What emerged today

Less than a year ago, I was asked to help a friend find her way around Facebook. I had no idea, but we worked on it because she needed to take a course on someone's Facebook page.

Gradually over the year I became more and more amazed at the postings that were not just of kids and animals (those are good too) but seeing how Facebook - at least the stream of friends in my communication circle - is really a subtext (and a positive one) of global awareness.

Some of us have almost stopped watching news of any kind this year - only the most obvious essentials - because it is ALL disaster, ALL violence and war-oriented, ALL critical of one person or another, especially during elections. All designed to escalate fear and anxiety if one is not careful and selective. Automatic news-watching is the worst. No reflection on what effect it is having, personally and globally.

But FaceBook for me creates a daily subtext of what is seldom if ever reported on any "news". People helping people; being good to the poor and homeless; creative celebrations; world events and positive ways of seeing people and things rather than entirely negative. And not to forget those things that are NOT reported on the news and yet need to be heard, negative or not.  FaceBook is not controlled by anyone who would benefit from that control, and is therefore closer to the voice and values of ordinary people than any newscast of whatever network.

"We are being invited instead into a new humility, to serve the holy wisdom that is already stirring in the hearts of people everywhere, the growing awareness of earth's interrelatedness and sacredness."

            (John Philip Newell)

Here is a phenomenon that is occurring for me as I get older: I call it "night cleansing."

I am someone who usually sleeps well. But every couple of months now, I wake around 3am and cannot get back to sleep. My mind is churning with old experiences, old places and people, old dilemmas, people I haven't thought of for years, and on and on. There is nothing to be done with or about all this churning. But here is what makes it a "night cleansing": when I get up as early as usual, I am energetic and lighter and don't even miss the sleep for the rest of the day, though part of the thought churning was how tired I would be when I got up!

I expect that this phenomenon is an expression of what Fr. Thomas Keating calls "Divine Therapy." After a certain age, especially if you have been considering your inner life for most of your adult years like I have, some Divine Energy takes over the process and "cleanses" your soul in the way I just described. Layer after layer...preparing the soul, I would add, for its final release in dying.

I love this way of considering the inner workings of the soul. I find it consoling and inviting...and the night cleansing experience a direct response to my prayers of surrender and releasing old hurts, misunderstandings, childhood misinterpretations, and my long history of interpreting ( and misinterpreting) tumultuous events everywhere.

Many of us grew up with the scriptural teaching "remember that your body is the temple of God", though translating that teaching into actual practice has never taken any real hold in the Christian world. The implications are staggering, if you really dwell on it as a teaching, and not just an old adage to prevent people from having sex before marriage.

This year I am engaged in a course with Robert Sardello, learning, at this advanced age, to truly open to the astounding significance of the need to include body experience as equally significant with mind dominance, which has been the story of my life. I am finding it more difficult than I believed possible...and yet - isn't that what it means to learn something new?

The following quote from Sardello's book called Freeing the Soul From Fear (p. 66) reinforces for me why I need to continue this learning and practice, perhaps for the rest of my life:

If the body becaomes dulled, the soul has limited means

of engaging the world. How do you tell?

...degrees of rigidity in our attitudes...

intolerant? dogmatic? inflexible ideas?

prone to fanaticism? oppose necessary change?

find it necessary to conform to outer authority?

I find traces of all these in myself, some more than others, and even the worst ones at different times, depending on what is going on in my life. This passage alone is enough to give me incentive to continue my work with Sardello, and even - especially - when the course ends!

Latest comments

03.03 | 17:19

Laurie...I might have my copy and will look for it. Otherwise...order from Amazon.
It is beyond inspiring. I will let you know. It's on kindle too.

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03.03 | 16:53

Hi Brenda, I would like to read The Choice. Where would I find a copy?

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12.02 | 11:09

Your imagery is intensely complimentary to the text deepening an infusion of wisdom. Thank you..

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01.02 | 10:03

I am grateful, Brneda, for your generous encouragement based on your own experience and quests.

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