Month: March 2014

when words fail me

“No One”

I just want you close
Where you can stay forever
You can be sure
That it will only get better

You and me together
Through the days and nights
I don’t worry ’cause
Everything’s going to be alright
People keep talking they can say what they like
But all I know is everything’s going to be alright

No one, no one, no one
Can get in the way of what I’m feeling
No one, no one, no one
Can get in the way of what I feel for you, you, you
Can get in the way of what I feel for you

When the rain is pouring down
And my heart is hurting
You will always be around
This I know for certain

You and me together
Through the days and nights
I don’t worry ’cause
Everything’s going to be alright
People keep talking they can say what they like
But all I know is everything’s going to be alright

No one, no one, no one
Can get in the way of what I’m feeling
No one, no one, no one
Can get in the way of what I feel for you, you, you
Can get in the way of what I feel

I know some people search the world
To find something like what we have
I know people will try, try to divide, something so real
So till the end of time I’m telling you there ain’t no one

No one, no one
Can get in the way of what I’m feeling
No one, no one, no one
Can get in the way of what I feel for you

Oh oh oh oh oh oh oh oh oh oh oh oh oh oh oh oh [x2]

 

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-oyAuockfZQ

Autumnal Saturday in lent

You can’t feel deprived in Lent, my  purple and white plectranthus bushes out in heraldic flower,  wild lilies blooming in anticipation of winter rains, farmer’s market stalls heaped with  white pumpkins, red-skinned sweet potatoes, butternuts, thick  creamy white and green leeks, hard green  gem squash. Mushrooms in  pine or oak forests on mountain slopes, days of hot sunshine and cool evenings, outings to pick olives or  search in fallen leaves for pecan nuts.

Abundance is what nature and  life  has to offer and what we  surrender or give up is really so small.

Going boldly into Lent

A friend called and said she had found a lump under her arm. Carelessly, to deflect her from  her own worst thinking, the kind of  black hole into which we are all prone to tumble, I said: ‘I’ll  launch into  all those  impenetrable  Catholic  prayers found in the Racolta and litanies of obscure saints, that’ll  sort this out.’ She laughed, nervously. Nothing much else to be said.

She went off to see  specialists, have  tests and wait for results, I sat and prayed hard, stumbling over prayers,  distracted, bored,  worrying, unconfident, bumbling, reciting by rote, airless, dull,  persisting.

And  the lump  was  found to be a harmless cyst. She is convinced the prayers worked. I  believe prayers ‘work’ but often not in ways we are  able to grasp.

First Sunday in Lent

First Sunday in Lent. From the reading in 1Thessalonians:

‘…we urge you and appeal to you in the Lord Jesus to make more and more progress in the kind of life that you are meant to live: the life that God wants, as you learned from us, and as you are already living it.’

Sense of  circling and returning in a cycle rather than any kind of linear progression. But  circling down, something going deeper.

 

 

circular labyrinth

The mouth of a labyrinth

 

 

“The beauty of the world is the mouth of a labyrinth. The unwary individual who on entering takes a few steps is soon unable to find the opening. Worn out, with nothing to eat or drink, in the dark, separated from his dear ones, and from everything he loves and is accustomed to, he walks on without knowing anything or hoping anything, incapable even of discovering whether he is really going forward or merely turning round on the same spot. But this affliction is as nothing compared with the danger threatening him. For if he does not lose courage, if he goes on walking, it is absolutely certain that he will finally arrive at the center of the labyrinth. And there God is waiting to eat him. Later he will go out again, but he will be changed, he will have become different, after being eaten and digested by God. Afterward he will stay near the entrance so that he can gently push all those who come near into the opening.”
Simone Weil, Waiting for God

Going into Lent

Ash Wednesday grey with heat, dust blowing in the streets, a gritty wind. As always, I go back to the  deeper understandings of fasting and  yearning for metanoia, for a more whole-hearted commitment to God:

To treat of fasting and of what is required to fast well, we must, at the start, understand that of itself fasting is not a virtue. The good and the bad, as well as Christians and pagans, observe it. The ancient philosophers observed it and recommended it. They were not virtuous for that reason, nor did they practice virtue in fasting. Oh, no, fasting is a virtue only when it is accompanied by conditions which render it pleasing to God. Thus it happens that it profits some and not others, because it is not undertaken by all in the same manner… We know very well that it is not enough to fast exteriorly if we do not also fast interiorly and if we do not accompany the fast of the body with that of the spirit…

We must fast with our whole heart, that is to say, willingly, wholeheartedly, universally and entirely. If I recount to you St. Bernard’s words regarding fasting, you will know not only why it is instituted but also how it ought to be kept.

He says that fasting was instituted by Our Lord as a remedy for our mouth, for our gourmandizing, and for our gluttony. Since sin entered the world through the mouth, the mouth must do penance by being deprived of foods prohibited and forbidden by the Church, abstaining from them for the space of forty days. But this glorious saint adds that, as it is not our mouth alone which has sinned, but also all our other senses, our fast must be general and entire, that is, all the members of our body must fast. For if we have offended God through the eyes, through the ears, through the tongue, and through our other senses, why should we not make them fast as well? And not only must we make the bodily senses fast, but also the soul’s powers and passions — yes, even the understanding, the memory, and the will, since we have sinned through both body and spirit.

Ash Wednesday, 1622

 

Moved by a great article on enclosed religious in the New Yorker:

A few felt called to the religious life at an earlier age. “I have the exact day that it started,” Sister Maria Deo Gratias of the Most Blessed Sacrament said. “it was a Friday afternoon at a quarter to three.” At precisely that time, when her sixth-grade peers were checking their answers on a spelling test, she felt the desire to go to church. After she went to Mass, the desire grew and grew; a few years later, she told her mother that she wanted to become a nun. It didn’t matter that she didn’t like wearing dresses (she sensed that the habit would be a bit different) or that she loved sleeping in (she was sure that she could get used to rising early). Even though her relatives bet against her following through on the impulse, by age fourteen she had left home for an aspirature, a boarding school for those interested in a religious vocation.

What does it mean to be called to the religious life? Even the most articulate of these women cannot find the precise words to explain how she came to understand her vocation. The youngest nun says, “I’m sure anyone who falls in love, they look back and say, ‘Oh, remember how we met? Or he showed his love?’ It’s the same, how God has shown his personal love.”