January 23, 2010

The Times in Our Lives

The Prayer of Saint Francis
Lyrics by Sarah Mclachlan and 
various others, especially Saint Francis of Assisi 
 Lord make me an instrument of your peace
Where there is hatred let me sow love.
Where there is injury, pardon.
Where there is doubt, faith.
Where there is despair, hope.
Where there is darkness, light.
And where there is sadness, joy.
O divine master grant that I may
not so much seek to be consoled as to console;
to be understood as to understand;
To be loved as to love
For it is in giving that we receive-
it is in pardoning that we are pardoned.
And it's in dying that we are born to eternal life.

There are times in our lives when we realize that a 'one size fits all,' whether we are One or not, just isn't fitting. Ultimately, despite our human communities, each of us, created with a bit of the divine spark, also receives a bit like no other, and it is to this, as well as to the divine, we pay our respects. All creatures of the earth, great and small are given a life to live as is fitting to their species; yet man is given a mind unknown in any of the others. He thinks, posits, conceives, constructs and destructs, all within his own mind. We think first to ourselves before we do to any other.

In this world, all living under a great blue sky, swirling around us, are great movements, movements of mind if you will. Some of these movements have posited that man, in particular, is to lead a sort of 'zero sum life,' taking no more at his leaving than at his entrance to the world. Persons of this thinking suppose that it is the species, man, which wrecks or destroys for all other species, thus it behooves us to engage in this zero sum prospect, sometimes referred to in terms of "carbon footprints" or "green movements". They betray little confidence in the living, breathing, earth herself.

True we, as the creatures of earth and sky, mankind, is bound to observe the earth, its natural seasons and rhythms, to engage in stewardship, care-taking of all life. Earth is sustenance; it is the air we breath and the food we eat. Our entrance and exit are without any parallel timing. It all seems so random. Leave it then to men with intellect to devise a wholly rational systemology for what may truly be an irrational world. A number which follows no rules. And then to give it our names, our descriptions of what may not be describable. In the Dharmakaya, the great intelligence-mind of the world, we learn that mental forms and rationalizations, clinging to ideas, rather than accepting what we may not be able to make different or influence, leads to grief. Impermanence, we are taught, is the normal course of this world. Pray for impermanence.

In times of grief, of illness, of disaster, of adversity, we are challenged. Our tidy mental machinations may do us no good. As the Bible tells us, we know not the time, or the season that will be ours, when the Master will call. The Master calls for each of us truly to have and take as we need, and not as we want. The demonization of real, true, individual, human needs by the postulants of human carbon, waste and destruction, rob us of what we are given, one and all under the great blue sky.

It is then perhaps more important for each one to learn what those needs are and to serve them, rather than the wants of this world, the powerful of this world, the possessing. When this is done, each person may experience the beauty and blessing of a world, in which as one element in creation, there exists a symphony of the whole. Engage in acts which do no further harm. Tend to the earth as a child. Plant a tree; plant many trees, give way to causes which are filled with the Spirit of Love; eschew the mongers, the haters and those who plan for your doom. They may be, in truth, the evils of our world.

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