Friday, February 16, 2007

la nuit comme le jour est lumière

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"My thoughts cannot comprehend Divinity, and so I prefer to abandon all I can know, choosing rather to love even that which I cannot know.

Let loving desire, gracious and devout, step bravely and joyfully beyond and reach out to pierce the darkness. Yes, beat upon that thick cloud of unknowing with the dart of your loving desire and do not cease come what may."

~The Cloud of Unknowing, ch. 6

Learning a new environment, so as to find the comforts and become aware of the pitfalls, means figuring out the preferable shops and eateries, understanding the local culture, and memorizing the streets and regulations. Hardly a week back into the routine again, my steps are simultaneously measured and bold, though surely borne from strides that have covered ancient and faraway paths. A life that proceeds cannot stand still, even in the glow of communion, and it is for me to cultivate, increase, and give of what I continue to receive.

Today, after too many draining meetings, I smiled to myself as I recalled one of the monks in Taizé gesturing with his hands clasped tightly together, describing to me how the more fiercely we seek the things of God, the stronger the response that comes to us in return. Here are my proving-grounds: the meetings, relationships, material concerns, and the day's extemporaneous situations that cause me to practice what I learn. Will it be a conscious attentiveness, or the old tiresome resistance? With old habits clashing with new consciousness, I am noticing a lot of new "no U-turn" signs on familiar streets. The unknown is preferable to what I have seen not to work, and now looks so much more inviting.

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