rest?’ (Meister Eckhart, Discourse on Eternal Birth)

‘I shall lead my friend into the wilderness and shall speak to her heart. I will return her vineyards and transform the Valley of Trouble into a gateway of hope.’ (Hosea 2 14 & 15)

and so:

Breathe deep I do, this dove grey breeze

ingest the wail and warp and weave

of city sirens and seagull cries

and hurt filled sweat in salt sore eyes.

And pray I do, that You may quell this thirsting woe

this cling to things I think I know

this bursting urge that grips the reins

that tourniquets Your blood in veins

fat furred and hard from my control

of withering heart, and yet and yet

this distanced soul cannot forget

to Breathe out and inwardly once again

trust Love to light the twisted turns through

joy and rage and hope and pain.

‘When we set our intention on love and humility, then, by the power of mercy and grace, we are cleansed and made whole.’ (Julian of Norwich, Showings, chapter 40)