Ana Hernandez, curator of ECVA's upcoming exhibit, Imaging the Sacred Art of Chant.
The song that seems to keep resonating in my heart is one that riffs on the theme, "Be the Peace that you wish to see in the world." So when I opened my eyes this morning after meditation, and this was the sight that greeted me, I had to go for my camera -- which made me think of a discussion I had yesterday with a couple of artist friends.
We were talking about the importance of home to each of us. Where do we work? Where do we feel most at home? How often do we leave home, and how is that related to our art?
Mulling our words over later, I realize I've been sticking close to home for a long time now. Of course, the ten speed bumps I have to cross every time I leave or return are a factor in that decision! But I think I've been unduly hard on myself for not wanting to go out more. There is a peace here that feeds my soul, and it's part both of what keeps me here and what allows me to do what I do and be who I am.
... but I think it's also that peace that helps me to be more aware of the compulsion that lies behind it to be and do MORE than I am being and doing. There's always this drive; always this question, "What should I be doing now," or "what have I done today," or "How can I make this better?"
Not this is new, for me, or for anyone else who is drawn to the contemplative practice; it's the age-old tension between Action and Contemplation, and the reason Richard Rohr's organization is called the Center for Action and Contemplation.
But as you're taking a moment today to process your week and prepare for the week ahead, I invite you to think about how that tension manifests itself in your life. And, while you're doing that, take another moment, and breathe out all those shoulds that are driving you. See if you can get back into that space where there is no "more," where you can accept that who you are, and what you're doing now, is enough.
As one of Cynthia Bourgeault's chants tells us:
Be Still and Know that I Am.
Be Still and Know.