We discover or re-discover ourselves only through our travels and unplanned travel is the most exhilarating experience. Getting lost on the journey and refinding our path again is all part of the bigger journey called life. I truly believe that not all those who wander are lost even though we may think so. But for the ones who are lost, wandering is the only way to find themselves. So each little journey we embark upon and each adventure we take, is a smaller part of the whole – that bigger adventure that becomes us. We are our journey. Eve
“Stop ye travellers as you pass by
As you are now, so once was I
As I am now, soon you shall be –
Prepare yourself to follow me.
To follow you
I am not content —
How do I know which way you went?”
Here are seveal of my recent photos of the Mock Orange. I love taking photos of this flower because of its elegance and sublime beauty, and the way it lends itself to the camera. The pity is the Mock Orange does not last long, along with all other Spring flowers it fades before there’s time to really take enough photos to make a good collection. Here are two of my better photos of this imposing flower from a few weeks ago taken outside in the rain.
Photo ~ Black Iris, Karen Platt’s Blog
“There are moments in our lives that stand still in time while all the frantic hours and years surrounding them have blurred into an obscurity of grayness. One such moment remains vivid in my mind after more than thirty years, a luminescent spot of time, as clear as if it had happened only yesterday. It was in one of those dark, cavern-like vaults of a lecture hall in college where Art History was offered as a slide show, and it was a perfectly ordinary lecture on American artists, clicking through shadowed images of Cubism and Futurism until a huge close-up of an iris glowed from the screen. “Black Iris.” Georgia O’Keeffe. A simple polarity of translucent light petals reaching upward and dark falls cascading downward made the flower look like a cathedral illumined from within. Breath stopped, mind stopped, and I felt myself dissolve into beauty, passing through painted veils of titanium white and dove gray mist, suspended over waves of amethyst, troughs of onyx. It was as if a thread of light flowing through the moment pierced me to the soul, connecting me to a higher realm.
There were no words in my nineteen-year-old mind to describe the epiphany I’d felt; there are no exact words this day. Words attempt to anchor experience, but that place was wordless and ineffable. In that light-filled moment I was changed forever, uplifted with new possibility. When I left class that afternoon, I had a mission in life: to attempt to stir in others that same sense of wonder: I began to study painting.”
–Rebecca Robison, an excerpt from “Through Beauty,” reaching for a harmonious whole, in PARABOLA, Volume 27, No. 3, Fall, 2002, “Grace.”
[The Eternal Father to Catherine:] “Do you know, daughter, who you are and who I am? If you know these two things you will have beatitude within your grasp. You are she who is not, and I AM HE WHO IS.” Raymond of Capua,
Life of Catherine of Siena, 92
CATHERINE OF SIENA
By Jake Murray – (Thank you Jake for the piece and thanks so much for the conversation. Both much appreciated. 🙂
Romantic love is very much a key ingredient here. Again, very linked with Bride – Love Mysticism , John’s Epistle (“God is Love”) and the Song of Songs.I have often thought that it is the women mystics of Christianity who have understood this greater than the men. Christ as the Beloved, the Groom, who is loved with the heart and not just the head is a theme that echoes powerfully through Catherine, Teresa, Mechtild, Marguerite, Hadewijch etc. For Mechtild especially it’s highly somatic & sexual as well as spiritual & emotional. Clare of Assisi uses the ‘kisses me on the mouth’ imagery of the Song of Songs to evoke her sense of divine union…It’s infinitely more powerful than the male mystics because its so immediate, so passionate and so direct. Because its somatic, it become holistic. The heart & body are connected as well as mind and spirit. The only male mystics I know who come close are St John of the Cross and Gerard Manley Hopkins.Perhaps this is why, having trawled my way through the Christian mystics, I’ve tended to find that the women are the most modern and the most direct. In their passionate, sensual, erotic spirituality which is so all-encompassing *everything* is enveloped in the Godhead, everything is made sacred, and the experience is infinitely accessible rather than cold, intellectual and distant. Even the greatest of male mystics – Bonaventure, Eckhart, Palamas – don’t enter the Bridal Chamber like this… It’s still arrived at by abstract thought.Interestingly, the Jewish mystics succeed in this even though they are male perhaps because they introduce the Shekinah. Because to the Kabbalists the aspect most accessible to humanity is feminine, they are able to commune in a similar way… Thus for the Kabbalist and the female Christian mystic union with God is a true consummation…
Catherine Of Siena, has often been quoted as God’s Little Show Off.
“A soul rises up, restless with tremendous desire for God’s honour and the salvation of souls. She has for some time exercised herself in virtue and has become accustomed to dwelling in the cell of self-knowledge in order to know better God’s goodness towards her, since upon knowledge follows love. And loving, she seeks to pursue truth and clothe herself in it.
But there is no way she can savour and be enlightened by this truth as in continual humble prayer, grounded in the knowledge of herself and God. For by such prayer the soul is united with God, following in the footsteps of Christ crucified, and through desire and affection and the union of love he makes of her another himself. So Christ seems to have meant when he said,
“If you will love me and keep my words, I will show myself to you, and you will be one with me and I with you.”
And we find similar words in other places from which we can see it is the truth that by love’s affection the soul becomes another himself.
To make this clearer still, I remember having heard from a certain servant of God that, when she was at prayer, lifted high in spirit, God would not hide from her mind’s eye his love for his servants. No, he would reveal it, saying among other things, “Open your mind’s eye and look within me, and you will see the dignity and beauty of my reasoning creature. But beyond the beauty I have given the soul by creating her in my image and likeness, look at those who are clothed in the wedding garment of Divine Love, adorned with many true virtues: they are united to me through love. So I say, if you should ask me who they are, I would answer,” said the gentle loving Word, ‘that they are another me; for they have lost and drowned their own will and have clothed themselves and united themselves and conformed themselves with mine.”
It is true, then, that the soul is united to God through love’s affection.”
“After long searches, here and there, in temples and in churches, in earths and in heavens, at last you come back, Completing the circle from where you started, to your own soul, and find that He, for whom you have been seeking all over the world, for whom you have been weeping and praying in churches and temples, on whom you were looking as the mystery of all mysteries, shrouded in the clouds, in the nearest of the near, is your own self, the reality of your life, body and soul.”
-Sathya Sai Baba
After suffering from a terminal illness, in 1982 Mellen-Thomas Benedict ‘died’ and for an hour and a half he was monitored showing no vital signs. Miraculously he returned to his body with a complete remission of the disease – and what may be the most inspirational near-death experience story known to date.
While on the “other side” Mellen journeyed through several realms of consciousness and beyond the “light at the end of the tunnel”. He was shown during his NDE, in holographic detail, Earth’s past and a beautiful vision of mankind’s future for the next 400 years. He experienced the cosmology of our soul’s connection to Mother Earth (Gaia), our role in the Universe, and was gifted with access to Universal Intelligence.
An Amazing excerpt from A Near Death Experience.
“The Light responded. The information transferred to me was that during your life after death experience your beliefs shape the kind of feedback you are getting before the Light. If you were a Buddhist or Catholic or Fundamentalist, you get a feedback loop of your own stuff. You have a chance to look at it and examine it, but most people do not. As the Light revealed itself to me, I became aware that what I was really seeing was our higher Self matrix.
We all have a higher Self, or an oversoul part of our being. It revealed itself to me in its truest energy form. The only way I can really describe it is that the being of the higher Self is more like a conduit. It did not look like that, but it is a direct connection to the Source that each and every one of us has. We are directly connected to the Source. So the Light was showing me the higher Self matrix. I was not committed to one particular religion. So that is what was being fed back to me during my life after death experience.
As I asked the Light to keep clearing for me, to keep explaining, I understood what the higher Self matrix is. We have a grid around the planet where all the higher Selves are connected. This is like a great company, a next subtle level of energy around us, the spirit level, you might say. Then, after a couple of minutes, I asked for more clarification. I really wanted to know what the universe is about, and I was ready to go at that time. I said “I am ready, take me.”
Then the Light turned into the most beautiful thing that I have ever seen: a mandala of human souls on this planet. Now I came to this with my negative view of what was happening on the planet. So as I asked the Light to keep clarifying for me, I saw in this magnificent mandala how beautiful we all are in our essence, our core. We are the most beautiful creations.
The human soul, the human matrix that we all make together is absolutely fantastic, elegant, exotic, everything. I just cannot say enough about how it changed my opinion of human beings in that instant. I said, “Oh, God, I did not know how beautiful we are.” At any level, high or low, in whatever shape you are in, you are the most beautiful creation, you are.
The revelations coming from the Light and seemed to go on and on, then I asked the Light, “Does this mean that Mankind will be saved?” Then, like a trumpet blast with a shower of spiraling lights, the Great Light spoke, saying, “Remember this and never forget; you save, redeem and heal yourself. You always have. You always will. You were created with the power to do so from before the beginning of the world.”
Please visit the website listed here for the full and wonderful story.