In The Woods Muttering

The lilac are in bloom, ancient bushes – ours are anyway – that nearly reach the roof, and scrape against the gutters whenever the wind blows. I can’t mow the lawn because of all the violets and bluets and dandelions. Yesterday I sat in the side yard and read in the bright sun until my eyes hurt, and all the while the bluets, the Quaker’s Ladies, were tossing and stirring in the moss beside me, almost as if in joy.

All of which was an illusion, or so I tell myself, trying mightily these days to actually have a spiritual practice instead of simply knowing a lot about one, enough to talk others to death. Two immediate blocks: my childish desire to be right, more right than you are, and my refusal to allow joy more than a moment or two on the dance floor.

Rereading portions of A Course In Miracles this morning, I stumbled on this – actually I’m going to have to paraphrase – be reverent or you will not know you are in the presence of God. One of the Course’s continual flips of cause and effect, for me anyway. Act as if and then all of sudden you aren’t acting. God is.

And yesterday I listened to El Shaddai by Amy Grant, which K used to sing so many years ago. Name after name after name, the means by which we parse the world into apparently manageable chunks. A friend wrote recently, “I have this feeling that everything is interconnected,” and I thought – but did not say – “what’s really going to flip you out is when you realize there aren’t a bunch of things, just one.”

Little flips of lightening this morning, the moon blurred by mist, peepers loud and insistent in the distant pond. The same promise I have been hearing since I was a little boy wandering around in the woods muttering to myself. Love the world and all that you perceive within it – love without qualification or hesitancy – and this will be forgiveness, and by it you will discover the Kingdom.

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